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It comes with you very own Zack MorrisWhere’s the advanced, new media, web 2.0, integrated social platforming cell phone for those of us who still enjoy their 1990s technology? Sure you can listen to MP3s on your Apple iPhone. You can do business on your Blackberry, do your social networking on your Gphone and have GPS with the new Drone, but where is the phone for steadfast CompuServe users?

I don’t need a phone that lets me satellite teleconference or download torrents or set up my DVR. But I do need a phone that has Windows Paint and Minesweeper.

I am in no rush. In fact, I’m in the opposite of a rush. I take the bus in Los Angeles. I have all day. I don’t want the 3G or the 4G network. I would be happy with an old-school beeping, loud, gargly connection of a 1G modem to my CompuServe phone. I don’t want a leather case or replaceable skins, but I would like a pen and a piece of paper and some stamps so that I can send text messages.

Instead of coming installed with hardware that is compatible with Windows 7 or Microsoft 2007, it could run on DOS. I would be much happier if I could trade in my ability to get XM radio on my phone with the ability to play Number Munchers, and it would probably keep me sharp for the day.

I could check my e-mail on Prodigy, play a game of You Don’t Know Jack followed by Leisure Suit Larry and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? Even if the phone would weigh five pounds, be the size of a brick and have more radiation than eating lead paint in Chernobyl.

It would make people who fear new technology like myself much more comfortable with using people, but being in denial about it. It’s like when you go along with a senile old person’s story for the hundredth time. Just let them have their world. And let me have my phone.

Next week’s episode: A Christmas Carol

Next week: Saw VI

There are plenty of less-deserving reality show stars

There are plenty of less-deserving reality show stars

Everyone is upset over the Heene family pulling off the hoax that got us on edge for the sake of pitching their reality show, but can you honestly think of a better pilot you’ve watched in the last couple years? Not only was this the greatest pilot-presentation that I’ve ever seen, but I’m desperate to follow them throughout the rest of season one.

This is an excellent TV show and they absolutely deserve to get a full-season order. I don’t know how the pitch itself didn’t sell: Every week, Falcon Heene gets lost in spectacular fashion and the United States Military has to bust out its trillion-dollar machines to try and find him. You watched it last week and that was just the teaser.

Episode two, he gets lost in an ancient mine shaft that is loaded with TNT and the Army Corps of Engineers has to save him. Episode three, he falls off the dad’s boat in shark-infested waters and the coast guard has to come to the rescue. Episode 4, kidnapped by Somali pirates and the Navy Seals get to work. Episode 5, Taliban.

I know you’re saying that it would get old with each episode ending in, “Oh, he was in the attic all along,” but what is a better timewaster while you’re at work than three hours of CNN covering the Army putting all their technology to use to find this kid? We spend so much more money on our military than any other nation, and the wacky mishaps of Falcon Heene can finally justify our defense budget.

Maybe you could make the argument that people would feel guilty because we would be spending millions of dollars every week when the kid wasn’t lost in the first place, but aren’t all reality shows guilty pleasures?

We’ve got hovercrafts, amphibians helicopters, heat-seeking sensors, supersonic jets and supercomputers just sitting around collecting dust, but imagine if we can watch them try and find a six-year-old on a weekly basis. You were having a blast last week trying to figure out if the kid was dead or not in spectacular fashion. And if there was a whole season of it, I would be first in line to buy the DVD.

The sequel writes itself

The sequel writes itself

Is it possible that the discovery of the “missing link,” Ardipithecus Ramidus, could finally rescue the long-anticipated Encino Man sequel from development hell?

It seems like a perfect storm of a built-in audience: a sequel that could lead to unlimited franchising; the “based-on-a-true-story” element; the fact that people are surely dying for more Pauley Shore; and that this finally solves that unanswered cliffhanger at the end of Encino Man.

Remember at the end of that piece of cinematic genius? There’s another earthquake, or whatever released the people-stuck-in-ice, and the Encino Woman charges into the house? We now have our Encino Woman.

It’s a movie that hits every quadrant of moviegoers: the high school comedy aspect would get teens and young adults; the Brendan Fraser-Ardipithecus Ramidus love story would attract women; and Pauley Shore would attract old people who think they’re laughing at a retard.

This is just the natural progression of modern anthropology. First you discover the fossil. Then you figure out that it could fit in as the missing link between humans and chimps. And then you theorize what would happen if said fossil had to go to high school in the Valley.

Your first thought is probably, “How will you explain the gap between Encino Man 1 and 2?” But don’t worry, that just sets up the love triangle even better. See what happens is that Brendan Fraser’s character – who is still being held back because he is a caveman and can’t graduate high school – by this time has taken a hot love interest. He’s a fit guy and could probably easily snag a sophomore by this point.

But then Ardipithecus Ramidus, in all her hairy, huge-armed, semi-arboreal-dwelling glory storms into Encino High School while Pauley Shore (no exposition needed for why he’s still in school) and the guy who played Rudy intervene. They realize that Ardipithecus Ramidus is in love with Encino Man, and they’re meant to be together, but he has fallen for a young floozy. So our wacky protagonists have to find a way to get them together before prom or else the “Missing Link” will go missing forever.

Bam, $100 Million opening weekend guaranteed.

Not to mention all the spin offs, sequels, Geico commercials and unfrozen caveman lawyer revitalization that Ardipithecus Ramidus could provide. I understand that her discovery is a major breakthrough for science. But it could be an even bigger breakthrough for her career, as soon as Pauley Shore and Brendan Fraser sign on and Link goes missing no more.

The Meisner acting kicks in after a few seconds. Watch it on YouTube here:

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October 2009