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Posts posted by R.CAllen

  1. I'm going to provide a quick summary of the Christmas Special for those of you who haven't yet seen it.


    DAVID TENNANT: We're off on another happy-go-lucky adventure. Why, you might even call it a Poseidon Adventure!

    FATTIE'S HUSBAND: *falls into engine thingmabob*

    FATTIE: *falls into engine thingmabob*

    KYLIE MINOGUE: *falls into engine thingmabob*

    THE BAD GUY: *falls along with her into engine thingmabob*

    DAVID TENNANT: Now I am Jesus or whatever. Again. Come, me angels! Away!

    KYLIE MINOGUE'S GHOST: Isn't it sad when the Doctor has to let go of a newly found girlfriend?

    AUDIENCE: Not really. The show has done it a couple times so far. And never very well.

    DAVID TENNANT: So we see that the true meaning of Christmas is all about watching thousands upon thousands of people die and then giving a senile old man a whole lot of money.

    PREVIEW OF SEASON 4: I am so much better than the past hour-and-a-half.


    All that aside : I sort of liked the bits with the amateur Earthologist going on about 'And then they EAT the people of Turkey in a savage ritual'. Mini-Maul was kind of entertaining too. Otherwise, it was at the best of times same-old same-old.

  2. Every single word that dropped from Kelly's lips this episode was laugh city. And that ending was the show's best piece of awkward pain in an episode that was chock full of it. And was then followed by a moment of utter weirdness. The Office is really a far better show than it needs to be.


    Dwight doing the names of his ping-pong heroes also cracked me up. I'm easy. Funny sounds is all it really takes to get me.

  3. Yeah. As I've said many times, we're supposed to like him (and I do). He's got a big heart, he just doesn't know how to relate to others well.


    I actually think his deal is that he places far too much emphasis on relating to others. Under the right circumstances, Michael can be really personable. His shtick can work in certain given situations and time and time again we've seen him have major success with clients. Dunder Mifflin shot themselves in the foot when they blindly promoted him above the level of salesman into management, that's all.


    Weirdly enough, Ryan and Michael are now being set up as opposite sides of the same coin. One gets shoved from their area of competence into a place that plays to all their faults, the other connives his way out of a place where he can't succeed into the very position with which the other is so uncomfortable.

  4. Yep. Whoever guessed that Andy and Dwight would end up vying for Angela's affections sure was clever. Not so clever in that they are now pointing out the completely obvious situation with Kelly and Darryl, but still, clever.


    A few words on Ryan-ization. To me, it's not just about 'becoming more like Michael'. It's the show putting the characters through a process where we stop laughing with them and start laughing at them combined with them developing a certain meanness that was previously only latent. We laugh at Kevin far more often than we laugh at Oscar, y'know? And you can probably trace the slow fall of Ryan into douchebaggery from the moment he opted out of playing a prank with Jim back in Season 2.


    On the subject of the show's portrayal of religion : surely the funniest bit this season has been Michael advocating paganism in the conference room. Though I think at least one of the jokes was stolen from Woody Allen.

  5. These hour long episodes are kind of a drag. They're clearly sandwiching them together it based on the most tenuous of connections and I completely forget what happened at the beginning by the time I get to the end. Can't wait until 'Scrubs' comes back on the air so the show can go back to a normal format.


    Whoever called the Andy-Dwight rivalry for Angela's affections was all kinds of right.


    I was sorry to see that the whole 'Creed pretends he's young' thing wasn't going to be a running gag.


    Starting to wonder whether the show is planning a similar evolution for Phyllis like they did with Ryan. She's getting a mean side emphasized this season that has rarely been seen up until now.

  6. A number of government officials in Nazi Germany emigrated to South American countries in the aftermath of World War II.


    The show has frequently hinted that Dwight's maternal side of the family tree were all Nazis.


    The Shoah Foundation may or may not be a reference to Steven Spielberg's organization established shortly after he made Schindler's List. I'm not sure if they (or other organizations dedicated to either Holocaust memorial or Nazi-hunting) have the authority to stop travel visas. Whatever the particulars are, well, the basic gist of the joke is that Dwight's gramps is a Nazi war criminal living out his remaining days in a country where he's effectively safe from legal prosecution.


    I think this is the most obvious they've been about the whole thing since way back in the first season.

  7. DWIGHT: Grandpa Manheim is 103 and still puttering around down in Argentina.


    I start to think there's no way they're going there but then...


    DWIGHT: I tried to go visit him once but my travel visa was protested by the Shoah Foundation.


    Where did they go? There!

  8. Did anyone else notice that bit towards the beginning where both Kevin & Oscar were revealed to be a part of the interview? Previously that had been the exclusive gag of Michael & Dwight (with a small jumpoff to Dwight & Andy in last year's finale) and it seemed like the show was breaking new ground to me.


    Not to mention that they acknowledged the camera crew in a very real way. I think the last time that happened was when Pam tried to figure out if Dwight & Angela were a couple.

  9. Sure. For one thing : I think any references to his past as a musician (which might only be in deleted scenes, know that I think of it) is just a reference to his real life history.


    In general, this might also be true of any of the other characters who are played by the show's writers. I know that the actress who plays Kelly has a blog ("Stuff I Bought") which makes her come off like a slightly smarter version of herself. Which I think she actually admits to somewhere in one of the entries.

  10. Yeah. Helms is great. I kind of think his character has lost a bit of the funny since they merged the branches.


    Does anyone else read Creed's blog at the website? "Don’t try telling me that you’re only as strong as your weakest link. My weakest link is my ankle and I’ll be damned if I’m going to let it stop me. I’m as strong as my neck, the strongest part of my body." Come on. Go read it.

  11. Okay. There are some fine moments in 'Myself As Witness' and the fact that it eventually proved to be, y'know, ABOUT SOMETHING is in its favour. Also : the ending.


    The best bit about the 'Robin & Marian' screenplay were the 3 different introductions. Two about Robin Hood as both the legend and the man as well as a slightly shorter bit on the process of writing a screenplay in general and filming the movie in particular. Oh, and this is just tops:


    MARIAN: What will you do now? Fight the Sheriff and his men? More corpses? Aren't you sick of it?


    ROBIN:You ask if --


    On July the twelfth, 1191, the mighty fortress that was Acre fell to Richard. That's his one great victory in the Holy Land and he was sick in bed and never struck a blow. And on the twentieth of August, John and I, we stood there on the plain outside of town and watched while every Moslem left alive came marching out in chains. King Richard spared the richest to be ransomed. Then he took the strong for slaves. And he took the children, all the children, and he had them chopped apart. When that was done, he had the mothers killed and then, when everyone was dead -- three thousand bodies on the plain -- he had them all eviscerated so their guts could be explored for gold and precious stones. The Churchmen on the scene, and there were many, took it for a triumph and a Bishop put his mitre on and led us all in prayer.


    You ask me if I'm sick of it? You ask --?


    I guess I really need to watch the movie now. Next on my plate : 'Akademgorodok! The Siberian City of Science!' by Paul Josephson.

  12. What? Dwight versus Andy for Angela? Huh?


    Asides from the nipple-chafing (loved the sight gag towards the end of the race) I don't think there even was much of Ed Helms in this episode. Where are you getting this from?

  13. Meh. She's served her purpose. A follow-up episode to find out what happened to Karen and that's about it.


    Though I do like the idea of Roy and her getting together. Symmetrical.


    (P.S : Toby is far from bold. It's just that he knows it's his job to curb Michael's excesses when possible and everyone else sees their jobs as to give in to Michael whenever they've been sufficiently pushed. The reason I think we all find Toby so much fun is that he's always in the highly comical position of being in conflict with Michael which is the sort of opportunity most of the other characters only get from time to time. He gets to be in the spot where the show stores its second level of laughs : not just the characters being idiots but the reaction of others to that idiocy.)


    (P.P.S "That's Buddhism." "Are you sure?" *pause* "No.")

  14. Let all those who abandon Nightly see their names in glory no longer!


    I'm trying to think of a way to say "shut your shtupid face" politely. Darth Evolence was all kinds of awesome. But, yeah, I get what you mean. It does look a little odd.


    Myself As Witness by James Goldman.


    An epistolary novel that starts off slow and eventually gets to the level of fairly good 'The Lion In Winter' fanfic. I've also got the printed screenplay of his Robin Hood movie with Sean Connery and I hope that'll read better.

  15. Would it make you feel better to know that most of the works that have been adapted to the screen are available for free along with new commentary on the making of the episode? I scanned through Paul Cornell's first few chapters of 'Human Nature' and didn't exactly find it to my taste but kinda liked the extra piece on the adaptation process.


    Also, you're accusing the writers of recycling previous work instead of creating new material? This is Doctor Who we're talking about, right? That sort of thing is pretty much a given fact with this show.

  16. Like in Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman I'm sure the future doesn't just look at Lois Lane as unbelievable naive (for not realizing Superman puts on glasses and is in disguise)


    Yeah! One of the best scenes from that series is when a time traveling villain calls her on that piece of idiocy.


    Though I think you're being more than a little unfair to the character in terms of the most recent movie. It's clear that the exact same things that attracted her to Superman are what attracts her to Cyclops. She's not involving herself in some nepotistic powerplay. She's just rebounding on her ex to a carbon copy.

  17. has participated in several landmark (and socially relevant) adventures with Green Arrow



    Hal Jordan is a real jerk in those landmark and socially relevant adventures.


    "You always have all the answers, Green Arrow! Here - take a look at your adopted son shooting up drugs! Isn't it great that I can use his addiction and your pain to win an argument?"


    And some people think Guy Gardner is crass. Compared to Hal 'Hah Hah! Drugs!' Jordan he's practically a saint. The oldest and wisest Smurfs in the galaxy gave THIS GUY a power ring?

  18. Quick clarification :


    He originally appeared in the Alan Moore short story featuring Jordan's predecessor, Abin Sur. It involved prophesies of both Sur's own death as well as the eventual destruction of the entire Corps. The current storyline maintains that the conflict we're seeing now is the one that was foretold.


    There's nothing all that cool about Sodal Yat in and of himself and the very reason I selected him is the same one for which I reject Hal Jordan. People seem to like Jordan because they're TOLD he's great and I like Sodal Yat because Alan Moore TOLD us he's great. It's just that I give more weight to Alan Moore's one-panel contribution than to the praise granted to Jordan by a slew of other authors.


    Technically, of course, the "Greatest Green Lantern of All!" was Superman. He just never got the chance.

  19. There are some characters (usually the iconic ones or even many of the villains) where a large part of what makes them unique is expressed by the way they're regarded by others. Even if that's true of Hal Jordan I'm still not sure that it is enough to make me see him as anything other than Captain Bland.


    He flies a plane and has brown hair. Gets knocked out a lot. No big deal to me.

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