Friday, July 31, 2009

It's Friday

I know it has nothing to do with comedy or drama or TV, but it's putrid humid outside, there is a horrendous thunderstorm brewing, and I'm stuck in the office.

I love this song and I love this video. I'm a big fan of songs set to videos with cute emo couples kissing sweetly. I'm girlie that way. Or pervy. Whatever.

The New Pornographers featuring member Neko Case.

TV Redux: Six Feet Under's Series Finale


Created and produced by Alan Ball, Six Feet Under aired for five seasons on HBO. It held many profound themes, chief amongst them being the view that death need not only be an end, but can be a indication of a new a beginning. This was immediately established in the premiere episode when the patriarch of the Fisher family met his demise suddenly, violently, shaking mother, brothers and sister to the core. His death opened wounds, stimulated old pains and made each member face their true self - or at least strive to ask questions and experiment with risk and love.

Six Feet Under ended in 2005 with, in my opinion, one of the most stunning, emotional television endings I've ever seen. For viewers who connected with the lives of these characters throughout the years, and even for the casual viewer, it hit a powerful chord.


Amy Poehler Return to Weekend Update

Amy Poehler will be returning to the "Weekend Update" desk for the first two installments of SNL. Poehler garnered an Emmy nomination for her work on this past season's Saturday Night Live, most notably for her parody of Hilary Clinton and the fact she's plain fantastic on the newsdesk alongside Seth Meyers. Poelher will continue to work on Parks and Recreation. The prime time sitcom was renewed for the 2009-10 season. Saturday Night Live returns for its 35th season on September 26th (11:30pm ET).

Source: Variety

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Leo Allen

I once mistook Leo Allen for Ken Marino in a wig. It was in the online video for 92nd St Y Tribeca's goofy New York Times commercial parody, passed along throughout the internet and loved by all haters of the real TV advertisement promoting subscriptions to The Weekender. The ad was created by Michael Showalter and featured an array of popular alternative comedians, some from the world of stand up, others from the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, plus friend Paul Rudd enjoying the Socks and Politics Section. In the spot, Allen claimed "I got a bad cold from one of my co-workers". His fringe of bangs flopped over his Clark Kent glasses, and all I could think of was how funny Ken Marino looked in that wig, and then I remembered how we have the same birthday. (December 19th, y'all).

Here it is:



About three months later, it occurred to me. That's not Marino. That's Leo Allen. The stand up comedian who is half the team of Slovin and Allen. That Leo Allen. The one who co-created the "Time Machine" sketch I love so much from the comedy special he and Eric Slovin starred in on Comedy Central at the beginning of this decade. The guy who read 100 books in one year starting back in 2005 and discussed it on NPR. The Leo Allen who wrote for Saturday Night Live and hosts Whiplash at UCB. I don't know how it got past me, but I did spend last Monday night watching eight innings of Mets/Rockies baseball thinking the game was at Coors Field when they were actually playing in Citifield ("Wow, they sure do have a lot of Mets fans in Colorado!" Says I). So, I'm not always the brightest bulb on the marquis.

Leo Allen came to mind for today's post, because he showed up on Michael and Michael Have Issues last night as Nick Flynn, the new Editor for Sho and Black's pretend yet very real show. There was some thick romantic chemistry between himself and the very uptight Marla, M&M's Associate Producer, played by Jessi Klein, another funny person. Allen was a charmer, especially when he put his foot down about not wanting to date a chick who wanted to pee on him. Wow. Who knew that behind her glasses Marla harbors a fetish. Still, nice to see Leo as part of the Issues guest stars.

Before all that weird stuff came down, Sho and Black played matchmaker:

Michael & Michael Have IssuesWed 10:30pm / 9:30c
Seating Chart
www.comedycentral.com
Joke of the DayStand-Up ComedyFree Online Games


Here's some of Leo Allen's collaboration with writing partner Eric Slovin on the aforementioned Comedy Special of 2001, Slavin and Allen.

"Time Machine"

Jokes.com
Slovin & Allen - Time Machine
comedians.comedycentral.com
Joke of the DayStand-Up ComedyFree Online Games

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Original Online Content: Cinemash

Earlier this year, Zune (Microsoft's music service) partnered with Mean Magazine to produce original episodic video shorts of comedic re-enactments of popular movies of the past. Last week, I posted a video short parody of the 1991 feature Point Break, that originally starred Patrick Swayze, Keanu Reeves and Gary Busey, and was re-made by the very funny members of Human Giant and Reno 911.

Through the magic of comedy....



...Pappas, originally played by Gary Busey...








...is now played by Human Giant's Rob Huebel








...and Patrick Swayze who originally played Brohdi...









...is now played by Reno 911's Robert Ben Garant







Film parodies also include funny remakes of Tron with Cheech and Chong, Carrie with Will Arnett, and Dirty Dancing with Charlene Yi (soon to appear in the highly anticipated indie Paper Heart) and Channing Tatum. They are all available at MSN's Cinemash site.

One film reinvented as parody that I favor is Sid and Nancy. Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt (pictured above) do a bent version of the first couple of punk. See it here.

Cinemash Photos by James Gooding

Monday, July 27, 2009

I Have To Watch Jimmy Fallon More Often

Michael and Michael have some massively dysfunctional issues that I'm days late for. When they fight, they turn into entirely different guys...(Boo to the embedded commercial).

Sunday, July 26, 2009

USA Travelogue: A Week of "Boosh"

Photo Courtesy of BBC

The Mighty Boosh took on America this week, and kicked some state-side butt. They were a big hit at their gig last week in NYC's Bowery Ballroom with a massive throng of screaming fans, and their promotion at Comic Con sounds like it was a smash. Jimmy Fallon introduced them to the Late Night audience on Wednesday night where they turned on The Boosh charm.



I love looking at pictures of people doing fun things at events I never get to attend. To join the fun virtually, I live vicariously through Flickr. Here's The Boosh's Photostream documenting their promotion.

Julian and Noel also received some press coverage at NYTimes.com.

NYTimes Arts/Television: Comic Cult Strives to Export Itself

NYTimes ArtsBeat: The Mighty Boosh Explains How Comedy Is Created

The DVDs came out on July 21st. Check out details in my previous post about The Boosh.

Next stop, the guys are scheduled to appear on Chelsea Lately on E! Monday night.

DVD of th Week: The State

I'm glad that today is the last day of Comic Con so I can stop feeling incredibly envious of all the cool geeks and nerds who've enjoyed a weekend of screenings, panels and celebrity runs ins I've been missing 3000 miles away.

However, I am filling the void. The Complete series of The State came out on on DVD on July 14th, and I'm wallowing in its super fun-ness. The DVD drought for The State languished, much in the same way as It's Garry Shandling's Show. Like Shandling, episodes of The State, which aired from 1993 thru 1995 on MTV, were locked away from the public, hard to find for home consumption for years, give or take the old VHS and poorly transferred uploads on YouTube. In the case of The State, this was due in part to a tangle of music rights issues. But the gods of TV worked their way around that hurdle and finally got on board by spreading The State love on disk. It's a blast to see David Wain, Ken Marino, Thomas Lennon, Kerri Kenney-Silver, Kevin Allison, Joe Lo Truglia, Ben Garant, Michael Patrick Jann, Todd Holoubek, Michael Showalter and Michael Ian Black back in the day. This is the nucleus group that spawned or appeared in Reno 911, Stella, Party Down, Wet Hot American Summer and many more collaborations. They were so young back then. Hell, we all were.

The State DVD



Available at Amazon.com.

Friday, July 24, 2009

"How's My Hair?" And Conchords Take Another Flight

After all these years, it's unbelievable that the brilliant hilari-osity of It's Garry Shandling's Show has not yet been available on DVD - or VHS for that matter. Co-created by Shandling and Alan Zweibel, it ran on Showtime from 1986 to 1990. If ever there was a "ground breaking" show, it's this one. It was a meta look into the world of Garry, with friends, famous and not, bounding into his life while he spoke to the audience about stuff. I know the pitchforks and torches handled by comedy geeks will arrive at my door for saying this, but I found this show much funnier than Shandling's second highly influential series on HBO The Larry Sanders Show. The DVD box set will include 16 disks fit with 72 episodes plus all the extras and goodies you could hope for. It will be released on October 20th. Favorite moment: Gilda Radner visits Garry.

I will be singing the theme song all day now.



The box set is available at Amazon for pre-order and is being offered for $119.99. I know we're in the middle of the second Great Depression, but I say it's worth it.


SubPop has announced that Flight of the Conchords will be releasing a second official US release on October 20th. (Their previous albums were UK/New Zealand releases.) I Told You I Was Freaky will include the songs created for the second season of their HBO comedy, which includes "Carol Brown" and "Too Many Dicks on the Dance Floor".

Now, I don't want to be wishing the summer away, and I shutter at the thought of Fall closing in on my pedicured, flip flop wearing feet, but October sounds like it's going to be one cool month to look forward to and October 20th will be one awesome day. I almost can't wait.

Some Rising Stars On Conan This Week

Zach Galifianakis. I wasn't one of the lucky to know him from his shows at Largo or clubs here in New York, but I once caught an early performance of his on Conan's show years ago. He was playing a piano and making the most hilarious jokes and observations. Something deep in the pit of my soul sensed that this guy was really special. His stock is on the rise, and it's so well deserved.

Part 1



Part 2



Jack McBrayer. What a sweet, funny brilliant comedian. It's thrilling to see how his character on 30 Rock has earned him some props. Can't wait to see him at UCB's FIT show next month (with Paul Scheer) in New York.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Office Is Back in Production

The cast of The Office has reported back to work for their first table read for season six. The premiere episode will be entitled "Gossip" written by Paul Leiberstein and will air on September 17th. As for spoilers, Executive Producer Greg Daniels said "There's going to be a staffing change for Jim and work...and with Pam pregnant, expect some life moves in that area."

Fans are speculating and making wishes for what they'd like to see between Jim and Pam in season six. Personally, I can't wait for that kid to be born. It's my desire to see Baby Halpert projectile vomit in Dwight's face. I'd like to see this in every episode starting from the day this child lands on earth.

Seriously. My wishes: Please make the show funnier. Give us more Jim development. Make me like Pam and Michael again. Tighten up storyline continuity. No more birthing of watermelons on set. No more broad humor, although I will make a concession if you do go with Baby Halpert projectile vomiting in Dwight's face. It's just a personal choice.

Retro TV: The Beatles Saturday Morning Cartoon

Amongst my Mad Magazines and Peanuts books, my childhood was filled with Beatlemania - Beatlemania that was about twelve years too late because by the time I understood who the Beatles were, they had long since broken up, sued the crap out of each other and wrote songs containing angry cryptic messages about how they each thought the other sucked.

ABC-TV ran a cartoon series for children on Saturday mornings from 1965 to 1969 called The Beatles. I have to wonder how Beatle kids of the day could even get through five minutes of it. The voices and Scouse accents were horrid (did any of the creators actually HEAR the real Beatles speak?), the stories were way beyond silly, yet the music, all in its original recorded glory, livened up the embarrassing shit load doled out via television while children ate their Cheerios. The Beatles hated...hated this show. I will say, the likeness of each Beatle is pretty good and a bit warmer than the creepiness of the Beatles images in "Rock Band". (I am dieing to play this).

Since George Harrison was my favorite, and "Taxman" is an awesome song, here is a clip.

If you want to cut to the chase, the song kicks in at 2:40. The storyline build up gets a bit tiring.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Retro Television: Life with Lucy

Poor Lucy. She was trying to make a comeback in the 80's but quickly learned her lovable Lucy-ness of the 50's, 60's and 70's wasn't going to make it in the acid washed, mullet permed world of the Reagan decade.

This opening is gut wrenchingly bad. Yet, Lucy looks happy to be back. I can't help myself because it is always good to see Ms. Ball. She reminds me of my mother. Also, I am a major fan of the little co-star who would one day turn into the lead singer of Rilo Kiley and present day solo artist. Look out for her. Yes. That's her.

The Making of Mad Men Poster


The following behind-the-scenes video on the making of Mad Men's season 3 poster is not only a glimpse into how they made the cool shot seen above, it's also a fascinating look into how set designers participate in the allegory within a story. Even if it's just for promotion, the symbolism of a show such as Mad Men, is conveyed through water rising, reflections and lighting, metaphorically showing how this character's mysterious past, bad boy ways and the impending 1960's cultural shift is about to drown him. You don't need exposition to give viewers this idea, it's all done with imagery.




See more Mad Men video at AMC.

Monday, July 20, 2009

"If You Believe They Put A Man on the Moon..."

40 Years Ago Today



40 Years Ago Today in another universe where heavy consumption of beer and Indica sustain life...

Thank you, Gawker.

The Mighty Boosh: DVD's Out Tomorrow

Speaking of moons...

New Pilot for Fox: The Station


Pretty cool news, this...

Ben Stiller will be Executive Producing a comedy pilot for Fox Television about about CIA operatives in South America called The Station. David Wain (Wainy Days Stella) will direct. As for the cast, John Goodman (Roseanne, The Big Lebowski) has just signed on to star. Joining him will be comedian Whitney Cummings (who I saw at the Hollywood Improv last month opening for my funny friend Bryan Callen and she killed), Justin Bartha, the missing groom, found sunburned on the roof of Caesar's in The Hangover, Julio Oscar Mechoso, and the awesome Rob Huebel (Human Giant) who should be appearing on Michael and Michael Have Issues in upcoming weeks and currently appearing in the video below.

Source: Variety

Here's a funny video short just posted on Tom Lennon's (or Reno 911's Jim Dangle's) MySpace site: Point Break


<a href="http://video.msn.com/?mkt=en-US&from=sp_en-us_cinemash&vid=02fbd38f-cf72-487c-a788-bbca5eb51d94" target="_new" title=""RENO 911!" and Human Giant Cinemash "Point Break"">Video: "RENO 911!" and Human Giant Cinemash "Point Break"</a>

And The Weekend Took More...

Walter Cronkite is the reason CBS was known as "The Tiffany Network". At least that's the case in my mind. His career as a journalist descended directly from the pioneer of 20th Century reportage himself, Edward R. Murrow, who must be sadly turning in his grave at the sight of today's 24 hour news hum. Being a child in the 70's, I wasn't alive when JFK was assassinated, nor do I recall seeing the first moon landing; yet, as I remember him, beaming from our old color TV set in our furnished basement, Cronkite made every day news into an important event. His confident pose, commanding voice and warm face made you trust every word he said. His life was one well lived. May he RIP.

This may not be directly TV related, but I have a personal affection for Frank McCourt. His book Angela's Ashes and 'Tis, not only moved me, but his tragic childhood in Ireland reminded me of my own father's horrific struggles as a child during World War II, and subsequent young adulthood in New York.

There are teams of adults who passed through the New York City school system who had Mr. McCourt as a teacher, and were lucky to have been educated by a man whose American dream came true. Another life well lived, especially out of the ashes of his past. May he RIP.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Patton Oswalt in "Big Fan"

Patton Oswalt is known for his stand up performances, for his role on King of Queens, and for his stint on The Comedians of Comedy. He's recently taken a turn at drama in the upcoming film Big Fan.

The film stirred up some positive buzz at Sundance. Oswalt looks great. It's also nice to see Matt Servitto (Sopranos) in this flick. He's a terrific guy and a supremely talented actor.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The 61st Annual Emmy Nominations: Some Awesome Surprises...Some Not...


The 2009 Emmy Awards were announced today, and there are some massive surprises and kudos to go all around. Yes, the nominees tend to be a bit dumb (Entourage? Shaloub? Again?), but sometimes it hits the mark. Some well deserved newbies are going to be up for the big prize this year, especially in the comedy category. Flight of the Conchords is finally getting some love by being nominated alongside perennial Best Comedy Show favorites such as 30 Rock, The Office, Weeds, Entourage, with Jemaine Clement getting a nom for Best Actor in a Comedy Series. Jack McBrayer, the lovably hilarious Kenneth Parcel of 30 Rock joins Tracy Morgan in the Best Supporting Actor Comedy Series category. Some SNL ladies are getting attention with Amy Poehler and Kristin Wiig listed in the Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series category. And Sarah Silverman getting the Best Actress in a Comedy award? Yes! She's tremendously hilarious, and her show is outrageously fun. She might have a tough time alongside the formidable Tina Fey, listed in the same group, but I'm pulling for that Silverman chick.

In the world of television Drama, it's a pleasure to see Elisabeth Moss get nominated for Best Actress in a Drama for her portrayal of Peggy in Mad Men. She's a scene stealer, sublime in content, heart breaking as a whole, yet uplifting in her strength. Mad Men also received a nomination for Best Drama.

Another well deserved nomination is Aaron Paul, whose remarkable work on Breaking Bad demanded he be a shoe in for not just a nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama, but the full blown winner in the category. He's up against some veterans like William Hurt and William Shattner, so hopefully voters will recognize Paul's subtle and emotionally charged performance.

Jessica Lange and Drew Barrymore were also nominated for Best Actress in a Miniseries or Movie for Grey Gardens. They were stunning as Big and Little Edie Beale.

Boo. Ed Helms didn't get nominated.

Wow. 30 Rock hit a record with 22 nominations. I love the show, but isn't this Tina Fey and 30 Rock worship a bit too much?

The 61st Annual Emmy Awards will be held at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday, September 20th. It will air on CBS with host Neil Patrick Harris.

Here's the List of Nominees:

DRAMA SERIES:
"Big Love," HBO
"Breaking Bad," AMC
"Damages," FX
"Dexter," Showtime
"House," Fox
"Lost," ABC
"Mad Men," AMC

COMEDY SERIES:
"Entourage," HBO
"Family Guy," Fox
"How I Met Your Mother," CBS
"Flight of the Conchords," HBO
"The Office," NBC
"30 Rock," NBC
"Weeds," Showtime

ACTOR, DRAMA SERIES:
Simon Baker, "The Mentalist"
Gabriel Byrne, "In Treatment"
Bryan Cranston, "Breaking Bad"
Michael C. Hall, "Dexter"
Jon Hamm, "Mad Men"
Hugh Laurie, "House"

ACTRESS, DRAMA SERIES:
Glenn Close, "Damages"
Sally Field, "Brothers and Sisters"
Mariska Hargitay, "Law and Order: Special Victims Unit"
Holly Hunter, "Saving Grace"
Elisabeth Moss, "Mad Men"
Kyra Sedgwick, "The Closer"

ACTRESS, COMEDY SERIES:
Christina Applegate, "Samantha Who?"
Toni Collette, "United States of Tara"
Tina Fey, "30 Rock"
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, "New Adventures of Old Christine"
Mary-Louise Parker, "Weeds"
Sarah Silverman, "The Sarah Silverman Program"

ACTOR, COMEDY SERIES:
Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock"
Steve Carell, "The Office"
Jemaine Clement, "Flight of the Conchords"
Jim Parsons, "The Big Bang Theory"
Tony Shalhoub, "Monk"
Charlie Sheen, "Two and a Half Men"

SUPPORTING ACTOR, COMEDY SERIES:
Jon Cryer, "Two and a Half Men"
Kevin Dillon, "Entourage"
Neil Patrick Harris, "How I Met Your Mother"
Jack McBrayer, "30 Rock"
Tracy Morgan, "30 Rock"
Rainn Wilson, "The Office"

SUPPORTING ACTOR, DRAMA SERIES:
Christian Clemenson, "Boston Legal"
Michael Emerson, "Lost"
William Hurt, "Damages"
Aaron Paul, "Breaking Bad"
William Shatner, "Boston Legal"
John Slattery, "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING ACTRESS, DRAMA SERIES:
Rose Byrne, "Damages"
Hope Davis, "In Treatment"
Cherry Jones, "24"
Sandra Oh, "Grey's Anatomy"
Dianne Wiest, "In Treatment"
Chandra Wilson, "Grey's Anatomy"

SUPPORTING ACTRESS, COMEDY SERIES:
Kristin Chenoweth, "Pushing Daisies"
Amy Poehler, "Saturday Night Live"
Jane Krakowski, "30 Rock"
Elizabeth Perkins, "Weeds"
Kristin Wiig, "Saturday Night Live"
Vanessa Williams, "Ugly Betty"

WRITING FOR A COMEDY SERIES:
James Bobin, Jemaine Clement, Bret McKenzie, "Flight of the Conchords"
Jack Burditt and Robert Carlock, "30 Rock"
Robert Carlock, "30 Rock"
Matt Hubbard, "30 Rock"
Ron Weiner, "30 Rock"



Source: LA Times

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Mighty Boosh Coming to US and DVD

Photo courtesy of BBC

I'm feeling as sparkly as Vince Noir's mirror ball jump suit. The Mighty Boosh, currently airing on Cartoon Net's Adult Swim on Sunday nights at 1am, is set for an American tour to promote the US July 21st release of seasons 1 - 3 on DVD!

To kick off the whirlwind of promotion, Julian Barratt (aka "Howard Moon") and Noel Fielding (aka "Vince Noir") will be appearing on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Wednesday, July 22nd and on
Chelsea Lately on July 27th. They'll be at Comic-Con 2009 in San Diego (July 23rd - 26th) at the Adult Swim booth on July 24th and the BBC America Booth on the 25th. See the full itinerary below for their Comic Con appearances.

During Comic Con, there will be a limited supply of tee shirts (only about 200) available for purchase at the BBC America booth for $17, so move all your ironic tee's to the side of your closet to make room, because here it is.

Photo Courtesy of BBC

As for the DVDs: The Mighty Boosh Seasons 1 through 3 will each come complete with two discs, packaged with some fun bonus extras. The suggested retail price will be $29.98. Check out the BBC America Shop where they are going for $25.98. Amazon is offering season 1 at $19.99 and seasons 2 and 3 at $24.99.

DVD Details

The Mighty Boosh: Season 1: Vince and Howard work at Bob Fossil's (Rich Fulcher) Zooniverse. We are introduced to Naboo the enigmatic Shamen and Bollo the lovable Gorilla.

Season 1 Bonus Features
-Inside the Zooniverse, History of the Boosh, Outtakes, Picture Gallery, Commentary






The Mighty Boosh: Season 2: More epic, mind altering adventures with the fabulous Vince and the jazzy Howard. This is the one with my fave, "The Legend of Old Greg". Pour me a Bailey's.

Season 2 Bonus Features
-The Boosh Tundra, Boosh Publicity, Making Series 2, Outtakes, Interactive Photo Gallery, Deleted Scenes, Sweet, Boosh Music







The Mighty Boosh
: Season 3: Vince and Howard are working at the Nabootique, a second hand shop in Dalston. Pink bladder (yes, a talking bladder) Tony Harrison joins the Shamen crew to party large. Personal Fave episode: "Eels".


Season 3 Bonus Features
-Commentary, Making Boosh 3, Boosh Publicity, Deleted Scenes, Mini Royale Promo, Outtakes, Boosh Music




Comic-Con 2009 Mighty Boosh Details:

SAN DIEGO — July 24/25

COMIC-CON Event Schedule:

Friday July 24:

· 2-3 pm: Signing at Adult Swim booth #3351

· 4:45-5:45 pm Panel (Room 6A)

· 11 pm The Mighty Boosh Bash (A full cast DJ Set)

4th and B (345 B st., between State St and Union St)

o Tickets $5 adv/$10 door

o Drink tickets ($8 mixed/$5 beer)

o Tickets available at Ticketmaster and Club Box Office

SATURDAY July 25:

· 4:30-5:30 – Signing at BBC America Booth #3629


Watch this space for possible DVD give aways.




Monday, July 13, 2009

I Don't Like Mondays...But This Made Me Happy

These guys are so much better than Mr. Met and the Mets Pepsi Party Patrol.

Michael and Michael Have Issues Premieres on Wednesday

After a flurry of emotionally charged Twitter tweets between Michael and Michael, after verbal battles with guest stars, including some possible pornographic situations where dignity was trashed, after time away from their kids, family and cats, Michael and Michael Have Issues is finally set to premiere on Wednesday at 10:30pm ET on Comedy Central. It's been a while since Showalter and Black have tip toed through the tulips of sketch comedy together as a team, so anticipating their show done partly before a live audience with some live action bits, is a pretty damn fine summer treat. I can't believe it's almost here. The build up to broadcast has been killing this lowly unread TV blogger. (I have issues too.)

Here's some Michael and Michael reading:

Time Out - Black and Showalter on Their New Show

New York Times - Friends Who Wish Each Other The Worst

And speaking of a Michael...


I spent an mimosa soaked Saturday afternoon brunching in the audience of Radio Happy Hour at Le Poisson Rouge down on Bleeker, basking in the sight of Michael Showalter and a cast of vocal characters.

Radio Happy Hour is a newly minted monthly "old timesy" radio show (performed for podcast) done in the style of Hee Haw and Prairie Home Companion meshed into a comedic goofy mix. Special guests are invited to partake in interviews and scripted tongue in cheek dramas that are dirty, corny and just stupid fun. Norah Jones guested in June, Showalter was the July feature and Andrew WK will participate in August. More future guests should be announced soon. Showalter promoted M&M Have Issues, chatted about how his middle name is "English", discussed his professorial work at NYU's Film School and mentioned the big party blow out at The Bell House in Brooklyn on Wednesday night at 8pm before M&M broadcasts its maiden episode.

You can listen to Radio Happy Hour on their site and on iTunes. As of this writing, Saturday's Showalter show hasn't been uploaded, but if anyone is reading this - keep checking the links.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Getting Ready for Mad Men

It looks like Don Draper is up shit's creek without his sexy paddle this season. How many ways can I say I cannot wait for season three to start?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Jon Heder's New Comedy Central Gig


Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite, Blades of Glory) just signed on with Comedy Central to star in his own series, yet to be titled. The network ok'd ten episodes, and if it meets ratings criteria, could up the offer to about 90 shows. First episodes should debut in 2010. The show's producers are Will Farrell and Adam McKay. This should be pretty cool. (Source: NYTimes.com)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Cemetery Junction Trailer

Two funny men who created "The Office" and "Extras", plus one Oscar nominee. Warning: There might be a commercial preceding this trailer...or not.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

What's Outside the NYTimes Building This Month

From the new New York Times building, north side, our Digital offices face a billboard that changes every month to promote the hottest new show on cable. One time the bright ecstasy smile of Paige Davis beamed at our cubicles, boasting of her long awaited return to the tired old Trading Spaces. Then, the stern, weather beaten crows feet of fishermen from Deadliest Catch stared us down like we were a bunch of losers for sitting in our cushy seats, typing away like brainiacs while they road sea swells and wrestled sharks washed up on deck. Recently, Patrick Swayze's sexy hair and deep craggy face beamed from the billboard promoting The Beast. (I'd give him a silent good vibe when passing the window. I'm pulling for him).

Now, we have THIS:
This is Travel Channel's Bridget's Sexiest Beaches where Brigette Marquardt and her boobs search planet Earth for, yes, some sexy beaches. Here you go, fans of sexy beaches.

M&M Have Issues

Premieres July 15th at 10:30pm ET/9:30pm CT on Comedy Central.


Michael & Michael Have IssuesPremieres Wed, July 15, 10:30pm / 9:30c
Preview - Greg the Intern
www.comedycentral.com
Joke of the DayStand-Up ComedyFree Online Games

Entourage

Everyone keeps asking me when the new season of Entourage will begin. I tell them the same thing. "The hell I know." And I call myself a TV Blogger? Yes. I can call myself anything and get away with it since no one pays me (nor reads me) for the work. This is fun time for me. Love to write, but tend to lag on doing the research this time of year. It's Emmy season, yet I have nary a word on the build up to nominations on July 16th. Conan is dealing with shifting Tonight Show demographics, molding a younger audience into the day part, recalibrating advertisers viewership targets. Yet, here I am, waiting for Bruno to be released in theaters and thinking about whether or not I should buy my leased Honda and move to Los Angeles. Call it "too much on the brain" for television writing. Call it the lazy summer whatevers.

Thank the marketing gods at HBO for putting up billboards, because as I left a Starbucks on Sunset a few weeks back, I came upon this giant sign touting Vince and the boys for start up on July 12th at 10:30pm. Forget HBO press releases, websites or trade mags. This is how I get my info - taking shots of advertising with my iPhone and a Grande Americano in my hand.

Entourage is about to embark on its sixth season. Mild Apathy has seeped in here. The show has lost some luster in recent years. The Hollywood Reporter kind of agrees. For me, it's too many gorgeous female extras that make me feel like a thin haired, big boned ogre, and Jeremy Piven's Emmy Award winning scenery eating tantrums have tried my patience a tad too often. Seeing Vince's life come undone in season five added some juice; yet due to his gorgeous countenance and lucky star above, he didn't suffer all that much. Retreating to a tropical island and getting fucked between high and low tide gets really old. Snore....

I think what keeps me holding on is the hilarious pairing of Johnny Drama and Turtle. I also care about Vince and where his career will take him. So, I'm in it for the long haul.


Sports Side note Entourage Vent: What's with the Yankee worship? (Turtle?) These boys are from Queens - not the Bronx. There's no law on baseball allegiance among the NYC boroughs, but Queens is Mets territory. Boys from Queens who love the Yankees can be accused of being front runners, forgoing neighborhood tradition by rooting for the corporate team on the other side, having wins handed to them while boasting of entitlement. Wait a minute. Sounds like the theme of these lucky Bro-mantic guys from Entourage. Touche, Doug Ellin and Mark Wahlberg. Allegory does sneak up on me.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Boys and Girls Who Do Comedy

Dawn French hosted a fascinating series of interviews for the BBC a few years back with some of the most beloved comedians from both sides of the Atlantic.

There are familiar faces such as Tracy Ullman, Joan Rivers, Sarah Silverman, Russell Brand, Bob Newhart and John Cleese in addition to local British talent whose faces might not ring a bell on this side.

U.S. TV cult comedy fans may know Jimmy Carr, David Walliams, Matt Lucas and Noel Fielding who discuss the highs and lows of their work. French also interviews her husband Lenny Henry and her comedy partner Jennifer Saunders. It's a profound look into the emotional and social issues both men and women in comedy struggle with each day.

Here are excerpts from both series. (Double click on the video and see the rest of the series on YouTube's site.)


Boys Who Do Comedy





Girls Who Do Comedy

Mollie Sudgen

What a week for deaths. This site is turning into an obituary page. Mollie Sugden, star of the British series Are You Being Served passed away yesterday at the age of 86. Yes, the show was silly British kitsch, and is used as PBS's money maker during pledge drives. It's pretty antiquated and leans on farce and whoopsa-daisy antics, but I loved it and adored Sugden and her multicolored wigs.



Rest in peace, Mrs. Slocombe.