Monday, January 31, 2011

MTV's Skins: What's Not To Love? Everything.

MTV will air the third episode of SKINS tonight. Despite the fact that its been universally panned, I gave Skins a chance. (2.7 on IMDB. 2.7! Try and find another television show with a number like that.) Spoiler alert: It sucked. Here is my story.

When I first heard that MTV was producing a remake of the popular British television show Skins, I said, "There's a popular British television show called Skins? What's it about?" Eventually, I found out that it was a show about teenagers getting drunk, getting high and getting laid. Sounded promising enough. The fact that it was popular in England and we would be getting a remake didn't sound all that promising. Especially since it was on MTV.

MTV's last scripted adventure was the Hard Times of RJ Berger. (I even surprised myself by remembering the actual name of that show.) Couple that with the fact that its an American remake of a British hit (The Office... and what else has worked?) and you've got a recipe for awfulness.

Oh, and then there's the fact that every promo (And dear Beth Gaga Shaggy were there a lot of promos) looked like utter shit. Sorry, it just did.

However, there was a Jersey Shore lead-in and I have a morbid curiosity to see any television show that is bad so that I can feel good about making fun of it. Did Skins ever live up (down?) to that.

From the opening scene to... every scene that followed, I hated that show. It was horrible, unbelievable and unrealistic. Plus, every single character was an asshole. There wasn't a single person on the entire show that I liked. The lead kid is a douche. The buddy with the shaved head wears sleeveless shirts. (His parents obviously didn't check the closet for the Sleeve Monster) Who are these people? None of them act like real teenagers. And what kind of awful parents would ever let their kids get away with shit like this?

Look, I have no problem suspending disbelief, but I thought this was supposed to be sort realistic. I just couldn't believe any of it.

Having been perfectly underwhelmed, I had to see the original which happens to be on Netflix streaming. Minutes after the American version of Skins had finished, I watched the first episode of the original.

It was pretty damn good. The characters were likable, and funny and seemed more like real people. Even though they were doing the exact same things that I found completely unrealistic in the remake. I have no problem with the Brits crashing a rich kid party, stealing a car, accidentally putting it into a river and walking away, but the idea of something like that happening in the remake is absolutely preposterous.

In the original, you could see how people would be friends with Tony. Sid isn't a goofy character. he's a nice, quiet kid. In the remake, Tony is a douchebag who I can imagine anyone wanting to be friends with. His face is infinitely punchable. In the remake, Sid/Stanley is a slimy looking retard with long hair in his eyes. Who gives a shit if he's a virgin? He should be.

Obviously, I'm not some old-school Skins die-hard who abhorred the remake as soon as I heard about it. I'm just a guy who stumbled onto the show and was abhorred at what I found. Its sad that the advertisers are dropping out because of the subject matter instead of the actual product. Imagine that.

The more that I read and the more that I see of the original and remake just make me scratch my head. Characters have been changed for no good reason. Story lines and details are confused. Its just a clusterfuck from start to finish. I'm not offended that they remade this. I'm offended that they made this.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Why Julie & Julia Can Suck It

On Saturday night I sat down to watch Julie & Julia with my best gal. Of course, anyone familiar with my body of work assumes that it was my idea, but I swear Marie A. is the one who brought the DVD home.

We watched Julie & Julia through the lens of two bloggers. One of us gets paid to make fairly obvious jokes about sports on a blog - the other writes about 18th century France for fun. We've both been blogging for years now. And maybe that's why the movie was absolutely maddening.

The performances were fine. We had both heard that Amy Adams' Julie portion of the movie sucked while Meryl Streep pwneffed the role of Julia Child. I though made-up-to-appear frumpy Amy Adams was just fine. They gave her a bad early 21st-century haircut and decided she would wear baggy clothes as her character ingested 3500 butter-soaked calories every day for a year. Personally, I thought Streep's Child was cartoonish, but that's Julia Child.

So all that - the main characters, the supporting characters, the dialog - was just fine. It was your normal, light romantic comedy with a little twist of telling two different, but similar stories at once. Good for them.

I HATED Julie & Julia. As a blogger, it offended me. It angered me. It made me want to look up the IP addresses of every single one of her commenters and fly around the country kicking their asses like the end of *spoiler alert* Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. This idiot housewife got a fucking book deal because there was an article on her in the New York Times? Not just one, but 60 literary agents and publishers called that day? Is this really how it happened? Why are people so stupid? She wrote about recreating a cookbook and multiple people with the power to do so decided that it should be turned into a book? Why would you turn that into a book?


In the end, the movie made me both mad and depressed. Don't watch this movie alone. Or preferably, at all.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Preview: NBC's The Cape

You can't cast dispersions on television shows just because the main character is wearing a cape. Superman wore a cape. And I'll be damned if I'm gonna stand here and let you say anything bad about him.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Movie Review: Black Swan

IMDB: 8.9
Rotten Tomatoes: 88%

Some Spoilers Ahead

I attended a screening of Black Swan last night. It was every bit as insane, real, weird and uncomfortable as a Darren Aronofsky would be. It was also as ballet-able as a movie about ballet could possibly be. But overall, it was just a really good movie.

Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis were great together and... well, you've probably heard by now what happens. Yes, it is as great as it sounds. They play all the emotions of your standard romantic comedy relationship - hate, friendship, love, betrayal - without any of the awful acting or unbelievable story. Also, they're both really pretty girls.

Portman's mother, played by Barbara Hershey, is creepy as hell. Completely different from Ellen Burstyn in Requiem for a Dream, but just as weird. Did I mention Mila Kunis?

Black Swan was nearly equal to 127 Hours in uncomfortable viewing moments. The main thing I took from the movie was how freaking painful ballet must be. If I have daughters, there's no way they're taking dance lessons. I think I'd rather have them play football. I also know, that I'll never be able to look at a hangnail again without fear that I might pull out a feather.

The most surprising thing about Black Swan was the number of laughs it got. Honestly, I think it came from how uncomfortable everyone was. I kind of wanted to tell people to shut up. I guess you could have laughed more during The Wrestler, but I think you'd have to be a little "special" to do so.

Black Swan is a crazy movie about a subject that is the least crazy you can think of. Portman makes it all work was she melts down for the entire film. Just a crazy performance. Crazy.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Boardwalk Empire: A 7th Grade English Paper Review

From time to time, friends of the site will contribute reviews of different programs or movies. Heck, in the future I might even contribute reviews or thoughts on stuff. Who knows!? Here's 1 Happy St's review of Boardwalk Empire, as told through the lens of a 7th grade English paper.

In general, I have enjoyed Boardwalk Empire. It has been slow moving at times, but also very exciting at others. I have also enjoyed some of the acting performances, while not enjoying a few as well.

Boardwalk Empire is a show that debuted earlier this year to much fanfare. It was said to be similar in style to The Sopranos, however I have not found that to be true at all. The pace of the show has been slow moving at times, like the storyline with the Irish immigrant lady who seems to be all over the place. Other times the show is pretty exciting, like the car ride between the convict and the crooked FBI agent. That was pretty tense.

I have enjoyed a couple of the acting performances like the guy with the messed up face. But I have not liked the acting performance of the guy who plays Jimmy Darmody. I'm really bored with that guy. All he does is stand around in his wife beater and he has a stupid haircut.

In conclusion, I have enjoyed Boardwalk Empire in general. Granted it has been slow moving at times, but also very exciting at others. I have also enjoyed some but not all of the acting performances. And that is why I have enjoyed Boardwalk Empire.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Jon Dore On Conan

Canadian/comedian Jon Dore was on Conan on Thursday night. For days I was thinking of a legitimate reason to use the video of his appearance on The Big Lead, but just couldn't fit it in in my usual awkward manner. (/twss) Then, suddenly, I remembered that I have a severely neglected blog about television and movies.

If you're not familiar with Jon Dore, he's the guy behind the television show, The Jon Dore Television Show. The brilliant, but sometimes disturbing program aired on IFC in America and my roommate and I discovered it about a year ago in reruns. Its finally available on iTunes - season 1, season 2 - and I'm hoping eventually it makes it to DVD.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Conan's Back

Conan O'Brien returned to the television set last night for the premiere of Conan on TBS. I watched. I had to be reminded by my girlfriend because I was watching sports all night, but once I was reminded, I made sure to tun in at 11pm. Hell, I even sat through the final 90 seconds of an episode of Family Guy so I'd be sure to see the opening. That's how you can tell I was serious.

The show itself was good. Its a much loser feel than other late night shows and that's what makes it so enjoyable.

See, I like Conan. I really do. I'm sure there are tweets somewhere about how pissed off I was that Leno was kicking Conan off the Tonight Show. I was probably one of the offended interneters. I'm a small part of the reason that Conan got another show. Totally.

But will I be a dedicated viewer? I doubt it. I'm sure I'll watch a few episodes when the NBA slate is done early. I'll definitely tune in Thursday night for Jon Dore's appearance.

I was never a loyal viewer during Conan's time on the Tonight Show or the Late Show. I just wonder how long he'll be on TBS. I'm sure it will be a few years. The George Lopez has been on TBS for at least a year and he's been fine without me seeing even a second of his show.

I guess I'm just happy to have Conan back on television, even if I'm not watching.