Sunday, May 25, 2008

Milk and Race Car Drivers

Has any winner of the Indianapolis 500 ever been lactose intolerant?

Saturday Night Live Complete Season Reviews

I am checking out the reviews to the now three seasons available of the "Complete Saturday Night Live" and am amazed at how many reviewers are upset about the omission of the commercial break bumpers and more importantly of the video quality.

For people who "poo poo" the shows due to that have got to remember that video tape before 1980 on network television was considerably worse than in the 1970s. It's also more difficult (though not impossible) to make the video quality better.

It's a lot of complaining for nothing. Imagine if it was kinescopes.

The bumpers are an unfortunately loss, but at least they have the final one before the goodbyes.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Review

I saw "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" and have to say that the final result seems like there has not been a 22-year gap between the third film in the series and this one.

Many people thought Harrison Ford really old, because of his age (65), but I think he looks great. Ford always looked a bit haggard, even in "Star Wars" because of his big bent nose and various scars. He looks better at 65 than many of the "Star Trek" actors looked at 65 reprising their roles.

Even Karen Allen, reprising her Marion role not seen since the first film still looks hot!

Without giving too much away, this is obviously a revitalization of the series in order to make Shia LaBeouf ("Holes", "Disturbia", "Transformers") the "new" Indiana Jones.

The final assessment is that this film ranks as an equal to the third film in the series "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" (1989) and much, MUCH better than the second film in the series "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" (1984).

It is not as good as "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (1981), but that film is so classic, it would be so hard to duplicate its success.

Overall, the film is not an embarrassment and is a good addition to the franchise.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Clyde Flipside

I was reading an old issue of "Cracked" #52 (June 1966) and they had a four page article about "The Flipsides" featuring a cartoon janitor named Clyde Flipside. It says that it was to be a series airing soon produced by Krantz Films.

In doing extensive searches on the Internet, I couldn't find anything further about this film or series, yet Clyde Flipside looks REALLY familiar, like "The Flipsides" came out under a different name. Clyde resembles a cuter, more cartoony version of "Cracked's" mascot, Sylvester P. Smythe.

There is also a vampire character named Count Flipside, a singer named Flip Flipside, and a director named Cecil B. Flipside.

In looking up Krantz, all I could find was info about "Spider-Man", "Rocket Robin Hood", "Max, the 2000 year old Mouse", but nothing about this series.

Please help.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

William Castle Films

I love William Castle films. I never really paid attention to him until John Waters wrote an essay about him about 20 years ago in one of his books. Most of his films are pretty stupid, but they seem to hold my interest better than say, the Roger Corman films.

The gimmicks were all fun too like the Punishment Poll in "Mr. Sardonicus", and the Ghost Viewer in "13 Ghosts" and the vibrating seats in "The Tingler".

Even without the gimmicks, Castle films are great fun like "House on Haunted Hill" or even Castle's later "straight" films like "Rosemary's Baby" or "Bug".

I haven't seen "Homicidal" or "Strait Jacket" or "I Saw What You Did" (or if I did, I saw them a looooonnnnngggg time ago, so I don't remember what happens.), but I plan to eventually.

The majority of Castle's films are available on DVD, but not easily, so you probably have to order off of Amazon.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Superman with George Reeves

I recently watched a couple of episodes of the George Reeves "Superman". It's still as cheesy as I remember and it got me to thinking, why doesn't anyone do a superhero movie the way they used to do these shows. Superheroes used to be treated as really campy stuff.

Take for instance "Batman Begins". Everyone loved it because of how faithful it was to the latter day "Batman" comic books. I found it excruciatingly dull. Where are the big telephones? Where's King Tut?

Anyway, the Reeves "Superman" is quite stupid and quite entertaining in its stupidity.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Uncle Sam Magoo Review

Mr. Magoo has had a lengthy career from theatrical cartoons in the 1940s and 50s to three different TV series: "Mr. Magoo" (1960), "The Famous Adventures of Mr. Magoo" (1964) and "What's New, Mr. Magoo" (1977). There was also a theatrical animated feature "1001 Arabian Nights" (1959) and a lousy live action film starring Leslie Nielsen. Sandwiched between all of this were a couple of primetime TV specials, one which is excellent "Magoo's Christmas Carol" (1962) and one not so excellent "Uncle Sam Magoo" (1970). The only thing going for it is it is the last new Magoo show to be produced by UPA ("What's New, Mr. Magoo" was produced by DePatie-Freleng). The biggest problem with it is, although somewhat historical, it is also quite boring. The best moments are at the beginning when Magoo is arriving at the UPA studios. As usual, Jim Backus voices, but it is not enough to perk up the proceedings. Check out "Magoo's Christmas Carol" instead.

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Creeping Flesh Review

I bought "The Creeping Flesh" on DVD awhile back and finally got around to watching it. It is a horror movie made in 1972 and stars Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing, but it is not by Hammer.

It's actually quite good, but may seem quaint by today's standards. It has a good twist ending which I partially predicted, and that's why it was fun.

Cushing and Lee are always fascinating together and I am trying to get all of their appearances together. Usually they were Van Helsing and Dracula, but the non-Dracula films like "Horror Express" or "Hound of the Baskervilles" are much more interesting.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Humor Magazines

I am exchanging emails with a person who collects humor magazines as I do. I got to thinking if I was to recommend the cream of the crop to a novice to humor magazine collection, what would I recommend?

Here are my choices:

Mad - 1952-1980
Crazy - 1973-1976; 1980-1983
Sick - 1960-1968
Cracked - 1969-1980
National Lampoon - 1970-1980
Help! - any issue
Trump - any issue
Humbug - any issue
Snafu - any issue
Bananas - any issue

This is not to say I don't like other stuff, this is what I find to be the best. I still buy and read "Mad" to this day, but really only for Sergio Aragones and Al Jaffee and the fact that it's the only one left. Incidentally, I started reading "Mad" in 1974.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Archie Fan Club Button, Part 2

Here's my first experience adding an image to my blog. This is a quickie photo taken with my webcam that shows the three different Archie Fan Club button designs. I'll try to do a photo more often with my blog posts. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Golden Wonder Crisps

Well, you learn something every day. On a recent DVD of "Little Britain", a joke was made about Golden Wonder Crisps. Being a true American, I had never heard of that brand, so I looked it up.

On, they talk about the products history and how it developed from 1947 to the present and have some adverts from the past. Great stuff!

Anyway, I guess we're just stuck here with Pringle's and Lay's in the good ol' USA!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

"Iron Man" Review

Ok, I didn't think I would like this one, but I loved it!! It's just the right amount of humor and seriousness to make a superhero movie work. I didn't want to see it because of being disappointed with too many superhero movies in recent years ("The Fantastic Four" movies, "Ghost Rider", "Daredevil", "Hulk", etc.)

I wasn't even a big fan of the recent "Batman Begins". I know my opinion is a minority opinion, but I found it boring. In fact, when people ask me my favorite Batman movie, I usually say, "The one with Adam West where he wrestles the rubber shark and can't find a place to dispose of a bomb!" Of the more recent ones, I tend to like the Val Kilmer one.

Anyway, "Iron Man" was a surprise because I'm not a huge fan of Robert Downey, Jr., and thought he was a bad choice. I've changed my mind. Also, the director directed "Elf" before, but he did a great job here, too!

There are a couple of funny cameos and some great lines and apart from suspending your belief on some physics issues, it is a great ride. Must see.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Bee Gees

I always kinda hated The Bee Gees with their falsetto singing. Lately, I've been going to the library and checking out various music CDs of artists that I have ignored over the years such as Traffic, Genesis and The Bee Gees.

The Bee Gees album was a greatest hits collection called "Number Ones". I have to say that their earlier stuff from the 60s on the collection is quite good.

Listening again to their blockbuster 70s hits in hindsight is good too, unlike when they were played incessantly on the radio from 1977-79. The composing and orchestration are great.

The problem still is with the singing. Who told The Bee Gees to sing this way? I guess it gave them an identity, but it still is quite annoying 30 years on.

Finally, I will take this opportunity to let everyone know that Andy Gibb was NEVER a member of The Bee Gees. In fact, the rumor persists on non-Bee Gees project. I was watching an animation documentary by the people who did the opening credits animation for the film "Grease" and they said Andy Gibb wrote the song. Andy had nothing to do with this song, as it was Barry Gibb who wrote it (Frankie Valli sang it, incidentally).

Monday, May 05, 2008

Underdog help

Just FYI. I am still feverishly working on my Total TeleVision book and would love to know if you have any rare artifacts from the following shows:

King Leonardo
Tooter Turtle
The Hunter
Go-Go Gophers
Tennessee Tuxedo
Klondike Kat
Commander McBragg
The Beagles
The Sing-a-long Family
Cauliflower Cabby
Gene Hattree
The Colossal Show

I am especially interested in scans of original art or scripts or photos of memorabilia particularly from the 1960s. Email me here or at if you have anything of interest.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Archie Fan Club Button

I realized that there are not two, but THREE Archie Fan Club buttons produced over the years.

FYI, here's the date range for the Archie buttons:

1. 1950s-1971 - Says "Member Archie Club" with Archie in a bow-tie.

2. 1972-1973 - Says "Member Archie Club" with Archie's head only in updated drawing.

3. 1974-1990s - Says "Official Member Archie Club" with Archie's head only and "Archie Club" in balloon lettering.

#3 is easy to find. #1 is a little bit harder, but it's #2 that's the difficult one as it was only available for two years!!

I finally purchased #2, so now my collection is complete!!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Money money money

I need money. Doesn't everyone? It sucks because just when I start taking control of my money situation I can't seem to hold down a job to save my life, and I'm not that much in debt anymore. It's just that I can't pay it completely off because no one wants to keep me as an employee.

I'm a good guy and that's the problem. It seems today that you have to be a complete asshole to make it in the world monetarily.

Oh well. Life goes on. I'll pay my debts, but it'll take a couple more years. If I had a decent job, I could pay it off now.

Time will tell....