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Archive for October, 2012|Monthly archive page

Halloween In South Park

In Uncategorized on 10/31/2012 at 14:28

Springfield isn’t the only animated town to celebrate Halloween.

“Pink Eye” (1997)

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Tree House of Horror History Lesson

In TV, writing on 10/31/2012 at 14:07

You can make an argument for 1-10, but for me “The Simpsons” had 8 great seasons. Sure, even today you can get a decent episode here and there, but those first 8 were prime Simpsons. So let’s take a look at the first seven Halloween specials, the beloved Tree House of Horrors.

TREE HOUSE OF HORROR
Season 2, 10/24/90
Frame: Bart and Lisa tell each other scary stories in the Simpson’s tree house. James Early Jones has a voice cameo in each story, most notably narrating “The Raven.”


1. “Bad Dream House” – The Simpsons move into a haunted house.
Quote: “This family has had its differences and we’ve squabbled, but we’ve never had a knife fight before and I blame this house.” –Marge


2. “Hungry Are the Damned” – The Simpsons are abducted by seemingly friendly aliens, but Lisa suspects they feed on humans.
Quote: How to Cook Humans; How to Cook For Humans; How to Cook Forty Humans; How to Cook for Forty Humans


3. “The Raven” – The Poe classic is retold with Homer recast as the protagonist and Bart as the taunting Raven.
Quote: “Come here, you little raven!” –Homer

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“The Halloween Tree” by Ray Bradbury

In fiction, TV, writing on 10/29/2012 at 16:27

I recently concluded my list of 30 Halloween TV specials (read it here) and featured The Halloween Tree. It’s a great TV special, but it’s an even better book.

“It was a small town by a small river and a small lake in a small northern part of a Midwest state. There wasn’t so much wilderness around you couldn’t see the town. But on the other hand there wasn’t so much town you couldn’t see and feel and touch and smell the wilderness. The town was full of trees. And dry grass and dead flowers now that autumn was here. And full of fences to walk on and sidewalks to skate on and a large ravine to tumble in and yell across. And the town was full of…

Boys.
And it was the afternoon of Halloween.
And all the houses shut against a cool wind.
And the town was full of cold sunlight.
But suddenly, the day was gone.
Night came out from under each tree and spread.”

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The Ideal Costume

In writing on 10/26/2012 at 17:45

The ideal costume is like a dream—a vision that comes to you in a fleeting instance, only to disperse before fully materializing.

Optimus Light

There are concrete facts, however. Props are a must. Whether you are a 6 year old novice of the holiday, a 22 year old under grad ready to hit a succession of identically decorated bars, or a parent preparing to take the kids around the neighborhood, it’s always fun to wield a pitchfork, shoot a cap gun or raise Captain America’s shield to defect a volley of rotten eggs.

Likewise, additional limbs are always enjoyable. While six extra spider legs are overkill, it’s fun to swing a tail or some other new appendage.
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In Uncategorized on 10/23/2012 at 23:39

Great piece, slightly mirrors the book I’m working on right now.

This is the last straw, Amphitryon!

The answer, undoubtedly, is yes.

I have had this argument with my boyfriend a few times, and he just can’t come to accept it. It’s not fair, he said, to compare the music industry as we know it today to the music of the past, because we see all the bad music around us today whereas bad music of past decades has faded out of history and we don’t even know about it today.

This is a good point. However, if you take a cross section of the most popular songs of each decade, you can see from the top five hits of each year how the trend is really going. Take this list for example. It begins in 1946. We have jazz standards, some silly pop songs. Then we move to The Beatles, who, let’s be honest, were some of the finest pop music of the century. In the…

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Top 10 Halloween Specials

In movies, TV, writing on 10/23/2012 at 18:25

At long last we have reached my ten favorite Halloween specials of the season….

10. Freaks and Geeks “Tricks and Treats”

The Freaks Halloween special takes a serious hit due to budget restraints prohibiting the episode from being filmed at night. Halloween at 3PM is just awkward. However the typical Freaks merits are on display (Seth Rogen laughing, James Franco grinning, Jason Segal being super gangly), winning Judd Apatow’s high school dramedy the 10 spot on this year’s countdown.

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“Goon”

In movies, sports, writing on 10/22/2012 at 20:07

I recently watched the movie “Goon” starring Sean William Scott, Jay Baruchel and Alison Pill.

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Howl’s Moving Castle

In movies, writing on 10/22/2012 at 19:56

2004

In need of some witchcraft and wizardry this Halloween season? Check out Studio Ghibli Howl’s Moving Castle (2004), an adaptation of Diana Wynne Jones’ novel of the same name. Read the rest of this entry »

Happy 500 Tommy Haas!

In sports, TV, writing on 10/19/2012 at 15:56

Inspired by Tommy Haas’ 500th career win this morning and William Miller’s post here, I decided to take a look at one of the most interesting careers in sports today.

With a routine 6-4, 6-2 win over American Jesse Levine in the second round of Vienna’s Erste Bank Open, Germany’s Tommy Haas reached the illustrious 500 win mark. With Andy Roddick’s recent retirement, Haas is now only the fourth active player on tour with 500 or more wins, joining Roger Federer (871), Rafael Nadal (583) and Lleyton Hewitt (566).

“I knew for a few days that I would reach the milestone if I won this match. This was a big goal of mine,” said Haas. “In April, I was at around 472 wins and I knew it wouldn’t be easy to win another 27 or 28 matches.” In honor of the achievement, Haas was gifted a custom Fiat 500 by the tournament.

500f

Haas, who won Vienna in 2001, faces a qualifier in the next round and likes his chances to add to the win column. “For now I’m focusing on next year,” Haas said. “One of my goals for this year was to win my 13th title since 13 is my lucky number. Next year is 2013 and as long as I’m fit I want to play the whole year.”

Not many 34 year olds are focusing on “next year” in the world of professional tennis. In tennis, 34 year olds are about as effective as corpses. But then, Tommy Haas has had a career unlike any player before him.

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5 Scary or Halloween-themed Disney Channel Originals

In movies, TV, writing on 10/17/2012 at 18:15

I looked over a list of Disney Channel Original Movies last night, for fun, and quickly realized there aren’t nearly as many quality picks as I’d imagined. Of the dozen or so I really enjoyed, though, five of them were released in October and had ghoulish themes. What better time of year to revisit them?

HONORABLE MENTION
“Susie Q” (1996)

Susie Q

“Susie Q,” released right before “The Paper Brigade,” was one of the last two Disney Premiere Films, as they were called from the early 80’s, not nearly as frequent as the ’97 onset of DOMs. It was about this hot ghost from the 50’s or something, who could only talk to one kid, this 30 year old dude who plays a high school student.

“Susie Q” wasn’t that scary, but it featured the pink power ranger in a hot prom dress for 80 or so minutes. There was also something kinky about the fact she appeared in his bedroom randomly, and the kid’s mom couldn’t see her.

I knew I wasn't making that up............

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