Thursday, March 31, 2011

Fort Wayne Rejects Naming New Government Building After Four Term Mayor Harry Baals

Former Mayor Harry Baals must have lost some of his popularity these days. While wildly popular back from the 1930's until 50's, Baals was re-elected four times. And today he's leading an online poll to name a new government building in Fort Wayne, Indiana by a landslide. However, the current city leaders are rejecting naming the new government building after the popular former mayor because of the jokes that his name is sure to inspire. And that seems like a real kick in the baals for someone who helped to guide the city through WWII besides improving government and building a modern underground sewer system for the city.

Baals actually leads the voting by at least a 10-1 margin over the second place name entry. But, that fact hasn't fazed city officials who loath naming the new government center a name that is sure to inspire endless jokes.

Oh, c'mon folks in Fort Wayne, don't chicken out here. Show a little Baals here. You owe it to his family to name something major in your city after this popular mayor.

Interestingly, the modern day relatives of Baals now prefer to pronounce their name "Bales". You only have to wonder why, don't you? No word of whether there's a Harry Baals, Jr. or Harry Baals III. Who wouldn't want to carry on their father or grandfather's very proud name?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Classic DVD Review: ANZIO(1968)

Film legend Robert Mitchum stars as a war correspondent who is doing a story on a group of U.S. Army Rangers involved in the ill-fated disastrous beachhead at Anzio, Italy. Besides Mitchum, ANZIO is a significant film because it is a Dino De Laurentiis production, giving a glimpse into future projects that this film producer would make in future years.

Admittedly, ANZIO is a good, but flawed war film. The motion picture score is uninspired and hardly fits, especially the main title. And actor Peter Falk reportedly wanted to leave the production because he was so unhappy at the script, which he was given the opportunity to rewrite if he would stay. Despite, these problems the film was actually made.

ANZIO was the subject of some mixed reviews by both critics and audiences alike. But, looking back on the film, some like Roger Ebert find the film to be an "intelligent" war movie. And seeing great legends such as Robert Mitchum, Peter Falk or Robert Ryan at work in a film is always something to behold. All three are great actors.

As a war story, the disaster at ANZIO is a story that needed to be told. Allied forces suffered terrible losses at what they believed was a weakness in Europe to fight back toward Germany. But, Germany was quickly able to round up heavy tanks and cannons to pound the allies from mountain or hill vantage points. Operation Shingle in January 1944 initially involved 36,000 soldiers and 2,100 vehicles, however heavy losses from combined German and Italian battalions forced American, British and Canadian forces to up their strength to 150,000 troops by May. Dino De Laurentiis's vision of this battle seems a little bit low scale. Yet, the film is good enough as a war drama to recommend.

The disaster at ANZIO acted as a dress rehearsal for the much larger D Day months later, where much more planning, men and equipment were used to make this campaign much more successful.

The Bottom Line: Another respectable film from Robert Mitchum as well as Dino De Laurentiis. +++(Three stars, good. If you love classic war films, your library deserves to add this film).

Big Time Sissyass Stuff: Local CBS Affiliate Picks On Small Family Video Store

It's pretty obvious that Grand Video in Vancouver, Washington is having a hard time competing with Netflix and RedBox for so many new video releases. Stocking a small video store with all of the latest releases is very expensive. Further, new releases only tend to be hot for just a few days before starting to fall off in popularity as customers have an interest in even newer films. So Grand Video decided to add an adult section to the store where these films can be bought for very low prices and have a far longer shelf life than general release titles which just too quickly lose most public interest as well as costing much more. One new general title new release might cost 10 times as much as an adult DVD to purchase. Just staying in business for a family video store is difficult enough financially, so the decision to offer some adult titles seems only to be smart business at this point for Grand Video. Most small video stores have added some adult videos to their inventory long before this, probably as early as the 1980's.

KOIN head anchor Jeff Gianola acted all outraged about this little family video store renting out a few adult videos to stay in business. (The truth is this store should have started to offer these sort of films only about 30 years ago).

But hey, let's look at who KOIN's head anchor Jeff Gianola really is. There's a Website out there called "Portland's Worst Celebrity Customers" where a host by the name of ShanRock at Sewickly's pub paints a very unflattering picture of Gianola as a loud and abusive drunk who calls staffers "bitches" and other derogatory things after he gets all shit-faced on something called "Quiz Night" every Tuesday at the bar. Gianola sure doesn't mind treating the staff like total crap according to this account, so I guess it's only natural for him to also crap on some small time family video store that attempts to fight to stay in business while most small video stores are dying like flies.

Running a bar is tough enough when abusive customers like Jeff Gianola come in. But when Sewickley's has events such as a shooting outside the club, things get much worse.

On air, Jeff Gianola and his co-host Kelley Day both act like two uptight morality prudes, who would both do either CBN or FOX News mighty proud. Both seem so good at moralizing on camera about others, especially Gianola who acts like he so uptight like he hasn't had a decent bowel movement in about 20 years, which sure contrasts with the drunken bullshit he pulls on the staff at Sewickly's. But, the divorced and remarried anchor has his fans though. Probably because they haven't seen him drunk and abusive yet. He's a big time phony. Complete bullshit.

And the KOIN news report about Grand Video was complete bullshit as well. KOIN claimed that there's "community outrage" about the store offering a few adult videos. Yet, the only proof of this claimed "community outrage" that the KOIN report offers are two interviews with overweight women who both look like they like to hit the potato chips real hard. One of the women is the daughter of the former owner of the store. But, neither look like they're keeping themselves in shape by working as hard as some little store merchant who has to to stay in business. A little store means long hours, and usually little pay. Little stores are a tough road. Nothing like the big salaries that blowhard news head anchor's like Jeff Gianola can pull down.

Well, here's to you KOIN. You did it again. You got yourself another Big Time Sissyass Award only weeks after earning one for picking on some little Korean grocery store that offers adult magazines for sale just like Plaid Pantry and other convenience stores have done for decades. When you hire a few pricks like Jeff Gianola to work for you, you're bound to win a few Big Time Sissyass Awards. That's for certain.

Grand Video is doing what they can to survive. The family video store genre is a dying one. Some day very soon KOIN won't have Grand Video to kick around. Unfortunately, the crap will just keep falling out of the mouth of Jeff Gianola, though.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Maybe if Leslie Neilsen was brought back from the dead he could have made VAMPIRES SUCK a better film. However, if you just go along with the premise that a parody of the TWILIGHT vampire series to hang a few jokes on is good enough, then VAMPIRES SUCK is enjoyable enough. Much in the vein as better sight gag movies like AIRPLANE! or THE NAKED GUN, VAMPIRES SUCK attempts to parody the success of TWILIGHT with an absurd tale that really proves little real writing skill. Yet, the sight gags seem funny enough that the film is not a complete dud.

Maybe VAMPIRES SUCK isn't Oscar quality by any means. But, that doesn't mean that it isn't a reasonable enough popcorn movie to watch and enjoy and forget about. That's at least something.

The Bottom Line: While not much of a movie at all, VAMPIRES SUCK has a few worthy sight gags to satisfy. +(One star, poor. Yet the film has a few good jokes. Rent this for a few laughs if you must).

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Banned TV: THE AVENGERS "A Touch Of Brimstone" 1966

Back in 1966 one particular episode of THE AVENGERS created a little stir both in the U.S. and in the UK. "A Touch Of Brimstone" featured an evil club of pranksters who resurrected the infamous Hellfire Club. The Hellfire Club had roots in secret cult clubs in England and Ireland in the 18th century where men of some nobility would engage in evil pranks, wenching and heavy drinking. Although some of these clubs claimed that the Devil was their club leader, none of the clubs were actually used for Satan worship. They were simply private clubs were nobles would act with immorality much like some gentleman's clubs of today fulfill in perhaps more tame and legal ways. One of these original underground clubs came to an end in 1721 when King George I proclaimed a new law to stamp out immoral clubs.

THE AVENGERS episode involved about as much eroticism as was possible for TV at the time including a black bondage influenced costume with a spiked necklace for actress Diana Rigg as the "Queen Of Sin" with dark makeup and a later scene where she is assaulted with a bullwhip. The bullwhip scene had to slightly edited for British TV to satisfy the censors. However, American censors and ABC TV executives were much more unhappy about this heavily erotic episode of this very popular British TV program and refused to even air the episode in the U.S.

In many ways, the original episodes of CSI with William Peterson almost seem somewhat inspired by THE AVENGERS. William Peterson's intellectual patter and dryly funny wit almost seemed like a lift from the eccentric British elegance of THE AVENGERS. CSI also later introduced a reoccurring mistress character in the series. However, more than a few parent's groups and censorship organizations have been unhappy about any unusual and kinky sexual themes like this in the series as well. But, when THE AVENGERS tackled some of the same bizarre and strange sexual themes in the 60's, it was even more controversial.

However for 1966, the "A Touch Of Brimstone" episode of THE AVENGERS really pushed the envelope. It was not seen in the U.S. until years later on home video and DVD. Unfortunately, A&E which acquired THE AVENGERS series and distributed the episodes in the U.S. has decided to discontinue the DVD series in the U.S. in more recent years. However, many copies of this excellent 1960's British TV series remain in circulation on Ebay and Amazon.

While Diana Rigg was far and away the most popular female cast member of THE AVENGERS, several beautiful actresses played the sidekick of John Steed during the long 161 episode run of the series which actually originally ran from 1961-1969. Strangely, the last season featured a 20 year old Canadian Actress, Linda Thorson who was actually the girlfriend of one of the show's producers. They wanted her to be blond for series, however her hair was accidentally damaged in an attempt to color it that went horribly wrong, so she performed many of the episodes wearing wigs instead.

Many of the cast members of THE AVENGERS such as Patrick MacNee, Diana Rigg, Honor Blackman and others actually found their way into roles in the James Bond films as well. Today, Patrick Macnee is 89, Diana Rigg is 72, and Linda Thorson is 63. How time passes so quickly.

Interestingly, this Hellfire Club episode of THE AVENGERS actually inspired Marvel Comics own superhero series THE AVENGERS to run a TV episode that was greatly inspired by the British TV series.

If you get a chance, rent or buy an episode of this once banned TV episode. It comes on a fantastic box set along with THE HOUSE THAT JACK BUILT, which is a real classic about a mechanical house that entraps Emma Peel with one perplexing turn after another.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Liz Taylor Fashionably Late For Her Own Funeral

Liz Taylor must have had a reputation for being fashionably late. So as a comic last request, she was 15 minutes late for her own funeral yesterday at Forest Lawn. She was buried near her friend Michael Jackson. Earlier reports were that she was going to be buried next to her father and mother at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery. However, these false reports might have circulated to keep the ceremony private and confuse excess media. It probably also helped to confuse protesters from the Westboro Baptist Church who circulated Tweets and Internet messages to protest her funeral for "enabling" Gays because of work for AIDS prevention. Despite their threats to picket the funeral, Westboro Baptist Church members were a no show yesterday.

Friends and family of the late actress probably enjoyed a little more privacy than usual because of the confused funeral arrangement announcements. They probably appreciated that.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Zippo Lighters Look To New Markets

As smoking declines in the United States and is increasingly under fire with new legislation and social stigma, Zippo, a long respected name in quality lighters is looking to other products to brand their name. Recently the brand has marketed a brand of men's watches, but intends a line of other high quality products such as outdoor clothing, backpacks and other tough long lasting goods.

Will it work? Some products with famous names like Harley Davidson on them were huge failures in the marketplace and sold poorly. Bic pens even once tried to market a line of underwear. And Colgate even tried some food entries that were marketplace flops as well. Not every attempt to diversify pays rewards. Some just sap off company revenues and really hurt a company.

A famous name doesn't always help to sell products. Mario Andretti had an unhappy relationship with an American motorscooter distributor of Benelli products. In the last couple of years, Mario Andretti and PowerSportsFactory parted ways in an unhappy way with Andretti suing the company which slipped into financial problems and eventual bankruptcy. (BTW-The American distribution of Benelli motor scooters doesn't impact the Benelli motorcycles which are produced and marketed separately from the scooter brand). However, it is a blow to this famous brand name to see that neither the name of Mario Andretti or Benelli was good enough to market a high priced line of motor scooters in the states.

Zippo might well tread carefully here, if the history of failed products with famous names is any clue to use some caution.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Libyan Farmer Who Helped To Rescue American Pilot Shot By NATO Plane

Libyan farmer Hamid Mousa el-Amruni played a role in the rescue of an American pilot who's plane crashed due to mechanical failure. The pilot hid in a pig pen on el-Amruni's family farm and was given water and juice to drink while a local council supporting the antiGadhafi Beghazi National Council arranged to pick up the pilot in a car and return him to the American forces.

Well, what did farmer el-Amruni get for all his good deeds? Well, he got himself a little strafed up by some NATO plane of unidentified origin that shot up the area to protect it from Gadhafi forces. Now, he's walking with some broomstick that he's using as a makeshift crutch because of wounds to a leg and back. Oh, that's just great. You help some poor American pilot who just lost his plane, keeping him safe and helping to return him to the U.S. forces and all you have to show for it is some buckshot wounds. No good deed goes unpunished it seems. But, el-Amruni isn't bitter. On the contrary, he considers it just some unfortunate mistake.

As usual, the latest television war turns out to be complete chaos. Forget Gadhafi, that friendly fire can be just as bad.

Meanwhile, expect some farmer in Libya to start wearing a T-shirt that reads: "I Rescued An American Pilot, And All I Have To Show For It Are These Lousy Machine Gun Wounds".

Chris Brown Goes On GMA Rampage

Singer Chris Brown turned angry after some interview questions on GOOD MORNING AMERICA and reportedly broke a window with a chair and ripped his shirt off, leaving the show in a angry state. The singer had been asked some questions about his felony beating case involving singer Rihanna.

None of this angry outburst was caught on camera apparently. After his interview segment, the singer returned to his dressing room, and started the violent rampage. By the time that security arrived to control the situation, Brown had already bolted from the building. Brown also reportedly stared down a GMA segment producer outside the building on the street, but no violence took place as others got involved to attempt to calm the situation down.

Brown then blew off another ABC interview that was supposed to take place for their website. But, Brown later posted an angry message on Twitter, "I'm so over people bringing this past shit up!!! Yet we praise Charlie Sheen and other celebs for there(sic) bullshit". Brown later pulled this angry message down and posted a softer message to his fans about his latest album.

The singer is supposed to be on probation for the felony case. So far no new charges have been brought against the singer for this new violence or whether it could result in his probation being revoked as he was supposed to obey all laws as one condition of his probation.

Monday, March 21, 2011

CBS Might Want Charlie Sheen Back After All

As amazing as it sounds, CBS might just want Charlie Sheen back after all. There are rumors of some backroom negotiations taking place that could actually mend fences between all of the parties at war if the talks prove successful. Next to Hell freezing over, this seems like about the most unlikely news ever.

CBS might just feel that Charlie Sheen is good enough for ratings that they're willing to live with all of the crazy crap. But, that sure seems like a lot to swallow in my mind.

Whether, these negotiations prove to be anything will be interesting to see. How do you negotiate with someone to stop doing crazy crap? That seems beyond the scope of any lawyer.

Damon Wayans To Star In New CBS Comedy Pilot From TWO AND A HALF MEN Production Company

It's too early to say whether Damon Wayans will replace TWO AND A HALF MEN on CBS, but he's been signed to star in a sports radio comedy pilot produced by Tannenbaum Co.(TWO AND A HALF MEN among other productions). So far the new pilot is as yet untitled, but it will be based loosely on the inspiration of the life of sports reporter Colin Cowherd.

This may be a sign that CBS is beginning to look beyond TWO AND A HALF MEN, looking for a new show to groom into their schedule. And that's the big news here.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Why Gilbert Gottfried Will Bounce Back

Yesterday was another rough day for the Gottfried family. They are such nice folks and they were only hoping to get past last week's controversy. Gilbert Gottfried's wife, Dara, emailed me back late yesterday that "As you can imagine, it's been crazy here this week" because of a week filled with all of the fallout from some jokes that Gilbert posted on Twitter earlier in the week about the Japan earthquake that created a firestorm of negative news for the comic. Certainly his family and manager had some reason to be concerned when at Wizbang Pop, I mistakingly ran a piece on three SLATE parody jokes that were not written by Gilbert Gottfried. Gilbert was very sad that his own 12 jokes posted on Twitter intended to be read by his fans and other comic pals caused any hurt to anyone after they became more public. Gilbert Gottfried underestimated that Twitter is far more read than it is. Gilbert issued some heartfelt apologies for his own jokes. He is a very kind and decent man who only wanted people to laugh through a tragedy, and certainly not cause any pain to any person.

I can understand that the Gottfried family have good reason to be concerned for Gilbert's career and are making every effort to move past last week and get back to life as usual. By late in day, I was pleased to learn that my supportive emails as well as revised and updated Wizbang Pop feature "put a smile" on Gilbert's face when his wife read them to him. I'm happy to hear that Gilbert's happy. Last week's stress had to be terrible for his family.

Gilbert Gottfried has always proven himself to be one of the most durable comics around. And there shouldn't be any reason not to believe that Gilbert Gottfried won't quickly recover from a few jokes that flopped with some in the public. Gilbert has a history of bouncing back from some bad jokes to being bigger than ever. It's in his nature. When he was only 15, he quit school and began the tough job of trying to get gigs a comedy clubs. He's always been motivated to prove that he was born to be a great comic.

Part of Gilbert Gottfried's appeal has always been his new wave comedy style of being edgy and being a sort of shock comic. His shtick of telling timely jokes way too soon about major items in the news makes him popular with fans as being "out there" and being a comic rebel. Gilbert probably knows from his appearances on Howard Stern that about 50% of viewers just love him, while another 50% don't. But, that's fine. His 50% fan base are extremely loyal, and Gilbert Gottfried hasn't done anything this past week to erode that base of support. In fact, just the opposite. A lot of fellow comics and fans have rushed to support him and now feel a lot of sympathy for his very rough week in the mainstream press. And Gilbert Gottfried has far more loyal fans who love him than he can ever imagine.

Gilbert Gottfried proved his enduring quality as a comic back at a Friar's Club roast of Hugh Hefner in 1991, when only three after the 9/11 attacks he told an airliner joke inspired by the news and some in the audience groaned, "too soon". Gilbert quickly bounced back with famous version of "The Aristocrats" joke where his version of the joke quickly became the crown jewel of "THE ARISTOCRATS" film. Gilbert simply blew out the other comics, telling far and away the very best version of that joke in the film.

The fact of the matter is that Aflac, Disney and any other mainstream employer of Gilbert Gottfried over the years had to know for a long time what kind of comic he is. He's edgy and new wave. But, he's a great talent, so he's always been worth the risk. And Gilbert and his managers have always been real smart about his career. And most importantly, Gilbert Gottfried didn't have a Michael Richards moment last week.

Michael Richards allowed his own comic career to step into a tailspin cycle since SEINFELD ended. He had a chance to star in the smash cable hit MONK, but turned it down even though the role was written for him. Instead, he starred in a comic detective show that was a major flop on NBC that was quickly canceled. Former WINGS actor Tony Shaloub was a distant second choice to play the lead in MONK, took on the role, and became an award winning actor for the show. Michael Richards began low budget comedy club tours, but one of the shows went horribly wrong when he once went into a comedy "zone" and told some jokes that were perceived as being racist to the audience. This one event makes it hard for Richards to find much new work as a comic these days. But, Richards is still worth $45 million because of his days with SEINFELD and careful management of his money. So he's fine even if he doesn't work much since the unfortunate club incident.

But, Gilbert Gottfried's net worth isn't even close the net worth of Michael Richards. He's comfortable, but he probably needs to be able to keep working to provide for his family for at least a few more years before he considers any retirement. And I think that Gilbert loves to work as well. He loves to tell jokes. He loves for people to laugh. At 56, Gilbert Gottfried still has many more good joke telling years ahead.

The Aflac firing is a blow for sure. It's always a good deal to get royalty payments each time an ad runs. Now, that door is closed. Now, Gilbert has to look to open a new door, find a new opportunity. But, that's always come before. Gilbert's a master at finding new opportunities. He once landed himself on both SNL and then NIGHT COURT, proving that there's always TV. Hey, I hear there's an opening on TWO AND A HALF MEN, right now.

I can well remember how Gilbert once annoyed Arsenio Hall on his own show with his persistent questions about whether he was having sex with Paula Abdul or not. Gilbert Gottfried might not have been back on Arsenio Hall after that. But, he came back with some new opportunities. He always springs right back from any jokes that backfire. It's just in his nature.

Gilbert even cheated death at least once, surviving an appendix burst. And it gave him plenty of opportunity for more than a few self-deprecating jokes about his own mortality. And it proved that he always springs back from even the very worst. That was some heavy duty serious stuff compared to this small stuff this week over a few jokes that flopped.

Yesterday, when both Dara Gottfried and Gilbert's representative, Steve Honig, emailed me, it was out of concern for Gilbert. And both were incredibly nice despite their concerns for Gilbert after such a painful week. Monday will be one more day's distance between last week as well. People will once begin to see Gilbert as the great comic talent he is within a few days. Gilbert will bounce back bigger than ever. And that's a fact. You can bank on that.

Friday, March 18, 2011

SLATE Parody Claimed More Japan Disaster Jokes From Gilbert Gottfried

SLATE decided to have some fun with Gilbert Gottfried's problems last week when his Japan disaster jokes posted on Twitter fell flat with some people including Aflac. Here's some jokes that SLATE ran in their parody of the news :

"What do you get when you cross a tsunami and a nuclear explosion? Stir fry!"

"Why do the Japanese eat so much ramen? Because it's so easy to make: Just add water."

"Did you hear about the Japanese stock market? It crashed on purpose!"

Earlier this week, Aflac fired Gilbert Gottfried as the voice of their mascot duck. However, Gilbert Gottfried continues to have strong support from other celebrity comics such as Lisa Lampanelli, Bob Saget, Jeffrey Ross, Howard Stern, Joan Rivers and others who realize that his jokes were only meant to make people laugh and not to contribute to the pain of the situation in Japan.

RealGilbert(his Twitter account name) tweeted that, "I meant no disrespect. My thoughts are with the victims and their families". And Gilbert Gottfried offers up this advice, "Observe everything I do and do the opposite".

Female Actresses, Politicians Hit By Email Hacking Attacks

This week 22 year old Vanessa Hudgens contacted the FBI after some more nude photographs surfaced that were apparently stolen by some computer hacker. Now it appears that this criminal hacking scandal is growing where at least 50 more female stars, athletes and politicians may also be the victim of the same computer hacker where more very private photos and other information stolen from Emails is surfacing in the Web in the past few days.

Jessica Alba, Scarlett Johansson, Ali Larter, Christina Aguilera, Miley Cyrus and a number of other stars are said to be victims so far of these Email hacking attempts which led to some private material culled from their Email accounts being published on the Internet.

So far, every target of these hacking attacks appears to be females who are either celebrities of some sort including acting, singing, politics or sports.

Prescriptions Of The Stars: Paris Hilton's Herpes Prescription

Here's a copy of a prescription for a herpes medication, Valtrex, that belongs to socialite Paris Hilton that has leaked on the Internet. According to some reports, the discovery of a then-boyfriend who contracted herpes from the socialite led to his breakup with her. Some celebrity news stories aren't very good and don't always end with some happy news.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

More Carson On NBC

Carson Daly, that is. The really late night show featuring the popular former MTV celebrity has been renewed for an 11th season. It provides a gateway into a late night poker show that follows. While, not any ratings grabber in that coveted 1:35am time slot, LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY has provided a quality TV show even at this late hour with an intelligent look at music and other current media.

Growing beyond just some late night disc jockey status, Carson Daly has been able to grow his ratings this past year and provides a unique TV show that has well pleased NBC executives as well as viewers. The show is far better than it's late night time slot would suggest.

Unless you can stay up this late, then I strongly suggest you tape the show sometime and see what it's all about. Carson Daly's show is very good. Well worth checking out.

Gary Coleman's Utah Home Loses Value

Gary Coleman's Utah home isn't immune to the drop in real estate values in recent years. Gary Coleman paid $320,000 for the home in Santaquin back in 2006, which reverted back to Chase bank after his death. Coleman owed $325,158 at the time of his death. Now, the home has been reduced in price from $324,000 down to $237,600 where the bank appears ready to cut their losses and attempt to recover at least 2/3 of the deal.

Chase bank is so interested in selling the property that they are willing to offer up to an additional 3% discount on the property sale to a qualified buyer.

The estate of Gary Coleman admitted the house was in serious disarray following his death. His bed, as one example, was littered with such things as broken light bulbs, adult diapers, peanut butter and dirty laundry. However, all of these personal effects have since been cleaned up so you don't have to worry about falling to sleep amidst broken light bulbs. Yet, Chase bank is still having difficulty selling this wonderful celebrity property.

I always knew that Gary Coleman was a small dude, but who could have guessed that he wasn't even potty trained yet?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Gilbert Gottfried Loses Aflac Gig After Japan Joke Tweets

My good friend Gilbert Gottfried lost his job with Aflac doing the voice of their famous duck character after he posted some jokes about the Japan disaster on Twitter. However, Aflac should have known for a long time that Gilbert's shtick was to tell jokes way too soon. After actress Miranda Richardson hit her head in a ski accident, went into a coma and eventually died, Gilbert joked about once asking her when she would make love to him, she supposedly replied, "When I'm brain-dead". Gilbert Gottfried is a shock comic who tells outrageous jokes way too soon about tragic events. It's a comic style most comics will avoid, but it sets Gilbert Gottfried apart from other comics and gives him his own shtick.

Reportedly, Gilbert Gottfried tweeted that "Japan is really advanced. They don't go to the beach. The beach comes to them." and also that "I just split up with my girlfriend, but like the Japanese say, "There'll be another floating by any minute now".

Gilbert Gottfried may be controversial, but he was born to be a comic. At age 15 he stopped attending high school and instead went to comedy clubs to get himself signed to do shows. He was that serious about a career as a comic. Over the years, he perfected a number of comedy bits including his brilliant impersonation of Jerry Seinfeld and Dracula.

Gilbert Gottfried was known for being so frugal that he used to brag about having folding lawn furniture in his NY apartment. Gilbert Gottfried eventually married and has two children.

One Halloween, Gilbert sent me his photos from his kitchen of the pumpkin he was carving and we exchanged some emails. He's a very nice man. I'm happy to be one of his many friends and fans. Aflac is losing a great talent here. They need to reconsider their decision here.

For his part, Gilbert Gottfried offered an apology statement today.

Aflac also had a statement regarding Gilbert Gottfried that they issued. But, they should have known about Gilbert's comic style and should have just shrugged their shoulders at his Japan tweet jokes, and let business continue as usual. Gilbert Gottfried brought Aflac a lot of business. He was very good for them. They should be forever grateful to him.

Aflac does earn over 75% of it's profits in the Japanese market, so perhaps it was a business decision on their part to terminate Gottfried as their mascot's voice. Now, the legal question lingers whether the mascot is entirely the intellectual property of Aflac and follows them with a new voice or whether Gilbert Gottfried has some intellectual property claim here as well and cannot be legally replaced with someone doing an imitation of him. Hey, doing duck voices is serious stuff you know!

Monday, March 14, 2011

The Meltdown, The Devastation, The Charlie Sheen

The latest on Charlie Sheen's troubled life is that he missed out his son's birthday because his ex, Brooke Mueller didn't invite him to the party held at the home of Paris Hilton's parents. About 50 people attended this party, but not Charlie Sheen. And in a new "stealth" video, Sheen is seen wearing camouflage and has been giving clenched fist salutes recently as though he's some sort of bullshit version of a Fidel Castrotype Communist dictator or something. It's a pitiful sight.

But, last and not least, Sheen can't find porn star Capri Anderson to serve her an extortion lawsuit. Oh, that's strange. Sheen suddenly can't find a porn star if his life depended on it.

Some people sure work hard all day, don't they? Being a nut's a full time job it seems.

Dueling Naked Cowboys And Cowgirlsl

What's the world coming to when panhandlers(who prefer to call themselves "street performers") are allowed to sue in court if another panhandler rips off their begging for coins Shtick. Well, that's exactly what happened when Robert Burck attempted to sue former stripper(about 100 years ago!) Sandy Kane when she billed herself as the Naked Cowgirl. Burck had asked for $500 a month or $5000 a year in compensation from Kane, however a judge turned this down and will allow Kane to continue to panhandle(street perform). Another younger woman Louisa Helmond also performs as the Naked Cowgirl as well, wearing pasties in public.

Oh, thank God that we have courts in this country willing to resolve such thorny and complicated legal issues as some folks who beg for a quarter on public streets. My confidence in our legal system is only elevated now. I can rest assured each night now.

Fit To Be Royal:New Kate Middleton Bikini Photos

The web is all abuzz with some new bikini photos of Kate Middleton, the future queen of England. With her tight abs and trim and fit body, no one can deny that's not completely fit to be royal. Pretty darn impressive, say I.

Prince William hit the goldmine here. What a royal babe!

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba and Kate Hudson star in this very gritty and well executed adaptation of the 1952 crime novel by Jim Thompson. The novel was considered to be one of the outrageous 1950's crime novels not only at the time, for years to come as a sort of perverse landmark.

Sheriff Lou Ford (Casey Affleck) at first appears to be a respectable West Texas sheriff, but this mask is slowly and disturbingly torn away as he appears to be only a sadist and a killer wearing a badge. At one point, he's supposed to run a prostitute(Jessica Alba) out of town, but instead unprofessionally opts for giving her tough belt whipping instead and then has sex with her. He then begins an unprofessional, and somewhat sadomasochistic relationship with this prostitute, whom he later brutally beats leaving her for dead to frame another officer of the law whom he murders to make things appear as a brutal and violent murder scene. It's just one of many very disturbing and very violent images in this outrageous and gritty crime film. On one hand, Sheriff Lou Ford appears to love the prostitute, on the other hand he has a very sick personality, which only just degenerates into violence and murder as his life seems to completely unravel on-screen.

This film debuted at the Sundance film festival, and quickly won praise from many critics although many still had strong reservations about the violence and perverse sexuality inherent in this film. A parents advisory about the content of the film reads like a huge laundry list of outrageous sexual acts and violent scenes. However, for someone with a strong stomach for a gritty crime film, THE KILLER INSIDE ME is a really great film despite such strong content.

The Bottom Line: A very good period piece crime film that really satisfies. And there is the added bonus of actress Jessica Alba featured in a highly sexual role that might just please more than a few of her legions of fans. +++(Three Stars, good. Buy or rent this very good film. What a great adaption of an old 50's crime novel).

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Charlie Sheen Meltdown Update: Charlie Sheen Sells Out Rant Tour Tickets In Just 18 Minutes!

Incredible as it may seem, embattled actor Charlie Sheen has actually sold out tickets to some sort of bizarre antiTWO AND A HALF MEN firing rant show in Chicago and Detroit in just 18 minutes. The actor claims that $1 million will be donated to the Japan earthquake relief effort. The events are disturbingly entitled "My Violent Torpedo Of Truth/Death Is Not An Option Show", which really say doesn't anything much other than Sheen being both angry and crazy.

It's amazing that people want to actually hear a crazy rant show. It's amazing that actually want to pay money for this. At some point aren't most normal people going to get tired of watching some angry crazed substance induced meltdown of a celebrity?
Of all of the recent observations about Charlie Sheen, perhaps David Letterman had one of the most astute. Letterman noted that Sheen has been appearing on just about every TV show but his own.

Notorious Celebrity Cheapskates: Scottie "No Tippin' Pippen

During his 17 year NBA career with the Chicago Bulls, the Portland Trailblazers and Houston Rockets, Scottie Pippen cemented a reputation as one of the greatest and most admired NBA players of all time. However, his reputation with restaurant waiters, bar staff and others in the service industry was much less than stellar where he earned the nickname, "No Tippin' Pippen". There is even something called "The Official No Tippin Pippen Thread" on the Web where various waiters and others share their bad experiences with Scottie Pippen's cheapskate ways.

In Portland, some local restaurants claimed that Pippen would spend as much as $800 on food, but only leave just a $25 tip. And, at a TGI Fridays in Chicago, a bartender claims that Scottie Pippen and B.J. Armstrong came in with a group of girls, and Scottie Pippen bragged about "I don't tip anyone. I'm saving my money". Meanwhile, B.J. Armstrong was very nice. He spent $300 on drinks and food, most of it for others, and tipped $100 as well. He told staff at TGI Fridays not to take it personally about Scottie Pippen's penny pinching ways.

THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE's Steve Rosenbloom once noted that it's always something with Scottie Pippen, and it "always seems to be money". Back in 2000 when the Trailblazers were playing the Timberwolves in Minneapolis, Pippen wanted a local bar to run the Lennox Lewis-Michael Grant Heavyweight fight, however the bar wanted to refuse because of the $750 licensing fees for bar use. After an argument, the bar ran the fight that only lasted just two rounds, then Pippen felt ripped off and didn't want to pay. Finally, after another argument with Pippen, the bar charged him half price, losing 50% on the deal.

Horace Grant, a former Chicago Bulls teammate also affirmed that the "No Tippin' Pippen" reputation was well earned, despite the fact that Pippen was his friend. But, it was claimed that Michael Jordan was worse yet when it came to tightwad ways.

After his retirement, Scottie Pippen didn't do so well financially with his investmests despite earning $120 million during his career. He unsuccessfully sued a law firm that he claims lost $27 million of his money in bad investments and was in debt for a Grumman Gulfstream II, a private jet that he bought. One source believed that he could not withstand a $5 million lawsuit financially and really needs to play basketball again to pull himself out of his debts. But, that seems impoosible for a 45 year old player who had to cut short his last season of basketball back in Chicago in 2004 because of injuries.

Scottie Pippen's financial woes will never match those of Mike Tyson though. Although, he earning as much as $400 million during his career, Tyimpossibleson was thoimpossibleught to be worth only about $700 at one point because of his financial problems and bad mismanagement.

What happens to old basketball players? Well, they don't always retire wealthy in the sun somewhere, even when cheap as heck and penny pinching.

John Stamos And Rob Lowe Reject Replacing Charlie Sheen On TWO AND A HALF MEN

Although he wasn't formally offered the role, John Stamos has reportedly made some public comments that he really isn't interested in replacing Charlie Sheen on TWO AND A HALF MEN. Charlie Sheen was critical of Stamos just last week, but then the two mended their frayed relations somewhat with each offering kinder words.

John Stamos appears to be in the works to have some new untitled TV project of his own in instead. Stamos continues to believe that Charlie Sheen was an excellent presence on his own show.

This all only fuels more speculation of who can fill Charlie Sheen's big role in the show. Rob Lowe's name continues to pop up. Apparently, his agent has been contacted by Chuck Lorre's own agents. But, he seems to have declined this offer as well. His friendship with the Sheen family appears to be a major issue here.

This leaves Matt Dillon as a real possibility. The producers of TWO AND A HALF MEN loved his work on ABC's MODERN FAMILY.

At Wizbang Pop, we aim to be your fly on the wall, looking for the latest buzz to share. Stay tuned....

Friday, March 11, 2011


With the recent release of the 2010 version of THE GREEN HORNET with Seth Rogen, the new generation may not realize that the story has been around since the 1930's as a radio show and as a 1940's era movie theater serial. With the help of GREEN HORNET historian, Martin Grams, Jr. the original 13 episodes of the 1940 serial have been complied into a movie form for DVD by VCI. The result is an enjoyable 84 minute film history of this crime fighter, his faithful sidekick, Kato, and his luxury Black Beauty automobile.

Interestingly, due to the wartime tensions with Japan, the original Kato who was first known as being Japanese in 1940 was later identified as being from the Philippines, and then later Korea. His nationality began to ever shift over the years. But, in every incarnation of THE GREEN HORNET, millionaire newspaper editor Britt Reid is misunderstood by the police as being a criminal, allowing him to infiltrate dangerous criminal organizations and bring them down into destruction.

The 1960's TV version of THE GREEN HORNET, which only ran during the 1966-67 season, was a ratings failure for ABC despite the success of the BATMAN series which did far better in the ratings and lasted for three seasons. BATMAN was able to garner many memorable guest stars to play the villains on the show, unlike THE GREEN HORNET which also seemed like a more stripped down TV show in many ways.

If anything, THE GREEN HORNET TV series did work as an important medium to introduce kung fu expert Bruce Lee to the American public. Bruce Lee emerged as a major star in the years after the show was canceled. His popularity increased until his death. After his death, he became a cult legend.

The Bottom Line: The DVD of the original GREEN HORNET from 1940 is an important milestone in this 75 year old crime fighter story that started with the 1936 radio show. ++ 1/2(Two and a half stars, or nearly good. A good compilation of an old serial. Perhaps, not the best serial ever made. Yet, an interesting piece of history of the GREEN HORNET character).

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Others Performed Private Shows For Gadhafi Family

USA TODAY has reported that entertainers such as Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Nelly Furtado and Usher have all performed private shows paid for by Libyian dictator Moammar Gadhafi. Mariah Carey is deeply embarrassed about the news and has pledged to donate her salary to charity from her private show.

Gadhafi is thought to have an oil income wealth estimated at between $17-$20 billion dollars. He continues to spend massive amounts of money on a lavish billionaire lifestyle, even as his country is embattled in a civil war with rebel forces hoping to overthrow him. These rebel forces include elements that range from intellectuals and moderate democrats all the way to Al Qaeda Islamic radicals.
While some big name performers can rake in a $1 million salary for performing one show for someone like Gadhafi, many of his own people live in deep poverty or struggle with life in his country which is ruled with an iron hand. The massive appetite for oil from Libya of countries like the U.S. and China also only helps to keep dictators like Gadhafi in power for decades. Currently, world oil and gas prices have rising at an alarming rate as some oil fields in Libya are burning from the civil war.

Many stars perform controversial private concerts. Elton John performed at a lavish 2010 wedding for right wing radio host Rush Limbaugh, even though much of the politics of Limbaugh is sharply in contrast to the pro-Gay and more progressive politics of Elton John.

Parrothead leader, Jimmy Buffet has a happy go lucky sound. However, there wasn't as much joy when he got tripped up for performing a 2001 private show for former Tyco executive L. Dennis Kozlowski who was later convicted of misappropriation of funds from the corporation. Film footage of the lavish Roman-themed party with Jimmy Buffett performing only became a huge embarrassment to the performer who might have lost some long time fans for his part in the scandal.

Declining Cd sales and lower gross revenues of concerts due to rising ticket prices in a bad economy begin to make doing lavish private shows look more attractive to many performers. However, since the 2001 scandal involving Jimmy Buffett, entertainers need to ask more questions to avoid a negative backlash.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

No! God No!: Gary Busey On A Stripper Pole

Some things just aren't right. This is one of them.

Actor Gary Busey was photographed in these very frightening images taken during a cast party for CELEBRITY APPRENTICE last Sunday. Oh, thanks so much for sharing this with us TMZ. My life will never be the same from this day on now.....


The latest soundtrack album from the hit FOX TV show, GLEE, just dropped on March 8. And it may set a record for the most singles ever released from an album. So far 14 of the 16 tracks have been released as singles from the brand new album. One of the latest singles is Gwyneth Paltrow doing a rip-roaring cover version of the old Gary Glitter single from the UK, "Do You Wanna Touch Me(Oh Yeah). Gwyneth Paltrow also covers the old Prince single, "Kiss", as well as Fleetwood Mac's "Landslide".

The album manages to do great covers of Rod Argent's, "She's Not There", as well as covers of Queen and The Human League and others. In so many ways, this is a very satisfying album of well executed cover versions of songs. In crisp digital sound, this album brings new life to some old analog recorded classic rock songs.

GLEE has certainly achieved something very rare here. It is the first musical TV show that's actually been a hit. Other shows such as ABC's COP ROCK were complete disasters.

The Bottom Line: While this album will appeal mainly to kids, a few older rock fans like me certainly enjoyed Gwyneth Paltrow's excellent cover of "Do You Wanna Touch Me(Oh Yeah)", this is an excellent version of the song, virtually just as good as what both Gary Glitter and Joan Jett once did for the song. And the music video from the show is a real bonus. This album has many high points and few low ones. Very good. +++(Three Stars, good. Money well spent here. Buy this Cd!)

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Charlie Sheen Meltdown Update: Sheen's Contract Dispute And New Feud With Jon Cryer

Embattled actor Charlie Sheen is now claiming that he has a "Michael J. Fox clause" in his TWO AND A HALF MEN contract with Warner Bros. , where they have to pay him his nearly $2 million an episode salary regardless of whether he appears in the show or not. Warner Bros. claims just the opposite, that they have the right to fire him for due cause. Very likely lawyers and courts will have to settle this huge contract dispute.

Strangely, it was Charlie Sheen who replaced Michael J. Fox on his set of the hit ABC comedy SPIN CITY after Fox became too ill with Parkinson's Disease to continue work on the program. Fox was in the first four seasons of the show, but as his illness worsened, Charlie Sheen took over the male lead in the show for season five and six. The show suffered a big ratings loss in the final two years, dropping from #33 in the ratings with Fox as lead actor, to #56 & #78 with Sheen as lead before being canceled.

It will be interesting whether Warner Bros. and Sheen can resolve this huge difference of opinion without a court battle. My best guess is no. Look for the legal fireworks kids!

As much news as this is, Sheen made more news for opening up a new public feud with fellow actor Jon Cryer. Cryer has claimed that he has attempted to make contact with Sheen since the big news that he was being booted from the show. However, Sheen claims just the opposite, calling Cryer a "troll" and other derogatory terms. Sheen claims the other cast members "aren't trolls" because they've reached out to him recently.

Ironclad Performance Wear's Cycling Team

Ironclad is one of the premium brands of extremely high quality work gloves and other products. They have an Oregon based cycling team they sponsor to help promote the company that comprises some very fine athletes who seem like Olympic quality contenders in every regard who compete in races. One of the Ironclad athletes, Lana Pressey, 28, daily commutes many miles from Portland to Beaverton to work, in all types of weather, rain or shine, heat or cold, to build up muscle tone to win races. The members of the Ironclad team are as serious as they come about winning races and staying in top shape.

Many athletes of the Ironclad team actually live together, allowing them to workout together by going on constant training rides and keeping in top physical condition. As serious as they are as athletes, play time sometimes means enjoying a good beer and having fun with the rest of the team members. These athletes work and play hard.

But, cycling in all sorts of weather has it's own perils. Not only are cold snaps hard on the hands and other body parts, but cold and flu season recently hit the team sort of hard as well. But, you can't keep good athletes down for very long. Just like the Ironclad products, these team members are iron tough contenders.

From a sociological view, it becomes pretty apparent that the Ironclad team provides the members a strong sense of team effort and something to believe in. The Ironclad athletes are so devoted that the organization is much like a religion to it's members. They're just that serious.

With this much sense of team effort and purpose, you can't help but see how this team wins so many races.

Sometimes many athletes don't get all of the fanfare that some Olympic contenders do. But, many train and workout just as seriously as the top household sports names do. Ironclad should be very proud of their athletes. They have a serious and tough team of top contenders they field in any race they enter.

Monday, March 07, 2011

Jennifer Aniston Sex Tape: Want To See Her Cute Puppies?

Jennifer Aniston Sex Tape! Want to see her cute puppies? Well, that's what Smartwater is naming the latest promotional video produced by the company featuring some very funny moments. Watch and enjoy!

Sunday, March 06, 2011


KNUCKLEHEAD is a surprisingly funny interesting offensive little trash comedy. While almost universally torn apart by the critics, this film had me laughing at how outrageous it really was. 7 foot 485lb. wrestling star Paul Donald Wight, Jr. who is better known as The Big Show is surprisingly funny here in a really stupid role in this outrageous story of a down on his luck con man heavily in debt to a bookie who hires the gentle giant to solve his problems.

This isn't high art here, kids. You might even groan a little that I can even recommend something like this. But, this second attempt at filmmaking by the WWE is a lot better than many critics will lead you to believe. Sometimes you can a little bit of a gem in the trash, and this wacky little film is about as close as you might come. It's a pure popcorn trash comedy that worth a viewing for a few laughs.

The Bottom Line: An unbelievably bad idea for a film makes for a half ways enjoyable night of comic viewing. ++1/2(Two and a half stars, or a little better than fair. So horrible it's sort of good).

Big Time Sissyass Stuff: Georgia Parents Pimp Their Daughter To Make Used Minivan Payments

Well, of all the recent big time sissyass moments this one really takes the cake. Everyone knows what a fine vehicle those 1998 Dodge Caravan minivans are. Those are a vehicle that dreams are made of for sure. Who hasn't spent all day dreaming of tooling around in one of those beautiful vehicles? And you also know what a piece of crap many used car dealers are.

Well guess what, Georgia law enforcement authorities discovered an awful car payment plan that involved the couple's 14 year old daughter being traded for sex with the used car salesman in exchange for the $281 a month car payments. Now, wait a minute! The child's welfare and well being were being traded for the car payments on some lousy used minivan? WTF! There has to a be a special place in Hell for people that do stuff like that.

Naturally, the parents and car salesman were all arrested and only recently convicted. Both the father, 39 and the car salesman, 67, were recently sentenced to ten years in prison, if not daily anal rape from other inmates as additional punishment who will be totally outraged at their sick scheme to make the car payments by exploiting the young girl. The mother, 37, was sentenced to eight years in prison.

Well, here's to those folks in Georgia for hatching their sick little scheme to pay for some crappy minivan by trading their daughter to some old used car salesman for the payments. That's one hell of a twisted scheme and thinking. Just when you think an all-time Big Time Sissyass Stuff champ has been crowned, a new one comes along and knocks them right off the top.
(BTW-While this isn't the exact same 1998 minivan in question, it's a pretty good example of what fine transportation we're looking at here).

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Ice Bear's New 2011 Trike

Chinese motorcycle manufacturer Ice Bear is back with a new 2011 model trike. Snow Leopard is similar to many ways to a 150cc model that was previously offered, except for the addition of the larger Lifan motorcycle engine with a trick new dual exhaust system. But, the addition of the extra power does boost performance for this cool, but still somewhat underpowered brand of motorcycles. At some point, Ice Bear needs to learn that Americans would gladly pay more for their trikes with even larger engines that have true highway horsepower. But, for a city dweller trike, the new model still provides lots of entertainment for a price around $3500. And the gas mileage might even put those hybrid cars to shame, returning around 70 or more miles per gallon besides looking cool.

Snow Leopard features 13 inch 165/65 automobile type tires on the back, yet has a low seat height just under 24inches. But, with a more conventional front forks than the springer front end of the larger $4500 Road Warrior model, the Snow Leopard model is more like most other motorcycles with the exception of a trike design. Ice Bear specializes in trike designs, making it unique among other Chinese motorcycle brands. The conventional forks should give this trike steering much more like any normal two-wheeled motorcycle. Yet, the springer model has a definite cool factor that can't be matched by this more conventional trike.

Trikes have some advantages and some disadvantages. They are open like other motorcycles and offer a thrill better than an convertible auto can ever offer. Cornering can be interesting, though. But, with no having to put your legs out each time you stop, trikes can be easier to ride, especially for older bikers. In addition, trikes let you carry more gear as well. In the city, trikes offer you a lot more stability in emergency stops. Other bikes could leave all over the street if you to "lay it down". With appropriate care and safety, trikes can be far safer to ride than two wheelers.

Like it's big brother, the Road Warrior, the slightly smaller Snow Leopard model has a 5 speed manual wet clutch gearbox system. However, there is no reverse gear shifter like the larger Road Warrior model has. The Road Warrior still remains the top of the line Harley-styled trike that Ice Bear builds. Both feature a Harley-inspired gas tank with inset mph gauge. Both feature only this very basic instrumentation.

While Ice Bear continues to build these interesting trike frames, it looks like they might be using the Lifan motorcycle engines for some time. Lifan is one of the big three motorcycle manufacturers in China and has established a reputation for good quality engines that offer reliability if properly maintained such as oil changes every 1,000 miles. The high quality of the Lifan engines make a purchase of an Ice Bear motorcycle a safe choice among the many Chinese brands sold in the U.S. In addition, the Chinese government has been urging better and better quality control standards, where at some point in the near future Chinese motorcycles should be comparable with many other world brands.

Chinese motorcycles still have a ways to go with quality. But, Ice Bear continues to offer some very offerings with high quality and reliable engines. Now, all they need is some horsepower to go with all those cool trike frames they build.

Friday, March 04, 2011

Big Time Sissyass Stuff: BYU Bans Top Basketball Player For Having Sex

BYU that bastion of fine Mormonist education, has decided to ban a top basketball player only days into the huge March Madness basketball season because he had premarital sex with a girlfriend. The school claims that this is to uphold some sort of "honor code". Honor code? Isn't this the same cult church where members once disguised themselves as Paiute Indians and participated in the Mountain Meadows Massacre of about 120 settlers, only leaving just 17 children under the age of 7 alive? Maybe according to Mormonist reasoning leaving a few small children alive ranked as "honor" of some sort?
Interesting, the suspension only came after BYU Cougars player Brandon Davies admitted having sex with his girlfriend who attends college in Arizona, and is an athlete herself. Why someone thinks that it's school business that he's having sex sounds big time sissyass in itself. It shouldn't be any darn business of any school who's having sex with who. That's private stuff. Yet, Davies felt compared to share it with school officials. Oh, great. That was real smart.

At any rate, BYU seems more interested in upholding some wacky church rules than winning basketball games it seems. And, at 6 foot 9 Brandon Davies found out about this the hard way. He was one of the team's stars leading the team to a #3 ranking. Now he's off the team, and any potential future career in the NBA could be put on cold ice as well. Not only were his dreams trash-canned by the school, but the BYU team got trash-canned by New Mexico in a whopping 82-64 loss, only proving the school's stupidity here. The same conduct code also bans the BYU kids from drinking coffee or drinks with caffeine. One Pepsi or Coke could have got the kid kicked off the sports team as well. Every church attempts to ban something it seems, so Mormons long ago randomly picked coffee to ban. Why not pick something almost no one wants, like let's say Pauly Shore movies?

BYU's "honor code" also bans beards as well. Well, that would be real bullshit to any real biker guy right there. You can't look real badass looking like some accountant on a mean looking chopper.

Sleeveless shirts are another no-no at BYU. Yet, I always thought that's pretty much a given what those BYU basketball uniforms look like, isn't it? Even their enforcement of rules is selective here, isn't it. Yet, strangely that sacred temple underwear that Mormons wear to get into Heaven look strangely like a basketball uniform circa late 1888 style.

The BYU honor code also bans unclean language. Oh, you're shittin' me here! What no expletives when you accidentally drop something heavy on your toes like an anvil! Bright colors are banned as well, maybe because BYU thinks they might look a little bit too Hollywood gay or something?

Hey, remember how Fred Flintstone belonged to the Grand Order Of Water Buffaloes lodge, which has their own secret rituals. Well, guess what? Mormons have a secret handshake they learn so they gain entrance into Heaven. It's like Free Masonry gone wild here passed off as religion!

So you have to ask whether a religious cult church operated school has gained anything at all here. Sponsors and donors to the colleges are often attracted by winning sports teams. Does a school that deliberately throws games deserve their financial support?

Well, here's one collective Big Time Sissyass Award to BYU for throwing an important game just to uphold some funky old church rules. Mormon religion founder Joseph Smith and other major church founders were well known for not always keeping church rules very well themselves. Yet, the school decided to screw up their March Madness hopes and any good publicity they could have by going to extremes and suspending a star player for what could have been handled as a minor internal college matter. If that isn't the Webster Dictionary definition of the Big Time Sissyass, then nothing is my friend. BYU, you earned your award here.

BTW, strangely the loss of BYU to New Mexico is a sort of rough poetic justice for the suspension of New Mexico's Elizabeth Lambert for unsportsmanlike like conduct(read rough shoving) during a women's soccer game in 2009. Maybe, this is the nature of college sports.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Supreme Court Upholds Westboro Baptist Church's Protests

Westboro Baptist Church, the outrageous personality cult church of founder Fred Phelps, got a big seal of approval from the U.S. Supreme Court to continue their offensive protests at military funerals. The Supreme Court ruled 8 to 1 that their protests, although very hurtful and offensive, are constitutionally protected political or religious speech. However, the very same U.S. Supreme Court has a history of upholding laws against commercial speech that some find offensive such as obscenity or broadcast indecency.

Fred Phelps bizarre cult church organizes political protests at the funerals of servicepersons killed in peace police actions in Afghanistan and Iraq, claiming that such deaths are God's punishment for the U.S. tolerating homosexuality. The estranged daughter of Phelps claims the radical church leader has always been filled with hate.

The decision by the U.S. Supreme Court regarding the protests by Phelps cult church was hailed by the ACLU as a correct victory for free expression. The issue revolved around the issue of whether the church could be sued for damages because their manner of speech was offensive and hurtful to families of dead servicepersons.

The Supreme Court has had a historically strange set of views on free speech issues. The court has been very tough on commercial speech of an offensive nature such as obscenity even allowing those that deal in obscenity to be prosecuted under very tough organized crime laws as racketeers, except in cases where obscene satire with some political intent could be found. The late Rev. Jerry Falwell once sued HUSTLER Magazine over an outrageous outhouse satire piece that the Supreme Court ruled had broader free speech protections because they ruled that even obscene satire had political or editorial opinion protections. And in the case of noncommercial offensive speech, controversial groups as diverse as the KKK, Nazis, and the Westboro Baptist Church have all found the Supreme Court accepting the notion that nonviolent speech is politically protected, no matter how outrageous.

Some of the messages of Westboro Baptist Church such as "Thank God For Sept 11" only have to sicken most Americans. And the Supreme Court says that's legal. But not some radio shock jocks who tell sex jokes on the airwaves.

At the same time that Westboro Baptist Church wackos are now only emboldened to hold more hateful and outrageous protests because of this new Supreme Court ruling, entertainers are still subject to severe FCC and state and federal indecency and obscenity regulations. Sometimes in justice there is no justice.


TAKERS is an acceptable good crime drama featuring actor Matt Dillion as a a hardboiled detective bent on bringing down a group of bank robbers who appear to be living a life of luxury based off their ill-gotten gains. As far as routine crime dramas go, TAKERS is a decent popcorn movie but hardly a classic. Other reviews of the film tended to be mixed as well.

Certainly the script has many cliché touches here, and the characters seem a little flat to me and sometimes uninteresting, however this was a former #1 at the box office movie when released and only recently has found it's way to home DVD. At the box office this crime drama did much better than many other crime titles did this past year. So it's worth a watch.

TAKERS was originally named BONE DEEP, but the title was changed at some point to make the film more descriptive of it's actual content, I guess. And all of the familiar elements in a good crime story are here the car chases, the crime attempts, and even a Mexican stand-off for good measure. However, the film never rises to the level of terrific. But, it's more than watchable fare by far.

Matt Dillion is always a decent second tier actor. He may never draw in the big theater numbers like a bigger name will, but he can act, and he did his best with what's here with this lukewarm script.

The Bottom Line: While far from the very best movie you'll see this year, TAKERS is a satisfactory, although largely forgettable crime drama. ++ 1/2(Two and a half stars, or a little bit better than fair).

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Katie Holmes Suing STAR Magazine Over Outrageous Misleading Story

Lawyers for Katie Holmes have filed a $50 million dollar lawsuit against the STAR Magazine after it ran a front page feature intended to mislead readers into believing that the actress wife of Tom Cruise has a drug problem. It turns out that the story doesn't really address drugs at all, but instead talks about an E-meter device that scientologists use that has been the subject of FDA problems because of allegations that Scientologists practice medicine without a license with the device which they claim can cure most mental illness and other problems.

While many Scientologists use the E-meter, the STAR really stepped out on their own to claim that Katie Holmes has an addiction problem to it, or in misleading readers into believing that the actress might be possibly be abusing drugs. It was pretty irresponsible journalism at it's worst.

There were responsible ways for the STAR to do a story about the E-meter that Scientologists use, however for the sake of duping the public to buy their magazine, the magazine mislead to create purchases by using shocking headlines about Katie Holmes. That's playing dirty.

Magazine circulation as a whole continues to suffer because of the economy and the Internet. But, the STAR found an unethical way to attempt to boost their circulation here.

Charlie Sheen Introduces His Two New Girlfriends On TODAY

Charlie Sheen just keeps trying to top his outrageous behavior each day. Today, on NBC's TODAY Show, Sheen introduced two young women who he claims are his new live-in girlfriends. One is a porn star named "Rach" and the other a model named "Natty". Apparently, neither young woman watches the news or reads newspapers either, because they don't seem to be aware of little things, such as they're living with .....Charlie Sheen!!!

And apparently, neither girl seems concerned that this living arrangement involves three persons. Sure sounds like a menage a trois arrangement, doesn't it?.

With his outrageous and erratic behavior, the big question is how long can this living arrangement go on before Sheen goes ballistic and acts real crazy and one girl calls the 911 emergency line. Yesterday's performance by Sheen on the TODAY show was erratic and bizarre enough. Today was even more outlandish. If Sheen isn't on drugs and acted this strangely, then he's even worse off than first realized.

The final chapter of Charlie Sheen acting crazy sure hasn't been written yet.