Well, what's new with me? I had a good time at a Halloween party last night, I'm in physical pain from my last training session, and tonight's festivities include some books, some dishes, baking the week's lunchtime potatoes, taking a bath, watching Alias, and GETTING SOME SLEEP.
My life is very exciting. I know.
I just looked at my comic book shelf and realized that my brother still has my copy of Watchmen. And he has not reported back on what he thinks.
He may not have liked it. Watchmen is a bit much to take.
Speaking of, the nerd boys are rioting over John Cusack being rumored to take the role of Nite Owl II in the upcoming adaptation. I try to give this stuff the benefit of the doubt, truly, but a) I still have nightmares about LXG and b) yeah, I'm cynical these days, and I'd lay good money on the fact that if you cast da Cusack as your leading man in an expensive superhero action movie, the second thing lost to the adaptation gods is the character's problems with impotence. Which, y'know, I LOVED in the source material.
(Almost as much as the pirate subplot. Which was, almost undoubtedly, the first thing lost.)
Next up: Minnie Driver as the Silk Spectre! Followed by Jeremy Piven as Rorschach.
(By the way, Alan Moore -- thanks. I've had to look Rorschach up twice today for spelling, and now I'll always know it.)
TV is good. Especially Carnivale, Joan of Arcadia, and... crap, what was that show... Okay. Just those two. And the OC comes back this week. And I'll never be able to watch it. But the dream lives.
Angel is trying my patience, and even though I know why they're doing a more stand-alone format and so on, I grow weary of the exposition. WEARY. Weary to the point of wanting to collect "some fucking heads" every time I'm reminded that Spike is a Very Special Ghost and the Angel Investigations staff made the monumentally stupid decision of taking on the running of an evil law firm when they're very aware there's a hidden agenda that will bite them in the ass come Sweeps.
But I'm not bitter.
Time for reading and dishes and other fun things. And then sleep. SLEEP.
Hey, blond girl. Yeah. You. The one sitting in pajama bottoms yawning and whining about being tired.
The one who keeps on saying that she wants to be a writer.
Think about Alan Ball. Think about Alan Ball, getting home from a long day of getting yelled at by sitcom divas, and going to his computer and writing the spec screenplay that didn't have a chance in hell in getting made. The spec screenplay he just couldn't. stop. writing.
Maybe even pull down your copy of the American Beauty screenplay. Give his introduction a read.
You don't think he got tired? You don't think he got frustrated? You don't think he deems those late nights totally and completely worth it?
Now shut the hell up and write your screenplay. You don't even have to write the scenes you don't want to write. You can write the fun scenes. Just get three pages down. Just three pages. And then, maybe, there will be sleep.
If you're very very good, that is. If you've been paying attention.
So I'm thinking about the winter movie season, which is usually full of fun and merriment for us movie geeks, and realizing that there isn't an awful lot I'm excited about. Thus making me wonder what I am excited about. Thus making me make a list...
What Liz Is Looking Forward To
Matrix: Revolutions Duh.
Love Actually From what I hear, it's not what it could be. But I'll see it for what it is.
Big Fish I don't hate John August, I like Tim Burton, I really like Billy Crudup, and I'm going to marry Ewan McGregor. Plus, myths, circuses, and all sorts of wonder. I don't think it'll be the best movie ever. But it might make me a happy Liz indeed.
Return of the King I'm going, okay? Just do me a favor? Don't mention... y'know. The spider. The really big one. Really. Don't.
Mona Lisa Smile Inspirational teachers, man. I don't think I'll ever get enough of them. They're the guitiest pleasure ever, but they make me so happy. I really don't see this one managing to fail me. Even if the feminist inside is less than thrilled to see a girl power movie written and directed by men. ::sigh::
Paycheck Yeah, the trailer for The Alamo looks good. But I'd much rather see this.
The Hebrew Hammer Here is the plot summary for this little movie you've never heard of:
Jumpstarting the much-neglected subgenre of "Jewxploitation" (ie.... completely neglected; this is the first movie to give Jewish-Americans [and Goyim too, I'm sure] the sort of entertainment that African-Americans enjoyed with 1970's blaxploitation movies like Shaft, Coffy and Dolemite), this is the story of Mordechai (Adam Goldberg), a young vigilant Orthodox Jew "superhero detective" who is recruited by the Jewish Justice League to team up with Esther (Judy Greer), the daughter of the JJL's leader (Peter Coyote), to stop the evil plans of Damien (Andy Dick), the son of Santa (Riehle), to eradicate Hanukkah from calendars forever, so that Christmas will never again have any competition (with an African-American hero, Mohammed, played by Mario Van Peebles, helping out in case Santa goes after Kwanzaa next). Can our hero, the "Semitic super stud", the "baaddest Heeb this side of Tel Aviv", the "Hebrew Hammer", possibly overwhelm Santa Damien's uncircumsized hordes and prevent such a decidedly ungentile gentile plot?
Three little words, friends: Best. Movie. EVER. And it's going to air on Comedy Central before going into limited release. So, the Best Movie Ever. For free!
Sure, the rest of the movies coming out this winter are going to leave me snoozing in my seat. But every once in a while, life works out okay.
So, millennia ago, my LJ friend Adrian took some pictures of/for me (primarily because I didn't have yearbook photos taken, and my parents complained that they lacked recent photos of me). This is the only one he's got up on his website, though there is another I like an awful lot, and might be the subject of a site redesign should I be in the mood.
But I was skimming his site today, and came across that one photo. And it's funny. So you should go check it out. And then vote for it. *g*
So the past week had its crazy moments, and then its quiet moments. And then the crazy again. The weekend was more social than most -- left the apartment all three days, seeing people and doing things.
AIDS Walk was exhilerating and exhausting. Mostly exhausting. But totally worth it. Just me, a new-ish pair of sneakers, five bottles of water, and my digital camera. Not to mention some good friends. And now we all know that the answer to the question, "Can Liz walk 6.2 miles?" is "HELL YES." A load off your minds, I'm sure.
The photos I took aren't great in terms of quality -- had to do more futzing than usual to get those salvagable looking decent -- but it was a fun way to capture the experience. Enjoy my crazy captions here:
And in case you haven't noticed yet, I made a minor change to the site, adding room for a Photos page -- which gives me an incentive to take more pictures and put more of them online. Because it's fun. And because I think some of you enjoy them. Which is great. Let me know if you catch any problems or screw-ups -- I think I've found most of the bugs, but there's always something.
So this was my evening. Downloading pictures from the camera, uploading them to the website. Listening to Massive Attack, chatting with a friend, drinking water and digesting a tasty dinner. Tomorrow, I'm going to the gym, followed by screenplay writing. Wednesday, there might be sushi or Runaway Jury.
And right now? There is sleep. Sweet, sweet sleep.
So the minimum donation the AIDS page will allow is $25. But here's what I'm gonna do.
If you email me and tell me how much you wanna donate, and that the check is in the mail, I'll reply back with my mailing address, put you on my list, and spot you the money if it doesn't arrive by Sunday.
It's a little more trouble, but hopefully worth it. AIDS Sucks! Do something about it!
Young, old, black, green, gay, Republican, gay Republicans -- we can all agree that dying of AIDS pretty much sucks. So this year, I'm gonna try and do a very small something about it.
As a participant in this year's AIDS Walk, I can burn as much foot leather as I like, but it does no one any good unless I'm walking for a reason. So support my lack of sloth -- and support the fight for conquering a disease that's infected 33 million people around the world, and taken far too many lives besides. Please, if you have ten or fifteen bucks to spare, stop by my pledge page and donate. I've set a fundraising goal of $100 -- which is four people donating $25, five people donating $20, ten people donating $10... Easy. Super easy. It's tax deductible and good for the thigh muscles. Plus, y'know, karma.
We could all use more karma.
Thus endeth the first -- and last -- time I'll ever hustle y'all for money. God bless America and parts of Canada. Amen. And thank you again!
Another entry on the To-Do list at which I have completely failed -- although I do have a few drafts started, I didn't write here yesterday. Did start the TeeVee thing, made good progress on Killer Angels, but the TV was on too early, and too much. I blame the Democrats.
The bits of the debate that I saw last night were interesting, but there seemed to be a lot of tearing down going on, and I'm just sick of that. But apparently I missed the part where Clark said he wouldn't attack a fellow Democrat -- they played it on NPR this morning, and it made me happy. I like Clark. I'll like him even more if he keeps his word.
But I also like John Edwards -- I like him a lot, actually. Any man who promises to declare his candidacy on the Daily Show -- and then actually keeps his word -- is just nifty. I wish his odds were better. Clark's positions and background appeal a lot to me, but Edwards I just like.
And I can still get behind Dean, who speaks plain and clear about what he thinks, and still seems like a strong choice. And Kucinich really does have the courage of his convictions, and while I don't know if he'd make a great President, I'd like to see him continue to have a voice. He might make a good VP, paired with a more centrist candidate. Or maybe he could just go right on Senator-ing.
In more shallow news, I didn't care much at all for this week's Angel. It doesn't help that I don't care all that much about Spike. Especially when he's misplaced his accent over his summer vacation.
The To Do list is not going well, I'm very sleepy, and my laundry still isn't done. I'm getting closer and closer to saying goodbye to the Wells Wing, this is going to be a lean month financially, and all I want to do is watch To Kill a Mockingbird, TiVoed off TCM, and never do anything productive ever again.
On the other hand, I do have 1602 #3 in my hot little hands. And as soon as I write this one scene for the screenplay, I'm allowed to read it.
For those who don't check out the Blog of a Bookslut regularly, there's a chance for you to help me out with a project -- please, meme it out as much as you can. The more responses, the better.
The original Bookslut post:
I'm looking for volunteers for the First Annual Hollywood Madam Book-to-Film Experiment -- an opportunity for you to contribute to the grand and lofty pursuit of scientific fact and theory (not to mention next month's Hollywood Madame column).
Is the book always better than the movie? What if you see the movie first? That's the question this experiment will put to the test -- but only with your help!
It's all very simple: -Email me at email@example.com to volunteer. Mention in your email if you've previously read John Grisham's [snark] timeless classic [/snark] "The Runaway Jury".
-Receive a random assignment to one of two sample groups: Book-to-Movie or Movie-to-Book. (If you've already read the book, your assignment is less random -- you'll be placed in the BtM group -- but I'll try and make them as even as possible.)
-If you're part of the BtM group, take some time over the next two weeks to read or re-read"The Runaway Jury" (readily available at Amazon, your local library, or in huge stacks by the front door of your local used bookstore). Then go to see the movie starring John Cusack, opening on October 17th.
-If you're part of the MtB group, see "The Runaway Jury" at your earliest convenience. Then afterwards, enjoy the eloquent, urbane prose of Mr. Grisham.
-Report back with your thoughts regarding the translation, including a 1-10 ranking of both the movie and the book, by October 30th.
The results will be posted in the next Hollywood Madam column, along with cheesy Excel graphs, my analysis, and your comments. The more people who participate, the more accurate whatever results we get will be -- so spread the word wherever you can and help us out! You'll get the warm, satisfied glow that comes from contributing to science -- not to mention Bookslut. And contributing to Bookslut? Does wonders for the complexion.
I really do love voting. Even before I could legally vote, I worked the polls in 1998, watching people come in and do their civic duty. From all walks of life, they came to say yea or nay. Every person had a voice. Every person had power.
I'm disappointed as hell by what's happened today -- it's style over substance, a crappy actor who can't even lie convincingly. But this isn't the decision of an apathetic minority. They thought they would have to take their time, counting the ballots. They thought they would have to wait to make a decision.
They thought wrong.
JOSH Tell me democracy doesn't have a sense of humor. We sit here, we drink this beer out here on the stoop, in violation about 47 city ordinances. I don't know, Toby, it's election night. What do you say about a government that goes out of its way to protect even citizens that try to destroy it?
TOBY God bless America.
Yeah. What Sorkin said.
But still. I think, this Friday, I'm going to get very drunk indeed.
So, since I've begun my new policy of one hour of TV per day, plus Daily Show, on weekdays, this means that Sunday is probably going to be eternally lost to the boob tube as I struggle to catch up with the week's TV. But I never really got anything done on Sundays before. And it is supposed to be a day of rest. So, now that I'm all caught up...
Angel Yay to the return of Harmony. Yay to kick-ass, bad-ass fight scenes. But the changes in the series are as huge as predicted, and I suppose I'd like them more if I understood them. There's something I'm not instinctually grasping about the concept of the forces of good being put in charge of an evil law firm -- them agreeing to the decision just strikes me as wrong, and the choices they're being forced to make don't have much resonance with me as a result. It doesn't help that I know the reasons for the reboot were the results of desperation, not inspiration. And I'm glad that my buddies at Angel Investigations are still fighting evil (though if they did it in a different time slot, I'd be pleased as punch) -- I just wish they were still AT Angel Investigations.
I occasionally drive past the hotel they use for the exterior shots of the Hyperion. It's on Wilshire, in between La Brea and Western. And though it isn't going anywhere, I miss it all the same.
Miss Match I want to write a longer entry about the ever-spreading virus that is ChickLit. But in the meantime, suffice it to say that this series is cute as a button, pretty in pink, a perfect fit for lonely Friday nights -- and disposible as Kleenex.
Joan of Arcadia Meanwhile, this show manages to be a couple of hankies worth of entertainment. I like it. I want it to succeed. And watching the theology fly around makes me feel less shallow and depraved than watching Alicia Silverstone chirple. So Joan gets herself a TiVo Season Pass -- but I'll watch Miss Match live, when I'm feeling very shallow indeed.
(Both shows, it's worth noting, fit pretty well with my writing style, and I could write a decent spec script for either of them. Here's hoping at least one of them survives the year, providing me with a fun summer writing project.)
Karen Sisco Carla Gugino is the pretty, and the show's just like her: stylish, sleek, and occasionally interesting. Maybe I'll TiVo this week's episode -- but I really wasn't blown away, and crime in general isn't enthralling me greatly these days. Not to mention the fact that "oh, she's a girl, but she's really quite tough, and it's not fair that she gets treated like a girl by her asshat bosses" got old halfway through Out of Sight, and I don't think it'll get any more interesting over the course of the series.
K Street I watched the premiere, Soderbergh nut that I am, for a few minutes, digging the Crazy Cajun's antics-- and then Carol's ex-boyfriend on Ed showed up, and I was too weirded out for words. Documentaries about politics are awesome. Fictional shows about politics are awesome. But I don't know how or what to think about K Street, and until I do, no dice.
It also doesn't help that the show is so very boring, indeed. And I likedFull Frontal.
Scrubs The big Elliot denoument in the premiere felt rushed, but it still kicked ass. Definitely the best show on Thursday nights, though something I watch only casually. Good catch, Maren. *g*
The new season of West Wing is still on my personal bubble. I may develop diabetes from Miss Match. And Ed's got one more episode to wow me. But that's a good overall POV of my wasted time.
Now, time to do something more interesting with the time I'm not wasting. New goal for the week -- write an entry of substance every day. Sars at Tomato Nation is right -- if you want people to read, you gotta have something for them to read.
So I'm going to work on that. Definitely tonight. 'Cause I got some writin' to do about politics.
So a new fall season is upon us, and because I always end up watching too much of it, it makes sense to compile some thoughts on how it's shaping up. There are some land mines I threw myself on, knowing full well what I was getting myself into (what can I say? I was really sick last week) and some things I tried and ended up really liking.
In the long run, it's more fun to think about this stuff than, say, the gubernatorial campaign. MUCH more fun.
This entry is dedicated to my TiVo. Mama loves ya, baby. Mama loves ya.
In approximate order of airdate:
MI-5/Spooks I've been watching this in two episode chunks with some friends, and it's always interesting, but never totally compelling. Not really a commitment show (hence its absense from the sidebar), but the Anthony Stewart Head episode was pretty bad-ass. Even though the ending made me whimper in pain.
Carnivale Ever since I fell in love with Six Feet Under and discovered that I actually like Sex and the City, I've gotten into the habit of watching the HBO shows. And ever since I cut my teeth on Star Trek: DS9, I've gotten into the habit of giving shows produced by Ronald D. Moore a shot (only three more months until Battlestar Galactica!). So RDM doing an HBO show? My favorite acronyms combined! And the show's a strange confusing thing, but I like the mystery and the slow pace. The production value is awesome, the period details are rich and absorbing, and Michael J. Anderson, as stated previously, rocks my world. No idea where it's going -- but it's quite a ride.
Alias I watched the premiere on Sunday. Didn't love it. The bored-monkey-on-crack approach to plot has always amused me, but I honestly don't think I have the energy to care. Might skim through next week's episode -- but when even the Vartan is boring, what's the point?
Two and a Half Men Saw it once, don't really want to continue. Melanie Lynsky guest-stars, though, thus rating it an eh-and-a-half.
Navy NCIS Mr. Jessica Alba, once upon a time, was so my imaginary boyfriend. So, half-delerious with fever, I suffered through a hideous Bush impersonator and The Lamest Secret Service Agent Ever for five minutes of mischevious twinkle. And, sated, I resolved never to turn the TV on at 8 PM on Tuesdays, ever again.
I'm With Her Eh. Cute. Nothing I'd watch without Nyquil, though.
Ed Okay, here's the thing. It's fine to resolve will-they-won't-they tension. I'm a big fan of taking that chance and exploring new territory. But you do have to keep it interesting afterwards. And last week's episode? Not so much. If last night's episode (which I'll probably watch Friday or so) doesn't pick up, that's one season pass I won't hesitate to cancel.
West Wing Yeah, during the low points of Season 4, you know what I thought to myself? "This show needs ten more characters, crass crappy-ass dialogue, and storylines that resolve with no emotional resonance whatsoever. And if two of the show's main characters could go entire episodes wearing exactly one expression and saying no dialogue, that'd just be icing on the cake."
Jake 2.0 I wasn't as blown away by this as the recapper at TWoP. For what it was, it was good -- but in this timeslot? Not a chance, friend.
Thursdays Keep your Friends, your CSI. You're giving me nothing, Thursdays! Nothing!
Fridays Oh, just great. Now that I'm on the cusp of actually having a life, you pull this on me? Thanks so much, CBS. You too, NBC. You too.
And now, back to work. But in Part 2, the Miss Match/Joan of Arcadia showdown (two shows enter! one show leaves! two shows enter! one show leaves!), the new season of Angel, the agony and the apathy of K Street, Karen Sisco, and quite possibly the complete abandonment of NBC's Wednesday lineup.
I write Melrose like it means something, like everyone's walked down that avenue halfway between Hollywood and Hell-A, their bare patches of skin absorbing smoggy sunlight. Noisy even on a Friday morning, roaring with traffic and blaring music and tiny hubs of commerce hocking commercialism. Fifty dollar vintage tees and body piercing. Sketchers and sketchy 'ho tops. Paradise.
Melrose is every alternative corner of every urban center, but stretched out thin, to the breaking point, along two miles of street. Every brand of freak is welcome. I tend to be three different kinds of freak at once, so this works just fine by me.
Wrote that maybe a month ago? But it still makes me want to go shopping.