Many people I like and respect enjoy the show Grey's Anatomy. A lot. And that's fine. But I am not one of these people, mainly because I've never forgiven the pilot for flagrant abuse of one of my least favorite plot devices: "Hey, one-night-stand! Who'd have thought that when I kicked you out of the house the morning before my first day on the job, you'd turn out to be MY BOSS?"
The show's well-written, and of course I'm happy that a female show-runner has found such success and that nuanced portrayals of women in professional fields are now hot pilot season material. I just wish that the show didn't have that stupid opening credits sequence: Cosmo glasses! IV bags! High heels! Surgical booties! They're girls! They're doctors! They're girls AND they're doctors! Scandal! This is all totally irrational and unfair to a show that I know isn't half-bad. But did I mention that her new boss at her new job was also her ONE NIGHT STAND the night before?
Anyways, because we live in a Grey's-loving world, I don't get much opportunity to enjoy criticism of the show. Thus, I turn to desperate measures. Like most rational humans, I find the obsessive need for political correctness demanded by special interest groups a little, y'know, obsessive. The 3rd Annual Golden Lamp Awards, listing the Worst Media Portrayals of Nurses/Nurse-Practitioners, is no exception, mainly because they seem to have issues with the Sexy Nurse stereotype. (What kind of world would it be without Sexy Nurses? I ask you in all honesty. Is there any better way on the planet to awkwardly combine Mother and Lover into one delightful Oedipal cocktail?)
But the nurses do wail on Grey's Anatomy pretty good, and I can't help but enjoy that. Especially because I was reminded of last June, when I hung out with Grandma in the ICU, waiting for the doctor to come remove the surgical staples and give her the okay to go home. Eight hours we sat around, healing (her), eating pudding (me), and talking with the nurses, who were friendly, competent, eager to give me pudding, quick to answer questions, and delighted to inform us of all the free medical gear we could rip off our insurance company. (Grandma got a brand new walker out of it. She doesn't use a walker, but damn right we brought it home.) The nurses there took care of Grandma, taught me how to care for her once we got her home, and overall made the day as pleasant as possible. Meanwhile, the doctor whizzed in five hours late, approved Grandma's condition, let a nurse remove the staples, and whizzed right back out.
I was asking one of the nurses if she ever hooked up with doctors. "Honey," she said in a chicken-fried Southern accent, "Can you spell ego? 'Cause they sure can."
"So you'd never date a doctor? Even a cute doctor?"
"Oh my god! Cute doctors are even worse!"
This is really just a reminder to myself that if I'm ever in a position to pitch a network drama along the lines of Grey's Anatomy, "Nurses!" will get me in like Flynn.
They're girls! They're nurses! They're girls AND they're nurses!
I was just in an elevator crowded with network executives and one of them gave me the perfect opportunity to say something funny and I BLEW it! I could have said something hilarious and maybe they wouldn't have noticed that I'm wearing a baggy 1995 Gap men's sweater with Target jeans* and they would have instead noticed my keen wit and deft comic timing! And then they would give me a job writing for, I don't know, Regis, but that's all I'd need to begin my slow and stead climb to the top...
I have too much time to think, at this job.
*It's COLD today, and rainy. I stand by my fashion choices.
Well, did you say "Good night" to the security guard this morning?
I need coffee. And eight hours sleep. But SMRT-TV is up! Good issue, too. I should reread my letter from the editor after some caffeine, see if it makes sense still. I liked it when I wrote it. But I kept nodding off between paragraphs.
So I'm taking this geek test, and I consider myself a somewhat average nerd on the level of nerdosity normally, but MAN this quiz is asking questions I don't particularly want to answer. Ren Faire? Klingon? Role-playing games? Math camp? "Thrown a geek party?"
Wow, high school. You were a LONG time ago.
(And in case someone wants to give me crap about whether or not I've thrown a geek party since high school, let it be known that we're grading on a curve here. And I know what the far end of that curve is, and I am NOT TELLING.)
In four hours, my Wichita State Wheat Shockers go up against George Mason in the Sweet 16. This is a fine time for us all to appreciate some Wheat Shockers history (in case you think I'm making that team name up). It is also a fine time for us to enjoy the their mascot and logo, WuShock:
Yes. A man made of wheat. With a straw dangling out of his mouth for good measure. And a sweater.
Somebody took notes at Ronald D. Moore's improbable keynote speech at the Game Developer's Conference, which isn't the most coherent recounting out there but gives you a bit of insight into what was said. I'm pulling this out of the paraphrasing, though, because it backs up something I said a few weeks ago:
Philosophically, he wanted a drama more than s/f. No aliens, no time travel, no evil twins. "You're forcing the show to be internally driven." The story is about the character's lives, not something from outside.
RDM himself says that the show isn't very sci-fi! So, yeah, bitches! Yeah, people who don't read this blog! Take that!
Liz Tells Frank What Happened on BONES This Week: "The Two Bodies in the Lab"
I'd like to report an attempt on my life. BONES tried to kill me last week -- with CUTENESS. It still hurts a little, Frank. It's like they took my heart-strings and knit them into a sweater. A really cute sweater. Seriously, this episode just made me curl up like a baby cat inside. There ought to be LAWS against it. And those laws ought to be broken regularly. BONES is the new marijuana. BONES makes me high.
Open on: Our lesser Deschanel, trying to juggle hooking up with an internet date and solving not one, but two crimes -- one death-by-serial-killer, one death-by-mob. But Beau doesn't much appreciate Bones's hot-to-do-some-trotting attitude, and gets all nervous about Bones going off to dinner with Internet Boy in the middle of some body-examining. Bones is all, I'm going to dinner! I know kung fu! I'll be fine! But her attitude changes significantly when, while waiting outside the restaurant, someone tries to drive-by her robot brains.
Bones is all freaked out, understandably, but manages to keep it together enough to finally meet her mystery date -- in an interrogation room, under Beau's jealous, pained eyes. But Internet Boy's not the culprit, and Bones resolves to keep with the crime-solving, despite that whole people-wanting-her-dead thing. Beau agrees reluctantly. Beau's such a softie.
Anyways, Bones's robot brains prove their use and she starts solving both crimes like a mo-fo, which makes Beau grin in that proud-like-a-really-inappropriate-papa way. And at the end of her long day, he makes her TAKE HIM HOME so that he can use his sniper expertise to watch over her that night...
I'm sure you're thinking, Frank, that that's cute, but nothing earth-shattering. This is because you don't see -- NO ONE sees -- what's coming next. Beau, in search of entertainment, finds Bones's CD collection, which contains Tibetan throat chants, Kanye West, free-form jazz... and Foreigner. Knowing that there's never a bad time for Double Vision, "the classic rock supergroup's second album" (Amazon.com), Beau starts up the sultry "Hot-Blooded" and, oh, Frank. He starts dancing along and air-guitaring and acting like a big silly goof and Bones is like, oh, I'm a robot, I'm not supposed to be feeling these emotions, but BAM, I'm gonna high kick along to this song anyways and dance around and oh, now we are BOTH big silly goofs and we're gonna end up doing it by Track 2 ("Blue Morning, Blue Day") if this keeps up...
...Then, of course, stupid Internet Boy calls to say hey, and Beau still dances around while Bones talks to him, but afterwards they're slightly more awkward (JUST as cute, though), and maybe it'll take until Track 6 ("Double Vision") for them to do it... And then Beau asks Bones if he can get a drink, and she says sure, and when he opens her refrigerator, it (and he) get exploded. Whoops!
Beau ends up in the hospital, where he will not be able to convince Bones that the only way he can keep her safe is with sweet, tender love-making. He is, understandably, a little pissed. But then he assigns Special Guest Star Adam Baldwin to guard Bones (The Man They Call Jayne has been hanging around all this time, but he wasn't dancing so I didn't feel the need to mention it). They start running around solving crime, and Bones is close to Cracking the Case when it becomes clear that Jayne isn't likely to make any more appearances on BONES, what with him being the killer and all. Beau figures out that Jayne is a dirty FBI agent who arranged both murders to cover his own ass (or something like that -- I certainly don't care) about twenty-five minutes after the audience does, and gets the visiting ParaNerd to sneak him out of the hospital and to the nearest SWAT team.
Bones has, in fact, gotten her ass abducted by Jayne, despite an admirable bit of kung fu, and he's tied up her arms so that he can dangle her from a meat hook so that a bunch of dogs can eat her alive... Jayne's plans aren't very sound on an practical level, but it's not like this guy gets typecast as the SMART one, you know?
Anyways, Beau and the SWATers find them just in the nick of time, Jayne's brains are ka-plow-ee-ed with skill and care (Beau used to be a sniper, you know), and, oh, Frank. Beau rushes up to Bones, but she's all dangly and he got exploded so he can't just pick her up, but he lifts her up a bit and her bound wrists go behind his neck and it is what we call a Goonies Hug. And they hug and hug and it is so freakin' adorable and she cries into his strong, yet bandaged, chest...
WE'RE NOT EVEN DONE YET, FRANK!
Beau goes back to the hospital, and Bones is visiting in fancy dress clothes because she has a date with Internet Boy, but you can tell she wants to stay with Sniper Man, and sure, she leaves him to his TV after a few minutes of exposition about Jayne's poor planning skills. But then she immediately COMES BACK, having blown off her date (because who goes to dinner with another man after a Goonies Hug? Seriously!) and asks if she can watch TV with him. He is not an idiot. So they start watching THE GRAPES OF WRATH (date movie!), sitting as close as a man in a hospital bed and a woman in a hospital chair can. Two damaged people, clutching at the faintest chance of feeling whole again.
Man, they're gonna do it so hard in the season finale.
Good weekend -- relaxed, for once. Crashed Wizard World LA on Saturday, slept in on Sunday, caught up on my finances and read a not-bad book. Some good sushi, too, from a place I'd been meaning to try. Mmmm. Sushi.
However, not a whole lot of work was done. Super-behind! It's my superpower. But yoga tonight was canceled, so after some gym-time I'll be able to do some writing before watching Prison Break tonight. New Prison Break! I'm so fucking excited.
But I'm even behind on TV, and the schedule just won't relent. I still haven't watched last week's Veronica Mars. What's up with that? Not to mention Sopranos, The Office, Bones, TWO hours of Doctor Who, a week's worth of Daily Show...
But Prison Break! The pederast will fail to get shived! Robin Tunney will fail to not do something stupid! Pretty Lady Doctor will fail to make out with Michael Scofield!
I definitely have thoughts about V for Vendetta after seeing it last night, many negative, but I'm still processing some of them and others I don't feel are fair to mention before the rest of the living world has had its chance.
Just thought I'd clarify that, in case you thought you'd stumbled onto Cash Milliondollars (which is delightfully consumed with the March Madness analysis, if you're into that sort of thing and don't already read it). Me, I'm not nearly so devoted. Brackets are strange and confusing, and I wish to have no dealings with them. However, this year I'm caring enough to officially root for the Wichita State Wheat Shockers in this year's NCAA tourney. Why?
"The smart take from the strong." How great is that?
Wichita State plays on Saturday. In case you're afraid that the Madness has consumed even me, fear not -- I will not be able to watch the game, as I've grifted press passes to Wizard World LA. But oh, I will be checking the scores. And I will be eagerly anticipating their arrival at the Sweet Sixteen.
Heads-up for the loyalists: this site may experience the occasional technical delay in the next week or so, as we transfer it from shitbag Catalog.com to rockin' Dreamhost. Hopefully, nothing will be totally screwed up and we'll all go home happy.
If not, though, well -- it's not like you can see this message anyway. Blame the government and you'll be fine.
Liz Tells Frank What Happened On BONES This Week: "The Man On The Fairway"
So I've been kvetching about the lack of sweet Beau/Bones sexual tension this season, potentially ad nauseum. But no more! This week, the folks at BONES HQ hear my prayers, and grant unto us an episode that not only allows our two heroes to be totally adorable with each other, but also gives unto us delicious jealousy, Frank! Jealousy! The path upon which all Will They/Won't They tensions find real fruition! It's enough to make a girl share her tragic past with strangers!
But I'm getting ahead of myself. See, the folks at the Smithphonian are tasked with the job of sorting out the bodies from a private plane crash at a golf course, which is a national security issue because some of the people on the plane were Communists (the Chinese kind). Lesser Deschanel is totally uninterested in this assignment, but Deep Bass Boss's testes (and thus, low manly voice) are under threat by the State department, and he orders her to make the case a priority.
However, Bones doesn't really care about the fact that I don't want to come up with a new nickname for Deep Bass Boss, because it's been three weeks since she hooked up solved crime with Beau, and she's starting to get that deep low itch but good. Thus, when she finds a couple of unidentified, hacked up bone fragments in the plane wreckage which clearly weren't burned up on re-entry, she decides to investigate that crime instead, asking her legion of nerds to cover for her while she brings the case to Beau. Beau isn't impressed with Bones's love offering, mainly because his incredible sniper vision sees easily through her lies, and he teases her about how much she misses him because THEY ARE ADORABLE. But, just as things are getting Adorable To the Max, this sad-eyed guy steps forward to say that the bones Bones found might have belonged to his Tragically Missing Father, for whom sad-eyed guy has been searching lo these many years.
Sad-eyed guy is hot and serious and clearly haunted by his Tragic Past. It's Dude-chanel! And Dude-chanel has, like, magic powers and shit, because he knows all about Deschanel's own missing parents, and tries to use them to manipulate her into helping him. She tells him: "I'm not interested in bonding over my Tragic Past." She then proceeds to bond with him over her Tragic Past.
Beau, sensing that Dude-chanel's got an unfair advantage on his girl, takes on the case of the missing dad in his usual investigatorial way, strutting around, asking insulting questions, and of course deciding that Dude-chanel is a suspect. None of this really matters, of course, because Bones figures out that the bones she found weren't Dude-chanel's father, which means that Dude-chanel is yet again without a clue as to what happened to his dad. She tells him this in a very sweet scene at the end of the episode, where they have approximately this conversation:
Dude-chanel: My Tragic Past. It consumes me. Deschanel: I was trying to ignore mine, but that just made me a robot. So yeah, me too. Dude-chanel: Look, I'm too busy with my Tragic Past to investigate yours, but what about that flirty FBI agent guy whose cheek you pinched after admitting that you missed him? He seems single. Deschanel: Let's hug the sad hug of two people whose Tragic Pasts prevent hooking up. Dude-chanel: T'was never meant to be.
I might have paraphrased a little.
So after hugging Dude-chanel, Bones meets up with Beau and asks him to read the file on her tragically missing parents, in case he can spot any clues. This is, I'm guessing, the equivalent of third base, if only because there's a picture of fifteen-year-old Bones in the file that Beau scopes out with the eyes of a man who knows that he's this damn close to getting lucky solving crime.
But who can tell the difference, in this crazy world of ours? When violent men and haunted women stand side-by-side in the red and blue carousel of crime scenes?
Tired and cranky and discombobulated today. Coming off a truly stupid (and totally my own fault) bit of food poisoning, and I'd like that to be the sole cause of this mood, but it's more a general dissatisfaction, which never fails to frustrate. Does that make any sense? The answer could be no. I'm getting progressively dumber by the day.
I'm just venting a bit. I have no idea why it helps to do this online, but hey, any visitors to this blog have probably been coming by for a while. They know what to expect. They know, in essence, me. And me happens to occasionally be a bit of a whiner.
Here. I'll talk about things of (relative) substance. Yesterday, I watched a new West Wing for the first time in years, and it was WEIRD. I've kept abreast of show developments, in that peanut-gallery-not-actually-watching way, and so I knew that Every Actor In The Entire World worked on that show, but getting slapped across the face every five seconds with yet another guest star was more than a little daunting. Such a strange evolution, that show has gone through. The fact that it's come to encompass all points of view since the departure of the Sorkin singularity is such an artificial shift but occasionally a welcome one -- it's much less cooped up, much less dogmatic. As a result, though, I don't feel like the show is saying anything anymore. It's not a fair trade-off.
(However, gotta love the newfound plethora of strong female characters. Sure, the majority are blond and skinny, but at least they're not all secretaries.)
I freely admit that the only reason I TiVoed "The Cold"'s Bravo rebroadcast was because I heard that Josh and Donna would be making out, which they did, and it was a-fucking-dorable, a long time coming and perfectly timed. And the way it was played, open-ended and awkward, was enough to keep me interested in watching more, if only for academic purposes. (I'm planning on writing a nice long SMRT-TV piece on the Will They/Won't They/Should They? debate that plagues our nation.) Besides, it doesn't interfere with anything important. Like Prison Break. Six days until that show returns.
Another crazy weekend looms. Just, you know, stuff to do. Editing and writing and reading and partying and SMRT-TV and sleeping (who am I kidding?) and all that.
I kind of want to redesign this site a whole bunch. Figure out a way to keep the blog front and center, but spotlight ongoing projects a bit better. Maybe when the hosting shifts to a ISP that lets me use Moveable Type, I'll a) figure out how to use Moveable Type and b) design a better and stronger blog. The problem, as always, is that I'm so scattered around the net. Photos on Flickr, SMRT-TV elsewhere, writing every damn place. I might have something to upload to YouTube soon enough, too. I really just want a LizSiteCentral that can do everything at once. This is, of course, a lot easier to say than it is to do.
Speaking of things I've been doing, new Bookslut is up, complete with my column on Tristam Shandy. I have no idea what I'm going to write my next column on. If I can finish reading a book (any book -- my to-be-read heap needs to be depleted, is all) then I can go to Barnes and Noble with some gift certificates, and if I do that I can finally pick up a copy of In Cold Blood, which after reading would mean that I could finally see Capote, and then I could write a column on that...
...Or I could just write a column about V for Vendetta.
A beautiful sight. Man, I'm excited for V for Vendetta. Maybe not midnight screening excited. But certainly Friday-at-the-Arclight excited.
Yeah, I didn't post yesterday. What of it? You had a delightful LTFWHOBTW to hold you over, after all. Did you read it? I bet you didn't.
Today will be a Writing Day. First, I wrote a very professional email that will hopefully get me into a comic book convention for free. Now, I will write coverage. Eventually, I will write something that is actually writing. But isn't all writing writing, really?
No. No, it isn't.
I had real coffee this morning. It makes me feel like flying!
Liz Tells Frank What Happened On BONES This Week: "The Woman in the Garden"
I know, I know! You've been wondering, BONES? What's been happening? As far as you know, they could be doing anything. They could be finding the real killer of Abe Lincoln! They could be determining exactly what species of mammal Katie Holmes is gestating! They could be GOING TO THE MOON. And you wouldn't know any better, because I am a failure. Fear not, however! I'm now here! I have answers to questions! And the answer to that most important question, what did happen on BONES last week?
Well, not a whole helluva lot.
In the grand tradition of "that episode about hip-hop with all the black people in it" and "that episode about terrorism with all the Middle-Eastern people in it," we have "that episode about gangs with all the Latinos in it." Beau and Bones are investigating a body found in a trunk -- later revealed to have been initially interred in a local garden -- when someone drives by for a drive-by, allowing the driver of the car an opportunity to escape. But then they figure out that the driver of the car was one of those not-really-a-gang-member gang members who worked as a gardener for a high-falutin' senator...
Oh, whatever. I'm sorry, Frank, but the crime-solving is really boring this week. Trust me. You don't want to hear about it. Let me just summarize:
Gang members: Not all bad. Some of them just join gangs so that their sisters can get fake immigration papers and jobs as maids in the houses of senators.
Sisters of gang members: Prone to getting knocked up by sons of senators.
Sons of senators: Adorably clueless.
Senator house managers: Might accidentally kill a SOGM by pulling her off a ladder.
Gang members with young wife and baby son: Get deported after being caught with body of sister in trunk, but resolve to make a "better life" for family in home country, despite being forced back to land of crippling poverty and death squads.
Immigration law: Flawed.
Guatemalan Death Squads: Bad.
How do we know that? Well, that's why we've got ourselves a Lesser Deschanel -- to explain these things! Remember the pilot, when Hot Not Asian had to pick up Deschanel from the airport? Well, Deschanel was coming back from Guatemala, where at one point she'd been nabbed by her local native death squad and locked up for a few days without food, water, or hope. Girlfriend's got a little PTSD over this, which is why she gets really pissed off whenever Beau tries to intimidate the Guatemalans with threats of deportation, and kung-fus the hell out of one of those not-in-a-gang-to-help-his-sister gang members.
You'd think that the gang would just accept Lesser Deschanel's need for catharsis as a rationale for busting the ass of their leader and let it go, but no, they get all crotchety and put out a hit on her. Which leads to a delightful scene at the end of the episode: Beau finds the leader of the gang and goes all Angelus on his ass, threatening to do worse if anything happens to Lesser Deschanel. Gang Leader seems to get the message. And Beau doesn't even have to mention the fact that he was a sniper!
Just another day for our two solvers of crime. But one that brings them one step closer to each other's arms. So, a good one.
I was on cold medication while watching the Oscars, and that's what I'm gonna say caused the primal scream during the announcement of Best Picture. Not that I don't think Crash deserved the award... Oh, wait, I totally don't.
This feels a lot like when Akiva Goldsman won for A Beautiful Mind -- annoying not because the movie was bad, but because this now would validate him to make more, equally bad, movies. Now everyone loves Paul Haggis! Let's let him make ALL THE MOVIES!
Haggis: It will be completely different, I think. You know, it takes James Bond from the very first Ian Fleming book, "Casino Royale," when he becomes James Bond — when he gets his "Double 0" status, which means he has two kills, and therefore has his license to kill. But all the bells and whistles, all the things that Q used to give him, the gadgets, those are all gone. So you deal with the character as an assassin and what it feels like to be an assassin. And I ask the question, "Why does he treat women the way that he treats them?"
I'd be okay with that approach, except that it comes from a man who seems to think that sexual assault ain't so bad. Will we learn that the reason James Bond (who has never forcibly penetrated a woman's vagina with his fingers as part of a sick power trip which will later be validated by a heroic rescue I'm sorry I keep bringing it up but the movie won BEST PICTURE, for MacGuyver's sake!) loves them and leaves them is because Everyone Is Sexist? Or because his true love sneakily loaded his Beretta with blanks? Whatever the cause, I'm sure it'll be as subtlely and elegantly executed as the third-act appearance of Hillary Swank's hillbilly family. God bless them and their simple, simple ways.
I have been sick, the past few days. But my rage is back. It shall heal me.
Most of the text of Edward R. Murrow's speech bookending the movie is taken word-for-word from the actual keynote address he delivered to the 1958 RTNDA convention. The actual conclusion to the speech, after Murrow's line about television, used strictly for entertainment rather than education, being nothing more than wires and lights in a box, went as follows: "There is a great and perhaps decisive battle to be fought against ignorance, intolerance and indifference. This weapon of television could be useful. Stonewall Jackson, who knew something about the use of weapons, is reported to have said, 'When war comes, you must draw the sword and throw away the scabbard.' The trouble with television is that it is rusting in the scabbard during a battle for survival."
Six items that will not interest you in the slightest
I am somewhat tired, in part because I didn't get to sleep until around 2 AM, and in part because I watched some X-Files before sleeping and man, that show? That show was occasionally not what we humans would call quality. I was trying to watch this one scene with Mulder and Scully and a hospital bed (quick! guess the episode!), and maybe I was tired but there was about two minutes there when I was pretty sure that Scully wasn't speaking English. Maybe all the words were English, but they weren't arranged in any sort of pattern that resembled language. Dialogue!
But, despite this, I dreamed about solving crime with Mulder and Scully all night. It doesn't make for restful dreams. And I've checked every dream interpretation site out there, and no one has a listing for "solving crime with adolescent icons." Alas.
Random fact: It takes the average person 7 minutes to fall asleep. No telling if it's true. But certainly interesting. And here. Enjoy more random facts, why don't you.
I will eat salt-and-vinegar chips, but I don't think I will EVER like them. I honestly can't imagine who could. And yet, my department just bought a big case of them. They also bought Diet Coke, which I will consume with glee on a normal day. But it's very cold in this office, and I seem to be sticking to water today.
People have asked me what the deal is with Coca-Cola Zero -- not a lot of people, but enough. And fortunately, I at last have an answer! CCZ is Diet Coke for people who hate the taste of Diet Coke a little more than they hate calories. CCZ is the ultimate in science. But Coke knows better than to take away our scientifically/flavorly-inferior ambrosia. It knows better than to fuck with us addicts. Thus, CCZ and Diet Coke co-exist. For now, at least. May my parents never live to see a day without Diet Coke, though. The shock would kill them.
Time to go home. Maybe I'll grab a DC for the road. I am somewhat tired.