Tuesday, August 12, 2008

WHEN YOU'RE HUTT, YOU'RE FAMILY



Tonight I saw a screening of The Clone Wars. It's the next entry in the Star Wars film franchise...also known as "George Lucas needs a hand putting his great-great-great-great-grandchildren through college". The welcome change this time, however, is that the film - which takes place during the intergalactic conflict between Episode II (Awful Love Story) and Episode III (Franken-Vader Screams Noooo!) - is all done in a highly-stylized CGI format. Sounds like a fair amount of fun, right?

Well, the film carried on in a pretty mediocre manner for a while, which shouldn't really surprise anyone. For all intents and purposes, it's a cartoon. But is it aimed solely at the kiddies?

Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to introduce you to my new favorite character in the entire Star Wars universe. His name...is Ziro the Hutt.



The folks at Lucasfilm have finally, after more than 30 years, created a character even gayer than C-3PO. He showed up towards the end, just when I was about to completely lose interest in everything happening onscreen. Allegedly he's Jabba the Hutt's uncle. You know, because every family's got "that" uncle. And just like that uncle of yours, Ziro is without a doubt the black sheep of the family. Instead of Jabba-green, he's a fabulous shade of purple. He wears a feathered crown. He's got weird, tribal tattoos.

And he sounds like Truman Capote.

I'm not kidding. I was literally laughing out loud. To clear up any confusion - Ziro the Hutt speaks English, not just that faux-Jive that Jabba uses. His personal base is a tower in the seedy part of Coruscant that has basically been converted into a gaudy, neon-adorned gay bar. Senator Padme Amidala - depicted here as the Star Wars-equivalent to Barack Obama - has of course heard of him, and drops by to perform some deus-ex-machina responsibilities on the plot. And of course, they sent the girl to deal with Ziro.



Needless to say, he's been a naughty, naughty slug. And who gets sent in to rescue of-course-she-gets-captured Padme? Why, that butch, combat-ready C-3PO...naturally. Upon arriving at the door to Ziro's Pleasure Palace, he delivers the best line of dialogue in the entire 90 minutes:

"Well this part of town certainly isn't my part of town!"

Despite his denial, it's good to know that some things never change when it comes to our prissy, nelly little protocol droid. And as for Ziro? He may be just another downright dreadful character; a cringe-inducing by-product of the misguided prequels - but he's pure camp. So much to the point that for a split second I thought it had to be a joke..."this isn't going to be in the final cut, right?"

But he cannot be undone, and I think the world will be a better place for it. It's about time we started laughing with Star Wars, not just at it...even if that wasn't the filmmakers' true intentions. Ziro the Hutt, please take your rightful place next to the Star Wars Holiday Special. You're in good company.

Friday, August 8, 2008

O TRUE APOTHECARY!



Happy Friday! As my lunch draws to a close, I feel the need to share a couple of gifts the internet has given me this week. And it just so happens that they represent 2 of my favorite things: Shakespeare and drinking. I wish I could say that I'm responsible for what appears below, but others seem to have beat me to the ingenious punch. I will however, take credit for the photo above.

I'll start with the Shakespeare item. I've faced the facts - Facebook seems to be all the rage these days. Some might even say that it eclipses MySpace in its addiction rate and its ever-growing arsenal of personal stalking tools. So it was only a matter of time before the (funny) intellectuals started to use it for their own amusement. Thus, like the "If the USA had a Facebook page during the Civil War" I give you William Shakespeare's FB home page (click to make it BIG):



Brilliant. One of my favorite parts:
"Hamlet posted an event: A Play That's Totally Fictional and In No Way About My Family"

Gotta love that historical and literary humor, right?

Next up - drinking! I found this on a site that tries to re-connect jokes with their creators. Apparently no one has come forth to claim this gem...which tempts me to call it my own...but I'm sure its rightful owners will find it eventually. Observe (the picture is just a bonus):



The Five Stages of Drunkenness

Stage #1 -- Smart
This is when you suddenly become an expert on every subject. You know all and greatly wish to express this knowledge to anyone who will listen. At this stage you are also always right. And of course the person you are talking with is very wrong. You will talk for hours trying to convince someone that you are right. This makes for an interesting argument when both parties are "smart". Two people talking, in fact, arguing about a subject neither one really knows anything about, but are convinced that they are they complete authority on the subject makes for great entertainment
for those get the opportunity to listen in.

Stage #2 -- Handsome/Pretty
This is when you are convinced that you are the best looking person in the entire room and everyone is looking at you. You begin to wink at perfect strangers and ask them to dance because of course they had been admiring you the whole evening. You are the center of attention, and all eyes are directed at you because you are the most beautiful thing on the face of the earth. Now keep in mind that you are still smart, so you can talk to this person who has been admiring you about any and all subjects under the sun.

Stage #3 -- Rich
This is when you suddenly become the richest person in the world. You can buy drinks for the entire bar and put it on your bill because you surely have an armored truck full of your money parked behind the bar. You can also make bets in this stage. Now of course you still know all, so you will always win all your bets. And you have no concern for how much money you bet because you have all the money in the world. You will also begin to buy drinks for all the people in the bar who are admiring you because you are now the smartest, prettiest, and richest person on the face of the earth.

Stage #4 -- Bulletproof
You can now pick fights with the people you have been betting money with because you cannot be hurt by anything. At this point you would go up to the boyfriend of the woman who had been admiring your beautiful self all evening and challenge him to a battle of wits for money. You have no worry about losing this battle of wits because you know all, have all the money to cover this bet, and you obviously win a fight that might erupt if he looses.

Stage #5 -- Invisible
This is the final stage of drunkenness. At this point you can do absolutely anything because no one can see you. You can get up and dance on a table; you can strip down to your underwear, to impress the people who have been admiring you all evening, because the rest of the people in the room cannot see you. You are also invisible to the person whom you have picked a fight with earlier in the evening. You can walk through the streets singing at the top of your lungs (because of course you are still smart and know the tune perfectly) and no one will think anything of it because they can't see you. All your social inhibitions are gone. You can do anything, because no one will know. And you certainly won't remember!



So there you have it. I hope we've all learned something today. I'm off to finish up my day, so I can enjoy my night - which will definitely involve drinking and may even involve some Shakespeare...depending on how much I drink.

Friday, August 1, 2008

ANOTHER CON BITES THE DUST



Comic-Con 2008 was by and large a huge success for me. We had celebrities people actually wanted to see, and honestly - everyone had a great time. Here's a recap of some of the fun that was had this year...


Setup and the booth just before the show officially opened. As you might be able to tell, Showtime was a major partner this year, helping Entertainment Earth promote our exclusive Dexter bobble head.


Celebs at the booth: Julie Benz from Buffy, Angel and most recently, Dexter!


Dexter was all over Comic-Con this year! Above is the double-decker Dexter bus, David Zayas stopped by the booth to check out his bobble head prototype, and the Dexter panel with Michael C. Hall, Julie Benz and others...including a special appearance by our Dexter bobble!


The Showtime party proved to be quite the event on Thursday night. Above left is me with Bianca and Rob. Above right is more of the EE crew, along with Kevin Smith (!) and host Mark Ecko. Thanks for the cocktails...I had more than my share.


Seth Green stopped by to say howdy to my bosses (they're friends), and I was able to snap a photo with him. I'm slowly working my way through the cast of Buffy!


Celebs at the booth: Randy "The Natural" Couture, the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Heavyweight Champion of the World. He's also starring in The Scorpion King 2, coming to DVD soon. The line was out of control, and camera crews were everywhere. He even filmed a segment (last image) where he had to flirt with 2 of our lady employees to get his own action figure. I didn't know him before, but he was a very gracious, polite guy.


Celebs at the booth: Scott Ian, the lead guitarist for Anthrax. Sadly even in my heavy metal days I never really listened to much Anthrax, but he was a very cool (albeit short) guy. AND he's a huge Battlestar Galactica fan, so I chatted him up for a minute about that. He's holding the bobble head we made of him in the first photo.


Celebs at the booth: The one and only Sam J. Jones, Flash himself from Flash Gordon. He was signing an exclusive action figure we brought with us for the show. A legend (if even just in his own mind) that really takes the time to talk to his fans. It was refreshing to watch.




Celebs at the booth: The Bench Warmer girls! Lisa Gleave (top left), Flo Jalin (Top right), Mary Riley (bottom left) and Michelle Baena (bottom right). I became besties with all of them. Mary and I are having drinks soon!


Sigh. I met Mike Nelson of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame - he's in the middle with me. I'm not sure who those other guys are, because I was too busy thinking about Mike. That may be the geekiest sexual fantasy I've ever had. EVER.


Two of my favorite comic book ladies - Dark Phoenix & Batgirl - brought to life by these two Comic-Con attendees. You go, girls!


The guy on the left is Peter Mayhew...the actual Chewbacca. I'm not sure who the d-bag in the costume is on the right.


Hollywood legend John Landis came and introduced himself to Jason (the president of EE) - telling him how big of a fan he is of us! Now that's pretty amazing.


The slug, the myth, the legend. Seriously - this is a full size replica of Jabba the Hutt. Holy shit.


These attendees were dressed up as the Lego video game versions of Princess Leia and Darth Maul. Wow.


Fave t-shirt of the entire convention.


The Bride of Frankenstein, and her lesbian lover as Link Larkin of Hairspray. Don't ask me for any further details...at this point you know just as much as I do.


Two of the most amazing gals! Heather works for the sometimes-annoying Freeman (the labor company) but has been lovely, helpful and all-around fun for the past 2 years. It's always nice to be remembered! Above right is Liz, our show contact and handler for the Bench Warmer girls. Sweet as pie, and she worked her little ass off for us!


My Comic-Con 2008 team, and what was left of the booth after teardown.



All in a crazy week's work!