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sd dude

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  1. John's story on WWE was a welcome surprise and fairly well executed. One detail that surprised me very much in its absence from the segment was the lack of mention of Chris Benoit, arguably one of the most horrific and tragic stories of a professional wrestler meeting a premature end. For anyone who does not know, near the height of a very popular and successful pro wrestling career, Benoit murdered his wife, his young son, and then hanged himself over a two day period in 2007. Post-mortem showed his brain demonstrated severe signs of CTE, and he was positive for multiple drugs, including anabolic steroids. It is presumed he was experiencing dementia, and probably in the throes of a depressive psychosis at the time. Whether that was primarily related to the brain damage, the drug use, or both is not completely clear. Oh, he was 40 years old, BTW. Now, I suppose one could argue that the tragedy in all its details is not necessarily relevant to a story about how WWE exploits its talent. After all, no one has argued that Vince McMahon had any culpability in Benoit committing murder and suicide, although there have been decades-long allegations that he promotes and even supplies steroids to his performers (he was prosecuted in Federal court in 1994 and acquitted of all charges). Perhaps the Benoit story would be better aligned with investigations on the effects of repeated head injuries/concussions, and not so much a tale about labor relations and misclassification of independent contractors, except for. . . I vividly recall the day in 2007 when the deaths of Benoit and his family were announced on television news (the circumstances of the deaths and who was responsible had not been released at that time). That evening the live RAW arena show was not broadcast as planned. Instead the entire broadcast was dedicated to Benoit, with numerous testimonials from WWE leadership and performers and some classic Benoit matches rebroadcast. It is not an exaggeration to say that from start to finish his memory was honored and his colleagues expressed admiration, love, and authentic grief at his death. Twenty-four hours later, there was a clearer picture of what actually happened and news outlets reported that the situation appeared to be a murder-suicide. From that moment forward, Benoit was virtually erased from existence in regards to WWE. Any mention of him has been removed from WWE website, publications and products, and from all future broadcasts. Talk about treating your talent as an afterthought - how about a non-thought! What a contrast to the attitude of just 24 hours earlier. Just seems incredibly cold to me. Benoit made the McMahon family a lot of money over several years, and literally gave his body, his brain, and his life. Continuing to acknowledge his hard work, talent, and the very tragic circumstances of his death at a young age would not be inappropriate and would seem at the very least human. How mercenary. Now, the only question remaining is: who actually saw the CM Punk match where he shit his tights? Just wondering how in the world the wrestlers/ref/commentators handled that one.
  2. sd dude

    S03.E05: If You Have Ghosts

    I had the same inference and thought it surprising that it was never referenced in the script, especially when the rednecks were initially accosting him and later when confronting him at his home, it would have seemed natural and unsurprising (though not justifiable) if epithets of one sort or another were tossed around in that context. What further confused me on the issue (and I could have heard or be remembering wrong), was later after the shooting (at the hospital maybe), I thought Hays referred to Woodard as a "cracker" which I would not think would be an epithet an African American person would target toward someone else who is recognized and understood to be Native American.
  3. sd dude

    S01.E08: The Semi-Finals

    I actually am in agreement with the judges for a change. The Miles/Mackenzie duo/fusion dance is also my favorite of the entire series thus far. Good choreo, good performance, high energy, just plain fun to watch. I actually watched it three times. I simply enjoyed it. Which is very much what was missing from the entire season 27 of the adult series. It was just never fun. I never really enjoyed anything about it. Sure there were some impressive and memorable performances (the Cheryl-Juan Pablo AT comes to mind), but I wouldn't call it fun. And if nothing else, a silly show like DWTS should at least be fun. A hiatus of DWTS from my TV screen really is in order. Brief note to Skye: Dear Skye, you are an adorable, precocious, and impressive young woman. Now, enough with the speeches. Please. That's about as sensitive as I can do it.
  4. sd dude

    S01.E07: Time Machine

    I could have done without seeing HBB (aka Alana) on my screen again last night. It was a surprise reveal to be sure as the troupe even choreographed same. Problem is - she still doesn't dance - sort of the Grocery Store Joe/Bobby Bones of the Juniors set, she just stands, bends a bit, and strikes poses. Having just her and the experienced kids in the troupe side by side didn't do her any favors. I kind of wonder what the back story was behind that brief reappearance - seemed odd.
  5. I agree with those who would like the return of Dance Center, although I admit the last couple of renditions had gotten somewhat dry. However, the comedy bits that never cease to leave me in stiches are the outtakes that show Lindsay and Witney appearing as dumb as a box of rocks when it comes to any common knowledge outside of dancing. I know it sounds mean spirited but dammit it's funny as hell.
  6. sd dude

    S27.E11: Week 9: Finale

    I've been an avid viewer of DWTS since S1E1. Honestly, I think I have missed possibly one episode in 27 seasons. After what happened this past Monday, I would be fine with the show disappearing for good. I went to some significant lengths to remain unspoiled (more on that below) but when I caught up on the finale last night, I'm sure my mouth dropped open more than Alexis's when the winning couple was announced. I was extremely disappointed that JP and Cheryl did not get to dance in the finals, however I had come to terms with it and decided I would be perfectly satisfied to see either Milo or Evanna take the trophy with the other hopefully taking first runner up. I just didn't want to see Alexis win as the showmance was gagworthy. The fourth couple in the final was not of any consequence, obviously. Right. I was just as shocked at that outcome as I had been at another vote back in November a couple of years back, another outcome that seemed simply inconceivable. So the irony is the lengths I went to catch the ending unspoiled. I watched the final on my DVR late Monday night/Tuesday morning but because Monday Night Football went 5 minutes over it's scheduled end time, DWTS started 5 minutes late in Los Angeles. In other words, after sitting through the 30 minutes of content and 90 minutes of extraneous boring crap, my 2 hour recording ended 5 minutes early, that is I was watching these four couples be serenaded for some pointless reason (yeah, that's part of the 90 minutes, not the 30), when the recording abruptly ended. ARRRGH! So after avoiding SM and the web to the best of my ability all day Tuesday, I started the on demand feed as soon as I got home from work; the on demand feed that includes all the commercials and does not allow FF function! Granted, I went to another room and did something useful for about the first hour and a half, but came back to rewatch the last half hour including those final 5 minutes. When that result was announced, I was glad I had kept myself unspoiled. If I had read that result on SM for example, I honestly think I would have figured it had to be a mistake or a joke by the poster. No joke. Just a travesty. Along with the travesty of me spending nearly 4 hours of my life just to get to see that ending. Feh!
  7. sd dude

    S02.E08: Stories

    The ABC affiliate in Los Angeles broadcast the episode in that ever popular timeslot of 1:06 AM - 2:06 AM Tuesday morning (No, really. I was up then and accidentally chanced upon it in real time.) How could anyone have missed that?
  8. sd dude

    S03.E09 Schwanzkopf

    What doesn't make sense is why Jesse's ploy to hide the original Humperdoo among the clones is a good plan. If these are clones, then they are exact genetic duplicates. They don't need the original. They just have to grab the first white jumpsuit they find and that is the default Messiah. Of course, he may need to be trained in the old softshoe, but that seems like a reasonable workaround to me. And now I am trying to impose logic on the Preacher universe. LOL.
  9. sd dude

    Season 3 Discussion

    Pardon my ignorance of matters deaf and hard of hearing, but why would a person with completely normal hearing and diction for the first 40 or 50 years of her life, almost immediately develop severely impaired speech upon abruptly losing her hearing? Is the presumption that the character's vocal cords were also affected by the explosion? I can't see why that would be the case.
  10. I type corrected. I may have forgotten, but did Oliver credit Deadspin? Somehow I was left with the impression that his staff put it together.
  11. The part that was glaring for me and left me annoyed was when Bill credited "someone" with putting together the clip of all the Sinclair anchors reading the same copy, but didn't or couldn't take the effort to mention it was John Oliver. Is there some significant rivalry there? Does Maher have some resentment toward Oliver? If so, could it be because LWT, as compared to RT, is actually. . .uhm. . .funny, entertaining, and informative? Maybe I'm making a mountain out of a molehill, but Bill names other hosts and personalities all the time, so why not credit Oliver for what he admitted was very clever and effective investigative journalism? I mean, they're both on HBO, FFS!
  12. sd dude

    S03.E16: I, Ava

    So, is the implication that Amaya the character takes the time to straighten her hair when she gets into uniform? Or should I infer that the character (not the actress) is wearing various wigs and changes wigs from curly to straight when she changes to Vixen? Not much of a disguise really, so doesn't make much sense either way. I hope I'm not exercising a double standard. When Laurel Lance as Black Canary in Arrow would suit up with long blonde hair, I never assumed she was dying her hair back and forth several times an episode. And again, just changing hair color and style does not make for a great vigilante disguise either, but it is a little more effective than hair of the same color and length simply going from straight to curly, and Laurel did wear a mask as well.
  13. sd dude

    S03.E19: Orange Is the New Maze

    To paraphrase a tagline from Superman - the Motion Picture "You will believe a demon can cry." Well, there is no denying it that Maze the demon has a full range of emotions beyond her usual hedonistic passions that are fulfilled by inflicting pleasure and pain on the damned. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe this is the first time we have seen the character produce tears. We know she was experiencing emotional hurt and jealousy over Ameninda (wasn't that Lucifer's contraction in this episode?) but it was expressed purely in anger and rage, which was probably the best she could do with her limited experience and emotional range at the time. Now we see a pure expression of sadness and despair at the knowledge that she will never be the most important thing in Lucifer's life. I felt quite sorry for the character in the scene. The other inference that I take from these events, and I don't know that it has ever been made explicit before, is that Maze clearly is in love with Lucifer. Whether Lucifer created her with those feelings already in place, or he made her only to serve and she fell in love with him at some point since the dawn of mankind is unclear, but the depth of her feelings certainly seems clear to anyone paying attention, except the object of her affection himself, although it is quite possible he is simply not paying attention. In that way, all these other characters, both her intimate partners like Amenadiel and her besties like Linda and Chloe are really her consolation prizes, since she is denied the real relationship that she pines for. I don't expect that the show will ever follow up on this or explore those feelings to some sort of conclusion, but TBH, I would be much more interested in watching a developing relationship between Lucifer and Mazikeen, compared to Lucifer and Chloe, which has just become completely stagnant and boring. OTOH, Lucifer lately has started to become as boring a character as Chloe, in the fact that the character simply won't grow at all in terms of his all-encompassing self-absorption. For any apparent step forward, the next episode shows two steps back. There may be an arc to the plot, but the two main characters have none. Meanwhile, we are seeing Maze, Linda, Amenadiel, Charlotte evolving significantly since they were first introduced, which is why they are all more interesting characters than the leads. I know it's weird, but while composing this post, I had a Sopranos flashback, in that a major theme that emerged by the end of the series was "people don't change". Once a sociopathic mob boss, always a sociopathic mob boss. Once a selfish, narcissistic lord of hell, always a selfish, narcissistic lord of hell. In this case, it's not a very satisfying theme.
  14. sd dude

    S19.E16: Dare

    (Also no lawyer here). We didn't see the arraignment of course, but presumably the doctor pleaded not guilty to the charges, and therefore had a right to a fair trial. Whether she confessed to a particular act in a police interview or on the witness stand amounts to evidence in the trial, not a verdict in the trial. After all, we've seen many, many times (and not just on L&O) how engaging in a behavior, choosing to act or not act in some way, committing to a particular decision, etc. does not necessarily equate with guilty or not guilty in a court of law. It appeared to this layperson that the defense attorney was basically shooting for jury nullification on the grounds that the doctor violated the letter of the law but it was an improper law and that the doctor had proper justification for violating it. Wrong. Bottom line - I can confess in a recorded live interview on national TV in the presence of police and a prosecuting attorney that I'm the guy who buried Jimmy Hoffa, but I can't be immediately punished for it if I don't accept a plea of guilty in front of a judge, and if I insist after the fact that I'm not guilty, the constitution entitles me to a trial, regardless of what the evidence is against me.
  15. sd dude

    S03.E11: City of Angels?

    Correct. But it was in Rocky II. For the rematch with Creed, Mick has him switch focus from being a brawler to being a lighter, quicker, more agile fighter, thus the unpredictability of the hen makes for a good training tool. Whether such a strategy has ever actually been used by a boxer in real life is a separate question. Topic: Loved the episode. Lots of laughs. Maze's exposition on hell left me confused about something. She claimed that torture in hell was limited to the person's own source of guilt, which gives consistency to the previous scenes in hell that show the damned living their worst experience over and over in an endless loop, and to an earlier monologue by Lucifer where he talks of a soul who would dictate how he wished to be tortured each day. It also explains Maze's fascination with earth where she has freedom to explore every extreme, variation, and nuance of pleasure and pain at her own whim. What it doesn't explain is if the damned in hell are responsible for their own torture, then what is the purpose of a demon in the first place?
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