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  1. blackwing

    Tennis Thread

    Some big names crashing out in the first round. Venus, Angelique, Madison Keys, FAA. Venus said she won't play for the rest of the year. She says she will be back next year but this has naturally sparked rumours of retirement. She's definitely been one of the game's great champions. I know one motivation of her staying on the tour was to make it to another Olympics. But even if the Olympics had been held this year, there was zero chance she would have been chosen for singles and no guarantee she and Serena would have been chosen for doubles. I do hope she will come back next season and I do hope she and Serena would play doubles together at least one more time in a Slam. For some reason I feel like Venus would always be up for playing doubles but I think Serena is too focused on 24 and doesn't want to play doubles because of the distraction and the additional physical toll.
  2. If they are going to spend more money to hire an actress to play her sister... can they also hire a stylist to fix that art experiment on her head? I don't understand why they can't bring back Maya. I really liked Maya and I liked that the idea of her was challenging the Forresters. Why did they get rid of her? They should also bring back her parents. The non-acceptance of her by her father was a good storyline. Remember when soap operas used to at least do some storylines that were matters of general human interest/concern? And not just constantly concerned with revolving love triangles/quadrangles. Where are Maya and Rick currently supposed to be anyways? Are they in Paris? Are they still together? Where is Nicole supposed to be? Do the Avant parents still get invited to Forrester functions (assuming Maya and Rick are still together) even if Maya is abroad? And you're right... all of the black characters seem to have come and gone very quickly. But that's always Bradley for you. He gets all hot to trot about a certain character, they get very overexposed and then disappear. Dayzee? I thought she was great. Marcus? I hated him. Nicole? Liked her. Zzzzzzzzende? Enough said. Emma? Why bother to kill her, she was good. Xander? Who? Justin has always been marginalized when he and Donna really should be more involved in storylines. The only constant is that for some unknown reason, we are STILL stuck with Carter. I nominate him for Top 5 Useless Characters Ever.
  3. Ugh. I fear she's going to be around until the producers run out of cat-themed songs for her. This week is Disney week.... hmm, is it any surprise which movie her song will come from? We are sure to have "Cat Scratch Fever", "The Lion Sleeps Tonight". "Don'cha" by the Pussycat Dolls for the cha cha. And I'm sure they will contrive to keep her around until Broadway night so she can do the waltz to "Memory". I can already picture Bruno now. "So beeeeyoootifulll. So elegant!" Sigh.
  4. Interesting, I never thought of his condition as a disability, in fact I had always thought of it as almost like a cool superpower. I would love to have perfect recall. I'm at about the same place! I just finished Part I, page 337. And while nobody has yet been raped up to page 300, there's been some violence and mistreatment. Follett has always been very great at creating loathsome characters and giving them their just desserts, so I am hoping there is misfortune in store for
  5. Yes, I always thought that Thomas and Steffy had a good relationship with Brooke despite all of the pingponging back and forth of Ridge. She was a good mom to them after the multiple Taylor deaths. I guess with Taylor alive, somewhere along the line, they hate her now. It's sad. It is weird they keep mentioning Taylor if there are no plans to bring her back. I hadn't realised that there was any backstory behind Hunter Tylo's absence or limited usage. I would agree that the natural thing to do here would be for either Ridge or Thomas to call up Taylor and ask her to come to town and support her daughter, even if Steffy thinks she doesn't need help. Interesting suggestions for a Taylor recast, but I don't see any reason why they need to find someone who looks like Hunter Tylo. I mean, they recast Ronnnn Moss and Ginsu cheekbones and carefully coiffed mullet with a frumpy, overweight, greaseball whose Irish/German/whatever accent kept coming and going in the beginning.
  6. I agree it's a little cold, but I guess it's a soap opera and there would be no drama if Hope just let Phoebe/Beth live with Steffy. I'm still pissed that Flo wasn't charged with any crime. It's even worse that she's Hope's cousin. If I were Hope I would never want to speak to her ever again. And when will Thomas ever get charged with the death of Emma? I would hope that this will one day come back into play... but this is Bradley, so I have little faith.
  7. I don't understand why this is even a question... Steffy is clearly addicted to pills and is putting her child in danger. Liam is the child's father. Why doesn't he just go to the courts and get temporary full custody? Or have her declared unfit? Why has the show featured three days of arguing about this? I dislike Liam a lot, but he is the child's father and he has every right to be concerned about her safety and wellbeing. The cynic in me says the only purpose of this is to hand Jackie Wood another Emmy. I have no doubt these shows will be her Emmy submission. I think she is a terrible actress, and I found the screeching and face scrunching to be laughable. Well, there's Steffi Graf. And even though I don't like her, in her defence, I think she has been called Steffy since birth, and they called her Steffy to distinguish her from Stephanie. It would have been confusing when they were on the show at the same time. And I guess it's hard to all of a sudden decide that you're going to be Stephanie instead of Steffy. I know plenty of grown adults who still call themselves Jenny, Missy, Bobby, Jimmy, Tommy, etc.
  8. I found it very enjoyable, although I think the panel is useless. There's too many of them and of course all of them are going to have different opinions. The contestant isn't going to get any help from them this way. I can't stand Adrienne Bailon. I hated her as the Flamingo on "The Masked Singer" because I thought she was very desperate and trying too hard. I feel the same way about her here... she is trying too hard. I mean, that outfit with her "look at me" fake breasts busting out at the seams. The way she sang to show everyone that "YESH I AM SINGER". I do like Nick Lachey and Kelly Osbourne. Not sure why Cheryl Hines is on this show and Arsenio Hall, hey man, haven't seen you in like two decades! Are the judges going to rotate throughout the season? I thought I saw Joel McHale in the previews. I don't understand why this show and Masked Singer are bothering to pretend that there is a studio audience. I'm not exactly sure how this worked, whether this is entirely old footage or whether they had some crew members singing along in just a small section of the audience and taped them. Because at least some of the footage is old and from Masked Singer. At around the 30 minute mark, there's a little blonde guy that gapes his mouth open with an OMG expression. We've seen him at least twice, I believe this exact shot was used twice, not exactly sure when, but I remember seeing it twice and commenting on it. There's also an Asian woman with a high ponytail who does a similar OMG expression (one was during Patti LaBelle's performance in Season 2, and another in Season 3) that I recognised before as appearing in the audience multiple times... let's see if she shows up on this show haha. Edit: On rewatch, YES, High Ponytailed Asian Woman was indeed on the show, doing her OMG look at around 39 minutes. Too funny. I'm sure Masked Singer has plenty of audience shots at this point, they really could have found new ones. I was curious if the panel was going to remain the same, and unfortunately, next week, the only carryovers are Adrienne Bailon (Houghton) and Cheryl Hines. Jordan Sparks is the headliner next week and will sing the duet. Too bad, I really liked Nick Lachey. He's still great and I liked how excited he was for the contestant when the Stylist was revealed as a good singer. Why isn't he making music anymore? Even if 98 Degrees is kaput, he could still do his own thing.
  9. Actually, Uranus does have rings. Not as many as Saturn of course, but it does have them. I think the jokes are hysterical, they are never not funny to me. To me it's like farting. Farting is never not funny, no matter how old I get. I thought Diving Range was funny the first time, but it got really old, really fast. The constant sputtering and yelling of Greg Louganis and Steve Guttenberg... not funny. I would have preferred to have seen Clowning Around all season. How come they couldn't use this hole throughout the season? 95% of the reason why I watch this show is to see people falling in the water. Pies in the face are equivalent to falling in the water. The Distractor hole was boring, even if I really liked that actor during his Police Academy days. Portapotty and Polecano are my favourite holes so I was happy to see one of them getting used. The shocking hole, I guess it doesn't have the same impact to me as falling in the water because the shock can't be seen.
  10. blackwing

    Tennis Thread

    Yes, I saw that Damir Dzumhur, who used to be a top 40 player I thought, is out after his coach tested positive. The coach blasted the tournament organisers and said that Dzumhur had worked so hard to prepare. Too bad. They shared a hotel room to save money, and because of that, Dzumhur is out. They knew the risk. I feel bad for these younger players who are struggling on the tour and have to pay their own travel expenses, but that's how it is unfortunately. For something like this, they should have gotten two hotel rooms. Or at least the coach could have shared a room with another coach who is a friend of his, because now that decision has forced his player out of the tournament. The French Open is my favourite Slam, and not just because it's the one at which Djokovic (and Federer) perform most poorly. There's something about that red clay that I find so appealing. The sounds, the wonky bounces, the way the balls leave marks. Plus I think it's just such a novelty since clay courts are much less common around here.
  11. I was extremely disappointed in the Tomb of Nefer-tee-tee, considering the hype they built up all season about it. I was expecting something amazing, like an extreme mini golf hole with moving parts and everything. Like an elevator and roller coaster track. At least something where the ball went into the pyramid. Instead, the pyramids were nothing more than obstacles, they might as well have just put a piece of wood on the floor to redirect the balls. And it was complete crap that Tanner (the "White Buffalo"... how is that nickname considered ok in today's age, and what does it even mean?) won. One, he shouldn't have advanced in his earlier show. But he had famous friends like Josh Duhamel and Zac Efron, so had to keep him somehow and magically have the real winner withdraw. Two, he shouldn't have won his round in this finale. His ball didn't even make it past the portapotties. But they decide that he gets to place his ball in the drop zone? Why? They said that the door would hit the ball and the ball would go in the water. Did the doors really go all the way down to the ground? Most portapotties aren't like that. I feel like he should have had to putt from there for his second stroke right away, and then take a run and fall in. So he should have been on his third stroke when the others were on their second. I didn't appreciate the manipulation. I get that he had a great putt to win, but he should never have been there.
  12. Agreed, it's ridiculous. The crying to her partner about what a tough year it's been, the crying while talking to the judges (while saying she doesn't like to cry). It's all too much. It's really obvious this whole show is about her "getting to tell my side of the story" and to get people on her side. I'm not buying her sob act and I hope she goes home next week.
  13. blackwing

    Tennis Thread

    He actually had two... he got a warning for breaking his racket and then the next day he was having an argument with the chair and got an obscenity warning. Look at this face. So endearing, isn't he? Halep won the ladies against Pliskova, after Pliskova retired in the second set with a leg injury. I was hoping for Garbine to win. I have long disliked robot automoton Pliskova. And there's something about Halep that I just don't like. After the match concluded, Halep was being interviewed and was talking about the injury and said something addressed to her like "I am sorry you had to retire and I hope you get well in time for the French Open, where we will probably meet in the finals". I'm sure it was said in the spirit of encouragement and competition, but it just comes across odd to me, like it is arrogant or something.
  14. blackwing

    Tennis Thread

    Yep. I saw he was up 3-0 and just assumed that he was going to crumble... and then he did. I get that all players have their detractors, but it seems like Djokovic has way more detractors than supporters at this point. My cousin has hated him with 1000 burning nuns intensity for years and I never quite understood why. I have never been a big fan, although I tire of him winning everything because I like variety. But I never quite disliked him until this year... COVID, US Open incident, Italian Open outburst, etc. There are few players that I always wish first round upsets on but he's at the top of my wishlist (Pliskova and Halep too). The media especially is crucifying him, saying he has an image problem. When was the last time a #1 player seemed so almost universally disliked? Was it Lendl? I don't recall Lendl having that many fans. Even after he moved to the U.S. and started playing under the American flag, I seem to remember he was frequently portrayed as the cold Eastern European against the All-American John McEnroe.
  15. Yes, I think it was really obvious that Clive hadn't written any of his books for years now. The styles were completely different. Dirk Cussler is a terrible writer. The initial co-authored books were abysmal. The latest Dirk Pitt book wasn't that bad, but still not good like when Clive wrote them. We haven't seen a new Dirk Pitt book in several years now and there doesn't appear to be any on the schedule as of yet. Each of Cussler's non-Pitt series has always had a co-author, and I've always thought the co-author pretty much wrote the book. But you're correct, at least they were always transparent about it. The one that really irritates me is James Patterson, the self-proclaimed "world's most prolific author". Well, that's because he seemingly just slaps his name on books written by other people. I'm convinced that struggling writers approach his Machine, agree to give up, say, 80% of the profits. He reads through the plot summary and agrees and that's his contribution. They put his name on the book, say that "James Patterson" has written yet another book, barely mention the co-author, and he gets another best-seller to his credit. Co-author doesn't care because their measly take is still more than what they would have gotten if they hadn't approached him, which is zero. His name opens doors. I just wish they would be more honest about him taking credit for the book. They could still market the book as written by Jane Smith, from the James Patterson Publishing House. I've been wondering a long time about John Jakes, author of "North and South". He hasn't released a book in years, and I'm assuming he has retired due to his advanced years. But I never found any information about him saying he was actually retiring. I would assume he is still alive, but I am hoping that he has been secretly writing when he can and will release another book at some point and surprise everyone.
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