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  1. While "Me!" was just awful in almost every way, "You Need To Calm Down" in my opinion is actually good. Yes, I'd agree she's not even singing for most of it, it's really kind of like white girl rapping, but it actually works. And that's before we even get to the lyrics, which even aside from how great the message is, are clever. I will say that watching a bunch of YouTube reaction videos of people viewing this, I did wind up thinking though that Taylor is kind of snowing everybody with her making-up storyline with Katy Perry, and people are actually buying it. It didn't escape my notice that Taylor generically thanked all the guest stars in the video and hasn't mentioned Perry by name at all, at least in the publicity I've seen. I'm betting that story isn't over, even if the two of them keep any remaining beef off the Internet.
  2. Interesting thing I heard a week or so after the show. Gibbs was ALWAYS planned as part of the show, but playing the role of MOTHER JEFFERSON. Machado truly was supposed to be Florence. So the woman who wound up playing Mother Jefferson was a last minute addition and the performance suffered for it. And Machado seemingly got screwed over (hopefully she still got paid her full fee).
  3. I just realized how nuts some of those venues are for a comedy book reading: 1.) Sydney Opera House - seats as much as 5700 people 2.) Radio City - seats as much as 6000 people 3.) O2 Manchester - seats as much as 3500 people 4.) Chicago Theater - seats as much as 3600 people 5.) Met Philadelphia - seats as much as 3500 people
  4. James has sometimes gotten on my nerves, but I've usually thought Alice was fairly brilliant. However I do think overall their role is necessary. The stories themselves are hilarious, sure, but the meat of the concept is how they react to what they're hearing. If Jamie just went off about how shit it all was in a vacuum, it would just sound like bellyaching. He has to have someone to bounce things off or the concept doesn't work. There has to be a dialogue about how horrid it is, not a monologue.
  5. Kromm

    Veronica Mars Revival

    Amanda Seyfried? Kristen started as more successful, but arguably Amanda was a bigger success than Kristen for some of those in--between years (with Mamma Mia, Big Love and Les Mis), although Kristen took that crown back in recent years.
  6. Kromm

    After Life

    Except he cared about LOTS of things. He was just lying to himself. He cared about the dog. A lot. Saying it was just a responsibility was total bullshit, to such an extent even he kind of knew it. He cared about his Dad. Yes, his visits were posed as really short, and its not like he had to travel far so we don't know how distance would have affected his visits, but I don't care how easy it was, or how short those visits were. They were REGULAR. And with a parent with that condition... that says a lot. He cared about his photographer friend. Even while mocking him mercilessly, you could clearly see there was love there too. Even his claims that he'd stripped away all the social conventions was crap. Most of them, yes, especially where there were no consequences, but notice he was never cruel to the new girl. Not even once. He could be cruel without regard to strangers, because of the lack of consequences. He'd usually never have to deal with them again. He could be cruel to those who knew him well, again because of the perceived lack of consequences--in this case because he knew they'd excuse and forgive him. But he couldn't be cruel to someone new to him who he'd have to continue knowing. Someone where, even not by choice, he had to build a new relationship with--and where it was clear she was a really nice person and didn't deserve cruelty. It showed the lie of his claim that he really didn't care. The lady in the cemetery was similar. He CARED what she thought of him. In a way that was very well shaded and sophisticated writing. Who he treats in what way is a very subtle furthering of the story in how it showed his real character under the outrageous Dickery. So in the end, when we see him change it's not a clichéd Ebenezer Scrooge after his night of Ghosts piece of malarkey from the blue. Because we've seen him show better character traits all along in certain circumstances.
  7. Kromm

    After Life

    I was so pleasantly surprised by this. Every last thing about this was right. I agree it was such a complete story it didn't really need a Series 2. I'm reasonably convinced there's no way a Series 2 could work as well, and it risks damaging what we've gotten already. That said, I can see at least a few paths it can take where what results can be fairly good, even if not quite this perfect. One suggestion I'd have for Ricky is to have his character become a bit more of an observer and explore the backstories of the other characters more. In some shows that kind of change of focus might hurt, but here I think it's the best way forward, because his own story wrapped up so well. Yes, we can go into his dating, I suppose, but I think the whole point of this was to leave him in a place where he's capable of caring about those around him. So using him as a lever to dig into the problems of those around him would actually be a way to show the results of that change in him in action. Clearly the brother in law's marriage is potentially a big story, but there are other less obvious ones too.
  8. Actually, I've come to think that Machado HAD to be a total foiler. Here's why. Florence's race probably is no issue at all in most Jefferson's episodes. But it seems very important to the specific episode they chose. Louise's entire plot is based on the discomfort of having someone she sees so much of herself in working as her domestic servant (her friend Diane--who I didn't even recognize as Jackée Harry!). While that would still be at least somewhat true simply because Louise had a past which included work that wasn't entirely dissimilar, since this was set in the mid-70s, this was definitely just as much or more about the race of that person as well. Louise was black. Diane was black. And so was this prospective hire, Florence. That's why even though even though Louise was most resistant to treating Diane like her servant, she was still, even later, resistant to Florence, until... yet another black woman, Helen Willis, talked her through that discomfort. And Florence's closing line of the show was entirely based on race--the "overcome" phrasing is very specific to the Civil Rights movement (even though two white singers, Pete Seeger and Joan Baez popularized it, it was basically the main anthem of the movements--up to and including being sung by the crowd at MLK's funeral). The line just doesn't work the same way with a Hispanic, as common as it was and still is for them to be maids, and for in their own community for their to be similar feelings about a social divide between the ones who "made it" and the ones who haven't.
  9. Can you be more specific? Did it seem too dated to you? Badly acted? Politically offensive to your values?
  10. Sally Struthers can stuff it. She revealed herself as an intolerable blowhard years ago and has done nothing since to change my opinion of her.
  11. Jeffersons: Jennifer Hudson killed the theme song. She had the unique intonations of it down perfectly. Wanda Sykes: was a lot better than I expected. I saw her more as perfect for Florence. Of course they got an even better Florence. Jamie Foxx: overplayed the role, but settled into it further in. The guy who played Bentley wasn't English enough. Why couldn't they find an actual Englishman? Hollywood is lousy with them. It's a small role, but I wasn't that fond of their Lionel. Kerry Washington was great. Helen was always very saucy and she played that in proper proportion. And I appreciate Will Ferrell's restraint here. I often hate his comedy, but he's a good straightman and this was closer to that. It's a slightly silly role but he reigned it in rather than pushing it. The right decision. And I found this episode almost as relevant as the All in the Family one. Right down to Florence's last line of the night.
  12. Indeed. While there are less people like Archie in Queens, NY now, that's been more than made up by the increasing numbers of them in other parts of the country. Many of the specific arguments have changed, and a lot of the terminology used, but the underlying attitudes are still there. And geez. The Nixon talk echoed SO loudly now. It boomed with relevance. And Gloria's rant about "why not a woman President" ? Practically straight out of 2019.
  13. ALL IN THE FAMILY: Oh poor Woody. He SO was the weak point of this, and I bet by now he knows it. Marisa was indeed the MVP. As over the top and variable as Woody's accent sounded, Marisa's was not only dead on, but solid and consistent. And she's the piece of casting I thought was totally nuts beforehand. I guess I forgot how good an actress she really is (and a pretty good comedienne as well).
  14. Yeah. Either that was a fake casting spoiler always intended to be a foiler, or Miss Machado was legit cast at one point and got pushed to the side for the sake of a surprise cameo.