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S01.E24: The Lottery

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The finale!

 

The Lottery: State lotteries claim to be good for education and the general wellbeing of citizens.
But are they? (Spoiler alert: No.)

Salmon Canon: There is a cannon that shoots salmon over dams.
It’s awesome. Check it out.

 

Placeholder Joke:

 

Why did the turkey cross the road?

 

Because he wasn't a chicken.

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Fremde Frau . . .  according to Time Warner, it will be a 45 minute-long episode.

        Bring in the champagne and thank HBO they're giving Ollie-Scone more airtime! I'm gonna miss him sooooooo much! 

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Actually, it was a half-hour, meaning that HBO had 15 minutes of commercial time to burn. Disappointing, really.

 

At least we'll be getting a new season in February. May it be as wacky and mind-opening as the first.

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The salmon Canon was one of the funniest bits Johnny has done so far. All of the celebrity cameos with their WTF faces getting slapped with the salmon just tickled me pink. How in the hell did he get Tom Hanks and R2-D2 to do this? Well I'm going to miss John while he's gone, at least he ended the season on a real high note, going from the ridiculousness of the salmon cannon to shining a light onto the scam that is the educational state lotteries to The closing credits dance party with all the characters from earlier eps. Loved seeing the Scottish unicorn and space sex geckos again but the pole dancing chicken still freaks me out.

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I really do love the streak of silliness that runs through LWT. Hopefully once The Colbert Report - which also revels in being silly - has finished, LWT will keep giving me those sublime moments of silliness I love so much. The Salmon Cannon bit was wonderfully silly - especially because it just kept on going, and going, and going! Bravo to the whole LWT for a brilliant first season.

 

ETA: A bilingual (English and German) friend once told me that the German language has no word for 'silly'. Anyone know if that's true?

Edited by purist

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Loved the salmon cannon. How did they get all of those people to participate?

 

(@purist, I've only studied German for two years, so I'm no expert, but I've seen both albern and dumm used in the context of "silly.")

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I loved Ollie's salmon cannon too. I mean, what's not to love? It's amazing the people they got to participate. 

 

I can't imagine that the real cannon wouldn't have some kind of detrimental effect on the fish. It seems like it would be a pretty traumatic experience. I assume they've done studies, but I wonder. Also, I thought dams had something like water steps that salmon would swim up, jumping from step to step.

 

All the stuff about the leader of Turkey was news to me. What an asshole.

 

I understand what John was saying about the lottery money just going in the big pool, but I still don't get why those funds aren't earmarked for education and left there. It doesn't really make sense to me.

 

I'm going to miss this show. I hope next year they do more than 24 episodes.

Edited by peeayebee
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I enjoyed the ending montage the most. John looked genuinely happy and giddy. It was sweet.

 

I'm going to miss this show. I hope next year they do more than 24 episodes.

 

35!

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I understand what John was saying about the lottery money just going in the big pool, but I still don't get why those funds aren't earmarked for education and left there. It doesn't really make sense to me.

 

I took it to mean that if the states in question had say $5 billion in their budget for education and $5 in lottery money earmarked for education came in, the schools didn't end up with $10 billion - they paid for the schools with the lottery money and took the original $5 bil they got from taxes and put it somewhere else, like Under assistant secretaries for game development or something.  He (or his source, actually) wasn't saying the schools weren't getting lottery money, it was that the lottery money didn't increase education's funding in those states, as the ad implies.

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To say that they hit a home run with their first season is an understatement. It's rather like a collage of scenes from The Natural, but with Roy Hobbs intentionally targeting clocks, light fixtures, reporters, evil shadow men... Anything in their way was left in shambles.

 

Enjoy your break, LWT. You deserve it.

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I guess February isn't too long to wait, if that's when they come back. A lot of network shows go on hiatus through the holiday months as well.

 

I can't believe how many celebs were game to participate in the salmon shooting. Even The Young and the Restless!

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Also, I thought dams had something like water steps that salmon would swim up, jumping from step to step.

An NPR webpage includes water steps in a list where "... all of those methods are expensive and none of them are efficient" and seeing the condition of California waterways makes me wonder if drought might also be a problem, if there isn't enough water for water steps to work. (Although water steps are really cool to watch - like aquariums, they have underwater observation walls - and if you ever get to see a salmon hatchery it's kind of adorable that the "leap upstream" instinct is so strong that even 2" long fish try their best to jump into the water coming from a pipe above the tank)

 

Also:

Bryan says that despite their journey — which takes them out of the water for the duration of their flight — the fish don't seem worse for the wear.

"From the very beginning of the test that was a concern," Bryan says. "It may be just ten seconds to go as much as 250 feet ... [but] there seems to be no effect. The fish enter the water and swim away."

 

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John takes on such great topics, and the lottery scam was no exception.  The whole bit with funding eduction is such bs because Totale is right, it merely takes the state money that was allocated to education and substitutes it with lottery money, moving the state money to other items that usually don't really help the people that are funding the lottery.  Certainly we have a lottery in PA and yet we still have an inadequately funded education system. 

 

It is a 'stupid tax' or a 'poor tax'.  That said, I've paid $1 now and again, or coughed up $5 for the office lottery pool, since I don't recall the last time I heard of anyone who got struck by lightning while being eaten by a shark, but I have heard of lottery winners.

 

The salmon cannon was full of win.

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I think my favorite reaction was Stephen's. He immediately looked so over it, which is precisely what anyone should feel if slapped in the face by a flying salmon. R2-D2 was a pretty close second, though.

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I too enjoyed the salmon cannon. But I wish he had said something about the midterm elections, which were kinda important you know.

 

It'll be a long two months before a new season of LWT starts. :(

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I have to admit, I have new respect for those soap actors for maintaining straight faces for soooooo long after she got hit by a flying salmon.

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I have to admit, I have new respect for those soap actors for maintaining straight faces for soooooo long after she got hit by a flying salmon.

Me too, though I think soap operas are second only to live theater in terms of the doctrine of "if something goes wrong, just go with it" because they don't have much time or money for re-takes.

Edited by Latverian Diplomat

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The salmon Canon was one of the funniest bits Johnny has done so far. All of the celebrity cameos with their WTF faces getting slapped with the salmon just tickled me pink. How in the hell did he get Tom Hanks and R2-D2 to do this? 

Technically, J. J. Abrams was the bigger get in the Star Wars scene, but only technically. :-)

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The Salmon Cannon was  a great way to cap off such a great first season.  Just a parade of super famous people, getting fish-slapped for the sheer fun of it.  

 

Also, all hail the soap actors for what was easily the most committed reaction to the bit.  What a great first season.  May it be one of many.  

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That salmon cannon bit went on for so long I was looking for signs that the fish were CGI added to some existing scene found in an archive. I couldn't believe they got so many cameos.

 

Though, as a soap opera fan, I wish they could have gotten Eileen Davidson to be hit with a fish. Maybe two or three Eileen Davidsons.

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Interestingly, the lottery piece has gotten 1,441,922 views compared to the salmon cannon's 819,502 views on YouTube. I would have thought the salmon cannon would have been way more viral. It was almost as though the LWT staff was trying to design the Most! Viral! Video! Ever!!

 

The most popular clip of the show's first season: the FIFA piece, with 8,446,193 views. I'm guessing the subject matter made it popular around the world and not just in the U.S.

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It's a good thing that HBO is not geoblocking the content.

 

They are definitely clever in their strategies for internet domination; their Twitter account is actively engaging fans, as well. LWT is much more of an internet-savvy show like Fallon's and Colbert's; TDS gets with it from time to time but is pretty old school in that regard. I think LWT has given Fallon a run for his money in the viral-video-making department. Then Colbert will truly enter the fray next year (away from Viacom's YouTube hatred and geoblocking), and all bets will be off. It's interesting that LWT tends to go viral on very specific topics like FIFA or net neutrality, whereas TDS tends to go viral when Jon is truly pissed and/or when they hit a very raw social nerve on a broader, systemic issue like feminism, racism, war, immigration, prejudice against Muslims, etc. Of course, they all get a lot of great mileage out of bits of fun like #mcconnelling, bears, and flying salmon.

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Technically, J. J. Abrams was the bigger get in the Star Wars scene, but only technically. :-)

 

Heh.  Not to this fan of the original trilogy.

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