Happy Cyber Monday, b-rollers! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Just a few odds and ends for you on this unseasonably warm day (seriously, climatologists, what the hell?).
- I saw The Muppets over the Thanksgiving break and this will shock you but I have some thoughts. Look for a Muppet post later in the week. I will warn you that it probably won’t be short; I adore the Muppets and, as faithful readers know, pithy isn’t my strong suit.
- The season finale of The Sing-Off is tonight. I bring this up because, of all the singing competition shows on TV right now – and there are what, 72? 73? – I do believe The Sing-Off is the best. The judges really know stuff (take notes, Nicole Scherzinger!) and speak eloquently and knowledgeably (please retire, Randy Jackson!), and the vocal groups actually – how do I put this politely? – know how to sing music. They arrange. They harmonize. They sing these amazing arrangements with impeccable harmonies live in front of people. Have you ever noticed how a group performance on American Idol or The X Factor is either lip-synched or awful? This is the exact opposite of that. So of course this show gets a fraction of the ratings of those other juggernauts. I can’t hide my bitterness. Anyway, please watch.
- I know that thanks to the sheer insanity of consumerism and marketing, the holiday season unofficially began in mid-October, and commenced in earnest at 12:01am on Friday; but that being said, it’s not even December yet and if I hear “The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” in a commercial one more time I will murder someone with a candy cane. Anyone else feel like retailers are going slightly overboard with the Christmas advertising this year? (I’m especially looking at Walmart, whose entire holiday ad campaign I have already memorized. Unwillingly.)
- And in a related story, is there a commercial more out-of-touch with our economic times than the “give your loved one a Lexus for Christmas” ad? Most infuriating ad on television, right? Except maybe for the “JLo drives a Fiat through the Bronx” commercial, which is more of a “Oh, come on, like she drives herself anywhere, especially in a Fiat” type of reaction. (The follow-up ad, in which she drives a Gucci-designed Fiat and emerges in an evening gown, is significantly more believable.)
- And finally, I finished the book Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close over the holiday break (and by “finished,” I mean “sobbed throughout the ending of.”) I bring this up because they made a movie of the book starring Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock, which I knew about when I started reading and so I pictured Tom Hanks as the father throughout, and, well…this will probably end poorly. Check out the trailer below (and for God’s sake, read the book – it’s excellent).