Category Archives: TV

Should Ed Sheeran Have Had a Cameo on Game of Thrones?

Pro – he’s probably a fan who had a good time doing it.

Con – This show is bigger than the actors.  It has never had to rest on large personalities or gimmicks, so this seemed cheesy.

Discuss.

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Game of Thrones Wrap-Up – Season 7, Episode 1 – Dragonstone

It’s a Game of Spoilers, 3.5 readers.  Look away, I say.

Basically, Cersei and Jaime are screwed, and more so than the usual screwing they do to each other.

To the South, the Dornish Amazons are pissed.  To the North, Jon Snow is King.  The Whitewalkers are headed for the Wall.

Oh, and the Khaleesi has landed.  Repeat, the Khaleesi has landed.

Arya has taken out all the Freys with her ninja skills.  Oh and all the kids have officially grown up.  Arya, Bran and Sansa are all super tall and look like they ate their Wheaties over the past year.  Sigh, this decade really has moved fast, hasn’t it?

Yes, things suck big time for Cersei.  And with her children and family gone, Jaime asks the inevitable question of what are they even fighting for?

Her only potential ally at this point seems to be Euron Greyjoy, who promises a fleet and a special mysterious gift if he can get all up in Cersei’s lady business.

Don’t do it, Euron.  You know she’s packing a steel bear trap in that thing.

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TV Review – House of Cards – Season 5

As they say in Gaffney, this review is for people who have been watching the show from the beginning and are all caught up.  Otherwise, the SPOILERS will ruin it for you.

BQB here with a review of “House of Cards-Season 5.”

I thought this show had jumped the shark a couple seasons back where Frank and the fictional Russian President had a personal showdown in the desert but I was wrong.  The shark not only jumped this season, it did backflips.

Here are my observations:

#1 – Surprise Murders/Attacks

The show got a lot of bang for its buck when Frank tossed Zoe in front of that moving subway car with literally no warning.  It made for great, disturbing viewing and heightened the stakes, letting you know the show could turn on the drop of a time.

Sadly, now they always seem to be trying to recreate that moment.  Frank pushes Kathy down a flight of stairs at random in the midst of a conversation with her.  Claire kills Yates with her vagina.  Speaking of…

#2 – Claire Did Not Kill a Man with Her Vagina

I thought maybe she had as Yates died mid coitus.  Maybe she had some sort of top secret CIA device inside her cooter but nope, it was poison (in his drink, not in the vagina.)  Still, another surprise murder.  I mean, not really because Yates had threatened the Underwoods and that’s never a good move for your health but I think the sex part was to trick you into thinking Claire was going to let him off the hook but nope, she just wanted one more turn on that penis before Yates bit the big one.

#3 – Elysium Fields

I had mixed thoughts on that.  First, it was funny.  Second, I think we all assume the rich and powerful get together to divide up and rule the country/world but still, to see it unfold brought the show to a different place.  It was creative and fun though.

#4 – Claire Becomes Vice-President/President

I never really bought that.  It could happen but usually if the First Lady is an asset, they just keep her and put her out there more and then try to add a VP who is also an asset.  In other words, if someone is on your team and scoring points for you, then you’ve got them, so you just add another person to score points.

#5 – Frank Frames Himself

That was way out of left field and total bullshit.  The whole premise of the show is that Frank does evil shit and then does more evil shit to get himself off the hook, that if you are willing to do the most evil shit then you will always win in politics.  He loves power and his own ego so that he’d somehow be willing to hand his wife the presidency and take a powder while she rules seems highly unlikely.

#6 – Claire Acknowledges the Audience

Frank has always had his little asides, breaking the fourth wall to let us in on what he’s up to.  Now Claire is doing it, so to me, that seems like the show is moving towards a final showdown between Frank and Claire.  I kind of yearn for the early days when Frank was the boss and Claire his evil consigliere.  That dynamic just seemed to make more sense.

#7 “I’m Fucking You Because I Hate You”

That lady whose husband died so Frank could have his liver knew Doug did it all along and had sex with him because she hated him?  Please.  I’ve had women completely dump me and abandon all contact because I left the toilet seat up or forgot to wash a dish so I can’t imagine the vengeance a woman would have if a liver was involved.

8 – Real TV Reporters

Does it ever bother you when real TV reporters make cameos in which they “report” on Frank?  If they’re able to act that well, makes you wonder how much of the real news involves acting.

9 – It’s getting boring.

I try not to get too deep into the weeds on some of the more complex conspiracy theories.  At this point if they say it happened then it happened.  I can’t keep track of it all.

10 – It should wrap up soon.

I feel like they’ve gone as far as they can go.  It should probably end with Claire besting Frank or maybe they both take each other out in one last Mr and Mrs Smith style battle royale to the finish.

Your thoughts, 3.5 readers?

 

 

 

 

 

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Hodor’s KFC Commercial – Chicken with Rice

Hey 3.5 readers.

Hodor was in a KFC commercial.  Just as “hold the door” became “Hodor,” so too does “chicken with fries” become “chicken with rice.”

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TOP TEN WORST TV SHOW ENDINGS/SERIES FINALES EVER #8 – How I Met Your Mother (2004-2014)

Hey 3.5 readers.  Your old pal BQB here.

I’ve been working on this list a long time now and I never seem to run out of TV shows that ended badly.

Today, I want to talk about a great show that sadly screwed the pooch in the end.  Yep, I’m talking about the long running series “How I Met Your Mother.”

Oh and FYI – SPOILERS!  So, if you haven’t watched it yet, don’t read below.

Ironically, I never watched this show while it was on the air.  I assumed it was one of many vapid CBS comedies about young, beautiful people pretending to have problems but they don’t really have them.  “Waah, boo hoo I’m so pretty and so sad.”

But as it turns out, it’s not that bad at all.  Funny, the first episode I saw was the last one.  After hearing about this show about a man telling his kids the story of how he met their mother for years, I figured it might be interesting to check out the final show where he meets “the mother.”

At the time, I thought it was nice but then over time, I went back and streamed the show from the beginning on Netflix and…yeah…that ending sucked the big one.

Unlike many sitcoms where you can come in at any time and not be lost, this series really is cumulative and better watched from the beginning.

The best short description I can give it is that it is “Friends” for the tail end of Generation X (or the beginning of the Millenials, depending on how you’re keeping score.  I know that can be confusing as “Friends” was also a big show for Generation X (but the older Gen Xers.)

Ted (Josh Radnor), Robin (Cobie Smulders), Marshall (Jason Segel), Lily (Alyson Hannigan) and Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) five youngsters just trying to make it in Manhattan.

As they go forth into the world, the show explores a variety of issues that often affect people as they move from their early twenties into their thirties or in other words, as they escape adolescence and struggle to make the best of adulthood.

Each character suffers career setbacks – i.e. their chosen professions don’t work out anywhere near the way they thought.

The characters suffer losses – i.e. parents grow old and die or decide they don’t like each other anymore and get divorced.

They experience regret and suffer sadness over thinking “What if this” and “If only I had done that” and they learn how to cope with the fact that there’s no time travel machine for them to use to go back in time and prevent themselves from making mistakes.

They all suffer romantic heartaches and Ted suffers the most.

The show is narrated from the perspective of an older Ted (voiced by Bob Saget).  Ted, an older man, calls his young children into his home office, sits them down in front of his desk and begins to tell them the story of “How I Met Your Mother.”  The show runners showed a great deal of foresight as to the show’s longevity as they recorded a number of interactions with the kids that could be used to interact with Older Ted (who we don’t see  until the very end sitting at the desk, it’s just assumed he’s there talking to the kids).

Over the course of ten seasons (this is reflected as the kids often joke about their father’s horribly long winded story telling style), we see Ted move from a young, recent college graduate to a mature adult man.

Ted is madly in love with Robin, who he sees as his end all, be all, the perfect woman, the woman that can bring all sorts of eternal happiness to his soul.

We’ve all met someone like that and we all know it feels pretty shitty when that love goes unrequited.  Even worse, an experience like that can make us doubt future relationships.  After all, if you met someone who gave you butterflies, won’t it feel like settling if you end up with someone who doesn’t?  But then again, how likely is it to get that butterfly feeling in your life more than once?  Should you really wait for it to come again?

Life is complicated as the show tells us.  Though it is filled with great humor, we learn that life’s greatest problems aren’t all black and white.  Sure, you could hate Robin for denying Ted…or you could understand that Robin wants something very different than what Ted wants.

Ted dreams of a stable home life filled with kids and a loving wife who adores him and will work on house projects with him and shop for curtains and so on.  Robin dreams of becoming a big time TV reporter, traveling the world, going on awesome adventures and making a lot of money.

Thus, as much as these two do love each other, Robin at least realizes she probably would not have the type of personality that Ted yearns for in the long run.

The show moves on.  Ted meets a series of woman.  Each time, we wonder if this woman will be “the mother.”  Ted is abused by some of these women and at other times, Ted screws the pooch royally with these women.  It’s reflective of the average love life – sometimes people get screwed over and sometimes they do the screwing over.

By the time the last episode rolls around, Ted is forlorn as hell, having to go through an indignity no man should suffer through – being expected to go to the wedding of the woman he loves (Robin) to his one of his best friends (Barney.)

That’s another lesson of the show.  Sometimes love will come in an inconvenient manner.  Rarely does it ever show up when you want it to by appointment under the best of circumstances.   Like Robin, Barney also yearns for that flashy, jet setting lifestyle and so he and Robin are perfect for each other…though it causes all sorts of turmoil given that they both are friends with Ted.

But then things look up for Ted.  Ted’s about to kiss New York goodbye, ready to move on to Chicago, a new city that isn’t filled with so many sad memories for him, when he meets…”the mother!”

Robin and Barney are happy.  Ted and “The Mother” are happy…it looks like the show will end happily for all and then…SPOILER…the mother dies.  Yup.  They kill off the mother right after we meet her…after the show’s biggest fans were waiting ten years to meet her.

At some point, we see Robin and Barney staying in a hotel in some exotic location Robin is reporting (she finally got her dream job) from.  Barney has become a successful blogger, sharing the many secrets of how to score with chicks he learned from his days as a super pervert.

You’d think they’d be happy – after all, Robin is traveling all over the world on her network’s time and Barney is tagging along with a new career that he can do from anywhere as long as he brings his laptop but, we’re told they are miserable with this lifestyle, but to me, that just seems so out of character.  All those two wanted was a) love b) adventure and c) to not have to sacrifice one for the other.  They’re fellow adventurers who love one another and can travel the world together…not sure how that’s wrong for them.

Yes, Barney hooked up with Robin and you’re not supposed to do that to your bro but hey, love is messy and sometimes you have to do what you have to do.

Somehow, Robin ends up essentially being punished for doing what her gut told her to do.  She ends up giving this long, tearful speech to Lilly about how she regrets dumping Ted, the only man she loved who loved her but now it’s too late, for Ted has moved on and is with the mother now.

I mean, yeah, any guy who has ever been dumped by the girl of his dreams, his great dream is to find one more girl of his dreams and then have the first girl become beside herself with misery and woe about dumping him.

Long story short, Robin ends up an old spinster in her apartment, apparently a punishment for choosing her career over Ted, but the mother dies because the writers just didn’t have the guts to let the Ted/Robin romance go.  The show closes with an old Ted rushing to an old Robin’s apartment to profess his love, his kids giving him his blessing as much time has passed since “The Mother’s” death.

Sigh.  Just…yeah…sigh.  The happier ending would have been that Robin isn’t a bad person for recognizing what she wanted and going for it, even if that meant putting career over love.  She had confidence in herself that she’d find love after her she found her career.

The happier ending would have been that Ted didn’t lie down like a dog and die because Robin didn’t love him.  He kept putting himself out there.  He kept trying.  He finally met his second dream girl.

The happier ending would have been that Robin and Barney, two adventurers, end up together, and Ted and “the Mother” two homebodies who yearn to be loving, doting parents, end up together.

But nope.  No.  We get to meet the mother and then she’s taken away.  I mean, I guess in a dark way, that’s a happy ending for Ted.  He gets his second dream girl and then he also gets to be with his first dream girl as an older man.

But for a show called, “How I Met Your Mother” everyone naturally assumed the end of that title should be, “How I Met Your Mother…and How We Lived Happily Ever After.”

Nope.  Instead, the show should have been called, “How I Met Your Mother…and Boy Am I Glad that Bitch Croaked So I Can Finally Bone Robin Now that She’s So Old She’s Given Up On Finding Anyone Else to Bone Her!”

Guess that title would not have been as catchy.

Don’t get me wrong.  If you haven’t seen it (why did you read this then) you should still watch it.  I laughed.  I cried.  Honestly, at times I debated whether to continue to watch the show because some of the heartaches and regrets, sadness over failures and bad decisions really got to me and made me relive my own pain in my mind…I mean, that’s not a good thing to happen but it speaks to how well written the show is.

But wow.  That ending really stunk.

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Glow – More In-Depth (After Watching Full Season) Review (2017)

Hey 3.5 readers.

So, I ate these episodes up like popcorn over the weekend and I have to say that yes, it’s worth watching.

I especially like the overall theme that this is a bunch of failures who are tired of failing and want a win.

Pretty much all of the women are failed actresses, babes who moved to LA seeking stardom but got crap instead.  GLOW is their last chance for TV notoriety.

Sam Sylvia (Marc Maron) is a B horror movie director, addicted to booze and coke.  GLOW is his last chance to do something that people might like, plus producer Sebastian has promised to fund his next movie, as no one else in Hollywood seems interested in doing so.

Sebastian aka “Bash” is a rich young man who has everything and access to a ton of his wealthy mother’s funds.  He could do anything but he has essentially taken all of the opportunities his mother could give him and squandered them.  He wants to be a big time Hollywood big shot and sees GLOW as his ability to buy his way into the big time.

Most of the girls have their own “I’m trying to make a comeback” story but the two main wrestling gals in particular are Ruth Wilder (Alison Brie) and Debbie Eagan (the amazing big breasted Betty Gilpin.)

SIDENOTE:  You get to see Brie’s boobs but Gilpin’s big ripe casaba melons are never unleashed.  What a ripoff.  Maybe Netflix can offer her some more dough to go topless in season 2.

Anyway, Ruth takes acting very seriously, going to all sorts of acting classes, appearing plays – she treats acting like any other job.  “You should hire me because I have the credentials.”  But no one is hiring her, and GLOW is her last shot at stardom.

And not to give it away, but Debbie’s husband, Mark (Rich Sommer) is a dick cheeseburger with extra buttwipe fries.  Seems lame because if Debbie were my wife, I’d worship her and those magnificent mammaries and do whatever she required of me to maintain her everlasting happiness.

But that’s me.  I feel bad for Sommer.  He’s been typecast as a dick.  He’s a dick in GLOW and he was a dick in “Mad Men.”  Mad Men was in the 1960s.  GLOW is in the 1980s.  Casting agents must be all like, “We need an actor to play a dick in a period piece!  Oh, I know!  Call Rich Sommer!”

Returning to the main point, yes, even Debbie seeks a comeback, becoming a pro-wrestler to get back some of the control she lost at home.

SPOILER ALERT:

I particularly enjoyed the USA vs. Russia i.e. Debbie as Liberty Bell vs. Ruth as Zoya the Destroyer.  People think of the Cold War as a 1950s/1960s thing but it was even happening in the 1980s, though Reagan and Gorbachev did a lot of work to cool it down by 1990.  Ironically, it seems to be heating up again today.

At times, the show also looks at past issues through present eyes.  All of the characters played by the girls are stereotypes.  One wrestler is a black woman called “Welfare Queen” who laughs at the audience about how they all have to work while she stays home and lives off their tax dollars.  She even pulls food stamps out of her bra and throws them at downed opponents.

Meanwhile, an Indian woman plays a Middle Eastern terrorist character, reminding people that terrorism (and related stereotypes) were alive in the 1980s.  9/11 had not happened yet, but as the show points out, terrorist airplane hijackings were constantly in the news.

Interesting to note though you do get to see the dark side of these stereotypes.  At times, the girls object, then they get roped into thinking it’s ok and will help them on the road to stardom, then they see how ugly and obnoxious the crowd gets, hating on the wrestlers because some in the crowd are too dumb to realize that characters like “Welfare Queen” and “Beirut” are real people underneath the costumes and are not the characters they are portraying.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.  Come for Brie’s cheez-its.  Stay for (we can only hope) the great unleashing Gilpin’s sweater cannons in season two.  Let me know in advance if that’s going to happen, Netflix.  I want to take a day off just to watch.

 

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TV Review – GLOW

Alison Brie’s boobs!  Alison Brie’s boobs!

“Community” fans rejoice!  “Annie’s boobs” are finally on screen!

BQB here with a review of the new Netflix comedy/drama “GLOW.”

There was a period of several years where I would watch Alison Brie play it straight as a young, suffering wife to a philandering scoundrel on “Mad Men” only to flip the channel and watch her play perky, nerdy overachiever Annie on “Community.”

Now, it’s like she’s all grown up…and showing her boobs.

“GLOW” is the tale of the “Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling,” the cheap and cheesy 1980s all female wrestling show, where scantily clad women would put on stupid costumes, speak in politically incorrect accents, make jokes that would totally not fly today, body slam the crap out of each other and do their best Hulk Hogan with boobs impression.

It’s the 1980s, so think big hair and yuppies galore as the flower children of the past are gone and money grubbing social climbers have taken their place.

Alison Brie stars as Ruth, a down and out actress who has moved from Omaha to LA.  She’s classically trained and has appeared in a number of plays, but can’t get a paying acting job to save her life and is facing all kinds of financial woes.

Enter GLOW – a new wrestling show directed by B-movie, super crappy horror film director Sam Sylvia (Marc Maron) who revels in showing how little he cares about this project and how deeply below him he deems it.  Maron puts his comic skills on display as he occasionally takes cocaine snorting breaks to ridicule the ladies, tell them how ugly, stupid and useless they are, etc.

When Ruth auditions, she too believes the show is beneath her but faced with either calling it quits on her dreams of fame or getting in the ring and rolling around with the gals, she chooses the latter and a star is born.

I have only watched the first episode thus far, but it caught my interest, so I will keep watching. While I am a fan of Jenji Kohan, this show seems to take a different turn from the snappy one liners of Weeds and Orange is the New Black.  The show features a darker, subtle, understated form of comedy and it’s more of a dramatic period piece than anything else.

I know from Mickey Rourke’s The Wrestler, professional wrestling isn’t all it is cracked out to be.  Sure, it may be “fake” but there’s a lot of physical activity going into those pratfalls and body slams.  It takes a toll on the body and the slightest mistake can leave a person badly injured.  I think that angle will be explored as we delve deeper into the show.

I never really watched “GLOW” as a kid.  I was aware of it but for whatever reason, never checked it out.  I was only a little kid during the 1980s and Hulk Hogan vs. the Iron Shiek captivated me.  I stuck with men’s wrestling all through high school, even in the Hulkster’s evil NWO days.  I was aware of women wrestlers and lady wrestlers would occasionally stop by to duke it out on men’s wrestling but overall, I guess GLOW was one of those things that escaped me.

But as long as it features Annie’s boobs I will keep watching.

What I liked about the first episode the most is it seems like it will be a show about losers who are tired of losing and fighting desperately to become winners.  We see Ruth living a life of absurdity as a budding actress, waiting in audition rooms filled with candidates all vying to play a secretary on a TV show with a five second line.  We see her paying the little money she has for acting lessons from a teacher who keeps falling asleep during her performance.

We see Sam on the tail end of his directing career, down and out, cast aside from making the movies he loved, directing a bunch of crazy women as they beat the crap out of each other.

Neither Sam or Ruth think GLOW is worthy of them…but they both see this as their last shot to do something worthwhile with their lives, so they are going to fight for it.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.

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Bring Back 2 Broke Girls!

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.

This probably sounds like an unmanly post but whatever.  I like “2 Broke Girls.”  It’s my kind of humor.

I just finished it up to the end of the sixth and apparently last season.  I mean, I don’t want to spoil it but suffice to say the girls have better luck at life this season than the previous seasons.

Still, the overall point of the show is to highlight the struggle people have, especially young people who grow up thinking the world will be their oyster only to face the grim reality of every door of opportunity they try to walk getting slammed in their faces.

Along the way, the come across all sorts of characters who are also down on their luck.

Perhaps it seems silly to worry about a show that’s basically a big pile of fluff but from the very first episode, the girls chart out a course – they’re going to lift themselves out of poverty and become big time cupcake selling superstar moguls and I just think CBS is in the wrong for ending the show before that happens.

So if any other network out there wants to pick it up for at least a final wrap-up season (I’m looking at you, Netflix) I know you’d at least have me as a viewer.  I can’t guarantee my 3.5 readers will come along.  They never listen to me.

Overall, it sucks when networks do this.  These shows build up fans over the years that grow attached to the characters and invest time in watching their stories.  It’s uncool to leave the fans hanging.  We were told Max and Caroline would be super, ridiculously successful one day.  We should find out if that happens.

Hollywood, if you can’t make this happen, at least put Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs in something else.  Kat, and her copious bazongas are a delight.  Beth is fabulous too though she lacks Kat’s bazongas.  (As far as I know it’s cool to joke about this as it is a running joke in the show.)

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Top Ten TV Dads of All Time

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Happy Father’s Day, 3.5 readers.  Today’s the day to grab the family patriarch a cigar, a beer, and a steak and treat him like a king, to make up for the other 364 days a year where you walk all over him.  Come on.  You know you do.

In honor of this illustrious day, from BQB HQ in fabulous East Randomtown, it’s the Top Ten TV Dads of All Time:

#10 – Ward Cleaver (Hugh Beaumont) “Leave it to Beaver”

The man worked hard and he rested hard.  Came home every day to a clean house and a nice home cooked meal.  June would have his slippers and newspaper waiting for him so he could chill by the fireplace.  He’d dispense some words of wisdom to his sons, Wally and the Beaver, but then June would take care of all the washing their clothes and cleaning behind their ears bullshit.  Yup, you might assume June went out of her way to keep her man happy because it was the 1950s but I submit that maybe, just maybe, Ward’s pimp game was strong and June bent over backwards for Ward because his bedroom game was strong.  (I assume off camera Ward and June pushed their twin beds together and knocked boots.  Where else did Wally and the Beaver come from?)

#9 – Ben Cartwright (Lorne Greene) – Bonanza

Based on modern standards, you might assume that Ben Cartwright was a very long suffering, put upon, taken advantage of father seeing as how his three adult sons, Adam, Hoss, and Little Joe all stayed on the family ranch well into adulthood and oddly enough, despite coming from a super rich family, none of the boys ever found a long lasting relationship with a woman.

But then you have to remember that the family homestead, “the Ponderosa” was said to have taken up a large chunk of Nevada so…yeah, if your Dad owned Nevada then you can be given a pass for still living at home when you’re forty.

Ben would lead the boys on all sorts of adventures every week – robbers, cattle rustlers, scammers, schemers and the like.  Also, did I mention the Cartwrights were rich?  So literally ever other villain was like, “Those dirty rich ass Cartwrights screwed me over so now I must have my revenge!”

Shit.  Everyone dumped all their problems on the one percent even in the 1800s.

Still.  I feel bad that Adam, Hoss, and Little Joe had such little game with the ladies.  I mean, seriously, if you can’t get your hands on some poon with a pickup line like, “Hey baby, my pops owns Nevada” then you are hopeless.

#8 – Dan Conner (John Goodman) Roseanne 

This show gave the nation a glimpse into how the other half lived, and if Roseanne was the anti-June cleaver, then Dan was the anti-Ward.  Chronically unemployed, audiences got to see the toil that struggling to be a good provider for his family can take on the male ego.  Dan was practically laid off every other week, but after taking a hit to his self-esteem, he’d pick himself up, find a new job, or create one if he couldn’t find one, doing all sorts of menial labor.

Along the way, he’d put up with bickering daughters, a bickering wife and sister-in-law, dopey young men who didn’t seem like they’d amount to much of anything chasing after his daughters, he’d be left unappreciated often but he muddled through.

Most men wish they could be Ward with June fetching the paper and slippers but alas, most men are like Dan, coming home tired after a long day at work only to be chewed out by an angry wife and have to put up with a bunch of nonsense from smart aleck kids.

#7 – Fred G. Sanford (Red Foxx) – Sanford and Son

Sigh.  It’s inevitable.  If parents live long enough, they eventually become the kids and the kids become the parents.

Fred and his son, Lamont own an LA junk dealership in the Watts neighborhood of LA.  Lamont, well into adulthood, dreams of going out into the world on his own and being his own man.  Alas, he’s so worried about his troublemaking father that he sticks around, afraid that the old man will ruin himself with one of us ill advised get rich quick schemes.

And did Fred appreciate his son?  Not outwardly, seeing as how he openly referred to Lamont as “dummy.”  But he loved him, as he loved his long deceased wife Elizabeth, so much so that the slightest symptom of illness would cause him to grab his chest, look to the sky and shout out, “This is the big one!  I’m coming to join you, Elizabeth!”

We have a mother’s day and a father’s day.  There should probably be a “Caretaker of a Very Difficult Elderly Parent Day” to honor people like Lamont.

#6 – Andy Taylor (Andy Griffith)  “The Andy Griffith Show”

That opening scene says it all.  Even though Sheriff Andy Griffith is an officer of the law, he always has time to sneak off of work and take his son Opie (little Ron Howard) fishing.  It probably helped that they lived in a small town where the only criminal was town drunk Otis who would report to the station whenever he had one too many and lock himself in.  Plus, Deputy Barney Fife (Don Knotts) usually had shit on lockdown.

#5 – Tony Micelli (Tony Danza) – “Who’s the Boss?”

You got to love a man willing to go the extra mile for his daughter.  Down and out ex-baseball player Tony Micelli, a true manly man, takes a job as housekeeper for big shot businesswoman Angela.  You’d think that would be a surefire way for most men to feel like their balls have been snipped off and put in a mason jar, but Tony never lost his manly machismo no matter how many beds he made or meals he cooked.

#4 – Dr. Jason Seaver (Alan Thicke) – “Growing Pains”

Yes, it was the 1980s, the country was getting a little less “traditional” and women were working more.  Thus, Dr. Jason Seaver sets up his psychiatry practice in his house (hopefully he had a separate entrance for all the crazies) thus giving him more time at home to watch over the kids while wife Maggie went to work as a journalist.

Yes, like Tony Micelli, he was another man who pushed through this non-traditional situation while retaining his manliness and keeping his nut sack intact.

RIP Adam Thicke.  You are missed.

#3 – Danny Tanner, Jesse Katsopolis, Joey Gladstone (Bob Saget, John Stamos, Dave Coulier) – “Full House” 

Oh, the best laid plans of mice and men.  When Danny Tanner’s wife kicks the bucket far too soon, he recruits his brother in law Jesse and friend Joey to move in and help him raise three precocious daughters.  Danny would be epically lame, Jesse would still find time to jam with his rock band, and literally no one thought it was creepy that Joey lived in the basement and talked to his puppets.

“Men can be mothers too!” Hollywood cried and alas, we menfolk have been fetching our own newspapers and our own slippers ever since.  I doubt there will be another Ward every again.  I hope Ward knew how good he had it.

#2 – John Walton, Sr.  (Ralph Waite) – The Waltons

It was depression era Virginia and John Walton Sr. literally had like nine trillion kids.  Seriously.  The family was a big ensemble cast and I can’t count how many kids were living in that house.  The man was severely put upon, running a struggling saw mill and doing other odd jobs just to make ends meet, taking care of his voluminous family as well as his elderly parents.

Somehow, he did it all with a grimace on his face that often turned into a smile.  Plus, even though he and his family were poor as hell, he didn’t give his son John Boy shit about being a writer.  John Boy’s struggles to become a famous writer was the main plot point of the show and if you’re a struggling writer, you know that even in families that aren’t struggling through the depression where everyone’s walking around barefoot because they can’t afford shoes, the family patriarch is usually screaming at the kids to drop ideas about pie-in-the-sky dreams and focus on something practical.

Hell, my Uncle Hardass commands me to stop writing and get a real job every day even now.

But nope.  John Sr. never slapped John Boy upside the head once and told him to drop his stupid books and get a real job.  He didn’t even slap son Jason upside the head and tell him to drop that stupid banjo, stop trying to become a musician and get a real job.

The man just continued to suffer, sawing extra wood and taking extra jobs all the while his dumb sons kept writing and playing music.  If you are a creative person just starting out in the world, pray for a father like John Walton Sr.

#1 – A TIE!

Homer J. Simpson (Dan Castellanetta) “The Simpsons” and Al Bundy (Ed O’Neill) – “Married with Children)

Homer J. Simpson is literally dumber than a box of rocks.  He’s also extremely lazy, often found asleep at the switch at his job at the nuclear power plant or enjoying a tasty donut.  “Mmm donut.”

Yet, somehow he always finds the time to make Marge suffer with one of his ridiculous schemes, or to strangle son Bart (yet avoid capture by child protection services) and to be made to feel stupid by brainy daughter Lisa.

He may be bald, but otherwise, he hasn’t aged since 1989.  Oh, the benefits of being a cartoon.

Meanwhile, Al Bundy would come home every night from his job at a Chicago shoe store were obese women would give him shit for not being able to find shoes that would fit their enormous feet.  His wife, Peggy and kids, Bud and Kelly, would treat him like a human ATM machine, fighting over who gets to snatch what little money was left in his wallet.

Yes, the Ward days were gone, as Peggy refused to cook, or clean, or literally do anything to contribute to the family’s well-being other than to sit on the couch and eat bon bons all day.  Meanwhile, Kelly was the town tramp who would bring home a series of idiot boyfriends whose asses Al would have to kick while Bud was something of a boy genius yet shared in his father’s inability to get any respect from anyone.

Yes, Al was miserable but he didn’t take it lying down. With his next door neighbor/friend Jefferson, he established the organization known as “No Ma’am” (the National Organization of Men Against Amazonian Masterhood) where he and likeminded, put upon men would meet and complain about how their wives didn’t appreciate them.  Also, they would drink beer.  Lots of beer.  In my opinion, the No Ma’am episodes were among the best of that show.  Why that organization didn’t get off the ground with a chapter in every city and town I’ll never know.

In retrospect, it seems kind of odd to me that Al was so pissed off every time wife Peggy demanded sex.  I mean, Peggy was no Marilyn Monroe but she was still pretty hot, and if anything, a lack of sex is usually a husband’s burden.  But I assume the joke was that married people find themselves stuck in a rut, putting up with the same ole, same ole, day in and day out.

Sure, Al may have lusted over his copies of “Bigguns” and taken the occasional trip to the nudey bar with Jefferson, but he always came home to Peg.

Plus, you have to hand it to a man who is able to make a single moment last a lifetime.  No matter how bad things got, Al always reminded people of his life’s single greatest accomplishment – he once scored four touchdowns in a single game.

YOUR FAVORITE TV FATHERS

Is your favorite not on the list?  Discuss in the comments.

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RIP Adam West – 1960s Batman

Hey 3.5 readers.

BQB here.  You know, after a while, I decided I wasn’t going to write about every celebrity’s death.  Unfortunately, they happen often, and talking about it just makes me sad.

But this is a nerd blog and Adam West is an icon to nerds everywhere.

When I was a kid, I loved Batman.  The Michael Keaton Batman movie came out in 1989 and I became obsessed with the idea that maybe a man could become a superhero without any superpowers but rather, just a lot of money and training.

The training would be easy to find, I thought, and what kid doesn’t automatically assume that he’s going to be a billionaire the second he becomes an adult?

Oh well.  My Batman plan didn’t pan out, although I did become the owner of a blog read by 3.5 readers, so I’d say I broke even.

After school, I would watch reruns of the old 1960s Batman TV show.  I’m not sure as a kid I got the humor.  The writing seemed hacky and even as a boy I remembered scratching my head and thinking, “Bat Shark Repellant?  Really?”

I also was incredibly confused as to why every episode ended on a cliffhanger where Batman and Robin would be put into some kind of intricate killing device set up by the evildoer, only to easily break free in the next episode.  One wonders why the villain just didn’t pull out a gun and blast the Caped Crusader and the Boy Wonder, but I suppose that would have been anti-climactic.

All I know is that even though you knew they were going to get free, that dramatic voice announcer asking “Will Batman escape this time?  Tune in next week, same bat time, same bat channel” always got me to tune in to the same Bat channel at the same bat time.

But I loved the show, the bright colors, how it looked like a comic book had been brought to life, complete with the “Biffs” and “Pows” flashing on screen during every Batman vs. henchmen scene.

It was only as an adult that I realized a) the writers were goofing on the comic book genre and b) it was the 1960s, a time when adults were expected to put away childish things and comic books were considered the ultimate in silly kid stuff.  Attempts to portray Batman as a serious crimefighter would have fallen flat.  Therefore, the only way Batman could have succeeded was as a wacky, campy show for kids.

Adam West played the role perfectly, being very serious as Bruce Wayne/Batman, saying ridiculous things in a completely deadpan style, as if you were the one who is an oddball for thinking it is weird that Batman keeps a hefty supply of Bat Shark Repellant on hand at all times.

In later years, Adam West found a resurgence as his fans got older themselves.  He was cartoon-ized as the Mayor of Quahog, Rhode Island on Family Guy, again called upon to say things that are hysterical in a voice that says, “I don’t think the Mayor realizes this is hysterical.”

One thing to keep in mind is that without the 1960s Batman show, all subsequent Batman films and possibly other comic book superhero films, TV shows may not have ever happened.  The Hollywood suits had to be shown that comic book fans would follow their favorite characters to TV and film, and West paved the way.

He will be missed.

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