Judging A Dawson’s Creek Pocket Book By Its Cover

A couple of years ago, Molly was kind enough to send me a care package of books, most of which are geared towards a younger audience, because she gets me. One of the books in said package was a novelization of Dawson’s Creek, called A Capeside Christmas.

Here I am reading A Capeside Christmas while we were waiting to get into the Dawson’s Creek Writers Reunion at ATX TV Festival in June

It seems as if novelizing popular TV shows seemed to be a big 90s thing that brought in all the cash for these already hit programs. I’m pretty sure I read one or two of the Full House books, but there was also a collection of Buffy, Charmed, and Roswell ones floating around too. But the thing about these was that they were never *quite* in canon with the shows they were derived from.

I recently finished A Capeside Christmas, and hands down, it was one of the worst things I’ve ever read. But I finished it, so I guess it wasn’t that horrible. I thought the story was going to follow the gang during Christmas and some kind of trouble that ensued (per usual) around this time of year in the Cape, but instead, it was 146 pages about the Capeside Follies aka the town Christmas pageant that all of them are in. Dawson is lured in as director, Jen is the stage manager and Joey and Pacey are in the show showing off their talents – IN THE SHOW. It was a little off, but I could see how it still fit in with the show in general. But since Andie found a love interest in the book, it also lead to confusion as to whether it takes BP or AP (Before Pacey/After Pacey). It read like a DC fanfic, but was juuuust good enough to get picked up by a lesser known publisher. And for all we know, the Dawson’s Creek line of books could be just that.

Yes, there’s more than one of these books besides A Capeside Christmas. Although I don’t think I’ll be paying $.75 cents + $5 shipping to purchase “Too Hot To Handle”, I do want to appreciate these books for its comedic value. All of the novels have a corny subtitle, one that was probably from the same vault where your dad gets his Dad Jokes from. Just like I didn’t really know what A Capeside Christmas was about prior to diving in, I’m going to do the same thing and do exactly what you SHOULD do with any Dawson’s Creek novelization – judge a book by its cover.

**Also, each real description ended with:  

“Joey, Dawson, Pacey, Jen.”

Four fifteen-year-olds ready to take on the world.

They’re learning about life, and learning how to love. **

Shifting into Overdrive

Assumed Plot: Joey is eager to get her driver’s license, and since her older sister Bessie is too busy at the B&B and with her baby (and her hubs is mysteriously absent), Joey has to call on the help of one of her friends to pass the test. Since Dawson’s too focused on his latest film project for the Rhode Island Film Festival, Pacey offers to give her driving lessons in his pickup. Their road is a rocky one at the start, with constant bickering and stressful backseat (frontseat) drivers. However, it’s eventually smooth sailing for Pacey and Joey as she nears her test – but will the actual test be their budding romantic relationship? *Pacey actually taught Joey how to drive, right?*

Actual Plot: The road calls… Joey and Jen totally need a Dawson-free zone, so when Jen’s wealthy cousin invites her to an elegant Sweet Sixteen party in New York City, Jen coaxes a reluctant Joey along. Meanwhile, Dawson and Pacey are hot on their trail, dying to know what the girls are up to. The guys hit the road. And the road hits back….

Is high society ready for Jen’s ex-boyfriend Billy, and Danny, a sophisticated senior who’s totally into Joey? “And two sleepless gate-crashers?” It’s party time….

Major Meltdown

Assumed Plot: Now Juniors, they gang (excluding Pacey) are freaking out over the upcoming SATs and pressure of college in general. Studious Joey is taking extra SAT prep courses to bump up her score from 1400 to at least 1525. Jen is deciding whether she wants to go to college at all and Dawson is torn between going to Los Angeles or New York for film school. However the one thing they all have in common is the dilemma of whether they’re making the right decisions about college at all, a choice that will effect the rest of their lives.

Actual Plot: Jen hopes that a ski trip to a fancy Vermont chalet will enable her to rekindle things with Dawson, who is in turn occupied with his feelings for Joey; while Pacey looks forward to conquest over the ski bunnies.

Double Exposure

Assumed plot: Jen and Joey decide to take a photography class together, and one of their projects is to pick someone or something that has great value and serves as an inspiration to them as part of a photo project. Separately, the both Jen and Joey pick Dawson – and jealousy ensues. Will Dawson help out the new girl in town or the girl who’s been in his heart for his whole life?

Actual Plot: The Ice House is in serious need of funds, so Joey takes matters into her own hands and finds work as an underwear model, but when her pictures end up on the Internet, heads begin turning at school.

Don’t Scream

Assumed Plot: In the book version of one of the famous Halloween episodes, Pacey convinces everyone to join him on a trip to Salem to check out the place where the actual witch trials took place. Strange little things keep happening while they’re there – water glasses get knocked over with no explanation, doors keep shutting with no wind in the air, and even Jack’s going crazy because he keeps thinking he sees his grandmother everywhere they go – a grandmother who died five years ago. In Salem.

Actual Plot: “LIGHTS, CAMERA, SCREAM” Has Dawson’s dream finally come true? A low-budget teen horror film is shooting in Capeside and Dawson desperately wants to work on the set. This could be the professional break he’s been looking for an he’s really excited. That is, until Jen lands the job he wanted. Meanwhile, Joey loves the attention she’s getting while spending time with the movie’s to-die-for lead.

Too Hot To Handle

Assumed Plot: It’s summertime in the Creek and when they’re not working at the Ice House or at the video store or at Dawson’s parents’ restaurant, the gang spend most of their time at the beach. It’s there that both Pacey and Dawson meet some particularly attractive ladies, causing jealousy to stir inside both Andie and Joey, respectively.

Actual Plot: Pacey has a great idea to raise money to protect Dunn’s Lighthouse from developers. Students will volunteer to dress as celebs, and other teens will bid on them. The highest bidders for the stars will own them for a day. Who would turn down this chance to fulfill his or her fantasies?

Running On Empty

Assumed Plot: Jack confides to Jen that he’s gay, a confession he’s too scared to come forward with to both his family, friends, and especially girlfriend Joey. The pressure of being who people think he is and who he truly is gets to him, and it’s only Jen who can help him through it.

Actual Plot: Bessie and Joey’s plan to rake in the dough with paying guests during Capeside’s “Weekend of the Whales” festival goes south fast when Bessie sprains her ankle, spoiled potato salad knocks out all the cooks in town, and it rains and rains and rains. Pacey, Dawson, Jack, and Andie are eager to help out…but Andie’s got her hands full with the handsome twin brothers staying at Gram’s place, Dawson’s dealing with another obnoxious B&B client, a poetry-loving houseguest totally crushes on Joey, and there’s not a whale in sight! Looks like it’s gonna be a long weekend…

Trouble in Paradise

Assumed Plot: It was going well for soulmates Dawson and Joey for a while, before they separately started to realize that it just wasn’t working out romantically. After they spend a weekend in Paradise, Connecticut with Jen, Andie, Pacey and Jack on a skiing trip, their already tense relationship comes to a head when they’re forced to come forward with their true feelings during an intense round of Truth or Dare.

Actual Plot: It’s the return of Jen’s cousin Courtney the Perfect. Grams is thrilled. Jen and Joey are not, and their instincts are right: Courtney is definitely out to stir up trouble.

Playing for Keeps

Assumed Plot: In order to make some extra money in hopes of saving it for a new car, Pacey starts investing in off-track betting. Andie starts to notice that his hobby is soon becoming an addiction, as she sees he’s losing more money than he’s investing. Will Andie’s pressure to stop his gambling ways push Pacey to clean up his act or be on the brink of a breakup?

Actual Plot: Summer is finally here and the gang nab jobs as counselors at Camp Takabec. Jack is the football counselor, Dawson does audiovisual, Joey’s in arts and crafts, Jen and Pacey are directing the camp musical, and Andie is an academic tutor for challenged kids.

They’re managing to have a blast, even though Jen and Joey both fall for the same mysterious college guy from England. Meanwhile, a friendly color war is developing into “The Sex Wars,” pitting the guys against the gals. But who will win this friendship tug-of-war?

Tough Enough

Assumed Plot: Dawson’s secret love for the WWE is revealed.

Actual Plot: North…by Northwest? When Principal Green introduces a mandatory new program called “SpringPlan” at Capeside High, Jen, Joey, Pacey, Jack, Andie, and Dawson all sign up for projects that interst them. But Princpal Green has other ideas, and they find themselves assigned to “Character Building Through Wilderness Training” in the wilds of North Carolina. Oh yeah.

Wilderness Camp is run by a former marine drill sergeant who makes the Godfather look like Mother Teresa. Pre-breakfast runs, splittng wood, poisonous-snake identification classes. Tension is running high, but there’s only one way out of the woods for Jen, Joey, Pacey, Dawson, Jack, and Andie.

Calm Before the Storm

Assumed Plot: A huge winter storm is heading to Capeside, and everyone is preparing for the worst before hunkering down for what’s sure to be the worst storm in years. But tensions are already high for Joey and Dawson (who just broke up), Joey and Jack (whose kiss led to said break-up), Andie and Pacey (who are secretly working through Andie’s mental problems) and Jen (who is still coping with the death of her grandfather). They end up locked in the school for hours, since the storm came in early, and they are forced to stick together and hash out their problems while waiting for the storm to pass.

Actual Plot: “Whales mate for life.” “At least they know what they want,” Joey thinks.

Sometimes her relationship with Dawson seems so complicated. Even more so when her class field trip to Billings Island, a nature preserve off the coast of Capeside, is blown apart by a freak storm. And Joey and Dawson are separated from Pacey and Jen. Now they’re lost in the woods… stranded in an old cabin together, cold and shivering, alone in a storm… eager for warmth.

 

Gritty, Dystopian ‘Little Women’ Plotlines

Remember Little Women? Of course you do. It’s the 1860s tale of 4 New England sisters – the bitchy one, the one with a complex gender identity, the social anxiety one, and the other one – learning about life, love, and saving your work in case of manuscript fire.

Except now that the C.W. is getting into it, Little Women is going to be more like this:

Little Women is described as a hyper-stylized, gritty adaptation of the 1868 novel by Louisa May Alcott, in which disparate half-sisters Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy band together in order to survive the dystopic streets of Philadelphia and unravel a conspiracy that stretches far beyond anything they have ever imagined – all while trying not to kill each other in the process.

Okay, we can work with that. I read Little Women probably a dozen times as a kid, and I lived in the dystopic streets of west Philly. Here are some sample plotlines:

  • When the girls are sorted on … I don’t know, Sorting Day … in the burned-out shell of the Reading Terminal Market, Meg is a Carer, Amy is a Flouncer, Beth is a Die-er, but Jo… Jo is OTHER and must hide out in the garret of Aunt March’s house so The Faction doesn’t enlist her.
  • Aunt March’s house is, like, somewhere in Delco.
  • The girls from the ruling class all collect L.I.M.E.s, or ligament-installed mechanical elements. They’re like weird extra robot arms and legs. Amy, being poor, buys a sawed-off body part from the black market instead … until the schoolmaster throws it in the snow. Gritty.
  • Beth, a meek child, frequently steals away to Laurence II, the mega-computer next door where the brain and memory of Mr. Laurence were uploaded before he was captured by … Them. I guess.
  • “They” have maintained a ruling society that has cut the lower class off from the modern world, but Meg infiltrates at Sally Moffat’s ball on the Main Line.
  • Meanwhile, Jo must hide the burned control panel of the wire tap she wears to the event by standing awkwardly against the side of the room.
  • In a feral state of fear and mania, Beth beheads a hitchhiking robot that she meets on one of her few trips out of the home.
  • Amy has to conceal her radioactive superpowers that she acquires after she falls through a crystallized chemical layer while sludge-skating on the Delaware.
  • She is saved by Jo, who is still furious that Amy smashed the hard drive for her allegorical exposee on Them.
  • Dystopian Jo didn’t save her work in a second location, either.
  • And Dystopian Amy is still a bitch.
  • A group of young rebels, led by Jo and Laurie, meet in a secret cell in Manayunk. It’s up to Operation Pickwick to save the day.
  • Instead of being reasonably good at piano and an accomplished artist, respectively, Beth and Amy are an EDM D.J. and a computer graphic programmer.
  • With the underclasses and recent immigrants cut off from the health care system, Beth takes it upon herself to care for a struggling foreign family in the grips of scarlet fever. After beating the disease, she lives under a cloud of weakness and brittle introversion, until eventually relapsing and dying in her teens. Okay, so you don’t really have to change that one. Like I said, grit. Pure dystopian GRIT.

Okay, so this is not going to be good. And if it airs, I’m watching every week.

ICYMI: It’s Going Down I’m Yelling, ‘Oop’

It’s sad times, but today is the first day without Titanic on Netflix Instant, but all the more reason for you to either dig up your Titanic double VHS tape set, special edition DVD, or script, all of which I have. I wish I was kidding.

Queue Adieu: Titanic

I always stock my Netflix queue with the best of intentions, but in real life 90% of my Netflix viewing consists of rewatching shows like Parks and Rec or Friday Night Lights. Another 5% is documentaries that help me fall asleep, like a child’s favorite lullaby if lullabies were about unsolved murders and obesity. I have weird dreams. Then the final 5% is the movies that have sat on my queue for months, only for me to forget about until after they’ve left the site. Well, no more. Every month …. if I remember … I’m going to watch one of the movies that Neflix is about to bump and blog about it. First up: Titanic.

The Movie: Titanic (1997)

Expires On: August 1.

Watch or Rewatch: Rewatch, I have been a human living on earth for the 18 years since Titanic came out. 18? That can’t be right.

Should You Watch It? If you’ve never seen Titanic … YES. I assume even most teenagers who weren’t alive/ were babies then have seen it on TV by now, but maybe not. Also, if you haven’t watched it for years, it’s worth a rewatch to see if you still remember all of the dialog (I do, apparently).

Thoughts During The Movie:

  • In my childhood I thought the Keldysh scenes were great, but now that I can get my fix of Titanic wreckage footage elsewhere it’s super boring.

    Fun fact: I’m fascinated by ship wrecks.

  • Also everything the Keldysh guys say is so cheesy. I can’t even pick one thing. Every line, and every delivery, is just dripping with schmooze and …. wine coolers? They all seem like guys who would drink wine coolers.

    Your face is stupid and you’re stupid.

  • When Titanic mania was in high gear I thought Kate Winslet was the prettiest person ever. Fine, normal. But not normal is praying – literally praying – that I could have Rose’s hair. Still sounds almost normal? Wrong. Because I have curly red hair. What was I even after? Just leave out more tendrils and get on with your life.
  • Plus we live in the future and there are tutorials now:


Remember the height of LeoMania? It’s still there (it’s like the wind, you can’t see it but you can feel it), but more prominently when it comes to Oscar time, because the man hasn’t won a damn Academy Award yet. I want to make an addition to this post, BTW, since the trailer for Leo’s new movie The Revenant came out, and lit’rally everyone is speculating this could actually be his Oscar-winning role. Let’s hope.


Leonardo DiCaprio, The Internet, and You

On November 11th, 2013, Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio turned 39 years of age. 39. That’s one year away from 40. Leo is officially like, an adult. Perhaps the age was jarring because in my mind, he is forever 23 years old. If you do the math (which, I mean, don’t), that brings us to 1997, when he was in Titanic. You guessed it folks – I, like many girls of my generation – was a total Titanic fangirl. I saw it 5 times in the movie theater, purchased every single item of memorabilia (including the script) and wore out tapes 1 & 2 of the VHS copies. In fact, I was so obsessed with Leo himself that I made it a mission to watch every single movie he was in (note to parents: don’t let your 12 year old watch The Basketball Diaries without knowing what it’s about first) and even used the name “Julieta”  in Spanish class as an ode to Romeo + Juliet.

Anyways, because I am a Leo fan, I’ve always remembered his birthday, but I never would have imagined he would have a bash like he did on Sunday. Apparently, Leo is a big rap fan, and invited his FRIEND 2 Chainz to perform. Oh yeah, AND Kanye West.

The party at Tao in NYC ended up being a charity event too, because he raised $3 million for his environmental foundation, so all in all not too shabby. But thanks to social media and the internet, there are plenty of videos and pix to make us *almost* feel like we were there.

Then again, Leo has somehow been a constant presence on the internet, despite the man himself being a more reserved and private celebrity. Case in point: Memes.

Just like it’s difficult to find a person who hates Leo IRL, the internet feels the same adoration for him, by making him the subject of many a meme. So to celebrate Leo in all his glorious 39 years of existence, here are some of the greatest viral items of one of the greatest actors of our generation.

Strutting Leo

The one that stands out the most – strutting Leo. Originally taken while he was on set filming Inception, the folks of the interwebz took this comical pic of Leo and Photoshop him into various other scenes.

Inception Leo

This was taken straight from a scene in Inception where Cobb (Leo) is talking to Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy), but Leo’s reaction face is what got the internet nerds all in a tizzy.

Rage over Leo’s lack of Oscars

Pretty self explanatory. The Academy hates Leo. The Internet hates the Academy.

Bad Luck Leo

In which Jack Dawson looks happy on the outside, but on the inside, his heart is frozen over.

Poppin ‘n Lockin Leo

If this doesn’t convince you to see Wolf of Wall Street, I don’t know what will

Basically, this was just posted everywhere and anywhere and sometimes in wall form.

Time-Travelling Demon Leo

THIS THEORY IS TOO GOOD IT FREAKS ME OUT. *read more here!*

Saturday Spotlight: Netflix-ish

HERE

I didn’t really think about it until we had two Netflix-based posts in one week, but summer is Netflix season. There’s precious little live TV on, and everybody’s so busy that it’s just the time to squeeze in a quick movie or some 22-minute episodes. Here’s what we were into:

  • As of post time, Titanic is no longer on Netflix. But our hearts will go on (GET IT?) and so will our blog post memorializing our rewatch of the movie before it left the site. And let me tell you, our Jack Dawson blinders prevented us from properly appreciating Tommy Ryan and Fabrizio when we were younger.
  • Out with the old, in with the new… which is also old… because Wet Hot American Summer is back, bringing us back to the first week of camp … 15 years after the last week of camp. But it’s not confusing, it’s wonderful, and the Wet Hot American cast has done some great things since the original.

THERE

Wet Hot American All-Star Performances

Listen up losers – today is the day we’ve been waiting for for 14 years. It’s time to finally go back to Camp Firewood, where the sexual tension fills the humid Maine air and hits you like a disgusting sticky wall of regret and the counselors could honestly not give two shits about their campers. I’m so excited.wet-hot-american-summer--first-day-of-camp-poster

We’re going back to 1981, but this time around, a few days before the kiddos arrive, hence, Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp. The new Netflix prequel of eight glorious episodes comes out today, and previously released intel reveals that it looks exactly the same (in a good way), but with even more star power than before, which seems impossible. For the prequel, co-creators David Wain and Michael Showalter recruited some of today’s hottest stars, including Jon Hamm, Kristen Wiig, John Slattery, Jason Schwartzman, Chris Pine, Josh Charles, etc. etc. etc. While I’m looking forward to seeing these folks at Camp Firewood, I’m also looking forward to seeing the old counselors back on campus again. Particularly because they’re playing a few days younger than what they were in the movie they filmed 15 years ago.

And 15 years ago, a lot of these cast members were still flying under the radar of fame. For Bradley Cooper, it was his first feature film, and there’s still a good chunk of the world who didn’t even know he was in it. David and Michael sure know how to pick them, and as we can see from the careers the cast has had since then, everyone’s doing just fine. But while they have had unforgettable roles they will be known for for the rest of their lives (Leslie Knope, Effie Trinket, Det. Elliot Stabler), these accomplished actors have their fair share of underrated performances. So in honor of going back to Maine, here are some of my favorite roles Camp Firewood alum have taken on since 1981/2001.

Amy Poehler as Susie

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance:  Sondra in A.C.O.D.

You love seeing Amy and Adam Scott as Leslie and Ben, but do you think you’ll love them as stepmother and stepson? The surprising answer is yes. If you’re wondering – but they’re one year apart in age, how is that possible?? That’s why it’s funny folks. Sondra is a short-tempered rich bitch who doesn’t particularly care too much about being a mother figure to Adam Scott’s character, and she brings the laughs (as always). Plus the dynamic between them is reason enough to see this movie.

Bradley Cooper as Ben

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Holden Wilson in Valentine’s Day

We all know how big of a star B Coops has become since this movie. And as previously mentioned, WHAS was Bradley’s first feature film coming straight out of the Inside The Actors Studio school and oh boy what a role it was. Relatedly, Bradley was in, IMHO an underrated movie, Valentine’s Day, which follows in the style of Love Actually and He’s Just Not That Into You. He plays a soldier who meets Julia Roberts on a plane and maybe I was too engrossed in the other B-X plots but I definitely did not seeing his ending coming.

Michael Ian Black as McKinley

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Phil Stubbs in Ed

Michael Ian Black is best known for his usually over-the-top comedic roles, but he toned it down a bit for dramedy Ed, a series that aired the entire four years we were in high school, and I feel like I was in a small group of teens who watched it in its entirety. MIB played one of the employees at bowling alley Stuckeybowl, which is owned by the titular Ed. MIB brings the comedy to the series as like the odd guy (out), bringing the necessary townie strangeness needed for the small town life. (PS: full eps are on youtube!!!!!)

Elizabeth Banks as Lindsay

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Avery Jessup in 30 Rock

Elizabeth Banks is one of those people who is loved by all and can do pretty much anything she’s asked to play. For the record, Avery Jessup is one of the best characters she’s ever played because she’s so insane and so real that it hurts so good. However, I think it’s worth noting that Elizabeth is an exceptional dramatic actress as well. Specifically in THG: Mockingjay Part 1, she obviously doesn’t have as many scenes as Katniss but the sorrow and despair in Effie’s being is so heartbreaking, which is all Elizabeth. More dramatic roles, please!!

Paul Rudd as Andy

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Mike Hannigan in Friends

It’s worth noting that no one has aged. Not one bit. Especially Paul Rudd. He’s had so many excellent roles over the years that sometimes it’s easy to forget roles that seemed fairly small compared to what else was going on in the rest of the movie/tv show. I.E. Mike, Phoebe’s hubs on Friends. It’s hard to be the outsider within the group of six, but Mike fit in so well. He was a perfect match for Pheebs and could actually tolerate her weirdness by complementing it with his own absurdities.

Christopher Meloni as Gene

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Ray Whelans in Veep

Although Chris Meloni is probably best known as Elliot Stabler, Chris Meloni has done his fair share of comedies, obviously incuding Wet Hot American Summer. He uses that ridiculousness from the kitchen and brings it to roles like Veep, where he had a mini-arc as VP Selina Meyer’s Trainer Wellness Advisor, who she *spoiler alert* ends up sleeping with.

Ken Marino as Victor Kulak

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Vinnie Van Lowe in Veronica Mars

I will always post this video when I get the opportunity. Ken Marino is a genius.

Joe Lo Truglio as Neil

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Lonnie in I Love You, Man

Like Paul Rudd and Ken Marino, Joe has had a bunch of great roles since WHAS, but this one cracks me up every time I see it. Also, I just watched The Wedding Ringer, and it’s basically the same movie as I Love You, Man, right?

A.D. Miles as Gary

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: A.D. Miles in The Tonight Show/Late Show with Jimmy Fallon

A.D. was kind of the silent forgotten hero in WHAS, but A.D. IRL has gone on to become one of the best in the comedy biz. He was hired as the head writer for Jimmy’s Late Night show and currently serves as the head writer for the Tonight Show. In this recurring sketch with Justin Timberlake, A.D. goes back to his camp roots and reminds me of Ug Lee from Salute Your Shorts.

Molly Shannon as Gail von Kleinenstein

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Val in Will & Grace

We all know that Molly Shannon is hilarious. This is a given. But she played such a creepy funny character on Will & Grace as the insane neighbor. Like a pop up book from hell, Val legit just shows up when you least expect it and she’s one of my favorite characters Molly’s played since Sally O’Malley.

Judah Friedlander – Ron von Kleinenstein

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Brian in Sharknado 2: The Second One

Since I’m most accustomed to seeing Judah in big glasses and a trucker hat with some kind of riddle on the front, it took me a second to realize that he was fending off killer sharks in Sharknado 2: The Second One. It’s like the equivalent of Rachael Leigh cook taking out her ponytail and glasses in She’s All That.  A WHOLE DIFFERENT PERSON.

Marguerite Moreau as Katie

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Katie in Parenthood


I feel like this picture accurately depicts the entire arc (albeit small) Marguerite had on Parenthood. She was dating Crosby in the first few episodes and eager to have a baby, and wanted to freeze his sperm, but Crosby was all Helllll nahhh son I ain’t bout that life ::enter Jasmine and Jabbar:: Bye Katie.

Kyle Gallner – Bobby’s Buddy

Post Camp Firewood Choice Performance: Beaver Cassidy Casablancas in Veronica Mars

GUYS I HAD NO IDEA KYLE GALLNER WAS IN WET HOT AMERICAN SUMMER AS THIS KID. BRAND NEW INFORMATION.

 

Queue Adieu: Titanic

I always stock my Netflix queue with the best of intentions, but in real life 90% of my Netflix viewing consists of rewatching shows like Parks and Rec or Friday Night Lights. Another 5% is documentaries that help me fall asleep, like a child’s favorite lullaby if lullabies were about unsolved murders and obesity. I have weird dreams. Then the final 5% is the movies that have sat on my queue for months, only for me to forget about until after they’ve left the site. Well, no more. Every month …. if I remember … I’m going to watch one of the movies that Neflix is about to bump and blog about it. First up: Titanic.

The Movie: Titanic (1997)

Expires On: August 1.

Watch or Rewatch: Rewatch, I have been a human living on earth for the 18 years since Titanic came out. 18? That can’t be right.

Should You Watch It? If you’ve never seen Titanic … YES. I assume even most teenagers who weren’t alive/ were babies then have seen it on TV by now, but maybe not. Also, if you haven’t watched it for years, it’s worth a rewatch to see if you still remember all of the dialog (I do, apparently).

Thoughts During The Movie:

  • In my childhood I thought the Keldysh scenes were great, but now that I can get my fix of Titanic wreckage footage elsewhere it’s super boring.

    Fun fact: I’m fascinated by ship wrecks.

  • Also everything the Keldysh guys say is so cheesy. I can’t even pick one thing. Every line, and every delivery, is just dripping with schmooze and …. wine coolers? They all seem like guys who would drink wine coolers.

    Your face is stupid and you’re stupid.

  • When Titanic mania was in high gear I thought Kate Winslet was the prettiest person ever. Fine, normal. But not normal is praying – literally praying – that I could have Rose’s hair. Still sounds almost normal? Wrong. Because I have curly red hair. What was I even after? Just leave out more tendrils and get on with your life.
  • Plus we live in the future and there are tutorials now:

  • Now that I’m a decade older than Young Rose, it’s actually Old Rose I want to emulate. Not now, but eventually, it would be great to be super old with tunics and beaded earrings and sweet extra-long gray hair. Not sure at what age you’re supposed to get into pottery.
  • Did anyone ever make up lyrics to the Titanic theme music that plays throughout? You know, the one that’s like ba da BAAAA doddle-oddle-daa-AAA, daa da daaa dum dummm. Like “on this booooat, that you call unsinkable, you’re all gonnnn-a die” or “she’s so riiiich, but he is a poor boy, how will happppp-en next?”
  • Thing I Never Noticed Before #1: You see them lift Rose and Jack’s sex car onto the ship.
  • Thing I Never Noticed Before #2: FABRIZIO. I was all about the J.D. before but it’s actually all about Fabrizio. RIP (spoiler?), I’m gonna never forget you.
  • Third class is more multicultural than an elementary school math textbook word problem.
  • Thing I Never Noticed Before #3: Actually, also Cal. He’s sort of hot and smarmy and personality-wise, maybe a better match for Rose than Jack was, if he weren’t such a jerk.
  • During Titanic mania, did anyone else scour passenger lists to see if maybe just maybe you had an ancestor on board?
  • The GCI people you see on deck when they pan over the ship look like they’re from a CD-ROM game. #TECHNOLOGY
  • “You’re gonna cut her meat for her too there Cal?” Maybe this is what Molly Brown really sounded like – I assume so since Kathy Bates is a great actress- but I feel like a character from Oklahoma somehow ended up in Downton Abbey.
  • Thing I Never Noticed Before #4: Tommy Ryan. I had some serious Jack Dawson blinders.
  • Thing I Never Noticed Before #5: When Rose and Jack plan on going to the pier and riding horses…. ugh. Those couples who have been together less than a day and they’re already planning vacations together.
  • I cannot be the only one who uses “start from the outside and work your way in”  to deal with extensive place settings.
  • I recently saw a picture of c. 1998 Nick from the Backstreet Boys and thought it was Jack for a second. That hairdo made everyone look the same.

    Obviously no Jack Dawson.

  • You know how period dramas usually look influenced by the time they were made? For instance, all these 2010s movies set in the 1800s, where the women have long, loose curls with layers when their hair definitely would have been worn up if they weren’t hookers. Or the ’70s hair on all of the men in Little House On The Prairie. Well, Titanic did a great job of actually looking like 1912, but I have a sinking feeling that if it were made today, all of the women would have 50% more eyebrow action.

    Mary Pickford knew what was up.

  • Is Rose responsible for how half of all girls born after 1997 have the middle name Rose? Don’t worry, Abigail Rose or Hannah Rose or Madison Rose, it’s a very pretty name, I’m just curious.
  • And how a quarter of all boys born after 1997 are named Jack (my nephew is one, though he’s technically named after my grandpa instead of Jack Dawson).
  • If the Titanic sailed in 2015 the portrait scene would be 5 seconds long and consist of Rose taking a nude selfie, which would quickly circulate through the passengers before reaching Cal. #busted
  • The thing is, I feel like Rose and Jack must have had better options in the cargo hold than the backseat of a car, right? Jeepin’.
  • Victor Garber works a lot, so it’s super distracting that every time I see him, I think “Mr. Andrews, Mr. Andrews!” in that Dorothy Gale voice Rose uses.
  • Nobody ever says it, but the Heart Of The Ocean was one tacky-ass Claire’s Boutique-looking necklace.
  • Surely the Titanic had a more sophisticated security protocol than shackling thiefs to pipes?
  • Any lawyers here? Then maybe you better remember Lady Duff-Gordon from Wood v. Lucy, Lady Duff-Gordon. It’s a nice Cardozo opinion that has become sort of a standard in contracts texts. It’s also an early instance of celebrity clothing endorsements.

    $12, what a steal! Or actually I feel like that would have been fairly expensive.

  • New obsession I just discovered during this rewatch: behind the scenes set photos from Titanic. I mean:
  • I remember reading that they went back for the Titanic re-release and changed the stars to be more accurate. That’s hardcore, but also makes me wonder if it’s fair to do do-overs. And if so, why didn’t they also replace those 1997 technology people on the ship?
  • Why did they make Old Rose make that stupid noise when she threw the necklace in the water?
  • Jack died, and that’s sad, don’t get me wrong, but also would you toss away a multi-million dollar necklace because of some dude that you banged once and were into for three days when you were a teenager? I’m sure Lizzy had some car payments or whatever that that would have really helped with.
  • Okay, the Celine Dion song is sort of a jarring 90s slow pop jam after watching a movie set in 1912. Also, also. This isn’t related. But when I was walking at lunch last week a guy called to me “Celine Dion, come kiss me!” and usually I forget those kinds of comments as soon as they happen, but I am still puzzling over it. First of all, I don’t look like Celine Dion, but it made me wonder if people can tell that I’m part French Canadian. I always thought of them as a people who don’t look like anything in particular. Also, is Celine Dion even considered attractive? She looks normal, but I’ve never heard anyone be like “you know who I wish I looked more like? Celine Dion.” Eh, maybe it was because I was wearing a backwards tuxedo and the heart of the ocean. Coeur de la mer, I call it
    celine

    Wait… DO I look like Celine Dion?

     

  • She’s dead, right? Guys, she dies, yeah?

Woman Crush Wednesday: Tori Kelly

Sometimes it takes a while for people to catch on to truly talented artists. And while there will unfortunately always be super exceptional singers and musicians out there that will never get the recognition they deserve, there are times when, as Oprah says, “Luck is preparation meeting opportunity”. That is exactly what happened to Tori Kelly.

Tori is a California native who realized her talented at a young age, and because she grew up in a post-American Idol world, she auditioned for shows like Star Search and America’s Most Talented Kids (where she beat out country heartthrob Hunter Hayes).

Because of her appearances on reality competition shows, she signed a couple of record deals but those fell apart. So like Justin Bieber, she took her talents to YouTube and became one of the biggest singers to come out of the early days of YouTube fame. One of her most notable vids was of this mashup with another popular YouTuber, a beatboxer, as they covered Frank Ocean’s Thinkin’ Bout You.

This is when I first heart of Tori Kelly’s name, but I didn’t think anything much of it besides a passing viral video. There were other videos that were far more stupid than this that I had to give my time to. By 2010, Tori was old enough to try out for the big leagues – American Idol.

Simon wasn’t a fan and never really was throughout her tenure on the show, which was shortlived after she was cut just before the Top 24. But, the journey obviously wasn’t over for her there.

In 2014, Scooter Braun, you know, the dude responsible for making Justin Bieber from Usher cover singer on YouTube into BIEBER, signed on as her manager, and slowly but surely, she made a TV appearance here, had a song in a soundtrack there, and now it seems as she’s finally hit her stride.

More and more people are starting to notice Tori for her pure talent, and it’s not only that, but her perseverance through the slow burn, if you will, to get to where she is now.

She performed Should’ve Been Us, the latest single from her new album Unbreakable Smile, on Live! With Kelly & Michael recently, and it was the first time I heard the song, more specifically, an acoustic version. I’m a sucker for acoustic versions, and I S2G, I rewatched this over and over again because I could not believe how amazing she sounded. #THOSERIFFSTHO

From there, I obviously had to go back to her back catalogue but also research recent performances, like this other acoustic one of her lead single Nobody Love:

Or her tribute to Smokey Robinson at the BET Awards:

Or the time she covered Ed Sheeran:

And the time she collaborated with Ed Sheeran:

And the time she almost outsang Ariana Grande:

Whatever the case may be, I’m so glad I found a new powerful female artist to obsess over, and I hope you do too.

Listen (or buy) Tori’s latest record, Unbreakable Smile! I swear I’m not getting paid for this.

 

The Sorting Hat: Random Stuff, By Hogwarts House

Keep your eye out for owls! This week is big in the Harry Potter world: JK Rowling, Harry, and, of course, Neville Longbottom all celebrate their birthdays at the end of July. We cannot reflect on the Potterverse without asking that eternal question: which house are you in? We’ll be forthright. In Pottermore, both of us were given the choice between Gryffindor and one other house — Ravenclaw for me and Hufflepuff for Traci.  We aren’t house-ist …  but we also acknowledge that each has its flaws. Gryffindors are self-important, Ravenclaws are nerds, Slytherins are cold, and Hufflepuffs are human puffalumps. We love them all, and believe that anything – anything – can be sorted into a house.

Fast Food Restaurants
  • Taco Bell: Slytherin
  • McDonald’s: Gryffindor
  • Arby’s: Ravenclaw
  • Wendy’s: Hufflepuff

Reasoning: Nothing says “resourceful” like turning a Dorito into a taco shell. McDonald’s are the beloved popular favorite. Arby’s takes itself seriously and is true to its quirks – like, who serves roast beef? And I’m not sure if Wendy’s even knows that it’s a restaurant, plus their mascot is a bit on the adorable side. Like, it chose to represent itself with a grinning freckly child. That’s pretty Hufflepuff.

Coffee Chains
  • Dunkin Donuts: Gryffindor
  • Starbucks: Slytherin
  • Tim Hortons: Ravenclaw
  • Gloria Jean’s: Hufflepuff

Reasoning: The most outwardly ambitious coffee franchise – convinced that people will spend more money on it because it’s clearly superior – would have to be Starbucks, the Slytherin of the coffee world. Dunkin gets stuff done – America runs on it, after all – which is more of a Gryffindor thing. Gloria Jean’s is frothy yet unpretentious – it’s for anybody. It’s at the mall and all the sizes are in English. Hufflepuff. Tim Hortons just gets down to business – they’ll get you your double double and they won’t screw up the order.

Social Networking Platforms

 

  • Facebook: Slytherin
  • LinkedIn: Ravenclaw
  • Friendster: Hufflepuff
  • tumblr: Gryffindor

Reasoning: Social justice warriors, but up for a a little diversion? That’s tumblr, and that’s Gryffindor. Cunning Facebook will use all of your personal data… but they’re devious yet fair, because everything is spelled out in the terms of service. LinkedIn isn’t exactly fun, but if you think outside the box you can find it very useful. Friendster… bless.

Styles Of Jeans
  • Carpenter: Hufflepuff
  • Skinny: Slytherin
  • Boyfriend: Ravenclaw
  • Bootcut: Gryffindor

Reasoning: Carpenter jeans aren’t stylish, but they’re cut so that anyone could wear them. Plus “unafraid of toil?” I always imagined that Slytherins would be the more fashion-forward witches and wizards. Boyfriend jeans are perfect for curling up in the library or working out at the lab. Bootcuts are relaxed enough to take your on all sorts of adventures – not so loose or so rigid that you can’t save the day in them.

90s Nickelodeon SNICK Shows
  • Clarissa Explains It All: Ravenclaw
  • Are You Afraid Of The Dark: Slytherin
  • All That: Hufflepuff
  • Hey Dude: Gryffindor

Reasoning: Not all Slytherins are bad, but they are less likely to shy away from the Dark Arts. Clarissa, with her homemade video games and quirky style, was obviously a Ravenclaw. All That was open to everything – sketches, music, vital information for your every day life. And Hey Dude was all about working together for a common goal.

March Sisters
  • Meg: Gryffindor
  • Jo: Ravenclaw
  • Beth: Hufflepuff
  • Amy: Slytherin

Reasoning: This might be an unpopular opinion, but creative, unconventional Jo – brave as she was – also reminds me of deep-thinking, brainy Cho and Luna. Dutiful Meg seemed more concerned with following the right path and being fair to everyone. Beth was just a sweetheart, and preferred staying at home to going out into the world – although she even made grouchy Mr. Lawrence love her. Amy was a social climber who would do what it took to have the life she felt she deserved (she was also a total bitch, and I say that with love).

Hair Accessories
  • Scrunchie: Hufflepuff
  • Bobby Pin: Gryffindor
  • Headband: Ravenclaw
  • Those snappy clips that gymnasts have: Slytherin

Reasoning: Scrunchies are soft and work on all hair types, even if they aren’t cool by conventional measures. Bobby pins can pin back your hair, but they’re also useful little tools  in all sorts of jams. Headbands are practical with a bit of whimsy – your hair is off your face, but still flowing free. Remember those hair clips that, like, Dominique Moceanu used to wear back in the day? It was sort of harsh but unbelievably effective, like the Slytherin of hair accessoreis.

WB Shows
  • Dawson’s Creek: Gryffindor
  • Felicity: Ravenclaw
  • Gilmore Girls: Hufflepuff
  • Seventh Heaven: Slytherin

Reasoning: Felicity was the most, well, collegiate show. All those sweaters. Very Ravenclaw. Gilmore Girls is a feel-good show about a town where everyone is accepted, basically. Dawson’s Creek, with (admittedly whiny, forehead-y) main character Dawson, was about young people who, in their hearts, were always trying to do the right thing. Seventh Heaven was a calculated grab for an untapped market of fairly right-wing fans.

Children’s Story Book Characters
  • Madeline: Ravenclaw
  • Arthur The Aardvark: Gryffindor
  • Pooh: Hufflepuff
  • Max, of Where The Wild Things Are: Slytherin
Board Games
  • Monopoly: Ravenclaw
  • Candyland: Hufflepuff
  • Clue: Slytherin
  • Risk: Gryffindor
Taylor Swift Songs
  • Our Song: Hufflepuff
  • Bad Blood: Slytherin
  • You Belong With Me: Gryffindor
  • Mean: Ravenclaw
Top 10 Boy Names
  • Noah: Gryffindor
  • Mason: Slytherin
  • Ethan: Ravenclaw
  • Jacob: Hufflepuff
Top 10 Girl Names
  • Ava: Slytherin
  • Mia: Hufflepuff
  • Charlotte: Ravenclaw
  • Emily: Gryffindor
Birthday Party Decor
  • Balloons: Hufflepuff
  • A “Lordy Lordy Look Who’s 40″ sign: Slytherin
  • Streamers: Gryffindor
  • Noisemakers: Ravenclaw

 

Questions, Comments, and Concerns – Kidnapped: Hannah Anderson

It’s Monday, so that means it’s time for another installment of Questions, Comments, and Concerns! Just kidding. There’s been no real precedence for this. Our last QCC was posted on a Thursday. But because it’s Monday, you already are over work, so spend some time reading this overview of yet another Lifetime movie featuring a random C List star.

Disclaimer: I only watched this because Scott Patterson, aka #LukeDanesDreamMan is in it. He was on an episode of the Gilmore Guys podcast and plugged it during his interview, so I decided to check it out. And by check it out, I mean, write a post for the blog (two months later). I know nothing about it except the description in Time Warner:

16-year-old girl, Hannah Anderson, is kidnapped in a San Diego suburb by a family friend, and her mother and brother are killed. A media frenzy occurs when she is rescued and questions arise about whether Hannah played a part in the murders.

Intrigued? Saw the movie and want to delve into a deep discussion about it? Don’t really care about the movie, but really care about Luke Danes as a questionable suspect in a kidnapping case? Then let’s get this started.

Question: Is Scott Patterson playing a really warped alternate universe version of Luke?

The first scene shows what seems to be police marching through a forest on the hunt for someone, then it cuts to Scott/Luke at a camp site struggling to start a fire. Luke would know how to start a fire. Therein lies the difference. Unless he’s the kidnapper. In which case there’s a huge difference.

Concern: Scott/Luke plays Jim, Uncle to Hannah, supposed kidnapper.

I don’t think I’m going to like this. It’s going to mar my vision of #LukeDanesDreamMan

Photo Jul 24, 2 14 06 PM (1)

Comment: The press is hounding her and her dad at their home.

Like almost following her into their house just to get a statement. This is San Diego, not Stars Hollow, why are they attacking her with such ferocity?

Comment: “Let’s check your inbox”

WHAT KIND OF INBOX IS THIS??
Photo Jul 24, 2 20 25 PM (1)Also, why is she responding to all these comments online? It’s 2015, you have to realize that this is going to be out in the press. Might as well let all those reporters inside, it’s the same thing.

Question: So Uncle Jim isn’t her actual uncle?

He might be a family friend who was obsessed with her and wanted to start a life with this TEENAGER. Hannah says he threatened to murder her if she didn’t go with him.

Comment: HANNAH IS AN IDIOT.

Her online chat made the news. They’re suggesting she had an inapprops relationship with Uncle Jim. They’re calling her the “Lakeside Lolita” (she’s from Lakeside, California)

Question: Are they setting Hannah up to be an aspiring (for lack of a better term) “Fame-whore” who killed her fam to be popular?

The press is hounding Hannah and her dad at her mom and brother’s funeral. Like barged into the church. Her BFF Cassie hands here something that looks like a Starbucks Frappucino to help her de-stress. She spots her younger bro’s teammates (like 9 year old boys in jerseys) and asks to take a selfie, because she’s going to post on Instagram later to “remember him”. This conversation:

Cassie: Look, you’re famous!
Hannah: They love talking about me, that’s all.
Cassie: Maybe you’ll get movie offers.

Concern: The agent covering the murder case seems creepy to me, and held their hug a little too long.


Comment: Uncle Jim’s full name is James DiMaggio (Jim DiMaggio baseball great).

Photo Jul 24, 2 39 54 PM (1)

Because she can point to a girl posting Instagram pictures, doing online chats, and say you’re being flippant about this… You gotta knock it off with the selfies, I already warned you about all that stuff! – Hannah’s Dad

Comment: Hannah is pushing her dad to do The Today Show interview to talk about her story, and the interviewer is Susie Castillo, former MTV VJ.

 

Question: I have a few.

There’s a flashback to a few months before her mom and brother’s death, with all three of them hanging out with Uncle Jim DiMaggio at a cookout in their backyard. First of all, how does Uncle Jim DiMaggio know the fam, since Hannah said she’s known him all her life? Second, did he have a secret affair with the mom. Third, he and Hannah have been making weird eyes at each other and IT IS SO UNCOMFY.

Concern: Uncle Jim DiMaggio wants to take Hannah on a trip (by themselves) to LA. Questionable.

Comment: Fame. Whore.

Hannah: This (Walk of Fame star) is gonna be mine some day.
Uncle Jim DiMaggio: You want that kind of attention, huh?
Hannah: Are you kidding, who wouldn’t want to be famous?

Also, they clearly just guerrilla shot this on Hollywood Boulevard because the people around them (tourists) are blatantly taking pictures of them as they walk down the street. This fan paparazzi isn’t canon for this particular story.
Photo Jul 24, 2 50 51 PM (1)

Concern: I’M ABOUT TO VOMIT

Hannah and Uncle Jim DiMaggio are having lunch in LA, and he awkwardly places his hand on top of hers before she slowly pulls it away. Hehe weirdly gets jealous when she’s texting her maybe friend Dylan. Then he starts mumbling something about “I was just thinking…if you were older… if we were the same age…” and says, “I have a crush on you… like a family thing like I care about you.”

Concern: Uncle Jim DiMaggio texts like … well exactly how you’d expect an adult to text

Photo Jul 24, 2 59 57 PM (1)

Question: Why does Uncle Jim DiMaggio’s house look like a murderer’s cabin in the middle of the woods even though they live in San Diego?

Uncle Jim DiMaggio picked Hannah up, expecting to meet her mom and brother, and he takes her to his home, which turns out to be the only creepy log cabin in SD.

Comment: If an older man brings you to his creepy Cabin in the Woods and he asks you to fetch him a beer before explaining where your family is, something is wrong.

Hannah realizes something is up and attempts to run away but he grabs her and yells, ‘Shut up or I’ll kill you’ then is all like, “JK. Here, put this handcuff on and attach it to the chair and I’m gonna tie your feet together, but everything’s fine.” She should be freaking out more.

He also explains that he his job and didn’t want to leave San Diego, basically because of Hannah. He suggests that they run away and start a new life together, then pulls out a gun and is about to play Russian Roulette with it. I cannot.

Concern: She agrees to go away with him and she says she’s about to vomit – ME TOO – so he gives her like a date rape drug.

Question: Scott is playing him so creepy, am I ever going to look at him the same way again? PROBABLY NOT WHY DID I DECIDE TO WATCH THIS

Comment: HOLY CRAP HE JUST SHOT A DOG. AND THEN BEAT THE MOM AND BROTHER WITH A TIRE IRON. THEN BURNED THE HOUSE DOWN.

Photo Jul 24, 3 17 24 PM (1)

Comment: An Amber Alert is sent out looking for Uncle Jim DiMaggio with Hannah and Ethan (her bro) and there’s an unnecessary montage of randos getting the Amber Alert in the middle of the night.

What it doesn’t show you is that those fuckers make you have a heart attack, and don’t simply blink the flashlight with a faint beeping sound. ‘Fun’ fact: the screenshot above is the actual Amber Alert sent out from Hannah’s kidnapping, and was one of the first of those horrific iPhone alerts ever sent out. Which explains why when I searched ‘Amber alert iPhone’, IRL Hannah Anderson articles came up.

Question: Exactly what type of drug did Uncle Jim DiMaggio give Hannah because it seems she’s like still knocked out

Question: Like has she gone to the bathroom yet?

Uncle Jim DiMaggio and Hannah are now in Idaho and it’s been three days since he’s kidnapped her. Most of the time she’s been sleeping. Also, he makes Hannah carry two 50 pound backpacks while they’re hiking through the Idaho forest, and she trips and does something to her leg and Uncle Jim DiMaggio immed runs to help her. I’m so confused with their ‘relationship’. And later, while he’s peeing on the camp fire, she steals his gun and threatens to kill him but ultimately doesn’t and he knees her in the stomach. Pick a lane.

Concern: Four horseback riders to the possible rescue

They come across Uncle Jim DiMaggio and Hannah and one of the horseback riders is super suspish. The next day, the riders purposely find the unlikely duo, since one of them is a Sheriff and knew something was up and are like, 90% sure Hannah is the kidnapped girl in the news. They question Hannah but she brushes off their concern (such as, why are you wearing the same pajamas two days in a row for hiking?) by saying it was her idea, so the riders leave them alone. AKA they go to the police.

Concern: Uncle Jim DiMaggio gets drunk

Later that night, he gets so close to Hannah that I think he’s about to rape her but then he starts snoring. Thank God.

Comment: When in doubt, start a fire, I guess

A helicopter flies overhead and Uncle Jim DiMaggio’s initial reaction is to start a fire to ‘look normal’ that’s what you do to get someone to save you. Hello?

Question: Does this girl look like Lucy Hale as Aria Montgomery to anyone else?

Photo Jul 25, 1 02 58 AM

Comment: PS – Uncle Jim DiMaggio dies

They show it in the beginning, but the police eventually track them down at the campsite and surround them. Jim tries to fend them off, but a sniper shoots him and kills Uncle Jim DiMaggio.

Question: What is this song?

There’s an end montage of Hannah going back to real life with her dad, and there’s a song being played that’s akin to the Run Like Mad song used to replace I Don’t Wanna Wait on the Dawson’s Creek DVDs. Except more ballad-y. I haven’t been able to find the song online, so I’m thinking it was especially made for the movie. And it is a gem. Some choice lyrics:

I’m standing up, I’m speaking out / Let everybody hear

So I’m gathering my courage / Gonna let my feelings show

The darkest day gets left behind /If you choose to let them go

Its’ never really over /So I take it day to day

With courage and belief I take it all head on / But it’s hard to face it tough to come to grips with what goes on

Still I’m brave enough to look and see / What everybody sees

And deep inside I know they’re never gonna get the best of me

I’m strong enough to carry on / I’m brave enough to grow

I’m strong enough to face it all when I know my heart is true

On the road that leads me home

Comment: Not a fame whore

Despite various Internet theories, Hannah didn’t kill her family to get famous. She is still going strong and and wants to be a firefighter.

ICYMI: Seatbelts everyone!

Guys, I think we can all agree that the Magic School Bus was awesome. But sometimes, it missed the mark. It missed the mark in a really weird way that made me want to crawl out of the school bus and over to Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood.

Frizzle Fails: Majorly Unfun Magic School Bus Trips

Science is cool. When I was a kid my mom was a science teacher, and during the summer I’d serve as a child guinea pig for whatever courses she was taking. I dissected owl pellets, collected pond water, and learned firsthand that science is awesome. And gross. Did I mention gross?

If you weren’t lucky enough to have a scientifically inclined parent, you may have had the next best thing — the guiding, fictional hand of Miss Frizzle, the adventurous, well-dressed schoolmarm from The Magic School Bus. The Magic School Bus was a series of children’s books and cartoons about a group of kids diving head-first into the inner workings of scientific phenomena.

But let’s be real. Teachers are great, but they can’t hit the mark 100% of the time. Here are some Frizzle Fails: those Magic School Bus adventures that delved a little too far into the disgusting, confusing, or downright depressing side of science.

The Magic School Bus Heats Up

Riding on the back of a flea, the Magic School Bus travels with a roadkill racoon on its trip through the animal control center’s crematorium. The kids learn an important scientific axiom: energy cannot be created or destroyed… it can only change form (into a harrowing experience that will haunt you for all the rest of your days).

The Magic School Bus Is In The Money

…as a strain of bacteria being passed from person to person on a dollar bill. The whole gang follows Ralphie’s tooth fairy money as, in the course of a single day, it passes from a man’s unwashed bathroom hands, to the wallet of a lady who just sneezed into her bare palm, before making its final appearance tucked into a g-string at a gentleman’s club.

The Magic School Bus And The Poison Ivy Mystery Tour

WHEEEE! The School Bus slip-slides along the oils excreted from a poison ivy plant, and everyone learns how urushiol can trigger an immune response before – whooosh! – getting knocked out by a hefty, immune-suppressing dose of oral steroids. Will prednisolone make the kids go HAM with mood changes and aggression? Will Frizzle escape the dreaded moon face?

[Guys this isn’t even a book pitch, really, I just have poison oak really bad and this is my life right now.]

The Magic School Bus Peanut Caper

What began as a wacky adventure into the growth cycle of legumes ended three minutes later. Because Keesha has a nut allergy. Read more in The Magic School Bus EpiPen Extravaganza!

Dammit, Friz.


Feeling nostalgia for Magic School Bus now? Let me help you keep that feeling going by reintroducing you to some of the best shows from your childhood.

Educational Shows That Should Get Kickstarted

Last week, one of our Man Crush Monday honorees, LeVar Burton, launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring beloved program Reading Rainbow to classrooms for free and to more platforms than just iPads/tablets, helping kids learn to read and build a love for books. In about 10 hours, the initial goal of $2 million was reached, and almost $3.5 MILLION  has been donated since it launched less than a week ago – and it doesn’t even end until July 2nd.

When Veronica Mars made history last year by raising $2 million in about 10 hours as well, we thought shows like Gilmore Girls and Buffy would be prime candidates for a Kickstarter campaign. Now with Reading Rainbow making strides, I thought about the other educational shows from our childhood that could possibly make a comeback and return to help a whole other generation of kids too. Here are some of my picks, do you have any that you don’t see on the list?

Wishbone

{Ran from 1995 to 1998}

Kids love a talking animal, so when Jack Russell Terrier Wishbone is a sharp-talking pooch, it’s easy to forget that he’s retelling stories from classic literature. Wishbone takes on the role of the titular character in each story as he plays it out in his daydream, while his owner Joe faces some kind of similar situation IRL. If a crowdfunding campaign was launched for the show, maybe the show could just get a revamp and come back to TV. Is there even a show like this on right now? I’ve lost touch with my children’s programming.

Magic School Bus

{Ran from 1994 to 1997}

So this ‘Inside Ralphie’ episode is, for some reason, the most prominent one stuck in my head, even after all these years. Like, Ms. Frizzle just straight up took the class & their Magic School Bus into his body to figure out why he’s sick. Teacher of the year, y’all. Anyways, I feel like Magic School Bus would be a great app for kids, especially with an episode in this vein (pun intended), where it takes them on a journey into the body.

Bill Nye the Science Guy

{Ran from 1993 to 1998}

It depresses me that there are probably kids out there who only know Bill Nye from his time on Dancing with the Stars. Who do kids have to look up to in the media now if they want to be scientists? Bill Nye focused on a certain subject in science each episode, and if he successfully funded a Kickstarter campaign, he should bring his science show to schools all over the world, making it one of those interactive assemblies where the students get out of class but are really just going into another one.

Mr. Wizard’s World

{Ran from 1983 to 1990}

Please tell me I’m not the only one who remembers this show? I feel like it was part of my morning TV programming, in addition to Saved by the Bell (gotta balance it out). Mr. Wizard’s real name was Don Herbert, and he invited kids to his ‘house’ to show them science experiments and it’s definitely not as creepy as it sounds. Apparently Don died in 2007, but if there’s a Mr. Wizard Jr. out there, a Kickstarter campaign would be a perfect way to maybe fund a web series – or perhaps just find a new Mr. Wizard.

Ghostwriter

{Ran from 1992 to 1995}

Confession: I pretended that Ghostwriter was real and used to write messages to him/her in my composition notebook. Alas, Ghostwriter never came.  Maybe it’s because I didn’t have a circle of friends who needed to solve mysteries that the real police couldn’t solve. The whole point of the show was to help kids improve their reading and writing skills, and how awesome would this be as an app? Let’s be real – I would totally download it for myself.*

Name Your Adventure

{Ran from 1992 to 1995}

If you watched TNBC on Saturday mornings like I did, you remember this show, which made kids’ dreams come true. I thought Name Your Adventure was like THE show to be on, since you could literally name your adventure, and it would come to fruition. Kids were able to meet the likes of President Bill Clinton, Tori Amos, and in the video above, the late Jonathan Brandis who starred in the show SeaQuest. The girl wanted to become a director or movie something or other, so host Mario Lopez took her to set and let her hang out. How cool is that? This series showed me that anything is possible and there are so many jobs and things to accomplish out in the world, so I can only imagine what this could provide for kids who only know the life inside their little bubbles. Again, with a crowdfunded campaign, a web series would be perfect for this, and maybe Mario Lopez would even come back to host it.

* HOLY CRAP GUYS – APPARENTLY GHOSTWRITER WAS INTENDED TO BE THE GHOST OF A RUNAWAY SLAVE FROM THE CIVIL WAR HELLO