2018 Winter Olympics Drinking/ Exercise Game

There’s nothing like the Winter Olympics to remind you that you are not, in fact, an elite athlete. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun… or work on your fitness. If you’re having a raucous Olympics party, A) invite us and B) feel free to play the drinking game version (responsibly, and without driving, and you can use water). If you’re feeling a little less-than fit watching all of these grade A humans, dip into our exercise game instead!

One Sip OR One Set of Mountain Climbers (* A set is what you say is a set!)

You wouldn’t know what the event was called if they didn’t tell you, but it could be described as going down a mountain.

You wouldn’t know what the event was called if they didn’t tell you, but it could be described as doing tricks on snow.

You wouldn’t know what the event was called if they didn’t tell you, but it could be described as doing tricks on ice.

NBC kindly lets us know about The Grinch, a movie coming out in a year, or Mamma Mia, a movie coming out in some months.

You find yourself trying to do what the athlete just did in your living room (turns out I can only land a single lutz in my socks)

You spy an athlete’s parent or significant other.

You cry.

 

One Huge Gulp OR One Set Of Bicep Curls

An Olympian is tenuously connected to your hometown (e.g., grandparents live there, went to college for a few semesters, etc).

Rachel Platten and/or Fight Song.

Image result for rachel platten olympics

You see the Korean Handmaid Cheerleaders.

Image result for korean cheerleaders

An Olympian has a personal mascot (e.g., Hanyu with Pooh),

Image result for hanyu olympics pooh

An athlete collapses to the earth after finishing.

Johnny Weir’s outfit is extra even for him.

You see the Olympic mascotImage result for pyeongchang mascot

You ship it.

Image result for virtue moir olympics 2018

Take a Shot OR One Set Of Bicycle Crunches

An Olympian is from your hometown, for real.

A Russian is of such a higher caliber than the other athletes that it feels like they’re doing a different sport.

Image result for medvedeva

A competitor has what you, personally, consider a baby name. So all those toddlers named Mikaela grew up over the past twenty years?

Image result for mikaela shiffrin

Yep. Definitely a grownup.

The announcer is so fired up that they’re shouting like their house just exploded.

There’s innuendo about the Olympic Village.

You see the Korean Handmaid Cheerleaders’ minder.

You’re watching at a time that you consider totally bonkers.

 

Pour A Little Out For Your Favorite Team/Athlete Who Was Robbed OR Sun Salute

An Olympian is over age 30.

An Olympian who’s roughly your peer is now the commentator.

Image result for tara lipinski johnny weir olympics

Leslie Jones sighting

A commentator says the exact opposite of whatever you just said about the event.

The human interest footage includes clips of the athlete doing their sport as an adorable little tot.

Image result for adam rippon childhood

A competitor has a sibling who is also competing in the games.

Image result for shibutani olympics 2018

The human interest footage tries to make the athlete seem like just a normal person (like an average teen, family man, grad student, etc).

An Olympian is not actually from the country they represent.

Scandinavian Olympians and coaches are knitting.

Chug OR Two Sets Of Burpees

An Olympian is over age 40

The commentators repeat whatever you just said

An Olympian has a sibling who is also competing in the games… for a different country.

Image result for sisters hockey olympics

An Olympian is not actually from the country they represent AND their connection to the country is something you, personally, consider pretty weak (e.g, it’s where their husband is from).

There’s a team from a counter-intuitive country (e.g., Jamaican bobsled)

There’s a competitor who clearly isn’t qualified to be there (this “Hungarian” “skiier”)

 

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Questions, Comments and Concerns: The Wiz

Last night, millions of Americans tuned for another edition of NBC’s ______ Live! Last year, we flew with Allison Williams over London in Peter Pan Live! and the year before that, we named our favorite things with Carrie Underwood in The Sound of Music Live! This year, third time proved to be the charm with The Wiz Live! As expected, the telecast dominated social media with viewers’ quips, but perhaps what wasn’t expected was the sheer positivity across the board. We livetweeted it, but we still have a number of questions, comments and concerns about the show, so here’s our post-mortem on the life-changing musical that was The Wiz Live!

Concern: The Wiz is my pop culture blind spot

Oops. Somehow I’ve never seen The Wiz. Not the MJ/Diana movie or anything from the OG musical. I’ve somehow managed to be in the Wizard of Oz musical, see the horrendous recent Wizard of Oz tour, and Wicked four times, but never The Wiz. This might be my downfall. – T

I’ve seen The Wiz, but the first thing I always remember about it is how someone we went to high school with was in an all-white production, which sounds like a joke but isn’t. – M

Question: Is this a modern day musical?

Dorothy’s dressed like she could be from 2015, but also it’s nondescript enough that it could be a generic timeline. Either way, I’m kind of really into it, and her skirt? – T

Into it, too. Those skirts were popular when we were in high school (c. 2000 – 2004), but had moments in the 70s, 80s and 90s as well. I like the nod to the original light blue and red Dorothy color scheme. But then Auntie Em is dressed like Aunt Bea from Andy Griffith.  “Generic timeline” checks out. – M

Question: Is The Wiz a precursor to The Color Purple?

Pretty sure the cart Stephanie Mills leans against is the same one from The Color Purple. – T

Comment: Beyonce took part in this

The cyclone scene almost looks like it was lifted from a Beyonce tour production, or more specifically, the music video for Ghost. By the by, the choreography was done by Fatima Robinson, who has worked with some of the best musicians in the biz, including Michael Jackson, Pharrell, Aaliyah, and the Backstreet Boys, which is the only reason she’s been a part of my life for so long. She did the choreo for iconic songs like Everybody and As Long As You Love Me, and when I hear her name it’s like *Home*. – T

The cyclone reminded me of those trippy live-action children’s shows from the 1970s, like H.R. Pufnstuf and The Wombles. – M

Question: This costume

If I dress up like one of these munchkins for Halloween next year, will I have missed the boat on the zeitgeist of it all? – T

And if I wore the glittery silver Mary Janes, the Scarecrow’s fun bird blouse, and Dorothy’s skirt in my daily life, would you still be friends with me? – M

Question: Omaha?

Was Dorothy always originally from Omaha, Nebraska?? – T

I THOUGHT IT WAS KANSAS. Was “we’re not in Kansas anymore” just a reference to how Nebraska and Kansas are mostly samesies? – M

Concern: I *almost* forgot just how amazing Amber Riley is

OKAYYYY YOU BETTER SING AMBER RILEY!!! #FlashbackFriday – the time my friend and I were on our way to the Glee concert and were belting out Amber’s part in one of the Glee songs in the car, and Amber rolled up next to us and I looked over, felt flushed with embarrassment and she gave a wave before driving off. Moral of the story, leave the belting to Amber. – T

RYAN MURPHY DOESN’T KNOW A TREASURE WHEN HE HOLDS IT IN HIS HANDS. – M

Comment: Life lesson number one:

“There is some nasty stuff betwixt here and there.” – T

Comment: Looks like Lord Licorice’s house

Photo Dec 04, 4 33 42 AM

Pretty sure this set could double for a Candy Land musical. – T

Thing I’d be into: a Candy Land musical. – M

Comment: Life lesson number two + joke

“Sometimes the most dangerous things are also the most beautiful.” “That’s deep, cuz.” – T

Concern: I might be a Shanice fangirl now

Shanice sings Soon as I Get Home, and I’m actually screaming. YASS SHANICE. A STAR IS LITERALLY BORN. WERK. IT. – T

If Shanice Williams isn’t all over the Broadway stage or a movie screen or WHEREVER IT IS SHE WOULD LIKE TO BE MOST, there’s no good in the world. – M

Concern: I already forgot who’s playing the Scarecrow

That’s how good this costume is. Oh JK it’s Elijah Kelly. I’ve watched Hairspray enough to recognize that voice. – T

I hope Elijah Kelly has been living his best life, and I know he’s worked consistently, but I’m still surprised he didn’t get huge after Hairspray. – M

Comment: Apparently you CAN win

During You Can’t Win, the crows are giving me so many jokes (“I’ll catch you on the B-Side”). Also giving me life with this song. Did anyone else notice the stanky leg from the Scarecrow? – T

Comment: I have a bad memory

Ok I thought I didn’t know any songs from The Wiz, but I forgot about Ease on Down the Road. But is the original arrangement as funky as this version? I love it. – T

I feel like you would also know Home, if only from televised singing competitions. – M

Concern: I’m crying again

And this time it’s for this Barbie commercial. – T

Me too, we’re messes. – M

Question: What’s up with this magic oil?

Yo does this magic oil make everyone sing like Ne-Yo tho because I have some choice handsome men I could think of that could become 10 times hotter if they could sing some R&B. – T

Is this supposed to be very sexual or is there a problem with me? – M

Question: Why do we still not have a live audience for this?

Both The Sound of Music and Peter Pan before this were shot without a live audience, and it was awkward when it came to needing laughs for jokes and clapping after big numbers. If this was shot in front of a live audience, there definitely would’ve been a lot of cheers and applause for Ne-Yo’s robot dance break. – T

Yeah, when you have to time the beats to laughter or applause that ISN’T THERE, it doesn’t work. The whole reason they had fake laugh tracks in old shows is because audiences respond better when they hear other people responding. Give these stars an audience next time! – M

Question: Does the scarecrow’s hair look like The Weeknd or nah?

Photo Dec 04, 4 31 38 AM

Comment: That’s a trusting lion

For someone who’s cowardly, the Lion had an oddly easy time to ease on down the road with strangers. Also, David freaking Alan Grier. What a talent. Also the psychiatrist owl really made me chortle. – T

Comment: Nature’s not for me.

These shenans are exactly why I don’t go into enchanted forests with three strangers. – T

Everyone trusts everyone so much.  – M

Concern: I’m crying again

DIDN’T EXPECT TO BE CRYING THIS MUCH AT THE FREAKING WIZ. YOU BETTER SANG SHANICE AND DAG. – T

Question: What are these poppies trying to get at?

“I know just what they want and it’s not gonna happen.”… Is the Lion going to sex these sexy poppies???? – T

No but everything IS v sexual, right? – M

Comment: Ad targeting

I’m just gonna say it – a lot of these commercials are geared towards black viewers. From McDonalds to USPS, there’s a number of them which prominently feature black actors. It’s like when you’re watching BET and the commercials are not quite the same as the ones you would see on say, Fox News. And it’s great on one hand, as in a whole other demographic is being catered to, but like, also, just show the same commercials during an episode of Castle or The Big Bang Theory. That being said, The Wiz being playing on primetime network TV is so incredibly important, because like I’ve said many times before, representation is important. And this cast and crew is doing an outstanding job at it. – T

“the ones you would see on say, Fox News” – Traci, I love you forever. – M

Concern: I FORGOT COMMON WAS IN THIS

Photo Dec 04, 4 42 59 AM

OK BUT COMMON. I WOULD GLADLY BE DENIED ENTRY TO A CLUB IF I HAD FACE TIME WITH HIM. – T

Question: But I do I get into this club frreal tho?

I am LIVING for this Wiz club! It feels like the set of J Lo’s Waiting for Tonight video filled with dancers from the Sprockets SNL sketch with Mike Myers. ALSO, I can’t stop watching this part where they circle around Dorothy & the squad, and they’re vogueing and whacking while the ensemble says, “Live. Werk. Yass. Fierce. Slay. Serve. Fierce.  Twirl.” “I don’t know what none of that means,” says the Tin Man. LOL. – T

The ensemble is everything! They sell it so hard. – M

Comment: Life lesson number three

“The door is just a door.”

Question: Is this secretly a Spice Girls crossover?

We meet Queen Latifah as The Wiz, sporting a Brigitte Nielsen haircut. She also says the phrase, “Tell me what you want. What you really really want.” Is that a Spice Girls ref or coincidence?? – T

Since we’re sharing embarrassing celebrity encounters: at DeGaulle airport c. 2006, I thought my friend said “Queen Latifah just passed away!” I squealed “No, I LOVE Queen Latifah!” But, she said “Queen Latifah just passed by.” Queen Latifah heard, and smiled like the Queen that she is, and was really nice and chit-chatted with a bunch of American college kids, she’s royalty, the end. — M

Comment: Through the wire
Photo Dec 04, 3 38 52 AM

I just realized Ne-Yo sounds like Kanye circa Through the Wire, because the tin is around his face. Still sounds 10 million percent better than I ever will. Also, I’ve never been so attracted to a chunk of metal before. – T

Question: Is a standing ovation a real standing ovation if you do it by yourself?

I legit just stood up and gave the cast a standing ovation after singing We Got It. I’m watching this alone in my living room. I tried looking up this song and I didn’t realize Ne-Yo co-wrote this specifically for the telecast. Amazing. – T

Am I wrong that they included an original song for award nomination purposes? – M

Comment: Praise in the highest to Queen Mary J

Bitch comes on screen and I’m already all SLAY YASSS QUEEN. By the by, I feel like the words screamed out the most by viewers are “YASS” “SLAY” and “QUEEN” over and over again. – T

When Mary J. was on screen I found myself sitting with my chin propped in my hands and the glistening eyes of a child present at the Sermon on the Mount. – M

Comment: No Bad News = No More Drama

WHEN MARY J BLIGE IS SCREAMING AT YOU TO WORK, YOU WERK. – T

Question: Did we switch to another musical’s set again?

I feel like the Brand New Day scene turned into Fela! all of a sudden. Either way, props to DAG for werking this choreo (including some Carlton and Soul Train action) in the ridic lion getup, and props to him for catching Elijah Kelly in his arms at the end. – T

Concern: Have I become an elderly person at age 29?

Queen in a robe is lit’rally me rollin up to the club. And the club is my bed. – T

Comment: The bench is deep

Legit every member of this cast, including the ensemble is fantastic! – T

Question: Can u not?

UZO ADUBA IS A LITERAL ANGEL FROM HEAVEN. – T

She is SO GOOD as Crazy Eyes that I feel like people don’t even realize how beautiful and amazing she is IRL. – M

Question: Is this a Michael Jackson tribute?

Actually is Dorothy’s jacket an homage to MJ??? – T

Speaking of which, it takes guts to take on a role most associated with MJ. Let’s hear it for Elijah Kelly! – M

Concern: I am crying again

I JUST STOOD IN FRONT OF MY TV CRYING. SHANICE GIVING ME GOOSIES. GIVING ME LIFE. I get really emotional when I see people achieving their best, ya know. Shanice was picked out of obscurity (New Jersey) and because of her true talent – and NBC taking a risk on a non-celebrity – she’s truly become the breakout artist of the year.  (Also watch this video of Shanice post-show. All the tears.)- T

Random final comments:

Overall, I loved this Live! version of The Wiz. The talent, the production value, the costumes (by Hamilton costume designer Paul Tazewell), a teleplay by Harvey Fierstein (I KNOW), the choreo (no but did you see that dabbing tho) – everything. But most importantly, I think something changed last night. Changed the landscape of what we expect and see on television and media in general. Like in the 1970s when this musical made its debut, the themes still have a prominent relevance in today’s society. When kids who are watching this with their families at home can see themselves on the screen, it’s progress. And that is the power of art. -T

 

Parenthood Owes Me Money For Tissues

Tomorrow marks the end of an era. After six seasons, our beloved Parenthood comes to an end. It’s been a rocky road over the past few years, and I’m not just talking about the fact that it could’ve been cancelled by NBC at any given second. No, I’m talking about the literal ups and downs this show has taken us in just this little sliver of a peek into the Braverman family history.

“When are we going to know? I need to get off this roller coaster.” – Sarah Braverman having a meta moment while talking about Joel and Julia’s relationship status

Creator Jason Katims has nailed down the subgenre of “Shows That Make You Super Emotional And Attached To Fictional Characters In An Unreasonable Way”, and this is no different. You’ve witnessed it in Friday Night Lights, and you’ve witnessed it with Parenthood. I mean, this guy fucks with your heart so much that it should probably be a crime by now (An example taken from the series finale, which is aptly titled “May God Bless and Keep You Always,” a lyric from Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young,” the show’s theme song. LIKE CAN U NOT).

In saying that, Parenthood is known for its emotional storylines. It’s known for eliciting an unexpected and unmentionable amount of tears. When I went to the PaleyFest panel for the show a couple of years ago, they actually handed out packets of tissues with the Parenthood logo on them. That’s how synonymous crying is with this damn show. Every week, there’s at least one emotional scene where you find yourself with tears in your eyes. Because I’m a crier by nature, this stat is higher for me.

“I think that Parenthood is a good litmus test to see if you’re emotionally okay. If you tune in… and you don’t laugh a little bit, and cry a little bit, you might be a sociopath. You might need professional help.” – Peter Krause on the psychological impact of the show.

And while there have been many scenes that have made our eyes well up, I’ve picked my personal favorites that make me cry just thinking about them. I’m sure the entirety of the series finale will be added to this list, but for now, let’s focus on the magic moments from the past six seasons that will stay in our hearts forever. Like Dawson Leery before her, this is ranked on a scale of 1 to 5 Crying Ambers, 1 being a little tear up in the eyeball region, while 5 is straight up ugly cry pray to Jesus that no one ever sees you.

Thank you Parenthood. We laughed, we cried, we learned more about ourselves. But mostly we cried. So thank you.

*possible spoilers ahead if you’re not caught up. in chronological order! and a lot of mae whitman because she’s the best crier in the world*

Season 2, Episode 17: Amber yells at Seth

1 Crying Amber

amber crying 1

Seth comes back and tries to assimilate back into the family in a totally normal way as if nothing’s wrong and he hasn’t been absent from the kids’ lives, but Amber totally calls him out on it, and you can tell she’s letting out years of frustration in one fell swoop.

 Season 2, Episode 22: Zeek confronts Amber after she gets in a car accident

5 Crying Ambersamber crying 5

Amber’s lowest point comes when she spirals into a drunken depression and gets into a super bad car accident. Luckily she survives and has to face the wrath of Zeek Braverman. He brings her to the junkyard where her totaled car is, and says a line that marked the first time I had really broke down and ugly cried while watching the show:

“I dreamt you, Amber. You do not have permission to mess with my dreams.”

Turns out that the brilliant Craig T. Nelson rewrote that speech on the spot and Mae had no idea what he was going to say. They did it in one take, and that’s the take they used.

Season 3, Episode 4: Alex says a final goodbye to Kristina

4 Crying Ambers

amber crying 4

Haddie’s first real boyfriend, Alex (played by the smokeshow that is Michael B. Jordan), is, on paper, the total opposite from Haddie. When their differences become too glaringly incompatible, he breaks up with her. But when he says goodbye to Kristina, you realize that Alex needed to be a part of this family as much as Haddie needed to love and lose the first boy that completely changed her world. And the Bravermans changed his world too.

Season 3, Episode 17: Julia realizes Zoe isn’t giving her the baby to adopt

5 Crying Ambers

amber crying 5

Despite being all, ‘hey if you’re not using that baby’, and Zoe ‘agreeing’ to give Joel and Julia her kid, Zoe changes her mind at the last minute to raise the child by herself. The moment where Julia realizes the time and effort and heart she’s put into the baby she thought would soon be hers, wouldn’t be going home with her – Julia shatters into a million pieces.

Season 4, Episode 1: Haddie leaves for college

4 Crying Ambers

amber crying 4Before all this Kristina stuff goes on, she and Adam send their first born off to college, thousands of miles away from Berkley to Cornell in upstate New York. A lot of us can relate to this, which is why this scene is so important. So when she says goodbye to her family, she knows it’s the end of an era, and things will never be exactly the same again.

Season 4, Episode 5: Adam talks to Haddie about Kristina’s diagnosis

3 Crying Ambers
amber crying 3

Woof. The whole Krisina cancer storyline is a doozy, but the beginning of the arc brings a lot of tears. From Kristina silently confirming to Adam she has cancer, to this scene where Adam has no choice to talk about her diagnosis with his college-aged daughter, these scenes were always hard to take. But the great thing to take away is that Peter Krause is such an incredible actor. In just this phone conversation alone he perfectly portrays a man who is just trying to keep it together.

Season 4, Episode 5: Kristina tells the family she has cancer

5 Crying Ambers

amber crying 5

This is perhaps the most memorable scene in the entire series. Everything about it is perfect. The family is all gathered and Kristina finally has to tell them she has cancer. It starts with us hearing her say, ‘I have something to tell you’, and the sound goes out. The camera pans to all the family members, and because each actor knows their character so well, they each respond to the news differently. I think my favorite is when the camera goes to Crosby, and he looks like he’s in shock, mainly because he had been giving Adam a hard time about the business, and now he realizes how much of an ass he’s been while he’s been dealing with Kristina’s diagnosis. And he does it in one single stare.

Season 4, Episode 11: Adam watches the video Kristina made in case she dies

5 Crying Ambers

amber crying 5

Kristina suffers a setback in her cancer battle, and in the event something went awry, she decides to make a video for her family. The result is another brilliant scene from Peter Krause, but also one that will tear you to bits.

Season 4, Episode 14: Crosby consoles Julia about adopting Victor

2 Crying Ambers

amber crying 2

For some reason, Crosby and Julia never get a lot of screentime with just the two of them. But this scene features the two babies of the family, with the usually unreliable black sheep of the family, Crosby, assuring smart, perfect lawyer Julia that she’s a better mom than she thinks she is, and that he’s admired her strength for years.

Season 4, Episode 13: Drew comes crying to Sarah after Amy’s abortion

3 Crying Ambers

amber crying 3

After Drew’s girlfriend Amy finally decides to get an abortion, we see Drew having a really hard time coping with it, and he finally lets it all out by just going to Sarah’s house and sobbing in her arms. It’s a realization that while he may not have been ready to be a father, there was still a part of him that thought he could.

Season 4, Episode 15: Joel and Julia officially adopt Victor

4 Crying Ambers

amber crying 4

This is the scene that makes you want to become a Braverman.

“Beautiful family you have.” – Judge

“They’re something aren’t they?” – Zeek Braverman

*Didn’t realize this until I rewatched the clip, but the judge is totally the guy who played the Stars Hollow Rabbi in Gilmore Girls.

Season 5, Episode 10: Ryan tells Amber he’s re-enlisting

3 Crying Ambers

amber crying 3

 Literally as soon as Ryan gets back from duty, he asks Amber to marry her. But after a while, his demons get the best of him, and instead of facing real life and a future with Amber, he decides to re-enlist instead, leaving an extremely stunned Amber speechless and beyond mad, and Ryan numbed from the pain.

Season 5, Episode 18: Kristina comforts Max when he realizes he’s different

5 Crying Ambers

amber crying 5

Max realizes that kids treat him differently because of his Aspberger’s, but doesn’t comprehend why they’re treating him like crap. But the heartbreaking part of this scene is seeing Kristina and Adam, who are not only unable to properly give Max an acceptable reason, but are so frustrated that there’s not much they can do to change it.

Season 5, Episode 21: Kristina says goodbye to Gypsy

4 Crying Ambers

amber crying 4

I know her name on the show is Gwen, but she will forever by Gypsy from Gilmore Girls. Anyways, Kristina became friends with Gwen while they were both receiving chemo treatments, and because Parenthood isn’t one to ignore what happens in real life, Kristina has to give one (teary) final goodbye to her friend, who is nearing the end of a losing battle with cancer.

Season 5, Episode 22: Zeek and Camille slow dancing in the empty house

3 Crying Ambers
amber crying 3

It took some cajoling, but Zeek and Camille finally sold their iconic house. And while we’ve been with that home for five seasons, Zeek and Camille had been its occupants for decades as they raised their kids and grandkids. One of the final shots in the house is the outline of the two heads of the Braverman clan slow dancing in an empty room, acknowledging both the good times that happened there, and the new memories they’ll make in their new home.

Season 6, Episode 10: THE ENTIRE EPISODE

10 Crying Ambers

amber crying 5amber crying 5

WHERE TO FREAKING BEGIN. The entire opening slow-motion montage of all the kids getting the call Zeek was in the hospital (gave me goosebumps). Drew crying in the car after it wouldn’t start. Julia calling Joel her ‘husband’, the makeshift baby shower for Amber where the women give her advice? Honestly cried through 90% of that episode. It was one of the roughest hours of television, ever.

Season 6, Episode 12: Amber names her son Zeek

3 Crying Ambers
amber crying 3

IT’S A FULL CIRCLE, Y’ALL. SHE DIDN’T MESS WITH GRANDPA ZEEK’S DREAMS.

Peter Pan Live! – A LaterBlog

Well folks, it happened. Months of waiting and anticipating and dreading NBC’s live version of Peter Pan culminated in a two hour show last night, and boy did we have a lot of thoughts on it. Like last year’s Sound of Music Live! special, Peter Pan dominated social media last night and we’re still talking about it today. But if you didn’t get a chance to watch with the other millions of folks who tuned in, here’s your opportunity to join in on the conversation with our own recap/liveblog/laterblog of the show (queue up your DVRs or streaming devices or watch on NBC.com if you want to follow along). And if you did watch it, let us know what you thought of a flying Allison Williams and dancing Walken!

peter-pan

Traci: I would like to say that I’ve never actually seen this version of Peter Pan, so I have absolutely no idea what’s going to happen. I mean I know what’s going to happen, but I don’t know what’s going to happen.

Molly: Allison Williams requested that our inner children watch and live tweet this program. I am watching with my 7 and 5 year old nephews and they are already rooting for disaster. You tried, Marnie.

M: Either the audio and video tracks aren’t synchronized or all of this dialogue is lip synced to Ashlee Simpson-level cruddiness.

M: The harmonies on Tender Shepherd are pretty good! The kids are so cute, but the little one seriously looks like Timmy from Passions (who was adorable, so no shade).

T: Allison Williams was on Seth Meyers promoting PP recently, talking about the kid who plays Michael and how he asked her to stop saying the F-word so much. He also told her to eat wheat bread to be healthier. That is what I am thinking about while watching this kid.

T: Kelli O’Hara ::emoji with heart eyes:: (she is Broadway royalty, get to know her)

THAT’S A REAL ACTOR DOG, Y’ALL

I will say that the production value and camera work is great so far, much better than Sound of Music last year.

“I am the master of this house!” – Mr. Darling/ Monsieur Thénardier

T: THAT’S NOT A REAL TINKERBELL, Y’ALL

Say what you will about casting, but Allison Williams is just too delightful and I don’t have it in me to say anything bad about her.

M: AW is the identical hair twin of Androgynous Gym Girl, my college gym’s resident elliptical hog. A.G.G. had that haircut because it was the most workout-efficient, we theorized. And she only ate foods in bar or shake form because they metabolized better. Again, all conjecture. She just really loved that elliptical. Bitch.

T: Yo, Tink is a little bitch, doe.

M: Okay, Gotta Crow was sort of charming. I probably would have had a weird crush on this Peter Pan when I was 10. Crushed on a LOT of gay musical theater boys, y’all.

T: How do babies just “fall out” of their carriages??? #LostBoysMoreLikeDumbBoys

“Girls are much too clever to fall out of their carriage” BUT WAIT THIS IS SO TRUE

M: My 7-year-old nephew just says that Peter “has more magic than my Elf on the Shelf, even.” Okay, Allison Williams. You win this round.

T:  Whoa, I had like a nervous moment for AW when she went up in the flying rig for the first time. This is live television anything could go wrong. You’ve seen that YouTube fail from the high school production of this show, right?!? That’s what I’m picturing. This is obviously very different.

M: Screw it. I’m Flying is charming as hell.

T: Guys, AW is great. Whatever. I HAVE A LOT OF FEELS ABOUT THAT I’M FLYING SONG GOING INTO NEVERLAND THIS IS AMAZING. But also, stop integrating Shazam into my programs.

M: The 4-year-old just asked why they are flying over one of those Christmas villages. Shut it down, we have a baby live blogger on our hands.

T:  How do I get this miniature London cityscape outside my french windows?

T: Melissa Joan Hart has scored a series of commercials during Peter Pan Live promoting WalMart with her real family. Yes, her real family, and the internet went crazy for her attractive husband. My friend Scott had a perfect explanation for this:

T: That is actually Christopher Walken on an NBC live musical special on TV.

T: Christian Borle (Smee/Mr. Darling) look like he could be in Rock of Ages

Photo Dec 04, 9 05 05 PM

M: Well, the children aren’t scared of Captain Hook, but I am. Christopher Walken on a boat? Am I the only one still sketched out about the whole Natalie Wood thing?

T: What I love about Walken is that whoever he plays, he plays it brilliantly but still very Walken-y. Amazing. Also, he’s not even singing HAHAHA I LOVE IT.

OH MY GOD OH MY GOD TAP DANCING THERE IS TAP DANCING I’M CRYING

Photo Dec 04, 9 05 16 PM

M: This soundstage is so amazing that I want to hide out and sleep in it, Basil E. Frankweiler-style.

M: The 7-yr-old nephew would like to know how the Lost Boys got dance lessons if they don’t have parents. Fair point.

T: So many Newsies! Like actual Newsies. Like the Newsies who were on Broadway.

M: I love the cheesy island scenery. I mean that non-ironically. It reminds me of 1960s fantasy kitsch, like It’s A Small World.

M: So do they have to return the crocodile to Rainforest Cafe after, or.. ?

T: THAT’S NOT A REAL CROCODILE Y’ALL.

M: Something feels so wrong about a group of Lost Boys that look, you know, probably sexually active. And the Lost Boys are already forcing the virgin/whore/mother dynamic on Wendy. Congrats, kids. You’ve had a girl for all of 5 minutes and it’s already a patriarchal society.
Again, the LBs are all very good, but this works better when they cast Lost Boys who don’t have 401(K)s already.

T: Random aside: Bri Willy took the night of from the NBC Nightly News to watch AW in her big show. He said, “We will be watching the broadcast – immediate family only – sequestered in an undisclosed location – close enough to the production as to burst through the stage door the moment the credits roll.” CAN U NOT. I STILL CAN’T GET OVER HIM ANNOUNCING SHE WAS GOING TO BE PETER PAN ON TV.

M: EW. Wait a few minutes; when the grown-ass pirates start yo-hoing about stealing Wendy for their mother the Lost Boys don’t look so bad.

M: The Lost Boys are so old that their ratty Neverland clothes are looking like hipstery club clothes. Like a troupe of Lost Bois.

T: Anything that Walken does with his one hook is hilarious to me, apparently. Like this hitting the tambourine mess, I can’t.

… He’s not holding that major note right?? He is. He’s definitely doing that. Fun fact: they do something similar to this in Peter and the Starcatcher, which is a play about making the play of Peter Pan. Christian Borle won a Tony for playing Black Stache in it.

LOLZ TO THEM CUTTING BACK TO WALKEN HOLDING THE NOTE IN THE MIDDLE OF COMMERCIALS

M: On a scale from one to America, how racist is the Native American stuff going to be?

T: Because of social media, we are treated with gems from celebrities such as Anna Kendrick, who just gets it.

T: Is this where that Ugg a Wugg song is supposed to be? I appreciate that the producers hired a Native American consultant for this to rework the lyrics. Respect for not being racist.

M: The Native American stuff was, like, Pocahontas- level racist? The Disney movie not the historical figure.

T: For someone who doesn’t like to be touched, Peter does a lot of partner dancing.

oh hey alex wong from SYTYCD!

T: I love that the mic picked up everyone’s heavy breathing after that big dance number. Theatre kids – they’re real people too.

M: During the commercial I made my Lost boys some hot cocoa, and I missed a little but came back for the best musical theater lesbian duet since Take Me Or Leave Me.

M: My sister-in-law came in and asked if they’ve been speaking in English accents the whole time and scout’s honor, I could not answer. Not sure if that says more about me or the production – and for the record, I find the production magical as heck.

M: I aimed for Wendy’s bangs in 1997, so I kind of know what I’m talking about, and those puppies require some serious round brush action.

M: Marnie has some nice vibrato! If only Wendy’s cleavage weren’t looming over her. Dawson casting at its finest.

T: Yeah wait, what’s the timeline for this? How long have they been gone? Why isn’t there a search party out for the Darling kids? Mrs. Darling is gonna be all, “I saw a suspicious man about the size of my fist a couple days ago…”

M:  The song they sing about Hook is totally the same as the Gaston song from Beauty And The Beast.

T: “Who’s the creepiest creep in the world?” honestly never knew how amazing some of these lines were.

M: I don’t know how these child actors can memorize lines, nail blocking, learn choreography and execute stunts, and the kids I’m watching this with can’t even SIT STILL and PAY ATTENTION for one measly three-hour musical event.

M:  My favorite weird Peter Pan is still the Baby Sitters Club Super Special where they performed it at SMS, but you know what? This comes close.

M: This battle sequence has been going on a while but the Lost boys have been able to prep for it ever since John’s scar started tingling. Total Sorcerer’s Stone vibes.

T: It makes sense that the part that makes me tear up is when Hook throws Michael’s teddy bear into the ocean.

T: UPDATE ON THE CROC FROM THE QUEEN THAT IS LAURA BENANTI:

M: The kids’ mom is singing, and I’m almost expecting Sister Suffragette thanks to her costume. The kids come back, which is more than these garbage parents with the dog babysitter deserve. Just as garbage as the McCallisters, if you ask me.

T: On the real tho, if 12 rando boys came into your house and presented you with a single sock and then started singing and dancing would you actually take them in as your own? Mr. Darling’s answer to that is yes.

M: No wonder she raised Wendy to be such a pushover. Also the lost boys are all like 24 years old. So way to go, Mrs. Darling, you now live in an Edwardian frat house.

M: I didn’t know Minnie Driver would be in this! It makes me hate, a little less, the part where Wendy grows up.

T: Is this the story of how it’s possible to grow up to be Minnie Driver?

You’re all grown up!
Yes, it does keep a person rather earthbound.

M: Okay, overall I have to admit it. I think Allison Williams was right. I joked about the production – gently, and because that’s how I interact with the world or whatever. But I couldn’t tear it apart and honestly, I didn’t want to. Several years ago, a friend and I both discovered that we loved live action productions of Peter Pan. We’re probably not the only ones. I love magic. Whatever. No shame.

T:  So in full disclosure, I know a couple people involved with this production, including one of the Lost Boys (Tootles/guy with the top hat) and it is SO WEIRD for me to see him on TV. He has been in a few Broadway shows over the past few years, and it’s amazing to see this kid I used to work with share the stage with Christopher Walken. Because of my personal connection to the production, I had an obvious bias prior to this.

Before the show tonight, he wrote a post on Facebook acknowledging that people (read: staunch Broadway nerds) will probably criticize the show’s every move more so than a regular viewer, but to keep in mind to respect the work that this cast and crew has put in over the past two months. And I took that to heart. Thinking about when I was part of a production like this (not to this scale, obvi), you put so much time and effort into it, and then for a weekend or two, you get to show the world what you’ve been working on. It must suck to have critics hate on you IMMEDIATELY thanks to social media, so in light of my retrospection and respect for my friend, I tried to refrain from saying anything bad about this show.

Good thing is – I don’t have anything bad to say at all. The production value was outstanding, which can be difficult considering live theater isn’t meant to be tape and aired on TV in the first place. I thought Allison Williams was great – I was in the camp of pro-AW upon announcement of her casting, partly because I knew she could sing and partly because I didn’t know the show well enough to judge her. The fact that 90% of the cast had been on Broadway certainly helped bring the show to life, and all in all, it was a heartwarming three-hour show that families can sit and watch together for years to come. I believe.

Welcome to Poehlerland

Today, Amy Poehler’s younger brother, Greg, will make his American debut with his TV show called Welcome to Sweden. That’s right, we’ve been blessed with double the Poehler on NBC. All our dreams are coming true, y’all.

The show is based on Greg’s real life, in which he gave up his job as a lawyer in New York City to move to Sweden with his wife in her native country. IRL, Greg decided to try the whole comedy thing out like his big sis and started doing stand-up in Sweden. He eventually put his comedic skills to paper (or Final Draft, I suppose) and wrote the script for the show. Not knowing much about screenwriting itself (he legit Googled how to write a script), he sent the pilot to Amy with the intention of asking her if he used the right font. Instead, Queen Amy decided to produce the show. It’s already a massive hit in Sweden and has already been picked up for season two!

On the series, Greg plays Bruce who quits his job as an accountant to celebrities in NYC (with clients such as “Amy Poehler”, who is an exaggerated version of the real Amy Poehler) to move to Sweden to be with his girlfriend. The show centers on Bruce’s struggle to start from scratch in a brand new country, including learning the language, getting acquainted with the culture, and making sure that his relationship with his girlfriend was worth the move to a new continent.

I sneakily watched the pilot earlier this week and I’m not just saying this because we’re kind of obsessed with Amy, but the show is good. Like, real good. It’s funny, the writing is great, the acting are superb, but most of all, it has heart. Like sitcoms such as Modern Family, The Office and even Parks and Recreation, the show balances an equal level of high quality comedy with the ability to touch you at the core, possibly even making you shedd a tear or two. In fact, it’s so good that NBC could’ve easily put this in their primetime schedule for the upcoming season, but (for once) made a brilliant move by debuting it in the summer, when there are hardly any new scripted shows. And for people like me, who still yearn for regular TV programming even in the summer/vacation months, it’s a welcome addition to the lineup.

Okay, so if that’s not enough to get you to watch the show, here are a few more reasons why you should give it a try:

Amy Poehler Approved

Alright, I know that Greg’s his own person, and doesn’t deserve to live in Amy’s amazing shadow, but when your sister is Amy Poehler, you kind of have to mention it. One of the reasons why I adore her so much is that she seems genuine and truly cares for those around her. And she doesn’t care for your bullshit. She could have easily told her brother the pilot script was bad or that she didn’t want to be a part of it, but in true Amy fashion, since she strongly believed in the show, she decided to produce (and guest star) in it. Amy Poehler does what she wants to do. But let her tell you why you need to tune in…

This Will Be The Closest You’ll Ever Get To Being a Poehler

Guys, I cannot even with these two. WHAT ARE THEIR FAMILY GATHERINGS BACK IN MASSACHUSETTS LIKE?! How do I attend a Christmas dinner?? We can all go to Dunks and coffee will be on me! I just want to hear Greg tell a joke, their parents talk about the Sox in their Boston accents, and hear Amy cackling in the corner. Their dynamic on screen is just as fantastic as it is off.

Greg Poehler is the Ultimate ‘If They Mated’

g poehlsAs I was watching the pilot, the similarities between Greg Poehler and Greg Kinnear were obvious, but then there was this one scene where Greg P looked and reminded me exactly of Mike Schur. For you folks that aren’t comedy nerds, Mike is the creator/executive producer/writer of Parks and Rec and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and previously served as a writer on shows like SNL and The Office – the latter of which he appeared as Dwight’s weird cousin Mose. While Greg may be a physical doppelganger to both of these men, he also has their combined talents. Greg K. is obviously a super talented actor, and likewise, Greg P. shows off both his comedic and dramatic styles in Welcome to Sweden. And like Mike Schur, Greg has taken on the task of becoming a multi-hyphenate for the series as an actor, writer and executive producer. Obviously as viewers, we only get to see the acting side of it, but boy I’m telling you, he does a great job at balancing all three.

You’ll Have Wanderlust for Sweden

I’m gonna be honest with you – I’ve never *dreamed* about going to Sweden. If someone asked me if I could go anywhere in the world right now, Sweden wouldn’t be at the top of the list (but it wouldn’t be at the bottom either). However, after watching the show, it’s definitely moving up. In the interview above, Amy says Sweden is still enigmatic to most Americans – which couldn’t be more true. We have very limited knowledge of the country (Ikea), and I think Welcome to Sweden will “put it on the map”. The culture in particular seems so intriguing, because they’re so weiiirrd. There are a bunch of culture-y references in the pilot that we probably won’t get but the Swedes probably lapped it all up. Anyone up for a Scandinavian vacay?

Guest Stars Galore

One of the advantages of being Amy Poehler’s brother, I imagine, is having connections. In the first season, Greg recruits Amy’s Parks and Rec co-star/BFF Aubrey Plaza, her former SNL castmate Will Ferrell (whose wife is also Swedish), real Swede Malin Ackerman, KISS rocker Gene Simmons, who, like Amy, all play ridiculous versions of themselves as clients of Bruce. Oh and Patrick Duffy of Dallas and Step by Step fame. Apparently he’s still super popular in Sweden because Dallas was THE biggest show and he was the most impressive “get” out of all the guest stars. Who knew?! And since they really do film in Sweden, Amy says they’re hoping to get “as many Swedish actors as we can on the show.” And that includes all of the Skarsgards including Stellan and his son Alexander.

“Oh, yes. We are heavily stalking them. But they’re staying a little skarsguarded right now.” – Amy Poehler, American hero {x}

Because You Need a New Person to Obsess Over

I imagine I will be seeing so many Welcome to Sweden gifsets on Tumblr after tonight, and particularly of one Mr. Greg Poehler. I would just like to reiterate that he used to be a intellectual property lawyer and majored in Math at Boston College. What I’m trying to say is that he’s not dumb and still really funny. And just like his sister, he doles out great advice, leading me to think that the Poehlers are obviously some kind of robots created by Oprah to create the perfect human beings.

“If this is it, then you should try to enjoy it even more. If you only get one roller-coaster ride, you don’t want to be thinking about the second one when you’re on it.” Greg giving you the real shit {x}

In saying this, I’d like to dedicate this post and all my posts about these siblings moving forward to Bill and Eileen Poehler, for creating two of the most beautiful and smart creatures that walk this earth.

2014 Unofficial Guide to Your New TV Addictions

May is a big month for television. In addition to all the season finales and unfortunate cancellations (TROPHY WIFE UGHHH), networks also reveal the pilots that have been picked up to series for the upcoming season. Every year, there are trailers that make you think ‘Why da faq did they pick this show up’ but then there’s always the ‘I need this show to come on now because watching the 3 minute preview isn’t enough’. To help you weed through the bramble, I’ve compiled a list of shows I think actually have a shot of making it at least one season. Are any of these your early favorites too?

The Comedies

A to Z

Thursdays, 9:30pm • NBC

If you’re a Mad Men fan, you might recognize the lead male as cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs Michael Ginsberg. If you’re a Mindy Project fan, you might remember him as the pretentious guy Mindy dated who adorably played the ukelele and sang a Katy Perry song. And if you’re a How I Met Your Mother fan, you might recognize the lead female as Tracy ‘I’m Not a Plot Device’ McConnell.

I’m going to be honest with you guys and tell you that I have probably watched this trailer at least 8 times already, which is probably 7 times too many. While Ben Feldman and Cristin Milioti aren’t necessarily big actor names like some of the other shows that got picked up for next season, I hope people still decide to watch it, because it looks super cute… and maybe a little HIMYM-esque? Whatevs, I’m into it.

Bad Judge

Thursdays, 9:00pm • NBC

The great Kate Walsh returns to network TV! Addison Montgomery has switched occupations and is now a judge. A ‘Bad Judge’ if you will. I didn’t really expect much before watching this, but I was delightfully surprised when I literally LOLed a couple times. It’s reminiscent of Bad Teacher, both the Cameron Diaz movie and the TV show which was recently cancelled after just a few episodes (side rant: I only saw the pilot, but it was hilarious. Come ON CBS).

Black-ish

Wednesdays, 9:30pm • ABC

Like Bad Judge, I wasn’t really expecting much, but again I was delightfully surprised. I’m just gonna go ahead and say this about Anthony Anderson: he doesn’t have the greatest track record with his own starring shows. But this show is different from his previous ones, and I think Laurence Fishburne has a lot to do with it. His presence makes you take the show seriously. And ABC did a great job at pairing it after Modern Family, because it has that same sort of tone to it. A sitcom with heart. What’s it about, you ask? Family.

The McCarthys

Thursdays, 9:30pm • CBS

I might be a little biased because I used to live in Boston, but I’m always partial to shows that are set in that great city. Admittedly, not all of those shows are good, but this one has potential. The show is centers on a typical Boston family and the gay son who never really fit in. It’s important to note that Joey McIntyre, Boston’s pride and joy, is also in this show, so that gives you a reason to watch, if you’re into like, NKOTB or the 80s. Also worth noting that this show is super CBS. It’s multicam, shot in front of a live audience, includes corny jokes that your mom laughs at because she also watches Two and a Half Men still, type show.

Tribeca

This is a cop show starring Rashida Jones and created and executive produced by Steve Carell, his wife Nancy, and Conan O’Brien. That is all.

Honorable Mentions

Marry Me: Starring Casey Wilson & Ken Marino, created by a producer of Happy Endings (also Casey’s fiance IRL)

I really want this show to do well, because, RIP Happy Endings, but mehhh I hope the pilot is better than the trailer.

Mulaney : Starring John Mulaney, Martin Short, Nasim Pedrad

This show has taken a really long time to get off the ground, but SNL writer alum John Mulaney is really funny and I’m glad his show is finally getting air time. Except I also really don’t want it to be Seinfeld-esque.

Selfie: Starring John Cho & Karen Gillan

Horrible name and theme for an actually funny trailer. It’s a modern day My Fair Lady, except all the social media references make it outdated already. It’ll be interesting to see if viewers take to it or not.

Midseason Shows

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt {Ellie Kemper, produced by Tina Fey}, Mission Control {Krysten Ritter, produced by Will Ferrell}, Mr. Robinson {The Office’s Craig Robinson},  The Last Man on Earth{Will Forte}, Fresh Off the Boat {Asians}

The Dramas

How to Get Away with Murder

Thursdays, 10:00pm • ABC

Hey, Shondaland loyalists – this show is for you. To everyone else waiting outside the park, get in line, because Shonda Rhimes is LIT’RALLY taking over Thursday nights, and you need to be there or else be left out of watercooler (?) discussions on Friday. Viola Davis stars in this new drama that is on top of my list for new series this fall. And if you’re wondering how you know the tall, black kid – it’s because he played Dean Thomas in the Harry Potter movies. DEAN FRIGGIN THOMAS.

Gracepoint

Thursdays, 9:00pm • Fox

I’m not a Doctor Who fan, but I imagine that you Whovians are probably excited that David Tennant is going to be on American TV. Gracepoint is a crime drama based on U.K.’s Broadchurch, which David also starred in. In fact Broadchurch just won 3 TV BAFTAs including Best Drama on Sunday, which is basically the Emmys of the U.K. Another reason to get excited for this is that Anna Gunn, everyone’s favorite drug lord accomplice is back and on the other side of the coin as a detective, as they try to solve the murder of a young boy. Hopefully this turns out better than The Killing.

Gotham

Mondays, 8:00pm • Fox

The superhero world expands yet again, this time with the focus on Batman’s Gotham City, and more importantly on Comissioner Gordon played by Ryan Atwood Ben McKenzie.

Constantine

Fridays, 10:00pm • NBC

I’m not a big comic book person, but I just think this show’s going to do really well because everyone else seems to be into comic book stuff these days. Also I couldn’t get through the whole trailer because I got grossed out.

State of Affairs

Mondays, 10:00pm • NBC

The ever-polarizing Katherine Heigl is back on TV as a CIA analyst trying to find out who killed her fiance. Her fiance whose mom is the President of the United States of America. And also Alfre Woodard.

Honorable Mentions

Stalker: Maggie Q and Dylan McDermott

This thriller is created by Kevin Williamson, so obviously it’s going to be creepy. Maybe creepy enough to become a hit.

Midseason Shows

Backstrom {Rainn Wilson}, Agent Carter {Another Marvel Universe hit}, Wayward Pines {Twin Peaks like with a lot of Oscar-nominated actors}, Battle Creek {Vince Gilligan proves that he’s a genius and it wasn’t just luck with Breaking BAd} Empire {Terrance Howard and Taraji P. Henson, produced by Lee Daniels, written by Gilmore Girls’ Doyle McMaster/Danny Strong about a hip hop empire}, Galavant (A medevil musical. No really. Just watch the trailer}

 

Show You Should Be Watching If You Aren’t Already: About A Boy

Well, we’ve reached the halfway point in the TV season, and it’s when networks usually introduce new shows to replace the sucky ones they cancelled. One of the standout shows from this bunch of mid-season replacements is NBC’s About a Boy.

The show premiered after the Olympics, which is a tactic that NBC has devised before – they did it with Go On last year, which unfortunately was cancelled after one season. To prevent About a Boy receiving the same fate, how about we all give this show a try and keep it on the air for just a little longer.

Storyline

“Successful songwriter and bachelor Will Freeman lives a carefree life as the “ultimate man-child”. His perfect world is turned upside down when single mom Fiona and her 11-year-old son Marcus move in next door.” It’s also worth noting that if this title sounds familiar, it’s because it was based on the 2002 movie with Hugh Grant, which was based on the 1998 novel by Nick Hornby.

Reasons Why You Should Watch

Jason Katims

Damnit Katims, you did it again. Producer/Writer/Director extraordinaire, Jason has created some of the best (and also some of my favorite) shows over the past few years, including Friday Night Lights and Parenthood. Jason has a way of creating characters you care deeply about, scenarios that could actually happen in real-life, moments of hilarity and of course moments of non-stop crying. That’s what makes each of his shows so special there’s a quality that you can feel from the pilot – it has heart. That’s surprisingly hard to come by in television these days, but thanks to Katims, I can count on his shows to make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside while still wiping away tears from my face. About a Boy is no different. Will and Marcus form a quick bond throughout the 22 minute pilot, but you can tell that they’re changing each others’ lives in such a short amount of time already. Whether you’re an 11 year old kid who’s new in town or a loser of a guy in his 30s, the show seeks to prove that your life can change when you least expect it, when you don’t think you want it to and in the unlikeliest of places – but you wouldn’t want it any other way.

The Boy

Benjamin Stockham plays young Marcus, a delightful young boy who, along with his mom played by Minnie Driver, move to San Francisco right next door to Will. Minnie’s a vegan hippie sort and Will, a meat-eater, is just trying to fit in at school. But le tme tell you, this kid’s acting and comedic timing is off the chain. He’s only 13 years old, but could easily be 40 if you told me he was. He’s not one of those annoying kids you see on TV (or in real life), he’s someone you want to cheer for and possibly hug whenever you get a chance. I also had to look up his past credits and guess what – he was in the gone-too-soon comedy, 1600 Penn alongside Josh Gag, Bill Pullman and Jenna Elfman. And he was great it that too, but 10 times better in this.

Potential guest stars and crossovers

Parenthood is where this whole crossover thing took it to the next level. Katims was all, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it and hire the same actors from my Emmy award-winning show to be on my new show.’ So you know, he made his calls and throughout the course of all the five seasons, FNL stars like Minka Kelly, Michael B. Jordan, Matt Lauria, Jurnee Smollett and Derek Phillips have all been on the show (not to mention Jesse Plemmons’ return as Landry on this FNL/Parenthood crossover that blew my mind). That being said, it’s inevitable to have FNL and/or Parenthood folks on About a Boy. Case in point: it has already been announced that Adrienne Palicki (good old Tyra on FNL) will have an arc on the show as one of Will’s love interests. Plus, David Walton (Will) has already been in a recent episode of Parenthood as one of Crosby’s (Dax Shepard) poker buddies. It helps that both shows take place in the bay area, because Crosby’s going to be in an ep of About a Boy too. TV nerds celebrate the crossover magic!

No book, No movie, no problem

As I previously mentioned, About a Boy is based on a book which was based on a movie. Now if anyone’s up for the task of adapting something that’s already been adapted before, it’s Jason Katims. He did it with both FNL and Parenthood, but managed to keep the story going on season after season. In the pilot of About a Boy, fans familiar with the book and movie will find it similar to what they already know about the story. Will and Fiona (Minnie Driver) immediately hate each other, he has a lot of women coming in and out of his boudoir, and there’s even a big talent show featuring Marcus at the end. But that’s it. You don’t need to have seen the movie or read the book in order to enjoy the show. I’ve only seen the movie and I saw it around the time it first came out, so I clearly have no recollection of anything that happened, besides the fact that Hugh Grant befriended Nicholas Hoult aka Mr. Jennifer Lawrence. So no need to fret if you’re unfamiliar. You’ll fall in love with these characters and will be genuinely interested in their lives as the series goes on, and you’ll completely forget it was based on something else in the first place.

About a Boy is on NBC, Tuesdays @ 9:00pm

Watch the pilot here!

Goodbye, Sochi: Olympics GIF Wrap Up

Well folks, the 2014 Olympics have come and gone incredibly fast, just like Shaun White’s hopes of making history and winning another medal (too soon?). We’ve seen the highest of highs, the lowest of lows. The underdog stories and the stories of world champs falling from grace.

So how could we possibly sum up everything that’s happened in two weeks? With GIFs of course! Here are some of the best moments from the Sochi Winter Olympics in animated form. Hopefully this will tide all of us over until the Summer Games in Rio in 2016…

Remember the opening ceremony? I bet whoever was in charge of these olympic rings will never forget this for the rest of his/her life.

Poor Bob Costas. The man who helms the Olympics for NBC was down with pinkeye. Well, make that pinkeyes because it spread from one to the other and he had to sit out on like three nights of primetime coverage. But he eventually got better, and we got this gif out of it.

I was watching this live, when a man climbed a tree to meet U.S. Men’s Alpine head coach Sash Rearick, who was hanging out in some branches Katniss style to get a better view of the course. And an NBC correspondent had to get a interview, because, ratings.

There were 14 new programs introduced this year, including this one, slopestyle snowboarding. This is American Jamie Anderson who won us a gold medal and taught us about Tinder in Olympic village (but hardcore Olympic fans already know that the village is a hookup hotspot)

And one of the first viral gifs out of this year’s Olympics is courtesy of U.S. luger Kate Hansen. She was spotted rockin out with her headphones in right before she sped down the icy ramp.

When asked who she was listening to, clearly, it was none other than Queen Beyonce.

Another American who went viral – figure skater Ashley Wagner. Clearly disappointed with her low score, she forgot that cameras were on her and also forgot that the internet thrives on reactions like this.

This is probs my favorite. This is a real pic from American bobsledder Johnny Quinn, who got locked in his Sochi hotel bathroom. To escape, he used his bobsled (and NFL training) to break through the door like the Kool-Aid man. The best part – he got stuck in an elevator a few days later.

And then there was Russia’s Yulia Lipnitskaya. A 15 year old who stunned everyone in the free skate during the team competition, helping them earn a gold medal, and made her the youngest Russian winter olympics gold medal winner. But really, that spin tho.

The biathlon/any cross country skiing seemed to be the absolute worst sport this year. People were literally collapsing at the finish line. Hilarious but, you know, not.

The weather in Sochi was a big problem this year. One day it would be foggy and cold, the next 60 degrees. Literally warmer than on the east coast and its polar vortex. This didn’t help the snow conditions, and athletes were having problems with the icy/hard/slush terrain. But the Russians did their best to keep up appearances.

The halfpipe wasn’t kind to Shaun White either. He was hoping for his third gold medal in a row, but to no avail. wah wah.

This is Gus Kenworthy, silver medal winner in slopestyle skiing. But who cares about the medal. He made friends with the stray puppies who the Russians were allegedly killing off, but Gus did this and wanted to take them back home to the U.S. with him. I mean can you even.

Not to mention when Gus won his medal, he was part of a U.S. podium sweep with Joss Christensen (gold) and Nick Goepper (bronze).

This is American slopestyle snowboarder Sage Kotsenberg. He is doing a trick called the ‘Holy Crail’, which is obviously very difficult, but has a stupid name. He also credited ‘mad snacks’ and Fight Club for helping him focus before winning the gold. Clearly there’s no doubt he’s a snowboarder.

The Dutch have always dominated speed skating, but more so this year. 23 speedskating medals. 8 gold. They’ve won at least one medal in every single speedskating category. Basically it was a lot of orange on the podium in the speed skating center.

There was a rare tie for gold in women’s downhill skiiing, between Slovenia’s Tina Maze and Switzerland’s Dominique Gisin. But more importantly, Tina Maze is a pop star, model and all around A-lister back home in Slovenia.

And then there was the couples’ ice skating. Russians Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov brought the house down when they won gold. And also cast Angela Kinsey as Tatiana in her (eventual) made for TV movie.

I just included this U.S. skating pair of Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir (who obviously didn’t medal) because Simon and I apparently went to the same college. Go Lions!

This Swedish skiier, Henrik Harlaut, actually has dreads and XXXXL pants, and it’s really not surprising that he fell. Because COME ON.

Skeleton is probably the most badass sport, and Canada’s Sarah Reid has the best helmet to go down the ice giant ice slide.

Oh Evgeni Plushenko. The star men’s skater for Russia for… forever. He’s one of the country’s most beloved athletes, and won the gold in 2006. And even though he skating perfectly for the team competition and helped Russia earn the gold, by the time it got to his solo comp, his recurring back problem flared up and he decided to quit.

See- his back? He’s had surgery before, okay? We needed to see it to believe it. Anyways, he not only withdrew from the Olympics, but he announced it would be his last competition ever and officially retired.

Ah Jeremy Abbott. He fell, hit the boards, and stayed on the ice for a good 15 seconds. BUT THEN he got his ass back up and finished the routine. That’s the Olympic spirit, folks.

Meet rising star, American ice skater Jason Brown. Also the gayest of gays since Johnny Weir, and it’s a welcome addition. Also, this quote during the his program from one of the commentators: “He doesn’t have a quad turn, but he does have a ponytail that has its own Twitter account.”

And… this is Spain’s Javier Fernandez. Do with it what you will.

Women’s snowboardcross was an awesome competition to watch, as it was anyone’s game. In this GIF, the woman ahead is American Lindsey Jacobellis, who is a silver medalist from ’06, and favored to win again in Sochi after a failed attempt in Vancouver. Except she was so ahead in this race when one little slip up made her fall and her dreams to get another medal were dashed yet again.

If you’re wondering how Cool Runnings 2014 did (2-man bobsled of Winston Watts and Marvin Dixon), the Jamaicans literally placed last. Not a good trip for these guys.

But at least they got this catchy tune out of it.

Bode Gate: 2K14. Alpine Skiier Bode Miller, another veteran of the games, won a bronze medal in what is probably his last Olympics. Post his winning race, he spoke with a NBC correspondent about what the moment ment to him – especially since he dedicated it to his younger brother who died months before. He broke down and the reporter got a lot of heat for it, but Bode defended her. All’s good, he has his bronze medal, and NBC got its ratings scandal.

Belarus’s Anton Kushnir won the gold with this, and I’m just impressed anyone can physically fly that high and land and not die.

Guys, my new obsession is ice dancing. IDK why I never really paid attention to it before, maybe it was the whole Canada/USA rivalry this year, but it is fantastic. Speaking as a fan of dancing/former dancer, this is right up my alley. I introduce you to the ‘Shib Sibs’ aka Maia and Alex Shibutani, siblings who ice dance together, particularly to a Michael Jackson in this gif.

I think I’m starting to be obsessed with Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir. Like almost shipping them. Ugh, but they’re just so damn good. LOOK AT THESE TWIZZLES!

AND THE LIFTS!

And the Canadian flag that turned out to be a poncho! Virtue and Moir weren’t able to get their second gold medal in a row and were bumped to silver, But hey, they have each other.

Of course, the folks who won were American darlings/Disney characters Meryl Davis and Charlie White.

And then Mary Carillo’s documentary about Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan’s ’94 debacle aired before the closing ceremony on Sunday, and Tonya Harding looks just as guilty as she did 20 years ago. Like I said on Twitter, “2014 Tonya Harding is like the mini-van mom in suburban detroit who got caught shoplifting at her local k-mart.”

Remember that fog and bad weather I was talking about before? Yeah, this was it. Right before this Olympian was about to ski down a mountain.

IDK if the fog effected Austria’s Kathrin Zettel, but either way, she ran into a pole and the flag covered her face. Then it moved down to her waist and was on her person for like 5 more slaloms. Oops.

So you know what’s even more impressive than being an Olympic athlete? Being an Olympic athlete in both the summer and the winter games. Remember Lolo Jones from track and field/hurdles? Yeah, she’s become a bobsledder. But didn’t win a medal here either.

Curling, guys. Curling. Still don’t get it, but good to know suburban high school history teachers can get in on the action.

NBC, always explaining sports to the viewers in layman’s terms, which I appreciate. Basically gold medalist Ted Ligety has super impressive almost unhuman-like angles when he skis down a mountain, and that’s why he deserves all the awards.

I have no idea what’s going on here, but this is amazing.

Andreas Nodl of Austria slammed Norway’s Jonas Holos into the boards and legit shattered a pane of glass. This is why I can’t with hockey.

Can you say sob fest?? This heart on the half pipe was in honor of women’s freestyle skiier Canadian Sarah Burke, who died in 2012 due to injuries sustained during practice. She was considered a pioneer in the sport and helped bring freestyle skiing to the winter olympics. Her ashes were spread on the halfpipe in Sochi. {x}

Talk about a photo finish – the men’s ski-cross QUARTERFINALS (aka not even the big medal run) included a huge crash at the end between Russia’s Egor Korotkov, Sweden’s Victor Norberg and Finland’s Jouni Pellinen. As you can see, there is one clear frontrunner, Switzerland’s Armin Niederer, but second place (the only other person advancing to the next round) was a three way tie. The Russian eked out from the other two – because he flailed his arm across the finish line first.

And the so-called ‘crown-jewel- of the winter olympics, women’s figure skating came to a head. That 15-year-old Russian spin girl did the impossible – she fell. Oops. No medal for her.

Ashley Wagner, still not pleased with her results, but at least she’s more aware of her surroundings this time.

And the final standings: she came in sixth. “Not bad!”

Gracie Gold, America’s hope for, well, gold, didn’t exactly live up to her namesake. Fourth would have to do.

‘Queen’ Yuna Kim, the reigning champ from Korea, as beautiful as she skated, she just couldn’t hold on to her title. But really, she is so good, it’s upsetting.

And I think Katy Perry said it best, but 17-year-old Russian skater Adelina Sotnikova came in like a Dark Horse. Pre-Yulia dominating during the team competition, Adelina was an expected frontrunner. But Yulia took the spotlight and all the pressure that goes with winning a medal for your country IN the host country, and Adelina was like don’t forget about me bitches. This girl took home the gold and Yulia is busy listening to One Direction and already focused on South Korea 2018.

Can we talk about these two? Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir served as figure skating correspondents (obvs), but their outfits and clear BFF-ness needs to be put on a reality show or something. Or he can just have her on his show all the time.

This is the worst GIF, but after my boy and the ‘next-Apolo Anton Ohno’ failed to win anything on his own, he finally got a silver medal in the relay with the other boys in short track. Gold in 2018, my friend.

Closing Ceremony: In which Russia proved they actually have a sense of humor. Well fucking played.

So here’s the thing. This bear was one of the Olympic mascots – but in America, we didn’t know that because they never introduced them on NBC. So when this dude showed up at the closing ceremony, I bet a lot of people were confused and concerned they had taken drugs at some point during the night. Anyways, he’s been nicknamed “Nightmare Bear” because he’s so GD scary and looks stoned all the time. But here, he’s just expressing what a lot of us Olympics devotees are feeling right now – withdrawal that the games are actually over.

And there you have it folks. 17 days of elite competition in Sochi are now over. Until Rio in 2016, Vlad Poots thank you for your attention and time. As the Russians say, “Spasibo!”

Go Human Beings! A Tribute to the (Real) Return of Community

Last week, the cult comedy returned for a fifth season and let me just say for the record – it’s already better than 90% of the episodes from last season.

Community -- Season 5

For those who aren’t fans/not familiar with the situation at hand, Community has always been in underdog status with NBC. It has always been in danger of being cancelled, not to mention its time slot was constantly moved around as well as its premiere date. Fans rallied to save the show, repeating the mantra ‘Six Seasons and a Movie’ in reference to something Abed says in the show.

At the end of season 3, creator/executive producer/mastermind Dan Harmon left the show, leaving his baby in the hands of two other guys who were decent but not as genius as Dan Harmon. Thus, season 4 was widely panned by critics and fans alike (I will say there were at least 3 good episodes. Out of 13).

Luckily for us, Dan Harmon is BACK for the fifth season and we can have renewed hope in this show once again. If you’re one of those folks who stopped watching after season three or mid-season 4, here are some reasons you need to get your ass back to Greendale.

1) Dan Harmon

Except Chevy wouldn’t be thinking this…

Like I mentioned, Dan Harmon is back. His crazy yet talented mind is back. He left the show in the first place because of something to do with NBC and hating Chevy Chase, so now that Chevy is gone and I guess he’s mended his ties with the network, he’s agreed to come back. Not to mention Joel McHale championed for him to come back.

Dan has a certain style of writing, a creative way of telling stories that is so unique that it’s hard to recreate. And that’s clearly been proven. A show as meta and pop culture-refrencey (scientific term) as Community can only be done right by him.

2) Guest Stars

Basically the entire cast of Breaking Bad is going to be on the show, so just watch it. Okay, maybe not the entire cast. Just Jonathan Banks (Mike) who has essentially replaced Chevy Chase and Vince Gilligan (!). Speaking of creators of great TV shows, Mitch Hurwitz, the guy behind Arrested Development will be on, as well as Tobias Funke David Cross. Then there’s also Nathan Fillion, Ben Folds, and Chris Elliot, but hey, who’s keeping track?

3) Jeff Winger as a Teacher

That’s right, everyone’s favorite lawyer-turned-community college student finally graduated and has no where else to go but backwards. But how will the rest of the study group react to this turn of events? Will it just be a shitshow?

4)  Parodies/Musical Segments/Pop Culture-Refrencey Moments

These are the show’s bread and butter. With Dan at the helm, he was able to pull off genre spoofs like Spaghetti Westerns, a Law & Order episode, even a Ken Burns type documentary about Pillow Vs. Blanket forts. Not to mention some of my fave concept episodes which involve paintball, Dungeons and Dragons and probably the greatest ep to date – Remedial Chaos Theory which explores a night with the gang in seven alternate timelines. And it looks like we’re back on track with this S5 trailer spoof of Mad Men, which is known for its unrevealing extremely vague promos.

5) Troy’s departure

Ok, I’m not so much as looking forward to this as interested to see how he will leave and if Abed can stay alive for the rest of the series. Troy, played by my boo Donald Glover, is only in 5 of the 13 episodes this season because he’s got better things to do like rap and produce shows because he’s super talented. But will his BFFL Abed be able to go on without him? Will they finally be forced to grow up? Will he take off his shirt one last time? I don’t think I’ll be able to handle this.

‘The Sound of Music Live!’ Live Blog

I’m having a real Jessie Spano moment right now: I’m so excited, but I’m also so scared. Tonight, Carrie Underwood will be starring as Maria in  The Sound of Music Live!, and like life itself, it has the potential to be either so wonderful or so very, very awful.

So, as we do with all televised events that hold the potential for disaster, we’ll be posting a Cookies + Sangria live blog! Come back tonight at 8:00 EST – it’ll be just like watching The Sound of Music with your friend who really loves cheesy musicals but also can’t help but make fun of things. We’ll see you then!

A Few Ground Rules:

  • With our current WordPress setup, we can’t have our comments show up in real time, so we will be periodically updating the page — probably during commercial breaks. Please refresh the page to see new comments!
  • We really like musicals, so if you do, too, you’re in a safe place. And if you don’t … well, let me tell you a little story. When I was a kid, and the Bills were in the Super Bowl (you can stop laughing… I’ll wait…) a neighbor brought his friend to our house – a friend who was rooting for the Dallas Cowboys. It wasn’t pretty. The whole thing culminated in my dad standing up and shouting “You’re in MY HOUSE and when you’re in MY HOUSE you do things MY WAY!” So, just be advised that you’re in our (blog) house, and it’s a house that likes a good Rodgers & Hammerstein. Also, that I come from a line of people who throw adult temper tantrums, apparently.
  • You can sing along! We can’t hear you, anyway. But extra points if you say the phrase “sound of music” in the style of Chandler Bing:

0:02 AUDRA. When we were discussing this on email, Traci mentioned how nervous she was that Carrie Underwood would slip up (because we love Carrie Underwood). Basically, we want Audra to take all of the parts – just, really Orphan Black it. In the alternative, Tatiana Maslany’s probably up to the task.

0:03 While we do looove musicals, listening to a bunch of nuns sing church songs wasn’t that (read: any) fun back in Catholic school, and it isn’t fun now. Let’s solve that problem like Maria already.

0:04 WOW. Anyone else really thrown off by Carrie Underwood singing in a musical theater voice? She doesn’t sound bad, it’s just kind of throaty. I just hope throaty doesn’t turn … Kermit-y. Hate when that happens.

0:06 Is Maria a postulate or a French maid? Because with this costume, I’m not so sure…

0:08: All of these “problems” with Maria would just be “adorkable” qualities in modern sitcoms. Manic Pixie Dream Postulate?

0:08: T: “Maria, Maria RRRrrrainer” oh my GOD, could you BE any more from Oklahoma?

0:09 Just so we’re clear, all of these nuns are straight-up describing girl crushes on Maria. It’s Carrie Underwood, so I understand, but I guess it just goes to show that some of those nun rumors were true?

0:11 Nope, the phrase “on my knees all night” never doesn’t sound dirty.

Also, Underwood’s stilted musical theater dialogue delivery reminds me of every bad musical I was ever in. And also kind of that Vanessa Bayer character:

The “Star of Tomorrow”? Anyone?

0:13 Carrie’s kind of bringing it with Favorite Things, though. But just when the blocking starts to feel really high school musical-y, Audra’s here to save the day.

0:18 Sorry for the pause but there was a lot of ACTING going on there. When I was a kid, and really into acting, I remember going to my sister’s high school plays and wondering why everyone said their LINES like THIS! Then I learned that they mostly couldn’t act. That’s what this production is sounding like so far.

However — this part of the movie was always really boring to me, too. I have high hopes and I bet Underwood will have great chemistry with the kids and with Stephen Moyer’s cheekbones.

Commercial Break: If you were wondering, here is Carrie Underwood as Maria von Trapp:

And HERE is Swiss Miss, of cocoa packaging fame:

It’s just not the same without Julie Andrews’ Dorothy Hammill haircut.

0:28 Let’s hear it for this soundstage! Or whatever they’re filming this on. I’m serious. It’s great now that they’re indoors. Those mountains and trees were a little depressing. It looked like that one Full House episode when they take a donkey up a mountain.

0:29 There were so many pauses in dialog that I thought someone had forgotten a line.

0:31 Freidrich is kind of adorable? The older girls are coiffed like those dead Romanov princesses:

Once upon a December…

0:35 This has always bothered me about Do-Re-Mi. What sort of dumb-dumb would think teaching a kid how to sing with nonsense syllables is really the best way? Brigitta knows what I’m talkin’ about.

0:37 I don’t care what that one bratty girl says, I think the shirtdress is really working for Underwood.

0:37 T: Carrie needs to practice running while singing more. Breath control is real, y’all.

0:38 Whoever was in charge of the outdoor backdrop clearly blew up the image that’s your great-aunt’s screensaver on her PC. Props to the lighting person, though. Maybe we should get him/her out there to do some acting.

0:39 I cannot with this cheery happy family they have in this ad. We’ve already talked about how the Duggars and Quiver-fillers are secretly creepy, remember.

0:43 Sometimes weird things that are just… not right make me want to throw up. I know it sounds odd, but for instance, there’s this one crosswalk where I get off of my bus, and pressing the button does NOTHING to make the light turn faster. There’s this one guy who presses it constantly, for minutes on end, til it turns. It makes me want to vomit. It’s like he’s trying so hard but is doing a terrible job.

Anyway. That’s how I feel about this outdoor set.

0:45 The way I get through Sixteen Going On Seventeen is pretending that the entire song is totally tongue-in-cheek from both characters’ perspectives.

0:46 Where the gazebo at though?

0:48 A teenaged boy wearing short-pants/hosen in a musical is only hot in Spring Awakening

0:49 DO IT ON THE HILL RIGHT THERE ON THE HILL

0:50 No just kidding nobody’s doing anything on the hill because (a) this isn’t Spring Awakening and (b) Liesl just sang an entire song disavowing her sexual agency

0:51 Why is Maria wearing Felicity Merriman’s nightclothes?

0:54 I think they’re about to launch into My Favorite Things and will somebody please explain me why that’s a Christmas song now? Is it because they say presents that ONE TIME? Because I also get presents at birthdays and graduations and stuff but nobody sings me My Favorite Things then.

0:56 Nope. Lonely Goatherd. Underwood is the least wooden I’ve seen her so far! She actually seems really natural here.

0:57 Ahh the little girl’s yodel-voice is the cutest! Gretl? Brigitta? Tiny, looks like Kirsten Larson? Not sorry for the American Girls Collection references.

Commercial Break: I should mention that Traci might be popping in, but she isn’t here tonight because, well first of all it’s 6pm where she is and she’s working, but also she’s seeing Jimmy Fallon tonight because she lives in LA where that can happen. I live in Rochester, where sometimes your car doesn’t start because it’s cold.

1:04 Stephen Moyer why do you always look like you have to poop really badly?

1:06 Anyone else fill in “damn hell ass kings!” anytime somebody says the phrase “live like a king?”

1:07 We’ve talked about bitchy resting face and how sometimes that is just how your face is, and I think that maybe is the thing with Moyer? See?

1:09 Millionaires with dreams make the WORST musical characters. Yeah, I see you, Daddy Warbucks.

1:13 Guys if I tried to wear a curtain dress I’d be wearing naked because I’m too broke for curtains right now.

1:15 Oh, Frau Schrader. You look like a straight-up fraulein with that sassy hair do.

1:16 I FIGURED IT OUT. Moyer is doing Joey Tribbiani’s patented “Smell the fart acting.”

1:24 See, I usually think they just do dance breaks like this in musical theatre when they’re changing the sets or an actor has a costume change. I don’t know why they’re doing it now.

1:26 There are so many whimsical braided hairdos in this movie that I feel like it was filmed inside of a hipster girl’s tumblr.

1:28 Do you think Maria’s friends are ever all “girl, do you have to wear a dirndl EVERY DAMN DAY!”?

1:31 Maria’s mad that she’s getting moved off of the kids’ table? Kids’ table is the best. I get it.

1:32 The little girl who’s not Brigitta or Gretl (…I’m blanking) is giving off some serious young Dakota Fanning vibes.

1:33 I love So Long, Farewell. If any of you have ever studied abroad, you’ve found two things: (1) that kids speaking foreign languages are ADORABLE, and (2)  you know, yourself, probably.

1:35 Related sidenote: my 3-yr-old nephew says goodnight in a bunch of languages, but he always does guten nacht in an angry German scream-voice. It’s precious.

Commercial Break: Did Jewel get her teeth fixed? And isn’t it so weird when you see people outside of their usual context, like your high school teachers at the mall or Jewel in … not 1997?

1:40 T: Hey guys – Traci here! sorry I’ve been absent – I’m still at work and legit avoiding it right now to do this, so I mean, I’m a star employee. I don’t watch True Blood, but just knowing that he’s a vampire and now playing captain von Trapp is disturbing. wait, he’s a vampire right?(M: Clearly neither of us watches True Blood. Also I’ll add a T before Traci’s posts so you guys can like… picture this, or whatever)

1: 43  T: Fun Fact: I’ve seen Carrie in concert 4 times in concert and i cry every time. EVERY TIME. watching her sing Sound of Music is no different. She’s just that good, folks. She’s just that good.

Fun Fact #2: I played an Asian Sister Margaretta in my church’s production of SoM in like 2001 (honestly can’t remember what year it was). Playing an Asian Sister Margaretta is surprisingly the same as playing White Sister Margaretta. I imagine Audra had this same thought.

1:44 Oh Maria, to ask for the Captain’s heart would be wrong but you can totally come on to Liesl? Yeah, I saw. We all saw.

1:47 It’s like Audra’s face is acting double-time to make up for all of the other non-acting in this production

1:48 T: Also, it’s worth nothing that apparently NBC execs decide to cast former actors from their cancelled shows in live TV musicals. RIP Go On.

Commercial Break: T:

Christian Borle was totally channeling Tim Curry’s Rooster from Annie:

Commercial Break throwback commentary: T: AHH I forgot about how can love survive. It’s finally beginning to feel like a true musical with Christian and Laura. Although that sound you hear is a bunch of SoM movie fans switching the channel to the X Factor because they don’t recognize this song. JK… No one’s switching to X Factor.

1:53 T: Re the first Lonely Goatherd: Umm how comfy does that bed look right now? #things27yearoldsstillatworksaywhilewatchingsoundofmusiclive

1:56 So, I just IMDB’d the kids, and one of them is named Peyton Ella. That’s like, clearly a made-up name, right? It sounds like my/every professional adult’s name on Facebook, because you don’t want your boss to find you. Peyton Ella, you can use your last name. Your future bosses probably aren’t watching.

1:57  T: Per the SoM behind the scenes special I watched by accident last week, the girl who plays Liesl is a junior in college studying like art and some foreign language as a minor… Basically not theater. this is how you do it, kids.

M: “Accidentally?” Girl… okay.

1:59 T: I’ve always wondered why these folks have British accents despite the fact they live in Austria. Am I missing something here?

2:00 T: WAIT. Did Carrie just come back (forward?) from the 1960s? Like did she come in from the set of Catch Me if You Can??

M: As reader Christopher just noted, it looks like polyester.

Commercial Break: T: Also, It’s 7:00pm here, which is the time I usually watch #Scandal at work because I’m a freak and like to live tweet and also watch Parenthood at 10pm PST (because I’m insane).. ANYWAYS – I’’m skipping Scandal to watch Carrie’s bad acting/excellent singing. The struggle is real.
M: I KNOW. Shit’s getting real this week. AND I’m manning Twitter. I’m doing this for you, Underwood.

2:06 M: You know, if you lived in a world where you’d never seen Sound of Music, and therefore didn’t just accept it as normal, would it seem really really weird that everyone’s all “La la la, goatherds! Do Re Mi, Curtain Dresses!” AND THEN THE NAZIS COME?!

… and the fine folks behind Sound of Music are just all:

2:10 T: WERK LAURA BENANTI. WERK. She looks perfect!!!

2:11 M: There’s no reason to dislike Frau Schrader EXACTLY, but auf wiedersehen!

2:15 M: Now we’re setting up the mother Abbess and BRIGITTA?

2:16 T: For the record, Something Good is my favorite song from this show. I feel like it’s often overlooked and Carrie does a beautiful job with it. Julie would be proud.

2:16 M: Agreed! It’s so pretty and Carrie sounds great. But why does she look like Alice in Wonderland…? This wig is killing me.

2:17 T: WHOA. WHOA. WAS THERE TONGUE IN THAT KISS?? THIS IS TELEVISION THERE ISN’T SUPPOSED TO BE TONGUE. I’M OFFENDED (unless there wasn’t tongue, in which case, kudos for making it look real and uncomfy)

2:19 M: This wedding dress looks like it was made either in a high school home ec class (or whatever fake-sounding thing they call home ec now), or in a 10-minute challenge on Project Runway where they had to use table cloths.

2:25 M: Oh no… when you hear “1938” and “new flag” within a minute, you know shit’s getting bad. By the way, that Nazi was wearing a red geometric-patterned tie that looked like my dad’s work clothes in the early 90s.

2:28 T: Huh. It’s been a while since I’ve seen a Nazi on live TV. Refreshing? Nah.


2:29 T:
I’m pretty sure Carrie just broke the 4th wall. This isn’t American Idol.

2:31: M: Oh God. “Love isn’t love until you give it away” sounds like a terrible abstinence-only education slogan. Or, like… maybe the opposite of that? Also, the real adventure begins when you belong to your husband? I’m clearly more of a millennial/ feminist/ curmudgeon than Rodgers & Hammerstein could have possibly envisioned in their audience…

I’m shocked too, Li. I’m shocked too.

2:37 M: SING THE NAZIS AWAY. Why didn’t the allied forces ever think of that?

2:38 T: Oh, so the Nazi stadium is where they’ve been hiding the live audience this entire time!!

2:43 M: Eidelweiss is reminding me that I once read this blog where these American parents were living in like Austria or Germany, and they had to petition the government to name their daughter Eidelweiss. So, I mean, I’m sure your daughter will really appreciate how you stuck it to the man so that you could name her Eidelweiss.

2:43 M: How much did NBC spend on this wig that’s making Underwood look like a live-action, adult version of the Sleeping Beauty cartoon?

2:43 M: Silly Nazis. The von Traps are halfway across the Alps by now.  In their… you know… leiderhosen. I hope they brought warm clothes.

2:55 M: Yep, crouching down behind fountains is always the BEST WAY to hide from Nazis.

2:57 M: When I was in second grade, I thought it would be fun to be a nun because they got to live with all of their  friends. Obviously I just wanted to live in a dorm eventually, and then die alone and unmarried. But anyway, the SoM nuns DO make it look kind of fun.

2:58 There are leaves on the trees and it’s snowing. Although… again, Rochester here. My hair freezes if I go outside at the wrong time.

2:59 The most animated I’ve seen everyone is in the rehearsal footage they showed over the credits. The heck?

3:00 Our friend Tori, via Facebook: “I love Carrie Underwood but that girl is just a single threat.”

Well, that’s all folks. Thanks for tuning in! I will say that as much as we snarked on it, I still do love a good musical. And, say what I will about her acting, Carrie Underwood has a great voice. And, I tended to forget that they were doing the WHOLE THING LIVE , which is impressive.

Will it replace the movie? No, never. But as a weeknight novelty watch, I had fun watching – and blogging. Hope you all liked reading along, too!