Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency

Are you a job creator that could use a “diversity hire” to fill-out a government quota but you’re too afraid you’ll end up with a black radical, black panther or reverse racist?

Mitt Romney

“Binders full of black people, I do not have. So, um… Yes.”

Yes.

Are you sick and tired of having to check to see if any minorities are around before telling the latest Obama So Black joke at work? I’m talking to you big guy.

“Here’s one you may not have heard. Obama is so black…” Just say yes, Donald. “Yes.”

Yes.

Do you believe that reverse racism is more than just something white supremacists invented as a way to justify their hatred and hide their political impotence?

“Let me tell you something about the Negro…”

You know what. Don’t answer that last question. Just call…

Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency.

We have the black candidates that wont make you feel insecure about your bigotry.

We have the Negroes for you.

Ben Carson

“This blog post is the worst thing since slavery.”

Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency 

We have the job applicants that will allow you to feel secure about telling racist jokes at the office. Our men have the blackest skin with the most perfect diction. You’d swear they were just normal people by listening to them but trust me they’re all black. You’ll be amazed. And our black women candidates are some of lightest-skinned “sistahs” around. They all self-identify as white women, but don’t you worry. They know which box to check off at tax time and with little to no sass or back talk. In no time at all you’ll be known as An Equal Opportunity Employer.

Amy Holmes

“I’m not black. My father was from Africa. Ah-free-ca. We weren’t slaves.”

The first thing your clients will say when they see your new hire will be “My god! What a credit to his race.” or they’ll ask “She’s only half black isn’t she?” (as if there’s such a thing). And go ahead and tell that aggressively and disgustingly racist joke in front of them. They can take it. They’re just that good.

Allen West

“You’re reading the blog of someone who despises you. I should know. I hate everyone.”

Now here comes the tricky part. After you’ve told your racist joke in front of one of our highly qualified “black” applicants, a few moments will pass (it will seem to everyone in the room as if it’s been long minutes spent in tense silence). Don’t be alarmed. This is done on purpose. The tension build up will make the pay off all the more sweeter as our candidate will laugh at the joke. But not just laugh, he’ll say “Good one.” and “I heard THAT.” and “I can’t wait to tell my wife that one.” (Don’t worry none of our candidates have white wives. That would be wrong)

Clarence Thomas

“I do not respect my wife’s decision to marry a black man… Sorry Honey, I’m under oath.”

All our candidates are skilled in the best fake laughter. You’ll swear he’s pissing his pants while making full eye contact with the “racist joke” teller in the most submissive way possible (without seeming gay of course) and did you know he’ll even give that bigoted individual an extra little smile just to let them know that THIS Negro isn’t one of THOSE.

*Ask about our Black Republicans. Black Yes Men. And Dark-Skinned Right-Wing Pundits who will agree begrudgingly to the most hateful racist rhetoric with a nervous smile. (as seen on Fox News)

Michael Steele

” Now everybody be cool. He’s not calling us Uncle Toms. It’s just the name of the agency.”

Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency

Make sure to ask your new diversity hire about his thoughts on Ferguson or the Confederate Flag and he’ll answer, “Confederate is just another word for friend.” or he’ll joke,  “You mean Sarah Ferguson the Duchess of York?” And it will all seem as non-confrontational and submissive like as if he were calling you “Massah” without the slightest bit of irony. (*because of ongoing litigation our candidates will not and can not refer to you as “Master”, “Massah”, “Suh Boss” or “Bossman” and will in fact call you by your first name as if you were good friends).

Ask them about #BlackLivesMatter or the Black Lives Matter movement and our candidate will smile sheepishly and tell you reassuringly that he thinks ALL lives matter (without throwing up a little in his mouth).

Senator Scott

“I am opposed to this blog post in every way. Unless I’m told to believe otherwise.”

Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency will send you the colored faces that can fill out any staff photo, Human Resources pamphlet or Police Brutality Press Conference Podium.

Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency will fill your color quota without creating the hostile, “dark” and scary workplace of your worst nightmares.

Uncle Tom’s Employment Agency will work with you and your lawyers to bring you the diversity hire of your dreams. Our candidates will always be “one of the good ones.” We guarantee it. (guarantee void after 6 month probationary period)

Condi Rice

“Melvin, I swear, if you call me an Aunt Jemima, I will cut you.”

Uncle Tom’s

Satisfying your employment needs since 1648

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User Comments 1-5 of 209

anonymous Writes: We used your service earlier this year and were quite happy with our “black person.” But after his 6 month probationary period, he became a full-time employee and he changed practically over-night. He put up a photo of Malcolm X in his cubicle where everyone could see it. Last week he wore a Dashiki to work on casual Friday. Is this a bait & switch? He’s talking lawsuit. I can’t be sued again. I just can’t.

wutangfan69 Writes: I had a similar experience to the previous commenter. It was like he changed all of a sudden. The look he gave me when I innocently called him “Mah N****h.” I meant nothing bad. They say it all the time to each other. I can still see his angry eyes. I was afraid to go to work this morning and I’m the owner. You have Ben Carson and Clarence Thomas in your ad. But what you sent me was more like Wesley Snipes.

aynrand4ever Writes: You can’t say you’re sending a non-threatening black yes-man and send a highly intelligent and qualified n-word who’s now competing for MY job. You see that? I’m saying “n-word” now. He’s got me afraid to even type the word n-word. You should be ashamed of yourselves. I will never use your service again.

ngryblkmn38 Writes: 6 years after taking office, your “candidate” is walking around like he owns the place. I think they call it swagger. But I’m not complaining. It’s kind of nice.

dtrumpjrjr Writes: I specifically requested a “mammy” type, light-skinned African-American female to be my personal assistant. But I was not aware that I wouldn’t be able to pat her on the butt every once in a while. They have such nice… She broke my arm in three places. Can I get a refund?

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Spared or Spoiled Film Reviews: Trainwreck

The rules are simple. The good get spared. The bad get spoiled.

Trainwreck (Universal Pictures)

Trainwreck Poster

Directed by Judd Apatow

Written by Amy Schumer

Starring Amy Schumer, Bill HaderBrie LarsonColin QuinnJohn CenaLeBron JamesTilda Swinton & Amar’e Stoudemire

Amy Schumer is hysterical. I’ve loved her from the beginning. I love her TV show. I love her stand-up. I love her. And as it turns out she can act and she can write. Because Trainwreck is amazing. Absolutely amazing. It’s raunchy and dirty and funny and sincere. And here’s a movie that made me cry laughing and made me cry crying and then made me cry laughing again. And I love when that happens. And yes it’s a romance so it has the obligatory schmaltzy-ness that all romances need. But I didn’t mind it because it was so goddamn funny. There are three different sex scenes in Trainwreck, three separate sex scenes, that each almost made me bust a gut. So incredibly funny.

Verdict: SPARED

Trainwreck

“Ooh I think he likes us.” “Me too. I feel a love fest coming on.”

Here’s something you may not know about me. I am a bisexual man (or maybe you already knew that). I mention it here because I was working on a blog piece a while back about Attraction. And I was listing and discussing the many qualities and things I find attractive in men and in women. And I was surprised to find that those things were different for men and for women. I mean there’s a list of things that are generally agreed to be attractive by almost everybody. Intelligence, creativity, confidence, sense of humor… and there are others. And these are all great qualities in both sexes. But I found that if those qualities are taken to extremes. For instance, extremely funny men. I don’t really want to fuck them, I just want to have a beer with them. Extremely funny women, however, I want to fuck them into next week. And the reason I mention this is because Amy Schumer is so funny that I’m in love with her now. She is so attractive to me now.

Amy Schumer

“I’m attractive to you NOW. Do you know how bad that sounds?”

Amy writes and stars in one of the funniest movies I have seen in a long time. Judd Apatow directs and they create real characters in real relationships with family, friends and lovers. But they have fake jobs and fake lives because you know how romance movies are. The apartments are always way too nice and their jobs are way too cool. He’s a sports surgeon and she’s a magazine writer. He hangs out with LeBron James (actually playing one on one with him) and she works for the most insane and hysterically abrasive woman since The Devil Wears Prada (Her boss is played terrifically by Tilda Swinton). But it’s the real-ness of all the relationships that make Trainwreck so damn good.

Amy Schumer and Bill Hader in Trainwreck

“This review is so sappy. It’s making me uncomfortable… like spooning on a first date.”

Trainwreck is the story of a party girl who does not believe in monogamy. And avoids true intimacy. Oh my god, I’ve known so many women like her. It’s so real. Which makes it all the more funny. It’s just something you don’t see in mainstream movies. And never ever done this well. It has a fantastic cast of comedians, actors and athletes doing a great job bringing their characters to life. And her “somewhat” boyfriend, played by John Cena, steals the movie with this cringe-worthy sex scene.

John Cena is so fucking funny

“I’m good in the movie. I’m really good. Tell me I’m good.” “You’re good in the movie.” “I told you I was good.” “Are you done now?” “I’m good”

Everyone’s great but LeBron James. He is awful. His lines are funny. And he doesn’t break character. So I’ll give him that. But I just couldn’t believe him. Everyone else is so good and he sticks out like an awful acting sore thumb in the body of LeBron James.

LeBron James and Bill Hader in Trainwreck

“Hi is this ghosts of Stanislavski and Strasberg? Yes. I’m sitting here with LeBron… Hello?”

I laughed so hard all the way through Trainwreck, from the opening sex scene to the end credits. It is hysterical. The theater was packed for a movie in its second week. A film marred by yet another mass shooting in America (If you google the film’s name it’s the first story that comes up). I already wanted to see the film but I was prepared to wait until it came out on video. But after another attack in a movie theater, I had to go out and support it. I really hope this doesn’t become a thing. Shooting people in the back while they watch a movie in the dark. I need for this to stop. It upsets me. The movie theater is my church, my school. I wrote a short poem about this the last time it happened back in 2012. You can find it here. I wrote something smaller after this one.

Sitting in the dark
My back to the door
My ass to the world
My face in a dream
Enjoying the sounds and images
The lives and love and laughter
Trusting
Trusting
Trusting
That no one behind me
There in the dark
Is having a bad day.

Trainwreck Movie Still

“…and then he said he was in love with me and wrote me a poem. No. I’m being serious.”

I wish the shooter would’ve just watched the damn movie. I think it would have cheered him up. It’s very good. And very funny. Trainwreck is a very funny movie. And Amy… I am so in love with her now… no matter what she says about black guys.

– Mel

James Bond: Spectre Trailer

You guys know how much I love James Bond.

And how much I love the car….

This looks really good.

I’ve really enjoyed Daniel Craig’s run as James Bond.

Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall

I loved them all.

So, I can’t wait for this one.

– Mel

Songs That Define Me: Tool’s Forty Six & 2 (Kid’s Cover)

Hey guys,

A few posts ago I talked about not being able to define myself in words and wanting to use music. So I was going to post Ten Songs That Define Me. But then I thought, why should I limit myself or force myself into picking ten? Plus I wanted to find live versions of the songs or clever videos for the songs to make it interesting. And that’s where I ran into my problem. I didn’t want to just post the songs. But post some cool videos of the songs.

So instead of posting all of my “Songs That Define Me” in one post I’ve decided to make it into a series. If I find a good video I’ll post it and if I can’t find it I’ll record it myself and post me doing the song on acoustic or something. The first song was Mayonaise by Smashing Pumpkins. I posted that in my What’s Good post for early Summer.

But here is a great acoustic version of that song to make it official. Even though the video is flopped (backwards) and Billy cracks up toward the end. This is the best audio-visual example of that song being performed that I can find.

 

But this post is about the second song from my “Songs That Define Me” series. And trust me they won’t all be rock songs. But this song most definitely is. It’s Forty Six & 2 by Tool. And I found this insanely good cover by a group of kids from the O’Keefe Music Foundation. Covering Forty Six & 2 is difficult to begin with (It goes from 4/4 to 7/8, 5/8 & 3/8 overlapping the drummers amazing 7/8) so THIS is outstanding.

Kala Scarpinski

They say the song’s title refers to the next evolution of human DNA (we’re at 44 & 2 chromosomes) but I like to think of it (at least recently and personally) as my age and my time. It is a call to arms. I love this song. Actually this entire album is fantastic. Tool’s album Ænima is in my top ten favorite albums of forever and always. Take it kids…

 

I’m going to put up Tool’s version of their song but honestly I prefer my girl Kala Rose (Kala Scarpinski)’s vocals to Maynard’s (seriously I do).

Kala Rose

I’m also going to add her doing Sober with her current group from this year. (Forty Six & 2 was from 2013). This little girl is gonna be huge if she keeps rocking.

 

Anyway, I can totally see her as a rock star one day. But here is the original version of Forty Six & 2 by Tool… for comparison or just because it kicks ass.

Forty Six & 2

My shadow’s shedding skin.
I’ve been picking scabs again.
I’m down.
Digging through.
My old muscles looking for a clue.
I’ve been crawling on my belly.
Clearing out what could’ve been.
I’ve been wallowing in my own confused and insecure delusions.
For a peace to cross me over.
Or a word to guide me in.
I wanna feel the changes coming down.
I wanna know what I’ve been hiding in my shadow.
Change is coming through my shadow.
My shadow’s shedding skin.
I’ve been picking my scabs again.
I’ve been crawling on my belly.
Clearing out what could’ve been.
I’ve been wallowing in my own CHAOTIC and insecure delusions.
I wanna feel the change consume me.
Feel the outside turning in.
I wanna feel the metamorphosis and cleansing I’ve endured within my shadow.
Change is coming.
Now is my time.
Listen to my muscle memory.
Contemplate what I’ve been clinging to.
Forty-six and two ahead of me.
I choose to live and to grow.
Take and give and to MOVE
Learn and love and to CRY
Kill and die and to be paranoid and to lie
Hate and fear and to Do what it takes to move through.
I choose to live and to lie
Kill and give and to die
Learn and love and to Do what it takes to step through.
See my shadow changing, stretching up and over me.
Softening this old armor.
Hoping I can clear the way by stepping through my shadow,
And coming out the other side.
Step into the shadow.
Forty six and two are just ahead of me.

(Now is my time)

Thanks for listening.

Until we meet again,

– Mel

Photos from Around the Block: Ant-Man Friday

I went to see Ant-Man on Friday. Took some pictures before the movie. Took some pics after the movie. I’ve been up to Lincoln Square a lot and have taken more than a few pictures in that area, so this time I concentrated more on people. I took a lot more photos of people on the street and the reflections of buildings off of other buildings. So, once again I picked the twenty best ones and I’ll post them here. I really like these. Especially the late afternoon reflections and the people.

I'm Ant-Man

I’m Ant-Man

Plus Ant-Man was a good movie. So that usually means, when the movie is good, I get better pictures. Good movies make me happy.

To the pics…

This lady here is checking out the pics on my blog.

This lady here is checking out the pics on my blog. She clicked LIKE and so should you.

The many layers of a New York Subway Station

The many layers of a New York Subway Station

Hat Lady was a good pic because I couldn't see her face and her dog was checking me out.

“Are you checking out my owner’s hat?” Hat Lady was a good pic because I couldn’t see her face and her dog was checking me out.

The Fountain at Lincoln Center in Repose

The Fountain at Lincoln Center in Repose

"Stop in the name of love..."

“Stop in the name of love…”

The  Fountain at Lincoln Center Explodes

The Fountain at Lincoln Center Explodes

Fruit Vendor

Fruit Vendor and an Old Asian Couple

I think I'm going to do a whole book of just the reflections of buildings off of other buildings.

I think I’m going to do a whole book of just the reflections of buildings off of other buildings.

A guy on a ladder

A guy on a ladder

A Bird on a head is worth  three in that bush... nevermind.

A bird on the head is worth three in that bush… never mind.

Box Office (I don't know why I like this picture so much)

Box Office (I don’t know why I like this picture so much. There’s really not much going on)

Ladies...

Ladies… They look cold. It’s 27 degrees out… Give them your jacket.

A building reflection with a refracted rainbow.

A building reflection with a refracted rainbow.

On The Chow... New York style.

On The Chow… Outdoors… New York style.

Gum Balls

Gum Balls in Seven Colors (but just one flavor)

Sometimes you can't see the fountain through the trees.

Sometimes you can’t see the fountain through the trees. (that guy knows what I’m talking about)

Columbus Circle Globe from underneath

Columbus Circle Globe from underneath

Focus Pull

Focus Pull

A reflected building

A reflected building distorted and fractured.

The Plane Above The Building

A Plane, High Above The City, Going North… that’s my ride.

And that’s all the pics I got.

Until next time,

– Mel

Spared or Spoiled Film Reviews: Ant-Man

The rules are simple. The good get spared. The bad get spoiled.

Ant-Man (Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)

Ant-ManPoster

Directed by Peyton Reed

Written by Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish  Based on Ant-Man by Stan LeeLarry Lieber & Jack Kirby

Starring Paul RuddEvangeline LillyCorey StollBobby CannavaleMichael PeñaTip “T.I.” HarrisWood HarrisJudy GreerDavid Dastmalchian & Michael Douglas

This is a good movie. Funny, exciting, very funny, lots of heart, lots of superhero action. I really enjoyed Ant-Man a lot. It plays more like a heart-strings pulling comedy than a superhero action film. But if you go into it knowing that you’re seeing a comedy-adventure and not an action-adventure, you won’t be disappointed. But I think it needed just a little more salt because it was a bit too bland for me. But still I liked it. I liked it a lot.

Verdict: SPARED

For every bad thing Mel says about the movie I'm gonna kick you ass.

“For every bad thing Mel says about Ant-Man, I’m gonna kick you ass.” “Wait… what?”

I had a few complaints (Sorry Paul). Actually I had a lot of complaints. Most of them had to deal with continuity. Stupid questions like “Why’s the kid on the bed now?” “How did they get in the tank?” “Why is he back in the bathroom?” Stupid stuff that most people won’t notice or care about. But I do. And some complaints about the movie’s physics. But honestly, it’s a movie about a guy who can shrink down to the size of an ant while maintaining his density but not his weight. You can forgive a few lapses in logic and physical continuity. A few things grow. A few things shrink. A few things happen because the plot demands them to happen. Don’t think too much about the science (or continuity) and you’ll have a good time. You’ll see gaping holes large enough to drive a TANK through (heh heh) but you’ll still have a good time. It’s a good movie.

Ant-Man-7

“Nice. Keep saying good things so she doesn’t kick my ass. I’ll be hiding in the suit.”

And I loved the cast. I absolutely loved Paul Rudd in this. He is the perfect Ant-Man. He was fantastic because he wasn’t too much Paul Rudd and yet he was the right amount of Paul Rudd. If you know what I mean.

YellowJacket

“I’ll kick your ass in the suit little man.” “Okay… I’m getting out of the suit.”

Also Michael Douglas is amazing as Hank Pym (the first Ant-Man) as is Ant-Man’s best friend and celly from prison, Michael Peña. Who plays the movie’s comic relief (and is very very funny). I’m just not the biggest fan of Evangeline Lilly. She can’t act.

Not the biggest fan?

“Not the biggest… FAN… of Evan-geline… LILLY? Thinks… I can’t… ACT.”

Hold on. I believe Evangeline Lilly is one of the most beautiful women on the planet. Like top three. Like top five at least. Gorgeous. Stunning. Like stunningly beautiful. But her acting is not… quite… the best (NOT IN THE FACE). And her hair in this is horrible. Really bad. And I get why her hair is like that. You get it by the end. But it just looks bad on her. However, she doesn’t ruin it for me. She doesn’t ruin the movie. Truly the only acting bug I found, that annoyed me, was the guy with the bad Russian accent. I mean really. What is this Boris and Natasha shit? But of course, Ant-Man is not about the performances.

ant-man suit

“It’s about the suit, right? Am I right? The suit. I’m right, right? The suit? Tell me it’s the suit.”

Ant-man is about the spectacular special effects. The fight scenes where he shrinks and grows and jumps around punching guys and dodging bullets and flying through the air… Amazing. The fight scenes are the best thing about this movie. And it’s a superhero movie so that’s what you want. Also what you want from a superhero movie (these days) are cameos from other heroes and Ant-Man has some good ones from TV and other Marvel films. The best one they gave away in the new TV spot but I’m not going to give it away here. (stick around for the after credits scenes though. It gets even better)

Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly from Ant-Man

“He said it gets better after the credits.” “I know. I just like kicking your ass.”

So what do we got? The story is good. The acting is good. The special effects are good. the fight choreography is good. And there are some pretty cool cameos. So it should be a pretty spectacular movie. Right? It is NOT a spectacular movie. Because it is badly directed. This is the perfect example of everyone doing their job well (which granted is also a sign of good directing) but the movie lacking that certain something. (Jenna: “Qua?” Thank you Jenna [I didn’t even have to tell her to say it]) It’s just a little bland. Like a chef using all your favorite ingredients but forgetting to season. Music choices, editing, pacing? It’s hard to put your finger on it but Ant-Man is a good movie that’s a little bland.

“Dude. You’re gonna get me killed here.”

However, having said that, I really liked the movie and after a couple of months of bad movies in the theater and on home video, it’s good to at last see something decent and fun and funny. It’s very funny. And this is Peyton Reed’s first action movie. Let alone his first major blockbuster. So he is forgiven for not knowing how to keep the audience on the edge of their seats. And the fight scenes are awesome. Truly truly awesome.

Evangeline Lilly Ant-Man

“Yes. But what’s wrong with my hair? Let’s get back to that. So I can kick Paul’s ass some more.”

Ant-Man is a really good movie considering Evangeline Lilly’s bad hair (oof) and the director’s lack of experience with action movies (pow). It’s good. It’s good. It’s just not spectacular. And for Summer releases, you want spectacular.

– Mel

What’s Good? (Early Summer)

Early Summer Edition

This installment of What’s Good? (my top ten things I’m enjoying at the moment) is mostly summer television with a few real life stuff thrown in for good measure. (Ha – for GOOD measure – get it?. Ha ha. GET IT?)

Orson Welles

I want to apologize to the regular readers of my blog. I’ve phoned it in this summer. My head and my heart have been elsewhere. I’ve written. I added Jimi Hendrix to my book. (Can I do that? I hope I don’t get sued) It’s literally a long story (I’m on a roll) but one of the characters keeps a skull on her desk. She calls it the skull of the last musician. (It’s a post apocalyptic future) And (long story short) she gains access to an alien regeneration facility and she clones the skull. (It’s less a clone as we know it and more of a recreation of the man before he died. Again long story) But I’ve been researching his interviews and trying to get his voice right. And I’ve been a little obsessed with it. It’s not a big part of the story. It’s just something that happens still I’ve tried to get it right. It’s a mad world.

To the list…

WHAT’S GOOD?

I’m glad you asked.

The 100

The 100 is pretty good. The first season is very exciting but I really enjoyed the second season of this post apocalyptic, young adult, action-drama about the survivors of a global nuclear apocalypse who have lived for generations on an orbiting space station before falling to earth. The first season moves so fast and the changes are drastic and quick and nobody is safe. It’s crazy. But during the second season, a more down-to-earth season, The 100 settles in for lots of political intrigue and survival action and coolness. A bunch of cool characters doing a lot of cool shit. It’s not sensational but it’s loads of fun and the cast is all good-looking and the main character is a serious bad-ass. I love her.

jonathan strange and mr norell

Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell is weirdly good. I like to think of Strange and Norrell as a prequel to the world of Harry Potter. It is about the return of magic to Great Britain. Very interesting. Very atmospheric. Some pretty cool effects and creepy mysticism and magic. A period piece where magic is accepted by the government and the society. A very dark and funny show. Six, creatively dense and magical episodes. Creepy good.

Museum-Entrance-photo-by-American-Museum-of-Natural-History

Museum Trips are really good. My next museum trip will probably be to the Natural History Museum on the west side of the park. I really enjoyed my trip to The Cloisters and my trip to The Met. I finally got out of the house for more than a quick excursion to the movies (from my home to a dark theater and back really shouldn’t count as leaving the house). I took a lot of pictures (see I have proof that I left the house). I’m keeping my promise to spend more time outside my comfort zone this year. Wish me luck.

mets-pitchers

The Mets Pitching is astonishingly good. I can’t believe the Mets are doing as well as they are with the line-up they have but they’re solidly in the race. It’s been too long since we’ve had a good team in Queens. So long I’ve forgotten what one looks like. And make no mistake, this is not a good Mets team but the Mets pitching staff is Amazin’ (I’m talking Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan, Jerry Koosman good). All of their starters can hit like sluggers as well as pitch like aces. They have a pretty decent bullpen and one of the best closers in the game. All they need to do now is pick up a veteran right-handed power hitter and these Metsies will be a force with which to be reckoned.

Let’s Go Mets!

mr-robot

Mr. Robot is sensationally good. I fucking love this show. If you haven’t seen it yet, try to catch up quick. This is pure cyberpunk. The smartest computer hacking ANYTHING, TV, movie whatever, I have ever seen. Smart, funny, cool, very fucking cool. Fantastic direction that feels like a 70’s hacker thriller about the future. Except the future is today. So everything is just state of the art but with this futuristic cyberpunk feel. I hope I’m not explaining this badly because it is incredible. There is nothing sci-fi about this show (so far). There is nothing futuristic yet the direction and camera work are retro. Making it feel like you’re watching some future shit but it’s in the present day.

Mr Robot

The story is good. The lead character has a hard time interacting with people so he hacks anyone with which he has to talk. He data-mines people’s lives and social media to understand them and gain the upper hand. The acting is good (except for Christian Slater. I’ve never liked that guy) There’s cool tech and all that good stuff. But just based on the way it is shot, this retro-future-present feel, that I’m doing a bad job of explaining, just based on that, it is my favorite thing on TV now. My absolute favorite. (with Halt and Catch Fire a close second)

The Last Ship

The Last Ship is satisfying-ly good. I loved the first season of this (yet another) post-apocalyptic drama. This one takes place after a disease outbreak that kills half the world’s population. One American battleship survives the outbreak and so the show is very Naval and military. I enjoy military shows when they’re done well. And this one is done very well. Not the best acting but a lot of great action and suspense. (It’s Michael Bay) It reminds me of Star Trek except the ship is a boat and not a star-ship. That’s how I look at it. The Last Ship is Star Trek for the ocean. And each season, so far, has had a kick-ass big bad. Last year it was a Russian destroyer. This year it’s a hijacked British submarine. If you’re not totally turned off by military or nautical adventures, The Last Ship is pretty damn good.

Penny Dreadful

Penny Dreadful is dark and sickly good. I love this show. I loved the second season more than the first. And I really loved the first season. I like the evolution of Billie Piper’s character a lot. If you don’t know, Penny Dreadful is the story of all the classic literary monsters in one place and at one time solving crimes or something. The show is a period piece. It’s very sexy. It’s very creepy. And dark. With Victor Frankenstein and his family (the monster, the bride), Vampires, Dorian Gray. But it ain’t hokey. It takes itself very seriously while being the story of all these campy movie monsters. And I love that.

Episode 101

But my favorite thing about it was when I realized that Josh Hartnett (minor spoiler but not really) wasn’t playing a werewolf. He’s the Wolfman. He’s the motherfucking Wolfman. That made me so happy. So please please please have Abbott and Costello show up in season three. PLEEEEEEEEEASE. Just a cameo. I’m completely serious. They are the glue that would tie it all together. Please. Pretty please. Abbott & Costello.

Marriage Equality is all kinds of good. This is old news now but finally America joined the 21st century when it comes to equal marriage rights for same-sex couples. It’s about damn time. And except for a couple of bigots in the south digging in it’s going well.

True Detective Season Two

True Detective Season Two is actually pretty good. Say what you want, I’m liking this season of True Detective better than the first season. Honestly. I like the cast better this time around. I like the story better. I like the setting better. It feels like the old L.A. detective stories and it hasn’t put me to sleep. The first season with Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson was really good but I had to watch every episode twice because I would usually fall asleep somewhere in the middle. Rachel McAdams and Colin Farrell are amazing. And even Vince Vaughn is growing on me. Loving it. And this last episode was off the hook. Action packed. Wow.

dark-matter-header

Dark Matter is a very good deep space drama based on a comic book. I love the sci-fi. I grew up on the sci-fi. But I can’t stand bad sci-fi. Most of the shows that embrace the genre are pretty damn bad. (More on that in a moment) But there are pleasant exceptions. I love Defiance. I still love Falling Skies. And after four episodes, I’m getting into Humans but I’m not quite sold yet. However, my favorite summer sci-fi show this year is a little show out of Canada called Dark Matter (on the SyFy channel). It’s a space adventure about six people and one android who wake up in deep space with no memory of their pasts. They assign numbers to themselves in the order they woke up. They pretty quickly identify each crew members strengths and fall into their obvious roles. Never really trusting, but needing each other to survive. It’s a nice story.

Dark Matter

And they don’t drag out the secret too long. They discover who they are pretty early on but they don’t know “those” people. Their real selves. They have no memory of them. Just strangers with their faces. So they decide to continue as One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six and the android. I really like this show. Please watch it. It’s like what you’d get if Firefly and the A-team had a baby with amnesia. Check it out.

Also check out this Suicide Squad teaser trailer with Margot Robbie, Will Smith and Jared Leto. I think it looks promising.

And now… for everything there is a dark side.

WHAT’S NOT so GOOD?

Summer Sci-fi Shows are traditionally not so good. (Extant, Killjoys, Dominion, Hannibal) Honestly guys It’s not enough to have some special effects and pretty actors and to air your show on date nights (when all the nerds are home). You have to have a story to tell and not just a premise to slowly roll out. And a mystery to tease.

Halle Berry Extant

Extant was actually pretty interesting the first season but instead of expounding on that, they fired half the cast and changed the whole damn thing. Like saying, all we need is Halle Berry. The nerds will keep watching. No. No we won’t. It looks to me like they’re trying to change a sci-fi mystery show about a woman giving birth to an alien into a futuristic procedural.

Killjoys

Killjoys is a horribly cheesy premise with a mediocre cast that benefits from being sandwiched between two good Friday SyFy shows. But it sucks. Most of all the acting. And the writing. And everything else about it. It just sucks. Something about bounty hunters or contract killers. Whatever. I just hope its stench doesn’t rub off on Dark Matter. Dark Matter is really fucking good.

Dominion SyFy

With Dominion I’m trying. I really am. I sort of liked the first season but I think I liked the sexiness of the angel Michael and also the general’s daughter. She’s a hottie too. So maybe it was the hotness of the cast that got me. But the story and the acting and the accents (I love you Anthony Stewart Head but your American accent is so very bad) make me want to give up on it. I’m pretty close to giving up on this show. Pretty close.

Hannibal

And lastly Hannibal. Listen. The reason I mention these shows is because I can’t help but watch them. These shows are made for me and my ilk. And I want them to be good. I want to like them because I want the powers that be to make more shows like this. Like Hannibal. I want to like Hannibal but that show is so far up its own ass it can see what it had for dinner last night. Honestly, the food is the best part of this convoluted and pretentious piece of crap. And I know the food is suppose to creep us out because he’s a cannibal or whatever. But it just makes me hungry. It looks so good. I’ve mentioned this before but I wanted Hannibal to be the anti-hero if not the hero proper. They make him completely unlikable. And it’s because in the first book he is the bad guy. And this series is based on the first book. I wanted something else. Hannibal is not enjoyable for me but I keep watching anyway. I heard they cancelled it. I’m not too sad about that.

I keep watching these crappy sci-fi shows but I can’t just watch them in silence. Mostly I yell at the screen saying, “Oh my god. That’s horrible. That’s so bad. Why am I watching this crap? Why, Mel? Why?”

I’ll tell you why. Because…

Summer DVDs

Summer DVDs are also notoriously not so good. I have a bunch of mini reviews in a folder. So I think I’ll throw them up here soon. I haven’t seen a good movie on home video yet this summer. I was waiting for a good one to come along before posting a 5 Quick Reviews of 5 New Releases for summer (yeah I was going to bring that back) but I’m up to six with nothing good in sight. I think I’ll post that next. They might be bad movies but a few were at least interesting (Slow West, The Voices)

And that’s all I got.

Quick Note. I really like getting nominated for those blog awards but I am the absolute worst at talking about myself without something to hide behind. Some device. Some gimmick. So it’s not like I ignore them. I actually try to write something and just get frustrated. I thought about doing one with just music. Ten songs that define or describe me. I found a good ten. But that wasn’t going well. So I whittled the list down. I had a seven and a five and I still may post one of those but at one point I cut it down to one song. I’m gonna post that here.

It’s Mayonaise by Smashing Pumpkins.

Fool enough to almost be it
Cool enough to not quite see it
Doomed
Pick your pockets full of sorrow
And run away with me tomorrow, June?
We’ll try and ease the pain
But somehow we’ll feel the same.
Well, no one knows
Where our secrets go.

I send a heart to all my dearies
When your life is oh, so dreary… dream.

I’m rumored to the straight and narrow
While the harlots of my perils SCREAM.
 

And I fail.
But when I can, I will.
Try to understand
That when I can, I will.

Mother’s weep the years I’m missing
All our time can’t be given back.

Shut my mouth and strike the demons
That cursed you and your reasons.
Out of hand and out of season
Out of love and out of feeling SO BAD.
When I can, I will
Words defy the plans.
When I can, I will

Fool enough to almost be it
And cool enough to not quite see it.
And old enough to always feel this
Always old, I’ll always feel this!

No more promise no more sorrow
No longer will I follow
Can anybody hear me?
I JUST WANT TO BE me.
When I can, I will.
Try to understand
That when I can,

I will.

If I don’t say it enough,

I love you guys.

Until next time,

– Mel