^ Plan aborted. First Listen Friday happened, and I immediately used Excessive Repeat to allow Glee to brainwash me into loving all three available songs. Including/especially this one. Magic voice, etc. That is a relief, to be honest. As long as I keep it context free and think of them like a cover band where there was never an option to have anyone else sing it, they sound wonderful.
Which means now there will be a War Between The Versions in my music library.
Even Love Shack lost that war! Originals always lose that war. And I am not ready to lose my beloved song just because my ears are stupid and sorcery is involved. #dilemmas
I finally got around to watching GCB last week, and aww, it is tons of fun! Not evil and awful like the original title suggested at all!
I cannot pretend to take it seriously in the slightest; everyone is such a loopy caricature it might as well be an animated cartoon, but they have assembled an excellent group of actresses playing appealing characters (so far it's definitely one of those awesome ladies/dull dudes shows). And Cheno is, as hoped, by far my favorite part of it. She is terrifically good at being evil with a sweet smile on her face. The only problem I have identified with her is that she has the unfortunate tendency to get one of those...blood-carrying things, that I can't say the name of or look directly at? become very prominent in her forehead when she has a particularly intense expression that makes it impossible to look at her.
I assume its chances aren't good, and I can't see myself making a specific appointment to watch it on a regular basis or catch it online if I miss it, but it was a really fun way to pass a lazy Sunday evening hour.
Deserves a mention this week just so I can talk about how awesome Kim is and how magnificent it was to watch her pull off a coup like that. To not only orchestrate getting rid of another guy when they're already down 5-6, but then see to it at that two women vote differently so she doesn't have to tip her hand too early? AND to do so in damage control mode after one of her allies stupidly blurts out comments that raise suspicion? GLORIOUS.
(that said, I do hope that Jay somehow manages to stick around longer than Alicia. He's the only one of the guys who isn't obnoxious dead weight)
She's doing the kind of things that get you labeled "backstabbing traitor" at Final Tribal, and yet it's hard to see her that way at all because she's just so cheerful about it. She is the smoothest talker I've ever seen; no wonder everyone just does what she tells them to without question. She never appears to be scrambling, nor does she ever seem malicious, just like she's playing a master chess game and knows exactly which pieces to move and when to move them for maximum results.
I'm liking Sabrina more every episode, just because she has a similar impressive ability to manage people without ever ruffling feathers -- she's so calm about it that you don't even realize you're being managed. I could get behind a final three with her, Chelsea & Kim.
Enjoyed the reward challenge being full of 7UP. Product placement is fine when it's for something awesome, is my motto.
Oh, and having Boring Mike voted out made my day. Even more than Jay pulling off a magnificent challenge win after "I hate puzzles," with Kim hot on his heels. (I especially loved how there was a collective groan of disappointment from the sidelines when she failed the last time. People wanted her to win! Or they just wanted the challenge to be over. I take it as liking Kim. Because she is the best.)
In conclusion: People with "zan" in their name need to GTFO of my show ASAP; otherwise, I am basically happy with or at least not offended by everyone still playing. This is good. This is the groove we like to see Survivor get in, even if it tends to take half the season.
Community, "Pillows and Blankets"
I am somewhat literally speechless. Bar none top tier, series highlight, *possible* season champion (but probably still second place, because, Christmas songs)
Like, I spent the first five minutes leaning on my elbows with my chin in my hands, gazing in starry eyed rapture with eyes glazed over in sheer joy. I had no idea this was supposed to spoof Ken Burns -- but I have seen a lot of PBS in my years, so maybe I have seen Ken Burns before and just didn't know it, since the style certainly looked familiar. Which was what made it so fantastic. A TV show's sheer willingness to constantly freeze frame and use still photographs for a significant portion of the episode is an impressive move.
Factor in all the other shooting styles, between "student cell phone footage," voiceovers from all the parties involved, and the Dramatic Slo Mo, and this episode had better get nominated for all the directing awards. All of them. The writing was spot on too -- the sheer amount of thought and planning that went into this episode's structure is mind boggling and became apparent no more than sixty seconds in, which probably contributed to the chin-hand gazing.
I can literally only think of one thing I did not like about this episode, and that was the language-monitoring people getting way too complacent. Since when is di-- an insult we can use without bleeping? Do not want. Take it off my airwaves and keep it off, kthnxbai. That was really jarring and I'm using it as further proof that vulgarity only detracts from a storyline and never enhances it, EVERYONE WHO WON'T STOP WHINING ABOUT "BULLY" AND THE MPAA'S RATING SYSTEM THIS MONTH. (I have been repressing so much fury about that it's practically giving me an ulcer.)
Really, though. They even took their biggest general problem and stuffed him into a pillow costume for half the episode so we didn't even have to see his face. Thumbs up! In fact, if we could somehow hit him with some sort of mutating ray or maybe alien technology that fuses him into Pillow Man permanently, I would be on board.
Here is a probably-incomplete list of things that were wonderful: Jeff and Annie's text message exchanges, the fact that Annie is on a healthcare administration track -- I feel like we did not know that until now? or I don't pay attention, Troy & Abed's outfits, the midnight raid on innocent Pillowtown civilians, Abed's crippling email of detached yet dibilitating emotional cruelty, Troy's vicious YOU WILL NEVER HAVE FRIENDS, WEIRDO revenge (so great I may have sent up a rallying cheer), Britta being so bad it's awesome at photography (though it kind of sucked that she got left on the sidelines again)...
The Changlorious Basterds (who knew there was a reason they were introduced?), Leonard being a Korean war vet (North Korea), the helpful map graphics, Jeff gleefully rabble-rousing both sides in an attempt to stave off class, Jeff being roped in as reluctant mediator, initially failing but eventually becoming wildly successful at it (Friendship Hats!), Troy and Abed dully hitting each other with pillows to prolong the last moments of their friendship, the heartwarming makeup...
(second deep breath)
Greendale Campus Television and its assortment of magnificent alternate DVDs (I am curious about From Labs to Riches: The Annie's Boobs Story), "Jeffrey, find me!" (Jeffrey: *is casually leaning against a wall, filming the carnage*), "Real Neil with Pipes of Steel," Ski Shoot Sing, and who could forget this magnificent ode?
Pillows, but no sleep
Feathers, but no birds
Pajamas without children
Violence without purpose
I saw Mommy kissing Exxon Mobile
"Poet by choice, lesbian by birth"
Oh, and "If I write stuff down in a Hello Kitty book will you like me again?" was my favorite part of the Jeff and Annie interaction, because I have difficulty truly shipping them most of the time, but I like the aspect of their friendship where even though she's just a kid, he craves her approval. Even if it is mostly subconscious.
(literally could not believe when I hit the review circuit to put on the final touches of this post and found the comments overwhelmingly full of negativity and complaining. What is this madness??)
Wow, ran out of steam fast tonight.