Sunday Television “bits and bobs”
Tonight’s episode was one of the best of the last few years. Odd, because, aside from the Robot Chicken intro (which, BTW, how have they not done a Robot Chicken Simpsons yet? Copyright, I suppose. Then again, what would it mean to do a cartoon of a cartoon? Though, the ubiquity of Simpsons merchandise seems perfect for Robot Chicken), it wasn’t anything special, in fact they had done both A and B plot lines before, but it was just a solid episode that didn’t feel like a “zombie” Simpsons episode. Also, the Justin Bieber anti-cameo was inspired.
I was so happy to see Regular Sized Rudy again as well as Linda’s porcelain babies. Coffee Tina didn’t really work for me (did she remind anyone else of Abed?) and Louise didn’t have anything to do. But right now this show can do no wrong, once again presenting an over-the-top situation that is still grounded in real-world experience (seriously, I think Andy and Ollie were on one of my little league teams), that is ridiculous and somewhat heartfelt without telegraphing that emotion.
Game of Thrones
For an episode that was basically setting the table it was fairly entertaining, though some of the elements are getting a bit worn thin: the Theon torture subplot has quickly turned into the least interesting thing on the show and better pay off, and Ygrit is running out of things about which to claim that Jon Snow doesn’t know.
It has to be a strange situation for Christopher Guest doing a TV series after about every other show on TV is basically using the templates his movies helped create. But there’s something in Family Tree that I can’t put my finger on that separates it from all the other comedic, specialized mockumentaries. I’m not sure if its a gentleness or subtlety, but I think in most cases mocumentaries on TV are employed, in part, to exploit improvisation, to have an excuse for things that exceed a given plot outline. But Guest is using it for different purposes; it feels like the PBS version (as opposed to the network version) of the mockumentary; I mean that in the best way and it’s a refreshing thing. I love what I’ve seen so far. If you have access to HBO you should check it out; there’s a lot of potential here. Also, Monkey puppet.
Today is the 20th anniversary of Whacking Day!
In 1993 during The Simpsons fourth season, the town of Springfield introduced us all to Whacking Day and no snake has been safe since. Celebrated annually on May 10th, on Whacking Day the people of Springfield drive all the snakes into the town square and club them to death.
Click the link, the promo doesn’t do justice to the full episode.