ltmurnau: (Default)
A collection of 30 Arnold Schwarzenegger TV commercials from Japan, from the early 90s:

Good Lord, I remember seeing almost ALL of these commercials on TV when I lived over in Japan, 1990-92.

One of my treasured possessions from my time there is my Arnold Schwarzenegger cup noodles - yes, Nissin actually made some up with his face on them, they were sort of seafood flavour - probably not edible after 20 years but I have it on my bookshelf still (you can see a glimpse of it in the very last commercial).

And that vitamin drink, like most of the other vitamin drinks they were hawking at the time, tasted like cotton candy dissolved in some water in which someone had left a cigarette butt to steep overnight.

They even had spin-offs from the commercials - I remember one of my students had a page-protector printed with an image from the commercial of Schwarzenegger with the tea kettles (about the 5:55 mark). And I nicked one of those vitamin drink banners from a local pharmacy, and flew it later over our camp the first time I went to Burning Man, when “Shuwa-chan” was governor of California….
ltmurnau: (Default)
I think I first wrote about this back in January 2009 (
But on reading this article, it appears to be just an American copycat of this British show that aired in the fall of 2009, without any of the mentoring or development-of-a-starting-artist aspect - instead it just becomes another demented party game.

Visual art reality show set for TV debut
Last Updated: Friday, June 4, 2010 | 2:08 PM ET CBC News

The producers behind hit reality-TV competitions Top Chef and Project Runway have created a new contest pitting contemporary visual artists against one another.

Work of Art: The Next Great Artist will have its debut on U.S. cable channel Bravo on June 9 and will see 14 artists compete in weekly art challenges in a variety of media.

The grand prize is $100,000 US and a solo exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum.

Production company Magical Elves hopes its new show will do for visual art what Top Chef and Project Runway helped do for cooking and fashion: namely, take a mainstream, TV-watching audience behind the scenes to better understand what goes into artistic creation.

"When we started reaching out to the art community, we were worried that people would be against the idea of a reality show. What we found was that people were pretty receptive," Dan Cutforth, one of the executive producers, told Reuters.

More than 2,000 artists — from oil painters to conceptual artists — applied for a spot on Work of Art.

The main judging panel will include art critic Jerry Saltz and New York gallery owners Bill Powers and Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn. They will be joined by a number of guest judges that include mixed-media artist Jon Kessler, photographer Andres Serrano, painter Richard Phillips and photographer-director David LaChapelle.

Art auctioneer Simon de Pury serves as a mentor to the contestants, while the show will be hosted by actress and model China Chow, who spouts the requisite dismissal catchphrase: "Your work of art didn’t work for us."

Though the contestants may fit certain reality show archetypes (e.g., the villain, the misfit, the front-runner), the goal is to give a boost to the struggling artists and to encourage more mainstream discussion and acceptance of visual art, according to the producers — who include actress Sarah Jessica Parker's company Pretty Matches.

"I hope that people will feel more comfortable talking about their opinions about art, or wanting to have opinions about art," Magical Elves producer Jane Lipsitz told Vanity Fair.

"That's our goal."
ltmurnau: (Default)
Yoinked from [ profile] presterjohn who got it from.

I don't know if I can list 15, but here goes, in no particular order:

Rules: List 15 TV series you've seen all/most of the episodes of that will always stick with you. Series you have bought/would buy on DVD if money was no object. Don't take too long to think about it. First fifteen you can recall in no more than fifteen minutes.

1. Pee-Wee's Playhouse (own it)
2. The Prisoner (not the terrible 2009 remake, of course) (own it, been watching it the last two weeks)
3. Kids In the Hall (have some)
4. SCTV (have most of what's available on DVD)
5. Rocket Robin Hood (which I see has just come out on DVD, don't think I will get it though)
6. Batman (why Why WHY haven't they released the campy old Batman on DVD? It's not even on TV any more. I'd get this one like a shot.)
7. Original Star Trek (wouldn't bother to get this)
8. Twin Peaks (own it)
9. The Munsters (own it)
10. The Addams Family (own it)
11. Combat! (better than Rat Patrol) (own some, did you know Robert Altman directed many of these?)
12. Blackadder (own it)
13. The Young Ones (own it)
14. Monty Python's Flying Circus (wouldn't bother to get it; unlike many of my nerdy kin, I do know much of the dialogue but never repeat it in public)
15. Fawlty Towers (see above)

There, I did it.

Now from [ profile] jeffreyab:

"List the towns or cities where you spent at least one night away from home during 2009. Mark with a star if you had multiple non-consecutive."

1. Orlando, FL (conference)
2. Osoyoos, BC (vacation)
3. Mt. Vernon, WA (well, a tent outside the town - Burning Man regional event)

Never been to any of these places before in my life.
ltmurnau: (Default)
I guess this had to happen at some point...I guess it's not even that nice an idea to begin with either.

Reality show taps famed collector Saatchi to discover new art star

Last Updated: Monday, January 26, 2009 | 12:56 PM ET CBC News

Having succeeded in discovering fresh new singers, dancers and actors, reality TV is now turning its attention to the visual art world — with a new BBC series that will enlist the help of influential art collector Charles Saatchi to spot new British talent.

Former advertising mogul Saatchi will serve as a mentor to and judge of the young artist competitors in the new BBC series Saatchi's Best of British, the broadcaster has announced.
Read more... )

Installation, performance art, digital media - I suppose these are what counts today, digital media being the most prevalent (and in a sense supplanting painting, drawing and photography) and probably lucrative, but installations and performance art getting the biggest headlines (note the references to Tracey Emin). But the site for submission says,

"You can apply by uploading between 3-5 images and/or films of your artwork and by telling us a bit about yourself. The artwork you submit can be in any medium e.g. installations, digital media, painting, sculpture, printmaking, performance art and others. You can also upload a film of yourself talking about your artwork if you wish."

I wonder if there will be anything at all interesting about what comes out of this, or will the producers have the final say on what gets shown - my bet's on the latter. Something cheeky, something obvious, nothing that challenging or outrageous. And what's the point of giving these people three months of "intensive art school" - I wonder who will be picked to tutor them?
ltmurnau: (Default)

I can't get the goddamn music of "Rocket Robin Hood" out of my head.

Not just the theme, now my daily routine is beginning to be invaded by the damn INCIDENTAL music. From Kevin McCorry's excellent resource page (

"Equally effective is the music, including such melodies as an instrumental rendition of the main title song, played whenever Sherwood Asteroid is introduced and probably meant to signify brotherhood and good will. An "old technology" theme frequently plays over long, fading shots of machinery, for example when Tondo, the "underground gentleman" of "Lord of the Shadows", briefs Robin on the history and achievements of the indigenous race of the planet invaded by Dr. Nocturne, and when the Minutae civilization is first shown in "Space Giant". A music of similar feel is used in other scenes in which Robin and the Merry Men meet alien races or speculate on the nature of a menace, such as that of "Dementia Five". A tune sounding like two drumsticks being clapped together accompanies the emergence of a problem or challenge, like Baron Blank's setting of a trap for Robin and Will Scarlet in "Who'll Kill Rocket Robin?", or the surrounding of Robin and friends by the robot mummies in "The Solar Sphinx". One of the most haunting pieces of music in the series is the synthesized piano/pipe mix which plays over Robin and Little John's ordeal in "Dementia Five" and with the first appearance of the Flying Dutchman in "The Ghost Pirates". It is also heard at length in "Dr. Mortula"."

Or rather,

(plays in my head when I walk to work)

(plays in my head when I'm doing something sneaky or intricate)

(plays in my head any time I need to think hard)

Can't find any darn images of the quite-underdressed Maid Marian except this, in the background shadow of a haggard Friar Tuck:

And finally, unfortunately I cannot give you a link to the little vignette about Friar Tuck, featuring his take-one-bite-and-toss-the-food move, but it's on Youtube as one of the related videos to the end-credits shown above.
ltmurnau: (Default)
File this under, "Nice idea but you know somehow it's just going to be bad."

It always amazed me how Bob & Doug took off (nyeah) so quickly in the US - perhaps because it innately confirmed the impression Americans would like to have of us as slightly dim, harmless and basically friendly people.

Funnier still when you consider that Moranis and Thomas invented these characters when they were just goofing around in front of the camera, after the CRTC had made some demands for more explicitly Canadian content (this is why the early Bob & Doug sketches have the long, involved crawl explaining about "Kanadian Korner").

Fox wants piece of Bob and Doug McKenzie

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 17, 2008 | 11:19 AM ET

The Fox network has signed up to develop The Animated Adventures of Bob & Doug McKenzie, a cartoon based on the famous Canadian hosers.

The Hollywood Reporter said Monday that Fox has become involved with the pilot episode and will back Canada's Global network to create the first 13 episodes.

Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas, who developed the original Bob and Doug for an SCTV skit in 1980, will voice the cartoon.

They created an unlikely hit by playing the slightly dim, beer-swilling, lumberjack jacket-wearing Bob and Doug.

Thomas told the Hollywood Reporter the animated series will set the hoser brothers in a fictional town with family and friends.

Comedians Dave Coulier, Colin Mochrie, Pat McKenna, Derek McGrath, Ron Pardo, Jayne Eastwood and Ho Chow will also voice characters in the series.

Fox has had great success with its animated series, including The Simpsons and American Dad.

The co-production deal between Global and Fox marks a trend in Canadian TV. Global is working with NBC on Howie Do It, a prank comedy show starring Howie Mandel and CTV is working with CBS on cop drama Flashpoint. CBC's Sophie is also to air on ABC.
ltmurnau: (Default)
For some reason, I want to sit at my desk shout-singing the theme to Rocket Robin Hood:

Come gather around me,
Space travelers surround me,
Hark now to the ballad
Of Rocket Robin Hood.

I may well confound you,
Astound you, spellbound you,
With heroes and villains,
The bad and the good.

Watch now as our rockets
Race here from afar.
For now, with our Robin
We live on a star.

[spoken: Three. Two. One. Blast off!]

Band of brothers, marching together
Heads held high in all kinds of weather
With fiery blasts, our roaring rockets rise
Beyond the Earth, beyond the skies!

At the side of Robin, take your stand
He's the gallant leader of our band
Send a joyous shout throughout the land!
For Roc-ket Rob-in Hooooood!

Just don't get in my way, or I might do it.

ltmurnau: (Default)
Just for future reference, because people often do not believe me - it might be possible that a younger Mike Myers, then 13 and growing up in Scarborough, could have known about this show and used it as the inspiration (from the Canadian TV Archive,

Sprockets (1975-1976) (series)

Sprockets was a CBC series that provided a television window on independent filmmaking in Canada in the mid- 1970s. The program showcased experimental and animated short films, but most were short dramas or documentaries. Among the films to go on the air were At 99: A Portrait of Louise Tandy Murch, by Deepa Saltzman; O Canada, by Henning Jacobsen; Dull Day Demolition, produced by Insight Productions; The Brotherhood, by Vancouver animator Al Sens; and The Journals of Susanna Moodie, by Marie Waisberg.

Frederick Manter....Host
Michael Hirsh....Host
Mark Stone....Host
Whitney Smith....Host
Jana Veverka....Host

It's possible - on looking up some of his bio trivia, Myers got an early start in show business (a TV commercial with Gilda Radner at age nine, doing a project on Lorne Michaels in Grade 8 (1978?), getting hired at Second City the day he graduated from high school). He also seems to be quite the nerd - collects model soldiers, played D&D in high school (whence the SNL character "Lothar of the Hill People").

More Sprockets trivia:

In June 2000 Myers was sued by Universal Pictures for $3.8 million for backing out of his contract to play Dieter in a feature film version of "Sprockets". Myers was quoted to say he would refuse to honor the $20 million contract rather than "cheating moviegoers with an unacceptable script".

In 1991 there aired on British TV a film program for Dandelion Productions called "Sprockets". It was co-presented by Barbie Wilde, a Canadian-born "classically-trained robotic mime" who also appeared in Hellraiser II. Hm!


Nov. 6th, 2007 03:09 pm
ltmurnau: (Default)
Yoinked from today's Vancouver Sun:

How the screenwriters' strike will affect you
Alex Strachan, CanWest News Service
Published: Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Read more... )

I don't understand this.

Why don't the networks access the legions of deluded viewers who think that because they've seen every episode of a given TV show ever aired, they could write scripts for new ones? What about all that shitty fanfic clogging the Tubes of the Internetwork?

They'd be happy to be scabs, they'd do it for a fraction of the price - hell, they'd even do it for free, just for the thrill of seeing their name on the screen for a quarter of a second.

There's quite a precedent - it all began with reality TV, as a way of generating content that was almost free. All the media outlets now regularly have "send us your video" sites and so forth, so that some goombah can stand in the path of an oncoming tornado with his cell phone camera, thus relieving a reporter of having to do the same with a cameraman. You don't have to pay the goombah, he's happy to say, "Awesome, I fuckin' shot that!" (to steal the title of that Beastie Boys film, assembled entirely from film their fans shot at concerts).

Yeah, all they need to do is set up a mailbox on the corporate website to accept e-mailed scripts, run them through some kind of formatting program, and print them off for the actors. I feel we're only a few years away from an actual "versificator", the novel-writing machine that George Orwell described in 1984. Remove humans from the process completely, until it's time to consume the product.

What about quality, you say? Well, I hadn't noticed much of that lately. This strike is all a squabble about division of sales and ad revenue. The networks have already said, "Well, if this goes on, we'll just go to reruns of the same crappy programs indefinitely, and when we get tired of that, there's two generations more of shitty archived TV to put on the air (we always wanted to see Hill Street Blues back on...)". Don't look for people finding other things to do with their time; most people will watch any old garbage. And I certainly wouldn't look for Little Mosque on the Prairie or (yech) Corner Gas to reach a significantly larger audience either - faint hope there!
ltmurnau: (Default)
As [ profile] sonjaaa said, real news that reads as if it were written for The Onion.

Last Updated: Saturday, 30 June 2007, 18:02 GMT 19:02 UK

Hamas 'Mickey Mouse' killed off

A Palestinian TV station has killed off a controversial Mickey Mouse lookalike that critics said was spreading anti-US and anti-Israeli messages to children.

The Hamas-affiliated al-Aqsa channel aired the last episode on Friday, showing the character, Farfur, being beaten to death by an "Israeli agent".
Read more... )
Me, I thought they cut it because they didn't want to tangle with Disney's lawyers.

There are some clips of the show on Youtube, I'll leave it as an exercise for the reader to ferret out the one where the ripoff Mouse is beaten to death by the simulated Jew.

[EDIT: Oh all right, here it is:]
ltmurnau: (Default)
I won an Ernie Kovacs trivia contest!

Well, only because I was the only one nerdy enough to go through a VHS tape of the requisite show. But when it comes to Kovacs, accuracy counts!
ltmurnau: (Default)
Amazing Kreskin foresees 'innovative' reality show coming to Canada in 2007

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2007 | 5:39 PM ET

TORONTO (CP) - Famed mentalist the Amazing Kreskin predicts an "innovative" development will take place on the Canadian broadcasting front this year - a homegrown reality show that will influence programming south of the border.

"It will not take place in Toronto, it will not take place in Vancouver, but I think it's going to break a record as far as reality shows go in this country and could be carried in the States," Kreskin, 72, said in a rambling, nearly two-hour long interview Tuesday.
Read more... )

I remember watching his show on TV when I was a kid...
Could this be real?
Which is more likely, a reality-TV program that's actually interesting or at least innovative or Paris Hilton winning an Academy Award?
ltmurnau: (Grandpa Munster)

'Munsters' star Yvonne De Carlo dies
By BOB THOMAS, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES - Yvonne De Carlo, the beautiful star who played Moses' wife in "The Ten Commandments" but achieved her greatest popularity on TV's "The Munsters," has died. She was 84.

De Carlo died of natural causes Monday at the Motion Picture & Television facility in suburban Los Angeles, longtime friend and television producer Kevin Burns said Wednesday.

Read more... )

So, the last living Munster is Butch Patrick (who also seems to have made the most money milking his childhood role).
ltmurnau: (Default)
Co-creator of Yogi Bear, Flintstones dies at 95
Last Updated: Tuesday, December 19, 2006 | 11:01 AM ET
CBC Arts

Joe Barbera, half of the Hanna-Barbera animation team that produced such beloved cartoon characters as Tom and Jerry, Yogi Bear and the Flintstones, died Monday, a Warner Bros. spokesman said.

Barbera, 95, died of natural causes at his home with his wife Sheila at his side, Warner Bros. spokesman Gary Miereanu said.

With his longtime partner Bill Hanna, Barbera first found success creating the highly successful Tom and Jerry cartoons. The antics of the battling cat and mouse went on to win seven Academy Awards, more than any other series with the same characters.

The partners, who had first teamed up while working at MGM in the 1930s, then went on to a whole new realm of success in the 1950s with a witty series of animated TV comedies, including The Flintstones, The Jetsons, Yogi Bear, Scooby-Doo and Huckleberry Hound and Friends.

Their strengths melded perfectly, critic Leonard Maltin wrote in his book Of Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons. Barbera brought the comic gags and skilled drawing, while Hanna brought warmth and a keen sense of timing.

"This writing-directing team may hold a record for producing consistently superior cartoons using the same characters year after year —without a break or change in routine," Maltin wrote.

"From the Stone Age to the Space Age and from primetime to Saturday mornings, syndication and cable, the characters he created with his late partner, William Hanna, are not only animated superstars, but also a very beloved part of American pop culture. While he will be missed by his family and friends, Joe will live on through his work," Warner Bros. chairman and CEO Barry Meyer said Monday.

Hanna, who died in 2001, once said he was never a good artist but his partner could "capture mood and expression in a quick sketch better than anyone I've ever known."

The two first teamed cat and mouse in the short Puss Gets the Boot. It earned an Academy Award nomination, and MGM let the pair keep experimenting until the full-fledged Tom and Jerry characters eventually were born.

Jerry was borrowed for the mostly live-action musical Anchors Aweigh, dancing with Gene Kelly in a scene that become a screen classic.

After MGM folded its animation department in the mid-1950s, Hanna and Barbera were forced to go into business for themselves. With television's sharply lower budgets, their new cartoons put more stress on verbal wit rather than the detailed — and expensive — action featured in theatrical cartoons.

Cartoon Network should have a Harvey Birdman marathon in memoriam tonight.
And I'm pretty sure Yogi and Boo-Boo were queer... sharing a cave and all that.

"Hey Hey, Boo-Boo! Assume the position!"
"Ohhhh, Yogi...."
ltmurnau: (Default)
Dudley Do-Right writer dies

Last Updated: Monday, December 18, 2006 | 11:56 AM ET
CBC Arts

Chris Hayward, a television writer who brought his off-beat sense of humour to the Rocky and Bullwinkle TV show and comedies such as Get Smart and Barney Miller, has died.

Read more... )

This guy had some of the cleverest scripts, and certainly the concept guy behind The Munsters deserves to be remembered.

All of the good humour seems to be draining out of this world. I think it was Mort Sahl who started the practice of reading newspaper headlines to present truth as comedy, this is all we are left with now....
ltmurnau: (Default)

Read more... )

Ave atque vale.
ltmurnau: (Default)

Grandpa Munster Al Lewis dead at 82

Read more... )

[EDIT: It's not generally known, but Al Lewis was also a long-time radical and labour organizer. Read this transcript of an interview he did in 1997 with the "underground" paper The Shadow - very informative!]
ltmurnau: (Default)
Betty likes to watch crime shows, all that CSI and Law and Order stuff. Sometimes I sit and watch it with her. The other night we watched a rerun that I found quite annoying.

January 30, 2005 @ 9PM Eastern

VIXEN FIXIN' TO CHEAT LONELY MEN OUT OF THEIR EXPENSIVE RARE COLLECTIONS -- After police accidentally shoot to death an innocent collector of expensive toys, Detectives Goren (Vincent D'Onofrio) and Eames (Kathryn Erbe) discover that the victim might have fallen prey to a conniving vixen (guest star Kim Director) who trolls sci-fi and vampire conventions in sexy outfits looking for lonely men who have amassed rare and valuable collections desired by cult-like fans. The detectives attend a costume ball for fans of a "crypt club" and find a death-obsessed secret society -- some of whom could be responsible for a real murder. Jamey Sheridan and Courtney B. Vance also star. TV-14

I've been way too busy today to post in detail what it was about this episode that bothered me so much, or the various plot twists, but suffice it to say that this show seems, in its never-ending reach for semi-plausible plots, to have fallen to the temptation of bringing selected subcultures in, one by one, for an on-air drubbing.

The message seems to be, Ha-ha! Nerds Are Always Good For A Laugh.

Whether they are doing what Society wants them to do - mostly, be invisible except to fix computers, do shit-jobs, run "quirky" shops or have their costume balls crashed by incognito Big Dicks - or they transgress the social order in more identifiable and punishable ways, you can always push them around and crack a few jokes at their perpetual expense. It helps if they dress funny, too.

The climactic 3-4 minute speech in every episode where Vincent D'Onofrio badgers the "alleged perp" until he breaks down and confesses was pretty bad in this episode. Vinnie gets in that little vampire-wannabe copywriter's face and berates him for having a group of friends who "sucked out all his identity", with their "pathetic little vampire sex", and lets him know, in a convenient plot twist, that the rubber-gasket-wearing, nerd-trolling con-vixen who was sucking up all his money actually loved him all along and was actually fixin' to go straight, but he murdered her instead. As he is led away in cuffs, Vinnie pronounces the epitaph: "Oh, these people can deal with reality all right. It's fantasy they can't handle." Domm-da-dom-dom.

And yes, I am fully aware of the the irony of posting my vexation on my online journal.
ltmurnau: (Default)
I guess you are all wondering how I spent New Year's Eve, albeit quietly. I spent it quietly too, watching with Aki a long video compilation of Christmas-themed cartoons my sister made for me. It could have been boring, especially since the gin ran out, but for three examples of the most astoundingly brain-damaged piece of holiday film footage I've ever seen:

Santa Claus and his Helpers:
Santa's Magic Kingdom:
Santa's Enchanted Village:

You must read this background, and one day, when I get enough curare and ibogaine together to hold you all still for it, you shall watch these features with me.

Thank you, K. Gordon Murray. You saved Christmas for me!
ltmurnau: (the kitty who snapped one day)
From today's paper (bits edited):

Martha moved off Canadian airwaves
Read more... )


ltmurnau: (Default)

September 2017

1011121314 1516


RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 23rd, 2017 07:23 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios