Five games in, UK is 4-1. Be truthful, raise your hand if you projected that →
KSR’s take on recent non sports related happenings
By Richmond Bramblet on ©October 08th, 2015 @ 8:30am
Here it is. The first episode of Funkhouser’s new game show, Listicuffs. In this debut episode, we figured we would start big and bring together Drew Franklin and Tyler Thompson to go head to head in a battle of useless knowledge. Who will come out on top and advance to the Semifinals in our Listicuffs tournament? Watch and find out!
By Megan Suttles on ©October 07th, 2015 @ 3:00pm
Finishing the first season of HBO’s The Leftovers felt like an accomplishment. Similar to a one-minute plank, you assume something good will come out of it. But while you are in the moment, it all seems so painful and tedious. The premise of the show is what made all the agony seem worth my time. 2% of the world’s population mysteriously disappears. Everyone left has to deal with missing the taken or the guilt of being one that is left behind. There are so many avenues to explore in what seems like an alternate universe ripped from an episode of The Twilight Zone. Unlike my commitment to one-minute planks, I have reaped the reward from all of the tediousness and confusion that the first season of The Leftovers wrought.
Season one was work, but the finale made it all worth it. Many (not all) of the loose ends in the story were tied together. (I’m being purposefully vague here. If I can’t have someone do planks for me, then you can’t have someone watch all the bat crap crazy parts of The Leftovers for you.)
This week, HBO aired the season two premiere.
It was immediately clear to me that there will be the same amount of frustration with this season. I will say “This better make sense!” the same amount of times. But, this time, I’m going to trust that there will be some sort of resolution in the end. Here are some clues I’ve gathered that may or may not be helpful as evidence of what is going on in this season of The Leftovers.
Exhibit A: The Opening Credits
Percentage of Helpfulness: 55%
Last season, the opening credits felt heavy. Interpreting the images felt like analyzing an art history textbook. The music behind the images was wordless and somber. This season, it sounds like HBO dug up the Dixie Chicks (it’s actually Iris Dement) and had them sing about how we should “let the mystery be” with a fun, folksy melody behind it.
The new opening credits match the change in the show’s tone. Miracle, TX is a total change from Mapleton, NY. There are no sad deer, no silent cults and I didn’t see one stray dog. It is obvious that this alteration should influence our interpretation of the show. I’m just unsure how long this cheerful tone will last throughout the season.
Exhibit B: Cave-Lady Births & Earthquakes
Percentage of Helpfulness: 32%
When the “previously ons” aired, I was confused. When the new opening credits aired, I was concerned I recorded the wrong show. When the cave-lady birthed a baby, I was sure my drink had been laced with a hallucinogen. This was either the fakest or realest birthing scene I’d ever witnessed.
I just hope that the show isn’t pretentious enough to just have the birth for the shock and awe of an alarming opening scene. Cave-lady better come back or all of my nightmares about the snake and baby will be for nothing.
Exhibit C: Naked Running
Percentage of Helpfulness: 100%
As a rule, you cannot just casually have your characters running naked through the woods without explaining that behavior.
If this isn’t addressed by the end of this season, then I’m out.
Exhibit D: Knock-Knock Jokes
Percentage of Helpfulness: 50%
Broken pencil, who?
Never mind, it’s pointless.
Evie and John are All-Stars at complicating the story and when they had the exchange written above, I knew it was either a clue or a distraction. Evie has unexplained naked jaunts through the woods. Her personality fluctuates between assertive/sexy teen to humble and adorable daughter. Are these all pointless details?
John, her father, is a whole different sack of confusing cats. He hears crickets. He’s been to jail for attempted murder, but we don’t know who. He also feels like it is his duty to police the community for unlikable characters with 90s earrings.
I appreciate their knock knock joke. Some of the “clues” in this show are broken pencils. They are pointless and you can’t be certain if they are useful until you investigate further. The Leftovers keeps you grasping at straws, clues and broken pencils and I’m completely fine with that, as long as I see the fruits of my frustration in the end.
Other potential clues include:
-The fact that all of the books at The Murphy household are biographies. Seems odd.
-Dr. Goodheart is too extravagant of a name for him to only appear in one episode
-When does John’s son ever bring back the Tupperware? That was nice stuff
– The fact that a casual goat slaughter is last on my list says something. I’m not sure what.
By Matt Shorr on ©October 07th, 2015 @ 10:01am
You read Funkhouser, which means you are a man/woman of discriminating tastes, accustomed to the finer things in cinema. If I asked you, “what would you most like to see out of Hollywood in the next few years?” Would you say, “another Transformers movie”? I doubt that .5% would. Even then, I doubt that that 1 out of 200 would have said, “another four Transformers movies!” Actually, I take that back immediately. If you said you did want another Transformers movies, I suspect you’d be cool with four.
(Note: the headline and a sentence in the article state that four new Transformers movies are planned, while another sentence, unless it has been changed by the time you read this, says, “…the fifth through ninth Transformers movies will be released over the next 10 years.” Installments five through nine would be five movies, not four. If true, this would have been even worse news, but CNN reports four. Further proof that anything that touches the Transformers movies, even Huffington Post articles, becomes dumber.)
How is this possible? HOW?! Ok, we know how this is possible. Money. $3.8 billion worldwide in sweet, sweet ducats for the first (gulp) four. Transformers: Age of Extinction grossed $320 million in China alone. (Listen, China: if you stop selling us your worthless crap, we’ll stop selling you ours.) It’s telling that Hasbro, the toy company that owns Transformers, announced the next four first. Not Paramount Pictures or the director—a toy company. This whole franchise has been about sharting out saleable movies, not good–or often even watchable–movies. Yeah yeah, I know making movies is about making money, and I don’t begrudge anyone that. But can you at least try, Paramount/Michael Bay/writers? Maybe if the first four had tried to be more than just eye candy rather than muddled, confusing, quickly deteriorating sequels, they could have grossed four or five billion. They’re just rubbing our faces in it now. The arc of the Transformers movie universe is short, and it bends toward suck.
Alright, I’ll try to be a little even-handed here. I ain’t gonna lie: I dug the first Transformers movie (2007). Eye-popping. Fantastic effects. Fun story line. Even the acting was passable. My wife, who’s not a huge fan of that kind of movie and whom I somehow tricked into seeing it, said, “wow. Those effects were amazing. I kind of liked it.” I’ve actually watched it a few times since then. It even led us to watch Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen two years later. Wow, indeed, but for slightly different reasons. (I will go to my grave asserting that Megan Fox was completely serviceable in the first two movies.)
Then another two years later came Transformers: Dark of the Moon, aka Transformers: The First One Without Megan Fox and the Last One with Shya Luhboof. I really can’t remember what happened in this one except buildings getting knocked over and Shaiaia Layberf looking flustered. I’m a bit surprised Michael Bay made this glorified Victoria’s Secret commercial with explosions and big machines since he actually made a Victoria’s Secret commercial with explosions and big machines and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and no words a year before this.
And then there’s 2014’s Transformers: Age of Extinction, the one where Mark Wahlberg woke up in a panic realizing he forgot to pay his mortgage for the month and thus accepted Michael Bay’s offer for temporary work. Personally, I felt that T:AoE committed the cardinal sin of being kind of…boring. This was on Netflix a while back, and I got 45 minutes in and turned it off because the mail came or I got an interesting email regarding refinance offers or I got hungry or something. I haven’t yet finished it. Are you all with me on this one? I don’t care about daddy-daughter relationship dynamics or her rebellious trysts with her X-Games reject boyfriend. If I’m watching a Transformers movie, I want constant, ridiculous action. Remember, we’re not asking for Citizen Kane, but we expect something we can feel OK about spending $10 or 165 minutes (!) on. Damn, Bay, I thought we understood each other.
So four more movies, with the plots already mapped out. What? What grand, transformative epic could possibly be spelled out over the next four Transformers: Something After the Colon movies? This is getting as bad as the last several Terminator movies. Our fault, really. They’ll stop making them when we stop watching them.
Last week we learned more about the budding bromance between Tyler Ulis and Isaiah Briscoe with Tyler’s piece on “Getting to Know the 2015-1206 Kentucky Wildcats” . Only time will tell how this bromance will blossom, but bromances are becoming somewhat of a theme at UK these days. This isn’t even Ulis’ first venture into the realm of bromance, having displayed one of the best UK bromances in recent history with Devin Booker. The “La Familia” mindset around UK basketball in the Calipari era has allowed fans to witness a lot of great bromances in many different styles and forms. Here we examine the best UK bromances of Cal’s tenure and their pop culture equivalent.
Devin Booker-Tyler Ulis/Maverick-Goose Top Gun-
Just as Mav and Goose went into Top Gun and started shaking things up, so too did Ulis and Booker. They came together to the best basketball school in the nation and quickly made names for themselves. Like Goose, Ulis is the wing-man to Booker’s Mav. On the court Ulis set up Booker so he could take shots. On the other hand Booker owned a level of swag on the court and fans quickly knew this guy was more than meets the eye. Throughout the season, especially during Booker’s shooting slump, they held each other up and helped energize the rest of the team, just like Mav and Goose did at the Top Gun Academy. I imagine there are a lot of ladies out there that wouldn’t mind seeing them play shirtless beach volleyball as well. Unfortunately, just like Mav and Goose, Booker and Ulis were split up too soon. Ulis set up many assists for the smooth shooting Booker on the court, anybody know if this ever happened on campus?
Jarrod Polson-Kyle Wiltjer/Doug and Steve Butabi- Night at the Roxbury–
Like the brothers from Roxbury Polson and Wiltjer oozed cool, at least they did as far as they were concerned. Not everybody got on board with the WBA, but they didn’t care. They did their thing and brought BBN along for the ride. The 2012 season never reached the level everybody wanted, and neither did Roxbury for that matter. In each case the respective bromances provided some memorable moments in otherwise forgettable endeavors. It also seems very likely that at some point during their time together, Polson and Wiltjer head bobbed in the car while listening to Haddaway’s “What is Love”.
Alex Poythress-Andrew Harrison/Woody and Buzz- Toy Story-
There are many similarities when you compare Alex and Andrew’s bromance to that of Woody and Buzz. There were some rocky moments during their time together, including a certain Yahoo! Sports version of Sid trying to rip them apart. When Andrew came in there was a perception that he was somewhat aloof and not a team player, much like Buzz. The elder statesman (as far as Cal’s teams to this point went), Alex, was there for Andrew as he went through his growing pains and they formed one of the strongest bonds on the team just like Woody did for Buzz. Over their two years together there were many ups and downs and through it all they were there for each other. Andrew and Alex became the leaders of their group, which includes when they founded the Smash Brothers group, which helped propel the Cats to a 38-0 start despite Alex’s injury. I have no evidence of it, but I hope at some point while playing they listened to Randy Newman singing “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”.
John Wall-Demarcus Cousins/Robin Hood-Little John Robin Hood-
Before Robin Hood and Little John came on the scene, Sherwood Forest was a nightmare. Prince John and the Sheriff of Nottingham were unfairly taxing people and locking up little rabbit families in prison. Times were tough. Robin Hood and Little John came in and led the way to a brighter tomorrow with an awesome mix of skill and personality. Robin Hood and Wall shared many attributes. Both were adept at steals and assists while also showcasing a flare for dramatic shots. They also both had swagger and fought for their respective causes. Cousins and Little John also shared many similarities. Both provided the size, strength, and overall muscle to the operation. They were also clever at getting into the minds of their opponents while also being big old teddy bears at heart. Like Sherwood Forest before Robin Hood and Little John, BBN was in a dark place until Wall and Cousins showed up. Even in their NBA days Wall and Cousins have maintained the close relationship they started at UK. Oo de lally oo de lally, golly what a day.
John Calipari-John Robic/Danny Ocean-Rusty Ryan Ocean’s 11,12,13
They’re smooth, they’re in control, they’re good at recruiting, and they keep coming back for more. There are some obvious similarities between these bromances. Cal has Danny’s smooth recruiting pitch and “aim big” mentality. Robic, like Ryan in the Oceans movies, is more of a background character who keeps everything in order and makes sure the plan is running smoothly. Also true of both bromances, they’re together for the long haul. Even the background plots are similar. Just like Ryan waited for Danny to get out of jail before attempting the big heist, Robic waited for Cal to come back from the NBA before shooting for the biggest job in college basketball. Together these duos have put together some of the best teams to make Vegas sweat. I also like to imagine that as the 2015 recruiting class was winding down Cal and Robic had a moment similar to this one between Ocean and Ryan:
Amongst the many constant elements from seasons 2-5 of The Walking Dead (things like existential crises, speeches about humanity, bang bang walker, boredom, etc.), the most artistic was the predilection of the show to let Beth Greene sing people to sleep. Right up until her death in the middle of season 5, Beth (played by Emily Kinney) would sing to anyone who would listen. This included songs like the Celtic traditional “The Parting Glass” and a real butchering of the Tom Waits song, “Hold On.” (I’m biased here, Tom Waits is my favorite. All covers of his music are sub-par.)
It turns out, not surprisingly, that Emily Kinney was a “singer-songwriter” in real life and, it just so happens, has released her first full-length album entitled “This is War” a week before the sixth season premiere of her former show. Showcasing considerably lighter material than a nihilistic show like The Walking Dead, Kinney seems to do her best to fit into the space occupied by artists like Hannah Montana-era Miley Cyrus or fellow actresses Hailee Steinfeld and Zooey Deschanel.
The further you get into the album, though, the stranger and more subversive it gets lyrically. Underneath the sheen of the candy pop production values and her light manic-pixie vocals is a cascade of references to drugs, drinking, sex, and a hedonistic sounding life that would make Hedonismbot proud. Kinney references herself as a ‘fighter’ multiple times, but what she’s fighting for sounds pretty crazy.
The lead single from the album is ‘This is War’ and, if you listen to the song above, you’ll get a pretty good sense of what every song on the album sounds like. If you dig this sound, like an After Dark Avril Lavigne, you’ll probably dig this CD. The real pleasure to be had here, in my opinion, is in the weird things that she sings.
In “Birthday Cake” she sings about an overwhelming desire to get married. A couple songs later she’s apparently abandoned this notion in lieu of a booty call, one where you don’t really need to tell her you’re coming; she’s left the door unlocked and is on the bed, just come on in. She references “bruises” and “scratches” more than once, and the combination of words and candied tunage make you wonder what happened to her on The Walking Dead. This music is what a Pumpkin Spice Latte would listen to while reading 50 Shades of Grey.
The best part of the whole thing is the two song stretch from “Berkeley’s Breathing” to “Michael.” In addition to the strange “we keep our doors at night unlocked” copulation mantra, you get a keen sense from the whole thing that Kinney has named her hoo-ha “Berkeley.” Some reader can correct me if I heard that wrong, but if she did indeed name her lady parts, that might be the best celebrity body part nicknaming since James Westfall and Dr. Kenneth Noisewater.
Let’s get this out there: This is not great music. But it is just weird enough to be interesting. Listening to the whole album, you might zone out and not notice that the track has changed, a lot of this is interchangeable. The strange content, and any story you can make up relating it to Beth’s run on The Walking Dead, are really what draw you in–I imagine that Darryl & Beth Shippers might actually get a lot out of that last bit. And, as trashy as this is as pop music, it does provide us with one really important lesson. Don’t ever date Emily Kinney. Thanks for that This is War.
Hello, friends. How are you? What have you been up to? Hey, why aren’t you talking? Hello? Friend? Wait a minute this IS A MANNEQUIN DRESSED AS YOU. Oh, there you are! Ha! You got me. I totally fell for it. Good one. Where did you get a mannequin?
Friends, I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that the line for Big Blue Madness tickets is in up and running and Tent City is in full force. If you’ve never been to Tent City, it’s kind of like Bonnaroo for the types of people you might see at your local barber shop. You have to get there early to get in line or you’re sunk — and getting a good place in line isn’t easy. That’s why it’s fortunate, then, that the hip new app Airbnb has begun to list open tent spaces in Tent City for those seeking accommodations. If you’re not familiar with Airbnb, it essentially allows you rent a room, a house, a space or just a bed for the night from someone who has an extra one open, and for a predetermined fee. But what spaces are available on Airbnb for Tent City 2014? And how are the reviews? Let’s look at some potential candidates in a piece we’ll call Airbnb Reviews from Tent City, shall we, and see if there are any deals out there? Enjoy, friends, and I’ll see you here next week.
Orange Tent, Northwest Corner
About this listing:
Spacious mylar tent sleeps three, offers moon flap and vented windows. Easy access in and out, light and airy.
Nearest Restroom: 45 feet
“Not bad, close to Qdoba”
by Marion P.
Linda and Tad were great hosts; they had Nutri-Grain bars and Capri-Suns for when we needed a snack and they really made us feel at home. Comfortable, warm. Will be back. Four stars.
Peaceful Oasis in Tent City, Close to Memorial
About this listing: Large, comfortable four-person dome tent, 63 square feet, with fiberglass poles and WeatherTec moisture repellent system.
Check-in time: 2:00 pm
“Great tent except for Gary”
by Jennifer H.
Was recommended to this tent by friends. Very nice tent but host Gary kept trying to hold my hand. Woke in the middle of the night to him watching me sleep; insisted on calling the tent “Smoochville” and trying to kiss me as he claimed to be the “Mayor of Smoochville.” Good tickets not worth this. Some underwear may still be missing. Avoid at all costs.
Great Spot for Superfans, Center of Tent City
About this listing: True Blue fans host other Wildcat supporters in six-person tent with zippered doors and cushioned tarp floor. Wind-resistent walls/roof.
Accepts Credit Cards?: Yes
Cancellation policy: 24 hour notice
“Perfect for Willie Cauley-Stein fans”
by Charles O.
Debra and Steve seemed really cool at first, big fans of Willie Cauley-Stein; later in the evening they started showing me pictures they drew of Willie as a half-man, half-dragon and reading fan fiction about him as a space wizard in love with a human woman named “Moonwolf” (clearly supposed to be Debra). When they told me they’d pay me $5,000 if I kidnapped him I called a friend to come pick me up. They are keeping my deposit and I’m okay with that.
Luxury Camping Above-Ground
About this listing: Heavy-duty polymer material, rainfly, metal pole support, sky-vue window
Minimum Stay: 1 night
“Wayne Just Tried to Kill Me”
by Brad M.
Can somebody please tell the police I’m in the back of a truck tent and my host wayne just told me tried to give me a WILDCATS 2014 tattoo with a paperclip and when I refused he said he was going to murder me i convinced him to let me have time to write this review and im using it as my message for help im behind the papa johns please somebody help me two stars will not use this location again
Compact and Cozy
About this listing: Petite turnkey tent with great Memorial Coliseum view; friendly host.
“This Tent is for a Dog”
by Lawrence P.
Do not be fooled by the photo; this is a tent made for a dog. The picture is of a small dog, not a regular size tent with just a very large dog, like I thought. It is a very misleading picture and if you are a normal-sized human this is not the tent for you. The dog is very cute, however. And the view of Memorial is nice.That part is accurate.
De-stress and relax in peace!
About this listing: Woven polymer material, rain/wind resistant
“What is this thing?”
(no stars) by Shane T.
Too small. I want my money back. Body got cold during night. I better get great tickets for this. Next year will be getting in line early, with my own tent.
Originally posted September 19, 2014.
Reposting today because it’s one of my all-time favorite Tomlin pieces. And because, ya know, Tent City is going on right now.
“This Tent is for a Dog” will never not be funny to me.
The Tent City Daily Newsletter
October 1, 5:30 pm
TENT CITY AT FULL CAPACITY
If you are receiving this handout, congratulations! You are one of the 585 occupied tents at 2015’s Big Blue Madness Ticket Campout Tent City (BBMTCTC)! This daily update is to help keep some order over the next few days as the volume of people can sometimes lead to miscommunication or misunderstanding. Please take the time to peruse this handout when you receive it to keep yourself up to speed on the goings-on during your stay here in Tent City.
FOOD DISTRIBUTION TIMES/LOCATIONS
It’s important to eat while in Tent City to keep up your strength and immune systems. Please note the following distribution times for donated items.
Northeast Corner– 7 pm: Three pizzas (Papa Johns), first come first serve.
Mid-Tent-City– 8:15 pm: Grilled Hot Dogs/Chips, limit one per person.
East Wall, Memorial Coliseum – 9:05 pm: One half-eaten whopper, possible fries.
Southwest end of Basketball Courts – 10:16 pm: approx. 7-10 gummi bears, licked.
MARK HAS LOST HIS HACKEYSACK
Lost: One aqua/red hackeysack, printed with “Horde Tour 1996.” If found, please see Mark.
SOMEONE POOPED BEHIND THE TREE
While the line for the portable toilets can often become long, there’s no excuse for relieving one’s self in areas outside of this designated location. PLEASE if you see something, say something. This is a self-policing matter for now but action will be taken for those responsible. You know Carol, from the blue tent? Really nice? With the glasses? She stepped in it. Pooping behind the tree is not cool.
COUNCIL MEETING NOTES
During the Wednesday session of the Tent City Council held last night, members voted 14-10 to allow repaving of zones two and three to begin immediately. Also, registered voters living in Zone One will now vote at the green tent with the beige accents and no longer at the yellow tent with the red stripe. Redistricting maps are available at the orange tent with the brown top, ask for John. Gary Wolcomb addressed the Council concerning appropriate hours for Drake lyrics. Council closed with the Tent City Elementary School Choir performing “God Bless the USA.” Thanks to all who attended.
–Be my John Robic? Me: wearing a UK hat, sweatshirt, jeans, sneakers. You: wearing a UK hat, sweatshirt, jeans, sneakers. Passed you sometime yesterday. Would love to have you on my bench for a championship season of love. Call #4583
–Frenemies? You: Pushed me to the ground and stole my spot. Me: stabbed you in the eye with a tentpole. You: threw a Yeti cooler at my head and possibly broke my clavicle. Me: blacked out as blood pooled all over my shirt and the sirens of an ambulance arrived. Discharged this afternoon and back for more good times with you. Call #9585
JOBS DOWN 30% FROM WEDNESDAY
A poll released this morning suggests that Tent City employment is down nearly 30% from Wednesday evening, possibly owing to the shutdown of the bootleg Luke Bryan CD ring and Matt Sullivan running out of weed. Candidates for the Tent City Presidential Race on Friday night have weighed in, roundly promising to bring new jobs to Tent City in the forms of decorative UK sweater knitting, various Kentucky-themed candies and the manufacturing of little horses on the ends of pencils.
WALL TO BEGIN CONSTRUCTION
As approved by vote yesterday at 1:30 pm the dividing wall meant to keep Euclid residents from entering Tent City will begin construction tonight. Please see John in the orange tent for your mandated Tent City citizenship cards by 8:00 am tomorrow, anyone without a mandated Tent City citizenship card will be forced into the True Blue button mines until proof can be attained. Also, all people between the ages of 17-30 are required by law to sign up for the draft. Remember: Be the difference. Join the Tent City Navy Today.
DAILY LOTTERY TO BE HELD AT 3:00
Today’s daily lottery drawing will be held at 3:00 in Tent City Square. Please gather in an orderly line and draw your slips. As usual, if you draw the slip with the black spot, you will be stoned to death in front of your neighbors. That’s just how it’s always been here in Tent City. Remember, don’t poop behind the tree!
I tend to write about what I like. It’s difficult to write about what I don’t enjoy and regard as total rubbish. I’m a glass half full kind of person (except for the trash. It’s half empty. I can always find more room in that receptacle.) Last week, my husband and I watched the premiere of The Muppets on ABC. We loved it. We rewatched it the next night just to re-live the moment Zoot (the saxophone playing muppet in Rowlf’s band) confuses the production meeting for an AA meeting.
I looked forward to sharing this show with you all here at Funkhouser. Like a good pop culture Sherpa, I did my research. I wanted to make sure I was not guiding the flock straight off the cliff. Turns out my concerns were correct. My husband and I have terrible comedic taste. Apparently all of the Internet regards the Muppets as a “perverted” manipulation of a childhood favorite. As Exhibited in the following articles:
– “ABC’s sordid prostitution of the once-sweet Muppets”
–“Muppet Show gets adult with infidelity, drugs, and Spamela Hamderson… how did the Muppet Show get so adult?” *I mainly added this one for the Spamela Hamderson reference
People are salty. Instead of enjoying Miss Piggy’s jokes about plastic surgery, disserenters seemed to focus on the loss of innocence from our felted friends. But, here’s the thing, I don’t think my instincts are incorrect. The muppets aren’t yours. You don’t own them and your opinions don’t influence their creative evolution. I understand that the nostalgia for Miss Piggy and Kermit is strong, but it’s OK if they evolve and change. It is stifling to assume that just because a show is part of your childhood, it should be confined to childish premises. (It is also important to point out that The Muppets aren’t THAT sordid and sassy. It’s not like they are on HBO after dark or anything.)
Instead of writing the story about how Miss Piggy is finally America’s first successful female late night talk show host, writers find joy in exacerbating their outrage. For example, in the NY Post’s angsty review of the show (see above list) Julie Gunlock argues the most infuriating logical fallacy, the hasty generalization. Gunlock argues, “What’s next? Kermit deals with drug addiction, AIDS, gender reassignment surgery? Perhaps Miss Piggy (or Kermit’s new girlfriend) should deal with infertility. Or let’s all have a laugh riot while one of them visits an abortion clinic.”
Goodness. Slow your roll, Gunlock. It’s all in good fun. Kermit’s jokes about break-ups and office conflicts are meant for people who have dealt with break-ups and office conflicts AND grew up watching The Muppet Show. Kids today don’t need The Muppets they have Doc McStuffins and whatever Yo Gabba Gabba is. There is enough earnest television for them. I think it’s OK for the muppets to grow up a little bit.
If not, it’s not the end of the world. Your childhood is still intact and your life will go on.
Would you like to know the best way to tell that this review is truthful? Because I kind of liked Scream Queens, and — full disclosure — I absolutely cannot stand show runner Ryan Murphy or anything he does. I find Glee to be insufferable and silly; I find American Horror Story to be hamfisted and over-Gothic. I generally feel like Ryan Murphy most of the time a.) thinks he’s cute, b.) thinks he’s clever, or c.) thinks he’s doing something really important. Your thoughts may differ, but I’m not a fan of Murphy, though you completely my be (and if you are an Emmy voter, you clearly are) and I just want to put it out there up front, because of how I’m going to start the next paragraph.
Fox’s comedy-horror hybrid Scream Queens is not terrible. In fact it’s kind of fun, despite a lot of glaring problems. I’m going to keep watching it, and I’d go so far as to recommend you check it out as well because it has some potential.
There are a lot of things I don’t like about Scream Queens and a lot of things I do like about it; so where would you like me to start? Okay. I do love that Scream Queens is an effective comedy-horror take that actually works — especially since currently anything labeled “comedy-horror” turns out to be a terrible, terrible mess (Bad Milo, Hell Baby, anything starring a Wayans). Scream Queens has a lot of great jokes in it and, likewise, some fairly brutal murders as well. The central plotline centers upon the beleaguered Chanel, president of the snotty Kappa Kappa Tau sorority and generally horrible human being, working her way through another year of school while dealing with various murders popping up all around her due to a devil-masked slasher on the loose on campus. That’s pretty much it, so far. There are a number of subplots but we don’t need to go into those right now; none of them have really panned out into anything yet.
The good news is that some of the dialogue is pretty strong (I found a bon mot referring to someone as “Pissy Spacek” to be particularly enjoyable), and the central tone of the show — a throwback to both Scream-era horror and the slasher flicks of the eighties — to be agreeable; the soundtrack largely consists of eighties-music covers and horror homage easter eggs are to be found by the truckful. The horror, largely, is sound as well — as I mentioned earlier, some first-and-second-episode murders, involving a deep-frier, self-tanning and a riding lawnmower, are particularly creative and gruesome. At one point I mused aloud to myself “I’ve probably paid for worse entire horror movies than this pilot episode,” and I’ll stand by it. It’s creative and inventive (so far), and though it makes a huge play to the high school crowd, it’s engaging enough for anyone to watch for a few episodes or until we see how this experiment is gonna go. Jamie Lee Curtis as well makes an appearance as the Dean of Students, a cameo that is…well, okay, it’s not subtle whatsoever.
Of course, this being a Ryan Murphy endeavor, there are similarly some things I’m not crazy about: some of the African-American characters are pretty broadly-drawn and the overall concept owes a LOT to the movie Heathers; I hope the creators of that film are receiving some mighty royalties (one scene, featuring human-head croquet, damn near rips it off completely). It’s also extremely clear that Ryan Murphy didn’t spend a lot of time in sorority or fraternity houses in college but rather watched a ton of movies about them in the 1980’s, as he characterizes almost all Greeks as exactly what you’d presume — shallow and ridiculous. For someone who has spent so much of his career breaking down stereotypes of gay people, he certainly seems to be just fine generalizing all over people he doesn’t care for. It’s all fine, though, as the pomposity of these characters, strangely, adds to the charm (a meat-headed BMOC named “Chad Radwell,” played by Glen Powell, threatens to steal the show entirely).
Is Scream Queens perfect? Oh no. No no no no no. Not even close. Is Scream Queens a fun diversion and, alternately, a show which is not about a type of police person in Las Vegas/Los Angeles/New Orleans? Yes. It’s easily one of the more creative new pilots of 2015 and I’ll give it that. It’s the kind of show that at any week could suddenly pull the wrong lever and lose you completely, and you have to know that going in, but until then I’m going to give Ryan Murphy the benefit of the doubt for once. Will I finish out the Scream Queens season? Given what I’ve seen, I’m going to give myself a 30% chance of that. Not great odds, but Ryan Murphy has me so far, and that’s at least a step in the right direction. So let’s see what happens.
We are well into the throes of fall. The pumpkin spice craze will soon give way to pumpkin carving, chilly weather will become cold weather, and as we are all aware, thanks to clan Stark, winter is coming. October is one of my favorite months. We still get a little mix of nice weather, football is in full swing, basketball is getting started, and HALLOWEEN! I’m 29 years old, but I still love Halloween. The candy and costumes are great, but my favorite part of Halloween are scary movies. I brought this up a few weeks ago in my Wes Craven post, and I emphasize it now; I’m a big fan of most tv shows and movies, but scary movies hold a special place in my heart. This time of year there are a bunch of scary movie on tv, from ABC Family’s 13 Nights of Halloween to AMC’s Halloween marathons. Those are fine, but they’re inadequate samplings of scary movies. Besides, most scary movies aren’t meant to be watched on tv, the FCC knows how to take all the fun out of them. I want to make sure you have your best scary movie viewing experience this October, so I’ve made a list of 30 scary movies to watch. That’s one for each viewing day in October (yes I know there are 31 days, but you will be watching the UK-Tennessee game on Halloween night so you’re good there). I’ve broken these down into five categories for your organizational pleasure. Please know this isn’t an exhaustive list or a “best of” list. One of those will likely come later. This is just a primer to give you some excellent options to start your scary movie journey. Enjoy!
Family Scary Movies These are movies which you can enjoy with the kids, or if you’re new to the scary movie scene. These probably won’t give you nightmares, but there will be a couple of scares.
Monster Squad (1987)
Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)
The Ghost and Mr. Chicken (1966)
Hocus Pocus (1993)- I grew up with this movie so I have a soft spot for it. It’s got a good mix of funny and ridiculous with just enough creepy. The song Sarah Jessica Parker sings is haunting.
Addams Family (1991)– The cast is awesome. Raul Julia and Christopher Lloyd shine as the primary characters in this tale of family and macabre. There are a bunch of reasons for the whole family to watch this movie, but if I could narrow them all down to one word, it’d be this: Mamushka!
The Witches (1990)
Slasher Movies– These movies are built around a simple concept, serial killer is on the loose with a knife or other sharp weapon used to (you guessed it) slash people. Known as much for their gore as their scares, slasher movies are Halloween staples and should be viewed by those who like jumping in their seats. To my knowledge Kordell Stewart does not appear in any of the following films.
Halloween (1978)- The original, the best. Everything about this movie is perfect. If you haven’t seen it, watch it. If you have seen it, watch it.
Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
Friday the 13th Part III (1982)
Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
Psycho (1960)- Alfred Hitchcock’s classic should be an October staple for every scary movie marathon. It has a broad appeal, as it is as much psychological horror as it is slasher horror.
Paranormal/Supernatural– Ghosts, demons, and magic are the building blocks of these scary movies. These movies usually have a slow build up, during which your nerves become frayed and tension rises. By the climax of these movies your nerves are train wrecks and the slightest disturbance around you will freak you out. Good times indeed.
Paranormal Activity (2007)- There are a lot of found footage and demon possession movies out there now, but Paranormal did it best. This movie took what Blair Witch did, made it better, and spawned a billion sequels which means it has earned its spot among the scary movie elite.
Cabin in the Woods (2012)- This movie could easily fit into almost any other category of scary movie (except the family friendly one). This is a modern horror movie classic which uses many of the classic horror movie tropes and creates an original story.
The Ring (2002)
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
The Exorcist (1973)
Realistic Scary Movies– These are the movies which scare me the most. These movies don’t have unkillable monsters or otherwordly circumstances. The essence of these movies is that they could happen. The scary circumstances surrounding this type of movie are based in reality so, theoretically, they could happen to you.
The Strangers (2008)- One of the creepiest movies I’ve seen which features one of the scariest lines I’ve heard in a horror movie. When the masked figures (below) are asked why they did what they did there response was simple…”because you were home.” Is no place safe? I’ve seen this movie twice, and just can’t bring myself to watch it again.
The Descent (2005)
American Psycho (2000)
Cape Fear (1991)- Robert DeNiro’s turn as a released convict who seeks vengeance on his defense attorney who failed to keep him out of prison is disturbing. On the outside he could be any random person you meet, but not so deep down is a monster within. It’s terrifying.
Creature Features– Dracula, Frankenstein, the Wolf Man. These are the most basic tenants of scary movies, but are in many cases the most effective. These movies utilize monsters, zombies, aliens, and other types of ne’er-do-well creatures out for blood and destruction.
The Mummy (1932)- Boris Karloff is absolutely unnerving. The story is sound and the effects are minimal, but Karloff’s performance will have you watching cartoons before you go to bed.
Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
The Evil Dead (1981)
The Thing (1982)
Alien (1979)– The original movie which introduced the world to the Xenomorph. This is not just a really good scary movie, but a really good movie in general.
By Richmond Bramblet on ©September 29th, 2015 @ 8:30am
One week. We are one week away from the debut of Funkhouser’s new game show, Listicuffs. Today, we bring you the unveiling of the eight KSR personalities that will be participating in our trivia list competition.
If you missed the introduction video, you can click here to see what Listicuffs is all about. Simply, eight KSR personalities will compete in head to head matches to see who can name more items off of our trivia lists (e.g. “Top 10 Best Selling Breakfast Cereals of 2014”). They will go back and forth in each round until a list is cleared, or one person gets three strikes. The contestant who has the most correct answers when either of those two things happen, will win the round. First person to win two rounds wins the competition and advances to the next match.
Take a look at the video below, then hit us up @funkhouserksr and use the hashtag #Listicuffs to let us know who you think is going to win and become the first ever Funkhouser Listicuffs Champion.
By Richmond Bramblet on ©September 28th, 2015 @ 5:06pm
Less than 24 hours ahead of the official announcement of the eight contestants in Funkhouser’s new game show, Listicuffs, there was one certain purple dinosaur who just couldn’t wait before taking a shot at his future opponent:
— FakeBarneyKSR (@FakeBarneyKSR) September 28, 2015
The recently engaged Fake Barney also engaged in some trash talking this afternoon, aiming his jabs at Funkhouser editor, Christopher Tomlin. I have a feeling, that if Barney’s not careful, there is going to be some not so nice prose written about him in something akin to “Tracy Is a Slut Chili”
Check back here tomorrow to see the remaining four contestants to be announced for Listicuffs, which will air its first episode on Tuesday, October 6th.
This weekend in Austin was the first weekend of the 2015 Fantastic Fest, the largest genre film festival in the US. Fantastic Fest shows a slew of upcoming and classic horror, sci-fi, and action movies, and there have been some truly bizarre and great movies shown. World premieres at Fantastic Fest have included Zombieland, There Will Be Blood, Apocalypto, and a ton of others.
After the first weekend, here are trailers for some of the most talked about entries:
All of the buzz Sunday night was about this movie, which looks like a properly gory English horror movie. It’s been getting rave reviews since showing at Sundance, garnering even more comparisons (which people seem fond of doing) to Wicker Man or The Shining.
Probably the highest profile movie to screen this weekend, Guillermo del Toro’s (Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth, Pacific Rim) new film is getting great almost-reviews, as critics agreed not to write too much about it until closer to it’s wide release. From the sound of this recap, it should be a good one!
By C.M. Tomlin on ©September 25th, 2015 @ 3:00pm
“It’s completely changed. Just the atmosphere, the game day energy in our first two home games has been incredible. Totally different than when I first arrived.”
–Kentucky Head Coach Mark Stoops on fan support this season vs. past seasons
Mark Stoops is right, you know. The atmosphere surrounding Kentucky football is, ever so slowly, beginning to change from one of perennial fear and gloom to one of hope and optimism. Why, just the other day I saw I man taking a window decal of Calvin from “Calvin & Hobbes” peeing on a UK football helmet OFF his Silverado. That’s progress. That’s change. It’s proof you need? Then proof I’ll provide. Just look at the difference between the current positivity surrounding Kentucky football versus some low points over the past years. I think we can all agree it’s a great time to be a UK Football fan right now.
The 2015 UK Fan: Watches games on the edge of his or her seat, leaping to celebrate with every caught pass and first down.
The 1994 UK Fan: Watched games on the edge of his seat, biting his nails and hoping for something – anything – to change the momentum of the team for the better.
The 2015 UK Fan: Wakes each morning with an enthusiasm in his heart that UK football is once again growing into a strong and proud program.
The 1994 UK Fan: Woke each morning cynical and dismissive of a team and coaching staff that seemed to continually disappoint.
The 2015 UK Fan: Watches Friday Night Lights with friends and family, hoping it’s an encouraging precursor to a successful season for the Kentucky Wildcats.
The 1996 UK Fan: Watched Independence Day curled in a fetal position, hoping that aliens would destroy the earth before the second half of the Tennessee game resumed.
The 2015 UK Fan: Hears former quarterback Jared Lorenzen commenting on current games and remembers how much he or she enjoyed watching Lorenzen play in the early 2000s.
The 2006 UK Fan: Heard Bill Curry commenting on college football games on ESPN and instinctively doused himself in flames, leaping out the window to the street below to stop the memories searing his or her brain.
The 2015 UK Fan: Greets his fellow fans with cheerful “Go Cats!” to which an energetic “Go Cats!” is returned and high-fives are exchanged.
The 2012 UK Fan: Greets his fellow fans with a plea of “Will you drive this screwdriver into the base of my spine so I can’t walk back to my seat and watch the rest of this Vanderbilt Game?” to which a response of “I can’t see to do that because I already poked my own eyes out in the first half to avoid seeing any more of this horrible carnage” is returned and sorrowful wails are exchanged.
The 2015 UK Fan: Why not [Kentucky]?
The 1994 UK Fan: Why not [throw myself in front of this speeding tree removal truck]?
The 2015 UK Fan: Puts a UK sign in his yard to support the team.
The 1994 UK Fan: Puts garbage in his tire fire because he lives in a nightmarish hellscape of football.
The 2015 UK Fan: Is a very happy, well-adjusted man or woman who loves family and enjoys the bounty that a rich, fruitful life can yield. There’s always hope.
The 1994 UK Fan: Is incapable of true human joy and is wholly unable to love or be loved by another human being. Maybe, someday, in the 2000s, he can learn to live again. Maybe fans will be joyful anew. Maybe Commonwealth Stadium will get a renovation. Maybe.
Y2K will probably destroy everything. But there’s always hope.
Say, this guy coaching at Nordonia High School looks alright.
By Richmond Bramblet on ©September 24th, 2015 @ 9:30am
So as usual, things go astray sometimes when Ryan Lemond is involved. Yesterday, I went and hung out at the Horseshoe Casino for the KSR show, in the empty ballroom with Matt and Ryan. When I arrived, Ryan leaned over to me and said, “You know, I hear I’m the odds-on favorite to win the game show”. I, of course, felt the need to tweet this out, forgetting I had set Tuesday, September 29th to announce all the contestants for Listicuffs:
So, @ryanlemond just said he is the odds on favorite to win the Listicuffs Championship. Let's hope he's better at this than FanDuel…
— Funkhouser KSR (@FunkhouserKSR) September 23, 2015
One fellow contestant took umbrage with Lemond’s declaration of premature victory, and also took to Twitter in response:
Bull!!! I will beat Lemond! https://t.co/xSkWQVZMdr
— J.D. Shelburne (@JDSHELBURNE) September 24, 2015
That’s right, country music artist and Kentucky boy, J.D. Shelburne has thrown his hat into the Listicuffs arena. The quarterfinal match has been set between Ryan Lemond and J.D. Shelburne, in what is sure to be a heated contest. The episode schedule has not been set yet, but we look forward to seeing these two square off. Ryan just better hope there are no math or fantasy football lists.
We have six more contestants that will be revealed next Tuesday, unless anyone else takes to throwing punches on social media. If you missed it, be sure to check out the Listicuffs Introduction video here.