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What was Right and What went Wrong in The Last Jedi

What was Right and What went Wrong in The Last Jedi

The most recent installment of one of the greatest movie series of all times, Star Wars, may be the most polarizing movie in the series. It has either gotten great reviews and people love it, or people say it is worse than the Phantom Menace. I am the type who believes this movie is great and I think people should cut Rian Johnson a little bit of slack, but it does have its flaws.  Now before I get into this, a spoiler Alert is definitely in effect for this piece, as I will address the what went right and wrong, in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

Good: The Porgs

One of the biggest complaint in this movie is the amount of Porgs that are in this movie. The Porgs were obviously a marketing technique that Disney used to appeal to children, mainly, but it could appeal to many others. Like me for instance, I think the porgs are great and provide a nice comical relief. But some people were not a fan of the porgs, as they could be overwhelming at times, but according to Jake Lunt Davies, the creative designer for Star Wars said there were too many puffins on the island they shot the film from. So, Rian Johnson had a creative idea to create Porgs. This is probably an unpopular opinion, but I thought the Porgs were great.

Bad: Leia surviving space

As we all know, the world lost Carrie Fisher almost a year ago, so everyone thought that she would be killed off (for lack of better terms) in this movie. Boy were we wrong. In fact, we got swerved multiple times and the fact that Leia is still alive in the Star Wars universe blows my mind. I know it will be said to lose Leia, but it has to be done at some point and they had the perfect opportunity to do it in the last Jedi. The fact she’s alive isn’t really the big issue here though, it’s how she is still alive. Leia survived floating in space and that’s unheard of. I realize that she is connected with the force, but it seems kind of outlandish that she can cheat death by floating back to the ship. I would have justified her living if she would have played a significant role if she returned, but she didn’t do anything that important.

Good: Not revealing Rey’s parents

People are under the impression we will never know anything about Rey’s parents and that she really did come from nothing. This befuddles me, because they are going off the word of Kylo Ren, who would obviously lie as a sith lord to bring Rey to the dark side. I think it’s almost a certainty that we find out about Rey’s parents in the next movie, but who that is, is beyond me. I am under the belief that she may be a Kenobi, the granddaughter of Obi Wan in fact. That would still leave a question about her parents unless Obi Wan just raised some junkies, but who knows.

Bad: The Luke/ Kylo Ren situation

This is easily my biggest gripe about this film, because it makes no sense whatsoever and is totally disconnected from the prior movies. I understand that we needed a cause for Ben Solo to become to Kylo Ren, but having a story that has Luke try to kill a conflicted Ben Solo IN HIS SLEEP is terrible. At what point did it make sense that Luke saw the conflict in Darth Vader, the evilest man in the galaxy, in the middle of battle, and could turn Vader. But he tried to kill a conflicted apprentice of his, in Kylo’s sleep? Makes no sense. This tweet sums it up best.

Good: The Elite Praetorian Guards

In Star Wars we have been a custom to the underlying villains playing an insignificant role in the movies. Whether it was the droids in the prequels or the clones in the original trilogy, we’ve gotten used to these antagonists looking very weak. But in the fight scene where Rey and Kylo team up to kill the guards, they looked extremely strong. Making Rey and Kylo (two of the most powerful people in the galaxy) pull out all the stops to defeat them. Not only does making them strong look good for them, it helps solidify that Kylo and Rey could be some of the strongest characters we’ve ever seen in Star Wars.

Bad: Snoke

Well this was dumb. For two years many people wondered, who is Snoke? Where is he from? How is he evil? What makes him significant? Well, all those questions weren’t answered, in fact they weren’t even touched. They killed Snoke and left us with no indication as to how he was significant. Unbelievably bad move.

Good: Gender parity

Its’s 2017 and gender equality is one of the biggest topics in the world right now. With Disney being one of the most progressive companies in the world it was no surprise that they would have women play a massive role in their Star Wars movies. We saw it in the force awakens and we saw more of it in the last Jedi. Rey is easily shoplifting herself as a Star Wars fan favorite because she is a total bad ass and it’s great to see her take the lead role in this film. Now, they may have gone a little overboard with the guys making boneheaded mistakes, only to have women save them. But it’s great to see Rey as more than a damsel in distress and reserving that role for someone like Poe or Finn.

Bad: Holdo not telling Poe the plan

This movie was the longest in the Star Wars saga, but it seemed a bit to long. They could have easily cut out 40 minutes of this film if Holdo just would have told plan in the first place. Not only that, her not telling Poe resulted in a large portion of the resistance being killed. I understand every plot needs a conflict, but this one was so laughably easy to fix.

Kentucky Thrones Radio: A BIG Announcement

After a few months away, Nick Roush and T.J Walker are back to talk about their favorite television show.  More importantly, they’re here to make a special announcement you can’t afford to miss.  Come for the fantastic, life-changing news, stay for the discussion on…

—  Why the books are a great way to kill time before GoT comes back in 2019.

—  Something new you should add to your daily routine in 2018.

—  Crootin’ on the basketball and football front.

—  The biggest surprises from the early Kentucky basketball season.

—  A surprisingly awesome new way to start your day.

—  Terry Touchdown SZN.

—  Why you shouldn’t be scared of Northwestern nerds in the Music City Bowl.

—  Why you should prepare to hear more from T.J. and Nick in the near future.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

The Funkhouser Situation E16: It’s a Trap!


Star Wars and Christmas have converged to create the ultimate podcast.  Lee Cruse has returned from a Disney Star Wars experience to talk to Chris Tomlin about The Last Jedi and share their favorite Christmas flicks. Highlights for this week’s fantastic Funkhouser Situation include…

—  Why they love The Big Sick and Ray Romano.

—  Tomlin’s Christmas wish is granted; what does Lee want for Christmas?

—  The Top 10 Grossing Christmas Movies since 1980.

—  Lee has more problems with young people.

—  A traumatic/exciting experience on a Disney ride.

—  How Lee would fix Star Wars and who is at fault for ruining it.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

WWE: Clash of Champions Recap

WWE: Clash of Champions Recap


We are less than 24 hours removed from WWE’s last pay-per-view of 2017, Smackdown’s Clash of Champions. Going in, I believe everybody had extremely low expectations for this PPV, as it just seemed to be a filler show before the Royal Rumble. But the blue brand actually came through and put on a pretty solid PPV. From great story work, solid opening and closing matches, and a possible retirement, Clash of Champions over achieved. Here is a recap of last night’s PPV.

US Championship Match: Baron Corbin (c) vs Bobby Roode vs Dolph Ziggler

This match was a great opener for the show as it was able to draw the audience in for a PPV that had low expectations in the first place. Even earning a “this is awesome chant” the match was fast pace and a false finish galore, from Bobby Roode kicking out of Baron Corbin’s deep six, or Bobby kicking out of Dolph Ziggler’s DDT. It felt like the glorious Bobby Roode was going to win his first title on WWE’s main roster. But WWE pulled a major surprise and gave the title to the man with no gimmick, Dolph Ziggler, as Ziggler hit a beautiful Zig Zag while Baron was trying to hit End of Days on Roode. This is kind of a head scratcher because many people believe he will leave the company in 2018. Maybe one last title push? Grade: B+

Fatal 4-way Tag Team Championship Match: The Uso’s (c) vs The New Day vs Rusev and Aiden English vs Chad Gable and Shelton Benjamin

I thought this match was going to be a mess from the beginning and we would just see the Uso’s and New Day once again steal the tag team spotlight, to further solidify they are two of the best tag teams in all of wrestling right now. But we got a pleasant surprise as they made Rusev and English look strong, along with a good performance from Chad Gable. It was apparent from the entrances of the match how over Rusev is to the WWE crowd, so it was nice to see WWE give him a little momentum during this match. It seemed like all four teams played an equal part in the match and it even looked the Rusev and English or Gable and Benjamin was going to win the tag titles. But the New Day was able to get the jo done once again to walk out of Boston Smackdown’s Tag Team Champions. This run the Uso’s have been on this year has been nothing short of phenomenal and it is easily their best work in the company. They are so fun to watch. Grade: B+

Women’s Lumberjack Match for the WWE Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair (c) vs Natalya

This was easily going to be the least entertaining match of the night, only for the fact everyone already knew the outcome as Charlotte made Natalya tap in the middle of the ring to retain. The only story work that could’ve came from this match would have been the Riott squad destroying everybody involved in that match, and we didn’t even get that. The most entertaining part of the match was when Carmella almost cashed in her Money in the Bank during the match, only to have it squandered by the lumberjacks. After the match, Natalya cut a promo that many would be considered a hell turn. Talking to the WWE audience she said, “I’m turning my back on you”, but considering she is already a heel, this has me questioning her future in the WWE as she could possibly be turning her back and walking away? Either way, just keep her out of the title picture please. Grade: D-

The Bludgeon Brothers vs Breezango

There’s not much to say about this match, it was a squash. Bludgeon brothers made lightwork of Breezango to further solidify Harper and Rowan are in the best shape of their lives. Moving on. Grade: F

Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn vs Randy Orton and Shinsuke Nakamura with Special Guest Referees Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon

If Owens and Zayn would have lost they would have been fired from WWE. This match was more about story work and less about wrestling. With that said there were some cool spots, such as Kevin Owens performing a frog splash onto a table and roll up sequence which had Shane and Bryan alternating counts. The best part of the match was Daniel Bryan as he may have played the biggest role. There have been many rumors circulating that he may leave the WWE if they don’t let him wrestle anytime soon, and boy did they tease him wrestling again. From the stare down with Randy Orton, to the shoving match with Shane, we may see Daniel Bryan in the ring again. Daniel Bryan would end up dishing out a quick 1-2-3 on a Sami Zayn roll up to let Kevin and Sami keep their jobs. The biggest question is, was this Daniel Bryan’s heel turn? Grade: B+

WWE Championship Match: AJ Styles (c) vs Jinder Mahal

The main event saw the phenomenal AJ Styles take on The Modern-Day Maharaja and KSR’s favorite wrestler, Jinder Mahal, battle for WWE’s most coveted prize. Many people thought this would be Jinder’s swan song in the main event picture and in a sense, it was as AJ Styles made him tap with the calf crusher, but WWE did a really good job of keeping Jinder relevant in the match. This match was booked almost like the Brock Lesnar AJ Styles match at Survivor Series as Jinder used his physical advantage to dominate early. Only for AJ to use his athleticism to win the match and retain as champion. It is safe to say Jinder won’t be in the title picture anytime soon, but what started off as a terrible push, we have seen Jinder improve immensely to show he belongs in the WWE. Grade: A-

The Aaron Torres Sports Podcast E4: Taylor Hicks

In Episode 4, the Twitter beef of the century is finally settled, as Aaron Torres welcomes former American Idol winner Taylor Hicks to the show. But before Hicks joins, Aaron welcomes his buddy Nick Coffey to discuss the topics of the day, like…

—  The Ball brothers trip to Lithuania.

—  How Rick Pitino and Tom Jurich blocked the NBA to Louisville.

—  Why Star Wars fans are the worst.

—  Hicks explains why he was so upset with Aaron’s comments about Collin Sexton.

—  Hicks shares the advice he received from Nick Saban.

—  What Hicks’ life has been like post-American Idol, and it involves living in Alaska.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to the “Aaron Torres Sports Podcast” feed on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

The Funkhouser Situation E14: Top 50 Comedies of All-Time, Part 2

The Funkhouser Situation returns to wrap up Chris Tomlin and Lee Cruse’s Top 50 Comedies of All-Time Countdown.  Did they forget yours in the first episode?  Probably, but that just means they’ll be talking about it on this week’s episode.  Highlights:

—  They share their favorite Will Ferrell movies.

—  Who is on the Mount Rushmore of comedy families.

—  They try to explain how they chose the No. 1 comedy of all-time.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

Adult Observations for the 25-Year-Old Home Alone 2

Adult Observations for the 25-Year-Old Home Alone 2

2017 marks the silver anniversary for Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.  The great milestone prompted the Plaza Hotel to offer a real life Kevin McAllister experience.  Cane’s decided to deviate from selling delicious chicken fingers and sell a “Kevin Plush Puppy.”  But more importantly, the anniversary has prompted many to re-watch the Christmastime favorite. What I’m saying is… it’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Like many movies, watching a movie with your 31-year-old eyes is way different than watching a movie with your 6-year-old eyes.  Below are my adult observation for Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.

  1. This Evergreen Meme:

I’ve watched enough House Hunters to know that this house isn’t modestly priced. And even if the writers dared to give the McAllisters a profession that would attempt to pay this mortgage, I’m not sure if I’d find any believable.  (That is except for founders of McAllister’s Deli.)

  1. Creepy Uncle Frank

While Uncle Frank provided Kevin with the “creepy little pervert” soundbite for his TalkBoy, the fact that he left the door open while showering is disturbing.  As we have established, the large house is bursting at the seams with family members.  Uncle Frank is too loose for my taste and frankly has potential to be a creepy little pervert as well.

  1. Kevin’s Fake Solo

At the Christmas recital, Kevin sings “Christmas Tree O Christmas Tree.” It’s a real banger. Now that my musical tastes have matured, it’s painful obvious that Macaulay Culkin is clearly not singing these words. His solo is fake news.

  1. Buzz’s Mildly Offensive Nicknames

Buzz is a tough older brother.  We know this because he plays pranks on Kevin and peppers him with put-downs.  In 2017, all of his nicknames for Kevin seem mildly offensive.  I’m not sure what a “trout sniffer” is, but I’m almost positive it’s not appropriate.

  1. One Half of Pete & Pete

No matter how much you loved Nickelodeon’s The Adventures of Pete and Pete, the show isn’t sticky.  It’s one of your favorites that is easy to forget.  Luckily, Pete #1, Michael C. Maronna, plays a small part in Home Alone 2 to help you remember.

  1. Rare Cinematic Air

Unlike most sequels, Home Alone 2 is as good, if not better than the original.  It is even hard to identify which memorable quotes go with which film.  Which came first, “Merry Christmas Ya Filthy Animal” or “Buzz, your girlfriend….woof.”?

  1. Suspended Believably

There comes a point in the movie where you have to put all your skepticism aside.  Yes, child protective services should have been called.  No, Kevin wouldn’t have been allowed on a plane, even in a pre-9/11 world.  But the thing that sticks out as the most disturbing are Kevin’s evil and maniacal booby-traps.  There are nail guns and sand bags and fire! His mind was quick to process and execute extremely wicked and intricate machines designed to inflict pain.

It’s disturbing.

  1. The History! 

As of 2017, only one American President has appeared in the movie.  Here’s to Michael C. Maronna in 2020!

Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes, Danai Gurira as Michonne - The Walking Dead _ Season 8, Episode 8 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

The Walking Dead Mid-Season Review

Hello friends and fans of TWD. My oh my what a season so far, just not for the reasons we were excited about. Heading into All Out War there were subplots from the comic I was intrigued to watch unfold. Ezekiel’s fall into shame after losing his warriors and Shiva. Eugene’s tireless effort to make ammo for the good guys. The behind enemy lines activities of Dwight. What did we get? Well, we did get Ezekiel’s fall, which is well done. However, Eugene being with the Saviors I guess is a long term thing now. Dwight has done a couple of dubious things to help out Rick and the gang. To me this season has been very uneven from the start. Bad writing, music, and lighting aside, the show runners did take a risk in the mid-season finale that at least comes close to what I’ve been wanting from the show. To show viewers that no character is ever truly safe from being served up to the Walkers.


If you had told me before the season started that an original season charcter was going to die, or at least bit by a Walker that will lead to their death, Carl Grimes would’ve been last on the list. I’m being serious as a heart attack when I say this. Robert Kirkman’s plot points in the comic hint at Carl being a leader in the future of the book. I’d put Judith at greater risk of being Walker dinner before Coral. So why did the writers bite Carl in the ribs to take him out? Let us count the possible reasons then talk about the future of the show. As always, I assume you have watched or you wouldn’t be reading this so enter at your own risk.

Chandler Riggs Is Ready To Start His Life

This would be the most obvious answer. Chandler has been with the show over half his life. From the first time he showed up as a little kid running up to his Dad I felt this was the most teflon character in the apocalypse. For Hershel’s sake he gets shot in season 2, has to kill his mom in season 4, loses an eye in season 6, and personally invades the bad guys compound by himself in season 7. He may as well have been Neo in the Matrix. Rick suffers losses from time to time yet comes out ok in the end. Carl gets beat down every other season to the point he’d need therapy every day for the rest of life. However, kids grow up fast. I’ve seen it with my own offspring. One day you’re changing their diapers, the next they’re giving you a speech on the early American colonies. For the comic Carl has stayed young throughout it all, only now coming into his own as a middle teens man. For Chandler this isn’t the case. Life goes on. If this is the reason for Carl getting nipped in the ribs I give him kudos for wanting to move on with his life. However…..

The Writers Wanted Shock Value

I wrote earlier this season that one of the major problems with the show that is hard to get around is the amount of characters. So many plot lines, so little time. Looking at each other in the writing room to plan out season 8 had to be difficult. Do you appease the fans with a straight forward story or throw curveballs? Killing off a major charcter is the easiest way for viewers to stay engaged with the show, but which one has the most impact? I would argue they need to off even more for the show to remain relevant. Carol and Morgan are long gone in the book. Tara, Daryl, the Junkyard gang, and the Oceansiders don’t even exist. A cull of charcters may still be upon us in the second half of the season. The show runners may have simply pointed out that going forward without Carl may be the straw that breaks Rick’s back. To truly push him over the edge. If this is the case then bravo to their boldness.

Appeasing Kirkman’s Ideas

Hear me out on this one. Kirkman has stated on multiple occasions he wanted to do different things in the comics. He wished he hadn’t killed off Shane so quickly and changed Abraham’s death are just two he has spoken about. Maybe killing off Carl was another? For avid readers like myself Carl has reached a point in the comic that mirrors his story on the show. Simply put it is getting stale. When you don’t have much character growth to show you get bored, angry even. Case in point, Roush and T.J. anytime Sam comes on screen in Game of Thrones. It is the same with Carl for myself and Josh Juckett @banterjosh. Chandler was fine as a kid actor yet he didn’t age well. The long hair looks goofy. He has the acting chops of a vanilla wafer. Good luck to him in the future with whatever he decides to do I just hope it is as a director, producer, or even a key grip.

For those of us who are sticking with the show through thick and thin this has been a rough season. It has shown quite a bit more action which I can appreciate. The episodes have seemed as slow as previous seasons. The problem has been the smallest errors are being pushed to the forefront. Dialogue has been Star Wars prequels dry. Editing has been choppy. The close up shots of characters with moody music playing is groan worthy. I just hope they can find solid ground in the second half of the season. Maybe Carl’s death will have a major impact on the story lines. Negan himself should even be bummed out by this development. The show has never been perfect, although season 1 was pretty close. My hope for the future is they can unjump the shark. If not then Season 9 could be the swan song for the survivors of the Walker apocalypse. Until we reconvene in late Febuary I hope you have a Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year. Ta ta

Kennedy’s Wildcat Den closes on UK campus

After nearly 70 years of business, Kennedy’s Wildcat Den will close when the current UK semester ends.

According to general manager Carol Kennedy Behr, daughter of founder Joe Kennedy, “sales have gone down, down, down,” and the store just can’t keep up with online textbook and merchandise purchases any longer.

In an interview with Tom Eblen of the Herald-Leader, Behr said all remaining merchandise will be 40% until doors officially close.

Kennedy’s announced its closing in an email to customers Sunday night, just before final-exam week. Merchandise in the store except textbooks will be marked 40 percent off, Behr said. Rented books must be returned by Dec. 16 and gift cards used by Dec. 22, when the store’s doors close for good. Kennedy’s will continue selling fan merchandise online for a while at

The University of Kentucky will be opening their new $175-million student center this Spring, where the official UK Bookstore will open up.

Eblen reports the most likely replacement for the lot Kennedy’s stands on now will be an expansion of the parking garage right next door.

UK had been trying to acquire the Kennedy’s property for years, Behr said. Plans for the site are unclear, although expansion of UK’s adjacent parking garage seems likely.

End of an era…