Welcome to Run It Back. Each week, S.E. Shepherd brings you a unique look at the best (and worst) in TV, movies, sports, comedy, online video, and life in general. Is there something you’d like S.E. to cover? Hit him up on Twitter @TheSEShepherd.
Is there a better month in Kentucky than October? Brisk weather that’s perfect for sipping bourbon. The changing colors of the leaves. Basketball season gets underway. Watching the ponies run at Keeneland. Coeds deciding how to make “naughty” or “sassy” versions of otherwise benign Halloween costumes. There’s simply nothing like it. Before we kiss September goodbye and dive into what could possibly be the best month of the year, here’s a quick round-up of things from the last few days that mattered to me and might matter to you.
Dagnabbit, Debra! Clyde Got into My Closet Again!
Lifetime, A&E and the History channel have teamed up to produce a mini-series that will tell the “youth gone wild” story of Bonnie and Clyde, with Emile Hirsch playing Clyde Barrow and newcomer Holliday Grainger doing duty as Bonnie Parker. Apparently the show will air over two nights across all three networks (I’m not exactly sure how that works, but whatever). William Hurt and Holly Hunter also are in it, which is too bad because this trailer isn’t good. I mean, not even a little bit. In fact, in a trailer filled with laughable moments, here are the five that stood out the most:
- The scene at the start where Bonnie and Clyde are driving in a car and Clyde tells her he’s always loved her looks like it was shot using the same crappy green-screen set as the old Toonces the Driving Cat sketches on SNL.
- In the graveyard shot, Emile Hirsch’s costume is way too big for his diminutive frame. He looks like a little kid playing dress-up in his daddy’s clothes.
- William Hurt is MAD at that wall! So mad that he gives it a little high-heat, back elbow action. Stupid wall.
- “Don’t mess with Bonnie and Clyde!” Oh, man. I might make that my new ring tone.
- I know he’s supposed to be getting riddled with bullets while he and his lover die in a hail of gunfire, but in that last shot of them in the car, Hirsch looks like he’s doing a little Antoine Walker shoulder-shimmy.
I don’t know about you, but if the entire mini-series is half as hilarious as this trailer, it’s going to be a comedy goldmine. It airs in December, and I can’t wait to tune in.
Zach Galifianakis vs. Justin Bieber
Yesterday saw everyone’s favorite bearded weirdo Zach Galifianakis return to the internet with a new episode of his acclaimed interview series, Between Two Ferns. Zach’s guest this week was living JC Penney’s boys’ section mannequin Justin Bieber. No topic is off-limits in this wide-ranging interview, from Bieber’s three haircuts to his recent adventures in public urination. And Zach doesn’t hold back, going so far as to enact upon young Mr. Bieber a healthy dose of corporal punishment in an attempt to teach him a lesson in humility. It’s as awkward and hilarious as usual. Oh, and if you’re a fan of Nickelodeon’s slime gag, you’ll want to stick around for the ending. You can watch the video over on Funny or Die, where you’ll also find a complete archive of past Ferns episodes.
The recent record-breaking release of Grand Theft Auto V served as the latest reminder that video games have cemented themselves alongside movies, TV and music as one of the mainstream pillars of the big-time, moneymaking pop culture economy in the new millennium. But long before the days of life-like graphics, open worlds and blockbuster game releases, there was the Atari 2600. The console debuted in 1977 and it served as the gateway drug to a life-long video game addiction for countless kids growing up in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The graphics were sparse. The games were often repetitive to the point of absurdity. And the controller was nothing more than a plastic-covered stick and single red button. For those of us who grew up with the system, though, the Atari 2600 will always hold a special place in our hearts.
Over on The Verge, Andrew Webster interviewed some of the artists who designed the iconic artwork featured on the Atari 2600’s cartridges and packaging. From Defender and Night Driver to Super Breakout and Missile Command, the cover art for Atari’s early games was often the best part of the experience. Whereas many of the games consisted of little more than navigating a few roughly animated pixels through a maze, the art adorning the outside of the cartridges often depicted heart-racing scenes set in highly detailed fantasy worlds. If you ever played an old-school Atari, scrolling through the cover art for some of the console’s most famous games will instantly transport you back to your childhood.
MC Serch is About to Get Paid to Peddle Sneakers and Soda Pop
Fans of early 1990s hip-hop will surely remember 3rd Bass, the New York-based rap trio made up of bespectacled heavyweight MC Serch, the pimp-cane-wielding Prime Minister Pete Nice, and DJ Richie Rich. They are best remembered for their anti-Vanilla Ice ode to not selling out, “Pop Goes the Weasel,” which hit the top spot on Billboard’s rap singles charts in 1991; or their first record The Cactus Album which openly dissed everyone from the Beastie Boys to MC Hammer.
MC Serch emerged as the face of the group thanks to his vicious punch lines and surprisingly nimble flow. Even after the members of 3rd Bass went their separate ways, he found a way to build a pretty solid resume for himself. Although Serch is most famous for his career on the mic as a performer — he scored a couple of hits off his solo album Return of the Product, most notably “Here it Comes” — he also executive produced Nas’ album Illmatic (which to this day is widely considered one of the best rap albums of all-time), flexed his acting muscles in Spike Lee’s 2000 film Bamboozled, hosted a couple of rap talent-search reality shows for VH1, and has had a successful career as a radio DJ in Detroit. Despite being mostly forgotten by the general public over the years, I’ve always respected him for keeping it real and earning the respect of the hip-hop community during a period when white rappers were still seen as something of a novelty.
After several years out of the mainstream spotlight, it looks like MC Serch might be ready to make a bit of a comeback. It was reported this week that Serch will be hosting his own syndicated talk show called (what else) Serch. Sadly, the show won’t be an hour-long slam session with Serch and Pete Nice giving fools the Gas Face. Instead, Serch will “use his street smarts and unconventional background to help guests grapple with and resolve their problems.” I’m picturing something along the lines of Dr. Phil meets Scared Straight.
The show will start a four-week test run in January in a handful of major markets. Here’s hoping it gets picked up and is on long enough for Serch to make the turtleneck-and-blazer look popular again:
So THAT’S What He Looks Like
If you have ever played an EA Sports video game, you’ve certainly heard the brand’s iconic intro: “EA Sports. It’s in the game.” But have you ever wondered what the man behind one of the most famous phrases in video games looks like? It turns out his name is Andrew Anthony and sometimes he makes videos with random kids who spot him in the wild.
How crazy is it to hear those words actually come out of a real human being’s mouth? It almost doesn’t seem real, the way he’s able to seamlessly transition from his normal, everyday voice into his almost hyper-real EA Sports voice. I’m not going to lie: People who do voice work for a living kind of creep me out.
That’s it for this week. Whether you’re cheering on the Cats or trying to squeeze one last warm-weather weekend out of the year, do your best to send September out with a bang.