Everybody knows who Wonder Woman is (she’s a lawyer who fights crime by night!) and a lot of people have heard of the Wonder Twins. Though they fought side by side (or did they? Who cares, right?) in the wonderful world of cartoons, we will now have them face off against each other for the simple reason that the word “Wonder” is in both of their names.
Also, they’re all brunettes.
On to the battle!
Physicality. Wonder Woman is an Amazonian goddess-like being with the superpower of keeping that skimpy costume up.
The Wonder Twins are aliens who look really cool when Alex Ross draws them.
Winner? Wonder Woman.
Has a lame real-world origin? Ignoring their fictional origin stories for the time being, the Wonder Twins were first introduced to superhero-loving children (and possibly some adults who watched Super Friends, but, seriously, you guys, why?) in the 1970s in cartoon form. Like all characters created specifically for superhero cartoons, they kind of sucked. Wonder Woman was created by William Moulton Marston, a feminist who wanted a Superman-like character, only prettier, to show that women were equal (if not superior to men). On a related note, he was a masochist (citation needed). Also, she was the secretary for the Justice League and stalked some guy. So, goal? Not reached. Winner? Wonder Woman, because the man just kept her down.
Cooler form of transportation? Wonder Woman has an invisible jet, which I imagine would be pretty hard to fly, like, “I wish I could tell if I was out of fuel, but my jet is invisible, so I can’t read the instrument panels.”
I think the Wonder Twins mostly walked, although one time there was this:
Winner? The Wonder Twins, because that is the most awesome thing I have ever seen.
Has cooler superpowers? Wonder Woman has the superpower to kick your ass. Also, a magic lasso. Which isn’t really a superpower so much as a magical tool, but whatever. It makes you tell the truth! Useful! The Wonder Twins have the power to touch each other (ewwww) and say “Wonder Twin Powers Activate” and turn into things. Like ice-bicycle riding octopi. That power would be cool, but they make it seem so lame. Winner? The lady who has the superpower to kick your ass always wins. Wonder Woman.
Has a stupid pet? I don’t think Wonder Woman even likes animals. But the Wonder Twins do! They have a blue “space monkey” named Gleek. I think they just told everybody it was a space monkey, and dyed a regular monkey blue. Winner? The Wonder Twins.
Better alter ego? When Wonder Woman first leaves her Amazonian island to travel to the world of men (a smellier world, with slightly less lesbian pornography), she takes on the identity of Diana Prince, a military nurse. That’s a great alter ego, if you have nursing skills. We’ll just assume that Wonder Woman does. The Wonder Twins throw on some blonde wigs and tell everyone they’re Swedish. Winner? Wonder Woman, because, Swedish? Really?
Appeared on Smallville? Who hasn’t appeared on Smallville at this point, right? Oh. Wonder Woman? Really? (Lois in a Wonder Woman costume doesn’t count.) Winner? Wonder Twins.
Really? Yeah, that seems pretty silly.
Overall winner? Wonder Woman edges out the Wonder Twins to reign triumphant.
So, from what I gather from the Water for Elephants trailer, Robert Pattinson is going to take a test and then he doesn’t take a test because there was a car accident. Probably it was his parents that were killed, but maybe it was his Aunt May and his Uncle Ben, and if he’d only tripped the criminal on his way to school to take the test, they’d still be alive and he’d never have to learn that with great power comes great responsibility.
So Robert Pattinson doesn’t take the test, but instead goes to see dead people on a table, and then pukes (or cries? It looked like he was puking to me) in the street, and then closes a door behind him and then jumps on a train, dropping his luggage because he’s just not coordinated enough to run and hold something. Which makes it kind of ironic that he then goes on to join the circus, because it seems like running and holding something would be a skill you would need for that. But not really ironic, because that’s not really how you would use the word, so more like just weird and stupid. Good luck at the circus, Robert Pattinson!
Then he meets a “beautiful woman,” a.k.a. Reese Witherspoon, the reason I put “beautiful woman” in quotes, because I’ve always found her more “cute” than “beautiful,” but what do I know? And thus begins a love story between them. Ooooh, I’m sorry, a forbidden love story, because she’s already married to the ringmaster or the circus owner or “the boss” or whatever, who’s obviously abusive, because they can’t have one of these stories where the main characters are jerks who break up a perfectly fine marriage.
An elephant does a headstand at one point. That looks cool and all, but I really wish we’d stop making elephants do headstands. I hope that during that part in the movie where the animals revolt and scare the crowds away, while the scene was filmed, the animals actually broke a few trainers’ toes or spines because ha-ha, stop molesting animals, you jerks.
(I’m sorry, but I just hate circuses with animals. I prefer the all-human kind, because at least humans can decide whether they want to join the circus or not and aren’t just whipped into doing headstands. As far as I know.)
Moving right along, tragic love story, “you’re a beautiful woman and you deserve a beautiful life,” like, it’s a good thing I wasn’t writing the script knowing the star would be Reese Witherspoon, because “you’re a cute woman and you deserve a cute life” is much less dramatic.
And then, they grab hands and prepare to jump off a train, so hopefully Robert Pattinson has already told her how hard it is for him to hold things while running, or boy, is she going to be in for a surprise.
In conclusion, I have never read the book.
So, the last couple of weeks, I’ve watched the revamped Law & Order: LA. Sure, I’ve been slightly drunk at the time (because why wouldn’t I be?), but I don’t think it’s all that bad. I never saw the unvamped version of it, so I can’t really say if it’s an improvement or not.
And I would never say that it’s better than old-school Law & Order back in its glory days, because that’s just silly. Nothing is better than old-school Law & Order in its glory days.
It’s just too bad they had to kill off Skeet Ulrich, I guess, but I can’t really say that I’ve ever been a big fan of the guy, so it could’ve been worse. It could’ve been Alfred Molina.
Also, I always thought Molina was Greek, but they’ve got him playing a Latino? I mean, I get that in Hollywood and in television, you don’t actually have to be a race to play a character of that race, but maybe he is Latino? I guess I don’t care enough to find out.
(But if someone else cares, they can totally tell me in the comments, that’s cool.)
And the cases are interesting enough, like last night, they killed a Marine, and you thought it was her boyfriend, but then it turned out to be a bunch of corrupt government officials, so that’s good. (Even though I’m getting the impression they’re planning to really rely on Alfred Molina to carry this show, what with the way they have featured him heavily in all three episodes I’ve seen, and seem to be planning to do so for next week’s episode too.)
Also, does anybody else find Corey Stoll really, really hot?
There are many things I’m not doing this weekend, like celebrating getting a new job or writing a play, and chief among them is watching Scream 4.
(I mean, maybe I’ll write a play, but it’s just not very likely.)
Watching Scream 4 is at the top of my list of things I’m not doing this weekend. (Right below that is flipping off my boss, because I don’t have a new job.)
But man, Scream 4. Why is there one? Sure, it’s probably because you can make horror movies forever, which is why there are 718 Halloweens, but I thought Scream was about breaking the rules and not whatever.
So, yeah, definitely not watching Scream 4 this weekend. Also not buying a wardrobe for my new job.
(But maybe I’ll write a play. But probably not.)
Why, in all the words in the English language, is there no word that rhymes with orange?
How is that possible? Why has nobody remedied this state of affairs by Shakespearing up a word? (Like I just did, by using Shakespeare as a verb.)
Just think of how much poetry has been ruined, all for the lack of a word that rhymes with orange!
(Well, ruined harder.)
So I was recently re-reading Preacher, and I thought how similar Jesse Custer’s “Word of God” power is to the “Push” power of, you know, whatsisname. Firestarter’s dad. From Firestarter. And then I thought, God, what is his name? And then I thought that I didn’t really care that much.
So, on to the epic battle of Jesse Custer and that one guy!
Physicality. So Jesse Custer’s all dark-haired and tall and good-looking, even if, at one point, people wanted to cast Ben Affleck to portray him, I think we can all agree that Ben’s not hideous or anything.
Firestarter’s dad had awesome ’80s hair. Winner? Jesse Custer.
Can convince you to do whatever he says? Yeah, if either of these guys is actually trying, they have the psychic ability to make you do whatever they say. It’s like the power of hypnotizing people, but awesome. Winner? A tie.
Can convince you to do whatever he says without suffering mini-strokes or brain aneurisms or whatever? Andy McGee (I totally had to learn his name to do an image search) has the tragic side effect of his superpower is killing him. That sucks. It would be like being Superman, except you got eye cancer every time you used your laser vision.
Or being Wolverine, and being invulnerable makes you die! (Gods, the irony!) Or being Batman, and awesomeness kills! Jesse Custer suffers from no such side effects, and doesn’t even die when he is killed. Winner? Jesse Custer.
Faces a more powerful enemy? Firestarter’s dad’s enemy is the government. (What? Just ’cause I learned his name doesn’t mean I can remember it 5 seconds later.) The government is a very powerful enemy. Especially when they’ve got crazy scientists and sociopathic assassins on their side. You’d think Firestarter’s dad would have this in the bag, right? Boom! You’re wrong. Jesse Custer is trying to defeat God. And not like in some hypothetical, bullshit metaphysical way. He actually meets God face to face several times and tries to call him on his bullshit. Another enemy he faces is a secret group that, like, owns the government, which automatically makes them more powerful than the government. Also, he’s got the Terminator-esque Saint of Killers to face, so, yeah. Those are some powerful enemies. Winner? Jesse Custer.
Has a tragic back story? Andy McGee’s tragic back story is that the government totally murdered his psychic wife and now he and his adorable little pyrokinetic daughter are on the run. That’s sad, but it doesn’t beat Jesse Custer’s tragic back story of how his father was murdered by his gran’ma and her evil cohorts, and he thought his mother was too, but then it turned out she wasn’t actually murdered, just shot in the brains and left to be eaten by alligators (all they got was an arm), and then they killed his dog and his best friend and put him in a coffin in the swamp for days at a time, and then they made him become a preacher and threatened to murder his girlfriend. Oh, and then they did murder his girlfriend. (It’s OK, though. God brought her back to life.) *Sniff* That is so goddamn tragic. Winner? Jesse Custer.
Has an adorable, superpowerful daughter? Firestarter’s dad has an adorable, superpowerful daughter! Jesse Custer, as far as I know, does not. Winner? Firestarter’s dad. (I was feeling bad for him.)
Has a cooler best friend? I don’t know if Firestarter’s dad has a best friend. He probably can’t trust anybody, what with being on the run from the government and all. But Jesse Custer has had two best friends: the first being a one-eyed mutant inbred freak and the second being a vampire back in the days before everybody and their plain sister was dating vampires. Winner? Jesse Custer.
Came back to life? Poor Firestarter and her dad. When he died, he died for good. Kaput, the end. When Jesse Custer died, God brought him back to life. Also, God saved him when he fell out of a plane, but then he ripped Jesse’s eye out, so that one was kind of a wash. Meh. Winner? Jesse Custer.
Because I’m feeling bad about the trouncing served up to Firestarter’s dad, overall winner? Jesse “Preacherman” Custer.
The Arthur remake.
Why did someone find that necessary? Why did someone find the fame of Russell Brand necessary?
And why didn’t I recognize Jennifer Garner? I was all like, I know I recognize that brunette, but how? Could someone save Helen Mirren? Why am I writing everything in the form of questions again????
But enough about Arthur and how I hope it tanks so Russell Brand will please, please, please just go away forever, how about Hanna?
Doesn’t it look awesome? I love child assassins. As a fictional concept, not as a reality. (Seriously, if any of you are raising your child to become the perfect assassin, there is something wrong with you and someone needs to take your child away, quickly, and give it lots and lots of hugs and possibly hot chocolate.)
Plus isn’t Saoirse Ronan just beautifully eerie, with her pale hair and blue eyes? You can’t look at that girl and not think she isn’t planning to kill you. (Or is a ghost, I guess, but I never saw The Lovely Bones.)
And the fight scenes look suitably brutal, and Eric Bana doesn’t suck or anything and, whee!, Cate Blanchett!
So, yeah, let’s all pretend that of the two movies with people’s names as titles opening this weekend, one of them doesn’t exist and go see Hanna instead.
Because throat punching.
Was that too much of a stretch for a Star Trek joke? It was, wasn’t it.
Anyway, nerds of a certain age will remember Denise Crosby as the taser-wielding Lt. Tasha Yar from Star Trek: The Next Generation. You younger nerds can get off my lawn.
But what happened to Ms. Crosby after she left ST:TNG for greener pastures? Where did she goooooooo?
Well, according to IMDB, Denise Crosby forms part of the extensive Crosby family dynasty, a dynasty of which I was heretofore unaware. (Did I use heretofore correctly? Will anyone know if I didn’t?) The daughter of entertainer Dennis Crosby (yeah, I’ve never heard of him before now either), her first role was as an uncredited party guest in 10.
A year later, she got a role on Days of Our Lives. In 1982, it was on to a role in Trail of the Pink Panther, which I don’t think you should bother watching because Peter Sellers was dead by then.
The early ’80s also brought loads of fun stuff, like the TV movie Cocaine: One Man’s Seduction, like don’t you feel bad for the people who have to come up with these titles? “Look, Bob, we need to make it clear this is a C-List made-for-TV flick. What’ve ya got?”
Of course, you’ve got 1983′s The Man Who Loved Women, which should have been alternately titled Which is Every Guy Except for the Gay Ones and 1985′s Malice in Wonderland (made for TV movie).
The late ’80s brought a guest role on L.A. Law, which was a pretty big deal at the time, and also a role as the wife in Pet Sematary, which I totally didn’t realize was her.
Also in the late 1980s, she was in Star Trek: The Next Generation, which I already mentioned. She left after 22 episodes, because her character had been kind of pushed to the background, but came back in later years to play her character’s daughter and also alternate reality or time-travel versions of Tasha Yar. I had already stopped watching at that point, so I really don’t remember this at all.
The early ’90s brought a lot of guest roles on TV series I’ve never heard of and don’t feel like listing, except for The Adventures of Brisco County Jr., because it had Bruce Campbell in it.
She was also in the Red Shoe Diaries, just like David Duchovny and Sheryl Lee!
Later, she had a role on Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Diagnosis Murder and Baywatch, which is great. In 1998, she had a role in a movie called Divorce: A Contemporary Western, proving that titles are hard no matter what the genre.
Speaking of David Duchovny, she also had a guest part on the X-Files after it had started sucking, so no wonder I never noticed. She was also on JAG and Judging Amy and Crossing Jordan, but I never saw those shows, so I don’t care.
This is getting a little long here, because apparently Denise Crosby has been working steadily for quiet a while, and I just didn’t notice, so we’ll wrap things up by saying she’s had roles on Dexter, Mad Men, Prison Break and most recently Southland, so I guess if I wanted to know what Denise Crosby was up to lately, I would watch more television.
So there you go. Tasha Yar is not only still acting, she is, in fact, flourishing.
If he wasn’t so darn cute, and so floppy-haired, and tall, and nerdish, then I wouldn’t have watched Tangled this weekend.
And liked it.
(God, I know, that doesn’t sound like me at all, does it?)
Now, don’t get me wrong, this definitely isn’t replacing Spirited Away in my lexicon of Best! Animated! Films! Ever!, but it’s not horrible or anything.
In fact, it’s kind of … good.
Because what you’ve got is a lot of Zachary Levi talking, and Zachary Levi singing, and there’s some other people too, but who cares, because Zachary Levi.
OK, right, fine, Tangled is Disney’s take on the Rapunzel fairy tale, except instead of the witch discovering that some horny prince has been visiting her captive, this Rapunzel escapes, using her hair like a lasso and stuff, and also she has magical healing powers. Through her hair. And it’s not a prince, it’s Zachary Levi, which is close enough, and they go off on a madcap adventure and of course they fall in love and of course the evil witch falls to her horrible death as a hideous hag.
There’s some cute songs and some jokes and a running gag with frying pans and, really, I’m not sure I could have tolerated it except for one thing.
With the proliferation of fantastical creatures out there in the modern dating world, it’s sometimes hard to know exactly what kind of weirdo you’ve got. But never fear: I’m here to help. This guide will help you discern if you are dating a Hobbit or just a short guy.
1. Does he have big, hairy feet?
2. Does he seem unwilling to give you a ring?
3. Does he spend a lot of quality time with his long-haired hippie friends?
4. Do you live on Middle Earth?
5. Does he have a cute little upturned nose?
6. When he’s not hanging out with hippies, is he pretty much unseparable from his BFF?
7. Does he pity, small, weak, hideously ugly creatures?
8. Can only he defeat a great evil?
9. Does he have an odd name, like “Bilbo” or “Frodo” or “Samwise”?
10. I mentioned the big, ugly, hairy feet, right?
Well, there. I certainly assume that answered all your questions.
Now, please enjoy the final movement of Johan de Miej’s Lord of the Rings Symphony. (It’s called Hobbits.)