Pop Culture Odds and Ends– Lots of videos edition

Happy Wednesday! The sun is actually shining today, which gives me hope that the rain is behind us for a while. I was so over the dreariness. The good news about all the rain is that it gave me plenty of time to hole up and surf the web in search of pop culture stories to share with you, my dear readers. I found more videos of interest than usual, so this week is more audio/visual heavy than usual. Why read when you can just click a button and watch? Enjoy your biweekly roundup of all things pop!

  • The Dumb and Dumber sequel that would reunite Jim Carey and Jeff Daniels has been dropped by Warner Brothers. Directors Peter and Bobby Farrelly are shopping the project to other companies. Countdown until the inevitable Kickstarter?
  • Congrats to Kate Winslet on her pregnancy. This will be her third child, her first with new husband Ned Rocknroll (still the best name ever).
  • Johnny Depp is FIFTY! How the f*&k did that happen?
  • A new trailer has been released for the next Hobbit movie:


  • Also recently released – a trailer for the newest Woody Allen movie Blue Jasmine. Look – It’s Louis CK!


  • Happy belated birthday to the wonderful Peter Dinklage. He turned 44 yesterday. I could watch this scene of him slapping Joffrey all day long.


  • That was quick – after a solid opening weekend, The Purge is getting a sequel.
  • The guy who plays Hodor (Hodor!) on Game of Thrones is also a DJ.
  • What’s that you say? Baseball and boy bands? You have my attention.


  • Laraine Newman and company nail this Girls parody:


  • Bob Saget couldn’t help but stop by a familiar location while on a trip to San Francisco


  • True Blood returns for its 6th season on Sunday. Here’s to hoping that it’s better than last season; as you may recall, I was not too impressed.


  • The new season of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee drops tomorrow at noon:


I didn’t watch the Tonys – Game of Thrones and Mad Men own my Sunday nights – but looks like I missed a hell of a show.


Note to Seth MacFarlane – THAT is how you host an awards show. Full slate of winners (and the shows that are now impossible to get tickets to) can be found here.

  • Attention all Juggalos – Insane Clown Posse is getting their own show. I’ll admit – the episode of their webseries that I saw was kind of amusing.
  • The band Portugal. The Man scored some familiar faces (if you are a It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia fan) for their newest short:


  • Speaking of It’s Always Sunny – if you ever wondered what the guys were saying backwards in the end credits each season, wonder no more:


  • I love these covers of songs from Bob’s Burgers. This one is by The Magnetic Fields’ Stephin Merritt and it’s great.
  • Looks like I’m planning a trip to DC this fall – An Anchorman exhibit opens at the Newsuem in November.
  • Warner Brothers gave up their rights to Friday the 13th and South Park for a piece of the new Christopher Nolan movie.
  • Samuel L. Jackson reads the iconic “I am the one that knocks” monologue from Breaking Bad. My head just exploded.


  • This is kind of cool: Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” reimagined in different musical styles through the decades:


  • One thing Kanye ain’t lacking is confidence, as evidenced by this New York Times article with the self-proclaimed “visionary.” The most ridiculous quotes are here.
  • The Hollywood Reporter spoke with Scott Thorson (Liberace’s Ex) about HBO’s Behind the Candelabra (a must see – Michael Douglas and Matt Damon are fantastic and you have to see Rob Lowe to believe it).
  • If you missed it, Google had a wonderful Google Doodle earlier this week honoring the late great Maurice Sendak:


  • Look for Alvin and the Chipmunks 4 in 2015. Shows how much I know – I didn’t even know that there had already been 3 movies.
  • Holliday Grainger (The Borgias) has joined the cast of the live action reimagined Cinderella.
  • While waiting for a Green Day concert to start, an Bohemian Rhapsody sing-a-long broke out:


  • A Christmas Story, the Musical returns to New York this holiday season (but not on Broadway).
  • Singer Jon Marco isn’t famous, but he’s trying to make a name for himself with a video that features recreations of several 80s movies. Not so sure about the song, but I’ll give him points for creativity.


As always, we end with the mashups and supercuts:

  • I refuse to tire of these Daft Punk mashups. This one is with moments from the Bill and Ted’s franchise:


  • Sex and the City debuted 15 years ago last week. To celebrate, here is a mashup of all the guest stars on the show (I remember almost none of them).
  • Spoilers abound in this Princess Bride/Game of Thrones mashup, so proceed with caution:


  • Mad Men reacts to the Red Wedding on Game of Thrones (SPOILERS – but seriously – that episode was almost two weeks ago. Catch up already)


  • A supercut of all the fake websites on Arrested Development:


  • A mashup of animals who can’t handle mirrors:


And finally, these supercuts of NBC’s Brian Williams make me giggle uncontrollably. Damn you Fallon – you’ve done it again:

  • Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg’s “Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang”


  • Warren G’s “Regulate:”


  • The pièce de résistance– NWA’s “Straight Outta Compton”


Have a great day!

Maurice Sendak, 1928-2012

“There must be more to life than having everything.”

– Maurice Sendak


Another day, another piece of my childhood gone. Maurice Sendak, renowned children’s author and illustrator, passed away at the age of 83.

Sendak is best known for writing Where The Wild Things Are, which was one of my favorite books growing up. That isn’t all that original. I think Where The Wild Things Are was pretty much standard issue for kids growing up in the 80s and 90s, who then in turn introduced their children to it. I don’t have my own children yet, but I did do a lot of babysitting from age 12 on, so I’ve read Where The Wild Things Are many, many times. And even on heavy rotation, I still enjoyed it every time. The journey that Max takes to the land of the Wild Things after being sent to bed without supper resonates with children of all ages. As a child, who doesn’t dream of a place where all sorts of mischief is allowed? The Wild Things, as conceptualized and drawn by Sendak, are wonderful and terrifying monsters. But more poignant is Max’s realization that being king of the Wild Things isn’t all that isn’t cracked up to be and his longing to return to his mother who, though punishing him, he knows loves him:

And Max, the king of all wild things, was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all.

This sentiment isn’t only for children; who among us, even as adults, doesn’t crave the idea of being with someone that loves them above all others?  It’s the reason that match.com exists.

Though Where The Wild Things Are is Sendak’s best known book, I have a special fondness for a project that he did with Carole King in 1975. They collaborated to adapt some of Sendak’s books, including Chicken Soup With Rice and Alligators All Around into a musical called Really Rosie. While I never saw the play performed, I was a big fan of the 30 minute animated television special that they also produced as part of the project. I went to a lot of programs at the local library when I was a kid, and Really Rosie was one of the films that was shown. I always got so excited when that one was featured.  As a little girl who secretly dreamed of being on stage, though lacking any real talent, I could identify with Sednak’s title character who decided to gather her friends together to tell the story of her life. Carole King was the voice of Rosie, as well as the composer of the music and song, and since the album Tapestry was played a lot in my house, I was probably especially drawn to the special.

What made Sendak so appealing was that not only did he like children, but he respected them. He didn’t think that they needed to necessarily be infantilized or spoken down to.  When it was first released, Where The Wild Things Are was greeted with some controversy because it was feared that it was too dark and scary for children and that it glorified disobedience. Sendak thought that children could handle and process more that they were usually given credit for. When asked about the difference of writing for adults versus writing for children, Sendak said “”I don’t believe that there’s a demarcation. ‘Oh, you mustn’t tell them that. You mustn’t tell them that.’ You tell them anything you want. Just tell them if it’s true. If it’s true, you tell them.”

Recently, Sendak made a hilarious appearance on The Colbert Report, discussing a variety of topics. It is one of the funniest interviews the show has done and I re-watched it many times on my DVR. He is delightfully crotchety and grumpy in the best way possible.  Part one of the interview can be found here, part two can be found here.

Sendak’s last book, My Brother’s Book, will be published posthumously in February. It is hard to believe that this will be the last morsel we get from this creative and innovative mind. His legacy, however, will live on in the future generations of children who read and enjoy his books.