Pop Culture Odds and Ends – Goodbye Pawnee Edition

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Last night, one of my favorite sitcoms ended its run. Parks and Recreation never was a huge hit, but for its loyal fanbase it was one of the funniest and sweetest shows around. Parks and Recreation is the reason that I knew Chris Pratt was eventually going to be a star and brought the awesomeness that is Ron Effing Swanson into my life – not to mention reinforce the comedic genius that is Amy Poehler. When The Office ended its run, I was ready for it to go; that isn’t the case with Parks and Recreation, which has given us some of the funniest episodes in its final season. I’m so sad that we now live in a world without Pawnee, Indiana.

Ironically, I almost gave up on Parks and Recreation. As a political scientist, I was psyched for a show that was based in the world of local government and had high hopes. When the show finally debuted, I just didn’t dig it. That first six episode season was rocky – they hadn’t figured out the Leslie character and she was too close to simply being a female version of Michael Scott. I decided the show just wasn’t for me after that and had to be talked back into watching the second season; one of my friends assured me that the show had found their groove and was vastly improved. I was skeptical, but after his constant badgering I conceded, gave it another look and was instantly smitten. Since then, I haven’t looked back.

So in honor of the end of Parks and Recreation, “treat yo self” to this week’s pop culture round up. You deserve it.

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  • Ron Swanson get the Shepard Fairey treatment:

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On to non-Parks and Recreation related news…….

  • I didn’t watch much of the Red Carpet coverage, but I missed this earlier John Travolta creeper moment:

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  • Conan and Billy Eichner try out Grindr:

 

  • More bloopers from Game of Thrones:

 

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  • Even Jimmy Page thinks these pint sized percussionists rock:

 

  • Colin Firth is rocking a killer stache in True Detective 2:

 

  • A new poster for The Avengers: Age of Ultron:

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  • Who knew Christina Aguilera was so good at impressions?

 

  • The Kimmel School of Perfect Acting:

 

  • Do you want to see a NSFW version of The Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers staring James Van Der Beek and Katee Sackhoff? Of course you do:

 

  • This is from a few weeks ago, but cracked me up – Kid Theater with Michael Keaton:

 

Time for some trailers….

  • The final season of Mad Men:

 

  • Only a few more days until the third season of House of Cards:

 

  • A new teaser for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D:

 

  • The Goldbergs are doing a Ferris Bueller themed episode (including a Charlie Sheen cameo):

 

  • Wayward Pines, the new series from M Night Shyamalan:

 

  • Kristin Wiig in Welcome to Me:

 

  • HBO’s Scientology documentary, Going Clear:

 

  • Mark Ruffalo and Zoe Saldana in Infinity Polar Bear:

 

  • A trailer for Street Fighter V:

 

  • A trailer for a movie about Marshawn Lynch, starring Marshawn Lynch:

 

  • A sneak peek at the new animated short, Frozen Fever:

 

  • Sleater-Kinney teamed up with Bob’s Burgers for their new video:

 

  • Bob Odenkirk was turned into a cake:

 

  • Benji Madden had his wife Cameron Diaz’s name tattooed on his chest. Ah, modern love:

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  • R.I.P. Harris Wittels, executive producer on Parks and Recreation, creator of the term #humblebrag and all around funny guy.

As always, we end with the supercuts and mashups.

  • Frozen meets John Carpenter’s The Thing:

 

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  • Sesame Street parodies House of Cards:

 

  • Sesame Street also took a shot at a Birdman parody:

 

  • A medley of songs from SpongeBob Squarepants:

 

  • A supercut of Danny DeVito’s best moments from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia:

 

  • Warren G and Kenny G got together to perform “Regulate”

 

  • And finally, Limp Bizkit meets Seinfeld:

 

Thanksgiving Hangover

Hopefully everyone had a wonderful holiday; my only regret is that I don’t have any leftovers to snack on today. I could really go for some more mashed potatoes and gravy.

I’m taking it easy today – I’ll have a review for The Imitation Game up on Monday – but didn’t want to leave you completely hanging. One of my new favorite holiday traditions is Rashida Jones dropping by Jimmy Fallon’s show on Thanksgiving. They always do something fun. So take a little break from all the holiday madness and enjoy a little medley of reinvented pop songs:

Lip Sync Battle – The Voice Edition

photo from NBC.com

photo from NBC.com

There’s no other way to say it – yesterday was a tremendously shitty day for me. I had one of those days where nothing really seems to go your way and you wind up questioning your abilities and judgment. It was simply not a great 24 hours and by the time I got home from work last night I was truly and utterly defeated. A pep talk from a friend helped restore some of my confidence, but as I continued my marathon of The Roosevelts I still was all sorts of melancholy.

So, of course, Jimmy Fallon knew exactly what I needed to put a smile temporarily back on my face – a lip sync battle!

I’ve written before about how much I enjoy these segments on The Tonight Show and I’m glad that they are using them sparingly; I don’t know that I would ever actually tire of them, but I like that these bits are an unexpected surprise. Since I’ve been struggling with insomnia all this week due to stress – I’ve managed about 12 hours of sleep over the last 4 days – I’ve been able to watch my late night shows live rather on DVR at a later date, so I was able to experience the awesomeness that is an unexpected lip sync battle first hand. It snapped me out of my wallowing for a bit and was just what the doctor ordered. I don’t watch The Voice regularly and I’m lukewarm at best to Gwen Stefani, but she and Blake Shelton did a fabulous job, so kudos to them. “Call Me Maybe” is a guilty pleasure of mine, so that only increased the awesomeness of this whole endeavor in my opinion. I’m thankful to anything that gives me some reprieve from feeling awful; I’ll even forgive Stefani for her butchering of my pal Colbert’s name at the Emmys after this. Shelton is a regular guest on The Tonight Show and proves that once again he is game for anything.

Check it out for yourself:

 

John Krasinski’s lip sync will always be my favorite because he was first and because I have *ahem* strong feelings for Mr. Krasinski, but Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani were more than admirable combatants. Actually, they have yet to have a lip sync battle that wasn’t great. Let’s hope the streak continues.

Don’t forget…I’m blogging this month to raise awareness and funds for the Children’s Tumor Foundation. If you enjoyed this post or the blog in general, please consider making a donation on the blog’s fundraising page. So much gratitude to those that have already donated – we’ve surpassed my first fundraising goal!