Pop Culture Odds and Ends – May Day Edition

Happy first day of May! While this date used to be commemorated with festivals and May baskets, now it just means that I need to pay my rent, which is decidedly less glamorous. I think we should bring all those celebrations back, if for no other reason I could use a day off from work and it is a gorgeous day outside. I’d even be willing to dance around a Maypole if need be.

While I try to convince my boss that we should be observing this ancient spring festival, kick back and enjoy your bi-weekly roundup of pop culture stories that you might have missed. If you see a story that you think should be included in this feature, please feel free to hit me up on the blog’s Facebook page or tweet me (@AsHeathersWorld). And don’t forget to vote to decide what my summer viewing project will be; the polling sample is small at the moment, but The Good Wife is off to a narrow lead. Finally, a very special welcome to all the new people following the blog – your readership is much appreciated!

Now let’s get our pop culture on!

  • Seth Rogen and FX are teaming up for an animated program about Bigfoot.
  • Check out this jazzy cover version of Beyoncé’s “Crazy in Love” that will be in The Great Gatsby:

 

  • However, the soundtrack also features this horrific cover of Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black.” Beyoncé is fine, but Andre 3000 ruins it:

 

  • Johnny Depp is in talks to star in the big screen adaption of the Broadway musical Into the Woods.
  • The Madonna/Elton John feud has been squashed. This has really been going on a decade?
  • A woman recreated the opening of a bunch of TV shows for her hubby’s birthday:

 

  • More pop culture birthday: a How I Met Your Mother themed party.
  • Mad Men has gone to the dogs:

 

  • After the success of Veronica Mars, Zach Braff has also turned to Kickstarter to fund his new movie. For some reason, this has people all worked up into a tizzy. I know it’s not cool to say, but I actually really liked Garden State, so I’m eager to see this new film.
  • All My Children and One Life to Live have been revived; the soaps started an on-line only run o Monday.

Renewal news:

  • The CW has renewed The Vampire Diaries, Heart of Dixie and Beauty and the Beast. They also picked up The Vampire Diaries spinoff, The Originals.
  • NBC has renewed Parenthood (yay!), Chicago Fire, Revolution, Grimm and Law & Order: SVU.
  • Two and a Half Men will be back, short a half man; Angus T. Jones will not be a regular.
  • Comedy Central has renewed The Jeselnik Offensive and Nathan for You.
  • MTV has renewed Snooki and JWoww and is reviving Nick Cannon Presents Wild n Out.

 

  • Paul Scheer and Will Arnett decided, for unknown reasons, to recreate the Bill Clinton/Arsenio Hall interview (with some creative license):

 

  • Armie Hammer and Tom Cruise are slated to co-star in Guy Richie’s The Man From U.N.C.L.E film remake.
  • Neil Diamond is donating the profits from “Sweet Caroline” the week of the Boston bombings to a charity for the victims.
  • Quentin Tarantino’s car – driven by John Travolta in Pulp Fictionhas been recovered 17 years after it was stolen.
  • This guy nails his Louis CK impression (NSFW):

 

  • This is kind of spectacular: Norman Reedus (Daryl from The Walking Dead) photobombed a Game of Thrones fan picture:

Screen-Shot-2013-04-29-at-11.23.10-AM-650x340

 

  • The Tony nominations were announced. Tom Hanks is closer to getting an EGOT.
  • In honor of the Red Headed Stranger’s 80th birthday, watch Willie Nelson’s “audition tape” for The Hobbit:

 

  • I haven’t played in years, but I was interested to hear a new Grand Theft Auto game is coming out in September. I always enjoyed that game, though I mostly just drove around and wrecked stuff.
  • Watch SNL’s Kate McKinnon do her Ellen DeGeneres impression for Ellen on Ellen:

 

  • Fans of The Simpsons may want to check out this website that encourages artists to reinterpret Homer Simpson.
  • Supervillian speed dating:

 

  • This is hilarious – E.L. James, author of the Fifty Shades of Grey series – is releasing a writing advice journal. Those books were a lot of things, but well written wasn’t one of them.
  • NBC will allegedly be burning off the remaining episodes of the dreadful Do No Harm over the summer.
  • Watch a short film directed by Michael Cera:

 

  • I didn’t make it again this year, but the winners of the Tribeca Film Festival have been announced.
  • Michael Bublé put on an impromptu show in the NYC subway:

 

  • House of Card’s Corey Stoll is attached to a vampire pilot for FX from Carlton Cuse and Guillermo del Toro, based on the del Toro’s book The Strain.
  • A musical Dowton Abbey spoof? Why thank you! (contains spoilers)

 

  • Uproxx created a power ranking of Ted’s girlfriends on How I Met Your Mother. Zoey should have been much lower – she was the worst.

As always, we end with the mashups and supercuts:

  • It’s a quip off between Downton Abbey’s Dowager Countess and Game of Throne’s Lady Olenna
  • Here’s a mashup of trailers for summer 2013 movies:

 

  • The Game of Thrones/Friends mashup (contains GoT spoilers):

 

  • MineKart 64 – Minecraft and Mario Kart 64:

 

  • Statler, Waldorf, & Inglourious Basterds

 

  • This Taylor Swift/Demi Lovto mashup (“I Knew You Had a Heartattack”) is pretty catchy:

 

  • Mad Men and The Simpsons both have done episodes involving Planet of the Apes, so it was only a matter of time before someone put them together:

 

  • An Arnold Schwarzenegger supercut:

 

  • And finally, here is Cookie Monster singing Tom Waits (NSFW). I am embarrassed to say how many times I have watched this:

Pop Culture Roundup – Post Thanksgiving Edition

Hopefully by now all the effects of the massive amounts of turkey everyone consumed over the holiday weekend have worn off. It’s funny – I only had two days off from work for Thanksgiving, yet it felt like a lifetime. It feels weird to be back to work and be putting in a full week.

While I readjust to life in the office, check out the usual roundup of some pop culture nuggets from the last two weeks.

  • RIP Larry Hagman. J.R. Ewing goes down in the record books as a great TV villain. Hagman was one of the best things about the Dallas reboot on TNT. A handful of episodes for the second season have already been filmed, but his death will be addressed on the show.
  • The only thing surprising about this is the timing, since I’m guessing the show won’t be back after this season – Chevy Chase has quit Community.
  • Monday night I let my nerd flag fly as I went to a lecture by famed documentarian Ken Burns. He was being recognized by the NYS Achieves and it is no exaggeration to say that I was definitively the youngest person in the room. Between this and Lincoln, I’m spending a lot of time with octogenarians recently. I am a big fan of Ken Burn’s Baseball anthology, so I was interested to hear what he had to say. He was great and even gave the audience a sneak peek at his 2014 documentary The Roosevelts.  He’s also working on a documentary on the history of country music.
  • I don’t know what is in the water over at Two and a Half Men, but it apparently makes their cast act erratic. Angus T. Jones (the half man from the title) made a video in which he refers to the show he stars on is “filth” and has encouraged people to stop watching it. (Side note – Angus T. Jones sounds more like the name of an Old West Sherriff than a child actor). Yesterday he issued a statement apologizing for the remarks. Jon Cryer – your move.
  • Since it looks like I’m not going to make it to the 12-12-12 Sandy relief concert at MSG, I’m glad I can still see it on cable.
  • Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino are reuniting for Martic Scorsese’s new film, I Heard You Paint Houses. The title isn’t promising, so hopefully this isn’t another Righteous Kill.
  • Neil Patrick Harris’ new webseries, Neil’s Puppet Dreams, has debuted:

 

  • FX has ordered more episodes of Brand X (Russell Brand’s show) and Totally Biased With W. Kamau Bell. Not a Brand fan, but I have been meaning to check out Totally Biased. Glad I’ll have the chance.
  • A 90s TV reunion that apparently isn’t happening? Kenan and Kel.
  • I love this headline from Gawker comparing Halle Berry’s life to an episode of Maury. Not a big fan of her, but I do feel for her daughter.
  • If NBC’s Hannibal fails, it won’t be from lack of star power. And yes, Hannibal refers to Hannibal Lecter of Silence of the Lambs fame.
  • A Hip-Hop Tribute to The Goonies? Kind of terrible and kind of awesome all at the same time.

 

  • If you’ve got some spare change lying around, the piano from Casablanca is up for auction at Sotheby’s next month. (Better use of your money – sending it to you favorite pop culture blogger).
  • Though the Candy Corn Oreos eluded me, I finally found Ben and Jerry’s Cannoli flavored ice cream. It was OK – I’d be hard pressed to think any ice cream is bad – but probably wasn’t worth the months of searching.
  • Portlandia will air a special winter episode on December 14th on IFC and season 3 will premiere on January 4th. An impressive list of guest stars is lined up for the new season.
  • Alicia Keys stopped by Late Night with Jimmy Fallon to sing a very special song:

PS. Did everyone else know that Alicia Keys was on The Cosby Show? She is the second little girl in this clip:

 

  • Those scamps over at The Onion tricked a Chinese newspaper into believing they had really named dictator Kin Jong Un the “sexiest man alive.”
  • This Guy Fieri sketch for SNL was done in dress rehearsal, but never made it to air:
  • NPR did a story on Chuck Lorre, producer of The Big Bang Theory, Mike & Molly and Two and a Half Men. I only consider one of those shows watchable, but you can’t argue that all three are successful.
  • It’s the beginning of the end – the cast of Breaking Bad is receiving scripts for the first episode of the final season. I will probably cry when this show ends – it is one of my all time favorites.
  • Anna Nicole Smith’s 6-year-old daughter will model for Guess, following in her mother’s footsteps.
  • CeeLo teamed up with the Muppets for a music video:

 

  • HBO’s Beyoncé documentary will premiere February 16th. You think that woman isn’t powerful? Microsoft Word just autocorrected the spelling of her name to include the acute accent mark.
  • My freshman year of college I would hang out with some of the guys in our dorm lounge to watch CHiPs re-runs in between classes, so this Star Wars/ CHiPs mashup made me smile:
  • As an avid fan of all things The Wire, I couldn’t pass up this interview with Dominic West (McNulty).
  • Killer Karaoke and Wives with Knives? Real shows.
  • Want proof of the power of a laugh track? Watch Game of Thrones reimagined as a sitcom:

 

  • And finally, The Shining: The Musical:

Much more creative than Oklahoma and Grease, both of which my high school did.

Happy Wednesday!!