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Star Wars: The Force Takes Over

A week-and-a-half into its premiere and The Force Awakens has gifted 2015 with its second $1 billion+ box office monster (the first was Jurassic World). The space epic also became the fastest movie to achieve the aforementioned cinematic feat, barely edging out its prehistoric competition. Star Wars fanatics are undeniably confirming and showcasing their storied, wide-spread fandom to the world and its outer galaxies through ticket sales at the hyper-drive of the Millennium Falcon.

Fans are ecstatic that the old gang (and its new crew) are, as Han Solo says in the trailer, “home.”

Fortunately for us, the creative minds at ESPN joined forces with Star Wars royalty for a special documentary of sorts. The worldwide leader in sports ventured across the galaxy to become the worldwide leader in…

Lightsabers!

Have an Awesome Week Filled with Discovery!

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Lightsabers: On

May the force be with us all…in one year.

This is the first teaser trailer for the J.J. Abrams-directed movie, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It just might be kind of popular when it arrives in movie theaters next December.

Star Wars may be a story of good v. evil, but the trailer above is unequivocally good!

Welcome to The Goldbergs: Episode XXII

“Sunday Matinee: It’s like wearing someone else’s wedding dress”

Spoiler Alert: This post contains scenes and content from the May 6, 2014 episode of The Goldbergs

As Adam’s quote above clearly explains, seeing the theatrical release of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi on opening night became the pinnacle of his existence. And, as all good younger brothers do when they’re in a life-altering quandary (speaking from personal experience here), Adam blackmailed his older sister into waiting with him in line to see this new epic space tale on the silver screen at the local theater.

Obvious success, right?

Think again.

A long line + a long time waiting (Forrest Gump-level soda’s consumed by the excited Adam) + sitting in between a 46 year-old man with a talking Yoda puppet and another grown man sitting on a life-size Tauntaun (no joke) + Erica’s friend walking by with two “cool” guys not into Star Wars = an epic betrayal and two cinnamon rolls/swirly muffins.

We’ll come back to this brother-sister equation a little later.

In the meantime, middle child Barry was busy embracing all things Hulk Hogan (as we all do). Unbeknownst to Barry though, the WWF wasn’t real. After several (yes, it took several) warnings that slamming your opponent over the head with a folded chair was not a legitimate aspect of real wrestling, Barry was training to do whatever it took to impress his crush. For him, this meant earning a varsity jacket. Hilariously, the only person standing in his way was his over-protective mother Beverly Goldberg with her countless stories of fellow teenage boys who all seemed to have tragic mishaps with absolutely everything she didn’t want her son to do.

The stories were totally believable, though. I mean, we’ve all seen a mom carrying the head of her son around the grocery store with her son’s vital organs perfectly functioning from his neck after a freak wrestling accident, right?

Okay, maybe Murray had a point about that one…

Growing up with siblings, there are those special moments that arrive with all the excitement and fanfare of a new Star Wars movie: the instance(s) when an older sister just might become a friend. It’s as rare as holding a real-life lightsaber and it should be treated with as much precision and ecstatic jubilation as waving Luke’s trusted sword made of blue light. This moment occurs during the older sister’s teenage years, which can be difficult because this is when she’s trying to leave behind childish indulgences. This includes dressing up like Princess Leia and battling her then much younger brother dressed as Darth Vader in their basement recorded on VHS (ie-Adam’s winning bargaining chip). As this sitcom does so perfectly, this plot line really hit home for me. My two older sisters and I used to build forts and act goofy all the time in our younger days before the necessity to be “cool” became the undisputed priority of all things important.

For me, it wasn’t Star Wars, but a compendium of events with my two older sisters: It was riding bikes to UDF for ice cream during the summer, playing football with one of my older sister’s friends one Saturday, learning clever and edgy jokes while sitting in an Asian airport while on a family vacation, being “kidnapped” by my sister and her friends for my birthday, trick-or-treating with my sister and her friends, visiting both of them at college and laughing at old-style SNL humor found in Grown Ups and Grown Ups 2.

The relationship between siblings is fascinating and special to say the least, partly because the seemingly unfiltered honesty. We can be blunt with comedic “burns” and it works somehow. We can blackmail our older sister with pictures during her first boy-girl party ($5 a pop!). A comfort level and understanding grows between brother and sister(s), even to the point when Erica finally realizes that after bailing on her younger brother to spend time with her cool friends while he went to the bathroom and therefore lost his place in line, she knew the real reason why Adam coaxed her to seeing Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi with him: the hope for sibling friendship.

Cognizant of her little brother’s sincere motivation, Erica did the unthinkable: she dressed up like Princess Leia (again), fully equipped with cinnamon rolls/swirly muffins on her ears and bribed an usher with a date at the local theater to sneak them into Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi!

“Star Wars: It gave us lightsabers, the force and Billy Dee Williams in a cape.” 

And a fun day at the movies between brother and sister.

At school, Barry heeded the wrestling advice of his dad Murray. After suffering defeat on the mat to his mother in front of everybody (don’t mess with Thunder Bev!), he embraced his WWF character (also named Barry from Philadelphia) and dominated his opponent with the support of his family looking on with pride.

Victory!

As his crush looked on with smiling approval, Barry messed that moment up like only Barry could, which led to a halted chair-over-the-head of his opponent finale.

But don’t worry, Big Tasty will be surely be back for another round…       

The Goldbergs: Return of the Family.

Science’s Super Sitcom Septuplet

“The Big Bang Theory” has one of the best (if not the best) ensemble casts on television today. From the original gang of Howard, Leonard, Penny, Raj and Sheldon (don’t overreact Sheldon, it’s alphabetical), the past 6 1/2 seasons have proven that each character is capable of individually and collaboratively spurring terrific fits of laughter for hilarious entertainment.

In recent seasons, the show has successfully incorporated the love of Howard Wolowitz’s life, Bernadette, the slightly clumsy microbiologist, and Sheldon’s girlfriend and Penny’s BFF Amy Farrah Fowler (TVs Blossom!) into the mix as regulars.

7 (+ or -) an ever-changing value of comedic variables has become known as “The Big Bang Theory’s” Law.

And then there are the outrageously funny and mindful mothers. The dynamic of Leonard and Sheldon being the perfect son for the other person’s Mom is thoroughly enjoyable to watch. Plus, Raj’s parents cannot be ignored. However, the two of them seem to be preferring the opposite these days regarding their marriage…

It’s probably a safe bet that two of the biggest surprises yet to come in this series center on Howard and debuting his Wheel of Fortune-genius Mother to the public and identifying his absent Father and his actual back story.

The former will be funny for sure (so there are two CBS sitcoms that focus in some way on hiding the identity of a mother?), while the latter will bring emotional tears to everyone’s eyes. But these two mysteries won’t be solved or happening for years to come.

Whether it’s Wil Wheaton (“Wheaton!!”), reluctant comic book store owner Stuart or Penny’s former boyfriend/karaoke singing maestro Zach, the roster is deep for the CBS King of Sitcoms. The character lineup for “The Big Bang Theory” is equivalent to the periodic table, which has all the elements you need and, thankfully, has not been fully disclosed yet to the audience. There is still a lot more show left and many more elements to mix into this batch of hilarity.

Plus, we cannot forget about Dr. George Smoot, Bill Nye the Science Guy, Bob Newhart and this guy named Stephen Hawking.

That’s not too bad a list of guest stars (yes Sheldon, that’s sarcasm).

As is usually the case for popular sitcoms, the goofy, complementary characters tend to develop into audience favorites with funny, zany quirks (Nicolas Cage anyone?) and outrageous double entendre one-liners that only Raj can deliver with absolute comedic precision.

Spoiler Alert Warning!

The episode from last night ended with one of the interactive qualities that has resulted from the show’s popularity and clever writing: must-have merchandise! First, it was a singing Soft Kitty (My Mom can attest that it’s awesome). Then, it was the red “Bazinga!” t-shirt, Howard’s belt buckles, etc. However, as mentioned above, the best item may have premiered yesterday evening around 9:29 p.m. EST in the show’s closing moments. In the form of an apology to best bud Howard, Raj debuted to the world light-wait for it (yes, this CBS sitcom crossover reference totally works here)…saber belt buckles that glow in the dark!

The awkward double entendre moment between happily clueless Raj and cognizant Howard was priceless!

Here are the two questions that need to be asked: How comically perfect are Howard and Raj? And second, when will those glowing light saber belt buckles be for sale!?

From creative belt buckles to a trademarked three-knock protocol to new favorite characters, “The Big Bang Theory” continues to evolve with a bigger bang each week.

Like students in science class, the sitcom’s millions of fans anxiously await for the teacher or professor to perform his or her next entertaining experiment. There’s a certain unpredictable chemical imbalance going on in Pasadena and it feels great to watch those elements shake around in the beaker every Thursday night at 8:00 p.m. on CBS.

P.S. One more important inquiry: Anyone else notice Penny’s last name has never been revealed…