Hiro Gets Game

29 07 2008

Welcome to another great Mystery Topic Challenge, brought to you by Blog Ninjas. This week’s topic was chosen by Jayne, the originator of the challenge and worthy winner of MTC#13. She’s been unfortunate to not win before as she’s probably the finest writer of our bunch and always produces such fascinating entries to every challenge.

Needless to say her choice of topic was equally inspired. Here it is:

Put Yourself in Someone Else’s Shoes

Blogs, for the most part, tend to be personal and egocentric. For this challenge, choose someone, real or imagined, in the news, a world leader, or a bum on the street. Write a post as if you were in their shoes for one day. You can write on any subject you’d like, but it MUST be from someone else’s point of view.

Having spent the best part of the last year completely obsessed with Heroes, since Hiro is his favourite character, Mr President chose to write as him. As a man used to writing under his true identity the idea of pretending to be someone else is alien, but he’ll try.

Today I met a very beautiful girl. Thankfully, this time, she is not already betrothed to a great samurai warrior with the power to spontaneously regenerate who waits 400 years to kill my father just because I kissed his girl first. Man that Takezo is such an Emo.

Anyway, I asked her if she would like to go out with me and she made fun of me. These stupid glasses make me look like a bit silly. At least in the future I had the good sense to get rid of them and make myself look badass. I have no trouble getting women in the future, hell sometimes I even do better than Peter because of his really lame scar.

Not to mention the fact that women dig a man with a big sword.

She’s a cheerleader and they never go out with us geeks. A cheerleader, you’d think I’d have learnt my lesson after traipsing across the world, not to mention time, to save one but nooo, not me! What is it with me and chasing after those damn cheerleaders?

Later on, I overheard her talking and she was telling her friends how she’d wanted to go to a concert but couldn’t, because the tickets had all sold out. That was it! I made a face like I was constipated and went back in time to the day the tickets went on sale.

When I got back with the tickets I paused time and decided to pull up her skirt. Which is exactly what anyone else with the power to stop time would have done. Besides, it’s not like she’d know. At least now you know why I’m smiling like that in the photo above.

I re-started time and showed her my tickets. She was suitably impressed and we’ve got a date this Saturday. Who says Hiro doesn’t have game? I am the man!

JG8D69D





Oscar-Worthy Ledger Bails Out Bale

27 07 2008

Due to unforeseen circumstances Mr President was unable to post yesterday’s blog. He had planned to regale you with his review of The Dark Knight but he got back from the cinema later than he’d planned (2:00am) and he was too tired to write at that hour. You people got more time to give him feedback anyway (clearly you love the blog!).

Most reviews will tell you about the film. But anyone can do that. Instead he is going to tell you a bit more about the circumstances of seeing the film. Don’t worry, it’s a story that merits telling. Saturday night is always peak time to see a movie, even more so in the week of release (The Dark Knight came out here on the 24th). Knowing this, the cinema had a lot of screenings, including two scheduled for 8pm and one at 9pm.

His companion and he had arrived at a quarter to eight. The plan was if they didn’t get tickets for either of the two 8pm screenings they would surely get tickets for the 9pm one, right? Wrong. Not only did both 8pm screenings sell out but the 9pm one actually sold out first (while he was queuing). So they bought tickets for a 10:30pm screening at 7.59pm; no wonder there were still 298 tickets left out of a maximum 300 seats!

So, having waited for ages for the film to be released, Mr President then had to wait two further hours. If his appetite wasn’t already whetted it was now. Still, at least it was 18+ only (no kids, thank God!) and gave him chance to make room for ice-cream. Sadly it also meant he wasn’t able to get back and blog his awesome review until today.

Before going to see The Dark Knight (TDK hereafter) Mr President re-watched Batman Begins and it reminded him just how good a film it was. Bale’s Batman was better than Keaton’s, though his Wayne was perhaps weaker. The overall feel had been better than Burton’s offerings (as good as they were) and the end set up the sequel perfectly.

Remember at the end of Begins, when Gordon turns to ask Batman “And what about escalation?”. TDK is a film all about the answer to that question, as Batman’s quest to save Gotham escalates into all-out war. Just as the Caped Crusader has the mob on its knees he comes across a man as devoted to chaos as Batman is to order; The Joker.

Let’s get the messy bit out of the way. When Ledger was cast as the Joker, a role that Jack Nicholson had seemingly nailed, Mr President was rather angry. He didn’t believe Ledger could possibly do better with the role than Nicholson had done. Not only did he do just that but he made Nicholson’s Joker look distinctly second-rate. Sorry Jack.

Heath Ledger deserves to win an oscar. Not because he’s dead, but simply because that was the best performance in a comic book movie ever. TDK did not transcend the genre; Ledger’s performance did. He was psychotic, disturbed, funny, malevolent. In other words he was The Joker. He took a larger-than-life character and made it real.

It’s a good thing he was. Perhaps it was a side-effect of just how good Ledger was, but Bale was stale, stilted, and lost what made him such a great Batman in Begins. The support cast saved him, as Caine, Oldman, Freedman and especially Eckhart all did fine jobs and Gyllenhaal was ok without being her usual excellent self. It was a solid cast.

Unfortunately TDK was also too long. When he left Iron Man Mr President felt thrilled, he thought to himself “OMFG, what a good film!” TDK’s ending lacked that punch due to its drawn-out nature. When he woke up this morning, he felt perhaps he’d been too harsh, as it was late and he was tired for the last half hour, but no, his instincts were right.

Not wanting to spoil it for those who have not seen it yet (yeah right!), there was this moment, at around two hours, where the main story arc ended and it was perfectly set up to end this film and leave a cliffhanger for a possible third. Up until this point the script was well-paced and it was easily the best film of the year. Then it happened.

Remember how, at the end of Return Of The King, Peter Jackson undid it all with a poor last thirty minutes that was unnecessary? Nolan did the same to TDK. He decided to tell another story within the same film, and consequently this story arc felt rushed. Unlike ROTK, it wasn’t bad, just deserved a film of its own rather than being “tacked on”.

Overall the film was excellent. The dialogue was witty, sharp and incredibly prophetic, the story woven together very organically and the visuals were breathtaking. The action sequences were as good as any you’ll see. Had it ended at two hours it would have left Iron Man in the dust but as it was, it ranks on a par with it. 4 stars (would’ve been 5)





Wiki-Wednesday – Desire Walks On

23 07 2008

Desire Walks On

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Desire Walks On
Desire Walks On cover
Studio album by Heart
Released 16 November 1993
Genre Hard rock
Length 57:51
Label Capitol
Producer Duane Baron, John Purdell, Don Grierson
Professional reviews
Heart chronology
Rock the House Live!
(1991)
“Desire Walks On”
(1993)
The Road Home
(1995)

Desire Walks On is the 11th album released in 1993 by the rock/pop band Heart. It yielded three singles; “Will You Be There”, which reached number thirty-nine on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, “Black On Black II”, which was a mainstream rock hit, and “The Woman In Me”, which failed to make the Hot 100 but “bubbled under” at number 105. The album peaked at number forty-eight in the U.S.

Track listing

  1. “Desire” – 0:18
  2. “Black On Black II” (Ann Wilson, Nancy Wilson, Lisa Dalbello) – 3:51
  3. “Back To Avalon” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Kit Hain) – 3:40
  4. The Woman In Me” (Michael Clark, John Bettis) – 4:00
  5. “Rage” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Sue Ennis) – 5:01
  6. “In Walks the Night” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Daniel O’Brien, Tina Harris) – 6:01
  7. “My Crazy Head” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Ennis) – 4:31
  8. “Ring Them Bells” (Bob Dylan) – 3:49
  9. Will You Be There (In the Morning)” (Robert “Mutt” Lange) – 4:29
  10. “Voodoo Doll” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Amy Sky, John Capek) – 4:52
  11. “Anything Is Possible” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Dalbello)- 5:00
  12. “Avalon (Reprise)” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Hain) – 0:31
  13. “Desire Walks On” (A. Wilson, N. Wilson, Ennis) – 5:06

Performers





Wiki-Wednesday – Sexuality (album)

16 07 2008

Sexuality (album)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Sexuality
Sexuality cover
Studio album by Sébastien Tellier
Released February 25, 2008
Genre Synthpop, R&B
Label Record Makers / Lucky Number Music
Producer Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo
Professional reviews
Sébastien Tellier chronology
Universe
( 2006 )
Sexuality
( 2008 )

Sexuality is the third studio album by French artist Sébastien Tellier, released on February 25, 2008. The album was produced by Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, who is best known as one of the members of Daft Punk.

Conception

Sexuality is the first studio album by Tellier produced by someone other than himself. When de Homem-Christo was asked to produce the album, he was flattered and immediately agreed to do it. He expressed that Tellier “is maybe the best singer and composer in France today” and felt that the album was one of the few collaborative efforts in which he could contribute significantly and uniquely. “If you feel it and if you feel something creatively interesting then it’s possible.” Their previous professional meeting was during the production period of the film Daft Punk’s Electroma, in which Daft Punk requested the use of Tellier’s song “Universe”.

The first “taster” from the album was “Sexual Sportswear”, which was revealed on Tellier’s MySpace page. He described the instrumental track as “a direct combination of what I was doing before and what Guy-Man can do.” When questioned on the two seemingly strangely juxtaposed words in the title, Tellier replied: “In my own sexual fantasies I always think about women in sportswear. I like women in sports pants and prefer peeling them off women to lifting up their skirts.”

Regarding the style of the album, Tellier stated, “It is not at all like what I have released before and nothing like what Guy-Man did with Daft Punk.” He also elaborated that, “It’s very electronic and like intellectual R&B, although not in the same way that Beyoncé or Justin Timberlake are R&B… I tried to keep vulgarity away from sex and my music.”

Track listing

  1. “Roche”
  2. “Kilometer”
  3. “Look”
  4. Divine
  5. “Pomme”
  6. “Une Heure”
  7. “Sexual Sportswear”
  8. “Elle”
  9. “Fingers of Steel”
  10. “Manty”
  11. “L’amour et la Violence”

Personnel

Chart positions

Chart Peak position
French Albums Chart 33
Sweden Albums Chart 43




Wiki-Wednesday – Howard G. Minsky

2 07 2008

Howard G. Minsky

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Howard G Minsky (born 21 January 1914) is the producer of the blockbuster film Love Story which when released in 1970 was widely thought to have saved Paramount Pictures during a financially strained time. He later produced Jory in 1973.

Howard Minsky had a love story of his own, married to Sylvia for over 65 years until her death in 2002.

Minsky lives in Palm Beach, Florida.





Back To Brit-Bashing

21 06 2008

It’s been quite a while since Britney Spears last made an appearance on Textual Relations and this simply won’t do. Such a long period without Mr President ripping shreds out of the posterchild for why pop music has been rubbish for the past twenty years is quite simply a travesty. So today he looks to address this with a little indulgence in his favourite pastime; Brit-bashing.

Mother Of The Decade Ms Spears has revealed that she believes she won’t live beyond the magical 27. Of course this is also the age that legends such as Hendrix, Morrison and Cobain died. This is really no shock, given Britney’s descent into madness over recent years, but should she be mentioned in the same breath as those legends?

Mr President is quite the admirer of Ian Halperin, whose book “Who Killed Kurt Cobain?” is a fascinating read. The idea that Cobain might’ve been murdered has long been ridiculed as a mere conspiracy theory but Halperin and Wallace put forward startling evidence suggesting it might be true. However this latest project is beneath him.

Everyone here at Textual Relations HQ hopes Britney dies on her 28th birthday, just to spite her and deny her entry to the 27 club. In fact, while he’s killing people off, Mr President would quite like to get his hands on whoever wrote that article and seems to think it’s ironic that Halperin also wrote a book about Cobain, who died at 27. In what way is that ironic, rather than coincidental? When will people learn the difference?!

Blood is beginning to pour out of Mr President’s ears so he’s going to depart now.





Wiki-Wednesday – The Underdog Show

11 06 2008

The Underdog Show

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Underdog Show
Format Dog Show
Starring Host: Julian Clary
Country of origin Flag of the United Kingdom United Kingdom
Production
Running time Main show: 1 hour
Results show :30 minutes
CBBC show 30 minutes
Broadcast
Original channel BBC Two
Original run 20 March 20071 May 2007
External links
Official website

The Underdog Show was a six week television series presented by Julian Clary and his dog, Valerie.

Format

The show on BBC2 featured celebrities Julia Sawalha, Anton du Beke, Clive Anderson, Huey Morgan, Mishal Husain, Selina Scott, Kirsty Gallacher and Theo Paphitis pairing up with untrained rescue dogs for a Crufts-style competition. Every week, one duo was eliminated by a panel of three professional judges Kay Lawrence, Annie Clayton and Peter Purves and the viewers via telephone voting. The outgoing dog being put up for adoption to find a new home with a viewer, although Theo, Kirsty and Clive adopted the rescue dogs they were paired with.

Steve Mann of Alpha Dog training School was the successful trainer of eventual winners, Selina and Chump. Steve Mann, a full time professional Dog Trainer is considered one of the best dog trainers in the UK.

A spin off show on CBBC replaced the celebrities with eight children paired up with eight rescue dogs and eight professional dog trainers.

1st Selina and Chump,
2nd Huey and Casper,
3rd Julia and Cookie,
4th Mishal and Robson,
5th Clive and Albert,
6th Anton and Ginger,
7th Kirsty and Bruno,
8th Theo and Claudia,