Friday, October 31, 2008

Behind The Scenes

There is one post on this site which has been viewed more than any other by a factor of ten. I posted it a few months ago after noticing someone on national television who merited my immediate investigation.

Every once in a while, the number of hits this site gets doubles or triples in a day, and I realize that this person must have recently been on television or in the news, prompting millions of others to ask the same question I did.

What is that question? Click here.

Celebrity Math Strikes Back



Jayson Werth = Edge
Edge = Jayson Werth

Seriously, these guys should dress up as each other for Halloween.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Sports Illustrated


Here are the Top 20 Sports Illustrated covers from the 1950's.

What ever they were doing with color photography back then - many of the picture covers look like Norman Rockwell paintings.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Phillies - World Champions!

Superstar Pro Wrestling Game


Back in the 1980's they used to sell the Superstar Pro Wrestling Game - a kind of Strat-O-Matic for Pro Wrestling - featuring playable cards for all the popular wrestlers of the day.

It was extraordinarily hard to get; only one store in my area even carried it - The Compleat Strategist - and they were always sold out.

When I finally got my hands on the game, I was a bit disappointed in it. It was OK, but the "action" was kind of meaningless; wrestlers attempt piledrivers and other finishers as opening moves - and it all really came down to rolling dice and adding up points found on the cards.

I was a bit surprised today to find a very playable PC version of the game available for free download at this site. (It's PC only, but the site provides the source code - so I just might attempt to try to make a Mac version someday).

When I say "very playable" I mean I spent hours with this thing today. As I remembered, the "action" isn't quite right - but the results of the matches are very realistic. The wrestlers supplied with the game are all from the 1980's (Flair, Hogan, Rhodes, Backlund, and such) - but you can create your own if desired.

PC users - give it a shot.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

World Series Update


Last night, Aquarama made it's triumphant return to South Philly.

The bad news is - whenever they repeat the final game of the Phillies 2008 World Series victory, it'll be a two-parter.

The good news is - they can win it all early tomorrow - meaning people (especially kids) might actually see a World Series game completed before midnight. Also - in Philly - we can all celebrate, get drunk, arrested, and be out on the street by morning.

Andy Kaufman on The Midnight Special


Whenever Andy Kaufman appeared on television it was an event - and his 1981 appearance on The Midnight Special was no exception. In fact, it was so memorable that the entire episode was released on DVD a few years back (the only such episode of Midnight Special to get such recognition).

Midnight Special was a weekly contemporary music show that aired on NBC - Fridays after The Tonight Show. The acts were recorded live, but the show was taped, and had that "70's variety show" feel to it. Still, the show was often quite good and highly regarded. It was canceled not long after this episode aired to make room for SCTV.

Keep in mind that when this originally aired, a lot of regular viewers still didn't know what to make of Andy Kaufman and his act. We now know that "Bob" in the Tony Clifton sketch is Bob Zmuda - Kaufman's comedy partner. We didn't know it then, and the Clifton performance just seemed totally bizarre and out of control.

Part One is here, Part Two is here. Enjoy!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Batman vs. Super-King


It's classic wrestling time again - this week coming to you from the old Memphis territory when Jerry Lawler was champion.

Yes, that's Batman cutting a promo; and doesn't he look almost exactly like Adam West from the old Batman TV show? Come to think of it, he sounds just like Adam West too.

Wait a minute - it IS Adam West! (Sounds like the Joker must have sprayed him with some kind of intoxicating gas just before the interview!)

Phillies lead Rays 3-1


Hey - let's all jump on the bandwagon!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Unpack Your Adjectives


In the 1970's and probably into the 80's - ABC used to run short animated segments between its Saturday morning kids programs called Schoolhouse Rock (or Grammar Rock, or other titles that ended in "Rock"). They managed to be educational and entertaining - something today's kids programming seems incapable of being.

Some of the songs were so memorable, that I still hum them today - 30+ years later. I was reminded of this one - "Unpack Your Adjectives" today while doing a look-up of its vocalist Blossom Dearie. Dearie was most famous for singing jazz standards, but did a handful of these for ABC - all quite nice.

So enjoy the song, but be prepared to hum it for the next few decades or so.

200 Motels... again


If you took a pass on watching 200 Motels on TCM the other night - congratulate yourself; you made the right call. It was a lot of pretentious stream-of-consciousness hippie nonsense. (There was a reason people hated hippies back in the day, and this movie is good evidence of why - they weren't all like Goldie Hawn in Butterflies Are Free you know).

It's always interesting to watch a movie like this on TCM - a network known for showing Andy Hardy movies. 200 Motels has its share of R-rated language and nudity - but it's mainly just plain 100 times stranger than anything else that runs on the channel.

Here's the trailer - which succeeds in making the movie look more entertaining than it is. Note that 200 Motels was the first and only movie shot and edited on video and then transferred to film. (That's why it looks like a bad 60's variety show).

Joe Biden


As a follow-up to the article by Pat Buchanan earlier this week - about how the media has largely given Joe Biden a free pass... here's a conservative anchor-bot attacking Biden during a satellite interview. Biden handles himself well, although he does wonder aloud at one point if he's being punk'd.

Phillies lead Rays 2-1


Furthering Comcast's reputation for unparalleled excellence - last night the cable went out during the World Series in most of the Philadelphia area (including my house) - denying paying customers the chance to see the Phillies hit back-to-back homeruns in the bottom of the sixth inning. (They screwed up Saturday Night Live too - much of the first hour was unintelligible).

Undaunted, I "watched" the homeruns using MLB.com's free "Gameday" feature (above) - which is way more interesting than I remember it ever being. In addition to the speed of every pitch, it's type (fastball, curve, etc..) and break - they give you something called PFX that I don't even understand (pitch FX..?).

The play-by-play is not in real-time, so following along with a live telecast is futile, however Gameday is archived - so you can pretty much revisit archived games whenever you want.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

R2D2 Mailbox


Found on Flickr - a mailbox that looks like R2D2.

David, Lewis, Brooks


Three liberal comics weigh in on the election for The Huffington Post.
Two are worried, one isn't.

Friday, October 24, 2008

DVR Alert: 200 Motels


OK, we all know 200 Motels is probably awful, but TCM is showing it tonight (at 3:45 am, as part of their "crappy movies late-night Friday" lineup), and when will you ever get another chance to see it?

Pat Buchanan


Pat Buchanan's conservative political views are slightly to the right of Saturn, but he's right on the money in this article for World Net Daily. The media has jumped all over Sarah Palin, and has largely ignored the equally laughable exploits of Joe Biden.

Semi-Pro


Here is one of my favorite clips of all-time: the "jive turkey" scene from Semi-Pro.

This scene was so good, even Andy Richter couldn't ruin it!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Flick


Remember when we learned why comic books avoid characters named Clint?

Well the same goes for the word "flick" (see above). I understand DC Comics banned both words for many years - for obvious reasons. The above example is from Marvel's Fantastic Four #7 (1962).

Ron Howard


Wow - Hollywood really wants Obama to be President. How else to explain Ron Howard and Henry Winkler doing the Happy Days bit again?

And here's a bunch of comedians that don't think it's funny that all those red states keep leaning toward the wrong candidate. (Interesting note: If I read this site correctly, you can actually sponsor one of their commercials to air on local television for $100, and get "sponsored by (your name)" to appear at the end).

What will Hollywood and New York do if McCain is elected - secede?

Phillies lead Rays 1-0


Here come the fluff pieces.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

On The Television


On The Television was a very funny show that aired on Nick at Nite between 1989-90. Not many people remember it, and I believe there are some kind of complicated rights issues that have kept it off video and DVD after its original run.

The show was a spoof of Siskel and Ebert: At The Movies, but hosts Tim Conway, Jr. (yes, Tim's son) and George McGrath reviewed made-up television shows, not movies - which were really comedy sketches performed by talented members of The Groundlings including Lisa Kudrow and Kathy Griffin.

This clip is a bizarre parody of Hee-Haw - which is a great thing right there.

Phillies


...in five.

(After the "jump" - look for a bizarre mash-up of the 1976 Phillies performing "Phillies Fever" combined with images of the 2008 team).

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Shatner


Let's watch William Shatner bemoan the fact that George Takei didn't invite him to his wedding.

The interviewer mispronounces Takei's last name, and Shats calls him sick and psychotic - so I'm really still puzzled why Sulu didn't want him at the wedding.

Charley's Big Scam


Here's an ad from a 1970 issue of Fantastic Four featuring lovable TV personality Charlie Weaver.

Just send Charley the modern equivalent of $5.60 - and he'll send you the old Mr. Spock "double a penny every day - and you'll have a million dollars in a month" bit.

There's only one person getting rich from this scheme, and he's at the bottom right on Hollywood Squares.

Monday, October 20, 2008

World Series


Here's an interesting article about how experts are predicting record-low TV ratings for this year's World Series.

It seems any series without the Yankees or Red Sox just doesn't play with the rest of America these days.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Guy Who Sounds Like David Brent - RIP


No sooner had we discovered the Guy Who Sounds Like David Brent™ and his many delightful imitators, did we receive word earlier today that the great man himself died in December, 2007.

Here's a horribly inappropriate tribute/impression given the circumstances.

Goodnight funny man. We hardly knew ye!

Fantastic Four Radio Show


In 1975, there was a nationally syndicated radio show based on the Fantastic Four comic book.

I was a huge fan of the comic - but I bailed on the show during its first episode; it just seemed kind of stupid to adapt such a visual medium - for radio.

Little did I know that the guy playing the Human Torch (above) was soon to become one of my favorite comedians.

Create Your Own Superhero


Here's Sgt. Schmuck.

I created him using the Create Your Own Superhero app at Marvel.com.

Why is he holding a Lord of the Rings sword?

What's with all the questions?!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Edie Adams


I was sad to hear that Edie Adams passed away this week.

She was probably best known for her cigar commercials in the 1960's, and her work with husband Ernie Kovacs during TV's golden age - where she was often quite funny.

This is a good a time as any to link to Kovacs' famous Nairobi Trio sketch. Like a lot of the stuff Kovacs did in the early days, it's funny - and kind of creepy. I believe that's Edie on the right (pregnant!), Ernie in the middle, and I once heard Jack Lemmon is the one on the left. (I wonder if that's true?)

The Guys Who Sound Like The Guy Who Sounds Like David Brent


A few weeks ago, we directed your attention to the guy on YouTube who sounds like David Brent.

The inevitable (?) slew of imitations followed - so today we bring you the guys who sound like ... the guy who sounds like David Brent.

Remember... "Do that twice... and you'll be banned from driving..."

Thursday, October 16, 2008

TV Guide


TV Guide - the magazine that nobody needs anymore - just sold for one dollar.

That's the whole damn company - one dollar.

Andy Kaufman


Today's video is inspired by my wife (Mrs. Golem - who spent part of seventies and eighties in a dreary land across the sea) asking, "Who's Andy Kaufman?"

How do you describe Andy Kaufman to the uninitiated? Suffice it to say that when he was alive, television was a lot more interesting (and dangerous).

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Munsters

video


Here it is - due to overwhelming (?) demand... the time Herman Munster tried out for the Los Angeles Dodgers (Well, coach Leo Durocher anyway - who displays his comedic chops quite capably in the above clip).

A couple of things to notice about this clip:
1) Herman elbows Eddie in the head at about 0:30 - a blow that would clearly have killed the little werewolf considering all the other feats of inhuman strength we subsequently witness.

2) Did that grounder put a hole in the thirdbaseman's glove hand?

How much would TV Characters really earn?


Did you ever lie awake at night wondering what your favorite TV characters would earn if they were real?

You really need to get a life!

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Gobbledy-Gooker


Without doubt, the world of Professional Wrestling has provided its fans with many exciting moments of action and thrills over the years.

This isn't one of them.

Posters (World War II Edition)


Here are a number of posters from World War II - courtesy of Flickr user "HeadOvMetal".

They tend to lean a bit heavy on the racist, so forewarned is forearmed. There's at least one about VD, and Rosie the Riveter is in there somewhere too. Enjoy!

Posters (Movie Edition)


Here is a nice collection of fifty "beautiful" (according to them) movie posters - courtesy of "Smashing Magazine".

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Who's Nailin' Paylin?


The big news is not that Hustler is making a porn film called Who's Nailin' Paylin (starring Lisa Ann, above). No, the big news is that a) it took them this long to make it (I was kind of expecting something like this within 24 hours of Sarah Palin's first appearance as intended VP) and b) porn films have scripts, at least according to this exclusive leak of the shooting script by TMZ.

Eagles Kids Club


A local station in Philadelphia airs a weekly children's show called Eagles Kids Club. I am stumped by its existence somewhat because I've never seen such a show devoted to a local sports team.

At first, I assumed this was a national franchise - ala Bozo - localized for whatever sports market it happens to be airing in. Certainly, the animation is cheap enough (1990-era jittery computer grade). It would probably be possible to make a minimal number of changes to convert this to "Seahawks Kids Club" for the Seattle market: just change "Swoop" to an osprey, and switch color schemes from green to blue.

But, by God, this seems to be a product by and for the Philadelphia television market: a bona-fide local cartoon show. (Has there ever been such a thing?)

The animation is actually kept to a minimum; much of the show is devoted to live-action schtick acted out by whichever Eagle drew the short straw that week. Most of the content is Philly all the way - including a humorous (?) electric football segment narrated by local announcer Merrill Reese.

So what to make of this bizarre show? Have Channel 29 and the Eagles really combined to make a fairly expensive show strictly for the hung-over - and their children - to widely ignore on Sunday mornings?

Here's an archive of all the shows.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

McCain '08


Hey look - John McCain's poll numbers almost exactly match the trajectory of the stock market free-fall.

I guess I can temporarily suspend the lifelong dream of living in a country with a sexy Vice-President. :(

Ricky Gervais


In retrospect, I think it's safe to call Ricky Gervais a comedy genius; he invented a whole new form of comedy, and now everybody is doing his style (most badly).

Here's one of the funniest clips from the original Office - a show full of great moments like this.

Marianne Faithfull


Marianne Faithfull had a number of good songs in the sixties - around the time she was involved romantically with Mick Jagger (and several other notables - including Keith Richards).

This video isn't very good (was the camera nailed to the ground?) - but the song - written by Golem favorite Jackie DeShannon - is excellent; very Wes Andersen, no?

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Bee Gees


Let's watch the Bee Gees storm off a 1996 talk show.

At the start of the clip, the host (Clive Anderson) makes a joke that obviously sticks with Barry Gibb throughout the interview - because he references it on the way out.

Sad Guys on Trading Floors


Whenever the stock market drops, AP sends a photographer down to the NYSE to snap a hapless employee looking dejectedly up at the big board. It's a beloved tradition in this country, and - as this site demonstrates - all over the world.

The authors even toss Jack Paar-style quips to each photo for added comedic effect.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Dodgers


The Phillies face the Dodgers this week in what they call the "NLCS".

Although this site supports the Phillies, and has largely despised the Dodgers for years (I mean, have you ever heard this Vin Scully guy?) - we must take the time to appreciate the great Dodgers teams of the 60's, and their willingness to give tryouts to Herman Munster and Mr. Ed.

(Sorry, YouTube didn't have the Munster clip, but here's Herman singing "Dem Bones" as consolation).

E-Mailing While Drunk


In order to curb the rash of drunken e-mails that have been going out lately - especially on the weekends - Google Mail has instituted new tools that help prevent them.

During prime drinking hours (a user preference - but ideal for late nights and weekends), you must be able to answer a series of simple math questions before you can send an e-mail. This of course will only deter a certain percentage of "paralyzed" drunks - but at least it keeps Google's name in the headlines.

Robot Girl


"Boffins" (Brit slang for scientists) have invented a creepy-as-hell robot girl.

In order to drive home the creep-factor, today's Sun newspaper underscores the supplied video with horror movie music.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Sid Vicious


Here's punk drug-addict, murderer, and all-around great role-model Sid Vicious - doing the second best version of "My Way" ever.

Spider-Man vs. Johnny Carson


Last week, we reported on Stephen Colbert's upcoming appearance in a Spider-Man comic. As promised, here are the appearances by "Johnny Carson" in the same comic back in the 60's and early 70's.

Carson (and Ed McMahon) first appeared in Spider-Man #50 (with artwork by "Jazzy" Johnny Romita) when J. Jonah Jameson appeared on the Tonight Show to boast that he had recently acquired possession of Spider-Man's recently discarded costume.

Carson strikes back in Spider-Man #99 (above; art by Gil Kane) when he actually convinces the web-slinger to appear on the show, and do a little schtick during the monologue. It all ends with the cops chasing Spidey out of the studio. (The only other time this happened to a guest was with Monte Rock III in the mid-seventies).

Excelsior!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The World of Tomorrow


I've always been fascinated by the 1939 World's Fair in New York. It's interesting to see what the post-depression (and pre-war) crowd thought 1960 was going to be like.

Somebody assembled various home movies and bits from a Westinghouse propaganda film about the fair- and set them to music. It's all quite nice, and it's here for the clicking.