Biff Bam Pop! presents The GAR! Podcast, the Glenn Walker and Ray Cornwall weekly podcast where they talk unrehearsed about whatever happens to come to mind. It’s a nerd exploration of a nerd world. This week’s episode can be found right here, with more details – and your picks for TV’s most evil villain – after the jump.
Guest-Blogger Jim Knipp has a love-hate relationship with Zombies. After all, what is there to love or hate, heck, what is there to fear? Like Mummies, even Frankenstein can outrun them. Check out his thought process on zombies for our 31 Days of Horror, after the jump.
Do you remember your favourite teacher? Mine was my Grade 12 drama teacher. He would let us break into song and dance in the middle of a lesson plan. One person would start singing Bohemian Rhapsody, someone else would join in and then by the end he was right there with us singing the last note. Sometimes someone would start tapping their pen on a desk and it would turn into our own version of Stomp.
With the kids back to school again, I hope they get a teacher they can learn from, have fun with, and be inspired by. In keeping with this month’s Back To School theme, the Biff Bam Pop team has compiled a list of our favourite TV teachers.
Mr. Collins (The Wonder Years)
By: Perry Schwartz
I can’t believe Mr. Collins, Kevin Arnold’s cantankerous math teacher, only appeared in three original ‘The Wonder Years’ episodes (plus one montage episode). In those three episodes during season three of one of my all-time favourite shows, Mr. Collins, portrayed brilliantly by the late Steven Gilborn, taught Kevin so much about life, hard work and perseverance. At the moment when Kevin is most disillusioned with school, Mr. Collins shows him the way. His influence takes full effect in his final episode, The Goodbye. In this episode, Kevin realizes what his father had been preaching for years…that hard work pays off in life and that Mr. Collins was hard on him because he knew Kevin could do better. Kevin rewards him with an A+ on his mid-term, unfortunately, Mr. Collins passes away prior to Kevin taking the test.
Cue Linda Ronstadt’s ‘Goodbye My Friend’ and this epilogue from the adult Kevin Arnold (also cue the tears): Teachers never die. They live in your memory forever. They were there when you arrived, they were there when you left. Like fixtures. Once in a while they taught you something. But not that often. And, you never really knew them, any more than they knew you. Still, for awhile, you believed in them. And, if you were lucky, maybe there was one who believed in you.
See more of BBP’s favourite teachers after the jump!
Today, at E3, Microsoft took the stage at about 12:30pm EST (9:30am PST).
They opened with a gameplay demo of HALO 4. It looks great, the gameplay looks similar to that of Halo 3 and ODST. There seems to be a new type of enemy shown as well, an orb-type foe that seems to be able to fly at the speed of light, interesting stuff. There was also some kind of fiery skull monster, looking scary and great. About 5-7 minutes of demo there, and it was pretty impressive.
Then, we got nearly 10 minutes of gameplay from Splinter Cell: Blacklist. The game looks FANTASTIC! The kill system of tagging enemies is back, and implemented in a great way here. Watching the demo-er take Sam through a desert-style level and silently killing people, while using the targeting mode to kill multiple enemies at a time made the whole experience seem very well executed. This game should be a whole lot of fun.
All this week, Biff Bam Pop’s various writers will drop by with their thoughts on the best of the year when it comes to tv, music, movies, comics and more. Today, here’s a list of what topped our list of tv favourites. As you’ll see, one show in particular seemed to resonate with many of our illustrious contributors:
Whenever I try to describe this show to someone who hasn’t heard of American Horror Story, it comes across as something insane -and it kind of is. AHS is a sprawling, David lynch type nightmare involving a haunted house in Los Angeles, a family torn apart by infidelity, dead starlets, teen killers, a monster-baby hybrid, a guy in a rubber suit…and so much more. I sometimes wonder how the writers are going to keep the momentum going with this one, but I look forward to following along.
American Horror Story – Smart, clever, and damn twisted. Turned off by a really weak second season of The Walking Dead, I was looking for something with bite and this show delivered. A great, compelling drama with a jaw-dropping surprises which is rare these days.
I have a hard time believing that American Horror Story came from the same mind that gave us Glee. I love the fact that the show is on FX, as it means Ryan Murphy can take off the gloves and let loose with some of the most twisted horror ever created for television. Sure, Dylan McDermott may cry a little too much on the show, but somebody better polish off an Emmy with Jessica Lange’s name on it, as she’s doing great work as the next door neighbour you’d never want to mess with.
Episodes on Showtime: A TV show about making a TV show. More specifically, a TV show about an American studio ruining an adaptation of a successful British comedy. Playing himself playing the leading man, Matt Leblanc does a fantastic job of both roles. His willingness to have a major plot point hang on the fact he isn’t a particularly funny or talented actor shows that he is, actually, quite hilarious and capable of range in his portrayal of characters.
Best: Community on NBC/CityTV – NBC might have decided to put the show on hiatus mid-way through its current season, but the adventures of the study group at the fictional Greendale Community College continue to be the most inventive half-hour of television you’ll find on any of the big networks.
Joel McHale, Allison Brie, Danny Pudi and Donald Glover form the best parts of an ensemble cast that delivers comedy gold week after week. From making an entire episode about role-playing games, to an exploration of western film tropes via paintball, to even the more recent homage to Heart of Darkness (because it was way better than Apocalypse Now), Community came into its own in 2011 and deserves six seasons and a movie, even if it’s now nearer to the fate of shows like Arrested Development and Firefly.
Worst – Smallville finale on The CW – Filled with more plot holes than a Michael Bay film, the culmination of Superman’s ten-year coming-of-age journey made it feel like the Boy of Steel would never man up.
When it finally came time for Tom Welling’s emo-tending Clark Kent to put on the tights, all viewers got to see was a flying animation at a great distance – not even one shot in the full super-suit. Starting out with a Clark & Lois wedding that never finishes, the epilogue skipped ahead seven years to find Lois (Erica Durance) and Clark still unmarried. And what was with Chloe, her kid and that comic book? Does that mean everyone in their universe knows Clark Kent is Superman, working away at the Daily Planet?
An angry fan could go on. Thankfully, the show didn’t.
– South Park: always relevant with a little as 6 days to air, fearless satire and a stand alone animated series
– Parks n’ Recreation: hilarious and bold character development, and a great alternative to the office which had yet to recover from the loss of steve carrell
– American Dad: jumped ahead of the Seth MacFarlane pack long ago, Roger is a beacon of comic genius, and continues to cement itself as best franchise of all three.
– Children’s Hospital: always edgy, riddled with an obscene number of comedy cameos, and heading in to its 4th season for 2012. Thank god for Rob Corddry.
– Dark Matters (doc): great documentary released round halloween about dark, twisted and true tales from scientific history.
– and although I just started watching and only in 2nd season, Breaking Bad: Bryan Cranston’s ongoing lead is nothing short of spectacular and continues to impress even after 4 incredibly high intensity seasons (heading into its fifth in 2012)
Last week South Park took a stab at the #Occupy movement in the 1% episode; and as usual they hit the nail on the head in satirizing the inherent generalization of the 99%. With media posed to exploit any occupation they can find, South Park’s lesser known fast food hangout becomes the scene of #OccupyRedRobin in protest of the Presidential Fitness Test.
But all satire aside, the best part of this episode? It’s all about Cartman.
Read the rest of this entry
The latest episode of South Park helps to explain a phenomenon I’ve never personally understood: the ongoing obsession with musical theatre. I’d say Trey Parker’s well qualified to enlighten us… he’s won 9 Tonys. But more importantly, I learned why so many men put up with taking their women to musicals; the magic of subtext!
Starring my favourite adult South Park character Randy Marsh, Broadway Bro Down pits him against some of the most hardcore musical composers in the industry; and also reveals that despite recent events, Randy and Sharon’s marriage is stronger than ever… thanks to blow jobs. Oh, and vegans suck.