Archive for October, 2008

Pushing Daisies: “Dim Sum Lose Some”

29 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Barack Obama secured the votes of every fan of Pushing Daisies the moment he declined ABC’s offer of airtime for the Obama Half-Hour Flower Power Variety Hoe Down. Although I don’t know if the twenty or thirty of us still watching this marvelous little exercise in quirkiness are enough for him to be picking china patterns just yet. Speaking of china patterns…

One of the small pleasures of this show is seeing how the vivid palettes are manifested in costume and set decisions. I normally wouldn’t gush about a cowboy shirt or an earth tone sweater, but look in the image above how Ned’s shirt ties in the red lacquered finishes of the restaurant, Chuck’s dress, and even the fan in her hair. Note how the two-tone sweater Emerson’s wearing picks up the beige and goldleaf accents on the walls behind them and the pattern on Chuck’s dress. Think back to earlier in the episode when Chuck wore a bright red coat.

Every detail is carefully considered, right down to the Chai Emerson’s wearing with around his neck.

Read the rest of this entry »

Homer J. is one suave bastard

29 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

“We” love Mad Men so much around here that “we’re” going to post this bit of Simpson-y goodness for y’all. From next week’s “Treehouse of Horror XIX”.

Mad Men: “Meditations on an Emergency”

27 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Like a nautilus shell, we’ve spiraled out over 13 episodes, but finally circled back on ourselves, bigger, stronger, and more beautiful than before.

No, let’s try this instead. Matthew Weiner is composing and conducting a symphony, each of the players his instruments. As it is a modern symphony, he is unrestrained in choosing his instrumentation. Representing tradition, Roger and Bert are his woodwind section: Roger a high, melodic, occasionally erratic oboe and Bert a reliable, confident bassoon. The junior admen – Paul, Harry, and Ken – are a chorus of brass. Sal, poor sweet Sal, picks out a simple line on the tenor sax, unaware of the world of opportunities open to him if only he were to play with soul.

Peggy and Betty are dueling cellos. Each can be bright and lively and each can tear apart the heart of the men in their lives.

Pete, as tone deaf and tuneless a man as ever there was, beats out a rhythm on the drums. While he lacks subtlety, his timing is solid and he pounds out a beat consistently.

Don, he is the pianoforte. The most versatile of traditional instruments, he is percussion and string, rhythm and melody.

Read the rest of this entry »

Jon Hamm hosts SNL

26 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Jon Hamm hosted the old warhorse SNL last night and I didn’t know what to expect. As expected, there was a lame Mad Men sketch, made only barely palatable by the presence of Elizabeth Moss and John Slattery, but whether Hamm could do comedy or not was up in the air. Plus, with Amy Poehler on the verge of dropping Will Arnett’s love bundle…

Oh, she dropped.1 With musical guest Coldplay, that sadly meant more faux-angsty music so gay that it makes me feel like a red-stater when I jam out to West Side Story. But they had to do something to plug up Amy’s crack.

Read the rest of this entry »

  1. I’ve got Saturday Night Live Poehler-Arnett in the babyname pool. []

Pushing Daisies: “Frescorts”

22 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Sorry he was unable to write a review for the previous episode, the Blog Maker made a silent vow never to miss one again.

Yeah, really. Sorry ’bout that. For the tens of you who come by, here’s my drive-by of last week: at first it seems incredibly bold to dispense with all the Lily-is-your-mother NUNsense in the third episode of season two, until you realize it was probably slated to go down late in the strike-shortened season one. But it’s out there and it’s now time for Olive and Chuck to figure out their friendship.

Which, I might add, is a lot easier when you’re not stuck in a locker with someone who uses freesia hair detangler.

Read the rest of this entry »

‘Charlie Jade’ recap: ‘Ouroboros’

21 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Charlie told me once, everybody breaks. But he never did. Not once. – Karl Lubinsky

And so the story of Charlie Jade, a story one half-hour in the future, comes to a close. A bittersweet ending for sure – there was a lot of story left to tell – but a satisfying end to twenty hours of mystery and intrigue. But before we get started breaking it down, I’m going to suggest you go back and watch it again. Trust me when I tell you: even if you think you followed the episode, you didn’t. In fact, if you think you got it the first time through, you *really* didn’t. Go watch again. I’ll wait.

There you go. Now, you should be ready for this discussion. At least I hope it all made more sense the second time through. If not, you may want to try out the episode commentary at In particular, did you notice at the halfway mark that time was bent back on itself? Every moment with Charlie takes place after he’s entered linkspace, trying to remember what it is he is supposed to do. Scenes without Charlie occur before that, in the reference frame of the other players.

Let’s dig in.

Read the rest of this entry »

Mad Men: “The Mountain King”

19 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Don has nearly come through the other side of the hero’s quest. Last week’s sojourn to the desert saw him tempted by worldly pleasures which he tasted but did not succumb to. In the end, his fever broke and he sought out the one person who could guide him back onto the right path.

Turns out everyone was right guessing who Don called. It was a former wife (sort of) and it was the Real Don Draper’s™ wife. It was the woman in the used car dealership and it was another pretty blond. It was his savior and his mother.

Read the rest of this entry »

‘Charlie Jade’ recap: “Flesh”

14 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. – Matthew 26:41

It’s all over, right? Charlie’s come back to Jasmine – and just as quickly realized he belongs in Beta – 01′s out of jail, and Essa’s in shackles. Everything is right with the verses. So why, I must ask, is that countdown clock still running? The Vexcor link countdown clock that 01 now controls.

Read the rest of this entry »

Presidential Debate #3

13 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

This is it, everyone. The third and final debate of the 2008 Presidential campaign. Let’s keep it fun, let’s keep it interesting, and let’s try to be fair and balanced.1 Remember: it’s just the future of the free world; there’s no reason to get our panties in a bunch.

So come on back right here, Wednesday night at 9pm EDT. Better still, click on through to the rest of the post and sign up for an email reminder.
Read the rest of this entry »

  1. Crap. I’ve been served for infringing on Rupert’s trademark. []

Mad Men: “The Jet Set”

12 October 2008
by R.A. Porter

What started 10 episodes ago, with a copy of “Meditations in an Emergency”, appears to be coming to a head in one more week as Dick Whitman pays a call on his past. Director Phil Abraham framed the penultimate shot of Don on the couch in Palm Springs as a mirror-image of the reverse angle of Don that ends the opening credits. As surely as Mad Men is about Don Draper, next week will be about his alter ego.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. There was a beautiful hour of television between those two shots.

Read the rest of this entry »

Subscribe to this Blog
Subscribe in a reader

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Facebook Blog Networks