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Friday, March 10, 2006  

SNL Season 31 ... REVEALED!

When was the last time that you heard any of your friends reset "There's Something About Mary"? It seems that I can't walk 50 yards without hearing someone quote "Old School", "Anchorman" or "Wedding Crashers", but your Uncle Grambo can't remember the last time anyone casually dropped some "TSAM" science into a conversation. Which is a shame, really, because that film is a certified CLASSIC. I'm talkin' "Airplane" / "Three Amigos" / "Fletch" / "Caddyshack" / "Dirty Work" kind of classic. But, for some odd reason, the Farrelly Brothers' crowning achievement is diminishing in buzzworthiness as time goes by, when you would expect its Quotable Quotient to be increasing. Your Uncle Grambo has got some theories on why, but I'll save those for my book.

Anyway, I mention all that because Matt Dillon's portrayal of Pat Healy is perhaps the single most underrated comedic performance put on celluloid in the 90s. Which is why you should definitely make some time to watch (or at least DVR) this weekend's episode of "Saturday Night Live". But, as we always do here on Fridays, I'll leave the pre-show commenting to the bodaciously bovs duo of Nummer and H-Bomb ...

Episode 14: Matt Dillon / Arctic Monkeys (3/11/06)

Fresh off "Crash" snagging Best Picture, Matt Dillon will try his hat at live comedy. Dillon proved in 1998's "There's Something About Mary" he can be funny, and he's also shown throughout his career he can play everything from troubled youth to con men. This range should allow him to easily handle the variety of characters SNL Will no doubt throw his way.

As usual, the uneven writing is still something to worry about. After being treated to a few months of significant decreases in recurring characters, most of last week's Natalie Portman episode felt stuck in the past. It really seems like Lorne is having trouble balancing the talent of his young featured players, giving the veterans their final tours of duty and adapting to the overnight sensation of quick and dirty Digital Shorts. This is surprising since he's been in similar situations countless times over the show's 31 year history.

I have to say Arctic Monkeys are also sort of a toss up. FOW favorite MacKenzie Wilson over at AMG points out that these English youngsters received their first guitars for Christmas just a few years Ago and from there "made practicing an obsession, memorizing hits by the White Stripes and the Vines." AMG's full review of their debut album takes this one step further by saying "Arctic Monkeys are reworking the sounds of a revival without any knowledge - or even much interest - in the past". SNL just played the youth card last week with Fall Out Boy's energetic appearance, so let's see if the novelty hasn't worn thin yet.

I think that Matt Dillon is going to do a great job as this week's host of SNL. He's not only a very capable actor, but he seems to have a laid-back quality about him that will no doubt result in him just wanting to have a good time, regardless of potential ratings. It doesn't hurt, either, that he starred in what has been one of the most talked about comedies to date wearing probably some of the biggest prop teeth ever shown on the big screen.

As for Arctic Monkeys, they are one of those bands that I've heard of but know next to nothing about. Doing a little online research, it looks like they're young, they're English and have been dubbed "the next best thing" by NME magazine. Quite a resume. I just hope they sound better than Fall Out Boy from last week's show.

BONUS: While you're at it, check out their review of last week's Portman / Fall Out Boy episode. Robvs.

posted by Uncle Grambo |
Thursday, March 09, 2006  

David Cross: The Hipster Zelig

The question isn't where's David Cross these days, it's where ISN'T David Cross these days. When he's not appearing on the silver screen alongside Amanda Bynes in "She's The Man", he's behind the camera directing music videos for The Black Keys. When he's not being interviewed by Jim Sheridan on MTV2's Subterranean, he's in the studio throwing it down as a voice actor in "Curious George". And when he's not cameoing in music videos by The New Pornographers or The Strokes, he's holding court at Foxy Jess' birthday party. Wake me up if I was sleeping, but can someone remind me again how exactly David Cross managed to ascend all the way to Hollywood's B-List?

... (crickets) ...

No, really! I'm asking because I honestly don't have an answer. For a man who is neither particularily handsome nor funny (admit it, he rode Odenkirk's coattails on "Mr. Show"), you can't swing a cat in any of the lower 48 without without hittin' the bespectacled patron saint of hipster how-to. I guess what I'm wondering is this ... what is it that separates him from people like Michael Ian Black or Michael Showalter, guys who are equally (if not more) funny and conventionally better looking? How come Black is forced to quip the light fantastic on "I Love Discontinued Toys From The Mid 80s" while Cross is so popular that women are willing to sleep with his doppelgangers? Color your Uncle Grambo perplexed.

"Really busy. Need Space" So sayeth Adam Levine. Translation? Welcome to Dumpsville, baby. Population Jessica Simpson. Huh, I wonder why he capitalized the "s" in "Space"?

Zombie Honeymoon. On DVD no less! MmmmBest.

JTL asks, "Does Alison Goldfrapp dream of electric sheep?"

Your Uncle Grambo will cop to the fact that, of late, SPIN hadn't been delivering the same sort of cover-to-cover hottness that they were in, say, 2004. And anyone who follows the trades knew that SPIN had been on the block forever and a day before it finally got sold last week. But still, it came as a total shock to me that the new owners decide to cash in on all of their brand equity by replacing their smokingly sexy editrix supreme Sia Michel with Andy Pemberton who, by all accounts, is a veritable jackanapes on wheels. As a consequence, both Chuckles Klosterbest and Marc Spitz have decided to part ways with the magazine that they built up from the flaming wreckage it was when Michel took the reins back in 2002.

When exceptional talent like that leaves the building, those remaining are forced to answer where that leaves the mag, its subscribers and, most importantly, its advertisers. I say "most importantly" in reference to the advertisers because that's clearly who the new editors are courting by hiring Pemberworst. While there's no doubting that he played an instrumental role in launching Blender a few years back, give me two minutes and I could find a handful of peeps who would agree with me that that book is the most unreadable music magazine on newssstands today. Sure, RS is tired and old and really should be taken out back and put out of its mizz (Old Yeller stizz), but Blender blows balls in a way that makes the readers of Playgirl jealous. There's no two ways about it. Wurst.

The guy who did "House Of Cosbys" got SURRRRRVED with a big fat C&D from Bill Cosby's attorneys. Good thing those brosnans never read So Sayeth The Peabs! [via Fishbowl NY]

If you don't shave your pubes, we're gettin' divorced! Best prenups evs. [via Tha Clizzark]

Trust me, if you had to spend a few hours entertaining Nelson Mandela, you bump a few rizzies too. I bet that dude tells the WORST stories. Ferreals, I can guarantee you that he's not gonna roll up to you and say, "So, did I ever tell ya about the time me and Biko did a bunch of horse and had a three-way with Angie Dickinson at Studio 54?"

Speaking of the droogs, has anybody seen Condescending Baggins in oh, say, the last 96 hours or so? Because the column he penned on Sunday about the Oscars was the most incomprehensiblely insane thing I've experienced since watching Damon Packard's "Reflections Of Evil" a few weeks back. Allz your Uncle Grambo knows is that Mitchie better lay off the magic pixie dust as the one-year anniversary of his bogus MSU Final Four story approaches.

Dave Eggers hearts Free Darko.

Oh yeah, one last thing. I know that Page Six isn't exactly the most reliable rag, but your Uncle Grumbo is having a hard time believing their "Amanda Bynes Is A Teenage Alkie" story that ran yesterday. Although my man Robair over at Amanda Bynes Now confirms that Bynes was in Boston last week, this incident just seems really out of character for Bynes. It sounds to me like a story that was planted by someone with an agenda. What agenda? Well, I'm afraid that's a question that your Uncle can't answer. Allz I know is that my gal Bynes looked stunning at last night's premiere of "She's The Man", and the big release date is now but a mere eight days away. Stay tuned for more deets, y'all. DEVELOPING!

[pic via Pop Sugar]

posted by Uncle Grambo |
Wednesday, March 08, 2006  

Being John Malkovich Tom Bosley

After being escorted through the proverbial velvet ropes and closing out this year's Blowout in the VIP section¹ of Hamtramck's Knights of Columbus Hall, your Uncle Grambo felt like he had just spent a few days in a Shotz Beer fueled fever dream of Howard Cunningham. While that may sound like a less than enjoyable headspace to occupy, the truth of the matter is that it was one of the more bovsalicious weekends I've had during the second half of the `00s. You can keep your SXSWs, your CMJs, your (now postponed) MC²s ... I'll take the Blowout any time.

Today's Metro Times includes a thorough recap of the weekend's festivities — it even features a pic lensed by none other than your Uncle Grambo ... take that, Coombe! Personally, my fave moment of the weekend was introducing Loftus to Koppitz (pictured below); thankfully, the prophecies DIDN'T come true and the universe DIDN'T collapse upon itself when the most-knowledgeable music writer I know met the most-knowledgeable film expert that I know. But trust me, watching these two shoot the breeze for a few minutes was epic on a level that only a picture can capture.

My lowlight of the weekend, bar none, was Thursday night's performance of Marie And Francis. The MT was very kind to these hipster enfants when they called them "fawns from the womb"; in my eyes, they put together a show² that spit in the face of everything The Blowout stands for. The Blowout isn't about coasting on cred, it's about recognizing and supporting those who have paid their dues in sweat and tears. It's not about being disaffected, it's about caring. And not to get all JFK on your asses, but it's not about what the audience can do for the bands, it's about what the bands can do for the audience -- PARTICULARILY during a weekend where fans are forced to make tough decisions on which band they're going to go out and support. Marie And Francis performed as if they weren't aware of any of this. They were jaunty, sure, but they were also out of tune and out of sync. You know a show is going bad when even the band members start rolling their eyes in disbelief at the ineptitude of the others (in this case, the foxxxy bass player whose SHADOW even looked bored). All that said, there is a simple remedy to cure the symptoms that plague this band: spend less time spinning Prince songs at Oslo and more time at band practice. Do this, and everything should work out a-okay.

The singular lowlight aside, this was a weekend to rival all other weekends. Congrats and thanks go out to the performers, the organizers, the townies, the venues and the FANS for putting on such a fanfargingtastic time. Special props should be issued to The Fags (for putting on the best show of the weekend), to Coke Dick Motorcycle Awesome Coney Island (for being so aggro), to Loretta Lucas (for being so best) and to Tony Blowout (for bringing it all home). See y'all next year. Word.

¹ I use that term loosely and fondly.
² I use that term loosely and not-so-fondly.

posted by Uncle Grambo |
"So THAT'S what a 'pet peeve' is? Oh man, I've been misusing that word for YEARS!"
— Likeable lunkhead (and RW:SD alum) Brad, after learning what a pet peeve really is
be like mark

in the name of the world (EP) - holy fire


the greatest wrestling stars of the 80s


the da vinci code - dan brown
adventures w/disposable income
date: 3.4.05
source: Best Buy
amount: $164.28
(1) western digital MyBook external 160GB hard drive
(1) "greatest wrestling stars of the 80s" dvd

snl season 31
by Nummer & H-Bomb
where's grambo?
mar 12: stereolab @ majestic
mar 16 - 19: 4th anniversary bachelor party @ TFH (chi-town)
mar 31: coldplay wsg richard ashcroft @ united center (chi-town!)
apr 7: cyhsy @ blind pig
apr 13: strokes @ state theatre
apr 15: metric @ st. andrews
apr 18: the sounds / morningwood @ st. andrews
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