Friday, October 31, 2008

What I learned this Halloween:

1. Wearing a Svengoolie t-shirt is a great way to meet people (especially people from Berwyn!).
2. Popcorn balls, oddly enough, don't taste nearly as good as they did when I was twelve. I was disappointed.
3. The people who make the fake vampire teeth that promise you can "talk, eat, and drink comfortably" must have a strange definition of "comfortably."
4. Fake teeth that go over your normal teeth are like doubling the length of your normal teeth. I currently look like a vampire dweeb (which is oddly accurate, but not exactly what I was going for).
5. There is a surprising lack of Halloween-themed programming this year...maybe executives figure nobody's home to watch it??

Thursday, October 30, 2008

123456 Pokemon

And don't forget: Election Day is THIS TUESDAY, November 4th!

(It will make sense once you watch the video...)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Twilight TV Ad!!

I just saw this ON TV. It was exciting. I squealed. Loudly.


Three weeks, one and a half days...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Halloween is only 3 days away...'s time for some quick and easy Halloween costume ideas! They are broken up into 3 categories: Effortless, Little Effort, and Medium Effort.

Effortless (open your closet and pick something):
-Wear your pajamas
-School colors/gear (even gym uniform)
-Person with backwards head (wear your shirt the wrong way!)
-Street clothes and a good story (my favorite is "Batman on casual day")

Little Effort (one cheap accessory, plus stuff you've got at home):
-Vampire: plastic fangs are cheap, or if you prefer Vampirae Twilightus some body glitter will give you that inhuman glow. Dress all in black, or just wear regular clothes and say you're trying to "blend in" with the humans.
-Alien: antennae can be easily formed from an old wire hanger; use the "blending in" excuse to explain your lack of additional costume.
-Fashion Nightmare: this is a fun one, especially for girls/women. Break all the rules. Pull out that ugly sweater you never wear. Mix plaids and stripes. If you really want to get into it, hit up the secondhand stores for cheap, ugly clothes.
-Slasher victim: buy some fake blood. Smear it where appropriate.

Medium Effort (you may need to spend some money on this):
-Candy corn: White face paint, yellow shirt, orange (or brown) pants.
-"Carrie": Begin with a prom/formal dress (you can find one at secondhand stores) and add generous amounts of fake blood. *Bonus points to guys who use this one!*
-Hippie: wide pants, tie-dyed shirt; don't wash your hair for a few days (or get a long wig).
-Piano: A cardboard box, some paint, and a little time. Don't forget to cut some arm holes and one for your head (Hi, Andrew!)
-Snakes on a Plane: The cardboard box could easily become an airplane; add plastic snakes.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Halloweeeeeeeeeen Sceeeeeeeeeene!

No trick, it's a Halloween treat! (These are the jokes...) Johnny and I celebrate Halloween with a half-hour show, where we discuss Halloween movies, music, favorite costumes, and more! You can download it on iTunes, or from Podshow.

Also, I thought I'd clarify the Official Rules for the e-mail contest!
1. Submit an e-mail WITH A COMMENT ABOUT THE SHOW between October 27th and November 27th.
WRONG: Oooh, a contest! Gimme a prize! (These will be ignored, sorry).
RIGHT: I listened to your show, and I thought...insert comment here.
WRONG: OMG u r soo ghey! this Show suxx. I hope u die! (Trolls don't get prizes. They get sent to the trash).
RIGHT: Your podcast might be better if you tried to say "Um" less often. (CONSTRUCTIVE criticism is always appreciated =D)
2. One e-mail=one entry, up to five entries per e-mail address.
3. We're going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you're only sending e-mail from one address. Anyone sending from multiple addresses will be disqualified (within reason--if you send one from one address and one from another, that's fine. We just don't want one person sending us twenty e-mails under five names).
4. On or shortly after November 27, we will randomly select one e-mail address as the WINNER!
The winner will receive a one month, three-at-a-time subscription to Netflix! (ARV: $14.95). If you send them back quickly enough, you could probably watch a dozen movies in a month.
5. Comments on the blog ARE eligible, but ONLY if you provide either a Blogger link or an e-mail address (so we can contact you if you win).

Also, Video Revue celebrated its first anniversary on October 8th! In the next year, we will try very hard to do more than ten shows...Thanks to all of our listeners, new and old! And don't forget to e-mail us!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Twilight update!

I think it's safe to say that Twilight fans are super jazzed about the movie premiere--WHICH IS IN ONLY 30 DAYS!! I can say that without starting a comment war, right? *ducks*
(See previous post for more info).

SpikeTV had an "exclusive clip" as part of their "Scream 2008" special, which, as I learned, is like the Oscars for the Comic-Con crowd. They played it during the first half hour, which was good for me, but not so good for SpikeTV if they wanted the Twilight crowd to watch the entire special...We finally got to see more of the epic fight between James (Cam Gigandget, who introduced the clip) and Edward (Robert Pattinson...but you knew that already!). It was awesome, though I must say the new trailer did a better job of making me wish I had a time machine. But there were some insanely high jumps and people getting smashed into walls. It will undoubtedly look even better on a movie theater screen, versus my 19-inch TV.

In other Twilight news, Kaleb Nation (aka Twilight Guy) has officially completed half of the Twilight saga. He's moved on to Eclipse (book 3) and continues to astound me with his insight and hilarious Photoshopping skills. If you've never visited his blog, do. You'll be glad you did (check the right sidebar for the "Twilight Guy" button).

THIRTY DAYS AND COUNTING!!! I'd like to say that I'll be at the midnight premiere (at my local theater) but seeing as that's Thanksgiving weekend, I don't know whether I'll be able to.

Question for the readers: What songs do you recommend for a Halloween playlist? I think I've got most of the basics--Thriller, Monster Mash, Werewolves of London--so what are some of your favorite Halloween/creepy songs??

Monday, October 20, 2008

When fandom goes too far...

You may remember my frequent references to Moonlight and my disappointment over its untimely cancellation by CBS. I still think it was killed off way before its time, but that's not the point. "Moonlight" fans sometimes really put the "cult" in "cult following"--there were numerous fan-driven attempts to get another network to pick up the show, including a blood drive (Give blood. The vampires will thank you!) and various letter-writing campaigns. All very harmless, and the blood drive was definitely a good thing. But there's a dark side to all of this. True Moonlight fans felt that the fandom was a community, or a big family, and they were drawn to the fan sites like Moonlight Army and Moonlight Line. The latter was run by a woman named Lisa Gerry, screen name (alias) "Leeser."

At first, she was the champion for the "Renew Moonlight" cause; she had "insider contacts" (though the smart ones questioned how reliable they were) and insisted that there was still a chance that the show would be picked up by another station. One of her ideas was to buy ad space on buses in LA, to get the word out. One fan kindly donated a large sum of money to be used for the ad campaign (I won't go into specifics, but we're talking thousands of dollars here). There were no bus ads. The money was never seen again.

Edit: Apparently, the bus ads have appeared, but there is still some controversy as to what happened to the money. Leeser has claimed that $3k was in her purse when it was stolen (LESSON TO ALL: Don't give money to people who walk around with $3 thousand IN CASH...whether it's true or not, that's just stupid). There are also allegations that she pocketed the money earned at the Moonlight Convention (aptly abbreviated "MoonlightCon.") For more information, you can visit the Lisa Gerry website.

Thanks to those who corrected me; I am admittedly not as involved as some other Moonlight fans, and I am also prone to human error and bias. Also, my information came from "" which is also decidedly "anti-Leeser." I'm sure there are "pro-Leeser" sites out there, and if anyone would like to leave a link to such feel free. I didn't write this blog entry to start a controversy. If anything, I was writing to show the danger of getting too involved in anything. If this turns into a bitter argument, it will only prove my point. At some point, I realized I'd rather have a life.

It's logical to blame the one who gave the money to Leeser (who has been re-dubbed "Lesser" on some sites), but you have to understand that Moonlight went WAY beyond a TV show for a lot of the fans. It was probably a combination of many different things. Even before the show was canceled, it had a huge online following. Moonlight's cancellation was unexpected--a lot of the fans still blame CBS for leading us to believe the show would be renewed for a second season--and it really felt like we'd lost something special. Not as bad as a death in the family; maybe more like finding out your best friend is moving to Antarctica. Or Mars. We were all frantic, and I think a common reaction was to go through the five stages of grief. Our show was in danger, and we had to save it as quickly as possible.

The Internet can really bring people together. For better or for worse. Interestingly enough, Leeser's popularity started disappearing even before the fraud was discovered and publicized. At some point, most of the fans realized had reached "Acceptance"--the show is gone, it's not coming back, so make sure you buy the DVD set--but Leeser was still stuck somewhere between "Denial" and "Bargaining." She was seen as the leader of the fans who refused to believe that the show was over, and charged with creating false hope. Then the fraud came to light.

This is a textbook-case example of "Affinity Fraud":
Affinity fraud refers to investment scams that prey upon members of identifiable groups, such as religious or ethnic communities, the elderly, or professional groups. The fraudsters who promote affinity scams frequently are - or pretend to be - members of the group. They often enlist respected community or religious leaders from within the group to spread the word about the scheme, by convincing those people that a fraudulent investment is legitimate and worthwhile. Many times, those leaders become unwitting victims of the fraudster's ruse.

These scams exploit the trust and friendship that exist in groups of people who have something in common. Because of the tight-knit structure of many groups, it can be difficult for regulators or law enforcement officials to detect an affinity scam. Victims often fail to notify authorities or pursue their legal remedies, and instead try to work things out within the group. This is particularly true where the fraudsters have used respected community or religious leaders to convince others to join the investment.

The moral of our story is: Hmmm, that's a toughie.

"Don't give money to people you don't know"? Sounds good, but what constitutes "knowing" someone? If you've had numerous conversations over the Internet, and you know lots of useless personal information about someone (favorite movie, birthday, favorite bands) how different is that from the friends you talk to face-to-face?

"Don't give large sums of money to anyone"? Paranoid much??

I've got it: "Use extreme caution when giving money to people you meet online."

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Weekly Revue: The Second Chapter

Johnny and Monica watch...not much. We reflect on our busy lives, and review a concert with an unusual interpretation of the Beatles. Also, as everything in life comes back to Animaniacs, we discuss Volume 3, Disc 3 (say that 3 times fast!) of "Pinky and the Brain."
Download on iTunes, or from Podshow:

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Sunday, October 12, 2008

New Twilight trailer (re-posted)

I can now watch this without hyperventilating...

If this doesn't make you want to see the movie, NOTHING will.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Video Revue returns!

Hey to all of our loyal listeners (and you know who you are!), thanks for sticking with us through the long dry spell. We've got a new format for the show; rather than a longer show every other week (which ends up being once a month if we're lucky), we're going to do a 10-15 minute weekly show. You can download it from Podshow or on iTunes. This was actually recorded last Friday, but future episodes should be up on Tuesdays. We're also going to do longer shows whenever we have time (once a month if we're lucky).

What do you think of the new format? Love it? Hate it? Tell us!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Counting down the days...

The third and final Twilight trailer. I will reserve further comment until my thoughts are more coherent than "OMG OMG OMG OMG!"

EDIT 10-11-08: The video I posted was deleted from YouTube; I'll repost as soon as I find it again.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Vampire TV Show Rundown!

I did something similar to this about 5 or 6 months ago, but I thought I'd update it to accommodate the newest addition to the Vamp TV family. They go in chronological order, according to when they aired. So here goes my brief rundown for each show. I've also added a "Girl Power Rating" because I think it's interesting.

1. Forever Knight
When it was on: 3 seasons, from 1992-1996
What it is: Forever Knight follows an 800-year-old vampire named Nick Knight, the original vampire detective, along with an ME who knows his secret (Natalie) and Nick's human partner, Detective Schanke.
Why I love it: I giggle every time they say Schanke's name (pronounced like "Skanky") and the characters are all well-developed.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Give it some humor. Schanke provides the only comic relief.
Girl Power Rating: 4/5 Natalie speaks her mind; Nick's fellow vampire Jeannette really comes into her own during the second season, but Nat tends to end up in "save me, Nick!" situations. Still, overall very good for early '90s (pre-Buffy, no less!)

2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
When it was on: 7 seasons, from 1997-2003
What it is: Buffy Summers is the Chosen One, a girl with superpowers that allow (and require) her to slay the vampires and demons and crawling-from-hell things that invade her California town of Sunnydale. She's backed up by a rotating cast of sidekicks, including witches, a werewolf, vampires, and a British guy.
Why I love it: Amazing storylines, kick-butt action, and characters you really grow to fall in love with.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Have at least one love story that ended well. Joss Whedon (who is amazing) loves to take the characters we grow to love and kill them violently and tragically.
Girl Power Rating: 5/5 Buffy kicks some major bad-guy butt; basically, all of the women are smart and resourceful and never give up to wait for THE MEN to save them

3. Angel
When it was on: 5 seasons, from 1999-2004
What it is: Angel, Buffy's vampire-with-a-soul ex-boyfriend, moves to LA and gets his own show. More demon-fighting, world-saving action, with trademark Whedon humor and tragic endings.
Why I love it: More great characters (another British guy!) including several Buffy crossovers, and a demon named Lorne who runs a karaoke bar.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Not kill off half of the main characters in Season 5. What's up with that??
Girl Power Rating: 5/5 Cordelia, better known as the airhead rich-girl snob from Buffy, really comes into her own after inheriting psychic visions; Fred, who in a "typical" show would be vampire chow in the first ten minutes, is another resourceful, intelligent woman who can, in her own way, be a formidable evil-fighter.

4. Blood Ties
When it was on: 22 episodes (either 1 or 2 seasons, depending on who you talk to) from 2007-2008
What it is: Vicki Nelson, private investigator, teams up with (exceedingly hot) vampire Henry Fitzroy to fight the powers of darkness.
Why I love it: Kyle Schmid (who plays Henry), some great storylines, Kyle Schmid, lots of humor, Kyle Shcmid, great chemistry between the characters...Kyle Schmid. Two random facts: Christina Cox (who plays Vicki) is left-handed (like me!) and the series is based on a series of fantastic books by Tanya Huff.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Make it more consistent. The characters always had great chemistry, but the individual storylines were either great or awful.
Girl Power Rating: 4.5/5 Vicki is always kick-butt fantastic, but Coreen tends to end up as a hostage. Of course, that could be because Coreen tends to go looking for trouble; and when she's not getting captured, she makes some valuable research contributions.

5. Moonlight
When it was on: One season, 16 episodes, from 2007-2008
What it is: Vampire PI Mick St. John solves crimes, with the help of his undead buddy Josef and Mick's possible-girlfriend Beth.
Why I love it: The best soundtrack I've EVER heard in a TV show, sizzling chemistry between the characters, and a love story that played like an extended romantic comedy (right up to the happy ending).
If I could change one thing, I'd: Give Beth some fight scenes. Come on, people, this is the twenty-first century! Girls can slay the dragons too (Just ask Buffy. Or Willow, or Cordy, or Fred, or Vicki, or...)
Girl Power Rating: 3/5 (see above)

6. True Blood
When it was on: New show! It began fall '08; this week is episode 5.
What it is: In a world where vampires have revealed themselves to the public, the show is set in the small Louisiana town of Bon Temps. It follows telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse, vampires Bill and Eric, and (SPOILER ALERT!) shapeshifters and other supernatural creatures (who haven't come out into the open).
Why I love it: Also based on a book series, this time from Charlaine Harris; they're staying very faithful to the book--always a plus--as well as developing a lot of the minor characters. I particularly like what they've done with Sookie's friend Tara.
If I could change one thing, I'd: Re-do the vampires' fangs; they're on the wrong teeth, too close together. They all look like Bunnicula. If I could change two things, I'd put it on a network other than HBO (one that would not allow the softcore porn scenes).
Girl Power score: 4/5 Sookie fights; Tara is a wonderfully dynamic character. At the same time, women are sometimes objectified and the season arc follows the unsolved murder of several women who were sleeping with vampires.

There was also Dark Shadows, which was way before my time, and another show from the nineties called Kolchak; I've never seen those and so will reserve judgment.