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VIDEO BLOG: Is “The Office” Using My Material?

October 22, 2010 3 comments

While watching the October 20/2010 episode [S07-E05], I noticed a clip where Michael, Dwight, and Jim enter an elevator, and Michael presses the “close door” button, only to be met with an unobliging button.  A frustrated and agitated Michael exclaims “Why is there a door close button if it doesn’t even close the door?!?”

Immediately upon hearing/seeing this, I was reminded of an old blog I wrote earlier this year on January 20/2010, in which I wrote,

Does it infuriate anyone else when they go into an elevator, select their desired floor, press the “door close” button ( –> <–), and the door DOESN’T CLOSE?!?!?  What in the world is the function of this button if it doesn’t perform the only logical duty its pictorial reference indicates?  Why install a button to tease people?  Is there a guy hiding in the rafters keeling over laughing every time someone presses the button and gets mildly annoyed while they have to wait for the elevator door to close on its own?

Let’s go to the video:

Now while I realize I’m probably not the only person to ever make this infuriating observation about the elevator button, but I do know I brought it up before they wrote it into their show.  What do you think?  Do you think I have a case?

Finale Frenzy! The Office vs Parks & Rec, LOST, Seinfeld, and Canada 2’s IIHF Early Exit; In 3-D!!

May 21, 2010 3 comments

So Canada 2 got bounced from the IIHF World Championships, and Corey Perry is eliminated from the DCC.  Anybody care?  The only thing worth bothering with is that Canada will probably lose some ground in the official world rankings for hockey, after we reclaimed it so awesomely in the Olympics.  Meh, we still rule at hockey.  Did anyone really not think Ray Whitney was going to lead us to international glory against Ovechkin, and every other player who was mad they lost at the Olympics, when all our good players were quite content with what they already accomplished for us?

Chicago’s manhandling of San Jose has awoken Joe Thornton from his comatose state, but is it already too late?  Answer: yes.  Montreal decided they like winning better than losing too.  Interesting hockey coming up…

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So The Office ended its most recent season Thursday night.  All year, I was left with a lingering thought of this, one of my favourite shows: I wish the Office writers turned Parks & Recreation’s writers hadn’t given P&R all the good scripts and storylines this season.  It really was not The Office’s best season.  Though the shows’ writers will deny it, P&R is clearly the Pawnee, Indiana version of The Office.   For whatever reason, Rashida Jones, the former Karen Filippelli on The Office  who ended up as the Manager of Dunder-Mifflin Utica, for some reason changed her name to Ann Perkins, cut her hair, abandoned her child and husband, moved to Indiana, became a nurse, and met and befriended Leslie Knope the female, Indiana version of Michael Scott.  There she also met April, the female Dwight Schrute; Mark, the Indiana Jim Halpert; Tom, the Andy Bernard of Indian descent; Jerry, the fat Toby; and Donna, the large, African-American Kelly.  Surely you can make a few other connections yourself if you watch both shows.  Too bad it means that one show has to get mediocre.  Maybe that’s at least partially why Steve Carell isn’t coming back after next season…

With DVR’s, PVR’s, and torrent downloading, is anyone even watching TV anymore?  It’s great to record TV and watch it when you like, but you still have to fast forward the commercials.  To my wife and I, downloading torrents is definitely the way to go.  You can’t watch it immediately because you have to wait for the show to be uploaded, but no one’s doing that anyway, hence all the D and P V-R’ing.   As far as mindless entertainment goes, there’s nothing like watching your favourite 22 minute episode  commercial free.  The only lame part is that you have to wait a week for new stuff.  One of the best moves I ever made (and I give full credit to my wife for this) is starting to watch LOST this way after four seasons had already gone by.  We could string together 3 or 4 episodes together in one sitting, and never be left dangling off any dramatic cliffs unless we chose to.  Now unfortunately, we’ve caught up to speed; luckily right in time for the big finale of which has no chance in satisfying anyone in tying up all the series’ loose ends to viewers’ satisfaction.  Much like Seinfeld’s finale, and Dr. Dre’s Detox album, the hype has created an unobtainable contentment standard.  When you think about Seinfeld’s finale from a logistical standpoint, where did you think Jerry, George, Elaine and Kramer – the most cynical and judgemental fictional characters on the planet (albeit the most hilarious as well) – deserved to end up, besides in prison, with each other?  I have a feeling LOST’s finale is going to make sense in the end, but the majority of people will not be happy with it.    

If you’re looking for the BEST TV TORRENT DOWNLOAD SITE IN THE WORLD, look no further than eztv.it .  Posts every day’s new episode torrents, and they’re always virus-free.  If you live anywhere besides the USA, don’t waste your time with hulu.com , no matter what it says you’ll be able to watch.  I want to hack and destroy hulu.com every time it tells me my video can’t be displayed in my region (note to security people reading this: I’m not  actually capable of doing either of those).  I can watch U.S. shows on TV, download U.S. shows from the internet, but can’t stream them from hulu.com because I live outside the U.S. That seems fair.

And lastly, HD and Blu-Ray, Plasma and LCD all seem a little low-tech now that 3D TV’s exist, don’t they?  The technology train sure has chugging along the last few years; this “Digital Age” that we’re living in may end up being the continually the awesomest thing ever, or the complete and utter death of itself and modern commerce.  What’s that? You bought a 50” HD plasma TV last year for $5000 that’s now obsolete?  That’s a shame…

Jon’s Right, TLC Needs to Subtract “Jon & Kate Plus 8.”

October 3, 2009 10 comments

I can’t believe I wrote a blog about Jon & Kate Plus 8.

Since the introduction of “Reality Shows (circa 1992, with the first instalment of ‘Survivor’),” the definition of “Reality” has nearly been re-written.  At some point, the worldwide viewing audience bought into this new theory that reality no longer meant “things that actually happen”; but instead that it meant shows replacing professional actors with amateurs, dropping them in a forest, house, or some form of abnormal living quarters, making them play stupid games with each other, vote each other out of that place, and networks hoping their cast created enough drama within themselves to captivate an audience for an entire season.  A few good video editors make a difference too.

Eventually, reality shows began to surface that were about real people andGosselin family their real life situations.  Obviously it did help that some of these situations were unique (see: “The Man Whose Arms Exploded”, “World’s Strongest Boy”, etc).  One show that most of us are familiar with now is “Jon & Kate Plus 8.” 

You don’t even have to have watched the show at this point; if you have a TV, the internet (you’re reading this, you have it), eyes and a brain that are capable of interpreting words and images on a magazine cover, or even just functional ears, you’ve caught wind of this show somewhere along the line.  Personally, I blame my wife for my introduction. 

mad kateBesides the fact that the couple bore 8 children, it’s just a show of them getting through their day.  Unfortunately, that’s not why you’ve heard of it.  “Jon & Kate Plus 8” became TLC’s highest rated show upon infidelity allegations, and the aftermath that has entailed.  For whatever reason, people have dug their claws into who cheated on who, who’s right and wrong, who the victim is, who the worse parent is, and generally every available factoid of a 10 year marriage that was dissolved in 4 seasons (despite a vow renewal episode).

From a business standpoint, I’m sure TLC couldn’t be happier.  Ratings = Advertisers = Merchandising = S’s with vertical lines through them.  The Gosselin’s got an outlandishly big home and property, and a probably a life’s financial setup to match.  But isn’t there some clause or fine print in that production contract that is concerned with the PLUS 8 faction of the equation?  Wouldn’t most people normally be put in jail for photographing and videotaping children the way and amount the Gosselin kids are? While these kids didn’t need to see their parents’ marriage collapse in the first place, can someone from that network not make the decision that those kids don’t need the whole world knowing about it, and asking them about it for the rest of their (already young) lives?  Divorce is hard enough on all members of a family without a televised audience.  Should morality not win out over ratings and dollars at some point?

Whether you like him or you hate him, Jon Gosselin said the most intelligentjon_gosselin thing anyone in that camp has said throughout the whole controversy.  The show needs to stop.  Whether you think it was because he was being cut from the title of the show, because of his diminished role in the filming, he wasn’t happy with compensation, or whatever you feel his motivation was; finally someone said what needed to be said.  This show is no longer beneficial or healthy for that family, and it needs to be removed from the air, at least for the good of the kids that both parents claim to be wholly devoted to.  This family’s issues need to be dealt with outside of the limelight, and behind closed doors; and with any luck they won’t turn out as the next Maculay Culkin’s or Dustin Diamond’s of the world. 

The problem with real life reality shows is that the people being filmed have to continue on with their lives after the camera stops rolling.  There’s no characters, scripts, re-shoots, or escape of any kind.  If two adults have chosen to subject their existences to this level of scrutiny, then so be it; but something is wrong when a child still gaining his or her own autonomy, let alone 8 of them, has to participate just because he was born into a family that just so happens to be newsworthy.  A court of law rarely will take a child’s testimony because they can be so easily influenced by others; I am sceptical of the claims by both the network and parents that the kids want the show to go on, or even if they know that they have a choice in the matter.

We are not without guilt either; I mean, someone is buying those tabloids, spiking those ratings, and fuelling a need for more.  There’s about 5 other shows on TV I know I’d rather watch; good, old-fashioned fictional situational comedies with paid professional actors and well written scripts.  Something tells me that if the Gosselin’s had the chance to shut the world out for one night, sit down as a family and watch an episode of “The Office” together instead of themselves, things might be a little different.  Okay, the kids wouldn’t get the humor, but you get the picture.  Bring back fake TV, these reality shows have run their course!

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