The Friday Hot Sheet

Don't call it a comeback -- but the Hot Sheet has returned. Of all the features that have sorta been tried here over the years, this is the one I actually used to look forward to the most. Unfortunately, my Flintstonian methods of assembling these things every week tended to make it sort of a hassle to get things out on time, especially when I had actual work to to at my job. But now we're back, and looking to make a new habit out of this thing -- a better one this time around.

Anyways, it's been a wild week for everyone -- especially with the cold snap that's swept in most everywhere in the country. Of course even the harshest of winter storms isn't ever enough to stop people from being idiots, and this week was no exception -- as everyone from Jay Leno to Colt McCoy did their best to get our attention with their antics.

So before the world turns into a giant ice cube right before our eyes -- here are this weeks risers and fallers, and the buzz as it looks from here.
Jersey ShoreYeah, yeah I know -- but really, what did you expect from me? Or from any of the hordes of fans that the show has gained. Trash TV might be a collective stain on our culture, but for those of us who unabashedly love it, this is the best thing to come along since Flavor Flav cashed his first paycheck from VH1. The key with these things isn't to take them all that seriously, and laugh at everyone involved -- which by the way is waay to easy when you start dealing with the Guidos on this show. The weirdest part about it though is that even though the cast members are all half-witted narcissists who represent the absolute worst that club culture has to offer, there's something oddly likable about them. Or to put it another way -- as much as you're tuning in to see them all fall flat on their over-tanned and hairsprayed faces, the best reality shows are the ones that have you somehow rooting for them at the same time. And for whatever reason, even with their awful taste in music and ridiculous ideas about fashion, somewhere in each episode you really do hope one of those skanks they bring back to the house will eventually get into the hottub (well, all except for Snooki -- who's honestly more fun to watch when all of her best laid plans go to the dogs).
The lack of a playoff in College FootballI know, I know -- it's like beating a dead horse, but there were 34, count 'em -- thirty-four bowl games this year. I really only watched the marquee ones, and half the time I was bored senseless. Why? Because even when the game was competitive you knew in the end the result was essentially meaningless. Regardless of who was playing, it was hard not to find yourself wondering if the team that won was any better than the teams that had the good fortune to end up in the championship. All of which came into harsh focus when the actual championship game took place -- which for almost three and a half quarters was the most boring game of them all. No disrespect to Alabama, who put in a solid effort on both sides of the ball to win -- but I for one feel like that Boise State team might have had a shot at beating them. Something we'll never really get a chance to find out, unlike the 33 other game results none of us bothered to watch.
Dwayne JohnsonDude, what is going on with you? The Tooth Fairy!? Another friggin kids movie? Ok, I get that providing voice talent for an animated feature like Planet 51 is an easy paycheck in Hollywood these days, but didn't you just do that Escape From Witch Mountain Thing? And the Football Player who has to learn how to raise the cute little girl movie right before that? It's as if Disney has embarrassing photos of the guy somewhere. Sure, the Rock issn't the world's greatest actor, or even the best action hero we've seen in recent years -- but there are vampire movies coming out this week featuring Ethan friggin' Hawke, for chrissakes. Look, what I'm trying to say here is that we're living in a world where the majority of the top grossing, non-Avatar action films in the past few years have all starred Hugh Jackman -- and yet right over here is an already proven commodity who's instead choosing to make a family comedy with Julie Andrews and Billy Crystal. I understand that when you find something that works, you try and stick with it -- but is this really the best path for your career?
DaybreakersSpeaking of vampire movies featuring Ethan Hawke -- this opens up this weekend, and although I have my concerns that it will turn out to be yet another formulaic action/drama posing as an intelligent twist on the basic vampire plotline -- it looks pretty good. Plus, I'm always sort of drawn to these stories that sort of flip the concept of the monster movie around the way this one looks like it's trying to -- all the while realizing that the temptation is far too easy for it to turn into a cliche where everyone sort of realizes their way of life is wrong and decides to start acting more like ..Ethan. As much as I enjoyed watching it, Avatar frequently wandered into that territory, and if it weren't for the awesome visuals and amazing battle scenes at the end could have easily ended up being nothing more than a 3-hour remake of Dances With Wolves. Fortunately, James Cameron is far too savvy a filmmaker to let that happen. Something I can't be sure of when I finally get a chance to see Daybreakers.
Jay LenoYou know what works really great? The camaraderie that helps tie The Daily Show to The Colbert Report. Even though the shows are aimed at similar audiences, they're very different in their deliveries and styles -- so that sort of unofficial link between them, even when it takes the form of that little 30 second handoff they do between episodes really helps then work as two sides of the same coin. You don't hear people getting all pissy about one of those two shows being better or worse than the other. In a perfect world, there might be a similar kinship between whatever the heck Jay Leno is trying to do and Conan O'Brien's patiently-awaited turn at helming The Tonight Show. And yet what it's become is a sloppy-handed mess of corporate alliances and time-slot shifting -- in which Leno has been marketed and advertised to death for a show that's on at a weird hour and has steadily been shrinking in audience, and a Conan O'Brien show that still has yet to find it's real stride, but has had to shift time slots again and again as the network continues to bend over backward for whatever untold reason to appease Leno's desire to get his old time slot back. But what NBC doesn't seem to get is that the end result is that people are sort of fading away from both shows. I honestly don't know why Conan continues to put up with it. Surely there's another network that would love to have his services at a more serviceable hour. They need to get it figured out soon, though. Even Brett Farve thinks this whole ordeal is stupid.
Sometimes the lessons the Internet teaches us are hard. Such was the case at this year's Fiesta Bowl. In an anticipated matchup between Boise State and TCU there was plenty to see and talk about -- but in a web world that thrives on snark, the game was surprisingly lacking in topics to jump all over -- or at least it was until halftime rolled around and FOX made one of the premier mistakes any college football broadcast can make, which is focusing extra attention on the marching bands. With their TV screens suddenly filled wall to wall with band geeks, the sharks began circling on twitter as the smell of blood in the water promised them a target. And right on cue, there she was -- banging away on her cowbell with such an dazed expression of utter disinterest that the jokes almost wrote themselves. Not since keyboard cat had a musical instrument been treated with such utter malaise, and the message boards lit up like Christmas trees in response. And when you watch the video, it does come off as pretty damn funny -- except for the fact that it wasn't really funny at all once people quickly discovered that sad cowbell girl was actually ..blind.

The retractions hit the web almost as quickly as the video had gone viral. But here's the thing -- half of the reason it was funny was that FOX zoomed right in on her, just as unaware as the rest of us -- looking to give us "the face of the excited young college student taking part in a grand spectacle on a national stage," and instead finding what seemed to be the one person who (seemingly) couldn't have cared less either way.

Like it or not -- the moment itself was funny. It's just that the reason the moment occurred was anything but.
..Live and learn, Intarweb. Live and learn.

[Listening to:  Incubus - "Dig" ]


JerseySjov said…
about jersey shore- the thing i hate about it is that, despite the scourge of morons who actually live in the state, they imported fools from all over the east coast for the show.

and as for the blind girl- granted she couldn't tell if the camera was there or not, but last i heard blind people could still smile during performances... hell, ive never seen a picture of ray charles NOT smiling.
wigsf said…
oh rock that shit honey!
Bef said…
stop hatin' on the Rock! lol

Maybe he's doing these movies so that his daughter can actually see him at work...maybe fatherhood has changed him...

Honestly, it's sexy as hell to see a big strong man be confident enough in his masculinity to make movies like this...

Yea he's probably getting p***y thrown at him even more now...
Hex said…
Jersey -- We have a place like that down here called Panama City Beach, which is like a magnet for all the frat douchebags and white trash in the reigon. People tend to get the impression young folks in Florida are all like the ones they see on MTV spring break shows (while the old folks here are the ones that botch elections and lower the cumulative IQ of the nation) but like Jersey Shore, it's usually tourists taking advantage of our sleazeball meccas.

One of the reasons I find the show funny is that the cast is full of the kinds of New Yorkers that are the easiest to make fun of.

wigsf -- Don't fear the reaper, Cowbell girl!!

Bef -- I understand making the movie so your kids can see you work, but that doesn't mean you can't mix it up and have a little fun too.

The word is that Johnny Depp did the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie for his daughter, but in between the insipid sequels he continued to find time to play John Dillinger.

I don't mind the Rock branching out. But he's typecasting himself -- all while action films in general suffer without his ability to inject a little personality into them.

In other words, "The Rundown" was a blast. Make more of those!!
Bef said…
Hex honestly I did think The Rock was going to go the action route...after movies like The Rundown (which after you mentioning it I might watch today), DOOM, Walking Tall...but then he went the kiddie movie route..maybe the money is with the kiddie movies...

One of my homegirls tweeted this yesterday...this might be the reason he's making these movies:

The Rock is a Tooth Fairy? That's just wrong. Does Disney own his freedom papers or something?
JerseySjov said…
regarding dwayne johnson: