The Friday Hot Sheet

It was one of those weeks where it felt like the flood of new year's projects had finally subsided -- only to be replaced by the realization that all the rushed work done in January left tiny pinholes all across the giant dam we built to hold back the river. As a result, I've been in and out of meetings most of the week, watching the same people who wanted to get the year started off on the right note running all over the place wondering who they can blame for it not happening.
It happens almost every year -- so much so that it's almost funny.
And yet with all that happening, there was still plenty of time for the world to make a fool of itself. In fact, between political promises, pre-Superbowl hype, and the ever-present shadow of Mel Gibson's bad Boston accent hanging overhead, it's a wonder we had time to get any work done at all.

So before the results from the latest Environmental Safety audit stir this place up like a hill full of ants that just got stepped on -- here are this weeks risers and fallers, and the buzz as it looks from here.
The State
of the
How Do You Solve a Problem Like Obama? He gives an impassioned speech about the things that need to be done, the reasons he's struggled, and the need to quit all the damn bickering and nay-saying and get back to the work of leading the country back out of this mess -- and it all sounds inspiring and powerful, but it's as if you can just hear the critics around the corner. I support what he's trying to do, and I still have faith in the man I voted for -- but I sorta hate that he's always explaining why it's hard to get things done instead of just, you know ..doing them. I know he's got people pulling at him from all sides, especially as he continues to be (apparently) the only one left in Washington who feels that bipartisanship is the solution to the nation's problems -- but I for one just sort of wish he'd stick a flag in the ground and just say, "All right -- we're going this way!!" I know people disagree about his ideas -- which is fine, you're welcome to have a differing opinion; but I think we can all agree that the worst part of the whole thing is the general appearance of inaction on the administration's part that's the most frustrating. He's all about hanging out with the Lakers when they stop by -- but DADT is still in effect? Come on man -- you can do better than that.
Mel GibsonPossibly sensing the void in action movie roles left by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's insistence on being in family movie after family movie -- here comes Mel Gibson of all people back down the path of killing people who commit one of Hollywood's most heinous cliches crimes -- hurting the rogue cop's daughter. I've always kinda liked Mel Gibson as an action star. The Mad Max series, the first couple of Lethal Weapon movies -- those were fun films, and he was always a likable part of them. But then the drunk driving/anti-Semitism scandals happened, and he sort of became more of a pariah than the guy you liked to see shoot Gary Busey on screen every couple of months. As a result, it's a little weird seeing him back. The movie itself that he's in doesn't interest me all that much (I liked it better when it was called Taken and Liam Neeson was the one doing the ass-kicking) -- but I wonder how general audiences might react to this. I mean, here's a guy who got shunned from the public eye essentially for being a hateful loose cannon, and now he's in a movie where he's a ..vengeful loose cannon?
If reports are to be believed, the movie studio that gave us Quentin Tarantino and a host of other "indie" filmmakers who's work probably would have never seen the light of day had it been left up to the bigger studios (Swingers, Clerks, The Crying Game, Pulp Fiction, Sex Lies and Videotape, etc.) has finally been bought out and will be closing it's doors. Not that this means the end of non-studio type pictures altogether -- after all, Miramax proved during it's run that the public likes that sort of thing -- but what it threatens to mean is that we might not get a chance to see the the kinds of non-studio groomed filmmakers and talent who used Miramax as a place to take risks and get their work shown. Even worse, it threatens to continue the trend of the same four or five guys who seem to get all the jobs these days shaping the landscape of cinema in the foreseeable future. (for example -- good movie or not, did you hear that the guy who directed 500 Days of Summer is now in charge of the next few Spiderman movies following Sam Raimi's departure?)
The Ice-T
The other day the boy and I were wandering the aisles at a toy store, when I came across this little slice of awesome. Why Ice-T needs an action figure, I don't really know -- but when it comes down to it, who really cares? It's Ice motherfuckin' T!

I've been a fan of his for a long time -- his rap work, his rock/punk/heavy metal side project Body Count, or his resume of acting work. Plus, he's one of the cooler "famous people" you'll find on twitter -- continually conversing with fans, flirting with his wife, and even handing out his gamer tag to unsuspecting fans who he then proceeds to apparently slaughter online in games of Modern Warfare 2.

Besides, who doesn't want an OG in their toybox? Not only does he rock the dollhouse, but he investigates and catches sexual crimes offenders at the same time (Richard Belzer action playset sold separately)
Yet another thing we can thank the skinny bitches at PETA for -- the annual race by companies and causes to get free press by submitting potential Superbowl commercials so controversial that they're sure to get banned or rejected, thereby taking advantage of the lull period before the big game by getting their message out without actually having to fork over the millions it takes to secure ad space during the broadcast. This time around it's -- a dating site for homosexual men who "wanted to publicize their services" by broadcasting a 30-second spot during the game. CBS has already rejected the spot, calling it "too racy" to air in prime-time, which might at first glance make it seem like CBS is being prudish and close-minded about gay rights. And while history tells us that CBS has always been prudish and homophobic -- I think it's a little short-sighted to jump all over the network for pulling the plug on this one. I'm all for free speech and all, but it seems pretty clear that the folks over at never actually wanted to air the ad in the first place, -- instead choosing the PETA route to get the publicity for free. Besides -- it's the friggin' Superbowl. Is that really the sort of television program that lots of gay men watch while they ponder their lack of ability to find a mate? I think the guys over at Warming Glow put it best when they said, "..And why do gay men need to meet each other online anyways? That’s for straight people who are running out of options, like your 32-year-old sister. Gay guys already have saunas, gay bars, truck stops, organic grocery stores, the gym, Manhattan, any secluded area of a park, Pinkberry, Craigslist, and steel mills. I’m all for equal rights, but you guys are getting greedy."
Tim Tebow's
Speaking of Superbowl ads -- I'm sure you've heard by now that former University of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow and his mom will be featured in an anti-abortion Superbowl commercial paid for by the conservative Christian group Focus on the Family.

I still have my doubts about Tebow's chances to make it in the NFL, but there's no doubt he was an incredible college player. And while I'm certainly not the biggest fan of organized religion -- it's not like Tebow's the first guy to use his sports fame to provide himself with a bigger stage to play this card. Former FSU quarterback and Heisman winner Charlie Ward was a devout Christian who reportedly tried in vain during halftime breaks and postgame meetings to get his New York Knick teammates to see the light. Religion and football (especially in the South) are strongly tied together, and even if it's not something I buy into personally, I don't feel like it's really that big of a deal --
Unless someone tries to hit me over the head with it.
Not to mention the fact that all of this evangelizing will be taking place during a football game that I (and millions of other sports fans) want to watch, partially because sports provide an enjoyable escape from stressful issues and problems exactly like the ones Tebow and his mother feel the need to to come on the air and preach about.

Even worse, as much as I respect Tim Tebow's right to believe whatever he wants, I fear that being such a public jackass about the whole thing couldn't happen at a worse time for a guy who's draft prospects are falling faster than Jay Leno's Q rating. Sure, his die-hard fans will eat it up -- but is this really the right time to introduce yourself to the world as some sort of Zealot?

Besides, the whole message that the ad apparently portrays -- that every aborted baby could have grown up instead to be the equivalent of a Tim Tebow -- is in my mind horribly insulting to women all across the country who've already had to make that difficult and emotional choice.

I don't know, the whole thing just comes off as smug and condescending -- two things that I honestly always felt Tim Tebow (the person) wasn't -- even if some of his fans and supporters (especially here in Jacksonville) tended to think they could use his image as some sort of justification for acting that way themselves.
Then again, it is a Superbowl ad -- maybe they'll find a way to make the whole thing seem fun and appealing?

[Listening to:  Slipknot - "This Cold Black" ]


Anonymous said…
'ow 'bout some pussy?
Hex said…
'ow -- How 'bout you take me to dinner first, pal?

Besides -- what's wrong with a kiss, boy? Hmm? Why not start her off with a nice kiss? ..You don't have to go leaping straight for the clitoris like a bull at a gate. Give her a kiss, boy!
Bef said…
*blinks* @ the Doritos commercial...seriously?

now I'm going to have to go look for the Ice-T action figure...just so I can laugh
Kimberly said…
I'm happy and digging the return of the Friday Hot Sheet, by the way! :-)
JerseySjov said…
it's a little silly that two men comically suckin' face is inappropriate but a spot about a morally dividing social and personal issue that has been a national concern for a dang long time is okay.

gay people are sooo scary, arent they?
Captain Barista said…
Tim Tebow went from awesome to irritating in record time for me. You know the significance of that statement. I seriously want to bitch-slap him.
Hex said…
Bef -- they also had Run DMC figures, but sold separately. I thought that was a dumb strategy.

Kimberly -- Hopefully it will stick around for good this time.

Jersey -- CBS has always been the prude network. But if you see the commercial (it's floating around the web) it's also just sort of a lame clip of two guys reluctantly making out-- which is what makes me think they weren't serious in the first place.

Captain Barista -- I really do think this commercial is going to hurt his image nationally. Just assuming the level of smarm in the ad that's gonna happen, the web is gonna have him for lunch.

Add that to the diminishing returns he's getting from NFL scouts, and he might not get nearly as far as he should -- and all over something like this!?

Slap away. I'm right there with you.