Friday, June 24, 2011
This Week's Flavorwires
‘Louie’ and the Best Stand-Ups-Turned-Sitcom-Stars
The first season of Louie, the FX sitcom written and directed by star Louis C.K., hits DVD and Blu-ray today; this innovative, somewhat subversive, and reliably uproarious series takes the notion of the tightly-constructed stand-up sit-com and turns it on its head, with a stream-of-consciousness narrative style and surrealist streak that brands it a true original. Of course, the stages of comedy clubs (and, before that, coffee houses and vaudeville stages) have been television’s most reliable source of comedy stars; Louie is the latest in a very long line of television series created for (and sometimes by) stand-up comedians.
Open Thread: Have Superhero Movies Gone Cold?
The Green Lantern, the third of this summer’s four huge potential-tentpole superhero comic book adaptations, opened over the weekend with a total box office take of $52.6 million—a sum that pretty much every movie site that comments on such things has deemed “disappointing.” Of course, only in 2011 Hollywood can generating over $50 million in three days be deemed a downer, but there ya go. However, hard on the heels of X-Men: First Class’s similarly “disappointing” $55 million opening two weeks back, it begs the question: are moviegoers, at long last, growing tired of superhero movies?
The 10 Most Memorable ’00s TV Theme Songs
Now that we’ve gone to the trouble of compiling our lists of the most memorable TV themes of the ‘80s and ‘90s, it would seem irresponsible (not to mention totally at odds with our obsessive-compulsive nature) not to carry on into the 2000s—in spite of the fact that TV theme songs all but disappeared in the decade, replaced on most shows by a quick title hit (though sometimes an ingenious and musical one) and credits rolling under the opening scenes.
Required Viewing: Great Documentaries About Comedians
Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop, Rodman Flender’s intimate documentary account of the comedian’s 30-city “Legally Prohibited from Being Funny on Television Tour,” goes into limited release tomorrow. Aside from being uproariously funny (with O’Brien at his spontaneous, reactive best), it is also a fascinating account of a superstar comedian’s life on the road: the rehearsals, the travel, the meet-and-greets, the stress. Of course, Flender isn’t the first documentarian to take a close look at the business of stand-up, or the complex psychology of the working comedian; we’ve assembled just a few of the best documentaries about comics after the jump.
Trailer Park: Barbarians, Banderas, and Remakes Galore
Welcome to “Trailer Park,” the Friday feature where we collect the week’s new trailers all in one place and do a little “judging a book by its cover,” ranking them from worst to best and taking our best guess at what they may be hiding. This week, we’ve got a whopping nine new trailers, featuring everyone from Jason Statham to Miss Piggy to Antonio Banderas (twice). Check ‘em out after the jump.