She’s Gone

No this is not a tribute to Hall & Oates, but if you like a palette cleanser before we get going, please enjoy some 70’s Philadelphia soul.

One more thought before I really get into this…. Why hasn’t James Gunn used any Hall & Oates in a Guardians of the Galaxy film yet? Volume III? You know, the one Mark Hamill is going to be cast?

But I digress, this post is the quick reaction to the news of the hour? minute? day?

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If  you managed to ignore social media over the Memorial Day Weekend, congratulations. But this morning, failed National Anthem singer (Kaepernick has done nothing so vile as this), and professional train wreck,  Roseanne Barr tweeted herself into unemployment. I didn’t see the tweet this morning, (helps when you don’t follow her), but I did see plenty of vitriol and calling for ABC to cancel the first #1 rated show they’ve had since *Joanie loved Chachi.

*slight exaggeration

Roseanne tweeted about one of former President Barack Obama’s senior advisers as the offspring of the “Muslim Brotherhood & Planet of the Apes.” This attack on Valerie Jarrett was so unexpected, and yet it wasn’t. She immediately attempted to apologize, when it was brought to her attention that she was flat out racist. In the end, ABC must have decided she would lose them more money than they were making with her. That is clearly what the NFL would have decided.

I watched the pilot episode in the rebooted 2018 season. It had tremendous buzz the following day as Roseanne played a voice of the disenfranchised middle American who was upset with the way Washington DC has neglected the middle class. It showed family repercussions that have been left in the wake of the 2016 presidential election. It introduced new characters including her gender fluid and questioning grandson, which continues Roseanne’s groundbreaking commitment to telling stories of the LGBTQ community. The show was interesting, highly rated and even President Trump found time to watch it. I didn’t really watch it in the 80’s or 90’s so I wasn’t drawn to the storytelling or nostalgia.

The sad part is that within three minutes I was concerned about the cast and crew that were preparing to work on the upcoming season. For some this was their return to television after long gaps in their IMDB.com. Laurie Metcalf just earned an Oscar nomination and John Goodman is in every 4th movie, so they will be fine. But this was a break for newcomers and we never think about the lighting people, the costumers, craft service, etc. when a show goes down. Surely Roseanne didn’t think about it while she blasted a respected advisor to a functional government.

I am sure the President will have a tweet about this in between afternoon Diet Cokes, so stay tuned.

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Still the King of Late Night

If you are like me, you spent a great deal of time watching the legend David Letterman in the late evening/early morning sharing the absurdities of the world like Stupid Human Tricks and introducing us to characters like Larry Bud Melman or Rupert Jee. Dave retired from the grind of five weekly shows in 2015. He grew a tremendous beard, began to really speak his mind about politics (I’m talking about you President Trump), and like most people in the entertainment industry, signed a deal with Netflix.

So far he has delivered five episodes of My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with for Netflix with President Obama, George Clooney, Malala Yousafzai, Jay-Z and Tina Fey. They are wonderful long form conversations with interesting people. The guests are not there looking to plug their new film, tv show or album. They are there to converse with Dave. When he wanted to, Dave was an engaging host who occasionally irritated his guests by asking uncomfortable questions, (Oprah?) and this format flows well.  One of my favorite interviews of all time is when he had the late Richard Harris on, telling stories of drunken ribaldry with Peter O’Toole. Dave introduced his guest, set them up and knew when to stay out of the way. He is unleashed by the tethers of CBS and mainstream media and his closer to a curmudgeon version of the guy we remember from 30+ years ago.

Early in his career he gave a tremendous opportunities for people to build their celebrity. His platform helped launch the careers of Andy Kaufman, Howard Stern and some real estate guy in New York. Dave’s next episode of MNGNNI will feature a conversation with Stern and the early internet buzz says the Tweeter in Chief will be a highpoint of conversation. This should be a free flowing conversation that will not disappoint.

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Howard and Dave have always been a great duo, but knowing they plan to dissect their connected history with the President of the United States has me captivated. It is easily the most important coming to Netflix next week. Even more than this….

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Netflix is now “more valuable” than Disney.

Thats a wild sentence to read in the headline huh? What an accomplishment for Reed Hastings and Netflix.

It’s stock today rose to $349.29 per share with a market cap of $161 billion, while Disney took a small hit and fell to $102.11 per share, with a market cap of $152 billion. Thats an insane amount of money for both of these media empires.

Netflix consistently churns out quality originals, and supplements them with a good assortment of movies and TV shows from the past to keep people entertained. They’re set to put out more than 800 pieces of original content in 2018, and have an ever expanding library of outstanding standup specials (my most recent addiction). It makes sense, but will it last?

Disney is still set to release their own streaming service at some point in the near future, or potentially focusing on Hulu, where they will be majority owners if their purchase of 21st Century Fox goes through. That means all of their content will leave Netflix (after the contract is up) and migrate to a new platform. I hope they expand their lineup of streamable movies as well, and reach deep into their backlogs ( Really I just want to be able to watch Robin Hood.)

I would also assume that ESPN (who’s parent company is Disney) would have their content placed on Disney’s service, meaning all of the 30-for-30 content that they have produced. That even further increases the value of said service, and I would assume at its launch would bump Disneys stock up and make them the top dog again.

For now though, Netflix is King.

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Sitcom inventory

If you follow a lot of the same people that I do on Twitter, you were probably surprised to see the news that Fox is cancelling Brooklyn 99, the 5th year sitcom starring Andy Samberg, Andre Braugher amid a terrific ensemble. Although this is disappointing to say the least, there is hope for fans that Hulu or Netflix will meet with the creative team and finish out their storytelling.

As the internet decries the passing of another quality show, Arrested Development is about to return for season 5 May 29 on Netflix. The uneven season 4 has been remixed and revised and is now showing on Netflix as well as the 3 original seasons (which coincidentally originally were on Fox before cancellation in 2006). If fans of the Bluth family can wait nearly a decade to see a return, the #99ers can wait a few months to see if there will be a different outcome. You never know when Larry David will want to do another season of Curb either.

Newsflash… there are still quality comedies to look forward to: Veep, Silicon Valley, blackish, The Goldbergs, Roseanne, and You’re the Worst. If you watched any amount of the NCAA Mens Basketball tournament you were made aware of The Last O.G. starring Tracy Morgan and Tiffany Haddish. If you are not watching this show, you should fix that. And any fan of debauchery, baseball or both can not miss watching Brockmire.

One little sidebar is the notion that shows that are less than an hour are eligible for acting awards in the comedy genre at the Emmys or Golden Globes. My wife and I questioned this while watching The Big C or Nurse Jackie on Showtime. I think we need a unique category for shorter drama, because I am captivated by Atlanta, Orange is the New Black and Master of None.

And yet at the same time, my 14 year old son decided to start watching Friends on Netflix and has powered through Season 1. There is never a shortage of television to find, revisit or discover. If you haven’t seen the shows listed above they all get my recommendation. Or go outside. It’s nice out there.

 

 

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’13 Reasons Why’ Season 2 Gets Full Trailer Ahead of Release

The second season of one of Netflix’s most popular shows to date is set to release Friday May 18th, 2018. 

Though the first season of hit TV show 13 Reasons Why focused on the tragic suicide of Hannah Baker, Netflix isn’t done with the series quite yet. Season two is coming back in a matter of weeks having started filming in June 2017.

Trying to avoid some of the backlash they received over the first season’s tough content, the cast is recording content warning for this season’s episodes complete with resources for people who are affected by the material.

From first look photos and now the trailer it seems the cassette tapes from last season have been replaced by polaroids in this 13 episode run. The story also seems to be much darker, with attacks on seemingly everyone we met in the first season, and Clay going as far as acquiring a handgun.

Check out the trailer in full, and let us know what you think on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram afterwords!

NBC’s ‘RISE’ is the best show your not currently watching.

NBC’s new TV show is an attempt to recapture the highschool drama style from its hit ‘Friday Night Lights’ but targets a new audience (partially) trading in the gridiron for the Theatre. 

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RISE is the story of the Stanton High School Theatre, a poorly funded hodgepodge of individuals led by their eccentric English teacher Lou Mazzuchelli (Josh Randor). Mazzu takes over the theatre club when he is lowballed on payment by the school principal, pushing out Tracey Wolfe (Rosie Perez) who becomes his right hand woman throughout the series.

As is with any good high school drama, the adults are merely there to keep everything on track, the real interest is in the high schoolers themselves. The show quickly establishes its major players which fill familiar roles: The star football player who’s bad grades land him in his teachers play, but he secretly really enjoys it; the Football coach’s daughter who is reeling from her fathers infidelity to her mother; the closet gay kid from a religious family; the girl from a single mother family who works to pull her own weight around home; and the son of the English teacher turned director who is rebelling in the form of alcohol and football instead of the music he used to enjoy playing.

The play and the theatre is the backdrop for the complex inter-workings of a high school. It takes itself a step further than Friday Night Lights did and it pays dividends as the family problems boil over into the theatre, and vice versa.

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Not unexpectedly the two leads of the play, QB 1 Robbie Thorne (Damon Gillespie) and part time waitress Lilette Suarez (Auli’i Cravalho), become the main love interest from the show.  The acting from these two is at time very good, and rivals some of the best on the show.

But that best in show acting (at-least through the first half of the season) comes through the development of Gordy Mazzuchelli, the son of the director of the play. Gordy at first seems like an odd ball out in his family, more into football than the arts, and his father (a self professed lover of football) is seemingly very supportive of him. But once Gordy’s alcoholism is brought to a head a few episodes in, it is also revealed that Gordy used to be very into music, though he says it was only to please his dad. The issue really comes to a head when Lou Mazzu brings a student who had been sleeping in the lighting room for the theatre into their home and has him sleep in Gordy’s room. Gordy feels replaced, and the split between him and his family continues to widen. The dynamic the two of them have is played out very well, and creates some of the funnest moments of the show.

Get caught up on RISE, because your not going to want to miss out if this show keeps going on the path its headed now.

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Welcome to Popcorn Culture!

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Wait. What is Popcorn Culture?

Our Bio currently reads: “Pop-Culture obsessives writing for those obsessed with Pop-Culture. 

But what does that mean? It means myself (Kalib LaChapelle) and my partner Ross Parker are going to write about what we deem as Pop-Culture. Anything from sports to video games to movies and television will be covered in one way or another on this website. And also probably anything else we want to talk about in one way or another.

We’re pretty excited about this whole thing, and we hope y’all are as well. You can expect a consistent update to content here on the website, but if you want to know exactly when everything posts you can follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

We’d also love if you followed us on Instagram, where there will be a random assortment of content coming out from us daily. Think of it as a sort of looking glass into our lives and what we think is cool.

Alright enough plugging. Go read about Infinity War! I know thats what you came here for.

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