Mimi’s and Nikko’s Bogus Journey

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A few days ago, Mimi and Nikko, two of the “stars” of the ratchet parade known as Love and Hip Hop: Atlanta, set the internets ablaze with the “leak” of a sex tape. As usual, this is a concerted marketing effort on the part of two fame seekers who, in the absence of any discernible skills and talent, have decided to sell their bodies to the night, a la Roxanne.

We’ve seen this work in the not too distant past – It’s the only reason anyone knows who Kim Kardashian is – so it’s no wonder these two have decided to give it a go. But, as is the case when a person decides to film a sex act and place it online, these two didn’t think it through all the way. Anyone who has seen this movie before knows that this will not do much for their careers – outside of causing a large amount of shower rod-related sex injuries.

First, African Americans don’t fare too well in the sex-tape department – at least as a springboard to greater success. Sure, Kim Kardashian became a household name, but when’s the last time you saw Ray J anywhere?

Ray-J's last known appearance was on this meme.

Ray-J’s last known appearance was on this meme.

And, lest we forget, the gambit backfired on Montana Fishburne as well, who shortly after her well-publicized sex tape release, disappeared from the public eye altogether, and thoroughly regrets her transgression.

Second, the whole world knows that this “leak” is just a front for a jump into pornography. See how I put “leak” in quotes? So is every news source that’s reporting this story. The entire world knows that these tapes were never meant for private eyes. The Kim K sex tape had an intro, for heaven’s sake! While we suspended our disbelief once (or twice, if you count Paris Hilton’s dalliance with porn, though that one seems legit by today’s standards), no one has bought a leak story since that day - just ask Farrah Abraham.

Now that the magician’s secrets have been revealed, people just see these fame seekers for what they are- pornographers. And, even though millions of people watch porn, they still look down on pornographers; it’s just the way it is.

Someone needs to get these two a copy of Boogie Nights.

I won’t go into any moral recitation here, mainly because I don’t believe that two people having sex and filming it is wrong in and of itself – that’s between you, the other person, and the guy in the Pulp Fiction gimp suit you paid to stand in the corner silently. Besides that, anyone who’d willingly sign up for a reality show already exists in a shame-proof bubble that no amount of finger wagging can pop.

Need proof? Before making her porn debut, Mimi Faust was willing to go on TV and admit that she had sex with this guy:

Stevie J, seen here mentoring four turtles in the ways of the ninja.

Stevie J, seen here mentoring four turtles in the ways of the ninja.

All I’m saying is, if you’d like a ticket to fame and fortune and you have no skills outside of an ability to look ignorant on television, porn will not do you any favors. Kids, that ain’t the way.

From the looks of it, the only people who are gonna make any serious bank off this latest sex tape are the good people at Lowe’s.

 

 

Season One: Episode Twenty Four

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La Strega

Linda Blair is another one of those people I have soft spot for, although she wasn’t as good as Adrienne Barbeau at picking projects – with one notable exception of course. Northern Exposure’s Rob Morrow is terribly miscast here, although I now realize that hardly anyone remembers Northen Exposure anymore.

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Morrow is Vito, an idiot, avenging the death of his mother the day before to La Strega, an infamous witch who placed a fatal curse. He didn’t plan his vengeance too well though. It turns out that ten years ago, his mother pawned a gold ring with a red stone, and La Strega switched the rings. When his mother threatened to go to the police, she was cursed to die in exactly ten years. When she left, she had a heart attack, spent a decade in bed and promptly passed away. He’s back to avenge her and retrieve the ring.

Blair offers another scenario. She is not La Strega. La Strega was her mother, who is dead as well. Vito’s mother is the one who switched the rings. Blair will let him live, and he can stay with her for two weeks and make his decision then. She is merciful because he is only an errand boy for his mother, whose brilliant plan was to send a young Italian boy to an attractive woman’s house and hope that he doesn’t hit on her.

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The witch is also a fatalist, and there are intimations she has a better idea of what’s going on than he does. Actually an eggplant has a better idea of what’s going on than this guy. Also, she has the hots for him.

But the truth is unclear. There is a ring. There is a witch. But who is lying to whom?

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A good story to finish the series, even if Blair was a little flat.

Season One: Episode Twenty Three

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Mannikins of Horror

Mannikins of Horror is another Robert Bloch adaptation and it is more successful than its predecessor. First of all, I wish I knew more about the technical aspects of film and television as far as the cinematography and film stock bits of it. I like the look of this episode, it’s the sort of thing you don’t see anymore, a slightly grainy look with a very restrained color palette, and it seems to have existed only in the 70’s and part of the 80’s but I’ve always cared for it.

Dr. Collin has been institutionalized for eight years. He was a gifted surgeon, but apparently he had visions of little clay men. As far as visions go, that’s kind of lousy. I have visions of either winning the Super Bowl while heroically playing injured, or of Christina Hendricks playing table tennis while negiotiating a trampoline.

Mannikins of Horror 2

He makes little clay sculptures based on his medical knowledge, but they’re utterly perfect with organs and everythign. He’s convinced he’s on the verge of a breakthrough, but the new administrator Dr. Star, does not have the patience for his brand of crazy. I know we’re supposed to hate Star at this point, but the patient is obviously insane and Star really isn’t doing anything out of line.

But if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times, just because someone is crazy, doesn’t mean they’re wrong. The little men do move.

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At this point, Star goes over the top evil, drinking vodka, harassing the blonde doctor, and making grand statements about the system and its “needs.” The system needs blonde doctors of course.

And then this episode gets fairly grisly, all things considered. This season is finishing strong.

Mannikins of Horror 4

 

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Season One: Episode Twenty One

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All in a Day's Work

I love Adrienne Barbeau. Love her. She was the previous generation’s Kim Kardashian (as far as being an Armenian sex symbol, not the reality show stuff). Somehow she always gives a good performance, so I was looking forward to the guest appearance.

All in a Day's Work 1

She plays a white witch who makes various things for people, mostly love potions it seems like. She is visited by Steven Rose, a man with a really bad problem. He has a doppelganger. If you are familiar with those legends, this is a terrible, terrible sign. Also, doppelgangers are rarely used in movies or TV, so I’d like to see more things like this explored. The double is getting closer and closer every day, and who knows what it wants? And he has a solution, a solution that’s so fantastically bad of an idea, she immediately orders him out of her house.

The only problem is that it has followed him. And it is now attached to her and her small child.

All in a Day's Work 2

She is going to have to do the one thing that she doesn’t want to have to do, a ceremony that will damn her soul for doing it.

This episode might be the most frustrating one of the season because its genuinely creepy, starts very strong, and then takes a strong comic turn halfway through and comes completely apart. I just can’t imagine letting up the pressure on a story like this. Its a waste of perfectly good Barbeau!

Season One: Episode Nineteen

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Rain Dance

Rain Dance has to me one of the best designed monsters in the whole series, when I go off of memory.

Rain Dance 1

It concerns Tom, an unscrupulous man who makes fake antiques, and Vanessa, his ungrateful wife. She does not travel well, by the way. He finds artifacts, in this case from a lost tribe who lived in a stone city. It’s a legit score, but his wife isn’t crazy about her life in general.

They get brought a statue of a God of Death. I love this thing. It is horrible. I know in the end, it’s a midget in a rubber suit, but what a suit! Apparently he brought rain, but only for a human sacrifice done in some way that’s not described. Also the area is in the midst of a terrible drout. I’m sure this won’t come up again.

Rain Dance 2

It is night, and if possible, the God of Death looks even more impressive. He starts getting antsy too. The floor beneath him starts rotting and Vanessa is noticing changes to her complexion.

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Let’s just say that we learn what happened to the lost tribe. This season is ending strong.

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Season One: Episode Eighteen

Match Game

I thought the Match Game was a Tales from the Darkside episode but the memory does betray you I guess.

Ashley Lawrence from Hellraiser guest stars as Jody who brings her weird friend Paul to a get together in a haunted house. He gets odd vibes from the place, but it’s mostly because he’s going to run into a young Tori Spelling which is a horror in itself.

Match Game 2

They play the Match Game. They light a match and start a story. When the match burns down, the story is passed to the next person who has to continue the story by improvisation. (Oh my God, the world before cell phones and Internet. Actual face-to-face communication!)

The jock starts by telling the tale of a suicide in the pond behind the house, and a man named Herbert. He was rich, according to Beverly , but couldn’t have the one thing he desired, a woman named Ethel. Also Ethel was married and her husband was a jealous politician. A politician that was so angry he neglected to realize that Herbert was larger and stronger than him when they started fighting which is a miscalculation on his part. The man gets beaten and killed. But on the way to his lover’s place, in the rain, Herbert falls off the horse onto a threshing machine.

At this point, they notice that the previously stopped clock is now on midnight. Odd.

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They continue the story. Herbert survives, scarred and wounded to be a bitter old man who hates mirrors because they reflect his growing ugliness. Eventually he drowns himself in the pond, because he has never heard of a pistol I guess.

I respect this episode for at least trying to establish tension and a slow build. It’s a slasher movie riff, but it’s trying. Herbert appears and is a figure straight out of EC comics. This episode couldn’t have had much time to shoot or money to spend, but I have to admire how much they did, and how good it looks.

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As it turns out, Paul is the key to the whole mess. Somehow, its some quality of his that brings the story to life, and the only way out is for him to finish the story.

Not bad at all, and Ashley Lawrence is great as always.

Season One: Episode Fifteen

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Mother Instinct

This is an episode about a no good son-in-law so it hits close to home. A handicapped woman with a greenhouse and a healthy fetish for plants gets a visit from her abused daughter Sheila and Sheila’s slimy husband Nelson.

Nelson is there to hit up the old lady for another loan as he has a gambling addiction, and no matter how much guilt he tries to lay on her, he’s getting no more money from her. During an argument, Nelson strikes his wife and he gets gripped up by mom. It seems that the melon juice she makes in her greenhouse gives her very temporary strength and vigor.

Mother Instinct 1

Nelson can’t take the juice because he doesn’t know the right dosage for his first dose, and the wrong dose will kill him. (So I think its safe to say he’s never done heroin.) But he wants to market the stuff. The mom shoots him down, but he just goes back to manipulating his wife.

Holy crap is that a unibrow?

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By spying on the mom, they find where she does most of her work only to find it populated with worms the size of baseball bats that attack them. Or maybe they’re trying to kiss them. Worms get misinterpreted a lot. They’ve got poker faces. But Nelson knows that the worms are the key.

He’s right. Later the mother reveals to her daughter that her father, a professor sent back a crate of Amazonian blood worms who escaped. They treat the soil of where they live, meaning that the melons are worthless. It’s the soil that matters. The son overhears this.

He goes to take the worms, drinks the melon juice, pretty much just does evil son-in-law stuff, until he runs into the mother-in-law. But there’s one problem.

The worms he’s been seeing are the babies.

Mother Instinct 3

Good episode, good performances all around, nice idea, cool monster and unibrow. Everyone wins.

Season One: Episode Thirteen

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Glim - Glim

Okay I have to preface this. This is the episode that I saw when I was eight years old, and then broke down crying at the ending, and then I had to conceal my dismay from my parents because I wasn’t supposed to be watching pretty much any of these shows.

“You look like you’ve been crying,” my dad said casually.

“No,” I sniffed.

It was Glim-Glim. It was this episode. And I can’t remember what got me so wound up in the first place.

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This episode has young Jenna von Oy. Her and her father and their crazy friend are trapped in a building with a murderous alien upstairs. She calls the monster Glim Glim, which her father and his friend object to. Glim Glim either landed or crashed on Earth, sealed off the town and then everyone died of a disease that he caused.

Glim Glim keeps a log of his own. Thankfully, he narrates in English. He is the most preposterous looking alien you can possibly imagine. It is the single greatest weakness of the entire episode. He looks like those floppy balloon things that you see outside of car dealerships. Ed Wood wouldn’t have put this thing onscreen.

It turns out that the plagues comes from the bacteria in Glim Glim’s poop (!) and he had no idea that it would kill humans. It threw up a force field around the town to keep the Earth from being destroyed, while it works on creating a cure. Also it battles horrible guilt at the deaths its caused, and the frustration of not being able to communicate.

Downstairs, the dad’s friend overacts in a manner that would have made Oliver Reed blush. If acting were a muscle, this man would have torn it.

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The people downstairs have a resistance to the plague, which is why Glim Glim is interested in them, but the biggest problem is that neither side can communicate with each other.

Except for some reason it likes the girl. And the guys decide to take advantage of that. When they get upstairs, they realize that Glim Glim has been reading every book in the library. They find a dead body in the library and flee when they see Glim Glim, again not realizing that the alien did not kill the man, but was dissecting him to find a cure.

I don't remember this part.

I don’t remember this part.

This should be laughably bad, but somehow it works. So help me God.

The kid can understand the alien enough to start a conversation, where it reveals that it needs blood to create an antidote. Amy thinks they can bridge the gap if Glim Glim is able to demonstrate that he is a friend. Downstairs, the redneck crazy guy has found guns. The dad somehow doesn’t realize that his daughter has been hanging with an alien all day until he goes to bed, but he does wake up in time to see Glim Glim drawing blood.

They freak out and shoot the alien only to find Amy. Amy and Glim Glim had put together a Christmas tree, because everyone forgot it was Christmas. Meanwhile the force field around the town is set to fail, releasing the plague. And then von Oy brings it home with some great acting and some waterworks. Eight year old Tom Moore was doomed.

 

Season One: Episode Twelve

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Fool's Good

Okay this is one of the episodes I remember loving. It’s a group of miners in a cave with their supervisor Miss Atkinson, when they find a member of their team dead, somehow horribly burned. Inside of his hand is a gold coin, and immediately Phil, the most ambitious member of the team wants to go after more gold, but the older man remembers this funny little legend-

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Phil climbs through a hole and finds the stereotypical chest of bouillion. He is immediately attacked by a troll who looks like the rabbit from Donny Darko. The troll’s touch burns. After they escape with their lives, Phil can’t wait to go back, but the older man is reluctant.

A troll’s blood is boiling hot, but it cannot stand sunlight, or the old man’s lucky pick which is made of iron.

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Armed with this knowledge, they decide to take the monster on. They escape with a bucket full of gold (apparently no one will ever figure out how heavy gold is) only to run into a cave in. Apparently the troll can generate cave- ins, a detail the old man forgot to relay.

Comeuppances abound as people bicker, die and constantly forget about the boiling hot troll blood.

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This isn’t a large set, or much space, and no one moves around much, so this is a well lit and directed show and the performances are pretty tight. It’s nice when everyone invests in their performances, it makes things that might not work on the page come alive, and Fool’s Gold is a good example of that.

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Season One: Episode Twenty

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The Cocoon Title

The Cocoon is structured the way I think that horror films should ideally be written, you should be wondering what is going on, and only find out gradually.

Billy Drago plays a cop who is dating a psychic, (although she can’t be much of a psychic if she couldn’t anticipate being betrayed by Billy Drago) and he needs her help to find out about an amnesiac blonde woman who has a lot of money, but no past. And she’s hot. Hoo boy. Everytime the psychic touches the woman’s antique hair comb she gets a flash of past lives, and a terrible murder that went unsolved.

The Cocoon

The woman is increasingly aggressive in a surprisingly strong performance until her secret is revealed. The secret – well that’s another matter. Its strains the suspension of disbelief past the breaking point and that’s in a series that’s had a killer bed.

The Cocoon 1

I like this episode, and it finishes strong, but that reveal is a little problematic. Also, Drago is onscreen with his wife in real life, Silvana Gallardo, who also was a notable acting teacher. There is a saying that those that can’t, teach. It is not true here.

The Cocoon 2

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