Sunday, March 31, 2013

Dave's Thoughts of the Day: April 1st

I considered a joke entry for April Fool's Day, but I have a few straight thoughts to offer to you.

First of all, what's the deal with the Cadbury Bunny?   What kind of a clown is this?   This fat little bunny gets off thinking he (or she) can start clucking like a chicken and get rewarded bogus Chocolate Eggs with goo in them.  Come on people...    that is *not* a chicken.   Those eggs are from a factory!

Went to Wonder Con on Saturday with some relatives.  It's in Anaheim and it's the "build up" event to Wonder Con in San Diego.  It was a *scene!*   I was pumped up!

You go over to the two autograph rows and see Blue Power Ranger, Soup Nazi, the Incredible Hulk from the 70s, Chewbacca (poor guy is in a wheelchair now though), and a few others... freaking VIRGIL was there too.  Virgil has nothing to do with Sci Fi, Comics, or Fantasy whatsoever.  You can bet he'll be at the next Antiques Roadshow convention too.

Somewhat funny story... ok my Mom and I were trying to come up with some ideas for things to do while my Aunt and Uncle dug into comics and autographs downstairs... so we went up to a few other rooms on levels 2 and 3.  We saw some short family friendly films, really nice, very entertaining.   Then I recommended a panel on Cartoon Voices.   Good ole Mark Evanier, the man behind the wit behind the best Saturday Morning Kids TV show ever in my book, Garfield and Friends, hosted a panel of his colleagues from the voice acting business for a demonstration of how cartoon voice acting works.  Really good panel.  I'm sure they've done that show 1000s of times at various conventions, but it's tremendous!    My mom and I went over to the room where the panel took place but another presentation was in progress, so we peeked in and we were about to carry on.

Then I noticed a group of people right next to us including this short woman who looked an awful lot like Larraine Newman (SNL fame etc., she has been doing cartoon voice work for the last 15 years).   So I told my Mom in a low voice "Look behind you."   So she did, and she's like "What?"

I wasn't sure who all those people were so I said "Oh, nothing, never mind, I thought maybe we saw some people we knew."   Only a half hour later, I realized the Larraine Newman looking woman *WAS* Larraine Newman!  Holy mackerel would you believe it?!   She's very short, if anyone was curious.  In fact, the group next to us at the time was the entire panel of guests:  Larraine, Jason Marsden, Gregg Berger, Laura Summer, Saratoga Ballantine, and Neil Kaplan.   Boy they all did a great job, that presentation was laugh out loud funny!  Once we were seated, we were introduced as an audience to each of the voices through Evanier, the moderator. 

Later on, my Mom and I checked out some more discussion panels at the Arena.  It's not a big arena, but for the purpose of conventions it was an *enormous* venue to host discussion panels, and it was as good as packed.   I thought we were just going to see some movie at the arena since the program said "Sony Pictures Entertainment Movies."  Seriously, I thought it was just a giant screening room for some trailers, and it was, but to our surprise, we not only saw the trailer for this really bizarre new comedy called "This is the End" with Craig Robinson, the guy from Eastbound and Down, and Seth Rogen, but freakin' all three of them came out for a Q&A session.   *THAT* was laugh out loud funny!   That whole day was fantastic.

If you can see Blue Power Ranger, Soup Nazi, Chewbacca, Lt Uhura, Hulk, R2D2, Dark Helmet, a host of great cartoon voices including NR4PTP Larraine Newman, Jane Levy, Seth Rogen, Craig Robinson, and the Easbound and Down guy in one day, that's a good day.

Now... the quest continues at Comic Con, and the mother lode:  The Big Bang Theory discussion panel.  I've seen the last two of them on the internet... it just doesn't get any better than that.   Only problem.  I don't have tickets to Comic Con!  Bah!   Not sure how that ends... I probably won't go.  Ah well, I'll always have Wonder Con to fall back on.  Next year, Wonder Con is in San Francisco... I may be a-go for the roadie.

So other thoughts...

People have had a lot of buzz about this History Channel show "The Bible."  I saw an episode tonight while with family... pretty good!   We know exactly what happens here...   but it's still interesting to see unfold.

I hope other books like that get their own TV shows someday.  "The Tech Manual."  The "Windows for Dummies" book.   "The Phone Book."   "The Encyclopedia."  I'm all in.

In the history of TV shows, there have been numerous settings used.  We've seen naval airships as a setting.   World War II, a local bar, an apartment, a radio station, a police department, school, a mall, and coutnless others.  Here's a few others that I'm surprised they didn't try yet.

Sit down restaurants and diners were used quite frequently in sitcoms and dramas, but how come no one really made more than a recurring sketch out of the fast food restaurant?  Places like McDonald's, In N Out, and Shake Shack?   I'd think there'd be some material there for a 30 minute show, don't you?   Young teens trying to find their way through friendships and fries.  Why wouldn't that work??

A library.   You get some real characters at the library, and a bunch of folks who've held long time jobs there.   Perhaps a look at the people behind the scenes could be interesting, dry humor.

A newstand... not a newspaper office, but just a dopey newstand in the big city someplace.   A story from the perspective of the newstand owner who sees all sorts of goofballs walk by and buy their regular dailies.

I believe record store has been tried once or twice for shows, but not as a principal setting.   A *used* record store could yield a very offbeat program.  I've had that idea for quite some time, going back to 7 years ago at Santa Barbara.  Back then there was a used record store, a giant one, called "Morninglory Music (More Music for Less Money)".  I'd give the sitcom the same name: "Morninglory."

A sports stadium!   To pose an example, a show about the staff at Staples Center, including the ushers, the concessions guys, and those intimidating "Red Coats," the guys in red suits who do security on the arena floor.  I'd be really interested in a show like that.

That's what I had so far.   I think in television you can really push the limits.  Cable has been remarkable in doing just that.  I commend television on the whole for getting more and more creative.

I didn't feel like chatting about sports in today's entry, and I said "would it be possible to do a whole blog entry without a current sports topic?"  Then I looked at it -- I JUST DID!

Do the dance, everybody!  I'll get back into sports banter tomorrow.  Have a good Monday..

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