Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Quarantine musings

Things to think about while in lockdown (for week 28)


I love this scam.  Underage teenagers are putting on gray wigs, wearing masks, and liquor stores are selling them booze.


Note to Postmate drivers:  If you’re making a delivery for me but stop off somewhere else first for fifteen minutes, so my food gets cold, that gets reflected in your tip. 


I miss restaurants, but not enough to eat in one. 


Seriously.  How hard is it to wear a mask?


CHEERS premiered 38 years ago this month. Stay tuned for a podcast episode all about that. 


Who besides me has had a screwed up sleep pattern since March?   Although, to be fair, I haven’t slept well since 2016. 


Not to take anything away from SCHITT’S CREEK, but if there weren’t the pandemic and people didn’t have all this time on their hands to sample it and watch the whole series, do you think it still would have won all those Emmys?  


I'm sure one reason people watch SCHITT'S CREEK is so they don't have to watch the news.  


When you get takeout food, and you’re eating it out of Styrofoam and it’s already starting to congeal, that’s two meals a day every day for ten months if you’re in a writers room.    Oh boy!  Italian again. 


If a UPS truck passes by the house and doesn’t stop I take it personally now. 


The San Diego Padres finally put together a fantastic year and none of their long-suffering fans can watch them in person. 


Are you still hoarding toilet paper? 


The new rage is Zoom readings of classic sitcoms like GOLDEN GIRLS and FRIENDS with diverse casts.  If Denzel Washington is reading this – BIG WAVE DAVE’S is available.


And to think – so much of this could have been avoided.  SHOULD have been avoided. VOTE!



Kevin said...

"Note to Postmate drivers: If you’re making a delivery for me but stop off somewhere else first for fifteen minutes, so my food gets cold, that gets reflected in your tip."

Fair point, but I'm not sure it's a good idea to antagonize the people who are alone with your food in their car right before you eat it.

McAlvie said...

I confess that I probably would never have watched Schitts Creek if it weren't for the Pandemic. It really isn't my kind of humor, and I suspect it mostly did so well because it didn't have a whole lot of competition. That said, I did watch many episodes and did get some laughs out of it, which is more than I can say about other shows. It won't go up on my list of favorites, I wasn't compelled to binge watch, and I'll probably never watch it again - but that's true of most of what's on tv now so it's not a criticism of SC.

Didn't know about the Golden Girls readings. I don't know if the scripts would work nearly as well. I recently realized that I am now older than the cast was then. I also realized that the dialog was basically a stream of one-liners, and that's something that is generally annoying in modern sitcoms. I suspect it worked well then because of the great cast of professionals and because those not very old at all ladies could get away with things a younger cast couldn't. That it was popular across generations ought to have taught the networks something, but apparently they were all out sick that decade.

VP81955 said...

Some potentially good news -- a producer has expressed interest in an option agreement for "Fugitive Sweetheart," one of my rom-com feature scripts. As I've never done anything like this before, I'm a bit nervous about selling the rights (their past works appear reputable and in the $5-8M range), in fear the wrong move might backfire on me in the long run. Any suggestions from those who have sold features (including you, Ken)?

Brian said...

"They only won because of quarantine" feels a little harsh. Plenty of comedies--including the others nominated in the category--were available for streaming during the lockdown. Any/all could have been sampled during that time.

It's a show that's not everyone's cup of tea. I get that. I'm also someone who loved the show. For me, aside from the humor, it was a show that had real heart. So many comedies today can feel like a paint-by-numbers when it comes to trying to get some heart string tugs in there. It feels calculated. SC never felt that way for me. I was often floored by how moved I was at certain eps. I think it was the combination of humor and progressive representation that won people over.

And anyone who doesn't think Catherine O'Hara isn't one of our greatest living comedians has their underwear on too tight.

Mmryan314 said...

I have watched Schitt's Creek, every episode, for all of its seasons so far and I did that before the pandemic. Took me a few episodes for it to catch on for me but after that it has become one of my very all time favorite shows. I love the characters and the humor. Big headed Bob is probably my favorite character because he's just so weird. I've gone back to rewatch some of the episodes.
I am also a huge Cheers and Frasier fan. Episodes from those shows and from mash are my go-to shows, feel good shows, that I watch right before I go to sleep every night.

By Ken Levine said...

I said "not to take anything away from Schitt's Creek" -- I'm just suggested their cause was aided by the pandemic and more people being able to discover them. It's the type of help shows used to get by having a good time slot. But sampling alone won't mean "schitt" if the show isn't good and the audience doesn't want to come back for more.

Troy McClure said...

I recently rewatched the Wheels of Fortune episode you and David wrote. I never get tired of it. Michael Keaton was hilarious as Lilith's conman brother.

I don't know if you intended it to also be a satire of evangelical grifters who hoodwink gullible rednecks, but it worked brilliantly on that score too. The kind of simplistic lines he came out with during his preaching, his fervent style of delivery, and the enthusiasm of the rubes in the church were all on point.

The icing on the cake is the look on Frasier's face when Martin tells him about Blaine cleaning up the oil on the Galapagos Islands.

benson said...

FYI, I noticed that Cheers will run twice nightly at 11pm ET on Decades Channel beginning a week from Monday.

RMK said...

The final season of The Good Place only hits Netflix this weekend. If NBC had rerun that (in their contractual right) or let it go to Netflix sooner, I thought that move would help its chances for some Emmys love. But as John Belushi would say BUT NO!!!!!

Tudor Queen said...

"Seriously. How hard is it to wear a mask?"

Amen to that. I wear a mask, not out of any great virtue but because it's something manageable I can do to maybe help stop the spread of this thing even a teeny tiny bit. It's uncomfortable sometimes - though my husband has it worse, since he has COPD - he also wears a mask when he goes out.

I don't understand why this has degenerated into a situation where people are shooting each other over who is or isn't wearing a mask. This is insanity writ large. When did we get a civil right to get our nails done, or to be able to sit in our favorite bars or coffee shops? Why is it treason for a state governor or city council to say hairdressers must be closed when cases are skyrocketing? I was unable to get my hair cut for five months. I looked messy. I survived, people.

The jockeys riding in the Kentucky Derby a few weeks ago wore masks. That has to have been a whole lot more uncomfortable and difficult than I've ever had it. If they can do that, I can wear mine when I go to chemo or get some groceries.

Let's get a sense of proportion. And Ken's right. VOTE. Whatever your politics, please vote. People have gone to jail, and some have even died, for you or me to hae that right. Please exercise that right.

Russ DiBello said...

Sometimes, a show like "Schitt's Creek" comes along, starring actors I have always really liked, and it wins 286 Emmys, a Congressional Medal Of Freedom, and the Vatican canonizes the lead cast. So I thinks to myself, hoo hah, I should really check this show out!

I then watch several episodes and I come to realize a few things:

[a] I don't hear myself laughing;

[b] I am not dazzled by any of the wordplay (a la "Cheers"; "Frasier" etc.);

[c] the direction leaves me meh;

[d] I guess I have better things to do than binge this show

And I immediately wonder if revealing any of my feelings about this universally-loved series to fellow members of the Showbiz community would cause them to shun me like a guy who showed up at a Black Lives Matter event, wearing a Proud Boys T-shirt?

Just curious if anyone else's first reaction to finding out they didn't even like something that the whole world expects them to love unconditionally is "Uh oh!"?

Mike Bloodworth said...

Here's what I've been musing about lately.

I miss hugs and a hearty handshake. The elbow bump just isn't cutting it.

Is "LiMu Emu" a REAL Emu, a puppet or C.G.I.? Whatever it is it looks pretty convincing.

I have been curious about "Schitt's Creek." I've loved Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara since the "SCTV" days. But, as I've said before, I don't pay for television programming.

Regarding the Oscar's© new diversity standards. O.K. as long as it goes both ways. i.e. Would black directors such as Spike Lee and Ava DuVernay, etc., be forced to add extraneous white and other ethnic characters to their films even if they are totally inappropriate to the plot?

If Donald Trump did a total 180 and started wearing a mask all the time and got his followers to do the same, would those that hate Trump be obligated to remove theirs?

Speaking of politics," I was thinking of the "CHEERS" episode, "Woody Gets an Election." That's the one where Frasier gets Woody to run for office despite having no qualifications. It seems incredibly relevant, today.
It wasn't one of Ken's. But maybe he could get one of the writers to "guest blog" about it.

I have more, but my battery is dying.

A belated Happy Equinox everybody!


By Ken Levine said...

Some comments are getting unnecessarily mean and thus are getting deleted. Please play nice, kids.

YEKIMI said...

I'm one of the ones who, when the Pandemic came along, life didn't change very much for me. I avoided people long before the Coronavirus came along. Also my doctor[s] DIDN'T want me to wear a mask due to lung/heart issues [re-breathing CO2 would cause even WORSE symptoms for my heart] but now if I go out I'll wear one but can only tolerate it for about 5-10 minutes. Already almost passed out twice in stores because had one on longer than that so I ripped it off anyways. People looked at me like i had just kicked a bunch of kittens, puppies and baby bunnies down the aisle.

I think Schitt's Creek is hilarious. Always been a fan of Catherine O'Hara & Eugene Levy. Only seen the first two seasons so far and waiting for our library system to get the rest of the DVDs for the other seasons. Heck, I like it so much I may even go out and buy the DVDs.

Mike Bloodworth said...

P.S. One advantage of wearing a mask is that because my mouth is covered I don't have to wear my dentures when I'm out in public. The downside is that I do put them in they're really uncomfortable because I'm not used to them any more.

thirteen said...

The Limu Emu is real. Doug, however, is a robot. The tragedy of Doug's existence is that he can't post here because he can't check off the I'm Not a Robot box.

Klee said...

I love Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hara, specially together, but I watched five reasons to watch Schitt's Creek (with supposedly the funniest moments of each season) on IMDB. I didn't even smirk. It must be COVID 19!!! or I'm getting to old to appreciate "comedy".

Storm said...

THANK YOU. I love Catherine O'Hara (for real; I've had a crush on her since I was a kid) and Eugene Levy with all my heart, SCTV ruled SO HARD, but that show just got on my nerves the two or three times I tried to watch it. It didn't make me laugh at all; everyone is just SUCH a terrible person that I just cringed, and I love the hell out of AbFab! The two of them winning is fantastic, but the show? Mehhhhnotsomuch.

And I have been positively shirty about the fact that it beat out "What We Do In The Shadows", because that show makes me laugh until I fucking weep. NADJA GIVES ME LIFE.

I've never really asked a Friday Question before, but I think I finally thought of two, both radio-related:

What was the funniest mondegreen (misheard lyric or title) you ever heard from a listener?

And in your entire career on the radio, over the years and formats, which ONE song do you still hate with the fury of a thousand suns?

Cheers, thanks a lot,


Kevin from VA said...

Russ DiBello, my answer to your question is yes. I somehow avoided "The Deer Hunter" for over 30 years but finally viewed it based on reading the many rave reviews the movie has collected over the years. After recently watching the movie, I was stunned how poorly written and edited it was. It amazes me that the movie is still so well thought of today.

Mike Bloodworth, my answer to your question is no. Whether or not this POTUS wears a mask would have little impact on the millions of Americans who are wearing a mask. Not because of politics. It's simply the right thing to do, to hopefully protect you and I from infection due to a virus that has already been fatal to over 200,000 fellow Americans.

Wendy M. Grossman said...

Are LA restaurants not putting tables outside as they are in London and other cities, then? It's ending now because the weather is getting damp, rainy, and chilly, but over the last few months friends and I have had some fine times in London's Chinatown eating at tables outside in the sun (I supposed it's wrong to *thank* climate change for that?). London has closed a number of streets in order to facilitate this sort of thing, and it's been a real blessing.

That said, given the weather this week - and the numbers - I guess we're back to takeout for a while.


Anonymous said...

It's great that Catherine O'Hara and Eugene Levy are finally winning Emmys for SCTV.

G.E. Masana said...

" Underage teenagers are putting on gray wigs, wearing masks, and liquor stores are selling them booze."

When I was a teen we had to apply layers of face putty and latex prosthetics with spirit gum. Kids have it so easy today.

By the way, I watched the Theatre Three production of "Surf's Up." I thought the play was written a few years ago if I have that right, so the Covid references in it - it's a special 2020 version?

Dave H said...

I have been enjoying the zoom script reads from famous movies and reunions. Celebs did a funny one for Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Almost Famous cast did a online reunion. It would be great if more classic TV shows and movies did these kind of reunions.

Dave H said...

During this quarantine i have watched so many TV shows and movies old and new. There are shows I have recently watched that I never watched when they were on and I can't believe that some of them lasted as long as they did. I did not laugh once. Some of these shows...

King of Queens
Rules Of Engagement
Big Bang Theory
Everyone Loves Raymond
Two and a Half Men
Last Man Standing

I guess it may just be me because these shows lasted awhile. Anyone else experience this? Seinfeld is one of the few shows that rerun regularly that I still laugh out loud at.

I have also found I can't stand the shows that feature the buffoon husband with the smart wife that puts up with him routine. Tim Allen has perfected this. I guess a lot of people just found this comforting tv? Or there were a lot of relationships like this? Lol

who was the audience for two and a half men? I can't stand it. lol no offence to the people that love these shows. :) I have just discovered all of this with too much free time.