MCC Live-Tweeting: Oscars 2018

Jimmy Kimmel!

Tonight one random winner took home a statuette personally contaminated by the host himself!

The 90th Academy Awards kicked off Sunday night on ABC with a mildly amusing spoof of olde-tyme theatrical newsreels before returning host Jimmy Kimmel threw down an unprecedented gauntlet: winners were encouraged to speak on any topic they wanted to, no matter how political or incendiary, for as long as they wanted. This promise was eventually broken, much to the consternation of The Shape of Water producer J. Miles Dale, who got orchestra’d out of his spotlight moment because everyone had assumed director Guillermo Del Toro should have the last word.

Also intermittently livening up the night was Kimmel’s chief running gag, a promise of a free jet ski to whoever had the shortest speech. Thus began a night of push and pull, of comparison and contrast, of #MeToo and #TimesUp and diversity abounding and white guys still winning lots of things but not all the things.

Kimmel’s contributions and interruptions were kept to a barer minimum than last year, setting aside one segment that once again indulged his addiction to practical jokes on ordinary people. Assorted parties dropped a few wisecracks at the expense of high-ranking politicians as well as accused sex offenders, but a surprising amount of the commentary was kept on the positive side — a celebration of artists and advancement instead of roasting the haters and attackers. In that sense, some speeches were more refreshing than others.

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MCC Live-Tweeting: Oscars 2017

Jimmy Kimmel!

“You want one of these so bad? Go make a movie that doesn’t suck, you lazy bum.”

The 89th Academy Awards began in style with Justin Timberlake singing or possibly lip-syncing his big Trolls single “Can’t Stop the Feeling”, but ended with all the feelings at cross-purposes when final presenters Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty — reunited fifty years after Bonnie & Clyde lost to In the Heat of the Night — made Oscar telecast history by inadvertently announcing La La Land as the winner when in fact the name printed on their card was Moonlight. La La producer Justin Horowitz broke the news when, after their speech time had already begun, he approached the mic and tried to re-announce the award. At first the audience thought he was just being humble and demurring. Then everyone realized he was serious and extremely classy as he held the card up for the cameras to see. Much confusion and Twitter quips about “fake news” ensued till things were confirmed and the Moonlight team tentatively took the stage and took their turn at thank-yous.

Between those memorable moments, ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel hosted in an effort to drum up business for his own show by bringing in his own bits such as “Celebrities Read Mean Tweets”, practical jokes, his Matt Damon feud, and I couldn’t tell you what else because I’ve never watched his show unless tonight’s Oscars telecast counted as an episode of it.

Right this way for the list of winners and a running commentary!

MCC Live-Tweeting: July 4th Sportsball


Longtime MCC readers know I’m not the world’s biggest sports fan. I probably wouldn’t rank among the top 2 billion sports fans alive. I know more about baseball than any other sport by a slim margin because in third grade I read a book about baseball that contained a thorough glossary. I learned; I tried to stick with it; I fell away quickly. The passion never developed, but the vocabulary remained.

From time to time I’ll find opportunities to attend ballgames anyway. Our hometown minor league team, the Indianapolis Indians, provide occasional diversions, free tickets, and/or reasons to get out of the house. For tonight’s feature presentation, the primary objective was to get my mom some fresh air and holiday spirit. She hasn’t been out of the house much since her retirement at the end of May, but she does love some good old-fashioned fireworks displays. Anne and I could take or leave ’em. Nevertheless, we figured the outing would do her some good.

Occasionally, though, I got bored. Or in a mood. Some light phone usage may have occurred.

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MCC Live-Tweeting: The “Sleepy Hollow” Season 3 Finale

Sleepy Hollow!

In which Ichabbie bids us a clumsy, ill-conceived Ichabbye.

Okay, after a self-mandated 24-hour cooling-off period, I think I’m ready to tackle that Friday night fiasco.

Once upon a time, Midlife Crisis Crossover provided same-night recaps of every episode of Sleepy Hollow. I’m not a pro reviewer entitled to advance copies of any TV shows, so every recap was an intense, on-the-fly, two- to three-hour marathon writing session, thinking and typing as quickly as I could to combine plot summary with top-of-my-head commentary in 1500- to 2000-word bursts — partly to see if I could do it, partly because sometimes there’s an audience for such a thing. This formerly fun exercise became a thankless chore if I paid too much attention to the competition from actual pro websites given days to prepare their material so they can click “Publish” mere seconds after each episode ends. It’s a nice luxury if you can work your way into it and don’t have to worry about sleep deprivation disrupting your full-time day job.

When Fox moved Sleepy Hollow to Fridays for the back half of season 3, I figured it was the perfect time to pull the plug on that ongoing MCC feature, not only due to diminishing returns but also because we have a family commitment every other Friday that precluded same-night recaps. Past experiences have taught me that delayed recaps are a waste of time and bandwidth, so that wasn’t an option, and that’s why this entry is not a straight-up recap. My wife and I still followed the show as fans, and every other week I’ve been live-tweeting it, which turned out to be a much better format for me. All of the MST3K-style improv joke-writing, none of the boring golf-commentator filler.

The timing worked out so that I could live-tweet last night’s season finale, “Ragnarok”, an astoundingly disappointing episode that encapsulated all of this season’s flaws to date, then one-upped them with the most poorly orchestrated mistake in series history. And after it was all over, I was there to watch the internet burn. Not just once, but twice.

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Hollywood Concedes Free Speech Battle on World Stage

James Franco!

appleseed : apple tree :: The Interview : cyberwar

I had no plans to see The Interview because I lost my tolerance for most R-rated comedies years ago, and the last time I tried a Seth Rogen film, The Green Hornet turned me against it within its first fifteen minutes, and it wasn’t even R-rated. That was before the brouhaha of the past few weeks.

Today Sony Pictures announced it’s canceling the Rogen/Franco flick’s planned theatrical release after all the major chains refused to carry it in the wake of strongly worded orders from our new internet overlords overseas. Even before our normally unflappable cinemas exercised their right to back down, Sony had been suffering through the controversial widespread release of every byte of information ever stored on every computer they’ve ever bought. Movie plans, budgets, salaries, sensitive personal data, candid undiplomatic emails, and zillions of other choice insider tidbits were extracted from behind whatever Sony cutely referred to as a “security system” by the forces of [GLORIOUSLY REDACTED] and dumped on the virtual front lawns of every muckraking internet quote-unquote “journalist” with Wi-Fi access and a dumbstruck conscience. After a long couple of weeks, some anxious Sony elder probably felt the theater-owner dogpile was the last straw, that the lives and livelihoods of thousands of employees were ultimately unfair stakes to put up against a possible gigantic bluff without thousands of notarized authorization forms from said employees, and that The Interview wasn’t worth any more headaches.

Sony is a for-profit corporation, not a ragtag team of do-gooder movie underdogs sworn to uphold their idealistic Lawful Good alignment at all costs. Just the same, it would’ve been awesome and patriotic of them to act like it and release the movie anyway. If we accept George R. R. Martin’s outraged argument that behemoths like Sony could buy and sell tiny Asian countries at will if it suited their interests, and if we accept the old adage that there’s no such thing as bad publicity, there’s a school of thought that believes the movie, if released now after all of this, could probably rake in five or ten times its original box office projections and afford to hire elite counter-hackers and armed mercenaries to protect their interests and civilians, albeit probably in that order.

All I know is, all of a sudden I really want to see this crappy comedy on principle.

Follow the link for more thoughts and a few tweets…

“The Night Before Awesome Con”: a Poetic Live-Tweet Distraction

Awesome Con Indy 2014! Woo!

Awesome Con Indy! October 3-5, 2014. Tickets still available!

Saturday my wife and I will be checking out the inaugural Awesome Con Indianapolis down at the Indiana Convention Center. Awesome Con will be our sixth convention this year, but we have high hopes that this experience will find its own positive form of uniqueness. The guest list isn’t too lengthy or overwhelming, and contains quite a few names we’re excited to meet. We presume there’ll be nifty new things to buy, too.

Now it’s Friday night and I’m still not ready. I’ve had a busy week (not all of it was my fault) and my attention span has been stretched to its limits in myriad directions. I’m really trying to concentrate and prepare for our big, fantabulous day of walking, shopping, walking, meeting, walking, cosplayers, walking, potentially talking to someone, and after that some more walking because my free parking is several blocks away. But I needed to unwind first before I could resume researching.

Right this way for tonight’s short, special presentation!

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