Wednesday, February 6, 2013        Edition: #4920

Either Sheet or Get Off the Air!

The New Zealand-based team behind the visual effects in “Lord Of the Rings” and “Avatar” has been hired to work on an update of the classic 1960s kids show “Thunderbirds”, which will be a mixture of live-action and CGI animation (“Thunderbirds Are Go!” is planned to debut in 2015) . . . Program syndicator Twentieth Television has announced “The Ricki Lake Show”, which premiered in September, will not continue into the 2013-14 season (back to reality TV shows, Ms Lake!) . . . Despite her alleged recent sleepover with her ex-, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez has reportedly still managed to squeeze in her weekly Bible study group (“Thou shalt not have breakup sex …”) . . . Troubled actress Amanda Bynes has moved out of her NYC apartment after being threatened with eviction (surprisingly, her super claims she’s not the ideal tenant) . . . “Parks & Recreation” and “The Office” veteran Rashida Jones and her writing partner have just landed a 2-year development deal with Warner Bros Television (basically, you get 2 years to crank out a hit or it’s sayonara) . . . As production wraps on the final season of AMC’s “Breaking Bad”, star Bryan Cranston has inked a deal to stay on with Sony Pictures Television in a ‘first-look deal’ (BS translation: They pay while he plays) . . . Meantime, Cranston’s co-star Anna Gunn has the lead in Bravo TV’s new hour-long pilot “Rita”, about an outspoken private-school teacher who’s struggling to raise 3 teenage children (does this sound like an entertaining break from your daily grind?) . . . And you can expect capes to become the next big fashion thing now that expectant royal Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge has been spotted sporting one while shopping, accessorized with a scarf, black leggings, and boots (“Look, up in the high street, it’s Super Mom!”).

• “American Idol” (FOX/CTV) – Male contestants compete in the Hollywood round in hope of making it to the semifinals.
• “Chelsea Lately” (E!) – Guest host Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters); Elton John (“Sound City”).
• “Conan” (TBS/CTV) – Dirty Projectors (“Swing Lo Magellan”).
• “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC/CityTV) – Gary Clark Jr (“Blak & Blu”).
• “Late Show With David Letterman” (CBS/NTV/Omni1) – Elvis tribute artist Justin Shandor.
• “Live With Kelly & Michael” (syndicated/CTV) – Reba McEntire (“Malibu Country”).
• “Marilyn Denis Show” (CTV/CTV2) – Shawn Desman (“Alive”).
• “The Talk” (CBS) – Lady Antebellum (“Downtown”).
• “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” (NBC/CTV2) – Tim McGraw (“Two Lanes Of Freedom”).
• “The View” (ABC/CTV) – Hunter Hayes (“Hunter Hayes”).

• Beyoncé – She’s being criticized by animal rights group PETA for wearing an outfit made from python skin, paneled iguana, and leather during her halftime Super Bowl show on Sunday. (They’ve still got a mad-on because she wore a mink coat at Obama’s inauguration last month.)
• Coldplay – Their 2003 hit “Clocks” has been voted ‘Best Song Of the Last Decade’ by listeners of BBC 6Music in celebration of its 10th birthday.
• fun. – They’ve announced a Summer headlining tour, the “Most Nights Summer Tour”, which kicks off in Toronto ON July 6th and wraps in Charlottesville VA September 26th. Tegan & Sara will open all dates.
• Jason Aldean – “The Only Way I Know” f/Luke Bryan & Eric Church, will become his 7th consecutive #1 single on both the “Billboard” and “Mediabase” charts this Thursday. The 2nd single off his platinum “Night Train” album, becomes his overall 11th career #1.
• Justin Timberlake – He’s currently working on a video for the single “Suit & Tie” with director David Fincher. The two previously worked together on the movie “The Social Network”.
• Lady Gaga – Her new tour rider demands diet foods, Jameson whisky, white leather couches, plus … a mannequin with pink pubic hair. Seriously. (Who does she think she is, Mariah?)
• Muse – They’ve tied the all-time record on “Billboard”/Nielsen’s ‘Alternative Songs’ airplay chart, as “Madness’ has spent 18 straight weeks at #1, the same feat accomplished by Foo Fighters’ “The Pretender” in 2007.
• *NSYNC – Lance Bass tells “Life & Style” magazine that a reunion of the boy-band – à la 98 Degrees, New Kids On the Block, or Backstreet Boys – is unlikely, if for no other reason than Justin Timberlake is simply too busy.
• Shakira – The 1st public photo of her 2-week-old son Milan (MY-len) can be viewed on the United Nations International Children’s Fund website, where she and soccer player-boyfriend Gerard Piqué are collecting donations in lieu of gifts. (Take note, greedy show biz parents!)

A BS selection of movies in the making …
• “All You Need Is Kill” – This week in London, Tom Cruise & Emily Blunt have begun shooting scenes for this upcoming sci-fi action film. The story follows Cruise’s character, who dies after each suicide mission against an alien race known as ‘Mimics’. But he awakens each time, armed with better knowledge on how to succeed. The movie’s expected in theaters in 2014.
• “Black Mass” – Johnny Depp has signed on to play infamous Boston gangster Whitey Bulger, who topped the FBI’s Most Wanted List for years before his capture in 2011. Bulger was glorified as a ‘Robin Hood’-type character. But while he was beloved by many, he was eventually indicted for 19 murders. The film starts shooting in May.
• “The Book Thief” – French-Canadian actress Sophie Nelisse (“Monsieur Lahzar”) makes her English-language debut as the title character in this WW2 drama to be directed by Brian Percival (“Downton Abbey”). Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson co-star in the adaptation of Markus Zusak’s best-selling novel which spent over 280 weeks on best-seller charts.
• “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” – Actress Emily VanCamp (“Revenge”, “Everwood”) has seemingly come out of nowhere to land the female lead. Marvel Studios auditioned a lot of actresses for this part, still officially unnamed but assumed to be ‘SHIELD’ agent ‘Sharon Carter’, whom may appear in future “Avengers” instalments as well. The film’s due in 2014.
• “The Hulk” – Marvel Studios is reportedly planning a stand-alone movie featuring Mark Ruffalo’s character from “The Avengers”. It’s likely to follow 2015’s sequel to the superhero ensemble film which will see the ‘Hulk’ shipped into space, setting up the scenario for a film based on ‘Planet Hulk’. The character has already been the subject of 2 previous feature films.

Phone booths and kiosks have been quietly disappearing for the past 25 years, ever since the advent of the cellphone in 1973. Some of those that remain have been resurrected and re-purposed for other needs. In Japan and France, phone booths have been transformed into aquariums; in NYC, they’ve been made into lending libraries and art galleries; in the British Virgin Islands, some phone booths are now showers; and in Finland, a few have been remodeled into bathrooms. Elsewhere, many have been transformed into WiFi hotspots. (Where’s Superman going to change now?)
– “Los Angeles Review of Books”

• Change clothes (36%).
• Read the newspaper (20%).
• Shave (8%).
• Check email, now illegal in many areas (2%).
– Yahoo! Autos

What is it about 20-somethings? Recent research shows that there really is something deeply, weirdly memorable about this period of our lives and it plays a big role in how we structure our expectations, stories, and memories. The basic finding is this: We remember more events from late adolescence and early adulthood than from any other stage of life, a phenomenon called the ‘Reminiscence Bump’. Memory researchers still aren’t completely sure what causes us to drench those years with special importance. (It’s due to all the firsts, no? First real job … first real firing. First serious relationship … first traumatic bust-up.)

Newly-published research shows that our reaction times are up to 10% faster … while chewing gum. The Japanese study tested 2 sets of volunteers, one chewing and one not chewing gum. Chewers consistently showed better reaction times. It seems that as many as 8 different areas of the brain are affected by the act of chewing. One theory is that it increases arousal and leads to temporary improvement in blood flow to the brain. (So how come [co-host] has trouble walking and chewing gum?)
– “The Independent”

New terms leaking into our lingo …
• ‘iPub’ – A pub with iPads on its tables to speed up ordering time for customers. Patrons use a magnetic swipe card from the bar to buy drinks via the tablet. They then pour drinks themselves from taps installed on the table. (Pour-your-own pubs …. what could possibly go wrong?)
• ‘Like-gating’ – Requiring a social-network user to ‘like’ a page in order to access desirable online content from that brand. (Basically, extorting a recommendation.)
• ‘Social Swearing’ – Casual swearing that helps to define and bind a social group. Using 4-letter words among colleagues is often perceived as a way of bonding. ‘Annoyance swearing’, on the other hand, is dropping an expletive to cut tension in the office.

The Brain Sciences Division at Imperial College London has identified a substance that is alcohol-free but acts as a substitute. The non-toxic compound is now being tested on human subjects and could be on sale in 2 years. The as-yet-unnamed synthetic is said to reproduce alcohol’s desirable effects such as sociability and relaxation, but without the negative effects such as nausea. (… fistfights, divorces, public embarrassment, lost pants …)
– “Wired”

• Eating horsemeat is called ‘hippophagy’. (Historically, more accepted in Europe … pass the Seabiscuit.)
– BBC News
• There are 2 firms in the world that are working on cloning polo ponies. (In case a rider gets hungry mid-match?)
– “The Economist”
• Male birds become more attractive to females when they go grey. (Especially if they’re stinking, filthy rich.)
– “The Times of London”


1962 [51] Axl Rose (William Rose Jr), Lafayette IN, rock singer (Guns N Roses-“Chinese Democracy”, “Sweet Child O’ Mine”)

1962 [51] Richie McDonald, Lubbock TX, country singer (“How Do I Just Stop”, Lonestar-“Tell Her”)

1964 [49] Gordon Downie, Amherstview ON, rock singer (Tragically Hip-“Bobcaygeon”, “Poets”)

1966 [47] Rick Astley, Newton-le-Willows UK, pop singer (“Never Gonna Give You Up”, “Together Forever”) who enjoyed a brief resurgence thanks to the Internet meme ‘Rickrolling’

1985 [28] Kris Humphries, Minneapolis MN, NBA basketball player (Brooklyn Nets)/infamously wed to reality TV star Kim Kardashian for 72 days (August 20-October 31, 2011)

1990 [23] Adam Henrique, Brantford ON, NHL center (New Jersey Devils)

• “Digital Learning Day”, an annual observance to spotlight the effective use of technology in today’s classrooms.

• “Girls & Women in Sports Day”, the 27th celebration of women who ‘Stay Strong, Play On’. This year’s theme, “Girls in Sports, An Investment In the Future.”

• “Pay-A-Compliment Day”, the 19th annual observance that encourages us to focus on telling people how much we appreciate their presence in our lives.

• “Reggae Day”, in celebration of the spirit of the music made popular worldwide by Bob Marley, who was born on this day in 1945 (died May 11, 1981). It’s celebrated as “Bob Marley Day” in Rastafarianism (Jamaica and Ethiopia).

• “Waitangi Day” in New Zealand (aka “New Zealand Day”), commemorating the signing of a treaty in 1840 by a group of Maori chiefs and the British Government. It’s a national holiday.

1993 [20] Tennis champion Arthur Ashe dies in NYC at age 49 of complications from AIDS,  likely contracted from a tainted blood transfusion

2003 [10] ABC-TV’s “20/20” features Martin Bashir’s British TV documentary “Living With Michael Jackson” in which he admits he has ‘sleep-overs’ with young boys

1952 [61] Queen Elizabeth II ascends to the British throne (thereby assuring Helen Mirren of an Academy Award)

2006 [07] Stephen Harper is sworn in as Canada’s 22nd Prime Minister as the Conservatives officially take over power in Ottawa

1990 [23] Steve Briers recites the lyrics of Queen’s album “A Night At the Opera” backwards in 9 minutes 58.44 seconds on BBC4 in London, a world record for backwards talking

[Thurs] “Community” season debut (NBC)
[Thurs] Ballet Day
[Thurs] Wave All Your Fingers at Your Neighbor’s Day
[Fri] “Identity Thief”; “Side Effects”; “Top Gun” (IMAX 3D) open in movie theaters
[Fri] 2013 MusiCares Person Of the Year (Los Angeles)
[Fri] Laugh & Get Rich Day
[Fri] Opera Day
This Week Is … Boy Scout Anniversary Week
This Month Is … Jobs in Golf Month


• “Power Rangers” – 5 high school kids fight the band GWAR using plastic swords they bought at Target.
• “Yo Gabba Gabba” – In an alternate universe, a rail-thin DJ dressed like Bjork tricks 5 innocent monsters into hanging out with Sarah Silverman.
• “Wonder Pets” – A hamster, turtle, and baby chicken band together to think of incredibly dangerous ways to transport armadillos and elephants while singing.
• “Caillou” – A 4-year-old boy attempts to send his parents to a mental institution so he can steal from his sister with impunity.
• “Dora the Explorer” – The relentless saga of a runaway girl’s quest for various trinkets (Vicodin) which she imagines while high on cocaine and mushrooms.
• “Go, Diego, Go” – Dora The Explorer’s cousin attempts to compensate for his inferiority complex by learning how to speak Jaguar.
• “My Little Pony” – “Mean Girls”, only with horses.
• “Bob the Builder” – The story of how a smalltown handyman, careless scarecrow, and an ex-field hockey player with huge boobs, convince an insecure backhoe to do all their dirty work.

It’s not the fall that kills you, it’s the sudden stop.

☎ What’s the best perk of your job?

Question: 85% of the time, men pay THIS; women just 15% of the time.
Answer: Child support.

The confidence of ignorance will always overcome the indecision of knowledge.

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