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Category Archives: Brainstorming

Louis C.K. should direct every sex scene in every romantic comedy—every single one. I watched Bridesmaids recently, and Kristen Wiig has two sex scenes where she wears a bra the entire time. The first scene is hilarious, with Wiig’s extreme discomfort, but no one dresses like this. The bra comes off eventually. I’m not picking on Bridesmaids, but the rom-com industry needs to put a stop to this practice immediately. I’ve seen it in Knocked Up (also twice!) and countless other pictures have the same problem. The first time in Knocked Up, it could have even been addresses as drunken fumbling, directly tying into the condom problem a minute later. It’s not a particularly difficult fix, I just get the sense that no one cares. The thing is, though, every time I see this, it kills the illusion that I’m watching people engage in an awkward act of lovemaking rather than actors portraying them. It just looks so unnatural.

Then, I wondered if I had ever seen a funny sex scene in a movie like this, and the answer is no. I did, however, see several in a television program, namely HBO’s Lucky Louie. It figures that Louis would be the genius to come up with the simplest solution this problem. Pamela Adlon, the actress playing his wife, would wear some kind of slip or nightie thing in their love scenes. It looked good, too, because it looked like something a woman might keep on when she fucks. They were sexy without being too binding or weird, she kept covered what she had to get paid extra to show, and the only unnatural or objectionable thing in those scenes was Louis’s penis. But that’s a different matter.

Young Adult, while not at all a romantic comedy, got around the nudity problem in a way that was in keeping with its weird protagonist’s style. Each time Mavis (Charlize Theron) was semi-nude (twice again!), she kept these flesh-colored rubber bra-cups on, or was still wearing them when waking up drunk. It was a creative way around showing her breasts fully, something we’ll be too hung up on to do for a long time to come, that felt right for the character.

I’m not asking to see actresses’ tits. Someone will leak those from her cellphone anyway. I’m not suggesting that the directors of the films mentioned are doing their jobs poorly, either. I just think that the movies should take a tip from a guy who’s already conquered their problem. It’s the idea of the bra in the love scene that needs to go away. Don’t rest on it, think of something else. There are still more ways to show women in a natural, sexual light without relying on something that just doesn’t belong there. Likely the first step is just to ask her what she thinks.

Is G.I. Joe: The Movie the pinnacle, the apex, the very zenith of modern filmmaking? In a word, yes. With voice talent ranging from Sir Don Johnson to 17 time Emmy Winner Burgess Meredith (16 separate episodes of the Twilight Zone and one for Batman’s “A Penguin for All Seasons”) no cast has ever been more celebrated. The story of nature’s struggle against the military-industrial complex, only to be crushed, burned and mutilated over and over, is presented in rich layers of ninjitsu, genetic mutation, laser gun shootouts and, of course, professional wrestling drill instructors. Golobulus fights on in his hopeless cause only to be thwarted time and again by the cruel General Hawk, spurred on by the grief instilled in him by the fall of his lover, Duke, thanks to a misplaced Cobra-La snake-javelin. What in another film would be the catalyst of farce in this fans the great flame of a war of extinction, with both sides growing more bitter and hardened with each shot fired, each satellite launched, each machine gunner blinded and saddled with a creature whom was “once a man,” to quote just one bit of the brilliant dialogue. Let not a dry eye remain at the end of this tragedy, lest you surrender your very humanity in a gesture on par with that of Cobra Commander himself. 10 stars, perfection doubled

In a recent development that I learned of on the AV Club, http://www.avclub.com/articles/next-james-bond-film-delayed-indefinitely,40275/ (into which I did exactly no further research) the latest James Bond film will be delayed indefinitely. Given the lackluster nature of the franchise since its reboot as an action series first, last and always, I can’t say that I’m terribly distressed about this development. The first in the relaunch, the updated-for-the-2000s Casino Royale was entertaining in its opening and had potential to be better than it was. Where it failed was featuring 60 minutes of the most bandwagon jumping pandering since the blaxpoilation of Live and Let Die, the Texas Hold ‘Em game. Yes, poker was all the rage that year. So what? Does that make it worthy of the world’s foremost superspy and the villain he is called upon to thwart? The series has been guilty of bandwagon jumpery since before the kung fu school of The Man With the Golden Gun and the chicken-fried comedy of Sheriff J. W. Pepper in both previously mentioned films, but it doesn’t help you in the first film of your continuity reboot to do this. The sheer amount of time devoted to showing this game being played ground the film to a near halt, too, besides the fact that the game sheared a good deal of the glamour from the character. I just never could see Bond, James Bond as a poker player.

The action of the series has taken a definite trip too much to the forefront. The opening chase in Casino Royale helped define the character through his actions, in that when faced with an athletically superior opponent and having no hope of catching him Bond will throw his body on the line to achieve his goal. He took some harsh falls in that, sacrificing himself out of dedication to his job. That’s what made that scene work for me. Then later he got down to some spy work, which is exactly what Quantum of Solace forgot to put into the movie. I don’t recall Bond doing any spying at all. The movie to me was a chase scene, followed by a gun battle, which led to knife fight that ultimately broke down into a punch up, where Bond was the last man standing. He was much more John Matrix than James Bond in it. Just as I didn’t care for Batman venturing into Bond territory in the international kidnapping scene from The Dark Knight, I had no interest in Bond as a straight up action hero, killing everyone in his path. While the series did desperately need a revision of its methodology and a jettison of the blatant cheesiness it had become known for, scrapping the core concept is going too far. At this rate my best guess for the next Bond film, given that it must a) jump a popular bandwagon and b) add needless violence to a character whom is supposed to be engaging in subtlety, is that Bond goes undercover in the world of MMA, fighting a tournament until he reaches a match with the super villain arms dealer and Brazilian jiu-jitsu master in the final round. So, yeah, delay away on that.

Given the way that Hasbro has neatly absorbed the former Kenner M.A.S.K. toy line into their G.I. Joe Real American Hero line I wondered how many other plausible 1980s franchises could easily be co-opted into the same kind of fate. They also recruited some Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat dudes at one time but the 1990s don’t have the same goofy nostalgia for me so fuck them. So, because I’m bored and my flight is delayed and I’m too infant fatigued to focus on any real work, here goes some airport brainstorming.

Top 1980s Properties to be retconned as part of the G.I. Joe Real American Hero line:

The Karate Kid- The story behind this is that Cobra wants to brainwash the youth they recruit early on in their lives. They open a school under the supervision of karate instructor and covert recruiter John Kreese. The Cobra Kai Dojo (Coincidence? I think not.) churns out dozens of highly trained, ruthless young men per year who are eager to don the sea foam green of the Cobra Ninja Corps. To counteract this, G.I. Joe has established their own resident master, Mr. Miyagi, in the Los Angeles area. Though less prolific than Kreese, Miyagi turns out a higher quality of never-say-die recruit, perfect for Joe standards.

Joes: Four Pack of The Best Around including Mr. Miyagi, Daniel-San, Quick Kick w/ Blue Rising Sun shuriken sash and Hillary Swank as The Next Karate Kid, crane kicking beach post, waxing rags (on and off), fly catching chopsticks and Best of the Karate Kid cartoon series DVD

Cobras: Four Pack of Cobra Kai Dojo including Johnny, John Kreese, Cobra Ninja and the ponytail douche from III, body bags, mummy costume and More Best of the Karate Kid cartoon series DVD

Chances of success: Off the chain

TRON- As much as a Destro-headed Master CPU sounds pretty awesome, I have to deny this one. Mainframe and TRON riding laser cycles and hurling light Frisbees and jai alai balls at the Evil Red Program Sark and Dr. Mindbender just doesn’t sound- snap, you know what? I think I just talked myself into this one after all. Their mission is to defend an ARPA-net style network from Cobra espionage programs.

Joes: Four pack of TRON and the J.O.E.-Net Defenders, including TRON, Yori, the chick from TRON, Mainframe in yellow “hacker” circuitry and just because, Matthew Broderick from War Games, including light paddles, balls and Frisbees and a wireless keyboard for Broderick, and a TRON DVD

TRON Light Cycle Playset includes Blue Light Cycle and Bruce Boxleitner figure with blue cellophane “Light Walls”

Cobra: Four Pack of Cobra Net-Raiders, including Dr. Mindbender, the Evil Red Program Sark from TRON, Tele-Viper in green circuitry and a Destro-headed Master CPU figure, including red paddles, balls and Frisbees and a wireless keyboard for Mindbender, and a Behind the TRON Scenes special features DVD

Cobra TRON Light Cycle Playset includes Red Light Cycle and Red Guard figure with Red cellophane “Light Walls”

Chances of success: Incalculable

The Goonies– An all grown up squad of Goonies is recruited by the Joes for their past expertise to deal with Cobra’s newest recruits: The Fratelli Family!

Joes: Five Pack of The Goonies, including Mikey, Data, Mouth, Chunk and Pirate Sloth, with sword and pirate hat, boxing glove belt, skate shoes, half of One-Eyed Willie’s new treasure map, broken David statue and Baby Ruth candy bar, and Goonies R Good Enuff music video by Cindy Lauper DVD

Cobra: Five Pack Cobra Fratelli Family, including Ma, Robert Davi and Joe Pants Fratelli, the Headman and a Cobra Tele-Viper, with pistols, machine guns, half of One-Eyed Willie’s new treasure map and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun music video DVD, also by Cindy Lauper and also featuring Captain Lou Albano

Chances of success: Good Enuff

Mr. T­- This one is a little different. It has no Cobra counterpart because what could they come up with to be the equal of Mr. T? You’re damn right nothin’. He shows up when he’s needed in his van and he leaves when he feels like his job is done. Which is when everything is demolished.

Joes: Mr. T and the Toughest Van in the World Playset includes a Mr. T figure with welding kit, tool box, machine gun and the dog with a Mohawk wearing gold chains from the cartoon because that’s still awesome, urban camouflage custom van with machine gunner nest, DVD copy of The Toughest Man in the World

Chances of success: 100%, Sucka

Breakin’- My scenario revolves around Cobra’s scheme to close all youth rec centers, thus ensuring bored youths making trouble and becoming ripe for recruitment as juvenile delinquents. The Joes are forced to counter this measure with an equally goofy plan: to put their own troops in the streets to ensure that these rec centers are kept open. Mainly this stems from my desire to see a three pack of Turbo, Ozone and Special K who come with real parachute pants accessories.

Joes: Four Pack of Body Rockin’ Commandoes, including Turbo, Ozone and Special K with pop out parachutes in their pants and Snake Eyes from that episode where he busted out a breakdancing routine of his own, sheets of cardboard and figures with Pop-Lock Grip feature, and Breakin’ DVD

Cobras: Four Pack of Electro Rock Takeover, including Corporate Raider Tomax and Xamot (in suits), Poppin’ Taco and Breakin’ Machine B.A.T. with Cobra logo dance mat and Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo DVD

Odds of success: Wicked