Category: Weekly Reviews

 

American Horror Story got off to a smashing-good start on Wednesday.

But here’s the thing: American Horror Story always gets off to a smashing-good start. And then it drops off in quality — sometimes quickly, sometimes gradually.

As always, the show has impressive production design and top-notch technical aspects – photography, sound, direction, you name it. Alas and alack, at some point you can expect the story to go off the rails.

 

We could complain about the unrelenting gayness of AHS (see crotch, above), but this is a Ryan Murphy show, so we’re afraid that’s a lost cause.

 

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Politics Makes Depressing Bedfellows

 

It never fails. I will be presented with a choice between Political Position A and Political Position B. I will favor, say, Position B. Later, I will turn on cable news and see someone advocating for my favored position. This person will be repulsive.

I will then be forced to choose: Stay with Position B and become a reluctant ally with this revolting person, or … turn the channel, I guess.

 

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Since “white privilege” is now one of the cardinal sins of American life, will someone please explain why Cokie Roberts – daughter of powerful Democrat politicians and a Wellesley College alumnus – is now being venerated by our media?

 

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If you enjoyed our recent post about the “Flasher King,” here are two girls on a beach – one of them topless and scratching her ass – who spot a naked guy and decide to film him, not realizing that they are also being filmed.

Gotta love Millennials and the age of cell-phone cameras, right?

 

 

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Felicity Huffman is going to prison for 14 days? Hmmm.

One commentator said that, in reality, this will likely amount to 10 or 11 days in prison for the TV star. Someone else said that, due to administrative and processing time, she will likely spend only a few days behind bars.

I fully expect to hear soon that, due to this or due to that, Huffman will really spend two or three minutes in the slammer.

 

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Imagine my surprise and confusion when I read this (apparent) photo caption on the Decider Web site:

 

 

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In our quest to gradually turn The Grouchy Editor into a full-blown porn site (see last week’s video clip from Showtime’s Carnival Row), please enjoy this week’s clip from Power, featuring Candace Neolani Maxwell, also pictured above:

 

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Yet another hot chick

 

 

This isn’t soft-core porn, but if you enjoy hot girls who are actually funny in YouTube videos, here is Lara Fraser from The Daily Dropout:

 

 

If you feel this pivot to hot girls is a bad move by our Web site, consider the alternative: stories about Democrats debating.

We rest our case.

 

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Dave Chappelle ruffled some feathers with his latest Netflix stand-up special, so I had to check it out to see if he would ruffle my feathers.

My feathers are unruffled. I must be getting old.

In one corner, there are social-justice warriors who are offended by Chappelle’s politically incorrect jokes. In the other corner, political pundits like Tim Pool (I seem to be referencing Pool a lot recently; perhaps I need to get out of the house more often, away from YouTube) are hailing Chappelle as a legendary genius.

I watched the special, Sticks & Stones, and thought it was … interesting. That’s my reaction to most comedians these days: They are interesting.

None of them make me actually laugh. The last one to make me laugh out loud was probably Louis C.K., and he’s now branded as a pervert.

I must be getting old. Either that or I’m just a pervert.

 

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Since we’ve established that I’m probably a pervert, enjoy this video of British actress Tamzin Merchant getting poked by some black dude wearing a unicorn costume. Or a centaur costume. Or whatever it is. It’s from Amazon’s new series Carnival Row:

 

 

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Waxing Philosophical

 

We are told by the “experts” that there are two factions fighting for control of the country: the left, which leans globalist and strives for a more diverse and egalitarian future, and the right, which prefers the status quo or, perhaps, a return to the “idyllic” past (like the 1950s). If this is true, in which camp do you find yourself?

I keep thinking of the movie American Graffiti. When I think of the America that I like, I think of that film, which is set in 1962, a bit ahead of my time. If you watch the movie and lean to the left (politically), one of the first things you might notice is its lack of blacks, gays, Hispanics, Asians, et al. It is about a bunch of white kids.

But if you are a member of one of those minority groups, imagine for a moment that you are represented in the movie; not as an “other,” but just as a regular kid. Isn’t that world appealing? The movie is about hope and dreams and youth and the birth of rock and roll and sadness and change. But mostly it’s a nice world, a good place.

Of course, it’s a fantasy world. Hollywood is, after all, the Dream Factory, and that’s what movies do.

We don’t have that world; we have Twitter.

 

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My

(two cents)

 

People need to stop dickering with the English language just to suit their political goals. Conservatives are mocking San Francisco for attempting to abolish words like “felon” and “convict” in favor of euphemisms like “justice-involved person.”

I agree with the conservatives; San Francisco deserves to be mocked. However … there are plenty of conservatives on Fox News who seem to want to abolish the word “rich” in favor of the euphemism “successful.”

Just stop it – all of you.

 

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Seems to me Trump is at the disadvantage in this tariffs battle with China.

We have one country (China) that doesn’t mind if tariffs make its people suffer. We have another country (us) that will punish any politician who makes us the least bit uncomfortable.

So which side do you think will endure the most pain?

 

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Just because there’s more good TV than ever, doesn’t mean that it’s easy to find. In fact, because so many new series get cranked out every week, it’s harder to find a good one.

When it comes to new TV shows, I used to rely on the critics at Rotten Tomatoes to steer me in the right direction. Not so much anymore. I haven’t heard of most of these critics, a lot of whom hail from obscure Web sites. Way too many of them are youthful social-justice warriors more interested in diversity than in something like, say, quality.

But you can, of course, rely on my judgment, and I’ve just seen the first two episodes of the second season of Mindhunter (pictured above) on Netflix. So far, it looks even better than its first season, and the first season was superb.

 

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Why don’t we just buy Greenland and give it to Israel? The Israelis can move there, the Palestinians can have Israel, and the Middle East problem will be solved.

Or not.

 

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I’m sure we’ll get to the bottom of the Jeffrey Epstein murder-or-suicide because both Democrats and Republicans want the truth …

… of course, Democrats want the truth only if it implicates Trump, and Republicans want the truth only if it implicates Clinton. And so … we’ll probably never get to the bottom of it.

After all, there are still doubters about the official versions of Kennedy’s assassination, Marilyn Monroe’s death, etc. So why should Epstein be any different?

 

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“We should rip Barron Trump from his mother’s arms and put him in a cage with pedophiles.”

— Peter Fonda on Twitter last year, a quote that was strangely missing from many of this week’s fawning obituaries about the actor.

 

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It does kind of remind me of the famous World War II poster of Uncle Sam.

 

 

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The Hunt

 

If you just read the synopsis of this upcoming (see below) movie, your immediate reaction could well be, “What is Hollywood thinking?  Liberal elites hunt down Trump supporters?”

But if you watch the trailer, you might have an entirely different opinion. Looks to me like the thing might actually be pro-Deplorable. If that’s the case, won’t a lot of people feel silly for criticizing it?

Of course not.

 

Editor’s Note:  The film studio just announced it is cancelling The Hunt’s September release. Not to worry: I imagine that, just like The Interview several years ago, the movie will eventually be released for streaming and we’ll all find out the fuss was much ado about nothing.

 

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Watching the media these days, I get the strong impression that we are on the verge of civil war.

Here’s a suggestion: Let the media fight the civil war and the rest of us will watch on television.

Rush Limbaugh, Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham can battle Bill Maher, Sarah Silverman, and Jim Acosta. I’d watch that. Wouldn’t you?

 

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Big Tech Battle

 

Are Twitter and Facebook more like a newspaper or the phone company? If the former, you have to let us sue them when they misbehave. If the latter, they can’t be allowed to censor anything that doesn’t already break the law.

I vote for the latter. Treating them like Ma Bell won’t be pretty, and the Wild West will rule social media, but hey, you can always block, mute, or unfriend.

Problem right now is, these “algorithms” don’t work worth a shit.

 

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Unpopular Thought No. 1:

If our parents and grandparents were truly “the greatest generation,” then why did they do such a lousy job raising their spoiled-brat children (the Boomers — my group), which in turn did an even lousier job raising their spoiled-brat children (the Millennials)? Just asking.

 

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Unpopular Thought No. 2:

Farmers pride themselves on their supposed independence, yet with their endless government bailouts and subsidies, aren’t they our biggest welfare recipients? Just asking.

 

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Unpopular Thought No. 3:

Listen, I’m no gun nut. If you believe the world would be a better place with absolutely no guns, I’m with you. But if you scratch your head when the pro-gun people resist every attempt to regulate gun ownership, I have two clichés for you: “slippery slope” and “if you give them an inch, they’ll take a mile.” Those might be clichés, but that doesn’t make them untrue.

I know this, because incremental regulation worked well for the anti-smoker brigade. I’m a smoker who watched “common sense” regulations progress from no smoking on airplanes to where we are today, which is basically treating smokers like lepers oozing disease from their pores.

The gun people watched that happen, too. So that’s probably why they fight every little attempt to regulate them.

 

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Far be it from me to add fuel to the fire of conspiracy theories. However …

What do (dead) Jeffrey Epstein and (living) Jim Comey have in common?

Answer: They both potentially have/had very damaging dirt on the rich and powerful. Epstein is now conveniently dead, and Comey last month escaped charges from the Justice Department, which is very convenient for him.

Moral of the story: If you are a convenience store clerk who dreams of joining the rich and powerful, be content with your lot in life. Joining the rich and powerful can be hazardous to your health.

 

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We’re feeling especially lazy this week, so the “Review” will be short and sweet. Well, short, anyway.

 

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I was Internet surfing and came across this shot from Piranha 3D:

 

 

I think every woman who has ever asked, “Do these pants make my ass look fat?” should take note that, compared to water, your pants ain’t nothin’ to worry about.

 

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Money Heist: Part 3 has a plot that’s often just as ridiculous as in earlier seasons, but at times it’s a wildly entertaining ride. The final episode, especially, was packed with twists and turns.

And the pregnant cop (below) as villain? A stroke of genius.

 

 

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Between rancorous politics and mass shootings and just things in general, I’m thinking this might be a great time to move to New Zealand.

Can I smoke in New Zealand?

 

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There’s a Reason Our State Bird Is the Loon

 

There is a woman who follows me on Twitter (I also follow her), whom I don’t really know. I don’t recall how we became mutual followers. But looking at her avatar, she appears to be just an ordinary female American, possibly a soccer mom, possibly not. I believe she mentioned in one of her tweets that she is 52 years old.

But looking at my feed in recent weeks, it appears that she’s become more active. Here is a sampling of what she’s had to say:

 

 

Mind you, this sampling is just from the past 24 hours. These rants go on all day, every day.

Why in hell is she so angry?

 

What is it about Donald Trump that has driven so many Democrats off the deep end?

I think it’s the Rocky syndrome. In America, there is no story or myth more powerful than that of the underdog rising up against insurmountable odds to triumph. It’s how we were born:  rag-tag patriots knocking off the all-powerful British Redcoats.

And it’s how Rocky Balboa became a movie legend in 1976, not quite defeating, but going the distance, against Apollo Creed. Granted, Donald Trump is no humble nice guy like Rocky was. But in November 2016 he pulled a Rocky for the ages.

Now imagine you are on the wrong side of that shocking event. You are a Democrat and you voted for Hillary. But on November 8 you became the British in 1776, or Apollo Creed in 1976. You are the loser and the villain.

That’s a hard pill to swallow.

That’s why the Democrats have lost their marbles.

 

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Of course, I could be wrong. In the past, I’ve voted for certain Democrats, which no doubt makes me a naïve fool in the minds of some on the right. I’ve also voted for certain Republicans, which no doubt makes me an evil bastard in the minds of some on the left.

In my defense, I live in Minnesota. This is a state that gave the world Ilhan Omar and now this woman, who plans to run against her:

 

 

OK, so many problems here. First, I have no idea who the dude in the MAGA hat is. Also, this is Minnesota, and Minnesotans don’t say “y’all” the way the guy introducing this young lady does.

But remember, this is the state that gave the world Jesse Ventura and Al Franken, so you can’t really be surprised by Stella, who, by the way, has apparently been charged with this:

 

 

I’m from Minnesota, where there is no shortage of loons. Most of them seem to be in politics.

 

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Where I was when …

 

The first men walked on the moon:

With my family on vacation at a lakeside resort in Minnesota called Izatys. I recall (hazily — hey, I was a young fart) a small group of us vacationers huddled around a black-and-white TV in the resort’s recreation room, watching the famously grainy images of Neil Armstrong and company on the moon. If there was cheering or any other overt displays of emotion from our small group, I don’t recall it.

 

Kennedy was assassinated:

Have to admit I’m not sure, because I was basically a toddler. I do remember playing on the living-room floor of a neighbor’s house while the tragic event was being endlessly discussed on television. I also recall – I think – that dinner with my family was an especially somber occasion that evening.

 

The terrorists attacked the U.S. on September 11, 2001:

At home getting ready for work, listening to the radio describe a plane crashing into the World Trade Center. I believe that at first they thought it was a small airplane. Later, at work, we spent most of the day watching CNN report the dramatic developments.

 

Ilhan Omar married her brother:

Probably at home alone, possibly masturbating.

 

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Speaking of Ilhan Omar … I got an e-mail the other night inviting me to the Minneapolis airport (about a 20-minute drive) to welcome her home from D.C.

I thought about going and wearing a MAGA hat, just to see what would happen. But I decided not to because a) I don’t own a MAGA hat, and b) I value my life.

 

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I might have hyped this show before, but if you like funny and you dig British comedy, check out Trigger Happy TV on YouTube.  As far as I can tell, it’s the clear inspiration for YouTube channels like The Daily Dropout, Vlog Creations, Jack Vale Films – you name it.

 

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Babe of the Week: Jessica Sula

 

I was watching the third season of Scream (don’t ask why; it wasn’t anything special) and wondered where I had seen the cute actress who played “Liv.” Oh, yeah, she was the bare-bottomed lass who gets butt-whipped in Godless:

 

 

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Where do they find these courtroom “artists”? This woman is supposed to be a beauty queen? And check out those shoulder pads on El Chapo.

 

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Talk about fortunate timing. I’m referring to the producers of the movie Crawl (above), an alligators-and-hurricane thriller that opens just as Hurricane Barry barrels into the southern coast.

Although I suppose it won’t set any box-office records in New Orleans.

 

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Last week I said that Stranger Things doesn’t appear to be overly political.

Can’t say the same for Netflix, which caved to social justice warriors and will no longer allow smoking on shows like Stranger Things.

What’s next — going to use digital technology to delete Humphrey Bogart’s cigarettes from old movies like Casablanca?

Oh, hell. I shouldn’t have said that. They’re probably working on it right now.

 

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America’s biggest problem? I think YouTube pundit Tim Pool nails it in this video:

 

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Good golly, The Donald is in for some heavy criticism no matter what happens during tomorrow’s promised purge of illegal immigrants.

You just know that the media is salivating at the prospect of documenting “families torn apart,” making Trump look as cruel as possible. Democrats will liken it to Jews being crammed onto trains bound for Auschwitz.

But if Trump calls the purge off or limits it to just a small number of violators, the right will howl that, when it comes to immigration, Trump is once again simply a boy calling “wolf.”

 

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