Monday, September 28, 2009

Brett Favre Sporcle

Check out the great Sporcle quiz I made - Brett Favre Touchdown Passes
You need to name every player that caught a Favre TD pass for the Packers, because we all know his Jets and Vikings ones don't really count.
There are some obviously ones and some pretty, pretty obscure.
Have fun, let me know how you did.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Lost Thoughts

The new TV season has begun, so I thought I'd give you a little Lost post, as it won't be back until January. Boo.
Um, Lost and lists, two of my favorite things. I will put them together. Here is my list of top 5 Lost Characters
Top 5 Lost Character (Pre-Season 5)

1. Desmond - Desmond is the man. No doubt. He was present for all the great episodes -the premiere and finale of season two, and for most of the best he was the main character - "Flashes Before Your Eyes, Catch-22, and when I hadn't yet seen season 4, I remember everyone telling me I needed to see "The Constant" and it didn't disappoint.
He is a cool, serious guy. He can get drunk with you or talk philosophically. I think he brings important balance, someone outside of the Oceanic 815 survivors and the Others. I even downloaded Mama Cass's "Make Your Own Kind of Music" due in large part to Desmond.
2. Daniel - Great addition to the show. I was skeptical with the addition of more new characters in season 4, but I enjoy Daniel, Charlotte, Frank, and Miles. Daniel is obviously the best of them. He has humanity and a bit of compassion. Every time he is on screen, you want to know more about him, you want to see more of him. Skinny tie. Super genius who can't remember anything. Present in "The Constant" and you just root for this guy.
3. Bernard - Just a minor character, but I really like Bernard. He only had one flash-back episode, but he is just a normal guy. Him and Rose are great. I really liked when he kicked butt in the finale of Season 3 and when he was talking to Jin about relationships.
4. Mr. Eko - Eko was a favorite for a while, then he died. I think he had less than a season on the show, but he was a great character. He pretty much dominated everyone that came against him. His beat stick was great. He was a priest (sort of) and his whole redemption story line was great. Someone I would want on my side. Then the Smoke Monster got him. Shoot
5. Sayid- Yeah, don't really need to say much about this guy. Awesome. Smart. Killer. I liked the whole working with Ben thing in Season 4. Interesting twist.



Top 5 Lost Characters (Post Season 5)


1. Daniel - Yep, after season 5, Daniel has taken over the top spot. He was really a main character during the entire season. Pretty much everyone looked to him to solve their problems. His loss of Charlotte was pretty sad stuff. He took on Alpert and the old others. We learned a bit more about his past, then he got killed. Damn. I hope he is back.
2. Desmond - Yep, dropped down to number 2. He just wasn't in the show enough. He did try to help, but was more concerned about his family. Boo.
3. Richard Alpert - A new addition to the list. Alpert is much like Daniel - everytime he is on screen you want more of him. There is still a large mystery to the character, which leaves you wanting more. Why doesn't he age? Why is he on the island? Why does he wear eyeliner? Why the name? I also like the fact that he seems to be neither a good guy or a bad guy.
There is much more to be revealed about Richard. And I'm ready to see it.
4. Mr. Eko - Still strong after being dead for 3 seasons.
5. Miles - I wasn't sure about Miles at first. I thought he could be a much better character, and he still can, but season 5 gave us a bit more about him. Lots of potential. The whole him being the son of Dr. Candle was kind of weird. His powers are cool, but again, like always for Lost, you want to know more about him.

A few other things. I used to really like Jack, but he has gone down steadily since the end of season two. Sawyer is now honorable mention. Unlike Jack, he has been moving up steadily over the years, especially season 5 when he was the leader of his little band, and away from Jack and Kate.

Let me know who you like best.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

If you got 10 minutes

This made me laugh out load at work. I was a bit too young for Mystery Science Theater 3000, but now I can appreciate it.
Enjoy!

video

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Stand - Casting Call

One of the favorite books that I have read over the past few years is Stephen King's The Stand. It's pretty epic. Lots of great characters and long enough for character development.
It was made into a 1994 TV mini-series supervised pretty closely by King. It was good I guess as most parts made it into the book. But some of the casting decisions are head scratchers to say the least. Check out how I woulda done it.

Tony Brown's Casting Call for The Stand:

Larry Underwood
TV Version - Adam Storke - pretty much the biggest thing this guy ever did, definitely not a launching off point for him
My Pick - Casey Affleck
Why? Larry is by far the best character in the book. He is real. He experiences growth. These amazing circumstances he has change him. This makes him more identifiable. You see a real journey. I would go with Affleck because he fits the character description well. He could be a blossoming rock star, he could be that age, he could abandon a woman and come back for her. I also like it that Affleck isn't super known, but in the Assassination of Jesse James movie, he really showed his dramatic ability. I think Affleck could pull off the internal journey of Larry Underwood.

Stu Redmond
TV Version - Gary Sinise - nothing wrong with this pick
My version - Matt Damon
Why? - Stu is kind of the backbone of the novel, pretty much in it from start to finish. He is the All-American, everyman kind of guy, not the most complex or exciting, but a hero nevertheless. I think Damon would be perfect for this.

Nadine
TV Version - Laura San Giacoma - Yes, the girl from Just Shoot Me with the big Quinn Buckner gap in her teeth. Worst choice ever.
My Pick - Rachel Weisz
Why? This may be the most perfect fit. Nadine is alluring and innocent, a bit older, virginal and capable of carrying a demon child. I originally thought of Kate Beckinsale, but she is too pretty and one-dimensional I think Weisz could pull of this dichotomy very well as evidenced by her variety of roles. .You could easily see why Larry and Flagg want her and why kids are drawn to her. Hers is the opposite journey as Larry's.

Fran
TV Version - Molly Ringwald - fits the role pretty well
My Pick - Liv Tyler
Why? Frannie is, well, kind of annoying. Molly Ringwald is that, as is Liv Tyler, but I think you would like Tyler a bit more. I thought of Evan Rachel Wood for this role, but I think she might be too good for it. Liv Tyler is a natural fit - womanly, young, strong at times, annoying at times, not too lovable.

Glen Bateman
TV Version - Ray Walston - this guy has done everything from My favorite Martian to Picket Fences. You might best recognize him as Mr. Hand in Fast Times At Ridgemont High
My Pick - Gene Hackman

Why? You really can't go wrong with Gene Hackman. Glen was an interesting character, a bit too all knowing at preachy at times. I think Hackman could bring both the intelligentsia and humanity to create a great Glen.

Nick
TV Version - Rob Lowe
My Pick - Don Cheadle or Djimon Hounsou or David Wenham
Why? I couldn't really pin this one down. Wenham is Faramir in Lord of the Rings and the narrator in 300. I love Hounsou in his dramatic roles. I think all three could really convey emotion, strength, and vulnerability without speaking. Complex, even tormented character, all three have shown they are up to that job.

Tom
TV Version - Bill Fagerbakke - big dude from Coach
My Version - ???
I really don't have anyone better for this role. Any suggestions?

Rita
TV Version - not in it
My Pick - Talia Shire - Rocky's Lady
Why? - This goes to my Larry Underwood preference. Rita is an integral part of his story, maybe not to The Stand as a whole, but big in Larry's journey. I couldn't leave her out.
I originally thought of Susan Sarandon for this one, the cougar of choice these days, but I think she is too attractive. I thought of Sharon Stone, but ended with Talia Shire because of her age, her acting ability, her hint of attractiveness, and I think she would be a great Rita for Larry.

Randall Flagg
TV Version - Jamey Sheridan - might recognize him from Law and Order: Criminal Intent
My Pick - Daniel Day Lewis or John Malcovich.
Why? These might be cliche picks, but I know both could kill the role. I might lean towards Day-Lewis due to his ability to be physically imposing. Think Gangs of New York. In Flagg you need someone scary, powerful, but also charismatic and alluring, so you can identify with the people on his side.

Trashcan Man
TV Version - Matt Frewer - Most Recently seen as Moloch in Watchmen
My pick - Gary Oldman
Why? I don't really recall an age for Trashy, just that he was F-ing crazy. Oldman could do this. I thought of Philip Seymour Hoffman as well and Ben from Lost. All might be too good for this role, but it is essential.

Ralph Brentner
TV Version - Peter Van Norden - Who?
My Pick - Brian Dennehy
Why? Another all American character. I just think Dennehy would be a perfect farmer. Maybe a bit too old. Considered James Gandolfini and Tommy Lee Jones, but Gandolfini will never be anything but Tony Soprano.

Harold
TV - Corin Nemec - aka Parker Lewis Can't Lose
My Pick - Emil Hirsch
Why? Another great character journey here. His is set in motion early, but you never really think he's going to go fully to the dark side. I don't really like Emil Hirsch, but he is a great actor. He has that depth to be the slimy Harold, to front for a long time, and have something hiding under the surface, and he seems to be alright with weight fluctuation as seen in Into the Wild, so adding some pounds wouldn't be a problem.

There you go. A much better version than the original. I should be a casting director! Let me know what you think, and where I went right/wrong.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wrigley

Making my second trip to Wrigley Field tonight for the game today and tomorrow. Two meaningless games for both teams. Remember last year how fun the Brewers were. So exciting. Now, nothing. I think about half my posts in Sept and October last year were on the Brewers. Man. 2009, not so hot. Bring back CC! I will have my CC shirt on tonight just for good measure.
Don't worry my friends and I will still rep hard for Milwaukee. Should be a fun time. I have to admit I do like Wrigleyville.


UPDATE -
So, turns out I went to the right games of the series. Lots of runs. A Jody Gerut grand slam. Wow! Wins by Looper and Bush. The stadium wasn't too hype due to both teams doing poorly. Last time I was there it was a tight race and I was in the bleachers, so the atmosphere was much more dope.
Cubs fans LOVE cheering for fly balls. Do they think they will be home runs?
Lots of Brewer fans around. That is cool. The "Miller Park South" shirts were nice.
Best part was my group of friends singing Roll Out the Barrel after Take me out to the ball game. A few other Brewer fans joined in, but it was mostly just us. We got lots and lots of boos. Pretty nice. We went to their place and did our thing. Brewers!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Comic books I found on my own

There are lots of great comic books out there. I've been a fan for years. I've read most of the best, or what most people consider to be the best. I've seen many lists of "Best Comic Stories Ever", best graphic novels, "Best Spider-Man or Batman Stories", lists which often times I used to develop my own reading list. So basically, most things, and I guess it goes for books and movies as well, I read because someone else said it was good. So when you happen about something you discover for yourself, you take a little ownership in it, and like it even a little more. And this is also connected to the previous post, you go into it with no expectation or idea of what may happen.
So here is my list of favorite comics I found on my own. Obviously things like Watchmen and Batman: Year One won't be on the list.

Inhumans - I can't believe this isn't more popular. I'm talking about the Marvel Knights 12 issues series. Great writing, amazing art. It humanized the Inhumans, created a new group of characters, and new dimensions for existing characters. One of my all-time favorites, pick it up if you got the chance.

Nightcrawler - 2002 Icons miniseries - A pretty simple, non-superhero story about the international slave trade. Pretty wild. Also lots of great stuff about Nightcrawler being a Roman Catholic Priest. Good stuff.

Daredevil #268 -
Just look at the cover. Man, Daredevil should be in a wife beater holding a bottle of Jim Beam. And the story was pretty great too, a simple stand alone story about a child murderer. Grimey, tells a lot about the character and where he is at the time.

Fantastic Four #276,277 - Part of the great John Byrne run I mentioned in the previous post. This short two issue story arc is often overlooked. It's about witches and hell, and 277 has this great double, simultaneous story with Reed and Sue trying to free Franklin from Hell and Johnny and Ben meeting after Johnny and Alicia got together. It is great stuff for FF fans, Great stuff!

Fantastic Four: Unthinkable - issues 67-70 of the third series, right where it resumes the old numbering, if that makes sense. Great Dr. Doom story. Shedding new light on a 40 -year old character and the FF as a family.

JLA #43-46 - "The Tower of Babel" I am not a huge JLA or even DC reader. I picked this up because it was a Ra's Al Ghul story, but it ended up being a great, genius Batman story. Check it out.

Nightwing #30 - I wouldn't say this is a classic, as some of the others are, but it is interesting juxtaposition of Nightwing next to Superman, first because of the obvious Superman/human difference, and second due to the Nightwing/Batman, Superman/Batman dynamic. Good subtle stuff.


There you go, a short list of comics I found on my own, kind of ironic that I am telling you stuff I found on my own and suggesting it to read, so you then can't really discover it and are checking it out because someone told you to.
Anyway, add your own comics/books/movies/athletes you discovered on your own.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Things I want to experience again for the first time

I had a friend in Montana who said multiple times that if he had a time machine he would go back in time and watch Back to the Future again without knowing what happens. That is a strong call-out. Then a while later I happened on this article from the AV Club of the Onion pretty much asking what would you like to be able to see or hear again for the first time. That is a pretty simple, but complicated question and really got me thinking. Here are things I wish I could experience again for the first time without any knowledge of them. I took the route of how could I make these things better, rather than what were my best experiences. Make sense?
Here we go.
Packers' Super Bowl run - It's not that I didn't appreciate this, it's just that I was only in 7th grade and probably would have enjoyed it more being a bit older.
The Wonder Years - I was just a bit to young for this. I watched it, but wasn't really mature enough to get everything or identify totally with Kevin.
Jaws - lots of these movies will be classic ones from my youth that I watched over and over again, still great every time I watch them, but I can't even imagine what the first time would've been like, not knowing how things were gonna play out
Ghostbusters - Ditto
Star Wars - again, watched it so many times, don't really know what the first time would be like
Planet of the Apes - "The movie or the planet?" Epic.
Badgers Rose Bowls and Final Four Run - this is more of the case of "I wish I was in college when..." I can't image how awesome it would be.
Fantastic Four (pretty much the entire John Byrne run) -
I can't imagine what it would be like reading these issues once a month as they came out. By the time I got to them they were already part of FF legend. Plus, getting them later it was harder to get the better issues, so I had to read them out of order. Specifically issues 242-244, 236, 285, and 267. I already knew the major shocks by the time I read them.
Seinfeld- I was just too young to get much of the sexual and relationship humor, but that made seeing reruns much more enjoyable. Kind of similar to the Simpsons, but as I said before, the best episodes were great when I first saw them, when I saw them in syndication, and when I saw them on the DVDs.
Cider House Rules and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? - I would've liked to read these books without seeing the movie first, a couple of many more like that
Harry Potter - I read the first one in high school but then didn't pick them back up until summer of 07 after seeing the 4th movie.
And I had already seen the 2nd movie, so I skipped that book. And by the time I was really getting into the meat of the series, that last book was already out, Dumbledore was out of the closet, and a few other things were already known. But I am happy to say that I was never one of the people camping out overnight and dressing up as a wizard or something.

And here is a list of things I would like to experience again for the first time, but not change anything about it.
Lost - I have had the pleasure of watching LOST both on DVD and waiting week to week. Both are good, but I think the anticipation might make it better.
Survivor- Ok, I'm thinking back to season 1 and 2 and some other good ones in the middle. Again, watching week to week is great, knowing you were part of something special




The Office - I never got into the Office until Season 3 when it was at its best. I was still learning about the characters in their funniest, best moments. Plus I can see occasional old episodes which are new to me.
Jurassic Park - I was probably 10 when this came out, pretty much the perfect age. Loved it and still love it

Independence Day - Vastly underrated, saw it when I was 12 I think, perfect.
Breaking Away - Yes.


There is my list of thing I would like to experience again for the first time. Adding your own thoughts/things you want to experience again is greatly encouraged.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Sporcle - Best Work Distraction

This spring I chanced upon a great trivia/list website - www.sporcle.com
It is pretty much the best trivia/random knowledge website I have come across. Basically, you have a question or topic like Tom Cruise Movie or Wimbledon Champions or Countries in Asia and you have a set amount of time (longer for the larger categories) to fill in the list. When I first checked it out, I literally spent 3 hours a day on it. There is a huge variety of categories and quizzes - movies, geography, music, sports, history, literature, TV and so on. Definitely check it out. It is a great distraction at work and makes those slow days fly by.

Here are some of my favorites
Geography - Landlocked Countries, One Neighbor Countries - got 'em all on this one, XYZ countries - harder than you think
History - Historical City Populations, Historical US City Populations, Time Person of the Year - all pretty hard
Literature - Harry Potter Surnames - I missed only 3 on that one, Shakespeare Plays - only missed 7 on that one, pretty dang good i think
Movies - Actors Highest Grossing 1 and 2 - some interesting stuff, Box Office Top 80's and 90's, Disney Animated Movies - there's a lot!, James Bond Movies, Top Movie Franchises, High School Movies
Sports - #1 Ranked Tennis Players - great one, one of the first ones I did, 2008 Olympic Sports, Home Run Leaders A-Z, Most NCAA Final Fours, 1st Round Quarterbacks, Premiership All-Time - this is actually the one that led me to Sporcle, some emailed it to me. I missed 4.
TV - Survivor Locations, Top Rated TV - a fun one.


There is a small sample. It has something for everyone and is super addictive. No matter how much you know, you usually forget something and get frustrated and also have those "aww yeah" moments when you remember something at the last minute.
Fun Stuff, don't get too addicted.