Sunday, January 31, 2010

"Lost" In Thought...

My dear friends and TV lovers of all nations, we are now less than 48 hours away from the season premiere of the 6th and (gasp) final season of one of (in my humble opinion) the greatest TV shows in the history of the medium. I'm talking about, that's right, "Lost."
I remember first hearing about this show back in early 2004. I thought it was a very clever idea--something not seen on television before, and I was immediately hooked. I couldn't wait for the premiere, and when I saw it, I knew I was in for a real treat.
The show has sparked numerous discussions among friends and complete strangers, both in person, and through internet forums. I've been a contributor to one of my favorite forums, and you can read it on's Popcandy blog (look for it in the Life section).
Anyway, the show has everything you would want: a fantastic plot, great characters, and terrific writing. Like millions of others (no pun intended), I can't wait to find out what happens next.
Maureen Ryan over at The Chicago Tribune had a great 3 part interview with show creators and writers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse. Click here to read the entire article(s). Here's an excerpt:

Ryan: So many people love different things about "Lost" that I'm prepared to say, "OK, you guys like that stuff, that's cool. I'll get a turn with the stuff I like soon." 

Lindelof: We just hope you like Season 6. I think what’s cool about the show is that if you say to somebody who’s watched all five years, "What was your favorite season of the show?" -- there probably aren’t that many people out there saying Season 3 was their favorite, but they’ll say Season 3 was their favorite finale. You’ll get different answers. It's all over the place. And some people love Season 4 because of all the freighter stuff, some people love Season 5 because of the time-travel stuff. The purists just love Season 1 and nothing’s ever come up to [that standard], you know. That’s the way I was [i.e., debating which season was best] as a “Buffy” fan.

Cuse: Most people seem to like [Seasons] 1 or 5. Those are the two that people seemed to like the most. 

Click the link below to catch the season 5 finale which leads up to Tuesday night's season 6 premiere (which, by the way, you can catch starting with a special hourlong recap episode at 7p.m.)


The New Girl (and her inner thoughts)

I'm going to treat this "get to know me" article like speed dating. (People do that right?) I think that will leave enough mystery to keep everyone coming back for more, yet give enough information for everyone to know what I am all about.

I'm the type of person who talks to themselves. So, for your reading pleasure I thought I would include many of the thoughts that pop into my head as I write this.

When Grant and Jody mentioned for me to starting writing on their blog, my first thought was,"I have a hard enough time keeping thoughts together, and they want me to write well organized, witty articles?!" Thanks to my degree in Communications from The University of Tennessee at Martin, I have been well trained enough to sound like I know what I am talking about (go Skyhawks!)

I truly enjoy what pop culture has to offer us! I have been a long time video game, movie, and music lover. I do not know where I get most of my information from (maybe from the depths of the interwebs), but now at 24, I find myself a plethora (one of my favorite words) of knowledge in all things pop culture that I am looking forward to sharing with you! I cannot being to convey my excitement and enthusiasm about writing for this blog. I hope you all enjoy reading what I have to say as much as I enjoy writing it.

Grant is going to be conducting a formal interview in a next days, so keep an eye (or two) out for that soon.

I also wanted to introduce a new series coming to Pop-Snap. This was inspired by a very good friend (thinking of clever aliases). Let's call her Beatrix. Well, as I was explaining to Beatrix what this blog was all about, I learned that she hasn't seen many of the movies that most people consider classics (many of these movies being the top grossing of their release year). So, over the next few weeks, Beatrix will be watching all of these movies and I'll be asking her questions about what took her so long to watch these movies;

1.) Back to The Future Series
2.) Indian Jones Series (Should I include The Crystal Skull?)
3.) The Princess Bride
4.) Top Gun
5.) Anchorman
6.) The Terminator Series
7.) Kill Bill 1+2 (two of my favorites)

Now, there is one series of movies she refuses to watch; Star Wars. I will hopefully convince her to watch them, but until then, I think we will keep her busy.

What do I get out of this (besides quasi-publicly embarrassing her)? Well, I am a chicken. While I feel that overall the horror genre is the weakest that it has been in years, I still don't like the basic startles that they offer. I agreed if she watched these movies and let me pick her brain that I would watch all of the Saw movies with her (mostly so she can laugh at me while I watch it with the blanket pulled up to my eyes.)

So stayed tuned folks! I hope to bring much to the popcorn box (but without the buttery fingers)!

Friday, January 29, 2010

James Cameron Sinks His Own Ship

"Avatar" can’t be stopped. While the doe-eyed rainforest warriors have yet to overtake the Caped Crusader in “The Dark Knight,” (in domestic sales) the oversea box office has surpassed James Cameron’s other indie flick, Titanic. Raking in $1.859 billion in the process, "Avatar" offers more than just a pretty face and $13 ticket price.

Leaving the visuals out of the equation in a sea of remakes and wish-they-had-never-been-mades, the original idea of the Na'vi people created by Cameron is refreshing. I can’t agree with the people who say this movie is an old idea with new visuals; The film stands for more than that, and money speaks louder than words. Word–of-mouth from this film should happily keep people in their 3D glasses.

Much has changed since the movie “Titanic” debuted in 1997. Theatre-goers can experience "Avatar" in multiple formats including 2D, 3D, and IMAX.

I saw this movie in 3D, and the anticipation of what would be flying out of the screen was worth the extra dough!! I suggest seeing "Avatar" in 3D while you can. I don’t know about you, but I won’t be buying a 3D TV anytime soon. If you can appreciate the movie for what it is, an action blockbuster filled with creative creature and lush landscapes, you will enjoy the experience. In the end, isn’t that what movies are all about anyway?

Cameron’s "Avatar" set the standard for blockbusters from now on. This is the season where the Oscar indie-flicks reign supreme, and the winter months don’t usually see movies with huge budgets; "Avatar" maintained a rumored $300-500 million budget. I have a feeling “It’s no Avatar” will be a widely used phrase to characterize a movie that just doesn’t impress the way "Avatar" has for present audiences and critics. Until we can start tasting movies, I think "Avatar" has laid the map outlining the directions all new movies will ultimately have to follow. It looks like James Cameron has sunk the Titanic yet again, but either way, he wins.

Welcome, Katie Mercuri!

PopSnap! is expanding and very excited to welcome a new member to the team! Jody and I have the distinct privilege of welcoming Katie Mercuri to the popcorn box. I've known Katie for some time and I must say she is an asset to any organization. She has background in Communications, Web Design, Theatre, and Photography. Her roots run deep in the world of pop culture and she will help provide us with the latest news and gossip.

Katie will join us frequently on our pop culture podcast on Blog Talk Radio. I know that she will do an outstanding job of keeping everyone informed. I just wanted to take this time to welcome our new member and say how excited and honored we are to have her join the crew. Expect to hear a lot more from Katie in the weeks ahead!

Count Me In!

Welcome back, Mel Gibson. Box offices around the country are opening up today with "Edge of Darkness," Mel Gibson's first movie in years. He's one of the greastest leading men of our generation. His movies range from "Mad Max" to going 'mad' over women in "What Women Want" (Yes, I did just mention that movie). His performances in "Braveheart" and "The Patriot" are two of my all-time favorites. "Darkness" is his first leading role since 2002's "Signs," directed by M. Night Shyamalan.

The film tells the story of a man's quest for justice after his daughter is murdered. From the first time that I saw the preview, I've been so excited about Mel Gibson's revenge quest. This is definitely a film that I will be taking my Dad to see in theatres. "Taken" was a huge success this time last year and we could see of the same good numbers for "Darkness."

If the Winter months get you down, put your trust in the silver screen! With "Edge of Darkness," "From Paris With Love," "The Wolfman," and "Shutter Island," we have a great FOUR weeks of film ahead! Popcorn is a MUST with these movies...Enjoy, Everyone!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

"Lost" Prepares For The Beginning Of The End...

Attention "Lost" lovers: The critically acclaimed ABC show is drawing to a close. It will have the premiere of its 6th and final season Tuesday night. I found this article on *Spoiler Alert* If you don't know want to know
which characters from past seasons will be making an appearance, do not read this article! For the rest, read and enjoy!
Click here to read the article.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Remembering Pernell Roberts

"Bonanza" made him a star, but for many people, like me, Pernell Roberts will always be known as the guy who played "Trapper John, M.D."
Roberts, who died Sunday at the age of 81 from complications due to cancer, first made his mark in Hollywood in 1959, playing the eldest son of the Cartwright clan on the popular TV series, "Bonanza." But he got restless playing Adam Cartwright. Frustrated with lack of character development, he left the show after just six seasons.
He toured the country performing in regional theatre, and took occasional TV work after that, appearing in many popular shows including "Hawaii Five-O," "Mission Impossible," "Ironside," "Mannix," and "Marcus Welby, M.D."
In 1979, he landed the title role in the series "Trapper John, M.D." If that name sounds familiar, it was the same character that Wayne Rogers played in "MASH," both of which aired on CBS.
"Trapper John" aired until 1986.
Like "Bonanza," "Trapper John" has great theme music. Check them both out below:

Kettle Corn

Kettle Corn is what's popping in the world of pop culture. It's like someone just popped a fresh batch of popcorn -- and the smell is too good to pass up!

Experts believe "Avatar" will surpass "Titanic" as the highest grossing film of all-time!

Head on over to hulu to check out the "A-Team" trailer.

One of the most anticipated games of the year, "Mass Effect 2" hits store shelves today.

Jay Leno will be appearing on "Oprah" Thursday.

Lady Antebellum's second album, "Need You Now" is out.

Go Conan.

I just wanted to give a quick shout out to Conan's finale on "The Tonight Show" Friday night. He did an outstanding job of wrapping up his tenure with NBC. It was sad to see him go, but I'm sure we will see him back in the next few months. I hate to see you go, Conan, but you ended on a great "Free Bird" note!

If you thought the fiasco was over, think again. Jay Leno is scheduled to be on Oprah this week. People are speculating that this is a move by NBC and Jay to help gain back some of the "good guy" image. I'm surprised that he is even allowed to talk about the late night drama. Who knows what he will be allowed to say or not say. Be sure to check your local listings if you want to hear from Jay later this week.

For a complete wrap on Conan's finale -- Check out Jody's article below.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Conan's "Tonight Show" Farewell

Watching Conan O'Brien's final "Tonight Show" was a bittersweet affair for me. There's no denying he got a raw deal from NBC with Jay Leno moving back in to take the host's chair. Much has been made of the dustup between Conan, Jay and the network, so I won't rehash the story that most everyone has already heard.
I'll admit I got a little misty eyed watching the show, but I thought Conan added a nice touch of class by thanking NBC after all his years of service there. He started out as a writer for "SNL," then hosted his "Late Night" show for 16 years before taking the "Tonight Show." Tom Hanks, Neil Young, Will Ferrell, and Steve Carell all made Conan's final show extra special.
I feel truly fortunate that I was able to meet Conan a few years ago in New York, and attend a taping of "Late Night With Conan O'Brien." (Ask me about how I chased him down in 30 Rock yelling "Conan! Conan!" True story) He couldn't have been nicer about personally getting me tickets to the show. Then last year, I had the privilege to attend his 3rd "Tonight Show" in Los Angeles and had a great time there as well. It's a shame it had to end this way, but Conan will bounce back and wherever he goes, I'll follow.
Go Team CoCo!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Way To Go, Conan!

Conan O'Brien has rejected NBC's offer to push back his show after Leno. He wants the network to resolve this issue soon. The man was given only 7 months to establish a "Tonight Show" audience and you expect him to just lay down now?? I'm a fan of both Leno and Conan, but I really feel like Conan is getting slapped in the face over this whole mess. Click here to read Conan's statement he released late this afternoon. The wheels of change are already in motion, and for NBC, this is going to end sour for 1 of the 3 late night hosts (Sorry, Carson Daly, I wasn't counting you...).

"Godspeed, Spider-Man"

Sony Pictures has announced that they have squashed "Spider-Man 4" and will now reboot the series with a new cast and director. This piece of shocking news has sent waves all across the pop culture spectrum. I'm terribly disappointed that we don't get a chance to see if Sam Raimi could erase "Spider-Man 3" from our minds and wrap up the series on a good note. Instead, Sony is taking Spidey back to his high school roots and is already working on two scripts with a 2011/2012 starting date.

Spider-Man is my favorite superhero of all time. Just ask my friends or come to my apartment and you will find plenty of Spidey memorabilia. We would NOT have comic book motion pictures as we know them today if it wasn't for "Spider-Man"'s success in 2002. To this day I don't think that I have never been more excited about a movie than I was back in 2002. The fact that Sony picked a director that was a passionate Spider-Man fan and cared about his product is what made the first two pictures a great success. There's no secret that the third film had problems. Sam Raimi admitted that and was looking forward to erasing it from our minds. I had hope for the guy, especially after he took a break and made the popular film, "Drag Me To Hell." Word is starting to leak out that Sony and Raimi have been debating over the script for number 4 for sometime now. Apparently, one of the main points was that Raimi wanted to stick with Vulture as the villian and Sony wanted someone/something else. Vulture is not my favorite villian, but the fact that John Malkovich was interested in the role was very exciting. As a Spidey fan, who wouldn't be excited to see Malkovich try to rip apart the Web-Crawler?? I think the studios were hoping for a darker picture and Vulture wasn't what they had in mind. With Vulture and the possibility of using Lizard, that sounds like a good movie to me. The most exciting scenario to me would have been using Kraven as the villian and implementing Lizard into the story since we've seen him in the first 3 movies. After working and reworking, Sony finally decided that it was best to move the franchise in another direction.

So, the "new" Spider-Man franchise already has part of a script, but no director, actors, or definite timetable. I wish I could say that the studio will realize that they are making a mistake, but they hardly ever do. For Sam Raimi and Tobey, I'm sure they are glad that they can move on with their careers. "Spider-Man" helped make comic book movies what they are today. Was Raimi really going to correct himself? What kind of picture would we have seen in "Spider-Man 4?" I guess we will never as the Green Goblin says in "Spider-Man," "Godspeed, Spider-Man."

Monday, January 11, 2010

LOST characters explain how to make a sandwich

This is hilarious! Be sure to read the comments after the article.

LOST characters explain how to make a sandwich

Posted using ShareThis

Sunday, January 10, 2010

NBC's Late Night Mess

I knew Jay Leno wasn't doing well in the ratings. That wasn't news. But then late last week came the revelation that the ratings had hurt NBC affiliates as the lead in to the 10pm news, and that NBC was taking action.
Now it's official--As of mid-February, "The Jay Leno Show" is toast. But wait, what's that? NBC still wants Jay on the air?
That's right. And what's more, although it's not set in stone quite yet, it looks like they'll be giving Jay 30 minutes Monday through Friday at 10:35pm, followed by Conan at 11:05pm, then Jimmy Fallon an hour later. Essentially, he's getting back "The Tonight Show" timeslot (at least the first half of it), and Conan and Jimmy Fallon are both getting the shaft.
What remains to be seen is whether or not the plan will work. What we do know is that NBC execs liked Leno in his old time slot. He consistently beat Letterman in the ratings, and it was working well. Conan did not fare as well against Letterman, who will probably extend his run on CBS beyond 2010.

It's conceivable that NBC could buy out the remainder of Conan's contract, then reinstall Leno at the helm of "Tonight." If that were to happen, Conan, now contract free, could hop to another network (FOX has already made overtures).

Personally, I just can't see Leno in a half hour program. Not to mention Conan *immediately* following Leno again--and poor Jimmy Fallon! NBC is said they're still working with all parties to keep them at the Peacock network, and have already ordered a bunch of new pilots to fill that hourlong spot that Leno will vacate in February.

By the way, if you're interested in the kind of drama this has created, I highly recommend the book "The Late Shift" by New York Times television writer Bill Carter. It chronicled exactly what happened when Johnny Carson left "The Tonight Show" in 1992, and how Jay Leno and David Letterman battled it out to see who would take the spot. An excellent read. Carter, by the way, continues to write for the "Times," and is now writing about this latest Leno situation.
So what will happen next for Leno, Conan, and Fallon?
Stay tuned.

Seinfeld Brings It For Another Paducah Audience

What a show! Jerry Seinfeld came back to Paducah's Carson Center last Friday night, but he wasn't alone. His opening act was comedian Tom Papa, a very well known comic in his own right.
I was glad Tom came along for the ride. He and Jerry compliment each other very well.
I thought Grant and I would have pretty good seats--what I didn't realize is that they turned out to be front row center! The microphone was literally right in front of us.
It was amazing.
What a treat to have Jerry Seinfeld come out and say "Paduc-Ahhh," "Paduc-Ahhh!" He went on to joke about everything from the close relationship between the words "sucks," and "great," to prescription drug commercials, modern technology, and even his own family.
He took a break every few minutes to grab a sip of water.
After his set, the audience gave him a well-deserved standing ovation, then he came back out and took questions.
What did he think of the Tiger Woods situation? Would he take the Tonight Show? And Why does he still tour? To which he simply replied, "Did you have a good time tonight?" (The audience responded with thunderous applause) Then Tom Papa came back out, the two shook hands, took another bow in unison, and left the stage headed to their next stop, Peoria, Illinois.
A great evening for sure, and a performance both Grant and I agreed we would remember for many years to come.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Jerry Seinfeld Revisits Paducah, Kentucky

In his first stop on his 2010 standup comedy tour, Jerry Seinfeld will return to Paducah's Carson Center this Friday night.
Seinfeld first came to Paducah a couple of years ago, where he performed two sold out shows. This time around, he's only got one show, and you can bet it's the hottest ticket in town.
But the famed comedian also has another connection to western Kentucky. About ten years ago, Seinfeld stayed overnight in Mayfield, Kentucky, stayed at the Super 8 Motel there, and even ate lunch at Hill's BBQ!
Both Grant and I have tickets to this Friday night's show, and we're looking forward to hearing some of his new material. Be sure to listen to our podcast on the right hand side of the page (under "Blogtalkradio") for a preview. I've seen Seinfeld perform before several years ago at TPAC in Nashville, again to a sold out crowd. It was a fantastic show, and I'm certain this Friday night's performance will be no exception.
Below, you can catch Jerry in an appearance on Johnny Carson's "Tonight Show" as he promotes his brand new upcoming series "The Seinfeld Chronicles," which a short time later, was shortened to just "Seinfeld." Enjoy!