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Peter Lorre promotes ‘Smell-O-Vision’ on ‘What’s My Line?’

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Peter Lorre almost succeeded in disguising himself when he appeared on panel show What’s My Line? in 1960. As his voice was always instantly recognizable, Lorre answered his inquisitors’ questions by a simple “hm-hm” or “uh-huh” sounds. However, one question about a new movie proved his undoing and Lorre was unmasked as “a sad-eyed, innocent villain.”

Lorre was promoting his latest movie Scent of Mystery, which starred Denholm Elliott, Beverly Bentley, Diana Dors and Paul Lukas. The film was the first “Smell-O-Vision” feature (“First they moved (1895)! Then they talked (1927)! Now they smell!”) that offered audiences the thrill of scratching ‘n’ sniffing various aromas off the back of a card at key moments during the movie’s screening.
 
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Some of the smells available for sniffing were roses, apples, wood shavings, lemon, tobacco, perfume and garlic. Apparently there was no stench of fart or glue—that would come later with John Waters’ “Odorama” feature Polyester in 1981.
 
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‘Scent of Mystery’ soundtrack CD booklet with Smell-O-Vision scratch card.
 
Lorre seemed quite pleased with the finished result, saying he did not normally promote movies but this was something rather special. Scent of Mystery was written by cult writer Gerald Kersh, who rarely wrote anything dull. The film was eventually re-released without “Smell-O-Vision” as the mundanely titled Holiday in Spain, which some reviewers thought only made the movie rather surreal:

... the film acquired a baffling, almost surreal quality, since there was no reason why, for example, a loaf of bread should be lifted from the oven and thrust into the camera for what seemed to be an unconscionably long time…

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Fun with electricity (or why you should never play with a taser)

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A young man from New York learned a painful lesson in electrical conductivity when he “tazzed” himself with a stun gun. The certainly intrepid, but perhaps not too bright D’angelo Conner was showing off the effects of a taser on a can of Coke, when he decided to repeat his experiment while holding a metal bracelet… and you know what is going to happen next.

Stunning! (and what’s with the couple in the background, anyway?!?)
 

 
H/T Metro.

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
A Stan Lee action figure because YES!
04.06.2015
03:28 pm

Topics:
Amusing

Tags:
Stan Lee
Marvel Comics
action figures


 
This 1/6 scale action figure of Stan Lee is a pretty damned good depiction of him if you ask me. It’s a limited-edition and they’re only 1000 of ‘em being made by Das Toyz. So if you must own one, Mr. Lee is $249.99 a pop at Big Bad Toy Store. They’re taking pre-orders now.

The Stan Lee action figure comes with:

Outfit

- Sports jacket
- Black long sleeve sweater
- White dress shirt
- Gray pants
- White shirt
- Belt w/ buckle
- Pair of socks
- Pair of shoes

Accessories

- 2 x interchangeable heads
- 4 x posing hands
- 2 x eye glasses
- 1 x wrist watch
- 2 X rings
- Handkerchief

Excelsior!


 

 

 
via Nerd Approved and Laughing Squid

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
‘Game of Chairs’: ‘Sesame Street’ takes on ‘Game of Thrones’

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With a week to go before Game of Thrones returns to our screens, Sesame Street have produced a parody of the hit TV series—where the bloody feuds and wars are settled not by sword, sorcery, or dragon but by playing a game of musical chairs…

It’s certainly fun—with Muppet versions of Cersei Lannister, Daenerys Targaryen, Robb Stark and Joffrey Baratheon all battling it out, as a typically lustrous-locked Tyrion Lannister and (the unfortunately named) Grover Bluejoy look on.
 
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While Sesame Street have brought some knowing humor to proceedings, there is an interesting article by Paul Mason over at the Guardian which asks “Can Marxist theory predict the end of Game of Thrones?”:

If you apply historical materialism to Westeros, the plot of season five and six becomes possible to predict. What happened with feudalism, when kings found themselves in hock to bankers, is that – at first – they tried to sort it out with naked power. The real-life Edward III had his Italian bankers locked up in the Tower of London until they waived his debts.

But eventually the power of commerce began to squash the power of kings. Feudalism gave way to a capitalism based on merchants, bankers, colonial plunder and the slave trade. Paper money emerged, as did a complex banking system for assuaging problems like your gold mine running dry….

There is a reason so much fantasy fiction adopts the conceit of a feudalism that is always in crisis but never overthrown. It forms the ideal landscape in which to dramatise the secret desires of people who live under modern capitalism…

Future social historians, as they look back on the popularity of Game of Thrones, will not have much trouble deciphering the inner desires of the generation addicted to it. They are: “all of the above” plus multipartner sex.

Trapped in a system based on economic rationality, we all want the power to be something bigger than our credit card limit, or our job function. Nobody sits at home watching the these dramas imagining they are a mere slave, peasant or serving girl: we are invited to fantasise that we are one of the characters with agency – Daenerys Targaryen, a beautiful woman with tame dragons, or the unkillable stubbly hunk that is Jon Snow.

You can read the full article here.
 

 
Via WSJ
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Is that the Hadron Collider in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?
04.06.2015
08:29 am

Topics:
Amusing
Media
Science/Tech

Tags:
Hadron Collider
BBC News
typos

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Now, this little cock-up is why we should always check our spelling…

It would appear someone at the BBC was a tad over-excited by the news the Hadron Collider was back online after a two-year refit.

It’s not the first time the Hadron has been called a “Hardon”—two years ago the Daily Telegraph reported “Large Hardon Collider breaks energy record.”

The mind boggles…
 

 
Via the Independent

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
I Hate Lucy: Lucille Ball statue horrifies small town
04.03.2015
12:10 pm

Topics:
Amusing
Art

Tags:
Lucille Ball


 
Locals who live in Celoron, N.Y.—Lucille Ball’s hometown, btw—are mad as shit at a life-size Lucille Ball statue erected there in her honor. The bronze statue sits sadly at the Lucille Ball Memorial Park in Celoron.

Lucy fans think it’s a disgrace to the legendary actress, comedian, model, and TV studio executive. Residents want the statue to either be remade, recast or removed entirely. Looking at it, I can’t say I blame them.

There’s a Facebook page called We Love Lucy! Get Rid of this Statue. The man who started the page wants to remain anonymous but told Yahoo, “I think it looks like a monster. That is just my opinion,” he said. “When you see it at night, it is frightening.”

I’d probably crap my pants if I saw this thing at night.

Celoron Mayor Scott Schrecengost told the Jamestown Post-Journal that it would cost a lot of money — between $8,000 and $10,000 — to have the original artist recast the statue, which was unveiled in 2009.

Schrecengost told the newspaper that he has no interest in using taxpayer dollars to fix it. Instead, a fund has been set up to raise the money, according to the daily newspaper.

The artist, Dave Poulin, has remained silent on the issue. I believe Mr. Poulin has got some ‘splainin’ to do.

Update: The We Love Lucy! Get Rid of this Statue page on Facebook writes:

I would urge anyone who would like to donate money for another statue to NOT donate to the City of Celoron so the same artist can “repair” this. Please wait until another Kickerstarter or GoFundMe account is set up where we can get a NEW artist and a NEW statue. Again… Please do NOT donate money to the City of Celoron to fix this.


 

 
Images via We Love Lucy! Get Rid of this Statue

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
‘In my headphones it sounds like the f*cking Smurfs’: Mark E. Smith vs. Kevin the Sound Engineer
04.03.2015
09:26 am

Topics:
Amusing
Music
Punk

Tags:
The Fall
Mark E Smith


 
Honestly, would you expect anything less from Mark E. Smith after watching this hilarious short video? I mean, really? That’s how the magic is made, right?

If you turned this video into a drinking game and took a shot of whiskey every time Mr. Smith said “fucking”... you’d be on the floor, smashed to the gills, in 1 minute and 38 seconds.

Kevin and his assistant just go with the flow. When you sign on to work with Mark E. Smith, I think this is pretty much exactly what you expect it’s gonna be like. I’m sure if Smith turned out to be a nice guy it would be… disappointing.

 
via WFMU on Twitter

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Jimmy Cagney’s poetry: From bad to verse

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When I was a child, summer holidays meant Jimmy Cagney movies on TV: White Heat, The Public Enemy, G-Men, Each Dawn I Die, Angels With Dirty Faces and so on. Cagney never looked like he was acting, he became whatever character he played, which explains why he was once asked, “Well, did you turn yella that time you went to da electric chair?”

Orson Welles once told chat show host Michael Parkinson that he thought Cagney was “maybe the greatest actor who ever appeared in front of a camera.” I tend to agree with this—as no doubt did Marlon Brando and Stanley Kubrick who were both major fans of the brilliant, diminutive Irish-American.

Like many of the characters he played, Cagney was tough. He was born into a poor working class family in New York’s Lower East Side in 1899. He worked hard, held down several jobs, and was always ready with his fists should the need arise. His fighting skills were such that family, friends and neighbors came to Jimmy to knock out any troublemaker. But Cagney was also disciplined and assiduous. He was a vaudevillian, a song and dance man first and foremost, who learnt his trade working up through chorus lines and repertory companies before being spotted by Al Jolson in a play with Joan Blondell and cast in a movie Sinners’ Holiday. Cagney went to Hollywood for three weeks’ work, but ended with a legendary career that lasted over 31 years.
 
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I’ve been reading his autobiography Cagney By Cagney (which I recommend) and in amongst his tales of career, family, early left wing politics—he was considered a communist because of his support of the unions, and was the target of a planned Mafia hit until actor and friend George Raft put a stop to it, though he switched allegiances to Reagan in the 1980s—his deep love of the country and concern for the environment and his fine talent for anecdote, Cagney revealed his liking for writing poetry. To be fair, some of it is okay—funny, amusing, enjoyable—but then there are those poems—like the one on the passing of friend Clark Gable—that maybe should have stayed in the bottom drawer:

The King, long bled, is newly dead.
Uneasily wore his crown, ‘tis said;
Quite naturally, since it was made of lead;
On those who gathered about his throne,
Y-clept Mayer, Mannix, Katz, and Cohn
He spat contempt in generous doses,
But whatever he gave, they made their own.

Unhappy man, he chose seclusion,
To the unremitting crass intrusion
Of John and Jane whose names meant dough
To Louie, Eddie, Sam, and Joe.

This is a small slap to the Hollywood producers “who controlled his destinies.” Cagney hated the exploitative nature of the Hollywood system.
 
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Cagney began writing in his Broadway days in the 1920s—“a habit triggered by reading Stephen Vincent Benet’s magnificent John Brown’s Body.” He was also influenced by William Blake and Robert Burns, who gave “food for thought” for when he tired of Hollywood and Hugh Kingsmill’s Anthology of Invective and Abuse, which inspired his putdown of a Tinsel Town ass-kisser:

Where once were vertebrae is now a tangle,
From constant kissing at an awkward angle.

Throughout his autobiography, Cagney dipped into one of poems whenever he felt like it. Though he claimed few of his verses were ever written down, he had “quite a number stored in [his] memory.” These ranged from:

A pheasant called in a distant thicket,
And lovingly my old friend said,
“I hear you, I hear you.”
And he loved that bird, till he gunned him dead.

To:

A lady spider met a fella
And made all haste to date him;
She loved him with a love sublime,
Up to and including—
The time, when in ecstasy,
She ate him.

Of course Cagney was just enjoying himself—relishing the pleasure of words. But his poetry often dealt with serious issues, like the poem he sent to the Irish Times under the pseudonym Harley Quinn on the damage industry was doing to the environment:

You want to see the Shannon like the Hudson
Or the Liffey just as filthy as the Seine?
Bring in the arrogant asses
And their garbage and their gasses—
The pollutants plunging poison down each drain:
Killing everything that’s living
For which nature’s unforgiving,
And the punishment will certainly fit the crime.
Where man, the creeping cancer,
Will have to make the final answer
As he smothers ‘neath his self-created slime.

 
More on Jimmy Cagney and his poetry, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Poetry Slam: Angie Bowie and Mick Karn on ‘The Old Grey Whistle Test,’ 1982


 
This is kind of nuts: in March of 1982, Angela Bowie, the former Mrs. David, appeared on The Old Grey Whistle Test, reciting poetry, while Mick Karn (RIP 2011), the brilliant bass player from the glam/New Romantic band Japan, vamped on bass. Karn was predictably amazing, but Bowie’s poetry was savaged in the UK press. Getting a drubbing from the notoriously drub-happy British media doesn’t necessarily mean something was actually bad, and I’ve attended readings of far worse poetry than Angie Bowie’s. However, it must be conceded that it seems doubtful she would have been invited onto that program to recite poetry in the first place had she been just anyone not called “Bowie.”
 

 
Though they’d not performed together before this appearance, Karn and Bowie were no strangers—coincidentally, both originally hailed from Cyprus, but they met in the late ‘70s. Karn related the story of how they met, and how their odd TV pairing came about, in a 1984 interview conducted around the release of Karn’s collaborative album with Bauhaus’ Peter Murphy, under the name Dali’s Car:

B: You did the “Whistle Test” with Angie Bowie. How did that come about? It was so funny, we just couldn’t stop laughing! The expressions on your face were just brilliant!

M: Oh! I’d love to see that again! That was weird – Angie and I have known each other for years.

B: How did you first meet – where and when?

M: Must’ve been 1978, just round a friend’s house, we used to keep strange company in those days. The friend happened to be a friend of Angie’s and she stayed about 2 weeks, we were staying there as well. An opportunity not to stay at home with your parents, we’d always jump to in those days. So we met her there. Then she went away for 3-4 years and when she came back we met up again. We’d been on the “Whistle Test” the week before as Japan, I think, and Angie was in the audience watching. After we’d finished we spoke to Mike Appleton, the producer, and he jokingly said, “You know it’d be great to get both of you on the show next week to do something together” and we thought, “That’s a stupid idea! There’s nothing we can do together, she doesn’t play an instrument and I can’t sing!” So we came up with this idea of playing along to her poetry, which he seemed to like. The expressions are probably because we didn’t have time to rehearse beforehand – I had some bass lines in mind – she had some poetry in mind and it was our first time to do it together – live on the show, which was very nerve-racking. So I think the expressions were looking at one another trying to know when one of us was going to finish…’cos she’d finish the poem and I didn’t know that it was over, so I carried on playing! (Everyone laughs)

 

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
Sexy Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister cosplay
04.02.2015
01:14 pm

Topics:
Amusing
Art
Television

Tags:
Game of Thrones
Cosplay


 
Here’s some confusing cosplay: a woman dressed-up as a sexified version of Tyrion Lannister from Game of Thrones. When you think you’ve seen everything the Internet has to offer, something like this pops up and you’re left speechless. And then you think to yourself, “Nothing is going to top this one.” But something inevitably does… the very next day. Very Aphex Twin, ain’t it?

I demand to see more sexy versions of Tyrion Lannister this Halloween, please and thank you in advance.


 

 

 
via Geekologie

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
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