Oh boy, do I have mixed feelings about these final moments of David Tennant’s tenure as Doctor Who. On one hand, I simply can’t wait to see the Christmas specials, I expect nothing less than an utterly spectacular, mind-bending final adventure. They’ll be the highlight of my television viewing year (along with Russell T. Davies’ genius Torchwood miniseries Children of Earth, natch, which I reviewed here) but once they’re over, David’s gone for good and this will be the end of an era. His iconic portrayal of the Doctor is as decade-defining for this one as Sean Connery’s Bond was for the ‘60s. Doctor Who will be unthinkable without him (and Russell).
I may have to lie in bed for a week to get over it!
Poor Britney Spears just can’t catch a break! Earlier this week, the beleaguered pop strumpet, still smarting from the walkouts and poor reviews she encountered during her recent Australian shows, had her Twitter account hacked and defaced with an “Illuminati” wallpaper background. In addition, the hackers also made two tweets, one reading ?
Just in time for the upcoming Runaways biopic—directed by Floria Sigismondi and starring Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning—the Mattel toy company is unveiling its “Ladies of the ‘80s” collection’s Joan Jett Barbie. The collection also features Debbie Harry and Cyndi Lauper dolls, available in December.
Although I wholeheartedly approve of this, the first thing that came to mind was: What, no Annie Lennox or Siouxsie Sioux dolls? No Pat Benatar? No Lydia Lunch? Give ‘em time; the nostalgia machine will eventually crank ‘em all out.
(Note: There is also a Barbra Streisand Pink Label Barbie, but it’s ‘60s Barbara, not “Yentl”-era Babs.)
Below, Joan Jett and the Runaways perform Cherry Bomb in Tokyo in 1977:
Comics Alliance shares this combination of two of the greatest things ever. It’s like my personality ideals as a 7-year-old and a 27-year-old were combined into one big stew of awesome:
If you missed the “Mad Men” finale last night, my lips are sealed, but daaaaamn am I excited for the next season. As the interminable wait begins for Season 4, we’ve got a little something to tide you over: An X-Men Meets “Mad Men” mashup. Tell me these aren’t perfect (except for the spelling of Jean Grey’s name)! The notion of a smoldering brood-off between Jon Hamm and Hugh Jackman is truly a wonderful thing to imagine.
I recently watched the pilot episode of the new V series just cause, you know, you gotta keep up on your mass brainwashing. It was stupendously bad. However, I did have to laugh that the reptilian alien visitors in the show come bearing promises of “change” and then offer humanity… wait for it… wait for it… UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE. Sweet holy f*K, is that what it’s going to take to get the U.S. up to the baseline quality of life standard of the rest of the “first” world? Space lizards? Well, if so, I for one welcome our new overlords. (Wink wink)
1. The aliens come to Earth using Obama-campaign watchwords hope and change, and offer the most literal form of universal health care. Aided by a complicit news media, they assuage rabid protesters through a sweet-talking figurehead. Skeptics try to warn everyone of the impending danger, but nobody listens.
2. Of course, the most striking comparison is that, while many Obama opponents are sure he’s concealing an alien birth certificate, the seemingly benevolent V’s are pretending to be just like us, but (spoiler alert) are hiding lizardy evidence that they just aren’t.
3. The whole thing could have been lifted from the minds of Glenn Beck and Lou Dobbs.
Alan Moore‘s bi-monthly ‘zine, Dodgem Logic, launches this month and you can read a typically engrossing interview with Moore (yes, Watchmen and Vendetta, but Tom Strong, too!) here. Hoping to “resurrect a spirit of the ‘60s underground papers,” Dodgem Logic is just one of the new projects on Moore’s always-crowded plate (see also this).
Living up to his ‘zine’s tagline, “colliding ideas to see what happens,” Moore’s also composing the libretto for the currently untitled opera masterminded by the Gorillaz’ Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewitt. Those two, incidentally, “curate” a few pages in Dodgem Logic #2. Moore’s ‘zine will soon be available for sale in the US via Top Shelf comix. Some animation from the prior Albarn-Hewitt opera, Monkey: Journey To The West, follows below:
From the Everything Old is New Again Department: All this talk of the fall of the Berlin Wall is making many in the Eastern Bloc nostalgic for bygone days and simpler tastes. Although the idea of Soviet chocolate does sound kinda exotic, I’d imagine that it would be kind of bitter?
Once the butt of jokes the world over, Communist-era East European goods from sweets, to rustic washing machines and clunky cars are all the rage again.
As the world prepares to mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, souvenirs such as portraits of Romanian leader Nicolae Ceausescu are now avidly sought at markets. In Belgrade, cafes are named after Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito or even the Soviet KGB secret police.
Two decades on, many who then welcomed change now want to turn the clock back by eating Szerencsi chocolate, driving Trabant two-stroke cars or using Frania washing machines to wash carrots.
Nothing is too tacky, the quality never too questionable. For older people there is the nostalgia of the bad old days. Among younger people there is a curiosity to find out how their parents lived.
Many food brands have made a comeback on supermarket shelves using the same packaging that made them look so old fashioned and unwanted between 1945 and 1990.
Charlie Brooker’s Screen Burn columns in The Guardian are always funny, but this week’s is especially hilarious. Brooker writes on a new British telemovie that imagines the trial and death of Britain’s most notorious pedophile, former popstar Gary Glitter, whose 1972 hit “Rock and Roll Pt 2” is still to this day played by the unwitting at sports events big and small across America:
Don’t know about you, but sometimes I can’t sleep at night for wondering what it might be like if Gary Glitter were executed. I just can’t picture it in quite enough detail for my liking. Would they fry him? Gas him? Or pull his screaming head off with some candy-coloured rope? I can never decide, and it often leaves me restless till sunrise. Thank God, then, for The Execution Of Gary Glitter (Mon, 9pm, Channel 4), which vividly envisions the trial and subsequent capital punishment of pop’s most reviled sex offender so you don’t have to.
I can’t believe what I’m typing: this is a drama-documentary that imagines a world in which Britain has a) Reinstated the death penalty for murder and paedophilia, b) Changed the law so Britons can stand trial in this country for crimes committed abroad, and c) Chosen Gary Glitter as its first test case. It blends archive footage, talking-head interviews with Miranda Sawyer, Garry Bushell and Ann Widdecombe, and dramatised scenes in which Gary Glitter is led into an execution chamber and hanged by the neck until dead.
He’s not just swinging from a rope, mind. The Glitterphile is all over this show, like Hitler in Downfall. There are lengthy scenes in which he argues with his lawyer, smirks in court, plays chess with the prison chaplain, weeps on the floor of his cell, etc. Visually, we’re talking late-period Glitter, with the evil wizard shaved-head-and-elongated-white-goatee combo that makes him resemble a sick alternative Santa. It would be funnier if they showed him decked out in full 70s glam gear throughout, being led to the gallows in a big spangly costume with shoulder pads so huge they get stuck in the hole as he plunges through. I assumed the Glittercution would feature dry ice, disco lights, and a hundred party poppers going off as his neck cracked. But here there’s not so much as a can of Silly String. This is a terribly serious programme.
For a mere $30 entrance fee, L.A.‘s “cougars”—and the younger men who love them—can learn all there is to know about the intricacies of older woman/younger man dating and mating rituals Friday at the California Cougar Convention. Like: Who pays for dinner? Inquiring minds (and aspiring gigolos) want to know.
The event will feature a keynote speech by “cougar expert” Lucia (see video clip below), the crowning of Miss Cougar California (selected by the “cubs” attending) and what is being described as a “giant feline dance party.” Prior to the main event, there will be a women-only “Cougar School” for aspiring Mrs. Robinsons that begins at 6:30 p.m.
(Speaking as a guy, when I watched this clip, all of the men in it have that “this is like shooting fish in a barrel” look in their eyes. I suppose that’s the point, isn’t it?)
The California Cougar Convention, Nov. 6, 7 p.m., Crowne Plaza, 1150 S. Beverly Drive. www.cougarevents.com
(PS: Does anyone living in LA want to cover this story for DM?)