Archive for December, 2014

2014 Flashies

Posted: December 29, 2014 in Midlife Crisis in Maryhole

Well everyone else does eh. Random thoughts in no particular order and obviously reflective of only what I have seen or experienced. Dont get your panties in a twist if Kardashian Kapers et al does not appear in any worst of life list – I dont watch it. Of course with early onset Alzheimers hovering there is probably stuff I loved I simply forgot about – 364 days is a long time, one day at a time.

Best TV of 2014

Fargo was the best new show for moi especially the way they based it on the movie but didnt. Billy Bob was perfect. Solid runs by the faithful like OITNB, HOC, Good Wife, MM and Americans. UK continues to deliver quality drama especially in the mini series ilk like Happy Valley and The Missing along with returning Line of Duty. Most pleasant surprise of the year was Black Mirror – always great when you discover a show late and suddenly there a few seasons to watch. There was one piece of TV though that have rewatched a few times over the year – The Keating Interviews with Kerry 0’Brien. Now, love him or loathe him he is a fascinating character and when you see some of the clowns we have today attempt to speak on some subjects it is great to roll this one out to hear someone who had a view on everything and could actually express himself succinctly and often with wit. As someone who does not watch much animated at all Rick and Morty was a surprising treat

Most Disappointing TV of 2014. As opposed to worst because I simply dont watch some crap. Bit of a Melbourne Cup field here but lets see if we can narrow it down.

SOA was generally a good season but a poor self-indulgent ending left a sour taste. Same with Homeland – a good season until one of the worst season finales in recorded history. The Fall Season 2 had all the hype but no real substance as simply a competent 6 parter dragged out over 12 episodes and then still left hanging a bit. The Mentalist is simply rubbish now.

The Titanic Award for Rapidly Sinking Quality in Media. Channel 9. Their news is padded with fluff, their morning show is Ricki Lake on Valium and even their cricket telecast is dull most of the time. Their reporting of major events like the Sydney Siege is generally embarrassing. To be fair 7 and 10 are likely worst – dont watch them

Biggest Media Circus The death of Phillip Hughes was tragic. The following weeks of coverage inexplicable really. Did not take long for the mourning cricketers to return to same old behaviour

Best Movies of 2014 Remembering previously outlined criteria not a lot to choose from here as watch much more TV than movies

Nightcrawler was a standout and Gone Girl very solid. Edge of Tomorrow was a pleasant surprise. Much like with Rick and Morty was suprised how much I ebjoyed The Lego Movie. Snowpiercer was an interesting ride and Grand Budapest suitably bizarre

Most Disappointing Movies of 2014

Dont get all the love for Guardians of the Galaxy. Amazing Spiderman 2 was anything but. Chef was vastly overrated. There are worse movies out there certainly – but I didnt see them

Best Sporting Moments of 2104 The Rise of Ricciardo. Brisbane Roar winning A league. Two golf majors for Rory. Waratahs win Super 12. Steve Smiths batting this series. Rabbitohs win NRL

Worst Sporting Moment of 2014 The Blues win SOO. Where is the fun in that ?

Favorite Book of 2014 Still Fooling ‘Em. Gone Girl a close second. I dont read much

Favorite Music of 2014 Darlene Love singing Christmas Baby Please Come Home for the 753rd time on Letterman

Best New Holiday Destination of 2014. Berlin.

Biggest Bitch in the World 2014 Berlin Bahn Service Desk Attendant

Most Disappointing New Holiday Destination Tough one really as all holidays are great as are all cities but would have to say the cost of living in Copenhagen combined with a very poor hotel room gives it the nod in a very small field

Best OS Coffee in 2014 Coffee to Go in Aix-En-Provence

Worst OS Coffee in 2014 Talk about your Melbourne Cup field! The clear winner though was some cafe in Millau whose name and location was immediately wiped from my memory luckily

Best CLP of 2014 CLP

Worst CLP of 2014. Still 2 days to go……

Best Photo of 2014 Saw some great sights and took some great photos. The Festival of Lights in Berlin was holding a slender lead until my GC1 came up with the clear winner only a couple of weeks ago


Dumb and Dumber – 2014 TV Finales

Posted: December 22, 2014 in TV

Remember the good old days when everyone discussed and debated the Sopranos series finale. Went on for weeks. Some loved it, some hated it. I started out disliking the ambiguity of it all but slowly came around to actually thinking it rather brilliant. It ran for 6 seasons – about the max for a show methinks. Mad Men will bow out next year after a similar run. Devoted followers would know of my admiration/angst over the brilliance of Fawlty Towers 12 episode model – everyone a classic, leave them wanting more. Of course comedy and drama are different animals.

Then we had the lumberjack episode of Dexter . Whenever there is a bad series finale these days inevitably the Dexter Lumberjack conclusion is used as the gold standard for worst series finale ever. Unlikely to ever be beaten – but damn there are some writers out there that are giving it a bloody good crack

SOA finished after 7 seasons with a completely stupid final scene/ last 5 minutes. Sutter shot his load early in the previous two excellent episodes but will sadly be remembered most for the finale. Whether you go with the Jesus symbolism or whatever does not matter – if the 3 hr police pursuit prior did not put you in the land of nod then you are a better man than me Gungadin. His love of drawn out musical montages also increased with time. Sadly

Lotta people creamed their jeans over The Fall Season 2 – too be fair most of that was the sight of Scully in uniform. It was drawn out drama to start with – should have been one season of 8 episodes like The Missing. Now The Missing had a slightly ambiguous ending too but that is ok as it was a self contained season and it fitted in with the general theme of the show. The Fall had so many plausibility issues already with the way that Spector wandered the streets of a CCTV-obsessed city with gay abandon that the only thing that could save it – apart from Scullys uniform tearing – was a definitive ending. But no – we just have to tease the possibility of a third season ca ching ca ching and go out with a self indulgent final last scene

Homeland has a bipolar clown as its main and most annoying character which is kind of fitting as it reflects my attitude with the show. Initially the fact that his wife only called Brody by his last name as well was enough to reach for the pills but in between the annoying there was some good stuff. Each season though you think will I watch it again? Of course you do – but you may just have finally done me a favour folks with one of the worst season endings (as opposed to series endings) have seen since lumberjacks were falling out of trees. There had been some tense moments and good set up prior to finale – and then we got a fucking episode of Days of Our Lives!! Seriously I am at a loss of words to describe the narrative shift – 90% of the episode devoted to bloody Nut job, her dead dad, her missing mum, her carrot top kid and a CIA operative who wants to bone her bad but then realised fighting the Taliban would be a more rewarding experience.

Of course these days we also have the mid-season finale. Sometimes this is left on a poignant moment like The Good Wife and other times it is simply “Ok time for Egg Nog folks, see ya next year” as with most others . In summary then I cant recall a satisfactory season/midseason/series finale this year and that tells me a lot about the current state of television and why I much prefer my drama in the short mini series version that UK do so well

And then we also have the shows that simply stayed at least one season too long. Front and centre at present is The Mentalist. It is simply drivel since Jane and Lisbon went all gooey eyed at each other. TV Sitcom 101 first rule is – keep the sexual tension going, no nooky nooky or show goes crappy crappy. Here endeth the lesson.

I see Larry David is quoted as saying he may not do a final season of Curb due to some left over ill will from negative comments about the Seinfeld finale – which I actually liked. Got news for ya Sonny – whether you do another season or not there will always be a final season.

Only difference is you may not have written it that way!

Yippee Ki Yay Mummy Boner

Posted: December 5, 2014 in Sport

The Striped One returned to competitive golf this morning – in his own tournament. Shot 77. Maybe not a massive surprise after such a lay off. Until you watch the round. It wasnt snap hook drives, lack of distance control, putting woes. He chunked at least 4 chips! Now anyone who has played golf with a certain dedication would understand the mental anquish of the dreaded yips. Usually affects putting but can also affect chipping – ask Brett Ogle. Not suggesting it is at that stage yet but the next couple of rounds will be fascinating to watch. If he can come back from that display quickly then he truly is a master of his mind. If not, say goodbye Tiger.

10 years ago it was assumed he would beat Jacks record of 18 majors. He has 14. There didnt appear to be a lot of opposition and lets face it they were a tad intimidated by a Tiger on the prowl. Golf is a mental game and often just seeing his name zooming up leader board could affect some players. Then he got some injuries while some other players got some belief. People were still rooting for him though . Speaking of which, his off course stick work was then revealed and the star lost some of its lustre. He no longer intimidated but could still play – won 5 times in 2013 , no majors but no mean feat. When he was on he was still the one to beat but he was on less regularly. Then more injuries and an aging body start to catch up. Young guys like Rory have learnt from Tiger and pumped up – and dumped annoying girlfriends. These guys are athletes even though some still like checked pants.

Trust me once your body starts to go and the niggles add up there is no getting it back – once you reach a certain age. Even with a die hard effort old Father Time marches on. Like his half sister Mother Nature he can be a real bitch. Just more predictable

So set your alarms for tomorrow boys and girls. You may be seeing the end of a sporting phenomenon or the rebirth of a true legend . Either way Jack can rest easy methinks