Monday, November 19, 2018

When Will 'SVU' Get Its Act Together??????????????????????????

                                   After the death of his sister, the show's writers are so busy trying to make a character for Philip Winchester, as ADA Peter Stone, to fit into.  He is no impassioned Stephanie March, as Alex Cabot, with that hair, and those glasses.  All the writers can seem to cook up for him is his constantly talking about his past as a baseball player, which makes me think he should go back to it.  It is known he loves group sex, drinking, and has a hot body for it.  Too bad that body was not shown in this episode.  It might have livened thing up.

                                    Things start out promisingly, with a drunken Stone awakening in Finn's apartment.  The scene was convincingly played by both actors, and thank God Finn has the decency to have a coffee maker on premises.  I mean, otherwise I could not visit there!  No coffee!  No way, Jose!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                       A women came up to Peter, and accused him of raping her years before. She slaps him across the face.  Stone feels she is wrong but wants to know the truth.  Even if she is right.  Ever hear of letting sleeping dogs lie?

                                          Of course, he makes the mistake of telling Olivia, and she is all over this, like a dog with a bone, ready to defend Sarah, and throw her colleague under the bus.

                                            Now Sarah Kent, well played by Alexandra Breckinridge, has a husband, Gary, played by Kevin Kane, whom she has never told about this, and the reason is made clear.  He is one of these nuts who thinks, with this in her past, she is not the woman he married, is not pure, and dishonors his manhood,  Hey, asshole, you are dishonoring that manhood yourself!  You think a woman, or anyone else, asks to be sexually assaulted?  Or wants to???????????  Get a grip on your gonads, moron!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                              The moron ups the episode to psycho extremes, when he marches into the bar, where Stone is, confronting him with a gun, and holding him hostage, sending the other patrons out, with Olivia and Company, plus his wife and daughter, waiting outside.  I swear I was hoping this guy would just kill himself in front of Stone, because while I would feel for the wife and daughter, it would have made more sense, in terms of this guy's sudden derangement.  But no, everyone lives, and things die down, until the paternity of Sarah's daughter becomes a question. Gary now thinks she is not his, so a DNA test is ordered.

                                                 What is next seems to come out of nowhere.  Stone's old baseball buddy, Reggie Gregg, played by Austin Peck, now runs the bar in question in New York.  In a scene I, at first could not believe, Olivia goes to Reggie, pleading with him to commit perjury to save Peter.
Now, Olivia has gone so bonkers over the years, I would not put this past her.  She bends the law to her own whim, then says how she is such a shining advocate,  Right!  She gets Reggie to admit he was in the room with Peter, that he raped Sarah, then set she and Peter up.  With no back up, Olivia, hero of the moment, rescues the muscular Reggie singlehandedly, who goes without resistance.

                                                     Oh, and the daughter IS Gary's kid!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                    Is this for real?  So, who cares about Peter anymore, as long as Olivia gets her man?  And in the final scene, by the water, it is Olivia, not Peter, who gets the last shot!  I was pissed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                      Please come up with a new story arc for Peter!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                      And stop making a heroine out of Olivia, whose best days are behind her!
Just look at this!  Such a downer!  Why end every show with THIS?????????????

Now, Here Is Some Satisfying Fiction!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                             This book came out last year, in 2017, and I want to know how the hell I missed it?  I am glad I did not, because, in this year of #MeToo, there has been a glut of fiction, involving women being threatened by men, whether personally or by political extremism.  "Fruit Of The Drunken Tree" held such  promise, and delivered so little, I was beginning to get down on fiction.

                                                "Behold The Dreamers" restored my faith.  It is a dark portrait of two families pursuing the American dream--one hoping to have it, the other hoping to maintain it.  What is interesting here is, while the families are on opposite ends of the economic spectrum--especially in Manhattan--their dynamics are not all that different.  The wives are really nasty pieces of work who know how to play the power game with each other, while the husbands are na├»ve and stupid.  This adds tension to the notion they are supposed to be the breadwinners and protectors, when it is the wives who are the real cutthroat brains behind everything.

                                                    This first novel. by Imbold Mbue, turns the whole "America Is Great" myth on its head, and I love the criticisms of both sides of The American Dream she dishes out.  There are no easy answers, and one family gives up on The American Dream, and retreats back to their original country, and I am not so sure they were wrong.

                                                      Everyone has the right to dream.  But here, it is shown, those dreams do not necessarily come true.  Even if the seem to.

                                                        Yes, a dark message, I now. But a welcome change from those platitudes of empowerment.  Which will only get one so far.

                                                          This book will be tough for many to swallow.  But I applaud Mbue for the courage of her convictions, in writing it.

                                                             Highly recommended, darlings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, This Is How "Apocalypse" Ends! Not With A Bang, But A Whimper!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                Girls, I am telling you, when Angela Bassett appeared as Marie Levaux, I was waiting for her to blow all those mother fuckers, like Langdon and his crowd, straight to Hell.  She livened things up a bit, but then, with bathtub time travel, the return of all the witches, especially Misty, and the trendy interracial couple at the beginning, spawning another Satanic child, I found myself asking, what was all this for?

                                  Was it a dream, like "The Wizard Of Oz?"  Or a "Groundhog's Day" thing, destined to repeat itself, again and again??????????????

                                   Thank God for the "Coven" witches, who made things palatable.  Please give Kathy Bates a better and less annoying role, next season.
                                   I am telling you, I thought it was going to be a slug fest between Madison and Mallory, with one of them being the New Supreme!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Now, that might have been interesting.

                                   Please give the gifted Evan Peters more substance to act next season, too!

                                   As far as I am concerned, the witches and their Academy can stay around forever!  They rule!  And I want to go there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                   Who knows what the next season will bring.  I can tell you, thanks to Brad Falchuk, it will inevitably bring Gwyneth, but, please, let it bring BLYTHE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                     "Apocalypse" still topped "Roanoke." But not by much.

What You Lee Is What You Get!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                        Now, girls, you know it is a rare day in Hell, when I read non-fiction.  I have nothing against it, I just prefer the fictional side of things.  But sometimes I am compelled in the other direction, and when I posted, recently, about seeing Melissa McCarthy do her dramatic turn as forger Lee Israel, whom I was acquainted with, I knew I had to read the book.

                                         So, I did.  It is like sitting down, and having Lee talk at you, because if face to face, you would not get a word in edgewise.  The reader also gets her abrasive personality, without having to deal with it, one on one, which is a blessing.

                                         But there is more to Lee than the movie suggested.  She was quite a social gadfly, not quite the pathetic Manhattan spinster the movie made her out to be, though she did exhibit that side, and she apparently had more relationships with women than the mysterious "Elaine," in the movie, who turns out to be a real person, but, like the movie, these relationships went nowhere, most likely because of Lee.

                                          In a brilliant stroke, Lee goes on to detail she how pulled off her forgeries, and displays ample evidence of her work.  She also had a fixation on  Louise Brooks, who comes off as fascinating in her own right, and she even--now 'OZ' loves will flip over this--forged letters from actress Clara Blandick, memorable for portraying Aunt Em in "The Wizard Of Oz."  Lee really got around.

                                             She also had a mother and stepfather, living in Florida, whom she did not want to find out about her escapades, and a brother with whom she was estranged.  In other words, she had family; she was not the all-out loner the film portrays, but she chose to live that way.  Cats were her only humane connection.

                                               Lee's book is slight, but fun.  She does have a sense of humor.  At the end of the book, she signs her actual signature, proof that the book is not a forgery.  Lee gets the last laugh on everyone.

                                                If she were here today, she would be having a blast!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Now, Really, What Song Could Be More Appropriate For This Birthday?????????????

                                  I play "The Lusty Month Of May," every May 1, but I will get only one chance to play "When I'm 64."  I cannot believe I--a baby boomer--have arrived at the age.   Where has the time gone?

                                   Of course, everyone waits for this age, until they can finally relate to The Beatles song.  Thank heaven, I still have hair!  And my facial creams!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                    I wish all on here an exciting year, and for me an improvement over the last one, what with the passing of my father, and David friend, Bruce!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                     But today is a day for celebration!  So, let's start with the song!

"Mirror, Mirror, On The Wall!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

                                     And so, girls we come to the end of Musical Theater Week, with the birthday of yours truly.

                                     "Lord, Lord, Lord, that woman is ME!," as the song goes, and as I turn 64, a year I have been anticipating and dreading.  It was the age at which my mother passed, 40 years ago next year, and my first thought is, "How did I arrive here so fast?"

                                         So, in keeping with things, I thought it best to start with "Who's That Woman?"  This year, as will be seen, there will be two birthday songs, and the second one, when heard, will make perfect sense.

                                          Yesterday, we saw "A Chorus Line" at City Center, which was perfection.  Thank you, Baayork Lee!  And I received birthday wishes, from my animal friends--Seamus, Sparky, and Indiana Jones!  And Dexter!  All are dogs, except Sparky, who is a parrot, and gives me sweet bird kisses.

                                            I will report on "A Chorus Line," and others things yet to be written.

                                            To think I have reached 64!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                            Here are two renditions of "Who's That Woman?"  An audio from the Original Cast Recording, back in 1971, and a live one of the production we saw, 40 years later, in 2011!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Saturday, November 17, 2018

Happy Birthday To A Musical Theater Legend!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                      Neva Small has been a Legend Of The Musical Stage, it would seem, since she was knee high.  Today, Neva celebrates her 66th birthday, and I wish her all the happiness she is so deserving of.

                                        My Neva autographed record cover of "Henry, Sweet Henry," is framed on my apartment wall. She signed it the night David and I saw her in the "Henry, Sweet Henry" presentation at 54 Below. Which she narrated.

                                           Neva does not work as often as those of us who adore her would like, but when she does, it is always special.

                                             So, Neva, here is to you, on your special day!

                                             Still, and always, a Legend!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!