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Tibby’s Bowl Online Entertainment Magazine » Joe Corey’s PARTY FAVORS - 1/2006
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Joe Corey’s PARTY FAVORS - 1/2006

Posted by Ken in Party Favors (January 1, 2006 at 1:28 am)

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MANHATTAN - The World’s Oldest Teenager is now the World’s Freshest Corpse.

What was the purpose of dragging Dick Clark out to countdown 2006? Did he really wish America a “Happy nude dear!” Not that there’s anything wrong with wanting people to strip down for the coming year. That’s how we always like to celebrate major holidays at the Corey Estate. Sure there’s the powerful business of a man coming back from a stroke. But Teddy Bruschi already has filled that role. All Dick did was cling onto his former glory while sharing the screen with Ryan Seacrest. If there ever was a moment that begged for an on-camera murder -suicide this was it.

While I didn’t watch Dick Clark the entire night because I was partying hard, I caught enough glimpses of him sitting on the sofa in front of a window to ask that horrifying question - Is he replacing the Crypt Keeper like he did Ed McMahon?

And what’s so “rock’n” about a show that features Mariah Carey and the Pussycat Dolls. The Rock police need to yank that title off the show. But I guess “Dick Clark’s Pop’n New Year” sounds like a sex offense.

Well at least we know that this will be the year that we’ll be comfortable naked. Hopefully Jessica Alba listen to Dick.

ART OF 2005

I won’t give you a Top Ten list of great entertainment moments because there was only one true piece of entertainment that will mark the year for decades to come: R Kelly’s “Trapped in the Closet.”

Has there ever been a stranger more pathetic performance piece that has sold millions? It only build in its freakiness while transforming from a song cycle, video series and finally a live performance on MTV’s Music Awards. And at each step, it just got weirder. Not since Styx’s “Kilroy Was Here” has a musical “genius” gone completely nuts. But unlike the painful nature of seeing Tommy Shaw act between songs, it’s impossible to take your eyes off the trainwreck that is R. Kelly.

And it wasn’t just one song, but 12 different chapters of this story. And the videos reminded me of a dinner theater troupe. Of course I can’t fault the casting since it gave work to Michael K. Williams who played the scary Omar Little on HBO’s “The Wire.” He plays the cop who is banging R. Kelly’s wife and then goes home to get a cheating surprise from his trailer park bride. If you haven’t seen “The Wire,” rent it so you can see that he’s not merely a comic cop. And probably after watching him wandering Baltimore ripping off drug dens, you’ll wonder why he didn’t shotgun R. Kelly and have him trapped in a casket.

When he stood on the stage at the MTV Awards and attempted to lipsynch the project as if he was one man performance for a head trauma center, it was gold.

Musically it has the most listless backing track. Then R. Kelly reads a short story that would have been given a C- in a freshmen creative writing class. It wouldn’t pass as a Penthouse Forum letter. Everybody seems to be secretly screwing each other and hiding in the closets and waving guns. You figure a guy with felony charges potentially pending against him would lay off the gunplay. But no. Of course you’d also expect him to avoid all scat references. But then he tops off the entire project by having a dwarf crap in his pants. Where does such creativity come from? The only thing missing from this film is a guy in a gorilla suit speeding around in an MG Midget.

Forty years from now when people want to remember 2005, they’ll repeat the lines from “Trapped in the Closet.” Not because it is a work of art, but there’s not much else worth remembering.

FORGOT SOMETHING

My favorite DVD of the year is “Grizzly Man.” Werner Herzog has returned with this tale of a eco-nutjob who thought grizzly bears liked him only to get eaten by a grizzly. The bear also ate the guy’s girlfriend. If you have small children who think that bears are nice critters like the ones in the Coke ads, get this this film. Let them learn the truth about bears.

MR FOOTBALL

Don Cheadle is the greatest spokesperson the NFL could have hired. The man has the intensity of a fan without looking like a freak. I wanna watch a game with Don. I’ll even bring a bag of Cheetos.

WEDDING MADNESS

There are few reality shows more nerve wracking to work on than The Style Network’s “Whose Wedding Is It Anyway.” The only one that tops it for me is “Chainsaw Juggling Made Easy.”

What makes “Wedding” a tough gig is that you are filming an actual wedding. We’re spies and not the producers of the wedding like those Fox shows. There are no second takes during the ceremony. The camera zipped around the room chasing after the wedding planner and other folks. But we’re supposed to be invisible. This means I had to constantly find new places to hide so the shots weren’t ruined by having the Creepy PA too close to the action. And when I did hide, I couldn’t bump into a guest during the reception and ruin their experience. If I ruined the wedding I’d end up on Judge Judy being forced to pay for the cake I tipped over. The pressure during the wedding day to get the shot and at the same time keep out of the couple’s wedding pictures is crippling.

Thank goodness the couple we worked with had an open bar that lasted past our wrap time.

On a show like this there’s conflicting desires between the production crew and the wedding party. We want to see major disasters explode in the Wedding Planner’s face. Our planner had everything under control. There’s no TV in a smooth production. We need conflict and comedy. Midway through our production I joked with the director that I should attempt to plan a wedding so they could have a 2 hour Disasterpiece. “The Bride Wore Tears” would be the name of my wedding planning business. And my catch phrase: “Can’t this work for you, too?” If you want me to plan you wedding, email me at corey3rd@hotmail.com. I can only promise you that I’ll have a minister and paperwork. Everything after that is up for grabs.

For those of you wondering what episode I lurked around, it’s Ivy Robinson’s Chapel Hill wedding with the Marine honor guard. And if you’re a fan of the show, Ivy’s hair does look impressive in person.

DESTROYER OF DREAMS

Thank goodness I wasn’t nine years old last month. I don’t know if I could have handled Johnny Damon signing to the Yankees after all he meant to the Boston RedSox. It’s hard to not see him as a traitor to the cause. How can a man who hated the Yankees put on the NY black cap? As Cindy Lauper sang, “Money changes everything.”

While it will be painful to hear Damon’s name called, at least the man who walks into center field in the Bronx will be clean shaven with short hair. I won’t have to root against Captain Caveman. They might as well just announce “now batting, John Damon.” He’s just another millionaire in Manhattan going to work in pinstripes to me.

I don’t think he’ll have a fun time in the House that Ruth Built. His weak throwing arm will come back to haunt him in that cavern outfield. And I recall seeing a stat that Damon’s worst offensive numbers came from visits to Yankee Stadium. I predict George will be grousing about Damon in August. And John will wish he was beloved Johnny instead of just another prick like A-Rod, Sheff and the Big Unit.

At least we now know what Johnny Damon would do: he’d go for the money.

HO HO WHORES

Who asked for follow up films to “Big Mama’s House” and “Cheaper By the Dozen?” I have a sock full of dog poop that needs to be bashed over your head.

Does anyone in Hollywood know what’s funny anymore? All the comedies that were out around Christmas were devoid of humor. I fear how stinky the comedy slate in February will be. And the sad part is that you have people who used to be funny starring in these films. What exactly was supposed to the “Fun with Dick and Jane?” It had all the focus of a Horatio Sanz performance. What’s funny about a couple robbing coffeeshops - especially after they stole $10 out of your wallet and held you hostage for 2 hours. You are victims of Dick and Jane’s crime spree if you paid for a ticket.

All the movies that Judd Apatow touches are about as funny as a Tom DeLay benefit. “The 40 Year Old Virgin” and “Anchorman” could have had the same number of laughs as 10 minute short films. It’s just a shame he wasn’t involved in “Dukes of Hazzard” so I can blame him for that stinker - although Broken Lizard might be Judd’s farm team. I enjoyed “Super Troopers” (on cable), but “Dukes” and “Club Dread” show they can be as unfunny as any washed up Saturday Night Live regulars.

Remember when Steve Martin was funny? And to have Steve going against Eugene Levy should be like Bird vs. Magic. Instead it’s got all the comic chops of Steven Seagal vs. a ham sandwich. I take that back. Seagal and. a ham sandwich are the same things.

Well at least someone took pity on us and decided to put “American Pie: Band Camp” straight to video. And what’s the point of seeing any comedy in the theater since you know that the DVD will be unrated and have bare breasts? You’re basically buying a ticket to see the “safe” version of the film. If you wait 4 months, you can at least see

Maybe in 2006 there will be something in the cineplex worth a laugh besides when the kid in the vest calls the golden goo “butter.”

CREATURE DOUBLE FEATURE

If you grew up in Boston during the late 70s, your mind was probably scarred by WLVI’s “Creature Double Feature.” On Saturday afternoon, they’d run back-to-back monster flicks. I was only able to absorb this during our trips up to the Bay State, but I remember the excitement of watching it at my cousin’s house. I still remember coming back from an early morning of sledding and getting to watch “The Brain That Wouldn’t Die” as our toes defrosted.

Over half of the 202 films have come out as either public domain releases, Sony’s Godzilla collections, Universal’s Classic Monsters sets or MGM’s Midnite Movie Double Features. And now Lion’s Gates has jumped into the fun offering us American International Pictures titles that are controlled by Sam Arkoff’s estate.

The first two double feature DVDs are “Earth Vs. the Spider’ with “War of the Colossal Beast” and “How to Make a Monster” with “Blood of Dracula.” All four are low budget scary gems and priced to move since you can get them for $9.28 from deepdiscountdvd.com.

The first DVD features special effects magician Bert I. Gordon. He’s the low budget Ray Harryhausen. It’s a shame that Bert doesn’t get the same coolness as Ray. I discovered the magic of Bert when they made fun of him on Mystery Science Theater 3000 (along with Sandy Frank). But unlike Ray who overshadowed his directors, Bert directed his films. “Earth Vs. The Spider” (1958) is another case of Arkoff pumping up the title. The Earth doesn’t really fight the huge spider. He only has to face a small town police force that worships Don Knotts. Bert does some cool effects having a real tarantula torturing a small town. It’s fun to watch his films frame by frame to figure out how he made the effect work with such a low budget. There’s a funny moment in the film when one of the heros is seen working at a movie theater showing “The Amazing Colossal Man.” This was Bert’s movie about a man who exposes himself to an atomic bomb and ends up growing out of control. The sad part is that this title is controlled by the Jim Nicholson estate. He was the other head of AIP. Right now the head of the estate is Susan Hart. You might remember her as the original fembot from “Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine.” She hasn’t made a deal with Lionsgate so this Bert classic is locked in the vault. Luckily Arkoff has the sequel “War of the Colossal Beast” (1958). Even though we thought Col. Glenn Manning had died when he fell into the Hoover Dam after demolishing Las Vegas, he’s popped back up on the radar. But the radiation has taken its toll and half his face is skull. He’s not quite the man or Colossal Man, he used to be. There’s a recap of the first movie, but it crops up halfway through the film. A big bonus is that the finale is in color - it adds to the jolt. It does feel odd to only see the second half of the landmark CDF double feature. Susan Hart needs to strike a deal for the other half of the greatest indie studio’s vault. A weird piece of trivia is that Arkoff went with “Colossal Beast” so people wouldn’t think it was a sequel.

There is a bittersweet edge to the second disc. Both “How to Make a Monster” (1958) and “Blood of Dracula” (1957) were directed by Herbert L. Strock. He was born in Boston in 1918 (remember when that year haunted Bostonians?), but unfortunately he passed away last November. Hopefully he knew that two of his titles would be coming out on DVD so folks could enjoy his AIP entertainment. I wonder if he ever saw these films on the CDF? “How to Make a Monster” is about a make-up man ticked off that American International is getting out of the monster biz and he’s getting fired after years of work. So he gets his revenge by making real killer monsters out of the actors doing “Teenage Frankenstein vs. Teenage Wolfman.” They go off to take revenge on the studio suits behind the no horror policy. And it’s another black and white film that ends in color. It’s fun to see the monster heads to a lot of the early AIP scary flicks. “Blood of Dracula” has a vampire loose at a private girl’s school. Strock’s films look like a twisted Ozzie and Harriet world. Clean living with devious folks smiling from the breakfast nook.

The films look crisp and clean. They look better from my childhood memories since that inolved my cousin Bill adjusting the superloop to keep us scared on those Saturday afternoons. There’s no bonus features. Not even a trailer. But it’s four more CDF titles that you can now have at home. Seeing how Sony hasn’t announced what they’re doing with the Midnite Movie Double Features line, it’s good to see Lionsgate keeping us happy. In fact they are supposed to have more titles out in April with “The Day the World Ended” & “The She-Creature” and “The Saga of the Viking Women” & “Teenage Caveman” slated.

While watching these films, I can still hear Bill’s mom yelling for us to go outside and do something productive.

DEAD AIR

I miss Trio TV. I know it’s supposed to be kept alive as a broadband site. But it’s just not the same. Damn those idiots at NBC-Universal that killed this channel. It was sad seeing them burn off their programming in the past year. It was like watching cosmonauts die in orbit.

I miss their reruns of classic Letterman, Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In and the Parking Lot series. And they gave us “Good Clean Porn.” Why did Trio die and Spike survive?

Everyone talks about the 500 channel universe, but realistically it will never get that out of control. Sure you have the brand spins like 19 different channels name Discovery _____. Although from what I’ve been seeing with this Slingbox technology, the Channel U concept is getting closer. Forget about 500 channels from a sat dish. Soon there will be millions of channels with people running their own TV channels that their family and close friends will be able to “tune” into via the internet. I know there’s a bunch of people aching for my James Bond marathon that’s commercial free. I do hope the networks are ready for the consumer being the distributor.

I’ve decided that Ovation is my new fall back channel since the death of Trio. And will Boomerang please quit running Baby Looney Tunes and Tom and Jerry Kids. Those cartoons have no reason to exist.

PRESLEY PRICE DROP

So after I whined about why Paramount won’t come up with a decent boxset package for their Elvis titles, they did the next best thing. You can now get 5 of their 9 Elvis films for $5.99 at deepdiscountdvd.com. This includes “Blue Hawaii” and “Girls! Girls! Girls!” So now I can torture guests with letterboxed Elvis with those majestic sunsets behind him.

OPIE AND ANTHONY

I’m not a fan of Opie and Anthony on XM radio. But I heard their gag when they fooled a woman in line for the “Tony Danza Show” into thinking she was on the cellphone with Tony Danza. “I know who’s a big Tony Danza fan” is now a catch phrase around the house. You can hear the funny at http://www.foundrymusic.com/opieanthony/displaymedia.cfm/id/9075/

FEAR THIS

They’re making a new Broadway bound musical of Dr. Dolittle with Tommy Tune in the lead. I can hear this dog talking.



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