Real Life Seniors Gettin’ Around.

4 Apr

It has come to my attention that the Beach Boys are on tour again. You may remember the Beach Boys from your youth in the 1960s; but if you are reading this blog you are most likely more familiar with them through their cameos through the 1990s in fabulous TV shows like Full House.

All the original Boys in the 1960s.

I am finding it hard to decide if i should buy tickets or not. I have mixed feelings about the band going on tour again, because it is 2013 and most of them are pushing 70. Now that the band members are no longer seniors in high school but rather seniors in real life will hearing them sing about surfing, stealing their daddy’s car, and hooking up with young California girls be as exhilarating?  As long as their harmonies are still tight I think the concert will be better.

The Beach Boys Today.

In case you didn’t know, in their heyday The Beach Boys had over 40 #1 hits. My personal favorites are “Don’t Worry Baby,” “Wouldn’t it Be Nice” and the uuber saucy “Be True to Your School.” Brother’s Dennis, Brian, and Carl Wilson decided to start a good old family band with cousin Al and close family friend Mike. Originally called the Pendletons, the always beach ready teenagers sang fabulously flirtations ditty’s about earning teenage bragging rights through surfing, drag racing, and by taking girls wherever they want to go in their very own woody.

I love them the most for the way their innocently suggestive lyrics still sound dirty today.  Although i will enjoy seeing the remaining members in concert (Dennis Died in 1983 due to “misadventure” when he drowned while drunk and Carl died from Lung cancer) i am still going to miss the original group i know from the 1960s.

Beach Boys, I miss the way you all hold one large but very light weight object with one arm,  your hip matching Hawaiian shirts and jackets, and most importantly your seductively smooth harmonies. Beach Boys I miss your face. 

Although You Are Gone Your Fragrance Lives On

23 Mar

This morning Hollywood lost one if it’s last remaining starlets of the golden age.

It is no secret that Elizabeth Taylor was radiant.  A few years ago I heard my favorite Elizabeth Taylor story from a friend who was a hairdresser in Santa Monica. In the 60s he claimed to have worked closely with Ms. Taylor’s people.  He told me that Elizabeth was gorgeous in person and every time she walked into a room your attention naturally gravitated towards her. After he had seen her at a few parties, only for short periods of time, he had begun to wonder how she could look younger and so well rested every time he saw her. Do you want to know why?

He claimed that a couple times a year, Elizabeth would retire to a resort in the Swiss Mountains somewhere for weeks at a time. Her doctors would put her to sleep for days while she remained in bed connected to feeding tubes with hired nurses exercising her limbs around the clock. So Hollywood Babylon, I know. But for some reason it’s those extravagant celebrity stories that make her a legend in my eyes.

Most of us associate her gorgeous violet eyes, jet black hair and pale white skin with the movie Cleopatra (1963) or as the inspiration for Michael Jackson’s fucked up face.  However, I will always remember her for her ability to juggle acting with her love affair with the tabloids.

Since the beginning of her acting career Ms. Taylor had been close with the paparazzi. In fact her parents’ close relationship with famed Hollywood columnist Hedda Hopper helped Liz land her first acting jobs on the Universal lot. In the last 60 or so years her relationship with the press has been dramatic. She was constantly being scrutinized for her bad health, her strange relationship with Michael Jackson and her 8 failed marriages to large profiled men like Nicky Hilton, Michael Todd and also to his close friend Eddie Fischer.

In memory of the late Elizabeth Taylor, who died early this morning of congestive heart failure at the age of 79, I would like to share my 3 favorite Taylor movies. Feel free to share yours.

1) Giant (1956)- We got to see Elizabeth gracefully age 30 years with Rock Hudson and James Dean in this epically melodramatic movie. She had finally made the leap from child star to adult actress.

2) Father of the Bride (1950)- Taylor’s natural high from her fairy tale wedding with Conrad Hilton translated beautifully on screen making this one of the most memorable films of the 50s.

3) Butterfield 8(1960)- as an emotionally charged party-girl/ part-time model Elizabeth Taylor made it cool for big actresses to play call girls. Without this movie there would be no big stars in Breakfast at Tiffany’s(1961)  or Pretty Woman(1990) they would just be forgettable smutty B movies.

Elizabeth, I miss your ability to entrap men, your large jet black yet elegant helmet hair, and of course your intoxicating white diamonds.

Elizabeth Taylor, I Miss your face- Shassie.

When Jordan Catalano Is Around My Whole Body Feels It.

6 Feb

If you are like me you grew up believing that  the better part of your high school career would be spent skipping class to smoke in the bathroom and making out with delicious guys in the boiler room. If you are like me this probably didn’t actually happen. And if you are like me you got all of these ideas from ABC’s early ‘90s drama My So Called Life.

In case you don’t remember, My So-Called Life (MSCL) began in 1994 and was about Angela Chase, a social outcast played by Claire Danes, and her dismal view on the high school experience.  Although the show only lasted 19 episodes its pre-grunge style, unique storytelling techniques, and groundbreaking characters (most notably Rickie Vasquez the first gay teen on primetime T.V.) have made it one of the most memorable shows in ABC history.  However for me the best part of the series was the moody and uneducated Jordan Catalano, played by Jared “ice eyes” Leto.

Every week Jordan had me hanging on his every word. And Jordan looked so good in a blue plaid shirt that I didn’t care he could only read at a third grade level. After the show ended on a relationship cliffhanger I was devastated. But luckily Jared Leto’s career did not die with the series.  I could see a trace of Catalano in every character he played. After MSCL Leto was in a zillion fantastic movies including  American Psycho (2000 ), Requiem for a Dream (2000 ), Girl Interrupted (1999),  Fight Club (1999)  , and most recently as John Lennon’s overweight slayer in Chapter 27 (2007 ).   

Currently Leto spends most of his time writing songs and using his drop dead gorgeous looks to play bass for his band 30 Seconds to Mars. Although the band is decent it is nowhere near as rad as the Frozen Embryos.   

Jordan, I miss your inability to decipher the days o f the week, the way your words slur together when you try to read, and your ever seductive locker lean.

Jordan Catalano,  I miss your face- Shassie

A Snubbed Angel at the 82nd Annual Oscars

7 Mar

Every year the Oscars pay a quick 5-10 minute tribute to those in Hollywood that have passed. This past year had a large death toll, including John Hughes, Michael Jackson, Patrick Swayze, Bea Arthur, Betsy Blair,Dom DeLuise and Brittany Murphy to name a few.  But surprisingly, the 82nd Oscar tribute left out many celebrities from their montage, including the gifted Farrah Fawcett.

Now, I was already all hot and bothered on June 25th when I heard that one of Charlie’s own had lost her battle with cancer. I was livid that the Farrah news was quickly overshadowed by the death of Michael Jackson. But tonight when I saw that Jackson had been included in the Oscar In Memoriam tribute, after he had only appeared in  one major motion picture (The Wiz(1978)), when Fawcett has starred in more than three (including her independent spirit award-winning performance in The Apostle(1997), as well as  See You in the Morning(1989), Cannonball Run(1981) and the fantastic Man of the House (1995), which she starred in with J.T.T.) I was exasperated; and as I screamed out loud, I had to quickly rewind my tivo to make sure my eyes didn’t miss the goddess of 70s popculture-the Oscars are getting sloppy.

Farrah Fawcett is best known for her blown out 70s trade mark hair sported in both her infamous pin-up poster and on Television as  Jill Munroe from ABC’s Charlie’s Angels.  Fawcett was one of few romantic Hollywood discoveries, ala Lana Turner and Schwab’s Pharmacy, a producer saw her picture in a layout of sorority girls in Crashbox magazine in the early 70s and crafted her into a star.  In 1976, she landed a role as one of three kick ass women detectives in the infamous Charlie’s Angels. She has also acted on Broadway and in various Television films. I would say she was much more of an actor than the so-called King of Pop.

At 50, Farrah became one of the oldest women to appear nude in Playboy.

Farrah, I miss your  tendency to follow the instructions of men you have never met, your tight red bathing suits complimented by your angelic glow, and your unnaturally windblown curls.

Farrah Fawcett, I, for one, miss your face-Shassie

*Bea Arthur’s death was also ignored by the Academy. Some intern is going to get a lot of shit for this.

I’ll Never Let Go Billy

21 Feb

There is only one movie that I have seen (and paid for) in theaters more than 6 times. That movie is Titanic (1997).  Over a decade ago, in 1997, I was just a 9-year-old, third grade girl desperately in love with J.T.T. But, the first time I laid eyes on Leonardo DiCaprio in the Titanic trailer, the drool hanging off the bottom of my lip told me that J.T.T and I were over. There was a new man in my life. Leo and I have been together ever since.

With the recent release of James Cameron’s Avatar (2009) and the weekend release of Scorsese’s Shutter Island (2010) it is clear that, despite 13 years of aging,  the Titanic alumni are still very relevant to Hollywood today: Kate Winslet took home an Oscar last year for her performance in The Reader (2008).   DiCaprio has been nominated for two Academy Awards, post Titanic, and has had the starring role in stellar films like The Departed(2006 ), Blood Diamond (2007 ),  Gangs of New York (2002 ), and Catch Me if you Can (2002).   Bill Paxton stars in his own show on HBO, Big Love. And Lord knows Kathy Bates hasn’t gone anywhere. In fact, the whole cast of Titanic’s careers seem to be unsinkable, with the exception of Billy Zane.

In Titanic, Billy Zane played Rose’s aggressive and possessive boyfriend Cal. His hairless head and extremely fit body made him easy to spot among the Hollywood crowd in various award shows, but as far as the Big Screen is concerned, Billy Zane has just been blending in.

Post Titanic, the Chicago native has been playing mostly small supporting roles in a series of B-movies and Television shows, most notably as Winston Funk, Christina Applegate’s ex lover on ABC’s Samantha Who?.  Although his face has not appeared on the Big screen his voice has been flooding the airwaves of children’s movies, he was the voice of John Rolf in the Disney sequel; Pocahontas II: A Brave New World, and in  video games in SSX Tricky as Broderick ‘Brodi’ Ford and again as Ansem in Kingdom Hearts.

Currently Billy Zane has bit parts in 4 movies scheduled to be released late this year: 4Chosen, The Roommate, Enemies Among Us, and The Confidant.  I, for one, am ready for Mr. Zane to get the lead role he deserves.

Billy I miss your shimmering scalp, your ability to embody evil and your sinfully seductive left side smirk. 

Billy Zane, I miss your face- Shassie

p.s. Interesting fact: Zane first appeared on the Big screen as one of Biff’s henchmen in Back to the Future(1985).

People call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat or a prostitute.

17 Nov

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Every good nostalgic blog mentions something about their unnatural crush on a cartoon character from MTV’s Daria.  For me, like many, I was desperately in love with Trent, apathetic musician and older brother to Jane. But Daria was more than just hot cartoon characters.

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Daria and her stud, Trent

Daria was arguably the single best cartoon character ever to grace television in the late ‘90s.  She is the reason for my scholarly apathy; Because of Daria, I skipped senior prom, developed a monotone voice and I became the girl who would literally watch the volleyball roll past me in gym class (when I even bothered getting changed), hell my haircut even resembles Daria’s. I didn’t know why I hated high school or my peers, but I knew it was in the same spirit of everything I loved while growing up.  Apathy on T.V. raised my generation.

Daria premiered on MTV in 1997. Her character was first introduced in Beavis and Butthead. In 2002 the show was canceled and doomed to live in syndication on the “N” network.

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Daria on Beavis and Butthead

I have been waiting years for Daria to be released on DVD. I once met a friend of a friend whose uncle was the producer of the show, I then begged for a copy but no dice.  It was announced a few months ago in the opening preview to The State series DVD that my wait will be worth it, Daria is scheduled to be released in fall 2010.

Daria, I miss the way you pair large black boots with skirts, the way you get joy out of “Sick Sad World” and your Mark Twain bed shirt.

Daria Morgendorffer, I miss your face- Shassie

UPDATE: Daria on DVD will be out to buy on May 11, 2010!

Still learning about the complexities of friendship…

16 Nov

Do you know what T.V. is missing? The advice and snappy dialogue of an educator and elder. Not a young hip teacher like Mr. Kotter (Welcome Back Kotter), Doug Stevens (Swingtown), or even Mr. Matthews (90210). What T.V. needs is a new Mr. Feeny.

Mr. Feeny was arguably the best part of ABC’s Boy Meets World and now he has disappeared completely. William Daniels was the man behind the grey mustache.

Daniels had a stellar pre-Boy career. He has co-starred in some of the most influential pieces of pop-culture; he was Dustin Hoffman’s father in The Graduate (1967), as John Adams in 1776 (1972) and as the voice of KITT in the original Night Rider.

Good news, Daniels is still alive and ready for a Boy Meets World Reunion. Currently he has no new projects, although a KITT GPS voice is rumored.

William, I miss your large eternally present mustache, your various neutral colored sweaters and your frank lectures.

William Daniels, I miss your face.