Category Archives: Attention Must Be Paid
subjects that deserve more appreciation – “Attention Must Be Paid”
There are lots of people out there making content exclusively for the web, but there’s hardly anybody that does it as well as Lindsay Ellis. A Channel Awesome contest to create a companion show for the Nostalgia Critic series brought her to our attention as the Nostalgia Chick, but it’s clear that Ms. Ellis has a lot more to offer us than a look back at the past – her brand of criticism not only informs, it educates – and that’s an even more rare thing than simply making quality videos.
I haven’t done one of these Attention Must Be Paid posts in a zillion years and for whatever reason, I suddenly had the desire to tackle a web series that isn’t in production anymore and hasn’t been for several years. So, without further ado, I give you Chad Vader: Day Shift Manager!
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If you’re new to the Attention Must Be Paid feature, here’s the deal: when I run across something that I think is great and isn’t getting the props it deserves, I write it up in this space. Unfortunately, AMBP has become a graveyard of canceled projects, and today’s celebrated artist, Indian Wife, is not an exception – they’re on what is probably best described as permanent hiatus. Still, that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy their music.
Indian Wife is out of New York and describes their genre as Noise Rock, but I’m not educated enough to elaborate on that – I’ll just say it’s good music. Comprised of Sbags, Indian Mike and Chris (who you’ll recognize from Rattrap Bumpkin), this is the sort of band that you’d invite to your house for a barbecue, or ask to help you defend the homestead from an invasion of saucer people – they kick that much ass.
Listening to Indian Wife is like watching someone paint a masterpiece with a broom; a giant piece of canvas is manipulated with lots of long, thick strokes and vivid colors over and over again. This is on full display in their five track album, Dirt Worshiper, which is available for FREE download.
If you like buildup and payoff, then the opening track is for you. “Comstock Lode” starts up like an old, reliable car and just keeps going… it slides out of the driveway, down the suburban streets and eventually to the highway – that’s when you find out you find out that this car has a big ass engine. And tremolo picking – I friggin love tremolo picking! “Mannegishi” makes excellent use of a chorus effect on the guitar, and the song is just tight; everyone is together. I love the reverb and delay on “Horizon;” it creates an atmosphere all its own on all of the songs, but perhaps is best used on this track; it’ll lull you to sleep… and i can’t even begin to speculate on what sort of dreams you’d have… they might be something like this. Then “Holy Water” comes on and kicks your ass with power and feedback until the final number, “Ezra Kind” rocks you on home.
Check out Indian Wife – it won’t cost you a thing but it’ll enrich your life!
more Music Reviews at creativejamie.com/category/music-reviews/
more Music Reviews at creativejamie.com/category/attention-must-be-paid/
If you’re new to the Attention Must Be Paid (AMBP) feature, here’s the deal: when I run across something that I think is great and isn’t getting the props it deserves, I write it up in this space. Unfortunately, AMBP is starting to become a graveyard of canceled projects, including Party Down and Air. Today, we welcome Outsourced.
Outsourced was only on for one season (September 23, 2010 through May 12, 2011) and 22 episodes, but it left an undeniable impression upon my mind. The characters and their stories resonated with me for reasons I can’t explain – but then, well written scripts will do that for ya.
The show follows the adventures of Todd, an American who is sent to India to manage a call center for a mail order novelty company… I know, a fish out of water story is a little cliche, not to mention the fact that the show takes place in a contemporary setting where American jobs are being outsourced overseas and yet people are still buying stuff from mail order catalogs? Whatever – it’s all about the characters and their relationships with each other.
Get Your Head Bobble On
I have to admit, I never thought I’d see a sitcom where they attempted to explain the head bobble… it’s just one of the great things about this show. After working with many people from India and the Middle East, it’s refreshing to see people I know represented on TV fairly accurately.
“Sometimes yes, sometimes no, sometimes neither, sometimes both.”
Yeah, that’s exactly what it means!
Characters are AWESOME!
Initially, I thought I would talk about my favorite characters in this section, but frankly, I love all of the characters on this show – even Rajiv, the assistant manager you’re supposed to hate. He’s deliciously evil, but his motives are pure – he needs to become a manager so he can prove his worth to the family of the woman he loves… they all have great stories like that. Madhuri, who is at first portrayed to be soft spoken and demure has a tremendous singing voice that could take her to places most of us only dream of, but she is happy with her job at the telemarketing company that pays enough to support her family.
I believe Outsourced was not renewed due to NBC’s own bungling – if they hadn’t moved the show’s time slot mid season, I doubt it’s rating would have fallen off so sharply. To expect TV watchers to have such loyalty after barely half a season is asking a lot – particularly the audience that has a hard time choosing between this and The Mentalist. In any case, I just don’t understand how they expected the NBC audience to watch three straight hours of sitcoms – especially since The Office and Parks & Recreation are almost the same show, even sharing some of the same actors.
If you’re new to the Attention Must Be Paid (AMBP) feature, here’s the deal: when I run across something that I think is great and isn’t getting the props it deserves, I write it up in this space.
For two glorious seasons and 20 hilarious episodes, Party Down brought a jaded bit of humanity to the service industry. OK, I’m fawning – but the show is awesome!
Yeah, the show was not renewed for a third season after the 2010 season ended – they were easily able to survive the departure of Jane Lynch halfway though the series (she went to Glee… but I’m not going to complain about that show right now) as she was in a supporting roll, but Adam Scott’s new job on Parks & Recreation pretty much killed it. The show had an amazing cast in Scott and Lynch, who were joined by Ken Marino, Jennifer Coolidge, Megan Mullally, Ryan Hansen, Martin Starr and Lizzy Caplan. The fact that they were on Starz gave them the freedom to do or say pretty much anything, but it was really the combination of excellent performances and great writing that mad Party Down an instant favorite for me. The show was primarily written by John Enbom, Rob Thomas, Dan Etheridge, and Paul Rudd and directed by Fred Savage (yes, that Fred Savage) and Bryan Gordon.
The show revolves around Party Down Catering and the gigs they get. Each episode takes us on the job with the crew as they serve their client and the client’s guests in various areas in and around Los Angeles. This includes corporate events, private parties, weddings, birthdays and all sorts of celebrations featuring anybody you can possibly imagine: Young Republicans, Porno Stars, Hollywood Producers, Real Estate Scammers… you name it, Party Down has served them.
Are We Having Fun Yet?
Adam Scott plays Henry, an actor who’s given up on his dreams and returned to his old catering job and for all intents and purposes, the show’s star. While Henry acted for many years, he’s primarily remembered for a beer commercial campaign which was strung together with the catch phrase, “Are we having fun yet?” As the series starts, he does his best to pretend he’s not that guy to eventually embrace who he once was. The first time he says the line in character (above) is amazing – watch as he morphs into the character that says the line just before he actually says “Are we having fun yet?” Watch his face! It’s awesome! Later, he says the line in ironic situations, which is also pretty awesome.
Favorite Episode: “Steve Guttenberg’s Birthday”
Frankly, every episode of Party Down is great, but Holy Shit, “Steve Guttenberg’s Birthday is off the hiz-ookle or whatever. The script readings are awesome.
“Dude, I’m acting.” You’re damn right you are.
Party Down is available on Netflix and DVD. Stop reading this and start watching!