Friday, May 26, 2006

X-Men 3

I just got back from X-Men 3. Overall, I liked the movie as much as the others, but it feels rushed in parts. Especially, the ending. This is supposed to be the last movie in the trilogy, but the ending leaves you wondering if Twentieth Century Fox might have something else in mind.

This time around, the personal storylines are all but eliminated. This story is more about mutants struggling for their mere existence. Without giving too much away, at the beginning of the movie we learn a pharmaceutical company has created an injection that will "cure" the mutants by suppressing the mutant genes.

The government claims it doesn't intend to force mutants to take the injection, but Magneto and the other mutants see the writing on the wall, and Magneto decides to put a stop to it all. He starts bombing clinics where injections are given, and appears on TV like Osama Bin Laden saying the attacks will continue as long as mutants are treated like they are diseased. Once again the mutants from Xavier's school realize that Magneto will stop at nothing to get what he wants, so they step in to protect the humans from Magneto's assault. I found myself hoping Magneto would prevail.

There are quite a few new mutants in this one, but like the Batman movies, more mutants doesn't add up to a better movie. Kelsey Grammer plays Beast and I wish they had spent more time with him. Another new mutant with angel wings pops up at the beginning of the movie and makes appearances here and there but never really becomes an integral part of the story. (It is his "disease" that motivates his father's company to search for a cure.) I'm not even sure they mention his name. A new mutant named Juggernaut provides some comic relief.

Most surprisingly, a few of the main mutants are killed in this one, so be prepared! Others are injected.

Despite it's problems, the movie is a fast-paced summer thrill ride, and it fits in well with it's two predecessors.

UPDATE: It appears that if you stay through the closing credits, there is extra footage. Apparently, one of the X-Men who was thought dead is not. Unfortunately, I missed it.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I consider myself an environmentalist. I'm not necessarily a good environmentalist--I rarely recycle, I don't drive a green car, I probably contribute as much trash to the landfill as anyone else--but I was raised in a rural area and I developed an appreciation for nature at an early age. Blame the Boyscouts of America for all those camping trips I went on.

I just ran across a verified true story on Snopes that is really sickening. Basically, a multinational company is wanting to drill in an area of Chile where a glacier now sits for a large deposit of gold. It will devestate the environment there, line the pockets of the shareholders who couldn't care less about the people of Chile, and leave the local people with a bunch of contaminated lakes and streams. Here is a link to the Pascua-Lama story.

The history of mining is littered with stories of contamination. Here in the Tulsa area a few years ago, the Tar Creek Superfund site was born. It brought a lot of heavy minerals like lead and zinc to the surface. It is now causing health problems for the people that live in the area, especially the children who are more susceptible to the metals. The site has been shutdown for years, but it wasn't cleaned up. The people of the area have been petitioning the government for years to buy them out so they can relocate to safer environments. It's looking like they will finally get their wish.

The people of Pascua-Lama will not be so lucky if Barrick Gold has it's way. And it will be hard for them to put up a legal/political fight against a conglomerate with deep pockets.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Highest Radiation Cell Phones

Over at c|net, they list the current 10 highest radiation cell phones, and Motorola has the top 8 slots. Nice! Especially since I own a Motorola cell phone. Luckily, my phone (V180) was not one of the 8, but it makes me not want to buy Motorola again.

Radiation List

More Rants About Network Television

Last night CBS showed the 2-hour finale of The Amazing Race...and guess what? It overlapped with Lost on ABC, so my TiVo didn't record any of The Amazing Race.

I can't believe CBS would be stupid enough to pit their show against Lost, which obviously stomps it in the ratings.

Furthermore, I went to the CBS website to see if I could watch the last episode on their website, now that they let you do that...and the bastards put the winning team on the video download page, as well as the Amazing Race page.

So much for keeping it a mystery.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

How to Ensure Your TV Show Will Get Canceled

1. Sign on with ABC. They rarely give poorly-performing shows time to find an audience. If it doesn't get great ratings the first episode or two, it'll be pulled. Emilys Reasons Why Not is a perfect example. The show could have been the next Sex in the City, but it got pulled after the first episode.

2. Move the show to a different night. Here's my theory: Once a show has an audience on a given night, if you move the show, you will lose some of them. It's unlikely 100% of your viewers will tune in to the new night. And, it's unlikely you'll get new viewers, because once a show gets started, the new viewer will not be able to follow it (unless each episode is self-contained and doesn't spill over into other episodes).

3. Have long periods of reruns before showing new episodes. Commander in Chief (again on ABC) had this problem. So has Desparate Housewives and Lost. Guess what, Desparate Housewives has lost a lot of viewers this season. Lost better watch out.

What is Wrong With ABC?

Recently, I learned ABC had given Commander in Chief the axe. This was very upsetting to me, as it is easily the best drama on TV. But what is even more upsetting, is that it was doing great in the ratings on Tuesday nights before they moved it. When they moved it to Thursday against stiff competition from CBS and NBC, it just couldn't keep it's viewers. Oh, and it was in repeats for weeks before the move, so people lost interest, too.

This morning I read ABC is moving Grey's Anatomy from Sunday nights--where it gets great ratings following Desparate Housewives--to Thursday nights, pitting it against CSI. I'm sure it will tank, as well.

ABC did something similar with Alias. They moved it, and then decided not to renew it.

I'm wondering if in the history of television any show has ever been successfully relocated to a different day?

I wish network television would play their flagship shows two nights a week, similar to what HBO does. That way, you're more likely to catch it, and therefore the ratings should stay up if the show is any good. I think they tried that with Lost and Desparate Housewives, and guess what, those show have not been cancelled. Hmn...

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Lack of Posts

Sorry for the lack of entertaining anecdotes for you to read.

I haven't been myself these last couple of weeks. During that time, I've been sick twice, and though I don't have fever or chills right now, I still feel like crap. I've had a headache all day, but I haven't had any caffeine, either. I'm hoping the lack of stimulants is the cause and not something more exotic like meningitus or bird flu.

I think I might have some kind of inner ear infection, because one of my ears feels like it has a cotton ball stuck in it and my equilibrium seems to be affected. Last night I went out for a couple of margaritas for Cinco de Mayo with some friends, and I left the restaurant early because I started to feel worse the longer I was there. The margaritas didn't help. :)

I had all these plans to work on my flowerbed this weekend, but it essentially rained all day. Even if the sun had been shining, I would not have felt up to it. Instead I spent most of the day on the couch watching forensic shows and a couple of movies (Red Eye and Crash--both are excellent).

Hopefully, I'll be better by tomorrow or Monday.