Category Archives: Ersatz Celebrities

Roasting Guy Fieri: Parody Site Takes On Frosted-Tipped Flavor Explosion King

Oh, Guy Fieri. First, your restaurant gets one of the most scathing, vitriolic reviews in the history of restaurants in the New York Observer, citing his birth as “the beginning of a year when the world caught on fire” and then just getting more hateful from there. Then, the New York Times’ Pete Wells reviewed the restaurant in a series of the most deliciously snarky questions ever put together into a single review, including “Hey, did you try that blue drink, the one that glows like nuclear waste?” and “Is this how you roll in Flavor Town?”

Now, we learn that Guy Fieri has not parked the URL. We know that because of this completely awesome parody website/menu. Our favorite details might be the bidet that plays Smash Mouth or the picture of David Lee Roth stapled to a deep-fried snake, and really, you just need to read the whole brilliant thing.

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Liking the Art But Not What the Artist Did: Stereogum Reconciles Liking Chris Brown and Surfer Blood

There’s an interesting debate that Stereogum opened up on its site today — at face value, and based on the splashy photo, it looks like it’s going to be another “Chris Brown is bad” article, but it also brings up the domestic violence charges to which that Surfer Blood singer John Paul Pitts plead no contest — and the interesting question of when do we or do we not stick up for our favorite musicians and artists, even when they do loathsome things. Of course, the degree to which Chris Brown is awful, highlighted by one of The Onion’s finest moments in recent memory, overshadows what limited pop appeal he has, whereas the implication of the Stereogum article is while Pitts’ episode isn’t as egregious as Brown’s dubious rap sheet and accompanying bad-boy antics, Surfer Blood’s level of indie success is relatively low-watt.

(Where it gets interesting and gets to be a really tense, telling debate is where it got with Michael Jackson. First, he was an extremely rare artist in that he had extraordinary commercial and artistic success, crossing over globally like no one since the Beatles — or, perhaps, even more so, who was then accused of unspeakable crimes and succumbed to increasing aberrant behavior, and then died dramatically, creating a pandemic of mourning — and, as I’ll never forget, the first time I’d ever seen a single event wash over my Twitter feed into The Only Thing Everyone Was Talking About in a matter of minutes. Nothing had hit home before or since as to how connected music makes us and how technology allows us to do that, cutting across geography and caste and culture, in the moment.)

Also, Stereogum brings this up because the first glimpse of Surfer Blood’s new album, a catchy, off-kilter pop song with screaming and one-note piano worked into the hooky chorus, called “Weird Shapes,” just got released a few weeks ago. Stereogum calls it “Weezerly.” Even if it is, please, please never use that as an adjective in any scenario. The debate it opens up is perhaps too important to neglect or dismiss — even though the converge of Chris Brown and Surfer Blood news might be a slightly forced landscape in which to start it.

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Golden Globes: Passing Notes

Jennifer Lawrence might have won the night for saying, “I beat Meryl!” (Which is what we totally thought when she won.)

Stallone and the Governator actually were funny in their bit. (Though not Wiig and Farrell funny. But seriously.)

Anne Hathaway continues to be huggable.

How is Claire Danes four-for-four in Golden Globe Awards? And “My So-Called Life” to “Homeland” is quite a career arc.

Sasha Baron Cohen: Not funny, but funnier than the Russell Brand reboot of SBC.

Still, though, I love that there’s drinking at the Golden Globes. And Poehler canoodling and drinking with Clooney just there was genius.

Oscar Nominations! (Lincoln Poised to Win Everything)

Just going out on a limb here; Lincoln might win some awards. (Photo credit: Indiewire)

Early, early this morning (especially if you’re on the West Coast — the clock started at 5:38 and 30 seconds a.m.), the nominees for the 2013 Academy Awards were announced. Colloquially known as the Oscars, of course, you might want to rename them the Lincolns this year, and fit the little gold statues with top hats.

The Daniel Day-Lewis vehicle and 16th President biopic was given 12 nominations, and look to be shoo-ins in a number of categories. Is Bradley Cooper really challenging Mr. My Left Foot As An American Hero? Can Spielberg be stopped? Isn’t a Sally Field “You really like me” reset inevitable? And is Tony Kushner really not winning Best Adapted Screenplay?

Look for consolation prizes for non-Lincoln movies in the Best Actress (is the world ready for a Jennifer Lawrence acceptance speech?) and Best Original Screenplay (could Tarantino conceivably win this?) categories.

Also, in what could be awkward, host Seth McFarlane is the lyricist for a best song nominee (from Ted, no less), though it seems like Adele’s Bond theme vs. the inevitable Les Mis selection is what wins there.

Despite hating the everyone-gets-a-trophy nature of having 10 best picture nominations, we feel duty-bound to give you the list:

Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Miserables
Life of Pi
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Entertainment Weekly has a pretty clean, easy-to-read list of everything, whereas Gawker brings its typical Gawker snark.

And, if you couldn’t pull yourself out of bed early enough, here are the as-they-happened announcements you missed:

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And That’s Why KDOC Can’t Have Nice Things: A Live New Year’s Eve Broadcast Gone Horribly Wrong

TV history, being made. (Photo credit: Mediaite.)

At one time, L.A. independent TV station KDOC was owned by a group of investors who included Pat Boone. Its history is full of randomness, and its current lineup of shows includes “We the People with Gloria Allred,” “Dog the Bounty Hunter,” “Married … with Children,” “Law and Order: Criminal Intent,” and “South Park.” For this most recent New Year’s Eve, they decided to do a live broadcast, starring a random assortment of entertainers from the 1990s, with a production crew seemingly angling for new levels of amateurism.

The YouTube clip below is simply why the Internet had to be invented. The five-plus minutes below, as reported by Mediate, tweeted by Patton Oswalt, and lovingly circulated by fans of steaming hot spectacle, attempts to compress the awfulness of this broadcast into a single lowlight reel. (NSFW, unless you have headphones.)

(Update: YouTube video has been pulled, but the Mediaite link above should still be working.)

The cast of players include Jamie Kennedy (who has not aged particularly well, nor has he surpassed his career apex of Malibu’s Most Wanted), Bone Thugs-N-Harmony (who overseason their performance with all kinds of words you’re not allowed to say on TV), Shannon Elizabeth (Shannon Elizabeth!), Macy Gray (who is barely coherent in her attempts to guide the audience through the final ten minutes of the year), a woman in the audience who reads the teleprompter along with co-host Stu Stone, two delightfully saucy women who are inexplicably pulled up on stage to detail their resolutions for 2013 (“Get rid of all my haters”), and some dude who offers a 12-letter-bomb to punctuate his response to Stone’s innocent-yet-leading-to-trouble inquiry, “What’s your name?”

From the highlight reel’s initial burst of brilliance (in which Kennedy doesn’t know they’re on air and F-bombs his way through the confusion) to its glorious finale (a fight breaks out on stage behind the hosts attempting to say farewell, which Kennedy matter-of-factly notes with a mix of defeat, bewilderment, and acute awareness that this is about to become viral on the Internet), it’s a cornucopia of incompetence and faulty judgement. You’ll laugh. You’ll cringe. You’ll speculate on the employment future of everyone involved with the KDOC New Year’s Eve special.

The Royal Baby (Well, At Least, America’s Royal Baby)

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Who’s excited about the Kimye baby? The Kardashians! And their producers! Graphic credit: New York Daily News

You’ve heard, by now, that Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are having a baby. Kim is 12 weeks along, which means, with a gestation period of around 40 weeks, that we’ll only be inundated with updates about this storyline for another 28 weeks. Then there will be a birth around mid-summer, and then there will be a paparazzi scramble for first baby photos which may or may not involve dressing up like hospital staff, and it’s going to be such a beautiful celebration of the miracle of life.

Clearly, Kanye’s found the love he talked about not getting enough of in 2011’s “Monster” — as he noted in 2012’s “Clique,” “My girl a superstar all from a home movie,” which is, well, a rather doting, boyfriendy, euphemistic version of how Kim first entered public consciousness.

Given that Kanye is documenting the relationship in real-time as well as in his music — he delivered the “she’s having my baby” news during a New Year’s Eve performance of “Runaway” in Atlantic City, after all — 2013 should bring us some awesome stream-of-conscious, Kanye-talking-about-whatever’s-front-and-center-in-Kanye’s-mind rapping about 3 a.m. bottle feedings and diaper changes. (Question: Does Gucci make diapers?)

But, unfortunately for Kanye, Kim Kardashian brings with her the rest of the Kardashian Klan and the camera crew (kamera krew?) that is surgically attached to it, which might be a little too much spotlight for Mr. Hard to Be Humble When You’re Stuntin’ On a Jumbotron.

E! (of course, E!) has announced that it will be filming throughout the pregnancy. Us Weekly reports:

“Kim and Kanye are an incredibly dynamic couple, and their baby news is just so exciting,” network president Suzanne Kolb tells The Hollywood Reporter in a statement. “Like so many Kardashian fans, we love it when this close-knit family gets even bigger.”

(A Hollywood Reporter source hints that their infant will appear on camera, saying that the network “will continue to cover all aspects of Kim’s life as it always has.”)

And this New York Daily News article does an outstanding job of capturing the Kardashian Klan’s subtle, understated, taking-to-Twitter joy about the whole thing. (Special points to Kendall Jenner for trying to get Kimye to happen. Nothing will ever beat Brangelina as a celebrity couple name. Though it turns out Kimye is, upon a quick Googling, gaining a bit of traction. THIS CANNOT STAND.)

Also, Glamour’s already attempting to name the baby. (Limiting themselves to K names, of course.)

In-utero Twitter account? Side-by-side baby bump comparison photos of Kim and Kate Middleton as the royal pregnancies progress? Gossip mags clamoring to be the first to announce the gender once it becomes possible to do so? Look for this to reach new levels of amazing in the coming 28 (again, that’s 28) weeks.

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Hold Me; I’m Scared: Hulk Hogan, and Restaurant, Together.

Hulk and guest, at Hogan’s Beach Grand Opening, which was also a Masquerade Ball-themed New Year’s Eve party. (Of course it was.) (Photo credit: Eater.)

If you ever find yourself in Tampa, and find yourself craving dining options dreamt up by one of the most iconic pro wrestlers of our age, and you want to top off that experience by riding a mechanical shark, this is now a possibility for you.

New Year’s Eve allowed us to not only collectively say good-bye to an eventful year, but to say hello to Hogan’s Beach, an eating, drinking, and mechanical-shark-riding emporium building on the Hulk Hogan brand. (A brand resting on the not-at-all-shaky foundation of a pro wrestling career followed by a look-at-my-family reality show.)

Hulk boasted to the Tampa Bay Times, “It’s going to be Jimmy Buffett’s [Margaritaville] times 10; Hooters times 10.” While this brings up the potential horror of a TV commercial featuring Hulk bellowing, “Whatcha gonna do when overly-fried appetizers and servers with 36-Double-Ds run wild on you,” the vision for the restaurant’s food is not entirely awful. (Though this TV commercial does feature an in-form Hulk talking “party” and forwarding “30 years of bodyslamming opponents in the ring” as a prelude to being a successful restauranteur.)

The article notes that Culinary Institute of America-pedigreed chef Robert Uzzillia, hired as food and beverage director for the hotel and restaurant, created a trio of menus for Hogan’s Beach: “a 30-item sushi bar, a second indoor menu of upscale steaks and seafood, and a third, more casual menu for the patio of Frenchy’s-style Florida favorites.”

Still, though, there are volleyball courts, tiki huts, fire pits, and the aforementioned mechanical shark, leading to chuckling speculation about the Hogan’s Beach dining experience.

The Huffington Post, in its coverage of the announcement, sought to expand the wider circulation of the pejorative term “breastaurant,” which I am all for (and hence am dutifully doing my part).

Other local sources in the know, including the Broward Palm Beach New Times and Eater, couldn’t quite surpress their giggles in detailing the restaurant’s offerings; Eater noted that the Twittersphere contributed wrestling-and-food puns of the “Leg Drop Soup” and “Whatcha Gonna Stew” variety. The Internets have not yet revealed a menu or even a Yelp review, but please God, make “Whatcha Gonna Stew” happen in my lifetime.

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