The Penguins of Madagascar
I did see one and a half Madagascar movies but I never really liked them. It felt like they weren’t written for me and also they had David Schwimmer in them. However, those movies did produce a pretty enjoyable spin-off tv show starring the penguins. The show was surprisingly funny which was a bit of a surprise for a spin-off of something I didn’t really like in the first place. Anyway, the movie is pretty wacky and ends up being non-stop action. However, there’s a lot of clever humor and ballsy puns thrown in that make the movie pretty enjoyable. I’m a little sorry they didn’t get the voice actors from the show but it’s worth a look if you’re looking for something to watch.
Contemporary Arts Theater Festival
This is my first year attending shows at the Contemporary Arts Theater Festival which is held at Shepherd University. So far I attended two shows and they were both really good.
The first show was We Are Pussy Riot which was definitely an eye opener. I am definitely guilty of following the news of Pussy Riot extremely loosely and then giving up on the story when they showed up on Colbert. The show was really informative about what exactly I was missing from the story. The acting was excellent and you really got a feel for what the Russian justice system must be like. Sometimes the show was funny and sometimes it was sad but it was always horrifying. It reminded me that we cannot be complacent in our society.
The other show was The Whole Catastrophe which was more Neil Simon-like about a linguist/confirmed bachelor who gets tapped to be a live-in marriage counselor. It was a very funny and thoughtful piece about love, communication and the mistakes we make. It had a lot to say about suburban life, family, academia and pop psychology. One surreal thing about this show was that it shared a few actors with We Are Pussy Riot in completely different roles.
I would reccomend seeing both of these and probably any of the other shows. There’s still a few days left in the festival so if you’re in the area, check it out.
Radio Dead Air
I love the radio. I used to listen to it a lot more before Youtube and podcasts took over the time I spent in the car listening to the radio. I always loved hearing the music. Whether it was old favorites or stuff completely new to me, I loved getting lost in it. However, it was also about the friendly DJ or hosts chatting away. There’s something about the conversations that come out of somebody just sitting down and talking that I always liked. Radio Dead Air is a live internet show from 9 to 2 am every Monday night.
The host, Nash, plays whatever he feels like playing and also plays requests from viewers. He talks a lot about whatever’s going on in his life or in the news. It also includes a live show called What the Fuck is Wrong With You? that is co-hosted by Tara Deenihan where they riff on the news of the weird from the past week. It’s a really calming show to listen to and Nash is dedicated to making every show really good. It’s worth a listen and a watch, even if you just put it on in the background and listen to someone else’s taste in music for a change. This past Monday he even had his 15 year anniversary of doing the show.
I had actually meant to watch this show a long while ago as my youngest brother went to Stanford just like the main character. The show is kind of dorky but it’s enjoyable enough. Chuck is a big box store employee who gets all of United States intelligence’s secrets beamed into his head. Because he is now the only source for these secrets, he is employed as an asset for the CIA and NSA. Zachary Levi is pretty good as Chuck and he often reacts as I would if I were suddenly a secret agent. However, he mugs a lot which hopefully they cut down on. Yvonne Strahvoski is great as his CIA handler as she kicks a lot of butt while being charming and insightful. Adam Baldwin is great as Chuck’s NSA bodyguard because at this point he was used to playing amusing jerks. The rest of the supporting cast is kind of annoying but hopefully that fades with time. Overall, four episodes in, it’s pretty rocky but a pretty interesting show. I don’t know if I’ll continue to watch it.