Archive for the Mike category


I Love It Love It

Commercials, Mike No Comment

I may have jumped the gun with my look at the Red Stripe commercials. The new ones from Cold Stone Creamery might just be better. I think they may be from the same people that did the Emerald Nuts ads. They have the same eerie feel to them, the graphics are similar, and the web site is solid. The plots make a little more sense than the Emerald Nuts ones. In the sense that the fears of each person make sense. The fact that broccoli is in a Cold Stone might be a reach.

The idea is that the main character approaches a Cold Stone Creamery. Inside are four arch nemeses (I had to look up the plural of nemesis). The character wants his or her favorite creation but they have to face what they fear most inside of the store. I mentioned the broccoli, which was one of the fears of the Kid. He had the other standard kid fears: Boogey Man, Monster Under the Bed, and the Monster in the Closet. The commercial ends with ‘Do you love it or do you love it love it? This is a play on the sizes at Cold Stone: Like It, Love It, and Gotta Have It. On their web page they explain the sizes as Like It: tennis ball, Love It: baseball, Gotta Have It: Softball.

The site lets you see the current commercials. There are bios about each of the main characters. The bios contain even more information about the main characters. Makes me hope there may be a variety of spots for each character.

Make sure you check out the outtakes. By far my favorite is the Bigfoot Tracker. He loves to lose things, so he can track them down. The Monster Under the Bed is pretty entertaining as well.

On the site if you view the you can click on the balled up paper in the corner and you can submit your own story. I’m not sure if you get anything if your story gets picked. Still, I love the idea that they are asking for more suggestions. It leads me to believe there will be a lot more and they could have a ton of variety.

I should mention that I’ve only been to Cold Stone twice. It opened at school a few years ago. However, my school is known for its Ice Cream on campus. The fact that an outsider showed up trying to sell ice cream was unheard of. I refused to go for the first year or so. I had a coupon for a free one, so I figured I’d stick it to them by not paying them anything. The special that month was Cotton Candy. The creation had marshmallows. It was unbelievable. One opened recently near where I live, so I will be going more often, especially thanks to these great ads.

So far Bigfoot is the only one I’ve seen on TV. I am looking forward to a ton more of these. With new characters or a new variety of the current characters. They will reach greatness if they feature some of the nemeses as the main characters. What is the Boogey Man afraid of??

Go to the site for the ad campaign.


This Week on TV

Mike, TV No Comment

This week the Stanley Cup Finals are wrapping up (unless it goes 7), the NBA Finals are getting started. There is no horse going for the Triple Crown but I’ll still be looking forward to the race. French Open finals are also coming up on the weekend.

Besides sports there isn’t much to look forward to until Sunday with the Sopranos finale and John From Cincinnati premiere. Plus, Brian Regan has a Comedy Central Special.


Belmont Stakes (5, ABC) – No one going for the Triple Crown this year. Still, I’m hooked on this horse racing thing. Just watching, I’m not at the point of betting on it. You can make picks for fun at Ice Cream Helmet.

Stanley Cup Finals
Ducks vs Senators
Game 4 @ Ottawa: Monday (8, NBC)
Game 5 @ Anaheim: Wednesday (8, NBC)
Game 6 @ Ottawa: Saturday (8, NBC)

NBA Finals
Spurs vs Cavaliers
Game 1 @ San Antonio: Thursday (9, ABC)
Game 2 @ San Antonio: Sunday (9, ABC)

French Open
Women’s Final: Saturday (9am, NBC)
Men’s Final: Sunday (9am, NBC)

Check out the week … (more…)


Summer Music: 1st Generation

Mike, Music No Comment

The past few weeks I’ve found the music I listen to has shifted. I had been listening to more screamo and indie-type rock (my best way to describe Say Anything and The Hold Steady). I started listening to music a little more pop and a lot more fun. Its summer time and I didn’t even realize that I change my listening habits when summer comes around. It also seems like a lot of bands that I like or am starting to like are releasing new albums around this time.

It started by going back to some albums that I hadn’t listened to a whole lot recently. Once I gave them a listen I started to grab for them more often out of the CD case. Now they are in a solid rotation with all the stuff I’ve just bought recently. They bring me back to when I first got them, which for most of them was some point in college.

It doesn’t seem like I’ve been listening to all these groups for a few years now. It seems like yesterday when I first heard them. They all date back to high school and early on in college. I don’t even know what I listened to before all this besides Weezer and Green Day. Well, I guess you can’t forget Hootie & the Blowfish. Cracked Rear View is a masterpiece.

Here is what I’d call my first generation. Each band I have a pick of a song that is a quality summer tune. You can’t go wrong driving around all summer with these bands.



Part of the Show: Thank God You’re Here

Mike, TV No Comment

Thank God You’re Here started on NBC a few months ago. I was intrigued because I love improv/sketch comedy. They were going to have on some moderate celebrities. The idea was that a celebrity would be dressed in some sort of attire related to the skit they were about to do. They knew nothing about it. They would be sent through a door with the show’s cast prepared with a story. During the sketch the cast would set up the celebrities for jokes. The average performers only got creative when prompted by these queues. The solid performers would take over the scene, not waiting for their turn. It was surprising how few of them actually took control.

David Alan Grier is the host. I usually enjoy him. Dave Foley is the judge. I don’t mind Dave Foley, but was a judge needed? He was nice even when somebody was terrible. He apparently picked who was the best on the show and gave him or her a trophy.

I watched a the first few shows but it was nothing that I was going to watch during primetime. There are too many other options. I tried to DVR it, but I never had a desire to watch it. It would just sit there in my recorded list until I realized I was never going to watch it.

I do think the show could be a lot more successful. It should be on some cable channel at various times during the day. If I just caught it randomly during the day I’d be more likely to watch it. Each skit should be put on YouTube. Then have people vote on the best ones and direct people to the better ones. It may even be better to start online. Instead of a celebrity doing one scene have them do a couple when they come in. Make the TV show the best of these skits as voted online.

I do have the desire to try it out, to play the role of the celebrity. I think there are a lot of people that would enjoy this. Now its not good for TV, nobody cares what I do. I just think it would be a lot of fun. The cast is there to help me out a bit, if it turns out I’m terrible. If I was decent I’d want video of it to watch again and show people.

One issue I can see is that an audience is needed. The performance really plays off the crowd if its any good. How do you get an audience to see people they don’t have any relation to who might not be very good?

One way to do this is to have a tour. This could work going across the country taking people from the crowd. The cast would know how to play to the crowd, making it entertaining for everyone. A huge bonus is that when the cast realize that the crowd member is terrible they can just switch to making fun of this volunteer. Great fun. If popular enough it could stay in one place, be sort of a weekly/monthly event at a theater.

With the tour you have to get lucky in the crowd to get up on stage. There needs to be some way to be sure you’re going to get a shot. Perhaps pay a little extra. This removes the getting made fun of aspect, since you don’t want to pay to get made fun of. If you’re paying its likely you’re a little better than the average crowd member.

Either way this sounds like an entertaining idea. Really, for me, I just want to do some sort of improv. There must be a place where random people off the street can do improv.


This Week on TV

Mike, TV No Comment

To save myself from Summer TV withdraw I’ve decided to plan my week’s in advance. I’m going to do some research to make sure I don’t miss any specials that tend to sneak by in the Summer. Oh, and Sports.

This week will be especially difficult with all the talk shows on break.


Stanley Cup Finals: Monday (Versus), Wednesday (Versus), Saturday (NBC)

French Open: ESPN2 and The Tennis Channel – Comcast is giving us The Tennis Channel for free for this. Trying to tempt me into purchasing the Sports Package. Little do they know I’m planning on getting it when the college football season starts. That is, if I can hold old during the college baseball regionals.

Now that the important stuff is out of the way, check out the whole week … (more…)


Boo Most Commercials, Hooray Some!

Commercials, Mike No Comment

I’m no fan of commercials. The #1 reason for purchasing a ReplayTV all those years ago was to easily record things so I could skip the commercials. Turned out the real beauty of DVRs is not being tied to the TV schedule, but that’s off topic.

Still, I’m always intrigued by good commercials. Its just they are so few and far between. Even less often is there a campaign that I just love. I discovered a new one this week. Off the top of my head here are two of my favorite ad campaigns ever, plus a new favorite that I think has a ton of potential.

I don’t even need to really talk about these. There have been so many classics over the years. Even now they will still bust out a solid one. I loved the one with Jorge Posada and David Ortiz where Ortiz puts on the Yankees hat (even though it may have been against the rules).

EPSN Commercial Archive

Emerald Nuts
These were just off the wall when they first came out. It was during the 2004 World Series. This is pre-Goulet, those debuted during the 2007 Super Bowl. There were a bunch of them so you didn’t get tired of any and they were available online so I could show people I wasn’t insane.

From the first set: Encouraging Norwegians (also includes Evil Navigators). If I remember correctly, Egomaniacal Normans was my favorite of this group, but I couldn’t find a video.

Then the came back with the really long phrases that spelled out Emerald Nuts.
My favorite from this group: Engrossed Manicurists Eventually Relay Advice Like Do Not Untie That String

Red Stripe
Finally caught these this week during PTI. First I saw the Sweater one and was impressed. What put me over the top was the evil room. I found some of the others online and this campaign only has the ceiling of the number of places Red Stripe is advertised, which I’ve only ever seen during PTI. This one is good enough to be on everywhere.

iFilm page of Red Stripe Commercials

See some that I’ve mentioned after the jump. (more…)


A PI and a Vampire?

Mike, TV No Comment

CBS announced a new show for the fall called Moonlight. Its about a Private Investigator who is also a Vampire. I’m not sure which came first or if one led to the other. It would make sense if he was on the case of a vampire and got bit. Then even though he’s now a vampire he still wants to continue his PI career.

Why is this a show? What makes the PI/Vampire combination so intriguing? Does being a vampire help his investigating? I can’t imagine its easy not being able to go out in the light. The only suggestions I’ve heard so far are that maybe he can become a bat and sneak around, he may have a heightened sense of hearing, or that he can smell blood and find the bodies.

Some plot points I found on TV Squad: “The story will revolve around his struggles with immortality, feuds with adversaries in the vampire world, and a romance with a mortal.” I’m most curious about the feuding with other vampires. Maybe he’s investigating other vampires, making him an outcast in the vampire community. Come to think of it, I’d be interested to see how vampires interact day to day. You only think of them doing bad things, biting people, and on occasion, selling cereal. I want to see how they get their shopping done or send their kids to school if they can’t go out in daylight.

I’d talk about the cast but the only person I know (after looking him up) is Rade Serbedzija. He played Dmitri Gredenko on 24 this season and was Boris in Snatch. Most importantly he was the guy in Bratislava in Eurotrip (“Miami Wice is number one new show.”).

It will be on Fridays at 9. You will want to catch it quickly since who knows how long it will be around. I’ll be watching, cause at this point I just have to find out what’s going on.


My DVR loves Andy Barker, P.I.

Mike, TV No Comment

A week or two ago I had my DVR all set to tape NBC’s Thursday night lineup. I’ve finally gone all in for the comedies after catching a 30 Rock promo I decided to give it another chance. So on this particular night it was some combination of My Name Is Earl, The Office, 30 Rock, Scrubs, and Andy Barker, P.I. They seem to change it every week. I wonder why they are 3rd in the ratings. My lineup of choice for the night would be: The Office, Scrubs, My Name Is Earl, 30 Rock. Actually it can be any order, as long as The Office is up first.

I’ve been DVRing Andy Barker, P.I. since it started. I try to give new comedies at least one shot and anything Andy Richter is guaranteed a chance. This night my DVR must have really liked the episode. It taped it for eight hours. It was still recording it when I got up in the morning and I told it to stop. Who knows how long it would have gone on without my intervention. My recordings list had it split into three parts. It was interrupted for some reason, twice. The DVR held strong and started right back up. Sadly the episode was only a half hour long. The extra seven plus were just there to make sure whatever I had been keeping around to watch on a rainy day was lost. That probably included some random movies from HBO or Starz and a couple of the Planet Earth episodes from Discovery.

I’ve enjoyed Andy Barker, not quite as much as Andy Richter Controls the Universe, but still worth watching. I don’t expect it to get renewed. I get a very similar feeling from both Andy Barker and Knights of Prosperity. Both have odd premises. They both have the ability to be hysterically funny. Which isn’t a surprise since Andy Barker comes from Conan’s crew and Knights of Prosperity comes from Ed (which came from Letterman’s crew). With each I feel like something is missing.

I had the thought that these two should have been combined. Andy could have been Mick Jagger’s Private Investigator who tracked what the Knights of Prosperity were up to. I think that would have provided enough material to fill in the down periods in both shows.

I’m just trying to figure out why the DVR enjoyed it so much. I didn’t notice anything DVR references in the show that it might have liked. I’ll have to keep an eye out for its future habits. Maybe I’ll record something just for it every once in a while.


Everywhere I go I keep her picture in my wallet

Mike No Comment

Gym Class Heroes’ Cupid’s Chokehold, their ‘new’ song, is getting pretty popular. I say ‘new’ because I first heard this song three years ago. I like it and I’m glad that they are getting attention, they just should have gotten in when the song first came out.

The song features Patrick Stump from Fall Out Boy. It was on their last CD and they also added it when the re-released their latest CD. It works better on the CD it was originally on because in Cupid’s Chokehold there is a reference to the last song, which comes a few tracks earlier and is called Make Out Club, it is essentially a list of all the women he’s been with.

One problem that I noticed when listening but never really took the time to think about … what is he talking about? He goes on and on about his girlfriend but then the chorus talks about how she’s not much of a girlfriend. After watching the video it all makes sense. Actually I still don’t think the lyrics work, but the video explains what they were going for. The chorus is talking about his old girlfriend and everything else is about how great the new girl is. The old one must have just been one of the girls from Make Out Club.

Interesting thing I found about the chorus when looking around: Its the chorus from Supertramp’s Breakfast In America.

The first song that I started hearing on the radio was New Friend Request. A song about meeting someone on MySpace.

They are really creative and catchy, even corny at times. But if you get corny right, then I’m going to be a big fan and they get it right.

Cupid’s Chokehold

Make Out Club

If you aren’t aware, Fueled By Ramen is my favorite label. Their bands: The Academy Is …, Cobra Starship, Cute is What We Aim For, Gym Class Heroes, Less Than Jake, Panic! At The Disco, Paramore, Punchline, and others that I haven’t listened to but I’m sure I’d like. Oh, and Jimmy Eat World and Yellowcard used to be on the label.


One $hining Moment

Mike No Comment

Pretty soon the Previously on 24 clips are going to make up half the show.

At Best Buy today the hot item was Guitar Hero II for Xbox 360. I’m very tempted. Very tempted.

While I think its ridiculous that CBS is only putting One Shining Moment in iTunes for $1.99 its really cool that they have them all going back to 1987. Still, these should all be free on their site.

Take Me Out to the Twins Game
I really like The Hold Steady but I’m not sure how I feel about this. I think the Twins are going to play this at their games. I really like the changes in there for the Twins. I don’t think I’ve ever heard someone try and do anything different with Take Me Out to the Ballgame, so the attempt in itself is pretty cool.


You will soon be involved in many gatherings and parties.

Life, Mike No Comment

That was the fortune in my Fortune Cookie today. I’ve never heard any superstitions about fortune cookies but people must have some. If they don’t, they should. Here are some possible superstitions you could have about your fortune.

1. You must finish your meal before opening the Fortune Cookie.
Here you would have to define what finishing actually is. Its Chinese food so finished would have to be for that particular meal. There are always leftovers.

2. You cannot share your fortune.
Is it like a birthday wish? If you share it won’t come true. It seems like fortunes are always shared and discussed. Its the most enjoyable part of the Fortune Cookie.

3. You must eat the entire Fortune Cookie. Except of course for the fortune.
I don’t think I’ve ever eaten the cookie. However, I think this is the most logical superstition of the bunch.

For today I finished my food, by writing this I’m sharing, and I did not eat the cookie. I still hope that I will soon be involved in many gatherings and parties.