By now, everyone in the world has heard about the opening skit this past Monday on ABC's "Monday Night Football." In a nutshell, while waiting in the locker room for the game to begin, Philadelphia Eagles' receiver Terrell Owens is visited by actress Nicolette Sheridan, star of ABC's "Desperate Housewives," who is clad only in a towel. After some witty banter, Sheridan drops her towel to encourage Owens to skip the game. After he agrees, she leaps into his arms. The end. Or so you would think. The next day, anybody without a sense of humor was apparently outraged by the skit. Both ABC and the NFL apologized. For what?? For showing a woman's bare back? Then Michael "my dad got me my job" Powell, head of the FCC, put his two cents in, intimating that he may have to give ABC a hefty fine to pay because of the "implied" nudity. WHAT?? You see much more then a bare back on afternoon soaps. Hell, you see more then that in shampoo commercials. And, as for it not being "appropriate" for a family audience, do you think it's appropriate for the cameras to linger on the bouncing breasts of the cheerleaders? Hell, is it appropriate for the NFL to allow commercials featuring scantily clad women tearing off each other's clothing in a fight over which beer is better? Or how about those commercials that tell you if you take their pill it will make your penis bigger? Is that suitable for a family audience? Oh, I forgot. Those are PAID sponsors. They give money so it's ok. In the back of my mind, I kept waiting for someone to pull out the race card. I was shocked that it was former Bucs and current Colts coach Tony Dungy. Dungy claims the skit went straight to racial stereotyping, i.e. the black man easily seduced by the pretty, blonde white woman. Then he brought up Kobe Bryant. WHAT, AGAIN?? Unless I missed something, TO wasn't bending Sheridan over a chair trying to pop her in the ass. When Matt and I were in Europe more then 20 years ago, we would walk down the street of the local villages and think nothing of seeing advertising for sun tan lotion featuring topless women. What is it about this country that makes people go crazy at the slightest hint of sex? Last week I mentioned the brutal, unnecessary censorship that goes on when films are shown on TV. Now we have to worry about being exposed to "implied" nudity. Unless of course we're paying the bills.
LIVE AID IS HERE
As noted several times over the past year, the historic LiveAid concert of 1985 has finally been released on DVD. I knew that the Led Zeppelin set would not be included due to legal hassles (though, if I remember correctly, Plant was not in great form vocally that night), but I was shocked to find that other performers, like Rick Springfield, were not included. Then I read the little booklet that came inside. When the event was held, organizer Bob Geldof assured the performers that there would be no album/video of the concert made available to the public. He also told MTV and the BBC that they should destroy their footage after the show was over. Well, the BBC did. MTV put there's on a shelf where it sat for almost 20 years. Unfortunately, some of the performances, like Springfield's, were lost. In watching the concert again, I was once again struck with the regret that I never saw Queen in concert. Their set was incredible, with the highlight being "Radio GaGa," which saw Freddy Mercury leading 80,000 fans in what almost appears to be a choreographed routine. Simply outstanding. Anyway, I highly recommend it. And I'll just have to content myself with my video tapes made 20 years ago if I want to hear "Love Somebody" or "Stairway to Heaven."
LOVE THOSE BURGERS
Back in what we now refer to as the good old days, Matt and I would spend many a night roaming Tampa and St. Pete, either doing a little fishing or just sitting by the water and playing guitar. But we always made a point to end the night with a stop at the Krystals on the corner of Kennedy and Dale Mabry. We'd peruse the next day's Tampa Tribune and gobble down those little burgers. This past week, Krystal sponsored it's first Hamburger Eating Contest in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The winner ate 69 burgers at his sitting and received a cool $10,000. I'd like to think Matt and I could have beaten him.
Harry Lampert, an illustrator for DC Comics who is credited with creating "The Flash," passed away last Saturday. He was 88. Lampert began his career at the age of 16, inking such cartoon characters as Popeye, Betty Boop and KoKo the Clown for the Fleischer Studios in New York. After leaving DC he published a popular series of instructional books on bridge.
Dayton Allen, popular comedian and actor who played Phineas T. Bluster on "The Howdy Doody Show," died last week at the age of 85. After the "Doody" show left the air, he became the voice of cartoon Deputy Dawg. He later voiced the cartoon magpies Heckle and Jeckle. He was a regular on "The Steve Allen Show," often appearing in the "Man on the Street" interviews.
10 OF 500
This week, Rolling Stone magazine published it's list of the "500 Greatest Songs of All Time."
Their top 10:
- "Like a Rolling Stone" - Bob Dylan
- "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" - The Rolling Stones
- "Imagine" - John Lennon
- "What's Going On" - Marvin Gaye
- "Respect" - Aretha Franklin
- "Good Vibrations" - The Beach Boys
- "Johnny B. Goode" - Chuck Berry
- "Hey Jude" - The Beatles
- "Smells Like Teen Spirit" - Nirvana
- "What'd I Say" - Ray Charles
The top 20 includes 11 songs from the 60's, four by the Beatles. Speaking of..............
MEET THE BEATLES - PART 43
November 23, 1965. The boys invent MTV! Tired of doing multiple television appearances every time a new single is released, the band decide to self-produce and video tape their own promotional clips and distribute them to TV stations around the world. In a two day period, lip synching in front of two black and white video cameras, the Beatles did ten clips:
"We Can Work It Out," three versions
"Day Tripper," three versions
"Help!" - one version
"Ticket to Ride," one version
"I Feel Fine," two versions.
Multiple versions were done so that different stations, being sold whichever version they took, could claim an exclusive Beatles performance. Later, some of the tapes were transferred to 16mm film for distribution.
Well, that's it for now. Have a great week. See ya!
"Mike's Rant" is ©2004 by Michael A. Smith. Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.