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The Latest From the Weird World of Florida's Man in Black, Charlie Carlson…
 by William Moriaty

 by Mike Smith

Illuminati.  Fnord.  23.
 by Dylan Jones

Punk's Roots
 by Terence Nuzum

Is This Sarcasm?... Jimmy Dean, James Dean .... Ratty .... Coincidence....Stamp of Approval....FEMA....Passing On....New Top 10 Challenge....Jaws: The Story, Part 35
 by Mike Smith

Nolan's Pop Culture Review, 2005!
    Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our sixth calendar year!
Number 288  (Vol. 6, No. 39). This edition is for the week of September 26--October 2, 2005.

A Calmer Atlantic, Blame-Throwing Continues

  • The Final Word on Abu Ghraib?
  • Don Adams (Maxwell Smart) Dies at 82
    • An Interview with Director Peter Riegert by Michael Smith
    • The Return of Terence Nuzum and Dylan Jones
  • Hurricane Rita and the Katrina Legacy
    Thankfully, the damage from Hurricane Rita was not quite as bad as everyone expected. The downgraded storm made an unexpected turn toward the less-populated areas near Port Arthur, Texas. But enough of the rain bands clobbered Louisianna that New Orleans, barely recovering from Hurricane Katrina, experienced several new levee breaches reflooding the poorest parts of New Orleans.

    Despite the better goverment response to Hurricane Rita, residents, starting to filter back into other, less decimated parts of New Orleans and parts of Mississippi, are still seeking answers to the questions regarding the originally sluggish FEMA response to Hurricane Katrina.

    Former FEMA head Michael "You're doing a heck of a job, Brownie!" Brown, fired from his post after public outcry, defended his actions during the crisis, saying he knew what he was doing and laid the blame for miscommunications entirely at the feet of the Mayor of New Orleans, Ray Nagin, and the Governor of Louisiana, Kathleen Blanco (both Democrats).

    "I knew what I was doing," said Brown during the recent testimony to a special congressional panel, "My biggest mistake was not recognizing by Saturday that Louisiana was dysfunctional. I very strongly personally regret that I was unable to persuade Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin to sit down, get over their differences, and work together. I just couldn't pull that off."

    This, predictably, drew scathing responses from the Mayor, the Governor, and also Representative William Jefferson (D-La) who was offended that the meeting started right off with Brown's seeming abdication of responsibility, then added later, "I think that's a very weak explanation of what happened, and a very incomplete explanation of what happened. I don't think that's going to cut it, really."

    My take on it rests slightly more in the middle than where I was originally. Although I would still love to somehow hold George W. totally accountable for that royal fiasco, and the appointing of former Arabian horse trainer Michael Brown to head FEMA was incredulous at best, I find that in light of the terrible communication breakdowns in Louisiana that have since come to light (Brown's carping nothwithstanding), they must share at least some of the blame. Yes, Dubya could've left the golf course a couple days early and done a little better than a token "fly-over" immediately after the storm, but the emergency response in New Orleans itself independently was found extremely wanting. (The chief of police and half the force has since resigned.)

    JEEZIS I hate to say this, but this all elevates Florida Governor Jeb Bush to near folk-hero status by comparison: the man got us through FOUR major hurricanes in the 2004 season and held the state together with no precedent on which to draw.

    To say nothing of what Guiliani went through on 9/11. Just putting it in perspective.

    Abu Ghraib Poster Girl, Lynndie England, Sentenced to 3 Years
    Lynndie England, the most recognizable of the nine low-ranking reservists charged in the scandal that severely damaged America's image in the Muslim world and tarnished the U.S. military at home and abroad has been sentenced to three years in prison. The jury of five Army officers needed about 90 minutes Tuesday to determine their sentence.

    England apologized and maintained that she was only trying to please her boyfriend Pvt. Charles Graner Jr. (also the father of her child), who she said took advantage of her love and trust while they were deployed in Iraq.

    Please her boyfriend?? In some of the pictures, England is shown holding a naked prisoner on a leash, posing with a pyramid of naked detainees and pointing at the genitals of a prisoner while a cigarette hangs from the corner of her mouth. Umm....so, Lynndie, you're saying you both got off on this?

    Even my staunchest right-wing, pro-Bush, pro-war associates choke hard defending this, usually saying something to the effect of "well, those guys are all wanting to kill us anyway!! What do we care if they're abused?" Of course we're supposed to care!! Geneva Convention and all that. I don't want to be confused with someone supporting the enemy, but this was a solid black eye on the United States.

    I'm actually shocked she didn't get more prison time, but (and this is the only "but" in her case) she was obviously made the scapegoat in a much larger war crime that involved equals and superiors that all turned evidence once the indictments began.

    TV's Maxwell Smart, Don Adams, Dies at 82
    Don Adams, the wry-voiced comedian who starred as the fumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart in the 1960s TV spoof of James Bond movies, "Get Smart," died of a lung infection late Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He was 82.

    The first time I remember hearing Don Adams voice was as the cartoon character Tenessee Tuxedo (at least I think that pre-dated "Get Smart"!), the pompous penguin who hung out with a walrus named "Chumley" and Professor Woopee. (My god that sounds weird now that I think about it.) It as one of those ingenious inventions of the '60s.

    "Get Smart", which debuted in 1965 was an obvious spoof of the insanely popular spy movies of the day, most notably the James Bond films that featured lots of gadgets. Among Maxwell Smart's regular arsenal was a pre-cellphone shoe phone.

    Maxwell Smart was the incredibly inept Agent 86 and worked for a super secret government agency called CONTROL and popularized several catch phrases such as "Sorry about that chief!" and "Would you believe...?" as ways of side-stepping confrontations with CONTROL's boss played with a straight-faced, deadpan delivery by Edward Platt.

    Smart's beautiful partner, Agent 99, played by Barbara Feldon, was as brainy as he was dense, and a plot romance led to marriage and the birth of twins later in the series.

    Dick Gautier played Hymie the robot late in the series run. He was a super innocent machine who constantly confused human slang, but usually saved the day (similar to "Data" on Star Trek: The Next Generation)

    After "Get Smart", Don Adams provided the cartoon voice of Inspector Gadget, then later played a supermarket manager in a short-lived syndicated comedy called "Check It Out". He returned to the role of Maxwell Smart in a 1980 feature film, "The Nude Bomb," about a madman whose bomb destroyed people's clothing. In 1995 the Fox network revived the series with Smart as chief and 99 as a congresswoman. It lasted seven episodes.

    Adams never had another showcase to display his comic talent. Born Donald James Yarmy in New York City on April 13, 1923, Don Adams was at the forefront of a special kind of comedy in a special generation we are losing quickly. He will be sorely misssed.

    The Peter Riegert InterviewCheck out Mike Smith's latest insider interview with Sopranos actor and director of "King of the Corner", Peter Riegert.

    The Peter Riegert Interview

    PCR Welcomes Back Terence Nuzum and Dylan "The Drow" Jones
    As you may have noticed we are hearing back from two past contributors to PCR this week, one particularly notable. Historically, Terence Nuzum has had a dramatic impact on this website, the direction of PCR, and my personal life. He has been responsible for some of the most well-written and insightful histories and music reviews ever published here as well as been responsible for some of our most controversial moments, a few extreme times even requiring damage control from yours truly. That's the kind of edge we live on around here.

    Terence has returned with a new column entitled The Audio Philes that starts with this week's issue. Check it out.

    Young'n Dylan Jones was one of the four in the "punk squad of 2004" that had run of the place for a while last year. His column ran three issues and stopped (OK, he got married, had a kid, yada, yada, whatever). After I discovered a webpage of his full of love poetry (sigh), I dared him to come back to PCR and use some of that wasted energy on a revitalized "The Drow" column. He said he'd been in a creative slump, but was thinking of writing again. A few hours later, I have a new "Drow"! Check it out.

    Happy Birthday Wishes go out to ye young controversial one, Ashley Lauren Lewis, who turns 21 years old October 2! Many happy returns. Now you can drink your very first beer! (snark snark)

    Please consider making a donation to help support Crazed Fanboy! Click on the "donate" link below and give whatever you can. I sincerely thank you for any and all consideration.---Nolan
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    "Mike's Rant" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith    "Matt's Rail" is ©2005 by Matthew Drinnenberg     "La Floridiana" is ©2005 by William Moriaty     "This Week's Movie Review" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith    "The Audio Philes" is ©2005 by Terence Nuzum    "Creature's Corner" is ©2005 by John Lewis    "Couch Potato Confessions" is ©2005 by Vinnie Blesi    "Oddservations" is ©2005 by Andy Lalino      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2005 by Nolan B. Canova    
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