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Nolan's Pop Culture Review 2007!
Established A.D. 2000, March 19. Now in our eighth calendar year!
Number 377  (Vol. 8, No. 24). This edition is for the week of June 11--17, 2007.

Barring Further Catastrophe...

The Tampa Film Review for June
by Nolan B. Canova and Terence Nuzum

by Mike Smith

"Ocean's 13"

by Andy Lalino

Comics & Critters Too - Largo's Newest Comic Book Store - Grand Opening Weekend

by John Lewis

When It Rains, It Pours

by Mike Smith

Everything Just Goes Black .... Danger, Bruce Banner .... Where's Helen Slater? .... Whatever Happened To --? Chapter 22: Warren Beatty

Plus...The Passing of Don Herbert (Mr. Wizard)

Sigh. If I had a nickel for every time I prefaced something I was about to say with "barring further catastrophe...", I'd be the proverbial rich man.

As regular readers will recall, last week I announced that Crazed Fanboy.com had switched web hosts and that the move appeared to be complete and without serious incident. Well, that part is still pretty much true.

The site hadn't been up for quite a week yet, when Monday morning, it suddenly became inaccessible. At least 90% of the time, web browsers were timing out. (Ironically, this was one of the many reasons I left the old host.) Panicky calls to tech support were placed. The answer was, "Your server's been DOS'd." Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the trusty server we just moved to (along with three others) had been the victim of a Denial Of Service attack by malicious spammers that overwhelmed system resources. Several hours of relentless filtering by the tech people and one new IP address later and we were back online. Well, pretty much. Some hours the site seems slower and other times it's like lightning.

I apologize in advance for any inconvenience this causes while viewing the website (mostly pages that take forever to load) as this is obviously going to go back and forth for a while. The Message Board is particularly sensitive to "brown-outs" in that it uses a database it must access in order to function. The non-interactive parts of the website use regular HTML pages which aren't as cumbersome to the server.

OK, enough tech-talk, you get the idea. I'm explaining all this by way of excuse as to why some things will, once again, run a little behind this week, such as the promised It Came From The PO Box. It's coming. Again, apologies.

Don Herbert, TV's "Mr. Wizard" Dead at 89
I wasn't quite old enough to enjoy the early "Mr. Wizard" programs in the '50s, but I never missed an episode of it when it came to cable TV's Nickelodeon in the '80s and '90s.

Don Herbert, the avuncular, then grandfatherly mastermind/host of the series has just died at the age of 89. He'd been suffering from complications from bone cancer for many years.

In "Watch Mr. Wizard," which was produced from 1951 to 1964 and received a Peabody Award in 1954, Herbert turned TV into an entertaining classroom. On a simple, workshop-like set, he demonstrated experiments using household items. This, in turn, encouraged children to try similar experiments at home.

What I admired the most was his ability to talk straight to children without talking down to them (similar to the approach I admired so much on Captain Kangaroo) or resorting to sensationalistic tactics to retain their attention so prevelant in present-day programming. Even though the program was aimed at kids, I usually picked up a few new facts on every viewing.

The practical, scientific approach to life is all too rare on television these days (Bill Nye, Science Guy is a decent current example). Don Herbert introduced many young minds to science (and re-awakened a few older ones) and for that we can be eternally grateful. He will be sorely missed.

Coming: It Came From The PO BOX (I Swear!)
After a week of chronic downtime episodes, Crazed Fanboy was forced to move to still another web server this weekend (I apologize to everyone about the hassle of trying to access the site during the frequent outages, the inconvenience was awful, I know). This, of course, I didn't plan on and cost me more time. Things seem stable now and all projects are back on track (including "PO BOX"). It should be up over the next few days....ahem....barring further catastrophe.

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 ©2007 by Michael A. Smith    "La Floridiana" is ©2007 by William Moriaty    "This Week's Movie Review" is ©2007 by Michael A. Smith    "Oddservations" is ©2007 by Andy Lalino    "Creature's Corner" is ©2007 by John Lewis      All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2007 by Nolan B. Canova    
Crazed Fanboy dotcom is owned and operated by Nolan B. Canova

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