Category Archives: quotables

thoughts on community: the first chang dynasty

Previously on Community: Digital Estate Planning

As the episode drew to a close, I recall having two distinct thoughts: Does the ‘first’ in The First Chang Dynasty mean there will be more Chang dynasties to follow? Also, Chang coupled with some obscure Ocean’s 11-style storyline should be funnier…right? We’ll get back to this later.

“A new day has dawned at Greendale…”

In one corner we have the (fan favorite) Greendale Seven, in the other, Security Chief Benjamin Franklin Chang, the architect of security, harmony and success at Greendale. A birthday Chang-travaganza was soon approaching and this was the study group’s chance to expose the Dean-o-ganger, Dopple-deaner or whatever you prefer to call him, and get themselves un-expelled. What served as the penultimate episode of the season also wrapped up one of the few conflicts of this season. Chang’s tyranny came to an end, the Dean-o-changer was banished back to a life of playing Moby on half-hour comedies and the group could return to Greendale. Alas, all is not well that ends well, and as this episode ended, Troy was moving out of the apartment and into his new life at A/C/ school.

As briefly mentioned earlier, I did want the first, of hopefully many, Chang dynasty episodes to be funnier. However, aside from the zillion quotables, I didn’t really find myself laughing out loud. Sure, there were a few giggles here and there, but nothing beyond that. What this episode, along with Digital Estate Planning and Introduction to Finality, made me realize is that I don’t love this show because it’s always hilarious, I love it because it’s always good. Community proved more than ever this season that it’s willing to try new things and most importantly, the show respects its overly-obsessive fans enough to put meta jokes inside the inside jokes and ensure that our attention to detail doesn’t go unacknowledged. So without further discussion, here are my favorite moments, quotes and stray observations:

  • “Unfortunately, love is not admissible evidence” as a potential line or full rock ballad for upcoming cop opera. Of course the obvious name should be is Copera, but I think Pierce’s Policisical  had real potential.
  • Thanks for the hot water.” Because drinking coffee is just too mainstream.
  • “I love how binoculars make far away things seem like they’re close. They’re like telephones for your eyes.” The adorably child-like Troy, joined at the end by the usually cynical Britta. Really cute moment.
  • Chang’s army of Basterds who were armed with “stun batons and misplaced sexual aggression.” All very cute tiny terrors, but Joshua (played by Ryan Lee, Super 8) aka the dog sneeze in a pair of Reeboks was rightfully Chang’s number two.
  • “Not a lot of people get a second chance, just you and probably Obama.”
  • “This girl in Chicago won’t stop Facebooking me. Looks like J-Swag is going deep dish.” And this is why he’s rightfully the right-hand man.
  • I’m not sure what was hotter, Jeff as a Criss Angel-esque Ricky Nightshade or Britta as his goth assistant.
  • “It was just my head before, but now I’m really in.”
  • What Chang keeps in his file drawer: Extra File Folders. Misc. Chang Puns. Lock Combinations
  • “Peachy keen, Avril Lavigne.”

  • “The best part of the plan is that a certain point, it’s going to look like the plan is failing. But that’s when it’s going to turn out that the failing plan was all a part of the plan.” Jeff channeling Danny Ocean.
  • Sar-cas-tic claps.” Far superior to the slow clap.
  • “Chang, you’re insane. You’re still into key-tar?” Con-ti-nu-i-ty.
  • “Fire can’t go through doors stupid. It’s not a ghost.”
  • “As many of you know, I ate my twin sister in-utero. So, on my birthday I try to remember I’m a winner. This one is for you Connie.” Creepy.
  • The entire rave scene was funny. However, the Dean’s impressive glow-stick dance moves were clutch.
  • Yard-margs (yard-long glasses full of delicious margaritas) at Skeeper’s Bar. Although small, I still respect the call-back.
  • “…a man is only as good as his word or his now through a camera to a guy with a button.” I said adorable and child-like, but I forgot to mention the massive amounts of integrity Troy has.
  • Speaking of Troy…I believe the Dean’s Jeff-inspired collapses are slowly becoming just as amusing to me as Troy’s freakouts.
  • Britta giving Troy a lock of her hair. Also creepy.
  • Troy’s “I know you hate when people do this in movies” lean-in whisper. Sadly, I was hoping the scene would play out like the Buffy/Dawn in The Gift.

Nicole is a TV junkie and TVDM helps her feed a lifelong addiction. She can be found here, providing biased commentary (sprinkled with a few Pop Up Video-esque insights) on her favorite shows, every week.

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30 rock recapping: idiots are people three! and the ballad of kenneth parcell

Previously on 30 Rock: Idiots are People Two

In an epic blog fail (partly due to one of the craziest (and not in a good way) weekends I’ve had in a long time), I did not recap Thursday nights episodes of 30 rock! Blasphemous! Total Botch! Disappointing Blog Wench! Call me/it what you will. You’re getting a recap now and you’ll like it (maybe, kinda).

The Best Friend Gang

In the first episode of last Thursday night, we received Part Deux of “Idiots are People Two”, titled “Idiots are People Three” (IAP3). Clever. So where did we leave off? Oh that’s right, Kelsey Grammer looking oh-so-James-Bondish, a passed out Pete, a worried Jenna and Kenneth, an idiot protest organized by Tracy Jordan, Liz trying to get Jack out of her head, and the end (or so we thought) of a gay protest.

Kelsey, Jenna, and Kenneth (possibly the most unlikely trio ever to be invented or The Best Friend Gang) are busy thinking up a way to make Pete’s supposed mercury poisoning look like an accident. They stage a Kelsey Grammer as Abe Lincoln show to clear the backstage area so Kenneth and Jenna can move Pete. Then Kelsey works his magic and voila! All better. Liz is furious with Jack and tries to get Criss to rip up the check because of the underlying purpose in its being written. Criss, who is new to these parts, doesn’t yet understand the Jack and Liz saga. Jack will forever be in Liz’s head and she’s always going to care what he thinks at least a little bit. Criss’s lack of understanding forces him to end the relationship. Jack is pleased.

NBC we have a Magical Horse

The gay protest is resolved, except for Devon Banks, an arch nemesis of Jack, who has suddenly reappeared in an effort to keep the protest alive and well. With his leverage Devon is asking Jack for help getting his children into St. Matthew’s pre-school, an apparently impossible quest. After schmoozing a St. Matthew’s Board member, who wants the sizeable donation pledged to him by the late Don Geiss, Devon and Jack track down Kathy (Don Geiss’s daughter), and in exchange for changing the NBC mascot to a magical pony, the donation is granted and Banks gets what he wants.

Jack realizes later that he may have jeopardized Liddy’s acceptance to St. Matthew’s. Tracy, Denise Richards, and the rest of the idiots have written the apology they want Liz to read aloud. It’s on an etch-a-sketch, which on one hand is preposterous and idiotic and on the other must have taken great skill. While reading the apology aloud, Liz realizes she’s being an idiot and goes back to Criss, who Jack decided to put on probation until further evaluation can be done.

Liz and Jenna BFFs

In the second episode of last Thursday night, Jack has decided to cancel the Page Program and replace all the pages with computers called “Not Kenneth”. Kenneth tries to get Jack to understand that this will never work, but he fails. Later when the anniversary present Jack had arranged for Hank, president of Kabletown, gets delivered to TGS on the 6th floor, instead of Hank on the 60th floor, he blames a computer glitch, but eventually realizes the Pages are irreplaceable.

Liz, who is fed up with Jenna’s behavior, decides to find a new BFF, which she isn’t sure how to do. She starts with the only other female writer at TGS, who turns her down. Then she tries to approach four all too familiar looking women at a trendy lounge. They reject her/she rejects them. She decides the best way to meet a new friend is to find someone like her. So she goes to a bookstore and knocks on the bathroom. Her new bestie is just as negative as her and Jenna’s new besties are just as self-absorbed. In a scene taken out of every romantic comedy ever written, they both realize they need each other, and hesitant run into a friendly embrace. Awwww!

Showing is Better than Telling

Tracy is having a birthday party and he wants presents. Dot Com and Grizz misinterpreted what Tracy said about donating to charity in lieu of presents. They explain that since he has everything they didn’t think he would need presents. Tracy then goes into a dark place and thinks about how having everything has given him nothing to live for. Dot Com and Grizz eventually repair the damage by finding something that Tracy doesn’t have (a banana cream pie made by a baker from his childhood), which leads Tracy to believe there must be other things he doesn’t have. So he decides to live, which he always planned on doing, he just wanted to show Dot Com and Grizz that he did want presents for his birthday.

Best/Funniest Moments

  • From IAP3: Jack’s Promotion of the new NBC mascot.
  • From IAP3: Denise Richards worried about the moving room also known as the elevator
  • From IAP3: Liz’s image of herself.
  • From IAP3: Kathy and her calming box.
  • From TBOKP: Frank realizes that Jack isn’t better than him.
  • From TBOKP: Hank moping about not receiving an anniversary gift.
  • From TBOKP: Kenneth not being the most popular page.

Quotes

From IAP3

Kelsey: “Here’s to another successful operation by the Best Friends Gang.”

Jack:“Our new slogan, NBC: We have a magical horse, is testing…okay.”

Tracy: “My ringtone is the chicken dance. If I answer it, I won’t hear the whole song!”

From TBOKP

Hank: “I didn’t care for Mr. Socko. In my day socks just kept their mouth shut.”

Dot Com: “You just bought Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s bones, and he’s not even dead!”

Toofer: “He looks scared, like Lutz on an escalator.”

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ghost adventures recapping: old charleston jail

Ghost hunting season has come to an end for our favorite black-clad adventurers. For the season finale lockdown, the trio head to the Old Charleston Jail, famous for its death count and executing the first female serial killer, Lavinna Fisher. The guys will also be joined by the Ghost Adventures Video Mashup winner Robert Laden and his son Dakota. So we have a location with thousands of deaths, an angry female spirit, fans, and Zak Bagans – is this the formula for the ultimate lockdown?

Interviews

Ghost Adventures, Charleston Jail

The guys begin their interviews with tour guide Henry Calhoun, or as Zak notes in a cringe-worthy accent, “The Hoon.” During the last documented 130 years of operation, the jail has seen as many as 14,000 deaths, and during the Civil War briefly held prisoners of war. Part of the jail has been converted into a school, The American College of Building Arts. The guys briefly stop by a classroom, and a girl claims another student’s plaster was mysteriously scratched up when no one was in the room. The Hoon tells of Lavinna Fisher, who he claims to have seen standing behind him, and who often appears in one of the jail’s windows. Before leaping off the gallows, her alleged last words were, “If any of you has a message for the devil, tell me now, for I will be seeing him in a moment.”

Ghost Adventures, Battery Carriage House Inn

Zak decides they should do a ghost hunt during the day to appease their fans, and gets the owner of Bulldog Tours, John La Verner, to take them to the Battery Carriage House Inn. During their carriage tour, Zak learns a lot about the bathroom habits of horses. They start an EVP session in one of the Inn’s haunted rooms. a full spectrum photo show a “dark mass” behind Aaron and it takes them a moment to realize it’s just a shadow. Sigh. The guys ask the spirits to knock over a water bottle, and while that doesn’t happen, they capture an EVP that says, “…take their water away.”

Investigation

They guys prepare for the lockdown, and we’re introduced to Robert Laden and his son Dakota, winners of the video mashup contest. The two will be joining them later in the lockdown. Zak is eager for his date with Lavinna, so they try communicating with her using the spirit box. Zak prompts her using her last words, “if any of you has a message for…” and a female voice states clearly, “the Devil.” The guys all freak out, and I have to say it’s pretty eerie. Aaron sees a white mist coming up the stairs, followed by knocking, but their motion capture camera doesn’t go off.

Ghost Adventures, Devil Voice

Since the activity is strong, Nick locks himself a jail cell to see if they provoke some more. Almost immediately there is a loud bang. Zak finds a bag of plaster knocked over in the next room, but no explanation for why it fell. Nick is getting uncomfortable, and his recorder picks up an EVP of “you make me mad.”

They now decide to let in Rob and Dakota. Robert is locked in a cell by himself for an hour. The guys take Dakota with them, and then send him down a hall to conduct some EVP work. He tries to tempt Lavinna to speak by claiming to be “way hotter than Zak.” They pause to review the tape, but they’re interrupted by loud footsteps and Dakota spots another white mist. Meanwhile, the recorder with Rob picks up an EVP of someone screaming.

After chasing the footsteps up the stairs and finding nothing, Zak and the guys decide to review their tape. They uncover two EVPs, stating, “let me out” and “I wanna go.” They go to collect Rob, and let the two fans out of the building. The guys head back upstairs, this time with a still camera. Aaron starts feeling sick and Zak snaps a full spectrum photo of him. Nick and Zak’s cameras suddenly drain of battery power. They capture one final EVP of “get off him!” and Zak hopes this is a good spirit that will keep the evil ones like Lavinna at bay once they leave.

Ghost Adventures, Aaaron Full Spectrum Photo

An interesting end to what has been a so-so season. The spirit box voice of “the Devil” has made my list of top evidence though – the timing, the intelligence, the nature of the voice – it was so creepy. That’s the reason I keep coming a back to this show (plus my inexplicable love for Zak Bagans) – those bits of evidence that really make you think. Until next time!

Quotes

Zak – I somehow seem to attract psychotic evil women.
The Hoon – Do you? That’s good for you! [laughs]
Zak – No. It’s not. It’s not.

Zak – What are the chances of a couple of guys like us hooking up with a horse like that?
Aaron – Whoa! This ain’t Tijuana, dude!

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ghost adventures recapping: rose hall

This week are trio are embarking on their first international lockdown, visiting Rose Hall in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The hall was home to the infamous “White Witch” Annie Palmer, who according to legend practiced voodoo, murdered her husbands, and took male slaves into her bed and subsequently murdered them. Ghost Hunters International took a shot at Rose Hall in 2010 and found no significant evidence, but maybe Zak can inspire Annie to give him some paranormal lovin’.

Interviews

Ghost Adventues, Rose Hall

The guys start off the interviews with Rose Hall’s manager Beverly Gordon, who offers them some “witches brew” to help them “feel Annie’s spirit.” She takes them on a tour of the house, giving them the details of Annie’s misdeeds. Annie would take pleasure from standing on her balcony and watching her slave lovers be whipped and tortured. Her three husbands were murdered in the house: one by poison, one by stabbing, and the last was strangled by her freed slave lover, who later murdered Annie herself during the slave riots of the 1830s. The guys then talk to owner Michele Rollins, who explains that Annie’s spirit was so feared that all her portraits were torn down and her concrete grave was marked by crosses to contain her ghost.

The guys have an abysmal game of soccer against the hotel staff, which might have something to do with Aaron playing in flip flops. The guys are given an opportunity to tour the Cinnamon Hill Plantation House, former home of Johnny Cash. They will be the first team to investigate the location. Later, they take a culinary tour the city, sampling sky juice, coconut water, and jerk chicken. There is a minimum of goofing off this time around, which I hope means there is some serious activity in store.

Investigation

The guys start off at Johnny Cash’s house, which has been left the exactly as it was when he lived there. On the stairs, they start an EVP session but they don’t capture any audio. The EMF meter gives some spikes around some of Cash’s possessions, such as his alligator trophy and shoes. They move to the living room, where they try again to communicate with a highly calibrated digital recorder. Zak plays Professor Paranormal and tries to appear scientific by explaining that recording devices are more sensitive to sound than the human ear.

Ghost Adventures, Johnny Cash Shoes

With no audio captured, the trio head downstairs to the basement where they discover what looks like a jail cell and a legion of cockroaches. Zak flips the hell out, claiming that as a child growing up in Florida he was “severely traumatized” by cockroaches. Oh man, can we have some ridiculous b roll of that, please? They come to the conclusion the basement was used as slave quarters and do a quick EVP session, but they strike out on audio for the third time and end their lockdown.

Ghost Adventures, Zak Raving

The trio moves on to Rose Hall to continue their lockdown. Outside, Zak likens the cricket noise to techno music and busts out into some rave dancing. Because of Annie’s liaisons with slaves, they bring along a huge security guard named Wilson to hopefully provoke the White Witch. Before they really begin investigating they notice a single set of bare footprints with no explanation. Wilson is directed to stand in the middle of a circle of REM pods, and almost immediately the devices start alarming, appearing to respond in an intelligent manner to questions. The guys head downstairs to review their audio with tech guy Billy, and they capture an EVP of a female voice saying “oh my goodness,” apparently in reaction to Wilson. Oh my, indeed.

The trio spilt up, each taking a room where one of Annie’s husbands were murdered to conduct an EVP session. Nick and Zak don’t get any response, but Aaron hears a woman scream and his recorder confirms it. Aaron goes off alone to Annie’s grave, where he hears some footsteps in the woods. Meanwhile Nick and Zak stay in the house to do thermal sweeps and full spectrum photography. Zak captures what looks like a person but immediately debunks it. They end the investigation, and a talk with the groundskeeper reveals that the footprints could have come from a tour guide. Zak really is trying hard to seem serious, because for the first time ever, he announces their evidence is too inconclusive to prove a haunting.

Apparently Zak wasn’t satisfied with the lockdown at the Cash residence, because he returned at a later date to investigate further. When asking if the spirits liked Johnny Cash’s music, he captured a voice that sounded suspiciously like Cash saying, “I do” through the spirit box. Voice analysis showed the voice was nearly identical to Cash’s. Very interesting.

Despite a rich history, Rose Hall proved to be disappointing. While I appreciate Zak’s attempt to be serious, part of what makes the show so entertaining is his unbridled enthusiasm for ghosts. If I want to watch a couple of guys taking a “scientific” approach to the paranormal, that’s what Ghost Hunters is for.

Quotes

Beverly Gordon – I’m taking you to Annie’s bedroom, where she seduced her husbands.
Zak – Hold on, let me get a little buzz first. [Sips his drink] It’s very weird. Annie was very bad, evil.
Beverly – Yes.
Zak – But I like her.
Beverly – She would like you too.
Zak – She always killed her lovers, the next morning, right? So if we chitty chitty bang bang tonight, I’ll be gone in the morning anyway.
Beverly – I’m not sure you’ll get to leave. Are you good at chitty chitty bang bang?
Zak – I think so!

Zak – If there’s any intelligent spirits in this home –
Aaron – He’s not saying that the other spirits aren’t intelligent.
Zak – Like Aaron, he’s definitely not going to be an intelligent one when he goes. He’s the clumsy one, likes to make a lot of noises. You can see, we’re just funny people.
Nick – Or so we think we’re funny people. [Laughs]

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ghost adventures recapping: rocky point manor

After a brief hiatus, our favorite paranormal trio are back again, this time investigating both Rocky Point Manor and a Civil War battlefield in Perryville, Kentucky. The last time the guys investigated near a battlefield, I remember their reenactments more than the evidence itself, so I’m curious to see what happens. I should also note that Zak may have abandoned his hipster glasses, but he is now rocking some facial hair that makes him look like a mirror universe evil twin.

Interviews

The guys talk to Jason Engelhardt, an Iraq War veteran whose sister owns Rocky Point Manor. Zak gives him props for serving in the war. During the battle in Perryville, the Manor was briefly used as a field hospital, and musket balls have been found in the backyard. Jason claims that when staying alone in the house one night, he heard several loud bangs with no explanation. More reports of activity come from Jeff Waldridge and Lee Kirkland of SHOCK Paranormal. Lee captured a door opening by itself on video. Zak manages to use the word “shock” 8 times while talking to Jeff, who claims to have seen a huge, black menacing figure. Over some heroic music, Zak likens the building’s floors to a portrait of the past. Sigh.

Ghost Adventures, Rocky Point Manor

Jason then takes the guys to the basement, where he and Zak enter the crawlspace under the house. As Zak eats dust, finds bones, and makes innuendos about tight holes, Aaron and Nick abandon him to eat hamburgers on the front steps. Afterwards, the guys dig up the yard with metal detectors in search of artifacts. They take their collected finds to a local archaeologist – who determines the bones to be animal and their fragments mostly worthless – and assigns “the goods” a value of $1.98, “Ghost Adventures Road Show” style. Double sigh.

Ghost Adventures Road Show

The guys decide they need make an attempt to be serious, so they visit the nearby Perryville battlefield where 7,500 soldiers died in 4 hours. The confederate dead were buried in two mass graves. The woman giving them the tour also happens to be the person who can give them access – so for first time guys will investigate a battlefield at night.

Investigation

The guys start at the battlefield, and they are dressed as confederate soldiers (Zak is equipped with a gun) in the hope of provoking some activity. They first try for some EVPs with no response, so they head to the site where a confederate general was killed to provoke some more. Zak fires his rifle as a “call to arms,” asking the spirits to rise up in response. Before he can load another shot, faint cannon fire can be heard for a few minutes. Zak decides to fire again, and this time Aaron captures a transparent mist on the thermal imaging camera.

Ghost Adventures Mist Evidence

Their last stop is the confederate mass burial site. They do another EVP session, but are interrupted by three clearly audible gunshots that seem to come from the battlefield. They check with the battlefield manager Kurt Holman about the gunfire, something he has never heard in his 22 years working there. A check with Fort Knox – 100 miles away – confirms no military maneuvers took place. Combined with thermal evidence that showed no other people on the field, it lends some credibility to the audio.

They head to Rocky Point Manor, and Lee from SHOCK Paranormal tells then that after their interviews, a locked door was found open and curtains were pulled down from windows. For the investigation they have set up a closed off “nerve center” in the kitchen, where tech guy Billy will be joining them to monitor equipment.

They send Aaron alone upstairs for an EVP session, but nothing is captured. It is then Nick’s turn to head out, this time with the PX device, with has a phonetic database ghosts can manipulate. Nick is barely out the kitchen door when the PX says “close…Nick.” In the hall, the PX continues to go off, putting out the words “distress…stomach…enemy.” Zak worries that their presence may be intimidating the spirits, so he leaves a recorder upstairs alone, and they capture a woman singing. Zak wraps up the episode with a quick rundown of what they captured at each location, and I hope this doesn’t become a permanent feature.

Overall, not too bad of an episode. The battlefield evidence was pretty compelling, even if the silliness was extremely eye roll inducing in the beginning. I find it interesting that they goof off so much in their interviews, and yet try so hard to be taken seriously in their investigations, with Zak now going out his way to debunk things. Don’t worry, Zak. I still love you, mirror universe goatee and all.

Quotes
Zak – Now I hear that you pitched a tent in here?
Aaron – [laughing] Pitched a tent!
Zak – Only you, Aaron, would think about things like that.
Aaron – Well, that’s what she would say…

Zak – Let’s go have some fun in the hole.
Aaron – You said it.
Jason – Enough with the double entendres!

Zak – These floors are the original floors…wood I believe can hold imprints, can hold memories, it can hold moments of time. This is the canvas, literally, that the oil is embedded within these fibers of wood. That oil could contain the portrait, the picture, of the past. To me that’s just…interesting.

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