Thursday, July 31, 2008

Origins: That's Some Coooooool Shit!

I actually had a request yesterday for my blog. This is a first for Chris Johnson Discusses Stuff. My friend Shanks wanted to me to tell the origin of a catch-phrase that some of you may not be familiar with. The phrase in question is "That's some cooooooooool shit!" If you're wondering how exaclt it's said, ask me in person sometime and I'll be happy to demonstrate.

Well, it's kind of a simple story but it is a fine example of how a meme evolves in a small community. Back in college, Shanks and I used to rent a lot of movies. The main place we went was called Wherehouse Video and was on Glebe Road. That had one of the best selection of horror and genre movies you could find at the time. Remember folks, in the days before the internet it was difficult to track down specific movies that were not readily available at your local Blockbuster.

Well, one of the movies we watched a lot was Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story. In the movie, a guy tells Bruce Lee "have you ever seen any of those chop-socky flicks?" makes a series of hand gestures and sound effects and says "that's some cool shit!" Well, shortly after hearing it for the first time both Shanks and I began quoting it. We would use it to desribe anything that we found cool. Eventually it grew into drawing out the word "cool" as long as possible. It started catching on with Polak, Dante, and Marsh. Sadly, neither Ralph or Abramos: King of the Hill People picked up on it. When I found Shanks online recently the first thing I emailed him was, of course, "that's some cooooooooool shit!"

If there is any part of the story I forgot, Shanks, please fill in the gaps. Next time I'll have to tell the origins of "Rooftop . . . Let's Go!" which is VERY funny.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Superstar Billy Graham is out of his mind!

In 2006 I went up to the Capitol Legends Wrestling event in Rockville, MD. I mainly went to meet Bret Hart but lots of other guys were there and I was really happy to meet them too. I was lucky enough to be able to talk to Sherri Martel before she died and I also got to shake hands with Ernie Ladd before he died not long ago. The only wrestler that no-showed the event was Superstar Billy Graham. The story was that he couldn't get on the plane with some medicine he needed. Remember, this was the time when the airlines were banning all liquids. Well, it looks like we all lucked out in him not coming. Flash forward to 2008. He was scheduled to be at the NWA Legends show down in Charlotte next month. The show is run by the same guy, Greg Price, who ran Capitol Legends. Apparently, SBG started demanding more and more money to come to the show. Today, Greg Price posted a crazy-ass email SBG sent him. Check this out -

In a message dated 7/28/2008 3:02:10 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time, Superstarbg writes:

Subject: $ 475

This number should be, 666 and tattooed on your forehead, you mark whore for wrestling. I will have this email posted on every message board I can find and encourage you to do the same. You have hurt the ones that I love best and covered up the truth with lies, one day you will be in the ditch, flies buzzin around your eyes. I hope that you die and your death will come soon, as I would love to follow your casket on a pale afternoon, I will watch as you are lowered down to your death bed and stand over your grave to make sure that you are dead. I have been praying to the devil that HE will send demons to pluck out your eyes, cut your tongue in half and sever your ears, spit venom in your face and gut you with a butcher knife and watch as your intestines spill out. You fucking worthless wrestling mark whore. More coming.

Holy shit! What the fuck brought that on? It looks like SBG is becoming seriously psychotic. It is a known fact that steroids have fucked his body up in a big way. Maybe they've affected his brain too. This type of weird crap adds to the notion that steroids made Chris Benoit psychotic. SBG's real name is Wayne Coleman. Hey Wayne, if it wasn't for those "wrestling mark whores" no one would know who the fuck you are! Go get some psychological help and stop sending out emails that sound like they were written by a member of the Manson Family.

Shanks is now an Amazon Vine Voice

Thanks to the magic of the internets I have been able to reconnect with Andy Shanks, a buddy of mine from college. This man is a life-long video game player. In fact, he is so hardcore I remember him videotaping the end sequences of games back in the day. How he figured out how to record off of his Genesis is still a mystery to me today. In one classic tale which I will recount to you my friends and loyal readers, I disturbed him when he was at the end of a particular game and caused him to lose. He proceeded to come out of his room and knock the wind out of me! Needless to say, I never messed with him again when he was playing a game.

I bet some younger readers don't understand why Shanks would be so mad. You have to understand, before the original Playstation there were no memory cards! You'd have to somehow accumulate enough lives to burn through at the end to actually be able to finish a game. If some joker like yours truly came along and caused you to lose, you'd have to start all over. So don't judge Shanks to harshly on his anger.

Well, Shanks recently became a participant in the Vine Voice program on Amazon. They send him games for free so that he can play them and post reviews. Now that is some cool shit! Check out his page and read some of his reviews. The Matrix Fan.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Klee Irwin wants to increase the size of your shit!

Ok, so I am on a wacky infomercial kick here lately. For the past couple of years, there has been an infomercial running for a product called "Dual Action Cleanse." One of the oldest pseudo scientific health claims out there is that your colon is, quite literally, full of shit. The only problem is most of the shit never comes out. According to these health "experts", this extra shit is the cause of all of your physical woes and illnesses. If only you could get it all out you'd feel so much better. Well, guess what? You're in luck! The product being promoted will clean you right out! Needless to say, this claim has no grounding in reality. It is complete bullshit. But, since gullible folk keep falling for it, people keep selling products to serve this need.

The most recent and most entertaining is Klee Irwin. He is this creepy John Waters looking motherfucker that loves to talk about the length and girth of not only his stool but also that of his children. I shit you not! (That will be the last pun, I promise) Below you will see a clip in which Klee talks about the astonishment he experienced when his young daughter took a huge shit. He almost seems like his ego was bruised because it was bigger than his own! I must admit, as men we do tend to take a special pride in producing enormous turds.

What really adds to the surreal nature of the Klee Irwin infomercial are the two touch holes hosting this alleged talk show. They nod, smile, and laugh right along with Klee just like they were discussing a fucking Yankees game. I know that's what they were paid to do. But you know they had to be thinking "this dude is really fucked up." They really earn their pay by A) not laughing at Klee and B) not blurting out "are you shitting me???" (OK there's pun number 2) I just noticed the notation about the second pun also contained a pun, oh well. Anyways, enjoy these classic clips of Klee . . .

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Santo Gold - Blood Circus

I'm not sure how many of my loyal readers remember Santo Gold. It was an infomercial unlike any you had ever seen before or seen since. It aired in the early 90's and featured a guy who called himself Santo Gold. Well, he wasn't just named Santo Gold, he sold gold jewelry that was touted as being made using the "Santo Gold Process." He also relentlessly advertised a movie he claimed to be making called Blood Circus. In the movie, there was an actual wrestling title belt with Santo Gold on it. Blood Circus was billed as a wrestling/horror/comedy that featured an actual rock singer named . . . you guessed it . . . Santo Gold. It's really hard to put into words just how odd the Santo Gold infomercial was. Rumor has it that the movie actually got made and had a premiere in Baltimore, MD. Unfortunately, only a handful of people ever showed up and the movie never played again. No copies or prints of the movie are known to still exist and Santo Gold himself is said to be in jail at the moment. Many people, however, still remember this show fondly as some of the greatest late-night entertainment to ever grace the TV screen. Here are a couple of clips. In the song performance, take note of the two talking angels. I guess they were supposed to be part of the plot of the movie. If anyone has a copy of the entire infomercial they could send me I'd appreciate it more than you know.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Dark Knight

Where do I even begin a discussion of The Dark Knight? It is quite a daunting task really. When a movie is this good it's hard to collect your thoughts enough to get it onto paper. I think I know where to begin. Here goes nothing . . .

Anyone who really knows me is well aware that I am not a fan of the DC Universe. I am a Marvel guy to the core. The main reason I prefer Marvel over DC is because Marvel always seemes more realistic, more grounded in the real world. My dear friend Leeman accuraetly points out that DC is more pure escapism than Marvel. Not to mention, the DCU is filled with what I call "hoaky, old-timey characters." The one exception to the mass of lameness that is the DCU has always been Batman. I have always thought Batman and his particular corner of the DCU were pretty sweet. He is awesome for the very same reason I think Marvel is awesome. Bruce Wayne/Batman is a complex character. He is a realistic person internally that anyone that is interested in significant moral choices can relate to. Also, Batman is grounded in reality. He is a regular guy with no super powers. He fights crime with his wits, physical abilities, and vast wealth. His villains are, for the most part, psychotic criminals, not mad scientists gone awry. Batman is everything that the DCU is not.

Because of my affinity for Batman, I have always wanted to see a Batman movie done right. In 1989, Tim Burton's Batman was a radical departure from what had come before it in terms of comic book films. It was a step in the right direction but, alas, not quite there. It was the first of Tim Burton's many "gothic fairy-tales" that I can personally do without. I swear, if Johnny Depp hadn't been on 21 Jumpstreet at the time, Burton would have probably had him play Batman. Well, after Burton's original film it was all downhill. We all know how bad they eventually became.

Then Chris Nolan made Batman Begins. It had a ton of promise but was tied down by a lot of silly bullshit we have come to associate with comic book films. Too much CGI, an obligatory origin story, and a dumb-ass scheme on the part of the villain. Liam Neeson was a perfect Ra's al Ghul. But poisoning Gotham's water supply with some gas made by The Scarecrow? Give me a fucking break. The train sequence at the end was the typical CGI "big" ending for the comic book film bullshit. All of these problems are gone in The Dark Knight.

The Dark Knight is a real crime movie with Batman. It's not full of stupid gadgets with the word "bat" attached to them. It has a real plot about a city trying to enforce law and order in the face of a criminal psychopath who follows no logic and seeks only to bring everyone down to his level. There have been comparisons to Michael Mann's Heat and I think that is fair. This isn't just a good comic book movie, it is a good movie. If Batman has always been a kind of comic book film noir, this movie finally achieves that. The Dark Knight is not just one action sequence after another. It is filled with fantastic character moments and believable internal conflicts. The Joker keeps redrawing the line and Batman, Jim Gordon, and Harvey Dent all have to make choices about where they will stand in relation to it. Each man makes his own choices and has to face the consequences. The choices aren't easy and no one feels particularly good about what they have to do.

I know people are tired of this coming up but I believe it is relevant for this film. (Sorry Leeman) This may be the ultimate movie about the post 9/11 world. What choices do we make in the face of an enemy that has no sense of logic? Where do we draw our personal lines of right and wrong when our enemies have none? How do we keep our citizenry safe in a world of utter chaos? If we do redraw our lines of right and wrong, does the enemy win after all? These are the questions society is asking itself right now and they are the questions asked by The Dark Knight. The film poses these moral dillemmas without the heavy-handed obviousness of the modern Battlestar Galactica. It's there if you want to see it but it's not rubbed in your face. The difference is truly good writing versus faux good writing.

Batman kicks ass in this film and Heath Ledger is every bit as good as people say he is. He has contributed the definitive portrayal of The Joker. This is not some idiot phoning-in his standard schtick while dancing to shitty Prince tunes. If no one told you this was Heath Ledger, you'd have no idea who this was. He transforms himself into the character. The other real stand-out is Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent. He exudes a likeability and pathos more than anyone else in the film. I'll chime in with the notion that he'd make a great Captain America. Oh, and good riddence Katie Holmes! She can stick with fighting the evil forces of Xenu. Maggie Gyllenhaal is the perfect Rachel Dawes.

Believe it or not, the Tim Burton film came out 19 years ago. It has taken that long to finally see a fully realized Batman film. We owe Chris Nolan a huge debt of thanks for giving us the movie we never actually thought could exist.

The Dark Knight is the gold standard of comic books films. Future directors better step up their game after this.