Thursday, July 31, 2008

Move On.Org Advertisement for Obama Channels the 90s: RIDER STRONG!

This made me laugh out loud tonight as I sit, watching Comedy Central. Wait for it.
RIDER STRONG IS ALIVE (I was so busy laughing I didn't notice till a friend pointed it out. Thanks Sophie)! This boy has met the world after childhood acting. It also beats McCain approving a commercial comparing Obama to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.

They're so two years ago anyway.

I so want some mid 90s TGIF right now.

Lets all remember those Brain on Drugs commercials from the 90s.

Those and those wonderful NBC "The More You Know" advertisements saved my childhood*

*Plus parental guidance and an extra dose of Jesus.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Throwback Pop Culture Clip-Wayne Head: Actors and Their Cartoon Selfs

"The Party's Just Begun!"
Somewhere in doing research for my dissertation and watching Hollywood Shuffle, I remembered the joy that was the WB 11 Saturday morning cartoons. Sometimes ABC just didn't do it for you. Keeping in line with the rest of this weeks posts and my homage to comics in character form with Robin Harris in all his Bebe's Kids glory on this season's cover, this week's throwback is Wayne Head. This wonderful little cartoon, based on the wonder that is the Wayans family, was definitely a favorite of mine. I'll keep going with the WB toons in later weeks.

Wayne Head was in the same multicultural vein of CBear and Jamal but a little less Hey Arnold and probably a bit more like Fat Albert. And since we're paying homage to comics in cartoon form we can't leave out Bill Cosby who's done it to himself not once, but twice. Unfortunately there are no appropriate Little Bill video clips online. They are all a little warped and perverted.

That's it. Enjoy your day.

Black Disney Princess Update

Peep this trailer for the Black Disney Princess movie from the good folks over at Bossip/Livesteez. Where did that reject Song of the South fly come from? Come on Disney you've done the random black sidekick for Disney's heroines before. Neither Harry Belafonte's Sebastian or Eddie Murphy's Mushu was that frightening. The verdict is still our because the movie's not done yet. Well at least Anika Noni Rose and Jenifer Lewis are working. But still, this movie is officially getting the side eye treatment of the week.

And I promise this is not becoming the Disney Blog. I wouldn't have a big ol pic from Bebe's Kids if it was.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Happily Never After: The Struggle for a Black Princess in the Disney Culture.

While browsing That Black Girls Site I noticed an article on Disney' s search for a black princess. I had previously spoken about Disney's struggle with princesses and my excitement for Maddy in this piece about American Girl ("American Girl Movie. A Playlist and An Apology"). Apparently my dream is never going to come true. According to this piece it has been reported that the princesses' name has been changed to Tiana, she's going to get with some non-black dude, and they will live in a fictional land. Well for one this disproves my theory that non-white Disney princesses are all localized in order to deal with the issues of ethnicity. Don't they owe the South one after the horror of Song of the South?* However, it does bring up other issues that are too numerous to mention.

I can talk all day about race, cartoons and children's programming as its something that I've wondered about since the days of Doug and the Puzzle Place (really the Funnys and the Beets were white, everyone else included rich lil Bebe was funky colored). But I won't.

Instead I bring the past which I may be looking at through rose colored glasses. HBO used to do a great series that was also available for purchase called Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child. The stories were "politically correct" and featured a range of races and ethnicities for the characters. There was this one Caribbean one that my family watched and laughed at over and over. Robert Guilliame narrated and there was quite the cast (voices) of minority actors (Magaret Cho**, Raven-Symone, Sinbad, even Pauletta Washington). The stories were really good with a little moralistic lesson as well as not demeaning the life of women. Apparently the episodes still come on in the morning. If you subscribe to HBO Family check it out: the schedule's here.

Here's a very short clip from "The Princess and The Pea:"

Also a Wikipedia article including links to the IMDB and HBO website. If you're really interested you can buy some episodes on Amazon.

*At 20 years old after seeing the movie the year before I went to Disneyland to try and ride Splash Mountain. It was sadly closed. Still that was a great way to spend senior year Spring Break.
**Crazy as Magaret Cho may be you have to admit she rocks hard for the kids. This and C-Bear and Jamal were the ish.

Happy Belated Birthday to Me!

I've been so busy not posting even though I spend every day starting at documents on my computer I completely missed the fact that my little blog has had a birthday. It all started back with my obsession with Vanity Fair and the fact that they put out a twenty cover issue dedicated to Africa. Check it out here: Back then me and papa magazine were on very good terms. Our relationship is a little shaky now because of some silly stunts they've pulled that I haven't had time to go into detail with over here at Vanity Dark.

At the moment though, they are reconciling with me since they put Michelle on the top ten best dressed list. Since we're obsessed over here we welcome any one else with an obsession.

I do have a My Favorite Scenes birthday edition that's been in the works for some time (since my real birthday), but I just can't find some videos that i want to include. And instead of watching every episode of Living Single on You Tube, I'm dealing with my dissertation.

But I will bring at least a Throwback Thursday this week. Until then, take some time to find the nostalgia in everything.

The Queen.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

N.E.R.D. Plays Carling Brixton Academy over a month ago

and I'm finally going to provide my bad video from the night. Overall it was a pretty good show. N.E.R.D. tends to have something akin to a cultish fan base, but the Londoners were ready and psyched for the concert. I am convinced that 1/2 of the people in attendance purposely went out and got Billionaire Boys Club outfits and BAPES just for that night. According to many people in the neighborhood, N.E.R.D. also generated the largest crowd at the Carling Academy in a while. It was a one night only performance at thirty pounds a pop. Apparently Glow in the Dark makes it way over to Europe in the fall, so if you missed it, don't feel too bad.

So after some random Irish band opened, the crowd was ready and hyped for the show. The band came out first, and I'm certain half of the audience thought the drummer was Pharell. But as Pharell and Shay took the stage, the roars became even louder. The backdrop came down and it had dizzying patterns going by on it. It kind of looks like those backgrounds you can choose on a Windows PC for the Jukebox player. I don't know if that was supposed to be an allusion to "Seeing Sounds" or if I was just thinking too hard about the way that the show came together. But in reality, it was a pretty gimmickless show. Now I missed the Glow in the Dark tour, which seemed to be full of sets and really worked as a concept show. This was just straight performances and the crowd thoroughly enjoyed. I guess you don't need all the condiments when you're hungry. Hit after hit was performed and people sang along. Some girl got to go onstage because it was her birthday. My highlight of the night was when they performed "Maybe." That song has my favorite N.E.R.D. video. They also covered the White Stripes "Seven Nation Army." If you don't remember that song, get reacquainted as it has one of the best beats of all times.

At the end of the night, Pharell came back out and performed "Frontin." He acknowledged that it wasn't a N.E.R.D. song, and said he wasn't going to perform it, because he had retired the song from concerts. He also yelled at the crowd that it was a N.E.R.D. concert, and so they should appreciate N.E.R.D. songs. Whatever. I mean I do see the logical and professional dilemma...but he performed the song anyway. It was enjoyed.

I guess that does raise some other interesting questions. If Destiny's Child has a reunited concert do we get to hear Beyonce songs? They do have way more songs than N.E.R.D. to choose from but its a question. When New Edition reunited did BBD or Bobby Brown or Johnny Gill get to do their own songs? Were they all even in the reunited group? Does anyone want to hear grown men sing Mr. Telephone Man?

My new observations from that night: Pharell is even more skinny than I thought he was. Anti-Matter from the latest album, Seeing Sounds is one of my new favorites songs. The Brits live for this kind of music.

Below I've uploaded some clips from the show. The sound is kind of bad and the video is nothing to write home about. I can't even remember what they were singing at some points (It was the weekend of June 14th after all).

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New Project Runway

Running thoughts:
Excitement! and Color beyond the tan guy! Joy!

Well let me not get too excited I've only seen five minutes of the first episode.

Did that girl just say she'd be the first African American to win Project Runway? Do you not remember Michael Knight?

How much did LVMH pay for that product placement? We know yall werent drinking Andre champale , its alright.

Aerosmith+Lauryn Hill + Michael Jackson: I'm intrigued girl, I'm intrigued.

Ooh a Brooklyn Guy, Big Up.

Black women and Asian man, yall need to stick together. But dude you seem a little annoying.

Oh goodness, there are so many parents on this show. See kids arent a hindrance to the dream.

Why is Eva Longoria interrupting. I already suffered through Over My Dead Body this week. She needs to let me be until the enxt season of Desperate Housewives.

Why is the LG tv ad so long and why did it seem like an almost interesting tv show or movie? I so know that actress from somewhere.
Kimberly go do some unpacking! Okay!

More thoughts on everything later.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Real Talk

I'm alive and my mind still has wonderfully random thoughts going through it, but I havent had my continuous access to the internet this week, so I haven't been able to post. I've been crashing in Brixton, hping to make it out of London before getting stabbed. I'll be back on Monday, keeping it strictly mature and classy from Brooklyn.

Until then, remember there's nostalgia in everything.


Thursday, July 03, 2008

Throwback Pop Culture Clip: Happy Independence Day!

Apparently it's a holiday weekend out in the States, so Happy Independence Day! In lieu of Independence Day, I celebrated Guy Fawkes day back in October. Exciting I know.

This clip is from the Will Smith old enough to be a throwback film (before he got anywhere near the Scientology juice), Independence Day. I never watched it, not even when they played it on the bus ride to Philly in high school, so I couldn't really tell you what its about, but from the clip it sounds a whole lot like the premise to what September 11th became for the world. Except that the September 11th terrorists were not aliens from another planet.

I'll miss the fireworks.