Pixar seemed to get its groove back with Inside Out, a look into the mind of an eleven year old girl. Her anthropomorphic emotional states that formed the committee running her brain are: yellow Joy, blue Sadness, red Anger, green Disgust, and purple Fear. Obviously for a family movie, you need to simplify the complex emotions everybody has. But people are made up of many more than the simple primary emotions.
I first learned of this when I was listening to Graham Norton's episode of Desert Island Discs. A TV special from 2001 featured Norton going to Dollywood at the invite of the grand lady herself. One of the things that resulted was the following, which, in a fit of madness and hilarity, Norton picked as one of his discs to take to the desert island with him.
Big Finish Productions has, since 1999, had the license from the BBC to make Doctor Who audio plays. Big Finish has turned this into a gold mine. They have created new stories for the five remaining classic Doctor Who actors (Tom Baker, Peter Davidson, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, and Paul McGann) and for many of the remaining companions as well. New companions for the Doctor have been created, old characters have been given new spinoff series, and the Whoniverse has been explored and expanded unbound by visual effects. The BBC seems to be quite pleased by Big Finish. Not only were the Eight Doctor's Big Finish companions named-checked in "The Night of the Doctor," their license has been extended til 2020.
However, one area has been verboten. The BBC has made any reference to the new Doctor Who series off limits. So no Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, or Twelve Doctors or any of the new companions, monsters, or events can be used in any Big Finish production.
I've been meaning to post this for sometime, but things have just been conspiring to take away my time to type things. But it's important that I share what I've learned. In a vain attempt to distract myself from my increasing decrepitude for my birthday last year, I tried an experiment. I attempted to see how much free stuff I could get just because various businesses take pity on those who are advancing, albeit slowly, closer to the grave. Here is what I learned so you too can have a similar, though hopefully improved, experience.
DO: Sign up for various birthday clubs and whatnot early. I would advise a week out, minimum. This because some setups apparently still need time to process, which is weird and also one of the biggest First World Problems ever.
DO: Sign up for a variety of things. Even if you don't plan on using them. Because you never know. I am still a bit peeved I never made it to Sephora for my free gift there.
The man pictured there is George Cansdale. He is, in essence, the godfather of all of the fantastic BBC wildlife programs we get today from the likes of David Attenborough. On the very first nature programs on the BBC, Cansdale would bring zoo animals into the studio for the benefit of the television viewing audience…the live television viewing audience.
I was listening to one of Attenborough's audiobooks, where he discusses one of his own earliest television adventures, Zoo Quest for a Dragon from 1957. In explaining some of the live shenanigans that the zoo animals would sometimes get up to while in the studio with Cansdale, he shared this:
Edgar Wright is near and dear to our hearts. First, he had Spaced, a delightfully mental comedy show which also introduced a lot of people to the dynamic duo of Simon Pegg (co-creator/scribe of the series with Jessica Stevenson) and Nick Frost. That may have come out first, but I was ignorant of that madness. He made Shaun of the Dead (co-written by Pegg) which managed to send up everything about the zombie sub-genre (while simultaneously helping to revive it) but still be an actual horror movie. It is hands down one of the most amazing feats I've ever seen on screen writing-wise, since it seems to go from truly comic moments to truly horrific moments and then back again in the blink of an eye. (Penelope Wilton in the pub, anyone?)
Arthur C. Clarke once said "The dinosaurs became extinct because they didn't have a space program." I have created a Need Coffee Pinterest board entitled "The Reason the Dinosaurs Went Extinct is They Had No Coffee." And now those two things have finally come together--and I think mankind can, collectively, make the next step.
Now, you may say that we've had coffee in space. And that's true. But just like astronaut ice cream is anything but ice cream, coffee in space is coffee, Jim, but not as we know it. But decent coffee drinks are in sight as an honest-to-God espresso machine has reached the International Space Station, thanks to Italian companies Lavazza and Argotec.
So there we were, minding our own business, watching the Aliens commentary (as you do), when the Marines in the cast started discussing Al Matthews aka Sgt. Apone. I forget what it was exactly that was said, but I was inspired to look him up on Wikipedia (which is always right) and learned something new: before he loved the Colonial Marine Corps, he had landed a hit single in 1975 with "Fool," which reached #16 on the UK Singles Chart.
The path then was clear: find the song. And the Internet did not let me down. Here he is live from Top of the Pops...