monkeyFLASHmonkeyBACK… Wrong Music, Wrong Movie

This is only my second journey down monkeyFLASHmonkeyBACK lane, and as it turns out, this post also takes place in 2004.  I really should have started blogging earlier…

Vindicated? Not quite...

There’s nothing quite like a great theme song.  I’m not talking about the musical score, the likes of which composer John Williams will never miss a beat, I’m sure.

(SIDENOTE: I’m of course being sarcastic.  His new music from Star Wars Episodes I and II is okay at best, as well as his theme for the first Harry Potter movie, but none of them will ever be Jaws, E.T., or Indiana Jones.  (INNER SIDENOTE: I doubt they’ll ever make all those stupid warlock books into movies… they’re on book five already… it has to end sometime…))

No, what I’m talking about is the Eye of the Tiger.  Shaft.  Wind Beneath My Wings.

So what does all this have to do with Spider-Man 2?  It has a crappy theme song.

Chris Carrabba, lead (only?) singer of Dashboard Confessional, wrote this wonder of lyric-fest that just “screams” Spider-Man:

Hope dangles on a string like slow spinning redemption
Winding in and winding out, the shine of it has caught my eye
And roped me in, so mesmerizing and so hypnotizing
I am captivated, I am

CHORUS:
Vindicated, I am selfish, I am wrong, I am right
I swear I’m right, swear I knew it all along
And I am flawed but I am cleaning up so well
I am seeing in me now the things you swore, you saw yourself

So clear like the diamond in your ring, cut to mirror your intention
Over sized and overwhelmed, the shine of which has caught my eye
And rendered me so isolated and so motivated
I am certain now that I am

CHORUS

So turn up the corners of your lips
Part them and feel my finger tips
Trace the moment, fall forever

Defense is paper-thin
Just one touch and I’ll be in
Too deep now to ever swim against the current

So let me slip away, so let me slip away
So let me slip away, so let me slip against the current
So let me slip away, so let me slip away
So let me slip away, so let me slip away

CHORUS

Slight hope dangles on a string
Like slow spinning redemption

What?!  Does that have to do anything with Spider-Man at all?  It has been rumored (or it’s totally true) that he had another song called I Need a Sure Thing ready to go prior to seeing the completed film, then he had a change of heart and wrote Vindicated in about fifteen minutes.  How would that song have fared?  Well, here are its lyrics:

You are a razor blade
You are precision-cut
You are a stare sharp as the tack in my eye?
At rest in my veins
[Your pulse in my neck?]
As sharp-edged as questions the time I have left
And so you are on my mind.

I need a burning stake
I need a piercing dart
I need something as hot as it is sharp
And I need to bleed
I need to burn
I need a sure thing
I need a sure thing
And you are a mystery to me

You are a paper bird
Folded and folded and creased
And bent and shaped from a five dollar bill
It’s priceless to me
And never spent
It hangs from a ceiling fan over my bed
And so you are on my mind

I need a burning stake
I need a piercing dart
I need something as hot as it is sharp
And I need to bleed
I need to burn
I need a sure thing
And you are a mystery to me

I’ll hang my hopes all at once on a rope
There’s a possibility that this is happening to someone who’s not me
I’ll hold my head
Keep it still and pretend
That these spins and the webs
Are actually desirable

I need a burning stake
I need a piercing dart
I need something as hot as it is sharp
And I need to bleed I need to burn
I need a sure thing
And you are a mystery to me

I’m beginning to think Chris Carrabba doesn’t know the difference between a spider, a vampire, and a Spider-Man.

At least Chad Kroeger and Josey Scott’s Hero from the first Spider-Man film was about a hero coming to save us (or not) and him not staying to wait.  But then again, Macy Gray sang a song in that same movie:

"I tried to walk away but... my contract with Sony kept me here."

In closing, I guess every song can’t be Peter Cetera’s Glory of Love from The Karate Kid II.  That was a perfect match.

(SIDENOTE: It wasn’t a perfect match.  It was originally supposed to be in one of the Rocky films…)

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JusWondering… What Would You Put On Your Scale Of Fury?

This has been something I’ve been meaning to transcribe for a while now, and even by doing so, rage has bubbled up from the depths of my… say, what’s it called if you don’t have a soul?

Anyemptyvessel, this is my Scale of Fury.  It’s a series of missteps in pop culture that shake me to my core me, ranked on a scale from 1 to 10.  1 equals “infuriating” and 10 equals “someone must die.”

Let’s begin:

1) Invention of the word Squeakquel

This filmed monstrosity should not have occurred once, let alone twice.  It’s already cloying enough without an unnecessary pun.  Much like my pun above.

2) The Prequels

Not too long ago, and not very far away, I would have ranked Jake, Hayden, Jar Jar, and Ani much higher on my Scale of Fury.  But a few factors have changed that.  One – The Clone Wars cartoon series is really good.  Two – there’s a lot more crap out there that pisses me off more.

3) No guns in E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial

Steven Spielberg needs to make some new friends.  George Lucas no doubt inspired Spielberg to go back and tinker with (and tinkle on) his classic 80’s family film.  Why remove the guns?  That’s how we knew the bad guys were bad guys.  Sure, they were aiming them at little kids, but we knew they weren’t going to use them.  Just like it was with the Russians and their nukes…

4) The Special Editions

Where to begin with these nut shots?  Jabba the Shitty CGI.  Young Anakin’s Jedi Spirit.  The replaced musical numbers.  This:

5) Cancellation of “Arrested Development”

It could be higher up on the list, but it did get three (2.75) full seasons.  Was it Fox’s fault for shitty scheduling?  Or is America primarily full of According to Jim fans?  I think the questions answer each other.

6) Emo Spider-Man

I’m sure I hope Sam Raimi had a better plan for what could have been the best Spider-Man film of them all.  Instead, we got Sandman, a rushed Harry Osborne vengeance/rebirth subplot, a wasted Eddie Brock/Venom, and this:

7) Cancellation of “Firefly”

You can blame this one on me as much as everyone else.  I kept hearing all the rave reviews about this show while it was shortly on the air, and I never watched.  Could just one person have made a difference?  If that one person was me, then yes.

8) The Last Airbender movie

I wanted earth, wind, water, and fire from this remake of the incredible Nickelodeon show, and all I got was fart noises.  Must. Repress. My. Diatribe.  (More on my thoughts on M. Night Shyamalan)

9) Indiana Jones and the Give Me a Fucking Break

Again, the Spielberg with the Lucas.  To distract myself: anyone else ever notice ol’ Steven’s initials are “S.S.“?  Ironic, no?  (More of my thoughts on Kingdom of the Crystal Skull)

10) The “LOST” Finale

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.  Fu. Ck. Th. Is. Sh. Ow.  For years, I defended it, telling people the writers weren’t making it up as they went along.  They were making it up as they went along.  (More of my thoughts on LOST)

The Sh– To Just Sh–ty… Greed Day, Er, Green Day

The Shit =

Dookie as I say, not as I Dookie.

The Shitty =

Don’t believe the above preview?  Here’s some footage from the show:

WHAT HAPPENED TO MY POP PUNK HEROES?!

When did they turn into ABBA?

As opposed to Papa Pizzeria!

When did they turn into Billy Joel?!

Well, his name "is" Billy Joe Armstrong...

When did they turn into Spider-Man?!?!

Spidey has a musical? Not U2...

Ah, who am I to judge?  If someone wanted to make a Broadway musical of this blog, I’d let them.  As a matter of fact, I might begin composing it during the actual Green Day. Next Tuesday.  The 20th.  Of April.

Drunken Recollection… New York: The Saga Continues…

Okay, so where was I?  Ah yes.  On Wall Street, which was under construction.  We were looking for the giant bull statue for the hell of it, even though we (Steve and I) were unsure if there was a giant bull statue in New York.  (There is… but we couldn’t find it.)

Around this time, I finally got to hear the voice of a fellow blogger (we’d eventually meet up later during my trek through East Village).  Our phones were running lower on energy than we were, so we decided in order to make it through whatever the night held in store for us, functioning electronics seemed important, and we returned to home base.

At the hotel, we plugged in our cells and due to the lack of sleep (this will be explained in the prequels), the Snuggies (this will be explained in the sequel) and bed were mighty tempting.  Yes, I typed “bed” with no “s.”  They only had a queen available (which I should probably specify is a bed size, seeing as how people might have preconceived notions about NYC).  Apparently, a four-star hotel according to Hotwire consists of this criteria: if they don’t have a pair of twins available (again – bed size), they’ll give you each a cookie.  A cookie that was prepared earlier in the day.  Possibly for the continental breakfast’s dessert?

But I digress, and as such, our digestive systems had processed those cookies long ago, so dinner sounded like a plan.  We asked the concierge to recommend a pizzeria (one that served booze was our only criteria).  He recommended one nearby – Angelo’s, on 55th and 2nd.  (Don’t I sound all local-y?  My confidence in understanding the map of the city ultimately proved to be a bit too confident.  Sequel…)

We ordered the flat-bread pizza and $6 beers.  Steve quickly learned that when the choices for $6 beers are Bud, Bud Light, and Bass Ale, you choose Bass Ale.  As we ate, we eyed the happy hour going on across the street ($3 beers!), and as soon as we finished, we headed over there for a few more (choices: Miller Lite, MGD, Sam Adams?  Sam Adams, of course!) and then back to the hotel to retrieve our banes of existence means of communication.

We headed toward Central Park to await our first fellow bar hopper – another Steve.  As we wandered the streets, we passed the bridge that Spider-Man battled on with the cable cars (I’m soooo cultured), and I missed the entirety of the quiet beauty that was the sunset that night.

As we began slinking in and out of a plethora of East Village bars, our group’s number grew to four with Tim, and five with Evan.  Eventually my fellow blogger met up with us after a lot of phone- and text-tagging, which was cool.  The hookah joint we were waiting to get into was taking too long, so we headed to another bar that carded people for some reason (nowhere else did).  In the sorta dark, sorta empty, martini-ish bar (what would be the opposite of a hole-in-the-wall?) we ended up at, I brought up Lost, I investigated something weird on the table with my fingertip (thankfully it was Guinness foam), and I think I even mentioned Twilight (the movie – not the book, as if that makes a difference).  Oh yeah… wonderful, wonderful Guinness was ordered around.  One guy selected a bottle of wine “with one glass.”  And mussels somehow ended up on the table.

Members of our group started parsing off at that point.  I recall a sliver of a diner that was stopped at by the solo wine drinker and that it amazingly carried no smell whatsoever, good or bad.  And somehow Steve and I made it back to home base.  (Taxi?  Subway?  Feet?)

I’m beginning to feel like this may be Uncle Sean’s Drunk Story Time all over again… So much more to go!

JusWondering… What Superpower Would You Like To Have?

From time to time, I like playing “What Superpower Would You Like to Have?” with my friends.  It’s usually the guys who participate, but the ladies have as well.  To play, you usually have to rule out the standards of the comics industry, like your Superman’s, your Spider-Man’s, and any of the X-Men.  Only straight-up special abilities are allowed.  For instance, last night’s trio of options:

  1. Indestructibility
  2. Invisibility
  3. Flight

Indestructibility was chosen by most (myself included, at first… I’m so wishy-washy).  It was decided that this allowed you an extent of fearlessness that would bolster you upon whatever life path you wanted.  Whether it be in business, in sports, or on the battlefield, you could be all you could be.

Invisibility was looked at as a shady route, which it most likely would be.  You’re given the ability to be sneaky and spy, to be a pervert, or to be a master thief.  No one selected this option… out loud.

Flight was a moot point, until my friend Devin interjected that it would be the most freeing.  He suggested that life would be a little less stressful if you could get up and go when the world was getting you down.  This got me thinking that I wanted Flight powers as well, because it too would provide you with an extra boost of confidence to accomplish more in this world.

Plus, how cool would it be to show up at the Red Carpet of the Academy Awards show, flying around, screaming, “Look at me!  Look at me!”  You’d take all the attention away from the glory hounds of Hollywood (but you’d probably also get shot down to be taken and examined, so… maybe not).

Here I come!

Here I come!

Devin also wondered if Indestructibility also provided some level of Immortality, because as he saw it, if the world blew up, you’d be stuck floating in space for forever.  I responded by stating you probably wouldn’t be the only one in the entire planet that had this ability, which then brought the whole discussion crashing down.  I guess the game of “What Superpower Would You Like to Have?” isn’t as Indestructible as I thought.

Mental Illness As Defined By Female Characters In Superhero Films (A Drunken Recollection/JusWondering Joint)

I have a friend that, as another of my friends pointed out (who is also friends with him), suffers from Mary Jane Watson Syndrome.

Mary Jane Watson Syndrome?” you may ask.  “That’s not in the DSM-IV.”

You’d be the wrong kind of nerd for asking that question, but it is true.  The Mary Jane Watson Syndrome, as explained by my friend (about my other friend):

He likes to make people think he’s doing better than he’s actually doing, because it’s too embarrassing.  Like in the first “Spider-Man” film, when Mary Jane runs into Peter for the first time in New York, and she tells him all the wonderful things she’s accomplished.  Then the short order chef comes out and exposes her lie…

It’s the Mary Jane Watson Syndrome.

Poignant, geeky, and spot-on, for sure.  But it got me wondering – are there other conditions that could be defined by the ladies in superhero films?  I mean, they typically aren’t written as the most stalwart of women.  Otherwise, who would be left for the hero to save if there were no damsels in distress?

(more after the jump) Read More