I know I have been having Walking Dead withdrawals and October is a long way off, but take heart! The cast is back in Georgia on set. So they’re working on it but in the meantime if you need a TWD fix, check out this video of excertts for the TWD Discussion Panel at Texas Frightmare Weekend.
I’m a bit of a history buff so this movie was on my to watch list. Okay yes Norman Reedus is in it too. Yesterday I noticed that it was on Netflix so I got my chance to watch it.
It is based on a historical incident, the trial of the Lincoln assassination conspirators, and it looks like it stayed pretty close to what actually happened. The plot actually focuses on Mary Surratt, the first woman hanged by the Federal Government. The Actual conspiracy is more in the background.
If you know your history, Mary Surratt owned a boarding house in which the Lincoln assassination was hatched by by John Wilkes Booth and his co-conspirators, including Mary’s son John. Mary along with several others who may or may not have been guilty and one that was definitely guilty; was arrested, tried and convicted by a military tribunal. Three other conspirators were hanged along with Surratt.
The movie focuses on the actions of the Federal government in conducting what was basically a kangaroo court, culminating in the hangings. We know from history that Booth is clearly guilty of assassinating the President, he did it in a crowded theater. We also know that Louis Payne is guilty of attempted assassination in the case of Secretary of State William Sewell, he attacked Sewell in his home with several witnesses present. The guilt of the others may not be so clear.
Questionable witnesses, denial of a trial by a jury of their peers and government tampering with the panel judging the conspirators show the lengths the government will go to. There is clear crossing of constitutional boundaries including the meddling of President Andrew Johnson in vacating a writ that would have saved Mary from the gallows and granted her a new trial in a civilian court.
Since I can’t get a fix of the Walking Dead I have been watching some other movies starring some of the cast members. It’s giving me more of an appreciation of them. These are some of the better ones from my point of view.
Jon Bernthal (Shane Walsh)-Day Zero
Jeffrey DeMunn (Dale Horvath)- The Hitcher 1986 version, The Green Mile.
Laurie Holden (Andrea)-The Mist
Michael Rooker (Merle Dixon) The Bone Collector, Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, Rosewood
Scott Wilson (Hershel)-Pearl Harbor, Young Guns II
Norman Reedus (Daryl Dixon) I’ll avoid the obvious BDS and Blade II- The Bad Seed, Tough Luck
Okay Boondock Saints/Walking Dead Fans time to go into a full blown panic, our favorite Irish Redneck, Norman Reedus is missing! I just saw this developing story this morning on Twitter so you know it has to be true, it’s on the internet!
Stop laughing Norman, this is serious!...Not!
Seems Norman and Daryl Dixon have something in common, both of them like to go off alone and sulk, at least according to the ‘unnamed source’. Daryl wanders off to the other side of Hershel’s property but Norman has to outdo Daryl, he wanders off into the jungles of Africa.
Excuse me for a moment, unplanned outbreak of the giggles happening here. You see it seems that this news site knows Norman is missing but no one bothered to tell him that he was missing. Norman thinks he is in Australia at a convention he’s been tweeting about to us right now! Good thing he has the internet to tell him better!
It’s really sad when you have to find out that you are lost in a jungle somewhere in Africa from the internet.
Thanks for tweeting us and letting us know you're missing!
Everything you see on the internet is not true so don’t treat everything like it’s gospel. Norman is not missing, no matter what Mr. Unnamed Source says. He’s probably having a good laugh right now, just like I am.
By the way @wwwbigbaldhead is his verified Twitter account. Feel free to follow him there and I’m sure if he ever really gets lost, he’ll tweet us.
Some of you may remember a show on SciFi Channel a few years ago called Lexx. I absolutely loved that show and had a real soft spot for the character of Kai played by Michael McManus. Talk about broken, the poor guy was dead, and had spent 2000 years as a mindless slave of the Divine Order. He was a weapon of Destruction a Divine Assassin who killed on the orders of His Divine Shadow until Kai regained his memory. Once he got his memory back he regained his free will and instead became a ‘hero’.
Regaining his memory and free will did not make things right for him, he was still dead, he was still a Divine Assassin and he was an emotional cripple. He never hesitated to say “The dead do not feel.” It had to be tough because he could recognize emotions in others and probably on some level had emotional responses himself but was just unable to deal with the emotions within himself.
Needlessly to say he was wildly popular with female fans, Michael is very easy on the eyes (even while wearing a beehive that would make the girls from the B-52s envious). But what I found appealing was always that ‘broken’ part of Kai. The way Michael played the role just made you want to fix it. He was a hero without ever trying to be the hero.
And now there’s another tragic ‘hero’ gracing my television screen each week, Daryl Dixon. Daryl is quite alive (and hopefully he will stay that way for a long time). But he is just as emotionally stunted as Kai but for different reasons.
Daryl could be a very easy character to hate. A bad tempered redneck riding around on a Nazi motorcyle? What’s not to hate about someone like that? But you don’t hate him. That’s a testament to the way the role is handled by Norman Reedus. Even though you intellectually think you should hate Daryl, there’s this human quality that shows through even when Daryl is at his worst.
Both Kai and Daryl are in some way ‘broken’ but they don’t dwell on it. They are both in their own way ‘heroes’ but more of the quiet type of hero. They aren’t Superman out saving the world in the bright red cape, they are more like Batman hiding behind the mask.
So what is it about these characters that resonate with me? I don’t know maybe they spark my maternal instinct, I can be very ‘mothering’ at times. Maybe it’s just a ‘typical’ female instinct to nurture. But whatever it is, these are two characters that have to power to get fans (female especially) to emotionally invest in them.
I came across a slideshow on my local news website entitled “20 Butt-Ugly Rock Stars” and while I do agree with the assessment in most of the cases (at least physically), their point was that all of these guys have a beautiful woman on their arm. I think they have forgotten that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Physical attractiveness seems to be the basis of their choices and if we are being honest, that is usually the first thing we look at. Yes guys, we girls look too! Every one of us has at sometime looked at someone and thought they were the most attractive thing God ever created, the catch is that your friend standing right next to you will look at them and think ‘average’ or even ‘ugly’. It’s personal taste.
Brad Pitt-Just Average
Women all over the place swoon over Brad Pitt, but I have never found anything the least bit attractive about him physically, he is just average in my eyes. I just don’t understand what the fascination is with his ‘looks’, he’s not my idea of an attractive man. Yes I’ll take one Norman Reedus type over dozens of Brad Pitts any day if we are just talking physically attractive.
Norman Reedus-Smokin hot!
But physical attraction by itself is not enough. I know that I have gone out on dates with gorgeous guys and before the date is over, all I wanted was to get as far away from the jackass as possible. Once he opened his mouth or I spent any amount of time in his company, he transformed into the most hideous creature imaginable because what was under that Norman exterior turned out to be a Ric Ocasek interior. I have also gone out with much less attractive guys and found that the looks really didn’t matter, inside they were truly beautiful.
The point is that for someone else, the beast may actually be the beauty after all.
Yes I am beginning to feel like a fifth wheel. I didn’t intentionally set out to be one it just sort of happened. See, I did a post about Norman Reedus, I think he is one of the top actors out there and now he has taken over my blog!
All of the top viewed posts on my blog involve Norman or his alter-ego Daryl Dixon in some way. He’s like a hurricane, just deal with the aftermath and hope things get back to normal. I guess that’s what I get for being a fan of Norman and The Walking Dead.
Oh well I guess there’s worse things in life than having Norman Reedus take over your blog. It could be someone that I don’t like or someone who’s skills I don’t respect. After all in my opinion, there are a lot more crappy actors in the world than there are talented ones, and the crappy ones get a lot more attention than the talented ones. I think it’s great to see someone who is talented and demonstrates his appreciation of his fans to get the attention for once.
Okay I am a die-hard Walking Dead fan…now. I was not always a fan of the show I was a fan of another show with a similar storyline, Falling Skies. Both shows revolve around a group of survivors in a post apocalyptic world. Both shows are dramas dealing more with the characters than the monsters which are pretty much just ‘props’. Both shows created a lot of buzz when they premiered but The Walking Dead has succeeded in keeping the buzz going. Falling Skies has fallen flat. AMC has kept The Walking Dead in the minds of it’s fans, TNT seems to have forgotten Fallen Skies ever had fans.
Some people would say it’s not fair to compare the two, but the comparison was inevitable. The basic plots are exactly the same, let’s do a show about how people survive when the world has gone to hell in a handbasket. Zombies overrunning the world-hell. Aliens invading and overrunning the world-hell. The difference between the two is a bit more savvy on the part of AMC in both marketing and casting. Both shows had a lot of build up before they premiered and both shows have talented casts.
Falling Skies pretty much ran it’s first season and said we’ll see you in the summer of 2012 and then…the sound of crickets on a warm summer night. Nothing. Where is everyone? Where are the teasers to keep us salivating after that great cliffhanger?
The Walking Dead premiered it’s second season opener, ran 7 episodes and said we’ll see you after the holidays. Then on New Year’s Eve they said hey just in case you missed something, we’re airing the whole series for you to catch up just in time for February when the rest of the season airs. AMC has kept the Walking Dead in our minds so we don’t forget.
AMC was smart enough to go after a name for their show. I know, millions of fans instantly recognized Norman Reedus from Boondock Saints. Well millions of fans instantly recognized Noah Wylie from ER. The difference is that Norman Reedus doesn’t seem to mind shamelessly plugging his show.
Sean Patrick Flanery and Norman Reedus
Noah Wylie? Well I guess if you turn over enough rocks you’ll find him. TNT should have been smart enough to bring in a name to counter the new fans Reedus brought to the show. I would remind TNT that Murphy MacManus was a twin, but I don’t think going after Sean Patrick Flanery at this late date would help anything. It would be strictly a desperation move and everyone would know it. And there’s enough ‘sibling rivalry’ between the MacManus brothers already.
The Walking Dead is also secured for a third season. AMC is doing things right and it shows. Maybe I will be proven wrong but I think that the axe is already hovering over Falling Skies. Like a lot of people I have lost interest because TNT didn’t give me any reason to stay interested.
I am a lifelong hardcore horror fan. Movies, books it doesn’t matter. I love a good horror film. I also love a good black comedy. Very few horror films creep me out most are just funny. The last movie that I can honestly say gave me the creeps was “Ju-on”, the original Japanese version of “The Grudge”. So now when I want creep me out horror I look east the to Asian horror film industry. But I want to talk about a little anthology series that I just started watching on Netlix called Masters of Horror.
I sat and watched 3 episodes back to back and with the first two episodes I wasn’t thinking masters of horror, I was thinking original kings of comedy. The first one “Family” starring George Wendt, was side splitting funny and by the plot you could tell that it was meant to be a black comedy. I like black comedy when it is done right, meaning it’s a black comedy because it was meant to be, not because a horror film simply turned out funny.
The second one “Jennifer” starring Steven Weber, was even funnier. I admit it was by Dario Argento, I was expecting a lot. After all “Susperia” is one of my favorite horror movies. Although I suspect it was intended to be serious all I could do was laugh at the complete lack of intelligence shown by Steven Weber’s character in the film. Sorry but there is really fine line between horror movie victim stupidity and complete moron. Weber came off as a complete moron, I couldn’t even grant this one the kindness of black comedy it was just a mess.
Well thank goodness I had seen Family first or I would have missed a true horror offering “Cigarette Burns.” Brownie points to this for the casting, two of my favorite actors, Norman Reedus and Udo Keir. I have loved Udo ever since I saw Mark of the Devil. But I have to say that this was truly horror. It’s a bit intense for some because it is truly a dark piece and it remains dark through the somewhat predictable ending. But somehow John Carpenter managed to refrain from adding those elements of stupidity that would have made the film funny.
The characters aren’t stupid, they are driven by an outside force. In fact the character of Kirby is even pretty smart (a rarity in horror movies); he opts to do the smart thing but is pressured into doing the stupid thing. The one point in the film where things could hove gotten humorous was Udo’s final scene. Instead of funny it came off as twisted, thanks to Udo’s skill.
I will be watching more of this series. While I think I’m going to find a lot more unintentional black comedy, I’m really hoping to find more gems like Cigarette Burns and Family.