Posts filed under 'Charts'

TV Nerds: From Brian Krakow to Tina Fey

I was reading this article that Juliana Hatfield wrote about her song Make It Home — better known as “that song she played when she starred as the homeless teenager/dead girl/angel on My So-Called Life way back when.” It’s an interesting article, not only because it talks about the origin of the song and the way she approached her first-time acting role, but also because she gives a little insight on famed singer/actor/punching bag-for-hipsters Jared Leto.

Even though he isn’t mentioned at all in the article, thinking of My So-Called Life got me thinking about one of its most unnerving characters (to me, at least): Brian Krakow. Krakow was an all-too-real depiction of a high school nerd — one that doesn’t come around that often. Watching him with his blond ‘fro and awkward interactions is a painful reminder of being 14 and just praying you’ll be able to get through gym class without being humiliated.

Then there are nerds like Tina Fey — people who are smart and wear glasses and are, as a matter of fact, cooler than you’ll ever be. These days, nerds are fetishized to a degree where it’s harder and harder to try to be unironically cool. Keep in mind that “nerdiness” doesn’t necessarily imply the stereotypical Urkel-ian norms. Nerdiness can be defined by a general beta mentality — folks who did stage tech in theater or spent hours upon hours teaching themselves to juggle.

Conversely, there are also folks who are supposed to be cool, but aren’t. If you walked into a restaurant dressed like The Fonz, most people would beat you up upon entry. And not a jury in the world would convict them.

On that note, here’s a chart comparing the cool nerdery and nerdy coolness. Feel free to tell me who I’m missing.


10 comments April 2nd, 2008

Talent vs. drama

There’s been a lot of fuss about this season of Project Runway regarding the lack of drama.

I have to admit, this is kind of a lackluster season.  It’s totally watchable, don’t get me wrong, but the drama seems a little wanting.  If Christian wasn’t around to say things like a crazy egomaniac, what else would we have?  Chris?  Kit?  Elisa’s crazy ass? I guess Ricky picks the occasional fight and does plenty of out-of-nowhere crying…

Anyway, here’s a little chart plotting various cast members based on drama and talent.


1 comment January 16th, 2008

Disappointment vs. um… appointment

It’s a little more than a month into the new TV season and it’s time to draw some conclusions. And, given my known love of information displayed in numbered lists and clearly-displayed graphs, here’s a chart plotting which shows have delivered on their promise and which have disappointed. The upper left and lower right quadrants are our “surprise” zones and these five shows defied our expectations for the better or worse.

Some have under-delivered. Viva Laughlin could have been a new favorite, but stumbled right out of the gate. Not just stumbled — face-planted, broke its leg and had to be shot. Some have defied even our high expectations. Pushing Daisies could have been a gimmick-ridden novelty, but turned out to be an incredibly charming, one-of-a-kind fantasy.

Take a look and see if you agree with our placements.


7 comments October 26th, 2007

A doornail. Abraham Lincoln. A sea in Israel. A Grateful band.

May sweeps is almost upon us and that will likely spell R-I-P for at least a few of our friends on the small screen. Last year, we said goodbye to Misha Barton’s character on The O.C., Ana Lucia and Libby on Lost and, I presume, more than a few folks on 24.

This year promises to be no different. We’ve already lost Heroes’ Isaac, as he was crucified and lobotomized (in that order) by Sylar on Monday’s episode. And, from what I hear, the rivers on Lost’s remote island will run red with heaps of dead castaways. I think someone’s even going to die on Grey’s — but it seems like Meredith’s return from the dead may be pinpointed as the show’s shark-jumping moment, so who really cares?

So here’s a little charty on who I think will die versus who we wouldn’t mind not hearing from again. A few explanations follow.


A bit of rationale:

Burke – My grand “he’ll kill himself because he can’t be a suuuurgeon!” theory is pretty much dead in the water at this point. And as much as we’ve all acquired a distaste for Isaiah Washington, if they haven’t killed off him or another central cast member so far I don’t think they ever will.

Hiro – He will never die. Ever. And that’s how it should be.

Charlie and Desmond – I can’t decide if they’re trying to fake out the audience with this Charlie death stuff. Are they going to have a magical fate reassignment somehow? Or are they going to be all “you can’t fight the future” (wait — wrong show)? Maybe they’re going to throw us a curveball and have Desmond die instead. After all, he isn’t one of the original survivors and Lost loves to kill the newbies.

And Cristin helps me out with the 24 forecasts:

Milo – Milo is new this season and recently confessed his love for co-CTU employee Nadia. We all know that’s the kiss of death (heyo!), particularly since Nadia just stepped up as his boss, and will be able to put him in many situations where he could perish in the line of duty and he could feel suitably guilty.

Morris – Our favorite member of the Chloe O’Brien love triangle (Milo and his weird facial hair being the other), Morris was forced into a life changing Sophie’s Choice early on in the season where he was made to arm nuclear weapons for a terrorist group in order to save his own life. 24 would never allow death for someone who could, instead, live out the rest of their life under the crippling weight of such guilt.

Doyle – First, you are played by Ricky Shroder. Who elects to be listed as “Ricky” in the credits. Second, we like killing off “Big Name” season guest stars (see also: Sean Astin). Lastly, you are a douche, and people keep referring to what a lunatic you were when assigned to Denver . You’ll either make a large-scale mistake that you thought was ballsy enough to warrant the risk and die honorably, or Jack will have to kill you in the line of duty.

2 comments April 25th, 2007

Gay vs. Good

Recently, the AP ran a piece on gay actors and straight roles. You probably know the entire article without reading it — blah, blah, T.R. Knight, blah, blah, Neil Patrick Harris, blah, blah, gay actors stay closeted so they can get better roles.

It’s a sad state of affairs, but it’s true. In fact, I’m still sort of raising an eyebrow at George’s scenes with Callie on Grey’s Anatomy. It’s no one’s fault but my own, but whenever he and Callie have a spat (which — have you noticed? — every sentence out of Callie’s mouth lately is some variation on “I’m your boss now, not your wife!”) I just want him to take off his white coat revealing a rainbow flag cape. Then he’d blast off, breaking through the roof of Seattle Grace and leave a trail of glitter over the Space Needle.

Admittedly, though, this is just one more part of actors being real people. I raised that same eyebrow when I saw Jake and Heath in Brokeback. Or whenever I see Lindsay Lohan in a role where she’s sober.

In general, though, it would kind of stink to be a gay actor in TV, due mostly to people like me. Most of the really good stuff for out people is reality shows on Bravo (the gays have always been pretty well represented on reality shows). In the world of film, too. There are a lot of really bad gay movies out there — seems like our love of camp (the place and the aesthetic) has dug us a little hole.

As far as actually good, scripted shows for gay characters, the pickins are slim, so it’s understandable that you’d want to keep yourself ambiguous to score good, straight roles.

So here’s a little chart about good vs bad and gay vs straight. Enjoy.

(PS — this is kinda, sorta, totally unrelated. I don’t know if any of you saw MTV’s True Life: I’m Out, but it was a mostly horrifying affair. Aside from some smart, reasonably well-adjusted and adorable lesbians, a few of the men displayed devastatingly stereotypical and dramatic behavior. It was enough to make me want to run screaming to the nearest ESPNzone. Nevertheless, the morning after I saw it, I e-mailed Cristin in a gay panic and demanded she view it at her next opportunity.)

gay bad chart.jpg

1 comment February 9th, 2007

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Jeff Probst’s dimples trouble me. He’s got these dimples that are so deep that you’d think they would touch somewhere in his mouth.

And, despite the fact that he’s a really savvy guy and as good a host as Survivor could get, he’s kind of evil. Not just because of this new concept of racially divided teams, but in general he seems kind of devlish as he smugly defends the show’s new exploitative twist.

On this note, I’ve made a handy chart to help us sort the good from the bad and the squeaky clean from the sleazy.

Comments? Additions? Problems?

good and sleazy chart.jpg

1 comment September 5th, 2006


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