Matthew Wrather hosts with Peter Fenzel, Mark Lee, and Jordan Stokes to overthink Eye-talian Americans, tokenism and the minority experience, Zombieland, spoilers and violence w/r/t same, Reference Movies, and the meaning of the undead.
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For the sake of meaningless completeness, Italy has had 20 Nobel laureates, which puts it around the midpoint as far as Laureates per capita goes (higher if you disqualify tiny countries that have, say, 1 Laureate and less than a million people).
I’m honestly not sure why that second Wikipedia page exists, but whatever.
My favorite portrayal of Italians on film: Eli Roth, Omar Doom and Brad Pitt in Inglourious Basterds. (Joking!)
Hey, I saw Mafia(!) before The Godfather as well. We’ve got ourselves a small, sad group of people.
My favorite portrayal of Italians: The Don-Bot in Futurama.
My favorite portrayal of an Italian American is Pesto from Animaniacs. He’s Joe Pesci’s character from Goodfellas plus a whole lot of feathers.
I’d also like to point out that the US has the greatest number of Nobel laureates at 320 while the United Kingdom is the next closest with 115. Pointless jingoism, ahoy.
My favorite portrayal of an Italian American on film? Mr. Panucci, Fry’s boss at the pizza shop in Futurama.
And “Fido” is a brilliant movie. Billy Connoly as the titualar pet zombie. Carrie Ann Moss in a surprising apt turn as a stereotypical June Cleaver mom. It is abso-frickin-lutely worth a rental.
Another zomedy worth checking out is “Black Sheep,” which involves zombie sheep, and was made in New Zealand. (But not by Peter Jackson)
My favorite: Any Italian American played by Dom DeLuise.
SPEAKING of tokenism, I could rant and rant about the systemic and legally sanctioned mass genocide of my people as a result of Columbus. But, honestly? My own family has never really cared too much about Columbus. Whether it’s because he didn’t even know where he really was or because there are bigger, closer fish to fry, meh. So any rants I have would be about the settlers that landed on the mainland and British, Spanish, French, and U.S. governmental policies more so than some lost Eyetalian dude. We loved _The Sopranos_ but rolled our eyes and groaned, “Seriously?” during the episode where a bunch of angry Natives protested the Columbus Day parade. And yes, I realize some other Native Americans *do* take offense at celebrations of Columbus Day, and I wouldn’t deign to say their feelings are illegitimate or completely unfounded; it’s just that my own personal take is there are more important things to worry about, and since Columbus is long gone, getting your knickers into a twist about *him* is not going to do anything to help improve the situation now.
And in relation, I also think it’s ridiculous to say a person can’t speculate or analyze if they haven’t experienced it. Granted, having done so will add a level to the dynamic of criticism impossible to achieve otherwise, but in my own experience at “diversity” discussions or whatever, sometimes that outside viewpoint is necessary to tone down the levels of heat and emotion going on. And I don’t buy the “legitimate or not” aspect, either. Everyone has a right to their own opinion and the right to express that opinion, and, as Mill says, even if you don’t agree, you should at least listen because the internal and intellectual exercise you get in countering them or coming up with why they’re off is worth it, if nothing else is.
Racism against Italians in America: Wop. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wop
Just my own nugget (because I can?): What would it take for a comedic zombie video game? I’d imagine it would need some rather over-the-top ridiculousness in order to achieve a comedic impact as opposed to poorly done horror or action. The example from the movie Fenzel gave of a piano being dropped on a zombie is perfect: you’re in the tower and hear someone below you scream, and your options are doing nothing, dropping a piano conveniently hanging at the window, shooting a bazooka (with one shot in it), or, I don’t know, throwing a monkey down at the zombie. What do you do, WHAT DO YOU DO? And then, somehow, whatever you pick, the result is so outlandish, you at least smirk a little in amusement. I know I’d go for a game like that in a heartbeat, but I wonder if there would really be a market for it.
RIP Captain Lou Albano, who I had never heard of until this week’s podcast, just to find out he died today. I mourn the loss.
Zombies Ate My Neighbors is a zomedy video game. A little like Startropics, but with more of a sense of humor and easier puzzles.
the position for ‘Token Female Podcaster’ is taken? damn, I was actually getting up the nerve to volenteer my services for either this week or next. Coulda, shoulda, woulda right?
And I have to agree with Gab, any Italian role by Dom DeLuise.
Pete, explain to me how Blade is your benchmark movie. You’re saying that Blade is JUST BARELY equipped to deal with the dangers he faces? Look, maybe I’m thinking more of Blade 2 and 3, but I remember Blade as being INSANELY overpowered. Like, he could take on massive hordes of enemies, and never even get HIT. Wait, here’s an example:
He doesn’t even break a SWEAT!
Megan, I feel the same about the podcasts… I swear, I had a draft of an email admitting I have Skype now (but no headset) sitting in my drafts box, but I didn’t quite have the balls to send it yet. Snooze and lose, I suppose.
@Johann: Yes! Or just the Robot Mafia in general. “But what if management remains intragnisent?” “From the context, it is clear what you mean.”