Open Thread for January 8, 2010

Good day, Overthinkers! How go those New Years’ resolutions? That poorly, huh? Don’t worry – we still love you. In award show news – is it that time again? – Twilight, “How I Met Your Mother” and Taylor Swift were … Continued

Good day, Overthinkers! How go those New Years’ resolutions? That poorly, huh? Don’t worry – we still love you.

In award show news – is it that time again? – Twilight, “How I Met Your Mother” and Taylor Swift were big winners at last night’s People’s Choice Awards. Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson lost out to Sandra Bullock and Johnny Depp, respectively, for Favorite Actress / Actor nods. For the first time this century, democracy works! (Twice if you count the black President thing)

Question: The fascination with “giving the people a choice” in entertainment is relatively recent in human history (Hall of Fame ballots, the People’s Choice awards, American Idol voting, etc). If we lived during the Roman Empire, how would the big stars of the day have been nominated for awards? How about the Dark Ages? The Byzantine Empire?

At long last, one of the great comedians of our time meets Hugh Laurie.

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES), favorite of geeks worldwide, opened this week in Vegas (baby). Big tech news includes the debut of Google’s Nexus One (not going to link to it; just go to the Google homepage), its Android-ready smartphone, and the buzz about Apple’s new tablet computer, or “slate.” Also, the presence of Lady Gaga, Polaroid’s new creative director for specialty imaging products. Not making that up, people; we’re not that clever.

Question: What eye-grabbing pop star – of this or any era, really – deserves a promotional title at a major electronics corporation?

Shake it like, shake it like, no you can't shake the PO-LAROID! (It develops automatic)

And finally, the Directors Guild of America announced their nominees for best film of the year. The films honored are The Hurt Locker (Kathryn Bigelow), Precious (Lee Daniels), Up in the Air (Jason Reitman), Inglourious Basterds (Quentin Tarantino) and There’s Something About Cat People (James Cameron). We here at Overthinking It are still waiting on our DGA and AMPAS ballots; probably just a matter of time. You know how the post office is. What with the snow and all.

Question: Best film of the year of those five, OR best film which was not on that list!

Costume dramas are a toss-up at awards season.

Answer these questions, or propose your own! This is your … Open Thread!

9 Comments on “Open Thread for January 8, 2010”

  1. Tom #

    Weren’t the gladitorial contests of ancient Rome the original “People’s Choice Awards?”


  2. Darin #

    Life has been pretty shitty here, maybe somebody can feel better about my hurt. Sie la vie.

    There was once an article in the New York Times relating how monkeys who lost in a fight against a more dominant male would often go masturbate. The article then related how strip clubs of New York would see increased sales in down times and vice versa. (I’ve been told that the strip club scene in New York has totally changed due to legislation.)

    What does this have to do with OverThinking It and the Open Thread, you ask?

    Every year the Consumer Electronics Show (CES, referenced above) is on the same weekend as the Adult Entertainment Expo, or maybe the Adult Entrainment is on the Geek show. This has happened, almost continuously, since the 90’s. Porn stars making a side buck??? Not at all, actually it’s big money.

    There are many connections between porn and consumer electronics (no, I don’t mean vibrators)

    The betamax vs VHS wars were key to porn industry income at the time, the porn industry’s choice of VHS was a financial blight on Sony.

    Video phones in the 1980s were used had declining sales and then rebounded before dying. The reason for the rebound, porn.

    Streaming internet technology, IPTV, and other video on demand technologies have considerable consumption from porn.

    iPhone and other smartphones have video, porn maybe?

    But, alas, the iPhone is not available for purchase currently in New York due to oversaturation. I guess the stock brokers will have to dust off their VHS tapes.


  3. perich OTI Staff #

    @Tom: not really. The “winner / loser” came down to something other than popular acclaim. Unless you mean the Emperor giving the thumbs up or thumbs down.


  4. Gab #

    The totally nerdy scholar in me says each era would probably have spread word of nominations via the dominant religion. The fecitious prat in me says in Rome, they would have sent it with the wine and olive oil; in the Byzantine Empire, with some weaves; and in the Dark Ages, word of mouth, since that makes things spread like the plague. (Note: I bet if this had been the Oscars, they would have given best talk show host to Oprah since she’s “retiring” as a way of being politically correct or some other totally cockamamie reason.)

    Hm, pop icon with an electronics company contract… Nicoli Machiavelli. Or Princess Peach. Or maybe both. At the same time.

    I have only seen two of the nominees, but I definitely prefer _The Hurt Locker_. That movie was/is spectacular. I know I just talked about it elsewhere, but I genuinely think _500 Days of Summer_ was one of the best (new) movies I have seen in the past year. Well-acted, pretty, inventive, engaging… ::shrug:: Best OLD movie I have seen (for the first time) was the original _12 Angry Men_.


  5. Gab #

    Argh, and I meant “Niccolo.” Stupid auto-correct kicks in when I don’t want it to sometimes, although why it doesn’t recognize that is beyond me. It thinks iPhone is a word, for crying out loud…


  6. cat #

    I think we’re all failing to realize the most important point of this article, which is that for that photo to have been taken some crazy person on a seating committee put Hugh Laurie next to Carrie Underwood. As the People’s Choice Awards might be the one awards show I didn’t sit through…and mind you I was too lazy to change the channel when the Carrie Underwood Holiday Special came on…does anyone know why this would have happened?

    I guess in ancient times, we would have had to rely on the Roman Senate or various other select groups to decide our awards. Really, as it is now. I don’t think any award show can say that it asks every member of the population like my fiercely anti-computer former teachers, or that woman who stands in the middle of the street screaming about talking squirrels and scaring small children and everyone else. But I digress.

    @gab. Really, you should be upset about the lack of attention to detail. No accent on the “o”? For shame auto-correct. For shame.


  7. Gab #

    @Cat: You’re right, the letter thing does bother me, but I’m not smart enough to know how to make accents and thingies over letters in text boxes like the ones here without copy-pasting them from somewhere else. And I’m too lazy to go to the trouble. Alas, the auto-correct turns it into “Nicoli,” so either way, I’m wrong. Again… I’m sorry.

    I fail at life, don’t I?

    But, I don’t think you’re wrong about the Senate in Rome. Clearly representational democracy is more successful and practical than direct when the pool of voters is large- that’s why Athenian democracy failed, and that’s why Crazy Squirrel Lady doesn’t vote. ;p


  8. Trevor #

    I don’t remember making any of the choices for the People’s Choice Awards. Therefore, the results are 75% correct at best.

    Inglourious Basterds is just the most fun I’ve had at a movie in a long time, so that’s my vote. I liked Up In the Air, but I’m a little sick of movies being released in December just to qaulify for awards when a lot of good movies (and some admittedly shitty ones, to be fair) come out during the rest of the year, so I wouldn’t give it the honor of best picture. (500) Days of Summer, while not necessarily “Oscar-worthy”, was a nice take on the traditional rom-com as we’ve come to know them. All of them pale in comparison to “Miss March,” however…I’m kidding.


  9. Trevor #

    @Gab: Crazy Squirrel Lady does vote; she’s a registered member of the Silly Party (Monty Python reference)


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