Pop Culture Week in Review: Open Letter edition
Recently, it seems open letters – writing to a celebrity but letting the media read it – is in vogue. Sinead O’Connor wrote a letter to Miley Cyrus about avoiding the pressures of marketing at the expense of art. Sufjan Stevens also wrote Miley a letter about her grammar. And then (Academy Award-winning actor) Anthony Hopkins wrote to Bryan Cranston about how much he loves/loved “Breaking Bad.” So, in the tradition of these celebs… I present my pop culture week in review as a series of open letters, addressed to the makers of pop culture from October 12-18. Here goes.
Dear Wes Anderson: Props on “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
I saw your trailer for “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” and holy over-saturated colors, Wes! I’m part of the cabal of hipsters cinephiles who love ALL your movies, and seeing the diverse crowd (your regulars like Jason Schwarzman and Bill Murray will be joined by other people including Jude Law and Jeff Goldblum) just helps add to the intrigue. So keep making movies like this, because I will keep seeing all of them.
Dear “Homeland”: Why oh why have you forsaken me?
Your first season was one of the best seasons of television I’ve ever viewed. Your themes of vigilance, paranoia, and surveillance were perfect for the sentiment of our times. Carrie was a brilliant CIA analyst with some secrets, which allowed her to be the only one to see the truth. And Brody, a man with even more secrets, felt alienated, finding an odd connection with the very woman hunting him. All the while, a threat loomed over everyone keeping viewers on the edge of their seats.
Now, you suck. You just suck. And I continue to watch (mostly out of stubbornness now, I guess). Brody’s hanging out in a half-finished skyscraper with a long-haired pseudo-Morgan-Freeman-impersonating pedophile? And shooting up heroin? And Carrie – your paranoia and angst was endearing for awhile, but all this “THEY’RE OUT TO GET ME AND MAKE ME LOOK CRAZY” bullshit is just exhausting. And you ARE crazy. Somehow it’s no longer endearing.
Dear AMC: An Armwrestling show… realllllly?
Listen, AMC. You aired “Breaking Bad,” the greatest show ever. Now you’ve ordered “King of Arms,” 10 episodes of a bunch of different arm-wrestling clubs around America. Yeah, arm-wrestling clubs. Because apparently that’s a thing.
I get that you’ve brought on the producers of “Deadliest Catch,” which was effective at making the working-class interesting to America. But a bunch of people trying to keep their lives together by ARM-WRESTLING feels a little bit too “Honey Boo Boo” for the network that airs “Mad Men.”
Just stick to developing “Better Call Saul” and make sure it doesn’t suck.
Dear South Park: It’s okay to miss deadlines
This week, for the first time ever, you missed a deadline in your INSANELY tight production schedule, delaying an episode due to a power outage at your studio. I understand it must be disappointing to fall short of your goals, but we’re okay. I doubt the viewers of your show (I confess I am not one) will not mind waiting a bit to see the high-quality work you do (I know that sounds like sarcasm, but I genuinely do respect the work you guys do at satirizing our society while working tirelessly to crank out episodes in a timely manner).
Dear “Glee”: Good for you for hanging it up.
On the heels of a maudlin episode saying goodbye to character Finn Hudson (but really actor Cory Monteith), you announced this week that next season will be your last. It’s been a hell of a run. A roller-coaster, some would say, not just emotionally but in terms of quality. But hey – you still get ratings and it must be tempting to drag this thing out and get some more money. But the honorable thing to do would be to go out before the quality gets terrible, your cast members hit their forties, and you run out of Lady Gaga songs to cover.
Dear Tom Hanks: Thanks for making “Big 2” with Sandra Bullock for 151 seconds.
This video of you and Sandra Bullock recreating the “Chopsticks” scene from “Big” makes me so happy. Thanks for being rad and still goofing around even though that movie came out 25 years ago.
Also, I heard this week that you have diabetes. That’s so sad! You and Wilford Brimley should go out for coffee sometime.
Dear the “Chinese Food” girl: You’ve made a huge mistake
After Rebecca Black became the laughing stock of western civilization, you should’ve known making terrible music with this music video service was a bad idea.
Also, dear America: stop making things like this viral. You’re only encouraging them.
Dear Anthony Hopkins: I love “Breaking Bad” too
Your open letter to Bryan Cranston represents all the things that I loved about the show. You guys should do a buddy cop movie together.