Watch Hüsker Dü meet Joan Rivers in 1987 and hear Bob Mould's new song

Above, legendary punk trio Hüsker Dü meet Joan Rivers and perform on her Late Show in 1987.

I have a special love for Hüsker Dü as they were my first club show, back in 1985 or so. (My first concert was Styx and, yes, that was amazing too.) Over the years, I've gotten to know Hüsker Dü guitarist/vocalist Bob Mould who is a very warm, funny, and kind gentleman. Bob has a new album, Blue Hearts, coming out September 25 and I can't wait for him to melt my face with another live show sometime in the hopefully not-too-distant future. Below from the forthcoming record is "Forecast of Rain" along with a classic Boing Boing Video performance/interview with Bob produced by the talented team at Remedy Editorial.

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"Temporary Fault": A surreal glitch during a Star Trek rerun on BBC One

On January 16, 1985, BBC One was playing a classic Star Trek rerun when something weird and wonderful occurred. They might call it a "Temporary Fault" but Sulu knows it as... paradise.

(ObscureMedia, thanks UPSO!) Read the rest

These classic TV title sequences recreated with stock footage are bizzarro

Comedian and filmmaker Matthew Highton recreates classic TV show title sequences using only stock footage. The results remind me of the Seinfeld episode "The Bizarro Jerry." Above, Highton's take on Friends. Below, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and, yes, Ducktales.

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TV newscaster alerted of thyroid cancer by viewer who noticed a lump on the reporter's neck

Earlier this week, Victoria Price, a reporter on WFLA TV news in Tampa, Florida, received an email from a concerned viewer:

"Hi, just saw your news report. What concerned me is the lump on your neck. Please have your thyroid checked. Reminds me of my neck. Mine turned out to be cancer. Take care of your self."

The viewer was right to be concerned.

From CNN:

In a story for WFLA's website, Price said she didn't know whether to panic or disregard the email. "My lovingly-pushy boyfriend, who is well aware of my predisposition to shrugging things off and pretending I'm invincible, forced a phone into my hand and I called my primary care physician to schedule an appointment," she wrote.

Her doctor agreed that was something was wrong and an ultrasound found a nodule growing on her thyroid. Price then saw cancer specialists at Tampa General Hospital and the viewer's suspicions were confirmed: Price's lump was thyroid cancer and it was spreading to her lymph nodes.

Price will have surgery to hopefully remove the tumor next week. She emailed a thanks to the viewer but apparently has not heard back. Read the rest

'The Wonder Years' but with a Black family

"Reboot with a twist" alert.


ABC has handed a pilot production commitment to The Wonder Years, a new iteration of the network’s 1980s family comedy-drama. It comes from Dave executive producer Saladin K. Patterson, Empire co-creator Lee Daniels, the original series’ breakout star Fred Savage and 20th Century Fox TV.

Written by Patterson inspired by his experiences growing up in Montgomery, Alabama, the new incarnation of The Wonder Years chronicles how a Black middle-class family in Montgomery, Alabama in the turbulent late 1960’s — the same era as the original series — made sure it was The Wonder Years for them too.

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Legendary comedian Carl Reiner, RIP

Legendary comedian, actor, writer, and director Carl Reiner has died at age 98. Reiner is best known for performing with Sid Caesar and Imogene Coca on the 1950s TV variety program Your Show of Shows and later creating The Dick Van Dyke Show. He also directed George Burns in the classic "Oh God!" (1977), Steve Martin in "The Jerk" (1979) and acted in movies and TV shows like "Ocean's Eleven" (2001), "Parks and Recreation," and "House." From the New York Times:

As part of a stellar supporting cast that also included Imogene Coca and Howard Morris, Mr. Reiner proved his versatility week after week on “Your Show of Shows,” which ran from 1950 to 1954 on NBC and established the template for sketch comedy on television. He played everything from a harried commuter to a frenzied rock ’n’ roller to an unctuous quiz-show host. But he is probably best remembered as an interviewer, solemnly posing questions to a mad professor, a spaced-out jazz musician or some other over-the-top character played by Mr. Caesar, and adding to the humor simply by being serious.

Mr. Reiner contributed behind the scenes as well. He took part in the frenzied writing sessions that shaped the show, bouncing jokes off the walls of the writers’ room with the likes of Mr. Brooks and Neil Simon.

“I became a writer because of that room,” he recalled. “I’d say something and somebody would yell: ‘What do you know? You’re not a writer.’ So I became a writer.”

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The time a man held a news anchor hostage on live TV

On May 28, 1982, Joseph Billie Gwin, then 28, took four people hostage at the KOOL-TV station in Phoenix, Arizona. He eventually surrendered but not until news anchor Bill Close read Gwin's 20-minute statement on live television with a gun pointed at his stomach under the table. Gwin watched a portable TV to make sure they were on air.

From a 1982 New York Times report on the incident:

The message needed to be broadcast ''to prevent World War III,'' the police quoted Mr. Gwin as saying. In it were other predictions, such as that that Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, would become President, and that on July 4, 1984, atomic bombs would flatten cities in Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Nebraska, Idaho and New Mexico.

Station officials interrupted network programs at 9:30 P.M. to broadcast Mr. Gwin's statement. The statement called on Johnny Cash, the country-western singer, to notify Queen Elizabeth II to evacuate London before the Argentines could drop an atomic bomb on the city.[...]

Mr. Close, 61, took the gun after reading the statement and put the weapon on the table. He waved the police away and briefly shook the intruder's hand. Later, he said, ''I feel that I was in control most of the time, even when he fired a shot into the ceiling. I think I'll go home and kiss my wife.''

According to Wikipedia, Gwin was "charged with kidnapping, assault and burglary, and was later declared insane. Gwin was released from prison in 2005." Read the rest

This 'Addams Family' mansion model is monstrously magnificent

It's creepy and it's kooky. Also kind of spooky. Read the rest

Freaky 1980s Leonard Cohen TV performance

Leonard Cohen performs "First We Take Manhattan" on Sweden's Kulturen TV program in June 1988. It's perfectly bizarro 1980s while also being so very Cohen.

Below, Cohen's interview on the same program:

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Watch Leonard Nimoy's 1983 TV documentary about Mr. Spock and Star Trek

In 1984, Leonard Nimoy produced and starred in "Star Trek Memories," a TV special in which he reminisces about Star Trek: The Original Series and the first two Star Trek movies, and teases the forthcoming Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984). Never one to be outdone, Captain Kirk released "William Shatner's Star Trek Memories" straight to video a decade later. Watch that below.

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Watch a documentary about Batman's Batmobile through the ages

From the stately and elegant Batmobile Cadillac seen in the 1943 movie serials to the latest militaristic models, this is the on-screen history of Batman's Batmobile. Of course the true high point was the 1955 Lincoln Futura tricked out by George Barris for the 1960s TV series.

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100 TV shows ranked by their final episode

TitleMax says, "What are the best and worst TV finales of all time? To find out, we examined the most popular shows listed on the Internet Movie Database (IMDB). We scanned the list to find the top TV shows that have ended, and out of that list of popular shows, we took a closer look at each TV show’s rankings both for the show overall and for its last episode."

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Supercut of TV shows making fun of Fox

How quaint "Not Racist But #1 With Racists" now seems. Read the rest

That time Ministry's Al Jourgensen recorded a Shasta soda jingle

In the early 1980s, Ministry's Al Jourgensen made ends meet by recording advertising jingles. Above is a TV commercial he soundtracked for Shasta soda that aired in 1983, the same year Ministry released their debut album "With Sympathy" (featuring Jourgensen's faux English accent). From his autobiography Ministry: The Lost Gospels According to Al Jourgensen:

“Before Sire picked up Ministry I was writing TV and radio jingles to help support our drug habits, pay the rent, and feed the baby. I did a commercial for Shasta and some stuff for Huffy, and every time I left the studio I wanted to kill myself. It really put into perspective what my dad had to go through, cutting off his lifelong dream to support a family. That’s what I was doing, and it was horrific, but it toughened me up. If you cut me up right now and put me on a plate, I’d be some tough meat. You couldn’t eat it; it would be toxic, tough, and chewy. No, there’s no cannibalism with me. The deal with Huffy came to an end when I gave them this song for a bike called the Panther, and at the end of this cheesy tune they wanted me to purr loudly into the mike. I said, “Fuck you. Get someone else to purr. I quit.”

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Every economics segment on the (British) news

In 2015, Charlie Brooker deconstructed economics news reports in this grimly amusing pastiche — a sequel to his earlier boiling-down of feature news reports.

I'd like to see Charlie and Emily Surname do this for Covid-19 updates. Read the rest

Angry clown not messing around

This moment from Modern Family, which just wrapped after 11 years on air, illutstrates why you should never delay clowns. Read the rest

"Seinwave," a vaporfunk rework of the Seinfeld theme

SeinWave by Abelard

In recent weeks, I've shared the joy of Seinfeld with my teenage son. To reciprocate, he's been turning me on to the myriad incarnations of vaporwave, vaporfunk, chillwave, and other desktop electronica microgenres of the last decade. Finally, today, he decided the time was right to reveal an unholy hauntological overlap of our interests: "Seinwave" (2015) by Abelard. Listen above. From Abelard:

Seinwave is a rework of the iconic slap bass infused pop-click theme of the classic Seinfeld sitcom TV show. Created on a whim, Seinwave holds its own as a funky, danceable track, exploring new melodies, sounds and hooks, whilst retaining the faded sitcom hues and tones that we all remember.

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