Saturday, September 30, 2006

How I Lost my Fear of Redheads (and Twins).

For those of you who don’t know me, there are a few things that scare the bejeebies out of me. They are, in this order, redheads, twins, Shirley Temple, and unicyclists, which on that last one is actually less of a fear of and more of a hatred toward. So up until now, my worst fear would have been twin, redhead Shirley Temples on unicycles—but that changed last night.

So what happened last night? Well, I went to a good old fashion barnyard stomp. Yep, that’s right. The star of the show was a sweet, little redhead from the western plains of La La Land—because in case you didn’t know—Los Angeles is apparently the new Nashville. Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins graced the timber roof and cinder block walls of Kilby Court last night and the show was kickin’.

Jenny and the Watson sisters stepped on to the stage with gold sequin mini gowns; the band was decked in jeans, tie-less tuxedo shirts, and suit jackets. They cranked up the amps for the tracks from their country-style, gospel-infused, indie-undertoned debut album Rabbit Fur Coat. And I will tell you right now, there was pitch-perfect harmonizing, super twang slide guitar, and yes oh yes, synchronized booty shaking.

Instead of a loud, obnoxious redhead, I saw a sweet little super-cutie who wailed on the guitar and sang like an angel. And the twins were actually engaging and fun, not creepy or alien-like. Let’s just say, I was into it. I was into it big time. And until my next run in with redhead twins, I think that maybe, just maybe I might be cured.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Tune in.

I'm a TV guy. I grew up with a healthy dose of Thundercats, Airwolf, Perfect Strangers, and even old reruns of the Dick Van Dyck Show. (Man, I hated it when he wouldn't trip over that ottoman.) Since then, I’ve grown to absolutely love exceptional television. Movies always come off as the upper echelon of Hollywood, while TV gets dubbed "the small screen". But I think it's way harder to craft a compelling series, than to captivate someone for an hour and a half or two.

So the fall TV season is always an exciting time. My wife puts together a list of new shows worth investigating, and we check a bunch out. This season looked very promising, seemed like a great line up especially from NBC and ABC. But I'll be honest, we've turned a bunch off after about 5 minutes of torture and for the few where we actually lasted through the pilot, trust me when I say that we won't be back at the either the same Bat-time or Bat-channel. This has been true so far of all new shows this season, except one. For two weeks now, I've tuned in to NBC on Monday night at 10/9 Central, to the new series: Studio 60.

Yeah, I'm not really a fan of the title either, and that was almost a turn off. But, I've learned my lesson from Arrested. (Quick theory: Arrested Development would still be on the air if it didn't have such a crap title.) Anyways. This combination of West Wing, The Whole Nine Yards, and Jack & Jill alums has proven to be totally intoxicating. For those of you who don't know, Studio 60 is a behind-the-scenes Sorkin drama, set at an SNL-style show, based out of LA, on a fictional network called NBS.

Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford are brought in as a crack writer/director team, with the challenge to salvage the network's flagship show headed up by Amanda Peet. The premise sounds all right, but I'm here to tell you the show rocks. With stinging dialog that's witty and fast, as well as classic West WIng Steadicam action, even after two episodes you already feel like the show is tighter than tight. If you think about it, each episode can showcase a week's worth of prep for that week's show. It's pretty brilliant.

Here's the best part. Perry is funny, but not haha funny. Whitford is annoying, but not irritatingly annoying. And Peet is sexy, but not dirrty sexy. It's like the writers figured out what we loved about these actors, and ditched what made us roll our eyes at them from time to time. Bottom line, it might be too soon to tell, but this combo could just end up being the perfect storm—so tune in.

Monday, September 25, 2006

...The Films of M. Night Shyamalan.

Okay. I know I've started this blog in the post-summer-blockbuster-afterglow, but feel the undeniable need to comment on a feature that—to this day—still sparks a rift in the carefully crafted sub culture at my not-so-humble place of work. Scattered sporadically around the studio, are small pieces of paper with a single phrase printed on them: "I hate the films of M. Night Shyamalan." They've been written on time and time again, "I love the films of..." or "I'm indifferent towards..." Apparently there have also been some songs written, rhyming M. Night's name with a number of unsavory items. So what might you ask has sparked all this heated behavior within an otherwise docile (ha) working environment. It was of course, M's latest summer flick, Lady in the Water.

I'll be the first one to admit it, I am a loyal M. Night fanatic. Few can debate, M. Night is without a doubt one of the tightest writers around. Every word uttered in his films has purpose, nothing is left to chance and we can all pretty much agree, this tactic has paid off time and time again. But what about Lady? Why has that flick turned even some fairly satisfied M. Night customers into song-writing Shyama-haters?

So here's the deal. I saw it, I loved it, and I'm here to tell you why. Monster, Zooropa, Dylan goin' electric... why do something different when you got a good thing goin' on? Was there a twisty payoff? No. Were we really, really required to suspend our disbelief? Yeah. Was it slow, and by slow, I mean way, way, way slow? Yes, yes and yes. So what was it that "did it" for me?

It's all about a commitment to quality storytelling. In this case specifically, bedtime storytelling. So this guy hits it out of the park time after time. Can ya blame him for telling a story, just because he felt it needed to be told? Can we sort of agree that he's earned that right? Think about it this way, M. Night's so committed to storytelling, he decided to tell a story that not even his studio was willing to tell, just in case there was someone, anyone out there who was supposed to hear it. Was half the audience asleep three quarters of the way through the flick? Sure. But let's face it, that's exactly what bedtime stories are supposed to do.

Friday, September 22, 2006

The Band Game.

So. In my line of work, I'm communicating with new and different people on a daily basis—clients all over the nation. And when it's time for a little break from all the work talk, you gotta relax with a conversation about something, anything else. Today I started talkin' music with producer at an agency in NYC. We each metioned a few bands that we're into, then I sensed it coming: the Band Game. Obviously, the next question was, c'mon say it with me, "So, have you ever heard of The So-and-So's?"

Why is it that anytime you just wanna have a casual conversation about music, it's gotta turn into the "
You've never heard the Whatchamacallits!?!" Followed by the retort, "Well do you know the Whosiwhatsits?" What is with the Band Game? I mean seriously, what is it about music that requires people to seek out that one band that no one else has discovered, then turn around and rub it in another music lover's face? Sounds crazy right? Can't they just say something like, "I think you'd really like the Whatchamajackets!"

So, as I was comfronted with this classic case of the Band Game today—outta the blue—the perfect response popped into my head. Ready for it? "I don't compare, I share." Ok, maybe it's not that cool, actually sounds pretty dorky. Nevertheless, I've now decided that this response will dictate my entire music conversation strategy. So if you ever cross my path, and wanna throw down on the music front, be prepared for it to not go too far.

Thursday, September 21, 2006


So, on the way home today, it happened. I saw my first 2007 BMW ///M Coupe in person. For those of you who don't know, that car is the re-release of the car I currently roll in. It was black, and no joke, my jaw literally dropped. Then I saw the goober who was driving the thing—yug. And it hit me, do I look like THAT when I'm driving my car—am I a pompous cool guy?
I FEEL cool in my car. I love driving it. But when it all boils down to it, is it me? Do I look like a jerk in the thing? OR, do I maybe, sorta, just seen like the kinda guy who just happens to love sporty German cars and maybe got a smokin' deal and maybe won't show off unless he's really provoked? Maybe?

Please say yes.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

It Begins.

Well, here it is, the first post in my all new, super-duper, mega blog. I've subtitled this blog "music, movies, tv and cars." Cuz let's face it, anyone who knows 'Kyality' knows this is all I really know. I'm the dude who grew up with a dad obsesed with German automobiles who made me watch the Ozzie and Harriet Show, and a mom who gave me Neil Young's Harvest Moon for my 12th birthday and took me to see Transformers: The Movie.

So please keep comin' back for my thoughts on media of all kinds and cars, which really just means BMW's. And finally, I'd like to thank Skylar for calling me Kyality and Matt for reminding me of that so I could name my blog. So remember this is not reality, it's kyality.