A Couple of Random Thoughts

1.  Caught the Lady Gaga/Muppet Spectacular on Thursday, and I never thought I would turn off a show featuring the Muppets, but I did.  It was such a fucking hodge podge.  Green screened up the wazoo, sterile, boring, and thrown together.  The Muppet segments were spliced in at random moments and looked like they were done in half a day.  Lady Gaga had positively zero charisma, and was on-screen with the Muppets for about four minutes.  It was mostly her singing with back-up dancers in a giant wig, doing some extremely labored "banter" with Elton John before singing a duet of "Gaga and the Jets" (yep, that's what I wrote)... Both The Muppets and Lady Gaga have a wonderfully bizarre sense of humor and a pretty strong understanding of "SHOW BIZ", so this could have been wonderful, but I saw nothing interesting, and certainly no heart.  But to be honest, I haven't seen much soul from The Muppets since the Christmas special they did years ago where everyone went over to Fozzie's grandmother's for Christmas.  Which leaves me wondering who is in charge of Muppet projects now?  Whoever had the idea to put Lady  Gaga and the Muppets together deserves kudos, and whoever executed (in every sense of the word) concept, needs to be schooled.

2.  Tore through And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks, co-written by Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs about a decade before they wrote On The Road and Naked Lunch, respectively, and it was a perfect companion to the Daniel Radcliffe film Kill Your Darlings.  The book was a novelized version of the events surrounding the murder of David Kammerer, by Lucien Carr, with whom he had a very complicated relationship.  I do have to cop to the fact that I've never been a huge fan of the Beats work.  I love their philosophy, but some of the art that sprung from it seems pretty straightforward and lacking.  More of a "this happened, then this happened, then this happened..." sort of approach.  I can understand that back in the mid-twentieth century, when topics like this were rarely discussed, that this could have been revolutionary, but today? 

I highly recommend the film, as it's is atmospheric, haunting, complex and inspiring.  Plus, who could avoid falling in love with this little face?

Joe Hartman