Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Friday, January 27, 2021

might or might not
When Henry and Susan Samueli bought the Anaheim Mighty Ducks from Disney nearly a year ago, they promised not to pull that tricky Los-Angeles-Team-of-Anaheim maneuver that’s bedeviling the MLB Angels.

That didn’t mean that the name would go untouched. So, after feedback from fans, the team is dropping the “Mighty” from their names and going with the streamlined Anaheim Ducks, starting next season.

I guess the change represents a further distancing of the franchise from its Disney (and movie) roots. I’d guess a redesign to a less cartoonish logo would be next on the agenda (although perhaps the Ducks’ existing logo is too strong of a merchandise seller to abandon completely).

I was never as aghast over the Anaheim team’s name as others were; it’s all fun and games anyway. Still, I’m not much for adjective-enhanced team names — at least not in the major leagues. “Fightin’” or “Screaming”, et al, are better suited to colleges and the farm clubs. Sole exception: Color-descriptive tags (Red Wings, Blue Jackets).

- Costa Tsiokos, Fri 01/27/2006 05:42:56 PM
Category: Hockey | Permalink | Feedback

Looks like the Internet Movie Database has rejiggered the way it lists information for television series. Emulating TV.com and other sites, IMDb has finally broken up listing to per-episode subpages, with actors appearances cross-referenced therein.

For example, the entry for “The Simpsons” now includes a season-by-season list of episodes by episode titles. This is further broken down by individual episode pages, like this one for “Homer’s Odyssey”. What more, there’s drill-down information opportunity for each episode, including familiar IMDb staples like trivia and goofs.

Again, this is a response to what other sites have been doing; TV.com has had this sort of set-up for a while. IMDb’s arrangement was stale, and overdue for an update. Plus — and this is key — extra pages allow for extra space for ads throughout the site. That’s the key way to “expand” a website’s revenue-generating capability.

One geeky quibble: I notice that IMDb’s site structure doesn’t create a new subdirectory for the episodes, but rather lumps them into the Title area of the database. So, instead of the above-referenced episode of “The Simpsons” being found at “imdb.com/title/ttoo96697/episodes/homers-odyssey/“, it’s assigned to “imdb.com/title/tt0701124/“. Makes for a shorter URL, but it’s probably not ideal for under-the-hood maintenance of all that data.

Anyone who visits this site regularly knows that I write a lot about movies and television, and invariably link to IMDb while doing it. In a sense, this new structure will be great for homing in on particular episodes I might want to reference. Permalink-type pointers are always welcomed.

The main gripe I can see, initially: The Episodes listing seem to have supplanted the former Guest Stars page; for instance, the one for “The Simpsons” has been stripped of information. Big minus. The list of guest stars throughout a series’ run was a resource I turned to often, even for just satisfying minor curiosity about whether or not the actor playing some one-time character ever went on to do other work. I don’t see any easy way to quickly reference this information again; episode titles aren’t always easy to find. I can also do without the interspacial ads between clicks.

It’s always a little disorienting when a longtime resource like IMDb shifts gears. We’ll see if the changes sink or swim.

- Costa Tsiokos, Fri 01/27/2006 01:36:14 PM
Category: Internet, TV, Movies | Permalink | Feedback (3)

Nothing like a gay cowboy story to stoke the comedic zeitgeist. Brokeback Mountain’s increasing buzz is spawning a pop-cultural cross-section of comedic material based on the movie’s premise, in turn giving the film a near-iconic status (as fleeting as it probably is).

A sampling of Brokeback jokes includes a couple of gems from “The Late Show with David Letterman”, including these selections from “Top Ten Signs You Are a Gay Cowboy”:

8. You enjoy ridin’, ropin’ and redecoratin’.

5. Native Americans refer to you as Dances With Men.

And Nathan Lane’s “Brokeback: The Musical” spoof from last month is a keeper:

(To the tune of You’re the Top)

Gay Cowboy No. 1: “You’re the top…”
Lane: “You’re the chaw that I chew…”
Gay Cowboy No. 2: “You’re the top…”
Lane: “I wish I could quit you.”

If anything, the “I wish I could quit you” line might endure long after the rest of it passes. It’s short and catchy, and adaptable to a range of circumstances. Perfect for a sound-bite society.

I’d like to point out that I did my part to spread the Brokeback fun with my “Gay Cowboys, No Pudding” post, partly inspired by “South Park”. Sure, it wasn’t terribly original, and didn’t reach more than a few thousand readers (if that). But regurgitation counts big on the InterWeb.

- Costa Tsiokos, Fri 01/27/2006 12:24:38 PM
Category: Pop Culture, Movies, Comedy | Permalink | Feedback (1)

If you’re going to hold onto a smart-ass remark in search of an appropriate prompt, you’d better make sure it’s a real good one:

I thought, at the moment, I might have a shot at a dream I’ve had for ten years now: having a guy say to me, “I don’t like the way you’re looking at my girlfriend.” To which I would reply, “Hey, don’t you flatter yourself. I don’t think that much of your girlfriend.” Like a spring, it is coiled and ready to be unleashed smoothly and with a grin, whenever the opportunity arises.

Tim: I’m thinking there’s scant chance of unleashing that witty rejoinder in Ybor. If you really want to have that spring sprung, take a road trip to Miami. Guaranteed some South Beach guido and his hoochie-mama will oblige you (including the Part II about getting jacked up afterward).

- Costa Tsiokos, Fri 01/27/2006 10:56:49 AM
Category: Florida Livin', Comedy | Permalink | Feedback (4)

I’m occasionally amused by which particular jottings in this space will trigger a robust reaction from my AdSense displays.

Case in point: The morning after posting this recent piece on whether or not Bigfoot is properly categorized as an “urban legend”, I noticed both the leaderboard and the skyscraper on this page filled up with “Bigfoot Revealed!” type ads. No lie — probably three-quarters of the ad slots were occupied by textads pertaining to the man-beast. Talk about overkill.

And the fun doesn’t end there. A couple of these ads sported the headline “Loch Ness Monster”. And my favorite: An ad for a VHS copy of The Legend of Boggy Creek. I guess mentioning just one imaginary missing link opens the floodgates to all of them (and their movies).

I guess the Web is an ideal medium for reaching crackpot theorists. Still, I’d never have imagined the receptive audience was that big.

Since that original post is still on this site’s main page, those ads are still ticking up. And this post will keep them coming, of course. If they generate any clickthru action, I’ll be shocked.

- Costa Tsiokos, Fri 01/27/2006 09:38:53 AM
Category: Bloggin', Advert./Mktg. | Permalink | Feedback (2)