Category: Popular Culture

Rob Gleeson

Network television viewers might be acquainted with Rob Gleeson as a charming second-banana in various national commercials. Aficionados of the Los Angeles improv-comedy scene know him as a charming leading-man in various stand-up and storytelling shows. Raised in suburban Milwaukee, Wisconsin, minutes from the Konik childhood homestead, Gleeson’s energy and visage are Midwestern unthreatening, which serves...

Daniel Koren’s “The Most Important Thing”

When a performance is difficult to explain yet utterly cogent to live audiences, something suspiciously like art is probably happening. In the case of composer Daniel Koren’s “The Most Important Thing,” a mélange of music, video, dance, and comedy, the results are wildly entertaining, formally provocative, and resolutely their own thing. That’s not easy in...

Honestly

Folks who begin sentences about themselves with the word “honestly” are subtly implying that there are times, perhaps many times – this particular time when they’re talking to you being an exception, of course – when they’re not honest. That’s why they’re prefacing their personal revelation with a qualifier, a certification of authenticity. This time,...

Poem: The Logic of Success

Find someone else to do the actual work for you While you sit in a chair Pay this person less than their labor is worth Add value to their labor by doing clever things Such as advertising and storytelling Conjure fantastical tales of how beneficial and sexy it would be to drink South Pacific water...

Poem: Newsflash!

Pay attention urgent alert this matters more than anything that’s ever been on any screen in someone’s pocket  this is the news bombs are falling somewhere in a distant town the mother-in-law still sports a frown weak-chinned tyrants wear a sequined gown and so much more so many rhymes and shmazzle and music and flooneyooney...

Rick Glassman

Soon America is going to be confronted with the peculiar talent of Rick Glassman, comedian and accomplished green screen thespian, when he joins three other comedians on an NBC sitcom called “Undateable.” The show debuts in April. In the interim, connosuiers of comic genius can experience him and his cohorts — Chris D’elia, Brent Morin,...

Pep Talks

These days every other person with a computer and a microphone hosts her very own podcast. Some are worth listening to, and some, like “Pep Talks,” require regular monitoring. Something brilliant and funny and true might be said, and you don’t want to miss it. The show, on the All Things Comedy network, is the...

Ron Funches

Some cats and kittens have it, “it” being that hard-to-define yet easy-to-recognize certain something. They’re touched. Blessed. Gifted. SoCal-based actor and comedian Ron Funches is one of this strange and wonderful breed. Large, adorable, and stoner-friendly, Funches’ drawling delivery and chillaxed energy is charming. But not monotonous. Funches peppers the mellowness with unexpected bursts of...

Late Quartet

Despite being handicapped by a complete absence of CGI natural disasters, murderous firearms, or human bloodshed, the feature film “A Late Quartet” is surprisingly interesting. You could say it’s an adult film — about four adults (members of a world-famous string quartet) playing adult music (Beethoven, Shostakovich), grappling with adult concerns (mortality, fidelity, honesty). Writer-director Yaron...

Hooray for Hollywood (Boulevard)

The whole world is worried about North Korea. We’re not. We think locally. The area around which we can walk or ride our bike is our concern. We’re civic-minded that way. Hollywood Boulevard is nearby. We walk on its sidewalks almost every day, often to access the subway, which serves our neighborhood with a Hollywood...