Separated At Birth: Jeri Ryan & Cynthia Watros

I’m not sure there’s enough here, quite frankly, but I’m willing to put (digital) pen to (virtual) page and see who agrees and who dissents.

Both blonde actresses who’ve been on a few popular/cult TV shows, this is basically a comparison of characters: Ryan normally portrays sexy, unattainable women and Watros portrays sexy, attainable, girl-next-door characters.

At least that’s my reading of things. Feel free to agree, disagree or ignore at your leisure.

Tale of the tape:

 Jeri RyanCynthia Watros
Jeri Ryan
Jeri Ryan
Cynthia Watros
Cynthia Watros
DOBFebruary 22, 1968September 2, 1968
Height5′ 8″5′ 7″
Brush with infamyRumors & innuendo during her divorceDrunk driving

Happy Monday!

Me vs Man vs Food

This is not a diatribe about my current dietary habits. No.

This is a brief, silly post about The Travel Channel’s excellent distraction, Man vs Food.

If you’re not already a viewer, it’s a direct ripoff competitor to Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins & Dives, affectionately referred to by it’s spiky-haired host, Guy Fieri, as “Triple D”. [“Parenthetically,” he said (in brackets no less), “Jenn had some co-workers featured in the Atlanta-centric episode of D3 last year.”]

On Man vs Food the host, Adam Richman, is a little less “alternative” than Guy – no spiky hair, distracting jewelry or bowling shirts – but he does play the role of the slightly pudgy Everyman in search of generous portions and big flavors.

Anyhow, I’m always jazzed about new episodes. They literally make my Wednesday night(cap). Sad, no?

This particular photo of tonight’s episode put me back on my “separated at birth” train of thought, which I won’t derail with a full post but I will respond1 thusly2.

You’re welcome.

So, watch Man vs Food if you don’t already. As a recovering glutton, I’m living vicariously through Adam – his exploits, his travels and his voracious, sweaty overindulgences.

That came out wrong.

What I mean is this: it’s always nice to see some schlub get their grub on, especially when the meals are super-spicy or cartoonishly gargantuan.

Now, the footnotes:

1 Patton Oswalt
2 I know, right?
3 This was not a footnote, but a “cubed” reference.

And, obviously, these are my own, personal opinions and not necessarily those of my employer.

Bon Appetit!

Mad Men Myself

As those who read this blog know, I was late to the Mad Men party, having missed the first season during its initial run, but catching up in the run-up to Season Two sometime around the Twitter debacle and a marathon on AMC.

Once I fell into the show, I fell hard. I really got my fandom tweaked when I bought a cartoonish/caricature t-shirt of Joan and linked to the amazing, kitschy artwork of “Dyna Moe” and then I went dressed as Don Draper for Halloween.

Today there’s a new toy for the aspiring 60’s-era copywriter and slavering Mad Men fan: Mad Men Yourself. This is by no means a new or novel idea, but it’s well-executed and it definitely ties together my love and yearning for the show, a very specific visual kitsch and the propensity for folks to decorate their online social spaces with bits of pop culture accoutrements.

Well done, AMC.

I’m not the first to notice the trend, but I predict I’m hardly from the last person, either.

Here’s the output of my efforts, for those that haven’t seen my new Twitter icon or Facebook profile pic yet:

Me as a "Mad Men" era Madison Avenue creative type. Note the facial hair, glasses and coffee. Also, did no one rock the full Van Dyke? Just the goatee? Seriously?

For as good as the Mad Men Yourself experience is, I’m kind of miffed that not everyone can participate in AMC’s other cool Mad Men promotion of the moment, their online Casting Call. Seems you have to visit the retail location of their promotional partner, Banana Republic, to get a code to participate, which earns them the big, read FAIL stamp.

These would be my winning entries, should AMC choose to let me participate:

Me as Don Draper

Me as Don Draper

Is my fealty to mentioning your programming, watching & blogging religiously and giving a shout out to your promotional partner not enough? Give me a call when you’re ready to notify me that I’ve won.


Oh, and Season 3 of Mad Men premieres Sunday, August 16 @ 10pm.

Missing Gilmore Girls

I came to grips with my love (and public embrace) of the show Gilmore Girls some time ago, but I’m not “out” at work. Or, rather, I’m not out with my current group of co-workers because:

  1. I’m in a different group since the show has ended
  2. People don’t often talk about being fans of cancelled series, even if you work in TV. ๐Ÿ˜‰

During a meeting with some very fine folks about a week and a half ago the subject of fandom was heartily discussed and I admitted my show-crush on Gilmore Girls to the assembled group.

As a matter of fact, it was more involved than that. The actual topic at hand was how television networks promote digital initiatives and I actually used the phrase “Rory Gilmore Sex Boat“.

In a meeting room.
With my boss present.
And several other VPs.

Hold your applause.

Anyhow, talking about the show in that way has made me nostalgic (if that’s possible for a show that hasn’t been gone long) for the fast-paced, witty banter and esoteric pulp culture references of Gilmore Girls. Eager to get a fix I quickly found out that actress Keiko Agena (Rory’s friend and punk drummer Lane Kim) is on Twitter.

Big surprise there, since Twitter seems to be the de facto home for any and all celebrities these days – big or small.

Keiko isn’t much of a microblogger, but I still feel more connected to some of the quirkier, music-oriented bits of the show for following her.

Bonus points: Gilmore Girls characters on Twitter (run by fans who won’t let the story end): (via Gilmore Girls News/@Gilmore_Fan)

Not all of the accounts are very active at all, but the prospect of even just a little of that old Stars Hollow magic is enough of a spark for me.

I think my fandom for the show is actually quite passive.

I watched a similar show (in my mind) – Northern Exposure – when I was in middle/high school and I have to admit that I never watched Ed, but both of those shows had large, ensemble casts, a semi-outsider lead and quaint, small-town backdrop, so maybe it’s a formula for a “trend” fandom, but if it is, it’s not very trendy right now.

I’m just astounded that after all this time, the cancellation and oodles of web searches, I’m still number one and people still seem to notice, care and give me props.

My one hope – in this blog post and in the job setting that lead to the discussion of the Gilmore Girls – is that I treat fans the right way because, in my heart of hearts, I’m a fan too.

I miss you Stars Hollow and Gilmore Girls, but you’re only a tweet or blog post away.

Lost: Some Like it Hoth

Before I begin my recap, here’s a very useful Lost timeline via It works both episodically and chronologically, but doesn’t shed too much light on the whole “when is it now” of the Ajira survivors, though I like what Will had to say about that last week.

On to the bullets:

  • Numbers!
  • 3:16 (Ajira Flight number) on the microwave in the opening scene that gets echoed in the timecode – 3:17 – of the beta recorder in the next scene.

    The original numbers – 4 8 15 16 23 42 – being built upon the strange magnetic source of The Swan.

    I also really dug the reference to the Flight 815 crash cover-up when Miles identifies what Felix knew at the time of his death. What a great “test” by Naomi and it’s awesome that the documents discussed end up on the boat with Miles et al.

  • Bram!
  • The burly gentleman who abducted Miles prior to his taking the boat journey was also present in last week’s episode, at Ilana’s side brandishing a weapon.

    The fact that he was anti-Widmore in the past makes me completely re-think my prior judgement of Ilana. Maybe she works for Ben (or the island? the others?) and is on the island to counteract the effects of the boat people/Ben’s island movement/Locke’s island movement.

    Maybe – just maybe – she works for Locke?

    In any event, things are more complicated than even I had initially thought.

  • Empire!
  • If Hurley hadn’t waxed poetic about Luke discovering the truth about Vader in Empire I was going to draw the comparison of Miles to Luke and Dr. Chang to Vader, but one of Hurley’s roles on the show is to act as the
    voice of the audience, so it probably wouldn’t have seemed so groundbreaking/earth-shattering.

    I will give Lost props for referencing the best movie of either trilogy and for trashing on Ewoks. Ewok trivia: the word “Ewok” is never spoken in Return, which means all of us who grew up with the films and especially the toys are victims of the marketing machine that is George Lucas. None of us should have that wasted brain cell storing the name of this furry little bastards!

    But I digress.

    I’m thinking there’s something to Naomi’s description to Miles that the island has many “deceased individuals residing on it”. Not sure what this has to do with Lost canon OR Empire, but it does bear repeating.

  • Ann Arbor!
  • Another Michigan reference and hopefully we’ll get to see the DeGroots soon, but we did get to see the return of Faraday.

    We knew he was coming back since one of his flashes sees him working directly on the construction of one of the stations (it could have been The Swan but I think it was The Orchid).

    Which makes me wonder about time travel and whether this is Faraday’s past (pre-boat) or present, but he did know Miles so maybe the events are happening for him AFTER Charlotte’s death/Locke’s island movement?

    I really don’t know. You tell me.

    Also: Dr. Chang was reading a book on polar bears to a young Miles. I love all the small nods to early season touchpoints.

  • Songs!
  • It Never Rains in Southern California by Albert Hammond
    Love Will Keep Us Together by The Captain and Tennille

Random links to end the post:

Hope you enjoyed this week. Leave a comment and I’ll see you next week.

UPDATE: I forgot to mention the summer camp-style “color war” from the preview of the coming weeks’ episodes, but isn’t it interesting that the scientists (like Radzinsky and Faraday) get black jumpsuits while everyone else has on khaki? Also, why the disdain from Chang for the polar bear experimentation and some of his Ann Arbor (DeGroot) colleagues?

Curious to hear what you have to say.