Starting this month, I’ve opened up the staff picks to be ANYTHING entertainment wise, whether it’s a song/album, board game, book, TV show, movie, literally ANYTHING that can be enjoyed.
Jason Soto (Host Whatever with Jason Soto, That’s Da Bomb, Yo!, Co-Host Between The Scares, Top 5 A Thru Z, CineGamer, Navigating The Multiverse & I Have A Weird One):
Kids In The Hall Reboot (2022)
Much like a billion other people, I watched Kids In The Hall on Comedy Central in the ’90s and holy fuck did I love that show. Was I a bit disappointed in their movie Brain Candy? Maybe a bit, but it was still KITH and enjoyed it for what it was. Now in this weird age of reboots and returning things from the days of yore, we get the return of Dave Foley, Bruce McCulloch, Kevin McDonald, Mark McKinney and Scott Thompson and this time they’re on a streaming service (Amazon) so they can be as dirty as they want to be! Fucks go flying, dicks are flopping, buttcheeks are show, gloryholes are mentioned, they just let it all hang out! Now is this reboot perfect? No, it’s a sketch show, there’s some clunkers and a few VERY weird bits, but I mostly laughed at everything and enjoyed seeing old characters mixed with the new. My favorite bit is probably the post apocalypses DJ and I’ll just leave it at that.
Lisa Leaheey (Co-host Whatever with Jason Soto, Between The Scares, The SibList):
The Way Down: God, Greed, and the Cult of Gwen Shamblin (2021)
At the foundation of every cult, there is something missing — belonging, family, belief. Then, along comes a dynamic and charismatic individual who offers the world to lonely people at precisely the right time and boom! a following builds momentum. In 1980, Gwen Shamblin, a woman who had once struggled with her weight, began her own weight-loss consulting firm. In 1986, she founded the Weigh Down Workshop, a program that purported to help people lose weigh while strengthening their connection to God. And there it all began… The Way Down is a fascinating docu-series about a woman in a male-dominated calling; she creates the Remnant Fellowship Church and fosters a community dedicated to God and to what she sells as a better life. Of course, if this was the truth, we wouldn’t be watching a docu-series about her.
And let not even get started on that hair.
Rob Branch (Co-host CineGamer, Top 5 A Thru Z, Whatever with Jason Soto, Lyrical Innuendo, InfoBlast & I Have A Weird One):
Grounded For Life (2001)
If teenagers need a reason to not have kids when they’re graduating high school, this show is the reason. With three kids, Irish Catholic couple Sean and Claudia Finnerty struggle to keep their sanity in Statin Island, NY. Normally things are fine, but when you add a grumpy old dad (Walt Finnerty) and a brother (Eddie Finnerty) well chaos breeds chaos. This dysfunctional family, dark comedy is casted amazingly with Donal Logue, Megyn Price, Kevin Corrigan, Lynsey Bartilson & Richard Riehle.
Pete Rangel, Jr (Co-host Top Five A Thru Z):
Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness (2022)
Recently seen “Doctor Strange: Multiverse Of Madness” and to me since I’m a big comic guy and Raimi fan loved this sequel much more than the original. Was definitely a geek as I watched it enjoying the Easter eggs in it.
Lackey (Co-Host From Inner Time):
Sparks-Lil’ Beethoven (2002)
My staff pick for this month is the Sparks album Lil’ Beethoven (2002). Often regarded as one of the duo’s finest moments, Lil’ Beethoven saw them eschew the synthpop/electronica direction they’d followed in the ’90s in favor of a largely symphonic/orchestral pop sound. However, their trademark wit remained intact as evident on songs such as “I Married Myself,” “Your Call’s Very Important to Us. Please Hold.” and “Suburban Homeboy.” Other standouts include “My Baby’s Taking Me Home” and the metal-adjacent “Ugly Guys With Beautiful Girls.” Lil’ Beethoven has recently been reissued on heavyweight audiophile vinyl.
Nick Jobe (Co-host Navigating the Multiverse, InfoBlast, & I Have A Weird One):
Chip ‘N Dale Rescue Rangers (2022)
The original “Chip ‘n Dale’s Rescue Rangers” ran in the late 80s and early 90s, and I was the perfect age for it. That show was one of my favorites as a kid. You know what movie was also one of my favorites growing up? Roger Rabbit. Now enter The Lonely Island crew (plus John Mulaney), merge the two together, and you get this year’s Rescue Rangers film. And guys, it’s fantastic. It’s so much fun. If you were disappointed by the small amount of cameos in Multiverse of Madness, well… this movie will give you what you want. But it isn’t just cameo-palooza, either. Yes, there are lots, but they’re all clever and well utilized, similar to Roger Rabbit (speaking of, he’s even briefly in the movie himself). The movie has heart and a love of animation of all varieties. The visuals here work together seamlessly. And I don’t believe you even need to have seen or been a fan of Rescue Rangers to enjoy the film, much like Roger Rabbit. It tells you everything you need to know, and being a fan just adds another layer to it, but it isn’t necessary. It’s funny, clever, and a big surprise for the year. Definitely give it a shot.
Bubbawheat (Co-host Lyrical Innuendo):
Domino Masters (2022)
Going for yet another staff pick that is pretty far off the beaten path for those who follow my other reviewing ventures. This month I had quite a bit of fun watching the Fox reality competition show Domino Masters. It wasn’t quite as fun as LEGO Masters but it’s not too far off. There’s a lot of artistry involved in these Domino displays especially when it comes to the domino fields that show off pixel style art. But it’s not all just dominos, they also have various tools and props available for chain reactions and other effects. The hosts are the most underwhelming with Eric Stonestreet as the host who is probably best known from Modern Family and has a very dad-joke style of humor as host. Danica McKellar from the Wonder Years is nice to see but her and football player Vernon Davis are very bland and generically genial. Still, it has many fun moments and some pretty big disasters with some premature topples that inject the right amount of drama during the builds. And seeing their designs go off at the end of each episode is quite satisfying.
Bill Szany (Co-host Top 5 A Thru Z):
Upload is surprisingly not as popular as it could be. It’s by far my favorite Amazon Prime show so far, but I’m a bit partial to Netflix. Upload is a show set in the not too distant future about a guy named Nathan Brown that dies very suspiciously in an automatic AI driven automobile. This is highly suspicious because car crashes are basically obsolete at this point in affluent areas where these cars are all over the place. In this future also when you die you can choose or a family member can choose a afterlife or “heaven” of your choosing to spend eternity inside of; this afterlife is literally a computer program that your conscience (or perhaps your soul even) resides in. Being that Nathan was not a billionaire, but had a fiancé that was by no means poor, he is able to go to pretty much the fanciest heaven available; Lakeview. (Not to be confused with the Lakeview neighborhood in Chicago.) Lakeview literally looks like a swanky New York Hotel and has a large beautiful outside area to roam around in as well. Nathan starts to fall for his “Angel”/ customer service rep, Nora. Angels are there when you need them. You just shout Angel and they are there to assist you. In life Nathan was a computer programmer so this helps him to access things he has no business accessing in his afterlife but it helps to come in handy while slowly realizing he was most likely murdered and in trying to figure out why. Upload is an excellent show that perfectly blends comedy, drama, romance, and sci-fi together. As of writing this there are two seasons available on Amazon Prime. I highly recommend it!