NEW "MAD MAX" IS ONE HELL OF A MOVIE SAND STORM
THE GLORIOUS CORNER
Story By: G. H. HARDING
SUPERGIRL WEARS PRADA? --- CBS debuted a trailer Wednesday for their just-locked-in Supergirl series (due to land in September). The trailer has immediately set off a wildfire of controversy, though, on two fronts.
First things first: the trailer portrays the Krypton damsel (played by Glee alum Melissa Benoist) working as an assistant of sorts to—of all people—Calista Flockhart (a.k.a., Mrs. Harrison “Han Solo” Ford) and still best-known as TV’s Ally McBeal fame), in what seems a fairly transparent parody (or, if you’re trying to be more French-sophisticate, an homage) to Meryl Streep’s iconic portrayal of Anna Wintour-esque fashion magazine boss Miranda Priestly in the still-terrific 2006 movie The Devil Wears Prada (which we just heard might also be turned into a musical, with recent Into the Woods co-stars Streep and Emily Blunt already saying that they would be up to reprise their roles for it). An unruly amount of social media posts decried the placement of Supergirl into such a perceptibly measly and mundane position. Let’s face it, even Superman’s alter-ego bespectacled snobbish Clark Kent started out as a newspaper reporter—not some spat-upon luckless gopher.
Second, the trailer drew a flurry of comparisons to a recently-aired skit on Saturday Night Live, called “Black Widow: Age of Me,” starring Scarlett Johansson, wherein her Marvel character of Black Widow is shown working by day at a fashion magazine.
The similarities are uncanny; but, as Mark Harmon‘s character on NCIS often says, there’s “no such thing as a coincidence.” BTW, the skit happened to be really, really funny—one of SNL‘s best in years!
For me, the tone presented in the CBS Supergirl trailer is almost light comedy, which surprised me because it’s not the kind of dark tone often presented in The Flash, and even more pronounced in The Arrow. At one point in the trailer, Flockhart’s character even responds with the following bit of dialogue, while posturing about whether she should be called Superwoman, rather than Supergirl:
“What do you think is so bad about ‘girl’? I’m a girl, and your boss, and powerful and rich and hot and smart. So, if you perceive ‘Supergirl’ as anything less than excellent, isn’t the real problem . . . you?” Ouch!
Nothing like a little controversy to start a new TV series, right?
Meanwhile, I think everyone should just be thankful that this TV series may finally wash away memories of the deplorable yet “so bad it’s good” 1984 Supergirl motion picture. Anyone else remember that box office bomb, featuring a cast of many including newcomer Helen Slater, Faye Dunaway, Peter O’Toole, Mia Farrow, Brenda Vaccaro, Marc McClure (who portrayed young newspaper photog Jimmy Olson in all four Superman movies featuring the late Christopher Reeve in the superhero role, topped by his fifth appearance here as well)? Even that film has gone on to cult-movie status, so perhaps Supergirl has more going for it than we thought? We’ll see . . .
STILL STILLS --- Stephen Stills has announced a month-long solo trek kicking off July 6th in Alexandria, Virginia and concluding with a two-night stint in San Juan Capistrano, California on August 4th and 5th. The tour will feature Crosby, Stills, and Nash alumni Kevin McCormick (bass) and Todd Caldwell (keyboards) alongside new drummer Mario Calire.
Stills' upcoming dates will be broken into two sets: one acoustic and one electric. Public on-sale tickets will be available starting today through the musician's website. A post on the site promises Stills—a former member of CSN(Y) and Buffalo Springfield—will perform "career-spanning favorites as well as new songs."
I am a die-hard Stills fan, though at times his shows have been erratic and often cut short. I’ll never forget the tour he did eons ago when his second solo album, Stephen Stills 2, was released in 1971). It was at NYC’s Madison Square Garden; it was SRO; and he came on late and staggered about the stage choosing from at least ten guitars onstage. I loved the track “Fishes and Scorpions” from that second Stills album. Once he settled on which guitar to play back in ’71 at MSG, Stills rose miraculously to the occasion and performed it spot-on.
I also love his Manassas (1972) set, the first double-album for him. That record remains total perfection at every turn.
CSNY's last reunion came in 2013 with a nine-song set for the Bridge School Benefit. David Crosby and Neil Young have continued to feud in recent months, but the latter rock icon joined Stills last month for a charity performance at the "Light Up the Blues" autism event in L. A.
MAX MAD AGAIN --- 1979’s Mad Max was one dangerous ride of a movie, from start to finish. George Miller’s unforgettable epic (starring the young and even-then-brooding Mel Gibson) reset the parameters for post-apocalyptic epics.
Miller’s direction was spartan, lean, mean, but undeniably captivating. He also did the two sequels, The Road Warrior and Beyond Thunderdome, featuring the incandescent Tina Turner.
Flash forward to now, when Georg Miller has re-booted the original movie (opening today), this time starring everyone’s favorite brooding newcomer Tom Hardy (says Miller, “Mel was 21 when we made the first one, and Tom was six weeks old!”) teamed with Charlize Theron as Furiosa.
Honestly, the movie starts with a bang and literally doesn’t let up until the end. I had trouble discerning most of the dialogue as it’s all trained on the action. With tons more money and filming time slated and ready to go in Australia and Namibia, the scenery is amazing. There’s also a sand storm that should forever cause you not to visit the beach.
It’s still one heck of a good (and relevant) story; still not sure of what is all means other than the future looks bleak.
I liked it . . . I really did.
JAMMIN' ON THE VINE --- One of our good sources for all things Long Island recently saw a fantastic group playing out at the Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard on the North Fork of the Island this past weekend. From what I heard, these guys really know and embody all the great songs from the "Classic Rock" period carrying from the late '60s to the late '70s.
Well, it turns out that the band is called Acoustic Soul, and the two guitarists playing last weekend and slated to play in the group most often this summer are none other than Edward Franz and Anthony Pomes from this columnist's favorite (along with THE FAB FAUX, of course) regional Beatles tribute band, Mostly Moptop.
Speaking of tribute bands, we've also learned from our source that Acoustic Soul is the brainchild of Tommy Doscher--who also performs as the "Robert Plant" frontman with the world-renowned Led Zeppelin tribute band, Hammer Of The Gods.
Playing in just one afternoon to what our source reported to me to be upwards of 1,000 wine connoisseurs, Acoustic Soul does it all. Whether it's Doscher's impassioned spot-on delivery of the Rod Stewart vocal from the great early '70s hit "Maggie May," or the seemingly effortless blend of vocal harmonies that the trio captures either on The Beatles' "Don't Let Me Down" or Chicago's "Beginnings," these guys clearly have their material down cold and know just how and when to heat things up (the back-and-forth that Franz and Pomes captured on their acoustic guitars when playing The Who's "Pinball Wizard" as the final song that day at the vineyards left everyone cheering and hungry for more). Since the group is slated to appear there often this summer (in addition to other venues and a slew of private parties), it seems to me that Acoustic Soul is the top group on the Island this summer (if you like your rock classic, and your soul acoustic).
To check out the group for yourself, just check out their website at: www.acousticparty.com. And if you'll be on the East end of the Island this summer (I know that's where I'll be most weekends), then look up Acoustic Soul's schedule at the Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard by visiting the Vineyard's site.
CLOSING NOTES: Up for the final Mad Men episode Sunday night? Titled Person to Person, it's got a bad feeling all around it. With last week's show ending as Don sits on a bench in the middle of nowhere, clutching a paper bag with all his possessions . . . it was an extremely dark moment. And I don’t think it’s going to get better. Stay tuned . . .
Frank Shiner plays the Fine Arts Fiesta tonight in Pennsylvania (along with Marshall Crenshaw and The Motels), he had a terrific time at Cumulus' Magic 93 yesterday (see pic) . . .
The Today Show's Willie Geist barreling along 8th Avenue yesterday with green headphones on. Hey, slow down a bit Willie . . .
Last night’s Blacklist season final e… very satisfying …
X Files re-union at Steve Walter’s Cutting Room this week; David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson…
RIP B. B. King!