Steve Martin’s LA Story, Hannibal the Cannibal is back, and Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston Just Go With It

Feb. 5-11: Hamlet kills Gary Oldman and Tim Roth, Julia Roberts is sleeping with the enemy, Jerry Seinfeld’s got a new jacket, Pete and Pete go on adventures, Jack Black loves Neil Diamond, Justin Bieber is in 3D, Channing Tatum is Roman, everyone voices gnomes, and Ron Swanson gets cornrows. All that and more this week on Thirty Twenty Ten, your weekly look back on the week that was 30, 20, and 10 years ago.


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2 thoughts on “Steve Martin’s LA Story, Hannibal the Cannibal is back, and Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston Just Go With It

  1. Operation Condor. Around what years do you think were Jackie Chan‘s prime?

    Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. Is this the most famous work of absurdist literature of all time? Waiting for Godot is the only other one that I think even comes close.

    LA Story. What amazes me is how many movies I watched over and over again because they were on HBO a lot, not because they were a good fit for my tastes. Keep in mind this is a genuinely good movie but it is much more aimed at 42 year old me than it was at 12 year old me and yet I haven’t seen it in 20 years while my teen self must have watched it 10 or more times. That being said I watched this with my wife this week and she had never seen it before. With zero nostalgia goggles she loved it and thought it’s absurdist humor must have been even funnier in 1991 when it was fresher.

    Sleeping with the Enemy. What other genres have disappeared from the box office?

    I love Lucy. How common was a husband spanking his wife in the 1950’s?

    The Adventures of Pete and Pete. For some reason I thought this was an early 2000s show. What show have you thought to be in the wrong decade?

    Stuart Smalley. I loved this skit before I even knew what affirmations were. And for my money this is the sketch that gave us the second best SNL movie.

    Sarcastic clapping family of Southampton. This cracked me up so much at the time. This is 100% my golden age of SNL I was in the midst of applying to teach in Japan when this happened so it was huge news for me at the time because I wasn’t sure if it would hurt relations enough that I wouldn’t teach in Japan. What’s a relatively small news story that was big for you for personal reasons?

    Saving Silverman. What are some other films about people trying to break up their friends’ relationships?

    Friends: The one where they all turn 30. Being an old geezer of 42 I thought it would be fun to laugh at the Friends feeling that 30 was old so I fired up the HBO Max and watched this episode. Now, this is the first episode of Freinds I have watched in over 20 years. I love-LOVED this show when I was in High School and for my first few years of college but I stopped watching it around 1999 and just never went back and I’m shocked by how cheap it looks. Wasn’t it the most expensive show on TV at the time? All the sets look like high school productions to my 2021 eyes but when I was young I didn’t notice that at all. It all looked utterly real to me. I think that’s a broad general trend as I age – movies and TV shows just look fakier than they did when I was young in general – but still I’m amazed at the degree to which this show looks cheap to me. Guess I’m just spoiled from modern TV. The actual watching of the episod … meh? I’m just not sure I can stand to watch traditional sitcoms, which is a huge change given how many thousands of hours of my youth I wasted on them.

    Thanks to the popularity of it in its original run and its popularity in the age of streaming, it looks like roughly a quarter of all Americans in all age groups have watched all or most of the episodes of Friends. So there is a decent chance that a random 55 year old and a random 18 year old could talk about the show and both have a fairly good knowledge of the characters.

    I don’t think there is a single show that started in the last 10 year where that would be the case.

    The monoculture has pretty much died but Zombieshows from the days when it existed are likely to remain cultural touchstones for at least another generation.

    The Eagle. This film is utterly forgettable, I watched it two months ago and I’ve forgotten it, but the concept of “Britain in the time of Rome is filled with savages” is examined in literary fiction a fair amount because as English speakers conquered around 2/5ths of the globe examining imperialism on their ancestors is an obvious go-to. Regarding Channing Tatum as having an accent … there SHOULD be accents in any film about Rome! The Roman Empire stretched thousands of miles in a time before the telephone or television and it conquered tons of people who were not Latin-sparks and the Latin-speaking settlers blended with them over time and that affected their day to day language. So The Roman Empire was filled with tons and tons of different accents from region to region and this was commented on in original sources (especially from people from the city of Rome). If you wanted this to translate to the English speakers should have some Roman soldiers talking with Deepest-Alabama accents and others talking like Jamaicans and others talking like Newfoudlanders. For some reason though we want them to all speak like Upper Crust Londoners.

    Dana Carvey song about how his SNL was the best. Usually my google-fu can find stuff like this but NBC seems to be better at scrubbing SNL skits from the internet better than 99% of most media companies are with their properties. I wonder why.

    How I Met Your Mother. “Oh Honey.” I wouldn’t have agreed with this before I watched my first Friends episode in 20 years, but HIMYM is VASTLY better than Friends to my 2021 eyes. What say you?

    Parks and Rec. Ron Swanson arguing with his past self. Anyone else use to write letters to their future self?

    You Don’t Know Jack 2011. I played a ton of YDKJ in college and I’ve always wanted to have an adult dinner partner where we play it but never have for some reason.

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