Adam Sandler loves water, Oprah gives advice to Liz Lemon, and John Carpenter reveals all – Nov 2 – 8: Thirty Twenty Ten

Roddy Piper and Kieth David uncover an alien conspiracy, Gears of War 2 introduces the horde, the California Raisins hit the big time, Head of the Class goes to Moscow, Adam Sandler hates Gatorade, JCVD and Becker just sort of exist and it’s a big, BIG week for two presidents and a queen. 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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18 thoughts on “Adam Sandler loves water, Oprah gives advice to Liz Lemon, and John Carpenter reveals all – Nov 2 – 8: Thirty Twenty Ten

  1. I was also in middle school when I started reading the Wheel of Time, but that was when the second book came out, in 1990. I bought every one in hardcover since then, and it ended up being pretty good, even if it wandered a bit over 15 large books, and took until I was almost 40. They’re definitely more swords and magic and creatures than politics, like Game of Thrones.

  2. I was in middle school when The Waterboy came out, and it kind of ruined my life. I’ve had a chronic stutter since I was really young, and The Waterboy was of course the hot topic at school when it came out because Adam Sandler. Well, let’s just say I got to hear all my non-stuttering peers suddenly “play stuttering” around me as they quoted Sandler’s hilarious impression of a stutterer. It was even worse when my friends would do it around me hoping I would join in on the laughs, and I just kind of had to just to keep my friends.

    So yeah, fuck you Adam Sandler and fuck The Waterboy.

  3. A comment on last weeks episode: Pleasantville discovery moment

    My “Pleasantville” moment happened back in high school when we were assigned to do a project on my magnet art class on something to do with murals I think? It’s been a decade since this happened. The minute they said what the assignment was I immediately go into this tunnel vision trance on making a piece about an arsonist and the destruction they caused. The teachers noticed that and just let me loose on what I wanted to envision. To describe what it looks like think of any comic book cover of Neil Gaimens Sandman series with a bunch of miscellaneous stuff on the side. The result of the piece made me win ‘Best in show’ at my school with a standing ovation from everyone in the class there. This weirded me out for two reasons: 1. I’ve never won a competition before and 2. I got there late so when I ran in the exhibit as they clapped I thought they were all legitimately fucking with me because as an artist/creator you usually never see the good in your work just the behind the scenes shit you endure.

    This moment made me become more engaged into looking into more into art/comics/magazines that eventually made me become proud of the idea and passion that I worked so hard into labeling myself as an artist. Seeing Jeff Daniels character evolve from a man that has accepted being jailed into a routine to discovering and encouraged to work on a hidden passion is a great message that’s stuck with me as a person who is trying to not fall into the trap of a rut that destroys your creativity.

  4. A couple of things I was surprised that didn’t get brought up with Jay Jay the Jet Plane. The home video version of Jay Jay was a Christian cartoon with Bible verses and lessons of God’s love. The television version that ran on TLC and PBS cut all the Jesus stuff out to make it more secular. The other thing was just how creepy all of the airplanes look. Comparing it to Thomas the Tank Engine is unfair to Thomas.

  5. A couple of things that I was surprised that didn’t get brought up with Jay Jay the Jet Plane. The first is that the home video version of Jay Jay was a Christian cartoon and the television version that ran on TLC and PBS cut all of the Jesus stuff out. Also the faces are super creepy. Comparing them to Thomas the Tank Engine is doing a disservice to Thomas.

  6. 1988
    Presidential Election: Probably the earliest Saturday Night Live political skit that I can remember watching came from this election. Jon Lovitz plays a Michael Dukakis who loses and decides to use his last chance in the spotlight to host, “Dukakis After Dark” a swinging Hugh Hefner-esque party. If you want a sound clip: 2:35 is as good a place as any as it seaways into a nice Phil Hartman doing Ted Kennedy.

    They Live: Never say it in theaters. Never saw it in the 1980’s, only saw it drunk in college surrounded by a bunch of other drunk dudes. AND THAT IS THE ONLY WAY TO WATCH THIS FILM!

    Blaster Master: Another NES game I have fond memories of despite never owner. In these days of Humble Bundle where triple A games can be bought for less than the price of a comic book (do the math, it’s true) my kids will never know what it was like to run out of games to play. But when I was young, I had literally played every game I owned to the point where I no longer wanted to play them anymore. Hence the need for friends, so I could play games I didn’t own (Oh, and the basic human need for companionship, that too). A friend had Blaster Master and so it was always a treat to fire it up, although I think I always felt a bit of a letdown when I had to get out of the tank-frog.

    Elizabeth. I’m a huge history geek and was so even in college. The past is a foreign country where they do things differently, and that is part of the whole point about reading history, but the pre-Modern world is deeply alien in ways that us moderns tend to gloss over with the result that frequently we get a, “People With 21st Century Attitudes and Thoughts Wearing Funny Clothing”-style of historical movies. This was, ironically, worse the in the past (“Yonder lies da castle of my fadder da king”) than it is today (Rome and Deadwood feature deeply alien protagonists, for instance) and I think Elizabeth is a bit of a transition piece and that if it were made today, the character could be more alien.

    Water boy: This is the first “Classic” Adam Sandler film I didn’t see. No idea why. Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore, and The Wedding Singer were all comedy gold in my 20-year-old-self’s opinion but when this came out the whole stuttering schtick I saw in the previews just seemed weak and lame to that same self and I passed it by. I went on to skip every Adam Sandler film until 50 first dates and have yet to have anyone even try to convince me to give any of his films in that period a shot.
    The Office was my favorite sitcom while it was on, and I watched every single episode as soon as it aired, but I haven’t revisited it since. But listening to the clips you all keep playing makes me want to see if I can convince my wife to re-watch some when we don’t have enough time for the 1 hour shows that seem to be all we watch today.

  7. I watched the Siege this year for “Friendly Fire” and it was surprisingly a very prescient movie not so much of the depiction of Muslims, but the fact that the United States Government, especially during the Bush era and now, is acting in extraordinary bad faith. I mean Bruce Willis kills Lance Reddick!

  8. Diana – I unfortunately agreed with your feeling about President Obama on his election night speech. Nas-Black President rapped about basically the same sentiment.

    1. Also, I though Blaster Master was one of the coolest NES games ever. I never was really good at it, but I can picture that game’s box art instantly and rented it a bunch of times.

  9. Damnit. I’m sitting here in tears at my desk, hoping no one walks into my office for a moment, listening to that Daily Show call of the election in ’08. It’s astonishing to me, how far we fell in such a short time since.

  10. I want to shout out to Diana for the love poured on Velvet Goldmine. As a girl who grew up on a conservative indian reservation, seeing Velvet Goldmine on an illegal satellite dish after my parents went to sleep with the volume turned down to 3 was a trip. It was the first time I saw a dude’s dick and it was the first time I learned what it meant to be bi. Also, the soundtrack got 12 year old me heavily into glam rock and I became a huge fan of T-rex and Lou Reed.

    I still remember my thought process when a bunch of dudes started making out in the movie and my mouth fell open and I was like, “ARE THOSE TWO DUDES KISSING?!”

  11. Hearing Jason Robards being angry in that Nimoy trailer is so bizarre, since I only know him as the gentle doctor in “The Day After”. I’m so sad that Di and co will never discuss that movie, by the way, considering it came out in 1983.

    Late last year-ish, I bought some used vhses from eBay and found commercials for the Geraldo breaks his nose show. I’m soo pissed I can’t remember what dvd I recorded it to. I remember seeing the fight on tv and his broken nose when I was 5 and being terrified.

    I saw the first part of the Moscow Head of the Class episode back when TVLand/Nick @ Nite would show Head of the Class at 4am 15 years ago. It wasn’t very good? Dennis and Arvid get arrested for selling like, their walkmans to the Russian students?

    This is the most 1998 thing ever, but I remember my mom and I would go to this sketch flea market in Newport News to buy beanie babies around this time. Behind the counter with their personal belongings was some bobo ass looking copy of Waterboy on VHS.

    Ugh, Becker. Back in ’01 on The Daily Show, Vance DeGeneres was subbing for Jon Stewart, and Ted was a guest promoting Becker. Dude was soo rude to Vance. He was DONE.

    (thankfully, most libraries don’t catalog TV DVDs two discs at a time anymore. The one I work at finally pulled all those ratty DVDs and reordered the sets again, all together in one box.)

    As a reminder, we’re inching toward Craig Kilborn’s final weeks hosting The Daily Show. Unfortunately, none of those episodes are on the internet. I _might_ have his last ep on vhs. MIGHT. If I have it, I’ll send a tweet to the account.

  12. I turned 18 in 1998 and so it was the first time I could vote in an election. But it was ‘just’ a midterm election so I didn’t feel the need. That year Jesse ‘The Mind’ Ventura became my state’s Governor. He is one of Minnesota’s biggest embarrassments, and I vowed to vote in every election after that.

  13. Velvet god-damn Goldmine. That movie is awesome, and Diana (as always) did a great job talking about it. A couple of extra notes I’d like to add:

    The soundtrack is fucking incredible.

    Ewan McGregor is obviously playing a version of Iggy Pop, but it always astounds me how much he looks and sounds like Kurt Cobain by the end of the movie. I always wondered if that was intentional on Todd Haynes’s part.

    Anyway, thanks for everything!

  14. The Wheel of Time was such a huge part of my life. The series is finished. Robert Jordan tragically passed in 2007 and new wunderkind fantasy author Brandon Sanderson finished the last three books.

    I picked it up in 1999 when I was a sophomore in high school and The Eye of the World blew me away. I then voraciously read through all the books. There was even a time when I had an hour between school getting out and band practice starting, I’d finished a book and needed the next one, and the nearest book store was in a city a half hour away so I drove entirely too fast to get there, get the book, and get back in time.

    When I was in college I went to a signing for Knife of Dreams. That was the last book that Robert Jordan wrote solo. My friend and I remarked on how he looked a lot thinner in person than he did in his pictures on the books. It was only a few months after that last book tour that he announced his illness. I was glad I got a chance to meet him, even if it was me stammering something like “me like your books sir” as he gave me one of the most intense stares I’ve ever encountered.

    The series is sprawling, but it was a sea change in the fantasy genre. Up to that point the genre was mostly Tolkien pretenders or old fashioned sword and sorcery, and Jordan is the one who introduced political intrigue, playing with genre conventions, and presenting strong female characters. These days it suffers a bit from the Seinfeld Is Unfunny trope where everyone who’s come since has built on what he did so it doesn’t seem so new and refreshing, but it was groundbreaking for that time.

    And let’s talk about Jordan’s treatment of the ladies. A lot of people complain about his treatment of women. That they’re all shrill shrews who boss women around. This was deliberate and is part of the genius of his work. He’s depicting a world where men quite literally caused the end of the world thousands of years ago and women have enjoyed a place of power and privilege in society for those thousands of years since. I always laugh when I see people complaining, because his tactic was to basically write a world where women had the same attitude of casual privilege that men enjoy in our world. Seeing misogynists complain about this is kinda funny because they’re basically looking through a dark mirror, and seeing the ladies complain about it is kinda funny because it’s literally a world where women hold the reins of power. Some of it hasn’t aged well, sure, but the series was started in the late ’80s and was progressive as fuck for its time.

    The books are amazing through about the end of book eight. They slow down a bit in the middle, but he was off to the races with Knife of Dreams and the ones finished out by Sanderson are quick reads despite being ridiculously long. If you’re a fantasy fan then you should check it out, even if you do sort of trail off by the middle of the series.

  15. The Obama inauguration also brought back memories. I remember sitting in bed with my wife watching the speech in Grant Park and being on the verge of tears. It was such a relief after eight years of Dubya and all the missteps in his administration.

    I also try to remind myself that what we’re enduring right now isn’t new. There has always been a backlash. Reconstruction gave way to the Redemption era where former Confederate soldiers ran a campaign of terror that set back civil rights by a century. The Civil Rights Act brought a resurgence in the Klan and the now infamous Southern Strategy where Republicans used dog whistle politics to court racists. That led to a party realignment that is only now really coming to its natural conclusion with Republican dominance of rural areas after the Southern Strategy reoriented everything.

    I take hope from the knowledge that there are so many people out there fighting the good fight and calling these people out on their outright racism. People get on others for slacktivism and only posting on social media, but it has an effect. There are a lot of racists emboldened by recent events, but there are also a lot of people making it clear that shit won’t fly.

    Quick aside: I had the same worry as Diana while I was watching Obama’s speech. If you watch a zoomed out shot of that speech you’ll see the giant bulletproof glass barriers they had up protecting him from pretty much all angles to keep that from happening.

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