Tag: Sam Malone

Day 999: Buh-Bye, So Long and Hallelujah

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It’s a completely valid question.

For the past 50 or so days I have been fielding one question more often than most: what am I going to do for Day 1000? Will the final kilograph reflect upon the 999 that came before, like some extended clip show of my greatest guffaws and most aww-rending moments? Will I spend my final entry in closing-credits mode, thanking those who have made this all possible and put up with my considerable dearth of free time over the last 2 years and almost 9 months?

In short… no. While my original intent was to meander down that self-serving footpath for my final article, I decided that I would only do so if I could cite the Wikipedia page that had been created about me – as it turns out, that doesn’t exist yet.

In order to figure out my final missive, I felt I should turn to the moulder of my wisdom, the sage oracle who has helped to shape my morality, my perception, and even my understanding of the world: television. I have experienced the highs and lows of series finales – certainly at least one of them could illuminate the road to a poignant, entertaining, and (most of all) worthy coda to this monstrous undertaking.

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My first option is the beloved trope of bringing back a classic character for the finale. In my case I could introduce a surprise cameo by Yoko Ono, Craig David, Mary Nissenson, or if I really want to stretch to my roots, Phineas Gage. I could style the entire piece in a blend of haiku, musical theatre and secret code (did anyone ever figure that one out?). It sounds trite and cliché, but that’s always a place to start, isn’t it? Read more…

Day 353: The Contest

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Fans of the show Seinfeld are the perfect demographic to mesh up with fans of my site. Both are really about nothing, and both (hopefully) leave their viewers with some little bit of meaninglessness they can carry through the day. For Seinfeld viewers, it might be a new term, like “low-talker” or “mimbo”. For my readers, it might be the knowledge that a book with 24 gas station photos could be worth $35,000, or that causation law could be applied to Sharktopus attacks.

And while only the true fans of Seinfeld will know each episode by name (almost all of them are named “The (something)”, everyone who watched the show during its original 1989-1998 run will remember “The Contest.”

Remember

In November of 1992, the landscape of television was very different. Seven of the top ten shows were sitcoms, all of them three-camera style, with a live studio audience that had been beefed up for our enjoyment with a thick laugh track. Seinfeld wasn’t even in the top 20. Sex was common fodder for subject matter, particularly when it came to Sam Malone on Cheers or that skanky character from Designing Women (I want to say… all of them?), but it had to be handled delicately in order to sneak past the censors. There was no AMC, nothing worth raving about on Showtime, and HBO had just begun to demonstrate how much more daring and innovative a standard-format show could be on cable six months earlier with The Larry Sanders Show. Read more…