Tuesday, June 10, 2008

I can count to G!

Happy Tuesday, all. It's time to focus on a favorite letter of mine, G. It's a hefty piece of real estate.

Galileo: My moniker for this blog, and a majority of the Internet. But where does it come from? I'll tell you right now: It's my fraternity nickname. The nickname comes from my college's annual talent show, where the pledge classes from all of the Greek organizations act out a random skit. One of the things my class had to do was lip sync "Bohemian Rhapsody." Guess who was Freddy Mercury? There's your answer.

Grover: Far and away one of the greatest of the Sesame Street Muppet's. He's the man, and can do almost anything and it would be awesome. He could teach you the difference between neeeeear and...FAAAAAAAAARRRRR!!!, play Super Grover to save the world from the Letter of The Day, or just annoy the Fat Blue Muppet that's in all of his segments with manic exuberance. He could surely kick Elmo's ass 8 times, because that's the number that today's show is sponsored by.

Hell, he's the star of one of my all-time favorite Kid's books "There's A Monster At The End of This Book!" (Spoiler: It's him. Sorry kids.) And who could forget "Monster In The Mirror," which gave me one of my very first exposures to the Simpsons. Wubba-wubba-wubba woo woo woo, Hubba-wubba-wubba and a doddily doo. I have not heard that song in several years, that was completely by memory.

Played by Frank Oz, he's among the great pantheon of furry blue Muppet's which include Herry Monster, Cookie Monster, and our next subject.

The Great Gonzo: Another furry blue Muppet, he's one of the all-stars of the Muppet Show, and one of my personal favorites. Technically, he's one of the only main Muppet's to be in every episode, thanks to his weekly trumpet blowing after the theme song. Another hapless Muppet performer like Fozzie, he strives to be liked despite his bizarre behavior. His awesomely unique feats include eating a tire to "The Flight of The Bumblebee," demolishing a car with a hammer to the tune of "The Anvil Chorus," balancing himself on a tightrope while holding a piano and reciting the 7 times tables, hypnotizing chickens, and showing off dancing cheese. Usually these acts would cause him to get booed off the stage moments after the curtains rise, but he eventually ends them himself due to his own misfortunes.

For those of you like me who watched Muppet Babies as a kid, you may be familiar with the running theme of Gonzo's crush on Miss Piggy. It was an interesting dynamic to say the least, but I shall reveal that this crush ultimately ended in the Madeline Kahn episode of the Muppet Show." When Ms. Kahn rejected his marriage proposal, he then settled on an obsession for chickens, namely Camilla. He's also one of the rare Muppet's to have a movie devoted to him, in his case it was "Muppet From Space" where it's revealed that Gonzo is an alien...but the species is still unnamed.

Another aspect that I love about this Muppet is his name. I find it hilarious that in "Muppet Christmas Carol," he's credited as "The Great Gonzo." Alliteration bonus! +5!

Garfield Minus Garfield: The classic comic strip Garfield is a favorite of mine, even if it has been...lagging in the last few years. JON GOING OUT WITH LIZ IS KILLING THE WHOLE DAMN STRIP...sorry bout that, must be my trick knee acting up again. Anyway, the strip itself with Garfield is amusing and a somewhat sense of normalcy among the funny pages with its quirky characters and story lines. But then a guy named Dan Walsh decided "what if I took Garfield out and left everyone else in?"

You would think it's freaky enough that Jon talks to his cat, whose only thoughts are known to us, but when you take Garfield out altogether the strip becomes much different. No more wisecracks or "I hate Mondays;" what we see is a lonely man on the brink of schizophrenia and manic-depression. What used to be simple jokes about how Jon loves polyester accordions are now views into his life with several empty panels with no one to talk (or think) back to him, just like a normal person would when talking to inanimate objects. When Jim Davis got work of this, he didn't send his drone of Cease & Desist lawyers like he usually does. It turns out that he loves it!

Guy Fieri: I told you back in the A entry that I'd cover this Food Network Personality. He happens to be the first winner of the reality show "The Next Food Network Star," and unlike some shows, it actually kept up its end of the bargain and Guy is somewhat of a household name of Food Network junkies. He hosts a cooking show "Guy's Big Bite," and a road show called "Diners, Drive-In & Dives," where he showcases odd mom & pop places around the country.

The main problem that some people have with him is his personality. He's 40 years old, but looks and talks like a 22 year old over-tanned California surfer. He also spouts "hip" fifty-cent catchphrases such as "bonzer," "off the hook," "that's how I roll," or "that's money" whenever describing something that's delicious. I don't find him to be that particularly annoying, he's a much better FN Personality than, say, Paula Deen or, God forbid, Rachel Ray, but there are some qualities about him that I've noticed in his shows.

His "Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives" show is a favorite of mine, where Guy goes into these odd little restaurants to check out the decor and the food from the kitchen itself. Usually in kitchens people were things like gloves, and nets, and shoes, but not Guy. He just strolls in with some flip flops and bare hands and samples food that's fresh to the point of still being in the pan. Sometimes this is not enough: it's not uncommon for him to casually walk up to a few customers and happily eat their food. He always take huge bites that would make a Hoover proud, and even gives commentary while spitting the food back to its preparer with his still-crammed hamster pouch. That should raise some eyebrows and health issues, and I hear that newer episodes are filmed while the restaurant is thankfully closed. If I ever went to a place and found out that an episode was being filmed the day I was there, I would think twice on which entree to order. Click here for a great example where he does everything but eats food that's not on his plate. He almost does, but he simply settles on ogling his neighbors' plates.

I liken him to two ideas: The first, with his deplorable food manners and his habit of not taking any precautions in the kitchen liken him to Cookie Monster. You always see him eat and eat but never swallow a thing! The other, which is his Diner show itself, reminds me of that old SNL sketch where Phil Hartman plays Bill Clinton jogging into a McDonalds and eats everyone's food while everyone stares in awe. The people at this thread at Television Without Pity have addressed all of these issues, and have even given him the nickname "Tater Tot." To paraphrase Dan: Don't ask, just read.

Hope you liked today's letter, check in tomorrow for things that start with H!

"That's nothing, I can count from Purple backwards!"


Anonymous said...

I never realized how cool G was until now. Grover and Gonzo under one letter? Good gravy.

DC said...

I loved Grover! I used to have a Super Grover doll that I kept with me everywhere. He ruled!

Dan said...

Grover is so much cooler than Elmo. I think we should start an anti-Elmo movement and give Grover his place back in the spotlight like he deserves. If it weren't for him and Cookie Monster Elmo would still be a pile of shag carpeting in a warehouse somewhere!
Anyway another great post my friend but I do have one correction. Guy is actually the second winner of Food Network Star, the first winners were two guys who kind of faded into obscurity shortly after getting their show. Nitpicky I know but "that's how I roll" XD

Anonymous said...

Are you saying Elmo is the bastard child of Grover and Cookie Monster?

JoshC said...

Gee whiz, they just keep getting better and better.
I read that Garfield minus Garfield comic last night for the first time and thought it was insanely funny, most of the strips on the site are from some of the Garfield collections I have, so seeing them like this is great.

I've never seen anything special in regard to Elmo, next to Grover Elmo is a big pile of puke.

Denise said...

Grover and Cookie Monster own.

DC said...

Elmo's whiny voice makes me want to punch him in the face. That's right, I want to beat up on a puppet. I'll make him my welcome mat on my front door.

Anonymous said...

LOL I never really got that bugged by Guy until I read some of the stuff on TwoP and I started noticing. One night my mom and brother were watching DDD and I pointed out about how he always stuffs his face, and he NEVER lets it cool, etc. We were rolling on the floor because he proceeded to burn his mouth of EVERY SINGLE piece of food for the rest of the show. He's so gross.

I LOVE Gonzo.