Best Stuff catch-up: Days 9 to 11

Alright, so school is officially cramping my desire to work on this blog. But I set myself a target, and I intend to hit it. Without further ado, then, come three more contributions to the canon of amazing things that I experienced in 2010:

Day9: Comedy Death Ray

They have a podcast that I hear is great, but what I’m actually talking about here is the $5 comedy showcase in Los Angeles proper. That token sum gets you a guaranteed superb line-up with occasional special guests (in my case, the always hilarious Patton Oswalt, testing new material and mocking his own already-dated references to Avatar). No wonder it sells out almost instantly. Every so often, I’m jealous of what goes on in genuine cultural capitals.



Day 10: The Alloy Orchestra’s live accompaniment of Metropolis

The Calgary Cinematheque Society may still be growing, but it knows how to put on a show. Its most recent event-slash-fundraiser brought the acclaimed Alloy Orchestra back to Calgary (they were here in holycrapthatwas2007? for a Cinematheque screening of Underworld, sadly not the one with werewolves and vampires), this time blowing away all expectations. It helps that the film this time was the expressionist masterpiece Metropolis, which offers much more freedom in its interpretation than the gangster epic from their last visit. There’s more to say about both the movie and the score than I could fit into this paragraph, but suffice to say it’s proof that Alloy’s at the top of their game and that Metropolis’ slow climb to critical rehabilitation and that the painstaking process of assembling a complete print was entirely worthwhile.

It’s just not the same without Alloy’s score, but here’s a glimpse:

Day 11: Archer

For those who loved Frisky Dingo (one of the more brilliant shows to emerge from the Adult Swim line-up, mixing the absurdity of Aqua Teen or Sealab with a legitimate effort at plot development), but who (rightly) thought that the Xtacles spin-off was, well, shit. Super-spy action, crude humour, fantastic voice work from H. Jon Benjamin, Chris Parnell and Arrested Development’s Jessica Walter, absurdity and enough running jokes to give you a smug sense of belonging whenever you watch it. Think of a contemporary, animated Get Smart with a heart of pure poison and you’re getting close.

Previous best stuff:
The Anthology Project
El Guincho’s “Bombay” (NSFW)
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
Eye Spy zine
Julia Tiller, illustrator
Hip: The History
Soundway compilations
No Exit

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