One of the most beloved episodes, of one of the most beloved geek shows in history is “Once More With Feeling” – the musical episode from the sixth season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
In this particular episode from 2001, a demon called Sweet takes Dawn to be his bride and traps all of Sunnydale into a deadly musical, which Joss Whedon used brilliantly to address relationship issues between all the characters, including the reveal that when the Scoobies resurrected Buffy, they didn’t save her from Hell, but instead ripped her from Heaven. At the time it was a pretty major deal, and this remains one of the better hours in the show’s entire run.
The release comes from the Mondo Record Label, who in a statement said:
We’ve been huge fans of “Buffy: The Vampire Slayer” for decades…. Our obsession with the musical episode “Once More With Feeling” inadvertently presented a solution to a long standing problem of how to best entry point for us to celebrate the brilliantly singular, yet expansive series. It took a few years to get it perfect, but we couldn’t be prouder with the artwork that Paul Mann put together—including some truly inspired additional design by Chris Bilheimer and Eric Montes, who came up with the idea of the “Slaybill” lyric booklet.
Buffy: The Vampire Slayer: Once More, With Feeling (Original Cast Recording):
01 Overture / Going Through the Motions
02 I’ve Got a Theory/Bunnies / If We’re Together
03 The Mustard
04 Under Your Spell
05 I’ll Never Tell
06 The Parking Ticket
07 Rest in Peace
08 Dawn’s Lament
09 Dawn’s Ballet
10 What You Feel
12 Under Your Spell / Standing – Reprise
13 Walk Through the Fire
14 Something to Sing About
15 What You Feel – Reprise
16 Where Do We Go From Here?
18 End Credits (Broom Dance / Grr Arrgh)
19 Main Title
The vinyl LP will be available March 20 at 12 p.m. Central via Mondo.
While promoting her upcoming CBS comedy with Robin Williams (which you can check out the trailer for among the 37 new TV trailers we’ve gathered) someone asked Sarah Michelle Gellar if she’d be on board for a Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie. That in and of itself isn’t newsworthy. Given the huge success the Veronica Mars Movie has found via Kickstarter, you have to imagine that everyone that has ever been part of a fan favorite TV show has been fielding questions about the possibility of a film adaptation.
The nice part is that Gellar didn’t give a total throw away answer. She could have easily laughed it off but instead she only half laughed it off:
[box_light]“If there ever was the right story, we would do it, but the thing with Buffy is that Buffy was a movie, and it ultimately didn’t work as a film, the story works better over time.”
At this point, the stake would be my walker and I would be hobbling in.”[/box_light]
So obviously not the green light Buffy fans would hope for, but it’s nice to know that Gellar and creator Joss Whedon have discussed it. Of course the biggest problem with a Buffy film would be getting the old cast back together. David Borneaz, for whatever reason, rarely talks about either Buffy or Angel. James Marsters believed he was too old in the first place to play Spike. Alyson Hannigan and Alexis Denisof are off being their busy adorable married selves. Unfortunately Anthony Head’s pilot for The CW (The Selection) wasn’t picked up so he’d possibly be available.
Will there ever be a Buffy movie? Unlikely. But no harm in dreaming right? To soothe ourselves, let’s take a look back at Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
To round out the network portion of our look at upcoming pilots, it’s the “little guys” themselves, Fox and The CW. I don’t suppose they really are the little guys anymore but even though they have highly rated shows and have outperformed some of the “Big 3” in recent years (looking at you NBC), they still have that “sitting at the kid’s table” air about them. Give them another five-ten years and if things keep going down the same path, we’ll laugh at the days we thought The CW was just home to teen angst.
As for their pilots, it’s a little strange. The CW doesn’t have that many at all, and almost every one looks interesting whereas Fox has quite a few and almost none of them appeal to me in the least bit. Could this be the year I become a CW (I think they need to drop the awkward ‘the’) fan beyond one show? Oooh, mystery!
Let’s get on to these pilots shall we?
[tabgroup][tab title=”Sleepy Hollow”]
Because of Star Trek, Fringe, and Alias, I can forgive Alex Kurtzman for Hawaii Five-0. He will go further in that forgiveness if his project with Phillip Iscove and Roberto Orci proves to be worth anything.
Orlando Jones is one of those guys that you see and you can’t quite place him but you know you’ve seen him everywhere. His biggest project was probably MadTV back in the late 90’s and he’s taken a tour around Hollywood since then. Now he’s signed on as a detective in this modern day version of the classic story. Joining him are Dexter actress Katia Winter and as Ichabod Crane, Tom Mison.
As we’ve seen with Grimm and Once Upon a Time, modern day versions of “children’s” stories are doing pretty well so hopefully the Headless Horseman can join the ranks this year on Fox.
Speaking of Star Trek, Bones (Karl Urban) has himself a new role in another J.J. Abrams project. This time however, it’s a Fox drama/buddy-cop show about members of the LAPD teaming up with androids. The premise seems a little old but if it gets picked up to series, I’ll withhold judgement for at least two or three episodes. It’s one of those things that could be really good, or incredibly lame.
However, one good reason to check it out if it does make it to series? Lili Taylor.
I really enjoyed her performance in HemlockGrove and look forward to her returning to my TV full time since Six Feet Under.
[/tab][tab title = “Untitled Mike Schur”]
I think we all know there was no way I was going to leave out Andy Samberg’s comedy pilot for Fox. So far it’s just known as “Untitled Mike Schur/Dan Goor Project” but with the name power that Samberg would bring in, one has to imagine this will easily make it to series and get a proper title along the way.
It isn’t just Samberg that makes this pilot look interesting. For me, the most intriguing name would be Chelsea Peretti. A comedian who has been a part of some of my favorite shows (Parks and Rec, Louie, Portlandia…) as well as a hugely popular podcast, it really was only a matter of time until Peretti showed up a bit more full time.
Add in Terry Crews, Joe Lo Truglio, and Andre Braugher as the Captain of the group of NYPD detectives and this sitcom looks to be rather appealing.
[/tab][tab title = “The Tomorrow People”]
“So there was this British series back in the 70’s and it was about this group of kids who had different superpowers and they fight evil.”
“Oh so like X-Men?”
I can’t imagine the people behind the The Tomorrow People pilot for CW haven’t had that exact conversation. That being said, I’d still watch it. Executive Producers on this one are all from shows that I have watched and really enjoyed including Greg Berlanti from Arrow and Phil Klemmer from Chuck.
Oh and speaking of Arrow, if you thought that dashing young man to the left there looked familiar, it’s because he bears a striking resemblance to his cousin, Arrow star, Stephen Amell. Robbie Amell is the lead role in The Tomorrow People and as usual with CW, is surrounded by plenty of other young and pretty people.
Forget young and pretty though, I’m looking most forward to Mark Pellegrino. Yes, that Mark Pellegrino.
[/tab][tab title = “Oxygen”]
[quote]About an epic romance between a human girl and an alien boy when he and eight others of his kind are integrated into a suburban high school 10 years after they landed on Earth and were consigned to an internment camp.[/quote]
That’s the logline. No, really, that’s it. How anyone could read that and immediately not want to see how on Earth that ends up, well I don’t know that anyone could. Seems a bit Kyle XY with a little historical injustice mixed in for good measure. That’s just enough weird for me to be intrigued. Plus it’s gotMatt Lanter, voice of Anakin Skywalker in The Clone Wars as well as Harry Osborne on Ultimate Spider-Man and that’s a good thing.
[/tab][tab title = “The Selection”]
It’s Anthony Head! Giles! Anthony Head!
Need I say more?
Oh, well in that case… Anthony Head is set to play King Clarkson, a man who is just trying to find his son a queen by holding a lottery. Because we all know – true love is found most often when your number is called.
Okay so it isn’t the greatest sounding premise if you aren’t a girl of the teenage variety, but come on, it’s Anthony Head! As a king just like in Merlin. You best believe, I will watch this.
So there you have it, the pilots from Fox and The CW that I think look promising and you should keep an eye out for! Now that we’ve finished up the networks, next up we’ll take a tour around cable and see what’s in store.
As CBS will tell you themselves, quite often and with a bit of smugness, they are “America’s Most Watched Network”. I struggle to see how that is possible given that all their shows seem to be the same – either a predictable crime procedural or a predictable sitcom – but apparently people like predictability because CBS sits on top of ratings and has done so for years. They have a lot of pilots in production, a lot is typical CBS fare (I wonder if Chuck Lorre has naked pictures of Les Moonves somewhere, or he’s just made a deal with the devil that somehow the free world will love his crappy shows) but there are a few that look to be somewhat promising.
I’m choosing to believe that this one will be better than the typical crime procedural. I don’t know why I’m doing this, but I am. After NBC decided not to go forward with a Dwight centered spin-off of The Office, Rainn Wilson has found himself on CBS playing an “overweight, offensive, irascible detective as he tries, and fails, to change his self-destructive behavior.”
Based on a Swedish series of crime novels,THR has said that the show would take place in Portland which will be interesting to see if they make the city a character itself. Hart Hanson, creator of Bones, is behind this project which is promising. No matter how crappy Bones has become, it started off quite strong and was also based on a series of novels so he’s in familiar territory. Not only that but any show that has Dennis Haysbert is one I will watch.
[tab title=”Super Clyde & Unnamed project”]
If you aren’t watching Raising Hope on Fox, well then you need to remedy that, immediately. Greg Garcia’s show about a man who finds himself a single dad raising his daughter while living with his parents is easily one of my favorites. Add in My Name is Earl and Yes, Dear and it’s safe to say I’m a Greg Garcia fan. So you can only imagine my excitement when I saw he was developing not one, but two pilots this year. They both have potential and some pretty big names attached.
The premise of the unnamed project looks to have similar plot points as Garcia’s Raising Hope given that it’s a grown man living with his parents. This time, however, it’s Margo Martindale (who is perhaps one of the greatest character actresses ever) moving in with her recently divorced son, Will Arnett while her husband, Beau Bridges, moves in with their daughter Mary Elizabeth Ellis who you probably know as the Waitress from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Add in Michael Rapaport and this is a great looking cast.
One has to imagine that Will Arnett is primed to have a commercially successful show. We all know that Arrested Development is a genius show, but his 2010 sitcom, Running Wilde, was also really good but sadly was canceled after one season. Up All Night had potential but has crashed and burned in spectacular fashion. Is this Will Arnett’s time? We’ll have to wait and see.
If Super Clyde doesn’t get picked up and CBS instead opts for another mindless crappy formulaic sitcom, I might cry. I have a feeling I’ll be joined by quite a few Anglophiles and Potterheads.
Ron Weasley is possibly coming to TV and I couldn’t be happier. Rupert Grint stars in the title role of Garcia’s Super Clyde playing the fast-food worker who decides to become a superhero. Everything in that sentence sounds awesome. If I needed more reason to want this show to make it to air, I’d find it in Stephen Fry. Yes, Stephen Fry. That Stephen Fry.
This show is a fangirl’s dream come true!
[/tab][tab title=”Second Sight”]
Speaking of My Name is Earl and all things Britain, Jason Lee is returning to network TV in a remake of the British crime drama, Second Sight. I’ll admit that I really didn’t think anything of this pilot until I saw the logline.
[quote]Based on the British crime drama, the gothic psychological thriller follows a detective who is suddenly afflicted with an autoimmune virus that causes him to hallucinate about subjects in his subconscious. He soon learns that catching killers depends as much on insight as eyesight.[/quote]
I have not seen any of the British version so I can’t attest to how successful this premise is, but it certainly sounds different and promising. Perhaps a bit of Medium mixed with Ghost Whisperer with a bit of Memphis Beat added in for good measure. Set in New Orleans, much like Backstrom I imagine the city will be a star as well.
Michael Cuesta is behind Second Sight and if his work on the re-imagining of the Israeli show Hatufim (Cuesta is an executive producer of Homeland) is any indication, the production value of Second Sight should be rather high. He’s also worked on this little show called Dexter that has a few fans so he’s no stranger to big shows.
[tab title=”The Surgeon General”]
Lie to Me, Awake, Commander-in-Chief, Lord of the Rings, Ringer
That’s just some of the shows and movies people involved both in front of and behind the camera of The Surgeon General have on their resumes. Given how much I like each of those shows and movies, I imagine that my knowledge of the Surgeon General is going to go beyond this episode of West Wing.
We have to hand it to Jason Issacs who resisted the urge to burn NBC to the ground after his show Awake was canceled. I don’t think anyone would have blamed him as it was as close to a crime as you can get without actually committing a crime. Now he’s moved on over to CBS and is in the lead role as the top doctor in the country, the Surgeon General. His chief of staff is being played by one of my favorites, Kathryn Morris. She’s done a few things here or there but has mostly been unheard of since her show Cold Case went off the air in 2010.
Both Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings obviously) and Mike Colter (Ringer) are listed as doctors but their roles aren’t any more specified than that.
From Samuel Baum, who created Lie to Me, The Surgeon General looks to be like most other political shows but instead of the President, it’s the Surgeon General. Will this be enough to make it seem like a fresh and unique show? Well Rod Lurie is directing that pilot and he did a pretty nice job making a show about the President seem new when he was an executive producer of the canceled before it’s time, Commander in Chief, so chances are good.
[tab title=”The Crazy Ones”]
BUFFY IS BACK!!!!!
Okay, well sort of. Sarah Michelle Gellar is back at least. After spending a year over at CW with Ringer (a show people should have stuck with as it got much better as it went on), Gellar is teaming up with a little known actor/comedian named Robin Williams for a workplace comedy about a father/daughter run ad agency.
If Gellar and Williams weren’t enough to pique your interest (seriously?) then some of the other cast will. Hamish Linklater (The New Adventures of Old Christine) will play the agency’s art director and James Wolk (Political Animals) has signed on as a copywriter.
Of course having big on-screen names is great, but having TV royalty behind the scenes is even greater. David E. Kelley might not have hit gold with Harry’s Law but one has to imagine that Crazy Ones will find an audience pretty quickly, even if they are people who are just looking to finally have something to fill that Just Shoot Me! void in their lives.
So there we go! A somewhat varied group of prospects that hopefully will see the light of day. If for no other reason than perhaps we can see something else besides Big Bang Theory and NCIS promos on the network. That would be a refreshing change.
Last night, if you weren’t distracted by baseball or football, you might have heard something from the northeastern part of this great country that sounded a little bit like the shriek of a schoolgirl.
Actually, it was a shriek, from not schoolgirls, but rather fangirls. And fanboys. And just fans in general. Why would millions of fans squeal in communal delight? The answer is simple:
That’s right friends and neighbors, the fan favorite, Agent Phil Coulson has become the first confirmed member of Joss Whedon’s upcoming ABC pilot, S.H.I.E.L.D.
The reaction to Agent Coulson’s death in The Avengers was one of heartbreak. All around the world people huddled together in comfort for the loss of a character who was beloved from his first appearance in 2008’s Iron Man. He was probably most loved by the man who portrayed him, Clark Gregg. Gregg is a self-professed geek and lover of comics and of course, Agent Coulson. So you can only imagine how it felt to sit at the Marvel panel during the New York Comic-Con and watch an “In Memoriam” tribute video to the character. Reports are that Gregg was actually moved to tears. Can’t say that I blame him.
A video of Joss Whedon started playing, saying that they had always wanted Gregg as “part of the Marvel Universe… even after his death,” and as if sent by the angels himself, Kevin Feige entered, wearing a shirt that read “Coulson Lives” and announced that Gregg would indeed be reprising the role of Agent Coulson in S.H.I.E.L.D.
Why is this such big news? Well it’s always fun to hear about our favorite characters that we all believe have died, only for them to come back to life, or find out they never died in the first place. But I think with Coulson it’s a little bit more than that. I think it’s because he is one of us. He’s a fan. Watching him meet Captain America and having that awestruck look on his face, I don’t think there’s many people who, when meeting their heroes, wouldn’t have the same reaction. Then to watch him “die” trying to protect his hero and company, I mean come on, who wouldn’t want to go out like that?
On top of that, after the massive success of The Avengers with Joss Whedon at the helm, it is exciting just to hear any news about the new show. Geeks have experienced both the highs and the lows of Whedon television shows. On one hand you’ve got the success of Buffy the Vampire Slayerand Angel, on the other hand you’ve got the great losses of Dollhouse and of course, Firefly. So when news comes out like this, a major character in a wildly successful movie blockbuster is part of the cast of the TV show, we just hold our breaths and hope that it’s enough to convince the network to stick with it.
So there you have it- Agent Coulson lives to see another day. Are you excited as I am?
In the world of film and television, there’s a lot of BS going on in regards to female characters, and usually the term BS implies that you’re dealing with people you’d rather avoid if at all possible. Take one BS-er for example: Bella Swan. Many girls adore her story, torn between the affections of a shirtless stalker like dog boy and the glorious sparkly immortal who broods all day because he is just to deep for words – but those of us with more developed brains tend to hate her lack of gumption. There’s one BS-er though, who has consistently earned our attention and admiration, and that is one Ms. Buffy Summers. Resident of southern California, high school cheerleader, and slayer of vampires – among other things the go bump in the night. The character of Buffy was invented by God’s gift to Hollywood, Joss Whedon. She first appeared in a 1992 movie called Buffy the Vampire Slayer starring Kristy Swanson; it was a comedic action film that didn’t really do Buffy the dark justice that Whedon had originally intended for her.
Welcome to The Griz Bin, a weekly look at the world wide web of comic related nonsense.
– The 20 Most Ridiculous Batman Comics Ever Released:Featuring such equally ridiculous titles as ‘The Rainbow Batman‘ or ‘Dead Til Proven Alive’ with the Beatles! – [Cracked]
– Women of Marvel Sketch Cards: Awesome sketch cards featuring the Mighty Women of Marvel looking good and kicking ass! – [GeekTyrant]
– 10 Best Batman: The Brave and the Bold Episodes:In honor of the series ending, here are 10 good onesthat you need to check out. Unless your like me and have seen every episode numerous times. – [Newsarama]
As my dear friend Darth Saeris informed us quite recently, Willis and Schwarzenegger are not only coming back for the Expendables sequel, but they are going to have much larger roles. He also told us that Jet Li would not be returning, and there were rumors that Donnie Yen (Ip Man) would replace him, but that now appears as though Jet Li might appear after all, just in a smaller capacity. And that’s good news. Not because I don’t like Yen, who I actually have the utmost respect for, but because – though sorely underused in the first movie – Li was my favorite character. In addition to Li, it seems Schwarzenegger’s True Lies co-star Tom Arnold might also be popping up, no doubt as comic relief. There is no conformation there yet, but Movieweb recently posted a video where Arnold says he was sent a script by Sly and wants to be involved. In addition to doing True Lies with Schwarzenegger, Arnold also worked with Jet Li before in Cradle 2 The Grave.
The basic plot is as follows:
Plot: After Tool (Mickey Rourke) is brutally murdered on a mission, his comrades swear to avenge him. They’re not the only ones who want blood. Tool’s beautiful young and wild daughter Fiona embarks on her own revenge mission, complicating matters when she is captured and ransomed by a ruthless dictator plotting to destroy a resistance movement. Now Barney (Sylvester Stallone) and the Expendables must risk everything to save her and humanity.
Van Damme is rumored to play a former colleague, who becomes the villain in the film. He’ll be completely covered in tattoos and have his own gang of mercenaries. Adkins is in talks to play one of the mercenaries.
The additions of Chuck Norris and Van Damme to the cast seem only logical. The big surprise is that they weren’t in the first one…
No word yet as to if Veronica Mars alum Cordelia ChaseCharisma Carpenter will return. But my guess is no…
So last winter we learned that Warner Brothers was planning to reboot the 1992 film Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The reboot was not based of the original’s success, but instead the cult following created by the TV show that started in 1997, 5 years after the movies. The creator – Joss Whedon – was offered a chance to get involved and passed. So let’s start off by saying this: Without Joss Whedon this shouldn’t even be made.
Whedon created the characters, wrote, produced, and directed the movie, wrote, produced, and directed the show, and writes the comics. This is his baby, it is why we know his name. Along with the spin-off show Angel, the world of Buffy is vast, and after the Twilight craze, in today’s Hollywood, it was only a matter of time till some intrepid studio head decided this needed a re-boot. It just doesn’t seem right without Joss at the head.
BUT, it’s getting made anyhow, and as ‘Buffy Fans’, Michelle and I have decided to take a look at the upcoming project and let you know who we think could fill the shoes once worn byKristy Swanson and more recently, Sarah Michelle Geller…
So first, Michelle’s thoughts…
Buffy Can Do The Single Ladies Dance!
A rumor recently surfaced about who might play ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ in the new Warner Bros. movie reboot. The rumor named Glee star Heather Morris as the top pick for the new Ms. Summers.
According to the magical internet machine in my living room, she was singled out because of her background in gymnastics and dance, making her athletic. She also would be a pretty damn good-looking Buffy… in my opinion. Although Warner Brothers sent a statement saying that the Heather Morris rumor is untrue, and that discussions about casting won’t occur until after the script is completely done, it got me to thinking about who would make a good on-screen Buffy.
Which brings me to my next point:
Michelle’s TOP 3 PICKS FOR BUFFY (other than Heather Morris):
Eliza played Faith on the original Buffy TV series. I think not only did she do a great job, but she would know the role better than anyone. She is athletic and attractive, but has an incredible fierce attitude that would be necessary by a badass such as Buffy. The only problem? Trying to get her to dye her hair.
Meester has had guest roles on shows such as Veronica Mars, 24 and Entourage, as well as starring in the new thriller The Roommate, where she played… well… a psycho. She did an amazing job, and has had experience being weird, yet totally together. She would be a great choice. She is fit and young and is very professional. She would fit more into the type of character that Kristy Swanson played in the movie… a tad ditzy and cutesy, but she gets her slay on.
Stone has impressed me greatly in her somewhat short career. She has proven herself time and time again… she doesn’t do shitty movies. She showed her athleticism off in Zombieland which is one of my favorite movies. She would bring a new funny modern twist to Buffy because she has a ‘tude, and we know she can kick some ass. Her brassy demeanor and gorgeous presence makes me think that she would be a prime candidate for such a remake.
All of this being said, if Joss Whedon isn’t involved, I know that a lot of fans will not see this remake. It will be hard to get over that detail, but I do believe that no matter what, if they cast it properly it will be great. Buffy is a great character.
Ok, so I like Heather Morris as much as the next red-blooded male, and I’d actually be behind her casting – HOWEVER, with no formal training from an acting stand point, and only minimal experience as a secondary character on Glee, I see her as a long shot. And I’m fairly certain the only reason she’s even being talked about, is this:
So, anyhow, as much flack as the show took from non-fans, though out it’s course there actually was some pretty heavy drama from time to time, so bit of acting aptitude should be taken into account for what could turn into a whole series of movies…
Kronner’s Top 3 Picks…
Now, I know what you’re thinking – “Kronner is gonna say Kristen Bell“, but once, you’re wrong. Her name has been thrown around a few places, but she already owned the High School scene for 2 seasons worth of Veronica Mars and I doubt that now, come up on 30, she’d want back down that road. I’ve also heard Summer Glau‘s name, but again, I think she’s past the point of play a teenager. And of course there were the rumors about Megan Fox, but I think her career is headed no where but down from here…
Sucker Punch was nothing great, but you can’t knock Emily’s performance in it, nor can you say it doesn’t at least qualify her for some consideration here. At only 22 years old, she could easily pass as a High Schooler, and she has both the acting chops and body to meet the demands of the movie. She, as of now, would be my first choice. (Plus ‘Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events’ was throughly entertaining…)
My 2nd choice would have to be the star of the CW show Nikita. Based (obviously) of the French movie La Femme Nikita, Lyndsy plays a kick-ass spy on the show, and I’m sure she could play a kick-ass Slayer in the movies. Not to mention her choice of roles over the last few years (Heroes, Kick-Ass, Hot Tub Time Machine) give the impression she’d be all about killings some vamps…
Wood has plenty of experience with vampires playing the Queen of Louisiana on True Blood, but as her schedule has just cleared up, this is a 23-year-old who could easily pass for 16, especially when you consider that Swanson was 23 when the original movie came out. Wood can act, looks the part, and would no doubt be available.
The role of ‘Buffy’s Watcher’ is an important one, as he is not only the man who trains her, but a father figure as well. Sean Bean, the 52-year-old, recently unemployed star of HBO’s Game of Thrones could be a great fit as the man who must train this generation’s slayer. Maybe ‘dork’ him up a bit, but this would give you an established star with over-lapping fanbases. Most Buffy fans aren’t known for hating on Lord of the Rings afterall…
And while the following characters weren’t in the movie, they made the show work and it’d be strange to not include them…
Xander – Jeremy Allen White: The 19-year-old White plays Lip Gallagher on Showtime’s Shameless, and is easily my favorite character (outside of Emmy Rossum’s boobs), and could no doubt pull off the role of the dorky friend who is infatuated with the Slayer. This results in a truly identifiable character for the guys watching…
Willow – Molly C. Quinn: Quinn, 18, plays Nathan Fillion’s daughter on the ABC show Castle. She’s a brainy redhead who seems almost molded after the original Willow character…you know before all the lesbian Wiccan stuff anyway.
Characters like Angel, Spike, and Faith could be best left for a sequel, while Dawn could be left out entirely…
So those are our suggestions, what’d you think? Who is your pick for Sunnydale’s next protector?
This is to be the first of a whole new series here at Grizzly Bomb. For each feature we will examine an individual genre and the quality of its films produced within a specific decade. These lists will be compiled from a point system determined by votes from each member of the staff. It’s very scientific, we used Excel.
For this first topic I asked all 11 members of my staff to give me a list of their Top 10 Action Movies of the 1990s. These movies were to be ranked from 1-10, and the results surprised me a little. But before we get there, there was some discussion over what qualifies as an ‘Action Movie’. For the purpose of this exercise, we looked at movies that are unmistakably Action, and ignored some of those that are more broadly categorized. The 3 movies that best fit this example were Braveheart, Saving Private Ryan, and Leon/ The Professional. While all 3 of these movies have action in them, it just seemed like they were too good to be crammed in as genre flicks, as they run a lot deeper than movies like, Tango and Cash or Bad Boys II, which are simply focused on blowing shit up. We were looking more for the ‘Blowing Shit Up’ stuff.
90’s action was about more than just explosions though, it also really expanded on the Sci-Fi aspects as well. As technology advanced and they found themselves able to do things previously not possible, you really saw the whole genre shift on a closer parallel with the Sci-Fi genre than ever prior. As the decade went on, and Stallone and Schwarzenegger got older, Hollywood also started to move away from the muscle-bound action stars of the 1980’s and more towards special effects driven stories.
Anyhow, as for the results: From the 12 people asked to make a Top Ten list, it resulted in 56 different movies being named. I’ve tallied up the points, and I now give you the Top 25 of them…
25. Universal Soldier (1992)
24. Hard Target (1993)
23. Last Man Standing (1996) 22. Hard Boiled (1992)
21. Desperado (1995)
20. GoldenEye (1995)
19. Point Break (1991)
18. Mission Impossible (1996)
17. Total Recall (1990)
16. Demolition Man (1993)
15. Boondock Saints (1999)
14. Under Siege (1992)
13. Con Air (1997)
12. The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996)
11. Independence Day (1996)
In 1998 most people had never heard of the Marvel Comics ‘Vampire Hunter’ Blade. That all changed though when New Line Cinemas cast Wesley Snipes and gave him a sword. Granted, a lot of people still didn’t realize they were watching a ‘Comic Book’ movie, but they loved it. The success of the film also did something else, it proved that you could still make comic movies even in the aftermath of Batman & Robin.
This movie told the story of a half-man/half-vampire with all the powers of the vampires, but very few of their weaknesses. He hunts down the undead to avenge his slain family. Stephen Dorff hands in maybe the strongest performance of his career as Frost; the new head of the vampire community.
Aside from a very capable cast (which included Terrier‘s Donal Louge) Blade had all the elements that made 90’s action great. It was fast paced, filled with gun-play, and featured new technology paired with old-school tactics. The movie revitalized Snipes career for a few more years and spawned 2 sequels and a TV show.
How 90’s is it? – This whole movie was like a really cool commercial for sunglasses, but with more blood. Very 90’s. I award a copy of Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 1 on VHS.
9. Bad Boys
Before he smashed robots into one and other for a living, Michael Bay actually made some really good action flicks. The first of which helped launch Will Smith from Rapper/TV Star into a bonafide movie Superstar. Now one of the highest paid actors in Hollywood, Smith owes many of his career opportunities to Bad Boys. This is also arguably the only movie Martin Lawrence has ever been in where I didn’t hate him.
It’s the story of a couple of Miami Detectives who drive around in a $100,000 car and shoot everything that moves. A huge catch of heroin from a bust of their’s is stolen out of the police evidence locker and they must get it back. My old man used to complain about how often my little sister and I watched this movie because of the abundance of F-Bombs. Apparently those are only ok in mobster movies. He is Italian. Anyhow, this movie is the first time I can really remember such stylized camera work from an American Director. It was like watching a John Woo movie, but with less doves. This is a style that Bay is now known for and probably has trademarked, but when I was 12, it was totally fresh. The sequel that came out in 2003 however, not so much…
How 90’s is it? – From the music to the Micheal Jordan references, this movie was super hip in 1995. I give it a Dodge Viper, a #23 jersey, and a ‘Fresh Prince Greatest Hits’ cassette.
Speed came out in 1994, and probably remained the most spoofed and quoted movie around until Austin Powers showed up in 1997. This movie was a phenomenon, and I think people often forget just how big it was. You can look at what Bad Boys did for Will Smith, and argue that Speed did even more for Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. Keanu transformed himself here from half of ‘Bill and Ted’ into an actual movie star, building on what he started in Point Break. And Sandra Bullock, well she went on to become “America’s Sweetheart” dethroning Julia Roberts, and eventually winning an Oscar. Dennis Hopper also greatly benefited from the movie’s success, keeping him relevant until his death last year.
This was one of those movies where even if you didn’t see it, you know what it was. “Yeah, that’s the one with the bomb on the bus right?” The sequel however had less of an impact, but that’ll happen when you replace the star of the movie. Without Keanu Speed 2 was doomed from the start. It’s not surprising they tried after the success of the first one though. And it’s even less surprising that this movie made the list.
US Release: June 10, 1994 Director: Jan de Bont Notable Cast: Keanu Reeves, Dennis Hopper, Sandra Bullock, Jeff Daniels, Joe Morton, Alan Ruck, Patrick Fischler, and Beth Grant. Oscar Wins/Nominations 2/3 (Won – Sound/Sound Effects Editing) US/Total Box Office: $121,248,145/$350,448,145 Best Quote: “Pop quiz, hotshot. There’s a bomb on a bus. Once the bus goes 50 miles an hour, the bomb is armed. If it drops below 50, it blows up. What do you do? What do you do?” Triva: Quentin Tarantino were offered the chance to direct, but turned it down. Tarantino later named the film as one of his 20 favorite films since 1992.
How 90’s is it? – It’s Seattle-90’s. Everyone in this movie has a flannel shirt, so I give Speed the entire Nirvana discology, and a Starbucks gift card.
7. Die Hard 2: Die Harder
This is the inclusion that will likely surprise the most people. Not that it’s on the list, but that it’s in the Top 10 ahead of movies like Con Air, Face-Off, and Under Siege. I know it surprised me, but I have to honest. I love this movie. And as I was preparing this article, and watching the trailers again for each movie, this is the one that I felt most pumped to watch. After all, what’s the big knock against this movie? It’s too much like it’s predecessor? Well what’s wrong with that? The first Die Hard film is the greatest Action movie of all time.
Anyhow, this time around, and the Christmas following his LA adventure, John McClane is at Dulles Airport in D.C. waiting for his wife’s plane to land, and wouldn’t you know it? Terrorists take over the Airport. Forced to deal with things on his own because Dennis Franz won’t help him, McClane proves once again, it doesn’t pay to always be in the wrong place at the wrong time. This movie gave us what is easily the best ‘ Yippie-kai-yay‘ delivery of the franchise.
How 90’s is it? – This one is ‘New 90’s’ as John had to “get with the 90’s” and learn how to use a fax machine. I award this movie one Zack Morris cell phone.
6. The Last Boy Scout
Joe Hallenbeck is basically a washed out John McClane, working as a detective and disgraced after his exit from the secret service. He’s a drunk and a smartass, and extremely entertaining to watch.
Jimmy Dix is basically a washed out Michael Vick, dating as a stripper that looks like Halle Berry and disgraced after his exit from Pro Football. He’s a drug addict and a pain in Joe’s ass.
This movie took on Sports Gambling and struggling TV rating for Pro Football. Not very realistic there, but hey, it’s a fun watch. This movie is as close as you can get to an “80’s Action Movie” released outside the 80’s. Shane Black’s screenplay is so full of buddy cop moments and one-liners it’s impossible not to like this if you grew up on movies like Lethal Weapon (also written by Shane Black) and The Running Man. It probably would have led to sequels if not for an under performing Box Office total, opening against Hook during the Holiday season and being deemed ‘too violent’ for Christmas.
How 90’s is it? – It’s not. It’s just SUPER late 80’s. So for that it gets a ‘Member’s Only’ jacket and a Prince LP.
5. Die Hard: With a Vengeance
Widely recognized as the better of the 2 Die Hard movies released in the 1990’s, it’s also the first one not to feature Al, Holly, and Richard Thornburg. It also is the first one not to take place at Christmas. This, the 3rd of the series focuses more on John himself, as opposed to the first 2 movies which simply had him thrown into bad situations.
Hans Gruber’s brother Simon (Irons) is holding the city of New York in a grip of terror and he wants to play a game with John. From stolen gold to exploding Subway trains this movie never really slows down. The franchise welcomes back John McTiernan, director of the original movie to breath some new life into McClane, but this time giving him a sidekick. And quite the sidekick Sam Jackson makes, constantly at odds with McClane and everyone else. The pair race around the city playing Simon’s games, all the while Simon is filling dump truck after dump truck with gold bars.
This is a movie that to this day, if I catch it on TV I have to watch it, and it was this, combine with Pulp Fiction, that made Sam Jackson a household name.
US Release: May 19, 1995 Director: John McTiernan Notable Cast: Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Irons, Aldis Hodge, Dick Cheney, and Anthony Peck. Oscar Wins/Nominations: 0/0 US/Total Box Office: $100,012,499/$366,101,666 Best Quote: “Yippie-kai-yay motherf–ker.” Triva: The line spoken by McClane “Smoking cigarettes and watching Captain Kangaroo” is taken from a song called “Flowers on the Wall” by The Statler Brothers, which appears in the Gold Watch section Pulp Fiction (1994), also featuring Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson.
How 90’s is it? – Kinda 90’s. This movie, unlike a lot of the other ones on this list isn’t unique in style to the decade and could really fit in any time period, so for that it gets an Aerosmith T-Shirt, a Coke, and a smile.
4. The Rock
This is the movie that made Nic Cage, at least for a while, an action star, leading him to later do some movies as Con Air, Face/Off, and Gone in Sixty Seconds. And it reminded people the reason that Sean Connery was one of the world’s first real action stars – He’s a badass.
This was also Michael Bay’s follow-up to Bad Boys, which tricked us into thinking he’d never do a bad movie. Bay’s stylistic camera shots that averaged less than 3 seconds each, and the fast paced flow of plot helped to define the decade’s ‘Action Identity’, and no movie exemplifies that more than The Rock.
How 90’s is it? – Maximum 90’s. This movie is so 90’s in fact that it’s gonna get a OJ Trial Transcript and signed Tanya Harding Ice Skate.
3. True Lies
Schwarzenegger’s last truly great movie, and no surpirse he was paired with Terminator scribe and director James Cameron. This movie examines some of the everyday life stuff that a Schwarzenegger character would have to deal with. The most memorable scene however, isn’t one centered around Arnold, but around Jamie Lee Curtis…
Bill Paxton and Tom Arnold added quite a bit more humor than was in Schwarzenegger and Cameron’s previous collaborations. True Lies marks the end of an era, which at the time we did not know, but this would be last truly great movie to star the Governator (at least to date). This is for Arnold almost what Unforgiven is for Clint Eastwood. A movie where he plays a character that is very similar, but in a different light. Unforgiven is Clint once he is old and broke down, while True Lies is a comedic look at the behind the scenes of his life. The movie was obviously a huge hit and almost spawned a 2002 sequel, but tensions after 9/11 caused them to delay, and as of 2011 they have not moved forward.
US Release: July 15, 1994 Director: James Cameron Notable Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold, Bill Paxton, Tia Carrere, Eliza Dushku, and Charlton Heston. Oscar Wins/Nominations: 0/1 (Nom. – Best Visual Effects) US/Total Box Office: $146,282,411/$378,882,411 Best Quote: “Same thing happened to me with wife number two, ‘member? I have no idea nothing’s going on, right? I come home one day and the house is empty, and I mean completely empty. She even took the ice cube trays out of the freezer. What kind of a sick bitch takes the ICE CUBE trays out of the FREEZER?” Triva: Spencer Trilby (Heston) is based on Nick Fury, the Marvel character. Like Fury, he has an eye-patch, same mannerisms, and heads a peacekeeping organization.
How 90’s is it? – It has Tom Arnold in it. Is that answer enough? No? Ok, well if came from a time where you could still have Middle Eastern terrorists in movies instead of them just being used as Red Herrings. For that I award a retroactive failing grade from the “PC Police” for being too awesome.
2. The Matrix
When I saw the trailer for this movie I thought: “Gonna be all special effects, no story”. Boy was I wrong. The fact of the matter is The Matrix had some of the best action sequences I’ve ever seen, and the advancements in special effects changed the way movies were made. The story was very similar to that of the Terminator Franchise. Futuristic war against the machines, one man destined to save humanity and all that jazz. So it’s not that the concept was as new as people thought at the time, rather it was presented in a new way that dropped jaws. Nothing like this had ever been seen visually and that is what made people go back to see it for a 2 or 3rd time.
Kenau hadn’t really taken advantage of the success of Speed, and the weakening grip that Stallone and Schwarzenegger had on the Action genre. It looked as though he could be the next big thing, replacing aging stars like Van Damme, Segal, and even Bruce Willis. But it was 5 years until The Matrix came out and he really hit one out of the park.
This movie did something else too. It launched the career of Hugo Weaving, who played Agent Smith. If you don’t recognize the name, you might recognize his resume: The Matrix trilogy, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, V for Vendetta, The Wolfman, and the voice of ‘Megatron’ in the Transformers movies. He will also be playing ‘The Red Skull’ in the upcoming Captain America: The First Avenger.
The movie itself simply changed the whole industry, and remains (despite a slew of terrible sequels) extremely popular still today, more than a decade after it’s release.
US Release: March 31, 1999 Directors: Andy Wachowski & Lana Wachowski Notable Cast: Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, Joe Pantoliano, and Gloria Foster. Oscar Wins/Nominations: 4/4 (Won – Editing, Sound Editing, Visual Effects, Sound) US/Total Box Office: $171,479,930/$463,517,383 Best Quote: “I’d like to share a revelation that I’ve had during my time here. It came to me when I tried to classify your species and I realized that you’re not actually mammals. Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You’re a plague and we are the cure.” Triva: This cast almost looked very different – Jean Reno turned down the role of Agent Smith for Godzilla instead. Ewan McGregor turned down the part of Neo for Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. And Sean Connery was originally offered the role of Morpheus, but turned it down saying he couldn’t understand the script.
How 90’s is it? – Cutting Edge 90’s! This movie gets a ‘White Zombie’ CD and a new trench coat.
1. Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Without a doubt, the 90’s movie I’ve seen the most times (edging out The Sandlot and Mallrats) is Terminator 2. It was no surprise to me that this turned out #1 as it was at the top of almost everyone’s list.
This is probably Arnold at his absolute best, and I doubt we’ll ever see him do anything this good again. This movie, brought in over $500 million at the Box Office and shattered records all over the place. It held the record for opening weekend Box Office of an R rated movie for 12 years, and still holds the record for the biggest Box Office increase for a sequel over the original with over a 400% jump.
The movie’s effects, groundbreaking in 1991, still hold up now, 20 years after it’s release. Before the massively over-rated Titantic and Avatar movies, James Cameron made sweet shit like this. And as far as I’m concerned, there is no argument to be made against this being atop the list. It is simply, as perfect a 90’s action movie as you can ask for.
US Release: July 3, 1991 Director: James Cameron Notable Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong, Robert Patrick, Earl Boen, Joe Morton, Jenette Goldstein, Xander Berkeley, Nikki Cox, Danny Cooksey, and S. Epatha Merkerson. (Michael Biehn also appears in the Director’s Cut…) Oscar Wins/Nominations: 4/6 (Won – Sound Editing, Visual Effects, Makeup, Sound) US/Total Box Office: $204,843,345/$519,843,345 Best Quote: “I need your clothes, boots and your motorcycle.” Triva: The Minigun used in the Cyberdyne scene was so heavy that Arnold Schwarzenegger was in fact the only person on stage that could carry the gun.
How 90’s is it? – It was Trend-setting 90’s! This movie popularized many 90’s trademarks and for that it’s gets an autographed photo of George Thorogood, season 3 of The Simpsons, and an unopened copy of Windows ’95.