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It’s interesting that the only two network half-hour comedies that I watch these days… happen to be run by the same individual, Mike Schur.  He made his bones on The Office (where he also played Mose), and he’s one of the show-runners of both Parks and Recreation and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.  Here’s are two wonderfully detailed interviews with Mr. Schur, the first of which looks back at the first season of Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and the second of which looks back at season seven of Parks and Rec, with a focus on the season finale.  These are great interviews and well-worth your time if you’re a fan of either show.

This is a terrific, in-depth interview with Mel Brooks, discussing Blazing Saddles.  Get comfy and enjoy.

R.I.P. H.R. Giger.

I was sad to read of the passing of Efrem Zimbalist Jr.  He had many great roles but for me he will always be the iconic voice of Alfred from Batman the Animated Series and many subsequent DC animated projects.  He was absolutely perfect as Alfred, and when I read the character’s dialogue in any comic book I always hear Mr. Zimbalist’s voice.  I am really heartbroken that we’ll never again get to hear him voice Alfred in any future DC animated film or show.

Speaking of Batman, I’ve gotta say, this first official glimpse of Ben Affleck as Batman (in Zack Snyder’s upcoming untitled Superman Vs. Batman film) is pretty great.  Love the costume.  Love the small bad ears.  Love Ben’s Batman chin.  Love that classic look of the Batmobile.

So, I bashed The Amazing Spider-Man 2 in my review.  I’ve been glad to see that I’m not alone in my disappointment with the film.  Click here to read Film Critic Hulk take the film apart.  Click here for io9’s very funny list of Amazing Spider-Man 2 FAQs.  (Their one-sentence answer to the question “What is The Amazing Spider-Man 2 about?” is hysterical and 100% spot-on.)  Finally, this article No One Cares About Peter Parker’s Parents is also 100% spot-on and echoes a point I made in my review.

This is cool: apparently back in the day, Criterion released the first three James Bond films on laserdisc, with commentary tracks featuring candid comments from many of the people involved in the making of the films.  When Bond producer Albert Broccoli objected, the discs were recalled from stores.  Here’s the full story.  Now the commentaries have re-surfaced and are available to download for free here!  I have downloaded them all and look forward to giving them a listen soon.  Should be fun!

This is a cute article, tracking the many appearances of “A113” in Pixar movies…

Beware, this might take up a lot of your time, but it’s great: a collection of “Perfect Shots” from movies.

This looks like a fan-edit I need to track down: a re-edit that combines all three Star Wars prequel into one film.  If I can get my hands on this, I’ll be sure to write about it here to let you all know what I think!

In other Star Wars news, I was interested this post ranking the 10 Best Stories in the Star Wars Expanded Universe.  The EU, long-since considered official Star Wars canon, is now out the window because of Star Wars: Episode VII, but I was interested to see if there were any worthwhile stories in there.  I read Timothy Zahn’s Heir to the Empire when it was originally released back in 1991, and it blew me away.  I loved that trilogy of novels, they were awesome Star Wars stories back when I never expected there to be any new Star Wars stories other than the Original Trilogy.  I read a few additional Star Wars books, but found them mostly disappointing, so I never continued to follow the Star Wars novels the way I have always enjoyed the Star Trek books.  But there are a few books on this list that sound interesting, like the Darth Plageuis one and what they call the Dark Lord trilogy.  I might give those a read one day.  I was also glad to see the Dark Empire comic books on the list.  That first Dark Empire mini-series also blew me away.  That came out even before Tomothy Zahn’s Heir to the Empire book, and it was the very first story I’d ever read that attempted to chronicle what happened after Return of the Jedi.  The painted artwork by Cam Kennedy was gorgeous, and the story by Tom Veitch — in which Luke turns to the Dark Side — was extraordinary.  Unfortunately the series petered out, but boy, I still remember the thrill of those first few issues.  Great stuff.

In one final bit of Star Wars news: no Wedge in Episode VII???  Bummer!

Boy I am excited for Netflix’s upcoming Daredevil show.  I’m also pleased that ABC is going ahead and committing to 13 episodes of Agent Carter, a 1946-set series featuring Sharon Carter (Hayley Atwell, reprising her from from the first Captain America film).  The Agent Carter short-film from the Iron Man Three blu-ray was awesome, a great proof-of-concept for this show.  I just hope it’s better-executed than the very disappointing Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  (I’ll have more to say about that show on the site next week.)  But c’mon, a period-piece about the founding of S.H.I.E.L.D., starring a butt-kicking dame?  Sounds awesome to me.  Find a way to work in Neal McDonough as Dum Dum Dugan and I am sold.

And lastly for today, has Game of Thrones reached a nerd singularity?  Good lord I love that show.  Have a great weekend, everyone!

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