Podzilla 1985

Friday, April 19, 2013

I wonder if Bill Pullman is nice.

      I'm not above giving advice that I myself would probably never take. But then again, I don't think any of us are. You've probably heard it said that you should never meet your heroes. At least I like to think you've all heard that. If not I'm guessing you're young. But I promise that's a thing people say. The reason being, the reality of who that person is won't likely match the ideal of them you have in your head. Well, I'm going to take it a step further. Not only should you probably never meet your heroes, but you should probably just avoid reading anything about them deeper than somewhat vague generalities.

 Believe it or not, there was a time when the public didn't have constant access to celebrities and the paparazzi wasn't really a thing. No one was able to read Dean Martin's constant drunken tweets, see footage of Dean Martin stumbling out of a club drunk on TMZ or see footage from someone's camera phone of Dean Martin going off on a racially insensitive, slurred, alcohol fueled rant.(For you kids, Dean Martin liked to drink). Point being, the constant access we have to famous people today is unprecedented. We can tweet directly to them and possibly get a response that didn't have to go through their handler or publicist. Which leads us to seeing things like Amanda Bynes unravel before our very eyes in 140 characters or less.

Now, I'm a firm believer that while everyone post-"The Greatest Generation" is generally bad examples of the human race...at the same time, human nature remains the same. For example, I have a feeling if Marilyn Monroe had access to social media and the overbearing paparazzi existed then, she wouldn't be treated as this "classy" role model for women(I still don't get it). In other words, she'd be mocked in the same way we mock pretty much any of the modern actresses or female celebrities. She'd post stupid things on Twitter. We'd see every dirty affair and there would possibly be a sex tape. Paris Hilton is seen as a "slut" and girls quote Marilyn Monroe on their facebook pages. Yeah, it's dumb. But the past is seen with rose tinted glasses...or lenses...or something. I don't remember the phrase. Shut up I hate you.

So to get back to my point, at one time "Never meet your heroes" had a different meaning. The chances of someone actually doing that was much slimmer and the ideals of who they were weren't necessarily effected by every rambling thought they had online or mistake they made caught on a phone. They were for the most part, what we would've seen on screen or read about. It was a romantic notion that they were classier, wiser ideals for us to look up to. Like Superman. Not the dirty truth. Like Batman.(ahem...sorry about that). Without the filter that is their publicists, limited access, etc, we'd know their views on everything and their personalities. Suddenly they may not be the lovable rascal or graceful beauty we see on TV. They're your smelly, idiot neighbor upstairs who yells a lot and has aggressive, awkward sex.

My advice to everyone now is not only never meet your heroes if you want to keep that untarnished image, but it's probably a good idea to try not to know too much about them as well. You may not want to read their Twitter feed or blog if they have one. Hey, some may be smart and keep things very general while keeping their private lives and views separate from the public image, and that's great. Other times you have someone turn into a political blowhard(well they are if you disagree with them) and you just have to think "Crap...I like them. Oh well.". And I assume if you do agree with them, you'll love them more.

(a note: I realize I'm focusing heavily on non-political figures and those who tend to only put out a product that's purely for entertainment. Obviously if you're heroes are political or religious figures, you won't care if they share their views on those subjects. Though they could still be jerks.)

Of course, anyone is entitled to offering up their views on political/religious issues, as long as they realize that if they're in the public eye, they'll most likely alienate half those people. And those of us that make up the general public have to realize they're people with thoughts just like us. If we don't want those thoughts to effect how we view that person, limit yourself to only the product they put out. Sometimes they put their more extreme views out there and it's unavoidable.(the whole Jim Carrey/Jenny McCarthy being anti-inoculations thing being one example). If you disagree with that movement, you may have been completely turned off by their involvement.(Though I doubt "hero" is a good term for either of them but let's play it fast and loose with the term just for this topic)

I hope that all makes some kind of sense.
I'm sure a lot of people would argue that making people like actors or writers out to be "heroes" isn't really healthy anyway, but shut up and don't ruin this post!

All that being said, I'd really like to meet Bill Murray. He's not really my hero but I can't exactly meet Jesus at the moment.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Project Runway: TEAMS!!!

I know I haven't been staying on top of things as far as Project Runway goes this season, but there's a reason for that. I wasn't sure how I felt about it. Season eleven's twist was that every challenge would be a team challenge. Even to me it sounded like a fashion fiasco waiting to happen. Though they proved me wrong.

Most of the contestants were pleasant to one another, though a few too bossy and demanding. Yet I managed to pick a few favorites from the herd. The finals are coming up quickly and thus far it's been narrowed down to the final four. I'm pretty sure from previews though, that only three will really get to show at fashion week. 

Let's take a closer look shall we...

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Let the Music Play

Dance your cares away, worries for another day... If only we could live as Fraggles. A life of games, songs and fun, with an average work week of one half hour, and your biggest concern being "when's lunch?"

I spent many a day, as a child, immersed in the world of the Fraggles. Part of what has kept this world in my heart is the music in it. For years when it was off the air all I had was a cassette tape and a sing-a-long book to remind me of the show I loved.  This month Fraggle Rock will be celebrating their 30th anniversary and to kick it off I'm going to share with you my top 10 favorite Fraggle songs.

Friday, April 12, 2013

God is Gone Baby, Gone

Like my site mate Phil I'd like to start this opinion piece by stating my views don't reflect the views of the site or its staff. In fact, they might not entirely be my views, just an interesting idea I had that I thought I would talk about. However, it will be a sensitive subject, so if you are upset by my words I do apologize. Let's start with a question I've asked myself quite a bit lately -

Is God dead?

It's a question that carries a lot of weight with it. Some people would give an emphatic "no," while others would say it's impossible for God to die because he never existed in the first place. There are those in the middle somewhere who don't know what they believe, and yet others who simply don't give a damn one way or the other.

Still, the existence of, and importance of, a "God" figure is far more important than even we today realize. Throughout history man has loved, lived for, sacrificed to, forsaken, and just plain ignored the presence of what most Americans would call God.

I'm not going to give you some history lesson on the Bible or God. It's not my place to inform you on the facts, just to give you a completely uninformed opinion based on gut instinct and a little bit of bitterness.

Let me throw out the "God is dead" ideology for a moment. That movement already exists and does a good enough job of alienating people as it is. I don't think God is dead, nor do I believe he never existed. I'm starting to believe the notion that there is a God, whatever you want to call him, and that he did create existence and he did watch our every movement.

I also believe he could care less about us anymore. That's right, God is not dead. He's just sick of our shit and decided to walk away.

 Friedrich Nietzsche writes in "The Gay Science" that -

"God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. Yet his shadow still looms. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?"

To take him at his literal meaning would be to assume that we have murdered God, which I find to be impossible. God is God. It would be like Jubilee murdering Apocalypse - not enough power to wipe out something so eternal. Humanity cannot kill God, but we can give him the middle finger and turn away from him. And, my friends, that is exactly what we've done.

Nietzsche wasn't talking about literal murder. I honestly believe he was speaking more of the spiritual side of things, where our impurity and willingness to sin has destroyed the essence of "God," much like the child who finds out that Santa Claus isn't real. Without the concept of God there is no God, and suddenly we're all murderers because we're the ones who symbolically took God out behind the shed and put him down with a shotgun full of disbelief.

But I want to take things a step further and offer the possibility that we haven't killed the image of God, but instead severed the good will between us. God exists, he created, and now he's abandoned.

What proof do I have? Nothing concrete. Then again, do you have concrete proof that he ever existed in the first place? My argument is in history. For as long as humanity has existed we have stolen, murdered, raped, and ruined everything we've ever had. We've been the most detestable creatures to ever be given free will, because we've taken that free will and decided to exploit it in any way we can as long as it benefits us.

God created us for reasons only he could understand. Maybe we were created to serve, or perhaps he is just a giving deity who decided to give us a shot at existence. Either way, we've pissed away our chances pretty aggressively and thoroughly, haven't we?

We choose not to believe in God. We choose the sins of the flesh over the preservation of the spirit. Your average human being only sees a path that rewards him the most. Even the best of the best, the most hardcore of the faithful, are often hate filled and judgmental. From the most left wing bisexual athiest liberal to the right wing conservative with the Jesus chain and his anti-fag messages of hate wrapped in faux compassion, we each betray the very messages that most religious texts attribute to "God."

So after thousands of years of telling God to shut the fuck up and let us handle things, why would he stick around? He gave us precious life, and all we do is squander it with selfishness, hate, jealousy, greed, and a myriad of other sins that we call a normal Tuesday.

If you look at all the miracles we experienced in the early days, and I'm just speaking of a strictly Christian based history, you start to see a progressive absence of God. While before waters were parted and resurrections were common place, today we find miracles in face shapes in potato chips or when it rains during a drought. Interesting events, but are they miracles? Where is the direct connection to the Lord that they speak of in the Bible?

I've spent countless nights on my knees in prayer, and I've cursed God when I reached my lowest points. In either scenario I got the same reply - none. God never answered, to neither console me or condemn me. I dealt with my own problems, faced my own sorrow, and lift myself out of bed every morning to face another day in a world where I'm not entirely sure he's there anymore.

But I don't think he's dead. He's just not looking at us anymore. He's sick and tired of all of our petty differences, of our self indulgences, and our selfish reasons for believing in him.

Before you say God would never turn his back on his people, let me simply ask -

Who the fuck are you? You are nothing. You mean nothing. Do you feel sympathy when you crush an ant under your foot? Do you regret smashing a fly because it bothered you? How do you figure you're more important than that to the creator of all existence? It is absolutely within God's right to turn his back on us because we are nothing more than a speck in the grand scheme of things, and he owes us nothing.

I'm not saying you should give up your faith. I'm not trying to convince you to throw in the towel because I'm nothing more than a voice carried on the wind along with millions of others. This is just a thought, nothing more, and it should only be viewed as such. In the end, God is the only one who knows and we'll all just have to wait and find out someday.


Johnathan Winters Passes Away

It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to Johnathan Winters, one of the greatest comedians of all time. He passed away today at age 87, leaving behind millions of laughs and memories. I was always a big fan of his comedy, as was my mother, who never seemed to be on the same comedic wave length as me but joined me in my admiration for the man. We mourn his loss, but celebrate his brilliant mind.

Fellow comedian Gilbert Gottfried wrote a wonderful piece on Winters death at CNN.com, and I strongly encourage you to read it here.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I'm better than you.

Disclaimer: The views poorly expressed in this post don't necessarily reflect those of the other authors here on Blogzilla Vs. Mechablogzilla 

Let's rap everyone. I'll turn my chair around and sit like A.C. Slater so you'll feel more comfortable with me and be more open.
"One day, I'll host an entertainment news show...and beat nerds"

Now follow me on another poorly written, unplanned thought process, visualized through text. This one is slightly more of a "serious" topic than usual, which means it'll be bad and not at all entertaining.

Society has a narcissism problem.
We don't care about anyone else while pretending to care about everyone else. We all think we have something important to say and we all think we're all the same. Plus there's a lot of "Why should that person have money and not me?! They're not better than me!"

I blame several things, which by themselves may not necessarily be the problem, but together, they create a Megazord of a societal impact. Okay...I can't actually prove that, but I bet I'm at least 70% correct.
This is the societal impact. Not the Megazord. The societal impact.

First of all, and what I'm guessing is an issue that's already been discussed and driven into the ground by now, we are all constantly connected to one another. Not by just social media exclusively, but every tiny thing we do can be shared. Sounds great right? Families that are scattered can keep in touch more easily than ever and Uncle Blue Dot won't miss a thing. It's fantastic. Except we can also share everything with every internet owning human being on earth. Our potential audience for every stupid thought or action we have(it's all stupid...I mean, check out my Twitter: @Tvs_Phil). But now with so many ways for us to put ourselves out there, and not just to keep in touch, everyone has a an increased chance to have their 15 minutes.
So, while we all kind of use the excuse "It's an easy way to stay connected with family and friends, yo!"(That's how you guys sound), the secret reason we all like social media and the internet is "the potential."
We all have opinions, talents and access to tools that make creating a product sooo easy, but also access to a worldwide audience.
 The saddest part about that fact is we're probably just the worst society of people to have this stuff. It's wasted on us for the most part it seems. Can you imagine all of the great thinkers, writers and entertainers now long gone with access to what we have now? No painstaking writing by hand. Instant access to a massive audience. Their actual words and inflections captured on the digital technology we all carry around in our pockets and complain about not being good enough.
"Follow me thusly @GChaucer17 & check out my YouTube page, you arses"

 Of course the catch here is that it'd be great if they were the people they were but with simply the access to the technology we have...BUT...we don't know that if they'd grown up with the technology, whether they'd actually turn out to be the people they were. Which kind of leads to my next point.

 Our society has become really sensitive and politically correct.
Now I'm guessing some people might disagree with that but for the most part, most people's opinions seem to agree with that. We're all just too terrible of people to fix anything.
Would you agree that there are some people out there who are better than others at certain things? WAIT! Stop right there! Everyone is equal and can do anything that anyone else can do. Also, we don't want to exclude anyone so there are no longer any "winners" or "losers". You get a trophy for participating. Every kid is special. Competition is nasty and hurts people's feelings.
Okay, well you see my point. I hope.
I hear a lot of stories about stuff like this coming out of elementary schools. Sure, you could doubt me. Call it hearsay or anecdotal if you wish. Doesn't make it any less true.
Look, I "get" it. We're trying to "think of the children". Only, we've taken it way too far. We're trying to protect our kids but not letting them grow and learn. This is creating narcissistic, entitled adult though.
We've changed our schools to be sensitive and PC, but then the kids are getting out into the real world where it quite simply isn't like that. Out here you have to work to get ahead and if you don't work hard in school, you'll most likely have to start at the bottom in the workplace. And out here people are looking out for themselves and their loved ones.
  So we get rid of any experience in having to compete or try and be better than anyone because "everyone's the same" and produce somewhat broken adults who expect help. But the strange irony here is that while we're trying to create a society of equals where no one person thinks they're better than another, that same process leaves out the fact that in the real world, in actual society, someone has to be at the top, leaving others at the bottom.
I won't get political but I'm sure one could argue there are those in places of leadership out in the real world that have the same intentions as what's going on in our schools, but I'll leave that alone.
Now, you may be saying "But it's not the school's job to raise the kids, it's the parent's" and I agree with that. Only this doesn't seem to be happening. But broken homes and terrible parenting is a topic for a different discussion.
But the hypersensitivity & political correctness doesn't just exist in the schools. Adults are afraid to judge anyone out of fear of offending, but at the same time, we all have opinions about everything and we think we're right.....like this blog entry.
The kids grow up. Leave school and come to the sudden realization that they have to stand out if they want to move up.
It's basically just a huge, life changing, mixed message.

Ok...so now that I've stumbled my way through those two basic points like the idiot I am, let's M*A*S*H them together like Frank and Hot Lips......(good Lord...that was just a terrible attempt at both humor & an analogy. I apologize. Terrible. Just terrible.)

Here's where we're at. We're all entitled, hypersensitive & politically correct. We're going about our lives believing everyone's right or great in their own way, with access to technology that connects everyone, shares everything and creates a stage for our "specialness".

Of course we're gonna be narcissistic. This shouldn't be a surprise, even with my muddy explanation.
They're probably all tweeting about that cool tree they saw.

We all think we're talented, funny, smart, etc, and we're gonna shove it in everyone's face. If they don't like it, it's their problem, not ours. We just haven't found our audience yet. 

Listen. The technology isn't a problem by itself. Teaching our kids to be sensitive of others isn't a bad thing if done properly. But raising a generation clumsily with our technology breeds narcissism.

Sure, I'm generalizing. I expect the problem to grow with future generations. Of course not everyone out there is like this. I'm sure you think you're not at all a spoiled, entitled, narcissist. But isn't that exactly what a spoiled, entitled, narcissist would think....

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Under the COVERs

One of the awesome things about Youtube (other than flash mob versions of dances and such) is the great covers of already amazing songs that are out there. Yes, there is good and bad... but there are some really great ones out there... I recently came across Chad Future.

He has done some English remix versions of some of my favorite k-pop songs. Not only are his covers good, but the videos for them are as well. It isn't just some person with a webcam, plinking on a piano and voice cracking out a tune. These are worth checking out. I am going to provide the originals to songs followed by the cover for it by Chad Future. But before I do that, here is what I have discovered about him.

Chad Future, whose real name is David Lehre from Detroit, trained in rapping and music production for 10 years. He has already had success as an award winning Director, even directed music videos for some of the biggest stars of Asia, plus has done work with Jason Derulo and other various groups/organizations. Chad Future seems to be quite creative, blending Korean and English for his own music... the first AK-Pop (American K-pop) artist... bring the style of k-pop, both of music and video, in his own way to the US.

I hope that you enjoy his work. Check out the videos below.

One Shot by B.A.P

One Shot Remix/Cover by Chad Future

Bounce by JJ Project

Bounce Remix/Cover by Chad Future

Crayon by G-Dragon (of Big Bang)

 Crayon Remix/Cover by Chad Future

Friday, April 05, 2013

Wesley Snipes - Freedom at last!

Proving that not even the United States government can keep a good vampire hunter down, badass actor
Wesley Snipes was released from prison today. 

He's been serving a couple of years for holding back some taxes owed to Uncle Sam, who may or may not be a vampire. Apparently protecting the nation from the scourge of the night isn't enough for big government, who saw fit to lock away Passenger 57. 

If they were being generous, they could have at least blocked Blade's movie "Gallowwalkers"  from ever seeing the light of day.

A farewell to Roger Ebert - or - The creeping realization of mortality

Roger Ebert died today. If that seemed sudden, I was hoping to reproduce the feeling I had when I read those words on IGN.com earlier.

Actually, let me go back and start this story from the beginning.

I realized recently that I've been sitting on the side lines for too long.

I started this blog years ago when it was a completely useless place for me to vent randomly and incoherently. I called it "Blogs THEY Don't Want You to Know About" because I had just been discussing this Kevin Trudeau guy with a coworker at GameStop. If you don't know who he is then you probably haven't been ripped off by him, but he put out a bunch of self help books that THEY don't want you to know about. As far as I know, he never specified who "they" were, but the title seemed catchy enough for me to rip off so I did and a seldom viewed blog in a sea of bloggers was created.

Fast forward to last year, and I decided to dust off the old keyboard and bitch about random things again. I had a couple of readers and developed an inflated sense of self importance. It wasn't until my interview with the lovely Christine Adams that people really started to take notice though. Suddenly my ramblings weren't enough to keep up with all the visitors I had to the blog, so I brought in some friends and like minded souls to share their insights as well. Things went well as I balanced the rechristened Blogzilla 1985 with my work for MMOSite.com, but I quickly found myself writing more for other sites than my own.

I have a new day job that lets me work with video games again, and that's swell. I've been getting more and more back to the old Shannon that existed before life took its Wiffle Bat of General Discomfort and smashed my teeth out. All was well, except for the thing I cherished most - my creativity.

It's been over a month since my last article and I missed connecting with my readers. I missed tricking myself into thinking people cared about my overwhelmingly biased and poorly written opinions.

I wanted back in.

It's not that Melissa, Lindsey, and Phil weren't doing well on their own. I enjoy their work and they bring a diversity to my site that is sorely needed. Also, the rest of the gang is still here, probably. Louie is off being a celebrity with DDP, Jake Roberts, and Scott Hall. Oz and Caz may very well have died, though.

But, for all of their hard work and talent, Blogzilla 1985 is my baby. It needs me as much as I need it. I decided to make my presence felt again and really push BZ85 to the next level that I had plans for before life managed to screw it all up.

I needed a first article, though. I wanted something topical to bounce back with. My original plan was to talk about the new MMO/TV hybrid "Defiance." Idea number two was to talk about Disney closing down LucasArts and what that meant to me as an old school gamer.

But then, with a heavy heart, I read what would be the real focus of this article. Roger Ebert passed away today after a long painful battle with cancer. I never want to write an article that deals with the loss of life, but his was a life that I had long admired. No, I didn't have to write this article - I needed to. It's people like Roger Ebert that made me realize the value of an opinion. An article about his loss is the least I could do in return.

Just like anyone else with dreams of Hollywood, I grew up watching Roger Ebert. I was introduced to his unique brand of infotainment by way of his weekly show with Gene Siskel, who sadly passed away many years ago now. Watching those two argue about movies was sometimes more entertaining the film they were reviewing.

Two memories stand out to me specifically. The first was when they reviewed "Mortal Kombat" and didn't completely tear it apart. I remember being so happy and so proud because I loved the movie, and if both Siskel and Ebert hated something I loved I kind of felt like maybe I was wrong. In this particular case they agreed that Christopher Lambert, some great choreography, and cheap CG made for a damn entertaining film. The second was an episode of the Simpsons, where a faux Siskel and Ebert argued childishly over the newest McBain film. Homer chuckles at the screen and talks about how much he enjoys watching the fat one argue with the bald one.

I could relate. For years I watched every week on WPSD Channel 6 as Siskel and Ebert waxed poetic on the latest and greatest hits. For a time I no longer wanted to write films - I just wanted to review them. You may not know who wrote some of your favorite films, but you'd be hard pressed to find someone who had never seen Siskel and Ebert. They were the tinsel town equivalent of Santa Claus, Hulk Hogan, or that guy from the Old Spice commercial. You know the one I'm talking about. The guy!!!

When Siskel passed away you could tell it just wasn't the same for Roger. He started to do the show with a revolving door of co-hosts before the producers settled on Richard Roeper. They had a nice chemistry together, but it was a timid substitute for the fire that burned between two long time friends and rivals. I'm not trying to take anything away from Roeper, who is a damn fine writer and entertainer in his own right. Siskel and Ebert were just so incredible together that replacing either one with anyone else would have created the same result.

It was during Ebert's time with Roeper that I began to think about my own mortality. Gene Siskel was such a presence that I still held on to child like beliefs that someone like that could never die. He would live to be a thousand and I would always turn on the TV late on the weekends to see him and Roger sparring over the flavor of the week. When he died I realized that no one lives forever, and that time was much like it was described in Anna Nalick's most famous song - an hour glass glued to the table. I began to notice that no one lives forever, faces fade, and time is an unforgiving bastard.

Ebert's health deteriorated over the years as his battle with cancer turned into a merciless war. I remember seeing the Esquire cover where he first appeared without his jaw and being frightened of what I saw. It wasn't the way he looked that frightened me. I've seen my share of horrors, and a courage man battling a terrible disease did not frighten me. No, it was the fact that this was not the same man I watched every week that made me uneasy. I remember how Roger Ebert looked, as if he were a member of my family that I visited with when I could. This face I saw now was familiar but unsettling, and the article that was attached to it stated very matter-of-factly that he was dying. I know why that face made me feel so horribly now. I was staring into the eyes of my own eventual demise. I was looking at the face of the future, where you can't stop time and everything you know will eventually disappear.

The news of Roger Ebert's death cemented my fear that I will die some day. I will keep getting older day by day, regardless of what I accomplish or how much time I waste. I can count every second of every day or just sleep for a week straight and it will come to the same finale - my finale. As I grow older, more and more of the people I grew up idolizing pass away. Roger Ebert isn't just a loss for me as someone I respected and emulated. His death signifies the very real outcome that I will some day leave this world behind, and everything I cherish within.

Roger Ebert loved his work very much, and even greater was his love for his wife Chaz and his longtime friend Gene Siskel. I can respect the man for his many accomplishments and contributions to the world of entertainment, but I will mourn the man for the aspects that you don't normally care about when it comes to a celebrity. We so often criticize the bad and judge the mistakes that we become jaded to the fact that this very real person is gone. Ebert had no addictions. nor did he live a careless life that ended his existence too early. He was seventy years old when he died, and if any man had lived a full life it would be him.

I can only hope that if I, God forbid, live to be seventy I can say I lived a life half as meaningful as his was. I know I cannot escape death, and though I struggle daily with the fear of leaving everything behind for the great unknown, I take solace in the little things. I enjoy things like the warmth of a loving soul, the crispness of a cold Pepsi, and the starry eyed innocence of a child so enamored with two complete strangers talking about films like they were the most important creations on Earth.

Thank you, Roger. As cliched as it may sound, the balcony is now closed.

I think the man himself said it best in a sadly prophetic post earlier this week about his decision to slow down his work load due to the reemergence of cancer.

"So on this day of reflection I say again, thank you for going on this journey with me. I'll see you at the movies."

I highly recommend you read Esquire's piece on Roger Ebert as it a fascinating look into the waning days of a once in a lifetime celebrity. For your convenience you can read it here