The X-Men TAS Podcast: BONUS – X-Men: First Class (2011)

Posted in on October 15th, 2018 by Willie

Another week and another less than stellar X-Men movie…you might disagree with us big time here but please join us as we discuss…

  • A strange mix of great actors and bad actors!
  • The terrible dialog!
  • For a movie set in the 1960s, it sure feels like 2011 in nearly every way!
  • How they screwed up Moira, Emma, Havok, Banshee and Mystique!
  • How we would have made the movie better!

Yea, we got issues but the conversation sure was fun and we think you’ll enjoy this in depth conversation as well! Make sure to subscribe to our podcast via iTunes or Stitcher and tell all your friends about it! Also, find us on Facebook! Also, follow Willie Simpson on Twitter and please join our Facebook Group!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

"Man on the Moon" Walter Cronkite's Broadcast

Posted in NASA, Youtube Favs on August 25th, 2012 by Willie

UPDATE: Neil Armstrong passed away today at the age of 82. I posted this last August 13th, 2011, and as a tribute to his extraordinary life, I’m reposting it today in tribute to one of mankind’s greatest ambassadors for wisdom and peace.

I’m a huge fan of John F. Kennedy, the 34th President of the United States.  JFK was a brilliant man who had a vision to send Americans to the moon before the Soviet Union did it.  He correctly surmised that even though we were behind in the space race, if Americans could send a man to the moon first, the historic achievement would be so vast that it would place us light years ahead of the Soviets in the race to explore space.  Here is a highlight of his most famous speech about going to the moon delivered at Rice University in 1962.

The full speech is extraordinary, and you can watch it by clicking anywhere on this sentence.

On July 20th, 1969, Kennedy’s vision came to fruition as the Apollo 11’s lunar module spacecraft, Eagle, touched down on the moon’s surface in the “Sea of Tranquility.”  Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin spent 21 hours on the moon’s surface while Command Module Pilot Michael Collins orbited in the Columbia before he picked them up.  They returned to Earth on July 24th, splashing down in the Pacific Ocean.  It was one of human history’s greatest achievements ever.  I was born in 1984, and consequently missed this historic occasion.  Luckily, the kind users of youtube have uploaded a special documentary of the original CBS broadcast, expertly hosted by Walter Cronkite, which I will display below.  It is a thrilling document of history, and makes you kind of sad that very little in today’s news and course of human events can rival the majestic profundity of this moment.  I hope you enjoy this as much as I have.





Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Beatles, Entire Ed Sullivan Performance, Remastered

Posted in The Beatles, Youtube Favs on December 13th, 2011 by Willie

When the Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan show on a Sunday night in February of 1964, 73 million Americans tuned in.  Originally Ed offered the Beatles Manager Brian Epstein a top dollar billing for a single show, but Brian turned it down and negotiated a 3 consecutive Sunday appearance for practically no payment.  The exposure the Beatles received on those 3 Sundays ended up being worth billions in future revenue; one of Brian’s more savvy deals.   When the Beatles took the stage that winter night, they dominated the top 10 of American pop charts, breaking records before the public could even see them.  Beatlemania was surging, and their nationally televised performance turned the phenomenon nuclear.  In this clip, you get to see John, Paul, George, and Ringo give one of the most iconic and singular performances in the history of music.  They look incredibly young and cool, giving one of their better live performances of their career, if not the best, considering what was on the line.  Even though they were just rocking a small live TV audience of screaming girls, you can tell they know that countless millions of eyeballs are on them.  They’re never actually sweating, but John and Paul are clearly the most nervous.  Paul’s nervousness comes out in the small quiver in his voice and with exaggerated stage movements like extra head wobbling.  John looks confident, but stiff in his defiant pose.  You can tell he feels a bit naked and alone up there too, being positioned prominently on the stage, with George joining Paul on the backing vocals.  George for that matter comes off incredibly, pulling off complicated and flawless solos in “Till There Was You,”  and “I Saw Her Standing There” in particular.  He also looks fantastic standing in the middle anchoring Paul and John.  The real star is Ringo.  Every time the camera glides on him, he shows a natural full range of emotions scaling from goofy enthusiasm , jokey smiles and grins, all highlighted by his dramatic and awesome drumming.  Ringo was always the best and most natural guy in the group when it came to charming the cameras, a skill that he is criminally overlooked for in figuring the group’s colossal success.  When the Beatles finally finish, they still seem nervous, sensing that their perfect performance is just the start of a whole new wave of outrageous reality heading their way.  Anyone, if you’ve never seen this, give it a watch, and soak in all the mad greatness.  Enjoy.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Ted Kennedy's Eulogy for Robert F. Kennedy

Posted in Politics, Robert F. Kennedy, Youtube Favs on September 12th, 2011 by Willie

Revolution, liberty, discovery, and moral courage.  These were themes prevalent in Ted Kennedy’s eulogy for his brother Bobby, after his insane assassination in 1968.  Drawing directly from one of Bobby’s greatest speeches, Ted quoting Bobby, said that, “Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope.  And crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.” Well, I don’t know about you, but that’s one of the greatest things I’ve ever heard or read.  To me, it encapsulates the frontier thinking that marked the cultural and social revolutions going on in the 1960s.  Bobby originally gave that speech in apartheid afflicted South Africa in 1966, where racism and intolerance were raging.  Ted’s eulogy for his brother was also perhaps his finest moment and speech, summing up his brother’s life by stating that “his brother not need to be idealized, or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life,” and that “he be remembered as a good and decent man, who saw wrong and tried to right it, saw suffering and tried to heal it, and saw war and tried to stop it.”  It’s at this point, where Ted’s voice begins to quaver, and he delivers Bobby’s greatest thought ever, “some men see things as they are, and say why, I dream things that never were, and say why not.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Robert F. Kennedy, My Hero

Posted in Politics, Robert F. Kennedy, Youtube Favs on September 10th, 2011 by Willie

I watched President Obama’s speech on jobs last night.  It stirred something very emotional in me.  It wasn’t because the speech was so wonderful, though I thought it was one of Obama’s better oratories, but perhaps because I too am unemployed.  I was laid off last May from a job that I worked at for four years.  I performed the job with excellence, always achieving the highest raise in my yearly reviews, and winning the praise and respect of my coworkers and bosses.  It wasn’t a great job; it paid poorly, and there was little room for advancement, but it did cover my bills and provided me stability in a fierce economic climate of doom and gloom.  I also naively thought the job was recession proof because of my low pay and high competence, but like millions of others, I was laid off because they claimed that they couldn’t afford to keep paying my health insurance.  At least that’s what I was told.  Obama’s speech last night moved me, and I hope his leadership is strong enough to see it through, but the insane political circus of the day fills me with doubt.  Politically, I believe in great leaders.  I believe in leaders who can inspire and touch the masses with truth and courage.  I believe in leaders who demand excellence from themselves and excellence from their country, and the world.  I believe in leaders who feel heavily the weight of the awesome powers they seek, and who knowingly carry the terrible responsibility such powers demand once they possess them.  This is why Robert F. Kennedy is my hero.  He represented all of those things, and elevated political discourse into poetry of the highest magnitude.  He embraced all people, and never spoke down to any audience.  He also never pandered to audiences, as he was unafraid to tell them the truth even if it made him more unpopular.  The more I learn about Robert F. Kennedy, the more sad I become contemplating his senseless killing.  What’s amazing is that Robert Kennedy felt this same sadness when Martin Luther King Jr. was brutally assassinated.  Not only did he feel sadness, he felt a responsibility to face a justifiably irate crowd of black Indianans and offer what little solace he could.  He didn’t speak down to them, or tell them that rioting or thoughts of revenge were wrong, instead he persuaded them to examine the tragedy not through a prism of violence, but through a prism of peace.  Eluding to his brother John’s death for the first time in a public forum, he quoted the Greek poet Asechylus, “even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget, falls drop by drop upon the heart, until in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom, through the awful grace of God.”  His entire speech was unprepared and eloquent beyond any other leader’s ability.  I think if he lived, and was elected president, he could have been another Lincoln.  Sadly, his greatest bond with Lincoln, was his untimely death brought about by the bullet of a madmen.  Enjoy this video of Robert F. Kennedy, and expect another update on the man tomorrow.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Simon and Garfunkel, The Sounds of Silence

Posted in Paul Simon, Simon and Garfunkel, Youtube Favs on June 21st, 2011 by Willie

It’s part 96 of my youtube countdown, and we are getting so close to the end!  This time I have Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Sounds of Silence,” from the album of the same name.  When I was crafting the title of this entry, I noticed that the original version of the song was not titled, “The Sound of Silence,” as I had thought, but was pluralized.  Both the plural and singular version of the song are correct however as later releases were known as the “The Sound of Silence.”  Paul Simon originally wrote this haunting folk ballad write after John F. Kennedy’s assassination, but the song was not an immediate hit.  When the song started to become a hit in the mid 60s, Simon and Garfunkel were no longer working together, but the success of the tune, reworked by producers to give it a more pop sound, reunited the boys and launched them into the mainstream of cultural significance.  The live performance I found here reflects the original version of the song with its minimalist beatnik production.  In it, the guys are so young and dorky, Garfunkel gives a real proto-hippie moralizing speech, and of course they flawlessly play the song, achieving that perfection they always shot for.  Check it out!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,