Is That My Bestie In A Serververssie?
On Space Jam: A New Legacy, my bizarre and prolonged fixation with The Walking Dead, Black Widow, and Elvira Lind's husband breaking the internet once more.
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We’re keeping it short and sweet this week! Last Sunday, I saw Space Jam: A New Legacy with my brother. Why? We grew up playing basketball and one of us (I won’t say who) owns a Miami Heat-era LeBron jersey. Needless to say, it did not serve Space Jam. It barely served Jam.
I was, however, pleasantly surprised that one Steven Yeun made a small cameo in the film as a Warner Bros. executive. Alongside Sarah Silverman, Yeun was tasked with facilitating a meeting between LeBron and Al G. Rhythm (Don Cheadle), WB’s algorithm that decides what combination of IP they should smush together and call it a film. Al G wanted LeBron to scan and insert his likeness into different Warner Media properties, a la Seinfeldvision from 30 Rock. You know, like LeBronrry Potter or LeBron of Thrones. I actually would watch the hell out of LeBron of Thrones.
Steven Yeun had like three lines, maximum, but he was looking super cute. Get that bag, sweetie! You go, boo! In other Steven Yeun-related news, director Stephen Karam shared a first look at his upcoming film, The Humans—an adaptation of his award-winning play, for A24 on Instagram. Yeun is pictured with his back facing the camera, in a white shirt, probably looking super cute in the front, too.
Space Jam: A New Legacy also stars Sonequa Martin-Green, fellow The Walking Dead alumnus, as a fictionalized version of LeBron James’ wife. Martin-Green played Sasha Williams on TWD, younger sister to Tyrese Williams (Chad Coleman). Whilst I don’t recall Glenn and Sasha sharing major screentime post-Season 4, I’d like to think this standalone Space Jam sequel is a low-key Walking Dead reunion! Maybe Glenn and Sasha went to heaven, but heaven looks a lot like LeBron inking a deal with a major studio! Who knows! Martin-Green currently stars as Michael Burnham on Star Trek: Discovery, a Star Trek I enjoy quite a bit. She also plays one of my favourite New Girl characters—Rhonda. Rhonda is a woman who shares Winston’s (Lamorne Morris) love for pranks, but always takes it a step too far. She has an iconic catchphrase: “You just got Rhonda-d!”. She tricked Winston into marrying her before she was deployed overseas to serve in the military. Rhonda is hilarious. I think of her often.
With regards to Space Jam: A New Legacy as a film, it was meh. It was all over the place, it was vapid, but I’m sure there are people out there that had fun with it. Capitalism doesn’t breed innovation, it bred whatever fresh hell this movie was. There’s a terrifying moment where Don Cheadle transforms into a 6’8” CGI version of himself to play against LeBron. Klay Thompson’s CGI Animorphs version of himself is called ‘Wet-Fire’ because he’s made of water and fire. I would’ve gone with Half-Vatar (like Avatar) but I don’t think Warner Brothers have the rights to The Last Airbender at all. Damian Lillard plays a robot that can freeze time, but gets absolutely merked by the Granny from Looney Tunes. It’s a ride, but I wouldn’t call it a journey. Do with that what you will. But yes, Steven Yeun is in this for a bit. That is my bestie in a Serververssie. Or at least, pitching a Serververse? I don’t know. I wouldn’t take it too seriously.
So True, Deadsties
I have recently been reacquainted with this image of Steven Yeun and Jon Bernthal:
The AMC-Frank Darabont lawsuits were settled earlier this week, which means I can now freely talk about Season 2 of The Walking Dead without feeling weird about it. Season 2 was not that girl, but it introduced us to Maggie, Herschel’s farm, and this moment from Episode 5 (‘Chupacabra’) that drove me insane:
By this point, Bernthal’s character, Shane Walsh, had already been driven to insanity by his feelings for Lori Grimes (Sarah Wayne Callies) and his homicidal jealousy towards her husband/his best friend Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln). Shane, at one point, shaved his head, and spends the rest of the season rocking this look. It’s a good look. My theory stands: the more traumatised the Walking Dead character, the hotter their actor becomes.
That selfie of Yeun and Bernthal is seared into my mind. It’s so mundane, so simple, yet so … [redacted]. I don’t think I’ll ever come up with the right words to describe a selfie of two actors I have huge crushes on. I love seeing hot dudes do regular shit. It’s great. It’s an image. “What a picture!” A la Pacino in Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood! They can pull faces all they want, but they still look good! It’s mad! I think I’m going mad! In the immortal words of One Direction in their underrated classic Fireproof: “I think I’m gonna lose my mind.”
I think I’ve been really trying to re-examine what exactly about The Walking Dead and its cast members have me in a chokehold, but also bring me so much comfort. It’s more than just nostalgia—I was no more than 12 when the show first aired and I stopped watching it when Yeun was killed off. I enjoy other projects that Bernthal and Yeun have done post-TWD, so it could just be that I’m a fan of their work and their beautiful faces are precious to me. Is it because TWD is a major proponent of the found family trope and that shit just hits the spot for me? Is it because there is just something about Norman Reedus I just can’t wrap my head around but I am certain it’s his Scorpio Rising? Is it because TWD is a show I can bond with my mum over? Is it all of those things? Is it more?
A completely unrelated side-note for any of you fellow TWD enjoyers: The Saviours are a group that’s well known for their ominous and menacing whistling. So, when Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) discovers that one of his Saviours cannot whistle or cannot learn how to whistle (which I know plenty of people can’t, and that’s okay), what does he do with them? Does he kill them? Does he demote them? Does he put them through a whistling bootcamp? I’d like to know what would happen there.
With unprecedented times becoming the precedent, I need something familiar and safe to cope. I don’t want to overdo it. I think my mum and I have watched The Walking Dead and Fear The Walking Dead an almost unhealthy amount of time. I find it a bit odd that my comfort show right now is about survivors of a literal deadly pandemic. It’s a little too on the nose even for me, a fan of noses. Lately, I’ve been feeling like I’m withering away. I can’t get excited for things I should be excited about. Every time I make an inch of progress, I get thrown across a mile in the opposite direction like some sort of sad javelin. It’s fine, it’s what it is, it’s part of the process. I just can’t help but be scared of whether or not this small coping mechanism might leave me stuck. I’m enjoying the comfort The Walking Dead is providing for me right now. I worry I might regress into some childlike state of complete obsession to the point I’ll lose interest in everything else, my own well-being included. It sounds dramatic, I know, and a damn TV show—an AMC property no less—should not be able to do this to me. I don’t think it is actually doing what ever this is to me. I’m just being irrational and I’m trying to throw someone else other than myself under the bus.
Forgive me for being a little too candid, it’s been a rough couple of weeks.
Anyway, The Walking Dead returns for its eleventh and final season this August, and I can’t wait. This is my equivalent to you lot losing Game of Thrones or The Avengers—two cultural phenomenons I also was there for but will now pretend not to care about. Screeners have been sent out and the folks that have seen the premiere episodes say it’s going to go apeshit. I’m excited. I guess I can be excited about something after all.
Not To Be Confused with the Iggy Azalea Song
I got to see Black Widow, the solo superhero film not the music video for a 2014 flop, last weekend. I saw it at home on my television, fully expecting myself to zone out or play Bratz: Total Fashion Makeover somewhere in the middle of the film. To my own surprise, I did not do either one of those things.
This isn’t as much a review as it is a little anecdote. I’m not the most tech savvy person when it comes to TVs. I have a degree in Film and Television, yet I do not know for the life of me how to fix an actual television. So when we were watching Black Widow, we ran into a teeny, tiny hiccup. I’m going to make this as spoiler-free as possible, but the first 20 minutes of the film are set in the 90s. I thought it was perfectly fine and dandy until we got about 40 minutes in, and I realised that 40 minutes is a long time to return to the present-day timeline of the story and still have it be in black and white. I thought it was an interesting choice to do a Marvel film in black and white—it’s giving espionage! But then I asked my friend Wing if the film is supposed to be in black and white for this long, and she informed me that the film isn’t supposed to be in black and white at all! Not a minute of the 2-hour ScarJoyride is meant to be monochrome!
Naturally, I freaked out. Did I get a faulty copy? Is my TV suddenly serving Wandavision teas? Nah. We just had the colour settings so wrong that all the colours were desaturated away. Isn’t that silly?
We finished the film in all its not-so-colourful MCU glory, and found that it was actually a little bolder in its aesthetics compared to its predecessors (at least with fellow besties like The Winter Soldier or Captain America: Civil War) and was actually pretty good. I think it’s in my Top 5. I am not a fan of Johannson, but I do miss Natasha. It should’ve been Hawkeye at the bottom of that cliff on Vormir, not her. But hey, What If? Right? Am I doing that right? Is that something?
Florence Pugh really made that film sing. She was so good. So funny, so smart, so emotionally grounded (at least for superhero blockbuster standards). And I loved that vest of hers. It had so many pockets. Rachel Weisz is a woman I would risk everything for. David Harbour has really found his pocket playing a certain kind of pathetic man, I’m here for it. His characters’ Karl Marx knuckle tattoos are a marvel (pun intended) to behold.
Oscar Isaac Is Not Meechee
Elvira Lind singlehandedly feeds her husband’s rabid fanbase. And for that, I am grateful. First, she posted this picture on Instagram:
The quote tweets and replies to the above tweet alone are a sight to behold. Let alone this guy right here. Wow. Wow.
Then, the promotional character posters for Denis Villenueve’s upcoming Dune remake dropped without warning, spawning a million Zendaya is Meechee jokes (which I love). Here is Duke Atreides’ poster:
“can see hannah baker smiling at me rn.” is still one of the funniest things I’ve ever read in my life. And it’s true. That’s how that poster made me feel. I have many redacted thoughts in this mind of mine. I also have many, many incoherent ones. That’s just the effect he has on people. I don’t even know how to process this or respond. I will be watching Dune when it comes out in October, I also apologise in advanced for the person I will become when Dune does drop. It’s going to get unbearable.
Some Personal News-ish
I’m competing in Heat 7 for the Funny Women Stage Award on Sunday July 25th at 11am GMT / 5pm WIB! I haven’t done stand-up in months but I’m excited to get back on the horse! This is my first Funny Women comp! Aaaa! You can find out more about the event here and you can come and see the show on Twitch right here!
Funny Women @funnywomenWe've been astounded by the amount & diversity of talent of #FWAwards2021 submissions. Each entry for the Stage Award sponsored by @SkyStudios has been viewed & marked. Thank you for being patient w us. Please check your spam & junk folders if u haven’t got an email from us yet. https://t.co/4iWuztgRi8
That’s all for now! See you next week!