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  1. “Embrace Humanity” – CommuniCon Returns

    November 1, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim

    There are times when it is really hard being a Community fan.  We’re constantly fighting NBC to get on the schedule…and once we get on the schedule, we’re fighting to get them to PROMOTE the show (ahahahaha) and to get people to WATCH it (ahahahaha).  We’ve lost two of the Greendale Seven this year (and no matter HOW WELL they do it, I’m never going to get over losing Troy Barnes).  And most frustrating of all, the fandom has been subjected to tons of behind the scenes drama, thanks to the immediacy of social media and entertainment websites trying to out-scoop each other for page views.

    Use Twitter for GOOD, people.  That’s all I have to say about that.

    And then there are times when it is absolutely GLORIOUS being a Community fan.  The weekend of October 19, 2013 was one of those times.  A mere 8 months (give or take a few days) after its initial incarnation, CommuniCon made its return, and like its predecessor, proved to be a weekend filled with laughter, love, and all things Community.

    When my friend Gillian (the Queen of CommuniCon) emailed those of us that helped plan the original con over the summer saying that we were going to have a second con in the fall, I thought she was insane.  I also thought there was NO WAY I could go.  I had cashed in all my frequent flier miles for the first CommuniCon and don’t exactly have a disposable income.  So I resigned myself to the fact that while I would still help plan the con, I wouldn’t be able to go.  I responded to every one of Gillian’s emails with various versions of *sobs* *dies* *weeping and gnashing of teeth* and *throws self into traffic*.  And then the peer pressure began as more and more of my friends began booking their tickets to LA.  I still cried poverty.  Everyone that really knew me began saying “Kim, you’ll kill yourself if you DON’T go.”  I knew they were right.  I set a price alert on Kayak.com and promised myself if a good flight came up, I would book it.  And I did.  After all…that’s what credit cards are for, right?

    I was going back to Greendale.  And I couldn’t be happier about it.

    flashmob2

    Early Arriving Communies held a Flashmob at NBC Universal

    And thus a mere 5 days after the end of New York Comic Con (for future reference, I TOTALLY recommend doing conventions two weekends in a row.  Exhausting and exhilarating.), I boarded a plane to Los Angeles.  While I didn’t arrive until Friday, Communies started trickling into the area as early as Tuesday.  While I was en route to LA (I was literally boarding my connection in Salt Lake City), the news came through.  Season Five of Community had an airdate.  Sure, it was back the 8 PM Thursday Death Slot (copyright pending) and sure it was premiering in the midst of College Bowl season, but at that moment, none of those things mattered.  WE HAD AN AIRDATE.  It was a good omen for the weekend.

    My flight didn’t arrive in time to join the flashmob at NBC Universal but it DID arrive in time for the free Happy Hour at our hotel.

    You read that correctly.

    This time around CommuniCon was held at the Embassy Suites in Glendale and let me tell you…if you are ever seeking a venue to hold a convention in, an Embassy Suites is the way to go.  The rooms are quite spacious and can comfortably fit five people.  They offer a FREE full breakfast that features everything from made to order omelettes to pancakes to all the bacon and scrambled eggs you have.  But best of all…they have an evening cocktail reception with snacks and complimentary cocktails.  I am sure it was not INTENDED to be a situation where people sit there for the entire two hours and get TIPSY…but that’s what we did.

    And then tipsily walked to the nearest In and Out Burger.  As you do.

    The Evening Reception

    The other wonderful thing about having the convention at a hotel was the fact that the majority of the attendees stayed there too, which meant lots of time for socializing, which is really the best part of CommuniCon.  After countless hours tweeting with each other, it was a real treat to get to hang out with each other in person.  I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again…I have yet to meet a Community fan who isn’t JUST as delightful in person as they are on Twitter.  We all piled into one hotel room on that Friday night for a raucous game of Cards Against Humanity that lead to a security guard (Officer Cackowski, is that you?) knocking on our door at midnight telling us we needed to keep it down.  Whoops.

    TQs

    CommuniCon staff ready to go!

    The Con kicked off on Saturday with a writers panel where former Community writer Hilary Winston joined veteran writers (and past CommuniCon attendees) Andy Bobrow and Tim Saccardo and new season 5 writers Carol Kolb and Matt Roller.  In the green room before the panel, I took GREAT pleasure in showing off my “pathological” Jeff/Annie button to Andy Bobrow, who caused QUITE the Twitter kerfuffle earlier in the year when he lashed out against some VERY insistant Jeff and Annie shippers.  “Oh man,” he laughed.  “I’m really going to pay for that this weekend, aren’t I?”

    “Any teasing I do, Andy, I do in love,”  I replied.  I’ve got to  give Andy (AND all the Jeff/Annie shippers who sported the buttons) credit…he took the (gentle) teasing very well and all the fans just let their buttons speak for themselves.   As Jenn just said in a wonderful post about Jeff and Annie, we took the term “pathological” back and made it into an inside joke.

    Andy was sporting his own Pathological button by the end of the panel.

    pathological

    Proud to be Pathological

    What I loved about the panel with the writers was the fact that while they DID talk about the work they are doing on season five, I still feel like I have no idea what is going to happen in the upcoming season.  And as a spoiler-phobe, I like it that way.  I feel like we knew WAY too much going into Season Four, and I think that was due to everyone’s desperation to get the fans to watch a post-Harmon Community and to reassure us that it was still going to be the weird and lovable show it was before.  And now with Dan back…I think they feel like there is no need to bait the fans.  They’ll be there.  Besides, leave the spoiling to NBC.  If they decide to promote Community that is.

    The writers praised the work that Breaking Bad‘s Jonathan Banks is doing on the show, but other than saying he was AWESOME (and terrifying) they were tight-lipped about what exactly he was DOING.  Instead of spoilers, we were treated to great stories about goings-on in the writers room, especially in the notorious marathon sessions where writers would be huddled up in a room breaking stories for hours on end.  They also deftly and gracefully avoided (or briefly touched on) questions regarding Dan’s infamous remarks on Season Four and the recent feud (was it a feud? We’ll just call it snarky tweets) between Dan and former writer Megan Ganz (I started rocking back and forth in my seat when someone brought that up in the Q&A).  They were gracious and most of all they were hilarious.  It was really lovely to see the fresh energy that Carol and Matt brought to the panel as new writers and you could tell that they were just loving their jobs.  I’m excited to see what they bring to the table this season.

    Also, Tim Saccardo has the world’s most expressive face and I wish I could just make reaction gifs of him.

    Hilary Winston, Andy Bobrow, Tim Saccardo, Carol Kolb, Matt Roller

    Hilary Winston, Andy Bobrow, Tim Saccardo, Carol Kolb, Matt Roller

    Immediately following the panel was the return of Fans vs. Writers Community trivia.  The fans still won, of course, but it was a much closer contest that at CommuniCon 1.  Clearly, the writers studied up this time.  Or maybe the questions were harder to preserve the writers’ egos and to keep the fans from steamrolling them.

    Maybe it was a bit of both.

    Sadly, there were no shirtless Jeff Winger questions this time.

    The Return of #TeamWives

    The Return of #TeamWives

    After a delicious lunch (seriously…I would consider moving to LA based on the fact that they bring out ranch dressing with french fries WITHOUT YOU HAVING TO ASK FOR IT) across the street, we kicked off the afternoon with the crew member panel, which was a new addition for CommuniCon 2.  Moderated by precious blueberry Andy Bobrow, the panel featured members from Costuming, Casting, Set Design and Construction, and Make-up.  Andy did a terrific job moderating, joking “This is educational for me too, considering I don’t know what half of you do.”

    The crew panel was a fascinating peek behind the scenes as we learned about everything from who takes the longest in make-up (Alison Brie, because they make her look younger.  Also Joel, because he is vain.) to specific wardrobe choices (they have specifically been modifying Annie’s wardrobe through the seasons as she has gotten more mature.  My tweet after they said that? THE WARDROBE DEPARTMENT KNOWS ANNIE IS NEARLY 23 WHY DON’T THE WRITERS? {sorry not sorry}) and the initial panic over the construction of the pillow fort.  One of the set guys was also a big Whovian and talked about attending Gallifrey One, which lead to me excitedly running up to him during the break to talk about all things Gally and what to expect from my first time there.  What amazed me the most about the crew panel was their attention to detail when bringing the world of Greendale to life.  They are so dedicated to their work and it was lovely to celebrate them.

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  2. “…but it’s REALLY good!” – Head Over Feels at the Sleepy Hollow Press Session

    October 16, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    Other than get us into the Javits through a special entrance with no lines, our fancy press passes ALSO meant we got invited to special press sessions.  A week or so before the Con, we got the crown jewel of emails…an invite to the press session for our new favorite show, Sleepy Hollow.  Naturally, we RSVP’d immediately, hoping that we would score a spot.  Days went by with no word as to whether or not we had gotten in.  We resigned ourselves to the fact that unless Tom Mison decided to wander the show floor, we would miss him, as the Sleepy Hollow panel was at the same time as the Doctor Who Big Finish panel (which preceded the X-Files panel, which as you all know was our main goal of the whole Con).  And then Saturday night, magic happened.  I was getting a post-Con drink with Sage when I checked my email.  I promptly started screaming and hitting Sage when I discovered a message from the Fox PR rep.

    We. Were. In.

    Basically

    As Sage said in her post about Day 4, The Comic Con scheduling Gods smiled down upon us on Sunday.  The press session fit perfectly in the window of time between the Gareth-David Lloyd panel and the Big Finish panel.  After charging up our phones in the press lounge (seriously…what WOULD we have done without that lounge?), we checked in at the press table and were promptly escorted back to the interview room (how much more LEGIT can we get, y’all?).  We snagged seats at our assigned table (super close to where the talent would sit, naturally) and started chatting with our fellow journalists.  After much flailing with one of the girls sitting next to us, I grabbed a business card and said “You’d probably like our blog!”.  She took it and looked at it and THEN SAID “Oh!  I’ve actually read this blog before!”

    You know that moment in When Harry Met Sally where Marie quoted an article that Jess wrote BACK to him?  Well now Sage and I know exactly how he felt in that moment.

    The format for the press session was a photo and video interview session first, followed by Roundtables with the talent.  Feeling oh so professional, we lined up with everyone else as the talent started filing in…

    Katia Winter (Katrina Crane)

    Katia Winter (Katrina Crane)

    Good God.

    Good God.

    Guys.  The photos don’t EVEN do Tom Mison justice.  He’s absolutely beautiful and charming and has NO idea that he is on the verge of being super famous.  As he was posing for pics, Sage and I noticed his very chic two toned green and brown boots.  Since we have zero filter, we said that we liked them and he heard us.  “Oh, thanks,” Tom said.  “My dad said they were rather snazzy!”  “AND they match your scarf,” I said.  “So the whole outfit is working.”  He grinned at us and then kept posing as we desperately tried not to faint from his dreaminess.

    Nicole Beharie (Abbie Mills) looking FIERCE.

    Nicole Beharie (Abbie Mills) looking FIERCE.

    Orlando Jones (Frank Irving)

    Orlando Jones (Frank Irving)

    Nicole Beharie and Orlando Jones arrived shortly after Tom and Katia for their photos.  We complimented both of their outfits as well, even getting an “Oh, STOP!” from Orlando when we told him how dapper he looked.  What can we say?  We love fashion here at Head Over Feels, and we always feel it is important for someone, be it a celebrity or a regular joe, to know that we think they look good.  Pay the compliments forward, people.

    Once the photos and video interviews were done, we settled in at our tables for roundtable interviews with the talent.  Luckily, we got Tom (who was oh so Britishly cradling a cup of tea) and Katia first.  Sage and I also learned our lesson about being bold with questions after our experience at the “Asylum of the Daleks” Doctor Who roundtable last year, so we weren’t afraid to speak up.  Tom proved to be just as wry as Ichabod, frequently interlacing his interplay with the table with quips like “These WILD assumptions” when asked about the Ichabod/Abbie ship or telling one journalist she had a “silver tounge” when she talked about the differences between Irving’s portrayal of Ichabod versus his own.  He also adorably pointed his fingers at Katia behind her back when he was asked about what characters may not be all that they seem.  Like I said before, he’s completely charming and is now seriously threatening to break into my Top 5.

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  3. “The F-Word.” – Head Over Feels Takes New York Comic Con, Day 4

    October 14, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Frodo It's gone

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    If our first experience at New York Comic Con HAD to come to an end (but WHY, though?), at least we went out with a mile-high mic drop. Sunday was our most productive day; from the second we stepped into the Javits Center, we were making moves, sucking every last second of nerdy joy out of our final hours. I swear that something wibbly wobbly occurred, because time flew by. Before Kim and I could get a grip on what was happening, we were spit back out onto 11th Avenue with the rest of the crowd, a little dazed and a lot elated. Hey, at least we got to meet Tom Mison.

    The Daily Show Mission Accomplished

    A Mison Mission, if you will.

    • Having learned our lesson from our failure to get into the Who panel on Saturday, we booked it over to the Gareth David-Lloyd Q&A the minute the doors opened. (Line free. Thank you, press passes.) Of course you know Gareth as the enigmatic tea boy turned bad-ass operative (and Jack Harkness sex toy, but really, who isn’t?)  Ianto Jones on Torchwood. I demanded we show up for his panel as our penance for missing The John Barrowman Bottomless Variety Hour at Stage 1-E the night before. And Kim, though I told her she was guaranteed to learn Ianto’s fate before the first question was even asked, was still game to accompany me. Only fair really, since the The Walking Dead panel spoiled me like it was My Super Sweet Sixteen. (“Not THAT car, Mom. I wanted it in BLUE. *cries* You’re such a BITCH.”)

     

    Gareth David Lloyd Q&A

    Where’s my pizza, Ianto? GOD.

     

    • Gareth was solo onstage and moderated the panel himself, so cheers. We were warned by some Con veterans that some of the audience would be writers trying to work out plot points in their fic. But that couldn’t be true, right? Until about five different versions of the question, “So…say Ianto came back. HOW would that happen? Exactly. In as much detail as you can give us,” were asked, we didn’t believe it. Write your own stories, girls. Gareth isn’t going to do it for you. But he DID express his desire to play an evil, alt-universe Ianto, so get to work on that one, Woodies.
    • Predictably, we spent a big chunk of the session discussing the whereabouts of John Barrowman’s member at any given time. Like in this exchange:
      Audience member: “Were there any props that you stole or wanted to steal?”
      Gareth: “There are lots of props I’ve wanted to steal, but you never know which ones John Barrowman has touched with his penis.”

     

    IMG_1249

    • Gareth also had to dispel some rumor about an untoward incident in the filming of the shed scene that John was apparently spreading in HIS panel. “He twists things around,” Gareth said. “He accidentally touched MY knob.” I don’t know WHO to believe, but at least somebody was touching SOMEONE’S and that’s all that matters.
    • We talked about Gareth’s band Blue Gillespie (Ianto has a metal band – who knew?), who are on hiatus for the forseeable future; his Hogwarts house: Slytherin, clearly; what Ianto would be like as a companion (“Brilliant!”); and how the absence of the Welsh backdrop affected the vibe of the Miracle Day series. He further won us over with his responses to questions about his character’s sexuality (“I don’t see how it’s different from playing anyone else.”) and by remembering the name of the THRILLED little boy who was obviously Gareth’s biggest fan. Thanks to Mr. David-Lloyd for an informative, funny panel and, most of all, for that threadbare t-shirt.

     

    Jack Harkness can't tell you what

     

    • After holding the door for Gareth, his wife, and baby daughter (Kim: “We are nothing if not polite), we scurried up to the Press Lounge to check in for the #SassyHollow press roundtable. Check out Kim’s post for all the details on our interviews with the stars and creators of our new favorite genre series!

     

    More for us.

     

    • We ended up not needing the Reserved Seating passes we scored for the Big Finish/Doctor Who panel in the main stage. The queue hall was strangely empty, with the brain-eating fervor of Saturday’s Walking Dead fanatics but a memory. If the session had been about the 50th or the television series in general, it would have been a different story. Still, 1-D was packed with fez-wearing, sonic-carrying Whovians. We wondered if the tween Claras and teen Elevens we saw would be disappointed by an hour-long discussion on radio dramas starring the Doctors from the classic era. And, though they were there to pimp the new audio story The Light at the End, the first question asked of panelists Nicholas Briggs (voice of the Daleks, Cybermen, Judoon, and more); Big Finish producer Jason Haigh-Ellery; and Sixth Doctor Colin Baker was, “Can you tell us anything about what happens in the 50th?” *sigh*

     

    IMG_1399

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  4. “It’s Called The X-Files” – Head Over Feels Takes New York Comic Con Day 3

    October 13, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Never gonna be over it.

    Never gonna be over it.

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    Our feet are swollen and aching from standing.  We greet the volunteers at the Javits Center now as if they were old friends.  We’re living on a diet of granola bars, chocolate covered pretzels, probiotic trail mix, hot dogs, GIANT soft pretzels, Gatorade, and water.  We measure time not in minutes but in percentage of phone battery left.  We’re exhausted from flailing about all day.  And hot damn if we’re not having the greatest weekend of our lives.

    Welcome to New York Comic Con, Day Three.  We would stay here forever if we could…

    –Kim

    * Our third day at the Javits Center started out with a bit of a disappointment: we were denied entrance to the “50 Years of Doctor Who” panel, which was one of the first panels of the morning.  We had thought since there was nobody super famous on the panel (no disrespect to the panelists, as they are all well-known Whovian academics who have written fantastic books on the show that everyone needs to read) we would be able to get in the room a mere 40 minutes before the panel.  WRONG.  We stupidly underestimated the Whovian fandom (who are we? BBC America using movietickets.com for the “Asylum of the Daleks” premiere?) and their passion for hearing anyone talk about their favorite show.  Let it be known that our press passes can only do so much.  And one thing they CAN’T do is allow us to jump the line.

    Not Allowed at NYCC

    * While we were sad about the Who panel, we refused to let it bring us down.  We’re at COMIC CON for God’s sake…and for every opportunity missed, a golden one lies right around the next corner.  We went up to the Press Lounge to regroup and recharge our phones and plan the rest of the day.  It was then that we realized that the ever delightful Zachary Levi was at Nerd HQ taking pictures for Operation Smile, so off we went back to the floor. Props to the staff and volunteers at The Nerd Machine booth, who managed to snake a line with multiple sections quickly and fairly through the Con main floor. (Because that could have gotten reaaal ugly, REAL fast.) And to Zach, who showed up on a grueling two-show day to shake hands and look pretty with his adoring fans. He’s taking part in a fundraiser that Sage is planning in November, so they had a lovely chat about looking forward to it. And now it’ll be that much easier for her to be cool in his presence when she sees him again. Or not, we’ll see.

    Sage with Zach Levi

    Said over and over again each time we looked at this picture: “He’s just so TALL.” *dreamy sigh*

    * We learned from the handsome and effortlessly sassy Clark Gregg (who was tragically in LA, much to our despair) on Twitter that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.s Fitz-Simmons were appearing over at the Marvel headquarters. Sage headed over to check out the precious Brits (who – confirmed on the panel – are NOT supposed to be brother and sister, so ship away, my friends) and ended up connecting with Marvel Television PR to get a solid in to the panel later that day. Head Over Feels: forever hustling.

    * While Sage was starting a Nerd Revolution with Zach, I made my way back to where the Who panel was to meet up with the panelists once it was done.  On my way there, I spotted Grace from Rotten Tomatoes, who had been one of the moderators of the panel we had attended the night before.  She was once again in her bad ass Cylon costume, so I had to stop and compliment her not only on her hotness but on what a great job she did the night before.  We had a great chat about movies and writing and fandom in general.  AND I won a free Starbucks gift card from a survey, so my coffee tomorrow morning is already paid for!

    Certified Fresh

    Certified Fresh

    * After I met up with the Who panelists, we made our way back to the floor and the Doctor Who shop booth where they were all signing their books (again…you should buy them).  Sage met up with me back there and we witness a completely spontaneous Whovian cosplay photoshoot that was nothing short of epic.  It all started with a couple of VERY accurate Nines and a Rose and grew from there.  Anytime a Whovian Cosplayer passed by they would jump into the picture.  Even Captain Jack Harkness showed up eventually.

    Fantastic!

    And then there was THIS little guy representing both Doctor Who and Harry Potter.  I snapped this after getting permission from his parents and he delightedly posed for me.

    IMG_2359

    (more…)


  5. “Your standards are too low.” – Head Over Feels Takes New York Comic Con: Days 1 and 2

    October 12, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    John Green nerd life

    Posted by Kim and Sage

    Happy New York Comic Con, and GOD BLESS US, EVERYONE.

    It’s been an action and spandex-packed two days so far, as Kim and I are covering our very first Con as accredited members of the press. (That’s right, someone gave US a piece of plastic that INCREASES our access to celebrities. Good idea? GREAT IDEA.) From cosplay parties to rowdy panels to run-ins with seriously major Doctor Who villains, we give you the highlights so far.

    - Sage

    • We hit the floor after work on Thursday, and spent an hour or so just getting the lay of the land. The Javits Center is MASSIVE, and it’s easy to get lost. (“Haven’t I passed that same sexy Joker three times already?”) We scoped the Press Lounge (swag), eyed up some prints we had to get our hands on in Artists Alley, and met a really special lady over at the Marvel booth.
    "Don't touch her."

    “Don’t touch her.”

    • From there, it was over to Hudson Terrace for the New York Comic Con Cosplay Bash, hosted by Hello Hero, a brand new mobile RPG. We were all set with our Tenth and Eleventh Doctors costumes from last year, and props to us for each wearing some form of our cosplay all day at work without looking like fools. Kim’s sister Kaysie and our friend John were down to come along, and so threw together Ninth Doctor and Captain Jack outfits in record time. (Lucky that John owns a lot of Doctor-esque jackets, surely not by coincidence.) Basically, we rolled up into this party as Modern Who. The result being that every time we posed for our own pictures, a media photographer would say, “Do that again,” and suddenly we were getting snapped by everyone in the vicinity. We have no idea where all of this is going to end up, except don’t be surprised to see us in Complex Magazine. WHAT.
    It also helps to be three hot girls in miniskirts and skinny pants.

    It also helps to be three hot girls in miniskirts and skinny pants.

    IMG_1111

    • We rubbed elbows with the likes of Sharknado director Anthony Ferrante, who directed the game’s trailer. But there was something about the dress up aspect of the party (and the three hour, top shelf open bar, really) that had strangers talking like friends. Kim and I met and talked fandom with so many awesome people, including fellow bloggers who had some insightful advice for our year-old baby.  Also, we were later approached by two people who literally introduced themselves by saying “We’ve been waiting to talk to you guys because we saw that you were loud and fun and we want to be friends with you.”  And thus, we spent the rest of the party with them and they were awesome.
    • Two breakfast sandwiches and large iced coffees later, we met up the next morning for our first full day at Javits. While the crowd poured into panel lines, we went back to Artists Alley to get some of the incredible fan art we’ve had our eyes on. The first stop was the Sara Richard booth to pick up some of her breathtaking Doctor Who illustrations. Can you stand this “Idiot’s Lantern” print?

    Rose and Ten Sara Richard

    • Mark Dos Santos‘s booth caught our eye with his Norman-Rockwell-meets-comics style. Kim pimped Communicon to him, while I got my new Tony Stark print signed. And before we left the relative calm of the Alley to get back onto the madness of the floor, we had to meet one of our personal favorite fan artists, Karen Hallion.  Her booth was crazy packed (We met an awesome Clara and Martha there.) with fans buying her Disney Who art notecards, stickers and prints. While Karen signed our new purchases, she gave us a few scoops: Firstly, the Tenth Doctor and Hermione fireplace design IS coming. She knows how desperate we all are for it, so she wants it to be absolutely perfect. It WILL be suitable for a four-color print t-shirt! And secondly, she’s kicking around the idea of Ten dancing with a woman in a Con-inspired TARDIS ball gown on a beach. (Well, THE beach. You know the one.) Kim suggested she name it “You Stole Me and I Stole You,” so we expect royalties if you go with that, Karen! We kid, we kid.
    Completely introduced myself to Karen by saying "I'm obsessed with you." -K

    Completely introduced myself to Karen by saying “I’m obsessed with you.” -K

    Loaded up with purchases, we hit the main floor. Photo essay time!

    Continue Reading


  6. That Time Matt Smith Directed A Soliloquy About Life, Adventure, And The Universe Right At Us

    August 27, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Notting Hill Be Cool

    Posted by Sage

    As if our obsession with each other wasn’t already groan-inducing enough, I’ll tell you that my blog wife and I have a yearly celebration of the start of our friendship. Friendaversaries are the shit. I highly recommend celebrating them with all of your people.

    Last year, the event happened to coincide with the US premiere of the 7th season opener of Doctor Who: “Asylum of the Daleks,” and our first journalistic endeavor. Kim and I were lucky enough to attend not only the premiere screening at the historic Ziegfeld theater, but also the pre-screening press roundtable at the BBCAmerica offices to talk with Karen Gillan, producer Caroline Skinner, and, the man himself – Matty Smith.

    BBC America Matt Caroline Karen

    Zoommmgggg….

    Rory So Cool
    Samuel L Jackson Be Cool

    Somehow we gathered our wits enough to conduct ourselves professionally (on the outside, at least), and I even managed to ask Matt Smith a question. From there, he launched into a complete and heartfelt answer that exemplified his deep understanding of his character AND singularly ruined us for good. Head to the bottom of the post for the full audio.

     

    Me: “It seems like the stories of this season are just so huge, but one of the reasons that the fans are so passionate about the show and in fact THE reason that the fans are so passionate about the show is because it’s about relationships and character. (Matt: “Mm.”) So how do you hold on to those little moments when something like that (*Note: There was a poster of the “Asylum” promo still in the room.) is happening behind you?”

    *Midi music goes off*

    OMG MATT SMITH, OMG: “That’s actually my alarm! Sorry. My apologies. Um, well. I think, I think that’s a good question, because fundamentally it has to be about – I think people tune in to see the relationship between the Doctor and the companion. Ultimately. Every week. I think Steven invests in that. And around it, what’s so wonderful about the show and the form of the show is that you can explore any world, without restraints. There are no limits to where you can take this character. Um, but you know, I think what’s sort of – and it’s very interesting this season, you know, because Amy’s sort of worried about the Doctor being alone, and, and, um, I think, you know, I think he needs a human companion by his side. I think that, I think allowing – I think seeing the universe alone is different to showing the universe and letting someone else experience it. And I think, at its heart, that’s sort of what the show is. He’s giving people this gift of all of time and space. And that’s what’s wonderful about playing him. Cause, what a thing to say to someone! ‘Do you wanna come with me?’ (*Note: KIM AND I AUDIBLY SWOON. You can actually hear it on the recording.) And she’s like, ‘What’ll I see?’ ‘Everything. You can ever imagine. Everything. Possible. Ever.’ And, you know, as an idea, I think that fuels the sort of heart of the show, really.”

    Bob's Burgers Dying
    John Watson Consumed by Lust
    Psyched What Is The Point

    Thank you for indulging me in this reminiscence. May this memory live in our hearts forever and ever, amen.

    IMG_4238

    (It should be noted that “What a thing to say to someone! Do you want to come with me?” is now my text message alert. #sorrynotsorry –Kim)


  7. “Sooooo Meaty.” – Head Over Feels Visits The Soup

    July 1, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    A Joel McHale Sandwich

    A Joel McHale Sandwich

    Posted by Kim

    It’s no secret that here at Head Over Feels our love for Joel McHale knows no bounds.  So once we learned that Joel was in New York for the summer and would be taping The Soup here, we knew that we had to go.  The lovely Jaime secured tickets for me, Sage and Michelle (the last time the 4 of us encountered Joel we gave him a trophy that he STILL HAS. No big deal.) and we all arranged to take half days (or in my case a full day) off of work and meet up at Chelsea Studios (where Rachel Ray and Wendy Williams film their shows!).

    Observations from the taping…

    – This is why you ALWAYS get to things early: We were told by the audience coordinator to be at the studio by 12:30, so naturally we decided to meet around noon to ensure that we would be first in line.  Jaime and Michelle got to the studio a little bit before noon and got to see the man himself arriving for the taping…AND he recognized their faces.  YEP.  I, on the other hand, made the world’s WORST decision and stopped for an iced coffee on my way to the studio.  Though I am telling myself I never would have made it there on time in the first place, and had I NOT stopped for the iced coffee, I would have missed Joel by mere seconds, not by several minutes.  Yep.  That’s what I am going with.

    – It’s a very casual atmosphere at The Soup but we all opted to wear pretty summer outfits anyway.  Cause let’s be honest, we were dressing for our pictures with Joel afterwards…

    We like to be the prettiest ones in the audience.

    We like to be the prettiest ones in the audience.

    – Naturally, we were the first ones into the holding room and we WOULD have been in the front row of the taping, had the first two rows not been reserved for a whole lot of Advertising Executives.  We had to settle for the third row.  Wah wah.

    – Mankini is pretty hot in person, y’all.

    – While we were waiting for the taping to start various producers chatted with the audience and they played an audio montage of Soup favorite Greg Kelly.  When they said they were going to do so, I promptly shouted “Science!!”, which elicited quite a laugh from the producers.  I have a problem keeping my mouth shut in these situations, as the very next night at the screening of The Way Way Back I reacted so audibly when the moderator said they would be screening The Sandlot that weekend that he said “Well I guess we’ll see YOU there.” #sorrynotsorry

    – There was a girl whose ONLY JOB was artfully mussing Joel’s hair and straightening his tie (which was distressingly unskinny).  Needless to say we all hated her.  And at one point he called her a “sexy lab tech” which made our hatred/insane jealousy even stronger.

    – Also Joel looked all dapper from the waist up in his suit jacket, button down and tie which made the fact that he was wearing neon yellow sneakers and jeans all the more amusing.

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  8. “Enjoy therapy.” – A Screening and Q&A with the Cast and Filmmakers of The Way Way Back

    June 30, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    The Way Way Back Promo Still

    Posted by Sage

    The fine people at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens were kind enough to schedule this advanced screening of Fox Searchlight’s The Way Way Back on the day before the official start of Communies Take Manhattan, a meetup planned by an east coast group of TV-loving Twitter friends. Why would Community fans be particularly interested in seeing this coming-of-age comedy together, aside from their impeccable taste? Let’s just say this movie is where their favorite show meets the silver-DEAN.

    Communie Selfie

    Communies go to the movies!

    The screening was followed by a talkback with cast members Liam James (Duncan) and Sam Rockwell (Owen), plus writer/directors Nat Faxon and Jim Rash. That’s right, my friends. This poignant and witty ensemble dramedy is the brainchild of Ben Fox and Dean Pelton.

    Nat Faxon and Jim Rash at MoMI

    Nat and Jim answer audience questions.

    Okay fine, so they’re also ACADEMY AWARD WINNING screenwriters. Nat and Jim took home the Adapted Screenplay Oscar for their work on The Descendants, which gave them the Hollywood muscle to take the lead on their next project. At the talkback, they told us that they also carry around the “travel size” versions of their awards, just in case they ever need to prove something. Nice strategy, but The Way Way Back is proof enough for me that they are and will continue to be the real deal.

    The Way Way Back chronicles a summer that 14-year-old Duncan spends with his mom Pam (Toni Collette), her boyfriend Trent (Steve Carell), and Trent’s surly daughter Steph (Zoe Levin) at Trent’s east coast vacation house. While his mom tries to keep up (“It’s like spring break for adults.”) with Trent’s summer friends Betty (Alison Janney), Kip (Rob Corddry), and Joan (Amanda Peet), Duncan escapes the house to be befriended by Owen, the boyish and capricious manager of the local waterpark. Duncan wear his loneliness like a Water Wizz employee t-shirt, so Owen offers him a job at the park. He blooms under the interest of his new friends and Duncan’s mysterious new confidence draws the attention of Betty’s restless daughter Susanna (AnnaSophia Robb), if not that of his distracted mother.

    Frankly, you could put this cast in a reenactment of an episode of Whodunnit? and it would probably be gold. Toni Collette plays Pam as a confused woman doing her best to navigate a huge transition in the life of her and her kid. I can’t ever remember seeing Steve Carell play such a boundlessly unlikeable character, and he did it so well that I’m still a little mad at him. Jim Rash described Trent in the talkback as “passive aggressive” and that’s an understatement. He approaches his life with teeth bared, looking to take someone down before they can get to him first.  (Shallow Editor’s Note: Carell also clearly bulked up for this role and the ladies in our group were…well, reacting. Kim even appointed him to her Top 5.)

    Steve Carell the Way Way Back

    Me-ow.

    Alison Janney is – as always – completely delightful as lovable lush Betty. And no one could have played a more complete or engaging Owen than Sam Rockwell, an actor who doesn’t so much disappear into his roles as he overlays his own distinct qualities onto them. The film basically rests on the performance of Liam James, since the audience shares the perspective of Duncan. (If I remember correctly, there is no scene in the film that occurs outside of Duncan’s sight or hearing.) Liam nails both Duncan’s reserve with his family and goofy chutzpah as Water Wizz’s Employee of the Month. Rob Corddry’s Kip is a willfully ignorant good-time guy who pretends not to notice how Peet’s prickly and jealous Joan fixates on Trent’s new relationship. I’m always pleased to see Maya Rudolph, whose character Caitlyn is tired of playing mother to Owen and urges him to grow up – just a little. Faxon and Rash cast themselves as other members of the Water Wizz team – fratty Roddy and sad-sack Lewis, respectively.

    MoMI screened this film as a part of their Coming of Age Comedies: The Summer Edition screening series, which also includes classics Meatballs, The Goonies, and The Sandlot. Those movies and others like them are so ingrained in my soul, that I at first didn’t consciously recognize what an influence they had on this film. An audience member pointed out the scarcity of tech in this film, though it’s set in the present, which heightens the alienation that Duncan, Pam, and Susanna feel and the urgency of friendships they make. Nat and Jim talked about the timelessness of those summer places – the friends you only see once a year; the houses that are never redecorated. That retreat from the real world sets the scene for bad behavior or uncharacteristic heroics. The Way Way Back follows in that grand tradition of magical summers, the tropes of which are familiar to me as breathing. But this movie isn’t at all formulaic. It flips those tropes on their head, especially as they pertained to the grown-up/kid power dynamic.

    The Way Way Back water gun

    **MILD SPOILERS AHOY**

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  9. “Sunlight is like Gold” – Arthur Darvill in Once

    April 25, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Arthur

    Posted by Kim

    Way back when we first launched Head Over Feels, Sage and I wrote a post that encompassed our life philosophy of “Screw It We’re Doing This”.  That philosophy has (just within the past year) gotten us into the press junket for the “Asylum of the Daleks” premiere (Matt Smith saying “What a thing to say to someone! Do you want to come with me?” to us will NEVER be replaced as my text alert) and it has gotten us pictures with Joel McHale, James Corden, Dan Stevens, Fred Armisen and Stefon.  It’s that philosophy that brings all sorts of hate/love raining down upon us from our Twitter friends whenever we tweet about our adventures.  The other (unspoken) part of our philosophy is “good things come to those who wait”.  You’ve got to be willing to get up at ungodly hours and sit in line to have the adventures we do (especially if you are not rich).  It’s only fitting that we had to apply this life philosophy to meet Rory the Roman.  Sitting in a rush line for 4 and a half hours is comparable to 2000 years waiting outside of a box, right?

    Right.

    The moment we found out that Arthur Darvill would be taking over the role of “Guy” in Once on Broadway, Sage and I planned to be at his first performance, where we would of course meet him after the show at the stage door.  However, we were thwarted in that, as they (oh so sneakily) put Arthur and his new “Girl” Joanna Christie over the weekend instead of the announced date of Tuesday April 23.  It took all of our will power to avoid the bootlegs that started popping up on Tumblr over the weekend.  Sage and I would both randomly start shouting “ARTHUR!!”  We both took Tuesday off of work and planned to get in the rush line first thing in the morning.  Why the rush line?  The answer is simple: $35 tickets, as opposed to at least $70 at TKTS or $140 full price orchestra seats.

    It should be noted it was APRIL 23. And we were FREEZING.

    It should be noted it was APRIL 23. And we were FREEZING.

    As we know better than to underestimate the Whovian fandom, I set my alarm for 5:30 AM (aka Stupid O’Clock) on Tuesday morning.  The tickets, I should state, go on sale at 10 AM.  But as Once is the current Best Musical winner, its rush line has been notoriously long.  Factor in Doctor Who fans and you have potential for a shit storm.  Another part of my life philosophy is that I would rather get somewhere early and wait longer but be GUARANTEED I would have tickets and my wait wasn’t for nothing.  So 5:30 AM it was.  After stopping at a deli for coffee and a bagel, I was in front of the Jacobs theatre at 5:50 AM.  I was fourth in line.  The girls ahead of me were clearly Whovians, down to one of them having a TARDIS bag, so I settled in and started chatting with them.  That’s the other thing with rush lines.  There is always a sense of camaraderie because you KNOW that the person sitting next to you is just as insane as you are…so why not make friends with them?  What else are you going to do for the 4 hours you are in line?  Besides, you’ll probably be sitting next to them at the show that night anyway!  Sage showed up a little bit before 7, bringing a second round of coffee for me and Mad Libs for entertainment.  And so we sat on the sidewalk.  For four hours.  In the unseasonably cold April weather, freezing our asses off.

    I can’t believe I used to do that ALL THE TIME when I first moved to New York City.  Because that last hour or so, due to the cold, was torture.  It was worth it though.  Cause we got our tickets.

    They had yet to change the cast board in front of the theatre.

    They had yet to change the cast board in front of the theatre.

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  10. “Sometimes you have to be a little bit naughty.” – Opening Night of Matilda on Broadway

    April 14, 2013 by HeadOverFeels

    Matilda Broadway promo still

    - Posted by Sage

    Kim and I get by with a little help from our friends. And we have of few of them to thank (you know who you are) for getting us in the doors of the opening night of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s new Broadway musical, Matilda. On the way in, I suggested to Kimmie that we repay them with a drink or two. By the end of Act 1, I was prepared to purchase them the Napa winery of their choice.

    The deal: Matilda is the musical adaptation of Roald Dahl’s classic children’s book. The book is by Dennis Kelly, who also cowrote the Brit series Pulling with the hilarious Sharon Horgan, with music and lyrics by comedian/genius Tim Minchin. This production opened in the West End in November 2011, after a 12-week tryout in Stratford. It set a record at this year’s ceremony by winning 7 Olivier Awards (British Tonys), the most ever won by a single show.

    Clearly, expectations were high.

    Especially mine. I grew up on Matilda, my favorite of the Dahl novels. His sensibilities spoke to me, especially his perspective on children and childhood. His books refuse to romanticize either, to put it mildly, and I hoped and prayed that the musical would preserve the source material’s touch of darkness.

    Director Matthew Warchus told us at curtain call that the names of the four actresses who rotate in the title role were written down on pieces of paper and dropped in Mr. Wormwood’s hat. Little Sophia Gennusa was the name pulled that very day at Sardi’s, and so was the leading lady for the big night. Sophia is about as big as a minute, but brought to life a Matilda who is steely and determined. Matilda’s parents are pretty mean, but mostly stupid. (The Dursley’s owe much to the Wormwood’s.) They didn’t want her, and so do their best to pretend she doesn’t exist. To raise their ire, the 5-year-old Matilda insists on reading classic novels in the living room while the rest of the family watches TV. She’d probably get in less trouble if she hid her library books away in her room, but how tremendous is it that she’s not that kind of girl?

    Matilda doesn’t get by by batting her eyelashes at adults. Unlike the other children we meet in the opening number (“My mummy says I’m a miracle.”), Matilda hasn’t been handed self-worth on a silver platter, and she doesn’t expect life to do her any favors. She’s not wasting time looking for a savior. Matilda is cunning enough to have her parents’ number before she even starts the first grade and to know that the only person she can rely on 100% is herself.

    “Even if you’re little you can do a lot, you
    Mustn’t let a little thing like ‘little’ stop you.
    If you sit around and let them get on top, you
    Might as well be saying you think that it’s OK,
    And that’s not right.”

    Was Matilda born with the potential for the genius (plus a little extra) that she shows or did she develop her extraordinary skills to escape her miserable life? To me, Matilda is an allegory for abused and neglected children and the inner strength they have to maintain just to make it through.

    Matilda naughty

    Still, she charms grown-ups without even realizing it. Mrs. Perkins (Karen Aldridge), the town librarian and the biggest #gpoy in the entire show (“WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?”), is a Matilda superfan. She has to BEG the child to keep telling her the beautiful stories that seem to materialize in her head. Sophia has a beautiful voice, but I was most impressed with her when she climbed onto that alphabet block and delivered her wordy, sweeping monologues about the loves and losses of the escapologist and his wife, the acrobat. Those sequences were long, and would probably have been cut by a producer too intent on a tidy, marketable product. But they were some of my favorite scenes in the show, especially one that brought in an animation element that very literally took my breath for a second. They also have an interesting effect on Matilda’s teacher, the gentle and oppressed Miss Honey (Lauren Ward.)

    Bertie Carvel plays a Ms. Trunchbull plucked my 11 year-old imagination, from her cartoonish proportions to the way she calls for “Cooo-oooook.” He balances the performance with the perfect amounts of menace and goofiness. After all, Trunchbull is the rare children’s story villain who poses a real physical threat. Despite her terrifying backstory and brutish behavior, the audience is completely in love with the hammer-throwing headmistress. That’s the sneaky genius of Dahl and this production.

    And the songs! Tim Minchin, composer of my most very favorite “Fuck the Pope” song, is, let’s just say an unlikely choice to adapt a children’s book, but a perfect choice to translate the quirky and subversive work of Roald Dahl. He loves WORDS, clearly, when they rhyme and when they’re repeated over and over again and when come out in streams so fast you can hardly keep up. Fittingly, the songs in the show are very literary. You have to respect the delectable cleverness in rhyming “miracle,” with “mirror ball” and “empirical,” not to mention referencing both Ian McEwan and the TARDIS in the same show. (I knew the TARDIS lyric was coming, but that did nothing to stifle my glee hearing it sung live.)

    Act 2 opens with Mr. Wormwood (Gabriel Ebert), who is half Vaudeville performer/half British Jean Ralphio, breaking the 4th wall and apologizing directly to the audience for exposing them to all these horrible, book-reading children. And then he launches into a perfectly charming performance of the Head Over Feels national anthem, “Telly.” Please rise.

    “All I know I learned from telly,
    This big beautiful box of facts.
    If you know a thing already,
    Baby, you can switch the channel over just like that.

    Endless joy and endless laughter…
    Folks living happily ever after…
    All you need to make you wise
    Is 23 minutes plus advertisements.”

    You might argue that the telly is a villain in this story, but, you know, everything in moderation.

    Matilda Mr. Wormwood

    The stand-out number in the show, and what the cast will most likely perform at the Tonys, is the soaring “When I Grow Up.” Here’s the Olivier performance of the song:

    Don’t let the carefree kids and buoyant melody fool you. This is the SADDEST SONG ON BROADWAY. If you miss it in the lyrics, the staging should drive it home: we spend our childhoods dreaming of getting big and of all the things we’ll do when we’re in charge of our own lives. But, once we get there, we’ve forgotten all those things that we wanted. And some kids, like Matilda, don’t have the luxury of gradually growing “strong enough to carry all the/heavy things you have to haul around with you/when you’re a grown up.” They have to be that strong from the beginning.

    But a kid is a kid is a kid, whether she is beautiful, talented, brilliant, or none of the above. The closing song (before a neat and funny epilogue) is “Revolting Children.” A woman at the after party referred to it in conversation as “the Spring Awakening number,” and I agree with her. The similarities don’t end with the uniformed children stomping on wooden desks. I saw the correlation in the rebellion and acceptance, with “revolting” serving as both an adjective and a verb. ¡Viva la Revolución!

    Revolting Children Matilda

    I’d like to log a few last notes of appreciation for the ensemble members, both big and small; the exhilarating choreography by Peter Darling (Billy Elliot); and the jaw-dropping set and effects.

    Not very often does a show come around that is this widely appealing AND this damn interesting. This is one for the tourists and the theater snobs, alike. Matilda isn’t an impossible ticket to get, but it will be an expensive one. If you have the means or the right friends in the right places, GO.

    Notes from the after party:

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