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The Final Countdown: January 8th Edition

Let's face it:  All the people in this decade are way more advanced than you. They know things. They're capable of substantive conversation about what's going on in the post Aughties world. You? You're a wreck; a sweaty, stammering mess of 90s references, a cultural void. But all that can change! Your real friends at Culture Blues have put together a weekly rundown of worthwhile topics for you to wow these forward thinking jerks with, maybe even gain back some self respect. Your social redemption starts here.

Oh yeah, life's good.

Oh yeah, life's good.

(11)  Job search website CareerCast.com has crowned “actuary” as the best job in the world for 2010. Really? Tell that to Jack’s Dissociative Identity Disorder.

(10) We thought that we had come to terms with MGM's upcoming Robocop remake. Granted, a movie as perfect as Paul Verhoeven's ‘87 classic should never be remade, but at least Robocop was in the capable (and suitably weird) hands of Darren Aronofsky. Not anymore. Thanks to the success of Avatar, MGM now wants the movie shot in blockbuster ready 3D and Aronofsky, who won't have his vision sullied by stupid plastic glasses, is likely to drop off the project. We can only hope that this causes the Robocop remake to collapse entirely as MGM is already facing catastrophic financial troubles. Bitches, leave.

(9) On Wednesday, Netflix and Warner Bros. announced that new DVD and Blu-Ray releases would not be available through the by-mail rental service until 28 days after they hit stores. This guy is all pissed off about it. On a fundamental level, this is certainly messed up. We pay Netflix so that we can rent movies whenever we want. But now they are effectively telling us that we can’t rent movies whenever we want? Humph. In return, Warner Bros. will offer reduced product costs to Netflix, release more copies (which will decrease wait time), and expand titles available for streaming. In practice, this can only be good for us. There is something wrong if you absolutely have to see a movie the first month it comes out on DVD. Life is short; get out of the house. Besides - any time you get excited or plan a night around your Netflix rental, you can bet it will come cracked anyway.

"No, he's to blame for the collapse of NBC."

"No, he's to blame for the collapse of NBC."

(8) In some real bullshit, it appears that Jay Leno will be reclaiming his 11:30 timeslot. The shuffle at NBC is still shrouded in mystery and ineptitude, but the best guess is that Leno will be returning to 11:30 for a 30 minute monologue (oh, the humanity!) with Conan and that nice but slow Fallon boy each getting bumped back. This comes after months of Leno struggling to find an audience at 10pm, despite NBC's dogged insistence that Leno is funny and that a 10 o'clock talk show is a good idea. Apparently, huge fucking morons that like their comedy primarily centered on typos and mediocrity are too busy with George Lopez reruns on Nick-at-Nite to switch the dial over for some Jaywalking. Brandon Tartikoff would have never let this debacle happen. We hope that Conan has the balls to bail on NBC, take his reported 40 million payday, and breeze on over to FOX (even though we love our late night Seinfeld repeats). The only silver lining here is that NBC will likely return to airing (gasp) scripted television at 10PM come fall. And let’s not forget, this is the braintrust that brought us shows like Heroes. Oh wait.

(7) So, uh, they did this thing. Yesterday. On Facebook. Where, uh, girls were posting the color of their, uh, bra… in order to support breast cancer awareness. Which is cool, you know, because awareness is important. But seeing your ex girlfriend, or, you know… a family member… talk about their black lace bra is just… super awkward.

(6) The long-in-gestation Stephen King and John Mellencamp musical will open this September in Georgia, with a cast featuring Elvis Costello, Neko Case, Sheryl Crow and Stephen King himself. A CD/book combo will precede the stage production. While this whole thing sounds like a well-intentioned disaster, some dude from Esquire saw a table read and claims it’s “not only tolerable, it’s good.” And let’s face it, don’t we all want these crazy kids to succeed?

Menace II Propriety

Menace II Propriety

(5) NBA all-star Gilbert Arenas admits to bringing guns into the Washington Wizards locker room, and amazingly Commissioner David Stern’s head doesn’t explode. For Stern (who has made it his life’s work to convince America that the NBA isn’t full of dangerous, black thugs), this must seem like a personal attack. There are many ways the league could have spun this; it was just a stunt to help sell Washington Bullets throwback jerseys. It was a tribute to the ABA Indiana Pacers who played “cowboy” in the locker room – with guns (according to trainer Dave Craig in the terrific oral history Loose Balls, a gun actually went off once). It was just a goof. Instead, Stern has indefinitely suspended Arenas and will probably do everything in his power to see that he never steps foot on an NBA court again. Let this be a lesson to all – admit nothing, deny everything.

(4) In “pilots from TV creators we love” news, Fox is putting Shawn Ryan's Chicago cop drama Ridealong into production. We're certainly not expecting another The Shield, but this new project sounds closer to that stellar cable cop show than anything he's worked on since. And HBO is giving the nod to Deadwood creator David Milch's drama about all the kooky characters at a racetrack. We’re already intrigued, but if you’re not, know that Michael Mann is directing the pilot.

(3) There is a multiverse! We told you so. All those slanderous allegations you keep making against us? That we've been blaming on our doppelganger from the Negative Zone? Well, told ya so. Eggheads that are still paying attention to the Large Hadron Collider (we stopped caring after it failed to end the world) are saying that it might prove the existence of a parallel universe as early as, like, Tuesday, when it creates a nano black hole, or a Stargate type thingy, or some other science-y stuff. Whatever. All this fuss to figure out where so-called "dark matter" comes from. We could tell you that, nerds. Dark matter comes from magic. And Jesus. You’re welcome, science. Now hurry up and collide some particles so we can get that transdimensional pathway open again, we left the directions to our Cosmic Cube in the sex room of our alternate realty penthouse.

Goodbye, vain devil.

Goodbye, vain devil.

(2) Cue the sappy dramatic music. It’s over. This is the last season of Tyra’s talk show! Maybe it was the prayers. Maybe it was the incessant (hilarious) mocking by Joel McHale on The Soup. Maybe it was the realization that she is a vapid, narcissistic void of humanity utterly incapable of offering anything of worth to actual people. Whatever it is, it has ended her dark reign. For now, we are going to ignore the fact that Tyra and her advisors Oprah and Tyler Perry may be forming some sort of creepy melodramatic self-empowerment media conglomerate. Forget about that. No more Tyra! No more Tyra!

(1) We don’t really know what to say about beloved stand-up comic Artie Lange’s recent suicide attempt, but we’re pretty sure an off color joke is in order. So, congrats Artie, on managing to shatter the self-inflicted wound record previously held by Elliott Smith. We love you. Get well.

Jeremiah White, Jeff Hart, and Jason Arican contributed to this Countdown.

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