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New Brad City: 10 Favorite Brad Moments from Happy Endings

31 Dec
HappyEndingsseason3e01

No one seems to pay for cable these days, but chances are, if you own a tumblr account or have access to .gifs, you’ve seen Happy Endings. The fast-paced, precisely-timed sitcom about dysfunctional friends living in Chicago has absolutely hit its stride this year in its third season, fleshing out its six kooky main characters and allowing each actor to really settle into his and her role, no one more so than Damon Wayans Jr, who is absolutely delightful as Brad Williams. Devoted husband, best friend, and candle enthusiast, Brad has dominated the season with .gif-worthy antics, sassy quotables, and weird voices all your friends have surely tried to impersonate. Here, I look back on Brad’s 10 best moments in 2012 season.

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Top 10 TV Characters of 2011

29 Dec

If you watch as much television as I do, meeting a new character on a show feels like adding someone new into your life, like that time I’d had the feeling I met a new guy but realized it was just because I’d been watching so much Lee Pace on Wonderfalls. Related: I could watch him hang out in a wooded clearing wearing a Northface fleece and drinking coffee forever. Call me Lee, whenever you get an inkling to do so. Anyway, like meeting a new person in real life, you’re somewhat wary of them. There’s a looming unfamiliarity and hesitance but eventually you both chip away those walls and gain an intimacy and connection.

This was easily one of the best years of television in awhile (ironically, the same year my bank account decided I could no longer afford cable) and with a dwindling amount of reality shows, an increase in programs based on the supernatural, and network television’s slow but sure move to creating storylines and cinematography that could rival film, this year gave way to some amazing TV. Also, we had Whitney.

In any case, here are my top 10 favorite new friends from 2011.

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Hurts So Good: The Glitter-Coated Sex Sounds of The Weeknd

2 Apr

My nighttime activities generally pose a constant problem for me: I’m horrible–HORRIBLE–at the club scene.  Here is a brief true and verbatim excerpt from my most recent night out when a guy started dancing with my friend:

Friend: No thanks
Guy: *shrugs, continues*
Me: I think you should stop! I think you should respect her boundaries as a woman!

Cool, professional club chitchat at its finest. But basically, the crux of my issue is this: I’m incapable of processing the sensory/sensuality/Redbull & vodka-soaked cave of makeup-melting grinding and dirty bathroom fights they call
“the club,” but I also enjoy a good night of debauchery, dancing, and a few choice items from the pharmaceutical takeout menu. My most recent solution to this puzzle has arrived in the form of 20-year old Abel Tesfaye AKA The Weeknd. Current speculation around the internet has him ushering in the next level of R&B and people are losing their minds over the distorted Beach House samples in his tracks. Continue reading

Man-Size’s Best of 2010

31 Dec

Man-Size may have fallen into an incidental hiatus, but its writers have been ever-vigilant, keeping their noses to the exciting, and, at times obnoxious, grindstone that is pop culture. What we are all taking away from 2010 is unique, but luckily, this year’s internet, television, film, and music were universal. To wrap up ’10, known in the Chinese calendar as the year of the Loko, we here at Man-Size have all made lists of the things that fueled the 3am sleep-deprived marathons and kept us sane in the midst of Lindsay Lohan, Weezy’s lock-up, and the American Skins remake. Enjoy, beautiful people, and may you wake up on the 1st with a full memory of the night before.

TOP FIVE NICHE-INTEREST WEBSITES OF 2010

I love the internet. Not only because it gives me the power to Google who invented kitty litter (Edward Lowe, word up) when I’m bored at 2am on a Wednesday, but because it provides a platform for all the precious people of the world to give us insight into the beauty of their brains. Fuck all the diatribes about puppies or patterned silk dresses on size negative models. The internet is full of nerds, and this is them chilling in Eden, eating all the fruit.

5. Pitchfork Reviews Reviews — Originally conceived as a place for avid P4K reader David to give his thoughts on the music reviews he’d just read, essentially reviewing the review, PRR has evolved into a hub of social commentary with its finger on the pulse of the ever-evolving music and pop culture. It’s a fascinating transformation to watch, with writing that gives you insight into one of our generation’s most unique minds.

4. Fuckyeahdarkplace — Deleted after only about two weeks, this tumblr was the Holy Grail for all things Darkplace (nee Garth Merenghi’s Darkplace, a British TV show from 2004 starring the incredible Matt Berry and Richard Ayoade—now a cult classic in America) and a way for the small handful of us to collectively jerk off to how much we loved the show via the internet. Then it became a dumping ground for British comedy as a whole and sucked and self-destructed.

3. Mad Men Footnotes — This site was a case study in the impact of popular culture on our interests and the accessibility of the internet in terms of allowing us to specialize in a specific aspect of it. From discussions on the landscape and the trends of the era to the motives behind the show’s character’s literary choices, MMF’s Natasha Vargas-Cooper let us sit shotgun as we rode through the phenomenon that is Mad Men, not even once mentioning Christina Hendricks’ breasts.

2. lolslater — Most TV shows for teens prior to Y2K are hilarious in terms of the absurdity of the fashions, plotlines, and characters. Saved by the Bell is no exception and thankfully, someone out there is willing to put it on blast. Through episode-breakdowns, humorously sharp musings, and constant (and appropriate) ridicule of the clothing and dialogue, lolslater gives us the serenity to accept that which we cannot change, and to laugh at it in the process.

1. Fuckyeahmenswear — Where the fuck do I even start with this site? Its author is unknown, but I hope in real life he’s single and living decently in a nice loft in Brooklyn, because I will find him and marry him. The premise is simple enough; take the popularity of fuckyeah-preceeded street fashion blogs and satirize it until it crumbles under the weight of its own pretension, but the true brilliance lies in the witty rhetoric, filled with internet idoms, cultural lingo, and words strung together to create almost unreal phrases (see creations like: Get thee wack ass to the steezery.)

Pulling Shapes in the Dark: The Smooth Night Moves of Trailer Trash Tracys

14 Sep

I wasn’t going to nightclubs in the 1980s and my only points of reference are the tacky, neon-lit dance cave full of crimped side ponytails and leather-on-bare-chest action in The Terminator and the smoky hipster-punk haven guarded by the big burly bouncer that wouldn’t let Ducky in in Pretty In Pink, but I feel pretty confident in saying Trailer Trash Tracy could’ve easily booked shows at both of those (most likely fictional) places.

The London four-piece, whose name’s origin is a mystery–although it is purported to be borrowed from either a Soviet burlesque act in the 1920s or a death metal bar in Sweden–came together just as their other band was falling apart. The previous band, which featured lead vocalist Suzanne Aztoria and guitarist Jimmy Lee, felt too contrived for the two and they broke off to form Trailer Trash Tracys. Though their former project was pop/indie rock, Aztoria and Lee, now joined by drummer Dayo James and Adam Jaffrey on bass guitar, decided to do something different.

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Hand Jobs; Or: how leopards are the best animal ever

5 Sep

Hand Jobs is a section of Man-Size wherein we show you how to do bomb nails all by yourself. Because special, important spirits don’t have time to sit in a salon and you can buy like, an entire pizza for the price of a manicure.

Here is a dope passage I came across in my extensive research (Wikipedia) re: leopards:

“The species’ success in the wild is in part due to its opportunistic hunting behavior, its adaptability to habitats, its ability to run at speeds approaching 58 kilometres per hour (36 mph), its unequaled ability to climb trees even when carrying a heavy carcass, and its notorious ability for stealth.”

Check that shit out. Leopards are the fucking tops y’all. I want to go back to first grade when all those kids said they wanted to be astronauts and racecar drivers and other foolishness, and laugh in their faces. Fuck being a doctor; I want to be a leopard when I grow up!

In honor of the most majestic, beautiful, and special spirit the Animal Kingdom has to offer, we here at Man-Size are going to show you how to do the kind of nails leopards would have if they had access to nail polish and opposable thumbs.

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Sun-Bathing Under Smoky Skies: The Hazy Summer Sounds of Still Corners

25 Aug

Still Corners

Summer is so draining. Have you seen what happens to people in the summer? They’re zombified. They talk slower, move slower, look generally unkempt (which works in my favor since it just so happens I’m into dudes that look like they’d laugh in your face when you ask them if they shower), and are really tired all the time. But that’s kind of perfect. Save your go-getting hustle for thick sweater weather and your I Want To Work For Diddy audition tape. Summer is for lazing by the pool baking like a Christmas ham. It’s for cutoff shorts and sweaty beers. It’s for high ponytails and popsicles.

And if you happen to need an album to soundtrack all the mid-day naps in the grass or the long hours spent roasting in the car on your way home from work, then you’re in luck. Still Corners–the dreamy quintet that is currently being hailed as the British Beach House–understands summer. More importantly, they understand the feeling of summer. Their music, equal parts lilting, slurring, and sexy–like a girl at the bar that manages to become more attractive as she gets drunker–moves slowly and lightly, like gauzy curtains rustling in the breeze with frontwoman Tessa Murray’s ethereal, almost whispery voice floating atop it like a canoe on a lake. It’s serene, but there’s a darkness to it. It’s the pleasantry that draws you in and the mystery that makes you stay.

The band’s only EP, 2008’s Remember Pepper, a six-track stroll through the most maudlin French carnival you could ever attend, feels distinctly more wintery, and makes you crave tiny cups of espresso and wearing heavy jackets with brightly patterned scarves, but the group’s newest releases, two 7-inches entitled Endless Summer and Don’t Fall in Love/Wish are adamantly summery; “Wish” is delicate and light, soft and sweet like a melting ice cream cone, while “Don’t Fall in Love” is hazy and dark, like dusk. The Beach House comparisons are most obvious on “Endless Summer,” which recalls the dense lo-fi pop of Devotion, but is infinitely sexier. Murray’s voice, best described as Beth Gibbons of Portishead doing a Victoria Legrand impersonation, is indisputably gorgeous, both eerie and powerful. It’s a gunslinger dressed in lace. It’ll smile when it hits you.

Still Corners is music, for lack of (and no desire for) better words, to get fucked to, and music to get fucked up to. And that’s really what summer is all about anyway, right?