Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Kendrick Lamar, Taylor Swift lead 2015 MTV VMA nominations

Some "Bad Blood" equals a plethora of nominations for Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar at the MTV Video Music Awards 32nd kudos fest honoring music videos.
The hit collaboration earned seven nominations for the iconic Moonman statute, including video of the year and best collaboration. "Bad Blood" also earned five professional nominations- best art direction, cinematography, direction, editing and visual effects.
Lamar was the biggest nominee of the year, tying Lady Gaga's 2010 record for most nominations in a single year with 13. In addition to "Bad Blood", his solo effort "Alright" will also contend for video of the year. This is the first time, again, since Lady Gaga in 2010, that one artist had two videos contend for the top award.
"Alright" is also up for male video, hip-hop video and direction. His collaboration with Flying Lotus on "Never Catch Me" was nominated for choreography and cinematography.
Swift comes up with the second most nominations this year with nine. The aforementioned seven for "Bad Blood" and best female video and pop video for "Blank Space". 
This marks the highest number of nominations for either Swift or Lamar in a given year, garnering respective total  career nominations of 15 and 16. 
The other video of the year nominees are Beyonce's "7/11" and Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars for "Uptown Funk," both of which have five nominations a piece
Rounding out the top category is "Thinking Out Loud" by Ed Sheeran. The video earned four nominations for Sheeran, who earned two more for his "Don't" video in below the belt categories.
The 2015 MTV Video Music Awards air live on August 30 with last year's video of the year winner, Miley Cyrus, hosting.

BeyoncĂ© – “7/11”
Ed Sheeran – “Thinking Out Loud”
Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar – “Bad Blood”
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk”
Kendrick Lamar – “Alright”
Ed Sheeran – “Thinking Out Loud”
Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars – “Uptown Funk”
Kendrick Lamar – “Alright”
The Weeknd – “Earned It”
Nick Jonas – “Chains”
BeyoncĂ© – “7/11”
Taylor Swift – “Blank Space”
Nicki Minaj – “Anaconda”
Sia – “Elastic Heart”
Ellie Goulding – “Love Me Like You Do”

Monday, July 13, 2015

TV Review: 'Delco Proper' Not Proper, But Funny

Anyone who's anyone from the Southeast area of Pennsylvania known as Delco - short for Delaware County - will tell you we are our own breed. We're horrible drivers, we're abrasive and the bar known as Barns (Barnaby's) is the hot drinking spot for a true Delconian.

Delco is so cool that the Oscar-winning film "Silver Linings Playbook" was shot in part in some of its communities. We didn't get to see the attitude that is definitive of the area, but it definitely put us on the map.

Now we have the Comedy Central web series called "Delco Proper", a series of short scenarios that could seem aberrant to those not familiar with this wonderful pocket of the state, but is not at all shocking to those who call Delco home.

In the first episode, Tommy, Izzy and John attend a high school classmate's funeral, or as Tommy refers to as, a "high school reunion".

"It's a funeral, Tommy," says John.

"OK, a sad high school reunion," Tommy assuredly responds.

In Delco, one seems to stick around longer than they mean to, and when an impromptu high school "reunion" isn't happening at a local watering hole, a funeral will suffice. Anytime you see more than one of your classmates in public, it can almost always be a "sad" high school reunion, funeral not needed.

It's part of our charm.

In Delco, we don't ask ourselves why we haven't left yet, we ask why everyone else is still here.

Meanwhile, Izzy wants to kick funeral-goer Donny's ass and hopefully throw him through a stained-glass window. Why? Who knows, it's Delco. Who says we need a legit reason to fight someone?

What transpires in the six-minute episode is, I guess you could say, Delco proper: arguing at a funeral; trying to get laid at said funeral; cursing during a eulogy. It's not to say that these are inappropriate events, they are, but not so inappropriate to us in Delco. There's nothing so shocking that could happen here that would make us say, "that would never happen here!", it's usually always, "only in Delco".

A shock to the pride of Delconians is that aside from the show's name, you wouldn't even know it was set in Delco. There are no defining landmarks that screams Delco - give us a Wawa or something! The characters and situations are typical of our people, you could easily see that if you've lived here long enough, but there's no way to say it's about us if it weren't for the show name. If you took Delco out of the title this would seem like the workings of any other show about foul-mouthed guys pushing themselves in unnecessarily comical situations, or one that exploits a certain event to benefit their own selfish means (which is typical in Delco).

That said, "Delco Proper" is a pop of laughs for its short runtime. It borrows heavily from the film "Clerks" where dialogue is a profanity-laced look at life yet is comforting in that it sounds authentic and true to life, and the characters mirror that film's Dante and Randall (who, also, cause trouble at a funeral). The situations the characters get involved in combine the craziness of the aforementioned with the workings of a "Seinfeld" episode

I'm not saying I didn't laugh, but there is nothing about Delco in this series, so far, whose physical identity resembles the name.

Rating: B-