ABC’s “Castle” – Muse and Murder


Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion of ABC’s “Castle”

Edging over to the lighter side today to talk about one of the best TV shows to come along in a long time, “Castle” on ABC.   Now in its second season, “Castle” follows the exploits of a New York City homicide detective Kate Beckett who, due to the Mayor’s friendship with crime novelist Ricard Castle, is saddled with said writer as a long-term drive-along.   Being a writer, I liked the idea of a writer tagging along with a homicide detective and the potential for the comedic collision of a charismatic novelist with a by-the-book detective.

As with most crime shows that have stood the test of time, “Castle” is more character-driven than plot-driven.   Taking a look back at “Homicide: Life on the Streets” and other classics such as “Magnum, P.I.” and even more contemporary shows like “NCIS” and “CSI: NY” the web of solving the case at hand takes a backseat to what we learn about the characters along the way.  The character of Kate Beckett is rather secretive as the onset and the interaction that is woven between she and Castle is what makes the show.

Initially there is some negativity as Beckett resents having to babysit the well-known playboy yet interestingly enough, as time passes she realizes that his knowledge of crime scenes, his personal connections and his often smarmy charm serve them both well when attempting to solve a murder.   As the second season develops they begin to interact socially more frequently and it appears, based on last night’s teaser for next week’s episode, they are going to be working closely together on an assignment that Beckett considers to be the most important of her career.


Maureen Dowd: Is there a real McCain?

Intelligence officials were adamant that this was a message from a POW still alive in Southeast Asia

I have often read Maureen Dowd’s column and I find her refreshing and enjoy her edgy commentary even if I don’t always agree with her.  Yet, her December 22nd (Yeah, I know, I am a little behind from the Holidays) column on John McCain couldn’t be more on the money.  John McCain has and always will be loyal to only one entity, himself.  Maverick is a kind term for pig-headed and self-centered.  John McCain is never wrong, even when he is.  You see his reality is a place where he is king, the center of attention in any room and he is the intellect whose opinion everyone seeks.

I have always been struck by McCain stating in his first interview when he returned from Vietnam that he wanted to get involved in politics.   An interesting turn of event for someone from a long line of military officers.   What experience did he have that would make him break with tradition?  One can only speculate and since I have no reliable confirmation of my opinion, I prefer to not express it here.

What I would like to do is direct readers to this blog post that chronicles McCain’s history in an issue where he should have been the one leading the charge instead of digging in his heels.

If John McCain cannot support those who never returned from Southeast Asia when he, most likely due to his family ties, returned to have a prosperous life and political career, well, as the blogger so vividly summarizes, it is indeed the measure of the man.

Current Events, MSM, Obama Administration, Politics

“Eight Years Later”? The NYT Editorial Needs a History Lesson

This narrow-mined editorial, sans by-line,  in the NY Times is nothing more than the Obama Press attempting to spin an issue, as he often does, claiming inheritance as his cover. 

More and more often Obama himself or a member of his staff is pointing the finger at the Bush Adminstration for their ills. I find this move childish and a true sign of the simple fact that Obama just wanted to show that he could win the election, not run the country. Much like the brides who focus their entire energy on planning the perfect wedding, they never take a look at what happens after the honeymoon and if she and her future husband really have what it takes to survive marriage.

The “ghost” writer of this editorial needs to do some homework on the intelligence community – they are a bunch of boys playing on the same playground refusing to share their toys. The CIA, FBI, NSA, HLS, etc. all want to be the one getting the press when a story breaks so they refuse to share info and we, the American people, pay the price.

Legislation has been passed, some even repeatedly, insisting that the big boys of DC’s Alphabet Soup Gangs start freely sharing information yet they still refuse to do so for no other reason that pride, bragging rights. This has been a problem long before Obama was born, let alone took office. If Obama wants agencies to share information he will have to start making high-level heads roll to get their attention.

Unfortunately, Obama is still sitting on his couch eating popcorn watching his inauguration, much like the unhappy bride watching her perfectly planned wedding video … both are ignoring the reality that is staring them in the face and wondering how something so perfectly planned could have gone so badly so quickly.


Jasper Schuringa: Being the Thermostat

Jasper is now a household name, he is getting his 15 minutes and then some. Unlike many who find themselves in the limelight for not so pleasant things, Jasper is the exception.  In fact, I say let’s give him more than just his 15 minutes, let’s give him an entire hour; Lord knows he deserves it.

Jasper is the heroic Dutchman who, while quietly sitting in Seat 20J of Northwest Flight 253 from the Netherlands to Detroit, saved America from a terrorist attack on Christmas Day. On December 28, 2009 the Washington Post’s Views Section posted this question about the secret to spontaneous leadership.

Just like those brave Americans on Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania on 9/11, Jasper is made of that little extra something that makes him instinctively act while others simply watch.   What that is, we may never truly know.  Could it be a strong upbringing with rock-solid values?  A diligent work ethic?  A Type A personality?  We could go on and on.

This past weekend I was struck by an amazingly concise and powerful concept that Jasper certainly exemplifies.  In life we have two choices in any give situation; we can be the thermostat or the thermometer.  We can either make things happen or simple react to what is happening around us.

Part of my New Year’s Resolution is to be more like Jasper … How about you?

Mary Ann

Current Events, Entertainment, Hollywood

Get a real job, Griffin!

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 26: Kathy Griffin arrives at the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on January 26, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Dan MacMedan/WireImage)
Comedienne Kathy Griffin 

I have changed careers before, yes, it is not fun and there is a lot of soul searching involved in it as well, but there are some people that really need to let their dreams of fame and fortune go and just get a real job.  D-List comedianne Kathy Griffin is one of them.

CNN apparently didn’t learn their lesson last year when Griffin went vulgar on their New Year’s broadcast because they had her on again this year.   Once again, she decided to play with the F-bomb relating it to the first name of the now infamous “Balloon Boy”.

Now, I am not a prude, when things don’t go as planned, the f-bomb flies out of my mouth as well but my mother would disown me if I said it on national TV least of all during a festive event like the New Year’s broadcast.  Griffin is a perfect example of someone who has stayed too long at the bottom of the celebrity food chain and just needs to go home.

This shtick of hers has been around for over a decade and I am willing to bet that the average American is sick and tired of her off-handed insulting comments (Remember her “Jesus, suck it!” comment?) which she later covers up in an apologetic press release. Yet, she continues to whore herself out for money as a comedic Howard Stern.  Kathy, the 80’s ended twenty years ago, Honey.  Your contemporaries really don’t think it is funny anymore.

Get you resume together and start posting on monster.com …


Ann Coulter’s take on Homeland Security: Right on the Money


This week Ann Coulter took a pretty hard swing at Homeland Security in her column over the failed terrorist attack in Detroit on Christmas Day.   Yet she made an extremely solid point “The government refuses to perform the only possibly effective security check — search Muslims — so instead it harasses infinitely compliant Americans. Will that help avert a terrorist attack? No, but the Americans don’t complain.”

Being someone who spends a lot of time in airports I have to agree with Ann on this one.   I have gotten in fights with TSA agents over taking off military dogtags and exchanged jabs with them over the inconvenience of being one of those randomly selected individuals for a more detailed search.

We as a a nation are stumbling over ourselves to not do what we all really know we should do; select Middle Eastern men traveling alone, who pay for their tickets with cash and have no luggage.   That is not profiling – profiling is when you only use the variable of nationality/physical appearance.   When one includes the other variables it cannot be considered profiling – it is simply doing what every History tells their students – learn from history’s mistakes so as not to repeat them.