January 24, 2013 |
Flaked with offbeat witticisms, cheese ball effects and fanboy splatter gore, the surreal "John Dies at the End" has the vibe of a shaggy dog story, which works both for and against it. Cynical slacker Dave (Chase Williamson) meets jaded journalist Arnie (Paul Giamatti) to tell him about a powerful street drug called "soy sauce. " After Dave and buddy John (Rob Mayes) have ingested the substance, they find themselves on an adventure involving co-opted life-forms, mind reading and dimension-traveling insects.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 17, 2013 |
Dear Abby: "What would you do with a man who refuses to use a deodorant, seldom bathes, and doesn't even own a toothbrush?" "Absolutely nothing," she replied. The wry answer from Abigail Van Buren - the pen name of Pauline Friedman Phillips - was typical of the advice she dispensed for more than 40 years to newspaper readers around the world through her "Dear Abby" column, which debuted in 1956 in the San Francisco Chronicle. She got the bug to write it from her identical twin, who was already providing more homespun counsel in a syndicated newspaper column as Ann Landers.
December 17, 2012 |
Josh Gad, who was nominated for a Tony for "The Book of Mormon," is the co-creator and effectively the star of "1600 Penn," a new single-camera sitcom from NBC about the first family. It gets a preview Monday night to draft off "The Voice" before taking up a Thursday post in January. As in Comedy Central's "That's My Bush!" more than two election cycles back, the big idea is to stock the White House with characters familiar from a thousand years of situation comedy. We get a gruff and grumpy dad, the president (Bill Pullman)
December 13, 2012 |
Next spring, when the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments in United States vs. Windsor, a case challenging the Defense of Marriage Act, one argument likely to be made by DOMA's supporters is that of "responsible procreation. " The theory, which has been embraced by some courts and rejected by others, holds that federal marriage benefits are offered because the government has an interest in promoting stable families in which children are raised by their two biological parents.
October 18, 2012
Re "Getting to heart of tax brawl," Column, Oct. 15 George Skelton says the "practical effect" of Proposition 30's defeat would be a shortened school year, increased class sizes and increased college tuition. He writes: "There's a lot of cynicism about this by Prop. 30's anti-tax opponents. If the measure failed, they assert, these trigger cuts surely would be rescinded by the Legislature and governor under pressure from the powerful California Teachers Assn. " Let's see if I have this right: The anti-taxers say it's OK to defeat Proposition 30, but don't worry, if it does fail, the all-powerful California Teachers Assn.
September 16, 2012 |
Love it or hate it, the one thing you can say for sure about California's ballot initiative process is that it's the absolute worst way to craft policy dealing with complex scientific issues. That doesn't stop advocates on one side or another from constantly trying, with the result that the public's understanding of the underlying facts plummets faster than you can say, well, "Proposition 37. " Proposition 37 is on November's ballot. The measure would require some, but not all, food sold in California and produced via genetic engineering to be labeled as such.