rubbercat.net

June 8, 2024
Comparison of Pepsi's new logo to the old one

Pepsi dropping out of second place immediately after they changed their logo is the ultimate vindication for the widely-mocked 2009 redesign


June 6, 2024

Everyday I go on the computer and I see a news story about a company laying off 1,000 employees

Then I see lanyard guys whining about how the stupid plebes just don’t understand that the economy is actually really great right now shrug

May 28, 2024

The internet is getting worse in many ways but on the positive side it helped me identify a song from a toy keyboard I used to have, a mystery that had eluded me since childhood. It’s “Spanish Coffee” by Frank Mills:

It turns out I’m not alone, a lot of people had been wondering about this song. I guess it always stood out in our minds because it had a dramatic opening and a moody, wistful melody that felt incongrous with Jingle Bells and whatever else was on that keyboard. It’s still unclear to me why this particular song was used – I’m assuming it’s public domain but couldn’t find verification – but it’s very satisfying to close the file on this mystery.

May 7, 2024

Back in 2000 Disney had to rush to make The Emperor’s New Groove‘s release date because they couldn’t break a contract with McDonald’s:

Allers: When they went with Mark’s version, the one thing they didn’t do was change the release date. So the Kingdom of the Sun release date became The Emperor’s New Groove release date.

Fullmer: We had a year, literally, to put that whole thing together. There’s a deadline because we got a McDonald’s Happy Meal that has to come on a certain date, and there are big fines to pay if you don’t do that.

Advertisement for Captain America: Brave New World toys at McDonald's

Nowadays they just release Happy Meal toys for movies that won’t come out for another year.

April 23, 2024

Blondie Watch

Siren Shocking development for this 93 year old comic strip: a named non-white character will be joining the cast, possibly for the first time ever.

Blondie comic strip. Blondie openly ponders hiring a pastry chef. In the last panel, the reader is encouraged to help name the pastry chef by voting on social media.

04/23/2024

New York Times:

The search for a new employee will also provide fodder for humor as Blondie interviews applicants. The new pastry chef, a young woman, will also open up story possibilities. “She’s able to bring some spontaneity to the catering company,” Erwin said. “She’s able to understand social media that can help Blondie’s business grow.”

Coston said the character is of Indian descent, and it’s “a nice nod to our faithful fans,” in India.

The poll to name her is here. The choices are Prasha, Maya, Tanvi, Deeva, and Naya, which all seem very normal for a world where characters have names like Dagwood, Blondie Boopadoop, Alexander Hamilton Bumstead, Cookie, and Fred Fuddle.

The New York CRIMES fails to mention this is not the first time Blondie asked its readers to name a new character:

Finally, an election worth caring about.

April 22, 2024
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Don’t know what that was all about

April 16, 2024
Illustration of various social networks personified as humans.

Recently I added Instagram and Threads accounts for rubbercat.net/simpsons to complement the existing Facebook and Twitter accounts. Yes, Social Media Bad, but I think it’s worthwhile to maintain a toehold in these communities. Anyway here are my impressions of the current posting landscape.

Bluesky: This is my preferred Twitter alternative since a lot of my internet friends are there, but there are some baffling UI decisions. I made a feed called McWorld that will show you people around the world posting about McDonald’s. It’s mostly Japanese people posting pictures of their meals (you have to specifically allow other languages in your settings to see this) and it’s very pleasant.

Instagram: It seems very counter-intuitive to have an account for your website on a platform that doesn’t let you post links. It’s nice to keep up with Simpsons accounts, though. I’m not sure exactly what to post there.

Mastodon: I’ve switched instances, my current profile is @robbercat@indieweb.social. I don’t think I have enough #content in me to sustain 10 or so different websites so lately I’ve been using it as sort of a catch-all hub for stuff I’ve posted elsewhere (or POSSE, as the kids say). I’ve always dug its “Federated” feed versus the algorithmic feeds on other platforms that are designed to make you mad about some culture war bullshit.

Threads: I joined mostly to follow ThatGuy3002. I find it very user-hostile; there’s no apparent way to make “Following” your default view so I have to click on it (which is hidden by the logo) every single time, lest I be exposed to what Max Read calls the gas-leak social network. It’s nice that I can follow some Threads users via Mastodon but they have to opt in and if they’re nerdy enough to do that they probably already have a presence on the fediverse anyway.

Tumblr: There was a period a couple months ago where the CEO was acting like a little freak. Seems like they managed to tranquilize him? I don’t know.

Twitter: My current least favorite “feature” is that if you have multiple accounts you’ll occasionally see a notification dot on one of them, so you check it out and it’s just… a random tweet. Usually from someone you don’t follow referring to something you have zero context for, and there’s no apparent way to turn this shit off. The other month on my Simpsons account I was alerted to a racist tweet from Anthony Cumia. I don’t follow Cumia, I don’t think I follow anyone who follows Cumia, and yet there it is.


April 3, 2024
Blondie comic strip. Alexander walks in, complaining about how silly video 'reels' on Instagram and Facebook are driving him crazy. Dagwood asks have you tried real life?
April 3, 2024

Supa Hot Fire rap battle reaction

March 3, 2024
Nancy Ritz: second grader since 1933
March 2, 2024

I was curious if Nancy’s last name being Ritz had any precedence, and I’m surprised to learn it dates back to 1937, if not earlier:

A teacher welcomes a new student to class, Miss Nancy Ritz.
December 2, 1937 (h/t Johnny Callicutt)

Also, I assume right before this comic starts Fritzi is recounting the horrific deaths of Nancy’s parents:

Fritzi and a man named Wally sit on a couch. 'So your little niece is staying with you now eh Fritzi?' he asks.
January 2, 1933
February 6, 2024

All this talk of Apple’s new VR headset reminded me of this edit of the Google Glass “concept” video by the late Morgan Vogel, which I’d thought was gone forever:

January 23, 2024

RECENT FINDINGS

  • I didn’t realize the jaunty tune Mickey Mouse whistles at the beginning of Steamboat Willie was an actual pre-existing song with lyrics:

    Steamboat Bill steaming down the Mississippi
    Steamboat Bill, a mighty man was he
    Steamboat Bill steaming down the Mississippi
    Going to beat the record of the Robert E. Lee

    (via @rwmead)

  • The real Dennis the Menace’s birthday is September 11th (and if you ask me the REAL menace is Hank Ketcham) [via @damnyouwillis]
  • Marge Simpson hadn’t been named in the Tracey Ullman shorts and is referred to as “Juliet” in the first draft of the show (via @dailysimpsons and Jay Kogen)
January 9, 2024

2023 FILM IN REVIEW



Once again my quest to watch all the Blondie movies has made Frank R. Strayer my most-watched director. Likewise my most-watched actor is Jonathan Hale, whom I just wrote a brief appreciation of in my Blondie Knows Best review. I looked back at my previous posts and just noticed I logged the same amount of movies in 2021 and 2022 which is weird.

Best film I saw in 2023: Jean de Florette (part 1) and Manon of the Spring (part 2)

Best film I saw in 2023 that was released in 2023: This seems like a really normie opinion but I think I am going to go with Oppenheimer

Worst film I saw in 2023: The Flash

Best movie featuring Captain Marvel: The Good Humor Man

Best animated film: Pixar’s Sodas

Best comedy: Brigsby Bear

Best movie that’s technically an unfinished workprint: The Sweatbox

Best cinematography: The Cranes Are Flying

Films I saw in 2023 for the first time:

1. The Sound of Music
2. Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
3. The Rink (short)
4. Terrorizers
5. Top Gun: Maverick
6. The Menu
7. Dont Look Back
8. Emily the Criminal
9. Ant-Man and the Wasp
10. Goodbye Jerome! (short)
11. Summer Lovers
12. First Reformed
13. Not Another Teen Movie
14. Blondie Plays Cupid
15. The Hitch-Hiker
16. See How They Run
17. The King of Comedy
18. All Quiet on the Western Front
19. A Brighter Summer Day
20. Dinosaur
21. My Year of Dicks (short)
22. Star Trek: Nemesis
23. Wendell & Wild
24. The Incredibly True Adventures of Two Girls in Love
25. Fire of Love
26. The Banshees of Insherin
27. Le Pupille (short)
28. On-Gaku: Our Sound
29. The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension
30. The Fabelmans
31. McCabe & Mrs. Miller
32. Wayne’s World
33. Paper Moon
34. Pumpkin
35. Women Talking
36. Baby (short)
37. Navalny
38. The Emperor’s New Groove
39. The Sweatbox
40. Triangle of Sadness
41. Yes, Madam!
42. Everything Everywhere All At Once
43. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
44. Police Story 3: Supercop
45. Casino Royale (2006)
46. Air Force One
47. Blondie in Society
48. Kronk’s New Groove
49. Little Women (2019)
50. Lincoln
51. Taipei Story
52. The Super Mario Bros. Movie
53. Hangmen Also Die!
54. Mission: Impossible 2
55. Atlantis: The Lost Empire
56. Shooter
57. Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World
58. The Powerpuff Girls Movie
59. Blondie Goes to College
60. Lost Highway
61. Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret.
62. Demonlover
63. Adventureland
64. The Birdcage
65. Party Girl
66. Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow
67. Good Intentions (short)
68. The Brothers Warner
69. Underwater Love
70. Urusei Yatsura: Beautiful Dreamer
71. Asparagus (short)
72. Shazam! Fury of the Gods
73. Blondie’s Blessed Event
74. Chan Is Missing
75. Reality
76. Apocalypse YASSS: Two Girls, One Rapture (short)
77. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse
78. The Hilarious Posters (short)
79. RRR
80. Brigsby Bear
81. The Doom Generation
82. The Searchers
83. The Sea Beast
84. Freddy Got Fingered
85. How Do You Measure a Year? (short)
86. Hot Shots!
87. Blondie For Victory
88. Inland Empire
89. Nimona
90. Hot Shots! Part Deux
91. Tropical Malady
92. Brother Bear
93. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny
94. The Grand Budapest Hotel
95. The Cranes are Flying
96. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania
97. Toy Story 4
98. It’s A Great Life
99. Déjà Vu
100. A Man Escaped
101. Mission: Impossible 3
102. Home on the Range
103. Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words
104. Oppenheimer
105. Punch Punch Forever! (short)
106. Stage Fright
107. The Seven Year Itch
108. Barbie
109. Cocktail
110. A Whisker Away
111. Blue Beetle
112. Drop Dead Gorgeous
113. Rio Bravo
114. Footlight Glamour
115. Babylon
116. Angel Heart
117. Ugetsu
118. Aliens
119. Her Man
120. Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story (short)
121. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
122. It Always Rains on Sunday
123. Void (short)
124. How to Blow Up a Pipeline
125. King Kong (1933)
126. The Flash
127. Leave It to Blondie
128. Mommie Dearest
129. Duel
130. The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar (short)
131. The Swan (short)
132. The Rat Catcher (short)
133. Poison (short)
134. Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie
135. The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness
136. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem
137. Haunted Mansion (2023)
138. Cure
139. They Cloned Tyrone
140. Once Upon a Studio (short)
141. The Creator
142. Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One
143. Suspiria
144. Skinamarink
145. Monster High: The Movie
146. Scavengers (short)
147. Life with Blondie
148. A Nightmare on Elm Street
149. Evil Dead 2
150. Killing Gaza
151. Elemental
152. Killers of the Flower Moon
153. Batman: The Long Halloween, Part Two
154. Body Snatchers
155. Quiz Lady
156. The Leopard
157. All the Way
158. Bolt
159. My Darling Clementine
160. The Giant Gila Monster (MST3K)
161. Tetris
162. A Boy Named Charlie Brown
163. Blondie’s Lucky Day
164. The Chase
165. The Killer
166. The Marvels
167. Eight Crazy Nights
168. Defending Your Life
169. Jean de Florette
170. Good Burger 2
171. The Good Humor Man
172. Manon of the Spring
173. Blondie Knows Best
174. Albert Brooks: Defending My Life

January 3, 2024
Tweet from the Internet Archive dated January 1, 2024 welcoming Steamboat Willie into the public domain

 
https://archive.org/details/SteamboatWillie

Screenshot indicating Steamboat Willie was uploaded on November 4, 2015

If I was the Internet Archive and facing a major lawsuit from book publishers I would simply not call attention to the fact I’d been illegally hosting a copyrighted film for the past 7 years

December 24, 2023
A Blondie Christmas card from 1951 featuring Dagwood carving a turkey for his family that says Season's Greetings

(source)
November 18, 2023

NANCY SAMEDI*

*Legally distinct from Sluggo Saturday


09/23/1944


04/19/1966

Thought you could get away with repeating the same dialogue 22 years later??? Well guess what, Ernie Bushmiller… you’re fucking BUSTED.

November 14, 2023

I tinkered with my About page and reverted it back to its original title of Meta. My goal was to simplify things and provide better clarity. The site now has an 88×31 button for the first time:

October 26, 2023

I watched the newly-restored Disney short Mickey’s Kangaroo and was shocked to hear Pluto talking. Well, technically, he looks directly at the viewer in a somewhat unnerving way and seemingly transmits his thoughts to us telepathically, but still. It’s a surprisingly gruff voice. I can see why they immediately abandoned this and had him keep his thoughts to himself for the next 90 years.

I remembered hearing Snoopy talk in a Peanuts cartoon once where they go in the opposite direction and give him a slightly nebbish young guy voice so I went to look that up, found this video, and was equally shocked to see a fleeting glimpse of Lucy and Linus Van Pelt’s parents. Behold:

Charlie Brown and Snoopy watch as the Van Pelts drive off in a red car.