November 2009 Archives

Well, naturally, the act has evolved over the years. For business reasons, mainly. I mean, you've gotta change with the times or the crowds... well, the crowds go elsewhere. And in a town like this, there's plenty of elsewhere for them to go, if you get my drift. So you've gotta keep adding new gimmicks to the act, new twists, new cast members. When I started, it was just me. That was enough for 'em in the beginning. Hell, half the act was Q&A with the audience. Now we've got, what, forty people in the cast -- dancers, backup singers, et cetera. Not to mention the pyrotechnics, the lighting. It's quite a production now. A circus. And, of course, all of this costs money. I should know that better than anyone, since it comes outta MY bottom line. But my manager, Gary, keeps giving me the old "spend money to make money" routine.

Where is that bastard, anyway? He's never around when I need him. I'm the Invisible Man, and he's the Invisible Manager. Heh. Probably off snorting more of my money up that big schnoz of his. Don't print that.

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"Since when is it a crime to be invisible?"

So said the sullen suspect seated across from Detective Marino in the precinct's main interrogation room. Marino was a 20-year veteran of the force, so he was used to hard cases, but nothing in his experience had prepared him for confronting an empty prison jumpsuit. At least the suspect was in handcuffs, which theoretically prevented him from disrobing and getting up to any mischief, but it was still disconcerting that they were suspended in the air in front of seemingly vacant shirtsleeves.

"Umm, well, it's not a crime in and of itself," Marino began. The suspect didn't let him finish.

"So if it's not a crime, why are you holding me?" he hissed. "What's the charge?"

"That... is what we're here to figure out."

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With the current state of the economy, it was only a matter of time before Fear Itself got around to addressing the housing crisis, and it did so somewhat obliquely with "Chance," a story about a couple in danger of losing their home when they get three months behind on their rent due to financial mismanagement. Of course, if the episode had aired last summer as originally planned it probably would have seemed a whole lot more timely and maybe even a little prescient. After all, haven't we as a nation been taken for a ride by a crooked antiques dealer (read: the federal government) who got us to sink our life's savings (read: billions of our tax dollars) into a shady deal (read: the Wall Street bailout) involving a rare, 16th-century vase? (Okay, that's where my metaphor breaks down, but you get the point, right?) As it is, "Chance" will have to make do with being slightly behind the curve, but that's not such a terrible place to be. It's better than being behind the eight ball.

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"Hegel remarks somewhere that all great, world-historical facts and personages occur, as it were, twice. He has forgotten to add: the first time as tragedy, the second as farce." - KARL MARX (1852)

"Reunited and it feels so good." - PEACHES & HERB (1979)

And so we meet again, Fear Itself, under circumstances neither of us could have foreseen. It's been a while, my erstwhile muse. Have you lost weight? Or do you just look smaller because now I'm watching you on the Internet? The last time we met, of course, you were on the National Broadcasting Company. Then you lost your coveted network time slot to the Beijing Olympics and completely dropped out of sight. I heard not long ago, you were peddling yourself on DVD, all dolled up in a cheap plastic case bearing the image of what appears to be a skeleton with priapism. How sad! I don't know how that turned out for you, but now here you are streaming for free on the FEARnet website.

The move suits you. These new, more humble digs are just your style. Let's face it, NBC was no kind of a home. It was an untenable situation from the get-go. Audience members have certain baseline expectations for network television, expectations you could never hope to match. But on the Internet, all people expect is to see idiots getting hurt, and that's something you've always been able to provide, Fear Itself.

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This page is an archive of entries from November 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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