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12:53 pm - Thursday, May. 22, 2003
America's Newest Superhero, Or Just Some Nut Wearing A Red Bath Towel?

America's Newest Superhero, Or Just Some Nut Wearing A Red Bath Towel?

Thurs 5/22/03 8:57 am

Had the anti-drug PSA callback yesterday.

It was back at Westside (At Maryclaire Sweeters). There were three other castings going on at the same time, so the lobby area was full of young hardbodies (For a commercial for Champion), a smaller group of people wearing bathrobes (I think for Melitta, if I'm spelling that right), and the middle-aged "Dads" and "Dealers" for the drug spot (The drug spot also involved some young hardbodies. I watched some of them being taught a cheerleading routine at one point).

I found myself getting annoyed when I had to wait a full 45 minutes after my time before getting to go in. It wasn't that I had something else I had to rush off to–It was my day off, and I didn't have any big plans–but it's just hard to wait that long, sitting on wooden benches (If you can get a seat at all), when there's no copy to study, and you can't really read or anything because there's just too much noise and activity in the room, and you might get called in at any second anyway.

There was still no copy, or even a description of the spot; All they did was call four of us in--four "dealers"–and have us improvise watching our kids at a basketball game (Me and another guy were the "visitors", while the other two guys were the "home team").

Doing the improv was pretty funny. We weren't given a lot of instruction–Just that we start arguing with each other at some point--so there we were, four guys who didn't know each other from Adam a minute before, yelling and waving our arms around like we're seconds away from throwing punches. If you stopped to think about it, was pretty weird.

I'm not sure what all this has to do with drugs or being a "dealer" or anything like that, but I left the audition having had fun, and feeling like "There's no reason I couldn't get this...". I was happy to finally get in the room, and I made a point of letting that show, and I threw myself into the improv pretty enthusiastically, so it's just gonna come down to the stuff I can't control–Essentially, what are they looking for, and am I it?

But that was the second callback I've had this month. Add that to the two I had last month, and it makes me feel like some kind of momentum is building. I feel like it's just a matter of time before I progress to the next step and start booking some of these things.

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(WARNING: The next part of this entry is all about Buffy, so if you haven't watched the finale yet, or you could care less about the whole Buffy thing,, you might want to skip this.)

I watched the series finale after I got home from work Tuesday night, and overall, I was pretty disappointed; I wanted the series-ending apocalypse to be the best apocalypse yet, and in my opinion it just wasn't. In fact, it was way down the list.

(My favorites? Season two, where Buffy has to kill Angel to save the world–and not just killl him, but consign him to an afterlife of torment–because it had the stuff of truly epic tragedy, not to mention I thought "Angelus" was a kick-ass "Big Bad". And the season finale where Glory was "The Big Bad"–season before last?–because I thought it made great use of all the characters, reintroduced some things I'd thought were pretty stupid initially–like the "Buffy-bot"--to surprisingly good effect, and of course, it doesn't get much more "tragically epic", or "epically tragic", than our hero sacrificing herself to save the world in general, and her sister in particular. And I thought the epitaph at the end of that episode managed to be both funny and touching at the same time; I know I'm probably getting it wrong, but the tombstone said something like "Beloved Sister. Devoted Friend. She saved the world a lot".)

But there were a couple of things I did like about the series-ending finale...

One thing I wandered about leading up to the final episode was "What do you do for an encore when you've already killed your hero... twice?", so I thought it was a master stroke to not kill her, but instead, kill the "In every generation, there is only one" mythology (The implications of that would make an entry in and of itself). The montage of women getting the "Slayer power" as Buffy says, in voiceover, "Now everyone that could be a Slayer will be a Slayer..." was undeniably moving and powerful.

(Though that said, it was also confusing, and "muddied the waters" a bit; One of the major plot points of the season was that all the Slayer "potentials" were being murdered, and the relative handful that were left had made it to Sunnydale. So who were all these women who were getting empowered?)

I also liked that Spike got a hero's death. That character's had quite an amazing "arc" over the run of the show, and the character (And James Marsters, for that matter) deserved a great, meaningul, redemptive sendoff. It had become clear that while he and Buffy have a "connection" , it's not "true love", at least not on her part, so his sacrifice, I thought, had a real complexity to it. And I loved that he was laughing as he started to disintegrate.

And in terms of just a great image, I liked Buffy running along the roof of the collapsing high school, and her Slayer-powered leap through the air, as she landed on the roof of the escaping bus (I sort of have a thing about people running along roofs; I remember finding that one of the most powerful images in The Crow as well).

But...

The rather perfunctory dispatching–or "re-dispatching"--of Caleb at the start of the episode was disappointing. And Angel being in the episode felt completely pointless, like it was just "throwing a bone" to the fans (Other than his providing the "deus ex machina" of the amulet thingie, he might as well have not been there, and they treated it as kind of a joke. Not to mention the way they behaved towards each other being completely out-of-synch with who Angel is on his show, or where things were left the last time he and Buffy were together).

And the whole thing with the "potentials" has felt like a major botch from the start; A bunch of characters we never really got to know–and the few we did get to know we didn't like (Except maybe the girl from Freaks and Geeks)--so who cared if they lived or died or became "Slayers" or whatever?

And the "uber-vamps" suddenly didn't seem any more "uber" than normal vampires (Hard to shake the image of the first "uber vamp" we saw this season tossing Buffy around like a rag-doll).

And while I didn't have any problem with Buffy being wounded, don't have "The First" refer to it as a "mortal wound", if you're then going to have Buffy just get up and shake it off by superhuman force-of-will. I know it was supposed to seem powerful, but it was just stupid.

And we had two major characters die, and there was basically no response from anyone afterwards. I found that disconcerting (And to have Xanders only response to hearing of Anya's death be "That's my girl–Always doing the stupid thing" was...disrespectful. They gave Spike a good death, but threw Anya on the scrap heap. Literally).

I could go on–And Cary called while I was in the middle of this, and brought up still more "issues" about the finale that I totally agreed with–but I think you get the idea.

I didn't really like the ending.

But in a way, that's kind of a good thing. Now I'm not thinking "There were so many more good stories to tell...". Instead, it feels like they were out of gas, and it's time to be happy it had such a good run, and move on.

And speaking of "Moving on."...I thought I was going to write about some more stuff, but this entry is long enough as it is, and I'm starting to feel like the day is getting away from me, so I'm going to stop now, and call it good.

 

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