Pop Culture Happy Hour: On The Comedians, and Cameo Appearances

The new F/X series The Comedians, and the cameo appearance, are the topics of today’s Pop Culture Happy Hour, which I was delighted as always to be a part of even though it means I don’t get to do the Daredevil episode.

On the cameo side, I came in prepared to sing the praises of Anchorman 2‘s crazypants climactic melee, a 12-way brawl wherein stars Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Steve Carrell, and Larry Miller throw down with Sasha Baron Cohen, Kanye West, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Jim Carrey, Marion Cotillard (!), Will Smith, Kirsten Dunst, Liam Neeson, Harrison Ford, and John C. Reilly as the Ghost of “Stonewall” Jackson.

If our discussion of cameos makes me a little nostalgic, maybe it’s because the very first thing I had published on NPR’s website was a dissection, which I co-wrote with my Pal-for-Life and full-time Pop Culture Happy Hour panelist Glen Weldon, of the cameo-rich 1978 comic book Superman Vs. Muhammad Ali.

Also, I wish I’d taken a moment during my encomium to Bengies Drive-In Theatre to explain what sorts of movies are best-served in its wonderfully anachronistic outdoors environs: Not the must-see pictures you’re seeing for the first time, but the movies you kinda-sorta want to see but probably would not pay $14 for. At Bengies, you can see two or three movies for $10 a head, remember. It’s 53 miles from my apartment in DC, so factoring in $10 for gas, and another Hamilton-spot for an Outside Food & Beverage Permit – $10 per car, on the honor system, but c’mon, we want this family-owned-and-operated independent cinema to stay afloat – you still get away for about the same amount you’d spend on a double-feature at a Regal Cinemas. And you see the movies in a more unique, welcoming, lightning bug-enhanced environment.

Last summer, I saw The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and 22 Jump Street on a double-bill there. The summer before that, I caught a triple-feature of Brave, Moonrise Kingdom (essential, but it was my second viewing), and Ted. Those are the kinds of movies that flourish in a setting where you may not catch every line or even every scene. Furious 7 is ideal for the drive-in.

FURTHER READING: My March 2014 Dissolve review of Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (Super-Sized, R-Rated Edition).

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