Friday, April 20, 2007

Brazzle Dazzle Day

Today makes up for spending most of the week indoors cleaning. (I actually did finish up the dusting yesterday; I started Wendesday but ran out of time, so I did the bedroom where all my collections are Thursday afternoon.) It also makes up for last weekend's nasty weather. It was gorgeous today, the most gorgeous it's been all year, 70 degrees and perfectly sunny and breezy, without a cloud in the robins-egg-blue sky.

I volunteered today, but only in the morning. I spent this afternoon spending my birthday money and gift cards. I picked up lingerie, a nightgown on clearance, and a pair of capris from Fashion Bug (using that gift card and some birthday dough), a hair cut (it's shorter, just above my shoulders, and really cute), a good-quality 8'inch frying pan (my old one was flaking) and the "Laverne and Shirley" second season set from Wal-Mart, and "The Broadway Melody," "The Pink Panther Collection Vol. 3 - Frolics In the Pink," and "Garfield's Fantasies" from FYE, the latter two (barely) used.

I watched the three specials on the "Garfield's Fantasies" DVD tonight after I finally got home. "Babes and Bullets" is a mostly-straight film noir with a believeable mystery and a wonderful 40s-esque atmosphere. "Feline Fantasies" parodies everything from "Airplane" to Indiana Jones.

The centerpiece is "His 9 Lives," which is supposed to revolve around pretty much "Garfield in history," but is also a trip through animation history. While "Cave Cat," "King Cat (Egyptian)," "Garfield," and "Space Cat" are drawn in typical Garfield style, the remaining five shorts are, to say the least, unusual. "Court Musician" looks like a blocky 50s Looney Tunes short. "In the Garden" is a cross between a cutesy little girl-oriented special and the late 60s surrealism of something like "Yellow Submarine." "Stunt Cat" is a brief homage to silent cartoons. "Diana's Piano" is a gorgeous, touching watercolor piece. "Lab Animal 19-GB" is a Disney-esque cartoon on a subject Disney would never dream of touching.

While I enjoyed them, I can understand why they're among the least-seen of Garfield's prime-time adventures. All four feature some fairly adult subject matter, use none of the regular characters but Garfield, Odie, and (briefly) Jon, and stray far from the regular format of the show and other specials. To Jim Davis' credit, they're also not like anything else Garfield-related on the market, either. (I seem to recall a "His 9 Lives" book that was equally surreal.)

The "Fantasies" are recommended for Garfield fans looking for something different than the usual "Garfield eats, sleeps, then kicks Odie off the table," animation buffs (who'll have a field day recognizing the styles in "His 9 Lives"), families with older kids, fans of mysteries and film noir, and anyone who's interested in seeing the outer limits of 80s cartoons.

I also got the CDWarehouse order today. I've only had the chance to listen to one CD, the first one. It's mostly familiar music from the 90s movies and "Mary Poppins," but we also hear from rarities like the tongue-twisting "The Spectrum Song" from "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color," the 60s update of the original "Disneyland" program.

All in all, this is the best day I've had in months. I'm almost regretting having to go back to work tomorrow, since I heard it's supposed to be even nicer.

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