Saturday, January 10, 2015

Queen of Winter

I really slept in today! I didn't get up until around 9:30, and it was past 10:30 before I got dressed and started breakfast. I did another hour-long Red Skelton Show while I ate. This one seemed to be from the mid-60s, from the cracks about Lyndon B. Johnson's inauguration and the Republicans losing the White House. The main skits had George Appleby buying a bear trained to box and setting him up in the ring at a fair. When the bear is paired off against then-heavyweight champ Archie Moore, he takes off, leaving George to fight Moore himself! A couple of musical segments put British singer Shani Wallis (who later played Nancy in the film version of Oliver!) into the lovely "I'm Old Fashioned" and a British musical hall dance routine with the boys' chorus. (And disappointingly, no commercials this time.)

Finally headed out around 12:30. I was going to stop at the Oaklyn Library first, but for some reason, they were closed today. Moved on to the Westmont Plaza instead. I took a brief look at Tuesday Morning first. No WebKinz today, but much to my surprise, they did have a couple of Ever After High dolls - Briar, C.A Cupid (the very romantic adopted daughter of Eros), and Raven Queen (the kind daughter of the Evil Queen from Snow White). I went with Raven. I've had a harder time finding Raven for a good price than Cupid or Briar, and they did have two of Cupid left. She was $14.99, cheaper than her original $21.99 or I've seen her Amazon lately, though not as cheap as Briar, Blondie, and Cerise were on Amazon when I bought them.

The Haddon Township Library was incredibly busy, even for a weekend. There was something going on in their meeting room. I couldn't tell what. I'm glad I came today. The DVD return racks were overflowing, for adult and kids' titles. I couldn't close to get everything on the shelves, even with tons of rearranging. Helped quite a few people, including a mother who was looking for non-fiction books for her daughter's schoolwork and a little boy who wanted to find a book on Minecraft. I did end up taking out that cookbook with the vintage cake recipes, along with Happier at Home, Planes: Fire & Rescue, and the newest releases for Doc McStuffins and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

(And I noticed a sign at the library's front entrance as I was leaving that announced an art show this afternoon. So that's what was going on in the meeting room and why there were so many kids at the library today!)

I'd never seen Friendly's so busy, either. Lots of families seemed to have ignored the freezing temperatures to take their kids out to a late lunch. (It was past 2:30 by the time I made it there.) I had the Turkey Club Melt special with fries and a hot chocolate. No ice cream in 20 degree weather! Besides, I still have a lot of junk at home.

Though it was sunny and windless, it was also still bitterly cold. I just went straight home. This was no day to be lingering outside. When I got in, I went right into de-boxing Raven Queen. Raven's slightly goth-y, purple-and-black looks match what her role is supposed to be...but the ruffled skirt and the iPod-style purse she carries betrays a sensitive, kind-hearted lass with no desire to poison anyone. Her slightly wavy hair was, like Ashlynn's, easy to brush straight out of the box. She probably won't even need a wash. Her "ring" is attached to a chunky bracelet, which thankfully means there's no fear of it getting lost.

Started Mickey Mouse Clubhouse while I pulled Raven out. Minnie's nieces Millie and Melody make their first appearances on the regular Clubhouse show in "Minnie's Winter Bow-Show." Minnie and the gang will be having a bow fashion show to show off her wares. Minnie had said she'd play with the girls, but now she's too busy. They try to help, but they just make a mess. They accidentally take off in the Clubhouse hot air balloon. Minnie joins them. They get stranded up at the North Pole, but with a little help from Snow Fairy Clarabelle, they manage to find their way back in time for the show.

I would have watched more episodes, but the disc was skipping badly...and this DVD is brand new! I finally pulled it out. I can't believe what a mess it was! It was heavily scratched and dirty, and it probably hasn't been around for more than a week or two. I checked the Doc McStuffins disc, and it was in the same rough shape. I'll have to show these to the librarians next week. I don't think they'll be very happy.

Switched to Hercules as I made scrambled eggs with spinach, mushrooms, and cheese for dinner. Disney's hilarious version of Greek mythology came out in 1997. The title character is an awkward young man who feels he doesn't belong in the little town where he was raised. A trip to Zeus' temple reveals that he's the son of Zeus and Hera and was stolen from Mount Olympus as an infant. In order to regain his immortality, he has to train with gruff satyr Philoceltes (Danny DeVito) to become a true hero. Hades, King of the Underworld (a wonderful James Woods) doesn't like this one bit. He's hoping to take over Mount Olympus with the help of the Titans, but Hercules keeps barging into his plans. He finally sends Megara (Susan Egan), whom he controls, to find out what Hercules' weakness is, but she can't bring herself to hurt him. Hercules finally discovers that it takes more than strength to make a real hero - it takes a lot of heart, too.

Most of Disney's pure comedies (like Robin Hood and The Emperor's New Groove) tend to be underrated, and this one is no exception. If you don't go in expecting it to follow the original Greek and Roman stories to the letter, this is one of the funniest movies Disney ever made. James Woods loved doing Hades so much, he's played the character in most of his incarnations ever since, and it shows. He gets most of the best lines as the fast-talking god who wants to rule a lot more than dead souls. If you want to check out the lighter or lesser-known side of Disney and don't mind the loose myth adaptation, this is recommended and is a lot of fun.

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