Monday, May 07, 2018

All the Kingsmen's Horses

Began a beautiful, sunny morning with a couple of black-and-white shorts based around horse racing. "Porky and Teabiscuit" has the porcine farmer stuck with a skinny nag after he inadvertently buys him at an auction. He races him to get his father's money back, but it takes really loud noises to get this pony moving.

Mickey Mouse has a somewhat similar problem in "The Steeplechase"...but here, the horse is drunk rather than lame, and the last dollar of Minnie and an older friend is riding on their participation. Unfortunately, this one is marred by a few stereotypes, including what Mickey ultimately enters in the race.

Worked on writing after breakfast. Leia asks Yoda and Ahsoka about her father and how he ended up joining Palpatine. The Chancellor promised to help him save his wife from dying during his pregnancy...but Anakin finally realized after he killed Jedi counselor Mace Windu that he had no intention of doing so. Palpatine scarred his face and thought he'd killed him, but Anakin managed to escape. Obi-Wan was so angry that he wouldn't speak to his friend for months, but Padme proved to be more forgiving. They all ended up fleeing Palpatine's influence with Yoda and Bail and Breha Organa's help.

Broke at noon to do a few things around the apartment. First on the list was sweeping the porch. The fuzzy seed pods have finally started falling and making their usual yellow-green dusty mess. Swept them up as best I could, including climbing onto the blocked part around my bedroom and bathroom window that's sagging.

Had lunch, then made Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. Ran a few more racing-themed items while I worked. The Three Stooges are "Playing the Ponies" when they trade their restaurant for another non-starting nag. This time, what gets the horse moving is Curly's hot chili pepperinos!

Emilia and Jack learn a lesson about gambling in "A Horse of a Different Color," the first episode of the second season of Jack of All Trades. While they're making use of Jack's supposed "system" at the island's new track, Russian empress Caroline the Great threatens to blow them all sky-high if they don't find her prize race horse. Jack and Emilia do find it...but in the meantime, they've lost all their money. The duo finally enter it into the race themselves to get their own money back and expose the criminals.

The Monkees learn "Don't Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth" in an early first season episode. A little boy leaves his beloved horse with the guys. Not only does their landlord not allow animals, but former jockey Davy is the only one who really knows how to take care of it. Working for the farmer to earn the money for its keep only makes things worse. They finally agree to a race with another farmer to win the cash they need.

Put on a quick Pink Panther short as I got ready for work. "Pinto Pink" has him trying to grab a horse for a ride north. As with the similarly stubborn equine in "Yankee Doodle Pink," this horse just does not want Pink riding him, no matter how much he ties himself on.

Work was actually pretty quiet when I came in...but that changed quickly during rush hour. I got stuck in the register for almost an hour. We're still really short on help, especially in the morning and afternoons. Matters improved after my break. I spent the rest of my shift doing returns or rounding up carts outside.

Returned to sitcoms when I got home and had leftovers for dinner. Larry Appleton buys a racehorse cheap in "A Horse is a Horse," from the early sixth season of Perfect Strangers. Turns out there's a reason he got it a such a good price - it's dying. Balki hopes one of his Myposian concoctions will get it back on its feet.

Took a nice, soothing bath after dinner. Given how crazy things have been lately, especially at work, I really needed this. Kicked back, read that book of affirmations I bought a while back, and listened to 20's and 30's jazz.

Ended the night with Kingsman: The Golden Circle. Eggsy Unwin (Taran Egerton) is enjoying his new role as the head man of Kingsman, a British secret service agency, as well as his relationship with Princess Tilde of Sweden (Hanna Alstrom). His happiness is short-lived after he's attacked by Charlie (Edward Holcroft), who lost an arm and his voice in the previous film. He's not the only member of Kingsman being targeted. Every agent they have, along with their headquarters, are blown to smithereens except tech support man Merlin (Mark Strong) and Eggsy. Poppy Adams (Julianne Moore), the head of the world's biggest drug ring the Golden Circle, has infected all her drugs with a powder that makes one break out in a blue rash, then become paralyzed before death. Eggsy and Merlin track down their American counterparts the Statesmen to help. Their first partner, Tequila (Channing Tatum), is effected by the bad drugs and is replaced by the tougher Whiskey (Pedro Pascal). The Statesmen have also been able to revive Eggsy's dead mentor Harry (Colin Firth), but not his memory. After Tilde reveals that she's also effected by the drug, Eggsy has to work fast to revive his mentor's mind and find out where Poppy's keeping the antidote, before more lives are lost.

While most critics weren't that impressed, I thought this one was even better than the first movie. Moore's Poppy is a far more interesting and creative villain, and I like the idea of the Statesmen, cowboys who's front is a bourbon distillery, as the counterparts to the more refined Kingsmen. I'm not the only one who enjoyed it - this was a fairly big hit in early fall last year.

If you loved the first movie, this one is just as much fun...but do keep in mind that the body count and violence is even heavier and more stylized, with far more mayhem and creative ways of killing people. Definitely not for kids, but teens on up who love comic book mayhem or spy spoofs will really get a kick out of this series.

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