"You think they'll get this one? Think they'll get it? A little clue: check you calendar. Check your calendar on this one. Check your calendar, and then maybe you'll get the joke." - Tom, dropping some hints about his timely spin of "Taxman"
"Oh, there's many more things I've done, but, you know, I figured I'd start with that." -- Leon Carbone, purging the guilt about a $20 paper route theft
"Not even gonna say what it's a stain of, just trust me. It was gross." -- Tom, declining to reveal a civilian gamer's complete filth handle
"I'd be shootin' down the bad guys left and right, flying all over doin' loops." - Tom, touting his (real) fighter pilot skills following a brief tutorial
"What if that was Heaven? What if you passed away, right, and all of a sudden you realized Heaven was Ridgewood, N.J.?" -- Tom, asking a caller to consider the possibility that he's already living in the holiest tract of God's Country
"Mike says he wrote vampire books. He's disputing your claim that he didn't write a vampire book. Mike says he wrote a book called Bleh Bleh." - Tom, informing Bonnie about Mike's (mis)understanding of Christopher Buckley's bibliography
"Where will you get the nice food from? A different city?" - Tom, wondering where Stephen in Chicago will get the good eats to entice him for a visit
"I thought it was comin' back when he said that AriZona Iced Tea was healthy because it was from Arizona." - Weirder Jon, waiting for Petey to go on another Hot streak
"You know the Rolling Thunder Revue? Mike was in that. He played kungas." -- Tom, informing a Dylan enthusiast about Mike's role in the traveling caravan
"My hands!!!!!! My hands!!!!!! Ahhhhhhhhh!!!! I can no longer weave magic!!" -- A professional gamer, breaking his fall -- and shattering his fontasies -- after slipping outside a McDonald's
"Wouldn't a Thermos be on the ultimate hot streak and cold streak?" -- Tom, striking topical gold with a vacuum flask
"I'm looking forward to it because I'm gonna rip Dr. Pepper off so much with that." -- Tom, getting very thirsty for some Chinese Democracy
"USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA!" -- Tom, chanting for his country after a caller put the American dollar on a Cold streak in the international currency markets
"Wait, let me get this straight, you are DJ, yet you don't know who Black Sabbath is. Ok! Looks like I took you to school, no?" -- Newly-frocked Pablo Fontana, advising Tom on the value of the Ronnie James Dio era
"Well, you know, it gives me pleasure. It gives a lot of people various pleasures." -- Pablo Fontana, justifying his use of the controversial "apparatus"
"I think I know why. He is Nazi." - Pablo Fontana, speculating on the Pope's refusal to kiss the D.C. tarmac
"What about call screener Sherman? Will he be there? - Pablo Fontana, trying to line up guests for his four-hour Pancake Communion
"What is thaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat?" -- Pablo Fontana, requesting a definition of the term "ecumenical"
"Lot of people talked the s hit about tu." - Pablo Fontana, noting that many Newbridge parishioners criticized Tom while in his confession booth
"Look, Michael Jordan would have no idea who I am, but if he met me, he'd see it. He'd see the aura. He'd give me the nod." -- Tom, explaining that greatness recognizes greatness
"That's right. I was waiting for somebody to say that! Why do you think I even did this stupid topic?" -- Tom, rejoicing after Jason put The Best Show on an eight-year hot streak
Dead Child - "Screaming Skull"
( Click here to buy Attack)
Turbonegro - "Get It On"
( Click here to buy Apocalypse Dudes)
Void - "Ignorant People"
( Click here to buy Faith/Void/Faith)
The Faith - "Nightmare"
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The Tokeleys - "Mausoleum" (from Sons of Horus)
The Kyle Sowashes - "Korea"
( Click here to buy Yeah Buddy!)
Go Sailor - "The Boy Who Sailed Around the World"
( Click here to buy Go Sailor)
The Great Plains - "The Way She Runs A Fever"
( Click here to buy Length of Growth 1981-89)
Now is the time for us to gather together and celebrate those things that we like and think are fun:
- Dan McNamara says that PBS is handling the marketing campaign for his Redeeming Rainbow project. He thinks it's stupid, and Tom agrees. He GOMPs McNamara because he's not going to spend more time talking about something that its co-creator admits is stupid.
Tom doesn't think he can do the show tonight, but he will proceed with another installment because this radio king has not lost his crown. He hopes the courageous few who dare to call in the pre-topic portion realize that they are merging onto the highway to a danger zone where they only have 30 second to deliver "the goods." Tom welcomes the ABBA box back from its three-week vacation. He certainly missed his good buddy, but Mike wanted to permanently switch it out for a Procol Harum box set. Tom would not stand for that. He knows he can't go around the scary, flashing phone line. He has to go right through it.
- Leon Carbone calls to apologize for stealing from some people. Tom stops the clock to hear more about his criminal past. He also wonders if Leon is all there. Leon reveals that he is not. He confesses to stealing $20 when he covered for Matthew C.'s paper route while he was in the hospital for an appendix operation. Leon needed the money to buy a Harley-Davidson wallet. The theft occurred 20+ years ago, and it's been eating up Leon ever since. He says he doesn't really feel any better after admitting to the crime on the radio. Tom thinks he's marked because he did a bad thing and prescribes a good dose of humiliation. Leon says he's done many other unsavory things, but he wanted to start with this one. While he did feel like a bigshot walking around with that new wallet, it was not worth the years of torment it hath wrought.
Matthew acted like nothing was wrong aside from giving Leon some strange looks. After he moved away, Leon tried to get back in touch with him by using resources ranging from a P.I. to the Yellow/White Pages. Tom thinks a P.I. may be a bit excessive for a two-decade-old $20 infraction. Leon says he was a man on a mission to do the right thing, but Tom thinks he's doing the weird thing. At this point Tom suspects that Leon intended to call a Werner Herzog Dogmay 95 show on another station. He hopes Leon is sufficiently humiliated and ashamed by his actions. Leon says he's unemployed, which doesn't surprise Tom, and he's looking for work as a driver of
getaway cars delivery trucks. Tom thinks he's unemployable because the stink of untrustworthiness glows off him like an aura. He can't imagine anyone giving him the keys to a truck containing a payload. Tom believes that Leon is a shoegazer because he's afraid people will start seeing through his shady walk and talk. Tom doesn't hold anyone's gaze because he's highly intimidating and too cool for school. Leon says he will often set his eyes in a blank stare without making any eye contact. Tom says others would probably fear bodily injury if he did hold their gaze.
Tom wants Leon to obtain three $20 bills via legitimate means and put the cash towards a good cause as restitution for his past misdeed. Leon says he's donated $32,000, which he received from an inheritance, to charities such as Doctors Without Borders, the Council of Indian Nations, the Redd Kross, and his ill sister. Tom thinks it's time to put the H-D wallet situation behind him and forgives Leon to the tune of The Who's "A Quick One, While He's Away." Leon thinks he pulled a real lowlife move, and he's not sure that his generosity makes up for it. Tom is certain that any further attempts to contact Matthew would just spook him out because he's forgotten about the whole thing by now. He thinks Matthew probably learned to be more cautious because dirtbags often rum amok in this evil world, preying on people who are hospitalized. Leon says the paper he collected on was the Staten Island Advance. Since it's a horrible newspaper, Tom rules it a draw and GOMPs him. He felt like he was talking to Harry Dean Stant-ton, and he knows that's the correct pronunciation because HDS yelled at him when he said "Stanton" on the set of Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project. He applauds director John Landis for kicking off a documentary about a comedy legend with HDS playing his awesome harmonica solo.
With just 1/6th of the show gone, Tom feels like he needs a shower to remove the Leon Carbone grime. He wonders how many people Carbone has killed in a communal, prison shower via strangulation or soap-bar beatings. He puts the over/under at 3. Speaking of murders, Tom, acting on advice of his legal counsel, apologizes to the fine young man named Ross for threatening to impale his body on the Colgate Clock. Tom believes Ross is free to dislike the show. He's not even a fan of the show after the last call. In honor of Taxday, Tom proposes an evergreen topic to see which listener has gone the longest without filing. He allows the use of a fake name to avoid tipping off the authorities. Tom suspects Leon Carbone is the man to beat.
- Tom has previously mentioned his love-hate experience with the Gameplay HD network -- he thought watching other people play video games was the dumbest thing ever until he realized that he had been mesmerized by it for 25 minutes. Tom recently woke up at 5:30 a.m. because it was one of his training days, and he promptly sat down in front of the television with a dozen eggs and a glass. He tuned into the weird pre-The Today Show zone on NBC, but quickly moved on because Ann Curry and Natalie Morales had yet to boot the third-stringers trying to hold things down. He flipped over to Gameplay to find a 2-on-2 tournament for the fighter-pilot game, Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation. The finals pitted the winners of the civilian bracket against the winners of the military bracket. Tom reports that the civilians were extremely arrogant about their impending victory over actual Air Force officers who fly actual planes. The players took the stage wearing flight suits for their fake combat. (One hopes they were also strapped in and wearing helmets.) Tom is not suggesting that you have to worship the military, but he found the civilian behavior to be inappropriate.
As one might expect, the players opted for crazy handles instead of their given names. The civilian pair consisted of Adam "----- STAINS" Wheeler and Leslie "THEBOOGIEMAN83" Brown, both members of the Annihilation Aces squad. Tom declined to say the first part of Wheeler's handle because it was gross. The civilians prevailed and treated the military men like they were losers, offering meager handshakes and more taunts. Tom is not surprised they won because it's a video game instead of a real military mission. He was not impressed by the talk about how much work went into their tournament performance because they are home playing video games all day long, while their competitors are proudly serving their country on an Air Force base. Tom thought the civilian duo was acting like they were pilots from another division of the military that does not require active duty. One of the defeated military guys congratulated the civilians and suggested the result might be different if they ever entered the cockpit of a fighter jet. Tom says the civilians did not even notice the burn, preferring to take the position that the weak military smack talk was not cutting it compared to the miles they logged in the virtual airspace. Tom can't remember what the civilians did for a living, but the Best Buy sales floor seems a likely workspace. According to Kern's new publication Video Game Nasties, "S hart Stains" has been consulting with Tornado Todd on LifeChanges' forthcoming Pimp City IV: Pippin's Revenge.
Tom is very confident that he would have clobbered anyone in the field if he had 15 minutes of Ace Combat 6 practice. He also believes he could do loops and shoot down bad guys in a real plane after a 15-minute tutorial. Tom plans to strive towards becoming a member of the Blue Angels for the next chapter of his life. He doesn't think it would be too difficult to reach that level of aerial skill.
- Stuart evades the 30-second clock by announcing that he's been evading his taxes for six years. He initially blames his delinquency on schooling, working a little bit, not schooling, and not working, but he admits that he was really just confused about when he had to file. He decided it was easier to just not bother with it. Tom thinks it was the right decision. Stuart says he doesn't have "crap" to report, but he realizes he's playing with fire. He's not looking forward to the end of this story because he's pretty sure he was supposed to report his massive amount of student loans. Stuart says his mother didn't pay taxes for 20 years before finally coming clean to the IRS, aka the DC Snipers. She was ready for the guillotine, but the IRS did nothing. Stuart views his mother as a role model, giving him a free ride for another 14 years. Tom blesses and GOMPs him. He doesn't think paying taxes is a party, but he still does it.
Tom is reminded of an e-mail he once sent someone to get some feedback on something his accountant did. He called his accountant a bad name in this message. It got bounced back and forth, and he accidentally forwarded it to his accountant with the name-calling still present in the chain. Tom says he felt like a jerk on that one. The accountant responded by apologizing for Tom thinking that he was an FWD. Tom considers this incident one of his lowpoints, and another low is the straight-up flop of a show he's currently doing. He thinks he's been on a cold streak since the marathon. The pilot light is out. The callers stink. Tom turns his failure to ignite into tonight's topic(s):
1. If you had the world's biggest coil-action spring, who would you put atop that spring to launch into the ozone?
2. You have a shrink ray, which allows you to shrink anybody on Earth down to an inch. Who would you shrink?
These are not the actual topics. The real topic is: HOT Streaks/COLD Streaks. Tom wants to hear about the hottest of the hot and the coldest of the cold. He gives two examples:
HOT: Francis Ford Coppola in the early 1970s (The Godfather, The Conversation, The Godfather Part II)
Tom also wants to borrow a page from "WFMU's Prank Patrol" by finding the absolute least popular DVD in the Netflix inventory to have the FOT in various regions add it to their queueueueue and mark the sleeve. Ideally, the distribution warehouses would only stock one copy of the final selection. Tom thinks Strotesick is a candidate, but he wants to hear more ideas throughout the show. Maybe Monster-in-Law?
- Mike calls from Ridgewood, NJ, which Tom considers to be God's Country. Mike hopes to God that it's not the chosen land. Tom asks Mike to consider the possibility that when he dies he will realize that Heaven is actually Ridgewood, N.J. Mike says he'd wish for another chance to pass away. Harsh words! He heard the pro gaming chatter, so he wanted to mention that this past weekend the Meadowlands hosted a video game tournament called Loser Fest 2008. The action included
The CouchbreakersTeam Final Boss, a top-tier quartet comprised of Walshy, Ogre1, Ogre2 and Strongside (ages 19-23), defending their MLG Halo 3 title . Mike is not a member of the team, but he does know the guys. He says that Red Bull sponsored a nice afterparty. Tom, who had his own recent mutant encounters at the Meadowlands, can't imagine the sight of these gamers waddling around.
Mike says Final Boss has an MLG contract worth $250,000 whether they win or lose, and they win an additional $100,000/year in various pro tournaments. A gaming entrepreneur known as "Tsquared" just got sponsorship from Panasonic, and he also runs Gaming Lessons, which teaches kids how to play videogames for $110/hour. Tom's glad that Tsquared is contributing to the betterment of today's youth. Mike says Tsquared's exploits led to a front page feature story in the Wall Street Journal about a year ago. Tom is surprised his image fit on the front page and wonders how many dots were required to sketch out his likeness. Mike confirms that Tsquared is a big guy, but he's fit because professional gamers have to be marketable. Tom is glad that he had no idea about that stuff because the world has gone topsy-turvy is if that is true. Mike points out that when Tom was growing up most kids favored traditional outdoor recreational like baseball and football. He asks Tom how many kids (in the 7-15 age range) he now knows who don't play video games. Tom says six of the nine youngsters he knows are not gamers. Despite Tom's anecdotal evidence to the contrary, Mike says he's noticed a trend towards most kids playing video games. Tom thinks this shift is like the cultural wasteland depicted in Mike Judge's Idiotocracy.
Mike asks Tom about the difference between video games and chess. Tom thinks chess is also stupid. Mike points out that it does require players to think and develop strategies. Tom says he's never played the game, but if he played for two days he guarantees that he would be winning awards like chessmaster Bobbie Fischer. Mike says occasional Wizards guard and pro blogger Gilbert Arenas is one of the chief financial backers of Final Boss and writes them a check every other day. Tom thinks it's fantastic that society continues to move closer to the edge of the cliff. Tom gets rid of Mike because he was making him sick to his stomach. He compares Arenas to a gunner like "Pistol" Pete Maravich, racking up big offensive stats but never winning anything. I was really hoping that August called to join the gaming discussion.
- Casey calls from Astoria, but he has to wait for Tom to finish one of his signature moves: getting over his anger at Mike's video game riffs. Tom thinks it was clear that he wanted everyone to know that he was tight with the Final boss dudes. He predicts that 50 years from now one will have to explain whether they play video game baseball or the brand of baseball that requires actual leg movement. Tom points out that real baseball is already lazy -- standing around and sitting -- but it's still too active for the gaming youth of today and the future. Casey takes the bat for the topic.
COLD: The Rolling Stones post-Some Girls
Tom thinks Casey is an exemplary, first-time caller and logs his name for ROY consideration. As we approach the end of Q1, the crop is very thin after the Steve from NoHo flameout. Tom says he would have a hard time giving Julie from Cincinnati the honor because she's a
little lot scary. Casey's humble approach to his chances and a polite signoff confirm he's a legit contender. Will there be joy in FOTville come year's end?
- Brian calls from Columbus, OH, home of The Great Plains, who are doing it again. He laments that the band probably won't play there because none of the locals attend rock 'n roll music shows. Tom will get to see them open for Big Dippers later this month.
COLD: Arrow Smith's post-Run-D.M.C. "Walk This Way" collaboration "comeback" years - present.
Tom is on board with this Hot/Cold hybrid. Brian thinks it's a bit sad that the band sells more records now then when they were good. Tom reminds him that nobody sells more records now. He thinks they are Good Enough Guys who earned some cash by swindling a dimwitted public during a late-career surge after delivering a string of albums that people will always remember. Brian takes solace in knowing that the band made more good records than a lot of bands. Lighthouse Confession: I've always been partial to the Crespo-heavy Rock in un Hard Place, and I think Honkin' On KTBobo can hold its own with their early work. I also once placed Permanent Vacation as the #3 album of 1987 (behind Appetite and Hysteria, just edging out Pride and Scum) in a year-end list I submitted to Forced Exposure. It was not published because Jimmy Johnson and Byron Coley are dirtbags. The official explanation was that I got bumped by last-minute entries from Trotsky Icepick's Kjehl Johansen and Nurse With Wound's Heman Pathak. Whatevs. At least Coley later wrote a glowing review of my "Mo Vaughn" 7" (1993, Taang!), saying it was the best thing Paul Q. Corduroy ever produced.
- A caller blasts Tom's ears and wants to request a track, but he starts stammering when asked for the specifics. Tom Jameses James before he could launch into his little song and dance routine. He tells the little creep to go soak his toupee. Has James been exiled to The Lounge?!
- A caller can't believe that Tom was talking to the guys in Final Boss. (He wasn't.) He thinks it's amazing. Goodbye!
Tom is annoyed by how the supposedly awesome CGI in the prequels already looks like something any kid could do at home. After a brief window of awe, technology has already caught up. Tim finds a lot more charm in the dated effects of the original trilogy becase they created a sense of wonderment about how they pulled it off. The more recent films were clearly just the result of Lucas barking orders at designers about adding additional horns to characters for the eventual action figure. Tom agrees that Lucas let everyone down, but he thinks we can all move past it because we are no longer children. Tim has successfully replaced Star Wars with the exciting The Venture Bros.
- Samir in Florida calls as Tom continues to piece together the first half-decent show since the marathon. He tries to cheer Tom up by saying that they've all been at least half-decent. Samir takes down a sacred cow with his COLD streak: Robert Deniro. He argues that the actor hasn't generated any heat since appearing in John Frankenheimer's 1998 actioner Ronin. Tom wants Samir to take him on a tour of Deniro's IMDB page so he can assess the temperature of his recent movie roles.
- Analyze This (COLD)
- Flawless (
- Rocky y Bullwinkle(COLD)
- Men of Honor (COLD diving picture)
- Meet the Parents (COLD)
- 15 Minutes (COLD K-Dog!)
- El Score (COLD)
- Showtime (COLD despite lighting it up with Eddie Murphy)
- City by el Sea (COLD despite being shot in Asbury Park)
- Analyze That (COLD)
- Godsend (COLDest of the COLD during the COLD streak )
- Shark Tale (voice) (COLD)
- The Bridge of San Luis Rey (COLD)
- Hide y Seek (COLD, features spooky kid)
- Arthur y the Invisibles (voice) (COLD)
- El Good Shepherd (also directed) (COLD)
- Stardust (COLD)
Tom thanks Samir for a top-notch call and appreciates his wishes for a good week. He commends Samir for caring about what happens to him after the show, unlike the rest of the vultures who want to get their thrills for three hours on Tuesday night and then put him in cryogenic storage until the next show.
- Abraham from Boston serves up a HOT one:
Richard Kind 1992-2002 The Simpsons from 1991 through 1997 (end of season 8). He thinks it was unbeatable television during this run, boasting a superstar writing staff that included people like Greg Daniels, who is now the showrunner for the U.S. adaptation of The Office. Abraham noticed a gradual decline in quality, and he eventually stopped watching. Tom thinks it's reasonable to move on from a long-running show if it no longer brings it. Abraham says he first got into the show when he was little, and those episodes still bring him laughs and smiles now. Tom's happy for him because it's a hard to find beauty in this hard (and sick and sad) world we live in. He wishes there was a song that encapsulated how wonderful the world can be.
Early pre-visualization footage from David Fincher's adaptation of Christopher Buckley's best-selling vampire novel
- FOT fave Bonnie from Georgia is ready to contribute to the topic after getting some guidance from the wonderful call screener, Klaus. Tom likes him and his good heart. Bonnie agrees that he's a nice person. Tom whispers that Rudolph is making him say positive things.
Bonnie isn't quite sure if she's on a hot streak of selecting his awesome books, or if he is on a hot streak of writing them. Mike begins ruining his nice-guy reputation by claiming that Buckley writes in the thriller genre and penned a vampire book titled Bleh Bleh. Bonnie no longer thinks that Mike is a kindhearted man. Tom says he's just misinformed. Bonnie says she needs to tell Tom about two horrible things:
1. She will be gone all summer working as a counselor at a camp, which will prevent her from listening to The Best Show live. Tom says she will be missed. Bonnie knows it will be hard to get through the week, but she thinks she can do it.
2. She ended her stint as the tambourine player for the praise band On Purpose because it was no longer worth the drama that came with it. Bonnie says the band is still thriving and probably will not look for another tambourine player. Tom hopes they don't because Bonnie is irreplaceable.
Bonnie promises to make a final pre-camp call. She wishes Tom a good night and asks him to tell Mike the same. Tom relays the message, and Mike responds with "What's it to you?," indicating the Buckley-based Bonnie rift is something to keep an eye on.
- The art-tist known as Scott T has a COLD streak: Home Box Office's original programming. Tom's surprised because the network will unfurl a hot new season of the Weird-O-Wood laffer Entourage in September. Scott will give him that, but other than Big Love, HBO is hurting from the loss of Rome, Deadwood,
Curb, The Wire, and The Sopranos in the last couple of years. Tom reminds him about the buzz surrounded the animated version of John from Cincinnati. Scott says he heard that the kid from MTV was up for a voice role, but Tom says this is a rare project that is not attached to Andy Milonakis. However, he can confirm that Spielberg is reshooting all of Shia LaBoof's scenes in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with Milonakis as Indy's new greaser sidekick.
Scott offers a quick apology on behalf of Renee, the Australia-based cartoonist/illustrator who was GOMPed last week for potty mouth. He says she is deeply embarrassed and was confused about the family-friendly format. Tom accepts it because Scott has clout around here.
- Connor calls from D.C., so Tom wonders if he's inside the Dischord House. He says he is, then he isn't, and then it becomes clear that he has no idea what Tom is talking about. Tom GOMPs him for being from D.C. and not knowing about this historic residence. He recommends that Connor enroll in local rock school with a curriculum of Faith/Void and High Back Chairs. Learn!
- Scott calls from Birmingham, AL, and Tom thinks he can probably guess what he's required to ask him about. Scott guesses that it involves the level of Ku Klux Klan activity in his area, but Tom was simply going to ask him about the weather. Scott says that winter is back after a few weeks of summery temperatures. He's wearing shoes, socks, and three thermal robes to keep warm, and he could also battle the conditions with the lifelong HOT streak of music from Billy Childish. Scott says if you see his name on the record, you know it's a quality product. Tom agrees 100% because you don't have to worry about Childish pulling a nonsense overload like Sgt. Pepper's on his unsuspecting fans. He picks Childish as the hottest hot streak of the night. Scott thinks Woody Allen's COLD streak may be as long as Childish's hot streak. Tom is surprised that that his films are even exhibited in Alabama. Scott says that Annie Hall, which was released to the rest of the country in 1977, just hit local theaters. Tom assumes it's paired with Witless Relocation as part of a double feature. Scott says it's also on a bill with Delta Farce. Tom doesn't think that is still in theaters, but Scott assures him that it's still playing there. Touche!
- Herbie in Philadelphia calls while skating on thin ice for his previous attempt to take over the show with a topic about first-world problems. He's ready to leave that in the past and adhere to Tom's topic, which he shortens to just "Hottest Hot." Tom's not into that, but Herbie says it was so hot that he had to get it out quickly. Tom gives him a pass and mentions that a Herbie fan sent him an e-mail request to lay off a bit. Herbie's HOT streak is 99 Records, especially his all-time favorite, "Stretch" by Maximum Joy. He also notes the fine work from ESG, Liquid Liquid, Bush Tetras, and Glen Branca. Tom thinks Herbie is on the road to recovery and laughs when he hangs up as Herbie was still speaking. It never gets old.
- Stephen in Chicago calls to represent a city currently entangled in a marathon love-making session with The Best Show. He says he was shocked at how many people from Chicago did the right thing by pledging to WFMU last month. Tom thinks he needs to travel to Chicago to meet his adoring fans. Stephen promises Tom a good time with some nice food. Tom asks him if he will acquire the nice food from a different city. Stephen says Tom can find some nice vegetarian fare at Soul Veg and a killer,
tall bike-friendly establishment called The Handlebar. Tom confirms that the employees do not sport handlebar mustaches.
HOT: Joel and Ethan Coen (aka "The Coen Brothers") for their run from Blood Simple (1985) through The Man Who Wasn't There (2001)
COLD (via his girlfriend): Metallica (The Black Album - present, including the embarrassing flameout documented in Some Kind of Monster )
Tom believes that heavy metal music is for children and dumb adults who still get through life by cranking up "Master of Puppets." He has had his fill of the band's thrashy rage. Stephen quotes a lyrical gem from St. Anger's lead single "Frantic": "My lifestyle determines my deathstyle!" Needless to say, that will be the last time the band collaborates with Robert Hunter. Tom gives a thumbs down to the entire genre. Stephen reveals his alternative HOT streak in case Tom disagreed with the Coens: the first five Can albums. He boldly declares that this the hottest streak of any Krautrock band of the time. Tom says he is not unwrong about that.
- Jeff from Springfield, MO, wonders if Jerry Seinfeld takes his HOT/COLD transition personally because he's always played himself. Apparently Jeff forgot about his scene-stealing turn as "Network Rep" in The Ratings Game, now running exclusively on Shout! every Wednesday at 3:35 a.m. Tom points out that Seinfeld left the game post-Seinfeld, occasionally surfacing for an afternoon of work on 30 Rock as a break from promoting Bee Movie or defending his wife's cookbook.
- Derrick calls from Detroit, but he is not Derrick Coleman, nor is he a particularly big fan of Derrick Coleman. He has also never shopped at Coleman's SNYX Sneaker Studio, which is located in Auburn Hills Commons next to where the Faygo Hut was before Violent J drank it. Derrick has a HOT streak: the Wu-Tang Clan from Enter el Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) through the first round of solo albums, including Ironman, Tical, Only Built For Cuban Linx ..., Liquid Swords, and Return to el 36 Chambers: El Dirty Version. While it's been hit and miss in subsequent rounds, Derrick did enjoy the Wu-Tang Clan's 8 Diagrams, released last December. Tom is, of course, a Ghostface enthusiast, but he's not a big fan of Bulletproof Wallets or his latest release, El Big Doe Rehab.
Derrick says he definitely prefers El Pretty Toney Album and Fishscale. He downloaded More Fish, but he never listened to it because it seemed like it was just scraps. Tom recommends checking it out. For his COLD streak, Derrick summons the courage to cast a chill on Uwe Boll's entire icky oeuvre of video-game adaptations. He admits to never seeing a Boll film, and The Best Show judge strikes this entry from the record.
- Weirder Jon from Maplewood suggests that Ghostface's Apatow-like rate of production might be affecting the quality of some of his records. Tom urges Ghost to ease up on the gas pedal a bit. WJ thanks Tom for reading the entirety of his epic fan-fiction piece, Where Turkeys Dare, a riveting tale of an attempt to rescue Bob Saget from the fires of The Hate Pit. Tom gives other listeners the greenlight to try to write their own fan-fiction, which could lead to a new contest if he ever decides to end the Video & Art contest that began in early 2007. And ... it's ova! Tom ends the contest right now.
1. Neil Numberman - The Best Show Poster
2. John K. and Brian M. (and TLS?) - Rambocky
3. Eryc Why - "School Bus"
4. Kibblesmith - "Tom Hates Jokes"
5. KickTheBobo and Dorvid - "Scharpling Sings!"
6. Gregg Schigiel - "Super Hero Harvey"
7. Emily and KickTheBobo - "Best Show Book of Memories"
8. Chris V. - "Tom vs. Everyone"
I'd like to give Sploops, the Master of MS Paint, an honorable mention for his nice work.
Tom laments that Petey no longer contributes artwork to the program and recalls the HOT streak of his early years. WJ says he thought Petey was about to catch fire again when he recently remarked that AriZona Iced Tea was healthy because it was from Arizona. The fan-fiction contest is now in session. It will end sometime in 2011.
- Colin in Los Angeles says he's a little bummed that Tom didn't mention his video contest entry, but he spoke a bit too soon because Tom was about to add the awesome "Rock 'N' Roll Dreams'll Come Through" to the winners lineup. Colin thinks everyone who entered is a winner. He also thinks that Robert Altman was on a HOT streak in the 1970s, directing a string a masterpieces, such as MASH, Nashville, McCabe & Mrs. Miller, 3 Women, The Long Goodbye, and Brewster McCloud. Unfortunately, Bob went on a 30-year COLD streak with his next 61 snoozefests. Tom says he likes Altman to a degree, but his films don't make him get up and do a dance. My favorite late-period Altman is the underrated gyno romcom, Dr. T & the Women, which confirmed my theory that if you cast Kate Hudson, Shelley Long, and Tara Reid in the same film, you will get very good results.
- Listener T from Los Angeles says that Pixar Animation Studios is on an unbroken HOT streak. Tom wonders if they can keep it going this June with the release of WALL-E. LT thinks it looks pretty good. He thinks Walt Disney Animation Studios has been on a COLD streak since Emperor's New Groove (2000), especially their weak CGI efforts like Chicken Little and Meet the Robinsons. Tom thinks LT is dead-on with his entries.
Tom starts yawning because Starbucks was out of venti cups, and he had to settle for Timmy von Trimble thimble of coffee. Tom thinks a barista should have driven to another Starbucks three blocks away and picked up a stash of 25 more cups.
- Supercaller Erika from Baltimore thinks that MTV has been on a COLD streak in the past decade aside from Human Giant and a few other bits of programming . Tom mentions that the H-man, his radio rival, is a featured performer in tonight's season finale. Call screener Maxwell hands Tom a piece of paper to remind him about yet another contest winner: Emily and KickTheBobo's "Scharpling on ... Impudence!". KTB earns the hat trick, making this contest his Titanic, if that doomed steamship had sprouted wings to avoid its iceberg-induced sinkout.
- Rory from Philadelphia takes a break from listening to Electric Love Muffin to contribute Bob Pollard's HOT streak from the mid-1990s, including Bee Thousand, Alien Lanes, Under the Bushes Under the Stars, a billion EPs, and assorted songs, right up to the present. Tom will take it. Rory returns to Neil Young for his COLD streak throughout the 1980s. He cites the subpar Old Ways, Everybody's Rockin', and Life as examples, although Tom likes all of those records. He's also a fan of Landing On Water, especially the track "Hippie Dream."
Rory recommends El Pink Floyd y Syd Barrett Story for The Best Show Netflix project because he's waiting to receive an elusive copy from the warehouse in Seattle. Tom asks Rory to log onto his Furnstein FOT account to start a thread so people can vote on the Netflix options. He did it! Furnstein considers the Kevin Allin documentary Hated, but he suspects some creep in Arizona will never return their only copy of it.
- 2007 ROY Eddie comes in with a swagger to propose an underrated HOT streak: The Kinks' 1965 to 1971 run of El Kink Kontroversy, Face to Face, Something Else by El Kinks, El Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, Arthur (Or el Decline y Fall of el British Empire), Lola versus Powerman y el Moneygoround, Part One, and Muswell Hillbillies. Tom approves of all of those records. Eddie thought they started to lose it with the Preservation albums. Tom likes Part 1, but he can't abide by Part 2. Eddie and Tom agree that Everybody's in Show-Biz, Soap Opera, Schoolboys in Disgrace, and Sleepwalker (a couple of good tracks) are not too hot. After making a comeback of sorts with Low Budget, they cooled off again with Give el People What They Want and Word of Mouth, which led off with "Do It Again." Tom loves the fact that Eddie does it again every time he calls.
Eddie's COLD streak is the last, largely-uninspired 30 years of Hunter S. Thompson's writings. Tom knows what he means, although he thinks there is still some stuff worth reading. Eddie closes with two quick sporting HOT streaks: the Boston Celtics during the Bill Russell era and John Wooden's run of 10 national championships in his final 12 seasons at UCLA. Tom's on board with those, but he's a bit confused by Eddie putting the Chicago Cubs on a COLD streak. Eddie claims the Cubs haven't won a World Series since 1908, but Tom is pretty sure that they won it all in 1999. He checks online and confirms that the Sam E. Sosa-led team defeated the Yankees in five games. Eddie says he must have missed that one. He gave it a nice try, but even Eddie can't get 'em all.
- Charlie in Austin gets swept back into the video game discussion before he can address the topic. Tom apologizes for going back an hour, but he wants to know if Charlie has heard of these "superstars" making the rounds on the pro circuit. Charlie was not familiar with these crettens. Tom can't shake the thought of these gamers, and he doubts that they are really physically fit because their trips to the gym probably just involve thumb workouts for better controller handling. Tom thinks the best you can hope for with these guys is to have them slip as they exit a McDonald's and meet one of two undesirable fates: totally eating it on their face or breaking their fall with their hands, thus damaging their only moneymaker. He imagines the fallen gamers crying out in pain as they realize they will no longer be able to weave their magic. Tom says he doesn't really wish pain on anyone, but he believes that a young person making lots of money (and immediately burning through it) playing video games could benefit from a dose of harsh reality. He considers entering this world to get a piece of the action. Charlie suggests taking up Donkey Kong like the nerds in King of Kong. Tom wants to talk to Billy Mitchell about this.
M.I.A. stinks up the stage on Saturday Night Live!
Charlie proceeds with his problematic HOT/COLD streak: Mathangi "Maya" Arulpragasam. You probably know her by the stage name M.I.A., and Charlie thinks her recordings have been hot stuff. However, he heard that her live performances, including a recent appearance on Saturday Night Live, are not strong. Tom tells Charlie that M.I.A. has never been the musical guest on SNL. Charlie says she was on "some show." Tom GOMPs him for operating with a faulty playbook and trying to throw M.I.A. under the bus despite not knowing what he's talking about.
- Emma calls from a chilly-for-Spring Toronto and asks Tom how things are going in N.J. Tom is surprised by this thoughtful query and asks call screener Jor-El if anyone has done this in the preceding weeks and months. The answer: No one! Tom thanks Emma for her good manners. She has some first-call nerves, but Tom tells her to relax because she is off to an auspicious debut. Emma explains that she was headed to bed because she had nothing to contribute to the topic, but her dad came up with something. Tom questions the decision to retire for the evening because she's in the same time zone. Emma says it's a school night, and she has to rise at the ridiculous 6:30 a.m. to allow for enough time to eat breakfast, shower, and hop on the TTC for an hour commute. Tom has been put in his place!
Emma's dad put the rock group Guns N' Roses on a HOT/COLD streak. She was a bit reluctant to share his entry because she is not well-versed in the band's history and temperature changes, but she was able to do some quick Wikipedia research while on hold. Emma says she discovered that Dr. Pepper recently offered every American citizen a free can of its sodey if the long-gestating Chinese Democracy is finally released in 2008. She notes the two exceptions: original GNR guitar hero Slash and onetime GNR v2.0 shredder Buckethead. Emma thinks the exclusion is a little mean and judgmental. (Axl recently announced that he will share his Dr. Pepper with Buckethead since some of his performances will appear on the final version of the album.) Tom's not too concerned because he bets the two musicians can afford to buy their own refreshments. He is rooting for the release because he loves Dr. Pepper so much. Emma wonders how the company will keep track of all the GNR prize redemptions. Tom is getting ready to rip Dr. Pepper off in a big way.
He plans to tour all of the local 7-11 outlets with a fake mustache, beard, and a stash of crazy hats in his car like O.J. racing down the freeway in his Ford Bronco to elude the LAPD. Tom will also employ a variety of accents. If Das Sieben Und Der Elf is participating in this offer, he will have to be at the top of his game to swindle Werner and Rutager. Emma suggests putting pins in a local map to avoid a potentially disastrous double dip. Tom tells Emma about an American holiday called "Halloween." Emma says it sounds vaguely familiar. When Tom was a kid he was the master of scoping out the house with the good stuff and making repeat visits. He says that while most people carried a bag of candy, he had a bag full of costumes, such as a reversible, multicolor ghost sheet and a pirate ensemble with a shifting eyepatch to confuse the gullible homeowners. Tom would put on a fake beard to achieve a Pirates of the Caribbean look.
Emma is surprised that Tom had PotC when he was a kid. Tom wonders how old Emma think he is. Emma says she heard he was 64 years old, and Tom is quick to point out that he's going to be 64 this year. He informs Emma that the recent Johnny Depp PotC trilogy was a remake of the 1950s original (one of the first color films) with a superstar cast: future President Ronald Reagan, Cary Grant, Humphrey Bogart, and Oliver Hardy. Stan Laurel auditioned for a part, but lost out to Budd Abbott. Lou Costello was too busy to do the film. Tom mentions that Laurel & Costello teamed up for their own film project, but he can't recall the title because he wasn't a big Costello fan. Tom asks Emma if she's ever heard the famous "Who's on First?" routine. She thinks it's hilarious. (No she doesn't.) Tom bids her goodnight so she's not late for school tomorrow. He thinks he found another new ROY contender. Another T-Dot Supercaller in the making? The Canadians are coming! Stay tuned.
- Frank in Weehawken grabs his notes because he wants to sound professional when he's on the air. Tom loves the new breed of caller who comes prepared, exhibits good manners, and generally just goes with the fun flow. He denounces the rude batch of callers from the previous administration -- the "Lauries of the world" who only care about themselves. (Laurie vigorously objected to this charge on the FOT chat.) Tom gives Frank permission to proceed with his HOT streak: Apple, Inc. for the past decade. Tom thinks the ultra-thin MacBook Air is one of the company's rare flops because he has no interest in slipping a computer inside an envelope. He also points out that there are still many places that still lack WiFi connectivity. Frank doubts this is much of a problem for Tom because he likely stays at AAA hotels. Tom informs him that hotels are generally rated according to a star system. Frank then remembers that AAA is an automobile association that gives him a discount at low-end
hmotels favored by assassins like Anton Churg and those looking to hide suitcases of money in the air ducts.
Frank is afraid that Tom will take offense to his COLD streak: terrestrial radio. Tom gets angry ("How dare you!"), but he doesn't really care. Frank's second COLD streak is sales of recorded music. Tom erupts again ("How dare you!") because he believes that is inaccurate. He changes his mind and says that Frank is absolutely right about the sharp decline in recent years. Franks also thinks obscure pop singer Britney Spears is on a COLD streak.
- Kevin in Brooklyn makes up for Connor's lack of D.C. knowledge by awarding a HOT streak to the great Fugayzee Limousine Co., from "Waiting Room" all the way through The Argument, their last album before putting the fleet on an indefinite hiatus. He adapts his entry into a career-spanning HOT streak for Ian Mackaye, including his pre-Fugayzee work in Untouchables (actually featured Ian's brother, Alec) and Minor Threat and weird side-projects like Egg Hunt. Tom assumes that Kevin heard the surprising news that Minor Threat are definitely reforming to play the Summer Rock 'N Roll Pizza Parade Tour (also featuring Earth, Wind & Fire, The Rubinoos, and Miles Davis) with session percussionist Ray Cooper replacing original drummer Brendan Canty. Kevin doesn't believe it, but Tom tells him that he read it today on Pitchfork. He's depressed because he had a lot of respect for their resistance to reform. Kevin puts Billy Corgan on a COLD streak, but he gives him a break by marking it at the post-Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness era. He was tempted to start it with Siamese Dream. Tom gives thumbs down to Billy Corgan and Kevin.
- Dave in Ithaca, N.Y. via Mountain Lakes, N.J., thinks Bob Dylan was on a HOT streak with his string of consecutive albums from the early 1960s through the mid-1970s, starting with El Freewheelin' Bob Dylan. Tom knows that Another Side of Bob Dylan followed, but he's not sure if Desire was after that. Mike, resident Best Show Dylan scholar, confirms that it was and helps Tom list the rest of Dave's streak:
- Bringing It All Back Home
- Highway 61 Revisited
- Knocked Out Loaded
- Dylan y The Dead (live)
- Blonde on Blonde
- Shot of Love
- John Wesley Harding
Tom lets Dave in on a little-known piece of Mike's bio: he played the kungas for the Rolling Thunder Revue. Dave wants to hear more, but Tom knows that Mike doesn't want him to talk about his days in the caravan. (Hint: Scarlet Rivera and some 'ludes). Someone on the chat mentions that Mike forgot about Self Portrait, which was released within Dave's hot streak parameters. Dave isn't sure what the problem is because he doesn't think it's a bad album. Tom asks him if he's talking to someone else at the same time. He suggests giving the album another listen and then redrawing the Dylan hot streak. Dave's COLD streak is the sucky American dollar. Tom starts chanting "USA!" because he is a Proud Patriot.
- Eric in Amsterdam says rock star Ted Leo's show last weekend in Dublin did nothing to cool off the HOT streak of his last three albums: Living with el Living, Shake el Sheets, and Hearts of Oak. Tom thinks Eric needs to add The Tyranny of Distance to complete the heave ho four in a row. Eric promises to revisit the record to give it his proper attention. He says Ted and his band brought a lot of energy to a less-than-capacity Sunday night crowd. Big Steve was so into it that he drilled a hole in his drum head, causing Ted to fill the repair delay with some solo acoustic tunes that did nothing to stop the momentum. At the end of the show, Ted came back out with just a piece of paper to ask the audience to let him sing a song (possibly "Óró sé do bheatha 'bhaile") in the Irish language. Tom identifies this language as English. Eric claims that the Irish have their own language, and Tom wants him to stop making things up. Eric thinks that Ted could confirm this, but Tom and Ted had a falling out and are no longer on speaking terms. The crowd was hesitant to let Ted perform in their notoriously difficult native tongue, but they started fist pumping after he nailed it. Tom looks forward to hearing Ted do a song in American on his next stateside tour.
- Mark from Livingston thinks Harold Ramis was on a HOT streak with The National Lampoon Radio Hour, SCTV (early years), Animal House, Meatballs, Caddyshack,
Stripes, Ghostbusters, and Back to School. Tom strikes Stripes and GOMPs Mark for including it.
- A caller with what appears to be a Spanish accent offers another HOT streak: Heaven y Hell, Mob Rules, and Live Evil. Tom's not sure what band released those albums. The caller wants make sure he's clear on what just happened: Tom is a DJ who is not familiar with Black Sabbath. He thinks he just took Tom to school via the band's 1980-1982 material. Tom points out that the hot trio is from the Ronnie James Dio-era of Sabbath, which is not his favorite run from the band. The caller thinks the often overlooked period should count for something because it had a huge impact on Greg Ginn and his com ... com ... compatriots in Black Flag. Tom is willing to accept that these Sabbath records had an influence on the evolution of their hardcore sound.
The caller also wants to rrrratchet up the previous Dylan entry for his COLD strrrreak: Empirrrre Burlesque, Knocked Out Loaded, and the extremely chilly Down in el Groove. Tom forgot about the latter record, which contains "Silvio", a track Dylan co-wrote with longtime Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter, who recently played a show at Club Pizzazz in Newbridge. Tom thinks Dylan really lost his way during that stretch. The caller does think "Ugliest Girl in el Mundo" is an interesting track because it features Steve Jones y Paul Simonon from The Clash.
Tom thinks he recognizes the caller's voice, but he can't put a name to it. The caller is certain that Tom knows him because he's spoken to him several times and provided much spiritual guidance. It's Bishop Pablo Fontana, the self-proclaimed pop-culture pontiff who called last May to discuss his plans for the first papal visit in Newbridge history. He's calling tonight to ask Tom for a favor because he lost his "in" with Pope Benedict XVI after his recent scandal. Fontana hopes that Tom doesn't make him explain the details of his transgression. Tom recalls that last week Pudge referenced Fontana's use of a weird "apparatus," which appeared to be a supercharged version of the device that got Judge Davies disbarred. Fontana objects to the idea that it is weird equipment and asks Tom not to judge him. He says that Tom is not allowed to judge him because he judges Tom. Fontana corrects himself because he could now only judge Tom if he was reinstated into the church. He claims that he got frocked for using the apparatus, but Tom says the correct term for the dismissal is defrocked. Fontana doesn't seem to buy it and notes that he's currently wearing a smock because he's doing some painting.
While Tom characterizes the apparatus uproar as a "strange situation," Fontana says it gave him pleasure. He mentions that the apparatus gives various pleasures to a lot of people. He says he'd be glad to give Tom a demonstration because he's always looking to turn more people onto said pleasures. Tom does not immediately accept the offer, having already declined Pudge's offer to send him a .jpg of the apparatus. Fontana says he's basically become "persona au gratin" from the Catholic Church. Tom tells him the correct term is persona non grata. Fontana wants to know what that is. Tom says that "au gratin" refers to a food technique. Fontana wants to take the debate to call screener Rrrricardo. Tom tells him that his name is Mike. Fontana disagrees. Mike agrees that "au gratin" is a French culinary preparation, while Fontana was attempting to use the Latin phrase translating to "an unwelcome person." He accepts the correction because you learn something new every day. Regardless of the terminology for his excommunication, the church has made it clear that they don't want him anymore.
However, Fontana still wants to deliver on his promise to give the Pope an iPod. He doesn't divulge the final playlist, but as of last May he had loaded it with Newbridge bands (Mother 13, The Hey Whoah, Barbershop Sweat, I-ron's Reggae Challenge, The Gas Stations Dogs, and even White Tyger) and planned to include papal-themed music, such as most of The Smoking Popes' Born To Quit and "When In Rome" by Rocket from the Crypt. Fontana also hoped that Tom could work his magic on Yo La Tengo to secure an .mp3 of the band doing a musical version of Sam Kinison's "Robo-Pope" or a cover of "Disco Pope" by The Prats. Fontana says he was a bit miffed by the Pope's failure to kiss the tarmac upon touching down in D.C. earlier today. He was was put off by his decision to bypass the tradition of his predecressors. Tom asks Fonanta if the Pope provided any explanation for skipping the standard smooch. Fontana thinks he knows the reason: he is Nazi. Tom doesn't necessarily agree with Fontana's assessment, but he was not a fan of the decision to elect a Pope who had a questionable past. Fontana asks Tom if he's referring to the rumors that the Pope has spank mags in his proverbial closet. Tom says he has no knowledge of the Pope's predilection for pornographic periodicals. Fontana says everyone was talking about it. Tom wants to move on.
Fontana was very excited about getting the Pope to visit Newbridge so he could bless the sinkhole that has become one of the central issues of the political season. Since that trip is not on his itinerary, he was hoping that Tom could figure out a syrup tissues way to get to him. Tom believes that Fontana was attempting to use the word "surreptitious." Fontana says it's two words: syrup y tissues, which you use to blow your nose. Tom says it's definitely the single word meaning to do something in a secretive manner. Fontana tells Tom that he cannot correct him. He wants Tom to ask call screener Benji to find out why. Tom calls out to Mike, who Fontana thinks might be Benji's assistant. Tom says Mike is the only other guy in the studio. Fontana assumes it is Mike's first night on the job, but Tom tells him that Mike has been the call screener for awhile. Fontana thinks it is best to possibly be moving on.
He has some big news to announce if Tom is ready for it. Fontana makes sure that Tom is strapped in and helmeted. Fontana wants to know what color is helmet. Tom's not sure because he put on his usual figurative helmet. Fontana requests a description of the safety strap. He informs Tom that he was basically lying to God about the fake helmet, and it's going to cost him. Tom says he's willing to take his chances. Fontana reveals that he is tossing his papal beenie into el ring for the Mayubernatorial contest in Newbridge. He tells Tom that he will hear all about his candidacy when he comes to his Pancake Communion on Sunday. Tom says he's never heard of this version of the holy sacrament, and Fontana says it will be the first one ever done. The event will be held in his backyard because he's not allowed to attend a proper mass at church. Fontana says it will be a formal, four-hour ceremony, and all attendees must stand for the duration as they worship him. Tom says he will most likely not be there. Fontana begs him to go, but Tom stands firm in his decision. Fontana wonders if call screener Sherman will make it. Mike, who is also running for Mayor, says he will not attend. Fontana says it will be a hardcore Catholic service, but he's also conducting an economical ceremony. Tom doesn't quite follow what he's saying. Fontana explains that the economical version will be geared towards the non-churchgoing lay man. Tom assumes it will be a shorter version of the full service, but Fontana says it's just for people who are not into the church. Tom isn't entirely sure what word he's trying to say. Mike thinks it's ecumenical. Fontana wants to know what thaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat is, and Tom doesn't know, either. He's in the same boat with Fontana on that one.
Fontana wants Tom to guess who will
sing speak a song at the Pancake Communion. Tom incorrectly guesses that Fontana will perform. Fontana says his musical guest is one of his best friends who plays speaks in a band Tom's probably seen. Tom has no idea. Fontana gives him two hints: "Stuck Between Stations" and Boys y Girls in America. He refuses to believe that Tom doesn't know that album. Tom guesses it's by The Hold Steady. Fontana yells the name Craig Finn, their frontman, and calls Tom a rockindummy. Tom apologizes for not being aware of the Fontana/Finn friendship. Fontana reminds him that he had previously told him about "This Sinking Feeling Has Got To End," the special charity anthem that he was going to co-write with Finn. At the time he was confident that Finn wrote something to rival "Do They Know It's Christmas". However, Fontana says that he declined to pay Finn for his work because he was not pleased with the final result. He wanted Finn to rock it up a little more like something from the Big Dipper catalog. Fontana says he has tickets for the Dipper reunion show on April 24th at Maxwell's in Hoboken. Tom says he will probably be there. Fontana says he knows a secret about Tom: he is a big fan and wrote liner notes for the new Supercluster anthology. Tom says he can't talk about that on the air. Fontana says his favorite Dipper song is "Hey Mr. Lincoln" from Craps. Tom likes "Mr. Woods" from Heavens. Fontana believes these differences are the equivalent of the old Reese's Peanut Butter Cup commercials where one person's peanut butter merges with their friend's chocolate to form an entirely new tasty sensation. Tom agrees that it's just like that. Fontana wants him to repeat it out loud. Tom refuses, and Fontana admits he's just yanking el chain.
Fontana hopes he can count on Tom's support because most Newbridge voters have still not moved past the shame he brought to the local community and the church. Tom says he's still undecided and has no plans to enter the race. Fontana thinks it's because he would be unable to obtain the requisite 37 signatures on his petition. Tom is certain that he could. Fontana says Tom wouldn't believe how many times people talked s hit about him when he heard confessions prior to his frocking. He says these people didn't care for Tom or The Best Show, but he would try to give them a different perspective. He would tell them that while Tom is certainly a loudmouth, he means well and plays mostly good records aside from too much Redd Kross. Fontana says he does like the early stuff -- Teen Babes from Monsanto and Annette's Got El Hits -- but he can't handle the later stuff with Gere Fennelly on keyboards. Tom asks him about Neurotica, the bands fourth record. Fontana thought "Peach Kelli Pop" was good, but he doesn't like Robert Hecker because he held his guitar up too high at that time. Tom says he likes Hecker, and Fontana says it's just his personal opinion. Tom says that he's entitled to it. Fontana says "jeepers" and isn't sure how to properly thank Tom for granting him permission to express his views. He thinks it means so much to a frocked father. Tom says he was not questioning his right to have opinions.
Fontana says he's not a fan of Tom right now. He's beginning to think the parishioners might have been right when they said that Tom was terrible and should be put to death. Tom says he's heard it before, and he's sure he'll keep hearing it. Fontana wants Tom to guess what his first order of business will be if he's elected. Tom assumes it will involve him getting hurt or killed. Fontana confirms that he would be hurt and then killed. Tom is not worried because he's been threatened by almost every candidate. Fontana asks Tom what it feels like to know that he will probably be put to death on the first day no matter who gets elected. Tom says he has no control over that stuff. Fontana has to run because he sees Officer Harrups. He has a brief exchanged with him:
Fontana: Whaddya want?
Fontana: I did not even make any kind of motion to you.
Fontana: (quietly) Piece of crap.
Fontana: I didn't say anything.
Fontana begins running away with Harrups in close pursuit. He says he's having trouble running in his robe and tells Tom he'll see him on Sunday at the Pancake Communion. He hangs up.
- Eric from Clinton proposes Jandek on Corwood, a documentary about the titular, Houston-based outsider musician, as a good choice for the Netflix game. He bets they only have one copy because his friend rented it in Baltimore and got the same copy he did. Tom thinks it's worthy of consideration. Eric also wants to extend the Bob Dylan HOT streak to include his 1990 release, Under the Red Sky. He believes that as long as Self Portrait's "Woogie Boogie" is present, you have to include "Wiggle Wiggle." Tom says he can't cotton to that level of craziness. He can cotton to the email he just received from Nate about the ultimate COLD streak: James.
- Mike in Manhattan calls to participate in the topic despite not feeling too well. He thinks Prince was on a HOT streak from 1979 up until "Batdance" in 1989. Tom is shocked that he didn't enjoy that song. Mike says it just didn't do it for him, although Prince won him back a bit two years later with singles like "Cream" from Diamonds and Pearls. Mike says he's amazed that Tom Hanks found work after appearing in Bachelor Party (1984) because that was the start of the actor's early COLD streak. He also cites The 'Burbs (which is great - Ed.), Turner y Hooch, and Joe Versus el Volcano. Tom notices that Mike forgot about a hit fontasy called Splash. (He also conveniently omitted Big). Mike doesn't think Splash is any good, and Tom thinks he's insane. Mike says he doesn't know, man, and Tom agrees with that in the form of a GOMP.
- James calls to say that even he likes Splash. Tom Jameses him within three seconds.
- Adam in Bedford-Stuyvesant opts for the HOT streaks of TheTwo MJs: Michael Jackson (1979-1987) and Michael Jordan, who was a "fairly dominant figure" until he left the NBA for a baseball stint in 1994 and became human. Tom agrees with everything Adam said about Jordan not getting it back after his detour to the diamond except for his second three-peat of NBA Championships from 1996-1998. He GOMPs Adam for not knowing anything. Tom believes that greatness recognizes greatness. While Michael Jordan doesn't know him, he's very confident that the hardcourt legend would see "it" if they met. He'd see the aura and give Tom the nod.
- Evan in Providence thinks newspaper comic strips have been on a COLD streak since Bill Watterson retired Calvin y Hobbes in 1995. Tom traces the streak to at least as far back as Gasoline Alley, which launched in 1918, although he doesn't really know it. Evan admits that it's a bit of a weird one, but he touts Krazy Kat as an example of the interesting work being done in the early days. He points out that the funny pages have shifted from being a newspaper's major selling point to not much more than a brief scan for the obligatory Dilbert panels. Tom does enjoy the popular, well-drawn Scott Adams strip. He's even taken out his pen to draw some of his favorite characters. Tom says he used to love Garfield until the Lasagna Cat people told him it was stupid. He gives them a thumbs down for their efforts to figure out that Garfield was actually terrible.
Evan says that Charles Schulz was on a HOT streak after figuring out a way to do a more authentic comic strip about the darker side of the childhood experience. Tom asks him what the strip was called. Evan says it's Peanuts, featuring a character named Charlie Brown. Tom thought that was the name of the strip. Evan gets a bit too riled up and starts talking over Tom. While it was nothing like a Henry Owings-grade steamroll, Tom still has to get rid of him. He makes it clear that overtalking is an automatic one-way ticket to the Negative Zone where the offending caller will become a plate of glass spinning around the galaxy.
- Mhairi in Buffalo refuses to spell her name and puts gossip blogger Perez Hilton on a COLD streak because he got Jamesed. Tom suspects that Mhairi is James's wig-glue dealer and only friend. The "Toupee Gang" strikes again!
- Dania from Chicago can't believe that Mhairi dared to claim that she perpetrated a Jamesing. Tom compares it to a scenario where he started calling people as Brad Pitt. He's not Brad Pitt; she's not James. However, she is wrapped up in her own nightmare if James is her friend. Tom does an impression of a frantic, marble-mouthed James calling his female minion to get her to do a proxy Jamesing in exchange for ordering an extra tube of wig glue.
Dania ties Michael J. Fox's HOT streak to his starring turns in the Back to the Future trilogy from 1985-1990. Tom suggests going back to 1982 to include the first few seasons of his concurrent work on Family Ties. Dania will not mention any cold streaks because Fox's acting career has been affected by his health issues. She had a huge crush on him due to his appeal as the good "bad boy" of that period. While he was a nice person, he dressed like a rock star with acid-washed jeans, denim jackets, and puffy white sneakers. Tom thinks the current MJF equivalent is the The Jonas
Brothers. Dania is not familiar with these Wyckoff pop rockers, so Tom urges her to get with it and discover the good stuff.
- Herbie from Philadelphia returns because he got cut off earlier. It never gets old. Tom celebrates another abrupt dump by scatting his way to the intro of "Barbara Ann." He's less happy about hearing that troglodytic comedian Artie Lange is planning to publish a memoir. Tom believes that Jersey came up a bit short when it spawned this Double Deuce trash monster.
- Kim from dandy Tampa, FL, discusses David Lynch's ability to run HOT and
COLD throughout his career and even within the same film. She thought Inland Empire started slow, but then got hot for 45 minutes when Lynch improved on elements from his surreal noir, Mulholland Drive. Tom says he can't bring himself to watch the film, and Kim doesn't blame him because it quickly falls apart. She includes Eraserhead, The Elephant Man, Blue Velvet, Twin Peaks, and Wild at Heart in Lynch's hot streak. The director then started cooling off with Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, Mulholland Drive, and Inland Empire. Tom wants to know how many times Kim has viewed Eraserhead. She says that she prefers to watch it in snippets because its weird, hypnotic tempo often puts her to sleep. Tom imagines that Eraserhead is similar to one of Stevie Blue's home movies. He is now ready to start throwing the old guard -- Blue, Purple Shirt, Petey, HOFers Chris & Gord -- under the bus. Tom misses them, but it's time to move on.
Kim says she's has some concerns about Eric's Jandek on Corwood Netflix suggestion because it may be too much of a cult fave. She just recommended it to someone as the first half of a double bill with Irwin Chusid's hilarious takedown essay. Tom thinks the mysterious Jandek looks like Ted Danson. Kim's not sure if she's actually seen a picture of him, but she imagined him looking like a cross between Scott Walker and Abe Lincoln, which does in fact equal Ted Danson, if he was a quasi-albino. She thought she hallucinated that mash-up, but Tom says her description is dead-on.
- Matt from Fayetteville, AR, says he's enjoying a cold beer in his bedroom after getting off work an hour ago. It's not that guy. John the coffin-shopper is based in Charleston, South Carolina. Matt says he did have a hard day because he had a huge assessment course as his final semester at college winds down. It was rough, but he passed with flying colors. Tom appreciates the strong effort because he wanted to go home instead of doing the show tonight. The Kid came in and showed everyone how it's done with a magical, one-topic wonder. Matt says it's like lightning in a bottle. Tom agrees, but he doesn't know what that means. Matt doesn't know, either. They should have asked call screener Serj. Matt drops two entries:
- Sarah from New Orleans says the phenomenal, futuristic (1994!) sci-fi/rock opera The Apple is a good Netflix choice because she's been waiting to receive it for three weeks. Tom thinks it may be too popular. Sarah says Mark Ibold bailed on dinner because he probably heard a crazed Pavement fan talking about it last week on the show. He's also a "foodie," so he may have opted for one of the city's fine dining establishments. Tom confirms that the definition of a "foodie" is someone who refuses to eat McDonald's or food cooked in Sarah's friend's backyard. Tom thinks the term, which is on a HOT streak, is absurd because everyone prefers well-prepared food.
- Nick from Norwalk fires away:
HOT streak: New Order's 1980s singles
COLD streak: Frank Oz as a director
Nick is reluctant to start the streak with What About Bob?, and Tom nixes it because he loves it. He then unleashes his classic impression of Richard Dreyfuss granting Bob permision to borrow his slicker. Nick goes with Oz's 1992-2004 run of HouseSitter, The Indian and the Cupboard, In & Out, Bowfinger (which is pretty damn good - Ed.), The Score, and The Stepword Wives .
Tom decides to end the show with a blast of unscreened calls and lands a HOFer in Jason from Jersey City. Tom declares his sweet English prince to be a champion as unbeatable at The Wiz. Jason lives up to his advance billing by delivering the HOT streak Tom's been waiting for all night: The Best Show on WFMU, 2000-present. Tom says this was the only reason he even put this stupid topic on the table. He wanted to see if someone out there could add 2 + 2 to come up with the desired response. Jason says that even though he was the only listener to say it, he bets that many others feel the show's heat. Tom fears that The Best Show is yesterday's news compared to what
Duncan Clark Little Billy Victor, has up his sleeve. Tom ends the show with three calls in one minute, most notably a guy who held on for 15 minutes to say "Hey" and get hung up on like a common animule.
On the Next ... The Best Show on WFMU: Pope Benedict XVI discusses his visit to Dischord House and recaps his Record Store Day haul from Other Music, Supercaller Paycheque tries to explain the mutant behavior of his T-Dot compatriots, Oscar-winning scribe John Ford promotes the DVD release of the indie sensation Under Seige 2, Borat Oblama checks in from the re-opened Hooterville on PA primary night, and Leon Carbone calls to say he's sorry about all that cancer. He was just on a roll.
For Call Screener Winston:
EXCLUSIVE footage of Tom's first flight with the Newbridge Blue Angels. Well done, sir!
This is Recap #100.