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Movies, Travel and All The Fun Stuff Inbetween

Updated: 2018-04-12T03:14:59.654-04:00


Every Movie I Saw in 2017


I don't watch sports and I don't binge anything. I watch movies. Here's the annual list of all the movies I witnessed the previous year:Sully (2016)Southside With You (2016)The Homecoming: A Christmas Story (1971)National Lampoon's Movie Madness (1982)Central Intelligence (2016)Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders (2016)Don't Think Twice (2016)Floyd Norman: An Animated Life (2016)Ducktales The Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp (1990)Selma (2014)Hot Rod (2007)Hidden Figures (2016)Mr. Magoo (1997)Blind Date (1987)True Memoirs of an International Assassin (2016)La La Land (2016)Daffy Duck's Quackbusters (1988)The Jungle Book (2016)Bad Moms (2016)The LEGO Batman Movie (2017)Pete's Dragon (1977)Scavenger Hunt (1979)Suicide Squad (2016)The Sandlot (1993)The Death of "Superman Lives": What Happened? (2015)Fantasia (1940)Keeping Up With the Jones (2016)Gus (1976)Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)Fist Fight (2017)Beauty and the Beast (1991)40 Pounds of Trouble (1962)Kong: Skull Island (2017)Mary Poppins (1964)The Sign of Zorro (1958)Westward Ho, the Wagons! (1956)Tangled: Before Ever After (2017)The Jetsons & WWE: Robo-WrestleMania! (2017)Necessary Roughness (1991)Shag (1989)Bring It On (2000)Bring It On: In It To Win It (2007)Uncle Buck (1989)Beauty and the Beast (2017)The Wizard (1989)Trolls (2016)EuroTrip (2004)National Lampoon's European Vacation (1985)Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project (2007)Smurfs: The Lost Village (2017)Better Off Dead (1985)Yoga Hosers (2016)The Founder (2016)Kevin Hart: What Now? (2016)Born in China (2017)Big Bully (1996)The Truman Show (1998)Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising (2016)Hardbodies (1984)Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)Fatal Instinct (1993)Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)The Edge of Seventeen (2016)The Karate Kid (1984)The Prince of Egypt (1998)Mischief (1985)Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (2017)This Is Spinal Tap (1984)The Crush (1993)Surf Ninjas (1993)Caddyshack II (1988)Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)Movie 43 (2013)Bambi (1942)Meatballs (1979)Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (2017)Head Office (1985)Cars (2006)Alien (1979)UHF (1989)Race For Your Life, Charlie Brown (1977)Summer School (1987)Ernest Goes To Camp (1987)Cars 3 (2017)Camp Nowhere (1994)Toy Story (1995)The Country Bears (2002)Modern Times (1936)2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)Airplane II: The Sequel (1982)The Beverly Hillbillies (1993)Summer Job (1989)Captain Ron (1992)Parent Trap: Hawaiian Honeymoon (1989)My Demon Lover (1987)12 Angry Men (1957)Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)Aquamarine (2006)Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)The Emoji Movie (2017)Dancin': It's On! (2015)Laura (1944)My Father the Hero (1994)The Boss Baby (2017)Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot (1992)Billy Madison (1995)The Little Mermaid (1989)The Muppet Movie (1979)Adore (2013)Spies Like Us (1985)New York Minute (2004)Blast From the Past (1999)Best Worst Movie (2009)Cop and a Half: New Recruit (2017)Rocky (1976)Excess Baggage (1997)The Outcasts (2017)Bring It On: Worldwide #Cheersmack (2017)Singin' in the Rain (1952)The Errand Boy (1961)Operation Dumbo Drop (1995)Shrek (2001)The African Lion (1955)The Road to Hong Kong (1962)How to Be A Latin Lover (2017)The Disorderly Orderly (1964)Smokey and the Bandit (1977)A Goofy Movie (1995)Them! (1954)Dirty Dancing (1987)Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982)Baywatch (2017)The King of Comedy (1982)The Gold Rush (1925)The Big Sick (2017)The Bellboy (1960)The LEGO Ninjago Movie (2017)The Garbage Pail Kids Movie (1987)Toy Story 3 (1999)Shin Godzilla (2016)High School High (1996)Rough Night (2017)Hot Shots! (1991)My Little Pony: The Movie (2017)The Tigger Movie (2000)Teen Witch (1989)Wonder Woman (2017)Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)Psycho (1960)Top Cat Begins (2015)Boo! A Madea Halloween (2106)The Babysitter (2017)Haunted Honeymoon (1986)Drive Me Crazy (1999)52 Pick-Up (1986)The Slumber Party Massacre (1982)Attack of the Killer Tomatoes! (1978)High Society (1956)47 Meters Down (2017)Dracula: Dead and Loving It (1995)Halloween with the New Add[...]

"What's Your Favorite Movie?" episode 33 - Superman NOW AVAILABLE!


Listen to the latest episode of my movie podcast. In this episode we discuss comic book movies as well as other great manly films! Listen to "What's Your Favorite Movie?" on Spreaker.

"What's Your Favorite Movie?" podcast Episode #16 NOW AVAILABLE!


Our wonderful movie podcast is available on iTunes, Spreaker and by clicking the playable link below. In this episode, we discuss some of the films made by cast members of the cult TV series TWIN PEAKS which returns to television this month!

Listen to "What's Your Favorite Movie?" on Spreaker. New episodes are available the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month. You can also find the show on iTunes, Spreaker and various other podcast apps. We greatly appreciate any feedback. Thanks for listening!

"What's Your Favorite Movie?" podcast episode 12 - NOW AVAILABLE!


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"What's Your Favorite Movie?" Episode 4 - Now Available!!


Another episode of my soon-to-be award winning podcast "What's Your Favorite Movie?" is now available on iTunes, Spreaker and right here on the blog! My guest Diana and I have been friends for a very long time and have seen many movies together - some good, most bad. We dive into some of her favorite movies as well as some of the silly titles I've dragged her to over the years. It's a light and breezy hour of movie goodness that your ears will thank you for! 

Diana's favorite movies include The Princess Bride, Some Kind of Wonderful and Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me. In addition to those, we talk about a whole bunch more like: SpaceCamp, The Craft, Mannequin, Pretty in Pink, Silence of the Lambs, Casual Sex? and Return to Oz.

frameborder="0" scrolling="no" src="" style="height: 131px; width: 100%;"> Thanks For Listening! Please spread the word so we can get this show off the ground! Share it on Facebook, Twitter or anywhere! Follow the show on Twitter: @WYFMoviePodcast. Email us at

"What's Your Favorite Movie?" Episode 3 Now Available!


Are you ready to put some more movie goodness in your ears!? Episode 3 of "What's Your Favorite Movie?" is now up and ready for your approval on iTunes, Spreaker and right here on WWOB. In this show, fellow blogger Elle drops by and talks about her love of movies especially some musical flicks like ALMOST FAMOUS (2000), MOULIN ROUGE! (2001) and THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS (1993). There's so much more good stuff in this episode that you'll just have to listen to it for yourself...
frameborder="0" scrolling="no" src="" style="height: 131px; width: 100%;">Help us out by spreading the word; Tell your friends and share on your social media! You can also help us out by subscribing or liking the show and leaving a brief (nice) review on iTunes! You can also leave a comment or make suggestions right here in the comments section, on Twitter @wyfmoviepodcast or e-mail at

What ever you can do, Thank You So Much!

"What's Your Favorite Movie?" Episode 2 Now Available!


On the second episode of my podcast, What's Your Favorite Movie?, my good friend Kevin joins me to discuss not only his favorite films but also a few "classics" that I've dragged him to over the years. You'll also hear about some great old Baltimore area theaters and our most often quoted movies.

frameborder="0" scrolling="no" src="" style="height: 131px; width: 100%;"> "What's Your Favorite Movie?" is now available on iTunes and Spreaker. Don't forget to subscribe to the show and comments are also appreciated! Thanks!

My New Podcast! "What's Your Favorite Movie?" Episode 1


(image) I am excited to share with you all - MY FIRST PODCAST!

I've been wanting to do a podcast for years, but every time I looked into it, the process seemed way over my head. Well, a few weeks ago I decided I wasn't going to rest until I got somewhere with this podcast production dream and here I am with episode one!

The show is called "What's Your Favorite Movie?" -  each podcast will have a different guest and we'll discuss their favorite movies and why those films
are their favorites. Besides talking about the films themselves, I want to discover people's relationship with movies, stories and memories they have about movies, and explore the deeper role movies play in our lives.

I still have some issues to work out on the long term hosting and also distribution of the show, but for now the first episode is up and running. The first guest is my friend Grant, who I've known since we were 10 years old but I never knew he has such a passion of Star Trek, especially Star Trek II. We talk about his favorite movies and a little more on this premier episode.

I'm pretty happy with the way the first show turned out. It's a little sluggish in the middle but it picks up in the last third of the show. It's a learning process, so hopefully the show will get a little tighter and polished with each passing episode. Until then, I hope you'll take a listen and enjoy and even possibly share the show with your friends and followers.

src="" style="width: 100%; height: 131px;" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">I'll let you know when we are listed in iTunes and other Podcast Directories.

and now...Every Movie I Saw in 2015


Life Itself (2014)I was inspired to keep track of all the movies I've seen by seeing similar lists on other blogs, plus I've been listening to some movie podcasts and it seems to be a pretty common practice for any good film buff. While I didn't break 200 films in 2015, I did top last year's tally by 20 films. I saw 151 in all, last year. The main source of film goodness for me continues to be the DVD service of Netflix, now called DVD.Netflix,com. The streaming services of Netflix and Amazon also provide a wealth of unique films but I'm always looking around at other sources to find good movies. Anywho...enjoy the list. As requested by a reader last year, I've included the date of screening and the source.1. Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) 1/1 DVD2. Back to the Future Part II (1989) 1/1 DVD3.Road to Bali (1952) 1/3 Amazon Prime4. Mr. Deeds Goes To Town (1936) 1/6 TCM5. Rewind This! (2013) 1/7 Netflix DVD6. Road to Singapore (1940) 1/8 Netflix DVD7. On The Town (1949) 1/9 TCM8. Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990) 1/10 DVD9. Let's Be Cops (2014) 1/13 Netflix DVD10. Into the Storm (2014) 1/15 Netflix DVD11. Trouble Along The Way (1953) 1/22 Netflix DVD12. Road to Zanzibar (1941) 1/23 Netflix DVD13. A Kiss For Corliss (1949) 1/24 TCM14. Life Itself (2014) 1/25 CNN15. Magic in the Moonlight (2014) 2/5 Netflix DVD16. Maleficent (2014) 2/6 Redbox17. Earth to Echo (2014) 2/7 Netflix DVD18. The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water (2015) 2/9 R/C Hanover Movies 1619. Step Up: All In (2014) 2/10 Netflix DVD20. Lucy (2014) 2/12 Netflix DVD21. Road to Morocco (1942) 2/28 Netflix DVD22. Misty (1961) 3/1 DVD23. Airport (1970) 3/2 Netflix DVD24. Airport 1975 (1974) 3/3 Netflix DVD25. Call Me Bwana (1963)  3/6 MGM HD26. Airport '77 (1977) 3/8 Netflix DVD27. The Road to Hong Kong (1962) 3/9 Netflix DVD28. The Flintstones and WWE: Stone Age Smackdown (2015) 3/10 DVD29. Fifty Shades of Grey (2015) 3/13 R/C Hanover Movies 1630. The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T (1953) 3/14 Sony Movie Channel31.  Lost in Alaska (1952) 3/15 Netflix DVD32. The Concorde: Airport '79 (1979) 3/17 Netflix DVD33. Gone Girl (2014) 3/18 Redbox34. The Late Shift (1996) 3/23 Amazon Prime35. Barbie in Princess Power (2015) 3/24 Netflix DVD36. Cinderella (2015) 3/24 R/C Hanover Movies 1637. Marathon (1980) 3/31 DVD38. Earthquake (1974) 4/1 Netflix DVD39. Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd (1952) 4/2 TCM40. Birdman (2014) 4/8 Netflix DVD41. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001) 4/11 DVD42. The Music in Me (2015) 4/12 UP43. Bad Words (2013) 4/13 HBO44. Walk of Shame (2014) 4/16 HBO45. Top Five (2014) 4/19 Netflix DVD46. Monkey Kingdom (2015) 4/24 Regal Westminster 947. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982) 4/26 HBO48. The Avengers (2012) 4/29 DVD49. Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015) 4/30 R/C Hanover Movies 1650. Lovelines (1984) 5/11 DVD51. Legally Blonde (2001) 5/15 Netflix52. Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (2015) 5/17 R/C Hanover Movies 1653. Stripped (2014) 5/19 Amazon Prime54. Mortdecai (2015) 5/26 Netflix DVD55. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002) 5/27  DVD56. Student Bodies (1981) 6/1 VHS57. Superfast! (2015) 6/3 Netflix DVD58. Hot Girls Wanted (2015) 6/6 Netflix59. Tyler Perry's Madea's Tough Love (2015) 6/7 Netflix DVD60. Barbie in A Mermaid Tale (2010) 6/9 DVD61. Jurassic World (2015) 6/16 R/C Hanover Movies 16 62. Snoopy Come Home (1972) 6/17 DVD63. 22 Jump Street (2014) 6/22 Netflix DVD64. Jurassic Park III (2001) 6/23 SyFy65. Inside Out (2015) 6/24 Frank Theaters Gettysburg 1066. Batman vs. Robin (2015) 6/29 Netflix DVD67. Kidco (1984) 6/30 HDNet Movies68. Jaws (1975) 7/5 DVD69. Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983) 7/5 DVD70. A Night at the Roxbury (1998) 7/5 DVD71. These Amazing Shadows (2011) 7/7 HDNet Movies72. Poison Ivy (1985) 7/12 VHS73. Treasure Planet (2002) 7/13 DVD74. Blue Summer (1973) 7/16 Netfl[...]

10 Favorite Films I Saw in 2015


I was able to see a lot of movies this past year. From classics to new releases - popular films and obscure titles - one thing most of the movies I saw had in common: they are light hearted. At the end of the day, when I have an hour or two to sit and take in a film, the last thing I want to do is use my brain. But here's a list of 10 of the best films that I saw for the first time in 2014. Airport (1970; dir. George Seaton)I got into a bit of a disaster film phase earlier in the year and watched a handful of classics in the genre, including all four entries in the Airport series. The first one is a real bang up of a motion picture with about 17 different storylines going on - some of them funny, some of them serious and a whole slew of great actors that I love. Dean Martin, George Kennedy, Helen Hayes, Maureen Stapleton...and even good ol' Gary Collins show up in this nail biter about an evening at an airport where just about everything goes wrong. It was really cool to see how much the beloved Airplane! (1980) borrowed from Airport in terms of style, pacing and some of the situations and characters. This is a really good movie, it won Best Picture for the year it came out. If you can handle the slower paced action films of the early 70's, this one certainly holds up and I highly recommend it. Bad Words (2013; dir. Jason  Bateman)Jason Bateman finds a loophole in the National Spelling Bee's rules that allows him to enter as an adult and get revenge on the system that made him a looser in his childhood. Painfully funny and fantastic script, this is one of the few films that lays out a really solid story while never forgetting to be laugh out loud hilarious.           Cinderella (2015; dir. Kenneth Branagh)Kenneth Branagh makes awesome high culture Shakespeare pictures and he is an absolute master at making fantastic popcorn movies. This live-action translation of Disney's beloved animated Cinderella (1950) is both luxurious and playful. So many modern updates of fairytales and cartoons try to deviate from the original source material. Branagh's Cinderella delights in bringing the memories of the cartoon movie to life while filling in some holes and offering alternate vantage points on some of the key story elements. The result is a fresh take on an old tale that is every bit and magical and Disney as the animated film we all grew up with.  Gone Girl (2014; dir. David Fincher)Every year, one or two Oscar-worthy films make it into my DVD player. Gone Girl was just an intense thriller with twists and turns and surprises all over the place. A really well made movie that I thoroughly enjoyed. It was also cool to see supporting players Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler Perry and Casey Wilson in such a high caliber dramatic production.Inside Out (2015; dirs. Pete Docter & Ronnie Del Carmen)Inside Out is Pixar running full throttle and doing everything right. Hysterical, touching and wildly creative, this film has everything going for it. There's also perfect cartoon casting with Amy Poehler as the optimistic Joy, The Office's Phyllis Smith as Sadness and even Mindy Kaling (who I usually cant stand) was really good as Disgust. Lewis Black as the fiery haired Anger is one of those rare moments when a comic's physical and creative voice are matched perfectly with an animated character. As with any really good animated film, this one plays equally to children and adults.  Jurassic World (2105; dir. Colin Trevorrow)I was never really a fan of the original Jurassic Park but something about this movie looked like it would be a fun Summer afternoon with my kids and boy was I right. I really liked how they completely fleshed out the idea of a theme park this time, showing how a real working tourist attraction with[...]

White Christmas


Why isn't this version on the radio every 20 minutes?

Marilyn McCoo and the incomparable John Davidson nailing WHITE CHRISTMAS on a 1983 episode of SOLID GOLD!

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A Marshmallow World


There is nobody on the planet today even half as cool as these two guys.  Watch Dean Martin and his pal Frank Sinatra breeze through a performance of A MARSHMALLOW WORLD on a December 21, 1967 episode of THE DEAN MARTIN SHOW.

Legend has it that NBC wanted Dean Martin for a show so badly, that they only made him work one afternoon a week. He would come in a record the show without any rehearsal and it ended up working quite well for the show. The laid back feeling rolled over to the guests too! Watch Frank just go ahead and pull up his socks while singing on national television:

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Compare that to this next clip, which I assume is from a few years later...I'm not sure ol' Dean even knows where he is:

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The Christmas Song


This is the real deal, right here...Nat King Cole singing his signature holiday tune - The Christmas Song.

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Nat King Cole believed that smoking cigarettes gave his voice the nice crisp, low tone he was known for. He was known to chain smoke several cigarettes in a row before recording, often smoking three packs a day. He died in 1965, just a few months after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

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A Christmas To Remember


In 1984, Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton were both huge mega stars at the top of their game. When they got together, people just couldn't get enough of it. One of the many specials they did together was the peculiar KENNY & DOLLY: A CHRISTMAS TOGETHER.  The entire special is on YouTube, I've watched it - and I'm not sure why. But here's Kenny, dressed as Handy Smurf, and Dolly, dressed as a 5 year old's Christmas arts and crafts project, singing their huge hit A Christmas To Remember along with a cast of 20 some store window mannequins...

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Silver Bells


This week we're featuring some YouTube clips of various Christmas songs from various sources. Join us all week for festive holiday fun, won't ya!? First up is the odd pairing of Bob Hope and Olivia Newton-John lip synching SILVER BELLS.

Silver Bells is one of those Christmas standards that you assume has just been around forever, but it's origins are actually directly connected to Bob Hope. The song was written for the 1951 comedy musical THE LEMON DROP KID staring Hope along with Marilyn Maxwell and William "Fred Mertz" Frawley. The movie debuted in March of '51, but in Christmas 1950 a recording of Silver Bells was released sung by Bing Crosby. When the record became such a huge hit, the movie studio quickly brought the stars back in to film a more elaborate musical number to do the song justice.

The song, of course, became a classic and Bob Hope used it as his signature Christmas song and performed it almost every year on his annual Christmas special. He asked Olivia Newton-John to join him in a performance in his 1977 descriptively titled special THE BOB HOPE ALL STAR CHRISTMAS COMEDY SPECIAL. Along for the ride in the special was Christmas staple Perry Como, Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker and The Muppets!

Sadly, nobody has uploaded the entire special (at least I couldn't find it) but here's Bob and a much younger Olivia (uncomfortably) flirting through a snow covered Burbank soundstage singing the holiday classic:
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The Ultimate Netflix Christmas Episode List


Saved By The Bell "Home For Christmas"Christmas television programing continues to gain popularity with each passing year. What used to be a few prime time specials every December has turned into 24 hour Christmas movie channels, marathons of Christmas Specials and Christmas episodes and more and more new original Christmas content making it to our screens each year. It's a great time to be a Christmas TV fanatic. Christmas themed episodes of beloved television series have become just as much a part of some people's holiday viewing traditions as Rudolph and Charlie Brown. There are several DVD compilations of vintage Christmas episodes and of course the closer we get to Christmas, the more you see jolly episodes of reruns airing. A great place to find loads of Christmas from television's past is Netflix - which features not only the latest "binge-worthy" trending series but plenty of goodies from the last several decades.We've scoured the merriest corners of Netflix to compile a fairly comprehensive list of Christmas Time Episodes from a variety of series. The Netflix interface varies from platform to platform, so we've included the Season and Episode Number for each episode for the easiest searching. Happy Viewing!About A Boy S2E8 "About A Christmas Card"Ally McBeal S1E11 "Silver Bells"; S2E10 "Making Spirits Bright"; S3E7 "Saving Santa"; S3E8 "Blue Christmas"; S4E8 "The Man With the Bag"The Andy Griffith Show S1E11 "A Christmas Story"The Bernie Mac Show S1E7 "A Christmas Story"Bob's Burgers S3E9 "God Rest Ye Merry Gentle-Mannequins"; S4E8 "Christmas In The Car"Bojack Horseman "Bojack Horseman Christmas Special" (individually listed)The Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About That "The Cat in the Hat Knows A Lot About Christmas"Cheers S6E12 "Christmas Cheers"The Cleveland Show S1E9 "A Cleveland Brown Christmas"; S2E8 "Murray Christmas"; S3E7 "Die Semi-Hard"; S4E6 "`Tis the Cleveland To Be Sorry"Crossing Jordan S1E10 "Blue Christmas"The Dick Van Dyke Show S3E13 "The Alan Brady Show Presents"Doctor Who S2E1 "The Christmas Invasion"; S4E1 "Voyage of the Damned"Everybody Loves Raymond S2E12 "All I Want For Christmas"; S3E12 "The Toaster"; S4E11 "The Christmas Picture"; S5E11 "Christmas Present"; S6E12 "Season's Greetings"; S7E11 "The Thought That Counts"; S8E10 "Jazz Records"Frasier S1E12 "Miracle of Third or Fourth Street"; S3E9 "Frasier Grinch"; S5E9 "Perspectives on Christmas"; S6E10 "Merry Christmas, Mrs. Moskowitz"; S7E11 "The Fight Before Christmas"; S8E8 "Mary Christmas"; S10E10 "We Two Kings"; S11E11 "High Holidays"Friends S7E10 "The One With the Holiday Armadillo"; S9E10 "The One With Christmas in Tulsa"Futurama S2E8 "Xmas Story"; S4E2 "A Tale of Two Santas"Girl Meets World S1E16 "Girl Meets Home For The Holidays"Glee S2E10 "A Very Glee Christmas"; S3E9 "An Extraordinary Merry Christmas"; S4E10 "Glee, Actually"; S5E8 "Previously Unaired Christmas"Handy Manny E19 "Flicker Saves Christmas"; E20 "The Ayala"s Christmas Extravaganza"House, M.D. S3E10 "Merry Little Christmas"; S5E11 "Joy To The World"House of Mouse "Mickey's Magical Christmas: Snowed in at the House of Mouse" (stand alone)It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia S6E13 "A Very Sunny Christmas"Jessie S1E10 "A Christmas Story"Last Man Standing S1E10 "Last Christmas Standing"; S2E7 "Putting A Hit on Christmas"MacGyver S5E11 "The Madonna"Malcom In The Middle S3E7 "Christmas"; S5E7 "Christmas Trees"; S6E6 "Hal's Christmas Gift" 30 Rock offered up several holiday episodes during its seven season run.M*A*S*H S5E15 "Dear Sis"Melissa & Joey S3E16 "A New Kind of Family Christmas"; S4E2 "A Melanie & Josiah Christmas"Murder, She Wrote S9E9 "A Christmas Secret"N[...]

10 Favorite Dutch Wonderland Attractions


Just the other day, Fox News posted their list of 10 Best Attractions at Dutch Wonderland. It seems like an odd choice for an article by a national website and just like the Fox News we're all come to love and admire on television, the story has more than one factual inaccuracy. Either way, the article made me think, "Well, I should do a list of favorite DW attractions!" Just about every attraction at the park is hit with one member of my family or another, but this is a sampling of the things I enjoy most at the Lancaster park...Astroliner  Long before every theme park had a motion simulator ride and even before Disney perfected the art by taking us on a Star Tour into the Star Wars universe, the Astroliner would provide similar thrills by rocking back and forth while a movie showed an out of control space mission on the cockpit screen. This ride would pop up at carnivals and beach-side amusement areas and I loved it. Whenever I saw one of these set up, I would beg my parents to let me ride it. I even have fond memories of riding it at Dutch Wonderland when I was little.  Dutch Wonderland installed the ride in the 70's and tried to sell it shortly before 2000. When they couldn't find a buyer, DW decided to spruce up the ride and present it as a piece of amusement park history. Now the ride serves as one of the parks more unique attractions.  The 8mm rear projection film has been replaced with a wide screen TV and a DVD of the original film, but the experience is still good old fashioned fun. (There's a more modern version of the ride, the VR Voyager, housed right across from this amusement park antique.)Decades of Dutch Wonderland Dutch Wonderland offers quite a bit of live entertainment for a park of it's size. As season pass holders for three years I've probably seen at least a dozen different shows in the park. To celebrate the park's 50th Anniversary in 2013 they added Decades of Dutch Wonderland which offers a brief history of the park but a pretty darn good soundtrack of hits from the 60's through today. Most of the musical show offerings at DW consist of a two person cast, Decades benefits from four live actors as well as Duke The Dragon (who doesn't sing, but he can dance!) The show basically plays like a mini-concert and if you look around in the middle of the show, you'll see more than one parent tapping their feet or bobbing their head to this great collection of songs.Double Splash Flume This is a fairly standard Log Flume style ride but it is a nice one, where the track sits in the ground instead of above like most others. The ride has two drops, the first one is small but produces a surprising splash. The ride out to the main lift is enjoyable. There used to be statues of animals and a mist tunnel along the way but the animals have retired and the mist shut off. You still get a nice scenic trip with great views of the roller coaster and a nice way to cool off without getting drenched. It's also nice that there is no height restriction so the whole family can ride together.Dragon's Lair This is one of the park's earliest attractions, even though it has been altered greatly since opening day. Little log boats, similar to the ones on the log flume ride, take you on a nice relaxing ride around a small lake in the front of the park. There's not much action here, just an experience similar to renting a boat for an afternoon and peacefully cruising the local lake. The boat is guided by an underwater rail, but steering wheels on each log boat give kids the opportunity to drive. There are a few animated and non-animated pretend animals along the w[...]

Christmas In July


Today check out my guest post over at  Christmas TV History where I answer some questions about one of my favorite subjects - Christmas Specials! And if you're joining via hopping over from Christmas TV Party, then Welcome! Here's a few Christmas related links from years past you may enjoy...

My Top 50 Christmas Viewing List

8 Christmas Songs I Never Need To Hear Again

Crabs For Christmas

Greatest Christmas Movie Ever!

He-Man + She-Ra + Christmas = Awesome

More Posts tagged Christmas Specials

Hey, Remember Treasure Planet Was A Movie People Paid To See Once


(image) The other night the kids and I popped in Treasure Planet, Disney's 2002 animated futuristic adaption of the classic Robert Louis Stevenson novel Treasure Island. It's one of the last few Disney animated classics that my kids haven't seen yet, and I myself only saw it once upon it's theatrical release. At the time, it was a rare misstep for Disney Animation but having had another odd flop a few years earlier with Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001) it was to signal the end of Disney's decade long reign of producing classic animated fare year after year. Now, Treasure Planet sits on a growing list of titles like Chicken Little, Bolt and Home on the Range as lesser loved and lesser known Disney Animated Films.

So it is with some trepidation that I started up the movie. For me, Disney films are best when they are about princesses and magic and funny animals. They are at their least inviting when they are trying to do something outside of the "Disney Box." Treasure Planet is not a bad film but it's one main flaw runs throughout the entire film. The character design of almost the entire cast is unpleasant and perhaps uninspired.

A dog/man scientist, a cat/person captain, a rock thing is a suit, a lobster, a spider...none of these really played for laughs. The human characters are all bland, and the Long John Silver character is supposed to be half machine half something else...I'm not sure what.

(image) The story is tight, the action is good, there's plenty of humor...although a Star Wars reject character that only speaks through rear-end noises seems a little low brow by Disney standards. I just can't get by how ugly and unappealing the characters look.

Two characters stand out as having a traditional Disney look; a little floating shape shifting blob called Morph and a crazy robot named B.E.N who is voiced by Martin Short. These are the only two characters that could even support any merchandise from this movie. And that's kind of the strange thing about this movie, because even though it's only 12 years old - I don't think the suits at Disney would even finance a movie nowadays that wasn't chockfull of characters that would easily translate into plush toys, action figures, T shirts or the 100 Million other things they need to make a movie a real cash cow nowadays.

In the end, Treasure Planet is not as bad as it's legacy would lead you to believe. It's based on a time tested story retold by master storytellers who chose to step a little too far out of the magical world of Disney for their visual inspiration.

This Is The Best Ice Cream I Have Ever Had


Imagine you've only ever seen your favorite movie on a 20 inch television screen. Now imagine seeing that movie on a 70 ft. Imax screen. That lame analogy is my way of describing the depth of flavor you'll feel when you take your first taste of Mr. G's Old Fashioned Hand Made Ice Cream. It is hands down, the best ice cream I have ever tasted!Mr. G serves up his outrageous ice cream from a century old building in Gettysburg's tourist area. In fact, Mr. G has such a great location - Abraham Lincoln walked by the place on his way to give the Gettysburg Address. If you don't believe me, check out the trees on either side of the building. They both have plaques confirming Mr. Lincoln's passing by! I'm sure the building was used for something less exciting than ice cream back then, but it's still a cool distinction.Mr. G's is a quint little shop that is pretty big on fun. The inside is not too big and it can get pretty tight in there on nights when the line stretches out the door. Each day Mr. G offers up only a handful of flavors. You won't find crazy designer flavors like Ben & Jerry make. You'll find a pretty typical collection of ice cream flavors. But the homemade work that goes into each batch of ice cream can be detected the second you take your first lick. I'm sure it has to do with the amount of butterfat or whole cream or some science mumbo jumbo like that...I don't know, all I know it is easily the best tasting ice cream I have ever had!The shop offers a few other selections like Root Beer Floats, Milkshakes, Sundaes and even soft serve, but it's the homemade hand dip scoops that have people buzzing about this Summer sweet spot! My personal ultimate indulgence at Mr. G's is a waffle cone with a scoop of Birthday Cake Batter and a scoop of Chocolate Peanut Butter. I always ask for the latter scoop on top so I have easy access to the huge chunks of thick peanut butter floating in the chocolate goodness. My wife like the fruit based flavors like their super fresh tasting Peach or the yummy Dreamsicle, The boys did Mint Oreo while my younger daughter is just happy with anything you put in a cone and then hand her! There is a little bit of seating inside the historic building and plenty of seating outside all around the place. Another big attraction at Mr. G's is the number of Ring and Hook games they have set up on their property. This is the simple game of trying to swing a small ring attached to a string onto a hook on a pole in front of you. If you've never played this game it might sound easy, but it takes a certain skill to get the hang of it. The best part is, it keeps kids mesmerized for hours. My kids have literally spend half an afternoon standing there playing it, while I lounged at a nearby picnic table eating my daily caloric intake and scrolling Facebook. The game has become so popular at Mr. G's that have even organized some tournaments help periodically throughout the season. When you're done with your ice cream you can stroll through the rather large Mr. G's Gift Shop located in a separate building directly behind the ice cream shop. Back there, Mr. G sells Gettysburg souvenirs as well as a few keepsakes of his own place. They also carry a full line of Life Is Good apparel as well.  Mr. G's Old Fashioned Home Made & Soft Serve Ice Cream is a great way to cool off in the middle of a hot summer day. It's located right in the middle of all the tourist fun of historic Gettysburg at 404 Baltimore St. [...]

Chalk It Up!


Our town hosts an event every year called Chalk It Up where everybody is invited to the downtown area and given a square of sidewalk and some sidewalk chalk and create a temporary work of art. Everybody from little kids to professional artists come out and make all kinds of cool creations on the walkways in front of the downtown businesses. We've been wanting to take part in it for years, this year we finally made it down. The kids had a blast. Here's a look at our process and our finished product (which we were all pretty proud of!)[...]