Where’d everything go? We’ve got teleporting Civil War soldiers, car racers passing on, vanishing bands, and a conclusion to our alien sex orgy. You can’t leave anything alone for a second or it’ll disappear.
Movie: John Carter
We all thought that Duke Nukem Forever and Chinese Democracy were the ultimate in vaporware, but those were merely a couple decades in the hopper. Ever heard of a guy called Edgar Rice Burroughs? (Best known for writing this song, we think.) Anyways, he was first working on an animated adaptation of his A Princess of Mars novel back in 1931 – but audience testers went poorly, and so the project never got out of development. Fast forward to 2004, when Robert Rodriguez picked up the project, followed by Kerry Conran, Jon Favreau, and eventually Andrew Stanton of Pixar taking the director’s chair. Stanton’s first non-Pixar production for Disney finds him showing off the tale of a Civil War vet with crazy alien stories – but also, crazy alien gold. Taylor Kitsch of Friday Nights Lights stars, and Samantha Morton, William Dafoe, Brian Cranston and Lynn Collins providing a solid backing cast.
While NASCAR gets plenty of fame around these parts, it’s important to remember there are two sports we must begrudgingly admit America is not the best at 100% of the time, and only one of them is soccer. The other, with all respect to the Intimidator and the fine racers of IndyCar, is auto racing, particularly that of the F1 Series. Costing roughly one bajillion dollars per car, the sport is that of the uber-rich, and technological improvements sometimes mean a great driver gets whupped by a fancier car (they have their Jeff Gordons too). But sometimes the talent can overcome any mechanical handicaps, and sometimes that talent is based on having big brass balls. Probably the most daring, aggressive, and competitive race to grace the face of the planet, Ayrton Senna was the winningest racer of the modern era. He also feuded so badly with one-time teammate (and his best rival for G.O.A.T. F1 racer) Alain Prost that the man signed with another racing team on the specific condition that they never allow Senna to join them. Add in feuds with the president of FIA, the third-winningest record in F1 history, and the fact that he did all of this before his death on the track at age 34, and the story of Senna is definitely one worth watching.
Album: Bruce Springsteen - Wrecking Ball
It’s been over three years, but the Boss is back. For the 17th album in his catalog, Springsteen’s brought a little gospel, a little roots guitar, but he has not brought the E Street Band. Aside from a Pete Seeger tribute album, Wrecking Ball marks only the second time Springsteen has flown solo — how does he fare? Well, truth be told, it’s not totally solo — the last tracks Clarence Clemons ever put down are here (on the title track and “Land of Hope and Dreams”) and Steven Van Zandt, Max Weinberg, and Patti Scialfa all make appearances. For more of his anti-corporate vitriol, Springsteen has brought on a peculiar ally – Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello tastefully contributes to several songs (with much more success than certain other recent generation-spanning collaborations that come to mind). Lead single “We Take Care of Our Own” rocks out in a manner that could win over an Arcade Fire crowd in seconds.
Video Game: Mass Effect 3