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Week In Review

The 168 Turnaround: Football, Bieber, And Why Catholics Have It Easy

THIS WEEK: Feb 6 – Feb 12, 2011

IMMACULATE MACHINE: No one will ever mistake me for an indie hipster.  While many of the musicians I listen to are, technically, on independent labels, they aren’t truly “Indie”—or so I’m told.  Now and again, though, I’ll stumble across a “true” indie band whose music sparks my interest.  Such is the case with BC rockers Immaculate Machine.  Unfortunately, as of this past Tuesday, Immaculate Machine is officially broken up.  From a post on their blog, the band says, “You may have figured out, from our extended absence from the internet and touring, that we are no longer a band. It took a while to admit to ourselves that we had broken up, but we have all shifted our priorities to other projects.”  Sad, but—as the cliché runs—their music lives on.  Check out their video for the song “Jarhand,” and if you like what you hear, head over to their MySpace page.

CANADA READS: On Wednesday, Terry Fallis’ political novel Best Laid Plans was chosen as the winner of 2011’s Canada Reads.  The annual battle of the books competition has five celebrity panellists defend what they believe is the most essential Canadian novel.  Previous winners include Nicolas Dickner’s Nikolski and Lawrence Hill’s The Book of Negroes, among many others.  Personally, while I love the idea of promoting great Canadian fiction, I find much of the debates to be shallow and “Issue”-centred, and never really digging into what makes these books great works of fiction.  Nevertheless, this year’s win is particularly interesting, considering the obstacles Fallis overcame in landing a publisher and making it to the 2011 Canada Reads top five.  For the full story, click here.

THE SUPER BOWL: If you like football, then the Super Bowl is definitely your thing.  If, like me, you don’t like football, but do like general entertainment and pop culture, then the Super Bowl can also be your thing…sometimes.  According to most viewers, this year’s halftime show (featuring the Black Eyed Peas, Slash, and Usher) was lacklustre, and I’d have to agree (check it out here, and judge for yourself).  But there were a number of great ads and great movie promos.  I’m not a Best Buy shopper, but their Ozzy vs. Bieber ad made me smile.  And despite how much I dislike the first two Transformers movies, the promo spot for Transformers: Dark of the Moon is a handful of exploding goodness (for all ads, click here; for all movie promos, click here.)

CONFESSION APP: Are you a Catholic in need of confession?  By any chance, do you also own an iphone or ipad?  Rest easy, then: while “Confession: A Roman Catholic App” can’t grant forgiveness (I guess you still need a priest for that), it can (allegedly) help Catholics through the act of confessing, offering a personalized examination of conscience and a step-by-step guide to the sacrament.  I’m not Catholic and I don’t own a cellphone, and yet I’m amused nonetheless.  Apparently, however, the Vatican is not amused—who’d have thought?  See here for the full story.

X-MEN: FIRST CLASS: There have been four X-Men movies so far, and only one of them (X2) was any good.  But I’m a sucker for the X-Men story line, and plan on seeing the next instalment, X-Men: First Class.  This new film (a prequel to the previous films) is set in the 1960s and focuses on the early relationship between Professor X and Magneto.  This past Thursday, the first trailer hit the web, and the movie looks promising.  Mind you, I’m a fan of both James McAvoy (Professor X) and Michael Fassbender (Magneto).  It also doesn’t hurt that X-Men: First Class was directed by Matthew Vaughn (director of Kick Ass and Stardust, among other films).

WIN OF THE WEEK: Slip and Slide
Really, there’s nothing I can say here—just watch: childhood fun put to extraordinary proportions.

FAIL OF THE WEEK: Molotov Cocktail Thrower
As proven this week in Egypt, protests can sometimes affect a great deal of change.  Still, it’s always best to protest peacefully—no one actually wants to go down in flames.


The 168 Turnaround is a week-in-review column, a place for me to reflect on the week’s most interesting pop culture news items.  If it mattered to me or I think it might matter to you, then it will be here.  If I’ve overlooked an important news item, or if you have a comment or question, please leave a response below.  Thank you for reading.


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