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Week In Review

The 168 Turnaround: Batman, Spider-Man, and Gaga

THIS WEEK: Apr 17 – Apr 23, 2011

THE DARK KNIGHT RISES: More casting news for Christopher Nolan’s final Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises, has hit the web.  For a while, we’ve known that Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Marion Cotillard (both of whom starred in Nolan’s Inception) were involved in the sequel to 2008’s The Dark Knight.  But just who exactly they’d be playing in the film was anyone’s guess (some had Gordon-Levitt playing the Riddler and Cotillard playing Talia al Ghul).  Now, however, comes the official announcement from Warner Bros: Gordon-Levitt will play John Blake, a Gotham City beat cop; and Cotillard will play Miranda Tate, a Wayne Enterprises board member.  Not exactly flashy roles, but I’m willing to trust Nolan on this one.  For more info, head over to Variety.

SPIDER-MAN:  An old saying suggests that if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again.  Sometimes that’s sound advice; other times, however, failure is reason enough to pack it in.  Take Christopher Tierney, for example.  The stuntman, who is one of several to don the Spider-Man mask for the Broadway musical Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark, was forced to leave the show after he was badly injured in a fall during a performance.  And, no, he didn’t just bust an arm.  Tierney fell from twenty-seven feet, and landed in the orchestra pit, suffering a fractured skull and shoulder blade, four broken ribs and three broken vertebrae.  But now, getting back up on that proverbial horse, Tierney will rejoin the show next week (click here for more).  If you ask me, Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark is a lost cause.  The show has had an innumerable amount of problems (technical and otherwise), has had it’s official opening postponed again and again, and is currently shut down while being completely revamped.  Take it from me, Tierney: forget your comeback—get while the getting’s good.

WEIRD AL VS. GAGA: I won’ lie—I didn’t know that Weird Al Yankovic was still making music.  Nevertheless, the wacky musician/satirist made news this week after he took to the Internet, expressing his disappointment that Lady Gaga had not approved his parody of her recent single, “Born This Way.”  Shortly thereafter, however, he returned to his blog, writing, “Gaga’s manager has now admitted that he never forwarded my parody to Gaga—she had no idea at all.  Even though we assumed that Gaga herself was the one making the decision (because, well, that’s what we were TOLD), he apparently made the decision completely on his own. He’s sorry. And Gaga loves the song.”  Good for Al…I guess.  In any event, the track will now appear on Weird Al’s upcoming album.  You can listen to it in the video below.

HOOVER: Not being much of a soap opera fan, I didn’t include the news of ABC’s cancellation of both All My Children and One Life to Live in last week’s The 168 Turnaround.  But new developments have caught my attention, namely Hoover’s decision to pull all of its advertisements from ABC because of the recent soap opera cancellations.  That’s right, the vacuum manufacturer is pulling its ads as a means of protest.  “My wife and mother are both passionate viewers of All My Children and One Life to Live, as are many of my colleagues here at Hoover,” said marketing executive Brian Kirkendall.  “We were and are as disappointed with this news as you are.”  As of this past Friday, Hoover has discontinued all of its ads with ABC, a move that is, to my mind, one of the strangest moves in advertising history.  I get the logic here, but it seems a tad outdated (i.e. women spend their days watching soaps and cleaning; so when their soaps are cancelled, who better to make a stand than a vacuum manufacturer?).

VIDEO OF THE WEEK: Tickling A Penguin
I’m a sucker for all things penguin.  So a video of someone tickling one…well, that my friends is a definite win.  Really, what more can I say?

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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