Articles on this Page
- 12/31/12--15:05: _Mr. Mickey: The Top...
- 01/03/13--10:30: _Guys I'm a Little E...
- 01/03/13--10:45: _Eight Items or Less...
- 01/03/13--11:45: _Eddie Huang: Bao Down
- 01/03/13--12:35: _Our Guide to All th...
- 01/03/13--13:15: _First Jokes, Southl...
- 01/03/13--13:55: _Line Portraits of I...
- 01/04/13--04:30: _Morning Funnies: Ti...
- 01/04/13--07:15: _FYI, Bizarre Inc.'s...
- 01/04/13--09:00: _Local Natives' Silv...
- 01/04/13--09:27: _Style Scraps: Jenni...
- 01/04/13--10:30: _Eight Items or Less...
- 01/04/13--13:00: _A '90s Hip-Hop Girl...
- 01/04/13--13:30: _Our Predictions for...
- 01/04/13--14:08: _Corgi GIFs and More...
- 01/04/13--14:30: _Friday Superlatives...
- 01/07/13--06:30: _Morning Funnies: Mo...
- 01/07/13--08:20: _Laura Mvula's "She"...
- 01/07/13--09:00: _Off Duty: David Chang
- 01/07/13--09:20: _Style Scraps: Vitto...
- 12/31/12--15:05: Mr. Mickey: The Top Eight YouTube Videos That Always Make Me Smile
- 01/03/13--10:30: Guys I'm a Little Embarrassed to Admit I Want to Have Sex With
- 01/03/13--10:45: Eight Items or Less: 50 Cent Weighs in on Fake Jewelry
- 01/03/13--11:45: Eddie Huang: Bao Down
- 01/03/13--12:35: Our Guide to All the Celebrity Cameos on Portlandia's Third Season
- 01/03/13--13:55: Line Portraits of Icons on Deer Dana's Tees
- 01/04/13--07:15: FYI, Bizarre Inc.'s "I'm Gonna Get You" Is The Ultimate Party Jam
- 01/04/13--09:00: Local Natives' Silver Linings
- 01/04/13--10:30: Eight Items or Less: Robot Combat League Premieres Next Month
- 01/04/13--13:00: A '90s Hip-Hop Girls Playlist
- 01/04/13--13:30: Our Predictions for Season Three of Downton Abbey
- 01/04/13--14:08: Corgi GIFs and More...
- 01/04/13--14:30: Friday Superlatives: The Holiday Vacation Edition
- 01/07/13--06:30: Morning Funnies: More Killer Goat Super Bowl Commercials, Please
- 01/07/13--08:20: Laura Mvula's "She" Is Our Music Video of the Day
- 01/07/13--09:00: Off Duty: David Chang
We have been hounding Mickey for weeks to turn in his annual year-end "Guys I'm a Little Embarrassed to Admit I Want To Have Sex With" list and, today, we got an email from him saying he can't think of any men from this year that he's embarrassed he's attracted to (OH PLEASE) and submitted this list of his favorite YouTube videos instead. While we know in our heart of hearts that Mickey could easily think up at least 50 completely inappropriate men that he said he wanted to sleep with this year, reading this dashed-off roundup of his favorite, completely untimely videos makes us remember just how much we absolutely love and adore Mr. Mickey. Number 8 really seals the deal.
1."Hollywood Hoarder: Judy to the Rescue" by Punchy Players
Punchy Players have done a whole series of these montages videos often featuring Judy Garland, Ann Miller and Lucille Ball. The first one I saw was the Judy and Liza Cream of Wheat video which is a legendary classic. Being a bit of a hoarder myself, my current favorite is this clip where Judy (usually portrayed as a victim) comes to the rescue of tap-dance Queen Annie Miller.
2. "Acompaname" by Rocio Durcal and Enrique Guzman
The late Rocio Durcal is one of my favorite Spanish singers. She was sort of the Annette Funicello of Spain in the 1960s, a spunky girl-next-door cutie. I'm just crazy for this love song she sings with Enrique Guzman. So romantic in a goofy old-school way. Rocio's always adorable.
3. Autograph Annie and Celebrity Lu
Despite that fact that she's a big Republican, I really can't get enough of Ann-Margret. I love an old-school Las Vegas-act type star and, back in the day, Ann did fabulous variety show-style TV specials with guests like Lucille Ball. I don't always love Lucy (she ruined the movie Mame for me) but she is so relaxed and irresistible in this number that I can't stop watching it.
4. Carol Channing & Pearl Bailey, "Elegance" (Starting at 1:26)
In other TV specials of yesteryear news, one of the nuttiest shows ever had to be the special that Carol Channing and Pearl Bailey did together. Carol played the original Dolly Levi in Broadway's Hello, Dolly! and Bailey replaced her in an all-black version of the show. "Elegance" is a song from Hello, Dolly! that Jerry Herman wrote special lyrics for in this hilarious 'battle' style duet. It's pure heaven.
5. Gloria Swanson and Janis Joplin on the Dick Cavett Show.
They don't make stars like these two any more. Not to be an old fuddy-duddy but God the 60s were cuckoo crazy!
6. "Let Go" by Mitzi Gaynor
I'm not generally a huge Mitzi fan but I do worship Bob Mackie and this dress he designed for her is one of the most gorgeous things I've ever seen. Also, Mitzi was SUCH a pro that you have to hand it to her. And, hello, a chorus line of 1969 gays in tuxedos is heavenly.
7. "Pretty Girl Rock" by Keri Hilson
Just to prove I'm not totally stuck in the 1960s, here I am being fresh and au courant with a pop hit from 2010. I think this video is so fun and well done. I'm a fan of every artist Keri pays homage to and the song is so upbeat and dancey it always puts a big goofy smile on my face.
8. "It's Our Time to Shine" from Mad Monster Party
I saw this animated monster movie when I was a kid and recorded this song from the TV using my old-school cassette recorder with a handheld microphone. I thought it was the MOST glamorous and chic thing I'd ever seen: a red-haired vixen in a gold lame cheongsam and a tap-dancing vampire? Pure Magic!
MORE YEAR-END LISTS:
The Best + Worst Films of 2012
Listen to PAPER's 2012
The Top 15 Celebrity Bulges of 2012
Our Top 10 Year-End Music Lists
Kim Hastreiter: 10 Things That Inspired Me in 2012
Rebecca Smeyne's Favorite Photos of the Year
Chris Black's Favorite Blogs of 2012
Julie Besonen: The Top 10 Dishes I Can't Get Out of My Head
Alia Akkam: The Top 10 Cocktails I Drank this Year
The Top 10 GIFs of the Year
The Best Spreads in PAPER This Year
Quote, Unquote: The Best of What Was Said In PAPER This Year
Peter Davis: My Top 10 Party Moments of 2012
The editors at Papermag have been hounding me to do a list of the celebrity men whom I'm embarrassed to want to sleep with. Unfortunately I've arrived at a point in my life where I'm not embarrassed to admit anything, let alone the fact that I'm horny for a TV Soap Opera priest. Below, my top 8 only vaguely shameful crushes.
1. Father Eric Brady from Days of Our Lives.
OK, so he's not a real person but I suppose one shouldn't run around announcing they want to perform unnatural acts on a man of the cloth, TV or otherwise.
2. Larry Caputo Sr and Larry Caputo Jr from Long Island Medium.
This is the first time I've had a father and son on my list. It was simply too difficult to choose which Caputo makes my panties moister. One is the perfect bike daddy and the other is the perfect Guido college-boy fantasy.
3. Mayor Bloomberg.
What can I say, power is the ultimate aphrodisiac. Throw in the Mayor's diminutive status and ya got a real sexy Napoleon moment happening. Call me Josephine!
Photo by Kristen Artz/New York City Mayor's Office via the New York Times.
4. James Brolin.
I don't know why I'm including James Brolin on this list. I think most people find him super-sexy. I guess I'm just afraid to tangle with his wife, Barbra Streisand -- them nails could do serious damage.
5. All of One Direction.
Naturally Zayn is my favorite, followed by Louis. This does make me embarrassed because it's borderline NAMBLA for an old fart like me to lust after barely legal boy toys like them.
6. Eddie Cibrian.
I just saw this soap star turned homewrecker on Hot in Cleveland, my favorite sitcom on TVLand, playing a Brony. (I'm not kidding.) His body wasn't what it was in the seminal film Living Out Loud, in which he played a masseuse/escort, but he still looked good enough to lick. I mean, eat.
What can I say? I have a weakness for a muscle-bound metalhead who wears sheer blouses and has a kitty at home. So sue me.
Eddie Huang always knew he had a book in him. "Growing up in Florida, I was like, 'I can't be the only one that feels this way about America,'" he says. "Everybody tells you it's the greatest country in the world and I was like, 'I can't be the only one that feels like I was sold a bag of shit.'" But it was only after the New York Times gave a rare goose egg to his (since-shuttered) restaurant Xiao Ye that Huang, blogging about his disappointment from an Internet café, got an email from an agent.
Huang's memoir, Fresh Off the Boat, takes him from eating soup dumplings on his sixth birthday to hot-boxing his Lower East Side sandwich shop Baohaus, which has been serving Taiwanese-style pork buns to a hip-hop soundtrack since Christmas 2009. Along the way, Huang picks up brining techniques, Jordan sneakers, Swiftian satire, a felony assault charge and a J.D. "I wanted Baohaus to be a place the neighborhood embraced," Huang writes. And indeed, the whole city fell not just for Huang's bao (which New York magazine listed as the city's best buns) but for his brash, slang-inflected opinions on cooking, which migrated from his blog to a web series on vice.com and an occasional column in the New York Observer. Fans already familiar with Huang's persona might be surprised by incidents of violence throughout the book, like when he avenges an attack on his younger brother: "I beat that kid like he was...Reaganomics, the Counting Crows and Moby-Dick all rolled into one." As he now explains, "I'm a funny guy, but there's definitely two sides to who I am. I wanted to write about my experience because on one level it's the American story. On another level it's the Asian-American story. But on another level it's also asking, is there an essential self?"
At the book's end, Huang writes, "I just gave you the blueprint." But it's hard to imagine anyone even trying to follow in his steps. "The blueprint is that there isn't a blueprint," Huang says now. "The blueprint is to go out there and find your own America."
Fresh Off the Boat is out January 29 from Spiegel & Grau
It's been far too long since our thoughts have turned to Kath and Dave's dog-parenting, Toni and Candace's bathroom policy, or Lance and Nina's safe words so thank god(dess) that Portlandia's third season premieres tomorrow. There's been a lot of scuttlebutt about what celebrities and musicians Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein have lined up this go-round (following the likes of Aimee Mann, St. Vincent, Steve Buscemi, Kristen Wiig, Miranda July, Tim Robbins, Andy Samberg and Eddie Vedder -- to name but a few) so we've done some digging and have come up with a guide to whom you can expect to see next in the City of Roses. And, if the information below feels like it contains too many season three spoilers, just (telepathically) shout "cacao" and we'll stop.
New Guest Stars
Chloë Sevigny will play Fred and Carrie's third roommate who, we hear, may cause some tension in their living arrangement (and get her picture taken by the Mayor, apparently). [Photo via IFC]
Roseanne Barr will take over the mayor's office after Kyle MacLachlan's goes missing (again). Fred Armisen told EW of her two-episode arc:
Through a temp agency, [Barr] fills in as mayor...She does things in the most efficient way. Because the character didn't grow up in Portland, she doesn't have the same understanding of how things go. She's more like, 'Look, this is a city, so we have to do those things that cities do.' We wanted an outsider to come in and say, 'What is this place?'[Photo by Frank Di Marco via EW]
On the recent winter special, which aired last month, comedians Jim Gaffigan and Matt Lucas (Bridesmaids, Little Britain) played a bearish couple who own a fledgling stew shack called Stu's Stews (Featuring Donald).
Actress Rose Byrne will play Fred's love interest.
Also on the winter special was SNL's Bobby Moynihan, who added another layer to feminist bookstore co-owner Candace (Armisen) when he appeared as her son, asking his mom and her colleague Toni (Brownstein) to watch his newborn baby and demurring when the Women & Women First gals pressure him into buying a vagina pillow.
Comedian Patton Oswalt will play an elusive Evite user whose fake RSVPs have become legendary among the electronic invitation circuit.
Juliette Lewis is reportedly appearing as someone's cuckoo ex-girlfriend (here's hoping she used to date Brownstein's Lance).
MTV All-Stars Kurt Loder, Tabitha Soren and Matt Pinfield will play themselves in a sketch that features righteous bike messenger Spyke (Armisen) and his better half Iris (Brownstein) recruiting the VJs to stage a takeover of MTV and to bring back music programming to the station's airwaves. [Photo via Vulture]
Jack White made a cryptic appearance in the winter special, arriving to a home recording studio owned by a vintage music gear-obsessed character played by Armisen. (Ed note: This overall scene is pretty great and we highly recommend you watch it below.)
No Doubt have a fun little cameo playing themselves after they're hired by Brownstein's butch biker dude, Lance, to perform for his girlfriend Nina on her birthday.
SNL writer, PAPER Beautiful Person and closet smoocher Mike O'Brien and actress Maria Thayer (who plays Susie on Adult Swim's Walker,Texas Ranger spoof Eagleheart and Jack McBrayer's amorous wife in Forgetting Sarah Marshall) will play a young couple who are prepared to go into debt in order to attend an outlandish birthday party, hosted by the aformentioned Nina.
We also hear Bill Hader, the Dirty Projectors, Dinosaur Jr's J Mascis, George Wendt, and tennis champ Martina Navratilova will be heading out (North) West but you'll have to watch season three to find out their roles and where they fit in on the Portlandia spectrum.
Returning Guest Stars
Kyle MacLachlan and Jeff Goldblum are returning as the WASP-gone-weird mayor and (we assume) the eccentric owner of an artisanal knot store, respectively. Comedian Kumail Nanjiani will also be back, this time forgoing his role as a waiter at Around the World in 80 Plates for an equally maddening bank employee character who helps Mike O'Brien and Maria Thayer's couple take out a "birthday loan."
And, in case you missed the winter special last month, below are a few choice clips featuring cameos by Bobby Moynihan and Jack White. Also head over to Eater to watch Jim Gaffigan and Matt Lucas play the hirsute stew-slinging couple.
Bottom line? We can't wait for season three.
Jack White in "The Studio"
Bobby Moynihan in "Vagina Pillows"
FILM: The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas at Nitehawk Cinema
This installment of Nitehawk's Country Brunchin' series features a screening of early '80s Dolly Parton classic The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, complete with a pre-screening performance from Dolly Parton cover band, Doll Parts. As long as they keep putting together amazing programming like this, Nitehawk should have no fear of the cineplex that just moved in down the street.
Nitehwawk Cinema,136 Metropolitan Ave., Williamsburg, Brooklyn. 11: 30 a.m. $16.00.
MUSIC: Zs at Public Assembly
Public Assembly (front room), 70 North Sixth Street, Brooklyn. (718) 384-4586. 8 p.m. $10. 21+
Welcome to You Should Check Out..., a weekly blog in which Chris Black of Words For Young Men and Done to Death Projects tells you about something or someone he really likes and that he thinks you'll like too.
Deer Dana is a line of illustrated t-shirts and bags made in New York City by friends Dana Veraldi and Kevin Tekinel. Their new collection just launched and features some choice subjects: Raf Simons, David Lynch, Alfred Hitchcock, Choupette (Karl Lagerfeld's beloved cat) and two of my personal favorites Sade and Grace Jones, which were done in collaboration with R&B singer Miguel. If none of those float your boat check out their past designs, where you can find everyone from Rick Ross to Bill Cunningham. See them all online or at Opening Ceremony in NYC, LA and Tokyo.
Extras from Tina Fey and Amy Poehler's Golden Globes promos. Soexcitedforthis. [Vulture]
Joe Biden was in his element at the mock Senate swearing-in yesterday. As new and returning senators brought their family members to pose for photos with the V.P., Good Time Pappy Joe worked his zero-intimacy-issues magic on old women, old men, young women, young men and babies. No one was safe and everyone had their faces caressed. [Via Gawker and @MichaelHayes]
In case you missed it, a local station in Orange County had the most wondrously disastrous live New Year's Eve special featuring Jamie Kennedy, Shannon Elizabeth, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and Macy Gray, who did *the* best countdown of all time. Gray's part starts at the 2:45 mark but you really need to watch the whole clip. OH MY GOD, THIS VIDEO. It's spectacular. [LAist via Dlisted]
Kansas City weekly The Pitch's ode to hometown HOTTIE Paul Rudd. [Via PenisPoilce]
Baguette koozie via The Jogging.
Mr. Bean and baby Christian Bale. [ThisIsNotPorn]
Drink this. [CoolDogs]
Oh honey, you shouldn't have. [CoinFarts]
Hat of your dreams. [Via Zeroing; Photo by Gilmar Smith]
Not to be too Ziggy, but TGIF. [Brogue]
Yo DJ, pump this party! We racked our collective brain over the holidays trying to remember who recorded today's oldie-but-goodie. We couldn't recall any of the lyrics and tried to hum the melody with Shazam, SoundHound and Midomi. No luck. Finally our trusty editor Elizabeth came up with it: "I'm Gonna Get You" by Bizarre Inc. The UK trio actually scored a #1 club hit with the song back in 1992 and it features vocals by Angie Brown, a prolific (and brilliant) singer who's worked with everybody from the Rolling Stones to Fatboy Slim.
The past few years have been a bit of a whirlwind for Local Natives. The Los Angeles-based band was relatively unknown when they recorded their debut album Gorilla Manor in 2009; in a matter of months, they were on the Billboard Top 200 chart, touring with Arcade Fire and playing festivals with the likes of Thom Yorke.
"The success that we've seen has been, for the lack of a better phrase, a dream come true," says keyboardist and singer Kelcey Ayer. "The struggle came afterwards."
First came the stresses of the road, which injected unprecedented tension into the tight-knit quintet. In March 2011, the band announced that they had parted ways with bassist Andy Hamm, citing personal and professional differences. Then in June, Ayer's mother passed away. "It was a weird juxtaposition of really happy stuff and really dark stuff," says Ayer.
Local Natives may have lost loved ones, but they've gained some new friends. While on tour with the National, they befriended the band's keyboardist and guitarist Aaron Dessner, whom both Ayer and guitarist and vocalist Ryan Hahn now refer to as an "older brother." Dessner went on to coproduce their second album, Hummingbird, most of which was recorded in his home studio in Brooklyn's Ditmas Park. "His suggestions were really earthy and natural and classic-sounding," says Hahn. "It definitely wouldn't be the same album without him," says Ayer.
The album has the sense of an awakening -- of truth learned and maturity earned -- and a sedate, deliberate quality that makes the more energetic Gorilla Manor seem downright spastic in comparison.
Now the band is on tour once again -- and, surprisingly, they're happy to be back on the road. "I think we're all ready," says Hahn. "We love touring, we love playing live. That's kind of our thing."
Hummingbird is out Jan. 29 via Frenchkiss/Infectious.
(Above, l-r): Taylor Rice, Ryan Hahn, Matthew Frazier, Kelcey Ayer
In the latest issue of Haper's Bazaar, bajillionaire and huge entourage-having Jennifer Lopez talks about keeping her life 'simple' thusly: "So I pack my luggage, or dress myself, or comb my kids' hair, pick up their clothes -- that makes our life beautiful, you know?" By the way, a couple paragraphs later -- when talking abut her famous Versace dress -- she said: "I have that at home. The other day, my housekeeper put it on a mannequin in my spa, where I get my hair and makeup done. She sent me a picture." Have fun thinking about that while you're working your 9 to 5 and going home to cook dinner for your kids and clean your apartment. [via Dlisted]
One side-effect of the peaceful settlement between Tory and Chris Burch? Tory Burch is now a billionaire. [via The Cut]
Kate Moss is officially one of the faces of Givenchy! Amazingly, this is the first time she's modeled for the brand, and we must say, she looks great. [via Fashionista]
We're very much looking forward to Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s, an exhibit at the Victoria and Albert Museum that showcases the clothes kids wore to clubs in London which launched the careers of several prominent designers, including Vivienne Westwood and John Galliano. [via FastCo Design; hat tip to Done to Death]
Essie now makes nail art! They just released this line of Essie "Sleek Stick" nail wraps. You can buy 'em here. [via Fashionista]
Naomi Campbell was allegedly attacked and robbed on a Paris street while she was getting into a cab. That sucks, but mostly it just seems weird that she was taking a cab, instead of being personally escorted into her town car/Maserati/Batmobile. [via Page Six]
Check out this awesome Tumblr, Pokémon X Fashion, which combines your favorite fashion ads and editorials with your favorite embarrassing middle school fad. [via The Daily Beast]
Behold: Tailly, the tail that wags when you get excited. This is a big coup for cat accessories. [via Fashionista]
The pent-up aggression anthem. Can't you imagine Marnie warming up to this boxer-style just before the giant fight at the end of Season One?
Ray totally wants to "mack and eat jelly beans, run in the cold with no jeans" with Shoshanna. The most innocent of the Girls, this uber-romantic rap song is surely her theme.
Downton Abbey returns this weekend, Downton Abbey returns this weekend, Downton Abbey
returns this weekend! Yes, we know the third season has been available
in the UK for a while now; yes, we know we could've easily watched the
entire season (and the Christmas special) already online; yes, we
know season spoilers are all over the place but dammit, we can't wait
to switch PBS on Sunday night with a modicum of suspended disbelief over
what will go down. For those of you who, like us, have withstood the
temptation to watch the Edwardian soap opera online, here's a little
refresher course on what happened last season and our (mostly
half-baked) predictions for what will take place during this one.
Where we left off: Just as we thought that season two would end with all of Lady Mary's little sighs going to naught, she (and all of us) got what she wanted: an engagement to Cousin Matthew. This turn of events was a welcome relief, given that most of the season showed the eldest Crawley daughter held in the clutches of the horrendous media tycoon, Richard Carlisle. Oh, and after coming clean about her long-ago one night stand with the dashing-but-doomed Kemal Pamuk, now all the important people in her life (Matthew, Lord Grantham) finally know that she's no longer a virgin.
Predictions: After marrying Cousin Matthew, she becomes pregnant with their child.
Cousin Matthew Crawley
Where we left off: The man's had quite a season: war injuries, temporary paralysis, a dead fiancée, and an eleventh hour (re-)engagement to Lady Mary, in that order.
Predictions: Dan Stevens isn't coming back for season four (or may make an appearance in the first episode only) so it's likely Julian Fellowes will kill Cousin Matthew off. In our minds, he'll meet his demise after an old, undiagnosed war wound (perhaps a piece of shrapnel stuck up his butt) becomes dislodged and he hemorrhages to death. Just as the situation seems like it can't get any more tragic, we learn that Lady Mary is carrying his child.
Where we left off: After a season spent learning how to drive, working on a farm (and kissing the farmer), and, finally, helping nurse injured soldiers (one of whom may or may not have been her love, Patrick Crawley, the rightful heir to Downton), Lady Edith winds up receiving a Christmastime visit from her former suitor, Sir Anthony Strallan. To our relief, he acknowledges that he's aware that Edith's former marriage 'refusal' was a prank by Lady Mary but, to our disappointment, he also tells her that she shouldn't marry him, as he's much older than her and now disabled as a result of the war.
Predictions: Edith finally gets a suitor to put a ring on it. That said, we're torn between two scenarios: 1) she convinces Sir Anthony that she doesn't mind having a May-December marriage with a man who's a semi-invalid and the two get hitched because she is the coolest, saddest Crawley sister or 2) Patrick Gordon (né Crawley) returns and this time he's found evidence to prove to her family that he's really Patrick Crawley. The two rekindle their love, get married, and Lady Edith becomes the next Countess of Grantham and lady of Downton Abbey (thus usurping Lady Mary and Cousin Matthew). Boom.
Where we left off: After a botched elopement with Tom Branson, Sybil goes on to marry the Irish chauffeur after all and move with him to Dublin. By the end of the season, we learn that she's knocked up.
Predictions: After having a baby, Lady Sybil convinces Branson that the two should follow her grandmother, Martha Levinson (Shirley MacLaine), back to America, where the class system matters less and her husband can better make his way in life. Reluctantly, Branson agrees to leave his beloved Ireland and the two move to Manhattan where he gets a reporter post at The New York Times, thanks to the help of Grandma Levinson. Sybil raises her brood on the Upper East Side and becomes intrigued by the burgeoning 1920s-era Greenwich Village jazz and literary scenes.
Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham
Where we left off: The usually upstanding Lord Grantham raised our eyebrows last season by having a PG-13 tryst with a maid while his wife suffered from the Spanish flu. Thankfully, he came to his senses and ended the affair before we saw the twosome do anything serious. On the paternal front, the head of Downton begrudgingly gave his blessing for Sybil to marry his chauffeur and provided some damn good dad advice to Lady Mary, when he urged her to call off her engagement to Carlisle after seeing how poorly the man treated his daughter.
Predictions: Once a cheater, always a cheater: he runs into the maid he kissed in town and the two embark on round two of their affair.
Cora, Countess of Grantham
Where we left off: After letting her estate be turned into a war hospital, recovering from the Spanish flu and seeing her youngest daughter Sybil marry an Irish radical, the end of season two suggested that the Countess will finally be able to relax: she's going to become a grandmother and her eldest daughter will finally be marrying the heir to Downton Abbey.
Predictions: After she discovers her husband's affair, she has one too. Her opportunity arrives after she's introduced to a socialist politician she meets at a dinner party but before consummating the relationship, she thinks better of it and remains faithful.
Violet Crawley, the Dowager Countess of Grantham
Where we left off: Still feisty, Violet spent most of season two in the state that comes most naturally to her: meddling. She helped get Cousin Isobel out of Cora's hair by encouraging her to aid war refugees far away from Downton; she told Cousin Matthew that she believed Lady Mary was still in love with him; and attempted to dissuade her daughter, Rosamund, from marrying one of the truly ickiest bit players we've yet seen pass through DA's hallowed halls (though, unfortunately, it took Rosamund catching the man embracing a maid -- rather than her mother's warnings -- to call the engagement off).
Predictions: Violet spends the next season continuing to be an awesome mega-bitch and exchanging withering barbs with Cora's mother, Martha Levinson. Things come to a head, however, when she gets wind of Martha's dalliance with a much-younger bachelor. Aghast at the impropriety of the whole thing, she sabotages the relationship, which leads to a Dynasty-style catfight between her and Martha. Someone gets hit in the face with an old-timey phone. It is ugly.
Cousin Isobel Crawley
Where we left off: Thanks to Violet's machinations, Cousin Matthew's mother (and Cora's frenemy) has abandoned her plans to turn Downton into a full-time convalescence center and has left the estate to assist in relief efforts on behalf of war refugees. Cora's happy and so are we because we needed a break from Cousin Isobel, too.
Predictions: Our favorite buttinsky returns from her post assisting war refugees and manages to put her meddling to use: she helps Bates appeal his conviction and get out of jail.
Where we left off: After endlessly trying to secure a divorce from his demented wife Vera (and even offering to pay her all his money), he has to contend with the news that she plans to blackmail him and the Crawleys about Lady Mary's tryst with Kemal Pamuk. When that gets thwarted, she kills herself with rat poison instead, allowing Bates to marry Anna. The downside to his new-found marital bliss, however, is that he gets indicted -- and subsequently convicted -- for her death.
Predictions: He'll befriend a fellow prisoner who's actually an alcoholic, opiate-addicted writer and the two scheme about how Bates will get his freedom back. Their friendship turns sour, however, when his new friend falls off the wagon and attempts to engage in a sexually-charged fist fight that leads to black eyes and bruised egos. Eventually, Bates gets released from jail (see: Cousin Isobel, Anna) and never talks to his friend again. The friend moves to Paris and goes on to become one of the most celebrated writers of the twentieth century.
Where we left off: Anna and Mistah Bates tied the knot and we were all subjected to THIS scene but the honeymoon phase gets cut short when Bates gets accused of murdering his crazy ex-wife (see above). After Bates gets convicted and sentenced to jail, Anna is now determined to prove that he was framed. (Honestly, Anna's storyline is one of the worst/most boring storylines on the show, and it's a shame because Joanne Froggatt is great.)
Predictions: With help from Cousin Isobel, Anna works to successfully get Bates released from jail. Empowered by this experience, she becomes interested in social activism, particularly in criminal justice reform.
Where we left off: Last we left Mr. Carson, he was still just being an all-around great guy, offering to give away Daisy when she married William, fretting over the Crawley girls (and refusing to work for the scummy Carlisle) and keeping an eye on Thomas. Aaaannd that is it. Time to develop this character.
Predictions: Another member of his vaudevillian past returns and this time it's a former dancer who reveals that the two have a 24-year-old love child. Carson huffs and puffs but ultimately receives the news with quiet acceptance.
Where we left off: Mrs. Hughes had a great little second season. She inserted herself into a paternity saga involving sultry maid Ethel and a douchey soldier who gets Ethel pregnant while he's convalescing at Downton.
Predictions: She runs into Ethel and her bastard child and the two resume old discussions about how the young woman can provide for her baby. Mrs. Hughes writes to the child's grandparents, and learns from the grandmother that her husband has died. The widow, who has secretly felt more magnanimity than her husband toward Ethel during the whole saga, agrees to help raise the child and let Ethel live -- and work -- in her fancy home. For a brief moment, Mrs. Hughes feels blissfully content -- until Cora informs her that they'll be throwing a dinner party for thirty guests.
Where we left off: After enlisting as a medic in the army to avoid fighting in the war, Thomas realizes that that's not the vaycay he was hoping it would be, and purposefully gets shot in the hand to get sent home to Downton Abbey. Upon his return, he goes back to being a tortured gay cartoon villain who is always lurking and scheming and overhearing things, mwahahaha. For a second, we think his grinch-y heart is melting when he appears to fall in love with a wounded soldier; knowing his life will never be the same again, the soldier ultimately commits suicide and we're left with a wrenching scene that shows Thomas weeping. But, before you can say "Mistah Bates," Thomas is right back to his dastardly ways. Our final impressions of the conniving servant include his selling rationed items on the black market and hiding Lord Grantham's dog so he could pretend to find him and be promoted to valet.
Predictions: After O'Brien's nephew comes to work at Downton, Thomas engages in 1920s-style cruising and the two start an illicit romance conducted in the halls and cellars of Downton, which drives a wedge between himself and O'Brien.
Where we left off: After causing Countess Cora to miscarry during the first season, Mrs. O'Brien is kind of just laying low, trying to be less of a dick to everyone. She helps Thomas get his foot back in the door at Downton and she is kind to a shell-shocked valet.
Predictions: With her nephew working at Downton, O'Brien's softer -- dare we suggest? -- more maternal side comes out and a series of flashbacks reveal her past and the doomed relationship that hardened her.
Where we left off: Poor Daisy really got put through the ringer, what with her unrequited love for Thomas and William's unrequited love for her. (R.I.P. William!) Despite marrying William out of guilt (seriously, can we see one female character besides stupid Mary be in a relationship that doesn't come with a cost?), she develops a sweet relationship with his father, who promises to take care of her.
Predictions: Daisy has a crush on O'Brien's nephew (who, it turns out, is bisexual) and enters in a love triangle with the valet and Thomas.
Where we left off: Mrs. Patmore continued to bust Daisy's balls during season two (and strong-armed her into marrying William) but we're treated to some actual character development when we watch her grieve over a nephew killed during the war who, we later learn, was actually shot for cowardice.
Predictions: Mrs. Patmore continues to be a lovable grouch and, after initial resistance, finally gives Daisy a promotion.
The Best, Worst and Weirdest of the Week
Best Dessert I Ate Over the Holidays: The soft-serve ice cream with huckleberry ice at Chicago's BellyQ. THAT SHIT APPEARS IN MY DREAMS. -- Abby Schreiber
Best Thing My 90-Year-Old Grandfather Said to Me While I Was Home Visiting: "I need you to find out if that's really the T-Mobile Girl riding the motorcycle in those commercials." -- Elizabeth Thompson
Best Chanukah Presents I Bought Myself: Greil Marcus's Lipstick Traces and the Toy Dolls' We're Mad: The Anthology -- Jonah Wolf
Sweetest Tribute to Someone We Lost in 2012: The Maurice Sendak tribute by Christoph Neimann in The New York Times Magazine's "Lives They Lived" issue. -- E.T.
Sweetest Tribute to Someone Paper Lost in 2012: Jonathan Ames' remembrance of New York performance art legend and Paper theater critic Tom Murrin, who passed away in March. This was published in our summer issue but I re-read this piece when I was helping put together our Best Quotes of the Year roundup, and it's just really, really lovely. -- E.T.
Best Person I Danced
With Near on NYE: A Spicoli look-alike at the 'Shanghai 2013' warehouse party in Bushwick. -- A.S.
Movie I Watched on Netflix and Later Saw a Blogger Had Compared It to Django Unchained: The Landlord -- J.W.
Best Part of This Week Back From Break: Watching Joe Biden more or less seduce various Senators' family members during the mock Senate swear-ins. -- E.T.
Best 90s TV Show I Got Into Over the Holidays: Ally McBeal -- A.S.
Usually Doritos Superbowl commercials are pretty terrible and just feature some dudes in a boardroom and one dude gets hit in the balls with a sledge hammer and thrown through a plate glass window while the other dudes just stand there eating Doritos and then one says something like, "Guess the meeting's cancelled." But this year they are really stepping it up and have a bunch of ads in the the running for game day, including this goat commercial WHICH THEY MUST CHOOSE. [Business Insider via Jezebel]
Only $19 to have your feet turned into a vagina, folks! [BoobsRadley]
As if Lady Edith doesn't have it bad enough, someone went and made Edithwithgooglyeyes.tumblr.com
The horn-honking is what really makes this video. [LaughingSquid]
In bed! [PenisPolice]
Harold Ramis and Annie Potts on the set of Ghostbusters. Cutest ever. [ThisIsNotPorn]
Not that Wilson! [FYeahDementia]
This is the look. [TheSwingingSixties]
Hey yo, that type looks good. [TallWhitney]
One of the albums that we're really looking forward to in 2013 is the debut by Laura Mvula called Sing to the Moon. The Birmingham, UK, singer has been working with the composer and lyricist Steve Brown (Rumer) as well as with Grammy-winning producer/mixer Tom Elmhirst (Adele, Amy Winehouse) here in NYC at Electric Lady. Last year, Mvula shot this clip -- directed by Damian Weilers -- for a track called "She" in Montagu, South Africa. The album is out on March 4 on RCA.
Each week in our brand new Off Duty series, we'll talk to some of our favorite chefs and industry folk around the country to find out their secret late-night spots where they like to grab a bite and a pint when their kitchens are finally closed. First up: David Chang, chef/founder of the Momofuku empire and editor of food-centric quarterly, Lucky Peach.
What's your favorite joint to grab a bite late at night after your kitchen's closed?
Great NY Noodletown on the Bowery in Chinatown
What's their specialty?
Roast Pork and Roast Duck
What is your favorite item to order there?
Ginger Scallion Noodles
How did you discover this place?
I started going with my friend, Chef Jonathan Benno, who is now the Executive Chef at Lincoln Ristorante.
Any crazy stories from late nights spent there?
I remember one night when I was in a -- let's just say -- surreal state, and found myself sitting across from this family with kids eating tiny black snails. I didn't know what was weirder, the state I was in or the fact that these four-year-old Chinese kids were eating snails right out of the shell.
Great NY Noodletown is located at 28 Bowery, New York
Photo of David Chang by Gabriele Stabile
Very distressing news for the Missoni family: Vittorio Missoni -- who's in charge of marketing for the brand and is regarded as one of the heads of his family -- went missing in Venezuela, along with his wife Maurizia Castiglioni and four others. Authorities are trying to figure out whether they were kidnapped or whether their private jet crashed off of the coast. Here's hoping that everyone is okay. [via Daily Beast]
It turns out that Naomi Campbell was in a limo -- not a cab -- when she got mugged. Thank god that mystery is solved. [via Fashionista]
Emma Stone thinks it's "hilarious" that Vogue named her best dressed of 2012 and gives all the credit to her mom and her stylist, Petra Flannery. She also said this: "I won't dress like a fairy princess, wear a lot of glitter, or anything that makes me look like a Victorian doll. If I could wear those things and not look like Dakota Fanning when she was eight, maybe, but I just don't look good in them." God we love Emma Stone. [via The Cut]
We're slightly creeped out but also can't take our eyes off of Raf Simons' video showcasing his SS '13 collection. Watch at your own risk. [via HypeBeast]
Lori Goldstein plans on making Elle more fashion-oriented, with fantasy and high-concept editorials! We can't wait to see those new shoots, the first of which will appear in the March issue. [via The Cut]
Tom Ford announced that he will stage a runway show that can hold between 500 and 1,000 people! He'll also be inviting bloggers! Nudge nudge, wink wink (please invite us). [via Times UK]
Jenn Rogien, the costume designer of Girls, tries to avoid criticism surrounding her wardrobe decisions, telling The Cut: "I was incredibly thankful to be incredibly busy shooting this show, so I didn't have a lot of time to read a lot of the coverage...I read one piece that was like, 'If I was dressing these characters, I would do everything differently,' and that's when I said, 'Okay, I have to pull myself out of the blogosphere and just focus on making decisions for the characters the way we've been making them all along.'"
Remember when Macy's, Amazon and Sears went through that phase of making an effort to embrace eco-friendly fabrics? Well now they're are all being sued for labeling clothing made of rayon as being made of bamboo. [via Fashionista]