the national evil 100th postravaganza!

100 hula hoops at once! . . . It’s a metaphor, people. Think!

What’s that sound you hear? Why, that’s the sound of rounds and rounds of thunderous applause leaking out of the National Evil’s head. That’s right—today marks Evil’s 100th post!

A hundred posts! Hard to believe, isn’t it? The Evil is as amazed as anyone; he never thought he’d live to see 25. But here he is, still popping wheelies on his motorcycle of muddled emotions. Dragging from his cigarette of disdain. Swilling from a fifth of arcane wisdom.

But how to celebrate?

With strippers! you cry.

No, no—that is, yes, yes, strippers . . . but how to celebrate in this forum—not in the Evil’s lap, but on your screen? Some might suggest a retrospective look at the first 99 posts. To which Evil hurls a flaming Molotov cocktail of . . . um . . . contempt. Because, as you should know by now, Evil is fanatically dedicated to striving ever onward, to the future, to the bigger and better and deeper and whatnot. Like a submarine plunging into the Marianas Trench with Jimmy Hoffa’s body.

So: no nostalgia for the dead and bloated past. Instead, how about a few items the Evil meant to but never got around to giving their due? Let’s flush out the backlog now so that we can move forward to next week, then next month, then next year . . . when every single post will involve giant robots!

Tropic Thunder: Saw this, and if you haven’t, here’s what you need to know. Like most Ben Stiller comedies, there are loooooong stretches of nothing funny happening. It’s not that he’s reaching for jokes that flop; there are just gaping comedic chasms spiked with hysterical moments. Also: if you want to extract the maximum amount of laughter from Thunder, you’d better think every single word that issues from Bob Downey’s mouth is gut-bustingly funny. Even if it’s not apparently humorous. Because at least a third of the movie’s “humor” lies in the assumption that anything he says will naturally be funny. Even if it’s not a joke. One imagines that, at every tricky moment in the script, the writers simply inserted “Downey says something here” and moved on. Also also: the whole “Tom Cruise revitalizes his career with an hilarious bit part!” thing. Yeah, he’s funny . . . but the “revitalizing career move” angle is so blatant it’s off-putting. Matthew McConaughey is much funnier in his bit part, and last Evil checked, his career could use a whole lot more resuscitating than Tom-Tom’s. That said, Tropic Thunder is worth a matinee. Damn, that was review-y! Let’s not do this again, hmm?

The Dark Knight: Saw this. Thrice! And decided not to comment on it, for really, given the numbers and the accolades, it would be like taking a dump in the ocean. Really, the Evil is only commenting now because doing so provided the opportunity to use the word “thrice.” And also so he can type SPOILER ALERT! (Go-go-gadget CAPS LOCK key!) But . . . a question: when the Joker tells Batman where Rachel and Harvey are, and Batman runs out, Gordon asks him which one he’s going after. Batman snarls, “Rachel!” . . . and then shows up where Harvey Dent is. Anyone know why? Continuity problem? Is the Evil just misinterpreting this scene? Thanks in advance.

Michael Phelps: Despite his feelings toward the Olympics, Evil appreciates athletic excellence when he sees it . . . or doesn’t, in this case. As impressed as the Evil is with Phelps’s achievement, and as much as he enjoys swimming, he finds competitive swimming almost entirely unwatchable. He knows the swimmers are gracefully cutting through the water at speeds and levels of endurance he can’t imagine, but onscreen it looks like controlled drowning, all flailing limbs and ruptured water. And as if they’re being dragged around by a great white like the drunk girl in the opening scene from Jaws. The Evil feels these disturbing aesthetic qualities, above all else, will forever prevent swimming from becoming a mass spectator sport.

That’s it for post 100. Remember: next week, it’s robots, robots, robots! . . . and the steady diet of lies, lies, lies upon which you’ve come to depend. You wonderful junkie.

Enjoy the weekend. If possible, reread each and every one of the first 99 posts. Do it–do it now! There’s no time!

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