Friday, February 01, 2008

A Short Novel on Last Night

Okay, to follow up on my high-on-life Pollyanna post from last night (regarding that--what is the deal with the blogger site clocking posts in on Central Time?) I want to write a few words about a television program that everyone should be watching. Don't worry, the topics are related.

Friday Night Lights
was a movie that came out in 2004, and was then adapted into a one hour drama television series for NBC in 2006. It's in the midst of it's second season right now, and although there isn't a huge fan base, it is one of the most critically acclaimed series on the air these days (another one you should be watching is Battlestar Galactica, but that would require a lot of convincing for those who merely reject a show that airs on the SciFi Network, so we'll save that argument for another day).

Anyway, thanks to my boss, who, as a member of the Academy of Movies and TV and this and that, received an invite to an event I was able to attend on his behalf. Last night, I went to "An Evening with Friday Night Lights" presented by the Television Academy. The event included a screening of a new episode followed by a Q&A with the cast and creators and then a reception afterwards. I have to say, that as a pure fan of the show, I was thrilled to be going. When we got there, my excitement was momentarily squandered by the bitchy woman working the list who forced my colleague and I to wait for our boss to arrive as he only had one plus-one (this was a lie, the boss never planned on coming in the first place, and it is fairly routine that agents and managers will send their assistants in their place, so why the giant chip on this lady's shoulder? Methinks she may have been an abused assistant in the not-so-recent past. Or she just hates life because she is very unattractive). Ultimately, she pitied our sad assistant faces and ushered us in just before the show started.

The episode that played was fantastic, as always, and even better, it's the one set to air tonight, so I felt all cool and stuff getting a little sneak peak. After the episode, the moderator came on stage. Now here is where I will further enlighten you to the full extent of my dorkiness. I knew the moderator. Not because he was an actor, or a politician, or a well-known public figure or anything like that. Nope, he was just a senior writer for Entertainment Weekly, my favorite magazine since I was 12 years old. He gave a little introduction and then called the actors and creators on stage. This was great.

Anyone who watches the show knows that Tim Riggins is the heart and soul of FNL and Taylor Kitsch, the actor who plays Riggs (#33! Wow--I'm clearly a high schooler at heart! I also love shopping at the mall and prank calling boys!) embodies a lot of his character's qualities in the flesh. And he is so incredibly attractive. And I'm in love.

The panel lasted around an hour and it was really fun to watch this very talented cast interact and discuss their work ethic, the storylines, the on-set environment, and their overall experience. Highlights were discovering Connie Britton's fantastic sense of humor, that Aimee Teagarden really acts like an over-excited teenager, and Taylor Kitsch is even better looking and more entertaining in real life (like I said, IN LOVE.)

When the panel wrapped up, and after we lingered around near the actors for a bit while waiting for some other friends (and I attempted to keep my cool around the hottest human being alive who I am IN LOVE with) we made our way to the reception area. On our way we passed this ferocious woman. I call her ferocious because of her sparkly eye shadow, heavily hair-sprayed 'do, and white knee-high boots. And because she was maybe five feet tall (with boots) and was just standing around with pursed lips and an odd posture that seemed as though she was trying to suggest to people, "talk to me, I could be famous." She was not famous. She was weird.

I was standing around talking to my friends when I saw someone I recognized. Turns out it was a guy I had graduated from Middlebury with, who I never actually knew while at Middlebury, but just happened to recognize. He was with another Midd alum, and the three of us a chatted for a bit, exchanged info, and marveled that even in a huge city like LA, you can still have a special small-world experience. It was precious. If only I could have told Taylor Kitsch I went to college with him and maybe did he want my cell phone number or just wanted to go get a marriage license at City Hall or the Vegas chapel of his choice. Again, IN LOVE.

On the way out the door I briefly introduced myself to Entertainment Weekly writer (apparently I am comfortable talking to writers but not to the hottest human being alive? Actually this is probably a very normal thing), and then my friend and I walked back to our cars laughing about the evening, stopping to gawk in fear/interest at a freakish Christmas store with life-size Santa models and huge ornaments and everything.

Driving home, I was reflecting on the day, and thinking about the whole experience of moving out to LA--or at least the experience I've had so far. It was then I had the strange out-of-body/I'm so happy moment I posted around midnight, and I just couldn't wipe the grin of my face.

About ten minutes later I remembered I had missed the season premiere of Lost and shook my fist at the gods for depriving me of the time to fit in all my favorite activities in one day. But then I thanked the gods for DVR.

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