Posts Tagged ‘getwokegobroke’

By John Ruberry

After a long day at work earlier this month I clicked on the “Surprise Me” feature on Netflix. What popped up was Mike Myers’ new vehicle, The Pentaverate.

“Well,” I said to myself, “this might be pretty good.” 

In fact, The Pentaverate doesn’t even measure up to “pretty bad.” The six episode limited series is one of the worst shows I’ve suffered through. Oh, somehow I managed to view a couple episodes of The Secret Diary of Desmond Pfeiffer. I know about awful.

Warning: There are numerous spoilers and some rather disgusting things that I will mention in my review of this Netflix series.

The origin of The Pentaverate dates back to a throwaway line from Myers’ second film, So I Married an Axe Murderer, where the father of Myers’ lead character, also played by Myers, claims that a secret society, the Pentaverate, a five-man cabal, which at one time included Colonel Sanders as a member, rules the world. In this series narrator Jeremy Irons tells us, the original members of the Pentaverate discovered in 1347, contrary to the belief of the Catholic Church, it was fleas that spread the bubonic plague. 

As the first episode begins, the newest member of the group of five, Dr. Hobart Clark (Keegan-Michael Key), a scientist, is accepted into the Pentaverate after he is kidnapped. Apparently, he is the first non-white fellow of the all-male group, replacing a member who mysteriously died. The other members are played by Myers. Lord Lordington, an elderly Englishman, Bruce Baldwin, an Australian media mogul, who of course is based on Rupert Murdoch, Shep Gordon, a manager of various rock acts, a real person who is the subject of a documentary directed by Myers, and Mishu Ivanov, a Russian oligarch and Vladimir Putin crony.

Warning! Not-safe-for-work language in the trailer.

But Myers isn’t done with his roles. The lead character of The Pentaverate is Ken Scarborough, a television reporter who wears plaid sportscoats; he is a quirky throwback from the 1970s who does man-on-the-street interviews of other oddballs, while overshadowing them. Scarborough works for, wait for it, Toronto-based CACA news. Yep, caca. 

The other four Pentaverate members manufacture a story that Dr. Clark, who was invited into the secret society because they believe he can reverse climate change, is dead. Clark’s phony passing occurs while attempting to mimic an internet video fad–kissing your own anus. Clark’s room at Pentaverate headquarters is guarded by a sasquatch, who immediately defecates outside the scientist’s door. 

In addition to a Shrek cameo, Myers plays two other characters, internet personality Rex Smith, a stand-in for Alex Jones, and Anthony Lansdowne, a conspiracy theorist from New Hampshire. 

Besides being an assault on good taste, The Pentaverate is an attack on right-wingers, with the implied message that all conservatives are conspiracy whackos like Lansdowne. He is a believer, or has been a believer, in QAnon, Pizzagate, and the Illuminati. His last words as he falls to his death is, “But what about her emails?” 

Lansdowne, in his bumper-sticker laden van, which not surprisingly has a malfunctioning portable toilet, drives Scarborough and his pre-woke Doctor Who-like young female companion, Reilly Clayton (Lydia West) to New York City, which looks nothing like today’s NYC, but more like your standard Doctor Who “future metropolis.” Scarborough, recently fired by CACA, is convinced by Clayton and Lansdowne to infiltrate Pentaverate headquarters, and he does so after a painful penis tug initiation. 

Clark, following an intimate evening with the Pentaverate’s executive assistant Patty Davis (Debi Mazar) in the Moon Room studio–did the Pentaverate fake the moon landings?–suddenly dies, this time for real. He is promptly replaced by casino billionaire Skip Cho (Ken Jeong). Oh, I have never thought Jeong was funny. Jeong recently showed his true political colors after childishly storming off the set of The Masked Singer after Rudy Giuliani was revealed as a contestant.

Myers seemingly hasn’t emotionally moved on from being an 11-year-old. Flatulence jokes are among the things that ruined his cinema take on Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat, a children’s film, by the way. Scatological so-called humor also undermined another Myers movie bomb, The Love Guru

Outside of Myers’ fading fame, why did Netflix greenlight this debacle? Could it be that woke Netflix executives fell in love with The Pentaverate’s snide attacks on conservatives, who they probably believe are personified by Smith and Lansdowne? I have liberal friends. Really, I do. And many of them insist that I take marching orders from Alex Jones.

Here’s a tip for Netflix and Myers: the first rule of comedy is that comedies need to be funny.

Netflix lost 200,000 subscribers in the first quarter of 2022. Its stock value plummeted 35-percent last month. Yes, when you go woke you go broke. And I can’t think of a single Netflix dramatic series that is aimed at conservatives. Longmire was the closest show I can think of, but production of it ended in 2017, and Longmire was originally an A&E offering. And as I wrote in last week’s review of Ozark, that otherwise quite enjoyable show contorted itself to find ways to attack Republicans.

Over 70 million Americans voted for Donald Trump in 2020. That’s a lot of viewers, Netflix. We don’t live in vans with clogged toilets. We own televisions. 

Cloying use of easter eggs, that is, references to other works that do nothing to advance the story or add laughs–assuming of course there is even one laugh in The Pentaverate–is also another problem here. Winks to other Myers’ works, along with yet another tired replay of HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey, as well as Game of Thrones, are simply annoying. Rob Lowe, a veteran of several Myers movies, makes an unnecessary appearance.

Myers’ acting, outside of his sympathetic portrayal of Scarborough, is subpar. In his review of The Cat in the Hat, Roger Ebert noticed that at times Myers sounded a bit like his Linda Richman “Coffee Talk” character from SNL. The use of convincing accents is supposed to be one of Myers’ strengths, but his Lansdowne character’s accent, rather than sounding like what you’ll hear from a rustic New Englander, varies from a Canadian to a New Yorker style of speech–that is, when Lansdowne isn’t coming across like Wayne Campbell from Wayne’s World.

Oh, when there is a crack within the five members of the Pentaverate, who do you think is behind it? Why of course! It’s the casino billionaire and the Murdoch stand-in. 

I hated The Pentaverate. Hated, hated, hated. If you have any sense of taste or decency, you will hate it too. 

You have been warned. 

Oh, if you think I am just a grumpy old man with a minority opinion on this actual sh*t show, as of May 15, the average critic score on Rotten Tomatoes is just 20 percent. Only once in the last week have I noticed The Pentaverate ranking as a top-ten most viewed program on Netflix. And based on the CGI and the A-List (to some people) cast, I imagine Netflix wasted a lot of money on this fiasco.

The Pentaverate is rated TV-MA for full frontal (possibly with use of prosthetics) nudity, animals engaged in sex, violence, suicide, adult situations, foul language, and scatological references. Well, at least no one smokes in it. 

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

Blogger after a race in 2019

By John Ruberry

Did you hear about the massive organized protest by American conservatives of the Toyko Olympics? 

No?

That’s because there wasn’t one. 

The 2020 Summer Olympics, delayed a year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, got off to a bad start, unless you are woke.

In a women’s soccer match between Team USA and Sweden, athletes from both sides took a knee rather than stand for the Star Spangled Banner. Sweden won the match, 3-0. The US women’s soccer team was the overwhelming favorite to win a gold medal in Tokyo, it ended up with the bronze.

Earlier this year the International Olympic Committee rescinded its Rule 50, which stated “No kind of demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda is permitted in any Olympic sites, venues or other areas.”

The Olympics are a dying movement. More on that in a bit. But the woke protests just add accelerant to the fire. 

In competitive sports success of course is achieved by winning a game, crossing the finish line first, or lifting the heaviest object, or throwing it the farthest. 

The Olympics are a big business, despite being comprised of not-for-profits such as the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee, or more commonly in other nations by government ministries of sport.

The big money for the Olympics comes from TV rights and revenue for the broadcasters. If you envision television ratings as a shot put, then that heavy ball appears to have been thrown by a weak child.

From Fox News

NBC is giving advertisers who bought airtime during the Tokyo Olympics extra commercials due to underwhelming ratings for this year’s 2020 Olympic Games, fueled by a pandemic-weary population and backlash against woke athletes protesting the U.S. flag and national anthem. 

NBC Sports Chairman Pete Bevacqua insisted to the Associated Press that the network would still make money on the 2020 Olympics – but left out details about how much. 

NBC’s primetime coverage of the Tokyo Olympics on July 26 averaged 14.7 million viewers — for a 49% drop compared to the equivalent night from the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games and 53% less than the 2012 London Olympics. The opening ceremonies saw their lowest viewership since 1988.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, there are more television offerings than ever. And some people will watch Olympics segments on NBC’s YouTube channel and those viewership numbers are not included in the network’s ratings total. 

But the viewership numbers still suck. 

Wokism likely contributed to the ratings rout. That may change soon as conservatives are mobilizing against Critical Race Theory and the Democrats’ hard shove to the far-left, but conservatives don’t have a boycott apparatus in place, such as the liberals do with medium-sized groups such as Media Matters and tiny Twitter armies such as Sleeping Giants. That’s because those on the American right calmly reach for the remote and watch something else when they are offended. Or they simply stop buying products, such as what I did after Gillette ran its toxic masculinity television commercial two years ago. I loved its Good News razors. But I don’t want to put money into the hands of a company that insults me. And now I use Bic razors–which I like better and I probably never would have considered purchasing until that nasty commercial. Gillette owes Bic a finder’s fee for making me a customer. [Corrrection: a commenter mentioned that it should have been written the other way around.]

People watch sports, or buy tickets to live events, for many reasons, but the drama of a competitive event is likely the primary one. Not for the politics, that’s for sure.

And conservatives don’t need a Media Matters-type group to tell us what not to watch. Again that may change soon but the American right doesn’t possess the kneejerk compulsion to regularly pressure companies to avoid a network, a website, or a television program.

NBC is in trouble because it already purchased the US rights to every Olympics through 2032. Because leftism is a quasi-religion don’t look for the IOC to reinstate its protest ban for its athletes any time soon.

And yes, the Olympic movement is dying. Only two cities bid for the 2024 summer games, Paris and Los Angeles. The French capital was the winner and LA was immediately awarded the 2028 games. There was no other bidder. And for the 2032 Summer Olympics, the “winner” was Brisbane, Australia, the only bidder. 

For the 2022 and 2026 winter games there were only two bidders each.

Of course that’s because organizing the quadrennial Olympics are big money losers for host cities. Los Angeles managed to turn a profit with its last summer games–but that was in 1984. The 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, and the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro were particularly ghastly financial debacles. Allegations of corruption in the bidding process over the years makes one wonder how stupid supposedly smart people can be.

Athens is a city of many notable ruins–and now Greece’s largest city can add numerous sites from the ’04 games for tourists to marvel at.

As the expression goes, when you get woke you go broke. 

But the Olympics were already arguably broke. 

Next year Beijing hosts the Winter Olympics. I can think of a bunch of reasons not to watch. China is a communist dictatorship, it has a long history of doping among its athletes, there are over two-hundred concentration camps that incarcerate Uighurs in China, and what else? Oh yeah, there’s a good chance that the COVID-19 virus escaped from the Wuhan laboratory, which destroyed the international economy and killed millions.

Woke protests will seal the deal for me and many more in a few months when the Olympic flame is lit in Beijing.

Corporate CEOs need to listen to the millions of quiet conservative protesters like myself and not the dozen or so left-wing screamers who show up at their board meetings. There are more of us than them.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

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Oh and if you’re wondering who this guy is and if you should help pay my writers and our bandwidth costs, I’m the guy who is a room full of hostile press during press conferences actually asked Donald Trump neutral or friendly questions.

It hasn’t made me a lot of friends.

So today’s headline: Toyota suspends donations to Republicans that questioned election results.

My response:

This will not end well.

Now, I already own two Toyota vehicles, and I like them because they drive well and just…work. I’m not boycotting Toyota anytime soon. But, I know what I am doing:

  1. I’m writing a letter to Toyota to point out their hypocrisy over this.
  2. I’m writing to my Representative (a Republican) to express my dismay.

Boycotting big corporations isn’t going to work long term, because at some point we will run out of places to do business. Instead, conservatives need to become increasingly vocal in these companies and remind them that nobody likes it when they pick sides arbitrarily. Toyota seems to think that going woke will appease the crowd.

Nope.

Going woke means going broke. If you’re a Toyota vehicle owner, you need to be really loud in your disapproval of their position. Let them know that you have choices for future vehicle purchases, and if they continue down this path, you’ll buy a Tesla instead. Plus, you can shift your car maintenance to another facility, which will deprive them of revenue in the long term. Remind them of that fact.

If you’re a stock owner, let them know your vote is now a solid ‘NO’ for anyone on the board. In fact, write a letter to each and every board member, reminding them that your vote matters. Most shareholders don’t show up for shareholder meetings, so even a tiny number of shareholders can have a decent influence on a company. Tell them that instead of selling stock, you’re going to hang onto your stock and vote them out of their office. If you’re feeling really saucy, remind them of the fact you follow voter ID laws to cast your shareholder votes, unlike some other people…

Congressmen and women need to remind large businesses that their employees are in many cases Republicans that questioned the stolen election. Looking at the Toyota USA plants, many are located in regions where Republicans win majorities. Hmmm, wouldn’t it be bad if Toyota employees and their representatives suddenly had “issues” at a plant? Maybe lots of employees should just not show up to work one day? Maybe all the kindness showed to big business when it comes to tax cuts and audits magically vaporizes?

Yes, these tactics sound scummy. I’d prefer to just leave businesses alone. But we are running out of options quickly. If conservatives don’t stand up and remind business that they have a voice too, then business will continue to toe whatever dumb line liberals draw on the ground. Boycotting is ceding ground. Do we want to be backed into a corner where we can’t use any business because we boycott everyone? That’s a loser strategy. We should instead stand our ground and remind Toyota that conservatives drive cars too.

This post represents the views of the author and not those of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other government agency.