November 8 – The Incredible Hulk

As Themselves

You know you’ve really made it big when you can appear in a major production as yourself. There have been some amazing performances where someone basically accentuates their real-life persona and pokes a little fun at themselves. This list, of course, does not include reality TV and I’ve also decided not to include bands who may show up in a film or TV show for performance purposes. With that said, on with the article!

#5: Bill Murray – Zombieland/Space Jam

Bill Murray has appeared a few movies playing himself, some more notable than others. First, in the Looney Tunes-Michael Jordan crossover Space Jam, Murray and Jordan are golfing buddies, causing the former Ghostbuster to get dragged into the intergalactic basketball battle between the Tune Squad and the Monstars. Years later, Murray made a surprise cameo in the horror-comedy Zombieland. Unfortunately, that appearance didn’t end too well for the comedic legend, as his living dead costume was a little too convincing for his newfound friends.

#4: Wil Wheaton – Big Bang Theory

The former Star Trek child star has appeared in a number of Big Bang Theory episodes, first as a nemesis to Sheldon Cooper and later, a friend. His early battles with Sheldon included a fantasy card game tournament (which Sheldon only entered to extract some revenge against Wheaton for no-showing a personal appearance years earlier), as well as a bowling challenge. Wheaton has also shared screen time with aspiring actress Penny (whose last name has never been divulged) on a low-budget production. For being able to poke fun at himself, Wheaton has found himself embraced by geeks everywhere, whether Star Trek fans or not.

#3: Stan Lee – Mallrats/The Simpsons/Big Bang Theory

The king of the cameo, Lee is known to appear briefly in the movies of all his comic creations, usually as a security guard, hot dog vendor, or other minor character. He has also shown up as himself in a number of TV shows and films. Most notably was his turn in the comedy Mallrats, where he provides main character Brodie with some sage advice about love and romance, prior to a book signing appearance. Similar to his appearance in Mallrats, he has guest-starred on episodes of The Simpsons and The Big Bang Theory as appearing at the comic book stores featured on each show. He even officiated Comic Book Guy’s wedding!

#2: Neil Patrick Harris – Harold and Kumar Franchise

When the former Doogie Howser M.D., Neil Patrick Harris, appeared in Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle as a drug-addled sex fiend, he virtually re-launched his career, leading to being cast as womanizer Barney Stinson on How I Met Your Mother. NPH’s random appearances in all three of the Harold and Kumar movies have always been loaded with laughs, as he plays an out-of-control former child star who always seems to meddle with the main journey. Funnily, he’s actually credited as Neil Patrick Harris in each Harold and Kumar film and not with the typical “As Himself” acknowledgment.

#1: Adam West – Family Guy

The former Caped Crusader has proven before that he doesn’t mind poking fun at himself. Hell, how else could he get through the campy 1960’s Batman TV series!? Still, as the Mayor of Quahog, Adam West is lampooned as an out-of-his-mind dignitary who is more likely to erect unnecessary statues, than properly run the town. West has even gone on to marry Peter Griffin’s sister-in-law (he also dated Peter’s daughter, Meg, briefly), thus making him a member of the family. The one-time Bruce Wayne has also parodied himself on other cartoons, including The Simpson and The Fairly OddParents.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Incredible Hulk

Incredible Hulk Shot

  • 0.5 oz Absinthe
  • 0.25 oz Melon Liqueur
  • Top with Mountain Dew
  • Garnish with a Lime Wedge

I also have to give honourable mentions to Dennis Rodman (3rd Rock from the Sun), Bob Barker (Happy Gilmore), Alice Cooper (Wayne’s World), Al Gore (Futurama), and Lou Ferrigno (King of Queens). One day, the Sip Advisor hopes to appear as himself in some form of media… other than Cops, that is!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
I went with this shooter recipe because Stan Lee created the character and Lou Ferrigno, who I included in the honourable mentions, played the big guy. After downing the shot, I blacked out and went into a rage, destroying everything in my path. When I awoke, my clothes were tattered and there was green make-up everywhere. In all seriousness, this recipe is kind of neat, with Absinthe actually coming across nice, thanks to the Melon Liqueur and Mountain Dew.

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July 19 – Floater

All the Balls

After last week’s look at the best sports movies geared towards a family audience, it’s time to turn up the vulgarity and venture into the world of adult-oriented films… well, not those types of films, but the sports type for teens and adults. Here are the Top 5 grown up sports movies:

#5: Baseketball

From the creators of South Park (Trey Parker and Matt Stone), comes this farce about a world where sports superstars have become so overpaid and corporations dictate athletic competition. A universe where sportsmanship no longer exists and money is the root of all evil. Enter Cooper and Remer, who create a baseball-basketball-beer pong hybrid that eventually grows to become the next great sports phenomenon. Some of the team names from the movie are particularly clever, including the Dallas Felons, Miami Dealers, New Jersey Informants, and San Francisco Ferries (think about that one for a moment!).

baseketball

#4: DodgeBall

The underdog story of a ragtag group trying to save their gym (Average Joe’s), as they dodge, dip, dive, duck, and yes, dodge again versus the super-charged squad of Globo-Gym, which is looking to buy out the smaller competition. The entire cast is hilarious in this movie (particularly, my boy Stephen Root) and the surprise cameos from some judges of the competitions are great as well. A sequel to the movie is in the works and both Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller are expected to reprise their roles. Hopefully they remember that if you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball!

#3: Happy Gilmore

Adam Sandler kept his string of 90’s hit movies going with this entry. The film sees aspiring hockey star – despite his awful skillset – jump into the world of professional golf, when he’s discovered by a one-handed golf course pro. Things become more serious for Gilmore when his grandma’s house is to be taken away and the only way to get it back is Gilmore’s success on the PGA Tour. In my opinion, along with the success of Tiger Woods, the popularity of this film launched a whole new generation of golf players and fans. Gilmore’s brawl with The Price is Right host, Bob Barker, is one of the best cameo scenes in movie history.

Happy Gilmore

#2: Caddyshack

Times are changing at the Bushwood Country Club, as a new wave of members enter the fray, disrupting the once peaceful and pristine society. Bill Murray steals the show as groundskeeper Carl Spackler, particularly his improvised scene describing the Cinderella story of a hard luck golfer at Augusta, while teeing off on some of the club’s flowers. Others, such as Rodney Dangerfield and Ted Knight are perfect in their roles as combative members. It’s too bad that the sequel couldn’t live up to the original, but it’s still an okay romp. I especially enjoy it when the course is given miniature golf elements.

#1: Slap Shot

There are so many quotable lines in this classic. Paul Newman is awesome as the Charlestown Chief’s player-coach, Reggie Dunlop, and with other oddballs like the ultraviolent Hanson Brothers joining the squad, there’s plenty of characters to appreciate and enjoy. Many of the roles were based on real-life players. As a young kid growing up in hockey-mad Canada, this film was like a rite of passage, especially given its adult elements. I can’t say much for the two sequels that have come out in more recent years, but everyone out there, hockey fan or not, should give the original a viewing.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Floater

Floater Shot

  • 1 oz Vodka
  • Scoop of Peanut Butter
  • Dash of Chocolate Syrup

Who would have thought that two golf-themed films would crack this list? Even more surprising, not a single Will Ferrell sports movie made the Top 5… and I’m a huge Will Ferrell fan. Lastly, while they are made-for-TV documentaries, the Sip Advisor encourages everyone out there to check out ESPN’s 30-for-30 series and get your learn on!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
All I have to say about this shot is, think about the pool scene in Caddyshack… disgusting, indeed! You’re also supposed to garnish with shot with Corn, but I just couldn’t make that graphic leap. Given the shooter is straight vodka, it’s strong, but the Peanut Butter and Chocolate Sauce tame it a little… just not enough.

April 15 – Whiskey Sick Day

Under the Weather

Recently, your faithful Sip Advisor contracted a flu which knocked me for a loop and caused me to miss my very first days of work due to illness. During my three-day sabbatical, I worked diligently to document my ordeal and I hope to share those notes with you, my little sippers, today. Don’t worry, all the gross stuff has been removed unless you find under-garnished hamburgers as disgusting as I do!

The first day I wasn’t feeling well I still dragged my butt to work and even played soccer, part of a rotating sports league I’m a member of. For some reason, I’ve always played well when ill. While this wasn’t the seven goals I sniped a few weeks back in ice hockey while playing with a cold, it was a half decent performance. Afterwards is when I really started feeling grungy, though.

Sickness

The next morning I woke up and decided to pull the plug on my iron-man streak. I grabbed a spot in front of the TV and searched for some suitable entertainment… quickly learning that there’s not much out there.

When I myself was just a little sipper and was home from school sick, The Price is Right was a favourite viewing pleasure of mine. Bob Barker and his crusade to get your pets spayed and neutered was something all viewers could get behind… plus Plinko was pretty awesome!

The first thing I noticed when watching the show last week is that it now employs a male prize model. The strapping young man is hard not to notice among the horde of attractive women. I wonder if Bob Barker’s sexual harassment allegations would have been any different with less of Barker’s Beauties around. Rod Roddy, on the other hand, would have certainly found himself in hot water with all the males running about.

Barkerfail

The funniest thing is seeing male contestants win a prize and go to hug all the ladies, only to double clutch when approaching the guy and go for the ol’ handshake-hug-reacharound.

My TV viewing pleasures didn’t stop there as I tuned into the Maury Show for some paternity results. Not the best idea to try and catch a nap while moms are screaming about babies having the same eyebrows as prospective daddies and these fine gents are denying they’re fathers with more passion than they’ve ever put into, well… anything!

One case in particular caught my attention as a guy, who was denying his daughter, kept bringing up that he had bought his girlfriend a $900 engagement ring. It was mentioned like 10 times, no exaggeration. Did he follow up the proposal by treating her a two-can-dine for $9.99 meal at Mickie D’s!?

Maury

Later on during my sickness, I had a massive craving for salt and grease. In my mind, I knew that a quick jaunt to McDonalds was the only way to appease these desires. Without Mrs. Sip around to take care of me and explain to me that McDonalds is not recovery food – she was off gallivanting around town, selling my secret recipes to unscrupulous barkeeps… or so my delirious mind told me – I had to venture out into the rain, umbrella-less and forage for food. While at the restaurant, and figuring I didn’t want to make the brief trip again, should the urge arise a second time, I ordered four hamburgers.

Sadly, I was only able to stomach one (and that was a challenge… damn, I hate it when Mrs. Sip is right!) before throwing the other three in the fridge for a later date with destiny. Those other meals were massive disappointments, with two of the three sandwiches only containing one pickle… and tiny slices at that. This has been a longstanding issue between myself and Ronald McDonalds’ peeps. I’ve complained before, something I’m rarely charged enough to do, but the results of my pleas have not been satisfactory.

Lastly, I largely stayed away from alcoholic bevvies during my recovery, save for my work on this site. However, I felt best – and this could be a disturbing sign – after I had a couple of drinks nearly a week after I was first sick. Alcohol: it cures what ails you!

Drink #105: Whiskey Sick Day

April 15

  • 0.75 oz Whiskey (I used Wiser’s Spiced)
  • 0.75 oz Bailey’s Irish Crème
  • Top with Hot Chocolate (I used Rolo Cocoa Powder)
  • Garnish with Whip Cream and Chocolate Sprinkles

My final observation of the week is that being sick absolutely sucks. You think it won’t be so bad being away from work and lazing around, but it’s horribly lonely, boring and tedious. At least I had sweet lady liquor and this little gem to keep me company!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
An impromptu drink to “celebrate” my recent illness, this was quite tasty, although totally messy… not that there’s anything wrong with that! The whip cream runneth over the glass, but it is forgiven because of how well it mixed with the hot chocolate based concoction on the inside of the glass. I never mind getting a little sticky for the sake of discovery!