DID YOU READ

Why Patrick Dempsey should play Dr. Strange

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How – and there is no other way to describe it — strange is it that there hasn’t yet been a Dr. Strange movie?

Any given summer needs, quite frankly, a live action “Master of the Mystic Arts” tentpole. It would be not unlike a Harry Potter movie (and we know how successful that franchise has been), but for a more mature audience. Originally, the artwork within the panels of the mystical realms was so trippy in the 60’s that it became a hit with the stoner crowd. The artful use of CGI could buttress an already compelling narrative. The story of “Stephen Strange” is not unlike that of Iron Man’s Tony Stark — a wealthy, attractive, and flawed man – but with great potential. With regards to flaws: Tony Stark had the bottle; Stephen Strange was an egoist.

As the original story co-created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko in Strange Tales # 110 in July 1963, a handsome New York surgeon, selfish beyond all measure, evolves into a protector of mankind. Strange began as a privileged youth, saving the life of his sister as a child. This pivotal life experience propelled him onto a path of healing, eventually leading him to graduation – in record time — from medical school and becoming a gifted neurosurgeon after a prestigious residency program. His sister, Donna, in the meantime, dies at the age of 19 in a drowning accident in which Strange was present. The failure to save her throws Stephen Strange into a cold and callous nihilism.

The pendulum swings; the crystal ball becomes cloudy. The gifted, arrogant surgeon now suffers a tragic car accident. In the accident, Strange loses the precision in his hands that required performing neurosurgery. This moment, of course, lights a fire under Strange’s ass and draws him out of his narrow self-absorption. And so Strange journeys, travelling the world in search of some kind of a cure. Strange finds his way to mystical Tibet, where he hears tales of “The Ancient One,” a mysterious person who can do unnatural things. On a blindingly snowy night, Strange, at the end of his resources, finds the fortress of the Ancient One. In the process of trying to get his hands healed he learns the art of sorcery. He abandons the quest to return to his previous life as a surgeon, seeing, ultimately, that serving as a force for good against the overwhelming force of dark magic in the cosmos is a more important end goal.

How awesome is that? In this journey, of course, there are mystical battles against the evil Baron Mordo, a resentful apprentice sorcerer who is the heir of The Ancient One. And demons – lots and lots of undying demons! There is also the beautiful Madeleine Revell, a United Nations translator whom Strange leaves behind due to his egotistical behavior. And, of course, there is the mysterious Ancient One.

Patrick Dempsey – aka, Grey’s Anatomy’s “Dr. McDreamy,” the neurosurgeon – has lobbied hard to play Dr. Strange. Dempsey told the LA Times’ Hero Blog, “I’ve been lobbying for that … There’s a whole bunch of people [among the ‘Grey’s’ crew] who are into comics and Marvel, too, on the set and they’re like, ‘Doctor Strange, that’s the one you should do.’ It would be fantastic.” Although he is more interested in Strange as a premium cable show, Marvel Studios has already confirmed that writers Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer, who came aboard the still-in-limbo project in 2010, have already completed the script.

Dempsey has convincingly played a neurosurgeon and he has convincingly played a reformed egotist (for further reference, see: “Loverboy”). He has the look, the experience with early success, the fan base and a convincing knowledge of the character. Patrick Dempsey can fill the large boots of the “Sorcerer Supreme.” Make this movie happen now and let this man helm it.

Would you want to see a “Doctor Strange” movie starring Patrick Dempsey? Tell us in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon.

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number!

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time.

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by.

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo.

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim.

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t?

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?”

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud.

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.

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Get Physical

DVDs are the new Vinyl

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available On Disc.

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In this crazy digital age, sometimes all we really want is to reach out and touch something. Maybe that’s why so many of us are still gung-ho about owning stuff on DVD. It’s tangible. It’s real. It’s tech from a bygone era that still feels relevant, yet also kitschy and retro. It’s basically vinyl for people born after 1990.

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Inevitably we all have that friend whose love of the disc is so absolutely repellent that he makes the technology less appealing. “The resolution, man. The colors. You can’t get latitude like that on a download.” Go to hell, Tim.

Yes, Tim sucks, and you don’t want to be like Tim, but maybe he’s onto something and DVD is still the future. Here are some benefits that go beyond touch.

It’s Decor and Decorum

With DVDs and a handsome bookshelf you can show off your great taste in film and television without showing off your search history. Good for first dates, dinner parties, family reunions, etc.

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Forget Public Wifi

Warm up that optical drive. No more awkwardly streaming episodes on shady free wifi!

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Inter-not

Internet service goes down. It happens all the time. It could happen right now. Then what? Without a DVD on hand you’ll be forced to make eye contact with your friends and family. Or worse – conversation.

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Self Defense

You can’t throw a download like a ninja star. Think about it.

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If you’d like to experience the benefits DVD ownership yourself, Portlandia Season 7 is now available on DVD and Blue-Ray.