Mike Julianelle

Mike lives in Brooklyn with his wife, two children, and an increasing dependence on alcohol. Find him on and its associated social channels (FB, IG, Twitter), and his podcast, and be ready for him to mock his kids, himself, and maybe even you.

Muppets’ Statler and Waldorf Get What’s Coming To Them On SNL

SNL Security Muppets Sketch

Most of the Muppets are really lovable. My opinions on Miss Piggy notwithstanding, most of Jim Henson’s puppets are not only funny, but they’re also endearing. The put-upon frog, the inept comic bear, the lovelorn pig, the manic drummer, the indecipherable chef, all have endearing qualities.

Except for two. Statler and Waldorf are just plain jerks. The two curmudgeons who sit on a balcony and mock the rest of the Muppets are hilarious, but they’re not exactly lovable. And if they existed in any universe outside of the Muppets, they’d probably be less celebrated.

Over the weekend, Saturday Night Live explored exactly what would happen if the two elderly hecklers ran into the wrong people.

Keegan-Michael Key, from Key and Peele, hosted the show, and in one memorable sketch, he and Kenan Thompson played a pair of security guys working the venue at the Muppets latest gig. When Statler and Waldorf started doing their thing, they were NOT here for it, and they let the hecklers know.

And then the hecklers messed around and found out. Hilariously.

Loki Sneak Peek Gives Us More Owen Wilson

Loki Sneak Peek

Apparently, the MTV Movie Awards are still a thing, and they happened last night!

I couldn’t tell you who most of the presenters were, but I know Scarlett Johansson won a career award, Chadwick Boseman got the posthumous award the Oscars denied him, and WandaVision won for Best Show. There’s another MCU show coming soon – Loki arriving in early June – and in between awards, viewers were treated to a sneak peek.

In the short, one-minute clip, Owen Wilson introduces himself as Mobius and explains that time works differently at the TVA, the Time Variance Authority, where Loki is now a prisoner.

Check it out:

Tom Hiddleston recently gave an interview in which he spoke a bit about the show, and the character he is best known for portraying.

“I want to preserve the freshness of the show for when it emerges, but something to think about is the [show’s] logo, which seems to refresh and restore,” Hiddleston explained in a recent interview with Empire. “The font of how ‘Loki’ is spelled out seems to keep changing shape. Loki is the quintessential shapeshifter. His mercurial nature is that you don’t know whether, across the MCU, he’s a hero or a villain or an anti-hero. You don’t know whether you can trust him. He literally and physically changes shape into an Asgardian guard, or into Captain America repeatedly. Thor talks about how he could change into a snake.

“I think that shapeshifting logo might give you an idea that Loki, the show, is about identity, and about integrating the disparate fragments of the many selves that he can be, and perhaps the many selves that we are. I thought it was very exciting because I’ve always found Loki a very complex construct. Who is this character who can wear so many masks, and changes shape, and seems to change his external feeling on a sixpence?”

Father Figures: Believe It

“I had to share how amazing my husband has been becoming a first time dad. He keeps saying how he wishes he could’ve done more. But I need him to know he DID DO everything and more.

Our son Zac was born at 37 weeks on March 24th.

My husband (Alex) and I decided to induce that day, due to my diagnosis of hyperemesis gravidarum (ongoing for 8months), as well as hydronephrosis which we had been spending the past week in the hospital for.

This pregnancy was a living hell for both of us. We spent a total of about 30 days in the hospital during the pregnancy.

Alex spent the first 7 months of the pregnancy holding my hair with one hand and my sick bucket with the other. I became physically and mentally dependent on him to get through each day. He’s the one I wouldn’t have survived without.

Soon after our son, was born he was rushed to the NICU and I saw the life get sucked out of my husband’s face. He started blaming himself for not being able to take care of his family.

He dropped everything to be with Zac and me for the 13 days we were in the NICU. He has showed up everyday, every hour, for every feed, and we finally went home with our preemie baby who still has a lot of growing to do.

We never thought our life would come crashing down like this, but Zac and I wouldn’t have survived without Alex, and I just want my husband to know that and believe that.

He did everything right. He did everything in his power to keep us safe even though he thinks he failed to do it. There is nothing he could’ve done differently because he has been perfect and now our family is complete, something I am truly, truly grateful for. ”

– Aisha Dow

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

Fan Art Shows John Cena, Zac Efron as Newest Members of the Fantastic 4

Fanart Depicting The Fantastic 4
(Twitter // BossLogic)

Fancasting is fun, and sometimes even persuasive. Sure, there’s the Jack Black plays everyone in the MCU alternate universe, but in the real world, Patrick Stewart as Professor X, Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange, and Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool all owe their roles to a bit of fan speculation. With the X-Men and Fantastic 4  joining the MCU during Phase 4, speculation has been rampant about casting for both teams of superheroes.

WandaVision was swirling with rumors and teases about casting reveals, with fans hoping for Magneto’s involvement. Disney+ may have a Wolverine show planned, but the trailer for Phase 4 once again teased the inclusion of the Fantastic Four, both of which have caused flurries of more fancasting on social media.

Obviously, actors cast as married couples dont have to actually be married in real life, and usually aren’t, but fans can’t resist putting John Krasinski and Emily Blunt in the role of Reed and Sue Storm, leaders of the Fantastic 4. It’s constant, so much so that many of them are bound to be disappointed when Marvel goes in a different direction.

Regardless, they do seem like they’d be good in those roles. Back in 2018, Boss Logic, an art director and popular Twitter personality, has mocked up a bit of artwork to make it even more painful if it doesn’t happen. But threw in a couple of other names into the mix, and mocked them up as well: Zac Efron as Johnny Storm, and John Cena, currently a member of DC’s Suicide Squad, as The Thing.

I have to say, that foursome looks pretty convincing. Not sure how convincing it looks to Kevin Feige and the higher-ups at Marvel, though. The good news is we’re going to find out sooner than later, with the MCU’s Phase 4  kicking off with Black Widow in July and not slowing down for the foreseeable future. Eventually, they’re going to have to tell us exactly who is going to star in the Fantastic 4!

I’m sure they’ll get it right; their casting has been pretty impeccable. I just hope there’s a spot for Danny DeVito.

Woody Harrelson Stops to Help Strangers Move In Full Dad-Mode

Woody Harrelson Helps A Woman Move
(Twitter / Alex Janin)

He may play a symbiote serial killer nowadays, but Woody Harrelson seems way more like his friendly Cheers character in real life.  Beloved funny man and movie star Bill Murray has a legendary reputation for popping up in random places and making strangers’ days with good-natured antics. Now his former Zombieland co-star is stepping in to fill his shoes.

Earlier this month, Alex Janin, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, and her boyfriend Grant Jefferson were moving out of their Manhattan apartment. Wouldn’t you know it, Hunger Games star Woody Harrelson emerged from a store, started chatting with Alex, and decided to help them move.

Alex shared a photo of the Cheers bartender holding a houseplant and smiling, with the caption “Woody Harrelson helped us move out of our apartment today. Love you, NYC.”

She provided a little extra context in a follow-up tweet, explaining that the actor was looking for a local Citibike station, and after they talked, insisted on doing some manual labor on the couple’s behalf.

Alex told her story to the Huffington Post, and described Woody -who advised her to water her plant more- as having “total dad vibes.” She even hoped he came back later to rescue her dying plant.

“We left it on the street for a (hopefully) better home,” Jefferson said. “I have a fantasy Woody came back later and saved it. He was concerned.”

I bet Bill Murray would have.

‘Friends: The Reunion’: Long List of Guest Stars Makes Up For Lame Trailer

Friends The Reunion Trailer
(YouTube/HBO Max)

It seems like ages ago that the Friends reunion was announced. And then Covid hit and it was delayed. And delayed some more. Well, it’s finally coming, and soon!

Today, HBO Max released a completely empty teaser trailer – seriously, it’s just a shot of the cast walking away from the camera as an overly dramatic instrumental version of the familiar theme song plays – and announced that the special will land on the streaming service on May 27th.

They also made up for the lack of sizzle in the teaser by laying out a long list of guest stars who will appear in the special, along with all of the original cast (Jennifer Aniston, Matthew Perry, Courtney Cox, David Schwimmer, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc). Many of the guests have tenuous – at best – links to the popular sitcom.

The list includes David Beckham, Justin Bieber, BTS, James Corden, Cindy Crawford, Cara Delevingne, Lady Gaga, Elliott Gould, Kit Harington, Larry Hankin, Mindy Kaling, Thomas Lennon, Christina Pickles, Tom Selleck, James Michael Tyler, Maggie Wheeler, Reese Witherspoon and Malala Yousafzai.

Malala Yousafzai?! Wait, what?

Given that the special is an unscripted reunion, as opposed to a scripted look at where the characters are now, my money is on most of those guest stars giving testimonials about what the show means to them, but that’s just a guess.

We’ll find out for sure in two weeks! Until then, here’s that underwhelming teaser trailer:

Father Figures: Show and Tell

“The year was 1992 – I was in second grade at John J Jennings Elementary School in Bristol, CT.

Show-and-tell was a weekly highlight for our class. Some classmates had their parents come to talk about their important jobs as a Fireman or an EMT; they would bring plastic fire chief hats or stickers for everyone.

My dad was a proud feeder driver for United Parcel Service (and also my best friend and hero), so logically I begged him to come as my special show-and-tell guest. After lots of convincing (by me) and some behind the scenes logistical work (by him), my dad was granted permission to bring a set of tractor trailer doubles to my elementary school for show and tell.

My classmates were given a tour of the equipment, a photo in the driver seat, and a model UPS airplane as mementos of the special day. The visit was even featured in UPS’s publication, ‘The Big Idea.’

This is one of many examples of my dad going above and beyond – a fun and memorable day! He taught me that family comes first, and the way to a good life is through hard work.

My dad passed away unexpectedly on March 12, 2021. While losing my best friend has been undoubtedly devastating, I’ve found strength and comfort in hearing stories from others – near and far – who have been impacted by my dad’s personality, humor, generosity and straightforward outlook on life.

Thanks for everything, Daddy – I’ll always make you proud.”

– Becky Faulkner

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

Chappelle Launches Midnight Miracle Podcast With Black Star

Dave Chappelle Private After Party At The h.wood Group's Special Preview Of Harriet's Rooftop Lounge at the Upcoming 1 Hotel West Hollywood
(Getty / Vivien Killilea / Contributor)

Dave Chappelle seems to be doing okay.

He’s basically moved all of his standup specials over to Netflix, where hopefully we’ll get another one soon! He also allowed the streaming channel to add his landmark sketch show, Chappelle’s Show, to their lineup, even after some initial misgivings.

Now he’s branching into something besides streaming…unless podcasts are considered streaming too? Audio streaming? I’m old, I don’t know.

Anyway, the legendary comedian has joined forces with friends and hip-hop stars Talib Kweli and Yasiin Bey (aka Mos Def) for a new podcast called “The Midnight Miracle.” Rap fans know Kweli and Bey as the classic hip-hop duo Black Star, and on the second episode of the podcast, the two rappers reunite to make their first music together in over 20 years.

The show launched on Tuesday, May 11th, but it was actually recorded last summer, in Ohio, during Chappelle’s Summer Camp shows, which featured a variety of guests from the music and comedy worlds. The first is free on Apple Podcasts, the second and all subsequent episodes are exclusively available via Luminary.

According to Rolling Stone, the first episode is titled “How to Inspire” and features guests like Radio Rahim, Mo Amer, Chris Rock, Donnell Rawlings, Jarobi White, and Questlove. And episode two, “Gladiator Circus World,” finds Kweli and Bey premiering their first music as Black Star in over 20 years, while Radio Rahim, Questlove, Lamorne Morris, and Jon Hamm make guest appearances.

“Making a podcast isn’t the obvious next move for me, but it’s the right one,” Chappelle said in a statement. “The Midnight Miracle gives you a look into how me and my friends process the world around us, and I think it will change the way listeners think of what a podcast can be.”

This is an interesting perspective considering the podcast will also be made available on vinyl. Not sure what the Venn diagram of people who own record players and people who listen to podcasts looks like, but apparently Dave Chappelle fans are right in the middle.

The ‘Legends of the Hidden Temple’ Adult-Based Revival Is Looking for Contestants

Legends Adult Reboot

90’s kids will remember. I think. I’m an 80s kid so I can’t be sure. When was Nickelodeon’s Legends of the Hidden Temple on the air?

Let’s check Wikipedia.

Yup, Legends of the Hidden Temple is indeed a 90s (93-95, to be precise) adventure game show that Wikipedia describes thusly: the program features a fictitious temple, “filled with lost treasures protected by mysterious Mayan temple guards”. A stone head named Olmec “knows the secrets behind each of the treasures in his temple” and six teams (Red Jaguars, Blue Barracudas, Green Monkeys, Orange Iguanas, Purple Parrots, Silver Snakes) of two children (one boy and one girl) compete to retrieve one of the historical artifacts in the temple by performing physical stunts and answering questions based on history, mythology, and geography.

Shit, now I wish I had been a 90s kid, this show sounds awesome! But I’m in luck because Legends of the Hidden Temple is coming back! Only this time it’s not going to be on Nickelodeon (or the now-defunct Quibi, where it was once apparently headed), and it’s not just for kids!

Alex Zalben, the Managing editor at Decider, tweeted out that the show had been picked up by the CW, and will feature adult contestants. And Olmec, of course.

According to Deadline, the show will also be a solid half-hour (as opposed to the Quibi-style micro version), will feature the original team names and challenges (including the Moat Crossings, The Steps of Knowledge, and the Temple Run), and will be shot outside of a studio, where the challenges will be more, um, challenging and probably better suited to adults.

In your face, children! (Besides you already have that awesome Jedi gameshow!)

Anyone over the age of 21 who can make their way to Los Angeles when the revived Legends of the Hidden Temple starts filming this July can now recruit a teammate and submit an application to get a spot.

Head over to the Legends casting website here and get your application in.

“Ultimate Spaghetti Trick” Appalls Internet

Ultimate Spaghetti Trick
(Facebook/Josh and Lisa)

The internet is full of insane nonsense. You’ve got a news publication calling Leo Dicaprio unrecognizable. You’ve got kids making millions unboxing toys, you’ve got cats becoming famous for having grumpy expressions, you’ve got deep fake videos inserting different actors into your favorite movies for no real reason.

There are also lots of hacks. Thousands of tips to make your life easier, from DIY home repairs to learning how products are actually meant to be used, the world wide web is a treasure trove of useful information. And then there’s the Ultimate Spaghetti Hack.

A Facebook page released a video of the Ultimate Spaghetti Trick, in which a woman demonstrates how she makes a spaghetti dinner for a large group of people. She proceeds to dump a collection of pre-made and pre-packaged ingredients, including Prego tomato sauce, meatballs, parmesan cheese, and spaghetti noodles, all over her counter, while the person filming marvels at how “cool” it all is.

Sure, it’s cool, if you think eating off a bacteria-ridden countertop with no plates is cool, and if you prefer your pasta to be as bland and basic as possible is cool. Based on the reaction to the video, the internet has a different idea of what’s cool.

First of all, that’s gross.

Second of all, that’s cold:

And finally, that’s not even a hack!

It’s also reckless!

Thankfully, a closer look at the Facebook page on which the video originated reveals it to be a “parody hack,” but that didn’t stop the internet from being disgusted. Or me from getting really hungry. But don’t worry, I’ll use plates.

Leonardo DiCaprio Called “Unrecognizable” in Photos From New Scorsese Film

When you’re among the biggest movie stars in the world, it’s not easy to go unnoticed. Once your face has been on movie screens and TV screens and billboards and all over social media, it’s safe to say that most people that don’t live under rocks will probably be able to pick you out of a crowd.

This is why it’s so impressive when an actor like Robert DeNiro or Christian Bale totally transforms his body and/or transforms his face to embody a character.

Leonardo DiCaprio hasn’t tried to do that all that often – the best example is probably when he played J. Edgar Hoover in Clint Eastwood’s biopic – but the New York Post is really impressed within his latest attempt.

DiCaprio is currently filming another collaboration with Martin Scorsese, Killers of the Flower Moon in which he plays an Oklahoma man who falls in love with an Osage woman in the 1920s, in a story about the investigation into a series of murders that befall Osage Nation when oil is found on their land.

The New York Post tweeted out an image from the film, with the caption: “Leonardo DiCaprio unrecognizable in first photos of new Scorsese film,” despite the fact that, while the star looks a little bit thicker and less stylish than he often does, he is otherwise utterly recognizable as himself.

Social media had a field day with the tweet, immediately going after the paper for its hyperbole.

A few people lent a hand:

Others piled on with one of Leo’s own memes:

I guess The Daily Planet isn’t the only NYC paper with vision problems:

Father Figures: So Much Already

“Even though our little bean is only 4 months old, my significant other has been through so much already.

Our first few days with her were perfect, but things went downhill quickly for me. Drew was forced to not only take care of me, he also had to completely provide for our daughter when I wasn’t able.

Eventually, when I was in the hospital, he juggled caring for her and visiting me. He was faced with the possibility of being an only parent. I can’t imagine the stress he experienced.

Last week, our daughter started having seizures. We took her to the hospital, where they admitted her to the ICU and put her through numerous tests and finally put her on medication to stop the seizures. (She seems to be happy and healthy again.)

He was by her side through the entire process. I love watching him become closer to her. She is definitely going to be a daddy’s girl!”

– Ashley Vernon

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

Jack Black Pretends To Be a Superhero But His Mom Actually Is One

Jack Black’s Mom

It’s tempting to say that Jack Black has used social media to emerge as one of the most relatable, charismatic, and funny stars we have, but the truth is the man has been doing this for decades.

From Tenacious D and Heat Vision and Jack to High Fidelity and School of Rock, from Kung Fu Panda to Goosebumps and Jumanji, the man has been entertaining children and parents alike for a long, long time.

Lately, he’s been using his YouTube and Instagram channels to delight even more people, with his hilarious videos in costume as various superheroes with a less than heroic physique actually leading fans to clamor for Black to be added to the MCU. But it turns out that his mother is the actual superhero in the family.

A recent post on Twitter shed light on Black’s mother’s life, and despite the fact that it was a short tweet with a single photo, it indicates a rather impressive biography. Not only did Judith Love Cohen, Black’s mother, work as an aerospace engineer, but she also worked on the team that helped rescue the imperiled Apollo 13 astronauts. Oh, and she did so while pregnant with her son.

Her Wikipedia page adds a few details, specifically the fact that the problem she was working on involved the guidance computer for the Minuteman missile and the Abort-Guidance System in the Apollo Lunar Module.

Her son Neil said, “My mother usually considered her work on the Apollo program to be the highlight of her career. When disaster struck the Apollo 13 mission, it was the Abort-Guidance System that brought the astronauts home safely. Judy was there when the Apollo 13 astronauts paid a “thank you” to the TRW facility in Redondo Beach.”

Pretty dang impressive – she not only helped save seemingly doomed astronauts, thus indirectly creating Ron Howard’s and Tom Hanks’s great Apollo 13 movie – she also gave birth to one of the 21st century’s most beloved stars.

Maybe she should be in the MCU.