Thursday, July 27, 2006

I can feel it coming in the air...

First and foremost, you’ve called my bluff. Despite my threats to pull the Caption Contest, I’m giving it one more go this week. But, before we get there, I want to talk about something very important. Something so big that I’ve been anxiously waiting for it since I first heard rumors of it nearly two years ago. Something that has literally been 17 years in the making. Something so exciting that it’s going to be impossible for me to concentrate for the next two days at work. Something so important that I’ve spent close to 15 hours over the last three days reading every article on the internet I possibly can to prepare. What is this something I’m talking about? Two words: Miami Vice!

That’s right folks. This Friday night, after a seventeen year absence, Sonny Crockett and Ricardo Tubbs will explode back into our lives. This time, however, it will be uncensored, uncontrollable, and on the big screen. Seriously, I haven’t been this excited about a movie since Ryan Reynolds and Dane Cook teamed up in “Waiting.” Well, we all know that “Waiting” was atrocious, so what are the odds that I swing and miss twice in a row? Okay, that’s not a fair question.

Anyway, I know that most of you are probably asking yourself why in the world I’m so excited about the resurrection of two characters that lost their fastball about the same time as Doc Gooden? Well, the answer is easy. “Vice” was the one show when I was growing up that my Dad just couldn’t miss, and I remember sitting with him every week watching Crockett and Tubbs infiltrate the underworld of coke dealers with the sounds of Glen Frey and Phil Collins in the background. And yes, I understand that it probably wasn’t exactly “normal” for a father to let his 8 year old kid watch “Vice”, much less make him watch it. Actually, this probably explains a lot about the man I’ve turned out to be, and probably says all you need to know about my relationship with my Pops.

Even more than my personal nostalgia for “Vice”, the fact is that it was a trailblazer for every show since the 80’s that has featured sex, violence, or any combination thereof. Do you really think Dennis Franz would have been able to show his ass every week on NYPD Blue if it hadn’t been for “Vice”? Would Jack Bauer be able to kill dozens of people in one episode if Crockett and Tubbs hadn’t done it first? Would FX even be able to have a prime time lineup if it weren’t for “Vice”? I don’t think so! “Vice” was transcendent because it was the first prime time television show that blurred the lines between right and wrong by making you sympathize with, and sometimes even envy, the bad guys. From the first show where Jimmy Smits got blown away by a car bomb, and Sonny had a one night stand with Trudy, and no less than 10 guys fell victim to automatic gun fire, “Vice” went places no other show had ever gone. It’s easy to forget now, but “Vice” wasn’t just a television show, for better or worse, it had an enormous impact on pop culture like few, if any, other shows ever have. You would be hard pressed to find a man between the ages of 28 and 50 that didn’t own a white linen suit and a pastel tie at some point in the 80’s. Hell, there is a picture of me in some old photo album from Easter ‘86 where I’m sporting a white linen suit, a pink shirt, a yellow tie, and a hair full of gel. True story! Am I proud of it? Of course I am.

I could keep rambling on about all the reasons I loved “Vice” in the 80’s and why I’m absolutely jacked up about “Vice” the movie, but I figure the best thing to do is fall back on an old gimmick. That’s right, after a long absence, we’ve got ourselves a brand new Top 7 list:

Top 7 Reasons Why You Should Get Off Your Ass and Go See “Miami Vice” Friday Night:

7) Trans Ams and Cessnas have been replaced with Ferrari’s and G5’s. Newer and faster toys undoubtedly equal bigger explosions. This can’t be bad.

6) Collin Farrell didn’t go to rehab until after filming closed, so there should be no less than 6 scenes where he is visibly drunk or nursing a hangover. In other words, the Irish accent is sure to slip out. Sonny Crockett negotiating with Columbians in an Irish accent = top notch unintentional comedy.

5) In the old days, the traffickers were all Columbians, but in the movie version, Crockett and Tubbs have to deal with Columbians, the Aryan Brotherhood, and a network of traffickers from all around the globe. All this in two hours? Just can’t miss.

4) In the television version, the line between the right and wrong side of the law got blurred at times, but never with Crockett and Tubbs. The trailer for the movie, however, asks, “When you live on both sides of the law…how far is too far?” Yes sir, looks like we’ve got ourselves a moral dilemma on our hands. Always makes for a nice plot twist.

3) Gong Li. I’ll let you do a little internet surfing and figure this one out for yourself.

2) There is a better than average chance that Jamie Foxx has managed to record a song for the movie that will be the background music at a pivotal moment. If I have to explain this one to you, you clearly don’t understand the importance of unintentional comedy.

1) No matter what, no matter whether the story line sucks, or if Jamie Foxx overacts every scene, or if Collin Ferrell absolutely mails it in, the movie is going to be fun. There are going to be plenty of car chases, boat chases, plane chases, plenty of unintentional comedy, gratuitous violence, and maybe even some gratuitous nudity. How can that not be fun?

If I haven’t sold you yet, just take a look back at one of the greatest scenes from the original “Vice” (and one of the top 20 scenes in television history):

Then, take a look at the trailer for the new “Vice”:

If that doesn’t do the trick, I just don’t know what else I can do.