Wednesday, November 12, 2014

2nd Doctor Part I

The Doctor playing the recorder?  One more reason to watch the classic series

The Second Doctor was hit the hardest by the BBC’s tape wiping policy.  Not a single serial from his first season survives in its entirety, and the two serials from the second season we have were only completed in 1991 and 2013.  It’s a shame too because Patrick Troughton, who played the Second Doctor, is arguably the best actor to ever take on the role

The Highlanders

The Second Doctor’s Second serial, like the preceding serial The Power of the Daleks is completely gone.  The Highlanders has the distinction of being the last “pure historical” until the 1980’s, but no one’s seen it in about 50 years, so moving right along…

'There can only be one."

 The Macra Terror

Remember those giant crab things from the Tenth Doctor episode Gridlock?  Well you probably forgot, but they were called Macra.  They’re from this serial which has been completely wiped.  I wouldn’t have brought it up, but I said I’d tie all this to the new series, so…That’s all I got.
Crab People...Crab People

The Tomb of the Cybermen

The Doctor & Co. come across some swarthy Logicians leading some “Americans” to the titular Tombs of the Cybermen.  I’ve heard British Subjects make fun of Dick Van Dyke’s accent in Mary Poppins, but now I’ve got a basis for comparison.  Robert Pattinson’s phony bologna accent from Twilight sounds like John Wayne compared to the “Americans” in Tombs of the Cybermen.  In this serial the Cybermen are pretty fucking unsettling.  After this serial, on into the new series, The Cybermen just become robots that used to be people.  In Tombs of the Cybermen they are still creepy emotionless almost-people, with weird voices; more uncanny valley than killer robots.  I’m talking prosthetic chin in Looper or Duracell plastic people weird.

This serial is also noteworthy because Matt Smith (the 11th Doctor) reportedly called Steven Moffatt (the current showrunner) in the middle of the night, after watching Patrick Troughton’s performance in this.  The Eleventh Doctor more than any other was the spiritual successor to the Second Doctor (anarchic and silly, with a very cold edge.)  If you like Matt Smith you should definitely give this one a gander.  As you may have guessed, based on the title, the 12th Doctor Serial Dark Water borrows imagery from this serial (with the Cybermen in tombs and all.)

The Enemy of the World

In this one Patrick Troughton plays both the 2nd Doctor and Salamander, a tyrant bent on global domination, who just so happens to be a perfect non-genetic twin of the 2nd Doctor. Lame trope aside, Patrick Troughton really shows off his acting chops in this one, making The Doctor, Salamander, and the Doctor pretending to be Salamander into three distinct nuanced characters.  I don’t think there’s a word like “ageist” for being prejudiced towards believing that television is better now than it’s ever been, but if there is I definitely have it.  While you can find faults which may not be present in a contemporary series like Mad Men, the script it pretty fucking good; thought provoking and well paced. 
Starring Patrick Troughton & Patrick Troughton with his hair parted differently

The Web of Fear

This marks the second appearance of The Great Intelligence, which you may recall from the new series’ The Snowmen, The Bells of St. John, or The Name of the Doctor.  The Great Intelligence had appeared previously in The Abominable Snowmen, but that serial has been almost completely wiped so there’s not much to say about that.  The Web of Fear features Robot Yeti and future major character Brigadier (Colonel) Leftbridge-Stewart. 

To this day the Doctor and Company frequently wander into situations where people are trapped and under attack; sometimes it’s a in spaceship, sometimes it’s in a castle, other times it’s in a really big spaceship, you get the idea. The base under siege is a well worn trope of Doctor Who, especially in the Second Doctor era.  The Web of Fear is one of the best base under siege stories in an era packed to the gills with cybermen and other monsters trapping people in things. So it’s worth checking out.
If Milwaukee's Best is "The Beast"  Milwaukee's Best Ice is "The Yeti," it's also "The Worst"

More 2nd Doctor next week.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The First Doctor Part 2

If only Garfield was this.

I'm going through classic Doctor Who Doctor by Doctor highlighting some of the important things.

The Romans

I remember enjoying this one, but present it mostly for varieties sake.  The Romans is another pure historical, but this time the show uses a historical setting as a backdrop for comedic farce instead of serious violent history type things.  The TARDIS grants The Doctor not only the ability to travel anywhere in time or space, but frees The Doctor from fixed genre constraints.  I don’t really watch shows about sex/murder detectives in Miami, but I have a pretty good idea what those kind of shows are all about (solving sex/murder cases in the Greater Miami area.)  Doctor Who on the other hand can be a comedy, action, horror, or whatever else is wants to be.

In this serial it kind-of-sort-of seems like Barbara and Ian are maybe kind of into each other (if you know what I mean.)  It would be only natural for two people from a similar background, forced into life or death situations miles and years from home to fall in love.  And maybe they did, but the issue is never addressed directly or really at all.  I’m all for keeping Doctor Who family friendly, but it was weirder not to talk about.  We’ll get into it more later, but the original series maintained this creepily asexual tone throughout the rest of its 25 year run, at times crossing into dude-that-doesn’t-jackoff-or-use-contractions-when-speaking territory.
Nero is burning Rome, and hilarity ensues

The Web Planet

Speaking of variety, this serial is about as weird as the show ever got.  I didn’t like it that much, but it’s certainly worth mentioning.
Yup, pretty much

The Time Meddler

Remember those beer commercials where two guys would be at a bar arguing whether to watch C-Span or Kung-Fu movies?  Well the joke was that they’d resolve the conflict by hitting the TV with a beer and watching “both,” so like there’d be congressmen karate chopping each other’s heads off and gauging eyes to the delight of all bar the patrons.  The Time Meddler did that for Doctor Who.  It was the first historical with sci-fi elements, which would become the show’s bread and butter over the next fifty years.  The titular Time Meddler is also the second Time Lord in the show’s history after The Doctor.  Thus begins the canon of the Whoniverse.
Other entries include sumo high-diving & fish baseball

The War Machines

Remember how I said that The Doctor was kind of a borderline malevolent asshole when the show started?  Well they’d softened him up throughout the first few seasons, adding things like humour (British misspelling) and empathy to his character.  By this point Ian And Barbara were gone and The Doctor was firmly the main character of his own show.  War Machines was the next big step, the first time the Doctor fought the bad guys just because it was the right thing to do.  From War Machines onward The Doctor is a hero.  I think it’s cool Doctor Who had an organic transition from crotchety, cowardly, selfish old man to hero and not some hero-cycle rubbed in the ground bullshit.  The Doctor’s new role also provided new motivation for the TARDIS crew to stick around once they landed rather than getting captured over and over again.
" the War Machine Keeps turning. Death and Hatred to mankind poisoning their brainwashed minds..."
The Tenth Planet

I’ve never seen this one, and neither has anyone else in a long long time.  Apparently back in the 1970’s VHS tapes were pretty expensive, so the BBC took old tapes of Doctor Who and recorded over them.  For those that grew up in the VHS era: imagine your mom taped over part of your copy of Ghostbusters with LA Law, only the copy she taped over was the master tape so the beginning of Ghostbusters is gone forever and instead we have Jimmy Smits pretending to be a lawyer on every copy in existence.
Of course some things could probably just get taped over.

The Tenth Planet was also the first Cybermen story and the first regeneration story.  When I started watching the classic series in order I was in a hurry to get through the First Doctor, and get to the colour version of the show I remember watching as a kid, but I ended up missing the First Doctor much more than I originally anticipated.

We'll get into it more with the second Doctor and episodes I've actually seen, but the Cybermen used to be creepy as fuck.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The First Doctor Part 1

Not quite a George Washington, not quite a skullet.  Great hair though.

I watched the episodes of the classic series I could easily get my hand on in more or less chronological order.  I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the same approach.  It’s not that the First Doctor’s era is bad, but it’s very different from the show on the telly (British slang!) today, not to mention modern telly-vision.  Also, the episodes frequently descended into members of the Tardis crew getting captured, rescued by the rest of the crew, who themselves get captured.  Fortunately the people originally captured are now free to liberate the recently captured.  I felt dirty padding out a paragraph with that sentence.  The early writers of Doctor Who sometimes felt comfortable stretching that sentence into 2-3 episodes.

Serials of note (Some good, some not as good.  Read the description):

 An Unearthly Child

Doctor Who begins with  history teacher, Barbara Wright, and a science teacher, Ian Chesterton, discussing brilliant, but weird student named Susan Foreman.  They decide to figure out what her game is, so they follow her home to the now familiar police box.  They go inside, and in a real dick move the Doctor decides he can’t let them leave, so he takes them back to 100,000 B.C. and the rest, as they say, is history.

The most amazing thing about the first serial is how little it has in common with the modern series or indeed the rest of the classic series.  For one thing the Doctor is a selfish asshole, not the hero we’ve come to expect.  More to the point the Doctor isn’t even the main character; the whole thing is from Barbara and Ian’s point of view, and not just in a clever Moffat-y “get to-know-the-new-Doctor” sort of way.  Although the show firmly became The Doctor’s by the end of the first Doctor’s run, most of the early serials focus on the companions. 

It’s also noteworthy that the aforementioned Susan Foreman is The Doctor’s granddaughter?  This would seem to imply that The Doctor also has at least one child, and by extension The Doctor has also fucked.  None of this has ever been touched on again in the classic series or the new.  I only bring it up because it’s weird as shit.
The Doctor's granddaughter
The Daleks

This serial is sort of a generic “monster of the week” affair, but the monster in this case happened to be the iconic Dalaks.  While the plot is most notable for being the very first “monster of the week” Doctor Who story the design of the Daleks was an instant success, and Dalekmania took the UK by storm.  As important as the Daleks are to the show’s mythos, they’re even more important as the show’s first big hit.  Instead of being “that sci-fi show”  Doctor Who became “that sci-fi show with the Daleks.”  Other than the debut of the Daleks this story is just kind of meh.
This picture is awesome
The Aztecs *available on Netflix*

Doctor Who originally began with an educational agenda (hence the two schoolteachers.) Part of the original idea is that Doctor Who would travel to historical places and sciencey sci-fi places to teach kids about history and…Daleks I guess.  The historical serials were straight-up history with no sci-fi elements, save time travel, thrown in. You don’t have to worry about talking space-pumpkins or werewolves in Aztec times because there were goddamned Aztecs there practicing human sacrifice.  Serials of this type eventually went the way of the Aztec’s themselves, but I still think there’s room on the show for a little realistic culture shock horror.  Also, The Doctor kind-of, sort-of has a girlfriend in this episode, which is about as close as he comes to having a girlfriend until the new series.  This serial also establishes that you can’t change history, an antecedent to the fixed point nonsense of the current series 
Barbara as an Aztec God.  If someone asks if you/re a God you say yes.

1st Doctor Part Deux coming right up.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Classic Doctor Who: Intro to the Classic Series

Well it’s finally happened; that weird British sci-fi show I used to watch on PBS in preschool and early grammar school has become a pop-culture phenomenon.  Doctor Who is bigger on both sides of the pond than it’s ever been before.  Time was, people didn’t even know to make fun of me for watching Doctor Who, because they had no idea what the hell it was. Nowadays, there’s more Doctor Who merchandise for sale at the mall than Duck Dynasty or maybe even The Big Bang Theory.
If this game is about murdering the cast to The Big Bang Theory I will definitely buy it
Since the series’ rebirth I’ve heard a number of Nu-Whovians express interest in the classic series.  As someone who has seen nearly every episode I thought I could provide some unique insight to those looking to either watch old Doctor Who or just read about it a little bit.  Also , it just gives me an excuse to talk about Doctor Who, my favorite thing to talk about other than women of Doctor Who.
Nicola Bryant: Classic series, classic babe
A few things you should keep in mind before attempting to watch the classic series:

1. Each story in the classic series was aired as a serial

In their original transmission the episodes were about half as long as those of the new series, and while there was the occasional two-parter, most serials were 4 to 6 parts with some as long as twelve parts.  Basically, I’m saying you shouldn’t try to just sit down and watch any of these as a 2hr+ movie.  Each episode has its own arc and (sometimes retarded) cliffhanger ending, which seems kind of weird back to back.  The Doctor is drowning!  Now he’s not.   Some stuff happens.  Now he’s falling off a cliff!  Etc.  Plot holes and pacing issues between episodes also become much more apparent when watched back to back, as opposed to their original weekly viewings in a pre-VHS/DVR/digital streaming/bittorrent era.
The series didn't start receiving commercial home video release until 1983, but it also still does?  Who the fuck is buying VHS in 2014?
2. Low Production Values

Remember how a lot of special effects in the Eccleston era kind of sucked?  Well imagine if your high school drama department was trying to recreate those same effects.  If you don’t have a healthy suspension-of-disbelief you might want to avoid the classic series entirely.
The Myrka is a low-point, even by Classic Dr.Who standards, but still...Look at that fucking thing.
3.  Some serials are really fucking bad.

Fear Her is certainly one of the weaker episodes of the new series, but you don’t know what bad TV is until you see The Twin Dilemma, Warriors of the Deep, or Vern Troyer eating a bunch of mice.  The last one didn’t happen on the show, but it would’ve been bad TV regardless.    
"Double your pleasure."

My plan is to go through the original series Doctor by Doctor and highlight some of the important episodes, some of the good episodes (not always the same thing), and some of the things I just happened to like about each Doctor and his companion AND tie it all back to the new series. 
Speaking of the new series...

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Advice for Teens 4: Advice in Space!

If schoolgirls dressed like this I would still be in High School

Every year Rollingstone used to ask celebrities their advice for that year’s graduating class.  I don’t know if they still do, but I’ve been doing this for the last three years and I thought I’d keep up on the tradition. 

Keep in Touch

K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider
Invariably, every year of high school someone I wasn’t very good friends with would write their phone number in my yearbook followed by a note to “K.I.T” (keep in touch.)  I always thought it would have been funny to call them up a couple weeks later and awkwardly check in, just ring them up and tell them that my summer job bagging groceries was going “swimmingly.”  Assuming we didn’t have much to talk about I would have then repeated the process every couple weeks for the rest of the summer.  Basically, I’m saying you should do what I never did.  I will admit it would probably be a lot funnier if I did it now, 13 years later, “Hi Mrs. Johanson, is Stacy there?  Who am I?  This is Danny from sophomore English.  I’m calling because Stacy asked me, nay, COMMANDED me to keep in touch.  I’m kind of surprised she didn’t tell you- Oh...she’s dead?”  

Start smoking

It’s really hard to quit once you start, and cigarettes are really fucking bad for you. Under normal circumstances I would never recommend anyone start, but lots of people are miserable their whole lives.  More to the point lots of people seem strangely okay with their constant state of unending Hell on Earth.  If that describes you, and if you're okay with that, you might want to consider smoking three packs a day and having a grabber at the age of 50.  Aside from the gift of a slow suicide, smoking also makes you feel pretty good.  So there’s that.
Remember this guy?  If you just graduated high school you don't.  Joe Camel's was axed in 1997, about a year after the average high school senior was born.  Fuck I'm old. 

If a relationship sucks, cash your chips and go home; maybe powerwatch Doctor Who or Battlestar Galactica?  I don’t know, just get the hell out of there.  It won’t get better.  If the person you’re with is great except for one giant flaw you can’t get past I guarantee you there is someone else out there who’s just as great, but isn’t also a compulsive liar, pyromaniac, teenage-vampire, or what have you.  Even if the flaw isn’t that big a deal or even if you're pretty positive it's just a figment of your imagination I’d still suggest you cut and run.  There’s a 50% chance you’re actually the crazy one.  Why take someone else down with you? 
Van Halen & Guns N’ Roses are NOT Hair Bands

I guess this isn't really advice.  But if they're not teaching this kind of thing in school, or Rollinstone for that matter (ostensibly a Rock n Roll magazine) you should probably be learning it somewhere. For the record I actually likes some hair bands, but it’s important to set the record straight.  It’s bad enough that Twisted Sister and Def Leppard both fall under the broad "hair metal" umbrella, but seeing Van Halen and GNR lumped in with the likes of Winger is not something I can abide.  First of all, Van Halen formed in 1972 about a decade before hair metal even existed.  Admittedly, the Van Hagar era totally sucked, hard.  Like embarrassingly hard.  For that reason I can see why someone would try to put Van Halen in the hair metal camp.  They’d certainly be wrong to argue that, but it’s an almost understandable mistake; on the other hand the notion that Guns N’ Fucking Roses is a hairband is absolutely ludicrous.  Hairbands wrote about things like “girls, girls, girls,” “cherry pie,” or imploring a girl to “pour some sugar” on you.  GNR wrote songs about bum wine and heroin.  Appetite for Destruction is not only one of the best albums ever recorded, it was a very deliberate reaction against hairmetal about 4 years before Nirvana’s brand of depressing punk went mainstream. 

One more quick primer on the 80's: This is Stryper. They were a Christian metal band that sold MILLIONS of albums.  They were so popular in fact, that the LA Raiders covered one of their songs in an ill-fated Super Bowl Shuffle ripoff.  Even if you've heard of them before you probably forgot they existed.   

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Bottomshelf Beer Reviews: Miller Fortune

History shows again and again how nature points out the folly of man..

Miller just introduced the newest member of the Miller Family:  Miller Fortune, a curious product to say the least.  When most people make a beer I assume they’re making a beer.  When one of the Big Two (MillerCoors & Anheuser-Busch/InBev) makes a beer is has to do with perceived trends, changing markets, and fads. What pray tell is the motive behind Miller Fortune?

Let’s breakdown the commercial:

A bunch of very chic and fashionable people are having the kind of swanky party you’ll never get invited to.  Everyone looks multiethnic and bored.  A low rent knock-off of Jason Statham approaches a hip looking 20-something male.

FakeJasonStatham:  You invited everyone over to watch Wrestlemania, but your telly [British slang] is on the fritz.  Fortune favors the bold.

No one else seems to hear or see Fake Jason Statham, like he’s an angel, or Al from Quantum Leap.  Around this point I notice that the apartment has leather curtains?  Also, Jason Statham imposter hands the dude a Fortune beer and the Wheel of Fortune Home Game.

Cut to: Everyone playing the Wheel of Fortune Home Game and drinking Miller Fortune out of rocks glasses(?).  They’re having a great time.  The dude will presumably get laid

I guess they wouldn’t be watching Wrestlemania or playing board games, but I really have no idea what hep people do for fun.  Clearly, I’m not in the demographic they’re shooting for.  I mean, other than the implication that the guy scores with a hot multi-ethnic chick I can honestly say there is nothing in the commercial that appeals to me, at all, which seems like a misstep on their part.  I drink a lot.
Horniness will always defeat reacism

And circle gets the square.  The answer to the question.  Miller’s not making a beer for people who already drink beer, even if they drink pretty much constantly.  Miller is making a beer for people who don’t drink beer yet.  Apparently, the market for liquor in this country growing, especially amongst young people.  Naturally, Miller wants in, so they’re trying to make a beer for hip young people whom would otherwise be drinking booze based drinks like vodka Redbulls or Malibu Rum.  To that end, they gave Miller Fortune a weird angular jetblack bottle, a Jason Stathame-esque narrator, and curiously suggest that it be served in a rocks glass. 
I was really relieved to see the whole bottle didn't fit in the rock glass.  If it held more than 12oz. it would mean I was drinking way more whiskey that I/d previously thought
As someone who is a decade past his early 20’s, it’s hard for me to judge how effective all this is going to be. Personally, I think if you wanted to be cool you’d rip a picture of John Wayne Gacy in half, show a beer-drinkin’ anthopomorphic crocodile doing tricks on a skateboard, or instead of kind-of, sort-of implying, that the dude drinking beer gets laid make it super obvious, like the girl is a MILF in a Cialis commercial.  Failing that, they should just do what I do: make fun of people who don’t drink beer.  Drinking beer doesn’t make me or anyone else cool, but not drinking beer makes you a dork.
Hitler was a teetotaler IRL 
While I might not know much about being cool, I like to think I know a thing or two about beer.  Miller Fortune tastes boozy, and at 7% alcohol it probably should.  This would seem to play into their previously discussed marketing strategy.  It’s a little bitter like a real beer, with a bit of caramel flavoring, but not a lot of either.  The strongest taste is the graininess you tend to expect from a Miller product.  It’s above average, but is it worth a hefty $12?  In a word: no.  In two words: no-no.  It’s definitely worth grabbing when the bar has a special on Miller Family buckets, but the price point pulls Miller Fortune off the bottomshelf and into direct competition with craft beers and imports.

While Miller Fortune works decently well as a beer to get me drunk, it doesn’t make me feel any cooler or more likely to meet Jason Statham.  Which kind of cuts against their whole point, right?  While I am not cynical enough to suggest that Miller/Coors doesn’t care about the quality of their product; I would say that in this instance flavor definitely takes a backseat to marketing and demographic trends.  While Miller Fortuneis decidedly okay, it remains to be seen if Miller Fortune will be effective in convincing smarmy young people that they should shell out $12 a 12-pack to feel cool.  Only time will tell.
History has already made up its mind on hot ass multi-ethnic girls...


Sunday, March 30, 2014

Jean-Claude Van Damme: ( is not in) PREDATOR (1987)


I know we’re all super excited to get to Bloodsport, but I thought it was worth a mention that chronologically sandwiched in between No Retreat, No Surrender (1986) and Bloodsport (1988) Van Damme was originally slated to bring the agility and martial prowess he displayed in films like Breakin’ to the titular role in one of the greatest action movies of all time, Predator (1987). 

A sexual tyrannosaurus, NOT a sexual predator

As to why Van Damme does not appear as the final film, it depends on who you ask.  The director claims that Jean-Claude quit after two days because he did not feel that an uncredited  Special Effects part was worthy of an actor of his stature.  (perhaps he was riding high on the wave of adulation he garnered in No Retreat, No Surrender?)  Van Damme claims that he refused to do a stunt that was too dangerous, while Jesse “The Body” Ventura claims that Van Damme was fired after injuring another stuntman on purpose.  Of course every one of those people has a motive to fudge the truth, except for Jesse Ventura, he’s just old fashioned fucking insane. The most likely explanation I’ve heard is that Van Damme quit because it was balls hot wearing a full body rubber suit in the goddamned jungle, and if you’ve ever seen the original Predator costume you’d have quit too.  It involved walking on stilts, it had no visible eye-holes, no cool mandibles, and it looked fucking stupid.
Fucking lame
If Jean-Claude had retained the role of nature’s most perfect t killing machine (from space) it’s highly likely that he never would have had the time to make Bloodsport.  One could speculate that with no starring roles and a marquee stunt job to his credit Van Damme may have simply moved into the respectable, if not glamorous, world of fight choreography and stunt coordination.  Personally, I’d rather speculate about what it would have been like if Jean-Claude had a speaking part in Predator.
On set; presumably saying something
"Kwock & Froll!"
It’s hard to imagine improving on perfection, but if anyone could do it Jean-Claude could.  He certainly could not have replaced Carl Weathers or any of the other perfectly casted actors, but I can definitely picture him saying something like “der iz a praydaytorr in dis Jun-Gall!” and then getting skinned alive or blown up by lasers or whatever.  You couple that with a line like, “guh-ood jhoke Haw-kinns” (sarcasm), and I think you have the makings of a role that would add a little Jean-Claude magic to a movie without detracting from the plot in anyway.  If that doesn’t completely convince you, imagine this: what if the Predator killed one more dude?  Like it would be the exact same movie but Predator kills one more person than he did originally, and that person just happens to be Jean-Claude Van Damme.  I think even the harshest Van Damme critic would have to agree that it would be pretty cool to see Van Damme get killed by the Predator.

Van Damme?

The Van Damme in Predator thing is one of history’s great what-ifs, right up there with Lee’s Lost Orders, Operation Sea Lion, and the Battle of Hastings.  Although it’s a fun to ponder what might have been, we must stand back from the precipice, lest we slide down the slippery slope of speculative fiction.  Before you know it we could be having a serious discussion about a hypothetical army of Jean-Claude Van Damme clones overrunning the Imperial base on the forest moon of Endor, and that’s not something I want to do so let’s get back to the movies that actually star Jean-Claude Van Damme
Alternative history dorks think we'd all be flying dirigibles if it wasn't for the Hindenberg. Riiiight...

Next time: Probably a beer review and then Bloodsport. 
Ogre drinking a beer in Bloodsport.  It took awhile to find an image that worked for both.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Bottomshelf Beer Reviews: Stag Beer

St. Louis is famous for its giant arch, and not much else off the top of my head.  It’s a cool town though as long as you think industrial towns in the Midwest are cool.  I do.  I really don’t feel comfortable in places without shitty weather or the populace doesn't eat copious amounts of meat and drink a lot of beer.  To that end St. Louis has BBQ, Budweiser, and Stag Beer. 
The only beer endorsed by Mr. Magoo
Can't wait till "Lou" get naked
Stag is the second deer-themed beer it’s my privilege to review.  This time instead of concentrating on anthropomorphic deer on human felatio I thought I would move on to Stag films.  It may surprise those of you that grew up with full streaming bukkake videos on your phone, but time was, the only way for heterosexual men to watch porn was together at a “Stag Party.”  For my part I grew up in the VHS era, and free from the constraints of obtaining a film print, reel-to-reel projector, and movie screen a man could jack off by himself in the privacy of his own home; unless he were underage, which I certainly was.  When I was in Junior High the only way to watch porn movies was at someone’s house when his parents were out of town and his dad had some porno movies in the closet.  The movies were always a few years old, when the pubic aesthetics could best be described as “full monkey,” and were directed as though the single most erotic thing in the world was an extreme close-up of full penetration from like half-an-inch away.

It was like watching surgery

As to why Stag chose a name that may or may not call to mind the uncomfortable experience of getting all horned up in a room full of other dudes, the can offer some explanation, promising “golden quality since 1851,” which would mean that Stag Beer predates rudimentary motion pictures by about four decades, let alone movies where some chick and her horny roommate fuck the cable guy.  Further investigation reveals that that 1851 marks the foundation of Western Brewery, whom launched “Kaiser Beer” in the early 1890’s.  Kaiser Beer would go on to be Western’s flagship brand; however Americans began to grow weary of buying a beer named for a foreign despot so in 1907 they changed the name to “Stag Beer.”  Good thing too, because we fought two wars with the Savage Hun in the succeeding decades.  By the 1950’s Stag was available in 22 States and Western Brewery was the 11th largest in the country, but it was not to last.  Nowadays Stag is pretty much only available in Missouri, Arkansas, and the parts of Illinois that aren’t anywhere near Chicago.  The purple Monopoly if you will.
Those motherfuckers...
As to the quality of the beer, Stag is pretty good.  It’s kind of grainy with some citrusiness to it, pretty typical of American beer.  It’s not very sugary, which is good.  Sweetness in cheap beer is usually a sign that they cut the beer with something that isn’t supposed to go in beer to save money.  On first sip I described Stag as watery, and it is, but not any waterier than your typical American beer.  Actually it seems worse than it is because it has a very mild aftertaste, mild to the point that I didn’t even notice it.  As a bottomshelf beer connoisseur I wasn’t prepared for my sip of beer to be the sum of my beer drinking experience.  Most cheap beers linger with an after-flavor akin to drinking Tang while chewing Altoids or vurping (vomit-burping), but Stag went down smooth and immediately disappeared like that Nigerian Prince I gave all my money to.  It’s like drinking beer as a goldfish.
That Nigerian Prince asshole spent all my money on snakes (like a fucking jerk)

What was I talking about again?  Oh right.  Stag beer.  It’s pretty good.  If you’re ever in the greater St. Louis area I recommend checking it out.  I guess you could just as easily try it out if you’re ever in Arkansas, but if you’re in Arkansas your first goal and top priority should probably be leaving Arkansas.  Nothing good has ever happened there. 
Actually some landmark events in the Civil Rights movement happened there, but that's kind of like crediting Chile for the death of Augusto Pinochet because I guess he died there.
Would you like to know more? Check out the Stag Beer official website. It's actually pretty good.  Kinda endearing to see so many people impassioned by their local beer. Speaking of... 

Would you like to know more? Check out this website for this giant can of Stag.

I like that it lists the volume in gallons