Welcome to an excellent installment of your Chillpak Hollywood Hour that begins with tales of springtime before a couple of great soapbox moments courtesy of the “sensitivity editing” of Agatha Christie and newspaper headline treatments of black men in the media. An actress who starred in many beloved projects, a screenwriter behind crowd-pleasing movies, a singer in a legendary doo-wop band and the designer responsible for the way Phil smelled throughout his teens and twenties (!) all get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”. Dean champions Cocaine Bear, Elizabeth Banks, and the return of Nicolas Cage (not that he went anywhere). Phil regales with amazing original casting choices for a couple of popular recent films before launching into an appreciation of the fable-making on display in John Wick: Chapter 4.
This week’s show begins with “What We’re Reading” and continues by asking such big questions as: Is the John Wick franchise the best action franchise ever? Is “Andor” the best iteration of Star Wars ever? Is “Severance” one of the best television series ever? Was there anything memorable from last week’s Oscar telecast? Are the prosecutors in the Alec Baldwin Rust shooting case arriving to work each day in a clown car? Was comic strip “Dilbert” a victim of cancel culture? Are the edited versions of the James Bond novels coming out an effort to get ahead of cancel culture or a shameless money grab? Both? Is Peacock’s “Poker Face” Rian Johnson’s remake of “Columbo” or “The Fugitive”? Or both? All that gets discussed and three popular actors get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”.
The bulk of this week’s show is comprised of two pre-recorded interviews with special guests. The first was a conversation between Phil and Eric Kurland, the pre-eminent authority on the art, science and history of 3-D. The second was recorded last weekend on Santa Monica Boulevard in Hollywood outside the Broadwater Plunge (with a live audience of one, who ends up playing a supporting role), as Dean and Phil hoped to catch up with their friend Eric Mark about his recent trip to the Sundance Film Festival, the successful sci-fi podcast he produces, his many game show appearances and the harrowing health travails he has endured. Only the last of these really gets much coverage in a freewheeling, head-spinning, hilarious conversation on the mean streets of Hollywood.
Dean is back in Los Angeles and Phil picks him up at the Eastern Columbia and they take to the mean streets of Los Angeles at the outset of this week’s show! Topics discussed include Dean’s experiences with the late character actor Tom Sizemore, the live-streamed Chris Rock special on Netflix, and the disappearance of the great actor Julian Sands. Then, Phil is joined (via zoom) by Yoshi Kato to discuss the career and legacy of jazz great Wayne Shorter, and later, Phil is joined (via zoom) by Marc Hershon, who shares a great story about the late comedian-turned-actor Richard Belzer. After that, and after several cocktails in Hollywood (!), it’s back into the car for a return trip to the Eastern Columbia where Phil stumps Dean with a very interesting trivia question pertaining to the relevancy of the Oscars. This leads to Dean and Phil deciding (for the first time) to not do any Oscar-related show this year, though they do establish one way in which the Academy Awards probably do matter culturally.