Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Strange Convergences

I know I said last week that on Friday my friend and I were going to go out and see The King's Speech, but unfortunately it didn't pan out. The show was sold out when we arrived, because apparently I failed to take in how ridiculously hopping the 7th Street Movie Tavern would be last Friday. Sigh. So we were bummed we couldn't see the movie, and there didn't seem to be anything else playing soon that looked interesting to us, so we decided to just grab dinner instead. It would give us the chance to chat anyway, rather than just sitting next to each other in silence. We picked a restaurant, went in, and were told it would be an hour's wait. Sigh. Nope, not so much.

While I had been driving around looking for a place to park (the garage was, like the theater, packed), I had noticed that I ended up close to a restaurant called Dos Gringos. Now, I have driven past this restaurant often in the twelve years I've been in Fort Worth, and I have mocked its name relentlessly in that time, but I have never actually eaten there. But, it was off the main stretch, away from the throng of hipsters who were thwarting our evening out, and the price point seemed to fit what we were looking at, so we figured what the heck and gave it a try. Okay, the food, it was not spectacular, and the service was a weensy bit lacking, but it wasn't terrible, and my friend and I had a mostly enjoyable meal and some good conversation, so the evening was not a total loss. We had fun, it was good. But I gotta say, the place was weird. My friend commented on how it just had a lot of pieces that didn't seem to fit together correctly, as if someone had dumped the pieces of two different puzzles in one box and mixed them up. The primary example of this was the live band in the bar. I'll be honest with you, I didn't even realize the band was live until about halfway through dinner, I really just thought they had a classic light rock station on. What's that, you say? Classic light rock in a Mexican restaurant? (Well, Tex-Mex.) Not Tejano? Not Country? Nope. Strange. Even the list of songs they played was a strange mix--ranging from Neil Diamond to Tom Petty's "Last Dance With Mary Jane." Also, their bathrooms were freezing.

Oh well, at least now I have a valid reason to mock the place, right? Also, my friend and I had a good time, which was the important thing.

I have to say, I was a little bummed I wasn't gonna get to get my Colin Firth on though. So I was super excited on Saturday when I discovered that Syfy's cheesy movie of the week was one I hadn't seen starring Kavan Smith. Yay! This week's monster flick, Iron Invader, was actually pretty darn amusing to me, I have to say. It had a super silly plot about alien bacteria that feeds off of metal taking over a big statue made out of scrap and wandering around a small town in Idaho, killing people by sucking all of the metal out of their blood. The effects were spectacularly low-budget (I am pretty sure the "bacteria" was just neon green paint with iron fillings mixed in that were manipulated with a magnet). But it was the casting, man, the casting is what really got me.

Here is the conversation I imagine the casting people had when putting together this movie:

"Hey, who is our lead for this one?"

"Kavan Smith."

"Oh, hey, yeah. He's cool. I loved him in Stargate Atlantis, and isn't he on Eureka now, too? Oh, and he had a brief appearance in Battlestar Galactica....dang, I think he's been in just about all of our big franchises, hasn't he?"

"Huh. I guess he has. Hey, you know what would be funny?"

"What's that?"

"Let's cast a bunch of people from all of the other Syfy shows he's been in!"

"Yeah, right on!"

So....this resulted in the cast being rounded out with:

Nicole de Boer, who appeared in the Stargate Atlantis episode "Whispers."

(Interesting fun side fact number one: She was also in the movie Cube with another SGA alum, David Hewlett.)

Donnelly Rhodes, who you may know better as Doc Cottle from Battlestar Galactica.

Paul McGillion, who you may know better as Doctor Carson Beckett from Stargate Atlantis (and who in this film for some strange reason had a southern accent, even though he was playing a small town sheriff in Idaho).

(Interesting fun side fact number two: Donnelly Rhodes was also a series regular on Canadian series Da Vinci's Inquest--which is, as far as I can gather, the equivalent of Law & Order in the Canadian acting community--and Paul McGillion made a guest appearance on that series back in the day.)

Chris Gauthier, who you may know better as Vincent from Eureka.

(Interesting fun side fact number three: Paul McGillion and Christ Gauthier and Kavan Smith have all made guest appearances on Syfy's Sanctuary.)

I know people joke about Syfy owning the actors that appear in their original series and "forcing" them to do these silly made-for-television movies, but dude. My head was seriously about to explode going over how connected all of these actors were. It was crazy. In the most awesome way possible.

I think that, along with The Room at the End of the Hall (or The Nightmare at the End of the Hall, depending on which country you are in), Iron Invader will be one of those television movies that I regularly record whenever it comes on. You gotta love those guilty pleasure movies, eh?

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