Sunday, July 21, 2019

Janet Jackson - Nasty (1986)

Janet Jackson would have to wait awhile ;-) to break into the top 40 as the efforts from her eponymous debut (1982) and Dream Street (1984) made little noise.  But once she teamed up with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Janet's career was launched into the stratosphere.  Her Control album was a commercial and critical success with five of the six singles released reaching the top 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Janet earning her first of many number one hits with When I Think Of You.  

For her second single, Nasty, Janet brought the bad-ass attitude and let it be known she was a force to be reckoned with.  In the video, she spars with Dennis Franz in a trenchcoat a bunch of nasty boys throughout downtown Los Angeles, reading them to filth while dancing in it.  Moves were provided by Paula Abdul, who picked up an MTV Video Music Awards for Best Choreography.

Location: Janet's Newsstand & Liquor Store
Address: 7th Street & Main Street, Los Angeles, CA

Republic Liquor is no longer, but U2 created hysteria when they shot their video for Where The Streets Have No Name on top of this building a year after Ms. Jackson If You're Nasty strutted past it.

Location Visited: October 2016

Related Locations:

Janet Jackson - Let's Wait Awhile (1987)Janet Jackson - Rhythm Nation (1989)Janet Jackson - Escapade (1990)

Sunday, July 14, 2019

The Wonder Years (1988-1993)

What would you do if I sang out of tune?  Would you stop visiting this blog? The Wonder Years was a coming-of-age dramedy for baby-boomers as Kevin Arnold recalled his adolescent years in a middle-class suburban family during a time of great change in America.  As a child of the decade of excess, I didn't quite meet the demographic for The Wonder Years, but I remember ABC promoting the hell out of it so I tuned in, partly because I watched it's lead-in, Who's The Boss? (1984-1992).  I was just a casual viewer but one episode I remember is when Mrs. Arnold doesn't want Kevin to play football and takes him shopping for new pants, some awfully roomy in the crotch.  It wasn't until years later did I realize adult Kevin was narrated by Marv from Home Alone (1990).  The show was a hit with critics, had Emmy nominations up the wazoo and is found on many "best television shows of all time" lists.

Location: The Arnold House
Address: 516 University Avenue, Burbank, CA

Location: Winnie's House #1
Address: 525 University Avenue, Burbank, CA

Location: Winnie's House #2
Address: 501 Tufts Avenue, Burbank, CA

Location: Paul's House
Address: 536 University Avenue, Burbank, CA

Locations Visited: October 2018

Friday, July 5, 2019

Legally Blonde (2001)

California blonde Elle Woods will do anything to get her man Warren back, even if it means going to law school.  Gidget goes eastward after being accepted to Harvard Law.  Her case quickly appears futile as Warren objects to her appeal since he's aligned himself with the frigid Vivian Kensington, whose hair and wardrobe are capital offenses ;-)  Elle quickly rebounds under the tutelage of Emmett Richmond and by landing a career-defining internship, eventually winning her first case!  

Legally Blonde was the sleeper hit during the summer of 2001 and was a breakout role for Reese Witherspoon, catapulting her to the A-list.  A multitude of comedic moments, a strong supporting cast and a pick-up move that swept a nation, Legally Blonde warmed the hearts of women and mens rea ;-)  The film spawned a sequel in 2003, a Broadway musical and a second sequel is planned for 2020.  Hopefully it recaptures the spirit of the first film so moviegoers won't have to be subpoenaed to sit through it.

Legally Blonde was filmed in Pasadena, Sierra Madre, Beverly Hills, Santa Ana, La Canana and Los Angeles, CA

Location: The Delta Nu Sorority House
Address: 200 N Michillinda Avenue, Sierra Madre, CA

This was also Christina Crawford's Convent in Mommie Dearest (1981)

Location: Harvard Quad
Address: 132 N Euclid Avenue, Pasadena, CA  All Saints Episcopal Church Garden Patio

This was also Dorothy & Lucas' Church on The Golden Girls (1985-1992) and The Church from Cruel Intentions (1999)

Location: Neptune's Beauty Nook 
Address: 625 S Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia, CA

Location: The "Costume" Party House
Address: 3800 Homer Street, Los Angeles, CA

The house is part of the Heritage Square Museum. The gate was closed at the time I visited, but likely it was the first house so I was still able to get some photos... 

Locations Visited: March 2016, October 2018