RECAP: BLANKET FORT 4

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Note: this is the first in a weekly series of straight recaps of the preceding week’s Blanket Fort segments, to be followed during the week by ancillary articles related to the episodes’ various subject matter.

BLANKET FORT #4: June 3, 2016. Running time: 31:38

Episode 4 opened with a stray YouTube clip of a shirtless Russian man in the snow attempting to commit insurance fraud.  Filmed with a dash-cam inside a vehicle, the man is captured as he runs toward the vehicle, leaps and does a belly-flop on the hood, and then walks away looking peeved.

This leads us into the first viewer clip, one from first-time contributor Hannah Montana (not the Miley Cyrus one), who contributed a rather sweet and jaunty mashup of punk-pop band blink-182’s “Going Away to College” and the old pop hit “I Think We’re Alone Now” on ukulele with vocal. This turned out to be one of the week’s most praised segments, with kudos bestowed on the talented young Hannah, whom we expect to see more from in the weeks ahead.

Following Hannah was a fascinating clip of a scientist demonstrating chemical reactions within a globule of colored water in a weightless environment, which later is revealed to be on board the International Space Station, for which the video serves as a promotional clip.

Brussels Sprouts fans, rejoyce!
Brussels Sprouts fans, rejoyce!

Next up was “The Brassica Bulletin” by the contributor currently known as Mega Tron. “Brassica Bulletin” is a regular segment that began in week one as a minimalist bit of functionalist performance art (Mega Tron may have invented the genre) in which she cored a cauliflower, a segment that is still commented upon now.  Beginning with Episode 3, Mega has been keeping us abreast of developments in her vegetable garden, where she had planted seeds 16 days prior to Episode 4’s recording, in the still-cool Michigan soil.  The seeds have germinated and are poking leaves up through the straw. One viewer in chat pointed out that Mega Tron would be knowledgeable in a post-apocalyptic scenario, a musing that was met with “That’s the idea…” from the unseen Mega.

Serving as a bumper was a bit of absurdity in the form of an ad in which a dude chucks a 40-ounce bottle from his yard, which knocks a skateboarder unconscious. The skateboard goes flying until it whacks a basketball player to the ground, freeing the basketball, which a doberman chases, dragging its helpless owner by a leash behind it.  Her high pitched screams cause feedback in an elderly man’s hearing aid, making him lose balance and stumble into a doorbell, which startles the man inside practicing archery.  His arrow goes off the mark and shoots down the street, impaling the original bottle thrower, who then staggers into the street and is run over by a truck.  This circle-of-life public service message is from our friends at connect2earth.com [site now redirects to the World Wildlife Federation site]

That is not a spider. That is not like...like grasshopping.
That is not a spider. That is not like…like grasshopping.

Seederman Report, which had been retired in December, made its third appearance in revamped form on Blanket Fort. Now framed as a segment that debunks popular misconceptions, this week’s installment began with a mess of creepy, crawly daddy long legs [aka Harvesters in the U.S.], set to the strains of The Who’s 50-year-old classic, “Boris the Spider”.  We see a house infested with daddy long legs, and a young German man describes his annoyance with the creatures, insinuating that they are unfit to be spiders. Then came the claim: daddy long legs, contrary to popular belief, are not spiders (they lack fangs and venom and have only two eyes) and are more closely related to mites.  This segment received a mixed reception among chat room viewers, which included a disproportionate number of arachnophobes.

The next bumper was another for Trunk Monkey (of Suburban Auto Group), whose series starring a chimpanzee has featured in previous Blanket Forts.  This week’s gag centered on letting Trunk Monkey handle your texting while you drive.  The punchline? Bananas, Bananas, Bananas.

Next up was the regular “Oh My Monkey” segment, which opened with a man with a baby baboon screaming together for the camera and closed with an adult baboon groping the breast of a TV reporter.

Flying is still the safest way to fly
Flying is still the safest way to fly

“Fly High with Muttley”, another regular segment, was hosted by sky pilot Emilio, who has now mastered the art of looking into the camera.  In it, he reassures passengers about the many safety features built into a commercial airliner that protect them should the landing gear ever fail. A plane can land safely without landing gear at all, he tells us reassuringly, while an accompanying video raises more questions than it answers.  Muttley ended with his now-famous catchphrase “remember: flying is still the safest way to fly”.

K meets an attempted murderer.
K meets an attempted murderer.

A quick bumper video of a Ferrari inexplicably spinning out and crashing on a Russian freeway followed, and led us into the next segment, “Ask K on the Streets”, a series in which Krystal interviews various criminals and low-lives living near the motel in which she was staying. After a particularly gruesome Episode 3 installment, Episode 4 features an interview with a dodgy-looking man who was freed nine months ago after spending ten years in prison for attempted murder. Audience reception to K’s segments has been strong, with most agreeing that Krystal is fearless about approaching the most dangerous looking characters on the street.

A new segment made its debut, “Let Us Play”, by Lamont.  This was a quick-edit segment that began with people getting whacked in the head with footballs, basketballs, and soccer balls and ended with a blood-curdling arm wrestling match. While this segment seems to revel in its own mindless brutality, the viewer has to ask if there is not a larger statement being presented, such as what it all means to us as people?  The answer may well be bruised heads, but this is probably one new segment to keep an eye on (or a lookout for).

CHaines sees much of the world tilted at a 45 degree angle!
CHaines sees much of the world tilted at a 45 degree angle!

Next, biker CHaines returned with his second Blanket Fort segment, a twisting, winding motorcycle ride through the green hills of Idaho.  Shot in first-person perspective with a Go-Pro or similar attachment, his ride-alongs have become a popular part of Blanket Fort, eliciting a lot of viewer commentary in chat. Some noted vertigo-like feelings while careening around curves, an effect helped by some subtle editing and the propulsive soundtrack of “Living in a Dream” by Arc Angels.  If you’re stuck near a computer all day, Chaines provides some of the outdoors you have been craving!

Vada contemplates horror with her new young friend.
Vada contemplates horror with her new young friend.

A bumper video of one of the worst exits from a parking space in an SUV followed, and the show segued into this week’s “Little People who Make the World Bigger” segment, hosted as always by Vada Callisto, appearing at the Shock Stock convention, a confab for horror and gore fans.  With her was a girl of ten named Kaylin, who discussed her love of classic horror and slasher films.  While Vada expressed some fear and shock at characters like Chuckie and Jason, Kaylin never batted an eye.

The program ended with a spoof ad for Voodoo Mama Hot Sauce, in which the Voodoo Mama gets the last laugh.

Yesterday’s program was preceded by a half hour special featuring Nichole from the rock festival Hangout, parts of which were viewed in Blanket Fort 3.  Full length videos of the featured groups were included.

Blanket Fort recaps will appear every Saturday following new episodes, which air at 8PM Eastern Time on dnnonair.com Look for articles exploring some of the themes, subject matter, contributors, and guests from the show during the week.

 

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