Our readers likely did many things last week, but switching off the computer wasn't one of them. Instead, they wrote hundreds of sizzling comments about filmmaker Kevin Smith, the Olive Garden restaurant chain and how the city of Los Angeles frittered away $2 million on a needless study.
"A lot of critics are saying that Kevin Smith's new movie Red State is not a horror movie, not a great movie and not an independent movie," writes Chris Ceballos.
"I just saw it last night and I think the critics are wrong. If a horror movie is about human beings doing evil things to other human beings, then Red State is a horror movie. If a great movie is one that entertains, inspires a catharsis and has something important to say, then Red State is a great movie. If an independent movie is one where the artists get to tell exactly the story they want to tell, without financiers or marketers telling them to make changes for profit considerations, then Red State is an independent movie — even with an Academy Award–winning actress in the cast.
"And isn't it interesting that the best horror movies always seem to be independent movies. Red State belongs on the same shelf of great, indie horror flicks."
Reader Ben McLewee sounds weary of Smith's critics: "I love his films. He's a great guy, but sadly lives in a world three-quarters full of wankers. He definitely deserves better from people who slag him off for the sake of it. Now give that penis a sandwich."
A reader identified as Scrotie McBoogerballs does not agree about Smith. "This guy is such a douche," he writes. "I never thought he was funny. His lame attempts at humor and use of offensive material come off like a community college student who still makes fart noises in the classroom like a third grader. I'm not offended by the jokes, they're just not funny. Clerks was probably the worst movie I have seen in my life."
(Parents: If your last name is McBoogerballs, please exercise care with first name.)
City Council Blows $2 Million
Readers reacted harshly to our story on how the City Council spent $2 million on a study examining the details of a proposal to lease city parking garages to a private operator. After buying the study, the council rejected the lease idea because constituents opposed it — a finding the council could have made before commissioning the study.
"This is why we need term limits in all elected public servant offices," writes Woody McBreairty. "There is no such thing as economizing or conserving when you're pulling money from a cold and faceless ATM machine that somebody keeps stocking from the other side. I have often wondered if politics breeds corruption or if corrupt people seek political office because it's their big chance to party on free beer and that once they get their sticky little hands on city money, there is no end to the fun they can have, not to mention the power."
A reader identified as lacityworkers.com writes: "This explains why hardworking civil servants are footing the bill for the council's irresponsible spending."
Gold vs. Olive Garden
Jonathan Gold's story about an April Fools' Day prank that backfired seemed innocent enough. Our restaurant critic persuaded a colleague to join him for a meal at an Olive Garden. He intended to reveal the joke on arrival, then leave for a nearby steak house. But Gold got stuck in traffic, and by the time he arrived his colleague had already ordered. So he stayed and wrote about the food. He didn't like it one bit — opening him up to hate mail from Olive Garden fans.
Gonedeep43 writes: "People who go to Olive Garden don't give a crap what you think. This self-important tool thinks that everyone cares what he has to say about a easy target like Olive Garden. What's next? Popeyes Chicken?"
To which Guest replies: "Takes two seconds to Google and you will see he gives Popeyes a good review. Gold doesn't care what you think, as he's too busy eating at and writing about places with good food."
Ed Kim writes: "Reviewing the Olive Garden? Times like this makes me feel like Western civilization is about to collapse."
Of Gold's critics, Citizenrobot writes: "Deep fried lasagna has never appeared in the cookbooks of Lidia Bastianich, Marcella Hazan, Mario Batali or anyone with a functional brain and set of taste buds who has ever stepped foot in Italy. Expand your horizons. Stop treating food like it's another thing you get at the mall."
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Nunyo Bidness writes: "Wow that was the douchiest review I ever read. Olive Garden may not be the highest cuisine on the planet, but it is also not that bad. I have not ever seen the author but I bet he wears black-rimmed birth control glasses and skinny jeans."
(OK, that's just a lucky guess.)
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