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Pediatricians Want Austism/Vaccines Show Axed

30 Jan

From the DIS News:

The American Academy of Pediatrics is urging Disney’s ABC network to cancel its first episode of ‘Eli Stone’ scheduled to air on Thursday.

The legal drama debuts with a story based on a link between vaccines and autism. A trial ensues in which the lead character discovers that the vaccine manufacturer won’t allow his own child to get the shot which leads to a guilty verdict.

I have to be careful here . . . I don’t want to venture down the road of commenting on the purported link between autism and vaccines. I’ve had a horse in this race, and I have some opinions, but they’re better shared among friends, over coffee (preferably at Kona Cafe, the one decent cuppa java at Walt Disney World).

But I do get a little twitchy when people want fictional shows yanked off the air because they’re afraid people don’t know the difference between drama and news shows. (A certain Mr Quayle comes to mind, and his distaste for a certain television drama featuring a single mom by choice.)

True, there are plenty out there who have a hard time telling the difference between drama and documentary. But does that mean we have to self-censor? The First Amendment isn’t at issue here, since these pediatricians are not acting with the force of government. But there’s a similar chilling effect.

Pirates of the Caribbean, Ratatouille on Disney xD

2 May

Disney Insider today includes a link to a “behind the scenes” video plugging Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, as part of the Disney xD beta web site. And as of May 1, there’s a 9-minute clip from Ratatouille available as well, which is follwed by an especially cool short on the modeling under the animation. Gotta love it when the software engineers get their day in the spotlight! Go go code monkeys!

Disney xD beta is reasonably good at delivering good quality, relatively high-resolution video. Given that I’ve been on the couch watching back episodes of Lost on ABC.com’s online video viewer (curse you, bronchitis!!), I can’t help but compare the two (and of course, the fact that both sites are coming out of the same parent company invites comparison anyway). ABC lets you go full-screen, with whatever loss of image quality results, while Disney xD seems to be constraining the image size to the actual pixels of the video, giving you better quality images but perhaps not as large an image as you’d prefer. And maybe it’s not a coincidence that this means Disney xD still has plenty of room on your screen for ads.

kottke.org today implies that the Ratatouille clip might not be viewable on Disney xD by those outside the US, and provided the link to this YouTube (which sadly does not include the second clip about the awesomeness of software engineers):

I was able to find the POTC behind-the-scenes video there as well:

Is Treatment Available for Being a Jerk?

25 Jan

DIS News has reposted the New York Times piece: ABC TV Star Is Seeking Counseling After Epithet.

Isaiah Washington, the “Grey’s Anatomy” star who twice used an anti-homosexual slur against one of that show’s co-stars, is seeking counseling for behavioral issues at the suggestion of his employers, the ABC television network and Touchstone Television, both part of the Walt Disney Company.

Forgive me for a very non-Disney moment here . . . all I can think of right now is Divine’s speech from the end of Pink Flamingos: “Connie Marble: You stand convicted of asshole-ism.”And ya know, I wasn’t aware they had effective treatment for that disorder.

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