An okay evening at Spike TV’s “Guys Choice” Awards

We’re fussy about Red Carpet events here at Bullz-Eye central. That’s largely because as a lone, online writer you’re pretty much at the mercy of the publicity gods in terms of who you’re going to meet up with and you never know who that’s going to be. One condition we have is that we get to see the show/movie/what-have-you in question so, if all else fails, we can write about that or at least get a bit of entertainment and free food. In this case, that was a good thing. Not because we didn’t get to talk to anybody interesting, but because Spike TV’s “Guys Choice” presentation, which premieres on the network at 9:00 Eastern/6:00 PDT Friday is not your usual award show.

Right down to the sexy female dancers who liven up the breaks and its highly distinctive award statue, “the Mantlers,” it’s easily the most laid back and honestly silly awards show I’ve seen. It’s also the only award show we know of which contains R-rated profanity in one of its award titles: the “Funniest Motherf*cker” award, this year being given to Jim Carrey. It’s safe the say the show was completely irreverent about everything, except for its commendable commitment to drawing attention to the bravery and sacrifices made by members of our armed forces.

Speaking of Jim Carrey, the famed comic provided a remarkable bit of comedy dealing with the always absolutely never hilarious topic of..oh, Lord, we’d better just leave it alone. You don’t want to know. Carrey himself made it clear that children and other sensitive people were better off not hearing the routine before proceeding with a shocking and explosively funny performance, abetted by the sensitive stylings of violinist Neil Hammond.

More traditionally edgy and hilarious at certain points, but a lot longer, was a marathon bit by faux canine Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog, aka comic genius Robert Smigel. The latter merited a bad on-camera review from Sean Penn who between this show and his criticism of Ricky Gervais at Golden Globes, seems to be developing a side career as a real-time award show comedy critic.

Mila Kunis at the Spike Guy's Choice AwardsJustin Timberlake less controversially proved himself to be, once again, no comic slouch, while promoting the charms of the co-star of his next flick, “Friends with Benefits,” the beautiful and talented Mila Kunis. Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards distinguished himself by simply being alive to pick up his award and being the innately humourous individual he is.

And so it went. I’ll have a few choice quotes from the show at the end of this piece. First, though, let’s talk about the folks we met on the Red Carpet.

Sadly, but not unexpectedly, the likes of Kunis, Carry, Timberlake, Richards, Jennifer Aniston, Penn and presenter/winners Mark Wahlberg and Robert De Niro were kept far away from the likes of us. Even Triumph was on too short a leash to be within licking distance. Nevertheless, we did speak to a few folks of interest to a great many guys, with Mixed Martial Arts lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez leading the way.

What your correspondent knows about sports in general and this very new sport in particular would fit on the head of a smaller than average pin, but I nevertheless ventured a couple of questions with the Philadelphia-bred 27 year-old, nicknamed “the Silent Assassin.” Because my mind naturally goes to the controversial place, I asked about the safety issue in regards to his somewhat controversial calling. Alvarez was ready to reassure me.

“The MMA sport has been proven to be safer than many other sports. There’s a misconception out there and that’s why some of the top fighters in each [MMA] organization are out there to educate people…The fighters that are going out there to fight are prepared. They know what they’re getting into and the sport is a lot safer than people think.”

So, had Alvarez’s fighting success led him to any interesting career places? “I fight every so often on MTV [he’s emerged victorious on ‘Bully Beatdown’]. I’ve been all over the world — Japan, Russia, Costa Rica,” said Alvarez who certainly seemed to be enjoying his day in the sun.

Next up was actor Robert Romanus, an actor with over 50 credits to his name but whose claim to movie fame remains playing the swaggering Mike Damone, who schools Mark “Rat” Ratner (Brian Becker) on the ways of sex in the now legendary teen comedy, “Fast Times at Ridgemont High.” The movie was being saluted by Guys Choice and Romanus was there as part of a group that included director Amy Heckerling (who still looks too young to be directing movies), and Oscar winners Forest Whitaker and Sean “Don’t Call Me Spicoli” Penn.

I couldn’t help bringing up what everybody brings up, the large number of actors in the cast who went on to greater fame, including also Jennifer Jason Leigh and such bit players as Eric Stoltz, Anthony Edwards, and, uh, Nicolas Cage. I don’t know what meanness brought out this rather impossible question, but did anyone’s subsequent success surprise him? (What’s he supposed to say, “Yeah, that Penn kid and Jennifer Jason What’s-Her-Name were a couple a real no-talents!”?)

Robert Romanus as Mike Damone“No, not really. To be honest with you, everybody on that set was really a good actor. Dedicated. It was cast really well. People knew what they were doing even though they were young.”

When I asked if there was anything else in his long career he thought maybe hadn’t gotten the attention it deserved, the actor, who plays and sings with the L.A. area band Poppa’s Kitchen, used a pop musical metaphor.

“It’s like an album cut. Some of them are hits, some of them are just Side-Bs. You’ll never see ’em; you won’t listen to ’em. For me, once I’m done, it’s over. The process is the fun part.” As for what he’s up these days, “always looking for work” was Romanus’s commendably straightforward answer.

Next up was a brief cameo from the very attractive hostesses of Spike TV’s gamer geek friendly “GameTrailers,” Amanda McKay and Justine Ezarik. As we speak, the pair are gearing for the gigantic E3 gaming expo in downtown Los Angeles.

That was followed by my favorite encounter of the evening. It was with five of the seven actresses who so memorably and precisely portrayed Mickey Ward’s extremely memorable sisters from “The Fighter.” Though, like a fool I forgot to ask everyone their names, and I’m therefore not 100% sure which actress the quote below comes from, I can at least say that the women pictured belowed are (I think) Kate B. O’Brien (Conan O’Brien’s sister!), Melissa McMeekin, Bianca Hunter, Jenna Lamia (who I think did the talking, but don’t quote me on that), and Erica McDermott.

I started out by asking about the much discussed sequel, which they told me was, as far as they knew, just a rumor, but one in which they were very much in favor. (The main source of those “rumors” has been star and producer Mark Wahlberg, who seemed to confirm that it was done deal and a third and final sequel possible, while picking up Mantlers on stage in the presence of director David O. Russell, and real-life “fighters.”)

Since in person the acting “sisters” really do seem much, much less intimidating and a more than a little healthier than the Eklund/Ward sisters from the film, I asked if they ever get recognized. It had happened when they were together but they seemed to agree that not being recognized individually as one of the characters they played was something of a compliment. Since I really was impressed by the realism and intensity of their performances, I asked if there were any actor exercises to achieve the strong group dynamic on display in the Oscar-winning movie.

“We got to meet the actual women that we were playing. I’ve never done that before. We had drinks with them and hung out in their kitchen and talked about life; there’s nothing better than that.”

I mentioned I was especially impressed by their group dynamic in opposition to Charlene Fleming-Ward, as portrayed by Amy Adams.

“We bonded so quickly amongst us that we really did feel like we were sisters. Then we tried to somewhat keep our distance from Amy. She’s a lovely girl, but we did try and keep our distance a little bit so that that would show.”

Next up was possibly the most famous face in the tech geek community this side of Steve Jobs or Guy’s Choice nominee Mark Zuckerberg, Kevin Pereira, host of G4’s “Attack of the Show” since 2005. So, I asked him, what’s the biggest thing in geek culture these days?

“Anything that has a lowercase ‘i’ people get excited for. iPads, iPhones, iBongs, it doesn’t matter…The tablet space is going to heat up very soon. Honeycomb, from Google, it’s their portable operating system. That’s really improving greatly. Manufacturers are really hopping on board for that. And, the new previews for Windows 8 shows that it’s going to be an awesome, touch-enabled interface.”

From their, our conversation immediately went downhill intellectually as we somehow wound up discussing the tragedy of liberal Democratic congressman Anthony Weiner. At that point, he had yet to come clean in that now legendary press conference. At this point he had been reduced to lying that he could not be sure whether or not the genitalia in question belonged to him or someone else, though he was sure he hadn’t sent them.

“You should know what your own penis looks like from any angle,” Pereira opined. “I’m sorry. As a man, that’s the one thing you should be able to pick out of a line-up. ‘Is that my dick? I don’t know I see so many of them in my in-box.'”

From there it wasn’t too far a stretch to ask what was the most controversial topic topic among the G4 viewership. It turned out to be a more loaded question than I knew.

“We get a lot of hate mail every day from pretty much every group you can imagine. We’re a pretty sexist, racist, vile show, but we review technology — it’s okay, you can do that. We do get a lot letters every day about different games…whether it’s for the cell phone, the web browser or whatever, people just want to be entertained and ignore the real world.”

And with those wise words, it was time for things to begin winding down as the show itself got underway. Competitive eater Joey Chestnutt stopped by next to say some kind words to the troops via the American Forces Network, but I would have prefered to go with the picture I got of the lovely and talented Eva Mendes, who was chatting with Telemundo on the other side of me. The bad news is, none of my pictures of her came out very well. The good news was I had better luck getting a decent shot of newly minted  “Charlies’ Angels” TV-reboot costar Annie Ilonzeh.

Finally, there was the brief visit from “Reno 911” creators Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant, better known to the show’s viewers as Lieutenant Jim Dangle and Deputy Travis Junior. Since I was also located next to reporters from American Forces Network (formerly Armed Forces Network), they stopped by to give a shout out to the troops and promise to continue “being funny” in return for the bravery of our soldiers and for “finding folks in Pakistan that need killin’.'”

“It seems like they’re all there,” Lennon added, reacting to the laughs. “Just the last ten or so.”


And, as promised, here are a few of our favorite quotes from the evening.

“It’s no secret that comedy comes from pain. So I would be remiss if I were to accept this award without thanking my Uncle Basil, for raping me anally at a remote lake north of Sudbury, Ontario….”
— Jim Carrey

“Michelle Bachman told supporters that our founding fathers ended slavery. She’s the presidential candidate for voters who like Sarah Palin, but are intimidated by smart women.”
— Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog.

“There’s a PETA demonstration going on outside. I think they’re calling for a dog with a cigar to be put down.”
— Sean Penn

“I’ve got to call Clint Eastwood and ask him how he displays his balls.”
— Keith Richards, picking up the “Brass Balls” award


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