Pop culture from Southern California and beyond.

The Muppets take Los Angeles in new movie

Premiere Of Walt Disney Pictures' "The Muppets" - Arrivals

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"The Muppets" arrive at the premier of their film at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood.

The Muppets have already taken Manhattan, so why not take Hollywood?

With Amy Adams and Jason Segel leading the human charge in the film, the newest Muppet movie looks to be as sing-songy and feel-good as ever, with a few emotional moments scattered in.

In "The Muppets," Kermit, Miss Piggy, Beaker, Fozzie Bear and the rest are reuniting in Hollywood when they decide to make a comeback by putting on a live extravaganza. Self-references abound as the Muppets, in reality, make their first appearance in a movie since "The Muppets' Wizard of Oz" in 2005.

In the new film, the singing puppets must overcome their hasbeen status to put on the Greatest Muppet Telethon Ever. A cutthroat executive (Rashida Jones) tells an office full of excited Muppets, "I'm gonna shoot straight, you guys aren't famous anymore."


Google+ goes corporate, launching branded pages - including the Muppets

Yesterday, Google+ rolled out branded pages. Essentially, they're like Facebook Pages, but, you know, on Google+.

Google had resisted rolling these out until they were ready. When companies tried jumping the gun and setting up pages using regular Google+ accounts months ago, Google+ began shutting those accounts down.

Well, Christmas is here for all those businesses that wanted to be on Google+ before.

It's hard to say how successful these will be. Google+ has struggled in its early going, quickly gaining a lot of followers but leaving many scratching their heads about why they'd want to be part of Google+ rather than doing similar things somewhere else, particularly on Facebook.

However, there are some compelling possibilities. The coolest thing I've seen since the launch: A Hangout with the Muppets. For those of you who haven't used Google+ yet, Hangouts are Google+ video chats that manage to rather seamlessly allow groups to chat. Now, the Muppets hangout was fairly structured, but it was the latest in a series of bold attempts by the Muppets to utilize digital media to promote themselves, such as spoof trailers for their movie and other random online videos.


'Green Lantern' media blitz: Onion parody, Muppets movie trailer, NASA finds Green Lantern planet and more

"Green Lantern" is permeating pop culture as the Ryan Reynolds movie based on the DC Comics character comes out. Here are a few of my favorite pieces of "Green Lantern" ephemera.

Green Lantern isn't as well known as your Supermans, your Batmans, your Spider-Mans. That might not be true anymore, particularly if "Green Lantern" turns out to be a hit, but The Onion captured the lack of awareness perfectly.

'Green Lantern' To Fulfill America's Wish To See Lantern-Based Characters On Big Screen

If you want some more Green Lantern comedy from the Onion, you can also check out this 2002 article on the character: "When You Are Ready To Have A Serious Conversation About Green Lantern, You Have My E-Mail Address." In a bit of corporate synergy, Mad Magazine, published by the same corporation behind Green Lantern, has a new issue with a cover story spoofing Green Lantern.