World’s Strangest

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The Late Movies: Oscar Monologues

Yesterday, it was announced that Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane will host this year’s Academy Awards. The Oscars have a storied history of hosts, ranging from the iconic Johnny Carson to Bob Hope to David Letterman. The opening monologue is a critical moment in each host’s stint — the first glimpse into whether the evening [...]

11 Pop Culture References That Might Confuse Kids Today

If someone is described as meaner than Simon Cowell or a bigger lush than Snooki, you probably understand the reference. But will anyone get those same jokes in 30 years? Take a look at some common pop culture references from years gone by: 1. Mutt and Jeff Mutt and Jeff were two comic strip characters created [...]

11 Great Television Shows That Are Lost Forever

Much early television was broadcast live and never recorded. This included news and variety shows, of course, but also early dramas and comedy series. Even recorded shows have not been safe. Film recordings were disposed of, to clear storage space or make way for new equipment. Video—useful, but expensive—was frequently erased and re-used. Nobody back [...]

11 Signs, Announcements, and Disclaimers That Are No Longer Necessary

1. “The Captain has turned off the ‘No Smoking’ sign.” This announcement was heard less frequently beginning in 1988, when smoking was banned on all domestic flights of two hours or less. Ten years later smoking was verboten on all domestic flights, and by 2000 smoking on any U.S. airline was banned by federal law. [...]

The Wet and Wild History of the Super Soaker

For generations, kids spent their summers chasing each other around the backyard with simple water pistols that barely shot more than a few feet. But squirt guns got a major upgrade in the 1990s when the Super Soaker was introduced by Larami Toys. For over 20 years, these high-powered water guns have dominated [...]

5 Things You Didn’t Know About John DeLorean

© Roger Ressmeyer/CORBIS For anyone under 30, the name “DeLorean” conjures images of the time machine from Back to the Future. The famous car bore the surname of John DeLorean, a 1960s Detroit legend who later became something of an auto industry goat. Let’s take a look at five things you may not know about the [...]

The Late Movies: Late Night Hosts on Late Night Shows That Aren’t Their Own

In need of content during the 2007-2008 Writer’s Guild of America strike, comedians Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and Conan O’Brien created an elaborate faux feud to attract viewers, which culminated in a mock battle between the three hosts on the set of Late Night with Conan O’Brien. Though perhaps the most elaborate, this was far [...]

Toilet Paper: How America Convinced the World to Wipe

Since the dawn of time, people have found nifty ways to clean up after the bathroom act. The most common solution was simply to grab what was at hand: coconuts, shells, snow, moss, hay, leaves, grass, corncobs, sheep’s wool—and, later, thanks to the printing press—newspapers, magazines, and pages of books. The ancient Greeks used clay and stone. The Romans, sponges and salt water. [...]

The Late Movies: Steve Martin

Last week, Steve Martin graced the set of The Colbert Report to talk about his latest book, An Object of Beauty, a novel about the NYC art scene. For Martin, an amateur art collector himself, this is the latest chapter in an incredibly diverse and influential career. Tonight for The Late Movies, here are some [...]

The Quick 10: 10 More Celebrity Veterans

A couple of years ago on Veterans Day, we listed 10 celebrities who stopped what they were doing in the middle of a successful showbiz career to serve their country. We had a lot of mentions of other celebrities who also served before they were famous, and we thought today would be a good day [...]