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Review: Method & Red Episode 4 – One Tree Hill

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Original Air Date: July 7, 2004

I will say that I have been putting off continuing my series of Method & Red episode reviews, but I will also point out that I still planned to finish them. I took the month of October off to do other pieces on other things and now we are more than halfway through November, it is time to continue this. I will also point out that I have plans for December as I will do a review on the Christmas on Death Row album, along with High Fo’ Xmas from West Coast Bad Boyz, which is a No Limit album. At the moment, I can’t think of other things that are Christmas-related that I might do, but I will do those for sure.

Now onto the review of this episode.

The first thing that I must point out is that yes, this episode is entitled One Tree Hill, and it shared the name of a relatively popular drama series that was on around the time this episode aired. I wonder if the people at the WB got on the people at Fox for the use of the name. Anyway, this episode’s plot has to do with Red and Meth becoming presidents of the Neighborhood Homeowner’s Association and then they get mad with power that they forget about other things. The episode’s title is derived from the fact that Meth’s mother, Dorothea, has a tree in their yard that she had been planting for years and it meant a lot to her.

Regarding the episode’s quality, while it was still a bit over the top in some areas, it actually conveyed a decent message in the end. The one thing that it really did not need is to repeat a gag twice, however. It got a chuckle out of me the first time, but when it was done the second time it wasn’t as funny. It also felt different than the previous episodes considering how Meth and Red were a lot more antagonistic to Nancy in this episode as they had more of the upper hand on her than before. I get that despite the two being presented as protagonists that they aren’t exactly “good guys,” but in this episode they looked more like assholes than before. However, it might be the point as the two got mad with power and things got worse for them later.

Until I watched this episode I had forgotten about this one. I mostly remember when Nancy told Method Man and Redman about what led to their inevitable fall from grace at the end of the episode. I can’t complain too much about the writing as it was a little different than what had been seen so far. I just didn’t like how Red and Meth were portrayed for the most part in the episode, but like I also said, it conveyed an average message about how power can get the better of someone and that they tend to forget about other things that are more important. It might be least favorite episode yet, but I didn’t hate it as I was still entertained.

Next up, Episode 5. Stay tuned.

Preview and editorial: Method and Red TV series

Review: Method & Red Episode 1 – Pilot

Review: Method & Red Episode 2 – The Article

Review: Method & Red Episode 3 – Well Well Well

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Review: Method & Red Episode 3 – Well Well Well

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Original Air Date: June 30, 2004

Hello, readers. Before I get into this episode review, I have to make an announcement. It’s now October and for a while I had planned on doing reviews of some movie soundtracks to horror films such as Bones and Tales From The Hood, as well as maybe some horrorcore rap albums, like from the Gravediggaz or Flatlinerz. I don’t really have a lot of those, so I will make do with what I have. I also want to do a review of the movie, Bones, the one with Snoop Dogg, but I just need to get my hands on it first. Some other ones like Hood of Horror may have to wait. However, this ALSO means that I may have to put my reviews of Method & Red episodes on hold for a bit, or at least do a few at a time. I am not breaking my promise about doing the whole series. I just won’t do it as consistently as I initially planned.

Anyway, onto the review.

This episode was about Method Man’s mom’s 25th anniversary at her job and Meth wants to hold a bigger party than what she got at her place of work, a toll booth. Meth and Red want to get Chaka Khan to sing at the party, which Red promised to do. However, Meth deals with problems of his own and that is Nancy blasting Kenny Loggins’s music in her home. The reason? Because Meth has a grudge against him (More on that later). While trying to set up the party, Method Man and Redman suck up all the power in the neighborhood, as a way to stick it to Nancy. However, Red couldn’t get Chaka Khan to perform, and Nancy managed to suck the power from Method Man and Redman after talking to the electric company. So what is the next thing to do? In order to please Nancy as well, Method Man had to go settle his differences with Kenny Loggins so that he can perform.

This was another episode that stood out to me. I remember it because somehow they got Kenny Loggins and Chaka Khan to appear in this episode, and also the flashback sequences. I crack up at Redman’s afro wig, same with the flashback sequence that explained why Meth has an issue with Loggins: He used to be Kenny’s assistant and he used to push him around, which Meth hated. I also liked how Loggins addressed Method Man by his real name, Clifford Smith. Plus, Beth Littleford did well when Nancy was excited to see Loggins perform at the party. So I actually thought that this was one of the better episodes of the show so far.

Overall, this episode was actually decent and a little less goofy than the previous episode. I still believe that The Article was more over the top because of the birthday party sequence, especially with the appearance of Downtown Clowny Brown and the Super Squad 4. I don’t know when I will do the next episode because of my plans for this month. Until then, thanks for reading.

Preview and editorial: Method and Red TV series

Review: Method & Red Episode 1 – Pilot

Review: Method & Red Episode 2 – The Article

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Review: Method & Red Episode 2 – The Article

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Original Air Date: June 24, 2004

It has been a bit since I have last updated this, but I promised myself to continue my series of Method & Red episode reviews.

As I had noted in my preview post, the episode that I am about to cover is the top one that I remember over all the others. Although I have some recollection over some others, this one reigns supreme over everything else. Let’s cut right to the chase now.

The episode’s plot in a nutshell is that Method Man and Redman are about to have a meeting with a journalist to see if they are still considered “hood,” while Skyler has a birthday coming up with the Super Squad 4, a parody of Power Rangers, entertaining and wants to the two men to appear. However, the reporter is meeting with them on the same day as the party and the two rappers want to maintain their street image because the reporter had written a piece on 50 Cent and how he lived with his mom.

Of course, Method and Red fake being sick so that they can retain their reputation and not have to appear, only for Skyler to go by and see that they weren’t sick. It’s not that new of plot point as I had seen that in many different sitcoms before.

In fact a lot of elements in this episode are not that new, like the bit with Meth’s mom posing as the maid so keep up his reputation in the journalist’s presence. But what made this episode memorable for me is the finale. It was inevitable that Method and Red would appear at the birthday party, but what cracked me up is how they got into it with the Super Squad 4, who decided to fight the two which resulted in a riot at the party. No, it was not that kind of riot. It made the party more interesting for the guests. Did I mention how there was character named Downtown Clowny Brown in this episode? Well, there was, but he had only made a couple of appearances, one of which was a flashback to show who he was, but by the time he had appeared, he was almost forgotten about. It was sort of funny to see a clown from the hood, though.

One of my primary complaints about the episode was that Method Man and Redman continued to address the journalist by his full name, Keith Debeetham. On the other hand, his last name was like nothing I have ever heard before, so I give that a pass. Plus it’s rather fun to say especially with the addition of his first name.

This episode is still rather funny in some areas in a rather cheesy way. The finale is the funniest sequence by far in this episode. So this remains to be one of my favorite episodes of the entire series as a whole.

I will try to get to the third episode soon. Peace!

Preview and editorial: Method and Red TV series

Review: Method & Red Episode 1 – Pilot

Review: Method & Red Episode 3 – Well Well Well

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Review: Method & Red Episode 1 – Pilot

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Original Air Date: June 16, 2004

As I had stated on my preview piece on this show, which was also a bit of an editorial, I had planned on reviewing episodes of this sitcom. I was lucky to see that I was able to find some episodes online because no DVD exists for this. I don’t need to get into anything about the show because I had already covered that in my preview story. Let’s just get to the episode now.

So the episode starts off with Nancy, the realtor and antagonist of the show, showing a family about a house she is trying to sell. The family is all ready and willing to buy the house, until a lot of cars pull up to a house in the neighborhood for a party, and who would happen to host that party? Why Method Man and Redman, of course! It was enough to drive the family away and Nancy out of a sale.

The whole plot of the episode is that Nancy wants them evicted, and when Method Man and Redman catch wind of that, they want to be accepted in the neighborhood by catering to fellow neighbors. Some of the things that I had noticed is that it plays the cliche stereotype that because they live in a predominantly white neighborhood, they intimidate the neighbors despite them trying to get on their good graces. However, they do reach out to a few who are willing to give them a chance. Redman meets a rather odd individual who needed help with “getting his dad out of the bathtub,” while Meth reaches out to Bill and Skyler, Nancy’s husband and son, respectively. Unlike Nancy, Bill and Skyler take to Meth a lot better and are a lot more accepting of he and Redman living in the neighborhood, especially with Skyler being a fan of the two rappers.

Although I pointed out how the laugh track was an awkward to the show, I have noticed how goofy this show was in hindsight. I mean it’s no different than their movie, “How High,” in terms of tone, although it is less vulgar than that movie. I chuckled here and there with the over-the-top elements of how rich people live, with a TV monitor in various parts of the house like in a refrigerator and in a kitchen drawer.

However, some of the stereotypical humor was a bit much, like how some white people initially thought that Method Man was going to assault them when he wanted to deliver a fruitcake in order to reach out to them. I am not sure if it was a jab at class issues or racial issues, because in one scene Meth tried reaching out to black people in the neighborhood. Aside from that, I just thought it could be much worse.

Looking back on this episode, it really wasn’t terrible. Some parts got a chuckle out of me and I have seen more unfunny stuff than this. Was it good? No, but it certainly was not bad, either.

Stay tuned for my piece on episode 2, which I will do soon.

Preview and editorial: Method and Red TV series

Review: Method & Red Episode 2 – The Article

Review: Method & Red Episode 3 – Well Well Well

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Preview and editorial: Method and Red TV series

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Hello readers, I had thought about doing a piece or two on the short-lived sitcom called “Method & Red.” However, I was torn between doing a review of the series as a whole or doing separate pieces on the individual episodes. I also plan to do a review on the movie, “How High” in the future, but at the moment I want to talk about the TV show, which also starred Method Man and Redman.

Looking back on this show, I recall that it was a vehicle for Method Man and Redman to become promising TV stars and if I recall, Meth was actually one of the show’s producers. The two rappers played fictionalized versions of themselves on this show and they lived in a New Jersey suburb. They lived next door to the show’s antagonist, Nancy Blaford, played by Beth Littleford, a realtor who had it in for the duo, though her husband and son didn’t seem to mind them, if like them. Well, I recall that the son thought they were cool, enough that in one episode he wanted them to appear at his birthday to help improve it over some Power Ranger-esque entertainers. That actually was one of the few episodes that I remember, along with an episode that had Kenny Loggins appear.

If I remember correctly, one of the show’s primary problems was the laugh-track. During the year which this show aired, 2004, Fox had other sitcoms that were shot on-location and did not use laugh-tracks. The primary examples of this were “Malcolm in the Middle” and “Arrested Development,” both of which were relatively well-received by critics and fans alike. “Method and Red” was shot on-location, but it had awkward moments in which a joke was told and you heard a laugh-track right after that. According to a lot of sources, Method Man was not fond of the show’s direction and editing. He wanted it to be like the aforementioned shows.

According to an article from the Village Voice, “Method & Red” was never technically cancelled, as it was put on extended hiatus to be retooled. Meth made it public about his disdain about the show’s direction. Of course, it had never come back, which made the show dead in the water, not to mention that Method Man and Redman went back to their respective careers.

Now that I think about it, the show came on the same year that Method Man had released “Tical 0: The Prequel,” a critical disappointment (I wasn’t too fond of that album either, except for a few songs). I wondered if his other career choices were the reason that his third album was not that great. I must add that Meth had also appeared in the movie, “Soul Plane,” which also came out the same year that this show did. Also, Redman had faced another push-back in his “Red Gone Wild” album, which was supposed to be released around that time, but was still pushed back until 2007.

Apart from the laugh track, I remember being entertained by this show in spite of its problems. It has been quite a long time since I have seen the episodes, which is why I wanted to review the episodes. There were 13 episodes overall, nine of which actually aired. I wonder if there will be a way to watch the other four one day, though I doubt it. I even have my doubts that there is even a demand for a DVD release that will include the unaired four episodes. If there was, I wonder Method Man and Redman would provide commentary and/or different versions of the episodes without the stupid laugh track. The episodes are also on YouTube, so I will critique all nine of them eventually. Will I think that they hold up? Probably not, but that is all the more reason for me to write about this short-lived TV show. At least “Eve” lasted two or three seasons, which is another TV sitcom that featured a rapper. I still wonder if Fox had planned on airing the other four episodes, as Wikipedia showed the dates that they were supposed to air. It was probably around the time that Meth had talked about the problems that the network decided not to do it. Nobody except Fox and Method Man really know about this.

Review: Method & Red Episode 1 – Pilot

Review: Method & Red Episode 2 – The Article

Review: Method & Red Episode 3 – Well Well Well

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