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Issue of 5/12/2010

Cover Story:

The Fash Bash!
by Travis R. Wright
Designers, stylists and models duke it out for fashion supremacy


From Marvel to Revelation by Corey Hall
Keeping up with the sprawling cast of Iron Man

Idol, American-style by Khary Kimani Turner
Sista Otis, Detroit's traveling musical nomad, gets major kudos in America's biggest pop arena

Learn or get burned by Curt Guyette
Detroit City Council and the incinerator


Treats and Trick by Brian Smith (Backwash)
Back-catalogue gems from Curtis Mayfield and Cheap Trick

Food Stuff by Metro Times food staff (Food Stuff)
National Barbecue Month fires up, and more ...

Trumped up by Jim McFarlin (Idiot Boxing)
Bret Michaels, should he stay or go? And Mary McCormack has very lovely mouth.

Letters to the Editor by Metro Times readers (Letters to the Editor)
Teabaggers, Jack Kerouac and more

Metro Retro by Metro Times staff (Metro Retro)
Looking back on 30 years of MT

Motor City Cribs by Doug Coombe (Motor City Cribs and Rides)
Evan Perri of Hot Club of Detroit shows off his Grosse Pointe Park apartment

Ballot boxing by News Hits staff (News Hits)
When it comes to the mayoral election dustup, Tom Barrow has a point

Night and Day by Megan O'Neil (Night and Day)

Ernie's real legacy by Jack Lessenberry (Politics and Prejudices)
If only our leaders were as good at bringing us all together

Coming clean by Dan Savage (Savage Love)
Why you two gay guys should probably admit you're bi to that girlfriend you want to team up on

A war of words by Larry Gabriel (Stir It Up)
Ron Scott said the wrong thing, but don't get him wrong

Music for smart people by D'Anne and Laura Witkowski (Wonder Twins)
The Wonder Twins groove — and breathe! — with Modernlull at the Berkley Front



I Learned the Hard Way - Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings Reviewed by Travis R. Wright (Record)

Good for the Bones - Ken's Loud Band Reviewed by Bill Holdship (Record)


Babies Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
Presented like an old-school nature flick, the film bounces between the grasslands of Namibia, the high-rises of Tokyo, the steppes of Mongolia, and the gentrified neighborhoods of San Francisco without narration, analysis or interview, letting his HD images tease out the similarities and differences of first- and third-world tots. There’s African Ponijao, who seems to live in a world without men. Raised by an extended matriarchy, the bold little tyke is a quick study, alert to the world and eager to develop. Bayarjargal, on the other hand, steals the spotlight while suffering countless indignities in his rural Mongolian home. The child of herders, he’s harassed by a rooster, prodded by a curious older brother, and in constant competition with all manner of farm animals. Pay careful attention as helicopter parents in the audience wince and gasp at the long list of domestic health code violations these two babes thrive under.

Exit Through the Gift Shop Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
Thierry Guetta is a vintage clothing store owner in L.A. who obsessively chronicles his life on handheld video. Or so we’re told. Shooting his graffiti artist cousin Invader (who creates Space Invader-themed mosaics), the portly little Frenchman is introduced to a string of guerrilla artists and stencilers before befriending Shepard Fairey (of Obama poster fame) and, eventually, Banksy. He’s granted full access to these night-time subversives under the pretense that he’s putting together a documentary. But this is revealed to be a lie. Guetta has no talent or vision, just an endless archive he is unable to assemble into a coherent film. Eventually Banksy decides to take control of the footage and turn it into a watchable chronicle of his artistic subculture. Guetta, on the other hand, resolves to make some street art of his own, dubbing himself Mr. Brainwash. The artist becomes a filmmaker and the filmmaker becomes an artist. The only problem with this is that Guetta has no skill, gift or insight. His creations are dreck, sub-Warholian imitations and fifth generation rip-offs of other street artists. Worse, Guetta hires others to create his pieces for him. But the Frenchman does have a knack for shameless self-promotion, and ends up turning Mr. Brainwash into an art-celeb.

The Sheik: Wrestling’s Greatest Villain Reviewed by Corey Hall (Movie)
The Lansing-born son of Lebanese immigrants, Edward Farhat crafted the in-the-ring persona of an aristocratic Syrian Sheik, complete with a prayer rug, curved boots and a vicious rule-breaking brand of sadism that drove the fans wild … with anger. A rude brawler, The Sheik preferred hitting opponents with chairs, blinding them with flashes of fire or jabbing them in the forehead with tapped up pencils, until they gushed blood. He took on all comers, but his signature feud was with eternal foe Bobo Brazil, an African-American grappler as beloved as the Sheik was despised, and their battles for the U.S. Championship belt were always huge draws. This documentary was made by super-fan Mark Nowotarski, who includes rare stills and videos he shot himself, alongside ample archive material. While Farhat’s talent and accomplishments are certainly worth touting, some of the superlatives heaped on him are borderline embarrassing.

Iron Man 2 Reviewed by Jeff Meyers (Movie)
The first Iron Man was memorable and fun, a movie that surprised critics, audiences and studios with its energy and wit. Iron Man 2, in contrast, evaporates as soon as your expectations for clanking fisticuffs, wry asides and ear-splitting explosions are met. Despite its shortcomings, however, Iron Man 2 remains a cheeky blast of confidence and charisma. Robert Downey, Sam Rockwell and Mickey Rourke are clearly having a ball, and Favreau keeps things fleet-footed and fun. While there isn’t nearly as much combat as you’d expect — most of it is quick and chaotic — there’s enough to keep the fanboys happy. It’s also interesting (and heartening) to note that the sequel once again indicts the military-industrial complex as a vehicle for unfettered avarice and greed rather than peace and protection. Unfortunately, it never develops those ideas or arguments into anything more than cartoon villainy.


Pinwheel Bakery Reviewed by Todd Abrams (Restaurant)
In contrast to the bakeries with long display cases of cakes, tarts and pastries that are sometimes just shallow concoctions of sugar more pleasing to the eye than the palate, Pinwheel focuses on mostly simple, made-from-scratch delights. There are a variety of bite-sized cookies sold by the pound and boxed with a ribbon. These are fun, sweet and savory combinations much bigger in taste than size. Choose from cardamom-walnut rounds, cappuccino coins and vanilla-bean buttons edged with sparkly pink sugar. Shortbread comes in orange-cranberry, lavender and rosemary, or try the powdered sugar coated Chai-almond and Mexican tea cakes among the many options. If you’re in the mood for something more substantial, panini sandwiches on ciabatta bread are made fresh daily and grilled to order. Wash everything down with an espresso or their unique, crowd-favorite New Mexican piñon coffee. Milk, juices and quality fruit juice sodas, including Izze and San Pelligrino, are available from the cooler. Open 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; closed Sundays and Mondays.