Sunday Suggestions: 06/28/2020

It’s that time of the week again. Welcome to another installment of Sunday Suggestions! This week, we’ll be covering the following suggestions:

Movie: Willow
Internet Show: Critical Role
Play/Script: Lonely Planet
Homemade Recipe: Pizza Sloppy Joes

Starring Warwick Davis, Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley, Jean Marsh, Patricia Hayes, Pat Roach, Gavan O’Herlihy
Rated PG
Released in 1988
Found on Disney+

Willow was one of the first movies I saw as a child that delved into the realm of fantasy. My love of fantasy movies, books, and games all started with Willow. The movie was released the year I was born, so I didn’t see it until I was around five or six years old. This is one of my earliest memories; seeing Willow on VHS. Everything about the movie stands out to me as one of my best childhood memories and the catalyst for my nerdy status. The movie follows a young man named Willow played by Warwick Davis. Willow is a little person, named Nelwyns in the movie, and he is a simple farmer that lives with his wife and two children. They happen across a small baby named Elora, who we learned in the prologue is a child destined to become royalty and defeat the evil queen, Bavmorda. Willow takes it upon himself to escort Elora to a place called Tir Aisleen, but he comes across many obstacles for a man of his size. He is tasked with finding an old sorceress named Raziel, befriends a man named Madmartigan, and finds himself pushed to the brink of his own physical and mental capabilities. It’s a charming movie directed by Ron Howard and produced by George Lucas. If you haven’t seen Willow and are willing to overlook the cheesy 80’s graphics, give this fantastic fantasy movie a few hours of your time.

Internet Show
Critical Role
Starring Matthew Mercer, Marisha Ray, Travis Willingham, Laura Bailey, Liam O’Brien, Taliesin Jaffe, Sam Riegel, Ashley Johnson
Began in 2015
Found LIVE on and recordings on YouTube

Oh, Critical Role. I can’t think of any other way to start describing this show other than that. Critical Role holds a very special place in my heart because of everything the show represents. At its core, Critical Role is a boring concept. Nobody hates anything more than sitting on the sideline and watching somebody else play a game. While Twitch has become a very prominent figure in today’s entertainment, watching another play a game can still be a tedious task. Critical Role is a bunch of voice actors sitting at a table playing Dungeons and Dragons for 3-5 hours per episode. It’s a show where some friends sit at a table and play out a roleplaying game in front of a few cameras. To the average person, the show is incredibly boring. To those unfamiliar with Dungeons and Dragons, the show is incredibly boring. But to a lover of tabletop roleplaying games, a hobbyist in voice acting, and a fan of all things nerdy, this show is a masterpiece in acting and roleplaying games. Critical Role’s opening line is always, “Welcome to tonight’s episode of Critical Role, where a bunch of us nerdy ass voice actors sit around and play Dungeons and Dragons.” Somewhere in between the nerdy voice actors and the watching other people play a game rests a sleeping giant of love, art, care, empathy, and everlasting joy. The unscripted show that these actors put forth every week contains more love than most scripted shows and movies. Through the hundreds of hours of tabletop roleplaying, I have found a joy that can only be described as unforgettable. Go give them a watch when you have time. I promise you won’t regret it.

Lonely Planet
Written by Steven Dietz
Originally performed in 1993
Published by Dramatists Play Service, Inc.

Lonely Planet is one of my all-time favorite plays. I first read and performed the play when I was in high school Forensics. At fifteen years old, I had a hard time grasping the true meanings of the play. The play follows two characters named Carl and Jody. Jody owns and runs a cartography store. He is a bit of a recluse and is most likely HIV positive, and this is something that has taken an emotional and physical toll on his overall lifestyle. Carl is more of a freewheeling soul that brings chairs of their friends that have passed and leaves them in Jody’s store. Carl continues trying to convince Jody to leave the store and become tested for HIV, but Jody continues to be shutoff from the rest of the world and refuses to get tested. Eventually, Carl convinces Jody to go get tested, but upon Jody’s return to the store, he finds Carl sitting in a chair…it’s Carl’s chair. Lonely Planet is a heartbreaking look at the AIDS epidemic that swept through America in the 80’s and 90’s while providing relatable characters in a realistic and scary way. It’s one of the few scripts I’ve read dozens of times, and I always go back to it when I need a boost to my emotional mindset.

Buy Lonely Planet

Homemade Recipe
Pizza Sloppy Joes

1lb ground beef
6 slices of bacon
2tbsp butter
1 small yellow onion (diced)
1 red bell pepper (diced)
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
1 cup marinara sauce
1tbsp cornstarch
½ cup beef broth
½ small package of pepperoni
6oz chopped mozzarella cheese
1/2tbsp sugar

Brown ground beef in skillet, cooking until about 50% of the beef has a dark brown crust on it
Remove the beef and drain
Add bacon, butter, onions, pepperoni, and bell peppers to the pan
Let brown for 1-2 minutes, stir, another 1-2 minutes, stir again
Add the beef back to the pan
In a separate bowl/cup, mix salt, pepper, sugar, marinara sauce, beef broth, and cornstarch together. 
Add that mix to the pan. 
Cook until mixture is slightly liquid-y, about 3-5 minutes
Turn off heat, add mozzarella and fold it into the meat mixture until just melted

Serve and enjoy!

Until next Sunday!

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