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He’s baaaacccckkk!!

Dexter and his dark passenger returned to the screen last Sunday night with the type of exciting season opener that fans expected to see kick-off Season 5, which happens to be the most boring season of what might be the best written show on television!

If you’ve never watched Dexter and plan to start, stop reading here. There will be no spoiler alerts for Season 6, but we'll give a quick recap of what’s happened for Dexter and Miami Metro since the ice truck killer swept thru Miami.Dexter photo: www.yoshicube64.blogspot.com

Dexter’s notoriously suspenseful writing left fans speechless and shocked when Season 4 wrapped up with Rita dead and Harrison on the floor in blood, so much that no one was sure how Season 5 would kick-off. And after 4 seasons of a series with such incredible acting and writing that it’s hard to pick a favorite, Season 5 was vanilla at best.

If the writers keep the momentum of Season 6 going the way they started things this week (with everyone thinking Dexter was stabbed within the first 30 seconds and then seeing the first of what will likely be man kills this season), then viewers can relax and know that the show that makes Sunday night a bit more bearable is back to its suspenseful, edge-of-the-seat entertainment, then there will be no more talk of tuning out for the duration.

After the show opened with possibly the best ever opening scene for the series, things seemed slight off base. The way Dexter introduced Angel’s sister, Jamie, (played by Aimee Garcia) a character who clearly has an interesting back story for the writers to unveil this season, seemed unnatural as Dexter almost spoke to the viewers telling them it’s not what they think. And that story line can only get more interesting as she will clearly see what type of hours the dark passenger keeps. He can’t blame everything on work with this nanny!

Where you surprised to think that Lieutenant LaGuerta was promoted because she’s having an affair with Captain Matthews? With her track record and recent divorce from Angel, nothing is shocking, but to see that it was blackmail made it more intriguing for the rest of the season!  Where will this go and who is it going to come back to bite? Remember Doakes!?? Uh huh!

Clearly viewers need to keep a willing suspension of disbelief throughout the series and it might be harder to digest in Season 6 as the writers seem to be focusing on religion and faith, a bit tough to swallow considering Dexter has no feelings, right? But as you watch the show it’s clear that despite his dark passenger, Dexter clearly has compassion for other people’s feelings and of course, he wants what’s best for Harrison.

Colin Hanks and Edward James Olmos have joined the cast in some dark rooted roles that are based on a religion that kills people in a way that we can only be left wondering what will happen as the season moves on…two kills in the future, probably!Edward James Olmos and Colin Hanks photo: www.buddytv.com

Sending Dexter to his high school reunion was the perfect balance of reminding viewers of his tragedy with Rita and how much of a hermit he can be, paired with his success and the fact that he’s clearly an appealing man to the ladies. The scenes with Trish, surely appealing to the male audiences, led Dexter to his true favorite activity, since he was able to get Joe in the end.

Masuka was up to his normal ways and the ensemble cast cheered him on as usual. Deb doesn’t seem the marrying type but if she does say yes to Quinn, one can only imagine what might circle back in his face from his investigation of Dexter last year. Unless the writers just drop it as they seemed to do with so many things in Season 6.

Overall Season 6, episode 1 was better than expected! It should be interesting to see how the show starts next week, and if Deb’s really hurt or the blood on her shirt was from someone else.

Dexter airs Sunday nights at 9pm on Showtime, and if you’re too busy watching Sunday Night Football to tune in, there is an encore presentation Monday nights at 9pm.

Dexter photo: www.yoshicube64.blogspot.com

Edward James Olmos and Colin Hanks photo: www.buddytv.com

How cool is this?!
When my dad called me this afternoon to tell me that Cliff Lee and Ryan Madson graced the cover of the regional Sports Illustrated  this week, you can’t help but have a sense of pride about our Phillies. The playoffs will not be easy, but hopefully this will be a fun ride for everybody involved!

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Give back and take a swing at the Front Row Foundation’s first annual golf outingGive back and take a swing at the Front Row Foundation’s first annual golf outing

CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa., Sept. 27, 2011— The Front Row Foundation is gearing up for its first annual charitable golf outing at Plymouth Country Club  in Plymouth Meeting on Monday, October 3, 2011.

The event, sponsored by Axis Construction Management, will benefit the Front Row Foundation whose mission is to help individuals and families who have life threatening illnesses to live their lives to the fullest by providing front row seats to various performances, concerts and sporting events.

Founder of Axis Construction Management and Front Row Sponsor William Bostic said, “We wanted to get involved because of the charity’s methods. The Front Row Foundation creates unique experiences (concerts, sporting events or other life goal experiences) that take the recipient’s mind off of what’s happening to them physically.  As a bonus, these experiences are shared with the recipient’s family and loved ones andthose memories live on even when, sadly, sometimes the recipients do not.”

The head of the foundation, Jon Vroman, is thankful that Axis came up with this generous opportunity to raise money and give back to hundreds of individuals and families.

“The Front Row Foundation has had the privilege of creating life-changing experiences for more than 40 extraordinary individuals during the past six years,” said Vroman. “The foundation helps those people and their families who are braving critical health challenges and provides them with the tools necessary to live life to the fullest through positive experiences.”

The event is not just a golf tournament, but it includes a lunch buffet before tee off, a cocktail hour, dinner, raffles and awards. A silent auction will culminate the night, which boasts many exciting items, including jewelry by Lagos, four tickets to a 2012 season Phillies game in the Diamond Club, a stay at a privately owned home in the Poconos, a stay at the W Hotel in Washington D.C. and more.

About The Front Row Foundation:

The Front Row Foundation is a registered 501 (C)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to encourage everyone to "experience life in the front row."  We do so by helping individuals and their families who have life threatening illnesses to live their lives to the fullest by providing front row seats to concerts, sporting events and live performances of our recipients' choice. Our goal is to create magical moments that positively affect the mind, body, and spirit of each person involved, including our sponsorsand event organizers.  www.FrontRowFoundation.org.

The 2011 Drive it First Tour, sponsored by Ford, has arrived to the Oxford Valley Mall. Ford Motor Company is pleased to welcome those interested to a special VIP drive of the 2012 Explorer and 2012 Edge with the new 2.0L EcoBoost Engine.

This is more than a test drive, it is a chance to experience Ford’s new technology. There are various activities that take place at the event. Participants can indulge in new features such as the EcoBoost Experience™, Technology Drive™, and Sync with MyFord Touch™. Each of these activities brings fun and excitement into the world of driving.

The Drive it First Tour will arrive in Langhorne on Friday, September 30 from 9am to 6pm at the Oxford Valley Mall (2300 East Lincoln Highway, Langhorne, PA 19047). Registration closes at 4:30pm. Space is limited so drivers should register at www.driveitfirsttour.com

Those who register online beforehand can take the survey onsite to get a free giveaway. Participants must have a valid driver’s license and be 18 years old to drive. There will be a family activity available for those with small children.

Jailed American hikers Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer have finally been freed by Iran officials as of this morning EST - following the posting of $1 million bail.

Thus ends the more than two year long saga in which the pair along with Sarah Shourd were imprisoned for espionage. Shourd was released a little over one year ago for humanitarian reasons when she was feared to have cancer. Her family was forced to cough up $500,000.

Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer will immediately fly to Oman, which helped broker the bail deal.

Make no mistake, the freeing of Bauer and Fattal is a merely PR stunt. Iranian President Mahmoud Amahdinejad is due to set foot in New York City tomorrow for a U.N. Summit.

Nonetheless, it's good to see the American hikers FINALLY return home - for propaganda reasons or not.

Contact The Peoples Blogger at peoplesblogger@yahoo.com

Let’s face it, we all have had that one night of insomnia in which we flip rigorously through the television channels finding some hope of relief of boredom at 3:00 a.m. when we stumble upon the Adult Swim  channel.  Underbelly receiving their award at the Philly Geek Awards.

You think to yourself, “It’s 3:00 in the morning, who is going to know I’m watching Anime?” which is, let’s face it, borderline cartoon porn at times. Yet, we get that guilty satisfaction in which we can’t stop watching whichever program is on.  

The scarier part? The fact that these shows used to be aired during daytime television for children. Prime example, Pokémon. I remember back in 6th grade the biggest “it” thing to do was to trade Pokémon cards and win infinite battles with ridiculously over priced cardboard cards that had certain powers and strengths.

Well, it’s been quite a few years since those days and I have the next “it” thing:


Underbelly is a YouTube sensation that has soared with fans and the recent recipient of the best web series award at the Philly Geek Awards.  The comical web series has over 20,000 followers and a worldwide viewership. Underbelly is a group of actors/comedians that in a nut shell analyze a variety of anime shows and mock them with their commentary over episodes, games, comic slides and at times own person skits. Underbelly is a YouTube sensation that has soared with fans and the recent recipient of the best web series award at the Philly Geek Awards.

I couldn’t find a skit that didn’t have me laughing out of my chair and completely agreeing with every factor they pointed out to poke fun of about each show ranging from the Pokémon obsession to the breast enhancing of the female anime characters over the years. My favorite has to be the Pokemonaholics series, which almost had me reaching for my inhaler gasping for air I was laughing so hard.

Now, don’t get me wrong, their skits are not always about Anime series, but comic books as well with the characters trying to get “George Lucas” rich as they re-create famous comic book heroes.  The actors are hysterical and extremely talented.  I couldn’t find a webisode I didn’t like.  

And for all you ladies out there who may not get that college guy who hasn’t matured hysterical humor yet, they have something to cater to you as well. ‘The Top Ten Sexual Pokémon’ had me wondering if I should be disturbed by how accurate the assumptions were or turned on, but none the less hysterical, and from a female point of view.

And if after all that you still can’t motivate yourself to show any interest in the gaming, comic, anime specter, Underbelly shows that it can cater to any audience and adapt to any “review” by having their own hilarious commentaries on popular movies.  Underbelly speaks what we all say whisper to one another during the scene while watching the events unfold at the theater, and overall just adds talent and most likely better one liners then what we would point out.


The next time you decide to log onto Facebook for the hundredth time that day, or have insomnia, or need to pass time while enduring having to sit at yet another one of your children’s sporting events, check out Underbelly's YouTube channel. 

Karen Stebbins is a writer, student, full-time employee, cheauffer, chef, educater,comedian, soccer mom, party girl (when she's not in bed by 9:00 p.m.) and a friend to all.  aspires to be a professional writer and maybe make it to the New York Times best seller one day! This is her first article for Philly2Philly. Welcome to the team, Karen!!

Contact Karen at karen12486@hotmail.com

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9/11 National Moment of Remembrance


Stop and Remember


9/11 Memorial Moment


The U.S. Senate has unanimously passed a resolution(S. Res. 237) calling on all Americans to participate in a Moment of Remembrance on September 11, 2011 at 1 pm. For one minute, first responders, houses of worship, towns, and others throughout the country will sound sirens and bells in a signal to each of us to STOP AND REMEMBER the 10th anniversary of the tragedies of September 11, 2001.



Lest you think this post-modern sculptural detail at left — one of many small treasures from the Blue Grotto — is merely a slapdash piece of whimsy made up of two found objects, allow me to explain its meaning as told to me directly by the artist, Randy Dalton.

There is a reason that it’s become a part of my show, BEAUTIFUL ZION: A BOOK OF THE DEAD. The Caged Unicorn was created about a decade ago to symbolize the extradition, conviction and life imprisonment of “the unicorn killer,”  CEC neighbor Ira Einhorn (his surname meaning literally one horn;  “the unicorn” was also Einhorn’s nickname).  

Einhorn was a pal of ’60s radicals Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin and involved with the first Earth Day celebrations in 1970.  He also counted rock star Peter Gabriel among his friends and was sometimes paid well by socialites for serving as their New Age guru. Ira went on to murder his girlfriend, a young ballerina and privileged graduate of Bryn Mawr College named Holly Maddux, in 1977. The cold-blooded killing happened around the corner from the CEC in Ira’s home at 3411 Race Street.

Ira was a fixture in West Philadelphia, a charismatic and eccentric celebrity, community activist and nearby UPenn graduate who was no stranger to the CEC staff of artists and activists, some of whom also knew and admired Holly. Despite Ira’s pose as a hippie and supporter of love and nonviolence, he was known locally to be a physically abusive womanizer. When Holly tried to break up with Ira he killed her, stuffed her body in a trunk and hid it in his closet.  18 months later in 1979 police found her body there and arrested Ira, who didn’t seem surprised but refused to admit guilt, instead shrugging it off and telling officers, “you found what you found.”

“The unicorn killer,” as the media dubbed him, had his bail reduced thanks to his clever defense lawyer, future US Senator Arlen Specter.  One of Ira’s wealthy friends paid the bail and he promptly fled to Europe before the murder trial began, perhaps also with the help of wealthy friends.

Ira was tried and convicted while living the good life in Europe under an assumed name and with a new Swedish wife. 16 years later in the early 1990s he was finally found in France and arrested. However France, which has  no death penalty, refused to extradite him to Pennsylvania, a frying state, as part of its international human rights policy.  

With some legal hoop-jumping, prosecutors in Pennsylvania were able to guarantee the French government that if found guilty Einhorn would not be executed.  In the end he was tried in absentia, found guilty and sentenced to life without parole. Still, France delayed 8 more years before finally extraditing him, only after feeling certain he would get a fair retrial.  Einhorn was given a new trial, again found guilty, and finally began serving his life sentence in Pennsylvania 2002.

Coincidentally, around the same time Holly  went missing in the late 1970s someone donated two holly trees to the CEC which Randy Dalton planted on the grounds. They were a  male and female tree (both are required in order to produce berries).  The staff named the female holly tree Holly in honor of the missing Holly Maddux, making it a living vigil on public display in a show of local support for the victim.  

When Einhorn was arrested  they celebrated, ceremonially wrapping the male tree loosely in barbed wire, symbolically “imprisoning” Einhorn.  By the time of Einhorn’s extradition in 2001 the male tree had caught a disease and died, and a joyful ceremony was held to uproot the tree and discard it. “Holly” has continued to thrive on the CEC grounds to this day (pictured at right).

Holly MadduxAn old photo of Holly Maddux also hangs on the wall of the Blue Grotto near the Caged Unicorn. Today there is also a memorial Myspace page in honor of Holly.  Ira’s grisly act was covered in detail in the New York Times  and Time magazine  and was covered in depth on TruTV.  (Another website provides gruesome crime scene photos of Holly’s decaying corpse in Ira’s trunk, to which I won’t bother providing a link.)

Although neither the CEC nor its staff were directly involved with the case, their physical, social and emotional proximity to the events left its mark on their psyches and even crept into the Blue Grotto, which is perhaps blue for more than one reason.

The more I get to know the joint the more it seems an appropriate match for the darkness and light traversed in BEAUTIFUL ZION: A BOOK OF THE DEAD.  Tickets are available here. The show closes 9/17/11.
- Jeffrey Stanley, East Passyunk, South Philly

Jeffrey Stanley is an award-winning playwright, screenwriter, filmmaker and recent transplant to Philadelphia from New York City.  He is a faculty member at New York University Tisch School of the Arts and will be teaching two theatre courses at Drexel University this fall.  His solo show Beautiful Zion: A Book of the Dead is currently running in the Philly Fringe at the Blue Grotto in the cellar of the CEC in West Philly. For tickets and more info please see http://www.brain-on-fire.com/beautifulzion .

Watch Margaret Dunning from Michigan drive her 1930 Packard. She is 101 years old!!  Great story.

Courtesy of the New York Times.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Philadelphia Eagles have signed Michael Vick to a six-year $100 million contract. Furthermore, the Eagles are going to give Vick $40 million guaranteed.

michael vick eagles redskins

One of the Eagles' top priorities this offseason was to re-up Vick and this will pretty much guarantee he finishes his career in Philadelphia.

Last season Vick was an MVP candidate as he revitalized his career. He racked up 3018 passing yards, with 21 touchdowns and just 6 interceptions to go along with 676 rushing yards and 9 touchdowns.

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