Swiftpicks 10 Things Not To Miss From A & E Editor Tim Swift

July 12, 2009|By Tim Swift

FILM

'Harry Potter:

and the Half-Blood Prince':

Yes, this is one where we learn all of Voldemort's dirty little secrets. But the real reason to catch the sixth entry in the Potter series may be to see how the young stars handle all the raging hormones at Hogwarts. Harry has his eye on a new girl, and his best mate Ron is caught in the middle of a messy love triangle. In theaters Wednesday.

TV

'Spongebob Squarepants' :

To celebrate the squishy yellow guy's 10th birthday, Nickelodeon is rolling out a 50-hour marathon of his greatest shows. And how is that different than any other day on Nickelodeon, you say? Well, Spongebob is on a lot, but this time at least he does deserves the extra attention. The marathon, including appearances by celebs picking their favorite shows, begins Friday.

CONVENTION

Otakon:

Don't be alarmed. Nerds dressed like meek schoolgirls, deadly ninja schoolgirls and possibly even Godzilla schoolgirls will be out in force around the Convention Center this weekend. They'll be attending the annual gathering of fans of Japanese pop culture. In addition to all the comics and collectibles, there will be plenty of live music and even a dance party.

Web : otakon.com

BOOKS

'The Accidental Billionaires':

by Ben Mezrich:

: Everyone knows that Facebook is an Internet juggernaut, but many might not be aware of the social-networking site's seedy and sexy back story. Mezrich, a Baltimore native, tells the story of how a plan to meet college girls became a global success. The book's not even out yet, and there's already talk of a movie version. In stores Tuesday.

DVD

'Mad Men: Season Two':

This highly addictive drama about '60s ad men behaving badly won't be back with new episodes for another month. But in the meantime, fans of the Emmy-winning series can catch up on all the drinking, smoking and skirt-chasing of the last season on DVD. In stores Tuesday.

THEATER

'Barack Stars':

The comedy troupe Second City and Barack Obama share a hometown in Chicago, so it was only a matter of time before the funny guys and gals set their sights on the president. Expect plenty of riffs on Obama's celebrity status, musical numbers and a manic Rahm Emanuel to make an appearance. Opens Tuesday at Woolly Mammoth Theatre in D.C.

Web: woollymammoth.net

RADIO

'Stoop Storytelling':

Finding a seat at a Stoop Storytelling show is usually hard work, but thanks to Aaron Henkin (below) and The Signal it just got a lot easier. Actually, any seat will do now that the series is making its radio debut. Maryland First Lady Katie O'Malley, actress Rain Pryor and author Larry Doyle are among the storytellers. Airs at noon and 7 p.m. Friday on WYPR (88.1 FM).

Web: stoopstorytelling.com

POP MUSIC

'Horehound' :

by The Dead Weather:

: Jack White takes some time off from the White Stripes with yet another side project. Luckily for us, his extracurriculars are more than just vanity projects. Horehound is heavy yet intriguing - kind of like White himself. In stores Tuesday. The band also performs Sunday and Monday at the 9:30 Club in Washington.

Web: 930.com

FILM

'Automorphosis':

Usually a crowd favorite at Artscape, the quirky Art Cars are now movie stars. This new documentary profiles the dedicated owners of visionary vehicles like Camera Van (below) and Telephone Car. The cars will be also on display on the Charles Street Bridge this weekend. Automorphosis screens 7 p.m. Thursday at the American Visionary Art Museum.

Web: avam.org

CONCERT

Cake:

Artscape returns this weekend with a solid musical lineup headlined by the Sacramento indie rock band known for cheeky hits like "Short Skirt/Long Jacket" and "The Distance." Cake draws plenty of fans when it visits Baltimore, so be sure to stake out your seats early for this free concert. Cake performs 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Artscape's main stage.

Web: baltimore.org

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