MARVEL AT THE RECOVERY: When last we left Special Agent Phil Coulson, he was being skewered with an Asgardian spear by an over-acting Norse demigod. Luckily for him, no death is ever permanent in Hollywood. Despite his demise in “The Avengers,” ABC is bringing him back to life on the small screen in “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” The show, about the secret government agency that hangs out with superheroes and has an abundance of punctuation, debuts at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
LOCAL LIQUOR LEGEND? If the settlers on the American frontier of the early 1800s didn’t like to take a nip or two from the ol’ brown jug, you might never have heard of John Chapman. Who? You’ve never heard of him anyway? Oh, yes you have. You just don’t know it yet. John, as his parents called him, began travelling around parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois planting apple tree nurseries – a craft he learned by spending time in Wilkes-Barre in the 1790s. The frontiersmen didn’t cherish these apples for their taste. No, they were way too sour. They used them to make hard cider and applejack. And so, “Johnny Appleseed,” spreader of fine booze ingredients, became an American legend. Amaze your friends with these facts on Thursday, which is Johnny Appleseed Day.
FOOD OR FORMULA ONE? Movie fans with kids are in for a dilemma this week. The little ones will be imploring you, “Pwease take us to see ‘Cwoudy With A Chance of Meatbawws 2’,” the sequel to the witty animated 2009 hit, which comes complete with animal-food hybrid thingies like Tacodiles and Shrimpanzees. The serious movie fan will want a front row seat for “Rush,” the dramatic story of a real-life rivalry between Formula One racers in the 1970s. Hmmm … Talking cucumbers, or “Thor” in a race car?” … The choice is yours, my friend. Both flicks open Friday so you have until then to decide.
HOCKEY NIGHT IN NEPA: It’s time to start forechecking, fighting and freezing the puck again. Or, if you prefer another alliterative letter: breaking away, boarding and body checking. Yes, hockey season is approaching and that means the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins will be opening their exhibition schedule this Friday with a game against the Rochester Americans. (Wait. I thought we were ALL Americans.) The game starts at 7:05 p.m. at the Mohegan Sun Arena.
AMERICA’S GOATS JUMP ON DUNKIN’: Legend has it, an Ethiopian goat herder named Kaldi discovered coffee when he noticed his goats jumping around after they ate some of it. Is it true? Probably not, but one thing is certain: The world sure loves its coffee. So, to show this devotion, several countries are observing National Coffee Day on Sunday. In Malaysia, they’ll be enjoying “kopi.” In Sweden, folks will be drinking “kaffe.” And in Canada, it’s “A Cup O’ Joe, eh?” Some places even give out free coffee to note the day, so you might get yourself a freebie.