“We live in a world that’s thought to have consumed every piece of material from the Star Wars franchise. But chances are, you haven’t heard of Black Angel, probably because it was lost for over three decades. The 1980 short film was created to accompany The Empire Strikes Back in theaters. It was the directorial debut of Star Wars’ pioneering set decorator Roger Christian and a special request by the big man himself, George Lucas. After it screened in cinemas, it suddenly vanished. For years, no copies could be located. The film only existed as a rumored relic in fanboy conversations. Well, until recently…. It has nothing to do with Star Wars characters”—Curious article about a lost short film commissioned by Lucas in the 80’s, recently rediscovered (called the “Lost Star Wars Movie” by Esquire, though it has nothing to do with Star Wars other than to play near it— Esquire just needed a dumb hook for their article so it’d get hits). Christian also did set design for Alien and Life of Brian, before directing Battlefield Earth…
“In a sense, Donelly has become a muse in her own right. For the ongoing “Swan Song Series,” she has enlisted a range of friends from different backgrounds, from writers (Rick Moody, Mary Gaitskill) to musicians, many of whom have been seminal voices themselves in Boston’s music scene, such as Bill Janovitz (Buffalo Tom), Chris Ewen (Future Bible Heroes), and Hilken Mancini (Fuzzy). Naomi Yang (Damon & Naomi, Galaxie 500) directed the haunting video for “Mass Ave.””—mary fucking gaitskill worked on the new tanya donelly EPs? (more reason why they should have been written up everywhere. the hype cycle and my tastes keep growing farther and farther apart.)
From politics to the personal, from fashion to food, from the campus to the locker room, the desire to be cool has infected all aspects of our lives. At its most harmless, it is annoying. At its worst, it is deadly, on a massive scale. The Cool are the termites of life, infiltrating every nook and cranny and destroying it from within. The Cool report the news, write the scripts, teach our children, run our government—and each day they pass judgment on those who don’t worship at the altar of their coolness. The cool fawn over terrorists, mock the military, and denigrate employers. They are, in short, awful people.
From what we wear and what we eat, to what we smoke and who we poke, pop culture is crafted and manipulated by the cool and, to Greg Gutfeld, that’s Not Cool.
Do you think of your audience when you draw a comic, or imagine someone reading your comic as you draw it? Or do you draw for yourself?
I draw my comics for homicide detectives, so that is who I imagine reading my comics as I work on them.
You know the type. Watched his mom and sister get gunned down over his dad’s drug debts and swore he’d become a cop. Last time he saw his father was when he had to testify against him, but it looks like he’ll have to pay a visit to the state prison to see if he can shake some information about Big Joe Paglia out of him. He has the highest clearance rate in the precinct but he’s never gonna make captain with that chip on his shoulder and that devil on his back. His marriage went to shit ever since he started hitting the bottle. He wants to stop, but he can’t shake that image of his partner’s body getting torn into by the Antelope Ripper after he tied the both of him up in the governor’s mansion. His new partner seems eager, but he can’t trust her yet - she’s a little green, a “diversity hire”, if you know what I mean. She might be the only friend he’s got, though. He knows what the other detectives think of him. He’s no rat, but when they all skimmed a little off the Rordiguez heroin seizure and he passed on taking anything, they started looking at him funny. Doesn’t help that the chief has been riding him ever since he disobeyed a direct order to lay off the mayor’s son’s drug charge. Doesn’t help that he has his ex-wife calling him ten times a day for alimony. He just ended a twelve hour shift by talking a tweaker out of murdering a baby he was using as a hostage and he wants to relax. He goes to his local, orders a shot a cold one, slams a quarter into the jukebox to play his favourite - Charlie “Bird” Parker. He opens up the newest issue of Lose. It’s the only good, pure thing in his day - the only ray of light in his miserable fucking life.
“I never want to give up my love and passion for pizza. However, I would like to be able to go to a restaurant where they didn’t serve pizza and order off the menu, which I can’t really do right now. My fiancée is vegetarian, so it would be nice to be able to go out to nicer restaurants with her. We’re sort of limited as to where we go because of my pizza addiction. But at the same time, I don’t want to give it up. And I don’t want to become a foodie or one of those people that has a fetish around food—other than pizza—because I think that’s a dumb by-product of our narcissist society. They have to have locally grown food from around the corner and all that bullshit. I like processed food. I like preservatives and pizza.”—Dan Janssen, a diabetic 38 year old man who claims to have been eating cheese pizzas “exclusively every day of my life for the past 25 years”, usually a 14” pizza because he is a vegetarian who doesn’t like vegetables.
“The news of a Northern California couple’s discovery of more than 1,400 gold coins hidden on their property has experts, history buffs and regular folks speculating on the treasure’s origin. Though officials said it is unlikely the coins were stolen in a turn-of-the-century theft at the U.S. Mint in San Francisco, some wonder if the cache could be one of many believed buried by the Knights of the Golden Circle.
The secretive, subversive Confederate group is thought to have hidden millions in ill-gotten gold across a dozen states to finance a second Civil War.”—
I think this was the plot of a Lt. Blueberry comic. KNIGHTS OF THE GOLDEN CIRCLE! ”The Northern California couple had walked the path on their gold country property for years before they spotted the edge of a rusty can peeking out of the moss in February 2013.”
Wikipedia— “According to a few fringe historians, after the Civil War, the [Knights of the Golden Circle] went underground and became a secret society. Furthermore, it has been alleged that the James-Younger Gang was the principal source of funds for a second U.S. Civil War that never occurred.” (James being, like, Jesse James). Fringe historians, hidden gold, famous cowboys, secret societies— how is Nicolas Cage not in this story???
They’re figuring the value of the coins at $10 million dollars.
“A video has surfaced of two L.A. gang members, claiming they are fighting in Syria—and siding with President Bashar al-Assad.
One calls himself “Creeper” from Sur-13 (a.k.a. Surenos), a SoCal gang with ties to the Mexican Mafia, and the other is “Wino” from the Westside Armenian Power gang, according to the Washington Post. They are fighting the “enemigos,” and Creeper adds, “In Middle East, homie, in Syria, still gangbanging, not giving a fuck, homie.”
Creeper gives shout-outs to their buddies back home: Capone-E, Mr. Criminal from Silver Lake, Cyclone from Pasadena, and he doesn’t forget Pink Lady either. However, neither of them really explain why they’re fighting on the side of Assad.”—What in the living fuck? Also: ”Mr. Criminal from Silver Lake." Even Silver Lake’s gang-bangers are ironic???
“I found out that my husband of less than a year was cheating on me - though I found this out face to face, not via phone or computer. I was obviously gutted. I decided to try and work things out with him (not a genius plan, surprise) and a few days after I found out, he went out one night and left his laptop with his work email up. After deliberating for an hour or more, I finally searched her name in his email.
It was really bad. It had been going on for almost 6 months. He was the instigator. There were emails and calendar events. Dates when he borrowed my car, dates when he was out of town for work, dates when I was hanging out with friends. Sadly, my grandfather passed away on my birthday a few months before I found out about this. My family is very close and offered to fly us both back to the memorial. He told me he couldn’t go because of work. I discovered through the emails that he lied about having to work and used the days I was out of town to plan a weekend with her. Yeah.
There were dozens of stories like this, though that was the most painful. It was like the end of The Sixth Sense. It was very hard to see, but I honestly needed to see it.”—Man, Aziz Ansari’s Modern Dating/relationships questionnaire— if I didn’t have things to do at work, this would be my entire day. I would make popcorn. It’d be just like the end of the Sixth Sense— at the end, it’d turn out I was a ghost the entire time. (?)
“I made [Watchmen] to save it from the Terry Gilliams of this world. […] I always feel like — and I always believe the movies I’ve made are smarter than the way they are perceived by sort of mass culture and by the critics. We set out to make smarter movies than what they’re perceived to be, do you know what I mean? And, also, “It looks like a video game.” Well, maybe it’s supposed to look like a video game.”—Zack Snyder.
Among this year’s Oscar acceptance speeches, “the ‘12 Years a Slave’ crew had to acknowledge that they were riding to victory on the legacy of slavery … And Cate Blanchett had to find a way of thanking a director who’s not exactly Mr. Popular.” How did everyone fare?
Imagine that every time you said the word “movie” you could count on a significant portion of your audience picturing the Universal monsters; unless they were extra-sophisticated cinephiles, in which case they thought of the Hammer versions.
Imagine that movie theaters were grungy, unwelcoming holes in the walls of weird areas of town that were hard to get to and that there were fewer and fewer of them every year
"Boy, the food at this place is really terrible." The other one says, "Yeah, I know, and such small portions." — convicted (by the Internet) criminal Woody Allen.
I apologize in advance if this is a little on the cruel side, but: Imagine that Warren Ellis in March of 2000 wrote an essay for one of the “monster movie” websites where he complained “what if the history of books were all just nurse novels?” Imagine that was a pretty dumb metaphor back then (though in his defense he was at least engaged in a purposeful rhetoric, i.e. he was selling shit / himself/ etc.). Imagine how it’s only gotten to be a fucking dumber thing to talk about after the subsequent 14 years of achievements of hard working people in key roles expanding the scope of comics with reprints of classical material, the rise of the literary graphic novel, an influx of foreign material, a vibrant art comics scene, etc. (“Dumb ideas that are more than 10 years old” is what comics in general looks like to me, so that’s a fun coincidence, at least).
Regardless of the question of who the true author is for your 14 year old ideas or how original your 14 year old ideas are (because who cares who thought of something first— ideas are free and should be free), imagine someone created an internet where anyone can talk about anything they want to; imagine there’s a billion ways to do that. Imagine that people who loved monster movies then proceeded to talk about monster movies. Imagine that all those other people finally given the opportunity to talk about anything else, anything else at all that struck their fancy, instead just spent their time complaining not even about monster movies but about monster movie fans …
Look, we all know that there’s a trope in the movies where someone of a minority race is flattened out into just being “good at X” and that the white protagonist is the one we root for because unlike the guy who’s just “good at X” the protagonist has human depth, human relationships, a human point of view—and this somehow makes him more worthy of success than the antagonist who seems to exist just to be good at X.
So we root for Rocky against black guys who, by all appearances, really are better boxers than he is, because unlike them Rocky isn’t JUST a boxer, he has a girlfriend, he has hopes, he has dreams, etc. This comes up over and over again in movies where the athletic black competitor is set up as the “heel”—look at the black chick in Million Dollar Baby and how much we’re pushed to hate her. Look at all this “Great White Hope” stuff, historically, with Joe Louis.
So is it any surprise that this trope comes into play with Asians? That the Asian character in the movie is the robotic, heartless, genius mastermind who is only pure intellect and whom we’re crying out to be defeated by some white guy who may not be as brainy but has more pluck, more heart, more humanity? It’s not just Flash Gordon vs. Ming the Merciless, it’s stuff like how in the pilot episode of Girls Hannah gets fired in favor of an overachieving Asian girl who’s genuinely better at her job than she is (the Asian girl knows Photoshop and she doesn’t) and we’re supposed to sympathize with Hannah.
I wonder what it looks like when Mario Lopez thinks about how someday everyone he ever loved will be dead. Is he dancing, but it’s, like… a sad dance? Is it like that dance the little short guy does in Twin Peaks? What kind of dance does “existential despair Mario Lopez” do?
“In 1998, Vic Tandy, experimental officer and part-time lecturer in the school of international studies and law at Coventry University, and Dr. Tony Lawrence of the psychology department wrote a paper called “Ghosts in the Machine” for the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research. Their research suggested that an infrasonic signal of 19 Hz might be responsible for some ghost sightings.
Tandy was working late one night alone in a supposedly haunted laboratory at Warwick, when he felt very anxious and could detect a grey blob out of the corner of his eye. When Tandy turned to face the grey blob, there was nothing.
The following day, Tandy was working on his fencing foil, with the handle held in a vise. Although there was nothing touching it, the blade started to vibrate wildly. Further investigation led Tandy to discover that the extractor fan in the lab was emitting a frequency of 18.98 Hz, very close to the resonant frequency of the eye given as 18 Hz by NASA. This was why Tandy had seen a ghostly figure—it was an optical illusion caused by his eyeballs resonating. The room was exactly half a wavelength in length, and the desk was in the centre, thus causing a standing wave which caused the vibration of the foil.”—Oh, Ghosts are Infrasound.