Another Day, Another Brain-Blast
This may be my favorite comment I’ve ever written on RPS.  And I didn’t write it.  Martin Luther King did.

Letter From A Birmingham Jail, motherf***ers.  Look it up.

drops mic

This may be my favorite comment I’ve ever written on RPS. And I didn’t write it. Martin Luther King did.

Letter From A Birmingham Jail, motherf***ers. Look it up.

drops mic

Urami-Bushi - Meiko Kaji

As heard in Kill Bill Volume 2.

If I Had A Heart - Fever Ray

Happy Dark Souls II (on consoles) day, everybody!

Well, happy in the sense that Dark Souls II is out.  The thought of playing it fills me with glorious dread.  You weary travelers who have found your way to the doom-soaked kingdom of Lordran know what I mean.

The song above is as close as I can get to a Dark Souls theme song without composing one myself.  Although I’m now wondering if an early Leonard Cohen song or some of the more cryptic Townes Van Zandt songs would be better, I must say.  Oh well.  There’s always next week.

Got a project or two in the works, one of which will hit this blog soon.  So look forward to that.
There Is An End - The Greenhornes

I forgot to do this yesterday.  Whoops.

Here’s the song that was the basis for my first screenplay (still unproduced, he said, as if that was in doubt).  I first heard it in Jim Jarmusch’s Broken Flowers, the apotheosis of the Existentially Troubled Bill Murray film and one of Jarmusch’s more accessible (read: still pretty frigid and forbidding relative to “regular” movies) works.

It’s interesting that Neil Young scored Jarmusch’s Dead Man, because I’d say that Jarmusch is Young’s closest antecedent in film.  You could argue persuasively that Woody Allen is more deserving of that title, and you could even argue for Oliver Stone, but Jarmusch and Young share more traits with each other than Young shares with either of those two.  Both men are remarkably prolific, both men seem utterly disinterested in broad commercial appeal, both men are more than willing to alienate even their most devoted fans, and both men cultivate an air of deliberate obsolescence.  If that makes any sense.

You caught me just as that weird little digression occurred to me.  So, uh, bonus content?

Werewolves Of London - Warren Zevon

Oops!  Forgot to post this yesterday on account of my sleep schedule’s screwed up.

You’ll forgive me if I forgo the usual comment or two about the song, won’t you?  I am Busy with Important Work.

A Thought
This is something I said in conversation on a forum I frequent.  Some of the syntax is rougher than I’d like, but I was struck by how well the metaphor worked.  I’ve added a few words here and there to make it slightly clearer.  Enjoy:

Being promiscuous, by itself, is fine and dandy.  There are, of course, risks associated with promiscuous behavior (pregnancy, STDs, etc.), but there are risks associated with a lot of activities people enjoy.You’ll notice there is no social stigma attached to skydiving, yet that’s arguably much riskier than the repeated pursuit of casual sex.

Skydivers are not discriminated against based on their gender, sexual preference, ethnicity, etc. When a skydiver’s parachute fails to work, the skydiver’s immediate family does not disown her. At worst, some people who hear about the accident on the news might think What an idiot! to themselves exactly once, before going back to whatever it is they were doing.

Men who weren’t allowed to go on a skydiving trip for whatever reason don’t speak of themselves as “earthzoned.” Men who don’t want to skydive or haven’t been able to skydive yet aren’t treated like they’re less than other men, and men who skydive constantly aren’t celebrated as conquering heroes. There is not an entire genre of movies devoted to the quest of “losers” who haven’t skydived [skydove?] yet to skydive before the end of the school year.

There is no social pressure on teenagers to skydive before their friends, and teenage girls are not buffeted by that pressure and the pressure not to skydive until they perform an arbitrary ritual for the benefit of their parents and the knowledge that if they skydive once before that arbitrary ritual, they’ll be looked down upon as “damaged goods.” Girls aren’t thrown out of a plane without a parachute, stuck with some unfair label by the guy who threw them out of the plane, and stricken forever after with a pathological fear of/fascination with guys/parachutes/the ground/heights/planes.

There aren’t multiple religions that forbid everyone from skydiving before the arbitrary ritual, and those who practice said religions don’t let boys off with a slap on the wrist and disown or honor-kill girls for “tempting” the boys [to go skydiving]. [The] media doesn’t constantly show girls getting punished for skydiving and men being rewarded for it. There are not constant ads on TV where models in outfits ill-suited for skydiving do exactly that while drinking a refreshing Pepsi Cola. There are not foul-smelling “body sprays” for men which purport to aid in the acquisition of a female skydiving partner. Mixed messages regarding the coolness and danger of skydiving are not beamed into children’s heads until they don’t know what the f**k to do with their lives. And, of course, religious organizations do not try to tell children that parachutes are a sin, leading to a rash of falling deaths.

…Wow. The way our society reacts to sexual promiscuity sounds really f***ing dumb when you replace “sex” with “skydiving,” doesn’t it? I wonder why.

Belle & Sebastian - The Model

I started humming this song five minutes before posting.  Sometimes that’s the only push I need.

In re Weekend Viewing: I’ll be real with y’all.  The reason I haven’t posted anything is because I’m at a loss for what to post.  I also hate the name of the column, and my sleep schedule has been a nightmare as of late, but neither of those things would necessarily stop me from posting if I had something worth posting.  I’m going to spend the next few days getting back on schedule, and then reevaluate the situation.

EDIT:  Oops!   Wrote this earlier, and somehow forgot to post it.
A Reminder, For Those Who Have Forgotten

If you make other fans feel uncomfortable, you’re being a bad fan.

If you make other fans feel stupid, you’re being a bad fan.

If you abuse other fans to make yourself look cool, you’re being a bad fan.

If you treat fans of things you’re not a fan of as bad fans, you’re being a bad fan.

If you make other fans feel excluded, you’re being a bad fan.

If you assume someone isn’t a “real fan” because they don’t look or act like the fans you know, you’re being a bad fan.

If you assume someone is “faking their fandom” to “get attention,” and you make them feel unwelcome based on that assumption, you’re being a bad fan even if your assumption turns out to be true.

If you say someone isn’t a “true fan” of a thing because “only a true fan” would know the answer to an insanely specific question the fan under suspicion can’t answer, you’re being a bad fan.

If you harshly judge fans who are less and/or more devoted to your fandom than you, you’re being a bad fan.

If you can’t laugh at something you love, you’re being a bad fan.

If you take the idea of a “fan hierarchy” seriously, you’re being a bad fan.

If you’re unkind to new fans, you’re being a bad fan.

Stop sucking.  Be awesome.  Be a good fan.

DISCLAIMER: I am vaguely certain that adding “being” to these sentences effs up the syntax and/or grammar in a way I cannot currently identify.  I don’t feel like fixing this right now, and the message that word choice sends (that nobody is condemned to always being a bad fan) is more important than the syntax and/or grammar.  Don’t bother me about it, or I shall be very cross.  Very cross indeed.

I met Iggy Pop at Max’s Kansas City in 1970 or 1971. Me, Iggy, and Lou Reed at one table with absolutely nothing to say to each other, just looking at each other’s eye makeup.
David Bowie (via tamburina)

Maybe the best two sentences in the history of sentences.


I was working on a blog post about Doom 2 and the importance of sound design on my community blog at Destructoid, and it was looking great and flowing well…






Then He Kissed Me - The Crystals

Almost forgot to put up a Music Monday post!

As for the song, I love close-harmony girl groups and Phil Spector-produced singles, what can I say?
What I’m Going To Do

First Weekend Viewing will go up sometime during the week. Second will go up this coming weekend.

Sorry, still busy.

Bonnie Tyler - Total Eclipse of the Heart

Yeah, this song’s cheesy as hell.  Touch the tip of your index finger to the tip of your thumb to see how many f**ks I give.

One day I will put this in a devastating scene in a movie, and then you’ll all see.
Weekend Viewing Coming Next Weekend

Sorry about that.  It’s been an unusually busy weekend.

Music Monday goes up tomorrow, though.  Look for it!

Men Of Good Fortune - Lou Reed

Here, folks, listen to what may be my favorite song from one of the greatest and most bitterly depressing rock albums ever recorded, Lou Reed’s Berlin.  You should be Spotifying the crap out of it right now.  Or you could just buy it.

You may have noticed that I didn’t post a Film Friday last week.  That wasn’t exactly by design, but it did give me an opportunity to rethink Film Friday as a going concern.  I’ve missed a whole bunch of them recently, and when I’ve posted one, it’s been on a Saturday more often than not.  The name sets it up as a counterpart to Music Monday, and it was originally meant as such.  However, the work involved in the two is hardly equal.

What’s more, I often want to write other stuff about movies, but I have about one longer post in me per week - two, if I’m lucky.  I know the FF posts aren’t always that long, but their length doesn’t tell the story of how much effort I sink into them, believe me.  Nine times out of ten, they take up an absurd amount of time I could spend doing other writing - fiction, for example.  And, let’s face it, sometimes the end result is clearly a case of me attempting to stretch “I like it, it’s good” out into a couple of paragraphs.

The other thing I’ve noticed is that writing about movies I like is harder than writing about movies I find interesting.  You’d think those two categories would be identical, but they’re not.  They overlap heavily, but some movies I like aren’t very interesting to write about, or so much has been said about them already that I’m only repeating things someone smarter and more prolific than me said.  On the other hand, plenty of movies I do find intensely interesting are not very good.  One of my favorite hobbies is figuring out why a movie that should work doesn’t - or vice versa, though that’s rarer.

Another problem is that I’ve kept to a fairly strict policy of not spoiling anything about the movie.  Frankly, that was always a bad idea, and I shouldn’t have kept to it as long as I did.  Some people can write long pieces about movies without giving away much of anything, but what I tend to do best in my critical writing is in-depth analysis of content, not doing a rhetorical dance around said content.

In the face of all the realities above, I have decided to put Film Friday out to pasture.  If you like Film Friday, though, don’t worry, because it’s only the name I’m retiring, not the concept.  I will still be writing a piece on a single film every week, or as near as I can get, and I will still try and post it on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday.

There will be some changes to the format in order to focus on my strengths as a writer and a critic, however:

1) I will be operating under the assumption that you’ve already watched the movie I recommended, and as such will not hesitate to spoil anything and everything about it.

2) The movies I talk about will be ones that are interesting to me for some reason, but may or may not be great or even good, so you shouldn’t necessarily take me writing about a given movie as a recommendation.

3) I may not discuss all or even most of the film.  Sometimes, I’ll analyze one critical scene in the film.  Other times, I may talk about a certain aspect of it to the exclusion of all else.  The point will be to write about what interests me, rather than trying to be comprehensive in my analysis.  I will, however, be happy to discuss anything you all might have wanted me to cover.  Just send me an ask, and I’ll respond in public or in private - whatever the person who asks wants.

4) I’ll put the piece up at any time between when I get up on Friday and when I go to sleep on Sunday (which will include the hours after midnight, which would technically be Monday morning, except that it isn’t, because if I’m still awake, then it’s still Sunday, dammit).  It’s high time I made this a feature instead of a bug.

5) The new column will be called Weekend Viewing.  Or possibly something else, assuming I come up with a better name in between this post and the first Weekend Viewing column.

We clear?  Good.