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Sunday brunch: Links for the week of 7-13 July 2013

Well, it’s been a strange weekend, news-wise, but let’s all relax with some fun links, shall we?

COMICS!

I should be browsing the Mothership more often, but I had to find a link to it here: Nick Dragotta talks East of West and how awesome Image is. Hickman plans 50 issues of East of West, and I can get behind that, because the book is excellent.

Mike Sterling, the handsomest man in comics retailing, writes about the time Ogden Whitney drew a story in Modeling with Millie. As if you needed a reason to read Modeling with Millie!

This is from last week, but I didn’t get a chance to do links last week, so I’ll post it this week: Batman the hoarder! Kerry Callen is a funny, funny person.

Robot 6 points out that a sculptor made something out of comics, and the comics happened to be worth $30,000 (they included an Avengers #1). Here’s the original article. Man, the comments section at Robot 6 is not kind to that sculptor at all. And then there’s the grammar argument. And the “It’s a fraud” argument! Lots of stuff in only 24 comments!

Javier Grillo-Marxuach has some good news: There will be a new Middleman comic. Yay!

The Mothership drops this article about Fraction’s “Inhumanity” on us. I don’t really care about yet another “EVERYTHING YOU THOUGHT YOU KNEW ABOUT THE MARVEL UNIVERSE WILL CHANGE!!!!” event, but I’m a bit puzzled about giving a ton of people on Earth superpowers. Wasn’t that the point of mutants? Didn’t Marvel specifically want mutants to be less prominent in the Marvel U., so they wiped most of them out? So now they’re just replacing mutants with Inhumans? Sigh.

This is an interesting take on Joe Casey’s Catalyst Comix. I’m not sure if I completely agree with it, but Smith makes some very strong points.

This is offered completely without comment: Ales Kot is off Suicide Squad.

NEWS FROM OREGON! (I can make any categories I want to!!!)

This is pretty cool: the Oregon legislature has approved a pilot program for “tuition-free” college at the state universities and community colleges. It’s not exactly “tuition-free” – you have to pay it back, but the repayment is a tiny portion of your post-degree income, and it’s a lot less onerous than student loans. Oregon: Being Awesome since 1859!

Of course, not all is rosy in the Beaver State. Here’s a story about a man who was convicted of … collecting rain water on his own property. Yes, that’s against the law in Medford! Well, Medford insists it’s not actually rain water, but still. Come on, Medford! I guess they’re way too close to those crazies in California!

HOW HAS OUR SOCIETY NOT DESTROYED ITSELF YET?

Here’s a story about a University of North Carolina student who was charged with a violation of the school’s honor code after she reported a rape. Sigh. Really, UNC?

POLITICS CAN BE FUN!

Representative Mark Takano (who used to teach high school) grades a Republican’s letter to John Boehner, and he doesn’t like what he sees. Takano seems like he’s enjoying himself: Here’s his tumblr.

HISTORY AND SOCIETY!

A friend of mine sent me this link, which is about an odd new film, in which the documentarian – Josh Oppenheimer – recreates the mass killings in Indonesia in 1965. It’s a phenomenal article, although I’m not sure that people have completely forgotten about the killings. I mean, we all saw The Year of Living Dangerously, right?

POP CULTURE!

Before you get all excited about Charlie Kaufman adapting Slaughterhouse-5 for Guillermo del Toro to direct, keep in mind that del Toro is attached to something like 10-15 projects a year, and in 20 years since his first movie, he’s directed 8 films. So, yeah. Grain of salt and all that.

So The Lone Ranger was a massive bomb, despite Larry Young’s endorsement (sorry, Larry!). I haven’t seen it, nor do I have any desire to see it, but I found the arguments about it fascinating. This is an interesting argument: Is the Lone Ranger too racist to be remade, no matter how much the filmmakers are aware of the problem of Tonto? I guess we’ll see in 30 years, when someone else decides to remake it!

Why, yes, that is a giant statue of Colin Firth, why do you ask?

Apparently, Kevin Bacon bribes wedding DJs so they won’t play “Footloose,” because people always want to see him dance. It’s a funny video, because it includes a discussion about whether Bacon is “fuckable.” It’s an argument for the ages!

Are all Pixar movies connected? This guy makes a compelling case. I later saw an article on another site that linked to this, and it was really astonishing how angry some of the commenters were about this theory. I mean, really enraged. About a goofy exercise about fictional movies that’s just a lot of fun. People are weird.

SHARKNADO!!!!!

I must admit, I didn’t watch Sharknado. I’ve been very distracted this week, and I didn’t get a chance to DVR it and SyFy, inexplicably, isn’t rerunning it until August. But the Internet exploded with Sharknado material, and here’s some of it!

First, we have an interview with the writer, whose name is, no lie, Thunder Levin. It’s a very funny interview – Levin doesn’t take it all that seriously, which is nice.

Danger Guerrero, who is one of the funniest writers on the Internet, has a good discussion about Sharknado.

Twitter went nuts over Sharknado, and here are some of the best reactions. Here are some other awesome tweets from Mia Farrow, Patton Oswalt, and Damon Lindelof.

Did Sharknado save the summer? It’s certainly possible, although the world responded with a shitty weekend, didn’t it?

Of course, there’s going to be a sequel, and here are possible names for one.

Some big poopy heads like to point out that Sharknado got really bad ratings, but as many people have argued, the Neilsen ratings are a terrible indicator of who’s watching, as they’re geared toward the people who watch stuff on CBS, which is why CBS dominates the ratings. The Neilsens don’t take into account any new media, and it would be nice if someone came up with a better way to track who’s watching what. SyFy is still planning a sequel, so perhaps we’ll get to see Ian Ziering carve up some more sharks.

01-shark-jump

I can’t top that, so I’m done. Have a better day, everyone!

8 Comments

I just saw The Lone Ranger yesterday, and if more people actually watched it instead of just talking about it, they’d realize how non-racist it really is. It’s definitely more pro-Indian than it is pro-white.

Really, people who are claiming the movie’s racist without actually seeing it are assuming Tonto is representative of an entire people, and isn’t that the real racism? Tonto’s sort of crazy and plays into Indian stereotypes to get one over on white people, and his tribe looks down on him for it.

Sharknado is re-airing sometime this Thursday.

I think it would be pretty easy to do a non-racist Lone Ranger, right? As a bromance? The story of a “Lone” Ranger, who becomes best pals with a member of a warring culture, that he’s told he’s supposed to fight against.

Really, people who are claiming the movie’s racist without actually seeing it are assuming Tonto is representative of an entire people, and isn’t that the real racism?

No, it’s not. It’s not at all. Because those people are assuming that Tonto is representative of the filmmakers’ depiction of an entire people, not of the people themselves. The people who say this movie looks hella racist know damn well that Native Americans aren’t like that, so they look at Johnny Depp all dolled up like that and say, “What the hell is this?”

I know that’s the standard rhetoric now, to say that people who object to racism are the real racists, and that people who call out sexism when they see it are the real sexists, but it’s an absurd thing to say in this context. Actually, it’s almost always a ridiculous claim, but especially here.

Bill: Ah, good to know. I hadn’t checked out the schedule yet, but I’ll keep my eye out for it!

Chad: Well, I think the people who are writing about the movie have seen it. I haven’t, so I really have no opinion about it.

re: Kot and SS: I’ll say it again. It’s like DC doesn’t want my money anymore.

For the news to come this week is pretty weird, because the SS issue that came out this week was pretty good and is, I think, Kot’s attempt at the plot of Watchmen in one issue. No, really. There are a couple overt Watchmen refs (Unknown Soldier says “hurm”, the villain says she did something 2 minutes ago), and the storyline involves a giant dying creature with psychic type powers wreaking havoc in a major US city. (With a touch of an early Clive Barker story about a creature made up of humans.)

Hell, if they’d gone with a more tentacled creature, it could have been Suicide Squid.

OK, it might have just been me.

But looking at Kot’s comment about being off the book, he was quite classy about saying good things about Matt Kindt. Very nice.

Tom Fitzpatrick

July 15, 2013 at 6:23 am

I smiled at that bit about Kevin Bacon. His character on The Following, Ryan Hardy would just pull out his gun and shoot the music equipment! ;-)

But really, can you blame him? He did make that movie to launch his career. I’m sure he’d like to forget it.

@buttler Maybe racism was too strong a word, but my point remains: people shouldn’t judge a culture’s depiction in a movie based strictly on one character unless that character is the only example of that culture in the movie. As it stands, I thought the movie was very reverential to Native Americans and their culture, and Tonto is an outlier because people are allowed to be individuals. The only thing I can see that people have a good point about is that they had a white guy play Tonto instead a real American Indian.

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