Monday, February 14, 2011


What Bill's thinking/watching/reading/writing/doing. This is the shape of my head.

//Black Sabbath is another one of those Italian giallo films-- I'm a bit addicted now. This one lent Ozzy's band its name and Pulp Fiction its structure, according to the infallible internet. "A Drop of Water," the first story in the American version and the last in the Italian, makes the whole film. Once again, it's all about the colors-- gorgeous, eerie, unsettling colors, adding to the general Poe vibe of the whole story. It very much looks and feels like a short story from EC Comics-- in fact, the whole movie is basically an issue of Tales from the Crypt or Vault of Horror or what have you, including its own creepy host character, played here by Boris Karloff, who also appears in one of the stories, looking like a vampiric Mark Twain.

//Mike Norton's Battlepug.

//Giger bar.

//Great Gatsby reconfigured for the NES, like some even-more-feverish fever dream version of Michael Jackson's Moonwalker I played on the Sega Genesis. Damn those spectacles.

//Jack Nicholson's Joker = Jack Nicholson's R.P. McMurphy in whiteface.

//Matt Seneca writes about racist caricatures in Will Eisner's Spirit:
When I try to think of a comparison for the comics field's benign neglect of Eisner's Spirit work, the first thing that jumps to mind is the recent, much-maligned "New South" edition of Huckleberry Finn, which replaces all Mark Twain's original-text uses of the word "nigger" with "slave". New books for a new world. But it's not a perfect comparison because Ebony White, the ridiculously offensive racial caricature above, was the Spirit's sidekick for the better part of a decade -- and this being comics, there's no easy way to replace Eisner's cringe-inducing pickaninny with a more palatable depiction of the black kid who helped Denny Colt's alter ego out of many a jam when he wasn't commenting wryly on the hero's tangled love life.
Berlatsky rebuts:
Cutting out “nigger” from Huck Twain defaces one of the great anti-racist texts we’ve got; doing so lies about the nature and the contours of the struggle against. On the other hand, Ebony White doesn’t show Eisner struggling with racism. It just shows him being racist. And when you talk about Ebony White as part of a “textured, carnivalesque America of yesteryear,” you come really close to celebrating it for its racist caricature. Because that textured, carnivalesque America? It was really racist — more racist than Mark Twain’s America, in many ways, which still had a strong strain of racial idealism and hope which got crushed after massive Southern resistance to Reconstruction.
And Seneca rebuts again in the comments, etc. Anyway, it's an intriguing argument, with two valid sides to it. When's the last time both sides of a piece of internet discourse made valid points? Never?

//Tina Fey, sayin' stuff:
I know older men in comedy who can barely feed and clean themselves, and they still work. The women, though, they’re all “crazy.” I have a suspicion - and hear me out, because this is a rough one - that the definition of “crazy” in show business is a woman who keeps talking even after no one wants to fuck her anymore.

The only person I can think of who has escaped the “crazy” moniker is Betty White, which, obviously, is because people still want to have sex with her.
I wish I was half the woman she is.

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