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Heaven in Technicolor

Splice Today 

The Archers have always been hit or miss for me. Or: one hit, one miss. Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, legendary post-war Brits, are in my experience one of the handfuls of entryways to classic film in that Janus-sphere of influence. I’d say it's fair to have them in a pantheon alongside the likes of Bergman, Fellini, and Kurosawa as “filmmakers for getting into film.” While I’ve liked many elements of The Red Shoes (1948) since I was a teenager, Black Narcissus (1947) never clicked for me, and ended my early exploration of the duo. Читать дальше...

Black Hysteria Month

Splice Today 

It’s nice that Saturday Night Live let an un-p.c. media personality who’d previously made controversial remarks about blacks back onto the show. I refer not to comedian Shane Gillis but Nikki Haley (who’ll likely exit the presidential race after further primary defeats a week from now on Super Tuesday).

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English as Tuppence

Splice Today 

Vivian Stanshall was the lead singer, composer and multi-instrumentalist with the 1060s comedy outfit, the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band. He favored strange instruments such as the euphonium and the ukulele. The Bonzos reached the height of fame when they were featured in the Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour film (1967) playing a song called “Death Cab For Cutie.” You can watch that here. That’s Stanshall up front, all six foot two of him, lank and lean, with ginger hair, moustache and eyelashes, doing a credible impression of Elvis Presley. Читать дальше...

Cocaine Isn’t the New Pot, Is It?

Splice Today 

I guess I always thought that marijuana was one thing and cocaine something else. Now cocaine appears to have moved into the space that marijuana used to occupy. Marijuana’s legal and cocaine’s the extra bit of fun that’s obtained from sketchy characters who are full of crap about what they’re selling. Having slipped into this new cultural slot, the scary old product’s been normalized. Cocaine’s now the occasion for “wouldn’t you know it” humor.

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False Glory of "The New"

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One of the more curious American late-20th century cultural events was the introduction and subsequent removal of New Coke from store shelves in 1985. I remember thinking, “Interesting, the Coca-Cola company is committing suicide,” Why did they do it? “Old Coke” had, through years of TV commercials, jingles and billboards, established itself as the ideal representation of everything good about America. It didn’t discriminate, it was available to all and it crossed social and class boundaries. And now it was gone. Читать дальше...

The Summer Sun, Part 3

Splice Today 

Timmy dropped the A&W redhead carhop like a piping-hot hot potato, hopped back into his red Ferrari, screeched out of the lot in chase of a dream, a vision, a blue-eyed blonde in a white Jaguar, its top down, all of her allures to be leered by whomever. The sheer brazenness of her opulent beauty on the display to just any Tom, Dick and Harry inflamed Timmy's brain to near breaking point.

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Why Do We Need Superheroes?

Splice Today 

I never saw Iron Man. 2008 was a long ways away from 2002, when I saw Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man six times. Like I wrote last week, my comic book phase only lasted a few years, and in the very early-2000s; I consider myself lucky to have been in the rarefied demographic of Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace (six-years-old), and even more so to enjoy Bryan Singer’s X-Men in 2000. I didn’t get the hype over X2 three years later, and I saw Spider-Man 2 just once. In the new book MCU: The Reign of Marvel Studios... Читать дальше...

Booked It

Splice Today 

Something I’ve never grasped is how many people—pre- and post-internet—breathlessly exclaim how they couldn’t live without their collection of books. “If there was a fire in the house, first I’d grab the cat and then as many books as I could carry,” is a paraphrase—perhaps verbatim, come to think of it—of a typical book fetishist, though maybe that diminishes other fetishes. In the modern era, it’s not uncommon to see photos of lovingly categorized and arranged volumes, stacked in expensive bookcases or metal milk crates... Читать дальше...

Anti-Trump Lawfare Entities May Reap a Backlash

Splice Today 

It was nothing more than a segue to a commercial, Fox News anchor Martha Miller summed up her network’s official position on the candidacy of Donald Trump. Miller said, and I’m paraphrasing, “If only they [the media’s Trump detractors and Soros-inspired legal community] had just ignored him, who knows how things might have gone?” Then, with a pained expression on her face, she said, “Ron DeSantis might have had a real chance.”

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