31 Days of Halloween: Dead Alive — We Minored in Film

This October, we’re challenging ourselves to watch at least one horror movie a day. Today we took our first request and revisited a film one reader asked us to weigh in on because, really, once you’ve seen Dead Alive you just have to talk about it. It’s easy to forget now, but Peter Jackson once trafficked […]

via 31 Days of Halloween: Dead Alive — We Minored in Film

The Bloggers at We Minored in Film are on an ambitious project, Reviewing 31 Horror Movies in 31 Days. I asked them if they would review one of Peter Jackson’s earliest movies for me, and they did such a great job, that I’m posting it here! Please visit there blog to see the other 20 or so films they’ve reviewed. I’m sure you’ll come across some favorites.

Thanks guys!

Advertisements

Many Resisters Don’t Want Change; They Want to Get Back to Brunch

Throughout history, photographs have captured the emotion and message of movements or pivotal times in history. Many of us can recall seeing images that spoke to the times with many of the photographs moving, inspiring, challenging, angering or calling us to action. I can still recall the emotion I felt seeing former President Barack Obama…

via Many Resisters Don’t Want Change; They Want to Get Back to Brunch — WriteSomeShit

I had to reblog this because this is exactly my faith level when it comes to White women in the US. I don’t have any. Not one ounce. My faith in them was never very high in the first place, but its pretty much at 0%  , and has been since the election.

Don’t spin this to mean I hate White women, or dislike them. I can smile and laugh with them about their favorite TV show, or a nice purse they just bought, but I don’t trust them when it comes to political or social issues, unless they are walking the walk as much as they are talking  the talk. And I have seen very little walking from many of them, although running they’re mouths seem to be a great hobby for some of them. The same thing goes for intersectionalism feminism, and the #MeToo movement. Many of them are just talking the talk because they want to be seen to be doing it, not because they care.

What I’ve Been Watching: Mini-Reviews Of Dr. Who And Others

TV

Dr Who

I’m hooked! I know I’ve stated that I do not consider myself a Whovian because I’m not as steeped in the history of the show as some other more knowledgeable people might be, but I’ve always liked the show, and watched specific episodes when I was a kid in the 70s. I remember the Daleks from back then, and I know most of the villains on the series, and am familiar with a lot of the Doctors and their companions. I’m not steeped in minute details, but I know enough to navigate my way around a season.

In season 9 I started watching the show in earnest, because of the presence of Peter Capaldi, of whom I’m a big fan. I really loved him as the Doctor and I loved his new companion Bill Potts, and I was sorry to see them both gone.

I didnt actually know what to think of Jodi as the new Doctor at first. I was reserving my opinion on the entire issue until I saw some trailers or something, but after I saw the first trailer, I was intrigued, and I’ve seen her interviews about her new role, and her love and enthusiasm really captured me. I really like the actress herself. She so captures that sense of the Doctor. In fact, she reminds me of one of my other favorite Doctors, David Tennant whose career I’ve been following ever since. The first time I saw Jodi was in Grabbers, playing a drunken cop, and killing aliens, and I liked her in that movie, so when it was announced she’d be the new Doctor, I wasn’t upset, because I kinda knew of her.

Well, I watched the first episode and she is a darling . I really like her and I plan to watch the rest of the season. Now don’t get me wrong, the show isnt perfect, and did some things I found frustrating, but not frustrating enough to stop watching it, or lose interest, and overall, I really enjoyed myself. Some parts of it were a little heavy handed, and it remains to be seen how her companions, three at the moment, two of them PoC, will be treated by the writers. I have it on good authority that there are PoC in the writers room  for the very first time, so I feel optimistic about it.

Her new companions are a Black fellow named Ryan,and  his White stepfather, Graham (which is a dynamic I hope will be elaborated on in the future as their relationship is not an easy one), and a young Asian woman named Yasmin, who is/was a minor detective with the police. I like the relationship between Yasmin and Ryan as they are old grade school chums.

As for the Dr., she is her usual obnoxiously intelligent self, but with that little something extra that only Jodi could have brought to the role and something which all the actors who have played the Dr. were chosen for, their unique take on the character. It doesn’t hurt that she’s as nice to look at as any of the other Doctors like Tennant or Capaldi. I love her usual  know-it-all enthusiasm, which can get a bit grating after more than a little bit of it, but that’s okay, because the doctor usually prevails, and that’s also part of the reason I like this show so much.

So I guess this actually does make me a fan, huh?

Supernatural

I’m cautiously excited, and yet dreading, the rest of the season, because I care  so much about all  these characters, and know they’re in for a hard road, and some of them ain’t gonna make it out alive. Well, I’m in it til the end, so there. I’ll give a more detailed review at my other website and link it to this one. But I  really liked the premiere, and I’m going to give it a pretty high rating, and hope the rest of the season continues at that same level.

Charmed

I’ve been trying to drum up some enthusiasm for this show, but it’s been hard. I’m not a fan of the original show. In fact, I pretty much hated it, and that might have something to do with this retread. I don’t dislike this show. It’s only been one episode but I have a couple of objections.

I was really hoping, since the characters are meant to be Latina, that there would be some introduction of Brujeria magic into the show. Instead what we got was more of the European stuff, with Latin, and sparkly lights. It would have been a great idea to introduce Hispanic/Latinx cultural traditions into the show, and I would have liked to have seen that. I’m also against remaking old shows with Brown characters. Just give us a new show with a new name, maybe even the same characters, but an original show.

Now the show isn’t actually bad. One of the minor concepts in the premiere was the issue of sexual assault on campus. There’s a background story about one of the Professors being exonerated of sexual assault charges, who later turns out to be a demon who feeds on women’s strength. I thought that was neat little dovetail connecting the two issues, although occasionally heavy handed.

My biggest issue was the acting and the actresses. I’ve never seen two of them in anything, so I don’t know them, but they need a little work on their skills. And the youngest sister is one of those annoying narcissistic teenagers who doesn’t want to be special because it will ruin her chances to pledge with a sorority. The middle sister is a Lesbian with anger issues. Normally I’d have a problem with that but the writers try to be subtle about it,and it’s implied that the anger is a result of her coping with her mothers death, so this gets a pass. She’s the most intriguing character becasue I don’t know her as much about her, whereas with the younger sister, you feel like you know all you need to know about her.

I did like Mantocks older sister though because I understood her, and she’s just a better actress than the other two. Remember Mantock from Into the Badlands, so she’s got a great deal of experience p,and I liked her on that show. She shows up at the house after the girls mother dies and she’s lonely, and looking for a family. At first the two sisters reject her, and I kinda felt for her on that, but eventually they accept her, and try to bond with her. Mantocks acting is top notch. She almost brought me to tears a coupe of times. She’s also a scientist, which is something that plays out in an interesting way in the show. I liked that the writers combined some of her scientific knowledge with the magic,and it’s also really rare to see Brown women in STEM, so I’m all for it.

I feel like the writers need to spend time fleshing out their characters more, which they will of the show lasts beyond season one. The baby girl seems like she’s the comedy relief, and she can hear peoples thoughts. The middle girl seems to be the hearts and feelings one. She can stop time. The oldest played by Mantock is the brainy, logical one. I forget what her unique gift is though, so now I need to watch it for that.

Well, I don’t hate it, but I don’t dislike it either, and sometimes it takes time for me to determine if I liked something. I’m leaning in the direction of I Cautiously Like It. I’m not in love with it, but there’s the possibility of love, maybe.

Black Lightning

This is another show I’m invested in. I enjoy these characters, and want the best for them and like the dynamics between them. I’m a little tired of Tobias Whale as a villain and hope the season moves on from him, but I get why he’s present. There were a number of unexpected plot turns in the season premiere, so I’m looking forward to how the season turns out. I continue to be impressed by Anissa and even Jennifer. Yes, she’s still a  bratty teen who doesn’t want superpowers, but circumstances will force her to face her issues, whether she likes it or not, so I’m interested in what happens to her.

I didn’t see Siren’s (Tobias henchwoman’s) death coming. She was less likable than Tobias, so I’m not too broken up about her being killed by a sharpened stiletto through the throat. Incidentally, Anissa’s fight scenes are definitely the shit. I love to watch her put her thing down. She’s less conservative than her father. She’s a lot more of a maverick, and it shows in her fighting style, and I like that. When told that she can’t do something, she manages to find a workaround.

Jennifer is losing control of her powers, but that statement implies she was in control of them in the first place. She mostly tried to deny having them. At one point she has to be rescued by her father, when she can’t turn off her abilities. When she’s manifesting, he’s the only one who can make physical contact with her without dying, and from the looks of it, it’s still pretty painful for him. I mentioned to my Mom that in the comic books, she’s basically a sentient  bolt of lightning (or at least that’s how she’s drawn, and that her sleep/ floating is an indication of her flight powers manifesting.)

Lynn is her usual beautiful self. My mom and I had an interesting discussion about Lynn’s statement that Jennifer needed therapy. My mom thinks that’s a crock. What’s a therapist gonna do? But she feels that way about a lot of therapists. Some things she thinks talking about doesnt help at all, but I think Jennifer has been going through some major traumatic events outside of having superpowers, and needs to talk to someone who’s not her dad or sister.

Jefferson outed himself, and Anissa, to the Police commissioner. I didn’t see that coming, and I wonder what that means for their future endeavors as vigilantes. Is it gonna be like a Gotham city Batman type thing, where he quietly calls on Black Lightning to help him out from time to time, or will it be  a Dark Knight thing, where he has to pretend to want to catch him?

The show started off with a young Black man being killed by the police for having superpowers. This event is tied into the Black Lives Matter movement very neatly by a preacher on the show who says that the police are using the presence of superpowers to terrorize and kill young Black men. Now that’s how you do a racism allegory, by tying the fantasy aspect into the actual real life oppression of a marginalized group, and showing how that would affect that group. I talked about how I’m not a fan of racist allegories that don’t include any members of the group that the allegory was appropriated from. Here, it’s been done correctly, in a way I stated I would like to see in a sci fi fantasy show. And since it involves superpowers, this is done in such a way that I don’t too caught up in my feelings about police brutality. There’s a bit of an intellectual remove. If children from marginalized communities were suddenly developing superpowers, how would that affect how they’re treated by the dominant culture, and  their community. How would they react? It seems like the show will be addressing some of this. I hope they elaborate on it a bit more.

I loved the music for the show, too. I think Anissa’s fight scenes get some of the best music and its usually a reflection of her youth and general attitude. Jefferson’s music tends to be a bit more old school R&B, with some Jazz thrown in.

So, yeah, I’m definitely invested. Hopefully, the show will continue at this same high level for the rest of the season.

The Walking Dead

I’m watching it. Things seem okay. It certainly seems less depressing than previous seasons. I understand that this is Rick’s last season on the show, so I’m curious as to what is gonna happen to him and Michonne, and if the show can survive without him. I think it can. The show has built up the other characters enough that it would still be an emotionally compelling show without him.

I’m not a huge fan of intrigue and political gaming shows, though. It’s one of the major aspects that I dislike about Game of Thrones because I’m not interested in watching people fight with each other over who gets to be in charge, and I don’t want to see Game of Thrones during the Apocalypse, which is what this seems to be becoming, as Maggie and the others scheme to …well, I’m not sure what they’re scheming, but it feels bad though. I like these characters, and don’t want to watch them fight each other for power, although I’m always here for watching Michonne beaning somebody over the head when they start acting a fool.

I’m curious about the outcome of this season, but I’m kinda burnt out on the show, as a result I’m less enthused about it then I have been in the past. I’m pretty sure some of that lack of enthusiasm was caused by the death of Glenn, who I really, really miss. The show hasn’t felt right since his death. Without him, the past two seasons have just felt pointless, and depressing, in a way it didn’t when he was on the show. I’m not entirely done with the show, but I’m not making the huge emotional investment that I did in the past.

Also, part of the reason I’m reluctant to become as emotionally involved in the show is that I’m too damn tired to do it. Things are so batshit right now in this country, that I’ve quite used up all my emotions, and don’t have any to spare for a TV show like this. If it were a more intellectual series, than maybe I could, but this show is not Westworld, a show which requires less emotional investment, only a mostly intellectual one. This is actually a pretty draining show, which is part of the reason why I stopped reviewing it.

Well, I can always keep abreast of the show through the Talking Dead show which airs right after. I’m not a fan of the host of the show, since he tries too hard to be funny, but the guests discuss their characters and the plot in depth, and I can get an idea of what’s going on without having to sit through an entire episode.

Mr. Mercedes

This series is based on the trilogy by Stephen King, which I really enjoyed. The first season was based on the first book, about a serial killer, named Brady who plays cat and mouse games with the retired cop, Hodges, who assigned himself to capture him. He’s accompanied by a young black kid, named Jerome, his love interest/neighbor Donna, and a young woman on the autism spectrum named Holly. (Hint: I’m a huge fan of Holly.) The first season, and the book, ended with Brady in a coma, being kept in a special hospital.

The new season skips over the second book, which doesn’t have a whole lot to do with Brady, and skips to the third book in the series, called End of Watch, and chronicles Brady’s mental superpowers that result from his doctors experiments with drugs, and Brady using those powers to target the people who put him in his condition.

Since I didn’t finish the first season of the show, I missed out on the fact that there are a lot of PoC in this show. Sure Hodges is the center of it but not completely. The other characters get major screen time and are shown to have lives and family outside of Hodges. Especially Jerome, whose father is going through some financial issues, while his little sister seems to be going through some emotional ones. I already like Jerome, but his family members didn’t make a good impression on me because the plot requires them to be assholes to Jerome, and I didn’t care for that.

I’m going to stick around for a bit and see if what happens on the show lines up with what happens in the book, which I think was the best book in the trilogy.

Mr. Inbetween

I’m not a huge fan of shows which sympathize and humanize incredibly violent men but this show is intriguing because it does some unexpected things with the characters and I liked the mood of it. The show is out of Australia and that may have something to do with the approach which, while kind of light at times, is not played for comedy. The humor arises out of the dialogue and decisions characters make on the show. The violence is not played for laughs.

The lead character is named Ray, a hitman, and an ex-con, who gets into various misadventures while trying to juggle his relationships with his loved ones, and attend anger management classes. The most poignant relationship is with his young daughter, who is really cute, and so far as I’ve seen, does not exist to be put in danger, and his relationship with a young woman he just met. The show is unremarkable beyond the acting and dialogue. The plot consist of Ray getting into and solving crazy situations while being harangued by whatever criminal employers he’s with that week, while sorta keeping things secret from his family. The Typical “hitman as lovable rogue” type plots really.

Marvel’s ‘Iron Fist’ Cancelled by Netflix — WE ARE GEEKS OF COLOR

That’s right guys, Netflix has officially given the ax to one of their Marvel-based series’, Iron Fist. It is currently unclear how this decision to cancel the show will affect Marvel’s Defenders, a series which involves an entangled plot line with Luke Cage, Daredevil, and Jessica Jones, along with the characters and plot lines of Iron Fist. In a joint […]

via Marvel’s ‘Iron Fist’ Cancelled by Netflix — WE ARE GEEKS OF COLOR

Bon Voyage, Sayonara, So Long!

I’m not too broken up about this, despite the fact that I was kind of liking the second season of this show. It’s much better than the first, but its still not great. What I’m hoping is that these are characters that can be integrated into other shows, like Luke Cage with Iron Fist, because these two characters  just work better together than they do as individuals, and The Defenders.

Its apparent that we’re gonna be stuck with a White Danny Rand, even though the comic books do leave room for there to be different Iron Fists ,as that is a title and not a name of a person. I would love to see the title pass on to a new person at some point, then maybe we can get that Asian Iron Fist we were asking for. That would be nice, even if it was just for a little while.

I’d also like to see that Daughters of the Dragon spinoff that we’ve all been clamoring for because that would be awesome. Misty and Colleen have great chemistry together, and now that Colleen is no longer with Danny, this would be the perfect time for it, especially if we could get a female showrunner. (I will accept Lucy Liu anytime.)

Unexpected Hiatus

Hey there!

I know I haven’t posted in about a week. My internet was down at home, and I’ve been on medical leave from work, so I’m sorry to say I got nothing for you guys for this weekend. But I’m working on some interesting stuff, more on my season three Hannibal rewatch, a couple of horror movie essays, some show premiere mini-reviews, and more Halloween related stufflum (that’s the words “flotsam” and “stuff” mixed together).

It’s cool everybody! We got all month long.

New York Comic Con 2018: all the trailers from NYCC

From The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina to Aquaman to She-Ra and the Princesses of Power.
— Read on www.vox.com/2018/10/6/17942870/new-york-comic-con-2018-trailers-movies-tv-nycc-full-list

Oh, we’ve got some great stuff showing up in 2019. Later I’ll have a list of books, movies and TV shows I’m most excited for next year, which is creeping ever closer (along with the potential end of my car note! Yay!!!)

My internet access has been very limited this week because our broadband modem decided to act like a fool, but I’ll have some weekend reading for you guys. No, there’s no test, but there will be a surprise quiz in 2023!

Do I need to tell you how excited I am for American Gods? And how terrified I am that the new showrunners are gonna fuck it up and get all the race stuff wrong?

Most Horror Movies Suck — Pop N’ Crunch

Most horror movies suck. This isn’t a result of a new phenomenon, where an over-reliance on jump scares and cheap tricks has lowered the quality of horror movies. No, this is something that has existed since the dawn of the horror genre in film. Now, you might be saying, “There’s plenty of classic horror movies”, […]

via Most Horror Movies Suck — Pop N’ Crunch

I’ve been watching Horror movies about as long as I’ve had eyeballs, and I agree. Most of them are bad. That doesn’t mean I don’t like most of them. Some of them are serviceable and okay films but the number of bad ones outweighs the greats and the classics. I’d argue that a good 75% or more of horror movies are just plain awful.

The Final ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Trailer is Out Now and Action Packed — The Nerds of Color

The trailer for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Crimes of Grindelwald is finally out! Here’s hoping the movie can keep up with all of the plot lines that the trailer packed in. Below is a rundown for a few magical extras in this fantastical sequel. Spoilers start now!

via The Final ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Trailer is Out Now and Action Packed — The Nerds of Color

Okay, this trailer I’m actually excited about!

Comic Books Have Always Been Political

With the releases of Wonder Woman and Black Panther, I couldn’t help but notice quite a few people mentioning that they didn’t like the fact that these movies were “adding” politics to comics. This always bothered me, because anyone who knows anything about comic books (unless they choose to ignore this) knows about how politics have always been […]

via Comic Books Have Always Been Political — Pop N’ Crunch

We Need To Fix This First

theoutline.com/post/5809/the-racist-language-of-space-exploration

I’m a huge cheerleader for NASA, and always have been, but the language we’ve been using to discuss space exploration is unacceptable. It’s basically “Manifest Destiny”, all over again. We’re going to reproduce the exact manner in which we brutally colonized other nations on this planet, take that into outer space, and expect a different result?

What’s also not mentioned in this article is the rapacious nature of capitalism being taken into outer space. All that’s going to do is reproduce the exact same conditions that capitalism has produced here on Earth. What is likely to occur is humanity becomes little better than interplanetary locusts, moving from resource to resource, pillaging one planet until it’s lost it’s use, and moving on to the next one.

We need to get our shit together here before we can make it out in space, and we’ve made no effort to fix ourselves.

Unlike in science fiction novels, it’s not likely that some greater power will come along to nip this shit in the bud. We have to fix this ourselves.

Sacrifice, Heroics, and Dead Characters of Color — Stitch’s Media Mix

This post contains spoilers for Orange is the New Black season 4, Wynonna Earp season 3, Elementary season 6, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 5, and a bunch of other stuff that’s been off the air or out of theaters for years. I knew I was never going to watch Sleepy Hollow again when Nicole Beharie’s […]

via Sacrifice, Heroics, and Dead Characters of Color — Stitch’s Media Mix

This post by Stitch goes into the trope of Fridging of Characters of Color, and The Black Guy Dies First  trope, and the subsequent treatment of those characters by the various fandoms.

I just wanted to add that the corollary to having PoC die to further the narratives of White characters, are the PoC who don’t die for White characters. They just die. Those characters don’t get hashtags or meta written for them. None of the fandom cares.

In The Walking Dead, take a look at how fans treated Glenn’s’ death, and how many of these people actively petitioned that Michonne  should be killed by Negan  to further Rick’s emotional arc.

Just as in the real world, if a PoC isn’t serving the needs of a White person, (whether alive or dead) then their death is expected, sometimes excused, and  often celebrated. In the real world, when a Black person’s death doesn’t serve a White person, White  people will often make up excuses for why that person needed/deserved to be killed, and we can see echoes of that in those fandoms clamoring for the deaths of Iris West \, Scott McCall, and Finn. Just as in the real world, for a PoC, dying is the only way their life can matter to White people.

Next Week Hiatus

I won’t be doing my usual weekend reading post. I’m taking a bit of time off until next week so I can work on my long form posts. I’ve got about 5 or 6 long form posts Ive been working on for the past month, and life (illness) and work (full-time) keeps interrupting my publishing of them.

I have been watching what shows I can, when I can . I watched some episodes of Iron Fist, but was ultimately disappointed, despite actually liking a couple of episodes. I’ll have more on why later. I watched The Mayans, which wasn’t bad, but didn’t hold my interest much. I generally do not watch crime shows involving PoC, and it’s about Mexican bikers, so I kind of knew I wasn’t going to fall in love with it, but I didn’t hate it either. I just watched an episode of some show on HBO, called Random Flyness, which was really, really weird, unabashedly Black, and kinda soothing, like a freeform version of the show Atlanta crossed with an episode of Key and Peele. I want to write about that.

I’m most excited about American Horror Story Apocalypse. I did watch the first episode and I have a lot to say about it. I don’t know that I’ll post a review every week on it but that first episode deserves its own post so I’m starting work on that.

Right now I’m working on a post about landscape as an essential narrative element, and my highly ambitious second and third posts about White Male Pandering in Entertainment, along with a couple of review anthologies where I write about multiple shows.

Since the racist cartoon of Serena Williams was released, and the man who drew it claimed to know so little about a profession in which he fully takes part, I’m thinking of doing a post on the history of racist caricature, to explain exactly why what he did was racist as fuck to anyone who knows anything on the subject, and even a few who don’t. Beyond the drawing itself, I’m livid at the idea that this man claims to know nothing of the history of his craft of political cartooning.

I’m an artist. I’ve been a visual artist since I was a pre-teen. I was considered a talented draftsman, and even won local awards for my skills. I’m no cartoonist but even I know enough about the history of political cartooning that I would know a racist caricature if I drew it. I made it a point to learn about the history of my craft and improve, improve, improve. You cannot improve in your craft if you don’t know the history of it. I’m incensed because the man is being lazy and stupid (or just lying) about what he did. Either reason is equally shameful, and I have something to say about that, not just as a Black woman, who felt incredibly attacked by that image, but as an artist as well. Here are some other people who felt some kind of way about what happened:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/09/11/opinions/racist-serena-cartoon-mark-knight-rebecca-wanzo/index.html

 

This article may sit behind a paywall so be aware. Some of it is about the racial history of Australia, and how these images of Black people have contributed and enabled racism in Australia and the US..

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/global-opinions/wp/2018/09/12/what-the-herald-suns-serena-williams-cartoon-reveals-about-australias-racial-history/

 

Warning: This website is an archive of racist cartoons. I wanted to add this for informational  purposes, for those who haven’t really seen such images before, and you can contrast and compare the image in the Australian newspaper, to the historical caricatures of Black women.

The two articles above reference some of the Australian imagery like “The Golliwog”, and the Jim Crow Museum has images of this doll on the site. It also discusses the racial history of Australia, and why and how the doll was created.

There is also a drop down menu under The Museum, which goes into the details behind many of the images, what the various images are called, and the history of their creation, like The Mammy, The Jezebel, and the Black Brute.

https://ferris.edu/jimcrow/cartoons/

 

 

TA Ta until next week.