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Some of my favorite Twitter followers are authors, so I've heard a LOT about this. I can't believe someone thought publishing this book was a good idea.
A couple thoughts: 1. FINAL FRONTIER is not a good film, but there's a lot more in it that's good than is commonly believed, and more than that, it was ambitious. It really tried to be and say something that the previous films had not, so I am kinder with my judgment of it than most. I consider it a "noble failure" of sorts. 2. THE MOTION PICTURE is absolutely a STAR TREK movie. In fact, from a certain point of view, it's one of the few real STAR TREK movies. It's certainly the most faithful to Gene Roddenberry's notion of the future. 3. The movies had to be successful because of the TV show...AND on their own terms. It was an odd time for TREK, in the 1980s, when the movies were the only game in town and each one only got greenlit on the basis of the financial success of the one before it. But the movies kept TREK visible and relevant; I seriously doubt that TNG would ever have happened if there hadn't been a franchise of four successful films leading into it. 4. I'm also softer on JJ Abrams than you are, but not by much -- not the films, anyway. I actually don't mind Abrams's direction; there's totally room in TREK for slam-bang adventure stories, and I love the cast he's assembled. His writers, though, really irritate the hell out of me and I'm glad they're not on the next one. We'll see.
I think your friend is wrong about that pass play. First of all, the formation the Patriots were in for that play (four down linemen and a single linebacker playing too deep in the end zone) would have greatly favored a power run with only a single yard needed for the TD. Second of all, even IF calling a pass is defensible -- a big 'if', given the afore-mentioned blocking scheme -- the specific play the called is not. They didn't even attempt a play-fake of any kind to freeze up defenders or sucker them in the wrong direction; at the snap that Butler guy was able to quickly see that it was a pass which let him jump the pass route. It wasn't a fluke caused by a defender being someplace unexpected; it was a coaching blunder. And the Patriots are evil and must be destroyed. :)
WEST WING was my favorite show on teevee for the first, oh, 2.5 seasons, but as the MS storyline started winding down, I started sensing the preachiness of it all. The MS tale was clearly Aaron Sorkin telling us all how the Clinton impeachment should have been handled, and then the show got pretty boring as Sorkin lurched from one issue to dramatize to another. It was pretty obvious as he went along that he was sticking real-world issues into his show and then filing off the serial numbers to make them fit; imagine my surprise when years later he would just keep the issues the same and shove fictional characters into them for THE NEWSROOM. I've also developed something of a love-hate relationship with Sorkin over the years since his run on TWW started petering out (anyone who says that all four seasons of his on TWW were great is delusional), and I've even started suspecting that he's a hack with some very real gifts. His ability to pace a story and time the emotional beats for maximum effect is very real, but his oft-praised dialog is deeply problematic for me. I found, watching a lot of his stuff, that the more of it I saw, the more I get this constant sense that I've "seen this movie before", as the saying goes. Entire lines of dialog repeated verbatim from one show or movie to the next. Conversational beats that never change each time he repeats them. Dramatic situations repeated as well. Jokes the make no sense given the background of the characters, or plot points that rely on an intelligent character suddenly becoming, for the moment, deeply stupid. I started suspecting that Sorkin's Emperor had no clothes during STUDIO 60, and seeing more of his work since, I find that WEST WING retroactively suffers for it. On the show's politics, when I rewatched a lot of it some years ago, I was struck at how infrequently the liberal argument actually carries the day on the show. For a show that's so often viewed as "liberal wish-fulfillment fantasy", the conservative argument very often wins out, while the liberal one is depicted as either something "the nation's just not ready for yet" or a "In a perfect world..." kind of thing. Liberalism is rarely depicted in TWW as something real and possible, in terms of actual policy. I found that kind of annoying, and ultimately, I actually found myself enjoying the show's last two (non-Sorkin) seasons a lot more than Sorkin's own final year-and-a-half. (Season Five is a mixed bag with some terrific episodes and some dull ones.) I've gone on long enough, so I won't rant on Sorkin's tendency to casual sexism.
Toggle Commented Feb 1, 2015 on The West Wing revisited at Lance Mannion
I don't know about the short movie, but I do know that I'll never buy a Keurig. Why get a fancy machine to take up counter space so it can do the same job that a $5 brew basket and a tea kettle can do?
Toggle Commented Feb 1, 2015 on Kill the K-cup! at Lance Mannion
I love these movies, wholeheartedly. I really do. They're awesome and even if the THOR flicks weren't part of the Marvelverse, I'd love them. And you know what? Maybe it's just my unhealthy infatuation with Kat Dennings (who will, heartbreakingly, be too old to play the lead in the TOTALLY INEVITABLE screen adaptation of my book), but I think Darcy is a terrific character. I love how the films -- both of them, now -- manage to make the crucial distinction between competence in the world she's entered and intelligence. She's goofy, and she's woefully unprepared for the type of work she's doing, but she's not stupid, by any means. Anyway, I loved this movie to pieces.
That second link appears to be buggered.
Interesting self-description of Libertariansm by Den Mother there. It's a nice softening of the idea, but in my experience -- and I've interacted with many, many self-described Libertarians -- they never, ever, ever admit the existence of a single thing that actually really truly does fall into any or all of those three categories (with the possible exception of national defense). It all sounds very calm and rational, until every single Libertarian argues that every single thing can be best handled by individuals or "the market". And frankly, push to shove, many Libertarians will, if pushed far enough, end up arguing that "the market" and "individualism" are SO SACRED in themselves that even IF they grant that individuals or "the market" can't do something as well as government, we shouldn't have government do them anyway. Libertarians are, to me, about as interesting as people I know who get angry if you describe them as Republicans, insisting on their "independence", and yet when I press them on their voting behavior, they literally cannot name the last Democrat they ever voted for.
We live in Syracuse from September 2002 to April 2003. The morning we moved was the morning after the Orange won the NCAA Tournament, so for about ten hours, we lived in a championship city. I saw a lot of things I liked about Syracuse, but I was never sure that I actually LIKED it. For one thing, I was unemployed and our daughter was 3, so for all that time I had almost no adult interaction with anybody. And I never really got a feel for Syracuse as a place. My sense is that Syracuse wasn't really for us...but it didn't get much chance to be, did it?
Ahh, I was wondering if you got to see the pie video or not. It was a ton of fun, as always! Thanks! :)
Wow! What a wonderful flower. I love roses!
From what I'm reading, I wonder if Obama didn't just say to himself, "As long as I don't shit my pants on live teevee, this thing's not really gonna matter much." Especially since the media seemed to really be pushing itself into declaring Romney the 'winner' before the damned thing even took place. (And what the f*** is 'winning a debate', anyway? And how have we become a country where you can 'win' a debate whilst being factually incorrect all over the place, whether intentionally or not? If Romney had been arguing charmingly that the Earth is flat, and Obama had been sleepily intoning that it's actually a sphere, how can the 'style points' add up to the dumb-ass 'winning'? I'm really coming to HATE HATE HATE our narrative-driven media landscape.)
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Oct 4, 2012