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Monday, July 02, 2007

Sentential Links #104

Wow. One hundred four: that means I've been doing this feature for a little over two years now. It seems so long ago that I can barely remember, those wonderful old days of yore 2005...actually, 2005 kinda blew, if I remember it right. Total crap of a year.

Er, anyway:

:: By the way, my favorite character in ASOIAF is in fact Jaime Lannister. (Mine too, I must admit, over the last couple of books. I also like Brienne, and I wish that her storyline in the most recent book had amounted to more than her just wandering around. Still, she seems to be in a heck of a pickle at the end, there.)

:: It's Peter's birthday today, which means it's 'steak and blowjob night' here in Lockport. (OK, it's a bit risque, but I couldn't not link it!)

:: We live in a world that gives such awful distorted messages about what it means to win, to get it right, to succeed. I think there is tremendous value in standing apart from all the emphasis on shiny things or popularity or a specific body fat ratio to simply allow ourselves to be present to all that is good, all that is possible, all that is worthy in this world.

:: What you get with this series are Shakespearean plots moved to imagined worlds consistent with the manga form -- hence Hamlet in a dystopian future and Romeo and Juliet set "in the highly fashionable Shibuya district of Tokyo" where Romeo (a rock star, naturally) and his love are "caught up in a bitter feud between two Yakuza families." (An older post, but I just saw it. Do these manga versions of Shakespeare contain the entire text of the plays, or are they "condensed"? If the former, I'd check one of these out.)

:: So, in short, the things that (IMO) made Firefly bad sci fi were: too much sex, not balancing sex with other aspects of human relationships, failure to address the classic problems of the genre (such as FTL travel and terraforming), too much preachiness (for gay rights and for a "naturalistic" worldview, ie atheism), and clumsy treatment of the role of religion in human interactions and the big unanswerable questions. There were a lot of other things I didn't like about Firefly in general, but these here were the big things that mad it a poor piece of sci fi. (I'll agree that Firefly isn't terribly good SF -- not that that stops it from being a really good show -- but certainly not on the basis that it's just too sexy. Via.)

:: I used to love war movies. In part, because they were so darned…reliable. (A new blog, just launched recently. Don't remember where I found it.)

:: A new, smallish school, a Yeshiva, sits on an inconspicuous street in a residential neighborhood. Nervously, a man drives up, about twenty minutes before his appointment. He woke up thinking sad thoughts, thoughts about what ought to have been, but what never could be. (If you read somewhere in Blogistan this week a sadder post than this one, don't tell me. I'm in a sensitive way these days, and it might well do me in.)

:: As I see it, artists are vessels who constantly pour out impressions and expressions. We have to make sure that we fill ourselves up again, otherwise we may be left with little to say. (Not unlike a sentiment once expressed by Lester Bangs. This is the only blog I know of that comes with its own soundtrack, by the way -- and I've been remiss in not publicly thanking Alex Shapiro for some unexpected generosity a month or so ago, when my world decided to implode yet again. Thanks to her. Immensely.)

All for this week.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

First of all, Firefly didn't have much chance to be "good sci-fi". Just 14 episodes. A lot might have happened in the next 14 episodes but we'll never know. Second Firefly WAS good sci-fi. Being different - not like all the rest - is one reason that it was good sci-fi. Too much sex? A matter of opinion. Different people have different tolerance levels. I thought it was reasonably well balanced with other aspects of human relationships. Failure to address the classic problems of the genre? Like I said, not being like all the rest was a plus, not a minus and they might have eventually gotten around to some of that, especially terraforming, if the show had lasted longer. Clumsy treatment of the role of religion? Please! I think they did much better at that than Star Trek ever did. Maybe Star Trek isn't a real good example but I can't think of any other sci-fi TV show that has done any better.

I guess this is getting too long for comments but.... GRRRR... so few people really get Firefly.