Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Random Thoughts

:: I saw an article that announced Disney is working on a new version of The Muppet Show. And I'm a little sad that instead of getting excited about it, I just cynically thought "People on the internet are just going to complain about it no matter what the quality is." Sigh. The internet has ruined me. (I'm probably going to do a list, though, of fantasy Muppet Show hosts, though.)

:: Quick aside: are we ever going to just drop the -ugh on though? Seems like something that'll happen anyway as the language evolves. Also on through. When does it just become thru?

:: Mitt Romney went into a store on a campaign stop on Father's Day in Quakerstown, Pennsylvania, and was utterly amazed and fascinated by touchscreen technology. If he thinks that's amazing, wait until he finds out about voice activation. And motion control. This reminds me of the time when George W. Bush was completely mystified by a grocery store scanner. Real men of the people, these guys. Real easy to relate to.

:: Speaking of the Right, what was this whole controversy about with the Bush head in Game of Thrones? First I heard that the creators of the show joked on the commentary that a prop head looked like George W. Bush, and then everyone started saying it was a head of George W. Bush, and then Republicans got their oh-so-easily-bruised feelings hurt and started saying this was awful and blah blah blah and now they digitally altered it to this:
Thank Christ our national nightmare is over and now we can all let the healing begin! Come on, guys, stop making fun of Republicans! They're people, too, with thoughts (presumably) and feelings (it is claimed). What, just because they want to make life harder for women and minorities and immigrants and anyone who isn't a rich white male we have to treat them like monsters?

:: I guess the ACLU and the UN are talking about whether targeted drone strikes could be considered war crimes. They certainly do seem to be in violation of international law.

:: There's also a debate over whether the FDA should label genetically modified food. I don't even know what the debate is, honestly. Is this something that needs discussion? Of course it should be labeled. Everything on food should be labeled. I'm not one of those people protesting genetic modifications as "playing god" or some other science panic, but I think people have a right to know exactly where their food comes from and what's been done to it. I mean, we label things for nut allergies. This is the same thing. If people aren't comfortable eating it, they shouldn't have to.

:: It really bugs me when people write Spider-Man as Spiderman.

:: If Aaron Sorkin wrote The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

:: I like Rowan Kaiser's recaps of Veronica Mars and Babylon 5 on the AV Club website just fine, but it is possible to go a full entry without having to mention Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Firefly. There's always the assumption online that BTVS is the high water mark of all television achievement, but some of us just think it was ridiculous and don't understand what you're referencing when you say that x episode of Veronica Mars is like X episode of Buffy. Seriously, both shows are about spunky little blondes, but that's about it. I don't have that same touchstone because I think Buffy sucks; I'd rather see you take it on its own merits.

:: There's a general outcry on Tumblr about CBS's upcoming Sherlock Holmes series Elementary. All of the Sherlock fans have gone off on a tear about how Elementary is just a rip-off and Sherlock is more faithful to Doyle and ABC have made Watson a woman to head off any of the gay internet shipping. And now there are people writing passionate defenses of Elementary and talking about how bad and unfaithful Sherlock is and how there have always been versions of Sherlock Holmes so obviously one has nothing to do with the other.

I have a couple of things to say here. First off, Elementary is only happening because Sherlock is so popular. Yes, there have always been TV and film versions of Sherlock Holmes, but it's not like someone at CBS magically got the idea to do a modern cop show version of Holmes all on his own. Sure, it's not a proprietary idea, but come on, you really think this just happened to occur at the same time? This is how TV gets made: one thing gets popular attention and other people do that thing. I'm not saying Elementary can't possibly be good because of it, I'm just saying it's probable that the success of one makes the other happen. The character's in the public domain, so why not?

Second, I don't think Sherlock is necessarily faithful to Doyle and I don't think it has to be. It seems in the spirit of Doyle to me; the characters are recognizably the characters from Doyle, though Lestrade seems a little more capable. It's an update, the characters are updated. They've really been nitpicking at this on Tumblr, and it's really annoying to see.

Third, Watson is clearly a woman in Elementary for three reasons. A, to head off teh gay. B, because that's the kind of thing that passes for creativity nowadays, to make a male character a woman for no real reason except different! And C, to open up the possibility of a hackneyed will-they-or-won't-they chemistry, because this is American TV and that's really all American TV has. I think the show Elementary is ripping off is more likely going to be Castle.

But fourth--and this is my real point, here--writing impassioned defenses of a show you haven't even watched yet is just really fucking stupid and annoying.

(Correction: I originally said Elementary was an ABC show, which is incorrect. Of course, because ABC already has Castle... The pitfalls of reactionary writing.)

Wait, so God loves you based on what cookie you eat? That doesn't sound very unconditional to me...

Dude, Oreo special editions taste the best because they're always so fresh and new. You are missing out on the best cheap cookies life has to offer because you can't see past your hate and discomfort. You're going to miss so many cool things. Hope your hate brings you the comfort you so desperately crave.


Matt said...

See also this list of products and brands you also have to boycott if you're serious about boycotting Oreo: http://i.imgur.com/5rexv.jpg

Tallulah Morehead said...

Elementary is a completely new and original idea that someone got while going through (I'm sorry, "thru") Stephen Moffett's rubbish bin.

Law & Order: Baker Street Division.

Tallulah Morehead said...

"it's not like someone at ABC magically got the idea to do a modern cop show version of Holmes all on his own"

In fact, no one at ABC got the idea at all. It's on CBS.

Sherlock Holmes on CBS is being played by Jonny Lee Miller. Last year he and Benedict Cumberbatch were jointly awarded the Olivier Award for Best Actor (The English Tony Award) for alternating the roles of the monster and Dr. Frankenstein each night in a new stage version of Frankenstein. (The night I saw it, Miller played Dr. Frankenstein and Cumberbatch played the monster.)

But I'm sure that someone at CBS did not just say "Get me the actor closest to This Cucumberpatch guy we can find."

Benedict had to share his award with Miller,, but that doesn't eman he wants to share ALL his roles with Miller.

SamuraiFrog said...

Matt: Thanks for that link!

Tallulah: Thanks for the correction; the last impassioned defense I saw did actually mention ABC, so that makes me laugh a little bit, both at that person and myself. Personally I'm not so interested in Elementary, but I just don't get so interested in American procedurals. (I only started watching Castle because I like Nathan Fillion, and this is the first of his series I've ever enjoyed.)

Tallulah Morehead said...

I am a lifelong major Sherlockian, so all things Sherlock Holmes interest me, and when they do it badly, like the wretched Robert Downey Jr movies, I go ballastic, but I also watch them.

SamuraiFrog said...

I saw that first one and just hated it, so I've been put off of seeing the second one, but curiosity still kind of nags at me...

Tallulah Morehead said...

Guy Ritchie failed to grasp the difference between Sherlock Holmes and Indiana Jones. Mind you, it would have been a sucky Indiana Jones movie too.