Does The CW’s Dynasty Make Sense in 2017?

The CW’s Dynasty trades in its network’s signatures: webs of romance and intrigue, women-driven action, a pinch of racial diversity, and meme-ready savagery. Earlier this month, The CW gave a full season order to Dynasty, while taking the wait and see on Valor. This may seem curious, as one could argue Valor follows the same template, adding garnish to an otherwise standard romance drama by placing its three lovebirds in the military. There may be a nuance of difference between the two shows I’m not registering, and that difference was evidently enough, but I still wonder about the future of Dynasty, given the nature of The CW. … More Does The CW’s Dynasty Make Sense in 2017?

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Xenomorphic Blues: The Future of Alien

Fresh out of the theatre, pushing against the brisk LA night air and the nausea of one unit of popcorn, my mind was abuzz with warm feelings and gruesome images. Alien: Covenant was a rare triumph, a scifi-horror film bleaker than Alien 3 and which actually provided “Horrible Things Pouncing on People.” It began in a characteristically Prometheus way, slow and borderline idiotic, but pivoted into pure monster schlock invaded intermittently by a pesky android. … More Xenomorphic Blues: The Future of Alien

The Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones: A False Equivalence Worth Millions

Earlier this month, it was reported that Amazon acquired TV rights to The Lord of the Rings for an astonishing sum. Still more astonishing however, was the decree under which this deal was closed. Amazon fat cats Price and Bezos specifically cite Preacher, American Gods, and of course, Game of Thrones, as models for globe-shaking, attention-mongering shows with a difference. … More The Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones: A False Equivalence Worth Millions

Our Implicit Bias Holds the Remote

“Implicit bias” is something that comes up here every once in a while; it’s pretty foundational to important things like sexism and racism, and if we say that the first step to defeating your intolerance is understanding it’s there, understanding the possibility that unknown biases could exist is that process revealed. In this video, I’d like to talk about implicit bias, appropriately the B story, while the A story is making a case for Affirmative Action in Hollywood. … More Our Implicit Bias Holds the Remote

Ghost in the Shell, Old and New

On April 7, Production I.G and Kodansha announced yet another big Ghost in the Shell project, an anime to be co-directed by Kenji Kamiyama and Shinji Aramaki. No release date, no further details, so for now, we wait. And in this moment, we can’t in our minds help but connect it narratively to the American remake’s failure, not unlike Toho’s restart of Godzilla in the wake of Godzilla (1998), or even Oshii’s production of Avalon as ‘response’ to that other Ghost in the Shell remake. … More Ghost in the Shell, Old and New

In Defense of Nathaniel | Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Analysis

I love Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, it’s my favorite American TV show since The Wire, at least, but it’s also important to me for a number of reasons. I used to do a podcast that more and more talked about the better tomorrow, and one of the driving takeaways was this notion that media and entertainment was our intermediary from here to, let’s say, utopia. Because if we want utopia, or an egalitarian society, a matriarchal empire, however you want to call it, we need to first imagine it. Put it on paper so we can cross things out and circle things and demystify. That’s what media does, even broadly, it facilitates our imagination. A lot of that work goes on in science-fiction, which was the subject of that podcast. But to my surprise and delight, I found that work going on elsewhere. … More In Defense of Nathaniel | Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Analysis