brainwane: My smiling face in front of a brick wall, May 2015. (Default)
[personal profile] brainwane
Every ... year? or so, Leonard and I find an offer for a free month of Netflix and take it, and watch a chunk of Netflix-only stuff, then cancel. For instance, we did this when Season 4 of Arrested Development came out.

Evidently a bunch of other folks have caught on that the current White House bears a strong resemblance to the Bluth family. In particular: "'House of Cards w/ the characters of Arrested Development' is th most accurate description of our current political situation i've ever seen".* And indeed I am also catching up now on House of Cards (I'm a few episodes through Season 4), which I find is just as escapist now as The West Wing was during the Bush 2000s. As Jonathan Sterne pointed out in July 2001, The West Wing was Star Trek in the White House: beyond The West Wing's "kind of wish fulfillment, where the people at the top of the executive branch actually believe in what they're doing and work on principle", The West Wing also, like Star Trek, is "stories about the ambitions of the professional-managerial class". Well, I guess I feel about House of Cards now as Leonard felt about Dave (1993) when watching it in 2007 ("Well, this president sure is a jerk, and he cheats on his wife, but at least he didn't start a disastrous war or have people tortured."). In its fantasy of competent governance and, you know, "hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue" and so on, House of Cards has really achieved the effect of "Slytherin West Wing" in at least one viewer (me).

Anyway, so, I just watched several episodes that have dream sequences that bored me, and now I'm asking myself what it is about dream sequences and monologues that makes it easy for me to label them "self-indulgent". Maybe it's because I can imagine myself as the writer, banging out a scene and loving it more as an expression of my own fantasy than as an integrated and effective component of the communicative act. Maybe it's a genre/medium expectation that I should reexamine. Anyway, reflecting.

Leonard does not watch House of Cards; he is watching the new Mystery Science Theater 3000 which I tried a little of. Those of you who enjoy MST3K: what proportion of the jokes (during the movie) do you find funny? Leonard has a whole taxonomy of MST3K jokes and I wonder whether it is really as hard to find good observational/commentary jokes, 3 times a minute for the length of a bad movie, as he seems to think. I guess I could try it myself and see I DO NOT NEED MORE PROJECTS I REJECT THIS EXPERIMENT GET OUT OF MY HEAD

* If you look back you'll see further and deeper Arrested Development comparisons going back several months, e.g., from mid-November, "2016 is the worst Arrested Development/House of Cards crossover fanfic I've ever had to live through". Oh, and for fun: "America right now is what you'd get if Dan Brown tried to write a Le Carré novel."
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brainwane: My smiling face in front of a brick wall, May 2015. (Default)
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