Just some thoughts derived from viewing and participating in the antisocial media:
* In the responses to any given post you make, or in any interweb discussion, or even in any real-life meeting of any kind, there’s always One. ++ And unless you are that ‘One’, you know exactly what I mean.
(++ One = at least One)
* For the well-meaning knothead, I think just about everyone has a handle on how it’s not that healthy to eat fast food all the time. Safe to assume that the need for posting and reposting every supposed horror story and pic on this topic now less than critical.
* Ditto on cruelty to animals being a bad thing. Got that one handled. Most people are using that kind of platform to catch up with friends. Not quite sure of the pressing need to have pics of dismembered orangutan, gouged otters, and abused chickens thrown into the middle of everything. Presumably those responsible, when they’re hosting some sort of social gathering, would have no problem with someone hurling a brace of violated goats on to the main table adjacent to the ice sculptures.
* I like cats, dogs, and young children, but I could learn to like them less. Or to put it a slightly different way, I get that some people derive tremendous entertainment from their kids and pets, but so do I re W.C. Fields movies, and I don’t insist on automatically forcing everyone I meet into a chair and making them look at those.
* If you’re wondering what the statistical demarcation line is regarding spending too much time on the antisocial media, I increasingly tend to the opinion that the answer can be expressed mathematically, via, the conventional alpha-numeric system as: “Any”.
I was just reading what passes as a modern day ‘TV review’.
It remarked something along the lines that the show was possessed of inadequate spark, and that the laughs were too infrequent.
Yes, one senses the latter might represent a problem for a comedy show, not that any networks or cable program providers seem to have been utter fanatics on that score the last 30 years or so.
Beyond what might be, at best, be characterised as a hopeful, vague, butt-scratch of an alternative to a review, the piece then reverted to backyard gossip, as follows:
– Ooh, I don’t like HER character
– Ooh I do like HIS character. he seems to have had some spark with HER, but I wanted to see MORE of it
– Ooh, I don’t like her accent
– I’ve run out – here’s what other reviewers said
– I hope this actress does well – I like HER
And that was about the whole business, may the good Lord have mercy.
Between you and me, there is no such thing as reviewing or criticism any more. At least not in this country, and as contagions go, it’s an expanding problem beyond that, although we may well be international market leaders.
Read the mainstream media alternatives to criticism, particularly in the two Melbourne papers. There’s no sense of evaluation, no concept of relative merit, no indication that the writers concerned have any particular acuity when it comes to viewing or commenting on the medium concerned (they more than evidently have enough trouble with what is nominally their medium – i.e. the written word). It’s just the water-cooler/back-fence babbling of the media omnivore.
It’s even worse – they want to eat shit, like it, say they like it, and then be respected for it.
It’s even worse than THAT – they no longer recognise, if they ever did, that the shit is shit, and wouldn’t know good if they tumbled head-first up into a pile of it and were submerged in it. They simply don’t have the critical faculties to negotiate the difference between good and shit, and have emulated the audiences in ceasing to care.
And the final worsenator – neither public or the nominal ‘critic’ believes anymore that good is better than shit. They refuse to accept that as a valid argument. If it demands nothing of you, if it makes you feel good, if it presents total involvement and emotional stimulus in exchange for presenting virtually no content definable in any meaningful way as content and thus demanding a minimum of thought or studying time to become involved, that in itself is good enough. Even if it’s shit. Very much if it’s shit.
That’s how TV’s reviewed. Movie reviews are just as bad in a different way. Where they don’t have the ‘back-fence natter’ approach – and often they do, but it’s slightly disguised with bigger words and liberal sprinklings of terms like “CGI” and “Executive Producer” – all they are now is lumps of pure reviewer-speak disinterred from wasted years of the writers concerned having read other middlebrow dullards’ hectares of film reviews, which have copy that falls somewhere in between a furniture catalogue and the fine print in a superannuation fund newsletter in terms of raw excitement.
The key thing to factor in when considering modern movie reviewing is, does any human being ever talk like this out loud, not counting maybe a handful of hermit-like creatures at film festicles? Nope, because it’s written in pure received reviewer-speak, i.e. the kind of thing Mel Brooks once termed “authentic frontier gibberish”.
Part der Fred is: “And does anyone actually think like this?” Particularly with an eye to “Would this really be the main line of reponse anyone in real life might have to the film being reviewed?”
Film reviewing now is generally what a dull but earnest mind thinks is the kind of thing one should professionally write about a movie, particularly if one has the natural aptitude for that task that the average club golf pro has for particle physics.
Frankly the situation is hopeless. Reviews like the TV one mentioned above “needs more spark. perhaps more regular laughs”, that would struggle to make it to ‘opinion’ status, much less ‘review’. You might as well get him/her or anyone else around working in the same area to ‘review’ jam, toy cars or rutabaga. They’d like have exactly the same aptitude for it. None whatsoever.
I suspect the commentary isn’t just on those spectacularly hapless souls. It’s also on the folks a level or two higher in the media executive chain, as they, whether accidentally or otherwise, enabled the chowderheads now trying to pass themselves off as “critics”, or “reviewers” or whatever they think they are, which they aren’t.
That it’s all turned to complete bullpoo in these areas – i.e. criticism and reviewing of what were once termed, in grandpa’s time, “the liveliest arts” – is one thing, but that those responsible were incapable of recognising the transition let alone doing something about it, is a little more damning.
It probably tells us a fair bit about the mettle of the kinds of the media execs whose efforts we’ve endured in this country for some decades. That, by inaction, ignorance or otherwise, they wound up defining a time wherein people prefer not to recognise the distinction between good and shit, or are now incapable of defining such a distinction, must be the happiest of ironies for all concerned.
Fuck ’em though.