persona non sequitur

a review of media by a slightly jaded baby boomer.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


In the DVD Compilation of ROBOT CHICKEN , there’s a small snippet of Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader hashing out the plot line of the series. One of them was “Ewoks are going to bring down the Empire?”

Let’s just say they probably were an indication that things from then on would stink for STAR WARS.

To begin with they’re cute. Bad sign. They’re marketable. Art and commerce clash here.

Logically, if they were that fuzzy, the wouldn’t want to wear armor.

My view: delete them from the movie and reshoot the Ewok sequences with human children, with a side story that when the Empire came to plant themselves, they killed all adults and left the children to starve.

And when the Jedi come to the planet they rally themselves and search the rubble for items to help bring down the Empire.

Far more satisfying to imagine kids doing this than hamsters with a gland problem.

Oh yes, I did a review of the EWOK movie on I’m hoping for a movie called PREDATOR MEETS EWOKS, so I can root for the Predator.

SNAKES ON A BRAIN: the story of Medusa

DANDELION VINEGAR (excerpt) 1957

I can’t tell if this was a dream. It was as if I was watching the television, and on the screen were these images. The television seemed to vanish. The object in the sky passed over the people, and they dissolved. The skin and flesh peeled away and the bones were standing, just momentarily and dropped. The object in the sky floated over many communities and the results were all the same. It gave off a hum, a disturbing low level sound that made me feel uneasy.

This seemed to have gone on for several minutes.

I cannot tell if this was a dream or something unwittingly broadcast.

Jokes no one tells:

Micheal Vic's Vapo Rub. Comes in two scents: poodle and pit bull.

The Hidden adventures of Mark Trail


REVIEWER FATIGUE: wherein you discover a book review about a really lame novel gets good marks because the reviewer had previously read ten worthless dipped in manure styled novels and the lame one seemed pretty damn good by comparison.

SERIES FATIGUE: where a good writer loses ground by trying to do too much. Examples: Larry Niven. David Brin.

IDIOT CRITICISM: the ability to drag into a review all and everything in the world around us, but fail to concentrate on the content of the novel being discussed. Examples: a lot of VILLAGE VOICE REVIEWS, where the writer has to fill in reams of paper.

NON FUNCTIONAL WORD PATTERNS: a term coined by Darrell Schwietzer to describe stories that made no sense, had no content but were “literary”. Examples: BABEL by Alan Burns, a “novel” that consists of unrelated paragraphs, and the works of James Sallis.

LITERARY NOVEL: written by an academic who has done nothing but read all his life. Henry James could fit this bill.

USED TO BE A GOOD WRITER. Often a few good novels produced by some writers early in their careers are what keeps them currently publishable, though they haven’t produced anything with any quality of recent. If I name certain writers they will hunt me done and shoot me.

NEVER WAS ANY GOOD. Used to describe Barry Malzberg.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Couldn't get the images out of my brain. So I had to put them in your faces. Somewhere someone else will realize that "Spinner" from the TV series CLUTCH CARGO is the same person as "Rusty" from MARK TRAIL. Someone loves to draw ugly kids? Separated at Birth? Shoot to kill? Too many questions.

Mark Tail is about as good as Clutch Cargo, by the way.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

toenail notes...

It would seem to me that J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series changed the world in a way that brings to mind what the Beatles accomplished with their music. Pretty much the whole transformation with reading and music and movies and games and products. About the only thing the Beatles didn't do was to increase book reading. The idea of a book longer than WAR AND PEACE would be read by young adults would have been scoffed at. Years back, the idea of Booger flavored jelly beans for sale would have gotten a grim stare. Pottermania seems to have hit all areas, from references in editorial cartoons to video games.

Henry James wrote some books. Over intellectualised them to the point the public wouldn't read them, and they appealed only to the academic market. Henry James spent too much time by himself writing, used up what little life experience he had and spent the rest of his life fussing over structure. Which is why Henry James still gets printed, because someone will teach his tomes to a college crowd. In this sense, I can understand the worldview of "Classic doesn't mean entertaining."

Henry Selick will be directing Neil Gaiman's CORALINE as stop motion animation, much like NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS, which he also directed. Selick's previous movie direction was the messy and confusing MONKEYBONE, which allowed me to think "Brendon Fraser will do anything."

Someone I was discussing films with briefly mentioned he had seen PLAN NINE FROM OUTER SPACE on TV. I told him that the commercials probably improved the content, and prevented him from realising how abysmal the whole movie is. The commercial breaks alter the content, the same way edits alter content. Seeing the film by itself would allow the whole ghastliness of it to "shine".

Asked if I ever watched SCIENCE FICTION MYSTERY THEATER 3000, I shrugged that "I don't need a surrogate for my sarcasm."

Took to reading a book titled FIVE PEOPLE WHO DIED DURING SEX, one which was Nelson Rockafeller, and it wasn't his wife. The 27 year old spent a few minutes trying to get out from under the dead politician and phoned "authorities". They also didn't mention my father in law.

Also in the previously noted tome was asection about "Ten Foods" which were considered outrageous. Durian Fruit gets mentioned. Haggis also rates, and is considered so vile that you can't import it to the USA. The USA has its own peculiar food, like funnel cake, fried possum pie, armadillo on the half shell...stuff they wouldn't allow in Scotland.