Celebrity, Paranoia, and Risk

Several topics rattling around my head....that seem (!) related. But maybe everything is related. Joe Nava wrote a nice small essay titled Looking for the Unconscious in Film, on his blog, here... http://www.joenava.com/ There is in this topic, a relation to the spectacle as it was vomited forth on all media outlets this week. The DNC. In particular, though, I've been thinking on Michelle Obama's speech. And by extension on the colonizing of consciousness. And I've been thinking a bit about Zizek, and how philosophy now, in the guise of this self promoting buffoon, is just more branding. Actually, its worse, for Zizek advertises himself as a leftist. And he's not left on anything. … [Read more...]


I wanted to add to the discussion taking place on the comments thread of the previous posting. The subject of beauty came up -- so I begin this with a personal favorite painting, Joachem Wtewael Perseus and Andromeda, dated from 1611. The painting is in The Louvre, and last time I was there I stood for probably most of the morning staring at the figure of the woman. She seems more modern to me. Maybe late 18th century, or 19th century. She seems both a goddess and a cute barmaid. I've wanted to run away with her for thirty years...since I first saw this painting. Why does she look more modern? Well, I think its the mouth, the slightly proletarian features, the long waist and just slightly … [Read more...]

A Short Exegesis on Performance and The Uncanny

As is often the case, I find a number of unrelated, or semi-unrelated topics, somehow converging ...at least in my brain. Acting is complex discussion, and it is so mediated by the same economic forces driving studio film and TV, a rather obvious observation I grant you, that any analysis is going to run up against factors of commodification and marketing. That all said, one of the things I've noticed is that the criteria for "good" has shifted. It may or may not be useful to trace back the cross pollinating of Actor's Studio, RADA, The Group Theatre, The Mercury Theatre, and on to the increasingly influential Drama Center of London. However, I do think it's useful to look at some of … [Read more...]

Amnesia, Elections, and Narrative

The intersection of art and politics is one of the topics of this blog. And one way in which to approach the topic....which is obvious....is to explore the master narratives and the master discourse, as its constantly being recreated and reproduced by the culture industry and by (especially) the US state department. An obvious example of political theatre is the US presidential election campaigns. There is a jaw dropping mind numbing hypocricy at work with a majority of the US public. It's hard to know how many, and I can only point to my own experiences, really, and also to sort of project out from the tiny amount of real surveying that has gone on regards this. It's easy to forget that … [Read more...]

Dialogue #5/ with Molly Klein

Weeds Who Gets To Fuck Nancy? … [Read more...]

Dialogue #5/ with Molly Klein: Weeds, or Who Gets to Fuck Nancy

Who Gets to Fuck Nancy? I think this scene captures the appeal of Weeds and its place nestled in a little cluster of genres. We have a joyous vision of the California utopia with no excessive aspirations – just a day at the shopping centre with everyone happy and prosperous and friendly. Then a reminder of the dangers and costs; Mexico/Crime appears - out of another genre, a broader comedy. That killer will have charming but cliché lines rehashing the popular “Sopranos” effect – the thug voicing the ordinary sitcom and talkshow family discourse. His wife will call his mobile and say hurry up and kill Nancy because she has made a dinner that will spoil. He will divulge the secret of … [Read more...]

Kevlar Killers

There is a aura of fear that the poor feel around cops. In the United States, anyway. And if you're black, all the worse. The other day, Darrius Kennedy was shot point blank just off Times Square in New York. Kennedy allegedly had a knife. There were ten uniformed and armed policemen. None had tasers. All had guns. And they shot Kennedy, point blank, twelve times. Considering that I could have probably disarmed Mr Kennedy, one does wonder why he has shot in the street like a rabid dog. But I can find you more... 20 year old Deshone Travis By: JOANN MERRIGAN | WSAV News 3 Published: June 27, 2012 » 8 Comments | Post a Comment (Savannah, GA) Robert Travis doesn't … [Read more...]


Random notes. Gene Sperling, who is Director of the National Economic Council, was also technical advisor for West Wing. He attended the Wharton School of Business, U. of Penn. Andy Stern, former head of the 2.2 million member large Service Employees International Union, also attended the Wharton School of Business, U. of Penn. Andy visited the Obama whitehouse 53 times since inauguration. Erskine Bowles was appointed, in 2010, as co-chair of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform (with Alan K. Simpson). Previously, Bowles had been Bill Clinton's White House Chief of Staff. He also sits on the board of directors for General Motors, and Morgan Stanley. Oh, he … [Read more...]