In Scandinavian folklore, a troll is a big, slow idiot beast that eats people and turns to stone in the sunlight. After some jiggering throughout history, a troll became an asshole who assholes his way through life in an asshole way, but does so knowingly. This is key. The difference between a troll and any asshole is that any asshole doesn't even get that they're an asshole. They live in asshole ignorance. Trolls do it on purpose, but they do it so well that it becomes an all-consuming brand of psychotic assholery that some people refuse to believe is real, because how could it be? How could this person be such an asshole all the time if it's not genuine, unintentional assholery? Well, there are some signs to look out for, and I will guide you through it using four of the world's most prolific trolls. Because I'm helpful like that.
#4. Nancy Grace
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Ugh. That's how every story on Nancy Grace should begin, owing to her detestable and repugnant nature. If goodness smelled like roses, Nancy Grace would smell like a Magnum condom dredged from the bottom of a cistern in a Mumbai sewage treatment plant.
Grace has made her entire career out of loud mouthing her way through tragedy at the expense of good sense and tact. She doesn't care if she's right, or if she has all the facts, as long as she can sensationalize something terrible and get people to listen to her shrill caterwauling long enough to justify the network cutting her a paycheck. In a more perfect world, they'd simply toss her a raw steak and lock her back in the enclosure with the other shaven apes, but life isn't fair, so here we are.
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"When we dated, Nancy had the worst ass beard."
In a stunning and gut-churning twist, there was a time when Nancy Grace was an actual legal professional. People's fates were partially in her hands for real, and not just as a result of her slinging blame like so much poop on her nauseating television shows. Fortunately for us, her shittier nature put a swift end to her legal career, as she had convictions overturned thanks to her withholding evidence and playing "fast and loose" with facts. So basically the shit she does on TV now is the shit she did in courtrooms when she was a lawyer -- she's a scumbag liar who prejudges people based on her ass-brained understanding of the situation.
I'll give Nancy the benefit of the doubt these days when it comes to trolling -- either what she's doing is willful trolling or she's electrodes-in-the-urethra-to-celebrate-Arbor-Day insane. But her mean-spiritedness makes me feel like this isn't mental illness, just twatishness. She's a twat.
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"I'll see you next Tuesday. Get it? Get it!?"
During the Elizabeth Smart case, Grace repeatedly called one suspect guilty on television when it turned out he wasn't. After the death of the Ultimate Warrior, Grace insinuated that his death was related to drugs, which it wasn't, along with the deaths of numerous other wrestlers who also hadn't been linked to drugs. This has been Grace's problem since she hatched from the pit -- she takes one potentially relevant assumption and rides it like a dying pony into the ground, regardless of whether there's any need for it. She's a reactionary, thoughtless slug of a human. If a bag of farts could wear blouses from Big Lots, it would be Nancy Grace.
Now, if we're being rational, we know that Grace actually graduated from law school, so technically she has to have at least some brains mixed in with the shit in her head, and that means she has at least a minimal understanding of the actual criminal justice system and the very basic, very easy to understand presumption of innocence. It's literally impossible for her to not be aware of it. And that means she's willingly and flagrantly ignoring it. And why? Because that gets her simian hide on the news and in social media. It's how she gets noticed. Otherwise she's just an irrelevant sack of poop with a terrible haircut. She's trolling for relevancy in a desperate attempt to maintain influence. She doesn't care about the people she pretends to be championing, and she couldn't give half a shit for justice. She wants to be seen, like the world's most foul stripper -- look at me and give me recognition and money. That's all. Fuck that filthy barnacle.
#3. Michael Bay
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Is Michael Bay a legit filmmaker or a glorified monkey with a film camera and a penchant for titties and splosions? Is there necessarily a difference? Any forum on the Internet (known in some circles as the Hallowed Halls of Intellectualism) that discusses movies will endlessly debate the merits of Michael Bay's film history, and more often than not the decision will fall on the side of "shitastic." People love to hate Michael Bay movies, even though every Michael Bay movie has made more money than every other Michael Bay movie and we've all seen them.
The question now, in 2014, after a solid 20 years of Michael Bay movies, is how can you still believe he doesn't know what he's doing? Ever since Bad Boys in 1995, Bay has been criticized for his heavy reliance on explosions over dialogue and body counts of innocent bystanders in the dozens (if not hundreds) over any kind of accountability or responsibility for his central characters. He makes action movies that are built on a solid foundation of images that would flash through the head of a 15-year-old while he masturbates on a roller coaster in a thunderstorm.
"There's something in my eye!"
Every new Bay movie is met with the same derision as his previous works. Just look at the animosity already directed toward his unreleased next feature, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which Bay is only producing, not directing. Fans have reacted in a way that suggests that Bay's influence has ruined the legacy of cartoon turtles that eat pizza and fight a big alien brain while receiving spiritual guidance from an elderly rat. No one can ruin that. That's the dumbest fucking sentence I have ever typed. Michael Bay could literally film himself fucking a real turtle with a nunchuck and it would be no less artistic than the source material. But the general consensus already is that Megan Fox was a terrible casting choice and the turtle effects look shitty. Because we've all seen bipedal man-turtles, and these ones don't live up to our expectations.
I would argue, after Transformers 2, in which a robot literally had low-hanging testicles that were visible on screen and noticed by all, that there is no way that Michael Bay is accidentally making bad movies. The movies he has directed have made over $4.6 billion worldwide. No one is $4.6 billion stupid. That's in defiance of nature and goodness. Michael Bay does what he does on purpose for $4.6 billion reasons. Everyone talks about his movies. Everyone goes to see them, and everyone bitches enough to make everyone who hasn't seen them take a look to see what the big deal is, and that roller coaster keeps thundering through the wank storm.