This Week In Pop Culture (8/25/17)
8/25/2017: Never Fear, James Cameron Is Here To Explain Feminism To Us
By Katie Goldin
Hello fellow female human creatures. Did you enjoy Wonder Woman? If so, I'm sorry to say that your fragile girl brain has been bamboozled. Luckily, James Cameron, water expert and professional woman explainer, is here to disabuse us of our faulty notion that Wonder Woman was "feminist." In an interview, he explained that Wonder Woman was a "step backwards," as the title character was "an objectified icon, and it's just male Hollywood doing the same old thing!" True, it was directed by a woman -- this woman, to be precise -- but it's not like she could understand what women need in a movie. Not like James Cameron, who compared Wonder Woman to the paragon of feminism: his own movies. According to him, Sarah Connor is the ideal feminist icon, because she's "strong," "troubled," and "a terrible mother," and "not a beauty icon," despite the fact that Linda Hamilton was the titular "beauty" in the '80s TV version of Beauty And The Beast.
Wonder Woman was not a terrible mother (in fact, the charlatan wasn't a mother at all!), and she is beautiful, ergo she's not feminist. It doesn't matter if us ladies liked it, because you see, the only time women would want an openly strong, sexy, and confident female lead is by being tricked by men in Hollywood. So thank god the auteur of 1997's Sinking Ship: Naked And Irrational Female Lead, the motion capture hit Sexy Blue Alien Ladies, and Water: The Movie is here to inform us women that our so-called "cool feminist hero" is nothing but a sham.
8/24/2017: Stephen King's Gerald's Game Works Better As An It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia Episode
By Ian Fortey
Stephen King's Gerald's Game is coming to Netflix, and I was so excited that I had to look up Gerald's Game on Wikipedia because I had no idea what this book is about. No offense to Mr. King -- I'm a fan, I love The Shining and I'm stoked for IT -- but the man writes books literally faster than I can read them, so one or two are going to slip through the cracks.
If you're like me and clueless about who Gerald might be and whether his game involves dice or a pop-o-matic bubble, let me take you to clue town. Gerald's Game is about a lady named Jessie whose husband wants to play some kind of sex game which involves her being handcuffed to the bed. Jessie is not into this shit and gives her husband a swift boot in the jimmies to set him straight. Unfortunately, the man falls, hits his head, has a heart attack, and dies. I like to think he also shits himself, but Wikipedia is only giving me a brief synopsis.
So Jessie here is cuffed to the bed with a corpse. What happens next? A "Space Cowboy" shows up and a dog eats her husband. You know, that old story. Is the space cowboy Matthew McConaughey's character from The Dark Tower? God, I hope so.
Jessie starts freaking out and hearing voices and realizes that the Space Cowboy (who apparently has a box of bones and jewelry) may be an asshole, so she better get the hell out of dodge. And she does so by slicing the shit out of her own hand and using the blood as sweet, slippery handcuff lube. Atta girl. I don't want to spoil the ending for you, but rest assured the word "necrophile" does appear on the Wikipedia page, and the dog that eats Gerald is named Prince. Frankly, this book sounds awesome. But it reminds me of something ...
After a solid read of this synopsis, it occurs to me this would be better titled "The Gang Plays Gerald's Game." This would be a perfect episode of It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia. Frank as the Space Cowboy, Dee cuffed to the bed, Dennis as her creepy husband (sure, they're brother and sister, but c'mon, that incest vibe is strong), and Charlie as the dog who comes in to eat him. Mac ... I dunno. He can show off his karate skills outside in the yard. Listen, I'm not writing the episode, I'm just saying it fits.
Bottom line, I've never heard of Gerald's Game, but I'm clearly going to be watching it on Netflix, and I hope Charlie, Frank, and the gang give it some serious thought.
8/23/2017: David Hasselhoff's Knight Rider Dream Is (Hilariously) Dead
By Lydia Bugg
On Monday, we briefly mentioned that David Hasselhoff was trying to get a Knight Rider reboot going with director Robert Rodriquez. Hasselhoff imagined the movie as a Logan-style dark and gritty reboot set in a world without technology. The Weinstein Company apparently heard this pitch and decided it was a great opportunity to crush that smug fucker's dreams.
Be careful what you wish for, David, because sometimes when you bring something back, it might look like your show, but it ain't that show all. When Hasselhoff buried Knight Rider in the pet cemetery, the Weinsteins brought it back. But the ground's sour, so they brought it back wrong. They probably invited David over for tea, then said, "Guess what, David? Knight Rider's alive again!" David's little eyes welled with tears of joy. Then Harvey Weinstein yelled, "But instead of you, we're trying to cast JJJJOOOHHHHNNN CCCCCEEEENNNNNAAAA!" Suddenly David realized what the big green paper wall in the day room was for, as Cena came bursting through it. Cena hasn't officially been cast yet, but he's cursed to appear whenever anyone yells his name in an announcer voice.
We can't really blame the Weinstein brothers for this objectively cruel announcement. A dark and gritty Knight Rider makes about as much sense as a dark and gritty reboot of Herbie the Love Bug. Technically, we don't know what the Weinsteins' vision for the movie entails. Maybe Cena will be running around a post-apocalyptic wasteland ripping people in half with his gigantic arms, but this seems unlikely, since they are also hoping to cast Kevin Hart as KITT the talking car. Announcing that they want to cast these two paints a picture of a sweet buddy cop comedy, in the vein of 21 Jump street, Baywatch, or CHIPs. Which objectively makes way more sense than the Hoff's original proposal.
So I have to send my apologies to David Hasselhoff. He got bamboozled by a reverse The Secret. He put his intention out into the world, and the Weinstein Company came around and said "We've got parts for John Cena, and here's one for Kevin Hart, and oh, tsk, looks like there's nothing left for you, David. Better luck next time." Maybe if he begs hard enough, he'll get a cameo as a drifter who KITT runs over in the opening. The Weinsteins will take over as director that day and stand over him, yelling, "Cry more, David. We want to feel your pain. You're dying, David. Dammit, CRY," even though the tears are so, so real.
8/22/2017: GOT Season 7 Is Basically Special Effects Mad Libs
By Luis Prada
Warning: Huge Game Of Thrones spoilers forthcoming.
Seriously, if you haven't seen the newest episode, turn away now.
Still reading? Ready for spoilers? Don't say we didn't warn ya ...
Here's something to keep in mind if you enjoyed seeing the Night King create a zombie ice dragon but were disappointed by the bafflingly poorly thought-out zombie capture squad plotline that led into it. Like me, you're probably wondering why Cersei would need a zombie to convince her that murderous zombies exist when her bodyguard is a murderous zombie. But here's the thing:
George R.R. Martin told the Game Of Thrones showrunners, David Benioff and Dan Weiss, how the books end, which likely includes some of the various pivotal moments that happen along the way. He didn't tell them what leads to those moments, because he hasn't written a lot of it out yet. At this point, Benioff and Weiss have blown past the published text and are now adapting the vague outline of an author who writes at the speed of sloths fucking. So they have to work backward to make it all fit with plot points that were cultivated over a span of 20 years and counting.
Now combine that with the rigors of a massive TV show's production schedule. This video released by HBO details the insane physical and digital labor the production crew put in over many months to create just one of seven episodes for this season. That means Benioff and Weiss have very little time left to work out the story details of a series its own author hasn't even figured out.
So they have to throw in inexpensive B-plots (like Arya and Sansa arguing about a note) that are just two people talking in a room for 20 minutes. That's why so many major battles end with a deus ex machina swooping in the last second to save our heroes. That's why we have plot diversions that don't really make sense but develop into game-changing WTF moments that feel true to the books. In the absence of a detailed plan, they need all of these cheap tricks to get the plot to function on a basic level.
If this annoys you as you watch the series wind down, here's a fun game you can play. It's called "Who Wrote This Shit?" After every big plot development, you place a bet on whether that's a critical moment that'll eventually happen in the books or another mad scramble from the show writers to figure out how all this shit fits together. Here's the fun part: It doesn't matter if you're right or wrong. We're going to keep giving George R.R. Martin and HBO our money because of goddamn giant ice dragons.
8/21/2017: If We Let A Knight Rider Sequel Happen, Where Does It End?
By Luis Prada
The hardest thing you can do for someone you love is to tell them no. This is especially true of celebrities, who are constantly informing journalists of the strange projects they want to work on. Actors need boundaries, and they need to learn that they can't get everything they want. We cannot cater to their nonsensical desires. It builds bad habits that lead to Battlefield Earth-sized mistakes. David Hasselhoff recently said that he wants a gritty Logan-style reboot of Knight Rider. This is the equivalent of a child asking for a chocolate chip marshmallow and pepperoni pizza for dinner. They think they want it, but unless we say "no," we're all going to have to deal with a disgusting abomination that gives us violent poop. If we allow Hasselhoff to have his Knight Rider reboot pizza, what's next? A comedic reimagining of Baywatch?
So in the spirit of establishing firm, consistent boundaries, it pains me to have to say that no, Ryan Reynolds, you cannot get a Deadpool and Avengers crossover, and no, Zack Snyder, you cannot make a George Washington biopic in the style of 300. There are some lines man was not meant to cross. A "badass" super-slow-mo greased-up and shirtless Washington crossing the Delaware is one of them. I'm sorry, Zack, but if you throw a tantrum over this, you're going to have to wait in the car.
And when Devon Sawa, the once-child actor who played the corporeal version of Casper in the 1995 film adaptation of Casper, asks for a Casper sequel, we have to hold firm, say no, and give him a plate of broccoli to eat until his brain gets smarter. Hopefully he's kidding -- in which case, good job, you almost gave us the mother of all heart attacks.
Jeff Goldblum, as much as we adore your eccentricities, we're putting our foot down. You cannot do a new sequel to The Fly, mostly because your head exploded at the end of the first one.
Speaking of The Fly, we will make one exception to the rule: Geena Davis says she wants to play an Amazon in Wonder Woman 2. Geena Davis, you're cool and don't get enough work, so we'll allow it.
But everyone else, you're in time out, so shut up and go stand in the "idiot" corner. Sit there and think about your mistakes, or no Otter Pops for dessert.
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