Sunday, March 1, 2015

A Few Thoughts On A Few Things

Not gonna lie. It’s just past noon and I’m only now getting my first sip of coffee in for the day, so I find the process of posting to be… meh. This week I shall simply post a few thoughts on a few things.


Michelle Rodriguez came under fire when she made of point of saying the minorities should stop stealing white people's superheroes. Upon hearing this, people naturally found themselves offended, because it's the new millennium and people are sensitive little shits. After the pissing and the moaning commenced, Rodriguez posted a video to clarify what she meant when she said that it's stupid for minorities to play white superheros. 

I think she has a point. It is lazy writing. Comics are definitely suffering from a severe case of lazy scribes these days, which is bound to happen when the stories never end and the heroes never die. Eventually new ideas are going to dry up and the people who are so desperate to keep the flow of superheroes coming are going to resort to changing the race, gender and sexual orientation of already established heroes when they could just try the crazy idea of making something new. 

I'm not a fan of the ongoing series. I think it's a terrible idea.The best stories, whether they're ten pages long or ten books long all come to an end, and that's what makes them satisfying. The end of a story is the punchline, and without it there's nothing to give you proper satisfaction as you close the two covers and take a deep breath. I have an entire bookshelf of comics and trade paperbacks, and it's full of independent stories or single arcs of a character's run. I think those are what's best. I have great stories, but I don't have the long running periods where the writer ran out of ideas and just threw things at the wall. 


I'm moving in two days. Nothing is packed. Seriously, nothing. I still have dirty dishes in the sink, which in all likelihood are not going to be washed, but rather simply be carried over to my new sink and await washing there. I mentioned this to the hippy and she didn't get mad, so it's happening. 

The reason for my laziness is probably that I'm not exactly moving a long distance. The hippy and I are moving to an apartment in the same complex that I'm already living in, and I have three days to transfer my stuff. So... yeah... why bother? I'm just going to carry stuff into the new place and set it on the floor of my room, then go back and get more stuff to set on the floor. It can all come off the floor when I'm done transferring.


This is the projected publication date for She Sees Metaphors. I am planning to publish the ebook first and then the paperback shortly thereafter. You have been warned.

I have made it no secret that I absolutely love Irvine Welsh, especially Marabou Stork Nightmares, Filth, and Porno. Of course I enjoy Trainspotting, but I feel his middle works are where his talent really shines through. His later efforts, Skag Boys and Crime were rather disappointing for me. I wasn't drawn into them like I was his other efforts. So when I saw that The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins was out, I was kind of iffy on it. Still, I picked a copy up and started reading it. So far, I'm actually enjoying the hell out of it. Reading it, I'm reminded of why I loved his earlier work so much. It's dark, crude, and a lot of fun. I look forward to continue putting off moving in favor of reading.

Rapists and Nazis!

Speaking of lazy writing, I've been thinking of late just how much I detest the idea of rapists and Nazis as villains in a story due to their laziness and lack of imagination. With exception to real life rapists and real life Nazis, everyone pretty much hates these people for their crimes against humanity; which is precisely why they make for awful villains in film literature and so forth. 

A good antagonist is built up along with the protagonist. We get to see their evil at work and watch them scheme to hurt the character that we're falling in love with. The most recent antagonist that I have loved to hate is Sam Neill's CI Chester Campbell in Peaky Blinders. While he does have a rape scene of his own, the genius behind the writing of his character is that he's already been so built up into this vicious monster of a man who thinks he's doing the Lord's work that we already have a reason to despise him and to root for Cillian Murphy's Thomas Shelby. The writers took their time and they developed him properly. They could have just shown his rape a woman and left it at that. 

Leading off with these two character traits does little else than to just tell the audience to hate the character. It can be done in a single sentence and that will be that. So while I'm not saying to avoid using these two antagonist traits altogether, I am saying that they should come secondary to other creative bits that allow the audience to see the negative side to a character.


I got a haircut.

1 comment:

  1. While, as a white male, I do not feel it is my place to criticize a Latino woman's experience of representation in media, I do see a problem with simply writing off attempts to use already-popular characters to gain more minority representation in comics.

    Name the most popular comics characters. Chances are, you listed off names like Spider-Man, Batman, Wolverine, Superman, Captain America, Iron Man. What do these characters all have in common? A) they are all white men (except Captain America at the moment. And Ultimates universe Spider-Man. But these are both examples of white heroes being changed anyway.) B) They are all over 50 years old. (OK, Wolverine is just over 40. Point still stands.)

    What I'm getting at is, it takes time for comics characters to get popular. And right now, nostalgia sells. People want to see comics and movies starring the heroes they grew up with. If we want more minority representation in comics and movies, we don't want to wait another 50 years for them to become household names. It makes perfect sense to me to use some of these already-popular characters to provide readers of all races and backgrounds a hero they can identify with.

    It certainly can be lazy writing to just decide that one day Nick Fury's black, Samuel L. Jackson-lookalike son, who just happens to have also lost an eye, is taking over for his father. And his name is also Nick Fury, no Jr. But it doesn't have to be written lazily. Some heroes (like Iron Man, or Batman) are people in suits, and the mantle can be handed down to a protege without any stretch of the imagination. Others like Superman have a long history of stumbling upon others with a similar background. Superboy, Supergirl, fuck there's even Krypto the Superdog. If there can be a dog with heat-vision, we can handle an alt-universe Hispanic Superman. In fact, I think there could be some very interesting commentary (a la Red Son) of exploring the alien's experience if he bore the flesh tones of a racial minority while growing up truly alien.