Here’s the thing about camp today: pure examples of it are extremely rare. First of all, we know too much; Sontag’s “Notes on Camp” was published in 1964 and has been assigned in humanities courses at liberal arts colleges ever since, so the possibility for an uncritical reception of a “new” camp object is fairly limited. Then, of course, the descriptor “camp” is generally applied to older things; in the moment, we are too caught up in the seriousness of whatever it is that we will come to see as over-serious and excessive and exuding mostly style. But the real sticking point is the all-pervasive cynicism ruling so much of art, fashion, character, life today. Cynicism is the killer of camp, it is the self-knowledge, self-irony and most importantly, general disdain that refuses the possibility of the ebullience of camp.
Last week on South Park: Mr. Garrison is busy dropping truth bombs across America but his quest for the White House isn’t resonating well with some sects of society, specifically those with an 8th grade education or higher. Jimmy Fallon is directing jokes of a similar nature at the good people of South Park, as he makes light of the type of community that would give rise to such an outspoken redneck on The Tonight Show. Butters is reduced to tears as he watches Fallon parody the state of education in his hometown: “Welcome to South Park University, open your shotguns and slap your wives”. Read More
In “A Good Man”, we all get the post-apocalypse we deserve, as Fear The Walking Dead draws to a close. All good things must come to an end. Fear The Walking Dead ended up being very good, despite a rocky start and some missteps. Most of these were corrected in FTWD’s conclusion.
First of all, let us address the rotting corpse in the room – the zombies (or “Walkers” or “biters” or “shambling bags of flesh”, choose your sobriquet.) The main criticism I saw leveled at the AMC mini-series was the lack of Walkers, which is a pretty serious allegation for a show with “The Walking Dead” making up ¾ of its title. “The Good Man” makes up for this drought in spades, with wave after wave of rotting flesh, as The Walking Dead‘s universe sees its very first herd. Read More
The Leftovers isn’t afraid to be cerebral. The show doesn’t cater to the no audience member left behind formula—you either like or you don’t; if you don’t, there are plenty of ways to turn your brain into an egg with the telicopia of shows out there. The Leftovers plays a unique brain scrambler with the audience. Instead of creating a mystery with mystery, it creates mystery with drama. Of course, we want to know what caused the departure, but the show looks at how everybody deals with it in the multitude of ways they rationalize absurdity and process grief. The show doesn’t ask how, it asks why. Read More
2015 has been a pretty horrorshow year for horror television. Between the high-profile, high-production-value extended Slasher Flick of MTV’s Scream: The Series and Fox’s frankly hilarious horror/comedy Scream Queens, 2015 stands to be remembered as a gold standard year for the format, helping us all to move on from the mostly underwhelming snorefest that was True Detective Season 2 and the uncertainty in our hearts towards Fear The Walking Dead. Read More
In which difficult choices are made; some “good guys” are not so good; some other “good guys” remain the same; things get smashed; and a mysterious new character is introduced. Things are coming to a head, as Fear The Walking Dead reaches its culmination. We’ve left the rules behind as the morality of this world are becoming a thing of the past; the ensemble is introduced to a new world of brutality. We’ll also find out what our characters are really made of and what the Army is really up to. Read More
The action heats up and starts to boil up on “Not Fade Away”, despite the calm on the surface and a decided dearth of Walkers.
Fear The Walking Dead has been a slow burn, thus far, taking the time to develop characters and establish the tension that ultimately makes it so successful. While many have criticized Fear The Walking Dead for being a “family drama with zombies”, that’s exactly what the creators were going for. It provides a necessary emotional subtext to really feel the onset of Armageddon. Read More
This week on South Park: Principal Victoria is fired after one of her elementary student’s refers to the act of rape as a “hot Cosby”. Addressing a cafeteria packed with parents and students, Victoria’s replacement, PC Principal, vows to clamp down on the school’s rampant bigotry whilst calling out Mr. Garrison for telling his 4th grade class that women without wombs should get AIDS tests (in Mr. Garrison’s defense, he was a lesbian when he said that). Read More
The action’s heating up, as three families in AMC’s Fear The Walking Dead leave this world behind, encroaching further into the iconic ruin of the Walker-infested wasteland.
“Civilization is like a thin layer of ice upon a deep ocean of chaos and darkness.” – Werner Herzog