Wednesday, February 15, 2012

NG is NG

A few years back, when Bush was President, I'd occasionally document how popular entertainment critics would drag him into their reviews just to remind you they didn't like him.  I could have done it every day, so deep was their hatred, so tangential the connections.  Since Obama has been elected, they don't seem so interested in mentioning the President (except for the occasional analogy to characters held down by the small-minded masses).

Now with Republicans trying to choose a new candidate, the critics seem ready for a new name to kick around. At present, the favorite seems to be Newt Gingrich.  For instance, there's David Denby noting--in his New Yorker review of Chronicle, where three teens gain supernatural powers--that one of the things they don't do is levitate Newt Gingrich to the moon so he can build a colony.  Meanwhile, in Meredith Blake's take on the latest Dowton Abbey, we get (spoiler):

At the funeral, Matthew tells Mary he believed Lavinia died of a broken heart. “We’re the ones that killed her. We’re cursed, you and I.” Now, a little remorse is understandable; after all, it’s not like Matthew is Newt Gingrich or something. But come on, really?

I understand how proud they are of their political views, and how hard it is to hold them in, but do they really think this makes their writing better?  Or is it they believe Newt will be gone soon enough and are frightened he might leave the national stage without everyone knowing how they feel?

7 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The fact that Newt is a political candidate is almost beside the point. He represents an appalling human spectacle (the look, the tantrums, the unapologetic swapping out of mates) as much any villain in popular culture. The frothy one and the haircut are not saying anything much different yet are not inspiring similar references

2:51 AM, February 15, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As soon as they take the mantle, you'll find all sorts of reasons they are appalling human spectacle. But you'll always have the comfort of referring back. "I wouldn't have thought it possible, but he's worse than Newt."

3:02 AM, February 15, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are hundreds of easy shots to take at Obama, but the critics somehow managed to hold their tongues for three and a half years while easy analogies were readily available. On the other hand, they'd bend heaven and earth to make sure someone like Newt gets a slighting mention. The mere fact they have a default assumption of Newt as villain, while the President who's had the highest regular unemployment since the Depression and the highest deficit we've ever seen somehow escapes unscathed, shows how worthless their politican tangents are.

10:13 AM, February 15, 2012  
Anonymous Lawrence King said...

Sometimes the reviewers have to twist the facts to play this game. This review of Coriolanus makes an analogy to the Occupy movement early on. But in the final paragraph he wants to use this analogy to show how the plebes are being persecuted, and suddenly he switches from the USA to Greece. It would mess up his analogy if he stayed on the topic of Occupy -- leaving human excrement in the path of police officers, refusing to report rapes in their camps, destroying dioramas made by schoolchildren in the Oakland City Hall.

9:04 AM, February 17, 2012  
Blogger LAGuy said...

I don't think much of the movie version of Coriolanus but I think even less of the review. Forget the strained and insulting connections the critic tries to make to today's world (they always seem surprised Shakespeare is relevant), look at this sentence:

"Thankfully, screenwriter John Logan ("Hugo") has preserved Shakespeare's original language..."

Boy we sure are lucky he did what was an absolute necessity, without which there'd have been no possibility of making the film.

9:51 AM, February 17, 2012  
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4:17 AM, February 15, 2013  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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1:30 AM, January 06, 2014  

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