Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Epsiode 56 - I Will Not Watch It, Sam-I-Am!

Can you believe people actually watch bonnet movies? You know, those semi-romantic historical dramas with female protagonists? Blech! Don't they know their artistic sensibilities are morally inferior and seriously stunted? I mean, if you're not watching Orange Is The New Black, who are you really?

Or...perhaps, we all have different tastes in what stories we enjoy. Is that possible? And if so, what does it mean? This episode, Tim and Nick discuss the role of tastes in how we interact with stories and how being aware of our own tastes can broaden our view of art.

Then we dive into the strange world that is Homestuck as part of It Came From the Intrawebs! We may or may make sense of it.

Listen in! No matter your tastes, I'm sure you'll find something enjoyable in episode 56 of Derailed Trains of Thought. If not, you're obviously an uneducated lout.


Show Notes

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  1. Well, Tim, since I was name-dropped for the first time in a few episodes, I'll try to explain the appeal of giant monsters and giant robots. Or at least the appeal of "Pacific Rim." Let's go with the latter.

    First, it has outstanding creature and robot designs. The creatures have recognizable traits yet also seem alien. They're powerful and scary. The robots are given loads of personalities even though they're essentially humanoid vehicles. Director Guillermo del Toro intentionally had Gypsy Danger (the main blue) designed to look "trustworthy" so as to get audiences to root for it. It's also a colorful movie when many blockbusters have been preferred muted colors or sepias. The action is intense and cool. The heroes are always on the brink of defeat and survive by the skin of their teeth. I also love the "drift" piloting system used for the robots. It's unique among giant robots, and it helps show how important the relationships are between the characters.

    Those are a few reasons I like it.

    Tastes, I've found, are often eclectic, weird, and often contradictory. Even my own. I enjoy heady films and high literature, but I also read comic books and watch Michael Bay's "Transformers." Yet I hate the first live-action "G.I. Joe" movie (despite it having some great actors in it).

    I think tastes are often formed in one's formative years. They can change over time, but people have a fondness for things they enjoyed as a kid, even if they were bad. Someone who grew up reading Avengers comics is more likely to enjoy a Marvel film and overlook it's imperfections than someone who didn't. Tastes can also change thanks to significant people in our lives. I doubt I'd have watched the BBC's epic 5-hour version of "Pride and Prejudice" if not for an ex-girlfriend.

    Anyway, just a few thoughts. Carry on.

  2. That's a fair point about our tastes being formed early on. For example, Transformers was a cartoon my mom never let me watch growing up because she was afraid it would be too violent. Strangely though, she didn't keep me from watching G.I. Joe on special occasions, perhaps because that was drenched in American imagery while Transformers looked strange and foreign. That may have rubbed off on me, since I never cared much about missing Transformers. Plus, I think it's telling that the aliens and darkness of Star Wars made me hate it at age 6, but the exciting storytelling made me love it at age 12. Heroes and adventure have always been the primary draw for sci-fi and fantasy for me, with aliens and creature design taking a back seat.

    But like you said, tastes change over time. I've gained a greater appreciation for creature design thanks to my fascination with Jim Henson. And there were a number of things I enjoyed about Pacific Rim such as the colorful cinematography and some of the action scenes. It's always good to expand your appreciation of different tastes, though there's certainly nothing wrong with having your favorites. :-)

  3. Also, Linkara reviewed Act 1 of "Homestuck" in his latest episode. I thought you'd enjoy it:

  4. Also, if you haven't seen "Inside Out" yet, WHY NOT?! It has a literal Train of Thought that derails!