That Monster About To Come Alive Again

When I was younger I was obsessed with Godzilla. I still own all of the films released before 2001, excluding the Matthew Broderick one, on principle.

Over the past few years I have been very excited about the work of Kanye West. Each album shudders into the cultural crater it leaves on impact.

I think that these two interests may be related, emerging from similar parts of my mind or personality.

Godzilla is (or was?) the King of the Monsters, as declared in the English-language remix of the original 1954 film, Gojira.

Similarly, in one of Kanye's major lyrical debuts, The Bounce on Jay-Z's 2002 The Blueprint 2, he, referencing Shrek, says, You're a monster!"

Then on 2010's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, he continues the theme with the more plainly stated massive collab, Monster, in which Kanye and friends explain all the various ways in which they resemble monsters, with Kanye taking the lead, just as Godzilla does on Monster Island.

Most recently, on this year's Yeezus, Kanye opens the album with On Sight, in which he says early in the first verse, a monster about to come alive again.

The next song, Black Skinhead, They see a black man with a white woman at  the top floor they gone come to kill King Kong, a reference to the original monster movie, and Godzilla's first foe fought in color, released in America in 1963, 50 years after Yeezus. I've been a menace for the longest

On New Slaves, he says both, I'm 'bout to wild the fuck outI'm going Bobby Boucher and Y'all 'bout to turn shit upI'm 'bout to tear shit downI'm 'bout to air shit out, which I personally think is an accurate description of Godzilla's M.O.

The whole album, and most of his work, as I've written on here too much, is monstrous, aggressive, violent, explosive, a product and reflection of society's self-destructive force-du-jour.

He rises. He changes everything. He sinks back into the sea, forming the plans that worry the surface.

But they don't see him coming. They can't stop him.

 

Does it even matter, in the end?

In High Fidelity, the John Cusack movie that aired on Comedy Central when I watched it, he wonders at one point whether we're miserable because we listen to pop music, or if we listen to pop music because we're miserable. I posit that it is the former.

My thoughts on this subject began when I was recently listening to the single most definitive pop act of the past 20 years, Linkin Park, on a Waffle House jukebox.

In the song that they sing(?), they say "I tried so hard and got so far, but in te end it doesn't even matter." This after opening the song saying "it doesn't even matter how hard you try."

This song was primarily intended for enjoyed by teenagers about a decade ago.

And what happens when thoughts like these are fed to impressionable youths in some of their most important and formative years? They end up believing that it doesn't even matter how hard they try.

So they conclude, rationally if starting from such a premise, that the best policy is to not try at all.

This leads to a lack of preparation for a world that, as it turns out, values effort, and a lack of specific skills. This lack of deliberate preparation becomes an accidental preparation for a massive and growing service industry that requires a massive and growing number of simple task completers with no better options.

And following decades of hollowing and selling off of America's non-service industries, this growing need is increasingly dominant.

Who knows this? The U.S Chamber of Commerce.

And who else runs in similar lobbying circles and bears a similar level of influence on American economic policy? The Recording Industry Association of America.

And who is a major member of the RIAA? Warner Bros. records.

And who did Warner Bros. sign to their label in 1999? Linkin Park.

The RIAA even certified Linkin Park's debut album, Hybrid Theory, platinum in 2005.

It's almost spooky, right?

And now we have a whole generation of young people who are unable to start their businesses, climb ladders of success and buys houses and shit.

 

Teenagers from a decade ago: in the end is does even matter. It matters to the RIAA and Chamber of Commerce. And now they own you.

Frownie face.

 

Brain clouds, psychological reactions and compatibility

Back in January, I began yanking a mental yarn "on the exaltation of the amateur", before getting tired and promising to pick up one of several descendant threads I eventually came across. Let's pick back up with the first.

"a - The layering and cross-contamination of mature/immature, naive/cynical, young/old, smart/dumb."

This was a topic that I remember thinking about much more back in those college days. Me and this thought haven't spent as much time together recently. I wonder why that is?

The essence of the thought came from an appreciation of childish things –– naivety, sincerity, enthusiasm –– and of things that I guess represent something more mature –– cynicism, irony, insouciance.

While I enjoyed traits from both of these categories, I would get upset if I saw them mix, because it usually ended in the naive being duped, taken advantage of or ridiculed by the cynic. Humiliation or embarrassment can be felt, though usually second hand, because the dupee, if completely naive and sincere, will take irony at face value and not realize what is happening. They are dumb. They miss things.

People are mostly (always?) born on the naive side and then develop the layers of irony and cynicism they require to defend themselves against those further along in their hardening.

We need both. Life is both. It just bothered me to see the hardening take place.

But that's dumb. No hardening is required. The hardening is just letting the hard win. In stories with these characters mixing, the way that the naive and sincere win is by simply disregarding the cynic, or inviting them to join the naive in their enthusiasm.

The cynic attempts domination of and elevation above the naive. The naive invite the cynic in. Or ignore them.

Which brings me back to January.

As I said, everyone has a voice on the web, even the people with more enthusiasm than talent.

Dolan ridicules them, but dolan is them. Dolan is saying that if we're all going to read all the shit that gets posted online, then we might as well read this shit that gets posted online.

What starts as an attempt to compile all the things that shouldn't be said, only so much cansur and raep and faks can be given. It has to become something else in it's voyage across the meme sea.

This one shows the authors frustrations with the George Zimmerman trial.

This anti-dolan attacks the irony with the irony.

'Sgood!

Similarly, we have Lil B. This tattooed Bay Area youth is frequently expresses a desire to take the women of men he meets, to fill them with... gratitude. But really, the Based God is about love and truth and faith and freedom, in the dumbest ways possible.

 

It's 2013. What's Comedy Doing?

Initially I wanted to write this post just because the "Comedy & Art" section to my blog had far fewer entries in it than any of the other categories.

This got me thinking about what I've enjoyed lately in comedy and art, and it took me too long. So I'm writing about that long silent stare at my desktop that represented my thoughts on the state of things.

Ironically, I've recently been on a binge of liking things, all of the things, which, if you knew me several years ago, you'd find as strange as I occasionally do.

But I haven't really loved much recently. There hasn't been too many things that I complete and walk away from and can't stop thinking about.

I loved Yeezus, but I've already written about it, recently.

I really enjoyed More Stories About Spaceships And Cancer, by Casper Kelly, but that came out in 2012.

I loved Spring Breakers. I think people missed its comic genius. Walking out of the theater, I heard people ask each other, "was that a comedy?" People I like did not ask that question.

Other than that it's been a slow year.

It's been slow because 2007 is running out of steam.

Knocked Up and Superbad solidified the transition from Frat Pack to Apatow Gang, while Tim And Eric Awesome Show Great Job changed television comedy, in 2007.

This year, Tim and Eric are apparently working one of their many rumored "next" shows, and This Is The End came out, which may turn out to be appropriately named.

Though World's End, from Simon Pegg, Edgar Wright and Nick Frost, should provide some comic relief this summer, until The Eric Andre Show returns in October, so really I'm just full of shit.

Oh yeah, I just remembered Arrested Development happened this year, but I also JUST remembered that right now, so...