David Thompson
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February 28, 2020

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Sam

From Could be worse. :-):

The Doctor is, according to Fake Doctor Who, originally a little girl. A little black girl, of course, because Of Course. Then when she regenerated for the first time, she became a little Asian girl. Then a little blonde girl. And then finally a teenaged boy. A black teenaged boy, because, again, Of Course.

That the writers followed the progressive stack to the letter without so much as a interesting detour or subversion shows that they aren't merely dogmatic cunts, but talentless hack dogmatic cunts.

David

That the writers followed the progressive stack to the letter without so much as an interesting detour or subversion shows that they aren’t merely dogmatic cunts, but talentless hack dogmatic cunts.

Broadly speaking, there does seem to be an inverse relationship between wokeness and quality, whether creatively or intellectually. Woke students, for instance, tend to be among the more credulous and mentally inflexible. You can see the same pattern in the content of pop-culture sites such as io9, where an escalation in wokeness has gone hand in hand with a noticeable loss of critical competence. When so many conclusions are predetermined, based chiefly on the identity groups of those involved, I suppose discernment and mental autonomy are to a large extent redundant.

[ Edited. ]

Darleen

there does seem to be an inverse relationship between wokeness and quality

When you have to spend so much creative time genuflecting to the Party, sending your product to the Committee of Sensitivity Readers, and making sure that all demands suggestions are fully incorporated - even if contradictory - there is no room left for a great story.

Though, I suppose the expectation of a "great story" is just another settler colonial, White Supremacist conceit.

Fred the Fourth

Speaking of stories...
https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/360194/

And I thought I was going to be off-topic.

Hal

Nation plans memorial to mark solemn anniversary of Pearl Harbor.

Daniel Ream

an escalation in wokeness has gone hand in hand with a noticeable loss of critical competence

Because it's not creative art, it's propaganda. We're past the point of "subtle" propaganda, like the original Star Trek or Robocop, and well into the Gloriously Forward Into History, Young Patriots phase.

David

Because it’s not creative art, it’s propaganda.

I used to find, say, io9 mildly entertaining and occasionally insightful, but now the default template seems to be ‘Cultural Product X Has Women / Brown People / Gay People In It And Is Therefore Stunning And Important’. The question is simply begged and pretty much anything else is an after-the-fact rationalisation. Any contortion will do, it seems. And so, for instance, we’ve gone from critics who delighted in a knowledge of obscure canon and continuity, to critics applauding the “boldness” of destroying such things, and trashing long-established characters and relationships, on grounds that they might have impeded the innate gloriousness of women and brown people. The gushing coverage of Doctor Who, now woke but unwatched, being an obvious example.

And the dynamics in the comments – which are now much duller and more uniform – have changed accordingly.

It’s quite literally stupefying.

PiperPaul

"Because it's not creative art, it's propaganda."

But the low intellect dufuses think they're boldly creating art.

David

Because it’s not creative art, it’s propaganda.

And as Dave Cullen, Nerdrotic and others have shown, this lowering of standards has gone hand in hand with blaming “toxic fans” for not being sufficiently enthused by woke products. For instance, the director Tim Miller blamed “misogyny” and a “fear” of strong women for the failure of the latest Terminator film, rather than the fact that his film is uninspired, repetitive and boring. And despite the fact that the first two films in the franchise - a franchise that he’s crippled beyond repair - were successful precisely because of a strong, practically iconic, female character. We’ve even seen writers and directors pre-emptively blaming the audience, ahead of a film’s release, for its expected commercial failure. The vanity is quite extraordinary.

Though I suppose we should hardly be surprised that an industry famed to the point of cliché for its bitchiness and narcissism would readily succumb to an ideology for bitchy narcissists.

[ Edited. ]

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Meanwhile, speaking of propaganda, Lisa ups the ante on the WHO's wokeness, because obviously more important than identifying, tracking, and containing an apparent outbreak is making sure no ones feels are hurt.

WTP

and a “fear”

This one is really becoming very, very tiresome. I remember about 20 years ago, a young co-worker, a skinny vegan pale wheat-grass consuming waif of a male, explaining to me how men his age who were enlisting in the military because of 9/11 were acting out of "fear". I rolled my eyes. And over the last couple of decades now, this sort of reasoning is pulled out quite frequently by people on the left. Patriotism is "fear". Push back on academic brainwashing is "fear". Opposition to socialism is "fear". Sometimes they even go so far is to say it's fear that socialism will actually work (this time! Swearzies!). But of course, socialism isn't driven by fear, overly educated philosophers who sit in their ivory towers never taking on an objective challenge is not fear, single women turning to the state to support their miserable choices is not fear. And skinny vegan pale wheat-grass consuming waif of semi-maleness jumping out of their shoes when a co-worker gives a friendly toot of the car horn is not fear. Yet another language manipulation tactic that the media has adapted.

Darleen Click

"He's Hitler!"
[flips page]
"He's Putin's Puppet!"
[flips page]
"He bribed Ukraine!"
[flips page]
"He's Hitler!"

David

Yet another language manipulation tactic that the media has adapted.

Self-flattery is a cornerstone of leftism. Mislabelling and inversion crop up quite a bit too.

I was thinking the other day of how the notion of a “safe space” has somehow shifted from one in which a person can think and speak freely without the threat of censure or dismissal, to one in which uniformity is expected and everyone present must be neurotically censorious.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

"He's Hitler!"

Well, yeah, except for the salary of Chancellor and royalties from the post office for using his picture on stamps and getting himself declared non-taxable. Of course he made most of his money off the sale of his political screed and had several homes - say, you know who else claims that ?

Bernie is just like Hitler !

    Yeah, well all Hitler had was a lousy JU-52, dRumpF has custom built 747 AF1 - he is MegaHitler !

Hitler took money from corporations - Clinton is Hitler !

One can play this silly crap all damn day, it would be nice if they came up with something original.

David

UK residents who have views on decriminalising non-payment of the BBC license fee, and on the BBC more generally, may find this government consultation survey of interest.

Darleen

Who's in for a woke reboot of Cinderella?

WTP

Well, yeah, except for the salary of Chancellor and royalties from the post office for using his picture on stamps and getting himself declared non-taxable. Of course he made most of his money off the sale of his political screed and had several homes
...
One can play this silly crap all damn day, it would be nice if they came up with something original.

Dude wears shoes on BOTH of his feet. Just like Hitler.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...this government consultation survey of interest.

Having changed the VPN to a UK address, I answered, complete with UKsian spellings, I encourage everyone to do likewise, some of the items are gems...

Please provide any evidence you consider appropriate in answering these questions and any other information that you believe the Government should consider, especially where there is an impact on those with protected characteristics or the most vulnerable.

Of course.

WTP

UK residents who have views on decriminalising non-payment of the BBC license fee, and on the BBC more generally, may find this government consultation survey of interest.

UK residents? Uh-oh. Well it's their own fault they didn't stop me.

WTP

Heh...I found that one hmmm....interesting as well, Muldoon.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

I found that one hmmm....interesting as well

Yeah, either it seems they fear (or it is) those groups are most likely to be busted, or if there is non-payment the BBC might actually have to compete and put out stuff people want to watch and will no longer be able to put out woke PC dreck like the last iteration of "Dr. Whoke" (which apparently got fewer viewers than "Antiques Roadshow") and it will give PoCs and other favored groups a sad if nigh every show doesn't have them as the senior rozzer, barrister, judge, MP, etc, etc, etc.

Alan

Thanks, David.

*ping*

David

*ping*

Bless you, sir. May your smoothies have the satisfying thickness and audible plop of an M&S Super Berry Smoothie.

a different james

Transgender man, 34, demands right to be referred to as father of his child as he tells Appeal Court judges that decision to call him mother 'has caused psychological scarring'

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8074213/Transgender-journalist-34-demands-right-referred-father-child.html

Works for The Guardian, you say?

Quelle surprise.

[+]

satisfying thickness

Band name.

David

Works for The Guardian, you say?

Mr McConnell was mentioned here a while ago.

Darleen

Podcast enthusiast Fred McConnell, 27, is the sole male in a group of ten and tells us that, “After university I headed to Afghanistan to produce multimedia for a skateboard charity.” As one does.

Turns out the Guardian was actually able to make a the group 100% female. Diversity!

WTP

Transgender man, 34, demands right to be referred to as father of his child as he tells Appeal Court judges that decision to call him mother 'has caused psychological scarring'

I can't help but suspect that the persistence of these sort of stories is at least partly driven by a motivation to make language as meaningless as possible. Without solid definitions for words, our dictionaries become "living documents" and thus undermine all laws in which those words are written. Think about how invalidating the meaning of the word "mother" has potential to invalidate family law written from a time long, long ago...even a couple years...in manners as to make much of it virtually impossible to enforce, thus taking power away from the consent of the electorate and giving it to the judges and lawyers of the moment. Call me crazy (wouldn't be the first time) but I've begun to suspect tat there's more than psychosis going on here.

David

Turns out the Guardian was actually able to make the group 100% female. Diversity!

If memory serves, the Guardian trainees were quite pleased about their supposedly representative group, allegedly a snapshot of a generation, not including anyone with a penis.

TimT

” Broadly speaking, there does seem to be an inverse relationship between wokeness and quality, whether creatively or intellectually.

One thing I’ve noticed is artists tend to be only woke, only PC, only aesthetically enlightened, insofar as they need to be. Poets make plenty of jokes about how no one likes poets and how we’re overly reliant on arts grants, for instance. Similarly, a postmodernist/conceptualist artist doesn’t groove around their studio to high postmodernist/conceptualist music, unless *that’s* what they call Beyoncé now. There’s almost an effective, tacit acknowledgement that none of this stuff - postmodernism, political wokeness - is a load of old cobblers.

Douglas Heck

Greetings and a tip jar hit from Midland, Texas.

DG Heck

Re: "The Sedentary Adventures of Old, Fat Data"

What, "Big Data" was taken?

JML

Pinged!

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Broadly speaking, there does seem to be an inverse relationship between wokeness and quality, whether creatively or intellectually.

We have a late entry in this category...

TimT

” There’s almost an effective, tacit acknowledgement that none of this stuff - postmodernism, political wokeness - is a load of old cobblers.”

Whoa. Put my comment through preview and I still didn’t pick that up. Better would have been “There’s almost an effective tacit agreement that this stuff... is a load of old cobblers.“ Ah well. I think my point was clear enough anyway.

David

Greetings and a tip jar hit from Midland, Texas.
Pinged!

Bless you, sirs. Should someone, who will remain nameless, scratch your otherwise immaculate walnut flooring, may you discover a handy fix in the form of olive oil, thereby rendering said scratch nigh invisible.

David

The Critical Drinker reflects with his usual restraint and sensitivity on the super-woke-shitshow that is Doctor Who.

Clam

Before abandoning the series, I found myself missing Picard’s Romulan housekeeper, even though she sounds like Mrs Doyle from Father Ted.

You mean you missed the unicorn bunny pizza?

#NotEvenJoking #Episode7

David

You mean you missed the unicorn bunny pizza?

I find myself looking forward to the withering recaps by Script Doctor, RLM, etc., much more than I did the actual episodes, which managed to extinguish all but the most morbid curiosity.

Daniel Ream

We have a late entry in this category

I couldn't be arsed with Supergirl after the first season, but my impression was that there was a subtle revolt in the writers' room against the mandatory wokeness. Many episodes started with some kind of stock third-wave feminist trope and then proceeded to spend the episode deconstructing it and showing the real-world consequences. In particular I'm reminded of the episode where Cat Grant (the Perry White analog) mentions giving up her infant son for adoption in her twenties because getting pregnant would have derailed her career path. Over the course of the episode it's revealed that 1) she's been carrying massive guilt over this decision her entire life, 2) has been secretly sending the adoptive mother money for twenty years, and 3) her now adult son hates and resents her and wants nothing to do with her after the secret is exposed.

If one were trying to do a red-pilled version of Supergirl, I'm not sure what one would do differently.

Fred the Fourth

David,
Walnut oil, son. Walnut oil. More compatible with the floor, but mainly much more resistant to going rancid. I use it on cutting boards. For real durability you might look into mixtures with boiled linseed oil and carnauba wax.

David

Walnut oil, son.

I’ll bear that in mind should The Other Half someone scratch the floor again.

David

Many episodes started with some kind of stock third-wave feminist trope and then proceeded to spend the episode deconstructing it and showing the real-world consequences.

I suppose that’s a problem for the woke using woke tropes in drama. Assuming there’s any concession to realism, any plausible follow-through, unhappy consequences become hard to avoid. Which may explain why, at least in political commentary, such consequences are carefully ignored.

And by the way, I’m impressed that you’re sufficiently secure in your masculinity to confess to watching Supergirl.

pst314

Unicorn bunny pizza?

David

Unicorn bunny pizza?

I had to Google:

Picard and Soji arrive on Nepenthe, a planet with “bunnycorns” which are bunnies with unicorn horns,

The rest you can deduce.

Daniel Ream

I suppose that’s a problem for the woke using woke tropes in drama. Assuming there’s any concession to realism

That's just it - there are plenty of shows like Sex in the City and Girls that depict a fantasy version of go-girl empowerment but carefully elide any of the negative consequences. Supergirl has been right on this from day one: I knew something was up when, in the premiere, the obligatory save-the-plane scene happens not because saving a crashing plane is something a superhero ought to do, but because Kara's sister is on the plane (Kara is shown to be ready to walk away from the disaster until she realizes this); and afterwards, her feeling of elation comes not from saving a bunch of people but because everyone is looking at her and talking about how great she is.

Much of the first season involves Kara doing superhero things primarily because she wants to prove she's as good as her cousin and not out of any more noble purpose. If the writers were trying to portray her as a petulant, self-absorbed teenager with a chip on her shoulder masking her insecurities I'm not sure what they would have done differently. The Laura Van der Voort, Dean Cain and Helen Slater cameos were a cute touch though.

I’m impressed that you’re sufficiently secure in your masculinity to confess to watching Supergirl.

Ten seasons of Smallville, remember? I'm a massive Superman nerd. Honestly, after the first couple of episodes I found myself hoping they were actually leading up to an adaptation of the New 52 Supergirl but I was ultimately disappointed.

WTP

Unicorn bunny pizza

Rumored to be the absolute worst album ever made. No one even knows who recorded it. Shortly after its release, Herculean efforts were made to destroy every known copy. Legend had it that Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin both claimed to have heard the first six bars of the harpsichord intro of the first song from side A, the name of which is also lost to history, having been played by Wolfman Jack on XERF out of Mexico one cold night in the winter of 1963. There's even a story that both Don McLean's "The Day The Music Died" and Vicki Lawrence's "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia" hold cryptic clues about that incident. But no one can prove it ever happened. Wolfman denied it to the day he died. In the late 1990's another rumor was going around that William Shatner had the one remaining copy kept at an undisclosed location that will only be revealed after he's been dead for 50 years plus one day. I doubt I'll live long enough to find out the truth. Sigh.

I gotta find another job...

David

Ten seasons of Smallville, remember?

Dear God, that’s dedication. Or certifiable, one or the other. My being mildly entertained by the Thunderbirds Are Go! remake suddenly seems respectable.

And would someone call a cab for WTP? I think he’s had enough for one evening.

WTP

And would someone call a cab for WTP? I think he’s had enough for one evening.

Yeah...if anyone has some code that needs debugging, rewritten, redesigned, etc. that would be great as well.

Steve E

Picard and Soji arrive on Nepenthe, a planet with “bunnycorns” which are bunnies with unicorn horns,

Well Star Trek did give us the Tribble. Are bunnycorns such a stretch?

Hal

Picard and Soji arrive on Nepenthe, a planet with “bunnycorns” which are bunnies with unicorn horns,

Well Star Trek did give us the Tribble. Are bunnycorns such a stretch?

Tribbles? Yer forgetting this one with a unihorn . . .

Squires

I doubt I'll live long enough to find out the truth.

Wesley Willis called it “Unlistenable and un-eatable”, and Boyd Rice once said of the album, “Who?”, having unwittingly sampled several tracks without realizing they were recordings of music. Clearly bootlegs are out there, or Shatner has traveled in stranger circles than we’ve imagined.

Sam

Honestly I’m tempted to scorn watch supergirl after Daniel’s comments. Need something to fill the time before F1 starts up again.

Daniel Ream

if anyone has some code that needs debugging, rewritten, redesigned

How are you with containerized Ruby on Rails applications?

Honestly I’m tempted to scorn watch supergirl after Daniel’s comments

I can't say the scorn-to-screen-time ratio is worth it, but it's certainly multi-layered. On the surface there's the pandering to the target demographic, and underneath there's some ugly truths about that demographic.

For a higher cringe-to-episode-count, try Netflix's H2O: Just Add Water, the moral of which appears to be that if you're given magical mermaid powers, it's entirely reasonable to use them to be a complete and utter shit to your friends, family and classmates.

Squires

...if you're given magical mermaid powers...

Powers like the ability to lure sailors into water, and not having human genitals?

Do they often take cues from the writers of Knightboat?

https://youtu.be/uoV1-fsFCmw

pst314

Picard and Soji arrive on Nepenthe, a planet with “bunnycorns” which are bunnies with unicorn horns

Sheesh.

David

Sheesh.

I think I might have forgiven unicorn bunny pizza if the writers had managed to write a decent yarn. But as so often with Alex Kurtzman projects, the overall effect of the writing and editing is almost nihilistic. The writers don’t seem to feel obliged to make their own narratives make sense, or be in any way compelling. It’s slapdash. There’s a lack of competence, a lack of care. Accents are incongruous and distracting; characters make bizarre decisions in practically every episode; objects of plot importance given to one character inexplicably appear in the possession of another, despite the two being separated by 40,000 light years; and on and on.

It’s as though the script editor, assuming they had one, just gave up in despair.

Clive

Have put some spendable love in your tip jar. Keep up the great work, David.

David

Have put some spendable love in your tip jar.

Bless you, sir. Should the phone ring during the exuberant final cycle of your washing machine, may you remember that said machine has a never-before-used pause button.

David

And again, thanks to all who’ve hit the tip jar, or subscribed, or done shopping via the Amazon links. Including all those much too shy to say hello. It’s much appreciated and is what keeps this place here.

Damn Yankee

[sidles over to tip jar]

*kerching* *kerching *kerching*

[blushes furiously]

[flees]

David

[blushes furiously]
[flees]

Bless you, madam. When responding to PayPal donations with improbable, rather convoluted blessings, may you have remembered to make a list of said blessings before you publish the fundraising post, thereby avoiding last-minute anxiety as you try to think of new ones. Unlike your host.

mlrosty

make a list of said blessings before you publish the fundraising post,

You can't stop now. It's a tradition. :-)

David

You can’t stop now. It’s a tradition.

After hundreds of these things, I’m surprising myself.

Governor Squid

"...but I was ultimately disappointed."

I was about to say that this should be the motto for the 21st Century, but upon further reflection, it's probably a universal statement on the human condition.

Happy Friday, everybody!

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