Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

I'll have pictures of our costumes tomorrow, but before the end of the day I wanted to post a link to this article about Halloween music at Wired. Good stuff on the list, but there's a great playlist posted in the comments section.

I think I like KC and the Sunshine Band's original version of "I'm Your Boogie Man" more than White Zombie's version. Isn't that strange? The video is terrific, though.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

"Librarians" fired over League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Last week, according to ICV2, two library employees were fired for taking a copy of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen off a "hold" for an 11-year old girl. I don't have all the facts, but much can be inferred by some of the comments made on the two news pages linked in the ICV2 article.

It appears that the two were staff members, not librarians. That seems likely, as I can't imagine a professional librarian doing this.

It made me very happy to see so many of the commenters come to the defense of the First Amendment and the role of libraries in protecting it for everyone.

Some of the commenters suggest that the Black Dossier was the title in question, even though it's the first book of the series that's flipped through in the news video.

That leads me to what I'm most upset about with this story: the lack of attention paid to getting things right in news stories. Are these ladies actually librarians (because the general view is that everyone who works in a library is one)? Did they ask? Did they look at what is actually inside the book in question? Note the headline: "Librarians fired over porn." Someone involved needs to learn something about either graphic novels or pornography.

I've had some experience with TV news reporters covering a story, perhaps even being told in detail about something, then seeing the results that are broadcast missing the point completely. This seems to be the case with the majority of stories dealing with subcultures not entirely in the mainstream, like gamers or Trekkies.

If they can't get simple facts correct in these stories, how much stock can be put into others?

Monday, October 26, 2009

"Recent" DVD releases

It's hard to believe that it's been more than two months since my last update. The time has flown by. Between classwork and house work, it's been busy here.


They're going to take away my DVD Guru status because for most of this year I haven't been keeping up with the new releases the way I used to. I check with the usual sources every so often and I've seen some surprises (this post has been in draft stage since June...).

At the end of April this year, the 1971 film Johnny Got His Gun was finally released on DVD, another of my Most Wanted discs. I never saw this on TV and didn't know anything about the movie or the novel. My first introduction to it was the surreal and disturbing scenes included in Metallica's video for "One", as Glenn Erickson mentions in the review linked above.

I had always admired Dalton Trumbo for his stand against the Hollywood blacklist and his work on Spartacus. Seeing the fever-dream images from "One" sparked my curiousity, but the lack of a legal release (or even a readily-available bootleg) had kept me from seeing Johnny Got His Gun all these years. I'm glad someone made the decision to approve this release. I'll have to be in the right mood to watch it, though -- it certainly isn't a feel-good movie.

More DVD news soon!