Archive for May, 2011

a well-regulated metal militia

(Hoisted from, of all things, a discussion of the cultural significance of Def Leppard’s “Hysteria”, and slightly expanded for clarity.  Reposted here mostly because I’m amused by the idea of a deep metaphysical similarity between Bret Michels and Camille Paglia.)

On the one hand, there may be no argument in the world more intrinsically tiresome than “who is/is not metal?” On the other hand, props to UMD [another commentor] for making the case against Def Leppard without being a douche about it.

My 2 cents: if you don’t have an original manifesto to calibrate subsequent adherents against, you’re pretty much screwed when you talk about a “true” heritage of any cultural movement. This is why you can sometimes talk at least semi-intelligently about whether so-and-so is a Marxist or not, since Marx laid out his philosophy in a nice easy-to-digest way. Do you support worldwide revolution leading to control of the means of production by the class of industrial workers, a dictatorship of the proletariate and an eventual fading away of the state?  If yes, congratulations, you’re a Marxist. If no, you may well be influenced by Marx’s ideas, but a Marxist not so much. 

But much like feminism, metal didn’t have one single initial starting point, it had many overlapping ones: as a result, Andrea Dworkin and Sasha Grey could both credibly claim a legacy of “feminism”, and like it or not a whole bunch of wildly popular bands with ripped jeans and glossy production values could legitimately lay claim to a poppier “metal” sensibility that had its roots in Alice Cooper, AC/DC and Blue Oyster Cult in just the same way that Metallica grabbed the legacy of Sabbath, Accept and Motorhead and pummelled the mainstream into liking it…

snap judgement saturday returns

Worst-ever episode of your favorite (or close enough as to make no difference) TV series.  The one that you try very hard to forget ever happened, and which, if you think about it too long, makes you question your otherwise unhealthy devotion.

Don’t think too long about it, just go.

Oh, mine?  God, that’s all too easy: The Doctor’s Daughter, in which one of the cleverest bits of stunt casting ever in a 30-year-old tv series was wasted on a script that seemed to have been written by a 7-year-old.  Featuring Freema Agyeman’s absolute career low point, in which she has to fall into a mud puddle to loudly mourn the death of a man with a fishtank for a face, who she just met ten minutes ago.  Worst of all, they might yet bring the character back.