Knowing When to Not: Discretion is the Better Part of Opinions

I went into Mad Max: Fury Road a little bit too strong. Looking back now, it was 100% a nerd territorial thing. In 2015, I loved the idea of Mad Max, despite that I’d only truthfully enjoyed about five-twelfths of the existing films: let’s say half of Mad Max, three-quarters of The Road Warrior, and zero of Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. But along with John Carpenter movies and the Verhoeven scifi trilogy, it was part of the canon of the science-fiction cinema I loved dutifully. So much so that I excused the rape scene in The Road Warrior, simply because it was part of my identity to have said “this movie is important to me,” like others did. … More Knowing When to Not: Discretion is the Better Part of Opinions

Chasing Endgame: “Star Wars” Between the Legends

Despite its roughly two hour runtime, Star Wars: The Force Awakens is in fact a three-year long film — experienced before, during, and after. In this time, not only do fan theories rise and bake like clay, but the founts for these theories are arguably overinterpreted to suit them. Supreme Leader Snoke is overestimated because he is, again, three years in existence, despite actually existing for a few minutes. It’s unfortunate, but the similarly overblown “fan backlash” is essential to the metanarrative of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, now, and is mentioned here because an attempt to psychoanalyze the fans in question raises an issue about modern storytelling: the point. … More Chasing Endgame: “Star Wars” Between the Legends

Equal Opportunity Badassery

When I was a small child, I saw enough of action movies and thought enough of action movies (a lot and a little, respectively) to codify with an emotional association the ubiquitous signage of real life, that toughness and even violence were the language of an ideal human. Not only did these movies center-stage their violent hero, they gave them an oversized task: the ultimate actualization in the context of their world. These fucking great guys could do anything, unlike the other, less heteronormative bit players around them (though usually racially homogeneous, it was about gender, body type, or archetype). I know I’m not alone in this, as we were all small children once, and many continue to be. The wild thing was, I didn’t know just how much those movies had impacted my thinking until after I graduated college, and how much that thinking needed to change. … More Equal Opportunity Badassery

Male Metamorphosis: Becoming Post-2017

It’s a generalization to say that all men sexually assault women, but it is also true that a rapist doesn’t weigh victimization heavily enough to not sexually assault, eschewing a level of empathy requisite to choosing differently, and that’s a level which rises and falls as we sweep across the breadth of men, rapist or not, if we begin with the generalization that one cannot fully know the experience of another. It’s not just that the capacity for rape exists in all of us, it’s that we don’t understand that capacity. And while eliminating sexual assault isn’t the sole component of our more equal future, it is, as we close the year 2017, an urgent rallying point. … More Male Metamorphosis: Becoming Post-2017

Introduction

With The Utopia Blueprint, we’ll piece together one possible future bit by bit, by examining works of media and current events which suggest not only the makeup of an egalitarian tomorrow, but our path to reach it. … More Introduction