Jesse Jarnow

links of dubious usefulness, no. 11

o Wired’s cover feature on so-called Snack Culture (“movies, TV, songs, games… packaged like cookies or chips, in bite-size bits for high-speed munching”) is a clever trend piece, even if it seems sorta token. Stephen Johnson’s contrarian rebuttal, on the other hand, is more incisive, arguing that, based on our collective love of insanely long television serials like 24 and The Sopranos, our attention spans are actually getting longer.

o In regards to the latter, I quite enjoyed David Denby’s overview of the recent spate of avant-narrative play in movies. “In the past, mainstream audiences notoriously resisted being jolted,” he writes. “Are moviegoers bringing some new sensibility to these riddling movies?” Definitely, I think, though I’m sad that Denby didn’t chase his idea even deeper into the mainstream, where movies like Stranger Than Fiction are channeling Charlie Kaufman’s meta-narratives into ultimately cutesy and traditional romantic comedies.

o In regards to the former, I also recently landed back on the perennial Ronald & Nancy Reagan pro-drug mash-up, which circulated extensively via bootleg video back in the day. I vaguely remember my Dad having a copy. It’s sometimes easy to forget that videos like this not only existed before YouTube but that there was a fairly established underground network that existed to distribute them. This is how the original South Park episode, “The Spirit of Christmas,” circulated, too.

o In regards to all of it, if only the molecular sense, I’m fascinated by Lowe’s recent campaign to “try to inject a new ‘emoticon’ into teens’ text messaging vernacular in an effort to keep teens drinking milk.” Or, if you will: :-{). I’m sure the international moustache lobby & various facial hair advocacy groups are pleased that the milk people are saving their first-quarter propaganda budgets.
o In regards to none of the above, Richard Gehr is blogging. It’s one thing to expose the kidz to good music. It’s another to do the same for the adultz.

1 Comment

  1. R. Gehr says: - reply

    I like to think that Music for Grownups will put the “dub” back in dubious.