Tag Archives: AMC

The Walking Dead 3.7: When The Dead Come Knocking (Isn’t That All The Time?)

Hosted By Fashion and Entertainment Editor Joseph Lamour

Last week, Michonne showed her selflessness when she took baby formula to a group of people she never met who, in this world, could just deign to kill her on sight. Rick’s camp doesn’t know that she’s Andrea’s friend, which would have been helpful in getting that trust from Rick’s group right in the beginning. That, added with the fact that she cared for a sick Andrea for four months, only reinforces how good a person she truly is.

I’ve been looking very forward to the Michonne/Good Guys meeting, especially since Andrea peaced out for plumbing and Zombie Mortal Kombat nights with the kids. I’ve been less excited so for the Glenn and Maggie/Bad Guys meeting, which proved to be rather tense. This week, it’s date night! Just me and my best mate Carly Mitchell take a look at what happens when these two camps finally start to mesh.

* Ahem… Lady Mary Crawley Has Something To Say…”

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The Walking Dead Roundtable 3.6: “Hounded”

Hosted By Fashion and Entertainment Editor Joseph Lamour

In this week’s Walking Dead, we see Michonne proving why she’s so badass, yet again; we are reminded why Merle is oh so creepy; and we are shown, yet again, that Andrea is not thinking clearly enough in a world where people drag around dead bodies on leashes, keep their decaying loved ones in barns, and men shoot their best friends in the face to protect them from everyone. Carly Mitchell, Kiki Smith, and Jeannie Chan join me to analyze the whos, whats, and whys of this zombie world we see this week.

*I’ll let River Song say what we don’t want in the comments this time:

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11.15.12 Links Roundup

As I have watched “The Walking Dead,” however, I have been disappointed to discover that, while the writers occasionally take a moment to comment on the state of gender — and of race — in this new world, in the end they leave these issues to die and reconstitute a world in which white men rule. Men of color are reduced to occupying a nebulous space, and women (with rare exception) are to be protected. Even more pernicious, any power that women have usually comes to them in the old-fashioned, stereotypical way of manipulating the men in their lives into doing what they want them to do.

I’m not sure if it is a failure of the writers of the TV show (and yes, I know, the show is based upon previously written graphic novels), but surely, if the writers could take time out for the characters to constantly question and talk incessantly about how they are supposed to live a civilized life in a world that has risen from the ashes, couldn’t the characters have spent more time trying to figure out how to behave, now that gender and race should no longer be factors? Why has the world of “The Walking Dead” turned into a white patriarchy?

After Rick is rescued by Morgan and Duane, it’s as if racial reality disappears. Rick leaves to search for his wife, Lori, and son, Carl. Despite the fact that Atlanta is 54 percent African-American, when Rick arrives in a deserted Atlanta, he is swarmed by an all-white mob of walkers — in downtown Atlanta. That was my first moment of cognitive dissonance — in Atlanta, where were the black walkers? — but I let it go as I let myself get more into the story.

To be honest, the locations are not too bad. Buildings are similar to those in Iran, the houses are not that different, the bazaar is quite like the actual shopping centre in south Tehran. Banners, placards and signs are in Persian and many characters actually speak the language, although some with accents.

There are silly mistakes, however. In one scene, for example, the protagonist Tony Mendez (Affleck) says “salam” at the end of his conversation with an Iranian official. Salam means hello in Persian, not goodbye.

Minor mistakes aside, the film takes a black and white view towards Iranians, like many other western films about Iran. It portrays them as ugly, poor, strictly religious, fanatical and ignorant – almost in line with the young revolutionaries behind the hostage-taking at the US embassy in Tehran after the 1979 Islamic revolution, which the film is about. The only nice Iranian in the film is the Canadian ambassador’s maid.

The whole experience is like asking an Iranian who has never been to the US to make a film (let’s say in Cuba) about the Columbine high school massacre. You’ll probably end up watching a film in which all Americans are crazy, have a gun at home and are ready to shoot their classmates.

During an interview on “Democracy Now” West criticized Al Sharpton, MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry, and frequent guest host Michael Eric Dyson for “selling their souls” in exchange for insider access to Obama.

“They want to turn their back to poor and working people. And it’s a sad thing to see them as apologists for the Obama administration in that way, given the kind of critical background that all of them have had at some point.”

The activist also made a shot at the MSNBC personalities lack of dedication to black interests by inviting “them back to the black prophetic tradition after Obama leaves.”

West didn’t hold back when it came to Obama either. During the interview he called President Obama a “Rockefeller republican in blackface.”

If the move out of New York has softened the glow on Lin’s celebrity, it hasn’t softened the ferocity with which the sport comes for him. From the playground to the Ivy League to the NBA, the eyes on America’s breakout Asian-American basketball player felt the same.

“I’ve always been a target,” Lin says. “Everyone looks me and says, ‘I’m not going to let that Asian kid embarrass me. I’m going to go at him.’ That’s how it’s been my whole life. This has been different, though. Now, I was on the scouting report. People started to pay attention to what I could and couldn’t do.

“But a target? I was used to that. I’m not saying I get everyone’s best shot, but I would say people don’t want to be embarrassed by me because of my skin color.”

The Walking Dead 3.4: “Killer Within”

Hosted By Fashion and Entertainment Editor Joe Lamour

The best and the worst thing about the zombie genre is that anyone can become a casualty at a moments notice. This doesn’t particularly matter to me (usually) because I feel zombie movie characters are secondary to the carnage packed into an hour and a half flick.

With a show like The Walking Dead, however, character building is as important as the carnage. We grow to love (or hate) characters over seasons full of episodes. This makes for great drama, and a more real feeling of sadness when a death occurs. At least, that’s what should happen…

Carly Neely, Kiki Smith, Kenneth Hwynn, Jeannie Chan, Jenn Kim and I mull over this week’s plusses and its many, many minuses.

* Help to keep the comment area a no spoiler zone.

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The Walking Dead: “Woo” (Roundtable Prologue)

By Fashion and Entertainment Editor Joe Lamour

Last week, we welcomed The Walking Dead back with a chorus of hurrays, whoas and ewwws. Our newly assembled roundtable covered the highs (Michonne and all the beheading;), the lows (Lori, of course; an axe to the shin came in a close second), and usual stuff we’ve all come to expect: the usual lack of dialogue for T-Dog. Jeannie and I could only recall a single word and some noises (“Woo!”) this episode, but commenter Pellnore retained more:

You guys might have missed some of T-Dog’s input. For one he was talking about acquiring fresh water for the group. He also said some stuff when they were on the move. Not a whole lot but he wasn’t completely silent.

After reading Pellinore’s comment, I fuzzily recall that he spoke some additional dialogue, but I also wanted to know why I couldn’t remember anything else he said other than that woo. Compare him to other characters, since I could recall more said by others. Since I couldn’t find a script for the episode yet, I watched the episode again to see what we all missed, and how his lines stack up to other minor characters, like Carol and Beth. In related news, you may now refer to me as “that person”:

A tally of dialogue for (from the top) T-Dog (IronE Singleton), Beth (Emily Kinney) and Carol (Melissa Suzanne McBride) in “The Walking Dead.”

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Mad Men: 4th Season, Same M.O.

by Latoya Peterson

Modified Mad Men

Mad Men is back, and while I’ve given up all hope of a character of color with any kind of context, I still want to know what happens to Sal (I know, I know, he’s written out), Joan, and Peggy.

(Yes, I know Mad Men is about a bunch of white people in the era of segregation. No that does not let the writers off the hook for this bootleg ass characterization. I’ve written pages and pages on this, but I’ll sum it up in two words: Rachel Menken.  She provided context without becoming a main character.  That’s all we’re asking for people.)

Don argues with his new (and ethnic?) maid Cecelia.  My friends and I couldn’t come to a conclusion if she was coded Italian or Puerto Rican, with more votes for Italian.

Characters of Color may be out of luck in this episode, but there was an errant civil rights reference: Andrew Goodman, one of the civil rights workers murdered in Mississippi in 1964, was referenced by Don’s Betty-clone on the date. She mentioned they were killed, but doesn’t go into the details.  The three workers (Goodman, James Chaney, and Michael Schwerner) were lynched by the members of the Ku Klux Klan, but the murders were facilitated by local law enforcement. It was a pivotal moment in the civil rights movement, one in which the nation had to face the facts that the racial climate  in America led to the deaths of three idealistic twenty-one year olds, who were murdered and stuffed into a dam.

However, the reference struck me as a bit strange.  Many American Jews were fixtures in the civil rights movement, and the “Freedom Summer” event was reported to have one of the highest levels of participation by American Jews.  However, in Mad Men, most discussion of Jews is framed as anti-Semitic jokes,  open curiosity, or thinly veiled contempt.  Don’s companion mentions Goodman’s identity lightly, as if she were noting an interesting non-sequitur about someone who died in a freak accident, not race related violence. While she was uncomfortable, it was more random table conversation than any actual reflection or fear.  But the scene did remind me of something – It is important to note that while I often point to Rachel Menken as an onscreen representation of being able to give voice to minority characters in the style of Mad Men‘s created world, her appearance began and ended in season one. And since then, the lens has continued to close, leaving less and less room for the voice of the “other” to be heard.  Sal is gone; the alleged “greek chorus” (Hollis), who people seemed to hope would have a larger role, is back in the old building; Don is selling the house and employed a new housekeeper, leaving Carla’s fate uncertain; and even the extras appear to be on a fade.

But no worries – through small references and slight of hand, the writers will allude hey, we know there were black people then. Unfortunately, that’s as far as it goes.  And where there is so much potential to develop plots that deal with race, the attitudes of the writers are eerily current.  It’s okay to remember the past, but it is verboten to apply historical events to our current realities.

Remembering the past is easy – it’s learning from our history (not erasing it, not sanitizing it) that’s hard.

“Fuck Pete Campbell!”: Mediations on Mad Men and Whiteness

by Latoya Peterson



*Spoilers ahead*

I knew for a while I wanted to write a piece on Mad Men and race. After Double X accepted the piece, I re-immersed myself in the two previous seasons, wanting to make sure that I did not miss a single reference to race or a character of color. However, digesting that much Mad Men at over a three week stretch was a horrific challenge – the world painted by Matthew Weiner is grim, and as each episode marched on, I found myself wanting to step through the screen and grab a scotch and a smoke myself.

Instead, being a nonsmoker and a light drinker, I chatted with G.D. of PostBourgie while watching:

me: I am going to die if I keep watching so much mad men
G. D.: lol
son
we’re doing our weekly recaps
which season are you on?
me: about to cross into 2
me: My lord
Pete Campbell is a little shit bag
Can’t they kill him off?
G. D.: pete’s…complicated.
me: Pete is a shit bag. A total pile of privileged fecal matter. All the characters on mad men are fucked up, but he has no redeeming qualities.
G. D.: keep watching
me: I’m up to the Nixon election
You know
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