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Posts Tagged ‘Pop Culture’

Go, West September 14, 2009 2 Comments

Oh dear, Mr. West. You made a big boo-boo last night, didn’t you? Arguably, before last night you were the ego-maniacal but kinda fun and spontaneous loud-mouth who said mad things and livened up award shows and red carpets with your ranting and ravings. But now you’re a bully that picks on teenage girls which has endeared you to absolutely nobody. Everyone watching, both at the venue and at home, wanted to envelope Lil Taylor Swift in a collective, protective hug. Besides the mere fact that you got onstage, the worst thing that you said was “…..I’m gonna let you finish….” Hmmm, “I’m gonna LET you finish”. ????? You’ll let the person who won the award actually finish? Wow, that’s big of you. How about not interrupting in the God-damn first place? It wasn’t even your category! You used to be SO relevant; now you’re ‘Crazy Uncle Kanye’ – the music industry equivalent of the insane relative you dread to see coming, who spouts conspiracy theories, tells racist/sexist jokes that are NOT funny at really inappropriate times and thinks the neighbour’s cat is spying on him.

Listen, Beyonce is one of the smartest, most respected, versatile, talented and beautiful performers in the world. Even people who don’t like her music like HER. There’s very few artists that get away with that but Beyonce is one of them. She’s also married to one of the most powerful men in the entertainment industry. Basically, she doesn’t need you to stick up for her. You embarrassed her as well – I didn’t know who to cringe more for (Ms. Swift wins by a nose, since she was on a stage at the time.) But Beyonce, bless her, is a classy, savvy woman and pretty much saved the day. Fair play to Taylor Swift – I don’t know much about her but I think I would have either burst into angry, mortified tears or hit you over the head with that rather heavy looking Moonman thingie. Or both. But she remembered her training and kept her composure. Mind you, I would have LOVED if it had been Pink on the receiving end of this rude stage-crash. She would have kicked you in the balls. The thing is, I doubt you would have got up uninvited like that if it had been Pink. Taylor was easy pickings. It was cowardly. (Update – you know what it was like? It was like watching a live, MTV adaptation of ‘Carrie’ – admittedly, this sight was much less traumatic than the film. Here’s this very young, seemingly naive and sweet girl, who’s being crowned by her peers and just when she’s settling into the idea that the cool kids like her, here comes the bucket of pig’s blood to ruin her moment. But this time the pig’s blood was in the form of you, Mr. West. Thankfully, there was no telekinetic massacre afterwards.)

The category of ‘Best Female Pop Video’ is won by the artist with the most votes from the public. It’s a democracy, not a Kanye-ocracy, man. I quite liked you when you said things like, “George Bush doesn’t care about black people” during the Katrina crisis (Even though I would correct you by saying he just didn’t care about POOR people, regardless if they’re black or white) because sometimes it takes an off-the-cuff, shocking remark like that to jolt people into action. And that was actually IMPORTANT and SERIOUS enough to speak out about. But a video music award????? Really???? If you’d stormed up there to say something about how people are losing their jobs and houses in this crappy economy, I’d have SOME respect for you but…THAT was your message????? That Beyonce was robbed of an award?? (And she ended up winning the big one anyway, you lunatic)


I’m all for the freedom to say whatever you wish, however daft it may be, but you took it way too far. There was loads of press outside and you could have told them your opinion on who should’ve won what and they would have been happy to lap up your sermonizing on all things pop culture and how things should work in ‘Kanye-Land’. You didn’t have to turn that 19-year-old’s shining moment into a real-life version of that nasty dream where you’re standing in front of a huge amount of people and end up with egg on all over your face. I’m praying for you to win a big award really soon because I’ll bet a kajillion dollars that one of the guys from Green Day or John Mayer will boot it up there and pull down your low-riding pants or something. Next time you’re up for a gong, watch your back at the podium and wear clean knickers.

You’re a God-fearing man, right, Mr. West? I mean, you’re always thanking him. Then the words “do unto others” shouldn’t be unfamiliar to you. Take heed. Oh, and you owe Swift and Knowles a BIG donation to the charity of their choice to compensate for your behavior. And be quick about it. As quick as you were to hop, like a little self-absorbed bratty bunny, to grab that mic and spout nonsense at two young women’s expense. Next time something don’t go your way, just call a waaaaaambulance, mate.

Dig deep, you gay fish, you!

The Female Body Image in Popular Media March 25, 2009 11 Comments

This is a subject that I’m hearing more and more about. I was too young to be aware of it in the late 70s or 80s but I do remember the stir that Kate Moss and ‘Heroin Chic’ caused in the 90s. In the late 90s and early 2000s, the trend swung back (as trends do) to curves – Jennifer Lopez, for example – but in truth, thin has always been in. Often, beauty buys what money can’t – admiration, leeway and popularity – and has done since the dawn of time. I want to look closer at the impact of these images and attempt to discover, in my own small way, why society handles them so very badly. The mediums of movies, TV, magazines and comic books are constantly under pressure to explain themselves, even as we continue to feed the machine. But why pass the buck? If there’s no demand, then there’s no supply.

Taking comics – or graphic novels if you prefer but, let’s be honest, they’re comics – these drawings of superwomen are exaggerated fantasies. There’s nothing demeaning or wrong about that. It’s actually quite complimentary to my gender. Yes, the outfits are skimpy and figure hugging but these women are like modern day Sheela na Gigs; breasts proudly on display, with firm buttocks, rounded child-bearing hips and lean, muscular arms and legs. Do I actually look like any of these females? Ummm, no, not really but I identify with the power that this physical form represents. When I hear criticism of the way women are represented in comics, I tend to think two things:

1 – I don’t hear these people moan about the fact that few women look like Botticelli’s Venus, or Johannes Vermeer’s Girl with the Pearl Earring, or other paintings of beautiful women.

People tend to get excited when a naked chick comes out of her shell

People tend to get excited when a naked chick comes out of her shell

2 – I also don’t know a lot of guys whose physique looks like this: