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We're All Mad Here: <em>Inception</em> & Dom Cobb's Crazy Lying Dead Wife

This post includes spoilers for Inception. It also discusses domestic violence.

There are multiple interpretations of Inception, but for the basis of this discussion I'm going to take the movie at face value. The central story is about Dominic Cobb needing to come to terms with the tragic circumstances of his wife's suicide. Once he is able to let go of his guilt and...

Pop Pedestal: Wednesday Addams

This week on Pop Pedestal we feature Wednesday Addams, the most relatable living dead girl around. We all could have used a childhood friend like her, am I right?

Dark of the Matin

The most annoying way in which this film tries to encapsulate 2011 is by making its characters as media-saturated as possible. In the twenty-first century, we have apparently transcended platitudes simply by becoming conscious of their presence in our lives. These hip young New Yorkers with their telephone cameras and their rainbow parties are too self-aware to internalize movie...

Five Reasons to Not See The Help: A Round-Up of Responses

Okay, I haven't seen The Help, which hit theaters yesterday and web banners way before that, nor have I read the book by Kathryn Stockett it's based on. But based on the critical reviews it's gotten, even prior to the film release, I don't think I'll be checking out either. Here's why...

Douchebag Decree: New York Post

The New York Post likens the US stock market to "a hooker's drawers" with a "hooker" on its cover. Meanwhile, Rupert Murdoch is back in town.

BiblioBitch: Stop it with the Monster Mashups Already!

Yesterday, we received a copy of Grave Expectations: The Classic Tale of Love, Ambition, and Howling at the Moon in the mail. Yes, it's another monster mashup—a book created by taking a well-known story and adding a supernatural blood-and-guts-fest. Now I'll admit to chuckling at the first of these, Seth Grahame-Smith's Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, but the two years since...

Stage Left: "What Did I Clearly Say?": Transgression and Punishment in INTO THE WOODS

Like many fairy tales, at least in the retellings we recognize today, a very strong theme of Into the Woods is morality—actions that are right and actions that are wrong; rewards for the former and punishment for the latter. What's interesting, though, and what I want to look at today, is what kinds of actions are punished.

We're All Mad Here: Of Course We Should Dislike This Character! She's Crazy!

One consequence of this kind of character presentation is that audience members can experience a sense of "she deserved it" when something bad happens. Take, for example, the domestic violence depicted in the Schuester kitchen, where Will grabs Terri, shoves her aggressively against a counter, and yanks at her clothing, all while she pleads with him to stop. This scene was not read as domestic...

Murder, She Blogged: Reality Calling

Since this series is about detective narratives in pop culture, this post was originally going to be about CSI. But at time of writing (Tuesday afternoon) everyone in our office in London came home early because of fears of another night of riots and looting, and so it's just too hard right now to set aside real-life relations between the police and the people to talk about fiction....

B-Sides: Jump-start Queer Record Label Punk Start My Heart!

Punk Start My Heart began as a punk booking agency run by Sheana Corbridge and Marlena Chavez dedicated to promoting musicians of color and queer artists for shows around Portland, Oregon. Inundated with requests from superb bands on the Internet, they came up with a DIY innovation: Not Enough!, a festival designed for queer artists to get together, collaborate, and come up with new art and...

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