I have been on an absolute binge of watching the Syfy Channel. Their original movies are like crack to me; Piranhaconda, Sharktopus, Arachnoquake, Behemoth. I can’t get enough.
Then it hit me. I’m actually enjoying them. It’s not a mock enjoyment, it’s not camp or kitsch. I truly don’t care about the plots, the acting or the scenery. Somewhere deep inside of me there is some sort of satisfaction going on.
Maybe it was the news that they are remaking Dallas that did it. After enduring remakes of Charlie’s Angels and Hawaii Five-0 maybe the Dallas ad just made something inside me snap. TV and movies have become so completely barren of original ideas that perhaps anything even remotely creative will now suffice. When you think of the millions of dollars being spent in Hollywood producing movies that are such complete horseshit it boggles the mind. So many writers, so many studios, all so completely bankrupt when it comes to unique ideas. What the fuck happened?
I guess the problem is that people actually paid money to go see 21 Jumpstreet. The stars of the movie seem nice enough but in fairness they really should have been dragged off the studio lot, into the streets and set ablaze for accepting money to participate in that fucking film. Where do we as a society draw the line? They keep remaking every shitty TV show and movie from the 80’s and 90’s and we keep accepting it. When do we scoop up pitchforks and torches and storm the castle?
Perhaps the Syfy movies are the inoculation against this vapid disease. I saw a preview for the new remake of Total Recall and I stood up and yelled “No! No! A thousand times no!” until ushers swarmed in and ushered me out. They tried to convince me that I’d seen the movie already and liked it so I was sure to like it again. Isn’t that the fucking plot of Total Recall? Had I not just seen Ice Spiders they might have actually convinced me!
People need entertainment, more now than ever. Every generation our attention spans shrink and our need to be distracted increases. Unfortunately Hollywood has not kept up. In fact, I get the feeling they have thrown in the towel and are just coasting now. What passes for comedy now is just pathetic. Foul language and drug references are all you need these days. Wit has left the building. Have our senses really been dulled to the point where something subtle can no longer be offered up in the hopes that the audience will spend 3-4 seconds in thought before giving the metaphoric thumbs up or down on a preview? Are we doomed to watch Adam Sandler corral the next rising star and coerce him or her to appear with him in yet another horrendous movie again and again until he finally dies of complications of not being remotely funny anymore at the age of 50?
Maybe we deserve Danny Bonaduce and Barry Williams in Bigfoot. Maybe we should count ourselves lucky that they don’t do a song before being chased around for 2 hours by a 30 foot gorilla.
I guess what pisses me off most is my success as a writer really depends on a populace that has imagination and yet TV, music and movies are all dumbing people down, lowering their expectations, dulling their weirdness. I’ve never aspired to be mainstream but the number of independent thinkers and truly strange people has slowed to a trickle. Reality TV is actually popular and a show that highlights singers that would be otherwise engaged at a local Holiday Inn lounge consistently ranks at the top of the ratings.
The celebration of the mundane continues.
Fight the power. Channel your inner-Andy Kaufman and refuse to watch any remake. Just say no to the raping of every treasured memory from the past, be it The Brady Bunch, Starsky & Hutch or The Dukes of Hazzard.
I swear if Sarah Silverman tries to pitch herself as the new Mary Tyler Moore I’ll hang myself… although the Syfy Channel could probably make it work.