Also! Just today I remembered that it wasn't until I was in junior high that I pretty much couldn't stay awake for movies. My co-worker and I were talking about The Dark Crystal. He was saying that he had this theory that if you saw the movie when you were a kid for the first time, you probably loved it but if you saw it as an adult for the first time, you probably hated it -- the age you were the first time you saw it has a lot to do with how much you liked it. Well, I remember it always playing in the background at slumber parties but I could never stay awake for a full movie, so I never really saw the whole thing, or at least, not in order, and not enough to really remember it. So, I will need to move it up in the Netflix queue so that I can watch it and see how I like it. We agreed that I would be an interesting anomalous test case.
However, I have been watching Dead Like Me in the middle of the night, episodes on the watch now function on Netflix. Did I talk about this in my blog? I can't remember. Anyway, it's a coming-of-age story TV show that was on for like maybe one or two seasons, with mixed reviews. I remember there being a lot of buzz about it when it was on though -- on the radio and stuff, interviews etc. (I do remember though that someone on Fresh Air said that Mandy Patinkin talked like he was a beat poet and it sounded unnatural. Interesting. He didn't sound too beat poet-y to me. Whatever.) The catch is that even though it's about an apathetic girl who gets killed in an accident at 18, it is still a coming of age story. In death, she is appointed the role of one of multiple grim reapers, who escort people into the next phase of the (after)life. I like that a main thing about the show is that what it's really about is that even though she's dead, we see her sort of go through the process of becoming a person. (When I was in high school I remember hearing someone say, "We never really stop becoming a person." That has really stuck with me.) This idea of the taking over the "office" of death is interesting. Of course, it is nothing new, and I know plenty of movies and books have touched on this. But specifically, the way they do it in the show reminds me of Piers Anthony's Incarnations of Immortality series, where people take on these offices of things like Time, Fate, Death, etc. And since they're formally humans, when they take over the job after the previous person who held the position leaves, there's a learning curve where they have to figure out what they're doing. And that affects things. So the woman who takes over the office of Fate, she accidentally cuts her strings wrong and Death comes and pounds on her door and gets mad at her. He says that a bunch of people senselessly died, WTF did she do? And so on. Very compelling. I am a sucker for the whole idea of taking something mystical or philosophically big and turning it into something banal and humorous. Why can't I think of any good examples right now? Grrrr. For some reason, what comes to my mind is Woody Allen's Love and Death. You know, Swedish art film/Russian literature made silly and ridiculous.
I guess some of my favorite stuff is really about juxtaposition. I feel like that's the theme that I keep coming back to in things that I find compelling and things that really make me laugh too: robbing a bank and getting caught up in paperwork (wasn't that in a different W. Allen film? Whatever.) -- Heavy metal with ballerinas. Hippos in tutus.
In un-related other news, I walked into Big Hair and demanded a haircut. When I came into work the next day, a customer at Quimby's said that I look like Rachel Maddow:
It is 3:34am. Good night/morning.