- Is Ron Charles at The Washington Post showing us the future of book reviews? At the least, his is laugh-out loud funny.
- The Onion on the pride of the uninformed right. Would be funny if it weren't true.
- A doc about the making of Bruce Springsteen's “Darkness on the Edge of Town”? I'm there. If it ever gets here.
- Everyone's second-favorite French gangster, Vincent Cassel, charms MovieLine with boner metaphors.
- Nathaniel over at Film Experience feared he was underperforming, but he actually did some great live-blogging of last week's Emmy Awards, including these lines about why none of us give a crap about the Emmy Awards: “Lead actor... And the winner is Bryan Cranston for the third time. Poor everyone else. This is actually why I've never been into the Emmys. It's like making your bed in the morning. There's always deja vu.”
- Do we regard the terrorist as a symbol (of his race/religion) or as an individual? Stanley Fish on the opportunistic language of the right. Money graf:
The formula is simple and foolproof (although those who deploy it so facilely seem to think we are all fools): If the bad act is committed by a member of a group you wish to demonize, attribute it to a community or a religion and not to the individual. But if the bad act is committed by someone whose profile, interests and agendas are uncomfortably close to your own, detach the malefactor from everything that is going on or is in the air (he came from nowhere) and characterize him as a one-off, non-generalizable, sui generis phenomenon.
- Neil Genzlinger's interesting look at TCM's interesting look at “The March of Time” docs of the 1930s and '40s. Includes a great opening paragraph.
- Christopher Hitchens on the Tea Baggers, in a Slate piece entitled “Glenn Beck's rally was large, vague, moist and undirected—the Waterworld of white self-pity.” Money quote:
In a rather curious and confused way, some white people are starting almost to think like a minority, even like a persecuted one. What does it take to believe that Christianity is an endangered religion in America or that the name of Jesus is insufficiently spoken or appreciated? Who wakes up believing that there is no appreciation for our veterans and our armed forces and that without a noisy speech from Sarah Palin, their sacrifice would be scorned? It's not unfair to say that such grievances are purely and simply imaginary, which in turn leads one to ask what the real ones can be. The clue, surely, is furnished by the remainder of the speeches, which deny racial feeling so monotonously and vehemently as to draw attention.
- Finally, how bad are the Mariners, Seahawks, et al.? Bad enough that Forbes magazine has named Seattle “the most miserable sports city” in America for the second year in a row. Knute Berger writes about it. He doesn't get mad enough.
“No, Kenjiro. I refuse to go to Seattle until the Mariners get a decent no. 3 hitter.”