Friday, January 30, 2009

Baltimore Examiner, we hardly knew ye!

I HATE bad news about the newspaper industry, and this is just awful: The Baltimore Examiner is closing after its February 15th issue.

This does not bode well for B-more. Recently, the Tribune declared bankruptcy, and the Baltimore Sun, b and The Aegis are Tribune companies. I still don't know how that's going to work in the long run.

Is this really the death of print journalism? I don't think so. What are people gonna read when they gotta' poop?

But seriously, I think the industry is changing, not dying. I think we're going to start seeing more papers following the alt-weekly model. The biggest problem is that people don't want to pay for their news when they can get it for free on the internet. This is going to mean more ads. It might mean less dailies and more weekly or monthly publications. I think we'll see papers focusing on local issues and leaving the national stuff for the internet and television.

I enjoy getting the paper delivered. On the other hand, I get it delivered for free because I work for the paper. Would I pay for that content? I don't know. I'd like to say I would, because my paper only covers local issues, and there's really no other way to get that news (yes, there are local blogs, but they steal their content from The Aegis.)

Anyway, I'm sorry to see The Examiner go. It was nice to have more than one option for news in this town.

Who watches the Watchmen?

I try not to get excited at the faintest glimmer of promise, but I'm a little slow, and so the cycle continues.

Case in point: The Watchmen movie trailer.

Holy shit that looks awesome. Seriously, if you haven't read The Watchmen, you need to stop reading this blog immediately and go pick up a copy. The trailer is not shitting you when it says "The Watchmen" is the most acclaimed graphic novel ever. I could go on about how it's Alan Moore at his best, about how it reinvented the genre, about how freaking cool the Owlship looks...but I won't.

Instead, I'll resort to my favorite pastime. Worrying about shit.

The Watchmen? A movie? That's gonna be a hard one to pull off. One of the best things about The Watchmen is that it WORKED as a graphic novel. The story belongs in the comic book realm and I feel like if it were brought to the big screen it would be, well, pretty damn cheesy.

I mean, there's SO much goofy shit in there. But when you're reading a comic book, I think there's something in the back of your mind that's telling you "this is a comic book. Yes, the part where Dr. Manhattan transports himself to Mars* is silly, but it's a comic book so I can forgive that."

But people hold movies to a different standard. People watch movies all the time and say "That could never happen. " I don't know if it was always that way or that sort of thinking came about as special effects became more convincing. It's like you can see a painting and accept it for what it is because it's a painting, but film is always held to this "it's gotta be like real life" standard. I don't get it. And that's why I'm scared for The Watchmen movie.

I can look at every single scene in that trailer and tell you who the character is and what's going on plot wise. It looks so close to the book it's scary. Normally I dislike it when a movie strays too much from its original source, but in this case, I can make an exception. If details need to be changed to make it work as a movie, then I'm alright with that. The trailer looks awesome, but I have a terrible feeling that I'm going to be disappointed.

I guess we'll find out in March, eh?

*Sometimes I wanna be exiled to Mars like Dr. Manhattan. Just sayin'. I also want a martian castle.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Marriage of Art, Science & Philosophy

Have you seen the latest show at the American Visionary Arts Museum?

First of all, if you're in the Baltimore area and you've never been to the AVAM, you're missing out. Seriously, that place rocks.

Anywho, the exhibition's called The Marriage of Art, Science & Philosophy, and I gotta say, it looks pretty sweet. I'm hoping to check out the show pretty soon. I haven't been to an AVAM show in awhile, but the "art and science" theme has been popping up a lot for me, so I'm intrigued.

Anyone wanna go with me? I have to warn you, it takes me hours to get through a museum. No takers? Ok, I'll make sure to review the show after I see it.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Look! On the right!

I started a list of other blogs you might enjoy. Not that you don't love this one, of course.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Never make assumptions...

"The dog who is so angry he cannot move. He cannot eat. He cannot sleep. He can just barely growl. Bound so tightly with tension and anger, he approaches the state of rigor mortis."

-The Angriest Dog in the World

So a few months ago I was talking to one of my fellow Spanish classmates. She's an older woman, probably about my dad's age, early 50's. Nothing particularly interesting about her right off the bat. I mean...she seemed so...normal. I just kind of assumed she was some boring lady who's taking a second language because she had nothing better to do, right?

So anyway, somehow we got on the subject of comics. And she mentioned that City Paper (Baltimore's alt-weekly) used to run her favorite comic ever, but then they dropped it in the early 90s. So I asked her what it was, and she says "The Angriest Dog in the World."

The Angriest Dog in the World. Probably one of the strangest comics strips I've ever seen in my life. That's not surprising since it was created by David Lynch, who happens to direct some of the strangest movies I've ever seen in my life. Here are a few samples of the strip:

You can check out more examples here.

Anyway, the fact that this lady dug this strip totally changed how I viewed her. I mean, I try not to judgemental of people, I don't want to make assumptions, but sometimes it happens, and that's why I love stuff like this.

I love it when you get a pleasant surprise about someone that makes you totally rethink what you had initially thought. I love finding out what makes someone different or quirky or interesting. Everyone has something, and I think the less obvious it is, the more interesting it is. The fact that this weird little strip makes that woman smile just makes me smile. I usually don't like it when I'm wrong, but it's little reality checks like this that make me appreciate the people I know, the people I'm getting to know and the people I don't know.

Seriously. The fact that this lady likes "The Angriest Dog in the World" makes me want to give the world a hug.

Ok, this is getting too sappy. I'm starting to sound like I'm off my meds. Peace!