The year is over, Smugglivus is upon us, and we must also undergo another very important ritual…
The Airing of Grievances
(in which we air out any dirty laundry from 2008)
In ascending order, these are the things that really pissed us off this year.
3. Bad TV Shows and Crappy Adaptations of Books
We’re looking at YOU True Blood. We’re looking at you too, Fringe. Now we know lots of folks love True Blood, and are perfectly happy with the adaptation–heck, a second season has already been greenlit, and Anna Paquin has somehow landed a Best Actress Golden Globe nod for her take on Sookie. BUT…we are not happy campers. The show is cheesy, the writing pretty weak, the acting and directing is hokey, spotty at best. It’s surprising, especially coming from Allan Ball, whose previous series Six Feet Under was pretty damn well done.
Worst of all, Anna Paquin is NOT our dear Sookie Stackhouse. Not cool.
Then there’s the hybrid of every JJ Abrams show/movie ever made–Fringe. A bit of LOST in the music and conspiracy, a bit of Alias in the whole government agency/conspiracy storyline…oh right, and a total knockoff of The X-Files. Except Fringe isn’t nearly as cool as ANY of these shows. No thank you.
Speaking of shitty TV, how about that ridiculously contrived ship: JATE???? (For those not into LOST, this is the ship name for fans of Jack and Kate).
First off, Jaters are batshit insane (really. They have a “Jible” they want Jack and Kate to have “Jabies” they speak in “Jabble”–i.e. they put a “J” before every word in honor of their ship. The extent of their delusion is truly the stuff of nightmares). Secondly, the relationship is idiotic to begin with, and the level of fan-pandering this year to squeeeing Jater fangirls was disgusting. After having Kate choose Sawyer in season 3, the ensuing Jater shitstorm (in which they undertook a massive campaign sending scary photoshopped images of Jack and Kate, sewing kits, and guava seeds–really, don’t ask–to the powers that be at ABC) resulted in a Jack and Kate engagement and baby storyline in season 4. *vomits*
Don’t even get us started on the debacle that was 4×04 Eggtown (“DO YOU LOVE THE DEFENDANT?!” Worst. Writing. Ever.)
And really, what woman on the planet wouldn’t want this:
1. Books That Do Not Live Up To The Hype
The most egregious offense this year?
Books that are so pushed and hyped, and unfortunately just cannot deliver. Sorry Ms. Meyer (actually, we take that back–Stephenie Meyer certainly doesn’t need any of our sympathy considering the millions and millions of dollars she made this year), but Breaking Dawn sucked huge donkey balls. Not only was the message to young teenage girl readers atrocious and irresponsible, but the story was so incredibly idiotic that we are all now stupider for having read it. Of course, it isn’t Ms. Meyer’s fault that there was so much hype around her final novel in the Twilight Saga…but that does not excuse the flaming idiocy of Breaking Dawn.
Other Notable Grievances:
Handheld Camera Techniques in Big Budget Films/Horror Movies That Suck – First there was the overhyped and nausea inducing Cloverfield (which wasn’t a bad movie, and in all honesty would have been a million times better had it been filmed conventionally!). Then there was George Romero’s depressingly terrible Diary of the Dead. Then there was Quarantine. I saw all three of these films in the theater–because I love horror movies and will give all of them a try, no matter how skeptical the previews might leave me–and each film blew chunks. Literally. The handheld camera technique was cool and novel and WORKED in The Blair Witch Project–but it only worked because it was marketed perfectly, and the whole handheld filming scenario made sense. These were supposedly film students, making a movie, and the continued use of the camera after the shit goes down is written beautifully into the crumbling psyche of the main character.
Now, in Cloverfield, Diary, and Quarantine, the excuse for the vomit-inducing camera is “Someone needs to know the truth!!!!”. If we weren’t already nauseated from the intentionally shitty camera techniques, we certainly are once we hear imbeciles onscreen spewing forth this idiotic reasoning.
There is nothing wrong with regular, stable camera. So please get over this asinine trend. NOW.
Disinterested Losers That Happen to be Secret Geniuses – Most recently seen in Eagle Eye and the television show Fringe. Both have hero protagonists that on the surface seem to be wisecracking losers. But oh ho! Of course they are only losers by choice–in fact they have IQs of 185, scored perfectly on every standardized test, and have dropped out of Ivy League level schools.
Why can’t the reluctant hero character, if he is a shlumpy kind of dude, just be a shlumpy dude? Why must everyone be a secret genius who has spurned MIT or Stanford?
Heroes – Ana will tell you all about it…
And that’s it! Our 2008 grievances are aired, and our 2009 slates are clean. Are there any gripes y’all have had for the past year that you want to get off your chest?