Updates first! Another solid day’s work, despite the colder weather keeping me from walking. Back in November I worried that I’d run out of story too early. I made my usual mistake: forgetting that even though sometimes you work through an entire paragraph of synopsis in one sitting, other times one line presents such a complicated moment that characters will take a few thousand words to carry it through, and more space to realize the implications of what they’ve done.
I had a hilarious idea for a Christmas story on a walk today. I hope I’ll have time to write it. Also, after that Buddha – Fantasy book a few days ago, I’m reading one of Not-Bob Thurman’s collections of Tibetan Buddhist texts. Fascinating, and a lot more mystical. I’d forgotten about Tibetan Buddhism’s wonderful opinion on gods, about which more later.
Something else happened today, says the internet: JJ Abrams and company released a trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness! Now, I’m a big Trekkie from way back. ‘Darmok’ was the episode that convinced my parents to allow television into the house for occasions other than the Olympics. I’ve seen giant chunks of every series up through Voyager, and all the movies—yes, all the movies.
I enjoyed the heck out of the Star Trek reboot! I loved the actors they used to present the key characters, I liked the new vision of the Star Trek universe, I liked seeing a rougher, tumblier Starfleet than the very polished version the post-TNG series presented. Harry S. Plinkett’s criticisms notwithstanding—and I think he is right that the Star Trek reboot movie was designed to be more accessible, flashy, and over-the-top than the television series—I saw the first Star Trek in cinemas three times (not all on my own dime, mind—there was / is a recession on).
And, also, I love me some Benedict Cumberbatch. Sherlock, yes. Also, if you have not seen Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy yet (with Gary Oldman as Smiley), my god, what are you waiting for?
So, in sum: excited for Star Trek Into Darkness (to be followed by Star Trek To The Future, Star Trek To Infinity And Beyond, Star Trek to the West, etc., no doubt), but watching the trailer, well… Here, let me show you.
Notice anything? The kinda articulate, vaguely threatening, bass-boosted intellectual serious actorvoice presenting a Threat to You Complacent Sheeple, maybe? Remind you of anyone?
Not now, Bane! I’m trying to make a point.
This is not me saying “zomg everyone point and laugh at Hollywood ripping Hollywood off.” For one thing I never say zomg. Okay, I rarely say zomg. For another, I mean, these movies were all in production at the same time, so maybe that’s what happened, but I don’t care. I’m much more interested in the fact that a bunch of different folks and their teams seem interested in correlating “people who critique a complacent society” with “people who blow your shit all to hell.”
Granted, the Batman trailers didn’t feature Bane talking much, but I think that was partly because they wanted to keep the voice special and a secret. Selena Kyle, though, is happy to offer Bane’s critique for him:
And she even does it honestly, unlike the guy in the mask, who’s just running a super convoluted shell game with idealistic pretensions. (Which guy in the mask, you ask? That’s a good question, I reply.) Anyway, it seems a little odd that this is our movie bad guy now. Alyssa Rosenberg has cool thoughts on the subject.