Showing posts from April, 2011

A Right Royal Fuss

It's impossible to ignore. Flags are appearing hither and thither, wedding themed displays are going up in shops and the media is bracing itself for the oncoming publicity frenzy. The most talked about thing in the country at the moment is easily the royal wedding, especially today on the eve of the event.

The royal wedding either enthralls you with its chest thumping patriotic glee/ romantic fairytale connotations, or gives you that sinking feeling of being an outsider who doesn’t really get what’s going on. After all when you look at the wedding in the cold light of day it really is just about two aristocrats being wed to each other. Do you pay this much attention to the wedding of someone you don’t know (celebrities aside)?

In the scheme of things the hoopla and analysis that has gone into this wedding – including fun little side-quests like betting on what colour hat the Queen will be wearing on Friday – is a little bit weird when you really think about it. If anyone spent …

Advertise this!

Today – for the millionth and first time - I’m going to have a little muse on adverts. Now adverts are interesting things. In short, they are attention bandits looking to distract you towards the wild and crazy things or messages they are trying to sell. You find them everywhere, as they increasingly invade your consciousness like an annoying child trying to sing an annoying song they’ve learned from the TV.

Here follows a collection of the different types of advert you may have seen around the world and what they are secretly saying to you. Most of these are quite obvious, although some carry more subtle messages.

Web banners (especially any that incorporate pop-up sound and video)

What they are: These have grown up with the internet. True, not many of them are as annoying as they could be. Although I’ve noticed that recently advertisers are starting use video ads that have an irritating habit of suddenly taking up most of the screen. As for what they subtly say….. Actually there…

Hacked off

A very interesting piece of journalism was produced by the New Statesman yesterday, giving a worrying insight into the mind of the tabloid journalist and also hinting that several acts of perjury have been committed in the ongoing News of The World phone tapping case. Oddly on this occasion, this was not the work of a trained undercover journalist but was the result of a disgruntled Hugh Grant deciding to record a conversation with a hack called Paul McMullen, who had recently run a story on the celebrity.

Despite not receiving much in the way of mainstream coverage, it was nice to see someone turn the tables on a so-called journalist, who seemed to think he had a god given right to spy on people for profit and then claw the moral high ground by shoving public interest into the debate.

What was worrying however was Grant’s claim that McMullen had said: “phone-hacking was a price you had to pay for living in a free society”, belying the self important, hypocritical idiocy that tabloi…

It just made suckers of the audience

Over the weekend I visited the London Imax to see the latest Zack Snyder film Sucker Punch. I have enjoyed his earlier films, such as 300 and Watchmen, which were wonderful realizations of famous comic books. Sucker Punch however was based on Snyder’s own story and even before I had taken my seat in the cinema I knew the reviews hadn’t been good. Many had attacked the film for its ludicrous plot and lack of characterization. I had taken this with a pinch of salt as the film looked as if it would be an action spectacular which would sell itself on its spectacle whilst making no apologies for its lack of good storytelling. Ultimately I was right, but I wasn’t satisfied.

There are many problems with Sucker Punch. Firstly there is the issue of gender politics. The girls that make up the main characters are vulnerable (and questionably insane but that link is never proven or disproven, aside from the fact they have been placed in a mental institution) and yet are dressed up in outrageous…