Friday, September 30, 2005

Badfic for the Internet-Unready

For twenty minutes, I want Ryan Murphy’s life; for five, even. I want critics to shower my overwrought, self-indulgent, derivative fiction with goggle-eyed praise about its daring artistry and fearlessness. (Apparently gormless looks a lot like fearless, if you're a television critic.) And the sacks of money would come in handy. I admit it, I was curious about the season opener for Nip/Tuck. There is a certain morbid fascination in this show for me. I mean, this guy will write anything. I, on the other hand, apparently have limits as to what I will watch. (I know, who knew?)

Murphy knows how to get press, I guess; but for the entire show to be based on the premise that the characters will always and only do whatever can't be shown on network t.v. - well, it gets a little wearing after a while. The main plot of the season premiere went something like this:

Main Character gets his throat slashed by a razor-wielding maniac in a porcelain mask? Gross, but bearable. Said maniac proceeds to drug and rape main character? Really, really gross, but shown mercifully briefly. Main Character then interrogated by stone-cold police inspector, as if he were an inmate of Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane, and she Nurse Ratched's younger, butcher sister? Highly unlikely, but whatever. Inspector Stoneface then takes Main Character to the scene of the crime (his own bedroom) and proceeds to re-enact the crime? Uh, hello, wildly inappropriate and dizzyingly unprofessional! So glad you could make it in time for the Euuurgh.

Crime re-enactment leads to rough sex in the victim's bed, where Inspector Stoneface's "tough love" technique is supposed to lead to some sort of psychological breakthrough for Main Character? Uh, what the hell? This sort of thing only happens in the stickier examples of badfic. Not that I have anything against fan-fiction, if it's well made. (In fact, I find good fan-fiction really interesting as an idea and it can be cool in execution.) Iolokus was harrowing, but at least it hung its loopier excesses - and hoo boy, there were some - on a workhorse classical structure. Also, it had characters I could bring myself to care about, and who behaved like recognizable, if massively screwed up, human beings; none of this may be said of Murphy's snakepit of raving, erethetic narcissists.

Honestly, I could do better. Now if I could just get that cable-tv deal...

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Blogging For A Good Cause

I may be hip deep in pie much of the time, but some folks are going to be up to their waists or higher in floodwaters for a while. Just when I was beginning to despair of anything useful being done, I noticed that bloggers in various places are getting the message out in very constructive ways. For anyone who hasn't seen this yet, the wonderful Fug Girls have an updated and comprehensive list of ways to make donations to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Here in Canada, the Red Cross has set up a fund for donations in aid of those displaced or injured by Hurricane Katrina. Link to the Red Cross for more information. The activity of the government of Canada is set out here: (check under the drop-down list of questions).

Even the good people at Television Without Pity are doing their bit; creatively using their combined powers of snark to achieve some pretty impressive results (twenty grand and counting). And finally, there's this. About which, I can only say

Dear Bar:



The World