Much of which has been levelled at the PRB but I don't care because I still love their stuff. I had a book of fairy stories as a small child and it was full of pre-raph-esque illustrations and I loved it to bits and thus they will always have a place in my heart (much like the children's pictorial encyclopaedia which I also treasured and I still get a particular thrill everytime I see something I remember from it, like the dead dog from Pompeii or Michelangelo's Piety).
Oh, I know how we got onto the PRB, the Antiques Roadshow was on when I walked through the door and there was a painting with Chinese lanterns in it and I love an impressionist painting with lanterns, like that Degas one and the Peanut Gallery was talking about Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose (aka darnation, silly, silly pose on account of it being a bitch to paint) which he'd seen at that exhibition in Brisbane I'd missed (sulk sulk grizzle grizzle) and then onto the PRB and then onto Aidan Turner and Rafe Spall dropping trou. So easy, when you think about it.
Anyway, vastly enjoyed Desperate Romantics (what I saw of it, was ironing/making tea at the time) and I was tickled further that I'd actually seen several of the works featured in the first episode, was bemused at the Academy frumps and Dickens being cast as moustache twirling villains who just don't get it (PG explains that it was all about gritty Ken Loach realism at the time and the PRB cut through like a trippy Tim Burton film, hence the going against the grain). But never mind that, it's a very silly romp and art is only incidental to the piece. I was bemused that everyone was speaking in soundbytes, but the PG again reminded me that Wilde et al were no better.
Speaking of Wilde, by coincidence I've finished Greenmantle (which totally should be a film, being a timely piece of de ja news of middle eastern strife and jihads, femme fatales, nasty Germans and heroic British officers, what's not to love?) and started on Dorian Gray, or rather the essay in the front which has latched onto the dualism of Victorian society as well secret sub-societies and cliques etc as they bang on about Oscar's double life, referencing Stevenson quite a bit. There was an interesting bit about encoded behaviour like wearing carnations and while I might have missed it all in the rather clumsy Murdoch Mysteries episode I was thinking oh, like on Maverick. Maverick, which also adapts a lot of Stevenson. Maverick, which really makes me wonder at times whether I'm watching it wrong, or watching it right (and am I reading the encoded behaviours right or just mixing signals with my 21stC eyes?). Or is Maverick, both of them, but Bart in particular since Garner took first pick of the showgirl episodes, but showgirls aside, who are always flirted with but nothing more (50s tv morals look quaint and gay by modern standards), is Maverick more of an outsider than mere grifting would suggest? Certainly there's a lot of stuff in Maverick that causes one to raise an eyebrow (both, even, at times), but is the show meant to be about men who live as outsiders from mainstream society or am I just picking up on jokes inserted by bored writers as a nod and a wink to knowing metrpolitan tv audiences?
Mind you, much the same can be said of most 50s/60s tv, because, honestly, the so-called gay agenda on Dr Who is nothing compared to those early shows and it was only in the late 60s when things started to get seriously homophobic - up until then, at least on Fox Classics, it seems to be endless hours of tie me up in my underwear good clean fun.
One could think that until the late 60s, the mass audience, much like Queen Victoria, refused to believe such things existed, but suddenly, much like Wilde's work after his arrest, television was seen with new eyes and there was no more spanking or semi-naked wrestling to be hand on mainstream American television (until they invented cable, at least). I also vaguely remember reading an article (in xeroxed form, when dinosaur walked the earth) where Wild Wild West's (a king in the arts of transgressive television) demise was described as being the result of new ratings systems and the roll out of televsion from the coasts to the, well, more conservative areas. Those hillbillies just ought to stay away from the devil's box and leave all the fun to us, is what I'm thinking. Certainly the smart, sassy sexy shows (which complex and strong female characters, no less) all vanished from the screens just when I needed them most as I started to grow up and engage with TV on new levels (levels which no longer existed, thank you, lowest common denominator). But maybe I'm still just watching it wrong.
And yet, on Maverick, all that being run out of town and close association with other dandified gents...it makes a gal wonder. Yet another study on those not fully integrated to mainstream society? From Dorian Gray to True Blood, in one easy step.
Anyhoo, what I was really going to write about was what they described on Coupling as unflushables, particularly fandom unflushables. Not the fans, per se, though there have been a few of those, but I was thinking more of fandoms that just won't leave you alone. You know, you want some apart time from the show/fandom that was once your greatest love, but things have changed, you've grown apart, you've moved on. But the show, it won't let you. Maybe, while other good shows die young, this show plods on like a zombie, more lives than a cat, not even cutting off its head and burying it at a crossroads will stop it. Or actors/writers you really love and follow will suddenly, inexplicably, turn up on it, forcing a return to the fold. Or actors/writers from the show will turn up on other shows you like, like some viral infection. And at this point you're thinking I either give up and submit or take out the telly.
Or is it just me? I am seriously being stalked by some ex-shows at the moment, damn their eyes.
Meanwhile, my fave hardware shop is closing. You know, the one I've been raving about as the prince of hardware stores. This is a cruel blow as I can't get to those strip mall ones so I'm effectively stuffed, and they were so good with the exactly right advice and they had precision German engineered tools (I just can't be doing with cheap Chinese made crap that falls apart after five minutes when I've got a lot of work to do and only one day to do it). So I've been going past every day of their closing down sale (weep! - they've been there for like a hundred years, for serious) and walking out with all I could carry. I must look like I'm up to something entirely nefarious and Burn Noticey, but like I said, the house is falling down around my ears and it was hard going to guess what I'll need to patch up next month and the month after that. (Why is the house like this? Because I was advised when I had a very heavy 16 hr workload to leave others to chip in or fester in refuse and unfortunately the tipping point came far, far too late. I need help, and there is none).
Oh, I also went black and brown today. I'm sure I still look like a demented bag lady (especially with my bag o'hardware), but at least I feel less like a demented bag lady, and that's the main thing. Yesterday I was one battered flowery hat away from a lunatic that used to pester a former place of employ, and that was just too close for comfort.
The boys are back in town (Boondock Saints)
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