Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Eliza Dushku

First Day of School Links!

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* Some late but very nice press for my Octavia Butler book: I was on an episode of the nationally syndicated radio show Viewpoints Radio this week, and the book had a lovely review in LARB!

CFP: Artificial Life: Debating Medical Modernity (April 19-21, UC Riverside).

* $75 million dollars to philosophy at Johns Hopkins.

* And on the pedestal these words appear.

12 People Face Misdemeanor Charges for Giving Food to The Homeless in El Cajon.

A girl-power moment for Medieval Times, where a woman has the lead for the first time. I have wanted to take my kids to Medieval Times ever since listening to the Doughboys episode about it a few months ago.

* Like the story about the sexual assaults of the US gymnastics team, there is something about Eliza Dushku’s story of being abused as a child by adults who were trusted with her care that is just so heartbreaking.

* Meanwhile, McKayla Maroney is facing a $100,000 for violating her NDA with USA Gymnastics.

A list of the teen-sex movies that I grew up on in the late 1970s/ 1980s. Keep in mind: Every one of these was considered a *comedy.*

‘Every day I am crushed’: the stateless man held without trial by Australia for eight years.

* ICE Keeps Raiding Hospitals and Mistreating Disabled Children. Feds planning massive Northern California immigration sweep to strike against sanctuary laws. DHS and DOJ Want to Arrest Mayors of Sanctuary Cities.

How one employee ‘pushed the wrong button’ and caused a wave of panic. America’s emergency notification systems were first built for war, and then rebuilt for peace. A false alarm in Hawaii shows that they didn’t anticipate how media works in the smartphone era. These are fascinating but I still have every confidence that the explanation we have been given for this event is bullshit and that the truth will come out in a decade or so. Pandemonium and Rage in Hawaii.

* “Wisconsin school apologizes for slavery homework assignment.”

* Foxconn boondoggle nearing $4.5 billion.

* “Almost 35 years ago, she let a stranger hold her newborn. It has haunted her ever since.”

Activists charged with Confederate statue toppling no longer face felonies.

Chelsea Manning files to run for U.S. Senate in Maryland.

The True History of Luke Skywalker’s Monastic Retreat.

Tea if by sea, cha if by land: Why the world only has two words for tea.

How the Female Stars of The Breakfast ClubFought to Remove a Sexist Scene, and Won.

* Tired of winning. So tired.

* And of course you had me at “Gorgeous Images of the Planet Jupiter.”

J-Day Miscellany

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* Big happy birthday to two of history’s greatest heroes: my wife and Stan Lee.

* I think I want to take back all the nasty things I’ve ever said about Eliza Dushku’s acting. She’s doing a really good thing here.

* Larry Niven and the Green Lantern Bible.

Drugs in Portugal are still illegal. But here’s what Portugal did: It changed the law so that users are sent to counseling and sometimes treatment instead of criminal courts and prison. The switch from drugs as a criminal issue to a public health one was aimed at preventing users from going underground.

* A particular type of ancient rock art in Western Australia maintains its vivid colours because it is alive, researchers have found.

* MetaFilter on how to live forever.

* Also: a megapost on science fiction sensation Ted Chiang. Move over, Philip K. Dick: twelve stories in twenty years is a pace I think I can match.

* And Daily Kos has up-to-the-minute details on the dumbest shit yet.

Still OoT But With Unexpected Hotel Wifi Links

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* Ripped from the pages of Infinite Jest, a playable version of Eschaton. (via)

* Via Pete Lit, federal government to use its immense buying power to benefit society.

By altering how it awards $500 billion in contracts each year, the government would disqualify more companies with labor, environmental or other violations and give an edge to companies that offer better levels of pay, health coverage, pensions and other benefits, the officials said.

This looks to me like perhaps a first case of the end-runs Obama will have to make around our broken legislative institutions if he hopes to avoid a failed presidency. Another good sign: the final embrace of sidecar reconciliation to finish the job on health care.

* Of course, that headline in the New York Times gets it wrong, as Steve Benen has been desperately trying to explain to anyone who will listen: Democrats don’t need to pass health care via reconciliation because health care already passed through the regular order. Regardless, the Republicans are promising a full-on freakout if reconciliation is used; what might they do?

* “Pentagon fesses up to 800 pages’ worth of potentially illegal spying, including peace groups and Planned Parenthood.” Hey, thanks for admitting it! Of course we won’t prosecute you; you were just protecting the homeland!

* Eliza Dushku to ruin another Joss Whedon production.

* The pornography of infinity: China Miéville on J.G. Ballard.

* J.D. Salinger v. Raiders of the Lost Ark.

* Wikipedia’s list of landings on other planets. Did the Soviets think there was life on Venus? They certainly seem to have thought there was something there. Via Boing Boing.

* Secret origins of the cellar door line from Donnie Darko.

* FantasySCOTUS.

* Really good reading of the U.K. version of The Office that focuses on Gervais’s critique of celebrity culture to explain, among other things, how David Brent could possibly have won a promotion on a 5-2 vote of the company board or been hired by a consulting firm—as well as why the U.S. version, in dropping this thematic angle, will always be intrinsically inferior.

* If I were a Brigham Young student, here’s the process I would have to undertake to grow my beloved beard.

* Students at the University of Mississippi want Admiral Akbar as their new mascot. I wholeheartedly endorse this effort.

* Also Via MeFi: Personal pop-culture rules. “No Robin Williams” and “anything involving dinosaurs” are two I think I follow.

* And Matt Yglesias selfishly takes a stand against one of our most-beloved cultural institutions. No special rights for late-in-the-alphabet people!

Thoughts on the ‘Dollhouse’ DVD

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The DVD has only been out a week, so no real spoilers, but I have a few thoughts about the two unaired episodes of Dollhouse.

* “Epitaph One” is as ambitious and as amazing as promised—definitely my favorite episode of Dollhouse and one of the top Whedonverse episodes of all time. It is, in every sense, just great, laying out a blueprint for the future of the series that is so compelling I’m not sure we need to actually see any of intervening episodes. (As far as I’m concerned they’d just be killing time before we get to “Epitaph Two,” which is what I really want to see.) Joss and his co-writers have been pretty open with the fact that the episode came out of the assumption that there wouldn’t be any more; people reference “Objects in Space,” but the comparison to the season one finale of Sledge Hammer! seems much more apt. Have they written themselves into a corner? It’ll be interesting to see if Joss & Co. can make the second season work when the real story now seems to be happening in 2019. Will people really sit still for john-of-the-week episodes with the stakes raised so much higher? Or will season two be more like Lost seasons four and five, with flashbacks and flashforwards that meet somewhere in the middle? Honestly I think I’d be most happy if they stuck with the “Epitaph” frame for good and did 2009-2018 just in flashback. It’s not like we’re getting a third season; don’t leave anything on the road.

* Speaking of 2019: Was that a Dark Angel shout-out? The episode definitely had a post-Pulse vibe, and Joss and Dark Angel have something of a checkered past: widely understood as a Buffy rip-off, Dark Angel was unceremoniously canceled in favor of Firefly, which was later (you may have heard) unceremoniously canceled…

* The unaired pilot is, I think, probably a little worse as a pilot than the actually aired pilot—a rare case of network interference not being all bad—but it’s pretty clear that Joss bitterly prefers it. (I haven’t listened to the commentary yet, but apparently he has a lot of thoughts along these lines there as well.) Not only did he make oblique references to the original pilot throughout the season and in Epitaph One *and* bring back the astoundingly unimpressive Chrissy Seaver for “Omega,” but he ended the (aired) season on the same audiovisual image—a whispered “Caroline”—that the original pilot ended on. The implication seems to be that the whole of the first season gets us to the same place the pilot did in just one hour.

* The most interesting thing about the unaired pilot, I think, is the discovery that Eliza Dushku is actually pretty good at doing a series of drastically different characters when it happens in rapid-fire, three-minute bursts. It’s only over the course of a full episode that she really struggles as an actress. The hints toward Future Caroline in “Epitaph One” look like the latest attempt to explain away the one-note-acting; we’ll see how this plays out.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 1, 2009 at 4:10 pm

Sunday Misc.

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Sunday misc.

* Calling bullshit on the feel-good story of the week, Britain’s Susan Boyle.

* Why can’t clowns and cops learn to get along?

* The Sunday Herald has your brief history of manga.

* Joss Whedon on the future of Dollhouse.

So how far of an arc have you planned for the series already?

When I pitched it, I gave them a six-year plan with a lot of leeway for change. But what I really mapped out was the first 13, and even though we start in a different place than I had originally intended, we end up exactly where I’d intended in the 12th episode. Then, in the 13th episode, things just get stranger. There’s some twisted sh– coming.

Can you give us an idea of what to expect from the second half of the season?

The second half of the season, especially starting with episode six, “Man on the Street,” just kicks the entire franchise up a huge notch. It’s where we start to pay off on everything we’ve been setting up for five episodes in terms of the relationships and the progression that Echo’s going through. And then I just start twisting the knife and I don’t stop. Hopefully it’s still accessible to people; we’re still doing standalones and every episode has its own resolution, so it’s not just a rabbit’s hole. The first half was definitely, “This is the world and here’s how it works.” And then the second half just takes that up to an intense level and then we really start to mess with the audience.

Stick around for some creepy and unprofessional comments about his coworker Eliza Dushku.

Written by gerrycanavan

April 19, 2009 at 4:27 pm

Attention Whedonites

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Attention Whedonites: the new spin on Dollhouse is that it starts getting good with episode six.

AVC: It isn’t like Joss is some new kid on the block, though. He has a lot of shows under his belt, and he’s got this large cult following. Is it frustrating when you get that kind of feedback?

ED: Honestly, yes. I understand it from a business perspective, and from Fox’s view, but at the same time, we’ve now done 13 episodes, and people have said that the show took off once they finally realized that Joss is best off left alone to do his thing. That happens around episode six—six through 13 are just extraordinary. I love one, two, three, four, and five, but Joss’ first script that he did after the pilot is number six, which is called “Man On The Street,” and it is just unbelievable. From that point on, the world unfolds in Joss’ way, with Joss’ speed, and it’s really remarkable.

Written by gerrycanavan

February 28, 2009 at 2:41 am


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Sorry, but Twitter doesn’t lie: Eliza Dushku just can’t act and it drags Dollhouse down every minute she’s on screen. As I said somewhere in the Tweetspace, if this were The Helo Show with Amy Acker it’d probably be the best Joss show ever.

Keep hope alive for next week, Joss’s choice for the premiere and an episode Fox allegedly effed with less.

Written by gerrycanavan

February 14, 2009 at 2:51 am

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