5 Things I Learned From Clarion West

Clarion West co-administrator Leslie Howle challenged Clarion and Clarion West alums to share 5 things they learned from their time at the Clarion workshop. As part of my efforts to transition this blog into a more general “Mike talks about stuff” blog, I’m putting my entry here. Clarion and Clarion West are intensive writing workshops…

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Fall 2010 New Show Roundup

Having watched a number of the new shows that debut this fall, here are some thoughts: My Generation: I was interested in this show in no small part due to the fact that the main characters, nine students from the class of 2000 at an Austin high school, are nearly my age-peers.  I graduated in…

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Pilot: The Event

Behold, NBC’s intended successor to LOST.  It’s tightly-paced, unfolds in a mosaic narrative style, with interlocking character arcs, mysteries abounding, and a plane. The plane is important.  It increases the LOST resonance, and is important in the plot. Only one episode has premiered, but sofar, I’m intrigued.  Go below for Spoiler-ed discussion…

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Inception

This post will be in two parts — the first part will be a spoiler-free review, the second an essay of in-depth thoughts and reactions based on a complete, spoiler-laden perspective on the film.  Be warned. Previews and trailers for Christopher Nolan’s Inception have been atmospheric, vague, and beautiful.  Marketing copy and later trailers give…

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The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers

The Uprising has begun. After a year of build-up and promotion, the LXD webseries has debuted (on Hulu.com and on the LXD website). LXD first caught my attention with the pair of trailers that have been available for quite some time, displaying clips of incredible feats of athleticism through dance and promising a superhero-style story…

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Glee as Fantasy

I posit that Glee is a fantasy television series, in that it can be fruitfully evaluated using a focus on its non-mimetic narrative style to both comment on the traditions of the musical genre (especially the Hollywood Musical) but also in discussing “Music as Magic” and the way that said magic can be transformative, liberating,…

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Review: Kick-Ass

This review is about the film, rather than the Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. comic. Directed by Matthew “Layer Cake” Vaughn and co-written with Jane Goldman, this film elevates hyper-violence to the category of camp, in company with such films as Wanted and Shoot ‘Em Up. Roger Ebert called the film “morally reprehensible.” Well,…

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Review: Doctor Who “The Eleventh Hour”

New Doctor, new Companion, new look. In “The Eleventh Hour” Matt Smith steps into the role of The Doctor, one of the most recognizable and longest-running figures in science fiction television. I’m not much of a Whovian. I’ve watched occasional old episodes and chunks of episodes, the whole Eccleston series, chunks of Tennant’s run, and…

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