That picture was posted on Mona’s Facebook Feed. It reminded me so much of Bebe when she was a baby.
Anyway, plenty of cartoons for you tonight, let’s start with some from Luckovich and Bagley.
This next one is my favorite…
I am so excited that I’ve found these embed things on facebook.
The rest of the cartoons are found on the AAEC or Truthdig websites.
This is an open thread….
Okay, this is Monday. I’m sure because I watched a really creepy new Game of Thrones last night after I got back from gigging. It’s funny how white walkers and their armies of the dead remind me of Republicans and their voters. So, here we go …
Did y’all see that little bit on Twitter over the weekend? It seems some one has forgotten to google his name recently. Given the historical proclivities of Republican politicians these days I would say that’s about right.
So with that, I give you the rundown of all the news we keeping hearing about the Republican Bottoms. Long may their fat little asses wave in the air with well deserved publicity.
Lady Lindsey–the Senate’s best unkept secret closet case–announced the official presidential campaign thingie today to not a lot of fan fare. As true with all campaigns, it starts with the candidate defining himself by his early life. Lindsey did not sing “This boy is a bottom” who votes against nearly everything that represents being authentically gay. The only thing authentic about Lady Lindsey is that he–along with co-conspirator John McCain—has never met a war he hasn’t want to send other people’s kids to fight. Keep clutching those pearls Senator Bottom!
But as he announced his presidential bid Monday here in the tiny town where he grew up, Lindsey Graham sought to knock down the idea that he’s a creature of Washington and instead told a personal story that’s largely been overlooked over the course of his two decades in the House and Senate.It’s the tale of a son of pool-hall owners, who grew up near-impoverished in the back room of his parents’ bar. As a college student, he raised, and eventually adopted, his little sister after their parents died, before going on to have a career as an Air Force lawyer and then rising to become South Carolina’s senior senator.
“Those of you who’ve known me a long time know I had some ups and downs as a young man,” he said. “I lost my parents, and had to struggle financially and emotionally … There are a lot of so-called ‘self-made’ people in this world. I’m not one of them. My family, friends, neighbors and my faith picked me up when I was down, believed in me when I had doubts. You made me the man I am today.”
Larry Flynt continues to offer $1 million dollars to anyone with a legitimate “I fucked this politician” story. I’m sure we’ll eventually find the men that made him the man Lady Lindsey is today. I say that all these damn fool Republican closet cases be outed and outed with a big ol’ vengeance. I’m tired of hearing them grab that evangelical carousel ring while fucking who they want to and the rest of us too.
The Supreme Court is releasing its decisions for the October 2014 year and started with one sure to make the thumpers few brain cells go thumpa thumpa thumpa. Yes, religion expressions other than the endless crass consumerism season we all endure each year are protected activities. So Long Dong Silver was the sole hold out on this one. Not a bottom but certainly some one who is no stranger to whatever goes on in the world of anything goes porn.
The Supreme Court ruled Monday for a Muslim woman who did not get hired after she showed up to a job interview with clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch wearing a black headscarf.
The justices said that employers generally have to accommodate job applicants and employees with religious needs if the employer at least has an idea that such accommodation is necessary.
Job applicant Samantha Elauf did not tell her interviewer she was Muslim. But Justice Antonin Scalia said for the court that Abercrombie “at least suspected” that Elauf wore a headscarf for religious reasons. “That is enough,” Scalia said in an opinion for seven justices.
The headscarf, or hijab, violated the company’s strict dress code for employees who work in its retail stores.
Elauf was 17 when she interviewed for a “model” position, as the company calls its sales staff, at an Abercrombie Kids store in a shopping mall in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 2008. She impressed the assistant store manager with whom she met. But her application faltered over her headscarf because it conflicted with the company’s Look Policy, a code derived from Abercrombie’s focus on what it calls East Coast collegiate or preppy style.
Abercrombie has since changed its policy on headscarves and has settled similar lawsuits elsewhere.
The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed suit on Elauf’s behalf, and a jury eventually awarded her $20,000.
But the federal appeals court in Denver threw out the award and concluded that Abercrombie & Fitch could not be held liable because Elauf never asked the company to relax its policy against headscarves.
Back to closet cases for a moment. So, I’m not not in to quoting the National Review but this is a good question: How Did Denny Hastert Get Rich Enough to Pay Millions to an Accuser?
By the sketchy standards of Illinois politics, that might well have been true. But his fall from grace should prompt other questions about how a former high-school teacher who held elective office from 1981 to 2007 could leave Congress with a fortune estimated at $4 million to $17 million. When he entered Congress in 1987, he was worth at most $275,000. Hastert was the beneficiary of very lucky land deals while in Congress; and since leaving office, he has earned more than $2 million a year as a lobbyist. That helps explain how he could agree to pay $3.5 million to a former student to cover up an ancient sex-abuse scandal.
You can go read the details at the link. The land deal is characterized as “honest graft”. Hmmmmmm ….
Among other bottom in the news is that Republicans are once again eating their own. (Again, with the Santorm reference for good measure!) Down with Tyranny writes that: Crooked Republican Closet Case Aaron Schock Draws a Primary Challenge. I think of him every time I hear some one call some one else a butt munch.
Maybe Aaron Schock’s congressional seat isn’t as safe as we’ve been saying it is. The seat was redrawn in 2010 by the Democratic Illinois legislature to concentrate Republicans in one district in order to make IL-13 and IL-17 safe for Democrats. The Democrats have still be unable to capture the 13th (Rodney Davis’ district) and the reactionary Blue Dog Democrat who won in the 17th, Cheri Bustos, wasn’t worth the effort.
Shock wound up with an R+11 district, won by McCain with 54% and by Romney with 61%– and won by Schock in 2012 with 74% and last November, despite mounting ethics charges, with 75%. Ostensibly, IL-18 loves Aaron Schock. He’s been very popular in the district where his excuses for being a dashing young bachelor– “I still just haven’t had time to find the right gal”– are accepted at face value. Inside the Beltway, everyone knows Aaron Schock is a gay party boy. In the suburbs around Springfield and Peoria and the farming villages that run east from Iowa Schock’s lifestyle doesn’t compute as “gay.” And nothing would get these people to vote for a Democrat anyway.
But this week it’s looking likely that they will have an opportunity to replace Schock with a more conservative Republican… if they want to. As the financial scandals pile up and get more and more press back home, Bloomington attorney Mark Zalcman has been putting together the beginning of a primary challenge against Schock. He declared his candidacy on Monday and said his platform will be centered on his Christian faith and values. His campaign slogan: “Because Washington needs the Gospel.” Presumably his allies will get more specific about Schock’s non-Gospel lifestyle as the campaign heats up.
I’m thinking that some of these folks outta spend some time around some good Buddhists and learn about Karma. Karma appears to be a top.
Here’s another one from North Dakota: “North Dakota Rep. with anti-gay voting record comes out of closet after lewd pictures on dating site Grindr surface.” You would think he could stop thinking with his little head long enough to not post to a Gay hook up site, wouldn’t ya?
A conservative North Dakota lawmaker has come out of the closet after lewd texts he sent on a gay dating site were made public this week.
The randy red-state Republican, Rep. Randy Boehning, was outed Monday, more than a month after the Roughrider State legislator sent an unsolicited picture of his penis and several other messages to 21-year-old Bismarck resident Dustin Smith back on March 12 on the gay dating site Grindr, according to multiple reports.
Boehning, a 12-year veteran of North Dakota’s state assembly who has routinely voted against gay rights legislation, charged that the leaked messages were sent to media outlets in retaliation for his vote against Senate Bill 2279, which would have added sexual orientation to the state’s anti-discrimination law. For the third time since 2009, the bill was voted down by conservative North Dakota lawmakers, including Boehning.
But Smith, who first leaked the Grindr messages to The Forum, claims he simply wanted to reveal Boehning’s hypocrisy.
“How can you discriminate against the person you’re trying to pick up?” Smith told the local Bismark-area newspaper on Monday.
Boehning, 52 and unmarried, has been an active member of the site and conducted his affairs under the profile name “Top Man!,” Smith said.
“Seems I haven’t found mister right yet, so need to keep looking for and having fun on the way! Hit me up boys,” Boehning’s Grindr bio reads.
Boehning, a staunch conservative, insistently refused to comment on the allegations for two weeks, but this week finally came forward to admit that he had been using the platform to chat with other men and that he was gay,according to The Forum.
Well, guess that dude was look for Mr. Good Bottom. Maybe Denny Hastert needs a new room mate. Oh, wait, he’s going to jail so he’ll have plenty of tops looking for him now!!!
Absolutely nothing drives me nuttier than a candy bar than the utter hypocrisy of these guys. Again, my biggest hope is that we have a rush on Larry Flint’s email and that each and every one of these hypocritical dudes gets outted in a spectacular way.
I not only want the closet cases outted. I want the serial adulterers with the smirkier holier than thou attitudes out in the open too. That would include all the hookers that did my Senator Vitter before he becomes my damned governor. Larry already netted Vitter but some how we still can’t get rid of him. There has to be a few more hookers in need of a million out there with some pictures. C’mon ladies!!!
I’ll get to race handicapping in a few paragraphs, but first let’s deal with the only thing most people know about David Vitter (who has not, by the way, distinguished himself in the Senate in any way). I’ve always wondered: How in the world did he survive that hooker business? Not only did he admit he was a client of Deborah Jeane Palfrey’s escort service. She then went and hanged herself. Not over him personally. Over the whole mess, and staring at serious jail time. But still. Extramarital relations are one thing, with a staffer or a woman of accomplishment; politicians almost always slog their way through that. But here we had the guy calling on hookers, and the dead body of the madam. And Vitter skated through it and sailed to reelection two years later. How?
“He hid for a year and a half,” says my operative. At first, when his name was revealed by Hustler in connection to the case, Vitter acknowledged it. He said he’d asked for and received his wife’s and (somewhat presumptuously) God’s forgiveness. After that he would say no more—“out of respect for my family.” Nice touch.
By the time 2010 came around, Palfrey was less important to the state’s voters than the fact that Charlie Melancon, the Democrat who challenged Vitter, had “voted with Barack Obama 98 percent of the time” in Congress. That’s all Vitter said. That, and the forgiveness thing, and the “fact” that illegal immigrations were cutting holes through chain-link fences and being welcomed by bleeding-heart Melanconistas with a brass band and a waiting limousine, as this really vile and racist TV ad of his had it. Vile and racist works down there, so what had seemed at first like a close-ish race became a 19-point whupping.
Ever since, Vitter has been fine, with his approval rating up in the high 50s. I guess all it takes to do that is to be right wing and anti-Obama. And so, he’s the favorite to be the state’s next governor.
Maybe the evangelicals were just happy that found a compound adulterer who wasn’t gay for a change. Who knows? All I know is that if I were any where near their clown car, I would be sure to wear a human size condom.
Take note reporters.
What’s on your reading and blogging list today?
For years there has been an inside joke in my house, my brother Denny has to watch two shows daily. Bonanza and Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. If there is any satellite issues and he can’t see these shows, which air on one of those Turner networks, he has a fit of Rainman proportions.
Now for the joke. I tease Denny about his favorite show Bonanza by calling out the name Cartwright, Cartwright…like the episode from Seinfeld, where the crew are waiting for a table in a Chinese Restaurant.
In the episode, George is waiting for a woman to call him at the Chinese restaurant. When she does call, the host calls out “Cartwright” instead of George’s name. It’s super hilarious and prompts this discussion between Jerry and George:
I’m Cartwright …
You’re not Cartwright.
[EXPLODING] Of course I’m not
Well, it turns out that my little joke with Denny is more on target than even I thought.
Secret gags in “Seinfeld” are real, and they’re spectacular.
There are Superman figures slyly appearing in episodes, writers dropping in the names of their friends and tons of hidden references the show creators even forgot were there. Well, now we know of at least one more.
When “The Chinese Restaurant” episode aired on May 23, 1991, NBC was not a fan. Larry David has said the network “hated” the episode and didn’t think waiting around to get a seat in a restaurant would work as a storyline. Now, it’s recognized as one of the most iconic episodes, and it turns out its most memorable joke has been an Easter egg this whole time, according to former “Seinfeld” writer Spike Feresten.
“Like Deep Throat … This goes all the way to the top,” said Feresten, who went on to reveal the famous line’s hidden meaning to The Huffington Post.
So what and how does “Cartwright” figure in this whole thing?
The Big Reveal: “Costanza (sounds like) ‘Bonanza’ = Cartwright”
Yep. This whole time Cartwright has been a reference to the classic Western show “Bonanza,” which followed the wild adventures of the Cartwright family.
Though the episode happened before he joined the show, Feresten says the info comes from “an unimpeachable source.” The writer was mum on if it was in fact one of the show creators — either David or Jerry Seinfeld — but, as we mentioned, did say it went “all the way to the top.”
So there you have it, kids. The mystery of why the host calls out “Cartwright” has finally been solved. Now if only Jerry could get a table …
It’s the little things that get us through the day sometimes. This little tidbit just made my day, which is good because aside from what has happened in Ireland…this has been a shitty week all around.
Irish people have woken up in a kinder, more accepting Ireland
Friday’s referendum changed more than the Irish Constitution, “it has reshaped forever the republic in which we live”, the Yes Equality Campaign has said.
Speaking at the organisation’s final press conference in Dublin on Sunday, organised to thank the Irish public for voting Yes, Brian Sheehan, co-director of the campaign, said people woke up on Sunday in a kinder, more gentle, more accepting Ireland.
He said Irish people have given a new sense of belonging to their lesbian and gay family members, friends and neighbours.
The campaign was set up by the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (Glen), the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) and Marriage Equality to canvas for a yes vote in last Friday’s referendum to allow same-sex marriage.
Some 62 per cent of voters accepted the constitutional amendment.
Gráinne Healy, co-director of the campaign, said a question was asked, that question was answered resoundingly, and all of us are the better for that.
If only we could say the same for all of us here in the US of A.
The family won the same-sex marriage referendum for gay people
Archbishop Diarmuid Martin is of course correct. The Catholic Church does indeed need a reality check in the wake of the same-sex marriage referendum.
As the unequivocal result of the referendum became clear he said: “I think really that the church needs to do a reality check, a reality check right across the board, to look at the things it’s doing well, to look at the areas where we really have to start and say, ‘Look, have we drifted away completely from young people’?”
It’s not just young people. The people who voted for this referendum included tens of thousands of practicing older Catholics in the cities, towns and countryside of Ireland. People who will continue to practice their faith but who no longer accept that their gay sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, grandchildren, even their gay parents, are “objectively disordered” with a tendency to evil, as their Church teaches.
Rather, by voting Yes last Friday, they embraced their gay minority and trumpeted to the world “you are my son, you are my daughter, you are my brother, you are my sister, you are my grandchild, you are my mother, you are my father, you are my equal inlaw whatever the church may teach.”
It is an irony that those who opposed the referendum out of concern for the family were defeated by the family. The difference being that the No family was a concept, whereas last Friday’s Yes families were flesh and blood, living, breathing, flawed, impossible, loving humanity.
Read the rest at the link.
More on this fabulous news from the Green Isle…
It’s been a year:Let’s Victim-Blame Women for Elliot Rodger’s Murders! | Feministe
On the issue of women: When the Rapist Doesn’t See It as Rape – NYTimes.com
The rest of the links in dump format.
This guy jumped up on the hood of the car and shot the unarmed drivers…to pieces.
Cannonfire-They are really going after Hillary, aren’t they?
This next link is connected with the shitstorm Dugger and Huckabee…can you guess?
You know that Huckabee had one of his appointed Judges make those Dugger kid molestation files disappear…anyway.
Yeah, distrust of government, nothing like it when you can’t trust your law enforcement, justice system and courts. ..when it comes to cover-ups and Jeezus.
Shit GOP idiots say:
Vampire Myth Likely Caused by Disease, Scientists Say – That article is something…be sure to read it.
“Mugwump is a derogatory word for somebody in charge who affects to be above petty squabbles and factions. So when your boss tries to make peace at the meeting table like an impartial angel, he is being a mugwump.”
“A rawgabbit, just in case you were wondering, is somebody who speaks in strictest confidence about a subject of which they know nothing. A rawgabbit is the person who pulls you aside and reveals in a careful whisper that the head of Compliance is having an affair with the new recruit in IT, which you know to be utterly untrue because the head of Compliance is having an affair with you, and the new recruit in IT hasn’t started yet.”
And this one too: The Book of Forgetting – Scientific American
This is an open thread.
Yeah it is hella late.
Good Late Night
Luckovich Sandwich tonight.
Just a few to post tonight, the rest are via Cagle so you will need to go and click on the links to view them directly.
This is an open thread.
I could not bear to write a post today. So just take this one for what it is, my overzealous attempt to find a few Medieval images for the thread that reminded me of the GOP idiots who are running or announcing that they are running for Prez…in 2016. I was looking and next thing I know it is four am…go figure.
So, I decided to post the illuminations, manuscripts, marginalia, bestiary, cheeky monkeys and the like with my own various commentary. Most of which will call back to the clowns that Boston Boomer and Dakinikat have been talking about lately. The images below are found here:
and here: Pinterest: Getting Medieval On Your Ass
So the captions within the slide show are just my observations. Click on the links above for the information on the links.
Just a few that are beyond the scope of the political references that are the theme of the post today.
This reminds me of the Seinfeld episode with the marbled rye…“Seinfeld” The Rye (TV Episode 1996) – IMDb it airs tomorrow by the way on TBS.
The next image is also from a Seinfeld episode.
Little Jerry was born to cock fight! “Seinfeld” The Little Jerry (TV Episode 1997) – IMDb
Okay, now for the slide show…click on the first picture below, it should open up to the larger gallery slide show….if you cannot read the full caption under the image, use the down arrow on your keyboard, it should work to move the text so you can read the entire entry.
This is an open thread.
Did anyone catch the film Tales of Hoffmann last night? It was on TCM, and unfortunately it is not scheduled for broadcast again anytime soon. I missed it. And that is such a disappointment.
More on this film at the end of the post. The images you see are from that opera/ballet put on film in 1951 and 4K digitally restored by Martin Scorsese in a 2015 release that is being screened in limited engagements worldwide. (A few being in Austin, Nashville, San Francisco, and a couple of more cities in the US, as I said more on this later…)
First, let’s get some newsy links out of the way:
The numbers out of Nepal are shocking:
The number of people killed in Nepal by two major earthquakes has surpassed 8,500, making the disaster the deadliest to hit the Himalayan country on record, as rescuers on Sunday searched for dozens of people still missing in remote villages.
A 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Nepal on April 25, killing thousands and demolishing more than half a million homes, most of them in rural areas cut off from emergency medical care.
A second major quake struck on Tuesday 76 kilometers (47 miles) east of the capital Kathmandu, just as Nepalis were beginning to recover from the previous earthquake.
The death toll from the two quakes now stands at 8,583, the home ministry said on Sunday.
The previous deadliest earthquake to strike the country – in 1934 – killed at least 8,519 in Nepal, as well as thousands more in neighboring India.
Just last night another strong aftershock, if you want to call it that, struck Nepal. Makes you wonder if this is just the few before at big one, by that I mean even larger than the upper 7’s we have already seen.
Turning to US news: Duke professor: Blacks riot because they’re lazier than Asians and have ‘strange’ un-American names Will this shit ever stop:
A North Carolina professor said over the weekend that he was suspended after he was caught writing in the New York Times comment section that there was a link between the Baltimore riots and “strange” names that black people had instead of having traditional white names.
According to WTVD, Duke University Professor Jerry Hough responded to a New York Timeseditorial titled “How Racism Doomed Baltimore” by suggesting that the author’s attitude was what was “wrong” with the black community.
“[T]he blacks get symbolic recognition in an utterly incompetent mayor who handled this so badly from beginning to end that her resignation would be demanded if she were white,” he wrote. “The blacks get awful editorials like this that tell them to feel sorry for themselves.”
Hough noted that “the Asians” faced discrimination throughout U.S. history: “They didn’t feel sorry for themselves, but worked doubly hard.”
“I am a professor at Duke University,” he admitted. “Every Asian student has a very simple old American first name that symbolizes their desire for integration. Virtually every black has a strange new name that symbolizes their lack of desire for integration.”
Hough added that blacks made the problem worse by refusing to date white people.
“It was appropriate that a Chinese design won the competition for the Martin Luther King state,” he concluded. “King helped them overcome. The blacks followed Malcolm X.”
Oh brother….read the rest of what was said and the reaction at the link.
Alan Caruba, contributing writer for the fringe right-wing Tea Party News Network, has some pretty impressive credentials. Founder of “The Center for Anxiety,” a conservative propaganda mill, Alan has spent his entire life on the quest for knowledge.
Not the kind of knowledge a contemporary student or scholar craves, mind you; Alan’s quest is for knowledge of how to be as ignorant as humanly possible.
At that he is a complete success. Caruba is a notorious science denier; for years he’s claimed that universities keep the myth alive for the benefit of…who knows who. He’s also a proponent of all things biblical, and he hates the LGBT community with a passion because he’s so much better than them.
The list goes on, straight down the lines of the fringe right. Alan Caruba is a holier than thou myth junkie whose views are appreciated by knuckle-dragging nitwits across America.
It’s no wonder he writes for the number one publication of the Tea Party.
That should put you in the mood for…
Op/ed via NYT: Housing Apartheid, American Style – NYTimes.com
A long read via HuffPo: 61 Years After Brown v. Board Of Education, Many Schools Remain Separate And Unequal
So as you take time to read those, let’s segue to a segment from John Oliver, on the current situation in US Education:
American students face a ridiculous amount of testing. John Oliver explains how standardized tests impact school funding, the achievement gap, how often kids are expected to throw up.
Well, what do you expect, after all that standardized testing…you go to college, right?
Then what happens?
Having a job in hand prior to commencement is a coveted security blanket, but not an easy one to land.
Still, some groups of college seniors and grad students have a better statistical chance of getting one before they enter the real world, according to a new survey.
Being a techie male puts you in the best position, says the annual Career Insight Survey from the career network AfterCollege.
Just 14 percent of college seniors have a job locked up before graduation this year, according to the findings, and only 13 percent of graduate students do.
But, among technology students, 28 percent have jobs in place. That’s far better than business students at 18 percent and life sciences students at 15 percent.
Meanwhile, 18 percent of men have a job being held for them compared to just 11 percent of women students.
“What’s particularly shocking this year is the clear discrepancy in job hunt success based on gender and area of study,” said Roberto Angulo, AfterCollege CEO.
This is particularly shocking?
More links…quick like:
I hope this Blue Bell situation gets settled soon, but it looks like it is not: Blue Bell Creameries lays off 1,450 employees due to listeria outbreak
Check it out, gays get rights before women do in Ireland. Sorry, I am so happy for this but it still stings a bit…Ireland appears set to say ‘yes’ in gay marriage vote – Al Jazeera English
However here in the States, Cruz needs to shut the fuck up: Addicting Info – Ted Cruz: Gay Marriage Is The ‘Greatest Threat To Religion In American History’
I can tell him where he can stick his threat to Religion too…
There is an interesting story here: Daughters of Diaspora | Al Jazeera America
Shaped by the decisions their mothers made, two cousins grapple with assimilation in both the U.S. and France
It seems this first is a long time coming: Juana Garcia, first female NY Water Taxi captain, takes helm – NY Daily News
As a call back to Emma Watson’s He for She Campaign: Salma Hayek Speaks Out on Hollywood’s Failures to Women
And while we are on the subject of Hollywood and women: Why Peggy Olson is the biggest badass on Mad Men
What is Mad Men really about? The series opens (“Smoke Gets in your Eyes”) with handsome, duplicitous, womanizing, alcoholic Donald Draper (or Dick Whitman) alone in a bar, observing patrons through smoke, seated exactly like the opaque window-jumper from the series credits.
However, the unique event which propels the first episode, and the brilliant series that follows, is Peggy Olson’s first day of employment at Sterling Cooper. And what a remarkable day it is. What begins with an awkward elevator ride with Ken Cosgrove (version 1.0), leads Peggy to personal and professional life lessons from Joan Holloway (later Harris), who sends her to a condescending, slut-shaming (and probably ex-lover) gynecologist where she scores her first birth control prescription. From there, we witness a terse Don Draper rebuff Peggy in a cringeworthy exchange, and watch her momentous day end as she guides drunk vulture Pete Campbell into her apartment for a one-night stand.
If you ever want to read a good analyses of Mad Men and the relationship of costumes to characters, go to TLo:
You will not be sorry….take a look at how they described the last time we saw Peggy, which touches on that first episode of Mad Men:
Cue the rockstar entrance:
Everyone out of my way. It’s my first day on my new job.
No perfectly put-together and professional suits here. She went for a sassy little dress (complete with a row of Pussy Power buttons) instead because Roger Sterling gave her permission to stop worrying about what others think of her. And of course, it’s got her signature power color, that mustard yellow, which has been a consistent motif for her going all the way back to Day One of her career:
Kick ass, Peggy. Kick ass.
And as Peggy navigates the tight hallways of McCann Erickson and embraces her future …
Don’s in as wide open a space as possible, with no idea of what is future’s going to be. We noted before that each final shot of this season has Don stationary, while the camera moves away from him, but this time he’s moving away from the camera himself. It feels less like things are being stripped away from him and more like he’s deliberately running away.
Seriously, their work on these Mad Style reviews is excellent. I think I will miss it just about as much as the show itself…which airs the final episode tonight.
Okay, more quick links, on Cuba:
Ben Latham-Jones has fully acquired Ealing Studios Entertainment, the production entity of the iconic London-based studio, it was announced today. Latham-Jones, a former creative director for Fox, will take over the role of head of studio from Barnaby Thompson, who will now segue into focusing on directing. Thompson will retain his shares in Ealing Studios Operations, which runs the stages and facilities side of the business, alongside partners Harry Handelsman and Uri Fruchtmann.
Latham-Jones hopes to turn Ealing into a hub of British filmmaking excellence, recalling its heyday under legendary exec Michael Balcon, who was responsible for classics including The Ladykillers and Kind Hearts and Coronets.
Which brings me full circle back to the film The Tales of Hoffmann…
“Made in England” is how Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger finally stamped their unworldly, otherworldly Tales of Hoffmann from 1951, an adaptation of the Jacques Offenbach opera, which is now on rerelease. It actually negated English and British cinema’s reputation for stolid realism. This is a hothouse flower of pure orchidaceous strangeness, enclosed in the studio’s artificial universe, fusing cinema, opera and ballet. It is sensual, macabre, dreamlike and enigmatic: like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. In his autobiography, Powell recalls talking to a United Artists executive after the New York premiere, who said to him, wonderingly: “Micky, I wish it were possible to make films like that … ” A revealing choice of words. It was as if what this executive thought he had seen was some kind of miraculous film that he still did not believe was “possible” in any sense. Robert Rounseville is the famous poet Hoffmann, in love with a dancer, played by Moira Shearer. Hoffmann regales tavern drinkers with tales of his three former loves: Olympia, Giulietta and Antonia – an automaton, a courtesan and an invalid, three different manifestations of love’s dangerous, seductive power. In each case Robert Helpmann plays the dark nemesis figure, with his extraordinary, skull-like face. You might compare this to the 1948 Powell and Pressburger film The Red Shoes, though in many ways it is even more hallucinatory.
Admirers and detractors of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s film “The Tales of Hoffmann,” from Offenbach’s opera, are equally vociferous. The newly restored edition, playing at Film Forum Friday through next Thursday, reminds us why. This 1951 film belongs to a bewildering number of categories. It’s lip-sync opera, multilayered meta-theater (indeed, a dizzyingly baroque exercise in overt artifice), kitsch extravaganza of luridly colored design (by Hein Heckroth) and keenly musical ballet.
And what’s more, it’s an over-the-top example of 1950s neo-Romanticism tipping over into surrealism; it’s not merely Anglophone but terminally English (the ostentatious quaintness of several accents is its most dated feature); it’s steeped in ideas from Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes (the femme fatale entrancing the hero, the dolls whose poignancy and vivacity raise questions about reality); and it’s an audacious essay in film fantasy, sui generis in its inventions and its splicing of different arts.
I think the next sentence best describes this film:
I love it except when I don’t. It’s crazy, twee, camp, exhilarating, trite, bold.
“Tales of Hoffmann” followed the success of Powell and Pressburger’s “The Red Shoes,” and again its dance heroine is Moira Shearer. Though “Hoffmann” doesn’t have the obsessive fervor of “The Red Shoes,” it’s a much better demonstration of Shearer’s dancing. (She was often the first to say so.) She’s again teamed with the dance-mime stars Léonide Massine and Robert Helpmann; we also see again the ballerina Ludmilla Tcherina.
Watching it again after many years, I’m startled to see just how pervaded by dance and choreography it is. Sometimes in small, scarcely dance moments, it captures the alchemy of movement meeting music better than anything in “Red Shoes.” No wonder: The choreographer is Frederick Ashton, one of the most tellingly musical choreographers of all time, and the conductor is Thomas Beecham, experienced in working with dance since the Diaghilev Ballets Russes, and with long experience with this opera. (His rhythmic élan is a source of life from the very opening bars.) Ashton also gives the film’s best performances, though only in supporting roles.
Best to read the rest of the review at the link.
Other reviews of the film here, if you have access:
Video clips here: Videos for The Tales of Hoffmann
There are three at that link.
But what I want to really share, is the significance of the film….
This week, Camerimage film festival presents a retrospective of the films of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. Last month at the Lumière Festival, Thelma Schoonmaker, the three-time Oscar winning editor and Powell’s widow, spoke about “The Tales of Hoffmann,” Powell and Pressburger’s 1951 adaptation of Jacques Offenbach’s opera, which is one of the films screening at Camerimage.
Martin Scorsese has influenced generations of new filmmakers. But who and what films influenced Scorsese? One front-runner: “The Tales of Hoffmann,” Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s 1951 adaptation of Jacques Offenbach’s opera, which liberated the duo from the constraints of early 1950s’ sound cinema.
In a video presentation made for and screened at the Lyon Lumière Festival in October, Scorsese admitted that he became “rather obsessed” by the movie.
That could be an understatement. Attending Lyon, Thelma Schoonmaker, Scorsese’s three-time Oscar winning editor and Powell’s widow, took a captivated audience through the film, shot in only 17 days, its singularity and huge impact on not only Scorsese but also George Romero. Cecil B. DeMille was another large admirer. Bertrand Tavernier pointed to “Blade Runner” as just one movie that channeled “Tales.”
It is fascinating. Read more…at the link.
Another look here:
Martin Scorsese said it was a big influence on his films “Taxi Driver” and “Raging Bull.” George Romero, director of the seminal zombie thriller “Night of the Living Dead,” said it was the reason he became a filmmaker.
“Ten Commandments” director Cecil B. DeMille wrote the British filmmakers in 1952, telling Powell and Pressburger: “For the first time in my life I was treated to Grand Opera where the beauty, power and scope of the music was equally matched by the visual presentation.”
” ‘Tales of Hoffmann’ was a daring and bold thing to try,” said Margaret Bodde, executive director of the Film Foundation, which Scorsese began 25 years ago to preserve and restore motion pictures. “The film is like an experimental film. If you read the description of the production, you wouldn’t have imagined it would have come out as well. It holds your interest in a way that you wouldn’t imagine a film like this would. ”
Now, 64 years after its initial release, “Tales of Hoffmann” has been digitally restored by the Film Foundation and the BFI National Archive in association with Studiocanal. Scorsese, Schoonmaker and Ned Price, vice president of mastering for Warner Bros. technical operations, supervised the restoration work, which was completed by Warner Bros. Motion Picture Imaging.
This restoration, which opens Friday for a weeklong run at Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre in Los Angeles, brings out all the detail in Hein Heckroth’s lush production and costume design and Christopher Challis’ vivid Technicolor cinematography. The new version also includes six minutes of footage that was cut before its original release, as well as an epilogue.
The original 35-millimeter Technicolor three-strip nitrate camera negative and 35-millimeter original soundtrack negative from the British Film Institute vaults were used for the restoration. The material for the added footage was also discovered at BFI.
Those involved with the Film Foundation Technicolor restorations of Powell-Pressburger’s “The Red Shoes” and “The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp” from 1943 had to contend with mold on the original negatives. But that wasn’t the case with “Tales of Hoffmann.”
“It was in quite good condition,” Price said. “We dealt with the normal shrinkage, which is inevitable with film. Over time, they lose moisture. They shrink and they warp differently. But we aligned the three strips, and they matched perfectly.”
Schoonmaker, who also supervised the restoration of “Red Shoes” and “Blimp,” said the team was “very lucky that we could concentrate on the color and the detail instead of having to spend a lot of money on cracks and mold and dirt.”
“Scorsese and I didn’t know what that was,” she said. “Finally, when we started getting all the elements together, the woman at the British Film Institute scoured the vaults and found the missing six minutes.”
Read more about the restored footage…
You can still catch this film on the big screen.
Look on that page for scheduled screenings of this film and other Powell and Pressburger films.
Events & Excursions– Portland, San Diego, Berkley…Albuquerque…Austin, go and check it out.
It is exciting because The Tales of Hoffmann is being shown in Nashville May 29th through June 4th…hopefully I can get up there to see it with my mom and Bebe…anyway, just be sure to see if you are lucky enough to be near a screening.
Well, this is a long thread for sure. Thanks to Boston Boomer who wrote all the threads this week, you sure are a hell of a trooper, super woman.
This is an open thread…yeah.
That is about right…still. (Not towards you all, but just how I’m feeling…still.) Certain manager of a big named store quit, leaving someone stuck holding the bag and since said shit store does not promote from within the store itself, once again, another fuck over. Sorry, it is just exhausting.
Now the cartoons.
First the Cagles:
This is an open thread.