Open Thread for Friday, January 23, 2009

Open Thread for Friday, January 23, 2009.

We spend all our time here overthinking things for you… But in the past year of running the site, we’ve discovered that you’re every bit the overthinkers that we are.

So here’s a new feature: a weekly open thread for you to discuss anything you want. Movies, TV, music, comments about the site, rants, insults, interesting links (though gratuitous self-linkers will be deleted and spanked)… whatever is on your overthinking mind.

Let’s try not to be dicks, but caveat scriptor… there are some serious overthinkingers reading.

23 Comments on “Open Thread for Friday, January 23, 2009”

  1. Matthew Belinkie OTI Staff #

    Would Mother Teresa, who spent her life working in the slums of India, love Slumdog Millionaire or HATE it?


  2. mlawski OTI Staff #

    I think she would have disliked the Who Wants to Be a Millionaire aspect. Something tells me it wouldn’t be her style.


  3. Matthew Belinkie OTI Staff #

    I really really hope they get Sean Connery to announce Best Picture. And then when he opens the envelope, he says, “YOU THE MAN NOW, SLUMDOG!”


  4. fenzel #

    Is personal wealth presented as potential salvation from earthly troubles?

    Because yeah, she probably would have a pretty huge problem with that.


  5. Matthew Belinkie OTI Staff #

    What if, at the end of the movie, he gives all the money to a charity to rescue other slumdogs from a life of poverty and flashbacks. THEN does she like it?


  6. fenzel #

    Yes, she does.

    In a side note —

    RESOLVED: Benjamin Button was lame.

    All in favor? Opposed?


  7. Trevor #

    Is the Snuggie merely a comfortable garment for protection against bitter cold, or a means of initiation into a powerful relgious cult that requires its members to always wear a Snuggie when going to sporting events and other public locations so that they can be asked “what is a Snuggie?” and proceed to spread the word about the Snuggie and its ability to make your life complete? Are there “Snuggie parties” where married couples switch partners by virtue of wearing the same-color Snuggie and engage in sexual acts within the same Snuggie? Are they machine washable? Why does the Snuggie come with a free booklight? Is this some subterfuge on the part of the American Library Association to promote comfortable literacy?


  8. mlawski OTI Staff #

    @Trevor: Yes.


  9. Gab #

    Re: Mother Teresa

    I think she would have liked the movie, even if she doesn’t like the *original* concept of the show it uses as a backdrop. But I think she would like its use in the film, for it serves as an important story-telling device. For the movie itself, it is a microcosm of the corruption and evil Jamal encountered his whole life, and it serves to show how he is still Good, despite being surrounded by all of that filth. For Jamal, it is his tool to get the attention of the woman he loves- it is never about the money. I also think she would have liked how a person from those slums used the experiences of their life for a good purpose.

    Both _Iron Man_ and _TDK_ got snuffed for Oscar nods, eh? I was expecting _Quantum of Solace_ to get some of the techie nominations, too, by the way.

    And I *seriously* think the producers keep effing with the storage on _Top Chef_. It was Fridgegate a few weeks ago, this time it was Freezergate. Come ON…


  10. Gab #

    Oh, neat new feature, btw.

    And uh… The little security thingy for commenting is gone, was that an accident?


  11. stokes OTI Staff #

    My feeling on the Snuggie is that it’s a terrible product, but very cleverly advertised. No one in their right mind would buy one… but if I’m lying on the couch watching TV, and I’m huddled under a blanket (like, because it’s 1:20 AM in the middle of January), and I reach for the remote, I do find myself wishing that there was some way to keep my arms warm. Now, there are actually several ways:

    1) Put on a sweater
    2) Turn up the thermostat
    3) Do not reach for the remote after all, and instead continue watching a rerun of the Golden Girls

    and then a commercial comes on, and I realize that there’s a fourth way: pick up my credit card and cell phone (which are both in my pants, and thus under the blanket), order a Snuggie, and wait ten to twelve business days.

    I didn’t want to buy one before seeing the ad; after seeing it, well, I still don’t want to buy it. But there’s a minute there, thanks to the particular context in which I always seem to see the ad, where I would accept one as a gift.


  12. Gab #

    Whether you want one or not, Stokes, wouldn’t you have to admit that it’s a brilliant idea that is cleverly marketed and pushed? And is there any room for compromise, like, say, commissioning a friend to sew one for you at 1/3 or less the cost- or even sewing it yourself?


  13. lee OTI Staff #

    I must admit, I’d never heard of a Snuggie before reading about it here. To learn more, I went to, and now I must….buy….join cult…

    Re: Iron Man, I’ve never been as big of a fan of that movie as everyone around me has seemed to be. Relative to other superhero movies, I’d put it on a par with the first Spiderman movie, but below either Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, or even the first two X-Men movies.

    My 2 yuan.


  14. Matthew Wrather #

    It depends. Ironman has less of the epic quality that both the X-Men franchise and the Nolanized Batman reboot have in spades, but that’s why I like it. It’s extremely fleet while the other two are ponderous.

    Now I’m a Goddard fan. I have seen all five hours of Bertolucci’s Novacento. In one sitting. Believe me, I can do ponderous. But come on, not in a summer movie…

    (This, for me, goes a long way toward explaining what’s wrong with the current Bond reboot… though Casino Royale was awesome, both of the Craig movies are ponderous.)


  15. Matthew Wrather #

    In other news…

    I saw Fleet Foxes on SNL last weekend. (Yes, I watch SNL. Wanna fight about it?)

    I was actually kind of surprised to like an SNL musical guest. (Last week was Taylor Swift, who is not so much a singer as a rhythmic chanter of a single note.)

    But Fleet Foxes… yeah. I thought, wow, kind of refreshing retro country rock. Am I wrong? Should I not shell out for the record?


  16. mlawski OTI Staff #

    @Wrather: Not only do you want to buy Fleet Foxes’ self-titled album, but you also want to buy the Sun Giant EP. The song they played on SNL (or at least the one song I saw them play), Mykonos, is on the EP.


  17. Gab #

    Wrather, I’m comin’ atcha.

    Re: Ponderous, I kind of disagree with you. If not in a summer movie, when? Why NOT in a summer movie? What’s a summer movie, anyway?

    Re: Fleet Foxes, To each their own. I actually like Taylor Swift *and* Fleet Foxes- the former because I like to analyze lyrics and turn them into stories, and her lyrics are very conducive to that; and the latter reminded me of the Shins (and the Eagles, nonetheless) the first time I heard them (“Mykonos”), and I have grown to like them as their own entity since. It’s your $$$, though, dude.


  18. Kelley #

    Re: Taylor Swift, is anyone else incredibly annoyed by the song that compares her love to Romeo and Juliet, and then she and the boy end up happily ever after? Or am I the only one that cringes every time I hear it simply because of the failed literary allusion?


  19. Trevor #

    Re: Summer movies and ponderousness, I think it’s something of a fad now to make your summer blockbuster more “relevant” by adding a pinch of gravity to all the high-flying derring-do. I think the trend started around the time of the second Spider-Man (a far superior follow-up to the original if only because it was no longer burdened with having to provide the initial backstory of how it is that a nerdy guy could climb walls and shoot gunk from his wrists, a problem that also sidelined “Jesus of Nazareth”). You had the chance to see that being a superhero wasn’t all it’s cracked up to be, and that there is a real human cost to being able to leap tall buildings at a single bound.

    I think the current trend is commendable, if not necessarily always the way to go (God help us if Nolan decides to turn “He-Man” into a giant three-hour angst-fest). I can remember when superhero movies were badly made and poorly acted (anyone remember the gem “Captain America”? You think “Dark Knight” set back the genre, go check out that beauty if you dare). Sometimes you want popcorn during the summer, but sometimes you want a good, well-plotted steak with extra A1 sauce. You just have to know when to tuck in for a long summer meal, and when to get it to go and take it home, curled up in your Snuggie because you have no real friends…


  20. Trevor #

    Re: Taylor Swift and Romeo/Juliet, I think the fact that she writes her own material doesn’t bode well for her haters. The flash-in-the-pan pop-tarts of the past either burned out after a few years (Backstreet Boys) or became musical legends due to their enduring icon status (The Beatles…yes, they were silly throwaway pop music when they first started). I have no issue with Ms. Swift (though that “Teardrops” song got overplayed back last year or two, whenever the hell it was popular). I do like to think that she might be aware of how “R/J” ends, even if her tweener fans don’t.


  21. Gab #

    Re: Romeo and Juliet, I think that play is overrated, anyway, so I don’t really care if she gets it wrong. But you know, the costumes in the video are all wrong, I noticed that. They’re pretty and frilly, which is all the makers were going for; and I don’t really *care* about it, but I did notice.


  22. Trevor #

    I suspect they were going for more “Pride and Prejudice” than R/J. All Jane Austen’s novels (well, the two that I’ve read) end happily for the heroine.

    Yes, I’ve read Jane Austen. I even liked both books. Nothing wrong with that, speaking as a nominally hetero guy.


  23. Gab #

    I heart Jane Austen. But what I meant was the periods didn’t match. The outfits Taylor has on are from something trying to look sort of like mid-to-late eighteenth century England, sort of Revolutionary War era, I guess you could say, while the guy’s outfits were, indeed, very Jane Austen-esque.


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