KID SHIRT

Friday, February 24, 2006

RED DAWN

ITV4 is rapidly becoming my favourite TV channel right now, w/ its tea-time showings of "Monkey" and its raiding of ITC back-catalogue classics such as "Jason King", "Department S", "The Persuaders", "Man in a Suitcase", "Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased)", "UFO", etc... (bring back "The Zoo Gang", I say!)...it's a reminder of how great Brit TV was before Lynda LaPlante & Co. turned UK TV Drama into the dreary sludge that infects the box these days. I hate the way that modern TV Drama has to be about something...can't we just go back to making dumb programs about dead private investigators, good-looking telepathic european chicks, alien cops or foppish, tail-chasing, crime-busting dandies without being fucking ironic, or being grim and gritty, or worrying about viewer demographics, etc...

I've been enjoying "Life on Mars" (when I remember to watch it), but sometimes the writers seem determined to suck all the fucking life out of the program w/ all the constant life-style comparisons and all that winking to the camera: "Oh, look how bad our diet/clothes/cars/music was back then...look how un-PC and 'unsophisticated'...how working-class we all were...thank God things have changed for the better, eh?"

It would be loads better, I reckon, if it was just about a cop who'd had travelled back in Time (no need to explain why...there's far too much fucking explaining in modern drama...it's a cold that Brit TV has caught off Hollywood: bloody viral exposition...) and fought crime in 1973; who ate greasy food, chain-smoked rollies, drank Newkie Brown, danced to Glam, pinched birds' arses at work and then shagged 'em after the pub closed, but he's not in a coma, he really is from the Future...

See, there's no need for all these endless sub-texts and socio-cultural juxtapositions that TV drama-writers foist on us to shore-up their sensible, grown-up, wet-lib version of reality...they're just needless distractions; they're anchors and brake-pads on our winged-feet; red herrings to divert us, to stop us from flying out into the Realm of Endless Possibilities, the Real Now, not the Fake Now inhabited by our gluten-addled, REM-dozing zombiehivemind selves: I don't fucking care if the cop in "Life on Mars" never gets back to The Present; as if that's important (not to me. it ain't), getting back to The real World (whose Real World?)...What's so special about it anyway? They only want us Here so we can work for Them...Why should Now be better than Then, or Here be better than There?

What, you think I give a fuck about your Post-Millennial Blairite Values? My distain for 'Now' has nothing to do w/ The (actual) Past or being ironically 'Retro'...

My own personal backwards-yearnings aren't so much about trying to retreat into a mythologised, rose-tinted 'past', they're more about opening up some half-forgotten cultural cul-de-sacs...chipping a hole in the wall at the end of the road, then climbing through and exploring the garden we missed first time round. I want to deliberately take a wrong turning in time and find myself Somewhere Else; I wanna occupy a cultural space that I can fill w/ stuff that's different to the crap that "They" have given us to distract us, to sedate us, to keep us quiet...hmm: that's what I like about blogging and bloggers; there's a lot more of that Good Stuff out here in Dissensual Myth-Space or wherever-the-fuck it is we are...


Ah, but fuck it: ITV4 surpassed themselves last night by showing "Red Dawn". Yep, that's right:

"RED DAWWWWWWWWWWWN!"

T-that's the sub-Brat Pack movie in wh/ Patrick Swayze and The Wolverines (aka the Kids from Fame) take on the entire Red Army and win, after the US is invaded by the USSR and its Boshevik pals. Russians are portrayed as overweight, balding thickoes w/ big moustaches who'd rape yr grand-daughter soon as look at her, and Cubans are just, well, cowardly, snivelling, lazy wetbacks...



*Sigh* At least these Reaganite pinknecks had a goal in life (to off as many Ivans as possible, armed only w/ Dad's rusty old hunting-rifle and a mullet), unlike the teens that inhabit comtempo films like the "Final Destination" franchaise: vain, self-obsessed little shits w/ no values or ambitions except to cheat The Reaper. At least Patrick & Co. were willing to lay down their lives for what they belived in...




But see! See how I laugh and sneer at how we were back then, back in the eighties...the sheer, accreted weight of cultural bio-mass that Post-Modernism has dumped on our shoulders: all that irony, all that self-referentiality in films, music and art, that false sense of moving forward, of surging thru History...it provides us w/ the shameful illusion that we are cleverer, more knowing, than we were back then, and that things have changed so much for the better...



But, still, it's a fucking cracking film...a totally Non-Guilty pleasure, if you've never seen it. Somewhere, in the back of my mind, there's a vague idea for a film pitch brewing: thousands...no, millions of armed, pissed-off Mexicans surging over the razor-wired US border wall in a re-run of The Alamo, using machetes to hack down those armed greyhair republican civilian volunteer busybody vigillante border patrol-groups...surging into California to take back what they think rightfully belongs to them.

Now, that might make for an interesting Invasion Movie. Me, I'm off to watch "Jason King".