Posts from 11th October 2006

11
Oct 06

How clean is your band?

Do You See + FT/66 comments • 3,625 views

The discerning televisual fan will be aware of the vacuum currently residing in the schedules between the 7.30pm end of Hollyoaks First Look and the 9pm commencement of Ghost Whisperer. There are only so many times one can flick between Puff Daddy jiggling next to the Lead Pussycat on TMF and the startlingly abhorrent animated pig on Hits!TV.

But there’s no need to wear out the remote! For a gleaming nugget of programming genius lies buried beneath the disappointing Dog Borstal on BBC Three. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you: Grime Scene Investigation.

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What The Cover Of King Crimson’s “In The Court Of The Crimson King” Would Look Like…

FT + I Hate Music5 comments • 2,384 views

If it had a cold.

If an album cover could get a cold

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Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind (1984)

Do You See + FT4 comments • 642 views

Hayao Miyazaki’s first film as writer-director, and by a staggering cosmic coincidence, the first film I got from Amazon DVD rental. Having read and liked some of his blockbuster manga telling this story, I was keen to see this. Was I disappointed? Not at all, but I wasn’t overwhelmed either. The problem I had is that Miyazaki’s themes and concerns and tropes run so true through all his films, so Nausicaa didn’t feel quite as fresh as it must have done in 1984.

The film has a capable girl heroine, an ecological theme, a concern with aerial war and its effects. The resolution lies in understanding and embracing the laws and cycles governing the film’s universe, not in trying to defy them. The villains are not precisely redeemable, but the film doesn’t offer any catharsis by killing them off either. Even before you get to Miyazaki’s wonderful draughtsmanship and design sense, these are all things which make his films a stark contrast to Western animated movies. However if the last five cartoons you watched were all also Miyazaki’s, Nausicaa through no fault of its own seems less of a standout.

So I’ll just mention a couple of crasser things I noticed:

1) The synth-rock soundtrack is really boshin’!

2) The sequences in the jungle with the gently falling spores and sad music really really reminded me of the equally haunting foresty-Deku Tree bits at the start of Ocarina of Time, so much so that I wonder if they were a direct inspiration. I don’t know enough about anime or games to assert this more confidently though.

Pub Science: It’s Official!

FT + Proven By SciencePost a comment • 1,253 views

Science course “more suited to pub” – a debate that strikes pretty close to Proven By Science’s original aims, this. (Perhaps “pub science” will birth “punk science” just as pub rock etc.) I think the new 21st Century Science GCSE – or “Scientific Literacy” to give it its proper name – sounds like a great idea, or I would if I had much faith in the examination system and its ability to stimulate children anyway. The BBC points out that the new exam is designed to be taken in tandem with a more fundamental general science paper, and this seems a sensible pairing: I am all for curricula that encourage children to respond critically to the world around them, rather than vaguely hope that they have the nous to transfer the techniques they pick up studying classical topics.

Anyway saying “this course is more suited to the pub” is about as good advertising as you could want for 15-16 year olds. I wonder if there’s a Beer Science module.