King of Cups: Rereading Tim Powers’s “Last Call”

Fantasist (and mackerel-snapper, if we're counting) Tim Powers does high-concept tales in which hard-bitten characters struggle to learn to love one another and escape complex, unforgiving systems of magical dark forces. Last Call is probably my second-favorite of his fantasies of salvage--the greatest is Declare aka "the one where demons fight the Cold War"--and as I reread it I loved it even more than I did the first time around. The high concept this time is "war for succession among the gods … [Read more...]

American Ice Theater in Chicago: “The Kind of Show Skating Needs”

I went to Stars on Ice last week and I loved it! But I really wish I could go to this show, on May 31: ...American Ice Theatre's goal is to make artistic skating and ice theatre accessible to everyone - both skaters and audiences. "It is a model that can extend the life of a skater and allow for more career opportunities. There are talented national and world level skaters that don’t make the Olympic team yet are beautiful to watch artistically. We are an artistic outlet for skaters to continue … [Read more...]

Roderick Mead’s St Michael for the Modern Age

via the extraordinary Monster Brains … [Read more...]

Colonialism Isn’t Just a River in Egypt, You Know: “A Fan’s Notes”

on white supremacy as a form of "I like thinking about it" addictive denial. All the racial stuff in this book is really fascinating. IMO this specific passage gains power from the cartoonishness of the black characters--they're fantasy figures dancing through the sickened imaginations of the (also cartoony) white man--although at least one of the black characters in AFN is only as cartoonish as the whites. Anyway there's so much in this passage about the nature of white racial fantasy, … [Read more...]

“The Uncomfortable”: Deliberately Inconvenient Everyday Objects

These are glorious:more; via Matt Jones among others. … [Read more...]

What Keeps Mankind Alive: 1995 Theological Vampire Flick “The Addiction”

"All sin tends to be addictive, and the terminal point of addiction is what is called damnation."--possibly Auden? Attributed to Auden, anyway. For a while now I've been trying to hunt down Abel Ferrara's ultra-artsy, not-on-DVD vampire movie, The Addiction. It's on YouTube again now--see it before it vanishes!--at a link you can find here, along with Kindertrauma's reflections on the film. I watched it last night and suspect I need to watch it at least once more before I have any firm … [Read more...]

High Command: Burt Lancaster and Tony Curtis in (and on) “Trapeze”

I've watched a few movies lately which I haven't posted about here. My one-line review of 1952's underworld soap opera Casque d'Or is basically, "Simone Signoret eats cheese off a knife. Thanks France!" Slightly longer review: Signoret is sultry in a layered performance; she's great at conveying irony and intelligence with just a quirk of her lips.Even more fun was last Saturday's adventure, 1956's Trapeze. It's playing again this Thursday at AFI, so you can catch it on the big screen! It's … [Read more...]


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