This Week in Geek (18-24/02/08)


Been a hell of a week at work. Worst one yet this year. I thought a few times of making myself feel pretty by buying something geeky, but no energy for it. Consuming is hard work!

Did finally get a DVD of all our video efforts made for improv shows this year. The opening theme has me reading Showcase Presents: Aquaman vol.1, so I should mention it here.


Though we had an improv show in the middle of the week, I wouldn't really say we did anything "geeky" in it. It was perhaps the lightest show this troupe ever presented, but also one of the more entertaining. Gauge your audience, I always say. This was a younger crowd than most, out for some laughs. Even the "nerd" improv we always allow for, one based on Chaucer's work, was pretty comedic.

The one real accomplishment this week is that I flipped the tape on Sam Peckinpah's Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid. A flawed masterpiece, it may just turn out to be my favorite of the "last westerns" (by which I mean that subgenre of westerns that details, either through plot or style, the end of that era). The story could be described as "a man who doesn't want to run is chased by a man who doesn't want to catch him", and is a gorgeously apocalyptic vision of the West. Here is a Old West that has grown into a static and aimless wasteland where one simply waits to die. In a way, it's a tragic parody of the classic western. I can't get Bob Dylan's score out of my head, and Slim Pickens' death immediately went to my list of favorite death scenes. In the end, it's really about Garrett killing the best part of himself, and if it makes the movie sound poetic, it is. Two versions are included on the DVD, though neither is the long-lost theatrical cut (no matter, since it was rush-edited into theaters by the studio), and each has a commentary track by the usual Peckinpah experts, which I like to invite into my living room regularly. The other DVD extras are a little amateurish however, but they do include a couple of nice songs about Peckinpah by his friend Kris "Billy the Kid" Kristofferson.

Someone Else's Post of the Week
Mike Sterling's Progressive Ruin is an excellent source of commented comics news, retailer observations and good humor, so while I probably liked everything he posted this week (pretty much any week), I'm going to recommend the changing of the guard for Wonder Woman. She's BUSTIN' LOOSE! Ladies and gentlemen, the origin of her new, bronze age bustier!

Ok, I've got to get my annual Oscar party going, so I'll talk to y'all tomorrow.


rob! said...

its weird, re: Pat Garrett. Dylan's performance isn't really good, per se, in that he doesn't fit in the movie, to me at least--yet you can't take your eyes off him.

he wrote "Knockin on Heaven's Door" almost over night--amazing.

Siskoid said...

Dylan calls attention to himself without really meaning to. It's a casting thing, and one of the movie's flaws. Though I really enjoy the scene where he's reading off canned goods as an odd counterpoint to Garrett intimidating an outlaw. Surreal and beautiful in its way.

The Knockin on Heaven's Door scene is THE magical moment for me however. I know I said it in the main body of the post, but it blows me away every time.


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