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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

When The Messaging Eats The Medium

I am about to turn 50. I have lived through the days of wonder in the film business, much as my father lived through them in the real world as he saw the car become mass produced, the Depression in the US, war across the globe, man walk on the moon, and ultimately, cellular phones and the dawn of the internet.

People in their 60s have lived long enough to remember the end of the studio system era, the flailing of the late 60s and early 70s (which didn’t just glitch businesswise to create the opportunity to make great films, but was also connected to political turmoil that influenced the work), the corporatization of the studios, the birth and explosion of wide release, VHS, DVD, and now streaming.

Of course, you would have to be in your 70s or 80s to really remember the one big delivery shift in the first 70 years of “filmed entertainment”… the birth of television.

As I screened Into The Storm, I was thinking of Twister, which was the first studio DVD… released less than 18 years ago. That’s not a short time, but given the ubiquity of the DVD and now, the hasty retreat of the form as catalog content moves to streaming, it’s remarkable.

The Great Train Robbery premiered in 1903. Sound didn’t break through until 1927. Color started showing up in the mid-30s. We went through about 40 years until the next big things… cable TV (and HBO with it) and VHS. In the 40 or so years since that, we have been through paradigm shift after paradigm shift, making progress both in delivery systems and in the technology of film (or what we still tend to call “film”).

Historically, most of the big changes in the movie industry have taken place because of failure. For instance, Warner Bros was in trouble financially and thus, The Jazz Singer… Fox was having a bad run and released 3 of its biggest hits on the burgeoning VHS platform… and digital projection has been driven by studios looking to cut distribution costs.

But I sense a major shift in the film business lately that isn’t so easy to turn into a snappy news headline. As the corporate parents of the major studios seek to turn the film business into a commodity, less vulnerable to the ups and down of success and/or quality filmmaking, they have also sought to turn media coverage of the film business into a commodity as well.

Of course, publicists have always wanted to control media. And media has always flexed muscles of independence.

But we have a different media landscape in 2014 than in the past. The “freedom” of the internet has led to a much lower bar for independence in journalism. And the financials on “Old Media” have become so bad that the standards for not only independence, but for what qualifies as News amongst the legacy outlets have been considerably lowered.

The following clip was clearly intended to be funny… but as a professional journalist, the laughs make me sick because they are so reflective of the reality. Internet didn’t kill the newspaper star… the newspaper star is willingly cutting the throat of journalism in the name of instant, short-lived popularity…

And as long as I am showing you video, here is another hilarious/horrible piece that aired after I started writing this entry…

I started thinking about all this a lot in recent months, but particularly after seeing Guardians of The Galaxy, a mediocrity of a movie and a likely hit. (Ed Note: I wrote this before the release of the film… and it is, indeed, a Top 5 summer hit.)

This is the point when some of you start mumbling that I hate Marvel or comic book movies in general, so my opinion doesn’t matter. And on some level that is fine. But mostly, it’s not. It is a symptom of a disease that is not just about me or you or Marvel or any other specific film or genre or franchise.

Forget about the idea that critics no longer matter. We don’t. At least not in the major studio release universe. There is a real and measurable influence on indies, particularly on a city-by-city basis. But against the onslaught of advertising dollars, critics can make neither Shinola nor shit. People are inundated with the materials and they make their choices.

But what I find truly scary is the machinery that clouds the minds of even some of the most intelligent people I know and read about how film is approached. (The cabal is even smaller and more authoritarian in TV… but that’s a different conversation in many ways.) Media is being managed like… well… the audience. Marketed to within an inch of its life. Abused and manipulated. Pre-sold becoming preordained.

Journalists are human beings, after all. The same way that film marketers convince ticket buyers who care about opening weekend to commit to going to Movie X on opening weekend regardless of reviews or even early word-of-mouth, studios are now convincing the media. And once that commitment is made, like most human beings, journalists don’t want to change their minds.

I have witnessed the phenomenon on Broadway for years now. People pay $100+ for tickets and suddenly, every show deserves a standing ovation every night. This devalues those shows that really deserve spontaneous passion from the audience. But, as people will argue, there are great performances and good moments in pretty much every Broadway show or it would not have gotten to Broadway. Or there is an actor that we, as an audience, really really love. So what’s the harm in showing appreciation to hard working actors and crew for doing their job for our pleasure?

“Harm” is a relative thing. We are talking about movies (and/or theater). Can there really be any harm? No one gets ill from being disappointed at a movie. No one dies from having a hyper-inflated experience at a movie caused by their determination to not be disappointed after investing emotionally.

But more and more, my sense is that media is not only a part of the packaging of a film, but is expected to be a part of the packaging for the film. A junket, which used to be about spreading the word to cities that were not located within the natural geographic sphere of the film industry, is now – in an era in which every print interview and every piece of video tends to end up online – about density of message.

And no outlet is above it.

Not one.

The most effective lie is one that is mostly true. And the best manipulation is one in which the subject does not think they are being manipulated at all… to the degree to which they will fight anyone who even suggests that there is a problem worth considering.

I guess that what scares me the most is that outlets that would consider themselves journalistic no longer feel compelled to actually be trusted by the reader. They have stopped taking that responsibility. Nowadays, they are just conduits of information, not arbiters of it.

I am not saying that every journalist is a suck-up or is a shill. But (almost) everyone seems to be hanging on by their fingertips to such a degree that the sin of omission or self-imposed. blindness is just a few Hail Marys, Our Fathers, and a couple of “everyone is doing it… can’t be avoided”s from absolution.

I am not pure. No one is pure. I expect no one to be pure. But there is a big space between virginal innocence and giving it all up.

Film marketers, who are much smarter than most of you understand, have figured out how to maximize every element they have in selling their products. They fail, too. But their ability to turn out the media instead of answer to it is… just breathtaking.

And it doesn’t matter whether I like The Product or not. Don’t lean on that to absolve yourself of thought about this issue. It’s not about the product. It’s about the end game for journalism. It’s not about fireworks, it’s about the constant flow of solid, clean journalism on a daily basis.

It’s about the authoritative voice and whether it will ever come back in force. The only way it can is for journalists to hold themselves accountable to the degree to which they can earn authority and maintain it.

And it gets harder – for all of us… for any of us – every single day.

Perhaps this is something to think about the next time some form of advertising is positioned and embraced as content. Because if ads are content, than content can be wholly about manipulation and not about truth. And as soon as we lose the ability or will to distinguish the two, we are finished as a meaningful culture. And if our culture is lost, our nation (you know… the serious shit) will soon follow.

49 Responses to “When The Messaging Eats The Medium”

  1. LYT says:

    The broad strokes sound good, but out of curiosity, because you brought it up specifically…what kind of Guardians of the Galaxy story is it that you want to see but aren’t seeing (aside from reviews that aren’t overwhelmingly positive)? Or is it that you don’t want to see any stories about it at all?

    Like, when it seemed as though Rocket creator Bill Mantlo was getting screwed out of residuals, and then it turned out he wasn’t, and Marvel did damage control and held a private screening for him – that kind of story?

  2. Bitplayer says:

    I read this twice. I really don’t understand what you are complaining about. Guardians is pretty good. This country has had 10 years of war and 5 years of a shitty economy. Maybe we don’t wanna watch some Merchant Ivory bullshit. Maybe we want to have some fun escapism at the movies and not torture ourselves. Most people don’t go to the movies to feel shitty, life does that just fine.
    These comic book movies are candy and we all should be able to eat candy if they want to. I didn’t see Guardians because of marketing. I saw it because I had a shit week and wanted to have fun for 90 minutes and it looked. Mission was accomplished. If I ever want to feel like jumping out a window I’ll watch Mood Indigo again.

  3. Hallick says:

    This piece would read a lot better if you gave a specific example of the manipulations connected to a particular movie and point out what the media did versus what a stronger, more independent media would have done in the past. Timeline it out from publicity to opening weekend, name real names, name the studio’s methods, etc. I get your feelings but I’m not getting your reference points.

  4. Hallick says:

    “The broad strokes sound good, but out of curiosity, because you brought it up specifically…what kind of Guardians of the Galaxy story is it that you want to see but aren’t seeing (aside from reviews that aren’t overwhelmingly positive)? Or is it that you don’t want to see any stories about it at all?”

    Based on other things he wrote recently, I think one thing David wants to see is reporting that isn’t just acting as a completely compliant megaphone for the studios to blare semi-phony box office numbers every Sunday morning. But again, without specific examples, that’s just conjecture on my part.

  5. MAGGA says:

    I think most movie writers would rather be writing about and hyping Boyhood right now. The fact that they’re writing about a talking squirrel or whatever tells me their not in control of their messaging.

  6. Joe Leydon says:

    Within the past year, I have had off-the-record conversations with… well, let’s just say more than one publicist who specializes in non-tentpole movies. And I have asked: If you could choose between how things were when you had, at most, 3-4 print media (dailies and/or weeklies) in every major market, and how things are now, what would you choose? Each time, I’ve gotten the same answer. Leading me to wonder: In terms of spreading the good word about cinema, has the Internet really been much good for anything but tentpole movies? Seriously: I know there are a lot of world-class movie sites, where fine young critics write knowledgeably and passionately about indies, imports and other non-tentpole fare. But do any of these sites really reach and influence as many people as dailies and weeklies did back in the day? And how many of the new generation of film critics can make themselves heard above the din orchestrated by the system David describes?

  7. Hcat says:

    Hey

    HEY

    Bit player you can not dismiss the makers of Remains of the Day in support of marvel entertainment no. Xy1492. That’s just blasephemey. No matter the quality of Guardians, and I’m convinced that’s it’s quite good, you cannot act like its some breath of fresh air in an overly preachy and turgid season full of deep message movies. You want fun? Room with a View is fun, it’s an effervescent gem of a movie.

    I know this is nothing about Dave’s post, which is a review of media not of the film, so I am continuing the derailment, but Christ, people do not see movies to feel good they see movies to feel something, and the idea that any adverse mention of a fun fanboy delight brings down derision of actually talented film makers that didn’t make films by committee or focus groups is shameful.

    Movies do not need simply to be fun and disposable distractions. They can be serious depictions of the human condition and the struggle of our fellow man…….with a little bit of sex.

    (I probably mangled the reference, but you want a fun movie-there is a fun movie)

  8. Joe Leydon says:

    But Hcat: There’s a lot to be said for making people laugh. Did you know that that’s all some people have? It isn’t much, but it’s better than nothing in this cockeyed caravan.

  9. SamLowry says:

    Nobody’s been complaining about “fun escapism”–we’ve been complaining about stupid-ass escapism.

    For example, I’ve been attempting to watch WRATH OF KHAN on Netflix and it’s actually difficult because I memorized the movie long ago–I get excited anticipating Khan’s fingers wrapping around the handle on Chekov’s spacesuit, the nameless crewmember swirling his helmet around to get the ear slug into a better location, all of it! To me, it is the best documentation of “fun escapism” ever made and practically perfect in every way (however, that “Newton, Einstein, Surak” line is wince-inducing; I’ll admit to that).

    INTO DARKNESS, however, is a steaming pile of shit. So, too, are the TRANSFORMERS and LUCY and MAN OF STEEL and so many other tentpoles of recent memory. Nolan’s Batfilms are packed with logic flaws, the Marvel movies require tedious third-act battles…need I go on? Are you telling me that it’s impossible for today’s studios, today’s producers, today’s writers to come up with a movie half as good as a movie that came out 32 years ago?

    If there’s some formula that’s dictating what appears on screens–some Robert McKee/Syd Field mindworm that infected everyone in Hollywood–then it needs to be eradicated, tout suite. Folks were able to write great screenplays long before the gurus came along and I’m hoping they can do so again.

  10. Hallick says:

    Yeah, I was going to say something about that Merchant-Ivory jab, but then I wondered who the hell cites Merchant-Ivory as today’s counter-programming when their movies peaked in popularity, what, TWENTY-ONE YEARS AGO? Why not throw your elbows at those ever-present Ingmar Bergman films while you’re at it, too?

    I disagree that people don’t go to the movies to feel good because humans are beautifully perverse creatures who can feel good at a movie like Guardians of the Galaxy and a movie like Calvary. Voyeurism and catharsis cover the spectrum.

  11. Hallick says:

    “And how many of the new generation of film critics can make themselves heard above the din orchestrated by the system David describes?”

    When I was growing up in the 80′s, you not only had Siskel & Ebert but you could also see Leonard Maltin on Entertainment Tonight, Joel Siegel on Good Morning America, Gene Shalit on the Today Show, various local critics on independent stations, etc. And hell, I could hear film critics with their own two hour shows on the radio every weekend.

    I literally do not know if there is anything like that on television now. Can anyone here imagine a day when a movie critic would be a semi-regular on something like the Tonight Show again?

  12. LYT says:

    Hallick – for that to happen, said critic would have to be someone with movie-star looks.

    i.e. not like most critics I know.

  13. LYT says:

    PS for those who think today’s movie hits are so much dumber than in past years, I offer Revenge of the Nerds.

    Great in its day, absolutely fucking despicable by today’s morality, as it probably should be.

  14. Bitplayer says:

    For those shitting on my Merchant Ivory mention I did mention an actual movie that’s playing right now. I guess nobody’s either seen Moon Indigo or feels like defending. I mentioned Merchant Ivory because I found those movies tedious and boring. I can’t imagine those movies getting any traction today.

    Smalowry I too like Wrath of Khan, it’s awesome. I also hated Star Trek into Darkness. I hated it with the heat of 1,000 suns. I’d rather Watch Khan but nobody is making Khan so I’ll watch what’s out. Guardians is a lesser movie but I enjoyed it just the same. Joe I do like to laugh but I can count on one hand the movies that actually made me laugh out loud recently. They don’t make comedies anymore.

    With comedies I don’t think it’s just about money, comedies are harder to “produce” and get right. It’s a higher level of difficulty. You can’t simply throw money at them in hopes of getting a bigger return. That’s actually possible with comic book “spectacle” movies.
    I tried to watch “Let’s Be Cops” a few weeks ago during a screening. I stayed a half hour and bailed. It was horribly unfunny, just like the TV show the two actors star in, and showed no signs of improvement.

  15. Bob Burns says:

    This is a blog post with observations that deserve weeks of careful writing and research. As was said above I would love to see several specific examples, too. Thanks for the piece.

    For me, the realization began to set in when I first noticed the bad reporting and worse editing of the entertainment coverage in the NY Times.

  16. Nick says:

    Until I can literally stream ANY movie that I want, at ANY point in the day, the idea of streaming content and watching suff via Hulu and Netflix instant seems so stupid. Physical Media POWER. Don’t let it die, people!!!

  17. Stella's Boy says:

    I don’t think the Internet is much good for anything but tentpole movies Joe. And the content for those tentpole movies is fluff and nonsense. The sites publish initial announcements/casting decisions, and then set visits, and then interviews conducted during the set visits, and then the reviews. And it sure seems like everything is raved about, everything is great. They are more or less PR divisions for the major studios. Even if the review is negative, it’s been preceded by months of glowing coverage.

  18. Bob Burns says:

    Renaissance and baroque art was almost entirely about promoting the interests of wealthy families. It’s chock full of self-serving ideology and product placement. Just sayin’, yeah, raise hell, but self-interested cultural patronage has always been the preponderant norm.

    For example, why do we have business sections, but no labor sections in our newspapers? We didn’t even when labor was 30% of our workforce.

  19. Carraldo says:

    I think that movies and the public have been ill-served by the Twitter-gang mentality of large numbers of web-based critics and bloggers. It’s kind of amazing to see all these tweets like “Going to the _____ screening. Lord have mercy” or “Sooooo excited. On the way to GOTG all media!” Then sitting in that very screening, reinforcing the group consensus.Tweeting snide jokes or squees to each other right after the screening. These are supposed to be professionals. Not professional behavior.

    To David’s point: it has increasingly been decided beforehand, based on marketing to “journalists” in all its forms, and based on preordained ideas of what films and filmmakers are cool or uncool. Two films of basically the quality, I am convinced, can end up a 35 and 70 on the tomato meter. The difference there is how it is framed by the generosity or lack thereof toward the entities involved.

  20. Martin says:

    reinforcing the group consensus

    FTW.

    David’s been beating this drum for years, but the final rollover came very fast. Immovable object of slavish gen pop, irresistible force of coercive marketing. Everything between gets smashed.

    I feel for ya, Poland. Must be a cold shower to realize you’re the last of a dying form.

  21. Dr Wally Rises says:

    Nice to see a meaty article from Dave, always welcome and too infrequent these days. One umbrage I take however is that Dave keeps banging the ‘DVD is over’ drum constantly. It isn’t. I haven’t bought a new movie on DVD in years but it remains a viable and convenient entertainment delivery system and will do for years to come, for pensioners, soccer moms and college dorms if nothing else. As of 2014, the format retains an overall majority in packaged media sales, and it’s worth noting that even this year Frozen has become one of the five biggest DVD sellers in history. Not bad for a supposedly antique format that nobody has any use for now.

  22. SamLowry says:

    And yet you had artists like Michelangelo who still made fun of his patrons in his art. Aside from a few masterpieces from those old masters, how many still check out Renaissance and Baroque art anymore?

    Same thing will happen to today’s tentpoles–gone in a matter of years, let alone decades or even centuries. No one will look back fondly at TRANSFORMERS.

  23. Joe Leydon says:

    No one will look back fondly at TRANSFORMERS.

    SamLowry: I wouldn’t be too sure about that. I am bit older than most of the people who post here — well, OK, maybe a LOT older — and I’m often amused by how people 20-30 years younger than me continue to hold dear the movies they enjoyed during their youth. For example: I remain immune to the charms of most movies made by John Hughes. But I learned long ago not to mention that in front of younger friends who absolutely cherish them.

  24. LexG says:

    On that John Hughes tip, something like BLUES BROTHERS or FLETCH or ANIMAL HOUSE is like some IMMORTAL CLASSIC to ESPN dudes or Gen X’ers like me who came up watching them 200 times a week on Cinemax; I’m sure to someone in their 60s who was 30 when they dropped, they were a so-so one-and-done.

    That used to beguile me, but now I see it happening with people 10, 20 years younger than me — Something like Old School or Elf or Wedding Crashers might be to them what Animal House or Porky’s was to “us,” and now I’m the old dude who saw Anchorman once at age 31 and instantly put it out of mind never to go back, kind of mystified that a 10-year-old movie has this “legendary” status. Just part of getting old.

  25. Joe Leydon says:

    Absolutely, LexG. Although I must admit: I, too, have fond memories of The Blues Brothers and Fletch, and even included Animal House in my book about must-see movies. But.. well, The Goonies? Predator? Sixteen Candles? Sorry: No comprende.

  26. Joe Leydon says:

    And don’t get me started on all those “classic” slasher movies from the ’70s and ’80s that have spawned remakes in recent years.

  27. palmtree says:

    Yes, the “test of time” does elevate things that were mocked or unappreciated at the time.

    BUT having said that, it also devalues many things that were extremely popular at the time but ultimately had little substance.

    I believe Transformers falls into the latter category.

  28. Joe Leydon says:

    Palmtree: That’s true, too. Makes me think of all the blank stares I get from my students when I mention such hits from yesteryear as Love Story, Airport and The Towering Inferno. On the other hand: The Transformer movies will always have the toys and the cartoons to keep the movies seeming reasonably fresh and relevant, don’t you think?

  29. leahnz says:

    well i take major umbrage to including ‘predator’ – part of the mcT holy trinity of predator/DH/Red October – in that list Joe, fisticuffs at dawn (oh wait, i probably just proved your point. still, this aggression shall not stand)

    i’m not sure who to work up a froth against after reading this, just everybody, the idiocracy? it feels like a dissertation but i missed the first paragraph containing the subject. i have vague righteous indignation

    the solution is, as always, lower production costs. doesn’t even matter what the problem is. less risk = less fear = better art. fear is the mindkiller

  30. palmtree says:

    Airport was EXACTLY what I was thinking of when I wrote that. Great minds, Joe.

    Yes, toys and cartoons were where Transformers began and where it shall probably remain the most fondly remembered methinks.

  31. brack says:

    Finally something leahnz and I agree about. Predator is a classic action movie. I can watch that movie every day of my life and never get sick of it.

  32. SamLowry says:

    They key problem with TRANSFORMERS is that it’s a Big Boom movie, and nothing ages faster than special effects.

    Note how Lucas had to amp up the Death Star explosion because a Big Boom good enough for ’77 wouldn’t cut it in ’97?

  33. Triple Option says:

    Pulled this off of Wiki but it’s a list of the Dow Jones 30 components when David was born. Happy BDay! Thanks, btw, for the website. Companies have been switched on & off for 130 years, yet at any given moment, if you were to ask someone to slash off 5-6-7 of the companies they know and then ask to imagine life in America w/out them, would not most people only be able to conceive of dystopian post apocalyptic mess?

    Allied Chemical
    Aluminum Company of America
    American Can
    American Telephone and Telegraph Company
    American Tobacco B
    Anaconda Copper
    Bethlehem Steel
    Chrysler
    E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company
    Eastman Kodak Company
    General Electric Company
    General Foods
    General Motors Corporation
    Goodyear
    International Harvester
    International Nickel
    International Paper Company
    Johns-Manville
    Owens-Illinois Glass
    Procter & Gamble Company
    Sears Roebuck & Company
    Standard Oil of California
    Standard Oil (NJ)
    Swift & Company *
    Texaco Incorporated (formerly Texas Company)
    Union Carbide
    United Aircraft
    U.S. Steel
    Westinghouse Electric
    Woolworth

  34. SamLowry says:

    Doesn’t appear to be a skip code…still trying to figure out what this has to do with the price of salt.

    An argument in favor of too big to fail? An allegory about Murdoch trying to buy Time Warner?

  35. Joe Leydon says:

    Well, we seem to have gotten along without Woolworth.

  36. JS Partisan says:

    Happy birthday, but it’s not a mediocrity of a movie. Whatever goes on with you and Marvel movies, it seems to get worse as you age. You also, seem to be heading into that fun part of aging, where your touch on what’s happening now, is largely overshadowed by what happen to you then.

  37. PcChongor says:

    ^ Either that, or the latest generation of Marvel movies really have been pretty mediocre.

  38. palmtree says:

    ^ Or, the bar for excellence is high, possibly unreasonably high. GotG is the summer movie I needed.

  39. PcChongor says:

    ^ Or, the bar for critical evaluation is low, possibly unreasonably low. GotG is the summer movie Disney said I needed.

  40. brack says:

    Just remember he liked ASM2.

  41. Hcat says:

    As a kid my father was always excited at the chance to watch fantastic voyage or journey to the center of the earth with me, and I will eventually subject my kids to Dragonslayer. In a quarter century someone else will be sitting their kids down to experience Transformers confirming one of the few constants of the universe; Parents have the worst taste in everything.

    And that list of companies brought another thought to my mind. If they ever get that blade runner sequel up and running, do you think they are going to have a hard time rounding up companies willing to do product placement?

  42. Gustavo says:

    Is that Bitplayer idiot who complained about Merchant/Ivory films even aware that Merchant has been dead for some time and Ivory hasn’t made a film since 2009?

    If I had to bet, the schmuck hasn’t seen ANY of their films.

  43. cadavra says:

    Hate to put the pedant cap on again, but color existed all through the silent era (first Technicolor film was 1917, first feature THE TOLL OF THE SEA, 1922; most famous THE BLACK PIRATE, 1926) and into the early sound era. Three-strip Technicolor came along in 1932 (Disney cartoon FLOWERS AND TREES; first feature BECKY SHARP, 1935), which is probably what you’re thinking of.

  44. leahnz says:

    hey now, years ago some of us sat our 10 yr old down to watch ’2001 a space odyssey’ and got the smart aleck-y “is it over yet?” retort and how-much-longer-must-i-humour-you hour-long glare-and-stare for our trouble (having said that i was vacuuming the other day and when i switched it off heard ‘the blue danube’ blaring upstairs – he was watching the 2001 bluray in his room while doing some art assignment, he’s crazy about the movie now and just watches it on his own and likes to discuss and theorize about it, so maybe starting young to mess up our kids in our own special way can pay off in a good way sometimes)

    ETA cadavra you’re even wearing your pedant cap in your little avatar pic haha (nothing pedantic about film history though, keep it real man)

  45. berg says:

    ditto on the color … all of the golden and silver era of (silent) film (1895 – 1914) could have gone color or black and white, it was all about the development of the film stock and the existing filmmakers and studios went with b/w

  46. Pete B. says:

    Doing an awful LexG impersonation…

    Fantastic Voyage. Raquel Welch. BOW.

    (I still love the attack of the white blood cells.)

  47. Hcat says:

    Voyage had cutting edge special effects at the time but Welch is the first thing people always mention. Just as for all the effects in amazing Spider-Man, the only visual I still remember is how good Stone looks in a pair of boots.

  48. Pete B. says:

    Hey Dave,

    Are we going to see a review of Guardians other than your single sentence of it being a “mediocrity”?

    Just curious as to why you view it that way.

  49. doug r says:

    I don’t get the hate for Guardians either. Is it the raccoon that talks? You ever see a raccoon up close and realize how close they are to what we were just a couple of million years ago?
    http://www.cbc.ca/player/Shows/Shows/The+Nature+of+Things/2010-11/ID/1815680672/

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