Category Archives: Idealist

Cutthroat Diversity

Game of Thrones

Thrones is back and thank the gods.  Ok.  That was a bluff.  I went all-in, and I folded.  Wasn’t my best poker play.  Throne’s presence at San Diego Comic-Con kicked off with a tribute to the many casualties of the beloved series:

Author George R.R. Martin is still writing The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring, the 6th and 7th installments of A Song of Ice and Fire, respectively.  The Winds of Winter is set for release December of this year, while Thrones Season 4 started location shooting last week in Nesjavellir, Iceland.  Several thespians have been cast for the season already including Pedro Pascal as Oberyn MartellIndira Varma as Ellaria Sand, and Mark Gatiss in an unspecified role.

Major potential  Season 4 characters that have NOT been cast yet include: Mace Tyrell; Lord of Highgarden, Styr; the Magnar of Thenn, Aeron “Damphair” Greyjoy; The Iron Captain, Victarion Greyjoy; Captain of the Iron fleet, Ser Arys OakheartThe Soiled Knight, Areo Hotah; The Captain of Guards, and finally Arianne Martell; daughter of Prince Doran.  Stay tuned for casting/shooting updates as they arrive.

UPDATE:

HBO parent company Time Warner has released their latest quarterly earnings report and within it are the latest viewer numbers for Game of Thrones. HBO is now reporting that Game of Thrones averaged 14.2 million viewers per episode last season. This is a 20% increase over season 2′s viewership number and is a significant jump from the last reported number of 13.6 million. (You can download the full report here.)

What does this mean? It means that even well into season 3 Thrones‘ viewership is still climbing. Which is pretty unprecedented for a drama like this. I suspect the Red Wedding may have had something to do with the late season jump as people got caught up on the show to see what all the fuss is about.

This also means that Game of Thrones is very, very close to becoming HBO’s most-watched show of all-time. The Sopranos is currently tops with an average of 14.4 million viewers per episode.Game of Thrones may very well break that next season.

ALSO:

British thespian Roger Ashton-Griffiths has been cast as Mace Tyrell; Lord of Highgarden.

Dutch actor Yorick Van Wageningen is rumored to have auditioned for Styr; the Magnar of Thenn.

Dean-Charles Chapman has reportedly been cast as King Tommen.

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Resolved Effervescence

Rational Effervesence 5

 

Tyrion Lannister a.k.a. Peter Dinklage is Bolivar Trask, founder and CEO of Trask-Industries: the company that would go on to enslave mutant-kind with massive robotic Sentinel’s. As seen by some at San Diego Comic-Con this past week. Bryan Singer’s upcoming X-men: Days of Future Past will not only feature Trask’s Sentinel’s, but time-travel and a dystopian alternative future in which mutants are being sent to internment camps.

http://www.trask-industries.com/

The coveted franchise will be trying to shake off X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and X-Men 3: The Last Stand: both films having been absolute garbage, garnering an average 47.5% rottentomatoes score. While X-men: First Class did some damage-control, Singer will probably be looking to make some headway on the many fans of the franchise. As a matter of fact, with Sentinel’s running around, Singer could totally swing some Magneto/JFK”magic-bullet” action into the mix. Let’s just hope, assume and pray that the guy isn’t going to pull some sort of Zack Snyder. Because that would be bad. Like really bad. Speaking of the man-himself, Snyder will direct a Man of Steel sequel, featuring none other than a rebooted Caped Crusader. Does lowly gruntish simpleton Zack Snyder have sufficient enough intellectual-capacity and talent to do justice to the Justice League? NO. No he absolutely does not. Any other questions?

Rational Effervesence 6

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We Proceed..

lessons_of_history“Since man is a moment in astronomic time, a transient guest of the earth, a spore of his species, a scion of his race, a composite of body, character, and mind, a member of a family and a community, a believer or doubter of a faith, a unit in an economy, perhaps a citizen in a state or a soldier in an army, we may ask under the corresponding heads–astronomy, geology, geography, biology, ethnology, psychology, morality, religion, economics, politics, and war – what history has to say about the nature, conduct, and prospects of man. It is a precarious enterprise, and only a fool would try to compress a hundred centuries into a hundred pages of hazardous conclusions. We proceed.” – Will and Ariel Durant

Those who fail to learn from history will repeat it.

History does not repeat itself, but it rhymes.
Mark Twain

“As his studies come to a close the historian faces the challenge: Of what use have your studies been? Have you found in your work only the amusement of recounting the rise and fall of nations and ideas, and retelling “sad stories of the death of kings”? Have you learned more about human nature than the man in the street can learn without so much as opening a book? Have you derived from history any illumination of our present condition, any guidance for our judgments and policies, any guard against the rebuffs of surprise or the vicissitudes of change? Have you found such regularities in the sequence of past events that you can predict the future actions of mankind or the fate of states? Is it possible that, after all, “history has no sense,” that it teaches us nothing, and that the immense past was only the weary rehearsal of the mistakes that the future is destined to make on a larger stage and scale?” – Will and Ariel Durant

Continue reading We Proceed..

Contemptible Posterity

Despicable-Me-2-1

The summer is upon us my dear friends and with it comes San Diego Comic-Con, and Despicable Me 2:

The first one got an 81% on rottentomatoes.  Which is better than any film Zack Snyder has ever made.  Ever.

Ant-Man

Marvel’s promise to “keep taking risks” ended them up with an Ant-Man film.  How pumped were YOU when you saw “Ant-Man“?  You weren’t.  Disney recently announced that Marvel Studios’ Phase Three will kick off in the summer of 2016: releasing films on — July 8 2016, May 6 2016, and May 5 2017.  Ant-Man and Doctor Strange will be two of those films, and have yet to cast lead roles. Having recently reacquired intellectual property Blade, Daredevil, The Punisher, and Ghostrider: Marvel has requested a meeting with Vin Diesel.  Opening the door for a whole lot of nerd speculation.

 

Marvel Phase Three

Quote1.pngThere comes a time in contracts where, if a studio is done making the movies, [the characters] come home,” he explained. “That doesn’t mean we’re going to make another movie. But it means they’re back in the fold, which is where we want them to be.Quote2.png  — Kevin Feige

Doctor Strange

Continue reading Contemptible Posterity

Hold On..

“It’s that mind-heart connection that I believe compels us to not just be attentive to all the bright and dazzling things but also the dark and difficult things.”

The US has the highest incarceration rate in the world. In 1972, the US prison population was 300,000 people. Today it’s 2.3 million.

This includes 3,000 kids serving life sentences.

I started representing children on death row 20 years ago, and I was struck by how desperately they wanted and needed mentoring, parenting, guidance.

They were in every sense of the word “kids,” and that surprised me initially. . . . What I saw was that not only were they vulnerable and disabled and exposed in ways that adult clients weren’t, but they were also responsive in ways that adult clients weren’t. . . . The second thing was just seeing how exposed kids are in the adult system, how victimised, how brutalised. The biggest problem we have is the profound absence of hopeThe opportunities that were given to me I want to give to other people who are disadvantaged and disfavored and marginalised. And in my generation, I think the place where those needs are most compelling and most dramatic is in the criminal justice system. One out of three young black men is in jail or in prison. I go into communities where half of the young men of color are under criminal justice control, where you see states like Alabama that have permanently disenfranchised over a third of the black male population. I see real threats to the kinds of freedom and opportunities that I experienced as a result of the work that was done before me, and I feel a need to respond to that.”

Continue reading Hold On..

I, too, was once a Human Being, Revisited

No ashes, no coal can burn with such glow.
As a secretive love of which no one must know.

She was.

But, “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us…” [Charles Dickens, Tale of Two Cities]

She began her dark journey into light at the age of seventeen.

In that darkness, he had beaten her ‘on her bare buttocks’ in a ‘special room’ away from the family. In the light, she eventually confessed that she had felt sexual excitement when her father beat her. Her mother had raised her ‘in complete sexual ignorance.’

Suffering – both physical and emotional – with love.

Continue reading I, too, was once a Human Being, Revisited

Extraordinary Grace

Extraordinary Grace

Academy Award #bestactor Jamie Foxx is looking pretty OG triple as deranged electomancer Max Dillon a.k.a. Electro.  Though not an in-house Marvel Production, Sony Pictures has seen wild success with @therealstanlee’s coveted Web-Slinger franchise.  Save perhaps when they cast Eric Forman as afflicted bruiser Eddie Brock a.k.a. Venom.  Which was a sub-optimal move, one might say.  Kind of  like the cinematic blunder known as Sucker Punch directed by who other than rampant herpaderp nub-scrub Zack Snyder.  #LOLUMADBRO?!?!

Quote1.png“It’s a couple hours of make-up, but it’s really so much fun,” Jamie Foxx on being Electro,“It’s part of a remarkable legacy: Spider-Man.  I mean, when you’re growing up as a kid, that’s everything. So to be able to be in that is just amazing–the producers wanted something for the future.  They wanted to have it more grounded and not as “comic-bookie”, so it won’t be green and yellow.  They wanted to try new things in the script.  This villain (@Electro) is for  the first time written really, really well,” he continued. “[Star] Andrew Garfield and [director] Marc Webb both commented on how great the script is, so it should be an exciting time.   “I’m just waiting to get to Comic-Con and see how people respond to it.Quote2.png — Jamie Foxx

Extraordinary Grace 3

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Transcendental Gloom

Intergalactic Synergy 4

J.J. Abrams is looking like a pretty solid candidate to bring Star Wars back into legitimacy, as his warm-up for Star Wars Episode VII is rocks an 87% on rottentomatoes:

A brand new Star Wars trilogy is not all Disney has in mind, as a matter of fact the mass-media corporation says that at least one spin-off film is also “in the works”:

Quote1.pngWe are in fact working on a few stand-alone films,” says Disney CEO Bob Iger. (Lawrence) Kasdan and Simon Kinberg are both working on films derived from great Star Wars characters that are not part of the overall saga.  So we plan to make Star Wars VII, VIII and IX over roughly a six-year period of time starting in 2015. But there are going to be a few other films released in that period of time too.Quote2.png

Ya go ahead and sign me up for all of that.  Thanks.

Naturally speculation about potential “standalone films” has run amuck: everyone from Boba Fett to Yoda to a young Han Solo to a Seven Samurai Jedi Knight Ensemble Film are rumored as possibilities.  The last one sounding pretty boss.  Oh wait.  Nevermind.  It was Zack Snyder’s idea.  And let’s be honest with ourselves.  That guy is a baddie.

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The Binding Counselor

“He was frail and drained of energy;
his eyes were dull, his face contorted with pain

— and I was, frankly, worried about his health.
Was this drawn and ailing man slumped in a wheelchair the legendary healer I had read about?
Had I come west on a wild goose chase? ” [The Voice (Kindle Locations 70-71)]

Yes, he was the legendary psychotherapist.  Wild goose chase? — maybe, actually in retrospect, no ambiguity here.

“Dr. Erickson asked to be excused, and then, about an hour later, I was astonished to see him wheel himself back into his study, fully alert and revitalized, cheerful, eyes twinkling, ready to get to work.”  [The Voice (Kindle Locations 72-73)]

erickson_ambiguity

A Paradox.

“Dr. Erickson encouraged me to continue my studies and develop my own ideas and techniques, both for my own therapy and for my patients. This respect for my ability to find my own best solutions was fundamental to Dr. Erickson’s philosophy of healing, and was one of the most important lessons he taught me in our time together. In this and in so many ways, his tutelage and sensitivity were nothing less than inspiring.”  — Brian Alman [The Voice (Kindle Locations 82-85).]

A Counselor.

Continue reading The Binding Counselor