Sunday, October 20, 2013

White'n'Nerdy - When Amy Farrah Fowler channels Pauline Kael

I used to be pretty good at playing 'Trivial Pursuit'.  Not that I really enjoyed winning the game, I've just been blessed -or cursed- with the ability to retain lots of useless information.

Which is why I enjoy Big Bang Theory and why I  really LOVE it when folks who usually write on much more serious stuff raise the curtain on the throwaway lines that probably go over the head of half of BBT's audience. Well, those who identify with Penny, anyway. Though I DO quarrel with the the perception that Penny is shallow and dumb.

Along with the evidence that, yes, geeks and nerds DO get laid.. (how the heck do you think they reproduce?) but that the show is written with many layers of Easter Eggs; references that only nerds of various stripes would know.

And THEN, even political commentators get involved in discussing the nerdy connections to other media, look at Jonah Goldberg at NRO..
Did Indy Matter?
In a recent episode of The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon introduces his girlfriend, Amy, to the Raiders of the Lost Ark, which she’d never seen before. She liked the movie, she explains, despite the big “story problem.” Sheldon is aghast at the suggestion there could be any story problems with the “love child” of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. “What story problem?” he demands to know. She explains that Indiana Jones is absolutely irrelevant to the story. If he’d never gotten involved, the Nazis would have still found the ark of the covenant, they would have still brought it to that island, and they would have still had their faces melted.
And, in the comments on THAT opinion piece, is a link by an obviously nerd commenter to
Pauline Kael at the New Yorker in 1981 deconstructing the Indy epics.  Making in an obtuse manner the same point as Amy does on BBT.

Wherein.. Kael provides her opinion that old cinema serials were clearer and better than Spielberg and Lucas homages to them. 
Ummm.. having seen many of them on TV as a kid.... No!  Most were lots dumber than the Star Wars and Raiders  product.

But back on topic, the whole argument on whether, without Indy, the Ark might have gotten back to Berlin and Adolf might have  gotten back to Berlin and Hitler might have had his face melted off begs the question common to overheated existentialist theory.

The facts being, as it's an instrument of God's will, the innocent somehow manage to evade the terrible effects, and the attempt to harness evil turns against those of evil intent.
Just as we've seen time and time again. And are seeing today in many issues.

But it's not Goldberg or Kael that make the point, it's some commenter in Goldberg's page.   Bringing to mind, Sheldon's Mom..  at once, portrayed as both a 'bible thumper' and the wisest head on practical living in the Big Bang series.  Despite only appearing in a few episodes.

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