Blog 2023

Walking Around Inside Your Writing

               There’s a lot I enjoy about writing.  I enjoy the characters I write (usually).  I like the adventures they go on and the things they do.  But I often enjoy the worlds.  Whether it’s some far-off alien planet, some magical time far removed from the modern day, or just a neighborhood with a really great bakery, the worlds are often delightful.

               People write for a lot of reasons.  There’s self-exploration and conceptual exploration.  There’s social commentary and sheer entertainment.  But sometimes, you write just because you want to go to a place.  They say ‘write what you know’ and, well, sometimes, what you know is that 1950s-style diners can be fun places to hang out.

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Blog 2020

Product and Process

As a member of the Transformers fandom, there’s an ongoing debate in the community.  And it is by no means isolated to this community, but it is the debate of inherent quality versus nostalgic quality.  That is, is a given work of art (show, comic, toy, etc) good on its own merits or good merely as an artifact of nostalgia.

If we compare the original 1984 cartoon (‘Generation One’) to most of the modern shows, G1 pales in comparison.  If we compare animation quality, the modern shows are vastly superior excepting a few episodes (and usually then, just specific sequences).  Narrative, plot, and character elements are invariably subpar in the older works.  Acting can go either way, depending on the show, the episode, the character, etc.  This leads people to say things like ‘Gen-1 isn’t that good except for the nostalgia’.

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Blog 2020

Dollars and Sense

“You’re worth more than what you can give to other people”
– Mara, She-Ra and the Princesses of Power

That line’s gotten lost in a lot of the hoopla surrounding She-Ra, and not without reason.  A singular line, no matter how good, can get lost in a powerful scene, in a powerful episode, of one of the best well-written and beloved TV series in the last year.  I stand by my previous assertion that She-Ra and the Princesses of Power will go down as one of the best cartoons ever, full-stop.  I have little doubt it will be remembered along with Avatar the Last Airbender, Batman the Animated Series, GI Joe: Real American Hero, Super Friends, and Speed Racer.

But this little kernel of brilliance really deserves some evaluation on its own, independent of the scene that showcased it.  I’ve been fixated on it since it was utter because I feel like there’s something strangely prescient here, relevant to today’s world. Continue reading