Friday, July 16, 2010

"They got us by the dreams". A dominant culture and movie review by Malik Diamond titled "The Gladiator Kid"

 [this graphic is by Malik Diamond]

What follows is a cross-post from my pal. This makes me happy. Men who "get it" make me happy. I've never been a bitter person. Because I've known enough really wonderful people to help me keep the faith in humanity. I've never been a misanthrope. I've always loved people: way more women than men, among those two populations. But there are a few men, and Malik is one of them.

The Gladiator Kid

Sometimes a Neo Ascetic like myself has to take a break from all that monkishness and dive into the festering pool of pop culture. I do it rarely and with great caution. Is it to keep a finger on the pulse? Or perhaps to give the old plugs a quick charge, indulging in the remnants of my MegaMediaMind?

Metaphors and metaphysics are the language of machines that can’t be seen. The Powers That Be we can call them, or whatever, you get what I mean. Symbolic resonance mind control. They got us by the dreams!

So what dreams are they giving? Let’s take a peak at a recent one from the Hollywood Hole: The Karate Kid. Starring Jayden Smith, boy of mediocre acting talent, arrogant offspring of white media’s favorite safe-yet-macho black boy, Will Smith. Featuring Jackie Chan, king of comedic masochism, abuser of women and stuntmen. Including various bullies, caricatures, racial program invader codes, and an 11-year-old Chinese trophy stripper girl (more on this in a bit).

Boy asks Girl to do something.
Girl says “no,” and turns around.

Boy grabs Girl by the arm, spins her around, and attempts to drag her to do what he demands.

If you saw the movie, did you catch this? Is there a shine of fire in your golden eyes? Perhaps you were lost in the tee-hees, the giggles, you can almost hear the polo-shirted executives chuckling to themselves about one of the few scenes in the script they bothered to read, almost see the cowardly and un-credited re-writers laugh and nod their heads obediently.

“This is hilarious! She’s bigger than him and he can’t move her!” Har, har.

Well, here’s another scene, and this one is from the Temple of DZA, which means it happened in front of my eyes:

Man and Woman argue hot, with subdued voices.
Woman spins around and walks away.
Man seizes Woman by the arm and spins her around to face him.

In this scene, there wasn’t any fucking giggling. Only the spine-tingling crackle of Violence.

Quick question: How does a system of oppression normalize oppression?
Spoon feeder: By putting a smile on the victim’s face.

Moving on to the subtleties. Those of you with knowledge may have caught the above scene. If you have knowledge and an interest in the technical aspects of filmmaking, you may have caught another Jewel:

Boy trains in kung fu.

Boy looks at Girl (the same one he grabbed earlier, if you recall).

Girl turns away.
Boy beats on a pad as hard as he can.

Just like that, we go from Training to Rejection to Violence. DID YOU NOTICE?

The truth is between the lines, the values and vibrations are behind the words, at the bottom of the well. What are they telling US about US?

What do the human women do in this movie? Well, there’s Mom, another real human black woman put into a fictionsuit of a powerless, shrill irritant life support to the Hero of the film. There’s also Girl, who is:
  • Safely powerless—why doesn’t she have any kung fu?
  • Safely feminine—plenty of shy smiles, plenty of giggles, mouth covered with the hand of course
  • Safely available to celebrate the Boy in his victory
  • Safely… a stripper-dancer?
Pole dancing on Oprah! Miley Cyrus writhing on stage! Jenna Jameson on the O’Reiley Factor! Porno goes mainstream! Rape culture live on primetime!

See, I understand that the matrix would have me believe that it’s a Good Thing for women to be transmuted by media magic into sex toys for men. I grasp that I’m supposed to think this represents freedom for women, just as I know that the sexual abuse, humiliation, and violence done to women in film is supposed to be free speech, protected by government documents.

I hear all the names, the slang, pieces of ass and bitches and what have you, and I know the pass codes that grant access permission to your mind: it’s just a joke, what’s the big deal, some women are that way, some women deserve it. I know cult-speak when I hear it.

Here’s the scene:
Boy shows off dance moves on videogame while Girl watches, delighted.
Boy requests demonstration of dancing from Girl.

Girl gets onto videogame and does a Sexy Dance for the Boy.
Boy stares up at Girl in awe and reverence.

Now go back and read all the scenes again, this time adding a few more details: “Black Boy” and “Chinese Girl.

I ask once again, what are they saying to US about US?

Barely pubescent children get viciously beaten up. The movie delights in the slow-motion torture of flesh pounding against flesh, digital sound systems booming out the sound of the impact, faces twisted in pain.

The Man teaches the boy respect and discipline. Is this a Confucian Man, who has regarded women as property since time immemorial, who worships at the pyramid altar of domination and submission and calls it morality, who says oppression is virtue?

And the climax, a cheering circus spectacle of a tournament, in Chinese pay-per-view style, complete with digital fight cards— put your kids in the Gladiator pit so they can learn what life’s all about. We’re a long way from the hometown championship of Daniel-san. Do we all need a Mr. Miyagi? When do we get to grow up?

Patriarchy, I say thee nay.

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