Thursday, September 03, 2009

Thursday Kibbles and Bits: bastardized Bronte, SyFy, chupacabras and an LOLcat moratorium

+ Dear Pop Culture World, please stop punching me in the gut for maybe 10 seconds or so. I lose my mind when I see stuff like this:

Yes, that's right -- it's a newly designed cover for Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, made to look like the cover of a Twilight novel! With a badge that reads, "Bella and Edward's favorite book." I'll just let that sink in for a moment or two. *whistles* Yes! Exactly! It's a crime against literature, one that nearly resulted in my head shooting off my body when I saw it on Topless Robot this morning. HarperCollins, you sadden me...except for those few seconds when I gleefully imagined the disappointment felt by people who will read this book all the way through only to find there are exactly zero vampires living out there on the moors. Haha, suckers!

+ In other risible news, the SyFy Channel is apparently contemplating adding a cooking show and yes, a talk show, to their lineup. Personally, I'm hoping their foray into reality television produces a "Survivor"-like effort featuring the stars of their worst Saturday night movies fighting costumed Yetis and Chupacabras. Fingers crossed...

+ Speaking of the always popular "goat sucker," some yoo-hoo's shared yet more video of an oversized, big-toothed, ugly dog claiming it's a chupacabra. "The X-Files" totally ruined this urban legend for me -- the real thing will never be as cool as the one they stitched together.

+ In less disturbing news, Cinema Blend has a nifty fall movie preview. I'm really looking forward to Soderbergh's "The Informant!" (because it's a Matt Damon movie with an exclamation point in the title), "Where the Wild Things Are" (because the trailers look amazing), "Amelia" (because, let's face it, she was pretty cool and also there's Christopher Eccleston), "The Men Who Stare at Goats" (Clooney as faux Jedi!), "2012" (aircraft carrier runs over White House - who thinks this stuff up?), "Sherlock Holmes" (shirtless Robert Downey Jr.) and "Alvin and the Chipmunks 2: The Squakquel" (just kidding...sort of...I really like animated rodents. It's a thing.). What movies are you looking forward to the most?

+ And finally, I found out about this earlier and wanted to warn you ahead of time: September 9 has been declared "A Day Without Cats" by Urlesque.com. More specifically, a day without pictures and videos of cats being cute. I'll let their video explain it:



Sadly, I have seen every one of those images before and knew exactly where the cats should be. Sigh. I really need a job. Anyway, to mitigate the pain of a day without cats, Urlesque is offering to blog on a different animal of their readers' choice. I voted for the rodents, but I'm thinking the goats might be good too. Cast your ballot today!

27 comments:

-ic0re said...

That's awesome about SyFy cooking show! Have you seen the new Brian Boitono cooking show, featuring What Would Brian Boitono Do as the theme song? Last week his whole show revolved around bacon.

So...maybe a Starbuck cooking show? Or learn to make alcohol with old engine parts?

Liz said...

Ooh, I like that idea. I wouldn't mind seeing an Admiral Adama cooking show -- of course, he wouldn't get past the cooking sherry but it would be fun!

jane said...

"I gleefully imagined the disappointment felt by people who will read this book all the way through only to find there are exactly zero vampires living out there on the moors. Haha, suckers!"

Nice one! Love it!

Logical Libby said...

I don't know if I am upset that Harper Collins is whoring out Bronte, or if I am overjoyed teens might actually read something that doesn't have horribly written vampire sex in it...

onepinkshoe said...

I'd love it if the girls who think Twilight is good literature read Wuthering Heights and their brains melted out their ears. I can't imagine people who are well read can still find Twilight worth their time. Perhaps I expect too much of humanity?

Have you seen the Twilight themed SAT prep book? God help us all.

Michele said...

What other animal is as cute, versatile and downright funny as a cat?

Hey if the Twilight-esque cover on WH leads teens to actually read something other than bloody Twilight, I say go for it, HarperCollins!

Cassandra said...

Noooooo, they can't do that to Bronte! Gahhhhh..... D:

RedCochina said...

I read The Lovely Bones earlier this year and instantly fell in love with it. When I found out Peter Jackson was directing the film adaption to be released this December, I was overjoyed...and then immediately crushed to find that Mark Wahlberg will be playing the father. Mark. Wahlberg. I'm still looking forward to it but with a healthy amount of skepticism.

Sara Jo said...

Day without cats?! I'm thinking that the fact that there isn't really a clear winner so far in the poll means that no other animals are suited for such LOLs as cats are.

Which one was the slide? I can recognize almost all the others.

Spencer said...

And speaking of healthy amounts of skepticism, and also since I'm a glass is half empty... with a crack in it, kind of person, I'd say prepare to say goodbye to sci-fi on SyFy. Once a network decides to re-brand its image (name change etc.) and starts down the greasy path of reality, it usually moves away from what it used to be known for, even if the name is still still some bastardization of the concept.

Anyone remember MUSICtv (MTV), American MOVIE Classics (AMC), The NASHVILLE Network (TNN), ARTS & Entertainment (A&E), The LEARNING Channel (TLC) etc. etc.???

Name's the same, shame about the content.

On a happier note - my "mystery" word to enter to post here is Shalingl -- which is cool!

Adam said...

Well, Stephanie Meyer co-opted the plot of Romeo and Juliet in New Moon and Wuthering Heights in Eclipse, so don't be surprised to see Shakespeare go the same way.

One would think Meyer could have "borrowed" the story of Withering Heights with a little more delicacy. But no, she quotes the book outright.

Meyer 1, Subtlety O.

Adam said...

Ugh, "Withering" in my previous comment is most likely a Freudian slip considering that's what I think Meyer has done to Bronte.

Cara King said...

Ooh, that Wuthering Heights cover is funny! Though I suppose my reaction is not as strong as some here because (1) I rather liked the Twilight books (particularly book #4), and (2) if I recall correctly, either Bella or Edward (or both?) had some negative stuff to say about Emily Bronte's masterwork...which is one reason why that cover strikes me as funny...

In any case, I should think few who loved Twilight would much care for Wuthering Heights. (Jane Eyre or Pride and Prejudice, on the other hand...)

As to what movies we're all looking forward to: I can't wait to see 9 and Sherlock Holmes!

Tracy said...

The Guardian had a story about the Bronte cover earlier in the week which mentioned that a least some Twilight fans who bought Wuthering Heights felt a little cheated ...

Red Cochina, I too was a bit surprised by the casting of Wahlberg in Lovely Bones. But I wasn't too keen on the original choice for the role either -- Ryan Gosling. He was only like 25 when they cast him as the father of a teenager!

TLH said...

Oh man that book cover just made me rage hardcore. I like Twilight as much as the next girl, but that's just crossing a line.

Bella's not even smart enough to understand Wuthering Heights. I mean... c'mon. *rage*

lilacsigil said...

People who love Twilight should love Wuthering Heights - the main characters are self-absorbed, sadistic, romantically obsessed bastards with nothing good in their worlds apart from clinging to each other. It's an ideal transition from bad writing about bad people to good writing about bad people.

sayssara said...

I'm voting to bring back the cats!

Anonymous said...

The idea of Heathcliff with fangs is somewhat hilarious.

Crone

RedCochina said...

Tracy, I love Ryan Gosling but you're right. As a father of teenagers...not so believable. I don't have anything against Mark Wahlberg per se, he just falls into the Keanu Reeves category of actor for me. Moderately good looking with a limited range, great for action movies. I liked him in Shooter. But pulling off the heavy drama required for Bones? Eh.

I'm not writing him off completely. More hoping I'll be pleasantly surprised. And that I won't hear "Hi donkey! Say hi to your mom!" every time he is on screen.

Tracy said...

Red Cochina wrote:

Tracy, I love Ryan Gosling but you're right. As a father of teenagers...not so believable.

Yeah ... that was my concern not his talent as an actor. When I first heard that casting news, I was afraid that it was a question of plugging in the "actor of the moment" or something equally silly.

Perhaps we will be pleasantly surprised with Wahlberg.

SFG said...

SyFy is apparently gunning harder to attract women.

It's always amusing (to me) how attempts to make things female-friendly end up annoying female nerds...

future mantra said...

Nice post. It is always good to see people doing new and innovative things. I would like to suggest you a similarly innovative magazine - PEOPLE MATTERS started by an Indian School of Business (ISB)Hyderabad Alumni, which was suggested to me by a friend.

It deals with various important aspects of management, especially those related to Leadership & People Management, which the mainstream business publications often ignore.

It's also relatively cheap. I guess its annual subscription is about Rs. 400 which is even less than the cost of a standard Pizza.

Their last issue had a really educative article by Robert Kaplan (the father of Balanced Scorecard method) where he talks about how organisations can create opportunities out of current economic downturn.

I got its subscription online through their website: http://www.peoplematters.in

If you like the magazine, kindly refer it to others like I am doing.

Thanks

Michele said...

Ugh! Is it me, or does that comment taste of spam?

agent57 said...

Hmmn, it's been a long time since I've had spam, but yeah... I think that's the taste in my mouth right now.

Liz said...

No cats? But...but why?

Anonymous said...

I can only just imagine legions of Twilight fangurlz trying to read two pages of Wuthering Heights and just going "huh?" OTOH, maybe it will lead them to the Kate Bush song, LOL. : ) [And I say this as someone who actually enjoyed the Twilight series as trashy, cheesy fun, but doesn't take it too seriously].

A better "transition" book from Twilight to "real" fiction/ literature might be Du Maurier's "Rebecca"--you get the excellent writing quality and some superficial similarities (shy young woman in crazy love with a mysterious older guy and trying to cope in a world where she feels completley overwhelmed/ out of place), but the language is more modern and the narrative more accessible than WH. IMO, of course. Though the "implied-but-not-directly-stated" ending still might cause some heads to explode.

I really hope the new Sherlock Holmes movie is good. The combination of RDJ as Holmes and Jude Law as Watson is worth the price of admission, but I refuse to plunk down my cash unless the movie as a whole is good. I'm strange like that. ; )

stacy said...

I won't lie, I saw this republishing Bronte nonsense and suddenly I had an apostrophe. Er, an epiphany. Twilight is to Wuthering Heights as Baz Lurman was to Shakespere. It's the hip version. I like Twilight, despite the things I don't like about it, and defending that is not my point. My point is, Wuthering Heights was so damned depressing I actually didn't finish it. My thought was something along the lines of "if I wanted to slit my wrists, I'd go and look up genocide stats in Africa", not sit down all cozy with something that, in theory, I adore - a book. And like Heathcliffe and Caroline (what that even her name?), Bella and Edward are only happy when they're making each other miserable. If you want someone to make a smart decision based on their future happiness, you don't ask Bella Swan, because she'll choose the guy who knew better than she did about what she wants and doesn't want to see her or talk to her, but will kill himself if he finds out she's not around anymore for him to NOT see and NOT talk to etc. From what I remember, they're practically the same people. Of course, I am purposely remembering as little as possible, so I could be getting it wrong. Or maybe I'm still bitter that Meyer pulled a "well you're okay, but when my boyfriend gets back, I'm dumping you" on pretty much the most well-developed character she had. And then, instead of leaving him alone to nurse his broken heart, she had him fall for his best girl's...baby girl. Ugh. Insult to injury much?

Ok. I'm done. Horrified, but done all the same. Harper should be ashamed...but if they are, the dissenters have been bound and gagged in the basement until the first printing runs out.