No Healing From “The Scar”

Ryan C.'s Four Color Apocalypse

As I write this review, news has broken that “president” Donald Trump intends to declare a so-called “state of emergency” along the US-Mexico border in order to commandeer funds for his pipe-dream of a “wall” by executive fiat. A genuine “emergency” has been unfolding, with disastrous consequences, at the border for a long time, it’s true — but it’s nothing like Trump would have you believe.

Italian cartoonist Andrea Ferraris and his documentarian colleague/creative partner, Renato Chiocca, know all about this real “emergency,” though, because they’ve seen it firsthand — and they know it’s got precisely fuck-all to do with some supposedly free-flowing “supply line” of drugs and MS-13 gang members out to rape our daughters, burn down our homes, and butcher our pets. The actual emergency is a humanitarian one, an economic one, even a logistical and conceptual one, as increased militarization of what was once a fairly open…

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Dark Valentine: THE LOVES OF CARMEN (Columbia 1948)

cracked rear viewer

Love takes many strange forms, none more strange than the obsessive love Don Jose has for the Gypsy temptress Carmen in THE LOVES OF CARMEN, Columbia Pictures’ biggest hit of 1948. The film, based on Prosper Merimee’s 1845 novella and Georges Bizet’s famous opera, reunites GILDA stars Rita Hayworth and Glenn Ford with director Charles Vidor, and though it’s in glorious Technicolor and set in 1800’s Spain, it’s got a lot of film noir elements going for it: there’s the protagonist caught in a rapidly moving downward spiral, the amoral femme fatale, crime, murder, and a bleak, downbeat ending. Think I’m stretching a bit? Let’s take a look…

Young nobleman Don Jose arrives in Seville with a dragoon squadron, a corporal with political ambitions and a bright future ahead of him… until he meets Carmen, a gorgeous red-haired Gypsy who is an expert manipulator. Jose is enchanted by this free-spirited…

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The Lesson Of Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown

Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown may not be as acclaimed or well-known as It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown or A Charlie Brown Christmas but it’s one of my favorite of the Peanuts holiday specials.  It has a very important lesson to teach us all.

It’s all about faith.

Hardly anyone in Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown has a good Valentine’s Day.  None of them should have been surprised.  All of the Charlie Brown holiday specials are about how days like Halloween, Christmas, and Thanksgiving rarely live up to our expectations.  Why should Valentine’s Day be any different?

Charlie Brown shouldn’t have been surprised when he went home empty-handed.  Sure, he thought he’d get a lot of valentines.  He even brought a briefcase to school with him because he was expecting to get so many.  After Schroeder handed out all of the valentines, Charlie Brown even went to big red box and turned it upside down.  There was nothing for Charlie Brown.  There’s never anything for Charlie Brown.

And Linus shouldn’t have been surprised when his teacher left school before he could give her that big heart-shaped box of candy.  After spending all of those Halloweens in a sincere pumpkin patch and waiting for the Great Pumpkin, Linus should have been used to the disappointment.

And Lucy should know that she’ll never be able to compete with Scroeder’s love of msic, no matter how many times she destroys his piano or tells him that Beethoven was overrated.

In the world of Charlie Brown, only Snoopy gets what he wants but he’s a dog so he doesn’t want much.  All he has to worry about is keeping Woodstock happy, finishing his new book, and shooting down the Red Baron.

But they never give up.  None of them.  No matter how wishy-washy or crabby they may be, all of them keep the faith.  None of them surrender their hope.  That’s the lesson of every Peanuts holiday special but it’s especially the lesson of Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown.  Someday, the teacher will accept Linus’s gift.  Someday, Schroeder will learn to appreciate Lucy’s finer qualities.  Someday, Sally will be able to make a Valentine just as impressive as Snoopy’s

And someday, maybe today, Charlie Brown will finally get that Valentine!

Never lose hope.  Never give up.  That’s a good lesson for Valentine’s Day.  That’s a good lesson for any day.

Song of the Day: Make Me Love You (by Taeyeon)

Taeyeon Make Me Love You

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.

It’s not too much a surprise that today’s latest Song of the Day is very much Valentine’s Day or, at the very least, romance-related. The song chosen comes courtesy of Taeyeon’s ballad from her first full-length album, My Voice, which saw it released in 2017.

“Make Me Love You” actually was part of the album’s deluxe edition which was released a couple months later with the song part of a trio of new one added just for this new edition.

The song has an R&B pop ballad sound that does a great job in incorporating Taeyeon’s unique voice. There’s a reason that for many year’s now that she’s been one of K-Pop’s top soloist in addition as being part of the biggest girl group in the country as leader and Main vocalist of Girls’ Generation.

We have a song that where Taeyeon seems to almost speak to the listener. For the listener to take the leap in allowing the romance begin between them and singer. It’s a ballad that speaks to the anticipation of a potential new romance and also the self-doubt that everyone goes through whenever one should or should not make the first move, leap or step in making it happen.

Happy Valentine’s Day From The Shattered Lens!

From the humans and the cat at the Shattered Lens to all of you, happy Valentine’s Day!

Some people, like the flame-haired one, love this day while the others, like almost all of the silly humans on twitters, hate this day.  Of course, if you’re a cat, every day is Valentine’s Day!

Whether you’re celebrating, observing, or denouncing this day, here’s hoping that it’s a good one for you and all of your loved ones!

As they say in the homeland, “Is tú mo ghrá!”

Music Video of the Day: All Time High, performed by Rita Coolidge (1983, dir by ????)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today’s music video of the day is for the song that was, of course, the theme song for the 1983 James Bond film, Octopussy.  Apparently, the producers realized that there weren’t many words that comfortably rhymed with the movie’s title so they tasked John Barry and Tim Rice with coming up with a theme song that would still be radio friendly.  They came up with All Time High.

And I know that some people will tell you that this is a lesser Bond theme song and apparently, Rita Coolidge used to refuse to perform it in concert because she felt that it was an “unfinished” song but I don’t care.  I absolutely love this song.  Seriously, there are two Bond song that I simply cannot stop myself from singing along with and that’s Nobody Does It Better and All Time High.

Seriously, All Time High is a hundred times better than that song they ended up using for SPECTRE.

And it’s the perfect Valentine’s Day song!  I’ll be singing this song later tonight.  Actually, I’ll be singing a medly of James Bond theme songs tonight.  It’s kind of a Valentine’s Day tradition….