Thursday various

  • The AV Club on Charlie’s Angels:

    If you’re going to have a show that’s appallingly retrograde and anti-feminist, the least you could do about it is have the guts to just go whole hog.

  • On The Mentalist:

    It’s a sign of how thoroughly played out serial killers have become that, after holding such a dominant place in popular culture fifteen to twenty years ago, they all have seem to have retired to CBS.

  • On Dream House:

    And of course it’s never a good sign when Elias Koteas is skulking about.

  • On Fringe:

    When it comes to stories, there are few things more gratifying than realizing the story you thought were being told wasn’t the real story at all.

  • And finally, Jean-Christophe Valtat defends steampunk:

    Now it is true that steampunk is riddled with every kind of self-duplicating cliches – zombies, airships, clockwork humans, anarchists etc… – but that is a bit like saying that mathematics are riddled with cliches because they are using the same axioms over and over. Cliches (or myths, if you prefer) are technically inherent to alternate-world building, because it would be too complicated and boring to present the reader with a world where everything would have to be explained down to the least detail: you can only present something new if it is delineated by familiar objects, if only for the reader to complete by himself what the book cannot explain or describe. The novelty – in all senses of the term – comes from the collage, the montage, the criss-crossing and hybridation of historical and fantastic references, the spark that comes from banging the cliches together. A steampunk novel is laborious and volatile dosing of the pleasures of recognition and the pleasures of discovery. Then again, the dosing can fail miserably, but it is not necessarily the genre that is to blame. [via]