Thursday, November 2, 2017

F***!!!! F***!!! F***!!! F*** IT!!!! THERE'S NOTHING ELSE TO TALK ABOUT, SO HARVEY WEINSTEIN AND.... (Sigh!) ALL THE SCANDALS AND WHAT TO MAKE OF IT!? or I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE! OH DEAR GOD WHY ARE YOU PUNISHING ME FOR MY CAREER CHOICE LIKE THIS?! I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE! I HATE MY LIFE!....:

(Depressed begotten sigh)

Harvey Weinstein
James Toback
Andy Signore
James Woods
Kevin Spacey
Jeremy Piven
Brett Ratner
Dustin Hoffman

Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! Fuck!, Fuck!!!!!!!!!!

Am I forgetting anybody?

Andy Dick

Fu-, Oh, that's like the tenth worst thing he does/did; I'm not counting somebody who's gimmick is sexual harassment, that's just overkill. Anyone else?

Donald Trump

FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So..., if you've been following the entertainment news, you're probably some combination of depressed, exhausted, humiliated, violated in all likelyhood. You've probably pondered taking up drinking if you hadn't already, and you've noticed that you've had a more difficult time enjoying your porn lately, not to mention every other goddamn movie and TV series you can think, now you're just thinking and pondering those deep questions about just how many of the actresses that applied for that role of Intern #5 so-and-so had groped or audition topless, or masturbate into a plant in front of them, or, just-, you're just done, quite frankly, with all of this, and yet, you know, damn well, this is....  oh god, I'm just an entertainment commentator and reporter; why the hell are you doing this to me?! Is this my penance for the Eagles having a winning season? If I wanted to talk about horrible shit this, I would've taken that weekend anchor job in Unica two years ago....AHHHHHHHHHH!

(Thirty minutes of crying, a big gulp of diet coke, bowl of leftover Halloween candy and two shots of whiskey later)

(Deep, sighing breath)

Pandora's box is opened people, and,- all I really know in all of this is that I have to say something, I've positioned myself in a place where I have to say something; this is an entertainment blog, I'm an entertainment commentator and critic; if I don't say something, it's gonna look like I'm waiting around for it to end, which, A. spoiler, that ain't happening; it ain't happening today, it ain't happening tomorrow, it won't happen for awhile and it won't happen even after it supposedly stops happening, but B., I'm gonna look like I'm not doing my job by trying to ignore the realities of the entertainment business, to-, I don't know, talk about something else trivial going on at the moment...,  and yet, what is there to say? There's no cure-all; there's no, magic words I can say. There's no shock; I can't feign being surprised; 'cause none of this is actually shocking or surprising. I mean, this isn't some unopened secret, I've heard stuff about some of those names for years. Hell, I can names names of others I've heard about. I'm not going to. Cause it's just rumor and secondhand stories about (NAMES DELETED) and whomever else 'cause I don't have absolute proof, I don't have the means to investigate to find out for sure; I probably wouldn't do that anyway if I'm being honest, since I'd pretty certain it wouldn't lead anywhere since I'd probably be a pretty lousy investigative reporter, and besides that, that's not what this site's for. Believe me, I'm tempted, to push some theories and innuendo, but, I don't think that helps anybody.. Not the abusers, not the industry, and certainly not the victims, who are actually giving their own personal stories and accounts, and not, my uninformed gossip.

So, what do we do now?!

Before I go off and try to answer that question, in my blogspeak, let me answer it more bluntly.

I don't know. I'm not pretending I do.

Before you go off on everything else I might add, remember that, "I DON'T KNOW, and I'M NOT PRETENDING I DO." For all, I know, everything I'm about to say here is wrong-headed, misinformed, simplified,...- just wrong. These are just, the confused, unsured, conflicted thoughts of a commentator, who has a job to do of commenting on the goings-on of the entertainment world, and honestly, finds himself in a no-win position, of having to do his job, where there's no step I can take where I'm not bellyflopping onto some mine.... So, since I'm damned either way, let's try again. What do we do now?! Or better, what am I trying to do?

(Shrugs)

I'm basically, posting anything I can find on this blog's Facebook and Twitter accounts, try to contextualize each situation differently, 'cause-, they need to be contextualize each situation differently..., I'm sorry, but we have to. Like, I know, this is a major shift in the cultural landscape at the moment happening, and sure, I'm happy about it. I'm annoyed that the Weinsteins and the Ratners and the Spaceys and the Cosbys and the Darren Sharpers of the world are finally getting publicly-known, and more importantly, the public is being righteously outraged by their actions, but, that's on a general scale. On a personal and professional scale, on an investigative side, I'm not gonna ostracize somebody talented simply because they may at one point have grabbed somebody ass that they shouldn't have. And sure, that's probably harsh and wrong, and yes, I might be presumptuous here, and ignorant of me, to think, that somebody getting called out for their actions, once doesn't mean that they haven't done it dozens or hundreds of times over.

Spacey's the one I'm thinking of here. I mean, taking that report from Anthony Rapp, at face value, and singularly, it's bad, but it's also thirty+ years ago, and based on Rapp's depiction, is it that unlikely that a young, in the closet Spacey, perhaps drunkenly, made a movie on Rapp, that he probably doesn't realize or remember her did, and he wasn't capable or willing of doing much more than that since Rapp escaped pretty easily. Okay, it's gross beyond recognition, that that's the moment he finally decided would be good for him to come out, which, yes, we've all known about him being gay for years, that isn't remotely news, but, let's say he thought Rapp was older, let's say he didn't realize what he was doing, and suddenly, he thinks he thought he was Justin-ing him, like an older Brian does, to make an obscure "Queer as Folk" reference, sorta. I think. (I really gotta go back and catch up on that one) Is that the worst thing, this one incident that happened 30+ years ago, that's so bad he shouldn't work again and he should lose his critically-beloved and successful television show over?

And, if that was the only incident I'd ever heard about Kevin Spacey, I'd say that's a solid argument, except it's not. It's-, it's just not. It's not. It's just not. (It was also "not", when I originally wrote this too. I know there's been more reports public, but I'd heard.)

I don't know, what to tell ya, he is probably a bigger asshole than we think, or at least he was at that time. He probably still is, if you look at some of his personal history, I'm not trying to be too empathetic but, he didn't grow up in the best of circumstances, and situations, and the way some describe him, he seems pretty much like a sociopath by some accounts. But, maybe this was mostly his behavior in the past; I don't know if he's changed or not, and yes, that should matter, whether somebody changes, or make considerable quality efforts to improve their behavior and recognize their wrongs and if it's not possible to make amends, legally through prison time, or whatever else, even if it's only a personal recovery, that should be taken into account. I mean, we basically had this similar discussion with Trrrrrrrrrr-ummmmmmmmmmm-, with Schwarzenegger. With Schwarzenegger! Remember when he was running for Governor during that weird year when California went nuts and had that stupid recall election for stupid reasons, and a bunch of people suddenly came out and talked about how grope-y Arnold had been for years? He admitted it, and we seemed okay with that, and then he got elected, and he went on to, have an affair and bastard child with his maid and totally made his wife, the Goddess Maria Shriver look like an idiot, and this is why I don't want to talk about this, because there's no goddamn good way to look at this thing! UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm trying to place these observation, in a position, where I'm not defending sexual predators here, and yeah, none of those women I groped, did I rape, and the affair was consensual between them, is not a good defense, and I fundamentally get that! I do,  but, I am trying to explain context and make a bigger point here. Yes it matters now, more than ever, and we know why it does, and why it should, and why stopping this kind of behavior is a good thing.

The reason it is so hard, is because it is about context, but it's not simply just sexual, it's about power, and the men, who've found a little bit of it come their way, and have decided to abuse it, sexually. Look, I don't know, who's gonna be revealed and reviled as the next Hollywood sexual predator in the next hour, or anything, but I know, that, in most of these cases, the subtext is power and control. That's what all sexual violence is about. This isn't about shy, unknowing men, stumbling and struggling to try and get a date, and is so unsure of the norms because of the vast madonna/whore cultural perceptions of women that's presented to men, that if made them unable to communicate in the simplest terms with women, simply because of their gender, which,, is actually a thing and some day it should probably be looked at. (Seriously, like, there's something there. Look at Japan, in particular, men aren't losing their virginity 'til their thirties there, and they're completely inundated with hentai porn; there's probably a correlation.) No, this is getting a little bit of power over somebody else and exercising it, and this happens in every industry. It's high-profile, 'cause it's Hollywood, but, you can find parallels throughout the cultural landscape, Washington, the Church(es) everywhere and stuff like this, has been cultivated and developed through all our industries, to one degree or another for years, and even if it hasn't, you think there's ever been a job or occupation out there that hasn't had one purveyor be some kind of sexual predator? Behaviors and accepted norms of what constitutes sexually abusing/assaulting somebody, that, sure, maybe that's changed drastically over time, and maybe some people are slow to understand or pick up on that, but that power dynamic hasn't. Hopefully that's changing somewhat now; I doubt it will ever go away, entirely.

How did Weinstein get so much power anyway, come to think about it?



So, that's a trailer of the first film he ever produced, a "Friday the 13th" ripoff called "The Burning," which he wrote the original story off of. Apparently he liked the power producing gave him, 'cause that's by far, been the majority of his career. There's a couple directing and writing credits elsewhere, around, like, this:



and he directed whatever the hell this is:
http://123netflix.com/watch/0v8YW2xw-the-gnomes-great-adventure.html

And literally that's it, by the way. Harvey Weinstein, has never been a creative type of any kind; but he's supposedly had a Midas touch of some kind when it comes to film projects and he what the Public will like or not, and he's also masterfully manipulated, basically every Oscar campaign rule and loophole you can imagine. That's why this one, is particularly big, he didn't just have power and dominance, over the women that he molested and assaulted, he had power over Hollywood itself. That why, this little "revelation" (finger quotes), is particularly disturbing and off-putting. Like, I did an article about Cosby a long time ago, and I did it pretty easily, 'cause while his reign of terror, was probably a great deal worst to be honest than Weinstein's at least on his victims, I still could separate myself from it. Even considering Cosby's fame and importance, we can still be legitimately outraged and angry, and still kinda not feel like, this was systemic issue with us, entirely. But Weinstein, basically is a representative of Hollywood. I mean, think about it, how many producers could you name off the top of your head in this day-and-age, and I don't mean, name an actor or director who also produces, I mean, somebody who is basically just known and famous for being a Hollywood producer? If I go back in time I can name, say David O. Selznick or Hal B. Wallis or Louis G. Meyer or Walt Disney or somebody, but today, I probably could, but I'd have to think about if for a bit; the medium isn't dominated by producers, the fact that Weinstein was so infamous is in of itself kind of disturbing.

What this is, is a purge, essentially; we're finally unblocking our mind to all our disturbing realizations of how the business is run, and now, we're finally getting rid of many, if not all the unsavory influences that haven't just been prevalent in this day-and-age, if I were a betting man, I'd still probably say this stuff was probably much worst back in the golden ages of Hollywood than it was now, but it's what it represents to us today.

Does that mean that, those people should never work in Hollywood again? (Shrugs) I don't know, honestly.  I think mitigating and punishing the behaviors is the first step, and sure, even if Spacey and Weinstein going into "treatment" is just faux-window dressing, that doesn't work; I have trouble condemning them for that. And, I certainly think it's possible and actually probable that, there's people in Hollywood, who would certainly be a sexual predator that's as bad or worst than those names above, in all other descriptions, but has never remotely taken advantages of such urges and desires. I mean, what would happen, if we found that out, somebody claiming that the would be a sexual monster towards people, but in fact wasn't in their actions and behavior, should that guy/gal's show be cancelled or would he have to give up his company? I mean, it's completely irrelevant hypothetical at the moment, this isn't some "Chloe in the Afternoon" scenario, these people didn't do that, but....

When/if every dirty little casting couch secret of Hollywood comes out, we have to make a ruling, and determine just how much or how little these revelations about these people, effect how we perceive them. Cause if you're just thinking, we'll were just gonna ban these bad people and they won't work anymore, well, A. you're dreaming, and B. from a purely artistic standpoint, to quote Han Suyin, "Moralist have no place in an art gallery." And it's true, if you're gonna go after one, you're gonna have to ostracize everyone through the medium and throughout art, and let's face it, nearly every major name out there, is some kind of asshole, and probably did just as much horrific and horrible stuff to other people as these guys have done, and we haven't stopped honoring their work. Now, you might be thinking, I'm panning Weinstein's acts for him not being a creative, but sorta letting off others because they are creative, and, yes, I am. Sorry, if you think that's troubling, but...- (Shrugs) I'm sorry it matters. There is a "You can be this pervy and still be working because of talent scale," out there. I'm not condoning it, but there is and that's how people are remembered. I mean, Michael Jackson just got named the highest-grossing dead celebrity for the fifth year in a row, and yes, he was a pedophile. I'm-... I probably could say something now that he's dead, but let's just say, I've heard enough from credible secondhand sources, that yes, he was a pedophile. You want to bring up Polanski or Woody Allen winning awards long afterwards as well, fine, too. You're gonna have a hard time finding saints who are saints, much less celebrities, much less talented ones, 'cause it's not a coincidence that the most creative, important and inventive artists out there, are usually the ones that were more prone to breaking the borders society puts upon itself. So... good luck with that, Utopian Hollywood full of Salieri's you're hoping happens. Sure, don't worry too much, you can and many people have become the great actors/directors/etc., the artistic geniuses of the world and not been such creeps and they will be found and rise to the top of the industry in the future. Are those the only great artists that will rise, only the good people, not a snowball's chance in Hell.

That's the one thing that puts this industry outside of every other, you can usually find somebody who can do the same job they were doing, who's not a sexual predator and not miss a step. Artists, maybe athletes, that's not the case. The best and most distinctive are that way, 'cause at most, there's only a few at most of each of them. In other words, Weinstein's replaceable; I might even argue; him, in particular, has been detrimental to the industry as a whole, just for being in it, without even considering his personal behavior, I can make that argument. Others, some are, some aren't. (Shrugs) Some will be left in the dustbin of history, and thank goodness and some may indeed earn and deserve a second chance in the future and some might even get one, and painful as that may seem to some, that's just gonna be what happens.

I mean, this is where we're gonna end up with this, maybe not today or tomorrow, but I remember when people use to lose TV shows, for being too politically outspoken, so, sure, let's cancel "House of Cards" because it's star is a creep instead, probably a better reason to do it than other reasons they've had to cancel good, popular shows. (Okay, fine, full disclosure, I might not be so cavalier to think that, if I didn't partially think "House of Cards" had been almost unwatchable since Season 3.) Each one's gonna be different though, so be prepared to take sides on some names, 'cause this won't always be so clear-cut in the future, and, when those situations occur, well, let's hope you're judgment of people and situations is right.

For now, we'll hold off on trying to appreciate their work as artists, for awhile, until, we, Hollywood as a culture has sufficiently, grieved, or.... come to-, (Sigh) whatever the term is/will be. If we can separate the two in the future, then we'll try to do that.

I feel sorry that we're doing it now, instead of in the past, and I do worry about going too far with the overall, and assumptions that can occur if we don't look at the nuances, but that could very easily just be a future that I'm imagining, and has no basis in reality. I don't know, I'm not pretending to, and as much as we would like to do something else, if there isn't anything that we can contribute, then, let's just, do what we're already doing. Keep posting new news and development, watch from a distance, and whatever other activity we need to do, to mitigate those upset feelings in our guts right now.


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