23 Jan

Rushing to embrace the forthcoming publishing lists has been a hysterical frenzied gesture more and more present in the clattering class of young literary journalists who express their infantile intentions to love the forthcoming opuse of their favorite writers turning their so-called reportage into hagiogrphic paeans. Plus who has gotten through last season’s (and the season before that) crop of wonderful books. Something is very wrong in the intersection of the time lines of commerce and literature.

I was recently introduced to the HBO series Girls, a narrative and an auteur that has/ which has provoked some interesting discussion( Elizabeth Wurtzel and some rejoinder in New York magazine.. Having enjoyed the luxury of watching 4 or 5 episodes at my leisure I can echo the sentiment of the gynecologist who ends the second episode (Ist season ) saying, “I’m glad I am not a 24 year old girl.” Certainly, a clever and amusing little universe has been created but some how so uncanny as to be superreal.Which for the purpose of the screen is not bad.

Here’s a good cry if nothing else

The Elmore Leonard spawned series JUSTIFIED now in its third season seems to be sustaining its engaging conversational riffing at an entertaining level. I was aggrieved that Raylon Givens wife Winona (Nathalia Zea) had been written out of the show but pleased to MS Zea is now a romantic lead to the busted out FBI Agent played by Kevin Bacon in the new serial killer series The Following. Of course, in this story Claire (Ms Zea) plays the ex wife of a serial killer who has brutally killed 14 girls and now.from jail, engaged a following to continue his murderous ambitions.

Nathalie Zea as Claire on the Following

Nathalie Zea as Claire on the Following

Apparently Warren Ellis has a following based on his graphic novels. His new novel Gun Machine (Mullholland Books) which I enjoyed has 2 video trailers. One is considered dark and spooky The second, though quite original is more in line with conventional presentations.

Gun Machine by Warren Ellis

Gun Machine by Warren Ellis

As time passes in the shit-stream ofd public conversations there unavoidable names—currently Lance Armstrong,The Kardashians, that Notre Dame footballer, ad nauseum. Reading Gail Collins at least produced the benefit of publicizing another of Notre Dames egregious lapses in her January 18th column.

Whatever else President Obama has done he has kept alive the worthy art of public oratory. Prepatory to his 2nd Inaugural I audited his 1st Inaugural oration

Corny as it may be, I was pleased that the new President commenced that speech with, “My Fellow Citizens”. It was a rousing bit of speechifying, though more in tune with past eras way of expressing the actualities.Apropos of nothing I am wondering if I am the only person who took exception to the infelicitous use of ‘command’ in

“…That is how we will preserve our planet, commanded to our care by God. That’s what will lend meaning to the creed our fathers once declared.”

Shouldn’t the word be ‘commend’?

One of the obvious benefits of the film streaming services is the removal from the dust bin of pop culture an endless assortment of movies that one has overlooked. Long a fan of British actor Tim Roth (especially since his riveting portrayal of a poofy but deadly swordsman in the other wise forgettable Rob Roy,stumbling on Killing Emmett Young was a double treat interesting plot and outstanding performances not the least by Roth as first time contract killer

Of the landslide of books coming in the coming months weeks and days, The KRAUS PROJECT, a collection essays by the inestimable and criminally overlooked essayist/ aphorist Karl Kraus is being published under the guiding hand of novelist jonathan Franzen.

Karl Krause

Karl Krause

At least one reader was exasperated by another of Thomas Freidman’s advice-to-the-power columns—this one suggesting the Secretary of State Kerry designate toss out the so called rulebook. Foreign Policy magazine was the site of an open letter imploring the New York Times to put Freidman on a leave of absence. Good idea?

RIP Adam Swartz

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