Things of note for the week ending Friday 8th January, 2016.
1. AVATAR & CULTURE
This article has been doing the rounds this week.
Obviously driven by the fact that AVATAR has just been knocked from its ‘highest grossing movie in US history’ status (by that STAR WARS film you might’ve heard about) the piece takes a look at the history of the film and explores some of the other perhaps not immediately noticeable impacts it left on movie-goers…
But that’s not why I’m sharing.
When I saw the link (originally posted on a friend’s Facebook wall) it immediately got my head racing to a million different places.
For example: I wondered if you could perhaps construct quite a decent analysis about the lack of branding in AVATAR.
When you think about the cultural impact/footprints of other major films, in our recent (and not so recent) history, the sociological science behind what makes a ‘pop culture footprint’ would no doubt include the art of branding.
My immediate frame of reference for this is Tim Burton’s 1989 BATMAN (no surprise there). The branding of that is ripe for pop cultural footprintery (and arguably set the marketing approach of all superhero movies since).
When compared to the greats, AVATAR is bereft of [this kind of] branding. However the author of the piece referenced above should’ve probably gone into more about his definition of what constitutes a cultural footprint.
I’m just kicking stuff around here so not really sure where I’m taking this but I just wanted to explore the thought/thinking about what actually contributes to leaving a cultural footprint.
For what it’s worth, I think it’s unfair/completely wrong to say that AVATAR left NO cultural impact – that’s wholly untrue. Can you walk into a fancy dress store and buy a N’avi outfit? Yup. Are there huge Avatar parties every weekend? I don’t know. BUT THERE MIGHT BE.
However, aside from an unbelievable realisation of a whole other planet through the use of computers, there are no major stand out points that could impact culture [as significantly as say, I don’t know… STAR WARS].
And that contributes to it too.
Anyway, it’s a good piece and it got me thinking. It might get you thinking too.
2. GET RICH OR DIE VLOGGING
It was all so painfully awkward. That night, Brittany Ashley, a lesbian stoner in red lipstick, was at Eveleigh, a popular farm-to-table spot in West Hollywood. The restaurant was hosting Buzzfeed’s Golden Globes party. For the past two years, Ashley has been one of the most visible actresses on the company’s four YouTube channels, which altogether have about 17 million subscribers. She stars in bawdy videos with titles like “How To Win The Breakup” or “Masturbation: Guys Vs. Girls,” many of which rack up millions of views.
The awkward part was that Ashley wasn’t there to celebrate with Buzzfeed. She was there to serve them.
Being super rich with theoretical dollars ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. A tough read but so telling of the world we
created for ourselves now live in, this story, from Fusion, talks about how difficult it can be when you’re trying to make it as an up-and-coming Internet superstar. Even if you only have a passing interest in digital influencers and the whole premise of internet-celebrity in general, then you should absolutely read this article.
3. ’52 things I learnt in 2015′
As written by Tom Whitwell. There are a great bunch of random facts in this cheeky [and easily digestible] Medium post. Go read it.
4. SUPERHERO AND SURVIVOR
I don’t know if you have or have not made/found the time to take in Netflix’s second Marvel series (DAREDEVIL was the first – and it was awesome – S2 coming soon) JESSICA JONES yet however if you have, I would recommend reading this really quite excellent praise piece, via The F Word, entitled ‘Superhero and survivor‘.
Jessica Jones is just that – a superhero and a survivor; and nothing I’ve read on the subject nails it better than this.
Off you pop.
Ps. If you’ve not watched JJ yet a) go do so and b) don’t read the above yet, it’s kinda spoilery.
Got an iPhone? Really dislike the default iOS apps that you just can’t get rid of? Well, here’s a tip to make them just… disappear!
Oh and btw: no jail-breaking required.
Bonuses this week are as follows –
- Goodbye Motorola (I do not think this is a superb idea)
- I’ve been sick this week and have caught up on a TON of stuff. For one: Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee. I think I’ve talked about it before. It’s great. It really is!
- No offence (which my brain tells me I’ve shared already but I can’t figure out if it’s just my drafts playing up this week -which they have been. A lot)
Have a great weekend y’all.
This one’s for Theo.
Whatley out, x.