Yes, it's the long-awaited (by a tiny number of people) return of the Shabcast.
And for my big relaunch I'm joined by a mystery returning guest who has a kickstarter going for a new book about the McCoy-era and Wilderness Years of Doctor Who, complete with some chat about the Virgin New Adventures, the new series, and sundry other inevitable digressions. Because it's us.
Bet you can't guess who my guest is.
That's a Kickstarter you should totally contribute to, by the way. In fact I'd almost say you were morally obliged at this point. Here's the link.
And here's my Patreon.
Happy listening and pledging-of-money-to-Kickstarters-for-new-books-about-the-McCoy-era-and-possibly-also-to-my-Patreon.
(Plus, you can still buy our mystery guest's last book, to which I made a modest contribution. It too was made possible because people funded a Kickstarter.)
AND THE BEAST FROM THE SEA: The one painting in the series not to have a direct representation or invocation in the series. The tense sexuality that exists between the Dragon and the Sun-Clothed Woman is replaced here by a raw homoeroticism—a theme that is not entirely uncommon in Blake. (c.f. Object 47 of Milton a Poem) The Beast from the Sea appears in Revelation 13, one verse after the Dragon, and is said to be given his power by the Dragon, creating a sense of heritage or supplanting. In Blake, the Beast rises below the Dragon, but has clear dominion over him. Of course, that’s always how supplantation begins.
ALANA BLOOM: Maybe he's trying to stop.
JACK CRAWFORD: You think there's any way to push him to be self-destructive?
ALANA BLOOM: Push him toward suicide?
JACK CRAWFORD: Suicide suits me just fine.
WILL GRAHAM: If he's really trying to stop, he's not going to kill himself. How could he be sure his death would affect whatever's inside him?
Will’s casual apprehension of the absurd logic of Dolarhyde’s difficulties in confronting the beast within is grimly funny. A crucial question, of course, is ...
Okay, so this popped up on my Twitter feed:
Now, it's tempting, isn't it? A really desirable little chunk of cheese, just sitting there, saying "eat me!", conveniently arranged on a nice wooden platform, framed by a kind of metal wire sculpture of some kind...
I mean, there are so many possible responses. The person who I saw sharing this on Twitter responded with the admirably direct "because they're stupid as shit". I myself contemplated several possibilities. There was "So near and yet so far" and "Because they don't know about Ockham's Razor", and a more serious one, which was "Of course they discriminate! You have to when giving out grades!" And so on. It was gonna be great. I was going to flip the right-wing narrative, revealing them to be - yet again - projecting their own sense of entitlement onto the people they hate. I was going to point to their own desire for special treatment, their own snowflakehood, their own yearning for victimhood as a great big excuse, their own spoiled sense of grievance, which leads them to assume that they're right because ...
So this just got announced. Andrew Cartmel and Ben Aaronovich writing a 7th Doctor comic for Titan. This is, on the face of it, absolutely landmark. Comics were a huge influence on Cartmel, who drew a lot of his style from 2000 AD while freely plundering Alan Moore's catalog. So having him do one of his periodic returns to the McCoy era in comics is immediately interesting. It's a shoo-in for the McCoy book. Except I'm really out of stretch goal slots. So instead I'm doing a flash goal. If we can hit $10k by the end of the weekend, I'll cover this miniseries in the book. Here's the Kickstarter link. This would be an excellent time either to back it or to link it. We're at $9192 right now, so $10k by the end of Sunday is ambitious, but it's doable.
The fact that we're closing in on $10k also means that the next stretch goal is an interview with Kate Orman. The last two books have both had interviews with prominent creators who are openly fans of the era being covered—Gareth Roberts talked about the Graham Williams years, while Rob ...
How do you do fellow kids?
This week I have no less than two new podcast episodes for you from Wrong With Authority.
Daniel and I just released a new episode of Consider the Reagan, the thread in which two or more of us watch and comment on a film released during the presidency of Ronald Reagan. This time it's Daniel and myself talking about original Blade Runner (1982), followed by some chat about the recent sequel.
(By the way, if you're interested in my thoughts about Blade Runner, watch this space, because at some point I will start properly writing my vast project about the Alien series, and this will involve a fair bit of stuff about Blade Runner, because... well, wait and see.)
And the entire Wrong With Authority gang - James, Kit, Daniel, and myself - also just released a new episode covering Martin Scorsese's 2002 historical crime epic Gangs of New York, in which Daniel Day Lewis gives one of the most memorable screen performances of the early noughts, and also Leonardo DiCaprio stands in front of the camera and pulls faces.
We plan to have more such episodes for ...
AND THE WOMAN CLOTHED IN SUN: The big one. Hannibal describes its “unique and nightmarish charge of demonic sexuality,” which is fair enough, but seems desperately insufficient. Let’s add, then, a brief discussion of gaze. As John Berger memorably simplifies it, in art the norm is that “men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at.” Which at least broadly describes this picture, sure, in that we are seeing a woman being looked at. But the woman is obscured in the picture. We watch her being looked at, yes, but we do not really see her ourselves. That picture is The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed With the Sun. Here the object of our gaze is, as they say, dat ass. This isn’t so much a charge of demonic sexuality as a stunningly homoerotic vision of erotic puissance. Dolarhyde, clearly, does not miss the point nearly so much.
FRANCIS DOLARHYDE: Hello, Dr. Lecter. As an avid fan, I wanted to tell you I'm delighted that you have taken an interest in me. I don't believe you'd tell them who I am, even if you knew.
HANNIBAL: What particular body you currently occupy ...