Hi, I'm Jane, regularly publishing on Tuesday mornings. Expect to find commentary on Doctor Who, LOST, and a variety of other stuff. My focus is primarily on esoterica in science-fiction, a strange blend given the competing value systems of those different aesthetics. Such is the nature of alchemy. :)
The date is October 31st, 1973. My sister and I huddle cowardly in the dark, hopped up on sugar, two little girls spellbound by the rituals of Halloween. I still remember the ghosts, the lions and leopards, the vampires and wolves and sheep. I think we were lions that year. Our costumes would have been onesies.
My father has turned off all the lights. He puts on an album. The old turntables were analog devices, not digital. A flat circle of vinyl, upon which a tiny tip of diamond will dance crazily, the good vibrations sent through a bed of copper to be transformed into an electromagnetic pulse of sound.
It’s darker than dark. Our vision is impaired; we cannot see. The stereo is in the corner of the far wall in the living room, tucked in walnut-stained bookcases behind the end of the couch, so you can’t see the lights. We’ve only been in the house for two months, so it’s still strange, unusual, a queer place, but already the townhouse in the projects has become a distant memory as well, with only remnants of the blue-swirled carpeting preserved ...
Thank you for coming back. My travels have kept me away. I’m so sorry to have kept you waiting.
You must be hungry! Aren’t you? Maybe having a little bite of something something will help to take the edge off. Yeah, a nice morsel. A small good thing. Maybe a chicken sandwich, or a bowl of soup. Maybe some chocolate, or chips. Something charred, perhaps? Or a bit salty? Maybe something cheesy, or with tomatoes, something with color.
Whatever it is, go get it now. That tasty thing.
I’ll wait. Oh, and save one bite for the end, if you would.
Thank you. You know who you are.
Again, the opening image of the episode points to something significant in its middle, something significant that ends up being a point of failure. In “New Colossus” we first saw the eyes of the Statue of Liberty, and that place marked a huge turning point in Prairie’s life, but it wasn’t exactly a success for her. This is where her prophecy failed her – but then, maybe she was always going to ...
The_OA Exegesis is on hiatus this week, as Jane is driving across America.
But you can always listen to this, like I've been recently -- it's kind of fun given that "away" rhymes with OA. Suddenly, it's like the singer is speaking to her or something, which gives it all a different sort of (yet somehow related) context.
See you next week.
Before we begin, I’d like you to reach out and touch the screen you’re reading this from. Is it hot or cold to the touch? Glossy or matte? I bet it’s hard. You wouldn’t want to put your hand through this “glass” even if you could get it fixed for free. Notice how your hand obscures the light.
Close your eyes, and let out a faint breath, little more than a hisssss. Remember this feeling.
Remember. You know who you are.
The Statue of Liberty is formally known as La Liberté éclairant le monde – Liberty Enlightening the World. That’s a great name. In the previous essay, we talked about the symbolism of eyes and the metaphor of sight in The_OA. This is a show that is not just concerned with the visible plot or what is “literally” happening, but also (and moreso, I think) with the invisible meaning we can derive from the text (including the text of our lives). The_OA provides a window to such inner workings through the repeated use of certain thematic elements, so when Chapter 2 opens up with an ...
You know, before you start reading this, I have a favor to ask. Go get a glass of water before you settle in. If you haven’t already? It can be cold or warm, with ice or bubbles or neat. Place it anywhere within arm’s reach -- next to your keyboard, or on the coffee table, even in your lap if you want. But it has to be water – not coffee, not beer, not a soda. Just water.
I mean it. I’m serious. Go ahead, I’ll wait.
Thank you. You know who you are.
Let’s start with something that might seem very subtle at first, and yet upon reflection is blatantly obvious – the Bridge. The very first scene of The_OA begins on a bridge, where we see OA jump off the side. She's not to trying to kill herself, she later says; rather, she’s trying to go back and find Homer, someone she left behind. This is apparently to be accomplished by falling into the Mississippi River.
This jump off a bridge is bookended by the great scene at the end of ...
So, it's been a while since I've put something up on Eruditorum Press. My bad. Got caught up in work-related travel, and then there was the return of the intestinal bug, and, well... I apologize, because I've been sitting on this awesome Giant Woman podcast for two weeks now, where Shana and I talk more about Steven Universe.
In this installment of Giant Woman we cover Bubble Buddies and Serious Steven the 7th and 8th episodes of Season One. And as both of these episodes are quite good, so too is the conversation around them, although to be fair I blew it in my analysis of the Beatles' song "Strawberry Fields Forever" as an influence on Serious Steven, as I completely neglected to mention that the song is a fusion of two different takes. Seriously, where was my brain at?
As always, you can get your Giant Woman fix at the Oi! Spaceman library of podcasts right here.
So, yes, we’ve got another Giant Woman podcast on tap for you. Woo hoo! But I’m struggling to find good pictures of giant women from pop culture. Too many are simply objectifying; others fall into a warrior aesthetic that really doesn’t capture our take on Steven Universe. If any of our faithful readers have some clever ideas, drop them in the comments, or contact me and Shana on twitter (@JanieCampbell23 and @inkyosa, respectively), and we'll adjudicate appropriately.
In the meantime, of my own accord, I present you with a plushie -- a side order of fries in some kind of fusion with Hello Kitty. Because the episodes that we cover in this podcast are Frybo and Cat Fingers. Also, I'm hoping this image captures some of the charms of late capitalism, not that we'd ever cover such territory in a Steven Universe podcast. Nope. Not happening. Even if we did manage to invoke Jack Graham a half-dozen times in the first half alone. Just a coincidence, promise.
Finally, a note on content: there's some stuff in here on body discomfort and alcoholism. Just so you know.
You can ...
Okay, the podcast isn't literally fifty feet. Because we don't use spools of magnetic tape for recording anymore. We use computers. And so trying to measure a podcast as such would be ludicrous.
What's not ludicrous is the podcast itself, Giant Woman, the second in what's shaping up to be an ongoing series with Shana and Jane talking about Steven Universe. You can get the podcast here.
By the way, we are planning to go to Virgina Beach next year (yes, I really like to plan things out in advance) for the Beach City Con, a Steven Universe convention in Beach City. The kickstarter for it is already funded, but of course the more that's pledge the more awesome the con will be! Check it out here.
Finally, for those listening to the podcast, I forgot to mention that the theme song itself indicates that a "spiritual" approach wouldn't be inappropriate for intepreting the show. After all, "That's why the people of this world... believe in..."
...believe in giant women! Because giant women are awesome. Literally!