4thofeleven: (Default)
Had the urge to watch the Wrath of Khan last night (New movie? What the hell are you talking about?!), and I think I’ve got a new contender for my least favourite Star Trek character:

David Marcus.

I mean, what is he even doing in the film? Alright, there’s the themes of death, resurrection, growing old – but you’ve already got Genesis, Kirk’s birthday, the Enterprise being literally crewed by cadets to illustrate those themes, having Kirk’s literal son pop up seems to be just an overly literal way of handling that.

Then there’s his characterisation. He fears Starfleet – “Scientists have always been pawns of the military” – but I have no idea where he gets that from; Carol Marcus basically rolls her eyes at that, so he’s not getting it from his mother, and considering how much his project relies on Starfleet to do the grunt work, it’s more than a little hypocritical. But then, at the end of the film, after watching Kirk risk his life, save the day, and lose his best friend, he decides to magnanimously admit that hey, his dad’s not such a bad guy after all. That’s not a character arc; that’s being a dick for 90% of the movie then at the end being slightly less of one!

And all of his dialogue feels like it should belong to other characters – hell, in his last scene, he’s literally quoting Saavak! The scene would have been so much stronger if it had actually been her talking to Kirk; Spock’s protégé and friend mourning his loss together. He has no reason to be in the movie. He has no arc, no motivation, and steals time from better characters.

Alright, maybe I’m just overly harsh because the rest of the film is so close to perfect; David feels so much like an afterthought, he sticks out like a sore thumb…

An unrelated quibble: When, exactly, could Khan have possibly learned a Klingon proverb?!
4thofeleven: (Default)
Normally I hate people who complain about hearing too much about celebrities, but normally it’s easy enough to completely avoid stories about them. Tiger Woods, though – do we really need to hear any more about him and his not very interesting problems? I ask because he was the lead story on the SBS World News tonight – Apparently his apology to the world and incidentally to his wife is clearly the most important thing that happened in the world today. I mean, damn it, the Olympics are on – he shouldn’t even be the lead story in the sports section of the news!
4thofeleven: (Default)
With the confirmed death toll now standing at 181, and dozens of fires still burning out of control, Danny Nalliah, pastor of the unfortunately named ‘Catch the Fire Ministries’ and general asshole, decided to make a statement about the bushfires.

"God's protection has been taken off the state, and Satan is having a go at the nation," Mr Nalliah, senior pastor of Catch the Fire Ministries, told The Age… Catch the Fire Ministries today starts a week-long campaign of fasting and prayer to repent the abortion law reforms and other "unrighteous, ungodly, and unjust laws and practices".
 - The Age

Now, some of you might be saying “But wait a minute, didn’t the bill decriminalising abortion pass more than three months ago? What took God so long to notice? And didn’t the ACT decriminalise abortion years ago? And what’s with the flooding in Queensland, then? – they’ve got the strictest abortion laws in the country!”

And some of you might be saying “But wait, isn’t the idea that Satan can act openly in the world with God’s consent theologically troubling for a variety of reasons?”

And then, some of you might be saying “THE HELL WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU SICKENING BASTARD?!” I think there’s a fair bit of merit to that position…

4thofeleven: (Fey'lya)
Alright, all you people who think yourselves ever so clever by butting into political discussions to announce that “The United States isn’t democracy, it’s a republic!”? Yeah, shut the hell up, please.

No, the US is not a direct democracy – but that’s hardly the only ‘real’ form of democracy. Representative democracies can be just as legitimately referred to as democracies, alright? Plus, you guys have lots of referendums and initiatives that are put to the popular vote, so you’ve got at least some elements of a direct democracy anyway.

Yes, the US is a republic – that’s not something special you get to brag about. A republic technically is nothing more than a state that is not governed by a monarch. Britain or Australia are (representative) democracies, but not republics, while China or Belarus are republics while not being democracies. The United States is both; they’re not mutually exclusive terms.

So stop saying it, alright? All it does is make you look ignorant.

Thank you.
4thofeleven: (Default)
Rant time.

On the plus side, in Ancient Greek today we had a fun discussion over whether in the passage we’re translating thanatos should be translated as simply ‘death’ or if death is being personified enough to justify a capital D...


4thofeleven: (Default)
David Newgreen

August 2017

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