April 5, 2008

talking about quarterlife

me: so what did you think of quarterlife?
louisa: i only watched like the first 10 or so episodes so far. i mean the mini ones, on the website
me: right, how do you feel about the mini-ones? i couldn;t stand the little tiny segments
louisa: i felt fine about them. interruptions don't bother me.
i liked the mini things for the same reason i like books with short chapters
because you are always near another good stopping point
me: its funny because of course they shouldn't bother me, i mean they're no different from commercial breaks
me: but i guess i just hardly ever watch shows not on dvd or whatever so i've stopped being used to that kind of segmentation
louisa: right but now people are getting used to tivo and shows on dvd, a lot of people are getting unused to watching ads
louisa: so, i thought it was a lot like other soap opera-ish shows out there. i definitely got hooked and was like ok just one more, over and over
louisa: i definitely recognized real things in there, that don't get talked about a lot
louisa: about what its like to be young. like, you feel like you should be doing something amazing and wonderful, like that weird friend of debra who's always going to protests and stuff
me: yeah
louisa: but in reality, nothing you do seems amazing, you just do what you can do
and like dylan working at the stupid magazing and the boys making commercials. thats not their dream of doing something amazing, but its all they have right now
and then debra maybe doesn't even have a dream so she's just doing what's easy
me: its interesting how well they develop all those ideas in just 7 hour long episodes
louisa: true
louisa: so that stuff is interesting cause i feel like it hasn't always been the situation for 20-somethings. these days going to college is not really enough and getting a steady job is not enough, you also have to be changing the world.
then the relationship stuff, at least so far, i think maybe is not that different from other soaps
but as always its entertaining
me: althought i've never actually seen thirtysomething (its not out on dvd) from what i know its very much about people who went to college in the 60s and now are just standard American consumerist families... and then there's my so-called life which is actually about urban high schools and poor kids and ethnic kids and smart kids who are stuck there... and i like the way quarterlife is kind of caught between those (and indeed that phase of life is very much caught between those)
me: i can see why critics, especially like upper middle class new york times critics, would criticize that because it is so ambivalent, so caught between responsibility and dealing with victimhood, but i like very much that narrative of not only life and growing up but of life and growing up on tv and as television narrative
louisa: mhmm. and its cool that its about her video blog but it isn't just her video blog
like lonelygirl and this katemodern are basically made up of people's video blog posts, but this way we get to see what its like growing up online and how its accepted and not
cause posting stuff online and pissing people off is so common now
me: and its funny how its both very much our own experience and yet also clearly something younger, or something new, even newer than us
me: i mean dylan on quarterlife is our age but i dont know anyone who has a videoblog
its both the present, our present, and the future
louisa: well yeah, maybe it's not because she's younger, i think its because the fictional quarterlife website somehow makes it magically easy to record and edit your videos
me: haha yeah that too
louisa: i mean a lot of kids now have the hardware and the skills to make videos, but not quite that easily
8:00 PM
me: im gonna post this convo about quarterlife in my blog, ok?
louisa: what?! my end too?
me: is that ok?
i think it was a good discussion/analysis. good follow up
louisa: well i guess if you think its worth posting then it must not sound as stupid as i might think
louisa: so alright

the texts.

What I've been reading:
batman: year one- frank miller
the dark knight returns- frank miller
the original x-men, the uncanny x-men, the ultimate x-men
The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love- Oscar Hijuelos
Breath, Eyes, Memory- Edwidge Danticat
The Half-Mammals of Dixie- George Singleton
20th Century Ghosts- Joe Hill

What I'm reading now:
Fresh Lipstick- Linda Scott

some of the things I'm looking forward to reading soon:
Watchmen- Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons
Green Lantern/Green Arrow Collection, Volume 1- Dennis O'Neil
on comics
Super Heroes: A Modern Mythology - Richard Reynolds
Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art- Scott McCloud
Comic Book Nation: The Transformation of Youth Culture in America - Bradford W. Wright
on television
Beautiful TV: The Art and Argument of Ally McBeal- Greg Smith
Redesigning Women: Television after the Network Era- Amanda Lotz

What I've been watching:
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 7)
highlight: series finale- Chosen
The New, Original Wonder Woman
Arrested Development
highlight: gob, his illusions and the final countdown
Freaks and Geeks
highlight: the show is set in 1980 and goes all out to get authentic, original music and it makes all the difference
batman begins
superman returns
the x-men
clerks, mallrats, chasing amy, dogma

what i've been listening to:
alkaline trio
the draft
hank williams III

what i've been thinking about:
moving to austin, texas to get my master's in the department of radio-tv-film at the university of texas (see Mary Celeste Kearney "The Changing Face of Teen Television or Why We All Love Buffy" in Undead TV, S. Craig Watkins Hip Hop Matters, and Janet Staiger Media Recepton Studies)