The Death of Hollywood

I was listening to sportsball radio off the interwebs the other days and I kept hearing ads for the fall television lineup from CBS. The sportball station is affiliated with CBS Sports, so they do cross marketing of their content. Like most people, commercials of all kinds are just background noise to me most of the time. Maybe radio ads have some sort of subliminal effect, but my suspicion is they are just a waste of money. I barely listen to the content. Like most people, radio is just background noise for me.

Anyway, I was about to turn off the radio and do something else when they were going through the “great new shows” on CBS. Having dropped television, I stopped to listen to the promos out of curiosity. I can’t remember the last time I followed a network TV show like a sitcom or serial drama. Probably Seinfeld 20 years ago. Anyway, the ad was long and ran through a list of shows, describing each one in exited tones. What was striking is that each sounded more horrible than the next. Here’s the list.

I can’t help but notice the number of shows dedicated to defending the realm. Some of the shows could be anything, but 12 are clearly about agents of the state defending the state against the bad people. Most of these are shows about the sorts of people our social media overlords are trying to create on-line. That is, they use their super goodness powers to magically identify the crime-thinker. Rather than having a tough guy doing the hard work of policing the streets, its a dork using brain waves to zap the bad thinkers.

Looking at the other networks, it’s a slightly different trend. ABC shows are mostly about unconventional families, non-whites and women. Fox is full of blacks and race mixers, but with a low-brow comedy theme. NBC is heavy on the fire department shows for some reason. Maybe they struck a deal with CBS. Again, these are shows about defending the realm against threats. If you were observing America from another planet, just using television, you would think America is riddle with crime and fire bugs,

As a cord cutter, I have no occasion to see any of these shows, so I could be all wrong about the quality and content. I just know that the only network show I hear mentioned in my daily life is Big Bang Theory. I do hear plenty of people talk about shows they follow on cable or service providers like Amazon and NetFlix. Maybe the people I interact with on a daily basis are not the typical network TV viewers, but my guess is the audiences for network shows have shrunk quite a bit over the last decade.

My other hunch, and I may be way off base on this, but I suspect these shows are written by women or at least have lots of female writers. Shows like The Good Fight and Madame Secretary are obviously aimed at cat ladies. The latter was clearly an infomercial for Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign. It is a safe bet they had shows written about how the main character wins the White House, so they could retool the show to be about the wonderfulness of having the first female President. Thank you Donald Trump.

On the other hand, the apparent crappiness of television shows could simply be a part of the general crappiness of the mass media culture. The movie business is suffering from a season of very expensive flops. So much so the whole business model is being called into question. Bad movies are getting yanked from theaters and the theaters are offering incentives to people to watch the bad movies. Maybe it is just a blip, but the big studios are treating this like a sea change in the business. Something big is happening.

Or, maybe it already happened. The last time “everyone watched” a network show was probably the 90’s with Seinfeld or maybe the Simpsons. When was the last time you heard someone use a pop culture referenced to a sitcom or network drama? What’s happening to the movie business, may have happened to network TV and no one noticed because of the cable shows and cord cutting phenomenon. Put another way, the root cause of all of these phenomenon may be a change in who runs the media business.

It could also be the radical feminization and politicization of the business, rather than the product. The sexual harassment hysteria gripping both Hollywood and the news entertainment rackets suggest the cat ladies are staging a final takeover. Someone named Mark Halperin is the latest male to be hurled into the void by the ladies. The general awfulness of our mass media could simply be the result of diving off the talent and replacing it with social justice warriors and their crazed enablers.

I watched the HBO series Rome recently. It was on about ten years ago and covered the period from the rise of Julius Caesar to the triumph of Octavian over Antony. It was a big budget affair with lots of well done costumes. The story, on the other hand, was mostly about the catty women and their intrigues. That and overly long sex scenes that were unrealistic and stupid. Feminist love this stuff, which is why every tackle-faced cat lady in America camped out to see the film adaptation of 50 Shades of Gray.

I’ve argued on and off for a while now that we are at the end of a great cultural cycle. The old culture that was born and flourished in the 20 century is dead. We still have the structures and institutions from that era, but they are husks of themselves. There is no cultural energy to animate them and give them vibrancy. The collapse of Hollywood may be a sign of it. Movies and TV are artifacts of the last century. Like zombies, these institutions shuffle along, searching for brains, but they are finally collapsing into dust.

118 thoughts on “The Death of Hollywood

  1. Of the relatively new shows:
    – Bull is pretty good – it tackles a topic – the legal system – from a point of view seldom seen – that of a firm dedicated to getting every advantage (legally), by using shadow juries to tweak their strategy. To be fair, it’s based on an assumption – that you can, by knowing someone’s public information and demographics, predict their vote in a jury room.
    – Mom is an absolute hoot – two alcoholic/chemical dependents trying to get, and stay, sober. Mom and daughter. MUCH funnier than you would think, and surprisingly un-feminist and un-sentimental about how women REALLY act with each other.

    • “Mom” sounds like an American version of Britain’s glorious “Absolutely Fabulous”.

      Ab Fab was two fortysomethings grabbing all the men, drink, and drugs they could get.

      So outrageously un-PC the lads at Oxford renamed the Nelson Mandela hall, “Leona Helmsley Hall”.

  2. Social Justice Warriors aren’t funny because most things funny are slightly mean and insulting. They are narrow-minded and so puritanical, they self-edit out all their creativity.

    Since they have taken over most entertainment venues, it’s no surprise that entertainment absolutely sucks.

  3. Lately I have been watching Univision, the Spanish TV network, to try to improve my Spanish listening comprehension.

    It’s a good exercise for doing that, but the other night I found myself watching, and enjoying Mira Quien Baila!, roughly the Spanish equivalent of Dancing With The Stars, I suppose, and enjoying it. I say “I suppose,” because I’ve never watched an episode of Dancing With The Stars. In fact, I can’t watch anything on television without getting bored or annoyed except college football.

    Anyway, when I caught myself enjoying Mira Quien Baila! I pulled up short and asked myself why.

    Right off the bat I recognized that one of the main reasons was that many of the women dancing on Mira Quien Baila! are well endowed and dressed in short revealing dresses.

    I’m not normally a guy who cares much for watching dancing of any sort, but for some reason I was really enjoying this. Maybe it was because all the people on the show were white – upper class Latinos are all essentially Europeans – with the exception of one black woman going by the monicker “Chiki Bomba”. Even old Chiki acted more Latino than black, in the typical U.S. incarnation of that color.

    The dancing itself? Well, maybe that had something to do with it too. It was all suggestive and sexy, but it wasn’t that typical black dancing you see nowadays which primarily consists of women turning around and shaking their big black asses at the camera. It was that typical Latin sexy dancing. There’s plenty of ass shaking, but it’s mixed with some other moves. Knowing nothing about dancing, my best description of it was that it looked kind of Tango-ish.

    The music was all that type of music you typically associate with Latin America, which I like to think of as Ricky Ricardo music, except for one act near the end which trotted out a couple of black guys, one fat, and both wearing funky shades inside, loose clothes, big chains and those Jamaican style hair caps or bonnets or whatever they are. They shook loose fists at the camera sideways in the American rap style all the while muttering something that I guess probably rhymed in Spanish, against a back drop of some drum heavy piece. It was basically your typical American hip hop act with some Latin rythyms thrown in.

    Anyway, Latin dancing and music aside, I find I can tolerate watching Univision for extended periods of time. This might be because my Spanish listening comprehension is not all that hot, but I think it’s more than that.

    It’s definitely not the quality. Spanish TV is as stupid or stupider than U.S. television.

    But The girls on all the shows are hot, for one thing. This is a curious thing because I don’t find women on U.S. television sexy in the least. I’m guessing these Latin chicks look better because they seem to strut their stuff. Of course there is also the fact that even the lady newscasters have great knockers and wear clothes that accentuate them, but while most all these gals are hot and act hot, they somehow don’t look like whores.

    I guess maybe this is partly because the Latina chicks seem to be able to strut their stuff with some meaure of class, but I think mainly it’s because except for the commercials put on by U.S. firms like Walmart, there’s a distinct shortage of blacks appearing on Latin TV.

    They’re just not there, and once you pick up on it, it’s striking. It reminded me that my Spanish tutor, who lives in Central America and whom I communicate with by Skype, once guessed that the population of the US was 30% ~ 40% black, based on what she’s seen on U.S. television.

    Once I started paying attention to the difference between Latin TV and U.S. TV, I started picking up on other things.

    The heroes on Latin TV are all guys, like they used to be on U.S. TV long ago, and when they rescue the women from some threat the women are all thankful, and respond by embracing them and giving them deep kisses. All the Wonder Women, the tough lady cops, and Jennifer Lawrences saving the world and their whiny pussy boyfriend in the Hunger Games trilogy – that’s all mostly absent from Latin TV, as far as I can tell.

    The commercials are the same way.

    So maybe the progs are right. Maybe the society is completely arbitrarily constructed based on norms determined and propagated by the power brokers – the patriarchy in the case of the evil more developed West – and maybe the gals and the gal boys have it right by taking over the media and forcing their reconstituted crap down our throats.

    Maybe younger more impressionable guys who grow up seeing all the indoctrination on TV and in the rest of the media will grow up accepting all this garbage and incorporating it into their conception of the brave new world.

    And we’ll all live happily ever after.

    • On Univision, as you have noted, the chicks are hot, the guys are handsome, the sex roles tend to be more traditional, the vibe is very heterosexual, and blacks are conspicuous by their absence. So I can see why somebody might prefer to watch it as opposed to the crap on today.

      As I have said before, if your country is going to be overrun with semi-civilized Third-Worlders, you could de worse than Mexicans. I’d far rather live in Mexico than in Nigeria or Syria, which it looks like is going to be Europe’s fate. But I’d much prefer to live in the United States, and I see no practical or moral reason why I shouldn’t be allowed to.

    • Fiebre! (Fever)- smokin’ hot latina dancers dressed in dental floss. Thank you God!

      And Mexico’s most popular show, the weather news. Why? When that lady turns sideways, half the screen is obscured.

  4. When was the last time you heard someone use a pop culture referenced to a sitcom or network drama?

    Game of Thrones gets quoted all the time, but otherwise very rarely.

  5. It’s all propaganda these days, to brainwashes the masses. Gay is good! African-Americans is good! You see gays on almost every show and the commercials are 50% African-American.

    Once the tranny crap started, guess what? Out came trannies in shows. That show about 500+ lb fatties? One came out as a tranny. Sorry, hun, you can put on frilly panties, a dress, heels and makeup BUT YOU AREN’T A GIRL! I am one, so I know. Funny how all the m to f trannies all want to play dress up. Many girls/women I know HATE dresses, makeup, heels, and God help us, bras.

    Plus – it’s all about the sex now. I preferred when they hinted at but didn’t show people dry humping/showing their tongues down each other throats. Sex is private – or should be. Public sex starts crossing over to porn.

    I know a lot of old TV was silly and dumb, but at least you could watch it with Grandma or your dad or your son. Now? No.

    As for Star Trek – well gee. Lead is African-American. Gay couple. First captain Asian-American. Whites need not apply! They even have a cadet who is supposedly special needs, the silly twit blurts out that she’s special needs in her first scenes. Right, like someone that screwed up would make it on a Starship.

    As preachy as The Next Gen. was, it was nothing compared to this SJW’s wet dream. And so goes much of television. Movies? Aimed at the 300+ lb boy-men living in the basement, pissed because they can’t get sex, and eating Cheetos and playing the latest video game. Superheroes galore, or impossibly trim women who fall for loser type geeks. And Big Bang Theory. Thoroughly unlikable.

    I watch DVDs these days or documentaries. It’s hard to avoid the SJW crap though. Even on period pieces now, you must have your gays; even if it’s not period appropriate (Downton Abbey where most were on board with it) or English series where while they got the history right, they still had to have the token lesbian.

    It’s not aimed at straight white males, or white females who aren’t lesbian man-hating barren cat women.

    So if it all comes down on their heads in Hollywood some day, so be it.

    The abuse is real. We’ve heard about it for years. Any woman – even those of us happily married to regular men can tell you stories. Some men are just pigs and *most* women I know have at least been sexually molested, if not outright abused. It’s out there and not a construct of an angry lesbian cat woman.

    • Forgive the typos. Sometimes the brain sees the word differently than it comes out on the screen. I rely heavily on the edit function at most sites.

    • Yeah, the SJW crap is really getting old.

      It’s become very obvious how hard they’re pushing the black thing and the woman thing. One of the commercials I noted recently was one for Lyft (the car sharing service) which purports to show an Apollo like module circling the Earth with a caption underneath that reads: ” 1971 ” – with a woman and a black man in it.

      Ummm …….. no, that’s not what happened.

  6. What?!?! “Rome” was AWESOME. That was the one with the two guys in it that – everything they came across, they either killed it or f***** it, right? The other good one was Spartacus: Blood And Sand. Shoulda been called Spartacus: Porn & Guts! Clearly Z has no appreciation for fine cinema!

    Speaking as an obviously low brow dirt person on entertainment – I otherwise agree with you and I will say this about that: as it goes for Hollywood, so it goes for publishing. I had to stop buying fiction because it’s all social justice; plot and theme have been pitched into the garbage! Don’t buy a book if it’s written by a woman – you’ve been warned. If the book has won some prestigious literary award – that is the kiss of death too. Those books will be social justice lectures with graphic scenes of fudge packing mixed in with propaganda about the righteousness of Marxism, feminism, homosexuality or some other degenerate nonsense.

    I am watching your buddy, Vox Day, very carefully. Have you seen his new comic enterprise? I thought at first it would be a flop where his ‘alt-heroes’ spent their time beating the chit out of Pajama Boy… but he seems to be avoiding that and going for an almost ‘Heavy Metal’ metal publication. The gay and flimp crowd are having kiniptions over it. I am 53 years old and if I saw that on the magazine rack – I would probably buy it! LOL!

    I wonder if a market exists for ‘Alt-Hollywood’? And is such a product possible?

  7. An unfortunate staple of HBO original programming is the gratuitous sex that plagues every series, and more specifically the interracial and or gay sex. Good shows were trashed with the inevitable gay angle and accompanying gay sex:
    Sopranos: the Vito/Jonny-Cakes sub plot. Meadow Sopranos loses her virginity to a half black, half Jew who is so awesome in his mulatto power that he gives Tony Soprano panic attacks.
    Rome: The Servilla/Octavia plot, plus lots of other gay sex and innuendo amongst minor characters. Interracial sex is not full on S-SA on white woman, but there is Jew on White and White on Egyptian. There is also the incest between Octavian and Octavia, as well as the implication that man-boy love is an acceptable sub-culture.
    The Wire: The whole, tiresome black lesbian cop character development. That character was also possibly the most insufferable Mary Sue of all time. Also has the gay angle with other minor characters. Lots of interracial black man on white woman porn.
    GoT: Has it all: Gay, lesbian, interracial, midget, and even a long term incestuous love affair, complete with gratuitous sex scenes. The few sex scenes actually described in the books are brief and mostly awkward, which makes HBO’s interpretation of them even more annoying.

  8. A recent Frontpage article mirrors Z’s thoughts here. The public is growing tired of “the moral preening…of barking carnies.”

    The Left achieved their Eschaton.
    A black man was elected President!
    When the magic didn’t happen, they hoped a Womyn would finalize the immanentization.
    After Her, next would’ve been a tranny.
    Or a Muslim. Probably both- except O had that somewhat covered.

    So this was the culmination of a century’s schemes? The End of History as we know it?

    Their religion is already dead.
    Nobody is listening to the Hollywood sermons anymore.

    • To steal from (I believe) Kurt Schlichter, who called the Left the “Scolditariat”. Our culture is loaded with “Scolditarians”, and we all know who they are. Our latest former president was the biggest Scolditarian of all.

  9. Here’s where the conservatives with media savvy — all six of them — could score a major coup. Barriers to entry are pretty low now, and so long as you don’t call the conservative channel The Conservative Channel ™, you could make a killing with a Netflix-type service with original shows that aren’t deviance on parade. Even a remake of “Married with Children” would clean up, provided, again, you don’t emphasize that this is Conservo-TV.

    • The Hallmark Cannel (all of those old chaste romance chick flicks and family coming home for Christmas Dinner movies) is one of the most watched channels on cable.

  10. Save yourself from watching the new Star Trek series that just came out on Crackle or one of the alternate streaming apps. As a lifelong star trek fan I gave it a shot and just about threw up after watching 20 minutes of it. All the leadership is female, all the crew members are either gay or alien, and the dialog is so obviously written by 20 year old girls that is impossible to watch. I will be interested to hear about anyone else’s reaction to that apparent steaming pile.

    • In twenty years, after the Millenials have carried out their hair-raising revenge on their SJW inquisitors, Lesbian Star Trek will outrank ‘Plan 9 From Outer Space’ for sheer stupidic camp. And to think, we laughed at the Victorians.

  11. If anyone here is interested in a laugh out loud parody of “true crime” shows, check out American Vandal on Netflix. The crime being documented? Someone spray painted dicks on 27 teachers’ cars! Absolutely note perfect.

  12. If you liked any of the older Star Trek shows I’d recommend The Orville. It’s basically the same things, just with jokes instead of technobabble.

  13. I read the report at the 4th link. Wow just wow. It’s hard to believe companies can shrug off losses like that. Too much of the same thing for too long. There is only so much eye candy humans can endure. Grandioseness and spectacle are falling out of favor. More cat videos and videogame supplementation I suppose. Someone needs to make the ‘Catch Hillary’ vg. Its a jail simulator game. Two thugs throw her in the slammer.

  14. Hollywood is definitely on its way out, but this is a golden age for television. Granted, network television is awful and caters solely to the lowest common denominator these days.

    But HBO, cable television series (e.g. Mad Men), and streaming series (e.g., Netflix series like 13 reasons why) are having quite a heyday. Sure, not “everyone” watches them like the old sitcoms of network TV, but the quality of the shows had never been (on average) higher.

    • If you thought “Mad Men” was good, I suppose that it is a golden age of TV. I can remember the tail end of that era, and the show made me want to break things. At best, it was Retro-Pron for Millennials, allowing them to enjoy the superior style, functional sex roles, and higher culture of that era while at the same time feeling superior to it. That kind of condescending crap drives me insane. But, to each his own…

      • Lots of people liked Mad Men because they thought the culture depicted was superior to contemporary America. No sneering involved. I actually think Mad Men was a minor red pill for lots of young white folk.

        At any rate, it was an entertaining show separate and apart from the nostalgia aspect. Besides the Twilight Zone (original series), I’m not sure I’ve ever seen an “old” TV show that had good acting, sophisticated writing, non-predictable storylines, etc. Plenty of great old movies out there, but TV shows used to be mostly horrible. Don’t let nostalgia for your youth cloud your aesthetic judgement.

        • Well, if “Mad Men” did serve as a red pill for some people, I suppose that it accomplished some good. I still hated it. Anyway, the tastes of generations differ, and probably nowhere more than in entertainment. Most younger people think that older TV shows have bad acting. Most people my age (50’s) don’t think that modern “actors” act at all. I didn’t think that Bob Hope was very funny. My Dad never found one single thing funny about “Monty Python”. I agree with you, older people always have to be on guard with regard to nostalgia for youth. But younger people also have to not simply equate different tastes with “bad”.

          And, by the way, I thought “Twilight Zone” was terrible. So maybe we just don’t like the same stuff…

          • 100 thumbs up for Perry Mason! We watched the entire series, one episode a night for several months. It was terrific. Lots of good acting – many of the actors I recognized from later TV and others from movies. Some seasons were better than others – I think I noticed them getting into a “least likely suspect” rut at one point, where the murderer would turn out to be some guy who passed by on the sidewalk and had one line – but mostly it was great entertainment.

            And Colombo never disappoints, at least the original series.

          • I do like Perry Mason, forgot about that one. And I haven’t seen much Colombo, but I’ll admit that show seems pretty good too.

            Probably true about generational tastes (especially humor). But I love lots of old movies. Perhaps movies are more timeless and TV is more “of the moment.”

  15. I stopped going to the movies 30 years ago because they became too vulgar and obscene, pushing destructive social values. Now, judging from the TV ads the movies all look like CG video games. I stopped watching televised sports about the same time. Just lost interest. I watch some TV, mostly reruns of The Andy Griffith Show, and a few History Channel shows; that’s it. The values of the cultural elites are simply st odds with mine.

  16. Felt the same way about Rome. There was some good stuff in it, but too much soap opera crap to keep me watching. All the soap opera stories had an overwhelming Current Year vibe to them, which was doubly annoying. It made the suspension of disbelief impossible to maintain.

  17. I really liked Rome. The story was exactly as you describe, but I found it reassuring. None of the women in the series had official positions. They were all on the fringe or in the home of a powerful man. The men’s power came from their position and influence as arbiters of force. The women on the other hand wielded a purely informal form of power. They could manipulate, or berate, or cajole their men into doing things, but they could do none themselves.

    “Woe unto Rufus Tranquillus.” is a truly great line.

    This I think is closer to the natural male-female model. Women never had ‘no power’ as the Feminists say. All things considered, I believe they probably had more power when they focused on their strengths instead of trying to be low quality men. The women in the Rome series certainly seemed to do that to me.

    This is why I’ve been saying for years that Feminism is really a war waged by ugly women on attractive ones, and the damage done to men in the process is all just collateral damage. The ugly girls have somehow convinced attractive women to give up their power based on their strengths in exchange for being ‘just like men’ where even the highest quality woman is a small, weak, excessively risk averse substitute, and the ugly women are no worse off. They’re all equally low quality men after all.

    • If you go back and look at the bulk of the so called “second wave” feminists, they were mostly Jewish and frequently lesbians. The ugly part goes without saying.
      So a bunch of over credentialed, castrating Jewish shrews, many of them lesbians, made war on normal, Western male/female relations.
      Their cohorts in media gave them a platform, and before you know it, the West is crumbling.
      They won with barely a fight.

    • If you really read some serious hard core feminist literature – you wouldn’t think that men were not the true targets. In college three decades ago – I spent serious time in the library stacks tracking down articles by feminists like Andrea Dworkin and her ilk. Make no mistake – the hard core feminists truly hated men. If anything I would say that the feminism espoused by these women was more an effort to get the good looking women away from the men – so they could have them for themselves. Pretty much every single prominent woman in the feminist movement that I’ve ever researched – is/was – a lesbian.

      Unlike gay men who seem to love women – lesbians typically from what I’ve seen , have little to no use for men. Perhaps because they see them as competition for the hot chicks.

      I have thought the same thing that you posted a few times in the past: that feminism is a war of ugly women against the good looking ones, but reading thru their literature was enough to dispel that thought. Go read some of these women – and you will find they are very seriously delusional about how the world really works.

      • In my experience, feminists hate everyone, men, women, and especially themselves. I figure there is cosmic justice in having to live 24/7 with people who disgust you.

  18. “On the other hand, the apparent crappiness of television shows could simply be a part of the general crappiness of the mass media culture.”

    The problem in the media is that they had an audience back in the day but didn’t like who they were and drove them off. The mostly male audience who loved stuff like Rockford Files or A-Team (and can still watch it online or in reruns) have decamped for greener pastures and TV scavenges among what is a niche audience of older women.

    “The sexual harassment hysteria gripping both Hollywood and the news entertainment rackets suggest the cat ladies are staging a final takeover.”

    Hollywood has been shifting over for the last 20 years; looking back you can even pick out the approximate time it happened, around 1997/8 or so. That’s when Will and Grace hit the air. In retrospect that looks like the moment that the shift over hit from the last of the old generation that was still used to dealing with large audiences to the people who’ve run bad subliminal propaganda to an aging and shrinking audience ever since. Remember television even in the early 90s? You mentioned Seinfeld and the Simpsons but remember Married with Children or Perfect Strangers? Anyone think anything like that could ever make it on screen today?

    “The collapse of Hollywood may be a sign of it. Movies and TV are artifacts of the last century. ”

    I want to say that if you build it, people will come, that there is an audience out there but not for what they are selling but I’m not so sure anymore. If you’d told young me that I’d live through an age of superhero movies and not be interested in even watching it bootleg, I wouldn’t have believed it. Five Transformers movies, ten X-Men movies, fricking Batman versus Superman and I wouldn’t give a damn… I just wouldn’t have believed it. Remember “The Incredible Hulk Returns” back in the late 80s? I watched the hell out of that but can’t be moved to check out Thor: Rangnarok.

    • “The problem in the media is that they had an audience back in the day but didn’t like who they were and drove them off”

      Astonishingly enough, this is true…

  19. The odd thing about pop culture references to TV shows is that none of us “get” them (or even notice them) since we never watch the shows. Apparently the word “Shame!” (a catchword shouted by SJWs and Antifa) has something to do with Game of Thrones.

    • Yes “Shame!” probably comes from Game of Thrones. Since it seems nobody here has watched it – one of the plot lines in the series is that there is a religious order in the capital city – that even has the power to bring down the leaders. When a person violates their moral code – they are paraded thru the streets of the city – naked – and the citizens get to pelt them with rotten vegetables and various body fluids. The person escorting the offender thru those streets is a woman of the religious order – who constantly says “Shame! Shame!” on a regular cadence.

      So yeah – if the Antifah / SJW crowd is yelling shame – that’s likely where they’re getting it from. Which is interesting because it shows you where their heads are at. They probably think they’re playing out some modern version of Dungeons and Dragons.

      • “So yeah – if the Antifah / SJW crowd is yelling shame – that’s likely where they’re getting it from. Which is interesting because it shows you where their heads are at. They probably think they’re playing out some modern version of Dungeons and Dragons.”

        Awesome. I prefer reality-based weapons and organization. AntiFa exists because we haven’t rounded them up for sedition, yet. Protests with masks and violence should be met with precision fire and the bullhorn. Hold a spray can, get a free bullet.

    • “It is known” is another one from GoT that I see used in comments. It was used in the series by the Dothraki slaves assigned to Dany. She would ask about something, only to be told, “It is known.” Though when I see it in comments, it is usually used in jest.

  20. I did a calculation on my blog years ago about when TV tipped to majority female hours — I came up with about 1979 IIRC. The methodology was simplistic, perhaps but easily replicable and adjustable. Go to Wikipedia and look up each Fall TV premiere season. This was the networks’s best guess about what shows would succeed. Total up the hours each night that were male skewing and what were female skewing. Total up the week.

    This female skewing started in 1968 with the Rural Massacre of CBS’s rural themed shows, rated #1 or so, but with bad, rural demographics. This was the birth of the Brandon Tartikoff strategy that Tartikoff employed in the 1980s at NBC: low rated but critically acclaimed shows like St. Elsewhere, Hill Street Blues, and Seinfeld (debuted 1989) kept alive because of demos and ad rates.

    Moreover TV production has kept Hollywood alive, the FT in the LEX estimated that half of studio profits come from TV revenue, and of that revenue more than 60% is foreign revenue, which is a weakness.

    Most nations are highly protectionist about TV and movies, preferring at best to license the property and make their own shows like how Britain’s Steptoe and Son became Sanford and Son with Red Foxx. Hollywood cannot continue to bet on this …

    Or the cable revolution that is coming to an end. If Hollywood can be divided into the Golden Age (30s-40s), TV Age (50s-80s) where TV revenue at least supported Hollywood during the nadir of the late 1960s to Star Wars and Jaws profitability; and HBO Age (90s-2014) its different now. As late as 2014 CBS reported half of profits came from cable/satellite licensing. Now the streaming players are radically altering the landscape.

    Bloomberg had a story on how Hollywood can’t deal with Apple. Studios are getting “edgy” sex-violence fare with Casey Affleck rejected by Apple, because Apple wants globally acceptable fare that parents won’t freak out on seeing in a Apple Store or on their kids Iphone. Literally no one in Hollywood seems able to do this anymore. I’ve seen the Netflix Daredevil and Defenders series, both were excellent, the former a TV version of Serpico with minor super-powers, the latter like the Magnificent Seven only in urban NYC with minor super powers. While the sex and violence were never going to fly with Apple; I was struck by how MALE both shows were.

    If the model is modest amounts of subscription based streaming series, that is going to bankrupt most Hollywood studios and shift production to the lower cost places on the fringes of the Anglosphere: Canada, New Zealand, Australia; and remake Entertainment from insider affliction Oscar Bait (according to Steven Fincher of Seven fame) and superhero tent pole to as broadly addictive as possible. More Dickens (the first superstar serializer) than Harvey Weinstein.

  21. We just binge watched Doc Martin. It’s a good show. I had to work to convince my husband to drop Directv. Now that we’ve been without it for most of the year, he’s adjusted well. We subscribe to Hulu, CBS and Netflix (although I will likely dump Netflix again.) We have an OTA antenna. There’s plenty of stuff to watch, without paying $60 a month for the privilege.

  22. The problem with “Piece of Cake” was that it was written in the 1980’s about the 1940’s. Go to the period pieces, “Casablanca” is cheesy, and “The Best Years of Our Lives” is preachy, but they have a certain authenticity because they were made in period. There are any number of lesser WW2 fighter pilot movies made during the war to choose from, all rather propagandistic. “Flying Tigers” with John Wayne is ridiculous, but it is an artifact of the era. These movies tell the story of the day, not colored by more modern influences, or the conceit of telling a story after the resolution is known. Heck, for a late century interpretation of WW2, just watch the original Star Wars.

    I enjoy “I Claudius” as a good Roman soap opera. Since you aren’t going to get a period video, go with what you like. The TV series was better than the book, IMHO. The production is interesting, in that It is minimal and uses stage techniques with almost no visual effects whatsoever. The story itself carries the viewer, not all the other stuff.

  23. Hollywood has long been sending the perception of danger to the world. When we visited friends in South Africa they were surprised we didn’t live like they do (in gated neighborhoods, behind layers of fences, guard/attack dogs) because HOLLYWOOD tells them living in America is far more dangerous.

  24. I believe there is a more fundamental problem. In the past, quite often the people writing, directing, producing these things had at least some knowledge of the world. That isn’t the case today. Not too long ago if one wanted to learn something one went to the library. Then you would find the index files, write down the Dewey Decimal number, then hopefully find the book on a shelf. You may find the information you were looking for or you may not. However, you probably learned something else along the way. Today if you need an answer out comes the smart phone to find the answer. The result is we have ready access to more information than at any time in history and some of the dumbest people around. There is a great deal of the Dunning-Kruger effect going on.

  25. I forgot who said, ” History doesn’t repeat itself, but, it rhymes”. Bread/Popcorn, Circuses/Movies, Caesar stabbed in back/ Trump v. GOP. Seems movies today are too far fetched to begin to believe. I used to see advertised -120lb girls throwing around 240lb men and ninjas flipping over elm trees etc. Now it’s black women got us to the moon and Zombies, Alien v Satan, but todays’ graphics would”ve been spectacular 25 yrs ago. On the cultural reference- I heard one – thought it was funny: Big Bang Theory- 1 genius nerd tells another that is annoying him in a non-manly way, ” If you say another thing, I’m going to kick you in the ovaries”. My nephew said that was ripped off from a movie American Pie. So, what do I know? I have b+w Gunsmokes on dvd, so I’m good for entertainment.

  26. Data — very few of the 200 or so “students” that I “teach” every semester ever see movies or TV shows. Nor do they watch Youtube videos. When I ask them what they do with their free time they don’t remember. I see them scrolling down on their phones a lot, clicking on items, in the lounges or when they’re standing around in groups outside of doorways. These are working-class and sub-working-class NYC kids.

    • In my fairly extensive experience with college “students” (oh yeah, we need the quotation marks), they don’t have the attention span to make it through an entire network tv episode. As the years have gone by, I’ve had to modify my lecture style to the point where my most common phrase is “now, you’ll recall that we said…..” Otherwise they don’t remember what I told them 10 minutes ago, even though they’re apparently writing down every word I say.

  27. Couldn’t happen to a nicer group of people. There used to be this network called “ABC Family” which featured pregnant gay tweenagers and teenagers engaged in soft core child porn. They changed their name to “Free Form” because, well, the whole premise of the network is about as anti-family as you can get, and their hypocrisy has its limits I guess.

    Z, I don’t know if you read to the very end of that Hollywood Reporter link, but there’s this little ditty:

    “PS Here’s an irony: The Weinstein Company’s “Wind River” is at $33 million. It cost around $15 million. Taylor Sheridan’s directing debut might have been an awards contender if certain things hadn’t happened.”

    You know things are bad when they troll out the old, “Well, our movie woulda made a fortune if our producer wasn’t a rapist shitbag” excuse.

    • The story behind ABC Family is that it is a continuation of CBN, the old Pat Robertson Christian Broadcast Network. Part of the contract of the original sale of the channel was that they had to keep the channel family oriented and they had to air The 700 Club.

      They’ve tried over and over to buy out that provision from Robertson, and he’s continued to demand “astronomical” amounts for them to buy him out. He negotiated an iron clad contract from them, and you know it is like ashes in their mouth every time 700 Club airs on their channel.

  28. It just goes to show, if you too openly display contempt for your audience, they will eventually catch on and quit watching. This was something that the old Hollywood/TV industry knew, but that this generation arrogantly forgot.

    For example, Johnny Carson was pretty much a stereotypical moderate liberal of his time, but his ironclad rule for the “Tonite Show” was “No serious politics!”, because he knew that that was not what his middle-American audience wanted to watch. Yeah, sure, make a joke about Nixon or Ford, but follow it up with one about Teddy Kennedy or George McGovern. Ditto old crime dramas like “Columbo”. Yeah, sure, the deep subtext was about a clever Jew jailing the goys, but make the detective Italian (Peter Falk did such a good job with this, a lot of people still think that he was Italian) and make the villains snotty upscale WASPS, often as not “Limousine Liberals” of the kind working class whites loved to hate. Even a preachy piece of leftist agitprop like “All in the Family” had to make concessions. Yeah Archie was wrong, but not evil. He was lovable, and sometimes they even let him win an argument. They had to, if they wanted to keep their audience.

    Of course, Hollywood and the TV Industry have forgotten all this. They, and the NFL, are about to relearn a few things…

  29. I thought Rome was a pretty good actually. The attention to the little details of everyday life were very well done. If you didn’t follow the “when in Rome” notes you’d miss a lot very interesting references. But you would have to own the DVDs in order to have access to that feature.

    If you like historical fiction, try “Piece of Cake” based on the book by the same name (circa 1988) about a RAF squadron at the start of the war. Very well done, with a believable cast and story line.

    To be honest, German television isn’t much better, but at least our documentaries are. I’ve turned of more than one narcissistic BBC commentator who spends more time on camera than the subject being discussed. The only one I give an allowance to is David Attenborough. The rest are just idiots who generally haven’t a clue about what they are talking about.

    German documentaries provide excellent cinematography with only the voice of the narrator. Here are two that will give you a wonder view of the beauty of Germany.

    “Doku _ Der Rhein – Von der Quelle bis zur Mündung”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7cWkeN3eVA

    Deutschland von oben (Germany from above)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kz49S4Izm2o

    • Karl! Finally got parole, eh 😛

      One time, while in the UK, I was watching an episode of Bonanza…dubbed in German: “Hoss!! Mach schnell!!”

    • I did not like the whole Atia versus Servilia story. They spent way too much time on that at the expense of Octavian, who is one of history’s most interesting characters. The guy who played Antony was good. They could have scrapped all the sex scenes. They went on too long and added nothing.

      You are so right about the turn in BBC documentaries. Most today are 90% talking airhead and 10% content. Of course, American documentaries are 90% historical re-enactment and 10% content.

        • @ Karl – if you really want a laugh, watch any John Wayne western movie in German. Nothing quite as funny as when he rides up to the Chief and says “Wie gehts?” instead of “How?” 🙂

          Wie gehts literally translates to “how are you” or “how goes it”.

        • Loved Rome. Loved. It.
          Lucius Vorenus, a true badass, son of Dis! Hapless Pollo!

          The kid Octavian in the first season was a natural. Excellent.
          The wooden board who replaced him as an older Octavian in the second season was such a disappointment.

          Anybody know whatever happened with the first one?

          • Let’s be fair, Pullo was only hapless when he was unarmed. He had a talent, that could of only been appreciated on the battlefield or the arena. He was the kind of man that paved the way for civilizations, but wasn’t himself civilized.

      • My husband and I also watched Rome about 2 months ago. I agree with your assessment. Too many silly sex scenes, with the typical modern schizophrenia that comes with sex: on the one hand, it’s the MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER!!! Capable of changing history, the driving force behind kings and conquerors. And on the other hand, it’s just good clean fun, and only prudes and hypocrites like Calpurnia and Octavian would make a fuss about it.

        I thought the first season was the best, showing Pompey as a too-clever-by-half politician getting himself tangled into a genuine war with Caesar. It was a man’s world, and until Atia and Servilia were elevated into grand string-pullers, it was quite believable.

        I was glad it ended when it did. I don’t think the writers had the talent to do a good job of a third season. Following the adventures of Pullo and his son somewhere in the provinces would have been interesting. And I suspect Vorenus could have been brought back somehow: we never actually SAW him die, just heard Pullo tell Octavian that he was dead. On the other hand, we probably wouldn’t be able to have him without his sullen, trashy daughter, and that would be a deal-breaker for me. And the biggest giveaway was that the final scene ended with a long close-up on Atia’s face. I guess after all that, SHE was supposed to be our hero? Lame.

        • Yeah, they were wise to cut them off at two seasons. Better writers could have stretched the material into three seasons, but that’s about it. Genius is knowing when to stop.

        • @ Dr. Mabuse – Agreed. Rome ended well. Frankly the younger characters who remained, were not all that interesting. Pullo, without Vorenus, was lost. Atia without Mark Anthony, was just a sad woman without friends or enemies. Still, I have to give it good marks. Anyway you look at it, it’s heads and shoulders above Game of Thrones, which is nothing more than a porn slasher movie and disgusting on so many levels.

          Back to the Hollywood comment, there are lots of really good movies coming out of the rest of the world. South African movies like “District 9” and “Chappie” were excellent Sci-Fi movies despite unknown actors and tiny budgets. The Chinese have done some wonderful movies such as “Hero”. Even “Das Boot” is truly a war classic.

          The American dominance of movie making may well be on decline, especially as writing is limited to those with ideas and story lines tightly linked to left-leaning social agendas.

          • You’ve probably never heard of SCTV, but it was a brilliant Canadian comedy program from the late 1970s. They did many parodies of famous movies, but the one they did of “Das Boot” is very memorable. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-CWJoLzHLY&t=96s

            A big part of the joke is the terrible English dubbing; they would always use voices that were just wrong for the character, and the English was often stilted. Other shows made fun of this too; I remember a Carol Burnett sketch where an obviously sexy scene between a hooker and her rival suitors was sanitized through dubbing into a scene between a brother and sister, while the jilted boyfriend’s swearing and threatening gestures are translated into “I feel so happy, I could sing! Ice cream for everyone!”

          • “Hey LaRue! How come everytime we do something for you we wind up getting hosed, eh?”

            I loved “Play it Again Bob” and “The Man Who Would Be King of the Popes.”

          • They did so many fantastic movie parodies! “The Man Who Would Be King of the Popes” is one of my favourites too. Joe Flaherty said that he didn’t really have Peter O’Toole’s voice down right, but I thought he got his body language down perfectly! The goggling eyes, and the sort of lunging walk.

            In the same vein (with the same trio of Richard Burton, Peter O’Toole and Richard Harris) was “How the Middle East Was Won”. It was a parody of “Lawrence of Arabia” with “The Wind and the Lion” mixed in. Flaherty delivered a great version of Lawrence’s speech: “Mufti! So long as Arab fights Arab, tribe against tribe, so shall you remain a little people. A silly people, greedy, barbarous and cruel. You shall remain a foolish people, with foolish ways. A stupid and repugnant people. A people with big noses and bad sanitary habits. You shall remain a ridiculous people, a people–” “Awright, lighten up! Yer talkin’ to the bluidy Mufti of all the Arabs!”

        • Your first paragraph about modern sexual schizophrenia — on the one hand the most important thing ever, on the other hand just good, clean fun — is very interesting.

    • Karl Horst (more than one Karl here), have you seen the original “Game, Set, Match” miniseries of the ‘80s, or read the Len Deighton trilogy? I thought it was a very good interpretation of ‘80s Cold War spycraft. But I am not German.

  30. My work schedule for over the past fifteen years has fortunately left me with little time for television. In fact, when the over the air frequencies went digital the government did my “cord” cutting for me. The only time I watch any television is when I travel and stay in a hotel. Having grown up on the classics it is something of a shock to the system to see what they call entertainment today. It really shows that the people making this stuff have no clue of what is outside of their bubble.

    • The TV stuff back in the day, any day you choose, was mostly really bad as well. Different influences and messages than today, but most of radio and TV programming has always been dreck. We remember the “good” stuff, but that good stuff was a very small portion of hours and hours of airtime to fill.

      • Dutch,
        I agree that most of it was garbage, but some of it wasn’t, and even the out and out prole-swill didn’t deliberately show contempt for the audience and their values, the way TV shows do now. I have no doubt that a lot of people felt such contempt, behind the scenes, but they either couldn’t or didn’t display it. The mask has dropped now. It used to be, bad TV was just bad. Now, it’s deliberately offensive. It’s the difference between a guy who accidently steps on your toe because he’s stupid/careless, and a guy deliberately stamping on your foot, while screaming “Die, white man, Die!”

      • You’re absolutely right. Go back and watch those comedy skits on Red Skelton or Jackie Gleason. Boring.

      • It mostly stunk, but there was a fundamental undertone of decency that pervaded everything. Well that had to go, of course.

  31. I was talking to a friend on why no watches or even has cable tv, let alone the main networks. We agreed men aren’t there audience anymore and we don’t buy their advertised crap. Blacks and women, the rest, go away.

    I fill idle time with youtube, last night on soldering skills I intend to develop.

    A decent book I have from a while back was Gilligan Unbound examining pop culture through the perspective of 60s then 90s programs. Of course it was the authors unasserted contention that there was a culture. Even he couldn’t write the book now about present day.

    Need more Marvel and DC comic inspired entertainment is the answer.

  32. Have to disagree with you on Rome. It is by John Milius (I will let you look up his credits) who is anything but a cat lady. Fantastic production values, and lots of interesting characters outside of the Roman nobility. The two main characters are based on actual persons, mentioned in Julius Caesar”s writings. I suspect you only watched part of one episode, so maybe give it another chance.

        • No he’s right it was certainly soap-operaish. I actually think of Rome as the prototype for Game of Thrones. It had politics, violence, romance, and sex. Something for everyone. I do wonder what it would have been like if the focus had been solely on Lucius Vorenus, Titus Pullo and the XIII.
          .

          • Vox Day has written a fantasy series which he intends at least in part as an unpozzed answer to George RR Martin’s series that features a civilization based on Rome.

            He was giving away the first two volumes for a little while, so I read them. It’s not too bad.

          • I think what the show runners did with Rome was try to appeal to both sexes. I watched it because I’m a history geek and liked the soldier buddy story of Vorenus and Pullo. I lost interest in the soap opera female story lines but understood why they were written in.

            I was more upset with the awkward historical fast-forward in the last season.

      • While not necessarily disagreeing, Z, I did like Rome, especially, as Karl metions, the characters of Pullo and Vorenus. It did seem unlikely that Octavian and Pullo would have had that sort of relationship, but I enjoyed it just the same, feminine intrigue and all. I wonder, Z, did you read Colleen McCullough’s Masters of Rome series, and if so what did you think of it?

        • I did not say I hated it. I just could have done with out the pointless cat fights and the ridiculous sex scenes. That last bit has become a bugaboo with me of late. We are awash in porn. There is no need to show us ten minutes of the couple getting busy. It’s pointless vulgarity. I’m no pride, but we live in an age of unlimited porn on demand. The only reason to show Octavian banging his wife was so the degenerates making the show could film it.

          • In the first season, I think it was his sister that Octavian banged 🙂 All the sex was gratuitous in the sense the story did not require it — but it was pretty accurate historically. Keeping in mind characters such as Caligula and Nero.

            Fellini’s Satyricon is a very trippy take on life in Rome, for those so interested.

          • We are indeed awash in porn, and yet no one notices. Who cares that you see two actors dry humping each other, when you can watch real porn, and Hollywood simply can’t process it. Instead they try to up the ante trying to out porn pornhub. It’s a strange kind of car crash to watch.

          • Women watch way more T.V than men so even a hard core right winger like Millius (Conan, Red Dawn etc) is going to have to cater a bit to that audience

      • The best scene in the series is when Mark Antony goes to visit Brutus after the assassination. That was riveting.

        • Nope – Thirteen!!!

          You can insult the old soldier but you better not insult his unit. I was shaking during that scene.

      • Vorenus was smoking hot (he was the redhead right?) but the violence and the sex really turned me off.

        It was definitely too soap opera for my liking and when it ended, I was not sorry.

        I rarely give shows a chance these days. Most are just plain garbage.

    • It’s one of my favorite shows, too. Especially Season One.
      The problem is that they got cancelled after Season One & had to cram their five planned seasons into one.

  33. Is this the modern version of Helena Handbasket’s “Without men, we’d still be living in caves, but with really fancy curtains!”

    I call soap operas Stone Age Wisdom.
    First she has a child with this one, then with that one, everybody living in a long house (today, a mansion with it’s own name attached to a magazine publishing business).

    The survival of the tribe is paramount- everyone is related, and the stories never end.

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