Contributing writer for The Artifice.

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    Latest Topics


    Journalism's "Conflict of Interest"

    For the FT journalists and freelancers out there, what actually IS a conflict of interest and why are reporters and professors of journalists so opposed to it? If you’re passionate about anime clubs in schools or city-wide clean-up days, for example, and no one else in the newsroom is, should you write about one of those passions, or pass it off to someone else because of a so-called "bias"? What’s a journalist to do?

    • Investigative journalism does appear to becoming a lost art. The good news is since we have YouTube anyone can make the news or become the news. Case in point was the Principal's wife who returned a call to a high school students who complained when the school was closed down for a day. The students posted her tirade on YouTube and in this way created his own news, much to the chagrin of the Principal's wife who was quite insulting in her venting. – Munjeera 8 years ago
    • Journalism has always fascinated me, however there are some topics revolving around it that I haven't seen disected and discussed like "has journalism passed its peak?", "why is it becoming harder and harder to put your foot in the door be successful and be able to make a living at it?" And "why are prospective students being discouraged from following their passion for journalism?" – nnader 8 years ago

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    Latest Comments

    I honestly had never thought about OUAT’s villainous women that way, so kudos for bringing new thoughts to the table. However, I think the point you made about many of the “evil” women being queens is a little off-base — mostly because, if they didn’t hold some position of power, they wouldn’t be important enough to the story to be in the show. Who cares if a peasant is evil? They have no way to wield their power over enough people for “heroes” to take notice. UNLESS they have magic. Having dark magic, though, effectively means said peasant will come into a position of power. Evil seeks power naturally, even if not purposefully, because being evil means you have people countering you all the time, and to continue in your ways (i.e. survive), evil has to counter back. Dominance necessarily leads to power.
    But you do have a point about the high percentage of female villains — it’s almost like the writers were so scared to be too “traditional” that they went overboard being non-traditional.

    Once Upon a Time and the Villainization of Women

    Great article/analysis. I was a pretty big fan of Once Upon A Time when it started, and have stubbornly stuck with the show. LOVE what you said re: couples: “Television shows seem to have an aversion to couples being happy. It comes from the, frankly ridiculous, notion that a happily married couple has nowhere to go in the narrative aside from babies, babies, babies.”
    Flanderisation is also relatable to Once.
    Wish we could have the writers of all these TV shows that were at one time great take our complaints to heart!

    4 Ways a Show Can Lose Viewership: Good Luck, New Girl

    I like the article, but I think I like your follow-up even better. I did not know the origin of the word “meme”, so that bit was especially interesting, particularly regarding the fact that its definition is so broad. In your reply to Sam, however, I’m really glad you touched on what TV “used to be” (although it makes me feel kind of old, even as a college student), because I have recently been wishing for the once-a-week kind of experience. I watch a few shows on Netflix and Hulu, and though I haven’t torrented or otherwise illegally downloaded anything personally, I have watched movies “stolen” by friends and have very mixed feelings about it; music, too, BECAUSE of the artists. As an artist in several mediums myself, I shudder to think that at some point artists will cease to be recognized for their art. While I don’t think I could say “television as art is the ultimate goal,” I do recognize the artistic element to all shows, at least at the beginning. The film and TV show industry has an inevitable ability to corrupt, I think, like “regular” politics, but I suppose that’s another issue.

    I also liked what you said about PR: “This is the age where reviews do not necessarily matter, as long as there is extreme love or hate for a television show, it will be watched.” As an aspiring novelist, the idea of reviews functioning in this way kind of scares me, but maybe the two (TV and novels) are not so related. In any case, I think it’s true, and perhaps it’s not such a bad thing. I think stirring up controversy, at times, is good, but I wonder if the moral aspect of this type of review process–“hype” and all that–is something we should reassess as a community of film- and television-watchers.

    The Essential "Meme-ability" of Modern Television

    Great article. Who knew comics and epic poetry could have so much in common! I have read Dante’s Inferno, and I’m not much of a comic book connoisseur, but I can appreciate this sort of comparison (as an English major from a liberal arts college? I guess that’s the reason). I’m curious about a few things though: 1) “The more animalistic our urges the less we can be blamed for them.” Could you flesh this out a bit more? By what (extensive) reasoning can this be true? I just don’t see why it would be an issue of blame, but maybe that’s also because I have a hard time seeing sin on such a relative scale. 2) “Evil is merely an absence or distance from God.” Again, I just want to hear a little more on this. It’s interesting that both narratives (Inferno and Swamp Thing) see evil less as an entity than a metaphysical state. This surprises me especially for the comic, where characters–heroes and villains–tend to be, essentially, the physical embodiment of a a concept or moral trait. At least, that’s what I know about comics. 3) Finally, the discussion on humanity here really interests me, especially with Swamp Thing’s apparent vacillation between embracing his humanity and rejecting it, and the artist/author’s own confusion about it. I wonder if you’ve watched or read about the anime series “Attack on Titan”? I wonder if there are parallels in that “comic” with Swamp Thing in this area.

    Dante and Swamp Thing's Journey Through "Inferno"

    As a Japanese Studies major who has been very reluctant to watch anime in the past (mostly due to all the flack from uninformed classmates that comes with watching it), I figured this article would be a good one for me to read. I’m sorry to say, however, that none of the recommended shows sound like those I would really want to watch, except maybe the last one. While some of the issue might be, as is written above, the fact that many anime series are about high school kids (and I am no longer a high school kid), the “why it’s good” sections turned me off the most. It seemed as if they were largely critiques, rather than promotions. I was even more confused by the recommendations because I really enjoy some of the “similar” movies and TV shows–I love The Devil Wears Prada, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and ESPECIALLY A Swinging Single, which I watched in Japan–but failed to see the similarities between those five shows and my favorites, given the article and the opening sequences. KimiNozomu’s reminded me how anime artists seem to take advantage of nudity just because it’s not “real”, Beck’s animation kind of reminded me of King of the Hill (not a bad show, but not very impressive), I didn’t really understand Nana’s opening as related to the description, and Anohana, again, just seemed a little young (I couldn’t tell about the animation quality from the video–not sure if that’s just my laptop or not).
    For what it’s worth, though, I recently discovered “Attack on Titan” on Netflix, and I really like that, so I’m not giving up on anime completely. As far as J-drama, though, I think I’ll still to A Swinging Single, if I can find it.

    5 Anime Soaps for Skeptics of the Medium