Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Mean Girls and The Dark Knight

Today, in my AP -AP, mind you - Psychology class, we watched the Tina Fey/Lindsey Lohan movie "Mean Girls." Now, without going into a full-on review of this movie, I can safely say that it was better than I had expected. Witty, funny...not amazing, but fun to watch. Not a horrible film.
However, while watching, I began to notice certain similarities to one of the best movies of the decade: The Dark Knight. Yes. Active parallels between the twain.
I'll try to explain.
The villianess, Regina George, follows a fascinatingly Harvey Dent-esque pattern of control transitioning to anarchy. As the movie starts, she is the leader of "the Plastics," the clique of popular and ruthless girls at the top of the social food chain. This parallels Dent's role as the golden boy, the leader by the favor of the people. The direct foil to Regina's strict rules and social codes is Janis Ian, a social outcast who wants only to see Regina's destruction. Janis, fittingly enough to her name, plays a two-faced parallel: she is part the Batman, the seeker of justice and vengeance both. On the other hand, she is a bit of Joker; her desire to create social anarchy in order to take down Regina is at times frightening.
However, Janis pales in comparison to Cady, Lindsey Lohan's character. Cady enters the school as a formerly-home-schooled student, awkward and looking for friends. She takes on the role of Janis's companion, helping her infiltrate the Plastics and create social anarchy. However, she is the catalyst for the evolution of the characters into their archetypes come the climax. Cady demonstrates something similar to Stockholm Syndrome, in which she becomes like her "captors," the Plastics, and, in time, comes to replace Regina George.
Regina George devolves from the Harvey Dent of the beginning into the Harvey Dent after his accident: essentially insane and bent only on creating anarchy. In this way, Regina begins to resemble the Joker; perhaps the ultimate evolution of Harvey Dent. Taking her place is Cady, whose desire to take down the evil she saw in Regina has only caused her to become Regina; in a way, she is the Harvey Dent to Regina's Joker.

On the side of good, there are similar parallels. Tina Fey's teacher is the Batman of the day. After the climax of the movie, in which Regina spreads anarchy throughout the school, which descends into a massive brawl and riot., Tina Fey is the character who takes order over the girls and demonstrates to them how their fighting was silly, etc. The main idea is that Fey fights the anarchy that threatens her school - or, from a Batman analogy, her city. The principal, in his own way, symbolizes the police in The Dark Knight: while supposedly the voice of reason and justice, he is unable to hold control over the forces of chaos. The baseball bat that he carries symbolizes the brute-force technique for regulation that is so ineffective against so nebulous a threat. Additionally, the cast on his right hand is symbolic of his being crippled literally and metaphorically, unable to hold back the tide. The only true order comes from Tina Fey, who stands out as the true voice of strength.

There are, certainly, other parallels; however, I haven't seen The Dark Knight in a while, and my knowledge is a little rusty. This seems to cover the main points, though.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The hunt was on

When a spider enters your bathroom, how do you kill it?
Perhaps I should give some background.
Sometimes, particularly in the warmer months, when I get out of my shower, there are various creepy-crawleys waiting for me. The worst one was a cricket on the bathmat outside my shower - I stayed under the water for a good extra half-hour. This one today was more intimidating in a different sense. I was going through the post-shower routine (you know the drill: brush teeth, comb hair, put on clothes - not necessarily in that order) when, by the corner of my sink and the mirror, I saw a dark shape. It was roughly as big around as my thumb, not including the legs, which spread out to a fairly great distance. The fuzz covering its back was a dark auburn, with little streaks of what appeared red to me. It sat perfectly still, just waiting.
Now, I'm no animal murderer. No fan of wanton slaughter, me. But when a thing that disagrees with me on my most instinctual levels enters my domain, I must defend my territory.
At first, I merely sprang back and evaluated the situation. It was not aggressive - perhaps it was passive-aggressive - but looked like the kind of spider that screams or jumps or rips or some ghastly natural defense mechanism straight out of my deepest, darkest nightmares. So, like the Singing Sword of Prince Valiant, up came my paper towel roll, sitting near the sink with one lone paper towel hanging limply from it. I raised it and slammed it once - hard! - against the wall. The spider fell to the ground. I lept back and reviewed my situation. The thing was there on the floor, a little nervous now, scuttling a bit. Clearly, I needed to take action fast.
So, I tore open the cabinet beneath the sink quickly and drew the first thing that I found - a quarter-full spray bottle of Tilex. Without hesitation, I released my deadly spray. The thing would have screamed had it had a set of lungs capable of such feats. It scuttled faster, angrier, but hurt; I could almost hear the sizzle against its eyes and the roasting of that auburn fur. It lay in the corner, and I thought it dead.
But spiders are hardy, it seems. It began to slowly, painstakingly work its way up the wall again. Now came my trusty blade once more -snickersnack! - to my rescue. I smashed the foul beast again and again, knocking it first to the floor and then into pieces.
At the end of it all, I was the victor. I felt bold, animalistic - like any creature could have crawled through my window, and I, armed with my cost-efficient bathroom cleaner and nearly-empty paper tower roll, would knock it back with confidence.

So really, internet, how would you deal with the invading arachnid?

Sunday, May 23, 2010


I heard your clarion call from the depths of my computer
And, so crying,
You drew me from my electronic reverie.
I followed the call down the dimly lit
Hallway that led to the kitchen.
The evening was moist,
A long rainy day.

You sat in your box marked
So seductively dressed all in white.
I did my best to resist, i'faith so I did.
But your call was too strong.

"No! Donut! Get thyself behind me, Satan!"
Alas, I was too weak.
All that remained of my crime
Was a trail of powdered sugar
Leading back to my computer

Editor Fodder: The Blog

This here interwebs thing is going to be my outlet for writings that I've done. I'll probably link this with my facebook somehow, actually. It's going to, essentially, be a blend of my thoughts, my poems, my stories, and other things. I suppose. Kind of a nebulous concept for me right now. Definitely more later; I plan on having at least one serial story going on the site, to be updated weekly or every few days, whichever I feel like.