Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

Jeremiah Massengale
Image: Jeremiah Massengale

Jeremiah Massengale is an assistant professor of communication arts at the University of the Cumberlands where he also advises the award-winning college newspaper.


Wednesday, October 17 2012

'Thor' Reconsidered As Both Vital and Dangerous for Marvel Studios

With the end The Mighty Thor, perhaps now's the perfect time to reconsider Kenneth Branagh's critical box office success as a metaphor for the challenges facing the upcoming Thor: God of Thunder.

Tuesday, August 30 2011

The Real Story, But Not All of It

Perhaps more than a long, critical gaze at DC's history, Secret Origins makes the incredibly savvy move of rendering the company's 70-plus years as both heartwarming and resilient.

Tuesday, August 9 2011

The Nouveau Retro of The First Avenger

At first glance, Captain America seems dated. But viewers are quickly reminded that WWII was as much an ideological conflict as a military one. On the battle of ideas, icons matter.


Wednesday, April 8 2015

‘Alexander’ and the Not-So-Terrible Family Comedy

When it comes to family comedies, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is the exact opposite of terrible, horrible, and no good.

Monday, March 9 2015

The Odds Are Ever in Its Favor: ‘Mockingjay - Part 1’

Mockingjay -- Part 1 proves that a stellar cast and some meaningful direction can take a dreary storyline and turn it into the ultimate penultimate film.

Wednesday, January 28 2015

'Legends of the Knight' Is a Little Too Reverent About the Dark Knight

Legends of the Knight takes the cultural impact of Batman seriously by highlighting a few of his biggest fans, even though the hero worship gets a little redundant by its conclusion.

Tuesday, January 6 2015

‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ Is Not Worth a Cowabunga

The new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie will have longtime Turtle fans shouting “No, ninja, no, ninja, no!”, for this reboot is a mindless mess.

Wednesday, December 17 2014

Dwayne Johnson Bulks Up for Nothing in 'Hercules'

One day, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will land a role in a film that’s fitting of his charisma, physique, and on-screen likability, but Hercules is not that film.


Friday, April 13 2012

A Marvelous Collision: "Archie Meets the Punisher"

In 1994, the Punisher and his fixer Micro stormed into Riverdale, believing that such a squeaky-clean town must be hiding its own special breed of hell…

Friday, January 13 2012

Lessons Learned from "ThunderCats: The Return"

2011 saw the reboot of the classic show, ThunderCats, on Cartoon Network. But an earlier ThunderCats reboot, in comics, holds lessons for uncovering good from bad reimaginings.

Thursday, January 5 2012

Last Shot?: FOX Tries Transitioning "The Punisher" from Its Cultural Ghetto

It's only fair to balk at the idea of some changes Criminal Minds producer Ed Bernero has planned for his FOX-optioned pilot of The Punisher. Frank Castle is black-and-white, right? What if the real issue is more complex, and goes to the heart of comics fandom? What if the real issue is, can The Punisher be for everyone?

Monday, August 29 2011

The Political Terror That Flaps in the Night

Darkwing Duck is just a kid's book, right? It can't really be commenting on the political landscape can it? I mean, not really in any kind of meaningful way?

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