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by PopMatters Staff

7 Jul 2009

Death Cab for Cutie recently released a collection of rarities entitled The Open Door and they dropped by Conan O’Brien’s stage last evening to play the first tune off the EP.

by PopMatters Staff

7 Jul 2009

Conor Oberst in his current countryish incarnation played Letterman last night wearing a sombrero and plying the catchy beats of “Spoiled”.

by Zane Austin Grant

7 Jul 2009

Quite a few Marvel superheroes have anger management issues; Hulk’s rage often ruins otherwise sound plans, and Wolverine’s rampaging has to be calculated into any team strategy.  Depression, however, is rarely a vulnerability that dominates a super-powered protagonist’s series of bad decision-making.  It’s almost like Marvel mutants evolved in a way that made them insusceptible to depression. They just skip the listless mornings of lying in bed for hours and go straight for the chaos and lashing out. 

Alias tells the story of Jessica Jones, a minor superhero who experienced a traumatizing event in which she was mostly forgotten by her team and left to the torments of her abductor.  Instead of becoming unrealistically enraged, she retired her costume and became a private investigator.  On top of never really resolving her trauma, Jessica made a career of dealing with people who were being betrayed by someone they trusted, or were trying to dig up dirt on the people who trusted them.  After having slept with Luke Cage, a.k.a. Power Man, she finds she has been set up by a client, who plays upon her emotional distance to frame her for a murder.  In this panel, Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos have placed Jessica in the graffiti-adorned hallway of Luke Cage’s apartment building. The door has just been slammed in her face, and she is, once again, alone. 

That she is closed in by graffiti adds another level of loneliness to her inability to cope with her problems.  In a sense, graffiti is a signifier of alienation.  Surrounded by a dense population, writers throw up their tag names unnoticed or ignored.  The kids write because they are surrounded by a signifying system that has excluded them. They write their tags over and over again to make a place for their names.  The hallway is full of little messages for other writers, and the tags remind us that at some point, probably late some night before, there was foot traffic through this apartment building.  Jessica is surrounded by the names of people who are no longer there and is forced to face the realization that out of desperation, she’s made another bad choice.

by PopMatters Staff

7 Jul 2009

George Strait
Twang
(MCA Nashville)
Releasing: 11 August 2009 (US) /

SONG LIST
01.  Twang - Jim Lauderdale, Kendell Marvel and Jimmy Ritchey
02.  Where Have I Been All My Life - Sherrie Austin, Will Nance and Steve Williams
03.  I Gotta Get to You - Jim Lauderdale, Jimmy Ritchey and Blaine Larsen
04.  Easy As You Go - Steve Bogard and Rick Giles
05.  Living for the Night - George Strait, Bubba Strait and Dean Dillon
06.  Same Kind of Crazy - Delbert McClinton and Gary Nicholson
07.  Out of Sight Out of Mind - George Strait and Bubba Strait
08.  Arkansas Dave - Bubba Strait
09.  The Breath You Take - Dean Dillon, Jessie Jo Dillon and Casey Beathard
10. He’s Got That Something Special - George Strait, Bubba Strait and Dean Dillon
11. Hot Grease and Zydeco - Gordon Bradberry and Tony Ramey
12. Beautiful Day for Goodbye - Doug Johnson and Pat Bunch
13. El Rey - Jose Alfredo Jimenez

by Bill Gibron

7 Jul 2009

It’s been a hectic week here at SE&L, and before we climb the mountain of theatrical reviews coming this week (with Bruno, I Love You Beth Cooper, and The Hurt Locker coming, among others), we are going to take a few days off and regroup. In the meantime, may we suggest revisiting the dozen or so titles we tackled over the last seven days or so. You will probably find something you missed, or might not have known about until now. Look for our return Thursday with a take on Kathryn Bigelow’s magnificent Iraq War thriller. Until then, enjoy!

INDIE SPOTLIGHT

Hungry Years (2009)

DVDS

Mystery Science Theater 3000: Volume XV
Cinemad Almanac 2009 (Short Film Collection)
12 Rounds - Extreme Cut (2009): Blu-ray
Giuseppe Andrews’ Long Row to Hoe
Zabriskie Point (1970)
The Unborn: Unrated (2009)
10,000 AD: Legend of the Black Pearl (2008)
The Midnight Blue Collection: Volumes 6 & 7 - Porn Stars of the ‘80s/‘90s
Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li (2009)
Dragon Hunters (2008)
Pot Zombies (2005)

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