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Music

The Rebel Rockin' Roots of Punk Rock Humor

Humorists have served as the conscience of cultures ever since (and before) court jesters ridiculed omnipotent royalty for its hypocrisy, pomposity, and corruption. Punk continues to fulfill that essential social role in relation to the powers-that-be of the modern world.

Recent
Culture

Can I Say That? Stand-Up Comedy in the Age of Political Correctness

For all the alarmist propaganda about political correctness in the US, insensitive speech is still protected by the First Amendment. The complaints about PC are BS.

Politics

Stand-Up! America’s Dissenting Tradition Part 3: The Bills of Rights, Hicks & Maher

Two sides of the same coin, Bill Hicks and Bill Maher are comedic patriots; leave (their country) they will not, nor will they leave it alone, for they persist at picking at their nation’s open sores of injustice, hypocrisy, and superficiality.

Performing Arts

Stand-Up! America’s Dissenting Tradition Part 2: Transformers George Carlin & Richard Pryor

Whereas Richard Pryor used autobiography for his comedy of social dissent, George Carlin aimed his critical lens outwards, to reflect upon a world of greed and self-delusion.

Performing Arts

Stand-Up! America’s Dissenting Tradition Part 1: Trailblazers Mort Sahl & Lenny Bruce

Mort Sahl and Lenny Bruce were more than just maverick dissenters; they were the founding fathers of what would later coalesce under the umbrella of the “counter-culture”.

Politics

Humor vs. Religion: An Unholy War. Part Two: Dispatches From the Front Lines

For comedians like Ricky Gervais, Bill Maher and others, the non-rational beliefs and behaviors that religion fosters are, from a “material” perspective, manna from heaven.

Politics

Humor vs. Religion: An Unholy War, Part One

Even within the US, where democracy and political openness have fostered a rich tradition of rebellious humor, stains still linger from those periods when “God-is-on-our-side” attitudes swept the nation into a mass hysteria of obedience and fear.

Film

Cars (2006)

Thrilling in its shiny surface detail, the NASCAR scene stretches before you like an anthropomorphized vista: this is the immediate future of animation, and Pixar, recently and loudly sold to Disney, means to own it.

Film

The Aristocrats (2005)

The sheer number of performances wears thin by film's end.

Kevin Wong
Reviews

Bill & Ted's Most Excellent Collection (2005)

Bill and Ted have barely a brain between them and speak in brilliantly realized Surferese: they're that guy you know who still snickers at the double entendres in Van Halen album titles.

John G. Nettles
Reviews

Jersey Girl (2003)

Affleck and Smith talk lots about shooting details and feelings about their chosen fields, their mutual esteem and affection audible.

Cynthia Fuchs
Film

Jersey Girl (2003)

Early in Jersey Girl, Ben Affleck cries. It's a grim and alarming moment.

Cynthia Fuchs
Film

Scary Movie 3 (2003)

Just when you thought the Scary Movie franchise had run out of ideas, here it comes again -- looking like it's run out of ideas.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

George Carlin

Scott Thill
Reviews
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