The 4-Color Process: Controversial Batgirl 41 Cover

Comic artist Rafael Albuquerque created a BATGIRL variant comic cover for issue 41 of the DC Comics‘ series. Said cover, when previewed for pre-orders, stirred up a maelstrom of controversy; social media was raisin’ hell… as they say.

Batgirl #41 Joker varient © 2015 DC Comics
Batgirl #41 Joker varient © 2015 DC Comics

The comic book cover in question is part of the 75th anniversary of the Joker (is he really that old). Its imagery is perhaps sexualized and it most certainly hints at violence toward Batgirl (the blood smeared Joker smile… that’s a deliciously sadistic touch). Thus, in the eyes of hectoring feminists it is celebrating, if not outright championing, violence toward women.

Which, of course, it’s not.

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1982 Cannes Interviews with Fassbinder and Herzog

The quest for individual cinema… R.W. Fassbinder and Werner Herzog discuss the future of cinema… from back in 1982!

These two argue that TV is a great threat to cinema and its ability to express ideas [visually], and that cinema exists when it’s designed and created by an individual who has a singular vision/voice… which is the complete antithesis of TV — regardless of current rise of the showrunner — outside of a few projects like TRUE DETECTIVE and arguably THE KNICK, TV is storytelling by committee… and it always will be, yet this doesn’t diminish one’s enjoyment of it… only that it requires different consideration than the cinema… which in Europe can stretch out to four and five hours (notable more recently CARLOS, 2010 and BEST OF YOUTH, 2003).

For instance, when TV is called “cinematic” it’s a sign of elevated quality and execution, whereas to call cinema akin to TV totally denigrates it…. which is odd. However, it’s more about what one wants out of each medium — TV rarely approach the visual dynamics and scope of film, even the production budgets get equalized (i.e. low budget filmmaking can run the same amount of money of a typical episode of TV; around $3m. Whereas even the most lavish shows… GAME OF THRONES comes to mind can even touch the budget and visual artistry of something like PROMETHEUS — not commenting on story merits).

Film marshals certain resources and demands a certain level of concentration (by the audience) to reach the heights of the new “temples” that we’ve bestowed upon it.

That is what Fassbinder and Herzog allude to… its unparalleled dynamic nature to pierce the soul… screen size has a lot to do with, and the captured audience notion as well.

It’s too bad that Fassbinder isn’t still alive (as he perhaps could be) to see where cinema has evolved.