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03/17/2010

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I should be done very soon. don't tell me Bob is bad I cannot deal with it

I got a new computer at work and a new laptop for home. Its not 'taking' my name and email. I have to put it in every time.

That's odd. I just posted and it's gone. In any case. I thought I bought Single Handed because Mac recommended it? Or maybe it was Rob? It was on LODW

He's not bad.

AMDG

The "remembering" of your name etc takes place in your web browser--Chrome or Firefox or whatever. There'll be a setting somewhere that allows you to enable or disable it. Maybe "autofill" in Chrome...?

No, I didn't recommend Single Handed. I don't even remember it being discussed. Though that doesn't prove much.

It must have been Rob because I certainly read it on here.

Yes, it was Rob:

http://www.lightondarkwater.com/2016/07/those-british-crime-dramas-just-keep-coming.html?cid=6a01310f4a6c79970c01bb0924c5b6970d#comment-6a01310f4a6c79970c01bb0924c5b6970d

I finished it

I was sorry to guess it right about Bob

I was certainly sorry to see him meet such a gory end. But your surmise about him acting like someone who was soon going to be killed was really astonishingly accurate. It made me laugh.

I thought the moment of his demise was handled poorly. I was pretty sure that once he went down into the basement he was going to get killed. But that moment where the character who's going to die appears to have escaped, and for a moment exchanges a look of relief or love or something with another character, only to be pounced upon by the monster that flies in from off-screen, must be a pretty big cliche if it even seemed so to me.

I mean, it even happened more or less as you predicted.

By the way, the computer stuff that was the justification for him being the one to go down to the basement was pretty much nonsense. Petty of me to say so but being an IT person I notice things like that.

What did y'all think of the Kali excursion? I don't think they ever mentioned that Kali is the goddess of death, at least in popular western culture. I was not real keen on that part. But I was going to be very upset if El killed that guy and stayed with them. I figure Kali and her gang are going to be back in series 3. Also Maxine's nasty stepbrother and stepfather.

The Kali excursions in the film were very gripping. The scene in the lift when she kills or repels the monster was great. I thought entering the upside down was like descending into hell

Why is the monster Kali in your view?

About the cliche of Bob's death, the cliches are one of the underlying devices of the series. The more you know about those 80s movies, the more you see them.

Well, technically, Bob had to go down to reset the breakers, which was what the woman in JP had to do, and the scene with upsidedowners hunting him had to be deliberately reminiscent of the kitchen scene in JP. The way they stalked was very like the way the velociraptors stalked the children, and I think that chittering sound came from JP also.

Bob had to die to make way for Hop. The Duffers said that he was not originally intended to be such an important part of the series. He just developed.

Kali is the Indian goddess of destruction, but also the Divine Mother, which is an interesting concept when you think about it. Wikipedia says destruction of evil, but I'd never heard that before. I think she'll show up again, and Papa, too.

I never could tell, until the the last couple of episodes, if the Paul Reiser character was good or bad. I'm glad he turned out good.

By the way, there is a Dean Koontz book called The Door into December in which a 9 year old girl is kept in a sensory deprivation tank and develops powers.

A couple of years ago, we watched a series called Granite Flats about some kids in a small town where MK Ultra experiments were being secretly conducted. It was kind of fun. It was made by Brigham Young U. and it was odd because there was an underlying theme of Christianity but not Mormon Christianity.

AMDG

Replying to Grumpy: I didn't mean the monster was Kali. But as Janet elucidates that's the meaning of El/Jane's sister's name--just to make sure we're talking about the same things.

More later.

Ok I thought you were calling the monster Kali. I didn't realize that the 'sister' is called Kali. What is El's sister's name? I know Kali is the Indian goddess of destruction. I thought that Mac was saying the shadow monster was Kali - as a kind of metaphor. I didn't pick up El's sister's name.

Janet said: About the cliche of Bob's death, the cliches are one of the underlying devices of the series. The more you know about those 80s movies, the more you see them.

I agree. The whole miniseries is about the enjoyment of cliche, and not really caring if its a cliche or not. I myself found the idea that Bob has to be the one to go into the basement because he knows Basic, and the others don't even know what Basic is, quite funny. It was one of the few jokes in the series about how different the future is. It works as a joke - it's not intended to be taken very literally. I found his trip down to the basement really terrifying. I had to pause it and go and heat up some more hot milk. I really thought he had escaped and was so sorry when the monsters got him just as he was out the door. I guess its a cliche but it didn't strike me like that - I was too involved with it - and at the same time, I knew he had to die. It was a question of when. It was so inevitable it was simply a question of when.

I'm guessing the Paul Reiser character is Bob / Sam Gamgee. Yes, I wondered at the start, because the boys don't like him. But he got nicer and nicer and it became clear to me he was being set up as a victim.

No. Paul Reiser is the doctor.

AMDG

I'm assuming that the sister's name is spelled K-a-l-i. That's definitely how they're pronouncing it, so since she's Indian I'm pretty sure that's what it's meant to be.

The Paul Reiser character is the doctor, the one in charge of the lab who won't go along with the evil plans and is the one survivor (as far as we know) of the staff. Bob is played by Sean Astin. Who by the way I discovered yesterday is Patty Duke's son.

I understand the idea of all those references to movies of the '80s etc., and the fun of it. Although I'm sure I missed a whole lot of them. But there's some kind of line between homage and cliche and Bob's death crossed it for me because it took away the element of surprise. Not a big deal, I just thought it was a slight miscalculation.

Also I understand that Bob had to die to clear the way for Hopper and Joyce. Computer stuff in movies is usually nonsense, but the idea that someone needed to write a program, never mind the language, to override the lockdown (or whatever it was) was nonsense. It's like all those scenes where the good guys need to get into some system and it says "password required" and they call over the hacker of the group and he pounds a few keys and says "Ok, I'm in." Password cracking doesn't work that way. Again, it's not a big deal, and the general point that the techie guy needed to be the one to do it was ok. Like I said I just notice things like that because I'm in the trade.

And yes, that whole pursuit by the demodogs in the building was *very* Jurassic Park.

To answer your question, 'what do you think of the Kali excursion?' The punks are annoyingly fake. They are to me the only fake, artificial characters in the series. I didn't like Kali's injunction to 'use your anger', or its return in the 'descent into hell' climax. I would prefer conquest by the power of love alone!

However, it gives El a genuine temptation - to make her mission to kill the bad men and seek revenge. Its important that she rejects that temptation, and realizes, through this excursion, that her mission right now is to save her friends. If she had remained cooped up in that little cottage in the woods, this dramatic return would not have been possible. She now knows that her mission is to save her friends. The 'sister' says to her, 'they cannot save you.' El replies, 'yes but I can save them.' This is very important

Indeed. El's temptation is really important. I wasn't real keen on the device of the killer punks etc, but it needed to happen somehow.

"The power of love"--yes, that's ultimately what makes the series so rewarding, and so different from a lot of the stuff around these days. The solidarity of "the party", the willingness at so many points of characters to give themselves for others--all of that makes it much more than just an enjoyable X-Files-ish thriller.

I love it that when Lucas tells Max the story of what has been going on, she says it's too derivative.

I watched the first series again, too, by the way. About halfway through the first episode of the second series, I realized that I just didn't remember enough. I'm really glad I did that.

AMDG

Im going to confess I binge watched the whole two seasons starting the Friday before last. I started the first season Friday before last, about 8 pm, and I finished it on Saturday at midnight. Then I gave it a rest until Tuesday or Wednesday, then watched one a day until Saturday when I did two, and last night I did two.

I didn't watch it last year because everyone said it was full of hilarious 1980s cinema references. And I thought I just wouldn't get the references. Then when it came to just about half my facebook acquaintance this past month going on about how they were enjoying Season 2, I couldn't hold out any longer. I thought I would plunge in and see if I could understand any of it without the references.

In my memory, ET and Close Encounters are pretty much merged into a single movie.

There was a discussion on Facebook the other day about how many episodes in a row constitute binging. Most answers were in the 3 to 5 range. By that standard, I did not binge. One night I think we watched three, otherwise it was only two.

I also was really glad I watched season 1 again. Comparing notes my wife and I realized we remembered hardly anything specific about it. I remember my parents years ago saying one of the nice things about getting old is that you can watch tv shows twice and enjoy them just as much the second time because you don't remember what happened.

At noon we were having a rocking discussion on facebook about Stranger Things. One person said that EL was Mary with Eleven Stars. Some other people got into a long thing about biological fathers and fatherlessness. Another guy had each character pegged out as a New Testament figure, ie Dusty is Peter!

I got nearly late for class and scurried off. As I left the building I ran into a Protestant philosopher, also nearly late for class. I said we were talking about Christianity in Stranger Things. He said he didn't see any Christianity. O its full of Christ figures I said. He said he hadn't seen any: maybe it was just because he'd only seen the first season. I said, when 'El' is a name for God. He said, so is El god and there is no Christ figure in it? How can that be? Who is the Christ figure if El is the god figure?' He was genuinely puzzled. I was baffled by his puzzlement - didn't he know Christ is God?
We parted confused by one another!

I'm going to suppose that he would have realized his oversight or mistake or whatever you want to call it after a few moments' reflection. In slight defense of him though I'll say that Christians in general, Catholics included, do sometimes talk as if "God" and "Christ" are different things. Usually in the context "God" is referring to God the Father.

It is odd though that he went beyond his first question without realizing his mistake.

I suspect that it's a stretch to identify anything in Stranger Things real closely with anything in Christian theology. But that doesn't mean there isn't a Christ figure (or figures) in it. I don't know if it's the cultural effect of 20 centuries of Christianity or something in human nature but that basic pattern seems to be very appealing to people--the good person who gives him/herself for others.

Sometimes I really do feel that I've detected another reality existing alongside the one I normally experience:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/12/11/6-year-old-made-11-million-in-one-year-reviewing-toys-on-you-tube/

Hey. Now I know what to do. That would be a great job!

AMDG

Maybe. Ryan's probably going to grow up and write a memoir about how exploited he was.

Maybe I'll just do that.

AMDG

Because I'm trying to find the end and so far I've only gotten to 2011

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