The Irish Whip: SummerSlam and the Death of Superman    ·

Dolph Ziggler and The Miz made a good fist of transcending their lowly mid-card status with a heated opener for the Intercontinental Championship at SummerSlam 2014. Still, it was a match that, while plenty entertaining and well put together by two able grapplers who have good in-ring chemistry and can really go, only made me think of those great IC Title matches of SummerSlams past, those proper storytelling feud-settlers preceded by weeks of build-up; Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart vs Mr Perfect is still the apex of that kind of match for me. This, while good, was nothing of the sort, especially with a finish that more-or-less came out of nowhere. (Ziggler’s the new IC Champ, by the way.)

Paige and AJ Lee told a better story in their clash over the Divas Title, with the former showcasing a few new moves added to her arsenal en route to victory and her second reign as WWE’s women’s champ (and on her 22nd birthday, no less). The fans at LA’s Staples Center seemed to appreciate it, too. She’s a great heel, is Paige; she just has the right combination of gothy look and snooty attitude. She’s the opposite of AJ, who makes a terrible face when her promo delivery and slightly unhinged demeanour telegraphs nothing but ‘baddie’.


Dwarf In A Crate    ·

From this Quietus review by the ineffable Mr Agreeable of Future Days, a new book on the history of Krautrock, comes this choice paragraph:

Popol Vuh, soundtracker to the f***ing movies of Herzog! Well, there was a f***ing cinematic genius, as anyone whose slept through one of his f***ing movies will tell you - immortal classics steeped in one-finger drone music such as Dwarf In A Crate, The Man Who Mistook Himself For A Character, Straspulia (Or The Glass Hammer), The Enigma That Wasn’t, Slide Slowly Through Mud, The Wrath Of Paying Audiences, Plosnek, Bosnek and Nonek (A Trilogy) or his unmade sci-fi movie Spacewaster, all of them starring Klaus f***ing Kinski as a c***!

If this blog is for anything, it’s for posting gems like that.

Weeknotes #675    ·

I’m typing these up at the end of a tiring week. I’m looking forward to taking a day off this weekend to decompress a little, maybe watch some TV or movies, or listen to music, just for the pleasure of it, like.

Monday saw my latest piece for Burning Ambulance go online, a review of the debut from Irish post-metal band Raum Kingdom, as well as my newest film review for Thumped, my take on The Congress.

Meanwhile, I was deep in the word mines till Wednesday afternoon. On Wednesday night I ventured out (despite my 6am start that morning) to see Earth play at Whelan’s, with local psych-rockers Wild Rocket supporting. I’ve missed all of Earth’s previous visits — and I interviewed them last month! — so it was about damn time I saw them, and I was not disappointed. I got home some time after midnight slightly spaced out and bleary-eyed, but it was worth it.


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Guardian readers’ recipe swap: Sandwiches
Some lovely picnic/lunch ideas here. Speaking of lunch: here’s a primer on grain salads and how to make them. And while I’m at it, a veggie burger recipe that comes recommended by Tom. #   ·

Ambient space sounds playlist
AKA Kottke goes drone. #   ·

A database for Lego sets, modern and historic alike. Oh my. #   ·

My Thumped review of Into the Storm
I’m gonna start linking my latest reviews here as they go up, starting with this one. Don’t know why I didn’t before; how silly of me. #   ·

Money in the Bank
On big time wrestling’s problem with labour. A good time to post this considering I’m watching SummerSlam right now. #   ·

Freelancing Sucks
It’s a slightly different experience in the US, but yeah: as a business, it does. #   ·

How to Be Polite
Paul Ford is one of the great under-sung short form writers. This is just another great example, when he’s as much practical as entertaining. #   ·

The New York Times on ‘The Rise of Beefcake Yoga’
I’ve been meaning to get in on the DDP Yoga thing for a while, because I’ve seen the results. #   ·

The Dummies’ Guide To Cosplay Photography inĀ 2014
There’s a lot here about cosplay specifically but it’s also about the ethics and etiquette of public photography and behaviour in general, questions of which are often misunderstood on both sides. That some of this shit has to be explained might beggar belief, but there you go. #   ·

Doctor Who to Sherlock: TV franchises now have such devoted followings that casual viewers are alienated
The headline maybe overstates things a tad, but I’m very much behind the notion that ‘fan service’ — which Mark Lawson identifies in other words on his Guardian blog — can make for an impenetrable, elitist experience. Compare with the likes of Star Trek’s various series, or even a show like The West Wing, which all come with rich backstories that colour in every episode, especially in their later series, but aren’t difficult to get into at any stage; indeed, they encourage watching what came before as a pleasure, not a chore like revising for an exam. Fuck, even compare Sherlock with its far superior American counterpart Elementary. It’s a balance, but TV writers seem to be finding it harder to strike, more so I think since the likes of Battlestar Galactica (which seems to be praised as much as derided for its deliberately labyrinthine plotting). #   ·

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