I’m Not a Real Doctor

I’m Not a Real Doctor

We need to take a few steps to get caught up to the present. In 1976, Kiss released Rock and Roll All Over which featured “Calling Dr. Love,” a song about a “doctor” who suggests that he can cure his patients with the magical healing powers of his penis. Fascinated by the absurdity of this (excessively creepy) premise, alternative/temporarily-ska [...]

Meant to Be a Hero

Meant to Be a Hero

I understand why Oscar-bait films are often slow and brooding and filled with misfortune and misanthropes: That style allows all the meta-textual material to be dumped right out in the open. No one is watching Schindler’s List and wondering what the film thinks about war and heroism, you know? Superhero movies are … not that. They’re big [...]

Not Our Love

Not Our Love

NOFX takes a fair amount of shit for being a joke band, a pejorative way of branding a band that doesn’t take themselves too seriously as a band that can’t be taken seriously. That’s a mistake. Sure, Fat Mike sings about clams (not) having feelings, has portrayed himself as a literal clown, and has spent his entire [...]

Breathing In

Breathing In

A few weeks ago, one of my favorite newsletter writers suggested that they weren't necessarily burnt out, they just didn't want to do much of anything for a while. I guess you could argue that's exactly what burn out feels like but it doesn't really matter what you call it, because the important thing is [...]

The Indescribable Excellence of Marcus Sedgwick’s Midwinterblood

The Indescribable Excellence of Marcus Sedgwick’s Midwinterblood

Marcus Sedgwick's Midwinterblood is one of those books that defies review because if you discuss any element of its plot, you start chipping away at the mystery and suspense that make it such a gripping read. Here's the most I'm comfortable relating: For its first few pages, Midwinterblood seems like it might be a romance [...]