Sequential art/literature.

More from the genius that is Tom Gauld:

and

and

and

and last but not least…

from here, here, here, here, and here.

And previously: go here, here, here, here, and here.

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Motion pictures arts & sciences.

I don’t have a whole lot to say about the glitz and the glamor of the Oscars or Hollywood royalty or whatever, but let’s get down to brass tacks, people: Predictions. I want to hear yours. I only have a few I want to talk about here, so let’s get down to what I feel is the strongest lock of the night…

Aaron Sorkin for The Social Network‘s screenplay. What is that, Best Adapted Screenplay? Yeah.

Next: Best score.

Probably Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for The Social Network? I guess? Though I do like Hans Zimmer’s score for Inception, but I just don’t see it or any of the other nominees taking it. Reznor and Ross’ score is just so different and stands out head and shoulders above the rest in so many ways.

Next: Best Acress.

Is there anyone out there who doesn’t think that Natalie Portman will get this?

I’m surprised they didn’t mail this to her like a week ago. Actually, that’s not true. I’m saying there’s a 94% chance it’ll go to Portman, and a %6 chance it’ll go to Annette Bening for Lisa Cholodenko’s The Kids Are All Right.

I want to make the point that, sadly, I haven’t seen as nearly as many of the nominated movies as I’d like this year, but that’s true of just about any year, unfortunately. Even sadder still is that I don’t think you need to see the movies to make fairly informed guesses on who’ll win. So much of the Oscar wins can be predicted on either buzz or what the Academy has done before or both.

Next: Best Supporting.

I feel like Christian Bale and Melissa Leo are both going to get it for David O. Russell’s The Fighter.

Much, much smaller chances: Geoffrey Rush or John Hawkes, but I just don’t see it.

Next: Best Actor.

I don’t have a clue. Colin Firth, most likely. If you’d put a gun to my head, that’s what I would’ve said. But maybe Javier Bardem too, but I’m saying that just because he seems like such a dark horse candidate.

Next: The main event. Best Picture.

Forget all the other movies, it all comes down to The Social Network and The King’s Speech. Right?

from here.

But not Black Swan. Sorry, Black Swan, you’re not perfect enough.

If I had to guess, I’d say that The King’s Speech will get it, unfortunately. I’d love for Inception to get it. You know why? JUST CAUSE. Fall asleep on an airplane and I’ll put that idea in your brain. But I think Time magazine pegged it most accurately: This all comes down to the new vs. old. The Social Network is a movie completely unlike anything else that’s been nominated for Best Picture before and The King’s Speech is just another helping of the same old shit. As Time also put it: This comes down to head vs. heart. The Social Network is a highly intellectual film and The King’s Speech is pappy crap, that same shit that tugs on your heartstrings again and again each award season. Vanilla bullshit.

Voting for The King’s Speech is a bullet in the head of a newborn kitten! You might as well go vote for Life Is Beautiful again! Ugh. And yet, I feel like it’ll win, as do a lot of people, of course. I feel like the writing is on the wall…

That said, I feel like this might be one of those weird years where whoever gets Best Director might not get Best Film as well. Or maybe not. I just can’t see Aronofsky or David O. Russell taking home a little gold man tonight.

This should be exciting though. Are you ready? Can you feel the heat?

And what’s your predictions?

Is religion a force for good in the world?

“Is religion a force for good in the world?” That was the question asked in a debate between former UK prime minister Tony Blair, a recently converted Catholic, and author/journalist/polemicist/anti-theist Christopher Hitchens (who was recently diagnosed with esophageal cancer). The meeting of the two men was part of the ongoing Munk debates sponsored by the Aurora Foundation and the motion put forth was simply “Be it resolved, religion is a force for good in the world,” with Blair taking up the pro side and Hitchens naturally taking on the con argument.

The can find the first part up there but here is: Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, and Part 8.

Found here and here.

I think it’s important to mention that Hitchens won, by the way. It’s nice that reason and intellect and win, even if it’s just once.

The risk of going too far.

Meanwhile on the internet…

Some bullshit happening somewhere.

Beck and Palin “letterbombed” via Facebook by Stephen Colbert fans.

Don’t forget: The Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert rally is tomorrow.

The recent Halloween episode of Modern Family is a pretty good example of that show at it’s finest.

There’s two new planets out there, fuck yeah.

Inside the war between Conan O’Brien and Jay Leno.

Ellen cured Portia’s fear of eating out.

My husband wants me to imitate animals in the bedroom.

“Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”

T.S. Eliot.

One of my favorite words in our current existence: Cyberwar!

Dear DC Comics: Please fucking reprint Flex Mentallo already.

The pictures in this post are actually paintings by Andy Denzler and can be found here.

True Blood‘s Ryan Kwanten to play Charles Manson. I can totally see it.

Newly released files show Hitler’s daily routine.

The world’s most precise clocks could reveal that the world is a hologram.

Your fingers know when you make a typo.

I want to go there.

Yesterday was 23 things and today it’ll be shorter, though not necessarily sweeter, with a mere five things…

1. This:

from here.

Oh, that Nic Cage. Amazing and strange as usual. And totally an animal lover.

2. Molly Lambert’s piece about Tina Fey/Jon Hamm on This Recording today. It’s a wonderful, honed bit on comedians and characters and gender politics and objectification, and it’s brilliant. And aside from that, as she frequently is, so is Molly Lambert, who stands out amongst most internet writers for me in that she writes in quick bursts of sharp, insightful thought on a subject, but also survives in the long form where as so many other writers on the interwebz only seem to generate a few decent pull quotes to be linked to and reblogged ad nauseam. She tackles issues both old and new in a fresh way, in a smart way but one that’s also accessible to all the various levels of the hoi polloi, and she has that quality that you loathsomely envy: She writes in a way that feels like it’s resonating both with the thoughts you had on an issue, but are always worded better through her view on the matter, or, more honestly, she says the things you wish you were thinking/saying.

3. Praising Molly Lambert isn’t exactly a new thing, nor should it be, but the post about Jon Hamm/Tina Fey/Don Draper/Liz Lemon is really that good. And I love that it tackles how weird these characters are in so many ways, but refreshingly weird, but also that these are sex symbols for smart people, or for anyone with eyes, sure, but also for us sapiosexuals in the audience as well.

And she mentions something that I’ve never thought of before, but the idea that masculinity is basically a performance, not just between “bros,” I wouldn’t think, but in general. All the world’s a stage, I suppose, and all the men and women on that stage are players in a game of some sort. Especially those of us with the Y chromosome, which I feel. I mean, it’s not something I really considered before, though I kind of did, but now I really feel it. Never mind, that sounds stupid, but you get what I’m saying?

3A. Can we ever talk about just how fucking weird Jon Hamm the real life person seems? I kind of love the impression that I’ve gotten that he’s the exact opposite of Don Draper, not stupid (but more than a little dorky maybe)(but endearingly dorky, you know?), of course, but closer to his character on 30 Rock. Is Don Draper the ultimate vista to the wider landscape of manhood?

from here.

4. This article here from the BBC, about how scientists have made a breakthrough in “artificial life,” developing the world’s first synthetic living cell. I saw this at work today and shared it with this guy that comes in sometimes, my local atheist friend. He and I have bonded over the years over our hatred of intolerance towards scientific exploration and a favoring of antiquated notions like “organized religion” instead of advancement of all the wonderful aspects of the human race. This phenomenon reached something of a fever pitch during a particularly turbulent period in our country called “The Bush years.”

Anyway, so my atheist friend and I were talking about all of this as we tend to do and laughing and riffing on it and basically griping about how science (especially things dealing with like stem cells, for example) is held back or considered not interesting in America or, my favorite, the work of the Devil. We had a good laugh about that, talking about science as “the work of the Devil,” and because I have a vivid imagination, I literally imagined a guy who looks like this…

…in charge of a lab somewhere, ordering scientists around, approving budgets, and demanding more breakthroughs. “We’re trying to save them, but they refuse to see!” the Devil would say (as I said in my beast throaty demon voice), shaking his cloven hoof/fist angrily, and then they head into the break room to celebrate the birthday of one of the girls in the geophysics department, ha ha.

5. Today I had to make a nearly impossible decision, but also an incredibly mundane one. All the same, it was a tough one. It was the eternal debate of which movie to watch over my lunch break, and the choices came down to…

When Harry Met Sally vs. You’ve Got Mail. I know, I know. Fucking ridiculous, right?

But I do like them both. I appreciate them both. And, well, I kind of hate both as well. But I put it to you, gentle readers, before I say which one I picked, I’m a bit curious, which would you have picked? Metaphorically, the lady or the tiger?

The girl with 7 evil exes.

The trailer for the long awaited Scott Pilgrim movie came out yesterday. It’s based on the much loved six part graphic novel series by Bryan Lee O’Malley and stars Michael Cera, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Chris Evans (the new Captain America), Anna Kendrick, Aubrey Plaza, Mae Whitman, Jason Schwartzman, and like a thousand other people as well.

The film, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is directed by Edgar Wright, of Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz fame. Haven’t seen Hot Fuzz but Shaun Of The Dead left me flaccid. Only saw a few episodes of Spaced. I guess Wright’s not terrible, but a little overrated, and seems to be a junior member of Tarantino’s homage trapper league. I pray that he doesn’t end up directing the next Mission: Impossible movie.

And I should point out that while I’ve only read the first entry in the Scott Pilgrim comics series, is not Michael Cera horrible casting?

Somebody, please, enlighten me on that one. I’ll probably see this movie, it seems fresh and not totally horrible, but like Where The Wild Things Are, something designed to appear magical and lure in and then capture hipsters or whatever we’re calling them these days and those who want to seem cool.

Also, will this be the film adaptation by which people have to go out and read the original material, like Watchmen, and act like they were always down with it?

And, honestly, all of that’s fine with me as long as I don’t have to endure Michael Cera fingerbanging somebody again.

Mad linkage:

Music is replacing religion,” says academic.

Will Broken Social Scene be able to “recapture the magic?”

13 year old prodigy is being discriminated against because of his age. Geek.

Possible explanation for ghosts: The “Stone Tape” theory.

The ten worst jobs in science.

The most beautiful death of Aldous Huxley.

David Mamet sends a memo to his writers on The Wire.

Hash browns.

The world’s most feminist country? Motherfucking Iceland, yo.

Chicago architects to design the world’s tallest building to be built in Saudi Arabia.

Brie Larson, who plays Envy Adams (the character based on Emily Haines) in the Scott Pilgrim movie.

See?

Are serials losing forward momentum with television audiences?

Speaking of which, 24 is officially cancelled.

Obama tells the GOP to suck his dick, re: health care reform.

Roger Ebert producing new movie review show. RIP At The Movies.

China’s female astronauts must be married mothers. That wouldn’t be the case in motherfucking Iceland.

John Kerry’s regrets about John Edwards.

Du Pacque “Walk Straight

“And this I know, his teeth were as white as snow.”

The postal service is moving closer to a five day delivery schedule.

Only slightly related, I don’t think the other Postal Service will ever put out a second album.

How to get chatroulette girls to flash their boobs.

Ben Lyons raped and killed a girl and her name was Pauline Kael.

Peter Biskind, Steven Spielberg, Jaws and “Bruce.”

Is it better to cheat with normal girls or “trashy girls?”

Extinction events that almost wiped out humans.

The night time you say forever

Breakfast pizza.

Carrying a gun increases your risk of getting shot and killed.

Finally have something in common with Peaches Geldof.

Psychologist invents butt bra.

Kid Cudi “Pursuit Of Happiness” (feat. MGMT, Ratatat)

Oral sex to blame for rise in head and neck cancer?

Lesbian Holocaust memorial.

Vienna boy’s choir sex scandal, by Roger Boyes.

Interview with Atom Egoyan.

Butch returning for a sequel, minus Sundance.

The hubble telescope confirms that the universe is getting bigger, faster!

So tonight that I might see.

Seeing is believing?

“Something big is out there beyond the visible edge of our universe…”

Total free fall/No parachutes.

“No one knows what it’s like to be the bad man…”

Are we tipping towards solitude?

Nic Cage and Somalian pirates.

Newsweek 20/10: The decade in rewind.

When Lost returns next year, it’ll return to us Tuesdays at 9 PM.

Speaking of which, according to Ian Somerhalder, the script for the season premiere of Lost, entitled “LA X” is so detailed that it weighs 3 pounds.

“No one knows what it’s like to be hated…”

When it comes to Sarah Palin’s book, media coverage is the real story.

Also, hat flap!

Ryan Reynolds and Anna Faris present you: TMI.

The 50 best inventions of 2009.

Bunkerlust.

My thoughts on proposing marriage via the internet.

Bigfoot?

Porn de la Concorde.

“Now this is something the other tour guides won’t tell you…”

100 books that defined the 00s.

NPR’s best books of 2009.

Vanity book awards.

Trump cards.” Nabokov’s new book, at long last.

Rick Moody’s epic twitter fail.

A Clockwork Orange-style sex attacks in Thailand.

“I look to you and I see nothing.”

Guess I got what I deserved, kept you waiting there too long, my love.”

Steve Holt!”

Thank you for your suffering.

Two of my favorite things.

This is what happens when you sample Sufjan Stevens in your rap song.

New Fight Club Blu-Ray DVDs are not actually defective.

How the puppets for The Fantastic Mr. Fox were made.

Disturbing Twilight products.

from here.

“The hurting’s on me, yea, but I will never be free, no no no…”

Victim in fatal car crash tragically not Glenn Beck.

The Onion AV Club interviews Richard Dawkins.

Sarah Palin and William Shatner.

Pete Doherty took drugs into court.

What is up with MF DOOM these days?

Controversial signs of mass cannibalism.

A dream of interstellar travel.

Alfred Gescheidt, Untitled, 1967, from here.

How many people are in space right now?

Undersea volcano erupts!

Loud bass killed student?

Bionic fingers!

The 100 essential websites.

A tsunami on the sun.

The Earth’s atmosphere came from outer space.

Ten science stories that changed our decade.

Unfriend.

One thing I miss is in