Adventures in time and imagination

time and imagination

I watched the series finale of Jessica Jones the other day, and it was as satisfying as any series finale I’ve ever seen. After three seasons of angst and despair, our hero had come to terms with her demons and was ready to take on the world. It would be nice to see what happens next, but that might be redundant: The story of her triumph over those demons was complete.

A day later in another venue (my car versus my living room), I finished listening to the audiobook of Moby-Dick by Herman Melville. After 135 chapters and an epilogue, Ishmael’s journey also was complete. And in a third venue (my favorite blue chair by the window), I am slightly more than halfway through a book called Fractured Stars by Lindsay Buroker.

The three experiences are similar, in terms of an investment of time. Continue reading “Adventures in time and imagination”

Screenings: Jessica Jones

Jessica Jones Season 3

I think it was George Reeves and The Adventures of Superman who got me hooked on superhero adventures, and it was definitely Amazing Spider-Man #4 that put me over the edge.

Detective stories came later. Sit me down with a good Harry Bosch novel and I’m in heaven. If we’re looking for something new to watch on the telly, I’ll browse through the procedurals first.

I never heard of the comic book Alias until a few years back when Netflix announced that Jessica Jones was going to be one of its four Marvel superheroes series – but a hard-boiled detective who has superpowers and is played by Jesse Pinkman’s sultry girlfriend from Breaking Bad? Talk about cross-pollinating my favorite genres – I was in before I saw minute one. Continue reading “Screenings: Jessica Jones”

Mourning the possibilities


The Netflix collaboration with Marvel Comics produced some of the most compelling superhero adventures ever produced for television. Daredevil starring Charlie Cox and Jessica Jones starring Krysten Ritter, especially, are two of my favorite TV shows ever – crisp writing, terrific acting, visual treats.

Most of the other shows – Luke Cage, The Defenders, The Punisher – are solid, as well.

The notable exception was Iron Fist, which has taken two or three years to get on course. Continue reading “Mourning the possibilities”

#TBT: I just want to go my way


One of the great characters in contemporary fiction is Capt. Malcolm Reynolds, owner of the cargo ship Serenity in Joss Whedon’s brilliant television show Firefly and the film named after the ship. At a pivotal moment in Serenity, Reynolds meets his main adversary, a nameless assassin we know simply as The Operative, and during their conversation comes an electrifying exchange that sums up Reynolds’ character in 11 words.

Operative: I have to hope you understand you can’t beat us.

Reynolds: I got no need to beat you; I just want to go my way.

Consider how powerful a message those words convey. I don’t need to convince you that my way is right and yours is wrong; I simply desire to live my life on my terms and let you live your life on your terms, as long as we do no harm to each other. There is plenty of room on this vast world for both of us. Continue reading “#TBT: I just want to go my way”

I have been dying of thirst in the ocean for lack of strange wine


Strange Wine girl

Harlan Ellison died the other day, and the world grew more dull. I, of course, never met the man, but when I encountered his words I never failed to learn something, to be entertained, and/or to gain some insight into the human condition.

Oh, enough of that – the man was a hero to anyone who loves to see bullshit called out, grabbed by the throat and humiliated.

And he was, as the blurb on the cover to his collection Strange Wine, asserted, someone who “just could be the best short story writer alive today.” At least until Thursday. Continue reading “I have been dying of thirst in the ocean for lack of strange wine”

The knife to the eye did it for me

Luke Cage logo

I kind of hit the wall toward the end of Season 2, Episode 1 of Marvel’s Luke Cage, the latest entry in the gritty Netflix adaptations of the comic books.

The new bad guy in town was asserting himself as the baddest, and when the old bad guy wouldn’t back down, the new bad guy took a big knife and ended the old bad guy.

It wasn’t any worse, more or less, than any other violent death depicted on TV or movies in recent years. It was just one gratuitous depiction too many for me. Continue reading “The knife to the eye did it for me”

You are not powerless


“What next?” – Ask that question every day.

Stop looking back – This is today.

But: An appreciation of past work is what I do. I’m happiest finding an unexplored or underexplored bit or literature or pop culture and sharing what I’ve found – like Firefly.

“I don’t care what you believe – just believe!”

Shepherd Book’s last words are imprecise. “Not caring what you believe” can lead you into the darkness of Clinton vs. Trump.

Belief in something bigger, a higher purpose, the betterment of our species, adding to the beauty – One would like to believe that’s what Whedon/Shepherd Book meant.

People believe they are so powerless nowadays, even though they have possessed the power all along, like Dorothy discovering she could have reached her goal anytime she wanted because she already had all she needed to do so.

We are born free and with the power to choose our life’s path, but people/governments/bosses/well-meaning fools beat down spirit and steal freedom and power, obscuring the truth that empowerment is of nature, of God – we are endowed by our Creator with certain, unalienable rights.

Children need to be taught that they are not free to infringe on others’ freedoms and rights, of course, but so much teaching these days is more about being a proper slave than about exercising responsible freedom.