Rippounet

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  1. 'Ghost in the Shell' Live Action(?) Hollywood Edition

    The films, the anime and the manga are all slightly different. GitS has something like a cult-following among anime/manga fans, not unlike Evangelion. And for similar reasons too... It's just, well... Deep. It's the kind of stuff for people who like brain masturbation. For starters, the manga was published in 1989. Basically it's almost thirty years old and it's still visionary. It presented a very credible vision of what the world would look like around 2030, complete with political intrigues and metaphysical questions, but through the investigations of a team of cybernetized special forces/intelligence department whose members sometimes wonder whether they are still human, whether they still have something like a soul in their artificial body, a "ghost in the shell." The 1995 movie basically took the best intrigue(s) and scenes from the manga and crammed it into 1h30. But it did so with amazing visuals and soundtrack, thus developing a unique atmosphere. At the time, the graphics and animation were almost groundbreaking. The opening, which is a scene from the manga, became kind of legendary. It's generally referred to as 'making of a cyborg" : /watch?v=AsIQ_kA77b4 Then the anime (GitS: SAC) that started in 2002 went back to the original concept of the manga: a series of investigations, often unrelated. But it lost a lot of the depth of the original, and imho made too much effort to present the members of Section 9 as good guys. It's still rather cool. You've got plenty of nice action scenes. Just one example: watch?v=s0fzIAYRVAI It also had the merit of properly introducing the tachikomas (the support tanks of Section 9, who have their own AI). They even had some specials with the tachikomas engaging in metaphysical debate: /watch?v=KGTXNQmJAkw The 2004 movie built on its 1995 predecessor. Using one intrigue from the manga (not the same as the 1995 movie), it insisted on the metaphysics (perhaps too much). But it was once more an amazing feat technically and aesthetically. I would say it took about ten years for other animated movies to reach the level of quality of GitS: Innocence (with the possible exception of the FF movies). They had the balls to remake the same opening as the 1995 movie, but with improved graphics. To this day, there's few animated scenes combining such aesthetic quality and depth: watch?v=bc53Hya6iO0 (it no doubt inspired Westworld's opening and "making of a host": /watch?v=VqlJ0Mcx6zk ) And since then there's been a lot more stuff of course, each with its own flavor. I think I've almost seen/read everything, but it's still ongoing, with new stories about -among other things- the 4th World War of 2027 and what Motoko and Batou were doing at the time. This is a visual for the record: I've watched all the teasers and trailers for the live action and I believe I kind of see what they are shooting for. They took the same intrigue as the 1995 movie but introduced a separate subplot about Motoko's identity which contradicts the canon in several ways. I'm... skeptical. Also, as much as I appreciate ScarJo, I'm not sure she's cold enough... She's still too human imho. The Major is supposed to be ice-cold. Literally machine-like. And I'm afraid the story will be significantly dubbed-down... Anyway, not sure what's best to start with (it's really a matter of whether you prefer the action scenes or the metaphysics), but I would say it's not the action movie, unless you want the Hollywood version of GITS . One should start either with the 1989 manga, the 1995 movie or with the 2013 short movies about how Section 9 was founded (check this link and activate subtitles /watch?v=g1z3IV01g1U ).
  2. US Politics: Ask Fox News

    And it goes without saying, to promote a patriarchal vision of society in which women have to rely on men as much as possible. I wonder how a movement called "conservatism," whose name appropriately says what it's all about, came to be seen as being about individual liberty (which it's not).
  3. French politics: houlala!

    At this point, contrary to one might think, Le Pen is being rather mild with the islamophobia... Or let's say she's trying to show she can talk of other things. The reason is that everyone knows what she stands for, so she doesn't need to insist too much, a few remarks here or there are enough. Similarly, any terrorist attack helps her case without her needing to make a special declaration.Other officials from her party will do it if they think it helps. Generally speaking, I'm tempted to say that unless there is a major attack on European soil Le Pen is going to focus on trying to convince undecided voters who are afraid of the economic aspects of her program. Islamophobia has gotten her this far, but by itself it shouldn't be enough to giver her the presidency, she needs to show she's more than that. And this just in: Le Pen just had a meeting with Putin today. Not sure what to make of this, Putin is a controversial subject in France.
  4. Jon was born a bastard and remains a bastard.

    One could easily reverse this entire line of argumentation and say that despite the presence of some elements of the "hidden prince trope" it is wishful thinking to believe that Martin will adhere to the "classic" outcome of said trope. As I like to say, "this isn't Return of the King." In fact, I expect something much closer to the outcome of Robb's Farseer trilogy. But the heart of the matter is that no one knows what Martin intends to do, and that people should probably avoid accusing others of "ignorance" or "blindness." I believe nearly everyone here knows what the hidden prince trope is. What we disagree on is the way Martin is going to use it. I agree with you on this one, which is exactly why I don't understand some people's insistance on Jon's possible legitimacy. I'm not certain Lord Varys disagrees either btw. People arguing against Jon being legitimate from his birth don't necessarily deny the possibility of him becoming a prince or a king. Quite the contrary, I would say it's about arguing what will allow him to become a prince... That's a rather petty argument. There's a troubling tendency of this forum to talk of "Jon fans" or "Dany fans" which I personally find highly ridiculous. My GF believes it's due to a tendency to project's one's sexual fantasies on fictional characters. Again, ironically, I at least partially agree with this. I also think Jon's story is going to be bittersweet all the way. So will Dany's imho.
  5. Tell Me About A Great Biography You've Read.

    Well, many of his books are autobiographical to some degree. "Notes from a small island" and "Notes from a big country" are must-read kind-of travel books for people who want to read his hilarious perspective on the respective cultures of the UK and the US. I believe both are studied in English classes throughout the world. He also wrote "The Life and Times of the hunderbolt Kid" about his childhood, but I found it less funny (it's probably better if you're an American from his generation).
  6. Jon was born a bastard and remains a bastard.

    I've been thinking along similar lines. With the text we have (not just the fever dream, but Ned's inner thoughts as well) I believe it's one of the best conclusions we can reach at this point. Most of the other explanations quickly run into a lack of textual support and/or the necessity of various assumptions or speculations. I'm surprised this very simple perspective on the ToJ isn't mentioned more often. If you think about it, the fever dream notwhithstanding, when the rebellion succeeded, the KG had two simple options: bend the knee to Robert or carry on fighting for the dying Targ dynasty. That some chose the latter option really doesn't mean they had any convoluted plans for the future. In fact, such scheming suited the likes of Darry or Connington much more than the KG. Which in a non-literal way is actually what the exchange in the fever dream appears to say.
  7. Tell Me About A Great Biography You've Read.

    My diary. Ahem. Have you tried Bill Bryson?
  8. French politics: houlala!

    It will help him keep most of his electoral base I guess, but other voters are likely to remain unimpressed. His main problem is that unlike Republicans in the US, French conservatives have two other options: Macron for the neo-liberal approach and Le Pen for the conservatism. Accusing Hollande isn't a bad move because many people will think there is a grain of truth to it, but it's nevertheless unlikely to wash off the stain of the charges, and Hollande isn't running so it won't help him get more votes. In the end, Fillon is going to be stuck around 20% as many previously undecided voters prefer betting on Macron. I think I see what you mean. But quite honestly the French president doesn't have the power to change the fundamental social principles of the economy. Nor is the people really ready for this kind of radical proposition. As it is the UBI is an interesting proposal because it has the power to eventually do more than simply mitigate the downsides of the current system if done right. But originally you were talking about politics. And on this point I agree that unless a radical transformation occurs, populism will remain a dire threat for the foreseeable future. And such a political transformation will in turn have the potential to change the economic rules.
  9. US Politics: Ask Fox News

    Fascinating. After 3 nights of terrible sleep and having been up for a bit more than 15 hours I somehow vaguely understand what he's saying... All it takes is to forget anything approaching subtelty. Paint with as broad a brush as possible. Simplify everything.
  10. Their breath is always fresh.
  11. Jon was born a bastard and remains a bastard.

    You are correct, failing to establish a specific meaning is not the same as establishing meaninglessness. I should have written "since you can't establish the meaning you claim, your argument is void for the purpose of this discussion."
  12. Jon was born a bastard and remains a bastard.

    The point is that the KG's presence by itself means nothing. Since there's no way to be certain of what they knew before Ned arrived, it's impossible to argue that they necessarily decided to stay "to protect the king." QED. So now in order to argue that the KG may have stayed before Jon was even born, you speak of an interregnum, which basically means that in this case at least one of the KG should have left to protect Viserys... You also admit that no one is king until the line of succession is clear... Basically invalidating your entire line of reasoning up to now. Sooo... If Jon has to be born for them to stay... How can them staying be an argument to support the idea that Jon was already born and they saw him as king? It matters a great deal because their presence at the ToJ means nothing if Ned is the one to give them the information allowing them to see Jon as the heir. But since we've established their mere presence is meaningless, why would anyone assume they are fighting over Jon since neither he nor Lyanna are mentioned in the exchange? Why couldn't it be over what we actually have right there in the text, i.e. that they refuse to bend the knee to Robert and decide to fight people they believe to be rebels... to king Viserys?
  13. Jon was born a bastard and remains a bastard.

    But you're missing the main point, which is time. There can't be enough time between Jon's birth and Ned's arrival for the KG's presence at the ToJ to be meaningful. They've all stayed far away from the king for weeks or months, even after the Trident. At what point exactly is Jon's legitimacy supposed to have played a role? In order to argue that their presence means what you say it means you have to say there was a moment in time when the KG should have left the ToJ but decided to remain instead, because of Jon. This decisive moment would of course have to be after the Sack (or else Aegon comes before Jon) and after Jon's birth (otherwise he could have been a girl), but obviously before Ned's arrival. This is why your argument is completely circular. You're arguing that Jon has to be legitimate because the KG were at the ToJ, but in order to use the KG's presence you have to argue that there was necessarily a point in time when Jon's legitimacy forced the KG to stay. The problem is... There's no way you can prove there was such a point in time. It supposes that news of the Sack reached the KG before Ned, but also that Jon was born before Ned arrived. And as silly as this question may seem... Is there even anything in the text saying Jon was born before Ned arrived? Did the KG even know that Lyanna's baby would be a boy? But that is your major problem: your interpretation of the fever dream only works if there was no additional exchange. For starters if there was any additional exchange, it may mean that the KG are really receiving their information from Ned. The idea that they knew about the Sack before Ned's arrival already rests on very little (mainly, their use of the term: usurper). Then there's the very significant problem that since we the readers know that Ned just had a terrible fight with Robert over the death of Aegon and Rhaenys, any additional exchange between the KG and Ned would have shown that there was no way Ned could be a threat to his own nephew. In other words, the only way Jon is the reason for this fight is if Ned and the KG do not communicate, as in the dream. In a nutshell, we're back to what I said originally: any literal reading of the fever dream is probably mistaken.
  14. French politics: houlala!

    Not at all. Mélenchon at least talks a lot about geopolitics. Or do you mean something else? Not sure what you mean by transformation of the economy either.
  15. Jon was born a bastard and remains a bastard.

    What makes you say they have to be different? It's a rhetorical question. I'm just pointing out that for the KG's presence to be meaningful you need to start making assumptions, speculations, or interpret the text in a very specific way, which completely invalidates the meaningfulness of the presence that is supposed to be there in the first place. Or to put it differently, the KG's presence would be meaningful if the whole ToJ thing took place long after the Sack. But the chronology doesn't really allow for that or else you begin having other much bigger problems. The real reason why you believe there are two sets of reasons is because you are starting from the conclusion and not from the facts. This doesn't address my point. I'm asking you how is it honourable to start a fight to the death without explaining it. Your reasoning here is actually circular.