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The Lounge => Media and Inspiration => Topic started by: Lynn on August 13, 2020, 01:30:34 AM

Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 13, 2020, 01:30:34 AM
HBO has been promoting their TV series based on Matt Ruff's book Lovecraft Country. If you are a bit curious about it, I have written a review of the book (http://www.lovecraftrpg.com/2020/08/09/review-lovecraft-country-by-matt-ruff-is-a-good-jaffe/). It triggered at least one person over on one of the Lovecraft FB groups so I must have gotten something right. Anyone else read this or one?
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Shrieking Banshee on August 13, 2020, 01:47:49 AM
Hot take on my end: Lovecrafts work wouldn't have been as effective if he wasn't a racist. You need a deep seated paranoia and fear to make what he did. And despite being his target of fear, I find his quality of work to have values that trancend race and class paradoxically. Despite being a massive racist, the guys work resonates with me deeply on a values level in the feeling of isloation and lonliness.

Thats the power of art over pure propaganda.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Ghostmaker on August 13, 2020, 10:18:23 AM
Cthulhu does not care what color you are when he eats you.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Trond on August 13, 2020, 10:44:27 AM
Quote from: Shrieking Banshee;1144655
Hot take on my end: Lovecrafts work wouldn't have been as effective if he wasn't a racist. You need a deep seated paranoia and fear to make what he did. And despite being his target of fear, I find his quality of work to have values that trancend race and class paradoxically. Despite being a massive racist, the guys work resonates with me deeply on a values level in the feeling of isloation and lonliness.

Thats the power of art over pure propaganda.



I knew it! You're a blasphemous abomination from space.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 14, 2020, 12:23:14 PM
Quote from: Shrieking Banshee;1144655
Hot take on my end: Lovecrafts work wouldn't have been as effective if he wasn't a racist. You need a deep seated paranoia and fear to make what he did. And despite being his target of fear, I find his quality of work to have values that trancend race and class paradoxically. Despite being a massive racist, the guys work resonates with me deeply on a values level in the feeling of isloation and lonliness. Thats the power of art over pure propaganda.

What I find interesting is that the torch & pitchforks crowd ignore the handful of positive depictions of minorities, such as the doctor in "Cool Air" and the elderly Black couple living in the old Curwen house in the "Strange Case of Charles Dexter Ward."
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Omega on August 16, 2020, 01:13:57 AM
Quote from: Lynn;1144881
What I find interesting is that the torch & pitchforks crowd ignore the handful of positive depictions of minorities, such as the doctor in "Cool Air" and the elderly Black couple living in the old Curwen house in the "Strange Case of Charles Dexter Ward."

Or the minorities keeping the thing from the Shining Trapezohedron at bay with nightly vigils.

But of course racists see racism everywhere.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 16, 2020, 01:53:33 PM
Quote from: Omega;1145052
Or the minorities keeping the thing from the Shining Trapezohedron at bay with nightly vigils.

But of course racists see racism everywhere.

That's an interesting one that nobody mentioned in the Q&A on Quora (https://www.quora.com/What-are-some-positive-depictions-of-non-White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestants-in-the-works-of-H-P-Lovecraft?q=lovecraft%20positive).
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Trond on August 16, 2020, 11:31:27 PM
I am watching the show right now. First question: are American movie makers capable of making movies with black folks without making it all about racism?

I find the view of the past here bizarre. Do they really think that if som black people went to the wrong town in the fifties white people would immediately start shooting? Or that virtually every conversation that black people had was about racism?
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Omega on August 17, 2020, 04:59:48 AM
Quote from: Trond;1145180
I am watching the show right now. First question: are American movie makers capable of making movies with black folks without making it all about racism?

I find the view of the past here bizarre. Do they really think that if som black people went to the wrong town in the fifties white people would immediately start shooting? Or that virtually every conversation that black people had was about racism?

Modern ones... Yes. This goes back at least to the 90s when it crept into comics now and then. Rare, but saw it even then. I know it wasnt really. But it felt like every time someone black went into the modern past it was wall to wall racist. Pretty sure it popped up in one or two TV series as well.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 17, 2020, 12:16:04 PM
Quote from: Trond;1145180
I am watching the show right now. First question: are American movie makers capable of making movies with black folks without making it all about racism?  I find the view of the past here bizarre. Do they really think that if som black people went to the wrong town in the fifties white people would immediately start shooting? Or that virtually every conversation that black people had was about racism?

That's reflected in the book. There are no positive interactions with white people, and all white people in the book are bad. Atticus gets the attention of police constantly, abused, shot at by cops at a distance and the like.

While it is possible that could have happened, in the book it happens in every town. While the setting is (at times) the "Jim Crow South", there is also the problem that this represents all of America. And while all of America did have some form of segregation, it wasn't all Jim Crow.

I found the constant talk about racism also to be quite revisionist. You don't have to express dismay over every thing which is understood to be the norm. That's the sort of thing that at least in film or television, could and should be expressed through character expression. It reminds me of the rather horrible acting in "The Handmaiden's Tale" when the main character shows clear and obvious hatred on her face to the 'masters.' That is clearly to the benefit of the revisionist audience, since that nasty expression would have been slapped away the first time it appeared.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Trond on August 17, 2020, 03:23:15 PM
Quote from: Lynn;1145261
That's reflected in the book. There are no positive interactions with white people, and all white people in the book are bad. Atticus gets the attention of police constantly, abused, shot at by cops at a distance and the like.

While it is possible that could have happened, in the book it happens in every town. While the setting is (at times) the "Jim Crow South", there is also the problem that this represents all of America. And while all of America did have some form of segregation, it wasn't all Jim Crow.

I found the constant talk about racism also to be quite revisionist. You don't have to express dismay over every thing which is understood to be the norm. That's the sort of thing that at least in film or television, could and should be expressed through character expression. It reminds me of the rather horrible acting in "The Handmaiden's Tale" when the main character shows clear and obvious hatred on her face to the 'masters.' That is clearly to the benefit of the revisionist audience, since that nasty expression would have been slapped away the first time it appeared.

I am also thinking in terms of how I would think about this if I were black. I would go insane with all the "you're oppressed, poor you, always".
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Shrieking Banshee on August 17, 2020, 11:50:35 PM
Quote from: Lynn;1145261
That is clearly to the benefit of the revisionist audience, since that nasty expression would have been slapped away the first time it appeared.
Yes it is. George Orwell feared that people in control would try to force all language to a state of binary in order to control people. What he didn't predict was that it could also be done to placate people as well.

Lovecraftian Horror goes beyond race and requires an opening up of the mind. But these people have drugged themselves on the pathetic wretched opium of binary thinking. Everything must go to race or sex or whatever. Its a comforting worldview in a way.

Quote from: Trond;1145282
I would go insane with all the "you're oppressed, poor you, always".
You might have but it is also very validating. 'You're never at fault at anything' is a very comforting thought.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 19, 2020, 09:46:45 PM
An FYI for those that are interested. The first episode of Lovecraft Country is on HBO's Youtube account, free.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Warder on August 20, 2020, 03:05:04 AM
I would read the reivew but the whole Watchmen thing kinda soured me on modern series with racial american themes. Its as if USA invented slavery in their minds. They ignore all this shit going on in the rest of the world, for example white slavery. And yes, it exists too, when are we going to get some of that in media?
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: BoxCrayonTales on August 20, 2020, 02:20:01 PM
Quote from: Shrieking Banshee;1144655
Hot take on my end: Lovecrafts work wouldn't have been as effective if he wasn't a racist. You need a deep seated paranoia and fear to make what he did. And despite being his target of fear, I find his quality of work to have values that trancend race and class paradoxically. Despite being a massive racist, the guys work resonates with me deeply on a values level in the feeling of isloation and lonliness.

Thats the power of art over pure propaganda.

Not only that, but a number of mythos fiction actually challenges Lovecraft's racism and wouldn't be able to do that if he wasn't racist. Lovecraft Country wouldn't exist if Lovecraft wasn't racist. Neither would stories like "The Litany of Earth" or "The Black Brat of Dunwich" which depict Lovecraft's monsters as the victims.

("The Black Brat" is also technically a body horror story. Imagine what it must be like to be a yog-spawn (https://forums.sufficientvelocity.com/threads/lets-read-everything-howard-phillips-lovecraft-ever-wrote.19724/page-44#post-10746665) and not wanting to destroy the world.)

Quote from: Lynn;1144881
What I find interesting is that the torch & pitchforks crowd ignore the handful of positive depictions of minorities, such as the doctor in "Cool Air" and the elderly Black couple living in the old Curwen house in the "Strange Case of Charles Dexter Ward."


Quote from: Omega;1145052
Or the minorities keeping the thing from the Shining Trapezohedron at bay with nightly vigils.

But of course racists see racism everywhere.


Plenty of Lovecraft's stories, like "The Dunwich Horror" and "Beyond the Wall of Sleep," depict white hillbillies as subhuman vermin too.

Quote from: Trond;1145180
I am watching the show right now. First question: are American movie makers capable of making movies with black folks without making it all about racism?

I find the view of the past here bizarre. Do they really think that if som black people went to the wrong town in the fifties white people would immediately start shooting? Or that virtually every conversation that black people had was about racism?

It's ironic, because there's a "Race Bechdel Test (https://citizenshipandsocialjustice.com/race-bechdel-test/)" that exists specifically to prevent movie makers from doing precisely this.

In order to pass the test, you need to have two or more named black characters talk to each other about something other than whites/racism. It's a very low bar, too.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 21, 2020, 12:11:41 PM
Quote from: BoxCrayonTales;1145718
Plenty of Lovecraft's stories, like "The Dunwich Horror" and "Beyond the Wall of Sleep," depict white hillbillies as subhuman vermin too.

In The Dunwich Horror, he also makes it a point to mention the "uncorrupted" Whateleys. He doesn't seem to have a problem with country people but he does seem to touch on themes of inbreeding.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Omega on August 22, 2020, 12:53:10 AM
Quote from: Lynn;1145841
In The Dunwich Horror, he also makes it a point to mention the "uncorrupted" Whateleys. He doesn't seem to have a problem with country people but he does seem to touch on themes of inbreeding.

He touches on it quite a bit. He also liked to show that old beliefs might have some basis in truth or actually be needed to ward off things from beyond. Time and again its the writings and rituals of ancient non-white people that end up somehow saving the day while 9 times out of 10 its the writings of whites that cause the current impending disaster.

But all people see is "hes Wacist!"
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Lynn on August 22, 2020, 12:32:53 PM
Quote from: Omega;1145964
He touches on it quite a bit. He also liked to show that old beliefs might have some basis in truth or actually be needed to ward off things from beyond. Time and again its the writings and rituals of ancient non-white people that end up somehow saving the day while 9 times out of 10 its the writings of whites that cause the current impending disaster.

But all people see is "hes Wacist!"

Amazing considering he postulated that white people are descendants of White apes...

https://www.hplovecraft.com/writings/texts/fiction/faj.aspx
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Spinachcat on August 23, 2020, 03:58:52 AM
Lovecraft Country will be the first Lovecraft inspired media that I won't watch.
It's insanely revisionist to the point of being bizarre. But hey, 2020.

As for the black victim narrative, I wonder how much of its being pushed for the masturbation of white liberals with their virtue signalling white knight fantasies vs. trying to convince black Americans they somehow live in the most racist place that's ever existed.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: GeekyBugle on August 28, 2020, 12:47:40 PM
What did you expect from Jordan "I don't see my self doing a movie with a white man as the lead" Peele?

Dude is a massive racist, therefore all white characters are gonna be Evil and all black characters are gonna be Perfectly Good and have armor plot.
Title: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Shrieking Banshee on August 28, 2020, 02:14:29 PM
Quote from: GeekyBugle;1146791
What did you expect from Jordan "I don't see my self doing a movie with a white man as the lead" Peele?

Dude is a massive racist, therefore all white characters are gonna be Evil and all black characters are gonna be Perfectly Good and have armor plot.

I find him a great meauring tool for wokeness in others. If they don't find him racist then they are a useful idiot tier of woke.
Title: Re: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Ratman_tf on September 03, 2020, 11:05:24 AM
I just like Shadenfreud.


https://www.jta.org/2020/09/01/culture/hbos-lovecraft-country-contains-a-plot-point-that-resembles-an-age-old-anti-semitic-lie-why#.X0_jHPbDLWs.twitter
Title: Re: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Shrieking Banshee on September 03, 2020, 12:16:16 PM
I just like Shadenfreud.


https://www.jta.org/2020/09/01/culture/hbos-lovecraft-country-contains-a-plot-point-that-resembles-an-age-old-anti-semitic-lie-why#.X0_jHPbDLWs.twitter (https://www.jta.org/2020/09/01/culture/hbos-lovecraft-country-contains-a-plot-point-that-resembles-an-age-old-anti-semitic-lie-why#.X0_jHPbDLWs.twitter)


Jews should stop being ok with anti-white discrimination overall.
Title: Re: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: Thornhammer on October 08, 2020, 12:14:05 AM
I was on vacation with The Missus this past weekend and happened to turn on the TV when episode 7 of this show was on. I have not seen any other episodes. So I'm gonna recap what I saw.

First, a white lady is doing Mythos-adjacent stuff, turning bodies into potions which allow her to transform and have sex with someone. The sex was in a previous episode. This was maybe two minutes of material, and is pretty much it for the episode as far as Cthulhu-style stuff goes. Nothing like getting all that dull, boring Lovecraft-related material out of the way right at the start, eh?

Then we have about twenty minutes of uninteresting (to me) character building. Maybe a half hour. Moving on because I don't want to rag on it. Just wasn't my thing.

Main character appears to be a female Sheldon Cooper and can do extremely complicated math in her head. We know this because math appears in the air. She's futzing with a machine. There are numbers that appear to be spatial coordinates, which show up a lot. I mean a LOT. Oh no! The police arrive because she is not supposed to be there. There is a fracas, the police shoot the machine which opens a gate and nobody had to sacrifice POW to do so. Or maybe the police did. I don't know. One got sucked into a random gate location, the other is shot and killed by the husband.

She gets sucked into the gate and winds up on Distant Alien Planet. Giant aliens in admittedly cool dark Iron Man and/or Tron (do kids today understand Tron? Let's just go with Iron Man) armor capture her, which is probably for the best when one is on an alien planet with no way of returning home.

Main character is thrown into a jail cell, where she finds herself totally nekkid but quickly finds clothes. Alien shows up without the Iron Man helmet, and turns out the alien is female and has the biggest, pointiest afro you've ever seen. It defies physics. Main character tries to math her way out and starts tearing up the cell and the table she was on. Sections of the table float because Space.

Alien woman shows up again and puts a stop to that nonsense, then sends the main character back in time without the benefit of DeLorean or Michael J. Fox, back to Paris in umpty ought something. She's doing a burlesque dance with a bunch of other women.  They get topless, she doesn't because she doesn't know the steps and was already completely nude earlier. Time passes and her dancing improves. No further nudity. Main character talks about how she hates white men and wants to kill them (that isn't paraphrasing, she actually says the words "I hate white men and want to kill them"). She gets sent further back in time to learn how to better kill white men, then gets to kill a bunch of Confederate soldiers with a sword.

She then returns to outer space in a very "what the 1950s thinks is the future" spaceship and outfit (complete with floating hoops) and has an I'm Every Woman, It's All In Me moment.

For the benefit of the show, I'm going to assume the aliens were the Great Race of Yith appearing in a form she'd appreciate. It is a very generous assumption, and warranted by absolutely nothing that I saw apart from "sent other character into the past."

So that was the episode.  Even more damning than being openly hostile towards my attention, you have a show called Lovecraft Country that can't be bothered to show me one fucking monster in an hour episode. I don't think that is too much to ask.
Title: Re: Review: Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff is a Good Jaffe
Post by: arcanuum on October 08, 2020, 12:34:29 AM
When I saw the beginning of the first episode of Lovecraft Country I noticed how the main characters father somehow knew that Lovecraft wrote that horrifically racist essay. But the problem with that is that almost no one knew about Lovecraft in the 1930s or 40s. Only his tight knit group of friends and associates knew his awesome books. Anyways I am not pleased with the constant shitting on Lovecraft and his work. I mean yes he was a Racist, but honestly so was everyone else in his era. So in summary, The SJWs need to realized that some of them will be considered horribly offensive in 50 years.