This article acts as a sequel to a piece written about porn in Black Mirror last year, so I’d recommend taking a cheeky peek at that one over here before reading this one. There’s also major spoilers for series four throughout this article, and a trigger warning for discussion of sexual abuse, so careful with this, kids.
It’s 2018, it’s been over a month since Black Mirror season four was released, and I still have a concerning obsession with sex in Charlie Brooker’s sci-fi anthology series. Delving deeply into the in’s-and-out’s of these new episodes gives an insight into the accessibility of sexually deviant behaviour in the modern age – paraphilias such as voyeurism and BDSM exist in new forms now with so much online pornography and fan fiction floating around the net (bet Brooker would love to know what kind of antics he and David Mitchell get up to on Archive of Our Own, arguably the kinkiest fan fiction site out there). Black Mirror finds some really zanyways of exploring how technology allows its characters to bash one out in the most inappropriate and morally questionable ways possible.
All four of The Defenders have seen some crap. In fact, they all continue to get themselves into seriously messed up situations time and time again, and probably need a good therapy session. Yet, without their past traumatic experiences, Jessica Jones, Daredevil, Luke Cage and Iron Fist probably wouldn’t have discovered each other and teamed up to take down the Hand. So, should we be glad that they experienced such trauma? Of course not; that’s messed up. Nobody should have to deal with that. But, that’s exactly what happened, and now they’re stuck dealing with even more crap because the NYPD are way out of their depth. Fantastic.
Superhero team-ups are usually brought together by sharing ideologies, but Netflix’s band of misfits are brought together by their shared trauma, making for some interesting television.
So, on top what these guys deal with in their eight-episode Netflix superhero extravaganza, here’s how the Defenders’ dreadful lives link them to one another, and why that’s so important to the series.
Warning: Here’s the part where I let you know that there’s spoilers littered around this article, so be careful out there.
If you sat in the cinema theatre after watching Spider Man: Homecoming saying to yourself, “Wow, having Peter Parker fail so frequently throughout this film and clumsily navigate his way through dangerous missions really has a lot to say about how making mistakes can really be a strong learning experience for a young person to help them to find their calling in life and discover what their true core values are”, then you weren’t the only one, because that’s actually exactly what I was thinking.
When Emma Watson was cast as Belle for the live-action adaptation of Beauty And The Beast, it was pretty much confirmed that this new version of the well-loved story was going to have an underlying feminist message beneath it — and it certainly hasn’t failed to deliver just that. Amidst the controversies of the discussions about Stockholm syndrome, Emma Watson’s Vanity Fair shoot, and the introduction of Disney’s first openly gay character, another, particularly significant theme in the film was overlooked: the topic of education for girls.
So to start this off: I know Lovelace is not the only film out there to depict an abusive relationship on the big screen. I know that it’s not the most fantastically accurate representation of an abusive relationship out there. I know that it fails to address a lot of the abuse and controversy surrounding the story that the real Linda Lovelace – Linda Boreman – experienced in her own life.
If all the Oscar nominations are anything to go by, there’s a lot of hype surrounding La La Land at the moment. In particular, people seem to love Emma Stone’s character, Mia – and it doesn’t surprise me. Aside from having a sharp sense of humour and a set of insecurities many artists can relate to (self-doubt is strangely endearing), Mia is extremely comfortable showing interest in Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) in a few creative ways, e.g. requesting his band to play ‘I Ran’ by A Flock of Seagulls at a pool party as a way of mocking the serious musician.
If you don’t get why people keep talking about how great La La Land is, go and see it. If you have seen it, and you still don’t get it, keep reading this and I’ll do my best to explain it to you. Grab a snack, settle down in a chair and let me tell you a little bit about being a daydreamer.
With Sherlock being one of the BBC’s most popular drama TV programs, there is, quite shockingly, a lot of drama in it. From the face-off between Sherlock and the murderous cabbie in the very first episode, ‘A Study In Pink’ to that horrifying moment concluding the series’ latest episode, ‘The Six Thatchers’, we’re no strangers to shitting our pants at the intense events Holmes and Watson find themselves in during their ludicrous adventures.
There are some other moments during Sherlock that are undoubtedly dramatic, but… unusually so. Here’s a brief, spoiler-free look at the times Sherlock and John ended up in some unexpectedly action-packed circumstances in the first three series of this quirky crime drama.
How far would you go to save the lives of your family? The latest addition to the Star Wars universe, Rogue One, answers this question with an extreme response through the actions of Galen Erso: Force your family into hiding, place a fatal flaw in the plans to the Death Star and risk your life for the daughter you haven’t seen in 15 years. Is this one step too far, or a reasonable amount of steps in the right direction?
So Doctor Strange is a trippy film to say the least, boasting exploration of different dimensions and a general questioning of reality. It’s an intriguing new approach to an MCU film and raises existential questions regarding careers, relationships and death. It goes beyond the usual “who am I? Why am I here?” and into the realm of “what can I do with myself now? Who can I trust in this world?” when Stephen Strange, a man who’s so good at his job he can get away with being an arrogant asshole about it, can no longer pursue his occupation as a neurosurgeon when his hands are severely damaged in a car accident. From this point onward, we see him having to completely change his perception of reality in order to continue his life in the direction he wants it to go in – and in the process ends up pursuing his newfound skill in the mystic arts instead. As you do.