Talkin' Childhood Relived, Batman, Doctor Who, and yes, Baseball

The other day I finished Rejuvenile: Kickball, Cartoons, Cupcakes and the Reinvention of the American Grown Up by Christopher Noxon, an interesting book about how a lot of American adults seem much less traditionally, well, adult than in years past. Naturally, it got me to thinking a lot about my own rejuvenile tendencies, and I was going to write up a big entry about it here, but I ended up thinking better of it. I mean, it should be pretty obvious to anyone who's been reading this blog for more than, say, five minutes, that not only do I fit this particular profile, but that I fit it to the point that I could probably get away with listing my occupation as "Manchild" when it comes time to renew my passport. Why belabor such an obvious point?

There are three important things about this book that I wish to pass on, however:
  1. Do not go into this book expecting a hardhitting look at the increasing number of adults who don't cast aside the joys of childhood, a scathing condemnation of them, nor any sort of assertion that these people are What's Wrong With Society Today. Noxon makes no secret of his own rejuvenalia, and often refers to those who express their displeasure with this as "harrumphing codgers."
  2. Please also bear in mind that he does not use this book as a forum to make excuses for his own behavior, he is merely documenting the various aspects of a phenomenon, both pro and con, and for the most part, does so pretty fairly. He does seem unduly harsh in playing the "I'm a more acceptable geek than you" card in discussing folks dressed in costume at Comic-Ccon, though, going so far as to lump them in with furries, plushies, and assorted other fetishists. Very unfair to paint the entire cosplay culture with that brush, I thought; you wanna tell the Elvis Trooper guy he's no different than a plushie? Hell no - he'd kick your ass with the combined powers of The Force and The King, chummy.
  3. This book left me with a profound desire to get a game of kickball going. Who's up for it? I'm thinking we could get an awesome ECB* vs. ACAPCWOVCCAOE** match-up going.

On the whole, a good read. Give it a chance if you're so inclined.

Hey, have you skipped out on the vast majority of Batman comics for the last two decades because, well, let's face it, they were mostly bad Frank Miller imitations and you were never totally interested in reading about a Batman who was such an insufferable prick most of the time, but now you're kind of curious to catch up on what you missed because the comics are actually kind of good again? Well, Scott Kurtz of PvP did a Batman story for his kinda-sorta-but-not-really 24 Hour Comic Day project this year, and he managed to distill two decades' worth of bad Batman stories into 6 pages of utter brilliance called "My Parents Are Dead." Seriously, if you haven't read Batman since 1986, this is pretty much all you missed.

Via This Is Pop Culture - The new Doctor Who action figures are finally going to be getting American distribution starting around December, which makes me very happy I never shelled out the ridiculous eBay prices for the Doctor and/or a Cyberman. Though I'd still love to get my hands on the Regeneration set they did so I could get a 9th Doctor figure, too.

The new season of Doctor Who, by the way, is all kinds of excellent so far, and easily my favorite thing on TV right now. I had some fears about David Tennant early on, if only because Christopher Eccleston was so good as the Doctor, but all that went right out the window by the end of The Christmas Invasion (and any lingering doubts were pretty much obliterated by halfway point of New Earth). I'm enjoying the unique touches he's bringing to the role so far, but I also think it's pretty cool that in some ways, he's similar enough to Eccleston's Doctor that, for once, it's easy to see that both men are really the same guy. Usually, Doctor-to-Doctor transitions are so jarringly different that it's easy to lose sight of the fact that these 10 guys are actually all the same person, but this time around, it's easy for both the audience and the traveling companion-of-the-moment to see the truth. And I can't help but think this makes the whole regeneration concept so much easier for new fans to understand - it took me a long time to grasp the "No, really, these vastly different people are all the same person, honest" concept when I first started watching the show back in grade school.

I'm a Red Sox fan, so naturally, I was happy as hell to see the Detroit Tigers eliminate the New York Yankees from the American League playoffs. I smiled. I laughed. I may have even done a small dance. I'm not proud... well, no, I actually am, kinda. I can happy dance with the best of 'em. But I digress. Yankee misfortune tends to be a good thing in my book, but even I think it's stupid to blame manager Joe Torre and threaten to get rid of him. The man revived the Yankee Juggernaut, helping return them to the dominance they had for most of the 20th century. Even in the years they don't win (or even go to) the World Series, they're still consistently in contention. That's good managing right there. You don't want to sacrifice that for the sake of establishing public scapegoat. So while I don't like the man's team due to some ancient baseball bloodfeud I was indoctrinated into at birth, I still respect the hell out of Joe Torre as both a manager and a man, and I think firing him would be a huge mistake.

I wouldn't mind seeing them kick A-Rod to the curb, though. That guy's a punk who hasn't delivered. Way to bat 8th, A-Rod! You earned it!

(And no, I'm not just saying that in the hopes that Boston tries to pick him up again. They've got enough problems to deal with right now without adding that guy to the mix. Now if the Yanks wanted to unload Jeter or Matsui on Boston for some inexplicable reason, that'd be a different story... I can't wait until the day the wind up out of the pinstripes so I can actually root for them, because they're both a little bit good.)

One last reminder that my current batch of eBay auctions end Tuesday night!

*East Coast Bloggaz
**Associated Comics and Pop Culture Webloggers of Ventura County, CA, and Outlying Environs

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