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Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and the Floor Is Yours: Topics Are Open

Posted on | December 18, 2011 | 45 Comments

Have a good one everyone. If anyone wants to talk about stuff – the floor is open.

Seeing Mission Impossible this Sat. We’ll see if it’s worth the hype. And good on Tom Cruise for having a black actress co-star and for the second time!!!

🙂

Drink up, be merry and be very very good to yourself.

 


 

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45 Responses to “Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and the Floor Is Yours: Topics Are Open”

  1. Sophia
    December 15th, 2011 @ 10:41 PM

    Good for little crazy Tom Cruise. I’ll see the movie for Jeremy Renner. But only after I watch “Shame” with Michael Fassbender and Nicole Beharie. I am loving seeing black women star as the love interest in both prestigious and blockbuster movies.
    Rumours are swirling around Fassbender and Beharie btw. He’s a bit of a slut though so it’s likely nothing more than a set romance.

    GoldenAh: I like his kind of crazy. I’m wracking my brain. I think I’ll write a blog post about that (promises, promises), because all the blockbusters this year did not have one (okay, maybe one) black actress in the lead. Hopefully, before the year closes out. Do a black actress movie wrap-up. I’ve been meaning to, but life gets in the way. 🙂

    Fassbender is a fine looking man. Who can blame him for being a ho? 😀

    I have to check out some movies with Jeremy Renner, because I honestly don’t know anything about him.

    Thanks for stopping by, Sophia. 🙂

  2. trish
    December 16th, 2011 @ 2:37 AM

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

    GoldenAh: Thank you, Trish! Same to you.

    Take good care of yourself. 😀

  3. Daphne
    December 16th, 2011 @ 12:05 PM

    Happy Holidays to all! I hope everyone reading will have safe travels, get lots of presents, enjoy good food, and have the opportunity to spend time with loved ones.

    Goldenah, any travel plans for the holidays? I think I recall you live in the same area as your family?

    My family is coming to Florida – I’m in Tampa Bay, and we’ll spend a few days in Orlando. Not my ideal vacation – we’re all warm and balmy down here, and it doesn’t feel like Xmas when you can bust out shorts and a t-shirt. I mean, the song doesn’t say, “I’m dreaming of a BALMY Christmas” now, does it? But then, I’m not a huge fan of Florida, so I’m a tad grumpy!

    I’m seriously thinking of planning a trip for next Thanksgiving or Xmas, even if it is solo. My family won’t be too thrilled with it, but I’ve been ready to switch it up for a long time – tired of the same old, same old. And since they either can’t afford to travel, or don’t find it valuable, they won’t be able to accompany me. Ah well.

    GoldenAh: No travel plans. 🙁

    I cannot bear the thought of going to an airport during this time of year. I don’t know what I’ll do when it comes time to really go somewhere. I may take the train or drive. I loathe the TSA, customs and immigration people at the airports. I cannot stand any of them. They serve no purpose. I miss the old days of getting to an airport 30 minutes before take-off, running to get on the plane, and no a**h*&e pervert or authority freak needed to cop a feel, see us naked, or steal your water (or expensive items). Ah, the good old days. (I cannot stop ranting about this topic.) 😀

    Yup. I live in NJ. My folks are a few minutes down the road, got uncles in this state and other relatives in the wider region.

    I wanted to live in FL at one time, near Daytona Beach (not sure why), but I like the changing of seasons. Although I am getting really sick of the snow. I’m like “What global warming – have they seen how much it snows out here?” Nearly every year, I’ve had days where I was trapped in the house by the amount of snow. Ugh.

    I want to go away next Xmas too! I’m thinking, can I do it? I say Australia, but then I look at the flight time. I mean that’s leaving on a Monday and arriving on Wednesday. And it’s rare to get straight flights, these airlines are always breaking it up into multiple trips. But I’ve got that list. Gotta do it. 🙂

    I encourage you to go somewhere Daphne. You’ll have a blast. I’m always leery of a trip, but once I get there I’m gonna have fun even if it kills me. 😀

    I love Disney World. I’m such a big kid.

    Happy Holidays to you as well.

  4. MsMellody
    December 16th, 2011 @ 10:12 PM

    Merry Christmas Everyone!!!

    I just came in from our condo building’s Christmas mingle and party!!

    My husband and I had a fantastic time. I do hope everyone here get’s out to a party or two this Holiday season.

    Enjoy, be safe. Travel and have a great time!!
    Happy Holidays!!

    GoldenAh: Happy Holidays to you as well, MsMellody. Merry Christmas.

    I’m going to try not to drink too much this year. 😀

  5. Daphne
    December 17th, 2011 @ 3:04 PM

    Fassbender is a fine looking man. Who can blame him for being a ho?

    Bwah! Fassbender doesn’t do it for me anymore, but I understand the appeal.

    Jeremy Renner is pretty awesome. He did a relatively unknown movie with Gabrielle Union called Neo Ned – it was interesting.

    I should probably be interested in Shame, but I have a confession: I’m getting nitpicky about movies that have black female love interests who are opposite white men. Why? Because I perceive some disturbing subtext at times when white men/black women are romantically involved on screen – as in, white men on the “fringe” of society or otherwise “abnormal” or “quirky” date black women (see: Neo Ned, as an example). To me, that’s not really normalizing the pairings, but others’ mileage may vary on that.

    Say what you will about Tom Cruise, but that he’s featured black women in 2 out of 4 of his Mission Impossible movies – which are high-profile blockbusters and Ethan Hunt is the lead and alpha-male who is attracted to them – says a lot more. From a normalizing perspective, anyway. Of course, I may be jumping the gun with the latest movie – I’ve yet to see it, and Tom’s character may not be romantically involved with Paula Patton’s character.

    Of course, to play devil’s advocate – he’s also chosen biracial black actresses rather than someone like a Kerry Washington or Nia Long. Still, I really like Paula, she seems so down-to-earth in her interviews, so I am pleased she’s building a nice career for herself.

    To your point about black female leads in films this year – according to Box Office Mojo, none of the Top 10 movies featured black women, and The Help is number 11 so far. Not exactly encouraging. Perhaps 2012 will be a better year.

    Back to travel –

    Goldenah, like you, I’m not a huge fan of flying long distances. But as you mentioned, once you arrive, it’s wonderful. I’ve had Australia and New Zealand on my mind for years now, so next year might be the year. On the other hand, Europe ain’t a bad bet, either, and I can cover more ground and countries in continental Europe. I’ve got time to think it through.

    GoldenAh: I saw the movie. I don’t think you will be disappointed with Paula Patton’s role. She is the star. She’s a key role in the flick. My gf and I liked it. Simon Pegg is always funny, and the movie doesn’t sit still. And Tom is looking good too. 🙂

    I don’t know if Renner adds much to the movie, but they needed another “muscle / brain” as contrast to Ethan’s character. And he fits in with the group.

    Love your observation about the “nut job” or “freaky” white guy who’s into black women. So on point!! Of course, he has to be crazy to like love a sister. Right? By the way, a black man made Shame.

    The alpha-males in this MI movie find Paula Patton beautiful. They tell her so and treat her like she is worthy, while letting her do her thing. I may see this film a second time. ‘Cause I am into films where a black women (okay, half-black :D) gets the kind of respect and props you’d normally see going to some washed out looking boring pale faced waif who beats a man twice her size (Becky the Vampire Slayer Syndrome), which makes me sick. But like you, I wont run out to see any film where they mislead you about what’s going on with the black woman character and the “off-the-rails” white man that digs her.

    And based on the casting for Batman, I don’t know if I can stand to watch Anne-what’s-her-face play catwoman. That casting decision was either cowardice, laziness or they just know don’t how to make the women characters interesting. And I suspect it is the latter, because Katie Holmes was a bore too. Maybe that’s one of the weaknesses of Nolan’s writing and perspective. Some men (and even women) are unable to write women characters well, because they put so much energy into the men.

    Love your feedback as usual, gave me some stuff to think about. 😀

    I don’t blame you for looking at Europe, it is easier to get to. That’s why I always go there and haven’t seen the other side of the planet yet. I start fidgeting just thinking of a 12 hour plane ride. 🙂

  6. Andrea
    December 18th, 2011 @ 5:53 PM

    Happy Holiday and Merry Christmas to all!

    I have a topic that has been bothering me for the last few weeks. Hell’s Kitchen, and other “reality” TV shows, casting the craziest Black women they can find. What is that about?

    I have been watching the re-runs of Hell’s Kitchen’s current season, and this last bunch of wanna-be chefs includes a Black woman named Elise. And just like every other BW I’ve ever seen on a “reality” TV show, she’s gets along with no one. No matter how hard her fellow chefs try to be nice to her, she basically makes working with her a miserable experience.

    Now, at first I thought Elise was just obnoxious and incapable of trusting anyone, but now I am absolutely certain that she’s suffering from some sort of mental disorder. I’ve seen her behavior in many people I’ve known over the years, who grew up in foster care, which makes me suspect that this is how these shows find BW contestants. I’m curious to hear what you ladies think about this.

    GoldenAh: I used to really enjoy the cooking chef contest shows, until I realized that they follow the formula you mentioned. I’ve never seen a black woman win. Maybe there were? I’ve seen one or two who did rather well. I think her name was Tracy. Once in the final rounds they start to dislike everything she cooks. They had some kinda super-chef reunion. She makes it as far as the final rounds again. Then poof! She’s making rookie mistakes and her cooking isn’t good enough. Yeah, right.

    I think they’re all fixed. They know who they want as the winner, it’s determined by time casting is completed. I’ve seen people who can barely cook or with a so-so personality win. I hate every last one of those programs. No one could pay me to watch ’em. 😀

    Ever since MTV (Viacom / Paramount) gave us the reality TV show “Real World” – the angry nutty stereotypical black woman is here to stay. Unless their advertisers are held accountable. That character is a staple for most of these TV reality shows. That’s where the bread is buttered. It’s obviously a ratings winner. I bet casting agents, directors and producers tell these black women that the crazier she acts the better. I know other people act up, but they are viewed as individuals. We never are.

    Sheesh. Nice, emotionally stable and normal black women don’t exist. Think about it sometimes when you have a conversation with some people. Don’t they act surprised when you talk about the regular stuff you do? I have. People want to pretend that TV / media doesn’t play a role in how we’re viewed. Hours of that daily brainwashing has an effect, they know it, we all know it.

  7. Daphne
    December 18th, 2011 @ 7:09 PM

    Andrea, I don’t watch Hell’s Kitchen, but I understand where you’re coming from. VH1 is particularly notorious for featuring low-class black women. Granted, reality TV consistently draws the borderline personalities (whether real or fake), as that what gets you screentime. The relatively normal black women are usually rarely seen or heard from – heaven forbid the viewers see a black woman who isn’t sistah-gurling or sassifying or “keeping it real” all over the place.

    To be fair, the above behaviors aren’t inherently bad, but it’s also not representative of all, or perhaps even most, black women. Most black women, I believe, particularly those who have to work/socialize with non-blacks, but especially whites, have an internal switch, and aren’t like that all that time. I still remember the classy lady chef, Vanessa, from Rocco’s TV show on Bravo – the first season aired a few months ago, but she was a sight for sore eyes, let me tell you. Particularly given that she was competing against this other woman who…had issues. I’ll leave it at that.

    But your comment made me think of something related. This season of The Amazing Race, which recently ended, had a black sibling team (brother and sister). Unfortunately for the sister, Jennifer was her name, there were glimpses of “stereotypical black woman” and she got into an argument with her brother once or twice very early in the season. Now maybe because I have siblings, and that I thought Justin, the brother, was rather passive-aggressive, but their arguments didn’t appear THAT bad to me. I read the forums over at Television Without Pity, and dude….those posters immediately villainized her, even though she’s nowhere near the worst of the female contestants featured in the many seasons of the show. Also, there was a black married couple – the husband was a former NFL player, and the wife, since she wasn’t some tiny little thing (hello, the woman birthed four children), was immediately disregarded as useless (though to be fair, I think she won over a lot of people as the season continued). Meanwhile, there was a white woman who, while certainly not terrible, was very passive aggressive with her partner throughout most of the race. For example, her partner is her boyfriend, and whenever he got frustrated, she would immediately yell, “Don’t yell at me!” even though he never raised his voice at her. She was actually pretty useless to her partner, but it was rarely commented on.

    It was very strange, yet several of the male posters commented on how hot she was. I didn’t see it, but then I’m not a man. I thought the minority women on the show – the two black women and an Asian woman, were actually more attractive, but again…I’m not a man. There was a fair amount vitriol towards the Asian woman as well, whose partner was her white fiance. Granted, she was a bit high-strung, but again, not that bad. It was all very interesting to read the forum posts and read what I perceived as racially motivated subtext there.

    Anyway, long post, but I suspect many TV producers as well as viewers are more “comfortable” with black women and girls characterized a certain way. It’s usually fairly subtle these days, so there is always that plausible deniability factor (also known as gaslighting, heh).

  8. Daphne
    December 18th, 2011 @ 7:58 PM

    And Tom is looking good too.

    Hey, despite the odd-ball jumping on the couch stuff from a few years back, I’ve always thought he was an attractive man. Short, mind you, but attractive. 🙂

    I’ve thoroughly enjoyed all of the Mission Impossible movies, so I’ll be seeing it with my sister next weekend. Looking forward to it!

    Right? By the way, a black man made Shame.

    I saw pictures of Fassbender with Steve McQueen, and I admit it: I was surprised. I knew that Fassbender paired up with the same director for a movie called Hunger (he was critically acclaimed for that role as well), but with a name like Steve McQueen, I wasn’t expecting a black man, you know? Guess he’s black Irish. 😉

    And based on the casting for Batman, I don’t know if I can stand to watch Anne-what’s-her-face play catwoman.

    Yeah, I know what you mean! When I heard Anne Hathaway was cast, I thought…huh? Opposite Christian Bale? Word? I mean, Christian is kind of intense, and Anne…is not. I was confused, as there were any number of actresses who I feel can hold their own against an actor like Christian. Anne wasn’t one of them, but perhaps I’ll be surprised. Frankly, I’m not itching to see the final (I think) installment – I think it’s too much in the pot. You’ve got Catwoman, Bane, and I think another villain, and I might have heard that (younger) Ra’s Al Ghul is returning. That’s…a lot going on. Sometimes, simplicity is better.

    And regarding Nolan, the man has NO idea how to write or cast women for his films. I’ve watched several of his movies, and I’ve never enjoyed or connected with any of the female characters, save for Hilary Swank in Insomnia. He probably shouldn’t feature women prominently in his films at all, but he’s too high-profile now. If he tried to pull that ish, NOW would probably be all over him, not to mention the (white) Feminist blogosphere rising up in righteous indignation. Nope, wouldn’t fly. Anyway, I’m glad he hasn’t bothered to cast a black woman in a prominent role in his films. I’d rather be ignored by some rather than half-azzedly thrown a bone. That’s just me, though.


    GoldenAh
    : I agree: do us right, or leave us out of it. I can watch all white, all Asian, all everybody else films without feeling left out. I certainly don’t want a black woman included if she’s going to play some stereotypical role.

    I used to watch those Westerns / old War movies, long before political correctness required white women, and they made some awesome all male films. I agree: Nolan would be better served leaving them out entirely.

    Heh. Every time I see the name Steve McQueen I think of that handsome blond roughneck who slapped Ali McGraw in “Bullit”. It was a damn funny scene, but no guy could get away with that today, unless she was totally nuts, and Ali was a simpering little thing in that film. You’re right, those white feminists complain about everything. They cannot even let Zoe Saldana be a female star of Star Trek. Those bitches asked JJ Abrams to include “women” in the sequel(s) as though Zoe isn’t one. They never say a word about all these other films where one white woman is the sole starring chick.

    Whenever men write about powerful male characters, and they fail on women characters, I think they should turn some of that writing over to good female screenwriters. Or at least to men who understand women better.

    I hear you on the simplicity: Batman makes me think of these Korean, British and International series I watch online. They make great compelling movie-like material that lasts up to 15 to 30 episodes. Back in the old days network TV used to air mini-series in the same manner. I think Batman would have been a perfect fit for that format. ‘Cause Nolan’s writing is just too intense and complicated for even three very long long long movies. 😀

  9. Daphne
    December 18th, 2011 @ 8:09 PM

    Also, separate travel note:

    If I could take a train to Australia/New Zealand, I totally would! Would take longer, but the trip would be much more scenic, and at least you can walk around and not feel like a stuffed sausage. The Orient Express is on my bucket list – it’s pretty expensive, but I’d have no problem paying for the experience. And service. The cabins are ridiculously luxurious. Better start saving up. 🙂

    GoldenAh: I remember a movie about it, but I’ll confess I didn’t know that it was still in existence. I’m not even sure which country it runs in. 😀

    Cananda has a scenic cross country train route(s). I’ve always considered doing that, but that’s really not something I’d want to do alone.

    You know, the more we talk about Aussy Land and NZ, the more I actually look forward to going. It may be the push I require. 🙂

  10. Andrea
    December 19th, 2011 @ 2:44 AM

    “I used to really enjoy the cooking chef contest shows, until I realized that they follow the formula you mentioned. I’ve never seen a black woman win. Maybe there were? I’ve seen one or two who did rather well. I think her name was Tracy. Once in the final rounds they start to dislike everything she cooks. They had some kinda super-chef reunion. She makes it as far as the final rounds again. Then poof! She’s making rookie mistakes and her cooking isn’t good enough. Yeah, right.

    I think they’re all fixed. They know who they want as the winner, it’s determined by time casting is completed. I’ve seen people who can barely cook or with a so-so personality win. I hate every last one of those programs. No one could pay me to watch ‘em.”
    ~GoldenAh

    I think they’re fixed too. If someone has talent it doesn’t suddenly fade away. It’s completely implausible. On Hell’s Kitchen, Elise isn’t making cooking mistakes (yet), just being a huge pain in the backsides of her teammates.

    I remember a very nice BW in either the first or second season of Hell’s Kitchen who chef Ramsay liked so much, he actually helped her get a position at a fancy restaurant, after the season ended. And I believe she left before finals too. She was very personable and talented, in Gordon Ramsay’s opinion anyway. This new season was a huge surprise as far as the depiction of BW goes. I hope they decide to go back to their former casting criteria.

    “The relatively normal black women are usually rarely seen or heard from – heaven forbid the viewers see a black woman who isn’t sistah-gurling or sassifying or “keeping it real” all over the place.”
    ~Daphne

    One of my friends loves those Housewives of… shows, and she said that the first season of the Atlanta one had a very sensible, classy BW on it and they got rid of her, because she wouldn’t act like an immature idiot and fight with the crazy one over anything and everything. Btw, I saw the crazy one on Dr. Drew a few weeks ago, and she seemed sane. Maybe she’s only contextually crazy. Or crazy for cash. Lol.

    “I still remember the classy lady chef, Vanessa, from Rocco’s TV show on Bravo – the first season aired a few months ago, but she was a sight for sore eyes, let me tell you. Particularly given that she was competing against this other woman who…had issues. I’ll leave it at that.”
    ~Daphne

    I no longer subscribe to cable, but I will definintely see if Hulu has it. It’s good that Bravo doesn’t feel the need to stereotype or “race bait” for ratings. They always have mentaly stable and talented BW fashion designers on Project Runway as well. I’m proud of them for that. I remember one TV critic referring to the BW from the first season, who made it to the finals, as “angelic”. That won’t be happening with the BW cast in reality TV shows on FOX, CBS or any other major network anytime soon.

    “Meanwhile, there was a white woman who, while certainly not terrible, was very passive aggressive with her partner throughout most of the race. For example, her partner is her boyfriend, and whenever he got frustrated, she would immediately yell, “Don’t yell at me!” even though he never raised his voice at her.”
    ~Daphne

    I thought it was just my mom who did this. If you don’t agree with her point of view you’re yelling at her. Lol.

    “I saw the movie. I don’t think you will be disappointed with Paula Patton’s role. She is the star. She’s a key role in the flick. My gf and I liked it. Simon Pegg is always funny, and the movie doesn’t sit still. And Tom is looking good too.”
    ~GoldenAh

    Tom Cruise looks amazing! I can hardly believe he’s 50 years old. He looks as young as Ashton Kutcher, and he’s better looking. I can’t wait to see that movie. I loved the other three, especially #2. Me and my boyfriend were just talking about going to see it on Christmas Eve.

    I am so glad that Tom Cruise is in control of his films, because you know if the average Hollyweird studio was in control, Paula Patton’s character would have been made a female eunuch of sorts. Or they would have hired that girl from Precious or Monique
    .

    GoldenAh: I was never a big fan of Tom Cruise when he was younger. That cockiness got on my nerves. But he has a good presence (as a serious, solid adult) in his films now. He really looks good. And I respect his hustle. Watching this film, you can tell he worked hard at it. 🙂

    I gotta tell you, for me, Paula Patton was just perfect in this film. I LOVE seeing a black woman do her thing and still be feminine. She hit the right note(s).



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