“What’s this batfleck that everybody’s talking about?”
I was slow to the news on my Twitter feed, but I figured it out pretty quickly: Ben Affleck was named to play Batman in the next Superman movie.
I immediately thought of a script for “Clark Kent Hunting,” with Affleck as a Bostonian Bruce Wayne. “Clark, every day I come and pick you up and we go to Justice League. We catch a few bad guys, have a few laughs, it’s great. But you know what the best part of my day is? The 10 seconds between when I pull up at the Fortress of Solitude and I get to your door and I think you won’t be there. No goodbye, no see ya later. You just flew off.”
People were mad that night, and putting together a petition in the morning to demand Affleck’s removal. I hope the petition said something like, “W, the undersigned, don’t like the person who will pretend to be a fictional character in a movie about a nonexistent city besieged by events that never happened. We’d like a different one.”
Fortunately, that had died down around Sunday, just in time for Miley Cyrus and the Video Music Awards. Her overly sexual dance with singer Robin Thicke sparked outrage, because Cyrus shouldn’t do that to a married man, and in front of Will Smith’s family and all of America.
Never mind that Thicke was a willing participant and received no flack, or that Smith has known for years about the content of the VMAs and took his kids anyway.
But what about the parents shocked to discover what their kids watch on MTV? Yeah, they’re the ones who grew up watching an MTV with Puck making AIDS jokes on “The Real World” and Beavis and Butthead set things on fire. Did they think when they turned 30, MTV decided to air “Davey and Goliath” cartoons instead?
I’m not going to get into a lecture about other stories that would have been more important to cover … because if I were to make a list of every story that would have been more important to cover it would have been a list of every other story.
It’s largely the fault of news networks that decided this was news. If you get a chance, read The Onion’s satirical letter, written as the editor of CNN.com justifying putting Cyrus in the top spot.
“We don’t just do a top story on the VMA performance and call it a day. No, no. We also throw in a slideshow called ‘Evolution of Miley,’ which, for those of you who don’t know, is just a way for you to mindlessly click through 13 more photos of Miley Cyrus. And if we get 500,000 of you to do that, well, 500,000 multiplied by 13 means we can get 6.5 million page views on that slideshow alone.
“Throw in another slideshow titled ‘6 “don’t miss” VMA moments,’ and it’s starting to look like a pretty good Monday, numbers-wise.
“Also, there are two videos — one of the event and then some two-minute clip featuring our ‘entertainment experts’ talking about the performance.”
But those strategies don’t work unless people misplace emotional attachment. Ugh … this is why we can’t have nice things.
Kevin Wilson is a columnist for Clovis Media Inc. He can be contacted at 763-3431, ext. 313, or by email: