Wednesday, March 24, 2010

"American Splendor"

Check it out - I finally figured out how to post under my own name. Well....Jason figured it out. I had to get a gmail account, which sucks because I have a really good hotmail address, and I'm afraid that gmail is going to take over the world. I really do like my gmail account name too, but it's far longer and will require more explanation than I want to give to everyone.

What does all that have to do with "American Splendor?" Nothing. Nothing at all. Of course, it parallels exactly what Harvey Pikar did in is comic novels - editorializing his own life for the enjoyment and consumption of other people. It's the precursor to blogs.

I think all of us are at least a little bit narcissistic enough to have thought about writing a book or making a movie out of our lives. I know that I have. I have dismissed such thoughts as being silly and arrogant, but after watching "American Splendor" I think maybe I was wrong. Surely my life is or has been as interesting as Harvey Pikar, right?

And that's what I took from the film. We all live interesting lives, even those of us who are quite boring and/or have few hobbies/interests, etc. The fact that your life maybe not full of drama or excitement does not necessarily mean it's not interesting to others. Admittedly, I have never read the comics "American Splendor," but based on what the film showed, Pikar's life was not all that exciting or special, yet it was interesting. Would my life be as intriguing if snippets were chronicled with pictures of me that make me look like an ogre? Who knows, but maybe.


Jason Pyles, Movie Critic said...


I thought your Gmail address was related to (or inspired by) Daniel Day-Lewis's "Bill the Butcher" character from Scorsese's "Gangs of New York."

Regarding your last paragraph, I think the inexplicable success of reality TV proves that concepts like "The Truman Show" and "Edtv" are veritable possibilities.

(And not that anybody cares, but the only two reality TV shows that I've ever found remotely entertaining are "Project Greenlight" and, I'm a little embarrassed to admit, "Project Runway.")


Andy Howell said...

it's andy.thebutcher.howell because I gave myself a nickname in billiards. I'm "The Butcher" because I can slice so thin....or because I screw up even an easy shot. Double Entendre.