September 30th, 2003

breaking bad

Thank you god, thank you so bloody much

Nick has an amusing rant about the top ten sitcoms list. I too found the inclusion of Seinfeld inexplicable. I find many popular US sitcoms to be absolute dreck, but I suppose this may be cultural. It's not that the situations are unfamiliar to me, it's that they seem so obvious and the jokes so easy to anticipate, that when they come you think 'why did you bother?'.

I can't bear 'Friends' or 'Sex and the City' for the same reason. I've sat down to watch them innumerable times, thinking 'I should give this a chance' and I have to switch them off within a few minutes. Now Bilko and the Simpsons are absolutely brilliant, and the cultural chasm doesn't seem to be a problem. Futurama would be another example, though it's not on the list.

My top ten live-action sitcoms

Fawlty Towers
Blackadder (esp. IV)
Red Dwarf
Father Ted
Black Books
Porridge
Spaced
Bilko
Reginald Perrin
Dad's Army
breaking bad

Left and right hands of reason

Ken McLeod is ranting about SF again. He doesn't rate 'The Dispossessed' (which I actually like a lot)

What SF is fundamentally about is not the Individual versus Society, or Society versus Society, but humanity in the universe.SF needn't thereby lose in human relevance and universality, because the situation it posits is both objectively true and universal to the human being, as a knowing subject confronting a knowable object.


And I was thinking KM's phrase (underlined) is almost the textbook expression of an ENTJ person approaching the world with aggressive confidence, and how many male SF writers must be ENTJ. I think of them as the right hand of reason.

As an ENTP, the left hand of reason, I prefer to read about the 'questioning subject confronting the tantalisingly unknowable object'. But I agree, like I said before, that inter-personal matters, within a context which is mappable on to our own, are not the be-all and end-all of fiction.

But also that Ursula Le Guin is a better writer, and produces more challenging fiction IMHO than any of the right hand of reason crowd.