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June 1997, Week 2


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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 11 Jun 1997 12:22:56 -0500
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        Another animated incarnation of a Barbie-type is Cynthia, the
much-abused doll alternately loved and hated by shrew-in-training
Angelica, on Nickelodeon's *Rugrats.*  Angelica seems to have an
obsession with tormenting Cynthia's once-lustrous and flowing locks,
which have now been pared to what can only be described as retro-punk.
        The auto commercial containing a Barbie-type is by Nissan, and
appears to feature a model no longer in production, the 3000ZX;  today's
actual Barbie would probably feel more *au courant* in a Pathfinder (I'm
still a fan of her pink Austin-Healey 3000 from the sixties, a good choice
for nostalgic "boomer Barbie," which is sure to come).  Another of the
carmaker's commercials implies that telepathic dogs prefer Pathfinders,
        *Kablam* on Nickelodeon has been mentioned in this thread with
regard to *Action League Now," a nineties reworking of *Mr. Bill*
allied with paranoia over government power, using an assortment of
marginally competent action heroes, including one who is, in the series'
words, "butt naked."  Hosted by animated teenagers Henry and June (I
doubt these names were plucked from thin air), this program features some of
the most imaginative animation around.
                               William Lafferty
Department of Theatre Arts                           [log in to unmask]
Wright State University                           office (937) 775-4581 or 3072
Dayton, OH  45435-0001  USA                            facsimile (937) 775-3787
"The universe was once conceived almost as a vast preserve, landscaped for
heroes, plotted to provide them the appropriate adventures.  The rules were
known and respected, the adversaries honorable, the oracles articulate and
precise as the directives of a six-lane parkway.  Errors of weakness or vanity
led, with measured momentum, to the tragedy which resolved everything.  Today,
the rules are ambiguous, the adversary is concealed in aliases, the oracles
broadcast a babble of contradictions."
                                  --- Maya Deren, from her notes for *At Land*
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