Realizing that his shamelessly rambling, unedited once-a-week diatribes were insufficient to combat the plague of hipster criticism–a pernicious influence which poses a grave, Godless threat to our contemporary aesthetic culture–Armond White underwent a state-of-the-art operation some years ago in which DNA was extracted from his colon and used to create a loyal-to-the-end sidekick, Matt Zoller Seitz. The operation was something less than a complete success–Seitz inherited his “father’s” penchant for repetitive, bludgeoning invective, but with none of daddy’s (admittedly rare) flashes of insight. Nevertheless, here was a valuable hipster-fighting tool, a Robin to White’s Batman, Bucky to his Captain America, Short Round to his Indiana Jones. Reading their lumps of ham-handed vitriol side-by-side in the NY Press, one can almost picture them riding into battle, Armond revving the motorcycle, Seitz holding on for dear life in the sidecar. And though Mr.White may hog his share of the spotlight here, Reverseblog would like to take a moment to revel in the subtler pleasures of Matt Zoller Seitz who, this week in the Press, served up the following doozies in his review of George Lucas’ latest steaming CGI loaf:
“[Lucas’] knack for balancing menace, mayhem, slapstick and sentiment within a single sequence rivals Hitchcock, Spielberg and Kurosawa.”
Oh, dear. He’s off and running.
“…they edge physically closer to rivers of lava symbolizing the unchecked passions that made Anakin a candidate for corruption; by duel’s end, the magma will disfigure Anakin’s body just as his dark feelings disfigured his goodness.”
(wipes aside tears of cynical, hipster laughter)
“Yet Lucas compensates with images of uncanny beauty and sadness. Only hipster critics would resist the director’s loving shout-outs to E.T ., Gone with the Wind ,The Seventh Seal and Apocalypse Now…”
Ah, and there they are, finally. Hipster critics, so-called–The Empire against which Armond and Matt’s rag-tag band of renegades are the our only hope. Some readers may ask: “Who are these hipster critics? I want names!” In brief, their numbers include anyone and everyone who doesn’t kowtow to A.W.’s arbitrary, wobbly party line, which involves a lot of willfully outrageous, paradoxical voguing. Blockbusters are subversive! Indie darlings are conservative! The critically acclaimed is a dead-end, the critically ignored glows with Renoir-esque humanity! And the star of every review, even Seitz’s, is Armond White, the only one who gets it right… Is this the highest calling of criticism, trying to brand any reader with a divisive opinion as a pretentious ponce with a major cool complex whose tastes render them a pariah? Reading White or Seitz, the premier highbrow apologists for multiplex schlock, I always remember a debate I had in my 8th grade band class.
“Green Day are the best punk band ever,” some jackass kid insisted.
“No, they’re shit,” I correctly replied.
“But ‘Dookie’ sold like three million copies… What, do you think you’re smarter than everyone else?”
“When Obi-Wan and Anakin lay into each other, their whirling light sabers flutter in the air like lethal neon butterflies.”
“Lethal neon butterflies?” Matt, just come the fuck on.