Sunday, February 6, 2011

Going full circle in pop culture hell

As someone who knows way too much about pop culture, this New York Times story about the new Spider-Man musical caught my eye, particularly this passage:

Media celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Glenn Beck and the hosts of “Morning Joe” have all raved about the musical, especially Mr. Beck, who said in an interview on Friday that he had seen it four times.

Mr. Beck has framed its appeal on his radio broadcast as a face-off between regular Americans and cultural snobs (i.e., liberals). In the interview, however, he was more fanboy than fire breather, rattling off plot points and design elements with the practiced eye of a Sardi’s regular.

“The story line is right on the money for today, which is to be your better self, that you can spiral into darkness or — ” here he quoted one of the show’s anthemic songs — “you can rise above,” said Mr. Beck, who estimated that he sees a dozen shows a year. “In fact, I just wrote an e-mail to Julie” — Ms. Taymor — “about how much I loved the new ending.

Though it's probably just a coincidence, Mr. Beck had quite a bit in common with Spider-Man's co-creator, Steve Ditko, at least when it comes to politics. Ditko was a devoted objectivist and was greatly influenced by Ayn Rand, particularly The Fountainhead and its persecuted hero. You could catch some glimpse of this in the Marvel comic, but it wasn't until Ditko left the company in the late Sixties that he was able to fully express his philosophy in a series of comics that really have to be seen to be believed.

So for fans of Steve Ditko, students of objectivism and those of you with a morbid sense of curiosity, enjoy.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for this.

    Remember, kids! Opponents always have easily contradicted, simplistic worldviews so that they will be easy to win arguments against. Otherwise your protagonists, with their even more simplistic worldviews, would have no chance.