Info

Themes and Memes

Themes and Memes is a different kind of movie review. It is a podcast that delves deep into the dark side of Hollywood films including subjects such as culture creation, state sponsorship, propaganda, predictive programming, occult symbolism and deep subtext. Be sure to listen and subscribe to the feed.
RSS Feed Subscribe in iTunes
Themes and Memes
2017
June
February


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
February
January


2015
December
November
October
September
August
June
May
April
March
February


Categories

All Episodes
Archives
Categories
Now displaying: Category: commentary
Jun 16, 2017

After an extended hiatus, we return to give an update on the podcast; talking about what has been going on behind the scenes, and giving listeners a glimpse of what to expect from future shows. 

We start out by discussing changes and distractions in our personal lives, before mentioning some of the films and TV shows that have caught our attention recently, including the 2006 B-Movie Southland Tales and the 2017 Tech-Thriller The Circle. We also touch on the apparent lack of worthwhile films coming out at the Box Office; looking at whether digital streaming services have now superseded the cinema, and whether on-demand serials are outperforming Hollywood films. 

From there, we continue looking at random oddities from the world of entertainment and media, such as the enigmatic David Lynch, Transcendental Meditation, the recent Oscar Awards blunder, and the various methods that those in Hollywood will employ to create publicity. We touch on the viral success of certain TV shows, and how a changing industry is changing popular notions of entertainment. 

We finish up by returning to the world of Alt-Media and conspiracy culture, once again noting the incredulous turn toward reactionary right-wing populism that has been taken as of late. We note how the founding narratives and principals of Alternative Media have been all but discarded, as it competes for attention at any cost through controversy and vacuous drama. We touch on a few examples and lament the failure of the Alt-Media to be alternative. 

Topics discussed include: Update, Moving, Germany, California, Hiatus, Films, 'Southland Tales', MTV, Bush Administration, Neo-Cons, Hollywood, Media, Politics, Celebrity Culture, Extremism, Reality TV, Trump, Identity Politics, TV Series, Netflix, Amazon, Box Office, Black Mirror, American Gods, 'The Circle', Time Constraints, Marvel, Avengers, David Lynch, Profound Films, Transcendental Meditation, Cults, Mystical Ideas, Darkness, Mystique, Publicity Stunts, Lack of Good Films, 2017 Oscars, 'LA LA Land', 'Moonlight', Vapid Entertainment, Laurel Canyon, Youtube Celebrities, Joe Rogan, Alex Jones, High Ratings, Chobani Lawsuit, George Soros, Mainstream Profile, Alternative Narratives, Terrorism, Security State, James Comey, Russia, Scandal, Insanity of Media, Left-Right Politics, Future of Podcast, Taking the High Road. 

Dec 4, 2016

On this episode, we return to the film Nightcrawler; looking at how social tensions are fostered by false or misleading media narratives, and how alternative media networks are now playing the mainstream outrage game to their own ends. 

In the film, the fictional KWLA-6 news station actively targets white, upper-middle class audiences by selectively running stories about affluent demographics being threatened by urban criminals, so that the station can promote an ongoing narrative of fear and victimhood. We look at how the Alt-Media and the Alt-Right are now exploiting these methods, by dispensing with integrity and championing sensationalist 'panic porn' about threats to the western middle class. 

We discuss the use of statistics in pushing agendas, where numbers and percentages can be worked to suggest any conclusion or point of view. The fictional character of Lou reveals that urban crime rates are actually going down, and that he must work hard to find crimes that support the opposite conclusion; tampering with facts to increase the moral impact of the story. We touch on a number of issues relating to media integrity, including the manipulation of facts into fictional stories, and how fearful narratives engender widespread allegiance to fearful politics.  

We also touch on the recent controversy over ‘Fake News’, where Silicon Valley firms like Google and Facebook have floated the idea of purging alternative websites from their platforms, after it was asserted that propagandists in the Alt-Right helped sway the election for Donald Trump. We note the hypocrisy of both mainstream and alternative sources in crying foul over this fiasco, as both sides will routinely fabricate propaganda and push their own narratives in the media meme-war.   

We finish up by looking at the way in which the social tensions are being further inflamed by the loudest and most controversial voices on both the left and the right, thus setting the tone for everyone else. The rise of reactionary Youtube personalities has been enabled and facilitated by opportunists in both the mainstream and alternative spheres, where controversy and conflict are being elevated above truth and ethics. 

Has publicity become an end unto itself for the Alt-Media? Have the alternative news sources degenerated into the mainstream, where cynical journalists seek out populist drama at any cost, and characters like Lou scour the streets for opportunity?  

Topics discussed include: Nightcrawler, Local News, Narratives, Perceptions, Statistics, Manipulation, 2016 Election, Trump, Crime, Immigration, Racism, Violence, Fear, Propaganda, Alt-Media, Alt-Right, Stories, Downtrodden Minorities, Poverty, Middle Class, Drugs, Victimhood, Strength, Security, Fascism, Alex Jones, Infowars, Paranoia, Integrity, Populism, Key Words, Conspiracy, Sensationalism, Neo-Nazi, Cass Sunstein, Headlines, Addiction, Psychology, Business, Left vs Right, Identity Politics, Terrorism, Richard Spencer, NPI, Red Ice, Hillary Clinton, SJW's, Insanity, Prisons, Racial Segregation, TV, Excitement, Gangs, MS-13, Paul Joseph Watson, Milo Yiannopoulos, Drudge Report, Fake News, Google, Facebook, Lifestyles, Brands, Pop Culture, Youtube, Journalists, Cynicism, Opportunism, Degeneration, Hypocrisy, Julian Assange, Wikileaks, Psychopathic Media, Changing Terminology, Truth Movement, Globalism, Star Wars, Imperial March, Satire, Police Brutality, Martial Law, Law & Order, Newt Gingrich, Peter Thiel, Mitt Romney, Age of Transitions, Cheerleading, Role-play, Opposition, Politics, In-Group/Out-Group Dynamics, Disengaging from Media.

Nov 10, 2016

We continue discussing the 2016 US Presidential Election, reviewing the landslide victory by Donald Trump and what this astonishing development means for both mainstream and alternative culture. 

We start by looking at the question of how this happened. From the FBI to Wikileaks to a bizarre revelation about occult rituals at the 11th hour; Clinton's campaign was dogged by scandal and controversy that vindicated Trump's anti-establishment platform on the final mile. And did the Democratic establishment further provoke the upset by publicly denigrating Trump supporters and brashly claiming victory before the polls had even opened? 

As the dust settles, we question as to whether this populist uprising at the ballot box was the intended result of a targeted leaks campaign by hidden forces. From the Oxford Dictionary: "Trump: A valuable resource that may be used, especially as a surprise, in order to gain an advantage."

We discuss the mainstreaming of anti-establishment narratives in the lead up to the election, along with the future of alternative media in light of this event. Will platforms like Infowars depose the mainstream Neo-Con media, and will they cheerlead for Trump or hold him to his promises? The recent outreach of the Alt-Media into populist causes and the Trump campaign could not have been more opportune, as the outsiders now stand to become insiders.

We also discuss the obvious divisions that this election has created between the left and the right, with angry Marxist youth running riot while being mocked by cocky Trump supporters. Is the establishment's prediction of a Neo-Marxist uprising finally coming to fruition, and has this growing demographic been given a real reason to up the ante? 

Topics discussed include: Election, 2016, Trump, Clinton, Obama, Democrat, Republican, Landslide, Politics, Milestones, CNN, New York Times, Polls, Ballot Box, Satisfaction, Mainstream Media, Symbolic Language, Tarot Card, Rigged, DNC, Wikileaks, Anonymous, FBI, Spirit Cooking, John Podesta, Occult Rituals, Revelation of The Method, Alt-Right, Basket of Deplorables, Infowars, Red Ice, Milo Yiannopoulos, Paul Joseph Watson, Fox News, Racism, Liberals, SJW's, College Campuses, Marxists, Conspiracy, Anti-Establishment, Populist Uprising, Provocation, Attention Seeking, Targeted Leaks Campaign, Throwing the Fight, Strategic Trends, Extremist Narratives, Conflict, Tough Talk, BLM, Outsiders become Insiders, Stagecraft, Theatrics, Branding, Marketing, Products, Pop Culture, Arts, Elections as PSYOPS, Emotion, Reality TV, Celebrity Culture, Ronald Reagan, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Alex Jones, Ted Nugent, Future Elections. 

1