Friday, February 27, 2009

Starbuck nails it

Anyone who's a child of the 1980s like I am knows who Dirk Benedict is. He was Starbuck, the hot-shot Viper pilot on the original Battlestar Galactica. He was also Face, the wisecracking, lady-killing member of the A-Team.

Well, ol' Starbuck has a few things to say about Hollyweird that made me stand up and take notice. He wrote an article called "Lost in Castration" [warning: R-rated content] that appeared recently on Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood site. In the article, he slams the new 'reboot' of Battlestar Galactica as having a completely different--and lame--moral tone from the original series. Benedict writes:
“Re-imagining”, they call it. “Un-imagining” is more accurate. To take what once was and twist it into what never was intended. So that a television show based on hope, spiritual faith and family is un-imagined and regurgitated as a show of despair, sexual violence and family dysfunction. To better reflect the times of ambiguous morality in which we live, one would assume.
This is something I complain about all the time. The fiction, movies, TV shows, etc. that are released today are all morally repellant. Every character is a scoundrel and one's virtue is determined by how "tolerant" he is of someone else's "differences" [assuming, of course, that those "differences" are this week's talking-points memo of acceptable beliefs or behavioral fetishes]. Perhaps that's why I spend most of my TV-hours these days watching Korean historical dramas like The Great King Sejong [This show is vastly superior to anything on American TV, btw. If you can tolerate the subtitles, check it out].

Today, another article has appeared about Benedict, this one written by Mark Hemingway of National Review Online. And man, is this article ever littered with great quotes, among them:
“Hollywood attracts people who want to be famous,” Benedict says. “It attracts people who are insecure in who they are, and their identification comes from pretending to be other people. But it’s really a profession for 14-year-olds in terms of the intellectual demands on an actor — which is why children are so good at it. It’s difficult for adults to grow up and still be a 14-year-old.”
“Even up in Montana I’ve spent the last 20 years defending the right of my boys to throw a frickin’ snowball, to climb a tree, to jump off a little cliff, to go out in the canoe off my dock without a life jacket,” he says. “All the little boys that refused to give into that were put on Ritalin. The future warriors of America are all on Ritalin in the second grade.”
“The only thing I wanted to do was raise my boys. And I’ve done it. They are a joy to behold, and they are my contribution to the world and I can die happy tomorrow because of what I’ve done,” he says. “They understand this culture that they live in. They’re equipped. I’d rather have that than 25 Oscars.”
Go read the article that puts these quotes in context. It's a beauty. I hope Dirk continues to speak out on these issues--now more than ever, voices like his are desperately needed.

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