Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Some quick thoughts:
- The structural problem with any heroic narrative is that the hero must be imbued with some sort of weakness, so that the hero is relatable, and so that the story goes somewhere. Stories in the Hebrew Bible often give the protagonist the sin of doubt, for example. In Greek and Roman mythology the hero's weakness is frequently pride. Superman is often said to be boring because he is too powerful, and it's true that Kryptonite isn't a very interesting weakness, but the Last Son of Krypton is also burdened with the necessity of maintaining a secret. What Stan Lee and his collaborators did was to make Marvel's heroes filled with self-doubt. In that sense Spiderman, the Hulk, Daredevil and the rest are existential heroes, very much a product of post-WWII anxiety.
- To Sullivan Fortner at Bruce Eaton's Hunt Real Estate Art of Jazz at the Albright-Knox Saturday. With bassest Ameen Saleem this was two thirds of the late Roy Hargrove's rhythm section, filled out for this performance by Winard Harper. Wow. In a year filled with great music I can honestly say that nothing topped this.
- "The Ballad of Buster Scruggs" is so good I feel like watching it again tonight.