Thursday, October 15, 2009

Where the Wild Things Were

You know how it is to get attached to a celebrity, book, movie or song, right? You can't help but feel a bit like you own that favorite thing. When I was a little riot grrrl teenager and before that, i used to have to wait until Halloween for the 'weird' colors of nail polish to come out in the drugstores, the blues, blacks, greens and purples, and stock up on bottles of weird nail polish to use year-round, & i'd get teased something awful for painting my nails 'weird' colors, and now, gosh, practically everyone paints their nails blue, black green or purple. Britney Spears even does. and i swear on a stack of bibles that there never used to be rhinestone chokers, silver shoes, or leopard skin print coats in new clothing stores when i was a teenager, can you imagine it? i used to write wish lists for these items, because they were some of the staples of clothing, female counterculture archetype-wise. now, at least in Los Angeles, every millionaire ages 20-40 dresses in my teenaged vision of the female counterculture archetype. i still never get used to it. does anyone else feel this way, that their private coolness ideals aren't so private after all, and that everything cool gets appropriated?
i have had this on my mind because of the release of the movie Where The Wild Things Are, and how excited i am to see it, but also how it's been sort of a bummer to see all the advertising for the film. There are Wild Things tie-ins with Vice Magazine, for instance, which is like ... I still like Vice and probably always will have a soft spot for it, but doesn't MTV or some other awful corporation own it? it feels like a trick, so often, the way corporations dress up their merchandise as something whimsical or obscure or punk, but it's really just more merchandise, more crap probably made in a sweatshop. THere was this really cool, really beautiful storefront display of Wild Things merchandise my husband and I came across the other day, it was a hut made of sticks and scraps of beautiful calico cloth, it was like something both of us, raised to love Maurice Sendak's wonderful Where The Wild Things Are, dreamed of running away to, when we were naughty little children. It just sucked to realize that this neat display was attached to an Urban Outfitters, good ol' (sarcasm) Urban Outfitters, sellers of 'punk' essentials that'll only put you out $60 to $200, in true 'diy,' 'punk,' 'alternative' fashion. barf.
what i'm saying is, i loved Where the Wild Things Are, and i think a lot of people my age were raised with it, but felt like it was a personal love, and, yeeks!, i have such mixed feelings of excitement but also disappointment about seeing the movie, or seeing all the gorgeous yet no doubt carefully-calculated-by-a-soulless-marketing-firm ads and merchandise for the film.

anyway, over & out for now,
and p.s.,
i'm planning to scan and share some of my old zines, "Sweetheart," which i wrote from the time i was 13-18 and which some of you dear readers are probably familiar with, one of these days soon. Does that sound neat, regressive, both or neither?

Princess Robin

1 comment:

  1. I remember walking into an Urban Outfitters once and feeling like my entire childhood wardrobe had been reproduced for mass consumption (the experience was made even weirder by the fact that they were blasting Bikini Kill). Sweetheart zine scans sound neat. Can't wait!