07 December 2011

Hollywood, geekkultur, and Moviebob

Bob “Moviebob” Chipman at The Escapist has a great little video series about the history of Hollywood. Nothing in it is news to a cinephile, but if you have an idle half-hour to spare and have a casual interest in movies, it's well worth your time.

Note that the page design at The Escapist is pretty bad, so you might miss the link to the next installment; you can find it a few lines below the video player.

Moviebob is a terrific Web raconteur, using his voice plus a few simple slides to tell his story with humor, wit, and no small measure of real insight. I think of him as an example of the intersection of web culture, pop culture, and geek culture at its best, and have watched most of the videos in both his Escape to the Movies review series and his The Big Picture series of ruminations on all manner of geeky pop culture topics. Though I'm tempted to say that his occasional exclamation that comics ... are ... weirrrrd is my favorite part of his schtick, he really shines in digging into some bit of pop culture obscura and coming away with surprising and interesting insight. The signal example of that is his piece The Collar, examining the real reason why Yogi Bear wears a necktie ... which opens the door to an examination of the relationship between cartoon storytelling and the economics of the animation business. Seriously, check that one out, and maybe you'll be hooked on MovieBob too.

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