The Cutprice Guignol

The Ninth Year: The Haunting of Swill House



I have hear many people wishing to return to ‘normal’. It makes me sad because I want to say this – please understand that your ‘normal’ never existed. It is a construction which has been used to seperate and bestow upon a privileged few a life of (relative) luxury, comfort and on-demand services, whilst resigning the majority to a standard of ‘normal’ far inferior to what you would consider adequate for yourself.

Think about this – how many times recently have you heard someone criticise Chinese eating habits as being ‘not normal’? Yet no one bats an eye (accidental pun but I stand tall) at the miserable life (42 days on average) of a battery farm chick because we consider that ‘normal’. Have you ever heard someone describe Africa (the whole continent) as being ‘incapable’ of achieving normality? Yet most Westerners don’t think it abnormal to homogenise millions of independent…

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The X-Files and the Monsters of That Week: 3

When it comes to the worst Monster of the Week episode of The X-Files’ second season, the choice is a remarkably easy one. Season two was a giant leap forward for the show: the mythology was established enough to start growing into some of the most exciting event television of the nineties, and the Monsters of the Week became more creative and unique. A typical weak episode of season two is one where not everything hangs together: such as Fearful Symmetry, Aubrey, and Our Town. They aren’t disasters – due to the to the chemistry of Mulder and Scully, the confidence of the writers, and in many cases, the cinematic presentation of each episode. I dare you to find a more brilliantly directed show in the nineties than The X-Files, especially in this confident second season.

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