A dishonest filmmaker shamed McDonald’s into ending a 90’s delicacy. Can I get a reboot with that?

In 2004, Morgan Spurlock released a film called Super Size Me, in which he, get this, stuffed his face with McDonald’s for thirty days, stopped exercising, and then expressed complete shock that it ruined his health. (It turns out that he was also struggling with alcoholism, too). Many American viewers were persuaded by Super Size Me’s argument that McDonald’s was bad for you, and many more American schoolchildren were forced to sit through it in health class. The film had come out only three years after Eric Scholsser’s brutal expose of the fast food industry, Fast Food Nation, which had…


When copyright holders take a book off of the market, controlled-digital-lending may be a necessary solution

Seuss Enterprises, who owns the copyrights to the works of Theodore “Seuss” Geisel, also known as “Dr. Seuss”, had announced in March of this year that they would no longer be printing six of his books such as And to Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street, If I Ran The Zoo, and McElligot’s Pool. They did so because they claim that the books contained racist images that “portray people in ways which are hurtful and wrong.”

Now, I’m not going to bother debating the offensive content of these books, or the character of Seuss himself, because I figure…


The Final Fantasy series rocked the PSP with fresh titles and classic re-releases, but they’re getting harder to play

While the Playstation Portable may not be remembered as fondly as its competitor, the Nintendo DS, if you were a Final Fantasy fan, the PSP was a must-have. The PSP gave us the Final Fantasy VII prequel Crisis Core, the fighting game Dissidia, and many remakes of older titles. These releases reintroduced and redefined Final Fantasy for a new generation. These games are worth appreciating, especially when you consider how rare some of these games have become.

The PSP, released in Japan in 2004, was itself an important step forward for portable consoles. It boasted graphics far superior to the…


The famed human-rights activist speaks to me about Iran’s protest movement, what keeps her optimistic for the future, and much more

As activists, we must be a voice for those who have none. I can think of few who better fit this ideal than Maryam Nayeb Yazdi, who fights tirelessly every day for the rights of her fellow Iranians. She is a sincere model of solidarity, who reminds us that we have a responsibility to help oppressed peoples wherever they may be.

Yazdi was born in Mashad, Iran, but immigrated to Canada in 1989 to pursue a degree in English at York University. After graduation, she became editor-in-chief of a magazine which covered Tigran, the world’s largest festival that celebrated Iranian…


Those of us who are not Asian have to do all that we can to stop anti-Asian hatred

Times of crisis can sometimes reveal the worst in us. Resentment and prejudice that once bubbled under the surface is laid bare for all to see. The coronavirus pandemic has sadly seen the resurgence of anti-Asian hatred across the United States. Since the virus came out of China, people have allowed their fears of the virus to grow into an irrational phobia of Asian-Americans. America has long had a history of anti-Asian racism, from the Page Act of 1875 to the Chinese Exclusion Acts of 1882 to Japanese-American internment during World War II to the murder of Vincent Chin in…


As we move away from fossil fuels, we can’t forget their workers

When Joe Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, was asked during a press briefing what he would say to fossil fuel workers who would lose their jobs to renewable energy, he replied that the new jobs would offer them better opportunities, saying that “they can be the people to go to work to make the solar panels.” In a vacuum, this sounds rather wonderful, but the reality is a little more complicated. After all, human beings aren’t machines who can be easily plugged out of one job they’ve been doing for 20 years and jammed into a completely…


SPOILER ALERT: Plot details for Mother 3 follow.

What makes the Earthbound series stand out from most JRPGs is that they don’t look at all like most JRPGs. Known as the Mother series is Japan, they eschew the Dungeons & Dragons style pseudo-medieval look of popular JRPGs like Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Fire Emblem, adpoting instead a satirical look at American society. The third in the series is not only the most acclaimed entry, but to many Westerners, the most elusive.

The brainchild of the Mother series is Shigesato Itoi, a fascinating figure in and of himself. Aside from…


Everyday, writers are struggling to make a decent living. The 2018 Authors Guild Survey found that the median pay for full-time writers in the United States fell to $20,300. They also found that the median income for part-time writers fell to $10,500, which represents a 42% drop since 2009. To put things in perspective, the Pew Research Center wrote in 2018 that middle class income ranged from $45,200 to $153,600 for families of three, and from $26,093 to $78,300 for individuals. Last year, the U.S. government found that the poverty threshold for families of three was $21,720, and $12,760 for…


National Film Registry Essay: It’s that time of year again, folks! Every year I make a list of films which I am nominating for the National Film Registry (NFR), which since 1989 has selected up to twenty-five American films a year considered “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” for preservation in the Library of Congress. The public is free to nominate up to 50 films a year provided that 1) the film is at least ten years old and 2) the film is an American production. My current list only has two spots open, and considering that I already nominated “The…


Sonny Bunch is perhaps one of my favorite film critics alive. I don’t always agree with him (in fact, I hardly ever do), but I’m always delighted to read his opinions. He has been a vociferous defender of Zack Snyder’s tenure over the DCEU, he has humorously justified the Empire’s destruction of Alderaan, and he was a voice of nuance amidst the Cuties controversy. I have also enjoyed his observations that environmentalists make great movie villains, that Joker has perfectly tapped into our modern-day anxieties, and his celebration of the raw fury in Dave Chappelle’s 8:46. Bunch is a member…

Sansu the Cat

I write about art, life, and humanity. M.A. Japanese Literature. B.A. Spanish & Japanese. email: sansuthecat@yahoo.com

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