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David Poland

By David Poland

Banning David Poland

Traveling and finding myself responding to blog flames more than once, I pondered how to proceed. I really enjoy engaging in discussions, especially when people have differing opinions. But far too often, it has become a discussion that digresses into personal attacks. And who needs that?
Then an idea struck me… ban myself from Hot Blog comments.
And so begins the experiment…
For the next month, those of you who comment are on your own. I’m not going to be joining you – though I will read you – in the ongoing conversation. I will write what I want to write. And then, the floor is yours.
Perhaps I will do a weekly entry answering specific questions that have come up… or something like that. I’m not sure. Like I said… it is an experiment.
If things get out of hand, I will be lurking around and will suspend commenters if I feel it is necessary… which I hope it will not be, given that the first time I ever suspended anyone was just a couple of months ago… and if I do feel forced to do any of that, I won’t be blogging about that either.
Anyway… thanks for adding your two cents. See you in comments in a month.

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47 Responses to “Banning David Poland”

  1. Joe Leydon says:

    The inmates are about to take over the asylum.

  2. Blackcloud says:

    I like how the entry is dated April 1, even though it’s still March 31 in most of the world. April Fool’s joke?

  3. Joe Leydon says:

    And I think you’re about to discover, for better or worse, just how flat-out deranged some posters can be.

  4. LYT says:

    I tried keeping myself out of comments on my blog, initially. Couldn’t stick to it.

  5. LYT says:

    Seth Rogen IS “D.P.” in…
    “Banning David Poland”
    from the creators of Superbad and the writer of Movie City News.

  6. LYT says:

    Oops. Make that “the VISIONARY writer of Movie City News.”

  7. leahnz says:

    what a bummer, i hope that’s an april fool’s joke. it’s not the same without the big kahuna (that would be you, dp) stepping in here and there being all king kamehameha-like and laying down the law

  8. Bob Violence says:

    I like how the entry is dated April 1, even though it’s still March 31 in most of the world.

    It isn’t April 1st anywhere in the world. This isn’t very subtle 🙁

  9. mysteryperfecta says:

    If DP did refrain, I suspect the blog would change very little, except in suffering from a major snark deficiency. :p
    In my opinion, this act would increase a practice I’ve always been put off by– and that’s responding to comments with a new blog entry. Its a bully pulpit maneuver that really limits the opportunity for a genuine back-and-forth exchange, and leaves us at the foot of an ivory tower. From my perspective, DP most often engages when he feels attacked, and not as often out of a simple desire to participate. I cannot remember the last time DP participated in any of the ‘for the love of movies’ discussions (when people wax philosophical on a particular movie/genre/etc).

  10. Martin S says:

    Dave – If you’re serious, I understand. The ol’ tactic of personalizing the argument has gotten out of control.
    My only advice is that if you cannot post a new thread everyday, not including BYOB’s, then maybe have Kim or another MCN’er start injectiing new threads on opposite days. You’re going to have to maintain a tighter framework or this place is going to become the Outer Zone. The previous threads, Redbox and Niche, were excellent.
    The summer should be a busy enough season to give you some room and with Wolverine, Trannys2 and Trek, there should be enough spilt blood from the peanut gallery.

  11. Kim Voynar says:

    David’s self-imposed ban does not include me, so I will be around, and will be commenting here on the Hot Blog more than usual as well as writing in my own space on Film Essent and Twittering those all-important 140-character commentaries (kimvoynar over on Twitter, if you care to follow.)
    My crazy-busy travel sched slows down to a crawl post-Dallas, so I’ll be posting more frequently to Film Essent over the next several months, and jumping into the fray here more as well.
    Totally unrelated and apropos of nothing, but who besides me is pumped about the new Star Trek and hoping like hell it doesn’t suck? We’ve been renting ST:TNG for the kids lately and geeking out to Picard and Co., and they are hopped up to see the new film.

  12. Ju-osh says:

    I hope this is a joke. Without you acting as the prevailing personality on the hot blog, the dominant voice will surely be IOIO’s or that other guy’s…the one with the sticky caps-lock key that always begs to be famous.

  13. Joe Straat says:

    Uh oh, I’m starting to see silent guys in black coats who look like David Bowie hanging around, and my cell phone signal is starting to get disrupted….

  14. Crow T Robot says:

    A whole month, hey?
    Dave, I think this is the most emotionally healthy gesture I’ve seen from you in a while. You’re acknowledging that too much blog can be a depressing thing. Good for you.
    Just remember… before you step in the Self-Banning Machine, be sure to check the inside for any houseflies. We wouldn’t want to have to deal with a Poland-Fly monster in May.

  15. jeffmcm says:

    I don’t know, kind of reminds me of Captain Nemo – David Poland becomes a mysterious figure, gliding unseen past us and only occasionally surfacing to destroy a ship or otherwise illustrate his contempt for Finke or whoever.

  16. T. Holly says:

    Oh good Kim, I thought you had jumped ship, so much small stuff happening, the RT current beta tv show, Movieline, Pride’s photography, GlennK busting Buist, AnneT publishing rounds, and not enough awesome 4.2 paragraph film reviews. Yes, I’m psyched for Trek by a certain fellow in underwear posing candidly mark snake cobra – don’t shriek, everyone knows.

  17. Martin S says:

    Kim – good to hear. That should help since it’s not going to be possible to turn your comments until a personal vexing.
    Jeff – that’s a good analogy. Run Silent, Run Poland.

  18. Martin S says:

    Re: Trek. The cast is a tad too pretty for me, especially Pine. He feels more James Dean than Horatio, but that has to do with today’s Post-Leo standards than much else.
    I’ll likely catch it, just to see if Abram’s has finally figured out scope.
    As for ST:TNG. From season three on, it’s excellent.

  19. christian says:

    Man up David. I don’t think you’re attacked THAT harsh or often. You don’t take IO’s rants seriously?

  20. mysteryperfecta says:

    I can’t get pumped up about Star Trek because it doesn’t feel like Trek to me. I suppose its because my attachment to ST was due to the original cast of characters. My attachment to the cast of ST:NG is much less, but I still had a chance to get to know them, and there was a period of transition.
    This is, to a lesser extent, my attitude toward the Star Wars prequels, but it helped that the Star Wars universe is much more iconic for me.

  21. storymark says:

    Count me amongst those who hope this is an April Fool’s joke, because if this place just becomes a proxy blog for the caps-lock twins, I don’t see much reason to keep reading.
    I can just check out a AICN talkback if I need a dose of that shit.

  22. Cadavra says:

    I’m cautiously optimistic about TREK. I’m hardly a fan of Abrams, but he’s smart enough to know that he’ll be tarred and feathered (figuratively, of course…I hope) if he screws it up. The May release and the announcement that a sequel is already in the planning stages shows that Par is pretty high on the film, so for now I’m hoping to be pleasantly satisfied.
    DP, if in fact you’re serious, pray for us.

  23. mysteryperfecta says:

    I disagree with the doomsayers regarding this blog’s health w/out DP. It might take a more concerted effort to avoid encouraging obnoxious behavior, but that’s not hard, is it? It goes 99% unchecked WITH David around. Its just a matter of those easily goaded or those who enjoy a blog skirmish as sport to supress those impulses.
    Ultimately, DP would still be there to dole out his flaccid brand of justice, should the situation require. :p

  24. hcat says:

    interior shot – Poland stands on table above computer
    “This blog is afraid of me. I have seen its true face. The threads are extended gutters and the gutters are full of Caps and when the drains finally scab over, all the vermin will drown. The accumulated filth of all their douchebags and boners will foam up about their waists and all the whores and politicians will look up and shout “Save us!”… and I’ll whisper “no.”

  25. christian says:

    That is funny, hcat…

  26. jasonbruen says:

    Booo, DP.
    Sometimes you expound on your thoughts and ideas in the comments that provide supplement to your posts (especially if something is unclear or beyond us). I think that will be missed.

  27. Hallick says:

    “I can’t get pumped up about Star Trek because it doesn’t feel like Trek to me. I suppose its because my attachment to ST was due to the original cast of characters.”
    That’s part of my own disconnect too. Whenever I see the trailers, I feel like I’m looking at the road company versions of Star Trek characters: better looking but less interesting.

  28. Eric says:

    What pulls me out of every Star Trek trailer so far is the actors’ age. Maybe this is explained somehow in the plot– I’m not versed in Trek lore– but I just have a hard time believing that a large spacecraft would be manned seemingly entirely by people in their twenties.
    It reminds me of Superman Returns, where somebody casting the movie seemed to be planning for a long-term franchise instead of making the movie itself work.

  29. Cadavra says:

    But why, Hallick? We’ve had four consecutive BATMANs with different stars. We’ve had multiple James Bonds and Supermans, Sherlock Holmes and Tarzans, even a new Maxwell Smart. Why should the TREK characters be exempt?

  30. anghus says:

    Actors in their 20’s?
    Karl Urban and Simon Pegg don’t look like they’re in their 20’s.

  31. doug r says:

    Chris Pine is the youngest of the bunch, and he’s now almost 29, born in August 1980. The guy who plays Chekov is 20, but he’s supposed to be baby-faced.
    Bill and Lenny were 35 when they did the original series.

  32. Nick Rogers says:

    Sure, it looks like it’s been Abrams-ized for maximum hipness, and how good or bad that is remains to be seen. But honestly, is it really worth bitching about a slicker reboot after the double cock-punch of “Insurrection” and “Nemesis”?

  33. Lota says:

    “suspend commenters if I feel it is necessary”
    Yes don’t wait too long…discussions have been pretty nice since you did the two long-awaited ass-whoopings.

  34. Hallick says:

    “But why, Hallick? We’ve had four consecutive BATMANs with different stars. We’ve had multiple James Bonds and Supermans, Sherlock Holmes and Tarzans, even a new Maxwell Smart. Why should the TREK characters be exempt?”
    They aren’t exempt. You can reboot Star Trek as well as any of those other properties, but you have an obligation to top the last generation. Batman did that, and Bond did that, and Sherlock Holmes might do that (only in the movie versions, because Jeremy Brett’s Holmes for television was the be-all and end-all of Sherlocks). Here though, I’m not feeling sure yet.

  35. jeffmcm says:

    Eric is right: it’s Jim Henson’s Star Trek babies, justified by some kind of decades long ‘Starfleet Academy’ nonsense.
    Star Trek: Insurrection was harmless; it was just an expensive episode of the TV show. Nemesis, meanwhile, was franchise-ending garbage and Berman got what he deserved.

  36. hcat says:

    The obvious reason the new crew looks so young is that we have aged. Thirty certainly doesn’t look the same once you’ve reached them. Besides Paramount is going to try to get fifteen years out of this crew so they have to start in at least their early thirties.
    I was as shocked as Eric when I saw the picture of Routh in the Superman costume, I thought he was missing his trick or treat bag.

  37. Krazy Eyes says:

    I thought Pine was a horrible choice as well until I caught Smokin’ Aces a while back. The movie sucked but I thought his character was great and he didn’t scream pretty boy at all.

  38. Hallick says:

    “I thought Pine was a horrible choice as well until I caught Smokin’ Aces a while back. The movie sucked but I thought his character was great and he didn’t scream pretty boy at all.”
    All of that weirdness oozing out of him in SA was probably scrubbed off for Star Trek though. I’m haven’t been thinking pretty boy about him in the trailers so much as “look, it’s Captain Frat Boy”.
    Still, who knows, the trailers are mostly about the FX anyway. Maybe the acting is actually there for this one.
    The actor who looks like he should be holding the trick or treat bag here is Zach Quinto. He looks like somebody trying too hard to look like Spock than to just BE Spock. Something about the hair looking sooooooo wiggy.

  39. Kim Voynar says:

    I’m haven’t been thinking pretty boy about him in the trailers so much as “look, it’s Captain Frat Boy”.
    But isn’t that pretty much who Kirk was, at least in his early years? Really, even beyond his early years, he was boning every hot alien sorority girl he could find in between breaking the Prime Directive and blowing shit up.
    Anyhow, this is supposed to be Kirk in Starfleet Academy, the reluctant rebel going into Starfleet. I’ll withhold judgment until I see more than the trailer, but the trailer certainly intrigued me and I didn’t have any issues buying Pine as Kirk.

  40. Nicol D says:

    Kirk was a womanizer to be sure but he was no frat boy. “Frat boy” implies childish, immature and reckless without thought. Shatner was never any of those. Thinking Shatner’s Kirk was all emotion and no intellect is pure revisionism of Trek history.
    There is something…off about the trailers for Trek though and I am a huge OS fan not so much with the others. I agree with the comment about Quinto trying too hard to look like Spock.
    I will see this film to give it a chance but I cannot say I am looking forward to it. It feels like Singer trying to remake the Chris Reeves version of Superman long after the era had passed.
    Perhaps they should have went the Bond route and just cast characters who look nothing like the predecessors and re-write the cannon from scratch.
    All I can think of when I see this is I want more Shatner!

  41. Sam says:

    “We’ve had four consecutive BATMANs with different stars. We’ve had multiple James Bonds and Supermans, Sherlock Holmes and Tarzans, even a new Maxwell Smart. Why should the TREK characters be exempt?”
    I am reminded of this excerpt from Roger Ebert’s review of Steve Martin’s first Pink Panther movie: “Inspector Clouseau has been played by other actors before Martin . . . but what’s the point? The character isn’t bigger than the actor, as Batman and maybe James Bond are. The character is the actor, and I had rather not see Steve Martin, who is himself inimitable, imitating Sellers.”
    Not that any of the original Star Trek crew stands on equal footing with Peter Sellers. But Ebert makes a great point here, that some characters are broader than their actors, while others are inextricable from them. (Of the characters Hallick mentions, all save Maxwell Smart fit into that earlier category. Is it a coincidence that Smart is the only one with origins that predate the screen? I honestly don’t know.)
    Some of the Star Trek characters could be recast, awkward as it would be for me to adjust to. But, for example, Spock played by someone other than Nimoy surely is not Spock at all.

  42. Sam says:

    I meant “origins that DON’T predate the screen,” of course. Gah.

  43. christian says:

    So David WAS serious…

  44. Cadavra says:

    You make a good point, Sam, but it’s kind of a judgment call as to whether character outweighs actor. (No matter how many 007s we will get, it’s unlikely any will top Connery, even decades on–but they keep at it, and Craig is darn good. Hell, how many Hamlets have we had over the years?) When all’s said and done, actors do age, and characters–if they’re popular enough to “outlive” them–will need to be recast.

  45. Sam says:

    I probably agree that it’s a judgment call, but maybe not with as much wiggle room as you do. In the case of Bond, even if you think Sean Connery is unbeatable as Bond, the point is that the character is broad enough to exist apart from him. Roger Moore, like him or not, made the Bond character work on his own terms. Lazenby, although I thought he did a pretty good job, did not: half the time he was doing a Connery impersonation. But as Moore, Dalton, Brosnan, and now Craig all demonstrate, James Bond can and does exist apart from Sean Connery.
    Inspector Clouseau, however, can’t exist without Sellers. When Arkin, Moore, or Martin is playing Clouseau, they’re really playing Sellers-as-Clouseau to one degree or another. Had Sellers not created the character, he simply wouldn’t exist. He’d be somebody else with the same name. It’s *theroetically* possible that someone might come along and bring Clouseau to life in a way that does not depend upon or invoke Sellers (in the early 1970s, it wasn’t yet clear that Bond was bigger than Connery, after all), but it’s difficult to imagine: the things that make Clouseau Clouseau are so intertwined with Sellers’ unique, inimitable style.
    For another example, there’s the “Woody Allen character” in Woody Allen movies. John Cusack, Kenneth Branagh, and others have all tried their hands at it, some doing great jobs, but that character is still inextricable from Woody Allen and is always best performed by Woody Allen. Even if Allen is now too old to play a lot of the roles he would normally assign to himself, it doesn’t stop one from wishing otherwise.
    It’s possible I’m wrong about Kirk and Spock and McCoy. Maybe they aren’t inextricably Shatner and Nimoy and Kelley. But right now, I just don’t see it. Those characters are not terribly multi-dimensional, admittedly, but what definition there is to them comes from the original actors, as opposed to archetypes, ideas, or costumes.
    In short, is it possible for someone to play Kirk without playing Shatner? I’m guessing no.

  46. Cadavra says:

    Well, I guess you’re glass-half-empty and I’m glass-half-full–at least for now. You’re right, it doesn’t always work, and this could well be just another instance of that, but I’m trying to maintain my generally optimistic nature. We’ll find out for sure in about five weeks.
    BTW, it could be argued that Maxwell Smart, Lt. Frank Drebin and Johnny English are all Clouseau minus the Sellers factor.

  47. jeffmcm says:

    Yeah, and all of those are pretty uniformly tied in to Don Adams, Leslie Nielsen, and Rowan Atkinson as well (sorry Carell).
    One thing that differentiates Tarzan, Batman, Sherlock Holmes, and Bond from the Star Trek characters is all of the former were based on literary characters.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon