MIKE GOLD: The Darknight Contrarian
I used to have a reputation for sometimes being kind of negative. That comes with the career in radio and “journalism,” and I’ve worked at overcoming it. But, like most childhood pleasures, not using a skill doesn’t mean you no longer know how to use it.
For example. I have come to the conclusion that the Paris Hilton affair has become a legitimate news story (it didn’t start out that way), and that she got screwed.
After listening to a bunch of experts and pundits and reporters, it seems pretty clear to me that Hilton is doing time for being Paris Hilton – people in similar situations, and, sadly, there’s no shortage of them – would be given community service or pay a fine or be under house confinement. Being locked up at the taxpayers’ expense for such a violation is nearly unheard of. And, yes, in California as well as most of the rest of these United States the sheriff is charged to run his prisons as he sees fit.
Hilton was busted for violating her plea agreement. As such, she was real stupid. Hilton is despised for being an “artificial” celebrity, as if there’s any other kind, and for being a whinny spoiled brat. I understand; she is a whinny spoiled brat. But that’s not against the law; if it were, I’d have a much, much easier time going shopping here in Fairfield County Connecticut.
So Hilton is serving time not for breaking the law but for being a high-profile stupid whiny brat. She has my sympathy; fair is fair and, as she said while she was being hauled off to the slammer kicking and screaming for her mommy, this is not fair.
For example. Everybody seems bent out of shape about the conclusion to The Sopranos, including ComicMix’s own John Ostrander. I think the ending was fine. Not great, not awesome, but exactly on the money.
This is a show that lost its raison d’être the moment actress Nancy Marchand died, back in 2000. Her character, momma Livia Soprano, was the story’s anchor. Without her, the plot never was as compelling, nor was it as understandable. It was reduced to its core element: Ozzie and Harriet Nelson, the family of Made Men.
And that’s what the ending was all about. It didn’t matter if Tony got wacked in the restaurant in front of his family. If it didn’t happen then, if could just as easily happen the next day or the day after. Being a mob boss is not a “safe” job – Al Capone ran his mob for about seven years, and was only a functioning operative in that mob for a total of about a dozen years.
Here’s the proof: midway through that final episode, Anthony Junior became Christopher Moltisanti, which, as we all know, is what his father should have wanted all along. He got the mob-connected job in the film business, he got the mob-connected car, he’s always had the mob-connected father but now daddy finally delivered for him. Life goes on with the Nelson Family of New Jersey, and what goes around stays around. Nothing changes.
And, sadly, that’s what The Sopranos had been about.
For example. George W. Bush.
I’ve got nothing.
And, come to think of it, neither does George.
Mike Gold is editor-in-chief of ComicMix.