The Return to Planet X

Long, long before The Battle Beyond Planet X met its frothing, pitiable demise, I had in mind the title for its sequel: Return to Planet X. Sounds more like a command than a title, but it was never implemented regardless. The Battle Beyond Planet X is a podcast I did about science-fiction movies, and because it was just me, it became uncomfortably autobiographical and later, aged. … More The Return to Planet X

New K-Drama Alert! The Witch is Alive

The Witch is Alive is the show that Lee Yu-ri cut her hair for, and what makes it unique for me is it’s one of those “first-sight purchases,” or whatever the real term is. The only reason I watched Twenty-Five Twenty-One is because it was the same team as Search: WWW, and the only reason I watched Search: WWW is because of Lee Da-hee. And all the K-dramas I’ve watched and all the ones I’ve loved, it’s never been the premise itself that hooked me. Or even the poster, but I got an eyeful of the one above (POV: being disposed of) and knew everything was gonna be alright. … More New K-Drama Alert! The Witch is Alive

New K-Drama Alert! “Our Blues”

This looks really great, and it’s special for a number of reasons. But first, especially after Twenty-Five Twenty-One, I appreciate an “older” cast. Older than 19, which is what Ji-woong was, by the way. Our Blues reunites Shin Min-a and Lee Byung-hun, two of Korea’s biggest stars who co-starred in A Bittersweet Life as well as a show called Beautiful Days, possibly as siblings. Also starring is Kim Woo-bin, who’s dating Shin Min-a in realidad. It’s like a big happy reunion, with at least one more notable name — Noh Hee-kyung. … More New K-Drama Alert! “Our Blues”

New K-Drama Alert! Twenty Five Twenty One

As you can see, this is headlined by Kim Tae-ri, who I know from The Handmaiden but is also famous for Mr. Sunshine. In fact, the only thing I know about Mr. Sunshine is that image of her with a period rifle. Lookin’ good! But this is the first time it’s the behind-the-scenes personnel that’s claimed my attention, specifically the writer Kwon Do-eun, whose previous (and first) K-drama was Search: WWW, which I won’t shut up about and have more to talk about later. … More New K-Drama Alert! Twenty Five Twenty One

COVID India Relief

The worldwide crisis has become acute in India, where according to CNN, as of May 1st, “just over 2% of India’s 1.3 billion people have been fully immunized with one of two vaccines — significantly lower than the United States, where 29.8% of the population are fully immunized.” Hospitals are at capacity, 300,000 new cases are reported every day. There is an oxygen shortage. … More COVID India Relief

My Statement on the Irene Situation

Christ, a finger wag in word form. Words don’t have hips or hands to put on those hips, and yet, there they are: “My Statement on the Irene Situation.” Your reaction to that is my reaction to the whole thing. And what is the “whole thing,” even? How far does this frustration stretch back? To the beginning of cancel culture? To Tiger Woods on the television apologizing to you for his infidelity? I don’t want to be one of those people who gleefully “cancels” until the canceling becomes inconvenient. Donovan and I have spoken extensively on the subject on our podcast Questions: We Don’t Have Answers — inconclusively, as you might expect. But here’s a collision of cancel culture and idol culture that I need to untangle before I spontaneously combust. … More My Statement on the Irene Situation

Crisis in Xinjiang: Introduction

I’ve been racking by brain recently with how to introduce the humanitarian crisis in Xinjiang to With Eyes East, a movie/K-pop blog. It’s important, generally, and especially important as the current video duo on the YouTube channel is about Chinese history. It’s crucial context for the next installment of “Sisters of Mulan,” which partly discusses the authoritarian Mainland government. My first thought was to attempt outlining a “solution pipeline,” not to present myself as answer-having, but to discover our part in the answer — I was imagining something like “write your U.N.,” and by the time I get there, the whole thing looks ridiculous. It’s an enormously serious situation, and I feel terrible applying my brand of naive slacktivism to it. So before I do come up with a personal solution here, here are two very helpful articles from Just Security, the first communicating the urgency and the second recommending proper responses from world bodies. … More Crisis in Xinjiang: Introduction

Chadwick Boseman

It was not coronavirus, it was not the police. It was cancer, that most apolitical tragedy — awakening no rage, activating no power. That’s been the American experience in 2020, and so his death stands alone as an unanswerable injustice. Chadwick Boseman is the face of a cinema project unprecedented in the U.S. — film … More Chadwick Boseman

Do You Remember?

I don’t know if there’s any harm in being upfront with the mission, though I’ll certainly wonder. It’s nice to tease these things out, you know? I might just be speaking into a microphone, but I think in narrative, and perhaps we all do. There’s no intrigue if I just say everything at the start, but maybe that’s the difference between narrative and good narrative. No filler. Well, you’ll have to be the judge on that one. With Eyes East is a multimedia adventure with the aim of promoting Asian cinema and culture. It’s not a very ambitious aim, so I’ll endeavor to keep it that way. … More Do You Remember?