i'll stay here with my secrets

1:57 p.m. x 2008-07-23

currently listening to: "choke" by hybrid

preface (restated): if i could afford it, i would go see "the dark knight" every day that it's in theatres.

body: i haven't written about ken's visit. on the documentarian side of things, he arrived and i made decaf. i showed him around the house and we chitchatted, adjusting to the whole fact of having known each other for two years, despite how it was our first face-to-face conversation. he went to sleep, and i did about four hours later. in the morning, we had a muffin and bagel respectively, and real coffee. we attempted to visit akasha at work (thwarted), he remarked on how the area she and lexi live in so strongly resembles england.

we picked kara up and went on a fruitless hunt for area-specific souveniers (i later got one for him, sending pending). he and i deposited her and ventured out to see lexi at work. she works next door to the comic book shop, so we ducked in there and i found their trove of "WRAPPED IN PLASTIC" issues, which he bought up. i was very proud to lead him to those.

then we ate sushi. then we saw "THE DARK KNIGHT". THEN I COULDN'T STOP EXPLODING. as you've seen. he, lexi, kara and i had taquitos, triumphantly. he and i watched "the cook, the thief, his wife and her lover", as planned from day 1. he slept. i didn't. before i saw him off (at 5 a.m.) i took a picture of him, because i'd been meaning to and because he was wearing my favorite shirt ("this must be where pies go when they die").

and with that, the subjective: i have never been more nervous in my life. never have i sustained such nervousness over such a period of time, with no breaks. i am proud of myself that i didn't throw up, particularly during the movie, about which i was all ready overwhelmed. i'm still exhausted. that took a lot out of me. but i hope he had a nice time.

interjection: reading this review of "mamma mia!" made me forget all my problems.

body (resumed): i realized last night, as i was talking to amber w, that heath ledger's death is a flashbulb memory. now i'll always be able to tell people exactly where i was, what i was doing, and what it was like to hear the news. i am significantly more sad having watched the film three times now. seeing a film three times in a theatre is roughly the equivalent of twice-and-a-half the consecutive views in my room, on this ridiculous little television of mine. the first time i was able to be completely taken by it. the second i was able to totally enjoy all the parts that'd wacked my face in the first time. the third time i got to really mull over it. i am profoundly impressed with - amazed by - ledger's interpretation of the gorgeous screenplay (on his end of things, that is - the stock cops, any and all exchanges between the lovebirds [dawes and dent] were subpar, but not so out-of-place horrid that it isn't forgivable when there's the whole rest of the film to enjoy) and the way he wields his place in the scheme of the plot, his relationship to other characters, and wears his impeccable take on the joker's appearance (gonna get in depth, get ready for it!).

the manipulative quality of the joker makes him so realistically powerful. lexi made a great remark after we watched it, that while he was in police custody, the dye had all but completely washed out of his hair and his makeup was in pretty bad shape, but when he's next seen (taking over the russian's men [and dogs]), he's obviously reapplied his makeup and redyed his hair. he's made to look very much like he does not care about his appearance and is putting little or no thought into himself, but someone who makes himself up so particularly, so specifically to obviously favor a certain style of dress, to wear makeup - he's thinking about it. he insists he has no plan, that he isn't a "schemer trying to control [his] little world", yet he lays out something that quite resembles a master plan to batman during his final monologue (and, likewise, batman nails down joker's modus operandi - he doesn't want to feel so alone). as made frank by his multiple "confessions" to different characters on the origins of his most identifying feature ("wanna know how i got these scars?" - it's so incredibly, endearingly playful how he just starts babbling), he is out, first and foremost, to manipulate. in all likelihood, as supported by his chat with batman in the holding cell ("i don't want to kill you! what would i do without you? go back to ripping off mob dealers?"), he was probably scarred in an incredibly banal, routine way. in fact, he's very straightforeword with batman and batman alone, seems to honestly respect him and gives him the benefit of seeing a side to him he doesn't show anyone else, as much as he's capable of doing. he doesn't manipulate batman because he has nothing to gain from it. he sees himself as batman's peer, and the people around him he's constantly tricking would not be able to empathize with what a person like the joker - and, hence, a person like batman - must be experiencing.

he really just doesn't want to feel "alone", "crazy", and that is communicated in such a subtle, super effective, a-dramatic way, being that it's such a predictable motive for some sap to go off the deep end. the joker is more than that, and he is made more than that by ledger's hilarious, chirpy chicago accent, the genuine pathology of the character. he isn't tormented by his plight, like batman is. he revels in it. he has fun. it's the nearest excuse for him to fuck ALL the shit up and he runs with it.

as far as measuring up to other cinematic supervillains, he takes the fucking piss out of hannibal lecter. the idea of what makes hannibal a threatening figure is the reality of the joker. and, according to his ethos, lecter is among the "schemers", which is what leads to his capture and attributes to his easily romanticized characterization as something that is way too relatable as an anti-hero (though this is unfairly the fault of the shittyshittyshitty "franchise" spawned after the great "silence of the lambs" and "MANHUNTER" [the latter of which remains the only film wherein lecter freaked the shit out of me with his craftiness and lack of empathy]). i love a good anti-hero the same as anybody, but i don't know. it may be because i'm relatively harmless with a well-acknowledged sadistic streak. i love to see characters be total fucking bastards, making a mess all over the city, and being the satan that i don't have the guts/wits/style/wherewithall/you-name-it to be.


if anybody should ask i'm going to a seminar
pieces of the moon
sensitive heart, you're doomed from the start
(& etc)

anybody can be just like me, obviously.
not too many can be like you, fortunately.
KL 02-11