Nov 21, 2022
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, so the saying goes but it's absolutely true. There is a layered subjectivity to it based on personal preference, the cultural standards of your community, the ethnic traits of you and your peers, prevailing global fashions in appearance, the dominant archetypes in the media and so on. All these things combine to form our personal subjective ideas of beauty. You can see this yourself if you look at paintings, statues, masks, frescoes and other artifacts that have been produced by all the diverse cultures on earth over thousands of years: there IS no standard, eternal, objective of beauty.
Topics and Show Notes
Years ago a plastic surgeon thought he'd cracked the secret. He wrote a book about the idea of a mathematical, objective beauty model based on symmetry. Of course any artist could have told him it was absolute nonsense for any number of reasons, but popular books based of pseudo-science gain a lot of traction among the majority of people that don't tend to be able to think too hard about these questions and crave easy solutions.
There are two competing, rudimentary forces at the base of the idea of beauty:
One part is based on conformity: becoming the most generic, simplistic, ordinary, average version of something. Symmetry is a big part of that. This is what that sort of cosmetic surgeon specialises in. We can surmise this comes from the drive to find things that look like us (i.e. our tribe), and is the best representation of “us”.
The second part is based on novelty: What makes this person stand out, what makes them different and unusual.
And then cultural standards, popculture, fashion and many other factors add layers of complexity to these.
*A note on symmetry:
Part of the mistaken notion that inflated its role in “beauty” was the idea that it's an indicator of health or “good genes”, which is false. The reason for symmetry in bodies is just to make the coding simpler. Recent studies have confirmed this: just like when an artist wants to save time by using a mirror or copy, pasting and flipping to make a face or body, nature does it for the same reason.
We talk about it in much greater detail in the Quackcast! Who do you find beautiful?
This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to Phineus Teen Wizard - Thrumming 80s groove. Synthesised neon soft pink glow in the midnight blue fuzz. We’re going back in time… roll up the sleeves on your red leather jacket, slip on your fingerless gloves, lace up your hightops, get on your BMX bike and peddle back through the decades to 1983!
Topics and shownotes
The Faceless Comics Set 1 - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2022/nov/15/featured-comic-the-faceless-comics-set-1/
Phineus Teen Wizard - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/Phineus_Teen_Wizard/ - by Phinmagic, rated E.
Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean
Kawaiidaigakusei - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/kawaiidaigakusei
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/banes
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
Become a subscriber on the $5 level and up to see our weekly Patreon video and get our advertising perks!
Even at $1 you get your name with a link on the front page and a mention in the weekend newsposts!
Join us on Discord - https://discordapp.com/invite/7NpJ8GS
Nov 14, 2022
So how do you like comedy that makes you cringe? You know that really awkward humour where you feel embarrassed for those involved and almost in physical pain for them? You feel really bad for them… It could be cruel pranks, or jokes based on lies or misunderstandings that are just carried way too far. Personally I find them hard to take. It CAN be great like in the original version of The Office, but even that was REALLY hard to watch at times. This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to Stick Figure Apocalypse - Relaxing, cool funk groove that cruises along dreamily, hitting turbulent waters hallway through, with a wildly discordant patch of sonic confusion, startling us out of our revere, before slipping back into the same quiet groove again and fading to silence.
Nov 7, 2022
There are all kinds of relationships and they're great fodder for stories. The most typical is when two characters are getting INTO a relationship- all that will they/wont they stuff. But characters could also be ending a relationship, or maybe ending one in order to get into another, they could even be in a stable, long term relationship, although those aren't quite as common in media. My favourites are the ones where sex and attraction isn't a factor: relationships between family members, co-workers, friends etc. For some reason when it's platonic I find that a lot more compelling than sexual tension, especially when there would normally be the potential for sex- i.e. two unrelated compatible people with the same sexual and gender preference.
Oct 31, 2022
Happy Halloween! Our topic is horror Sci-Fi. Sc-Fi brings with it a whole lot more interesting things you can do with horror and scary stories and there are so many great examples, from the worlds of HP Lovecraft, Alien franchise, Dead Space, Doom, Warhammer 40K, Event Horizon, the Cell, the SCP universe and more. We were inspired by Bane's newspost about horror and technology and all the cool responses he had. What's your fave horror SciFi?
Oct 24, 2022
How do you write scary scenes for comics? Banes loves horror so he come up with this subject, plus we're coming up to Halloween! Listen to find out what we come up with. How do YOU write scary scenes though, what are your tips and tricks?
Oct 17, 2022
“Freedom” is the catch cry in so much historical fiction but it's usually an anachronistic piece of nationalist fantasy. You fought for your lord, for pay, your honour, your small region, etc, not for “Scotland” (i.e. Bravehert). Even today it's generally propaganda: e.g. The Invasion of Iraq being called “Operation Iraqi Freedom” and Russia's invasion of Ukraine being all about “freeing” the Russian speaking areas from “oppression”. We alter historical stories to fit with contemporary ideas about ourselves and to give us some form of foundation for our prejudices, motivations and identity. Good examples are the Arthurian legends, Gladiator, Braveheart, The Patriot, Robin Hood, The stories about Christopher Columbus, The 300, and The Woman King.
Oct 10, 2022
When creating fiction we always have to stylise experience in many and various ways in order to communicate with the viewer in a way that's meaningful to them because it's usually impossible to simply show them the exact reality of something and expect that same meaning to carry through.
Oct 3, 2022
We are talking about the trope of the Cad, AKA the Player. F***boys are their little scrappydoo kid-brothers, we call them “fun” boys for obvious reasons… It's a fun trope which is often exaggerated for comedic effect but actually comes from a very real thing! There are a lot of famous pop-culture versions though like Barney Stinson, Pepe Le Pew, James Bond, and The Continental.