tucker & dale and the instigation of internet mob culture
Re-watching Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (the parody movie where the rednecks in the woods are the hapless protagonists and its the bunch of paranoid college kids causing all the problems.)
I’d forgotten how much the situation was escalated by the one teenager who was clearly looking for an excuse to hurt people. The college kid that, at the beginning of the movie, explicitly declares himself a better person than those around him.
He’s the one who tells his friends “what’s really going on here is worse than you think.” He’s the one who insists they handle it themselves and not through official channels. He’s the one who casts his opponents as “pure evil” and says “we finally have a chance to fight back without rules.” When some of the other teenagers express uncertainty he’s the one that says if they can’t handle what needs to be done, maybe they deserve to die, too.
“We have to burn this place to the ground. Destroy it completely. You have no IDEA what this is all about, do you Allison? These freaks are evil. And they deserve everything that’s coming to them.”
I’d never realized before how closely every single plot point in the movie mirrors the way mob culture instigators will rile up the masses under the guise of “social justice”:
You assume bad faith in your opponents.
You declare your opponents subhuman and acceptable to hurt by any means.
You discourage the use of peaceful or official methods to address the issue.
You keep your followers in line through fear of the “other” and threats of ousting them into that group if they become “contaminated.”
You revel in as much chaos and pain as you can inflict–
“We’ve had a doozy of a day.” “You thought I looked like some kind of freak?” “I never thought I’d say this, but I’m glad I’m not hung like a bear.” “How is he even walking right now?” “He looks like he’s gonna walk it off, he’s gonna be fine!” “Uh-oh-oh, it’s the pancakes! You don’t like pancakes, I will get you somethin’ else!” “We have go to hide all of the sharp objects!” “Everyone just stop for a second and let’s talk this out, okay?” “Nobody wants to hurt anyone.” “You could’ve fooled me!” “How ‘bout I make some tea and we all sit and talk this out.” “When you see a college girl prancin’ around in front of you half naked, you do not call out my name!” “Oh my God, they cut off his bowling fingers!” “There ain’t nothin’ up there but pain and suffering on a scale you can’t even imagine.” “Like I said, I remember weird stuff.” “I thought it might look kinda intimidating. Does it?” “I’ve never stood so close to pure evil before.” “It’s time for you to feel my pain!” “I’m ready, frat bitch!” “It’s true. You’re half hillbilly.” “They’re never gonna believe that.” “She’s just human. Why don’t you go over and talk to her?” “Talk to her? What… What in the world would I say?” “Girls can smell fear.” “You are a good lookin’ man… more or less.” “You got a damned good heart.” “I told you, I’m a zero with the ladies… they hate my face!” “Dreams are not stupid.” “There is no truth! Everything is a lie!” “This vacation sucks.”
Though I am a horror fan, I am curious of your answer: where would you advise a person trying to get into horror to start? I say Halloween but that may too thoroughly represent horror as the slasher cycle and nothing else, though I'm not sure it's possible to find a totally representative work
There’s definitely no totally representative work. Horror’s far too broad and wide a genre for that. And that’s one of the things to focus on when trying to get someone into it. People tend to think of horror as only one thing, and it’s always something different. More often than not, even more than one sub-genre, the people I talk to will always have one movie that’s representative of the whole genre for them.
So I’ll ask people what they think of horror and when they usually say they hate it, it’s some variation of “Oh, it’s all movies like Saw” or “movies like Insidious” or “movies like Friday the 13th.” It’s amazing how many don’t even think of the fact that there even are sub-genres.
If you’ve got a friend you’re trying to get into the genre, it’s always best to start with the things they’re into and then find the horror equivalent of that. If they love sci-fi, turn them toward The Thing, The Fly and Event Horizon. If they love fantasy, try something like Lord of Illusions, Nightbreed or Pan’s Labyrinth.
Horror comedy is, more often than not, a terrific gateway. That’s what usually works best for me. Things like Shaun of the Dead, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, Idle Hands and even Night of the Creeps work great for people who are new to it, because they’re engrossing, fun movies that want you to have a good time.
It can be difficult to start people out on the classics. Unless they’re already a huge film buff, most people tend to be alienated by the likes of Halloween, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Psycho and especially The Exorcist. It’s a needle in a haystack to find someone who likes The Exorcist if they see it for the first time in 2017.
After they’ve gotten a feel for horror and have found a few favorites, that’s a great point to start leading them backward toward some of those foundation movies.
It can be a weird thing to show someone Scream and then start showing them some of the ‘80s slashers that it’s commenting on, but it can actually be great to show someone something that introduces that style and structure in a (more) contemporary way so that they’re used to it when they go back and see the original thing.
I thought I was just common knowledge that Tucker and Dale from “Tucker and Dale vs. Evil” were shagging each other, but apparently it isn’t?
I don’t know why, because they all but say it outright. Early on in the movie a shopkeeper reads out a list of things Tucker has bought for his and Dales stay at the cabin. Food and tools for fixing up the cabin, but also condoms, lube and wetvibes. They make it very clear several times that nobody else live near the cabin, that they intend to only spend time with each other, and that the drive is long and difficult so they won’t be going back to “civilization” any time soon. So it’s safe to say the condoms and lube were for them. Add to that that they’re very comfortable with being intimate with each other.
Obviously they aren’t in a committed relationship, what with all that talk about women, but more of a friends-with-benefits-I’m-drunk-and-horny-and-I-like-you sort of thing.