The Bearded Awesome

TV/Media Commentary and Societal Insights. With a Beard.

So, what’s the deal with gay people, anyway?

After showing this conversation to a few of my friends, I’ve been told that my response might actually be beneficial to publish and share online, for people who a) Want to see how I handled someone hell-bent on believing homosexuality (or any non-straight orientation, I guess) is a choice; or b) Are legitimately interested in what the deal with gay people is, or something.

I normally save this blog for articles and keep personal insights to my Tumblr, but I thought people who enjoyed my very early piece, 4 Reasons I Would Never Choose to be a Gay Guy, might enjoy my response, which is basically a more mature, in-depth evolution of that comedy article.

I also figured, if I devoted the energy to craft such an in-depth response to someone really ignorant and undeserving, it might be worthwhile to share it with people who ARE worth putting that much time and effort into. So this one’s for all of you. Hopefully you’ll be enlightened or entertained.

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3 Ways the “YOLO” Mentality Sucks

We all need ways to help us get through the day, especially when life keeps giving us lemons but our juicer is broken so you can’t even make lemonade. There are billions of crazy fortune cookie sayings that, instead of telling us our fortune, tell us “the sun only rises for those who wish it to” or “consume goat’s blood over the Hellmouth on the hour of the beast.”

Should I be worried?

But cheesy inspirational phrases do have a point—living your life completely safe will definitely make you hate it. Which is why concepts like “Live like you were dying” or “YOLO” (an acronym for “You Only Live Once” that’s actually pronounced phonetically because God hates us) and variations of the like have always had popularity one way or another. “YOLO” in particular, after being popularized by that one guy from Degrassi who’s also a rapper apparently, has exploded with teens and young adults lately. Drake has actually described it as a legitimate “movement” (remember that nothing else important is happening in the world right now) and it’s a popular Twitter hashtag, reason for pranks, and even Zac Efron apparently tattooed the motto on himself, which is again the most important thing happening in the entire world.

NO ZAC! NOT YOUR PRECIOUS BOD!!!

The media can have its field day with Efron and teen pranks, but ultimately you can’t stop people from being fucking stupid. That stuff’s going to happen with or without a dumb motto. The problem, though, is that even for people who don’t consciously say the phrases like jackasses, the “YOLO” concept of “live your life to the fullest” is used copiously by young adults in their 20s—people who are out of school with no idea what to really do next. It’s an age where, yeah, we can be doing random shit. It’s way more likely that the job we’re working or place we’re living or even significant other we’re with won’t be the same in the next 5 or 10 years. And that’s okay, because plenty of people use their 20s as a time for exploration (especially in the current market) so of course you’ll be doing different things. But some people use “YOLO” or less BS phrases like “Carpe Diem” as their foundation, and instead of it being motivation to try new things, it just screws them over, mentally, emotionally and even physically.

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New Retrospective Review Blog Up!

If you’re interested, check out We Live Again!, a episode-by-episode retro-review for the 90s actions cartoon Gargoyles. Much of it is for fun and for me to play around with different reviewing styles that wouldn’t quite jibe with KSiteTV, but it’s also a reason to go back through what’s still a very solid show and get further some insight into it. If you’re a longtime fan or a newbie, you should get some enjoyment out of it, so take a look!

Currently I’m putting up two reviews a week on Monday/Tuesday and Friday/Saturday, depending on my other obligations. It may change after we’re out of the five-part pilot, but as of now there’s plenty of Gargoyles goodness coming your way!

Check it out!

4 Reasons Why Hardcore Fandoms Have Balls of Steel

The whole concept of being a “fan” of something has exploded in the past few years, no doubt thanks to things like the internet, and the internet, as well as the internet.  Being totally in love with and knowing everything about the thing you like no longer makes you a nerd, it’s just kind of accepted.  Movie fans, sports fans, music fans, video game fans—everyone’s on the same level now in terms of societal acceptance of utter devotion, now that it’s so much easier to form a fan community with people all across the globe.

That being said, there’s still a huge chunk of fans that are on a wholly different playing field.  People that become well-known staples within the fanbase—running websites, moderating message boards, crafting loads of fanfiction, fanart and GIFs, organizing campaigns, travelling to conventions, following concerts.  I myself have pretty much gotten out of the habit of being crazy intense with fansites after some bad experiences.  Now, I don’t want it to sound like “I don’t participate in fandom” because I’m a pretentious dick or something.  I mean, I kind of am a pretentious dick, but not about this stuff.  In fact, me not being able to get too fully immersed in some of the most intense fandoms just means I don’t have the balls to be in them, and here’s why.

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5 Reasons Why You Should Read My Articles

Alright, this isn’t a whole piece on reasons why yours truly is great (that should be self-explanatory.)  But it is a list of five things I’ve written for KSiteTV in the past couple of months, in a lame attempt to save face and prove that the hiatus from this blog wasn’t pure neglect.  Rest assured, The Bearded Awesome will be up and running for the summer season, beginning with a new Life/Society article this week and a new fun little TV-centered series next week.  Until then, here’s a sample of my other pieces from the past two months (the rest of which can be found here.)

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5 Irritating After-Effects of Losing Religion

Growing up means things change.  Your experiences shape your perceptions, and eventually you stop seeing things the same way and realize you might not believe in what you used to believe.  Just like you thought Dragonball Z made sense or you could grow up to be a tiger-training astronaut, some people grow up and question whether or not they truly believe in God, and sometimes come to the conclusion that the religious organization they’re part of is wrong.  While there are plenty of complex, tragic tales out there regarding loss of religion, for some of us, it was much simpler: we realized we didn’t believe it, wanted to get out, and want to move on with our lives.  But sometimes, that’s the hardest way to go.

(Please note that, while I’m addressing religion of all types in the general sense, my examples and references will be predominantly related to Christianity, simply because that’s where my personal experiences lie.  ALSO I’M  ‘MURIKAN, AND ‘MURKIA IS CHRISTIAN NATION!)

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It’s All About Perspective: Another Lame Internet Writer Overanalyzes The Walking Dead

The whole “not looking in the same direction for some reason” thing basically symbolizes the viewers at this point.

Yeah yeah, I know.  I apologize in advance, since The Walking Dead has already been written about ad naseum by everyone ever, but instead of discussing what you’ve already heard from more competent writers, I’m going to discuss a bit of my own personal experiences and pose a theory of why many might feel the way they do.

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When Francie Stopped Liking Coffee Ice Cream: 4 Elements That Make a Good Plot Twist

Note: This article contains some massive spoilers from season 2 of Alias.  Read at your own risk if you haven’t seen the show.

Serious drama is a really hard thing to pull off.  That sounds kind of dumb, because drama’s really the baseline for every coherent story you’ll ever tell–even comedies usually have some pseudo-dramatic throughline to make us care about what we’re laughing at.  But doing pure, unadulturated, opening-your-heart-and-ripping-it-out dramatic shockers is really really hard.  Plot twists go wrong when it feels like they’re twists for the sake of twists, carry no emotional weight, or have been so carefully mapped out that you can predict them, prepare for them, and thus feel no emotional gut-punch that should have been the whole point.  Millions have attempted a “Luke, I am your father,” but more fail than succeed.  Talking about the history of big plot twists would be a huge endeavor, and it’s not something I have any intention of doing, but I’d like to look at a very massive dramatic twist in one particular show, Alias.  

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5 Ways to Tell You’re Using Social Media Wrong

‘Tis the season for Lent, which means for a little while there might be a surplus of chocolate, soda, and masturbation.  But here in the 21st century, more and more people might be giving up social networking–which, if that’s what you’re giving up in the name of God or The Doctor or whoever, that probably means it qualifies as a big deal.  No doubt you’ve heard the constant debates over how social media is changing our culture for better or worse, though usually people say it’s for the worse.  I’ll take a wild guess and say you, the reader, have a Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, or some other knock-off like that “FriendZone” site the college kids are always talking about.


Oh.

I can’t really argue for the negative effects it has on society–just a quick glance at Twitter will prove that people are really, really stupid.  But there are ways to have these pages to share and connect with people, and even use them quite a lot, without plunging your social life down the toilet and giving in to Skynet.  I’m certainly not saying I’m the absolute perfect social media user myself.  But I don’t feel an overwhelming sense of disillusionment or stress because of it.  I’d like to think I’ve learned enough from my good and bad internet experiences–as well as creepily observing everyone else–to say that I at the very least don’t use it badly (anymore.)

 It was 2006, okay?!

What I’m writing about is based on what a comedian I follow on Tumblr (oh hay social networking) said: “If you think Facebook is annoying, you have annoying friends. If you think Facebook is shallow, you have shallow friends. Whatever you think about Facebook, that is a direct reflection of your friends. OR…you are using Facebook wrong.”  I’d argue this could work as the basis for the internet as a whole–that how you view it is a direct correlation to the environment you’re in and how you use it.  If you think the social networking realm is a shallow, narcissistic, drama-producing life-ruiner machine, read on and see why it probably means you’re doing it wrong.

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15 Underrated Smallville Episodes You Should See

Season 8-10 Cast

Like any show with as much longevity as Smallville, viewers came and went–ratings dipping from 8 million to 2 million over the ten years proved that.  Ask anyone about the best episodes of the series, and you usually get things like “Pilot”, “Rosetta” , “Memoria” and “Crusade” from the early years.  There are lots and lots of people who left the series about mid-way through, and most casual fans you’ll talk to probably stopped watching it during season four (those witches really turned a lot of people off.)

It’s to be expected; people simply lose interest in keeping up week-to-week at a certain point.  If they come back, it’s usually for the well-marketed “event” episodes–the 100th and 200th episodes, big superhero team-ups like “Legion,” “Justice” and ”Absolute Justice,” and the series finale.  And while those are fine and good, just because they’re the ones the that get talked about the most doesn’t mean they’re the best the show has to offer.  In fact, there are tons and tons of little gems from the show’s later years that casual or former viewers probably missed out on.  There are plenty more (or less) depending on who you ask, but here are 15 underrated episodes I’d recommend to veteran and new viewers alike.

Read the full post at KSiteTV!