8A - Monday, September 12, 2011 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom
Sketching MC Chris
cable television, how
you spoil us. I remem-
ber just a few years ago
summer TV only offered reality
fluff, and the water cooler discus-
got upended ,
that week on
as if I needed
excuse to be a SHEKHAR
recluse during PANDEY
exacerbate my Vitamin D defi-
ciency, we have the benevolent
trio of FX, AMC and HBO serv-
ing up new seasons of some of
the best programming in all of
television, including "Game of
Thrones," "Breaking Bad" and
"Louie." Summer shows are
now relevant, and our months
on break this year produced a
remarkable occurrence: His-
tory bizarrely repeated itself and
shined a light on our society's
AMC's "The Killing" debuted
in April, bursting out of the gates
with strong ratings and glowing
reviews. The show, set in Seattle,
follows an investigation into the
death of a teenage girl - a prem-
ise brazenly cribbed from the
ential series "Twin Peaks"(1990-
1991, R.I.P.). Beyond that, their
narratives took completely dif-
ferent turns. Created by master
surrealist David Lynch ("Blue
Velvet"), "Twin Peaks" went
nutso, involving demonic pos-
sessions, dancing dwarves and a
cross-dressing David Duchovny,
while "The Killing" remains
firmly grounded in reality.
Yet, the two shows managed
to suffer nearly identical fates.
"Twin Peaks" wrapped up its
first batch of episodes without
revealing the killer, and audience
frustration led to network pres-
sure, which led to the premature
resolution of the answer in the
middle of the show's second sea-
son, which led to hemorrhaging
'ers and its cancellation or less these days. If our minds
thereafter. are accustomed to the instant
ilarly, the first season of gratification of rapid resolutions,
illing" ended in June with- how can we be expected to tol-
ealing the killer, with yet erate "The Killing," which has
r red herring cliffhanger. stretched over (approximately)
ecades after "Twin Peaks," 572 minutes without an answer?
d viewers have an outlet That's a 1,200-percent increase in
ir rage (haaaaave you met time devotion (so far). 1,200. As
r?) and their response 'Ye would say, that shit cray.
overwhelmingly negative But it's those extra minutes
MC issued a public state- that make "The Killing" -
ddressing the outcry. The though it has its flaws - better
vas renewed for a second than most police shows on the air.
, but I'm guessing more At the end of the day, the identity
few viewers will jump ship of the killer means diddly squat,
te case is solved (if they just like how "Lost" was never
t already) and "The Kill- really about the Island. "The
ill soon be buried next to Killing" is about the perpetually
Peaks" in the television frumpy detective Sarah Linden
ard. and her struggle to be a good
truth is, two parties are at mother and fianede, her partner
ere. The producers of "The the ex-drug addict yearning for a
" blatantly ignored history second chance, the mayoral can-
ould have realized that didate tryingto win a campaign
ces are too impatient to without sacrificing his soul and
a drawn-out murder mys- the parents of the murdered girl
ther they never studied who have to, somehow, move on
e of "Twin Peaks" or they with their lives.
t "The Killing," based on a In fact, arguably the best
r Danish television series, episode of "The Killing" was
be different enough to "Missing," where Linden and her
The bigger question is: Why partner spend the entire hour
liences so impatient in the looking for Linden's son and
ace? Can't they just wait? essentially no progress is made
in the central murder case - it
was just two protagonists talking,
getting to know each other in a
This year's m
This ear s moment of crisis.
nrner TV is It's said that David Lynch
wanted to wait a long time to
Lking a kjlijn' solve the murder of Laura Palmer
in "Twin Peaks," had the show
continued. The investigation was
just a MacGuffin to bring Special
answer must lie in the Agent Dale Cooper to a kooky
of the medium. Murder town called Twin Peaks, where
y movies get solved right he could interact with its citizens
n a snappy two hours or (like the Log Lady), uncover its
ith murder mystery nov- secrets and eat slices of cherry
to Blind Pig
By CHLOE STACHOWIAK
Daily Arts Writer
MC Chris has been around the
block. He's sampled a fair share
of the entertainment industry
in the past ten years, with eight
album releases and work on car-
toons like "Aqua Teen Hunger
Force" and "Sealab 2021" under
his belt. Even with this long list
of feats, the musician's act is far
from stale. He hit the Blind Pig
last night with new music, new
animation ideas and the same
sense of humor that's made him
stand out since his childhood.
The performance showcased
Race Wars, the artist's newest
album and installment in the
related skits he weaves through-
out his music.
"There's a pretty huge story
arc that goes across all of my
albums, and Race Wars is just the
latest kind of episode," he said in
an interview with The Michigan
Daily. "There's not a lot I can say
without ruining it, but it's heavily
based on George Miller and his
movie 'Mad Max."'
While he's reluctant to drop
his story's details, the inspira-
tion behind the new album is less
"Race Wars is kind of an exten-
sion of my childhood, which was
filled with 'Star Wars' and G.I.
Joe," he said. "Basically, I don't
want to grow up."
For a lifelong entertainer like
MC Chris, separating childhood
from adulthood is impossible.
"As a kid, I was very much
the same exact person that I am
now," he said. "I would leave my
table if (my family) went out to
eat, and I'd go to someone else's
table and I'd tell them that I'd
tell them a joke if they gave me a
french fry. I think that at an early
age I learned that if I entertained
people, they'd give me something
Race Wars's content may be
MC Chris doesn't like to separate childhood from adulthooi
based on the artist's early days in
Illinois, but that didn't stop him
from maturing and developing
the album's actual music.
"Race Wars is very organic -
lots of instruments," he said. "We
brought in alot of great folks, like
Superhuman Happiness, and they
made some awesome-sounding
songs for me."
He added, "It sounds like an
MC Chris record, but it starts out
with a very different and foreign
New music isn't the only trick
up the artist's sleeve. After receiv-
ing fan donations of over $60,000,
he's now working on his own MC
Chris cartoon. With so much time
spent in the animation studio,
Chris is grateful for the chance
to get out and interact with fans
during his tours. Unlike other
musicians, though, touring for
him isn't all fun and games.
"We go to Waffle House, we
stay at the cheapest hotel we can
find, we get kicked out the next
morning by angry maid, and we
drive six hours to the next venue
and do it all over again," he said.
"There's no TV coming out of the
hotel window with me. There's
not a lot of shenanigans or drink-
ing If we getreally crazy, we'll eat
rice or something. We'll eat some
carbs. We'll have a loaf of bread,
instead of a bottle of vodka like
Led Zeppelin used to do."
Professionalism has become
especially important to MC Chris
in the past few years, as he's used
more of his profits to support
charity than to supply his "nerd
cave" with new toys and gadgets.
"I have a nephew who was
born with cystic fibrosis, and as
soon as I found out, I decided to
change the way I do business," he
said. "I devote 50 percent of my
profits to a cystic fibrosis founda-
tion.... When I'm at home, I sell
my possessions to raise money,
and now there's almost nothing in
my apartment. If I buy something
for $45, I eventually start feeling
guilty and think, 'This is $45 for
cystic fibrosis,' and I sell it."
While the artist sees his future
packed with cartoons, music and
tours, his goals for these creations
will remain the same.
"I just want to keep raising as
much money as I can, and I see
the cartoon to get the word out
there about cystic fibrosis and
what people can do to help," he
said. "We can get together. We
can have a good time. Let's do
something good, too. We have all
this money. ... Let's try to stop a
els, you always know the precise
number of pages you have left
before All Is Revealed - you can
even peek ahead if you're into
that sort of thing.
With television, I'm going to
blame it on the procedural. Crime
procedurals, from "Dragnet" in
the 1950s to the current "CSI"
franchise, introduce, investi-
gate and solve crimes (usually
murders) ina swift 44 minutes
Twenty years later, American
audiences are still about instant
gratification, and can't handle a
serialized whodunit. We were
robbed of the Further Adventures
of Dale Cooper, so can we try for
redemption with "The Killing?"
Pandey is solving mysteries,
but slowly. To help him out,
e-mail kspandey Olumich edu.
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RELEASE DATE- Monday, September 12, 2011
Los Angeles Times Daily Crossword Puzzle
Edited by Rich Norris and Joyce Nichols Lewis
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By EMILY BOUDREAU ters ranging from health officials
Daily Arts Writer to civilians all linked together
by the virus. However, because
According to Doctor Erin there are so many storylines, no
Mears (Kate Winslet, "Revolu- one is given the screen-time that
tionary Road"), the average per- would allow it to fully develop.
son touches There's a lot of jumping around
his or her face and the movie doesn't feel com-
about 3,000 plete -it's more of an apocalyptic
times a day. Contagion scenario than a movie.
This means However, the lack of cohesion
human beings At Quality 16 in the plot doesn't really matter.
are crawling and Showcase The movie's main focus isn't the
with germs technicalities of a virus or even
and other sorts W B those of a plotline. Rather, what is
of wee beas- important is the paranoiathat fol-
ties. Director Steven Soderbergh lows a large-scale epidemic and
("The Informant") expands on the wayindividuals react in tough
this fact and amplifies it into a
hypochondriac's worst night-
mare in "Contagion."
The enemy in "Contagion" is
the invisible virus, lurking on a
door handle, incubating inside
the man next to you on the bus
and waiting on the rim of a glass.
The deadly virus starts with
Beth Emhoff (Gwyneth Paltrow,
"Country Strong") and branches
out from there, baffling doctors
around the world who can't keep
up with the disease's mutations.
Widespread panic, riots and
The movie follows different
narrative strands and charac-
situations. The movie's char-
acters are completely human,
evidenced not only in dramatic
seizure-induced death scenes, but
also in their interactions. Beth
cheats on her husband Mitch
(Matt Damon, "The Adjustment
Bureau"). Doctor Mears, despite
her skills and training, isn't 4
See CONTAGION, Page 9A