Archive for the 'Pop Culture' Category


Hey Look! Plagiarism!

On Love in the Time of Chasmosaurs, this cover for Avengers #12 was posted. I thought it looked familiar…


The comments confirmed my suspicion: the Therizinosaurus design and the Protoceratops in the background are clones of Henriette and Bix from James Gurney’s Dinotopia books. Which are like my favorite books from my childhood.

This is some bullshit. How come there’s so many talented artists creating original designs, yet professionals working in the industry like Dustin Weaver feel they can get away with this?

EDIT: Apparently Dustin Weaver has a blog, and basically admits to it. He calls it “homage”. I can appreciate wanting to do that, but I don’t think he pulled it off here.


Nobody’s Taking Your N-Word Away

So! I heard there’s this new version of Huck Finn that says “slave” instead of “nigger”. I have heard this several godzillion times. As have you. This story seems to sting America more than a congresswoman getting a bullet in the brain.

Disclaimer: I, too, think it’s stupid. So do the vast majority of people, including most non-stupid people.

How do you differentiate between the stupid and non-stupid? Easy. The stupid ones bring up rap music.

Facebook! Help me out!

Not depicted: Jello puddin' pops

Or, they think that all future copies of the book will be edited, and current copies burned en masse by order of the Ministry of Literature.

Also, rap!

Or…I don’t even know what the hell this is.

I censored this lady's name. You will never know the historical context and your education will suffer as a result. Political correctness gone wild!

Either this woman is perpetrating the most slapdash retcon ever, or she’s somehow thinking of the word “raptor.” Your knowledge of Latin is only impressive if you get your terms right, hun.

Ah, remember the time when the Globe’s Facebook page was a lot less insufferable than comments on the Globe site itself? I blame you, intelligent tech-savvy youth, for teaching your dumb relatives how to set up Facebook accounts.

Anyway! Let’s tackle the censorship angle, shall we? It’s true, censoring the word is stupid and prudish. However, only one publisher is doing this. If you want the uncensored version, your limited options are every other publisher of the book. The one world government isn’t pulling a George Lucas and annihilating the original version. It’s an option for people who can’t handle “nigger” in a historical context. Stop making up stories about PC Police. In fact, the only calls for one version being banned completely seems to be coming from our side, from those who don’t understand that our version is not being completely replaced by the other version.

Now to the rap music part…why am I even dignifying this with a rebuttal? I could bring up privilege, reclamation, intent, all that to the white people who just have a bug up their arse about black people and wouldn’t want to hear the facts anyway. That’s all unnecessary, however.

We have established that the new Huck Finn is merely a censored alternative to the original, correct? So for this to be a double standard, it would have to be impossible for record companies to release censored versions of songs that normally have objectionable language. If you’re like me and have been burned by purchasing a “clean” CD at Wal-Mart (or worse, was exposed to Kidz Bop), you know this is not the case.

Sorry folks, but your demands for the scary black music to be neutered in retaliation are completely toothless. Tipper Gore already gave you Parental Advisory stickers, what more do you want?


A Thor Spot for White Supremacists

Heimdall as a fierce manly white man! FIERCE!

I haven’t read any of the Thor comics, so I wasn’t planning on seeing the upcoming movie. But goshdarnit, someone’s decided to boycott it. Now the wafting fumes of controversy strangely compel me to pay attention to a pop cultural phenomenon I would have otherwise ignored.

O Hollywood! Whose wrath have you provoked with your unwitting meddling?

Turns out its our very own Council of Conservative Christians. They’re mad because their second favorite religion (next to the cult of their wounded pride) is getting peeceeified with the casting of (I assume) a socialist Kenyan secret Muslim as Heimdall.

The Missouri-based Council of Conservative Citizens, labeled as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, writes that Marvel has “[declared] war on Norse mythology” by giving the pantheon “an insulting multi-cultural make-over” in the form of Idris Elba, the English actor known for his roles in The Wire, The Losers and The Office.

Hold up! A SCANDINAVIAN god is being played by an ENGLISH actor? What is Hollywood THINKING?!?

Normally I’m not a fan of racebending, but I’m more willing to let it slide if A. It’s the privileged actors who get the shaft, and B. It annoys white supremacists. Who wants to go see Thor with me?


Nuke Hollywood

Ready for some nightmare fuel?

Some studio thought this movie was a good idea, some director thought it would be a good idea to waste millions of dollars on replicating a cheap furry cosplay in CGI, and some ad gency thought this ad wouldn’t drive people away in screaming throngs.

We don’t deserve this world.


Hollywood, Racism and Trophy Hunting Aliens

My movie review protocol is hindered when it comes to monster movies, as my critical mind is temporarily overwhelmed by my reptilian hindbrain that loves to watch monsters tear various living things apart. For example, here’s my review, in its entirety, of 2005′s King Kong remake from my old Xanga blog:

OMG dinosaurs and giant gorillas and giant bugs and bats and they’re all fighting OMG so cool but then the gorilla died and I was sad.

Yesterday I saw Predators with a friend. I enjoyed the movie, don’t get me wrong, but somehow other things besides awesome monster fights leaked through. My slightly above kindergarten-level review is such:

There are aliens that hunt stuff called Predators. They dropped Adrian Brody on a planet, then he found other dudes and a chick and they all spazzed out and tried to kill each other. Then they all were obnoxious stereotypes. The Yakuza guy walked barefoot and was quiet because he was an exotic Japanese guy. The Mexican guy was a drug runner and he died first because he was old and not white. They walked around until they went like “oh hey we’re in space”. Then some alien dogs show up and they fought and then the dudes found the Predators and fought them and they killed the black guy. Then Laurence Fishburne was nutzoid and then the Predators made him explode and then the Predators chased the people some more. A Predator shot a Russian, but then he blew up the Predator so it was ok. A Predator ripped out a guy’s spine and that was cool. The Yakuza guy knew how to swordfight because he was Japanese and they all know martial arts. He fought a Predator and died. There was also a little Predator that was picked on by the big Predators and then Adrian Brody let it go. The little Predator and the big Predator fought and the little Predator lost. Then Topher Grace was nutzoid. Then Adrian Brody fights the Predator and it loses and I was sad. Then there was weird political subtext when the only survivors were the white Israeli chick and the white American dude. Then Little Richard started playing for some reason. The end. I like monsters.

You know you’re going to have trouble enjoying things when sociology bubbles around in your id. But I can’t help it really. Every day I see more evidence that Hollywood is really really freaking racist (along with sexist). You may have seen it too. The most blatant and newsworthy recent example is The Last Airbender.

If you haven’t heard about it: Avatar: The Last Airbender was a cartoon on Nickelodeon about this fantasy world of element themed nations. It managed to be insanely popular with critics and audiences despite having little to no white people in the cast (disclaimer: I haven’t watched the show). The show was such a hit that Hollywood decided to make a life action movie with M. Night Shyamalan directing. Airbender fans were happy (assuming they weren’t familiar with Shyamalan’s horrible work) until the casting info was released.

Turns out nearly all of the main characters, who were based on several Inuit and Asian cultures, were made white for the movie. Non-white roles were reserved for extras and bad guys. Post-racial society, you guys.

Hollywood seems to have bitten off more than it can chew in this case. Due to the efforts of the fanbase, nearly every critic was made aware of the casting choices and added it to the adaptation’s many offenses, such as being an M. Night Shyamalan movie. It’s at 8% at, which is simply embarrassing.

Something tells me this won’t make studio execs think that making movies with white leads is too risky. Funny that.

Even if Paramount learns its lesson from this, it has a long way to go. On this series of posts, the stats on race at Paramount pictures are stark:

This is probably similar to most Hollywood studios. Predators was made by Troublemaker Studios, which is certainly making better movies then Paramount. I need to see more Troublemaker movies and see if they fare worse or better in the Non-white dude rates.

Knock it off, Hollywood. We all equally deserve to zone out and  enjoy monster-on-monster violence.


Kaje’s Komic Kreviews!: Jurassic Park: Redemption #1

There is a meme that goes on in comics classes that you don’t have to be a good drawer to be a comic artist. This is false and misleading. It’s true that you don’t have to have Katsuhiro Otomo level skillz, but if your artwork is both poorly rendered and boring, it’s probably best that you stick with poetry jams. Or in this case,

Yesterday I saw the first issue of Jurassic Park: Redemption and, being the classy connoisseur of the franchise, squealed like a ecstatic guinea pig while fishing for change to buy it.

Here is the cover art by Frank Miller. Cool, eh?

Alas, Frank Miller just did the cover, while the actual comic is penciled by Nate Van Dyke. They ought to make up some sort of platitude about how book covers can potentially mislead you as to the quality of the book.  This is what you find inside JP:R.

I’m not complaining about scientific accuracy, this is Jurassic Park after all. I’m complaining about oh my god that’s the most awful splash page I’ve ever seen in my life. Was Nate Van Dyke shanghaied into doing this project and did the worst job he could do on purpose? Did he ask a friend if he could borrow a Jurassic Park DVD and somehow ended up with a 50′s man-in-a-rubber-suit dinosaur flick? You’d think if you were doing a Jurassic Park comic, the first thing you’d ask a potential artist is “can you draw dinosaurs competently?” That’s kind of the whole reason for JP’s existence. I’ve seen harlequin babies that were easier on the eye.

It doesn’t get much better, and it’s not just the dinosaurs that suffer. Everything is just so freaking ugly. The human characters have no life to them whatsoever. Sometimes the art doesn’t fit the text or isn’t continuous with the panels proceeding it. For example, one panel shows a truck driver leaving to take a whizz in the bushes; the next panel he’s being hurled from the top of his trailer.

Mr. Van Dyke is of the school of scratchy dry brush artwork style that is typical of the grungy horror comic, the kind that usually feature zombies and middle-of-nowhere truckstops and people wearing flannel. I’m not a big fan of that style even in those kind of comics. The Jurassic Park series isn’t grungy. It’s sleek and adventurous. It’s both the Lost World and the World of Tomorrow. Jurassic Park is a John Williams score, this comic is a crappy hellbilly band. I don’t care if this comic takes place in rural Texas, it just doesn’t fit.

The artwork’s pretty much ruined this for me, but let’s hash the plot anyway. It’s 13 years after the events of the first movie. Lexx Murphy is the CEO of Lexxcrops (hee!) and is anti-Jurassic Park. Tim Murphy is in charge of grandpa’s company and also seems to want to get JP running again. Meanwhile, there’s a secret corral of dinosaurs being kept in Glen Rose Texas.Which is being run by a guy who was eaten by a T-Rex in the second movie. Even though this takes place after the third. I guess he was bitten by a mosquito which was fossilized in amber and they cloned him back. Or maybe Lexx and Tim were DEAD THE WHOLE TIME!!!

Speaking of Glen Rose and speaking of redemption, this comic would’ve totally redeemed itself if it took a dig at Glen Rose’s creationist infestation. Alas! Maybe they’re saving it for a later issue.

The first issue ends with a stupid-looking shape-shifting Carnotaurus breaking loose and eating various large mammals. I wish you well on your mammal eating adventures, Fake-notaurus. I’m afraid I can’t bring myself to accompany you.


Break Out the Sham-Paggin

Little toy Zapp Brannigan

Oooga chaka.

You’re all familiar with the biological clock. Supposedly there’s a little alarm clock in a woman’s body (situated betwixt the soul gland and the good smell bladder, if I recall) that goes off when she reaches her late thirties, triggering auditory and visual hallucinations of dancing CGI babies. So says my source for all my medical information, Dr. Dumpyfat Sitcomman.

I’m going through something similar right now. Except I’m 24, and instead of babies I can’t stop thinking about Futurama.

Seriously, I find myself correcting people by yelling “[insert plural noun here] DO NOT WORK THAT WAY!”   The word “Jurassic,” a word which usually fills my heart with joy, reminds me of that stupid episode with the dog and makes me sad. I’m tempted to do my feminist whinging in truncated Amazon speak- we no can dunk, but good fundamentals! At night my dreams are haunted by a shadowy figure, accompanied by the aura of legend and the overpowering stink of velour. All this is reaching a crescendo as the brand new season rapidly approaches.

You did know Comedy Central was making new episodes, right?

Anyway! Let’s all wallow in our sick hallucinations together until Thursday finally arrives! How about we share our favorite Futurama quotes?

Zapp: You want the rest of the shampaggin?

Leela: No. And it’s pronounced ‘champagne

…Comedy Central, you had better not drop the ball on this. My various glands and bladders and meat clocks won’t be able to handle it.

A Game for the Bored Alcoholic Audiophile in You

Introducing the Drinking Game for your amusement!

You Will Need:

-Internet access

-An MP3 player with a shuffle setting.

- Drinks!

How to Play

Set your player to “shuffle”. Look up the song that comes up on and read the comments. For the duration of the song, take a drink if:

Someone thinks the song is about drugs.

Someone thinks the song is about bisexuality.

Someone thinks it’s about the Bush administration. Take two drinks if the song predates the Bush era.

Someone doesn’t even bother to provide a theory as to the song’s meaning but just gushes about the artist or song.

Someone doesn’t even bother to provide a theory as to the song’s meaning but just flames the artist and the fans.

Someone thinks a lyric is about abortion, miscarriage, or stillbirth.

Someone manages to misinterpret straightforward lyrics.

Someone weaves a web of convoluted postmodern analysis when it obviously has nothing to do with the song. Take two if they invent allusions to Shakespeare, Dante or the Bible.

You spot a misspelling of the word “hypocrisy.”

You spot an obviously false urban legend touted as the truth. (Hotel California is not about Satanism, you dolts!)

Someone mentions how they play this song when they’re engaged in carnal naughtiness. Take two if you genuinely fear for the person’s future.

You find a mondegreen, either in the comments or the lyrics.

You find a commenter with a username referencing Nickelback, My Chemical Romance or Pink Floyd.

You find some old dork reminiscing about his/her past life (or that of a friend) as a roadie/groupie/disc jockey/dealer that knew the artist.

You find a conspiracy theorist rabbiting on about something that’s either only tangentially related to the song, or not at all. Take two if the guy is somebody other than a white power Neo-Nazi.

The thread evolves into a massive flame war over the artist or song at hand.

The thread is mostly comprised of comments correcting the schmuck that couldn’t type the right lyrics.


You now have liver disease! Enjoy!


We Don’t Need Feminism Because We’re Equal Now, part 1 of Infinity

Daria is not amused.

When a movie with a male lead bombs, the reasons are understood to be many and diverse.

When a movie with a female lead bombs (or doesn’t make 1 gazillion dollars right out the gate), there is only one reason why.

Are there plans to do any more sequels for the recently released DC animated films?
We had originally planned to do sequels for Wonder Woman and Green Lantern, but Wonder Woman’s sales started out extremely slow and then over time were eventually able to catch up to probably Justice League Frontier. The Exec’s [sic] decided because it wasn’t able to sell quickly right away, where as Justice League was, that there wouldn’t be any more female super hero films right now. We were developing and hoping to get started on a Batgirl film based on Year One, but because of Wonder Woman’s slow sales start, that won’t be happening now.

It’s not because the screenplay was mangled by the executives, or bad advertising, or the half-assed “battle of the sexes” crap shoehorned in, or inept disregard for the source material. It couldn’t have been anything else other than the unacceptably high vagoo levels.

Strangely, Green Lantern’s disappointing sales haven’t blacklisted all male superhero movies. Although, I shudder to think what they would have done if the Green Lantern they used was the John Stewart version.

This isn’t new; in fact the head exec of Warner Bros. made it a policy for their live action films way back in 2007.

Warner Bros president of production Jeff Robinov has made a new rule that “We are no longer doing movies with women in the lead”, according to DeadlineHollywood. Apparently, Robinov won’t even look at a script with a female lead.

Hurray for our post-sexist society.

I sit here typing this while watching episodes of Daria. For those unfamilar with the show, Daria was a hilarious MTV cartoon starring an unconventional teenage girl struggling against the jaw-dropping stupidity of those around her.

For years it was the top 3 requested shows on Let me repeat that. Top 3. As in this was a DVD that consumers were begging for. It was at the top of that list for years.

So they solved the issue with music copyrights, and they finally released the freaking thing a few days ago. As I type, Amazon says it is the second highest selling TV series on DVD (next to True Blood, which if I’m not mistaken also stars a chick). I imagine it will only climb as people realize “HOLY MONKEYS THEY FINALLY RELEASED A DARIA DVD!!11!!”

Daria’s vagoo doesn’t seem to be slowing her down any. Maybe, just maybe, that isn’t what the audience at large cares about? Maybe they care about competent filmmaking and engaging stories?

Huh, yeah right. Make way for the latest DC superhero movie, Wonder Man. Keanu Reeves stars as an Air Force pilot that crash lands on an island of peaceful blue-skinned Amazonians. He becomes super competent in their way of life in the course of a week, and leads them to battle against Spartans. Because they can’t do it themselves.  Also the Amazonian princess Diana falls in love with him. She’s a strong female character- but not too strong! Coming soon to a theater near you.

Is the eco-Obama-terrorist that sabotaged the Gulf’s oil rig reading this? Can you do it again, only this time somehow pull it off so that it only soaks Warner Bros. execs in sweet, sweet fossilized pollutants? That would be great.


A Nightmare On Elm Street: Oh NoES!

I normally avoid remakes like dimly lit public restrooms, and I avoid giving Michael Bay money like dimly lit public restrooms with piped in Gretchen Wilson music. But sometimes you have to pee, and sometimes you have to see A Nightmare on Elm Street.

You can read a review anywhere to get how boring it is, so instead I will provide my mental notes so you can pretend you‘re in the theater making fun of it with me. HERE BE SPOILERS, I recommend you read anyway instead of seeing this crap movie:

–Before the movie even starts, a woman and her son sit in front of me and my friends. A woman and her son who couldn’t have been older than six.

You should know by now that I’m no fan of kneejerk mollycoddling  of kids. Give your kids credit. I was watching R-rated movies when I was ten. In fact, when I went to see Kick-Ass, I pretended to be the cousin of five strange 14 year old kids who wanted to get in, because c’mon, it‘s Kick-Ass. I’m nice like that.

But you do not take a kid under six to A Nightmare On Elm Street. Come on. Freddy Krueger is the ultimate nightmare fuel for little kids. Even the G-rated parody on Tiny Toons, Freddy Cougar, made me cover my eyes when I was that age. The only exposure to Freddy at that age should be at home, where your child can run out of the room or hide under a pillow and only take in snippets of Mr. Krueger. Not in a theater.

– The credits have me cracking up already. What they did was write the credits in SPOOKY chalk on SPOOKY sidewalk. Which was cool. But some mouth breathing test audience member (or some other meddler, this is Hollywood after all) must have had trouble reading them, so they superimpose normal credits on top of the chalk, which completely ruins the effect. LOL redundant credits.

– The first scene takes place in a diner. Your first scene should not be as tedious as this.

– Now we meet the other boys. I have trouble telling them apart. All I can notice is that they’ve gone all-out on the eye makeup. Normally in movies, it’s the girls you have trouble telling apart; here the two are helpfully color coded for the audience (Kris blonde, Nancy brunette). Regardless of sex, they’re all really, really boring. I would take talking about prom or a big party over “Hey, isn‘t that Kris?” “Hey, you are attracted to Nancy.” “Sorry, that guy just broke up with blonde girl.”

–Even the first death is boring. Slit your own throat, wow. In the original, the first death was a girl being thrown around the room like a rag doll and then getting stripped to ribbons by an invisible assailant. You’re not even trying.

– Cue the crying six year old, as predicted.

– Funeral. God, all these people are boring boring boring. I take it Kris is supposed to be Tina? Maybe we’ll get her tossed around the room after all.

– OMG Kris has an Aussie Shepherd!…that dog had better not die. It’s going to die, isn’t it? I remember it used to be that the dog and the annoying kids never died in horror movies. Apparently the UN lifted the ban on dogs getting killed in horror movies, since now everyone does it.  They could have made it a Yorkie or something, just leave the Aussies alone.

– This movie really abuses the dream fakeout, and it becomes repetitious really quick.

– The scene with Freddy pressing through the wall is rehashed, but it’s done with CGI. I want to spank you, movie. You could have done a practical effect for less money and to greater effect. HATE, HATE , HATE.

– This movie shows Freddy way too much. Less is more, guys!

One of the highlights of this movie is Jackie Earle Haley, who is fantastic in everything. Especially when he’s Flashback Freddy– he just screams “creepy groundskeeper that loves children.” The fact remains that Freddy with Robert Englund just isn’t Freddy. But Jackie tries his best, and his best is pretty darn good.

I don’t like his makeup, though. The snake eyes, the Jonah Hex-style mouth, it’s just not working. He looks like a desiccated baboon with syphilis. I imagine a lot of burn victims look like that, but still.

– They killed the dog. The number of characters I care about are back to zero.

– Aha! They redid Tina’s death! Just as I predicted! It doesn’t have the same oomph, because it should have been the first death. In the original, it was like a roller coaster– the big hill goes first. It’s just rote here.

– …why did that guy run back out again?!? Cops are after him! Doesn’t Nancy have a closet or something?

– The dream in the bookstore was especially pointless. Although I appreciate the plug for Powell’s bookstore.

– Nancy remarks on Quentin’s crucifix, he says you have to believe in something. The crucifix, or the topic of faith, is never mentioned again. Somebody needs to get out their Syd Field books.

– A scene with the be-Speedoed boy’s swim team. THANK YOU MOVIE. Finally, something pleasing to the eye. Also, Quentin standing around in Nightware Flashback World in his Speedo while Flashback Mob runs around him made me LOL. He’s the Ghost of Speedos Past!

– “Let me just slip my coat off while I’M DYING IN A FIRE.” Also, where’s the hat? And glove? How do you get those items if you don’t die while wearing them? Come to think of it, why do ghosts wear clothes anyway? Stupid movie metaphysics.

– While watching I thought “Gigablast” was a fake movie search engine, like 555 area codes. Then I found out it was real. They should make a fake search engine for movies, though. It’d be cool.

– The video blog by that kid just made me groan. It would have been more effective if they just stuck with the headlines. So, so fake.

– The bodybag standing up is an effect that actually works. About time.

– At the hospital. Hey! I just realized that this movie passes the Bechdel Test! Now, if it just doesn’t suck so much. And there’s adrenaline in an unguarded, unlocked cart? Oh I can see how thaWHAAAAAAAAT?


– I’m going to tackle the pedophilia plotline in one big note…

A big difference between this and the original is that it goes into what happened to Freddy that made him a goofy hypnagogic serial killer. In the original, it was just “Freddy killed kids, so the town burned him, now he’s killing teens in dreams,” and that’s that. In this one, he’s not a child killer but a child molester, and we get flashbacks and tidbits as to what he actually did.

For most of the movie it was implied he was an innocent victim of mob mentality. Oh, he wasn’t a bad person, society made him that way. Barf. This works in some movies, and often in real life. But it doesn’t work if you want to make a horror movie monster.

Examples: Take Silence of the Lambs. Buffalo Bill and Hannibal Lecter don’t get flashbacks explaining their motives. Buffalo Bill doesn’t skin fat chicks because Beth Ditto pantsed him in front of the school assembly. You don’t know why he does it, he just does. That’s what makes him scary.

Now compare that to the prequel Red Dragon. The killer (I can’t even remember his name) is introduced with a sob story right off: we pan through his house with a voiceover of his grandmother abusing him. Poor dearie. You just want to be loved. We’re not scared of him anymore; at best we pity him and at worst we resent him for being such a weak villain.

It looked like NoES 2010 was going to do the same thing. But we get to the end, and it turns out he wasn’t the innocent victim of mob mentality. He actually was a messed up pedophile. It’s one of the few unsettling moments in the movie.

One review for this movie said that they should have stuck with the mob mentality hyptohesis to “give it depth” or something. Bullcrap. That would have made it a million times worse. Give the movie credit, it’s one of the few things it gets right.

I still don’t know if fleshing him out like that is an improvement over the original. They said they wanted a less campy Freddy, and they got it. I just prefer the old one I guess.

– Speaking of humor and camp, I just realized that there were no  jokes in this movie. I just realized what an aberration that is. Nearly all movies, even “serious” (cough) ones, have at least some attempts at humor. Without humor, a movie is lifeless.

– CGI blood coming through the ceiling makes me pine for the practical effects of the original again.

–Nancy in this one is a whole lot more useless than the first. She only gets one kick ass moment.

— The jump ending is the most aggravating thing of all. We see it coming, yet we also don’t see how it ties in with anything. At least this dumb movie is over.

I’m going to watch the unrated version of The Descent to cleanse my palate. Now THAT’S a good horror movie.

Donate to the Kaje!

My Zazzle Store

My Spreadshirt Store

Help a broke blogger and buy some NSFW merch at my Spreadshirt store!


July 2014
« Oct    
Join the best atheist themed blogroll!

Tweetin’ twootin’:


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 112 other followers

%d bloggers like this: