Bats, man

“Uh, sorry, Batgirl. Misdial. We were trying to reach The Taxman.”

“Today, humanity is just one misunderstanding, one miscalculation away from nuclear annihilation.” — U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres, speaking at a U.N. conference on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons.

Oh, good. I’ve often wondered what it would take to put an end to the proliferation of dumbass superhero movies. A global thermonuclear holocaust might just get ’er done.

Or maybe we just need the right supervillain.

It wasn’t the Joker, the Penguin, or the Riddler who croaked “Batgirl” in her crib. No, the killer was the Green Eyeshade at Warner Bros-Discovery-HBO Max p/b AT&T, who discovered — with tens of millions already pounded down this particular Bat-hole — that writing off a made-for-streaming Bat-flick on the conglomerate’s Bat-taxes would not be at all, well … batty.

Industry insiders cite two changes between concept and execution. The first, in ownership, makes this one-time “purchase accounting maneuver” possible, as long as the movie is never released in any way, shape, or form; and the second, in strategy, aims to once again give theaters a head start over streaming as in days of yore.

With a budget made for television, “Batgirl” apparently began life as a B movie in more ways than one. But it can’t be a net positive when the entertainment press is quoting sources as saying that “the film tested once, and the result wasn’t that bad. …”

Too bad for TV? Have these people seen TV?

But when studio CEO David Zaslav tells investors in a second-quarter corporate earnings call, “We’re not going to put a movie out unless we believe in it. And that’s it,” well … piss on the fire and call in the bats, son. If a cameo from Michael Keaton can’t save you, you’re fucked.

Speaking of fucked, how many of you have bomb shelters? Raise your hands … yes, you there, crouched under your desks as if we were all reliving Those Fabulous Sixties.

Which we very well may be, if you listen to the U.N. secretary-general.

“The clouds that parted following the end of the Cold War are gathering once more,” Guterres warned in his remarks to the 10th Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

“We have been extraordinarily lucky so far. But luck is not a strategy. … Eliminating nuclear weapons is the only guarantee they will never be used.”

Yeah, well, good luck with that, Tony ol’ tiger. We can’t even cut back on “Spider-Man” movies.

While we’re debating whether “The Sandman” is true to Neil Gaiman’s original vision, you can bet your Batarang that some miscreant is trying to steal a tactical nuclear weapon from the Russkies, hoping to vaporize a hospital full of nuns, widder women, and crippled children in Ukraine, and then sit back and watch the fun.

The subsequent tit for tat as old scores get settled would quickly strip the planet of its tits, and also its tats. Anyone who can swing a bat (har de har har) will be stepping up to the plate, and the game will not be called on account of accountancy. Not even Michael Keaton can save us.

The good news is, this will make for some spectacular TV. The bad news? It will be on every channel at once. Welcome to Fyou Island, folks.

Not everyone will get voted off the isle, of course. There will be survivors, in remote spots like Tierra del Fuego. And people being what they are, some bored techie-turned-sheepherder in the former factory town of Rio Grande will eventually link one of the locally produced netbooks, powered by a solar panel, to the scattered strands of the once-mighty Internet.

Of an evening, weary of sheep, he will follow this thread, and then that one, and who knows? He might even unearth the digital archives of Warner Bros-Discovery-HBO Max p/b AT&T, buried deep beneath the glowing remains of Tinseltown in a blastproof vault.

Maybe he stumbles across that unfinished “Batgirl” movie, with its Latina star, and watches it.

“Hijo de la chingada,” he will mutter to himself. “This sucks.”

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12 Responses to “Bats, man”

  1. Russ Williams Says:

    Is the Bat-hole in the Bat-room?

  2. Pat O'Brien Says:

    If the post apocalypse ex-techie shepherd has any luck, and good taste, he will find this post and say, “Gee, there was some intelligent life around back then. Chapeau, mi amigo, that was well done!

    As far as Putin fucking around with a Ukrainian nuke power plant, and probably a pocket full of tactical nukes, what could go wrong with another old man dictator hell bent on returning to the cold war? Probably gives Khal stage 4 nightmares.

    What to do? Grab a bike and go for a ride, or grab a guitar and make some music. Putin can’t screw with that, unless dumpster gets back in the oval.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Thanks, matey. I am now and then seized by notions, and the only way to rid myself of them is to write them down.

      How’s that new git-box treating you?

    • Pat O’Brien Says:

      It is a sweet sounding and playing Martin. The tech, John, up at Rainbow Guitars in Tucson did a great set up on it. I put on a fresh set of Monel strings, old style nickel wrapped strings, and oh buddy did the old school, front porch blues sound come out! Be doing this song at the jam this afternoon, and at the neighborhood rec center, with my friend and mentor Alan, on Sunday. You should hear his finger picking solos! My third time singing and playing in public. First time was a stage fright disaster.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Good on ye, Paddy me lad. It takes stones to take the stage.

        I haven’t played an instrument in public since high school, unless you count the keyboards attached to various typewriters and computers. What came out of them was not exactly Bach and often stunk in the eyes.

      • Pat O’Brien Says:

        I would liken playing and singing in public to signing up for a race and pinning on a number. It isn’t necessary to enjoy or excel at the sport or activity. We all know fast riders and excellent musicians who never raced or played for an audience. But, when you do it, you will never forget it.

  3. Shawn Says:

    Rio Grande TDF? I had to dig out the old atlas (er, um Goggle Lost) to find where that was. Somehow I suspect being in the area of consistent circular winds may not be such a good place to be, fallout spreading as it will do. Perhaps hidden away in an old gold mine farther north in the Andes might be better.

    Real TV isn’t any good? You obviously don’t watch reruns. With all the great ads for cars, drugs and bent penis remedies, you just don’t know what you’re missing.

    As for the Loser coordinating the unprovoked warfare on Ukraine, there is only so much sand he has to continue to add to the hourglass of his leadership. If time and the inventory of ethnic russian soldiers allow, he may be around long enough to be done in by a mob of suicide bombing puppies that are let loose in the kremlin. Who can resist hugging a furry pooch. Boom!

    Thanks for batting another column out of the ballpark.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      It’s weird how what remains of my mind works, when (and if) it works at all.

      Being of a certain age, the dire warning from the U.N. chief struck a certain chord, but I couldn’t think of anything much to do with it that hadn’t been done before.

      And the “Batgirl” thing had possibilities — seriously, a superhero movie gets shelved as a tax dodge? — but I couldn’t think of anything there that wasn’t totally inside baseball about comics.

      But when it proved that the demise of a second-tier BatFlick had more legs than The End of the World (As We Know It), well, shuckens, we was off to the races.

      Incidentally, I picked Tierra del Fuego at random, then learned through Wikipedia that sheep ranching was once a big deal in the province, and that today factories in Rio Grande crank out cheap netbooks and laptops. Bingo.

      It ain’t all fun and games here … sometimes Your Humble Narrator actually learns something whilst cranking out the hees and haws.

  4. SAO Says:

    Reading Unfamiliar Fish, Sarah Vowell, right now. History of the colonization of Hawaii. Seems to me, the story of humanity is a never-ending cycle of knuckleheads rising to power. We’ve learned nothing in 6,000 years.

    Somehow, dudes who got beat up by the jocks, rejected by the cheerleaders, not cool enough to hang with the musicians or theater kids, and not smart enough for the nerds, these guys keep getting handed the reins.

    • Pat O’Brien Says:

      That’s an astute observation SAO! And if they are butt ugly, like cheeto benito, along with the rest that you describe it makes them even more incompetent and paranoid.

    • JD Says:

      SAO: I’ll defer to two individuals much more intelligent and articulate than I.
      Mark Twain: “History doesn’t repeat itself; but it often rhymes”.
      Albert Einstein: “Two things are infinite: The universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”
      I often wonder whether it’s arrogance or egocentricity that makes us call ourselves homo SAPIENS. Both? Hubris?

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