Tom Hanks = the Jimmy Stewart of our day?
January 12, 2001 4:12 PM   Subscribe

Tom Hanks = the Jimmy Stewart of our day? one of Salon's useful popular media pieces, but nothing you couldn't read on Sunday Arts section of the Times, such pieces being the Holy Ghost of Salon's Trinity (see inside for the Father and the Son)...
posted by MattD (12 comments total)
The Father: their overpowering onslaught of Democratic-boosting (and, occasionally Democratic-bashing-from-farther-left) political stories. Whoever would have thought that The Nation (or the The National Review, for that matter) could ever seem unpredictable in its ideology by comparison to any journal?

The Son: their seeming obsession, prosecuted mainly through the "Mothers Who Think" division, with exploring, defending and/or glamorizing the sexual identify and lifestyle of what for want of a better word would be considered the Sex in the City cohort -- smart women, of (mainly) white and upper/upper middle class backgrounds, of broad sexual appetites and experience, whether in their teens or in their 40s, whether single and fretful, single and happy, or married to supportive if occasionally frustratingly underpassionate bearded academics or journalists?
posted by MattD at 4:22 PM on January 12, 2001

"Overpowering," "onslaught," "obsession". . . give me a break. Like every other media outlet in the world, they have a certain take on things and certain target audiences. I mean, what's with all those stories about paleontologists in Natural History? And howcum Salon never has any stories about paleontologists in "Mothers that Think"? Damn them for not being all things to all people.
posted by rodii at 4:46 PM on January 12, 2001

I wish that Salon were a paper magazine just so I could write in and say, "Cancel my subscription." They used to be rather fun, but ever since the election went south they've been foaming at the editorial mouth with rabid commentary.

The only reason that I still stop by occasionally is to check for a new Camille Paglia column and that's becoming increasingly rare. Perhaps Ms. P has become disgusted with their boringly predictable political agenda.

I hope they hurry up and lay off the rest of their staff soon.
posted by MrBaliHai at 5:10 PM on January 12, 2001

Salon: pointless except for the comix.
posted by sonofsamiam at 7:51 PM on January 12, 2001

Tom Hanks = the Jimmy Stewart of our day?

Sadly , sadly . . . yes.
posted by ojsbuddy at 9:16 PM on January 12, 2001

60 minutes did this story weeks ago. /me opens up salon's hood and hooks up the jumper cables
posted by tomorama at 12:12 AM on January 13, 2001

Mind you, I did not read the Salon article. It's 3am my time, so I don't plan on doing it anytime soon, either. If they menton 60 minutes in the article, sue me.
posted by tomorama at 12:13 AM on January 13, 2001

Yeah, I only visit Salon for the K Kronicles (sic?). The articles have gotten so boring.
posted by ookamaka at 5:07 PM on January 13, 2001

I think Salon's "interestingness" has been affected by the loss of staff (they've had at least two big layoffs). The overall "quality" remains high, but the decrease in variety of viewpoints seems noticeable (and I don't mean simply politically).

I think this is a valid if rather obvious point, though. Jimmy Stewart? Sure, especially if you throw in a big lean toward Jack Lemmon. Hanks is great, although he's succumbing to his own greatness as other great actors have (Nicholson, Brando), and doing a narrower range of roles. Star turns.
posted by dhartung at 7:37 PM on January 13, 2001

I mean, what's with all those stories about paleontologists in Natural History?

The difference is that if you called up Natural History and asked what's with it, they'd tell you, and fully admit those sorts of people are their prime demographic. But if you asked someone at Salon why they're so overtly liberal, they'd say you were seeing things. They claim to be something they're not, namely a mainstream web magazine.

Not that it really matters that much in anything other than a moral sense; they're so blatant that everyone has long since figured them out. And that's a big part of the reason they're dying; If you're going to be that one-sided, you better be so great that you get twice as many of the potential readers from that side, since nobody else is going to be willing to bother with you. And Salon isn't that great.

I suppose it's San Francisco syndrome: Since everyone around them in the Bay Area (that they were willing to hang out with, anyway) was liberal and riding the dotcom wealth wave, they assumed everyone else in the country was just like them, and would want to read a liberal dotcom web mag. But it turned out that too many of the techie types out there are either conservative or possessed of a sort of warped social moderate/fiscal conservative Cyber-Libertarianism, and/or just not able to take as much self-absorbed snarkyness as Salon likes to dish out. To say nothing of the true liberals that find them all too upper-class-snotty to accept and would rather hang out at Indymedia or anyplace more egalitarian. Thus, not enough eyeballs, even before the money spigot started to dry up.

I never understood how they could name a section "Mothers That Think." It sounds so elitist; most mothers don't think?

Oh yeah, Hanks. Sure, he can be Stewart2K, as long as he doesn't end up on Jay Leno 40 years from now reading bad poems about his dog.
posted by aaron at 11:20 PM on January 13, 2001

The overall "quality" remains high, but the decrease in variety of viewpoints seems noticeable (and I don't mean simply politically).

Salon seems a lot more bitter to me after the layoffs, actually. You can almost feel the seething pain behind every article.
posted by kindall at 1:03 AM on January 14, 2001

I didn't mean to suggest that Salon was too liberal in its politics, rather that it seems to be distractingly possessed, in a way that other, equally-liberal, journals are not, by a couple of idees fixes -- protecting Clinton/Gore from any enemy, and defending rich white women against any suggestion that they can't have their sexual cake and eat it too.
posted by MattD at 1:52 PM on January 14, 2001

« Older SELECT 'name' FROM 'slave owners' BY 'gender'.   |   Bill O'Reilly raps Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments