Notes from the Kraken: November 1st 2015

In All, Notes by David

Welcome again to We Have Always Lived in the Kraken, a pop culture blog transmitted directly to you from the belly of the beast. Here in the Notes we’ll show you this week’s posting schedule, but first, a little Seafood for Thought.

This past week was a sad one for me, as the pop culture site Grantland shut down for good. Admittedly, the writing was on the wall once it was clear that Bill Simmons would not be returning to ESPN. Still, knowing what was coming doesn’t make this any less sad. When Grantland started four years ago it navigated a bumpy road, but once the kinks were worked out it slowly morphed into a power house for critical thought on sports, pop culture, and so much more. The freedom writers were given on the site was inspiring, and they responded by churning out consistently excellent work week after week. Grantland was a truly a standard that all other blogs and sources of critical thoughts should aspire to. It’s true that all of the writers will still be writing, so it is not like they are gone forever, but I am saddened by the fact that I will no longer simply be able to find all of them in one great place. Plus I don’t know how my work-out schedule will be able to handle the loss of the many, many Grantland podcasts I used to listen to each week. In the wake of this news, let’s just say the Kraken was a dark place at times (well, darker than usual).  Of course, the show must go on, so thank you, Grantland for being so very awesome. I pour a 40 out in honor of your memory. Just know you will be missed.

David Robertson

From the depths of the Kraken, here is what we are bringing you this week.


  • Killtoberfest 3 has come to a furious conclusion as Kyu unleashed a deluge of reviews over the Halloween weekend, so come take a look what he has done.


  • Nothing new today (other than these very notes), but our archive is slowly shaping up, so why don’t you check out some of the entries you may have missed?


  • Never one to rest on his laurels (what is a laurel, anyway? is it a flower?), today Kyu debuts his new column, The Screening Room, where every Tuesday he’ll review a movie he’s seen the previous week. Up first, Kyu discusses a very underrated horror film: Driving Miss Daisy.


  • Another Halloween has come and gone, and another Killtoberfest has ended. Kyu offers the traditional wrap-up and awards ceremony recapping the ‘fest, before enjoying a much needed respite.


  • Keskel joins the blogging action to answer the quintessential question about anime: is it Nothing But Trash? In the premiere entry for this column, he examines Dragon Crisis, which I can only assume is a lot like the hit arcade game Time Crisis with one crucial difference. Not sure you are enough of an otaku to understand what is going on? Don’t worry, Keskel has written a Primer on How to Speak Otaku so you can learn everything you wanted (or more likely didn’t want) to know about anime and otaku culture.


  • The Kraken is tired and demanded a break, so nothing new today. The great leviathan is, however, amenable to you browsing through our archives. Try not to get lost in his endless inner space.


  • TV Roulette shows up at the end of the week with USA’s Satisfaction. Will that prove to be an apt title, or is USA just toying with my emotions?
  • Baturdays continue with Detective Comics #30, in which it turns out that Doctor Death isn’t dead at all! Who could have seen that coming besides everyone?

Spotlight on Blogs Past:

Something a little different this week. In honor of Kyu’s launching of The Screening Room we offer his classic shot-for-shot review of a very long scene from The Conversation.

Catch of the Week:

Each and every week the residents here in the Kraken will offer one recommendation for the week that we think you all would enjoy. It might be a movie. It might be a book. Who knows? This is your… Catch of the Week.

David: When comics and graphic novels want to, they can really bring an experience unlike any other, combining words and art together in perfect harmony. One such example is Joe Kelly’s I Kill Giants. Released in 2008, this series is a perfect blend of visual, narrative, and emotional bliss. The story keeps you enthralled from beginning to end, and is a must read for all.

Kyu: With Killtoberfest over and November’s pleasant chill blowing at the eaves, a young man’s heart turns from horror movies to beloved books. This week I’m curling up with the classic sci-fi novel A Scanner Darkly. Philip K. Dick’s paranoid masterpiece about an undercover narcotics officer tasked with investigating himself is one of the funniest and saddest reactions to the drug wars ever written. One chapter and you’ll be hooked–thankfully that’s a lot less dangerous than getting addicted to Substance D. The extremely faithful film adaptation from Richard Linklater is also well worth your time.

Keskel: This week I’m recommending the anime The Perfect Insider. An adaptation of a Japanese novel from 1997, it’s a dark mystery/thriller that totally eschews most of the stylistic and narrative traits of modern Japanese culture.  It’s airing right now, so there’s time to watch the mystery as it unfolds week to week.

That’s it for this week. We hope you continue to find the Kraken to your liking. If you happen to see candy lying around, go for it. If you happen to see the trick-or-treaters who dropped their candy, please don’t help them. They belong to the Kraken now.