Notes from the Kraken: September 25th 2016

In All, Notes by Kyu

Welcome again to We Have Always Live 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.

Wait, is this all just a weird marketing campaign for a special episode of The Apprentice?

American’s greatest and most ridiculous television show is only on every four years, but at least the seasons are interminably long, right? Tomorrow is the first general election Presidential Debate in 2016 between Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump, and in terms of television, this isn’t just Sweeps Week, it’s practically the damn Super Bowl. The debates are always huge television events, routinely drawing upwards of 50 million viewers. Here’s a chart I stole from a website with more scruples:

presidential debate ratings chart

But this is no ordinary debate, because this is no ordinary election. Ever since the conclusion of the primary season, this election has been an unprecedented shitstorm of lies, conspiracy theories, and insinuations. Even the truths that have come out about each candidate feel like avalanches of information–the endless details about Clinton’s email server, the labyrinthine history of Trump’s business dealings, etc. As someone who has been following the election very closely, it’s been more of an insane roller coaster than any other in my lifetime. I can’t even imagine how confusing it must be for those voters too busy to pay as much attention (you know, those people who have lives and aren’t terrible politics junkies). So Monday’s debate is really the first time since the conventions that most people will actually check in on the election and evaluate their candidates for President first-hand. Some people are predicting 100 million viewers, which would not only be an all-time record but one of the biggest television events of the year.

Try as I might, though, it’s impossible to look at this only as a night of entertainment. Even though I’m sure I’ll be having snacks and shouting at the screen like a loon, these debates are deadly serious. Depending on how they go, they could shift the current state of the race (at present, Clinton leads Trump by 1 to 5 points, depending on which pollsters you ask) as the candidates begin the last leg of their campaign. If Trump wins the debate, this could put him in the lead for the first time ever; but if Clinton comes out on top, that could clinch the election for her. The contrast between candidates is, to put it mildly, stark, and the winner of this election (and thus potentially this debate) will radically determine the direction of the country for the next four to eight years. We like to treat pop culture as serious business here at the Kraken, but this is one TV event that treats serious business like pop culture. Either way, we’ll all be watching closely.

Check out the action on every media platform known to man tomorrow at 9PM EST, and don’t forget to register to vote.

Josh Kyu Saiewitz

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

Monday: The fall television season is getting into full swing, but first, a look back at some longer TV trends, as David discusses The Fall and Rebirth of Syfy.

Tuesday: My crown is called content, a crown that seldom kings enjoy. Readers, too.

Wednesday: Brevity is the soul of wit, so today’s content is really, really witty. (The soul of the Kraken, on the other hand, is its archives.)

Thursday: Look away, look away no new content to see here. Instead how about looking at our archives?

Friday: Now is the winter of our dis-content.


  • Baturdays is on haitus, because today is October 1st, and that means Killtoberfest is once more underway! Every October, Kyu attempts to watch and review 31 horror movies in 31 days. Now’s a good time to check out the archives of this annual special event: the original Killtoberfest; Killtoberfest 2: Kill Me Twice, Shame On Me; and last year’s Killtoberfest 3: Third Time’s the Harm. This year should be better than ever! In honor of the imminent American Presidential election, welcome to Killtoberfest 4: Four Gores and Severed Ears Ago.
  • David makes a surprise return with TV Roulette as the fall television season heads into full swing. This time he will take a look at new Fox show Lethal Weapon, and he already worries he is too old for this shit.

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.

Keskel: This week I recommend Girls und Panzer. It is the platonic ideal of “cute girls do x” anime, where x is “Have mock tank battles as a high school sport.” In the same way that Pump Up the Volume fully understands and epitomizes the traits of the “teenagers rebel against authority” movie, Girls und Panzer explains why “cute girls doing cute things” and “moe” are genres worth your time. Also, once you’ve seen this show, you can enjoy this amazing AMV.

Kyu: This week I’m recommending the indie teen drama Mean Creek. A quiet, precise film about a group of teens whose prank on a bully goes awry, it’s a tough, almost painful movie to watch. It’s just so naturalistic, true to the way kids act, to the way bullying trickles down from older to younger people, to the way boys are with one another, to the way small decisions can coalesce into tragedy. Emotionally and morally complex, the film takes you on a journey as twisted and upsetting as the one the characters take down the titular creek, which is a space as symbolic as it is literal. Photographed in washed-out colors and gently observant detail, it’s the wild, dangerous place where people go when they leave the constraints and protections of human society behind. It’s hard to call Mean Creek a fun experience; but for the writing, the assured direction, the strong performances from a talented young cast, and the impact of the story, it’s an experience worth having.

That’s it for this week. In our new promotion, visitors will be given one free bottle of Disinfectant™ each! (First come, first served, as supplies last.) On an entirely unrelated note, several cases of illness caused by the mutated gut pathogen colloquially known as “the skinmelter” have occurred outside the Containment Area.