Terms Of Service
Quote Of The Day
Terms Of Service
Cite this page
Find James Wolcott on:
James Wolcott Quotes
Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian would have left little more than lipstick stains in their passing had it not been for the sex videos that lofted them into reality-TV notoriety. Once notoriety has warmed into familiarity, celebrity itself becomes one big 'Brady Bunch' reunion, or a therapy session with Dr. Drew.
In the voyeurism of Reality TV, the viewer's passivity is kept intact, pampered and massaged and force-fed Chicken McNuggets of carefully edited snippets that permit him or her to sit in easy judgment and feel superior at watching familiar strangers make fools of themselves. Reality TV looks in only one direction: down.
What had brought me to New York in the autumn of 1972 was a letter of recommendation written by Norman Mailer, the author of 'The Naked and the Dead' and American literature's leading heavyweight contender, to Dan Wolf, the delphic editor of 'The Village Voice.'
Being raised Catholic in a pressure-cooker household besieged by alcohol and bill collectors enforced and heightened a sense of sentry duty in me, the oldest of five children and the one most responsible for keeping everything from capsizing. Wild indulgence was for other people, the non-worriers.
Like Andy Warhol and unlike God Almighty, Larry King does not presume to judge; all celebrities are equal in his eyes, saints and sinners alike sharing the same 'Love Boat' voyage into the dark beyond, a former sitcom star as deserving of pious send-off as Princess Diana.
The days when the words 'Hollywood actor' framed Ronald Reagan like bunny fingers as an ID tag and an implied insult seem far-off and quaint: nearly everybody in politics - candidate, consultant, pundit, and Tea Party crowd extra alike - is an actor now, a shameless ham in a hoked-up reality series that never stops.
Bad acting comes in many bags, various odors. It can be performed by cardboard refugees from an Ed Wood movie, reciting their dialogue off an eye chart, or by hopped-up pros looking to punch a hole through the fourth wall from pure ballistic force of personality, like Joe Pesci in a bad mood. I can respect bad acting that owns its own style.
Republicans: steely, rational, paternalistic, respectful of authority, easy to herd, the party of No. Democrats: sugary, emotional, idealistic, yearning for novelty, hard to marshal, the party of Oh Yeah, Baby, Make Mama Feel Good.
Everyone is entitled to his own nostalgia.
I understand that one of the purposes of bipartisanship is to cram something difficult and necessary down the American people's gullets for which neither party has the fortitude to assume full responsibility. It's a way of turning a possible gangplank into a teeter-totter.
Even the most piddling life is of momentous consequence to its owner.
I never accepted why there should be some invisible, wavy cutoff line separating Great Fiction from phosphorescent beauties and dollhouse miniatures, novels that contain a whole world in a snow globe.
In 2008, Barack Obama did get Democrats hyperventilating, whipped up to a creamy froth, while John McCain creaked ahead like a cranky granddad whom Republicans let move to the front of the buffet line, deferring to seniority, as they had in 1996, when Bob Dole turtled to the top of the ticket.
One reason I'm such a wayward prognosticator of rightwing trends is that I'm incapable of blacking out enough neural sectors to see the world through reptilian-brained eyes, a prerequisite for any true channeling of the mean resentments and implanted fears that drive hardcore conservatives.
The whole ecosystem of celebrity has broken down for writers. If you go back to the '50s, '60s, and '70s, writers were on TV a lot, and they were allowed to misbehave a lot.
Slashing its way to the finish line, 'Black Swan' is the first ballet movie for highbrow horror fans for whom ballet itself signifies little to nothing. Those of us who know and love ballet can only look on it with a different kind of horror.
With 'Black Swan,' the ballerina saga flips its tiara and goes on a hallucinatory bender, a scary acid trip where transfiguration and disfiguration meet.
'Hairspray' was a movie turned Broadway musical turned Hollywood remake, and that is the 'Lion King' circle of life as we know it in Times Square, the creative loop that swings for the stars and sometimes crashes into the upper deck.
High expectations weren't nurtured in my neck of nowhere back then - children weren't fawned over from an early age as 'gifted' and groomed for a prizewinning future; self-esteem was considered something you had to pick from the garden yourself.
The lies the government and media tell are amplifications of the lies we tell ourselves. To stop being conned, stop conning yourself.
Historically, Hollywood comedy has arrived in skinny envelopes. From fence post Buster Keaton to herky-jerky Jerry Lewis to wiry nerve-bundle Woody Allen to hung-loose Richard Pryor to whippy contortionist Jim Carrey, its comics and clowns have tended to be sliced thin and bendable.
It's one thing to fight for what you believe in, another thing to fight for what others believe in.
I try to avoid Politico to spare myself psoriasis of the brain but so many journalists cite it that I'm forced to be aware of it no matter how big a moat I build.
A lost election can have the jolt of a drop through the gallows door, leading to a dark night of the soul in which the future presses down like a cloud that will never lift.
Used to be, conservatives revered the Average American, that Norman Rockwell oil painting of diner food, humble faith, honest toil, and Capraesque virtue.
How can I impress strangers with the gem-like flame of my literary passion if it's a digital slate I'm carrying around, trying not to get it all thumbprinty?
Load more quotes
Quote Of The Day
Top 100 Quotes
BQ on Facebook
BQ on Twitter
BQ on Pinterest
BQ on Google+
BQ on Instagram
Quote Of The Day Feeds
Quote of the Day Email
© 2001 - 2019 BrainyQuote