Hollywood RIP

by EDWARD CLINE January 9, 2018
This column is not about Islam per se, but it is about the growing decrepitude of Hollywood fare.  In a sense, it is about the secular version of Sharia, to conform to the nihilism of the Hollywood left. As Sharia’s purpose is to obliterate all personal values and make them Allah’s, the Hollywood left is busy obliterating them in its own manner. The decrepitude is part and parcel of current trends in the culture. 
But, what is Sharia?
Total and unqualified submission to the will of Allah (God) is the fundamental tenet of Islam: Islamic law is therefore the expression of Allah’s command for Muslim society and, in application, constitutes a system of duties that are incumbent upon a Muslim by virtue of his religious belief….
The second major distinction between the Sharīa and Western legal systems is the result of the Islamic concept of law as the expression of the divine will. With the death of the Prophet Muhammad in 632, communication of the divine will to human beings ceased so that the terms of the divine revelation were henceforth fixed and immutable.
In short, Mohammad died, and all divine revelations ceased. His will ceased to be a power.  Men would  obey his will and utterances without question. This is, on the face of it, pure hokum. If he’s dead, he has no power over anyone’s actions or beliefs – except in those who want to believe in a ghost in the sky and could not live without believing there is a ghost.
The purpose of the Left’s brand of Sharia is to persuade one to conform to or compel one to surrender  one’s  personal values, and reason for living – for the state. For the “divine will” of the new elites, the SJWs, who will denigrate every value you might have to ensure that you have no values but their own.
My correspondent has plenty to say about what’s happening in popular culture. In this instance, she discusses the decline and ruination of The Walking Dead  (TWD), in which several of the key characters, who were heroes and objects of viewer adulation, have been diminished, changed over for the worse, or given nothing significant to do.  Sharia, Hollywood style, is being subtly introduced into the characters’ actions and motives. Fans may not notice it, but they will be fed Koranic “wisdom.” “Don’t be angry with your nemesis; be tolerant and make friends." The main event, several seasons into the future, will be Rick, quoting the Koran, and forgiving Negan, one of the most villainous and evil characters in cinematic history, for all the deaths he has consciously caused by his own hand, especially the deaths of some of Rick’s most valued friends, with a baseball bat.
I am not a Creature Feature or Zombie fan by any means, but years ago the original episodes appeared on Netflix and I tried them. I was surprised by becoming interested in some of the main characters, their development, and their struggles, and continued watching the series until recently. it had become less and less interesting as time went on, but when it introduced Muslim characters, I quit the series. It was when the first Muslim character quoted the Koran: “May my mercy prevail over my wrath.” I was certain that, because the character of Rick, a main character, was growing more and more mushier, unpredictable, and ambiguous (in a word, unstable), he would eventually adopt the Koran quotation as his rule of life. (The closest I can find to this quotation, which may have been altered by the series writers, is  “As to punishment, I inflict it on anyone I will, but My mercy embraces everything. “ (203-204)
Lots of good analysis here (though I'm wary of anyone who likes Negan and thinks Siddiq [one of two Muslim characters] has "potential"), on specifics of how TWD is being ruined. I've thought about the more basic issues a lot, with TWD, and the series I'm upset over, and the new Star Wars movie which I don't personally care about but has that fan base so upset. I see in common the destruction of heroic characters fans love, a message that we are going to ram our Social Justice Warriors and Muslims and white-Western-male-hating identity politics and gender-bending and militant feminism down your throats whether you like it or not, and we are going to so muddle and destroy the characters you do care about, the ones who have struggled to achieve heroic status, who are unshakable in confronting and destroying -- not "showing mercy" to – evil.
You will have no one left to genuinely admire. By chaotic muddling of behavior as in the recent TWD episodes they destroy coherence of plot and characterization. In "my" series a major character's heroic actions were trashed, in TWD we're seeing uncharacteristic behavior from Maggie, Daryl, Carl, Rick, Carol [in TWD] and others in dark, poorly filmed scenes, and apparently the SW universe has descended into total Social Justice Warrior chaos. Instances of producers betraying competent (and expensive) actors as in Chandler Rigg's case have also turned up in all 3 series. (Mark Hamill of SW has been openly denouncing this.) 
Scott Gimple, “Showrunner” of The Walking Dead, has run the hit series to the ground, veering  it in a direction that makes little or no sense to just about everyone. The series fan base is not very happy with it, some of it articulating their objections, some of them not but still expressing some valid reservations.

It isn’t just Robert Mueller in pursuit of a Russian mirage and the Pussy Hat brigade not marching in support of the women of Iran that have diverted news coverage from what’s important to focus on. It isn't just Al Gore claiming that the freezing temperatures are evidence of global warming. It’s the popular culture, as my correspondent has explained, that has been appropriated by the Social Justice Warriors. The SJWs, who are determined to “transform” the culture into a closet of ironing boards. They work hard to deny anyone heroes, except for themselves, who have decided that they are the real “heroes,” out to save the world from Donald Trump, Confederate statues, and male ”whiteness.” Netflix has contributed to this trend.
For your boredom, Netflix has dozens of films which may or may not have appeared on TV or in a theater, but which were eventually relegated to Netflix status. “Bright,  is a redo of “Alien Nation” from the 1990s. Zoo,” is a remake of “Day of the Animals” from 1977. Like “Alien Nation,” “Bright” is a lesson in racial and cultural diversity. The cast, headed by Will Smith, has as a police partner an alien in Los Angeles who has a skin condition aggravated, it seems, by being bitten by a thousand rats. In “Zoo,” the story is no longer a vanishing ozone layer that drives animals crazy. The main cast the redo pursues the cause of animals, wild or domesticated, acquiring intelligence and making war on man. The cast flies all over the world looking for the cause, investigating bats, spiders, lions, dogs, cats, rhinos, and elephants in Patagonia. The outbreak turns into a global epidemic. Animals attack and kill thousands of people. It is caused by something in commercial animal food made by an evil corporation. I watched enough of it to detect where it was going. Then, humans bitten by the predators begin to turn into monsters. When a sloth was able to communicate with spiders, and cause a 20-story building to collapse, I gave up. All Hollywood can do any more is take the forgettable films of the past and re-package them to be “relevant” and inevitably forgettable.  The result is unrelieved boredom.
 It isn’t Netflix’s fault that there is so little to offer. It just packages whatever is produced or which fails to grab the headlines and tries to sell it. It’s Hollywood in the tight grip of the Left, in the crusading smash-and-grab nihilism of the SJWs.  We're going to turn your heroes, they say, into ambiguous ones whose motives are doubtful; we will make you reject the outmoded and racist notion that there are such things as good and bad, life-affirming or evil, heroes and villains.
England used to be merry. But now it’s Muslim. Islam frowns on laughter, except when raping an infidel woman or child, or burying a knife into a kafir. Only Allah may laugh, but Muslims will never know it, because, like all mythological ghosts in the sky, he never shows himself. He’s a wallflower.  That’s an Islamic rule. Laughing infidels deserve to be made to suffer or be killed. Kill them as they dip into their cherry cobbler.
Fortunately, one has options. YouTube, Amazon, and other venues exist in which  one can renew one’s emotional need to see the heroic, to renew one’s emotional fuel to fight for one’s values. That us what Rand called it: emotional fuel.
A sense of life is a pre-conceptual equivalent of metaphysics, an emotional, subconsciously integrated appraisal of man and of existence. ... Art gives him that fuel; the pleasure of contemplating the objectified reality of one's own sense of life is the pleasure of feeling what it would be like to live in one's ideal world.
Values (and value-judgments) are the source of emotions; a great deal of emotional intensity was projected in the work of the Romanticists and in the reactions of their audiences, as well as a great deal of color, .... Romantic art is the fuel and the spark plug of a man's soul; its task is to set a soul on fire and never let it go out.
In our time, we must take what is there in the form of marginal or twisted values. Hollywood and the publishing industry stopped producing values decades ago, except in rare instances (e.g., Gladiator). And then there are real life heroes and heroines, such as the women protestors in Iran, one of whom burned the Koran and wrote that Islam was imposed on her country by Arabs.

Edward Cline is the author of the Sparrowhawk novels set in England and Virginia in the pre-Revolutionary period, of several detective and suspense novels, and three collections of his commentaries and columns, all available on Amazon Books. His essays, book reviews, and other articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, the Journal of Information Ethics and other publications. He is a frequent contributor to Rule of Reason, Family Security Matters, Capitalism Magazine and other Web publications.     

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