So I’ve just finished my programs in the Netherlands and head to London in an hour. The last time I was there was a perfect demonstration of the lack and limitation programming you get from pop culture.
We took the tube into Piccadilly for dinner and then went over to the west end to catch a show. We wanted to see “We Will Rock You,” the play based on Queen and Freddie Mercury, but it and a lot of other shows were dark on Sunday. So we ended up going to see “Bombay Dreams,” which was the current production from the factory known as Andrew Lloyd Weber.
It was the perfect demonstration of the lessons we’ve been discussing of late. This play proved that Bollywood is just as clichéd and predictable as Hollywood – and just as infected with mind viruses.
The basic plot: Kind-hearted good people living in the slums of Bombay are driven out and assaulted by the greedy, rich developers. Lawyer, movie producer and others sell their soul for money. Slum boy gets discovered and becomes a movie star. The money changes him, and he forgets all about his former friends in the slums. (Just to complete the cliché, he is being interviewed on TV, and pretends not to know his old friends who are calling his name from behind the velvet ropes.)
There are rich movie producers and rich mafia bosses who are all loud, arrogant and obnoxious. The mafia guy demonstrates that he can buy anyone. We’re treated to one of his private parties where we learn that wealthy people are all cocaine addicts, cheat on their wives, etc.
Of course in the end, our hero turns his back on fame and fortune and returns to the slums, walking off into the moonset, holding hands with his love.
Excuse me while I puke...
So what is the last play you saw, novel you read, movie you went to, or TV show you watched? What were the subliminal messages in them? It’s worth some thought.