Home > Hilarity, Internet, Literature, Navel-Gazing, Television > @Sidslang’s Best of Twitter #2

@Sidslang’s Best of Twitter #2

And so follows the second edition of my Twitter recommendations on a sleepy Tuesday evening. Post #1 on the subject is here, my own Twitter feed can be tracked here, and my latest suggestions are:

@TNG_S8

Much of the first decade and a half of internet mass geek culture was – and still is, in certain quarters – dominated by the Star Wars generation, who unleashed an online flood of Flash videos, fan sites and caustic responses to the Lucas of George’s prequel trilogy. Now that the kids who grew up on the original trilogy have begun to go to middle-aged seed and the subculture has been thoroughly mainstreamed by Hollywood-approved Star Wars nerds like Seth McFarlane and JJ Abrams (to say nothing of Lucas’ own avaricious artistic perfidy), perhaps the way is paved for a younger cadre of geeks to elevate their childhood sci-fi obsessions to viral status. My vote for the inheritors of this dubious mantle are Star Trek fans, emblodened by the tangential success of the aforementioned Abrams’ film reboot of the series to champion a mostly discarded television relic of the late 1980s and early 1990s: Star Trek: The Next Generation.

The referential insider humour of @TNG_S8 represents this potential movement at its purest. The name of the Twitter feed itself is an inside joke: there were only seven seasons of Next Generation, and this feed purports to offer brief episode synopses of “lost” episodes of a continued series. Fans of the show will easily catch the lampooning of the predictable turns of the plot in these summaries. Odd phenomena threaten the Enterprise, characters are easily trapped everywhere, and literary pretentions abound. The show’s characters are reduced to stereotypes that fit pretty snugly, really. Klingon Lieutenant Worf is forever truculent and violent, while Captain Kirk proxy Commander Riker gets in fights and romances the space ladies.

The real stars of @TNG_S8 are Lieutenant Commanders Geordi LaForge and Data, however, whose friendship of scientific curiosity and ingenious problem-solving from the show becomes rich fodder for parodic exagerration. Geordi and Data are reduced amusingly to questing adolescent mischief-makers with an endless litany of schemes and pursuits: they have staring contests and holodeck snowball fights, build pillow forts and hunt mice, and dare each other to lick the warp core. They are, essentially, the Goonies on a starship. Will non-TNG types get any of it? Probably not. But on the inside, it’s wonderful stuff.

Representative Tweet:

@HalfPintIngalls

Confession: I have never read the famous Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I do, however, cohabitate with a young lady who grew up with Wilder’s kid-lit chronicles of her hardscrabble plains upbringing, and her appreciation of @HalfPintIngalls is thus surely greater than mine as a result. Still, I can appreciate ironic humour in any guise, and there are ample helpings of that on this feed.

Most of the laughs that @HalfPintIngalls offers are earned through the contrast between the vanished life of rough simplicity and plentiful hardship of Wilder’s fiction with our current cultural norm of instant gratification and superficial wish-fulfillment (her “Pioneer beauty tips” include “Avoid dysentry”, and her contribution to the #SexiestManAlive trending topic was Rutherford B. Hayes). But @HalfPintIngalls is at its best when it applies our post-modern psychological conceptions of alienation to a historical milieu which was too engulfed by the menial desperation of daily survival to offer such existential predilections any oxygen. We chuckle at how far we’ve come, and wonder if we’ve arrived anywhere at all.

Representative Tweet:

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  1. H
    April 10, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    I LOVE THESE TOO. I hope your young lady has read The Wilder Life because it’s AWESOME.

  1. October 23, 2012 at 7:46 pm
  2. February 23, 2013 at 6:48 am
  3. July 14, 2013 at 8:13 am

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