Lying in bed, trying to stave off the virus that has decimated my work ( 4 of 7 of us work today). Thinking
We went to see Monty Python mostly live in the cinema a month or so ago. This is the filmed version of their last night of their live shows in London. We went gold class ( the comfy seats and nice food cinema option) and took my Mum and stepdad. They enjoyed themselves, G enjoyed himself. Me, well I was a bit nonplussed. The jokes were kind of funny, but not hugely so. It felt dated, and overly self indulgent.
But, I am the wrong age, and of the wrong generation in a lot of ways (My husband will read this, and look up indignantly). I have grown up in a world influenced by their humour. This makes it less strong than it was. I can remember reading Douglas Adams ( Salmon of doubt) where he talks about looking forward to each new episode, how they were astounding to his schoolboy self. Of course he was influenced. I remember reading Hitchhikers in high school, and being blown away. So the humour of the pythons is diluted, because I have experienced the result of it. Their groundbreaking humour is not ground breaking for me, that ground is already broken. There are moments of hilarity, but only moments ( they totally stuffed up the dead parrot sketch, the one that would reliably make me crack up).
In the same way, the Beatles are not amaaaaaazing music to me. They are something that has been around my whole life, something that has affected the music I listen to, but has not come with earth shattering impact.
I am trying to think of the things that I can point to that have had that “wow” moment in my life. I think this is why Star Wars looms so big, for so many, it was a film that rewrote how people looked at movies. And this explains the disappointment at the sequels, which is largely limited to adults, who did experience the first films that way. Kids who had grown up with the trilogy always complete, who had always known who Darth Vader really was, were not as disappointed.
Maybe there is the back to the future movies, terry Pratchett ( also influenced by MP), and computers/Internet/video games. I really think it is that last one. I can remember the excitement of our first Nintendo system ( also our last) and the games. I few years ago I bought super Mario brothers for my game of advance( in Japan, on the anniversary of the famicon they rereleased the iconic games). I played it a bit, and then stopped playing on my handhelds for a while. One Christmas I let my niece (g’s side) play it. She was eight, and did not know how to play a platform scroller. Games were very different for her. I feel like Michael j fox, in the 80s cafe. That scene actually captured something more than it seemed to at the time….
So, while I don’t find Python ground breaking, I don’t see the Beatles as the bestest musical thing ever, I think the internet provided that groundbreaking thing for a lot of us. Just quietly. I could not have imagined blogging like this a decade ago ( even though blogging was around). I could not have imagined anything like this 20 years ago, when I was debating how to properly credit a transcript of an interview sourced on the web. And the kids today just see it as something that exists. It’s not amazing that the Internet gives you details of obscure movies, or fanfiction, or that you can find your (non computer geek) tribe on the net. I include that last caveat, because I was aware that more of savvy people than me were using the net to find each other back then.
What nostalgia things do you think younger generations are going to go “meh” at? The Simpsons? I remember that starting too. Oregon trail? I played SimEarth, before there was Sim City or the Sims.