In my interpretation of The War of the Worlds, the Martians attack hapless planet Earth not because they need water or are merely imperialistic, but in retaliation for us having sent El Brendel to their planet.Armed with the knowledge of the shtick El Brendel will force upon both his Martian and human viewers, when the 1930 science fiction musical comedy Just Imagine asks us to “just imagine,” it seems more of a chilling warning than a hopeful dream. Once you have experienced the comedic stylings of this one time vaudeville sensation, you will have no choice but to stare directly into the muzzle of that Martian heat ray, shrug, and admit that we’re really getting what we deserve. In fact, we’re probably getting off easy. Continue reading…
Posted June 13, 2014
Actor and activist Ruby Dee has died. Dee appeared in many roles in film, television and on stage. She appeared in St. Louis Blues (1958), A Raisin in the Sun (1961), Guiding Light (1967), Peyton Place (1968-9), Buck and the Preacher (1972), Do The Right Thing (1989), Jungle Fever (1991), American Gangster (2007). Josie Pickens remembers Dee at Ebony. At The New Yorker, Hilton Als is “Thinking of Ruby Dee.” The Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, and The New York Times have obituaries. Women In Theater have an extensive interview with Dee about her career, activism and life. And here Dee talks about her experience at the 1963 March On Washington, which she emceed with her husband, Ossie Davis.