At this point, you’ve all undoubtedly watched the Stop Kony 2012 video that’s spreading around the Internet like pictures of Britney Spear’s vajayjay. If you haven’t, here it is again:
I saw this the other day because a crapload of people on Twitter and Facebook were just sharing the video around as if it was a picture of Brit Brit’s bush. So Invisible Children, mission accomplished. Of course, there are quite a few bits of information floating around the Internet (like this post by a Ugandan journalist) about just how misguided the folks at Invisible Children are, but that’s not what I want to talk about.
I want to talk about the gross double standards of Internet haters out there.
When I watched the Stop Kony video, all I could think about was “wow this is one long-assed wishy-washy video”. At the end of it, I realized I had devoted 30 mins to it – to put that in perspective, I could’ve watched two-thirds of an episode of Bones in that time. In other words, the Stop Kony video was way too fucking long – just like what everyone says about Michael Bay movies.
And what contributed towards this lengthy running time? A bullshit diatribe about connecting people via the Internet. As 99 percent of the people watching this video are watching it off the Internet, I think it’s safe to assume they already know what the Internet is. They only mention anything remotely close to Uganda’s problem four minutes into the video. It’s definitely compelling when he milks the cuteness of his son to contrast innocence with the horrors of Uganda’s slaughter… but he uses it the same way Michael Bay uses explosions.
Then there’s the last 5 minutes, which is a nonstop wankfest of people carpet bombing cities with posters and catch phrases stolen from all the stirring speeches in movies where the US president has to rally his fighter pilots to defeat an invading alien army. “Internet warriors unite!” “Nothing is more powerful than an idea whose time has come.” “If you share this video on Facebook, you will be rewarded with the souls of a thousand virgins in your afterlife.”
Did I forget to mention this particular shot? It makes my eyes roll whenever I look at it… which makes it hard to type this sentence.
Basically, if Jason Russell wanted to, he could’ve easily reduced the running time of this video by a good 10-15 minutes. But he didn’t want to. He wanted a full 30 mins of your time.
Internet haters constantly rain fire and loathing onto Michael Bay movies like Transformers: Dark of the Moon… so why don’t they do the same when another filmmaker commits the same alleged filmmaking crime?
While we’re on the subject of Transformers… Internet haters love to rip into the simplicity of its story. Here are some things I hear about it all the time:
- Megatron is such a one-dimensional bad guy – couldn’t they give him more depth?
- Optimus and Megatron are so black and white – the really real world is made up of shades of gray!
- Optimus killing Megatron isn’t going to solve anything; there are still hundreds of Decepticons out there!
- What about Chicago? The killing of one Decepticon leader and an Autobot traitor is not going to solve the problem of a completely devastated city – what are the now-homeless 2.7 million citizens going to do about education, health, and basic security now?
Don’t get me wrong; these are valid points. But while the Internet haters are so disdainful of simple stories of good versus evil in Michael Bay movies, they are equally eager to jump onto the Stop Kony bandwagon – where all of Uganda’s problems can be solved just by taking down a single person.
Removing Joseph Kony will solve all the child soldier problems (never mind that armies hunting him are making use of the same child soldiers). Removing Kony will miraculously create schools and give those kids an education, a safe place to live, and proper health care. Killing him will create a never-ending rainbow that will fill those kids’ stomachs with love and nourishment.
Actually, Joseph Kony doesn’t even operate in Uganda anymore (he apparently shifted away in Dec 2005) – making the Kony 2012 video just like Duke Nukem Forever in the sense that it’s a few years too late.
But you know what? It doesn’t matter. While Internet haters don’t think a simple one-dimensional dictator like Megatron is realistic, they’re completely okay with the fact that Kony is the devil incarnate, and killing him will create world peace and patch up the Ozone layer.
I don’t care if Internet haters don’t want to do their own research, and I don’t care how cool and politically in tuned they think they look by sharing this video… the only thing that offends me is the gross double standards they have.
If you’re going to crucify Michael Bay and his movies, you also need to shit on Invisible Children for committing the same filmmaking crimes by making such a long-winded and over-simplified video.
Honestly, if Michael Bay made a video about how the Earth is round and revolves around the sun, the Internet haters would lynch him.