So, yeah. It’s the weekend and I don’t have anything much to add for today, but I stumbled onto this little movie on Cracked and I thought it was interesting. Worth a watch.
I still like the movie but it always did seem strange to me that the bad guys, or at least some of them, did seem to be smarter and more civil-liberties-minded than the Fascist-esque government officials as championed by Malloy of the hilariously precious sports car. Only Larkin exists to offer a modern, human take on what it is to be an authority figure, and he ends up reaching a tentative sort of trust with Poe.
Still, seemed weird to me. Why were those particular traits selected to make these convicts “the worst of the worst”, and why was Poe made into the special case?
Of course Larkin’s line at the start of the movie, about looking at a society by examining its prisoners, was intended to drive this point home all along. I had always taken this “quote” as a sign of modern conservative culture letting these people down, though, and turning them into villains. It all gets rather confusing when they use the line to defend Poe’s convict status while at the same time the assorted other cultural tropes are left high and dry as clear bad guys.
And don’t get me wrong, Johnny-23 and Billy Bedlam and Garland Greene are all pretty clear-cut wackos, and Cyrus ‘The Virus’ Grissom is clearly aiming for a Lecter-style blend of madness and charisma. But given the facets of modern Western culture they represent, their gratuitous destruction at the hands of wholesome ex-military good ole boy Poe does start to seem … well, a little gratuitous.
 Except Garland. Bless.
I guess I was always left wondering whether they had been given facets of modern thinking and attitudes in order to make them more relatable and charming, just to make them into characters. And just what it meant for the viewers who did see those attitudes and think “yeah, The Virus really has a point there.”
But the idea that they had been created as anti-conservative tropes for the war hero to systematically destroy on his way back to Freedom and Family and Cherry Pie … yeah, that was interesting.