Aqua Teen Movie Not Very Good

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Yes, yes, you’re saying, “in other news: Pope Catholic.” I’m sure the Mother Jones editors are like “what kind of dimwitted yokel is this so-called Party Ben, sullying our esteemed web site with blather about the latest stoner cartoon.” Indeed. But in my defense, “Aqua Teen Hunger Force,” the show, was at one point the funniest, oddest thing on television, belying its rep as “TV for slackers” with rapid-fire dialog that rewarded repeat viewings. Like “Monty Python,” the best episodes built a bizarro world of utter nonsense, but then respected this world’s inner logic, and pushed the rules to their logical, insane conclusions. The strange format of 12- or 13-minute episodes made the action dense and rollicking, like a great comic short story.

We all knew the movie was a crazy idea, but I secretly had high hopes: like the long-rumored “Sprockets” project, it seemed almost zen-like in its willingness to take a concept so completely ridiculous and barely even there, and stretch it out to fit the length of a feature film. If it worked, it would be the greatest thing ever, really. But this kind of trick is a real high-wire act, and the producers seemed to just give up. The film opens with a brilliant song urging good movie-going behavior that should be shown before every feature (“why did you bring your baby to this film / take it out and leave it in the street!”), but then it’s downhill from there, with long stretches of filler and little of the transcendently silly dialog from the best episodes. I probably spent a majority of the movie feeling a bit depressed and embarrassed. Plus, worst of all, they didn’t include the frat aliens (from a mid-Season Two episode when the show was at its creative peak), whose boozy, weirdly homoerotic actions are made all the more hilarious because, well, they’re aliens. Watch that episode here. And Mother Jones, I promise I’m not stoned! I just like surreal comedy. Hopefully Adult Swim can have mercy, put Aqua Teen to rest, and come up with something else just as brilliant.

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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