Reading Nemo III: Fearful Symmetry

Nemo_eggs “Do you…?”


“Do you still want to talk about Finding Nemo?”

“I…aren’t you working?”

“I need a break from this essay.  Please.  I’m begging you.”

“I’ll give you five minutes.  What were we talking about?”

“The ending.”

“Yeah.  What happens in the last scene?”

“Not much.  Nemo hugs his dad and goes to school.  But the scene before it has some really cool bookending.”


“Yeah, like, symmetry.  What happens at the end reminds you of the beginning.”

“Like how Forrest Gump begins and ends with that floating feather?”

 forrest_feather_1 forrestfeather2

Mmmm, hear that piano.


“Yeah, or how the beginning and ending scenes of O Brother Where Art Thou are both in black and white.”

“Never saw it.”

“You need to.”

“Sigh.  What happens in Nemo?”

“They rescue Dory and the tuna.”

“Right.  Just keep swimming…” nemo_net_dory



“But how is that bookending?”

“Because the tuna aren’t really individual characters.  They’re a faceless mob.”




“When’s the last time we saw a tight-packed crowd with its life in danger?”



“The eggs?  Why is that significant?”

“Because the movie’s all about trust. The last time Marlin trusted anything, he lost everything.”

“Everything but Nemo.”

“Right.  And since then, he’s been super-protective.”

“Can’t blame him.”

“But Dory taught him the necessity of trust and riskthrough their journeys together.”

“So, now…?”

“Now, Marlin has a choice: he can let the tuna die, or risk his only son.”

marlin nemo net

“I am not gonna lose you again!”


“So he trusts Nemo, and Nemo saves the tuna.”

“Giving narrative balance to the death of the eggs from the beginning.”

“Wait a second.”


“First, trust kills.  Then, it saves.”

“Sort of.”

“So, what’s the point?”

“The point of what?”

“Why did Marlin have to learn trust? Could this lesson have saved his family?”


“So what’s the point of this movie?!  To teach kids that life is nasty, brutish, and short?!”



“Life is nasty, brutish, and filled with sharks, if you’re a clownfish.”


“Sort-of-not-really.  Marlin never learns why bad things happen; he only learns how to live in light of them.  Loving, growing, being brave.  It’s part of the deal.”


“There’s a lot of theology here, actually.  The Bible says a lot more about what to do when we suffer than on why we suffer.  Seeking Him in all things, and all that.”

“Aaaaand…seven minutes.  Are you going to write your essay now?”

“No.  Let’s do dinner.  What’s in the caf tonight?”

“Tuna salad.”

“…dang it.  Chick-fil-A?”


nemo hug

 This image encapsulates my goals as a blogger.


Note: This (in all likelihood) concludes my highly informal analysis of Nemo.  If you like stuff like this, one source I really recommend  is TV Tropes.  I use this site all the time to double-check if my terms.  It’s goofy, addictive, and even has stuff on the Smurfs.  Enjoy.  



Reading Nemo II: Sharks and Shakespeare

Crazy Scotty“So….”
Finding Nemo.”
“It’s a great movie.”
“I thought you wrote about it already.”
“There’s more to say. I’m thinking about writing a tetralogy.”
“A what-now?”
“A four-part series. Like Shakespeare’s King Henry plays.”
“Don’t do that.”
“So what do I do?”
“Sigh. Okay, what do you want to write about?”
“Did you just say the word ‘sigh’?”
“Tell me about your stupid fish. I have to get to class soon.”
“Well, we talked about the theme of trust already.”
“Marlin thinks that being controlling and overprotective will preserve what he has, but it actually drives his son to rebellion.”

He touched the butt.

He touched the butt.

“Heh, yeah. The butt scene.”

But then there’s the theme of baptism.”

“Yeah. See, in fiction, when a character gets submerged and comes back up, it’s usually symbolic of them starting a new life.”

lit book

Again, I blame this book.

“But it’s a fish movie. They’re all underwater.”

“Right, so the whole thing’s inverted. When Nemo’s taken from the water, his life begins anew in the orthodontist’s office.”

Honey, your dad's still probably at the pet store.

Honey, your dad’s still probably at the pet store.

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Reading Nemo

Crazy Scotty“I watched Finding Nemo the other day.”



nemo movie“About time.  That thing’s been out for awhile.”

“No, I’d seen it before.  But this time I analyzed it.”
“Not this crap again.”
“Hear me out.  Why does Marlin love Nemo?”
“Don’t you have a paper to write?”
Why does Marlin love Nemo?
“…because he’s his son.  You heartless monster.”
“Yes.  That.  But also because Nemo symbolizes the past.”

I’ll never let anything happen to you…because you’re symbolic of the life I once had, and all that.

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The Devil’s in the Details

Crazy ScottyI’ve been watching Marvel’s Daredevil on Netflix. I like it, despite the fact that it has some pretty bloody scenes in it. Actually, it has some really bloody scenes in it. In fact, if you know me, and you see me suddenly jump back from my laptop, squeal, and avert my eyes, it’s probably because I’m watching Daredevil.

And as you may or may not have seen from my filler post earlier, I like applying literary criticism to the stuff I watch. I blame my fantastic American Lit professor…and this book:

lit bookIncludes a chapter entitled “Everything’s About Sex” followed by the chapter “…Except When it’s Sex”.

We had to read it for American Literature I.  If you want an accessible, cleverly-written way to gain a better appreciation of books, movies, and just narrative in general, I recommend this read.

Before we can analyze Daredevil, however, I should give you a brief synopsis of the show: Matt Murdock is a blind, small-time lawyer in the New York slums of Hell’s Kitchen. As a boy, Matt was hit by a truck carrying hazardous materials.  Though he recovered from the impact, the toxic waste blinded Matt  But toxic waste did what it does in comic-book-land, and now all of Matt’s other senses are supernaturally heightened.  Plus he has a new “radar” sense which lets him know the proximity of nearby objects.  When not lawyer-ing, Matt uses these abilities to fight crime in Hell’s Kitchen as the vigilante Daredevil.


Dare-DEVIL?  HELL’S Kitchen?  Yes, you noticed, and you’re very clever.

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Reading Netflix

Crazy Scotty“So I’ve been watching Daredevil lately.”
“Yeah, and like, because of all my English classes I’m always looking for symbolism everywhere…”
“That sucks.”
“I mean, you can’t just enjoy it.”
“Well, it’s actually enhanced my enjoyment.”
“I’ve noticed different stuff. Like the fact that Matt can’t see, but he has a clearer sense of justice than his best friend…whose name is Foggy.”


“Huh. Okay.
“And like, why is Matt Murdock a lawyer? Because justice is blind!”

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Masquerades and Mask Parades

Crazy ScottyA few weeks ago, I started my fourth semester at Cairn University.  It’s a great school, and I’ve loved my time here so far.  But I’ve enjoyed it particularly since becoming an English major.

Why have I chosen to study English?  Because I like the smell of books?  Yeah, that’s part of it.  Because I’m afraid of the real world?  Mostly, but it’s also because I get to write.  About things I **like.**

What follows is an essay, a criticism I wrote on the cultural atmosphere of the Wizard World Comic Convention.  If those last four words excited you, prepare to be amazed, and perhaps seduced into pursuing a degree in English.  If they didn’t, well, you can feel free to read ahead anyway.  I tried to make the essay approachable.  Just remember, people: I got to do this for class.  My life’s pretty great.


The picture on the left is of my fellow-cosplaying friends: Eric, Ryan, Aaron, and Jerome.  The picture on the right is of me and…a girl with purple hair.  I don’t know who that is.

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Scotty: 1, Facebook: 0

Crazy ScottyFacebook: Here, look at all your friends on me.
Me: (looks) Oh, hey, there they are.
Facebook: Seems they’re all getting engaged, married, or pregnant.
Me: Huh. Yeah, I guess a lot of them…
Facebook: (whispers) Love will always elude you.
Me: Wait, what?
Facebook: Nothing.
Me: Okay. A– You don’t know that, and B– I shouldn’t be looking to romance as some magic elixir which will solve all my…
Facebook: Alone.
Me: Yeah, but I’m not, though. I have a lot of people in my life who genuinely care about me, and want to see me do well. I have a God who loves me, despite knowing more crap about me than all of my friends combined. And you? You’re a non-corporeal web service.
Facebook: True. (sigh) You gotta admit, though, I’m a pretty conduit for your deepest fears.
Me: Not today. (signs out of Facebook)

Scotty: 1 Facebook: 0


Handshakes and Shalom

Crazy ScottyLast spring I went to Israel, and committed a cultural faux pas before even getting off the plane.

I was on the plane to Israel with my college cohort. Now, you have to understand that this was not just a run-of-the-mill trip to Israel, if such a thing exists. This was the trip, the culmination and consummation of our college education. We had spent the last semester and a half studying Israel’s geography, geology, archaeology, people groups, cultures, and languages. This trip was the payoff.

Before the payoff, however, came an eleven-hour flight, the majority of which I spent searching through the available in-flight movies, trying to find the film that would properly prepare my heart for Israel.

Batman Begins? Nah…
Ooh, Thor 2! Continue reading


Salem and Sinatra

Crazy ScottyIt is a little-known fact that when Arthur Miller wrote the 1996 screenplay for his play The Crucible, a fictionalized account of the Salem witch trials, he wrote an all-new scene which allowed for a brief cameo of one of his favorite performers. Thankfully, for film buffs everywhere, 20th Century Fox has just released the original shooting script for the 1996 film, and has allowed my humble little blog to bear its debut to the world. Prepare your eyes.crucible

ACT II, Scene 2.
The vestry room of the Meeting House where an examination is going on as curtain rises.

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Cairns and Castles

Crazy ScottyIt’s been rough coming home from school.

My freshman year of college at Cairn University has been filled with crazy stories and beautiful memories.  My faith has deepened, my perspective of the world widened, and life as a whole doesn’t seem as bleak as it once did.  I owe a lot of that growth to the college community.  Having a roommate who suffered my rants, professors who heard my questions, and the kind of R.A. from which legends are made was all just part of the beautiful mosaic.100


I’d like to think we’re in our right minds-ish.

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