The Underground — Issue #16
Everything you need to know about in this weekly series: A mobile app that waits in line for you, a book about the worst movie of all time, low priced gadgets that could save your life, more from one of the biggest sequels of all time, and a genocide that’s mostly unknown by the West and denied by Japan for decades.
At Social Underground we go beyond the mainstream stuff and see what’s underneath the surface. What should we get into, listen to, read, eat or watch? If there is something in our culture that needs attention, dammit, we will bring it to your attention. With The Underground, we mean to do exactly that: Show you the underground things that you need to know about: Books, music, television, movies, comedians, art, and whatever else we can find to get you into something you never knew about.
Don’t you remember the time you heard that first song from your favorite band? You made the decision to jump head first into that first album and then delve deeper into them. Now, you don’t remember a time where you haven’t listened to that band. If you play guitar, you don’t remember the time where you didn’t know how to play. We want to bring you new stuff that you didn’t know you need in your life to the point where you can’t remember not knowing about it. That’s The Underground.
1. Qless is the mobile phone app that waits in line for you. I guess I call myself patiently impatient, meaning that I can appear calm whilst standing in a line, but inside, I’m losing my mind. Qless hopes to alleviate that grueling hell that is waiting in line for hours and notifying you when it’s your turn.
The biggest offenders of lines? The DMV. Just pulling up to the parking lot and seeing it jammed on a Tuesday afternoon could make someone punch their steering wheel… but then you walk in and you’ll expect to wait there for what feels like a year.
Check out what they’re up to in this video below:
Head on over to the Qless website to see this app can go beyond with education, Government, healthcare, and for those Christmas shoppers: RETAIL!
2. The Disaster Artist is a must-read book that details the making of one of the worst films ever made by a human.
The Room was made by an eccentric, creepy, weirdo by the name of Tommy Wiseau. The summary of the movie sounds innocent:
Johnny is a successful banker who lives happily in a San Francisco townhouse with his fiancée, Lisa. One day, inexplicably, she gets bored of him and decides to seduce Johnny’s best friend, Mark. From there, nothing will be the same again.
As you watch the film, each scene is worse than the one before it. You keep thinking that it can’t get any worse, but it does. Greg Sestero, who plays Mark in the film, details the making of the film and how it was bat shit insane the entire time. An excerpt:
“This book is about what might be the world’s most improbable Hollywood success story. At its center is an enigmatic filmmaker who claims, among many other things, to be a vampire. This man speaks with a thick European accent, the derivation of which he won’t identify. He also refuses to reveal his age or the origins of his seemingly vast fortune. His name is Tommy Wiseau; and the film he wrote, directed, produced, starred in, and poured $6 million into is a disastrous specimen of cinematic hubris called The Room.”
There was even one mention in the book where the two were out to dinner, and Tommy ordered a hot cup of water and just left it on the table. Why?!
Before jumping into the book, watch The Room. It’s so immeasurably bad that none of what you just read can prepare you. The good thing about the film is that since it’s so bad, it’s hilarious. I mean, it’s one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. After you see it, read this book. Actually, don’t read it, get the audiobook to hear Sestero do a spot-on impersonation of Tommy. You won’t regret it, and you’ll be begging your friends to experience it so you can talk about it.
Watch a clip. I assure you this is 100% real and meant to be a serious film:
If you noticed his mouth, it’s because he re-dubbed his voice over himself. Oh, notice how the background is a green screen? It’s because it’s filmed in a parking lot, even though the crew had a real rooftop available to shoot scenes on.
Please, go to Amazon.com to get the book. You can also find copies of The Room all over the internet.
3. Resqme is the low-price gadget that can save your life.
Imagine you’re driving along the side of a lake road when a car cuts you off. You break through the barrier and your car goes in. The water is deep and becomes submerged. You attempt to open the door, but the water pressure doesn’t allow you do do so. Thankfully, you purchases a Resqme keychain escape tool that can immediately break the window of the car so you can swim to safety. That keychain is just one of the many products they offer that can save your life.
All of their products cost little in comparison to how much your life costs without them. Check out their web page and get some of their gadgets that could potentially save your friends and loves ones.
4. The action gets intense in the newest TV spot for Avengers: Age of Ultron. Most of the trailers have given us a little bit more, but nothing that we really haven’t seen before… until now. This new spot gives us a peek into even more of the action we can expect to one of the most hyped film sequels since The Dark Knight.
Give this a few views because it looks so good. Avengers: Age of Ultron comes out in theaters everywhere on May 1st.
5. The Rape of Nanking is a documentary that will question the decency of humanity.
During the Sino-Japanese War of World War 2, the Japanese invaded Chinese and unleash some of the most brutal atrocities ever recorded during the 20th century. Starting on December 13, 1937, the Chinese led an invasion of the city of Nanjing and what happened during those 6 weeks are some of the most horrific were some of the most horrific war crimes imaginable.
Some of the atrocities committed include the Contest to kill 100 people using a sword. Japanese newspapers would follow the contest where two men tried to decapitate as many military and non-combatants as they could.
Men were brutally murdered in massacres that included decapitations, being buried alive, or being set on fire. Innocent women were raped and killed in ways that I will not go into here because of the extreme graphic nature.
To further detail on how insane things got, John Rabe, a German businessman and member of the Nazi party, along other Westerners in Nanjing, had to create a safety zone to protect civilians from being raped and killed. One instance, during a Japanese bombing raid, Rabe had to use a gigantic Nazi flag as cover for the thousands of refugees hiding in the safety zone, so that the Japanese bombers wouldn’t attack since the two were allies. Imagine that: A Nazi flag used as a symbol of hope and safety in a city where the most monstrous of things were occurring daily.
The video I posted above is a documentary titled The Rape of Nanking. It features interviews with survivors who were there as well and popular celebrities reading diaries and accounts from survivors and soldiers from both sides.
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Jeff Sorensen is an author, writer and occasional comedian living in Detroit, Michigan. You can look for more of his work on The Huffington Post, UPROXX, BGR and by just looking up his name.