The Underground — Issue #89
Everything you need to know about in this weekly series: Why all music nowadays sounds identical, a new HBO show that is a guaranteed hit, why you see prescription drug commercials all the time, and a workplace video satire that protects white fragility.
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 that’s our job: 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. That’s The Underground.
1. There’s a reason why all of the songs on the radio sound the same. I’m past the point of listening to new music on the radio. I’m usually 2 years behind when it comes to what’s popular because I just don’t want to invest the time. When I listen to a band, I listen to them for months. Radiohead dropped their new album earlier this year, and I have been listening to their entire discography since. It’s like that. However, when I do have to put myself through the ringer of new music, I usually think it all sounds the same. Turns out I wasn’t wrong.
The video below is pretty jarring. Listening to the radio will never be the same after watching it. If you don’t have at least one audible “Wow” then I don’t know what to tell you. One thing I can be sure of is that if you keep recreating the same sound, you’ll be on the radio.
2. HBO’s Westworld has dropped, and it looks amazing. The last time J.J. Abrams and Jonathan Nolan collaborated on a television show was Person of Interest. That show dealt with artificial intelligence and terrorism. It ran 5 seasons on CBS and…wait, CBS? Yeah, CBS. It ran for 5 season and ended with a satisfying ending for every character. Now, the two come together to adapt a classic film into a surefire hit on HBO.
Premise: A series inspired by the 1973 film of the same title written by Michael Crichton about a futuristic theme park populated by artificial beings.
HBO really needs this show to be a hit. Game of Thrones is the biggest show on the channel, but everything else is doing just OK. All the content they have is great, but they have no real hit shows besides GOT. They are betting big on this bad boy, but how could you not. It has the names of two heavyweights in the industry attached to it. It has the production quality of a big budget movie. It has the cast of a big budget movie.
Watch the trailer for Westworld below. It’s going to be so good.
3. This is how we got stuck having to watch endless drug commercials. In case you haven’t noticed, every commercial break for nearly everything on television is filled with prescription drug ads. The first half is usually some guy jogging or playing with his dog with a voice over about the drug. Then, as he continues to play with dog, the side effects are read where anyone who actually takes it could die or have explosive diarrhea.
I’ve seen reaction videos of people from other countries watch these commercials in bewilderment. It’s begging for conspiracy theorists to speculate that the medical companies want to medicate to American public into submission. I can’t even count how many different ads are playing for different medications. I just remember seeing the Cialis commercials and wonder why they chose two people sitting in separate bathtubs. It’s a medication to increase blood flow to the dong? Why would you take that medication and sit in a different bathtub? And why the hell are the people in the ads clearly under 40? If you need Cialis when you’re young, you don’t need Cialis, you need to be tested for something else.
Anyway, watch this video explaining how this all started, and then you can proceed to tell anyone sitting near you about it when you’re watching TV. Be that person. Be the know-it-all.
4. Newsbroke explains how to protect a white person’s feelings in the workplace. If you’ve ever told jokes on stage, you probably noticed that if you’ve said anything that could be taken as offensive, the person that takes offense is probably a white person. I’m white, so this is pretty weird. You can take any subject imaginable and you can look out and see a white person shaking their head. I once told a joke about my Dad having Cancer.
The joke was basically about how my Dad went into the VA because his foot hurt, was suggested to that he get a colonoscopy, they found Cancer, and because of that he lived. My punchline was “so it looks like his foot saved his ass.” After my 5 minutes, some girl came up to me at the bar and said it pissed her off because she knew someone that had Cancer and died. The first person I told that joke to was my Dad. You know what happened? He laughed. I wasn’t making fun of people with Cancer, I was making fun of Cancer. But still, I offend.
The video below takes the classic workplace teaching video and turns it on its head. It’s brilliant and completely believable. I guarantee these things happen in real office’s all over the United States. Just remember: SILENCE.
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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.