Russell Brand May Have Started a Revolution Last Night -
The revolution itself may not be televised, but on last night’s edition of the BBC’s Newsnight, viewers may have witnessed the start of one.
Forget that it’s Russell Brand. I’m just glad that someone who is considered newsworthy is having conversations like this. More like an argument, and definitely a rant.
So first, about not voting. Do I think the democratic process is perfect? No. Do I still vote? Yes. Do I think not voting would have an effect on anything? Not unless a larger population were refusing to vote. It’s an interesting topic to discuss. The People truly are powerful when they harness strength in numbers.
How about a socialist egalitarian system? Ok, what does that even mean? Where everyone is equal and cooperates? Maybe I am totally apathetic but we are only human. We are bad. And sometimes good. I just don’t think a different social structure will change this. I think we should all work on being better people and realizing that we are all in this together and that true happiness is the absence of self and the cultivation of philanthropy.
What about ”Stop pretending. Wake up. Be in reality now.” zen-type stuff. It all sounds good. But in the end it’s just more to feel guilty about. I’m not doing enough, I’m not living in the present, etc. I think this kind of social change happens over time. I hope that we do evolve to be better to ourselves, the earth and each other. I hope that right now, while humans can express and produce things of beauty, we also are very good at destruction, arrogance and ugliness. So, let’s just try to move the evolution process along a little by focusing on positiveness, togetherness and love.
If you haven’t seen Anthony Hopkins’ fan letter to Brian Cranston, aka Walter White, read it. I only wish Tony had elaborated on WHY he thinks Cranston’s performance was the best - ever.
Like Hopkins, I’ve been on a Breaking Bad marathon. Staying up too late watching back to back episodes. I signed up for Netflix just so I could watch to my heart’s desire. When I’m not watching, I think about Walter White.
Here’s why I think Cranston’s acting is superb. I’ve watched Walter change from a man who though is brilliant, has sold himself short. He is a high school chemistry teacher who when he finds out that he has cancer, wakes up. The change happens in his face, his mannerisms and obviously, in what he does. He goes from living his boring life comfortably to having nothing to lose. He begins to act on his gut feeling that he needs to take care of his family when he is gone, at whatever cost.
You can see him struggle with who he was and who he has become. From a mild-mannered, subdued man arises a balls-to-the-wall character who is truly living like there’s no tomorrow. He is reactive, ironclad and brash. He makes mistakes but he doesn’t falter. Maybe for the first time in his life, he has true focus, a bona fide purpose. The new Walter White, though not perfect or even admirable in his struggle, is extraordinary. He is alive. His transformation is simply captivating.
Those who can live like the new Walter White, without being dealt his diagnoses, are an inspiration. From where does that drive come? Or does it simply take a the threat of dying to realize who you really are and your purpose? Watching Walter White’s awakening has me asking these questions.
I’m writing this down because I’ve been compelled to be more like Walter White. A lesser performance by a lesser actor in a poorly written show is par for the course. Breaking Bad is an albatross. A good show will have me wanting more, maybe I’d even think about the show long after it’s over. But this one had me writing, poring over its intricacies, subscribing to more TV just to get my fix. In effect, bringing me slightly closer to my very own White Awakening.
In other words, my purpose is to express myself as an artist, as a writer. I have a voice that needs to be shared. And here I am, having these thoughts burst out me, almost as if I am living like there’s no tomorrow.