" Synchromysticism:
The art of realizing meaningful coincidence in the seemingly mundane with mystical or esoteric significance."

- Jake Kotze

December 29, 2016

2016: The Death of the Pop Cultural Supermen?

This year we had the death of Superman when Superman battled the Batman on cinema screens across the world.
Not long after this movie's release the "Black Superman" passed away also during the year.
Will Smith playing Ali in Michael Mann's movie of the same name
Bowie passed away in the same year as Ali and released his last album
"Johnny Wakelin got the idea of writing a homage to the boxing champion Muhammad Ali who fought on 30 October 1974 in Kinshasa against George Foreman in a matchup known as 
The Rumble in the Jungle, gaining victory in the eighth round. 
The song was Wakelin's "Black Superman (Muhammad Ali)" released in late 1974.
In January 1975 the song reached number seven in the 

UK Singles Chart.
It reached number one in Australia and spent six months in the US Billboard Hot 100 in more than one chart run in 1975, eventually peaking at No. 21 in September of that year.
Muhammad Ali, however, did not approve of the song and shunned it completely.
It is thought that the American success of Wakelin's song inspired DC Comics to publish the 1978 comic 
Superman vs. Muhammad Ali."
A bigger success was "In Zaire" (also about Muhammad Ali) in 1976, which reached the charts in many parts of Europe, with the chorus "And who was the victor in the night? Elijah Muhammad's boy Ali won the fight."
But when I was moving house I found a warranty for a piece of sporting equipment that has been residing under my bed for the last few years, which is a bit like my equivalent to a teddy bear.
It makes me sleep easier at night knowing my Louisville Slugger is under my bed. 
When I saw the warranty for the Louisville Slugger I thought wasn't Muhammad Ali nick-named the Louisville Slugger? 
Louisville Slugger working with licensee to make Muhammad Ali-inspired bat
Turns out he was.
Ali was born in 1942, which reminds me of another "Black Superman"
So in a way, the "Black Superman" was also the "Batman", as well.
It was also weird how "The Greatest" passed away the same year when the greatest losing streak in Major Baseball was ended by the Cubs winning The World Series.   
Being not much into baseball, I didn't realize until I was taking the above photo that my Louisville Slugger was actually a softball bat and not a baseball bat like I always thought it was. 
Also I thought it was synchy that I was reading Alan Moore's, 
'Alan Moore's Writing For COMICS' and saw this passage starting on page (20?-)16 about taking your reader into an alley metaphorically and beating them with a softball bat.
Alan Moore Talks to Stewart Lee – Books Podcast
Luckily I also have a solid iron bar next to my Louisville Slugger to give me more options on game day/night if need be;-)
I think my father would have got a kick out of passing away in the same year as the Supermen.


Cade F.O.N Apollyon said...

I keep a bullet-proof vest under my bed in the event of a stray depleted-uranium bullet from some war zone on the other side of the planet somehow pierces the planet and wanders it's way up from under my bed through the hardened bunker foundation, a bowl full of hand-grenades on my nightstand...which always come in handy in close quarters combat in limited/close proximity spaces, I have a fire-proof - laser proof - radiation shielding - mosquito/flying insect proof netting draped over my the event some fiery, laser-eyed, radioactive flying bloodsucker somehow made it past my concrete reinforced titanium hermetically-sealed vault bedroom door, and I wear a football helmet equipped with a snorkel over my sleep apnea machine in the event of rogue waves...even tho I am nowhere near the ocean. Never can be too safe. Oh...and I wear flip-flop sandals to bed as well, so that I have some degree of awkwardness in the event of midnight global combat going down in my bedroom whilst I sleep. Makes me feel like I'm being a tad more sporting about things. I don't wanna make it TOO easy for me.

I also have some automated bedroom defenses inside and out. But those are secret. That's why I leave the doors unlocked. Can't be TOO untrusting of my fellow humans. :-D

Oh...and a quasi-serious-ish question...
Q: What does "Pop Culture" mean?
Q: What does "Pop" mean?
Q: What does "Culture" mean?
Q: What does "Pop Corn" mean?

I don't expect any answers, nor even a response/reply. for thought.
Your posts make me think, so...yeah.

Brizdaz (Darren) said...

Part 1 of 2 comments -

I still see some chinks in your armour that you might like to get sorted out in that bedroom of yours, I guess we never can be too safe in our battle with the Grim Raper...I mean Grim Reaper;-)
I live in a poor area just outside of Brisbane called Logan City (the butt of many a local comedian's joke) so a softball bat and an iron bar are about the limits to my defense budget, I'm afraid(which is why I sleep with those weapons in the first place, because I'm afraid at night around here;-).
Although I do have a can of hairspray and a lighter nearby the bed in a last ditch effort to save myself while possibly burning down the unit and destroying in the process whatever it was they broke into steal in the first place.
As to answers to your questions, you will notice that most of my blog-post titles end in a question mark...not because I'm really The Riddler, but because I'm posing questions to the readers myself...because most of my reader's are smarter than me anyway and probably already know all of the answers;-)
Pop Culture to me anyway is the "fast food" for thought in the "food for thought" world we live in.
So it's a bit like trying to define "fast food" I guess, hence your "Pop Corn" analogy of "Pop Culture" is a very good example, as I went to one of my favourite Brisbane cinemas the other night to see two very "Popular" movies playing at the moment, the excellent, 'La La Land' and pretty good animated movie,'Sing' (both featuring some George Michael references oddly enough).
I noticed when exiting the cinema huge bags of popping corn stored in one corner ready to be cooked up for profit, as the ticket prices in this cinema chain are the lowest around in Brisbane by far and most of the profit I imagine comes from selling "fast food" to the cinema patrons and "Pop Corn" seems to be the most popular "food" item sold, even though I can't understand people's fascination with eating Pop Corn, because I myself hate it and rarely ever buy it, because it tends to get stuck in the gaps of my teeth and drives me crazy if I ever do eat it.
I usually buy a cup of coffee, a packet of chips, or a choc top, if anything at all.

Part 2 continued in next comment below =

Brizdaz (Darren) said...

Continuation from above comment -

I like the tune "Pop Corn" though and I'm sure that I've written a post somewhere on the blog about this tune and this cinema selling large quantities of Pop Corn before.
So to try and answer your question, "Pop Culture" to me is whatever is popular in the world's cultural mindset at present, or in the past that can be made popular again.
It's a big world, so whatever is popular in Asia may, or may not be popular in Europe and vice versa, but you would be surprised by all of the ripple effects that a popular meme can have even on people who believe that their own personal world is not touched by "Pop Culture".
Take a band like "The Beatles" for instance, whether you like their music, or not, or have never even heard of "The Beatles" before in your life, doesn't mean on some level your life hasn't been infected in some way indirectly by their "Pop Cultural" influence.
Life is one big mash-up when it comes to "Pop Cultural" threads woven throughout one's life and to untangle those threads from your own life would be impossible to do.
I could go on and on down this "Pop Cultural" "Rabbit Hole" but I would never get to the bottom of it and would probably get lost on the way down, like I probably have already;-)
Anyway, my blog isn't really about answering questions, it's more about posing more questions from my own angle of looking at life and letting readers answer their own questions about my sanity and their own view of life, while I laugh at the sanity those readers think that they posses over me.
Like my namesake Schultz(or the surname I would have had if my nana had not have given my father his step-father's surname when she remarried) on that popular TV show of the 60s, 'Hogan's Heroes' used to say a lot, "I know nothink, nothink".
I see a lot that others probably miss in life, but at the end of the day (or Kniht;-) I know that I Know "Nothink" when I "think" about it;-)

Cade F.O.N Apollyon said...

Awesome response. Thanks for taking the time.

You have no idea how much your descriptive description of going to your local movie house for a coupla movies that I was able to see from way the fuck over here in North Texas/near Dallas.

I guess "the living and dying" of living and dying?...when they become more about what is dying, than what was living up to the point where they actually died?...I dunno...something kinda...speaking to us about where our focus is and/or is not.

I too do not seek answers so much, and really don't even like asking questions...except when I do. But those become lies over time eh? ;-)

Thanks for opening up a bit of your world for the rest of us.