by DICK CHENEY
Under the Dome
creator Brian K. Vaughan
People are constantly touching one another Under the Dome. Last week, a bearded blonde veteran named Barbie (Mike Vogel) was for some reason walking all alone one night as it was pouring. Even then, an intrepid ginger reporter (Rachel Lefevre) accused of copyright infringement by the Japanese executives who own the rights to the April O'Neal character finds him in the rain. She tells him, "Waah I had a hard day Bahbie" so that he will do the thing where he embraces her then makes a quick transition to putting his tongue in her mouth.
In the morning they are in her bed.
She gives him a variety of looks there, each of which I have broken into discrete parts. (Examining the range of post-coital facial expressions was my thesis at the U of W.)
1. Mild disgust
3. Sunlight in her ginger eyes
4. Total comfort and acceptance
5. Where are you going?
6. You're leaving?
7. Just for water?
8. Starting to have some regrets?
9. Pretty happy to be interrupted by my pregnant neighbor, huh?
10. Will I see you at home?
Meanwhile, men feel a very different set of emotions after sex. They can run the gamut depending on exactly how gentile the man in question is, a 1 being David Paymer and a 10 being Kevin Costner. Here is what I outlined in 1973, and it is no less true today than it was the day I woke up my wife Lynne with breakfast in bed, you know, just because...
1. Where am I and who did this to me?
2. These sheets are redolent of lavender.
3. I wonder if Alex Rodriguez addressed the media.
4. One day we will all need performance enhancing drugs.
5. My penis feels like a tube of toothpaste.
6. When did I romance a ginger newspaperwoman?
7. Jeff Bezos bought the Washington Post. I hope he fires E.J. Dionne first, and meanly.
8. She probably thinks I want to get out of here, because the rest of the Dome is so fun. Instead I'm going to assuage those doubts with my Crest.
9. I wonder if later in the episode we will lie on the couch saying absolutely nothing to each other.
Fortunately romance in Under the Dome is not confined to women and the men who killed their husbands. Norrie (Mackenzie Lintz) and Joe (Colin Ford) went searching for the exact middle of the Dome, and when they got there, they found this year's hatch from Lost. But no, it was like a small dome this time, and underneath it was a black egg. When Norrie touched it, she saw Samantha Mathis in the woods, possibly the most disappointing thing to ever happen when someone touched the Dome, and that includes a fatal heart attack.
The main thing that bothered me about Under the Dome was the ongoing storyline where psychotic ex-boyfriend Junior (Alexander Koch) locked Annie (Britt Robertson) up in his Dad's fallout shelter.
He told Angie that it was because she had changed and the Dome was doing something to her and he wanted to keep her safe, but that entire time I suspected otherwise. Every single episode I watched I was consumed by the desire to know when Angie would free herself from this underground prison until finally Junior's father decided to let her go, assuming everyone would be dead after the U.S. military leveled a missile strike on the Dome. (Everyone survived except for common sense.) When Angie finally made it home last night, her brother did not even ask where she was or what she had been doing since the Dome fell.
Under the Dome is kind of like watching a car accident in slow motion. You know it's going to be bad, so you have to know just how bad. It actually shocks me that Stephen King was never involved with Lost in the first place; he is the master of setting up some overblown mystery until it turns out, "That was just an earthquake doing it," or "Something evil made that happen." I believe the antagonist in one of King's recent books was actually a copy of The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon. Children ran away in fear because it was on their summer reading list.
I don't want to make this all about how much Stephen King sucks, but let's face it. The Green Mile was about a magical black man who heals white prison guards by touching them. The Shawshank Redemption was about a magical black man who heals white prison inmates through superior voiceover work. Besides former Boston Red Sox closer Tom Gordon, these are the only black characters in all of Stephen King's work. Don't get me started on The Stand, it's so fucking stupid my head hurts just thinking about it. The distinguishing feature of Stephen King's work is that he never stops to think if an idea is good, he just believes in it because he had it.
Since Under the Dome has been renewed for a second season, it's guaranteed to be dragged out much longer than it should. The show deserves praise for killing off Samantha Mathis, although in an ideal world she would have been vivisected by some kind of alien blade. Instead she died of a heart attack roughly the same time that her daughter touched the small dome and asked the egg to speak to her. Unfortunately since a number of characters/helicopter pilots on Lost have already perished, this just increases the screen time given to the black DJ of Chester's Mill and the Asian radio station operator. I hate token minority characters even more than I hate The Newsroom.
To get your news Under the Dome you have to find the right frequency. In the future, all newspapers will be owned by white billionaires as vanity projects; they won't even have advertising; they will simply be a public service provided by the very rich to the very poor. I can't even imagine what people from low socioeconomic backgrounds think when they read The New York Times.
This could, however, be the saving grace of the media. Instead of having to drive pageviews by offering stupid shit like, "The Top Ten Things He Thinks After Sex", maybe they'll actually do some reporting on, you know, the government or private sector instead of writing long editorials about sports teams and Amanda Bynes. When you wake up Under the Dome, there is no newspaper. When you turn on the radio, all you hear is a DJ playing Nina Simone and Nat King Cole. There is no Jeff Bezos Under the Dome. There is no Tina Brown Under the Dome. There is only the corpse of Ezra Klein and sex without birth control.
Dick Cheney is the senior contributor to This Recording. He is a writer living in an undisclosed location. You can find an archive of his writing on This Recording here. You can find his first Under the Dome review here.
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