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I still love ScarJo, even if I'm not supposed to

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Most geeks cannot imagine hating Scarlett Johansson. To most geeks, the concept is absurd, unthinkable -- like making a Star Wars movie without CGI.

But geeks are quirky, contrary creatures. They love hating things that everybody else loves, and there is no hatred quite like the hatred of a film geek. To back up this assertion, I direct you to a brilliant piece of digital brutality written by Alex Carnevale.

At first, I was so bewildered by Mr. Carnevale's post, I misreported his gender in my first draft, assuming that any writer who hated Ms. Johansson (or "ScarJo") had to be female.

Hating Ms. Johansson is like hating sunshine or rainbows or ponies. But Mr. Carnevale comes out swinging, calling the engagement of Mr. Johansson and Ryan Reynolds a "walking thesis against the existence of white people."

He then stumbles into the most brilliant political thesis I've read this year, identifying what I'll call "The Blonde Vote" -- the army of cute blond girls who are going to walk up and tell you to vote for Barack Obama this year.

"These young people will not necessarily have been interested in politics before," Mr. Carnevale says, "but they will be utterly convinced of one thing: Barack Obama is the man to lead our country."

Whatever you think of Mr. Obama, do not underestimate the power of blondes. That might be the source of all this ScarJo outrage -- a grass-roots rebellion against blonde power.

Two years ago, I wrote a negative review of the movie Lost in Translation and was called "crude and reactionary."

Everybody I knew described this as a great movie, but I just didn't get it -- Bill Murray and ScarJo bumming around a Japanese hotel for two hours -- a world full of smug, disaffected yuppies, sneering at everything and whining about loveless marriage.

The backlash was so bad, I bought a DVD and watched it 12 times, convinced that this was a great movie that I just wasn't smart enough to understand.

By the end of the weekend, I was so confused I couldn't tell the difference between love and hate anymore. I was rescued by Cynthia Rockwell, who taught me the real truth about film geeks. First, if your review is smart enough, you're allowed to love things and hate them at the same time. Second, being a geek means never having to say you're sorry.

Ms. Rockwell has her own reasons for hating Ms. Johansson, and the characters she represents: " 'I'm a rich, bored princess who doesn't have anyone treating me like a magical enigma anymore. I'm so sad.' ... Magic and mystery can't be sustained in a human being, and the stereotype keeps men wanting the ephemeral, the thing that does not exist."

Making celebrities look good is a billion-dollar industry. Entertainment blogs are a rebellion against that. They want you to see every scar, every wrinkle, every pimple on the nose of celebrity culture.

It's human nature to hate what corporations tell us to love. Excuse me, I need to watch Lost in Translation again.

The page stops but the blog goes on. Talk back to Michael at www.michaelduff.net.


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