Cartoons, a License for Racism?

It seems cartoons have a lot more politically correct leeway when it comes to racism or using racial stereo types. Mainstay cartoon series such as The Simpson’s, South Park and American Dad seem to be able to get away with racist overtones and comedy that wouldn’t fly on a “human” show. On the extreme there are people who can even, somehow by some stretch of the imagination, find racism in cartoon’s like Arthur or Rugrats.

There are cartoons from several generations ago that had undertones of racism, where as today’s cartoons use racism or stereotypes overtly, in a comedic way, like the blunt in your face comedy of Don Rickles. And today’s cartoons get away with that humor as does Rickles.

A new cartoon series The Adventures of Wong Lo Fan is no exception, in this case more in the realm of reserve racism playing off the stereo types that Chinese have of Westerners. Wong is as common a Chinese last name as Smith, but “Lo Fan” is the derogatory slang term for white people. The character Wong Lo Fan himself, a nerdy blonde haired blue eyed teen, was “raised the child of a poor rice farmer in mainland China.”

DZToons, the creators of The Adventures of Wong Lo Fan, say “it’s all in good fun. Every group of people has stereotypical perceptions of other groups of people, whether it’s based on race, religion, country or other factors. If we get too politically correct, we become too easily offended, and we lose the ability to laugh at ourselves and others. Cartoons have the ability to allow us to still laugh at the politically incorrect.” They continue, “I think Mel Brooks would have a hard time making a movie like Blazing Saddles in this day and age, he would have offended just about everyone in the audience in the first 10 minutes, which is a shame, we should be able to laugh at ourselves and our differences without taking offense.”

DZToons hopes that audiences in both North America and Asia will find something to love and laugh at when the series airs. They’re betting that the support is there and we’ll see just how they fare with the IndieGoGo campaign to get the first season made.

Can Hulk Take on Superman the Man of Steel?

In light of the two wildly successful movies of late, fans of both major comic franchises have been asking each other and warring on forums across the reaches of cyberspace the only pertinent question when two veritable gods dominate the screen: who would win in a fight? We were privy to the Hulk’s awesome power in both the 2003 and the 2008 movies, in which the illimitable wrecking machine decided to smash until he could smash no more. Of course, although the film was successful financially, the reception for the first one was a bit mixed. The 2008 version starring actor Mark Ruffalo as the eponymous antihero was a little more successful financially.

The Man of Steel Has Landed

Predictably, when the Superman reboot came to the fore, starring new actor to the franchise Henry Cavill, it absolutely blew the Hulk away at the box office, tripling the Gamma Monster’s numbers. So the victory is resoundingly in the Man of Steel’s favor on this note; but that still leaves the question of who would take the W in a “real” fight.

Superman’s super-human abilities are the stuff of legends, and he is widely acknowledged as the first and greatest super hero. Known by the mild-mannered alter-ego of Clark Kent, this alien god comes with a treasure trove of powers: heat vision, super-breath, super speed, super-strength, atmospheric and interstellar flight, he’s virtually impervious to physical injury, and ice breath. These don’t even entail the full suite of his powers! Just the most used. Frankly, the Man of Steel has more weapons at his disposal than some super teams; and he is powered by the effectively limitless energy of our yellow star.

Before we move on to the Hulk, let’s not forget that Superman’s powers have been dialed down a bit from the Silver Age uber-god who inhaled entire solar systems and slapped away galaxies. His only rivals back then were celestial entities like Sky-Fathers and multiverse overseers. Hulk has no chance whatsoever against these incarnations of the Man of Steel, of course.

The Incredible Hulk, on the other hand, has some pretty formidable attributes of his own. A creature forged in the heart of a gamma bomb – which is the shortest range of light wavelengths – the unleashed psyche of nuclear scientist Dr. Bruce Banner is a fearsome green rage machine. The Hulk starts out with mega-strength, and it only gets worse from there if you make him angry. He’s been known to hold billion-ton mountains aloft to save his Avengers teammates, and even ripped the supposedly unbreakable metal adamantium during a bout with the X-Man Wolverine. Of course, to accomplish the latter feat, he was as angry as he’d ever been, second only to the battle with the psionic menace Onslaught.

As impressive as Hulk’s feats of strength have been, they take a decided back seat to Kal-El’s unbridled and seemingly limitless power. Superman has moved planets and shrugged off nuclear blasts. Superman vs Hulk would be a good battle because of the difficulty in putting Hulk down – due to his incredible healing factor – but Hulk has simply never quite faced anything like the Man from Krypton. His valor and honor aside, it is very difficult to imagine that Superman doesn’t have the power to actually kill the Hulk – though he’d never do it. With his superspeed, Hulk doesn’t even have a shot at landing a punch, and Superman’s invulnerability should be able to withstand it even if he did get hit.

Despite all the powers they have going for them, Hulk vs Superman probably really just comes down to who you like the most – who was your favorite childhood super hero. The real treat would be finally seeing how the comic book writers themselves would let a true battle play out – perhaps such a treat is in the works for the future.

The Curious Case of ‘Motivation’

In this age of cutthroat competitions, the word Motivation has become the most adored word of our ‘highly motivated’ and ‘motivation oriented’ bosses. Figuratively, they eat motivation everyday in their breakfasts, and sleep pulling the blanket of motivation. And spend the whole day in motivation. Unfortunately, we cannot buy motivation in the market, but it is as essential as food, water and shelter. How do you imagine a person without motivation? As a pathetic loser who spends his life aimlessly (like animals) and dies without gaining any name & fame, or precisely, money? More or less, yes! By the way, why is this motivation so serious?

I tell you a fact: ‘Motivation’ is the most abused and harassed word by our grumpy looking bosses and geeky CEOs. They eat ‘motivation’ and excrete (I’m not supposed to use the other word) ‘motivation’. They are so messed up with the word ‘motivation’ that they have forgotten the true meaning, value and vastness of motivation. They motivate us in meetings, in conversation, at lunch, and while driving. They endeavor to instill motivation in our bodies as though someone blows air into balloons. The most upsetting part of the conversation is when they say ‘you should motivate yourself’. So, now you see that they themselves are not so motivated that they could motivate others without saying ‘motivate yourself’. Now the fact is your boss can never ‘motivate’ you.

Boss’s Motivation is Different from Employee’s

The thing which motivates boss doesn’t motivate employees. Bosses should know it; employees know it already. The boss who tries to motivate his employees by telling the stories of Napoleon and Abraham Lincoln are fools. Yes, I said ‘fool’, because I’m not supposed to use the word A***le. By the way, you are not ‘supposed’ to say or do many things in offices, and you are ‘supposed’ to be reminded of it by your boss frequently because the corporate world runs on lots of ‘supposition’. I was also not supposed to ask my boss ‘sir, how am I supposed to get motivated if you pay me the same salary even after two years?’. Then I realized my boss had taken my word seriously when, in the interview, I had told him ‘it is not the salary which motivates employees’. Well, you see I have been doing my job for two years at the same salary. You see, money couldn’t motivate me – to jump to another job.

Money Does Motivate, But Not Always

I know a guy who was highly motivated by money and incentives what he earned. He worked and worked and worked. Do you know what happened to this poor guy? His motivation was bought by some other company. I do believe, very soon he’ll get a better client than the current one. It’s vicious circle; he’s enjoying it. There was another guy who was not so lucky; he was thrown out of the company because he didn’t reach the target, and didn’t deserve the sumptuous salary. Then he realized that the motivation by money is not all, there is also something which is called ‘job security’. By the way, that enlightened guy was… me.

Is Job Security Really Motivating Me?

Here at my new office, it’s very warm and easy-going. The job is as good as a clerk’s job – everyday, the same thing. There is no fuss, no confusion, no tension, no pesky rule & regulations… but the lesser salary. However, I don’t feel like quitting this place, I want to go on with this job. It feels like something – something motivating in nature. Yes, it does feel like motivating.

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