One of the problems with becoming “red-pilled” is that a lot of simple pleasures become less simple. Steve Sailer always talks about noticing things, and once you start noticing things you can’t stop.
Popular culture becomes a real problem. Even the popular culture of the past can be perplexing. I love old movies but these days I can’t help noticing just how much propaganda Hollywood has always included in its movies. Back in the 30s and 40s and 50s the propaganda had to be subtle, they couldn’t risk showing their hand too obviously, but the messages are there and they’re insistent.
There is for example a subtle anti-marriage bias. The message is always that love is what matters, not commitment or responsibility. And it’s always pretty obvious that in this context love means pure sexual lust and/or abandonment to emotional excess. OK so we’d all like our marriages to include amazing heights of sexual passion and non-stop emotional bliss but we realise that in the real world it doesn’t always work that way. On the other hand commitment and responsibility can make for a relationship that is a lot more fulfilling in the long term. In a cautious low-key way the Hollywood movies of that era keep on undermining the commitment and responsibility bits. They couldn’t dare to attack marriage directly but there is quite a bit of undermining going on.
There’s an astonishing amount of anti-Christian propaganda, done very skillfully and very subtly indeed. Devout Christians are usually portrayed as being slightly ridiculous, or excessively moralistic, or (especially) hypocritical. Actually conforming to the teachings of Christianity is made to seem out-of-date and eccentric. For the most part the heroes we are encouraged to identify with are solidly secular.
Hollywood has always been basically hostile to western society and to Christian values although they used to be better at hiding the fact.
I’m also very fond of old TV shows, from the 50s up to the 70s. And again there’s a great deal of mostly low-key propaganda. If you watch British television from that era you’ll be hard pressed to find a single example of a sympathetic portrayal of a practising Christian. The message, never stated directly but always there, is that normal people are secular in outlook. Christians are odd.
The propaganda in American television in the 60s was often remarkably up-front. Anyone who’s ever watched Rod Serling’s classic The Twilight Zone will have noticed that they’re being subjected to an endless barrage of liberal propaganda. Serling used television as a soapbox, and he used it relentlessly. Star Trek creator Gene Roddenbery was another liberal who saw television as a means of pushing his agenda, although he was rarely as crude about it as Serling.
And of course there are the action heroines, the feminine and often petite ladies who can easily beat up bad guys twice their size. Feminist silliness has been preached tirelessly by television for sixty years now.
These are examples of message television that are fairly obvious but the same messages, in more muted firms, are present in countless series.
This doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to enjoy movies and television of the past. It is impossible to enjoy the movies and TV of today so the old stuff is really the only option. It can be enjoyed but you’ll still find yourself doing a lot of noticing. I blog about both old movies (at Classic Movie Ramblings) and old TV series (at Cult TV Lounge) and I try to concentrate on the positives and in those blogs I also try to avoid getting overtly political, although I do throw in some very low-key political observations. It’s quite an interesting challenge, trying not to frighten off readers who aren’t red-pilled.