on life, music etc beyond mainstream

2017 11 Jan

The visceral dance of angels – „The OA“ (Netflix)

von: Michael Engelbrecht Filed under: Blog | TB | Tags: , , Comments off



„Well, you can look, you’ll walk in circles around me.
But first, I’ll walk in circles ‚round you.
But first, I’ll walk around the world.“

(Talking Heads, Thank You For Sending Me An Angel)


It’s always good when you don’t really understand (exactly) what’s going on, in storytelling. You might think you are on the right track, seeing clearly, and, suddenly, you’re wrongfooted, in nowhere land. (One reason, why i have a knack for great thriller books and crime novels.) It happens in your daily life anyway, but you prefer to retell the story of your life again and again (in the same manner) to produce the illusion of consistency. What you tell yourself often keeps your world more solid, super solid in times, though rock bottom is never that far away. And sometimes it produces demons, phantoms that are only brought into existence by the stories you tell.

THE OA is a masterpiece in analyzing the mechanisms of „modern griot“ / „campfire stories“. The writers of the eight episodes have an immense knowledge about near-death experiences (the literature, I mean), gestalt therapy, the Milton Erickson school of hypnosis – and techniques of suspense. If you want to succeed in the field of „psycho fiction“ and „mystery“, you have to stick to two rules: 1) Beforehand, move deep into parapsychology which is the scientific attempt to describe and explain enigmatic/so-called otherworldly phenomena, & 2) Stay brave, and leave your own comfort zones way behind you.

THE OA succeeds on many levels (also it is such a wonderful blend of rather disparate genres!) – and of course such a series gets enchanted as well as sobering reviews. Surely, I fell a bit under the spell of the master performance of Brit Marling. But don’t think I have a knack for the oh-so-mysterious-things. You remember the movie INCEPTION? That might surely be good stuff for people to open up for lucid dreaming or other strange states of the mind. But, slightly in opposition to the mainstream enthusiasm, I think it is an overloaded piece of crap. Self-indulgent, in false love with its own virtuosity.

My recommendation: don’t read anything on THE OA, no spoilers, just dive into it, and have a good look where you will end up. Might be, it makes a special proposal: you could (possibly) start telling a short, maybe a very short, tiny new story. About these „stranger things“ simply (simplified) called „you and your self“. Or you just say: „C’m on, Michael, this really  is a bit far-fetched!“ Is it? Never ever trust people who celebrate their version of knowledge with fucking seriousness and a complete absence of self irony.

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