Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Stairway To Cleveland

 So this isn't a spoiler, per se, unless you don't want a single bit of the new Wonder Woman sequel to be divulged. If that is your stated position, then avoid the following paragraph. Steve Trevor comes back from the past, by means that could best be described as "magic." Steve is a pilot, and has witnessed all kinds of bizarre stuff hanging around with his Amazonian girlfriend. Like lassos of truth and exhibitions of superhuman strength and bouncing bullets off bracelets and so forth. Yet, when this pilot from World War I with all this otherworldly experience shows up in 1984 and is reintroduced to the love to the love of his life in our nation's capital, Captain Steve Trevor is shocked and amazed to find himself riding on an escalator. After all he's been through, all he's seen, a moving staircase in a Metro station elicits shock and awe. 

Cinematically speaking, this isn't the first time that escalators have been used to elicit giggles from audiences. A few years ago, Will Ferrell came down from the North Pole and found himself, hold on to your sides, on an escalator. Yes, Buddy the elf is every bit as mystified by a moving staircase as Steve Trevor. No matter that Buddy works in a workshop with a bunch of Santa's little helpers, knows all of Santa's flying reindeer, whose boss is Santa. An escalator is magic. 

Which is a test of that old saw about how any new technology cannot be distinguished from magic. Which goes a long way to explaining why there are still so many Trump supporters. Way back when the former game show host and soon to be former president announced his candidacy, he made his entrance on an escalator. This was, no doubt, a way to accede to his own limitations when it comes to stairs, but also to put the fear of god in those who are easily impressed. 

Very easily. In the cases of Captain Trevor and Buddy the elf, they were able to get past that initial wave of confusion. Trump supporters are still trying to figure out where those stairs go. Asking them to believe in invisible germs or climate change is just not going to happen. 

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