Space Ramblings

RoboIrony Dies in America

Whether you view Robocop as a commentary on Dirty Harry and modern automation, or Verhoeven’s take on him as an American Jesus, most Americans think of him as a robot that killed people in cool ways. And so Detroit’s getting a Robocop statue.

A Robocop statue is probably the last thing Detroit needs. The movie was about the collapse of Detroit, corporate takeovers of urban centers, decay and crime so pervasive that people were willing to lose their souls to survive. So far we’ve got two out of three. If Rocky at least honored Philly’s working class tradition of perseverance, Robocop is a commentary and not a good one.

So why then? Because irony is dead. It used to be that irony was a closed book to dumb people. Now it’s a closed book even to smart people. Once irony became meta, people began doing stupid things and calling them ironic. And now everyone is stupid. It’s the real Twitter effect. A stupid idea gets taken up, whether it’s Snakes on a Plane or Donald Glover as Spider-Man or Betty White on Saturday Night Live or a Robocop statue for Detroit.

Maybe when this statue goes up, Robocop can get credit for killing irony in America.

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  • Heavy Armor February 20, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    Robocop is “The Matrix”.

    Both started as commentaries on the American condition, although Robocop articulated this better. The second movie hollowed out the premise of the first, and the third movie became nothing more than an empty shell for the series.

    The Robocop series, however had better video games than the Matrix series.

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