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Episode 239 - Cool World

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The gang all had different interpretations regarding why Holli and Deebs reverted to the doodles they did at the end of the movie. In particular, they wondered why Holli didn't just revert back to her original design. My interpretation of it was that a Noid turning Doodle will become a caricature of their inner self.  When it first occurs to Deebs, he becomes a kind of a cartoonish bum. As for Holli, as she insists on drawing attention to herself in increasingly ridiculous ways, her new Doodle form becomes a kind of bizarre clown monster. She doesn't become Holli as she was, because, as a Noid, that is no longer a reflection of who she is. This is also why when Deebs achieves self-actualization and give up his selfish ways in order to stop Holli, he goes from being a trash bag doodle to a superhero .  

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I couldn't help but join the conversation on this one. Here we go...

I think others have done pretty good work on the fictional cosmology here. Cool World and our world are part of a multiverse with different levels of chaos/malleability. Our world is pretty solid, while CW is much looser and more easily influenced by visitors (hence the power of ink). Sometimes people from this world can cross over into other worlds in moments of extreme emotion. Mostly they write it off as dreams or visions. Harris visited in a moment of trauma and just flat-out stayed (I'll get back to that in a second), while Jack visited in reaction to his own self-inflicted trauma and turned it into a successful comic book from prison. The stuff with Doc Whiskers and the Spike are pretty well explained elsewhere in this forum.

So I'll jump to theme. The movie Cool World is about dangerous imagination. Harris is unique in that he displays practically no imagination. He's Officer Friday crossed with Spock. His retreat into Cool World makes him an anomaly there, a force of rational order in a world of chaotic imagination. So of course he becomes a cop - it's a metaphorical way (which is how CW operates, really) to reconcile his presence there. Harris is also kind of the early 20th century response to dangerous imagination - keep it under wraps and regulated and absolutely NO SEX (think the Hays Code or the CCA).

That brings us to Jack. He taps directly into messy, chaotic CW and instead of trying to control it, he turns it loose in the form of a prison comic. He's kind of a stand-in for Bakshi and Crumb and those underground comix guys that shrugged at codes and rules and went wherever their imagination took them, usually into a more extreme place like CW. Holli places in as the seductive and destructive lure of that world, and if we stick with this logic, removing the Spike shows what happens when that lack of intention with regards to creation gets out of control. It is shown to be ultimately unfulfilling and potentially destructive. In the end, while Jack does replace the Spike, he's consumed by his own id (becoming animated and stuck with Holli). Harris on the other hand, through his resurrection as a doodle, embraces his own imagination. So thematically, Cool World wants us to know that we can't deny our creative impulses, but we shouldn't give into them either.

 

Of course, it's also a terrible movie that was put through a blender by the Hollywood system. I can't necessarily say that any of this really works, but it was fun to think about while listening to the episode. Thanks for that, guys.
 

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As the gang and others have already stated, I really had a hard time understanding what was actually happening in the movie. Like, I got the broad strokes of it all, but when it came down to the details, motivations and plot points would seemingly change on a whim--which is truly bizarre in an animated movie. For instance, when Doc Whiskers and Holli meet in Las Vegas, she tells him she wants it so that she can be real. He responds by saying that getting the Spike is impossible, because when *he* tried (because I guess he was trying to become human too?) it almost killed him. But in the very next scene, he tells Deebs and Harris that if she removes the spike it will destroy both universes. So...which is it? Does removing the Spike turn you human or does it destroy the multiverse? And if Doc Whiskers knew that removing it would destroy both universes, why did he even attempt to remove it? I feel like his character is far more insidious than we are led to believe.

Of course none of this really matters as the result of removing the Spike turns out to be a completely different scenario in which no one turns human neither universe is destroyed but rather combined. 

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35 minutes ago, foolwriter said:

I couldn't help but join the conversation on this one.

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I think teen(?) neighbor was just a fan of Deebs' work and stoked that he was living/lived next door. Her taking any excuse to go over and see him/hang out with him was pretty on-brand for being a teenage girl and meeting someone you admire. The mom was just being a good parent and humoring her in going over there when Deebs and Holli return from Cool World, then probably gave her daughter an earful when they got home about hanging around weirdos. Can relate from personal experience. 🙃

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Honestly, while the entire movie is pretty crazy, the wildest moment for me was after Holli kills Harris and then makes the decision to continue her journey to the roof by climbing up from balcony to balcony. You have killed literally the only person actively trying to stop you. Take the freaking stairs, Holli. 

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8 hours ago, foolwriter said:

I couldn't help but join the conversation on this one. Here we go...

I think others have done pretty good work on the fictional cosmology here. Cool World and our world are part of a multiverse with different levels of chaos/malleability. Our world is pretty solid, while CW is much looser and more easily influenced by visitors (hence the power of ink). Sometimes people from this world can cross over into other worlds in moments of extreme emotion. Mostly they write it off as dreams or visions. Harris visited in a moment of trauma and just flat-out stayed (I'll get back to that in a second), while Jack visited in reaction to his own self-inflicted trauma and turned it into a successful comic book from prison. The stuff with Doc Whiskers and the Spike are pretty well explained elsewhere in this forum.

So I'll jump to theme. The movie Cool World is about dangerous imagination. Harris is unique in that he displays practically no imagination. He's Officer Friday crossed with Spock. His retreat into Cool World makes him an anomaly there, a force of rational order in a world of chaotic imagination. So of course he becomes a cop - it's a metaphorical way (which is how CW operates, really) to reconcile his presence there. Harris is also kind of the early 20th century response to dangerous imagination - keep it under wraps and regulated and absolutely NO SEX (think the Hays Code or the CCA).

That brings us to Jack. He taps directly into messy, chaotic CW and instead of trying to control it, he turns it loose in the form of a prison comic. He's kind of a stand-in for Bakshi and Crumb and those underground comix guys that shrugged at codes and rules and went wherever their imagination took them, usually into a more extreme place like CW. Holli places in as the seductive and destructive lure of that world, and if we stick with this logic, removing the Spike shows what happens when that lack of intention with regards to creation gets out of control. It is shown to be ultimately unfulfilling and potentially destructive. In the end, while Jack does replace the Spike, he's consumed by his own id (becoming animated and stuck with Holli). Harris on the other hand, through his resurrection as a doodle, embraces his own imagination. So thematically, Cool World wants us to know that we can't deny our creative impulses, but we shouldn't give into them either.

 

Of course, it's also a terrible movie that was put through a blender by the Hollywood system. I can't necessarily say that any of this really works, but it was fun to think about while listening to the episode. Thanks for that, guys.
 

I like your version of things better. There is serious thought and metaphor put into it. I watched the movie and knew that they didn't put either of those things into it so I went by what dialogue I could find.

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8 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

As the gang and others have already stated, I really had a hard time understanding what was actually happening in the movie. Like, I got the broad strokes of it all, but when it came down to the details, motivations and plot points would seemingly change on a whim--which is truly bizarre in an animated movie. For instance, when Doc Whiskers and Holli meet in Las Vegas, she tells him she wants it so that she can be real. He responds by saying that getting the Spike is impossible, because when *he* tried (because I guess he was trying to become human too?) it almost killed him. But in the very next scene, he tells Deebs and Harris that if she removes the spike it will destroy both universes. So...which is it? Does removing the Spike turn you human or does it destroy the multiverse? And if Doc Whiskers knew that removing it would destroy both universes, why did he even attempt to remove it? I feel like his character is far more insidious than we are led to believe.

Of course none of this really matters as the result of removing the Spike turns out to be a completely different scenario in which no one turns human neither universe is destroyed but rather combined. 

You know I got bad vibes from him too! First, it's Maurice Lamarche! Brain himself! Kiff! Egon! A million other things! So he's an incredible talent and I don't want to fault him but certain lines of his had real sinister line readings. I keep wondering how good his intention were as well.

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When Nails is scaling Holli’s tower and hauling Harris behind him, how come they didn’t go the distance and just have Brad Pitt grabbing a web coming out of Nails’ anal gland? This 100% feels like the type of movie to go there, why chicken out? 

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There was one moment in the movie that really bummed me out. Not the death of Brad Pitt's mother but rather the said reality of what it means to be a doodle. When Holli is first explaining to Brad Pitt why she wants to be human she talks about the power that noids have. She says "When they touch something they feel it and when they taste something they really taste it and when they do it with a man they really do it." When you think about it it makes sense. Doodles and get blown up, smooshed, beat up and twisted all about and that's because they feel nothing. There is a masochist goon character in this movie who is being tortured just because he too wants to feel something. They have no need to eat or drink which means there is no fun or joy in their bars and dinners. Imagine a life where you only have the senses of sight and hearing and that's it. It's a boring dull life and making connections with others is hard and ultimately not fulfilling. It is a hell and no wonder she wants out.

Also if when doodles do it they don't really do it, I feel very sorry for Brad Pitt at the end of the movie...

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7 minutes ago, Cam Bert said:

Also if when doodles do it they don't really do it, I feel very sorry for Brad Pitt at the end of the movie...

Yes! For Lonnette too! I was like, “Enjoy your eternity of joyless, cartoon sex, I guess.”

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I haven’t watched the movie yet but I will (??). I just wanted to say that it was extremely funny hearing everyone on HDTGM try to describe the plot. Every time someone—especially June—started a sentence making a semi-serious point saying “So when Doc Whiskers...” , I burst out laughing at how preposterous it sounded.

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2 hours ago, Cameron H. said:

When Nails is scaling Holli’s tower and hauling Harris behind him, how come they didn’t go the distance and just have Brad Pitt grabbing a web coming out of Nails’ anal gland? This 100% feels like the type of movie to go there, why chicken out? 

I know the original story idea was for an R-rated movie, but did they also originally have an R-rated cut of this movie?  There were several times where it felt like an edit was made that removed some of the more explicitly sexual content.

For example, it felt like they filmed and then cut out a scene of Holli giving Deebs oral sex in front of the neighbor and her mom.

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The comic book adaptation of the film script expanded on the significance of the neighbors. The mother is visited by a police detective who tells her the neighbor she testified against is being released from prison due to the parole board judging him unlikely to reoffend. She says she's been afraid for ten years of him returning. Deebs knows Jennifer or knew her 10 years ago. The interactions between them goes further where he goes to see her school play even though the mom does not want him around. There's a weird attraction thing going on between them in a couple lines that's so much worse with that context.

The comic book expands the "Sweet Place" and it's an area where things are different. It's more kid friendly but Deebs ends up sick from the sweets.

Also, a major shout out to the George Herriman reference at the end. George Herriman created Krazy Kat and Ignatz Mouse. The landscape is from that comic strip. Pretty fitting for a comic creator to wind up there.

The ending has a cool moment where the Cool World starts turning human while the real world turns doodle. The ending for Deebs is also a little different where he's left all alone.

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First time posting, so forgive me if I'm not exactly doing this right but going off of what foolwriter said in terms of Harris vs. Deebs, I think they also serve to show that crime doesn't pay, but if you follow the rules you will be rewarded. Harris is a soldier who went off to fight for his country and while he escaped the horrors of the war, he found civilian life was just as brutal.  I think this is why he chose to stay in Cool World, there pain and death aren't permanent. He meets and falls in love with a doodle, but despite potentially decades of sexual tension, follows the rules and only goes as far as the rules allow. In the end he is rewarded and his death allows him to fully be with the woman he loves. Deeb is a murderer, who despite several warnings, breaks the rules. In the end he ends up with a woman who hates him. 

One thing I don't understand is that if Holliwood wanted to be a noid so badly, when she removed the spike and everything started turning into Cool World, why didn't she try to stick that sucker back herself? Just figured if we're all doodles that's cool too?

22 hours ago, foolwriter said:

I couldn't help but join the conversation on this one. Here we go...

I think others have done pretty good work on the fictional cosmology here. Cool World and our world are part of a multiverse with different levels of chaos/malleability. Our world is pretty solid, while CW is much looser and more easily influenced by visitors (hence the power of ink). Sometimes people from this world can cross over into other worlds in moments of extreme emotion. Mostly they write it off as dreams or visions. Harris visited in a moment of trauma and just flat-out stayed (I'll get back to that in a second), while Jack visited in reaction to his own self-inflicted trauma and turned it into a successful comic book from prison. The stuff with Doc Whiskers and the Spike are pretty well explained elsewhere in this forum.

So I'll jump to theme. The movie Cool World is about dangerous imagination. Harris is unique in that he displays practically no imagination. He's Officer Friday crossed with Spock. His retreat into Cool World makes him an anomaly there, a force of rational order in a world of chaotic imagination. So of course he becomes a cop - it's a metaphorical way (which is how CW operates, really) to reconcile his presence there. Harris is also kind of the early 20th century response to dangerous imagination - keep it under wraps and regulated and absolutely NO SEX (think the Hays Code or the CCA).

That brings us to Jack. He taps directly into messy, chaotic CW and instead of trying to control it, he turns it loose in the form of a prison comic. He's kind of a stand-in for Bakshi and Crumb and those underground comix guys that shrugged at codes and rules and went wherever their imagination took them, usually into a more extreme place like CW. Holli places in as the seductive and destructive lure of that world, and if we stick with this logic, removing the Spike shows what happens when that lack of intention with regards to creation gets out of control. It is shown to be ultimately unfulfilling and potentially destructive. In the end, while Jack does replace the Spike, he's consumed by his own id (becoming animated and stuck with Holli). Harris on the other hand, through his resurrection as a doodle, embraces his own imagination. So thematically, Cool World wants us to know that we can't deny our creative impulses, but we shouldn't give into them either.

 

Of course, it's also a terrible movie that was put through a blender by the Hollywood system. I can't necessarily say that any of this really works, but it was fun to think about while listening to the episode. Thanks for that, guys.
 

 

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3 hours ago, jacofnotrades said:

One thing I don't understand is that if Holliwood wanted to be a noid so badly, when she removed the spike and everything started turning into Cool World, why didn't she try to stick that sucker back herself?

Not only that, but as they fly over the city being infected with Doodledom, she triumphantly cries, “We’re free!” and I was like, “Wait, was THAT what you were trying to do? I thought you wanted to be a Noid...or destroy the multiverse...or something.”

Welcome to the boards :) 

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Frank's girlfriend asks if he was killed by a Doodle. If so, he will become a Doodle. I don't remember this rule being mentioned before but does that mean she was originally a Noid who was killed by a Doodle and that's how she knows this rule?

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4 hours ago, The_Other_MikeD said:

Frank's girlfriend asks if he was killed by a Doodle. If so, he will become a Doodle. I don't remember this rule being mentioned before but does that mean she was originally a Noid who was killed by a Doodle and that's how she knows this rule?

You know I thought a lot about this. Lonette and Holli are in a completely different style than the rest of the doodles so when Brad Pitt was turned into a doodle I thought he would be in a similar style to them but is far more cartoony then them. 

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If you want a real marker of of little attention or care was put into this movie look no further than the rabbit losing the dice game. She rolls two twos but the demon baby removes two dots from from the dice making it snake eyes. Fine, classic cartoon gag. Then when we cut back, both the dice are showing two threes. Not only that but one of the other sides of the die that is visible has a four. Anybody that knows anything knows that two opposite sides of a die add up to seven, so how can the three be on top and four on the side. They aren't even trying or paying attention.

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Correct me if I'm wrong, (and I do not doubt that I could very, very be wrong), but Vegas Vinnie *is* Doc Whiskers, right? He's the one who traveled to the real world with the spike and set everything up Vegas. If that's the case, then I would have to assume that Doc W was, at least for time, a Noid. I mean, how else would he be able to establish a foothold in the real world without being immediately dissected by the military for being some kind of bizarre, interdimensional oddity? We also know that a Doodle can't just go to the real world. They have to be humanized first. And the only way they can be humanized is through sex with a Noid. So, I guess what I'm asking is: Brad Pitt totally fucked Doc Whiskers, right?

 

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46 minutes ago, Cam Bert said:

If you want a real marker of of little attention or care was put into this movie look no further than the rabbit losing the dice game. She rolls two twos but the demon baby removes two dots from from the dice making it snake eyes. Fine, classic cartoon gag. Then when we cut back, both the dice are showing two threes. Not only that but one of the other sides of the die that is visible has a four. Anybody that knows anything knows that two opposite sides of a die add up to seven, so how can the three be on top and four on the side. They aren't even trying or paying attention.

image.jpeg.8fcee48d50d19217067942c22f03f89b.jpeg

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47 minutes ago, Cameron H. said:

Correct me if I'm wrong, (and I do not doubt that I could very, very be wrong), but Vegas Vinnie *is* Doc Whiskers, right? He's the one who traveled to the real world with the spike and set everything up Vegas. If that's the case, then I would have to assume that Doc W was, at least for time, a Noid. I mean, how else would he be able to establish a foothold in the real world without being immediately dissected by the military for being some kind of bizarre, interdimensional oddity? We also know that a Doodle can't just go to the real world. They have to be humanized first. And the only way they can be humanized is through sex with a Noid. So, I guess what I'm asking is: Brad Pitt totally fucked Doc Whiskers, right?

 

Yes to all of it.

What is weirder is Holli has a picture of him in front of his casino in her room. In it he look very doodle like. Also, why does she have a picture of him? When they meet at the end they're like complete strangers. I haven't had a picture that big of somebody I didn't know on my walls since I was a teenager.

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35 minutes ago, DrGuts1003 said:

image.jpeg.8fcee48d50d19217067942c22f03f89b.jpeg

Well played.

I honestly wish that scene didn't bother me as much as it did

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3 hours ago, Cam Bert said:

If you want a real marker of of little attention or care was put into this movie look no further than the rabbit losing the dice game. She rolls two twos but the demon baby removes two dots from from the dice making it snake eyes. Fine, classic cartoon gag. Then when we cut back, both the dice are showing two threes. Not only that but one of the other sides of the die that is visible has a four. Anybody that knows anything knows that two opposite sides of a die add up to seven, so how can the three be on top and four on the side. They aren't even trying or paying attention.

In the same scene, that rabbit is supposed to represent Roger Rabbit. I wouldn't have thought anything about a rabbit with no obvious visual connections between them. The woman who starts speaking to the rabbit is wearing Jessica Rabbit's signature outfit of a red dress with purple opera gloves with purple eye shadow. I don't think that's a coincidence.

cuHtl11.jpg

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I believe the reason why she had the picture of him is the same reason we had those posters up in our rooms as teenagers: he was essentially her hero or like how some kids would have posters of Mustangs on their walls, it serves as a reminder of what she wants to achieve.

Another question is how did she get the picture or is it just an imagining of what she thinks it all looks like? It is mentioned about noids "slipping" into Cool World, but can doodles "slip" into our world? She had a knowledge of the real world so I guess yes or maybe she learned from the noids who crossed-over?

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