NPR logo Open Questions: What Do You Shove Into The Hands Of The Unwilling?

Open Questions

Open Questions: What Do You Shove Into The Hands Of The Unwilling?

Open Questions Week continues, and today, I want to ask about pushing and shoving.

We all do it. "You have to watch this movie. Sit down. I'm putting the DVD in. Hey-hey-hey — don't try to stand up. Sit down. On the couch. Stop talking. I'm pressing 'play.' Don't try to go to the kitchen, or I'll make you watch it twice."

Or maybe you do it with music: "I'm putting this on your iPod, and if you try to remove it, your iPod will blow up, and if you don't listen to it within a week, it will start destroying files. You don't want that, do you? I didn't think so."

This is cultural proselytizing by brute force, and you only do it with people you really like, because anyone else would probably be rather unsettled by it.

Frisky Dingo: You should watch. No, really, you should watch. Adult Swim hide caption

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Adult Swim

For me, on New Year's Eve, it was Frisky Dingo, an Adult Swim cartoon I discussed in the year-end TV-on-DVD piece. You almost have to force Frisky Dingo on people, because they will almost certainly have never heard of it, the concept (superhero parody) doesn't exactly sell itself, and the name sounds like it refers to either something very child-oriented or something very adult-oriented, depending on your point of view.

But it's riotously funny, and I find that most people can be hooked within one or two 11-minute episodes. It's just a matter of getting them into the handcuffs.

So what do you find yourself pushing most frequently? Is it something obscure? Something popular that most of your friends eschew as hopelessly middlebrow? A movie everyone else has forgotten all about? You never know; maybe you can pick up a convert, and isn't that what it's all about?