To Chernobyl, With Love

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So I made a big Instagram post about it describing my feelings. Ukraine officially opened Chernobyl up to visitors almost a decade ago, well before the miniseries was a twinkle in Mazin's eye, and the locals running tours didn't get the missive that they should behave with an appropriate degree of solemnity either. When a friend of mine went in , she and her tourmates were shown the trailer for the horror movie Chernobyl Diaries , starring Jesse McCartney, on their bus.

Rohani Adviser Shares 'Chernobyl' Love, Awaits Fallout

Mazin may have enshrined the Chernobyl disaster on premium cable in , but he doesn't have any more ownership over it than the viewers now rushing to defend the sanctity of the site online do. But with renewed interest in the year-old disaster has come a curious sense of moralizing proprietorship — which makes you wonder what, exactly, people are getting from the miniseries.

Chernobyl is, by any measure, an unlikely breakout hit. Even by the grim standards of prestige TV, it's grueling, beginning with the visceral reality of the reactor explosion and tracing all the ways in which mismanagement, denial, and a desire to protect the national image above all else led to more deaths. Its color palette is a nonstop barrage of greige, though there's also a distinctive industrial green that tends to adorn the walls whenever characters are hauled off after daring to speak up about the unfolding atrocities. Harris's character, whose suicide bookends the miniseries, is ostensibly its hero, though the show seems aware this is not a story suited to heroes, and it wanders away from him for long stretches to observe players on the ground.

Why Does Everyone Love "Chernobyl" So Much?

A lot of Chernobyl 's appeal comes from its astonishing attention to the minutiae that led Soviet-born, US-based writer Slava Malamud to claim, in a widely read thread , that "in this regard, Chernobyl is much more true to life than any Western show about Russia. At the same time, the perspective of the series is a decidedly Western one, clinging to characters who are forever surprised by realities they surely had to have been navigating all their lives.

So the creators of Chernobyl imagine confrontation where confrontation was unthinkable — and, in doing so, they cross the line from conjuring a fiction to creating a lie. But the series also feels like it suffers from the more general weakness of a lot of historical fare, which is that it finds it easier to look at the past by way of characters who have a comfortingly present-friendly point of view. The real scientist played by Harris and the fictional composite played by Watson are positioned as people who simply know better , both with regard to the disaster and to the regime under which they live.

And who doesn't want to believe they'd act similarly in any darker stretch of history? Chernobyl lets its viewers partake in the disaster and its fallout while feeling like there's no way this kind of collective failure would ever happen here or now. At the same time, as historian Kate Brown pointed out while talking to Gizmodo , one of the reasons there's so much renewed interest in Chernobyl is because we're reconsidering nuclear power thanks to climate change — a reality fraught with the kind of denialism and mismanagement that may well lead us toward another, much bigger, disaster.

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In The Dead Don't Die , the zombie apocalypse is brought about by polar fracking that's thrown the Earth off its axis, leaving the small American town of Centerville in a perpetual state of twilight. It plays like a not particularly subtle metaphor for ecological trauma, the kind of thing that should surely alarm residents. And yet most of them, including the cops played by Bill Murray and Adam Driver, react with bemused concern and no particular urgency, puttering around in their responsible electric cars while more and more zombies emerge and start devouring locals.

The Dead Don't Die is a notably sour movie, especially coming from someone like Jarmusch, a director whose previous work has always seemed deeply affectionate about human weirdness, but who in this one basically waves humanity off as deserving its own extinction.

Four Games To Play If You Love HBO's 'Chernobyl'

The Dead Don't Die is a slack comedy that's nothing like Chernobyl in tone, but I thought about it a lot while watching the miniseries. Very well told story of one man's curiosity in the world and how he found a way to make a bit of a difference. Erika Tamasfi rated it liked it Aug 09, Liana rated it really liked it Aug 11, Mark Blei rated it it was amazing May 30, Rista Fabricius rated it really liked it Jun 05, John rated it really liked it Aug 17, Vicky rated it it was amazing Dec 16, Devon Marie rated it it was amazing Dec 03, Elizabeth Fraser rated it it was amazing Mar 18, Jude rated it really liked it Feb 13, Steph Garrod rated it it was amazing Jan 09, Andrea rated it it was amazing Nov 25, Jan added it Apr 25, Katie Moncelsi marked it as to-read Mar 10, Saramarie added it Aug 12, Helen Sewell added it Jan 06, Kenny Turnbull marked it as to-read Jan 06, Steve added it Feb 08, Eppie marked it as to-read Apr 12, Alissa marked it as to-read May 25, Bob added it Jul 09, Steve Davis marked it as to-read Nov 22, Angela Cordova added it Jan 12, Meghann Smith added it May 31, Bequi marked it as to-read Feb 03, Michael marked it as to-read May 18, Dylan Beattie added it Nov 19, Cricket added it Dec 01, Ann marked it as to-read Aug 06, Sharon marked it as to-read Aug 14, Laura Alexander is currently reading it Sep 12, There are no discussion topics on this book yet.

About Murray Scougall.


  1. The Death of the American Death Penalty!
  2. Loved by a Long Neck (Dinosaur Beast Erotica) (University of Dinosaurs).
  3. Chernobyl's babushkas – the women who refused to leave the exclusion zone.
  4. What a Lovely Day for a Wedding;
  5. Chernobyl now: 'I was not afraid of radiation' – a photo essay | Environment | The Guardian.
  6. See a Problem?;
  7. Reporting from the Ruins of the Soviet Union.

Murray Scougall. Books by Murray Scougall. Trivia About To Chernobyl, Wit No trivia or quizzes yet.

Trauma of relocation

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