Blood had been shed. Cardboard had been eaten. A War had started. A War for…
A COMPLICATED WEB OF PAPERS AND LIES.
“Happy Birthday Murderer” was cruel. I understand that it was a joke, and I’m not saying it was anything too awful, but it was cruel. My reply wouldn’t be another try at aping style. Oh no, HE ATE MY PACKAGE AND NOW HE HAD TO PAY. And so, for both this reason and because after murder we go into resurrection, I decided to delve into magic for the next installment of the Tape. I got to work right away, researching alchemy and the famed philosophers stone, said to have such magical properties as giving eternal life. I would craft a package that would be the philosophers stone, a package that would give the Tape life through the sacrifice of others through Fire, Water, and Wind. This may not make much sense now, but once you see this taped unpacking perhaps it will:
And what of the contents of the tape? How do you reply to such a personal attack? Should I incorporate the theme of Magic? Should I bring back the internet/tape favorite topic of cats? The answer to all of these questions was “Yes”. Going off of the four components of the philosopher’s stone, I created four different replies to the tape, each using a separate segment that had been established by tape standards: One would be a direct reply/recreation of Andrew’s cooking of my package with a cooking show with shared friend Ethan Holbrook; another would be a montage/poop of YouTube videos and footage from “16 Heads and Counting”, one of Andrew’s earlier works; the third segment would be all footage that I would shoot for this specific film; the fourth and final component was sound and title work.
But was this enough? As I said before, simply copying the format and structure of the previous installment of the tape wasn’t going to work. The flame war had begun, and it was my move. WHAT WAS THE BEST WAY TO DRAW BLOOD? Simple: The thing that Andrew destroyed of mine (my work) I would destroy of his. I would pick apart and criticize and do my best to obliterate everything Andrew created. No, wait… this was too big. Too big, and it would only cycle something as pointless as a comment battle in a chat room. Instead: I would destroy the components of the tape itself. I would turn a critical eye to “Happy Birthday Murderer” and destroy him that way.
Okay, so not everything was about avenging a cardboard collage. At the time of crafting “Powerful Magics” I also felt that there wasn’t as much thought in terms of structuring and treating this traveling tape like a letter in “Happy Birthday, Murderer” as I had put into the previous installment of “In Fridge” (I now recognize that this doesn’t matter in the least bit). But through the discussions and critiques that I included in this video, the focus shifted away from specific parts and more towards the whole concept of The Tape itself: Why were we doing this? What was the point? Is it viewable by anyone else, or does it exist as a mere amusement between myself and Andrew (This comes into great play with the Ghost Critique). I became the jerk who links to scholarly articles in the midst of a comment battle just to prove to everyone that my petty point of view is right and everyone else is wrong SO THERE.
In retrospect, the ideas for making “Powerful Magics” are a bit petty and unfounded, but the video itself is still pretty strong and certainly a great chapter in my work as a whole and my more freeform film making (This was also the video that made me notice that I had a pretty good understanding of Final Cut and editing). Andrew thought something similar (You can read his exact thoughts HERE), and the film was such a shock that the Tape has been out of circulation for about three and a half years now. For the longest time I was putting off freeform projects, in hopes that the Tape would come and I’d include everything in the next installment. But, as the years dragged on until present day, I’ve decided that it’s best to move on.