Nutrition Numbers and The Batman

Diary, 5/5 to 5/6/22: a nutritional breakfast? Candy Bars; The Faculty; TED Talks; The Batman and his chin panned, compared to Dark Knight and Joker. And that’s all, folks. Except puns.

The Batman and His Chin

Copyright 2022 (text only) by Alan Carl Nicoll
All Rights Reserved

{5/5/22} Continued.

This morning’s breakfast:

This morning’s breakfast, with bookcase

A banana and orange juice smoothie with the new protein powder, “TopCare Plant Protein Powder Blend, Vanilla Flavor.”  Cheetos, somewhat less than a cup, and the other half of the banana behind the blender cup (on top of some loose post-it notes) and the 7-day pill container.  Not shown is dessert, a Mounds bar.  I’m happy to say that the smoothie was pretty good—I can imagine having that every day.  It was sweet enough, less chalky than the other powder, and with the candy bar it was just enough to get me through to lunch.  The green thing on the left is a highlighter.  The “table” is a TV tray from Wal-Mart; part of a second one is just visible above the banana.

In the background you can see about half my CD collection (the rest is on the top shelf); below that is two shelves of poetry and plays, not including the Yale Shakespeare in about 45 little blue volumes, stacked up rather inaccessibly in my bedroom.

The numbers for this self-indulgent breakfast [apologies for the primitive formatting]:

Protein powder:  120 calories, 20 g protein, 0 g fiber, 310 mg sodium

Banana (medium):  109 calories, 1 g protein, 3 g fiber, 1 mg sodium

Orange juice, 8 oz:  110 calories, 2 g protein, 0 g fiber, 0 mg sodium

Cheetos, 1 oz (est.):  160 calories, 2 g protein, <1 g fiber, 250 mg sodium

Mounds, 1.75 oz:  230 calories, 2 g protein, 3 g fiber, 55 mg sodium

Totals:  729 calories, 27 g protein, 6.5 g fiber, 616 mg sodium.

Totals for just the smoothie:  339 calories, 23 g protein, 3 g fiber, 311 mg sodium.

The other protein powder, Garden of Life Raw Organic Meal organic shake & meal replacement has 130 calories, 20 g protein, 3 g fiber, 150 mg sodium.

This breakfast is way more sodium than I should be having; without the Cheetos it would still be higher than I’d like.  The orange juice is bottled, “not from concentrate.”  The numbers are from the packages, except for the banana which are from The Nutribase Complete Book of Food Counts, Avery, New York, 2001.  I ate the Mounds because “I was still hungry”; if I’d had a granola bar, I had two choices of Quaker Chewy:

Chocolate chip, 0.84 oz:  100 calories, 1 g protein, 1 g fiber, 70 mg sodium

Dipps chocolate chip, 1.09 oz:  140 calories, 1 g protein, 1 g fiber, 85 mg sodium

The sugar numbers are also worth noting:  7 g and 13 g respectively, Mounds 21 g.  Looks like I’d do about as well to eat one of each of the granola bars in place of the Mounds.  People who eat granola bars, thinking they’re healthier than candy bars, should look at the actual numbers.  Of course, it’s possible to get better granola bars than these Quaker things.  And of course it’s possible to get “worse” candy than Mounds.  A couple of my other favorites would be 3 Musketeers and Big Cherry, but I don’t have all the numbers for these.  The 3 Musketeers (except for sugar, not listed) is roughly comparable to Mounds, while Big Cherry is not listed in my book.

This morning I watched The Faculty (1998), an amusing, quirky Body Snatchers clone with a good cast providing whatever chills are provided—for me, that was few.  It was fun seeing Elijah Wood, Piper Laurie, and other familiar faces.  Clocks in at a 55% “splat” from audiences and critics at Rotten Tomatoes.  I can’t recommend it, however, and don’t really feel like saying anything more about it.  The activity in the high school setting was pretty incredible, meaning, unbelievable.

James Bridle

Watched three Ted Talk videos on YouTube, the most interesting being “The nightmare videos of childrens’ YouTube — and what’s wrong with the internet today”, by James Bridle (pictured).  Link.  Since it’s four years old, it’s likely that things have changed somewhat on YouTube, but some of the larger issues are timeless.

Saw The Batman (2022) on HBO—it’s a free sample for a few days.  I was disappointed, finding it inferior to The Dark Knight (2008) in all respects.  Also, at three hours, it’s too long by a lot.  The major failings are:  inferior acting from the male lead, inferior script, inferior dialogue, direction, soundtrack, sound (speeches often inaudible), production design (dullest Batcave ever), even cinematography, and especially, an inferior Batmobile.  They’ve been trying to sell teen heartthrob Robert Pattinson as “the ideal Batman,” but what a joke:  he’s totally wooden and plays the whole show with hair hanging in his face.  The Catwoman and Bruce Gordon were both quite forgettable.  Around halfway through there’s a long chase scene as Batman tries to catch up to the Penguin…really?  In the Batmobile?  I mentally compared this with the fantastic chase “set piece” in the Dark Knight, but it was “no comparison”:  like “Knight and Dull.”  This movie is completely humorless, it had too many “bad guys” to keep straight, is virtually without subplot, and it was simply not much fun.  Chief villain “The Riddler” is okay, passable, but lacking in everything that made Ledger’s “Joker” incomparable [except Joaquin Phoenix!].  “The Penguin” has a small part and is virtually wasted; compare this with “Two Face” in Dark Knight.  Rotten Tomatoes scores of 85% from critics and 87% from audiences (Dark Knight: 94 and 94).  For me the clincher is that I’ve seen Dark Knight ten or twelve times and still love it, would watch it again with pleasure, but I don’t expect ever to watch The Batman again.  I can almost believe that it was “made on the cheap.”  I’d rather see Venom again, or Wonder Woman, two dogs with a few plusses.


Joker‘s iconic moment (of several)

Perhaps it would be gratuitous at this point to say more about The Batman, but two things:  first, given Pattinson’s recognizable chin and that he makes no effort to disguise his voice when he dons his armor, it seems pretty obvious that he would have been recognized.  And—did we really need this movie?  Couldn’t we have had the next installment of Justice League instead?  Unlike the vastly superior Joker (2019), this Batman doesn’t have even one iconic visual; it just doesn’t earn its cape.

Copyright 2022 (text only) by Alan Carl Nicoll
All Rights Reserved

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