Coostin’ 2016: May


Here at The Coost, we’re trying to live in the now, because now is pretty freaking exciting. At the conclusion of each month your coosts will fill you in on the stories that mattered to them. Some will be big, some will be small. Some will be global, some more local. Some will matter, some won’t. But they’re all us. They’re all coostin’. This is Coostin’ 2016…

There’s Plenty Going On in the World Right Now Worthy of Attention…

… But the ongoing plight of an English lady named Mary Kingston has been flying under the radar for too long now and simply must be brought to light. As (finally) reported by the Hull Daily Mail, Mary has had a solitary cactus spine stuck in her right forefinger for more than 20 years. To put that into context, 20 years is equivalent to 1,460 full cricket test matches or well over 43,000 decently long bar mitzvahs. I had a pimple that lasted nearly a week on the inside of my nose not long ago and that felt like a fucking eternity.

To me, the most alarming aspect of this story is that when Mary is not a practicing masochist she acts as a local councillor. Little wonder it is taking so bloody long for the pothole on Franklin Way to get filled in when she cannot be arsed to grab the tweezers out of the medicine cabinet.

Not only that, but at one point in the article Mrs Kingston casually mentions that she planted the cacti seeds only to remember she had done so “months later”. Unless she lives in the dense and leafy bosom of a tropical rainforest, which is improbable in the greater Hull area, there is little excuse for losing track of your own garden to that extent.

We often talk about governmental incompetence on a large scale but it so often starts on a local level and flourishes when left unchecked.

So has Mary had any significant take away from her ordeal? Learned any valuable lessons?

“I didn’t realise the significance of pricking your finger with cactus,” she deadpans. “It looks unsightly.”

Also, as an addendum, there appears to be a werewolf living in the sewers in Hull.

Marky Kingston is the embodiment of lower level government incompetence. Image courtesy
Marky Kingston is the embodiment of lower level government incompetence. Image courtesy

Mob Mentality

On May 28th 2016, the Cincinnati Zoo made the decision to kill a 17-year-old gorilla named Harambe in order to protect a four-year-old boy who fell into the animal’s enclosure. The outrage and controversy that followed is only to be expected, but some notable internet sources have been comparing the internet’s outrage to the “Cecil the Lion” killing from last July. In the Harambe case, the real controversy lies between the viral shaming and blaming of the mother’s “bad parenting” and the zoo’s decision to kill an endangered animal.

The situation itself is pretty basic. For probably a variety of reasons that a non-parent could never comprehend, this mother lost track of her child, said child crawled through the bushes and fell into a moat where a 400-pound gorilla dragged the boy around, bringing the child’s safety into question.

Not to belittle the obvious danger that the young boy was in, but I’d argue that what’s followed in the last week is much more disconcerting.

The internet’s herd mentality, though offering hours of hilarity when reading YouTube comments on popular music videos, is a dangerous one. It represents how individual people are influenced by their peers to follow certain trends or mindsets, and in this case it seems as though the collective internet presence of Western society has its eyes transfixed on Cincinnati. Facebook and Twitter are demanding some sort of justice, or at the very least accountability, even if the majority of the people who are making wild assumptions on the temperament of the gorilla or the parenting skills of the mother are in no way qualified to properly judge the situation or even offer any real alternative solutions. I have found myself recently giving advice to a close friend of mine who has become a new mother within the past year, knowing full well that without the experience of raising my own children my advice should be – and in all likelihood is – taken with a grain of salt.

When I think of a mob mentality, I always think back on the witch trial from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. What makes this vintage 70s clip so amusing is not only the farce of the 14th century peasants’ ignorance but its relevance 40 years later when comparing this same ignorance to how people demand social justice. It’s a great reflection of how we as a collective put people on trial for ridiculous reasons and then condemn them in some of the most primitive ways.

As the Cincinnati Zoo officials’ professional training and experience are belittled by animal rights activists and an outraged rabble wag their fingers at someone perceived to be an unfit parent, it’s clear that we, in short, haven’t evolved much past the pitchfork mobs of the middle ages.


Bond. Jane Bond.

With the next Bond film scheduled for a North American Fall/Autumn 2016 shoot date before a 2017 release, speculation is rife about who will play the iconic gentleman spy next. Or should that be gentleperson spy?

None other than Dana Scully herself set the net ablaze towards the end of May, retweeting a fan mock-up of a Bond poster that featured her front-and-center as 007.



Daenerys Targaryen also announced her unrealised dream is to take control of the double-0-seven kingdoms. But her comment that Leonardo DiCaprio would be her “ultimate leading man” suggests that Emilia Clarke, like Gillian Anderson, knows this is all tongue-in-cheek. A bit of fun. The next James Bond is not going to be a woman. And everyone knows it.

Put simply, there is zero need for an impetuous change to the formula. I’m not vehemently against the idea of James Bond becoming Jane Bond. The theory that “James Bond 007” is a codename and the six actors that have played “him” are all actually playing different people – a theory that I absolutely adore – lends itself to a female taking on the role. But it feels unnecessary and screams tokenism. By all means, start a female-lead spy franchise. I’d be first in line – just make it better than Salt. But can’t we leave Bond alone? Surely it’s hardly chauvinistic to suggest Bond remain a dude.

This past month saw more genuine spice added to the speculation. First, Jamie Bell was reported to have had “informal” talks with Bond head honcho Barbara Broccoli, the two currently working together on the project Film Stars Don’t Die. Later, Tom Hiddlestone was in “advanced” talks.

The buzz around Idris Elba seems to have dissipated, which is a real shame. Anyone that has seen Luther knows this man is the shit. He could comfortably bring the required swagger and charm and mix it with an elevated intensity suited to 007 but yet to be really seen in the character.

All of this speculation could yet be moot, as Daniel Craig himself isn’t a confirmed non-starter as yet – although his attitude in the lead up to Spectre suggests it’s unlikely. Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes, helmer of Skyfall and Spectre but now confirmed to be moving on, recently gave some home truths on how Bond actors are chosen. It’s well known that Broccoli, current Bond producer and daughter of original 007 franchise big dog Albert R. ‘Cubby’ Broccoli, has the last say.

“It’s not a democracy. It’s not The X Factor, it’s not the EU referendum, it’s not a public vote. Barbara Broccoli chooses who’s going to be the next Bond: end of story. I can guarantee whatever happens with it, it will not be what you expect.”

Which means those of us still dreaming of a Walther PPK-wielding Robbie Williams can dream a little longer…


Hail Hydra/ Hail Miles Morales

I come to you with two pieces of comic book news that will either bring back some nerd rage or make you squeal with glee. Maybe both. You see, every now and then comic book companies decide to shake things up to either…

A: Come up with new twists and explore different storylines for those around the central character

B: Create controversy by making the character do something way out of left field to help sell comics.

Let’s go with option B for the first piece of news. After the success of Captain America: Civil War and his subsequent return from being a pensioner, Marvel decided to try and double down on the comic sales by making Captain America reveal he was a Hydra shill this whole time!

Image courtesy

This should just be a mild annoyance since this is not the first time Steve Rogers has Nazi’d up (Captain America #24) and you should already be thankful they didn’t turn him into a wolfman again. So I won’t focus on the rage. They did this to Spider-Man too where he was body swapped with Doc Ock and that story line turned out really great, superior even.

Let’s show you the memes this Cap news generated!

Here's one for Nat Yorski. Image courtesy
Here’s one for Nat Yorski. Image courtesy
Yep, this is for season three. Image courtesy
Yep, this is for season three. Image courtesy
I`m going to get strongly worded letters for this. Image courtesy
I`m going to get strongly worded letters for this. Image courtesy

Now, here’s some better news for most people and angering news for racists. Miles Morales, the new Spider-Man, is getting a full length animated movie. As many know, Marvel also decided to do the option B with this (where B is that they have Spider-Man as a black/Latino kid) and it stuck. Brian Michael Bendis, the writer behind Miles Morales, is really good at creating new characters and fleshing them out. He’s the man behind Jessica Jones, who now has her own Netflix show.

If you haven't read Bendis' Alias, go read it now. Image courtesy
If you haven’t read Bendis’ Alias, go read it now. Image courtesy

A little background on this without going into too much on multiverses and stuff. Miles Morales is a kid from Brooklyn who was bitten by another genetically modified spider (Oscorp is really bad at containing its experiments) and takes up the mantle of Spider-Man after the tragic death of Peter Parker.

He has basically the same powers as Parker, with a few additions like a stinging touch that paralyzes his foes and the ability to completely blend in and disappear from his surroundings (invisibility).

Get Hype! Image courtesy
Get Hype! Image courtesy

I’m pretty hyped for this movie to come out because I finally get Miles Morales recognized as a legitimate hero within the Marvel universe. This will open the doors to other heroes like Kamala Khan (new Ms. Marvel, a Muslim from Jersey City). Also, we can probably get Donald Glover to voice him. I’m still waiting for Michael Cera to play Shaft though….




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