Back To Dionysius

We’re back from Hamlet and I was hoping to continue my Jacko versus Morrison argument with Dan but he preferred to get right back to another Brighton beach party. Jude Law went for the Dane and succeeded, his Hamlet was brave and accomplished in an otherwise flat and stale universe of geriatric mood and uneven casting. I don’t understand how, with London overcrowded with talent, so many directors are perverse in their casting. Ron Cook was the only other pleasurable sensation. 

I’m sorry Dan’s not around because I can’t talk knowledgeably about Morrison except to agree that his life was an embodiment of  Dionysian principles.  Whereas, shape shifting Jackson provoked – if only for moments that lasted as long as a track – a collective Dionysian abandon to mindless hysteria in his followers. There was nothing collective about Jim Morrison.

In these faithless times we elevate the famous, and the cult of celebrity, into new idols of worship, it seems in an attempt to return a sense of the divine to our lives. Rock stars, or footballers, who perform stoned, twisting and turning to the gyres, in vast spaces and excite a collective frenzy in their audiences may be our equivalent to that most mysterious member of the gods: Dionysius, who was god of theatre, intoxication and most important of all, abandonment.

Watching the panegyric of video tributes to the genies of Jackson,  on his iconoclastic journey,  it felt as though I was watching a shape shifting energy descend from the ‘flies’. Dionysius returned to whip his followers into a frenzy of abandonment and gratification. Yet, like any archetypal god, Jackson was only the empty vessel for ecstatic projections whilst his own life and death had an accelerating and visible tragic destiny. Jackson was the  puer prince of Peter Panhood. He surrounded himself with other ‘lost boys’, and an abused chimp, whose lives, it seems, he wished to indulge, in order to try in vain to heal the wounds of his own deprivations.

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