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Preview — Role Models by John Waters
Here, from the incomparable John Waters, is a paean to the power of subversive inspiration that will delight, amuse, enrich--and happily horrify readers everywhere.
Role Models is, in fact, a self-portrait told through intimate profiles of favorite personalities--some famous, some unknown, some criminal, some surprisingly middle-of-the-road. From Esther Martin, owner of t
John Waters is infectious. And I mean that in the best possible way. His passion and enthusiasm for his "role models" is so genuine and palpable that it's impossible to not want to sit down with him immediately and chat on and on in a relentless, otaku way about all these wonderful people and obsessions - even the ones that are so completely disgusting and horrifying! But that's Waters' charm.
There's nothing I love more than a bona fide celebrity who is in...more
Or both, I think.
Two lovely British friends came to visit. We took the bus to New York, and then Boston.
In Boston, we visited Harvard, and Harvard Book Store. I saw this book, and picked it up from the Biography/Celebrity section.
The next day, I flew back to Baltimore.
As I was waiting in line at the airport, I swore I saw someone that looked like John Waters. "No, that cannot be him," I thought, as nothing as ever really happens to me, ever.
After the two hour plane...more
You should never read for "enjoyment". Read to make yourself smarter. Or less judgmental. More apt to understand your friends' insane behavior, or better yet, your own. Pick "hard books". Ones you have to concentrate on while reading. And for God's sake, don't ever let me hear you say, "I can't read fiction. I only have time for the truth." Fiction is the truth, fool! Ever hear of "literature"? That means fiction too, stupid.
John Waters isn't exactly a role model fo...more
Also his appreciation for various Gay Porn directors is both hysterical and moving at the same time. John Waters is one of those once-in-a-lifetime type of character who can...more
this is a book devoted to the people who've inspired him throughout his life, and it includes some of his very best stories. the absolute tour-de-force is the narrative of his friendship with leslie van houten. van houten was one of the manson girls in the late 60's, and waters has been v...more
Here's where John reached out from the linen-wannabe pages and made me gasp in awe. From this, it is clear that we have more than dirty thoughts in common. Three years of running a book club forced me to bite my ton...more
So what made me seek solace in the words of an eccentric smart-ass like John Waters?
For starters: boredom, pop culture, cheesy books that stayed on the bestseller list for 187 weeks then later it flagellated to the Manson murders, his flamboyancy, a barbaric number of books he owns, a shocking peek on some role models of his own and of course, an introduction to the demigod of the Southern Gothic Literature, Tennessee Williams.
John Waters pioneered the campaign of turning filth into camp. When Divine ate dog excrement (for real) in Pink Flamingo, I was petrified. But I LOLed at the absurdity of the whole thing.
In this hilarious autobiography, Waters introduces us to some of his role models. Don't be alarmed, not all of them are pervs. The belov...more
This book is just pure fucking maniacal hysterical brilliance. You need to read it. Immediately. Get the audio book, please, because there is nothing comparable to the slithering way that John Waters pronounces the word "hilarious."
And after I finished the book:
This is a memoir-ish collection of inspired essays about John Water's "role models" - mostly people he idolizes, but also some minor dabbling in his own potential cult leader abilities. Here he is, the Pope of Trash, th...more
I have never seen a John Waters film from beginning to end, but I do remember visiting my friend Chris Barton in his multiple apartments in Muncie, IN and there always seemed to be a Waters' movie playing in the background. I knew of Divine because of him and could even identify her today if a photo was in front of me. But...I couldn't tell you which film she was in (was she in all of his???) or anything else...more
I wouldn't call myself a rabid fan, I like some of his movies and projects more than others but I love the idea of them. You just need to have a healthy respect for him to enjoy thi...more
But anyway. This guy's life is awesome. I like how he's basically always working at something, (and not just making movies/being famous) except on...more
The issues I had were less with the content and more with the editing/style/presentation. The essays are a little inconsistent, with some being knock-outs, and others being a bit of a slog. The chapters where he goes and visits his various heroes and role models or their family members are definitely the best ones. His interview with Johnny Mathis, with friends and relatives of various Baltimore he...more
John Waters is aware that fans of his cult movies look to him as an exemplar of certain ideas about taste, social class, gender and fame -- specifically, inverting the dominant culture's stance on all of these things to create a Dreamland for 'minorities who don't even fit in with their own minorities'. He has always been open about his own fandom, whether reflected in the stuntcasting/retrocasting of Tab Hunter...more
This started out ok but I really lost it on the ridiculously long chapter about his friendship with one of the Manson girls. I just don't care that much...
I just got a little tired of his need to constantly remind the reader that he is weird and wacky. First of all, I know that and secondly, having to remind the reader of it kind of makes you a self-promoting bore.
A better book to read about John and his life is Shock Value and Crackpot.
Some of the essays were better than others, but that's typical.
I think what really makes this special is that Waters is a pop- and fringe-culture encyclopedia, particularly from a certain era before I was born, so I put the book down every few moments to look up some reference he dropped. It was educational.
This was the first of his books that I have read and I really enjoyed it. It was fascinating, unpredictable, and a bit sick. So, definitively John Waters.
The book (non-fiction) contains a series of chapters discussing varies people who have influence the author's life. These people rang from...more
Charlie Manson? But Waters made all of these topics, and others, enormously interesting, very informative and hugely entertaining. A wonderful batch of essays that captures Waters' zeitgeist perfectly.
Read as a recorded book, read by Waters himself. I usually avoid books read by the authors, but I can't imagine anyone giving a better reading. You could tell he...more