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S2_02: Micro love stories by a fashion house, Batman as a silent film, and nonsense music

S2_02: Micro love stories by a fashion house, Batman as a silent film, and nonsense music

Hello and welcome to Tiny Wonderful Things, Season 2 Issue 2. It's October, one of my favorite months of the year. Crisp air, moonlit nights, spooky tales and cozy as a vibe. While we'll be serving up our usual dose of wonder in its many forms across all media, this month we'll inch closer to the haunted and the creepy. As I like to say, wonder and terror are so far from each other that they end up meeting less as distant enemies but as close friends. Reader beware. Next week, we have a special themed issue coming up. Want a hint? You'll find the truth out there.

This week's featured image is from the Liquid Mirror series by artist Jordan Tiberio.

Someone made Batman into a silent film

A mysterious stranger on the internet who goes by the moniker ScreamingVegetable edited Tim Burton's 1989 version of Batman into a silent film. And you can catch the first 8 minutes here. Viewers are calling it a masterpiece and the best thing they've seen on the internet all day. On the subject of Batman, I'm also a fan of the very fall-appropriate Batman Unburied, an immersive podcast in the genre "superhero audio drama", like a psychological thriller featuring Winston Duke of Black Panther and Us as the voice of Bruce Wayne. So there you are, Batman, one of the most enduring characters of the modern world, without sound and fully reliant on sound. Isn't it wonderful to step outside media as you know it into new (or old) ways to make sense of stories through your senses?

The Hocus Pocus cottage is real!

And you can book it on Airbnb starting October 12, if you happen to be in the Danvers, Massachusetts vicinity. Coinciding with the release of Hocus Pocus 2, the whole home is recreated to look and feel like the Sanderson sisters' cottage—although I don't think the black cat is included. Check out also this essay by Shirley Li on the wonderful weirdness that is the cultural phenomenon of Hocus Pocus.

Here's what Vogue covers used to look like

Fashion magazine covers have stuck to the same style for decades now. The biggest change was when cover stars shifted from models to celebrities to influencers, but they've pretty much looked the same for a while. Of course, before photography, fashion magazines were illustrated and this is a fascinating deep dive into the golden age of illustration. The only question is: what's next? Perhaps something like (below) but make it fashion:

This song sounds like English, but is nonsense

Every once in a while, I like to shock myself back into reality. Something just so ridiculous it brings you out of the somewhat hazy and furious state of swipe tap click swipe. This music video features a 1972 song by Italian singer Adriano Celentano, who wrote the song to mimic how English sounds without actually meaning anything. Imagine if this survived in a future where archaeologists are unaware of his intent and end up spending years trying to decipher the meaning of these words. I sometimes wonder how many other things have stumped us only because they weren't meant to mean anything at all, perhaps like this 600 year old manuscript.

Love stories, brought to you by Valentino

I, just like many others, are having a bit of a Valentino appreciation moment. It started with Anne Hathaway's Andy Sachs circa 2022 Barbie moment, then with this colour-matching video, and with the takeover of Valentino pink all over fashion month (see below). Other lesser known projects caught my attention, like this text-only advertising campaign, in which Valentino invited 17 authors from around the world, including Douglas Coupland and Emily Ratajkowski, to write 17 micro love stories. The whole series is worth a read, particularly Notes on Love by Murathan Mungan.

.txt Messages


High Dangerous
is what my sons call the flowers—
purple, white, electric blue—
pom-pomming bushes all along
the beach town streets.
I can’t correct them into
hydrangeas, or I won’t.
We’re almost to the beach,
and High dangerous! my sons
yell again, their joy in having
spotted something beautiful,
and called it what it is.
—Catherine Pierce, "High dangerous"

Tiny Wonderful Things is brought to you by Ana and (the) Wondermachine.