Below is a version of the paper I delivered last week at SCMS 2013, on the panel 'So Bad It's Good' (alongside excellent talks by Richard McCulloch, Nessa Johnston, and Phil Oppenheim). It is based on a much longer, currently unpublished piece I have co-authored with James Zborowski.
- James MacDowell
This line is one of many in The Room which seem to constitute not simply a failure to embody a convention, but something more strange. Whereas a failure to establish whether a scene takes place at day or night is a conventional failures we can readily critique, this ‘failure’ is far more mysterious. Rather than mere ineptitude, what seems important about this moment that it is so idiosyncratic - at once bafflingly weighty, inappropriate to the conversation at hand, and yet indicative of a kind of fraught emotional logic. As such it permits the possibility of imagining that only this writer/director, Wiseau, would or could write and deliver such an incomprehensible line in this way, and that it might thus offer a small insight into the unusual way Tommy Wiseau’s mind works.