My first published journalism was a CD review of a single by Ed Alleyne-Johnson. It was in the Manx Independent. I got the job by pitching them a regular music review and pitching the local independent music store the idea of a regular free feature.
Since then I’ve done 150 word film reviews for a local paper, written about ghost stories for the Guardian and the moral choice inherent in Captain America’s role in Age of Ultron for Vex Mosaic. I’ve reviewed comics, books, TV shows, films, games, RPGs, I think I did an art show once too. I’ve sat in front of countless thousands of hours of culture and tried not only to understand them but explain if they’re worth it to audiences ranging from five to thousands.
I’ve loved every single minute of it. Pop culture is a never ending fire hose of content, a puzzle we always solve but never quite finish. It’s also the kind of writing most prone to being done really badly. Pop culture criticism can, far too often, be an excuse to grandstand instead of doing the single job it’s designed to do; help an audience decide what to spend their time on. This track, I’ll talk about my approach to working as a critic and how it differs from many.