Army Entertainment Liaison Office: Watch More TV! The Freedom Of Our Nation Depends On Your Contribution!
from the the-only-place-you'll-find-a-recommendation-for-the-'Battleship'-mov dept
A massive (1300+ pages) collection of US Army Entertainment Liaison documents pertaining to the military branch's relationship with movies, TV shows and videogames has been liberated by SpyCulture. Within its pages are the military's assessments of various pop culture works, as well as official non-responses to more controversial works.
Generally speaking, the US Army Entertainment Liaison office believes most of what crosses its desk furthers the Army's interests. There are lots and lots of supportive assessments contained in the document, with the most common being "Supports Building Resilience" -- a phrase that covers everything from military-friendly documentaries to American Idol. Another popular assessment is "Supports Modernizing the Force," something the Liaison Office has applied to blockbuster franchises like The Avengers.
It especially has some love for an unnamed Activision videogame with a pro-military edge, even though it did express its reservations about China being depicted as a military foe. (Apparently, it's only acceptable to consider China a cyber-foe...)
However, it was less than pleased with a FOIA request from Kotaku covering the same territory, which it felt would "jeopardize" its ability to enter into new partnerships with videogame production companies.
On more controversial topics -- like the Oscar-winning Hurt Locker -- it chose to remain officially silent.
LTC [redacted] was interviewed by the Australian Broadcasting Corp's morning radio program and the New York Times on the Oscar nominated "The Hurt Locker." While reporters tried to bring the Army into the fray of the ongoing debate, we kept our messages broadly focused on why we support or not support film projects, and our mission of this office "to educate the American public through entertainment media."A better tack would have been to point out to the press that Hurt Locker's depiction of military action was about as credible as 2012's Battleship, a movie the Liaison Office found to be a Pretty Good Thing overall in terms of pro-military positivity ("Supports Broadens Understanding and Advocacy").
The office must be commended for its rarely-flagging cheerfulness. Even reality TV bottom feeders have a silver lining.
Ghost Hunters – Mr [redacted]West Point Academy: Come for the intense discipline. Stay for the hauntings.
SyFy will highlight the academy on one of their Ghost Hunters episodes and feature Quarters 100 (Superintendent’s House) and Scott Barracks. Both have had stories of supposed spiritual activity. This program draws 2.5-3 million viewers for a first time airing and they travel across the country and internationally to some of the most famous and historical locations in the world. While not typical, it allows West Point the opportunity to reach a unique and untapped audience for this special segment.
Rather charmingly, the office also makes sure top brass stay abreast of its Facebook page's traffic.
There are also some notes detailing a visit from the Inspector General in regards to any participation the office may have offered during the production of Zero Dark Thirty.
Representatives from the DoD IG visited OCPA-LA on 30 April. The purpose of the visit was a spiral increment of the DoD ID investigation into DoD’s support of the film titled “Zero Dark Thirty”. The US Army did not support the movie “Zero Dark Thirty”. Specifically the DoD IG’s focus was on DoD Agencies and Military Services regarding the release of DoD classified and/or sensitive information to the media. The questions asked by the DoD IG team were about procedures and policies concerning the interaction between DoD employees and the media when the subject is concerning DoD sensitive and/or classified information or programs. OCPA-LA operates by the public affairs tenant “practice security at the source.” This is most applicable to the US Army’s support of documentary films. OCPALA does not have any classified material nor do we have the means to store classified material. The DoD IG team appeared to be satisfied with the procedures and policies implemented by OCPA-LA.Elsewhere in the report, the G.I. Joe movies "support maintaining our combat edge," Michael Bay gives the office a first look at the Transformers 3 ("an apolitical blockbuster") script to ensure the movie can be all it can be ("expressed his desire for us to 'help (him) make it better'") and a Nicholas Sparks' movie becomes a way for the Army to
The main character, played by Channing Tatum, exudes the Army Values and honorably and realistically portrays an Army Soldier to a predominantly female audience. The reviews have been very positive especially among women.If you're planning on wading through the document, be aware there's a lot of duplication as pending projects are carried forward month-to-month with only a very occasional update. That being said, it's a fun read that meshes pop culture with jingoism in a way that almost makes it seem that there's no better way to support the troops than sitting on the couch in front of your TV.