Episode 130. Nature Calls: Eden Lake (2008) and Backcountry (2014)

Pack your bags and your partner because this episode leaves the comforts of civilized society far behind. In this episode we unpack the need for serenity, the heritage of toxic masculinity, and why a bear might actually make a great boyfriend. 


Eden Lake. Dir. James Watkins, 2008. 
Backcountry. Dir. Adam MacDonald, 2014. 


Overall Crime Down 44% Since 1995. The Guardian article that pushes back against conservative narratives. 
Gangs and Children. A study on the impetus for youth to join gangs and why.
The Gated Community Mentality. Rich Benjamin’s piece on the groupthink that emerges from the gated community lifestyle.
David Mech’s website – the author of incel bible The Wolf: Ecology and Behavior of an Endangered Species addresses the widespread misuse of the term “Alpha.”
From the “Cosmo Quiz” to Quizilla to Buzzfeed… what’s next?. The Smithsonian Magazine looks back at the history of quizzes. 


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2 thoughts on “Episode 130. Nature Calls: Eden Lake (2008) and Backcountry (2014)

  1. Another winning episode that makes me want to view these two films that I’ve not yet seen. I appreciate the tie-ins with toxic masculinity, wolves, the “alpha myth,” and the Bear or Man challenge (I too would choose “bear”). I also appreciated the tx of masculine thinking that the world (women specifically) owe them something. Well done!

  2. FictionIsntReal says:

    The environmental issue is not reducible to the question of corporate profits. Bolivia electing a socialist leader didn’t result in a reduction in emissions, because the working class Evo Morales is supposed to represent all benefit from economic growth. Communist China is also not going to pursue “degrowth” for environmental reasons. https://www.thedailyworld.com/opinion/noah-smith-dumping-capitalism-wont-save-the-planet/

    I recently moved from a big city to one of its suburbs because it was no longer worth paying downtown rents when I wasn’t getting the benefit of being located close to work. Matt Yglesias has written about that particular city being in danger with the rise of remote work.

    Backcountry was one of the most disappointing movies I’ve watched as a result of this podcast. I guess I was expecting a horror movie, but the horror elements with the bear didn’t come until way too late. Prior to that I was just stuck with characters I’d rather not be watching. I didn’t realize until you mentioned it that the same writer/director also made Pyewacket, which was SO much better.

    You’ve got the “incel” discourse about “alphas” backwards: they are complaining about NOT being “Chad” alphas. When Elliot Rodger went on a shooting rampage, he disproportionately shot men that he viewed as Chads, and to a lesser extent “Stacies”.

    Food chains are disrupted regardless of whether hunting is for “sport” rather than “sustenance”. Anthropologically modern humans reaching the Americas caused a mass extinction of large mammals (except on islands where they didn’t reach), and that’s not because indigenous Americans were “consumerist”.

    The boyfriends aren’t sidelined “at the same point” in both movies. I was looking at the runtime for Backcountry and the bear attack was in roughly the last half-hour, in what we might call the beginning of the third act. Steve from Eden Lake gets stuck in the car at roughly the end of the first act.

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