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Thursday, 14 March 2013

Evidence that pie is an integral part of contemporary culture

There can never be enough pie in contemporary culture, and it's good to see people recognising this.  Recently, we've had 'The Life of Pie', a gripping tale about a boy stranded in the Pacific with only a Cornish pasty for company which he eventually manages to tame, thank goodness.  These traditional pastry products have a reputation for unpredictability.  I really enjoyed this when I saw it at the cinema, because it was in 3D, and there's nothing so thrilling as seeing a flake of crumbly pastry swimming rapidly towards the middle of your forehead.

Everyone loves a bit of Bond (that old double-croissant) and even more people like a bit of pastry with their Bond, which is why I think 'Piefall' was such a hit.  And now we all know what the M stands for; whether your preference is beef, chicken or ham, M is such an essential ingredient.


The best way to cook a good pie is in a traditional oven and this is why I was pleased to see how well 'Aga' did in the BAFTA awards.  Preparation of the inside of the pie is also important, however, and on this topic I really enjoyed the film version of Tolkein's famous story about characters from Middle Earth: 'The Hob'.

I've been re-reading some of the old classic books, too.  (Get me with my cultural explorations!)  Austen's 'Pie and Prejudice' is a fabulous story with its main themes reflected in the title: those old human instincts - an excessive desire for pastry and a leaning towards judging others.  Golding's 'Lord of the Pies', too, with its use of pastry goods as a symbol for the deterioration of modern society, is a great story.  And I'm loving Daniel Defoe's 'Robinson Crust', a tale of a man's survival on an isolated island, threatened as he is by cannibals who'd like nothing more than to put him between two layers of pastry.

Some of the plotlines are a little flaky, I have to say.

Fran was also looking forward to her visit to the theatre to see 'Pie-malion', the classic
George Bernard Shaw play about a lower-class girl who pronounced 'pastry' like 'pie-stry'
thereby proving herself unfit for the human race.  



20 comments:

  1. Lovely!

    War and Pies is hefty but rewarding.

    Btw I loved the Life of Pi ( book). Havent seen the film yet.

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    1. Yes, War and Pies! A big fat book, that one!

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  2. Finally, someone who can explain "The Life of Pie" to me. I haven't seen the movie yet, but I read the book and didn't understand that the tiger was a symbol for pastry.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. I admit, it's profound, the pastry/tiger thing, but it's definitely what the author intended.

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  3. Maybe you'd like to consider "Catcher in the Pie", "Winnie the Pie" and "Pienocchio"? Being a vegetarian, I don't like to suggest anything about Peter Rabbit pie... .

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    1. Brilliant suggestions! I really really want to know all about Winnie the Pie now. Someone write this.

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  4. Not to say "Eat Pie, Love" (an answer to all life's problems).

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  5. How about Jane Austen's much under-cooked work, Piesuasion? Or perhaps Piegrim's Progress, by the chap with bun in his surname?

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    1. Piegrim's Progress - presumably it's the lack of available pastry goods that leads him into the Slough of Despair, then.

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  6. I always liked the great War films - 'The Longest Pie', 'Cold Pie in Alex', 'Reach for the Pie', 'Bridge over the River Pie', 'The Cruel Pie', etc. The part played by the Catering Corps (the Pie 'n' Ears) can't be overestimated.

    But, to be fair, I should also mention the subversive anti-pie epic: 'Battle of the Bulge'.

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  7. "Pies like us " springs to mind though my kids when younger enjoyed a good helping of " Pie Kids " ( and I enjoyed a helping of Antonio Bandarras )
    "Tinker Taylor Soldier Pie" ? a multi layered complex pie.

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    1. Very funny. I love getting you all to try and think of your own!

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  8. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Pie is one of my favourites... such a meaty storyline.

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  9. How about a double Bond bill of 'Piefall' and 'Live and Let Pie'?
    Anna May x

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    1. 'Live and Let Pie' should be a mantra!

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  10. I can't imagine where you get your piedeas from! ;-)

    More Bond films:'The Pie Who Loved Me', 'For Your Pies Only', 'Pie Another Day', 'Tomorrow Never Pies'.

    I have an extensive collection of pienography:

    'Clash Of The Pie-tans' (Drama-documentary with chefs arguing over optimimum crust colours based on cooking times and temperatures)
    'Cinema Pieradiso'
    'The Pie Of The Werewolf'
    'Pie Wolf'
    'Pie Hard' (Bruce Willis attempts to save a top secret pie from being over-cooked)
    'Pie Hard With A Vengeance' (the sequel in which Bruce Willis attempts to save a top secret pie from being seriously over-cooked)
    'Pies Wide Open'
    'Pies Wide Shut' (sequel in which Tom Cruise rememembers to make pastry lids this time)
    'The Hills Have Pies'
    'Freaky Pie Day'
    'Pie Day The 13th'
    'The Pies Of Others' (film about the East German Stasi pie confiscation regime).
    'Pies And Dolls'
    'Pie School Musical 4' (the fat kids).
    'Pie Society'
    'Pie, Robot' (savoury sci-fi)
    'Secrets And Pies'
    'The Long Good Pie Day' (in which Bob Hoskins ate them all!)
    'Pietanic' (tragic tale of an 'unsinkable' ocean liner, which hits an iceburg at which point the White Star Line admit the hull of the ship is made entirely from pastry. Based on a true story).
    'Pie Freedom' (Meat and potato pies escape from oppression)
    'Pie Plains Drifter'
    'The Pie And The Mighty'
    'Pie Noon' (lunchtime in the wild west)
    'Jesus Pies Superstar' (based on an untrue story).
    'The Spider And The Pie'
    'The Pie Who Came In From The Cold' (and ended up piping hot!)
    'Shallow Gravy' (documentary investigating the dubious quality of Tesco 'value' pies)
    'Pies Of The Planet Of The Apes (even chimps love 'em!)

    And of course, the all time classic: 'Sex, Pies And Videotape'

    :-)

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    1. You definitely win the effort merit! 'The Pie Who Came in from the Cold' is classic and, I have to say, inspiered. And, yes, I did spot your atheist sideswipe, .... I can only respond with piety.

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  11. I will never be able to look at a pastry in the pie again without chuckling at all of these !

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