The Oberlin Review

Off the Cuff: Melissa Harris and Christian Bolles, Editors-in-Chief

Sydney Allen and Nathan Carpenter

May 11, 2018

College seniors Melissa Harris and Christian Bolles are the outgoing Editors-in-Chief of The Oberlin Review. Harris has been involved with the Review since her first semester at Oberlin, when she started out her journalism career as a staff writer. Since then she has worked as a Review Production Editor and News Editor and has interned for publications such as The Chronicle Telegram and Homeland Security Today. Bolles got involved his sophomore year at Oberlin and served as an Arts & Culture Editor before his tenure as EIC. Bolles is most known for his movie reviews. They were interviewed by the incoming Editors-in-Chief, College junior Sydney Allen and College sophomore Nathan Carpenter. This interview has be...

A stone-faced Kratos crosses the peak of a mountain with his son, Atreus, in Santa Monica Studio’s PlayStation 4 masterpiece

“God of War” Wrestles with Violence, Wins

May 11, 2018

“Don’t be sorry. Be better.” This harsh lesson, uttered in actor Christopher Judge’s gravelly baritone, can be considered a thesis statement for the excellent God of War, Sony Santa Monica’s latest PlayStation 4 exclusive release and the fifth mainline entry in the controversial series. Some might have looked at Kratos, a Spartan demigod, and seen an irredeemable murderer with nowhere left to go but Hell, but director Cory Barlog had a vision of his own. A mainstay of the first two games...

“Infinity War” Shatters Expectations, Box Office Records, Hearts

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

May 4, 2018

Editor’s note: This review contains major spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War. You can — and really should — catch it tonight at the Apollo Theatre instead of reading ahead. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Over the course of the previous 18 films, Marvel charted the rise of a cast of super-powered characters who all now share a pop-culture pedestal. To many, they may as well be real — in a changing world, their heroism has provided a welcome source of stability. Every year, fans rely on a handful of new stories, each invested in illustrating and protecting a shared sense of humanity. Recently, Marvel has used their considerable platform to set a new bar for representation in blockbuster filmmaking with the wildly suc...

Lord Huron Launches Sound Skyward in “Vide Noir”

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

April 27, 2018

Editor’s note: This review mentions death and suicide. Imagine an oversaturated ’60s television screen broadcasting a garbled advertisement for the services of a fortune teller. This approximates the feeling of listening to Lord Huron’s latest album, Vide Noir. This is not an analogy pulled from the void — the album’s first single, “Ancient Names (Part I)” literally stars a fortune teller, complete with crystal ball. Her domain is, however, just one stop on the nameless protagonist’s journey through time and space, which will take him from life to death and back again in this narrative-driven concept album. Whereas Lord Huron’s first two albums — Lonesome Dreams (featuring radio hit “Ends of the Earth...

Audrey Horning, Professor of Anthropology.

Audrey Horning, Anthropologist

April 13, 2018

Audrey Horning is an Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at the College of William & Mary. Her career has spanned from the directorship of an archaeological dig at the colonial site of Jamestown to extensive work studying and chronicling the relationship between culture and conflict in Northern Ireland. A fellow at the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice at Queen’s University Belfast, Horning came to Oberlin Wednesday for a talk funde...

Cooperative Game Will Make Players Long for “A Way Out”

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

March 30, 2018

Editor’s note: This review contains light spoilers for Josef Fares’ A Way Out. “If you don’t like it, you can break my legs.” These were the words of Swedish game developer Josef Fares in anticipation of his new title, A Way Out. The two-player cooperative game requires players to work together to escape from prison as convicts named Leo and Vincent before hunting down the man who wronged them both. With its unique use of a split-screen mechanic that favors one player’s vision over the other depending on their current situation, A Way Out’s conceit is brilliant. One wonders, then, whether it’s a greater shame for players or for Fares himself that the game is a steaming pile of horse manure. Fares’ be...

“Annihilation” Brings Weird Fiction to Big-Budget Filmmaking

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

March 9, 2018

Editor’s note: This article contains mentions of depression and self-harm. “That is not dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die.” Among all of H.P. Lovecraft’s mind-bending prose, this sentence may come closest to a thesis statement for weird fiction, the genre his writing popularized. The word “weird” seems to exist in the uncanny periphery of our understanding of the world. Weird fiction, then, is gothic horror written to instill a terror that lingers far longer than any work of pure horror. Toward the close of the first act of Alex Garland’s Annihilation, five women stand before a shifting wall, reminiscent of the polychrome texture of a bubble which may as well be an e...

Typhoon’s Fourth Album Boasts Wrenching Narrative, Charged Politics

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

February 9, 2018

“Listen. Of everything that you’re about to lose, this will be the most painful.” This sentence is spoken with slight variations — not sung — exactly three times in eight-piece indie rock band Typhoon’s latest album, Offerings. The words bear the distinct voice of frontman Kyle Morton — tinged with desperation, approaching tears. It’s an appropriate affectation given the trauma of a severe teenage case of Lyme disease that led to multiple organ failures. Here, this history lends Morton a deft touch for handling the possibility of death with unique aromanticism. That sensibility is lucky for listeners; across the album’s nearly 70-minute sprawl, there is consolation in the quiet moments, when the swellin...

Salary Freeze Incites Faculty Concern

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

December 8, 2017

Editor’s Note: The letter referenced in this article has been published in full under “Letters to the Editors” in this issue’s Opinions section. As the Board of Trustees convenes this weekend, freezes to non-union salaries remain a key concern among faculty and staff. The freezes were instituted last year and maintained as a result of a $5 million immediate budget deficit and long-term structural deficit disclosed to faculty and staff June 14. After the announcement of the freezes, James Monroe Professor of Politics Chris Howell and Nathan A. Greenberg Professor of Classics Kirk Ormand wrote a letter July 17 — obtained by the Review this week — in response to Chair of the Board of Trustees Chris Canavan...

Title IX Coordinator Rebecca Mosely

OTC: Rebecca Mosely, Title IX Coordinator

December 8, 2017

Rebecca Mosely serves as the Title IX coordinator and director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion at Oberlin College. She develops and administers policy on discrimination and harassment and handles issues concerning equity policy and concerns. Before taking on this role a year and a half ago, Mosely served in the Office of Residential Education for 11 years. She earned her bachelor’s degree in French education and a master’s degree in student affairs and higher education from The Ohio State Un...

Weinstein Scandal Representative of Deeper Dynamics

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

November 10, 2017

“They knew.” That’s a mantra oft-repeated by the public in response to the cascade of celebrities who have denounced their colleagues following a cataclysmic domino effect of assault allegations made over the past month. Accusations of harassment, rape, and all-around creepiness leveled at Hollywood director Harvey Weinstein were the first cracks in the industry’s golden façade — which has now shattered beneath the weight of hundreds of similar claims aimed at other titans of that breeding ground of fame and misfortune. In the hugely disturbing wake of this scandal, sharp words have been exchanged, tears have been shed, and giants have fallen — but the question at the tip of everyone’s tongues, right ...

Professor Steven Ellis, Roman archaeologist

On the Record with Steven Ellis

November 10, 2017

Roman archaeologist and professor Steven Ellis of the University of Cincinnati delivered four lectures on the university’s ongoing excavations of the Porta Stabia neighborhood at Pompeii, of which he is director, as part of the Martin Classical Lectures series. The lectures took place in the Craig Lecture Hall on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and today. Ellis has done fieldwork in Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal, France, Morocco, and Algeria, and is the author of The Making of Pompeii: Studies in ...

Established 1874.