I am a Popular Culture Freak

Essay by Luke Foster

“I never really got nightmares from movies. In fact, I recall my father saying when I was three years old that I would be scared, but I never was.”

Tim Burton

Edward Scissor Hands drawing by Tim Burton

I am an absolute popular culture freak including popular music such as rock and roll and pop and Hollywood movies via Netflix and Disney Plus and television shows comic books and novels of all kinds.

Every day while I walk on the beach, I listen to music via YouTube on my I Phone.

My favourite music to listen to while beach walking is the best of Creedance Clearwater Revival, best of U2 1980-1990, the best of Katy Perry and the best of Regina Spektor. I also have a huge cd collection that’s in my garage/studio now in the unpacking stage and also have a big collection of off-beat vinyl records that I listen to while drawing or writing. I am listening to a Dope Lemon record now while writing.  I recently just joined Spotify but need a wi-fi speaker for better sound quality.

“I used to love Kurt Cobain, when he was telling people we’re a pop band. People would laugh, they thought of it as good old ironic Kurt. But he wasn’t being ironic”


I sometimes watch three movies in one night on Net Flix on my MacBook Air but I have bought a huge 70-inch Google smart tv but I am waiting for a two-seat sofa to arrive at my new apartment before I set it up in my tiny living room.

A lot of my favourite movies are by the director Tim Burton who often works with my favourite actor Johnny Depp. They are Hollywood movies but they are offbeat. My favourite from this partnership is Edward Scissor Hands.

Another of my favourite Johnny Depp movies is What’s Eating Gilbert Grape that co starred a young Leonardo De Caprio. He plays the role in a very understated way.

My favourite popular culture novelist is the Japanese author Haruki Murakami and his books which I have all of them cross over contemporary Japanese culture and American pop culture that has had a huge influence on Japanese culture in recent decades. One of his books called Norwegian Wood after the Beatles song by that name was made into a fantastic movie that I saw in a small cinema in Byron Bay.

“Stories lie deep in our souls. Stories lie so deep at the bottom of our hearts that they can bring people together on the deepest level. When I write a novel, I go into such depths.”

 Haruki Murakami

I grew up reading comics such as Tin Tin, Asterix and other comics such as the Swamp Thing but in my late twenties I came more interested in alternative comics such as Eightball by Daniel Clowes, Robert Crumb and Julie Doucet’s dirty Plotte. I like underground comics as they are edgy and deal more with real life than superhero comics. But I do like the superhero genre but more in movie though with movies such as the X-men.

 Old comics are quite collectable now

In conclusion I think popular culture isn’t just important for recreational down time but it’s very creatively inspirational for me with my art particularly my drawing in the same way its inspirational for my favourite artist the Japanese contemporary artist Yoshitomo Nara.

Yoshitomo Nara drawing inspired by the punk band the Ramones