So it’s not surprising to see men who were raised on cartoonish images of the fictional John Rambo taking out more Soviet soldiers in two hours than the Afghan mujahedeen did in a decade show an appetite for characters who tend to fix even big problems with room-clearing brawls, monosyllabic wisecracks and large-caliber firearms. ...On a slightly different angle, John Harris in the Guardian argues that popular culture is increasingly defined by an unhealthy refusal to let go of the past fueled by technology that refuses to allow us to forget it.

Essays in papers on both sides of the Atlantic try to shine light on the resurgence of nostalgic pop culture. An article by Alex Williams in the New York Times considers why we're seeing the reappearance of 80s tough guy icons like Rambo, Chuck Norris and Hulk Hogan in popular culture. He says that at a time when the US faces new problems, the return of the ’80s action hero suggests that some Americans, particularly men, are looking to revel in the vestigial pleasures of older times and seemingly simpler ways:

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