Oh now what the fuck - Billy Mays is dead? I only got to know of his wondrous work a couple of months ago, and now he's gone? That stinks. Stinks of cat urine.
The human race's combined volume must've gone down a few dozen notches because of this. We'll barely be any louder than all the mice in the world if Brian Blessed ever becomes mute.
Watched The Bourne Ultimatum.
As I said, I liked Supremacy, but it was more story-driven and the fact Bourne had no partner kind of made it lose a human touch the original had, and I kind of forgot everything in it just minutes after watching; but I enjoyed it.
Ultimatum has explosions, car crashes, intense chases through an Arabian village, and packs more action into its slightly shorter run-time, so I'm afraid to say it's a no-brainer that I really enjoyed it. I'm sorry - you could give me the greatest, most through-provoking story of all time, but unless it had two assassins trying to kill each other in a bathroom with shaving utensils, it's probably not going to earn my utmost admiration. I'm a shallow son of a bitch.
There's definitely a more human side to Ultimatum. The beginning has him assisting a British journalist in avoiding potential assassins, demonstrating this hyper-aware mechanical precision in taking care of them all either through beating them up or sending them down the wrong trail. One strangely-hilarious highlight is making it appear the journalist is talking to a source at a bus stop and then walking away, prompting the poor guy to get drugged and dragged away despite being an innocent bystander. The sequence doesn't last long when the journalist pusses out and gets shot in the head, but it's a fun throwback to the vibe of the first movie. He does cooperate with a female operative from the previous two movies, the reason behind the Arabian village chase, but she's not exactly Ms. Personality - the same result could've been gotten by carrying around a rectangle of cardboard with a >:( face drawn on.
The amount of crashing and bumping during the obligatory car chase really reminded me of The Blues Brothers. I seriously need to watch that again, and maybe sit down and watch the sequel properly instead of only flicking it on for the humongous car pile-up.
Also just to keep it archived for future generations - Galvatron was actually positive about something new related to Transformers!
I admit I don't think I really paid attention to the swearing. Probably because I just curse so damn much myself, but also probably because the uses I remember helped make particularly amusing lines even better ("it's like the frickin' house o' horrors around here!"), though since there were so many kids in the theatre I guess it would've been something to look out for. Ugly robots are a given and I'm well aware that they do 360º shots simply because it makes it an extra challenge to animate so they look smug about the work they did, but fo sho, slow-motion was overused. Notice how most of it was used at the end when Sam and Mikaela were running, with Mikaela in particular highlight, during a part of the movie where she's not wearing much and constantly falling over?
... I'm the only one who paid particular attention to that, aren't I?
I'm probably never going to shut up about the damn movie. I was finished with the first movie in a single entry, and the second one has gone on for three? Seriously people, if you don't want me talking about it then shut up about the damn thing. It's a big expensive movie made by someone who emphasises that he likes "awesome" things and has made a career out of blowing shit up and thrusting awkward love stories into ridiculous settings. Of course it's going to be a disgrace to an artistic media. Let it be!
I went clothes shopping with a lady friend, and I actually voluntarily bought a shirt with buttons, and not just to look fancy for a funeral or whatever. I might be going mad!
I also watched The Creature From The Black Lagoon, which was an enjoyable two hours (the film's only 76 minutes, but there's a great feature covering all three movies and their production on the DVD).
It's interesting how a lot of the old monster movies deal with, well, monsters, but who happen to be suffering typical human flaws like being love-stricken and lonely. We all know about Frankenstein, and one of the guy's in the documentary said the creature, in human terms, is basically returning to his home and finding ten or so people just looking around, being nosey and invading his space, and he's a bit >:U about that, but also happens to become infatuated with the token woman. Who, by 1950s movie traditions, is a total burden and does nothing but cause hassle for everyone around her. Seriously! She's almost always within close range whenever someone gets the axe, and the only person who doesn't die is a doctor, who instead gets seriously burned and mangled and spends the rest of a film in a full body-cast, covering even his mouth. The only good thing she did was notice the monster before anyone else, prompting a scream to alert the others who actually knew what to do when encountering a sea monster (which is not hide behind a tree with the girth of a pencil). It's pretty embarrassing. And also kind of sad, because it's only one asshole who actually harms the creature by shooting it, but it's only at the end that he gets axed; meanwhile everyone but him is being strangled to death. Poor guys.
Meanwhile, in modern monster movies the monsters are all rrargh inhuman irredeemable beast out for braaaaaaains!! and the final survivor is usually a woman. What does that imply? I know little about modern monster movies, but I know for sure that if Jurassic Park becomes real, it should only allow women and children. No casualties will take place!
I'm also really amused by much hooplah everyone is kicking up over Revenge of the Fallen. I mean, I essentially unanimously praised it because it delivered what I expected - giant robots fucking shit up. Sure, no doubt it would be great to have a Transformers movie that actually uses the franchise to tell a better story or have better characterisation (or at least as an excuse to bust out some more Stan Bush power ballads), but when Michael Bay's in charge I can't say a drawn-out explosion-fest is going to be a surprise. But the fact some people are calling it the worst movie ever made seems a bit wacky. It's Michael Bay. What were you expecting?
I've gotta agree that the humongous budget could've gone towards something like world peace or whatever, but what are the chances of that?
Michael Jackson died. =(
Also, Play.com has a load of Twilight crap on preorder. This would otherwise be totally un-noteworthy (I mean, I haven't even talked about Twilight before, much less read or seen it or know much beyond the frightening fangirl nonsense it generates, and sexy vampires is just a stupid concept, imo), but it has the unfortunate predicament of having some absurd products. Well, one absurd product. Namely... fuckin' Twilight bandages. Like, sticky plasters for when you graze your knee. With Twilight imagery.
I'd like to make a crack about it allowing a change of mind should someone decide to slit their wrists, but I'm sure the entire internet has done that already. And joking about death after going =( over Mike's passing would probably cause mood whiplash. I have enough of that already!
On a brighter note...
I'd like to shake this guy's hand.
Scary-Crayon has updated with a guest piece of mine - Jungle Panda! I wrote 1703 words in non-stop two and a half hours, so naturally it's full of waffling and tangents and bizarre thoughts, but the figure seriously needs some internet recognition. I really wish I dug out my TMNT Donatello figure, though. That would've been a neat crossover. The General Writings page has been updated accordingly to include it. As always, check out Wes' stuff - I'm already in love with the Grim Reaper action figure! I'm surprised that despite my love of skeletons, I haven't got a plastic one in my possession. That must be rectified.
Funny story - my totally love-gushing review of Revenge of the Fallen turned Wes away from wanting to see the film! He was almost considering it, but once he heard that the robots were still underdeveloped hi-then-bye racial stereotypes, he decided not to. Though I'm sure if I mentioned that John Turturro strips to his thong and an RC car humps Megan Fox's leg, one of those would've been a definite turn-off. Or maybe the latter would be a turn-on. I'm not up to date with what people consider sexy these days. I mean, remember my girls-with-moustaches comment? Case in point.
Seriously, not every girl would look good with a moustache. I drew a variety of moustaches on Megan Fox and it wasn't a pretty sight. But one day I'll find convincing evidence, I assure you!
Why not go for three Transformers related blog entries in a short space of time? I mean, who'll care, right?
I've had Universe Hot Shot and Cheetor for a few days now. I was keen to get Hot Shot, but Cheetor I simply got to sell. I got them for the crazily-cheap price of £5 each. Seriously! It pays to check out international auctions and getting some other junk with combined shipping to get a good deal.
I had high hopes for Hot Shot. It's a wonderfully unique design, and the original toy never did it justice, and all the new designs after the Armada version just looked crap, to be honest. Theoretically with modern design it should be better, but instead just opens up more problems.
In theory, Hot Shot is loaded with articulation - his arms swivel and swing outwards, his elbows rotate and are double jointed, his head is ball-jointed, his hips are on swivelling ratchets and can rotate, the knees bend and rotate, and the feet are on flexible hinges. I'm personally amazed that he's loaded with such flexibility but the only ball-joint is for his head! It's incredible stuff. The problem is that he's got far too much crap floating around.
See his back? He has two car halves there. The original toy had that as one big chunk, making for a distinctive-looking backpack (though it did restrict his arms to doing nothing more than swivelling in a circle). The new toy, for whatever reason, just has them... hovering there. They can't peg together or sit comfortably anywhere. They're on flexible rods and you can safely pluck them off and set them aside, but that essentially removes the primary car element from his robot mode. But if they are there, they are not going to be happy in any position. Either they crash into each other and look ugly, or they sit on top of the shoulders and completely obstruct all decent articulation in them. See, the shoulders have the halves of his spoilers on them. I have no idea why they bothered. Had they folded away or been included on those back pieces, the arm problem could've been solved, but apparently someone thought it'd be a great idea to keep them on there. It's stupid. The leg articulation is unhindered, but when the upper body is more or less restricted to just looking angrily with his arms at his sides, there's not much point.
Also, despite the fact they look like regular peg holes, Hot Shot's pegs are a fraction of a millimetre too small to hold any Transformers guns. Seriously. It's not even the kind of "too small" where a bit of pressure can solve it, no gun can fit in there. It is mind-bendingly absurd. It doesn't help that Hasbro cheaped out on the guns they actually developed for him, being restricted to only the Japanese release; Hot Shot's only accessory is his Mini-Con partner, Jolt. That means Hot Shot is unarmed, and also cannot gesture very well.
Jolt is pretty shit. He's less articulated than the original toy, offers no combining gimmick, and for the love of god, when will there be a transforming helicopter that does something with the tail? On most figures it isn't too bad, but on Jolt its placement between his legs is very unfortunate. A waste of plastic.
It's nice seeing Hot Shot getting some attention, since he's one of my favourite designs from the Unicron Trilogy (I suppose it doesn't help that most designs from Energon onwards just seem to be fodder for repainting into older characters), but I think they just got too ambitious and forgot that they're trying to make a toy here, not just a complicated piece of transforming engineering. A for effort.
Cheetor is a fantastic beast mode. The original Cheetor was a big fat brick in cheetah mode, but a loveably chubby robot. This one is a beautifully sculpted and articulated beast mode, but the robot mode is a frickin' hunchback. It's obviously not pictured because it's terrible, but this impromptu hunchback bipedal cheetah butler mode is much more appealing. I mean, the beast mode isn't flawless, having an absurdly huge chest, but the fact I haven't seen a real cheetah toy pack in such exquisite articulation shows how great it is.
Pity the robot mode is ugly. It attempts to be show-accurate, but the head is more horrifying than anything, and instead of trying to recreate more functional weaponry, it gives him some shuriken and a tail whip. The shuriken are a neat piece of engineering, but the tail whip... every time a Transformer beast uses its tail as a whip, I cry. See, the original Cheetor just made his whole rump into a gun, with the tail hiding the cannon. This one doesn't have as much mass to spare, but surely they could've just had the tail fold away or something? You're just shaming yourself by dubbing it a whip, guys. I can't take off my dog's tail and use it as a whip, because it merely has all the strength and force of a dog's tail. Plucking it off does not turn it into a whip.
I hope Cyclonus is good. If only I could frickin' find him, though. Stores here are still wallowing on stock we've had since December, and all the online UK stores have no Cyclonuses for sale. =(
Someone needs to kitbash this. The world demands it.
Why can't small spiders come to the house anymore? I rarely see spiders nowadays, but when I do they're fucking huge. They've exceeded the coin comparison stage, these guys are about the diameter of average-sized flashlights now. They're too big leg-wise to sit horizontally in glasses now.
It's the simple complete lack of movement from bugs when they're standing still that bugs me, because they can never move gradually - it's always got to be abruptly. I... I'm not sure if I'd say I like spiders, but I certainly admire them from a technical point of view, the unique biology and all. The same way I admire slugs but oh god get them away from me. I'm a huge jessie and hate killing bugs. Theoretically I'd like to say, "guys, seriously, you're kinda creeping me out just sitting there. Can't you just shimmy somewhere else, in a corner, preferably? Not a corner I use frequently because Jesus Christ warn me if I start moving toward you and we start invading our personal space and I look and I see you looking at me because that's going to shit both of our pants," but obviously you can't quite communicate with a bug that easily. Flies in rooms, for instance, I just try and move them towards an open window rather than trying to kill them. It's kinda tempting when they simply refuse to go out the window, but it's just a pathetic sight seeing them bang against glass. They're probably screaming "LET ME OUT LET ME OUT LET ME OUT LET ME OUT AAAAAAAAAA *wheeze* AAAAAAA" while all we hear is an annoying buzz, and dying during a panic attack probably wouldn't be fun, but I just don't see a reason to splatter them for impaired sight.
Maybe once the spiders reach the size of their American brethren I'll ditch my sympathy.
I'll never express sympathy for moths, though. Stop flying around so erratically you-- oh god they're in my eyes
I saw The Bourne Supremacy.
It was okay.
The first one was an engaging story on its own, and the balls-to-the-walls action really acted as a firm glue to keep you on the edge of your seat. It was a truly engaging two hours.
Supremacy was not balls-to-the-walls action. Personally, the story felt a bit more laidback and never as driven-forward as the first one. Obviously he wants answers, but he wasn't really being pursued across the globe like the first one (or, at least, pursued across the globe as competently as in the first movie), so it feels like he could take his time if he pleased. He appeared to have a better eye on his pursuers than they had on him. Obviously, Supremacy, he's got the slight upper hand and all, but it's just not quite as intense, y'know. The only real driving force seemed to be the death of his lady friend, who appeared to be suffering from a certain media-illness, but the lack of partner to Bourne really changed the dynamic of the film.
Yeah. It was okay.
I'm sorry this review is bad.
I suppose watching the film when I'm tired and probably wasn't paying attention didn't help.
I also watched the fifth episode of Grenadier, which I've been watching on the Xbox recently. It is not very good, and since the latest episode introduced a new obnoxious sidekick, that seemed like a good enough reason to stop watching.
People who are more experienced with anime basically call it "Trigun with breasts," as that's apparently a show starring a character who also aims to defeat his enemies non-fatally, despite toting a huge pistol around. Which I guess is accurate. Rushuna Tendo, the main character, travels the world trying to remove the will to fight from any violent person she meets, and she claims she does this with a smile, but in reality she just shoots their gun away or destroys their armour or mocks them or something and hope they don't come back later with a larger gun. Which often happens. She got trained in the art of non-violently removing enemies' will to fight, but doesn't appear to do a good job of it, and even others with the same goal and training don't do much about the non-violent part. The fifth episode even has someone praise her for her non-violent methods, despite shooting three rounds of bullets at her. What the hell? Of course, none of them hit since that someone was protecting herself by a floating stream of chains.
The series does not care for realism. When the third episode has a scene involving Rushuna firing a drilling bullet into any enemy's armour, and then piling five more on top of it to strengthen its pressure until the armour cracks, you can tell it doesn't care for realistic gunplay.
It does care for breasts, though. Practically every female character of importance is stacked like supermarket shelves, and Rushuna, despite toting a pair of ungodly sized watermelons around, is apparently sixteen years old. Yeesh. That, I'm afraid to say, is about all the series is good for. It doesn't try and get any intelligent stories going or complex characters to hook an upper-class audience and then keep the boobs for the sake of everyone else watching - the episodes I've seen just seemed like excuses for the animators to draw lots of them and animate them in varying ways. I mean, Rushuna's personality barely extends beyond an innocent, chirpy girl with an optimistic outlook on life and a weakness for hot bathes. Seriously, she favours bathing over eating, even when starving. We're dealing with a mature show, folks!
But following the tradition of every anime ever, there's a male sidekick. I personally don't understand why they bother. Just... why? The male character is never going to be interesting, is never going to have a compelling design, and anyone who watches these kinda shows is just looking for bosoms to ogle, so having a sausage-bearer hanging around is just going to spoil things for them. The sidekick is an extreme example. His personality barely extends beyond being a braggart, a hungry hound and a pervert. His design is like that of a low-quality original anime character created by a Western 12-year-old. His mere existence frustrates me over how incredibly pointless he is!
I think anime in general needs to be a precise quality for me to even remotely like it. Grenadier is kids fluff storylines with giant breasts as its sole feature of worth; it takes itself too seriously over the whole non-violent victory thing, when it could have just accepted the fact that nobody's going to see that as anything intelligent. It could've just been silly. If it's got low standards then at least it's easier to like. I think if an anime tries to appear intelligent, it's very easy for it to instead appear pretentious to me. It's a thin line to walk between good and instantly dreadful, and I seem to have a fool's ambition to find something serious and intelligent that I actually like. Meanwhile, Cromartie High in all of its silly glory will remain my favourite anime.
I mean, that scene there is actually meant to be dramatic. That guy (who was actually a kid thanks to a "mysterious illness" but upon having a curse broken caused him to age ten years in the blink of an eye! IT TOTALLY MAKES SENSE) having his face shoved into her breasts is apparently meant to cure him of his mindless rage and paranoia. If the show were trying to remain intelligent enough for its moments of symbolic rambling to have any worth, you could say it's trying to make a statement about motherhood here or something, but instead it just seems like it's going to generate comments of "fap fap fap fap." It's a good thing there isn't a video game of the series, otherwise fans might actually need their hands out of their pants.
Meanwhile, this is the kind of humour the show employs. Side-splitting stuff. I haven't seen this in anything else ever. Not to mention it does nothing to actually make what's-his-face there even a mildly-rounded character.
Grenadier frustrates me, and the fact I gave up less than halfway certainly shows how disgruntled I am towards the whole anime media. Or how easy it is to frustrate me. Damn you, Black Lagoon, and how you were actually a serious show that pushed all the right buttons for me between action and intelligence!
Maybe sometime I'll complain about how Pumpkin Scissors was totally wasted potential, judging from only the first episode. Or maybe I'll talk positively about something for once!
I had planned to go to a café in Belfast to relax and listen to some acoustic bands. Get mingling with the folk, embrace a bit of culture, and do something that's considered good for the artistic society.
Except the music thing was cancelled. So I went to see Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen! Since this is probably the first time I've reviewed a sequel without reviewing the original movie in the same month, here's a link to the original review in case anyone forgot. Not that I explain things well, mind you.
Everyone complained that the first movie had a severe lack of robots. The first hour was mostly human antics, and it wasn't until the end that you got some mass on-screen robot carnage. The sequel acknowledges this, and instead can't stop spewing out new robots. The first scene involves Optimus Prime, Ironhide and a slew of new faces chasing after a rogue Decepticon, destroying like a thousand dollars of shit per square inch. There's little time spent on one-on-one brawls here - now it's all about the number of participants and how many shades of shit can be knocked out of them. All about the number, baby.
Of course, there's still human antics, but since you don't need to wait like an hour before the robots shows up, the movie never feels to drag. Let's approach this in the same unwieldy manner as before.
Sam Witwicky goes to college. This doesn't mean much aside from one fight scene, but a fragment of the AllSpark he has plants images of a map in his mind to a new source of Energon; the Decepticons all want their hands on it, the Autobots are trying to hunt down the hiding Decepticons on the planet, and one man in the government doesn't want the Autobots around at all. That last subplot doesn't last long. And antics ensue!
Seriously, it's an explosion-filled insult-flinging popcorn flick. Women are lusted over, robots are sliced apart, and a lot of robots fart for some reason. It's not going to be a Shakespearean epic. Just sit down the watch your explosions.
I was kinda worried how all the new characters would be handled. Obviously the first movie ends with Prime's invitation for the Autobots to come to Earth, so... how are they going to be introduced?
By not being introduced at all. They're just there, and each new character gets like one forgettable line each. It could've been said by anyone else or not been said at all, and it wouldn't have changed anything. Sideswipe, or "Stabby McWheelFeet" as he's called in the fandom, takes part in the opening chase scene and is essentially forgotten about. The "Arcee Twins" (even though there's four of them) do... very little. A different Arcee was going to be in the first movie, but apparently the writers were concerned about how to explain female robots. Apparently they'd found a solution this time - don't explain it. I think most of them get killed, anyway. And then there's Jolt, a guy with an electricity power who appears in like two scenes and doesn't speak. I don't think he even gets to fight anyone. Don't you want to buy his toy? Amusingly, the writer said they tried hard to make him seem like a true member of the team and not just hastily thrown in. It's a bit hard to convey that when he's got two friggin' scenes.
There are Mudflap and Skids, however - two twins who beat each other up, diss each other and talk like bad racial stereotypes. The simple fact that they have personality, however, unfortunately makes them the most interesting of the Autobots. Ironhide and Ratchet? Four lines each, at the most, and it's only Ironhide who gets to do anything mildly cool. The twins are entertaining, but I'm concerned with how the films give the most attention to the more obnoxious characters. The serious robots are given little opportunity to speak while guys like these two are filling all their screen time with slang and insults. It lessens the 'human' aspect of the robots and just makes them catchphrase-spouting clichés. Though I will admit I laughed out loud at the exchange, "man, that hurt!" "it's supposed to hurt, it's an ass-whoopin'."
Also, Bumblebee can't talk, even though I'm sure it was implied that was solved at the end of the first movie. He hangs around, but ... he feels out of place. He doesn't have the impact he had as in the first movie, and his personality has hardly developed, so... why? He did at least get the children in the audience cheering for him, so I guess that's what matters.
There's a lot of them! Starscream and Megatron actually get to interact and, well, become characters. The titular Fallen, however, is a bit eh. He never really defines himself, and his mere presence changes the whole dynamic of Megatron being the big cheese of the Decepticons - where does this guy fit in? He doesn't get doing much and his final battle with Prime is very abrupt and almost anti-climatic, so good riddance to bad rubbish. His design could've been cool, but, really, it simply doesn't compare the hulking tank that is permanently on fire like in the comics.
The others who get screen time are Ravage, a truly awesome new take on our favourite metallic moggy; Wheelie, another guy who sounds like a bad racial stereotype but because of the fact he actually talks and makes his personality clear, is an entertaining guy; and Soundwave, who... doesn't do much. Seriously! He's one of the first two figures of the toyline release, and he just sits in space all day telling the Decepticons to mobilise. He does dispatch Ravage down to Earth, but he quite literally sits in space for the whole movie. I was anticipating him to land and start pulling some fan-pleasing "Soundwave superior" antics, but... he sits in space all day. That's where the comics fill in, apparently.
Jetfire isn't technically a Decepticon, but he's essentially a plot device, getting the ball rolling. He's not a bad racial stereotype, but just a stereotype of old people. He's amusing simply because he's a cranky old fart, but despite that he does get to do a few seconds of ass-whooping before he has a very abrupt self-sacrifice so Optimus Prime can not only come back to life, but also get some wings and weaponry.
Yeah, Prime dies, he comes back to life. Yeah, Jetfire dies. Yeah, Transformers: Animated had the exact same wings-and-new-weaponry-for-the-climax thing too.
There's also lots and lots and lots of other faces with very little significance. Identical look-alikes of Brawl, Bonecrusher and Blackout (tank, fork truck and helicopter, for those who aren't as nerdy as me to know) show up and are taken care of seconds after their debut (that doesn't stop them from getting toys, though!), and there's a gazillion of them in the final desert climax. Though considering three Decepticons survived the first movie (Starscream, Barricade and Scorponok), you'd almost expect some large plans to come out of that, but no. Starscream, of course, is around and gets involved in a number of fights. Scorponok is absent for the entire movie until he pops out of nowhere during Jetfire's rampage and promptly gets torn apart. So much for a dramatic return. And Barricade is missing in action. No mention at all. A hint of sequel/spin-off material, or just because nobody cared about him? You decide!
Same cast as the last, really. There's Sam and his parents, Mikaela, Agent Simmons and the two soldiers from the first movie, and the only new one to hang around is a dopey alien fanatic from Sam's college who essentially replaces Glen Whitman as the easily scared guy who screams and hollers when the robots show up. Probably because I'd come to expect what role they'd play, they were hardly offensive. Obviously they get lots of scenes to themselves, but it's to be expected. The interaction between Sam and his parents during college and before college is very entertaining, particularly the shenanigans his mother gets up to. If Glen Whitman returned I'd say it would've been better. Dopey alien fanatic was pretty dull.
If I may go on a tangent, although I'm not too familiar with all the comics, I think the Transformers movies are the only fiction I've seen that really, truly emphasises the partnership between the humans and robots. The final desert fight is a bit dull because it's not exclusively robot action, but humans and robots versus the Decepticons - who cares about a tank unless it can transform, huh? But the point stands that I think the interaction between the Transformers and humans is a vocal point of the series narrative. Sure, it's often portrayed sloppily, but there's a heart to the concept, that although we're creatures light-years away from each other with different cultures and entirely different biology, we still get on well. I think some stories try too hard to include it without really capturing the sweetness the concept can provide when they're only good at writing robot action, but I think it's something I'd like to see done well. When the cartoon moved into space for the third season, it really lost a lot of the charm, as it was like Rambo 2; just like putting the Vietnam veteran back into Vietnam made for an uninteresting plot, they put the Cybertronians back into Cybertron, which doesn't make for anything exciting. The fact the entire cast of the previous two seasons were killed off probably didn't help either. The personal interaction in the movie is a bit eh, but the simple matter of them fighting together side-by-side is a nice image.
Boy howdy. Kickin' ass. Of course, I wasn't as fully gripped as I could've been thanks to the simple matter of how underdeveloped the characters are. That Bumblebee vs. Rampage & Ravage scene could've been intense stuff, but... really, Ravage is just a cool cat, Rampage was a one-shot character who died after two minutes, and we all know Bumblebee's not going to die because he's the kid appeal. Just... not as gripping as it could've been, y'know.
But goddamn, the fight in the forest is intense. It's really about the only time I got truly involved, because it's brutal stuff. Megatron, Starscream, not-Blackout all against Optimus Prime, and Prime just kicks ass. Not-Blackout gets decapitated, Starscream gets his arm lopped off (and beaten with it, no less), and finally Prime is gutted by Megatron's blade, and dies. It is intense! The final battle is just... sure, it's good, but it's too much going on, and when Prime comes back and gets care of Megatron and The Fallen, it feels very rushed. He blasts Megatron through a wall and then... he... I don't know what happens, really, but it ends with The Fallen's head in pieces. It's not a long fight. But the forest fight... goddamn! It's just concentrated robot-versus-robot combat, and it just works so well. Worth seeing alone for that, I might have to say in a lapse of fanboy nerdiness overriding sense.
Give me a few months and I might try and rationalise things a little, and might probably come to hate the movie, but at this current point in time: Whooooooo!
Very good, very entertaining. The first movie wasn't for everyone, but I might have to say the sequel makes up for a few of its errors. It's obviously not perfect - the lack of characterisation still bugs me, and the robots in general had a bad habit of making too much noise while talking, drowning out their names or potential wisecracks, which I hope is toned down. It's still no less a popcorn flick than the first movie, but you get more explosions early on than the last movie.
Yeah, this is a bit of a boring month blog-wise. I'd like to say "it's not because I'm not doing anything," but really, like, for the entirety of this site I've been doing nothing, and it's only this month I've been doing something that could be considered slightly more than nothing. It's just I doubt anyone would be interested, y'know. Would you believe people are still coming here to read about that horribly-written coverage on the World of Illusion beta? Me neither! And I doubt they'd be interested in how I was recently slegged off by teenagers on bicycles when walking home a few days ago.
I was going to write about that, actually, but it really was a very boring bout of insulting. "Fat boy," "paedophile" and something about "taking it from both sides," which I guess involves cocks in a variety of orifices. I've always thought generalised insults are the bane of creativity. They apparently also thought riding away while flashing the middle finger actually meant anything. It's hard to be insulted when you can barely hear what they're saying thanks to the shit spraying out of their mouths (ohhhh). But seriously, totally uneventful, and it really does nothing to deter my dislike of cyclists. You know who are the only cyclists that have rung their bell to warn others they're approaching? Two seven year olds. Everyone else, from teenagers to pensioners, have just barrelled on through without regard to the safety of pedestrians. The next person who does that gets shivved.
I did read The Even, though; a limited-print book by by T.A. Moore, though. It's a signed copy for my dad, and apparently everyone else he knows has read it, and I am notoriously terrible for reading actual book, so why not? It's a fantasy story! I have real difficulty finding good ol' sci-fi and fantasy in book stores, meaning I have to rely on other people to find good ones for me. I'm a fussy pickle.
It's a very entertaining read. It's fairly short, though; hardly a Shakespearean epic read by a very slow-talking person - only 160 or so pages, but, really, I always prefer things that are short and sweet. Lenith, a cynical goddess of the underworld (more or less; there's lots of extravagant terms thrown around since the whole thing takes place in or around the realm of the dead, approximately. I've probably forgotten all the specifics and Tammy might eat my face for getting things wrong. I'd like to hold onto my face!) is burdened with the task of rescuing a creature of high-standing from the gnomes, but someone else has his own plans in mind for the same specimen. And world-destroying antics ensue. That is really the very basics of the story. As I said, it's short and sweet, but it never feels rushed.
Tammy makes a fantastic job of beautifully describing the thuggish yet fascinating culture of The Even, and has a fantastic way with words. Despite the rather grungy setting and the protagonist being what most people would call a cold bitch, every event that takes place is written in an attractive and wonderfully flowing manner; each setting has a unique life of its own, and each character, no matter how minimal their input is to the story, are portrayed with quirky mannerisms and unique appearances. For being such a shithole, it's a very colourful and vibrantly described world.
Time-outs are taken from the story on occasions to simply expand on the mythos of the land; in a video game they would bore me to tears, since my primary reason for playing games is to interact with stuff, primarily busting chops and kicking shins. But, of course, it just adds another layer to the first book I've enjoyed in a long time. Illustrations by Stephanie Law are interspersed throughout, and she does a fantastic job of working with the words. I think some people prefer books to not have illustrations so they can have their own vision, and while in most cases I agree, I might just have to be frighteningly positive and say I couldn't envision the settings and creatures any other way than how they're drawn in the book.
My dad thought the cover was a bit cheatsy when he first saw it, since Lenith doesn't have a face. No gimmick involving it being stolen by mountain bears or anything; she just doesn't have a face. Until he knew it was intended, he thought it seemed lazy. Intended or not, I think the cover would've suffered if it had a face. Faces are hard to get right on book covers, I feel; obviously if Harry Potter was missing his face on his book covers it'd be pretty freaky, but the cover is arty and full of wacky shapes, so to have a woman with a face would almost drag it back to reality. The lack of face with the arty backdrop just work well, I believe.
If I've got to complain, every time I read a story I have a hard time going back to writing my own stuff because I feel inferior. A couple of years ago I read a story of my brother's and it was precisely the sort of style I wanted for a story but failed to achieve, and spent a month going =( before I grew a pair. Now I've got lots of ideas but no inspiration to write them because Moore actually did good narration. I've a bad habit of being dialogue-centric.
I'd say to check it out, but only 200 copies were printed, apparently. Ooer.
Also watched The Bourne Identity. Fun times, fast-paced and lots of fists being exchanged, which is a good enough stand-in for explosions. Was there really only one explosion in the movie? Dearie me.
Though I have to complain about the DVD box. It spoiled the ending.
Not that I care since I love spoilers, but it seemed a bit odd because at the end I felt "oh, er, was I meant to be surprised by this?" Let me demonstrate by merely copying from a conversation I had, because I've wrote enough words for one evening.
|<Ragey> I did notice
the summary on the back of the box spoiled the end reveal that he was a
government experiment (or whatever) right in the first sentence. Are we
supposed to know that from the start or is it really meant to be a
<Lvk138> I think it was supposed to be a bit of a surprise
<Ragey> because it seemed a bit like summarising Citizen Kane as "some guy utters the name of the sled he had as a kid on his deathbed and people are wondering what's the deal with that, mang"
I finally got my Xbox modded a few days ago, and man is it a joy. I can't fully appreciate Captain America and the Avengers until it's on a TV. All I need is two extra controllers and, well, friends who'd actually want to play the game, and I could get some 4-player shenanigans going.
I haven't been paying attention to E3 because I can't even remember the last time I gave a shit about video games, but someone linked me to the trailer of Metroid: Other M to complain about Samus' "dyke-like lesbian hair" (his words, not mine) and my eye was drawn to New Super Mario Bros. Wii instead. It's got fucking 2-Player co-operative!
4-Player co-operative, in fact! Holy shit. All this needs is--
Yoshi riding?!? Nintendo, you sons of bitches. It only took you a sequel to realise what people wanted rather than silly Mini Mushrooms and another goddamned star collecting battle game.
Of course, knowing Nintendo's reputation of co-operative multi-player, they'll fully code it, make it playable in E3 demos, feature it in numerous videos, and then take it out for no reason. I've got my eye on you, Ninty.
Also, dude, where's Wario and Waluigi? I really can't imagine anyone wanting to play as a Toad when they can be someone good. And, hey, if it's multi-player and got these three characters, why not make Peach playable? It might actually require a new plot, but it'd be a Super Mario Bros. 2 homage and just make for better equality, y'know. Make it less of a sausage fest.
But... seriously, co-operative multi-player 2D platforms are what I well and truly love, as rare as they are, and to have it available on a console is just great. I'm of the Hallmark card belief that life is best when it's shared, and thus, multi-player makes any game better. Halo's campaign suddenly becomes enjoyable with a buddy at your side, Mario Kart's ludicrous follies are a double hoot if you're in competition with others, and the brawler genre thrives entirely on camaraderie and the inevitable breach of trust when you 'accidentally' throwing a fat guy in your friend's face. To face the trails of tribulations of Super Mario Bros. 3 in conjunction with a partner would just be awesome, y'know? Give me more of that pie, Nintendo.
Metroid: Other M looks okay. I can barely tell what genre it is, though, and I haven't even played the Prime games yet, so that needs rectified before I think of getting it. And Super Mario Galaxy 2 looks neat, but no co-operative multi-player so I'm not enthralled. No, a second Wii Remote collecting star bits doesn't count.
HOLD THE PRESSES YOU GUYS
Never mind the other two hundred or so people also on the plane, five of our boys have vanished.
British news frustrates the hell out of me. It really does.