Friday, July 31, 2009

The Cricketer Twitterer War Begins!

Edgbaston is rained out so badly it turns out that the 3rd test of this Ashes series will actually be decided entirely by Twitter! Hughes opened the salvo before the match even begun, with what many critics have described as an improper act - pre-empting CA's announcement.

Fuck. Fuck! FUUUUUCK! YOU ALL SUCK! I am going to kill the following people:

Brad Haddin
Tim Nielsen
Mitchell Johnson
Al Jolson
Kevin Rudd
Barack Obama
Tim Nielsen
Idi Amin
David Loy
Tim Brooke-Taylor
The Duke of York
Tim Nielsen
Whoever's reading this right now
The last one's mum
Tim Nielsen
Your fucking dog
Kaston Iago
Tim Nielsen
Matthew Hayden
Tim Nielsen

Yeah, I mentioned Tim a few times. I know voodoo. I might even crank it up to sixteen times. Arsehole. - twitter/phillybillyhughman


Followed by another selection bombshell from Stuart Clark:

I told Nielsen if he didn't give me the new ball then I'd skull-fuck his wife. Now I'm carrying the drinks. Thank you, vodka. - twitter/enigmaticbeanstalk


A shocking eleventh-hour injury:


lol, yez i tak eall of yous gayboys on, f uking HADDIN EL MAZRI, destr0y3r of worlds an sht, lol, i keep like atig er float like ben lee so what if i- AAHF(y028!o2- fuc, me fin ger! alwayz new fucking shift but on had it ina fpr me!!11! Aaaw fukk don fink i can type nemore... - twitter/Hadz0r_the_max0r detrax0r


With Brad Haddin out of the match, a new figure stepped into the breach.

I don't use Twitter. This is stupid. But I would like that green hat thank you. - twitter/Man'ou_Action!


The crucial toss:

who gives a toss - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

i do wanna make somethin of it. we win this, bitch. - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

lolz, nah mean who toss the coin 'n shit. I go heads by theway. - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

fuck off i go heads also it wasn't funny and i don't know. - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

your name is siriously gay - twitter/swaneeee

i like gay fuck you - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

yeah don't you follow the trends? gay is well cool now. thinking of dropping lara n a ditch, n fact. - twitter/theotherwhiteclarke

i called heads first. - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

thats true theres a time on the post n everything - twitter/theotherwhiteclarke

I agree with that, it is indeed true. - twitter/phillybillyhughman

shut up your not on the team. - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

we need to focus - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZUPPPPP! - twitter/watto1

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZZZZUH!!! - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZZZZZZZZZZZZUH! - twitter/theotherwhiteclarke

ffs - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

WAAAAAAAAAAAZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZUH! - twitter/midgemucka69

that is so old and gay i chrissen it liberace. lol at my def sweet lines. - twitter/swanee

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZZZZZZZUH!! - twitter/siddle_in_themiddle

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZZZZZZZUHHH! - twitter/MistahANDERson

et tu fuckwit? - twitter/swanee

WAaaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAzzzuhhhhh[[[[[ j aaaaargh fuk yeuz me finga reeel canezz! lol at ti hs.!11!1 - twitter/Hadz0r_the_max0r detrax0r


Eventually it was decided that England had won the toss, seeing as the coin always lands heads up as proven by Dr Karl and Einstein, and so England elected to field first, given that Australia had more batsmen with accounts.

Disaster struky early, with a wicket falling in the very first over!


Okay, I've held me tongue because I assumed this was a retarded idea of Clarkey's and nothing more. But it seems you actually do want to play a test match through Twitter. Fine. Great. Now I KNOW you're all brain-damaged and I don't have to keep wondering. If you'll excuse me I'm going to get drunk by myself and sing the team song until 2 in the morning. Try and interrupt and I will kill you. You know this is true. - twitter/S(k)yKatz!


Fortunately the Australians showed solidarity and the besieged captain stepped into the breach

fuck off we don't need you. Clarkey, put the team chihuaha onto his keyboard. twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

slnkklb elhiale9toe.e - twitter/S(k)yKatz!


...maybe the wicket hadn't fallen. The rules aren't cut and dry in this version.

Katich did not make a convincing start. He was tormented by the unreal bounce and swing that Anderson gleaned from a dead pitch.

Let's look at this one, over th wicket, it's a loose cutter isn't it Katich, you let it go and what happens? Hang on, it's a fucking pearler, it comes back in - TWO WHOLE METRES! JUST missing off-stump! - twitter/mistahANDERson

jkblfa90pe; - twitter/S(k)yKatz!

Listen to that exclamation of terror, the feer at facing tha GREATEST BOWLER IN THE WORLD! I own you, Kat, like Tony Grieg owned so many slaves before me. - twitter/mistahANDERson

dude.. not meant to talk about that - twitter/swanee

Hey, come on Gray it was an earlier time. People will understand now.. - twitter/mistahANDERson


But it was Swann who got the break through

Ooh, yeah, look at this one, Kitty, it's breaking leg, but two feet outside off, that would be good for a cover drive, wouldn't it? You going to drive? Type something incoheren if you're going to drive. - twitter/swanee

li99yup; - twitter/S(k)yKatz!

he said up! That makes sense! - twitter/watto1

No, he goes for it! But it's dead straight! Slap into the pads! HOWZAT?!?!? - twitter/swanee

That is so out I'm giving him a tin of wax and a penny to do my car. - twitter/enigmaticbeanstalk

WTF u doing, clarkey??!1/? - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

reading steve waugh's captain diaries and.. adjsuting my belt?/ - twitter/theotherwhiteclarke

no the other one!! - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

I'm umpiring the match, you pricks. And you're all out. One way or another. I'd evil laugh here if I knew how to type it. - twitter/enigmaticbeanstalk

this isnt over u prick - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

O RLY???? ... again, if I knew how to do attachments here there'd be a funny picture of an owl here. - twitter/enigmaticbeanstalk

itghiqaoplk - twitter/S(k)yKatz!

Get off the fucking field - twitter/enigmaticbeanstalk


Watson made a strong stand, though, impressing everyone with his skill


WHHHHAPPPAYEOW! czech it, fuckers, that ball clipped a seraphim!1 -twitter/watto1

er... a what? - twitter/swanee

Seraphim. the highest chwoyer of angel in heaven. - twitter/watto1

Yeha? Maybe the.. highest choir of gayness. - twitter/swanee

No, that wuld totally be your patio - twitter/watto1

ha he totally got you therem graybags! that one counts as a six. - twitter/Pintofpointingpunterponting

a six? maybe a six out of six for... for.... gayness? - twitter/swanee

Not, that would be your own score. - twitter/watto1

damnit! Teh hits keep coming! I'm melting! MEEEEELTING! - twitter/swanee

wtf you still playing that? - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

..yeh, where you? - twitter/swanee

pub - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

pub? - twitter/swanee

pub - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

pub - twitter/mistahANDERson

pub! ... pubs are gay - twitter/swanee

fuck off you horse-toothed price im not followin u anywmore! - twitter/OsSTRAUSSisation

NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! - twitter/swanee


Unfortunately, shortly after this point the rain stopped and so the world's first ever Test Twitter Match is in serious danger of being sunned out before a result can be decided. People all over England are praying for just a couple more days of rain...

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Jumblebag of Toss

What's with the name joss-stick? It sounds incredibly rude. And does it have any connexion to Joss Whedon?

Note, I wrote connection that weird way as a spur-of-the-moment Tolkien tribute. He notably wrote it like that, the crazy bastard. But then so did Fred Hoyle. Who was probably even crazier.

*

My friend is now posting on Twitter, in character as a mentally disturbed sex-offender he has dubbed 'Mr Gun', a character he is attempted to get viral spread through the internet but I'm doubtful at the moment it's going to spread any time soon. Out of curiosity of what on Earth he would be saying on Twitter I thought I'd go and check it out in spite of my massive aversion to the entire concept of micro-blogs (as you might have guessed from my habit of pretty much never writing less than 500 words here). But, what happened next inspired me to rant at a random on my MSN. Black box recording follows:

That Jared Guy
Do I have to actually sign up to Twitter to read anything on it?

Lance
yeah, you do
but you don't have to follow anyone

That Jared Guy
That is the gayest thing I have ever heard

Lance
to like read the stuff that is
lol, yeah. I guess it is.

That Jared Guy
Why does EVERYTHING need an account now?
It pisses me right off
I've already got more accounts than I want to look after

Lance
lol
it takes like 30 secs to register on the site

That Jared Guy
Yeah
Then I need to remember the weird usernames I have because 8 billion people sign up to these stupid sites because they HAVE to if they want to read it, so it's something like zvzvban8776leetllamafucker@tipwickle.com
And then the password, because you're not meant to use the same password every time and they all have different strength detectors
Then I have to enter the data 30 times because they've got a code I need to enter in hotpink wingdings over a hot pink wingdings background because otherwise the spambots will get in

Lance
I am sure your usernames wouldn't be THAT complicated to remember

That Jared Guy
The internet's fucked
I want to make my OWN internet, where anarchy will rule all

Lance
LOL, indeed it is
but it can't get better
accept it
sif, it won't work

That Jared Guy
It shall work better than your face

Lance
LOL ok.... you can start up your own Internetz

That Jared Guy
And you won't be invited

Lance
but I am pretty sure it will be a network of 1 for a quite a long time

That Jared Guy
You're too much of a pawn of the corporate powers

Lance
lol


Plans for the JaredNet are still ongoing. Watch this space!

*

I'm quite pleased with my sprite work as of late. This is a rough paint-over, I admit, but I still think it looks quite cool:



*

Bloody hell, I've just realised I've got so many odd projects in my mind I've completely forgotten about Mycroft. I really should finish it. Here's an extract, the teaser bit that anyone could have written and from which you can glean nothing at all.


SCENE 1

(ACOUSTIC: Secluded area of parkland on a fine day - children playing in the distance, birdcalls etcetera. )

(FX: Footsteps across a gravel path, a page is turned on a newspaper)

PENELOPE: This is it?

(FX - newspaper being lowered)

CHARLES: Is it?

PENELOPE: 86-581.3

CHARLES: Looks like it is. Have yourself a seat.

(FX - Penelope sits down)

PENELOPE: GPS co-ordinates? Really? I thought it had to be something interesting with those - abandoned warehouse, hidden shipping container, a... I don't know a sewer? Instead, what do I get? Third bench on the bloody right.

CHARLES: Sorry, your file didn't say anything about liking sewers. I did bring a thermos, though - milk one sugar?

PENELOPE: It is. Rachel tell you that, did she?

CHARLES: Of course. Along with a lot of other things.

PENELOPE: Must take all of the fun out being a spy, finding out that your mark sits next to a blabber mouth.

CHARLES: Unless you arrange for your mark to sit next to a blabber mouth. A month in advance. Impressed yet?

PENELOPE: Well... let's say about halfway there.

CHARLES: Oh, good. I like it when they're hard to impress. Skip the entrees - how would you like to meet the most powerful man in Britain?

PENELOPE: (awed) The Prime Minister?

(Charles laughs)

CHARLES: You have a lot to learn.


Those GPS coordinates are probably bullshit because I have no idea what format they come out in, and it's surprisingly hard to find out online. Also, I wrote that nearly a year ago. Just a piece of evidence that I have actually done some of it more than anything else.



... bloody hell, looking at one of the text files I've found this exchange

A - Are you happy?

B - Depends on how you classify happiness. Is it a binary value, or a relative scale? Depending on that the answer is either 'No', or 'Less and less so'.

Which I kind of like. But who's A and who's B??

Ooh, here's a better one, with character names and all!


PENELOPE: So you do believe in conspiracies?

MYCROFT: That's a little like asking a fish whether it believes in water.


Apologies, because 80% of the show in my mind is characters trying to out-Boucher each other (minus the shooting parts) so if you're on the mailing list for when I finally finish the script you'd best prepare yourself for wanky dialogue.

*

My predictions for the next Test Match probably aren't worth their own post, as they're pretty basic. If Johnson plays, we lose or draw. If he doesn't, I'd say we win because England is not looking a convincing side Flintoff notwithstanding.

My ideal side...

Simon Katich
Phillip Hughes
Ricky Ponting
Callum Ferguson
Michael Clarke
Andrew MacDonald
Shane Watson
Peter Siddle
Ben Hilfenhaus
Stuart Clark

Please note: there is precisely zero chance that this team marches out in Birmingham.

*

Hey, I forgot to review Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. It was really good. In fact, I think it's the best of the films so far (although I didn't see 5 so I'm not the best judge) simply for it's ability to stand alone. ie, I hadn't read the books and understood it. Unlike my friend and mother, to whom I had to explain the entire plot of The Prisoner of Azkaban, which apparently everyone agrees was 'the best' despite being incoherent and having the shittiest werewolf ever to appear outside of MST3K.

Because the adult characters are pretty irrelevant aside from Dumbledore and the new-teacher-of-the-year, in spite of encompassing Britain's entire A-list as well as the bloke who played Peterson in Red Dwarf, some comments on the young cast:

* I wish I had had the chance to go out with Luna.
* Lavender Brown now looks .. slightly odd.
* Neville Longbottom has screwed the entire story over by actually growing up to be both bigger and better-looking than the rest of the male cast.
* Rupert 'Ron Weasely' Grint must be loving the fact that he's the fucking co-star of one of the world's biggest movie franchises ever, given that he'll never be in vag-deficit again despite having a face the texture and colour of turnip vomit.
* The disgustingly handsome bloke hitting on Hermione who she hates due to loving Ron makes the above more humourous.
* Obviously Hermione is hot, we've said that for years and for me the age difference has even made it non-creepy! (according to my current TAFE class this is debatable. She's the same age as my now ex-girlfriend! But apparently the jury's out on that as well..)
* Daniel Radcliffe's acting is... you know it isn't terrible. But there's a notable deficit for a starring guy in these films.
* On the contrast, Draco's acting is outstanding, mostly because in the first films he is by far the hammiest and hardest to watch of all of them.
* I'm not a creepy pedophile. I've said that before but I felt it might need clarifying after that one two stars up. Come on, she's legal! I'm only twenty- huh? Where are you taking me?! No.. it's cool, I- argh! POWER TO THE PEOPLE! NEVER SURREND-kl;a.


YOU HAVE READ NOTHING
Signed, the author of this blog.

Nostalgia can be a Frightening Place

Further proof that my twilight years of the twenties are simply a long, drawn out mental breakdown seems to be my current pre-occupation with reliving the days of my dime-store youth via a magical program called MAME, an emulator that allows play-through of any number of ancient arcade games on a PC. And looking back, as always seems to be the case, it's amazing how little sense it all makes. Let's start with the big one -

Street Fighter II

Definitely one of the biggest, most popular and best-known video games ever made. Specifically Street Fighter II, rather than number one which has faded into instant obscurity. My nostalgia for this in particular was fueled by the recent release of number IV, which reminded me of the ludicrous amount of fifty cent pieces I wasted on this at the local general store. However I missed the loop a fair bit, finding myself not knowing quite a large number of characters - and then found out this was because I was ignorant of the many, many mini-sequels the game spawned:

Street Fighter II: Champion Edition
Street Fighter II: Hyper Fighting
Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers
Super Street Fighter II: Turbo Hyper Fighting Champion Edition
Street Fighter VS X-Men!
Hyper Street Fighter II: Armapocalypse WOW!
Turbo Street Fighter II: Hyper Super Smash Bros Champion THIS
Super Duper Ultra Omega Zoot Suit Hyperbole Street Fighter II: Dr. Duck's Super Secret All-Purpose Sauce


That last game naturally featured Jimmy the Blind, Illustrated, Solid Silver Bitch Stockopopolis III as the new boss character. Unless it's some form of facetious humour on my part, of course.

Anyway, the bizarre amassed lineup of these games, along with their even stranger backstories...

Ryu and Ken - Two fighters in colour-coded karate outfits who are so similar in appearance and style you suspect one is a paint-over of the other. Insignificant aside from appearing in every game and their ability to baffling shoot blue fireballs out of their bare hands.

Commander Guile - A U.S airforce officer who was so traumatised by the death of his pal Charlie that he decided to travel the world beating up strangers. He is somehow able to create a boomerang-shaped projectile sonic wave by whipping his arm around his head, and helpfully shouts "SONIC BOOM!" whilst he does it. Interestingly, the character was specifically designed to appeal to the American market by the Japanese, just like the original Donkey Kong. That should give some insight into how they see the West.

Deejay - A hit-record-producing Jamaican guy in trackie-dacks who uses breakdance moves as combat. Apparently he believes that beating up everyone else will give him inspiration for a new song. No, I'm serious.

Blanka - My fucking nemesis, because this guy is ridiculously hard to beat. The character leads me to wonder whether Brazil are offended by this guy representing them in the tournament, as every other competitor is clearly human, yet Blanka is a small, thick set apeman with green skin, freakishly long arms, fangs and bright orange hair. His confusing backstory says that he is an aircrash survivor who adapted to life in the jungle by hunting on his own, as he did so covering himself in green slime for camoflage. Which doesn't explain all the other mutations. Oh, and he's able to electrocute people with his bare skin. He learnt that from electric eels apparently. Plus he has the ability to defy all laws off physics by rolling into a ball and cannon-balling off thin air into your face, thus killing you quite effectively.

Fei Long - Or as he is nicknamed by the developers "No he is not Bruce Lee because we don't have the likeness rights." Notable for have a fighting style, outfit, haircut, face and voice identical to that of Bruce Lee. He spins his foot around until it sets itself on fire and then kicks you with it when his regular moves get too boring.

E. Honda - Apparently a sumo wrestler, but he ignores most of the traits of their fighting style and focuses on beating the absolute crap out of you. His arsenal includes the ability a lightning fast karate-chop, a bone-crushing bearhug, a weird human torpedo trick and an ass-slam from a great height.

Dhalsim - There has been a fair bit of speculation over why a devout Hindu brahmin from India, as Dhalsmin appears to be, would dress and look like an offensively stereotypical African witchdoctor down to the necklace of monkey skulls. And also why an emaciated Hindu who wears nothing but said monkey skulls and an ancient pair of brown shorts would appear to live in a jade palace. And then the question of why said palace would be full of fully-grown elephants, as if it was some sort of stable - with all that plush carpeting, too. That's not even asking the question of whether a lifetime of diligent yoga will allow you to stretch your limbs out to six metres to beat the crap out of your opponents, breath fire, and teleport. This character is fairly unrealistic, I think it's fair to say.

Thunder Hawk - Possibly offensive Native American stereotype, especially considering that he is stated to be Mexican - or maybe I'm drawing unfair conclusions. Maybe a lot of indigenous Mexicans wear entirely denim outfits with frayed tassles on the end of their jeans and feathers in their bandanas - how would I know? Otherwise notable for being cartoonishly large and being able to swoop-dive other characters like he's some sort of `roid-addicted magpie.

Chun-Li - Hmm, just looked at the Wikipedia page and turns out I didn't get the character at all. Turns out that she's an undercover Interpol agent... which is really an irrelevent point as she's in the tournament purely to beat the shit out of the guy who killed her father and once she's done that she retires from Interpol. Yeah, great work. Anyway, she's a crazy Chinese girl who has a special power named "The Hundred Rending Kicks", who fights in white boots, panty house and a blue skirtless party dress with white ribbons in her hair. To her credit, she claims to be "the strongest woman in the world" and is the only character I've managed to beat the game with so far. And in Super Street Fighter she gains the power to shoot blue energy balls out of her crotch. Possibly mutant as she's an honorary member of the X-men. (Crossover fanwank! Ain't it great?)

Zangief - A very jolly Soviet wrestler apparently on a mission from Mikhail Gorbachev, of all people - even in version of the games where Gorbachev was no longer President. (They changed it to say "Mr Ex-President!" - but didn't bother with smaller details like his home country still being called USSR) He seems to be the most heavily-muscled man in the entire world, sports a fetching beard and mohawk, and proved the inspiration for Peter Debnam (remember him?) by wearing nothing but a disconcertingly bulgy pair of red speedos. He eschews all fancy-shmancy 'moves' and his style concentrates on massive punches and throwing people around the ring. As a kid he was my favourite, as he was an instrument with which I could vent much frustration.

The above are the 'good guys' - I'm not sure why exactly this was decided but so it is - who, once they have beaten the shite out of one another, are free to take on Shadaloo (???) a sinister organisation that is shadowy in its origins because the people making the game probably couldn't be arsed to come up with an explanation. In addition to apparently loving scat music, Shadaloo seems to consist of only four people.


Balrog: An African-American boxer of over-generous size. You would think his fighting style would make him a bit limited against free-forming wrestlers with super-powers, but Balrog, somehow, does manage to hold his own. Of course, his gimmick is the fact that he can only punch with varying degrees of ferocity - amazingly this makes him quite a boring character to play.

Vega: A probably-homosexual long-haired Spaniard who regards himself as the most beautiful man in the world and thus wears and iron mask in the ring to protect his face. He also wears a dashing pair of pirate pants tied with a cumberbund, and a claw strapped to his right hand, which he uses to climb all over the room and attack you. (Note: This makes sense in his own arena where you are fighting in front of a wire fence. This makes less sense most other places, where he appears to be able to climb spectator's faces and thin air..)

Sagat: A seven-foot-tall Thailand kickboxer with an eyepatch and a chip on his shoulder. Wears nothing but boxing shorts, seemingly to show off the gigantic scar he has over the length of his torso. The most annoying character to face, not simply because of his moves but the fact that he won't fucking stop shouting "Tiger!" at you. I think it's a form of Tourettes myself.

M. Bison: Just your standard Thai military dictator with the ability to turn his body into a flaming torch and fly across the screen. Apparently he's really evil, but only showcases it by a) Wearing a cape, and b) Telling you to 'Get lost!' if he beats you, which seems more like schoolyard nastiness to me. The most interesting thing about him is his damn weird name - which is actually meant to go to Balrog, the black boxer. M. Bison - Mike Tyson, get it? The Americans who translated the game were given panic attacks by the clear danger of getting sued and so the names were switched around.

Incidentally, what have the Japanese got against Thai people?

Because each character, after you complete the game using them, has a cheesy ending 'movie' with extremely poorly translated English telling you the character's fate. So as soon as I won the game with Chun-Li (Her ending - now she has beaten all the greatest fighters in the world she spends her time beating the shit out of everybody who makes a suggestive comment without mercy. Yay!) I decided to go back and see what the hell would happen when you defeat M. Bison using... M. Bison. The baffling result is an image of Bison shrieking out that he is unstoppable now that he has defeated even 'the Ancient One!' followed by a message informing you in the politest terms that your actions have brought about the end of the world. So apparently Cthulu showed up in disguise as Bison, fights him, and the result is that Bison is declared king of the world.... I think...


Vendetta

Playing Vendetta again was a blast, as this was a game that really lodged itself into my memory like a barbed piece of shrapnel. At the rec hall of the Pacific Palms resort where we stayed, this was THE arcade game to play for many years. Re-playing it now, I marvel that by rights I should be a complete psychopath for playing this game so long.

About 60% of arcade games in the old days were side-scrolling beat 'em ups. That is, you're a lone guy (or a guy with a second player ethnic tag-team buddy) who finds himself on a scene surrounded by bad guys, you then do as duty dictates by beating the shit out of them, and then walk across until you find MORE bad guys to beat the crap out of. Vendetta set itself out from the pack by being exceptionally outrageous.

The main characters are only-just lawyer-friendly depictions of Hulk Holgan, Mike Tyson, Jean Claude VanDamme and Mr T. (named Hawk, Blood, Boomer and Sledge respectively) who have had the lone female member of their very small gang kidnapped and taken to another city, specifically Dead End City, which is notable for being populated and administrated entirely by unnecessarily hostile armed scumbags.

Weapons include: crates, spare tires, lengths of wood, lengths of chains, bags of flour, bullwhips, buckets, bottles, bricks, molotov cocktails, baseball bats, dynamite and the mighty SHOTGUN which solves all of your problems once you get ahold of it.

The thing that really made me marvel that my parents allowed me to spend so much time in this game are details like the ability to kick the living shit out of enemies once they've fallen on the ground, giant enemies dressed in Rollerball gear, big fat men in gimp outfits who charge you, flashers with molotovs jumping out of their coats, the dominatrices who whip the bejesus out of (and whom our heroes naturally have no qualm smashing with baseball bats before body-slamming their prone form) and, a feature censored out of the American version I downloaded but that I clearly remember, trenchcoat wearing diminutive gay men who somehow injure our heroes by jumping them, then proceeding to hug them before licking their face like a dog.

Hey, it was an earlier time. For whatever reason I miss those guys. The Red Light level feels empty without them.

A criticism leveled against games of this ilk is that level design gets decreasingly interesting as the game goes on, because the designers did not expect players to get too far in (after all, that costs money). I do have to say that, even though the game is fun, there is some evidence of this.

First level boss - 'Buzzsaw Bravado', a maniacal leather-jacket-bound giant with a buzzsaw you fight upon the back of a speeding flatbed truck.

Final level boss - 'Faust', a giant fat bloke in pimp clothing who damages you by breathing hookah smoke on you and pulls out machine guns when the going gets tough. Fought in a squalid bedsit.



Street Fighter Alpha

Just when you think there aren't enough characters to beat the shit out of one another comes this game, which adds what looks to be 500 news guys to the game, and a weird storyline told entirely through badly translated dialogue. My favourite pre-match sequence has to be the stare-down between assassins Gen and Akuma where the dialogue consisted almost entirely of, and I quote, '...'

The odd thing with this series is that they are supposedly prequel stories of all the characters - which makes things slightly odd regarding whether we're meant to accept this as canon, because if they all are it means that M. Bison can still be considered the greatest fighter in the world years later, despite getting the shit kicked out of him by seemingly every decent fighter on the planet.


The Simpsons

I remember my mum commenting that she was quite interested to hear about the Simpsons video game and 'what all the characters would be up to', and after which being horrified to hear that they were all just beating the shit out of strangers. As a child this made perfect sense, because that was just all people did in arcade games (as this post will attest) Looking back now, this game is fairly alarming, and it's easy to see why there is no comic tie-in or any in-episode references.

The plot, after all, doesn't quite flow like your normal Simpsons episode. Marge, Homer and the Kids walk down the street - nothing too weird so far. Then, as they walk past a jeweller's, Smithers jumps out of the glass door with a band of goons laughing maniacally at all the invaluable gold and diamonds he has stolen. (Didn't take long, did it?) In his excitement he runs straight into Homer, causing the diamond he is carrying to fly up into the air and land in Maggie's swaddling clothes. Naturally our newly-turned jewel thief bureaucrat doesn't want to look like some sort of fumbling pedophile, so he steals the entire infant before running off.

In similar logic, the idea of going to the police and telling them about the babybreaking jewel thief who robbed a store with no disguise in broad daylight with dozens of witnesses never crosses the minds of the Simpson family, who set about a Charles Bronson-esque rampage through Springfield, specifically of the sort that makes a hell of a lot more sense when you're playing ex-Pro wrestling gangsters.

Bart is armed with his skateboard, Marge with her vacuum cleaner, Lisa, uncharacteristically, with a skipping rope and Homer goes pure fists-of-fury because he's just that fucking hard. Incidentally, aside from Smither's two initial goons, it's never explained why you are fighting anyone at all. Least of all, an indefatigable and seemingly endless army that seems to be two blokes who keep showing up - one a thin guy in a suit who kind of looks like Lenny, the other a fat bloke in a pink shirt who's closest look-a-like would be the creator of Itchy and Scratchy.

There is a variety of enemies to face, although they make little more sense, as the progression of the game seems to flow with the logic of an acid trip -

Downtown Springfield - sensible enough. You walk down the road and fight a shitload of those creepy clone enemies I've mentioned. The oddity comes from the firemen apparently being against you. Boss: A freakishly large wrestler who you defeat by waiting until his boxer shorts fall down, at which point he is defenseless.

Krustyland - despite being called Krustyland, there are only a couple of Krusties in site. Most of the enemies are Bongo, the one-eared rabbit from the 'Life in Hell' comic strips that Matt Groening used to do on the side. Who are just more clone guys inside, apparently. Boss: An unusually fast, animated and deadly Krusty hot air balloon, piloted by a homicidal Smithers.

Cemetary - zombies everywhere. To many zombies in fact. As a humourous point the weird clones try to freak you out by falling from trees with sheets on their head but end up running away themselves. Ends in a lengthy sub-terranean elevator fight, because we all know that Moe's Tavern is located in a tunnel system underneath the graveyard, right? Boss: Two dudes in suit, one short, one massive. The big guy throws the little guy at you. A lot. Interestingly near-identical to a couple of bosses in Vendetta.

Moe's Tavern - is now the longest frigging bar in the world. The boss is a dude in a leather vest who breathes fire.

The Springfield Butte: ie, the great outdoors/mountain. Boulders fall from the sky, quite a lot. I think there are bigfoots, and you can pick up three-eyed fish and use them as weapons. Boss: A giant bear you see escape from the zoo in Krustyland earlier - except when you defeat him he shrinks down and turns into the pink-shirted fat-clone bloke with NO EXPLANATION WTF???

The Dream World: Because you fall off a waterfall at the end of the last level you knock yourself out and wake up in THE DREAM WORLD, which resembles that episode where Homer falls asleep at the wheel after working a 16-hour shift - a landscape of peaceful clouds. Filled with stuff trying to kill you. Giant flying saxophones, punchy anthropomorphic angel-winged donuts, cloudy Marge heads popping out of the ground to whack you, and disembodied radioactive suits are all on the menu . Boss A gigantic bowling ball monster, with arms of more bowling balls, who shoots EVEN MORE bowling balls and is very, very difficult to kill.

Channel 6 Studios: In a humourous cutscene directly before this level your character shrieks in terror at seeing Maggie led into the buidling. I'm not sure why it should be so terrifying. Interestingly one short glimpse of Kent Brockman reading the news is the only sign that this is actually Channel 6 from the series. You walk onto the set of a cheap sci-fi and fight lots of aliens. Okay. From there on you walk onto the set of a ... ninja thing. And fight a LOT of ninjas. Boss: An insane samurai carrying a big spear that he twirls a lot. Like most of the bosses he is unfeasibly gigantic.

The Nuclear Power Plant: I remembered this being a proper level, but I was wrong. Your character charges into Burns' office and confronts Smithers, so it's the boss fight right away. The Japanese take on Smithers is interestingly. Instead of a passive aggressive yet highly effeminate and workaholic manager-cum-glorified PA, he is a psychotic pyromaniacal blue haired man running around in a cape with lots and lots of lit bombs with which he tries to kill you. If nothing else, it's an interesting take. Once he is unequivocably dead, the wall crashes in an Burns comes in, to fight you in his giant robot suit. Entertainingly, the fight lasts three times longer than normal - destroy the robots legs and it grows tank tracks. Destroy the tank tracks and it grows an innertube which turns it into a hovecraft. Destroy the hovercraft and Burns will still shoot at you until you hit him a few more times. Also, the robot fires nuclear bombs.

Once the robot is destroyed Burns stands around gormlessly, having no actual attacks of his own. It also takes just one hit to kill him. And he is definitely dead, as the cutscene depicts him with big crosses in place of pupils and his tongue hanging slack outside his mouth. And Maggie's safe. Yay! Cue for traditional Japanese arcade game walk into the sunset!

The most impressive thing about this game, other than its graphics which were simply terrific for the time, is that they actually got Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Yeardley Smith and... oh, man, have to remember the chick who does the voice of Bart or I'll lose some nerd cred... aw, screw it I'll use wikipedia. Nancy Cartwright! Of course. She doesn't look like a Nancy. Anyway, they got them to do all the voices. Which just goes to show... with licensing and official casting, does not come respectability.

Also, try to fit this game into canon. Go on. I dare you.

Street Fighter III

It's like Street Fighter II... with the predecessor's character roster insanity level multiplied by 8 billion. And a rap soundtrack. Download at your own risk.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

IMDB: For all your pointless Troll-Fight needs...

For some reason I went to the boards for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and made a post. Here's what happened next:

(WARNING: Contains spoilers that everybody ruined right after the book came out years ago... so doesn't really have spoilers. Unless you've forgotten them.)


ME

Haven't read the book, thought it was brilliant

Surprised by the negativity, because I was blown away by this film on the weekend, as it seemed to be the only one that focused on working just as a movie (albeit one you need lots of prior knowledge to follow) I stopped reading the series with Phoenix because I found the plot was getting muddled and uninspiring, and also didn't watch the movie due to not liking the book and the fact Goblet turned out as such an incoherent movie. I let myself be dragged along, though, and was really impressed by how much sense it all made.

The only 'WTF' thing for me was (spoiler, but who hasn't seen it, really?) -


"That's right, Potter... I am the Half-Blood Prince!"


I don't know, I think the fact that you just killed Dumbledore trumps that a little.


verdantabyss

Let me guess, you're an American.

ME

Let me tell you, you're wrong.

verdantabyss

he thinks snape killing dumbledore means that he isn't the half-blood Prince, and I doubt anybody who isn't american could honestly be that stupid

do u even know why he's called that????

britain kicks america's arse

ME

..I see. It is perhaps prudent at this point to explain the meaning of the word 'trump' - which generally means 'render insignificant through virtue of comparison'. Not 'therefore this is not so'.

So

"I don't know, I think the fact that you just killed Dumbledore trumps that a little. "

Would not mean 'Clearly you have killed a man thus this cannot be the case' as you read it, but rather 'I am currently horrified you have killed my surrogate father figure, so the fact I was carrying your textbook is not of much interest to me, sir'.

Please expand your vocabulary to avoid such future misunderstandings.

verdantabyss

yeah its only 99% of them that are inbred hicks lol every time there's a britain vs usa debate the yanks get gunned down as usual lol i love stirring the monkey cage and watching americans jump around throwing *beep* everywhere hahahahaha
LOL at this yank

how come you americans arrived in world war 2 so late?? is it because all of your troops were on Segways and the batteries ran out?

loool fail more

ME

The Americans entered the war late because they had heavily disbanded their military in the aftermath of WWI, and were hedging their bets to various degrees - something rarely acknowledged today is that the nation was quite right-wing at the time and that there was a sizeable proportion of the population that supported facism in general and, by extension, Adolf Hitler. The war also seemed to be contained largely to the European continent and the nation as a whole did not have particularly close ties to Great Britain at the time.

All indications are that America would have joined the Allied Forces by the beginning of 1942 at the latest from various records of diplomatic talks with the UK, but the matter was forced by America's primary concern with the growing unrest in the Pacific from the new regime in Japan - particularly with the December assault on the Florida naval base at Pearl Harbour which took place before an official declaration of war, reputedly due to communication troubles.

The explanation you offered is unlikely. Segways cannot travel over water.

verdantabyss

thanks for copying straight from wikipedia and trying to pass it off as your own good job

and why does america try and take all the credit for world war 2 and pretend they saved everybody else?? because they're arrogant morons thats why

britain > usa go eat another cheeseburger

ME

Enter it into Google. See what comes up. Marvel at my ability to create complicated sequences of linguistic articles using my own brain and the power of memory.

The Americans are overly proud of their own work in WWII due to the excessive numbers and cost that went into it. Historically evidence is that their strategy, tactics and morale were significantly lower than those of other nations in the field, but many units did distinguish themselves. The large resources that they possessed also meant that other countries made diplomatic efforts to groom their ego, so their war effort was inflated in the media, unfortunate mistakes ignored. Furthermore, because of the British tendency to extreme secrecy in military matters, many details of their war effort have only recently come to light, too late to enter the popular consciousness, partiuclarly the key role in ensuring that the famous Normandy beach landings were undetected by German intelligence and that Panzer divisions were not called in.

Usually I'd agree that Great Britain is superior, but somehow I've recently come to the conclusion that they lack somewhat in terms of humility.

I'm Australian, by the way. It's amazing how many countries there are that speak English, isn't there?


verdantabyss

australian eh so you're the descendant of murderers and rapists?? lol you should've just stuck with being called a yank instead

our queen kicks your australian prime minister's arse

why do u think its called gr8 britian because we own everyone and we're not in trillions of dollars of debt like the yanks :D :D

ME

Actually murder and rape was punishable by death at the time, manslaughter was the worst criminal offense punishable by exile. The first man sentenced to exile in Australia had stolen an encyclopedia and three pickles, which was indicative of the misdemeanours most had actually performed.

verdantabyss

lol mad dog either way australians = convicts and rapists who were sent to a *beep* island to die

the end result = people like you who can't even read harry potter books without getting confused

and as for americans, everybody watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SawqX45frdU

BRITAIN KICKS ARSE


ME

[quote]lol mad dog either way australians = convicts and rapists who were sent to a *beep* island to die [/quote]

Wrong on every count, as I have already explained.

[quote]the end result = people like you who can't even read harry potter books without getting confused[/quote]

Actually the end result of a bunch of male rapists being sent to an island to die would be... nothing. (Propagation of mammals needs a male and a female and habitable conditions, you see) Rather than a first-world society with an economy that's avoided recession during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Also - I didn't actually read the book. As I mentioned in the post. And in the subject title. Which is on top of your last message. And I wasn't confused. That was you. Because you didn't know the meaning of the word 'trump'.

I've been 'arguing' with you for a little while and I've come to the conclusion that you aren't very good at it.



Utterly pointless, but I pride myself for my stoop-free debating style. My approach of trying to fight ignorance with knowledge is one doomed from the start, I know. It also bears special notice for the fact that I've never seen an online convo go SO off topic so quickly.

..wow, we really DID lose the cricket!

w00t! My first ever public cricket protection was so accurate it was like that film where they dig up the time capsule from kids in the `70s writing "Dude, a solar flare is going to destroy the entire world" which I haven't actually watched. Knowing that's the one. Australia did actually lose the Test Match, in spite of the fact that we haven't lost a match at that ground since 1934. What a fluke!

The circumstance wasn't as I predicted, though. Far from Nathan Hauritz proving to be an unmitigated embarassment to the side on this fine Summer's day, he actually proved to be the best bowler in the match. The problem was Mitchell Johnson still unable to bowl within a yard of the stumps, yet bafflingly being our 'strike bowler' - it's worth note that, although the poms claim to have scored 756 runs an incredible 56 of those were actually extras gifted to them by our own bowling attack.

Of course, the other problem is rampant cheating from the Poms, which I foolishly forgot to put into consideration.

Interestingly, despite claiming to have invented fair-play and wearing the whitest whites you will ever see in cricket or even among the new year's roster of Hollywood bad guys, the poms are such disgustingly poor sportsmen it boggles the mind that they are playing at the 'home of cricket'. To pre-empt a joke that no doubt will be going around: how do you win a Test match when you only get 16 wickets? Ask Andrew Strauss.

The 1st innings wicket of Richard Terry Ponting, and the 2nd of Simon Katich, Phillip Hughes, and Michael Hussey where complete works of fanciful fiction courtesy of the dandied bluebags on the field - and as anyone familiar with our team will note, those batsmen are all big hitters who can change the face of any game. The English, noticeably from the first match at Cardiff, have established an unsportsmanlike tactic of appealing orgasmically for the faintest of any chance of a wicket, and in this game have reaped magnificient fruit from the purest of pure arse. Ponting and Hussey did not hit their balls before they were caught (ooh-err), Katich was not facing a legitimate delivery, and Hughes, most disgracefully of all, was caught off a ball that led Andrew Strauss to impersonate Archie "The Mole" Ives from The Great Escape in his eagerness to dig it up out of the dirt.

There's also the small matter of some inconsistency in doping rules. Some may distantly remember the sudden debut of George Bradley Hogg into the test side, which many saw as a farce, in the heyday of Shane K. Warne aka "The Sultan of Spin" / "Sleaziest Dad of the Year". This happened because Warney had been imbiding some diet pills. 6 years later it's hard to read articles on the heavily-injured England side without seeing phrases like "needed four injections before he could walk on the field". Injections of painkillers, of course. And meth.

To be fair to our guys who now appear to suck royally, the match was seen as winnable at one stage. From the beginning of Day Four to it's end the bookie's odds on Australia transmutated massively - from 500 to 1 down to four against. True, we needed to break all records to win, but that's just the kind of crazy shit we love to pull off.

Obviously, though, that didn't happen and the laurels (and possibly the hardies as well) must go to Man of the Match, Andrew Flintoff, who heroically bowled over after over with more painkillers than actual blood in his system. What a trooper! And he's a paragon of humility to boot.


Worship him, WORSHIP HIM!


Obviously I don't need to tell our lads to bury the pricks at Edgbaston. But... bury the pricks in Edgbaston. COME ON!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Impromptu Lecutre of the Week: Olag Gan

From the IMDb, a thread where somebody, quite sensibly, talked about how distressed they were by Breakdown and Gan's sudden outbursts of violence. Specifically, how they'd have liked a nice resolution at the end where Gan apologises to Jenna awkardly - that would have been good, but regrettably TV folk recovered from trauma quite painlessly back then. As it is Breakdown is a cracking episode but falls short of the bucketloads of potential it has.

The conversation, unfortunately, became as predictable to Dilbert to his mother in that episode where she leaves the house and records her entire side of the conversation in advance. Thus, you shouldn't even need to read this quotes, but then I know you're going to..


well Gan is a quite disturbing character- he's a violent deranged psychopath that needed a surgical implant to stop his violent outbursts. In one of a series audio plays (can't remember the exact one) it's revealed his nickname was "cat killer". So yeah he may have seemed the gentle giant, but only because the federation made him such - and they're the bad guys? -slaintemhath (sp? does it matter?)


I thought Gan had the implant put in because he killed one of the Federation's guards who had raped his girlfriend? - DracenWolfe


In The Mark of Kane they say hes some kind of mass murderer or something. I don't really count the audios as cannon though. To me they need to be at least 18mm, armour-piercing with decent ranging shot to qualify. (HAHA, pedanitc joke, that was me. Me being Jared) - sfordcar


Oh, yeah, fucking Olag Gan. Makes me look like a decent bloke, I tell ya! - Adolf Hitler


Word. - Josef Stalin


A mother or so, though, THIS post inspired me to reply..

Gan may be the gentle giant in the series but all indications are that he was a very violent man in his past, not only from the snippits we see in the show but from thae various audio dramas that have come out in the years since. - stormlord-2


Quoth meself:
The audios, of course, being the work of Alan Stevens who has absolutely no official affiliation with this series but has written a lot of material about the idea of Gan being a violent rapist with no foundation. There is NOTHING in the series to back this up, and you need to assume that the Federation chip somehow gave him an entirely different personality for the idea to work.

(May this slip under the radar of certain Google-happy fanaudio writers...)


And today what did I see but the following dismissive response:

Fans have in the past asked why was Gan given a limiter AND sent into life long exile? Why go to the trouble of giving him a limiter if they were going to exile him anyway?

The only good answer (sic - no spelling error, but seriously who writes that?) is that he was given the limiter first, but then commited another serious crime for which he was then sentenced to exile. And if this is the case, who knows what he was like without the limiter. Perhaps the insanely violent lunatic we see in Breakdown is closer to the original Gan than the calm, peaceful Gan we see in Blakes 7? - ewgf


For some reason this provoked me to write quite a bit, which I felt like preserving here because it sums up my view of the character of Gan quite succinctly ie - the spade who was but a spade.


Why go to the trouble of giving him a limiter if they were going to exile him anyway?

1) Escape from Cygnus Alpha is improbable, but far from impossible. The number of spaceships unaccounted for by the Federation is regularly shown to be very high, and there are groups hostile to the Federation who could have similar ideas to Blake.

2) They probably would like some insurance against a man who has killed armed guards with his bare hands in the past doing the same to the guards on the prison shuttle.

3) The Federation does like to sanitize its fascist regime in the early stories to the public - a policy of implanting limiters in all murderers for the exile would be the kind of detail to make the public think they acted in their interests. (Note Gan was the only one who had killed before, prior to the later retcon involving Avon's life as a gangster)

And if this is the case, who knows what he was like without the limiter.

Well nobody on the show says it was the case, and I doubt the answer would be yourself.

(GRATUITOUS CONDESCENSION!)

Perhaps the insanely violent lunatic we see in Breakdown is closer to the original Gan than the calm, peaceful Gan we see in Blakes 7?

Uh-huh. Which beggars the question of how the hell he could not be shot down if he was just rampaging like an animal in Federation territory.

Please note the prisoners spend months together, and Vila has a handle on who has committed what crimes, demonstrating that word gets around about these things. And that the prisoners are more wary of Avon than Gan, who Vila, the ultimate coward, becomes quite chummy with.

Also, compare to Roj Blake. The Federation's absolute #1 enemy. They DO work on re-building his personality. Does it work? Erm, not really. They're unable to change his basic outlook on the little people, truth, justice any of the things he truly cares about, none of his passions. They need to rely on subterfuge to mislead Blake into thinking that he IS doing right, and it all comes tumbling down like a house of cards quite easily. Presumably the Federation would have had all their best brain experts on the case... and they failed.

And yet... for some reason when it comes to little ol' Olag Gan the Federation are able to ingeniously re-write every ounce of his personality... and strangely instead of turning this muscle-bound killing machine cum psychopath into an agent on their own side, they transform him into a friendly, amicable, slow-witted, patient gent who is very notably nice to ladies and loyal. BEFORE exiling him, which I believe was part of your argument in the first place.

I don't have to mention Occam's Razor, surely?


Really, the idea of Gan's dark and violent past, chock full of broken bones, rapings, pillagings and felinicide is something that I actually find just as equally dreary as repellant, the end result of sci-fi fans who have become so fixated on the ridiculous assumption that grit = quality. Thus Gan is somehow boring until he becomes like every other psychopathic anti-hero to appear... based on NOTHING but scenes where we're explicity told something's gone wrong and his murder impulses are being actively stimulated. To turn this into the bloke wanted to kill and/or rape everyone on the ship, you need a very sad and pitiful one-track imagination or a wanton and morally bankrupt cynicism that stretches across the entire human race.

So stay away from Blakes 7. Assuming Sky ever gets their act together.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

R.I.P. OG

It just occurred to me that I haven't made any message about what a shame it is that Outpost Gallifrey (operating as it is under the name Doctor Who Forum now, so as to make it more accessible to semi-literate scum who just want to cause trouble) will be closing. Or has closed. Not sure, for the same reason I haven't made a post - the site has sucked for a year at the least, but I really shouldn't let that override all the good times that have been there in general.

Until Sparacus took it over entirely, the Mythmakers was a great, relaxing place to wile away an afternoon (though I never got to experience it truly pre-infection, which was a real shame) with like-minded people, and also to mock the complete literary ineptitude of a certain Colchesterian schoolteacher.

The Classic Series brought on some very interesting discussion, the type of stuff you only get when something has been talked about for 30+ years, and all the obvious things have been canvassed. No doubt there was wankery involved here heavily - elevating Brain of Morbius to the level of literature based on some supposed recurring 'motifs' and describing it's bewildering climax of 'the Doctor and a man in a suit made from doormats stare at old publicity photos' as 'the finest conclusion in classic series history' can only be described as SAYWHAT??? But at the least I managed to convert people to my way of thinking by explaining why the ending of Claws of Axos made perfect sense, and their retardation was the sole reason they thought otherwise.

The Leisure Hive... well I barely ever went there unless Spara posted something 'adult', but when I was still in the tail-end of high school it provided an area to round off my sex education completely by many good dissertations on the mating habits of gay men. If I ever make that fatal conversion I'll know which public toilets to frequent and a healthy amount of glory-hole etiquette.

Enlightenment, before the intelligent people ditched the forum like rats leaving a sinking ship, was terrific at its best. There were some fascinating games to be played, my favourite being re-writing a section of the novelisation in the style of another author. (The only problem being that there are only so many famous authors, and even then only so many who have a distinctive style - if I was try Kathy Reichs doing The Daemons for example, the joke would simply be that the writing is agonisingly inept with shithouse dialogue, which could be any number of best-selling authors) The fascinating aspect of this sub-forum was the small details of the story that would get pored over.

Characters and Actors was generally dull, though it did provide the ocassional thread full of as-good-as-porn-to-us photographs of Nicola, Lalla and Katy so it needs some props.

The Life Outside of Doctor Who section, which I think was called The Space-Time Vortex or something, was good fun as well. If ever I had a specific question in an odd little field that I couldn't answer then there was a good place to go, and it was great for saving me from registering on other, specific forums.

The General Discussion and New Series sections had a couple of good years before becoming the site's festering, gangrenous sphincter so I should give them that much.

It just occurred to me that for a site that gave me a lot of friends and brought me in to contact with people like Jon Blum, Nev Fountain, Alan Stevens (I don't hold it against them), David A. McIntee, Gary Russell (short temper, whew!), Conrad Westmaas, and so many others, I haven't paid proper respects for it's passing. In a world where the line drawn between 'television' and 'reality' is meant to be so strong, it's surreal to remember getting a PM from the bloke who wrote Dead Ringers apologising for spoiling the end of Doomsday (must... resist... cheap-shot against episode..) and the humbling possibility that some of my caustic remarks could have brought Murray Gold to tears or made Noel Clarke swear to kill all Doctor Who fans with his bare hands. (It's unlikely, though - I didn't say that much about them... also I NEVER threatened to rape Helen Raynor in a dark alley... damn, why did that come across as a suspiciously specific denial? Seriously, I didn't.)

Shout out to:

Colin 'Doc Filth' Hicks
Miles 'Man Miles' Reid
Cameron J. 'Cameron J. Mason', 'I am a published author' Mason
The Secretive Bus
TheRani (err..I think)
DrLorenzo
Johnstone
Howard Weinstein
Andy Frankham
Andrew 'Wilf' Phillips
Bernie Fishnotes (who apparently found that weird obituary thing I wrote on Google and was confused the fuck out. Understandable, mate)
Joshua 'Lemon Bloody Cola', 'Joshua Wynne is a cunt' Wynne
Mark 'Sparacus' 'Whovianologist' 'A writer' Goacher
Ewen 'Youth of Australia', ' The Big N' , 'Fugitoid', 'Man Miles', 'Notyoa', 'I have been banned for life six times from this site' Campion-Clarke

And others, I am sure, whose names are not leaping to me right at the moment. You were all.. pretty cool. Yes, even Sparacus had his moments.

I'd be lying if I said I'll miss the place, but I'll continue missing the community that it used to be at a time when I was wallowing in a very deep depression and needed everything there was to help me get through it. RIP.

Friday, July 17, 2009

For the sake of completion

It's odd that I don't have a review of Planet of the Dead up, I reflect. Once I remember that the story exists. And I did start writing one. It went badly. Here's the black box recording, with some new material added at the end.



Jared reviews...

..oh, fuck, what's it called?


You know what I mean, the new Doctor Who thing. With David Tennant. Bus. Lee Evans. The girl from Jekyll. UNIT. Did I mention the bus? Desert. Flies. Bus. Bus driver. Forcefield. Gratuitous coprophage captured on screen in gory detail. On a bus. Girls gone wild.

Planet of the Dead! That was it. Not that I'm suggesting it's forgettable or anything. Or am I? I'm seriously at a bit of a loss. Recently my head's been feeling like there's a Lebanese man with unsavoury habits, Tourettes and a megaphone living inside. It's what I imagine the thought processes of somebody who's been on drugs for his whole life would be, but in my case I think it would have to be the result of constant unintentional sleep deprivation. Though recently I was wondering about the idea of constant computer use resulting in radiation poisoning of the brain...

But perhaps it's something else? Am I in fact suffering from dire Doctor Who withdrawals? I have, after all, got a pretty steady hit for the past four years. Okay, I may have screamed angrily about quite a bit of it, but then I AM a junkie in this metaphor and we're allowed to do that. We hate the drug as much as we love it. We hate it for having control of our life but we love the places it takes us so we don't dare give it up.

It can't be that bad, you say? Surely you can't be that weird, Jared? Let me tell you something... I've been writing this entire post with my eyes closed. That isn't a lie. I can't keep my eyes open any longer staring at this screen. But I know where all the keys are. A moment ago when I wrote 'eyes' I made a typo and backspaced and corrected it. Without even looking. Does that feak you out? DOES IT?

Man, I should so be going to bed right now. But the word on the street is that people have been dissing my gear. Claims that Planet of the Dead isn't the premium shit that my dealer told me that it was. I cannot abide this. It is not cut with no half-assed fertilizer shit or whatever you jive monkey fools be trying to pin on me. This is the real, the deal, the steal, the sale of the fucking century...

No... fuck it the drug metaphor is over and it really is time to go to bed...

ONE RESTFUL NIGHT LATER...


Sigh, I had the weirdest dream. And you were there, and you were there, and Miles was there which was kind of unusual, and I was typing stuff into a computer with my eyes closed...

Aw crap.

In my defense:

1) This is a personality-driven blog, whenever it is driven at all.

2) I'm currently reading A Scanner Darkly and it freaks me the fuck out.

3) It isn't a particularly motivating story to write about.

Also I have been rather mentally odd recently.. and at other times but that goes without saying.

So.. Planet of the Dead. You see, the Doctor shacks up with the nurse with Jekyll, because he's tired of relationships with the taint of 'creepy old man' especially when people learn that Tennant's in the lower rung of his thirties in spite of looking at most 16 years old, and also because she has tits that look large no matter what clothing is on in top. This union, born as it is out of the loins of Golgamaresh, Norse god of mid-immortality crises, can not last. When they decide to celebrate the nailing to a cross of their least favourite Jewish man by stealing priceless artefacts things take a turn for the worse and the Hot Fuzz of London Town is hot on their heels, and the Doctor is forced to kill a bus driver and abduct an entire double-decker onto an alien planet, pretending that some OTHER evil alien bastards are behind it as an elaborate cover story.

Luckily, UNIT will buy anything the Doctor tells them, especially know that they've hired Prof. Nevil Fountain as their chief scientific officer who sleeps only in a custom doona he has made from supergluing photos of the Doctors various incarnations onto his old regular doona, a process that he describes in rather too much painstaking detail. I felt that these fifteen minutes of screentime would have been better used to further the plot in some way, and why does the set for his van look so much like the Blue Peter studio?

After umpteen scenes of the Doctor and Michelle Ryan shagging, they find out that, incredibly, the ARE in mortal danger - from a pack of fly headed bastards. They are very much unlike humans, and thus are evil and deserve to die. After the Doctor has strangled every last one to death, they see yet ANOTHER threat of gigantic flying carniverous silverfish coming to kill the Earth - well they could only do that if the Doctor had stupidly opened a portal to a world with six billion people inside. Which, Michelle reminds him, he DID.

Fortunately, an ancient gold pot is capable of turning the bus into The Magic Schoolbus, which only goes to explain why they kept it so heavily guarded, eh? The Doctor gets a bit sidetracked and joyrides in it for half an hour, in spite of the fact that he only had to drive it twelve feet to the portal and their lives are kind of in extreme danger here.

Furthermore, Prof Fountain is unable to close the gateway in time, as he is too involved in his experiments to couple and procreate with his Rose Tyler action figures. But... it gets closed somehow, I don't know. There's just a big enough pause to create some tension. Fountain then runs out to dry hump the Doctor until they need the jaws of life to separate them. The person who isn't the Brig decides that she's had enough of this shit and so calls in Prof. Miles... who instantly stabs the Doctor with a butcher knife while screaming "You were the chosen one!", then giving a disseration on Ulysses that concludes the book actually doubles as a sequel to The Wheel in Space and a translation of Necromnicon before admitting that he doesn't really know what he's talking about before.

As he lies dying from massive haemorraghing, token Psychic Black Woman tells the Doctor that she doesn't think he has much time left. Michelle Ryan steals the Magic School Bus, explaining that she was only involved with the Doctor for the cool alien gizmos and the alien tech. Heartbroken and slowly dying, the Doctor announces that this was his worst adventure ever.


In all seriousness, PoD was fairly entertaining when viewed in the right light. Context is a big problem, however and it shows up how naive RTD's idea of the year of specials and how it would make fandom more appreciative was. Calling it selfish would definitely be a mean stretch, but in this case it is clear that the main purpose is to give the production team a rest - which wouldn't be a problem at all if they weren't stretched across three different shows. The simple fact is PoD is another episode in a season entirely in the way that it's written, it only reaches the hour mark by swathes of what is obviously padding and the trademark I-am-so-fucking-sick-of-this reeeeally long, drawn out RTD ending.

There is quite a bit of criticism of story endings in the old series, a lot of them just ending on the explosion of alien city of the week, but I like things to end in the midst of action then to linger on while the Doctor has an emotional- or expositional-conclusion session with all the guest cast still standing at the end. Compare these to what is often acknowledged as one of the greatest story endings in the show's history, in Warriors of the Deep (an ending so good even that production couldn't fuck it up) The action climax is only a few seconds old, because the countdown to nuclear holocaust has just been averted by the Doctor at great effort that's nearly killed him. He surveys the dead bodies strewn throughout the room and says simply "There should have been another way".

Not to be too negative but had RTD done this scene there would have been a lot of consoling going on, the companions telling the Doctor it wasn't his fault, crying, nashing of teeth, a reprimand to Bulis that bastard who didn't stop pumping the Hexachromite - but would it have added anything at all to the story? An intelligent audience can fill in those gaps, we know the characters well enough to draw such conclusions. One line was all that was needed - anything more would be overkill.

Aside from that, what are the problems with PotD:

* Aliens aren't given a fair go - the Doctor doesn't put much effort into helping the Fly-men and the reason given for them all to die is a tad on the half-arsed side.

* Inconsistent portrayal of Lady Whatserface, seems to be the result of two writers pulling in different directions

* Completely wasted location-shooting, as the entire story planet looks like it was done on blue screen anyway.

* Lee Evans given too much rope

* Morally bankrupt ending, as we're shown that so long as you do it for the sake of fun, criminal activity is a-ok. Also, girls, it's cool to recruit criminals by fucking them and subsequently selling them out to the cops. And why does the Doctor leave ALL his companions with some incredible tech?

The story is one to make you nod sagely when you hear Yahtzee Croshaw's criticism of the new series, which he describes as having "everyone alternate between licking the Doctor's balls and begging for more".

And sorry, Ewen, Waters of Mars does look cool.

Ashes 2nd Test Prediction

Here purely so I have something to fall back on to say "ahahahaha I was RIGHT!" later on. Although you can use the dates to say you wrote stuff at any time on this website, so even then it's pointless. I just can't be arsed to join a forum where people care about this.

Anyway, the centrepiece of my view is the fact that Ricky Ponting is an ass who doesn't learn from the mistakes of the past, like Wile E. Coyote using bowlers instead of giant anvils. Firstly, he continues to use Mitchell Johnson to open the bowling, in spite of the fact that Johnson has NEVER looked dangerous in the opening overs in spite of his faint resemblance to Frankenstien's monster - his radar needs significantly more warm-up time than most players, leaving him bowling a lot of stupid deliveries that get punched away easily.

At Cardiff, Peter Siddle, the walking chunk of red-headed muscle with a chipmunk graveyard of teeth, should have opened the other end, bowling as he does balls that threaten to kill you. Now at Lords, the entire make-up of the team is wrong, wrong, wrong.

Well, actually that's me exaggerating - there's one player who shouldn't be there, and that's Nathan Hauritz, in spite of the fact that he was the hero of the last match. Ponting's problem is that he's both conservative and trying to forge his own team - his conservatism and love for his own players leads him to think that he can't go without fielding a specialist spinner, ignoring the fact that the pitch at Lords is a paceman's dream and that he actually has THREE spinners in the batting lineup anyway who have all taken test match wickets before.

As if god wanted to re-inforce this message yesterday, Hauritz dislocated a finger of a nasty catch attempt and Michael Clarke took the wicket of Paul Collingwood. Yes, GOD HATES YOU, Ponting!

The pitch needs to be seen as a factor in a game, especially when it's green and a crazy unique field like Lords' that none of your bowling attack have played on before. As noted several times by the commentators last night, Lords is quite bizarre in that it's actually been erected in a sloping paddock, with the obvious problem that one boundary is very easy to score off so any bowler needs to be careful with their line.

So, who's a bowler who's careful with their line and length? Who's played at Lords before? Who's averaged 17.03 against England? At 2.02 runs an over? And 23 wickets? And is currently employed handing out the drinks to the other players?

Stuart Rupert Clarke. Otherwise known as "King of English Nightmare Fuel Unleaded".



Damn it, man, look scarier!

Anyway, if that Psychotic coked-out killing machine opened the bowling with Hilfenhaus we'd all be having crumpets and tea in the bombed out remnants of London town right now. As it is, this damn war will stretch on till Christmas... (ie we're not going to win at Lords', I reckon - though I doubt the Poms will win either, because they suck)


Edit: I do hate to crow about things like this but COCK-A-DOODLE-DOO, motherfucker! Australia ended day two with barely over a hundred-and-fifty runs for eight wickets down, a collapse the like of which you'll barely ever see from Banglafuckingdesh, currently we're going to need to struggle to avoid the follow-on (eg, having a score so terrible that the opposition captain has the right to humiliate you further by sending you out again to bat until you get it RIGHT! like in the Goodies' bean ads)

At this point, a drawn match looks like the best-case scenario. All this translates to I Was Right, which is the important factor.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Test Card Post

Phrases like The explosion was aggravated because the blockage in question comprised numerous gas-filled condoms. Please don't ask me to explain. are why I am currently moderately addicted to the webpage tvtropes.org, a site which attempts to catalogue all commonly used tropes throughout pretty much every popular media, giving them pithy names and loads of examples into the bargain. One of the many factors in why I haven't posted anything, along with small issues like not being sure that I have anything meaningful to actually say.


Among the mish-mash:


* The award for the most disappointing newstory in the world goes to Emma Watson. Naturally as one who had been keeping half an eye on the countdown timer to when she was of legal age (incidentally, there was a couple of things morally wrong about her scenes in the dress in Goblet of Fire by our society - which just goes to show why society sucks) I had to have more detail when I read about her 'wardrobe malfunction' on Letterman. Sadly the gap-toothed one did not tear off her ill-chosen one-piece dress with no underwear and chase her around the set while Paul Schaffer played Yakkity-Sax instead...

brace yourselves...

...her knickers were visible. Good lord, is this the sort of thing which makes a controversy now? Have you people never SEEN the Pertwee era?


* The most disturbing things you can find online are doubtless Zimbabwean blogs*. Perhaps that's why Google doesn't really look through them and it was only through the use of various alternate websites I was even able to find them, and then indavertently.

This is because as bad as Robert Mugabe is, Mugabe supporters are even worse. They are crazy, crazy people. As somebody who sees through propaganda and advertising easily, I am always alarmed to see people who swallow it hook, line, and sinker and these people are the prime example. Tsvangerai is going to hand the country to the highest bidder, apparently, whether they be Dutch, American or French. He is evil and needs to be stopped. Etcetera etcetera etcetera. If I believed in God the sites would make me thank him that I was never born in Africa...

(*This is entirely incorrect. You can find the list of websites the Australian government intends to plan, child pornography, any number of other pornographies which will offend you, and episodes of Fringe. I use hyperbole twelve million times per second.)


* Finally have a copy of Watchmen. Damn that's a good film.


* As of this morning, contemplated the question on everyone's mind: Warwick Davis or Nabil Shaban for king of the Little People? (Apologies to David Rappaport, Verne Troyer, Jimmy Vee, Big Mick, that guy from Carnivale whose name I can never remember, Kenny Baker and Danny Woodburn) Warwick probably wins, as usual.

Also, does Danny DeVito count, or is he slightly too tall? And where are the little women? They had a book written about them for Christ's sake...


* Oh, I have a new DVD drive. So if there happens to be anyone out there I promised a disc to a month or so ago I can get right on it. Ahem.


* NEW MONKEY ISLAND GAME! NEW MONKEY ISLAND GAME! THERE'S A NEW MONKEY ISLAND GAME!

I know you don't care. But... THERE'S A NEW MONKEY ISLAND GAME! And it's written by one of the guys who made the really shit one from a couple of years ago. The hope is helping to slice through my +10 cynicism...


* Oh, yeah. My Grandma's getting married. For the third time. (Oh, it's okay, the other ones just died) To a ninety year old man with dementia. So while it's unlucky for the bride to see the groom before the ceremony it's probably equally unlucky for the groom not to see the bride. I'm hoping someone will be around the guy with a photograph saying "This is the woman you're about to marry - remember her?"

Very sadly I won't be able to attend the ceremony in Coff's Harbour, as the house needs sitting. (Yes, yes yes! AHAHAHAAHA! Kiss my arse, social hell!)


* I worked at a library for four weeks as part of my course. If I learnt one thing in that time... librarians like cake.

WE LOST THE CRICKET! (Sorry, it's that time of year)


If the corpse of Englaish cricket is improbably still twitching after being famously cremated over a hundred years ago, then there are 101 reasons to take your carpet-beaters, golf-clubs and sodomy to the corpse as the Ashes are here to remind us that aside from the WWII heros, writers, James Bond and the blokes who make Doctor Who all poms are complete pricks. It's official - the poms are winning the series. Not in the actual terms of the game, of course, but rather in the fact that they managed to make the match a draw which they consider to be exactly the same thing.

Unexpectedly the villain of the piece wasn't Kevin Pietersen, the cocky Saaaaarth-Effriken batsman, nor Paul Collingwood, the rodent-faced gentleman of stunted growth who lacks the imagination to actually hit the ball, and not even Graeme "Fucking" Swann, the roguish, unwashed alleged spin-bowler who, if nothing else, deserves to have a run in with the poor horse whose teeth he stole. No, the villain of the piece was the English physiotherapist who made several unwelcome trips to the field to deliberately slow the game down, and this was exacerbated due to the fact the fellow in question had gigantic man-boobs to rival those of Meat Loaf in Fight Club. Please pretend I didn't say that if it turns out he is actually a former testicular cancer patient, naturally. But even if that's the case, he's still a prick. Or at least, the shadowy figure sending him constantly onto the pitch with no reason at all was...


Okay, which one was it?



That said, Australia weren't quite blameless. This will mean nothing to people who don't really give half a metric toss for the game, but the new ball had to go to Siddle. Or, to rephrase that, if the new ball had to go to any one man, it needed to be one named Siddle. A ginger-headed Victorian named Peter had the most convincing claimant to spherical play equipment possession. And, if you will allow me to vent AAARGHFUCKITPONTINGGIVEHIMTHEBALLAAAARGHYOUFUCK! - an exact quote from myself circa 3 a.m this morning.

Mitchell Johnson was instead elected to bowl, but seemed to be simply throwing the ball in the direction of girls in the crowd he found hot ignoring the pitch entirely. Sadly, nobody got Eve Myles to shuffle across into a squarer position.

Oh, yes, my friends that was the amazing thing about this match - it was the first ever Ashes test match to be played in CARDIFF. Now, at first glance there didn't actually seem to be any particular Rift activity besmirching the day's play, but when you looked closely at the crowd there were a few signs of odd behaviour, a bit like the Wizards trying-to-look-like Muggles scenes in Harry Potter, except these weren't in a poorly-thought-out kid's book so made less sense via context.

It is just possible that is an odd parochial piece of behaviour, as the Aussies in the crowd were dressed sensibly, in full-body banana costumes and the like, with my favourite being a morbidly obese man's T-shirt bearing the legend "I ATE ALL THE PIES", reminiscent of Serena Williams new victory T-shirt "ARE YOU CHECKING OUT MY TITLES?". Some of the outfits seen in the crowd defy explanation..

* First, there's the sensible. A quartet of men in orange jumpsuits with flashlight hardhats, even with some quaint fake-soot rubbed over the face. It's in Wales, that makes sense.

* Secondly, two very butch looking men, one in a bride outfit, the other dressed as Vicki Pollard (that's the name, isn't it?) from Little Britain. Two vague-ish explanations - an insult to Catherine Tait, by comparing her to Matt Lucas' most famous character, or the guy got confused and forgot that Daffyd is the Welsh character. Or the costume shop was just out of Daffyds...

* As one of the last note on the reasonable camp, we have several men wearing styrofoam hats designed to resemble dragons. I presume, at any rate.

* A bloke in a Fred Flinstone outfit. This made no sense at all until I realised, via the Barmy Army's regimental trumpeteer in the crowd playing the Flinstone theme every time that Andrew "Freddy" Flintoff bowled, that he had been nicknamed after everyone's favourite Neathanderal man. The man in a giant Sylvester the Cat outfit sitting next to him made considerably less sense.

* A man in drag as the Queen. Funny how the girls don't seem to get in on this lark.

* Plenty of men in hawaiin shirts with leys - not sure if these were actual costumes or just people making the most of those lovely 16 degree English Summer days.

* What was possibly a giant squirrel outfit, but just seeing it caused my father and I to exclaim "What the fuck is that?"

* Four Spidermen, travelling in groups around the back of the crowd. It was if a commando raid was being planned.

* Similarly, four Wheres Wallys, complete with canes. Unfortunately no sign of Wilma, Wizard Whitebeard or Odlaw...

* Finally, what appeared to be a severely depressed fifty-year old banker and his son in matching clown outfits. (No makeup) Dad suggests that he may have lost a bet, which is quite a sensible suggestion...


As a final note, in the resultant euphoria and migration of fair-weather fans to the side of Nathan Hauritz, I want to say that I supported the little fellow back when everyone said he was the worst player on the side. Unfortunately I never put it in writing so I'll simply look like one of their ranks. OH THE SEARING HOT IRONY!!!!

Incidentally, the fact that this can be considered a blog sickens me. Are there so few of us who set out to write more than seven sentences on a subject? Sigh.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

OH MY GOD!

The woman who played Mrs Slocombe died. Er, er... hurry!


Has anyone checked up on her pussy?

*DING*

Her.. pussy will be sorely missed..

*BE-BEOW*

Oh crap, that was a single entendre. Erm... is pussy rotting and gangrenous or are they going to emblam her.. I mean, it.. no, or do I mean her? What gender is the pussy? Anyone?

*BE-BEOW*

Goddamnit! Errr... Mr Humphreys is a queer!

*BE-BEOW*

Okay... will the pussy be there at the.. erm, open casket thing?

(Pause)

*DING*

Phew, just made it with that one. Hmm... most of the time she died of a long illness it was the fault of the American Airforce?

*BE-BEOW*

Screw you Wikipedia! That punchline doesn't work out of context!

*BE-BEOW*

Hey, that wasn't a joke attempt. Okay... let's hope her pussy is still alright?

*DING*

Yeah! I'm on fire! Just like her pussy... if you rubbed deep-heat onto it..

*BE-BEOW*

Argh! How did they do one of these EVERY episode? Will.. her pussy... still find it's way home? Like the tongue in the beer ad. Or maybe not. Because we're ostensibly talking about a cat.

*BE-BEOW*

Okay, Jared, your time's up.

Uh-huh, and how'd I do?

Terribly!

Yeah...

Unbelievably bad. Only three semi-workable double-entendres in one eulogy for Mrs Slocombe. So you miss out on the speedboat.

That's what I figured...

And on the other two-dozen prizes

But there's some kind of consolation prize, surely?

Not really. Except that it'd be great if you gave an actor from Studio 5 a ride to the hospital.

Studio 5? They're doing A Midsummer Night's Dream, aren't they?

Yeah.

What's wrong with him?

We're not sure, he keeps blacking out. Lots of people have heard that he's been scoring heroin, though, so it's best to be on the safe side.

So... let me get this straight. Because I've been bad, I get a smacked Bottom?

Listen, punk, anyone can do it with a setup like that. Now get the hell out of here.