Posted on May 26th, 2019
It's a fine day in Westeros... because a special Game of Thrones edition of Bullet Sunday starts... now...
As I mentioned last week, I thought that the series finale of Game of Thrones was "Seven years of complex characters and world-building tossed away for a rushed and unsatisfying conclusion." And further thought on the matter hasn't changed my mind. The series showed exceptional moments of brilliance for years, then fell apart... badly... in the final act.
So let's talk about that, shall we?
BUT BEFORE YOU PROCEED, A WARNING... I am spoiling everything, so if you have any interest whatsoever in the show and may want to watch it one day, better get on that before proceeding.
Alrighty then. Final warning... because spoilers abound.
I don't know what I expected in the final season, but it sure wasn't this mess. A friend on Facebook called it "...a boring wet fart of an ending," and that kinda sums it up for me. So much time, patience, and care taken to set things up and then... poof... nuthin.
No final showdown between Cersei and Arya. No payoff to Bran's whole three-eyed-raven ordeal. A rushed, shoe-horned, sub-par conclusion to the Night King drama. Characters shoved aside, discarded, then shit on. It just goes on and on.
Right up until the very end I was hoping that something... anything would materialize to salvage this awful season. In the week before Episode 6 I remember thinking... "Say! Maybe the first five episodes didn't happen and it's just Bran looking into the future to see how things turn out? Maybe we'll come back and find that he has decided that Cersei should get the throne because her unborn child will one day bring the lasting peace and prosperity that The Seven Kingdoms so desperately needs? Yeah. Maybe that's how it will go!" But, of course, that was just too much to hope for.
Since the entire show was made powerful by its characters, I've decided to present my thoughts on Season 8 along those lines. So without further ado...
• Tyrion. The smartest character in the show had some pretty dumb moments in Season 8, but remained the smartest character on the show when it came to taking out Dany and laying out the future of Westeros at the end. But I can honestly say that the reason I was okay with how his character closed out the series was not because of how the character was written, it was entirely because of how Peter Dinklage performed the material. I was a huge fan long before Game of Thrones came along, and to see him in a role that will get him the recognition he deserves is the most satisfying thing to come out of this season (or any season, really). If he is not winning all the awards this year, it will be a horrendous injustice.
• Bran. He spent years developing amazing abilities that one assumed would all be leading to something. But they were completely ignored. At the battle with the Night King he warged into ravens and flew around surveying the fighting, but nothing was done with the information, essentially making him a VCR recording events. I kept waiting for him to warg into Drogon and stop the madness of Dany’s brutal attack on King’s Landing, but it never happened. That being said, I certainly wasn’t upset with him becoming king... not just because of all the reasons Tyrion laid out... but because he was one of the least horrible characters left.
• Arya. By far my favorite character on the show, Arya was given years of training and a mission. When she killed the Night King and saved the world, it wasn’t so she could be a hero, it was because the Night King was the way of her revenge. So what happens when she finally gets the opportunity? She is scared away by bricks falling out of a wall. This has to be the most inexcusably, lame, shitty example of lazy character abandonment that I’ve ever seen. Her decision to see what’s “West of Westeros” at the end was about the only sensible thing left for her after she was discarded from the show in such a stupid manner. And don’t even get me started on her being unfulfilled as a character until she slept with Gendry. Really? No women in the writer’s room when this was thought up?
• Sansa. Wants The North to be a separate kingdom she can rule because the Men of the North have kneeled enough and should never be made to kneel again. Then has all the Men and Women of The North kneel as she takes the throne? Sure. Okay. Whatever. I actually liked the way that Sansa’s character progressed. She endured great hardship to become smarter and stronger, ultimately going from naive window dressing to a wise and crafty ruler for her people. I wouldn’t have minded if she ended up on The Iron Throne, but never thought it felt like her destiny. Personally, I was hoping that she would make some kind of great sacrifice in the final season. She somehow gives her life so the people of Westeros could live. That kind of thing. But having the consolation prize of her own independent kingdom is okay, I guess. Seems a bit silly though. If Sansa gets her own kingdom, then why not all the other houses too? The North sacrificed the most in the war against the Night King that they get special treatment? I dunno. Sounds like a forced happy ending so the three remaining Stark kids get happy endings. Lame.
• Jon. Of all the Stark’s, I found Jon’s ending to be the most satisfying. Especially since he was reunited with Ghost at the end (though why the direwolf would want anything to do with him after being so callously discarded earlier is beyond me). Ultimately he pretty much got what he deserved. That he ignored his banishment to the Night Watch to live beyond the wall with his Wildling friends is a curious decision, as that was part of the agreement that kept Grey Worm from obliterating as much as Westeros as he could manage. Wanna bet he also ignores the mandate that he doesn’t marry or father children? Here’s hoping that Grey Worm doesn’t care about keeping up with events across the Narrow Sea, or Bran’s rule may be a short one.
• Daenerys. There are those who say that anybody who didn’t see her complete collapse into madness and violence coming wasn’t paying attention. I could not disagree more. Yes, she was ruthless TO HER ENEMIES and became a cold and calculating ruler... but she pretty much had to be to get out of the situation she was in. And I get that aspect of her character. But to brutally murder the innocent people of King’s Landing in the most gruesome way possible? Really? That goes against everything she was shown to be working towards for seven seasons. And then to twist is at the very end and make her seem like she was PMS bat-shit crazy with her ranting about how Cersei made her kill all those people... after they had clearly surrendered? How many women were in the writer’s room for that nonsense? I never wanted Dany on the Iron Throne. But to have her character be abandoned and shit on like this after giving her the strength to escape from a horrible beginning? Shameful. Not that she would have been a great leader after how stupid they made her. Seriously? No advanced scouts to see what's happening at Dragonstone before you march your entire army back? She deserved to lose yet another dragon and have her army beat to shit for that bit of dumbassery. At least she learned how to fly low then high then low then high to avoid the scorpion crossbows for the rematch, so she's not a total dumbass. But still a pretty big one.
• Drogon. So... smart enough to melt the Iron Throne in a “If mommy can’t have it, nobody can” kinda way... but not smart enough to figure out what happened and avenge her death? Did he think that the Iron Throne stabbed her? Okay then. Still pissed that Bran never got to warg into Drogon (how awesome would that have been?) but it’s implied that may yet happen... COMPLETELY OFF-SCREEN! Blergh.
• Cersei. I read somewhere that Lena Headly got paid $1 million per episode for Season 8. Then they took her character... one of the most complex, tragic, powerful, and systematically evil to ever grace a television screen... and had her stare out a fucking window. Then, as if that weren’t insult enough, they discarded her as an idiot and spineless moron who got buried by rocks. One of the most wasted opportunities of the show. I wanted my showdown between Arya and Cersei where she would have at least gotten some juicy material to go out on.
• Jaime. Why didn’t they just kill him off in Season 7? He was completely and totally wasted in Season 8.
• Brienne. Good Lord. One of the most badass women characters on the show, and yet she suffered the same pathetic fate as all the other badass women on the show... discarded. One minute she’s a brave and fearless knight who is the very definition of a character defying stereotypes... then the next minute she’s a sobbing wreck of an abandoned girlfriend who lost her virginity to a love she could never have. Seriously. Not ONE woman in the writer’s room for this garbage? I guess they thought tossing her a bone as Lord Commander of the Kingsguard would make fans happy. But could fans of her character ever be happy with how things turned out for her? Not even if they made her Queen. Pathetic.
• Tormund. An interesting character with so many possibilities ultimately relegated to background material for Jon Snow to be an idiot. Great. Just great. I know I’m not the only one who hoped that he would end up with The Large Woman. What’s so cool is that they didn’t make him an obsessive weirdo about it though. He wanted to be with Brienne, she didn’t reciprocate, he and his broken heart moved on. You know, like a sane person.
• Melisandre. One of the few women who actually got a satisfying conclusion, her exit from the show was everything you could possibly want. The job she was preparing to take on for centuries was done, what else was there? Free from the dictates of the Lord of Light at last.
• Samwell. To make him such a key background player for so long only to have him be shoved aside after revealing Jon’s lineage seemed like such an inexplicable move. That was what his entire arc was leading to this whole time? That’s it? I mean, sure, as the last remaining Tarly he gets that house, but there’s nothing to indicate he’s going to be remotely competent as a leader. On the contrary, his bumbling and misplaced compassion will probably just lead to even further ruin. Like so many other characters, Samwell was thrown (throne?) a bone that makes no sense at all.
• Gendry. The guy I ultimately wanted to sit on the Iron Throne because I always thought he was the most deserving of it. I guess giving him the lordship of Storm’s End was a nice consolation prize... but the pining after Arya was a silly-ass thing to inject into the character.
• Missandei. One could argue that Missandei was what kept Dany’s sanity in check, and losing her was the last straw leading to madness, but that’s a huge disservice to both characters. Okay, characters needed to die to illustrate that war isn’t pretty. I get that. And so far as deaths go on Game of Thrones, she got a pretty good one. But was she always nothing more than a fucking grenade pin to the writers after all these years? Once again, where were the women writers on this fucking show?
• Grey Worm. His character may have been disappointing, but at least he was consistent right to the end. But then everything changed. It’s as if the writers suddenly realized that there were all these Unsullied and Dothraki hanging around on Westeros, and didn’t know what to do with them. Packing up their shit and headed back to Essos was always in the cards, but it’s as if no real thought went into how that might happen. If you asked me what would happen to Grey Worm in Season 7, I’d tell you that after the war he returns to Essos with Missandei and becomes a great and just ruler for his people. But after Season 8 where he became a psychopath who was “just acting on orders?” I hope to God when he gets back home that there’s a better alternative than him to run things. I mean, holy shit!
• Lyanna Mormont. Of all the characters on the show, this right here is the one that really put my love for all things Game of Thrones over the top. As the ruler of Bear Island, she was wise and brave beyond her years, which was a lot of fun to watch. I actually think her death in the Battle of Winterfell was pretty good, but boy oh boy would I have loved to have her be at that final council to determine the future of Westeros!
• Davos. The best smuggler of the Seven Realms became Master of Ships. Alrighty then.
• Theon. He went out a hero buying Arya enough time to arrive and save the world, so what more could you ask? His life was pretty much at a dead-end and he knew it. That he decided to bravely be where he was most needed even though it was a suicide mission ties up his redemption arc in exactly the right way.
• Euron. Make no mistake... I wanted the asshole dead... but how about in a way that made any sense at all? One minute he’s fighting on the water out in the middle of nowhere, then he unleashes hereunto unknown Aquaman-like swimming powers to make it to shore for a lame battle with Ser Jaime. Hardly the brutal end he deserved.
• Yara. Gets to be queen of the Iron Islands after every man in the way was killed off for her. I’m not saying she didn’t earn it... on the contrary, she was clearly the best person for the job... but once again we have this inexplicable decision to take strong female characters and discard them. How fucking hard is it to let strong female characters keep being strong female characters? How much more satisfying would it have been... how fucking easy would it have been... to establish that some asshole pretender to the throne was in power, and Yara was heading back to the Iron Islands to take the throne she deserves and have that be her final scene? Not one woman writer in the room to suggest sending her off in a way that befit the character? Not one?
• The Hound & The Mountain. They went out the only way they really could have, really. About the only deaths on the show that made total sense to me.
• Podrick. At least Ser Pod got to be a knight. A knight responsible for pushing King Bran the Broken’s wheelchair, but still a knight. I guess.
• Lord Varys. Let’s face it... his death was merely regret fodder for Tyrion and nothing more. And that’s okay. Some characters are there merely to serve as building blocks for other characters. And they gave him a pretty cool “death by dragonfire” exit, so I can’t complain too much.
• Bronn. Apparently got the lordship he was promised... but was also inexplicably made Master of Coin? WTF?!? Oh well. At least we know that the brothels of King’s Landing will be operational in record time.
• Royce and Edmure. Kind of a pointless characters to keep around until the end, but I guess it’s not entirely unexpected that some would make it just because they weren’t worth killing off. Seeing Edmure make a fool of himself at the end-council was kinda satisfying, I suppose.
• Robin Arryn. It took me a minute to figure out that the young guy at the council was, in fact, that creepy kid that was still breastfeeding at 13 years old (or whatever) ages ago. Apparently momma’s milk does a body good, because he actually looked quasi-normal here.
• Beric. I loved the character with his many lives and his flaming sword. And while I was sad to see him go, I thought his end was actually pretty great. Melisandre said he had served his purpose (to save Arya so she could save the world), and that’s as good as it gets.
And that, dear Game of Bullets readers, is the end of that.
UPDATE: This video does a great job of getting into why the ending for Game of Thrones is so unsatisfying. Worth a watch...
Posted on May 19th, 2019
Who cares who sits on The Iron Throne... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• No Spoilers! Seven years of complex characters and world-building tossed away for a rushed and unsatisfying conclusion. Game of Thrones was HBO's most popular show of all time. You just know that money was not an issue when it came to wrapping things up. But apparently David Benioff and D.B. Weiss were tired of their show and wanted to move on, so they just hacked together some of the most mundane and lazy storytelling they could muster, crammed it into six episodes, and called it good. You'd think if they were tired and wanted to move on they would hand the show off to somebody who gives a shit, but no. This is what we got. I'll wait a week before posting my thoughts so as not to spoil things for any latecomers, but dang. Lame.
• Keanu! I know more than a few people working in Hollywood. Not one of them has ever had anything but nice words to say about Keanu Reeves. He's a kind, generous soul and everybody loves working with him. On top of that he has a self-realized wisdom that makes me happy for his every success...
John Wick: Chapter 3 was pretty kick-ass. Can't wait for Chapter 4.
• Represent! When stars like Brie Larson say they are using their celebrity to insist on a more diverse, inclusive group of interviewers, they get attacked by people wanting to keep the status quo of the same voices. I find this absurd. Making room for more is not taking away from who's there now. It's making room for more. And here's the incomparable Halle Berry walking the walk and doing her part...
How can anybody watch this and think anybody is losing here? More people winning doesn't equate to more people are losing, and it's shitty that this attitude continues to be our default. Make room at the table... your dinner party will only get more interesting.
• Again. HEADLINE: Trump Tries to Win Over Midwest Farmers with Socialist Promises. Because socialism is bad when it comes to keeping people healthy or fed or housed... but good when it's used as pathetic compensation to keep your base happy due to your complete failure to understand how global trade works in the year 2019.
• Hypocrisy in Action! HEADLINE: Anti-abortion Rep. Tim Murphy resigns after report he asked lover to end pregnancy...
Make no mistake... NONE... that wealthy politicians will ALWAYS have access to safe abortions for their mistresses and family. For everybody else? Wire hangers and back alleys, baby. This hypocritical bullshit disgusts me to my core.
• Evolution! Ummm...
It's only a matter of time before they go all Plant of the Apes on our asses.
And, on that apocalyptic note, see you next Sunday!
Posted on May 5th, 2019
It's Cinco de Mayo! It's also great day to be alive... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Chewy! Peter Mayhew, most famous for playing Chewbacca in the Star Wars movies passed away this week. He sounded like a wonderful, generous man...
Rest in peace, sir. You crafted a character that captured my imagination and made me love a walking carpet.
• Mattress Wars! This is some shady shit right here...
I never trust online review sites. I rarely trust reviews on any site. Unless it's coming from somebody I know and/or trust, it's just bullshit noise. And yet... I still read them in an attempt to be informed as to my purchases. =shrugs=.
• Boca? Last year Kraft abandoned their Original Boca Burgers and Vegan Boca Burgers. They instead came out with a new "Boca Burger" which is nothing like the original despite still saying "original" on the box. It tastes like shit. The Vegan burger was discontinued entirely. Recently on their Facebook page, they unleashed this steaming pile of bullshit...
Our consumers told us that their experiences with our vegan burger were better represented by a turkey burger. With this new insight, we renovated our vegan burger to better deliver on taste, texture, and flavor under the new “Turk’y Burger” banner.
Vegans no longer want a vegan burger, they want a turkey-tasting burger? Yeah that sounds like it totally happened. Now that Kraft has completely abandoned all the things people loved about the Original and Vegan Boca Burgers, hopefully some other company will step in and make an ACTUAL Original Boca-inspired burger that people actually want to eat. Personally, I think Kraft is run by lying pieces of shit who just wanted to make a cheaper burger, didn't give a crap if it tasted nothing like a Boca Burger, then decided to sell it with outrageous levels of lying. Whatever. Not buying it. Go fuck yourself, Kraft. Why buy Boca Burger if you weren't interested in making Boca Burgers?
• Chalk! I ran across this video on chalk, of all things, and found it more interesting than I thought I could...
I haven't used a chalkboard for decades. But after watching this? I have an overwhelming desire to get me some Hagoromo Fulltouch chalk and write on one! Probably cost me $5 to buy a stick, but apparently it's an experience that needs to be had.
• Deep Sky! I've professed my love of all things GigaPan more than a couple times. But now they've got something really interesting going on. They've combined thousands of photos from a tiny area of sky about the size of the moon in the sky. The result? A Hubble Telescope GigaPan Image!
This is so cool...
Yeah, you'll want to head over to the GigaPan site to play with this yourself. It is positively astounding the number of galaxies that can be found in such a small section of our sky. Google says that the average number of stars in a galaxy is 250 billion ± 150 billion.
• Follow the Money! Veronica Mars is one of my favorite television shows of all time, which is why it's so great that it's getting revisited. First with a movie... now with a new series from Hulu...
Here's hoping that it's the first of many new seasons!
• Boo Pricing! Recently Hulu lowered their prices. Apparently they understand that with so much new streaming competition that they need to be competitive. Netflix, on the other hand, is taking the opposite tact. Recently when I visited their site I was forced to accept their new pricing before they would even let me access the content that I pay for...
Well... let's see... Netflix has canceled all the Marvel shows (the reason I signed up in the first place), so I suppose this is where I tell them to take their price increase and go fuck themselves with it. Except... they do add a comedy special I enjoy from time to time. So I guess my solution will be to drop the service, then pick it up for a month a couple times a year. Maybe if everybody does this, they'll get the fucking message. Because, sure, I love having original content (when it's good) but there's a limit as to how much I can afford to spend on it.
• Thrones! The first part of this episode was exactly what it needed to be... the calm before the storm. And then the storm began. And while the result of the initial encounter was tragic and earlier than expected, it WAS expected. There are a list of things that really must happen before the story ends. And we're almost there. So now it's all about the unknowns. There's things you'd like to happen. Things you'd hate to happen. Things that, hopefully, unexpectedly happen. And two episodes left for it all to happen in. Hopefully in way that makes sense, which the back-end of this episode really did not. Does nobody ride ahead and make sure that your way is safe any more? Insanity.
• It's Not Me It's You! Last Sunday HBO unleashed an episode of Game of Thrones that took 55 nights to film. It was a massive battle that had been building for years, and was an epic sight to behold. At least it would have been had they not filmed it so fucking dark that you couldn't see a damn thing. It was a horrific mess. Even when there was light enough to see something, they filmed it so close that you still couldn't tell what was going on. Needless to say, a lot of fans were extremely pissed off. Now the cinematographer for the episode said that It's not Me, It's Your TV Settings. Which is a load of shit, of course. I have a high-end 4K television and a fiber internet connection. I black out my entire living room when watching. This is NOT my fucking fault... or that of my internet... or that of my television... or that of my viewing environment.
The cinematographer's job was to create media which could be displayed and understood in the way that people would be consuming it. Namely, streaming over the internet with compression, limited gamut, and a normal television. Not in an idealized fantasy theater with Blu-Ray 4K Ultra HD signal and a $15,000 OLED TV. Which means he completely, utterly, and totally failed to do his job. And fuck him for saying otherwise. My hope is that HBO will listen to their customers and spend the money to re-key the lighting, then rebroadcast it so people can actually see the shit. If not? Fuck them too.
And that's all he wrote for bullets this week. Tune in next week when I'll try to find more to complain about!
Posted on April 1st, 2019
April is here at last.
This means I have to start traveling again. I get to start woodworking again. I need to start exercising again.
It also means that the final season of Game of Thrones is nigh...
The event I'm most looking forward to in April 2019 is Avengers: Endgame. A close second would be Game of Thrones Season 8. It could end any of a dozen different ways, and there's no telling who is going to end up sitting on The Iron Throne.
For the past three months I've been rewatching all the episodes so I'm ready to go come the 14th. Last night I finished the last one and found myself wishing I had timed it better. Now I've got two weeks to wait before I get more Thrones.
And then there's this...
I knew it had to be a prank... and yet... her reaction was so genuine!
The North Remembers. Or not.
Posted on August 6th, 2017
I've done absolutely nothing all weekend... but all that's about to change, because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Domino! I loved Ryan Reynold's Deadpool movie, finding it to be the most authentic and faithful adaptation to come out of FOX's Marvel mutants shit-hole ever. Naturally, this left me very excited over the sequel plans, which include Cable (Josh Brolin from Men In Black 3 who is also Thanos in the Marvel Studios Universe!) and Domino (Zazie Beatz from Atlanta). Both were flawless casting...
As somebody with ever-increasing amounts of vitiligo, I have to say that whomever came up with the idea of making the cinematic version of Domino be an inverse image of the comic book and use vitiligo to create her distinctive eye mark is a fucking genius!
How cool is that? Coming to a big screen near you sometime next year!
• GAME OF THRONES!!! Finally...
I've been waiting seven seasons for this moment!
If you've already seen Season Seven's fourth episode, here's a fascinating look at the thinking and special effects that went into the episode...
Amazing. Amazing. Amazing.
• Congressman Search and Rescue! It's funny because it is 100% dead-on balls accurate (click to enbiggen)...
Fucking politicians. But you can't really blame them. Our entire system is built to encourage corruption, so they're just playing the role we've created for them. And nothing is going to change until the system changes.
• It's a Poo! If I gave up being a vegetarian after 30 years... then ate half-dozen loose meat sandwiches... then took a massive shit... this is what I'm guessing I'd see when I looked in my toilet...
What a fucking pile of garbage. But is there anybody in the Trump Administration that isn't a fucking pile of garbage? Rather than me typing cuss-words for the next dozen paragraphs, here's John Oliver...
If you go on to watch the entire interaction between Steven Miller and Jim Acosta... go with God... because Miller's pathetic attempt at spin is so laughably idiotic as to raise genuine concern for his mental health. Apparently a requirement to govern now-a-days?
• Eagles! As a long-time fan of the American Bald Eagle, I am always touched when a new video surfaces of an eagle being rescued. Which got me to thinking about the number of times I've seen an eagle rescue video pop up, and I became curious... exactly how often does an eagle need to be rescued? A quick search on YouTube shows that it happens ALL the time! "About 608,000" hits? Insanity! It's so wonder these birds aren't extinct!
• Looking! A while back I blogged about Jake escaping from the catio the day before I was heading to Las Vegas. A surprising number of people have asked me what I would have done if I couldn't have found him before my flight. I'd think the answer would be obvious, but here it is... I'd have canceled my flight and stayed to look for him. There is no way... none whatsoever... I could have gotten on a plane knowing that Jake was outside alone. Work can be shifted. Flights can be rebooked. That's not even a blip on my radar compared to the thought of Jake getting lost forever.
Until next Sunday, then...
Posted on July 5th, 2017
I have a headache.
Which is actually a good thing, because it gives me an excuse to blow off work and re-watch Game of Thrones Season 6 in anticipation of Season 7 arriving in a couple weeks.
I love this show. Love it.
Daenerys Stormborn of the House Targaryen, First of Her Name, the Unburnt, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, and Mother of Dragons... after seriously fucking up somebody's day.
As I watch Season 6 and it just makes me want to start all over again from Season 1. Again. Because I've already done this at least twice. The show is that good. Some episodes... specifically Season 6, Episode 9, are better than most movies that get released.
And so... I'm going to spend the rest of the evening wishing I could go into a medically-induced coma until July 16th.
Posted on March 9th, 2014
Hope you're fully functional on one less hour of sleep today... because Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Persecution? My very first bullet of the day got a little out of control, so I'm saving it for an entry of its own tomorrow. Don't you love it when that happens? I'm a blog entry ahead for once!
• No Sale! Ke$ha has exited rehab... and celebrated the occasion by dropping the dollar-sign from her name! Say wha-?!? So now Ke$ha is Kesha and I'm not sure what that's going to mean for the future. Hopefully it still includes her working a metal plate on her crotch with a metal grinder, because isn't that what we all expect out of Ke$ha... errr... Kesha?
Whatever she calls herself, best of luck as she gets out of rehab and moves on with her life and her music.
• Enlisted! This show is so much better than it has a right to be...
Seriously. I had -zero- hope for this series. The ads all looked stupid-horrible. The concept of three brothers in the Army sounded lame. The only reason I bothered to tune in at all was because I liked Geoff Stults in The Finder. After the first episode, I was in shock that I liked it. The show was more smart than stupid... more funny than not. After the second episode, I was upset that I ended up liking it even more. Now I've just given up all pretenses of hating Enlisted and enjoy watching it. If you haven't given it a try, and you like comedy, it might be worth a look.
• Wenatchee! The valley in which I live is abuzz over this pretty new promo video that was released this week...
What's odd... or maybe it's not odd at all... is that the video barely touches on the City of Wenatchee itself. They fly above it. They explore around it. They look at it from afar. But I'm guessing only 5% of the footage actually takes place there. City streets, buildings, parks, public spaces, services, and all the other stuff that someone visiting Wenatchee proper would recognize and see... it's all condensed into a few seconds. Growing up in this area, I used to think that Wenatchee was a boring shithole in the middle of some nice scenery. And while the city has grown and changed since those days... along with my attitude towards it... it seems as though the filmmakers felt the best thing about Wenatchee was getting the hell out of it. So I guess I can relate. I've been there. And I've been to Wenatchee too.
• Quark! For a hefty amount of time in computing history, desktop publishing was owned by a single company, Quark, and their software solution, QuarkXpress. It was a majestic mess of a program that I always hated... so much so that I would often-times use Adobe Illustrator for page layout, even though it was ill-equipped to handle that task. I didn't care. I'd rather juggle 50 separate Adobe Illustrator files than a single 50-page document in Quark because it was ultimately far less hassle. Even their "competition," PageMaker, which was woefully underpowered for serious DTP was a better choice. Quark was a buggy, crash-prone mess that ate up so much time, money, and resources that anything was a better solution. Then Adobe came out with InDesign, which was sheer nirvana compared to shitty Quark, and I never looked back. Even when somebody sent me a Quark file to work with, I'd inevitably recreate the entire thing in InDesign from scratch because it would be less work than having to fire up Xpress to deal with it.
Whether that's your experience with Xpress mimics mine... or whether you loved it with a passion that InDesign could never match... anyone who has been touched by QuarkXpress should read this terrific article over at Ars about the rise and fall of a giant.
• HBO! And lastly? This fan-made mash-up trailer for Game of Thrones... as if it were airing in the 1990's... is pure genius, even if you know nothing about the show...
Seriously. This is a flawless victory so far as tributes go.
And now? Bullets be gone!
Posted on April 1st, 2012
Time to grab your bullet-proof vest, because Bullet Sunday starts now...
• Fool. I am not a fan of "April Fools' Day." Most of the pranks are pretty lame, stupid, and usually too obvious to "fool" anybody... especially the ones you find online. But Google has once again hit it out of the park with not one, but two amazingly well thought out and executed joke videos. Sure it's unlikely that anybody is going to be fooled, but they're still genius if you haven't seen them already...
• Leyner. I am not a fan of audio books. If I'm going to invest time in a book, I want to read it myself instead of having somebody read it to me. But I had a friend who was addicted to them, so every time we'd take a road-trip, he'd bring a bunch of them. I was never impressed enough to pay much attention. Except once. That would be the time that he popped in Et Tu, Babe by Mark Leyner into the cassette player and blew my mind. It was the single most awesome and bizarre thing I had ever heard...
After that, I was a diehard Mark Leyner fan, and kept up with all his genius that I could get my hands on... Tooth Imprints On a Corn Dog; I Smell Esther Williams; The Tetherballs of Bougainville; My Cousin, My Gastroenterologist; and now his latest... The Sugar Frosted Nutsack...
It's pretty insane... even for Leyner... but I still liked it. There's just nobody out there doing what he does the way he does it. But here's the thing... YOU HAVE TO GET THE AUDIO BOOK! Leyner reads all his books himself, and half of what makes his stuff so damn funny is his performance of the material. The shame is that Et Tu, Babe, which remains my favorite, is not available anymore. I keep hoping that Audible will add it since I only own it on cassette, but it's never shown up. Leyner is absolutely not for everyone... the guy is crazy-ass bizarre... but if you're looking for something different... really different... then the audio book might be worth a listen at your local library.
• Amazement. The season two debut was everything I was hoping for and more...
And if you're a fan of Tyrion Lannister on the show, you need to read an interview with the actor who portrays him, the amazing Peter Dinklage, in the New York Times.
• Eggo2. For the person who said Eggo Waffles were "gross" after I mentioned them yesterday, I would have to agree. Usually. Except... the NEW "Thick & Fluffy" Eggos that just came out are an entirely different animal. The honest truth? I prefer them to a lot of waffles I've had in restaurants...
So delicious. So not kidding. If you like waffles, give 'em a try.
Annnnnd... SCENE. No more bullets for you!
Posted on December 2nd, 2011
I seem to be running out of time for so many things lately. But, with luck, I'll manage to get caught up with all kinds of stuff this weekend... including doing the drawing for Avitable and my Movember prize package. Can't wait for that!
Today was a day of trying to do too much. This left me completely exhausted by the time I made it home. But do I ever learn? I thought I could manage a couple episodes of Game of Thrones while getting some work done after dinner, but the show is so amazing that you really have to give it your full attention. So now I'll have to re-watch the episodes again. Hopefully soon, because holy crap do I love that show.
The show I am definitely not enjoying is the three-ring circus that has become the Republican presidential arena. I am approaching near-desperation waiting for a candidate to emerge who can seriously challenge President Obama and give the American people the debate on issues and ideals that we deserve. An Obama landslide victory benefits none of us... even his more staunch supporters.
Herman Cain is almost certain to bow out of the race tomorrow. He simply cannot escape the massive level of scandal that's been escalating around him for months. But, then again, this is Herman Cain we're taking about.
Rick Perry seems perfectly content to keep reminding people how stupid he is by ridiculing himself at every given opportunity. Yes, you have to laugh at your mistakes, BUT THEN YOU MOVE ON. Who in the hell is advising him? IS ANYBODY?
Mitt Romney, who at one time "felt" the most presidential of the bunch, is now whining like a little bitch because the press is asking him the hard questions about his historical legacy of flip-flopping on every talking point in the history of politics. And we're not talking the tired old Republican go-to whining about the mythical "Liberal mainstream media" they've fabricated so they have somebody to blame whenever they say or do stupid crap... he's whining about the Conservative agenda mouthpieces at FOX "News"! There's little doubt that the candidacy is his to lose... AND HE'S LOSING IT.
Rick "Piece of Shit" Santorum has now reached a level of insignificance that approaches navel lint. His never-ending attacks on the gays leaves little doubt that he is overcompensating for his massive craving for a big ol' cock sandwich. I wish he's just take a bite and shut the fuck up already.
Michele "Bat-Shit Crazy" Bachmann recently said she thinks that Rick "Piece of Shit" Santorum would be the ideal vice-presidential running mate on her 2012 all-homophobe-all-the-time fantasy presidential ticket. As if that's not enough, she continues to dazzle us with misrepresentation and lies so bold that it's hard to figure out if she even knows that most everything she says is bullshit. This has gone from amusing to hysterical to sad to pathetic. At some point the Republican leadership is going to realize that her non-stop parade of idiocy is no longer a handy tool for making the rest of the candidates look good... but instead a raging embarrassment that makes them all look bad. Anybody who's seen Old Yeller knows how this one ends... it's just a matter of time.
Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman have virtually no support within the Republican party. At least not enough to matter. And that's a shame, because Huntsman in particular seems like he could pose the biggest threat to President Obama in an election. If only he could somehow convince The Right that a "Conservative Light" candidate is far more appealing to undecided voters than the radical Conservative hard-asses they seem to rally behind.
Newt Gingrich gave me hope for the longest time. Sure I disagree with the bulk of his politics but, despite his many scandals, he seemed the most capable of making a serious argument for change and taking it to President Obama's front yard. He's got the vision and drive to make a serious impact, even though I don't think he has a chance of winning the election. But all of that is for naught if he can't reign in his rich bitch arrogant asshole mouth. Newt is almost joyous in his enthusiasm to kick the poor and unemployed when they're down, not seeming to realize that there are plenty of Republicans in that very situation. Who is going to listen to your ideas when you're shitting all over them? You can lighten up your demeanor without compromising your ideals... LOOK INTO IT! Because at some point you have to convince more than just your fan base that you're worthy of being their president.
And that's it! That's all she wrote! Unless somebody crawls out of the GOP woodwork to revive the run for the nomination, it's looking like Gingrich or (perhaps more likely) Romney is what we're going to get. This has me almost hoping that Sarah Palin swoops in and grabs the nomination, because at least that would be an entertaining disaster.
But oh no. If things keep going this route, President Obama is going to win in a cake-walk without having to answer for much of anything. It doesn't get much sadder than that.
Unless you're President Obama's campaign manager.
If you're President Obama's campaign manager, you absolutely live for this shit.
Posted on November 30th, 2011
So there I am driving home from work when all of a sudden a pickup truck down the street ahead of me screeches to a halt and starts backing up!
My first instinct was to do nothing. This would be the THIRD time in FOUR months that somebody has backed into my invisible piece-of-shit car. I might as well pick up another insurance check out of the deal.
But then two thoughts hit me at once...
So I honked my horn. They screeched to a halt again (one car-length from my bumper) then pulled forward into a parking spot so I could pass.
And I bet you a million dollars they were cussing me out for daring to honk at them, even though I saved THEM from hitting ME.
I tell you, the only thing keeping me from wanting to be abducted by aliens right now so I can leave this shithole planet behind is this...
I read the first book of George R. R. Martin's epic "Song of Ice and Fire" series, A Game of Thrones, because of a glowing employee recommendation at Powell's City of Books. I liked it well enough that I bought the follow-up, A Clash of Kings when it came out a few months later. A couple years after that, A Storm of Swords came out. It was supposed to be the last book of a trilogy, but Martin decided he wanted to keep going. I then gave up because it took FIVE years for the fourth book, A Feast for Crows to come out... and frickin' SIX years after that for the fifth book, A Dance with Dragons, to come out (this past July).
The reason I gave up was because the last thing I want is to get all invested in the series only to have George R. R. Martin up and die before he finally finishes the story (presumably with book seven)...
Game of Thrones creator George R.R. Martin — ©2011 HBO/Helen Sloan
But thennnnnnn... HBO unleashed an Original Series based upon the books that has been getting rave reviews and awards. Whenever I travel, I always try to catch it when my hotel has HBO. I've seen roughly half of the ten episodes...
I was thinking I'd watch the rest of the episodes when the DVD set was released, but HBO isn't releasing it until frickin' MARCH (and it's priced like EIGHTY DOLLARS or something) so I went ahead and ordered HBO. Now I've been watching it via On Demand, and am pretty amazed at how faithful they are to the book (or what I remember of it).
But now I am back to worrying over whether George R. R. Martin will die before the HBO series can be concluded. Even worse is the thought that Martin will complete the books in a timely manner, but HBO will cancel the series before they've adapted all of them.