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“Wolverine: Origins” Review

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Many writers of superhero comics commonly write themselves into corners, and have no idea how to get out. They have their heroes defeated, the villains winning and everything looking hopeless. However, the good guys need to win so there can be an issue next month, so some superheroes are incredibly overpowered just so they can be thrown at problems to fix them.

For DC, it is Superman who is impervious to all types of damage and can punch through planets. Marvel has Wolverine. Wolverine is not as strong as Superman, but he can’t die either, and has a personality that is driven by more than a simple need to do the right thing. The main problem with this type of character is that someone who can’t die lacks a lot basic conflict and has problems carrying on a story of their own. This does not stop Wolverine from being popular, so to cash in on this Marvel has just released a movie about him. Continue reading

Fool by Christopher Moore: A Different Take on King Lear

foolChristopher Moore’s latest book, Fool, is a retelling of Shakespeare’s play King Lear through the eyes of Pocket, the court jester. Being one of Shakespeare’s tragedies, going in I imagined it was going to be hard to find humor in the plot. However, Moore uses the plot, the language, and every situation in the book to fit a joke onto almost every page.

This is Moore’s second re-telling of an old story, his first being Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal, which I greatly enjoyed. In this book however, he decided to use an already existing minor character, and develop him greater, instead of making an entirely new character and inserting him into the story. The way Pocket is developed and inserted into the events happening in the narrative, it’s hard at times to imagine him as a minor character in the play.

Going in, I was a little worried that I would have a hard time following the plot since I wasn’t too familiar with the original work, despite being assigned to read it in multiple classes in college (I was never really a motivated student). This was not the case though, as Moore keeps things simple, clearly keeping all characters and titles in order and avoiding traditional Shakespearean dialogue, making it a very approachable book to those not familiar with the bard. Continue reading

FFX-2: Girly Propaganda from lazy programmers

A few years back, Square came out with its tenth game in the Final Fantasy series, cleverly titled “Final Fantasy X.” I picked it up, because, like I’ve mentioned before, I enjoy the series, and the Playstation installments 7 and 9 were good. I also thought that there was no fucking way they could make a game as bad as 8 ever again. Overall, it was a mediocre game with a confusing ending. Something about the main guy being the lost dream of a dead city, or something. I don’t know, I didn’t really get it then and I still don’t particularly care.

I can’t wait for the e-mails I get about that. God you people love to bitch about spoilers. Well, here’s a hint: if you haven’t played a game, don’t read articles about its sequel.

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Speaking of spoilers, this guy framed Roger Rabbit.

Anyway, I’m not here to talk about the mediocre game, I’m here to talk about its very crappy sequel. Square realized the money-making opportunities it had, as can be seen in the recent sales of final fantasy sex toys (ok, no, but they could have! and they still might), so they decided to start cashing in and making sequels where they aren’t needed. One could argue there is a need due to the confusing ending, and the fact that it wasn’t exactly a happy one, but I still think it could have been left alone. Continue reading

Choke: A Movie Review

As I have stated before, I am a huge fan of Chuck Palahniuk’s earlier books. Like most people, I found out about his work from the movie “Fight Club,” which I loved, and still do to this day. Fans have been waiting nine years for another adaptation, getting their dreams crushed along the way with cancellations for various reasons, such as Survivor not being adapted after September 11th due to the fact the plot involves a plane hijacking. After a long wait, they finally got their wish, with the newly released movie “Choke.”

The plot follows Victor Mancini, a young sex addict who makes himself choke in restaurants in order to get saved by people so he can use the sympathy of a near death experience to get money from them in order to keep his senile mother in a nursing home. His mother never remembers who he is, and Victor is trying to find out about his past before she loses her mind completely. The story only gets stranger from there. Continue reading

Snuff: The Story of the Most Boring Gang Bang Ever

Chuck Palahniuk has been one of my favorite authors for a few years now. His stories about the darker side of life have often left me unable to put the book down.  The plot often equates to things getting worse for the main character in often entertainingly macabre ways.

When I heard he had a new book out, Snuff, I immediately got my hands on it, filled with vague hopes that this would be better than his last book, Rant, which had left me disappointed and confused. Unfortunately, I found this to be his worst work yet.

The plot revolves around Cassie Wright, an aging porn star trying to end her career by breaking the world record for the largest gangbang by having sex with six hundred men in one day. Most of the story takes place backstage, as seen through the eyes of three men; Mr. 72, a young kid who claims to be Cassie’s long lost son, Mr. 137, a failing television actor, and Mr. 600, a co-star in many of Cassie’s films.

The narrative style is typical Palahniuk. As the action moves forward he throws in more info, fleshing out the story or the main character. Survivor, had tips about cleaning as the main character was a maid; Fight Club, told the reader how to make explosives, since the main character was a psychopath. These fit to their stories well, and added to the narrative. Snuff is filled with odd facts about celebrities and sex. While these facts are amusing in themselves, it feels like Palahniuk spent a few nights on Snopes.com, wrote down every odd thing he came across, and tried to work it into his story. Often, the facts come up as small talk between the characters and added nothing to the story itself, seemingly inserted to artificially lengthen an already short novel. Continue reading

Previously on LOST: The Live Experience

Show date: June 1st
Venue: The Knitting Factory
Band: Previously on LOST

Many different forms of entertainment have inspired songs, or even entire bands about them. The Harry Potter books started the band Harry and the Potters, The Gothic Archies have lyrics inspired by Lemony Snicket series, “A Series of Unfortunate Events” (although that one may not count as much, as the author is in the band), and there are multiple bands who sing entirely in Klingon. Now there is Previously on Lost, a band that writes songs about the show LOST.

Each song they have written summarizes an episode from season four of the show, giving birth to a genre that has been coined as “Recap Rock.” Their songs have an upbeat tempo to them, which makes for catchy tunes that you may hear yourself humming after you listen to them. When I heard they were playing on at The Knitting Factory in the city, I figured there were worse ways to spend ten dollars (as I usually learn whenever I eat at White Castle).

Atmosphere was a big part of the night. Upon entering the main bar, everyone was given a leigh. The stage was decorated with inflatable palm trees and a cardboard cutout of a hula girl. The only way things could have been more island-themed is if there was sand on the floor. The show began with a cardboard plane being carried from the back of the room and crashing into the stage. The two singers of the band then came out and mercilessly pummeled aforementioned plane, and went right into the first song. It was small touches like that, and the songs themselves that made the show memorable.

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Final Fantasy 8 Sucks: A Review That’s Too Damn Late

I’m going to break my usual tradition and write about something mainstream today. It’ll come as a shock to most of you, not reading about some obscure ROM about gay sex. We’ll be back to that soon, don’t worry.

Like most of you nerds out there, I play video games in my spare time. I read the reviews and see what’s good and what sucks, and throw away all reviews that say “OMG THE GRAPHICS SUCKZ.” I grew up with Atari. I can deal with bad graphics; I could really care less if the main character is a blue dot or a fully rendered 3-D model of Estelle Getty in the nude (which would of course be the hottest thing ever). Sometimes though, reviews are just so wrong that it makes you want to hunt down the person who wrote it and burn crosses on their front lawn. This has happened to me a few times, but there is one game I loathe so much that to this day I still hate those bastards the gave it a positive review.

But when Atari tries to render Estelle Getty, it just isn’t the same.

It’s a well-known fact that a lot of fanboys have hard-ons for the Final Fantasy series. They’ll buy anything closely associated with it, from T-shirts to sex toys. So whenever a new one comes out, magazines and on-line sites hail this as the second coming of zombie Jesus. Everyone eats it up and Square laughs, counting their money. As for myself, I’ve been playing Final Fantasy since back in the days of the NES, before there was even a plot. So I know the games can be good, even with the weaknesses they all share, so there’s no need to e-mail me talking about how the game consists of pressing one button until you win. I know. I hate it myself, but for some reason I can’t stop. Continue reading