Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Shallow Thoughts - 3/10/10


• At the end of “Lost” last night when they said, “Only nine more episodes left until the finale,” Brooke said, “Only?” sarcastically, and I said, “Only?” earnestly. It seems like there’s still a lot of ground to cover in 11 hours if they want to wrap everything up in a satisfying manner. By which I mean not telling us every little bit of minutiae regarding what happened, but to answer the questions that they at least made us think were important, like why the island can time travel, what the Dharma Initiative were doing there, etc. It seems like they’re moving toward a grand unification theory involving (SPOILER) the Oceanic castaways (and most everyone else on the island) as “Candidates” for taking over Jascob’s job of protecting the island, which doesn’t necessarily address all these other issues…yet. At least last night we got a subtle answer to a riddle from last season – why did Ben stop Locke from killing himself, then kill him? Turns out candidates can’t bring about their own demise…but they can be murdered. The larger issue this season, though, is that they have yet to explain the relation the flash-sideways have to the main plot (or if, indeed, they are now the main plot). Everyone certainly has their theories as to how they relate, and as we see two episodes in a row now where Sayid and Ben live an existence where they get to be close to dead people they love without actually getting to be with them, it’s certainly becoming clearer. But until the show explicitly says “These are real, the stakes in them are as high or higher than the stakes on the island,” they’re inevitably going to feel like extended fantasy sequences, and they’re not going to carry the weight that the action on the island carries. For more spirited discussion of Lost, be sure to check out Sean T. Collins’ weekly wrap-up session, and the comments thread there.

  • New Futurama episodes return in June! It’s almost hard to feel excited because it seems so abstract. The feature-length episodes they did were good, by and large, but not nearly as good as the show at its best, and the protracted battle between Fox and the voice cast last summer (that resulted in a very low-key Comic-Con panel) have made it difficult to get quite as jazzed as I would have been at the news several years ago. But, again, I can count on my apprehension melting away when the episodes actually air – Futurama is a show that rarely disappoints. It’s just part of what I’m hoping will be a very exciting June…

  • Speaking of San Diego, I’m registering as a Professional this year for the first time ever (provided they accept my registration, which they should because it’s legit). This, coupled with the fact that I’ve recently received my first check for writing a comic book (which, by definition, makes me a professional comic book writer) makes me feel a lot less guilty about listing myself as a comic book writer in my Twitter bio. It’s true!

  • So the Oscars happened. Brooke and I had the pleasure of viewing them with Zach Oat, who was live-blogging them for televisionwithoutpity.com and had to leave his home due to Cablevision and/or ABC being jerkfaces (and then changing their mind about being jerkfaces 40 minutes into the show). I haven’t seen Hurt Locker, partially due to my prohibition on things that I think will be really upsetting. We watched District 9 a few days before the ceremony to at least up the number of nominated films we’d seen, and I was initially a little meh on it, but I’m liking it better the further away I get from watching it. It was bogged down in my head too much at first by being Oscar-nominated, but as I get some distance from that I’m just enjoying it on its own terms. Brooke suggested that they license the characters out for cat food commercials, and I think that’s an excellent suggestion. If they use it, I hope they pay her. At any rate, I think Avatar got the Oscars it deserved, but I wish Inglorious Basterds had won a couple more awards. Granted, I didn’t see a lot of the films that won over it, but hot damn that movie’s a hoot. I enjoyed Avatar, but it’s hard to judge it on its merits, partially because of the spectacle and partially because it was the first film I ever ended up seeing in a theater by myself. I had to see it for work (look for an Avatar parody in an upcoming Twisted ToyFare Theatre!) and there was just no time we could get someone to watch the kids so Brooke could see it with me. It’s not an experience I’m keen to reproduce—I find doing things I normally do with Brooke by myself depressing.
  • Final Fantasy XIII is on its way to me, and I'm not sure if I should spend my evenings playing it or getting work done and spending time with my family. The two seem kind of mutually exclusive. I’ve got a long history with the franchise—I played every U.S.-released game up until XI (I’m not a big MMO guy), and the release of a new Final Fantasy game is usually a big deal in my family. To this day, my brother can only remember my birthday because Final Fantasy VII (possibly the masterpiece of the video game medium) released on September 9th, and he remembers that it was the day before my birthday.
  • The ToyFare blog FarePlay should be up and running again, either today or within the next couple of days. Definitely keep an eye on it—I’m going to be adding some entries soon that should prove pretty entertaining.
  • Speaking of blogs to follow, keep checking out We Are the LAW. After moving on from Poltergeist, the guys tackled Sean’s Destructor, then Orko, and the next round of drawings should prove pretty fantastic, indeed.

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