It’s about one year ago, I’m in a cabin in the woods, invited by my friend Patrick to spend the weekend there. This is the third time he’s invited me to stay there, and he’s been insistent about it for years. With each request, my mind imagines a new sinister twist to my arrival, a new dark purpose to the invitation. Patrick wants me there because he wants to kill me in my sleep and feed me to his guests, or Patrick is a master criminal and me going to the cabin is part of his plan to make me the fall guy for one of his schemes. I don’t know what it is about me, but when someone asks something from me I immediately get suspicious, even if they’re just requesting my company. There’s also something about Patrick’s smile, and the way his eyes squint when he grins at you, it’s almost like he’s hiding a crucial piece of information and finds it amusing. Like he just watched you drink someone’s pee without you realizing it. Anyways, I finally arrive, and the events of the trip were transformative in many ways.Continue reading “A Cabin In the Woods”
Tony Soprano is sitting alone in a booth as Journey’s Don’t Stop Believing is playing on a jukebox, and in walks Tony’s wife Carmela. They’re meeting at a diner tonight to eat, and Tony has some bad news to discuss, but before things can go further, their son AJ arrives and starts complaining about the tedium of his job. Tony assures him that he’s building contacts, that even the pointless stuff is all part of something larger for his career. Their daughter Meadow is late because she had to go to the doctor to switch birth control. AJ reminds Tony of something he was told years ago, Tony doesn’t remember it, but he thinks it sounds right. Meadow is having trouble parking her car, but she finally manages it and arrives. Tony looks up as the diner door opens – CUT TO BLACK. Thus ends The Sopranos. On its face, it’s a mundane evening with an American family, so how did it become such an iconic ending that it helped elevate this already lauded show into something of a legend?Continue reading “How The Sopranos Finale Made it a Masterpiece – And What People Miss When They Don’t Really Pay Attention”
Over the course of 2021, I played and beat Persona 5‘s gargantuan storymode. It took me over 110 hours, and that was without grinding for level ups to get through a challenge, as the fights for the most part were fairly easy, even on hard mode. No, a lot of that time spent playing the game was actually just watching cutscenes for said story mode. There was so much ground to cover because the game possessed soaring ambitions atypical of JRPGs. A lot of the time the story fell short on those ambitions, but in some of key ways, Persona 5 is a game with the most trenchant political critique on society since Metal Gear Solid 2. This really comes down to the story’s villains, which consist of specific corrupt individuals with institutional power, rotted institutions themselves, and ultimately, your everyday person. It’s that last step that really takes really takes Persona 5‘s critique to the next level, but we should start from the beginning.Continue reading “How Persona 5 Diagnoses our Deeply Sick Society Within its Story”
Sex and the City probably qualifies as “underrated” these days. That’s a description that is probably too often applied to genuinely mediocre properties, but Sex and the City today is commonly used as a punchline. A show about women who talk like the middle aged gay men who wrote for them that’s frequently taken to task for “not aging well” by media illeterate Op-Ed writers. I could write a whole separate blog post about this that boils down to “having characters with wrongheaded beliefs isn’t the same as advocating for them”, but today I want to talk about Steve’s dark streak.Continue reading “Sex and the City and Steve’s Dark Streak”
Probably weird that I’m coming back after almost 2 years of not posting to talk about a controversal adaption of the polarizing musical starring Ben Platt, Dear Evan Hansen. I’m gonna get real specific with this post though. I’m not going to talk about how Ben Platt looks too much like the Cryptkeeper to play a highschooler, I’m not going to talk about how weirdly bleak and sterile the whole vibe of the movie is, I’m not going to talk about how weirdly bad Amy Adam’s performance in this is, and I’m definitely not going to say a word about how goddamn creepy it is that Evan actually dates the sister of the suicide victim he’s basing his long term deception on. No, I’m going to talk about one song, and how everything wrong with the movie (and the broadway musical to a lesser extent) can be traced back to it.Continue reading “Insincerely Me”
With a show with as many characters as Game of Thrones, it’s inevitable that a herd of stinkers would work their way into the fold. Although, it’s a bit misleading to outright say the show has a lot of outright bad characters, and that’s not exactly what this list is about. There are some interesting, well-acted characters on this list, but my criteria for what makes them the worst is how much they actively hurt the watching experience. It’s not just about sucking, it’s a combination of how much damage they do to the show, how much wasted potential they represent, and how outright annoying they are. It’ll make more sense as you read through, so here are Game of Thrones’ 10 worst characters.
Note: “Laptopstein” is the name of the engineer that created my laptop, my laptop should be referred to as Dr. Laptopstein’s Laptop.
The last update on my laptop was a joyous post of celebration. The one before, was a tragedy on the levels of King Lear and Oedipus Rex. Today, I give you an update that brings the status of my laptop in flux, that places its well being between my previous two updates. Between life and death, in the twilight of my triumph and ultimate despair. My laptop has died, but it continues to live. It is currently being torn apart at the seams, but I have found a way to suspend it in something of a stasis. By not closing it anymore, my laptop is no longer in a state of constant structural deterioration. But new problems arose before and after I finally made that decision.
I recently got a chance to see The Lego Batman Movie, and it was amazing. Funny, heartfelt, and the perfect treat for a fan of Batman like myself. It functioned as both the ultimate fan film, and also the best cinematic Batman story since The Dark Knight. I also happened to enjoy it more than the original Lego Movie, which I thought was terrific, but was something I only liked rather than loved. What happened here? How could I prefer a spin-off that was admittedly less ambitious than the film that precipitated it? Well, the answer to that question lies in that ambition itself, and to explore it, I’m going to have to get into some spoilers.
If it wasn’t clear just based off the title, this article will contain spoilers!