February: i hope this search ends up on the nerd hurdles blog

March 2, 2011


February might be the shortest month, but there was no shortage of WTF in our search term stats.

i hope this search ends up on the nerd hurdles blog: Congratulations. You just Post’d our blog. What’s that mean? It’s when a crowd-sourced blog jumps-the-shark. Remember how awesome Post Secret (the blog where people would mail in anonymous confessions on postcards) was when it first started? It was a glorious. But then people started sending in obviously fake, exponentially ridiculous, secrets and confessions and it got wrecked. It happened to This Is Why You’re Fat too. The phenomenon has most recently cropped up on the previously awesome Not Always Right.

weird asian: I always thought Dr. Ho was a little odd.

twilight vampire (definition): n. Crap covered in glitter.

mandi tattoos: Good lord. Enough people have gotten Mandi’s face tattooed on their butts it’s become a search term?

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Episode 83 – Battlestar GalacTALKa Series Finale / True Blood

October 5, 2010


Those who’ve listened to the episode already know that we didn’t GalacTALKa about the finale very much. Perhaps not as promised, but pretty much as expected. It wasn’t our fault though. For one thing True Blood is a lot more interesting to talk about. Those are some characters you can sink your teeth into.

Fear not, further talk on the BSG finale, Daybreak, will probably jump its way into future episodes. Perhaps if we ever do a Diana Gabaldon special. Because I will have even less to say about Outlander than Mandi did about the BSG finale. Or exactly the same amount: “It’s fine.” Except that would be a complete lie. I had to put it down at page 76 feeling that it is the antithesis of “fine.”

But in case we never get around to a real breakdown of Daybreak on the podcast, here’s a few thoughts we had.

1) Question: Why didn’t the fans like the finale? I’m not exactly sure I understand what upset people so much. It was, as Mandi said with a slight sigh of resignation, “Fine.”  I didn’t pay a lot of attention to their comments at the time it aired, trying to stay spoiler-free, but now I’m wishing I did.

Because for anyone who actually enjoyed the series for what it was, Daybreak had to be pretty much the perfect finale. Which means it was only “just fine” but still, what did people expect? Did anyone really think the show would suddenly stop being an overly melodramatic soap opera with massive continuity flaws and hackneyed, plot-driven writing?

Perhaps they objected to the completely pointless flashbacks to before the war that slowed the pace down to a near standstill. Those scenes could all have been removed to the betterment of the episode(s). They only served to be pretentious wankery and did little to shed any new light on the characters.

So Apollo and Starbuck almost made-out when Zack was still alive? Is that supposed to be a character revelation that suddenly puts their relationship in perspective? If so, it fails miserably. It doesn’t tell us anything we don’t already know about them.

Nor do Roslin’s ill-fated cougar episodes tell us anything more about her lonely, isolated personal life on Caprica. We got all that in the series, the way we should have—from her character development and in the subtext within Mary McDonnell’s portrayal.

Like any prequel, the flashbacks only served to weaken what was already there, not add a new layer of depth. Which is why they were probably so boring to watch. Perhaps, if you’d never experienced a single minute of BSG, they’d have been interesting interludes introducing you to those characters that added context for what was going on in the present. But if so, why the hell were you watching the series finale and not the debut miniseries?

2) It wasn’t nearly as religious as we’d been lead to believe. In fact, I’d go as far as to say it wasn’t religious at all. Instead it was purely mythological, a rehash of a thousand creation myths rolled into one. Based, again, on the outrage of fans at the time, I was expecting a heavy-handed Christian message tacked-on at the end or something.

But no, it was about as sci-fi as anything I’ve read or seen but with a lot less heavy-handed Christ imagery than something like Narnia, The Matrix or even Fifth Element.

Yes, religious beliefs do play a large role in the story for the characters. But religious beliefs play a major role for Bajorans, Vulcans, Klingons, Jedis, and Elves. There is clearly a “God” and “Angels” in BSG, but I expect it’s just some alien race like The Q.

But then, I’m an athiest and if I were confronted with a real life miracle, I’d probably think the same thing.

3) The opera house dream arc makes no sense at all. Well, it makes sense, but it doesn’t come anywhere close to working.

The strength of BSG is supposed to be the plot arc that sweeps over all four seasons. Which would be a great thing if it wasn’t painfully clear that they had no idea where they were headed from the start. The opera house/dream storyline highlights this best.

There is absolutely no point to Roslin’s or Gaius and Caprica Six’s connection to Hera. They don’t really save her. They don’t end up raising her, Athena and Helo are still alive. And beyond that, there ultimately isn’t even any point to Hera’s existence at all. She isn’t the one to point them to Earth, Kara does. Hera doesn’t convince Cavil and Adama to end the war, they more or less work that out on their own. If she doesn’t get eaten by a lion, Hera will probably just grow up to mate with a Neanderthal. Okay, great… So what? So is everyone else. After all the drama surrounding Hera, she ends up having no real significance? If there’s one thing the fans should have been upset about it’s that.

Of course, the writers and producers set themselves up to fail by, at one point or another,  alluding to almost every single character as being a possible Saviour figure. From Kara to Sam to Roslin to Gaius to Hera to Leoben to [insert character name here], they couldn’t all be the one who saves Humanity and Cylonity(?) from extinction.

Unfortunately, the writers didn’t tie the story up well enough so that they all played an equal part. Most of them were dead weight, dragging the plot down, by the time they finally reach Earth.

There’s no small amount of minutiae I could get into, but picking apart BSG’s minutiae is like shooting ducks in a barrel with Galactica’s cannons (which never really seemed to hit much, considering the continuous barrage of death they spewed). The above were the main points I noticed while watching the finale and, really, about all the consideration I wish to ever give the show again.

Perhaps in the future some nit-picking will emerge as we tangent off topic on another show, but for now we’re watching True Blood (which is like a really good Twilight fanfic).


Episode 024: Sculder and Mully (Special Edition)

July 11, 2009

They say the truth is out there. I want to believe that. But I trust no one. The truth is the catch-phrase laden X Files doesn’t weather so well. I watched the shit out of that show when it was on TV in the 90s. Everyone I knew did.

Yeah, he really was that sordid.

We wanted to believe the government was evil and something to rebel against like the hippies did the 60s. But we didn’t really have anything. Life was pretty good in the 90s and pretty bad for artists and anarchists. Even though the Bush cronies actually were beginning to work their Voldemort-like machinations back then, they were frankly it was too subtle for us kids to see. Hippies had Nixon and the punks in the 80s had Thatcher/Reagan’smore obvious douchieness to take on. Us grunge kids had… Friends and New Kids on the Block to combat? The first Gulf War was over before we could rally against it and, well, life was pretty comfortable otherwise. But Roswell cover-ups! We knew the bastards were hiding something.

And I think the popularity of  The X Filestied-in to another social need of the 90s. New Age hullabaloo was huge in the 90s. Supposed athiests were realizing at this late stage in the liberal dream that humans need to believe in something. At least a large percentage of the population does to be happy. For some people it’s Jesus and Yahweh giving meaning and order to complicated lives, for others it’s a vague interconnected “spiritualism” half-based on Eastern philosphy, half-based on soap scents and ecological imagery that controls our destinies. Still others who want to believe in something over-seeing their lives, controling it for better or worse, turn to the secular version of an all-powerful, wrathful diety: a conspiratorial government.

I think for a lot of conspiracy theorists and conspiracy fans the idea that no one is in control is unacceptable. Better an evil, Machiavellian government deviously controlling our lives than nothing or no one at all.

Personally, conspiracy theories are too nerdy for me.


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