Meanwhile, in the Grammar Crisis room....

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Rock and Monkey

It's only a matter of time before the Rock wins an Oscar.
He's slated next to assume the Clint Eastwood role in Every Which Way but Loose. (
For those of you who don't know, the movie featured Clint teaming up with a monkey. Obviously, it was a serious drama, investigating the complexities of humanity and... monkeyness.
Frankly, I've been following the Rock's movie career, and this really is the next logical step.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

WB and UPN merge, Now Only One Network to Ignore

According to this Aintitcool news post, the WB network will be merging with UPN into one channel, CW, because, apparently, the fight for last place got too competitive.
Now, life gets exciting, as we will see bad TV fight against bad TV for the right to be broadcast. Natural selection - horrible programming style. Will teen-angst beat, well, whatever the hell UPN broadcasts? Tune in to find out.
Meanwhile, I'll be watching cable, Fox, and the occasional NBC.
(Give me Nip/Tuck, South Park, 24, My Name is Earl and House any day.)

Monday, January 23, 2006

Vive la Revolution!

An article I read recently made the case that the Nintendo Revolution would be the eventual winner in the upcoming generation of videogames (via a Kotaku post). It makes a compelling argument, so good that it almost convinced me.
To summarize, the article postulates that:
  • Videogames have become rather stale recently, and malaise is beginning to show itself in the gaming community.
  • The Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 merely continue along the same track as their predecessors, and cost more (article cites rumor that Playstation 3 may cost $500, a sizable chunk of change).
  • The Nintendo Revolution is likely to cost less, and deliver a different gaming experience, due to its unique controller (pictured, with system, at right).
  • Therefore, the Revolution will win out.
This is a good argument, and I admit that, despite being leery of the controller at first, I'm intrigued by the possibilities of the system. However, the article does leave out several key points:
  • Sony and Microsoft are financial powerhouses, and can afford to support a system for the long haul. They will not back out should the fight prove to be a tough one.
  • Nintendo has alienated a good deal of the gaming population with 2 less-than-successful (at least, imagewise) systems. The dearth of software for the Nintendo 64 was painful, and the Gamecube has also lacked the spectacular 3rd-party support that the Playstation 2 and Xbox systems enjoy.
  • Power. The Revolution will apparently be less powerful than its competition. Never discount the power of, well, power.
This puts the gamers in a tight spot; should we buy Nintendo, Sony or Microsoft?
I asked the future-predicting monkey Bonzo, and he announced, without hesitation, that the winner of the console war will be...Intellivision.
(stupid monkey!)
(pic from wikipedia)

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Pantsless on the Subway

The recent AP News Story "8 Nabbed for No Pants Subway Ride in N.Y." raises a very important question: are there people who actually wear pants on the subway? Sickos!
The story, though, claims that "160 people participated in the fifth annual No Pants Subway Ride...". Now, I would think the people who organized this event have never seen the average New York subway rider....but there have been 4 previous "no pants" rides! I mean, how is the No Pants Subway Ride a success to the point where it warrants 4 sequels?
These are the questions that keep me up at night.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Gwen Stacy? Spiderman 3?

According to Ain't It Cool News, which, as we know, is never wrong (except for, well, yesterday...and all those other days), Gwen Stacy will appear in Spiderman 3. What's more, she'll be played by Ron Howard's daughter!
Is it me, or does it seem that the whole Howard family has some supernatural contract with the devil for fame? I mean, Clint Howard. Enough said.
More than one poster about the article noted how odd it was that they cast a blonde for Mary Jane (who, of course, is a redhead) and a redhead for Gwen (who is a blonde). Well, I'm not quite ready for that question; I'm still pondering what special effect will turn Topher Grace (of Win a Date With Tad Hamilton fame) into Venom.
(By the way, check out my Hostel review, online now.)

Monday, January 16, 2006

"But I'm not Dead!"

An Associated Press news article has the story of an Indian man whose village now shuns him because they believe him to be dead. Of course, him walking around, talking to people isn't quite enough proof, as they regard him to be a ghost of some sort.
Now, if Ghostbusters has taught me anything, it's that ghosts are usually round and green (like Slimer), floating on spectral electric chairs, trapped in a painting of some kind or the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man (alright, he isn't actually a ghost, but a physical manifestation of Ghozer, but we're not picky here).
Sadly, rural Indians apparently have no access to classic '80s comedies.
In other News-
  • "Prehistoric 'Kitchen' Found in Indiana" - Prehistoric Wife Curiously Unaccounted for.
  • New Jersey has chosen a new state slogan: "Come see for yourself." This is seemingly innocuous, but, as astute readers will remember, New Jersey was recently found to be the source of an odd syrupy odor. I theorize that New Jersey is now involved in some kind of evil plot (possibly involving syrup), and the new state slogan is not a kindly invitation, but a dare to discover their dastardly doings. Fear New Jersey, and the terrifying New World Order they hope to unleash.
  • Lastly, did anyone notice that, in last night's "24" premiere episode, they used the same newscaster that "Arrested Development" uses? I like that he was in two Fox series with such contrasting tones. I guess they take place in the same universe. He hasn't been credited with the 24 appearance on yet. (Apparently, he's an actual anchor in California)

Saturday, January 14, 2006

This blog now going Renegade, Reynolds style

According to a recent law, it is now illegal to "utilize any device or software that can be used to originate telecommunications or other types of communications that are transmitted, in whole or in part, by the Internet… without disclosing his identity and with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any person." (see Kotaku post and CNET article it references)
In other words, one can't annoy someone over the internetwithout using one's real name.
And as I don't disclose my real name in this blog, and I could potentially annoy someone...I am now illegal.
Awesome! Wonder if this will raise my "street cred."

(Update: Am currently using real name. No longer fit to wear Reynolds-style mustache.)

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Feeling Validated

If you were watching that transcendent Colbert Report last night, you may have noticed that robots have made his vaunted "threatdown" (video here). Apparently, the Mars Rovers have refused to power down, despite their projected operational life being long over.
Of course, this blog has long railed against the imminent threat that robots pose to our society, our children and, yes, our Lucky Charms. I'm glad that such a powerful celebrity as Stephen Colbert has lent his fame to this noble cause.
However, Mr. Colbert, the threat robots pose does not only reside on our red neighbor planet: the robots are conspiring against us even in our own country. By only mentioning the evil robots on Mars, the show has created the impression that the threat is far off, when it is, in actuality, at our very doorstep.
Warn the people, Mr. Colbert!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

"Sudoku:" Word of the Year?

According to a Kotaku post, "sudoku" was named word of the year by the Oxford English Dictionary.
God, 2005 must've been an extremely slow year in terms of new word generation. We should employ people whose sole job will be to create words better than "sudoku."
Seriously, a word game named "word of the year." Does anyone else feel left out of today's culture? I mean, when I was growing up, I was told that television was the way to keep up with culture. Then, they go and change the rules on me! Bastards.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A Half-Experience

Yesterday, I was watching television when I caught something quite odd. G4 was interviewing director Uwe Boll on a show called "Attack of the Show."
Now, let's think this through:
A semi-director was being interviewed for an almost news show, by a pseudo-interviewer, for a quasi-network.
I'm surprised the universe didn't collapse in on itself.
Now, I will not discuss the merits or lack thereof of director Uwe Boll (to be fair, I have not seen his pictures - they could be the next coming of "Citizen Kane" for all I know). However, in celebrity journalism, don't you just hate how the interviewers have to interview people with an eye toward interviewing them again? In other words, if the interviewer thinks the interviewee is full of shit, the interviewer is unable to say anything, for fear of losing future interviews.
I'm pretty sure the G4 guy thought Boll sucked, but was unable to say so.
Thus, we are left with a cycle of uninteresting interviews...but at least we get a lot of them!
Certainly, this is by no means an original thought, but it still annoyed me to no end.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Racing the Robotic Cars

Gizmodo has a post up about a robotic Volkswagon Toureg that won a race against other robotic vehicles (presumably).
Joystiq has a post up about a PSP-controlled '94 Honda Civic.
Anyone thinking what I'm thinking?
Robot car race!
Though, since the PSP-controlled car is technically controlled by humans, it would be a human-machine competition a la John Henry.
I asked Bonzo (this site's prognosticating monkey) which car would win, and was informed that the PSP car would lead for most of the lap, but get bricked right at the finish line.
(Damn Sony! If only you released quality games for the PSP, you wouldn't have doomed the human race to extinction.)

Worst. Movies. Ever.

Now, January is not known for it's quality movie releases but, good lord, does this month look bad. Take a gander at some of the releases slated for this month:
  • Bloodrayne - directed by the notorious Uwe Boll. Starring the wooden (metallic?) Kristanna Loken of Terminator 3 fame. Need I say more?
  • Last Holiday - Queen Latifah doesn't die. This movie trying to beat out Taxi for highly-contested Worst movie of Queen Latifah's career title.
  • Underworld Evolution - Despite starring Kate Beckinsale, will likely be more boring than its predecessor. God damn, was that movie bad.
  • Big Momma's House 2 - Either movie executives really love Martin Lawrence, or really hate moviegoers. Or both.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Smellin' (good?) in New Jersey

Widely reported in the New York media was the phenomenon of the city smelling good for a short period of time. Of course, this was earth-shattering news.
Well, today we have the New York Times' follow-up: the sweet, syrupy scent may have come from...New Jersey? Citing wind and the apparent trail of the scent, the Times Metro article presents the case that New Jersey was the olfactory originator. This may pave the way for the utterance of one of the least-heard sentences in human history: "Hey, is that the sweet aroma of New Jersey?"
Bonzo the Monkey's prediction of the day: Big Momma's House 2 will surpass the original in both quality and box-office returns. Bonzo also recommends you avoid sand for the coming week.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Old multiple-child movie beats new multiple-child movie

Reporting on the burgeoning trend of too-many kid movies: I thought the too-many kid genre had ended with Cheaper by the Dozen and their credibility-stretching 12 kids.
Well, this holiday season saw not one, but two movies based on 10+ kid families, the sequel to Cheaper by the Dozen (creatively named Cheaper by the Dozen 2) and Yours, Mine, and Ours, which upped the ante by having a record-total 18 kids.
Now, I know many of you are asking who won this battle of the multiple-child-movie titans? Well, despite having 6 fewer kids, Cheaper by the Dozen 2 has won both the critics and the audiences over. Cheaper by the Dozen 2 has scored a robust 9% rating from, whereas Yours, Mine, and Ours scored a mere 6% rating. That means, of course, Cheaper by the Dozen 2 kids are worth a full .75% each, while Yours, Mine, and Ours children are only worth .33% each. Also, Cheaper by the Dozen 2 has grossed more than Yours, Mine, and Ours, providing a heartening example that, in these times of appealing to the lowest common denominator, the American public still has taste.
The real question is, of course, how does this augur for the movie industry? Are we going to see an escalating arms battle between multiple-child movies? Will next year's crop have 20, 22, or (God forbid) even 25 kids? Are we condemned to an upward spiral of too-many-children movies? Where will this insanity end?

More unpredictability

Last post, I mentioned the likelihood of predictions from experts being, well, spectacularly wrong. I found another interesting piece relating to predictions, written by Michael Crichton, a lecture called "Fear, Complexity, & Environmental Management in the 21st Century" (it's on his webpage). In it, he notes the more entertaining "doomsday scenarios" of the 20th century (global cooling, cancer caused by power lines, world overpopulation), and how wrong they were. "Experts" say fascinating things, and bring up interesting points, but I wouldn't like to wager on their success. It's odd that, no matter how often these pundits and experts are wrong, they continue their employment (imagine if surgeons succeeded less than 33% of the time).
By the way, the New Yorker article I mentioned last post can be found here.
I mentioned in the last post that a monkey, picking randomly, has more chance of being right than a expert in a particular field. To put my money where my mouth is (I believe somewhere on my face), I have employed a monkey, Bonzo, to act as an expert for this blog.
Utter Lack of Cleverness: So, Bonzo, how's the stock market going to do this year?
Bonzo: (looks uninterested, peels a banana, obviously indicating that the market will be flat.)
ULC: Bonzo, how will the state of politics fare this year?
Bonzo: (throws own feces, indicating mudslinging to come.)
ULC: Who will win the Super Bowl, Bonzo?
Bonzo: Colts 35, Seattle 17