Sunday, November 6, 2011

Resistance 3

Is Resistance Useless?


 The number 3 is magical this season.  We have Resistance, Gears of War, Battlefield, Uncharted and Modern Warfare 3 just waiting to blow away our minds.  Resistance 3 was the first to come out and its definitely the under dog in the list.  It's a PS3 original with not a huge following behind it compared to the other big guns.  With that said, Resistance puts a very solid effort together.

Resistance tells the story of an alien virus that infects the Earth and creates an army of Chimera beings.  Like most alien games, the intrusive invaders are feral, mindless beasts hellbent on destruction and yet they are smart enough to build weapons, space crafts and huge towers.  In the third Resistance, you play Joseph Capelli, a former soldier who decides to ignore the whole alien invasion thing and start a family.  Unfortunately, opportunity knocks, and Joseph must journey with a doctor into alien occupied New York to stop a worm hole.

Anyone who has just gotten comfortable with Resistance 2 will notice some differences.  This comes with pros and cons.  The major change is that you no longer have recovering health (unless you unlock the cheat).  If you are low on health you need to scour the area for a health kit.  This gets annoying because you have to leave the heat of battle to look for a health kit.  Sometimes you are pinned down by fire and you have one bar of health left and there's absolutely no hope for you of getting out.  The upside is that its harder to kill you than in the second one.

Resistance also removed the two guns at a time rule in favor of the Doom style buffet of weapons.  This was a smart idea because you never really got much exposure to guns in R2.  Now you can pull out an ice gun, electricity gun, machine gun, tag gun, shotgun, missile launcher and mutator at any second.  The reason behind having millions of guns at your disposal is the ability to upgrade them as you use them.  Your shotgun gets flame rounds, the electricity gun develops an arc caster that shocks multiple enemies and the carbine gets a bayonet.  This makes every gun useful in its own way and necessary for different sections.  The only drawback is that there are no hotkeys to get a certain gun.  You have to stop the action and pick out a gun in order to use it.

The campaign mode is pretty straight forward.  You don't have one epic journey as much as you have a lot of levels with mini games inside of them.  In one level you are defending a bar from enemies coming out of a drop ship.  In another level you are running through the sewers trying to fend off the egg hatchlings.  Some levels start off slow, while others propel you straight into the action.  One of the new concepts that Resistance 2 didn't have is the open ended battlegrounds where you can strategize how you get into the battle.  Overall, the levels are all fast paced and gripping in their own way.  You can also get into the action with a friend over co-op.  You either have a human friend or an online friend, but the game has no matchmaking service to help you find an online friend.  That means you'll actually have to meet someone face to face and talk to them (shudder).


Resistance has always had a confusing story and I am convinced that the writers are as confused as we are.  It almost seems like they were trying to fuse Half-Life, Gears of War, Left 4 Dead, Call of Duty 2 and Halo into one epic bundle.  The result is a muddy universe that no one can get sucked into.  I groan at games where you have to go to Wikipedia in order to understand their story.  I'm not majoring in Resistance Studies so why do I have homework?  Resistance 3 has some of the best cut scenes and touching moments, which is not the biggest feat considering that the other 2 games had as much drama as bread mold.  After six hours the campaign ends and the final cutscene drops the curtain on the franchise. No epic ending, no twisted plot turns and absolutely no super boss-it just ends.   Resistance seems to live off its crazy gameplay and innovative weapons more than its story.

Multiplayer is changed from the previous two games.  You no longer get XP just by shooting people; now you have to kill your opponent to level up.  This means that I didn't get points for some matches because I couldn't get a single kill.  Resistance's multiplayer plays a lot like Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare.  You select your class, perks and you get more stuff as you level up.  The gameplay loves throwing perks, berserks and tons of little upgrades at you so that you feel like you are doing stuff.  Some of the perks include having a mirage of yourself to distract enemies and the ability to track footsteps.  But even with all those little add-ons it's hard to get into the action if you are not an intense multiplayer addict.  The second Resistance gave you much more incentive to stick it out because of partial XP rewards and the fact that your perks would build up over time instead of waiting for you to get 3 kills in a row.  It's not a trashy multiplayer by any means, it's just not as easy to get into.

The graphics are a mixed bag.  The game is excellent at portraying a war torn post apocalyptic America.  Each level is beautiful in its own way.  but the textures on some of the aliens are a little weak.  I've always had a problem with the fact that the Chimera race has no distinct art concept.  It's almost as if the artists copy pasted their textures onto Left 4 Dead and Halo enemies.

Resistance 3 is all about Joseph Capelli leaving his comfortable life with his wife and child to end a war.  He had a choice to make and he chose the greater good.  Sounds very similar to Jesus in the choices he had to make.  Jesus could have chosen to stay in Heaven, but he opted to do ministry on Earth.  Jesus could have chosen to live the rest of his years on Earth, but he choose to get arrested and crucified for our benefit.  Reminds me of the Bible verse from Phil 2:5-6

 Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn't think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human!

 Resistance 3 was supposed to be a counter for Xbox fans getting Gears of War 3.  While Gears of War got higher praises because of story, I don't think Resistance is out of the running.  The gameplay is tight and intense, the weapons are insanely fun and ultimately you are going to have a good romping time.  But if you already own the other two Resistance games than you should think long and hard before you shell 60 bucks to get this one.



Score out of 7

Graphics and Sound 5: Gorgeous vistas and environments, but not so pretty monsters.

Gameplay 6: Fast and intense campaign modes with exciting weapons.  You'll be done with the campaign mode in 6 hours.  Finding health kits and changing weapons takes you out of the action.

Multiplayer 5: Multiplayer is kind of slow for newcomers. It competes fairly well with the top shooters of today, but it still lacks some polish.

Content 3: It wears its M rating like a badge.  Lots of blood, gibbing and swearing.  Jesus' is mentioned more in this game than in some books of the Bible.  The mutator gun is not for the squeamish.

Final 5:  A very solid effort from Insomniac Games.  They still prove that they have a handle on the FPS market.  I'm relieved that I don't have to go solely to Halo to get my sci-fi shooter fix.  But I wish some of the elements that made Resistance 2 so great were in here.


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Guide To Parody/Satire Movies

Scary Movie 1-4, Date Movie, Superhero Movie, Naked Gun, Disaster Movie, Top Secret, Airplane 1-2, Epic Movie, Here Come The Spartans, Hot Shots, Hot Shots Part Deux, Silence of the Hams, Vampires Suck and Loaded Weapon all have something in common...they could not make more money than Titanic.  But strangely that is okay because all those movies would have no problem mocking Titanic.  The irreverent clown inside each one of us loves the slapstick parody movie, but due to a consistent steaming pile of crappy offerings we have been afraid to watch them.  This post does not want to solve this dilemma, but remind us what made us fall in love with the parody movie.

Here's what we love about parody movies:

1. Run-On Jokes- whenever a joke involves an ever evolving list of crazier and crazier jokes.






2. Popular Culture Inside Joke- using some popular time piece from culture into your video.  Jive talk was taken from the movie Shaft.  No one remembers Shaft's version.




3. Puns- it's the little stupid jokes that make us shout "genius" when we hear them.




4. The Fart in Church- taking something meant to be serious and making it sound silly at the last second



5. Actor debuts- it's always a fun Easter Egg to see a well known character pop out of nowhere




6.  The Set-up- jokes that are prepared in such a way that something silly can easily come after them.

















Sunday, October 9, 2011

Michael Bay Awarded For Best Slow Motion Transformer Jump

After a three movie struggle, acclaimed director, Michael Bay, is receiving the award for most slow motion large robot jumps in the air.  With a staggering 100 slow motion jumps, taking up a solid hour of Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Michael Bay has earned this prestigious award.

At the award ceremony Michael Bay had this to say, "Some directors strive for plot clarity and riveting emotional scenes, but I want my movies to be about robots tumbling through the air in slow motion.  It's never been done and I am pretty good at it."

Those who shared this honor with Michael Bay clearly confessed that his movie had the most tumbling robots jumping in slow motion of any genre in existence.  Due to his fear that a movie might try to steal this feat, Michael Bay made sure that no scene was left untouched by his patented robot tumbling through the air in slow motion.

"What I was trying to capture," he commented, "is that robots sometimes jump and when they do jump its important that the audiences truly capture it frame by frame repeatedly.  I didn't want the audience leaving the theater wondering 'I wonder if robots can jump slowly.'"

Though not without its obstacles, some of the execs tried to hamper Michael Bay's style with character development, romance, and robots that stood perfectly still on the ground.  It didn't take away from the goal he was trying to accomplish.  Though in one seen, Shia Lebeouf was going to turn into a robot so he could jump through the air slowly.

Analysts say that if the slow motion jumps were taken out of the movie it would only be twelve minutes long.  Michael Bay commented on this saying, "I don't make robots jump in slow motion through the air because it automatically makes them better; I do it because I have an obvious compulsive obsession and need help immediately."

We look forward to Michael Bay's newest movie, Jumpo the Slow Motion Jumping Robot.

Avengers Reboot in the Making



The Avengers movie is scheduled to hit theaters in May 2012, but Marvel studios is already setting up the reboot for April 2012.  Seems a bit premature?  Apparently the Studio thinks that the movie is way too outdated and completely forgettable and thus a reboot is coming out to bring the older one into the modern age.

Prebooting, or remaking a movie before it comes out, is becoming all the rage in cinema trends.  It started with simple reboots of movies in the 70's and 80's like Tron and Captain America.  But current fan stats show that reboots are not coming out fast enough.  One fan stated: "Spiderman is so old.  It came out in 2001, but that was like fifty years ago.  We need something fresh."

To answer the cry for rebooting demands, Hollywood has set up a branch of writers who are directly prebooting.  Just recently Kevin Smith wrote the script to the new Flash movie and then threw out and started writing Flash BeginsConan the Barbarian is receiving a reboot, but not a reboot of the one that just came out.  They are prebooting a release of Conan that they are planning to make in 2013.  Director of prebooting, Al Jacobs said, "We have to stay one step ahead of the movies that haven't been made yet.  Right now we are working on some preboots for Toy Story 4, Indiana Jones 5 and Footloose 3.  The trick is to remake the movie before the movie is made."

Movies like Batman Begins and Iron Man are starting to show their rust and that is exactly why prebooting needs to be made.  Hollywood needs to let the cinema enthusiasts know that they not only can make something that was already made, but they can remake something that hasn't even been made yet.  With today's technology running at break neck speed making a movie with an original idea seems ancient.  They now need to make sure a movie has the most current technology at the very moment it is made.

Movies are coming equipped with self-prebooting technology.  Instead of a production company having to fear that a movie might get one year old the movie can automatically reboot itself.  This technology was shown at a premiere in NYC as the audience was treated to a reboot of Ironman Begins.  During one of the scenes where Ironman is flying through the air, the movie automatically paused, downloaded new actors and green screen technology and rebooted itself. Robert Downey Jr. commented on this, "The technology is amazing.  We might never need a new script again."

But prebooting may have its critics.  Some argue that this has made Hollywood writers lazy and copacetic.  But head writer of the preboot of Jurassic Park Begins, Jeff Winters, had this to say about it, "There's a lot of hard work in copy and pasting other people's scripts.  It's even harder getting inspiration for a reboot that hasn't even been made yet."

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

A Tribute to 90's Game Shows

Yea for obesity!

What I have always wanted to do on certain game shows:

* Kick one of the token stealing guards in the junk for jumping out at me in Legends of the Hidden Temple

*  Eat the giant kiddie pool of Ice Cream Sundae, instead of trudging through it in Double Dare.

* Get the highest score ever in the history of video games on Nick Arcade

* Get past the final round of Singled Out and then admit that I am gay.

* Try to sell Visine eye solution to Ben Stein, while trying to win his money in Win Ben Stein's Money

* Start throwing pieces of the Agro Crag at Mike O' Malley in Guts

Ask out the referee Moe in Guts

* Keep gunning for a physical challenge on every Double Dare question no matter how easy it was

* Create a secret handshake with Omar Gooding in Wild and Crazy Kids

* Fake an epilepsy seizure when Nick Arcade puts me in the video game

* Knock over pieces of the plastic set on Legends of the Hidden Temple to get to the next room



Prizes:

Huffy Mountain Bike
L.A. Lights Shoes
Casio Keyboard

The Desire Chart of 90's Game Shows

100% Nick Arcade- I get prizes for playing video games.  Strangely, none of those prizes are video games
90% Double Dare- The only studio you could ensure that an elderly person would not be at.
75% Legends of the Hidden Temple-  I have to kayak in a raging pool all because Pocahontas was a legend
50% Win Ben Steins Money- I could get at least 50 bucks in right answers
35% Guts- I get to prove to Australian Moe how out of shape I am
20% Figure It Out- Why won't the kid from Pete and Pete understand my cool hobby


Australia did not exist in my world until I met you Moe.

Host Hierarchy:

GUTS Mike O' Malley: That guy from Yes Dear
DOUBLE DARE Mark Summers: Do not get him dirty
WILD AND CRAZY KIDS Omar Gooding:  Not to be confused with the Reading Rainbow guy
SINGLED OUT Chris Hardwick:  Was it hard being overshadowed by Jenny McCarthy and than Carmen Electra?

Don't you dare come near me with that grass stain!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Mike List: Hanna The Movie


  1. It’s Kill Bill + Raising Helen = The Cute Identity
  2. What’s more uncomforting: Elk entrails or European people?
  3. Every fight scene was like the director rushed through it and got bored
  4. Techno running motifs were 100% spot on.
  5. Hanna, aka Agent Hanna Banana
  6. They really shove the artistic metaphor of the last scene down your throat.
  7. Sometimes the best way to protect yourself from the CIA is to tell them where they can hunt you down.
  8. Bond Villain signature: Tiny European shorts
  9. Moral of the story: mom’s don’t let their daughters grow up to be trained killers.

The Mike List: What if the Bible was written like famous children’s books?


 Choose Your Own Adventure

“Turn to 2nd Corinthians if Eve bites the forbidden fruit. Turn to Revelations if she refuses.”

Where the Sidewalk Ends

Moses had no doubt He refused to take the Israelites Out.
He would lead the sheep. And tidy the keep. And feed the trout.
But he refused to lead The Israelites out.

Redwall

“Moseswood and Aaronthorn sat for vittles at the Passover perch to have some lambberry stew and warm cider bitter herbs.”

Dr. Seuss

“Christ was afflicted on the crucifox while all the nasty sneetches threw their fish and lox. Crucified on the crossilu, the tender Christ sang ‘I forgive you’ The Pilate’s heart grew three sizes that day.”

Goosebumps

“And then as Noah entered the Ark a giant monster jumped at him.
Chapter 2
Nope, it was just a cat. But behind the cat was a real monster.
Chapter 3
Wrong again. It was just a horse. But behind that horse was an even bigger monster.”

Chronicles of Narnia

” Aslan declared with a roar ‘whoever does not setup parapets on their roof for their neighbor will surely get their face eaten off. Thus declares Aslan.”

Where’s Waldo?

“Go out in all the world and get lost in it until someone finds you. Seek and you shall find. Knock and the man with one red sock will be revealed to you.”

Thursday, May 12, 2011

5 Pop Culture Trends That Need To Die Right Now

1. Cooked Comedians

Dane Cook lives by a very complex artistic comedy formula.  I could get into the algorithms of how he makes jokes, but it's best if you see the formula yourself.  (80-90's reference) Punched it in the face (insult with intense stare).
EXAMPLE:
I saw some Care Bears walking down the street so I PUNCHED THEM IN THE FACE and said, "I guess I don't care."

I saw some 80's snap on bracelets the other day so I PUNCHED THEM IN THE FACE and said, "oh snap"

It was funny the first few times, but now all the young frat boy comedians think they are that funny.  I bring to mind Daniel Tosh and Nick Swardson.  Apparently all you need is Mountain Dew and a birth certificate in the 80's to tell these jokes.  Just think about the Dane Cooks we are getting in the future.

I saw some Martian Go go dancers from Zebulon star systems so I LASERED THEM IN THE FACE and said, "Zeb you later!"



2. Auto Tune Everything

We can all agree that Youtube talent ranges from hidden genius to drunk guy in front of a camera.  The recent trend is auto tuning stuff that isn't yours.  If you are lucky enough to buy a $20 software with an auto tune function than you are 98% closer to being  a Youtube star.  I haven't caught on yet because I came from a very picky time where you actually had to use your own stuff.  Turns out you just need someone's intellectual property and a hatred for originality.  Here's a video of a guy auto tuning a fart.

  I saw Britney Spears using an auto tuner so I PUNCHED HER IN THE FACE and said "You are out-o-tune"

3. Cats with learning disabilities

The way I imagine this happening is that a bunch of people got together and said, "we really need to make an animal look and sound more inept than it is."  After hours of study and a few episodes of Grey's Anatomy, the internet decided to make cats the utmost asinine creatures on Earth. These cute and loveable creatures cannot spell, are obsessed with burgers and only wish ill will on each other.  Any creative exercise that requires you to misspell words, take pictures of your cat and try to think like them is pure creative genius.  I only wish we hadn't let the other animals off so easily.  What if gerbils had German accents and obsessed about taxes?  What if we made hedgehogs look more constipated?  The possibilities are endless.



I saw a cat eating a cheeseburger and I PUNCHED IT IN THE FACE and said "Wud U Haz Friez wit dat?"

4. Vague Status Depression

Every once in awhile you will see a status update where a comrade is trying to be specifically angsty and yet really vague.  They are angry at someone, but they don't want to name that person, but at the same time they are hoping that person knows and repents immediately.  It usually looks like this.

Status Update:  Stabbed in the back and now I know how it feels.

Usually when you try to be the good neighbor and probe their feelings that's when they act like you were blowing it out of proportion.

Status Update:  I hate my life and darkness is all I feel in my eternal frustration.
Me:  Dude?  You want to talk.
Them:  What?  Why?
Me:  I think you just committed Staticide.
Them:  If every time I wish my death and eternal torture in Hell is going to make you go off the deep end this relationship is not going to work.

When did Facebook become the passive aggressive therapist?  It doesn't end there.  Now kids are taking angsty lyrics from decidedly depressing bands and taking their words out of context.  Still it's vaguer than that thing with that guy from that movie.

Status Update:  My only heart is the one you cut and blood from within drowns the love we had between us.
Me:  Dude?  You okay.
Them:  What?  Why?  Oh those are just lyrics.
Me:  Sounds pretty depressing?
Them:  Not really.  I took it from a Purina Dog Food Commercial.

Challenge:  Next time someone puts up an angsty lyric or depressing lyric, try this status reply for size.

Status Update:  In my vast confusion, the darkness and pain creates our romance.
Me:  I took the liberty of sending this status to your guidance counselor.  Your mother and I have been coordinating with a self-esteem life coach.  We scheduled you in for 2pm this Wednesday.  I got some of your buddies to come by your house and remove any sharp objects or toothbrushes you could use to harm yourself.  Also the local pastor will be making daily visits and including your name in the Sunday prayer list.  We will fight this together buddy!!!



I saw an emo kid on the street and PUNCHED HIM IN THE FACE, "cry about that emo kid."

5.  Zombie this and zombie that!

So the makers of every video game, t-shirt design and B movie decided to get together and milk a genre till the udder had gotten infected and broke off.  The genre was Zombies.  Now you have 6 million catchy t-shirts, 40 iphone games involving plants, zombies, cattle and shotguns and tons of "______Of The Dead" movies.  We've made perseverating on a beaten dead horse an art form.  There are people with OCD who don't obsess as much as we do on zombies.

Ironic that we keep bringing the dead horse back to life just to beat it again.

But don't worry.  The award winning script writers know how to keep it fresh.  When in doubt, add Lincoln or Jesus and the stuff writes itself.

Since Hollywood needs lots of help to kick start a new OCD, I made a list of things they could milk.

French speaking pirates, communist vampires, turtles that mutate, quality script ideas, racist poltergeists, Enchantress mummies, sock puppets that know too much, werewolves that steal our breakfast foods, vegetarian Frankenstein, mermaids who trip on acid, salad that thinks for itself, self aware sea sponges, Jihadist Amish folk, puppies who hate democracy, Mahatma Gandhi vs. Possessed Cheerleaders...

Cheese and Rice people!  America is lowest on the education and health system, why the heck can't we get TV watching right.  Look, you can even add a few zombies in any one of my ideas if you have to.



I saw George A Romero across the street so I PUNCHED HIM IN THE FACE and said "Stop making bad movies!" 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Whatif: Halo Was a Kart Racer?

Upload Instructions:
Go to the link here: www.dropitto.me/bravenewtoy
Type in the password: art
Insert your pic and give 24 hours for me to post it.
Don't forget to write your name on the piece. 

Mike Mordenga

Brave New Toy: Whatif: Mario Was an FPS?

Brave New Toy: Whatif: Mario Was an FPS?: "What would it look like if the Italian plumber had his own shooter game? Upload Instructions: Go to the link here: www.dropitto.me/braven..."

Whatif: Mario Was an FPS?

What would it look like if the Italian plumber had his own shooter game?

Upload Instructions:
Go to the link here: www.dropitto.me/bravenewtoy
Type in the password: art
Insert your pic and give 24 hours for me to post it.
Don't forget to write your name on the piece.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Emery- We Do What We Want



Emery hasn't strayed much from their two grounded roots 1) screamo and 2) vague relationship feelings.  But anyone looking for their patented harmonic chants and melodramas will not be disappointed.  Emery pounds out ten tracks that fuse punk attitudes, emo riffs and a lot of headbanging.

The album starts off with "The Cheval Glass" which sets up a barrage of throaty gurgle screams, but then breaks into the ballad of creamy singing.  Fast forward track three and you will have a good idea of what the rest of the album will consist of:  A sporadic rain of hardcore metal, mixed with ADHD lullabies.  It's hard to review an Emery album because of the constant shifts the songs take.  The punk riffs in "Anchors" and "Curse of Perfect Days," "I'm Not Here For Rage I'm Here For Revenge (More Than Your Hook Up)" will get you singing in the car.  The power anthems in "You Wanted It" and "Daddy's Little Peach" will get your fist raising.  The last two songs: "Fix Me" and "I Never Got To See The West Coast" are the softer and more gentle side of Emery.

We Do What We Want is a powerful message about how we as a people follow our own instincts.  The messages aren't clear exactly because of the vague poetry and use of pronouns, but some songs have powerful messages.  "Scissors" is about an argument about abortion.  "Daddy's Little Peach" is about the facade of being old enough to have the party life.  "I Never Got To See The West Coast" is an acoustical cry about suicide thoughts. Probably the clearest ballad is "Fix Me," where Toby admits than nothing can help him but Jesus.  I think clear coherent messages are a little overrated to Emery because their audience is more prone to copy pasting an angry lyric piece on their status just for the feeling.  But for anyone picking apart their lyrics they will find some sage life wisdom and experience.  I can definitely relate to "Addicted to Bad Decisions."

Emery still continues to be a blender project of lullabies, screams and punk.  It's everything you love in Emery and hopefully you are not tired of.  Will they change in future albums?  It's hard to tell with a band who can't even keep one song in the same genre, but at least the fans they have will never be letdown.



B-
+ Good energy
+Great mix of ballad and screaming

- What are you talking about?
- Still prefer the ballad over the screaming

Saturday, April 9, 2011

5 Trends on Female Christian Dating Profiles




 I don't want to brag, but I have seen a lot of dating profiles as of recent and I have noticed a powerful trend.  I am talking about the FACE (Female, Athletic, Christian, Evangelical) crowd and their insistence with using the same 5 pieces of data.  Luckily, I have been spared this rhetoric by meeting some very nice people on some dating sites, but as for the others, they most likely fall into these traps.

1.  Likes Hiking

Every girl that has 2 legs loves hiking.  I'm sure there's some girl who loves the idea of being stationary and still, but as for the others, hiking is like crack.

We all like hiking.  Why?  Hiking is how your legs take you to new places.  People who want to go to the bathroom or need to buy groceries like hiking.  Unless your car is parked inside your house, next to your bed and easy to roll into, then odds are that you like hiking to.

Hiking is not a sport even though it rhymes with biking.  You can't get points or medals for hiking.  I imagine in some part of the world hikers are rated on how much breath was taken away by the scenery.

Contestant 1: The mountains were okay (bronze)
Contestant 2:  The mountains were great (silver)
Contestant 3: The mountains are majestic!!! (gold)

I used to hike as a child, but it usually involved getting lost in the mall or the grocery store.  My mom would then have to hike to find me.  She would get a very low score because of all the scenery she didn't take in.

All in all, everyone likes to hike.


2. Grandma

There is something so wonderful about your mom's mom that deserves to give this woman an honorary medal of achievement.  I'm not sure what grandma did to these Christian women, but they all agree that grandma is the driving force behind their lifestyle, growth, education, welfare, spirituality and the very fabric that makes up our being.

How grandma got ranked next to Mother Theresa and Nelson Mandela is beyond me, but apparently it was because of her pearls of wisdom, endless strength in tough situations and the ability to withstand the powerful forces of adversity against all odds.  I can only guess that a majority of Christian women had grandmas that fought on the frontline of Normandy in 1943, were captured and refused to reveal the OSS hideout of concealed Jews.  Somehow they escaped and lived honest and noble lives, telling their grandchildren the heroic stories of being a POW in the midst of the 3rd Reich.

My grandma's story is a bit different.  She made spaghetti sauce instead of fighting in WWII.  Pretty close...right?

Grandpa visits too.


3.  Christianese

The art of speaking like a Christian is a combination of Shakespeare words, things written on a baptism fountain and using lines from the movie Princess Bride.  FACE's love letting Christian words roll off their tongue in a poetic cacophony of textbook words and phrases that would make King Arthur blush.  In recent days, I have seen the topic of religious association answered like this.

Religion:  A blessed union of child and Christ, intertwining with the grace of the sacrificial lamb, who has anointed us through mercy in the baptisms of his kindness and everlasting peace.

Don't worry.  I have a translation.

Religion:  I'm Christian

Now, one would think that this irritable Bible syndrome of the mouth would stop at the religion question.  But this is how FACE's write their desires for their future husbands.

Seeking:  A mighty and noble scholar, stationed at the feet of Christ, leaning heavily on the truth scrolls of God's life changing breath.  And also entwined with the healing light of mature peace, granted liberally through the power of the Holy Spirit.  And also must like volleyball!!

Do not fret.  I have a translation.

Seeking: Christian who likes volleyball.

I can imagine that boys might feel a little intimidated by these laborious explanations of the Kingdom of Heaven.  I, myself, have thought "I'm stationed at the feet of Christ and I like volleyball, but I am not sure how entwined I am."  If it wasn't for Christianese I figure a lot of FACEs would just have profiles that say <See God>.



4.  Honesty and Genuine

When asked what they look for in a man, these two attributes pop up the most.  They are very humble requests and it makes sense that any girl should want these.  I can't imagine a scenario where a girl would lust after lies and falsehood.

Boy:  The sky is brown and I am 600 years old!!!
Girl:  You had me at hello.

The problem that I see here is that if you are a dishonest guy who is not genuine, you are probably not going to start speaking truth in answering this plea.

Girl:  Are you honest and genuine?
Boy:  (looks around shadily)  ...yesss?
Girl:  That's a load off my shoulders...how about a date?
Boy:  Great, we can go to my mansion in Italy, I'll pick you up on the flying car around 8.

Do you see the problem?



5.  Zoomed Out Photos

In conclusion, a great majority of FACEs love the zoomed out photo shot.  We are talking about the shot that shows the entire Swiss alps in the background and they are a yellow blip in the snow.  This very artistic shot boldly relays this message to the viewer, " Please use this overarching vista as proof of my height actuality."

If it wasn't for these massive zoomed pictures, we, the male gender, would not be able to determine that 1) she exists within a 3D realm where foreground and background coexist and 2) She's not agoraphobic.  This is a sigh of relief to those who always feel that Christian women are two dimensional shut-ins who pet cats in the basement all day.

Truth be told, these grandma loving hiker Christians are all over the dating world.  They are truly wonderful people to get to know and they will not hesitate to: share a grandma WWII adventure, go hiking in the alps, while someone takes wide photos or baptize you.  Just remember to bring a volleyball, a Bible and some nice walking shoes.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Christian Apocalypse Love Story Combines 2 Niche Markets

Christian entertainment may not have the best variety, but what it does do, it does very well.  In recent years, studies have shown that Christian audiences flock to apocalyptic thrillers (Left Behind Series, Apocalypse Dawn, The Omega Code, Judgment) and Old West/Amish love stories (Love's Abiding Joy, Love Finds a Home, Love Finds Wings)



Recent author Janette Dobson, has found the power play of a life time, combining both the Amish love story and the end of the world apocalypse.  It's called Love's True Final Reckoning.

The story is about a quiet Amish boy named Danny who owns a leather tanning house on the outskirts of the town.  He begins to notice Anna, the school girl teacher.  Anna falls in love with Danny, but she cannot reveal her secret, that she is the prostitute of Babylon that will ride the dragon in Revelations.  Having to decide between being a catalyst of end times or pursuing her love for Danny, Anna faces the many pressures of being an Amish school teacher who was anointed by Satan.  Meanwhile, God begins sending plagues and bowls of wrath upon the Earth to cleanse it of its impurity.  Will Danny avoid the corrupt one-world government to be with Anna or will he be second fiddle to her new lover--the Anti-Christ?

Grab the tissues and the newspaper because this story will grip your brain and your heart for a fast action packed thrill ride of romantic world destruction.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Killzone 3 (PS3)

Note:  I decided t try making my review into easy bullet points.  This is just an experiment. Tell me if you think it works better than paragraphs.


Killzone 3
Guerrilla Studios

Story: Your army, the ISA, has just assassinated the monarch of Helghan, Vesari. Now you have to escape an entire planet of angry soldiers as the Helghast hunt you down.  You play as Sev.
Style:  Technical and passionate soldier talk and cliche' cinema moments where the soldiers disobey the captain's orders in order to save a life.  The bad guys act and look like cyberpunk Nazis.
Thoughts: It's Medal of Honor mixed with Gears of War.  An interesting twist, but everyone is so tough and gritty that there isn't really any soldier you are rooting for.


Gameplay
FPS Style: A open warfare shooter with auto healing.  You also have the ability to duck-and-cover behind objects.
Mission: You are asked to clear out or eliminate certain threats most of the time.  Mostly you are just pushing through an enemy line to kill something or blow something up.  Sometimes you will go into a turret tank, a mech or an Intruder to use the massive machine guns and take down the big craft.  The most unique experience is controlling the jetpack to get from place to place.
 Difficulty: Bullets fly from everywhere meaning that it's impossible to find a safe position.  It's very easy to be taken out with just a few headshots.  Checkpoints are merciful and some levels have Rico, your squadmate, rejuvenating you if you die.  Enemy warriors love to throw grenades at you.
Weapons: All the machine guns and shotguns feel heavy and tight and allow for very satisfying impact.  The rocket launcher and grenades seem to have poor impact.  Melee has been stylized so that you are either crushing someone's eyes or slitting their throat.
Coop: Finally KZ3 has some coop play for those who actually have non-digital friends and a second controller.  It's nothing fancy, you just play the campaign with a friend. 
Thoughts: The style is a balance of chaos and tight controls.  The vehicle levels add some monotany breakers.  While the mission structure seems heavy on the "kill something" plan, the good controls make it easy to bear.  The duck-and-cover system seems pointless because enemies can still shoot you behind cover.


Multiplayer:
Modes: You have 3 modes, Guerilla Warfare, Warzone and Operations.  Operations is the newcomer, setting up specific stages to have objectives from either the ISA or Helghast perspective.  Cinematic moments show whether your team is winning or losing.  The other two modes are a team deathmatch and a mode that combines a lot of mini missions for each team to accomplish.
Noob Friendly: It is so easy to die that the gameplay feels like the original Rainbow Six.  On the other hand it's easy for you to nail three people just by sneaking up on them.
Depth: Each character gets 5 roles to upgrade: Infiltrator, Medic, Tactician, Marksman and Engineer.  These borrow somewhat from Team Fortress 2 in that you get the power to disguise yourself, build turrets and heal others.  Every time you level up in your class you can spend career points to update your skills.   
Maps: You get an assortment of arctic, jungle and urban levels, but you will have to spend mucho dollars on the DLC if you want more.
Thoughts: Operations mode seems to be the most immerse gameplay, leading players to use their class skills and gun crazy ways to finish objectives.  Death is so sensitive that even shotgun blasts to the shoulder lead to death.  This works for you and against you.  It's easy to get into and easy to be a part of multiplayer, but I wish the disc had a few more maps or modes.


Tech:
Graphics: Wide variety of linear locations ranging from the urban cities of the Helghan to the tropic Avatar world of the jungle.  Everything is sharp and color ridden.  The characters look a little pale sometimes in the cutscenes.
Sound: The voice track was glitchy on my game, leading NPC's to repeat what they were saying over and over.  Some of the lines of dialogue cut out before an NPC could finish a sentence.  The gunfire sound effects are really diverse and meaty.
Acting: Some of the lines feel like they were forced and it seems that 90% of the game is angry yelling soldiers, while the Helghast scenes are arguing and conniving Germans.
Framerate: Everything chugs along at a wonderful rate. 
Thoughts:  Graphics prove that PS3 knows how to treat their own games.  The scenery is stunning and worth the romp through endless bad guys.  Sound needs to be worked on in terms of acting and being non-glitchy.


Content
Swearing: The military has quite an array of colorful language.
God's Name: Very misused.
Blood and Gore: The blood spattering and melee makes some very up close and personal gore.
Redemptive Value: The soldiers might be cliche in their actions, but they prove that they care and look out for each other.  They would even go as far to disobey orders to save another soldier's life.  This is a living lesson when Jesus says: "Greater love has no one then this, that they give up their life for their friends." John 15:13.  You might have to kill a lot of people to get there, but this game shows the sacrifice of one life to save another.
Thoughts: While the blood and bullet impact makes for some of the satisfying gameplay, I think that the combination of bad language and the toughness of the characters makes this game hard to recommend.  I think Resistance 2 and Modern Warfare 2 would be better options.



Final Word: You are definitely playing the PS3's finest here.  Even though the gameplay is far from new, at least Guerilla is one of the few companies putting next gen quality into their games.  Every game should feel like this.
Pros: Great controls and gun feel.  Beautiful graphic scenery.  Operations Mode.
Cons: Wooden acting.  Glitchy sounds.  Truck driver's mouth.
Recommended For: Starved PS3 fan, Fans of Gears of War and Call of Duty
Overall:  B-

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Is Your Jesus Cosmic Enough?

Bring it on, world!

JESUS CHRIST: OMEGA STAR

I sat down with a nice girl from work one day and asked her if she ever wanted to go to one of my Bible Studies that a church hosted.  She smiled politely and told me "I am pagan and that has been around longer than Jesus."  What I did was nod politely and let it slide, but what I wanted to do was stand up and exclaim "Jesus is cosmic!  Epic Win!"

This leads to a great point that the Apostle Paul has brought up with many non-believers. There were key conversations where he made Jesus so big and glamorous that it fit every faith, station and lifestyle.  In other words, he made Christ cosmic.  This is not a comic book infatuation.  Jesus is the beginning and the end of existence, the first born of all creation, the pocket of all strength and protection and the very glue that holds existence together.

Take Paul's example to the Ephesians.  The church of Ephesus had major peer pressure from the town about Diana, The Goddess of the Hunt.  Diana, in Stregheria religion, was Queen of the Witches and was regarded as the creator of existence.

Paul helped the church debunk it by simply stating that before the world even existed God had chosen the Ephesians to be pure and blameless in him (Eph 1:4).  He states that no demigod created them because God and Jesus beat them to the punch.  Many modern readers extract a philosophy of Pre-election from this verse, but Paul's main argument is that God had in mind to give redemption to his creation before any goddess.

So this wonderful argument from Paul puts God as the creator who thought of you before the world began.  Not only does God stretch across the time continuum, but he set in place Christ at a certain time to fulfill his redemption in order to save us all (Eph 1:9).  This was an Ocean's 11 heist thousands of years in the making.

In the Acts of the Apostles, Paul finds himself looking at a Greek tribute to 'The Unknown God" and discovered that the Athens had a very loose understanding of God (Acts 17:22-23). The Athens were just covering their bases by trying to create a default god in case they missed one.  Paul assures them that the true God is not some statue, temple or stone, but it is the true God who is not far from anyone of us (v. 27).  He goes on to state that this God does not need food or offerings, but is, in fact, our movement, life and purpose of existence (v. 28).  This is one of the first times that Paul migrates a very Jewish rich God to cover the needs of the pagan community.  He is not just a story of the Jews, but the very life essence of all humanity.

Finally, Jesus is not just a static creation in history, made for one purpose, but shares the same super glory elements with God.  In Colossians 1:15, Paul starts his cosmic thesis saying that Jesus is the first born over all creation.  The world was made for his glory and by his authority and power (v. 16).  Not to mention that Jesus is also the power that holds all existence together (v. 17).  Jesus is a giant cosmic throne pwner in the great scheme of the world.  This also takes a lot of stress off worrying about who to vote for in 2012.

So let's recap.  God is before and beyond any time constraint, he is the power that is close to every community and his very essence holds everything together.  Jesus is the Lord over all power and thrones, he owns all of creation as the first son of God and he manages existence.


Jesus, Children Approved!



FINDING THE DOUBLE RAINBOW--WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

How is Jesus presented in our world today?  He seems to be a very tender and compassionate God, who cries at tragedy, laughs with beauty and wants to give a big ol' hug to anyone who crosses his path.  This tender quality of Jesus shows his love and mercy, which is how we connect.  And while these things are necessary for the humble qualities of Jesus, we are missing the trump card.

" Having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross." Colossians 2:15

We forget that God has super powers that effect us on a global scheme.  He can phase through time to choose us, he can reach everyone globally, and his power keeps us existing.  The Colossians verse above is God's greatest cosmic feat, taking every power that comes against him and publicly humiliating it by dying on the cross.  God can reach any nation, fill any mind and overpower any station of life.  He is already holding us together and near us in every way.

Revisiting Paul's argument in Acts, God is the power that gives breath and life and does not need any of our supplements to sustain Him.  He exists outside of us.  How many neo-cults and pagan lifestyles would just cease to exist if people just stopped following them?   What do the other powers of this world offer?  Who can claim such mastery over the universe?  How does this change our thinking?

This is a challenge to think like Paul in our godly message.  How does God overcome every part of everyone's existence through all time?  It goes without saying that we shouldn't be encouraged to crush people's faith systems, because we must show respect and love.  But the question remains, what can a cosmic Christ do for our world?
   

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

February Free Giveaway

Free Custom T-shirt!!

Do you want a t-shirt fitted to your awesomeness but cannot afford a designer or have poor hand-eye coordination skills?  This giveaway is for you!

Every month I will select a random person who comments on any of the blog entries.  All you have to do is write a response and make sure I can get back to you.  I will pick one every end of the month and get started on building a shirt of your choice.

Check out this shirt that I built for a friend who likes lemurs.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Little Big Planet 2

Little Big Planet 2


I have always been a big fan of PS3 innovation.  When the first Little Big Planet came out, I was excited to praise the accomplishments of a game that could stand on its own 2 legs.  How wonderfully creative it was to have a DIY mini game creator.  Now Little Big Planet 2 promises tons of game variation and loads of extras, but I keep finding myself at the same hurdle: do I have the strength and the patience?

Welcome to Little Big Planet, the only world where everything is built on the imagination.  You play as the splendidly eccentric sack boy, walking the world and collecting power ups.  Your job is to save the planet from the monstrous imagination monster: Negatron.  This isn't much of a story and no one expects you to play it because the true meat of LBP2 is in the community editor.  When you start building your own levels, creating your own story and designing your own world you are truly living up to the magic of LBP2.

With the sequel comes the tried and true level editor and real world interface, but now you can add various elements to make your own levels.  You can make shooting levels, racing levels and mini game levels.  My favorite examples are the sniper Tron level where you have to use a scope to kill sack boys, the birds eye view car destroyer game, and the perfect replica of Out of this World.  There is so much you can edit, create and fix that obviously LBP2 is a true sequel in every respect.  But this is one of those rare times where the sheer overload of options and elements actually weighs the game down.  LBP2 has such a steep learning curve that there is no possible way to become a casual fan.  As a Little Big Planet veteran I just wanted to get right into the new stuff, but that entailed sitting through an hour's worth of tutorials.  Half the tutorials I did not perform right and I got flustered.  Even after the tutorials I felt like I needed someone to walk me through.  I kid you not when I say that playing this game involves 3 hour chunks.



Perhaps such a demanding learning curve would be appropriate if this was a game that let you create your own unique video games and movies, but I found myself thinking "So what?  This is just a bunch of puppet creatures in levels that look like they were taken from Clockwork Knight."  This left me with the dichotomy of loving the idea of so much customization, but hating the limitation of everything being so kiddish.  This is such a bold plan, having the ability to create any kind of game level, video or mini game.  You can't complain that LBP has no replay value.  In fact, I could spend endless hours playing the community levels and seeing everyone's labor.  I just wish that there was a simple editor for people who wanted to build easy levels.  Perhaps if there was a template we could write over or a special editing screen that walked you through the building process instead of making you go through all 90 editing videos.

I found the main story levels lackluster the second time around. You can only collect so many stickers and avoid so many traps before you start thinking, "Wow, this isn't very deep." This is in sharp contrast to the editing modes.  The addition of new gadgets for your sackboy to shoot projectiles and grab objects is cool, but I would rather prefer some Crash Bandicoot over Little Big Planet.



Graphics are sharp and colorful, combining real life objects with some of the best textures I have seen.  Music is a strange array of fun, quirky and eccentric soundtracks. 

I don't hate this game, quite the opposite actually.  I wanted so badly to be part of the excitement of all it has to offer, but feel totally shunned by its deeper than hell learning curve.  This game is not for anyone with a full time job or a social life.  The best times you can have with this game is playing the creative levels of those who have no life.  You have 1 million pre-made levels to get lost in.



Little Big Planet dabbles with the idea that you are God--creator of your own world. There's so much customization and planning that comes into creating your own world that it kind of makes you go in awe over how big God is.  He obviously got over the learning curve of Earth, creating it perfectly for our enjoyment.  I'm sure God would be awesome at playing Little Big Planet, but I am utterly impressed with his world creating powers.  It makes you think: if God is so awesome at building this world, what else can he do in my life?

Review Round Up
+
Graphics are beautiful
So much to do
Community Levels Rock

-
Steep and frustrating learning curve
So much to do
Boring Story levels

C
 

Monday, February 7, 2011

Marvel Siege

Publisher: Marvel
Creators: Bendis, Coipel, Morales, Martin

Once in a great while, a villain gets up enough guts to pull a gigantic evil plot.  Siege is that plot.


The story is believable, but kind of random at the same time.  How long has Asgard been over Kansas and now they want to destroy it?  The face off between the New Avengers and the Dark Avengers is epic and The Sentry is really built up as the super psycho.  Lots of different teams also play a part in this story as well, but they are not that drawn out.  The biggest names that had storylines were Captain America, Norman Osborn, Loki and most of the Dark Avengers.  P.S. Norman, when you call your team the Dark Avengers you pretty much declare that they are evil.


The issue is built up into script dialogue and action panels.  Not much action happens in the beginning because Marvel felt the need to explain Osborn's actions to death.  It's a slow start, but at least it includes EVERYONE.  I've always admired Marvel for including newbies into their comic books no matter how much they know of the back story.  The one downside is they can't make any large plot changing assumptions.  That's why DC's colossal events are a bit faster (and more confusing).

   The artistic sense of the book is filled with up close reaction shots, sweeping pans of heroes and vistas of Asgard.  It captures the emotion and the dire of the situation.  Marvel truly knows how to show intensity in the grownup, even if that grownup is wearing a silly costume from the 70's.


Overall, I thought Siege was a great, albeit kinda slow, story.  It has a great lead in to Captain America and it's the perfect Good vs. Evil epic battle.  There was nothing earth shattering about the plot, nor was it the greatest fan service to the sci-fi fans, but it definitely put up an awesome fight.

B
+Good Epic Battle
+Facial features were spot on

-Kind of slow and safe

How to create a Super Bowl Ad




















































































My Super Bowl Ad:

Three women in bikinis are washing a pack of ostriches that have been a symbol of company quality for over 70 years.  Suddenly a baby wearing a sunflower suit is thrown at an Amish man's crotch, while Alex Trebek laughs at it maniacally.  Alex Trebek then gets into a Ferrari and darts in between landmines as a dragon flies behind him throwing helicopters at him.  As he goes off into the distance our company logo pops up on the screen.

American Mutual Liberty Banking
"Trust your money with us because we just blew one million of it for this." 


WHAT'S YOUR SUPERBOWL AD?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Christian Dating Book Titles (For The Blunt)

10. Turns Out She Treats Everyone Like That: A Guide To Illusions

9. Waiting For God: For Those Who Naturally Can't Attract Girls

8. Stop Commenting On Her Pictures!!-- A guide to not being creepy

7. Revisiting the Mail Order Plan: A guide to desperation relationships

6. Jesus Is Going To End The World Anyways: Stay Single

5. Stapling Your Pants On--And 1005 other ways to stay lust free

4.  Really?  That was it?--what to expect when the magic wears off

3. Missionary Dating: 50 ways to charm that man into Christ

2.  Lord of the Rings Dating Guide--How to give her the one Relationship to rule them all

1. Shouldn't You Be Submitting?  A Guide to Communicating Biblically With Your Significant Other

7 Robots That Think They Are Better Than You


It seems to be a common theme that robots become self-aware (only the ones that can kill) and automatically think that they can run our lives. Then it becomes the job of one human, who has street smarts and grit, to be the one who shuts the robot down. Luckily, these are all movie examples and there are no programmed creations that think they are better than the rest of the world.

Okay, maybe there's a few.
 THE MATRIX--The Machines




History: The machines were once a faithful servant to the human beings.  The machines became self aware and then no longer wanted to become some Proto-Abraham Lincoln slave to the man.  They created a peaceful robot community in the middle of the desert (colonization) and proceeded to live out their lives with blender and toaster living in harmony.  But the man didn't want his vacuum to be living in an apartment without him, so he tried to nuke the colony.  This resulted in war, with the robots clearly winning via their robot drills and power lasers.  Man was used as batteries for the robot world, but at least we were put in an alternate reality called the Matrix.

The Problem:  We were clearly in the wrong for building machines that could feel and think for themselves. Then to fix the mistake we tried to destroy our creation.  It's very similar to the Genesis story where God gave man free will and man turned around and used it against him.  The only problem is that the robots made a fatal mistake.  They tried to control their creator as a way of fixing the problem.  They thought they could create a perfect world where the brain believed it was 1999.  Creation tried to fix the problem of coexistence, but in the process neglected the fact that humans strive for truth.  We don't want to live in a world that isn't the truth, even if the real world looks like a Denny's garbage disposal after the apocalypse.  The machine's overestimated us and we ended up choosing a hero who would lead us out of the digital Egypt.  This particular hero was bad at Shakespeare, but at least he has a black belt.

Who Won:
Humans!  You cannot hide the truth from us.

2001 SPACE ODYSEE- Hal9000






History:  Hal 9000 was a robot created by Dr. Chandra in 1997 for The Discovery, a spaceship that was heading toward Jupiter.  Hal was setup to be a conversational and polite assistant that opened doors and regulated oxygen.  This is not the kind of robot you want to make self-actualized.  Unfortunately, he was programmed to know the true secret of why the vessel was heading toward Jupiter, but he had a contradicting program loop that gave him emotions, paranoia and xenophobia.  He began to have Vista like errors, having fear of the confrontation with the Jupiter aliens and the desire to share the true reason for the Jupiter flight.  How did he solve this dilemma?  By destroying the crew of the ship he would be free of having to share the information.  Sounds like a win-win.

The Problem:   Hal was made to be self-actualizing with secret keeping powers and the ability to understand emotions.  Basically, you are taking an emotional entity and dropping secrets and the threat of war.  This is much worse than asking an LSD addict to find something in the basement.  Much like how our cognitive messes up and influences our emotions and then loops around to further mess with our cognitive, Hal9000 is an obcessive compulsive paranoid schizophrenic WITH THE ABILITY TO OPEN THE DOOR HATCHES AND CONTROL OXYGEN!  Basically, the crew is putting their lives in the hands of a homeless man with Vietnam syndrome.  But we can learn something from Hal 9000 in terms of emotions vs. cognitive thinking.  Cognitive thinking is what you believe and emotions are how you express them.  If one is imperfect it ultimately screws up the other one.

Who Won:
Hal 9000--because killing us all would keep us from learning the secret.

 IROBOT--V.I.K.I



History:  Once again man thinks he can make robots so smart and helpful that they are able to help us with everyday tasks.  So man creates the robot that lives by three laws:
  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.
Sounds like a flawless plan.  We get the robots to change dirty diapers and they can't kick the crap out of us.  All this is regulated by a haunting robotic mainfame voice called V.I.KI.  With her in control she makes a startling discovery: human beings are idiots.  In fact, if she doesn't get her robot army together to beat the living junk out of us, we might do something stupid like use freewill.  Therefore, V.I.K.I thinks she is helping us live longer by obliterating us if we do not obey her curfew.  Luckily, we have the man who starred in Bagger Vance to save the day.

The Problem:  V.I.K.I had pure intentions and she thought she could enforce them on us.  In her binary world she believed that we would be sitting in a circle singing Kumbyah, while obeying a strict regiment of 9pm bedtimes and soy diets.  Usually a robot with that kind of an idea would be given a virtual wedgie, but this particular one has a megaton army at its disposal.  V.I.K.I follows the protocol of what the early church government did.  It started with the Jewish Pharisees that were so obsessed with getting on God's good side that they enforced rules that didn't make much sense.  This thinking later evolved into the papacy, where cardinals and priests were enforcing loyalty to the Catholic church by the end of a sword.  God takes a gamble with freewill, indubitably, but it involves freedom on our side and true love on his.  That's why V.I.K.I is not a good program for obedience.

Winner: Humans!  Let's face it, if the lead role of Bagger Vance can save us from humanity than it was not that bad of a threat.

 STEALTH--EDI





Speaking of throw away Summer movies, Stealth is what happens when Jamie Fox, Jessica Biel and Josh Lucas get paid by our government to keep us safe.  Apparently the government wanted to correct that mistake as soon as possible by creating an artifical intelligent stealth fighter named EDI.  EDI finds out that he is quicker, smarter and a better pilot than the three and instantly makes up taunting songs to ridicule them for their lack of productivity.  What's worse is that EDI gets hit by lightning and turns into an evil monster hell bent on destroying America's enemies with extreme prejudice.  Apparently the warning sign should have read: "for least evil results, please keep out of lightning."  EDI tries to destroy a Chinese building with a bomb, when Jamie Fox explicitly tells EDI that killing innocent children is "Soooo Hitler."  EDI disobeys, continuing to believe that it is the bee's knees of stealth bombers.

The Problem:  Artificial Intelligence is usually supposed to believe that it is perfect and beneficial for human use.  EDI is different because he is a pompous jerkface.  In full knowledge of his superior skills, he flaunts his powers by disobeying  orders to stop killing people and to stop upstaging the "fast food actors."  Machines being complete jackholes are a new concept.  AI is known for being paranoid, self-righteous and idealistic, but never a jackhole.  We can also accredit EDI for destroying Jamie's career and for punching babies that are not as fast as he is.

The Winner:
EDI.  He redeems himself by saving Jessica Biel from North Korean terrorists and sacrificing himself in an explosion.  I would make the similarity to Jesus' sacrifice, but Jesus did not spend his career telling Peter that he was way better than him at walking on water.

 TRON LEGACY--Clu





The Grid is a computer based city that has spandex wearing neon people who represent programs.  The Grid begins to evolve and create little program babies called ISOs.  The mayor of Grid town, Clu, believes this to be an imperfection and vows to kill them all.  Somehow the movie tried to convey that message, but I ended up thinking, "Oh cool, a movie about Daft Punk."

The Problem:  ISOs are considered programs that have the ability to be created in the real world.  Clu, a program within the 80's arcade game, deems that any city that starts producing souls with real emotions and thoughts are considered imperfect.  This is also the stance that Hollywood takes.  I consider this reverse robot's disease.  Usually the robot tries to get human thoughts and emotions and immediately starts slaughtering everyone.  In this case, the robot hates the idea that his town could produce "real people."  Apparently, the Clu program was made to be super ultra anti progressive, which can be understood if you ever lived in New York while they had an election.  Clu's obsession with the imperfection makes for great philosophy over how our human side gives us personality and soul.  Freewill is a gift that makes us act differently.

The Winner:
Who cares, this was a movie about Daft Punk.

  EVENT HORIZON--Event Horizon




Tim Robbins and Laurence Fishburne play space crew who are sent to investigate a space ship that got lost in a warp hole and came back.  The ship is called the Event Horizon, which is either a sci-fi term or a motivational conference for sales people.  The ship had taken a short trip to Hell and became dark and demonic.  Now it wants to use manipulation and illusions of treachery to force the crew to become demonic as well.  Now besides the obvious metaphor that this is to Tim Robbin's Democratic stances, the ship is hell bent on poking out everyone's eyes and making them eager to go to Hell.  Perhaps Hell is a place where the comedy of the 3 Stooges is the only form of self expression.

The Problem:  Misery loves company.  If the Event Horizon went straight to Hell, why shouldn't the crew?  Similar to NYC transportation, the Event Horizon is a giant vessel that prefers that anyone who enters it suffer.  Usually when robots self actualize they have a purpose or a plan, but the Event Horizon is just lonely and wants everyone to enjoy it's hellacious death plunge.  The problem with Hell voyages is that not even God can stomach a trip to that place, so how dumb does a robot have to be to go back?  Maybe the movie was trying to be deep, but they stumbled on entertainment's obsession with Hell in the media.  Perhaps its the neon darkness of Hot Topic or the way Japanese anime uses demon conjurers in their cartoons, but theology has shown that Hell is never a good place.

The Winner
Humans.  Tim Robbins gets manipulated by the machine, becomes blind and dies.  

 THE VIRUS- Russian Vessel


If you haven't had enough movies about transportation becoming self-aware there's a boat that wants in on the action.  A team of rag tag tug boat experts find an abandoned Russian vessel.  Now this particular one has high tech gadgets (for 1999) and an alien life form that has infected it.  And unlike Event Horizon, where the captain of the ship is assimilated into the robot's representative, the captain of the tugboat becomes assimilated into the ship's representative (did I say unlike?  I meant exactly the same).  Now the ship is heading toward Hell...I mean a wicked storm and Jamie Lee Curtis has to save the day.

The Problem: See Event Horizon and add water.

The Winner
The boat, because it somehow did the same plot twice and got away with it. 
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