Thursday, November 30, 2017

Thor: Ragnarok

We finally saw Thor: Ragnarok and I liked the movie, overall. I like the humor in it, the use of Led Zeppelin (both times), and the action. What I don't like, however, is how they messed with the cosmology of the Norse Gods. Let me enumerate my issues, and I'll stick with the Marvel Comics version rather than get into the Lore.

Here there be spoilers.

First of all, we have Hela. While I think Cate Blanchett did an absolutely outstanding job, I have a real problem with her parentage. Hela is the daughter of Loki, and the byplay between the two is really good, in the comics. Here, though, she's the unknown older sister of Thor. Sorry, but that doesn't work. She can still be the villain of the piece, but get her father right. In fact, it would make it even better if Thor kept suspecting Loki of betraying him to his daughter rather than just from being a schemer.

Secondly, Ragnarok is often referred to as the Twilight of the Gods, because most of the Norse Gods are to be killed in that. Surtur, however, is supposed to set all of creation on fire after bathing his sword in the eternal flame. I'll forgive the changing from sword to crown, but releasing him just to burn Asgard? Nope. He'd keep going and burn EVERYTHING!

Third, Thor's exclamations. Why the heck is the God of Thunder saying, "Oh my god"? What, "Odin's Beard" isn't good enough for you? And just which "god" is his, anyway? If not Odin, then Bor? Maybe Buri? That just threw me right out of the movie.

Finally, Odin's death is to be at the hands (jaws) of the Fenris Wolf. The wolf and Odin are in the same movie, and Odin dies, but the wolf doesn't kill him? Nope. Sorry. Odin just spreading himself on the wind like Apollo (yes, that's a Star Trek reference) is just way too simple. It's a MacGuffin, pure and simple, to get the villain out and about. They could have released Hela because Odin wasn't in Asgard to re-up some spell to keep her in Hel. Then she comes to Earth, with Fenris (who is her brother, BTW), and the wolf chows down on Odin. Much more poignant, in my opinion.

So, I don't dislike the movie, but there's just too much that they got wrong, even just from the comics, for me to say it's great. Maybe I'll like it better on a re-watch, but right now it's strictly middle of the road.

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Thursday, November 23, 2017


No matter when you celebrate or who you're with, I hope that everyone has a lot to be thankful for this year. I know I do.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a parade to watch. :)

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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Time Travel Stories

Out of all of the possible variations of stories out there, there's one that I am really not a fan of, and that's Time Travel. The main reason for this is that I really only like one kind of time travel, that of predestination. The idea that you travel through time and everything that happens does so because it has already happened, so nothing actually changes.  That's a very hard thing to do and, from what I've seen, there aren't many that get it right.

Two of the shining examples of stories that got it are the movie "The Final Countdown" and the novel "The Anubis Gates". Both of these take you through a series of events that lead you, the viewer, to believe that history can, and will, be changed. However, what happens is that history unfolds exactly as it was meant to.

Don't get me wrong, I find "Back to the Future" and things like it to be quite entertaining, but they aren't my preferred type of story where time travel is involved. Changing the past is always a fun thing to play around with, but are you really changing something in your timeline, or just creating an alternate timeline? If it's not a comedy premise, this type of time travel could be a big problem.

Like I said, though, the predestination type seems to be pretty hard to pull off. Mainly because you have to had thought the entire plot out backwards and forwards, making sure that all of your bases are covered. That's probably why you don't see many of this type out there.

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Thursday, November 9, 2017

A Little Bit of Self Indulgence

Yozora, Kodaka, and Sena
Please excuse this bit of an exercise, but I've got to get something out of my system. I recently finished watching the Anime "Haganai", which has two seasons and ends on a cliffhanger. The last episode came out in 2013, so the cliffhanger has not been resolved, even though the light novels on which it is based has continued.

This is going to be a writing exercise for me to work out what I think would have been a better ending, even keeping a cliffhanger, but not one so frustrating. Since this includes spoilers for the anime, I'm going to put in a jump break. If you want to read on and haven't seen the anime, you have been warned.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Spooky Bats & Scaredy Cats

Yes, I know that Halloween was 2 days ago, but I didn't want to sit on this for another year. I saw this when it first came out and since it's claymation, I wanted to see it again the next year. However, I didn't remember the name of it, so I could never find it. Luckily I managed to uncover the video this year, and I wanted to share it with all of you.

Let me know what you think about it. I seem to be biased towards pretty much anything claymation, but I think this is a cute concept.

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