What’s up, my two favorite buttknuckles? I haven’t emailed you guys since last year, so I figured I’d be remiss for not befouling your otherwise pristine podcast with my inanities to ring in 2017. I hope you strapping young lads had a great New Year’s Eve! My old self fell into bed promptly at 8:30 pm due to my daughter’s new anarchic schedule in which she wakes up every 2-3 hours every single night. I’m not sure why she fell out of her formerly solid sleeping schedule, but now she is Hell bent and glory bound to prevent her mother and I from functioning fully in society. Staying up to watch the ball drop was just not a thing that was going to happen, and I really don’t feel like I missed a thing, but maybe that’s the old codger in me coming to the fore in that regard.
I have yet to hear your take on Rogue One, as I’ve not listened to the most recent 283 installment episode of the show. FYI, your internet SUCKS. So since I’ve not heard your take, I’ll give you mine. In short, it was so much better than The Force Awakens. Don’t get me wrong, guys, TFA was a good movie, but we all know and acknowledge that it was a grand recycling of episode 4. Rogue One can at least stand on its own two legs with little comparison to other Star Wars films. It is hands down the most visceral SW film to date, and it really did emphasize the war part of Star Wars. I know some people were moaning about the lack of Jedi and lightsabers, but I feel that is a shortsighted perspective given that, in the grand scope of that universe, there was a lot more going on than just Force users going at it. While the audience at the screening I saw were geeked to see Vader again, I honestly felt his presence lent very little to the film, and something about his look just seemed off to me. For instance, the way his helmet seated onto the rest of his suit looked cheap. It looked like some rubber sitting on top of some black vinyl. His voice, (and Heaven knows I was glad James Earl Jones chose to voice the Sith Lord once again) was more James Earl than Vader. I think more could have been done in audio post production to clean it up a bit. I know my kvetching about Vader is making it seem like I am more negative about the film than I am, but there were just some minor things, mostly Vader related, that seemed disjointed. It was like “Hey guys, here’s a new Star Wars film, and oh yeah get ready for Darth Vader even though he serves no significant purpose in the film other than to remind you that he’s still Darth Vader.” Then they had to have Vader make a wise ass remark about not choking on one’s ambitions as he was choking someone. To me that felt a lot like Optimus Prime’s “My bad” moment. Vader does not make jokes. Grand Moff Tarkin, on the other hand, served a somewhat important role, but the CG work on bringing the likeness of Peter Cushing back to the big screen was more weird than believable. I know technology has come a long way, but there was something about the unnatural way his skin and eyes seemed to shimmer that gave the character an unhealthy dose of Uncanny Valley syndrome, ya know? Still, the overall story was solid, and FREAKING IP MAN was in the film. Star Wars and Ip Man in the same film? I geeksploded. I found the ending super fitting, though it pissed my son off. Chase was all “The whole movie ends and everyone dies?!” I chuckled and told him that was the sort of ending that made Empire the best film in the series, and reminded him that in episode 4 Mon Mothma did emphasize that great sacrifices were made to acquire the intel.
Moving on, how did Christmas treat you? Was Santa super nice to both of you? Meredith gave me some very thoughtful gifts, but none of them were an Xbox One. She made good on her promise to get me nothing major. lol I ended up buying her some diamond earrings, only to find I’d already bought her the same ones 2 or 3 years ago, which she was wearing as she opened the new ones. Only I could find a way to buy the same jewelry twice. She had a good laugh at my expense. I took the suckers back the next day. If I hadn’t bought myself a copy of Mafia 3, I’d have gotten no games for Christmas. Speaking of, it is a REALLY good game and a more than worthy entry into that already stellar series. If I had to voice a gripe about it, the travel inbetween missions is a little mind numbing. But, the main protagonist is compelling, and the narrative pulls you in and makes you care. Well, it makes me care. I don’t know what effect it would have on Rhetty Poo. It’s just as well there was no Xbone for me, because I’ve been too busy to get much gaming in what with our store’s preparations for moving into a new building at month’s end and having to spend more time cleaning the house. Since Mer has been knocked up, her energy has dipped and I have to spend more time on household chores, otherwise we’d live a life reminiscent of the show Hoarders.
When I have had down time, I’ve been watching some shows. I finished season 2 of The Man in the High Castle, which was as amazing as I’d hoped, even if the whole alternate universe thing with the Japanese Trade Minister got a little convoluted. Since then, I’ve been sawing away at Designated Survivor, whose trailer looked promising, and the series has more than delivered a solid entertainment experience thus far. With Kiefer Sutherland in the lead, I was worried the show was going to be little more than President Jack Bauer, but he really has served up an entirely different persona than that in his 24 fame.
Man…I feel like I had more to discuss, but I suppose I don’t. Oh wait…yeah…I finally caved and bought myself a Sega Genesis. That was my other Christmas present to myself. Now I can actually play the sixty some odd Genesis carts I’ve had in my collection for some time. I was gonna hold off a little while longer, but my local shop got in a model 1 Genesis (the wider one with the headphone jack) and I pulled the trigger on it since I rarely ever see those in the wild anymore. Their price is finally starting to rise, so I figured if I waited much longer I would end up paying even more for one. Nintendo’s retro hardware and games have gotten prohibitively expensive for many retro collectors, so a lot of them are now starting to flock to Sega since it’s still a fair bit more approachable in terms of price and availability.
I meant to ask you, Rhett, if you ever got a NES Classic. If so, what are your thoughts? And with that, I’ll sit back and await your responses to my incoherent verbal diarrhea. Much love, and Happy New Year guys!