Tuesday, March 27, 2012

An apology to Anonymous (Updated)

Don’t adjust your monitor, I was NOT hacked, this is really me, please read.

So a fan of mine on YouTube felt in his gut that something was wrong. He knew about the hate page against me and that I had been told Lulzsec and Anonymous were behind it.

He patched a call through to “a friend”. I do not know of any screen names, so I can’t tell you who said what. Now this “friend” knows somebody who is an Anon hacker.

The friend explained the situation and patched the information and links through to the hacker.

The hacker said “OMG THOSE retards AGAIN???”

Apparently Anonymous has a group of wannabe fanboys. These people post hate pages on Encyclopedia Dramatica and have hacked in their name. These fanboys are not bright enough to actually be a part of the real hacker groups, so they act out. Picture the villain in the Incredibles movie.

Yeah. Watch the movie, you’ll see what just happened here.

While Anonymous and Lulzsec go after banks, big business and the government, these fanboys go after random people. There’s a rumor that these fanboys are the real idiots who hacked PBS Kids and Sesame Street’s websites last year.

With that said, the hate page about me is being run by posers, and not even smart posers at that. This likely goes double for the idiots who hacked my Facebook more than once, and made a fake account in my name, posting Gay porn photos.

Anonymous had no real hate for me. Not once.

So I would like to offer a sincere apology.

Starting right now, any post I had made about the groups will be corrected or deleted. It’s no trouble for me at all for me to say I was wrong and to correct the information I posted.

By the time you read this I will be halfway though correcting everything I posted, so things should be evened out in a few days. My Blogger has already been corrected to reflect this new information.

Having been through this myself, I can say it’s no fun when someone poses as you online, and even though we have differing ideas on how to handle the Government, (I vote selectively, they hack) it’s not fair for me to accuse this bunch of something a poser did.

Once more, I would like to apologize for the whole series of events. The comment section below this post is open to anybody who would like to speak their mind on this and I will approve as much as I can.

Tea?

UPDATE: Well apparently correcting my posts didn't take that long after all. Topaz Videos, YouTube and each of my blogs are now updated with correct information. Again, I apologize for the accusations. Like I said before, having been through it too, it's not fun to have people posing as you.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Yandere

A few months ago, a friend sent me a YouTube video of an anime I had never seen before. I don’t remember the title, but the animation was exquisite. It really made me want to draw better just seeing this. The play of light was lifelike, the scenery was well painted, not even a stitch of CGI to be seen.

And the colors. The colors were vibrant and intense. So vivid and perfect, you could tell that the studio that made this put their soul into it. Just marvelous.

… And then there was a story.

Now again, I don’t remember the anime, so I’m going to re-name the cast. I’m sure these names are not even in the same hemisphere as the actual names of the characters, this is just so I can tell the story here.

So there are two friends, one is Agatha and the other is Yuri. Both are in their early teens, but Yuri looks and acts like a 6 year old. Agatha dresses her age and has long, green hair while Yuri has brown pigtails that stop high above her immensely large head and a stereotypically GIRL outfit, frilly, bows, candy hearts, just supremely girly.

There’s a boy in this anime. Let’s call him Takato. Now Takato has no actual personality, he’s just here for the sake of eye candy.

Now Agatha and Yumi know this third girl, Tomoyo. Tomoyo looks almost as adorable as Yuri, but is wearing a long white shirt and pants. She too has green hair.

Tomoyo likes Takato, but he doesn’t notice her. In fact, he doesn’t notice anything. Tomoyo sees Yuri talking to him, and freaks the hell out, thinking that Takato is going to ask Yuri out on a date.

Now up until this point, this looks like a funny, cute, baby anime. Everyone has abnormally large, gem like eyes (yes, even for an anime) and the colors are all candy like. There’s even a catchy J-Pop tune in the background, and everything has bubbles and flowers on it.

Tomoyo leads Yuri away to a bright purple cave. There’s even cute little animals surrounding the cave, and Yuri is asking Tomoyo about a CD she wanted to share.

Suddenly, Yuri is bound to a rock and crying. Tomoyo screams something unintelligible, and pulls out a hatchet. Yuri blushes heavily, and says “It’s alright. I love you and I forgive you.” Yuri is then hacked to death by Tomoyo. WHAT THE FUCK??

There is blood everywhere, this may be one of the goriest things I’ve ever seen, and that’s scary considering that I’ve watched Sam Rami movies and Akira. Tomoyo is being splashed with Yuri’s life blood and laughing.

Suddenly, she stops hacking, grabs her head and screams. She is suddenly sad that Yuri is no longer alive.

As she’s trying to clean Yuri up, Agatha races to Tomoyo and screams. Apparently Yuri was never a threat to what Tomoyo wanted with Takato… because Yuri was Takato’s baby sister.

O_O

It was 9 a.m. before I finally went to bed.

Now had this had been one of those Akira drawn type, shock value anime titles, I wouldn’t care. But this was drawn like Magical Do Re Mi. Yeah. Imagine one of those kids with a hatchet blade. Not so cute now, is she??

Now the term Yandere used to be a slur that means “bi-polar” which is why I’m not comfortable using it. It’s like the N word or the term “retard”. You really shouldn’t throw this word around like that.

But Yandere is now a genre of anime, and it’s fan base is HUGE with people of all ages latching onto it. It actually can transcend all types of programming real easy, and Yandere characters are some of the most popular around.

A good example of Yandere is this:

Yeah, scary as shit right??

Now Yandere characters are nothing new, but there used to be more substance to them.

Used to be, a Yandere character was either an evil master mind, or the possessor of a great power that is just starting to manifest. (Imagine in the X-Men series if there was a new mutant who just now hit puberty. Yeah, like that.)

A good example of how Yandere used to be handled in anime is Sailormoon S character, Hotaru Tomoe:

Hotaru was an early example of Yandere. One minute she was a quiet, shy girl who keeps to herself. The next? She’s blasting people left and right and trying to steal her best friend’s heart, straight beating from her chest.

But Hotaru’s personality disorder had a valid excuse. She was technically three people in one:
Sailor Saturn: Forbidden Senshi of destruction on the verge of re-awakening.
Mistress 9: Mistress of Master Pharaoh 90, evolved Daimon, hell bent on destroying the world and harnessing the power of heart crystals and the Holy Grail.
Hotaru Tomoe: Innocent Goth 12 year old, whose possessed father was surgically speeding her through puberty in their basement.

See it all makes sense, and eventually this did all work itself out. The part of her that was Mistress 9 was killed by Hotaru’s good soul, Saturn and Hotaru died separately, and then the two were re-joined and reborn right on the field of battle, adopted by Sailor Pluto, and teenaged lesbian common-laws Sailors Neptune and Uranus and then raised to be a good Sailor Senshi and sent to a nice school. (… what?)

Until 2000, Yandere characters had super powers and a valid explanation for their behavior, and always there was either a cure or work-around that would later help the character live a long and happy life. Most of the time they were hidden super heroes, like in the case of Hotaru.

Now? Not so much. A Yandere usually has no powers, no actual reason is given for their behavior, and now they’re in children’s anime.

This morning I woke up to an episode of Beyblade, which I was unaware is still producing new episodes. There was a flashback scene after character Masamune meets up with a friend in a wheelchair. (I don’t actually follow the series, so I Wiki’ed his name.)

In the flashback scene, Masamune is shown as a little kid, pretty much being shat upon by total strangers, playing with the Beyblade tops and their accessories. (Product placement? Nooo. Perish the thought!) So lil’ squirt goes into a center where they’re playing the game.

Tons of kids are in a room, joking, laughing and having a good time playing.

Seeing the game, Masamune asks if he can play too.

Suddenly, all of these kids gang up on him, shaking him and threatening his life. “WHAT THE HECK IS YOUR PROBLEM? WE DON’T WANT YOUR KIND AROUND, GET LOST!!” Wow, total Yandere scene, even the music changed.

Then an extremely mannish child (seriously, have the animators ever even SEEN a tween before?!) challenges him. Masamune wins, and suddenly the kids who threatened to punch his face in want to be his best friends.

……. WHAT??

It’s one thing to tell a poignant tale, but this has gotten out of control.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Do’s and Don’t-Even-Think-It’s in Comic, Cartoon and Video Game Movies and TV

To be fair, I had warning from people who were actual DC comic fans. People who read Green Lantern long before Hollywood decided it was the in thing to do. I had been told that the film had made little effort to stick with the original, Pre-52, Pre-Crisis, Pre-Let’s-Let-Tim-Burton-Direct-Batman era of the Green Lantern, and I was told that unless I like seeing Ben 10 CGI’s in 3-D, DO NOT see this film. So I have nobody to blame but myself. I wound up watching the film twice on HBO. Once because I had missed a good 30 minutes, and again to make 100% sure I had seen what I did.

That was a mistake. Granted, not a Catwoman sized mistake, but certainly not one of my best decisions.

While the film tries very hard to endear the audience to the film’s title super hero with moderate humor, I can’t look past how little they actually got right. And the CGI was out of control. Gone was the light from the Green Lantern’s ring, replaced with a Nickelodeon CGI slime. The suits had their own tendons and the script felt like it wanted to be nine movies at once ~ with only two of the 9 scripts having anything to do with the DC universe.

Tired I am of the fake excuse some fanboys make, that the studios are always right and have the right to damage a franchise as they so choose, because they paid for it, or the other excuse that I should just take an incorrect movie at entertainment value.

Wrong. Very wrong.

When you buy the rights to the film, you have an obligation to make said film as accurate as possible. Otherwise you deserve whatever abysmal DVD sales await you, and the permanent shame and degradation that goes with your failed concept. Even if the movie grosses well, the fact that it’s future will reside on a 2 am Telemundo broadcast should be testament to the failure you have dealt us all.

But what good does it do me to sit here and complain about these films, when I can just as easily provide you with a few tips on the next film endeavor? So dear future film makers, here’s a list of Do’s and Don’ts for your next Comic Book, Cartoon or Video Game film:

DO: Cast unknowns. The first X-Men movies got lucky, casting Patrick Stewart as Professor Xavier. There is a gifted few in Hollywood that can match a comic book character, and fewer still as good at acting as Stewart. But the world isn’t filled with Patrick Stewarts, and Halle Berry is as far from being either Storm or Catwoman as I am from playing Big Barda. So instead of wasting countless millions on pre-established stars, save the studio a pretty penny and do this:

Hold a comic book convention audition. Challenge wannabe actors to make the most accurate costume they can, and do their best impersonation of each hero and villain you’re casting. Contrary to popular fiction, there’s an even number of athletically built men and women who follow comics, and most comic fans are so die hard in their fandom, that they will even strive to get the thread-count right in the costume. Acting classes for these people will still be less expensive and time consuming then trying to force Hugh Jackman to hunch over a few inches to play Wolverine.

DON’T EVER: Make a re-envisioning, reboot or “retcon” a story.

If you want to tell a story outside of your franchise’s continuity, do it on a Fanfiction forum. Keep your fanboy daydreams OUT of the movies or television. Here’s a short list of movie and TV blunders made by Hollywood, to remind you why this is a bad idea:

There are NO “alien” Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. They were born and raised in New York.

Goku was not a 16 year old when he met Bulma/Buruma. He was 12 and he never went to a traditional high school.

Bugs Bunny has never seen a Dalek.

Batman does not drive a tank.

Bowser and the Koopa Troopas are not dinosaurs. They are turtle-like creatures. Similarly a Goomba is a walking mushroom.

Underdog lived by himself, walked upright and was not a pet of a lonely young boy with Daddy issues.

Kitana never stayed with Batman the way Robin did. Likewise, Alfred does not ride in the Batmobile with a pistol.

Josie and the Pussycats never went to outer space. If they did, they would have left Alexandra on the first God-forsaken, airless, misogynistic planet they could find.

Lara Croft does not have blue eyes.

The only time a retcon is acceptable is when it’s established as an alternate universe.

Example: the Star Trek reboot is established mid-movie as an alternate universe, when Kirk meets the original Spock, and Spock explains that he was pulled through a rip through time and space, and was pulled out of the original Star Trek universe and into this one. Anybody with a Kindergarten education can follow such a simple story.

DO: Stick to the continuity.

Nothing pleases a movie goer more than a totally accurate film, and nothing quite pleases a couch potato more than seeing a TV show, written by someone who paid attention.

If this is a Video Game movie/show: Play the ENTIRE GAME. Take notes and pictures while you play. Take down the script and stick to it.

If this is a cartoon/anime adaptation, rent the DVDs and watch them. Every episode. Take notes on the characters, the personalities, the story. Stick to it.

If this is a comic/manga adaptation, go to your local comic shop, buy up at least one story arc (ask the clerk for help if you’re new at this) then take your comics to a Kinko’s. Have each page blown up, and take the blown up copies to your staff. Now you have a storyboard and script, from which you can make your movie.

DON’T EVER: Add characters that do not exist in the series.

The 1960’s Batman series suffered, when nosey, idiotic Aunt Harriet suddenly stuck her behind into Dick and Bruce’s lives. Similar nosey, semi-authority figures such as dumb bosses, teachers and other assorted busy-bodies only serve to water down the plot, drag the story out far past where it should, and undermine the stars.

Downtrodden, “Let’s live in the REAL world ~ and while we’re at it, the world SUCKS” characters like the granddaughter in the Hey Albert movie, Jenna Elfman’s role in Looney Tunes Back in Action, or Piper Perabo ’s character in the Rocky and Bullwinkle film, also bog down would-be comedies. Every time one of these characters opens their mouths, the comedy gets sucked right out of the film, and we’re left with so-called “life lessons” that strip the rest of the cast not only if their joy, but their character as well. By the time these angst-ridden characters finally learn the moral of the film, and learn to accept the cast for the goofy yet lovable characters they are, it’s too late. Someone is dying, someone is hurt, and the credits are about to roll. Film is ruined and what could have been a blockbuster is now heading for the $5 bin at Wal*Mart.

Seedy executive types like the villain in the CGI Chipmunks movie are best left in the 80’s. They only serve to annoy and drive away customers of your franchise.

Furthermore, add-in child characters added as much “fresh” appeal as a rotting banana. Take a lesson from the many incarnations of Scooby Doo, which lost ratings each time a new, youthful character was added. (Scrappy Doo anybody?)

DO: Open your mind when it comes to the youth.

Not every character needs to be an agnsty teenager. And not every kid is a troublemaker with a sad past. These stories have been over-told and are not charming.

Astro Boy for example was a brave, sensitive robot child, no older than 7. He was never a deep voiced, CGI teenager on the verge of his first love, nor did he ever hang around teens with trust issues. He did however wind up in later seasons with robot parents and a robot little sister, and Astro Boy fought hard to bridge the gap between robots and humans.

In the original Dragonball anime and manga, 12 year old Goku and 13 year old Kuririn/Krillin were homeschooled by Muten/Master Roshi. Neither one grew up to be “stupid” or “friendless”. In fact, by the time the series wraps up, the two boys have more face to face, met in real life friends from all walks of life than they ever dreamed possible.

Not once did they ever set foot in a traditional school, and yet they had the same cast of friends anybody else would have. This should be kept in film. Which reminds me…

DON’T EVER: Send a character to school if he/she NEVER went.

I can understand if you’re making a live action movie, based on Fruits Basket or a cartoon movie about Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, since those characters are all teenagers in school.

But for the love of humanity enough with the school films and TV! Please leave High School Musical to Disney.

Iron Man was NOT a freshman in High School when he received the armor, nor was Jean Grey a middle school tween when he met her. Nightcrawler was never a dorky, 16 year old exchange student at Professor X’s institute, anymore than Goku was a moody sophomore at B.S. High.

Making the main character a student does NOT endear him/her to the audience. If anything it makes people want to avoid your film or show twice as much. So please, cut it out.

DO: Know when to quit.

One Superman movie was enough. Two was a passible surprise. But 6 was too many, especially when the last movie erased any notion of this being a Superman movie by completely going against what little continuity was left and adding characters that serve to annoy almost as much as the evil-bitch-retcon of Lois Lane.

If you feel a movie might do really well, set a Trilogy limit for the movies. Once movie 3 is out, STOP. Walk away and work on another project. Never go back.

Also, have it written in your will that the world is forbidden to re-make what you have made. You can spare us all of crappy re-hashes the next time Hollywood runs out of ideas.

DON’T EVER: Over-explain.

Odds are good that the viewer is smart enough to understand when the villain blows up a car or when a chipmunk can talk. We don’t need a narrative from a character, trying to understand such a simple, fantasy concept. Remember Dave, this isn’t National Geographic, you’re in a Chipmunks movie.

DO: Go easy on the special effects.

CGI’s can add a subtle, awe worthy effect to any film ~ when done in moderation. But when it gets to the point where the movie looks like the 30th Dreamworks re-hash, it’s time to stop. The same goes for 3-D, the novelty wears off too quickly with movie goers. Keep the effects simple and the crowd will follow.

DON’T EVER: Add drama where it doesn’t belong.

Marvel deals with enough social issues in each comic, that we don’t need to stop the Fantastic Four movie so that Sue and Reed can discuss whether or not they should break up the team in the event that Sue gets pregnant, anymore than we needed to stop 15 different episodes of Warner Brothers’ X-Men Teen spin-off, so we could deal with Kitty Pryde’s ever confusing hormones or the X-Men movie’s issue with Rouge’s inability to be close to another person, physically.

DC’s Teen Titans is riddled with an over abundance of drama to the point that extra social issues are not required. Starfire has enough going on with the return of Blackfire, her wicked older sister who sold her into sex slavery at age 12, that she doesn’t need the additional drama of Robin and Cyborg fighting. Beast Boy has enough problems with his emotions over Terra, without Raven adding her Daddy issues and emotional problems to the mix.

Keeping a tight grip on a story’s continuity can mean the difference between a flop and a lifetime achievement award. All you need is accuracy.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

All I wanted to do was film the birds.

All I wanted to do was film the birds.

One of my many hobbies is filming the wildlife in my backyard. You may have seen a video or two of this on YouTube, where I occasionally post these videos to classical music.

I don’t know why, but no matter where I live, my yard has been full of animals. This year, we have two new species of birds back there, and I’m guessing a Chickadee hybrid. (There are two Chickadees with unusually red wings.) We have red and grey squirrels, one hybrid and a squirrel born with no tail. There are Doves, Robins, Sparrows and a few stray cats and dogs, and I just wanted to film these creatures. The weather was summertime hot, unusual for March, but there weren’t too many clouds and there was a nice breeze, so I figured this was a good chance to film the birds.

My desires in life are so simple, that some classify them as boring. I don’t think I’m asking for too much to be able to film animals in my backyard with my camera.

WELL apparently I am.

There are 10 year olds on my street that think it’s funny to high-five my fence. Why? I have no idea, but I wish they would stop, and get a normal hobby. When I was 10, I was catching Pokemon, collecting trading cards and playing Mario. I knew better than to mess with other peoples’ property, and I didn’t lean on trees, blabbing about whose ass was nicer or who should be porked. (Seriously, these are KIDS?!?!) It makes me want to hit their parents, just hearing what comes out of their faces.

But the kids are not the main issue today. Oh no.

I have a new neighbor, who is a HUGE Jersey Shore fan. I want you to picture Snooki, but 5’4, sans cheetah print, in a black spandex leotard, with a slightly less Jersey accent. And she has a BFF, who looks like your standard trailer park trash, Daisy Dukes included.

Now they were hanging out with a male neighbor of mine, who just wanted to play basketball. I wouldn’t care, but these two women kept SCREECHING about the damn basketball hoop, scaring the birds.

Snookette: Like OMG how do you work this thing?
Male: It’s a basketball hoop.
Snookette: I can see that but ohmaygawd it’s so haaaarrrrrd! Like how do you work it?
Male: Okay *SIGH* for the hundredth time, here’s what you do. (Dribbles ball, puts through hoop.)
Snookette: EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE OHMAYGAWD you’re doing it WRONG!! You’re so fast I can’t learn THAT!!
Trailer Trash: Leik it’s okay! I have a friend on the Pha-oooone, and she’s looking it up on Wikipedia.

Now while her voice doesn’t come up well on camera, I do now have film footage of one of the squirrels listening to her speak. I now have a video of myself yelling at the squirrel not to jump in the pool. Apparently he had lost the will to live and was dangling his head over the water.

Now imagine Emo Stone Cold Steve Austin. Now imagine if he had a stupid looking medallion tattooed on his left shoulder. This is my racist neighbor that came out after them, wanting to know what “my kind” is doing outside. Funny thing though, I mind the racist Emo skin head a TON less than I do the cast of Generic Shore.

I just uploaded the videos I took. They are spastic as hell, and I don’t think I can edit them properly, without a ton of jump cuts, plus I’d have to dub out the sound of the male blaring his mix-tape of All American Rejects.

All I wanted to do was film the birds.