Archive for May, 2009

GUMO #106 - Rapeduck

‘Rapeduck’ caused some contention in the house. I hope it’s been edited appropriately. It is also hilarious to hide around your housemate’s rooms. Try it out today!

ARCHIVES

GUMO #105 - Week of Warcraft

He didn’t look nearly as fat as I’ve been so mean as to show him here. However, he looks cute all fat and emo.

ARCHIVES

Pokémon Platinum Diary: Week 6

Dear Sirs,

No thank you, paperclip, I am quite adept at constructing communiqués without help.

I am pleased to report progress in my investigation. I have obtained the fifth gym badge of eight and my quest is reaching its end. Most of the Pokémon available for capture in this region have been seen by my Pokédex and I am confident of success in my mission.

On the subject of my Pokédex, I must again voice a concern of mine that has begun to unsettle me. Just the previous day I managed to capture a wild Skorupi that wandered across my path. All was well and normal until I examined the creature with the Pokédex. It was then I noticed how quiet everything had become.

I was surrounded by woodlands that were teeming with life. Wild creatures were roaming the woods, jumping between the trees, calling to each other, hunting food. Once my Pokédex was revealed, however, all the noise around me seemed to stop. It was deeply unsettling. I cannot understand quite what happened.

Slowly I turned off the Pokédex and put it back into my pocket. My nerves were on edge. So soon after the incident with the Pachirisu…! The sound had just died… vanished. I felt the eyes of the many hundreds of creatures upon me. It seems like madness, I know, but I felt them all observing me in that moment. Only the hissing of the wind through the branches was left. All the natural sounds had left the landscape.

Quickly I packed up my belongings and rushed off. As I left the woods, the sounds began to return. It was as if, for that moment, the creatures were all paying close attention to me.

I do not understand what is happening. I must press on to Canalave City. The sixth badge awaits. I must complete my mission… the sooner the better.

Gentlemen.

Heroes Volume 4 Review

Posted: May 23, 2009 in Review
Tags: , , , ,

Heroes Volume 4 Review

Heroes is a strange beast. It can be a loving show, one that rewards watching with occasional flushes of majesty. Sometimes it can bite the hands of its viewers with teeth made of hard-edged steel.

After the horribly patchy-but-turned-good-at-the-end Volume Two (‘Generations’) came the thoroughly magnificent third Volume, ‘Villains’. A thing of absolute beauty, it was television sci-fi writing at its very finest, with character arcs, plot twists, huge super-powered showdowns, great new characters, a story with a conclusion already planned in advance and the most impressive thing – not a single weak episode in all thirteen.

So what can the fourth Volume (‘Fugitives’) offer? Well, on the whole, a nasty trip down memory lane. For starters, the entire Volume is completely directionless, wandering from set-up to set-up without really ‘doing’ anything. Sylar spends the first half of the Volume wandering aimlessly as he tries to find his father, a far cry from the brilliant, hilarious and genuinely frightening villain he managed to become by the end of Volume Three. For the second half of the Volume, the writers seem to have decided that a mental breakdown would be an interesting thing to watch happen to a once great villain. Problem is, it’s not. And now that Sylar can shapeshift, he has been made completely indestructible.

Peter’s manufactured ability has changed from the flight we saw in the last episode to the new power of absorbing one ability at a time. Where this came from is anybody’s guess, but it means that he spends the whole Volume partnered up with useful people so he can actually do something.

Matt Parkman gets conveniently ‘gifted’ with the ability to paint the future, but this gets forgotten after about four episodes. He also gains a son – even though we were all told it wasn’t his.

Hiro and Ando struggle to even come across as comic foils. With Hiro powerless, what could have been a nice role-reversal for the only genuinely brilliant duo is instead forgotten as they bumble about not really doing anything. Ando’s manufactured power has also changed – where it once amplified other Heroes’ abilities, it now just shoots red lightening. Even when Hiro regains the ability to stop time, Ando never once suggests teaming up their powers. Surely the two are perfect? And now that Hiro’s body is slowly breaking down because of his over-reliance on his powers, isn’t it obvious that Ando is the perfect partner? But, no, such logic has no place on this show, it would be entertaining.

Claire goes back to being boring, even after the wonderful flirting with the dark side briefly seen in the last Volume. This time she’s given a four episode love interest (hint: it’s boring) and then spends time looking confused. Bennett fairs better, with a slightly more meaty story of deception and betrayal, but it’s never that interesting compared with the man we all know from past seasons.

Worst offender is new character Denko, a man born to hunt the Heroes. Across the whole Volume, he serves zero purpose. He might get to team up with Sylar in the final episodes, but given that the rest of the time he chases people around and gets more guns aimed at him than Jack Bauer, it’s not worth the wait.

There are some really great moments in this Volume that remind you why you bother sticking with creator Tim Kring through the ups and downs. Daphne’s death – her actual death – is incredible; a mixture of great writing, genuinely touching acting and good CGI. Likewise, the send-off given to Tracey is just as excellent, as she freezes everything around her to protect Micah. If the former glory of Heroes can be seen in these flashes, what was stopping it breaking through the whole time?

Even when the Volume limps to its damp squib finale, where Sylar plans to take the place of the President, the show continues to bite its viewers’ hands. A major character is finally killed, only to be resurrected minutes later in the laziest plot device twist ever. This was once a show that had the balls to sever all its connections to an entire season just because viewers didn’t like it. What’s going on now? We’re even cheated out of a proper climax, as the Amazing Flying Petrelli Brothers prepare to take on Sylar when, for the second time, a door is slammed, ensuring that the battle is unseen to lower costs. Thanks, Kring.

All in all, this is hands down the worst Volume of Heroes’ entire run. Kring and his boys need to figure out where they’re going with this, because after that weak cliffhanger (ANOTHER character is brought back from the dead, are you kidding me?!) the entire show looks to be dying. Let’s hope the magic returns soon.

2/5

GUMO #104 - The Wanker

I’m sorry I forgot to make him bald, Alex. I hope this isn’t a traumatic memory for you.

ARCHIVES

GUMO #103 - Another Day In Paradise

Hello world. I am trying to get a better job.

ARCHIVES

Pokémon Platinum Diary: Week 5

Dear Sirs,

I write – go away paperclip – to you with grave concerns regarding the Pokémon on the island of Sinnoh. Just the other night I discovered a Pachirisu scavenging inside my backpack. Given that the diet of these creatures consists of berries, I could not at first understand why I had woken up to see the familiar long white tail topped with three blue spikes poking out from the opening of my backpack.

I sat immediately upright to find out what was going on. The Pachirisu stared at me, its dead grey eyes locked onto mine. The moonlight glinted off its bucktoothed grin. A small static charge briefly lit up its yellow cheeks, almost a flush of anger. I even swear I heard it hiss at me – certainly something I have never heard a Pokémon to do.

As soon as I made to move towards the creature to scuttle it away, it gave off an even bigger electrical charge. This one, I could tell, was a severe warning. I was suddenly afraid. What could this white electric-powered squirrel do to the average man? Would I last long enough to cry for help?

I began to slide my hand very slowly under the pillow my head had been resting on just moments earlier. If I could reach one of the Pokéballs hidden beneath the pillow, maybe I could scare the creature off.

It was as if the Pachirisu knew what I was thinking. It gave a short, barking laugh, twisted with cruelty. Just off to my left, a bush suddenly shook as if a Pokémon had left it very suddenly. It distracted me from the creature ransacking my belongings, for, when I looked back, the Pachirisu was gone.

This would not be so unusual, gentlemen, but the Pachirisu in question was already captured, I am sure of it, which leads me to the disturbing realisation that the Pokémon can escape from their Pokéballs at will.

I have spent the past few days thinking on this difficult and disturbing thought – what if the Pokémon are not our friends? I have been sent to Sinnoh to investigate the region’s claims of legendary Pokémon, but what if the Pokémon do not what to be investigated?

Sinnoh – and many other islands in this area of the Pacific, for that matter – has its entire economy founded on the backs of Pokémon. The creatures are used for fishing, farming, competitions, delivering mail, quick travel and many other things. If this were to collapse… I shudder at the thought, gentlemen.

I apologise for the negative tones of this letter. I shall continue on with my investigation. I am sure there is nothing to worry about.

Until the next time I am able to communicate, gentlemen.