Critical Examination: Flower

FlowerYou all are about to think that I am such a hipster, because I am about to critically examine a game where you play as the wind and collect flower petals to help you with objectives.  That sounds so simple, and when you say it out loud, kind of dumb.  But there is a lot of subtext in this game, which only my unbelievably-strange and overly-analytical examination might help you all to see.  But don’t think that this is something where you can’t contribute.  For real, if you have your own take, let me know.  I love some good gaming conversation.  Though, if you just want to call me a pretentious hipster faggot, I won’t stop you.  I get that there is something to be said for that argument.  Stick with me, though, and you might see where I’m coming from.

Part One: The Lonely Apartment

Let’s all be willing to admit that there has been a point in our lives where we are somewhere that we don’t want to be.  How many of you reading this have a flat or an apartment in a part of town that we don’t want to be, and the place isn’t that great either.  My first apartment was in the worst part of town, with mold growing somewhere in my bathroom.  It was constantly giving me stomach aches. I could smell it, and I knew it was there, but had no idea where.  I have a feeling that it was behind the shower.  It would explain why my ex and I got so sick the first week we lived there.  That wasn’t fun.  However, all of us have been in a place in our lives that we didn’t want to be, and had to accept it because we either don’t have the money or don’t have the opportunity to go further.

When you first enter Flower, you are in the main character’s apartment. The main character isn’t the wind, as so many think.  It is a nameless person, man or woman, who is in an apartment that they don’t want to be.  It’s grungy, and you can hear a loud computer monitor in the background.  This is not a nice place.  And that, in turn, opens up the world of the wind.  See, those worlds are connected to the protagonist’s mind.  They are daydreams or fantasies.  As you go through each level, and return to that apartment, you begin to notice things.  At the end of the first level, the place has been cleaned up a fair bit, but is still very drab.  That ties in to the next level.  At the end of that, the apartment now has color and looks pretty nice.  However, there is that closed window, like the outside world doesn’t really exist.  Which ties in to the next level.  When you arrive at the apartment again, night has fallen.

The end of the night has you coming back to a rain storm.  Given that each level is showing off the character’s frame of mine, this is when they are at their lowest.  The worlds of their fantasy reflect that, but I’ll get to that when I do.  The end of the storm level is symbolic for more reasons than one.  At the end of it, you have the sun shining through.  The protagonist is finally ready, to accept their life, and move forward.  You get through the last level, and you see the apartment and the rest of the world.  There is sunshine, color, a nice breeze, and everything appears right.  After going through the whole game, this person in this lonely apartment has come to terms with life, and is ready to move forward.  The credits level is a reflection of this.  It’s telling that, instead of it being accessed through a flower, it is through a picture.  All of it is a reflection on life and how far this person has come.  But it also goes back to memory.  That picture is a memory of where they started.  Now, they have come full circle.

Whenever we go to a place where we don’t want to be, not all of us realize that it can be as good or as bad as we make it.  That’s something that I had to figure out.  I got here, and I saw this place.  It’s white and colorless.  But I have found ways of making it my own.  I have a painting that my grandmother left me.  It was the only thing she owned that was to go to a specific person.  Part of me feels weird about that.  Like it is somehow disrespectful.  But I digress.  I also got this really pretty glitter lamp.  With these things, I have helped to make this place my own.  The main character in Flower was in much the same place.  They were somewhere that they didn’t want to be, but through each adventure through their mind, we see that they have been working as well.  Not just to improve their own life, but the life of their community.  By the end of the game, you hear life in the street, and music..  It’s a community that was helped to come alive, with hints that this is something that you have been a part of.  Both you and this protagonist have helped their world in some small way.  But that small way makes a world of difference.  It’s the thing that makes communities grow.

Something that people in the 21st century are seeming to forget is the community bonds.  I’ll give the San Fransisco hipsters one thing – they do have a lot of community.  These people go out and do things to improve the lives of the communities they live in.  That’s not to say that other places don’t have that.  I have heard and read stories about poor communities coming together to improve things.  Goes to show that while there isn’t a lot of hope for humanity, it’s there all the same.  But what about the fantasy?  What about the realms of the protagonist’s mind?  Well, let’s talk about those.

Part Two: The Wind

As I said, each level is a journey into the protagonist’s mind.  And each level has some symbolism to where their mind is.  The first level is, in my opinion, in the most beautiful.  Maybe that’s just because I love nature so much.  However, there is also the amount of detail in this level.  Anyway, that first level is very specific.  The way it’s presented, this place is a memory.  Perhaps of somewhere that the protagonist grew up.  They don’t like the world that they are in, so in their mind they go to a better one.  A world of light and fresh air and freedom.  Despite the limited nature of the game’s design, the way you see that world of grass go on forever, it feels free.  That’s where the main character wants to be.  They want to be free.  They imagine roaming those hills, and the level ends at the base of a giant tree.  That’s important.  Was this tree significant?  A symbol of something being planted?  That could go anywhere.  So let’s end with saying that it is important, even is we may never know why.

The next level is still very much filled with nature.  However, this is something else.  It is a colorless world.  Given that in the real world, things are very colorless as well, the fantasy realm no longer reflects just what the character is imagining.  Now it is affected by the world.  You go through the level, and with each objective you accomplish, you notice that color starts to come into the world.  From the grass and flowers, to the rocks and even the sky.  The color seeps into every part of this person’s world.  When you see what becomes of the world after the level, it is a very clear indication that the color of their fantasy is tied in to them trying to make their world world more colorful.  The thing that I think is most indicative of that theory is when, at the last section of the level, you are able to use the wind to spread color to the areas around these color hubs.  In essence, you can paint your world.  You even get a trophy for it.  That painting definitely says that you are helping to paint your own life.

While I will say that the next level is a little trickier to analyze, let’s talk about it.  You start off on a windy day.  But that isn’t the thing that catches my attention.  The thing that is important to notice is that you have windmills in this level.  It’s the first time that we see technology in this fantasy world.  The world that we know has finally entered the mind of our protagonist, and through this level, you are bringing these windmills to life.  That’s important.  For so long, this character has been fighting against becoming part of the world around them, but now they have a chance to truly embrace it.  They use the wind to bring it all to life.  It is a sign of things to come.  The level ends with the sun going down, and you can see a world beyond where there are street lights.

It may not be the biggest or grandest or most beautiful level, but the night level is no less important.  Here, in this place, the world of technology and nature collide.  Not always in obvious ways, either.  The biggest example of technology entering the world is how you are lighting up street lamps and hanging lights.  You use the wind to also bring nature to life, but it is in a very strange glow, that feels surreal.  Like it doesn’t belong.  That’s important.  However, there are some interesting other parts to the level.  Like how there are these ponds that you can also light up.  You can have fireflies come up, and hear the toads croaking.  A sign of those memories of free days and nature, and how they are becoming lesser because of the technological world that is encroaching.  Each of the ponds is in a secluded place.  You have to look for them.  That isn’t a coincidence.  The memories of childhood are becoming put to the side as well.  The main character is growing up, and they are starting to realize it.  When you get to the end of the level, you begin to have things breaking down.  The lights go out, and it gets very ominous.  Dark shadows are all around.  This is your mind fighting against this world.  It is no longer inviting.  Now it’s cold, and frightening.  You don’t want to be a part of it anymore.  Which leads into the next place.

When we face down adulthood, there is a period when we feel hurt.  When we don’t want to accept it.  Fight against it, but you can’t beat it.  Eventually, we all have to grow up.  The stormy level is the protagonist fighting against it.  It is them not wanting to accept.  The fantasy is falling apart, with technology now a dark and terrifying storm.  It shocks and hurt and destroys.  It is unkind and won’t give you what you want.  Hitting the electrified metal will damage you.  This is that border between depression and acceptance.  They are starting to come to like where they are in the world.  They’ve been working to make it better.  How can they surpass it now?  What will happen?  That’s not an easy thing to ask.  The last part of the level is that darkness collapsing around the character, and depending on how well you do, you may or may not make it out unscathed.

At the apartment, when this level ends, you are looking at the light of dawn coming in through the window.  The night is over.  The worst of the pain is over.  Now, our protagonist has come to accept their life, and is able to move forward.  This level is all about acceptance.  Let’s look at how it begins.  You are literally taking in the light of dawn and using that to destroy the ruins of darkness that have been haunting you.  Smashing through the wreckage, and as you do this, a beautiful and colorful city rises up around you.  The light is not just metaphorical.  It’s spreading to everywhere.  Every place that you touch with the light, as you take out the wreckage, it spread to the city and makes it glow.  If you’re anything like me, you wanted to make every part come alive.  The wreckage gets more densely packed, the further you get in, but using the power of the light, you are able to bust through it.  Eventually, you take that light and then use it to smash through the last of the darkness, in a massive tower in the center.  The further in you get, the faster you go.  You rise and rise through the tower, destroying the darkness and wreckage, until you reach the top and a massive tree sprouts in the center.  It all leads up and up, until you go through a window and see a picture on a table, back at your apartment.  Finally, the main character is able to leave behind the world of fantasy and move forward with their life.  A picture of their time is what’s left.

The credits level is the main character remembering how far they have come.  It is a way to look back and see just how much they have done.  But it is all framed inside a picture, so this is no longer a fantasy.  Now it’s just memory.

Part Three: Adulthood

While this game is partly about a person who is living in a new place and has a new life, there is a very clear parallel to growing up.  We all have to do it.  It isn’t easy.  In this economy, growing up is harder than ever, but we don’t have a choice.  None of us can escape time.  It’s our eternal companion that we walk with.  But it is hard.  The journey from fantasizing about days gone by, to finally accepting that we have to move forward is arguably the most difficult that we will ever have to make.  Though, there is also the fact that we are going to grow old and die that we have to contend with.  That isn’t easy.  The milestones in our lives on the journey from birth to death are the things that make this world nice to live in.  The first kiss.  The first apartment.  The first time waking up with wind blowing in your window and the sun shining.  All of these landmarks make their place in our lives.  We mark them all in our own way.

Flower is a game about growing up, accepting a new lot in life, and making the most of whatever we are given.  Sometimes it isn’t easy.  In fact, it never is.  But that’s the cost of living.  For some, that cost is more than they can bear.  It’s a shame when those people choose to cash in.  There have been times where I’ve thought about it.  However, we all have to make our choices, and live with the consequences.  This person decided to choose to improve not only their apartment, but also their world.  So next time you are looking at your drab wall and feel depressed, hang something on it.  You never know what you might find.  That little splash of color could be what brings you out of the fantasy, into a better reality than has ever been.

What are your thoughts about this game?  Think I’m being WAY too analytical?  Let me know in the comments down below.

Until next time, a quote,

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” -Lao Tzu

Peace out,

Maverick

Ray Comfort and The Flag-Hammer

Here’s something to know about Ray Cumfart – he’s a butthurt little bitch.  I’m about to be really, unnecessarily mean to an asshole that really deserves it.  This charlatan needs to be put in his place.  And since he goes so far out of his way to flag videos about his cinematic stool samples, I know that he reads this stuff.  Or has his ministry’s lawyers read it.  Either way, I have a good feeling that this will somehow reach his doorstep.  But if anyone wants to send this his way, by all means.  Let’s get our opinions out there to this conniving troglodyte.

See, there is a YouTube channel called The Bible Reloaded.  They made this really well-done and difficult video that they put a ton of effort into about Ray Cumfart’s latest stool sample, Audacity.  They made very certain to show NONE of the video or audio footage, but Cumfart and his people are known to get the flagging-hammer out and get videos pulled for copyright.  See, Cumfart is a little bitch.  And whenever someone says bad things about him or his little gay lover Kirk Cameron, he gets the butthurt going.  He got the butthurt going with The Bible Reloaded’s video, even thought it showed NONE of his footage.  Not one little bit.  There was NONE in there!  Yet they still got a DMCA take-down on their video.

This is bullshit!  And it so clearly illustrates how pathetic these Fundies are.  These people do NOT engage in ideas.  They just don’t.  When I heard that Kent Hovind has agreed to have a debate on The Drunken Peasants Podcast, I was in shock.  He will actually come and have a real debate with someone?!  That’s incredible!  Thankfully, the guys at DP have gotten JF Gariepy to debate him.  He’s a really smart scientist and a reasonable person, who I know will do right by the debate.  That gives me hope that it will be something that is interesting to listen to.

But it’s telling that Cumfart has a reputation for bringing his company to bear on anyone who bad-mouths him or his work, even if the people who do this have used NO footage from said work.  Well, Ray, I am bad-mouthing you, you snake in the grass.  I am calling you out for what a shitty person you are.  And just to help make sure that you or your lawyers see this post, here’s an image of your movie.

AudacityRay, let me tell you what you’ve done.  You have attacked someone and done damage to them, for making fun of your cinematic garbage.  You gave a copyright strike to that channel, on NO grounds whatsoever!  I really want to know what grounds you have for doing this.  What?  I’m all ears, ya fucking snake!  Tell little ol Lucien how Ray Cumfart and Living Waters was able to somehow get that video pulled down.  Oh, right, I know.  It’s because YouTube is a bunch of lazy cunts who decided to make a system where someone is guilty until they are proven innocent.

Ray, you got a strike on The Bible Reloaded’s channel, even though they showed no evidence of your video, and even if they had, it was a review, and would have been covered under Fair Use!  But they didn’t!  They used none of the footage!  They made these dorky little animations that were funny and cute.  Now, because you had to be a fucking asshole about a little bit of negativity, they nearly couldn’t post videos longer than 15 minutes, which is the bread and butter of their channel.  You were hurting their income, and the work that they do.  For a video criticizing you.  And the only reason that you dropped the claim is because you could have faced legal action.  Gotta keep that money coming in from the people who buy your shit.  This is so much bullshit, and the fact that you can defend that, along with your gay lover Kirk, is amazing.

Let me say this clearly – Ray Cumfart is a charlatan.  He is a demagogue.  He will go after you if you criticize his works.  He will destroy your livelihood out of spite.  He will fuck up your work, just so that he doesn’t have to get his pwecious feewings hurt.  That’s the kind of man this is.  So, whenever I hard someone talk about how good a person he is, I think to myself – does this person just not pay attention, or do they simply not care?  It could go either way.  And for that, I will happy say – Ray, you suck.  Your movies are cinematic pukestains.  You and Kirk should just come out of the closet and be done with it.  Fuck you.

Until next time, a quote,

“When you tear out a man’s tongue, you are not proving him a liar.  You’re only telling the world that you fear what he might say.”  -Tyrion Lannister, Game of Thrones

Peace out,

Maverick

SIONR: The Last Airbender Sequel is Happening…

I have only one question – who keeps giving M. Night money?!  This man is a shit director who can’t make a good movie to save his life!  My cousin Peter said, “this just goes to show the power of making one good film.”  He of course was talking about The Sixth Sense.  I pointed out that it was two good movies.  The other being Unbreakable.  Two good movies is all it takes for Hollywood to ignore all the flat-out garbage that this man has made?  How does that work?!  Hollywood nepotism must be the stuff of legends.  Never mind, we already know that, don’t we?  After all, Tyler Perry and the Wayans Brothers keep being given money.  But after taking a fucking dump on one of the greatest animated series of all time, Shyamalan is back, and he’s ready to do it all over again.

This is a genuine mystery to me.  How on Earth does this man keep convincing people to throw money at him?  Do the people funding his movies even watch them?  Does he dutch rudder the producers when nobody is looking?  What is the reason?

Let’s look at M. Night’s career.  The Sixth Sense was great.  It was iconic.  The fear was there, the atmosphere was good, and the twist at the end caught us off-guard.  Unbreakable was also pretty damn good.  A serious look at how much being a superhero in real life would be very unpleasant, with another good twist.  It isn’t anywhere near as famous as your previous film, but it was still pretty alright.  To all the people who like Signs, I’m sorry.  It sucks.  It’s so stupid.  I mean, the aliens can’t get through a wooden door?  Really?  And they came to conquer a planet that is filled with the thing that kills them?  Really?  Who can defend that garbage?  That’s when the path really started to turn.  Lady in the Water was pointless.  It was basically Shyamalan sucking his own dick.  After all, his character is the chosen one, whose works would not be understood in their own time.  Real subtle, Night.  Really fucking subtle.  Then we have The Village.  That movie.  Why does it exist?  For real, what was the point?   Nothing happened.  Nothing at all.

Then came the films that were so awful that they are amazing.  Like The Happening.  It was plants!  The twist is that it was plants!  The moment in the film where it’s discovered that it’s just plants were great.  But it gets better.  Like the scenes where Mark Wahlberg is talking in a squeaky and nasal tone.  Or when he talks to a plant and asks it if it’s okay for them to use the bathroom there.  That scene is iconic.  Oh, and let’s talk about After Earth.  I guess I can’t blame you too much for this, M. Night.  After all, Will Smith was all over this production.  Kind of dropped the ball there, huh big guy?  Yeah, that was pretty bad.  But still kind of funny.

However, the crowning achievement of failure from this man has to be his adaptation of The Last Airbender.  That film is so bad and takes such a giant dump on its source material.  What’s more, I can’t even laugh at the admittedly-funny parks because of had badly it shits on the source material.  Aside from Dev Patel, who admittedly was doing his best, every single character in that movie was fucking garbage.  Complete and utter garbage.  Where did any of those child actors learn to “act?”  They clearly learned in a place where they did no actual learning.  I hope they stayed in school, because there is no future for them outside of that.  Add to that the TERRIBLE bending in the film.  All that fluidity and smooth motions that were praised in the original series, based on actual martial arts, were thrown out the window for that film, so they could have people flailing their arms around like imbeciles.

After how unbelievably-bad that movie was, who is looking forward to the sequel?  That’s not rhetorical.  If any of my audience is, please tell me.  And be so kind as to tell me why.  I legitimately don’t get it.  I mean, you want to see more of that?  You want to see more terrible child actors and their terrible “acting?”  M. Night recently came out and defended his film.  He just didn’t get why people didn’t like it.  After all, he got kids too!  The show had kids!  M. Night logic.  Reminds me of when I would see the director of Birdemic try and defend his work.  Neither of them seem to realize that people only watch their movies now to make fun of them.  Actually, that’s not accurate.  M. Night seems to know that.  He just doesn’t get why.

Well, if M. Night wants to waste his time and money on a movie that people will only see because it is guaranteed to suck.  It is a genuine mystery to me who gives this man money to make movies.  Either they never watch his stuff, or they just don’t care about quality.  That’s Hollywood for ya.

Until next time, a quote,

“I would gladly have accepted a heaping spoonful of nepotism when I got out of college and was looking for a job.”  -Sloane Crosley

Peace out,

Maverick

 

Making Gay “Normal” is Wrong Now?

If you ever want to have your mind blown, go to a site called Everyday Feminism.  It has articles so stupid that attempting to read them will just make your head hurt.  I tried to do that with an article I just saw, and now I have something of a headache because of all the stupid.  But before I go there, let’s have a little digression.

At least a year ago now, Ellen Page came out as being gay.  My thoughts?  Put simply – neat, I guess.  Good for her.  I hope she enjoys the gay sex with the females that she has gay sex with.  Along with her gay relationships or whatever.  She’s kind of cute, so yeah, her ladies are lucky girls.  Whatever.  The way I see it, that was the correct reaction to have.  Why?  Because I think something the LGBT community lacks is being assimilated into society at large.  How do they do that?  Easy – by becoming boring.  Be as boring as you possibly can be.  If someone sees a gay person on a show and they are just some person who files their taxes and works a 9 to 5, they won’t care about them anymore than they care about any other person.  It will just be as normal part of life and that’s fine.  That’s how I see it.  And yet, this community goes out of their way to be as noticeable and interesting as possible.

For real, you have these gay pride events, where some very interesting people are doing interesting things, like walking around in ass-less chaps.  That’s pretty damn interesting.  So interesting that people pay special attention and start talking about it more.  Who gets helped by this?  I can already hear the argument – this is a reaction to years of oppression!  Yeah, I get that there were some mistakes made.  But a lot like Morgan Freeman’s thoughts on Black History Month, I can’t help but think that all of this is counter-productive.  Because it just keeps these people in people’s sight and mind.  At least, it used to.

With the passing of the Supreme Court ruling that has made gay marriage legal in all 50 states, being gay is FINALLY looking to head into the realm of what’s normal.  Just as a white girl marrying a black man or vice-versa is now something that is more-or-less accepted, save in some of the dirtiest parts of the Bible Belt, but that’s something that we all accept too.  There are backwards, totally retarded parts of this country with stupid people.  It’s just how things are.  Being gay is finally headed to that golden utopia of no longer being something that anyone talks about or cares about or gives two shits about.  With gay marriage finally being fully recognized in all 50 states, and it being a part of culture and legal rights, they are able to settle in with the boring doldrums of typical American life.  Which brings us back to the Everyday Feminism article.

According to them, being part of a state of being called “homonormative” is totally wrong.  Why?  Something I have believed for a long time – these people don’t want to be normal.  Now that videos like that hilarious one on College Humor about gay men marrying straight men’s girlfriends doesn’t really have any cultural resonance anymore, the issues of the LGBT community have gotten very much sidestepped.  Now we can focus on things that aren’t part of this issue that really should have been solved 20 years ago.  Everyday Feminism takes severe umbrage with this.  In their article entitled “Homonormativity 101: And How it is Hurting Our Movement,” we get a rather long and boring look at how these people seem to believe that being as unnoticed and unattended as any other part of society today is just SO bad.  Because I guess that being accepted by society is…bad?

To borrow Shoe0nHead’s statement – the oppression olympics never ends.  Looks, LGBT community, you have fought for equal rights, and now more than ever, you have them.  Are there still some issues to mop up?  Sure.  And it’s good to stay on those issues.  But with the major issue being knocked out, this is what was going to happen.  Now, you are going to be ignored.  That’s a good thing.  It’s good that nobody will care anymore whether you do another guy in butt or another girl face-first.  It’s good that nobody will care anymore to see two dudes holding hands or two chicks (aside from old people or Bible Belt people, but again, we all grow to accept these things as part of the world we live in).  This is what you fought for!  You fought for the right to be ignored.  For not one person to give a flying fudgsicle about your personal life.  Why would someone think that that’s a bad thing…?  For real, genuinely stumped.  Reading that article was like reading the riot act of the “Oppression Olympics.”  I cannot understand why anyone would think that being considered part of normal society and having people not give two fucks about you is a bad thing.  Insert oppression reasons and some totalizing system that means that everyone who’s gay is uber-oppressed and you have the argument in a nutshell.

LGBT community, let’s have a moment.  You won.  You fought the good fight and you won the biggest victory.  The Blitz is over.  A lot like GamerGate, now you have to take off the armor and put down the sword and be willing to move forward.  That’s how this works.  It’s good.  I’m happy for you all.  As a bisexual man, I am totally down with you all taking your place in the culture at large.  However, this also means that whenever you get all up about some issue, culture at large is going to roll their eyes and do what I do when I heard stupid bullshit like how air conditioning in offices is somehow a gender issue – roll my eyes.  The war has been won.  Now it’s time for you all to make peace and be ready to move forward with your lives.  And that’s a great thing.  Embrace it, love it, and be as ordinary and dull as everyone else.

Because is still how you make all of this stuff work.  To truly become part of society, you become dull.

Until next time, a quote,

“Everyone is in this big race to be the most ‘progressive’ and the most ‘open-minded’ and the most ‘oppressed.’  It is the strangest thing I have ever seen.”  -Shoe0nHead

Peace out,

Maverick

Another Sad Attempt at Video Game Condemnation from the Media

I don’t know how many of you were around to witness the early days of GamerGate, but one of the things that truly got it off the ground was the gaming media going out of their way to attack their own audience.  Insane, asinine, and totally antithetical to publications that want an audience to rake in money, it was a stupid move that ended up biting them in the ass.  What’s more, it was all so utterly coordinated.  Almost like there was collusion of some sort.  It was unveiled by Milo Yiannopoulos that it was all a big collusion, via a Google + group called “GameJournoPros.”  That was just one of the many bits of corruption in the media that was shown.  Then, when Christina Hoff Sommers made her video defending this idea that there is sexism in gaming, by showing that it just isn’t true.  The response from her was all very coordinated as well.

Now we have another series of very coordinated hit pieces against gaming, this time in the form of a headline that you might have seen once or twice.  Perhaps you’ve seen things like this around – “Teenage Boys Think Video Games are Sexist” or something to that effect.  These articles have come out, and each and every one of them seems to be utterly missing something.  Something so basic that it boggles my mind that there are not more people talking about it.  Rather than go after these articles in some individual way, I am instead going to pwn them by just looking at the title alone.  For real, debunking every point they make can be done by looking at these titles.  Look them up for yourself, should you feel the urge.  However, let’s get started.

To sites like Time magazine and The Guardian, here’s something that I guess your “research teams” (an oxymoron in its own right for these publications) didn’t figure out – the average of a gamer is now 25-35.  That is the primary age of the demographics that play games.  What the fuck do we care if teenage boys take umbrage with women in video games?  That’s the lynchpin of your argument?  Teen boys don’t like women in video games?  Well, you got us.  Us GGers (seriously, one of the articles is “Sorry GamerGate, Even Teenage Boys are sick of sexist video games) are wrong because a demographic doesn’t like something?  And I’m sure that whatever out-of-their-ass study they have to back this up (because, as we’ve seen with the “study” that said that 1 in 3 young men would rape if they could get away with it) will make this point in some…vague, totally stupid way.  But yeah, what’s the point?  For real, I want to see where this information is coming from.  Teen boys?  Boys who are discovering porn for the first time?  Boys who are having their hormones kicking their ass and want to get in the pants of every girl the can find who’s willing?  That demographic?  What was the sample size for this study?  What were the conditions?  This all feels REALLY convenient, to me.

Next, I like how these publications straight-up don’t talk about girls.  For all the fervor that women like Anita Sarkeesian say that girls play games to, the study that they use to talk about how teenagers don’t like sexy women in games doesn’t even have teen girls in the headline.  And people call me sexist.  Wow.  I suppose I can just add The Guardian to my ever-growing list of pro-SJW rags that cut girls (especially lesbian and bisexual ones) out of the conversation about sexuality in video games.  Well, if these publications gave the fairer sex the time of day when talking about sex, whatever would they do?

Finally, I suppose we’re not even gonna talk about how the overwhelming audience of competitive action games is male.  And, as Christina Hoff Sommers point out rather excellently – they like to see sexy women.  I guess we can just ignore their glossing over of that as their way of giving credence to these idiots who believe that gender is somehow “taught.”  Like it isn’t part of our biology, because we are a sexually dimorphic species.  Nope.  That’s totally nuts.

These hit pieces against video games are a dime a dozen these days.  Gaming is the thing to vilify.  It used to be violence in games.  Now it’s sex.  But here’s the thing – gamers don’t really care.  Nor do game development companies.  Why?  That’s easy.  For gamers, we have been dealing with disapproval for most, if not all of our entire lives.  Society, our parents, our teachers, you name it.  Whether they think us one trench-coat away from being the Columbine killers, or one sexy girl in panties in a game away from rape (because that’s TOTALLY how that works, right?), we have had to hear shit like this our entire lives.  It’s just how things are.  As for game development companies, here’s something that I guess they didn’t know – these people do REAL research.  The companies that make AAA games have some of the biggest marketing teams in existence.  These are multi-billion dollar companies.  They want to sell things to the most people they can, to make the most money.  And guess what – they know what gamers want a hell of a lot better than Time magazine does.  They know their audience, and they give us what we want.  Most of the time.  Unless the make yearly boredom like Call of Duty or what the Assassin’s Creed franchise has become.

In the end, all of this was nothing but a series of carefully-time hit pieces that were released, with some clearly just plagiarizing off the others.  One rag decided to talk about this, and the other less-effort-putting rags decided to rip it off.  Fifth Estate media is lazy, and doesn’t give two shits about factual reporting, because I have NEVER seen Time make a retraction.  Ever.  Or correct their own bullshit.  This is just a way to make gamers (and especially GGers) the enemy, with the social justice crowd and their ideas as heroes.  Aren’t they proud?

Until next time, a quote,

“We are currently wealthy, fat, comfortable, and complacent.  We have a built-in allergy to unpleasant or disturbing information.  Our mass media reflects this.  But unless we get up off our fat surpluses and recognize that television, in the main, is being used to distract, delude, amuse, and insulate us, then television and those who finance it, those who look at it, and those who work at it, may see a totally different picture too late.”  -Edward R. Murrow

Peace out,

Maverick

Really Good Bad Advice: Number Two

Another week, another run-in with insane people who feel the need to tell people who are not me about their insane problems, and think that they are going to get something from this that is of value.  I really should make this a weekly thing, but sometimes I just can’t find the self-help nonsense that gets my giggle muscles flowing.  But now worries about that this week.  I found something that is so fun to read that I am going to take this apart piece by piece.  It’s just that worthwhile.  A reminder to all of us that parents are crazy, egotistical, and some people are just knucking futs.  Let’s get started.

Dear person who isn’t (thank God) me,

I’m a godmother to a wonderful 7-year-old girl. Her mother is my best friend of 20 years. She is an excellent mom. I do not have any children.

Oh, I can already tell – this is gonna be good.  Where’s my popcorn…?

Recently the three of us and a group of girlfriends celebrated a “ladies weekend getaway.”

When we got to our destination, I overheard my goddaughter ask her mom if she was going to “get drunk.” My heart broke a little.

Why?  Does this child’s Mommy Dearest always get plastered?  Lighting up with Caribbean Rum at 10 in the morning?  She should take my approach and wake-and-bake instead.  Much better.  Still, seems like this kid has a handle on the situation.  Why are you so distraught?

Later I was getting ready to join everybody in the pool, when the child came running to me, hysterically crying that her “mama was taking her clothes off.”

Um, kid, I’m just gonna put this out there – she does that a lot.  Why, when she had you, she did that very thing.  Then she got on her back (or her knees.  However she does it) and let some nice gentleman (who is never mentioned in this letter, so he must be a real winner) enter her.  You’re gonna have to learn this at some point, so you might as well learn it now.

I peeked out the window and sure enough her mom was topless. Honestly, it’s not that big a deal among the adults, and not so much out of character for my best friend, but her daughter was freaked out. I told her that Mom was being silly and that she should talk to her about her worries. She said she couldn’t because she would get in trouble. She didn’t want to return to the pool and so I stayed inside with her.

Geez, kid, you act like you saw a giant octopus monster coming out of her vag.  It’s just tits.  What is your deal?  You’re gonna have them too, one day.  Maybe.  Or maybe not.  Some girls don’t develop like others.  Still, you’re gonna have to make peace with your boobs at some point.  I can already hear the Tumblrites chomping at the bits to talk about the “gender binary” and how dumb it is…

Her mother came in about 20 minutes later. She told her daughter she was disappointed in her and that nude bodies were nothing to be ashamed of. (What was upsetting to the girl was seeing her mom drunk, removing her swimsuit and behaving foolishly.)

Um, no, that’s not what the kid said.  She said that her mother was getting naked, and that was her issue.  There were some earlier hints that the drunkenness seems to be a problem, the kid was having a freak-out about her mother’s tits.  And I’m kind of with the mom.  It isn’t that weird.  What is the kid’s issue with boobs, anyway?  For real, so much of my amusement about this comes from how nuts this kid got about her mom showing her tits.  I get the feeling that there is some history of this woman getting drunk and then getting naked.  Is Mommy kind of a ho, kid?  Just putting that out there.

I chimed in (bad idea?), saying I couldn’t stand seeing this young girl be silenced about something that was bothering her.

Yeah, chiming in was a bad idea.  And did the mom shut the kid down?  This story has plot holes.  Which bugs me because I think this is kind of funny.  I mean, why does this kid find nudity so insane?  Especially among females.  I mean, she’s a girl too.  Does she think that female bodies are gross?  If Mommy is a ho, then there might be something genetic here.  Especially since Daddy doesn’t seem to be around.  Man, this is getting kind of dark, isn’t it?

My best friend said, “I’m trying to teach her that nudity is not shameful. She’s very dramatic and freaks out about everything.” I replied, “You should have an internal barometer about what’s minor and major in regards to her ‘freak-outs.’

Given what you’ve told me, I’m kind of with the mom on this one.  This kid is freaking out about a chick being naked.  Unless there is some totally disturbed history of this woman getting naked with her kid in uncomfortable ways, it sounds like this kid is kind of nuts.  Just putting this out there – maybe there’s something to what she said.  And your advice is terrible.  From your own description, this kid was so distraught as to not want to be around her mother when all she was doing was showing off her tits.

Though, I think I’m gonna call it – there has to be some history here.  Some dark, disturbed history of this woman being naked around this child.  Naked and very drunk.  Makes one kind of uncomfortable, but hey, that’s the story we’re dealing with here.  If we peel back the layers, who knows what we’ll find.

She basically told me when I have kids of my own and am a perfect mother I should talk to her then.

I understand this logic, but I felt like I had a responsibility to my goddaughter.

Did I overreact? Did I do the right thing? What do you think – Distraught Godmother from Deleware

This is pretty easy – yeah, you did overreact.  Unless you want to peek in and see just how far down the Rabbit Hole goes on this, I would leave it alone.  This woman sounds kind of trashy.  I get that she’s been your best friend for 20 years, but she clearly has booze and nakedness issues.  And given the kid’s reaction, I have a feeling that these things are mixed.  Nothing good can come from trying to learn more about this, so I would just leave it alone.

So, that’s my self-help for the week.  If you find anything worth responding to, let me know in the Comments.

Until next time, a quote,

“You may pay for school, but you can’t buy class.”  -Anonymous

Peace out,

Maverick

I Hate Watching Good Ideas Fail (A response to The Sarkeesian Effect)

The SJW crowd must be laughing right about now.  I don’t blame them.  The levels of incompetence on display are the stuff of legend.  What started as a project that could have been the anti-social justice rallying cry, showing that we can talk to others in a totally rational way, ended with this nonsense.  It’s a joke.  It’s a terrible, terrible joke.  The punch line being – we have given the SJW crowd ammunition to use against us to show that we are immature, delusional imbeciles that can’t do anything right.  That’s what pisses me off the most.  Because you know what, if this had been done right, without all the dumb-fuck drama, this documentary could have been a nail in the coffin.

Thunderf00t made an excellent video about what went wrong in all this, so I’ll let you all watch that.  It’s a little long, but I think it’s worth your time, because you can truly grasp how utterly doomed this all has been, from people who shouldn’t have gone anywhere near this.

Something that I think that Thunderf00t forgot to talk about is the fact that this film should have been something more.  Because, if you ask me, when I hear a title like The Sarkeesian Effect, it makes me ask a simple question – what has been her effect?  What has been the effect of Sarkeesian and her brand of Puritanical, Sex feminism been on society as a whole or just the gaming industry.  Doesn’t that sounds like a fascinating topic to truly examine.  In better hands, this documentary could have been something amazing.  When I heard that they were interviewing Jack Thompson about this, I thought – finally!  Let’s actually talk about what it means to be a gaming critic and to seriously delve into the world of insane video game condemnation.  Because that’s what both Sarkeesian and Thompson have done.  If you saw her statements at E3 this year, Sarkeesian even used Thompson’s talking points about video games being connected to violence.

But that’s not what we got, is it?  Instead, we have a crap-ton of YouTube drama that has gotten so ridiculous, to the point that now the very people that we have been trying to expose to the world at large as hucksters are being given legitimacy?  That bit at the end, where you see Owen and Aurini’s insane views on stuff, I just rubbed my eyes and suddenly felt very dumb.  The disillusionment about what I am seeing here takes me back to another movement that I had been in support of.

Anyone remember Occupy Wall Street?  Yeah, that was a movement that started out with great potential, but then got utterly destroyed because of drama.  Granted, this time it was SJW drama infecting the movement.  Watch the video on the “Progressive Stack.”  That shit will blow your mind.  It’s unfathomably stupid.  Or there were the “No-Rape Zones” (because I’m sure that rapists totally care that somewhere is a No-Rape Zone.  Right?) or the Native American rain dance rights.  But the straw that broke the camel’s back was an interview that I saw on The Colbert Report.  I swear, I could almost see Colbert trying not to laugh.  I don’t blame him.  Just like I don’t blame the SJWs crowd if they see all this madness and choose to laugh.  It is funny, in that horrifically-depressing sort of way.

You know what the worst part of all of this is – a friend of mine on Twitter has told me that she has seen Owen’s version of the documentary.  It seems that Aurini has his own, and he has gone into some truly insane places with it.  Jordan Owen could have made a truly splendid movie, but that doesn’t matter.  The drama associated with this film has damned it so badly that it has finally become what Aurini wanted it to be – the stuff of legend.  Yeah, you got your wish.  It is legendary in that it has shown our side of the fence to be immature children who saw the need to fight it out and make this into a giant public dramafest instead of delivering a good product.  And now people like Thunderf00t are saying that they want nothing to do with this project.  The people in the film want nothing to do with it.

Perhaps there is another simpler answer to all this – let’s get someone who perhaps isn’t as attached to all the drama to make a documentary about third-wave feminism and its battle with the gaming community.  Someone like Christina Hoff Sommers, who knows the community but has no immediate attachment to it.  There’s an idea.  Make it into something like that.  If a group of people could make a fantastic documentary about Evangelical Christians and their insane summer camp and keep it pretty damn objective, then clearly it is possible to make a film about all of the madness associated with third-wave feminism and make objective.

But maybe I am just dreaming a little big here.  Fuckin’ A…

Until next time, a quote,

“The problem with incompetence is its inability to recognize itself.”  -Orrin Woodward

Peace out,

Maverick