SIONR: Incredibles 2 and the Death of Pixar

I’ve repeatedly said that Disney is pure evil and they destroy everything that I love.  They turned one of my favorite films into a fucking Kinect game.  That’s how bad they are.  They take good ideas or properties and turn them into shit.  Most recently with Star WarsThe Last Jedi was a dumpster fire, and if what I am hearing about the latest film in the franchise, it went through three directors, had multiple rewrites, and the guy who plays the titular character not only looks NOTHING like him (he’s a fucking pretty boy.  Nothing even remotely roguish at all), but can’t act his way out of a paper bag.  They had to hire an acting coach for him after shooting the bulk of his scenes.  So yeah, that will be a dumpster fire too.  I mean, they barely show this guy in the trailer for his own film.  If that isn’t a sign that this movie is dead on arrival, I don’t know what is.

Now we come to The Incredibles 2.  I really liked the first one.  It’s not my favorite Pixar film, but it’s up there.  A film about a family of superheroes, mixing some fantastic action, great scoring (the score for that film is phenomenal), and both superhero and human elements to make a great story.  It balanced out every character to give them an arc and show them grow.  It’s great stuff.  Then the trailer for the sequel dropped.

This film looks terrible.  So, we go from a story about a family of superheroes, to the mom being off doing stuff, while the dad is being a stay-at-home dad with superbaby.  Wow.  That’s so boring that writing it I felt myself lose energy.  Who thought this was a good idea?  I mean, all the creative potential that a sequel of this film could be.  Like, it’s been many years since the first one.  Why not age the characters up a little?  Have them dealing with the reemergence of superheroes in society and them being kind of swept up in things?  Or maybe have them still having to be in the shadows and yet still doing good, now accepting their desire to be heroes, yet still being trapped behind a screen of anonymity.  All the cool ideas are there, but what is the final product?  Stay at home dad and superbaby!  Oh boy!

It hurts me inside to think of how Pixar has died.  It really has.  While the death of 2D animation breaks my fucking heart (it is an art form that has died and will likely never come back in the way it once was with the old Disney magic), I did grow up with this company.  I remember seeing Toy Story and thinking it was crazy cool.  My favorite of their films, Ratatouille, is a charming story.  The Incredibles combines so many good elements.  This studio once was believed to be setting the new standard in kids movies story-telling.

Then Brave happened.  With that movie I felt something.  There was a shift in the films that they were putting out, and the content immediately starting getting progressively worse.  You’d have films that stand out in the crowd, but the bulk were either really mediocre or outright bad.  Plus, a lot of their staff was now under Disney directly making some of the biggest bargain-bin garbage ever put to film.  Films that were made only to help the influx of capital for the fiscal quarters they were made.

When I heard that they were doing a sequel to The Incredibles, my heart leapt.  Finally, a return to form!  Get some of the classy style that was modeled first in 2D drawings and then put to digital models.  Great voice acting, great score.  All the potential was there!  Then the trailer drops and I realize that I’m seeing yet-another bargain-bin movie that everyone will forget about just as fast as they did Monster’s University or Cars 2 (or the original Cars for that matter).  This kills me inside.

Disney is like the film version of EA.  They take IPs and studios with good ideas and then run them into the ground.  Does it not blow your mind the way it does mine that there are over twice as many mediocre/bad films in the Star Wars franchise as there are good ones?  Over six!  That’s insane!  Marvel has been kept from joining these ranks simply because Kevin Feige is at the helm.  Once he leaves, they’re next.  It took a man with vision and a passion for the source material to keep this genre from becoming bargain-bin shit too, and there are people who make the argument that the brand is getting old.  I think I have avoided this thought process simply because I only watch the films in there that I think look good. Pixar is gonna be their version of Visceral Games, one of these days.  It hurts me inside.

Until next time, a quote,

“Turians think they know a thing about a scorched-earth response.  Fuck ’em!” – Jack, Mass Effect 2

Peace out,

Maverick

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SIONR: Amy Hennig Doesn’t Know What She’s Talking About

I hate when people inside the industry trash-talk elements of it and pull things right out of their ass.  EA shut down Visceral Games, an action that had a lot of gamers going “well, they got the EA treatment.”  As Bioware will after Anthem has more lootbox bullshit and gamers give it the finger.  It was genuinely nice to see gamers be able to come together after the disaster that was Battlefront II and be able to vote with their wallets against this sort of thing.  EA will be bringing the microtransactions back in that game, everyone knows that, but the real question is what will happen with Anthem.  I have no intention of playing that game.  I don’t do online MMOs.  But a lot of people are speculating that just like Battlefront II, Anthem has a lot of its gameplay elements centered around lootboxes.  Given that now the gaming public is openly fighting back against this, EA’s cash cow might also bleed money.

Which brings us to Amy Hennig.  After months of her Star Wars project being destroyed, she finally sat down for an interview and really tore into gamers.  In her mind, EA was somewhat justified in destroying her project, saying that gamers who claim that we like single-player games are not putting our money where our mouths are.  She says that last year had games like Wolfenstein 2 and The Evil Within 2 which both reviewed well and had poor sales.

Here’s the thing, Amy – I don’t know if you are aware of this, but people like me only have so much money.  I don’t have the capital to waste of things that I don’t like.  With my adulting costs, medical costs, and things like like, I don’t have the money to buy all the games that sound good.  I have to buy the ones that I really think are worth my time, and I’m selective about that.  It’s not like I get the money back if it was a bad investment.  I’m sorry that that means that I bought Horizon: Zero Dawn and Persona 5 instead of those other games.

Then she decided that she was going to say that EA is justified in its business practices because the cost of making games is too high, and it’s use gamers who are responsible for that.  Apparently, we are the ones demanding visual fidelity get higher and higher.  This statement bugs me on so many levels.  See, I have argued, many, many times, the I don’t need the most massive fidelity in order to like a game.  My favorite game of 2015 used pastel colors and very low textures intentionally to create a style all its own.  While I do believe the facial animations could have been improved, it was still a fun game with its own style that did not cost an arm and a leg to make.

I wish that more game devs would try unique things with the visuals in the medium instead of just subscribing to the most high-def design.  Take cues from Mirror’s Edge or JRPGs or Borderlands.  But even without that, I don’t need the most cutting edge amazing graphics to like a game.  Just give me expressive characters and a good narrative.  Is that so fucking hard?  Who are these people who demand the graphics be so insanely detailed and rich at all times?  I need to know who these people are and tell them that they are part of a problem.

Here’s another thing, Amy, if you want to make a statement about that, then lead the fucking charge!  Make a game where you use a different visual style.  Have it be all its own and show gamers that something different can be just as good as something that costs astronomically more to make.  Then we can stop having EA fuck with us and you fucking defending them!  Because these companies aren’t doing this because of rising costs.  They are still making astronomical profits, you fucking moron!  They are doing it because of greed.  They’re doing it because they see games like Grand Theft Auto Online and Destiny and they want to get in on that insanely lucrative pie.

It is occurring to me that linear, story-focused games may be dying in the AAA space.  I personally miss when devs were willing to make a AA game that could have a small budget and take more risks.  We are seeing some devs be willing to risk that.  Or they are willing to take their time and get things right.  But Hennig believing that the greedy and destructive practices is gamers’ fault bugs me.  This woman sounds bitter about her game being cancelled, and I get that.  I really do.  It must be so hard to watch something you put your heart and soul into die.  She said as much in the interview, not knowing how much creative energy she has left.  That’s sad to hear.  I hope she goes back to Sony, who has shown that they are not going to be abandoning the story-driven game.

What will gaming be in ten years?  I’ve said before that if story-driven single player games die, I’m done.  That will be when I leave the industry.  I don’t know how many people are with me.

Until next time, a quote,

“There’s so much grey to every story. Nothing is black and white.” – Lisa Ling

Peace out,

Maverick

SIONR: Feminists are the Ones Objectifying Women

Listening to feminists talk about women in video games, you get this weird idea about how they see women in them.  All the time it’s about how women are sex objects and viewed as something you can use and throw away.  But you wanna know something I have noticed about that?  The only person calling women in video games sex objects is feminists.  That’s it.  I genuinely haven’t seen any gamers talking about female characters like they are a sex object.

The obvious rebuttal is, “but men talk about their bodies in a sexual way!  How is that not objectifying?!”  If someone talks about sex, that means they see the person as an object?  I am romantically and sexually attracted to a girl I went to have coffee with today.  Does that mean I see her as an object?  I have had fantasies about the two of us being intimate together.  Almost certainly never going to happen, but that’s what it is.  I still see her as a person that I find interesting and enjoy talking to, who I just happen to also find appealing on a sexual level.  There have been plenty such women in my life.  A couple men too.

But I can hear you say “but that’s real people!  They have personalities and aren’t just made to look like a sex toy!”  Plenty of sexy women in games have personalities too.  Let’s take an example Anita Sarkeesian loved to rag on – Bayonetta.  That woman was a kick-ass Umber Witch who killed angels and took shit from no one, and yet she has weaknesses and human flaws.  She has a child following her who calls her “mummy” and almost has her believing that she is the girl’s real mom.

Let’s look at another example – Jack from Mass Effect 2.  She’s damn-near naked from the waist up.  The only thing covering her nipples are belts.  But she has a dark and twisted history of horrific abuse which had led her to become a violent monster.  The vast number of tattoos on her body each have a story, all of which you never know.  She’s a badass fighter and it kind of pissed me off that I couldn’t get her back on my team in the last game.  I’m talking about Mass Effect 3, by the way, not Andromeda.  So far as I’m concerned, that game doesn’t exist.

Okay, perhaps that is too gray for all of you.  After all, it’s pretty clear that her nakedness is part of her character.  Let’s go into a character who is all about being sexy – Tina Armstrong.  She’s is the stereotypical big-breasted and skimpy outfit blonde character.  And yet, I still don’t see her as nothing but an object.  I see her as badass fighter who can and will fuck you up, all while having a sexy body to boot.  I guarantee that if she was a real person, not one guy who thinks she is sexy in the series she is in would have the balls to hit on her in real life.  Turns out, sexy women who have confidence in their bodies tend to have most men being too scared to talk with them.  Confidence is powerful and nobody could say Tina isn’t powerful.

But then I see Twitter posts like this one (linked here) saying that when women are sexy in video games, that makes me think less of women in general, it really does rub me as these people inserting their own biases into their posts.  See, I don’t think less of women as a whole in any way because of sexy women in gaming.  I haven’t met a single gamer who isn’t a MGTOW who has.  I can jerk off to B Jenet in King of Fighters and still think nothing less of my incredibly capable female coworkers or supervisor who is the Momma Bear of our office.  She’s tough, and more than a little distant, but her knowledge has made all of us know that when we don’t have an answer, she does.

I’m starting to think that feminists are the ones who are really seeing women as lesser because of what they see in media.  It’s already clear that sex negative feminists like Anita Sarkeesian are terrified of sexuality and can’t handle women who aren’t scared to death of their womanhood.  She goes out of her way to insult all the fictional examples of women who aren’t afraid of their boobs or vaginas.  Makes one wonder what they think of real women too.  But I wonder what the chick who wrote that Twitter posts thinks of them too.

We’ve been getting more and more stories coming out recently of male feminists who are actually perverted pigs who used feminism to try and get in women’s pants.  Makes you wonder if they are actually the same people that women like this think of.  But then you have to wonder if the woman who wrote that post is just the same.  If she sees women in sexy outfits and does nothing but reduce them down to their clothes.  Would make her very female.  After all, it isn’t men who are constantly critical of women because of their clothes or makeup.  Not typically.  The vast majority of shit-talkers of how people look are women.  Men don’t care about the dress so-and-so celebrity wore.  Women do.  Men don’t care about what brand of handbag such-and-such had.  Women do.  Nowhere does the average man care about this stuff.  Women do.

So maybe it isn’t the sexist gamers who are really doing the objectifying.  Maybe it’s the feminists who say that they are the ones looking to fight for equality.  I think Syetenatheist made a song about this.

Until next time, a quote,

“The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it.” – H.L. Mencken

Peace out,

Maverick

SIONR: Single Player Microtransactions

I don’t know who to blame for this.  I suppose I could blame the dumb-shit gamers who actually made this happen.  After all, it truly is their fault.  They had every opportunity to not support this kind of behavior.  Back when games had them paying for stupid shit like custom skins or weapon packs.  Maybe it could have been when games started having Season Passes.  Maybe then?  Yeah, that seems like a good fucking point to have stopped.  I know!  Maybe it was when you had games start becoming pay-to-win multiplayer experiences?  Yeah, that seems like a great point to stop.  But nope, people too stupid to vote with their wallets enabled this.  You all are a bunch of enablers, allowing game companies to gouge you without any real effort to stem the tide.  I guess it isn’t just fools and their money who are parted.  It’s gamers too.

Middle Earth: Shadow of War has single-player microtransactions.  What’s more, it is genuinely pay-to-win.  If you aren’t willing to grind to insane degrees, you are going to shell out a frankly absurd amount of money to get the true ending to the game.  It’s insulting.  It’s legalized gambling in the gaming sphere.  After all, players are shelling out money to game companies with no guarantee of what the return is going to be.  None.  If you’re spending money without knowing what you’re getting in the hopes of getting something good, you know what I call that – a gamble.  Gaming companies have made gambling a part of their pay-to-win formula.  It’s disgusting.  It’s insulting.  Why aren’t more people outraged by this?!

You know that Battlefront II game you’re so hyped for?!  Guess what, it’s entirely pay-to-win!  And they use the same formula!  Loot boxes that you have no guarantee of what they will give you.  Whether it be something good or complete shit.  If you want to get better weapons, then you will shell out an insane amount of money to get enough boxes in order to get the amount of spare parts you need.  This game all the stupid fucking Star Wars fanboys are going to cum in their pants over is screwing you.  No joke, it’s fucking screwing you.  You people are the reason I am done with Star Wars.  All the fanboys who cried when Episode VII’s trailer was released.  Did nobody notice what a fucking rip-off of the original that was?!  Did anyone notice how this new game is basically just a re-skin of Empire Strikes Back?  Maybe it’s the walkers attacking a rebel base with a small group of defenders coming out in low-altitude vehicles that gave it away?  Oh, and our hero is off on a planet alone with an old Jedi learning the ways of the Force, and it seems to be pointing to it ending with them being tempted by the Dark Side.  Sound, fucking, familiar?!

Part of me is genuinely worried that this practice is going to become commonplace.  Soon studios who are known for quality content are going to decide, “why not?” and do it themselves.  After all, it’s not like the gamers are actually doing something to stop it.  I am.  I refuse to participate in it.  I won’t be paying game companies for DLC that is on the fucking disc!  I won’t be buying a game where I have to pay to be able to win it the way it wants.  I especially won’t be buying a game where you are having to fucking gamble to win.  That’s insulting to a sickening degree.

Here’s where I turn it over to you – why are you?  What could possibly compel you to play a game where you have to gamble and pay obscene amounts of your money in order to win?  “But Lucien, look at the gameplay!  It looks so cool!”  Is that really enough?  Does it having cool factor give you the confidence to spend your fucking money on it?!

I don’t know how to stop this.  The only truly effective method to stopping this is to not buy this stuff.  But I know that’s a fool’s errand.  Dumb-shit Star Wars fanboys will cum in their pants and buy it.  And fans of Shadow of Mordor will shell out their money because the first game was so good.  This is how they seem to do it.  Make a good first game, or in Battlefront’s case a decent first game, and then make a sequel that looks cooler so you can con them into this shit.  We have to vote with our wallets, people!  We cannot pay money into this!  Please tell me I’m not the only one who feels this way.  Please!  Unless people start voting with their wallets, it’s only going to get worse.

The thing I fear most is when games like The Last of Us, Part 2 and Insomniac’s Spider-Man start doing this stuff.  When I see games outside of the broken AAA market that is full of greedy corporations who now have a reputation for screwing their consumers left and right without their consumers ever giving enough of a shit to try and stop them.  And make no mistake, the more people do this, the worse it’s going to get.  Mark my fucking words.

Mark them.

Until next time, a quote,

“What would your favorite author say, Captain?  ‘Let us sit upon the ground and tell sad stories of the death of kings’?” – Gen Chang, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

Peace out,

Maverick

SIONR/Lucien’s First Take: Sky – Teaser Trailer (thatgamecompany)

My favorite Indie game of all time is Journey.  It was made by thatgamecompany.  They’re a company with a penchant for doing unorthodox things with the medium.  They prefer artistry and unique control schemes.  Whether it be the abstract yet undersea quality of flOw, the pure visual poetry that was Flower, or the absolute narrative and visual perfection that was Journey, this company has shown that they will take good concepts and run with them in strange ways.  I’ve been waiting to see what their next big game was going to be.  Well, the wait is over.  They’ve released a trailer.  Let’s take a look!

Alright, so we got this character who looks a lot like the hooded nameless character in Journey.  They seem infinitely more spry and happy than him.  Alright!  So where does this game take place?  You open up and see this massive island in the sky!  Oh hell yes!  The visuals on this game are a cut above. Our character glides down, and there are others!  Lots of others.  So I’m guessing a multiplayer component much like that in Journey, on this time with more people.  That’s cool.  It’s pretty clear that this game is taking a lot of cues from its predecessor, but that’s not at all a bad thing.  After all, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

They take off from a platform and we have flying mechanics!  Oh hell yes!  But the trailer’s over?!  That’s not cool!  I wanna see more!  They totally got me salivating.  Alright, let’s watch to the end and see if they have a release date.  Since this company has been pretty tight with Sony up ’til now, I’m not worried about being able to get it on my PS4.  So when will it be coming out?!

I’m sorry, maybe I didn’t see that right.  “Coming Soon to Apple iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV.”  Are you fucking kidding me?!  What the fuck is this shit?!  Not only are they making it exclusive, but it’s exclusive to shitty Apple products?  It’s not even specific to a console, but their shitty mobile products?!  What the fuck is this shit?!  I’m seeing articles by Polygon where they’re saying it will come to Apple first.  Where is the basis for first?  I looked on the website and on statements by the devs.  Everything points to this being exclusive to those outlets alone.  I’m not seeing anything about a wider release.  This is bullshit!

Look, I get the idea of exclusives.  I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’ll never get to play Cuphead on my PS4, even though it looks absolutely fantastic.  That’s just how it goes.  But why the fuck is it exclusive to this crap?  What if I don’t want to fork over the money for this?!  What if I don’t want to have to shell out hundreds of dollars for crappy Apple products to play a game from my favorite company?  I’m sure that Apple paid BIG dollars for this neat little scam.  Well fuck.  I guess I’m not going to get to play this game then.  Because I don’t want Apple’s overpriced devices or their fucking overpriced TV.

I’m kinda curious what happened between thatgamecompany and Sony.  They always seemed to be tight.  I wonder if there was a falling out.  Maybe Apple offered more money?  If that’s the case, then I bet my bottom dollar that the games they make for the foreseeable future will be exclusive to their mobile garbage too.  Well fuck you, Apple!  You won’t sucker me into buying your second-rate phones or TV that will break and I have to shell out even more money for a replacement.  Nope!  It genuinely hurts to see this be how my time with thatgamecompany ends.

Initial Verdict
Fuck Apple

Peace out,

Maverick

SIONR: ‘Lord of the Flies’ Female Remake

This is more of bookworm rage than nerdrage, but there is rage here.  I’m so goddamn tired of how everything is having to be remade for the SJW audience so they can say that it’s about equality.  Especially when it comes to adapting books that I genuinely think are good.  Why?  Because when I see some changes made to things, it just leaves me wondering – did you just not read the source material?!  Like the adaption of “The Golden Compass.”  That series was a straight-up middle finger to the Catholic church.  Phillip Pullman made no secret of how much he hates Catholicism and thinks the church is a corrupt aristocracy.  But the film had to turn it into some vague government entity.  No!  Did you not read the fucking book?!  It was very clear – the church is the one in control of that society.  Lord Asriel embodied a kind of protestant reformation.  Seeing the film gloss over that, along with all the other crap they fucked up, pissed me off.

Now I am seeing news about how there is a remake film of “Lord of the Flies.”  And they have an angle with this – instead of it being about a bunch of British boys being stranded on an island, it’s going to be about a bunch of girls being stranded on an island.  All the roles will be female.  Oh, fuck me!  Did you all not read the fucking book?!  The writers of this idea are saying that it’s not about equality, but I am calling bullshit right now.  This was done to cater to the SJW crowd.  And it pisses me off.

Here’s why this doesn’t work – whatever your opinions about identity, at our biological core there are two genders: male and female.  And our species is sexually dimorphic, by which I mean that our brains are wired differently.  Men and boys are wired with higher traits for aggression and the need to exert dominance.  We are more wired to see violence as a solution to problems.  In primitive societies, there has NEVER been an instance outside of mythology where the men in a society were exclusively the gatherers and the women exclusively the hunters.  There are societies where men and women tend to share duties, but never one where the roles are completely reversed.  It all goes back to biology.

Whatever your beliefs on personality identity, or how masculine or feminine your traits are, it’s a biological fact that men and women have different traits.  So, in “Lord of the Flies,” you have a bunch of boys trapped on an island.  The novel is about them trying to establish a society of rules, because they are proper British youth, but that government falls apart and the society devolves into tribal madness, which culminates in them killing a boy with spears.  Given the biology of boys, that makes sense.  The novel is a look at how the most upstanding and proper boys can become animals the moment they are removed from all semblance of order.  It’s a great examination of a contention the Joker had in The Dark Knight – “their morals, their code, it’s a bad joke.  Dropped at the first sign of trouble.”  It’s what makes it good.  The idea that us humans aren’t as removed from the animal kingdom as we might think.

I put it to you – the same thing wouldn’t happen with girls.  I can already hear people – just watch women in a group.  They’re catty and back-stab.  Sure, in an all-female society, things would get pretty cutthroat.  But the reality is that women’s minds are wired to seek coexistence rather than conflict.  They try to keep a familial unit intact.  Would there be infighting and crazy shit in a female version of this?  Sure.  But they wouldn’t take it to the extreme that the boys do.  Unless it was a situation where the food was gone and it was kill or be killed.  And even then, there would be those who would try and figure out an alternative.  We’re talking science here.

When will this bullshit end?  When will we stop getting the pro-equality versions of stuff?  I can’t even imagine what a remake to Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings films would be like.  Or To Kill a Mockingbird, especially in today’s racial culture.  Or the 1954 version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, one of my favorite films of all time.

A lot of people will say I just can’t stand things being changed in adaptation.  Fuck that noise!  My problem is when it doesn’t make sense in context of the original, or totally spits in the face of what the original was trying to do.  Great example – the American version of Death Note.  That movie fucking sucked.  Why?  Tons of reasons.  But for me, it’s the fact that the main character isn’t motivated by a twisted sense of justice.  It’s the fact that he wants to impress a girl.  A fucking girl!  All the diabolical intellect of Light Yagami replaced by the insipid bullshit of Light…Turner.  Fuck that name.  Can America just abandon making anime adaptations now?  Please?!

This movie is going to suck.  I can already see the Steve Shives’ and the feminist idiots lining up to cheer on and praise this film, when I guarantee not one of those pathetic idiots read the actual book.  Or if they did, they just wrote it off as misogyny or some dumb thing.  As for me, not even gonna watch this retardation.  Thankfully, lots of female bookworms are out against this too.  If CNN, who wears their bias for this crap as much on their sleeves as every other even-slightly left-leaning outlet, is willing to show off plenty of women who think this is stupid, then you know you fucked up.  Too bad I can already see the pathetic culture war that will follow.

Until next time, a quote,

“Sure, as long as the machines are working at you can dial 911.  But you take that away, you put people in the dark, you scare the shit out of them, no more rules, you’ll see how primitive they get.” – David, The Mist

Peace out,

Maverick

SIONR: Stop Complaining About How Short Season Seven of Game of Thrones Is

One of the biggest complaints I am seeing all over the Internet is as follows – “why is this season of Game of Thrones so short?!  Everything is so rushed!  Why can’t they take more time and get to know the characters more?  I mean, all Sam does is move the plot forward!  It’s boring!”  That may be a bit longer than I had thought, but I wanted to basically encapsulate all the complaints that I’m hearing in the same space.  Generally speaking, anyway.  And it’s frustrating.  Because it’s like people haven’t really been paying attention.

Here’s the thing – Game of Thrones is the most ambitious television series ever produced.  There isn’t a single comparison to be made, anywhere.  This series has done with no others have even attempted to do.  Because of that, they have had to make a lot of sacrifices.  There are a TON of plotlines from the books that are either distorted or outright gone.  Why?  Because they don’t have the time, or another crucial element that everyone who is bitching seems to forget about – money.  This series’ price tag has gotten astronomically-large.  A lot of critics have wondered if the series has gotten to the point that it’s too expensive to keep making.  A valid question.  So, when the lead writers said that they only have 13 episodes worth of plot, any normal person would wonder – why not have some filler stuff.  Little things where we take a break and get to know the characters more.  That’s smart.  The simple reality is that doing that takes more time and budget to shoot longer.

I understand how some people are a little annoyed.  Yeah, it’s weird how characters are able to traverse great distances in ye olde times with great speed.  But you know what I do?  I do that thing called critical thinking.  It’s a lost art in the age of conservative and liberal hand-wringing that eschews nuance completely.  How many episodes would they have needed to realistically have Greyworm get the Unsullied to Casterly Rock?  At least two or three.  They have to speed things up.  There isn’t enough plot left to fill in that kind of time.  So yes, Jon Snow made it from Winterfell to White Harbor and then to Dragonstone in the span of a single episode.  Hell, not even that.  The series has at least attempted to make the audience understand that there are weeks going between episodes, but that part has been admittedly clumsy.

And sure, there is a ton of stuff that I’d like to see.  Like, why didn’t Ghost go with Jon?  What a way to have them get to know each other.  Him being the father of a dire wolf with the mother of dragons?  That seems like a good way for them to bond.  I’ve missed Ghost.  He has barely been in the series since the very beginning of last season.  But then I remember – dire wolves have to be animated.  And that takes money.  Money that HBO unfortunately can’t spare.  We may never see Ghost again.  That will suck.  I hope he survives until the end.  There’s only one other dire wolf left.  Thankfully we did get to see that Nymeria is okay.  I’m really glad about that.  Not glad that Arya went back to Winterfell.  I thought her deal with seeing Nymeria and saying she doesn’t belong there anymore took it to mean that she doesn’t belong in Winterfell, so she was going to go south and finish her mission.  But nope.  Kinda disappointed with that.  Not gonna lie.

The point of all this rambling nonsense is that HBO has to do the best it can with what they’ve got.  They are out of plot and the budget just keeps growing.  They’re too invested in this to stop now, but the studio can’t let this series bankrupt them.  From a financial standpoint I understand their problems.  For all of us, it means that we get less show to watch.  But if what we see was like last night, with Drogon setting an entire army on fire, then yes, please, more of that.  I love the political stuff in the series the most, but I got a raging nerd hard-on for how cool that is.  Let’s enjoy how great this series is for as long as we can’t.  One more season, and that’s it.

Until next time, a quote,

“You can’t always get what you want.  But if you try sometimes, you get what you need.” – Lyrics by The Rolling Stones

Peace out,

Maverick