A quick blurb on freedom and some life’s blessings …

Yesterday, I wrote an article on how frustrated I’ve been in 2018 (well … building up for a while), but since last night, there have been a few, small reprieves with a LOT of weight:

The first one is coming home to family. I’m reminded that no matter how difficult life gets or how frustrating it may be to keep sanity, having a wonderful young person to care about is a powerful gift. For those without young ones, having a significant other or parent can be equally as rewarding.

The second reprieve was a visit from our missionaries. It wasn’t a “conversion” visit or some deeply spiritually influencing visit. No, it was about being friends, talking about life, and remembering that no matter how far down the ladder we slide, it is our friends reaching down to catch us that can help pull us back up. Sometimes it means leaving behind video games and television for something real … and that’s a gift unto itself.

The third happened this morning. During the power outage, there was no news media (which, stepping away from electronics, media, and the “things” of the world is its own reward). No news media means no chaos or drama about a bunch of political garbage and scandals meant to make me infuriated. Without that infuriating blast of news media I was able to take a breather from all the crud and read a couple of articles and past posts on the Daily Signal and Youtube, and follow up accordingly. And, it was nice. I “felt” more clear, and was reminded that stepping out of the chaos and drama, coming up for air, is necessary, from time to time, to keep breathing … to keep living … and to keep sane!

Finally, I accidentally stumbled across a video that I thought was rather … profound (for me). Now, i’s not a “new” video, or even a widely watched video with millions of views like most of Youtube’s stupid videos. But, it is an important video – and it should be watched, more. Penn and Teller, two of entertainment media’s most enjoyable presenters (from my simple perspective), addressed a very important political issue regarding freedom. And, they reminded me of the importance of stepping back and looking at life with a clear head, remembering to smile and enjoy the family and friends I have, and to breath. It was kind of a culmination of everything else by two people who think clearly, speak well, and are reasonable folks who are shockingly level headed in a liberal entertainment world (reminding me to not be judgemental and keep my own self in check). So, I thought I would share it with you – in case you’re here.

I’ll end with this … so I hope you enjoy. Thanks for reading.

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Frustration, 2018

This has been a terribly frustrating and frankly, very difficult past 3 – 4 years to resolve emotionally. What about, you?

In a time when filibustering is literally screwing the masses:

(You can see that in a majority Republican state by the masses, that the so-called “representative” democracy – DOESN’T work since the ENTIRE state went to Clinton – even though 90% of the state went to Trump and the Democrat vote – was SPLIT UP – where population is not equally balanced as the “less important” counties include the biggest land-owners and ONE county, with two universities and people who are not even residents, get to be the majority vote)

In a time when the self-righteous schmucks of humanity get to influence leadership:

(This is where the sh@thole of Oregon … I mean, the “City of Bend”, passed a law to support affordable housing (because otherwise, the prices were in the $1400’s and up and people were being left homeless left and right), by removing obstacles and taxes for real estate developers to come into town and start building. What? No control, incentives, or reason? Don’t be silly … the council also gave themselves a raise based on the increased real estate business in town and look at the prices now … $1400’s and up. Confused. Don’t worry, nobody in town actually believed the council was going to do ANYTHING to help the people who lived there and would continue to collapse the local economy … like the kid who sued to get on the council lacking both experience and NOT EVEN LIVING in the City. Yes, Bend is the biggest little embarrassment in HISTORY!)

In a time when the wealthy and poor are feuding and the poor are being DUMPED on:

(See this? This is what a town looks like when the rich people live on the West, and have started to move into the northeast – and the poor have been driven into a corner, and suddenly, the City Council gets a raise because the “people” wanted it”. Guess who’s getting their roads re-surfaced, while the poor literally have roads that dead end into dirt roads – and NEXT TO SCHOOLS NO LESS? Yeah, you guessed it … the rich guys on the West side! That’s who! Screw those poor people … oh … yeah … this was filibustering at it’s best, AND, you guessed it … the council members – live on the West side!)

In a time where running an animal for City Mayor makes more sense than people:

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(Yep, that’s right! This cute ball of aggravated furry, human enslavement demanding, egomaniac, feline authoritarian is being run for the mayor because the citizens, who “supposedly” voted at 64% for the city council and mayor to get a raise, are so overwhelmingly tired of the crushing arrogance of their city council that it has become worthless to try for ANYTHING that even remotely resembles NORMAL!?!)

In a time, when four dams are about to be removed with the EPA’s assurance: Hey — just because it will kill EVERYTHING for two years, don’t worry, it will make it all better:

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(And, no – I wasn’t joking about the statement above … that is the LITERAL testimony. But, if you listen to idiots like this guy, who operates half-cocked to begin with and then gets a spoon full of rainbows and changes his mind “overnight” … all is good with the world. You see, the problem is that water can’t pass through the dams. No … really … look at the picture above … now … forget about all of the water passing through the dam … and *poof*, see the problem? Sure, we could just cut a hole in the dam, preserve the infrastructure, and not dump millions of tons of heavy-metal laden debris into already shallow rivers, but where’s the fun in that? All that would do is save the taxpayers BILLIONS (yes – BILLIONS overnight tacked on to those low-income / high rent suffering taxpayers), preserve infrastructure, and NOT kill EVERY living plant and animal species. But … this is about the environment and protecting fish! So … um … don’t be ignorant … or uhh … don’t worry … the EPA says it’s okay. Of course, they also said that the North Unit Irrigation District could dump uncontrolled amounts of acrolein into irrigation canals, where water goes on crops in one of the WORLD’S top 27 agricultural distributors, that flows into protected native land waters … because acrolein isn’t a problem … I mean … just because it is BANNED from nuclear toxic waste sites because it is TOO LETHAL … and has poisoned ENTIRE CITIES from just airborne exposure and is the deadly chemical from cigarette smoke inhalation … just sit back, relax, and enjoy … everything’s going to be just fine … thank goodness Multnomah county controls all of Oregon and keeps voting in the Dems who support these wonderful environmental measures … But, hey – studies conducted NINE years ago before there were any other dams being removed were “pretty sure” everything would be fine. And, now, the EPA refers to all those other dams being removed .. although … this WILL be the largest dam removal in HISTORY and there is NO PRECEDENT upon which to assume things will go well and a LOT to say it will be bad … but hey … who has time to care about water, right? After all .. it’s like 10,000 pages of documentation. Nobody read Obama’s 3000 page health care plan and that went great … right?)

In a time when a group of strong, community-oriented citizens come together to build-up their community by getting rid of the “dirty” poor people and ravishing tax payer dollars for profiteering scams:

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(Before you judge these hard-working citizens, you just remember that the bald guy, who supported the property manager who THREATENED to evict EVERY tenant with limited notice if the City even considered giving tenants a 90-day move notice because he’s a landlord too … and some of us wrote them letters telling them that putting property managers in charge of supporting low-income housing was STUPID – you just remember – it’s not about the “people”. It’s about who’s on top. And, before you judge these professionals who care about their community, you just remember that the property tax increase (that’s going to increase the rental rates on those “dirty” poor people), is for the better – because it WILL build new hotels! Because, in a town of 175,000 people – 38 hotels JUST ISN’T ENOUGH! In a town with a major parking problem in its downtown area – putting up a parking garage vs. giving the taxpayer dollars for a new hotel is just STUPID! And, why shouldn’t we have more hotels next to a hospital? Isn’t that what hospitals are for? Because, out of the hundred million dollars (or so) that’s going to encourage wealthy, new hotels, at LEAST $200,000 goes to supporting the local beer bike, the pet parade, and the gay pride parade – all fun for the whole family! I mean … when the hotels SUED the city for trying to use money to fix the roads … the people learned a valuable lesson about fiscal responsibility and indentured servitude to corporate America! Yeah … that happened. Don’t worry though – the council has raised the taxes on hotels so they get more money … wait … isn’t that promoting a profiteering of sorts? Nah … just remember … dirty people … like the NATIONALLY acclaimed Jay Leno laughed about because of this small sh#thole town … I mean “small community”, will be the ones who get the boot!)

In a time where social inequality has been solved by 125 MILLION kids becoming gambling-addicted to one-on-one KILLING of real people in video games:

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(Yes, fans of video gaming who grew up with more time on 80’s television, MTV, and video games than other human beings … the social malfunction of social dysfunction and belonging (that I CLEARLY POINTED OUT IN THIS ARTICLE QUITE A WHILE AGO …. along with other articles), has grown up! I mean … how bad were video games, really? We’re all doing great, right? A country divided, divorce rates at their maximum, churches falling apart, gender identity is a “thing”, and the news media is so rampant with feces that it stinks just to see the news listed on the online guide – but what could that have to do with a nation of anti-social video gamers and television watchers who retreated from humanity as children? Yeah, turning over society to media streaming was a BRILLIANT idea. But, instead of going columbine anymore – now kids can go online columbine! Oh … no wait … they’re still shooting each other in “RL”, too (not to mention #$%#@ who actually made child-murdering recreation simulators before the bodies were even buried … for REAL! … like that awesome “Bully” game …). But, hey, just ’cause I sent in papers to the APA 10 years ago warning about this and was called stupid …  is no reason to believe me or sympathize. And, just because it’s suddenly becoming apparent to somehow previously ignorant BILLIONS that this is a gigantic problem … is no reason to worry. And, just ’cause the world is in this screwed up mode and has let it go SO FAR that we allowed media to literally infiltrate our lives and not be able to function without it so that EVERY home has kids screwing up their brains … is no reason to keep doing things like “reading” – so turn away now and go back to your news media and commercials because everything is okay. It’s just … okay. No, really, teaching 125 million children to master military tactics in group scenarios to murder one another for a king of the hill position is not a problem. Just … don’t think about it. Think about kittens … rainbows … and ignore that dirt road ahead that’s about to screw up your axles because the rich people are getting their roads re-paved …)

In a time when Democracy is decided by 12% of the people:

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(Remember that map from before? Yeah … filibustering allowed just over 12% of the entire state’s population … all centered in ONE county, supposedly (just forget the fact that the state has 4 million people), to vote in Kate Brown … one of Oregon’s worst governors in history! Think that’s just a “crazy” statement? Maybe so … but I’m just one of those people who think a State budget of TWENTY TWO BILLION DOLLARS (the “unfunded portion … not counting the existing cost), is … oh … I dunno … FRICKING OUTRAGEOUSLY STUPIDLY MORONIC! Now, I get it – California has a bigger budget, “per person”, than Oregon. But … considering that the State’s legislation is selling an OLD GROWTH FOREST of 82,500 acres for a whopping $200 million – to A TIMBER COMPANY – KILLING ONE OF OREGON’S LARGEST AND OLDEST FORESTS (well, except for the 25% that crosses native lands … they’ll knock that out themselves) – WHAT THE HOLY #$%#^%@#????? I mean … the State BLOCKED Nestle from tapping Opal Springs and killing one of the nation’s few and most untainted water sources EVER … but selling off the last of the forests?? Well … big surprise. They’re okay with wiping out 400 miles of all aquatic living species south of the dams …)

In a time, when a tiny State like Oregon has a BIGGER prison population than California:

(Per capita, Oregon has a 120% BIGGER prison population, per person, than California. We are not talking a state where 30 million people have been shoved into a tiny spot like L.A., literally promoting problems. We’re talking a state so spread out that one county controls the entire state’s vote! But, hey – mass surveillance and more law enforcement is a good thing, right? It’s also okay if they spy on innocent people while presumably “only” looking for “suspected” people … right? But, don’t worry – too much. Some state legislatures are fighting against it … but all they have to do is compromise enough to let cops claim “suspect”. It’s not like there are innocent people in prison just because law enforcement still uses bad science and assumptions, right? So … you just go on big brother government … that’s what Americans want … is to be part of a police state … because law enforcement should be more like law “forced all the time-ment and watching you because you are guilty – no matter what”, am I right? Give me a holla back!)

In a time when robots will save humanity because … humanity’s inefficient and needs replaced:

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(Don’t you worry little bear … machines are our friends. Just ’cause an automated system set off nuclear reactors in Japan and murdered millions of people in toxic radioactive outfall is not cause for alarm … we’re in control. Just ’cause AI’s serve big corporations and answer to the most deviant and manipulative #$%#@#%# in history, you know, the people who have shown a propensity to openly abuse even children for profit, is no reason to think that the machines are being built for anything but good. I mean … don’t worry! After all, Microsoft researchers have assured us everything will be just fine … just fine … just fine …. just fine … oops … sorry .. have to reboot Windows again … there we go! Just ’cause a billionaire mogul who is pioneering human advancement into space thinks that building skynet is probably “not” a good idea, is just poppycock!)

– – –

In a time when all these things are happening – I am a little frustrated.

I feel a little helpless … a little overwhelmed … and a lot isolated. I feel as though my voice falls on deaf ears and no one ever hears the screams until it’s too late – and it’s usually their own screams that wake them up. It’s not like history has ever shown examples where people stood by and did nothing as tyranny rose up from the darkness in the form of megalomaniacs and murderous leaders, like Attila the Hun, Caligula, Hitler, Pharisees … you know … nothing like that. It’s not like there are huge amounts of slavery going on. Just because the historical, scientific, and ideological transition in the past 30 years transcends the past 4,000 in an epic movement that has introduced more psychological damage and neurological disorders than recorded in all of history, isn’t troubling, right?

Oh …maybe you were expecting an article on the fake news? The Presidential / secret service / fighting celebrity scandals that dominate the airwaves? Maybe a discussion on how special interest groups are crushing the souls of good human beings at the Congressional level or religions are being ripped apart by self-righteously entitled people or countries are affecting each others elections or megalomaniacs building nuclear weapons or the rain forests literally being wiped out, or …?

I know … I left out the part about how kids are standing in line behind a leader to stop the propagation of guns, fully unaware that their “leader” was getting a book and movie deal, standing on the backs of dead children, before their bodies were even cold (and yes – I twittered that on young Hogg’s account before the media caught wind of it and guess what? No response!). Maybe you were expecting another article about how science is so MIND-NUMBINGLY single-minded and ignorant that they have set America at the very END of global scientific progress since 2010? Maybe I could have once again addressed Hollywood’s assault on the state of human thought and having any level of moral fortitude?

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No … those are just the “bigger” topics I usually write about just to keep the focus on “relevance” … because if something’s not “relevant” to the masses … allowing you to “fit in” with a social group (filling that hierarchy), it goes unnoticed. But, this is the world as it is – not as it should be. Unfortunately, bigger issues cause us to lose focus on little issues – and before we know what’s happening, it trickles into our communities, our homes, our back yards … families … and the very fabric of our lives. Just because the news media is hell bent on destroying the hearts and minds of Americans doesn’t necessarily mean they win. But, when smaller governments learn to abuse that same campaign strategy – we get City Council’s that actively promote their “$200,000” community outreach programs, starving the Tower Theater and Les Schwab Amphitheaters (their ONLY star attractions that bring big names in) – while not saying ANYTHING about their “online” campaign for the citizens to comment on the roads … and *poof* – they run out of money to shovel snow, but have enough to repave rich people-hill for the 20th year in a row!

There are SO many things building that’s it’s becoming a virtual wall that cannot be overcome. I can go on about things like the gay pride parade that is the OPPOSITE of pride and hurts the LGBTQ community; the stupidity of current business economic models forgetting what made them famous and why they’re failing at the cost of consumers; the rip-off scandal of American economics; Hollywood’s stupid; the fact that actresses and corporations can literally screw over and hurt innocent people, apologize, and move on and somehow – it’s all okay; and so on …. It’s like standing in a room packed wall to wall with people, watching a comet coming and screaming for everyone to run – but NO ONE is listening. I literally have to fight back not crying. I know … it doesn’t involve me. It is not my problem to deal with and the only thing in life that I can control is myself.

– – –

But …

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Life’s full of a few good things still … why can’t we enjoy that and always gotta be in such a hurry? (Dang … desert sand is HOT … ouch ouch ouch ouch) (credit)

Sometimes it feels like we are all living to work … or to serve some malformed deviancy, while living in a subservient state and missing out on life. We are all living in a world where the so-called people in charge are literally destroying our planet and our minds – and we’re supposed to do nothing about it?

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How do you fight back when the authorities are watching every word you say and randomly deciding you are guilty – and you will go to jail – even if you’re innocent (not all authorities, by the way – there are still a LOT of good cops out there … and frankly, I am really grateful they are still there)? How do you make a difference when you can’t vote out corruption because filibustering has put the power somewhere else? How do you stop rampant waste and taxation into poverty from making children and families homeless when corporations are working with your leaders to literally STEAL your money – and THEY make the laws and have the power? Where do you go in the world when a global social disorder has infiltrated every part of humanity? How do you influence and help stop a potential artificial machine infiltration that could cause a massive outfall of catastrophic proportions when you live to work and the corporations that have gained anti-trust violating control – literally keep you there and stop American education progress?

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How do you get companies and government agencies to stop poisoning and destroying rivers, bees, forests, the air, and literally wiping out the planet – when they have the money, you can’t vote them out, and the most powerful influences in Hollwood are sold out to some machine that they believe is good … not bothering to look at who’s behind the curtain?

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Beware what’s behind the “invisible” force pushing us forward – because it doesn’t seem to be making the world too nice a place … whatever “it” is.

How do you try to just live each day and enjoy what you have … knowing that somewhere a child is starving? How do you live free when you have to be in fear because it could be you who are that innocent person in prison? How do you tell the government not to tear out the dams because the multi-billion dollar utility is using it as a scam to push through their agenda to actually END clean energy, screw the people, and make money, when their boss, Warren Buffet, has been secretly pulling the strings to destroy clean energy while pretending to be the smiling face of a man who wants to make the world a better place? (And he’s willing to murder any amount of animals, creatures, and people to manipulate the system into doing this and has the money and the influence … and corrupt politicians listen to lobbyists – not people?).

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Even the most self-serving and cruel creatures of Star Trek’s universe couldn’t understand what kind of species radiates its own planet …

How do you raise your kids without cynicism and frustration so that they don’t become a part of this paradigm downshift?

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What if you saw an innocent person standing in front of an oncoming train and you felt like you were the only one who could see it – but could do nothing about it? Could you just let that go? Could you be so psychopathic as to shut yourself down, turn away, and smile like all was well with the world? Because, if you can … or if you’re forced to … then every time that happens …

  • A little piece of you dies. It is crushed beneath the weight of of its own helplessness.
  • A little piece of your heart shuts down … and it’s that much less of you to be hurt, but it’s also that much less of you to love.

Where’s the Doctor when you need him?

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I’ll be looking, Doctor … Rose City Comicon 2018 – be there!

It has been a frustrating … not just the past few years, but all of this. It’s just the past couple of years that society has banned together in some giant hate machine that is compounding the frustration, 2018.

Hope is waiting on some unseen “thing”, that will change what “is.” But, it’s hard to see hope at the center of the downward spiral …

Anyway … sorry to go on so long. Hope I didn’t bum you out. How are you taking all of this? Have you just shut it out, closing your emotions, and running on that self-serving psycopathic bandwagon of ignoring suffering? Did you find a way out of it? Are you, happy? Do you even know what happiness really looks like?

I hope so …

You deserve it!

Now … go eat an ice cream or something super yummy and delicious and live for that moment … savor it … and hold on to it ’cause all of this … will still be here when you’re done …

Thanks for reading.


We have to know pain in order to understand joy. That’s why we’re born into the world through pain – so we can be smiling, happy babies. It’s just too bad that it’s not enough …” – Me

 

 

Where all the good boys, go …

So – my son came across this post in Imgur: “Right in the feels“. And, to its credit (as I otherwise hate everything social media / imgurian / twitterian, etc.), it gets you, right in the “feels”. I rarely post other peoples’ work, but this was a writing prompt / response that I felt was very worthy of it. So, if you like it, please be sure to log into Imgur and give the writers the credit (Epidexipteryx for the prompt, and Euthenios for the wonderful story – original Reddit post is here). Thank you.

Meanwhile, here it is, for those who know what a real, good boy is (I tried to clean up / formalize the writing without changing any of the context):


Where the good boys, go …

 – by Euthenios


When a beloved dog passes in the hereafter, they are given a choice: They can cross the rainbow bridge and await their owners, or join the sleepless watch and defend the world from evil spirits …

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… the last thing I remember is my person bringing me to the sharp place. I never understood why my person would bring me to the sharp place. The smells were sharp, and they poked me with sharp things. That’s why I called it the sharp place. It was a bad place. I didn’t like it.

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I don’t know why my person brought me there, that day of all days. I already hadn’t been feeling good. I’d been throwing up, and my hips hurt and my paws hurt. Even eating grass didn’t help. And, then my person brought me to the sharp place. I tried to be mad at him, but he seemed so sad about something, so I tried to wag my tail to cheer him up. I didn’t even really notice when the sharp man poked me.

Then my eyes got heavy and that was the last thing I remember …

“Buddy …” a voice said.

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“Buddy … wake up,” a voice said.

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I opened my eyes and got to my feet and I realized my paws didn’t hurt anymore. I tried a wag, and that was fine, too. I sniffed the air. It smelled like the play park and like our home and the car window. I liked it a lot.

“Welcome, Buddy …” came the voice from behind me.

I turned around and there was a person there. He wasn’t my person, but he was all safe and good smells, so I trusted him.

I asked, “Where am I?”

“You’re in the place that good boys, go,” the person said.

“I was a good boy?”

“You were a very good boy,” he told me.

That was good. I always tried to be a good boy. I asked, “Where’s my person?”

“He’s still down there,” the person said. And, he waved his arm and all of a sudden we were in our home and my person was sitting on the forbidden chair and looking sad. Every so often, he’d look over at the okay couch where I was allowed to sit, and his breath would catch because he was very sad. I tried to nuzzle him, but my nose just passed through his hand.

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“What’s happening? I don’t understand,” I said.

The person sighed, “You can’t be with him right now, buddy. I’m sorry, it’s the way of things.”

I thought about this for a while. I asked, “So, it’s like my person is on the person bed and I’m not allowed there?”

“Exactly like that,” the person said. “But, he can be with you someday, if you choose to wait for him.”

“Of course, I want to wait for him,” I said! Not wait for my person? Who did this person think he was talking to?

“Hold on, Buddy,” the person said. He seemed sad about this for some reason. “It’s not that simple. You have a choice.” He got down on one knee and he looked into my eyes, “There are bad things in this world, buddy. Very bad things.”

“Like neighbor cat?”

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“So much worse than her, buddy.” He waved his hand, and I saw what he was talking about. He showed me dark things that were like snakes and rats, only worse. Worse than the sucking machine. Worse than the sharp place.

They smelled … evil …

 

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“These are the things that want to hurt him, buddy. They want to hurt everybody. So you can wait for him, or you can keep him safe. But, if you choose to keep him safe … then you can’t see him again.”

I asked, “What, never?”

The person nodded, “Never, buddy. I’m sorry. Those are the rules. It’s a terrible choice.”

I looked at my paws. I didn’t want to not see my person ever again. But, I wanted to keep him safe even more.

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“I know what I have to do,” I said, and the person waved his hand and all of a sudden we were in a place where there were as many dogs as I have ever seen before!

More, even!!

“These are all the good boys who chose to keep their people safe,” the person said.

I looked at them all. I still couldn’t believe it. “But, there’s so many of us,” I said. “How many good boys are here?”

The person looked down at me.

He smiled, but I could tell he was also partly very sad.

“All of you, buddy. Every single one.”

 

Dog at sea.
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*Wipes tears from eyes … mumbles something about stupid imgur … stupid sad posts … *

Thanks for reading.


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Movie Review: Jurassic World, Fallen Kingdom – the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (Spoilers!)

THE GBU SCORE FOR JURASSIC WORLD: 4.5 out of 10

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Well, for Jurassic park fans, the Jurassic World movie brought an end to a 25-year wait since the first movie. However, Jurassic World, Fallen Kingdom, brought a whole new level of bad, to the series. While the movie may have topped box offices, it was most likely that movie goers went under the pretense that they were going to stick with the Jurassic Park story and not drop into excessively deep levels of darkness and despair. The Rotten Tomato score (of which I typically give VERY LITTLE credibility to), after the opening weekend, for this movie was 50%, and supporting that was an audience rating of only 61%. This time around, Rotten Tomatoes is right on. In my opinion, the Fallen Kingdom was a perfect example of how franchises die, or at the least, disappear for 20 years.

Was it worth the watch? In IMAX, this movie may have been worth it given the epic and beautiful scenes, the vivid music, and all the action, but I certainly am not paying double vs. the non-IMAX (especially for a bad movie). I would NOT take children under 16 to see this movie because it introduces a level of desensitization that is completely inappropriate (and the moral message is no different than any other Jurassic Park movie – although in this one, they’re confused). I would NOT take my family to go see this because frankly, it is just so blatantly brutal that as animal lovers, this was extremely hard to sit through. If you like dinosaurs on a big screen and are okay with watching human depravity, then this movie is worth the watch. If you were looking for a ‘real’ Jurassic Park sequel – then you may want to wait until it’s on Netflix.

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“Oh, look, a lunch box … ” 🙂 – I would have reached out and touched his nose …

I will say, however, that sitting in the top row at a Regal Cinema, in a regular Dolby: Atmos theater, while the two staff left to clean up the theater did a pretty good job, it was clear that Regal was doing little to maintain their theater. Although most directors don’t film for Dolby: Atmos and a lot of surround sound audio quality opportunities are lost, it was more the cramped seating, smell of stale beer, and sticky surfaces everywhere that made the theater experience – suck. Still, for $12.20 per person vs. $27.50 per person, the “fake” IMAX experience is NOT worth the cost. The IMAX screens are bigger, but not curved. IMAX 3D can make following the action more difficult with the rapidly moving objects and 3D glasses (which is a distraction), and the audio is limited to two, oversized and cruddy speakers. Personally, paying $27.50 and not getting the luxury seats, having a sticky theater, watching a terrible IMAX rip-off, and basically paying more money so that I can pay more money in the lobby for snacks is not a “premiere” movie experience (justifying the non IMAX version). But, that’s just me. Now, on to the reviews!

The Good

The visuals: First off, the Jurassic Park movies have continuously improved their graphics and realism having learned one of Hollywood’s biggest secrets (that apparently, so many other directors just don’t seem to know about): REAL is better. Therefore, expect animatronics, puppeteering, big movie sets, and a lot of hard working actors mixed in with some amazing CGI. Visually, the movie is as stunning as any other. It is difficult, understandably, to create as “stunning” of a visual as the first time we saw a Jurassic Park dinosaur, but knowing this, the director, J.A. Boyena, maintained what I saw, on a regular screen, as high quality production, excellent visuals, and a stunning presentation (even including a couple fun “jump in your seat” moments – even when it was expected)! I give the graphics a 10 out of 10 (I honestly believe there were few to no opportunities missed).

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The audio levels, quality, and distribution of sound was great! But, with this “new” soundtrack, I was not so pleased. I mean, c’mon – Harry Potter had the same intro for 8 movies (with minor variations), and that is what kept fans coming! However, at the very end, they snuck in that original Jurassic Park theme and at least reminded us about why we were there! So, with an unnecessary complete revamp of the soundtrack (except to really emphasize this is NOT a Jurassic Park movie), missing two, key opportunities to play the original music, but a brief glimpse of it at the end, I would give this a 7 out of 10. That said, let me step back and say that WOW – throughout the movie, the music build-ups, silences, and timed sequences were excellent. The sad, heart-wrenching scenes were so in line with the music that it could not be better (and in fact, I almost walked out … but we’ll get into that …). The action and suspense music, like when Claire Dearing (played by Bryce Howard), Franklin Webb (played by Justice Smith), and Owen Grady (played by Chris Pratt), were underwater, was perfectly fitting. For this, I bring the audio back up to a 9 out of 10.

The directing / story line were … well … not so great. Don’t misunderstand, as a stand-alone movie, without knowing about Jurassic Park, this was “okay”. As part of the franchise – this deviated too far. In fact, I am not even going to rate this in the “Good” category. I will just add, though, that there were a few good scares and a LOT of intensity throughout the movie – major intensity! So, if you like that, this may be a movie for you.

As far as actors go, Claire, Franklin, and Owen were the primary players and did a great job. There was little to no character development with the others that even warranted a review. So, ignoring all the other actors, for the top 3, I would give a 7 out of 10.

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Bonus Score: The Dinosaurs! One of the elements we love about Jurassic Park are its dinosaurs. From the terrifying to lovable, the dinosaurs were fantastic. They included a couple extras with additional screen time and it made the story fun, kept the story line going, and was well worth it. They missed opportunities with the T-Rex and could have left us with two, velociraptors, but otherwise, this is worth an 8 out of 10. Additionally, they gave homage to the first movie. Just like all good Jurassic Park movies, we started out on the island, with people who don’t belong there, and a dinosaur induced MDK! Whereas Jurassic World used the Ian Malcolm / flare / T-Rex scene, the Fallen Kingdom used the little girl trying to pull the lid down on the cupboard while the bad-o-saurus was running at her. It was just as suspenseful as the first movie and was a great addition, bringing the bonus score up to a 9 out of 10.

The Bad

Okay, let’s start at the most obvious: The Dinosaur Story. Jurassic Park has a “theme” to it that was at the core of the first and fourth movie’s success, but was lost in movies 2, 3, and now, 5: The Fallen Kingdom. That core is the focus on Dinosaurs as the heart of this franchise. No one is buying Ian Malcolm dolls … kids want dinosaurs! However, Jurassic World, Fallen Kingdom, moved away from the primary core to something so dark and deviant that I literally stood up to walk out. Had it not been for a very close friend, I would not have made it past the first 30 – 45 minutes of this movie. Because, as we all know, the “real” monster in Jurassic Park is not the carnivores just doing what carnivores do, it’s people. The real villain in these types of movies is always the people. While the original movie’s website had some very dark (and I do mean “dissolve the unpopular dinosaurs in acid to hide what was happening”, dark), this movie just came right out and threw it in our face. No longer was it the struggle of the dinosaurs against mankind’s need to control – it was just a brutal slaughter.

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For example, once the audience was 100% on board with knowing that they were going to let the dinosaurs die, the end scene for Isla Nubar was drug out for a LONG time – and it was absolutely gratuitous. From watching the Brachiosaurus sinking helplessly to the bottom of the ocean to the poor triceratops trying desperately to tread water – it sucked. But – that wasn’t enough. Even the carnivore that attacked Clair and Franklin was trapped inside a building where he would be burned alive by a pool of lava. But, as if that “non-visual” was not enough, suddenly we see the three heroes looking back at the island while a lone, terrified, and helpless Brachiosaur (a peaceful dinosaur that is VERY easy to fall in love with), cried to them for help. They could have helped. They could have saved him. But, instead, I just watched in tears as the dinosaur, trapped between molten lava and the ocean, disappeared, screaming for help (over and over and over again), in the smoke of the lava.

WHY? What in the HOLY hamburgers name did that serve? I already HATED the bad guy for ripping out a tooth from a sweet and innocent anklyosaurus. Was there any benefit, or pleasure, or reason, to watch the last of Isla Nubars’ dinosaurs die in extended, excruciating pain? But, let’s not stop there, shall we? Shoot blue – crap. Create another engineered, monster / weapon dinosaur – crap. Gassing the dinosaurs to death and making us watch it – crap. And so on – and so on. It’s like watching the first two seasons of the Walking Dead, and then sitting through the decline as the show moves further and further away from zombies and more toward how terrible human beings are. There has been no shortage of bad guys in the Jurassic Park franchise – but this – went way, too far, in my opinion, to be more about bad people, than about dinosaurs. I came to see dinosaurs (knowing a few might get hurt in the process) – not a brutal slaughter. So, a 2 out of 10 for this.

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While this was a cool scene … I think there’s supposed to be a message here? Old world vs. new world animal leadership? T-Rex’s can be like lions in a zoo? Alpha males butt heads no matter the size? Maybe ol’ “Rexy” isn’t too brilliant, finding her first taste of freedom … at a zoo? It’s safer to be the folks in the skycar far in the background rather than visit the lion’s cage close up? Hmm … maybe it was just meant for kicks. Too bad they couldn’t put that level of simplicity in the story telling!

The story line – general: Apparently, Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum), “has” to be in every Jurassic movie he can. This time, they used him as a pointless beginning and ending exposition (aka “malcomposition”), that was absolutely senseless. It was a time filler and very uninteresting. The beginning of the story was overly rushed, as was the introduction of Owen, taking away from any “investment” the audience could have. The original Jurassic Park movie was the only one brave enough to slowly lead into the main story, giving us something to hold onto. This franchise, in the ever-growing Hollywood trend, is just assuming that you’ve seen the past movies, so they’re too lazy to introduce old, or heck, even new characters, and they throw everything in haphazardly. This is BAD storytelling and the type of behavior that hurts a franchise (and one of the reasons that “sequels” are not viewed as well as originals. And, what’s the big takeaway? That we have to learn to live with dinosaurs now that they’re back! (Okay … that’s now 25 years old). Oh, maybe it’s about dinosaurs loose in the City? No … they’ve already done that. The dinosaurs have to be captured and freed from evil men? Nope … been there, too. Hollywood … if you’re going to invest in a good actor like Chris Pratt, put in so many beautiful cinematic shots, and include amazing animatronics and graphics – why let a movie die at the story line? That is just plain stupid. So, for a story that was interesting, but failed to engage, a 5 out of 10.

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Now this, is Jurassic Park funny … (unless you’re a surfer …)

The Directing: As of my review of Deadpool 2, I am NO LONGER giving allowances for newbie directors on major films or franchise movies. This crap has gone on for far, too long. J.A. Bayona? Who is this? Has he done a Jurassic movie? No. Up until 2009, he did video shorts. He’s born in Spain and does foreign films – but given that he’s my age, I have ZERO sympathy for his mismanagement of this movie. He was old enough to see the first movie in theaters. Literally, his “only” two “movies” of record are “The Impossible”, and “A Monster Calls”, neither of which were big winners. So, why did a movie that cost SO darn much money and require SO much massively extensive and complex filming involve a director who is literally fresh out of the box? Money saving was NOT the way to go. But, Hollywood is getting cheap, fast. Shorter seasons for television shows, less expensive directors, CGI films vs. animatronics – where does it end? Anyway, the directing was, for the “landscape” shots, well done. For the action shots, there were a few good scenes (like following the bad dinosaur down as he unlocked the bedroom door and entered in what was presented to be a “nightmare” sequence”, which I especially liked). He did well capturing the death of the Brachiosaur on Isla Nubar – but I’ll be damned if I am going to give credit for that … okay … fine … it was SO well done that I stood up to leave. That’s how GREAT that scene was filmed, whether I liked it or not. But, the fast camera switching, not capturing the scene well when the dinosaurs were being gassed, and so on – was evidence of his lack of experience. So, for this, a 4 out of 10 (it would have at least been a 6 if it wasn’t for being a newbie on a film that required experience).

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Believe me – I have been generous to this movie. Look at all the beautiful creatures – now watch them die. Yay … aren’t you glad you brought your children? Not to mention the scientific inaccuracies with the island that are so blatantly bad, even Erik Klemetti at Discover Magazine had to make a few reality checks!

Character Intros: One thing the director did do right, was like so many other Jurassic Park sequels, was to throw in a bunch of random, new characters, and fail to give them any depth. We have a cloned grand daughter whose story was so, potentially incredible, that … that … oh what, nothing? We have a chance to take the original girl from Jurassic Park and make her the mother of the grand daughter (as Benjamin Lockwood (played by the amazing James Crowell, albeit a waste of his talent), said that the mother had been on the original island), but nope. It’s a random, nobody?? The quickly eaten bad guy – well – that’s “Jurassic Park” “ish”, but could have been developed as a meaningful character, like Nedry, from the awesome, first movie. I will give a +2 for including a Systems Analyst, as that happens to be my profession, although I am taking away 1 of those points for failing to fully develop the character, properly show what a systems analyst does, making us look athletic when we are not, stereotyping us as not being American, and for having the character disappear half way through the movie for “convenience / get out of the way for the main characters / get out of the way to introduce other characters because it’s too much for the writers”, only to reappear?? For this, a 7 out of 10.

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This scene is both epic and a failure. It is epic the way the director turned this into a “nightmare” sequence, giving us that eerie effect. It was stupid that the girl ran to her bed when she was clearly very clever, and even worse, it took the entire “higher” intelligence of dinosaurs that deserve to be saved and tried to make it that dinosaurs could also be evil in a juxtaposition that just doesn’t work.

Confused Writers: So, there’s a point in the movie when the bad guy tries to make Claire responsible for his bad decisions? WHAT THE FLIP!!!??? Worse, after Claire is sure that she’s responsible, then somehow Owen is responsible. Did they ever consider that some a$$wipe of a human being might come along and try to use the dinosaurs in a bad way? YES – YES THEY DID. HOWEVER – these people TRIED to believe in the best of humanity. These people TRIED to believe they were doing something to make a difference AFTER things were already bad due to human error. Now, we [the audience] are supposed to somehow see their dilemma and understand their genocidal need to make things right again? NO! There was NO dilemma. Oh, but wait, this wasn’t even bad writing – this was HORRIBLE convenience writing. The ONLY reason that we [as audience members] were drug through the dirt with Claire and Owen being somehow responsible for a guy who wasn’t happy enough getting a billionaire’s free ride (and wanted more??!!), was so that they could have moral questions in the end, not do the right thing and save the dinosaurs (like opening the paddocks but closing the compound’s doors), and let the little girl be the hero! Oh yay … Maisie Lockwood (played by Isabella Sermon), a character with a huge story that they didn’t develop … ??? They even mention in the movie that Eli’s intentions are excessively flawed. He could have built another theme park, cured cancer, or done a million other activities to make money – but was somehow going down the same, failed path as before? Not even the bad guy in this movie is worthwhile. At least Nedry’s bumbling intentions were as bumbled as his character! For wasting our time with really bad, confusing writing, a 5 out of 10.

The Ugly

First off, movie mistakes are forgivable, but sometimes that are so glaringly stupid that they have to be called out. Toward the end, Zia Rodriguez (played by Daniella Pineda), was chained to the raptor cage. One end of the chain was a handcuff and the other was welded to the cage. At what point would the people building the wide open-barred cage for a velociraptor think, “Hey, we better put a handcuff on this in case we ever need to capture a doctor after accidentally shooting the dinosaur and then, for no good reason, hold her hostage!”????? She was kept hostage for NO REASON at all. Blue was healed. Dr. Henry Wu (played once again by the talented, but consistently underused, B.D. Wong), was a highly skilled geneticist with the ability to take care of the dinosaur meaning that Zia served no purpose. Well, unless you consider that she was there so that Franklin could come back (somehow having worked his way from being the only good guy that the bad guys didn’t spot as the trucks drove by … another ugly, to a worker in the geneticist lab even though he had no skill set or tolerance for blood?!?). Not only did the two of them come back into the script suddenly, but they came back as failures. This was horrible writing that felt contrived, weak, and inexperienced. (And, I will forgive the constantly erratic writing / filming where bad guys were only a short distance away, but suddenly disappeared and couldn’t hear the T-Rex throwing a fit, or decided not to put a guard on the dinosaurs, and other “obvious” ex machina). This is a -0.5 point deduction.

Obvious Bad Guy Plans: Okay, we all know that the bad guys want the dinosaurs for nefarious reasons. But, the very second that Eli Mills (played by Rafe Spall) said that he needed Claire’s hand print for access – plot done. Worse, hackers would not have needed that – so … stupid (as literally a dozen or more. They did NOT need Owen to capture Blue as they were intending on drugging her up anyway – so that was stupid. There was literally NO effort in this movie to hide the bad guy, while the first movie proved to us that we could know who the bad guy was from the very beginning and it made for an excellent story! So, – 0.5 points.

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I will never get this scene, or the cries of the dinosaur out of my head. While it was emotionally impacting, it’s not really what you want your audience of “dinosaur” lovers to take with them when they leave. Why would I want to watch this again – or a sequel for that matter?

3rd Movie Set Up: So, for you Jurassic fans that are used to a movie that closes, this is the first one in the franchise that does not. Not only was this a massively missed opportunity for some small amount of redemption (which I will cover next), but, in case you didn’t believe that just leaving the dinosaurs running loose in Los Angeles was a set up, for everyone who left before the end of the credits, they did a night time shot with the city in disarray and fly-o-sauruses resting atop a skyscraper. Yep – 3rd movie. I would have lived with this except for two reasons: this movie was too rushed (’cause if we’re gonna’ do a 3rd, invest some effort in the story), and because it violated the Jurassic franchise. Such a shame and evidence of bad writing, bad directing choices, and a greedy Hollywood that is destroying good movies. So, -0.5 points.

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From Simon Abrams at The Hollywood Reporter, there are some points I do and don’t agree with Mr. Abrams, but on one fact we do see eye to eye – lazy writing kills good movies.

Missed Opportunity: If we, as audience members, can walk away from a movie and literally all know the missed opportunities to properly end it – then the director, at the cutting room floor, should have been able to do the same, skilled or not. First off, “survivors” on Isla Nubar would have redeemed at least a small portion of the Brachiosaurus death, and been inspiring (as all Jurassic franchise movies are supposed to be). They could have actually not blown the dinosaurs up yet, and had the little girl launch a mission to actually save them (and incorporate that into the third World sequel). They could have let the dinosaurs loose in Lockwood’s compound, surrounded by 20 foot walls (as we were shown when first entering and again on the docks), and kept them contained and done something else. But, no – dinosaurs have been spread around the world to be used as weapons. So, now what? A third movie that’s rushed again, trying to cover a HUGE amount of story? I “gots me some” news for Hollywood – they keep doing the same thing by going cheap on a sequel, bringing in huge crowds from the first movie, and then assuming that means they’ll get a big turnout on the third sequel (ignoring the reviews). But, you know what? It NEVER works. How many times does someone have to fail before they figure out this is a stupid plan (sorry I keep using the word “stupid” so much in this review – but it fits). Anyway, sadly, another -0.5 points.

The Conclusion

So, how does Jurassic World, the Fallen Kingdom, rate?

Visuals: On the good side, a 10 out of 10. And, no negatives!

Audio: On the good side, a 9 out of 10, and nothing too terrible to speak of except for the missed opportunities for making this more of the Jurassic Park franchise.

Actors: On the good side, a 7 out of 10, and this is balanced with character introductions with a 7 out of 10.

Story Line: Sadly, as a key point in “movies”, nothing on the good side, and the bad side gets a 2 out of 10 for the extended scene dinosaur brutality, a 5 out of 10 for a generally flat story that’s banking on the other movies, and a 5 out of 10 for confused writing that doesn’t know how to keep the morals of the Jurassic franchise on track.

Directing: On the good side, the director did do some good things, but for a newbie director and the multitude of problems, a 4 out of 10 is being nice.

Bonus Points: Regardless of the massive problems, I felt like Jurassic World, A Fallen Kingdom, deserved a 9 out of 10 for keeping with some traditions, some great dinosaurs getting the bad guy scenes, and a few other goodies.

Point Drops: Unforgivable movie mistakes, -0.5. Trying to hide the evil mastermind cliche in the most obvious of cliches that could have been thought of (terrible writing), -0.5. An attempt at setting us up for another movie in the mindless Hollywood style of not having to try or give effort – which has now killed this franchise again, -0.5. Majorly missed opportunities for keeping this a part of the Jurassic franchise / winning movie formula, -0.5.

Final Score: 4.5 out of 10 (rounded up).

Final Thoughts: Could this movie have been saved? Well, unfortunately, there are two, major challenges that needed fixed: 1) A director who had the experience to see what was happening and fix it (not that this director was “bad”), and 2) Hollywood being penny wise and pound foolish, putting their energy in where they thought it would count (by condescending to fans, thinking that just flashing dinosaurs, like Jeff Goldblum and the T-Rex on screen would be an instant hit), and failing to do what the fan base wanted. And, honestly, I would have usually scored the movie lower, but I’m trying to be “nice”.

Hollywood can’t change people. They think they have control, but they don’t. That’s the illusion. When Hollywood realizes that people can only be abused for so long before they start to get Jaded, it will probably be too late. Thank goodness Disney figured that out with their Star Wars spin-off decision – HAHAHAHA.

Anyway, hope you get to see this, dinosaur fans. But, if you LOVE dinosaurs, be prepared to turn away or have a heart jerker – because it doesn’t get better no matter how long you sit and wait and hope for more!

Thanks for reading.


Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.” – Ian Malcolm (Hey, Hollywood – that’s good advice!)

 

 

 

Krypton – A Television Show Review (post-season 1 spoilers!)

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Season 1 of Krypton has come to an end and I have been processing it, giving it time to sink in (and now that Face Off has started again – all is right with the world). Krypton is a “background” story on Kal El / Superman, and not so much an “origin” story. By this, I mean that most “origin” stories on television involve the superhero in some way while Krypton goes back 2 generations (in Season 1) and gives a lot of insight as to what has happened.

The unfortunate part is that the origin of Krypton has been changed around from the golden age until now that there are many variations and the fans are probably split equally among them. This show tries to capture the most recent version, although it border lines on throwing away the canon aspect of the story and making it too complex.

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Screenrant’s explanation of the Justice League failure and this picture is worth more than a 1000 words … and probably more than the movie made!

C’mon, “DC”, you saw what happened in Justice League …

Here’s the deal: I have lost all patience for comic book movie directors, writers, and producers, who keep trying to “re-imagine” the story. The story doesn’t need “re-imagined”, because if it did, that would mean the original was a failure. And, you’re not remaking another movie – this is a comic book. A comic book is essentially a story board, with the script, actor appearances, costumes, and scene-by-scene play. Just follow it! The original story was GREAT – so build on THAT!

Starting off strong in Episode 1, Krypton was almost “too” slow, until we get to the Fortress of Solitude (the one belonging to Superman’s great grandfather, Val-El, played by Ian McElhinney). Suddenly, and only for a couple seconds, we hear those first, few, awesome notes from the original 80’s Superman movie theme:

And – I’m sold. As a child-fan of Superman, I had some of the comic books, the 50’s re-runs, and most importantly, the big screen Christopher Reeves. Hearing those notes made this background story particularly unique:

The writers took us away from the “Superman” story, but reminded us for just a brief moment, that even though this may be a little slow – we are going somewhere – and it is to the birth of Kal El (so exciting!). And, once again, in a latter episode, they replayed the song. This little nugget, as a “teaser” / reminder, is what it took to keep me coming back for more – because it means that this IS about Superman.

Otherwise – it gets a little … messy.

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“This is not a cape.” “Yes, yes it is a cape.” And so – the conversation goes. Oh, no wait – it was about trying to convince Kal El that the El crest from the future was not superfluous … what?? (photo from thrillist entertainment)

Braniac (the bad guy that Lex Luther was supposedly referring to as the one who is coming in the Batman v. Superman movie), is present to destroy Krypton.

(Yes – HISHE did a “What does the Lex Say” video … those guys are great!). Anyway, Braniac slowly works his way into the City of Kandor, the home of Seg-El (brilliantly played by Cameron Cuffe), Superman’s grandfather. For some reason, Braniac can’t just come in and “take” a planet? Assuming that’s not a problem for the audience, Adam (played by Shaun Sipos), a literal “bottom of the barrel” superhero for DC comes back in time to save Superman from his destruction. Sure, DC could have used Buster Gold, the Flash, Batman, or any other myriad of awesome superheroes, but, I’m assuming that for the reason of saving money on outfits and additional “effort”, they went with Adam Strange (who actually does have some cool superhero action … but just not here?).

In what starts out to be a semi-interesting story, we suddenly get thrown deep into the convoluted politics of Kandor, worshiping a fake god (Rao), who is protected by the blatantly crude military / police force, the Sagitari. I won’t get into those topics, because not only were they very uninteresting, since the City is going down anyway, and the timeline is getting changed, all the time we spend learning about these elements was apparently wasted “filler”. *sigh* The writers do try to throw in a little romance, some comedy, blah, blah, blah – and then boom! In comes Superman’s nemesis, General Zod (played by Colin Salmon). Clearly, he has traveled back in time, too (oh, but don’t worry – the most OBVIOUS question, you know, the one about how or why did he come back, is NEVER answered or dealt with in any reasonable way. For example, Adam Strange says he has come back to save the Last Son of Krypton by stopping Braniac, and everyone says, “poppycock!”. Zod comes back and says that he’s just sort of there, trying to save Krypton from “whatever” and, voila! Instant belief).

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Sure, they could have done a comparison with Superman’s Fortress of Solitude and that would have been a show-stopper … but eh … this works (as it is the only real/tangible “Kal-El” link we have at this point). (photo from Thrillist entertainment)

While the writers started out very well with the Zod family, introducing a new element that heightened the tensions and made the anticipation much of next season much cooler, General Zod literally sucked all the joy out of that story line. The so-called “reveal” that Seg-El was also the father / grandfather of Zod suddenly becoming uninteresting. They introduced Doomsday, too, and it was … ‘eh’. The real problem: continuity.

Rather than take their time with what could be a great story and focus on the background events that filled the DC Universe, the writers went with a cheap, soap-opera version of the story (like so many other “made-for-tv” superhero shows these days). The sets, although elaborate and nice, were re-used, and not well. Daron-Vex (played by Elliot Cowan),  was way too obvious and cliche. Therefore, it was “not” a surprise when the deceitful bad guy who was betrayed by another deceitful bad guy, fell on hard, bad-guy times.

But, here’s the thing: this show has one of the greatest potentials for attracting audiences from all ages and genres. It is such a refreshing idea to go this far back, that we have time to explore the Phantom Zone, time travel, adam strange, other DC characters, the origin of Braniac’s army / fight with Superman, the origin of Doomsday, Supergirl, and so on. But, one of the problems is that the Kryptonians were a barbaric race that conquered other worlds (and had the collective knowledge from all of them, always claiming “science” as their weapon of choice), but, in this series, Kryptonians didn’t even know aliens existed. What? Huh? I repeat: The story line does NOT need re-imagined. Just stick with what you know and tell the story board / or build off of that.

The “rush” to get us to the end of Season 1 was hard to watch. It was a soap opera in fast forward. Nothing was too complex to understand, but characters were needlessly introduced (since we were not going to see them develop), story lines were ‘touched’ on and then jumped way too quickly. We could have spent 90% less on the politics and MUCH more on the Fortress of Solitude, Doomsday and how he was captured / contained, etc.  One positive – a whole family can almost see this (language), because of no nudity (unless I missed it! Oh no o.0).

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Actually, in fairness to the Director and Producers – they put some serious effort into the little bit of science fiction / tech and special effects that they did do. This added effort turned out to be pretty cool, even if it was for wasted moments! (photo from Flickering Myth review)

The producers also really missed out on huge opportunities. They could have thrown in 1 or 2 costumed characters and instantly boosted their comic con base. Furthermore, they could have put out merchandising from this movie (starting with Adam’s zeta beam device). But, no – that seems to be out of their realm, too. This is too bad because that is one of the great ways that viewers ‘get’ interactive. They could have made a great website for this, with a DNA chamber (create your own “future” superhero self), and additional video background on the Sagitari. Rao, etc. Honestly, I would have gone on to that website and looked!

Will Superman ever make an appearance? Well, if the writers do a GREAT job and strategically combine all of the multi-ages of Krypton, that will be GOLD. There is one story line where Superman does travel through time – and this would fit it. The writers could touch on why Superman was the greatest in the “universe”, vs. just Earth, and give us SO much more. They could explore the superman suit, DNA absorbing sunlight, etc. But, I guess not just yet?

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So … instead of use EVERYTHING from the DC Universe that the fans LOVE … a “new” myth? WHY? WHAT FOR? Okay … if your writers were SO good that they could combine the “dark superman” origin with Braniac with this little twist – then okay – that would be mind blowing. But – the writers are NOT this good and it’s clear by the first season. Story board, remember? Already written … just … follow … it! (photo from DCPrime)

So, ultimately, the answer is that I guess that it wouldn’t matter if Superman doesn’t make an appearance (although it will help A LOT), so long as the story stays with the path we’re on TOWARD Superman’s birth and whether it takes 2 seasons, or 20, (with 20 episodes per season – see bottom of this post), as long as it ends with seeing General Zod whisked away to the phantom zone by the three rings, the planet shaking to death, and a “baby” Christopher Reeves being put into the capsule … then life would be gratifying and we could all sit back, take a breath – and go NUTS over how awesome this extension to the franchise was! Ahh … so nice to dream. Sadly, I doubt they’ll try this hard.

So, the video quality is great. The music, although not too memorable, is pretty good. The characters / story line development is lagging, but it is the potential for what they ‘could’ do next season is amazing! I will definitely give Season 2 a shot and will recommend it to all of you (watch 1 or 2 episodes of Season 1, first). I think it should be clear by the 1st or 2nd episode if the writers have improved. And, if they stay away from the soap-opera-y “made-for-tv” superhero show style and make THIS a superhero show – it will be SPECTACULOR! More tech, More fantasy characters, and a continuing build up to the man of steel, himself, and this will be a fun and thrilling Syfy network series.

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I want this House El spike crystal! If it was quality – I’d buy it. Oooo … I’ll 3D Print it … I can do that now! HAHAHA!

If you keep your expectations low, the series takes the lessons from Season 1 to build up a better Season 2, they have MORE than 10 episodes, and especially if you are a Superman fan, this one is for you! I would still rate Season 1 a 4 out of 10, but let’s see what happens next season before we officially “judge” it!

But, does Seg come back? Do we get to the Phantom Zone? What will Doomsday do when released? Will Adam ever figure out how to superhero? So …many … questions!

Thanks for Reading.

(sorry if this post is a little scattered … I’m working on theories to post about “400 Days” right now and mah’ brain is scrambled!!)


Rather than a quote – just a quick rant: Why in the holy heck has every television series gone from the 26+ episodes per season in the 80’s, to the now “lucky if you get 10”? Cartoon Network has become suspiciously aggressive on this decline? We are NOT talking about bags of potato chips that now have 50% less content at twice the price!? We are talking about television shows with LESS THAN 50% episodes with enough commercials and cable costs to make them 2000 times the price?? I absolutely do NOT get this?? Is Hollywood just being cheap? Joseph Adalian on Vulture claims it is the “trend” in Hollywood and allows for:

1) Hollywood to expand their roster: WRONG! Hollywood’s roster is full of complete crap and more re-runs now than ever?

2) A non-linear world doesn’t care about episode counts (basically, you can be cheap and get away with it): WRONG. I’ve already threatened The Magician’s, Steven Universe, Adam Conover, and a whole group of others – either increase the episode count – or I won’t waste my time. Nobody’s attention span is that short and “show holes” are too big a depressant to be bearable. I chalk this up to manipulation and mind control!! Muwahahahah!

3) Shorter runs can attract bigger stars: WRONG. Really? What “Big” stars have you seen? Let’s try something new: WORK for it or BE FIRED.

4) Creative ambitions dictate this: On this, I will concede and meet the writer half way. A well-produced show takes time. So … WRONG AGAIN! I have yet to see any of the hit series out there producing anything that were so ambitious that it would take that long to produce? I haven’t. While I liked Krypton, like I said before, reusing the same old sets – and the “less” cool ones that obviously required less effort. Green screens are the big thing now and most everything you see on television is fake. So … ambitious how? I may not be an actor or understand everything they go through, but I guarantee, their workdays and hours are a LOT less than the rest of us and for a whole lot more pay!

Anyway – I recommend to everyone – if you “care” about your entertainment, then speak up. Advertisers have to no that you’re pulling the plug unless these shows go for at least 20 weeks. Spread it on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, and so on. Let them know that NO – we are NOT cash cows for you to steamroll and to do it so blatantly is completely unacceptable! And, it IS unacceptable! No one deserves to be treated so poorly. Otherwise, if you don’t care, turn it off. They can track what people watch. As soon as no one is watching anymore, they’ll ask why. Then, smugly look them in the face and say, “Remember when you thought it was okay to cheat us and rake us over the coals? KARMA!

 

Why We Get Climate Change, Wrong

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from The Black Vault.com – Now here’s someone who understands climate change!

Ever heard that cute, little tune sung by Orphan Annie, “The Sun’ll Come Out Tomorrow”? You know who doesn’t like that song? Dinosaurs. Yep – it was a Tuesday, life was good, and all seemed well when suddenly …

*KABOOM* Extinction!

While the approach of a meteor probably had several days to weeks of impact on the planet, a collision of that magnitude and type is not something they were worried about. One minute, they’re standing around their favorite drinking hole discussing the best leaves to eat and the next … everything is gone. The sun did “not” come out for them, tomorrow.

And, that’s the fallacy, and confusion, of humanity. For a species with less than 2000 years of live-recorded environmental conditions, an extremely short lifespan, and living in a world where there are constant dangers that could bring instant death, people live in a massively arrogant state of “assumptions” about tomorrow. People either live in the moment and forget about tomorrow, or try to not stress and live comfortably in the idea that the sun will be up again, tomorrow.

Ever heard that old phrase, “live today as if it was your last?” Yeah, well, I bet that Fred, the T-Rex, at the drinking hole wishes he had heeded that phrase! Unfortunately, human arrogance has given rise to a global state of ‘assumption’, whereby cultures that believe they’re living the high life, like America, don’t worry about tomorrow because they are too caught up into themselves and have become apathetic. And, thanks to an excessively corrupted news media playing off of that apathy, people are spoon fed misleading information and they accept it as food – whether it is true or not.

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While it may look like climate change has caused this fish to resort to flying – the truth is that climate change has already impacted global wildlife in a bad way.

But, when I hear people countering global climate change with statements about how 1 or 2 degrees is ridiculous … I cringe at just how little they know about temperature change. When I hear people argue that because there are still hurricanes and tsunamis and the fact that the planet is 3/4 water so clearly, there is no concern about water … I REALLY cringe. Thank goodness for those people that “observation” is not the crux of all science or life, or else we would still be living in a kingdom whereby the Earth was at the center of the universe and the sun only zoomed around the planet thanks to Ra, the sun god!?

Yeah, I’m not exaggerating about dramatic shifts in the climate that people ignore. Yesterday (May 24, 2018), the New York Times published an article on the Rio Grande drying up and most people just shrugging it off. Now, mind you, this is not the first time that the Rio Grande has come this close to drying up – but it is getting progressively worse. The same holds true for irrigation waters in the Pacific Northwest of America. Globally, snow packs recede farther, then come back, and still recede farther, and so on. “Observationalists” as I shall call them (because they are not scientists), see rain and give praise to Zephyrus, the Greek god of rain, and come out to tell everyone that it’s okay … for the gods have shined their love upon as and there is still rain so climate change is bunk. Really?

(Photos from vice news and umc.org. Humans and climate change … o.0 … nahhh …)

It’s easier to just think of how amazing tomorrow will be then to stress out thinking about massive problems that we can’t change (Cognitive Dissonance). But, “observationalists” have backward thinking. Global warming is not about the rain, it’s about the evaporation. Evaporation is what causes changes in rainfall patterns. So, when water starts evaporating more rapidly in one area, that area may start flooding more than usual (Dallas or New York … anyone?). If it is flooding, there MUST be an abundance of water, right? But, while the East coast floods, the West coast (where rain was normally abundant), is drying up – rapidly. The difference is that human beings can “see” rain around them in their little inner circle of life, but they cannot “see” evaporation or the droughts occurring elsewhere. Thus, the earlier statement on humanity’s vanity and ignorance.

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Another great article on why people get climate change wrong, by the Fair Observer, here. “Oh sh#$, there goes the planet …

Another reason that humanity doesn’t understand climate change, and a far less popular view, is based on our evolutionary relationship to the planet. Whether you choose to believe that men are from Mars and women are from Venus, or just that people have evolved along a different path than the entirety of the planet – humans do not have an inherently built-in relationship with the Earth. For example, animals can sense geological vibrations and major weather pattern changes whereas people, even though our bodies respond (like sore joints during high humidity), do not naturally “sense” their environment (mostly … there are exceptions). Humans do not eat directly from the Earth without cultivating, changing, cooking, engineering, or altering foods. Humans do not blend into the environment, but rather, change it to fit a contradictory lifestyle. These, and a host of other reasons explain humanity’s disconnect from the planet Earth and failure to recognize major, climactic pattern fluctuations.

However, in absence of a relationship with the Earth, we are supposed to have an intellect that teaches us to look beyond observation and examine and evaluate ‘possibility’. So, while our disassociation from the Earth may be a very real causality, our need to live here and not be dead should be enough to change how we think!

Solutions?

Sadly, we are not talking about a global issue that is out of our reach to repair. The planet is over-populated, but out of the hundreds of billions being spent on researching incredibly basic technologies at stupidly high prices for space – no one is working on just getting people off the planet, or better yet, finding ways to restore cultivation to places like the African deserts (vs. stripping rain forests to extinction). Rather than find a way to get everyone into an electric car for free (that can use more solar than coal, else, that is stupid, too), prices keep skyrocketing. Heck, we are currently working on more ways to produce more coal power plants than clean energy. I am by no means a tree-hugger, but I do believe in protecting and conserving natural resources. If we cannot reign in the world’s ignorance (thanks to television and large corporations) regarding waste, then we should [at least] be more fiscally responsible and use taxpayer dollars to fund recycling projects at every landfill in America, not paying Amtrak.

What [we] as a people have to do is to reset our thinking. For far too long, people’s brains have been turned to mush by Hollywood and a global political system run amok. While political powers fight for control and authority, religious communities lay the smack down on one another, and individual conceit about appearance and gender rationale is at an all-time high, everyone is LITERALLY ignoring the fire burning around them. Seriously … the Middle East is suffering from massive earthquakes tearing their lives apart (with more earthquakes than days in a year), and yet, they are still busy fighting over where to put an embassy!?!

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Example: There are loads of reasons that bee populations are declining, but one of the most obvious is the fact that climate change may only be felt in increments for us – but to them – it is their apocalypse already. No bees … no food … no nutrition … economic collapse – and yes – it is an international concern right now!

The world climate is changing. And, to a highly arrogant and narcissistic human race, I would like to point out that climate change can happen rapidly and disasters can happen instantly (ask the dinosaurs … or the 10+ civilizations that have literally VANISHED overnight!). But, most people don’t step outside of their own, inner circle of life because people don’t want to have to think about the truth behind human beings as the main contributor to climate change …

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Here’s Newsweek, to tell you that it was the fault of the dinosaur comet – so deal with it. That’s a direct path toward apathy … thanks … news media!

Accountability.

No one wants to have to stop driving, or to care about where their recyclables go, or to do much else other than live outside of a narcissistic shell (and people tend to use drama to avoid accountability like focusing on the barrage of idiotic political garbage that has been streaming out of the news for the past year). The main reason we get climate change wrong is because once we use our brains to get past pure observation and stop trying to manipulate our environment while ignoring the signs, it still requires accountability. It is accountability (and cognitive dissonance) that allows us to ignore signs, not use our brains, and live off observation alone. In other words, not re-shifting your thinking and taking it more seriously / getting involved, is like being a smoker. You know it will kill you *cough* *hack* *wheeze* … but … oh well. Sound reasonable, to you?

So, we’ll have to give up a few conveniences for a while and make some serious changes in how we all live (vs. wastefulness, for example). Plus, we have to stop pretending to be ignorant and letting the wrong people take the lead on reparations or else it will expedite the problem. And, our priorities about money, vacation, and life will have to shift for a few years to crack down on an exponentially building problem.

All of the concerns about the environment could be taken up with Legislation, as voters. We could quit worrying about making “bathrooms fair for people” and worry more about whether or not we’re going to have RAIN in 20 more years for those same “people”. We can force our leadership to reposition the expense of monies to something more productive. Think it’s still not something you could get into? Ask someone in Hawaii to sing that little Orphan Annie song … go ahead … see if they don’t punch you. It affects everyone …

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Hawaii’s “tomorrow” – from Popular Mechanics

Yet, while the world whittles away at Stormy Daniels and Russian collusion – real people are suffering – and it is going to get worse. Thank goodness you can sit idly by and trust folks like NASA to recognize climate change (finally) and handle it because, what could go wrong with that?

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As I’ve argued before – scientists are many times so narrow-minded that their lack of ingenuity results in rashly attempting an immediate fix without consideration of the consequences. I mean … space mirrors? As if Aluminum oxide that kills forests and contributes to increasing heat wasn’t stupid enough …

Everything; because all that “conspiracy” cloud seeding, aluminum oxide, and intentional aerosol in the air that most news and political sources discredited and laughed at 10 – 20 years ago – while it was happening – is now at the forefront of science. It is literally no different than letting a group of five year olds solve the problem … with space mirrors (sorry Mr. and Mrs. scientists – but that just ‘sounds’ stupid)! Yes! Let’s mine the planet for more materials, create more fracking, use up more water, create more reclamation disasters, and cause more global warming to build space mirrors!?

Oh … no … wait … let’s “increase” aluminum oxide cloud seeding that congests forest floors and kills trees because that won’t have any negative impact! Seriously, even doctors try to bandage wounds to stop the bleeding even though they may not know the cause! In the previous image the current so-called / scientific guys are … LITERALLY RECOMMENDING … making the problem worse in the hopes that will “magically” make it better?!?!

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From defensecommunities.org -> Let Uncle Sam do it! He’s done “so good” for everything else like education, welfare, justice, and other parts of life, right? (hehehehe)

STUPID. SO … SO … SOOOOOOOOOOOOO STUPID!

By the time these guys are done spending trillions of dollars on the dumbest solutions for the highest paid contractors possible – we could have grown crops in a desert. In that same period of time, we could have explored ionizing regions of smog-filled cities to contain pollution. We could have developed ways to minimize agricultural irrigation water spending needs. We could have cut off thousands of uncontrolled irrigation districts with no oversight, fired the idiots, and helped rebuild our country’s water management. We could have used common workers (not prevailing wage rip-off scammers), to scour away billions of acres of wasted landfill and ocean debris for recycling. We could have put ten million clean energy cars on the road, switching out 1/30th of the nation’s transportation pollution usage (and although a small percentage – the pollutant output is HUGE)! And so on … and so on (there is a LOT out there). Conversely, maybe these scientists are genius: just speed up negative climate change, wipe out most of humanity, wait underground for a hundred years while the Earth heals, and then start over! (<=scary).

Sorry to go on about solutions and a need to get involved – but it just further expands the fact that even the people that are ‘blindly’ trusted to get the job done so everyone else can be apathetic, can get climate change wrong, too. Something I thought you deserved to know, because knowledge IS power.

Anyway, there’s my two cents worth.

Thanks for reading. Hope someone had a good takeaway from this.


Movie Review: Deadpool 2 – The Second Coming; The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly (Spoilers)

Rated: 7.1 out of 10

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You can get this poster with the purchase of movie tickets through Fandango … plus $7.95 to ship it. Really? $7.95 for ground, 2 week shipping? Nope. It’s a $7.95 poster … how cheap and poor quality of Fandango.

Once again, Marvel has unleashed its adult-content MCU back onto the big screen with a sequel to the highly popular, Deadpool, called Deadpool 2: The Second Coming. And, while the first movie was so highly popular due to its “out-of-the-box” gritty nature, knowing that the “shock” value was gone, instead of building the story, Marvel sought to up the ante – and it was both a complete success and a total failure. I saw this movie in a Regal Cinema, standard lowest end Cinema offered with no 3D and a horrible attempt at surround-sound (with really cr@ppy seating). While I consider myself an audio and video person (and typically demand bigger and better), the smaller screen actually helped to keep up with everything going on and the audio was so crisp and clear (having been filmed with the IMAX hack theater in mind), that it sounded amazing. So, other than a cruddy theater experience (to which I do not hold the movie accountable), the massive cost savings was WAY worth it (cheaper for 2 adults in a regular Regal Cinema than 1 adult in a Regal IMax “experience” / aka IMAX hack).

If you want to laugh … and you don’t take kids under 17 … and you want some quick, no-story, fast-action, stupid humor, no-thinking, down and dirty Deadpool beat-down fun, then go see this movie. It is a great, 1 night flick (that you will probably never watch again), and hits the spot. It’s like wanting a Carl’s Jr. Double Western Bacon Cheeseburger on the same night you just went out to buy pizza … mmmm … just that ‘little’ upgrade from joy to ecstasy, makes this a great movie at a cheap price. Don’t spend your money on IMAX “experiences” … SO not worth the cost.

The Good

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From Movieweb.com

David Lietch, who has a fairly impressive movie “involvement” career, took over for director Tim Miller from the first Deadpool movie. Setting aside the many negative things I will hit upon later in this review, I think David Lietch did an ‘okay’ job with the directing. He tackled the fight scenes in a non “cut-shot at every hit” way that truly reflected his stunt-person background. The shots were clean, the use of surroundings was mostly impressive, and the amount of directing-to-content (which is a term I “just” made up for this review as a way to say that the directing fit the script vs. the script fitting the directing, like in architecture, form follows function), was extremely well done. Deadpool definitely puts a heavy load on a director, trying to pull off  non-stop campy humor in the midst of huge amounts of action. Add to this some very impressive use of CGI (without too much or too little), and like I said, it was a pretty good job. There were definite “tells” that David Lietch is not a veteran director, so for a first time, without being “great”, and not being bad (like JJ Abrams), I would give the filmography a 7 out of 10.

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A pouting Colossus was one of the few, real highlights for the Director. Without words, we get that Colossus is torn between wanting to follow Deadpool’s darker and less appropriate path to save kids vs. the X-Men path of peaceful resolution. That is some good directing. Unfortunately, I think this fell short to a lot of audience members from what I heard outside the theater – because of the campy, non-stop barrage of sarcasm from Deadpool. So, sadly, a great directing moment … but less successful writing / directing timing.

The audio was exceptional in this movie. The music was ‘mostly’ well selected albeit not too impressive while the sound effects were spot on. It was so incredibly easy to be drawn into every scene and feel the full emotional effect and impact, from funny to sad, that it was non-stop “great”. Without needing to say much more on that, for the audio, I give an 8.5 out of 10, only cutting it short for what could have been a better selection of music.

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Non Stop @ss jokes … woohoo. That was done in the first movie … but hey … let’s do some more anyway since nothing else in life is funny … ???

The story line was … well … this is going to go mostly into the next sections of this review. As for the good, the humor was shockingly great for about 90% of the movie. I literally did not stop laughing from beginning to end – and once more at the very last minute with the “Oh Sh!@, Here Comes the Juggernaut” song. That was, awesome! The background story for this movie was weak – very weak. Since it was Deadpool, we did not need “too much”. Honestly, I was “REALLY” hoping that Marvel would have pulled their heads out of their rear ends and created a Deadpool / Lady Death relationship so that the second part of the Infinity Gauntlet could focus on just how much Deadpool could taunt Thanos and make him miserable … but alas … that did not make its appearance (and I’ll refrain from docking the movie for this HUGELY missed opportunity – although it would be worth a LOT of negative points!!). Instead, setting aside the “stupid”, the cross-genre references in this movie numbered in the dozens (or more), the opening credits assault on Hollywood was funnier than before, and throughout the movie, laughter roared through the audience. So, even though the anti-superhero shock value is gone, we are getting to see even more Deadpool funny with much of it new, building up to an easy 9 out of 10 on the comedy scale. I would have gone full 10, but I am not counting 12-year old butt humor and baby ball jokes as ‘funny’.

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from Bleedingcool.com

The characters … so … um … Deadpool 2 really isn’t about anyone else other than Deadpool. There were plenty of cameos, quick inclusions of other characters, and probably the largest supporting cast in history. Otherwise, it was pretty much Deadpool – and Ryan Reynolds has that role nailed! I would only give this movie a 6 out of 10 for characters for all the missed opportunities, the wasted time on characters, and not giving Reynolds a chance to build Deadpool into something “more”, for a third movie or inclusion in other MCU content (as it really is getting limited … going on a “too much Jack Sparrow” run if it keeps going like it is). And, I would have gone lower, except that they gave Domino (played by the lovely Zazie Beetz) just enough extra screen time to show off her stuff and make her character really lovable.

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A shame … Surge had a sexy outfit and would have looked great, here. This would have followed the new Marvel motto of matching comic outfits to characters. Not sure why they didn’t do it … but … whatever. Yukio was funny!

Some of the story, for which I will not dock points, was just badly written. For instance, we got it that the interns and director were zapping mutants – but nothing implied they were pedophiles. So, that just created an unnecessary nastiness. Besides, if they were, the fact that the X-Men did not save them and Colossus still punished Deadpool would have made that fact a whole, lot more difficult to accept. This was a juxtaposition that “dumbed” down the story line and was evidence of some lazy writing.

The Bad

The story line was horrid. It was a “neat” Deadpool-can’t-die concept and how sad it was for him to be a superhero, but … no. Reynolds and Morena Baccarin (as Vanessa) continued to make an amazing team, bringing the only real, ‘heartfelt’ emotions to the story. There was literally nothing to give the Cable (played by Josh Brolin) story ANY value. I think the idea was to ‘shock’ the audience with a delayed reveal on his family’s death, but was so obvious that we walked into the theater expecting it. Thus, it was a wasted reveal that could have been WAY better spent using Brolin’s excellent acting abilities and building the sadness between his life and Deadpool’s that would have been phenomenal (a “Martha” moment, as I believe it shall forever be known!!)! The waste of time in the story is a -0.5 points.

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Yep … condescending to crowds just to get a rise … funny once … stupid the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and nth time in a row …

The humor in Deadpool 2 was, as previously stated, side-splitting funny for “most” of the movie. Three, major, “obvious first time director”, flaws in the humor that hurt the movie. The first was the “amount” of humor trying to be thrown in which ended up “dragging” out and ruining many of the jokes. Wade’s “baby balls” shirt joke was funny for 2 seconds with Blind Al (played by Leslie Uggams), but after that – went flat and just drug on. Another example of this was the constant, non-stop idiocy of Deadpool. While in Professor Xavier’s school, Deadpool stole Xavier’s wheelchair, complaining about the mansion and then made a joke as to why the movie was being too cheap to bring in any of the X-Men only for us to see them standing right there, trying to hide from Wade (because none of them like Deadpool). It was funny and well-timed, but was ultimately, also a sad statement on the fact that the movie “was” being cheap (especially since it wasn’t even real cameos as those weren’t the real “movie” X-Men, but I don’t want to rate this movie down because of Hollywood / actor / overpriced B.S.). However, in contrast to this, when Deadpool wouldn’t stop grabbing Colosses’ butt (played by CGI), along with all the other sexual reference jokes, it just kept beating down the relationship between the two – way too far.

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See? I wasn’t joking. Butts … more butts … bare butts … baby butts … and blah blah blah. Funny once or twice … but not after 4 months of gay / butt advertising shots?

The second major mistake was the use of 12-year old “fart/butt-style jokes.” We didn’t need to see a close-up of baby-butt on Deadpool, or the Juggernaut’s butt. Albeit funny – it is not part of the quality humor that was otherwise spread throughout the movie. The “shank” pen in Russell’s butt – not funny. This same type of low-grade humor was constantly used with all the sexual reference jokes to being gay. It’s not a gender-bias thing, it’s just that it went on so much that it became unpleasant. The first movie’s inclusion of these types of jokes was well balanced with the rest of the movie. However, I would wager that less than 10% of Deadpool’s lines were anything other than sarcasm or humor. That destroys content.

Finally, the third major mistake was the screen-time filler, buffering the movie with useless content for a single joke. So, it turns out that the X-Force theme that dominated the previews was nothing more than a long joke that was thrown into the movie for a way to 1) Introduce Domino – which could have happened a thousand other ways, and 2) make the joke of killing everyone else on the X-Force team right away (except when Deadpool saved “only” Peter, played by Rob Delaney, with his time travel / post movie skit). The interviews with the superheroes were reminiscent of the 1999 Mystery Men, movie with an immediate kill that echoed the 1988 I’m Gonna Git You Sucka movie when one of the main heroes dies immediately after gearing up. And, the pen in Russell’s butt went on for so long that it lost value. So, for these mistakes, being too derivative and cliche, and not using the time well spent, this is a -1.5 points.

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No … not working. Sorry. Having to pad Reynolds so it’s not obvious that Julian is wider than him … just sad.

The use of Julian Dennison as a major character in this movie … the “kid to be saved” – was not interesting. I won’t dock the movie for this – but they could have done a LOT better.

The Ugly

While I won’t knock points off of the movie, the “15,000 people were employed to make this film” inclusion at the very end was super annoying. Do we care? Do we feel for Marvel and all the money they put out? I don’t. Considering what my tickets cost … and how Hollywood has been cheating the system, how Marvel cheated the Infinity War (and banked off of it), and how everyone in the IMax theater was paying more than twice as much for half as much content – I care because …? Listen, Hollywood, first off: you’re as bad as Uncle Sam when it comes to overpaying people, so figure it out. We don’t make 6 digit figures every 3 – 4 years for a movie. In fact, many of us won’t make 6 digits in more than 20 years of working. So … try to see it from our perspective. Second, you have been increasing the costs of movies so rapidly, and for terrible content, that it feels like it is literally stealing from people. Finally (and this is not the last of it – I have a VERY long list), you engage in inappropriate political behavior with the public, influence children in really bad ways, and literally abuse the audience. You helped create a generation of people that stopped caring about you – so you fix it. Sorry readers … I digress …

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From Indiewire.com. While it may be CGI – it was a LOT better than the “other” juggernaut … sheesh!

Electrocution by … bunghole? So, while I commented earlier about the over-abundance of gay-reference / butt humor, one of the scenes that takes it beyond just ‘funny’ (for example), is the scene when Colossus shoves an electrical cable in the Juggernaut’s rear end (played by … again … CGI / Reynolds … ? Justifies Deadpool signing a cereal box with his real life name I suppose …). Was it necessary? Did it give us anything more, funny? Knowing that the Juggernaut was trapped underwater and being electrocuted to unconsciousness was … already funny. It even gave the movie a way to include Yukio (played by Shioli Kutsuna) with mutant powers (although, sadly leaving out Brianna Hildebrand / Negasonic blah blah name too long). But, the butt-plug scene was just a little, too, over the top for this movie. It is a ‘superhero / anti-superhero’ movie and I do expect a lot of ill-humor – but not that. Again, it is only my opinion, but we don’t need to have anymore condescending Hollywood garbage. This was condescending and dul-drum, trying to appease … what audience (I don’t know)? For that, a -0.5.

The “Papa Can You Hear Me”, joke was actually pretty funny. But, it is pretty outdated, since audiences were bringing this up years ago. Still, it was a creative way to throw in that joke, so I won’t downgrade for outdated humor, but it was definitely not the “top” of what the movie could have been and was a sign of some “not-so-pleasant” lazy writing. That, and what makes it fit in the “Ugly” category – is that this scene was a painful reminder that this is a “Fox” branch of movie makers, who are actually now the Disney branch, which is now becoming a confusing / limitations on cross overs due to proprietary B.S. / “thing”, that audience members should not have to be dealing with.

Last, but not least – Hollywood: STOP WITH THE NEWBIE AND CRAP DIRECTORS – REALLY! Seriously, Infinite War was not directed by the guys that transformed Thor: Ragnorok into a hit … nooo. It’s like going from a really bad director, like JJ Abrams, and giving him a Star Wars movie that was MORE impossible to butcher than toast (although he butchered it worse than a slaughterhouse), to a no-name director for the sequel, giving someone who had no business handling such a big movie the job!?!? There are a LOT of good directors out there … and writers … so WHERE ARE THEY? Seriously … they give Michael Bay Transformers and he butchers it. To make things worse, they keep picking worse directors going down the list as they drag out terrible versions of the movie? Why? It’s not hard. In fact, NO director OR writer has a SINGLE excuse for a bad Marvel movie (bad X-Men outfits, Green Lantern, and Logan included). These movies are based on Comic Book characters. The costumes are made, the story boards are written, and all you gotta’ do is put it into film. This is NOT a “creative” issue requiring “interpretation” (I know – I’ve done it). It’s easy. If one more of these movies is directed by and written by a no-name or crappy director who can’t stop himself from butchering a good story or doesn’t know how to write / direct well … I will deduct points! For now … I will let Deadpool ride because it is a pretty open story line. But, it could have been … and should have been … better.

Conclusion

Setting aside all of the shameless plugs, annoying and not funny promos, and the fact that Marvel and other studios will not stop using stupid directors (JJ Abrams) and first timers / no ‘namers’, Deadpool turned out to be about as much fun as I expected for a sequel. Sequels are rarely ever as good as the original – but also rarely this funny. It reminds me of the National Lampoon’s Griswold movies and their sequels. They were never as good as the original, but I never stopped laughing! In fact, I think, except for some small effort to make this a ‘superhero’ movie, this was such a departure from Deadpool and the MCU that it became more like a National Lampoon’s / Wayne’s World ‘campy’ movie and the only way to enjoy it, is to expect just that … campy. Going in under the pretense of all the continuously improving MCU titles and expecting more is probably a reason that many audiences felt a little ’empty’ after Deadpool 2.

Directing / Filmography: A 7 out of 10 for good effort and some really successful shots / timing with the script, but too many ‘newbie’ mistakes to be great.

Audio: An 8.5 out of 10 for “smashingly” awesome sound effects, but the 1.5 off for not giving us “great” music choices.

The Story Line: A VERY generous 9 out of 10 for the ‘almost’ non-stop laughs, the attack on DC, the attack on the Green Lantern, and the excellent “I’m Batman” reference. Not perfect since the holes and lack of effort in the story line were too glaring.

The Characters: A 6 out of 10 as the make-up, special effects, Deadpool, Cable, and Domino were all excellent. Unfortunately, that was all that was excellent. Cable needed more ‘story’, Russell (played by Julian Dennison) was not enjoyable, and the use of an almost “all supporting cast” with just Deadpool as the sole focus in a movie that was “not” Deadpool as the sole focus, fell a little short.

-0.5 for wasting time in the story line.

-1.5 for failing to fully utilize the humor well and mix that in with a story so that this sequel could have been AWESOME! (Think of Guardians of the Galaxy 2 vs. No. 1!!!).

-0.5 for condescending jokes like shoving a cable in the Juggernaut’s butt, Deadpool with baby balls, the X-Force cameo for being derivative, and so on.

20180519_210819.jpg
While there are amazing, young, sexy dudes like this one, posing across from Deadpool … does Regal Cinemas not get the point of these displays … whereby putting them in bad locations makes for bad shots? Sheesh! At least this promo was saved by a REAL fan! Now … if Reynolds could only see this … and give this kid an autograph and take a real photo with him … I “might” add a couple more points to the review … (hey … shameless plug, really? Did you see the Deadpool / Bob Ross ad? I’m within my rights, here … not to mention bringing “you”, the reader … original content! At least it’s not me up there … whew!)

That brings us down from an average of 7.6 to 5.1 out of 10. However, for as many of the bad things that I left out of this review, there were still a lot of good aspects of the movie, too. It was, after all, Deadpool and a break from the “drama-driven” MCU. It did have potential and they didn’t screw around with trying to appease “too many” people … although they were obviously trying to be “PC” with a trans-gender crowd (and kudos to them for effort … although it’s still just “using” and playing to people’s differences for money). And, from mocking the poorly done movie Logan, to mocking the director for being a stunt man, to the time travel repair of Deadpool’s stupid twisted appearance in the 2009 movie, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, (and many more mocks, like Martha, executing pedophiles, applying gay lip balm, and more, can be found on IMDB, here), it’s hard to let this movie ride in the middle. So, I’m going to forgive the other screw-ups and bump it up 2 points to a 7.1 out of 10 for all those other, awesome additions that really made the movie hilarious and a fast-thrills, fun ride! (Although, warning you must be this tall (points to ceiling), to “safely” ride this roller coaster!)

I would have given it 1 extra bump point if the story had been better, there had been a Lady Death / Infinity War inclusion, or even 2 more points if Marvel had made this into more of the MCU universe than a campy off-shoot, but alas, those things, did not happen.

Thanks for Reading, hope you got something out of this! Not my most in-depth, deepest, or best review, but I am being brief on this one since there are already so many other reviews on line. Please feel free to comment, rebuke, rebut, flame, agree with, offer to pay me cash, or make any other comment you would like!


Cable: “I got two charges, one to get me here, one to get me home.

Deadpool: “Well that’s just lazy writing.

(Hey – they SAID it in the movie … so I’m not making this stuff up!)