But I’ll get to that later. Don’t want to conflate my dislike for the movie with my enjoyment of the day.
If nothing else the experience of going was worthwhile, even if the movie wasn’t.
We were going to a special restaurant for dinner until storm clouds rolled in. So we shifted plans and went to a less outdoors-y experience with Renzo’s Pizzeria.
Grandma and Grandpa say they’ve been going to this sweet little Italian joint for years, and I can see why. The pizza was very good.
As was the company. I got to hear the stories how Grandpa quit biting his nails (a request from Grandma when they were dating) AND how he quit smoking (thanks to a bet with someone who was supposed to lose weight and wound up gaining it).
Kiss your wife and kids goodbye, it is time to ascend into the aether of purgatory.
God is dead. We have killed him.
Long live the King.
This is how April Fools jokes work, right? Piggybacking off of a company’s April Fools joke to make a different joke?
I’m assuming the pre-conceived notion that I enjoy writing about Fire Emblem Heroes might make people double take at this weirdly set-up post and have a nice chuckle.
However, at the bottom of this jokey joke I wanted to seriously address my recent absence from blogging.
Chalk that up to a combination of a party in Fullerton I went to Saturday that lasted until 4:00 a.m. Sunday, followed by most of that Sunday spent shopping with my parents while playing Shantae: Half-Genie Hero.
I’ve already blown through three campaigns in the span of a day or two, and if I were you I’d expect a review of sorts within the next couple days.
Hopefully I’ll be better with my writing in general this Spring Break. I have a bunch of extra time that I’ll mostly be using for homework, but I want to keep y’all in mind too.
All I have to do is figure out things to write.
So, if you have any ideas, let me know about them somewhere on the Internet!
In the meantime, I’m off to catch some Z’s. Because I didn’t expect to be up so late making this joke post.
One of them was most available today around 12:30 p.m.
Because I was the one who fucked up, I couldn’t try to waive off their best time because it wasn’t convenient for my do-nothing day. So I went to Fullerton to deliver the card.
The whole meeting took literally two seconds. It was ostensibly just a hand-off, and they left immediately after the product was given.
So yay. An hour’s worth of a drive for two seconds of pay-off.
On days such as these I usually try to find things to do so that my time is not wasted. When my attempts to reach out to a couple local friends all ended in failures, I resigned myself to whittling time away in the Honors Center with homework.
By working on homework, I mean working on Comm Law homework. Because that stuff takes hours — and in fact I was working on it all four hours I sat in the Center until it closed at 5:00 p.m.
Then I spent even more time on it after I got home from my ~hour & fifteen minute drive.
As much as I’m enjoying the class, the sheer amount of work is absolutely killer.
Yet, the lectures we had to look over this weekend spoke to me more than usual. Our topic was the one and only:
Now I know what you must be asking yourself. “You don’t have any intellectual property, Jason. Why did this speak to you?”
First off, rude.
Second, given the requirements for copyright (having an original work of authorship fixed in a tangible medium of expression), I would say I have copyrighted intellectual property in both my journalism and whatever I’ve written on this blog.
Unlike trademarks, which pertain to brands and aim to create an association with product quality so consumers can knowing what they’re buying. Because capitalism.
I don’t have a brand to protect, and trademarks only begin the moment they are put into commercial use. So I can’t claim I own that as easily as I do copyright to an extent.
Now. I’m sure some of you must be asking yourselves a different question. “Jason, why the hell are you spouting Comm Law nonsense at us? This isn’t a lecture.”
The point I’m aiming toward is that I’ve taken the opportunity to think about copyright further than just my journalistic writings. I’ve been thinking about a copyright that, at least to me, feels a bit more important in the moment.
I’m working on having a copyrighted work in the completely original intellectual property of my Senior Honors Project novel.
Though it’s obviously a pipe dream for a product I haven’t finished yet, something about learning the bundle of rights that come with a copyrighted work made me kind of giddy.
Five rights come with copyright that pertain to how one wants to divide up and license out their work:
I’m not going to say I expect my novel to hit the same heights as, say, the Harry Potter series (which we used as an example).
I’ll be talking about the larger, more exciting subjects (to me) in detail before lumping the rest together for a quick mop-up at the end. So if you want to follow along, feel free! I’ll try to include individual trailer links where possible.
That said, let’s a go!
Super Mario Maker 2
Oh man, if there was any reason to own a Wii U, it was Super Mario Maker.
When I got mine, it was in a Mario Maker bundle that included this neat Mario Amiibo:
I spent hours making levels on the game pad, and the sheer amount of creativity oozing out of all corners of the Nintendo universe during its time in the spotlight was something to behold!
Given the first game’s pedigree and the sheer amount of improvements for an already creative powerhouse, I’ll be more than happy to drop some money on this come June.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses
There was a decent amount of RPG news for fans to soak up in this Direct.
Dragon Quest had Builders 2 — even though I forgot the first game was a thing — and 11S Definitive Edition. I haven’t personally played a DQ game, but 11 looks like a fun, polished game with a cute 16-bit mode.
If nothing else, I’ll be expecting the protagonist as a Smash Bros. DLC.
The original Final Fantasy 7 and 9 Switch ports got some recognition, as did Chocobo Mystery Dungeon. Plus Square Enix has Oninaki coming, which looks pretty.
The segment kicked off with a lore-filled cinematic about the titular three houses in this new continent, the customizable player protagonist’s place in the story and more.
The leaders of the three houses — Edelgard of the Adrestian Empire, Dimitri of the Kingdom of Faerghus and Claude of the Leicester Alliance — all got some attention too. You only get to choose one, which will presumably branch into three campaigns.
Only this time we just have to buy one game!
The most interesting thing about Three Houses is that it looks like a high school anime, filled with vaguely Harry Potter-esque sensibilities and Fire Emblem mechanics.
Rather than a tactician, you are a teacher with students making up your ‘army.’
All of the battles (presumably before a real war breaks out) are considered training assignments, despite featuring such tasks as “quashing rebellions.”
In general the premise and scope of the game seems very interesting compared to most Fire Emblem titles. I’m excited to see where they go with it!
… I’m also excited to see Intelligent Systems announce a Heroes banner with the three leader characters sometime before the July 26 release date.
I know the original 1993 GameBoy version has been available on multiple platforms for years, but I’ve never gotten around to it.
Now I can justify putting it off by saying I waited for this brand new experience in an absolutely adorable Pikmin-esque art style!
The ‘2019’ release date is vague, but Marin humming the game’s theme over the end card sent a shiver down my spine. So I’m ready to wait for you, Wind Fish.
Those were my high points in today’s Direct, but there were plenty of other games spotlighted!
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate got a lame teaser for it’s upcoming 3.0.0 update where we found out nothing, other than Amiibo coming for the Belmonts and Pokémon Trainer.
Updates were announced for Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker and Starlink, the latter featuring more Star Fox characters. I don’t own either, but still neat.
Demos were announced for Yoshi’s Crafted World, Daemon X Machina and Tetris 99.
… The last of which being a battle royale-styled Tetris game? I’m definitely going to have to try that and see if it’s as weird as it sounds.
Hellblade, Dead by Daylight and Rune Factory 4 are all getting ports for the Switch (plus Rune Factory 5 was announced). I’m not sure I’ll have the time to get to those over everything else, but I’ve heard great things about them all.
Mortal Kombat 11 and a remasted Assassin’s Creed 3 (from what I understand the best of the series) are coming to Switch.
Yet there were games I didn’t particularly care for, like Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3, Box Box + Box Girl (basically my TI-83 calculator game), Disney Tsum Tsum Festival and GRID Autosport car racing among them.
But that said, it’s hard to say there’s not something here for everyone, even if they aren’t for me!
… Unless you’re a fan of Bayonetta. Because Bayonetta 3 only got a brief ‘in progress’ mention after PlatinumGames‘ Astral Chains was announced.
Still, the future of the Nintendo Switch continues to be promising!
Which games stood out most to you in today’s Direct? Let me know, I’d love to start up some conversations!
With Dad at work and Mom + Aly off in Disneyland where the youngin’ was marching in a parade (which would be a much more exciting story if it was mine to tell), I had the house to myself today.
So obviously I partied hard with some friends, got messed up on drugs, died and am now writing this from the grave.
In all seriousness, I didn’t party too hard and become a spooky, scripting spirit. As cool as that would be.
I actually had a chill afternoon all on my lonesome. I didn’t even leave the house outside of going to the gym.
After two weekends of running around doing things with relatives, it was nice to take it slow and focus on my own stuff. Mostly because all of the running around made me fall behind on my novel-writing schedule.
20 pages a week doesn’t seem like too much until you get hit with the roadblock of a death in the family.
But luckily, I was able to rectify that setback with a nice, quiet day on the couch.
At this point I’ve made it to ~35 pages, with my goal being at least 40 before tomorrow.
So far everything is shaping up far nicer than in my original 12-page attempt at a draft. I’ve actually made it past the first major set piece of the story: An underground cavern with a single room at the end of it.
… Exciting, I know. I promise it sounds better with in-depth descriptions!
One of the more interesting bits of research I’ve done recently to push my writing forward was, as the title suggests, finding the right mythical Tolkien-esque creature to fit the slot of an antagonistic race for my main characters.
Luckily my friend Sam is a bit of a Dungeons and Dragons savant and came up with a whole bunch of possibilities when I asked if there were any good avian-themed monsters I could use.
Why avian specifically? It was a jokey idea when I was writing that early draft that started when I described a helmet as beak-like, and stuck so I could make one of my characters call them “birdbrains.”
So… Bird people. Seemed legit.
I didn’t quite expect there to be so many different kinds of bird people, however. There really is a ton to unpack when you delve into the inner-machinations of an experience like D&D.
Probably the most obvious and well-known example is the Harpy.
Pretty famous representative from Greek mythology. Not a bad choice, but a little too much of a monster-monster for my tastes.
The kind of creature you can see mindlessly attacking, but not necessarily forming an advanced society.
So next came the Kenku.
Definitely a closer match, given their clear propensity for humanoid dress and a variety of roles in warfare.
However, the crow look is a bit too inherently evil-looking, and they are quite a sinister race apparently. Was looking for more of a neutral appearance.
Plus they cannot fly in the lore, which is something I wanted to include.
So Kenku were a no.
Luckily the third choice, Aarakorca, was perfect.
Check out these majestic bastards.
Not only are they a perfect blend of humanoid and avian features to make for a fairly human-like sensibility in my story, but the extra lore features from D&D — their obsession with self-grooming, bilingualism, status as traveling explorers and the fact that they look like giant birds while flying — make great tie-ins to my story’s purpose for them.
Namely… To be a surrogate for Napoleonic-era French society.
Yeah, that’s right.
It’ll be even weirder when I write about their leader riding around on a horse despite being a literal birdman. And I love it.
Being able to gather all sorts of new knowledge on interesting fantasy creatures has been a great pleasure of mine over the course of this project. It’s essentially an amalgamate of some of my favorite video games, movies and books in the fantasy genre, so the more I can include the better.
Wargroove is the big contributor of new ideas to my concoction at the moment, but that game deserves its own story another day.
In the meantime, I’m going to get back to writing so I can finish this section I’m in the middle of. Who knows, perhaps I’ll start to trickle out passages and chapters for advice in the near future.
All I know now is that this line kind of defines my brain.
With Screen Actors Guild and Visual Effects Society voting for academy awards approaching, my family has been spending the last few days watching a lot of movie screeners we’ve been accruing. Hence my (not so) little review of Aquaman last night and my intent to do some more 2018 movie discussions this weekend.
Today we watched two movies with interesting points I wanted to talk about, but Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald wound up being a much more impassioned subject than I expected. So I think I’ll save Green Book for later.
Gotta split up my writing a little bit, get some mileage for my daily writings.
I’ll be focusing more on one specific point that I feel did this film and the themes it creates a huge disservice, so the post as a whole won’t be as much of a general ‘go see or don’t see’ review. Those elements will be there, but I’ll be a bit more open with spoilers and such.
So if that concerns you, you’ve been warned.
There’s no reason to hide the fact that I’ve always been a big Harry Potter fan. Grew up reading all the books with my Mom, and we’ve seen the movies together too.
I’m not exactly that super-fan who remembers each detail about the series, as that’s a kind of person I’ve met and felt pretty inadequate next to. But I am a huge fan all the same, and I’ve been excited to see Crimes of Grindelwald.
It had a very fun energy to examining wizards in America, rather than Britain, in the 1920’s. But that along wouldn’t have carried the movie quite as well without Eddie Redmayne taking the helm as Newt Scamander.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s always something charming about the copacetic magic of Daniel Radcliffe and his friends evolving from innocent school kids to warriors in a world-changing duel against wizard Hitler.
But after eight movies following those kids, it was pretty refreshing to watch someone new, and Redmayne was definitely something new and refreshing.
I’d highly recommend watching that, because it puts some nice perspective into what made Newt’s hijinx-filled journey through New York so fun.
Crimes of Grindelwald takes things in a vastly different direction than the original Fantastic Beasts. From the first few moments Newt is present, it’s revealed that the fun adventure in Fantastic Beasts was all in service of a young Albus Dumbledore (played fairly well by Jude Law) trying to get the protagonist involved in a fight against Johnny Depp’s older wizard Hitler, Grindelwald.
The second movie takes on a far darker tone and digs way deeper into the lore of the universe (much like the later Harry Potter stories), and this tonal shift colors the first with an interesting bit of hindsight.
Depp’s character perfectly highlights the weird and uncomfortable air this change creates. He’s sometimes doing a goofy Jack Sparrow-esque routine of glancing into windows wide-eyed, but those moments happen concurrently with scenes where he and his people are slaughtering families.
I wasn’t sure I liked the dichotomy being played out until later scenes came up that showed how his almost goofier, more relatable side makes him an enticing figure in the wizarding world, the kind of leader people will follow no matter how monstrous his means to an end are.
It plays well into the rise of fascism undercurrent to the movie (which conveniently takes place before World War II and uses the impending war as a plot device), and in the end I loved the way every character’s story weaved in.
… Except for one of them, which became such a problem for me that I’d almost say it ruined a significant chunk of the movie.
Ezra Miller’s Credence was a huge part of the first movie, as it was revealed the boy who essentially housed a demonic creature was being conditioned by Grindelwald to help destroy the government. As the Pop Culture Detective lays out in his video, part of the tragedy that made Fantastic Beasts so compelling comes when Newt cannot save Credence before he’s torn apart by magic attacks.
It was a really powerful scene…
Until you get to this movie and find out he’s somehow still alive?
Unless I missed something, there’s no explanation as to how or why Credence survived. Just that fact that Newt won’t help the government try to kill him again.
As a result of this early reveal, most of the plot lines for main characters are extremely reiterative of the first movie. They’re searching for Credence before he can be used by Grindelwald for evil.
It made me feel like the first movie mattered far less, and Miller’s portrayal of a far more darkly-influenced Credence was a less compelling compelling subject to save than the scared child of Fantastic Beasts.
My problem wasn’t that his character has developed, it’s that his character should have been dead.
Without that, it felt like so much of the world and it’s characters took too many steps back from their developments.
That was enough of a problem for me that no matter how much I enjoyed the slowly-converging plot threads, the lovely European backdrops and the beasts that made the first movie so fantastic, the overall package felt much more empty.
… Oh, and for some reason all of the advertising focuses a lot on the Deathly Hallows imagery, but I don’t believe any of that showed up in the movie. Just saying.
That’s just my opinion on what really hurt an otherwise great movie, though. But if you have a different take on the issue, feel free to let me know!
Don’t worry, I can already hear all of your complaints. “Three posts in a row about fixing your room up? What’s the deal Jason, why even bother?”
To be fair, until about an hour ago I was not going to put anything up on my blog today. I have two ideas set for tomorrow and an event on Friday, so the rest of my week in writing is planned out and I figured that could be enough of an excuse to skip a day.
But then I realized I would honestly feel terrible about myself if I broke my New Year streak so early.
So this quick n’ dirty post is mostly for me to make sure I don’t have a gap, and if you want to just come back tomorrow when I have a Fire Emblem Heroes banner release and a movie review lined up, I won’t harbor any ill will.
Yesterday I talked about how my room hadn’t changed much since the last time I showed it off. That was early into the cleaning process and it turned out to be a lie. A lot of the tchotchkes taking up space on my countertops hasn’t changed in terms of contents, but the layout is pretty new.
For instance, here’s the top of my TV cabinet — now featuring a fancy new backdrop:
Told you that’s where I was going to put the Naruto poster. Even if I wound up having to move Diancie to make space.
As usual, my line-up of chess club trophies from elementary school remains in-tact. For years I’ve adored the way younger me happened to conveniently win enough trophies in specific placements to create an upscaling pattern, and I always put them up.
Except now in front of the trophies are the Luna wand I got from Universal Studios and a toy car that I happened to pull out of the dust and turmoil underneath that same cabinet when my sister and I pushed it flush against the wall.
We did so to clear some room next to my desk for where this Gladeo computer is going to go. Though it’s admittedly strange to not have that cabinet take up a diagonal space.
Fun fact, on top of that convertible I also found a list of interview questions from when I covered my friends taking part in the Bay Math League way back in middle school.
Now that’s definitely a story for another day. Remind me to tell it, because I actually have some fun throwback material I can use.
Beyond that car, the most notable changes to the collection are that Han Solo is on the left side instead of the right, replaced by Tanuki Mario — who used to be on top of my main clothing drawer.
I also added a few plushies to make the right side into a Pokémon-dedicated corner and it’s one of the best ideas I’ve ever had. I’m considering moving some other posters over there as well to really complete the picture, but I don’t know how much it would mess with the feng shui.
You know, if you believe in that sort of thing.
I took Chinese for three years in high school so I feel like I’m somewhat obliged to try believing in it.
The next most changed surface in the room is that aforementioned main clothing drawer, which is constantly subject to me coming up with new Amiibo configurations:
All things considered this is probably the most stable configuration I’ve tried yet, and I think my Star Wars legos fit in pretty well on this side of the room.
However, this wasn’t the first layout I tried.
Originally I thought about spacing the Amiibo out across both surfaces in a curving manner:
I love the way this set-up looks, but unfortunately it took up too much space.
Saying that is a bit crazy when I realize I have 19 Smash Bros. character Amiibo and there are 73 fighters so far? But still.
Needed some room to fit all my other stuff too.
On the bright side I have an outlet like this to save a photo of the curving configuration, since it is one of my favorites aesthetically.
I think that about covers all the major changes to my room decor starting out 2019. As usual I’m sure it’ll be subject to adjustments as I pick up more useless garbage throughout the year, but for now I’m pretty happy with how it looks!
Hopefully this filler post was worth your time, because it wound up being more fun for me to write than I had expected.
Last year I didn’t really have a proper Halloween. All of the oxygen was sucked out of that particular room by Milo Yiannopolous visiting Cal State Fullerton, which wound up being a massive, exhausting reporting project that I was the lead on.
Nobody around campus got to have a real Halloween that year. As great as it was getting lost in that world, it was a shame that I didn’t get to dress up or do any of that fun, traditional spooky stuff.
As a result I’m a bit out-of-practice when it comes to doing things like pulling together costumes.
So when my friend Mimi invited me to come to a Halloween party tonight, I panicked over how to dress.
And by panicked I mean I got really busy with school and didn’t bother pulling anything new together. Instead I just reused my costume from two years ago and came as the esteemed Willy Wonka.
Gene Wilder’s Willy Wonka of course. I put this thing together two years ago after he passed away, and I’m impressed I still somewhat fit into the women’s size pimp-purple coat that I dug out of a thrift store.
Guess there’s something to this whole exercising regularly thing after all.
I’m kind of writing this in the corner of the party while waiting for my turn at Mario Kart, so I won’t be too verbose. But I figure I should highlight some of the fun things here because it’s a cool little shindig.
For instance, the aforementioned drunk Mario Kart.
I’m not personally drunk because I have a long drive home after this, but basically everyone else is fucked up on every kind of alcohol under the sun.
And we’re playing Mario Kart.
For some reason a decision was made to start the game at the hardest difficulty while playing a Rainbow Road race.
First off, I have to say, it’s incredible that that’s the decision everyone collectively came to. But also it was just plain hilarious watching everyone struggle through it while inebriated.
(I personally got fourth place as my girl Rosalina while everyone else was 10-12, so I got to flex my sober video game muscles a little)
Jackbox came in later, but for me Mario Kart at a massive party full of people who aren’t purely nerds was way more surprising.
Also on the list of party attractions was the food, of course. Mimi put together a lovely spread of chips, candy and cheeses for people to soak up that alcohol with.
Plus there were these lovely cupcakes:
Naturally the costumes are also very important to discuss. Someone is wearing a dragon made out of a cardboard box, and her boyfriend is dressed as Daenerys from Game of Thrones.
There are at least two one-pieces in the room, a cheetah and a Stormtrooper.
Two girls came dressed as an angel and a devil.
We’ve got Miguel from Coco, Lucas from Earthbound, a Slytherin student with the dark mark tattooed on…
It’s a very interesting, eclectic mix that I don’t exactly feel comfortable taking a larger photo of. So maybe check my social media stuff in case I like some pictures Mimi puts out or whatever.
Oh yeah, also there’s a cat. A very sweet cat with big ol’ eyes. Animals are always welcome at a party.
Even though I’m basically meeting everyone at this place tonight, I’d say it’s been a great time! Certainly a wonderful distraction from my Mass Media Ethics assignment and preparing for class registration.
But that said, I’m going to get back to the festivities. I’d wish everyone a happy Halloween, but we’re still a bit early for that.
So happy pre-Halloween?
Happy Saturday night?
I don’t know, I’ll figure it out later. It’s party time right now.
At this point, making new social media accounts really just feels like I’m splitting my soul into more horcruxes.
Yeah as a bunch of my friends have likely now noticed, I made myself an Instagram account today. Deep down it hurts to have further compromised my anti-social media stance of personal morality…
But my boss at Gladeo asked if she could tag me in something on the platform today.
I couldn’t just say no to Michelle, especially after she and her sisters threw us Gladeo Leaguers such a lovely party up at their home in Topanga Canyon yesterday.
Which, as a side note, is why I didn’t have a blog post yesterday. Was busy having some great food, meeting a bunch of folks who I’ve only heard of/met online, and enjoying the view:
Talk about a backyard, am I right?
So yeah… I’ve got an Instagram now. I guess I’ve been meaning to make one for some time considering it’s supposedly a good resource for work-related things. But I’ve been putting it off as long as possible, so for right now it feels like a defeat.
I don’t think I’m going to be using it for too much at the moment. Not even sure if I want to put these blog posts up there, seems like that would be an odd billboard to advertise them on.
Except I might be totally lying and do that later, since I only really use my other social media accounts to advertise this stuff as is.
I don’t know, man! Having new social media things to focus on is always weird and stressful for me, so I’m going to need some time to get used to it. It’s already kind of stressing me out when I flip between Facebook, Twitter and Instagram all within a few seconds of each other looking for updates.
Plus, the color contrast that now exists in my phone’s social media folder doesn’t help.
Why did you have to be a not cool color like everyone else, Instagram. Who died and made you in charge of fancy reds and oranges and purples?
God look at me, yelling at an app on my phone over text. Clearly this is going to be a mistake.
At least until I get past this period of following everyone I know and watching them follow me back in somewhat equal droves. That’s where all of the current frequent little alerts are coming from.
Ah well. I guess while I’m here I can slip in some brief other bits of news that don’t necessarily require another full space to occupy.
For instance, my car is all better! That was the catalyst of my angry, venting post the other day so I think it’s worth saying that that’s doing well now. We got the steering wheel readjusted and I can actually drive it now.
Which means I can go to school and not have to worry about the stress of car troubles on top of everything else. Considering I have a lot of other stressors between an exam and another essay to write for the beginning of this week, I can’t complain about getting that done.
Might I add that it’s amazing to me how that stupid little rant that lasted 300 words and didn’t mean much of anything to me got more likes on this blog than anything I’d written for two weeks prior? You continue to astound me, Internet.
Also, in other news, we’re throwing my Mom’s official birthday party tonight.
Spent a lot of time making the house all fancy for it, so I figured it was worth mentioning. Alongside a second happy birthday shout out for her, of course.
Hopefully all the drunk adults stomping around upstairs won’t make it too much harder to do my assignments considering all of my teachers decided to screw me over the same weekend that we’d been planning this event to happen on for weeks now.
But I digress.
Because I think that’s all I wanted to touch on right now.
So, wish me luck not going too crazy and succumbing to the power of a child wizard prodigy with all these extra horcruxes laying about.
If you want to follow me on Instagram, here’s your chance:
Like I said, not sure what’s going to be going down there just yet. But it could wind up being genuinely important work stuff on occasion.
But honestly just consider it a symptom of me spending the whole day cleaning the house. Don’t have too much to talk about outside of inhaling chemical fumes all afternoon, so I figure it’d be much more engaging if I talked about more content creators I’ve discovered on YouTube over the past few days that have helped make the cleaning more bearable.
That said, welcome to… That thing I just said!
Yeah. Get hyped.
While the previous ‘check out these content creators’ post I did focused primarily on people who talked about comic book lore and writing conventions in cinema, the two people I want to talk about today primarily discuss writing conventions and cinema.
But in more specific details this time around. I swear.
Though I initially saw her content adjacent to the Nostalgia Critic some years ago, I only just recently discovered Lindsay Ellis for her purely solo career here doing video essays.
Video essays which are wonderful and educational in all the best ways.
More than basically anyone I’ve seen before, she takes deep dives into the minutia of film studies, as well as the history and cultural influences behind media that she, primarily, seems to hate in one way or another.
Though not in a CinemaSins-style “let’s just tally up all the shitty things” kind of hate, more of an academic “here’s what works and what doesn’t” kind of hate. Which just so happens to mostly target pieces of popular culture that leave her drinking herself into more of a stupor the longer she talks about them in an unexplained but great little running gag.
There’s just a bunch of good stuff all around, and the sometimes dejected tone of dealing with film studio bs and expectedly horrible comment sections on videos are nice additions to really thought-provoking ideas.
Where Lindsay Ellis seems to approach much of her content with a clear underlying sense of love for the film industry as a whole, Pop Culture Detective takes a vastly more critical look at everything in cinema (as well as television and occasionally video games) that are problematic in relation to one subject:
As a fair warning, these videos hold no punches when it comes to eviscerating popular culture for instilling often toxic values often without intending to. If you love franchises like Star Wars or actors like Tom Cruise and Bruce Willis, it may sting some to watch these sorts of analyses.
Yet, that’s clearly the point. An effective one, at that.
It’s clear throughout multiple videos that the Pop Culture Detective loved many of the movies he discusses to death as a kid. But when he began to look at them in a new light, he was able to pick apart problematic patterns that we can all learn from even if we love the original content.
More often than not I find his content most effective when it delves into those patterns which have grown throughout the history of cinema. For example, his videos on abduction and stalking as abundantly-used tropes were eye-opening in that I frankly didn’t realize just how often they are used.
In fact, no matter what’s being covered, this creator clearly spends an ample amount of time looking into the subjects for their faults and what kind of effect it has on our culture, but at the same time he isn’t just blatantly negging everything and everyone in the industry.
It’s a well-balanced, educated look at film and T.V. through a lens that I don’t often see given as heavy a focus, so definitely check Pop Culture Detective out.
So those are the two content creators I wanted to introduce you all to today. Both with very different approaches at the same goal: Educating the public on more positive ways of producing film and other media.
What do you think of these two? Are you interested in the technical and theoretical sides of filmmaking?
If so, let me know in the comments! Also, if there are any creators whom you believe are worth their weight in views, let me know about them too. I’ll certainly be on the lookout for more things to watch as I continue my pursuit of a clean house during these fleeting final summer days.