Saturday, December 15, 2007

Music Industry says: Me want money!

The RIAA needs to shut up, grow up, and move out of the flipping stone age.

They have been happily untouched by ordinary people who would do such heretical things as:

  • tape TV shows

  • use Tivo

  • copy cassette tapes

  • use a photocopier

  • use a scanner

  • copy vinyl

Now, we can copy CDs; the RIAA can't stand it. They need to realize that this is the way the world works and stop trying to grab every bit of money they can. The sharing of MP3s is a natural response to the practices of the record industry as of late. High priced CDs and gouging for concert seats. The people are speaking out. The industry needs to let go and realise that CDs are being assimilated into the list I just gave. People will copy - people will share. Instead, the industry could use MP3s sharing as a way of advertising. Releasing certain MP3s into the net and having them spread around before the whole album is available for download. Whatever the plan that is used, the RIAA needs adaptation, not legislation.

Friday, November 30, 2007

New Mexico, Shut Up!

Apparently, New Mexico has a problem with genius.

in response to USA Today's Article: Some Not Laughing at New Mexico's Ugly Alien tourist ads All of the quotes in this entry are from this article.

" "New Mexico has a lot to offer — we don't need to bring our standards down," said Ken Mompellier, head of the convention and visitors bureau in Las Cruces, the state's fast-growing second-largest city, which has refused to use the alien ads to bolster local tourism pitches, as it normally would. "

Right, so having a hilarious campaign is bringing your standards down? Comedy sells. It's not like the new campaign features a scantily clad woman lying in the beautiful New Mexico desert with the tag: "New Mexico, Hottest Place In The Nation"

"...And the things I'm hearing from people, some of it is very negative." -Mompellier

There are people who will say negative things about anything.

List of The Famous and The Historical about which "people" have said "negative" "things":

  • Lord Byron
  • Steven Spielburg
  • Ernest Hemingway
  • Frank Miller
  • Martin Luther King Jr.
  • The Cotton Gin
  • The 13th Amendment to the United States of America's Constitution
  • Eating Food
  • Using Electric Instruments (i.e. guitar, piano, organ, violin, etc.)
  • Freedom of Speech
  • Taichovsky
  • Dancing
  • and, yes, your mother

But this is what bugs me most:

" Chris Stagg, a marketing executive at Taos Ski Valley who serves on the commission, said Saatchi's creative team might come back to the panel's next meeting with a "less harsh" version of the campaign.
Aliens are fine, he said, but do they need to be creatures "that look like they're going to suck your brains out?" "

Okay, that is the reason that these ads are funny and attractive. The juxtapostion of the tourism scenes and the hideous aliens. In an interview by Ben Kharakh at Gary Rudoren, Author, Rudoren, an author of the book Comedy by the Numbers is quoted:

"Absolutely! Adding surprise and juxtaposition in your design as well as your comedy keeps the audience on its edge. If you telegraph humor or if you make your architectural moves obvious, you lose a great creative opportunity in my opinion. I love visiting a building that reveals itself to me more as I move through it and observe it. I love humor that keeps me guessing and takes unusual choices."

There's a good point! Also, consider Gary Larson's ingenious comic strip The Far Side. Much of the hilarity of Larson lies in brilliant juxtaposition. As in the episode where ketchup bottles are watching a horror film. The film shows a ketchup bottle broken with its contents spilling out. A mother kethup bottle is turned, talking to her young son saying, "Don't worry, it's not real ketchup." THAT'S funny! and THAT'S Juxtaposition and THAT'S why these aliens are ingenious.

These alien ads have won an award for a good reason. They are great. They remind me of Super Bowl ads that usually feature some sort of rediculous juxtaposition. To spell it out: a tourist bicycling through New Mexico is not funny; a hideous alien sucking the brains out of astronauts is not funny - but a hideous alien bicycling through New Mexico, THAT'S funny!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Why Superman Sucks

Superman is defined by his superness. He has super speed, super strength, and super suckiness - to name a few.

I will admit that Superman has merit. He has a relatively cool costume. In the face of modern, capeless super heroes he boldly sports a red embellishment to his costume. And I can't deny the coolness of getting your power from the sun. It's also pretty bad ass the way really big, really heavy things can fall on him and he either catches them, or leaps from the wrekage unscathed.

The most bad ass thing that sets him apart from all the other super heroes, is that his alter-ego is not a super hero. All other heroes wear a mask to protect their normal selves from their super counter part. Superman, however, is super all the time. "Clark Kent" isn't even his real name. He hides his true self to protect his super alter-ego. That's pretty bad ass.

But that is the only truly redeeming feature of Superman.

Superman has the power I've always wanted: The Power Of Convenience. His abilities are exactly that of whatever is convenient at the moment. I remember when he had X-Ray vision that allowed him to see through walls. Next thing I knew, that X-Ray vision could burn holes in things. Oh, wait, no, that's heat vision. Wait...oh, he now has heat vision and X-Ray vision. Ok. What? oh! so he can also see really far and through solid objects. No, no I guess he can control his X-Ray vision so that he can see through some things and not through others. Got it.

Or how about Kryptonite. It use to just remove his powers. He became an ordinary dude and an assailant could actually hurt him. Now it makes him, I'm sorry, it completely incapacitates him. it just makes him weak enough that he can struggle to escape. Sorry, my mistake, Superman is actually paralyzed by the effects of kryptonite until the heroin can save him or until she is injured by the villain. I'm confused, I guess kryptonite's real effect is that it can kill Superman if he is exposed to it to long...unless he's trapped and needs to be rescued...but sometimes he has the strength to push the kryptonie away. The kryptonite always takes effect from 20 feet away...30 feet...5 has to be in clark Kents pocket.

On the convenience of plot note: What the hell is black kryptonite? email me if you know cuz I sure don't. and when did kryptonite come in red?
Is christmas evil on krypton?

Since we're talking about powers, let's talk about how LAME superman's powers are.

1. Impervious to Attack

Superman's greatest strength as a hero is his greatest weakness as a bad ass.
Look out! Oh, Wow! That car hit him and he's okay! Look out! gosh, that train hit him and he's okay.
Well, whadoyaknow, that building fell on him. Big surprise! he's okay!
Look, bullets don't work. Oh no, look out. A knife. Nevermind.
Hey, have you seen who won that hot dog eating competition? Superman? well, duh the bazooka didn't hurt him. did you see the article? That's some real news.

Superman's powers just get boring after a while. How long can you sit on the edge of your seat wondering what new thing won't hurt our valiant hero.

2. Super Strength

Superman is so strong that he can destroy anything on earth with various amounts of effort that range from "I can do that with two hands tied behind my back" to "whew, pass the lemonade, I kinda broke a sweat." The only thing he can't destroy is anything the writers make up for a particular story. Convenient.
This also gets old.
Oh look, he smashed/lifted/punched/kicked/carried/threw/smushed that thing! Oh, wait, thats idolatomantoriam! The only metel in the universe Superman can't break...except for that other thing from last week called marghchatite when he needed Lois to save him.

3. Flight

First of all, Superman never used to be able to fly. He could leap tall buildings in a single bound. The effect of "flying" was created when he jumped so far and fast that it gave the appearance of flight. Convenience dictates he can fly. And how does he fly in space...does he generate his own gravitational pull?

4. Heat Vision, X-Ray Vision, Super Hearing, Super Speed

Okay, so if Superman has all of these powers, how does he ever lose to an opponent? He should be able to hear them coming, see them if they are hidden, and blow them away with heat or get away fast. That goes for all of his other random abilities too! Super lungs? blow them away! Super-Anything, kick their collective ass!

In conclusion, Superman makes very little sense, can be downright boring or predictable, and has really really annoying villains. I won't even go there. I stopped watching saturday morning cartoons a while ago; I would like some good villains and dialogue.