Friday, November 6, 2015

Media of the Month: October 2015, "Sometimes I Forget to Finish the Titles of My Blogs Until I Publish Them"

Well this was a pretty varied month. And by "pretty varied" I mean schizophrenic in the extreme. Anyway. I don't really care about any of this because Fallout 4 releases in like four days so EEEEEEEEEE. 

Feeders & Eaters
Neil Gaiman

This was disturbing as hell, but also really good. Gaiman does great horror. I can't really go into too much detail because...well, it's a pretty short comic and I wouldn't want to ruin it for you. Artwork is sketchy, drab, and unsettling. The other stories are okay too, but "Feeders and Eaters" is by far the best part. 


I love this game. So trancelike. It's not about the whole 3d thing like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, it's just a nice linear "how good of a combo/line can you set" kind of game. It's addicting, simple, and punishing. 

Star Wars: Battlefront

I liked Jar Jar more. This demo makes me feel like a stormtrooper, and I don't mean that as  any sort of compliment to the game's immersiveness. Overall it's just incredibly bland and frustrating, and not fun. I actually reinstalled CS:GO and am having more fun with that. 

The Seems: The Glitch in Sleep
John Hulme and Michael Wexler

Some interesting cosmological stuff re: the nature of evil and the universe as a machine—god as watchmaker? Deus ex machina? Lots of metaphors brought to life in a very Terry Pratchett manner, which I liked. Shades of Artemis Fowl, H.I.V.E., etc. in the whole "kid as super secret agent in a magical world" kind of deal. The overall setting is cool, if oddly familiar for a reason I can't pin down. The characters were weak--they all seemed like caricatures of teens and kids. Particularly in their language, with phrasings that just felt…off. The writing style felt a bit stiff overall. Not bad, just stiff. Some good jokes/puns like "At the height of the limbo contest" but often felt like they were just there to be…there. I'm not a huge fan, but as a kid I would have been. 

Dead Man's Hand

Weird West short story collection? Count me in! Seanen McGuire, Tobias Bucknell, and Joe Lansdale were the standout authors in this collection. Overall, a lot of varied takes on the weird west, some top-notch, others just average, but all enjoyable. I went in expecting an interconnected world, but was okay with each author getting their own vision. Also, weird west is SO BROAD—there were revenge stories, superhero stories…

Winesburg, Ohio
Sherwood Anderson

Very ethereally sad. Shades of Southern Gothic, like Faulkner only less pretentious. About disappointment? Longing? Or something? Lots of uses of "dark" and "grey" and "dull" and "drab" and "plain." I think the point is made. Winesburg Ohio sucks. This book is beautiful but incredibly depressing. 

The Duellists

This is a movie that you watch for accurate duels. That's the main draw. The plot isn't amazing, but the dueling scenes are quite good. Yeah. Not too much to say about this other than that as a glimpse into late-1700s early-1800s duels and military customs it's pretty cool. Oh, and yeah. The characters, costumes, and cinematography is excellent. 


Why aren't there more medieval horror movies? Sauna and Black Death are the only two I can think of, and there should be way more. This is philosophical, and grimy, and the characters actually feel like people. I don't usually love movies with subtitles, but this was great. Beautifully shot, realistic characters, dreamlike, nightmarish, very slow and deliberate and incredibly uncomfortable. Sauna is the Renaissance-period Let the Right One In. "Wash your sins." 

Chivalry: Medieval Warfare

Well. This game is... A thing. First-person close-quarters medieval combat. It's a bit janky, and the community is either helpful or incredibly douchey. It's quite fun, but it has a lot of issues. If you like CS:GO but wish it had more melee combat, this is for you. There's a great deal of strategy involved in timing your attacks and defense, in knowing when to rush in and when to stay back... I do wish it didn't try to shoehorn free-to-play aspects into a game that you have to pay real dollars for, but whatever. It's just cosmetic stuff. 

Hotline Miami

Trancelike, brutal, and addicting. I love going in stealthily and then suddenly grabbing a shotgun and going crazy. Watching plans go haywire. It's like a bad drug trip or any number of other tired comparisons.