Category Archives: lasers

Beloved franchises…that actually mostly suck

We have a lot of long-running entertainment franchises these days that have developed rabid fan followings. With increasing frequency, these franchises crap out sequel after dreadful sequel that are instantly thrown on the pile of loathsome offerings that make us wonder why we ever liked this shit. This usually occurs with film franchises, television tends to get cancelled quickly when it goes to seed, but sometimes this phenomenon occurs within other media. Here now, I take a look at some of these franchises that were terrible far longer than they were good.

HELLRAISER

Look, an Ouya!

Look, an Ouya!

I loves me some Hellraiser, it was one of the most innovative and imaginatively brutal horror series around…briefly. There are nine Hellraiser movies. The first one is great. The second one is quite good. The third one…happened. The fourth one was better than it should have been. The rest were a dumpster fire. Cenobites that throw CDs, kung-fu cowboy demons, and scripts that had Hellraiser stuff hastily tacked on in order to retain the license have made this franchise a fucked-out shell of the genius it once was. One of the sequels even involves Hellraiser being just a big video game…that’s clever, sadly Frankie Munez must’ve been been too busy to be in that one. Too bad Lance Henriksen wasn’t. It’s ok Lance, we still love you.

This series is set for a reboot soon, under the guidance of creator Clive Barker. This is one of the few times I’ve been looking forward to a reboot. Seriously, CDs? Who throws CDs? Maybe the reboot will have a guy throw MP3s…not sure how that would kill people.

Play Freebird...you piece of shit.

Play Freebird…you piece of shit.

HIGHLANDER

I can't find it in myself to make fun of this, it's just too cool.

I can’t find it in myself to make fun of this, it’s just too cool.

Highlander was awesome. It had a rockin’ Queen soundtrack, cool swordfights, and an interesting concept that stirred the imagination. Then Highlander 2 happened. Then everything else Highlander happened. That was a shame. The Highlander sequels involved aliens, wizards, time travel, the Syfy Channel, all kinds of horseshit that’s known to ruin franchises. There have been 4 theatrical releases, a made for tv movie, two television series, an animated series, and an anime movie. Also, the first movie was good.

Some people really liked the TV series, well, the first one, not “The Raven”, but there are also people who enjoy having entire fists shoved up their assholes. Seriously, look it up. Whole human fists.

Just like a fist up the ass, Highlander well overstayed its welcome and ruined all the goodwill it had earned, making us wonder why we ever liked it in the first place. Oh yeah, the Queen soundtrack.

THIS, on the other hand...

THIS, on the other hand…

SONIC THE HEDGEHOG

Radical!

Radical!

Man, Sonic the Hedgehog was cool. The running fast, the loop-de-loops, the snarky attitude, the…blast processing, it was great. Then the 90’s ended. Sonic hasn’t had a really good game since Sonic and Knuckles, once the days of 2D platformers ended, Sonic found himself a man without a country. Unable to hang in an era of 3D games and polygons, Sonic hasn’t fared well, yet we just can’t seem to stop making bad attempts to make him seem relevant again, despite more failures than successes.  As painful as it is, it may be time for Sonic to hang up his red sneakers. There’s a farm upstate he could go live on. There’s room to run around there, and other hedgehogs to play with…he’ll be much happier.

Yeah...shit got weird.

Yeah…shit got weird.

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN

Yaaay!

Yaaay!

Pirates of the Caribbean was a great movie. It was a fun, lighthearted adventure full of interesting characters and cool action. Then they made more of them, and Johnny Depp owes me six hours of my life back. The first sequel, Dead Man’s Chest, wasn’t too bad, but then At World’s End happened, and we were subjected to what felt like days of Jack Sparrow looking for a fucking peanut, and the filmmakers desperately trying to make Elizabeth Swan seem like a likable and important main character, as opposed to an insufferable bag of shit. I had actually forgotten about the latest entry in the series, and I paid money to see it in a theatre, which means I left my house at some point. 25% success rate is not a good number to base your series on.

When I said "grow a personality",  you didn't have to be a dick about it!

When I said “grow a personality”, you didn’t have to be a dick about it!

These are just some of examples that jumped to mind in my sweaty, gravy-induced stupor. I’m sure there are plenty of others out there that eluded me. I contemplated Heroes, but since I haven’t finished it yet, it’d be based on hearsay, and that’s just unamerican, so sound off and tell me some franchises you think were more shit than shinola!

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It all turns to crap…

Hello readers. Tonight, I think I’ll scream and swear about things. You may be familiar with this concept. If so, then it won’t come as too much of a shock.

First off though, the obligatory picture of Katherine Heigl in a bra…this time with real-time bouncing action!

Now that that’s out of the way, it’s time for me to go all old-man crazy. You see, it seems that the world is conspiring to take everything I love and make me hate it. I know things change sometimes, but this should be a subtle and painless process. It should not involve violently shitting on the target audience. Allow me to explain.

Star Wars

Now I know it’s become a national pastime to crap on Star Wars, what with all the “wah wah George Lucas raped my childhood” bullshit. I’ve always defended the prequels, even though they weren’t as good as the original trilogy, I thought they were fun movies, and good enough to not accuse the director of sexual abuse. I’ve even enjoyed the Clone Wars cartoon, that is, until halfway through the third season.

Halfway through the third season, they introduced a new character (though that’s a stretch) called Savage Opress. Yes, dumb name, I know. Savage was Darth Maul’s brother, you could tell because he’s basically Darth Maul, only yellow instead of red.

Super fucking creative.

At the end of the season, it is hinted that Darth Maul is still alive, and Savage must go on a quest to find him. We are then left with an entire season to try to forget about this before it’s resolved. Now I’ve not always been the biggest fans of where they’ve taken the Star Wars continuity with the prequel era stuff, but I’ve been ok with it, this though…oy. It’s as if the writers saw that George Lucas took a shit on the floor, so they tried to clean the shit by pissing on it. It’s pretty much a unanimous opinion that Darth Maul was handled badly in Phantom Menace and had too little screen time, but was done was done. That was the thing I always liked about Star Wars (the movies, not the Expanded Universe), dead was dead.

Ok...but how does it poop?

So after what was a mostly painful to watch season, we’re treated with the season finale that involves Savage finding his brother, now crazy with a robot spider body (at least it wasn’t a centipede I guess…), and taking them back to their denmonther who fixes his brain and makes him a pair of cyber legs…WITH MAGIC.

Lieutenant Dan, you got new legs!

I don’t get it, I really don’t.

Comics

I’m a big comic book fan, always have been. My local comic shop recently stopped carrying single issues, in favor of more gaming stuff (more on this later) and graphic novels, and since then I’ve given up cold turkey. Let’s talk about why.

Spider-Man has always been one of my all-time favorite superheroes, and of his supporting cast, Venom was by and large my favorite. This is a common feeling as he’s probably the most popular spider-villain of all time…so Marvel decided to fuck with him. Now, I understand that things change and characters have to evolve, but what a ridiculous back-and-forth Venom has gotten. Eddie Brock, the human half of Venom was diagnosed with terminal cancer, so he sold the Venom symbiote. This led to Mac Gargan, formerly known as the Scorpion, becoming the new Venom for several years. Naturally, the fans still loved Eddie, so what does Marvel do? They put him in a reverse colored costume, and called him Anti-Venom. Stop laughing, I’m not kidding!

Stupid, lazy, or clever? You decide!

But people still wanted Venom, so what does Marvel, in their infinite wisdom do? They put the Venom symbiote on long-time supporting cast member Flash Thompson, who becomes black-ops army Venom…still not kidding.

Hey Spidey, wanna play Call of Duty?

I liked this at first, because I thought it’d go away, but it’s still going! Anyway, this is all personal opinion, at least they didn’t mess with an icon like Superman, right?

Popped collar too? Why, Superman, why?

Superman was a timeless character, and his costume and his personality reflected this.  But somehow DC decided that they wanted a more modern look without the red trunks, and a more cynical attitude. A Superman that took no shit and was willing to kill. They might as well just call him XTREME Superman and have him chugging Red Bull and rocking out to dubstep.

Fuck it, I’ll just go play some D&D…

Dungeons & Dragons

Shit! This too?!? Great. So not long ago, Hasbro released a new edition of Dungeons and Dragons. And edition that wiped the slate clean. An edition that replaced some of the old standbys with stuff that seemed straight out of World of Warcraft. An edition that nobody wanted. Along the way, someone decided that about half of the stuff that everyone knew and loved would be left out and, feeling so distraught without it, the players would shell out additional money to get it back in future supplement books. Pretty sneaky, sis. But for the main book, they had to fill the gaps with something…whhat’s a good replacement for the good old Gnomes…

That dragon has boobs, the nerds will love it!

The backlash on this was enormous, so much so that the previous edition was cleaned up, polished, and released by another company under the name Pathfinder and, in a shocking turn of events that has never happened in the five decades of Dungeons and Dragons, has replaced it in popularity.

But when I play it, I always hear "Careless Whisper" in my head.

That’s enough for now, I’m feeling old and tired, and should probably take my Geritol, so until next time, get off of my lawn!

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