Today Nintendo is having their big media event. (No new hardware yet, just details on Super Mario Galaxy 2, Monster Hunter, Dragon Quest 9, Metroid Other M, of which they said "after you finish playing this, you're going to feel like you know Samus in way that you've never known her before." (cue the peanut gallery) and a few other minor games.)
Tomorrow is the Penny Arcade book signing at the local B&N.
Of course then i had to go and detract from the general level of geekiness by watching Transformers 2 last night. In my defense, _i_ was not the one who decided to order it off of Netflix :) Also, i tried to redeem myself by reading along with Topless Robot's Transformers 2 FAQ at the same time.
shelleycat pointed out something that Topless Robot seemed to miss (or maybe i just didn't get forwarded that post by jmpava =) Michael Bay seemed to be trying to rip off every other big movie he could. Meteors impacting on cities like a couple other disaster movies, watching the giant ship turn up on its end and sink like Titanic, and Jetfire was highly reminiscent of Pirates of the Caribbean. There were a couple other things that she pointed out that i'm not remembering now. Oh, and part of the final (very extended) action bit was lifted right from the last Harry Potter book (i guess he didn't have time to wait for it to be made into a movie first.) Oh yeah, and Gremlins.
Pretty much the only source that Michael Bay didn't rip off was that old 80's cartoon with transforming robots in it =P
So the movie starts with Megatron leading a Decepticon death squad. They hunt down a group of Autobots. The Autobots are defeated one by one, and Megatron pins the last of them down and asks "do you have any last words Autobot scum?" (or words to that effect) before coldbloodedly shooting him in the head.
Oh wait, sorry, it was _Optimus_Prime_ leading an _Autobot_ death squad to go execute some helpless _Deceptions_. Just got the names confused a little, sorry.
I spent most of the movie being alternately bored and confused. I have so much more emotionally invested in the Transformers than GI Joe because i watched the one so much more than the other, but honestly if i had to sit through one of the two movies again i'd go with GI Joe. Transformers 2 was so bad it was hard to even care. There were only six transformers that i could consistently recognize. Optimus Prime (because he was blue and red) Bumblebee (because he was yellow) the Racist Twins (because they were brightly colored, really annoying, and had easily recognized racial stereotyping all over them) the Fallen (because of the funky head) and Arcee. Note that the character who appeared for about 10 seconds and had one line of dialog before she was brutally murdered (because Michael Bay is a misogynist and hates Transformers fans) was one of the six most recognizable transformers. Except for when one of then was a plane i even had difficulty telling which one was Megatron and which one was Starscream, not to mention the numerous other nameless Decepticons that kept showing up all over the place, and the rest of the Autobot cast really wasn't any better.
(In the very first fight scene we both kept going "is that an Autobot? Or is that Decepticon? Or is that just a car? That car got cut in half by a Transformer, so it must have been a Transformer too? I guess it was a Decepticon? Unless they guy who cut it in half was a Decepticon?" etc.)
So i couldn't tell who was what, and anytime any action started up i could tell what the hell was going on, and they seemed to be teleporting all over the place without explanation (except for the one time where they teleported with the explanation of "we're going to teleport now" and everyone both in the movie and in the audience said "how the fuck does that work?" and the movie just shrugs its shoulders and says "i dunno.")
Even the military seems to have perfected this technology. At the end Starscream (i could tell it was him because he was a plane at the time) has done some kind of EMP that disabled all the military communication equipment in the area as well as all the military satellites. (Except for one civilian's cellphone which is totally unaffected and everyone both in the movie and in the audience said "how the fuck does that work?" and the movie just shrugs its shoulders and says "i dunno.") Or maybe the communication satellites being down part was due to Soundwave, at least i'm kind of guessing it was Soundwave, it wasn't made clear.
In any case, the military needs to know what's going on, so they send out a reconnaissance drone plane to see. We spend (i'm guessing) twenty minutes watching our "brave" (presumably) heroes "fighting" (or at least flailing around a lot) the "enemy" (or possibly themselves, it's really hard to tell) before this flying drone gets close enough to give the military a video feed. The military says OMG! Something is wrong! We should send in reinforcements! We get to watch a couple minutes footage of all kinds of military planes being launched and amphibious transports landing tanks on beaches (does the military keep tanks loaded on amphibious transports all over the world ready to launch on a moment's notice just on spec?) and then five minutes later they're suddenly all at the scene of the battle. Here's a hint guys, next time you need some information don't send a flying reconnaissance drone, send a reconnaissance tank. You'll get your intel back a lot faster that way.
And then the Fallen kills all the military that just showed up with his magic staff, and then Optimus Prime kills the Fallen and all the other Deceptions, and it's all over. It takes just a little longer in the movie than it does to read that sentence. With no extended fight, no dramatic reversals, and just about no dialog (at least not that i could understand anyways.) It's just long enough to make you expect a real fight scene before the fight is suddenly all over. If i just spoiled the movie for you and made you not want to watch it, you're welcome.
I kind of liked the first Transformers movie. It was the first new Transformers movie in twenty years, and even if i hated the character design even then at least it had Optimus Prime's voice, and the plot kinda held together if you squinted at it. Transformers 2.... well it still has Optimus Prime's voice. So the good parts of Transformers 2 could be perfectly replicated by spending a couple minutes playing with an Optimus Prime soundboard.
I'm not sure if i can even summon up enough emotion to hate the movie. There were certainly really stupid elements. All the stuff above, the piss jokes, the vomit jokes, the fart jokes, the testicle jokes, the humping the leg jokes, and lots more besides, but if they'd been in a movie that i cared in the least about i probably would have been furious. As it is, it's just "OMG that was stupid" and then it moves on. There are movies you love and movies you love to hate, but what about a movie that makes you feel totally apathetic?
Of course Topless Robot does a better job of ripping the movie up one side and down the other, as well as explaining why it's not even a real Transformers movie, in the main review of it.