Friday, 15 May 2009

The Signs of the Geek using X-Men Origins: Wolverine

As ever, I'm embarassingly late on the subject of today's blog post, it's not my fault, I've had shit loads of work to do (curse you!) and World of Warcraft to play (love you!) and on the plus side it makes me look a bit less like a band wagon jumping whore. So today's subject is X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Yes, i know everybody's talking about Star Trek now, but this isn't a film review, this is a review review. In particular it's a review of io9's review of X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Normally I love io9, sure, it has its fair share of 'George Lucas actually constructed a time machine using the billions he's forced from the movie-going masses, gone to the time and effort to find out where I lived when I was seven, gone back in time despite risks to the time-space continuum and his future fortune and savagely raped and sexually abused me in front of my gran leaving us both mentally scarred for ever' crew, but there are often as many sane voices as there are ravenous fanboys/girls who offer moderate commentary like 'well, it wasn't as good as I'd hoped' or 'perhaps my fanatical devotion to this film/TV series/comic book character is a little like a mental illness and I retract that death threat'. Surprisingly io9's writers often demonstrate that they are capable of offering relatively balanced assessments of up and coming sci fi based media, even if it's laced with the inevitable sarcastic undertones particular to the genre (see also T4 Presenters in a future blog post).

Sadly the io9 review of X-Men Origins: Wolverine was all too predictable. Like Bruce Banner and his alter ego the Hulk, the rational side of io9 struggles on a day to day basis with its inner raging geek. For poor Bruce Banner (not the Ultimate Universe one, he's a twat) the warning signs are the white rage in his eyes, greening of the skin, rapidly increased heart rate, ripped clothes and unstoppable strength, endurance and invulnerability. The signs of the raging geek are only a little more subtle, but include misplaced belief that he/she is a much better script writer/director/CG animator etc. than those involved in the film, extreme passive-agressiveness, requirement to suffix any positive statement with something negative, closet conservatism that tends to become overt in discussions of media, feeble attempts to use humour to appear aloof and blatant disregard for proper use of hyperbole.

While the Hulk leaves behind him a trail of smashed cars and crumbling buildings the, the geek leaves behind him a trail of snide remarks, unfortunate allegories and the stench of simmering resentment so let's see if you can spot these signs in the field. It's important, one day your credibility could count on it. Read the review here and then see if you can fit the descriptions below to specific parts of the text. If you get them all right you win an exclusive Charity Edition Star Wars: The Clone Wars Blu Ray disc featuring commentary by select George Lucas' rape victims.
  • Metaphors that are supposed to sound clever butcome across like GCSE level creative writing.
  • Focusing on a non-plothole when there are plenty of genuine plotholes to pick apart.
  • Attempting to criticise an aspect of the film that inadvertantly makes it sound really good.
  • Implying that source material is infallible when it clearly isn't.
  • Saying something that at first sounds like a compliment, but, cleverly, is actually a criticism.
  • Not understanding certain plot elements but still criticising them (note that this thoroughly unacceptable for a so-called geek).
  • Monty Python reference.
  • Drug requirement reference.
  • Mistaking fictional characters for real people.

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