Archive for April, 2013

This Week in Media – 4/8/13 to 4/14/13

April 14, 2013

Ok, I’m going to try and post little tidbits on the media I’ve consumed each week.  The things that amused me and the things that pissed me off.  Here we go.

 

Battlestar Galactica

I Am Amused (for Now):

Ok so this is old media but I just started watching this show.  I am consistently late to the party on television shows and video games but the reason I put this show off has a bit of a story.  I loved Stargate SG-1.  I loved it and, to a lesser extent, I enjoyed Stargate Atlantis.  When I heard there was going to be a new Stargate show, I was excited.  Then Stargate Universe premiered and I ragequit the show after maybe 5 episodes just waiting for something to happen.  At the time, the buzz I heard from people who actually liked Stargate Universe was that it was just like Battlestar Galactica.  I swore to never watch Battlestar Galactica. Ever.

Cut to over a month ago.  I am at my friends’ house (Joe and Jill) and they pull out the Battlestar Galactica board game.  I am slightly skeptical but it ends up being really fun.  I tell them the above paragraph.  They insist that I give BSG a shot and that it is not like Stargate Universe.  They loaned me the miniseries and Season 1 on DVD.

I consumed the miniseries in one sitting almost without pausing it.  This week, I started watching Season 1.  Two episodes in, here are my impressions: It’s a dark show.  If I was still in the depths of depression like days of old, I would ditch the series fast.  However, the show does have its humor and the acting is terrific.  The sense of paranoia that is starting to infect the cast of characters is interesting.  If I had to pick a favorite character, I don’t think I could.  I think it would be between Admiral Adama and President Laura Roslin.  I don’t know if I’ll stick with the show but we’ll see.

 

WWE RAW 4/8/13

A lot of people who know me, know that I enjoy watching professional wrestling.  This week, Raw aired from New Jersey which was my home of 9 years.

I Am Amused:

– Fandango continues to amuse me.  He’s quickly into a grade A heel that everybody can love to hate.  However, his cheesy elevator music entrance theme is actually maddeningly catchy as heard here.  In fact, it is such an ear worm that I have found myself humming at work while collating.  Which is why I can’t blame the Jersey crowd for what they did on Monday.  I was nearly in tears laughing as thousands of people in the crowd continued to hum Fandango’s theme as his match began.  In fact, they encouraged the crowd to do it again after the show went off air.  Oh New Jersey, you’re such trolls.

I am Pissed Off:

– I am a big fan of The Miz whether he is a face or a heel.  In fact, I used to steal one of his lines as a sign off.  He won the Intercontinental title last Sunday in a Wrestlemania preshow match which pissed me off already.  This Monday, he lost the title in a short match right back to Wade Barrett. What’s the point?

 

Gabriel Iglesias: Aloha Fluffy

I Am Amused:

– The show was hilarious.  I always enjoy Gabriel Iglesias as he is a very funny comedian.  However, like a lot of the great comics, he throws truth in among the funny.  I found his take on being a step-dad interesting and his impressions on teenage boys pretty dead on.  He also gave a great window into how things really are in Hawaii and Saudi Arabia/The Middle East.  Sure, it’s not in depth but it’s nice to hear that things aren’t always as CNN or Fox News portrays it.  Watch the special if you can, it just premiered on Comedy Central.

 

Other stuff that I watched this week that I enjoyed that I’ll just name: – Wrestlemania
– Supercard of Honor VII
– Arrow
– The Cinema Snob: Beyond the Valley of the Dolls
– Gravity Falls
– Colbert Report: Bill Clinton

 

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Sabin the Sorceror

April 11, 2013

(Sabin the Sorceror is the character I created for a version of D&D I play with friends on a forum)

Sabin the Sorceror grew up in a small town called Sodor outside of Lona.  Sabin did not care for this name or his family who seemed largely indifferent to him. His parents were poor pig farmers.  He struggled through life with his family for as long as he could but set off on his own as soon as he felt he was big enough.  At around age 12 he was living in a meager structure that he had built himself just out side of Lona.  He knew that he was destined for greatness and was going to prove it.  He has not seen his parents since before he left.

The only thing of home he took with him is his father’s looks.  He has a tallish, thin and awkward frame.  It is kind of like being the lovechild of a broom and a scarecrow.  Such looks, his poor background and even poorer present circumstances caused a lot of local kids to mess with him.  He grew resentful of the upper class of Lona and especially the magic users.  Sabin wasn’t really able to physically defend himself.  His tormentors had the numbers advantage and used that advantage ruthlessly.

All of that changed when his powers first made themselves known via an explosion of fire that sent his attackers running.  This changed everything.  He probably would have terrorized the noble houses of Lona and the MagiAcademy that he was too poor to attend but life intervened.  A man named Brofka basically bullied Sabin into accepting an apprenticeship at Brofka’s modest cottage.  Brofka used to be a big shot at the MagiAcademy before massive gambling debts had caused him to leave the academy in quiet shame.

Brofka’s sorceror training was brutal to say the least.  The training left plenty of bruises to heal and cuts that became scars. A particular favorite activity of Brofka’s was to break a rib to test Sabin’s concentration.  Brofka’s tough training and tougher verbal berating started to do its work and Sabin’s skills got better and felt better about himself.  Sabin began to use his considerable ego as a shield.  He believed he was the best because he felt he had to be the best to succeed.

Contempt for Brofka turned into grudging respect and then grudging friendship.  Brofka eventually did not make instead of living in the lean to out back and let Sabin sleep on the floor in the house.  This was a vast improvement and actually a deep honor coming from Brofka.  Training grew more serious until Brofka graduated Sabin by kicking him out of the house.  It was friendlier than it sounds.  He has still visited Brofka from time to time.

Sabin has been adventuring since then and occasionally participating in duels with other magic users.  People would remember Sabin because he makes sure to repeat his name often and besides that, he blows things up a lot.  While he may come off as arrogant sometimes, really he is driven by a fierce determination to be remembered and to prove himself. He’s here to show the world that his destiny will not be denied. While he is a bit of a show off, he’s definitely dependable and not totally self-absorbed.

Brofka the Wise

April 11, 2013

If Sabin wanted to be exhausted and covered in mud, he could have stayed back home in Sodor.  Sometimes herding pigs sounded like a pleasant alternative to dealing with Brofka the Wise.  Brofka the Bully was a better nickname but Sabin dared not say it out loud.  Of course, he had said it out loud earlier that morning when Brofka had woken him up before sunrise.  Sabin was sporting a bruise on his left cheek as a result.

 

The rain was still drizzling down on Sabin and the surrounding yard but that was fine since it had been pouring earlier.  Thankfully, it was midsummer so the rain wasn’t cold especially since Sabin was soaked to the bone.  By this point, Sabin was taking any wins he could get.

 

With all this water around, of course Brofka had Sabin working on his fire magic.  He was supposed to be lighting fires but the most he could get was puffs of steam.  It was really hard to concentrate with all of the rain and it was well past time for lunch.  Brofka had made it clear that he could not come inside and eat until he lit a fire.  Sometimes he hated that old man.

 

He turned from glaring at Brofka’s house to focus on the little lean to he had built so the wood was at least not getting directly rained on.  He pointed the palm of his right hand towards the wood and brought up his will, focused it and attempted to will the logs to light on fire.  All he received was a slightly encouraging billow of steam.  It was bigger than the little puffs he was getting earlier.  He sighed and sat on a damp stump and wondered if this would ever work.  He had done it before but often it was not on purpose.

 

The back door to the house opened suddenly and Sabin jumped to his feet and pointed his palm at the wood.  He could hear Brofka groan in frustration behind him.

 

“Have you not set the wood on fire yet?  It’s been two hours!” He bellowed from the doorway.

 

“I’m trying!” Sabin responded roughly without looking at his mentor. “Sir.” He added as an afterthought.

“Trying isn’t going to cut it; actually succeeding is the only way you’re getting a midday meal. Well, at this rate it will be a mid-afternoon meal.”

 

Sabin only tried to ignore the old man and focus his will on the logs again.  Brofka put the hood of his cloak up and walked towards Sabin.  He was carrying a very familiar short stick.  Sabin tried to ignore this as well and desperately tried to focus on setting the logs ablaze.  Of course, Brofka was so close that he was really hard to ignore.

 

Brofka laughed and pointed at the lean to and the logs. “It seems you’re a better carpenter than you are a sorcerer.  Believe me, that is not saying much.  Can you even get anything more than steam?”

 

Sabin turned to glare at Brofka. “Sir, I lit it earlier.”  He said simply. He was trying not to lose his temper.

 

“Yeah?  What happened?  Why didn’t you come get me?”

 

“I was about to but the rain put it out.” Sabin admitted.

 

“It doesn’t count then.  Focus and get it done. I’m waiting.” Brofka folded his arms across his chest and stared.

 

Sabin pointed his palm again and began to focus his will.  Of course, this is when Brofka drove the short stick into Sabin’s side. Both men could hear the soft crack of a rib breaking.  Sabin nearly sank to one knee but barely stayed standing. The pain was intense, and for a moment all Sabin could see was stars.

 

“Focus!  In battle, you’d never get this moment to recover!  Light the fire!”

 

Sabin grunted and focused again on the wood. “Shut up, old man.”

 

“Light the fire!  Get your worthless peasant ass in gear!”

 

Sabin turned to face Brofka, his eyes ablaze in a vicious glare. “Shut up!” And with those words a jet of flame erupted from Sabin’s palm and lit the logs and the little lean to on fire.  The fire felt nice, as damp as Sabin was.  There was a long silence as Brofka stared at Sabin and Sabin glared at Brofka.

 

It was Brofka who broke the silence after several tense moments.  “It’s about time.” He picked up a bucket the rain had filled with water and used it to put out the fire. He took a deep breath. “So, do you understand?”

 

Sabin thought about that question. “I think I’m starting to… but I don’t think the lesson is ‘get pissed to cast spells’, right?”

 

“No, Boy.  The use of magic does not come from emotion. It comes from will and it comes from belief.  You can focus all day on those damned logs and it won’t mean a thing unless you believe you can create fire.  You have to believe that you can do it, picture it in your head.  If you hold that belief in front of you, nobody will be able to stop you. I’ll make sure that I train you to be better than I was, yeah?”

 

“Yes sir, I guess no gambling away my money then.” Sabin said with a smirk.

 

“You are an ass.” Brofka’s slight smile didn’t match his words.

 

“So… can I go inside now?”

 

“Sure.” He turned to lead the way inside. “By the way, Boy… good job.”

 

Sabin smiled and stepped into the dry interior of the little cottage.


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