The following is my opinions about various topics about films and television series.
When buying a movie, please make sure you read the package carefully and only buy the movie in its original aspect ratio. Do not under any circumstances buy a film produced after 1953 in full screen. The full screen presentation usually leaves you with about half a film. Also, where ever movies are sold and the widescreen presentations are eschewed by the retailer, such as Walmart, start filling up their suggestion boxes with demands for more widescreen movies on the shelves. If a film was originally released in 2.39:1, the full screen version will only have half of the image you originally saw on the screen in the theater. I am not one to buy only half a film, but one person alone can not budge large retailers. So, please boycott any Blue Ray, DVD, digital download, or even the now almost extinct VHS that is not in the original aspect ratio. Spread this to your family and friends. If the full screen versions quit selling, they might finally quit making them.
The full screen aspect ratio is also becoming a misnomer. With televisions being produced in 16:9, the full screen presentation of a movie will have black bars to the left and right of the picture on the screen. If it is full screen on such a television, the picture is almost certainly stretched.
You can read about aspect ratios on Wikipedia or The Letterbox and Widescreen Advocacy Page. Don't settle for anything other than the original aspect ratios!
With me not liking the current direction of Doctor Who, I have missed a lot of side information such as the death of lovely Elizabeth Sladen. I am not too pleased the the shenanigans over the regeneration count; I am not happy with the new look of the TARDIS; and I am not liking the River Song story line since her introduction.
I believe that David Tennant played two regenerations of the Doctor. He was the 10th and 11th. Just because the Doctor did not change appearance does not mean that the energy needed for a full regeneration was not used. So, David Tennant played the 10th until the regeneration in "Journey's End". At that point he became the 11th and the clone with Donna being the Doctor too! David Tennant as the 11th regenerated into the 12th played by Matt Smith. The Doctor has one regeneration left, not two. Alas, they will cheat and find a way to bend the rules to give the Doctor as many regenerations as the BBC will pay for. After the next Doctor, they could bring back Georgia Moffett as the Doctor's daughter to take over the mantel of the Doctor, but they won't. They are already cheating by calling Matt Smith's Doctor the 11th instead of the real regeneration count of 12. The regeneration numeration shenanigans that Doctor Who is playing is one reason that I became disgusted with the series.
My first Doctor is the eighth Doctor.
The compartmentalization of the series Doctor Who and Torchwood irks me a little. I can understand that they want to keep the series as separate as possible, but there is just so much that is being completely ignored. Mickey Smith and Martha Smith-Jones would not sit idle as either the 456 or the Miracle is happening, yet not so much as a mention of the part they played during those incidents. Donna Noble has the memories of the Doctor locked away in her mind so they will not kill her. The last I saw, she goes into something akin to a coma to protect herself when events happen that could trigger a break in that block. How is her family coping with trying to keep Donna from being listed as a Category 1? Torchwood's newest associates, Lois Habiba or agent Johnson, from the 456 incident were not in evidence. With Jane Espenson coming from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I am very surprised that she did not write in something for John Hart. I really wanted to see a three way crossover event where everyone was in the same room where the groups were being mixed up between Doctor Who, Torchwood, and The Sarah Jane Adventures; however that is sadly impossible.
Han shot first!
Yes, he shot first George! Why did you meddle with it after the fact?
I can not watch Terra Nova.
First and foremost, I believe that before we humans go to another planet or even the Moon, we have to clean this one up first. We shouldn't take our physical and social diseases anywhere. We need to make sure that our planet here is clean of anything that would make us unworthy to step out into the stars. Right now, we are not worthy of leaving our home planet. We still have poverty, famine, pollution, and war; which means those who are left behind will suffer even more. Let us not pollute the rest of the solar system, Milky Way galaxy, or the universe with our problems.
Now onto Terra Nova, and why I can not watch that series. From the first commercial, I get the idea that the world is so polluted that humanity needs a new place where they can survive. Somehow they find a way to travel back in time to another reality. Now, let us look at all other science fiction when it comes to time travel. Most of the fiction out there tells us that time travel takes a great deal of power. That power has to come from somewhere. Sometime in the current world past of Terra Nova, there were scientists who were using a lot of power to generate whatever fields were necessary to travel through time. Those experiments probably went on for decades. That much power would produce a lot of pollution. Now to travel to an alternate reality in most other science fiction, it takes something akin to the power of a black hole or supernova to even break the barrier. Those experiments to break the barrier between realities more than likely are what led their poor world into being unlivable. To generate that much power here on Earth, I do not even want to think how much pollution was created.
So, we have a series about people who are going to a clean world to just pollute it with their dirty world mentalities, and they got there by making their world unlivable in the first place. Sorry, but that is not the type of series I want to watch where I sit there and feel sad for the ones who are left behind to clean up the mess which was created by those who left them behind.
Nudity and sex in film and on television
I find it peculiar male mammaries can receive a G rating, while female mammaries are consistently rated R. Does the Motion Picture Association of America know all nipples and the surrounding area of the body are erogenous zones no matter the person's gender? Also, why is the act of human life creation given an X rating, yet the act of human life destruction can be as low as a PG rating. Full frontal nudity of an aroused woman could get an R rating, yet the full frontal nudity of an aroused man will get an X rating. As far as I know, defibrillation is administered on bare skin. If a television series is not brave enough to bare female breasts to the camera, then they should stop having female heart attack patients. The United States of America one of the most prudish countries in the world when it comes to sex; yet not to blood, guts, and gore.
If the United States of America were a free country, we could have erect penises and complete sex scenes on network and commercial TV at 10 a.m. on a Sunday just like we can see war and mutilation. When will we come out of the sexual dark ages?
Give Chuck a break please?
I have been a fan of Chuck starring Zachary Levi, Yvonne Strahovski, and Adam Baldwin since the pilot aired in 2007. After each season I would scan the internet to see if the show would return the following year, hoping for renewal yet fearing cancellation. Chuck had some really bad luck in it's very first season with the writer's strike. It took a fan getting everyone who loved Chuck to buy Subway sandwiches to get us a second season. The third season started with only a thirteen episode order and was written with that in mind. Suddenly they get six additional episodes, so they valiantly try to top the first thirteen. The fourth season was similar to the third in that it was at first given thirteen then expanded.
Chuck versus the Other Guy and
Chuck versus the Push Mix were both to be season finales. The last six episodes of season three and the last eleven episodes of season four are great bonuses for the fans. Those two seasons seem rushed because cancellation was looming on the horizon, and now it has really happened with season five being the last. I feel sorry for the writers of Chuck for having to work under very uncertain conditions. Our favorite not-so-normal-guy spy is leaving our televisions after this short fifth season.
One wish the science fiction geek in me wants but can not be fulfilled is for a scene between Bruce Boxleitner [President of the Interstellar Alliance (Babylon 5 universe)] shaking hands and talking to Scott Bakula [the President of the United Federation of Planets (Star Trek universe)].
I could nitpick the series, but I will wait until the series is finished to see if any of the inconsistencies are cleared up in the last thirteen episodes.
Science fiction series comparison
Over the years people have compared some science fiction series to each other. Here is what I have heard.
|Star Trek||Stargate||Babylon 5|
|Star Trek||Stargate SG-1|
|Star Trek: The Next Generation|
|Star Trek: Deep Space Nine||Stargate: Atlantis||Babylon 5|
|Star Trek: Voyager||Stargate Universe||Crusade|
The horror genre and me
If you were to look at the list of people I am following and who is following me on Twitter, you might get the impression I like the horror genre. You would only be partially correct. Normally I have enough anxiety in my life, so I do not need a horror film to make me even more anxious. I also have enough fears of my own so I do not need someone else to make me even more afraid and add more fears to my already vast collection.
My main interest in horror is it is under the big speculative fiction umbrella. Speculative fiction includes science fiction, fantasy, disaster, alternate history, punk, weird west, and superhero fiction as well. When horror intersects with one of those, I become interested in it. When horror mixes with fantasy, we get dark fantasy and supernatural fiction. When horror mixes with disaster, we could get eco-horror. Splatterpunk is when horror and punk get together. There is also splatstick when horror and comedy meet. Let us not forget the romantic side of horror in Gothic fiction. Horror has a few sub-genres alone: personality horror, psychological horror, body horror, and, in film, slasher.
Most monsters in the horror genre have a cross over with another genre, some branch out into several.
Some of the most loved monsters in horror are zombies. Depending on how the zombies were created, they could either be fantasy, science fiction, or disaster. The fantasy zombies are the ones who are created by mystical means which means magic or divine intervention reanimates dead bodies. The science fiction zombies are the ones created when science goes wrong. They are the ones created by either biological or technological means from a bioweapon going wrong to nanotech in their brains. Disaster zombies are similar to the science fiction zombies. There could be other forms such as zombies who are created by torture. The main difference between fantasy zombies and science fiction zombies is the fantasy zombies have been dead for a while, the science fiction zombie is a person who is still alive but has the biology of a dead person. In both cases they do not represent a great threat if handled intelligently. Most zombie films have the survivors acting like morons. Another thing is zombies can not run. With no mind to control the body, I am surprised they have any locomotion at all.
The best undead creature is one we haven't seen yet. Zombies, vampires, and ghosts are old; we need a new type of more modern undead.
Also, why hasn't the military captured Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, and the like and done experiments on them to find out how they are still alive after all the punishment they have taken?
What science fiction fans owe Jules Verne and H.G. Wells
After watching Prophets of Science Fiction on the Science channel about Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, I've concluded Jules Verne is the father of science fiction with H.G. Wells being the godfather of science fiction. Jules Verne gave us spectacular machines and devices. H.G. Wells gave us concepts that endure to this day. We science fiction fans owe Jules Verne for showing us the technology we can dream can become reality if we study hard enough. H.G. Wells showed us we need to be careful stewards of that technology.
Aren't all alien invasions remakes of War of the Worlds, and all time travellers remakes of The Time Machine? How much do science fiction fans owe H.G. Wells?
Women in movies
Just once I would like to see the effects of PMS for poor some female character on TV and maybe a little leg hair when she did not feel like shaving. Also, I would like to know where women in a historical or a post-apocalyptic scenario get razors to shave their legs and underarms.