June 26, 2016
You'd think Spielberg would know better. You'd think someone at Disney would have noticed.
There's a story about a Japanese company who wanted to compete in the broadband market against Road Runner, so they licensed Woody Woodpecker for their competing mascot, and their advertising slogan was going to be "Get Woody, the Internet Pecker". According to the story (almost certain apocryphal) one of their American employees had to explain to them the slang meaning of "woody" and "pecker".
So Disney is bringing out Spielberg's movie, "The BFG". And even I, about as un-hip a person as you'll find, had as a first thought, "Wow! How fast does it fire?"
Probably not fast at all since it stands for "Big Friendly Giant", not "Big Fucking Gun".
I watched the first three episodes of this series and decided it was idiocy and dropped it. What I read about it later did nothing to disabuse me of that impression. Zombie Apocalypse caused by mutant psychic gerbils? Please.
So the 12th and final episode just ran and I decided it wouldn't be fair to write a scathing review of the whole thing without watching it.
And you know what? It was stupid but it was fun. Maybe the biowarfare part of the story got explained earlier; in any case it didn't sink (heh) the final episode.
It took mammoth suspension of disbelief but a degree of Rule of Cool helped a lot. The main disbelief was that with all this firepower going on, apparently no one got injured let alone killed. (Given how many zombified crew there were on Musashi, it's hard to believe no one died there, but they kind of airbrushed all of that. We only saw them once, for about one second, during the boarding action.)
I'm still not sure I could manage to get through watching the whole series, because that would mean fully embracing the stupid, and there was a lot of stupid. Maybe I'll go back and read RandomC's episode reviews for them all.
But the last episode really was pretty awesome. I think I'll watch it again.
UPDATE: It wasn't as good the second time; too many "Wait a minute" moments. Sometimes a show improves on second watching (like the Girls und Panzer movie) but sometimes they get worse.
I want to know the back story about the zombie plague but I'm not sure I'm willing to invest several hours and a lot of brain cells I can't spare in order to find out.
Omo says "Bakuon!! is my top anime of the season."
Evirus says "Bakuon!! turned out to be the best show from Spring 2016"
Seems I'm not the only person who fell for this show.
June 24, 2016
Elizabeth II, God bless her, has been Queen of England (and Scotland and Canada and Australia and Wales and not the United States) my whole life. She just turned 90 and I know no one lives forever, though her line lives remarkably long. The Queen Mother lived to be 102.
Yesterday the voters of the UK decided there should continue to be a UK for Elizabeth to be Queen of. A superb decision, for a lot of reasons, and so in honor of this tremendous achievement today's search term is "Union Jack".
(Full size version) On June 23, 2016, Brits looked at the gold-plated chains offered them by the EU and by their own leaders, turned their backs, and marched away.more...
June 23, 2016
It's not my country and it really isn't my business, but I have to confess that I hope "leave" wins, mostly for shadenfreude.
But it won't make any difference. Even if "leave" gets a huge victory, this vote is non-binding. If the UK is to leave the EU, Parliament would have to pass a bill. And they won't.
There have been many elections in various parts of Europe about the EU over the last 25 years or so, and they have never made any difference. If the voters give the wrong answer, either the government ignores them or it schedules a new vote, to give the voters a chance to correct their error. It's a slow-motion non-violent political coup pitting Europe's snobs against their slobs. The snobs know the answers (or think they do) and they're not going to let the slobs stand in the way. And so it is, here.
Even if "leave" wins big, this Parliament won't even debate such a bill, let alone pass it. The snobs have already decided that European unity is too wonderful an idea to let a bunch of slobs stop it. The only political effect will be to strengthen the UKIP, and the only way Parliament will consider leaving the EU is if UKIP is in majority. Even in the best of scenarios it would take years to reach this point.
So from the American Schadenfreude point of view, the only amusing aspect of this if "leave" wins will be to watch Cameron explain why the vote didn't actually matter, and why he and his party are justified in ignoring it.
I'm watching the vote count on the BBC, and right now "leave" has a slight edge. But it's only about 1 million votes total so far and that's maybe 2% of the ultimate total. As the wise man once said, it ain't over until it's over. And apparently that won't be until late this evening my time (i.e. morning in the UK).
As you might imagine, over at Metafilter the consensus is that "stay" should win, so another source of schadefreude is reading all the moaning as "leave" continues to lead. And, of course, anyone who votes to "leave" is a drooling racist. It's obvious, isn't it?
UPDATE: At the Guardian, this interesting comment from Andrew Sparrow:
You can always tell who is losing on an election night - it's the side where they start blaming each other. Earlier, when it looked good for remain, we saw Vote Leave have a go at Nigel Farage.
But now the recriminations are breaking out on the remain side, where Labour is blaming the government.
UPDATE: About 2 million votes counted now, and "leave" has about a 150,000 vote lead. This could get interesting. But the fat lady isn't warming up yet.
UPDATE: Now "leave" has a 175K vote lead. This is getting more awesome by the minute.
UPDATE: Well, lots of votes from the London area came in, and now "remain" has a 115K lead. But the fat lady isn't warming up yet; this is still only about 10% of the vote counted. And London isn't representative of the whole country.
UPDATE: And now the "remain" lead is down to 32K. I gotta stop doing this.
UPDATE: And now "leave" is back up to an 18K lead. Yeah!
UPDATE: "Leave" is almost 300K ahead now and has been pulling away for the last hour.
This guy says "remain" has no chance of winning, as in zero. He's using some sort of predictive model.
UPDATE: "Leave" has a 420K vote lead now and more than half the votes have been counted. I think I heard the fat lady starting to warm up.
UPDATE: I've been sitting here all evening with a big grin on my face. Some of that comes from reading the Metafilter thread. Lots of moaning, groaning, and gnashing of teeth going on there.
"Leave" now has a 600K lead and it's hard to see how anything can put "stay" back into the lead.
UPDATE: AND the fat lady just started her solo. The BBC just called it for "leave" and so did CNN International. "leave" is more than 800K ahead with about three quarters of the votes counted.
Meanwhile, financial markets all over the world are going nuts. The Pound has dropped like a stone relative to other currencies. The Dow is reported to be down several hundred points.
I think most of that economic gyration is idiocy and it'll all damp out in a few business days, but in the mean time the headlines in the WSJ are going to be interesting.
I wonder if you can sell schadenfreude futures?
UPDATE: All the cars are off the track, and here's the final result:
Leave: 17,410,742 votes, 51.9%
Remain: 16,141,241 votes, 48.1%
Difference is 1,269,501.
June 22, 2016
Added 256 grabs from Bakuon!!
Total is now 7339.
Let's get something clear from the get-go: I don't think the mangaka is trying to hide a serious story here. It's an ecchi comedy and that isn't going to change. But I do think there's a lot of story background here he's only revealing slowly. It's the skeleton onto which he's hanging a lot of good jokes and it's going to stay that way.
Nonetheless, I think it's there. And in particular I think there's something pretty interesting about Lime sempai. She's always been strange and mysterious, and I don't think that's random or haphazard. The mangaka knows the truth about her, and all the things that happen relating to her are consistent and driven by his unrevealed back story about her.
This is a monstrous spoiler about the whole series so it all goes below the fold.more...
So 5 episodes done and 144 candidates so far. I've been noticing that a lot of scenes in this show, taken out of context, are extremely confusing. Like that one; if you have seen the show you'll know why a crane is lifting a Ducati with a side car.
Now that I understand what's going on with Lime,
UPDATE: And done! 259 candidates!
June 21, 2016
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