Thursday, October 30, 2008

Neill Fights The Zombies


NEILL says:

This 2008 production follows the action-horror template familiar from films such as 28 Days Later, Dawn of the Dead and recent Will Smith turdfest I Am Legend, in that it follows the story of a world ravaged by a virus-based zombie apocalypse, and the efforts of one survivor (in this case 31-year old comics illustrator Neill Cameron) to survive. The story opens with our hero finding himself as the last man in a zombie-overrun New York, and having to fight his way home to his wife and child in East Oxford through endless hordes of the shambling undead.

Utterly derivative in conception, this dream relies upon and indulges in every zombie-movie cliche there is. The plot is largely abandoned for long stretches where Neill simply shoots at zombies and makes their heads explode, a spectacle that offers certain visceral thrills at first but begins to pall after the 1,000th repetition or so. Worse than this, however, are the frequent bizarre lapses in narrative logic. The protagonists tense struggle to survive is suddenly forgotten for an extended sequence where he boards a Concorde flight from New York to London and spends an interminable amount of time deciding what to have from an absurdly opulent onboard buffet. Later in the story events take on an even stranger turn when our hero apparently forgets the zombie threat altogether and spends an inexplicable amount of time running around a London Underground station searching for a place to urinate. And just when this quest is building to a climax, the story ends abruptly, with no sense of closure or completion to events whatsoever.

Sloppy, uninspired and shambolically executed. Still about 70 times better than I Am Legend, though.


Monday, October 27, 2008

The Avenger-Archers

(Soap opera storyline)


I woke up this morning thinking about the recent 'superheroes' storyline on popular Radio 4 agrarian-based soap opera The Archers, and thinking 'ooh, I must write a review about that'. I thought it might be of interest to some of our readership to hear about this unusual ongoing plotline, in which several popular Ambridge residents gained superpowers loosely analogous to those of Marvel Comics' premiere superteam The Avengers (David Archer was the thinly-veiled Captain America analogue, Emma Grundy Spider-Woman, and so on). In this everyday tale of superpowered village folk, they banded together to fight crime and global terrorism, with a particular focus on corrupt agribusiness and evil genetically modified crops. And of course, lots and lots of parish council meetings about it all.

And then I woke up a bit more, and thought "the Archers' recent 'superheroes' storyline? Have I gone fucking insane?"

Still, it really was a cracking dream.

(Points deducted for not actually existing.)

Sunday, October 26, 2008


(Social Networking Site)

JAMES says:

Facebook is very similar to Reality, the original social networking site. You end up friends with lots of people you don’t actually like, and seem to spend all your time dealing with them as opposed to those people you genuinely have affection for. Also, you only get out what you put in, yet if you’re anything like me you put in the absolutely bare minimum and then spend your time annoyed that everyone has more friends than you. Finally, like life it is fun to begin with but soon becomes a bit of a chore. And it’s ultimately pointless and a waste of time. Have I run this metaphor into the ground enough yet? It’s also full of trivia and boasting but empty of anything approaching significance. That ought to do it.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A Slight Return

Many years ago two naive and insightful young men started a website, with nothing more than a domain name, a pirated copy of Photoshop and a burning desire to categorise the relative merits of every single one of God's creations. Thus was born Unified Review Theory, and it succeeded beyond their wildest dreams.

Assuming their wildest dreams were that not even their wives would read it.

Which they weren't.

Eventually, however, these brave young arbiters of taste reached a stage in their career where they no longer had enough spare time at work to trawl the internet for pictures of Luke Cage, Power Man. Loathe to waste their own free time on the site, it eventually petered out in a whimper of mediocre guest reviewers and lazy one liners. And, for a while, silence.

Seasons past, mortgages were arranged and babies were born. But the reviewing urge, once awakened, is not so easy to put back in the box. With no legitimate outlet for these tendencies they found themselves furtively giving their co-workers marks out of 10, debating the finer points of each new wave of McDonalds limited edition burgers into the small hours and being overly critical of their own children's achievements. Eventually they could fight it no longer, they must resurrect URT.

So, prepare yourself to have your opinions belittled as Neill and James return in...

Unified Review Theory II: The Harrowing

Monday, October 20, 2008

The Thirteen Problems

by Agatha Christie
(Collection of Miss Marple Short Stories)

JAMES says:

“I have a problem for you to mull over” Colonel Twodimensional leant back in his armchair as the rest of the group of unlikely friends held their breath in anticipation. “Some guy disappeared and everyone thought it was some other guy that had killed him and stuff”

“Well, “ said the token female smugly, “I think it was actually that other guy’s friend”

“What about you Miss Marple?”

“Don’t ask her, she’s just a silly old woman”

Miss Marple’s cheeks turned pink. “I may be just be a silly woman but this very much reminds me of the time a very implausible thing happened to Mrs Green the Grocer’s Wife, that didn’t really make any sense when you think about it, and it was actually that midget that you mentioned briefly at the start who killed him and stuff”

“Well, actually I improbably ran into the midget a bit later and he told me that was exactly what happened. And then he died”
Repeat x13

I think you take my point.


Sunday, October 19, 2008

October 2005 - October 2008 (inclusive)

(Period of time)


Bit of a mixed bag, really.