Sunday, April 23, 2017

Iron FIst: "The Mistress Of All Agonies

That was better, although, once again, largely because it couldn't have been worse.

Iron Fist: "The Blessings Of Many Fractures"

Yeah, they wish many fractures had blessings, because that episode was fractured as fuck. It was jacked up. It was the single biggest dumpster fire of the show to date, which is saying something.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

NXT (4/19)

Ten! Ten! Ten losses, one win!
Good news, everyone! NXT has a new theme, and has gone from having the best theme (I know, low bar) of all the WWE shows to the worst. It's fucking awful. It's like Kid Rock's cousin fucked a Hot Topic dumpster.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

205 Live (4/18)

Best Thing on a Bad Episode
I know I've been bad, and blown off covering 205 Live and NXT for a couple of weeks, but the same four storylines have just been playing out. And since they all advanced or culminated this week, I can talk about all of them and it's like you didn't miss anything.

Brian Kendrick and Akira Tozawa have been the best thing on 205 Live for a while now, and one of the best things in all of WWE. Until two weeks ago, Kendrick had been teaching Tozawa a series of heel "lessons" that involved Tozawa getting fooled or beaten up.

So, three episodes ago, the tables turned, with Tozawa beating Kendrick by faking a knee injury, then tricking Kendrick into losing to Mustafa Ali by sneaking in and ringing the ring bell to make Kendrick drop his submission before Ali tapped. It's a great story, and that's why I'm giving this week's sub-par installment a pass, because Tozawa distracting Kendrick so Tony Nese could hit Kendrick from behind over Kendrick costing Nese the match with Tozawa is not the best or most logical way to play out the "have eyes in the back of your head" lesson.

In other news, I think, hope, pray that the Noam Dar / Rich Swann / Alicia Fox thing is over, as this week saw Fox dump Dar and Swann reveal that the whole thing was just revenge on Fox for dumping Cedric Alexander. Go, angle, and never darken my door again.

Drew Gulak continues his quest to stop dangerous high-flying on the dangerous high-flying show, and now he has a protest sign and a bullhorn because I guess CJ Parker hasn't needed them for a year and a half so let's try this again, folks!

Oh, almost forgot. TJ Perkins is evil now. He got Sithed by Neville a week or two ago. He's helping beat up Austin Aries before the rematch at Payback. If you're feeling neither positively nore negatively towards this news, that's appropriate.

Smackdown Live (4/18)

OK, I guess?
The highlight, and inexplicably not the main event, of this week's Smackdown was a six-pack challenge to determine the #1 contender to Randy Orton's WWE Championship, in another move that makes me wonder if the US Title and WWE Titles are swtiching places, with the WWE Title being the secondary belt.

We all know Randy Orton's going to retain, assuming the Payback match is even for the title anymore, which I guess it is but they never mention it. So none of the three faces in the match (Sami Zayn, Luke Harper, or Mojo Fucking Rawley) were going to win. That left Dolph Ziggler (nope), Jinder Mahal (what), and Erick Rowan as the heels. I figured it'd go to Rowan to follow on with the Wyatt Family thing, but no, thanks to the help of the maybe called up, maybe guest starring Bollywood Boyz, Jinder Mahal earned the right to lose to Orton at Backlash in May.

Now, I could get behind this. An Indian heel stable with Mahal at the helm? There are worse ideas. ANd WWE implemented two of them. First, by having Mahal call himself "THE MAHARAJA", because really, WWE? And second, having him be from a rich famil, a trope stolen from generations of Arab wrestlers, some of whom, as you'll see on 205, are apparently still using it. Ugh.

Charlotte, meanwhile, became the #1 contender by beating Naomi clean in a non-title match while the other heels in the SDWD executed Natalya's brilliant plan of staring at her backstage twice. Good plan, Natty, Carmella, and Tamina. That'll really teach her to come in and be better than you.

The Shining Stars are now "The Colons", so I assume when Primo and Epico wrestle in singles matches, they'll be "The Semicolons". ZINGO! Anyway, they beat American Alpha to make us try to forget tje ;ast twp uears pf timeshare-shilling jobbing and it's not really working yet.

Kevin Owens beat Local Talent in a US Title Open Challenge, and in the main event, AJ Styles beat Baron Corbin in a decent match over them being mad at each other from the AUS Title A#1 Contender's match last week. See what I mean about the WWE belt being the midcard belt? And that's it.  couple video packages for Nakamura and Dillinger and that somehow filled two hours of show. Not very interestingly.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Monday Night Raw (4/17)

Yeah, we were due.
It's kind of weird to have an entire episode of Raw be mediocre and boring so that the big thing at the end seems even more spectacular, but the thing at the end happens so deep in the overrun that my DVR couldn't get it and I had to watch it on the Internet instead.

Agents Of SHIELD: "No Regrets"

Patriotism ain't what it used to be. 
Spoilers after the break, because it can't really be avoided.

Iron Fist: "Falling Tree With Roots"

That was... sorta OK, I guess?

Fast RMX (Nintendo Switch)

I like racing games, but I haven't liked a racing game in a while.

That's because I like a style of racing game that hardly ever gets made anymore. Everything now is a large open world street racing game with some vague plot. And it's online. And there's no local splitscreen. And they want you to, you know, drive.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild

That shit's gonna break soon.
I should hate thig game soooooooo much.

Nintendo Switch

Ultimately, looked at as a whole, the WiiU wasn't really that successful as a gaming machine. I mean, it was successful in that I enjoyed quite a few games for it, but in terms of what it was trying to do for gaming, with its pad and motion controls, well, the thing was really not ready for primetime. The pad was clunky, the system was underpowered, and it was too beholden on its Wii past.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Agents of SHIELD: "Identity And Change" (4/11)

If there's a complaint to levy at Agents of SHIELD at this point, it's that it's so consistently competent, and the characters are so well established at this point, that actual surprises are kind of hard to come by.

Iron FIst: "Immortal Emerges From Cave"

Now, see, that's how you make a not particularly great, but at least watchable, episode of Iron Fist.

The Great WWE Superstar Shakeup of 2017

A bunch of people on one of the shows you're watching are on the other show you're watching, and vice versa. Did they make things better? Worse? Who knows.

Smackdown Live (4/11)

Sorry, dude.
As with Raw, we're going to deal with the non-shakeup portions of Smackdown Live.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Monday Night Raw (4/10)

OK, fine, I like Braun Strowman now.
I'm not going to talk about the Superstar Shakeup moves until Smackdown's over and all the moves are finalized, but some other stuff happened on Raw too

Iron Fist: "Under Leaf Pluck Lotus

In the fifth episode of Iron Fist, there's a scene, a moment in time, at encapsulates almost everything that's wrong with this show. Later, there's a kinda shitty fight that covers the rest.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Smackdown Live (4/4)

Remember how, in my Raw post, I mentioned how the post-Mania shows are good for debuting lesser superstars beloved by smart fans and letting the crowd reaction turn them into a big deal, like with Enzo and Cass a year ago? Well, hello, Tye Fucking Dillinger.

Agents of SHIELD: "What If..."

And why we turn their movie into a Netflix series.
So, you remember all those times when Barry Allen went to an alternative Earth or an alternative timeline and kept reacting like a complete moron even though he knew everything there was different and nobody there was who he thought they were?

Monday Night Raw (4/3)

Nope. Nobody likes you.
First things first. I know it's a tradition for the audiences after Mania to be a bunch of rowdy assholes trying to get themselves over and ignore the matches. And it's also the WWE's tradition to have the announcers present this as "none of this matters this is just fan passion". But we all know this is a mixed bag at best, really only useful for making debuting NXT people seem like huge stars as the smark crowd cheers for them. Last year we got Enzo and Cass, and this year, we got... The Revival.

Iron Fist: "Rolling Thunder Cannon Punch" / "Eight Diagram Dragon Palm"

Two more epiosdes of Iron Fist in, and I have good news, and I have bad news.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Wrestlemania 33

My favorite Wrestlemania moment.
Nobody needs to watch seven hours of pro wrestling. Ever. It's just not a thing that should happen. Six is pushing it as it is, but seven? I actually enjoyed a lot of Wrestlemania, but as with so many WWE shows over the last couple of years, what they think of as the "main events" are a bunch of bullshit I could barely stand to watch if I was fresh, and by hour five point five, I am not fresh.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

PREDICTIONS: Wrestlemania 33

The Ultimate... Something Or Other
Here we are again! Big show time! Six hours of wrestling and Pitbull performances!  As with Takeover, the predictions are divided into SHOULD and WILL, with what I want to happen and what I expect to happen.

PREDICTIONS: NXT Takeover Orlando

Probably the match of the night.
It's time for another NXT Takeover, also known the show that makes the real show look bad, and Orlando should be no exception, even with a main event that won't steal the show.

Friday, March 31, 2017

NXT (2/29)

Don't start being appealing now.
Unlike 205 Live, NXT has its own event this weekend, so a lot of people get to play. And so we get some final build for Takeover and a match that angers me for the wrong reasons.

Arrow: "Disbanded" (3/29)

This episode of Arrow featured a thing I would normally be mad about in a show like this, but the execution was so solid I'm gonna give it a pass.

205 Live (2/28)

So, say you're a weekly show in the WWE, with your own roster of a dozen plus wrestlers, and of those dozen plus wrestlers, two of them are performing on Wrestlemania, and those two are competing in the pre-show. How do you fill your last show before the big dance? With filler!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Iron Fist: "Shadow Hawk Takes Flight"

Better, I guess? But still not good.

Smackdown Live (3/28)

Much like Raw, Smackdown killed time before Wrestlemania by reminding you about everyone's feuds. They did manage a couple of interesting things, though.

The Flash: "Abra Kadabra"

She must be strong, she's wearing black pants.
By Flash standards, this wasn't an awful episode. More goofy dumb than stupid. Oh, sure, there was another Inexplicably Kept Secret, and the actor playing the villain seemed to be attempting to chew scenery and failing horribly, but hey, small victories.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Raw (3/27)

What's that slogan again?
This was a perfectly mediocre go-home episode of Raw before Mania. I mean, there were literally zero new developments. Just video packages, promos, and a handful of matches that allowed Sunday's participants to beat up on each other.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Lucy and Oliver

Lucyin the front, Ollie in the badk.
So, over the last six months, odds are good than any significant disruption in my various Internet writing was tied directly to the illness and loss of the two cats we had since 2001. We lost Willow in October, and Rory at the beginning of March.

Yesterday, we  adopted Lucy and Oliver lrom a local rescuer we found through Feline Rescue MN. Tyey just turned 11 months old, sister and brother, friendly, affectionate, and utterly ridiculous. I won't be clogging this place cat blogging, don't worry, but in the interest of a broader variet of topics, and also because of the hyper focus of the last... 19 hours, I figured I'd indulge.

NXT (3/22)

A cynic wouild say that Vince McMahon just discovered Suicide Girls.
THis was a pretty momentous NXT, especially by NXT standards, where not a lot happens most weeks.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

205 Live (3/21)

Credit where credit is do. 205 Live had five or six segments this week, depending on how you count, and all but one of them advanced stories. Many of those stories are dumb as fuck, but for 205 Live, this is still an improvement.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Arrow: "Kapiushon" (3/22)

Now that we know Promootheus is Adrian Chase, or that Adrian Chase is the fake identity of the guy Team Arrow thought he was all along, a point that was not made as clear as I'd like over the past week or two, it's time for that Arrow staple. The episode where we pretty much wrap up the flashback story in a way that super obviously and directly applies to the current situation.

Smackdown Live! (3/21)

OK, I guess.
The big problem with Smackdown right now is a disconnect between good wrestling and good stories. Heading into Mania, all their good stories are paird with shitty matches and vice versa.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

You May Notice A Change

If there's one thing I'm fond of, it's constantly changing my approach when I realize I'm not enjoying something. During my break, I learned how much the process of writing about this stuff and organizing that writing was detracting from my ability to enjoy it.

So I'm changing things up. A little. Probably not gonna cover @midnight anymore, because that was the one where things were the worst. But I am going to try to cover more of my pop culture life in a less structured way. Shorter, quicker posts. More a la minute, as it were. Also maybe going to go a little more personal. We'll see how that works out. You;ll wee why y next week, if things go as planned.

Iron Fist: "Snow Gives Way"

Danny Rand, Stalker Of Kun
Hoo boy, that's off to a rough start.

The Flash: "Duet"

Small victories.
For three weeks, Team Stupid Dumdums have been doing stupid dumdum shit around the whole Savitar thing, getting engaged, getting unengaged, fucking up, being annoying, and treating Jessie Quick so sexistly shitty that the fucked off to Earth 3 because Earth 3 needs a Flash and apparently Earth 2 doesn't still.

So this week's musical episode was a big ol' pile of gratuitous dumb, but at least it was a more typical, traditional kind of dumb. Thank fuck they only wrote almost intentionally ironic dumbfuck original song? The rest of it was gratuiitous cameos by any Arrowverse actor who can carry half a tune and NON STOP SHITTY ACCENTS. And if any character in DC history has suffered more from being turned into a blandly handsome CW Type than the Music Meister. But hey, at least I got to see a tiny bit of Bad Makeup Martian Manhunter. But I also had to see the horrible, horrible ending that can eat all the dicks in the multiverse.


Monday Night Raw (3/21)

Somewhat surprisingly, I actually enjoyed a lot of this Monday Night RAW. Especially the Mick Foley Gets Fired stuff, and the way they wove it throughout the entire roster.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Biweekly Wrasslin' Wroundup (Catchup Edition)

OK, I've got two weeks of wrestling, including a Raw Brand PPV, living in the hole of the break I took just enjoying some things instead of analyzing them. So let's just look at each of the four brands and see where we stand, shall we?

Friday, March 10, 2017

Monthly Free Games (March 2017)

This is my isometric exercise.
Back to posting after a break with a bunch of free games, many of which I've already bought and enjoyed, and many of which are kind of shitty. But there's Lumo, so the month's not a total loss.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Oh, The Metahumanity! Feb 20-23)

Arrow improves, because how could it not? Flash goes ape. Powerless slips a bit from last week's high, and Agents of SHIELD knocks it out of the park, asks us to hold its beer, and vanishes until April.

The Flash: "Attack On Gorilla City" (15% Stupid)

OK. I'm not gonna ding Flash for another one of those Flash episodes where the budget and the effects crew really isn't up to the task. It's an ambitious episode, and yeah, you can see every single corner they cut, but they get a pass from me on that.

I have one small problem, and one large problem with this episode. The small problem involves Jessie Quick. Not only was leaving her behind a dumb contrivance to further her Wally story (really, you don't want to bring a person with superpowers and familiarity with Earth 2 on your rescue mission to Earth 2?), but neither her wrestling with her decision to stay, nor her decision, ever referenced the fact that the only reason she went to Earth 2 in the first place is that "Earth 2 needs a Flash". Guess it doesn't anymore even though it's full of monkey armies?

The larger problem may or may not be ameliorated next week, but the show needs to explain why, if Grodd had Gypsy in his back pocket the entire time, any of the events in this week's episode needed to happen at all. I mean, yeah, technically he needed someone to defeat Solivar so he could take over Gorilla City, but you'd think a dimension-hopping trained assassin would be able to manage that without any of the moral qualms that got in Barry's way.

Agents Of SHIELD: "Self Control" (0.0000000001% Stupid)

This was fucking fantastic, start to finish. Tense, dramatic, action-packed, emotional, EVERYONE'S A ROBOT, tables got turned over, the status quo of the show shifted, and they left us with a fucking cliffhanger for a six week break until the show returns in April. APRIL! I wonder if they're getting out of the way of Iron Fist?

The tiny fraction of stupid is due to the fact that I can't quite jibe the events of this episode with the cliffhanger revelation from last episode that detected four robots when four people entered the base.

Arrow: "The Sin-Eater" (15% Stupi)

Much better than last week. The biggest problem here is that the show has had like five seasons to establish various moral centers. And I think it was maybe three episodes ago where Diggle got a stern talking to about torture and Felicity got a stern talking to about blackmail.

What Thea did in this episode is roughly on par with that, and it's a sign of SOMETHING DARKER. And to accomplish this, the show has to paint Susan Williams in a WAY more sympathetic light than the season has shone on her to date. As far as this season's been concerned, she's been manipulating Oliver and dating/fucking him while compiling a dossier on and investigating him.

So when she gets mad at Ollie for lying, using a line I'm pretty sure has been in this show before, it's hard to amass sympathy, even given the morally questionable means by which she was neutralized. I can go along with it, but I'm not fully invested because it's not fully consistent.

Powerless: "Emily Dates A Henchman" (60% There)

I freely admit I was biased towards this episode because I saw the title ahead of time and love it. The actual plot referenced in the title is, really, the B plot of the episode, and it plays out OK. The dynamic between Emily and Jackie is rife for comedy, and this ep takes a noble swing at it and only whiffs a little.

I still don't know why Dnany Pudi is here. I like him. I like his character. But he's spent the entire season being the third whieel in other people's plots. What does Teddy bring to the ensemble? No idea. Everyone else's contribution is clear four episodes in, so it's definitely time to answer the question for Teddy.

Also, Van Wayne has a rubbersmith.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Weekly Wrasslin' Wrouindup (Feb 20-22)

And THAT's why he's the champ. For at least another 10 days.
Don't know if it's something in the air, or what, but a LOT of what WWE did this week worked for me. Most of Raw, some of Smackdown, a lot of NXT. In a pretty shocking twist, 205 Live was the letdown, with one and a half decent matches and a lot of tedious BS.

Monday, February 20, 2017

@midnight LIVE Power Rankings (Feb 13-16)

Yep! That happened.
A week of all-live @midnights tells us two things. One, the show can totally be done live and be entertaining and insane. And two, they shouldn't do it more than once a year. Because the live shows really take the focus off the guest comedians and their jokes. The rankings, as a result, are even more arbitrary than usual.

Oh, The Metahumanity! (Feb 13-16)

Problem solved. NEXT!
Arrow takes an epic misstep in the midst of a pretty good season, while Powerless starts to learn how to use its powers for good.

Weekly Wrasslin' Wroundup (Feb 13-16)


Monday, February 13, 2017

Elimination Chamber 2017

The, um, highlight? I think?
The Elimination Chamber was a masterpiece of mediocrity. No matches from the announced card were on the kickoff show, just Mojo Rawley vs. Curt Hawkins, which I didn't watch, because come the fuck on. With one exception, nothing was awful, but none of it was great. Even two new champions didn't liven things up, and my predictions were WAY THE FUCK OFF.

@midnight Power Rankings (Feb 6-9)

Honestly, this episode was a bit of a wash.

The @midnight crew probably spent a lot of last week fretting about this week's live episodes, which explains a fairly lackluster week with a lot of weak performances. Also, they booked Nick Swardson, who dropped a "suck my own dick" callback so obvious I spent an entire commercial break knowing it was coming. Special props to first-timer Alan Tudyk, who came out strong, and Josh Johnson, who made Thursday's show watchable thanks to about three killer jokes.

The LEGO Batman Movie

LEGO Batman Movie isn't as good as The LEGO Movie, but let's face it, what is?

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Monthly Free Games (Feb 2017)

Best of the month BY FAR.
Sony's policy of "Firstish Tuesday Of The Month" is the main reason for the MFG list to be out on the 11th this month, although hilariously enough, just like last month, I have the same fucking cold that's been going around. Anyway, get Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime and poke at the rest.

Oh, The Metahumanity! (Feb 6-9)

The Internet needs to up its Agents of SHIELD screencap game.
No big swings on any of the shows this week. SHIELD is competent with some iffy stuff, Flash is flailing around and not settling in to any kind of groove, Arrow is trying to go somewhere but stumbling a bit along the way,

Elimination Chamber PREDICTIONS

So ridiculous.
It's a quantity over quality card for Elimination Chamber. Two of these have got to go on the pre-show, that's the only way it'll work. I'm betting Ziggler's match and Nikki-Natalya. I'm also predicting I won't enjoy this much.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Weekly Wrasslin' Wroundup (Feb 6-9)

Elimination Chamber is days away, but it was 205 Live that stole the show this week, in the best show they've put on ever, and the best match the Cruiserweights have had since the Classic.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

@midnight Power Rankings (Jan 30 - Feb 2)

Go ahead and celebrate. You earned it.
Yeah, I skipped a week because I actually couldn't watch all four of, um, two weeks ago's episodes that week or most of last week. I'm caught up now, though, and it's a good week to get caught up on, with some standout performances, especially Whitney Cummings and Will Sasso on Thursday's show, which was loose and filthy. Also, Ashling Bea is fucking hilarious every single time she's on.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Oh, The Metahumanity! (Jan 30-Feb 2)

Perhaps soon it will live up to its awesome credits.
New show! Lots of promising ingredients in Powerless, but the big surprise this week was a perfectly enjoyable episode of The Flash. I know, right?

Weekly Wrasslin' Wroundup (Jan 30 - Feb 2)

We're on the road to Wrestlemania, but in two weeks, we have to stop off at the
Finally found a pic of my fave Rumble moment so I'm using it.
Elimination Chamber because we can't make it all the way to Orlando without eliminating. I actually love the Elimination Chamber because it's the most elaborate gimmick WWE has, and ridiculously elaborate gimmicks are the best part of wrestling. Anyway, OK week, brought down some by the usual post-Takeover NXT.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Royal Rumble 2016

Goddammit, WWE. It was going really well. Lots of solid matches, lots of good stories, fun spots in the Rumble match, and then IT happened. Well, let's run down the entire six hour extravaganza, because there's only two weeks until Elimination Chamber.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

NXT Takeover: San Antonio

Shows what I know.
As expected, Takeover SA was a pretty decent show. Not a great show. Slightly better than on paper, though, and the main event really exceeded my expectations.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Oh, The Metahumanity! (Jan 23-25)

This week, on a special episode of Bad Idea Theater...
The WB is off to a rocky start as it heads into the back half of its seasons. Luckily, Agents of SHIELD is there to pick up the slack.

PREDICTIONISH: Royal Rumble Match 2017

By importance, or age?
WWE is coming off two horrible Rumble matches and a mediocre one. 2014 saw the crowd turn on the match when Daniel Bryan wasn't even included, and 2015 was the infamous collective decision to officially fucking hate Roman Fucking Reigns. Last year's match had Reigns as Poochie, missing for most of the match so that everyone could enjoy it, but with the announcers constantly wondering where he was and what he was doing until he came back. And then heel HHH got a huge face pop for eliminating Reigns and winning the match AND the title in an event so insignificant I'd forgotten he won it until I rewatched.

This year we're poised for a hot Rumble match, though. Reigns isn't in it. Cena isn't in it. 22 wrestlers have announced, and while Old Hosses (Goldberg, Lesnar, Big Show, Undertaker) and a new hoss (Strowman) are a huge part of the story, after rewatching every Royal Rumble match in order, I don't think it's in the cards for most of them. I can't really predict it, espeially with 8 surprise entrants, but I can groiup things. I'm good at grouping things.

PREDICTIONS: Royal Rumble 2017

Mind meld with the Rumble. Take in the Rumble's katra.
Because it doesn't really lend itself to pure prediction, I'm going to discuss the Rumble match in a separate post. But the WWE has six fucking hours to fill, and only one-plus of those will be the Rumble match, so let's look at the rest of the card.

PREDICTIONS: NXT Takeover San Antonio

With a few hours to spare, my NXT Takeover: San Antonio predictions. I'm not expecting this to be one of the all time great Takeovers, but it should be a solid couple hours of wrestling.

Weekly Wrasslin' Wroundup (Pre-Rumble Edition)

Thanks for coming up with a good excuse for this match!
We head into the Royal Rumble with a moderately strong week, with good bits scattered across all four shows, but also mediocre and stupid shit across the board, too.