Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The Geek Manifesto

Mr. Bennion has a nifty manifesto, "What a Geek Believes", that he knicked from here. I'll reproduce it below, with the things I believe allowed to stand but with the things I do not believe struck out.

(The original is in one long paragraph, but I'm going to break it out into a list format for my purposes here.)

I believe that Han shot first. (OK, I'd prefer it if Han shot first, but I've never been able to get really worked up about this.)

I believe that Ally Sheedy was hotter before Molly Ringwald cleaned her up. (No, I liked her better after. But I always thought she should have ended up with Brian, not "Sport-o".)

I believe in miniatures, models, claymation, and not revealing the shark until you absolutely have to. (Well, yeah, but I've never felt the antipathy toward CGI that many geeks do.)

I believe that George Lucas, for better or for worse, change[d] the way we see the world, each other, and ourselves.

And I believe that we will someday reach those stars that he himself made visible.

I believe that George Lucas is also a narrow-minded, money-grubbing, pig-headed slave to the now, who ought to be locked away from his own creations, lest he do them further harm. ("Money-grubbing"? Why does Lucas always get singled out for doing things that everybody else in the business does? And I have no problem with what he's done lately, as I've demonstrated repeatedly.)

I believe that Jean-Luc Picard is the better Starship Captain, but I also believe that James Tiberius Kirk is infinitely cooler. (Kirk's my favorite Captain. But I love Picard, too -- different kinds of guys.)

I believe that a child standing in line to buy a book at midnight is fantastic; I believe that reading makes you smart — it’s schools that make you dumb. (Reading what? What is it about "schools" that make you dumb? This is too generic a statement.)

I believe that any episode of Futurama is better than any program featuring a precocious teenager who’s wise beyond their years. (I'm having trouble thinking up a counterexample, but there's always a counterexample.)

I also believe Buffy the Vampire Slayer to be the sole exception that proves this rule. (I never got into Buffy, but I liked it just fine when I watched a stray episode or two. I just never wanted to invest myself in getting into it; besides, I recall something else being on in the same timeslot.)

I believe that comic books are an art form, and will someday be recognized as such.

I believe that good shows die too young; and crap shows last too long. (Well, I'm not sure. What I really wish is that American teevee would go the anime route, and put together shows that tell a single story and then go away. The open-ended thing gets problematic, as good hit shows go on past the time when they really should go away (X-Files, ER). Sure, Firefly and Once and Again and My So-Called Life ended too soon, but I'd rather have what we do of those shows than have them spread out over three or four brilliant seasons and then three or four more less-brilliant ones.)

I believe that Eddie Izzard is the funniest man alive, and I don’t care whether you’ve ever heard of him or not — it’s still true. (I am totally unfamiliar with Eddie Izzard, so I'm agnostic on this point.)

I believe that a girl who likes movies about zombies is hotter than whoever is on the cover of Maxim this month.

I believe that Belloch ate that fly. (I'd agree, except that it's "Belloq", not "Belloch".)

I swear to God that I heard Luke call Leia "Carrie." (To my dying day I will not hear this as "Carrie!". It always sounds in my ears like something along this lines of "Heyeah!")

I believe that Samwise Gamgee never quite got the credit he really deserved. (In what way? I don't think that Samwise Gamgee ever wanted credit. He didn't want to be a Ringbearer, and he didn't want to go to Mordor. What he wanted was to see the Elves, and then go home and marry the girl with ribbons in her hair, which he did. The only credit he ever seems to want is for his name to be mentioned in the tales of his age, which it certainly is.)

I believe in magic, I believe in dreams, I believe in the power of music, movies, and the untold worlds inside an everyday library card. And I do not believe that geeks will inherit the earth; I believe that we already have. (Well, that should be on my tombstone.)

And there you are.


Anonymous said...

Doh! I can't believe I missed the spelling on "Belloq"!

Ah well, blame it on the work-related stress...

Tosy And Cosh said...

Veronica Mars proves the exception as well.

Anonymous said...

"Why does Lucas always get singled out for doing things that everybody else in the business does?"

The sole reason he lost what respect I had for him* was he changed the original trilogy - I can't think of another example from the "business" of that particular atrocity. Even Kubrick never did it.

*Which wasn't much. I was 13 when Star Wars (a/k/a A New Hope) came out, and I was blown away like every other 13 year old at the time, but it wasn't a life changing event. The only reason I don't want him totally erased from history for ruining the last great period of Hollywood movies is because Trek as we know it wouldn't exist without him, and that little fact is gonna be like sand in my thong for the rest of my life.

Kelly Sedinger said...

The sole reason he lost what respect I had for him* was he changed the original trilogy - I can't think of another example from the "business" of that particular atrocity.

Spielberg did it with Close Encounters, sixteen years before the Star Wars special editions came out, and then did it again, afterwards, with both CE3K and ET. Ridley Scott revisited Bladerunner as well, making substantial changes from that film's theatrical release before Lucas touched the original trilogy, and then he did it again, and now this Christmas he's got yet another "definitive cut" coming out.

Lucas may have taken the idea of a "Director's Cut" farther than most were comfortable at the time, but it was not without precedent and certainly not without followers.

Belladonna said...

I liked this post. BTW, Picard is SO much better as captain, in my book. But to each their own.

Anonymous said...

You forgot Coppola and Apocolypse Now. But are these examples really the equivalent of what Lucas did? I don't know about Bladerunner (I only saw the original) or ET (which I've never seen at all), but the rest involved merely adding in scenes that had previously been cut, not altering scenes that had been originally included. And the original versions remained readily available (to the best of my knowledge and belief, anyway - I saw a version of Apoc. Now at Circuit City recently that had both cuts of the movie).

I don't even have a problem with him grafting in a new CGI Jabba so much as I do with the whole Han shooting first thing, removing even the tiny bit of character complexity the movie had.

And here I am arguing like a fanboy over a movie I'm NOT EVEN A FAN OF! Lord, what the webs has done to us!