Sorry Marvel, but we’re gonna roll our eyes at that by Thor 4: The Loki Sky-splosion.
#4. Stop Giving Us the Same Ending
So, Guardians of the Galaxy kicked ass. I think the first two-thirds of it is one of the best movies I’ve seen this year, though that’s not really much of a compliment, because Transformers 4 is dragging the average down significantly. Buuuuut then we get to the end, and we basically see, as we pointed out last week, the exact same ending we got in The Avengers. OK, it wasn’t the exact same: The Avengers was about a sky-battle between a rag-tag group of heroes fighting off inter-dimensional aliens who wanted to commit genocide on an entire species with an infinity-stone MacGuffin, and also there was a helicarrier, because helicarriers are rad. Guardians only had the rag-tag group, the sky-battle, and an infinity-stone MacGuffin. If you want helicarriers and genocide in your climax, you’re going to have to watch Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
“The only good thing about the lack of female leads in superhero movies is that I get one no-brainer entry in every list-based article I write about superhero movies. It is absolutely absurd that we haven’t gotten this yet, guys.”
Cracked, killing it as usual.
Prep your Bond themes playlist in advance.
Chuck Norris is a real-life, non-superpowered badass … which makes the ad he did for the Czech Republic branch of T-Mobile all the more puzzling.
#4. T-Mobile Czech: Chuck Norris Faints
[In the ad Norris is] about to learn how to cook a fish old country-style. Step 1: Instead of waiting for Big Mouth Billy to gasp his final gasp, or simply beheading, scaling, and gutting the slimy little guy until chewable, this gal chooses to bonk it over the head with a giant mallet. Surprisingly, Ultimate Alpha Male Norris objects to bashing the poor fishie’s barely existent brains in, and yet his cruel mother/co-star/captor insists on carrying out the bludgeoning. So Chuck does what comes naturally: He faints. No joke here — his eyes roll to the back of his head like he’s a sarcastic teenager and he collapses in a heap, no more an ass-kicker than a swooning fairy tale princess encountering a giant fire-breathing serpent.
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If it’s not a heart-pounding rush of Red Bull to the brain, Michael Swaim’s not watching it.
An issue of Action Comics #1, which introduced Superman in 1938, was sold for $3,207,852.00. Comic book ‘em, Dan-o.
Meanwhile you can get Reaction Comics for twenty-five bucks.
Reeeeead a lot. I may have mentioned this before, but I was lucky because, in high school, our theater department had a really robust library of plays. Starting sometime in my Junior year I committed myself to reading a new one every single week for no reason other than I liked reading plays more than paying attention in certain classes. Plays are a great writer’s resource, especially if you’re struggling with dialogue.
I would also suggest trying some exercises where you write with a particular person in mind. If you’re writing a scene between two buddy cop characters, Jim and Megatron, for example and you can’t seem to wrap your head around making them sound real or fleshed out, just cast them (when I was writing Dan in Agents of Cracked, I was alternately writing for Jason Bateman or Tobias Funke).
Pretend Jim is going to be played by Michael Cera (who I’ve chosen because he’s got such a specific way of speaking). When Megatron asks Jim if he likes to party, nonexistent Jim might say “Sure” or “I like to party,” but Jim-as-Michael-Cera would say “Party? Oh, I mean, yeah, if you- I’m not exactly, I wouldn’t call myself a party…partysaurous, but, yeah, no yes. Yes. I’m party. I have partied. Yes.” It doesn’t matter that you probably won’t get Michael Cera to play this part (and it doesn’t matter if you’re writing a book where the “parts” aren’t played by ANYONE); what matters is now you have a character with a distinct voice.
Then just pick someone else for your voice inspiration for Megatron (could be a famous person or someone in your life whose cadence and mannerisms you know really well), and see what organically happens when two people with established voices do when stuck together in a specific situation. Michael Cera and Omar from The Wire are in a police car together, on a stakeout. What would they say to each other?
That guy’s considered such an expert on undercover journalism that he wrote a book about it that almost instantaneously became a New York Times best-seller.
#4. James O’Keefe
James O’Keefe has been called a right-wing Michael Moore, which means he is a documentarian who carefully edits his footage to make his subjects look like total dickheads to serve his own political agenda. … As we’ve previously discussed, O’Keefe’s most famous antic — the one that allegedly discovered evidence of ACORN employees advising people how to disguise the source of any illegal income — was proved to be categorically false, and he was forced to pay out $100,000 for slander (ACORN still got shut down, though). His other famous expose, in which he revealed how the head of fundraising for NPR was in favor of pushing an agenda of worldwide sharia law so long as it resulted in donation dollars, also turned out to be a steaming butt biscuit (O’Keefe had edited NPR’s Ron Schiller quoting various politicians in such a way as to make it seem like Schiller was reciting his own personal views — imagine someone deleting the phrase “According to Adolf Hitler” from the beginning of a sentence and you get the idea).
We talked to a former high-ranking member of a South Philadelphia skinhead gang, who said things look a little different from the inside. And the scariest part is how easy it is to get sucked in.
#5. We All Start Out as Scared Kids
The first thing to understand is that it’s not about racism. Yes, hatred of other races is what binds a skinhead gang together, but it could just as easily be something else as long as it binds us. If the skinheads hadn’t found me, some other gang would have, and I’d have gone along with whatever they were into. It could have been that gang of mimes from The Warriors.
Everybody forgets Pulp Fiction was Pre Netflix.