Best Brains

MST3K is going to only have thirteen episodes this season, inasmuch as Sci-Fi decided not to pick up the option for the remaining nine (making a complete season).

Here’s the good thing, however — There Will be a season ten, and Sci-Fi and Best Brains are getting along wonderfully (unlike how everything went with Comedy Central)… There’s no ratings problem, and the show isn’t disgruntling anyone at the station. Sci-Fi seems to be grateful to have some light-hearted original programming to flesh out the turgid bleakness of much of the material on the station.

Freezing

Can’t feel the keys to type — the power just came back on a half an hour ago — it’s been out for six days, now. Over half a million people (in other words, a full 50% of the state’s population) were knocked out by the storm. As it is now, only about a quarter of the state is still blacked-out, and it’ll take another week to fix it all completely, they say…

It’s been cold. In the teens. No heat. Power lines down all over the roads and yards. Nearly all the trees knocked down.

The Darkness Between the Pixels

I think what’s so attractive about old nes games is, it’s just popped out to me, how dark they all feel — just a little surreal and a little mysterious. Blaster Master and Simon’s Quest and Zelda and Metroid — there’s so much which can’t be seen — you don’t know what anything is, and have to fill it in for yourself. All of the creatures in Blaster Master are a flat gray. The colors in Zelda are completely two-dimentional blobs; it has indistinct sound effects and rocks which look like turtles. Metroid is all black and empty, as is Blaster Master — and, actually, lots of Zelda and Simon’s Quest, really. They feel. . .unexplored. There could be anything in any niche. It’s like a dream. . .

With today’s games, you see everything and you know where and what everything is. The jellyfish in Blaster Master Look like the Metroids. Goonies II — well, that’s a strange one. It sort of overproves the point.

Life Force and Gradius. . .

The games which were hardest to play, I think, were the darkest ones — Gradius and Metroid and Castlevania 1; all great, but all kind of depressing. The games of today are… Microsoft/Apple spawn. They don’t feel real because they’re made to feel too real. Old NES games are like a dark fantasy — they feel so unreal that the mind makes them more real and alive than anything today could strive to be. And they’re mostly smaller than this text. . .