Topic: Personal Status Updates!

A place to post random thoughts or comments about our lives.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Okay, so I've kinda lost track of where we are with the Sliders rewatch. If someone knows which episodes we're supposed to have watched, feel free to post those updates.

The past few weeks have been hellish for me. My 14 year old dog was sick. He was put to sleep earlier today, so I'm a bit of a mess right now.

On top of that, I have the writing stress. I sent a novel out to a few beta readers and I'm waiting to see what they think of it. There are six books in this series and they all need to be prepped. I might be in over my head, but I guess it's better than not being able to write anything.

I do have some thoughts on season finales that I never got a chance to post. I think I have something written up for Arrow. If I can find that, I'll post it. If not, I will get back to it as soon as I can pull some thoughts together.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

So, SLIDERS REBORN, my insane 20th anniversary special, features a new character. A twisted 15-year-old girl named Laurel Hills who serves as -- well, let's be blunt. She's a plot device to reunite Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo in 2015. Laurel is based on a (20-year-old) friend of mine who once told me she felt completely and totally out of sync with reality. I pissed off the real-life Laurel and she wasn't talking to me for awhile.

I tried to escape into the world(s) of SLIDERS REBORN. And couldn't. Much to my horror, I couldn't write Laurel Hills without the real-world version of her around. I had alienated my muse.

Thankfully, we patched things up and I have been able to resume my efforts. However, Part 2 of SLIDERS REBORN is going to be a bit late -- it'll come on July 30, 2015 instead of July 30 as planned. Nigel Mitchell can confirm that the entire story outline is complete -- I just got delayed in converting it into script.

So let this be a lesson to you all. Never piss off the people you write about until *after* you've scripted all their dialogue.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

That's pretty funny.

I usually don't write about people I know. The closest that I came was one of my dogs. Two years ago, my black lab had a massive tumor in his spleen. We thought he was going to die and I was in the middle of writing a novel. I couldn't get him out of my head and I couldn't get work done, so I decided to put him into the story. The plan was to write an arc for this dog who gets sick, but my dog had surgery and recovered (he is still alive). So it seemed like bad luck to write him as sick and dying. So there he is in the books, but healthy. smile

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

How is your dog? I remember you telling us that the tests were (drumroll) inconclusive.

Yeah, including Laurie in SLIDERS REBORN may not have been the best strategic move. I guess, in my mind -- I love Quinn. I love Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo. They're my treasured imaginary friends. The sliders. And I love Laurie. Of course I would make her one of them. A slider. And then I screwed up and I was pretty sure I'd lost my friend. And I just couldn't write the Quinn and Laurel scenes and what they are to each other.

(It's not sexual or romantic.)

Anyway. Laurie's back. Laurel Hills will be fine. The sliders will return in July.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Informant wrote:

Okay, so I've kinda lost track of where we are with the Sliders rewatch. If someone knows which episodes we're supposed to have watched, feel free to post those updates.

The past few weeks have been hellish for me. My 14 year old dog was sick. He was put to sleep earlier today, so I'm a bit of a mess right now.

On top of that, I have the writing stress. I sent a novel out to a few beta readers and I'm waiting to see what they think of it. There are six books in this series and they all need to be prepped. I might be in over my head, but I guess it's better than not being able to write anything.

I do have some thoughts on season finales that I never got a chance to post. I think I have something written up for Arrow. If I can find that, I'll post it. If not, I will get back to it as soon as I can pull some thoughts together.


Sorry to hear about your dog sad

Sliders Rewatch has been going strong with the Sliders Fan Blog doing live tweeting, https://twitter.com/slidersfanblog, the Rewatch Podcast rewatchpodcast.podomatic.com doing recaps and reviews and SlidersCast back at it.  Reddit is also doing weekly series discussions on different topics.

Not sure if I am missing anything.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

My black lab, Rocky is going on two years without a spleen. He has some arthritis, but is in pretty good health otherwise. I think he and my other dog, Boo, are going to be depressed more than anything else since Buster is gone.

And typing that last part just about set me off again... It sucks.
But drowning my sorrows in TV shows and junk food is keeping my mind off of things for the most part.


Reddit. Hmm. That would be one of the ones that I have no idea how to use. smile

I do need to catch up on the rewatch

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Informant wrote:

My black lab, Rocky is going on two years without a spleen. He has some arthritis, but is in pretty good health otherwise. I think he and my other dog, Boo, are going to be depressed more than anything else since Buster is gone.

And typing that last part just about set me off again... It sucks.
But drowning my sorrows in TV shows and junk food is keeping my mind off of things for the most part.


Reddit. Hmm. That would be one of the ones that I have no idea how to use. smile

I do need to catch up on the rewatch


For reddit

reddit.com/r/sliders

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Reddit's cool. But at the end of the day, it's just a message board and on Sliders.tv, you can feel free to go off-topic and personal!

**

After months of using Other Web Browsers on my mini-laptop, Google Chrome is finally working! Well, the portable version of Chrome is working without crashing every two minutes. I've tried Maxthon, Internet Explorer, Opera and all of them had weird performance issues, which serves me right for buying a computer with 2GB of RAM and an Intel Atom processor that wasn't yet compatible with Chrome. Man. What a mistake the Asus T100TA has been.

I thought that, since I have my super-powerful HTPC in the living room serving as my desktop, a low-powered 10-inch laptop would be good enough for when I want to type in the bedroom or work at the coffee shop. But it hasn't been good enough at all; I have to do a lot of web data entry on this thing and either Chrome would crash or the other browsers would freeze up halfway in. For God's sake. My next laptop is i3-Intel with 4GB of RAM minimum.

**

My doctor has advised that I reduce my caffeine intake, so I've switched to decaf for the placebo effect. For years, coffee was either Tim Horton's or 8 O'Clock beans ground before drip-brewing. And after trying a lot of what's out there, my decaf of choice is supermarket Folgers with a dash of salt and cinnamon. I have painfully pedestrian tastes, but at least it's cheap.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I've been pushing out out more tid bits of Sliders "this and that" through Twitter and Instagram. All the while trying to prod myself to write another episode review.

slidecage.com
Twitter @slidersfanblog
Instagram slidersfanblog

Re: Personal Status Updates!

*sigh*

Two things. First, in preparation for the Rob Floyd interview, I rewatched the closing scenes of "The Seer." And I was horrified to realize -- I messed up my SLIDERS REBORN prequel. "Reprise"'s description and dialogue of "The Seer" -- I copied it out of one of the scripts. Clearly the wrong draft. It doesn't match what was actually filmed, who said which lines, the physical action -- even the final line of dialogue is wrong. Total screw up!

That's embarrassing.

Second, I'm working on the first segment of SLIDERS REBORN's Part 2. Nigel Mitchell kindly rewrote the alt-history for me. And it's going fine, but it's so dark! So grim. I'm not having fun.

It feels like work, for God's sake. It is now more obvious than ever to me that I don't really want to write SLIDERS. I want to write episodes of COMMUNITY with Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo -- and I will totally get back to that at the 1/3 mark, but this 1/3 is so grim.

Thank God tomorrow's a holiday and I can power-drive through the whole script.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Sorry about your dog Info, been there.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Thanks, Griz. It's been a week now... I assume that at some point, it will stop feeling weird to not see him every day. On the bright side, my emotional breakdowns are happening less! smile

RussianCabbie_Lotteryfan (did we ever come up with a shorter nickname for you? If so, it escapes me at the moment), I think my brain is rejecting the idea of any new social media pages. I have to do Facebook and Twitter... and I am not a huge fan of either. I think I belong in the 90's... Or possibly the 1940's (minus the whole World War thing).


ireactions, at some point, fanfic in general stopped being enough for me. Every once in a while, it's fun to come up with a story in my head for a show that I like, but now I usually just turn it into a unique story of its own. smile


Okay, the latest from my world:

Beta readers are getting back to me about the new novel that I'm having them read. So far, nobody wants me to burn the book and rot in Hell, so that's good. It takes place in the future, so I was worried that people would reject the history that is established in that world, but it seems to be going over well so far.
In a way, it reminds me of coming up with Sliders stories and figuring out the point at which history goes wonky and how it gets messed up, and trying to tell a story in that world that feels natural. It's fun. But tricky. I have the whole history mapped out and never really get to lay it all out for the readers, so I have to try to get the point across with bits and pieces of that history.

Anyway, so far there are no major rewrites to be done. With luck, I will be able to move on to book 2 soon! Then I'll have to find beta readers for the second book in the series... not sure quite how to do that unless they've read book 1. But I shall cross that bridge when I get to it!

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Sounds like it's going well!

I went back and rewrote "Reprise" to match the filmed version of "The Seer," mostly, aside from dropping a few lines of dialogue. And then replaced the file. Ah, obsessiveness.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I had a weird Netflix experience. I was watching SWITCHED AT BIRTH, which has lengthy segments in sign language. I was watching it on my Windows 7 HTPC, but when moving to my Windows 8 laptop, I switched into the Netflix Windows 8 app. And all the subtitles were gone! I had no ability to understand the sign language conversations.

But when I used the browser, the subtitle graphics were back on the very same scenes in which they were absent in the app!

Peculiar.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Hey, I need advice! My Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4, arguably the finest mini tablet ever made -- has developed a weird split between the frame and the screen. The screen is coming loose. Thankfully, I bought the extended warranty ($60 USD) and the shop says they'll let me trade in my broken tablet for a new one. However, I'll need to buy another $60 extended warranty if the new one develops a fault and I want a subsequent replacement. Would you guys take that deal or would you just take the replacement tablet and hope for the best?

Re: Personal Status Updates!

So far, the beta reader feedback is okay. The only issue I have is when the feedback contradicts other feedback and I have to decide which direction to go. I hate decision making. smile

After a couple of bad weeks, my mood was lightened a little when I saw a new review for one of my books on Amazon. I love any feedback, but five star reviews, complete with favorite lines of dialogue certainly make me happier than the negative stuff!


Okay, your Netflix issue... Was there a setting for closed captioning? Maybe there would be an option that you could use there. On screen text is an issue with Netflix sometimes. The X-Files just got on screen text, so for the first time since I started watching the show, I know where episodes take place!


Your tablet issue is weird indeed. It also seems strange that you would have to buy another warranty. What is to stop this place from messing with the products, just to keep you buying I to their warranties?

Is there a manufacturer warranty? Maybe you could talk to Samsung about the issue or check online to see if it is a known problem. It could have a fix that won't require you spending a ton of money.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

What's the contradiction?

**

As for Netflix, I'm not sure. There was a recent app update and then the sign language captioning started working again. Windows tablets are still not ready for primetime.

**

My replacement (Android) tablet arrived at the shop today. I went in for the exchange and they refiled the exchange as a refund followed by a new purchase -- which means the extended warranty was repurchased as well. I'm happy about that.

The screen lift is indeed a common problem with the simple solution of getting an exchange. ;-) One interpid tablet owner levered open the tablet and jammed in bluetack to hold the screen back in place.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Sounds like it all worked out. Nice!
When my stuff breaks, I usually just give it to my brother and he fixes it. It's hand, and way cheaper than warranties. smile


The contradictions that I'm thinking about in my book involve the prologue. Some like it, but suggested some changes. Some disliked it because it is more about the world that I'm establishing than any of the characters that play into the rest of the story, so it feels detatched to them. In my head, it serves a purpose, bridging our world to the world that I'm setting my story in. But I will kick around some ideas for how I might change it and if any of them sound better than what I have, I will change it. If not, I will probably just leave it.


Okay, new tech report. My brother (the one mentioned above) sometimes buys things that are damged or not working on Ebay, fixes them and resells them for profit. One of the places that he buys stuff from sometimes has smart watches. So he ended up buying me a Galaxy Gear Fit for pretty cheap. It has a little bit of scratching on it, but I don't care. It works fine and it's pretty cool. The only downside being that it might make me want to obsessively walk around. smile

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Wow. Can he be my brother too?

What do you do with a smartwatch, anyway?

On my gadget front -- I found my T100TA netbook/tablet/convertible a little slow when I first bought it. I thought it'd be fine for data entry and typing, especially with its 10 hours of battery life. But Chrome kept crashing when I was typing E-mails and I had to switch to browsers that wouldn't crash but would be laggy and slow and I grew to despise this thing. However, after a few recent updates, Chrome is crash-free and suddenly this computer feels like the perfect little laptop. It's weird how one app running well vastly elevated my opinion of this machine. It's still hopeless as a tablet, however. The Windows tablet app store is terrible.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I would love to participate in the Rewatch activity, but not being on Twitter, I feel disconnected. I do watch Sliders episodes pretty regularly, and usually watch the episodes as the SlidersCast reviews them (which usually gets me in the mood for another episode or two)...

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I apologize for not posting the episode threads along with the rewatch. When the board went down, I lost track of where we were and then life got crazy and now I have no clue which episode I am supposed to be posting about. I guess we could just post a thread for every episode and discuss whichever episodes we happen to want to discuss at any given time...

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I forgot half of my post... It's been a long day

My watch is geared toward fitness mainly. It does have other functions though. I can control media playback from it, or answer calls. It is mostly useful for answering calls when I have a headset or in the car, but I can also activate the speakerphone, so I can answer calls if the phone is across the room and I can't get to it. There are other apps, I'm sure, but it is still new to me.

When I got my S4, I was checking out the fitness app. Just to get through the setup process and look around, I answered questions with random answers. So when it asked my goal for steps taken per day, I chose 10,000.
Flash forward to years and my watch communicates with my phone. My goal is now set at 10,000 and I see how many steps I've taken every time I look at the time. I couldn't turn in for the night without winning the challenge. Lowering the number felt like cheating at a game.

This could be trouble.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

That's pretty cool. I can't see myself going out of my way to get a smartwatch, but I shall monitor the technology with interest.

I recently got a super-cheap Bluetooth keyboard and attempted to write some of Part 2 of the SLIDERS REBORN script on it. It was actually helpful to be able to use only one app at a time and have to focus completely on the Google Docs app. Also, it was a lot easier to carry a lightweight tablet instead of 2.5 pound laptop along with all the other stuff I carry in my bag. I found I got a bit stuck at times in scenes, forgetting what was supposed to happen next, so I had to have the outline on my phone. I'm copy-pasting the Google Docs text into Final Draft later to do the formatting.

But I'm wondering, if a 2.5 pound laptop is annoying to carry around is an indication that I really need to start carrying fewer items in my bag.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

So, one thing I am struggling with in SLIDERS REBORN: five characters. Five lead characters for a 120 page script is too many, and absolutely none of them can be dropped. I mean, a SLIDERS without Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo is false advertising. And the Laurel character was designed as a plot device to reunite the original sliders, but dismissing her after that feels artificial. And I do not have the energy to write 3 - 4 episodes of SLIDERS; three feature-length scripts and a novella are taxing enough.

The unfortunate result is that the characters are carried along by the momentum of the plot. Their actions do not define them. I seriously hit a point of irritation when Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo spent two scenes working on opening a door. And it also means that the parallel Earths aren't particularly well-defined -- which, quite frankly, is a blessing in disguise because world-building is not one of my strengths.

I'm trying to compensate for this by focusing on pastiching the actors. Making sure that while they may not do anything superbly definitive, every line resonates. And at times, I find myself swapping lines and rewriting them to avoid the reader forgetting that the character is in the room. So, maybe Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo spend a lot of time working that door, but they have a hilarious argument as they work it. This results in scripting where Matt Hutaff once exclaimed in dismay, "Everyone's comic relief!" And yes. This is my peculiar impression of Dan Harmon's SLIDERS only with a lot less ability, talent and literacy.

Back on the old Bboard, Informant remarked that no work is flawless and no piece of art excels in every area. That writers must have a vision and then decide what the priorities are in serving that vision. I'm okay with SLIDERS REBORN being less about sliding and more about the sliders, but it makes me feel a bit like Tim Kring -- in that it would probably work better if I paid Bryan Fuller to turn my scribblings and ramblings into finished content.

Another weird thing that happened: Laurie (whom the Laurel Hills character is based on, although the resulting character is actually nothing like Laurie) finally finished her box set of FIREFLY. And she hated "Objects in Space" because the evil and sadistic bounty hunter threatened to rape Kaylee. I said I didn't understand why a villain being a rapist was a problem. Laurie said that it triggered feelings of fear and vulnerability and powerlessness that FIREFLY had no business triggering unless it was really going to explore the subject of rape -- and that Kaylee whimpered pathetically when all the men got to fight the bounty hunter. I pointed out that River defeats the bounty hunter and Laurie said that I couldn't possibly understand how it feels to be a woman watching a show where rape is raised so casually.

After that, I went home and went back to a scene in Part 2 of REBORN where Laurel Hills is cornered by three thugs who claim they have uses for "fresh, young flesh" -- presumably, to force her into sexual slavery. I changed this to the thugs wanting Laurel for "fresh young kidneys" and "virgin lungs" and "mint condition eyes" and rewrote some of the earlier bits of Nigel Mitchell's world-building to include a huge demand for black market organs. I asked Laurie if this was acceptable and she said sure. I don't understand at all, but I found forced organ harvesting to be equally threatening and therefore an acceptable rewrite.

Anyway. I have finished 1/3 of Part 2, which, because of the darkness and misery, was really slow-going. The final 2/3 are more the oddball bantering and lunacy I prefer to write, so I expect I'll have a rough draft done by the end of the weekend. And spend the rest of the month adding setups to my payoffs as well as more jokes.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

ireactions wrote:

So, one thing I am struggling with in SLIDERS REBORN: five characters. Five lead characters for a 120 page script is too many, and absolutely none of them can be dropped. I mean, a SLIDERS without Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo is false advertising. And the Laurel character was designed as a plot device to reunite the original sliders, but dismissing her after that feels artificial. And I do not have the energy to write 3 - 4 episodes of SLIDERS; three feature-length scripts and a novella are taxing enough.

The unfortunate result is that the characters are carried along by the momentum of the plot. Their actions do not define them. I seriously hit a point of irritation when Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo spent two scenes working on opening a door. And it also means that the parallel Earths aren't particularly well-defined -- which, quite frankly, is a blessing in disguise because world-building is not one of my strengths.

I'm trying to compensate for this by focusing on pastiching the actors. Making sure that while they may not do anything superbly definitive, every line resonates. And at times, I find myself swapping lines and rewriting them to avoid the reader forgetting that the character is in the room. So, maybe Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo spend a lot of time working that door, but they have a hilarious argument as they work it. This results in scripting where Matt Hutaff once exclaimed in dismay, "Everyone's comic relief!" And yes. This is my peculiar impression of Dan Harmon's SLIDERS only with a lot less ability, talent and literacy.

Back on the old Bboard, Informant remarked that no work is flawless and no piece of art excels in every area. That writers must have a vision and then decide what the priorities are in serving that vision. I'm okay with SLIDERS REBORN being less about sliding and more about the sliders, but it makes me feel a bit like Tim Kring -- in that it would probably work better if I paid Bryan Fuller to turn my scribblings and ramblings into finished content.

Another weird thing that happened: Laurie (whom the Laurel Hills character is based on, although the resulting character is actually nothing like Laurie) finally finished her box set of FIREFLY. And she hated "Objects in Space" because the evil and sadistic bounty hunter threatened to rape Kaylee. I said I didn't understand why a villain being a rapist was a problem. Laurie said that it triggered feelings of fear and vulnerability and powerlessness that FIREFLY had no business triggering unless it was really going to explore the subject of rape -- and that Kaylee whimpered pathetically when all the men got to fight the bounty hunter. I pointed out that River defeats the bounty hunter and Laurie said that I couldn't possibly understand how it feels to be a woman watching a show where rape is raised so casually.

After that, I went home and went back to a scene in Part 2 of REBORN where Laurel Hills is cornered by three thugs who claim they have uses for "fresh, young flesh" -- presumably, to force her into sexual slavery. I changed this to the thugs wanting Laurel for "fresh young kidneys" and "virgin lungs" and "mint condition eyes" and rewrote some of the earlier bits of Nigel Mitchell's world-building to include a huge demand for black market organs. I asked Laurie if this was acceptable and she said sure. I don't understand at all, but I found forced organ harvesting to be equally threatening and therefore an acceptable rewrite.

Anyway. I have finished 1/3 of Part 2, which, because of the darkness and misery, was really slow-going. The final 2/3 are more the oddball bantering and lunacy I prefer to write, so I expect I'll have a rough draft done by the end of the weekend. And spend the rest of the month adding setups to my payoffs as well as more jokes.

Glad to see you are battling through it.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

May Informant have mercy on my soul -- I bought an iPad Mini 2.

My Samsung Tab S 8.4 went dead last night. Just stopped turning on completely. I went to the store and asked for an exchange. They offered me a refurbished model that creaked noisily no matter how I held it. I refused to accept it and they asked me what I wanted to do. I asked for a non-creaky Tab S and they didn't have any. I had a poke around the store and regretfully decided to transfer the cost of the Tab S and an additional ten bucks to buying a 32 GB iPad Mini 2. For all of Apple's many, many sins, it never feels like the screens are going to fall out of their tablets. I'll just turn off all the OS updates.

On the bright side, this means I can download the iOS exclusive HEROES REBORN app and tell you all about it.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Sorry that it took me a while to reply.

Anyway, it sounds like you're handling the challenges as well as you can. I can't actually say whether or not it is working until I dead the story, but I know the juggling act well.


I can understand being put off by the use of rape if it is used as a joke or not taken seriously. For example, I watched the first episode of Torchwood last night (not a Captain Jack fan, but I was bored) and one of the characters was obviously a rapist, but it was played for humor. I don't know how I am supposed to feel toward this character, but making light of that sequence made the whole episode feel disgusting to me.

I was worried about putting some characters of mine in that type of situation lately, but both sequences were used to say something about the characters, so I kept them in.

"Objects in Space" was supposed to disgust us on a primal level. We weren't cheering for rape or laughing at it. I didn't think its inclusion was wrong.


I just want to say that the "You're a (fill in the blank) so you can't possibly understand..." line is one of my pet peeves. Most things aren't that difficult to grasp. Most people aren't incredibly unique. This is just a way of invalidating someone else's point of view and shutting them up without putting any effort into it.
And usually, the people who use that line on me are the first ones in line to offer up their opinions on my life or my situation.

Argh. Sorry for the rant. Like I said, it is a pet peeve.


As for the iPad... One of my brothers got one of those for free with some store credits or something. I considered kicking him out of the family, but it was easier to just pretend that the iPad never happened. smile

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

The iPad Mini 2 is beautifully built. I definitely don't feel like the screen is going to fall out, unlike that Tab S 8.4's disturbingly loose and creaky screen. I was worried about the lack of a microSD card slot, but 23 GB of available storage after installing all my apps has proven sufficient so long as I choose books, comics and documents I plan to read over a month as opposed to over a year.

I find irksome to work with sandboxed apps. I want to load all my ePubs and PDFs into the memory and then have each app work with the same files. Instead, I need to copy my stuff into a file manager app. Then open the file in the file manager, which will claim it can't open the file but offer to copy it into the sandbox of the ebook reader / PDF annotator / etc... It's rather crude. The function of apps is simple to the point of being somewhat handicapping.

At the same time, the OS itself is a polished piece of work. There's edge-touch detection: I can rest my fingers on the side of the screen to hold the tablet without the tablet registering that as a touch. I don't need to install apps to hibernate apps in the background. The screen rotates instantly as opposed to a 1 - 2 second pause. I definitely made sure to download all the apps I want and turn off all the updates, however. I have no doubt that any iOS update will move the user experience from smooth responsiveness to stuttering and freezing to encourage me to buy a newer iPad.

I miss how super-customizable and open Android is -- but I've still got that on the S3 phone.

To compensate me for more trouble and/or make sure I never ever returned to the store, the Staples manager gave me some store credit and applied it to buying Applecare+ insurance, meaning I'll have to go to the Apple Store if I have anymore issues. I think it'll be fine. It's kind of a shame about the Tab S, however. I don't know if I was having a lot of bad luck with the screen falling out and the battery going dead and the creaky replacements on offer or if something is wrong with the workmanship across the board.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

By brother and his wife have Samsung tablets and pretty much every cell phone in my family is Samsung and I've never hear of any of those glass and creaking issues (though battery issues seem to come and go). That is weird.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

It's entirely possible that Staples was selling me open box items (at the same price as the sealed box items). Staples does not reduce the price of open box sales. Maybe they were returned for a reason. They did not have any unopened Tab S 8.4s in stock -- the whole city seemed to be out. And by then, I was so soured on the whole Samsung tablet experience that I went crawling back to Apple.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Hey, you can install non Apple keyboards on their devices now! Glad to have Swype typing back.

33 (edited by intangirble 2015-07-22 18:24:35)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Hi! New person here, though I've been leaving comments on Earth Prime here and there. I seriously loved Sliders as a kid, and recently got back into it after showing my wife "Luck of the Draw" and realising just how much I adored it. I've blogged a little about it on my mostly-videogames blog over here: http://intangirble.wordpress.com/2015/0 … n-history/ and recently put up a little post about Wade and the Hanged Man tarot card here: http://behemothblogging.tumblr.com/post … s-get-some

Okay, now that I'm done plugging myself: ireactions, I adore what you're doing with Sliders Reborn and I'm really stoked to see the next part. Adding a second female character gives things an interesting dynamic - honestly, though I didn't like Maggie's character I'm almost sad she couldn't have made up with Wade and stuck around with her, because having two women in the group stops Wade from getting shoehorned into being "the chick" and thus left out of the Real Action. Which Sliders tried its best not to do, but she does get shoved aside at times. (Though I'd be equally happy if you were just writing the original four - you write them well.)

On top of that, the screenplay format and the way you've written it feels... right. What I've read so far feels like the script for a really top-tier episode of Sliders, and it's exciting to feel like I have more of that to come.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

SLIDERS REBORN may be delayed by another couple weeks. The reason: Nigel Mitchell, possibly the best SLIDERS writer ever, E-mailed me yesterday saying he has some more alt-history material to send my way. This, for me, is the equivalent of Tracy Torme and Robert K. Weiss knocking on my door to say they want to help me write my story. Naturally, I'll make time for them -- after Nigel's had his say.

I am nearly done the first draft of SLIDERS REBORN Part 2. I am going to spend the weekend punching up the scenes for a July 30 release -- but if Nigel's feedback requires more time to implement, then I will take that time.

That's all for now on this subject except to say that Maggie is in Part 2 of SLIDERS REBORN. :-)

**

I enjoyed your Tumblr posts on SLIDERS. It's weird to realize that SLIDERS pre-dated the multimedia-capable approach that modern fandom has with GIFs and fanvids and fan-films and manipulated images. SLIDERS is so old that you can't even find decent resolution photos of the cast in their 90s clothes and hairstyles.

I can assure you that every detail of my account of Kari Wuhrer's post SLIDERS career is true, right down to the breast implant encapsulation and getting fired from a soap opera for getting pregnant. Kari's plastic surgery nightmare was the feature of many articles including one she wrote herself. The pregnancy-firing was another public affair; there was a nasty lawsuit that followed. You can easily find confirmation of these biographical details via Google.

35 (edited by intangirble 2015-07-22 22:43:49)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Oh, I do believe it. (And now that I actually have a way to talk to you in person as it were, I hope it's okay that I used your comment?) It's just... so mindblowing (if horrible) to hear that it went that way. It's just this perfect, terrible storm of everything that's wrong with the media industry, and though I feel absolutely awful for everyone involved, it's very powerfully educational.

And yes, I love Nigel Mitchell's stuff. I'd definitely be with you on waiting for his input... even if it means all of us chomping at the bit have to wait a little longer. ;)

I'd been thinking that about the modern-Tumblr-fandom approach myself. I've been trying to make up for it a little with photosets and the like - I've at least seen some fanvids on YouTube and apparently this is happening. But yeah, it's impossible to get HQ anything of Sliders. I was really disappointed at just how poor quality the DVD transfers are just because it makes it nearly impossible to get good screencaps. I love doing image manips, but most of the techniques I'm used to using on them don't work with the grainy, artifacted images I cap from the DVDs. I'm starting to feel I'd almost have better luck ripping some old VHSes. :/

36 (edited by omnimercurial 2015-07-23 03:45:47)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

That may well be the case. I had a friend at the time (90's) who had a Betamax which is higher quality in Visuals than VHS etc. I teased him at the time but I am a little Jealous now. smile

There was a TV Show on CH4 in the UK at the Turn of the Millennium called Vids which was Anarchic and Hilarious while still giving insightful Reviews of pretty much anything on Tape or Disc. That would have vanished if not for one of the Presenters himself making a Copy direct from the Master Tapes at the time.
Nigel Buckland he is called and his Co Presenter is/was Steph Gardener.
They did a Revived version (Audio only) Podcast back in 2012 but sadly have not continued since. Damn Shame.
I kind of hope they get their own Youtube Channel maybe with Ads to fund them or maybe do a Kickstarter.
Their shows cancellation was a little crazy as they got very high ratings for late night Telly and had a large Cult following.

There is a Youtube Account in the name of mclumperty that has the Vids Episodes if you want to check out their prior work at least though.

Be warned though there is Bad Language. smile

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

intangirble wrote:

the screenplay format and the way you've written it feels... right. What I've read so far feels like the script for a really top-tier episode of Sliders, and it's exciting to feel like I have more of that to come.

It's fitting how you say that SLIDERS REBORN so far *feels* right to you. I think a part of it is that nothing I've written is physically impossible to film with the actors at their current ages. But also, REBORN's Part 1 was plotted intuitively rather than logically, and it exasperated my poor editors in some ways.

Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo are my friends. What would I want for my friends in 2015?

I'd want them to be alive and well and home. I'd want home to be normal. I'd want to know that after "Paradise Lost" and "The Exodus" and "Genesis" and "The Chasm" and "The Unstuck Man" and "Requiem" and "The Seer," everyone was reunited (somehow) and the Kromagg invasion of Earth was erased (somehow) and everyone got home (somehow).

At the same time, nothing has ever felt more false to me than those earnest fanfics where Rembrandt comes out of the vortex in "The Seer" and Professor Arturo is waiting for him and they find Wade somewhere, go back to "The Seer"'s Earths, split the Quinns, retrieve Colin, liberate Earth Prime or reveal it wasn't home after all, send Diana and Mallory home, find Maggie a happy ending, reveal the Kromagg Prime backstory was a sham, resolve Colin and get the original sliders home.

The problem with those stories, in my view: they're the equivalent of pulling a rabbit out of a hat while narrating how the hat will be placed on a table with a hidden compartment in which the rabbit will enter the hat. The rabbit coming out of the hat/the sliders being reunited -- that's the only part of the trick that should be shown to the audience.

The challenge is not to attempt to make the impossible seem plausible. Instead, it's to make the emotion of the reunion so stirringly joyful that any explanation is nearly irrelevant. To show that if you will swallow the brick-sized contrivance that Wade is somehow alive, Quinn has somehow been restored and they have somehow found Arturo and now located Rembrandt, you will be be rewarded. You will be reunited with four delightful characters who bounce off each other beautifully. If an explanation does come, it mustn't be for its own sake, but serve whatever post-reunion story is told.

I think that's part of how "Reunion" feels right; there is a desire to know that the Season 3 - 5 plots were resolved, but with the knowledge that a point-by-point account would be a convoluted mess. "Reunion" also serves two mutually exclusive wishes: to know that our four friends are happy -- and to see them sliding randomly again. Random sliding is SLIDERS' storytelling engine. It lets you plug the characters into any kind of story and sets up a ticking clock and an exit for each adventure.

But Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo are in their 40s, 60s and 70s. They wouldn't return to sliding without screaming in protest. Yet, it's what they were built to do and to fail to put them back to doing what they do best is a dis-service to the characters.

Which necessitates another contrivance -- Laurel Hills as a catalyst to reunite the cast and justify sending them back into random sliding. Again, my editors were not in favour of a lot of this, specifically because I allowed intuition to override sense and logic.

That said, intuitive writing tends to serve characters effectively while failing to do the same for plots, or at least SLIDERS plots. The unfortunate truth is that any SLIDERS story requires a certain degree of historical and scientific knowledge that I just can't muster the energy to research when it comes to fanfic.

If I were getting paid, then absolutely, I would spend months on that. But SLIDERS fanfic is something I'm cranking out over weekends and if it becomes unpaid labour, it stops being fun and it doesn't get done. Which is why I was really grateful that Nigel is willing to review my stuff and suggest changes, and, in some cases, outright replacements. History is not my strength. Science is not my strength. These are serious liabilities when writing SLIDERS stories, and we must also remember that Nigel is a magician, not a wizard. So, we'll see.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

ireactions wrote:

Quinn, Wade, Rembrandt and Arturo are my friends. What would I want for my friends in 2015?

And I think the fact that you're going into it with that attitude is part of what makes it feel right. :)

I think what Sliders lost, over the seasons, was a sense of kindness and respect towards the characters, and wanting to see them succeed. The new people coming in didn't respect the show, they didn't respect the writers, they didn't respect the actors, and that filtered through to how the characters got treated. They were more interested in getting cheap laughs at the expense of actors they had a grudge against than the genuine, group-based humour that the early episodes had.

Wanting to make things right for those people who were done so wrong... well, I think that's why almost any of us are writing Sliders fic these days. :) But that you have it, consciously, in your head as a prime concern is something that I think helps a lot. And that you want it to feel real... that's the other half. I want to see the original four together and happy and safe as much as anyone, but you're right in that it can't be done too quickly or too simply, or it feels fake. You can't just say "and they all lived happily ever after", however much we all want that. We want it... but we want to be convinced of it, not just told it.

So yeah, in terms of goals I think you're on the ball here. In terms of plot... heh, I understand that concern all too well. The vast majority of my fics are character vignettes. I can't plot to save my life, and often end up going to someone else to help. I hope the meeting of minds between you and Nigel goes well here.

That said, I think some contrivance is... well, like you said, it's necessary. The whole of Sliders is a contrivance, really: why would three people jump so willingly into a wormhole without being sure that everything would work as planned? Why do they always get involved with the politics of other worlds despite their repeated mantra of "no involvement"? Because that's what's required to make the show run. As fans, we want to hold things to as high a standard as possible - but still, it's important to remember that the original show takes a lot of liberties, and wouldn't have worked without some of them. It's not the worst possible sin.

All of which is to say: I think you'll do fine.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

And now for something completely different --

http://www.livingthedreamshow.com/allison-mack/

Allison Mack guested on Phil Morris' talk show (Phil played the Martian Manhunter on SMALLVILLE, among other things). It's an incredibly boring interview; Mack is, for whatever reason, extremely subdued and low-key throughout. But she said one really interesting thing. She said that she experienced a mid-life crisis during SMALLVILLE around -- judging by the numbers she was throwing out -- Season 7. She talked about how from age 4, her whole life had been acting. She was super-ambitions, grabbing every part she could. Her holy grail was to find a successful TV role that would go on indefinitely.

She got cast on SMALLVILLE. A regular role. The show kept getting renewed. Financially and professionally, Allison Mack was a success story. Internally, she felt completely blank and lost and utterly unfulfilled. Her work was hollow and meaningless and she felt detached from what she was doing and her life seemed composed of empty material achievements. She eventually found herself when she started focusing on theatre and stageplays and she realized that she wasn't happy reading other people's words; she wanted to create her own. It's a fairly dull podcast, to be blunt, but Mack drops these snippets here and there while being incredibly guarded and withdrawn -- and so now I'm going to engage in theoretical armchair psychology.

I think Mack was delighted to find success on SMALLVILLE, but as seasons passed, she realized that Chloe Sullivan was a completely irrelevant character. SMALLVILLE, for better or worse, was about Clark, Lex and Lana. Chloe was totally unnecessary as far as the show was concerned. She was a regular character who had about as much material as a guest-star; she was scripted like an extra. Because the cast and crew and creators liked her, as they did John Glover, they kept her around even though they really didn't know what to do with her.

In the clumsy teen soap of SMALLVILLE, Chloe was Clark's secondary love interest. And the creators had no intention of ever advancing that, so Chloe was trapped as Clark's secondary love interest, perpetually weepy and whiny and her character contorted into bizarre shapes like her nonsensical healing powers. When Lois Lane was introduced, Chloe's journalistic skills became even more surplus to requirements. The material for Chloe was ghastly ghastly ghastly from Seasons 2 - 7. Allison probably thought about quitting, but she didn't -- as she says in the podcast, a long-running regular role on a successful show was everything an actor could want. Financially, it would be insane to walk away from a job most people never, ever, ever get to have.

So she took the money and did her job. Allison Mack's acting was always superb no matter how bad the material. She was a professional and she did a professional's job and Allison Mack is always incandescent onscreen even when the role is beneath her. But the result was that Mack became emotionally distant from Chloe and SMALLVILLE. It became a job. A job she did for money. A job she excelled at, but just a job. A chore.

And by the time Season 8 made her the female lead of the show, it was too late. Allison Mack cared about doing a good job, she cared about the fans, but she didn't care about *Chloe.* How could she? The writers didn't. Mack was offered a truckload of money and increased screentime for a two-year extension on her contract that took her through to Season 9 and she accepted. But after Seasons 2 - 7, Mack was beginning to wear out.

The vast improvement of Seasons 8 - 9 just came too late. SMALLVILLE and its fans were, to Allison Mack, a professional commitment. But not a personal one. SMALLVILLE was simply a job now. Had been for years. By the end of Season 9, I think Allison Mack was *completely* burnt out on acting professionally without any kind of personal investment.

She quit the show. She desperately needed a break. But, again, professionalism: she signed to do a small number of episodes so as to avoid abandoning the series. And she made sure to be free for the series finale.

SMALLVILLE's tenth season floundered badly. And while Mack's absence doesn't explain all of it, the sad truth is that even a detached and emotionally distanced Allison Mack is still a brilliant actress. Without Allison Mack, SMALLVILLE lost its very best performer who endeared herself to the audience. As charming as Lois and Clark were by Season 10, it just wasn't as compelling without Chloe and Mack's screen presence. If Chloe had been written in Seasons 2 - 7 as well as she'd been written in Seasons 8 - 9, maybe Mack would have felt differently.

Make no mistake, this is total theoretical armchair psychology from a boring podcast. Don't take it seriously.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

For what it's worth I think you make good points.
When Smallville first Season came on I had a crush on the Chloe Character due to her Loyalty, Courage and Drive. Those qualities were watered down heavily later on as you correctly pointed out due to no clear character development due to writer imposed rewinds and stasis.

I kind of hated Clark in all honesty and after a while futilely hoped he would get killed permanently.... Yeah I know, was never going to happen.

Lois Lanes introduction always grated on me as she was a feature if Adult Career era Clark/Supes which did not really belong in Smallville due to.... You know, being about Smallville and Clark's Teenage/Formative years.

By the time of the permanent move to Metropolis and Daily Planet life sure bring in Lois but not before.

Properly planned Arcs of Growth and Maturity for Clark in the vein of Babylon 5's Show Plan/Bible would have been far superior to what we got.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Tired. Forgive poor grammar and meandering train of thought.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Apropos of nothing: Sliders in ten popular Tumblr text posts.

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I read most of these when you first started posting here. Neat stuff. Also reading your gaming blog.

**

I expect to have a near-final draft SLIDERS REBORN: "Revelation" ready by Sunday or Monday. Nigel strongly advised on the alt-histories, but things shifted a bit as I went from writing an outline to writing a script. Some things were shortened and compressed; other ideas didn't fit the screenplay format and were dropped. So, I think I'm going to delay Part 2 to August 16 and send Nigel the script and let him work through it and see what he'd amend.

I did some writing today at a library and a coffee shop and then a restaurant and then a bar. And I discovered, to my horror, that while I can work effectively in a library, I am unable to write dialogue in eateries with music and background chatter. I have, however, been able to get a lot of writing done on my Bluetooth keyboard and tablet. There's something about only having one app at a time to work on that forces me to focus.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

That is a tricky situation that Allison was in. I can see how she would easily get frustrated, but it is a shame because this genre of television allowed her possibilities that aren't open to people who are starring on normal procedurals or medical dramas. Despite being underused and misused, Chloe was an incredibly popular character. She probably could have used that to build a fanbase that would have kept her in work for decades, and it would have also made the experience more fun for her. Interacting with fans would have been a big part of that, but she could have also created projects of her own or taken part in other projects that would put that Smallville fanbase to good use. Felicia Day may not be my favorite person on Supernatural, but her early appearances on Buffy (in a group that was largely hated by the fans) opened doors for her that led to work on other Joss Whedon shows, and shows like Supernatural and Eureka. But she built that momentum by creating her own content online and interacting with fans, mostly about stuff that she already loved.

If Felicia could do that, Allison could have done it much more easily. The problem is, I'm not sure that Allison really fits into the geek community or knows how to take advantage of it. What I've seen of her blogs, etc. shows her to be more of a... I don't know how to put it... wine drinking, poetry reading, yoga taking type of person. More Downton Abbey, less Dr. Who.

The job on Smallville would have been a huge opportunity for anyone in the proper mindset. Zachary Levi built Chuck into Nerd HQ. Stephen Amell uses Facebook and Twitter to interact with fans, building his CW success into a mainstream media-friendly platform for building not only his acting career, but his wine company and his charitable efforts. And yes, these were the leads of their shows, but it isn't about that. It's about how they built a relationship with their fans. Allison had millions of fans, but never turned them into millions of followers.

People with bit parts on shows like Star Trek, Arrow, The Flash, Supernatural, etc. can make a living and travel the world simply doing conventions. But they also end up working together on each other's projects, big and small.

Yes, the Smallville writers failed her and her character for many years. But that would have given her more free time than any other person on the show.


I don't know. You can tell when a show's cast actually wants to be there and when they don't. There is something special that happens on screen when the actors are excited to be there, or grateful for the opportunity. It creates a connection between them and the audience. We're all part of the same team. Jensen and Jared. The casts of Arrow and The Flash... With Smallville, it did seem like the show was swimming against the tide a lot of the time. I get why she was frustrated and why it wasn't a fun experience. It's just a shame.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

45 (edited by omnimercurial 2015-07-27 00:19:40)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Looking forward to seeing your Work soon ireactions. smile
Given your issues with AH and Divergent Histories etc maybe we should make a Dedicated Thread for all of us to post Ideas, Discuss, Collaborate and Create on?

@Informant
Have not seen Arrow as of yet but did see my first Ep of Gotham last Week. It wasn't the Pilot/Premiere but instead an Episode about "A Baloon Man" with some Mafia, Penguin and Lesbian Ex Subplots attached/interlaced.
Might try and watch it again this Week if I can find out what Channel, Day and Time it was on last big_smile Judging it based on One Ep seems wrong but I'm curious as to your take on this show. Would you recommend it?

Saw Xena on Sat too.... As much as I loved it as a Kid.... God some is terribad.
I gave up on it when I was younger in the India/Gabrielle turned Yazoo style 80's Super Short Haircut Arc.

Saw the end of her Stay in Chin and return to Greece on Sat. Not to impressed. There was some fun Eps but Bad too. Have to say the Heavy Judeo Christian Yahwe Elements coming into play with this Twilight stuff is making me very uncomfortable. It just doesn't mesh well. The whole we don't need Gods stuff would be fine alone but when blended with the Eli and Angel Callisto schtick it just reeks of ill thought out hypocrisy to me.
"You don't need God's!" "Just Yahwe!" "A God!" "Please ignore that last bit!"

*Growl*

Also why protect this Supernatural Child when the last one was A-OK to put down? Double Standards Ahoy!


I am enjoying a rewatch of Dark Angel with Jessica Alba though. Although her Characters impulsive selfishness does grate at times.... Still good.
Always felt sad that did not get a Third Season to eiher space out the Plots a little or build on prior events.
Anybody here know any behind the scenes info re Dark Angel like has been shared re Sliders and Andromeda in the past on this Board?


P.S. May have mispelt Yahwe... Meh....

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I really like Gotham. The balloon episode is one of their more comic-bookish episodes. Most of them aren't that extreme. What I like about the show is that it does embrace the comic book side. I was worried that they would make a standard procedural and slap the Gotham name on it, but the show's look and feel is based on the Gotham City that I've grown up with, and the plots and characters still have the comic book spirit in them.

I would definitely itely recommend the series. It isn't for everyone, but I like it a lot. Just don't get bogged down with trying to figure out how each character's age lines up with established Batman mythology. This is its own thing.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I find GOTHAM visually cartoonish but very dark -- and the mismatch doesn't grab me. If it's your thing, enjoy! :-) I lost interest halfway into the series. That said, I never gave up on AGENTS OF SHIELD, so it just means my tolerance is in different areas.

I don't think SMALLVILLE made Allison Mack unhappy,  but it also wasn't making her happy -- and that, psychologically, can be a serious issue if a job like SMALLVILLE was essentially the main goal of her career. I think nine seasons on a TV show like that should have been enough for Allison to pretty much retire, so it wasn't a money or a business issue. I would describe Allison as an elegant hippie spiritualist.

In contrast, I think if Allison had played, say, Veronica Mars for nine years, she would have been very happy.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

To me, Gotham feels almost like a live action version of the Batman Animated Series. It is more serious and darker than the cartoon, of course, but it feels like the same place in a lot of ways.

For the record, I still watch Agents of SHIELD. I just think that it is a poorly made series. Especially when you look at what Arrow and The Flash have done with TV budgets. Agent Carter had the benefit of being set in the past, so the lower quality production actually felt like the "past" that we're all familiar with, which is pretty much the lower quality productions of the past.


When Veronica Mars began, I admit that I was seeing some Chloe similarities. But the thing about that show is that so much energy came from the people making the show. So many of them loved the show and cared about it, from the actors all the way back to set designers. Ryan Hansen was an extra (I think... he might have been a day player) who was given one line in one episode. From that one line he built the character of Dick Casablancas who was so popular that Ryan recently had his own tie-in series on the CW's website (I think it is about Ryan trying to get a Dick series made).
Yes, Allison is a great actress. Yes, she was the shining star of Smallville. But could she carry a series like Veronica Mars, which would rely so much on her actually loving the character and the work? I don't know. Would she actually love it based on the material, or would the grind of playing one character every day for nine months out of the year wear on her the way Smallville wore on her? TV work isn't for everyone. If Allison is more of the type of actress who loves to jump around from character to character and travel and live a gypsy life, working on any TV series is going to feel oppressive to her in the long run.

Lana and Lex were given more screen time on Smallville, but I dare say that Chloe was to Smallville what Deep Space Nine was to the Star Trek franchise. She was the rogue element who people loved but who flew under the radar enough to get away with stuff that other characters couldn't. She had much smoother character development than most of the characters. She was allowed to have a personality. She was allowed to be natural, more than any other character on the series. Of all of the people on Smallville, I would think that she would be the most fulfilled at the end, because her character had one arc (more or less) and wasn't constantly being retooled for the sake of false drama. Imagine how much more lovable Lana could have been if she were treated the way Chloe was.

I'm not saying anything bad about Allison. I just think that any long term TV work might not be her thing.



On another note, I've been kinda bored at night lately, so I have tried out Torchwood while I wait for new Dr. Who episodes to show up on Netflix. People seem to love Torchwood, but it is a horribly made series. I don't get why anyone likes it! Everything from the writing to the production quality is just bad.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

49 (edited by omnimercurial 2015-07-28 04:15:31)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

It's interesting that you see growth in Chloe. Compared to Lana's patchwork quilt of Frankensteined stuff you have a point but I guess I will always see more of Chloe's path as Flip Flops and Staleness sadly.

You make a good point on Acting Life and it's sub varients.
Some Actors Shine on the big screen but are ill suited to TV.
Similar differences are there for Board Treaders too.
It's a rare Actor who straddles each aspect with equal grace and thrives in the environment too.

Mmmmm. I don't like Torchwood either.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

50 (edited by Informant 2015-07-28 09:04:18)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Well, you have to stand back and kinda squint in order to see the Chloe development, but it is there. Aside from Clark, she had the most consistent character and purpose on the show. She had personality, which many of the characters lost over time. Her transition from reporter to Watchtower made so much more sense than, say, Lana's transition from cheerleader/waitress to super fighter, infused with a techno super suit.

It wasn't all great (the healing power thing was pointless). But on that show, she had some of the best character work.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

There was this horrible, horrible summer in my life where I was unemployed and severely depressed. Naturally, I watched 2 seasons of TORCHWOOD and they were TERRIBLE. I'm told that the third season, CHILDREN OF EARTH, was a massive improvement -- but my fortunes and overall mood had improved by then, so I never got around to seeing it or the following series, MIRACLE DAY, which I also heard was okay.

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It is so bad! I don't think that the later seasons could be good enough to make up for it. I never do this but... Should I maybe skip ahead?

I don't get how you recover from making one of your main characters into a rapist in episode 1. And they played it for laughs!

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

53 (edited by omnimercurial 2015-07-28 21:51:39)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

BBC have gone very downhill sadly. Rather than continue their tradition of Quality Independant Programming they have instead decided to mimic some of the Worst offerings of the Commercial Channels like Reality TV programmes and Celeb Culture Shows. It makes me sick.

The only Programmes that bucked the new trend in the last 3 years were a BBC Three show called "The Revolution will be Televised" and "Orphan Black" which is an International Co-Production.

There are a few good Programmes from abroad like "Il Commisario Montalbano" to break up the Awfulness but they are NOT BBC Productions.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

"The Revolution will be Televised" has a long but intriguing title. What is it about?

I just got through season 2 of "Orphan Black"... It isn't a bad show, bit I do kinda think that it is overrated. It reminds me a bit of some of the shows that networks were experimenting with in the 90's, with many of the same tropes.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I don't know if skipping ahead on TORCHWOOD would help; I just know that Seasons 1 - 2 were largely panned for exactly the sort of thing you're pointing out, especially presenting a rapist as a heroic and moral figure. Season 2 was a mild improvement, but TORCHWOOD is fundamentally flawed. It claims that the organization is composed of professional elites, but they're all squabbling, immature morons who respond to every bad situation by making it worse. And the show presents these arguing, unfaithful, self-indulgent loons as characters in a 'mature' drama.

I do recall on a defunct message board a horde of posters screeching at me that the writer didn't intend for it to be rape, so I shouldn't refer to it as such. CHILDREN OF EARTH and MIRACLE DAY are well-liked, but that rapist character was turned into a zombie and then killed off after Season 2, if that's any help. Personally, I am steering clear of TORCHWOOD and any show that presents self-indulgent gratification as maturity.

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I think I just need a better show to watch when I'm bored... Hmm...

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

Found this site:
http://liztellsfrank.com/2012/10/16/tor … -it-guide/

Figured that I would try to see if the show is any better when using a skip-it guide. We'll see.

But yes. I agree with everything you said about the characters. And some of the show's flaws are so weird. Like the scene where Jack teaches whats-her-name how to use a gun... Don't shoot like that. Especially a beginner. Honestly. Did they not have a consultant on hand? If not, just don't do the scene. Spreading bad gun safety around is dangerous.

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

Tried the site's recommendation for a Torchwood episode. Still sucked. I am moving on. smile

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

THE SARAH JANE SMITH ADVENTURES is like the anti-TORCHWOOD in many ways. It is, inexplicably, produced by the same team that does TORCHWOOD.

http://www.veoh.com/watch/v20281225bpyhaYN2

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Informant wrote:

"The Revolution will be Televised" has a long but intriguing title. What is it about?

I just got through season 2 of "Orphan Black"... It isn't a bad show, bit I do kinda think that it is overrated. It reminds me a bit of some of the shows that networks were experimenting with in the 90's, with many of the same tropes.

It's a Comedy/Satire Show. It usually tackles the Govt and Establishment but sometimes dabbles in other things too. It's sadly the only UK show that does so anymore too. It gets a bit too preachy on the odd subject but 80% of the time it's pretty sharp and funny.

I'd probably be a little harsher on it if it had competition but it doesn't.
Bremner Bird and Fortune used to be the best Political Satire Programme but it has not been on the Air for a while now, I hope it comes back on but won't get my hopes up.

Brass Eye, The Mark Thomas Comedy Product and In the Thick of it were good too but in different ways.

I have only seen S1 of Orphan Black so cannot say re S2 but I liked S1 despite griping about parts of it and guessing some plot twists very early on.

@ireactions

Sarah Jane Adventures sadly will not continue as the Main Actress Passed away a while ago.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Politics in film and television have been pretty poorly handled for a while now. It is all about pushing agendas, rather than exploring ideas. This results in any character who doesn't share the central belief of the writers to be depicted as soulless and evil. It turns into brainless propaganda at some point (speaking of which, I just wrote a book series which is admittedly, completely biased... Whatever. smile )
Good political satire sounds like it would be refreshing. Unfortunately, I probably wouldn't get British political humor.

Orphan Black is one of those shows which sticks close to the tropes. The big evil of the series is an eeeevil corporation. I feel like people don't even try to build villains anymore. It is just the same corporation, renamed for whichever show is using it. And they don't really add anything to it. People praise the actress for her work in all of those roles. She does a good job, don't get me wrong, but all of those characters are such caricatures that it really doesn't require great nuance. When you compare it to Anna Torv's work on Fringe, it seems so cartoonish.
It is a fun show to binge watch, but it just doesn't offer anything new. It could have aired on the Sci-fi Channel in the 90's.

I tried the new Scream series tonight. The first episode wasn't too bad. I'm surprised. Definitely better than the last two movies.


The Sarah Jane Adventures! I need to try that one. I remember seeing her on Dr. Who and looking up the character's background.

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

It's a little hard to comment re Political Satire in some ways as perceptions vary but you are quite right re shallow Propoganda propogating instead of holding up a Mirror in most cases.

Brass Eye for example was very shocking at the time and did not pull it's punches at all while blending the Puerile with some very Sophisticated Ploys and Complex Subject matter.

Mark Thomas for example though WAS Left Wing.... To the Max BUT he did back everything up with evidence via investigation up to and including dangerous Undercover work and Hazourdous Environments.
Regardless of his Politics he was damn brave and didn't just shoot his mouth of based on opinion and assumption yet he still made the material funny while making a point and drawing attention to things like Unsecured Nuclear Waste posing both Health Risks and potential for use in Dirty Bomb Production, Government Corruption, Illegal Arms Sales that had been endorsed by the Govt and in some cases facillitated etc etc.

The Newish Revolution Will be Televised is worth a look. It focuses mainly on National UK stuff which is it's strength in my opinion whereas when it does go international it is weak.... Preachy.

Good aspects are Impersonating Political Representatives who are blatant characatures of the Worst of the Big Parties aspects yet still managing to sneak into Party Functions and events while being accepted as if normal which says something about how many people within said parties match said Characatures. Also good is how they dohighlight new Legislation re Employment that had been stealthily entered into Law and drawing attention to it. Disabled People being targeted by Govt Initiatives in a almost Criminal manner and Digging up Financial records that prove misuse of Public Money etc

The Left Wing in the UK is pretty much a dead beast but a lot of US People strangely (to me at least) think there is a strong Left here.
You hear a lot of Social Justice Crusaders trying to drown out everyone else trying to claim the Mantle of the Left but it does not fit them and switches many People off.

There used to be a 90's comedy called Drop the Dead Donkey which embraced a view of the World from different types of Journalists perspectives, it was good but rather dated now. It came out around the same time as the Original British Version of House of Cards too but was rather more Earthy and Raucous in tone.

There is a Show called Charlie Brookers Weekly Wipe which very sarcastically mocks the growing Celebrity Culture and plague of Reality TV with associated dumbing down of News Casting, Programming range etc but not much more than that. It's not Terrible but has a very narrow focus.

There is a new Sci Fi in the UK called Humans airing on Channel 4 if you want to check that out?
It's very much a Five minutes into the Future deal but it focuses less on the Tech and more on the Social consequences like Family Life, Relationships, Employment, Alienationation etc.

It too suffers from Evil Corp Syndrome but at least their motivations are not hyped up too much, protect the profit margin and avoid a scandal.
A rare thing though is that some in story implications may have the Corp aiming to protect People.... Via enlightened self interest of course but still.... Better than usual.... Slightly. wink

Alternatively last year or the year before there was a Show called Utopia that played with the Evil Corp angle in a Tongue in Cheek maximum Ham manner which was nice as they embraced the Trope you have issues with in such a way that it was deliberately over the top. The Conspiracy Theory stuff met with the same treatment in a So Bad it's Good way.

One of the main cast from Utopia is in Humans too.
There was a Series 2 of Utopia I think but I missed it. S1 I would reccomend though.

Another Pseudo Sci Fi was domething called Black Mirror which funnily enough was written by the earlier mentioned Charlie Brooker. Very Dark/Grim but ok I suppose. Only saw Two episodes... No Three sorry but it was unique at the time.
There is a Cruelty in his work I am not fond of but it does I grudgingly admit have a purpose in his themes as opposed to being slapped on by a Network Exec trying to be edgy.

Small doses of Charlie Brooker are Key I guess as too much is Not so Good.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Not had much sleep so pretty garbled writing on my part. Sorry.

Another reason I hated Torchwood is it obviated UNIT rather heavily. Not a Retcon persay but definately diminished and made it irrelevant.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I'm still alive smile

Steve's Parallel World (Earth62)
http://www.earth62.net/sliders.html

Re: Personal Status Updates!

The Left Wing in the UK is pretty much a dead beast but a lot of US People strangely (to me at least) think there is a strong Left here.
You hear a lot of Social Justice Crusaders trying to drown out everyone else trying to claim the Mantle of the Left but it does not fit them and switches many People off.

That's interesting. A lot of what we get comes from the media (much like what most people know about American culture), so it is a very skewed perspective. Sadly, this results in a lot of Americans thinking that people in the UK are on the extreme left, and also more civilized and classy, and look at us as unwashed peasants, so the easily manipulated amongst us try to distance themselves from their American culture. Some even claim that America has no culture, which boggles the mind... Sorry. I'm drifting toward a rant here.

But yeah, it's media manipulation. They present a picture that isn't necessarily true in an effort to sway the way people think. It happens with news reports and political issues as well. I've been carefully watching the way that news reports skew stories over the past few years, since it plays into a novel series that I've been working on. The subtle word play and the things that they don't tell you about a story can cause all sorts of chaos. And then people refuse to accept the truth when you introduce it, because they didn't see it on the news.

I could get into some of those stories, but I'm sure it's far less interesting if you haven't been buried in it for years.

I imagine that a lot of what you see about us isn't the whole truth either. The media sucks. smile

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

vortex62 wrote:

I'm still alive smile


We need a "like" button here, for the situations where I can't think of a full response, but feel like I should acknowledge people.

I acknowledge you!

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

vortex62 wrote:

I'm still alive smile

Woo hoo!

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Haha thanks DMD.

Steve's Parallel World (Earth62)
http://www.earth62.net/sliders.html

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Great to hear from you tex!

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Grizzlor wrote:

Great to hear from you tex!

Thanks Grizz I lurk alot. My site is totally closed for updates now and i got rid of that java menu crap, but it will remain up as long as I have the funds to do so. smile

Steve's Parallel World (Earth62)
http://www.earth62.net/sliders.html

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I thought I had my T100TA in perfect condition now that Google Chrome is working -- but then dust started getting inside the monitor. That's right. Dust. This 10.1-inch laptop is so badly designed that DUST GETS UNDER THE GLASS. And the warranty has expired.

So, I'm going to sell this laptop off and buy a new one. God damn it. I have to wonder if my mistake has always been to go for low-cost, low-weight laptops, and this T100TA clearly had a lot of corners cut to make its low price point.
I'm prepared to spend more money on an ultrabook, but I find myself wondering if that's necessary. I always picked out laptops with the thought of carrying them around all day. But the truth is that with a smartphone and a tablet, a laptop can stay at home and I've never gotten much work down away from home on a laptop anyway. What work I did get done could have been achieved with a Bluetooth keyboard and Google Docs on the tablet or phone.

It looks like 15.6-inch-screen machines are the way to go now that mobility is less of a concern. Gosh. I wonder if they still have DVD drives in them.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

A few years ago, I finally decided to just save some money and buy the laptop that I actually wanted, rather than what was cheapest. The cheap ones are usually outdated when you get them, and the materials aren't great. So I went to Dell's website and chose every feature. It is a 17 inch laptop that isn't easy to haul around away from home, but it is still running strong and I feel no need to get a new one. My only real issue is that the internal TV tuner stopped working for some reason. I might replace it, but I am not in a great hurry.

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

I'm kind of tempted by this $700 ultrabook, the ASUS UX305 -- but I am also tempted by the new version of the T100TAM -- a 10.1-inch 32GB netbook going for $200! Same specs as this much-loathed T100TA -- but the new one has much improved build quality! It's made of aluminium! And a 128GB microSD card can easily make up for the low-storage!

But I can't help but see what you mean when you say that buying cheap only sees you spending more money to replace the cheap and ultimately unsatisfying item you chose for its low cost.

Lifehacker says that when you are torn between two options, choose neither. Or maybe choose the cheap one and try it for 10 days and then return it if it's crap.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

The $200 laptop was a final sale product, meaning no exchanges or refunds. While it came with an excellent manufacturer's accidental damage protection plan, I decided not to get it. I recently experienced a tech horror show with my Samsung Tab S 8.4 having a loose screen. I was able to exchange it again and again until deciding it was badly designed and getting a refund to spend on something else instead. I will never buy a computer I can't return within a trial period if it happens to be badly designed and manufactured. I think I'll save up for the Ultrabook and get by on my desktop for now.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

And now, for another installment of whiny first-world problems.

I thought I'd try to make a go of it with my current hardware before buying a new laptop. Maybe see if I even really need one. My desktop is actually a 2009 laptop plugged into a monitor, keyboard and speakers. I haven't used it much for the last couple years because I was splitting my work between the tablet and mini-laptop (an 11.6 inch laptop, later replaced by the 10.1-incher that I ended up selling off). Today, I found the desktop a bit isolating and wanted to move around the apartment a bit, so I pulled the laptop loose from its makeshift dock and made it my new work machine.

And, well -- it's kind of lousy. I remember the HP DM3 being an aluminium marvel back in 2009 with a delightfully bright screen and eight hours of battery life. I guess LCD technology has improved a lot since 2009, because my crappy little 10.1 laptop had solid black levels and rich colours while this 13.3 HP DM3 laptop has washed out colours and the colour black is represented as a vague gray. The viewing angles on this thing are extremely limited. Netflix looks weird. And all the text on the screen looks so jagged and pixelated and ugly. I guess you don't notice such things until you've had better.

But that's fine! It's a work machine! As long as black text on white backgrounds stays readable, it's not a problem. Except -- my God, this machine is *noisy*. I guess in 2009, fan noise was part of the laptop landscape and when converted to a desktop, the actual laptop was under the desk and the noise was distant. But here I am, trying to write and the grinding, buzzing, noisy fan is a huge distraction. And the heat! The palmrest of this thing feels like a mini-space heater! The base of the laptop, resting on my calves/ankles, is like an electric blanket. And the spinning hard drive is so noisy! The awful T100, for all its faults, was silent; the spinning hard drive in the keyboard dock made no noise and the rest of the T100 had no moving parts and it never got hot.

The battery seems to last about 40 minutes.

I dunno. It's not great, but I am honestly asking myself if I really need better. I mean, the iPad mini screen looks great and I can use that for web browsing. I have a proper HDTV for movies and TV. I only need a laptop for typing long documents; this thing doesn't need to be a mobile multimedia machine. The T100 got on my last nerve after dust started getting under the glass and I sold it off in a fit of pique yesterday. The HP DM3 has yet to aggravate me to that degree. With a tablet and a home theatre PC in the living room, does a work machine need to any more than adequate? Dunno.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

I wondered if a low-contrast, low-colour, low-resolution screen was really an impediment to getting work done. The answer is, apparently, yes. I gave up and put the laptop back in its desktop dock and then switched to my iPad with a stand and Bluetooth keyboard.

The screen definitely encouraged me to produce more pages, but I found it really slow -- keystrokes would be missed or repeated, the keyboard would periodically lose touch with the tablet and I would get really annoyed. Then I wondered if a better Bluetooth keyboard would work better as I noticed the same keys (G, comma, B, E) kept getting needed repeated keystrokes to make it to the screen.

I bought a more expensive Bluetooth keyboard and the results are good. The multitasking is a little cumbersome and I can't compare two files side by side on the tablet, but I can use my phone. I'm finding that I'm producing a lot of pages on the tablet but go back to the desktop to do all the formatting. That's fine.

So. I guess this is my new laptop!

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Met a Girl Yesterday who literally took my breath away and made my heart jump.
Never been "In Love" before... Is this what it is like?

I met her again tonight and I'm ridiculously happy and can't seem to stop thinking about her.
I don't even usually find Blondes attractive. So weird!

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Congrats man!  Hope it works out for you!

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Very cool. Congrats!

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80 (edited by Slider_Quinn21 2015-08-29 14:16:28)

Re: Personal Status Updates!

So I saw American Ultra today.  Max Landis wrote it (and as I've said before, I'm a fan of his).  It was a fun movie - characters seemed real and 3-dimensional, there was action and heart, and it was just a fun ride.  Had the feel of another Eisenberg movie - Zombieland - and I think it *should* have that same level of success.  But it hasn't - there were five people in the theater I saw it in (granted, it was 1pm on a Saturday).  Landis went on a rant saying that the movie was beat by a few movies, all of which were sequels or remakes.  Claims that it's this kind of stuff that makes Hollywood pump out more unoriginal films.  Went on another rant the other day about the dangers of sites like Rotten Tomatoes.  American Ultra is currently at 47% there.

Anyone seen it?  If not, were you interested?  A lot of times, issues where good movies get bad results are due to marketing.  But I feel like the movie was marketed pretty well - I thought it would be a bit more druggie but it wasn't.  They're stoners but it's not necessarily their entire characters.  The whole cast is good and recognizable.

I thought it was well done, all around.  If it seems like your kind of thing, go support it.  I'm sure every dollar helps.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Gosh. I think this is the first time we've had a romance post. Tell us how it's going!

Re: Personal Status Updates!

ireactions wrote:

Gosh. I think this is the first time we've had a romance post. Tell us how it's going!

Well that's depressing.



About American Ultra, I saw commercials, but it didn't look very original or exciting to me. I don't know if that is bad marketing or what. It just looked like a movie that I've seen before.
I don't think that Landis is the guy who should be bashing remakes and sequels, since he has shown great enthusiasm for those movies. In general, I hate those types of rants. Remakes and sequels are as old as the performing arts. They have never stopped people from creating great original work, and they aren't stopping it now. If a movie fails, the blame isn't on the movies that didn't fail. It is on the writing, or the directing, or the marketing... If I don't want to see their movie, it isn't because of another movie that came out two months earlier.

Maybe it's time to have filmmakers cut together a trailer for their films, so they can pitch us the actual story that the marketing department usually doesn't care about. At the very least, post these creator trailers online.

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

Well, I mean there have been examples of movies that are clearly not what the trailer said they were.  Click looked like a dumb Adam Sandler movie about a guy who gets a magic remote and does a bunch of sophomoric stuff.  What it actually ended up being was a Capra-esque film about a guy dealing with his own mortality.

American Ultra was painted as a stoner who is a CIA asset.  It's got action and comedy.  And that's basically what it was.  But it was also fun in a way that only Jurassic World was really able to capture.  It wasn't crazy original, but it was apparently based on a real-life CIA abandoned project so that was kinda cool.  Something like Bourne meets Half Baked.

Landis wrote a Frankenstein movie that's coming out soon.  He's doing a remake for television.  He's writing a Superman comic and pitched for a Fantastic Four movie.  I don't necessarily think his comments were hypocritical, but he's had criticisms about the way movies are sold in general.  And I think his concern is that it'll be harder for original ideas to get created if original ideas aren't profitable. I don't think he wants sequels/remakes to go away - just that he doesn't want original ideas to go away.

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The studios will always want the biggest title that they can get, with the most profit that they can get. They are businesses that need to make money, and for every one of these soulless remakes that makes a billion dollars profit, they can afford to lose money on ten original ideas that won't.

The world of movie making is separating. You no longer need ten million dollars and studio backing in order to produce a good movie. All you need is a good DSLR, some lenses, some lights, some good audio equipment and some talent, and your movie could look and sound like a solid studio-produced "art" film. I see a lot of people who are upset about the state of movies today, but the truth is that more movies are being made today, and more movies are being made by true artists today, than ever before. The people who are concerned with the state of the industry are simply looking at the wrong industry.

On another note, I just don't get the appeal of stoner movies. I guess the point is that you usually need to be high in order to really appreciate them, so I wouldn't. But... how do they get money to produce those movies? I tried watching "Wet Hot American Summer" and wound up turning it off (which I don't do often) because it was complete nonsense. Real comedy still requires intelligence and skill, so this definitely wasn't that.

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

Well that's the other thing that might've hurt it.  The main character is a stoner, but it's not really the point of the movie.  It's more of a "this guy is a stoner who works at a convenience store - how can he be Jason Bourne" more than anything.  He's high a lot and talks about getting high when he's trying to understand what's going on, but the movie moves beyond it at some point.  It isn't played for laughs like in Harold and Kumar, and after the movie gets going, you see that it's more medication than anything else.

Because I'm the same way.  I don't do drugs and don't really think they're all that funny.

And I guess that's an issue with marketing it - the stoner aspect is there, but it's not the whole story.

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I wonder what the trailer for the movie would look like if it had been made by the writer or director. All of the imagery for the film's promotion revolves around smoke. If that wasn't at the center of the film, the marketing definitely killed the movie.

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

Yeah, I mean I don't really remember any Harold/Kumar-type jokes.  That definitely couldn't contributed to the downfall if people were expecting that.

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I'm probably not going to see AMERICAN ULTRA in theatres. Nothing against the movie -- I just don't really go out to the cinema anymore. With Netflix and Amazon Prime and Google Play and iTunes, I just don't really feel that going out to the movies is a great use of time or money. I mean, paying $14 - $20 to watch one movie? And adjusting my schedule to see the movie instead of playing the movie for myself when I'm good and ready to see it?

I meant to see ANT MAN and TERMINATOR GENISYS and FANTASTIC FOUR and INSIDE OUT and INSURGENT and that recent HUNGER GAMES movie -- but I just never got around to it. When I was in the mood to see any of them, it wasn't playing and it seemed silly to go down to the theatre when I could watch anything else on my TV or computer or tablet. Or read my Kindle books.

Sometimes, however, Laurie wants to go out to a movie. We saw AGE OF ULTRON together, but she protested when I threw pennies at people who were texting.

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Yeah, I just like Landis and wanted to support his movie.  He had this ramble the other day about Nightwing that I really liked.  Not so much about the rambling itself but just the happiness in his face as he talks about it.  He LOVES this stuff.  LOVES story.  LOVES these characters.  They're real to him, and he's fascinated.  Something about that is really cool in a childlike innocence way.

(Also I love Nightwing.  In my opinion, he's the only comic book character who's ever been allowed to grow for some reason, and that's awesome to me).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCBMGKc78qI

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Might be seeing her again today.
She is Flat (Apartment) hunting so been unable touch base til now.
She is Really Tall! She sits down and her knees are practically by her chin, Average Chairs just fail, which makes me smile and gets me amused yet irritated looks from her.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Just an update on SLIDERS REBORN -- I got stuck when I hit some problems with the ending. Very simply -- I neglected to write a full beat sheet with a brief summary of each scene. Instead, I just wrote a general overview without too much detail.

Converting the general outline was pretty effective for writing Part 1. With Part 2, I hit some serious plot issues that only became apparent when writing the individual scenes. And I got lost.

A couple weeks ago, I was angsting about the situation with Matt and from our discussions emerged a solution. I proceeded to rewrite the ending in the form of a scene-by-scene outline and the solution proved effective, but it took the whole weekend. I set aside time this past weekend, intending to finish the script. What I found was that I couldn't finish it yet -- the ending works, but the preceding scenes no longer match the ending. So I had to go back and convert the written-script into a scene-by-scene outline, this time with the correct clues and exposition that set up the ending.

In retrospect, this is the sort of thing that happens when someone who has not written many screenplays and never taken a screenwriting class attempts something complicated involving a mystery with a revelation. I neglected to convert my general overview to a scene-by-scene outline. This wasn't a problem for Part 1, which was mostly conversations, but it was a problem with Part 2, where the clues and setup were not sufficiently seeded and the payoff didn't make sense -- which I would have spotted if I'd written a proper beat sheet.

Anyway. I've got a proper beat sheet now and I think I will have it done within this week. I just don't know if Nigel will have time to review the script in time for the deadline. I've learned my lesson -- I'm going to do a proper beat sheet for Part 3 as well.

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In other news, I've discovered a really great web browser -- Pale Moon. It's a variant on Firefox. I really like Firefox for all the great extensions and the way you can customize it. But Firefox has become a bloated mess of a browser. And even on i7 processors and 8GB of RAM, it's prone to delayed starts and regular freezing up compared to Chrome's instantaneous response. I recently discovered Pale Moon, which is a build of Firefox that's extremely stripped down and lightweight. It has all the features of Firefox, but none of the absurd demands on the CPU and processor. The main subtraction is compatibility with older-generation processors and operating systems. I've been settling for Chrome because Chrome is fast, but I think I might switch to Pale Moon.

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What you went through is part of the reason why I wanted to write my entire six book series in its entirety before releasing the first book. I would hate to have three books published before realizing that I forgot to set up a crucial plot point. It's an editing nightmare, but still the best way to go about it, I think.

The moments of crisis happen to all writers. At least you found a way out of it. Congrats on that.

I'm not a big fan of anything Mozilla related these days. I'm not sure that I could bring myself to use any variant of their browser.


The new TV season starts tonight! Gotham and Minority Report. Should be interesting. I've been surviving on a diet of Sons of Anarchy and Longmire on Netflix, and neither one of them is particularly great. It'll be nice to get some normal TV back.

Life is finally starting to settle down a bit. I haven't been posting much because things have been so crazy, but aside from some filming days coming up, I should be planted at the computer for a while. I'm sure that I'll be trying to avoid work most of the time, so I might be posting more. smile

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Re: Personal Status Updates!

I have been leaving writing for the weekend. I'm tired after work and just want to curl up with my comic books. But I really have to get going on REBORN. I tried to write today, but I was quite weary -- so I just put myself on autopilot and wrote about 1/5 of the Quinn and Arturo scenes. I mean, they practically write themselves. Every two lines, however, I have to hit Wikipedia to look at the pages on quantum mechanics. I think Informant suggested doing this once; focusing on the scenes that were the most fun to write and doing the rest later.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

It's a method that works better sometimes than others. I think that the scenes that we have playing over and over again in our heads are the landmarks (usually, it's the intro, some fun middle stuff and then the end) so we just have to fill out the stuff that links all of those moments together and makes sense of the mess. Writing them first can help lock things in place, but for me it's difficult to work that way a lot of the time. If I write all of the scenes that my brain is going nuts over, I'm not sure how motivated I will be to write the rest. So writing scenes in order for me makes those big scenes like a reward for my work. smile

It's nuts. Writing is nuts. Nothing works the same way twice. It can be maddening. Good luck!

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

What's your beef with Firefox?

My issue is simply that it's gotten bloated and slow -- but I still like it in theory. And with all the extraneous features stripped out.

I have now completed 1/4 of the Quinn-Arturo scenes.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

My thing with Firefox is purely political. I don't like how they do business, so I won't do business with them. Probably nothing that most people would care about. smile

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Been watching "The Last Man on Earth" but for some reason the last 2 episodes of S1 were not on this week.

I like it.... But in a guilty pleasure kind of way.

Only other thing I'm watching is Californication. Not seen it before so curious if it lives up to the hype.

"It's only a matter of time. Were I in your shoes, I would spend my last earthly hours enjoying the world. Of course, if you wish, you can spend them fighting for a lost cause.... But you know that you've lost." -Kane-

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Informant wrote:

My thing with Firefox is purely political. I don't like how they do business, so I won't do business with them. Probably nothing that most people would care about. smile

I do.  Could you tell me more?

Re: Personal Status Updates!

Basically, there was a CEO that was run out of the company based on the fact that he opposed gay marriage on his own time. Huge stink and he "resigned" because of it. I didn't like the way the whole thing went down, so I decided to drop that company from any of my future downloads... which wasn't hard because most of their stuff sucks anyway.

Please be informed that the political, scientific, sociological, economic and legal views expressed in Informant's posts and social media accounts do not reflect any consensus of Sliders.tv.