What Would Thrawn Do?

What Would Thrawn Do?: Thoughts on Rogue One.

Note this is before I’ve seen the movie: While I`m unlikely to completely boycott the movie I did not go out of my way to see The Force Awakens and I will not go out of my way to see Rogue One.

The truth is I’m a little torn over what to think about The new Star Wars movie Rogue One, On one hand the core concept strikes me as a movie that should be enjoyable. From what I can tell working miltary sci-fi and heist story elements into the Star Wars universe and then presenting everything from an eyewitness point of view is a very intriguing prospect and one I’m actually in favor of.

Rogue One is a movie that should have been nigh impossible to fuck up.

Of course I fully expect Hollywood to fuck it up.

I’ll allow Razorfist to explain more.

Well I’m not quite so negative as our Leatherclad Prophet of Doom my expectations for this movie are low to apathetic. The decision to completely ditch the entire Expended Universe felt like a stab in the back to me… and I hadn’t bought a Star Wars book since… let me think… it was one of the Rogue Squadron books (checks book shelf) Book Eight: Isard’s Revenge by Michael A. Stackpole. Copyright 1999.

1999! That can’t be right? (probably bought the book around 2004)

Okay so maybe Star Wars has been shit for a very long time. Arguably things started going downhill ever since Boba Fett died like a bitch. I still had a lot of fun with the original movies and the very best of EU. Sure eventually my fandom got Suncrusher-ed out of existence and I had to move on to other forms of sci-fi (David Weber’s Honor Harrington Series for example;) but Star Wars was a fun place to start.

Podcaster Chris Bechtloff https://gab.ai/TheBechtloff refers to Star Wars as Science Fiction for basic bitches but that’s fine the basic bitches have to start somewhere… mind you it does a suspicious when people stay at the basic bitch level. (Oddly the people who are hyping this movie like Dane Cook and Wil Wheaton are the exact same people who were shilling for the abomination that was 2016 Ghostbusters)

So Star Wars acts as sort of a gateway to science fiction. An easy pathway from popular culture to basic Sci-fi concepts and themes. So it is no surprise that a such a gate would attract gatekeepers.

So what will become of Pink Disney SOCJUS Star Wars? There is an awful lot of ruin in a nation and even more in a beloved franchise. Will Rogue One make a profit? Well it had better since it’s the single most important and most hyped movie of 2016. Will it leave a lasting cultural legacy? Probably not.

Let’s start with the obvious. A modern Hollywood Tentpole movie is at minimum a $300 Million project with a 2-4 year production cycle. It is also a tremendous concentration of artistic and technical talent. It takes a great deal of effort to ruin a movie. Therefore it is of the utmost importance that every single screen writer be a talentless Social Justice Warrior hack who is willing to work for five grand and a bag of dope and has absolutely no knowledge of the source material, other works in the genre or even the vaguest idea how to tell a story. Oh yeah… and let’s give these clowns three weeks to write the final draft before we start filming.

Which leads to spectacles like this…

http://www.brianniemeier.com/2016/11/star-wars-rogue-one-facade-cracks.html

This is a great deal of Hollywood’s problems and there’s no real solution in sight. Movies consist of three aspects: The visuals (which are the most important) the sound and music (emotional manipulation) and the story telling. Hollywood has effectively mastered the first two aspects of the movie making art but due to increased social justice convergence are completely losing the third.

The first thing to go in an artist upon going full SJW is the sense of creativity, followed by the ability to project or understand any form of nuance. This leads to a shallowness or hollowness in their newer projects and to almost a bland echoing copy of other works. All originality has been drained from the art… just as all humanity has been drained from their soul.

The Force Awakens is almost a perfect example of this. Beautiful visuals, excellent use of music a masterpiece at first glance only to fall apart under further examination.

You enjoy the movie when you first see it. It’s only when you get home and start to think about it do you see its flaws. The shallow characters, the paint by numbers plot, the mindnumbing ridiculousness of the political situation and worse of all the callous way the hard won victory of Endor (and of the original trilogy) is rendered completely meaningless. All those dead Bothans and Ewoks for absolutely nothing.

The Force Awakens was an average popcorn action movie but as a Star Wars movie it was absolutely shit.

And yes Rey is a Mary Sue.

http://bradfordcwalker.blogspot.ca/2015/12/jedi-princess-rey-is-terribly-written.html

Tempted to do a breakdown of the characters of TFA and how they were either badly written or horribly misused but I’ve only bothered to watch the movie once and I really would have to watch it a second time in order to do a such a breakdown justice and quite frankly I don’t give that much of a shit.

Maybe I sound bitter? Well no shit Sherlock! The point is pretty much every old school Star Wars fan feels that they could have written a better Episode Seven while high on bath salts and stranded on a desert island, fending off giant enemy crabs with a broken canoe paddle.

The SOCJUS take over of Star Wars is slowly eating away at what should be an invincible brand of ever flowing money. The shiny, shiny X-wings are nice but the core story telling is vapid and the characters simply aren’t memorable or believable.

It was just barely believable that Luke a talented bush pilot could fly an X-wing in the first Deathstar battle. Sure he must have had hundreds if not thousands of flight hours and it was explained in the novels that the T-16 used the same control scheme as the X-wing fighter (allowing civilian pilots like Luke to quickly adapt.) So yes we believed that Luke the farm boy could fly a state of the art starfighter.

But Magic Space Princess Rey going from half starved scavenger to Jedi Knight in the course of a single movie? Nope sorry that illusion breaks down very quickly.

Even this problem could have been handled quite easily if Rey had been allowed time to develop as a character. How? Well keeping her as the tech genius rogue and using her in that support role would have make a great deal more sense. We discover that she’s force sensitive but she doesn’t immediately gain Jedi abilities. So Rey has to solve her problems using her wits and technical knowledge. This is where a competent Finn could have been great. He’s a fully trained commando with a good knowledge of the (Evil Bad Men) and their inner workings. So you have them sneak around inside the Enemy Fortress World (Not a Deathstar) sabotaging equipment and trying to find critical information.

They barely escape with the critical information and this sets the stage for the second movie. Where Rey slowly becomes more confident and capable. By the third movie she’s a full Jedi Knight and the focus shifts to her with Finn and Poe dropping back into a supporting role.

But nope Disney wanted their magic space princess NOW and the SJW writers wanted a strong empowered woman. So we get a hollow shell of a movie.

I expect Rogue One to be more of the same.

Maybe I’ll be wrong but hey I’m just some guy on the internet.

I’ll leave you with this.

Grand Admiral Thrawn studied his enemies artwork in order in order to devise tactics to use against them. What would he think of the new Star Wars? What does it tell us about our enemy?

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You know come to think of it Thrawn was a practical pragmatic Alt-Right leader. We can all learn from his example.

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What Would Thrawn Do?

Epic Fantasy Dwarf Music

It seems that there is something even dorkier and more awesome than Viking Metal.

I sunk a lot of time into Dwarf Fortress at one point. The late 2d versions and the earliest 3d ones so say three or four years back. In contrast most of my failed fantasy writing has been based on elves or elf-like creatures. So after a great deal of thought I’ve come to a few conclusions.

First while elves require a great deal of flavor to be anything other than pointy-eared tree-hugging faggots… even generic fantasy dwarves are freaking awesome!

aroundelves

Secondly in a strange analogy that is worthy of exploring further it strikes me that (for good or ill) elves are liberals and dwarves are conservatives. While fantasy races are supposed to exaggerate aspects of the human condition it just seems odd to me that you can draw such a clear modern zeitgeist parallel to the most generic of western fantasy races; which became more or less standardised decades ago..

And yes pointed-eared liberals are just as religious as stout, bearded conservatives they just aren’t always as selective or wise about their choice of deity.

Anyway on to the music…

Children of the Smith:

I got almost pathetically excited by this video when it first came out and let me start by pointing out that this may be in effect one of the best videogame commercials ever made. This song takes the form of a religious hymn sung by dwarves in order to steel themselves to face a crisis. Note the standard dwarvey (and conservative) themes. Appeal to family, tradition, brotherhood patriotism and tenacity in the face of the Enemy.

The contrasting blend of classical music and metal doesn’t hurt either.

Diggy Diggy Hole by Yogscast

Yeah I don’t like anything else Yogscast has ever done but no one can deny that this is what being a dwarf is all about. Dwarves are hardcore by definition.

Wooden Pints by Korpikaani

I’ve posted this one before but technically it’s about dwarves so it counts, even if the tale is sung by a filthy surface dweller. If you’re ever feeling down just look at this video made a decade ago and then look at where the band is now.

Over the Misty Mountains.

An absolutely beautiful version, filled with haunting sadness and yet proud determination.

 

Huh? What that? Still not enough dwarvey goodness for you? Well don’t worry because here’s…

 

One Hour of EPIC DWARF MUSIC!!!

Amazing work and they’re two very productive artists so there’s plenty of content to dig through.

Epic Fantasy Dwarf Music

Checking In

Yeah well so much for my ‘social media break.’ I think I made it two and half days before a David Seaman video and #PizzaGate drag me back into online discourse (mostly of words you don’t say in front of your mother.)

poweredbypizza.jpg

You know Timmy in hindsight this DOES look a little suspicious.

There’s not really that much I can say on the subject other than yes PizzaGate is real. The details are still very fuzzy but of the core of the whole scandal does appear to be very valid. Worse of all it just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Everyone knows there is corruption and perversion in the world and that the two go hand in hand but how does it all go? A great deal further than we even suspected it seems.

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See Timmy I told you. NEVER CALL ANYTHING A CONSPIRACY THEORY EVER AGAIN!!!

Which brings us this very creepy screenshot which answers the question “how would a child pornography ring operate?” It seems the answer is exact what 4chan has been saying all this time.

justlike4chansaid

But enough about that. I’m pretty damn angry about PizzaGate (I guess that proves I do have  soul after all) but it’s not really something I can be focusing on. Besides nothing of note will be actually be done until Trump takes office and declares open season on all the gators in the Swamp. A month ago I was joking about The Great Pedo Hunt of 2017… now it looks like it might actually happen.

Anyway I think the point of this ramble is that I’ve been focusing too much on negative things and I really do need to get out of my deep blue funk, cheer the fuck up and get a few things done.

 

So in a complete change of topic here’s something I wrote on a whim a couple nights ago.

There was a thin nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere on Manchukuo but it wasn’t enough to support human life. Well you’d last five or six minutes (they’d done tests with convicts at one point.) A class two envirosuit however could pull enough oxygen out of that atmosphere just fast enough to keep you going as long as the wearer wasn’t doing anything strenuous at least until the batteries wore out. The problem of course was that pretty much the only reason anybody when outside on this planet was to do construction work. This meant that there had to be somebody watching the battery power and oxygen reserves of every single worker on the crew since the automated systems that were supposed to the job weren’t completely reliable or trusted by the men. One set of good old fashioned mark one eyeballs watching everybody’s back bought a lot of peace of mind.

“It might be nothing but I think fourteen has sprung a leak,” the female technician announced over the comm circuit.

“It’s nothing Boss, I think I can keep going.” The worker in question replied.

Mike Monsen, cursed under his breath as he pulled up fourteen’s vital signs, at least the atmosphere wasn’t poisonous on this planet. “Dan, get back to the tent and check your seals. Don’t fuck around with shit like this.”

“You sure? My air supply’s fine. If there’s a leak it’s just in the outer suit.”

“Get back to the fucking tent and check your seals!” Monsen bellowed a little more harshly then he intended. “Trust an old space dog on this. If one part of your suit is failing the rest might not be far behind. Do not fuck around with your spacesuits.”

“We need new suits, Boss.” Another worker chimed in.

“Damn it I know,” Mike cursed. With so much emergency construction going on Manchukuo Authority was wearing out it’s supply of class twos and no one was sure when Supply would get a hold of replacements. Soon the way things were going the Governor would have to either halt construction on the planned hydroponic farm complexes or work would have to continue in less capable class one suits. So far Monsen hadn’t lost a worker, even a green conscript but other teams had. In class ones not only would be slowed down by the need to use oxygen tanks but the accident risk would be greatly increased. Class twos provided a margin of safely here that made using mostly pressganged colonists and unemployed merchant sailors at least viable. Using those same unskilled workers without that safety margin would be a disaster.

Pretty meh in my opinion. I’ll probably completely drop the idea but it’s set in the same universe as the novel I’m intending to write.

The idea I had here was to create a set up where the Governor of Manchukuo has a interesting problem in that his government and crony capitalist friends needs a large amount of an oddly specific piece of equipment in order to complete his grandiose ’emergency construction’ plans. In turn this creates an opportunity for a band of rag tag entrepreneurial misfits since the Governor is most happy to pay for said equipment in platinum and doesn’t really care whether or not proper customs laws or trading with the enemy acts are being obeyed in this specific instance. After all a man like him can’t really afford to lose face.

Anyway it was a whim. Maybe I’ll keep going or maybe I’ll actually work on the damned novel I’ve been planning for a year now.

spacemericafuckyeah.jpg

— Wolfman out. Stay frosty Space Cowboys.

Checking In