Archive for the 1990’s Category

Nerdy Monday 24: 2nd and Charles

Posted in 1980's, 1990's, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Crash Bandicoot, N64, Nerdy Monday, NES, Playstation, PS2, PS3, Retro, T.V. shows, Video Game, XBox, XBox 360 with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 18, 2014 by Divide By Zero

I am finally going to be writing more regularly.  I had a lot of stuff gonig on these past few months (years, really), and I thank you to everyone who has visited my site during the hiatus.

I wanted to come back on a Nerdy Monday, because that (in all honesty) was my favorite post to write each week.  Since the last time I posted a Nerdy Monday article, I’ve moved.  Therefore the locality of the blog articles to be written are going to pertain mostly to Northern Virginia/Washington D.C.  For some articles, like the top 10 lists, locality won’t matter.  However, for this re-introduction special to Nerdy Monday XXIV, I’m going to be talking about Heaven on Earth.  Or simply by its name: 2nd & Charles.  Particularly the one in my home town of Woodbridge, VA.  How can you not love a place that puts this up on its facebook page:

It might be photoshopped, but this is ALWAYS what I see pulling into the parking lot.

It might be photoshopped, but this is ALWAYS what I see pulling into the parking lot.

For those of you who have never heard of a “2NC”, allow me to explain;  It’s a sort of 2nd hand bookstore, music store, game stop (more like a now defunked Funcoland), toy store, and comic book store all rolled into one.  Personally, I go there for the video games.  Like a moth to a flame.  Because they buy back older books, vinyls, comic books, and everything else, they have a lot of old video games.  I’m talking about original Gameboy, all the original Nintendo, Sega Master System, Genesis, Game Gear, Game Cube, etcetera, all the way up through the X-BONE & the PS4.  What’s not to love?!  I’ve told my fiancee that I could spend hundreds of hours, and thousands of dollars there, and it’s true.  I have to give myself a limit on how much I am going to spend before we even leave to go there, and I almost never stay below budget.

If you haven’t liked them on facebook yet, do it!  If you haven’t subscribed to their e-mail list, you’re missing out.  On facebook, they put up all sorts of pictures of new items they bought back, or deals they have on clearance items, it’s wonderful.  When I have nothing to do, while I’m out running errands with my family (that don’t directly involve me or require my help) I get dropped off there and 3 hours goes by in the blink of an eye.  Also on facebook, you’ll receive special promotions they have at the buyback counter (another one of my favorite departments).  The most recent one I participated in was:

LAST DAY to receive DOUBLE CREDIT when you trade in your used#videogame #consoles, #games, and #accessories! Drop by before 7pm and SCORE BIG with buyback today!
#retro #pikachu #snes #nes #n64 #nintendo #gamecube #xbox #xboxone#xbox360 #playstation #PS4 #PS3 #ps2 #sony #atari #ds #dsi#smashbrothers #destiny #nostalgia #woodbridge #virginia #nova
Photo: LAST DAY to receive DOUBLE CREDIT when you trade in your used #videogame #consoles, #games, and #accessories! Drop by before 7pm and SCORE BIG with buyback today!
#retro #pikachu #snes #nes #n64 #nintendo #gamecube #xbox #xboxone #xbox360 #playstation #PS4 #PS3 #ps2 #sony #atari #ds #dsi #smashbrothers #destiny #nostalgia #woodbridge #virginia #nova
 [Author: excerpt from 2NC’s facebook page]
Yes, DOUBLE credit for any old video games and consoles.
If you know me personally, AT ALL, you know that I’ve amassed quite a vintage video game collection.  Nothing crazy, or youtube worthy, but nobody needs 6 Sega Genesis consoles, all of the same model.  Even worse, I felt I didn’t need more than 2 PS1’s seeing as how my PS2’s and PS3 play PS1 games.  Also, all the duplicate copies of games I have had to go.  Opportunities like this don’t happen very often, so for most people, it’s a way to streamline your ’80’s & ’90’s arcade, as well as build up some store credit at a great place like 2NC.  What I want to do with my collection (and your plan for yours may be different) is to get rid of all of my cheaper games, and focus on getting the good games that everyone remembers.  OddWorld: Abe’s Exodus, Contra, Commando, Final Fantasy VII, Anything Crash Bandicoot.  I know I’ll never have a collection like my mentor, The Angry Video Game Nerd’s, but I’d like my collection to make people a LITTLE envious!
This place seriously has something for everyone.  Autographed & classic books, vinyl records and CDs out the ying-yang, every Wednesday is New Comic Book Day, movies and TV shows on DVD, toys, collectibles, video games, and a ton more.  I spent close to 100 dollars one time on stuff I didn’t even know I needed!  A tetris Ice cube tray, space invaders alarm clock, video game cases, DVDs I wanted in my library for $2.50 a piece, a poster that went perfectly in my living room (before my fiancee told me to move it).  Batman stuff, comic books, t-shirts, and a joker thumb drive are on my “To Get” list as well.  I know they don’t need any advertising from me, and I’m not getting paid by anyone to write this article, I just genuinely love 2nd & Charles.  So, like I said, if you haven’t checked it out, check it out, like them on facebook and join their mailing list.  When they buy back things, you can get cash too (though not as much as if you got store credit), so it’d be nice for someone who wants to find a good home for the junk they don’t use.
I’m probably going to be writing about 2nd & Charles for a couple of more Nerdy Monday spots, so I’ll keep you up to date on what’s going on there.  It’s not lazy using the same topic or subject, there’s just way too much at that store to put in one blog article.  Until then!
Say whaaaaat?

Say whaaaaat?

 

Holla!

Holla!

Nerdgasm.

Nerdgasm.

Whoa!

Whoa!

See you at 2ND & Charles!

 

*All images obtained using “2NC Woodbridge” Facebook Page.  Link to Cinemassacre used without permission*

My Tribute to Sony’s wonderful Playstation 2.

Posted in 1990's, 2000's, Dreamcast (Long Live the...!), N64, PS2, PS3, Sony, Video Game with tags , on February 21, 2013 by Divide By Zero

What can I say about the Sony Playstation 2 (PS2)?  In my mind it’s the one of the greatest systems out there.  It had almost a 13 year run, and was sadly discontinued on January 7th of this year.  You can’t really say anything bad about a console that grew to the age of most 8th graders in a world where technology becomes obsolete in [right around] 6 months.

Although I do think it’s funny that all of the other discontinuation articles or blogs I’ve read say something to the affect of: “So long PS2!  Sony’s most popular console is officially off the market.”  Really?  Of course it’s the most popular console; it’s only been out for 13 years.  Before that was the Playstation 1 (PS1).  That wasn’t a terrible console, but it was up against some heavy competition from the two titans of the industry at the time.

Released in late 1995, the PS1 hit the scene.  Immediately it was in competition with the Super Nintendo until 1996, (when the Nintendo 64 came out) and the Sega Genesis.  A lot of parents were weary about buying their kids a PS1 for the same reason why they were skeptical about the original XBOX when it first came out.  It was a produced by a “new” company, with no established credibility in the video game industry.  I’m sure next to no one knew this back in 1995/96, but the only other console that Sony had ever produced was a CD based model actually financed by Nintendo.  It was a flop for a lot of reasons.  But more power to the people at Sony for taking what they learned from Nintendo and venturing out on their own to become one of Nintendo’s biggest competitors.  Who would have ever thought that would happen?

Anyways, back to the guts of what I was saying… Being right about 10 years old at the time, me and most of my friends had either a Genesis, or a SNES.  I didn’t get a PS1 until a few years later in 1999, around the same time the Sega Dreamcast came out.  I remember that Christmas!  I was actually more of a Sega fan during my youth, and needless to say, wanted a Dreamcast more than anything else in the world.  Looking back on it now, how could anyone NOT pick the Dreamcast over other systems?  Do you remember the commercials?

I guess I was more of a visually influenced person.  Or maybe I was just showing loyalty to the company that gave me my awesome Genesis.  Or maybe I was just a dumb kid.  Who knows?  But I was sucked in by the commercials, the posters that came in magazines or in the mail, and the displays they had in the stores.  What about the boxes the consoles came in?  Remember the boxes?  Give me a little color, please:

Nice and colorful.  Something kids would want, right?

Nice and colorful. Something kids would want, right?

Wrong.  Everyone took the "ninja-box" for granted.  Or a lot of us did.  Ok, maybe it was just me.

Wrong. Everyone took the “ninja-box” for granted. Or a lot of us did. Ok, maybe it was just me.

In either case, the PS2 ultimately won without even breaking a sweat.  The Dreamcast’s lifespan lasted a measly few years.  About 2 or 3.  I’m not even going to look it up—that’s how short it was.  While the PS2 continued its reign for that PLUS a decade.  And it’s still a console that begs to be played.  I still have mine sitting right next to my PS3, and honestly, lately, it’s been getting more use than the PS3.

Also, according to wikipedia and a few other articles, Sony has stated that there are 10,828 titles available for the PS2.  That is an enormous number, considering it took the entire lifespan of the NES to amass around 900 titles in its library.  But what else can you expect from the PS2, which is a system that brought about the success of companies like Rockstar Games and EA (Sports division) almost single-handedly.  It also made popular the Dance Dance Revolution and Guitar Hero franchises.  To this day, I can’t go to a family gathering without there being a Guitar Hero competition, and I dare you to walk into an arcade –any good, respectable arcade– without there being at least 2 DDR platforms.

All that parental fear of Sony went away with the release of the PS2.  I remember fondly when it came out.  Five days before Halloween in the year 2000.  The world was still talking about Y2K and people were still exclaiming about how “We (as a society) overcame the biggest could-be technological poop-storm in the world!” –To date, anyway.  Within 24 hours of the PS2’s release in Japan, it sold a million units.  It was the main reason why the Dreamcast’s release date was delayed 2 or 3 times (15 year old me got an ulcer every time I heard the date got pushed back).  AND it caused Nintendo to completely tear down and rewrite their policy considering 3rd party software developers.  Nintendo, pre-PS2, wanted to be the only company making software for its consoles, with a few exceptions.  Post-PS2 Nintendo actually encouraged 3rd party development and expanded its horizon farther than what it thought was possible.

For me, that was the turning point.  After the PS2 made itself known and told the world it wasn’t going anywhere; that was the point where Nintendo was dethroned as ruler of the world.  Remember those days?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P6NhfRFSaFo

Yes, in those days, Nintendo controlled everything!

I could go on and on about the PS2.  I’m sad it’s gone, it had a good run.  Sony implemented a lot of innovations on the PS2 over the years (the games, the console itself, the controllers, networking capability) that it’s still using and improving on.  Look at a Dualshock 2 and a Dualshock 3 controller and tell me what the differences are.  OK, one is wireless, you got me.  Other than that?

In closing, thank you Sony for the Playstation 2.  It had a great run, and I look forward to playing it for years to come (plus now is the time to hit up the flea markets, yardsales, ebay, whatever because the price has gone way down on everything!).  Rest in Peace PS2.

I better cut it here before I keep, uh… whatever the writing equivalent of “rambling” is.  I just wanted to use this as an opportunity to let my fans and readers know that I am back from hiatus, and will be continuing to add to this site as often as I can.  Thank you for coming back to my blog, and I hope to have a lot of more good stuff out for you in the coming weeks.  Comment, share, subscribe, whatever… just keep reading!

–The Jester.

*All images were found by using Google Image Search and are property of their respective owners.*

*All videos were obtained through YouTube search and are property of their respective owners.*

Nerdy Monday 23: A Tribute to the Sega flops.

Posted in 1990's, Cinemassacre/James Rolfe, Dreamcast (Long Live the...!), Nerdy Monday, Retro, Video Game on April 12, 2011 by Divide By Zero

There are some video game systems sought after by collectors now for being huge failures.  There are many, but I’m going to focus on the 3 that I’ve had the most contact with.  So let’s get right down to it with…

The Sega Saturn:

Flop.

This system made its debut back in 1995, and was discontinued 3 short, disappointing years later.  It was hugely popular in Japan, but never reached anything substantial in America because of the debut of the Sony Playstation, and one of my personal all time favorites, the Nintendo 64.  It came out as a 32-bit system, which was pretty cool at the time, I guess, but it took too long to develop, and Nintendo’s N64 was released in 1996 with DOUBLE THE BITS! Therefore twice the graphics.  I mean, the Sony Playstation was released a year before the Saturn as a 32-bit system and somehow that even looked a lot better on screen.  not to mention the controls were more fluid, and the games were a lot more enjoyable.  Speaking of controls…

What the hell is this?!

I bought my Saturn on eBay for $3.24 with $3.00 shipping.  It came with all the hook-ups, a controller, and a game.  And I still believe to this day I got ripped off.  The games are shoddy at best, and it just makes me want to play something that at least has some semblance of a video game.

Rating: -3 Stars.  Horrible.

The Sega 32x:


How do you turn a 16-bit system into a 32-bit system?  You build an add on for it that makes no sense whatsoever!  The 32x plugs into the top of a Sega Genesis as if it were a game.  Then you have to run a special cable from the back of the Genesis to the back of the 32x.  THEN you have to run an a/v cable from the 32x to the TV, and STILL the 32x has it’s own ac adapter that has to be plugged into the wall.  The Genesis also has to be plugged in.  Why so many cables?  This should have been its own system.  I think James Rolfe explains it best, please give this video a watch:

Rating: One half star.  There may have been one or two cool games.

The Sega Dreamcast:


Okay, this one wasn’t really a flop.  In fact it has its own cult-like following and is getting more and more home made or “homebrewed” games on it every week.  Check out http://www.dcisozone.com to see if I’m lying.  I love this system and the many, many games it has on it. It’s fabulous, and worth every penny of the $20 (or so) you’ll spend on it.  And the games that you download and burn are perfectly legal to (or so I’ve heard, I am not liable for what you do) burn.  Sega isn’t making any money on it.. no one is making any money on it anymore, so why would anyone care?

Rating: 4 Stars, shouldn’t have been a flop.

The Sega CD:

Remember this thing?  How awful was it?  See how fast it takes you to download an emulator for this system in its entirety, and tell me it isn’t a pile of poop.  At the time, it was innovative and made it able to have movies segway from one scene in the game to the next instead of a series of text boxes.  That didn’t make the games any better though.  Like all of the other Sega flops, namely the Saturn, the controls were crappy, and it made you want to maim yourself with your controller… or at the very least strangle someone else with the cord.

This is the abomination you had if you had both the 32x and the CD attachment.

Rating:  -1 Star… it doubled as a CD player!

Overall though, Sega is still a widely successful company, even if Nintendo had to put them in their place back around 1999 or so.  It remains to be the biggest 3rd party contractor to Nintendo and comes up with almost half of the 3rd party designed games.  Way to go Sega…  I hope you jump back into the hardware market soon!

 

There will be another installment of flops, next week.

The jester.

 

*All images and videos are property of their respective owners and may be subject to copyright laws.  All images obtained through Google Image Search.  All videos obtained through Youtube Search.*

Top 10 Tuesdays 14: For Them Sick People Out There

Posted in 1980's, 1990's, 2000's, Dreamcast (Long Live the...!), Modern, N64, NES, PS2, Retro, Top 10 Tuesdays, Transformers on February 25, 2011 by Divide By Zero

It’s that time of year again.  Everyone at my day job either has been or is now sick.  Same thing goes for the people at my night job, my weekend job, everyone I tutor, and everyone I meet.  Except for me, of course.  My immune system is one of the parts of my body that is actually more awesome than I am.

Therefore, I have taken it upon myself to give you some suggestions as to how to spend the time off you’re inevitably going to take at the slightest tickle in your throat.  Therefore, let’s get right down to brass tax with:

The Top 10 Video Games To Play When You’re Sick

#10.  Virtua Cop  (Sega Saturn)


You’re already in a crappy mood.  You may as well try and play a crappy game on a crappy system.  Playing this game with a normal controller is horrible, and I’m guessing playing with a light gun controller isn’t very much better.  And finding a plot in this game is harder than finding a pulse a palm tree.  But it’s worth checking out.  And I think I got my copy for $1.00 including shipping.

#9.  Bubsy II  (Sega Genesis)


This is a silly, childish, “feel-good” kind of game that most people would consider a “kiddy-game” but it’s still awesome.  I could go on for pages and pages about all the different quirky little things involved with this game that are enjoyable.  But I don’t have time, because this is just a top 10 list.  Consider this one chicken soup for your video game itch.

#8.  Aladdin  (Sega Genesis)


My mom used to really get into this game, so i don’t know how well this one will work for everyone, but for me it’s a comfort game.  So if you miss your mommy, or she isn’t there for one reason or another, to take care of you, this is the game to play.

#7.  Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen  (PS2)


There is never a bad time to play this game.  Optimus Prime’s butt-kicking ability mixed with the other characters special moves that you get to play will have you feeling like you can take on the world again in no time!  Definitely worth checking out.. I think I paid about $6.00 for my copy, and it is well worth the investment!

#6.  Mario 64  (N64)


This is a great overall game that used to take weeks out of our respective schedules to beat.  Now you can get it done if you can manage to get 2, possibly 3 days off from work/school.  Plus it’s good to play this game to the point where you can beat it, if only to have it under your belt.

#5.  Speed Devils  (DC)


You can definitely beat this game if you aren’t sick enough to get more than one day off.  There’s a glitch you can use that will help you out.  The most expensive car is $200,000.  The one next to it in the showroom is $20,000.  Once you save up the 20 grand, look at the car that you can afford with it, then if you switch to the $200,000 car (I think it’s called the Mystere) and hit “A” to purchase it as quickly as possible before the new price shows up on the screen.  If you do it correctly, you buy the $200,000 car for 1/10th the price.  It’s also the fastest car that will ensure you win every race.  Check it out.  With or without the glitch it’s a fun and enjoyable game to play.  I think the Dreamcast in general is that way, and they all are very cheap, and as I’ve mentioned before, the games are practically free.  So considering what you pay for ir, the Dreamcast will probably give any collector the most bang for their buck.

#4.  Kid Chameleon  (Sega Genesis)


This is a really great game.  I think it’s one of the hidden gems in the Sega library.  It’s kind of tricky, and just a little bit weird.  I forget what the plot is, but there is one there.  They call him Kid Chameleon because you can run around and get different suits that change you into different things.  There’s one that turns you into Jason (from the Friday the 13th  movie franchise), there’s a Samurai suit, and my favorite (which you don’t get until about the 6th level) suit that turns you into a tank.  There’s 35 (?) I think different suits in all and there are about 5 different suits in each level.  It’s fun running around and just seeing what the suits can do.  It’s even more fun finding your favorite one and dominating the entire game with it!  It’s an average of $4.00 on eBay, or you can get it for the Nintendo Wii’s Virtual Console for 500 points (or $5.00).

#3.  Cubivore  (Game Cube)


I don’t know where to start with this one.  It’s cute, it’s crafty, it’s enjoyable, and it’s just great.  It’s easy to slip into a game like this and find yourself in a trance, trying to get farther and farther into it.  Look at this video, it’s long but it’ll give you a good feel for the game:

Great, right?  It’s a little different, and you can tell that this is not a cookie-cutter game.  That’s why I like it so much!  For just about every popular or trendy game out there you can name, I can retort with at least 10 games that are at least 90% the same.  How many games have you played like Cubivore?  One… and that’s only if you’ve played Cubivore.  It’s worth checking out, and it’s colorful, and a little complex.  At the very least, it’ll make your NyQuil trip pretty interesting.

#2.  Virtual Hydlyde  (Sega Saturn)


This game is friggin’ weird.  It’s perfect for playing while you’re under the weather.  It’s impossible to get bored with.  The map is randomly generated, and it’s so terrible it’s great.  It’s also so great it’s terrible.  You can Youtube some of the game play on this game.. but I won’t dare link it onto this article.  I have not only a moral, but an ethical problem with that.  It’s unspeakably horrible.  Playing this game while you’re ill will be best if you take lots of breaks to puke.  …because you’re sick.  Oh and because the game sucks too.

#1.  Dr. Mario  (NES)


This is a classic, simple, easy, feel-good game.  It’s not considered a “true Mario” game because there are no pipes, no raccoon tails, no fire flowers, no koopas, and no goombas.  It’s a tetris-esque knock off with Mario thrown in to boost the sales numbers.  It’s very worth it, and the best part is it’s beatable even if you’re sick as a dog.

There’s my rundown of how you should spend your sick time.  Anything else is a waste of time.  So instead of heading to the pharmacy aisle of your local grocery store, head to gamestop instead.

See you there.

The Jester.

*All images and videos are property of their respective owners and may be subject to copyright laws.  All images obtained through Google image search. All videos obtained through Youtube search.*

Nerdy Monday 18: Is that John Stamos?

Posted in 1980's, 1990's, 2000's, Modern, Nerdy Monday with tags on February 8, 2011 by Divide By Zero

 

That’s right.  The man himself, John Phillip Stamos.  Of the Greek Stamatopoulos’.  Known and adored by millions as the protagonist of the popular ’90’s sitcom Full House, Uncle Jesse.  That’s the first time I think my generation was exposed to Mr. Stamos.  Eventhough he got his first big break as Blackie Parrish on General Hospital in 1982.  About a decade before he looked like this:

Pound for pound, his hair is more awesome than you.

That caption is totally true.  He’s also the only man alive or dead, in the entire universe, past-present-and-future, in all discovered and undiscovered dimensions that successfully rocked a mullet.  No, it didn’t look good on you, nor your mom, let it go.

What I liked about his role as Jesse during the run of Full House was how much character development he progressed through.  Early on in the show, he was the motorcycle riding, leather jacket wearing, bad boy.  Everyone loved him for who he was!  And as the show went on, he fell in love with Rebecca Donaldson, sewed his wild oats, had some kids, settled down, and became an even more lovable character.  He slowly transformed from the Elvis loving delinquent that kids pretended to be, into the Elvis loving adoring uncle/successful musician that kids a little older wanted to grow up to be.  He was always my favorite character on that show.  But that’s enough about that, I don’t think I have to mention Full House when I bring up John Stamos, because his talent, coolness, versatility, and awesomability (yeah, I have to make up variations of that word to describe his Stamosness) reaches farther than I think you can even imagine.

For instance, I have been thinking about writing something about Mr. Stamos for a few weeks now and just today I started following him on twitter.  The most recent tweet I read from his profile was:

“RT @bobsaget Time to get my shit together today/gonna make a statue of @JohnStamos with it.- good, maybe HE’LL listen to your crap!”

What?  Uncle Jesse would never say something like that.  But Stamos can get away with it, he’s just that… whatever “that” is, he’s it.

After Full House was cancelled…

Fun Fact: did you know that during the first season of Full House, Stamos’ character was credited as being named Jesse Cochran?  During the second season, he changed his last name to Katsopolis to “highlight his Greek heritage”.

…Stamos made a bunch of made for TV movies, a couple of stage productions, a few flopped TV series’, and some commercials.  He made a short film entitled simply: “I am Stamos”.  I have not seen it, oh but I so want to!  I have no idea why he didn’t capitalize on his awesomeness right after the Full House chapter of his life came to a close.

Think about where you’ve heard his name, and what you heard it for lately.  Can’t remember?  Let me help you:

  • He’s getting ready to be honored by the “Project Cuddle” people.
  • The Michigan extortion case he was involved with.
  • He was one of the first people to board the new Disney Dream Cruise line thing.  Whatever that was all about.
  • Glee.
  • He roasted Bob Saget.
  • He toured with the Beach Boys.
  • Recorded with Billy Joel.
  • I’m pretty sure he had something to do with the “Stamos” in “Rebecca Romijn-Stamos”.
  • 2007 TV Land Award for “Favorite Elvis Impersonation” from Full House.

Aside from I am Stamos, I could only find 2 cameo appearances in his filmogrophy.  It should be more like 400, in my opinion.  I wish I could find more cameos, but I did find:

  • A Daytime Emmy nomination [for his breakout role].
  • A shared Emmy nomination for the Beach Boys miniseries.
  • 2 Golden Icon awards.
  • A Soapy award.
  • The above mentioned TV Land award, and a nomination for another one.
  • 2 Young Artist Award nominations
  • A Young Artist Award

This man has been the epitome of “cool” since the 1990’s, won awards, married models, and lived a very Full Life.  That should be the name of his next show.. as long as I get a credit for that.  He was a heart throb for women of all ages there for a while, and probably still is for some cougars out there.  Have you seen him lately?

Your mom would get with him, if she had the chance.

Mr. Stamos has kept a very clean reputation, played the bad boy, divorced a Victoria’s Secret model, and been the envy of boys and girls, men and women everywhere.  John, you’ve become a pop culture icon, and a staple to a lot of peoples childhood.  I hope to see more of you in the future.

“Is that John Stamos?  Did Nick know John Stamos?  Were they brothers?” ~Nick Swardson.

The Jester.

Nerdy Monday 16: The Sitcom Wisemen.

Posted in 1990's, Modern, Nerdy Monday, Retro, T.V. shows on January 25, 2011 by Divide By Zero

There’s a formula to the cast of any given sitcom.  There has to be a star who is somehow naive.  It’s up to the supporting cast to guide and direct him/her on their journey.  In the supporting cast, there has to be a wealthy person, a best friend, a girlfriend who post often proves to be the voice of reason, and of course there has to be a wise man, or a mentor.  I’ve picked 3 of my favorite wise men, and dons some research on them.  This is my tribute to the sitcom wise men!

Wilson, from Home Improvement.

In the world of the sitcom wise men, Wilson was in a class all his own.  He was in the popular show based on Tim Allen’s stand up comedy that ran all the way through the 1990’s.  Literally, the show ran from 1991 to 1999.  And I’m pretty sure Wilson was in every episode at least once.  Wilson, or known by his full name:  Wilson Wilson, Jr. played the extremely intelligent best friend and next door neighbor to Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor.  And whenever Tim follied up in his every day life, he ended up chatting across that infamous fence with Wilson.  Time after time, Wilson had the best possible answer for Tim.  One of the running gags in the show (if you remember) is that Tim would take that advice that Wilson gave him (that was usually most noted by Wilson’s historical points, or famous philosophical works made to drive the point home) and he would turn around and try to tell them to his wife in the show, or his audience on Tool Time.  Every single time, he would misquote Wilson, or the name of the person who made the famous work, or the historical event.  He would mispronounce Wilson’s long words, on a few occasions, and those were my favorite ones.

If you isolate the persona of Wilson, and look back on the show, that was the 1990’s way of trying to give your children (namely my generation) a moral compass.  Exactly the same way The Animaniacs were allowed on the WB Network because of the last 40 second segment entitled “The Wheel of Morality”.  You can’t blame them.  They were the ’90’s, they always had some awkward way of trying to teach kids the right thing to do.

Wilson, we thank you for all that you gave to us (and our kids) growing up, and wish you were still around to impart your wisdom.

And here’s what he looks like in real life:

He was also the creepy old guy in the horror-cult-classic Pet Sematary.

Dr. Cox, from Scrubs.

What can I say about this guy?  Dr. Percival Cox, M.D. has been a mentor to me since I started watching the show Scrubs in its 3rd season.  I’ve been a closet fan of John C. McGinly (the actor who plays Dr. Cox) for a long time.  He’s one of those guys who has been in every movie ever made.  Some of you may remember him from Platoon, or Wall Street. The younger kids probably first saw him as “one of the Bob’s” in Office Space. Any ways you slice it, he is awesome.  He is the epitome of awesome.  Back during my last few years of college, my friends and I would party on Friday & Saturday nights while watching DVDs of this show.  Each one of us had a character that we most related our personalities to.  I got elected Dr. Cox.  One of my friends was the Janitor, our friend “Turk” automatically was Turk.  And the list went on.

When word of that little game got around campus a little bit, some people looked down on me because I was “A Dr. Cox”.  I didn’t care though, I took it as a huge compliment, he is the smartest person on the show.  I mean, who else could give out little nuggets of wisdom like these?  Haha, I love it.  And if anyone disagrees with me, I think this video clip of Dr. Cox’ top 5 rants will change your mind about him.

Also, another thing about Dr. Cox is how he delivers his wisdom.  He runs the entire gambit of wisdom-giving.  He can be hateful and sarcastic, he can be downright arrogant and a little rude.  He can be completely angry, and he can also be nice, gentle, kind, and sincere.  If you’ve ever watched the show, you know what I’m talking about and you can see the compassion in his eyes when he’s talking about something he truly cares about.  He has taught me to refrain from “biting” someone (figuratively, of course) when a simple “growl” will suffice.  And I guarantee you will learn a lot and have a few very good laughs if you scroll through that Coxism website I linked to up there.  Thank you Perry Cox for coming onto the scene and being a supporting cast member that steals the show!

Last, but certainly not least, Mr. Feeny from Boy Meets World.

George Hamilton Feeny.  Who doesn’t remember this character?  The way I think about this role, played by veteran actor William Daniels, is that it progressed throughout the entire series to envelope relationships with all of the other characters.  There wouldn’t have been a Boy Meets World, at least as we know it, had this character not been involved.  Think about this seriously, for a minute!  He started out in the series as Cory & Shawn’s (or “Sean’s”, whatever) 6th grade teacher.  Fast forward to the end of the series, and he helped out every single character through various troubling and sometimes even tragic circumstances.  I would go so far as to say he was the sole person to advance everyone elses character to the next phase of life.  He helped Shawn out when his mom ran off and his dad went to look for her.  He helped Cory out pretty much every episode.  He was a “Wilson” to the Matthews’ (the parents), and was basically a foundation for the older brother Eric.  In so many ways he helped character development, while doling out good advice and being a moral compass, simultaneously.   And he did it all without being maniacal, egocentric, aggressive, or manipulative.  And rarely did he ever raise his voice.  He was a true role model that kids my age were lucky enough to aspire to.  Thank you George Feeny for everything!

Check out this video that is very memorable to me, and was probably one of the more funny Feeny moments:

That’s my rundown for Nerdy Monday this week.  See you by the T.V.

The Jester.

*All images and videos are property of their respective owners and may be subject to copyright laws.  All images obtained through Google Image Search.  All videos obtained through Youtube.*

Top 10 Tuesdays 6: Vids to play on your honeymoon.

Posted in 1980's, 1990's, 2000's, Dreamcast (Long Live the...!), Girlfriends, Halo, Modern, NES, Playstation, PS2, Retro, TMNT, Top 10 Tuesdays, XBox on January 25, 2011 by Divide By Zero

In hopes of getting through all this winter-y nastiness, I figure I’m going to start looking forward to Spring.  Spring is a wonderful time of the year, and I’d be willing to put money on the fact that there are more weddings in Spring than there are in any other season.  It’s the time of rebirth, rejuvenation, Spring Fever, and starting anew.

If you’re a hardcore gamer, you play games in any given circumstance.  And I mean, on your honeymoon is no exception.  You are going to have some down time in between all the consummating, believe it or not.  Hardcore gamers are more loyal to their video games than mailmen are to the mail.  Nor rain, nor sleet, nor nuptials are going to keep you from playing.  Nor power outages, nor earthquakes, nor slow internet connectivity either.  None of that will stop a true gamer, we’re like electronic Boy Scouts.. we’re always prepared.

It’s a sad but true fact that there are a lot of video gamers out there that rush through work, skip social events, even flake out on funerals [which is astonishingly disrespectful by the way] when they’re in the middle of something on their favorite game.  With that being said, let’s jump right into it, and talk about the…

Top 6 Video Games to Play on Your Honeymoon!

I know what you’re thinking… and yes, this is the first top 10 I’ve done that doesn’t go up to 10.  But if you remember my first Top 10, I said specifically that sometimes I’ll go past 10, sometimes I won’t make it to 10.  So get over it and enjoy the rest of the post.

#6.  The Little Mermaid  (Game Boy/Super Game Boy (SNES))

Okay, I’m going to be honest on this one.  This isn’t only for your new bride to play while you’re in the bathroom, or running down the block to pick up food or whatever it is you’re doing leaving the hotel room.  This is actually a challenging game.  It goes to show that some graphic design companies (in this case Capcom) can take something as little kid-ish and as girly as the little mermaid and actually make a decently challenging game out of it.  I get frustrated playing it, it’s quite hard.  And to be even more honest, it’s only on this list because it’d be a good tool for you and your better half to bond over early on in your marriage. Who knows?  Later on, if she starts getting on your case about playing too much C.O.D. Black Ops, you’ll have at least a little ammunition for your side of the argument.

#5.  18 Wheeler Pro American Trucker (Dreamcast)

If you haven’t played this game, it’s pretty awesome.  The only thing about it is, I’m pretty sure it isn’t realistic at all.  It’s like the difference between Forza Motorsports and Speed Devils.  If you haven’t played those games either, go play them.  AFTER you play 18 wheeler.  I included this game on this list because you’ve just taken a leap of faith with a woman to embark on a new life together.  You need something to help you feel like a man.  Short of taking classes, changing your lifestyle, getting your CDL, and buying a truck… this is it.

#4.  Halo 2  (XBox)

I know, I know.. You’re thinking “Jester… enough with the friggin’ Halo already!”  But I’m telling you, there is never a bad time to play it!  It’s addicting, it revolutionized first person shooters back in the day.  Then Call of Duty manned-up and took the whole fps genre to a different level with their entire franchise.  This game is perfect to play with your new wife because you can either work together towards a common goal [ridding the universe of those pesky aliens] or you can battle to see who is the better soldier.  The choice is yours, just remember… while playing with a new bride, it’s important to take into account that from now on there are going to be consequences to every action you take.  Think about that for a while.

#3.  A Boy and His Blob  (NES)

I can’t report on the new remake they did of this game on the Wii, because I haven’t played it yet.  But this game came up in a conversation I had with a friend of mine about a week ago.  I started thinking about it, and while I was writing up this article, I decided to include it.  I haven’t played through this game in its entirety since I was about 8 years old, so I can’t tell you all about the plot and everything, but here’s what I remember:  You play as the boy, and you have your own blob.  You feed the blob different flavors of jellybeans, and depending on the flavor, the blob changes into a certain shape.  A ladder, or a bridge, or something.  It’s up to you to place the blob in the right place, and feed him the right flavor of jellybean.  It gets rather cryptic, and intriguing.  And if you’re playing it on your honeymoon, you wife is going to be there.  And since you have a wife now, she’s going to remember everything for you.  And since there are about 100 different flavors of jellybeans, and you’ve been married for less than a week, you can use her honed skill to your advantage.  It might be the only time in the marriage you get to do so.  Let me know how that one goes!

#2.  Rampage  (NES)

This also came out on Playstation 1, and again on the PS2, but there’s nothing like playing the original 8-bit game.  It’s a fantastic 2 player game where both of you play as monsters and you just keep traveling right, and destroying buildings.  It’s perfect for if you feel a fight coming on, or if you’ve been playing all the other games on the list, and hogging the controller.  If she actually wants to play with you, great!  If she doesn’t, then you have a whole new set of problems on your hands.

The Winner, and #1.  Battle Toads  (NES)

As we all know, this game is a thinly veiled attempt to cash in on the Ninja Turtles franchise.  This game came out not too long after the TMNTs hit the scene.  So a different company came up with a far-fetched synonym for “ninja” and a different amphibian, threw them together, and marketed them as something different.  It’s been going on since the dawn of time.  Anyways, that’s not why this is the best game to play on your honeymoon.  The reason why is because there is no versus mode, only cooperative.  It’s an arcade style button-masher with one fatal glitch… they left friendly fire turned on.  So if your new mate is talking too much and frustrates you to the point of slapping her or something (or, vice-versa for the girls out there reading this) don’t slap her in real life, that’s a horrible way to go.  Pop in this game, and go to town on her/him.  Blame it on the glitch, they’ll never know the difference.

See you at the reception,

The Jester.

 

*All images are property of their respective owners and may be subject to copyright laws.  All images obtained through Google Image Search.*