Thursday, September 1, 2011

Geek Rant Topic 21: Horrifying

When All Else Fails, the only person afraid around here is Mousa The 14

I pose a question: Horror. Why?

I'm seriously asking you here folks, what is it with geeks and horror? Next to Science Fiction and Fantasy it seems the next genres that seem to appeal to our base is Horror and Monster Movies.

Dare I ask why exactly? Why is it whenever the best episodes of Doctor Who come up they're the horror episodes like Midnight where a copycat creature that exists as nothing but a voice that takes your mind by repeating everything you say until it overtakes you and nobody listened to the solutions from the main hero. Or The episode Blink where if you look away from the stone angels statues they'll come alive and kill you. Those are considered some of the best for many reasons but many report to how scary it was.

Then there's zombies. I hate zombies, but normal geeks can't get enough of them. Zombies are so prevalent among geek culture they're bonus content in our military First Person Shooters. And many acclaimed games are horror based or involve zombie apocalypses like Eternal LinkDarkness, Resident Evil, Silent Hill, Left 4 Dead, and so... Much... More....

Want to know a geek's favorite movie? Evil Dead and it's ilk. Favorite movie maker? Sam Raimi. New anime they just got into? High School of the Dead. Favorite writer? None other than our eldritch horror writing non-euclidean maniac known as H.P. Lovecraft. There's so much geek-driven merchandise and tributes and games as tributes to Lovecraft's stories that we have Cthulu plushies! Plushies!

And dare I mention that we have "zombie apocalypse survival guides"? I mean really, of all the novelty items one could create... And yet I've seen it, I've heard it, entire discussions about surviving a possible zombie apocalypse.

I'm a geek, I understand many things, I understand the love for science fiction, mystical creatures, speculation, mythology, astrology, legends, fantasy, Lovecraft (I mean really, Elder gods and The Necronomicon were all his ideas and briliant ones at that), werewolves, vampires, all that stuff, but horror as a genre does not make sense to me.

I'm not ragging on anyone's tastes, I mean not everyone loves superheroes like I do, and I'll never understand the market for a movie like The Expendables, but at some point something stops becoming a personal taste thing and starts becoming a pattern of thought and when you are on the very outside of this pattern of thought, everything within it confuses you and I want answers. Even my own sister is in love with Chiller TV and she's the least geeky geek I know. What. Am. I. Missing?

What does it all have in common? What's the appeal? I'm all about answers and instead I just have questions, there's just too many questions.

Geeks of all walks of life, tell me your secrets: What's with the Horror and zombies?

-Good Bye, Good Luck, and Imagination is Your Greatest Power
Mousa The 14

Friday, August 26, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Geek Rant Topic 20: Anime Elitism

When All Else Fails begins, you know Mousa the 14 has an issue with something.

So some time ago in a comics sub forum, a fellow member was inquiring about what sort of American comics should he get his manga reading friend to look into. He said something that made me laugh outrageously loud and you'll see why in a second and if you agree with the statement you'll need to read this article more than you realize. Here's the actual quote....

And, regardless of actual content, she does argue that manga is better than American comics because they're "deep." This from the woman who said she gave up on American books after reading one Batman that she remembers nothing about.

What can I say? I like to think a lot of people are smart, and they probably are, which just makes me wonder how such ignorance could come about.

If I have to say it once, I have to say it a thousand times because some people are just too wrapped up in their own perceived superiority to understand:

Anime and Manga are not inherently superior to any other animated series or comic book. These things are exactly the same things. The exact same media just given different names based on their country of origin. In fact, we in the west shouldn't even be calling Anime and manga the names we've given them. Those are just the Japanese words for them. To them all animation is anime, including our cartoons. And to them, all comics are called manga.

Okay, instead of chastising the people with an elitism/uniqueness complex (even though they need to get their facts straight and get taken down a peg), I may as well come up with a reason why. I mean really, why is there a belief that Japanese comics and cartoons are better?

One possibility is the quality filter, a real life version of Sturgeon's law which states that 90% of everything is crap. When companies license something they tend to want to license things that are good or have a guaranteed audience so usually the anime and manga we see commonly on television or in our bookstores are, more likely than not, the good ones are at least the decent ones. This means in their country of origin there is a whole mess of schlock that we're not seeing. But there could be more to it than just that.

I can sort of understand the perspective of those that may think anime and manga are superior; exotic things can seem all unique and new and fresh. Mainly because they use a completely different set of tropes due to cultural differences, so when you see these tropes that are new to you they may seem all unique and deep. However, if you you watch and read enough or you pay attention you'll realize all that stuff from overseas is as cliche and overused as the stuff here.

Here's a better answer though: different standards. Americans and the Japanese have different standards. What they believe should be aimed towards kids we wouldn't even consider should be for children. The Japanese are not shy about characters being outright perverts, some sexuality, violence, death, stuff like that. In American cartoons, if the moral guardians got a whiff of any of that, the cartoon wouldn't even make the airwaves or get shunted to late nights with the rest of the Adult Swim shlock. And obviously since most anime are based off of manga this is true for manga. In America, once upon a time, superhero comics were the only comics allowed to exist thanks to the moral guardians of the time period believing comics of anything of a more graphic nature woudl be "corrupting the youth" like television before it and video games in the here and now. However with the onset of superheroes being allowed to grow up and other comics slowly and struggling to make it to the forefront, we've had many good, deep, humorous, complex, emotional, and enlightening graphic novels by amazing writers: Grant Morrison, Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman (Thus further proving my theory and bias that all the best writers are from the United Kingdom and Ireland), Geoff Johns, Jeff Smith, Chris Claremont, Brian Michael Bendis (My favorite by far, his work on New Avengers and Ultimate Spider-man are amazing.), Kurt Busiek, Mark Waid; Each a genius in their own right you should be reading up. Right. Now.

Now here's another quote from the aforementioned thread when we asked about the girl's tastes in manga:
So, just called her for more info on her tastes—she likes Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, D.Gray-man, Code Geass (the anime, she hasn't read the manga), Ranma ½, and InuYasha (though she did confess it's a bit repetitive.)

Goodness, if this person was looking for "deep" or "complex" or even "meaningful" she picked the worst anime and manga for that argument except for maybe Code Geass (I haven't watched it but it's premise and all the discussion it spawns probably means it's worth something.). Most of that is shlock. Entertaining, funny, even decent, but most definitely shallow shlock. And don't get the wrong idea, I love Ranma 1/2 and Dragonball, but dear lord, at least I don't delude myself into thinking they're more than what they are.

In terms of anime and manga, there is so much shlock it's not even funny. I mean let's take a stab at just the stuff that's well known to people in the west like Dragonball/Dragonball Z, which is basically a fun romp across a magical mythological land with tons of toilet humor. A fighting manga that was almost making fun of itself. In fact, let's take a look at most of the anime and manga that become popular in the west like Bleach, Naruto, Voltron, Sailor Moon, Tokyo Mew Mew, and to a lesser extent, One Piece are all a bunch of Good Guys versus Bad Guys in escalating fights/ monster of the week that boils down to THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP.

Beyblade and Pokemon? You need to be a nice good person that doesn't cheat to win and POWER OF FRIENDSHIP! Ranma 1/2? Mostly bad jokes and characters tied up in obligations they cannot commit to, it's a trashy comedy, a good trashy comedy, but a trashy comedy nonetheless. Digimon Adventure 01? An admittedly deep character study with amazing character development, characterizations, and interactions and while the plot was basic it still was a decent character piece. It's still basically about THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP though.

I mean I'm not the only one who sees this, even major anime and manga fans know about this two. I mean GeekNights occasionally stumbles upon some crud anime. Anime World Order, a major anime podcast with a panel of self-proclaimed experts are all about differentiating the deep and complex from the mediocre from the shlock. The entire premise of the podcast, Dave and Joel's Fast Karate For the Gentlemen, is that they overview bad anime.

I can't believe that it's so hard for people to comprehend that there is no superiority or inferiority in media or country of origin. Anyone with a modicum of intellect can determine that you must observe everything on a case by case, individual basis. Declaring a whole sub-medium as inferior is maddening, horrifying even. It demonstrates a form of closed-mindedness that a trouble sub-culture like geeks do not need.

It's like saying videos on the internet are inherently inferior to videos on television. A lot of videos on the internet are actually amazing (Loading Ready Run) and far better than what's on TV (Jersey Shore) or in the movies (Battlefield Earth).

The moral of the story is quite simple, there is no such thing as a superior medium for entertainment, they all have their positives and negatives and different methods of conveying information. Furthermore, creating a further split by where this media comes from, east and west, is even sillier. One has to understand that 90% of everything is crap in every medium, you just gotta work at finding the 10% in them all.

-Good Bye, Good Luck, and Imagination is Your Greatest Power
Mousa The 14

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Geek Rant Topic 19: Hipster

When All Else Fails returns, there is irony abounds as Mousa The 14 talks about hipsters. Sigh...

Thank you Coelasquid. Oh by the way, you guys should totally read Manly Guys Doing Manly Things

So yeah, a few months ago I heard this term thrown around and I had no idea what the heck it meant. After a lot of osmosis I finally figured a solid-ish definition of this nebulous and insulting term.

Now what the hell is a hipster and why do geeks seem to hate them above all else?

Well to begin, hipsters are like this time period's Emos. Back when I was in middle school in like 2004-06, Emo kids were a big deal. Like Hipsters of today they aren't exactly easy to define but the short version of what I understood at the time was that they were over emotional attention seeking goth wannabes and their biggest claim to fame was cutting themselves. the song most associated with them is Untitled (How Could This Happen To Me) by Simple Plan and the song that best describes them is well this...

Hah hah ha, hilarious.

But yeah, back in my day it was a big deal to call people emo or make fun of emos. I never saw to many but they were "there". Now today we have Hipsters. Slightly easier to define it turns out. Hipsters are defined by "Irony" and being "Indie". Through some irritating sense of self-worth they only listen to underground music so underground even the Indie kids think they're being pretentious. This video by Graham Stark of Loading Ready Run describes the music aspect of Hipsters perfectly though he refers to them as scenesters.

And really you take that policy and apply that to every other interest and you essentially have a Hipster, one famous quote associated with their sort is "I liked (insert previously obscure media here) before it was mainstream/cool/popular." They also tend to like things... "Ironically" even though they usually don't know what irony means. Like if it's bad or kiddy or mainstream they like it but they don't genuinely like it.

I suppose as an artist I take note of their visual stylings and come to realize that the best way to describe a hipster's appearance is to take the things you'd associate with a geek and put it on the personality of aforementioned scenesters. Thick black glasses? They have those. Those wonderful fedoras and other such dapper clothing? They have a monopoly on those too. And while I'm probably the only straight male that likes flat caps nowadays, Hipsters have taken those away from us too. The Rummage Sale Reject style of fashion our ladies occasional take to? Make the colors a little drabber and poof instant hipster. Neckbeards? Uh.. yeah, Hipsters can keep those. One of my funnier ways of describing a hipster is taking all the things geeks love and perverting it into something unlikeable. I've also come to figure out they seem to be like "White Trash with Money."

Or so I thought.

Turns out not all Hipsters are annoying whiny underground people, those are just the most prevalent. In fact one could say that geeks and hipsters have a lot more in common than many would think.

The idea of a hipster is to conform to anti-conformity, the value of independent thought. Which means that if something is popular by definition they will vehemently dislike it. This would be similar to a typical geek's nonconformity where it's not that we actively dislike things that are mainstream, and sometimes we do, it's just that we enjoy a lot of things that just happen to be mainstream or straddle the line between well known and being something only geeks know. In fact geeks seem to be able to make the distinction within our ranks and if someone actively dislikes thing because they're mainstream, we'll... be less kind towards them.

Hmm, let's take this definition from urban Dictionary and see if there's anything more I can parse out....

Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20's and 30's that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter. The greatest concentrations of hipsters can be found living in the Williamsburg, Wicker Park, and Mission District neighborhoods of major cosmopolitan centers such as New York, Chicago, and San Francisco respectively. Although "hipsterism" is really a state of mind,it is also often intertwined with distinct fashion sensibilities. Hipsters reject the culturally-ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often be seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight-fitting jeans, old-school sneakers, and sometimes thick rimmed glasses. Both hipster men and women sport similar androgynous hair styles that include combinations of messy shag cuts and asymmetric side-swept bangs. Such styles are often associated with the work of creative stylists at urban salons, and are usually too "edgy" for the culturally-sheltered mainstream consumer. The "effortless cool" urban bohemian look of a hipster is exemplified in Urban Outfitters and American Apparel ads which cater towards the hipster demographic. Despite misconceptions based on their aesthetic tastes, hipsters tend to be well educated and often have liberal arts degrees, or degrees in maths and sciences, which also require certain creative analytical thinking abilities.

Let's see, I've already covered the counter culture thing in the previous paragraph and the music stuff before that and I've vaguely covered the clothing thing, though I forgot to mention in addition to be a little scruffy, their clothing is stuff you'd find a thrift store, some odd amalgam of old clothing, taking a bunch or either cool things and bringing them together like the aforementioned fedoras. They almost look like your stereotypical "Ze Arteest" character archetype with a side order of of "I'm so cool without even trying", things that look thrown together. Geeks tend to dress like... well casually and if we look cool while doing it then that's awesome, but generally our most hipster-esque aspects tends to look like costumes from our favorite media, fedoras and trench coats, and rummage sale reject-like looks are a part of that.

Ooh, the independent thought and progressive politics, well geeks are a fascinating breed where you'd be hard pressed to find a conservative one and if you do then you will rightly shout them down because how dare they support equal rights for white males and only them and anyone who is less fortunate than them should stay that way.
(Note, I don't actually think all conservatives are horrible people to be shouted down, it's a joke, please don't hurt me.)

Point is, most geeks are either liberal or libertarian and clearly this is the same for hipsters it would seem, only one supports individual and independent thought regardless of when it could be a detriment above all else whilst the other is really more in favor in the freedom of information and not having information destroyed or obfuscated above all else. Or at least that's what I've come to understand.

Hmm, typically in their 20s and 30s..... yes. Definitely. I'll cover this in a future installment but basically one of the bigger aspects of geekdom is being interested in interests and hobbies that many "mainstream" people or adults of old would say are childish things we should've abandoned long ago, so the age group is the same, especially since geeks are associated a lot with nostalgia and being in our 20s and 30s is around the time we start to look back at our childhood as we arrive at adulthood and decide either or not we want to move on or not.

Now the liberal arts degree thing is interesting considering I hear a lot of geeks, when not entering an engineering field, is more likely to be in liberal arts because we consume a lot of media and what better way to go immerse ourselves in media than liberal arts where you can learn about journalism, literature, language, communications, all that stuff, and with the math and science aspects which can overlap with the engineering majors this is even more so.

In many ways we have more in common than we think and perhaps Geeks hate so much because perhaps too many Hipsters that are jerks and we don't want to be associated with them. I mean we are one or two attitude and hobby shifts away from being considered a hipster which can be more scary than being considered a geek. I mean really, no one has a phrase like "Douchebag geek" or "Geek trash" but "Hipster trash" and "
douche-bag hipster" are thrown around far easier. They're like a dark reflection of what we could be seen as by the uninitiated and really, some people don't want to have a worse stigma than they already have.

-Good Bye, Good Luck, and Imagination is Your Greatest Power
Mousa The 14

P.S. Wow, I can't believe I didn't look to Tv Tropes, I didn't think there was an article there on this. Well, I suppose it hasn't changed much besides the inclusion of a love of art house films which can coincide with a geek's love for b-movies and "So Bad It's Good" movies or film geeks having an interest in art house movies in general.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Geek Rant Topic 18: The Internet Reviewer

When all Else Fails returns and I, Mousa the 14, have come to talk about something a bit recent I'm sure many of you are intimate with and if not, come and learn.

So on the internet we have this budding "career" that's been going on for a few years now. I've brought up previously the network of internet reviewers known as that guy with the, and well that's what this is about.

Somehow, at some point once upon a time a man named James Rolfe made a review series called The Angry Video Game Nerd where he took on the persona of a foul-mouthed and bitter nerd reviewing very old video games. Somehow from there things just exploded and in a few years from his introduction, internet reviewers were everywhere. Not that they weren't there before, obviously people must've been doing written reviews of anything everywhere. Mr. Rolfe's show was however not only informative, but entertaining and comedic and even had skits and the like, and it was in video format to boot. This is especially notable because he came out around year before YouTube, so I imagine with the onset of YouTube, word of the man got around.

With the combination of someone doing it first and YouTube being a free platform for nigh everyone, almost every geek with an opinion and a camera wanted to do a show like Mr. Rolfe did. Why? Maybe they want to be heard, maybe they want to be entertaining, maybe it's for fun, maybe it's for the money, either way, the wave was coming and could not be stopped.

This whole internet reviewing thing is an interesting format, primarily becuase of how varied it is whch has been both good and bad. ou see, there seems to be two different sorts of reviews and the overlap between the two can be so muddled that the lack of distinction has caused anger, fconfusion, o frustration among the audience.

Reviews can be defined as Informative or Entertainment and while reviews are really meant to be both, usually it's pretty obvious where it's leaning towards. For example, Yahtzee, The Escapist's video game reviewer leans heavily on the entertainment side, using absurdly odd and hilarious metaphors and snappy visuals to describe his feelings about a video game, but what he presents is an extreme exaggeration of his opinion or simply accentuating the negative. Usually the games he reviews are not as horrid and he admits this to be true, he just tends to point out and emphasize nitpicked issues that bother him and could potentially other others. And sometimes he's simply pointing something out to make a good joke.

On the flipside we have gents such as Bennett the Sage on Blistered Thumbs or MovieBob on The Escapist, a video game reviewer and a movie reviewer respectively. Both take calmer, slower, more analytic approaches, especially Sage whose reviews are usually highly informative and tell exactly what is the good and bad about a game. However some of the times, reviews like these can be boring or dull, but if you want information you look to these. However, MovieBob tends to throw in a bit more entertainment value into his movie reviews, but make no mistake, it's clear they tend highly on the informative and analytic side

Sadly, a lot of geeks are not very smart and they can have trouble seeing when things are meant to be taken seriously or not. Despite the fact Yahtzee's reviews are not the full picture, many will take his word as gospel and assuming that because he says a game is bad, it must be bad. If they had half a brain they would notice that despite the fact his review of say Red Dead Redemption seemed to the flowing in negatives, he loved the game and had it in one of his top five of the year.

This is especially glaring for the reviewing conglomerate known as That Guy With The that seems to be confused about what it's trying to be.

That Guy With The is a website that gathers internet reviewers under a singular Channel Awesome, founded by Doug Walker and his friends, better known as The Nostalgia Critic, a loud, angry, bitter, Daffy Duck-esque character that reviews all of the bad movies of the 90s and 80s. This site has reviewers of almost every niche, usually repeating so if you don't like one movie reviewer, they have another, or if you want an anime reviewer, they have more than 4 to choose from.

The problem is that the site heavily combines, meshes and stirs around, as well as blurs, frappes, and smudges the line between Informative and Entertaining to the point that you don't know what to expect anymore; some opinions could the facetious and completely in character, or only partly in character, or be totally informative. It's very jarring for some, especially of you are incapable of telling the difference between a character and someone's actual opinion or the difference between a legitimate problem or something used for a joke. This is even more of a concern when you realize you have no idea what the goal of the site is; reviewing or entertaining?

Ideally reviews give you overview, analysis, opinions, and perspective on a given program without spoiling anything or giving away the plot. They are merely meant to say if something is worth your while or not. However, a lot of comedic reviews take a page out of the book of the show Mystery Science Theatre 3000 (A geeky show I'm unfamiliar with but notably inspired near all of them.) where instead of doing a proper review, they critique a program bit by bit throughout it's entirety, spoilers and all, mostly so they can have a gag about parts of the program in general. If you wanted a review to know whether or not you want to see or play something, these types are not what you're looking for because you are learning about plot and character elements you may want to find out for yourself. Pretty much every movie reviewer on the website uses this style which is definitely a lot of fun, but might turn people off if they wanted to look for a normal review that happened to be entertaining.

The video game reviews primarily on the other hand seem to be entirely like normal reviews unless explicitly stated otherwise; they inform and entertain, but primarily inform. One of the better synthesizers of these two elements would be Angry Joe of and it's spin-off video game review site Blistered Thumbs . This is probably because it's harder to spoil a video game when they are longer and you want to inform the viewer of the gameplay and other such elements. So with serious and entertainment reviewers all in the same place, how do you distinguish? One obviously should use their brains but as previously mentioned, people are not exactly insightful enough to distinguish between the two.

This isn't just though, this can be for reviewers everywhere who have attempted to take up a fictional persona and bare their opinions to the world. Whose the entertainment? Whose the real reviewer? At this point the lines will become so blurred that the term "review" may come to lose all meaning.

Characters can seem to diminish the actual opinions of the person makings the review. Furthermore, playing characters while reviewing makes it easy for the reviewers to hide behind the character when something goes sour with the audience. I love character which is why I know there needs to be proper distinguishing between being entertainment and being informative.

Many also note that entertainment reviewers have this tendency of injecting plots and memes that can take away form the actual review. I agree that the reviewers are free to have their review and their skit shows, but some would prefer having them separate, primarily when they have little to nothing to do with one another.

There is also an issue of quality control that I may elaborate in other installments, but many of you are probably aware of Sturgeon's Law. If you'ere not, the short version is that 90% of everything is crap and the internet is the biggest evidence of that. There's a reason why the internet is known as a cesspool to the informed and uninformed (for different reasons.). The Internet is nigh free, a wild frontier, a wild wild West where there virtually is no law, and no executives. You can come out why whatever content you want regardless of quality or content or being worthwhile. Part of why exists is to the pick out that remaining good 10% and bring them all to one place. I mean imagine how many Angry "Insert Medium here" Nerds there were that came and went? Or the utterly sickeningly large amount of That Guy With The Glasses knock offs to appear and die in an instant. I cannot even begin to imagine the grotesque number of That "Gender-specific noun" in the "Article of clothing" people there are and simply disappeared into the ether.

I love the internet reviewing scene, it's a wonderful and free creative outlet for many that allows them to be able to creatively express their feelings for something they love or hate, if they can't draw or write or make music or other such things (Unlike the magnificent me) . But right now, the whole "medium", if you can call it that, is a bit of a mess. Hopefully things will stabilize in a few years, or some form of "selling out" comes by. Either way, I can't wait to see how things turn out.

Now if you will excuse me, I have a show to make. To boldly go where no podcast has ever gone before!

-Good Bye, Good Luck, and Imagination Is Your Greatest Power.
Mousa The 14

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Geek Rant Topic 16: Revisiting the Geek Definiton

When All Else Fails, you call Mousa the 14, that one ranting geek.

Remember this old thing?

I've been doing a bit of net gallivanting and have found that I'm a bit conflicted in my definitions.

What? What is it? What's with the giggles?

Oh Right. Get your jollies out of the way first.
Done making fun of me and the laughing? Good, now on to the real discussion.

A I was saying, I have found that my definitions and the manner in which I have come upon the have been a little off.

But first, before I elaborate on the geek definition, I wan to shove the Nerd one out of the way

NERD: A socially inadequate person who is noted not only for their poor social skills or lack of caring of mainstream interests and styles, but for their intelligence, display of said intelligence, and deep knowledge of a wide variety of fields or a specified field. The big difference between a geek and a nerd is that a Nerd's brilliance is usually within academic pursuits. They are Science geeks, math geeks, computer geeks. If it is an academic field with real life applications or at least has a real field of study and you are intellectually vested in it, you are a nerd.

Was my old definition and little has changed. The social inadequacy isn't quite necessary but basically a nerd is someone who is just plain smart. He's the guy who fixes your computer and does your homework for you. Those guys that TV shows put in glasses and button down shirts and suspenders and make them spout facts, just facts, ad nothing but the facts because they're that smart.

Basically 95% of the lyrics to this song:
Are about them.

Now for the other 10% about Dungeons and Dragons and choosing between Kirk or Picard and X-Men comics and Renaissance Faires? Geek, or at least geek as how I defined it previously

The geek has always been a different monster.

GEEK: A subset of hobbyist, people who have an deep interest in traditionally non-mainstream subjects that are often considered childish in nature. Similar to the Nerd, they are usually socially inadequate and brilliant. Unlike the nerd, their brilliance tends to be dedicated to their specific hobby. Usual interests of Geeks fall under Science-Fiction and Fantasy Genres spanning all mediums.
Problem is, I was defining geek by what we like rather than how we like it which appears to be the common theme I found in my journeys.

The definition I've stumbled across, which I agree with, is the second half of my previous definition:

Another aspect of Geeks as defined by The Game Overthinker in his video on continuity found here. the short and paraphrased version is this: "Geeks glean fun from turning something that is already fun into work" such as playing video games competitively, Stop Having Fun Guys, or collecting the entirety of the Marvel universe's comics to "keep the continuity straight".

I, for some reason, always viewed it as a content thing, like we like specific things rather than liking things a certain way. The Game Overthinker basically had it as "Likes things to a degree deeper than common knowledge". He even goes further into the subject here on The Big Picture though to be fair, him using the word nerd bugged me to high heaven. Though Bobbo does bring up excellent points about how the general public enjoys content considered "Geeky", its simply the manner in which it is enjoyed. Geeks like things on a deeper level and while I think Bob's description of "Turning something in a math problem" is going too far, it's basically in that direction of turning something fun into work but still deriving fun from it.

Which means it's not just sci-fi and fantasy fans, anybody can be a geek if they're obsessive enough about their respective hobby. Sports, history, Lego, whatever, I mean this is how experts are born.

That still leaves one little problem. The content-based description. There is still a specified group of somewhat socially awkward individuals that are part of some internet-based conglomerate of anime fans, Japan officianados, Magic: The Gathering players, video gamers, Trekkies, Star Wars fans, nostalgia nuts, cartoon lovers, media junkies, comedian reviewers, overthinkers, sci-fi lovers, fantasy lovers, Webcomic readers and makers, and comic book lovers. I mean these interests are filled with geeks and the fandoms overlap greatly (Which is why I called myself the Omni-Geek, since I loved all and specialized in none.) and they are still considered primarily non-mainstream and seen as childish or unwilling to let go of things that are aimed at kids and young teens.

In short, there's a working definition, but what do you call it?

I mean, it sounds like I'm obsessing but I like seeing things properly labeled in their proper space.


Now my membership at TvTropes suddenly makes sense....

-Good Bye, Good Luck, and Imagination Is Your Greatest Power.
Mousa The 14

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Geek Rant Delay: Writer's Sphere

I was planning on dishing these things out at least once enough, but you know what happened?

Writer's Sphere: Concept patented by Daniel Shive of the El Goonish Shive fare where you have too many ideas instead of not having any.

I am sort of busy with college and I also cannot quite focus on one subject. Over the past couple of months I have been working on drafts for The Barrier OF Entry for Geekdom, it's followup The Old, The New, and The Left Behind, TvTropes, Namco's Tales Series Embargo, and The Green Lantern and I'm already making plans for one aboutthe insanity of the Sonic fandom and the origin and perpetuation of Furries. All of these have been delayed due to me being unable to focus on a single one (And the Green Lantern one kept getting deleted after all of my hard work so I'm discouraged to continue.).

I'm going to try to get better but if anyone can provide inspirational ideas on any of the topics so I can continue on that'd be helpful.

But who the heck actually reads this anyway?

You know what? Nevermind, just.... To those who care, I have more and I'm working on it.