There Might Be Spoilers

In a recent post, John Scalzi discusses whether there should be a statute of limitations on spoilers:

If there is, in fact, a spoiler statute of limitations, the question then becomes, well, how long is it? I throw that question open to the crowd, but here are my suggestions:

Television: One week (because it’s generally episodic, and that’s how long you have until the next episode)

Movies: One year (time enough for everyone to see it in the theaters, on DVD and on cable)

Books: Five years (because books don’t reach nearly as many people at one time)

Personally, I absolutely think there should be a point in time where it’s okay to discuss major plot points in a story without having someone scream at you for spoiling it. I personally don’t seek out spoilers, but I don’t think that reading them or coming across them accidentally necessarily ruins my actual enjoyment of the resulting product.

For example, well before I ever saw No Country for Old Men, even without having read the book, I knew perfectly well what happens to one of the major characters near the end of the movie. This didn’t ruin my enjoyment of the movie at all, and in fact it was one of my most favorite movies of the year.

Ladies and gentlemen... I've traveled over half our state to be here tonight. I couldn't get away sooner because my new well was coming in at Coyote Hills and I had to see about it.Same goes for There Will Be Blood. Several of the movie blogs I read were talking about the infamous “I drink your milkshake” scene, and I ended up reading about the basic details of it before I saw the movie. That doesn’t change the fact, however, that nothing could prepare me for the sheer impact of that scene when I saw it in the film. Taking out of context it makes it sound absurd and laughable, but when you’ve followed the characters through the emotional journey that brings you that point, it makes a kind of mad sense.

I don’t think movies are the main source of spoiler accusations, however. With the advent of TV On DVD, more and more people are able to catch up on entire seasons of television shows by renting them or buying them. Within my group of friends, there are a lot of folks who only watch TV on DVD, and don’t even pay for cable. However, along with this trend has come a growing belief that the statute of limitations on spoilers never expires, even if you’re discussing a show that has been off the air for years.

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She’s Dead… Wrapped in Plastic

Okay, this is some pretty exciting news from TVShowsOnDVD.com:

Twin Peaks: Definitive Gold Box Edition

THE GROUNDBREAKING SERIES THAT ALTERED THE TELEVISION LANDSCAPE AT LONG LAST ARRIVES IN A COMPLETE DVD SET

TWIN PEAKS™ THE DEFINITIVE GOLD BOX EDITION

Loaded with All-New Exclusive Special Features and Beloved Vintage Materials, All 29 Newly Remastered Episodes, Plus Two Versions of the Original Pilot, This 10-Disc Collection Debuts October 30, 2007

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. – The highly-anticipated Definitive Gold Box Edition of the series that became one of television’s most acclaimed events finally arrives – with all 29 episodes plus both the original and European versions of the pilot – on October 30, 2007 from CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Entertainment. Considered both technically and artistically revolutionary when it debuted, TWIN PEAKS™ garnered 18 Emmy nominations over the course of its two-season run with its cast of memorable characters, stunning cinematography and intriguing plot. Co-creators David Lynch and Mark Frost and a large number of the cast and crew have returned to participate in this extraordinary new collection.

(read the full article…)

The cover art is a bit funky, but I don’t really mind. This is the first time the entire series has ever been available at once (legitimately), and I could see myself buying it. The original first season DVD is out of print, and didn’t even include the pilot movie due to funky rights issues. The only version of that movie available in America is an edited version that wraps up the whole story in a standalone format. I’ve managed to see the proper pilot movie only because I Luv Video rents import/bootleg/burned DVDs.

“I’m Doug and I’m out of… here.”

How awesome is it that The State is finally coming to DVD, 14(!) years later?

Everybody Loves Hypnotoad

There are some pretty excellent interviews with the makers of Futurama popping up various places. I definitely cannot wait for 2008 to roll around so I can see how Futurama has grown and changed since it went off the air on Fox in 2003(!). Here are some choice bits from an interview with Matt Groening:

Our goal in the beginning was… We know that it looks like a silly cartoon show, with a cyclops girl and a lobster alien and all that stuff. But that we were actually going to have, underlying the goofy comedy, was going to be legitimate literary science fiction concepts.

…and:

Even though he’s still very involved with The Simpsons his “day job” is creating the sixteen new episodes of Futurama that will be airing on Comedy Central starting in 2008.

There’s also a pretty excellent interview with David X. Cohen from Wizard magazine. Cohen gets a little bit more into the details:

When our story resumes, two long years have passed. As for the Fry/Leela relationship, we will be visiting that subject right away, so I refuse to tell you where it will lead on the grounds that I want you to buy the DVD.

And, most tantalizing, the interview ends with the following snippet:

…we are looking into producing a full 22-minute episode of Everybody Loves Hypnotoad for the DVD release. I am serious.

How exciting is that? Honestly, though, I’m mostly just amazed that Futurama can come back to air five years after it was originally cancelled. Kind of makes me wish someone had made Firefly as a cartoon

In any case, watch more Futurama and live in anticipation of 2008! I sure know I will!

Sincerely,
Your Master
The Hypnotoad

You Set the Fire in Me

After much waffling, I finally buckled under and bought myself a new computer. I’ve needed one for a while now – my poor old G3 iMac has been pushed far past its natural limit, and needs to be put out to pasture somewhere where noone will try to make it play full-screen video.

I was having a hard time deciding between a laptop and a new iMac, but my dad made the point that if all I wanted a laptop for, I should just get something cheap, and that if I was looking to actually upgrade my computer, the iMac was a more sensible choice. This is why it’s good to keep your parents around. Sometimes they help you make decisions.

Anyways, as soon as I got back to work on Monday I ordered the computer (20″ screen, 2.1 Ghz G5 processor… drool…) Right now the Apple website says that it should ship on Friday, so I should be able to get my grubby hands on it sometime early next week. I’m definitely looking forward to it.

Other than that, things are pretty standard. Although I do have to work this week, I’m getting paid holiday pay plus overtime for every hour I work, and we’ve gone home early both days so far – we probably won’t stay any later than 3pm all week, which is definitely nice. This is also the last week I’ll have to be on the phone all day, so that’s nice.

Tonight I sat and watched Groundhog Day on DVD. Such a good movie, and more profound than you might expect, considering it’s the sort of movie that used to get played incessantly on various cable channels.

Alright, I’m tired. I’d like to try and read a little bit before I sleep, but it probably won’t happen. Oh well… I do hope, however, that I can finish at least one of the books I’m currently reading before the end of 2005. That’d be nice… (especially since one of them, The Wizard, is due back at the library on the 3rd.)

No Going Back Now!

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In preparation for the coming of “The Chosen Collection”:http://www.tvshowsondvd.com/newsitem.cfm?NewsID=4018 (sorry, couldn’t resist), I’ve decided to go ahead and sell my currently owned box sets of Buffy seasons 5 thru 7. I listed them all around 8 o’clock tonight… and Season 7 is already sold. (It makes me feel better that I made back almost what it cost me, although somehow I still feel guilty for selling the sets… it feels like _treason_!)

The best offer Half Price Books could have given me was *$9* per season, which is just absolutely offensive. At least on Amazon, I can set my own price and keep most of the money.

The way I’ve got it figured, if I can get back at least $20 a pop for 5, 6, and 7 each, they’ve paid for their part of the complete box set. If I’m lucky, I’ll get a little more than $20 a pop and they’ll pay for a bit of the rest of the set – the ideal situation is me coming away between $25 and $30 for each set.

2005 has definitely been the year of my TV obsession. First I got inexorably caught up in watching the entire runs of two great sci-fi TV shows, pretty much back-to-back (Farscape, then Buffy), and then the whole thing snowballed, and I found myself juggling any number of shows at the same time. At the moment it feels like I’m following as many shows on DVD as there are currently on-air, but it’s more likely that the on-air shows are starting to tip the balance – especially when I watch enough DVD to catch up to the currently airing episodes, like I’ve done with The O.C.

Most of my dvd purchases as of late have been TV box sets, as well… the three Buffy sets, then The Office, Firefly, The OC, Nip/Tuck Season Two, Lost… (I got an awesome deal on Lost, which is on sale at Target.) Man… I can already see what my new year’s resolution for 2006 should be – watch/buy less TV!

life after darth

There’s a pretty interesting interview/article about George Lucas in the newest Wired: Life After Darth

I’m kind of looking forward to what he might come up with next, even though he did ruin Star Wars. Here’s a quote from the article:

Now Lucas says he is determined to leverage that security to make the kinds of movies that no one expects from him. He claims to have a stack of ideas piling up on his desk for “highly abstract, esoteric” films even more daring than his 1971 debut, THX 1138. An expansion of one of Lucas’ student projects at the University of Southern California, THX anticipated the cyberpunk aesthetic of William Gibson’s Neuromancer and Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner, depicting a pharmaceutically numbed society of the future under constant video surveillance. After Lucas spent a year digitally restoring the film for its theatrical rerelease and DVD debut in 2004, a longtime employee observed: “I’ve never seen George so excited by any other project at the company.” Lucas says the restored THX was just a preview of even edgier films to come that he will finance and direct himself.

two things.

1. fuck you, netflix – i just watched the huuuuuugest cliffhanger in the middle of farscape season four, and i was about to pop in the next disc to resolve my extremely agitated imagination, when what do i behold but the biggest goddamn crack straight through the entire DVD! aaaaaaaaargh!

must. have. more. farscape! gnaaaargrgghhgrhghg!

2. oh sweet mother of god, this looks gorgeous: “Serenity – Full Trailer”:http://www.apple.com/trailers/universal/serenity/ – if you know what’s good for you, you read that and got pretty damn excited…

Chronicles of Riddick

I’m going to buy the Chronicles of Riddick DVD when it comes out, both because i really loved the movie (yes, loved) and because I want to see sequels, a possibility which hasn’t been completely ruled out yet:

The mythology of the Riddick universe will also be further fleshed out, should sequels be commissioned. And whether that happens or not would seem to depend entirely on how well the DVD sells in the next few weeks.

Sky Captain…

…Bored me to tears, unfortunately. I was pretty damn disappointed with this movie. It wasn’t bad, it was just uninteresting. About half an hour in I wished pretty seriously that I was using my time in some other fashion.

Something that does make me happy, though, is that I bought this today:

Only $14 from Waterloo. I haven’t had a chance to watch more than about two or three of the videos, but I figured buying the DVD was a better solution than just buying cds that I already have on my iPod – this way, I support Sonic Youth, but get something new out of the deal. I really want to get a turntable so I can feel justified buying records (again, the same theory; support the band, but get something new out of the deal).

I was sorely tempted by the newest Sonic Youth and Mission of Burma albums (speaking of Mission of Burma, OnOffOn is actually really good… I just hadn’t given it a chance until recently), both available on vinyl, but I knew that such a purchase would be pointless because I wouldn’t get to enjoy them for the forseeable future, and I already have a good handful of records I can’t listen to.

Sleepless Night

After I got home from work, I fell asleep until midnight. Accordingly, I have been awake ever since. To fill up my time, I watched the first three episodes of Nip/Tuck, which was fucking great. I really enjoy watching television shows on DVD, especially the really good ones. If you find yourself a well-made TV show on DVD, it’s like watching the coolest, most involving movie, simply because you have so much time to get caught up in the characters and the evolving plotlines…