Stealing From the Next Generation

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I can't agree with this. As much as moviebob thinks the camp stuff deserves to have a place, I think the grimdark stuff deserves its place. I don't see how saying 'everything should be darker and edgier!' is any worse than saying 'everything should be tongue-in-cheek and colorful'.

Does no-one remember that Lord of the Rings was made as the "grown-up, hardcore" version of the Hobbit because it was meant for the same audience, who had grown out of riddle-asking?

Things turning hardcore isn't a bad thing in itself. It's just poorly done most of the time!

I agree with this article, to a point. For the most part, things that aren't edgy shouldn't be made edgy just for the sake of it. Sonic the Hedgehog tried it in 2006, look how that turned out.

On the other hand, Batman is better for it. I'll be honest, I loved Adam West's Batman, and I love Batman: The Brave and the Bold, but dark Batman is really something incredible when handled correctly (read, Batman the Animated Series, The Dark Knight, and Arkham Asylum) and I wouldn't want to miss out on that just for the sake of keeping him the way he was in the 1960s.

tl;dr - Making something edgier can work, but there needs to be a good reason, and plenty of thought put into it.

P.S. Thanks

I agree entirely. I'm 18, I had depression for 11 years and dealt with it when I was 17. I'm tired of depression, and I find it amazing that so many people are seeking it out. I'm tired of watching it, I'm tired of talking about it, and I'm tired of reading about it. When it's a legitimately good story, fine. But my childhood was depression, I don't need that illustrated by Kim Possible slitting Draken's throat with her grapple.

Look at some of the Disney movies from ten years ago. Tarzan was as gritty as a kids movie/show/cartoon should get. Pixar's doing a fantastic job. I rewatch the Incredibles every now and then because it's an amazing movie with actual real-world elements to it (Bob and Ellen arguing while going to rescue their kids is fantastic). Iron Man for the same reason, even if his drinking does get a little over the top, it's funny.

I was still in high school when the whole "Zelda? More like Celda!" crap started, and I also bitched at Nintendo.

I was in College when Twilight Princess came out, and I found it nifty, but something...different. A couple years later I realized that my favorite Zelda games were always colorful, and though A Link to the Past had some mature shit go down (they killed a priest, man!) it was still relatively PG. Hell, Land Before Time was PG and it's still sad when Little Foot confuses his shadow for his mom.

So I've reached the point where I think Nintendo should do whatever the fuck they want with Zelda because it's always been for family and meant to encapsulate that feeling of "let's go exploring in the woods!". Let other companies take that concept and "mature it up". Something I fully endorse!

Then Darksiders did just that and everyone called it derivative because they're a bunch of dumb ass fucking hacks.

I love games, but I hate this industry.

MovieBob:
Geeks grow up. The stuff we're geeks FOR doesn't have to - often, that's part of (if not the whole) appeal. The geek genres (scifi, fantasy, etc.) after all, tend to be things you first get into in youth, when the imagination is at its most open.

I couldn't have put it better myself.

SatansBestBuddy:
The funny thing about "mature" content is that it's almost always aimed at a 14 year olds vision of what's mature, making it so there's now two definitions of "mature"

Mature themes are things that can be thought about and discussed, stuff that can have more than one question and more than one answer, and can be talked about between friends and family, all of whom will have a different view on what it means and how much it matters. (for example, the theme of growing old in Up)

Mature content is as shallow and pandering as possible, containing nothing more thought provoking than, "Damn, that's so cool!" or, "Damn, that's hardcore!" and never seeking to be anything more than that. (this is roughly 90% of games right now, and if you don't believe me, try striking up a conversation on the thematic elements of Gears of War)

Fortunately, quality will always find a way to survive, and I have no doubt in my mind that stuff like Shadow of the Colossus or Super Mario Galaxy will have much longer lives than those of Halo and Killzone.

Well said! IBID

Also...
"Shaggy and Scooby aren't strung out on meth, chasing down serial cannibals. I'm thankful for that. I wouldn't wish that for them - at least, not without separately preserving the proper version for the next generation."

That seems to be the way. Offering something older nerd nation might prefer today but still creating new content for the more innocent originals.

How many of us still enjoy the occasional Saturday morning childhood flashback with a bowl of Cap'n Crunch and a few classic 'toons? Be honest, the more pure and clean the better, right? And how much more important today's kids is this?

Plenty of time for grim and grit. That is inevitable, it comes with learning about FICA for the first time. Still remember that first McD's check with horror...

And lastly, that accompanying photo is nightmarish. Those kids may be smiling on the outside but they are screaming in their souls. For shame, Dad!

The problem is all this means is the businesses (comics & games especially) are not getting the customers early enough to then sustain them in the years ahead. This is why I've always been a fan of Nintendo and would like to beat people who complain about its "Kiddyness" over the head with a cricket bat. The majority of gamers who are now over 21 almost certainly started on kid friendly games like Mario and Sonic, but as the umber of "Mature" titles grows, what games will the younger generation have to start on? Nintendo believes that you should make games that children will like because it builds loyalty (remember the old saying "Give me a child until they're 7 and they'll be mine for life") and so they will have repeat customers when the Wii2 (or whatever) comes out.

Didn't you already do this as "The Game Overthinker"?
Not that there's anything bad with wanting to have more people know of your opinion.

Despite the toungue-in-cheek in the article, I grew up with the Ninja Turtles, they were fitting for the time they were created, but I still want to see them use their weapons for more than making pizza! OR rather, I want to see them as they were ment to be, before the saturday morning cartoon, in their original comic

or do you want to keep the turtles looking and talking like THIS? XD

I have to say, the best example I've ever found to describe the current conflict of maturity is DC comics.

The main DC line is obviously aimed at younger buyers, and yet its contents contain a lot of needless violence and imaginery. Heck, just read the latest Titans. Villains for Hire special. It's stupidly violent and gore-ific for no reason whatsoever.

Their sub studio Vertigo however, is meant for more mature publications. And it manages to create more provocative, mature and philosophical stories with much less needless gore.

Oh, and Krypto is awesome. Point.

When in the latest War of the Supermen #4 he was it with a kryptonite dagger and for a second it seemed like the writers might be killing him off, my heart skipped a beat.

666Chaos:

NeutralDrow:
Can't really say I disagree with any of this...although I did find that opening bit hilarious once I figured out what it was leading to.

Elesar:
1) Aiming a story at children is going to restrict your art. Are Wall-E and Up good films? Fuck yes, I loved them. Will they ever have as much brilliance and meaning oh what are my top 3 adult films, say Godfather, Blade Runner or A Clockwork Orange? No, never.

Why not?

I think that should be fairly obvious. On one side you have lighthearted childrens movies and on the other side you have movies meant for adults along that explore that darker and more psychological side of things. With childerns movies it will amost always have a happy ending, the main characters always gets the girl and nobody good dies. Now when your working with all that it kind of limits what you can actually do with a movie. Adult movies though like godfather and clockwork orange dont have those limitations and can work with deepers undertones and themes.

It's only "obvious" if you're coming from the inherent perspective that works intended for children are inherently devoid of meaning, as is anything that isn't a flat-out angstfest. Speaking as an adult fan of Avatar: The Last Airbender, naturally I'm going to call BS on that perspective.

If you cant see why a childrens movie wont ever be as brilliant of meaningfull as clockwork orange then well I kind of feel sorry for you, unless of course you are still fairly young.

Mid-twenties. Also, not a fan of A Clockwork Orange, but a huge fan of Studio Ghibli works.

naughtydoggus:
I think Bob makes some excelent points. It reminds me of my favorite show: Avatar The Last Airbender (in which M. Night Syamalan is making a movie of releasing this July.) The show has some of the best animation I've ever seen, whether it be on Nickelodeon or just American Cartoons in general. All the action is based on real forms of chinese martial arts. Also I can't think of another show that has an even number of female fighters as there is male fighters. They are very beautiful, incredably talented, and they don't have to be complete skanks like so many anime women.

Anyway, I've been trying to convince a lot of my friends in college to watch it so they can get an idea of what the movie will be like. All my lady friends totally are into it, but I have a couple guy friends who will watch it and say "Dude, this show has some great themes, awesome animation, and the fighting with elements is cool. I just wish it were more mature. How come every time someone fights and loses, they just get sent to prison, or banished, and then when someone actually dies, it's something lame like falling off a cliff, or it's off screen."

Now to an extent, I can sort of see where he's comming from. But making Avatar look like every other violent anime out there would take away from the true heart of the show. Avatar is suppose to appeal to both genders of all ages. Not just hardcore mid-20 guys.

I fully agree. Avatar is one of the best cartoon-shows ever made because it has a perfect balance of maturity and childishness that makes it enjoyable to people of all ages, not to mention the great story and characters. If there was graphic killing all the time, it wouldn't be the same, it wouldn't be avatar. Death dosen't have to be graphic to be mature either. Heck, the deaths in fiction that have affected me the most have mostly been in childrens-fiction. If the deaths had been graphic and bloody, I wouldn't have taken them as seriously. As that guy earlier said, there are differences between mature themes and mature content. Avatar e.g has lots of mature themes. It deals with war, loss, death, sacrifice, honor and tons of other themes, without a single drop of blood. Now that's hardcore.

Sometimes "darker" and "mature" things can be good, but not all the time. And some things really shouldn't be changed that way. If Superman killed people, he wouldn't be Superman anymore. Because he just dosen't do that. Now, an Elseworld-story where he did that could be good if done in the right way by a good writer. But changing the "real" Superman into a killer? No. That's why we have series like "The Boys", where all superheroes are murdering assholes, so that the classic heroes doesn't have to do the same. We light for there to be darkness. Also, even if something is dark, it dosen't need to be pitch black. Take a look at e.g Raven from the Teen Titans cartoon. Lighter than her comicbook-counterpart, but still pretty dark for a childrens cartoon-character. And she works great. And what about the BTAS Joker? Imo the best Joker ever, a perfect mix of the silly and funny and the dark and pshycotic.

Speaking of Batman, I love both the dark and serious version and the more funny version, like in The Brave and the Bold (God, I love that show). And I can experience both. Isn't that great?

Btw, speaking of Krypto and Robin. I don't have much knowledge about Krypto, but I wan't to make up for not commenting on your earlier Robin-article. Robin is a great character when used right, which he mostly is. But people have a tendency to ignore the ok and good and just focus on the bad. When people think "Live-action Robin" they mostly think of the terrible one from the mediocre "Forever" or the terrible "& Robin". Or the 60's Robin, who was fine in context, but outside is really damn silly. But they forget the great Robin in several comicbooks and cartoons. Robin is awesome cartoons like B:ATS, Teen Titans and even The Batman. Robin can be great if done right, but so could many other things... Like Deadpool...

Bob, you do realize you just described Pokemon Colosseum right (minus the nattering witch always telling you to only steal tainted Pokemon and the FIESTA)?

On the other hand, Pokemon Special makes a pretty good action series out of the brand name.

But yeah I agree with your overall point.

With respect to Bob, I do somewhat disagree with the premise. Many IP's that get the "mature" reboot (and don't horribly flop) usually need it because the orignal, lighter tone just makes the property feel out of place. In some cases, the darker tone feels more approperiate for some properties. Let's look at the titles that Bob looked at:

Pokemon: This is a game that, for the most part, based on a game mechanic and a copy-paste story line. Sure, they could make a dark, mob-buster plotline, but it wouldn't work (you are 13-18 year-old "trainer" after all). It never really takes itself seriously in the story department because the bubbly atmosphere of the game is part of the game. I even saw the first screen-shots of the new game, and it is virtually unrecognisable in it's new style.

Batman: This IP is, at its heart, an organized crime/detective story, and less about Batman running around in his tights battling a clown (Joker is a violent killer, after all). A darker asthetic simply makes more sense with the material content. Even the cartoons had a darker theme to it. I think after the timeline that started with "Batman: the Animated Series" and ended with "Batman Beyond," the series lost something when it decidedly went for a less-darker asthetic. They barely even mention death, even though the concept is an integral part of the origin of Batman.

Superman: The slow death of Superman in the media has only been amplified by the sudden realization that he is wholely unrepresentatitve of modern times. His near-complete invinsibility and warm feeling worked well in the risiing US of the 1930s and '40s, when sheer might was the way to fight evil (ala the Axis powers). In the '50s and '60s, the American economic Zenith made Superman's might similarly representative of the power of the American economy. But after Vietnam, the turmoil of the late-'60s, '70s and '80s, Oklahoma City, 9/11, Katrina, and the economic collapse, his invincibility feels less hopeful and more the rose-colored memories of days-gone-by. Smallville tried to reboot the franchise, but it is almost unrecognisible as Superman as we (used) to know him.

The Bionic Commando reboot and Street Fighter movie: utter failures because they missed the point of the series' to begin with (platforming and cartoonish fighting, respectively).

Battlestar Gallactica: The "hopeful future" Sci-fi series died with Enterprise. As we move farther in history, we're realizing that the faults in humanity, the basis of many of the species in the first Star Trek series, likely aren't going to be resolved as nicely as we hoped. That's why series like the new BSG and Firefly have become the next wave of mid-far future sci-fi series.

Mario: The franchise was built in the '80s, when the idea of a plumber saving a princess from a oversized turtle was a story line that people would accept. It has rarely strayed beyond the self-realization that that completely absurd story could never be tken seriously (ever more confirmed by the Mario Brothers Movie, which we all agree never existed). So they rolled with it, and stuck with the lighthearted (and, especially in the RPGs, self-flagelating) notion that it was an absurd concept that eventually has become the joke of the series itself. Mario has done the near-impossible and used the combination of nostalgia and broad appeal to maintain a steady and constantly growing following, minus a few trip-ups (Sunshine).

Point is, some things do need to grow up as we loose that innocence of childhood. Batman, Battlestar, and others were fun at the time, but they now feel alien in our world. Hanna-Barbara cartoons feel dated, almost like walking into an elderly person's house. Others, like Mario, Pokemon, and Street don't need to change because we remember those things for different reasons. We'll always look back on those days with rose-tinted glasses, but there is a point where we all sit down and try to watch/play some of those things and feel completely out of place. I don't remember my childhood through Desert Storm or the '92 recession, but now I know they existed while I watched the Sonic Cartoon series and played Super Mario Land on my first grey-brick Game Boy. Don't let that nostalgia deny the maturing of a series.

The Gentleman:

Pokemon: This is a game that, for the most part, based on a game mechanic and a copy-paste story line. Sure, they could make a dark, mob-buster plotline, but it wouldn't work (you are 13-18 year-old "trainer" after all). It never really takes itself seriously in the story department because the bubbly atmosphere of the game is part of the game. I even saw the first screen-shots of the new game, and it is virtually unrecognisable in it's new style.

...I think unrecognizable might be a TAD bit of an overstatement. And there are some serious spinoff titles like some of the manga, or Colosseum, but yeah.

the Mario Brothers Movie, which we all agree never existed

It is one of the greatest "stupid movie" experiences out there, we agree on nothing.

Depends on what it is, I think. The way you describe it, Bob, is that some franchises should never be touched and I disagree. I think some properties out there could use a bit of a more mature revamp. Sometimes it can work if done properly. Some of the premises of those properties had potential, but were brought down due to the audience they were being intended for. Let's take Transformers, for example. Like you said in your ROTF review, it had concepts like alien robots, machine planets and intergalactic civil war. All of it as you said, big idea stuff. But because it was written down to kids, much of that potential went unrealized.

I'm kind of the same way about Thundercats. I was 14 when that show came out, and I remember when it began I was teased with the idea of a huge, epic story inspired by Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings and the legend of King Arthur. It had a huge, interplanetary war as a backdrop with some really cool-looking villains (Mumm-ra himself reminded me of Eddie from Iron Maiden, who I was just getting into at the time). There was great potential for coolness. What I got was....ehhhhh. Formulaic scripts with no sense of story progression, holes in logic big enough to drive a Mack truck through and some of the hokiest voice acting I ever heard at that time. Disappointment just about summed-up my attitude about it. And to me, Thundercats will always be a show that was a missed opportunity and a wasted potential.

Now I keep hearing rumblings of a Thundercats reboot. One of the things I'm hoping for is that they DO make it a tad darker and grittier...or at least take it more seriously than the old cartoon did. Like you have argued about Transformers, you can make a good movie/TV show out of anything regardless of its source material. Thundercats had some Big Ideas, too (i.e. genocide, war, preserving your culture, ancient occult forces, the Campbellian journey of the hero, etc.) Why not take those ideas and run with them to their fullest potential? If they do that, then I can guarantee you that it'd be something I'd watch and not feel embarrassed doing so, like I was when I was 14 watching the old show.

Also it would make more sense for the show to be a bit more realistic in terms of its violence. I mean, come on. All the show's characters carried melee weapons. Wouldn't be more satisfying - not to mention honest - to see them...I dunno...actually HIT someone with them as opposed to doing magic tricks or emanating puffs of smoke?

I'm just using Thundercats as an example here for you to say it is possible to take something that was beloved in childhood and that it could benefit from being made more mature. Like I said in the beginning, it all depends on how it's handled.

I hate to say this, but when I played pokemon as a kid I was expecting it to be pretty much like what movie bob was describing. After all I was also playing mortal kombat at the time and that let me rip my opponents spine out. I was so disappointed at the time that it was basicly just soft toys fighting that I didn't touch it again for about 6 months. Kids a fairly blood thirsty that way.

But serious kids dont want our childhood experiences they want their own.

My kids arn't interested in the Muppet show, transformers or the teen age mutant ninja turtle.

They want their own icons.

Furburt:
I agree wholeheartedly.

For example, the new A-team movie. I can already see a problem, and I haven't seen the film. People die.

Now, I didn't watch the A-team as a kid, I thought it was pretty silly, and I was already onto much harder stuff (I watched The Terminator when I was 5, for gods sake), but one of the central motifs of the whole thing is that they never kill anyone. It's almost a cartoon, it's for kids.

But with this new version, they've made it dark, gritty, and to be honest, it looks boring. Even with Liam Neeson there.

So yeah, let's try and keep our childhoods alive just a little longer.

Dude... Have you seen the trailer? They are parachuting on a freaking tank shooting at fighter jets. (and you know when the jets get shot down the pilots will eject in time) When I was a kid playing with my toys THAT'S the kind of stuff I did. I honestly doubt they are miking casualties of war.

As for the whole grown up geek thing I do like it when a comic or franchise can have a level of maturity without losing it's sense of fun and adventure. MovieBob mentioned Dr. Light as a rapist from Identity Crisis an amazing graphic novel and a perfect example of how to do mature right. The Justice League (to me) always seemed kinda silly but that comic fleshed out the characters quite well and made them real. (without denying 60 odd years of comic history.) It made a very small villain a tangible threat by introducing a crime that logically all married super hero's would feel and merged it with the silliness of the universe. It made it more real and gave it a depth that The Dark Knight Returns lacked. It's all a matter of personal taste I suppose. But I think that key difference between ADULT and MATURE is knowing which button to push when.

Interesting article. While I certainly don't disagree that not everything needs to be gritty and "mature," I do think there is something to be said about wanting our games to grow with us. As an example, I'm really not sure if I could ever truly enjoy another Zelda game again. It's not because I want to see Link slashing an Octorok to pieces with blood and guts everywhere, it's because there are aspects to the series that do very much appeal to me but it feels like the game hasn't grown or progressed at all. The series may not need to "grow up" (and well it shouldn't) but I can't help feeling it needs to expand and evolve.

Bravo, MovieBob, bravo.

You see people make the assumption that you can only have grim and gritty or rainbow bright, that's not true, personally my problem with stuff I enjoyed as a kid now that I'm an adult is I can see glaring plot-holes a mile-wide and sloppy dialogue splattered with pop culture references that I once thought were funny.

You can stay true to a theme while actually upgrading the franchise with decent writing and story telling.

Furburt:
I agree wholeheartedly.

For example, the new A-team movie. I can already see a problem, and I haven't seen the film. People die.

Now, I didn't watch the A-team as a kid, I thought it was pretty silly, and I was already onto much harder stuff (I watched The Terminator when I was 5, for gods sake), but one of the central motifs of the whole thing is that they never kill anyone. It's almost a cartoon, it's for kids.

I think your missing the point. The A-team movie isn't looking to create a dark, and grim movie about a brutal spec-ops team. Its still maintaining the lightness of tone and the fun of the original series. Seriously dude, think before you compare. (P.S. nobody is impressed that you saw an R-rated movie at the age of five.)

Anyway, as to the rest of it, let me state that I am only just now to be considered an adult. This means that I have grown up as the minority in geek terms, by enjoying things that were meant for my age. I for one think the greater problem is glorifying such grim, gritty and angst-filled products and thus making them more interesting to younger kids. My friends refused to buy the DS because it came from Nintendo, the video game makers who didn't have M-rated games. Other friends read Halo novels rather than stuff like Redwall (a book series that is much better even if it features woodland creatures). Its sad really that young nerds are so impressionable and their most common impression is that "blood is cool." Its even scarier when you think that if this becomes their basis, what will they look to when they have nostalgia. We have such things as Mario, Link and other colorful fun, they'll just have more Halo or God of War.

SatansBestBuddy:
Fortunately, quality will always find a way to survive, and I have no doubt in my mind that stuff like Shadow of the Colossus or Super Mario Galaxy will have much longer lives than those of Halo and Killzone.

Well said, you who happens to be friends with the First Fallen.

tkioz:
You see people make the assumption that you can only have grim and gritty or rainbow bright, that's not true, personally my problem with stuff I enjoyed as a kid now that I'm an adult is I can see glaring plot-holes a mile-wide and sloppy dialogue splattered with pop culture references that I once thought were funny.

You can stay true to a theme while actually upgrading the franchise with decent writing and story telling.

Yeah, dichotomies tend to be misused in that way.

Decent writing fits any kind of level in the Sugar/Sour spectrum.

I would like to watch the things I grew up with grow, and yes I would like to see them eventually die. I would like to see today's kids get their own heroes like Airbender, Xiao Lin Showdown, Pokemon, and others, and they too would like those things to grow with them, as they watch the kids they babysat get their own heroes which in turn grow, evolve, and die.

Currently geek fiction is in a constant state of purgatory, how many times does Lex Luthor have to try to take over the world, how many times does Link have to save Hyrule, how often does James Bond have to escape the overly elaborate and exotic death? Thank god for the Danial Craig version that made the series real and new and relevant again, thank god for J.J. Abrams making new shows like "Lost" and "Alias", and for Joss Whedon trying to make new Sci-Fi universes and fantasy genres with "Firefly" and "Buffy" inventing the Sci-Fi western political thriller and the comedic superhero supernatural detective genre (cause Twilight, Dresden Files, Laura K. Hamilton, P.C. Cast all owe a debt to him in that regard).

Thank god for the shit that is Twilight, do you all realize that that one book series brought more women into the geek fold than anything else made in the last... EVER! They will move past that series into better stuff, they will join Vampire and World of Darkness roleplaying games, they will be our girlfriends when the supply of Manga fan girls runs out.

We need new things! And yeah, I like Iron Man, and yeah I like Spiderman, but since they were never allowed to grow up we see them make the same mistakes they always do, the Marvel Universe will never get better, it will never get more diverse, it will never die, instead it will slowly turn into a complete zombie as the cultural icons like Spiderman pull readers into limbo with them, and no new characters will ever be allowed to find readers, and will never be able to grow and change.

I liked that you started this off with Pokemon, understanding that my generation of 16, 17, 18 year olds grew up with it. And I agree that making Pokemon (and Mario, Yoshi's Island for the SNES was one of the first games I ever played at like 5 years old) darker and more "gritty" or whatever would probably suck what I love about it in the first place out. I think that the childish games with old characters (and new IPs are always welcome) and the dark games for mature audiences can live side by side, I can think of numerous titles from both factions that I greatly enjoy.

Onyx Oblivion:
Wallet chains were cool at one point?

REALLY?

I just can't believe such a thing.

You have no idea :D. I was really into them myself, never got to have one though.

MovieBob:
In the broad strokes, Mario hasn't changed much since I first met him in 1986. What if he had? What if his face was just a bit more grim, Bowser just a bit more threatening, Princess Peach a bit more affectionate?

I don't know. I've seen what happens when a children's icon doesn't grow, and is protected by its creators from ever maturing so that it can stay perpetually accessible to the next generation's children: Disney.

I still wouldnt mind seeing a zelda game that was a bit darker and had a bit more reason for gannon being a bad guy instead of just happening to be the last boss, they never seem to say what hes done thats so bad besides occasionally kidnap zelda or usurp power, I mean when he usurps its not like you see heads on pikes all over the place, in fact its usually pretty much the same place. Altho mario will always be perfect with a lighter tone.... altho seeing bowers try and take peach out on a date could be more amusing then seeing him constantly kidnap her

Did we REALLY, REALLY needed to hear how Bob is trashing the hardcore fanbase AGAIN!? You know, because he doesn't whine about it every single time the opportunity present itself? Seriously Bob, isn't there anything else in the world you can talk about, don't you think that you fans are already tired of hearing this again and again?

I was going to write a critique, but honestly, some people have already done a better job then I could have.

Ravek:
I can't agree with this. As much as moviebob thinks the camp stuff deserves to have a place, I think the grimdark stuff deserves its place. I don't see how saying 'everything should be darker and edgier!' is any worse than saying 'everything should be tongue-in-cheek and colorful'.

I have to agree with this. Every piece has it's place, whether we like it or not. What makes a grim version of Pokemon any less a part of the series then a happiness and rainbows Pokemon?(not that you mentioned Pokemon, is just the best example I can think of)

In fact, who is to say the whole Pokemon world isn't something darker in itself?

Elesar:
1) Aiming a story at children is going to restrict your art. Are Wall-E and Up good films? Fuck yes, I loved them. Will they ever have as much brilliance and meaning oh what are my top 3 adult films, say Godfather, Blade Runner or A Clockwork Orange? No, never. Not their fault, but simply aiming it at a younger audience means you have to sacrifice some artistic merit. Want an example from the same director? Look at the difference in quality between Ponyo and Princess Mononoke. (And I liked Ponyo before I hear it).

2) You have to recognize what are already kind of adult themes. People assume that comics are inherently for kids, and that's not ENTIRELY wrong. But it's not entirely correct either. Batman, for example, is not an inherently childish concept. It is, when you strip away a lot of our assumptions, about a 10 year old kid who watches his parents die and, again boiling away a lot of stuff, goes completely off the wall crazy, dresses up like a Bat and starts punching criminals. Is it silly? Yes. Are there already adult concepts and stories working their way in? Oh yes.

Just some food for thought.

Those themes will be there anyway. You don't have to focus on them to make a good production. What happens when Mega Man dies? Well, Dr. Light probably rebuilds him. I could say that Roll's a pacifist because she sees her brother die all the time and there's no definitive proof otherwise. Do the endless number of enemy robots in every stage have sentience, or even intelligence? Probably. Mega Man is a child soldier in war, and he's taken countless lives on the battlefield, just because of a bitter rivalry between his father and an old colleague. It's not until the X series that these themes are really discussed, but they were always present.

While we're talking about robots: Wall-E deals with loneliness, extinction, free will, totalitarianism, death, mental instability and illness, racism, greed, regret, nuclear war, and what it means to be alive. It just doesn't shove its themes in your face to be edgy. And don't try to tell me A Clockwork Orange wasn't trying to be edgy for edgy's sake. That was part of its point.

It's your responsibility to reach your own conclusion about these things. If you refuse to do that, you have some growing up to do.

Traun:
Did we REALLY, REALLY needed to hear how Bob is trashing the hardcore fanbase AGAIN!?

No, you didn't. You could have closed the article. It's that easy.

I thought this article was either about Star Trek or Obama's administration.

Agreed, although it's not to say child-aimed movies don't touch on that kind of thing regardless. Watch Fox and the Hound, you'll know what I mean.

Little off-topic, but I'm noticing people praising avatar for its ability to mesh these two, and I'm confused. To me that show has always ruined what potential it had in terms of animation and characters when it became really juvenile. For example, I remember an episode where they had to go to a secret library in order to find the fire nation's secret. Long story short, they ticked off the guardian and got into a scuffle, culminating in the guy with a boomerang hitting it from behind. His victory cry? "That's Saka style, learn it!"

I cringed.

Or when they met an old earth-bending king, who turned out to be ripped instead of a vulnerable old man. He was a bit crazy, and the jokes they tried to make him do are just...awful. He held the group hostage, with the girl shouting "let us leave!". The old loon picks up a piece of cabbage and says "Lettuce leaf?". Cue bumbling music, and my -pain-.

To me it totally breaks any sense of immersion of believability when they do something that would make even a drunk D&D party look more epic in its narrative. I admit that creating a believable world and characters might not be the intended goal, or I'm just too in love with seriousness, but is there something I'm not getting here?

Nateman742:

Traun:
Did we REALLY, REALLY needed to hear how Bob is trashing the hardcore fanbase AGAIN!?

No, you didn't. You could have closed the article. It's that easy.

I agree with Moviebob in many cases and in general I enjoy his shows, which is why I read and sometimes comment on his works. Also the fact that I can "close the article" is not an excuse. The same could be said for half the shit out there, it doesn't justify it's existence.

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