Jimquisition: Too Cool To Be Cool

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This entire video may as well have been titled: 'Why Jim doesn't understand irony.'

His whole 'persona' is that of an pompous, self-important games journalist, the irony apparently being that he isn't in fact any of those things. Except that he is. Just because you overplay your assumed persona doesn't make it 'ironic', it makes it painful. The irony would be to engage the audience as a know-nothing self-important egotist, and in delivering the act present an argument that is, in fact, the opposite of that.

The very fact that he calls Duke Nukem out on his apparent lack of self-aware irony is ridink-dam-donkulous. Duke Nukem succeeds on the levels of irony that Jim is blatently unaware of. Duke is over the top, crazily machismo and, in fact, worshiped and adored. He is a caricature of the action hero superimposed upon the surface of a nearby planet! The pure hyperbole which is his only recongizable characteristic forces the player to attempt to mediate this bent perspective purely to keep two feet in that universes ground.

When the whole world is screaming at how fantastic Duke is, himself included, and you can actually see he is an overindulgent hero it forces the realisation of: Man this guy is actually a douche, into your perspective. Otherwise you could not sanely inhabit the world you are introduced to.

Duke doesn't need to be self-aware himself, nor does anybody in the game world, they are equally ridiculous. The makers, however, are blatently aware of this oddity, and push it to its extreme. The player plays the game to be Duke, to fill the role of ultimate action hero, but in portraying this vision to its maximum potentional, we realise that its not exactly all its cracked up to be. The dissonance between the thrill of the action and the dispelling persona of Duke creates the whole frickin' experience.

Jim, on the other hand, bloats his performance while attempting to be self-deprecating and insightful. I don't think he is too full of himself, actually. But I don't think he deprecates himself either. It smacks of a inferiority complex more than anything, pushing a big image onto people because you are dimly aware of your shortcomings, but instead of addressing them, you put on a facade. As for insight, well, read the above.

Great episode, and, really, can people stop complaining about the satire of his jokes when they don't get it, and, if they think about it and listen, they'll realise he makes some interesting points.
I definitly think Sonic should take a step back and think about his character; in the originals, he was just a small little hedgehog trying to get through the stage, and yet I prefer him to someone who has 15+ years characterisation.
I'm not sure I agree about Duke. I'll admit I haven't played any of the Duke games, so I may be talking out of my arse here, but the impression I get of him is that, when he was in his prime, he was intended to be a reflection of Hollywood action heroes (hey, look at the insight of this guy), which came about after the first one, where he was a blank slate, so they probably chose to take up that projection of the action hero and make him into the most over-the-top action hero that when he makes bad jokes in that voice of his, you can't help but laugh at the stupidity of it, case in point 'I'm an equal opportunity ass-kicker'.
I can make one example of a similar figure, Arnold Schwarzenegger: every time I see him in one of his films, I can't help but laugh at his accent combined with cheesy one-liners, yet, despite the fact that we can't take the role that seriously or believe that such a character could exist, we love the guy, and Terminator 2 will forever be among one of my favourite films.
The universal praising of Duke in the world he lives in, plus the fact that he's basically an arrogant douche, certainly makes him unbelievable, but he's fun to be observe, and I look forward to when DNF finally comes out. I think that parody of generic action heroes in films has come full circle to be a parody of the new generic action heroes in games.

... Ok, is The Escapist just trolling us now? Why is this show still around?

SvenBTB:
... Ok, is The Escapist just trolling us now? Why is this show still around?

Because every episode a bunch of people like yourself show it attention and act like you hate it.

I don't like Fox News, yet I don't go around raging about how much crap they are. I understand intrinsically that they are crap and leave it at that.

You however, by being here, validate him.

I don't mind him, he has some good commentary in between the dry spots. The most bothersome part about it is the episodic return of people bantering about him.

It's like folks who star at car accidents and act mortified but never look away and never refrain from slowing down to see a new accident in the future.

best episode yet, I actually found it rather well thought out, and actually made good sense, great job

I think people are focusing too much on Duke's facet as an action hero parody (which he undoubtly is) and forgetting a bit the main point of his characterization: to give players a lens to see the game with, or a script to approach the game.

Back when Duke Nukem 3D came out most FPS went for the blank slate approach. Even when the character had a fleshed out story that was being progressed in the game, the actual behaviour of the character in the gameplay was left for the player to fill with their minds. Was the space marine in Doom a scared-to-death guy struggling for survival? Was Kyle Katarn in SW:Dark Forces a badass that went guns blazing while cracking jokes? Or Vice-Versa? You had freedom to decide this as you played. The characters' experience was yours.

Duke Nukem traded this in for an EXTREMELY strong characterization. There wasn't nearly as much room for projection or immersion. The game made it clearly from the get go the attitude you were expected to experience the gameplay. You were no longer yourself in the hero's shoes, you were the hero and if you didn't want to rip someone's head and shit down their neck you were in the wrong game. Back then this was a breath of air in FPS and made the difference.

So talking about character development in Duke Nukem doesn't make that much sense to me. He's not a story to be told or a concept to explore or expand, he's a lens to see the game through.

Looking through the comments here and on facebook it's amazing how much hate that show gets, just the same with MovieBob lately. I actually quite enjoy the show, I mean I think he makes some interesting points and I just like his absolutely overplayed love for himself. Jim, I thank god for you :D :D :D

This episode and the sexism one were also just pretty good.

Dear Jim,

I watched the first two videos of yours and wasn't really feeling it, while I found your words mostly interesting there was to much staring at you and not enough shots of games and such.

Watched some more recent episodes and that has been fixed a bit, less staring at you talking and more looking at things that are interesting, though I still think the show could do with some manner of consistent animated representation ala Extra/Zero.

P.S. I always knew you were "in character" as a giant self loving D bag, but even characters have to be lovable, i.e. we have to love to hate, not simply hate. And I think its gotten better. We'll see if you can turn the show into a good escapist staple yet.

ProjectTrinity:

It never looks good when you ignore direct questions pertaining to your use of the word "pretentious" and why you think so. I also noticed you were defending Fox News on the "Games as art" thread?

I ask, because I believe it will relate to your overall posts regarding EC...and your ability to (properly) address criticism on your logic.

Yes, I had the audacity to defend Fox News, and now my credibility is forever tainted! Oh, woe is me, I should hang my head in shame, disappear, relocate, and change my name. Shame on anyone who defends Fox News!

Hey Jim, given that your commentary benefits in no way whatsoever from your "Persona" why don't you drop the act and stand on your own two feet. Or is it that you think that this overbaked, egotistical facade is more engaging than your actual personality? I'm guessing the latter.

Just like it's been stated before, it's a toss up which is more pathetic. People taking this poor excuse for hyperbole (which is the Jimquisition) seriously, or your repeated need to explain it to people, like that's going to make it any better. Jim Says: "Oh if only they knew I was acting like a self important jerk, they'd really get me, and love and respect my deep, expansive retrospect on all things video games."

Yeah, do you see? So the important thing to take away from this, is you can't try to validate your shitty little show by beating some people over the head with the "Truth stick" tearing down this little 4th wall you actually need to even make your schtick work, then continue on with said schtick. It just ruins everything worse than it was already ruined.

Still, i've watched all these videos to date, and the only reason I felt the need to post, is I found it a little offensive that you figured a public brow beating of those that couldn't see through your bland, incomprehensible humor, was a worthwhile endeavor.

Here's a thought... Maybe you just suck at this. and you don't like it because people say so?

Mr. Sterling, who's own Too Cool to Be Cool Persona is so unironic and not self-deprecating enough to be understood as a parody, calls out other satirical fictional characters for doing the same.

Pot. Kettle...

Though that could be what he's going for here, that we'd suffer the same reaction to this to someone that doesn't "get Duke".

We need to go deeper.

The mind.

It boggles.

(I don't like this Jim Sterling persona..."because of REASONS!"*)

*see last episode

These keep getting better :) He makes some very valid points...

Here's a thought; I realise Duke is a complete chauvinist (in terms of sex and race) and the game's story would probably improve if it was played skewed; I mean, hell, we live in the 21st century now; that kind of sexist attitude OUGHT to be a thing of the past. But I know plenty of sexist, chauvinistic guys, and unfortunately they all seem to get what they want from women all the time. Art imitating life perhaps?

I still think Yahtzee's idea would have made for a better story... Duke is a down-and-out bum, still desperately clinging to the memories of his glory days, and has to readjust to modern society while clearing up pig cops and alien monstrosities...

I'm still going to buy it though >>

Ace IV:

ProjectTrinity:

It never looks good when you ignore direct questions pertaining to your use of the word "pretentious" and why you think so. I also noticed you were defending Fox News on the "Games as art" thread?

I ask, because I believe it will relate to your overall posts regarding EC...and your ability to (properly) address criticism on your logic.

Yes, I had the audacity to defend Fox News, and now my credibility is forever tainted! Oh, woe is me, I should hang my head in shame, disappear, relocate, and change my name. Shame on anyone who defends Fox News!

Actually, it's your ever-so excellent ability to properly respond to people desiring logical explanations on top of the Fox News defending (a station that happens to do the same thing) that makes it easy to dismiss your credibility. It doesn't matter that you defended Fox News, but it does matter that you avoid the main issues addressed to you. It gives the impression that much like Fox, you're talking for the sake of talking rather than trying to learn or understand anything - and that is reason enough for me and anyone else not to take you seriously. You also proved this by sticking to your original statement that the first poster was saying something negative about Extra Credits when it's clear to everyone that he was excluding them from his criticism. So yes, if I am right about you: Woe.Is.You.

This is hilarious. This series is hilarious. Maybe the first few weren't so good, but he seems to be listening to comments (even if he's ignoring them) and his last few episodes have been awesome. I like him as a break to extra credits and the escapist magazine when it comes to talking about games because he's so arrogant and self righteous it's hilarious!

ProjectTrinity:

Actually, it's your ever-so excellent ability to properly respond to people desiring logical explanations on top of the Fox News defending (a station that happens to do the same thing) that makes it easy to dismiss your credibility.

If you think I'm not worth talking to, since everything I say is garbage, then piss off. Otherwise, you're still responding, so obviously you care what I have to say.

Defending Fox News doesn't undermine my credibility. That's guilt by association and I don't think you're so stupid as to not realize that that makes no sense.

ProjectTrinity:
It gives the impression that much like Fox, you're talking for the sake of talking rather than trying to learn or understand anything

Sorry, what were you talking about again? I lost track after you went off ranting about how I have no credibility.

ProjectTrinity:
and that is reason enough for me and anyone else not to take you seriously.

Then why. are you. responding. to me.

I think you're trying to have your cake and eat it too, ranting how everything I say is worthless, but still valid enough to get your attention. Yawn. Are we done here?

I quite enjoyed this episode, it's great to see actual changes and improvements with the overall presentation. What's even better is that you took the time to read through the comments and take what you thought would work, and implemented it.

The only thing I'm finding distracting is the difference in audio quality when speaking on and off screen. Although it's not a huge deal, it's something that distracts me from what's actually being said.

Ace IV:

ProjectTrinity:

Actually, it's your ever-so excellent ability to properly respond to people desiring logical explanations on top of the Fox News defending (a station that happens to do the same thing) that makes it easy to dismiss your credibility.

If you think I'm not worth talking to, since everything I say is garbage, then piss off. Otherwise, you're still responding, so obviously you care what I have to say.

Defending Fox News doesn't undermine my credibility. That's guilt by association and I don't think you're so stupid as to not realize that that makes no sense.

ProjectTrinity:
It gives the impression that much like Fox, you're talking for the sake of talking rather than trying to learn or understand anything

Sorry, what were you talking about again? I lost track after you went off ranting about how I have no credibility.

ProjectTrinity:
and that is reason enough for me and anyone else not to take you seriously.

Then why. are you. responding. to me.

I think you're trying to have your cake and eat it too, ranting how everything I say is worthless, but still valid enough to get your attention. Yawn. Are we done here?

Oh dear, I think you're putting my personality on the same area as yours...it's not. I have enough respect for people in general to answer when spoken to and...dare I say, answer as much as I can when asked? Now, reread my comments and quote me on where I said what you said was absolutely worthless. Sure I question your credibility, for WAY more than Fox News (As I told you), but that doesn't mean I'll ignore everything you say. Being rude is not my area of expertise. And no, dismissing your opinion is not the same as finding it completely worthless.

However, I'm still waiting for your answer on how Extra Credits is pretentious when they don't even fit the literal definition: "Attempting to impress by affecting greater importance, talent, culture, etc., than is actually possessed." As far as I and the majority of us think, the knowledge they speak is more than fine and they actually possess it - hence the following.

I also asked you if it was because they were talking about how Fox News was treating a game designer during a debate that sparked your dislike for them (further).

Once they went unaddressed, twice, I questioned your credibility. So in short: I don't find what you say worthless, I want the answers. I'm a truth seeker who isn't a fan of running. You avoiding several posts (not just from me, by the way) clues in that you want your opinion while closing your ears to anything that may change that opinion. I want to know if that's the case with you before I permanently decide that talking to you wouldn't broaden my ways of thinking at all.

ProjectTrinity:

Once they went unaddressed, twice, I questioned your credibility. So in short: I don't find what you say worthless, I want the answers. I'm a truth seeker who isn't a fan of running.

Yes, you are so awesome and I am so shit. You are an enlightened truth-seeker and I am a shameful Fox News-defending charlatan. I think we're done here.

I don't even remember what you originally questioned me over, and to be honest IDGAF anymore. Bye.

I actually liked this one, after he praticually told me to not only fuck off but he was not TRYING to be serious made me want to watch him, and I actually laughed. Apparently I'm one of those people who can't tell if someone was trying to be serious or be straight up silly, damn your poke face jim, damn it. I like this series, never looking at any of the other videos before this one in fear of seeing his shitty side again, but I do think he would be awesome to continue on here.

SvenBTB:
... Ok, is The Escapist just trolling us now? Why is this show still around?

Thats what I thought way back in the olden videos once he was put on here after the second week, but the only reason is because he is funny in the whole, "I'm a overconfident shit, but I am also funny." It took me a while to understand the whole irony twist and everything. OR I've been blinded by being up too late. OR THE SECOND OPTION IS that the escapist is doing it as a way to troll like Valve. And don't say valve isn't above trolling. Or I'm thinking of blizzard, or something, I'll probably edit this with the correct one soon.

Oh I understand your persona is ironic, I think we all do. The thing is, we just don't like your fucking personality.

And no, it isn't in that "Yeah he's a dick, but that's just who he is" kind of pride way. We just don't fucking like you. Your series is bad. But it's getting better.

Truth be told, I kind of liked this one. It was interesting and I think the formula of less camera on you, and more with the voiceover running across game clips could work better. Sort of like Charlie Brooker's approach in his Screenwipe series. Don't get me wrong, the false sense of grandeur thing is funny when done right, and you're doing it right. It's just the actual sense of grandeur you should really rework.

I actually liked this episode. It's good to see this series getting better and better seeing I hated the first one, disliked the second one. The ones after that entertained me. He does make some good points, but I'm not sure if I agree with him.

Keep doing what you're doing, man.

I believe the internet way of saying that is "haters gonna hate" etc. Some people just don't get irony, sarcasm, persona, suspension of disbelief, satire... Humour....

The list is endless, really. You keep putting the stuff up and keep up your glorious V for Vendetta campaign against stupidity, and I'll keep laughing all the way.

Pretty much reinforcing what has already been said over the last several dozen comments:

1. Good progress compared to the first episode. A decrease in face time and an increase in looking at other things is always a plus. The red/black color combination is a bit rough on the eyes after a while.

2. Good points on the Sonic character issue. If you dig past the facade of irony, deprecation, satire or whatever you want to call it, Jim makes some good points on [somewhat] interesting topics.

3. Disagree with the Duke claim. It's fun to be a pretentious badass, and that's what Duke allows players to do. I don't think anyone looks at him as a character to idolize or emulate. It's just a lot of fun to go with it...kind of like the Chuck Norris jokes. Duke is a man's man in a man's world, just go with it and enjoy the satire. (Life is fun when nothing is taken seriously)

4. Overall show, meh. Good points made in most of these episodes, but viewers have to scrape through layers of stuff to get to it (annoying voice, eyesore visuals, not-satirical-enough persona). Either an improvement on the persona is needed or a complete shift in the method of presentation.

Cali0602:

4. Overall show, meh. Good points made in most of these episodes, but viewers have to scrape through layers of stuff to get to it (annoying voice, eyesore visuals, not-satirical-enough persona). Either an improvement on the persona is needed or a complete shift in the method of presentation.

Good observations, I agree with your points.

DeaDRabbiT:
Just like it's been stated before, it's a toss up which is more pathetic. People taking this poor excuse for hyperbole (which is the Jimquisition) seriously, or your repeated need to explain it to people, like that's going to make it any better. Jim Says: "Oh if only they knew I was acting like a self important jerk, they'd really get me, and love and respect my deep, expansive retrospect on all things video games."

I agree that maybe something is not working here if the author need to state to his audience that they are watching a "character". If you look at the other escapist features like Zero Punctuation & Movie Bob, they also have a character but they don't need to point at this or to excuse it (or maybe kind of use it as a shield).

I like this guy, he's getting into his swing. I totally disagree about Duke, I don't think he IS played straight, and they have hinted there's going to be more to him than meets the eye.

theultimateend:

SvenBTB:
... Ok, is The Escapist just trolling us now? Why is this show still around?

Because every episode a bunch of people like yourself show it attention and act like you hate it.

I don't like Fox News, yet I don't go around raging about how much crap they are. I understand intrinsically that they are crap and leave it at that.

You however, by being here, validate him.

I don't mind him, he has some good commentary in between the dry spots. The most bothersome part about it is the episodic return of people bantering about him.

It's like folks who star at car accidents and act mortified but never look away and never refrain from slowing down to see a new accident in the future.

The problem is that there is no other way for people to express their rage for him except in these comments sections. Presumably (and I suppose I could be completely misunderstanding the concept of a forum) someone in power reads these comments, and realises whether a show is liked or not. Because otherwise the entire site is not being run at all for the people who frequent it.

It also shows a massive hypocrisy on the part of the Escapist. If I was to make a topic, and the next ten pages were all attacking me, saying I was trolling, that my points were all wrong and badly researched, I'd be probationed and the thread locked. Jim makes an episode which is nothing but trolling (I'm not talking about this one in paritcular because after the first three I haven't watched a single one) and the comments stack up.

And comparing him to Yahtzee isn't accurate either. Yahtzee gets pages and pages of comments, of which I would be prepared to bet heavily that less than half, or maybe even less than a quarter, are negative. However I remember Jim's first video getting nearly athousand straight negative comments. If the Escapist was actually using a comments forum for the purpose a comments forum is supposed to be used for they would have seen that very few people on the site want him to be here and gotten rid of him.

Even additional to the hate against him in his own videos, there have been several poll threads of 'do you like Jimquisition' and the answer every time (before it got locked) was over half, 'we hate him, he has no business on this site.' If there is no way to make our opinions heard, then what's the point in providing a comments section, you might as well just say 'We will show the videos we like and you will appreciate it motherfuckers.' It reeks of something.

Jim, excellent work.
Let the haters hate.

It's not that we don't GET that the persona is fake.
It just isn't funny. Maybe if you acted like Fabio, that would be cheesey enough to be 'funny bad'. As it is, taking a Master Race approach doesn't work for comedy.

I know he is trying to be satirical but it just comes off that he is a a-hole.

This has to be the most laughably ironic Jimquisition episode made...and that EXACTLY what he was planning. Well done, Jim.

Ok, so I like the Escapist, they give content that is either great or just ok, they tend to understand the gaming demographic.

Then they give us this 'Jim' character, an overweight, unfunny idiot, who tries to review 'Duke Nukem' as if it isn't trying to take its own piss. I mean really, is the Escapist trying to actively mock the gaming nerds that feed it? Jim, playing the character of an overweight, unfunny nerd, who, in turn, is playing a greater, unfunnier nerd because 'that's funny lol!' isn't funny. Whoo! Quote V for Vendetta! Be English!

Jim, himself says, "People want to see people not as Icon of coolness, just lower on the social totum pole of coolness, someone who thinks they're awesome, but everybody knows they're shit"

Wow jim! Way to understand how the majority think of you! Get this shit off the Escapist, atleast then we can go back to pretending that Jim doesn't represent the majority of gamers, those sexually unsatisfied, toilet-tucking, overweight dickpistons that pretend they're funny when in reality they're about as funny as getting flesh-eating bacteria.

Hey look everyone!
its a fat guy telling me hes cool useing irony
now hes telling us hes being ironic, just incase we didnt get it.

So basically, hes noticed the bad reveiws and is makeing sure were all in on the irony joke.
yes jim we are, its not that we dont get it, its just that your a twat.

ps. whats the theme music at the start of the show? is it the white stripes?
who ever it is its cool.

I had always taken that the entire world Duke was in was a parody, so that him playing it straight is "the joke", I suppose.

I didn't originally want to post on this thread because I wasn't really sure what to say. But, after much thought, I've pretty much figured it out.

Jim makes a couple good points, but making Duke Nukem "too cool to be cool" takes away part of his character. It works for Sam; part of his charm is the fact that he really isn't that cool. But with Duke, it's not just the character that we're making fun of. Duke's world is a world that could never exist, and that's why it's funny and "cool."

I still think the point of this was he was trying to be ironic by being so deliberately blind to the fact that his own character is exactly as laughably over-the-top as Duke. I think. Because otherwise, the show makes no sense. Honestly, I think the real problem with this video was the divergence into talking about Sonic, because that part of it wasn't satirical or ironic in any way. I think most viewers probably took it at face value and agreed with it, which made it harder to tell for sure if the rest of it is supposed to be taken seriously or not. And, no, that's not a problem with the viewers, it's a problem with the show; anyone can make a video that's deliberately impossible to tell if it's serious or not, by being just ridiculous enough to provoke a reaction while still presenting an opinion that someone could conceivably hold. See: Poe's Law.

In short: I really don't think Jim's missing the point of Duke here, I think he swung for an extremely subtle shot at people who don't "get" his character, but because he mixed it with a (seemingly) genuine suggestion for the Sonic franchise, and the fact that it seems like people just expect him to have ridiculous opinions, it was completely missed by the majority of posters.

Ooooor he's just a dick who doesn't understand Duke Nukem.

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