Friday, 11 December 2009

This is the New Order

Designer is the new Artist
Artist is the new Entertainer
Skater is the new Jock
Jock is the new Gay
Gay is the new Negro
Prisoner is the new Slave
Liberal is the new Conservative
Conservative is the new Compassionate
Mum is the new Dad
Doctor is the new Dealer
Citizen is the new Cop
Multiculturalist is the new Racist
Freedom Fighter is the new Fascist
Consumer is the new Activist
Activist is the new Terrorist
Terrorist is the new Communist
Communist is the new Capitalist

This is the New Order.

- Yvan Martinez and Joshua Trees for v. Issue 5

Monday, 2 November 2009

Silent Thrill

Sorry I have not blogged in a little while, I have had a lot going on recently and, in all honesty, have not felt like writing. I am a bit confused right now but, I am sure putting some ideas down would be very therapeutic.

So, if you had not noticed, the last weekend past coincided with annual ‘All Hallows Eve’. Much like other ‘holidays’ such as Christmas and Easter, Halloween means something different to you at different stages throughout life. Ironically, this change is also mirrored on a scale of how ridiculous you look in a costume the older you get. But I digress…

This Halloween I decided to stay in, turn the lights down, relax and watch a Horror film. Now if you know me you could testify that I really do enjoy a good film and can be critical when I find a film below-par. Therefore, it was imperative that I watched a film fitting of the evening. Alas, being partial to this genre all year round, there were very few Horror films that fit into my idea of an ‘suitable’ Halloween night movie. This frustration can be illustrated by the Venn diagram below:

Couple this with location related limitations (I was in Nottingham at the time) and financial/time restraints placed upon me, as well as my company that night, I was in a metaphorical pickle.

Truth be told, I am not easily led to be frightened by Horror film. In fact I do feel a little jealous of those who do, those who are able to freely abandon their concept of reality and dive deep into the belief that the ‘axe-wielding murderer who only appears on that one night per year’ is a feasible concept to be worried/scared about, erstwhile knowing that you are still ultimately watching a film created for entertainment purposes. This made me think; ‘when was the last time I was truly on edge, truly petrified at the horror genre?’

And then it hit me. And it wasn’t a film.

Silent Hill 2, the game, scared the beejezus out of me. It had everything: a fantastic, slowly unfolding, yet deeply involving plot; characters immaculately developed and equally horrific; and an ultimate twist which would not be out of place on a perfect Horror film script. If you had not experienced this game, and are able to do so, I implore you to try and see for yourself.

With this in mind I decided to watch the celluloid equivalent of the game ‘Silent Hill: The Movie’ directed by Christophe Gans. Sadly, much like when you read a novel which has been ‘re-imagined’ onto the big screen, I was left feeling let down at what could have been. Yes, there was the trademark eerie fog coating the city (which originally was put in the game due to the developers limited graphic capabilities) but everything else, just lacked. The plot, the characters, the twist: removed.

If you have seen this film, go and play the game. Then you will see what you have really missed. You will be horrified.

ps. alternative Titles considered for this post: 'Silent (but Violent) Hill', 'Silent Hil-arity'

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Three Lions and the other sixty million.

I am glad that it seems I am not the only one who is outraged by the news that England's next match against the Ukraine is going to be broadcast solely online.

For me, the national football team has always been a sure-fire medium to bring the country together. It's almost an unspoken rule; men of all backgrounds huddle in front of televisions in front rooms, pubs, even cinemas in order to catch the action. Creeds, colours and classes all put aside for 90 minutes of action where everybody's objective are the same: England + Victory = Success. The ambiance created during a major tournament is fantastic; an equal measure of blind optimism and nervous anxiety, which engulfs all but the most ardent foe and brings out a sense of incalculable jingoism.

I understand that this predicament is down to the collapse of Setanta. They 'had' the rights to broadcast the game in England, but since their demise, the rights are available to the highest bidder. Unfortunately, the Ukrainian FA (who are selling the rights to the game) have refused to budge on the original price agreed , despite the lesser emphasis on the outcome of the game over here since England qualified last month. So Sky, BBC and ITV amongst otherwise have decided that they aren't interested at the price and so Setanta will broadcast via Pay per View directly on their website.

Granted, this is a major step in the mix of mainstream broadcasting and technology, and one that has caught the public attention. You see my argument is not with the theory, it's the practise. There is no doubt that personal computers have become an easily accessible medium for broadcasting, be it TV, radio or other. I will be as bold as to say that everyone reading this post will have had experience using BBC iPlayer, or Sky Player, or failing that watched a few clips on YouTube and realised that suddenly you've lost an hour of your time. Its so simple, overwhelmingly accessible and likely to became very important to many in the future.

However, right now, this is still not an option for everyone. My research (read: googling) from the Office of National Statistics shows that roughly a third of homes in the UK do not have access at home to the Internet. That means one third of the population do not have direct access to view the England game, regardless of price of PPV. This contrasts with news that 90% of UK homes have not only television, but 'Digital' television. So it begs the question, if the BBC's purpose is to represent the people, regardless of ratings, why hasn't it?

Having already been priced out of going to the matches, more and more are further getting distanced from their national team. This is not on.

I, for one, will not be paying to watch this match and I encourage you to do likewise.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

The End of the Beginning?

Right here goes...

Blogging. Always been a bit of a spectator sport for me. Something that I have always admired from afar, yet never deemed my use of time perpetually demanding enough to share with any interested masses (or hereby lack of). I read them, I envisage myself writing them. I never do.

However, it has come to my attention that a place to share and vent could be helpful to me in any future vocation I wish to pursue. Ergo, here we are. Day 1. Step 1. Blog number 1.

I suppose here is as good a place as any to introduce myself. My name is Chris. This is m
e (on the left):

I have spent 22 years inhabiting this Earth, and I am currently '
employmently-challenged' (read: unemployed). The latter is mostly down to two parts; a) I am a graduate who can be fairly indecisive and b) this wonderful recession restricting possible avenues (read: obvious excuses)

On the brighter side, one of the side-effects of living with being employmently-challenged, once you have overcome the mild self-loathing, is the free time. With this time I have been able to do try new things. I have taken a couple of work experience placements to learn new skills, I've been able to read more and I am currently learning Spanish (muy bien!).

Hopefully I will find work soon, pieces will fall into place, and a new path will be taken. Until then, this is my new outlet to share with you. Like it or not, you have just read it :P and I do hope that you do come back and read it again sometime.

Welcome to my Blog.
Make yourself at home.