Saturday, April 14, 2012

I'm still alive, but not in the cool GLaDOS way.

It’s kind of funny that I’ve been so stuck on Alan Wake lately. See, Alan is a writer… a writer who has struggled with writer’s block for two years. Do you see why this is funny, yet? 

The writer.

My own personal bout of this… affliction (for lack of a better term) has been rather intense. I have things that I wish to write about, but the words won’t quite come together to form anything that makes sense. And, so, I sit around, eat ice cream sandwiches, and lament the situation. Meanwhile, this block seems to be seeping into everything else that I do. I can’t even tell you the last time I picked up my sketchbook. Or worked on craft projects, or scrapbooks. The motivation is there, but the actual product just isn’t.

I could blame this on the bullshit that has been my April, but that would be too easy, and not entirely true. This – whatever this is – spans back further than that. Maybe more music, less caffeine, and some Tarantino films will help draw me out of it.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Advanced Natural Tirade
So, there’s a show that airs on the Disney Channel called A.N.T. Farm and I kind of hate it. Immensely. Naturally, the girls like it quite a lot.

The premise is that a high school in San Fran has something called the Advanced Natural Talents program – or ANTs! What a clever acronym! Tee hee! These kids are about 11-ish, but they are so naturally talented and advanced that they get to start high school early. The leads are a rather nasally girl called Chyna, who is musically gifted, and her BFF, Olive, who supposedly has some sort of crazy photographic memory and knows multiple languages (and yet has one of the worst Japanese accents I have ever heard…). The supporting cast is made up of a motley assortment of wacky personalities: the principle of the high school (whom you might know as Frau Farbissina from the Austin Powers movies); Chyna’s father (an officer for the SFPD); Chyna’s older brother; a couple of cheerleaders; a couple of other A.N.T.s, and the teacher of the A.N.T. program.

One of my main problems with the show is the amount of stereo-typing that goes on: One of the other A.N.T.s is a husky boy who’s name I can never remember because I am too busy marveling at how horrifying he is. He eats everything in sight (and disgustingly at that), thinks about food all the goddamn time, and abhors physical activity. An episode with a Chinese restaurant depicted the owner as something of a slave driver, completely indifferent to the terrible conditions in his kitchen. The most recent offender was a girl who was proficient in football, hockey, and MMA who had a major anger problem, screaming at and beating the shit out of anyone in her way. What the fuck?

My other issue is that half of these people are so fucking stupid that they really shouldn’t even be able to function. At all. Sub-par intelligence is a flaw present in at least one character in every Disney show, but in A.N.T. Farm it is completely out of control: One of the cheerleaders is pretty much illiterate, can’t do simple math, and can barely fucking walk without being faced with some sort of simple problem that she is unable to solve. The husky boy I mentioned previously is rather dim-witted (but he’s in the Advanced program because he’s a computer wiz? Huh?), and Chyna’s brother – a high school freshman – seems to have the intelligence of an immature 6th grader. Hell, even the teacher in charge of the gifted children is dumb as a box of rocks! I don’t know if the writers think that making the majority of the cast a bunch of idiots serves to make Chyna and Olive look smarter, but it doesn’t. If anything, it’s insanely annoying.

To top it all off, this show is on ALL THE GODDAMN TIME. I hate that the girls like it so much; I don’t want them to think that overweight people are slobs, or that blonde cheerleaders are idiots. Thankfully they understand that it’s just telly, but it’s still terrible that this kind of writing even exists in the first place.