Sunday, April 29, 2007

Back from the Depths

I usually hate it when bloggers take a week or two off from updating, only to come back and write a big long post about how busy they've been. But not when I do it. So buckle up, Wortmaniacs, it's a Report Recap!

My off hours have been primarily occupied by writing associated with checks that just so happen to be made out to me. Check out the Port Chester and Rye Brook editions of The Westmore News. I usually don't shamelessly plug my own work, but I wrote a couple of nifty little stories in there. Check them out online at http://www.westmorenews.com.

As far as Wort Reportings go, there's a lot out there that's been picked up on my radar, and I'll briefly share with you a few of the things that have been occupying the time I haven't been spending feverishly putting words together to make sentences.

As you all know, I'm a Spider-Man fanatic. Not just of the movies, mind you, but of pretty much everything surrounding the character. Peter Parker is just someone any geek can relate to. Is it art imitating life or vice versa?

With Spider-Man 3 just on the horizon, Sony decided to tide over the hardcore fans (and make a buck in the process), by putting out an extended cut of Spider-Man 2, and calling it...wait for it...Spider-Man 2.1.

8 additional minutes of footage? Rock on. New special features? Go for it. But why oh why is this thing called Spider-Man 2.1? It sounds like a software upgrade! Why not call it Spider-Man 2: Special Edition? 2.1 implies that this movie is somewhere in between the second and third films, but is way closer to the end of 2. For example, to me, a movie called Spider-Man 2.1 would consist of showing us just what J. Jonah Jameson did with that caviar that he told the caterer not to open and whether Peter ever got to pay the rent that was long overdue. You know, the stuff not important enough for either 2 or 3. In other words, 2.1 implies some form of continuation, not a new cut of the same movie.

Nevertheless, it rocks. And it's not the major things either. Sure, the fight scenes are longer, but what I really like about this cut are the character moments. Harry Osborne not wanting to ruin Peter's birthday with his "I hate Spider-Man" rant. MJ questioning her marriage. Hell, the new elevator scene with Spidey and Hal Sparks is worth the purchase alone. A men's fragrance called "Thwip?" Great delivery AND a wink at the comic book readers. Well played.

On the gaming end, I've finally dusted off the Xbox 360 for Guitar Hero II. Sure, I may look like an idiot rocking out in my living room to "Monkey Wrench" with a plastic guitar, but damn it, I have a blast doing it. I can't make it through the day without at least one run-through of "Carry on Wayward Son" by Kansas. That's addiction, friends. Not because the game is pretty to look at, but because it's just that fun. Developers take note. Substance trumps style every time.

On the literary side of things, Christopher Tolkien has once again milked J. R. R.'s unpublished notes to release yet another Middle Earth novel, called Children of Hurin. Now I haven't read it, yet I do intend to. I love everything Lord of the Rings...excluding of course The Silmarillion, which reads like a long, drawn out catalog of nothingness. I understand what Chris Tolkien was trying to do, but this material was obviously never meant for publication. Hopefully, he's learned from his mistakes.

I've got an early day tomorrow, but I promise to touch on these subjects further as time allows, and I'll be checking in on any comments you guys might make (if there are any). I'd love to make the Wort Report more interactive, so I encourage feedback.

Next weekend I'll be back with my thoughts on Spider-Man 3. Have a good one, Interwebs.

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