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Fall Bass

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About Fall Bass

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    Summer Time Bassness
  • Birthday 10/01/1986

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    Above it all

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  1. Fall Bass

    Unpopular opinions

    The Chris Columbus-directed Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is the best Harry Potter movie. The Yates-directed movies (the last four) are far worse than the first four. They made the magic in battle scenes incredibly generic, the pacing was often really choppy, and he had a bunch of really odd choices on what to keep and what not to keep in adapting the movies. Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a fine if flawed film. The battle with Smaug in Desolation of Smaug is pretty entertaining if silly, and the ending is excellent. Rogue One is a more entertaining Star Wars movie than The Force Awakens. Suicide Squad is an entertaining, enjoyable film even if it is a mess of problems that only works because of Will Smith, Margot Robbie, and half-decent pacing. The "Martha" moment in Batman vs Superman worked fine for me because it was about getting Batman (an obsessive vigilante) to stop his rampage and think for a second, and that's all it took for him to realize what he was doing was bad.
  2. So if Dolores mind-wiped Teddy only halfway through the first season, that means he's basically Chekhov's Gunslinger, right? I wouldn't be surprised if he somehow remembers and betrays her at some point (although it looks like it's to no avail). Or maybe that's just another layer of betrayal, and it will turn out that his betrayal was just programmed into him by the captured tech all along! Anyways, Shogunworld was neat. I love reminders of Lee's hackishness, such as recycling all the stories again for it ("you try writing 300 narratives in 3 weeks!"). I'm not sure why Maeve waited so long to try out her mind control stuff on the Shogun and his forces, but it's another twist.
  3. Fall Bass

    SpaceX's Big Falcon Topic 2

    I'll believe it when we see it. One of the downsides of SpaceX being a private company is that we have no idea of how much it's actually costing them to recover and refurbish the rocket engines between flights. I'm skeptical that it's cheap, otherwise they would have reflown them more than twice by now.
  4. That's crazy. I suppose that means we could be in for some interesting watching - if the first season gets rushed out and falls flat, Amazon will fire almost everyone involved and retool the whole thing to try again for Season 2. Assuming it even gets that chance, since I don't think Amazon would be averse to trying to bribe the entire LOTR and Hobbit movie team (including Jackson) to make the first season. They want a hit, not something new. They don't really have some of the revenue streams that a cable channel making this would have, either. HBO made back well over the budget of Game of Thrones just on the foreign TV distribution rights, but Amazon is presumably going to want to distribute this worldwide through Amazon Prime Video. I guess maybe they could sell the episodes at the same time, too, for those without a Prime Subscription. That's more or less it. Love or hate the most recent Jackson movies with the Hobbit, but they each made almost a billion dollars at the box office alone (never mind how profitable they were from other revenue streams). Amazon wants a big hit. It's a pity, because they could do a Lord of the Rings do-over that's stylistically different and closer to the books. The name recognition alone would get a ton of people watching at least the first season of it, and while the budget would be pretty generous by TV standards, it's still limited compared to blockbuster movie budgets. That could force some economy and creativity in depictions (as John Garth pointed out once, the Jackson movies tended to try and capture some of Tolkien's more evocative and grandeur depictions by making everything enormous). I say that as someone who likes the movies and really likes the Fellowship of the Ring movie still.
  5. Fall Bass

    Bakker LIV - Soul Sphincter

    Ishterebinth alone would have made the Second Trilogy worth reading for me, but there's plenty of other good stuff as well. Just everything about Ishterebinth was the best part of the Great Ordeal (and holy shit the ending of that plot line).
  6. Maybe they should start off with him in Gondor in disguise as Thorongil, rather than as a young man up in Rivendell. They could always just use flashbacks to show him meeting Arwen, having that amusing chat with Elrond about it, and so forth. It would also give them a lot more characters and plots to work with, because Aragorn himself isn't really enough to hang even a season on - he needs friends, allies, enemies. Their contract lets them get out of it if the show underperforms, right? I'm surprised they even thought they had a chance with HBO. There's no chance HBO would take that deal when they already have a massive hit fantasy series that they own the IP for, and are planning a spin-off that might very well cost north of $100 million/season.
  7. Correction on my part - Amazon doesn't need to have a season produced in two years. They just need to have started production within two years of optioning the rights (which would mean they need to start production by November 2019).
  8. No surprise there. The appendices for LOTR have the basic outline of a potential story: Aragorn raised at Rivendell and hanging out with Elrond's sons, Aragorn heading south in disguise as Thorongil and leading the effort to burn the Umbar fleet, Aragorn heading really far south across the equator ("where the stars are strange"), Aragorn heading far east and coming back to meet Arwen at Lothlorien, Aragorn and Gandalf hunting for Gollum. That's five potential seasons right there, if they can flesh it out successfully. No news on whether they managed to bribe Jackson to come back for part of it yet. The temptation for that has got to be strong - IIRC, they have to have a season of the show within two years of optioning the rights.
  9. Fall Bass

    US Politics: Follow the Money!

    I'm honestly curious as to why the NYT and other papers are so heavily writing these stories. Are those articles really generating a lot of profitable traffic? Are the journalists writing them just so weirded out that these nice people could be Trump supporters still that they keep picking at it? I guess it could be a narrative. It wouldn't be the first time that the mainstream political press in the US became fixated on a narrative about a person or people, and then could only be budged with great pressure and time from it (see "Paul Ryan, conservative policy wonk and Serious Man"). The narrative seems to be that the White Working Class voted for Trump because of economic pain.
  10. Fall Bass

    US Politics: Follow the Money!

    I tried Saffron as a cooking ingredient and didn't get the appeal. Yes, it turns rice a nice yellow color, but that's about it. I can't see Trump sanctioning Europe over Iran. He's already functionally hollowed out his tariff with exemptions (including for Europe).
  11. Fall Bass

    SpaceX's Big Falcon Topic 2

    I found this rather interesting bit about reusable rockets and SpaceX: IIRC None of the Falcon 9's have been flown more than twice at this point. But it still could be worth it if it ultimately allows for a much higher schedule of launches.
  12. Fall Bass

    US Politics: Follow the Money!

    It takes longer, but I think we will get rising wages if unemployment stays below 4% for a few years. At least anecdotally, that's been true here in Utah. I'm not so sure about the corporate power hypothesis. Do we see slower wage growth in sectors with fewer firms dominating large shares of their markets? I don't doubt that the much weaker unions have had a big role in it - at the very least, they greatly enhance workers' power to push for wage increases in good times.
  13. I think the authors that get remembered will be those who had the biggest influences on visual media in the late 20th/early 21st century. When I think of media that is emblematic of our time, I don't think of any book stories. I think of visual media, particularly movies and television shows. As much as I hate to say it, I honestly wouldn't be surprised if Martin's books are remembered decades from now mostly for creating a fantasy aesthetic that games and television/movies/streaming heavily imitated going forward, and for helping to drive an explosion of SF & Fantasy series on television paralleling their rise to dominance in movies (especially if we count comic books movies as SF and/or fantasy). If we get periodic adaptations of the books into visual media like with Dracula, then they could survive that way as well (although that's a two-edged sword - a lot of the Dracula media leans more of stuff added by earlier adaptations rather than the source material).
  14. It just needs to find the right outlet and the right audience. The Expanse could still conceivably do that, if it gets picked up by Amazon or Netflix and turns out to be an excellent performer on a streaming-only venue. Maybe Amazon's Cultureverse series will turn out to be that. Space operas tended to suffer on TV in the past because they were expensive to make and drew only decent ratings. That was even true for Star Trek on its original run back in the 1960s, although there were exceptions (and the later Star Trek series did better). I've read that that's an odd show. All the ads promoted it as essentially Seth McFarlane doing a Star Trek parody, but it doesn't seem to be a parody at all.
  15. Fall Bass

    Tolkien 2.0

    Sam is a genuine pleasure to read in Lord of the Rings. When I re-read the sections with Shelob, all I could think of was, "Holy crap, like a year ago this guy was just pulling weeds and tending flowers in Bilbo Baggins' garden, and now he's hundreds of miles away fighting an almost unimaginable nightmare spider".