Monday, June 6, 2011

SCI-Spy #2



He likes his war cold, his champagne colder, and his stories idiotic.




NOTE: The alpha-meson blaster I'm holding was a prop created by Allen Amis! You can tweet him @anarchysquared or e-mail him at amisanarchy@gmail.com

50 comments:

Mountain King said...

Interesting fact:-
If a trans-dimensionally active object, or indeed creature, enters our (or just your) existence it has to follow the basic rules of that reality. For example in a reality using our rules, that we understand, they cannot create energy, only convert it. The same for matter. The Entity must have left some sort of trail, even if it was microscopic. If it dragged the Ninja Style Dancer to it's home the disruption of matter would leave a trail. Even there.

Just thought I'd mention it.

The intro was a great improvement over the hackneyed Bond parody you tried last time. It's difficult to parody something like James Bond. It already doesn't take itself seriously so trying to make a joke about it almost always falls flat. Now I mention that because the comic tried it. It tried and failed in both issues. At least this time it attempted a plot. Rather than the nonsense last time.

unfortunately, however, the plot is mediocre at best. I found it so un-engaging I've already blanked it out. Dull, plodding, predictable and overall vacuous. I've had more entertainment watching paint dry.

Moving on, finally we have some development with the arc plot. There's been a lot of jokes about storylines in TGWTG reviewers recently. The thing is with you it's written as a story aside from the review, not in spite of it. Again, it's interesting and very well done. I could argue the idea of building up momentum. A stone rolling down hill might start up slow but soon it gathers speed. This sort of development demands you keep up the pace. My problem with the start of this arc was the sudden stop after the Vyce story came to a jarring halt. Please keep going and don't let this thing slow down again. You're too good a writer, too good a storyteller, for that.

Thomas

PS
Moench, this abomination was written by that fourth rate hack. Fantastic. I take back anything positive I could ever say about this tripe.

Razorvine said...

Love letter to Batman, In Space. Of course it all makes sense now.

Also woot! Some serious progress on the plot.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"Moving on, finally we have some development with the arc plot. There's been a lot of jokes about storylines in TGWTG reviewers recently. The thing is with you it's written as a story aside from the review, not in spite of it. Again, it's interesting and very well done. I could argue the idea of building up momentum. A stone rolling down hill might start up slow but soon it gathers speed. This sort of development demands you keep up the pace. My problem with the start of this arc was the sudden stop after the Vyce story came to a jarring halt. Please keep going and don't let this thing slow down again. You're too good a writer, too good a storyteller, for that."

Well, it's important to remember that as a storyteller for something like this, there are several story beats I want to hit on, several plot points that need to occur, but at the same time I have a date in mind I want to end it and if I give away too much at once, people will put the pieces together quicker and some of the tension is lost.

Cubey said...

The plot of this thing... it's like a tabletop RPG. A tabletop RPG with a really amateurish game master, who has more enthusiasm for outlandish ideas than ability to pull them off.

And one of his players has a mancrush on Batman, while the other tries his hand in playing a female character, and does that by being bitchy all the time.

Jarkes said...

So, what was the gadget you were using in the intro and the stinger, anyway?

Also, I want to know your opinion on something: Jonathan Tzachor, long-time producer of Power Rangers, and current executive producer of Power Rangers Samurai, stated a while back that the Disney seasons were non-canon. Considering his fanboying of the Sentai, it makes me wonder how he plans on adapting Gokaiger if, in his mind, nearly half of Power Rangers is not canon. There's also the fact that fifteen seasons of Super Sentai never WERE Power Rangers seasons, but that's another matter... What are your thoughts?

Toby said...

What was that gun you were using in one of the first gags?

Amnesia said...

90's Kid, Harvey Finevoice, and Poyo at a karaoke bar... There must be fanart.

Jesse said...

Got to hand it to Doug Moench. He can write Batman when he's not writing him and do it subtly.

Will the ship's A.I. have Bender's "in your face interface"?

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"What was that gun you were using in one of the first gags?"

An alpha-meson blaster from Doctor Who. A fan completely out of the blue asked me if I wanted one. Xd

"So, what was the gadget you were using in the intro and the stinger, anyway?"

In the intro I was using a Mark IX science tricorder and a sonic screwdriver. In the stinger I was using a TOS-style tricorder.

"What are your thoughts?"

It's short-sighted, naive, and will be ignored by the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

"The plot of this thing... it's like a tabletop RPG. A tabletop RPG with a really amateurish game master, who has more enthusiasm for outlandish ideas than ability to pull them off."

Personally, I thought that the plot was more like that of a first person shooter video game. You rarely sneak anywhere in those games and instead go around killing every enemy that you see. the beginning is just the opening cut scene where the game pretends to have a plot, defending the hacker is just a specific challenge for the level, and surrendering was just an excuse so that you could get to the next level to kill more enemies.

Jarkes said...

"It's short-sighted, naive, and will be ignored by the rest of us."

Amen to that. Especially since some fans have interpreted Tzachor's stance not as " the Disney seasons are non-canon," but rather, "the seasons that Tzachor wasn't involved in are not canon."

Speaking of Power Rangers and Jonathan Tzachor... Power Rangers Samurai does seem to be straying a little from Shinkenger at this point... though Bulk and Spike are still relegated to little more than comic relief...

Seriously, Bulk and Spike are there purely for fanservice. There has been no mention of any of the previous seasons, and you'd think Bulk would remember the time he stood up to Astronema. It makes me wonder why they bothered bringing Bulk back if they weren't going to really do anything with him. There's also the fact that the whole deal with Spike apparently being Skull's son has only been mentioned on the official website, and has yet to be mentioned on the show itself... Ugh. I actually like Power Rangers Samurai, but if you're going to have an alumni reprise his role after nearly 10 years, can you at least acknowledge the other seasons?

Anonymous said...

hey linkara after the enity story arc you should do one about exploring the vyce ship like perhaps cheaking out a difrent deck per episode it would be great for world building.
i hope you repy with your thoughts on this idea.

so untill they make a sci-spy movie make mine linkara.

Mario Di Giacomo said...

What was the gray index card thingy?

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"What was the gray index card thingy?"

Starfleet PADD. Think tablet PC or iPad before either existed.

AussieDragoon said...

NO!!!! don't get an IA, there's so much room for error. Do you not fear the robot apocalypse at all, even after Mecha-kara.

Jarkes said...

More Power Rangers talk... (Sorry, but there's just so much to talk about that series) Have you ever noticed that the Ensemble Darkhorses of the series (in both Power Rangers and Super Sentai) tend to be either a) the Green Rangers, b) the Sixth Rangers, or c) the Sixth Rangers that happen to be Green Rangers as well.

Just something I noticed...

FugueforFrog said...

Don't try to make sense of trying to make Sci-Spy anything more than some stupid sci-fi James Bond pastiche...then again if you want that you could watch "Moonraker' but at least it's better than other movies. And...yeah, considering your talk at the end, I can see the resemblance to Batman...which I doubt Ian Fleming was going for when he created him: Batman as a secret agent.

BTW: don't give too much AI to Comicron...considering alt-universe Poyo turned out to be Mecha-Kara, you may just be creating Skynet in an alt-universe for even more of the things.

BTW X 2: All I can think of with Starchild is Parliament...or Home Movies.

blackduke said...

This entity theme is creepy.

Yogurt said...

So these guys are to espionage what Duke Nukem is to feminism?

Yeah, this comic is dross.

Jer Alford said...

"BLAND, VERY BLAND."

Ozaline said...

Very interesting review... and I did like the opening segue, very nice way of tying the ideas of your opening to the themes of the review.

I don't know that a Batman inspired character is such a bad thing, because here he's not writing it to the detrement of other established characters.

I do wonder if the series got better and if we'll be returning to it at some point?

Also as I've previously mentioned I'm hoping to start doing my own video reviews... Should be getting a decent high deff video camera before the fall semester starts. Working on scripts is it okay if I use a couple of your jokes... specifically "I love it when the comic points out the plot holes for me"?

Anonymous said...

Y'know, Doug Moench is/was actually pretty good writing Batman, as long as he ONLY wrote Batman (a lot of his stuff in the lead up to the 1993 Knightfall story was pretty damn good). It's such a pity that he doesn't have any perspective on the character outside of Gotham.

I'm really loving this story arc. I'm really surprised at how good a job you conveying tension and slowly building up a plot with such limited resources. And it's so genuinely creepy! I tell myself it's just a side story for a review show, but it's still creepy as all hell. However, I would LOVE it if, after this review is done, you started another storyarc that was totally light-hearted and goofy. Like, your earlier blurbs with Doctor Insano and stuff were great, but I think it'd be cool to see a storyline involving characters like him. Since a lot of your recent storylines seem to be homages to dark age/modern age comic events, maybe you could do a stretch of very Silver Age-y crack?

Mario Di Giacomo said...

"Starfleet PADD. Think tablet PC or iPad before either existed."

Ah. I couldn't tell from the back.

the-doctor said...

Linkara, I covet your collection of classic scifi props. Also, Spy Hard was the perfect choice to play us out. Awesome review!

As for NSD: "Not even the sonic screwdriver can get him out of this one..."

Random Internet Critic said...

Good review, pictorial literary critic chum

But what in the name of Valhalla does 'S.C.I.' mean? Is it just one of those pointless ancronyms that mean nothing? Like I.N.T.E.L.L.I.G.E.N.C.E. from Team America or C.O.N.T.R.O.L. from Get Smart?

Plus, how is he a "Neo-Moses"? Does he lead Space Jews to the Cosmic Promised Land? Is he played by Charlton Heston's clone in a Holographic Film version of his life?

Also, Bond minions aren't as dumb as that mook who pressed the button. I don't think I've ever seen Bond say to some jumpsuit minion not to press that big red self-destruction button that says "Only evil genius may press".

Anonymous said...

Wait, why wouldn't you think the entity was real? I don't understand what made you think that, you seemed convinced awhile back that it existed.

Anonymous said...

Wait wait wait, the "Lucifer" file? Sebastian Starchild?

Oh goddammit, that file is about him, isn't it? When you called his name "un-subtle", you didn't realize the half of it. *headdesk headdesk*

Carl said...

Interesting that literally about 30 seconds before you comment on how odd-looking Starchild's eyes are Isis explains them in dialogue you quote. "Retro ultra-vi lenses" are clearly those weird contacts you're talking about.

Note to Anonymous: Lucifer is "Light Bringer". (Yes, Linkara named his webcomic after Lucifer.) Starchild would be quite different, so if Moench is making that connection it's just another annoyance.

Christopher said...

Did you take some video editing/ acting classes recently because this series has taken a level in badass.

Tighter cuts and comedic timing, great lighting, audio still has some reverb but it has become your down and dirty DIY style which works for you.

Real growth. Damn fine work.

Xepscern said...

Okay, first, what the hell does "S.C.I." stand for? I hate inditoic acronymns like that. Acronymes are only fun when done for comedy. For example, as a kid we named out clud the Institution Dedicated In Outer-Transcending Space, or IDIOTS.

Also, I don't necesarilly believe that this was a intentional Batman homage. It goes back to the whole "This book is about Jesus" thing where people connect things that shouldn't necesarily be connected.

Xepscern said...

Okay, first, what the hell does "S.C.I." stand for? I hate inditoic acronymns like that. Acronymes are only fun when done for comedy. For example, as a kid, me and my friends named out the club the Institution Dedicated In Outer-Transcending Space, or IDIOTS.

Also, I don't necesarilly believe that this was a intentional Batman homage. It goes back to the whole "This book is about Jesus" thing where people connect things that shouldn't necesarily be connected.

As for the arc, I like where things are going. I usually watch these originally at midnight, so hearing the music when I'm by hyself is a creepy and awesome.

Lastly, lost commet to Mountain King: how the hell do you respond so soon? You are always the first one to comment.

kriss1989 said...

Of course the sonic told you nothing, you scanned a WOODEN door. You know wood is the ONLY thing it doesn't work on.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"Interesting that literally about 30 seconds before you comment on how odd-looking Starchild's eyes are Isis explains them in dialogue you quote. "Retro ultra-vi lenses" are clearly those weird contacts you're talking about."

Having them be oddly-colored would make sense for contact lenses. The problem is that the eyes are HUGE. I'm pretty sure that contact lenses don't actually make your eyes bigger.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"Wait, why wouldn't you think the entity was real? I don't understand what made you think that, you seemed convinced awhile back that it existed."

Basically, the idea was that I wasn't convinced that Vyce didn't just make up the whole thing as an excuse to conquer worlds (or that he was the very entity he claimed to be after), since there was no evidence to back him up.

NGT said...

Is it just me, or is Isis Nile strongly channeling the spirit of Rei Ayanami in some of these shots? Particularly around 6:45, if you had told me this was some kind of Neon Genesis Evangelion adaptation I would have completely believed it. She's doing it again at the "galactic pimp" line, and again at "Lucifer File". Is Hideki Anno credited somewhere in this comic? 'cuz he should be.

Teraspes said...

Great review! =)

Mike said...

@Jesse

With regards to Comicron-1's AI, I wouldn't be surprised if, given the nature of this show, Linkara was aiming for something like JARVIS from the Iron Man movies. That's what I'm kind of hoping for anyway.

That, or given Pollo's occasional tendency to do rush jobs on stuff when he gets sidetracked with other things (see Neurto), something a little more Wheatley-esque.

"Okay, okay, was trying to open a rift between dimensions, but I seem to have triggered the positron cannons. Not a problem, though, your planet's totally fine - Pluto's half the planet it used to be, well, not that it was really a 'planet' anyway..."

Volvagia said...

Good suggestions on the AI. Bender Interface Esque: Too brash for this show. It'd be too close to having two Linkaras on the ship.
Wheatley Esque: Interesting. Would it be programmed with a British voice, or (as it's insinuated AI works in Portal) would he download 90s Kid's brain into the AI?
JARVIS Esque: Also interesting. Could either be a copy of Film Brain's brain (AI works like it does in the Portal universe) or designed and programmed with British voice.

Gyre said...

It's a pity, I actually liked the James Bond parody opening.

Interesting that you mention technology and society. Can you think of any (good) comics that look at comic technology changing the world without being a love letter to Luddites? Any comic equivalents to Ghost in the Shell?

On another note, I still think (based on the image at 2:34) that Starchild is actually a Lovecraftian Deep One.

PickyGamer said...

Silly Linkara, a ninja saying something cryptic and disappearing behind your back? That's what ninjas do!

PickyGamer said...

Silly Linkara, a ninja saying something cryptic and then disappearing behind your back? There's nothing suspicious about that, that's what ninjas DO.

Carrie Kelly said...

Mike said:

"With regards to Comicron-1's AI, I wouldn't be surprised if, given the nature of this show, Linkara was aiming for something like JARVIS from the Iron Man movies. That's what I'm kind of hoping for anyway."

I HOPE SO. I mean, if it's called "Comicron", I hope it's full of comic book/superhero references! And yeah, exploring it in the next arc (which is hopefully less dark than this one...this one's awesome, but fun and silliness is awesome too after all this!) would be SO COOL. I mean, who knows how many cool ideas you could implement on a spaceship?

Anonymous said...

The Comic: Well, I'd be tempted to say 2 things this time around. 1. It's no worse than most spy movies and TV shows. 2. You're surprised he came up with an expy for Batman, especially after your review of JLA: Act of God?

Your arc: Now things are getting serious. As for the tech you were using this time around, I may have 2 of the items you showed off. 11's Sonic Screwdriver and the TOS tricorder, if the one you used was the Scientific version that is.

Fiery Little One

Dan said...

Man that guy really likes batman. I imagine batman saved his life, his mothers life, and his pet's life.

Toby said...

Three questions:

1) Will the AI be a full personality, like Pollo?
2) Will it have a synthesized voice, again, like Pollo, or a human one?
3) Will you do it, or will you get someone outside the show to do it?

*isahugeAT4WandastrugglingvoiceactorsothiswouldbeAMAZING*

Ming said...

Wow, that comic is just as bad as the first one. It doesn't help that the moron who came up with the epic FAIL that calls itself JLA Act of God is one of the writers behind this comic. The main hero is just an expy of Batman with James Bond and every space hero thrown into the mix. I hope we get to see the other issues of SCI-Spy.

The tension around the Entity is continuing to build. Can't wait to the Comicron's AI in action.

It's amazing how things have progressed since the first review on SCI-Spy. The production values and skills sure have significantly improved.

P.S.: For the record, I don't exactly consider Power Rangers R.P.M. (and I'm looking forward to an episode on that awesome series) part of regular Power Rangers canon, given the post-apocalyptic scenario. However, I still regard the other Disney Power Rangers shows (from Ninja Storm to Jungle Fury) canon.

Octo7 said...

God I love George C Scott, was that clip form Exorcist 3? Linkara, have you seen The Changeling? Scary scary scary movie. Great review btw, but the comic doesn't seem that bad, especially compared to some of the stuff you've reviewed in the past.

Rachel said...

SCI-Spy gets a tpb collection, and the Kristiansen/Seagle run of House of Secrets doesn't?

What. The. Fuck. Vertigo.

Lewis Lovhaug said...

"SCI-Spy gets a tpb collection, and the Kristiansen/Seagle run of House of Secrets doesn't?

What. The. Fuck. Vertigo."

In fairness, Vertigo didn't publish the trade - Image did.

Jeremy A. Patterson said...

I enjoyed Agent Nile's kinky hairdo!

J.A.P.