Hello, nerds! Here are two things for you to discuss this fine Monday:
First: This weekend I played Limbo, which is very close to, if not the most beautiful video game I have ever played. Yes, I know it's been out a few months, and I am certainly not going to say anything more interesting about it than what's already been said. But for you non-gamers who may never see these graphics, go take a look at the gallery. Each scene is an eerie, chilling, charcoal-rendered image remembered from a dream. And like Portal it's one of those games that I think even non-gamers might enjoy: physics-defying puzzles that are fun to solve, and there are very few moments where you think "UGH! I have to do all that AGAIN to move on?"
After the jump: Zombies!
Second: I sort of feel like after Shaun of the Dead, and certainly after Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, that the zombie thing is played out. But since I will watch literally any crappy vampire- or zombie-related movie or tv show, I still caught up on the new AMC series The Walking Dead this weekend. Considering this is the same network that brought us Mad Men, the dialogue is pretty bad. It's filled with crappy cliches ("Well 'Officer Friendly' from 'up the road aways', welcome to the big city…" [pan to city street overrun with zombies]) and lame emotional moments (a character watches a zombie with only a torso pulling herself across the grass by her hands and says to her, "I'm sorry this happened to you." And then he shoots her in the head.) And the all-important "Jack Shepard" moment: "There's us and the dead. We survive this by pulling together, not apart."
Then there's all your token stock-characters: kind-hearted, white sheriff's deputy (our main protagonist) who's looking for his wife and son; racist red-neck guy; black, vaguely hip-hop guy, named T-Dog (I'm not kidding); tough-but-vulnerable blond lady; and wise-cracking Asian kid who hasn't shown his tech skills yet but I'm waiting for it. The show takes place in Atlanta and the surrounding areas, but there are very few black folks among our protagonists or among the zombies, which is weird in a city that's somewhere around 60% African-American. Did the blacks all survive the break-out and escape safely to destinations unknown? Cuz that would be interesting. But somehow I doubt the show is moving towards any deep racial commentary.
The show's not a complete bust: there's all the hallmark zombie musts: mob of the dead hungrily eating intestines; characters trying to blend in with the zombies, shuffling along and groaning, their living scent masked with dead guts. T-Dog managed to make it through an episode without dying, so that's something. And the make-up is fun. Yeah, I'll probably watch a few more episodes. Or not.