The world is full of idiots, and someone needs to point it out to them or they will never know.

Friday, January 1, 2010

2009 - A Year in Review

Happy bloody new year. Did you have fun last year? To most people, 2009 was a year like nearly every single one before it (but with more nudity, mostly thanks to Underbelly). But for deeply cynical people such as myself, 2009 sucked the big one. In lieu of human contact, I've decided to take a look back on the past year, and grade each facet of popular culture. And in case you're wondering, these grades are final. You may not appeal them.

Film
2009 certainly had some terrific films, like Gran Torino, Inglourious Basterds and Up, but the overwhelming majority were utter crap. Most disappointing was the sheer volume of shitty romantic comedies. Really, ladies, when will you tire of films like Bride Wars, He's Just Not That Into You, Confessions of a Shopaholic, Duplicity, The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, My Life in Ruins, The Proposal, The Ugly Truth and Did You Hear About the Morgans? If I see one more trailer for a movie that features a sexy, independent woman learning about love and life, in hilarious circumstances, I just might die.

On the flip side, there were a bunch of uninspired action films this year - Terminator Salvation, Wolverine, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen all sucked, and yet you stupid idiots all went and saw them, just because they were part of a franchise you'd heard of and the trailer featured explosions. Meanwhile, brilliant original films like Moon don't even get a wide release, since it doesn't feature tits, a childhood memory to exploit or an irritating shaky camera. And let's not forget that Star Trek (a franchise once renowned for overcoming its special effects shortcomings with brilliant storytelling) overcame its terrible storytelling with brilliant special effects.

Finally, enough with the remakes, sequels and films based on books. Is it too much to ask for some ORIGINAL ideas? Sure, we got Paranormal Activity, which was great, but we also were subjected to tripe like The Pink Panther 2 and Friday the 13th, to name a few.

Finally, when a critically-panned Twilight film breaks box-office records, you know it's been a bad year.

GRADE:
D-
(upgraded from an E due to the few good films I mentioned)


Television

What an awful year 2009 was for TV. Not only did we have returning crap like Australian Idol and Dancing with the Stars, but new reality shows like Masterchef rated stupidly well, meaning we're well and truly stuck with reality TV for the foreseeable future. Let's also not forget the ridiculous amount of cop shows out there. Jesus Christ guys, when is enough enough? This year we had:
  • Law & Order
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
  • Law & Order: Criminal Intent
  • Law & Order: UK
  • CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
  • CSI: Miami
  • CSI: NY
  • Without A Trace
  • Cold Case
  • NCIS
  • NCIS: Los Angeles
  • Criminal Minds
  • The Mentalist
  • Bones
  • Castle
  • City Homicide
  • The Bill
That's just Australian TV, and I'm sure I've missed a few. Ironically, I've sold far more Family Guy DVDs at my work than all of these cop shows put together. Now, I know Family Guy does suck, but there's no denying its popularity. Doesn't this indicate that the TV networks have no idea what they're doing? Putting crap cop shows on night after night while popular shows like Family Guy and Lost languish in a late night timeslot is very, very wrong.


GRADE:
E

Books
I have very little to say about the written word this year except that the biggest selling books were the Twilight novels, which are, according to Stephen King, written by an author who "
can't write worth a darn.... she's not very good." My sentiments exactly.

GRADE:
C-
(at least we had a new Matthew Reilly book)

Video Games
Games fared a little better than other forms of entertainment, but still could stand to improve a lot. The biggest problem by far was the huge amount of terrible games released for the Wii that sold in stupendous numbers, despite the fact that pretty much every game released for the Wii is the same (a party game, with a theme). The Wii's big game this year was undoubtedly Wii Sports Resort, which was just another "fun collection of mini-games designed to make clever use of the Wii controller".

Ironically,
in the first half of 2009, the biggest selling games for the Wii weren't released in 2009, perhaps because developers are beginning to realise what a joke the system is. You people have got to stop buying shovelware, or the Wii's never going to get any respect. In fact, just stop buying the Wii, don't you realise how stupid you look?

Meanwhile, the
PS3 and 360 both did well, but with the PS3 the clear winner in terms of exclusives. What were the big exclusives this year? Well, the PS3 had Infamous, Uncharted 2, Ratchet and Clank: A Crack in Time and Killzone 2 to name a few, while the 360 had... um...

Oh, right, Halo Wars! And Halo: ODST! And... er... that's it. Microsoft, we get that Halo is your big franchise and all, but for Christ's sake, that does mean you're allowed to publish other games.

But before all of the PS3 fanboys rejoice and throw their praise on me, don't forget that the PS3 still suffers from looooooooooooooooooooong installations of game data and is still just a Blu-ray player with a controller instead of a remote.

So, the console of choice this year goes to the PC, simply because it's not as shit as the other three.

GRADE:
C+


Conclusion
2009 sucked. And so will 2010.

© 2010 by The Free Man

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