Archive for April, 2014

The Best and Worst Decisions in K-Pop

Day three and we move back into the K-Pop sphere with an article written by one third of the K-Pop dance cover group ZISSPop (check them out on YouTube) who also happens to be my sister.

Also, a quick note: Unfortunately tomorrow I won’t have the means to post anything, so Guest Week will technically go on one day longer this time around.

—Written by Krispy—

—Edited/formatted by Vagrantesque—

Hello, all. I am Krispy, sibling of Vagrantesque. Some of you may know me from ‘ZISSpop’, my K-Pop dance cover group. I have a special interest in both dance and Korean culture, so K-Pop is sort of my forte, given that it includes a generous portion of both. The following article details what – in my opinion – have been some of the best and worst decisions in the Korean Pop Music genre thus far. This includes relevant factors such as fashion, music taste, choreography, skill and group dynamic; not just music. If you know nothing about K-Pop, you probably won’t really know what I’m talking about, but feel free to give it a read anyway.

OK, what?

I tried to choose and rank these objectively (which meant getting rid of all my bias’ and fan-girl conceived opinions). The result was quite a lengthy and detailed analysis of various components within K-Pop. If you do not agree, I hope that you can at least enjoy!

– – – KRISPY DISCLAIMER – – –
The following article represents my opinion only. I am not trying to say that my opinion is the way to go, nor am I trying to claim that mine is the only one that matters, nor that I am the best. Although a lot of the following information is factual, my opinion is not fact. I do welcome your opinions, but please don’t bully me. Ty.

 

The Seven Worst decisions

 

7. Doing a second ‘Growl’ clip.

A collection of EXO’s close ups in the 2nd video for ‘Growl’.

Look, do I want to be that guy who complains about seeing extra EXO footage? No. But it just seems to me that SM’s second rendition of EXO’s Growl was a touch unnecessary. The first video had already gone viral because of how unique it was, with its smooth camera work, its complex choreography and the fact that it was (supposedly) all filmed in one single take. So why would you divert people from that? (Inb4 ‘fan-service’ and ‘for the money’). Don’t get me wrong, I love EXO as much as the next guy (probably a little more than the next guy), but to me they just take the simple first video and jazz it up, add some special effects, put a little more makeup on the blokes and force them to repeat the choreo in front of a snazzy background (and without the 360 degree camera action that made the first video unforgettable!) Call me old fashioned, but I am just a fan of some good dancing, and EXO showed a new level of skill in that first Growl clip that will set them apart from other K-Pop groups for the foreseeable future (even if only for that shot of Kai dropping his hat and then swiftly picking it up and stepping back into the choreo without blinking an eye).

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The Power of the Steam Sale

Day number two. Here’s a friend of mine who has recently followed the light at the end of the Steam-powered tunnel.

—Written by CrAk3rs—

—Edited/formatted by Vagrantesque—

Steam and sales – two words that are burnt into the minds of the lucky people who are part of the glorious PC Master Race, (sorry console kids). The sales are those of legend, creating hysteria, hype and pandemonium, ravaging our wallets of the hard earned cash that we have so long worked for.  But Steam hasn’t always been the go-to marketplace for PC. Believe it or not there once was a time where people were highly critical of the platform.

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On Endings, Or Why Bosses Make the Game

Let’s kick the week off with a writer whose general observation blog partially inspired me to get writing several years ago.

—Written by Soapman—

—Edited/formatted by Vagrantesque—

Games are made and games are ruined by their finale. Rage, for example, is a gloriously fun game, but its finale leaves a bitter taste in the mouth, and I find myself unwilling to play it again, knowing its ending. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, however, despite being one of my least favourite Zelda games, has such a fantastic, frantic, and dramatic finale, that I find myself constantly wanting to play the game again, just to beat the boss. It is therefore the finale, in particular the boss, which I discuss in the following collection of words.

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Guest Week! Again!

Ladies and gentlemen, here we go! Vagrant Rant’s second-ever (maybe annual)

GUEST

GUEST

WRITER

WRITER

WEEK!

WEEK!

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If you’re getting tired of the way I constantly prattle on about how you should spend your money, you’re in luck, because for the next seven days this site will be hosting some out-of-the-ordinary entertainment media content written by folks other than yours truly.

Please enjoy.

It’s someone else’s turn.

Movie Review: Captain America – The Winter Soldier

What a time to go to the movies.

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Starring:
Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L Jackson
Director:
Anthony & Joe Russo (Welcome to Collinwood, You, Me & Dupree)
Rating: M
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My feelings on the first Captain America film were mixed. I thought it had an exciting and well-executed first half that unfortunately turned into a straightforward, by-the-numbers superhero baddie chase by the end. The film failed to make me care about the Captain the way I did about Iron Man or even Thor. The “straight man” shtick that has defined the character throughout his long existence just didn’t resonate with me in that first film, as cool as his promotional scenes/song were, though I know others might have felt differently. Once The Avengers came along, however, I understood his appeal. In the context of a rather dysfunctional superhero team, Cap’s level head and idealistic focus on what needed to be done made him a tangibly purposeful character who redeemed his allies just by being there. So writing him into the corruption-addled centre of what is essentially a 1970s-style political thriller, complete with Robert Redford, is actually a really good idea as it turns out.

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Mega Ultra Blast Cast Ep.18


mubc2

After five weeks of being unable to record, the Mega Ultra Blast Cast finally returns with a jam-packed, bumper length episode. We feature more audio giveaways, try to cover over a month’s worth of gaming and movie news, talk about the astounding number of games we’ve been playing, discuss Captain America: The Winter Soldier, dissect the new Super Smash Bros information, ruminate on the future of Final Fantasy, pit Infamous Second Son against Titanfall in the battle of the next-gen exclusives, mock each other’s Trophy progress and much, much more.

If you feel so inclined, go for a run, take a scenic drive or just curl up on the couch and play some games while you listen to the opinions of three Sydneysiders just glad to be back in the studio.

You can play the whole episodes right off this page if that’s what you’re into:


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Or you can go to the Soundcloud site/app and listen from there:
https://soundcloud.com/mega-ultra-blast-cast/mubc-18

(To download and listen offline, follow the link and then click the download tab)

As always if you enjoy what you hear please share the cast with your friends – Until next time!

Kickstarted and Moving Up

There are many opinions floating around on and off the internet about the merits (or lack thereof) of Kickstarter, the crowdfunding website designed to help people get their creative ideas off the ground and into the hands of those who wish to benefit from said ideas, by relying on donations from fans. Plenty of projects have failed (some before they get funded, others afterwards – see the OUYA Android game console) while others, like the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset and the recently released Veronica Mars movie, have reached their desired funding goals and then some, really taking off in a big way.

As of now I have only ever donated to two Kickstarter campaigns. One is the multi-platform WayForward videogame Shantae: Half Genie Hero, which looks rad. The other is Zach Braff’s long-awaited (by some) Wish I Was Here, the spiritual successor to his directorial debut film Garden State from 2005. The first teaser trailer for the film just dropped, and it hasn’t yet been sent to any major news outlets, so here it is:

Garden State is one of my all-time favourite movies, as it did a great job of capturing the emotional highs and lows experienced by the average Western twenty-something. Braff promises that Wish I Was Here will do something similar with the thirties, and by the looks of things, he’ll be telling his story in a similarly quirky way this time around. The soundtrack of Garden State won a Grammy award, so I see no reason why Braff’s music choices won’t markedly enhance the onscreen action here as well. It appears, at least, that he still adores The Shins.

Man, I hope this movie is good.