August 26th, 2007

wart

From Horror to Heat

Yesterday was the ninth Monster-Mania Convention. bethje and I have attended every one of these, and this was no exception. It was far from the best one, but it wasn't the worst either. The panels for the question-and-answer sessions made more sense than they often do. I have to say that it was probably my most uncomfortable time at one of those conventions, though. The ballroom always gets hot when it fills up with people, but the heat got to me more this time than usual. It also didn't help that I was sitting in a narrow chair between two people for many of the sessions. During the session with Angus Scrimm and Reggie Bannister, I felt like I was on the verge of passing out or something. I never actually have passed out, as far as I can recall, but there have been situations where I almost wished I could. That aside, though, the panels were pretty interesting. A few things that were worth mentioning include:
  • Catherine Hicks showed up for her first horror convention (as part of the Child's Play reunion [1]), but wasn't asked anywhere near enough 7th Heaven questions. {g} She did mention that people told her that the show was inspirational for them, which makes me wonder what they were smoking. Or maybe they were just being nice.
  • Warwick Davis said that he'll be playing Nikabrik in the Prince Caspian film. He also mentioned enjoying playing the original conception of Flitwick for the early Harry Potter movies. I kind of wish someone had asked him why they changed his look (I half considered it myself, but I've never managed to work up the nerve to ask a question at one of those things), but I suppose he might have even known.
  • When introducing Sid Haig, Dave (the guy who organizes the conventions) said that certain people didn't want him coming back after his first appearance, or something along those lines. I kind of wish I knew the details of that. I always find him to be one of the most enjoyable guests, but I have noticed that he's never been quite as abrasive since his first appearance. I wonder if he was asked to tone it down somewhat.
  • Several people from the original Halloween series weren't too happy about Rob Zombie's remake of the first film. I'm no fan of remakes in general (there are some decent ones, but the basic idea just seems so lazy), but I'm willing to give the new Halloween the benefit of the doubt. I didn't think the original Halloween was quite as great as the people involved said it was, though, so maybe that's why I'm not quite as adverse to its being remade.


I guess that's about all I have to say on that subject. I think these convention reviews tend to get shorter every time (this one might be longer than the last, but I don't feel like looking right now). I did notice that, unlike every other time, the program didn't give any hints whatsoever as to who will be appearing at the next convention. Maybe they're tired of advertising guests only to have them cancel beforehand, though. My favorite was when the program for one of the earlier Monster-Manias announced that William Shatner would be at the next one. Not at all surprisingly, he wasn't.

[1] Each Q&A session usually has a title, and it's often "[insert movie or series title here] Reunion]." Others have included "The Men Behind the Mask and Makeup" (for various costumed horror stars), "The Mask and the Glove" (Robert Englund and Ken Kirzinger), and "From Scream to Scooby" (Matthew Lillard). Warwick Davis' Q&A this time was called "From Endor to Leprechaun," which I found pretty lazy. At least Matthew's had some alliteration. Why not "From Wicket to Willow," or "From Wicket to Flitwick," or something? I guess Dave wanted to include a reference to Leprechaun because it was his main tie to the world of horror, but he must have done something else that started with an L or sounded kind of like "Leprechaun," right? (For the record, I have not seen any of the Leprechaun films, nor do I have any particular desire to do so, although I do kind of wonder if they could fit into the so-bad-they're-good category.)
wart

Beginning Dissection: Why the Frog Hates You

So, my general take on Sims 2 University is a positive one, but its vision of college life is pretty hectic. I got three of my Sims through their freshman year with 4.0 GPA's, but they had to spend pretty much all of their time working or taking care of their needs so they'd be willing to work, so I haven't been able to try out much of the other college stuff in the game. It also kind of bothers me that college-bound Sims start out with so little money, and are apparently not able to bring any items with them. I know that college kids being dirt-poor is the stereotype, but when has The Sims ever had a realistic take on money? Oh, well. The pre-existing dorms do provide for all of their needs, so it's not such a big deal.

One thing I do like about the expansion is that it's a good way to get teenagers out of my existing houses without waiting for them to grow up. You can also send neighborhood NPC's to college, thus freeing them from the horrors of perpetual adolescence. They don't seem to have any memories, though. One of the NPC's I sent to college had briefly gone steady with one of my playable characters, but this isn't mentioned in her memory screen. Perhaps they didn't bother letting the NPC's remember things because they were originally supposed to remain, well, non-playable? I don't know.

I should probably get to bed soon, but I think I'll play the game for a little while longer, and I know full well that "a little while" when playing that game usually turns into "hours." I did take a nap that ended up lasting longer than I was planning, so perhaps I won't need as much sleep as usual. Who knows, though? My sleeping schedule has become totally crazy as of late.

I wonder if I should buy some more Oz books now, or wait a little while on that. I'm sure I'll end up doing it sooner or later.
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    Robin Goldwasser: I Hear A New World
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