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Ben Babcock

I read, write, code, and knit.

4 Articles Tagged with “Joss Whedon”

  1. Some villainy to brighten your day

    Where would we be without villains? Well probably happier, and healthier ... maybe safer. But perhaps a little more ignorant when it comes to matters of the human soul....

    On Saturday I went to see a performance of Zastrozzi: Master of Discipline by a local amateur theatre group as a fundraiser for their local Belegarth guild. The play consists of an insane artist on the run from Zastrozzi, master criminal of all Europe (apparently set in 1893). Zastrozzi finally corners Verezzi only to face Verezzi's tutor and guardian, Victor. As the play progresses, Zastrozzi and Verezzi both show signs of insanity while they separately investigate the nature of good and evil. Zastrozzi is a misanthrope and an atheist who believes his only purpose is to hold people accountable for their actions. Verezzi believes he is a servant, then a messenger of God, then a visionary, and finally a saint. Whether or not these men are sane is open to interpretation (what is sane anyway)? The play ends on a depressing minor chord, as such plays are wont to do.

    The performance was excellent, especially the two actors who played Zastrozzi and Verezzi; they really threw themselves into the part and…

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  2. It's all fun and games until your death ray explodes

    Act three of Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog is up. You can watch all three acts until midnight July 20. Go do it. Right now.

    I've got mixed feelings about act three. As I write this, it's only been up for about an hour and a half, so fan reaction is still formulating. A lot of people are angry. I can see how act three seems like a let down after the first two acts. Now, this may just be major denial on my part, but I think Joss planned it that way.

    A supervillain musical isn't something you see every day. Instead of casting Dr. Horrible as the straight antagonist and villain, he has made him a villainous protagonist. We actually root for him; we want him to get the girl. But having him succeed in his evil plans and getting the girl would blow our suspension of disbelief out of the water--Penny's character doesn't allow that. So the ending is the only natural way for the plot to conclude (if it is a conclusion).

    The saddest scene for me, however, was not the one at the climax after the explosion of the death ray causes you-know-what (if you don't…

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  3. Why yes, that is Joss Whedon in my pocket...

    Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

    For those of you who haven't watched Buffy, Angel, or Firefly, (I hear you exist, apparently) let me give you a quick rundown on who Joss Whedon is. Those familiar with his oeuvre, please skip to the third paragraph.

    Joss Whedon is an amazing writer. He is the creator of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer and its spin-off Angel, along with a western science-fiction (yes, it's that cool) series called Firefly. Once upon a time, a big bad network cancelled Firefly after airing 12 of the 14 episodes (out of order), much to the consternation of the fans the show had already acquired. It seemed like there was no hope for resurrecting the series, and an Age of Terrible Darkness ensued. Then, a glimmer of hope: thanks, in part, to fan demands, Universal Studios bought the movie rights to the series, and Joss Whedon made a feature film called Serenity, which may very well be one of the best science fiction films of our time.

    With me? Good. During the Writers' Strike, Joss Whedon decided to get together with some family and friends to write a fun musical. Specifically, a supervillain musical. This week he is releasing…

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  4. Serenity

    Spoiler warning.

    The movie was paced very well, there was plenty of action in the beginning and end, although the middle dragged just a little. Each character also got their bit of the action, and of course, River gets a lot of action. I'm rather disappointed with the smaller parts that Inara and the Shepard get, especially the latter fellow, but at least he had some great lines. The characterisation was good too, all the actors slid back into their roles very naturally.

    The "Mr. Universe" character seemed a bit of a gimmick to me, perhaps even a deus ex machina, which is uncharacteristic of the Firefly motif. He's a little too sudden and a little too pivotal to the plot for my tastes.

    Wash's death was quite dramatic and meaningful. Apparently, he's the character with whom I identify the most, and I do love his dinosaurs. The people at the theatre (and it was pretty crowded) literally gasped when he died, because it came out of nowhere. I was so saddened that I had to go to the washroom. When I came back, they were getting ready for the dramatic fight scene where Simon and Kaylee would get to…

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