Gruesome Grues

blog entry posted by lalo (Lalo Martins) on 2010-08-30 21:00:00

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More Writers Group writing exercise stuff... both written 30.08.2010

There Was a Grue

by Lalo

I went to bed early that night. The noise from the bars outside was still loud and the light from the bars was still bright. That seldom bothers me; I slept just fine. But I woke up in the middle of the night, with some noise inside the apartment.

I reached out for my mobile, to see what time it was, but it wasn't there. I remembered I had forgotten it in the kitchen earlier. I considered getting up to retrieve it, but it was very dark, much darker than I remember this apartment ever being, even at night.

There was no response from the bedside lamp when I flicked its switch. I added that information to the pitch-darkness outside and concluded, probably a blackout.

The choices were, then, going back to sleep, or getting up for the phone, flashlight, possibly candles. The reasonable choice would be sleep, but I wasn't feeling sleepy at all, and to be fair, I'm not always a reasonable person, even in more reasonable circumstances.

I sat in a corner of the bed, unable to see even my own knees, and wondering how I was going to find either flashlight or, well, kitchen, let alone phone.

“It is pitch black”, I joked to myself. “You are likely to be eaten by a grue.”

“Not tonight, no”, said the grue. “I'm not hungry.”

“You're not?”, I asked, feebly.

“Just ate. Blackout, you know.”

The voice seemed to come from my desk chair, just a couple of paces away. It was deep and bassy, with a hind of growling, and resonated in my every bone. I wondered if I was dreaming.

“So”, I asked, “to what do I owe the honour, in that case?”

A shuffling noise suggested the grue had shrugged.

“It's dark”, it said. “I wander around. It's what grues do.”

I pondered that for a moment.

“Pray”, I finally summoned the courage to ask, “may I put to you a question I'm really curious about?”

“Sure”, the grue said. “You can ask anything. That doesn't mean I have to answer.”

“I wonder”, I asked, “what do you really look like?”

The grue laughed. “Like a grue, of course.”

And somehow, I knew exactly what it meant.

The Grue

by Caitlin Arnould

“I'm not your shadow and you're not imaging me,” said the grue with a somber head shake.

“I didn't say you were or that I was...” said Dale, beginning to protest sleepily.

“But you wanted to. Don't think I didn't see those thoughts flash in your puny brain. I would never stoop to wanting to see them of course, but-”

“But they just grew!” said Dale.

“Ugh! No interrupting a grue! Woe is simply me and I see far too much of you trite beings. Every night it's the same. What I would give not to see so much!” lamented the grue with another heavy head shake.

Dale blinked, as if closing his lids would, like a curtain, mean the stage shall be cleared and a fresh scene prepared. It was in vain: the dodgy, pudgy grue had not budged from his perch at the end of the bed as his lids popped open.

“You're a grue. I see it, I know it, somehow, but...what is a grue? What in the world is a grue?” said Dale growing now slightly perplexed. The grue just shook its lumpy head and made an exasperated grimace, animating its uneven eyes and lips.

“Oh,” he began wearily. “The gruesome life of a grue! The gruesome life of a poor grue...oh what is the life of a grue!”

“That's what I'm trying to ask you,” said Dale in annoyance. “It seems to be a rather...melodramatic one.” He sighed. The two-foot urchin before him didn't appear to have any purpose to its 3a.m.visit, nor did it appear to have any intention of ending it soon.

“Oh oh oh! Oh oh oh! You can't imagine the gruesome life of a grue! I can't explain something so complicated and...and..lofty (yes woe is me! We reach beyond measure) to a...human. No, the life of a grue is a terrible, gruesome, sacred thing. Oh if I tell you what we are, it would break your heart!”

“Well it already broke my sleep, can't be that much worse,” said Dale sighing again.

“That's just the thing, just the thing,” said the grue shaking his hairless head. “Gruen cannot sleep. The world cannot bear to not have us witness everything. We lofty creatures, we were born to give existence meaning by being the witness to it all. Oh it's gruesome to be a grue!” At this point the grue's eyes filled with pinks tears and sobs began coming out of their pupils.

Dale sighed. How was one to sleep with an imp crying in the bedroom?

“I heard that thought!” cried the grue in admonishment. “Oh the life, the gruesome life...the gruesome life of a grue! Ohh! Oh oh oh! Confused with an imp! Oh it's gruesome! Oh!”

Rose is Late (short fiction)

blog entry posted by lalo (Lalo Martins) on 2010-08-09 16:00:00

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This was a writing exercise, but I thought it was lovely and didn't want to throw it into bit-limbo, so I thought I'd blog it.

So, first meeting with the writers group in Berlin, and they tell me Rose is late.

I wonder if that's the same Rose I met in Oxford, once, in a cold spring evening, at a reception for natural philosophers thrown by a man whose name was carefully kept out of record.

Rose wore a beautiful dress, in dark red silk, a wide bow holding it around her waist, and a charming red hat. I knew she was another traveller immediately, in spite of her carefully appropriate outfit and sturdy boots; for she wore a wrist watch, something that wouldn't be invented for another 42 years, and I recognised in it the unmistakable craftsmanship of one Chu-Liag Smith, from whom I bought my own pocket watch, in 2317.

Ah, probably not the same Rose. What are the odds?

She never could set the hour dial properly, though.

Stargate SG-1 Episode Filter

blog entry posted by lalo (Lalo Martins) on 2010-05-16 13:47:00

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My brother is watching SG-1 and a friend is about to start it, so they asked me to write this; I had already done this work for May years ago, so I said ok, sure. In case you want to watch it and are daunted by the size of the series (and there are some pretty poor episodes in the first few seasons), here's my opinion. Your mileage may vary. (Comments are welcome.)

For a full episode guide with photos and synopses, refer to the Stargate Wiki.

Season 1

101 and 102 - Children of the Gods (part 1 and 2): well, those are the pilot. Absolutely essential, and fun too.

103 - The Enemy Within: pretty good, and establishes setting. Also sees the final organisation of the SGC.

104 - Emancipation: ok but not great episode, absolutely useless to the setting. If you're a feminist, then do watch it.

105 - The Broca Divide: one of my least favourite episodes ever, I really, seriously hate it, but my brother actually enjoyed it.

106 - The First Commandment: irrelevant to the setting, but starts some ethical discussions that will be used quite a lot in the series. Not bad.

107 - Cold Lazarus: avoid. Unless you're a huge O'Neill fan; this episode is pretty bad but it explores his past and personality a bit more.

108 - The Nox: essential and good, 'nuff said.

109 - Brief Candle: beautiful episode, as in chick-flick-beautiful; irrelevant to the story, but I recommend waching it anyway.

110 - Thor's Hammer: good fun and very important to the story.

111 - The Torment of Tantalus: I like it; other people think it's one of the best in the series (I don't agree, but it's great). It's also pretty important.

112 - Bloodlines: so-so, but pretty important to the setting.

113 - Fire and Water: no. Just no.

114 - Hathor: strong taste of the 80s in the writing, but not a bad way to spend an hour, and reasonably important to the story.

115 - Singularity: pretty good writing and minor relevance to the setting.

116 - Cor-ai: I found it a bit boring, but if you're a fan of trial movies, I suppose you'd like it. Not important to the story.

117 - Enigma: ok episode, pretty relevant to the story.

118 - Solitudes: another fun, chick-flick ep, with some small but important relevance to the setting.

119 - Tin Man: one of the first funny episodes, worth watching; also has some very minor importance to the story. (Ok, not really it doesn't; just that a much better episode later is more or less a sequel.)

120 - There But for the Grace of God: great episode, can't be missed.

121 - Politics (part 1 of a 3-parter): first recap story (they became common on season endings), absolutely watch it; it's not only important, but it also recaps the whole season, including the eps you skipped.

122 - Within the Serpent's Grasp (part 2 of a 3-parter): great fun, super important, season finale, seriously, go watch it already.

Season 2

201 - The Serpent's Lair (part 3 of a 3-parter): does it even matter if it's good? It continues from Politics and Within the Serpent's Grasp, and you watched the other two, so obviously you're watching this one.

202 - In the Line of Duty: so-so but really important.

203 - Prisoners: not really good IMO. There's a better episode later that references this one but you can understand it with the recap only.

204 - The Gamekeeper: keep away.

205 - Need: you don't need to watch this.

206 - Thor's Chariot: good episode, and important.

207 - Message in a Bottle: useless.

208 - Family: ok episode, somewhat important.

209 - Secrets: ok episode, pretty important.

210 - Bane: this episode should be arrested for the crime of sucking.

211 and 212 - The Tok'ra (part 1 and 2): good fun, essential to the story.

213 - Spirits: ignore it.

214 - Touchstone: ok, and relevant.

215 - A Matter of Time: pretty good episode, not very relevant though.

216 - The Fifth Race: very good episode, super important.

217 - Serpent's Song: interesting and relevant.

218 - Holiday: yawn.

219 - One False Step: weird, irrelevant episode, I suppose some people like it but really, wtf.

220 - Show and Tell: not really good, I don't know.

221 - 1969: awesome. You owe this one to yourself.

222 - Out of Mind (part 1 of a 2-parter): not great but necessary.

Season 3

301 - Into the Fire (part 2 of a 2-parter): not great but necessary.

302 - Seth: unnecessary, but not TOO bad.

303 - Fair Game: super important.

304 - Legacy: ignorable.

305 - Learning Curve: pretty good writing, provoking story. But yeah, utterly irrelevant to the chronology.

306 - Point of View: yes please.

307 - Deadman Switch: passable, not great.

308 - Demons: I hated it. You will too, unless you're a fan of inquisition-style stories. Then it's ok.

309 - Rules of Engagement: interesting writing, somewhat relevant.

310 - Forever in a Day: key episode, not too great though.

311 - Past and Present: great fun.

312 - Jolinar's Memories (part 1 of a 2-parter): yes please.

213 - The Devil You Know (part 2 of a 3-parter): essential.

314 - Foothold: utterly irrelevant but interesting to watch.

315 - Pretense: pretty important and not bad.

316 - Urgo: meh.

317 - A Hundred Days: so-so. Some people find it “the best O'Neill episode” (not me). No relevance.

318 - Shades of Grey: fun and really important.

319 - New Ground: not too bad.

320 - Maternal Instinct: really important, but not really good.

321 - Crystal Skull: about as bad as the one with Indiana Jones in it. Run.

322 - Nemesis (part 1 of a 2-parter): key episode (good too).

Season 4

401 - Small Victories (part 2 of a 2-parter): key episode (good too).

402 - The Other Side: provoking story.

403 - Upgrades: ok fun, and “relevant” to the emotional side of the story.

404 - Crossroads: pretty important one.

405 - Divide and Conquer: good and important.

406 - Window of Opportunity: I love this episode, seriously. I also love froot loops.

407 - Watergate: interesting, tense episode in a different tone.

408 - The First Ones: ok fun, of minor relevance.

409 - Scorched Earth: unnecessary, but not too bad.

410 - Beneath the Surface: interesting. You may like it or hate it, but try. No relevance to the story.

411 - Point of No Return: intensely fun to watch, of minor relevance.

412 - Tangent: great tense episode.

413 - The Curse: great episode. Can't say any more w/o spoilers.

414 - The Serpent's Venom: absolutely necessary.

415 - Chain Reaction: necessary.

416 - 2010: fantastic.

417 - Absolute Power: key episode.

418 - The Light: you can live without this one, but not too bad.

419 - Prodigy: ok fun.

420 - Entity: best avoided.

421 - Double Jeopardy: important and fun.

422 - Exodus (part 1 of a 3-parter): essential.

5th to 8th seasons

Here you want to just watch everything; the series found its pace and no episodes are worth skipping.

9th and 10th seasons

Now it depends. If you became a huge fan of the series, go on watching. Otherwise, pretend the series ended with Moebius; these last 2 seasons are hugely less interesting than the first 8. Just treat yourself to episode 1006, title “200”. Then watch the second movie, “Continuum” (you can ignore “Ark of Truth” as it's the end of the 9th/10th seasons storyline).

Atlantis

The first episode of Atlantis is simultaneous with SG-1's 803 “Lockdown” and has a bit of cross-over with that and the preceding two. So the right order is 801 and 802, then Atlantis 101 and 102, then 803. You can watch season 8 and Atlantis season 1 any way you like (as Atlantis is isolated by that time). Then Atlantis season 2 interacts a lot with SG-1 season 9, and same for A3 and SG-1 10. So if you're watching 9 and 10, the best thing to do is to watch one episode of SG-1, then one of Atlantis, alternating, the way they were originally released.

Por que eu não vou comprar um iPad (e acho que você também não devia)

blog entry posted by lalo (Lalo Martins) on 2010-04-02 16:14:00

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Por Cory Doctorow, tradução Lalo Martins. Artigo original

Já estou há dez anos com o Boing Boing, achando coisas legais que as pessoas fizeram e escrevendo sobre elas. A maioria das coisas realmente empolgantes não vieram de grandes corporações com orçamentos enormes, mas sim de amadores experimentalistas. Essas pessoas conseguiram criar coisas e colocá-las nos olhos do público e até vendê-las sem ter que se submeter aos caprichos de uma empresa solitária que se declarou guardiã de seu telefone e outra tecnologia pessoal.

Danny O'Brien explicou de uma maneira excelente por que estou completamente desinteressado em comprar um iPad — parece o retorno da grande “revolução” do CD-ROM, em que o pessoal do “conteúdo” proclamou que ia recriar a mídia com produtos caros (pra produzir e pra comprar). Eu fui um programador de CD-ROM no começo de minha carreira, e passei por essa mesma empolgação, também, e acompanhei a época até o fim pra ver o quão errado estava, como plataformas abertas e amadores com espírito experimental eventualmente derrotariam os profissionais gastadores e habilidosos.

Me lembro dos primeiros dias da web — e os últimos do CD-ROM — quando havia esse consenso que a web e os PCs eram muito geek e difíceis e imprevisíveis para “minha mãe” (é impressionante como tanta gente da área de tecnologia tem uma opinião incrivelmente desfavorável de suas mães). Se eu tivesse uma ação da AOL pra cada vez que alguém me disse que a web iria morrer porque a AOL era tão simples e a web estava cheia de lixo, eu teria um monte de ações da AOL.

E elas não valeriam muito.

Os que já estão no poder dão péssimos revolucionários

Contar com quem já está no poder para produzir suas revoluções não é uma boa estratégia. Eles tendem a pegar todas as características que tornam seus produtos legais, e tentar usar a tecnologia para cobrar extra por elas, ou proibí-las completamente.

Quer dizer, olha a aplicação da Marvel (só dá uma olhada). Eu fui um gibizeiro enquanto criança, e sou um gibizeiro adulto, e o lance dos gibis pra mim era compartilhá-los. Se já houve um meio de comunicação que contava com a molecada trocando suas compras uns com os outros pra criar uma audiência, era os quadrinhos. E o mercado de usados para gibis! Era — e é — enorme, e vital. Eu não consigo contar quantas vezes fui mergulhar nas prateleiras e pilhas de gibis usados em um sebo enorme e com vago cheiro de mofo, pra achar edições antigas que perdi, ou experimentar novos títulos gastando menos. (É parte de uma tradição de várias gerações em minha família — o pai de minha mãe costumava levá-la, com os irmãos, à Dragon Lady Comics, na Queen Street em Toronto, todo final de semana, para trocar os gibis velhos por créditos e comprar outros novos.)

E o que a Marvel faz para “melhorar” os quadrinhos? Tiram o direito de dar, vender, ou emprestar seus gibis. Que melhoria. É assim que se pega a experiência prazerosa, maravilhosa, compartilhadora e criadora de laços que era a leitura de quadrinhos, e a transforma em uma atividade passiva, solitária, que isola, em vez de unir. Boa, Misney.

Infantilizando o hardware

Aí tem o dispositivo em si: dá pra ver que um monte de reflexão e esperteza foram colocadas no design. Mas também há um desprezo palpável pelo proprietário. Eu acredito — realmente acredito — nas instigantes palavras do Maker Manifesto: se você não pode abrir, não é seu. Parafusos, não cola. O Apple ][+ original vinha com diagramas das placas de circuito, e deu origem a toda uma geração de fuçadores de hardware e software que viraram o mundo de cabeça pra baixo, pra melhor. Se você queria que seus filhos crescessem confiantes, empreendedores, e firmemente do lado que acredita que você deve estar sempre mexendo no mundo para melhorá-lo, você comprava um Apple ][+.

Mas com o iPad, parece que o consumidor modelo da Apple é aquele mesmo estereótipo de mãe tecnófoba, tímida, cabeça-de-vento que aparece em um bilhão de versões do tema “isso é complicado demais pra minha mãe” (ouça os comentaristas exortarem as virtudes do iPad e meça quanto demora pra explicarem que aqui, finalmente, está algo que não é complicado demais para suas pobres mães).

O modelo de interação com o iPad é ser um “consumidor”, o que William Gibson memoravelmente descreveu como “algo do tamanho de um bebê hipopótamo, da cor de uma batata cozida de uma semana, que vive sozinho, no escuro, em um trailer tamanho duplo nos arredores de Topeka. É coberto de olhos e sua constantemente. O suor escorre nos olhos e os faz arder. Não tem boca... nem genitais, e só pode expressar seus extremos mudos de raiva assassina e desejo infantil mudando o canal em um controle remoto universal.”

A maneira como você melhora seu iPad não é descobrindo como ele funciona e fazendo funcionar melhor. A maneira como você melhora seu iPad é comprando iApps. Comprar um iPad para seus filhos não é uma maneira de dar partida na idéia que o mundo é seu para desmontar e montar de novo; é uma maneira de dizer a seus descendentes que até trocar as baterias é algo que você tem que deixar para os profissionais.

O artigo de Dale Doherty sobre o Hypercard e sua influência sobre uma geração de jovens fuçadores é uma leitura obrigatória sobre isso. Eu comecei como um programador para Hypercard, e foi a introdução gentil e intuitiva à idéia de refazer o mundo que me fez considerar uma carreira com computadores.

Wal-Martizatização do canal de software

E vamos dar uma olhada na iStore. Para uma empresa cujo CEO diz odiar o DRM, a Apple fez do DRM seu alfa e ômega. Tendo entrado em parceria com as duas indústrias que mais acreditam que você não deve poder modificar seu hardware, carregar seu próprio software nele, escrever software pra ele, mudar instruções mandadas pela nave-mãe (a indústria de entretenimento e as operadoras telefônicas), a Apple definiu seu negócio sobre esses princípios. Usa DRM para controlar o que roda em seus dispositivos, o que significa que os clientes da Apple não podem levar seu “iConteúdo” com eles pra dispositivos competidores, e desenvolvedores não podem vender em seus próprios termos.

A exclusividade da iStore não torna a vida melhor para os clientes ou desenvolvedores. Como adulto, eu quero poder escolher de quem compro coisas, e em quem confio para avaliá-las. Não quero meu universo de aplicações restrito a coisas que o Comitê de Cupertino decide permitir em sua plataforma. E como dono de direitos autorais e criador, não quero um único canal estilo Wal-Mart, que controla o acesso à minha audiência e dita que material eu posso ou não posso criar. A última vez que postei sobre isso, recebi uma carreira de desculpas para os termos contratuais abusivos da Apple, mas o melhor foi, “Você achava que o acesso a uma plataforma onde você pode fazer uma fortuna viria sem compromissos?” Eu li isso na voz do Don Corleone, e soou certinho. É claro que eu acredito em um mercado onde a competição pode acontecer sem me ajoelhar diante de uma empresa que ergueu uma ponte levadiça entre eu e meu público!

O jornalismo está procurando um papai

Eu acho que a imprensa está maravilhada com o iPad porque a Apple faz um bom espetáculo, e porque todo mundo na terra do jornalismo está esperando uma figura paterna que vai prometer que a audiência vai voltar a pagar pelo que eles fazem. A razão que as pessoas pararam de pagar por muito do “conteúdo” não é que podem obtê-lo de graça; é que podem obter montes de outras coisas de graça, também. A plataforma aberta permitiu uma explosão de material novo, parte tosco, parte tão bem-feito quanto o dos profissionais, a maioria direcionado a um público mais estreito que os meios tradicionais eram capazes. O Rupert Murdoch pode armar o barraco que quiser sobre tirar seu conteúdo do Google, mas eu digo, vá em frente, Rupert. Nós vamos sentir falta de sua fração de uma fração de uma fração de um por cento da Web tão pouco que mal vamos perceber, e não vamos ter a menor dificuldade em achar material pra preencher esse espaço.

Assim como a imprensa de gadgets está cheia de dispositivos que os bloggers de gadgets precisam (e em que ninguém mais está interessado), a imprensa mainstream está cheia de estórias que confirmam o consenso da mídia. Os impérios de ontem fazem algo sagrado e vital e principalmente adulto, e outros adultos eventualmente vão aparecer pra nos tirar do playground infantil que é a web selvagem, com seu conteúdo amador e falta de canais proprietários onde acordos exclusivos podem ser feitos. Vamos voltar aos espaços cercados que melhor retornam o investimento a investidores que não atualizam seus portfolios desde antes do surgimento do eTrade.

Mas a verdadeira economia da publicação no iPad conta uma estória diferente: mesmo vendas fabulosas no iPad não vai fazer muito pra estancar o sangramento da mídia impressa tradicional. Otimismo fantasioso e nostalgia pelos bons e velhos tempos não vai trazer os clientes de volta.

Aparelhos vêm e vão embora

Aparelhos vêm e vão embora. O iPad que você compra hoje vai ser e-lixo em um ano ou dois (menos, se você decidir não pagar pra trocarem a bateria pra você). A questão real não é as capacidades da peça de plástico que você desembrulha hoje, mas a infraestrutura técnica e social que a acompanha.

Se você quer viver em um universo criativo onde qualquer um com uma idéia legal pode torná-la real e te dar uma cópia para usar em seu hardware, o iPad não é pra você.

Se você quer viver em um mundo justo onde você fica com as coisas que compra (e pode dar pra outros), o iPad não é para você.

Se você quer escrever código para uma plataforma onde a única coisa que determina se você vai ter sucesso é sua audiência gostar ou não, o iPad não é para você.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution. Originally published on Boing Boing. Written by Cory Doctorow.

Esta obra é licenciada sob uma licença Creative Commons que permite compartilhamento não-comercial com atribuição. Publicada originalmente em Boing Boing. Escrita por Cory Doctorow.

Why Alan Moore is right, and why he's wrong

blog entry posted by lalo (Lalo Martins) on 2009-02-28 05:23:00

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Excerpt from Alan Moore's interview at Wired:

One thing is that with the comics medium, it has been proven—I believe by Pentagon tests in the late '80s—that comics are actually the best medium for imparting information to somebody in a form that they will retain and remember. That's not just me saying that, that's the Pentagon. I personally feel—and this is just pseudo-scientific hippie bullshit—I feel this might be because the unit of currency of what used to be called our left brain is the word. Our left brain is what goes about speech and rationality. The unit of currency for our right brain, conversely, would be the image, because the right brain is preverbal.

So perhaps it is because of the combination of words and images in a readable form that comics does have this unique power. Now, of course, movies are a combination of words and images, but they have a completely different structure and completely different way of working. With a movie you are being dragged through the scenario at a relentless 24 frames a second. With a comic book you can dart your eyes back to a previous panel, or you can flip back a couple of pages to check whether there is some reference in the dialog to a scene that happened earlier.

You can also spend as much time as you want absorbing every image. This is especially true of something like Watchmen, where I was trying to take advantage of Dave Gibbons' brilliant capacity as a former surveyor for including incredible amounts of detail in every tiny panel, so we could choreograph every little thing. The little symbols and signs appearing in the background, every little touch could be choreographed to the last detail, and we knew that the audience—because they'd be reading at their own pace—would be able to study each panel and to take in these almost subliminal details. Even the best director in the world, even a person as talented as Terry Gilliam, could not possibly get that amount of information into a few frames of a movie. Even if they did, it would have zipped past far too quickly. Because the audience at the movie theater is not in control of the experience in the same way somebody reading is.

One of my big objections to film as a medium is that it's much too immersive, and I think that it turns us into a population of lazy and unimaginative drones. The absurd lengths that modern cinema and its CGI capabilities will go in order to save the audience the bother of imagining anything themselves is probably having a crippling effect on the mass imagination. You don't have to do anything. With a comic, you're having to do quite a lot. Even though you've got pictures there for you, you're having to fill in all the gaps between the panels, you're having to imagine characters voices. You're having to do quite a lot of work. Not quite as much work as with a straight unillustrated book, but you're still going to do quite a lot of work.

And I have to agree. Comics are comics; you read it at your own pace, you analyse the details like it held the secrets of the universe, you enjoy the little hidden things both in the art and story, and you fill in the gaps. That's what makes it great, and that's why, no matter how well the movie is done, the comic will always be better.

(Well. In normal circumstances at least. I've seen mediocre books or short stories become great movies, but that's a separate story altogether, and to date I haven't seen it done with comics yet.)

On the other hand, I think dismissing the flick like he does is a waste of good entertainment as well. Time to quote from Dave Gibbons' interview in the same issue:

The most bizarre thing was to actually be inside the Owlship, you know? As I kind of implied in an earlier answer I've always loved drawings and measured plans of things. I went to a lot of trouble to make the Owlship convincing and make room for everything that we saw inside it. So, to actually be inside this thing—the thing that had been inside my head, I was now inside that. It felt exactly like the space that I'd felt when I'd done the drawings. I think that was really the strangest thing, to sit in the command chair and play with the joystick and press the buttons and watch all the lights flash on.

And that's where the magic really is. That's why those geeky movies are so great. It's like, well, going to a theme park, except usually with higher quality results. These things have lived in our imaginations for years, and now we get to see them there, big and real-looking. It's, well, fun.

Another important thing missed there is that movies can be a social experience. Comics, by the very merit of being read at your own pace, are solitary; you can get together with people to read comics, but you don't actually read together — well, you can, but it kind of ruins the experience. That's what is (well, used to be) so great about Heroes; it's kind of like reading a comic book, only I do it with my girlfriend, and we react together.

Short version? Absolutely do go watch the Watchmen, but not if you haven't read the comic yet. :-)

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