Thoughts on the New X-Files Series

The X-Files is going to be returning to Fox as a six episode mini series,  and if we lived in a perfect world where the show was cancelled immediately after the sixth or even seventh season, I’d be super excited. Sadly, in our universe, the season nine finale “The Truth” and the simultaneously dull and insane “I Want to Believe” exist, both written by X-Files creator Chris Carter. Six new X-Files monster-of-the-week stories that ignore the infuriatingly convoluted and ultimately pointless mythology could be great, but before you get too excited, remember that “I Want to Believe” was a stand-alone story. Look how that turned out. Carter has said that he had plans for a third movie that would be about the 2012 alien invasion – you know, the one Mulder found out about in “The Truth,”
which is why he was sentenced to death and had to break out of prison and flee? Which nobody cares about at all in “IWTB”? I took Carter’s hand-waving of Mulder’s fugitive status as an indication that the mythology was concluded and can now be safely ignored, which is definitely a good sign. But I’m still feeling like Scully: skeptical that this new series will be any good. I’m no psychic pedophile, but I predict that it’s going to bite more than a two-headed dog. If you don’t get that joke, it’s probably because you fell asleep during the last movie (there was a two-headed dog in it). I’ll always love The X-Files, just like Mulder will always love his lost sister, Samantha; also like Samantha, the show’s death was a relief after years of torture and suffering. Maybe the new show will be a hybrid clone of the original, genetically engineered to remove stupid plotting, but when it comes to getting my hope up for this series, my attitude is less “I want to believe” and more “Trust no one.”


Ground Kontrol Has More to Offer

Yesterday I went to Ground Kontrol’s all ages free play party for spring breakers. I have rarely been to Ground Kontrol as a quarter per play seems silly given the amount of games I have at home, but a mere $5 cover to access all the arcade has to offer for a few hours sold me. I was excited to see many familiar games that I had first experienced at home. Getting my hands on them here proved to me that Ground Kontrol’s arcade offers me something new. The unique artwork, controller setups, and fellow players who joined in turned each game into a more personal experience.

To get on a game it had to be unoccupied and I had to walk up to it. Then I had to figure out which button got me started and try get a handle on the controls before I ended up at the game over screen.


The colorful cabinets did just as much to draw my attention as the active video screens.


What I could never experience at home is the quirks of each of games’ cabinet. Marble Madness is a game I played where the marble follows the spin of the track ball.



Moves I had mastered in Street Fighter just weren’t going off when I attempted them on the cabinet’s controls and in X-Men, Wolverine hardly seemed to listen to my pleading with the attack button.


Smash TV’s dual stick controls now seemed pretty awkward on two stiff joysticks placed six inches apart.




Paperboy, which I already thought of as a hard game, was taken to another level with the handle bar controller.


Some time on each cabinet allowed me to immerse myself in the game. Playing them in the arcade has given me a greater appreciation for the systems that bring the games to life.






The layout felt spot on for an arcade. Everywhere you turn you are faced with a new game to play. I was happy to see games not available in my home collection. They called out to me more than the familiar ones.


Attack of the Martians offered the chance to blow up UFOs!


The horror themed pinball corner was really fun. I made a lot of attempts to impress the Mistress of the Dark on Scared Stiff.


I wish I could have gotten more chances to play Mario Kart, but it was pretty popular.


Ground Kontrol is defiantly a good way to kill time if you enjoy gaming. I also found it to create new connections and understanding of how I experience video games. Home may seem the ideal place to play in, but the arcade has something more to offer.

Ground Kontrol is located in the Old Town Chinatown neighborhood of Portland, OR.

The Identical is a Colossally Confusing Failure of Cinema

The Identical (2014)

The Identical (2014) (7% on Rotten Tomatoes)

Starring: Ray Liotta, Ashley Judd, Blake Rayne, and lots of regret

Directed by: Dustin Marcellino




This is truly one of the worst films to come out of 2014. What makes The Identical all the more strange and offensive to watch is that it at least looks like a “real movie”, at least most of the time. With A-listers like Ray Liotta and Ashley Judd, an opening crane shot that screams “expensive”, and generally competent camera work, edit, and sound, the movie will fool your brain into thinking its going to be good. DO NOT LISTEN.
The Identical (2014) Fanart

Once you realize that this film is basically a vanity project for an Elvis impersonator to show you his “amazing musical talents”, bankrolled by church people, then it all starts to make a retarded sort of sense. Almost. The film is hobbled with a premise straight out of a 30 Rock sketch: What if Elvis had a twin brother who was adopted by an evangelical preacher and his barren wife? Er, did I say Elvis? I meant to say “Drexel Hemsley”. THAT’S RIGHT! This is a movie about Elvis, played by an Elvis impersonator, where they can’t say “Elvis” (except when they do accidentally) or feature any actual Elvis songs, I’m guessing because life-rights cost too much.

This shit is just too ridiculous…