[Drift #42]

Amazon has a long tradition of unreasonable, miserable and occasionally downright cretinous user reviews. The Twitter feed @AmznMovieRevws is a treasure trove of some of the silliest of these.

For this episode Sharon and I got together with former Digital Cowboy Paul Shotton and Cane and Rinse alumni Josh Garrity and we had a bit of a game. I passed out fifteen reviews each and we competed for fifteen rounds to see who could read the most facepalm-inducing nugget of critical appraisal. 

Prepare thy sides, for they shall split. Some of these reviewers come up with the most splutteringly random of reasons why they don't like movies that are largely agreed upon to be rather great. I shall definitely be revisiting this format. 

Be sure to find us, follow us, like us and email us.
Facebook: www.facebook.com/digitaldriftuk
Twitter: @DigitalDriftUK
Email: digitaldriftuk@gmail.com
Website: www.digitaldrift.co.uk

And if you like the work we put out the best way to support us is going to...
New Century Patreon: www.patreon.com/newcentury

Direct download: 42._Bad_Reviews_Against_Humanity.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 9:25 AM

[Drift #41]

This is the third and final of a series of podcasts about GamerGate; How it developed, what its effects have been and how we can move forwards.

In the previous two shows we heard perspectives from 17 different people from the gaming community

This week is a conversation between myself Alex Shaw and Leelee Scaldaferri. 

We start off with a brilliant presentation from The Idea Channel on five logical fallacies that frequently occur during arguments on the internet. If you've already heard this and don't want a refresher, jump to minute 14 for the main show. 

Next week my guests and co-hosts read through one star reviews of great movies. The results are genuinely hilarious. I think we all need that right now.

Direct download: 41._GamerGate_-_Vol._3.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 9:05 AM

[Drift #40]


This is the second of a series of podcasts about GamerGate; How it developed, what its effects have been and how we can move forwards.

Nine more contributions make up this episode. Some were in response to Volume 1, some elaborated on ideas laid down in that one, others were simply inspired to speak on hearing about this series. 

For this show only one man wished to remain anonymous, the other eight were; Jo Wike, Nick Gibson, Laura Kate Dale, Lorin Grieve, Rose Lynn, Jesse Ferguson, Laureta Sela and a man who goes only by the name of Chris.

Gamergate Volume 3 will be out next week and is a conversation between myself Alex Shaw and Leelee Scaldaferri. That will round out the series and as of today i am no longer taking submissions for this project. I'm proud of how it's turned out and the measured, intelligent response from pretty much every listener who has commented. 

Direct download: 40._GamerGate_-_Vol._2.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 6:24 PM

Originally Published October 30th 2009.

Guest: James Portnow.

For this week's episode, while I collect and edit more of your MP3 contributions for GamerGate Vol. 2 I went back to an early episode of my first podcast, Digital Cowboys.

In this show, my co-host Tony Atkins and I asked James Portnow if there was perhaps a more appropriate word for games and indeed "Gamer" for what we currently know as video games and people who like them a whole lot. It's easy to say this needs to change and equally easy to say that the labels shouldn't matter/does no harm/isn't relevant. What followed was the kind of thing I love about our community and the people in it, a frank, honest and fascinating discussion about this concept that goes beyond these two open and shut responses.

That was five years ago, but it's detestably even more important now than it was then. By all means join the debate on the forum.

This was originally inspired by an article written on Gamasutra by Tynan Sylvester. 

Next week, more GamerGate and the week after, something fun that will make you laugh, I promise.

If you haven't seen James Portnow's Extra Credits yet, get yourself over there for some of the best lectures and lessons in video gaming design and culture that have ever been committed to the internet.

And if you haven't heard my former co-host's podcast; Cane and Rinse you equally need to go listen to that show for some of the most thought-provoking games discussion around. 

Be sure to find us, follow us, like us and email us.
Facebook: www.facebook.com/digitaldriftuk
Twitter: @DigitalDriftUK
Email: digitaldriftuk@gmail.com
Website: www.digitaldrift.co.uk

And if you like the work we put out the best way to support us is going to...
New Century Patreon: www.patreon.com/newcentury

Direct download: 128._The_Word_Gamer.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 10:40 AM

[Drift #39]

To kick off a discussion about "nanar"; that is movies that are so spectacularly bad that they wrap right the way round into great we bring you the podcast reviews of Troll and Troll 2. This also constitutes our Halloween Spooktacular and gives you all something fun to listen to while taking shelter from the GamerGate debate.

Troll was a daft fantasy horror movie made in 1986. It's hard to say who it's aimed at because it's too scary for small children and too silly for anyone over the age of nine. It has inflections of Gremlins and Poltergeist but none of the style or craftsmanship. There are plenty of surprising and appealing nuggets of fun to be had amongst the weird "troll-menaces-apartment-block" plot and some disarmingly canny performances to boot, but ultimately this was one of those films made to be forgotten.

Until Troll 2 came along in 1990 that is. This isn't a sequel of any sort. It was originally going to be called "Goblins" and the name was changed so as to purposefully be confused with the mildly successful Troll. Now that's the sort of creative pedigree that makes us sit up and take notice. Dig even further into this green gloop and you'll find it is one of the most incompetently constructed movies ever, with every single scene botched in some way and some world class overacting and delivery by the hysterical cast. The short of it is; Family goes on a house exchange to a town in Utah named "Nilbog" turns out it's full of goblins. They like to eat people after turning them partly into vegetable matter. Also the boy has the Shining or something. Clickety clack.  

It has in recent times been rediscovered and cherished by a select group of fans celebrating its sheer badness. A documentary by its now grown up child star; "Best Worst Movie" was made in 2010 and is available on Netflix UK. In it we re-acquaint ourselves with the oddball cast reflecting back on when they took part in this extraordinary project. The brilliant review podcast "We Hate Movies" won't cover Troll 2, because in their words, what are they going to say that's funnier than anything within this film? We had to at least try since in the UK this is not infamous and is barely even known. That's an injustice we'd like to redress.

Don't worry about seeing these first. Listen to the show to get a feel and then track down the R1 double DVD set if it sounds like your thing. 

It also leads to a discussion about nanar film and whether or not it is possible to make one on purpose, with a wonderful little inspirational piece on that subject from The Idea Channel, which you should be watching every week. 

Be sure to find us, follow us, like us and email us.
Facebook: www.facebook.com/digitaldriftuk
Twitter: @DigitalDriftUK
Email: digitaldriftuk@gmail.com
Website: www.digitaldrift.co.uk

And if you like the work we put out the best way to support us is going to...
New Century Patreon: www.patreon.com/newcentury

Direct download: 39._Troll__Troll_2.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 10:13 PM

[Drift #38]

This is the first of a series of podcasts about GamerGate; How it developed, what its effects have been and how we can move forwards.

Anyone is welcome to send in an MP3 of up to ten minutes for future shows. The one proviso is that this is not a platform for hate, it’s about generating discussion. Talk about your experiences, what you have seen and heard and how that makes you feel, how this affects the industry and the communities around it, and most importantly what we can do to move forwards. I'm deadly serious about this and it's going to require some brave people to speak up. I've listened to no podcasts cover this, certainly not in this format and there are obvious reasons why not, but a lot of people are feeling isolated, excluded, harassed, angry, exhausted and in some cases terrified. If that's not an important talking point I don't know what is.

Over the next few weeks I’ll hopefully be airing a wide variety of views. Get in touch via Twitter or the forum if you’d like in on this.  For the first show I had eight contributors, two of whom would like to remain anonymous, the other six were; M.P.J. Dillon, Holly Dotson, Gavin Greene, A. Reece England, Livio De La Cruz and Kevin Murphy. 

Gamergate Volume 2 will be out next week and composed of all the MP3s that you guys send to me over the next few days, along with some more extensive thoughts on my part. Many thanks to my contributors for sharing with all of us.   

Direct download: 38._GamerGate_-_Vol._1.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 2:21 PM

[Drift #37]

The Transformers road trip comes to a triumphant end as we close out our Prime conversation in unusual circumstances, discussing a group of characters who have struggled since 1984 to be expressed as anything other than thugs or buffoons, The Decepticons, Turns out all it took to portray them as a group of warriors with their own motivations, weaknesses, misgivings and strengths was decent writing, building upon both well-established characters finally given dimensions of personality and newcomers who swiftly became fan favourites. It's been a wild ride through the Transformers series, but I'm very happy we could end on such a high note.

Joining us once again are Mike Hearn of Walter the Wicked web-comic (I'm a patron of his webcomic http://www.patreon.com/Wicked?ty=a), Neil Taylor and Jerome McIntosh of GameBurst and Andrew Pidhajeckyk of the Digital Drift Community. 

Next week, we celebrate Halloween in style with a pair of notorious creature features; Troll & Troll 2, the latter of which is considered by many to be the best worst movie ever made. 

Be sure to find us, follow us, like us and email us.
Facebook: www.facebook.com/digitaldriftuk
Twitter: @DigitalDriftUK
Email: digitaldriftuk@gmail.com
Website: www.digitaldrift.co.uk

And if you like the work we put out the best way to support us is going to...
New Century Patreon: www.patreon.com/newcentury

Direct download: 37._Transformers_Prime_Part_2_-_Decepticons.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 8:24 AM

[Drift #36]

The Transformers road trip finally emerges from the ugly, industrial wasteland and like Outrun we find ourselves suddenly experiencing a completely different and altogether more fascinating vista.

Yes, this animated TV show, passed up by the majority of adults as being for the kids just happens to be the greatest depiction of the Autobots and Decepticons ever committed to any medium. Freed of the obligation to deliver spectacle whilst somehow keeping the robots to a minimum this production team somehow manage to capture everything we loved about Generation 1 with the best bits from the movies, shows, comics and games in between. 

Focus is on companionship between the Autobots and the human teenagers they are protecting, with the kids giving perspective to the bots and vice versa. The Decepticons are no longer snarling hyper-aggressive insectoids but a charismatic, entertaining team in their own right. Starscream reaches his full potential to become a scheming metal Iago, Soundwave somehow manages to be even more creepy NOT speaking and  Megatron goes from being the one-dimensional byword for tedious head villain to a genuinely frightening and compelling warmonger.

As for the Autobots, Bulkhead and Bumblebee take their cues from the Iron Giant and R2-D2, Ratchet is played by the Re-Animator himself, Jeffrey Combs like a transfroming Doctor McCoy, guarded warrior Arcee is described on this very show as being like Trinity but less robotic and Peter Cullen turns in his best grave, powerful performance as Optimus, finally being given the kind of things to say and do that make you remember why he's the leader you'd follow into robot hell and back.

It's so good we did two shows on it, covering first Autobots and then Decepticons over Season 1. We've saved the big spoilers for the end of the second show so you really should listen at least that far and then get hold of these. 

Joining us are Mike Hearn of Walter the Wicked web-comic who provided us with stunning Transformers artwork for the website (Visit his Patreon here), Neil Taylor and Jerome McIntosh of GameBurst and Andrew Pidhajeckyk of the Digital Drift Community. 

Be sure to find us, follow us, like us and email us.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/digitaldriftuk
Twitter: @DigitalDriftUK
Email: digitaldriftuk@gmail.com
Website: www.digitaldrift.co.uk

New Century Patreon: www.patreon.com/newcentury

Direct download: 36._Transformers_Prime_Part_1_-_Autobots.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 9:27 AM

[Drift #35]

The Transformers road trip has lost all but one lone, solitary truck, powering on through a new leg of what may be a never-ending journey.

Yes folks, I did end up going to see Transformers 4, and on this show, Sharon asks me all about my experience. 

Is this a new lease of life for the series? A soft reboot, ditching the former human cast members in favour of all-new ones and setting aside awkward frat comedy for the dilemma of a struggling family. [Sounds great.] Still written by Ehren Kruger and now starring Mark Wahlberg [Oh Jesus Christ!]. The autobots are now a hunted, endangered species, thanks to their heroic genocide of their own people in the last movie, done in the name of protecting us humans, with our interminable capacity for greatness. Plus it has the dinobots [No it doesn't]. And Optimus is seriously suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder [Nobody ever mentions it]. Is this better or worse than the first three? Find out right now. 

I do something with Michael Bay halfway through that will surprise you. 

Next pit-stop we are rejoined by a full cast as we delve into the best depiction of these bots in any medium, the animated show, Transformers Prime. Even if you haven't seen it, have no immediate interest or don't want it spoiled we still suggest you listen as the depth, subtlety and character focus we describe in detail will surprise and delight you, leaving everyone wondering why that can never be their big screen representation.

I also start this week's episode with a major announcement regarding this year's annual donation drive.

Be sure to find us, follow us, like us and email us.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/digitaldriftuk
Twitter: @DigitalDriftUK
Email: digitaldriftuk@gmail.com
Website: www.digitaldrift.co.uk

Direct download: 35._Transformers_Age_of_Extinction.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 9:04 AM

A rather significant announcement about one of the most important weeks of my professional career. 

Direct download: Alexs_Patreon_Announcement.mp3
Category:Podcast -- posted at: 8:25 PM



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