Saturday, February 20, 2010

CROSSTOPIX #0: The Pilot (2 of 3)

Welcome Back to CrossTopix! Here are the next three questions in this glorious debate! If you missed part 1, click here to read it:

4.) Sega has recently revealed Project Needlemouse is really Sonic the Hedgehog 4, a true direct sequel to the popular Sega Genesis titles. Will this Sonic title be the needed fix for the recent negative opinion of the Sonic the Hedgehog titles? Will it live up to being a true sequel? (Check out the small, yet awesome trailer here! )

STVO: Being a BIG fan of the original Sega Genesis series, I am pretty thrilled about this decision. Some people, previously myself included, consider Sonic and Knuckles to be the fourth true Sonic game, but looking back it was more of an extension for Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Sonic 3. Looking at Sonic 3 and Sonic and Knuckles together, they seem more like they’re two halves of one really great Sonic game! To me though, the truth is that this won’t fix the Sonic series (not right away at least.) Capcom and Nintendo have found some great success recently with MegaMan and Mario playing closer to their 8-bit counterparts (Capcom is even making MegaMan 10 this year!), but Sega has had somewhat of a negative track record with their titles in recent history. No I’m not saying it will suck, but they will have to do some good promotion for this title and if they want to make big money with their retail Sonic titles (Sonic 4 will be a download-game on Xbox Arcade, PSNetwork, and WiiWare) they will have to really step it up. I’m very excited for Sonic 4 and hope the best, but it will take a lot of time to win back old fans.

Charlie Cat: YES!!! This has been long awaited. A true follow up to the Sonic franchise! This one will pick up where Sonic and Knuckles (really just an extension of Sonic 3) left off and continue with Dr. Robotnik causing mayhem and exacting revenge on our beloved heroic blue hedgehog. Sonic just did not flourish in the 3-D realm or in side games unlike his long time marketing enemy/now brother? Mario. Sonic worked best on a 2-D plane with beautiful backgrounds that you could either fly by or slow down and enjoy while doing all the small things: bashing baddies to save innocent little animals, collecting rings, or getting goodies out of the boxes that can be busted open. The only thing I hope for is that the game sticks to the old format of every level(zone) being two stages with second ending in a boss fight with a cool yet destructive machine controlled by Dr. Robotnik, er, Eggman. Wait! Isn't that giant egg bad guy from the old Batman and Robin show, played by Vincent Price (holy lame villain reference Charlie Cat!) I also hope for Tails and Knuckles to come back and be playable! It's interesting that this is a download and not a disk release. This tactic and the debut trailer of going through Sonic's history, briefly, is definitely a play for the generation who got the best of Sonic. And I am ready to welcome him back with arms wide open. OUCH! I forgot how spiky he is...

5.) A new decade has arrived and TV made some drastic changes going from the 1990s to the 2000s (i.e. more reality shows and talent contests became popular on television, family sitcoms weren’t on network primetime, laugh tracks are being taken out of some shows, etc.) What are some changes/additions you’d like to see arrive on the primetime network scenes this decade?

STVO: Well I see NBC has an open 9 PM (central) slot after the Winter Olympics. Since Jay Leno is going back to the Tonight Show, how about an hour show for CrossTopix? NBC will jump to No. 1 in NO TIME! I’m just kidding, but getting serious here, I really hope we see far less reality shows on network TV or just in general. 3D television will be neat and I’m sure that we’ll get some fun experiences around 2015 or later. With that said, with the success of Avatar proving that animation can work (sure it is live action too, but I think people were more entertained by the animated scenes), how about a series that does push computer animation in an action/adventure type of setting? Something else I’d like to see is Fox pick up animated comedies that don’t involve families, something more in the lines of Mission Hill or The Critic.
On the non-animated front, it may sound corny, but how about some more family sitcoms? Perhaps some without laugh tracks? NBC was very successful with the Cosby Show and Fresh Prince, maybe they just need to look back at what made them successful (no, not do remakes like they did with Bionic Woman or Knight Rider) and give it consideration. Also, I’m always entertained by good action dramas like Law and Order, CSI, Heroes, House, among others.

Charlie Cat: The 90's were a better time for TV viewing than this past decade. I mostly watch MLB games, NBA games, and the shows “Fringe” and “Dexter”. Some changes I would like to see happen this coming decade are cutting back on the reality TV (yeah I know, dream on). I cannot stand it. What “Survivor” started and “American Idol” helped make the American pastime of television is something I cannot stand. Also, there needs to be a lot less medical and law/crime investigation shows. They DOMINATE what's on the tube. “House” and some of the “Law and Order” shows are acceptable but the rest just irritate and are recycled versions of “Law and Order”, “CSI”, and “ER”. It's even harder to get into shows because more are serial than ever before. You have to see episode 1 of season 1 and every episode thereafter or you're lost.

6.) Let’s pretend you’re the big executive producer of the Spider-Man movie series: This year’s situation of Sam Raimi (director) and Toby McGuire (actor playing Spider-Man) leaving the production of Spider-Man 4 applies to you. Do you instruct the crew to cast and create a sequel to the current franchise or do you decide to start the series from scratch and reboot the series like they’re going to be doing? Feel free to add how you’d move the story along.

STVO: I would attempt a sequel personally. There are flaws to using a different director and of course many fans are never happy when an actor or multiple actors are replaced, but rebooting the franchise this is early is ridiculous as all three movies were smashing box office hits and unlike most people, I liked Spider-Man 3. It had its flaws (emo Spider-Man) but it did have strong storytelling with The Sandman. I don’t want to go spoiler-crazy, but I think they could have continued with Venom in a sequel and personally, that’s what I would do! First off, it’s been said and is evident that Sam Raimi was NOT a fan of Venom, so that’s one quality I would like for the next director, a fan of comics and one that actually enjoyed Venom! Topher Grace did not fit Venom by voice or appearance, I don’t know which actor to cast but it would be a bulkier guy who can pull off a good mean guy attitude. I’d have the story follow-up from the other three movies but I would try to give it a new feel. The story would be one that doesn’t focus on depression, identity crises, or love triangles; rather my story would have the feeling of an ultimate grudge match, Spider-Man vs. Venom, Peter Parker vs. Eddie Brock. I’d either do that or a Maximum Carnage storyline where Carnage would debut and more details of the black goo from Spider-Man 3. Now if I was forced to do a reboot, I wouldn’t go with Green Goblin or Venom right away, instead, I’d make the first villain Lizard as I feel he's a popular villain and with Pete being back in high school, it would be great to have one of his teachers become a supervillain.

Charlie Cat: I think it is a terrible idea to reboot the Spiderman franchise. The Batman franchise needed one because of the mess it had finally become at Batman and Robin and almost a decade had pass since that release. Spiderman 3 was not a mess of a situation like Batman and Robin. Just get a new director to move forward with the current continuity and a new actor. I think Ryan Gossling would make a perfect Peter Parker/Spiderman. Here is how I would move forward in the story aspect of things. They already had been setting up the Lizard with introduction of Peter's one armed science teacher, Dr. Connors, who is the Lizard in the comics. But I want a director who loves Venom, unlike Mr. Raimi. This fourth installment should explore the origins of the venom substance and bring him back. I would also like to see him played by Sam Worthington. He is more of a Brock than Topher Grace was. And then somehow Carnage gets in the mix, I think would be best played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Rebooting a huge superhero franchise this soon would be horrible. They can't reuse the villains that have already been done, it is too soon. It's just easier to keep the series running as is with a new director and actor.

That is all for the questions. Tune in soon for CrossACTION!!!!

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