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October 12th, 2012

100! 100 strips! (Insert some laughing by Sesame Street's Count.)

This is the one hundredth Nerd Rage strip (if go ahead and include the two strips I don't really consider Nerd Rage). This comic is a throwback to the very first one. Prometheus has been, incidentally, an important part of Nerd Rage. A terrible series of George Lucas/Episode 1 jokes (no, seriously, they're bad. I feel bad when people have to start from the beginning) evolved into the standard cast for what would become a webcomic I poop out every week. I then mentioned Prometheus again in this strip, this time about Elliott being excited.

It left me in an awkward place when the actual movie came out. I'm not a fan of writing comics that spoil events in the movie. I'd also just finished a multi-comic arc about Jim and Elliott going to see The Avengers, so I really hated to jump right back in to those two watching a movie. Before seeing it, I'd settled on a concept of the Ancient Aliens guy being part of the mission, in the event I couldn't think of something funnier and spoiler-free after actually viewing the film.

But the actual movie was really divisive! You either love it or you hate it. A lot of the internet hates it. And if the internet hates it, I like to hit the concept with Nerd Rage.

So the Bluray/DVD release was the perfect excuse to come back to it -- and just in time to celebrate the hundredth comic. No sooner did the we finish one movie with an extensive viral campaign, but a new one started: "What is 10-11-12?" The short answer is that it's the in-universe date that Weyland Industries became a company. It was also a date set several days after the 10-09-12 release date for Prometheus's DVD/Bluray release. What would this mysterious campaign lead up to?

Fox strung us along with the mysteries and videos and a couple convention events. The marketing campaign for the DVD boldly claimed "Questions will be answered."

Then it fizzled out. On 10-11-12 'Weyland Industries' sent out a coupon for $5 off the bluray if you ordered through Fox. Two days after the film had been released and many had already purchased it.

Does the DVD deliver these fabled answers? I guess. Maybe. No, not really. There are some deleted scenes, but nothing that's going to fundamentally change the movie. Those who were unhappy with the film the first time around will not be likely to change their mind over some special features.

No what did I think?

I'm one of the few that enjoyed the movie. I went to go see it twice. The way I see it, it's not a movie about answers -- it's a movie about not getting answers, a movie about questions. A large part of the movie is that no one gets the answer they want (the characters -- well, I suppose the viewers too.) It looks nice, Ridley Scott creates incredible worlds. There are a couple good 'scary' scenes. There's some good body horror. Michael Fassbender plays a very interesting robot.

I can overlook characters behaving stupidly, because if everyone behaves the way you should in a horror movie, no one gets eaten by the monster. And if you start scrutinizing the original Alien for scientific detail, it doesn't exactly hold up. Take it for what it is.

The movie set itself up to do something difficult: be an Alien horror movie, but be before Alien. Prequels, by definition, must explain more of what happened before the first plot. Horror movies, by definition, work better with less details. The more you know about the monster, the less scary it becomes. The most interesting aspect of the Space Jockey in Alien was that you knew nothing about it, and it was never explained. Scott erred on the side of not answering questions, and viewers are upset. If he had midichlorian'd and nanomachine'd every aspect of Alien, I wonder if fans would have been as happy as they claim. Personally, I'd still love to see Jon Spaihts original script.

Last week I mentioned I wouldn't be posting on Reddit until further notification. Consider this further notification. After several weeks of absence, Reddit has undone the ban on my account.

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