A Copywriter’s Blog

Elephant and World leave citing “irreconcilable differences”

TV LAND- It’s not surprising that Animal Planet, a network that’s been around for over a decade, decided it was time to update it’s logo. What is surprising are the circumstances surrounding that change.
Previously, spokescreatures for the station said they wanted to try a new logo that would show how “fresh and exciting” the new line-up would be. However, anonymous insiders have now told us the true reason for the change: Animal Planet is an alcoholic.
“In the beginning, it was a new logo. Hell, it was a brand new network.” said Kristen Lynman, the Elephant’s spokeswoman, “Animal Planet used to be all about the work. But lately it seems like it’s been nothing but parties.”
According to anonymous sources, “Animal Planet” has been drinking for years. It finally reached the point where Elephant and Earth weren’t willing to deal with it anymore. Rather than risk a scandal, the network decided to just unveil a new “streamlined” logo.
“I think most people will see through it pretty quick,” said one network executive, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “I mean, look at him there. Look at the ‘M’. If you ask me, Elephant and Earth were the backbone of this station.”
While there has been no official response from the network at this time, it seems pretty obvious that the logo has seen better days.
“Look at the ‘M’,” repeated our source, “This….this is like the Britney Spears of typography.”

I bet MacGyver had days like this Ben Levy 19, February

Some you know that I have been trying to save the world from the quasi-zombie invasion that is Resident Evil 4 since late December. A particularly….poignant moment occurred last night, and I felt it worthy of recounting. (Mild spoilers below)

It’s very late in the game, and I had just viewed a cut scene in which the main character (Leon) had turned quasi zombie and tried to eat a friend’s face off. I was moving towards a save point when I heard the heavy, raspy breathing of a Regenerator.

However, this one was a long way off, and I had plenty of time. “Strange,” I thought to myself “they’ve made this pretty easy.” I went to raise the rifle to my shoulder, and Leon stopped.

So the Regenerator keeps moving towards me. And Leon’s just standing there with his rifle at his side. “Holy shit,” I thought, already anticipating the need to change my shorts. “I bet this regenerator’s calling out to the zombie in me or something. Leon’ll probably have to fight the hold it has over him to regain control.” Any second now the command to hit “A+B” or “wave the wii-mote wildly” will free up my body. Any second now. Wow, this thing is close. Holy shit it’s right on top of me! FUCK!

And then, Leon shifted his shoulder.

Not in a “must heroically battle mind-altering zombie!” way. More like a “no one’s pressed any buttons, so I’ll just loop my ’standing’ animation” kind of way. He was waiting for commands.

This wasn’t some demonic ploy on the game developer’s part.

This wasn’t a brilliant plot device in the game

My fucking wii-mote batteries died.

Screaming obscenities to a g-d I didn’t believe in (I’m Jewish, so yelling “Jesus Christ” is just a funny joke for us) I chucked the controller to the side of the couch and dove for the 2nd player wii-mote my wife had left on the coffee table. I grabbed it, rolled twice on the ground, and ended up on my stomach, holding the wii-mote out in front of me and snapping off shots like a crazy man. My long blond locks flowing dramatically in the breeze; my chiseled, muscular body heaving with emotion. 7 rifle and 3 shotgun shells (for good measure) later , it was all over.

UPDATE: Tonight, it happened again. You would have thought, after last night, I’d have replaced the batteries. You would be wrong. But this time I figured it out faster. Also, I’ve just saved the world (read: beaten the game). You’re all welcome.

Except you Duracell.


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Hollywood is trying to kill me Ben Levy 18, February

I ran across this on IMDB. It details the intended rape of my childhood. If they actually built a time machine, went back to 1987, found my old GI Joes, and forced them up my tiny, white, 4-yr old asshole, it would still not be as complete a rape as this…this… giant cinematic dildo they intend to wreak upon the earth.

This shit is so wrong, I can’t possibly write about it without wanting to kill. And so I will liberally sprinkle this posting with the sacred, hallowed imagery of my childhood. Know, dear reader, that each time you see a pic, it means that which follows is a detail of unspeakable foulness. We begin…

This is what IMDB had to say about it:

Stephen Sommers will direct (here’s hoping he reigns in the CG), from a script by Stuart Beattie. The story is set at Brussels-based GIJOE, an acronym for the Global Integrated Joint Operating Entity, and revolves around an international co-ed force of operatives who use high-tech equipment to battle Cobra, an evil org headed by a Scottish arms dealer.

Just reading this fills me with such hate, its nigh indescribable. I won’t even try. I’m just going to count the ways this is wrong:

  1. GI Joe is a real AMERICAN hero you bastards. They’re more American than hamburgers, and yes I damn well do appreciate the irony in that statement. So take your “globally integrated joint triple redundant acronym” and stuff it.
  2. Look Mr Beattie (or as I shall henceforth call him, satan) you didn’t get the movie’s name right, so I don’t expect you to follow canon. But that “scottish arms dealer” is Destro. He never lead Cobra (except for those three times when he did). Cobra Commander leads Cobra. You might have been able to figure this out by the fact that his title is Commander. But I’m probably expecting too much.
  3. Last time I checked, there’s no Brussels in the US. Now I’m a true American, unlike Mr Somer and Mr Satan, which means my tenuous grasp of geography is so terrible I still believe the world is flat, and that countries are color-coded when you fly over them. But even I know Brussels isn’t in America. See point 1 of this list.

Ahhh….that’s better. I’ll level with you, I actually found out about this a week ago. But it’s taken me this long to be able to write about it without simultaneously spitting Hate and Rage (Hage) all over my monitor.

Let’s look at the cast list shall we? Hmmm….Dennis Quaid is General Hawk? Insert generic rant of hate here. First off, Hawk did next to nothing in the series. He was there mostly to scream at Flint, who was the actual leader. The one leading people into hails of bullets. He also scored with Lady Jay. Did you ever see Hawk score with Lady Jay? No. Therefore, Hawk doesn’t need to be in this movie, and neither does Quaid.

Flint’s not even in this travesty. Ok, who is included in “the film that must not be”. Snake Eyes? I hope you all die horrible, horrible deaths.

“But Ben,” you’re saying, “Snake-Eyes is the best character of all time! He could save this movie! The mighty power of the uber-ninja is just strong enough that he could save the entire world (from this film)!”

Yes gentle reader, that is true. But look at who’s playing him. No don’t look, that was rhetorical. The guy is crap. If it was Tony Ja, then there would be the vaguest possibility that it would be ok. That those going to the theaters would not rip out their seat cushions and attempt to swallow them whole as a means of making the pain stop. In fact, I know they picked the wrong person to play Snake-Eyes because unless they picked the re-animated corpse of Bruce Lee himself, there is no person on earth bad-ass enough to play Snake-eyes. And any of you who said Chuck Norris? You’re dead to me.

In conclusion, Hollywood is clearly trying to kill me of a massive coronary. Why else would they do this? We have a GI Joe movie, you heartless bastards, and it isn’t half bad. Not enough Snake Eyes for my taste, but still. What you’re doing is terrible, unnecessary, and has to break at least four tenants of the Geneva convention.

In a way, I feel horrible for staining the Broken JPG with this filth. It’s like trying to warn you of the apocalypse- no matter how early you’re told, you can’t avoid it. Seriously, I just looked it up, the four horsemen are plague, death, pokemon, and a live-action GI Joe movie set to air in 2009.

The coolest hoodie I never bought Ben Levy 10, February

Today in urban outfitters, I found this. This is awesome. The picture doesn’t show why it’s awesome. In fact, it doesn’t show much of anything. Had the fashion photographer snapped their digital shutter on a pile of steaming dog poop, it would have intrigued you more than this photo.

But I digress.

This is a hoodie with various ninjas screen printed on the torso. In general, it is hard to go wrong with ninjas. Upon holding the garment up, I discover it is a “full zip hoodie”. For the uninitiated, this means the zipper goes from hem to forehead. In most cases, this is retarded, because why would you ever want to walk around in a cotton cocoon? But in this case, the hood had eyeholes. Ninja eyeholes. This garment was literally a ninja suit, festooned with ninjas, that granted the wearer the ability to gird themself in darkness at the pull of a zipper! Genius! That is at least three times the ninja any other garment in my wardrobe gives me. As if that were not enough, a loop was sewn inside that had a pair of nunchuks screen printed behind it. Just so there’s no misunderstanding, it came with nunchuk holders. Everything I’ve done in life up until now has been in anticipation of this moment. It was a medium-the exact general size that I myself am. I must own this article.

From here the story goes downhill. It’s not because I already own a fair number of hoodies. And if when fully zipped my face started turning blue, well I’m sure that’s an ancient camouflage technique. No, the real reason I didn’t get the hoodie is because I’m Jewish.

As a (semi)-devout Jew, there are three ways that I commonly practice my religion. One is to keep kosher, the second is to refrain from doing work on the Sabbath, and the third is to refuse to spend more than $45 on a hoodie. And I am a much sadder and less invisible man for it.

Yes We Can. Ben Levy 6, February

Have you seen this? Will.I.Am, of BlackEyed Peas fame, created a music video inspired by a speech Barack Obama delivered in New Hampshire. There are so many things that are fantastic about this. From the art direction, to the ridiculous number of cameos, to the fact that the lyrics are- literally- the speech of a politician. Just watch it. This made me feel something.