When not writing about himself in third person, Barry enjoys exploring the areas where literature, film and gaming overlap with psychology and philosophy

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    The double narrative of Critical Role

    Spoilers for the end of Critical Role – Vox Machina.

    Is the success of Critical Role purely due to the story of the PCs in the world created by the DM, or as I would suggest, is part of the attraction getting a glimpse into the relationships of a group of charismatic individuals?

    By no means am I suggesting that watching these individuals play D&D for 4 hours a week provides any real insight into the reality of their lives. However, I do think there are glimpses into the people behind the characters that at times is as entertaining as the show itself.

    The best example I can think of is the final fight of the first campaign between the PCs and Vecna. The game story was awesome, but as some commentators have pointed out, watching the visceral reaction of Sam Riegel when he chose to stop the BBEG instead of his friend was just as, if not more, engrossing.

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      For me, I think the people behind the DC films are both trying too hard to be “serious” superhero movies while simultaneously comparing themselves to the Marvel films.

      Avengers 2012 vs Justice League 2017: A Lesson in Narrative Storytelling

      The key problem I’ve always had with the rhetoric around a female Doctor (the possibility has been discussed online for years now) is the suggestion that all males nerd egos are as fragile as the worst amongst us. Why have little boys lost a role model? Why can’t a woman be a role-model for a pre-pubescent male? Why can’t a woman be a role-model for an adult male?
      Maybe I’m the outlier, but as a straight, white male who is happily married I grew up idolising characters like Ripley (finding the strength not to give up; Aliens), Faith (working for redemption for our mistakes; Buffy) and Scully (valuing evidence over belief; X-Files) just as much as I did any male hero.
      I can’t wait for a new Doctor. If I love the new regeneration or I hate it, I sincerely doubt it will have anything to do with the gender.

      A Female #doctor13: Why the Controversy?

      Personally, I actually really like the FF and think it has potential. But, the reason I like the FF isn’t their origin story or even necessarily their power-sets (although I do actually like those too) it’s the potential drama associated with a family of adventurers mixed with superpowers.
      For me, the FF are at their best when the family dynamic is highlighted in extreme and fantastic situations. The FF don’t need an entire movie to tell their origin story. A quick Incredible Hulk style montage would be enough. Then, tell an adventure story that puts them in situations where the focus is on the family drama and you’ll have a winner. Or, as half the internet loves to say; the best FF film made was The Incredibles.

      The Superhero Origin... Again?