Review Round-up: Madams! Savages! Wolves!
(YA) Review Round-up: Hacker, Paper Towns and Prep

He Said - She Said: Geek Confessions!

Tuesdays are good for ranting. We've decided to tackle a few thorny topics - and we apologise for advance if this is your last visit to the blog. We believe passionately in everyone's right to enjoy the stuff that they enjoy (hell, that's the core of being a geek), but some of it? We just don't get.

Here are a few things that we just don't get. What about you? Share your geek confessions in the comments. We promise not to judge. [Jared's note: unless someone disrespects The Secret History... oh wait.]

Battlestar-Galactica1. Battlestar Galactica. Now don't get me wrong, I love the board game. But I forced myself through the prequel movie and first season of the show and just didn't love it. And I've never had the smallest urge to start Season 2. Unlike my other tv show confession, I find that my regard for BSG is low in part because I find the writing heavy-handed and the acting often very shaky. (Anne)

2. Doctor Who. It is a little daunting to watch the internet explode with every new preview-teaser-trailer-leak-article-rumor but I think you need to be more British than I am to enjoy this show. Possibly more British than a vault full of scones. Waiting patiently in a queue. Outside Buckingham Palace. Wearing football scarves. Made of tweed. I did enjoy the Russell T. Davies era - the companions were fun, the Doctors were perkier and, even if the plots all resolved with Tinkerbell Jesus, I understood: this was a children's show. Now? No idea what I'm watching. Or why. (So I don't.) (Jared)

3. Donna Tartt's The Secret HistoryI enjoyed reading it, and I enjoyed rereading it, and I've recommended it to others. But I don't love it beyond the telling. I realize we're at the peak of our once-every-decade Donna Tartt mania right now, thanks to the recent publication of The Goldfinch, which I will eventually read and probably also enjoy. But, you know. I just don't think TSH is zomg the best book ever. (Anne)

4. Firefly. I know. It was taken from us by the bastards/gatekeepers/Man/forces-that-don't-appreciate-Whedon's-transcendent-genius. But also, no one was watching it. Don't get me wrong, I like the show, but it got the perfect concluding episode in "Out of Gas" (...then six episodes afterwards that were kind of ok). Against all odds of economics or sense, Firefly even got a movie: one explicitly constructed to wrap up all the meta-plot elements (River, Reavers, etc.) that no one actually liked in the first place. Show: resolved. Characters: resolved. Life: goes on. (Jared)

5. Breaking Bad. Oh my god, this probably isn't even geeky anymore. I simply can't get into the show. Like BSG, I simply haven't been able to develop an emotional attachment to the show to counterbalance how utterly grim it is. See, I love Mad Men, which is a similarly gorgeous, beautifully written, beautifully produced, slick, dark show. (Possibly slicker, but no less dark.) But I care about Don Draper and Peggy Olson in a way I don't find myself caring about Walter White and Jesse Pinkman. (Anne)

6. Random confession - I haven't played a game to completion in over 15 years. That was Master of Orion 2. I played the hell out of Diablo 2 in the early 2000s, but never actually completed it on every difficulty or got someone to Stupid Level. And since then? I've not finished a single game - not some £1.99 crap on my phone, not the occasional expensive thing I've bought since then, not even my occasional nostalgia-burst with Baldur's Gate. We even had a Wii for a few years - I think I played it a few dozen times - mostly for Madden (and I never finished a season). (Jared)

D&D 1st7. Legos: I liked them when I was a kid. During the brief period in which we owned a Wii, I liked playing Lego Indiana Jones very much. I've got a little Dr Henry Jones Sr. minifig keychain, even. But I don't get the obsessive love for Legos that runs so powerfully through the geek community. (Anne)

8. The 'Old School Renaissance' in gaming. I've played D&D and AD&D from the red box through to 4e, and, let me tell you: they all sucked. You deal with it. Good role-playing is about being inspired by the rules, not following them slavishly. And the older the edition: the more rules there are. 4e had some serious flaws but it was fast. It encouraged improvisation! We could fight! We could achieve things! We could move the plot forwards! In the same calendar year! You can't tell me that 1st edition is somehow the best system for interactive storytelling (or, wait, according to the chart on page 423, there's an 8% chance that you will. *rolls dice*). (The issues with 4e were more about the aesthetic; the way they changed the language and the philosophy to compete with video games, instead of making a great tabletop experience). Oh well. (Jared)

9. There's a metric fuck-ton of nostalgia that informs modern geek culture and I'm heartily tired of it. I mean, I lived through the 80s. The clothes were awful and the music worse. The 90s weren't much better. Yes, it's nice to rewatch movies I cared about as a kid, to reread favorite old books. I get a kick out of seeing people cosplaying Rainbow Bright and She-Ra, I really do. But good God, that's stuff I liked when I was five. There's so much good stuff out there right now for me to be obsessive about. Onward and upward! (Anne)

10. What she said. (Jared)

So, what about you? What trends are passing you by? What are your geek confessions?