Tag Archive | Television

Media Matters: Peaceful days died. Let’s Survive

This feature can also be found at the South West Londoner, here.

Even with my busy schedule, I still try to squeeze in some gaming time. My current vice on Nintendo 3DS right now is Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked.

 It’s actually something of an old game – it was originally released as just Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor in Japan and America back in 2009, but never saw a UK release. Overclocked is a re-release for the 3DS, but due to publishing issues, it took a whole two years between the Japanese release and ours, released on the March 29.

The game details an unlikely disaster scenario – a large section of Tokyo is suddenly cordoned off by the armed forces. The government say it’s due to a poison gas leak, but the thousands trapped inside the danger zone know the truth – it’s an invasion of bloodthirsty demons. Knowing that death is constantly around the corner, they try to survive the lockdown for a week, assuming they don’t find a way of escaping. The game’s tagline says it all: “Peaceful days died. Let’s Survive.”

It’s a story that’s surprisingly easy to relate to. Not so much the demons (although the mythology nerd in me appreciates that), but in the character interaction. The main character is rather plain, but his friends and the other survivors he encounters each have their own concerns and different motivations for trying to escape… or stay.

It got me thinking: if I was in a similar disaster area, would I be able to survive? Lord knows how many fellow nerds made zombie survival plans in light of that now overplayed and overrated horror trope.

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Media Matters: The 7 o’clock news with Shaquille O’Neal

 This feature can also be found at the South West Londoner, here.

The other day, I was in a conversation on the internet about the development of an indie video game. The main characters were to have voice actors, and it just so happened one of the cast was a black guy.

The number of people who suddenly yelled “He should be voiced by Samuel L. Jackson!” was overwhelming.

It made me wonder about the presence of black actors in major releases these days. Setting aside that the internet is filled with idiots, is Samuel L. Jackson the only option Hollywood has for ‘the black guy’?
 
Well, no, I’m being hyperbolic – we also have Will Smith. If the role requires someone older, or a narrator, Morgan Freeman’s usually the port of call.

There are others (no need to bring up each name of every rapper who’s turned a hand to film, for example), but they’re very rarely cut out for anything other than a comedy relief role.

If Hollywood needs a British black actor for whatever reason, they’re stuck. Ocean’s Twelve had to settle for Don Cheadle putting on a disgustingly poor Cockney accent.

That’s not to say that there’s a total dearth of black actors out there, it’s just that they often don’t seem to get the kind of high profile exposure that other actors of a similar (or even worse) skill level get.

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