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Benny

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Posts posted by Benny

  1. The guy who created that really tough Mario Maker is back, anyone fancy taking on the new hardest level ever made? :

    Course ID: 6059-0000-005E-4FB5

    Just watching that I know I can't do it, I don't even know how people can play the game like that, it's not human :lol:

    Fuck. That.

  2. Like my top 20 games list, many of these are personal favourites rather than what I would call the truly greatest TV shows ever, but that's the fun thing about these lists: hopefully other people can discover some greats they may have missed. Anyway, it was so hard to narrow it down but:


    1. The West Wing


    Truly unbelievable writing from Aaron Sorkin. It takes a while to get sucked in, but even if you cannot understand half of what the characters are talking about, the sheer intelligence of the script kind of washes over you and it's impossibly compulsive viewing. It's a bit of a wish fulfilment fantasy for people tired of typical real world politics, but who cares. This actually made me interested in politics, which is something I never thought would happen.



    2. Planet Earth


    I wish I could just list all of the Attenborough documentaries, as they are truly some of the finest television ever made, but if I had to pick one, I would go for this - a collection of episodes covering the whole planet and its ecosystem, with the first use of full HD cameras, which means it is often like seeing a window into literally another part of the world through your TV.



    3. The Animals of Farthing Wood


    The fact that this is not available on DVD still is criminal of the BBC. Watched religiously in my younger years, it had a huge impact on me. Following the fates of each character in their desperate struggle to survive against human cruelty was unforgettable.



    4. The World at War


    Speaking of human cruelty... This is probably one of those most comprehensive and horrific documentaries on the second world war ever made. It is told even handedly, with some absolutely startling archive footage, and covers literally every stage and location of the entire war giving a full picture of events. The fact that it was aired barely 25 or so years after the event is quite startling.



    5. M*A*S*H


    While some of it may have aged these days, as a response to the Vietnam war (while being set in the war in Korea) M*A*S*H despite being an often light hearted sitcom has some of the most powerful anti-war writing in any TV show I've watched. For the love of God turn off the laugh track, though. It was actually shown without it here in the UK because people realised how stupid having it was presumably, and it had actually been added on to the show in the US to its detriment. Some episodes shown there actually didn't have one on purpose in later series because of the subject matter.



    6. Star Trek (The original series)


    The mother of all modern science fiction series is still one of the best ever made. It dealt with hard sci-fi concepts right from the very first series and still shames modern science fiction shows with its writing, characters and willingness to tackle complex moral subjects. It was also shown at just the right time on BBC2 to catch it and I watched it religiously. TNG didn't quite live up to it when it was shown later.



    7. Carnivale


    Not many people have heard of Carnivale, and it was unfortunately cancelled before the story was finshed. But I urge you to seek it out and give it a watch. It's a truly imaginative, compulsive and beautiful slice of fantasy Americana.



    8. Babylon 5


    Shut up. Many people are divided on their opinions of Babylon 5, and basically when people say it's a bit shit they would be entirely justified. The sets are terrible, the acting diabolical for the first season and nearly all the the way through after that, the background soundtrack is bad, and the CG work incredibly dated. But when I tuned in every week when it was first airing here I couldn't get enough. Here was a show that actually seemed to be telling an ongoing story that gradually weaved in layers of intrigue into the plot as it went on, with actually believable character development and excellent sub plots throughout. I watched it again very recently and fully expected to have my rose tinted specs cruelly snatched away, but even now it shames modern shows with its consistency of vision. I was briefly excited that the new Battlestar Galactica was doing something similar when it came out, until it all went tits up. Just suspend your disbelief a bit...



    9. Due South


    Never saw this when it was on TV, but fell in love with it as soon as I was introduced - a simple story of a Mountie and his wolf trying to find his father's killer expands into an extremely watch-able show with some of the best writing and character moments I've seen, and a brilliant soundtrack. The writers were also later responsible for House I believe.



    10. Batman: The Animated Series


    Back when I was a kid, if there was one cartoon I could never miss it was this. Incredible visual style and remarkably grown up, it was like an animated version of the Tim Burton film and even had the same soundtrack. Episodes often had a glacial pace, but it felt unlike any other cartoon on TV at the time.



    11. Captain Scarlett


    My favourite of the Gerry Anderson stable and I always tuned in when it was on BBC2. An indestructible main character, menacing bad guys, and fun spy capers made for gripping stuff.



    12. X-Men: The Animated Series


    And this was the other unmissable cartoon series when I was a kid. Better than all the X-men films put together - I didn't even read the comics but back then I knew this was brilliant compared to nearly everything else on kid's TV, and it gets surprisingly dark.



    13. Paranoia Agent


    The late Satoshi Kon, of Perfect Blue fame, is responsible for this series, and he often pokes fun at Anime itself as a genre throughout. It's a psychological roller-coaster ride and is far more intelligent than nearly any other Anime series I have ever seen, and may actually be some of Satoshi Kon's best work.



    14. Futurama


    Call me weird, but I actually prefer Futurama to The Simpsons, or at least the first few series. Taking the great writing talent from The Simpsons and going to wonderful places, it's essential viewing for anyone.



    15. Jonathan Strange & Mister Norrell


    I often find adaptations of my favourite novels to be lacking in some way or done half-arsed or completely missing the spirit of the original story. But this adaptation was one of the most surprising and brilliant I have ever seen, and has some truly fantastic performances.



    16. Red Dwarf


    It gets a bit crap towards the end of its run, but the first few series combine genuinely great science fiction ideas, humour, and pathos in a way that I don't think was done as well in British TV and radio since The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy (which had a mediocre TV adaptation after the truly fantastic radio series). Shame the attempts at revival were not that successful.



    17. Breaking Bad


    Watched this only recently, and it's already become one of my favourite TV shows ever. The writing is truly excellent, and I've not watched a show that feels as complete and well thought out a story since Babylon 5. Yes I compared Breaking Bad to Babylon 5.



    18. Archer


    Truly one of the funniest TV shows I have ever seen. Not a lot more need be said.



    19. Gormenghast


    Another book adaptation, which deviates only slightly from the source material, but is an anarchic and often Terry Gilliamesque creation of weirdness. The book is a long and arduous read, but if you can't get through it this is perhaps the next best thing.



    20. Ghost in the Shell (series)


    I loved the original Ghost in the Shell film, and always have a soft spot for cyberpunk in general. The series may not be arguably as good as the film, but it has space and breathing room to tackle many concepts of transhumanism. It's sometimes convoluted and pompous, but always in interesting ways. It's not for everyone, but some episodes stand out as brilliant self contained science fiction stories




    Honourable mentions: The Borrowers, The Office, The Simpsons (obviously), Blackadder (especially the final episode), Auf Wiedersehen Pet, Black Books, Brass Eye, Cowboy Bebop, Warehouse 13, Buffy, Star Trek: TNG, Ghostwatch, All those Alan Garner novel adapted kid's series, Pirates of Darkwater, Mysterious Cities of Gold, Through the Trap Door, Spartacus: Blood and Sand, Thunderbirds, South Park, Monty Python's Flying Circus. Band of Brothers...


    EDIT: I still haven't seen The Wire yet, unfortunately.


    EDIT 2: Forgot Fraiser! It's like Advance Wars in my top 20 games list all over again. I would happily swap it for GITS, but I'll stand by my votes now.


  3. And Luke going from a resigned dignified drop to screaming like a bitch when he lets go of the gantry. Although that may have been removed in one of the subsequent re-releases. I lose track.

    Oh God, just when I forgot some of the bullshit that was added...

    Just give us the Theatrical Cut, warts and all, with nothing done to it other than a retouched and restored picture and sound based on the original prints.

    If you release it, they will come. Collectively.

  4. I'm back from hols now so I should be able to update this soon. In the meantime I'm glad to see the top 10 has generated some feverish discussion. Even the brief mental prolapse over The Last of Us.

    Also:

    Am I the only person who still plays Goldeneye with his mates? It's only a couple of times a year but every time we dig it out it's still amazing fun.

    I played Goldeneye relatively recently and blasted through on a lower difficulty - it was just as much fun as blasting through the original DOOM, feels similar played that way, and still rocks.

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