Nuggets of Wisdom

Monday, February 29, 2016

VGM Monday: Zant Boss Battle

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD Remake will be released later this week. So what better way to commemorate the occasion than by sharing some Twilight Princess music for this week's VGM Monday?

The game had some awesome boss battles, and some equally awesome music. So obviously this week’s feature would be some awesome boss battle music from my favorite boss battle—that being the final battle against the main antagonist, Zant.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Shameless Plug Saturday: ABrandonToThePast

Yesterday, Pokémon celebrated its 20th anniversary. What better way to celebrate than to feature a Pokémon channel for Shameless Plug Saturday? Most of you are probably already familiar with The JWitzz and The Dex, so how about a channel just as great if slightly more underrated like ABrandonToThePast?

Top 10 Dumbest Things Said By Melissa Harris-Perry

Melissa Harris-Perry--the woman who proved, along with Mehmet Oz and Andrew Wakefield, that you can have a PhD and still not know what the f*** you're talking about--recently quit the Marxists Spewing Nothing But Crap (MSNBC) "news" network. And nothing of value was lost. (Then again, MSDNC had not value to begin with, so that's essentially subtracting by zero!)

If there was anything of value that this talking bobble head provided, it was unintentional comedy--albeit the same type of comedy that you would find in an Adam Sandler movie, and not any of the good ones, either of them!

So to "celebrate" her departure, allow me to list the top ten dumbest things she has ever said. Why top ten? Because I like to go one step beyond those who dare to be stupid!

Best Argument Against Democracy

Etan Cohen, the screenwriter for Idiocracy, recently lamented on Twitter about how his film has become reality, writing, “I never expected Idiocracy to become a documentary.” At this point, it’s hard to argue that this isn’t the case.

We live in a country where a significant portion of the population believes that vaccines cause autism, genetically-modified food causes cancer, and fracking causes earthquakes—despite all scientific evidence to the contrary. Even more disturbing, a significant portion of Americans believe that the sun revolves around the earth and that mandatory labels should be required for "food containing DNA".

Is it really any wonder that so many Americans have become so braindead when our institutes of “higher learning” care more about shielding students from “microaggressions” and “biased language” through “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings” and teaching them to respect “personal pronouns”? No wonder our society has become an idiocracy!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Fan Art Friday: Love Wins: Undyne X Alphys

To wrap up this month of romance and gender equality, this last "Love Wins" Fan Art Friday is dedicated to a recent favorite couple of mine: Alphys and Undyne from Undertale.

Truth be told, I've yet to play the game, but considering how good people say it is, I so want to play it. If there's one thing that I know, it's that the geeky anime-loving scientist Alphys and the strong-yet-sexy captain of the royal guard Undyne make a cute couple. Hopefully, when I actually play the game, I can grow to better appreciate their "opposites attract" romance. Until then, how could I resist dedicating an entire post to them and their love?

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Top 10 Things Children Today Don't Recognize

Back in 2000, I was hearing my music skip on my Discman, rewinding video cassette tapes that I rented from the local video store, and listening to the dial-up tone as I waited for my computer to connect to the internet.

More than 15 years later, and I still find it hard to believe that I can listen to music, watch movies and videos, and surf the net at breakneck speeds—all on my cell phone!

I’m barely 30, and this WatchMojo video on the "Top 10 Things Children Today Don't Recognize" makes me feel twice as old!

Think Voting Doesn't Matter?

I (theoretically) believe democracy works, but only when we have an educated and informed populace. That’s something we don’t seem to have, considering that a shocking number of Americans believe that the sun revolves around the earth and that there should be mandatory labels on foods containing DNA. So is it any real surprise that Trump and Sanders are leading in the polls and caucuses? When smart people don’t vote, stupid people do, and they end up choosing our leaders. This is why H.L. Mencken once warned that, if democracy progresses as the current rate, “the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Which Do You Prefer: Cinnamon or Butterscotch?

For no reason in particular, which do you prefer: cinnamon, or butterscotch? Did you say butterscotch? Um, you do not dislike cinnamon, do you? Why not have both with a butterscotch cinnamon pie?

Yes, what you see is my first attempt at making Toriel's famous health-restoring pie from Undertale. It tastes deliciously spicy like a pumpkin pie. However, it seems as though my first pie was a bit too soft. Perhaps next time I will cook it for a bit longer. Either way, I’m sure goat mom would be proud.

If you want to try your hands at making the pie, you can check out the recipe here:

Monday, February 22, 2016

Silicon Valley Vs. Washington DC

I can already hear the statists cry, “b-b-but government invented the internet!” It didn’t, of course. But even if it did, the free market has allowed the internet to far better benefit the average American than the government ever did.

Government has used the internet to monitor the thoughts and actions of its citizens through mass surveillance. The market, meanwhile, has allowed the internet to provide the populace with goods and services which better improve their overall  lives.

Why else do you think the government is trying so desperately to regulate the internet with bogus measures like SOPA and PIPA? Not to mention that government regulation is preventing “big ebil corporations” from providing free internet to impoverished nations and disadvantaged people. Providing poor people with “free stuff”? That’s the government’s job! Feel Teh Bern!

VGM Monday: Xerneas & Yveltal Battle Theme

You enter a vast dark room. Your footsteps echo within the hollow darkness. Before you, standing in the center, looms a tall beast. Is it a giant deer, or rather a giant bird? You cannot tell in this darkness.

You can only watch as the beast struggles in place. It is restrained by several fiber optic tubes glowing with energy—energy that appears to be emanating from the beast itself. Clearly, its energy is being harvested for untold nefarious purposes.

Suddenly, from the beast resonates a spectrum of light and color. Whatever energy it is giving off now appears to be surging at a much greater rate. From its very essence comes a mighty blast that finally frees it from its bonds.

Evidently traumatized by its experience, the beast begins to rampage. You can only watch and stare as the beast goes mad. The ground rumbles as an earthquake. The air cracks like thunder.  You feel it upon yourself to subdue this mighty monster, lest the world around your crumbles apart from the chaos. You take a step forward and initiate the battle.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Disney Sunday: Top 10 Unsolved Gravity Falls Mysteries

Last week saw the conclusion of the greatest show on the Disney Channel, Gravity Falls--and what a conclusion it was! The last episode did a tidy job of wrapping up all of the show's mysteries, along with its many character and story arcs, leaving absolutely no loose ends behind.

Or did it?

Channel Frederator managed to find ten mysteries that have yet to be solved, and which very well never will be. Does that mean there's still hope for a new season or spin-off series, or will these "mysteries" simply be left to fan speculation? You be the judge as you watch the video below:

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Daily Stevie Pony: Poofle Universe

Now that I think about it, both Fluffy Puff and Lion have the same pink fluffy fur. And both have dimension-defying powers. Coincidence? (Also, of course Pearl breaks down and winds up loving the Fluff. Not even the cold-as-ice Chrysalis can defy her cuteness. She’s so cute and fluffy I wanna die!)

Shameless Plug Saturday: DactDigityl

Today's the birthday of one of my best pals on deviantART, Travis Retriever. As a birthday treat for him, I'm dedicating this week's Shameless Plug Saturday in his honor. I was originally going to feature his gallery, but since most of the art there are commissions (and also NSFW), I've decided to do the next best thing and feature a gallery that could very well spark his interest: DactDigityl.

Personally, I'm not into feet. I always considered them to be ordinary body parts. But apparently, a lot of people are into feet--and I mean "really" into them. Travis appears to be one of those people, and so is DactDigityl--so much so that his entire gallery is nothing but cartoon and furry characters and their feet.

Again, I'm not into those body parts, but I am into My Little Pony. And since DactDigityl has a few good MLP feet pics, I've decided to showcase them for this week's post. Hope you all enjoy it, especially you, Travis. Happy birthday, dude! ;)

Friday, February 19, 2016

Fan Art Friday: Love Wins: Cecil X Carlos

Mostly, for my “Love Wins”-themed Fan Art Fridays this month, I’ve been focusing solely on the “L-side” of the LGBT spectrum. For this week’s post, I’ll be focusing on the “G-side” of the spectrum by highlighting my favorite gay couple: Cecil and Carlos from Welcome To Night Vale.

As I’ve mentioned before, Welcome To Night Vale is what you would get if Gravity Falls were set in the Southwest and had its own radio show reporting on its many strange happenings. In fact, now that Gravity Falls has concluded, I’d highly recommend Night Vale to anyone seeking something to help them fill the void left by Gravity Falls.

There are many things to like about Night Vale. One of those things is the cute pairing of Night Vale radio host, Cecil Palmer, and his boyfriend (one season in), Carlos, Perfect Carlos, with the perfect hair and teeth as straight as a military cemetery. I don’t know what it is about this couple that enthralls me, but nonetheless, I consider it to be cute. So here are some equally cute fan art of them:

Salon Ain't No Reputable Source

Both Salon and Alternet need to win an award for creativity for being able to regurgitate the exact same talking points in their anti-libertarian screeds while making those articles appear fresh and unique each and every time. If anything, they should at least create a drinking game out of it all!

If you're ever unfortunate enough to read an anti-libertarian screed from Salon or Alternet, grab a bottle of Jack Daniel's (or your own personal choice of booze) and take a shot whenever the article…

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Votes, Smokes, And Booze

So requiring photo ID to vote would prevent poor people from voting? Poor people can buy cigarettes and booze and cash their welfare checks, and all of that requires identification. If they can do all of that, what's to stop them from voting--other than fearmongering from politicians who exploit them to vote against their own best interests? (Looking at you, Democrats!)

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Photo ID For Guns But Not Votes

Don’t consider this an endorsement of voter ID laws. I don’t real support or oppose them. I do find it interesting that many European countries require voter ID, and yet none of them receive the same level of controversy as voter ID laws have over here. Also, no one seems to bat an eye when photo ID is required for a myriad of other transactions, the least of which is buying cough medicine.

But perhaps the most transparent hypocrisy is how the same progressive liberals who argue that voter ID laws infringe on the right to vote don’t seem to feel the same way about proposed background checks for gun purchases, which, following their same logic, would infringe on the real Constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

Then again, Democrats have a more invested interest in having stupid poor people vote against their own best interests rather than ensuring that good guys have better access to guns than bad guys—which, more and more, seem to be the cops.

Monday, February 15, 2016

VGM Monday: Pokémon Rise and Fall

On Feb. 27, 1996, Pokémon Red and Blue challenged players everywhere to catch them all. Twenty years later, the Pokémon franchise is still going strong with its sixth generation, with a possible seventh generation on the horizon. One of my favorite aspects of the games have been their music, so what better selection for this week’s VGM Monday than Pokémon music?

This week, we’re highlighting music from Pokémon Rise and Fall. What’s that? You’ve never heard of those games? Probably for good reason. They’re not official games. They’ve not even been released. But judging by the sample, these fanmade games sound most epic. This is by far some of the best Pokémon battle music I’ve heard—and they’re not even for official Pokémon games, but rather unreleased fanmade games. That’s quite something to have fans outperform the actual franchise. Anyway, take a listen and judge for yourself:

SU Recap: It Could've Been Great

Life and death and love and birth, and peace and war on the planet Earth. Is there anything that's worth more than peace and love on the planet Earth?

This song is so simple, and yet it reveals so much about this episode. With Steven having been born on the planet, and the Crystal Gems having served thousands of years to defend it, they’ve grown to love the planet they call home—a love that Peridot has yet to fully understand. This is made all the more apparent once they discover Gem Homeworld’s initial plans for the planet. Peridot expresses nothing but glee over what the Earth could have been, but she remains oblivious as to why the other’s do not share her same excitement. Of course, not having lived there, she wouldn’t understand, and it’ll take her another episode for her to fully realize that.

Zika Virus Will (Not) Destroy Us All!

Have you heard of the Zika Virus? It's this scary new disease that's totes gonna turn into a pandemic and destroy us all! Destroy us all! Destroy us all! Destroy us all! I'll take the chicken.

Remember when the mainstream media warned us that Ebola would be the end of all of us? It didn’t. Neither did the Swine Flu. Or the Bird Flu. Or the West Nile Virus. Or any of the other “pandemic” bogeymen pushed by the lamestream media. I guarantee you that more Americans will die from the regular flu than they ever will from the Zika Virus. Do not let mass media hysteria make you live in fear. Just keep calm, wash your hands, and carry on.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Daily Pony: Love Letters

Uh oh! Looks like Flash Sentry received the wrong message for Hearts and Hooves Day--and it's the one for his commanding officer, no less! How will this embarrassing predicament play out? Find out by reading the rest of the comic here.

Disney Sunday: Every Disney Sexual Reference!

After my month-long Disney celebration last month, I’ve discovered that I really loved talking about Disney, and I didn’t want to wait an entire year to do so again. As such, today I’m kicking off Disney Sunday, my newest feature in which I discuss anything and everything Disney. Every week, I’ll share something Disney-related, whether it’s news or fan art or videos or whatever I feel like.

Today's also another special day: Valentine’s Day! Valentine’s is about love, and love eventually leads to sex; and despite appearing squeaky clean, Disney films have managed to sneak in a few sexual innuendos. Some of them are obvious. Some of them require the aid of a pause button and good enough pair of eyes to spot them.

Are these hidden innuendos intentional, or are they just the imagination of certain Disney Fans and their dirty minds? You be the judge with this Channel Frederator video highlighting the many Disney sexual references:

Daily Stevie: Stevonnie Wedding Fusion

For this Valentine’s Day, here’s a glimpse into the future of Steven and Connie’s first dance. Of course they’re going to get hitched. Steven said he wanted to be more than “First Boy” when Connie became President of the United States. And of course, a little mishap like this is going to happen. Because of course it will!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Daily Pony: Let Me Drive My Van Into Your Heart

Does this video count as a Daily Pony and Daily Stevie? Anyway, this Valentine's Day, let that special somepony drive their van into your heart.

Daily Stevie: Beach City High School Host Club

I've never watched Ouran High School Host Club. From what I hear, it’s a harem anime, only with several boys fighting for the attention of one girl, rather than several girls fighting for the attention of one boy. Well, if male otakus can enjoy their romantic fantasies, it’s only fair that the female variety enjoy their own. That’s how you really handle “objectification”—make it equal opportunity!

Choose Your Future

In the future of Nineteen Eighty-Four, society is dominated by an authoritarian state that oppresses the population into submission by controlling their actions and thoughts through brute force, mass surveillance, and crude propaganda. This is the future as created by Republicans.

In the future of Brave New World, society is controlled by a “benevolent dictatorship” that pacifies the population into submission by granting their every need and ensuring their utmost happiness through trivial distractions such as drugs, sex, and entertainment. This is the future as created by Democrats.

In the future of Tomorrowland, society allows its best and brightest minds to exercise their creativity and ingenuity without boundaries or restrictions, allowing them to create technological and cultural innovations that benefit the population at large. This is the future as created by Libertarians.

Which future would you prefer to live in? The future is what you make of it. So choose your future, and choose wisely. (But in all seriousness, go with the libertarian future. It has jetpacks and flying trains!)

Friday, February 12, 2016

Fan Art Friday: Love Wins: Korra x Asami

Is it any real surprise that I would include Korrasami in this series of LGBT-friendly Valentines Day-themed Fan Art Fridays? I guess it is, because too many fans still can't believe that Korra and Asami are an item--as though the very last scene from the very last episode wasn't evidence enough. Even the creators came out and admitted that, yes, the two are indeed a bisexual couple. What more proof do you want?

Oh well! For us Korra fans whose gaydar isn't on the fritz, most of us can appreciate this bold move in children's media. More than a decade ago, when Avatar was first released, even the slightest implication that any television character, in a children's show no less, was less than straight would have been considered scandalous. Now, one decade later, not only do we have an openly bisexual couple, but gay marriage has finally been legalized. We still have a long way to go, but Korrasami reveals the progress we as a society have already made thus far.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Do You Love Me?

Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, I've decided to share something Valentine-related. My original intent was to share the Tiny Toons episode “Love Among The Toons”.

The episode has Cupid (played by Elmer Fudd) confer his bow and arrow to dimwitted Concord Condor, who in turn goes around hooking up polar opposites as couples—the least of which is Babs Bunny and antagonist Montana Max, much to the displeasure of Buster Bunny.

Sadly, I could not find the full episode on YouTube or any video streaming website. So my Plan B is to share this music video of “Do You Love Me”:

The Most Epic Response To Internet BS Ever!

I wish this go-to-hellegram really existed. I’d love to use it against conspiracy theorists, anti-vaxxers, anti-GMO activists, feminist SJWs, and most economically-illiterate statists—in other words, roughly 90 percent of social media!

Teach Bears Not To Attack

College Humor(less) previously released a video called “What If Bears Killed One In Five People?” in which a bunch of dudebros watching football get attacked by a bear that they chose to ignore. The implication, of course, is to contrast this behavior with that towards the “1 in 5 women get raped” statistic, insisting that we should take rape as seriously as we would bear attacks if the rates for them were as high.

Of course, the “1 in 5 women” feminist talking point has been proven bunk, and the real statistics are astronomically higher. 1 in 5 women? More like 1 in 52! And that’s also ignoring the fact that sexual assault rates, especially among college-age women, have been on the sharp decline for decades.

But let’s pretend that 1 in 5 women really are raped. If bear attacks were equally as common, then clearly, according to feminist logic (or lack thereof), the solution would be, not to teach people how to defend themselves from bear attacks, but to teach bears not to attack! Sounds ridiculous? So is “teach men not to rape”!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Michigan Has Its Priorities Straight!

I’m sure you’ve heard of what’s going on in Michigan. The state has been in the news lately, mostly because of two cities run (into the ground) by Democrats. One city is Detroit, which has become bankrupt after 50 years of Democrat rule. The other is Flint, whose drinking water has become contaminated due to government neglect. Saying the state is facing a crisis would be an understatement.

Well, the state’s government has recently become aware of how messed up everything is, and after such a long period of government inaction, has decided to take action—against sodomy!

Why African Americans Vote Democrat

Lately, the following Lyndon B. Johnson quote has been spreading across social media faster than the Zika virus: "If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you."

The implication, of course, is that this is the alleged political strategy used by Republicans to garner the “racist” white vote. The irony, however, is that LBJ, who was an actual racist who opposed the Civil Rights Act, was also infamous for saying this: “These Negroes, they're getting pretty uppity these days and that's a problem for us since they've got something now they never had before, the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we've got to do something about this, we've got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference... I'll have them niggers voting Democratic for the next two hundred years.”

Ever since LBJ, Democrats have used his very strategy to garner the African American vote, promising them government programs and policies that would allegedly help them. More than half a century later, those very same Democratic policies have done more harm than good for the African American community—and yet they remain loyal to the political party that have done them that very harm.

Black conservative columnist Thomas Sowell had previously elucidated how Democratic policies, which were paved with good intentions, managed to pave the road to hell for African Americans: rent control has kept blacks homeless, minimum wage has left them unemployed, affirmative action has turned many into college dropouts, and gun control has turned many into victims of gun violence. As Sowell laments, "Many liberal ideas about race sound plausible, and it is understandable that these ideas might have been attractive 50 years ago. What is not understandable is how so many liberals can blindly ignore 50 years of evidence to the contrary since then."

Actually, it’s very understandable: Democrats have long since convinced African Americans to vote against their own best interests by supporting Democratic politicians that pretend to support their best interests; and when their policies fail to live up to their promises, those same politicians point their fingers at the Republicans and blame them for their mess. Democrats are literally rich white people telling poor black people that other white people are to blame for their misery. This tactic has worked since LBJ, and it very well could work for another two hundred years.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

I Vote Democrat (Not!)

Do I even need to explain what’s wrong with Bernie’s economic “plan”? It’s already been proven bogus time and again. The shortest answer would be the famous Thatcher quote that “socialism sounds good until you start running out of other people’s money.” Then again, the appeal of “free stuff” and sticking it to “teh wich” seems to be stronger than empirical reality for most people, even when it’s to the detriment of everyone else. Once again, it would be nice if Democratic policies only affected other Democrats!

Monday, February 8, 2016

VGM Monday: Spider Dance & Bonetrousle

I’ve yet to play Undertale, but having heard great things about it, I really want to. The game sounds extremely creative, especially since it’s a role-playing game that lets you go through the entire game without fighting. On top of that, the game appears to be a pure nostalgic throwback with retro 8-bit art style and music.

As I said before, I’ve yet to play the game, so I’ve yet to hear the entire soundtrack. But the few songs that I’ve heard thus far are really appealing. For this post. I’ll be sharing my two personal favorites thus far: Spider Dance and Bonetrousle.

SU Recap: Steven's Birthday

So, Steven’s 14 years old. Yeah, that surprised me as well. I’d always assumed he was 12 or younger. At least this episode acknowledges how weird it is that he’s older than he actually appears, and offers somewhat of an explanation as to why this is. As such, this episode not only delves further into Steven’s physiology as a half-human, half-gem hybrid, but on the affect this has on his psyche.

For Steven, being half-gem means being half-human, and being half-human means that he doesn’t quite fit in with the other human characters. This obviously makes him feel lonely, even when he knows that he has human family and friends who love him—especially now that it’s been revealed that he ages differently than everyone else, leaving the potential possibility that Steven may end up outliving his other human loved ones.

As with the episode “Full Disclosure”, Steven is afraid about what his life as a gem will affect his relationship with others, especially Connie. In that episode, he was afraid of her getting hurt because of his involvement with the Gems and their escapades; and in this episode, he’s afraid of possibly outliving her. But, as most scenarios of this nature obviously play out, Connie comes to accept Steven for who he is, and is more than willing to stick by his side no matter what. It’s an overplayed scenario, but one that is no less sentimental, which is all the more reason to like this series.

Stupid People Support Bernie

No further explanation required. This meme speaks for itself. And if you still don't get it, you might be a Bernie Sanders supporter. "Derp Herp! Feel Teh Bern!"

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Daily Stevie: Gangsta Universe

(TW: Foul language and a copious amount of political incorrectness)

I don’t know, there’s just some sort of guilt pleasure with watching Steven and Pearl speak in ghetto slang and ebonics. For shizzle, my crystal!

Daily Pony: The Muscle! The Hustle!

Wanted to share something football related with the Super Bowl being today. Anyone else watching the big game? Who’re you cheering for? The Panthers? The Broncos? Me? I’m not rooting for either of them. I’m only watching the game for the commercials! That and the half-time show are the only real reasons to watch it.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Dear John Fugelsang

No, John Fugelsang, Jesus did not require the multitude to receive a drug test to make sure they “deserved” the magically carbon copied fish and bread. However, when the exact same 5,000 people came back the next day begging Jesus for more food, The Big J.C. did tell them that, unless they were going to give up their lives and follow him unto death, that they should “GTFO!” because he wasn’t interested in giving handouts to freeloaders. Yeah, read the whole story. That’s exactly what happened! Funny how most libtarded “Christians” forget that part--probably because they never read it!

It’s "Christians" like Fugelsang who make me want to become an atheist. That way, when some self-righteous “Christian” like him demands that I become a full-fledged socialist because Jesus was one (even though he wasn’t), I could simply reply to them, “So? What do I care that some Bronze Age carpenter said in a book of fairy tales? I’m only interested in what real people said and did!” It's times like this that I envy my libertarian atheist brethren.

Shameless Plug Saturday: Mike The Cat

You know, most of my Shameless Plug Saturday posts seem to be on YouTube channels. So to change things up a little, here’s a post on a deviantART profile. And what better gallery to showcase than that of a best long lost friend who recently returned: Mike the Cat.

SU Recap: Too Far

Within her character redemption story arc, we see Peridot forming a stronger relationship with the different gems as she gets to know the more personally. We saw this with Pearl in the last episode, and we’ll see it with Garnet in an upcoming episode. And in this episode, we have her developing her relationship with Amethyst.

Getting to see Peridot form a sense of humor, as well as learn to form boundaries for her humor, does provide for a lot of humorous moments themselves, even if most of them are at her own expense. And that seems to be a major nitpick I have with this episode. I understand the message it’s trying to send, that you shouldn’t make fun of other people and hurt their feelings, but that message seems to be weakened when you take into account that Peridot herself was the butt of most of the jokes in this episode. Apparently, it’s okay for Amethyst to make fun of Peridot’s speech and mannerisms, but it’s going “too far” when Amethyst becomes the receiving end of a joke? Whatever “lesson” the episode was trying to teach seems to only come across as the pot calling the kettle black.

Otherwise, the episode had its good moments. When the gags are good, they are good, as are the action-filled and charming moments. It’s this blend of humor, action, and drama which fans have come to love, and while the message may have been off, everything else manages to make up for it.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Fan Art Friday: Love Wins: Ruby x Sapphire

Since this month is Valentine's Day, I've decided to dedicate this month's Fan Art Fridays to my favorite couples. And since the past year has seen gay marriage legalized throughout America, what better way to celebrate such a victory for gender and marriage equality than to dedicate these posts specifically to my favorite LGBT couples. (By which, I mean actual canonical couples and not fan shippings.) Because everyone deserves the right to love and marry their true love, regardless of their gender or sex!

What better way to start off this series dedicated to love all across the spectrum than with the very two spectral halves of the one character who's literally made of lo-o-o-ove? Of course, I'm talking about Ruby and Sapphire from Steven Universe. Even though we only get to see them a few times in the series, we see the result of their romance in the form of Garnet, who is literally the physical embodiment of a healthy, romantic relationship.

(And before I hear any complaints, yes, these two are technically gay. Yes, they're not human, but they're also both of the female gender and in a romantic relationship. That technically makes them "lesbians." Please stop denying this, because there's only one denial, and it's a river in Africa.)

SU Recap: Back To The Barn

In the last episode, we saw Peridot warm up to the Crystal Gems as a whole. In the next few episodes, we’ll see her warm up to each of them individually on a one-to-one basis, with Garnet (“Log Date 7 15 2”), Amethyst (“Too Far”), and, with this episode, Pearl.

Ever since being stranded on Earth, Peridot has been experiencing quite the case of culture shock, especially in this episode. She’s so accustom to living within a socially regimented society where every gem knows their place  that the very notion that a “common pearl” is not only capable of giving orders, but also capable of developing better technology than her, is extremely foreign. But as Garnet implies with her “welcome to Earth” quip, things are simply different on this planet, and she’s going to have to learn to unlearn her prejudices if she’s going to adjust. You could almost say that she needs to “check her privilege”! (Sweet Celestia, I can’t believe that I’m using that phrase unironically!)

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Throwback Thursday: How Freakazoid Predicted Internet Culture

When most people think of Warner Bros. animated television series from the 90s, they usually recall Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain, or Tiny Toon Adventures. However, there’s one animated series from that era which, while not completely unknown, is extremely underrated (at least by its own company), and which managed to leave such an impact on young viewers that it had since gained a cult following. I’m talking, of course, about Freakazoid.

If you’re one of the few people who’ve never watched that show (and I feel sorry for you if you never have), Freakazoid was about the comedic supehero alter ego of Dexter Douglas, nerd computer ace, who, as the theme song explains, “went surfing on the internet and was zapped to cyberspace, he turned into the Freakazoid: he's strong and super-quick, he drives the villains crazy 'cause he's a lunatic!”

SU Recap: When It Rains

What I love most about Steven Universe over My Little Pony is how natural the character development plays out. Unlike MLP:FiM, where characters turn on a dime (Discord, Trixie, Sunset Shimmer), here, Peridot’s redemption play out much more gradually as it should. In this episode, she starts out not trusting anyone, but then warms up to Steven, and eventually the other Gems. Throughout this story arc, we see her further develop her relationship with the others until we finally see her turn from Homeworld to their side. Obviously, it’s neat to see Peridot join the Crystal Gems, but it’s even better knowing that this progression moves as natural as it can be over the span of the remaining episodes. I only wish that this level of detail was applied equally to MLP sometimes.

Sanders Vs. Cruz

Props to Occupy Democrats Logic for coming up with the original meme. Not a Ted Cruz supporter by any means, but I will give him props when he does what Bernie doesn't. Unlike Sanders, who supports corporate ethanol subsidies, Cruz opposed such corporate cronyism while vouching for lower taxes for all Americans. And he managed to win Iowa doing all of that. That is awkward, indeed.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

SU Recap: Catch And Release

The prospect of Peridot potentially joining Steven and the Crystal Gems seemed quite intriguing when this episode first premiered. Of the three Homeworld Gems, she was the most likely one to switch sides (aside from Lapis, of course). Throughout the series, she never seemed to have evil intentions. If anything, she came across as a bored worker who was simply doing her job—a job that was inconveniently being interrupted by the Gems. With a little time, she could easily come around; and now, seven episodes later, she finally accepted the path of Avatar’s Zuko and MLP’s Discord and became a bad-character-turned good.

While this episode did introduce Peridot’s character redemption arc, the episode itself isn’t really that special. There’s not much for me to comment on in this episode, aside from pointing out a few good lines. Most of the humor was quite lackluster, and there were plenty of moments that felt like filler. Overall, not the best episode in Peridot’s arc, or even this season, but it's the most likely place for it to start.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

But Without The State, Who’d Kick Out Granny?

If you’re a libertarian who debates politics on-line, chances are you’ve been asked the question, “without government, who’d build the roads?” It’s such an insipid question that speaks more about the failings of statism than of libertarianism.

As Tom Woods once said, “the question belongs at the top of every libertarian drinking game. If we didn’t have forced labor, the argument runs, there would be no roads. There’d be a Sears store over there, and your house over here, and everyone involved would just be standing there scratching their heads.”

Statists can’t seem to figure out how roads can be built without the state (even though roads have been built long before the state ever existed), so they assume that libertarians must be equally as ignorant and unable to figure that out (even though we have). As such, statists assume that only the state is capable of building roads.

So it should be of no surprise to anyone that Republican frontrunner and loudmouth, Donald Trump, who claims to pay lip service to libertarianism, cites roads as a reason to support one of the most abused powers of the state, eminent domain:
Ted Cruz complains about my views on eminent domain, but without it we wouldn't have roads, highways, airports, schools or even pipelines.
We also wouldn’t have any of your casinos, Trump.

Monday, February 1, 2016

VGM Monday: Strike the Earth! Plains of Passage

If you still haven’t played Shovel Knight yet, you should. It is amazing! Think of it almost like a medieval Mega Man. The main difference is that you’re not fighting with a blaster. You’re not even fighting with a sword. You’re fighting with a shovel. A freaking shovel! And somehow the game manages to make that feel epic!

Another main difference between this game and Mega Man is that, unlike Mega Man, this game manages to be both challenging AND forgiving. The levels still pose a challenge, to be sure, but unlike Mega Man, they’re not impossible to beat, as your lives aren't really that limited. You can keep playing a level over and over again until you finally beat it, and all without getting a single game over. Again, the game is still challenging, but at least it gives you leeway to overcome it.

As this game is obviously an 8-bit throwback to retro gaming, everything from the sprites to the music all look and feel like a game ported from the original NES. And just like an old school game, it has some kickbutt retro-style music. This can be heard perfectly with the stage music for the very first level, The Plains. Just take a listen and tell me it doesn’t sound like it was ripped straight from Mega Man: