Don't Feed the Monster

Analyzing the Bad Eating Habits of Popular Monsters

If movies have taught us anything, it’s not love or music or beauty that soothes the savage beast, but junk food, and mostly sweet, sweet candy. It seems like just about any monster can be tamed with as little as a bar of chocolate. But what is it about candy? Do monsters have low blood sugar? Which could make sense with Frankenstein type monsters or zombies who no longer produce blood (however, they seem to have heartier tastes). Or is it something about the artificial nature of cinematic terror combined with artificial fruit flavors and preservatives?

I've talked before about the heroes who love to eat, but monsters just seem to have junk food on their minds. Just look at how many different monsters, aliens, and supernatural beings have sweet teeth across so many different horror and science fiction genres. Everything from ghosts to circus freaks, but I think there are really two basic types of junk food devouring monsters: those who protect children and those who are childish themselves. Or brawlers and bawlers.

The cynic in me says that the average Hollywood producer sees children as little walking billboards for the 11 and under demographic. If Elliott likes Reese’s Pieces, and Reese’s Pieces got him a special friend with a glowing finger, then perhaps Reese’s Pieces can get me a special friend with a glowing finger (although, I don’t want to know what that special friend would do with that special finger in real life). The optimist in me, however, chalks it up to storytelling. In a movie with a kid and a monster, and the kid has to either defeat or befriend said monster with whatever is handy, then the logical choice is something a child would have access to. And since kids are, in fact, little walking billboards the only thing handy is whatever product is willing to pay the most. However, the researcher in me wants to think that there’s a larger, more unified answer out there in a world of mystery and jujubes. I want to believe.

E.T.


Type: Bawler Junk Food: Reese’s Pieces

E.T. is like lost child, and the best way to lead any child to Lost & Found is, of course, a trail of candy. That’s pretty much the reason I leave trails of candy everywhere I go because I want to help children… and aliens. And ants. It is, also, a good thing though that aliens don’t have peanut allergies. About 1% of the US population has a peanut allergy, yet most aliens are completely immune to a nut outside their native ecosystems.

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Check out the New Gnards!

Here it is the new look of Wolf Gnards. Drink it in, embrace it, really take a hold of it, give it a squeeze, then turn your head and cough.

As you can see, we’ve increased wolves, while decreasing gnards. I know a lot of you think the gnards are the best part of the wolf, but more pants on werewolves may not be a bad thing. With pants they’ll let me buy Slurpees at 7-11 again. Maturity = more Slurpees = more sugar = sugar high = more immature behavior.

The slightly more professional exterior though is really just the thin candy coating. My insides are as damaged as always. I promise you that I will keep making the same low quality, poorly written articles, I will keep making the same bad jokes (only funny to myself), and I will keep posting poorly photoshopped images.

Slime & Suits: When Murray Stopped Being a Ghostbuster

Bill Murray

The news is Bill Murray is definitely out of Ghostbusters 3, but as painful as it is, did anyone not see this coming? I think it’s safe to say that I have a pro-Murray stance. In fact, I’ve made my career thus far off of worshiping Murray and all that he is and ever will be. So, I’m not really one to point out any Murray related wrong doings (Garfield?), but it seems to me the essential problem with Ghostbusters is Bill Murray has become a man who does not get slimed.

What do you need to be a Ghostbuster? A beige jumpsuit, elbow pads, kneepads, a black backpack with blinking lights, goggles (optional), slime (optional). Just the outfit really. It’s not that difficult, yet Ghostbusters II features Bill Murray in a wide array of business suits and sweater vests. And when he does wear the Ghostbusters costume, he wears the slightly more fashionable, slightly less ridiculous, much less iconic blackish gray Ghostbusters costume.

I don’t know the exact history of the Ghostbusters team at the time, but, of course, there are always the rumblings of the Ramis/Murray feud. Whatever the actual issue is I think Ghostbusters II really says a lot about their relationships. Murray’s Peter Venkman won’t stay with the other Ghostbusters at the firehouse (he has his own apartment in this movie), he won’t dress up with the Ghostbusters, he won’t go on wacky hijinks with the Ghostbusters, and he won’t get slimed. It’s difficult to have a Ghostbusters film with one of the Ghostbusters not really into busting ghosts. One of the most memorable scenes of the first film is when Murray got slimed. In the second film, it becomes increasingly clear that he was not getting slimed, he was not getting dirty, and he was not wearing silly outfits. What would he do? He’d wear sweaters, he’d sit around, he'd play with a baby, and he’d go out to dinner.

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Sentinels Doing Things

It’s funny that Marvel has taken an anti-mutant stance after years of X-men comics about equal rights. Of course, it’s not a political statement but more about saving a few bucks. It’s about some odd regulation that makes it cheaper to ship non-human action figures than it is to ship human action figures, and by arguing that Professor X, Magneto, Wolverine, and etc. are not human, Marvel saves some dough. And according to all the Ghost Rider hub bub, they need it! However, all these government regulations defining what is and what is not human got me thinking about the Sentinels.

The Sentinels are giant government sponsored robots designed for hunting down and incapacitating mutants. This is all well and good until a minor logic flaw makes the Sentinel robots realize that they hunt mutants, mutant are human, and therefor they hunt humans. Which I have no problem with because that is always what is bound to happen when you construct giant robots. Prime directives are just meant to be broken. When you construct colossal machines of doom expect that at some point they will turn against their evil creators, it’s a given. It happens time and time again, at some point your shiny new cybernetic law enforcement agent will throw employees (or recently fired employees) from windows. My problem is that our government is involved with this, meaning someone had to pass regulations to create giant robots. Not that the government isn’t stupid enough to make giant robots—I’m sure they have some giant robot factories someplace right now as I speak—but that they would pass legislation without tacking on any riders to the giant robot bill. Like why not have the Sentinels do something else when not waging a race war. Why limit it to mutant genocide?

Why spend billions of dollars on mechanical bounty hunters with no other practical functions? Giant robots have literally hundreds of uses if not dozens. I can’t imagine a single aspect of our everyday lives that wouldn’t benefit from three story tall robotic overseers. For instance, they could rescue small children trapped in wells. Just reach in a giant arm and pluck those suckers right out. Of course, the eventual programing glitch might go something like this: Sentinels rescue children, children are soft and squishy, if children were less soft and less squishy they wouldn’t need rescuing, Sentinels are hard and metal, replace children with Sentinels.

Still Sentinels just seem totally underutilized to me. They only things they seem to do consistently are rip the roofs off of houses to play peak-a-boo and have their heads torn off, surprisingly easily on both accounts. Here are some other everyday uses for Sentinels:

Construction

sentinel building


Sentinel robots could slap together new building like Legos. Think of all the hard working blue-collar folks they could put out work. A good, well-paying job isn’t the American dream; it’s getting a robot to do it for you.

Glitch: Sentinels build shelters for man, shelters keep man warm, Sentinels warm man with laser cannons in palm

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Groundhog Day: The Walking Tour

Bill Murray

Another Groundhog Day has come and gone and come and gone and come and gone, but this year I decided to do something to break the monotony. The time has come for me to make my pilgrimage to Groundhog mecca… no, not Punxsutawney, PA. It turns out the movie Groundhog Day (which I have written so much about) was filmed just an hour and half away from me in Woodstock, IL. Not only that, but Woodstock, IL, has become practically a Groundhog Day amusement park. Not an amusement park for the holiday of Groundhog Day, the way the real Punxsutawney is, but to celebrate the movie! It’s like a shrine to places Bill Murray has stood. There’s even an actual plaque that says Bill Murray stood here.

So, for the 20th anniversary of the Groundhog Day movie I decided to hop a train and make my way to festivities.

BING!

Woodstock's Groundhog Days featured a week of events that included several screenings, a dance (hopefully with bachelor auction), a symposium, and a walking tour of filming sites… BING! You get to see the Pennsylvanian Hotel, Gobbler’s Knob, the Puddle!, Tip Top Café (which doesn’t exist in any capacity, so really isn’t worth taking a picture of or seeing), the Alpine Theater, the bowling alley, and the Cherry Street Inn. All of which was mostly within 50 ft. of each other. So, if you like walking tours but hate walking then this is the tour for you. BING!

Woodstock has become what it was fictionally portrayed as being. It's now crammed with various Groundhog merchandise: shirts, mugs, buttons, stuffed animals, and cookies. And just about every restaurant has a framed photo of Murray.

buttons
Buttons!
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Happy Groundhog Day!

I was going to do a follow up about our classic Groundhog Day piece, but I figured I still have six weeks, so what’s the rush?

In the mean time, enjoy these other Groundhog Day stories:

Visit the film locations in Woodstock, IL! Maybe, it's time for a pilgrimage.

Groundhog Day: Where are they now? It turns out Bill Murray had a pretty good little career after the movie.

12 things you probably didn’t know about the movie “Groundhog Day” unless you’re a dork like me.

Why did Bill Murray keep going back in Groundhog Day?
Instead of rehashing my how long article, they actually asked something important... why?

Groundhog Day’s lost radio tape, not really, but it does have me acting poorly in it. And by “acting poorly” I mean just being actually awkward and stupid.