Thursday, 17 October 2013

If Sonic was a Pokémon, Would Doctor Eggman Be Team Rocket or an Egg Shaped Snorlax?

When considering Sonic, it becomes clear that rather than simply being an anthropomorphic hedgehog, the spiked speedster can in fact be seen to be a new type of Pokémon, heretofore undiscovered by man.

I am the very best like no one ever was.

While Sonic appears to be a mouse Pokémon, it is unclear exactly what type he belongs to, being distinct from the well-known types of Fire, Grass and Water. From our initial observations, he does seem to quite close to the Normal-type in abilities and powers, and could possibly be some sort of mutation of that type. That said, his spiked appearance is quite similar in appearance to that of Sandslash, a fellow mouse Pokémon but a Ground-type.

If Sonic is related to Sandslash, family reunions must get quite prickly.
(It is unclear at this stage whether Sonic has the ability to induce bad puns, although research suggests some correlation.)

Regardless of the exact type, this discovery explains the many variations of the Sonic creature seen over the years, which now can be seen to be its different evolutions rather than desperate attempts to seem hip and relevant as previously thought.


In this manner we can see that Sonic is a rare breed of Pokémon which often evolves in small, incremental steps rather than a full-blown stages like other Pokémon.

Sonic's first evolution, note the potbelly and lack of buckles.

Thus, the simple additional of buckles to his shoes and a change of eye colour from black to green seems to indicate the second stage of evolution for Sonic.

Buckles maketh the Pokémon.

Also, like Eevee, Sonic appears to be able to evolve into different types and does not have a set path of evolution. This accounts for the vast disparity in different variations of Sonic seen. From the ferocious Werehog,

The spikes on his back are replaced with spikes on his shoes. Spikes are an evolutionary constant.

To the invincible Super Sonic which gains the ability to fly and pulsate a yellow psychic energy shield to protect itself against attack.

Super Saiyan... um, Super Sonic.

But Sonic is not the only new Pokémon discovered in recent years. Sonic often is found in groups of three with a Tails and a Knuckles. Like Sonic, these types of these two Pokémon are hard to classify, although Tails seems to be Normal/Flying type whilst Knuckles seems to be a Normal/Ground hybrid.

Together, they offer a three-ponged attack of spikey speed, fluffy flight and horned strength. 

Here are all three in their pre-evolved states:

How did they all fit in one Pokéball? Seriously, so much adorableness could not be contained by anything less than a Masterball.

Hopefully, we will one day be able to fully understand and classify what type Sonic, Tails and Knuckles are but with this remarkable discovery, we have begun to unlock the magic and mystery of that most wondrous place: the incredible world of Pokémon.


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Friday, 4 October 2013

The Difference Between Magic and Science in Star Wars

The Stars Wars Saga simultaneously encompasses one of the greatest movie trilogies of all time and one of the most disappointing.

The original trilogy is popular culture touchstone beloved by millions and introduced so many good things into the world such as blasters, the Millennium Falcon, lightsabers, the Force, Han Solo, lightsabers, Darth Vader, Jedi, and lightsabers. Oh, and it also featured a memorable intro...

Rolling text roamed the universe in search of plot narration.

They are not without their flaws though, such as this Stormtrooper hitting his head on the door:

The finest trooper in the Empire.

The prequel trilogy, on the other hand, is comprised of some of the most reviled movies of all time. Films so disappointing and infuriating that they known to incite fanboys into murderous blood-thirsty rage at the mere mention of Jar Jar Binks.

Me'sa just wants'a hug. 
There are many things wrong with the prequels. Many many things. From thinking that what was really missing from the originals was boring political debates...

And yes, Jar Jar Binks is a member of the Galactic Senate, because fuck it.

And tedious meetings of the Jedi counsel...

Half of whom were died of boredom and came back as ghosts.

To just generally shitting all over the original films' continuity in ways that served no purpose other than to shoehorn some of the beloved (and most marketable) characters from the first trilogy into the prequels.

Darth Vader built C3PO as a child. This is cannon. 

Oh, and R2D2 was Anakin's astrotech robot in the Clone Wars, because of course he was.

"Come on, R2. Let's bounce."

Aside from raising a host of questions like 'how come Darth Vader didn't recognise that the pair of robots hanging around Luke, Leia and Han looked surprisingly similar to the pair of robots he used to hang with before he got hit with the asthma?', this just makes the Star Wars universe seem a lot smaller when all the important stuff in this huge rich universe of a million different alien species happens to a group of like 10 people and these two robots.

However, these (and many other) problems have been discussed and critiqued in great depth elsewhere on the interwebs. But few people have discussed magic. 

Not quite the magic I meant.

In the original films there is a real sense of magic and fun, in the prequels this is replaced by pseudo-science and utmost seriousness (politics and trade embargoes). Compare how Obi-Wan first tells Luke, and by extension, everyone, about the Force. The Force is described by Obi-Wan as what gives a Jedi his powers, an intangible energy force that flows through the universe and binds all living things. 

Alec Guinness (Ben Obi-Wan Kenobi) and Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) in Star Wars -  Episode IV (1977)
"It's invisible but you can feel it. In your heart."- Not actual quote.

In the prequels however, when Qui-Gon Jin tells Anakin about the Force and all of a sudden it is about the midichlorian count in your bloodstream. And what are midichlorians, you ask? 

"Midichlorians are a microscopic life form that resides within all living cells". 

Qui-Gon must be trolling him. He must be. Look at that smirk.

Okay... and how does this relate to the Force again? 

"Without the midichlorians, life could not exist, and we would have no knowledge of the Force. They continually speak to us, telling us the will of the Force. When you learn to quiet your mind, you'll hear them speaking to you."

"Yeah... sure thing, crazy bearded man."

This answers a question that nobody asked with an answer nobody wanted. And nobody asked the question because the fact the Force is a type of energy that moves through all living things is enough. That makes it something mystical and cool. Essentially the Force is magic and it didn't need to be explained because "look how awesome it is that he can use it to move things!" But in the prequels, George Lucas for whatever reason decided to replace the magic and wonder in the originals by pointlessly and terribly trying to explain everything with horrible pseudo-science.

When Obi Wan asks Han if the Millennium Falcon is a fast ship, Han replies, "It's the ship that made the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs." No one knows what the Kessel Run is or what a parsec is. All we get from this is that the Millennium Falcon is fast because it sounds badass that it made the Kessel Run in 12 parsecs and that's all we need to know.

When this man tells you something in a vague badass manner, you know it is true. Don't question it.

If this exchange had happened in the prequels, Han would have spouted off some babble how it actually isn't the fastest ship but rather has the best navigational system and therefore can plot the best and most efficient course in hyperspace. Because that explanation is totally hardcore and not at all lame.

But then again, lightsabers!