Opinionhated is a short story written in 2009 featuring an epic battle of fanboyism between two movie fans waged across the untamed hellscape of the internet. The overall story is available on Amazon Kindle for the princely sum of $1. Here are the introductory paragraphs:
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Sid was sitting on the couch in his modest apartment. Actually, it wasn’t modest, it was average. In fact, without his girlfriend living with him, it would’ve been downright bland. Men are such bland creatures. Thankfully, men have women. Because his girlfriend lives with him, the house was fancifully decorated and each little room had its very own theme. The kitchen’s theme revolved around apples for some reason. The bathroom was designed around blue and pink seashells and resembled a pastel nightmare. The office made up what would have been the second bedroom in their average two-bedroom apartment. It carried the theme of an office, and was either very messy or very neat. Usually though, it was very messy with stacks of random papers, post-it notes, notebooks, and documents of all sorts. It looks like a businessman had exploded in the room leaving stacks of totally random documents scattered about. Sid was not a businessman, but somehow, offices just seem to attract useless paper documents like celestial bodies to a black hole. Finally, the bedroom, the one actually used as a bedroom, was painstakingly designed around some sort of 19th Century whorehouse. Freya, Sid’s girlfriend, always claimed it was something called “Victorian,” but when Sid first saw it, he thought it looked like a whorehouse.
Of course, Sid was a man, and men always have to have a room to decorate themselves. It’s what makes a man feel important in his home after he hands most control over to a woman. And Sid was no slouch! His room was the best room! Sid had control over the living room. The most important room in any home is always the one that where all the living is to be done. Some men have garages, dens or tool sheds. Sid owns a living room.
The living room contained a solid glass-and-metal entertainment center on top of which sat an enormous television. It was a beautiful high-definition plasma television. It was over fifty inches wide. Beneath the television rested a DVD/VCR combo player on one of the glass shelves. Beneath that, the cable box. On the very bottom, the third shelf, sat the stereo system that Sid had spent considerable time searching for. It had the latest, 7.1 digital surround sound and it contained the ability to cause deafness in laboratory animals, old people, and anyone dumb enough to use it to its full potential. Sid didn’t yet own one of those fancy high-definition Blu-Ray players—they were still a bit too expensive for his taste and he felt that they didn’t offer all that much more viewing quality over regular DVD’s for the price. At least as far as Sid was concerned. But then, Blu-Ray is the home of smash Hollywood hits and major films like that. The movies Sid watches, however, are generally released on regular old DVD and those films were rarely, if ever, upgraded to take advantage of the digital medium’s various pluses. If the movies aren’t even good enough to be remastered for a digital format, there’s certainly going to be no attempt to make them take advantage of high-definition.
On either side of the entertainment center resided large, towering shelves filled nearly to capacity with old videos and DVD’s and box sets of DVD’s of all kinds. This was the biggest part of Sid’s life. He’s a movie fan. But not just for any movies, of course! Certainly not, if the movies he loves the most don’t even bother with high-def formats! Sid loves all sorts of horror and science fiction films. His massive collection of movies numbers well past six hundred with the vast majority of the films now being DVD format. When he tells people about this massive collection, he always estimates that “eighty-five per cent” of the movies are horror or sci-fi flicks.” This collection was a beaming point of pride for Sid. Of course, of that “eighty-five per cent,” one could easily estimate that eighty-five per cent of those are of a bottom-of-the-barrel variety of underground, old, or otherwise forgotten horror shlock from some dismal bygone era like the seventies or eighties or something. Films so unimportant, unrefined, unstylish, unadvanced or otherwise lacking in quality that no fool would dare spend the money to transfer them to some fancy high-definition format. After all, it would require an even bigger fool to want to purchase a god-awful forgotten horror film from the seventies, unchanged from its original release, transferred onto an expensive high-definition medium for twice as much as the cost of a DVD. And that’s just not a wise business practice.
Ironically, though, Sid had little problem with a massive fifty-plus inch high-definition television on which to watch all this shlock on “anamorphically enhanced standard DVD’s.”
Across from the entertainment center rested an elaborate sofa with movie-theater style seating, built-in cup-holders, and storage compartments. The sofa was cloth and not leather, which Sid was quite adamant about. Leather, he feels, is” just damn uncomfortable to sit on.” The living room ended with a huge glass window and door which led to the balcony and which would normally allow in a plethora of light from the outside world to flood joyously into the room to lighten it. Thankfully, Sid had taken away that joy with the thick curtains he’d found and hung in place of the normal blinds the apartment had originally come with. Because the flimsy little plastic strips once hung there failed to block out the sun completely, and it’s very important to prevent the sun’s penetration here. That happy glowing sunbeam would make the most unnerving glare on the television if it hadn’t been stopped. The walls behind the couch and around the room contained various framed, well cared for, movie posters. The one directly behind the couch was faded and a little tattered by time. Sid was very proud of this poster as he had spent some considerable money to get it. It was an original poster for the original 1954 Godzilla movie. This isn’t some cheap reprint either, it’s a real movie poster from the very first Godzilla film, printed and used during its initial American release way back in the fifties (by then, though, the film had gone from a 1954 Japanese masterpiece to a 1956 American nuclear monster movie). Sid also loved eBay.
This room is easily Sid’s pride and joy.
Today is Tuesday and Sid is at home, dressed in his usual attire of a black T-shirt with a gruesome image from some underground Metal band and boxers with the Xbox logo on them. Sid works at a local video rental store known as “Vidmax.” It’s almost pure luck the place still exists in this day and age, what with all the competing video rental places controlled by heartless national chains. Sid works as an assistant manager at Vidmax, and every chance he could, he talked about how much better it was than the major chain video stores because Vidmax still carried classic videos and underground films. You could find “classic” films like The Toxic Avenger, The Day the Earth Stood Still (the original one), This Island Earth, Leviathan, Terror Firmer, Blood Sucking Freaks, and all sorts of underground crap loved, unfortunately, by so few people. Sid loves crappy movies. He loves good movies. He loves Hollywood, too, sometimes. Sid really is a huge movie fan. His normal days for work are Wednesdays through Sundays. Mondays and Tuesdays are his weekends.
This addiction to cinema flooded over to Sid’s online life where he could be seen fairly often waxing poetically about wildly un-poetic films. His typical username was “TurboSidzilla” or some variation of that name. Sometimes it was just “TurboSid,” sometimes just “Sidzilla.” He had to mix it up a bit. Variety, as we all know, is the spice of life. He also has his own website where he mostly talks movies and posts his own reviews of films online. But that’s not all! There’s a website dedicated to everything movies. It’s the Internet Movie Database. Sid lived by this site and all of his reviews—because no hardcore movie fan lives without writing up reviews these days—eventually ended up on here, usually censored in some manner to what he wrote on his personal website. He had a small following on the site of about four people who routinely read, loved, and lived by his reviews. Sid considered himself a minor celebrity with this e-entourage.
Today, Sid sits bored on his couch. Currently, he’s watching a show on the History Channel about James Cameron’s film Titanic. Apparently, this film is important enough to warrant having a show on the History Channel rather than, say, Bravo. So important, in fact, that the show is talking about the special effects, and the giant artificial ship, and the work done to make the film as accurate as possible and all kinds of relative facts comparing the accuracy of the film to the real Titanic and it’s tragedy, and every now and then, it was interspersed with clips from the movie. Sid looked really bored, and even, a little annoyed as he was slouched like a boneless sack of man in his theatrical seating. He puffed and sighed and finally stood up from the comfort of his fancy movie seat.
Sid walked through the kitchen, which was a narrow little thing next to the dining area. He picked a Mountain Dew out of the refrigerator and walked into the office. He had free reign in the apartment today. Usually his girlfriend also had Mondays and Tuesdays off so they could be together, but today she received a call and went into work. Apparently, someone didn’t show up for work and she went in to get some extra hours.
In the office, the computer was already powered on. For that matter, there was rarely a time when it wasn’t. It sat on a desk in the middle of the room. Behind the desk is the chair and the wall, the other side of which was the living room. Across the room from the computer desk is a sturdy shelf with a smaller television with its own cable box. Sid switched on the television and set the cable box to the History Channel. He then sat down on the black plush computer chair (also none of that silly leather upholstery because who really needs sweaty legs and thighs when using the computer while wearing boxers?) and opened up the typing program on his computer. He was in the mood to write a review:
Year (Sid didn’t write in the correct year of its release because he didn’t know and would look it up later online.)
Directed by: James Cameron
As we all know, the Titanic was a large cruise vessel, top of the line in its day in the early Twentieth Century. And, as we all know, it was sold by the press of the time as an “unsinkable” ship. So to those of us who love irony, it came as little surprise that the ship hit an iceberg and sank to the bottom of the northern Atlantic like a rock filled with people and, eventually, water. Down to the depths it went, blub-blub-blub! Terrible tragedy, that!
Many years later, in the 1990’s, James Cameron decided that the Titanic tragedy just wasn’t enough of a tragedy. So he made this three-hour marathon of trite to commemorate the disaster in the most “Hollywood” of ways. Yay! I’m sure that since this is being typed and not spoken, you may have had trouble deciphering that my use of the word “yay” was purely sarcastic. Rest assured, however, it is supremely sarcastic. The film is bursting with ridiculousness and clichés while simultaneously insulting the viewer with retarded high-school attitudes and cheap emotional jabs. For instance, two young lovers decide they want to have some sex, and they do it, like all teenagers, in a goddamn car. That’s right. A car. On the Titanic. The only driving from this car is the crazy it’s driven me. Way to pander to the teenagers, Jimmy! Hey, why not have a bunch of people getting stoned while you’re at it? I mean, if you’re just going to pander to empty-headed teenagers, why not go all-out? “Hey duuuude! This Titanic movie ROCKS! It’s got these two pretty girls making out in a CAR on a BOAT and people get STONED!” Maybe you didn’t think you could sell yourself any shorter, but you just didn’t work hard enough at it! Also, in case you didn’t catch it, I was referring to Leonardo DiCRAPIO as a girl. I wouldn’t have to explain this to most people, but just in case you’re a huge fan of this movie, I knew I’d have to dumb things down for you, you no-taste commie.
James Cameron had at his disposal limitless wealth and high-tech gadgetry to make this gigantic (“Titanic-sized!!!!”) epic of his, thus forsaking the Terminator franchise allowing it to wallow in a swamp of suck. Yet, instead of using clever camera tricks, CG technology and miniatures, he decided he’d just waste a bunch of money rebuilding the damn boat just to make this film. That’s right, Cameron built his own Titanic—to sink. The ship isn’t even accurate. Why the hell would he waste so much money rebuilding the ship if he’s only going to do a half-assed job of it? It’s smaller than the actual vessel, but not by a whole lot! Why make something that’s 90% to scale? Talk about a Titanic-sized error! Bah! You fail, Cameron!
The actors are just annoying and insipid beyond belief. We have the fairy princess himself, Leonardo DiCaprio as the star of the show. He’s such a flamboyant pretty boy that it’s difficult to decide if he’s really a man or a woman. His very presence proves once again that ol’ Jimmy Cameron is catering to the teenagers, mostly the girls of course. The woman who is actually supposed to be a woman in this movie is Kate Winslet, who is one of the most beautiful women in all of moviedom. Which brings me to the one highlight of this pitfall of human existence: We get to see her tits. And that’s all the good this film has to offer. Why on earth she’d let some total lunatic on a boat draw her naked, however, is another matter altogether. Apparently, she’s just playing some early 20th Century slut akin to a modern Lindsey Lohan who will clearly do anything for attention. And that’s just not right for the beautiful Kate.
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About My Style
My biggest inspirations are Rod Serling and various writers of classic E.C. horror, crime, and suspense comics, along with the inventive horror and science fiction of 80's and 90's cinema. So add George Romero, John Carpenter, and Stephen King to that list. This page gives a nice sampling of some of my narrative works.