Monday, May 28, 2012

Armageddon Devices Poll

Last week I held a poll as to which superpower commonly seen in movies you would like to have. It was a three way tie:

The ability to get in a fight that should send you to the hospital, and have all your cuts bruises gone in the next scene. This is an incredible superpower that most of the characters in action movies have.

Instant Clean-up
Being able to pull yourself out of any liquid sticky mess, have your clothes cleaned and pressed, and hair and make-up expertly done. In Star Wars they could say “the force” cleaned them up after they escaped from the garbage pile, in most other movies it's just a unmentioned superpower.

Hack non-computer powered systems.
The power to use a laptop to hack anything, even things that aren't powered by computers. “24” loved to do this, villains would hack the natural gas pipelines or nuclear reactors (Yes nuclear reactors do have computers, but in the US the ones controlling the core haven't been updated since the 70s so instructions from modern computers would overload them). With the awesome power that these hackers have they could easily get rid of their enemies. “Oh no, they've just hacked into the major support beam for this building!”

Of course, having all three would be awesome. You could get in a fight, fall into a garbage pit, pull yourself up and have you hair and clothes be spotless as you hacked non-computer powered systems. The sad thing is that is almost cliché in movies.

Next poll:

Everyone loves sci-fi devices, but few people notice the secondary systems that are activated to make the main ones work. I would love to get my hands on some of these.

Which Sci-Fi device would you like to have?

The Physics Inhibitor

As seen in, well, every sci-fi movie ever.

Need to go faster than light, need to turn a 397,805 metric ton starship on a dime without turning the crew into pancakes. No problem. Turn on the Physics Inhibitor and the laws of the universe don't apply.

Portable Time Dilation

As seen in every Micheal Bay movie.

This is activated after the Physics Inhibitor has been running for an hour of so. Are you in the middle of a countdown but have lots of stuff to do? Activate this handy device and you'll have all the time you need.

Micheal Bay loves this device. In Armageddon they had 14 minutes to blow up the asteroid. It was a full 50 minutes of real film time before they did. That includes Bruce Willis' five minute speech that he started at the one minute mark.

Personal Teleportation

Ever find yourself in the middle of the action. When its over you need to give a caring speech to the loved one of the person who sacrificed their life so that n-people can go on, but they are somewhere else. No problem just use your Personal Teleporter.

Again in Armageddon this was used way too blatantly. Liv Tyler was on the visitor balcony of NASA's mission control, staring down at Billy Bob Thornton, she senses someone behind her, turns and faces Billy Bob Thornton.

Multiple Launch Capabilities

NASA learned that a rocket launch is exciting. They film it from many angles. But sometimes thats just not exciting enough. In order to make it super exciting have the space ships launch several times repeatedly. In Armageddon the two shuttles launched six times each.

I won't get into the selective gravity, windy airless objects, or ability for a motorcycle to travel cross country faster than a private jet. To answer what you are thinking, “Yes I watched Armageddon again last night, and yes Armageddon tired of it.”

As always vote on the upper left hand corner of the page.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE


Stephanie Barr said...

I can't watch Armageddon, especially if I've been eating. I watched it the first time (only time all the way through?) with my first husband who's less than keen on critical thinking or science.

As I cringed and flinched at the butchery of all things science or logical on the screen, he chastised me for taking it too seriously. It's all in fun. Let it go. Even as they dodged meteoroids (which travel as fast as 70 km/s, hundreds of times as fast as a bullet) with their souped up Shuttle conveniently composed of titanium.

And even he turned to me and said, "You're right," when they escaped the Shuttle Bay via gattlin gun, a must on any extraterrestrial vehicle.

I've only seen it once, but it left a stain on my brain I still haven't managed to wipe clean.

Darrell B. Nelson said...

I was going to add variable mass weapons to the list. More blatant in that movie than in others. Every once matters so pack up two gattlin guns per flight. As well as the portable machine gun Steve Bechimimi used. But lock up the 9mm.
It's bad enough he butchers science and logic, but he butchers literary devices as well. Countdowns are exciting, that's half the reason microwave ovens are so popular you get a countdown before dinner, but starting the 14 minute countdown with 50 minutes left (yes I timed it) just destroys its purpose.