Friday, May 16, 2014

Losing a friend

Several months back, it may have been more than a year, I noticed that one of my Facebook friends, a guy I had met through playing Diplomacy, didn't seem to be participating in on-line discussions as often as he had.  I asked a friend we had in common what was going on, and I was informed that this person had cancer.

Well I just found out that the Duck has passed.  Really liked the guy, more so than most people.  The Duck was the kind of guy who was easy-going and naturally seemed to get along with everybody.  I didn't know him particularly well, but in another sense I did.  The nature of the Diplomacy-playing hobby is that you see people seldom, but when you do meet, the interactions are fairly intense.  The people involved are often very socially aware and we can make friends that last a long time.

Anyway, my own operation is coming up in less than two weeks.  I delayed it a week so I could go to a gaming convention.  I asked the scheduler if it there was an urgent need to schedule it ASAP and she said no.

In the aftermath of the positive colonoscopy, I've decided to also see a dermatologist to get him to look at all my freckles and moles.  Worried about melanomas now.  Am I becoming a hypochondriac?  I don't think so.  Having decided that I'm missing at least one anti-cancer allele, this puts me in a weird frame of mind.  I'll probably have to have regular colonoscopies for the rest of my life.

Meh.  Will miss Duck at DixieCon.

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Best of Bond, Part V

The Timothy Dalton Years

And the series moves forward at its glacial pace.  Today we consider the two contributions by Timothy Dalton.  Personally, I enjoyed both The Living Daylights and Licence to Kill, but neither did particularly well at the box office.

The Dalton films moved away from the increasingly comic (and increasingly ludicrous) themes of the later Moore films, and tried to bring back a more serious tone, as had characterized the earlier Connery offerings. They succeeded to some extent, but moviegoers didn't respond to Dalton's darker tone.

Let's recall the criteria in this series of evaluations again:

  • Bond – who the actor is, how good he is, and what he brings to the role
  • the Villain- Mr. Big, Scaramanga, etc.  I judge the films on how compelling the villain is.
  • the Bond Women – some films have few, some have many, but I’m pretty sure all have at least one. The quality ranges from Denise Richards’s absurd nuclear physicist to, of course, Mrs. Bond herself, not to mention Pussy Galore
  • the Good Guys – M, Q, Moneypenny, Felix Leiter in his many incarnations and other sidekicks
  • the Henchmen on the other side like Jaws, Oddjob, and Nick-Nack.
  • the gadgets – not just judging how neat the gadgets are, but whether they were unwisely allowed to take over the film (as often happened with the later Roger Moore filims)
  • whatever else I happen to think of

And now we move to

The Living Daylings