Four Letter Nerd

From The Nerdery(mailbag): The Punisher Remake, TV Shows, and Best Gaming Consoles


Here we are again, taking on your questions like a 5lb burrito, paying for our answers later. Hopefully everyone has had a great week, and is ready for an awesome weekend.


To the bag we go!!
1. Nathan – What is the best gaming console when you consider best games specific to that console, best overall/max gameplay, ease of playing games, additional features? I look forward to your disbanding 4LN over this discussion.


Cam – I think the console war really comes down to personal preference, especially now that the system specs are getting closer and closer. My favorite console is the Xbox 360. I like the offset analog sticks and the feel of the controller in general. The Kinect is okay, but only used when I want to feel like I am in the Minority Report. As far as exclusives go, Halo is a big one for me. My wife and I have played through the campaign mode of every game in the series, and we really enjoy them. Will I get the Xbox One? Yes, eventually. Will I get the PS4? Probably not, but I think it will be an awesome system. As long as Star Wars Battlefront III is on both systems I will be sticking with Xbox.


Stephen – I’m the least “gamer” one of this crew, but I agree with Cam that personal preference is going to reign here. The consoles have started to have so much more in common with one another that it seems like the only major discernable differences are console exclusive games. And even that is becoming less and less common. While there are many other reason, the only GAME that keeps loyal to the PS3 would be Infamous. I just love the open world playing, and having the option to be champion for justice or be a murderous assface.


Robbie- I have been so far behind on the current generation of consoles. I just bought an Xbox 360 maybe 3 years ago. I’ve never had 1 particular console that has been my absolute favorite. The Gamecube is the closest one I would lean towards, just because some of my favorite games were exclusive to that console. Picking a favorite out of the current generation, I’m torn on though. I would have to choose PS3 because online play is free (I also hate having to pay for Xbox live to watch Netflix, which I also pay for) and the exclusive catalog for PS3 crushes Xbox in my opinion (Metal Gear, The Last Of Us, Uncharted and God Of War to name a few). Looking forward to the next generation, I think Microsoft and Sony are heading in two totally different directions with their consoles. Xbox One wants to be the gaming console for the “everyman” and they want to focus on being entertainment first. Microsoft has a lot of ground to make up before this console was has ever started, due to DRM and other controversy. Sony however, will continue doing with the PS4 what it has done with all the previous PS systems and do gaming first, second and third.


Bill – I’m not much of a gamer but here’s this:

Ok, I have to go with the Xbox 360 as the most long lasting console. I feel like it’s the system I fell in love with. For most guys (here at 4ln at least) gaming for them started with the Atari. But for me, it was 360. I remember having a PS2 but never really loved it. I loved the 360 since the minute I played it the first time, hell my buddy Eric and I have even considered getting 360 controller bro-tats. The Halo games are absolutely amazing, Gears of War was a beautiful franchise, and Saints Row started off as an X-Box exclusive game, so yeah, you’re welcome!

*I do want to say The Last of Us is almost enough for me to give this prestigious award for best console to Play Station 3. I look forward to getting the PS4, no way in hell will I purchase that atrocity known as the X-Box One.


Cody— I’m a playstation guy through and through for two reasons, one I feel they are more innovative when it comes to the game player experience versus Xbox, and two because I trust a hardware company more than I do a software company to make a solid gaming console. PS3 FTW. That might be a weak argument, but I’ve heard more stories of the red ring of death on Xbox than I have on the PS. Not to mention how awesome is it that you can now take a game that you’re playing on your PS and take it to your PSP? Not that I do that, but that is pretty freaking sweet. Also, the PSP is an awesome handheld console. Not sure how long it will be around, but it’s by far the best in my opinion. Favorite game for the PS3 is the God of War series. I love the graphics, the story, the game play, I love the whole damn thing. Take that Bill, Robbie, and Cam!!


2. Josh – Do you think marvel will resurrect The Punisher in any of their upcoming movies, or even a movie of his own again? Frank Castle is a serious badass!


Yes Josh, he is most certainly a badass. In fact, some might say he’s a bad mother… (shut yo mouth!) What? I’m just talkin’ ‘bout Frank.

Earlier this year the film rights for The Punisher, Daredevil, and Ghost Rider all reverted back to Marvel; which seems like a great development until you consider that Marvel is now owned by Disney. Not that they’d be in a big hurry to reboot or revisit any of these characters on film (cause that worked out SOOOO well the first time), but for Daredevil and, to a much lesser extent, Ghost Rider, it really doesn’t matter if they do, because those characters can be done without having to “push the envelope”. It’s possible to script a film around either one of them that is PG-13 and safe for most audiences (as has already been done).

But ol’ Franky is a different story. I’m all about reimagining characters, but the fact is you just won’t have a successful film if you minimize the violence and carnage of The Punisher. There was talk that they may do a “Frank Castle” TV show (with the exclusion of “Punisher” in the title being intentional), which could be interesting if the right creative team was on board, but still how gritty could a Disney-owned Punisher TV series be?

“Today on ‘King of the Castle’: Frank hunts down, tortures, and then finally murders the head of a major drug cartel by wrapping him in razor-wire that’s been soaked in gasoline and setting him on fire. BUT… will he pick up his niece’s birthday cake from the bakery and make it back to her party in time?! Stay tuned for all the hilarious and bloody hijinks!” Sadly, this is probably the best we could hope for, but maybe they’ll surprise us and sell the film rights back to another studio that can bring us the brutal and brooding Frank we all love. Until then, watch this amazing fan-made short, starring Tom Jane and keep the hope alive…


3. Shane – How many shows fail because they are weekly shows, but could be resurrected if the public could mass consume them. My guess is there are a lot of shows that are just solely for entertainment, and not suspenseful enough to bring in an audience each week. My example would be Alphas, a great show, but not a show I would follow each week, but one I would and have watched in mass.


Here’s my perspective, there are a TON of TV to watch. For instance, here’s a list of shows that I’m watching from either my DVR or Netflix (The League, Hell on Wheels, Boardwalk Empire, Breaking Bad, pretty soon will be The Walking Dead, Planning to finally start Son’s of Anarchy, Duck Dynasty {guilty pleasure}The New Girl, Parks and Recreation, and whenever Work-A-holics comes on, Face Off, the Cosplay show has my attention, not to mention I watch a lot of football currently for fantasy football reasons) and I watch all of this in about a 2 hour time slot every night; so I don’t have a ton of time to fit these in. If you’ll notice half of these aren’t even on yet, but they are on my mind to record or go spend time watching. There’s a rule that we try and stick by in writing on this blog (which doesn’t always hold true {cough Bill}) Be, Funny, Be Smart, Be Innovative, or be a mixture of those three. If TV shows don’t capture audiences immediately I feel it is because it is lacking in one of those areas, I also think it is because it has missed the money demographic which is 18-35 year olds (not that we have money, but it’s the target everyone wants watching their shows). If that age range isn’t watching when the show comes on, or they don’t catch wind of it, it will ultimately fail. Also, sometimes the shows just suck. They story lines get dry, or become so crazy you feel like you’re in a circus watching a trapeze artist about to slip and fall. Example, heroes honestly sucked its last season, and it had started sucking half way through its second. I watched heroes from the beginning and when it first came on, I was in love with it. It had everything, mystery, suspense, pretty awesome story line, but after they saved the cheer leader everything went downhill. Another good question is how many shows could succeed if they were on a channel like Showtime or HBO? Trueblood has lost me after this last season, but they had 5 ½ solid seasons. I say that saying, if they could be a little risqué would they survive? I think so. To answer your question, a lot could be resurrected in the Netflix realm, but they would only be so successful if what got them canned in the first placed never changed (IE writers, story lines, actors) If they aren’t suspenseful, or funny, or smart, or just completely different, I don’t think you can resurrect it for more than one extra season. — Cody


4. Nathan (again) – I was wondering if other countries have superheroes and what are some of the more popular ones? I’m not talking about characters created by USAns that are from another country, but another country’s set of characters, like Germany’s Eichtenheisen Man.

The U.S. definitely leads the world in superheroes per capita and popularity, but several other countries have entered the fray. Japan, which is the closest to the U.S. in superhero output, has several live-action TV shows including Ultraman and Super Sentai, which is the basis for the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers and whatever spunoff from that show (Super-Dino-Time-Forest-Ranger-Zord’s? I haven’t kept up with it since Jason left two decades ago). Japanese Anime also has several superheroes, such as Dragon Ball Z and Sailor Moon, but they don’t necessarily fit the American mold. The biggest difference between U.S. and Japanese series is the longevity. The U.S. constantly reboots and re-imagines their heroes, while Japanese runs are generally a lot shorter.

Canada has Captain Canuck, which debuted in 1975. The first Captain Canuck was set in the futuristic 1993 where Canada had become the most powerful (and presumably still the politest) country in the world.

India has Nagraj, Super Commano Dhurva and Doga. Argentina has Cybersix, who by day is a female, leather-clad heroine, whose secret identity is a male, high-school literature teacher… Malaysia has Kapten Malaysia (Malaysian Superman), and Keluang Man (Malaysian Batman). It should be noted that a lot of these heroes follow the American comic model. – Cam



That was pretty long winded. Hope everyone has a great weekend! Up, up, and away!!! —4LN

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Cody Russell

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