Pandragon Dan

Pandragon Dan

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Top Five Super Villains that SHOULD be in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

SPOILER WARNING: This blog may contain spoilers for Agent’s of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Marvel universe in general (comics and films)

 

 
 

I dunno about anyone else, but for me, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been very hit or miss. And sadly there have been more misses than hits in my opinion. Don’t get me wrong, I like the characters (May is kick ask, Skye is feisty as all hell and Agent Coulson – well he’s just awesome!) and the humour in it is typical Whedon. But... the storyline is VERY slow at the moment. They seem to be more times referencing the current Marvel films rather than working them into the story (though I’ll admit that they got this right with The Well episode) and they really were dragging on that Coulson plot as to how his survived (though thankfully they are making headways with it).

 

But my biggest problem with the show? NO SUPERVILLIANS! I mean, come on! In a show set in a world of superheroes, you think they’d have more super-powered baddies for the agents to fight. And considering, according to an interview with Joss Whedon himself, they are supposed to be the “underdogs” of the Marvel Universe, I think having super villains for them to battle would be a great idea – because it would force them to use their own wits without having to rely on Captain America, Iron Man or the other Avengers. But no... so far the only thing REMOTELY close to super villains is Dr. Franklin Hall (Graviton) and... *sigh* Scorch. Scorch? Seriously? Was Toaster already taken?

 

My point is that there is only so much we can take of criminals/organisations using alien/advanced/magic technology without it getting stale. And since Arrow has managed to fit in everyone from Deathstroke to Solomon Grundy – even Ra’s Al Ghul has been mentioned more than once – then Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has no excuse!

 

I am aware that there are certain villains they can’t use for copyright reasons – but it’s not as if the Marvel Universe is short of a few villains! So today, I present the Top Five Villains that should be in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. In my opinion and in no particular order.

 

 

 
 

1. The Taskmaster

 

This guys is just BEGGING to be in this show. In fact, in the comics, he’s even fought for and against S.H.I.E.L.D themselves. He’s most famous for this fights with the Avengers, Moon Knight and Deadpool to name a few, but I always thought he was one of the more underrated villains in the Marvel Universe.

 

The Taskmaster is an expert in many forms of combat, is an excellent swordsman and marksman and is in peak physical condition. But that’s not what makes him so badass. He has the power of photographic reflexes – meaning that he can copy the move of anyone he sees! This makes him, in my opinion, one of the most dangerous enemies in the Marvel universe – as he’s able to match heroes like Spider-Man, Captain America and even Daredevil in combat! Whilst he cannot mimic mutant or other superhuman abilities (like Cyclops optic blast for instance) he CAN go toe to toe with many of the heavy hitters. Heck, he once even took on the entire Avengers by himself! He can even mimic voices on occasion!

 

Taskmaster would be a brilliant addition to the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. series. I mean think about it, how can the team fight against someone that can mimic their moves flawlessly? It would require them to use their brains – not their brawn – to defeat him. Also I think a fight between him and May would be just cool to watch! Maybe they could introduce him as a character that underwent S.H.I.E.L.D. experimentation, but it went wrong and he sought revenge. Or something like that. And with his ability to mimic voices, he can easily use that to break into S.H.I.E.L.D and cause all kinds of discombobulations!

 

So I submit this guy as a prime candidate for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. I think he would be awesome!

 

 

 
 

2. The Wrecking Crew

 

Seeing as they’ve already introduced Asgardian technology into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. I don’t think this one is too much of a stretch.

 

The Wrecking Crew are four thugs that were granted superhuman strength and near invulnerability by an enchanted crowbar. They are kinda like the go-to guys for super villains when they want things broken. And they do their jobs very well – well they wouldn’t be called the Wrecking Crew otherwise! Whilst they aren’t the sharpest tools in the box, they certainly make up with this with pure brute strength!

 

Now, they have done something somewhat like this in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. so far. In the episode The Well, a pagan terrorist ground searched for parts of an Asgardian staff so that they can use it to – well, I guess destroy the world. But honestly, I’d prefer to see the real Wrecking Crew come into it. COULD be a good opportunity to have Thor as a guest appearance in an episode if the studios allow it. Or it could just an opportunity to have the Agents fight against a seemingly unstoppable group of enemies.

 

Either way, I think it would be pretty cool. As long as they lose the somewhat laughable attire.

 

 

 

 

3. Baron Zemo

 

This one was requested to me by a friend of mine, but I think this guy would be cool to add to this list. I mean, this guy's is one of Marvel’s heavy hitters – having been in several high profile super villain teams – from the Masters of Evil to the Thunderbolts.

 

Next to Red Skull, Heinrich Zemo was one of Captain America’s most dangerous opponents. A brilliant scientist working for the Nazi party – who just happened to ALSO be a sadistic psychopath – Zemo’s face was permanently stuck to his hood when Captain America foiled a plan of his to use a new super strong adhesive to stop the Allies. But Zemo didn’t give up there, he carried on making weapons that would help take down Captain America and the allies. He even returned to fight Cap years later after he was frozen for decades and thawed out by the Avengers, eventually meeting his end in a final battle with Cap.

 

But Zemo’s legacy would not stop there, his son – Helmut – would take up his father’s legacy and seek revenge against Captain America for the death of his father. Since then, he has gone on to fight pretty much every major hero in the Marvel Universe. Sometimes working with others, sometimes on his own, Zemo can stand up alongside Doctor Doom, Magneto and the Red Skull himself (who actually was his tutor) to battle the heroes of the Marvel Universe.

 

He would be a good addition – considering that they can always bring HYDRA into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. at some point. And why not? Maybe Zemo in this universe could be a pupil of Red Skull and he wants to carry on HYDRA’s legacy? Either way, I think he could be a pretty good addition to the show and one that the agents would have to fight hard to defeat.

 

 

 

 

4. Carnage

 

I know that Sony has a lot of the rights to the Spider-Man baddies – but as far as I’m aware, Cletus Kasady, aka Carnage, has not made any live action appearance, so there is nothing to say that he CAN’T be in this show yet!

 

Carnage is the “offspring” of Spider-Man enemy Venom. Whilst Eddie Brock was in prison, his symbiote reproduced and bonded with Cletus Kasady. And Kasady is pretty much the kinda psychopathic individual that you DON’T want to give superpowers to! Carnage is possibly the most insane person in the Marvel Universe – he kills without discrimination and without mercy. He’s so evil that even Spider-Man and Venom were forced to put their differences aside to stop him. There was even a comic book series called Maximum Carnage (one of my fav comic serials) where Carnage and some other villains go on a killing spree down New York, causing many heroes to band together to stop him.

 

They could easily put Carnage into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., maybe having him as an experiment gone wrong. They did something similar to that in the Ultimate Marvel universe so I don’t see this being a problem. Plus, I think it would be pretty cool to have Carnage going on a killing spree to the tune of Carnage Rules by Green Jelly – which ironically is what they used in the soundtrack to the video game.

 

So listen up you fools - don't you know that CARNAGE RULES!!!

 

 

 

 

5. Chameleon

 

Now, admittedly, all I really know about this guy is what I’ve seen in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, but in one plot, the Chameleon (who had the ability to change appearance of anyone) masqueraded as Nick Fury as part of an assassination attempt – at least from what I remember – it’s been a while since I’ve seen that cartoon.

 

But even so, the idea of someone that can change their appearance like – well, a chameleon – is a sure fire storyline for this series. Do I need to really go on? A guy that can change appearance? HELLO! You can have him infiltrate S.H.I.E.L.D. and then maybe take on the images of the other characters – turning them against each other. It’s a storyline that I know has been done a lot of times before, but I think it would work in this context.

 

Maybe they could remake this storyline from the cartoon and have the Chameleon try and assassinate Nick Fury (because it would be cool to have him back in the series again!) and the team have to work out who he is. It could be a really good story about paranoia and all that jazz. Yeah, it would be pretty basic – but sometimes it’s best to keep things simple and not overly complicated.

 

 

So that’s my pick for the Top Five super villains. If by some small change that anyone that works on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is reading this - PLEASE consider the above to appear in your show? Pretty please? If not for me, do it for this kitten.

 

 

 
 

Which villains do YOU want to see make an appearance in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? List them in the comments below and join me next time for...

 

 

 
 

Huh? What the hell was that?

 

Er, sorry guys... I’ll see you all later... looks like I have some bugs in my blog at the mo...

 

 

--------------------------

PANDRAGON

 

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Top Five Awesomely Kick Ass Female Characters (International Women's Day Special)

I realise that I’ve done one of these types of Top Five’s before, but to be honest – I wasn’t really happy with my first list and have been wanting a chance to redo it – as I think I have MUCH stronger examples in this one. And seeing that today is International Women’s Day – I’m flying my feminist flags and celebrating today by bring you my pick for the Top Five Awesomely Kickass Heroines!

 

Now, just to clarify, awesomely kickass doesn’t mean that all the girls on this list are super powered goddesses that can beat the tar out of anyone that crosses them (in fact I have deliberately excluded many superheroines from this list for the sake of having it as balanced as possible), it just means that all the females on this list are awesome in their own right. These are the type of girls that can stand on their own, be there when they are needed, and don’t need a man to save them (although a couple on this list do – but they still get their moment of awesome)! There probably will be a few spoilers in this post, so read at your own risk.

 

So, in no particular order, let’s celebrate International Women’s Day by counting down the Top Five...

 

Crowd Chanting: ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA! ELSA!

 

 

Ah, yes! Elsa from Frozen. Arguable the most popular female at the moment! Indeed I have heard a lot about this character and been told that she is one of the greatest feminist icons in ages. So it would be silly of me NOT to include her on this list.

 

However, here’s the thing... I haven’t actually SEEN Frozen yet, even though it is on my list of films to see. And the rules for Top Five’s state that I can only include things that I have seen/read/played in order to give a fair review of it. So, sorry, Elsa – you’re not getting ANY love this time.

 

Hushed gasps from the Internet – followed by a barrage of boos and hisses.

 

 

OK! OK! OK! Calm down people! Here, maybe this first one will cheer you up!

 

 

 

 

1. Belle from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast

 

Hopefully this will make up for not including Elsa on the list! Hopefully...

 

Now, I’m gonna be honest with you guys – I am NOT a fan of Disney Princesses (geez, hardly into my first one and I’ve already PO’d most of my readers!). That’s not to say that I HATE them exactly – most of them have a good personality and stand out on their own. But for the most part, they are little more than damsel in distresses that serve little more than to be rescued – and everyone knows I HATE those types of characters. There are, of course, obvious exceptions – and Belle is one of them.

 

Technically though, she isn’t a Princess to begin with – she’s a regular girl with real dreams and aspirations. That makes her more relatable and realistic compared to a lot of other Disney Princesses. However, a fateful encounter with the Beast and she becomes the key to saving him from his curse. Whilst the Beast is a jerk to her at the beginning, he soon warms to her and she sees the good in him.

 

Yes, Belle DOES have to be rescued from Gaston at the end – but in my opinion it’s Belle that turns out the hero of the story? Why? Ok, I suppose I should give a SPOILER warning here, but if you don’t know how this story ends by now then where the hell have you been? Lol. Anyway, as Beast lays dying, Belle declares her love for him, breaking the curse and saving his life. She saves the Beast – not the other way around! And come on, admit it, you cried at the end when you thought Beast was dead – it was a very sad scene.

 

Belle’s greatest strength is her love and the ability to see PAST the monster and into the human inside. And love is the greatest strength of all in my opinion. Belle is a tough cookie in her own right, but it’s her love that frees the Beast from his damnation. And, at the risk of losing any manliness I may have, I love a good romantic story (blame Mysti Parker for that – her books turned me round!).

 

Belle, we salute you in honour of International Women’s Day – you prove that love can truly conquer all!

 

 

 

 

2. She-Ra from She-Ra: Princess of Power

 

Yeah, I know I said I wasn’t gonna include many superheroines in this list – but I didn’t say I wasn’t gonna include any! I decided to pick one for the list – and I went for my favourite of all time! She-Ra: Princess of Power!

 

The twin sister to He-Man, She-Ra was created to introduce a wider audience to the Master of the Universe franchise – in this case the female market. And whilst she didn’t last as long as her brother did, she arguably attracted a greater following and fan base. I myself was one of them and still am to this day! I know that there had been plenty of superheroines in the past (Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Emma Peel to name a few), but She-Ra was the first superheroine I got into. Until I saw She-Ra, most of the female characters in cartoons were just damsel in distresses. Then I saw She-Ra, and saw this uberpowerful woman totally dominating everyone WITHOUT the need of a man – I was just in awe. I think if anything, She-Ra taught me to respect women and... er...

 

Ok, ok, I had the hots for She-Ra – there I said it! But come on – even today I still think she is one of the sexiest women in fiction. She combined beauty and raw power to create an unstoppable force that will make sure all the bad guys pay. BUT she also encompasses a strong moral fibre to protect those in need, including the ones she cares about. If it wasn’t for She-Ra, there would be no Daniar Dragonkin from the Draconica series.

 

So to She-Ra, we salute you! Thank you for teaching me to respect women, for showing the strength of females and for showing us that you don’t need a man to protect you. And what’s more, she does all this – whilst wearing the most ridiculously low cut top and short skirt, and hardly showing ANY cleavage or panty shots! Now THAT’S classy! XD

 

 

 

 

3. Olenna Redwyne from Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire

 

When people talk about their favourite female characters in this series, the most prominent ones on people’s lips are usually Daenarys or Arya. But for me, if you want a no-nonsense, balls to the wall (ooer) female in this series, look no further than Olenna Redwyne!

 

In Westerosi culture, women generally have a somewhat diminished role in society – and most of the time they were just there to look pretty and speak only when spoken to. Olenna totally does away with that! This is a woman that will speak her mind and she will NOT be silenced. Her tongue is sharp as her wit, gaining her the nickname “Queen of Thorns” – and woe betide anyone that is on the receiving end of one of the taunts!

 

Olenna has been around for a few years and seen all the hypocrisy and bloodshed that politics and war have brought. She has lost her husband to war and now her granddaughter is to be wed to the horrible King Joffery. In her twilight years, she sees no reason to hold back and speaking her mind. She is quick to let you know what she feels about you and won’t sugar-coat her words in anyway, whether you’re a peasant or prince. And she does it in the wittiest way she can, silencing any male that dares speak back to her. Even Tywin and Tyrion are put in their place at her words – and few can honestly do that!

 

Now, I don’t want to go into too much detail about her character as I don’t want to give any spoilers for those watching Game of Thrones – at least before season 4 comes up. But trust me, this woman will make a large impact in the story. Let me just say this, Olenna is awesome because she does what she wants, when she wants and HOW she wants. And in a society where men are supposed to be in control, that is a scary thought for most of them.

 

And if you still don’t think Olenna is one of the strongest feminists in fiction – in Game of Thrones she’s played by Dame Diana Rigg, one of the greatest feminist icons of her time. And, let’s be honest, Diana Rigg is just awesome anyway!

 

So let’s send a salute to Olenna Redwyne – a woman that shows that you can be a lady without needing to sit and look pretty. All you need is fire in your belly and a sharp tongue!

 

 

 
 

4. Carrie Mathison from Homeland

 

Now this is a character that I’ve wanted to talk about for a LONG time. Carrie Mathison is, in my opinion, one of the strongest females in television. She is the perfect mixture of a strong, independent woman, mixed with heartbreaking vulnerabilities. She’s the sort of woman that you just want to give a big hug to and say “You’re doing fine, girl. Everything will be ok”.

 

A C.I.A. operative in Homeland, Carrie is brought into a conspiracy when Nicolas Brodie (a soldier that was lost in the Middle East for many years) is found and returned to US soil. But, is he still an American soldier – or has he been brainwashed by a terrorist cell? Carrie has her suspicions and the more she digs into Nicolas Brodie, the more her personal feelings shine through for him and conflict with her work ethic.

 

Carrie is a kind of “Dirty Harry” character, always willing to do what it takes to try and stop the bad guys – but often halted by plenty of red tape and procedures and all other crap that stops her from doing the right thing. But Carrie is resolute in her beliefs and will find ways round it, whether through her frienemy (yes frienemy) Saul Barrington (who has one of the COOLEST beards ever). Often, Saul knows that Carrie is right – whether he wants to admit it or not, and will try and help her where he can. It’s Carrie’s Never-Say-Die attitude that I think makes her a great character.

 

But there is another reason – Carrie suffers from bi-polar disorder and she is on heavy medication. Speaking as someone that does occasionally get huge bouts of depression, and who also knows people with bi-polar disorder, I really appreciate this level of nuance. Often Carrie will be erratic in her behaviour – up one moment, down the next, then breaking down another. This adds a level of uncertainty to her character – is she right, or is it just her condition blinding her? Even Carrie herself doubts herself on occasion – and we really hope that she is right. It’s this character trait that makes her so loveable and you support her every step of the way.

 

My only complaint about her? Ever since Claire Danes has become Executive Producer of Homeland from season 3 onwards, it feels that ALL the attention seems to be focused on Carrie – and as such many other characters get pushed to the background. Don’t get me wrong, I love Carrie – but there ARE other characters to drive the story.

 

This aside though, I have no problem in repeating my earlier statement that Carrie is one of the best female leads to appear on TV in years. So to Carrie Mathison, we give you a salute. You show us that you can show vulnerabilities and emotions – and yet STILL be a strong role model. Not just for women, but for ANYONE that suffers from a mental disorder. You’re doing fine, girl.

 

 

 

 

5. Ellen Ripley from the Alien Movies

 

Do I even need to say anything – it’s ELLEN RIPLEY from the Alien movies.

 

Ok, I suppose I better for the sake of the post. XD

 

Ellen Ripley is definitely one of my favourite heroines in fiction. In fact she’s probably most people’s favourite heroine – and one that has made Sigourney Weaver a household name. And what’s not to like about her? She goes through such an amazing journey from the first film to Alien Resurrection (and even plenty of stories in the expanded universe), and has to fight some of the most terrifying monsters the Universe has to offer.

 

In Alien, she becomes an unlikely hero, being the sole survivor of an xenomorph attack on her ship (well her and the cat!). At the time, considering how most females in horror movies were little more than “Scream Queens” or dead bodies – the idea that Ripley actually stands up to the beast and fights back was a big thing. How can forget the awesome moment when Ripley blasts the alien out into space? Now that was cool!

 

In Aliens, she is reluctantly brought along with a group of marines to help clear out a colony that has been invested by millions of the little beggars. Discovering a lone survivor in the form of Newt, Ripley becomes a surrogate mother to her – and in newt she finds new strength. After newt is captured by the xenomorphs, Ripley has to literary go into hell itself to drag her out – coming face to face with the Alien Queen. It’s almost like Dante’s Inferno, with Ripley going to the very bowels to face the devil herself.

 

When we think the alien queen is destroyed, she comes back for one last attack, going after newt once again. And this is when Ripley gets her crowning moment of awesome when she steps out of the cargo bay, powering the loader suit, walks up to the queen and says the immortal lines “Get away from her you BITCH!”

 

I LOVE this line! It really is one of those “Oh hell yeah, it’s on now!” moments. And the fight scene is just epic! A true battle of good versus evil, David versus Goliath, Liverpool F.C versus Manchester United... and so on! It’s the moment where Ripley has lost all her fear and she is going to confront her demons.

 

There’s not much more to say about Ripley – as I’m sure I’ve covered everything needed to be said. So let’s just raise a salute to Ellen Ripley, in honour of International Women’s Day for – hell, just for being Ellen Ripley! She’s just awesome!

 

 

With so many strong females out there, I’m sure I missed out a lot of your favourites. So please tell me, who are your favourite fictional females? Please leave a comment below to let me know. Thanks for reading guys, Happy International Women’s Day and... huh?

 

 

Oh, hey Zarracka – and Elsa?

 

Zarracka: Yeah, haven’t you heard? Me and Elsa are BFFF’s.

 

Me: BFFF’s?

 

Zarracka: Best Frozen Friends Forever XD. Anyway, what’s this I hear about you NOT including Elsa in this list? What, have you got a death wish or something?

 

Me: Oh... that! Well... as I said, I haven’t seen Frozen, so I couldn’t include her on the list...

 

Zarracka: You haven’t seen Frozen? HELLO! The best selling Disney film of all time, multiple award winner AND the only Disney film in ages where the girls save the day?

 

Elsa: Not to mention the song Let It Go is the most popular song around at the moment!

 

Me: Yeah... I actually don’t like that song...

 

Elsa: (fixes me with a glare that could melt ice) What... did you say?

 

Me: Er... I'm not saying it’s a bad song... I just... really... don’t think it’s the best song ever... It's ok, I guess. That's... just my opinion...

 

(Elsa and Zarracka look at each other – and I know instantly that I’m screwed!)

 

Zarracka: Did he just insult your song? Your OSCAR WINNING SONG?

 

Elsa: Let’s ice this sucker!

 

 

 

Me: No, no, no, NOOOOOOO!!!

 

 

 
 
 

Zarracka: Don’t worry folks, we’ll thaw him out for the next blog. Maybe... ;)

 

Kisses Zarracka and Elsa x x x x x

 

 

 

--------------------------

PANDRAGON

 

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Disclaimer: Zarracka Dragonkin is my character - but all other characters/images are owned by respective copyright holders. Their use is purely for this blog and I claim no ownership of them whatsoever.

 

Additional Disclaimer: Don't **** with Disney Princesses! XD

 

Picture of Zarracka and Elsa by http://elangkarosingo.deviantart.com/

Top Five Survival Horror Games

This post is sort of a belated Halloween post – considering that I didn’t have time to do anything yesterday. But hope you all had a good Halloween – and for you trick or treaters you got lots of candy!

 

 

Anyway, I toyed with the idea of doing a Halloween themed Top Five this year, but I wanted to do something a little different to the usual “Top Five Horror Movies” or “Top Five Monsters” post. So I came up with THIS idea.

 

Survival Horror games have taken off immensely in the last few years, especially in the indie horror market. Arguably, depending on who you speak to, they are even MORE scarier than horror movies. Reason being, because, unlike in a horror movie, you are caught in the centre of the horror – you are the one being hunted and you are involved in the story. That’s a pretty frightening experience in itself!

 

Now, I don’t play a lot of horror games (because, simply, I’m a coward!) but there have been a few that I’ve played that I’ve really enjoyed. So today, in honour of Halloween, I count down my Top Five Survival Horror Games. In no particular order.

 

WARNING: Some sections may contain spoilers.

 

 

 

1. Silent Hill 2

 

When it comes to the best known Survival Horror Franchise, most people often look to the Resident Evil or Silent Hill series. Personally, I was never that fond of Resident Evil, I played the first two games, but that was about it. They weren’t bad games by any means, I just found them generic horror stories that were more about jump scares and terrible voice acting (“You were almost a Jill Sandwich!” XD). Silent Hill had more of a psychological feel to it, with each game layered with themes of inner demons and religious symbolism. Not to mention the shifts to the Otherworld were terrifying and really made you feel like you were trapped in Hell. It just had a bit more depth for me.

 

Even though I know this game is listed as the best in the series, Silent Hill 2 for me is a fantastic game. It has a deep, involving (and also moving) story that is open to interpretation – the monsters are symbolic and perfectly capture the protagonist’s (James Sunderland) inner anguish. And the music – it is both terrifying and beautiful to listen to at the same time, composed by legendary game musician Akira Yamaoka. Oh, and it also has Pyramid Head, one of the freakiest villains of all time.

 

Silent Hill 2 is not a direct sequel to the first Silent Hill game, but a self contained story – whilst at the same time continuing many themes of the first game. James gets a note from his wife to meet her at Silent Hill. The only problem is that his wife died a few years ago. Confused? Don’t worry, it will all be revealed. As James wanders through the town of Silent Hill, he is besieged by monsters and unrelenting fog as he dives deeper into the history of Silent Hill – and his own psychosis.

 

The game is very easy to pick up and play and fun. But it is also extremely creepy to play. Often you are obscured by fog and darkness and have to rely on your flashlight to guide you. You have a radio with you that emits static when monsters are nearby – and when you hear the sound, better ready a weapon! Of course, you can just run past them to converse ammo as well. The monsters are hideous and disturbing creatures, each one a representative of James’s inner anguish or his feelings towards his wife. The town is decaying and rusted, even more so with the Otherworld. You get a real feeling of isolation and loneliness in this game – with no hope of rescue.

 

But for me, it has to be the ending that does it for me. I won’t spoil the ending, but it truly is one of the saddest endings in a video game. Those that believe that the horror genre can’t move you will have to look to this game. And not only that, but there are multiple endings as well. Some of them bleak, others a little happier, some... well, a little strange.

 

Silent Hill 2 has so much psychological depth to it that you could discuss it for years and still not come to a direct conclusion as to WHAT actually happens in the game. But it’s that mix of psychological horror and human emotion that makes this game so enduring and not really a surprise as to why it’s many people’s favourite of the series.

 

 

 

2. The Suffering

 

Now this game I feel is highly underrated amongst horror games. Ok, it may not be the scariest game out there (thought it does have its fair share of creepy moments), but it does have one of the coolest stories and some of the best monster designs I’ve seen in a game.

 

The Suffering has you play a criminal called Torque – a man sent to Abbott prison (on Carnate Island) to be executed for a crime that he may or may not have committed. Supposedly, he murdered his family – but claims to have blacked out when it happened. On his first night in the cells, the Island descends into Hell and many Hellish creatures start attacking the Island. It turns out that Carnate has a history of bloodshed and evil, and Torques rage sparks of a cataclysm that summons all manner of demons forward. Torque must now fight his way through the monsters, whilst discovering the truth about his past.

 

It’s a pretty straightforward game, you run and shoot monsters, but it does add a little twist to it. Every so often, Torque can “Hulk out” and turn into a massive monster for a short period of time, ripping through his enemies like paper and turning them into mush. Interestingly, according to some notes found during the game and conversations with other inmates, Torque actually does not transfer into a monster himself – he just becomes enraged. Therefore, the monster is symbolic of Torque’s inner demons and the anger that he had felt all his life. Nevertheless, it is fun to use this to tear through the monsters!

 

Another thing that’s cool about The Suffering is the mortality element of it. Remember how I said that Torque may or may not have killed his family? Well that’s down for YOU to decide. Throughout the game, you will meet a series of inmates and CO’s caught up in the horror and you have to decide whether to help them, leave them or kill them. How you do affects the games ending and there are three possible outcomes. Not only that, but Torque actually changes appearance the more you do things, becoming cleaner and healthier if he does good stuff, and becoming bloodier and more monstrous is he does evil. Interestingly enough, doing bad things means that health packs will heal less energy and doing good things gives you more health, almost like the game is punishing you for doing evil and rewarding you for being good.

 

There are three bosses in the game (not including the final boss) and these characters are really interesting and one of the best elements in the game in my opinion. Reason being is that they represent the various aspects of Torque’s psyche in some way. They are Hermes, a gas like humanoid that is the spirit of a barbaric CO that enjoyed torturing his victims until he, himself, killed himself in the gas chamber – Horace, a regretful inmate that killed his girlfriend in a conjugal visit and was killed in the chair, hence why he is always followed by electricity and is in constant pain – and Dr Killjoy, who was a surgeon that performed barbaric experiments on his patients and only appears through the use of old fashioned cameras. He seems to want to help Torque, albeit somewhat questionably.

 

If you get a chance to play this game then I recommend it. It’s got a pretty good story, it has a lot of action going for it and the setting has a lot of interesting history. It’s worth a look.

 

 

 

3. Bioshock

 

Another of my favourite game series. The first Bioshock game, much like Silent Hill, has a depth to it that most other horror games lack. Aside from horror, this game also features elements such as objectivism, altruism and the illusion of freewill – the kinda stuff that George Orwell would love to write about. It also has one of the best twists in any video game mid way – and one of the best villains ever. Perhaps you remember me talking about Andrew Ryan in my Top Five Video Game Villains post.

 

In the first Bioshock, you find yourself trapped at sea after a plane crash. Discovering a nearby lighthouse, you take a Bathysphere down to the underwater city of Rapture – which was previously built by Ryan so that the very best of society would live without government oppression. However, now it has become a warzone, with the people of Rapture driven insane and turned into Splicers, thanks to the overuse of Plasmids called ADAM – which gives them superpowers, but has turned them into monsters. You have to fight your way through this fallen city, battling the Splicers and trying to find his way out.

 

Man did this game freak me out! The city is decaying and some of it even falls apart, the areas dark and the Splicers... dear god, the Splicers! They are just creepy to look at! They come at you when you least expect it, their insane ramblings will creep you out – and sometimes you can’t even see them until they are in your face, trying to tear it out! I think the freakiest of these Splicers is Sander Cohen – that guy is just messed up! All in all this makes it a very disturbing game to play as you’re never sure when the enemy is going to come out at you next.

 

Luckily, you also have access to plasmids, allowing you all manner of special abilities such as freezing, burning or blasting away your opponents. This adds a really interesting battle strategy to the game as you can mix and match your tactics depending on what you have nearby, meaning that the environment is your weapon. For example, you can set a Splicer on fire and watch him run into the water, then electrocute the water to kill them. Your battles are limited only to your imagination.

 

But in order to power up your ADAM, you will have to get more. Across Rapture, there are these little girls called Little Sisters, girls that have been implanted with ADAM and now are hunted by the Splicers. If you want to get more ADAM, you must find them. However, first you must take out their guardians, the Big Daddy. A huge, lumbering monster in a deep sea suit, these beasts will attack you if you think of hurting their Little Sister – and they take a LOT to take down. Interestingly, I must say I do like the relationship between the Big Daddy and the Little Sister – you genuinely feel a connection between the two characters and almost feel sad when a Sister cries over the dead body of one. After dealing with the Big Daddy, you can choose to either save the Little Sister or harvest them. Harvesting them will give you more ADAM, but will kill her. Personally, I NEVER do this, because the idea of killing a child (even in a game) just feels horrific to me.

 

Earlier this year, they released Bioshock Infinite, one of the best games I’ve ever played. It may not have had much of the horror elements, but it was still an amazingly good game with an incredible story to boot. But it was the first Bioshock game, with its deep social commentary, incredible characters and shocking twists that made this game an instant favourite. If you want to explore this series, I suggest this is where you start.

 

So would you kindly go and get yourself a copy of this game now. :)

 

 

 

4. The Walking Dead

 

Released as an episodic series of games on Steam, The Walking Dead is actually based on the comic book, rather than the TV series. Nevertheless, it’s an amazing game to play and one of the few games where your choices actually matter.

 

Done as a kind of Point and Click Adventure (which I loved back in the day), you play as Lee – a man who was convicted of killing a senator that slept with his wife. On his way to prison, the “Walker” apocalypse begins and Lee is caught in it. Fighting on his own, he later comes across a girl called Clementine – whose parents are in Savannah – and he takes her under his protection. They meet other characters along the way – some of which the readers of the comics will know of.

 

The game actually plays more like a movie than a video game. Every so often the game will force you to make a choice at a certain point – whether it’s answering a question, making a comment or doing an action. You only have a certain amount of time to make it though, or the game chooses for you. Be warned though, your choices have consequences – because what you say or do affects how the game plays out, how certain people will react to you, help you or leave to rot – and in some cases it determines who lives or dies! It’s one of these games that really makes you think about your choices and whether you can live with them or not. But this is the games main selling point, as it means that EVERY player gets a different game depending on what they want to do. There are tons of different ways the game can play out and this alone gives the game a lot of replay value.

 

Although a Survival Horror game, it is focused more on story and character development than scares. Even though there are some really intense scenes with the Walkers (and frightening), most of the drama comes from the characters that Lee and Clementine meet along the way. You will most likely find growing attached to some characters in the game, and becoming surprised at how quickly they can turn. But don’t get too attached – no one is safe in this game. And as I said, sometimes you have to make some REALLY tough choices.

 

For example, in the first chapter, the every end involves you having to save two people from some Walkers, whoever you don’t save will die. And, you guessed it, you only have time to save ONE person – so you have to decide who you want to rescue. Another chapter, one of the characters son’s is infected, but he won’t believe he could turn. You have to either talk him down to see sense, or fight him. THEN you have to decide whether he should put a bullet in his kid to stop him turning, or you do it yourself. Of course, you can always leave him as an option. And these are just SOME of the tough choices you have to make. I honestly do not think any game has disturbed me as much as this one with the hard decisions I’ve had to make.

 

All of this leads up to one of the most emotional finales I’ve ever seen in a game – in fact the whole GAME is a tearjerker in places. If you play this game, have a box of tissues ready as it will guarantee to make you cry at least once. The more you become attached to these characters, the more you don’t want them to die – and it so heart wrenching to see a character die. Never has a game had so much emotional power to it in my eyes. Even if you never read the comic, or watched the TV series, you should definitely check out this game. With excellent writing, multiple paths and complex and interesting characters, this will definitely keep you entertained, as well as scared.

 

 

 

5. Amnesia: The Dark Descent

 

I would have to say, hands down this is the most frightening game I have ever played! Amnesia: The Dark Descent is a game that has been lauded for its creepy and terrifying atmosphere, superb storytelling and immersive world. It has also set the standard for many other Survival Horror games, in particular the critically acclaimed Slenderman: The Eight Pages (which I have downloaded, but never played. Maybe one day).

 

In Amnesia, you play as Daniel (which makes him automatically cool in my eyes! XD), who wakes up in a strange castle of Brennenburg, with no memory. Finding notes apparently written by himself, he is told to find a guy called Alexander and kill him – but that he is being hunted by a “Shadow”. Daniel must now traverse the castle, with only a lantern to light the way, avoiding the horrors of Brennenburg castle.

 

As far as horror goes, this game is spot on. It doesn’t rely on jump scares, but creating an atmosphere. The corridors are dark and claustrophobic and often your lantern can’t light up too much. Eerie sounds echo throughout the creaking castle, adding a sense of dread all time. Notes left around add to the horror, especially when Daniel finds notes about his past and how he got here. All in all, it’s a pretty unsettling environment that only gets worse as the game goes on. You rarely have a moment to rest, paranoia setting in each second. Also, in this game you have a sanity meter, which can drain the more you see disturbing things – it can cause your vision to blur, your breathing to intensify (alerting you to the monsters in the castle) and you can even pass out if you go too insane.

 

But the most terrifying aspect of this game is how you deal with the monsters that you face. Silent Hill 2 may have had some disturbing creatures, but at least you can pull a gun out and kill them. The Suffering had you turn into a monster to deal with them, Bioshock lets you use plasmids – and even The Walking Dead has a few cases when you can use a weapon to deal with a Walker. In Amnesia you have NO way of defending yourself. There are no weapons in the game and the monsters can’t be killed or hurt – so you have to hide from them wherever you can. This alone makes it extremely terrifying as you have to rely on your wits to survive. But even if you hide in darkness it can drain your sanity, making an already difficult moment intense. And even when you THINK the monster is gone, you hear the music kick in – the screeching sound that notifies you that the monster is close. That’s when you know you have to get the **** out of there! Nothing has terrified me more than when I’m being chased by a monster!

 

This game I think H.P. Lovecraft would enjoy playing – in fact it was indeed inspired by one of his writings – The Outsider, which deals with the themes of loneliness, isolation and the fear of being alone. I haven’t even touched on the story of this game, but that’s because I want you to experience it yourself. The story is fantastic and, once you learn the truth of it, you’ll be horrified! I guarantee you no game will scare you psychotically than this one storywise.

 

Recently, they released a second game called Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs. Honestly though, that game was a bit of a disappointment. It took away a lot of aspects of what made the first game cool (such as the sanity meter) and, truthfully, the story was a little too convoluted and didn’t entirely work in my eyes. But if you want to experience true horror, then play this game. And if you don’t believe me how frightening it could be – watch some let’s plays on Youtube and see people’s reactions to it!

 

 

That’s my top five. Please feel free to leave a comment below if I missed out any of your favs. Hope you all had a Happy Halloween! Take care and stay safe!

 

 

--------------------------

PANDRAGON

 

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Top Five So Bad They're Good Film Lines

Film quotes are just awesome aren’t they? Even if we have never seen a film, sometimes a line from it are so iconic that we just automatically associate it with a film. Whether it’s the iconic “You talking to me?” quote from Taxi Driver, the haunting “I’m gonna make him an offer her can’t refuse” from The Godfather, or just the over the top but amazing awesome “THIS IS SPARTA!” from 300, the right quote from a film can lead a lasting impression on you for ages to come.

 

But sometimes, film quotes make a film famous for an entirely different reason. Whether it’s because it’s such a stupid line, said in a stupid way – or just completely over the top and nonsensical, occasional a film quote can make a film infamous as opposed to famous.

 

On today’s Top Five, I look at the Top Five “So Bad They Are Good Lines In Films. These are all lines that are so ridiculous and, in some cases, utter rubbish, but are still entertaining, if for all the wrong reasons! Most, if not all the ones mentioned below have started off an internet meme in some way or another – and today I honour them!

 

So, as before, this Top Five is in no particular order and based only on film lines I find really funny and crazy. I’ll also include links to Youtube videos where possible. But first, an honourable mention.

 

 

“If this is Justice, then I’m a banana!” from Angel Cop

 

Yes... you read that right. This is an actual line in this OVA. Angel Cop has got to be, one of the absolute worse Anime OVA’s I’ve ever seen in my life! The animation is sub par at best, the storyline is just a mess of ideas thrown together, and the voice acting – dear god! I’ve seen five year olds that are unable to read do better acting then these guys. Not only that, but the original Japanese version of this is very anti-Semitic as the Jews are the main villains in the story. This of course was changed in the English dub and subtitles, but even so, that’s pretty harsh!

 

Anyway, as I said, this film is bad in a number of ways – but it’s the scene in question that really makes it stand out as a terrible example of Anime in the 80’s and 90’s. In the final “climatic” battle, the heroine, Angel is forced to shoot her partner to help defeat the main villain, by destroying the cybernetic suit he wears (just go with it). Angel aims her gun and then relents her bad luck by saying “If this is justice, then I’m a banana!”

 

o_O

 

This is one of those moments where you just stop, think, “Did she just say what I thought she said?” and then burst out laughing. It is hands down one of the most hilarious moments in Anime history. Ok, I know sometimes that things get mistranslated and lost when foreign films are sent over to be dubbed into English (Japanese translation is notorious for this), but I am sure that this was NOT what was supposed to be said. But even so, it makes the scene so damn funny! This should be an internet meme if it’s not already! If anyone reading this wants to start it, go right ahead! Please it would make my day!

 

Now, unfortunately I can’t find a sample of this without showing you most of the movie, and I really don’t want to subject you guys to this as it is really bad! But if you can come across this scene on the internet somewhere then it will be worth it for a chuckle! XD

 

Right, now onto the main show! The first one in our list is...

 

 

1. “Oh my GOOOODDDDDDDDD!” from Troll 2

 

The unofficial sequel to the first Troll movie (which is somewhat infamous as it contains a character in it called Harry Potter, who uses magic. And this came out BEFORE the Harry Potter stories. Have to question where JK Rowling got her inspiration from!) and widely considered one of the “best” worse movies of all time (in fact it was even the subject of a documentary film), Troll 2 follows the Waits family as they visit the town of Nilbog, only to be assaulted by a group of angry goblins.

 

This film was dogged with problems from the word go. The director, Claudio Fraggaso and his crew were all Italian and spoke no English whatsoever, meaning that all lines in the script had to be read verbatim. This, coupled with the cast having little to no experience in acting, lead to the film being a real mess of a picture and to be panned critically – although it has a huge cult following.

 

Perhaps one of the most famous – or infamous – moments of the film is this scene here, where a teenager witnesses his girlfriend turned into a plant and then savaged by a group of goblins. In a “Captain Obvious” moment, he exclaims “They’re eating her. And then they’re going to eat me. Oh my GOOOOOOOODDDDDDDDD!”

 

 

You gotta love how the guy looks more confused that frightened, but this poor reading, coupled with the somewhat creepy music, does actually make for a hilarious scene and one that has been parodied many times. Personally, I think EVERY horror movie today should have a scene like this! It may even make a few of them watchable! There are, of course, many more classic moments in Troll 2, but this one stands out due to the sheer lack of any emotion whatsoever, even though the music tries desperately to convey some horror. Can’t blame them for trying.

 

 

2. “You are tearing me apart, Lisa!” from The Room

 

Oh boy... this film is just... wow! The Room is considered by many to be the “Citizen Kane of bad movies.” Nothing about this film works! It’s plot has so many holes and points that are raised and abandoned at once (such a scene where the mother of one of the characters mentions she has cancer – and then it’s NEVER mentioned or alluded to again), terrible pacing and acting and even some scenes that make no sense whatsoever – such as a scene where all the male characters get dressed up in tuxedos and go and play football. Why do they do it? Er... because the plot says so?

 

This is the film that made Tommy Wiseau a star in his own right. Originally intended to be a novel and then a play, The Room was later turned into a film and finaned by Wiseau himself - is that alarm bells ringing I hear? With such a low budget and a cast that wouldn’t know the term “acting” if it kicked them in the nether regions, it’s Tommy Wiseau’s performance that stands out as one of the craziest. Not only does he just look like a bizarre cross between Frankenstein and Mick Jagger from the Rolling Stones, his voice just sounds like a mash of different accents. Also, his acting is just something that HAS to be seen to be believed. And how many times can one man say “Oh hi” in one movie. For me personally, my favourite scenes is when he tries to taunt people by going “cheap, cheap, cheap” and the scene in the flower shop.

 

But the absolute GOLDEN moment for this movie, and the one which will stay with you forever, is the classic scene when Johnny (Tommy’s character) confronts Lisa, his girlfriend about her spreading lies about him. He expresses his anguish by crying out “You are tearing me apart, Lisa!” I warn you, what you are about to see is possibly one of the most epic moments in film history.

 

 

Dear god! This scene is just AWESOME! I’ve never seen anyone look so nonchalant and yet try to be so overdramatic at once. And the way he brings his arms down to accentuate the point just makes it all the more funnier. The sad thing is, this is the closest that ANYONE gets to acting in the whole film. This scene is so famous that even The Simpsons parodied it in the episode where Lisa goes out with a vampire.

 

Due to strong word of mouth, The Room has become a cult classic amongst film watchers – and there was even a time where The Room did a mini tour in the smaller cinemas in the states. If you get a chance to see this film then I highly recommend it. You’ll be laughing your ass off most of the time, but you won’t regret it!

 

 

3. “Oh man! Oh God, oh man!” from Tough Guys Don’t Dance

 

Containing a scene that is considered to be the “Worse line reading ever” on Youtube (which is the subject of this part of the blog), Tough Guys Don’t Dance is a somewhat obscure crime thriller film that no one really talks about anymore. With good reason. It sucks! And yes, I have actually seen it for nothing more than morbid curiosity.

 

Anyway, in this scene, actor Ryan O’Neil (who was actually a pretty decent actor for his time) is reading a letter from his ex-girlfriend, explaining that her husband is having an affair with his wife. His reaction? Well, see for yourself!

 

 

You gotta love how the camera spins round at the end, trying to be overly dramatic but just coming across as utterly dizzying. Even the overly dramatic music can't take away from the terrible acting. It may be one of the worse line readings ever, but it is just so damn funny! Again, this is something that has become a bit of an internet meme and parodied a few times. Heck, I even once considered parodying it in one of my novels, but decided against it.

 

According to what I read on Wikipedia, the scene was never really intended to be show due to the poor acting of O’Neil, but Norman Mailer, the Director, kept it in because he thought that it was quite funny. This, however, jeopardised his friendship with O’Neil as the actor thought it could cripple his career, considering he had been nominated for an Academy Award a few years prior.

 

Like most bad movies it has its own cult following and this scene certainly has rejuvenated its popularity. But for me, this film is just garbage.

 

Speaking of which, can anyone tell me what day it is today?

 

 

4. “Garbage Day!” from Silent Night, Deadly Night 2

 

Ah yes, THIS scene! I honestly think that this must be the most parodied scene of all time. You just need to do a Youtube search to find a TON of videos that parody this moment.

 

Silent Night, Deadly Night 2 is (obviously) the sequel to Silent Night, Deadly Night, which is considered one of the original slasher horror movies and a cult classic. The sequel, however – not so. Mainly because half of the movie just shows scenes from the first film as “flashbacks”. So in actual fact, Silent Night, Deadly Night 2 is only HALF a movie. This was due to the fact that there were only given a very small budget for this film, even being told to re-edit the first film and pass it off as a sequel! That’s lazy! But the director wanted to make a new film, though he only had a very small budget and could only shoot a few scenes.

 

Anyway, in one of the most notorious moments in the film, Ricky (the brother of the killer in the first film), goes on a rampage down a small town, stopping by a hapless citizen that just happen to be putting out his trash. Ricky screams “Garbage Day!” before gunning him down.

 

 

This moment is just... weird. I mean, it just looks so ridiculous and the way that Ricky says “Garbage Day!” just comes across as bizarre. But funny as hell! You also gotta love how the man holds up his garbage can like it will protect him from a bullet. The ending, where Ricky blows on the end of his gun and laughs wickedly is just cheesy.

 

But overall, it’s a stand out scene in a cruddy film and, like I said, one that has been parodied many times before. Some examples include Opposite Day, Judgement Day, St Patrick’s Day to name a few. Even the internet reviewer the Cinema Snob, did his own version of Christmas Day, when he realised that no one had ever done that before.

 

Just goes to show that even the shortest scene of the most obscure movie can have a massive cultural impact!

 

 

5. “I’ve had it with these mother****ing snakes on this mother****ing plane!” from – oh you should know the film!

 

Yeah, you all knew THIS was coming! Let’s be honest, with a film like Snakes on a Plane, you know what type of film you’re getting. It’s not exactly going to be an Oscar worthy drama, but a cheesy B-movie that’s just fun to watch without needing to give too much attention to. Snakes on a Plane is also famous for being one of the few films to get media attention BEFORE it came out. God bless viral marketing!

 

Honestly, I’m not really a big fan of this film. I think that, surprisingly, it takes itself too seriously on occasion. But it is a film that certainly delivers what it says on the tin. But I do love Samuel L. Jackson’s performance! He is just the ultimate actor for film quotes. From his AK47 line in Jackie Brown to his many quotable lines in Pulp Fiction, to name a few, you know exactly what you’re gonna get from this guy.

 

But of course, the line he’s most famous for, is this line – said at the end of the movie where he just lets everyone know his frustration at the situation they are in.

 

“Enough is ENOUGH! I’ve had it with these mother****ing snakes on this mother****ing plane!”

 

This is a testament to Samuel L. Jackson’s uber-cool acting ability. Who else do you know that could take a line that stupid, badly written and awful – and STILL make it sound badass? Can you imagine Sly Stallone or Arnie trying to say that line? Or even worse... Jean Claude Van Damme? Seriously, no one can touch this line but Sam Jackson – the king of one liners and film quotes!

 

But, as silly as that line sounds, it’s the TV edit that makes this line even MORE hi-larious (and yet, I did intentionally spell it that way XD) and that's the video I want to show you guys!

 

 

Monkey fighting snakes on a Monday-Friday plane? Genius!

 

So there are the Top Five So Bad They Are Good Film Lines. What are the film quotes that made you crease yourself laughing at how bad they were? Please leave a comment below to let me know what you thought!

 

All videos were uploaded by various Youtube users, but are copyright of their repsective owners.

 

I claim no ownership on any of the above.

 

 

 

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PANDRAGON

 

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Top Five Most Shocking Deaths in Fiction

WARNING: The following blog contains a LOT of spoilers from various movies, TV shows, books, video games and comics. Read at your own risk!

 

So, I’m sure some of you are still reeling from the shock ending in the recent Game of Thrones episode, The Rain of Castamere. It was an episode with a shock ending the likes of which very few have seen – resulting in the death of a few main characters. This is an episode that has caused a lot of kerfuffle on social media, with a lot of fans voicing their upset for the death of such popular characters. Myself, I kind already knew what was gonna happen as I had already read the books – but I was amazed at how well (and how heartbreaking) the scene was. It left me cold afterwards and actually brought several tears to my eyes, much like the scene in the book.

 

But despite all the controversy surrounding it, one mustn’t forget that Game of Thrones isn’t the ONLY show that has killed off main characters in the past. In fact, the idea of killing off main characters as part of the plot has been a staple in quite a lot of other media. So, after seeing that episode, it inspired me to write this blog – where I look at the Top Five most shocking deaths in fiction. These are deaths that have caused upset, uproar, or just came out of nowhere. These are the deaths of some of the most popular characters in fiction, ones that have haunted our emotions for several years and made us cry "OMG!"

 

 

If you haven’t read the spoiler warning at the beginning of the blog, now’s your time to back away if you don’t want to see the results. Keep in mind, this is just based on stuff that I’ve seen, or know about. It’s also listed in no particular order, like all my Top Five posts. Let’s begin. Grab your hankies as we weep for these amazing characters, whose death changed our lives. Or rather mine! They are listed in no particular order.

 

 

 

1. Omar Little – The Wire

 

Of all the characters in The Wire that they could have killed off, WHY did they have to kill this guy? He was one of the coolest characters in the whole show! His death was one of the few times I’ve have to pause the TV and take a few moments to scream “No, that did NOT just happen!” Simply because his death comes out of nowhere and doesn’t happen how you expect it to.

 

For me, Omar was one of the most interesting characters in The Wire. He was a kind of “Robin Hood” drug dealer that stole from others so that he could sell on himself. This earned him the fear (and hatred) of other dealers in the area. Omar was a shrewd and cunning man who would set traps for his victims, rather than going in guns blazing. In fact, Omar usually tried to avoid violence unless it was a last resort – but he wasn’t afraid to go out firing if he was backed into a corner or his friends (or lovers) were threatened. Occasionally, he would just walk down the street, whistling Bringing in the Sheep, which served as a warning to nearby dealers that “Omar comin’!”

 

But Omar, unlike a lot of drug dealers in the show, was more than just a cold blooded killer. He had a code of ethics that meant that no innocents would be harmed. He always looked out for his own team and even blamed himself when a crew member got killed. He was also an openly gay dealer, something which a lot of the gangs in Baltimore took umbrage to. In fact, one time they even had a boyfriend of his killed to send a message. A couple of times, Omar went into hiding, but after Marlon (a rising drug lord that Omar had p***ed off) killed one of his friends, Omar returned, systematically hunting down Omar’s crew and calling him out.

 

In the end, Omar met his end not at the hands of Marlon or his crew – but a little kid. A kid that shot him in the back of the head whilst purchasing cigarettes at a store. This is completely against how you expect Omar to go out – considering he’s been in many death defying situations and always come out (relatively) unscathed. He even escaped a gun fight by throwing himself out a window and breaking his leg – and THIS is how he goes out?

 

I won’t lie I was kinda p***ed off at how he went out like this, but then The Wire isn’t about Hollywood style shoot outs. It’s about a city ravaged by drugs and poverty and a place where violence can happen at the drop of a hat. And Omar’s death shows that, despite all the urban myths and celebrity status he had amongst the dealers, he was still mortal. But I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who was shocked at the way he went out the series.

 

 

 

2. Optimus Prime - Transformers

 

No, I’m not talking about the crappy Michael Bay Transformers movies (you suck, Bay!), I’m talking about the TRUE Optimus Prime of the 80’s cartoon series. In particular, the infamous death of Optimus Prime in The Transformers: The Movie – a death that traumatised many childhoods.

 

The Tranformers movie (released in 1986) was actually not a big success at the time and had very little commercial help – but has since gained a cult following. Nevertheless, Transformers was a very popular cartoon (and toy series) at the time and so it did garner a lot of attention from the fans. It’s worth mentioning that this film was the last film Orson Wells (who voiced Unicron) did before he died. Apparently he was so ill when they filmed it that they had process his voice, which I actually think helped as his voice was just creepy as hell to listen to. Other big name stars include Leonard Nimoy and (of all people) Eric Idle. But I’m getting off track.

 

At the time that they were doing this film, Hasbro was bringing out a new toy series and so they asked that some older characters be killed off to make way for the newer ones. This means that The Transformers movie has a much darker tone than the previous series and a lot of Autobots (and some Decepticons) are killed off – one of which was Optimus Prime, who passes on The Matrix of power to Ultra Magnus as the new leader of the Autobots.

 

But Hasbro didn’t realise how much this would upset their fans. There was a lot of backlash over Optimus Prime’s death, with many fans sending in letters of how upset they were. This backlash was so great that they even changed the fate of the character Duke in G.I.Joe: The Movie, who was also supposed to die, but just went into a coma and revived off screen. Even Peter Cullen, the voice actor, was amazed at how popular a character he was.

 

So how could one character be so beloved? Well, for me, Optimus Prime was a true symbol of heroism. He was a moral, ethical and beloved leader that would always put himself in danger to protect his soldiers and the humans. He never gave up in the face of danger and would ALWAYS lay his life down to protect the humans. He also had one of the coolest voices of any fictional characters at the time. And if that wasn’t cool enough, he could turn into a truck! Let’s face it, what kid WOULDN’T love the idea of a truck that could change into a giant robot?

 

Optimus Prime’s death is so infamous that in 2010, when the Nostalgia Critic did his Top 11 Saddest Nostalgic Moments, he received a lot of complaints from fans for not including this death scene. He would later go on to explain his reasons in the Top 11 F*** Ups video, but even he had to admit he made a mistake not including this scene. Michael Bay even tried to pay “tribute” to this scene by killing off Optimus Prime in Revenge of the Fallen – but he failed to even come CLOSE to the emotional feeling that the original scene had in my opinion. As I said, you suck Michael Bay!

 

 

 

3. Gwen Stacy – Spider-Man Comics

 

I already covered this in a previous blog, but because I’m sure you guys don’t have time to sift through pages and pages of my previous posts, I’ll quickly go over it again.

 

Gwen Stacy was the original girlfriend of Peter Parker, aka Spider-Man. She was a feisty, hot headed and very strong female character that was popular amongst many fans. So one has to wonder why Marvel would kill off a popular character, but they did. In a scene that has become infamous in Marvel history, the Green Goblin captured Gwen Stacy (having discovered Spider-Man’s true identity) and took her to a bridge. During the fight, Gwen was knocked off the top and Spider-Man threw a web to catch her and pull her up – only to find her dead.

 

To me, this is great storytelling – albeit a little depressing. After all, back then the hero always saved the girl and had a happy ending. So for a hero to FAIL to save a heroine it was a big thing at the time. Not only that, but the sound effect by Gwen Stacy’s neck when his web stops her suggests that it was SPIDER-MAN that killed her, as the sudden stop created a whiplash effect to break her neck. Can you imagine the level of guilt that would bring onto someone knowing that they were responsible (however unintentional) in killing the love of their life? Well it certainly had a profound effect on Spider-Man and he’s never forgotten about it. So much so that, when the Green Goblin tried a similar thing to Mary-Jane, Spider-Man was able to save her by shooting loads of webs at once, meaning that her entire body was supported and gradually slowed down, so that there would be no breakages.

 

But this event didn’t stop Marvel fans from turning on the comic company. Stan Lee, in particular, got a lot of hate mail from the fans, so much so that he practically BEGGED the writers to bring her back. In the end, she came back as a clone, leading to the Clone Wars saga (not the Star Wars film that is), a series which is considered by many fans as the best and the worse of Spider-Man storylines.

 

Gwen has never really returned in person to the comics, but she has made a lot of appearances in recent Spider-Man media, in particular the new Spider-Man films. Whether or not she will receive the same fate as her comic counterpart remains to be seen.

 

 

 

4. Aerith Gainsborough – Final Fantasy VII

 

If you’re a fan of Final Fantasy (or RPG’s in general), chances are you’ve played Final Fantasy VII. Arguably the most popular of the Final Fantasy series (although many I have spoken to consider Final Fantasy VI the best of the series – take from that what you will), this game was definitely one of the flagship titles of the PlayStation and practically anyone who had a PlayStation owned this game.

 

Now personally, I don’t really play a lot of RPG’s, but Final Fantasy VII was a game that I play religiously. For me, it had an epic story, great characters, a fun variety of special moves and magic that you could command and a lot of sub-games that you could play to gain many special bonuses. But for me, once you got the Knights of the Round material, there is no excuse NOT to complete the game.

 

Aerith plays an important part in the game. When Cloud (the protagonist) first meets her, she’s just a flower girl in trouble with Shinra, the evil corporation that AVALANCE are fighting. However, as the story goes on, Aerith proves to be descendant of a power race called The Ancients, and the key to stopping Sepiroth’s evil plan. Throughout the game, Aerith and Cloud have a kind of “will they-won’t they” relationship, fighting alongside Tifa for Cloud’s affection. Aerith is also a very powerful member of the team as she has many abilities to heal and cure her allies, making her a great support caster. She’s also such a kind and compassionate girl that she even brings out a softer side to Cloud. Many were hoping that the two would end up falling in love.

 

Sadly, it wasn’t to be. In what is considered to be one of the most shocking moments in video game history, Aerith later goes after Sepiroth on her own. AVALANCE meet her praying at a temple for the planets aid. Sepiroth glides down from the air, slaying her with his sword. The music that plays next is one of the saddest and moving pieces of music ever heard in a video game in my opinion. I remember when this scene happened, I actually dropped my joypad in shock. I had become so invested in these characters that seeing one of them dead, without anything I could do to stop it. It also made me hate Sepiroth as a character and I REALLY wanted to kill him after that.

 

Seems like I wasn’t the only one that was affected by this. Loads of other players were so traumatised by this that a rumour started that there was actually a way to bring her back to life in the game. Many tried it in the hope that they could bring her back. Sadly, it turned out to just be a wish-fulfilment fantasy. Aerith’s death is plot driven, and is a catalyst for Cloud, before he was just a selfish mercenary – but her death makes him realise how far Sepiroth will go to hurt him and he becomes the hero of the story. I will say this though, the final battle with Sepiroth is one of the most satisfying final battles ever. It feels like a real Anime, where the hero finally owns the bad guy and gives them the punishment they deserve.

 

Aerith’s death was a major factor for me wanting to go into writing Fantasy in the first place – in fact, her death inspired a certain scene in one of my books. Those who have read my work will probably know what I’m talking about. Aerith would go on to appear in other Final Fantasy VII works, but her death is still considered by many as one of the most memorable moments in video game history.

 

 

 

5. Adriana La Cerva – The Sopranos

 

Poor Adriana. In a show like The Sopranos, you expect death every episode – and they weren’t shy about killing off main characters either. But Adriana’s death is the one death I wish never happened – and it still leaves me cold just thinking about it.

 

Adriana never had an easy life in The Sopranos. Partner to Christopher Moltisanti, Adriana had a lot of advantages that a lot of other girls never had – such as the finest things in life. Problem was that Christopher was often abusive to her (and often beat her). She suffered many humiliations at the hands of Christopher, but she still loved him – probably out of fear. I actually felt really sorry for Adriana, she was probably one of the more likable characters in the series. Sure, she was no angel, but compared to a lot of characters in The Sopranos, she was a saint!

 

Late into the run of the show, Adriana is captured by the F.B.I. and “recruited” as a mole so that they can keep an eye on the Soprano family. Knowing that being a mole for the F.B.I. is a risky business, as a lot of moles end up being killed, we know straight away that this will end badly for Adriana. Hoping that she can someway use this to try and give her and Christopher a happy life and spare him from any criminal charges, Adriana has no choice but to agree. But the guilt of betraying her friends and family gets to her, and she eventually admits to Christopher what happened.

 

At first, Christopher is enraged and tries to kill her. But then he calms down and the two make a plan to escape, so that neither the F.B.I. or the mafia can get them. As Adriana packs her bags, she gets a call from Tony, saying that Christopher is in the hospital, having tried to kill himself. She is picked up by Silvio Dante and driven to the hospital to see Chris. Or so we think. Silvio and kind and calm with Adriana, assuring her that Christopher will be ok. But when Adriana looks out the window, seeing a forest, she breaks down crying, knowing what her fate is to be – and where Christopher’s loyalties TRUELY lie. In one of the hardest scenes to watch, Silvio turns off the road into the forest, Adriana begs for her life and tries to escape. The camera pans away as Silvio draws his gun and a shot is heard.

 

At this point, many fans didn’t WANT to believe that Adriana was dead, given that she was a popular character in the show and one of the few that had any redeeming features. Many argued that she wasn’t really dead as you didn’t actually see her getting shot, like you did with other characters in the show. Adding to that was that the actress, Drea de Matteo, was scheduled to appear in the final season, this seemed to prove the fans theory that she was alive. Sadly, it was only in flashbacks or dreams that Adriana appeared – proving that she was, indeed, dead. Just goes to show that just because you want something to be true, doesn’t make it so.

 

When me and my brother started watching repeats of The Sopranos, I’d hoped that watching this scene would be a little less painful – but it was even MORE so for some reason. I honestly felt that she didn’t deserve this. She wasn’t a totally bad person in my view, she just had a crappy hand dealt. But I have to say, as much as I hoped that Adriana was alive, I always had to call BS when fans said she wasn’t really dead. For one thing, why would Silvio NOT kill her? He was loyal to the family and would always do what was necessary to protect them, even murder. It would also been a cop out if she had survived in my view as The Sopranos was not that type of show that had happy endings.

 

I would have thought that a show that pretty much told you to expect death virtually every episode wouldn’t be too surprising for people. But that just goes to show that, if the audience love a character enough, even a show full of violence can surprise you.

 

 

That’s my list, what deaths have shocked YOU the most in fiction? Please leave a comment below to let me know.

 

Thanks for reading. Have a great weekend!

 

All above images are copyright of their respective holders.

 

 

 

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PANDRAGON

 

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