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Comic for: December 1st, 2005
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Gaming News: "Two Thumbs"
Posted: Thursday December 1st, 2005 by

Recently, movie critic Roger Ebert, despite admitting to being unfamiliar with video games, decried them as being sub-par when compared to the great masterworks of film and literature.
Source: ShackNews - [ more info ]

Obviously Ted would take exception to this kind of game criticism. But, I'll grant Ebert the fact that, as of yet, the world has not really taken notice of the "artists" in the gaming field. Hell, even in our own community we would be hard pressed to pluck names out of the gaming ether to heap "artistic" recognition upon.

The question though is: does film really deserve a place beside the great masters of literature?

In my mind, every subsection of entertaiment has it's masterpieces. Their individual merit is defined by the manner in which they are produced and the obstacles that form of media must overcome. Those individual merits must then be measured against other pieces within that specific genre. It's a tad unfair to guage their value versus offerings from different branches of entertainment.

Conversely, every genre also has its stinkers. When Mr. Ebert says that film and literature are intrinsically better uses of our time, is he forgetting romance novels, and b-movies? I know I damn sure appreciate the mastery of "Shadow of the Colossus" over the inept stumblings of . And to be honest, I'd rather read "Animal Farm" than to play a video game or watch any movie.

Ultimately, critics ignorant of other genres have no place commenting on the merits of works outside their particular realm of experience. Just because a person operates within an entertainment subset does not mean that THEIR subset is deserving of accolades while the value of other subsets are diminished. If this were the case then all masterworks of music composition would be secondary to the masterworks of literature or, vice versa. And, that's a tad immature in its scope is it not?

In the end Mr.Ebert is fully entitled to his opinion, no matter how ignorant. But, he should remember that he's not out there on his own with no one listening. He has a certain amount of responsibility that extends beyond the boundaries of reviewing movies. I call it the debt of celebrity. He owes it to his readers to be knowledgable on the subjects he decides to comment on.

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Today's Pimpage: Woody is wearing a "Rocketbird" t-shirt from Threadless.Com.

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