Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Nuclear Option

The Nuclear Age began during Harry S Truman's administration with the Trinity Test in New Mexico and the dropping of the bomb in both Hiroshima and Nagasaki end World War II. It also played a key role in Jack Ryan's life, but we'll get to that in a moment.

After the war, the Soviets developed a bomb of their own. Both sides did numerous nuclear tests. They even went so far as to build fake suburban neighborhoods to see what effects a nuclear blast would have on the Levittowns and whatever the Soviet version of Levittown was.

*sigh* In some weird way, we're willing to accept the part about him surviving the blast by hiding in the lead-lined fridge. But the fridge being the only piece of debris to be thrown to safety? No! Oh Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skulls, only you could make Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom look okay in comparison.

Even more idiotic than that scene are the notations that were added to the video after it was uploaded. If you're ever feeling that humanity isn't pathetic, go to YouTube and watch a quote bubble appear over Indy's face that says, "I Am Gay" in the "Indiana Jones IV, Bomb scene LOL" video.

Seriously, humanity. Knock that shit off.

Thankfully, the bomb hasn't actually been used in an attack since World War II. But that still doesn't keep filmmakers from having us bomb ourselves to smithereens.

As visual special effects improved, so did nuclear war movie magic. The nuclear attack scene in the 1983 made-for-television movie The Day After is pretty amusing. It borrows heavily from declassified film of nuclear tests, but also uses the latest in effects, which are kind of laughable now.
You just become an X-ray, so there's no reason
to panic or not carry on with your wedding as if nothing is happening.
Filmmakers didn't really unlock the secret of a good movie nuclear explosion until 1991 with Terminator 2: Judgement Day.
According to Sarah Connor, "anybody not wearing 2 million sunblock
[on August 29, 1997] is going to have a real bad day."
And that brings us to Jack Ryan.

This week, he's fighting the man who ushered in the Atomic Age.

As someone who has personally survived a nuclear attack (in The Sum of All Fears) via magical helicopter, will he have a bone to pick with Truman? Or will Ryan just be good-natured about it and serenade him with The Gap Band?

I'd say either way, we win.

If you haven't already, go to this week's Harry S Truman vs. Jack Ryan fight. Hit the red button (okay, it's not really red) to place your vote and drop a bomb on the comments section. Wait, what we mean by that is leave one respectful comment in our comment section. Please don't actually comment bomb us.

Oh, and not that you haven't already been bombarded with this plea from other people, but please contact your respective representatives and senators and tell them how ridiculous this SOPA/PIPA nonsense really is. Ideally, they'll listen to you and not the multibillion-dollar organizations that line their pockets.


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