Friday, November 09, 2007

In Case That Last Link Wasn't Random Enough

The 10 Best Animated Movies for (Traumatizing) Kids: What childhood is complete without a healthy dose of trauma?

20,000 pounds of sodium being dumped into a lake: It makes a very satisfying boom.

Outtake from the Doctor Who episode "Human Nature": If you've seen the episode, you'll remember that the Doctor leaves a video with a list of instructions for Martha. We only get to see the beginning and the end of it on the show, because Martha fast-forwards through the middle. But David Tennant had to keep talking so that she'd have something to fast-forward through. The resulting video clip proves that David Tennant is a) adorably amusing when he's babbling and b) really quite a heck of an actor.

The Writers Strike: Why We Fight: A video presentation explaining the reasons behind the current Hollywood writers' strike. I'm not exactly happy about the strike -- my shows! my precious shows! -- but the stuff they're asking for sounds extremely reasonable to me, and I happen to be a big fan of the people who actually put in the creative talent being the ones to get the money, so I wish them much luck. And not just because I'm going to be annoyed if I only get half a season of Lost next year.

Genesis, the computer program: Amusing, and as believable as any other creation story.

The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe: I think I may have linked to this at some point in the past, but they're currently pushing to hit 30,000 weekly listeners by the end of the year, so I figured I'd give 'em a plug. This is a podcast which examines a wide array of topics from a standpoint of scientific skepticism, featuring some very entertaining and intelligent people. I listen to it regularly.


  1. Of those ten movies, I've only seen two. Watership Down did traumatize me, and I've never wanted to see it again (nor read the book). Of course, I was at an age to appreciate Jessica Rabbit, so I might have to recuse myself on commenting. (Maybe I just have a thing about rabbits.)

    I liked the newsreel. (I wondered how one would get the sodium to the lake and avoid the blast radius.) I could do without the preachy informercial tagged on the end, though.

  2. Watership Down was a really, really good book. Better than the movie, I thought, but the movie was pretty good, too. But then, I read it as an adult, and watched the movie after reading the book. Anyway, it's sort of supposed to be traumatic, I think. Or at least disturbing; it's about disturbing subjects.

    On your possible thing for rabbits, I will not comment. :)

    I don't even remember the preachy infomercial from when I watched the sodium thing a week or so ago, to be honest. Either I blanked it out of my memory, or I stopped watching the video when it came on.

  3. Agreed, both the book and movie were very good, but the book was better.

    It's very tough to say what will and won't traumatize a child; what we find scary as adults and think we think we absolutely must keep away from children often isn't what frightens them. I know when Neil Gaiman wrote Coraline, for instance, adults kept telling him that it was too scary for kids, while kids just said what they liked about the book.

    I don't think I was personally traumatized by any movies growing up. I remember being scared by Ghostbusters, of all things, which I've happily watched a number of times since then.

    And the writers strike...yeah, their demands seem extremely reasonable to me. Basically, they get nothing and would like a little something. I'm not so worried about how it impacts the shows on right now -- maybe because I don't care enough about any of them -- but I really do hope it's resolved soon.

  4. Very true about the kid-trauma stuff. I remember, what traumatized me as a kid wasn't any of the movies my parents didn't want me to watch, but some stupid documentary about Nostradamus, which I still vividly remember being freaked the hell out by.

    (And I loved Coraline, for the record. It was creepy, but it was beautifully creepy. So maybe I'm just a kid at heart. :))

  5. Another kid's movie I didn't like was Rikki Tikki Tavi. There's a scene where a cobra threatens to bite a boy if anyone moves -- and also if they don't move. Hmm. Maybe it wasn't fear so much as a resounding problem with the logic (even at a young age).

  6. Oh, that was something of a favorite of mine when I was a kid, as I recall. And I'm not sure there was anything wrong with the snake's logic. He was just determined to do some bitin'. :)

  7. The only thing I remember really being scared by as a child was the TV serial "Quatermass and the Pit":

  8. Oh man me too on the Nostradamus I think like the baby sitter let us watch that. And what freaked me out was the part where we would all become bloodthirsty savages in the future. I was fairly young I think. I still remember how freaked out I was now!. Also Rikki Tikki Tavi scares me too Captain C. Those snakes are creepy!

  9. Oh, god, I'm glad it wasn't just me! Because it seems silly looking back on it. I think that thing was probably terribly cheesy, really, and come on... Nostradamus? The guy was a total nut. But I can still hear the narration in my head, telling me "Man will become.. a mean-eater!" (That was Orson Welles, apparently. I'm starting to think there's just something about that man's voice that has the power to cause instant hysteria.)

    And I guess the snakes in Rikki Tikki were really scary, but I always found them the pleasant kind of scary, I think. Perhaps because I had total faith in the mongoose.

  10. Oh, and John: Aren't British kids pretty much expected to grow up terrified by science fiction TV shows? Except I thought it was supposed to be hiding behind the sofa from the Daleks. :)

  11. I wouldnt even let me watch Nostradamas.

    I never watched Watership Down until I was an Adult. I must have had a little mind then because it scared me.


  12. I'm thinking I should send you a copy of Snakes on a Plane for Christmas, dad. ;)

  13. Please don`t. Pretty Please.

  14. I was 15 when Doctor Who started, so I was a little too old to be truly terrified by it.

    The current Word Verification offering is particularly hard to make out, so I'll be pleasantly surprised if I get to post this at the first attempt. ETA: I was right. I'm now on my second attempt.

  15. I don't even watch any of the new Nostradamus shows because, let's face it, they repeat what we already heard, and, well, it's Orson Welles, isn't it?

    And, tying that together with scaring the bejabbers out of kids, my mom had nightmares after seeing Citizen Kane when it came out. She still gets nervous if anyone says "Rosebud" to her.

  16. I watched Watership Down as a child and loved it. Made me want to wade through the book as soon as I could read and my Mum made me read Alice in Wonderland thru first before I did and I was itching to read it. Even as a really young kid...I liked it. Read it over a gain as I got older and more and more of the story came's a favorite of mine.
    The Fog however? Not something for a 4 year old...