Saturday, 23 November 2013

West Coast Geeks Vs Nerds - "Isla Nublar" (Jurassic Park) vs "The Island" (Lost)

Personal Note: HOLY CRAP, it's been a while since my last post. Insert the excuse of my choice here, ranging from a busy work schedule, to a failed NaNoWriMo attempt, to a severe breakdown in the Blogger interface that prevented me from posting this when I was supposed to. The fine people at WCGVN actually gave me a free pass to attend this show, in exchange for a review. And over a month later, here it is! ...yeah, they're not going to give me another one.

I'm trying to practice my writing so I can develop professional skill in the event I ever get to write for somebody else. I had aimed to have a post up once a week, but even that seems too daunting for my ever-dimming mind. Maybe I'll try for one a month? I'm reasonably sure nobody's reading these, but I have no idea how to check the view counts to be sure.

Well, I'll at least fulfill the request I was given, even if it is insanely late and lacking photographic reference because the phone I used to take the pictures was bricked shortly after I took them. I really do enjoy these shows, and you should totally go to one sometime. I wish I could go more often, but the scheduling isn't ideal for me.

West Coast Geeks VS Nerds - "The Island" vs Jurassic Park

With a new year comes a new season of West Coast Geeks VS Nerds. For those of you new to the show, here's the rundown: Geeks Versus Nerds is a live debate on a contentious pop culture issue, with a team representing each side, defending their position and attacking the other. A moderator maintains order and sets up the rules for the debate to keep things moving along without devolving into an Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny. The final decision is made by the audience, who cheer loudly for their champion. There's also drinks and food available, so it's a great time for everyone involved.

Each show features two debates. The opening act for this month's show was an unorthodox one, attempting to answer a curious question: Which vacation spot is the deadlier, more unappealing choice? The mysterious mythical Island from LOST, or the pre-historic nature preserve Jurassic Park? The two sides took the stage and rolled for initiative (with D20s no less), then presented their opening arguments.

The Nerds opened with the obvious: It's an island populated entirely by genetically-engineered prehistoric murder machines that can and will hunt you down as prey. They also lamented the park's awful transportation system, a series of slow-moving jeeps on rails. Finally, the state-of-the-art security by Neuman? Yeah, sounds like a lemon to me.

The Geeks countered with a rundown of all the most terrifying aspects of life on The Island. It's only accessible via plane crash, it's got nightmarish monsters and reality-warping properties, a doomsday machine buried in a secret bunker, and two different factions of killer natives out for your blood. Hard to top that...

Round 2 consisted of the two sides attempting to praise the virtues of the opposing side's destination of choice. Team Nerd explains how the Island is essentially a TARDIS, a shape-shifting realm that conforms to your wishes and even possesses miraculous healing properties. And lest we forget, there's even a golf course!

Team Geek counters with the fact that Jurassic Park was explicitly built to be a tropical resort, with no expense spared by the rich eccentric who designed it. It features all the amenities of a world-class retreat, and is host to the most exotic wildlife on the planet. The Island may be cool, but Isla Nublar was specifically intended to be the world's greatest vacation spot.

Round 3 centers around the MooMan Question, a specific debate question posed to both sides which results in abstract thinking and unorthodox conclusions. The question for this round was simple: Which person had the worst experience at each respective location? This seemed to turn the groups against themselves, as both sides seemed to be unable to reach a consensus on who had the worst time. Team Nerd seemed to be split between lan Grant and Ian Malcolm. With Grant, he was forced to spend both of his trips to the park having to bond with annoying children and come to terms with his career being rendered irrelevant by the mere existence of living dinosaurs. Malcolm was maimed by a T-Rex in his first trip to the islands, and then had to chase another one across San Diego.

The conclusion reached by Team Geek was that Charlie had the worst time on The Island. A drug addict forced to detox due to being cut off from his supply, he had almost kicked the habit when a plane filled with even more drugs happened to crash on the Island and send him into relapse. The best thing that happened to Charlie was drowning in a submarine, which says a lot.

Round 4 asked each team to present the opposing side's destination in the form of an advertisement. Team Nerd made a good effort in their presentation by outlining all the things you can do on the Island, like learn Korean, or play golf! Team Geek countered with a slogan and a mascot, which made for a far more enticing presentation.

The final round of the debate is where both sides are let off the leash and allowed to directly engage each other. The positions are made clear for the audience. The Nerds claim that people die more often in Jurassic Park, which is statistically true. The Geeks claim that people die more AWESOME in Jurassic Park, which is also hard to argue with. In the end, the audience cheers were very clear on their choice, and Team Nerd came out the winners. Jurassic Park is the worst vacation destination ever!

After a brief intermission (and an opportunity to use the bathroom and order more drinks...), the show resumed with the main debate of the night: Who is the better 2nd In Command? Spock of Star Trek, or Darth Vader of Star Wars? Sadly, I wasn't able to find out, because I work super early in the morning and I can't stay out late on a weeknight. I know, I'm lame. Still, I had a great time with my friends and I want to thank both teams, the moderator, and the venue for bringing us all a fun show. I'm definitely coming back for the next show!