July 21, 2013

Welcome to Zbornak

I love playing Nintendo's new Animal Crossing: New Leaf for the 3DS. I've been totally immersed in the game since I bought it a month ago. It's incredibly relaxing - there are wonderful characters to interact with, soothing music, fun and oddball tasks to accomplish and some often hilarious, surreal moments. It's the closest I've come to experiencing actual ZEN!

I've played the earlier versions, Wild World and City Folk, but New Leaf is clearly an improvement.

For anyone unfamiliar with the franchise, Animal Crossing isn't necessarily a "game". It's more of a simulated environment that is fully customizable and interactive. Basically, you create a town in which you move into and start to meet your fellow neighbors (all of which are jolly, anthropomorphic animals) and begin to create a life for yourself by running errands, collecting and buying items and paying off your home mortage in addition to a multitude of activities to participate in. My favorite is playing hide-and-seek with my neighbors!

The game has a nice feature that allows you to take screenshots whenever you want, so here are a few I've grabbed...

(By the way, the name of my town is Zbornak)

If you aren't careful, you can be attacked by killer bees.
Your friends can be moody, too.
This guy is great. He'll offer little bits of wisdom.
"the mange"
My Jason Voorhees look.
I caught him in the river! Notify Barbara Steele at once.
Visiting a friend's town.
Just sittin'.
They call me "pizza".
One of the things Animal Crossing is notorious for - the dreaded pitfall traps!

July 17, 2013

Desperate for Each Other

A few years ago I caught a wonderful TV movie from 1992 called Maid for Each Other. It stars Nell Carter as a feisty jazz singer and Dinah Manoff as a recently widowed socialite who decides to get a job and become a maid. To make a long story short, there is a murder and the two of them are on the run and desperate to solve the case! 

Dinah and Nell are fantastic together and it almost feels like the film is an attempt at a possible pilot. I could easily have imagined these characters getting their own series where they would become amateur detectives solving crimes every week.

While watching it, I came to a startling realization. I began to notice an uncanny resemblance to an earlier cult favorite - Desperate Living (1977)!

Here are a few examples...