DID YOU READ

All’s Disquiet on THQ’s “Homefront”

All’s Disquiet on THQ’s “Homefront” (photo)

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This week, after months of hype and a multimillion advertising blitz, “Homefront” finally landed on store shelves everywhere. Much has been made of the game’s provocative premise, which has the United States being invaded by an exponentially more aggressive North Korea in a decade’s time. Add in the fact that legendary screenwriter John Milius (“Red Dawn,” “Apocalypse Now”) contributed to the story and people were expecting a gut-wrenching, red-blooded shoot-em-up of the first order. It rang up 200,000 in pre-orders, not a shabby number for a new IP in these uncertain times.

Except that “Homefront” isn’t that. Oh, it’s okay. The multiplayer portions set up massive, chaotic battles and have won nods for their quality. However, in the single-player campaign, lackluster shooting gameplay finds an unwelcome partner in narrative that values shock over character development. But the world-building is superb, floating the consequences of a horrible event all around you and making you want to play–that is, to say get revenge–in ways that the narrative and mechanics do not. The problems muddy up what’s enticing about the game.

Many critics agree that “Homefront” is a middle-of-the-road experience and their opinions got pulled into Metacritic, generating a Metascore of 72 for the game. Here’s where things get dramatic. That score caused THQ’s stock price to plummet more than 20%, from $5.94 to $4.69 per share. Yet, THQ issued a press release yesterday asserting that “Homefront” moved 375,000 copies at retail, a number that they’re pleased with. This comes after earlier statements by execs that the game would have to sell 2 million to break even.

It’ll likely take a month or two before the verdict gets delivered on just how successful “Homefront” is. But, it’s ironic that game centered on a sociopolitical clash has generated a battle of dueling narratives. Is it a success or not? Did it go too far or not far enough? Will it have a negative effect on THQ or bolster its efforts to grow new franchises? Of course, some of these answers can only come from corporate decision-makers. It’ll be enlightening, however, to see if THQ does move on with the purported sequel if “Homefront” doesn’t wind up being a blockbuster hit.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.

via GIPHY

It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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