DID YOU READ

“Darkon” and Four Other Documentaries About Gaming

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In his book Mother Night, Kurt Vonnegut writes: “We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.” Someone should mention that to the participants in Darkon, a LARP (live-action role-playing game) where, since its founding in 1985, normal everyday people dress up in homemade armor and pretend to be inhabitants of a fantasy realm, including wizards, warlords, and princesses. The LARPers take over soccer fields in suburban Maryland to battle over pretend land in a pretend country and then pack it up and go back to their day jobs. The historic battle between the imaginary kingdoms of Mordom and Laconia was captured in the documentary “Darkon,” which airs today on IFC.

The world of LARPers and their less live action-oriented brethren of the RPG (role-playing game) is a fascinating subject, combining aspects of anthropology, sociology, and homegrown cultural study. Yet, few documentarians have turned their camera lenses on to this insular world. That said, its rumored that a new Dungeons and Dragons documentary is coming out in 2013 in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of the role-playing game. Until then, here are five documentaries for those interested in delving deep into the world of the gamer without leaving the comfort of their couch:

1. “Darkon”

2. “Uber Goober

3. “Life with the Dice Bag”

4. “The Dungeons & Dragons: Experience”

5. “Men Of War”

“Men Of War” A Documentary About Role Playing Games from Tiw on Vimeo.

“Darkon” airs on IFC today at 1:45 p.m. ET and Feb. 23 at 6:30 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. ET

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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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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.

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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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