Updates and Sad Faces vis-à-vis Mass Effect 3.
EA/Bioware spent so much time over the last few weeks being complete dicks that it was weird to kind of feel sorry for the Mass Effect 3 game developers when I read the transcripts and reports from Friday night’s PAX panel. They had all teamed up to completely shit the bed, but these were the folks that had to bring out the buckets and sponges and try to clean it up as best they could, knowing full well that big shitty brown stain is soaked in too deep into the mattress to ever really go away.
"I’ll never eat pudding again!"
As more and more people finish the game and vary their playthroughs it turns out I was off a little in my previous column. You can forgive me for not playing through the game again myself as I have every single Bioware game I’ve ever purchased. This one, as it was presented the first time, just wasn’t worth it. I’ll get to that at the end of the column.
Back to the point at hand, Thursday Bioware announced that they would release an ME3: Extended Cut free DLC sometime in the summer that would “provide answers players are looking for while maintaining the team’s artistic vision for the end of the story arc in the Mass Effect universe.”
So no new ending means that there’s probably no GOOD ending coming up. It could also be possible that these new “cinematics” may make everything a lot different and better. We’ll just have to wait and see, but considering how absolutely poorly the ending worked last time, it’s hard to see how adding more of it is going to fix it.
If I didn’t want salmonella bacteria in my ice cream, adding more salmonella bacteria doesn’t seem like a good solution. But, as you can read in my column below, it’s what I expected they’d try to do. Let’s see if it works.
"Hey, don’t drag us into this."
The backlash against Bioware and its parent company has been unprecedented as far as I can tell. No matter what happens, there’ll always be a contingent of “angry nerds” to vow to never buy or play a game again over something they don’t like. My son tells me there have been petitions and boycotts over the firing of voice actors in Sonic the Hedgehog games, for God’s sake. Some people are shit-eating nuts, for sure. What was so interesting about the ME3 response was its universality. It wasn’t just the angry nerds who were mad that Ashley’s hair was down (what the fuck, nerds?). Those mouth breathers were going to hate anything.
And where’s the silky shine??
It was all the rest of us who, after the Buzz Aldrin-voiced grampa failed in his latest attempt to choke his grandson to death with a Werther’s Original and story about “the Shepard,” all shook our heads collectively and asked aloud, “What the hell was that?”
Yes. More confusing even than a pregnant man.
It never occurred to me that an “internet movement” could change a game’s ending. I didn’t even know the ME3 one existed until I read through the Wikipedia page after beating the game about two weeks after it came out. Like I said, I had heard of futile little can-kicking over games groups before, but this one was different. EA/Bioware had awakened the sleeping giant. The worst thing that could have happened actually happened after the release of Mass Effect 3; We all collectively figured out that we cared a whole lot more about the Mass Effect story than EA/Bioware did.
"You better tell people you just walked into a door!"
The Bioware and ME team then went into a phase I like to call, “let’s prove how stupid we all are.” They immediately started talking about their critical scores and how many games they had sold. Well, great, but the critic scores probably mostly came in before they got to the ending (we all love the first 95% of the game, problems and all) and all those people who bought the game and made it a bestseller, well, guys, those are the same people complaining about your shitty ending. Gloating in our sad faces was not the way to go.
To date, ME3 has shipped 3.8 million copies and sold around 2.8 million. That’s a lot, sure, but if you step into your local Gamestop you’ll see that the price has already dropped $10 or more on new copies and the Pre-Owned shelf is overwhelmed with traded-in copies of ME3 from unhappy buyers. Good luck moving that, guys.
The same thing is happening on Amazon.com, with used copies already available for less than $35. That means there’s a glut of used copies. People aren’t keeping their games. If they aren’t keeping them, they sure as hell aren’t going to buy any new paid DLC so EA/Bioware are already going to take a significant hit in the wallet.
So great, EA/Bioware. Brag about the number of games you sold and shipped so far. For some reason, I think Gamestop, Amazon and the other retailers don’t seem quite as excited.
And as for game critics, well, game criticism in general has been ridiculed for years. Sites and publications are afraid to give games bad reviews and make the publishers angry because it can cost them advertising revenue. All that’s been documented. What hasn’t yet been documented is how many of those “critics” who gave you “perfect scores” haven’t, since the controversy hit, criticized the ending too. When the guys you’re using to blurb your games now say your ending was weak, maybe that’s not something to flex in the middle of the ring over.
Nice panties, buddy.
The next thing EA/Bioware did was whine that we were all being mean. They’re still doing this, unbelievably, even Friday at PAX. In Ray Muzyka’s press release on March 21 (by the way, how proud are of yourself are you that you didn’t know that guy’s name on March 20th?) he said “ Some of the criticism that has been delivered in the heat of passion by our most ardent fans….has unfortunately become destructive rather than constructive.”
So, in short, some of the things we’ve said have hurt their feelings. Well boo-fucking-hoo. Yes, I’ve called some of you stupid before, in fact I did it just a few paragraphs above. You know how to not get called “stupid?” Don’t do stupid shit. Nobody thinks you suck if you don’t suck. So stop sucking. Stop being dumbasses.
For instance, only a dumbass would cite sales and a handful of reviews to show what a great product they’ve produced. You know who sells a lot? Nickelback. Their last album got a good review in Billboard magazine too. I could probably Google up some more but I won’t. Because why? Because it’s fucking Nickelback, that’s why.
"It’s because we’re both Canadian, isn’t it?"
They’ve sold 50 million albums, but they’re still Nickelback. Do you want to be Nickelback?
IGN gave you a 9.5. That’s great. They also gave the new Rayman game a 9.5 and some X-Box live/PS3 store downloadable game about a guy riding a dirtbike a 9.5. Does that mean those games are EXACTLY as good as Mass Effect 3? Both those games got higher ratings than your new Star Wars: The Old Republic game. Man, they must both be better, huh? I guess sometimes you just have to admit that your Star Wars MMO will just never live up to the nigh-unreachable standard of excellence set by a downloadable dirtbike stunt game.
EA’s stock price took a hit too (which they haven’t been too eager to discuss) and then about a week ago they were voted the most evil company in America by readers of The Consumerist magazine. To which they continued their “Look at us, we’re really idiots and can’t help it” public relations strategy, this time using smug sarcasm.
John Rosenburg, the soon to be unemployed and “former” EA spokesperson said, stupidly, “We’re sure that bank presidents, oil, tobacco and weapons companies are all relieved that they weren’t on the list this year. We’re going to continue making award-winning games and services played by 300 million people worldwide.”
The only photo of John Rosenburg I could find.
Now, forget about possibly offending all those people that work for oil, tobacco and weapons companies that probably buy your games. Also, forget about that “weapons companies” crack at all since a whole lot of these “award-winning games and services” you make require digital representations of those same weapons to shoot digital people in the face. Just ignore both of those things and focus on this one— people who finish a cigarette get something that people who finish Mass Effect 3 don’t get—Satisfaction.
And nobody wants to play Mass Effect 3 after sex.
So there was all that idiotic whining and then there was the “Artistic integrity” thought that got passed around. Frankly, when you release day one paid DLC that’s actually already on the disc, you’ve lost the “artistic integrity” argument right off the bat. When you do poor work, poor “work-for-hire” work, mind you, you can’t hide behind that.
EA’s Medal of Honor reboot sold 5 million copies in its first two months, more than ME3 has even shipped and, unless they work some sort of miracle in that free summer DLC, more than ME3 will sell in total. About a month after it came out, EA’s Patrick Soderlund said that “the game didn’t meet our quality expectations.” This was a successful game. More successful than ME3 will most likely be and he was candid enough to say that. Now, two years later there’s going to even be a sequel.
Man, I bet they’d be worth a whole 25 points of useless war assets.
EA and Bioware have circled their wagons here and tried to control the damage as best they can with little luck. Before last Thursday you could not find any good press on Mass Effect 3. Now you can, but not because of the free ending DLC in the summer, but because of the massive free multiplayer DLC they’re about to unleash. Any article about the ending is still asking, “Will this appease angry fans?” type questions. Still not the best press to be had.
There’s no question that people will lose their jobs over this. Silently, to be sure, contracts won’t be renewed and most, if not all of the writing staff and decision makers behind ME3 will be out of work in a year or, at least, will not be employed by Bioware. That poor, pitiful panel that spoke at PAX Friday are all dead men walking and they probably all know it. If the EA honchos can be unhappy with a game that sold twice as many copies as ME3 a month after its release, they’re probably really pissed over this mess.
Release more spittle, please.
At some point someone will make a documentary about the whole thing, if they haven’t started it already. It’ll be interesting what people say a year or two after the fact and how candid they all are. With what’s been revealed already in the PA forums by a member of the writing team and what was obviously dropped from the game (but left in the art book), I certainly won’t want to miss it. This has been kind of a make or break moment for games in general, and certainly the story-telling power of the medium. It’s too bad.
Yesterday I realized I had never seen the “Shepard dies” ending to Mass Effect 2. My first playthrough everybody lived and in the three times I’ve played through it since, I’ve only lost one crewmember (Mordin) when I took Grunt with me on the final battle and sent Zaeed back with the Normandy crew. That ending, the “worst” ending of ME2 actually shocked me a little. It was still so, so good.
So, finally, I have a challenge to anyone involved in the creation of ME3. Go on youtube and watch some of those ME2 endings. Hell, watch all of them. If you can honestly say that what you did at the end of ME3 is as good as that, well, you’re probably lying. If not, we’re back to that “stupid” thing again that hurts your feelings so bad.
In that G4TV article on the PAX panel there was a point where ME3 producer Mike Gamble polled the room, asking the attendees which game was their favorite. The author, Nikole Zivalich, writes “ A few dozen raised their hands for ME1, the same number raised their hand for ME3, but 90% of the room raised their hand for ME2. I could tell by the faces of everyone on the panel they had not expected that.”
And now, my slightly contrite addendum to my previous ME3 column. Feel free to ignore it. Hey look. Spoilers ahead.
It turns out the Rachni Queen mission did have a varying result. For players like me who saved the queen in Mass Effect 1 the queen in ME3 will join you if she lives and add to your war assets. This is what happened in my game obviously and I figured, only half-rightly so, that it happened in everyone’s playthrough regardless of which choice you could still get the ME3 Rachni queen to join you, effectively making the choice you made in the first game completely meaningless.
While this new queen will join you if she’s not the one you saved in ME1, then she’ll betray you at some point and actually lower your assets. I think that’s pretty interesting. It’s still not a perfect solution to the promises made in ME2, but frankly it’s a lot better than I had originally thought it was. So, sorry Bioware. I was wrong on that one. Now, the fact that those war assets still don’t mean jack shit at the end of the game is a whole different issue.
The second thing I was a little off on was The Illusive Man and the Collector Base. I’ve since been told that if you give President Bartlett the Collector Base in ME2 instead of blowing up, Cerberus is a lot tougher in ME3. It doesn’t seem like a great change, but, hell, it’s something I guess. I really liked most of the anti-Cerberus missions and unlike a lot of people, apparently, I like the Mass Effect combat so I would have been fine with a stronger Cerberus either way. I would have much rather Captain Ben Willard have gotten the Reaper info another way, but, whatever. Nobody hired me to write it.
The rest all still stands as far as I can tell.
End the spoilers.
Super Bowls for everyone!
My first column is up at AskMen.com. It’s the best Super Bowl column featuring an auto-erotic asphyxiation joke you’ll read all week.
And one final thing. Sarah Palin is a Patriots fan. Yep. Rooting for the Patriots is not only like rooting for Ivan Drago in Rocky IV, but you’re also rooting for Sarah Palin. Enjoy that.
Paranormal Activity 3: Let’s talk about it.
The multi-verse aspect of string theory postulates that there are alternate universes to our own. Universes in which each choice we did not make in our reality was, in fact, made by our doppelgangers, who then continued on their lives on that new path, completely different from the path that we, in this continuum, travel down today.
Shit. I hit “back” too many times on my Android GPS app.
I’d like to believe there’s another earth out there, if the “Many-World Interpretation” of quantum mechanics is right, that’s floating blissfully in its orbit around the sun, never once having heard, seen or thought of Highlander 2: The Quickening.
Because, simply, it never existed in the first place.
One of these guys got paid a lot to reprise his role in Highlander 2. The other one is Christopher Lambert.
Paranormal Activity isn’t the first outstanding movie that was anally raped continually with horrible, unnecessary, shitty sequels, but it’s the one I most recently watched so I’m going to spend the next 1,000 or so words complaining about it.
Paranormal Activity was, probably, the scariest movie I’ve ever seen. It was also, easily, the best of all the “fake documentary” style horror movies (like Blair Witch and Cloverfield) and the first that I didn’t actively root for the main characters to die.
Please pick up your reward at your earliest convenience, witchy woman.
I liked Katie and Micah, even though he pronounced his name “Meeka” like a douche. Those two crazy kids won me over, so it was heartbreaking to see how it all ended. And each time the scenes switched to that night vision view of their bedroom, then the timer started to speed up, well, nothing I’ve ever experienced in a movie has had me more on edge.
So you can imagine how disappointed I was to learn there would be a Paranormal Activity 2. Of course, I still watched the movie, which I should admit is the most frightening movie about a haunted automatic pool skimmer in Hollywood history. I can honestly say I have never, not once, seen or even heard rumors about a scarier movie that featured multiple, lingering scenes of a pool skimmer lazily trolling in circles inside a pool or sitting on the concrete landing outside of the pool that it was purchased to skim.
Oops. I guess I should have put a spoiler warning in there.
So last year we got Paranormal Activity 3. Most of you, like me, were really looking forward to seeing what happened with that pool skimmer as the ending of Paranormal Activity 2 left its fate somewhat ambiguous. At the very least maybe PA 3 would pick up on the subplot (you might have missed it if you weren’t paying close attention) where a demon-possessed Katie stumbles into her sister’s house and abducts her annoying baby.
Dammit, where the hell is that diaper bag?
I need to take a moment here to talk about the laser-sharp focus of the demon at the helm of Katie’s body in PA 2. Within no time it’s already killed Micah and tossed him around the bedroom of their condo, hit the street barefoot, high-tailed it to her sister’s house and then nabbed that kid without even once taking a lengthy break to stand in front of a bathroom mirror to slowly massage and play with Katie’s boobs. …Maybe jump in the shower for a while and soap those puppies up real good, you know?
But, no, it didn’t do any of that. This demon’s eyes were on the prize.
And nothing else, apparently.
But PA 3 ignores all of that. Instead the movie goes all prequel-ly, with Katie showing up at her sister’s house sometime before the whole baby thieving incident with a big box of videos from the 1980s. Katie and Kristi toss the box in the basement and forget about it. A little later Kristi and her husband return home and find their house trashed. For some reason the husband, discovering his house ransacked, immediately rushes to the basement to check on those old VHS tapes. Shocker— They’re gone!
Then, the movie just openly shrugs its shoulders and we’re now watching a compilation of those old tapes of Katie, Kristi, her mom and doofus stepdad moving into a new house from 1988. A house with deadly secrets… like some really poor plaster work on the master bedroom ceiling and a dangerously loose foyer light fixture.
The mom (named Julie) and stepdad (his name is Dennis) first notice these problems when they are interrupted from filming their sex tape by an earthquake. The quake loosens the light fixture even more and causes the master bedroom ceiling plaster to disintegrate, ensuring what will surely be a lengthy and sternly-worded call to their contractor first thing Monday morning. …And maybe a follow-up with the local Better Business Bureau and municipal building inspector.
"We’re looking at some significant fines here."
The movie skips ahead past those scenes and instead moves to the basement where Dennis, a wedding videographer, is watching his sex tape when he notices something weird. When the plaster dust falls after earthquake it lands on an invisible shape. An invisible shape that was excitedly masturbating while Dennis was clumsily preparing to penetrate his wife’s vagina.
In the video, the demon, his erection wilting, is totally grossed out by the dust and is like, “ewwww,” before shaking it off and running out of the room, embarrassed with its forked tail parked firmly between its legs.
The demon, named Toby (yeah, that’s right. Toby), is obviously dealing with a lot of issues throughout the movie and spends most of his time moping around Katie and Kristi’s tiny closet. When he’s not in the closet, he’s lurking around in the bathroom, hoping to catch a glimpse of Julie’s giant 80s bush before she sits down on the toilet and drops a turd.
"Why am I suddenly craving Golden Corral?"
In his depression, Toby takes up street tagging, but since he’s too scared to venture far from his closet, he just begins drawing on its walls. The Tobester settles on a triangular eye to symbolize the problems inherent in Reaganomics, the police state and the escalation of the cold war. Needless to say this is completely lost on his audience as Dennis is convinced it’s some kind of witchcraft symbol after watching an expose about Mormonism on the Trinity Broadcasting Network.
Things are starting to make sense.
Toby can’t take it anymore and rampages throughout the house, scaring Dennis, Julie, Katie and Kristi into leaving and, you’ll not be shocked to learn, finally dislodge the shoddily installed foyer light in the process. They all go to Grandma’s house and everybody lives happily ever after… in that half the cast is mauled to death and Dennis is assisted in his lifelong ambition of being able to cram his head up his own ass.
"I’ve been haunted by that demon for years!"
That universe I talked about at the beginning. The one without Highlander 2? Well, maybe they didn’t escape the Paranormal Activity sequels. Perhaps they had to suffer through them as well, in addition to maybe a Jaws 5 or Leonard Part 7. Who knows what we’ve been able to dodge with all of our Final Destinations and Saws? Is Paranormal Activity 3 toohigh a price to pay to send Cool as Ice 2 or Grandson of Mask to another universe? I don’t think so, though I have to admit the thought that somewhere out there, beyond the veil of known space and the void between our universe and the next, there might be a place where the first Paranormal Activity exists all alone. I hope the Adam Greene that lives there can appreciate that as he moves it below Buckaroo Banzai Against the World Crime League on his Netflix queue.
It’s still not too late!
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7 Things that won’t be found on the Animal Planet TV Show FINDING BIGFOOT
Finding Bigfoot made its debut on Animal Planet last year and has become, needless to say, appointment television. Finding Bigfoot is a documentary series chronicling the nighttime, backwoods, completely sober adventuring of the Bigfoot Field Research Organization (BFRO).
The BFRO was formed in 1995 by ironically named unemployed law-school dropout Matt Moneymaker.
Moneymaker says he encountered his first Sasquatch, or “Squatch” as the BFRO calls them, in 1994 while on an investigation at a wildlife refuge outside of Kent, Ohio. After his anus healed, the BFRO was born.
Moneymaker’s right-hand man is fourth grade teacher and mellow jazz guitarist Cliff Barackman.
Barackman says on his website that he’s been known to spend as much as 200 days a year in the field hunting for Bigfoot. Which means his fourth grade class has probably watched The Neverending Story on a tape-loop about 178 times.
James “Bobo” Fay is the BFRO’s muscle. Bobo (yeah, that’s right, Bobo) is a commercial fisherman and former roadie for the band Sublime.
Bobo (He answers to it with no sense of shame, I swear to God) serves as the “Squatch” stand-in during the video and photo re-creations on the show. Bobo (I know!) claims he and “veteran” Bigfoot researcher John Freitas, all alone on a deep woods expedition, stumbled upon his first Bigfoot in 2001.
Rounding out this group of BFRO regulators is an actual scientist, Ranae Holland.
Holland is a fisheries biologist who has spent time with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). She specializes in interactions between brown bears and salmon and you might be asking yourself, “What in the holy hell is she doing on this show?” Well, Holland is, of course, the “skeptic” who is there to keep the rest of the researchers honest, using real science and observed animal behavior to, as Moneymaker sees it, totally ignore the mountain of evidence he continually finds.
With a crack team of experts like this, what won’t they be able to find?
No. 7: Bigfoot
This is going to be the saddest thing you’ll read on the internet all day; there is no Bigfoot. Hey, it hurts me just as much to write it.
On average, two new animal species are discovered every single week. In 2010, more than 2,000 new animals were added to the Earth’s Wikipedia page. And these aren’t just species of plankton and monster fish too deep for even Aquaman to yell at.
Use your inside voice, douche.
It includes bigger animals like the Walter’s Duiker (a West African antelope) and even new primates. In fact, in the last decade alone 63 new species of primates have been discovered, including a noseless monkey with Elvis hair in Southeast Asia and the awesomely named titi monkey in Brazil.
Somehow Bigfoot, which would be the largest primate on the planet, has eluded discovery.
In spite of thousands of people spending every free moment of their lives scouring the forests for Bigfoot, not a single specimen, living or dead, has been found. There are numerous reports and videos of Sasquatches crossing roads, but not one has ever been hit by a car. And before you object, saying that Sasquatches are too smart to be hit by cars, let me remind you that actual people are hit by cars every single day.
Bigfoot sightings have been reported all over North America and a breeding population for a species ranging from the Arctic Circle into the Florida everglades would be huge. Plus, most damning, really, there’s not a single piece of fossil evidence showing the migration to or existence of a large primate in North America.
Yes, it would be awesome if Bigfoot was real. I would easily pay upwards of $20 to watch one drink a Yoohoo chocolate drink while I toss apple slices at it through its cage bars. I can see in my mind’s eye right now Daniel Tosh, wearing a hand-knitted Rick Santorum sweater vest, ridiculing a video of a drunken obese woman falling into a Sasquatch enclosure at the San Diego Zoo. Could you saddle a Bigfoot and race it? Could you take a photo with one smoking a cigarette and flipping the bird? Sadly, we’ll never get to know. It’s just not going to happen.
No. 6. The Consistent Correct Grammatical use of the Word “Foot.”
Multiple times per episode Moneymaker says, with no sense of irony whatsoever, the word “Bigfoots.” That’s right, “Bigfoots.” He says shit like, “This area has the perfect habitat to support a colony of Bigfoots.”
Why not “Bigfeet?” What’s wrong with that? Or just use “Bigfoot” like you would the word “Deer,” as in, “The reason we seem to be unable to capture evidence of any Bigfoot in this area is because pretend animals do not exist.”
“Bigfoots” is a stupid word so it’s no surprise that Moneymaker uses it since he’s an idiot, but Cliff, a man with at least a 4-year college education, has no excuse for the term he created, “Bigfooting.”
“Bigfooting” looks like a word you’d be deathly afraid to Google. What most of us would take for granted as a term for a frightening sexual fetish involving the calloused toes of shoeless WNBA superstars, Cliff uses to describe the act of hiking through the forest searching for an 8-to-10 foot tall, 500-pound hairy bipedal primate that, for some crazy reason, will not materialize out of his imagination into the real world.
What nice big feet you have…
No. 5. Human Dignity
Have you ever heard a grown man stand in the middle of the woods and imitate the guttural, broguish, echoing call of a leprechaun? No? How about the plaintive whinny of a unicorn? You haven’t? Surely you’ve heard a human male, of sound enough mind to be allowed to walk the earth freely without being tackled, subdued and whisked away to the nearest mental health facility, stand in a clutch of trees, do a perfect imitation of a female minotaur and then eagerly listen for a response from a distant male minotaur? Nope?
Well, congratulations good sir or madam, you are in for a treat.
Yes. That really happened. And shit like that goes on nearly every episode. Cliff, Matt and Bobo will stand in a big circle jerk and just rattle off Bigfoot calls like they shouldn’t all be hit in the head with shovels. Not only that, they’ll bang sticks against trees and crack rocks together, each time cocking their ears into the night, listening intently for a Bigfoot to reply back with the opening drum solo from Hot for Teacher.
Sadly, the worst examples of this problem are the poor, pathetic witnesses the BFRO drag out in front of the world at their “Town Hall” meetings at the local Boar’s Nest in whatever town they happen to be close to. There, inevitably, some meth-addled slackjawed toothless shithead will stand up and recount the time they saw Bigfoot steal a picnic lunch, dunk a basketball over Lebron James or peek into the bathroom window of a 1972 house trailer.
Again, I refer you to the show itself.
Now, to skip the obvious thought you’re having here (that Bigfoot must love crispy blonde hair, a 70’s bush and big, floppy, potato-shaped naturals), I want you instead to think of the old woman/witness that seems convinced that she saw a giant hair-laden man-ape fogging up a trailer window when, presumably, Dog: The Bounty Hunter, was nowhere near the area.
I’m relatively sure he wasn’t, anyway.
This is someone’s mamaw, for God’s sake. Somebody’s crazy, lying mamaw, sure, but a sweet granny nonetheless. And now she’s made herself look even dumber than the actual non-Ranae members of the cast. A cast that includes a guy that has no problem at all responding to the name “Bobo.”
No. 4. Lost Time.
“I’ve been tracking sasquatches for 25 years,” is the first words you hear from Matt Moneymaker in the show’s opening credits. Ponder that for a moment. Twenty-five years spent traipsing around the countryside, not enjoying the actual wildlife and wonders of our natural world, but instead beating the bushes on the most epic snipe hunt of all time. For a quarter of a century Moneymaker has been misidentifying bear pawprints, deer shit, owl hoots and pothead teenagers in Pantera shirts.
It’s an honest mistake.
All because in 1994, while on a “stakeout” specifically to get proof of Bigfoot’s existence, Moneymaker had his “close encounter.” A “close encounter” that somehow resulted in not a single piece of hard evidence of sasquatchian shenanigans. It’s really too bad no video capturing or photographic technology existed way back in 1994.
Cliff’s biography will just break your heart. While Moneymaker looks like he’s constantly battling back a quesadilla burp, Cliff seems to be a relatively normal, nice guy. He’s a teacher and a musician and looks like he showers regularly, but instead of dating, socializing and generally trying to live a human life… maybe get married…have a couple of kids… Cliff instead spends two thirds of a year in the woods stomping through poison ivy, yelping to the sky and whipping sticks at trees in hopes of getting the attention of absolutely nothing.
As for Bobo. Well, hunting for Bigfoot is probably the most productive thing that guy can do until Jackyl gets back together.
It could happen at any moment.
No. 3. Scientific Acceptance
Let’s go back to the Elvis monkey for a minute. Scientists first heard about the snub-nosed King of Rock and Roll from local Myanmar hunters in early 2010. They were told, but had no evidence of, a large monkey with Elvis’s pompadour and Michael Jackson’s nose. A nose so stupidly designed by natural selection as to force this monkey to actually tuck its head between its legs when it rains so as not to drown.
The scientists were like, “That really sounds crazy. We’ve never observed anything so dumb in all of human history. We’ll probably need some actual evidence before we believe that load of bullshit.”
So the hunters went back out into the jungle, shot the Elvis/MJ hybrid monkey in the eye, brought it back to their village, made it pose for photos, then fucking ate it.
Now, I don’t doubt that a Bigfoot might be absolutely delicious. Nothing would please me more than to watch Chairman Kaga whip away the satin veiling revealing freshly sliced Bigfoot cutlets for an epic Kitchen Stadium throwdown between Iron Chef Morimoto and Bobby Flay. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
If memory serves… I will most likely eat only the sasquatch’s scrotum.
But that’s all just a dream. A sweet, flavorful, succulent, mint-jellied dream that can never come true no matter how badly we all, each and every one of us… generally speaking everybody reading this and hoping not to be judged… would give almost anything to sink my… I mean our teeth into the tender, savory, well-marbled flesh of a sasquatch. Dammit.
Regardless, that’s what science needs; proof. Proof so real you could, literally, taste it. Proof that, after 54 years of non-stop searches by thousands of people, has somehow not come to light.
No matter how hungry we all have been for it.
No. 2. The Proper Application of Occam’s Razor (by someone other than Ranae.)
Occam’s Razor is a principle that basically states that “the simplest explanation for something, everything being equal, is probably true.”
To put this into perspective with the show, let me give you a hypothetical situation. Say you’re at the bottom of a steep hill and find a skeletal deer carcass with a broken leg.
Do you think,
The deer was killed by one of the many deadly predators such as bears, wolves, mountain lions or coyotes in the area, possibly snapping its leg in a fall down the hill or when one of the common predators was feeding on it?
A large, 500-pound, 8-to-10-foot tall heretofore unknown by science primate, living unobserved, unkilled and uncaptured in all 50 states of the most technologically advanced society on the planet, stalked, killed the deer and snapped its leg either in the attack, or while feeding on it?
Don’t answer yet. Let’s see what Matt Moneymaker thinks about this very problem.
So Matt chose “B.” Because there’s absolutely nothing else that could have happened to that deer and Matt is dumb enough to begin eating his own poop at any moment.
No. 1. A Life’s Dream Fulfilled.
We’ve had a good time here, you and I, with this show. We’ve had some laughs.
But nothing I have written here will be as funny as what I’m about to show you. Before you watch this video though, you need to understand Bobo’s main purpose on the show. I mentioned at the beginning of this article that Bobo serves as the sasquatch stand-in for the team when they’re investigating a Bigfoot photo or video. At 6-foot-4 and 300-plus pounds, Bobo was absolutely born for this job. Certainly no other human I can think of is better suited to represent a giant, grunting, putrid-smelling, humanoid ape than Bobo. He has found his bliss.
Each episode usually begins with the team on their way to parts unknown to investigate a grainy photo or out of focus video of a sasquatch. They meet and interview the witness while looking at the video or photo and, inevitably, Moneymaker, Cliff and Bobo will determine with little doubt that the large dark blurry blob (or glowing night-vision blurry blob) in the photograph in question is a Bigfoot. Then, Matt and the team high-tail it to where the photo or video was recorded and reenact the photo with Bobo replacing the ‘Squatch.
That really happened. The Finding Bigfoot team completely proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that the “Bigfoot photo” they were investigating was just a dude in a winter coat… on a mountain… in the winter… in the snow.
Except none of them, with the exception of Ranae, believe that at all. They still think it’s a Bigfoot. Watch this one.
Yeah. So Mike Greene filmed himself in a gorilla suit reaching for a candy bar and left it out of focus just to cover his ass. Man, look at how Mike nearly shit himself when Bobo, not wearing a fake monkey suit, still gave off the exact same heat signature he did in his hoax video.
The team, again with the exception of Ranae, is completely flabbergasted at the results and begins to come up with all sorts of technical reasons why their recreation video is completely identical. Cliff even says aloud, dumbfounded, “You cannot ignore the context of the film. Mike was there at the entrance of this area here. He knows no one else was in here.”
Cliff, none of us has any doubt at all there was no other person besides Mike in that area. I believe, wholeheartedly, that Mike was the only person anywhere near his camera when he was filming his “sasquatch” eating a candy bar.
While Cliff is saying all this, Mike turns his eyes straight to the ground, looking like he could begin vomiting milk chocolate, peanuts and nougat at any moment.
Snickers really satisfies…
My favorite moment of the whole thing was Ranae, trying to fight a smile while saying, “In my opinion anyone of Bobo’s size and stature could have been captured in Mike’s video.”
Hey, you didn’t happen to notice how tall Mike Greene was, did you?
This kind of thing happens in every single episode. Every time Bobo and the team recreate the photo or video exactly, proving instantly it’s either a fake, a misidentified human or rotten tree stump. No sane person would believe anything else.
So, needless to say, Moneymaker, Cliff and Bobo all still believe the photos/videos are of a Bigfoot, grasping at any straw, no matter how thin to show that there’s no doubt that a fuzzy photo of a guy taking a steaming dump next to a river is, in fact, definitive proof of sasquatch’s existence.
Matt, Cliff and Bobo all claim to have had personal experiences with Bigfoot. Actual sightings that proved to them, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that sasquatches are real and, if their diet is any indication, in need of extensive diabetes testing.
It’d be ironic after all this to have to lose one of those feet, big guy.
But there’s no reason for us to believe these experiences were any different than the “evidence” presented on the show. They are TRUE BELIEVERS and there’s nothing they’ll come across in the woods that the BFRO won’t first think is a couple of Bigfoot recreating the final kung fu battle from Karate Kid Part 3.
Proving Bigfoot is a real animal means everything to these people. It’s made Cliff give up on any semblance of a normal adult life, it’s turned Matt into a raving lunatic and it’s forced Bobo to put off joining the Ron Paul 2012 campaign full time.
"I just can’t do it without ya, Bobes."
Cliff, Matt and Bobo are destined to perform this quixotic quest for our amusement as long as Animal Planet sees fit to air it. By God I won’t miss a single episode.
So ‘squatch on you princes of Bigfooting. You skunk apes of the wildwood. May your calls all be loud, ridiculous and continually filmed.
"Come at me, Bro!"
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