The Legend of Zelda, Louie and more new releases for this week, June 21, 2011
Just because it's summer doesn't mean we can't all sit indoors and consume entertainment. After all, the hotter and nicer it gets outside, the more you need to just relax and unwind in front of the TV or a good book. Unfortunately, there are apparently no books being released this week, but we do have plenty of other recommendations for ways to use your time this week, including a remake of one of the critics' favorites games of all time, science fiction love, offensive humor and plenty more.
The Adjustment Bureau (DVD, Blu-Ray)
Oh goodness, the theme of fate and destiny sure does seem to be a popular trait in science fiction these days. Regardless of whether or not you've seen a billion movies about free-will recently, The Adjustment Bureau offers up a good enough story about one man's struggle with a group of people willingly controlling his life as he searches out love. Sure, it's a bit shallow in its execution, but the ideas are there and the film works, provided you don't invest too much into it.
Louie: Season 1 (DVD, Blue-Ray)
We've never been clear exactly how Louis CK managed to sell his show to the FX Network, but somehow he did, and the socially awkward, self-loathing comedian has been rocking ever since. In the time-honored tradition of nearly every comedian-turned-sitcom actor, Louis essentially plays himself, which works out rather well considering he's one of comedy's most wrongheaded and offensive standups. Provided you're not very politically correct, you'll find a lot to laugh at here. But if you're easily offended, you should probably keep as far away as possible.
Shadows of the Damned (PS3, Xbox 360)
Dick jokes are hard to pull off without being completely idiotic, but that's exactly what Shadows of the Damned is trying to do. To accomplish the task, they've created a game clearly inspired by grindhouse and cheesy horror then combined it with a script penned by a 14-year-old kid with a massive boner. Somehow it ends up working, perhaps because it manages to deliver these lines with a dry wit usually reserved for things that are actually funny. The gameplay keeps pace, too, and for fans of the Resident Evil series, this game will feel like a second home. It might be one of the strangest games you'll play in a long while, but each dick joke is lathered up with enough style that it's hard not to appreciate what's going on here.
At its core, Trenched is a tower defense game. But if you're willing to dig into it a bit, it's so much more than that. Coming from Double Fine, the studio behind Costume Quest, Stacked, Retronauts and others, it's a game that looks simple on the surface, but is filled with more depth than most full-priced games. That's because it's not just a tower-defense game -- it's a tower-defense game where you can control one character, in this case a mech called a Trench. It's also a game filled with the studio's trademark earnest humor, well designed characters and superb dialogue. Tons of customization, online multiplayer and hours upon hours of gameplay -- all for just $15.
Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (3DS)
There have been plenty of people out there willing to call Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time the greatest game in existence. So when Nintendo decided to update it with fancy new graphics, 3D support and motion controls for its new 3DS handheld, people started claiming again that it was the best game in existence. While that's certainly not entirely true, it is a damn fine game and one worth playing or replaying -- provided you're one of the few to actually purchase a 3DS.
Scud: The Disposable Assassin: The Whole Shebang, by Rob Schrab (paperback)
Originally released a couple of years ago, Scud: The Disposable Assassin: The Whole Shebang collected together all 24 issues of the Scud series, which took something like fourteen years to complete. This reissue comes in the form of a paperback, but still captures everything about the series that matters, which is to say it's incredibly quirky, bizarre and a fantastic read. Writer/artist Rob Schrab went on to direct or write The Sarah Silverman Program, episodes of Childrens Hospital, Parks and Recreation, a section of the Academy Awards and plenty of music videos. Scud was one of his first creations.
Plastic Farm, by Rafer Roberts
Plastic Farm is not your normal graphic novel. Starring Chester Carter, it tells the story of a man abandoned at birth and raised in a haunted psychiatric hospital. Inside his head is a dinosaur-riding cowboy and possibly a collection of the characters he meets as he tells his life story to anyone who will listen at an airport bar. Among those people are cannibal famers, zombie cops, religious zealots and plenty more. What's real and what's imagined isn't even a question here -- it's more about how far reality can be pushed before something gets destroyed.
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