Sunday, October 11, 2009

Beatles Rock Band Pits TNY vs NYT

what's a videogame? Last month, when The Beatles: Rock Band launched, the New York Times gave a glowing review.  NYT scribe Seth Schiesel raved about the title, calling it a “transformative entertainment experience” and comparing it to the Fab Four’s first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.

For The New Yorker’s Farley Katz, Schiesel’d gone too far.  He’d jumped over the edge, into a fanboy abyss.  Back in the September issue of TNY, Katz penned a satirical critique of Schiesel’s Beatle-love.  He asked readers to, “before jumping to any conclusions, take a look at previous write-ups the Times has given big games.”  Katz then proceeded to namedrop a few landmark games and give them mock reviews in a tone similar to the NYT Rock Band piece:

“The new Nintendo video game Duck Hunt is a game about hunting ducks, right? Wrong! […] In this deep, rich cultural narrative, we are the ducks and society the gun...”

“Super Mario Brothers will be to the eighties what Second World War was to the forties, except good.”

“A princess has been kidnapped. Her name is Zelda, she is beautiful, and I love her.”

I’m incredibly amused by Katz’s goofy attempt to put Schiesel in his place.  I’m even more amused that both That Hoity-Toity Guy Who Reminds Me Of Mr. Peanut and The Old Grey Lady have entered into some sort of fisticuffs over the correct amount of praise one should bestow on a game. 

I want more big-name media outlets to get in on this.  Where’s the Time vs. O Magazine debate on GTA’s effect on our children?  Where’s the Popular Mechanics vs. Wired fight over whether or not a Gundam is technologically feasible?  Attention major magazines/newspapers: I eagerly await your pointless fights.