This is something I wrote on Tumblr back in 2014 about how depressing I find the Electronic Entertainment Expo. It was largely just a long-winded way for me to link to past videos I’d made about E3, but I also think it’s some of my better, sadder writing and I tend to share it on Twitter and Tumblr every year because I still feel the same about all of it. I just now decided it might as well go here, too. Enjoy!
I guess E3 2014 is next week, huh? You may not know this about me, but once, approximately 48 years ago, I made videos about video games. In theory, I might even do it again one day! But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
I went to E3 last year. I had a horrible time. I’ve been to E3 three times now and have found each time less enjoyable than the previous. The first time I went in 2002 was because I could and it was supposed to be lots of fun and it’s like the Mecca of Gaming or whatever, yeah? I was rather young, with my head certainly not full of wonder, but at least there was still a great deal of ignorance in there, so it seemed like a good idea, like a thing I’d theoretically enjoy, being a gamer and all that.
Probably not enough people know this but Jon Glaser is one of the funniest comedians going. I’m guessing most people who aren’t me will know him as Councilman Jeremy Jamm from Parks and Recreation (I didn’t watch it) but he does lots of great stuff besides. For one thing, he’s Laird, the best non-main recurring character on Girls. Also, he and H. Jon Benjamin did one of the most tedious yet brilliant stand-up bits ever.
However, Glaser’s best work has been with PFFR, the art collective/production company of weirdos responsible for cult classic Wonder Showzen and some of the more divisive, but in frank actuality, best programs on Adult Swim, Xavier: Renegade Angel and The Heart, She Holler, the latter of which featured Glaser as a guy who had his hands replaced with two cans of beer. PFFR then produced Glaser’s Delocated about a douchebag in the witness protection program. It was also really great and is absolutely worth checking out if you missed it.
Now PFFR’s producing another Glaser production, the miniseries Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter, the genesis of which was apparently some nonsense, imaginary show Glaser invented on the spot during an interview with Jimmy Fallon two years back. Because Adult Swim is nothing if not a network that champions nonsense, this is now a real thing about, well, a werewolf hunter hunting werewolves in a small town known for its abundance of B&Bs. It stars Glaser as the titular character, as well as Scott Adsit (30 Rock and The Heart, She Holler), Delocated alumnus Steve Cirbus, and, oddly enough, Stephanie March, who nobody knows from anything except Law & Order: SVU.
The original British version of The Office is such a beautiful, sad, funny, dramatic, cringey, redemptive work of art. It is compact, but tells a complete story that is tragic because it has to be because life in that sort of workplace–a company that produces and sells paper goods–would be tragic. And it is tragic in such mundane ways that are so well-observed. It is so much better than the American version because it feels far more real and relatable and it doesn’t go on for 346 seasons or whatever.
I wrote this thing which I think is the longest video game article ever written about how Shovel Knight near-perfectly blends retro and modern gameplay: