Episode 8 – 1980s Reference

We’re done!!! After one last robot fight, video game speedrun, and  rote recitation of a popular “geek” movie, we’ve finally reached the titular 372nd page.

Tune in for the Dumb Sentence of the Book, one last Fan-Fic or Real, Great Moments in Villains with Tiny Robots, and some extremely creative listener emails. Nathan’s alternate ending skit is available here and Taylor’s song is available here.

We are auctioning off the copies of RP1 we read to make this podcast with all proceeds going to charity. Check them out here, please, we want them out of our houses.

Thank you for joining us on this journey! We’ll maybe be back with another title, after we take in some creative work that is actually good.

3 Replies to “Episode 8 – 1980s Reference”

  1. After reading this book, I had to watch season two of Stranger Things to restore some the 80’s fandom I had lost as a result of Ernest Cline’s force-fed nostalgia. It’s like if a “You Know You’re A Child Of The 80’s If” Buzzfeed List came to life and infested an otherwise staggeringly straightforward VR story. I used to be shameless in my 80’s references, but this book has opened my eyes and realized that it’s possible to go too far, and for that I thank the author whole-heartedly.

  2. Fun fact: somebody who reviewed Ready Player One (the book) went on to review Ready Player One (the movie) and chastised the movie for leaning heavily on its pop/nerd culture basis in a desperate bid for relevancy. I believe this was the fellow from the AV Club, because the comments section had a thread which brought up this podcast and asked why he (1) never responded to the inquiry and (2) faulted the movie for the exact same reasons he had praised the book.

    Instead of doing something sensible like admitting that there were faults or explaining that his subjective views and engrossment in the fantasy allowed him to indulge. He didn’t even acknowledge whether he still stood by his assessment (which, you know, entertainment is very subjective, he’s very much entitled to his opinion). Instead, he went off on a screed about how people only hate Ready Player One because of Gamergate.

    Yes. Because Gamergate retroactively made Cline’s prose atrocious, throttled his characters into worhtless stereotypes, made Artemis’ performative feminism noxious, and turned Wade into a Gary Stu capable of conquering every challenge by just pulling knowledge or abilities out of his ass without even a cursory attempt to justify them.

    The implication in his comments was that if you don’t like Ready Player One it’s somebody else’s fault, he’s still totally correct in it being a great book, and there’s a chance that you actually hate women if you didn’t enjoy it. (Stay classy, AV Club Guy.)

    Altogether it’s probably for the best he didn’t deign to talk to you.

  3. “The implication in his comments was that if you don’t like Ready Player One it’s somebody else’s fault, he’s still totally correct in it being a great book, and there’s a chance that you actually hate women if you didn’t enjoy it. (Stay classy, AV Club Guy.)”

    So, in other words, your average AV Club article over the last several years. This is basically everything they review now.

    I enjoyed this podcast. Ready Player One is a bad book and the author should feel bad. That said, there were some times when I felt Conner and Mike were really reaching for things to complain about. Talking about how many references to pop culture are made in the book is pretty pointless when everyone knew going into it that that was the book’s whole schtick.

    Additionally, the book was clearly intended to pander to a specific type of geek, and several times they complain about confusing references that people who are part of the target demo would get without any problem. But the people reading the book for this podcast not getting some of the references because they aren’t part of the target demo does not make the book bad. The book is plenty bad on it’s own without having to reach for this kind of stuff.

    Finally, I find it cute that the podcasters seemed to be clinging to the idea that the author had an editor right up until the end. I know that a book being published with no editing is a thing that pretty much doesn’t happen, however, beyond a certain point, when all other explanations have been ruled out, one must consider the impossible. I cannot imagine a universe where this book had any editing at all. I don’t know how Ernest Cline managed to convince his publisher to forgo the normal way of doing things but I think we have to seriously consider the hypothesis that this was the first draft.

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