General Discussion

Rant, moan, rave and share - for all your chatter, natter, ETCETERA! 2013
ozoneocean at 1:40AM, Feb. 18, 2014
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Oh yes indeedy! The Power Ballad is a venerable style that may have excelled at!
We associate it with the ‘80s because that’s where it was really at its peak. But it's still very comon.
 
See Banes here singing “Right here waiting” - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_E2EHVxNAE
 
The classic genre defining hit “I want to know where love is” by Foriegner - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raNGeq3_DtM
 
A much later incarnation of the style by Aerosmith (I don't wanna miss a thing), a huge fave for some, I hate it myself - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vo_0UXRY_rY
 
And a much later crack at it still (I think it was in the 2000s?) by The Darkness, “Love is only a feeling” - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWljnSf20cc
 
The last is a slightly winking, satirical take on the style by a band who were deliberitly imitating the 1980s soft metal genre, though it seems just as good as anything from that time, it's one of my faves!
Those versions stay true to the original conventions of the thing I think, but all pop muscians belt our their own from time to time, from Pink, to Miley Cyrus.
 
ozoneocean at 1:51AM, Feb. 18, 2014
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Oh, oh, oh! My fave '80s power bllad of right this moment:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Cw1ng75KP0
“Alone” by Heart.
Starting out as a much more raw rock group in the ‘70s they embraced the ’80s hairspray, big speakers and reverb thing with a vengance! The lead were two sisters, Anne and Nancy Wilson. Anne got rounder and rounder as the years went on but her voice lost none of its power. She STILL has an extremely powerful voice even now.
 
Lonnehart at 2:28AM, Feb. 18, 2014
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Yep.  I remember reading about how Heart's lead had weight gain issues.   She still has a powerful voice.  My favorite song from them is “These Dreams”.  I thnk that was the title.  Trying not to confuse my Van Halen favorite with a similar title.

O… kay… now that Valentines is over, I'll show you DDers the creepiest local Valentine's commercial I've ever seen…..  Especially at the end.  O_O

Docomo Pacific Valentine's Special
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Wvs0a_EFhU
last edited on Feb. 18, 2014 3:06AM
bravo1102 at 7:28AM, Feb. 18, 2014
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ozoneocean wrote:
Anne and Nancy Wilson. Anne got rounder and rounder as the years went on but her voice lost none of its power. She STILL has an extremely powerful voice even now.
Anne's look only matches that of her aging audience.  How many reed thin teens who rocked out to Heart in the 1980s are now obese moms with minivans full of kids?  
Or just peruse the pictures from my 30th anniverary high school reunion.  Welcome to the Soft Rock hits of the FM 107.1 your hits at the shore, next up Heart…
ozoneocean at 7:48AM, Feb. 18, 2014
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I think the thing with Anne is that she started changing shape back in the late ‘80s, while her sister Nancy didn’t so that's why it's notable- not the fact that she did, but that it was rather sudden. She's lost a lot of size since actually.
 
Appart from that it's really irrelevent of course. I hadn't realised what a tallent she was; just saw their performance of Stairway to Heaven to honour Led Zepplein, and it looked like the guys really were honoured!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xufuZ0dCmLA
 
HippieVan at 8:05AM, Feb. 18, 2014
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Lonnehart wrote:
Yep.  I remember reading about how Heart's lead had weight gain issues.   She still has a powerful voice.  My favorite song from them is “These Dreams”.  I thnk that was the title.  Trying not to confuse my Van Halen favorite with a similar title.

O… kay… now that Valentines is over, I'll show you DDers the creepiest local Valentine's commercial I've ever seen…..  Especially at the end.  O_O

Docomo Pacific Valentine's Special
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Wvs0a_EFhU
 
Oh my god, that's terrible! XD
 
The guy is pretty cute, I feel bad for him that his friends and family will almost definitely bring this up his whole life. :P His “checking out a hot babe” face is hilarious. Even before she does the voice it looks a lot more like a mix of horrified and disgusted.
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bravo1102 at 6:34AM, Feb. 19, 2014
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ozoneocean wrote:
I think the thing with Anne is that she started changing shape back in the late ‘80s, while her sister Nancy didn’t so that's why it's notable- not the fact that she did, but that it was rather sudden. She's lost a lot of size since actually.
 

Actually Ann has had a lifelong problem with her weight and had gastic band surgery in the early 2000's.  She starved herself in the 1970s and 80's to stay thin.  She's a real ive person with a wieght problem and the resulting stress and panic our culture places on being thin.  Just like all of her supportive fans with those minivans and kids listening to hit stations.  Though named into the top Heavy metal bands of all time and such the first three albums were very folksy with only a handful hard rocking songs.  Especially Dog and Butterfly.  I got that one and was like “This is Heart?”  aren't they hard rock?   Thought the tape was labeled wrong or something but Ann's vocals were too distinctive.  

Wow the memories of me and car's tape deck with the big blue box of cassettes in the bck seat.  I think that box is still in my front shed and those cassettes are in wooden racks on the wall in my den collecting dust.   
Lonnehart at 2:05PM, Feb. 19, 2014
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I guess it's just something she couldn't avoid.  I still love Heart's songs though.

A screenshot from Champions Online…
Showing off Omega Soldier.  :)



And a question.  Her origin story (as I mentioned) involves her gaining her powered armor after a carless military truck driver accidentally drops a crate containing her armor (and doesn't notice).

Do you think real life militaries can be this careless?  I guess this is why even covert transport requires convoys instead of just a single vehicle….
last edited on Feb. 19, 2014 2:10PM
bravo1102 at 2:56AM, Feb. 20, 2014
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The truck hit a pot hole and the crate just kind of… you know… fell out.  Some real militaries aren't that careless.  Others misplace all kinds of stuff all the time.  

I mean walk into forest in Russia and there's a whole field of tanks they kind of forgot about and only use for spare parts.  And look brand new aircraft with still crated spares that there's noone to uncrate.  

The armor's red?  It's probably ex-Soviet that was sent to Iraq in 2003 for secret battle testing and forgotten about in all the hub-bub.  The Russians sent a pile of brand new anti-stealth radar that all didn't work and then hotfooted it out of there fast it got forgotten.  

Or lost out its place to some last minute finds of WMDs they had to move to Syria.  Hey it's a comic book super hero feel free to indulge in any conspriacy theory that floats your boat.
ozoneocean at 3:30AM, Feb. 20, 2014
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I used to bike ride every Saturday morning with my dad down to the port at Fremantle for coffee and breakfast- one morning cycling along the warf a saw a bulky grey shape just sitting on the concrete, with no one ele in sight anywhere.
It was a nice new F/A-18 Hornet jet fighter, with its wings neatly folded and red plastic wrapping intakes and other parts, I cycled up and looked it over pretty well and then cycled off.
 
Now I wouldn't have been able to steal it… the most I could have done was broken off a piece from somewhere, or bushed it over the warf into the ocean, if I were to hop in a big 4WD.
But still, that was a multi-million dollar peice of gear, left ungaurded, unatended, and unpacked, so like Bravo says I think your armour story is pretty sound.
 
bravo1102 at 5:11AM, Feb. 20, 2014
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ozoneocean wrote:
I used to bike ride every Saturday morning with my dad down to the port at Fremantle for coffee and breakfast- one morning cycling along the warf a saw a bulky grey shape just sitting on the concrete, with no one ele in sight anywhere.
It was a nice new F/A-18 Hornet jet fighter, with its wings neatly folded and red plastic wrapping intakes and other parts, I cycled up and looked it over pretty well and then cycled off.
Conversely when I was in the service there were some ancient RF-4E's sitting on the tarmac, it was the last unit to use them… and the guard chased me away even though I was in uniform.  So being a smart ass I went to the PAO (public affairs officer) spun a story about pictures for a IPMS model building article on the last unit to use the RF-4E and got all the pictures I wanted.  Sometimes as a model builder I'd know more about a piece of equipment than the geek guarding it.

Then there were the guards who chased us away from the new AH-64 Apaches. On our flight home we were housed in their maintenence hanger waiting for our plane and there they were with all the panels open just screaming TAKE PICTURES OF THE SENSITVE BLACK BOXES! And you think a mechanic cares if you take a picture of sensitve equipment?  Not on your life.  Nowadays he'll give you his email so you can send him a copy of the picture. 

Then there was the AFSOC (Air Force Special Operations Command) hush-hush stuff that got parked on the tarmac for a air show/open house.  Wouldn't tell you anything about anything.  So I'd tell him who he was and what his equipment was and he'd turn pale under his facepaint.  “How'd you know that?” “I built models of your AC-130 and HH-60 last year and it was in the IPMS magazine model build-up review article and the Squadron UH-60 in action book”

Yeah model builders are better spies than the KGB.  Want to find out about the latest military equipment?  Walk into a hobby shop and buy the most recent model kit of one.  The air force went crazy when Testors released the YF-19 Stealth fighter but Lockheed was laughing up a storm because it had purposely given Testors the incorrect information on how stealth would work.  But another designer did the MiG-37 Ferret and they guessed a lot closer to the still top secret F-117.

Conversely when the super secret MiG-25 landed in Japan some of the first people invited on site to look at it were designers from the local big model airplane company Hasegawa.  They wanted it splashed everywhere and sold to kids in hobby shops.
ozoneocean at 5:58AM, Feb. 20, 2014
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I like phantoms, the way the ends of the wings tilt up and the tail plains tilt down is such a lovely effect :)
 
That reminds me of when I was back in primary school- a friend of mine's dad was a professional model maker, like you. His house was valhalla, filled with detailed, beautifully painted models of every sort… I went to one of their group meetings once and won the door prize of a swordfish torpeedo bomber! :D
 
Anyway, when the US aircraft carriers came into port he'd get special invitations to visit and inspect stuff, ahead of the public visits, as well as trips to the air base and the navel base. All because of his being head of the model making group.
I always wondered at that wierd sort of elite status.
 
Lonnehart at 6:29PM, Feb. 20, 2014
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Well, the armor is actually created by an ex-Soviet scientist (old habits die hard and red is apparently a color of strength) who was killed by members of a Soviet supervillain faction who wanted the armor for themselves, but the military managed to get the armor out of his lab before they could find it.  Perhaps being in a hurry the driver of the truck doesn't realize what happened to it.  

As for the current wearer of the armor, they can't take it back as its computers now identify her as its permanent owner (the sensors within the armor require a specific type of person to wear it and she apparently fits that description).  And any attempt to change it (and her death) will cause the armor to self destruct.

It's amazing how much stuff “professional” militaries leave outside and unsecured…
ozoneocean at 7:40PM, Feb. 20, 2014
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Speaking of military harware-
On Tuesday morning as I was crossing the road to the trainstation I saw this large, bulky tan coloured vehicle driving up, which stopped in front of me because I was at a pedestrian crossing.
It was a weird layout looking at it from the front, so I thought it was some large old crane or mining tow vehichle, till I got a closer look.
 
It was really pretty big. I've never seen that model of vehicle anywhere, not in real life, not in a game, not in photos or movies- The base structure seemed to be based on those new anti-mine trucks: high wheelbase, big wheels. But the upper part was all tube steel. All elaborate framework, with the driver sitting completely out in the open. As it drove away I noticed a big heavy duty mount in the centre for a heavy machine gun or grenade launcher. The driver was dressed in a blue jumpsuit, like the navy wears here as a work uniform.
 
At a guess I would say it was a new replacement truck for the SAS unit that's in he area. They normally use 6x6 wheel drive Landrovers that are open top like that, with framework- they're not as big a wehicle and the framework isn't as eleborate as this new one though. This thing was a beast.
 
HippieVan at 8:01PM, Feb. 20, 2014
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I'm apartment hunting for the first time in my life. It's hard but also exciting!
 
I'm trying to find a place that will let me stay for just a month while I take a spring course, which is pretty tricky. Most people want to sublet for the entire summer so I'm getting a lot of responses like “If we can't find anyone to take it all summer we'll let you know.” Which isn't very useful.
 
I was also hoping to find somewhere that would let me take my cat but I haven't had any luck with that so far. :(
(No worries, she'll just stay behind with my family while I'm gone. I would just be happier with her there.)
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ozoneocean at 8:04PM, Feb. 20, 2014
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I found it  online!
The original trucks used by the SASR
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Range_Patrol_Vehicle
 
And the new one I saw:
http://www.strikehold.net/?attachment_id=384
http://www.supacat.com/files/gallery/750_constW/121214135703-SupacatHMTExtenda1.jpg
It's called a “Nary”, made by Supercat. Never heard of it before!
 
ozoneocean at 8:07PM, Feb. 20, 2014
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HippieVan wrote:
I'm apartment hunting for the first time in my life. It's hard but also exciting!
 
I'm trying to find a place that will let me stay for just a month while I take a spring course, which is pretty tricky. Most people want to sublet for the entire summer so I'm getting a lot of responses like “If we can't find anyone to take it all summer we'll let you know.” Which isn't very useful.
 
I was also hoping to find somewhere that would let me take my cat but I haven't had any luck with that so far. :(
(No worries, she'll just stay behind with my family while I'm gone. I would just be happier with her there.)
I hope you find one soon! And hope it doesn't cost too much!
 
bravo1102 at 2:31AM, Feb. 21, 2014
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ozoneocean wrote:
I found it  online!
The original trucks used by the SASR
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Range_Patrol_Vehicle
 

 A simple google search and I found at least two modelers who are scratchbuilding them plus a 1/35th scale conversion kit for commercially available Land Rover models.
And the new one I saw:
http://www.strikehold.net/?attachment_id=384
http://www.supacat.com/files/gallery/750_constW/121214135703-SupacatHMTExtenda1.jpg
It's called a “Nary”, made by Supercat. Never heard of it before!

 I did it's a model made by Airfix (well at least the British version)  And there's an article on a modeling forum about how to convert one to a “Nary”  Looks pretty simple.
last edited on Feb. 21, 2014 2:33AM
ozoneocean at 5:00AM, Feb. 21, 2014
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Yes, the Nary seems just a bit more open from what I saw… as if there's ever anough difference to justify a whole name change. Like with our “Austyer” battle rifles.
Strange to have such an open veichle for the army… the old ones were like that too and I suppose all their stuff is. They don't seem to go for armor except from mines.
 
Like the veichle before it, they're for long range patrols, driving hundeds of kilometers into the middle of nowhere and staying out for days and days… With no shelter at all from your truck, even while driving. I mean, I know that's how they used to do it in ww1 and ww2, and before that with horses, but it seems anachronistic and horribly uncomfortable, especially if it's as hot and dry as it is here right now.
 
bravo1102 at 2:30PM, Feb. 21, 2014
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Open vehicles are better than closed ones for scouting.  In hot nasty enviornments you don't want to be cooped up in an enclosed vehicle.  Only when actually being fired on does anyone want to get inside the vehicle.  Though ther are exceptions they usually end up being in tanks where they can bask in the warm safety of their armored cacoon. 

Death before dismount.
HippieVan at 7:47PM, Feb. 21, 2014
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I had kind of a funny encounter in the French area of town today. I was coming down from the second floor of a building where a bunch of stuff was supposed to be set up but it was all empty and dark. Met a small group of people coming up the stairs.
 
Me: There's nothing up there.
Lady: (in French) Pardon?
Me: Oh! Il n'y a rien.
Her: Oh! *turns to friend and speaks in accented English* There's nothing there!
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Lonnehart at 8:56PM, Feb. 21, 2014
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HippieVan wrote:
I had kind of a funny encounter in the French area of town today. I was coming down from the second floor of a building where a bunch of stuff was supposed to be set up but it was all empty and dark. Met a small group of people coming up the stairs.
 
Me: There's nothing up there.
Lady: (in French) Pardon?
Me: Oh! Il n'y a rien.
Her: Oh! *turns to friend and speaks in accented English* There's nothing there!
Have yet to meet an actual French person myself.  Still, what was it with that empty building?  What was supposed to be set up?

I remember long ago when I made attempts to speak Tagalog…. with hilarious results.
Me (attempting to speak in Tagalog): Gusto ko kumain ng bahay mo.
*younger cousins start laughing*
Me: What?
Mom: Do you really want to eat their house?

And then there was that other incident where I was helping my aunt prepare vinegar.  I asked for vinegar…  she reminded me that I should watch what I say in Tagalog.  And that you don't put vomit in Chicken Adobo.  -_-
ozoneocean at 9:07PM, Feb. 21, 2014
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I envy you polyglots!
 
HippieVan at 9:23PM, Feb. 21, 2014
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Lonnehart wrote:
 
Have yet to meet an actual French person myself.  Still, what was it with that empty building?  What was supposed to be set up? 

I remember long ago when I made attempts to speak Tagalog…. with hilarious results.
Me (attempting to speak in Tagalog): Gusto ko kumain ng bahay mo.
*younger cousins start laughing*
Me: What?
Mom: Do you really want to eat their house?

And then there was that other incident where I was helping my aunt prepare vinegar.  I asked for vinegar…  she reminded me that I should watch what I say in Tagalog.  And that you don't put vomit in Chicken Adobo.  -_-
 
Hahaha! Those are pretty good. As far as I know I've never said anything embarassing in French, although maybe no one ever told me. Oh, except for one time when I made a reference to my “chatte” (meaning a female cat) and then wasn't sure if it sounded sexual. :/ Fortunately that was in a room of other French students and not francophones, so if anyone understood it that way it was probably only the teacher.
 
The building was part of a historical festival we do here every February. Typically the second floor is made into a museum/arts and crafts type area, separate from the rest of the surrounding area which is meant to look like an authentic voyageur fort. It sucked because it's the only heated building there and it was around 25 below (C) today.
 
Most of the French people here (or francophones as we call them) actually speak English as well. It's pretty rare to meet an exclusively French-speaking Canadian in any major city other than recent immigrants from certain African nations.
 
@oz: You're clever, I'm sure you could learn another language! Although I don't know how much other languages are spoken in Australia? It's harder when you don't have anyone to practice with.
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Lonnehart at 5:57AM, Feb. 22, 2014
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Heh… I can understand most Tagalog, but not speak it effectively.  My siblings can speak it very well, but they all have accents despite being born and raised here.  Weird…

Great.  The Sims 4 is coming out this year.  I plan on using part of my incoming tax refund to reserve it.  Hopefully it won't require Windows 8, though as the article says it should be able run better on computers that aren't as powerful as is required to run The Sims 3.  And since it's a lot more advanced in its character creation I could plausibly create anyone I know in the game.

http://www.gamespot.com/articles/maxis-sims-4-will-run-better-on-lower-end-machines-than-sims-3/1100-6413584/

Luckily for any Sims I create I'm not a cruel person, even if that person is virtual.  And I've heard of players who love putting their Sim in a 1x1x1 room with no windows or doors and watch with glee as that Sim starves to death while suffering…  O_O
last edited on Feb. 22, 2014 5:58AM
ozoneocean at 9:57AM, Feb. 22, 2014
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Strange.
I loved games back in the ‘90s with Sega and stuff but since then I haven’t as much. When I got my first PC I did have some good ones, like Tomb Raider, Ultima 8, Dark Reign, Final Liberation, (awesome sountrack that I still listen to), Starcraft… but after going in bi for GTA Vice City, Battlefired 2, Portal, and Team Fortress 2 I haven't really felt much motivated to keep up with them. You always need bigger and better hardware ALL the time!
 
Well I did go in for the whole Mass Effect thing, but only after being convinced by Skoolmunkee, and that was a really low spec game with no crazy foccus on the latest greatest hardware to play, which was a very welcome suprise. Pitty about the shit ending, sort of soured me more on games.
 
Speaking of games, I bought my last big twoer PC years ago so that it'd be powerful enough for my graphic design stuff AND be a good games machine. All I use it for now is playin movies on my bi screens while I work on my laptop and cintiq, but it produces a lot of heat. So much so that on the hot days I'm havin at the moment I won't run it at all unless theres a cool breaze bowin and I've got the house open. In winter I have my office all sealed up and I use it to heat the room!
I'm SO happy with this slim little ultrabook PC, uses so much less energy! So much more effecient! And it's great to be able to work on hot days without baking yourself alive!
 
ozoneocean at 10:09AM, Feb. 22, 2014
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Repost this from Facebook because it's cooler than my brainfart about gaming:
 
I just finished doing a Quackcast interview with Jake Richmond of http://www.modestmedusa.com/
A pretty amazing webcomic success story. Starting out in Drunk Duck
with his comic in 2011 he's been able to quit his main day job and work
on his comic full time! He does some freelancing and teaching as well,
but his comic is his main source of income. That's awesome!
And this
wasn't by luck either, like that “being in the right place at the right
time” that a lot of the early big names leveraged most of their success
from, Jake got there though hard work and dedication to his readers.
A real webcomic inspiration!
 

 
Seriously, where Jame is at now is the goal that every webcomicer should be aiming for and his success shows that it IS acheiveable! - Only IF you can put in that work though. It's not easy.
 
Lonnehart at 11:44PM, Feb. 26, 2014
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I wonder if a story like this sounds too common….

In his younger days this man was a hard working teenager/young adult with a few friends.  On his 23rd birthday he was about be all set with his life.  He was about to have a great job, his boss's daughter was going out with him and it looked as if they were on the road to marriage.  Life was great for him.

Then, betrayed by a friend he was tricked into signing up for a mercenary unit and is dragged away the moment he realized what he had just done.  He spends nearly a decade fighting for his life, fullfilling contracts and eventually buying his way out of his contract.  All the while realizing that everything he was taken away from is no longer in his reach…

Now he's back to civilian life, ready to work as hard as he can on his new beginning using the wealth he amassed as a merc.  But this chance is taken from him again and he is once again in the fight of his life.  An evil dictator's armies have managed to wipe out the merc unit he was serving on, and vowed revenge against the man for being part of the unit that up until that point had thwarted that dictators attempt to sieze more power and land for himself…  So now the man has to deal with things like assassins, special stealth strike units, bounty hunters and old rival mercs seeking to settle the score with him thanks to the evil dictator sticking a huge bounty on his head…

You don't suppose this sort of thing can break a person, right?
last edited on Feb. 26, 2014 11:46PM
bravo1102 at 2:58AM, Feb. 27, 2014
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Sounds like the plot for Expendables III.  You talk to Sly Stallone about this yet?

And he finds the few survivors of his unit and a few enemies who respect him and they fight with tons of explosions and defeat the dictator.  There will be an old hand survivor mentor who will be found in a menial job because he was so so upset about everyone getting betrayed.  He will be convinced to come out of retirement for revenge.  Maybe he is the original boss who has been betrayed himself and this can also lead to the reignition of the love with the boss's daughter.  And she's in a forced loveless marriage maybe to the evil dictator but still loves the hero.  And there's the dark and exotic female double agent (or lady pirate or escaped princess in the premodern versions even played by Maureen O'Hara)

It's all been done in different genres from ancient sword and sandal to futuristic sci-fi.  I know I've seen similar with a guy who went into the French Foreign Legion in the 19th century as well as African merc units in the 1960-80s.  One great way to really put your mark on it would be to use a totally unexpected historical background.  The guy coming back from the Crusades?  The guy who went off to be pirate or the Irish rebel who joined the Wild Geese in the early 18th century the guy who went to Australia to make his fortune in the 19th Century, the guy who went West and comes back for the girl he left behind (now a big rancher until he loses it all…)  It's a western, it's a foriegn legion adventure story, it's a pirate story,  it's a space opera … throw in a kid with a map and it's Treasure Island, throw in Hercules and it's an Italian sword and sandal epic… or Expendables III
ozoneocean at 6:29AM, Feb. 27, 2014
(online)
posts: 24,789
joined: 1-2-2006
Yeah I was thinkin Stalone, Swarchenager, Chuck Norris, Clint Eastwood… pretty sure they all did versions of that story- very popular in the ‘80s.
The French foriegn legion story was probably Beau Gest? That’s a pretty famous one.
Thinking about Australia as you mentioned it- sounds like Quigly Downunder. Good film with Tom Selleck!
 
For the Crusades they sort of did that story with Robin Hood and Ivanhoe to name a couple, at least the Hollywood adaptions.
 
They've done one with Hercules now just recently and it's really awful… mixing up Roman hystory with Greek Myth in the worst way. Greek Demigod Hercules as a blond haired, blue eyed, clearn shaven soldier who becomes a GLADIATOR?????? WTF??????
That's like having a movie about George Washington where Washington's character is based on Oscar Wilde and played by Gerald Depardue.
History and myth by Hollywood writers who know nother about either.
This: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Em6Yw_EXNRA
 

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