Friday, March 21, 2014

Growing Up Nerdy

"Nì'ul nerd advice ta mike si adam!" (*Translated to Na'vi)

I find myself getting into arguments with my friends about how powerful things can be and how they fight.  Recently my friend told me that the Na'vi would totally beat the Wookies in a fight, I think he's on drugs.  Do you have these arguments?


Mike: I know I’ve told this story before, but it fits this question. Adam and I have a friend named Nick. Nick is a Trekkie. Like, maybe-knows-too-much-about-Star-Trek level Trekkie. He also loves to argue. Combine those two characteristics and it leads us to the most infamous nerd argument our group of friends have had with one another.

To be clear, it wasn’t much of an argument. Nick claims that Data (from Star Trek: Next Generation, or TNG to you uber-nerds) would defeat Darth Vader in a fight. You read that correctly. Darth Vader. According to Nick, “Vader’s Jedi mind trick shit wouldn’t work on Data.” Never mind the fact that Vader would cut his android ass down with a light saber before Data could say Bantha. Despite the overwhelming evidence we presented to Nick that Darth Vader would destroy Data in a fight, Nick wouldn’t budge.

Fast forward to a Wizard World Chicago a few years back. Brent Spiner, Data himself, was there all weekend for a panel and signings. Adam and I thought it’d be funny to get Mr. Spiner’s autograph for Nick and maybe get him to write something about our argument on a glossy 8x10. We approached Mr. Spiner, handed him the Data headshot and told him about our crazy-ass friend that actually thought he could beat up Lord Vader. Mr. Spiner looked at us and calmly said, “Your friend Nick is right.”

Hard to argue with Data.
Adam: Brent Spiner is an awesome guy.

If you ever have a spare hour on a Wednesday evening just find your way to your local comic book store. You see, Wednesdays are new comic days, and nerds travel from all over to gather weekly and discuss imaginary worlds. If you see a group of them, just walk near them, pick a moment and say something crazy like “Frodo is way cooler than Gandalf.” Or “I’d rather be a zombie than a vampire.” Sit back and watch the bedlam you’ve just created. Ten dollars says every one of you who just read those two statements above already have an answer in your head. It’s fun to argue about that shit because there are no consequences to it. I LOVE movies, I LOVE comics, and if I can spend a few minutes talking about it with someone even if it is a friendly argument I’m game. The best part is there isn’t any winners or losers, there isn’t a definitive answer….except with the Na’vi vs. the Wookies. The Wookies would totally beat the Na’vi’s asses. What is Neytiri going to do, shoot fucking arrows while Chewy’s got his bowcaster? Please, this fight would be over before it even began.

Dear G.U.N.,
I can’t believe you are coming up on your 15th anniversary of writing the column! Congrats to both of you! I'm going to my first ComiCon and was thinking about dressing up in Cosplay. Are there any rules or suggestions I need before doing this?

-Alex in Alberta

Adam: First, Alex, are you a girl Alex or a boy Alex? Because there are different rules for women and men.

I’ll start out with girl advice. The toughest part of cosplay if you’re a girl is the perverts. They won’t come off as perverts -- they are great at hiding it and will seem like perfectly nice guys -- but these pervy individuals will constantly ask you if they can get a picture, and believe me, some of the photo set-ups are pretty sophisticated. I’ve seen guys hold giant poles with flashes on them and cameras attached to elaborate devices for "easy use." They turn creepy into an art form.

Now I don’t want to sound accusatory -- heck, I’ve taken a few pictures of some great cosplay -- but no doubt a lot of these dudes are looking for masturbation material. Some girls are okay with this. If you can deal with the creepers out there that are going to stop you every five minutes to take your picture (or not stop you and just take an ass shot as you're looking through a bin of loose Lego mini-figs), get a push-up bra and rock out your Power-Girl costume ladies.

Guys, just make sure that you’re not too bulky. There is a very fine line in cosplay between “awesome costume” and “WTF.” Sometimes you’ll get amazing costumes on which somebody clearly spent a lot of time and money and while it looks great, it is just too damned big. At C2E2 a few years ago, this guy had a really awesome Godzilla costume. It was made of foam with a wicked paint job. Unfortunately, he couldn’t actually ENJOY the convention because his suit was so damned big that he couldn’t walk through the aisles.

There is, of course, the other direction, which is “too tight” or “not enough.” I get it. Superman is a drawing, and there is no way that most of us will ever look that good, but I’ve seen some remarkable people trying to wear spandex. Let’s be clear: I’m not criticizing people’s weight or even saying you shouldn’t wear a costume if you’d like, just keep in mind that spandex leaves VERY little to the imagination.

The most recent example of this is the “Slave Leia” craze. Years ago, if you wanted a Slave Leia costume, you needed to make your own. Now you can just buy one on the internet in a few minutes. This past year at the San Diego ComiCon, I witnessed a photograph being taken with about 20 Slave Leias in it. This is a fantasy straight out of a junior high wet dream. However, one woman has ruined these sights for nerds around the world. That woman is Adrianne Curry.
After winning America’s Next Top Model: Cycle 1 and starring on the short-lived My Fair Brady, Curry took to the Con circuit. It didn’t take her long to start with the cosplay, and good lord is she good at it. Listen, ladies. She’s a model, and I’ve seen her in a multitude of costumes from a “Sexy Imperial Trooper” to LeeLoo from The Fifth Element and capping it off with the best Slave Leia I’d ever seen --that is until I saw Olivia Munn’s Slave Leia. So ladies, just give it up. Retire the Slave Leia costume. It’s over.

Except you Olivia. You can wear that any time you like.
Mike: The only thing I’d add is that you should keep in mind there are a lot of little kids at cons. If you’re dressed like Spider-Man or Iron Man, be mindful that they might think you’re actually the super-hero you’re dressed as. Take a picture with them if they want one. Play the part. You’ll make their day.

On the flipside of that coin, if you’re dressed like a zombie or something (I don’t care what kind of convention it is – someone will be dressed like a zombie), also keep in mind that there are kids all over. I’m not saying to not dress up in your scary or villain costume, but if you notice you’re freaking some child out, maybe back the fuck off. You don’t ALWAYS have to be in character.

I recently found out that my girlfriend of over a year doesn’t like Star Wars! I know it shouldn’t bother me but I can’t sleep, can’t eat, I’m a mess. What should I do?

-Rolling Solo in Soho

Adam: Wha? Have you told her to go back to Russia? It could be that she is just using you for a green card like that French guy did to Andie MacDowell in that movie (I don't remember what it was called). Maybe your girlfriend is really a French dude? My guess is she’s an alien from another planet. It is possible that you have uncovered a plot by an alien race that is trying to take over the planet. You have two options:
1) Break up with her.
2) Kill her.
That might seem a bit extreme, but when you are talking about people who don’t like Star Wars it's usually the first signs of a deeper rooted problem or ulterior motive. If you go with option 2, tread carefully. These aliens can only be seen if you wear these special sunglasses, and to the best of my knowledge, they’ve destroyed all of these glasses.
Mike: I don’t want to call you out, Adam, but you love Star Trek, right? And how does your wife feel about Trek?

Adam: Listen, my wife doesn’t like Star Trek and it puts a big strain on our relationship. My heart breaks every time she walks in and I’m walking Trek and she has this look of disgust like she just caught me watching porn. There is a BIG difference though from being a Star TREK fan and being a Star WARS fan. I’ll be the first to admit that Trek is not for everyone, but Star Wars is as American as apple pie. Star Trek is more like peach pie; sure, it’s not as popular or universal as apple pie but peach pie has its fans. Right? Right?

Hi Daddy. Can everyone wish me a happy birthday today?
- Evelyn Stormborn

Mike: Today is my daughter’s sixth birthday. Wish her a happy birthday, F-Heads.

Adam: What the hell is this? Why is this in our damned column? At what point did you just stop giving a shit and decide you’re going to…screw it…Happy birthday Evie.


  1. Alright, this one's easy.

    Darth Vader.
    Yes to slave Leia.
    No to Star Wars. (sorry.)
    Yes to Star Trek.
    No to peach pie. (sorry.)
    Happy birthday Evie.


    (PS. Love the column!)

    1. First off, thank you. Second, it's clear you are an Alien. I came here to kick ass and chew bubblegum... and I'm all out of bubblegum.

  2. Ah, Slave-Leia. Every time I watch Return of the Jedi I get angry when Luke enters Jabba's palace, because the filmmakers missed a very obvious moment that would have been awesome. See, Luke hasn't seen Leia in her slave-girl outfit. So he comes into Jabba's throne room, and...doesn't react to her at all. Imagine instead if he'd come in, all Jedi-cool, to confront Jabba. He momentarily glances down, looks back up, and then HOLY FUCK THAT'S LEIA??!? Then we'd get a quick cut to Leia giving him a "don't even start with me" look, and you've got a classic moment that would have rocked the theatre back in 83.

    The Wookies would obviously win, of course.

    1. That's a funny idea but aren't there enough uncomfortably incestuous moments in those movies? I gag a little every time I see Luke lean back and savour the moment after Leia kisses him in Empire. You know he jerked to that later on.

  3. There must be something wrong (right?) with me that I'm sitting here trying to come up with a scenario where Data beats Darth Vader but it all comes back to DV either slicing him in half with his lightsaber or just smashing him to pieces against a wall. Sorry Spiner, it pains me to disagree with you, but I just can't see it.

    Adam - sounds like your wife would be LESS disappointed if she caught you watching porn. I feel your pain of marital discord though - my wife likes the @#$%ing PREQUEL TRILOGY better than the originals, though to be fair she saw those first (only forgiveable because it was my fault - figured she might as well watch them in order the first time). Should I kill her?

    Happy Birthday Evie! May you stay forever young (like your old man)!

    1. You know, that's tough. I think you should let her live, she at least like Star Wars, even though it's the lesser of the two.

  4. is your daughter's middle name really Stormborn? I really hope it is. and happy birthday!

    1. It is not, but if it was up to him, he'd change it tomorrow. I'm pretty sure he'd change it to Evelyn Stormborn-Amy-Pond-Tauriel-Leia-Tardis.

    2. You forgot Rose Tyler Arwyn, Adam.

  5. I wouldn't mind women retiring the Slave Leia costume. NOBODY can do it as well as Olivia Munn. Nobody.

    Also, happy birthday, Evie!