Friday, February 20, 2009

Reviewing the Reviewers

One of the regular features of the blog will be a recurring post called "Reviewing the Reviewers" where we take a little time for reflection and self-criticism, clarification, or immature flame wars. We're going to rotate the authorship of this column so you're not always getting one person's view of how the blog and the contributors are doing. In the future we hope to invite some of the bloggers and podcasters that we've reviewed to review our reviews! :-)

Since we obviously don't have any reviews up yet I thought it would be fun for me to give you what I think the other reviewers are going to be like from getting to know them personally. Then we'll be able to come back and look at this down the road and see if I was right or wrong:

Jim: I think Jim is a really smart guy who tries a little too hard to let everyone know he's intelligent and therefore sometimes achieves the exact opposite effect. Maybe he's just socially awkward, although that criticism may be based on having met him in person I'm not sure if you'll be able to detect that in his writing. UWoW is Jim's brainchild so I think he feels some pressure to make it work and so he's probably the most likely of the five of us to say something outrageous for the sake of saying it. While I'm not sure he'd say something outrageous that he didn't fully believe he does seem to argue an out-of-favor point of view just for the sake of it. It can be tiring. I think his reviews and columns will be pretty fair and witty. He's really funny in person.

Pete Pete: Pete Pete is definitely the #1 conspiracy theorist in the group, and by a fair margin too. Pete Pete is going to author a column called "Master of Transcribing" where he's going to pull a section of someone's podcast ramblings and dissect it for the hidden meaning behind the "actual words," as he says. When I first met him I sort of picked up an Andy Kaufman-type vibe and thought he was always "in character" and never willing to let you in on the joke. As I've gotten to know him a little better I now think he's pretty serious. He's the only one of the group that kind of scares me (sorry Pete Pete). I think his reviews and columns are going to be unintentionally funny.

Fred: Fred is sort of the wild card. I think Fred has been a little self-conscious of being seen in public with us since since he's more than double our ages. He's kind of like a soft-spoken guy but comes out of nowhere with a line that just really stings every once in a while. Like after we were finished with what I thought was a pretty decent meal at a diner just outside of town we all went outside afterward feeling pretty satisfied and Fred says: "Well, that was some of the worst shit I've ever eaten!" Just cracked us all up since he had said about five words the whole night and since we were saying how good the food was! I think Fred just doesn't care who he offends at this point in his life and he may end up being the most abrasive of the five of us in his reviews. He does have a grandfatherly quality though too so I suspect he'll really have to be riled up to give a podcast a bad review.

Toothy: Toothy has very definite opinions about what he likes and what he doesn't and pretty much thinks you're a moron if you disagree with him. He's also brilliantly smart and has apparently read more books already at age 18 than I could imagine reading in my life. He says he's not a chav but he wears like ripped cargo pants and dirty hoodies all the time, with a gold necklace on the outside. There is a quality about him that is very suspicious, like he is a con-man or something. I could imagine him being a grifter on the series Hustle. I'm not even positive his accent is real that's how badly Toothy has scrambled my brains in one month of knowing him. I think he's going to be outrageous most of the time and then surprisingly compassionate when the situation calls for it.

Since I'm not going to write about myself I asked Jim to "preview" me and here's what he said:

I think Melissa is going to be the Paula Abdul of the group and like everything she hears. Since she's a fairly new player to WoW she doesn't even know if the information she's getting from The Instance or WoW Insider or wherever is correct. Maybe she'll be the one to focus more on the style of the podcasts we cover rather than the content.

Ouch! But I guess fair after my honest critique of Jim. I hope I'm not going to just blindly accept whatever I hear and call it good - I do know how to use a computer and can check facts as well as anybody - but I'm not going to go out of my way to criticize someone for the sake of criticizing them. I think this will be a fun way to give a little something back to the community that has already made me feel so at home.

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