Today is Badlands National Park’s 45th “birthday”. What do you get 242,756 acres of sharply eroded buttes and mixed grass prairie for a gift? At some point we (and by we I mean some biologists, I did nothing) reintroduced the American polecat (aka the Black-footed ferret) to the park which seems like a good gift for a badland. And yet it would be a terrible gift to release a breeding population of polecats into most people’s houses. That’s the difference between us and badland when you get down to it.
This is the 45th anniversary of the park, but how old is the land itself? At what point did it become a badland and what was it before that? Based on the fossil record it was an ocean bed at some point, but did it go directly from ocean to badland? Did it go though an awkward “goth swamp” phase? Was there a tall grass prairie adulthood? When an ecosystem turns into another ecosystem is that a birth or is it more like a when your buddy gets a new job?
Arikara people lived there at some point. I did a project on them in an anthropology class in college but mostly what I remember about that is nothing about the Arikara, I remember that it was supposed to be a project you worked on with a partner and I was still too shy/cowardly at that point to ask anyone to be my partner so I did it alone. I remember that you were supposed to teach the class about what you had learned and I was ready to do that, although scared out of my mind to have to be the center of attention obviously, but the teacher never called on me to actually do it and gave me an A.
Everyone hates Marvel movies now, so much so that retroactively they were never popular in the first place. People like to complain about how much everyone complains about everything now but it is very impressive that when people turn on something their hatred is so powerful that it alters the past. That’s pretty cool when you think about it.
I don’t think Avengers Endgame is a very good movie but that’s okay because I wasn’t expecting it to be good. I knew going in that it was going to undo everything and everything was going to be great for all the characters happy ending blah blah so I wasn’t disappointed because I knew it was going to be meh at best.
I got to thinking “alright then mister smart guy, if you are so smart, which you are NOT, what would you have done instead?”
I don’t remember which movie, probably the first Dr. Strange, Dr. Strange is talking to the Ancient One about the time stone and she tells him that they need to protect it above all else because if someone bad gets it that would be bad. Dr. Strange asks her why they don’t just blow it up then so no one bad can get it and she tells him that if the time stone (or maybe any of the infinity stones I don’t remember) gets destroyed then something even worse would happen than a bad person getting it.
So the beginning of What If? Avengers Endgame Special Edition Now It’s Different Cut would be the same. Thanos is triumphant and to make sure no one can use the Infinity Stones to undo what he did he destroys them. Then nnstead of Thanos murder and a bunch of time travel redo everything bullshit instead what we do then is we advance the story, moving forward. I’m a genius!
Whatever the Ancient One was talking about starts going down and Thanos has to team up with the people that he didn’t murder to stop it. But what was she talking about?
Galactus maybe. I never watched any of the Fantastic Four movies but I know people were SUPER mad about the Silver Surfer one because “Galactus” was just a big cloud (like Parallax in the horrible Green Lantern movie?) instead of a giant purple man floating around in space. I find the idea of Galactus amusing but Galactus stories are never very interesting to me. But the fans want what they want.
The idea could be that Galactus knows about the Infinity Stones and knows that, mighty though he may be, someone wielding them could defeat him. So he steers clear of any place where Infinity Stone super shit is going on just to be safe. Thanos destroys the stones, and wing-bang-boom all bets are off and Galactus starts tucking into all the worlds we know and love like a plate of ribs. Thanos becomes aware of this Galactus planet Pac-Man action and has to convince Captain Marvel and Iron Man and whatnot to help him stop Galactus.
How do they do that? Good question. Endings are hard. The only Galactus defeating thing I remember from the comics was the Phoenix Force (Rachel Summers edition) which I think would be a bad idea to try and wedge into Ultra Mega Super Edition Endgame since they already failed at that story twice and mutants haven’t been introduced in the MCU so it would be super rushed.
My buddy Lobster Johnson suggested that it could be more focused on the reality stone. Such as, all the reality gems link different realities together, and as long as that’s true your reality is protected from THE VOID which is the reality eating monster from outside of time and space. Thanos destroying the reality gem made the MCU reality known and vulnerable to the void monster.
How do you defeat that? Multiverse crap maybe. Go steal the reality gem from another world, how about the Marvel Zombie universe because it’s already ruined so what do they need a reality gem for anyhow?
Multiverse stuff is creeping into the time travel zone as a story hook I can’t stand anymore. Which is ironic (?) because that’s what I’m doing with the 2 Ela story.
If/when I start a new 5th edition DND campaign I was looking at the Circle of the Moon druid and it seems neat and cool mechanically. Druids are always a hard sell for me thematically though. It doesn’t matter because neither of my game groups is super ROLE-PLAYERY and I could be a druid without having to worry about any story but I would like some justification for a druid to be doing anything other than burning down every city and killing all humans.
I as a player what I really want is just an option other than druids that can turn into an animal and for whatever reason D&D has been holding out on me for 40 years. There was a prestige class in 3rd edition where you could turn into animals but because it was a prestige class that meant you spent most of the campaign not doing the main thing you wanted to do. And then they introduced half-werewolf people that could sort of sometimes turn into animals but then you had to be a half-werewolf person.
I just want a character that can turn into a ram and butt people without having to be an ecoterrorist to do it, why won’t you give it to me D&D? Why?
In conclusion I watched the The Ox-Bow Incident the other day and it’s pretty good.