I Wonder If My Brain Can Be Considered a Markov Chain
Apropos of nothing, the line "Jazz to Moonbase 2! A ginormous, weird-looking planet just showed up in the suburbs of Cybertron!" popped into my head this morning as I was shaving. For those of you under the age of 30, that is a line from the 1986 animated Transformers: The Movie, which I probably saw twenty times or more when I was in elementary school.
Thinking about that line, it occurred to me to wonder whether it might not be a little racist that Jazz's voice sounds black. And I wasn't sure whether the voice actor was black or not, and I didn't know if it would make it more racist or less if he were white. (It turns out that Jazz was voiced by Scatman Crothers, who was black, and who died shortly after the movie was released.)
But then, really, why did Jazz even have an accent? Why did Perceptor sound English? And, come to think of it, Shockwave and Starscream sounded vaguely English as well? What's up with that? All of them are robots from another planet. Why should any of them have regional accents?
That led me to think about Optimus Prime's voice, which made me wonder if Peter Cullen might not just have the best voice of all time. I could listen to that man read the phone book. I still get taken back to the excitement and amazement of childhood when I hear him say lines like "One shall stand, one shall fall, Megatron," or the "From days of long ago..." monologue from the opening of Voltron.
Thinking about voltron made me remember that live-action Voltron short that the AV Club linked back in October. I can't imagine that a movie like that could ever get made, or made well, but man, if it ever did I would watch the hell out of it.
I wondered, though, how a movie like that would go. Would King Zarkon really be the main antagonist? Because, really, Zarkon was a pretty ineffective villain. He pretty much had one go-to move--sending a Ro-Beast out to go destroy Voltron--and it always failed. Looking back, it's kind of baffling that he wasn't overthrown and someone more competent put in his place.
But, of course, none of the bad guy leaders in 80's cartoons really made much sense. Cobra Commander was supposed to be the leader of an international terrorist organization and he was a whiny loser. Even Destro, who wasn't as much of an out-and-out wiener, still made no sense as the head of a huge multinational corporation.
At this point I came back to myself enough to realize that I had spent nearly fifteen minutes pondering the minutia of some rather silly, extremely childish, and completely out-of-date pop culture items, and I had to marvel at just where my brain will go when I leave it unattended. But by then I was just about done with my shower and I had to start paying attention to real life again.
Just so you know, I am aware of the irony that this, of all things, would be the next thing I post after a rant about not being taken seriously as a mature adult. Maybe it's for the best that Juliette is the one to get the respect as a grown-up, after all.