Wednesday, 30 October 2013

What is MTV2 Canada anyway?

I won't judge MTV2 in the US. I've never watched it, so I don't know what it's about. All I know is it's supposed to be a separate brand, MTV in name only. So instead I'm looking at the canadian version, I remember watching it back when I was elementary school but I haven't watched it since...damn cable packaging.

According to their website MTV2 is "the ultimate destination for Canada's 12-24s. featuring an eclectic roster of crazy over-the-top exclusive programming packed full of attitude. MTV2 airs and covers hit movies, comedy, extreme sports, live music and videos, animation, and gaming" Wow! I can't believe how one little page can pack so much bullshit.
Let's try this again, this time with their facebook page. "MTV2 is a lifestyle and general entertainment channel aimed at youth and teen audiences, airing a mix of music video programs, drama, comedies, talk shows and more." That is only slightly accurate.

Going by the schedule alone, MTV2 looks...umm? I'll let you judge. Here's a list of programs currently being broadcast regularly, as of October 2013. Because I don't think even Wikipedia gives a crap about this channel:
Breaker High
True Life
Hollywood Heights
Silent Library
Rob Dyrdek's Fantasy Factory

Well, what do you think? Me personally, I think MTV2 is in need of the same treatment Much, M3 and MTV has received this past month. The archived MTV programming is forgiven but otherwise, MTV2 looks like a dump. According to the 2013 CRTC Communications Monitoring Report, 869 people are watching MTV2, compared to the 2,452 subscribers G4 has. G4 Canada, a network literally in the same boat, is still more successful in subscribers, revenue and PBIT. Good thing Rogers is charging around $3 for MTV2 Canada, cause that's literally how much the brand is worth.

Yep, MTV2 needs the M3 treatment. It needs a reskin, a refresh, a rebrand. Fast! Are you pondering what I'm pondering?

The Bell-Astral takeover: Aftermath

I've been so distracted with G4 Canada and the MuchMTV Group, I almost forgot about another thing that's been on my mind: The Bell-Astral takeover.

To the dismay of watchdogs everywhere, Astral Media has been bought out by Bell Media thanks to the agreement that Astral would put some of it's specialty services - Disney XD, Disney Junior French, MusiMax and MusiquePlus - as well as it's "other" pay service, Family Channel, and it's multiplex, Disney Juinor English, up for auction. They also sold their stakes to some of their other properties, inlcuding the Teletoon channels and Cartoon Network Canada. We know that Corus, who shared the Teletoon channels with Astral, will buy their stakes in their services but my question is: what's gonna happen to the Astral Five? ...Don't ask me how I came up with the name.

Family, Junior, and XD are all homes to programming from Disney, who's brand needs no introduction. Who ever buys these channels will become very, very, VERY rich. As for the french music channels, I'm personally hoping Blue Ant Media will buy them.

Why not? AUX is succeeding Much as Canada's new destination for fresh new music but it's only available in english. When BAM tried to apply for a french version of AUX, they were rejected by the CRTC because it would be competitive with MusiMax and MusiquePlus. I'm calling fowl play on this one because MusiquePlus, in terms of decay, is just as bad, if not worse, than Much. Where Much is airing a LOT more music programming now then they did in recent years, MusiquePlus relies heavily on reality shows, most of which have nothing to do with music (Sound familiar?). So, they allowed BAM to launch AUX as a specialty service in-spite of Much but they can't get a french counterpart because of MusiquePlus? Bullshit.
BAM buying MusiMax and MusiquePlus and aligning them with the AUX brand as it's french counterpart is a no brainer. Why try to create when, you can just take? It's also a nice way to stick it to the CRTC for all the trouble they've been causing this past year.

Meanwhile, once Corus buys out Astral's stakes in the Teletoon channels and Cartoon Network, they will become 100% sister to YTV, ABC Spark, and Treehouse. Corus will have 2/3 of the big three children brands in America - Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon - on speed dial. Now would be a good time to figure out what's in store for Canada's animation station. Maybe The Haunting Hour will hop from Teletoon to YTV, after all, it's live-action and it's not getting much promotion either. Maybe if it had debuted around the same time as My Babysitter's a Vampire and Mudpit...?

Anyway, change is coming. I just hope the changes will be for the best. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to back to obsessing over G4.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Why I don't like American-Branded channels in Canada

I don't hate amercian-branded channels, they provide more programming that we otherwise can't get here in Canada. As long as it's launched on it's own channel space or at least replacing a lesser-known channel; Drive-In Classics becoming Sundance Channel or Showcase Diva re-branding as Lifetime. By the way, does anyone remember "Star!"? No? I didn't think so.
I don't hate amercian-branded channels, but I don't like them either.

It's for the same reasons as I hate Canadian knockoff shows. If I want to see Storage Wars, I'll watch Storage Wars. I don't have time for some watered down clone that's Storage Wars in name only. You ever see one of those iPod clones, the ones that look like iPods but are really just cheap MP4 players designed to trick parents? That's the kind of show Wipeout Canada is. That fact that they're called "MP4 Players" even though they don't even play MP4 files just illustrates how shameless these things are. Yes, I know it's supposed to be a play on "MP3 Players", but was there anything wrong with calling them "Video MP3 Players?" I guess not, since Slice's "Lost and Sold" or YTV's "Splatalot" would be some of the better received "Video MP3 Players" around.

Take a look at IFC Canada. In it's current format, it would have been more of an equivalent to AMC and FX: uncut movies by day, great TV series at night. Instead, it's just a generic movie channel with series that have already aired in Canada. Meanwhile IFC in the US has expanded it's lineup to include cult shows and indy shows. IFC Canada doesn't even air any IFC original series; much of it has instead aired on other networks..., like Much.

Then you have OWN Canada. Originally known as the Canadian Learning Channel, when bought out by Corus, they changed their name to Viva and shifted formats to become an "educational" lifestyle network for women. From the get go, Corus was biting off more than they can chew when they attempted to rebrand Viva as a canadian version of the Oprah Winfrey Network and further reduce the amount of actual educational programming. Meanwhile the actual OWN broadcast shows from documentaries about failing schools to entertainment programming, like The Haves and Have Nots which, of course, won't be airing anytime soon in Canada...because it's a black show.

You can bet someone at G4 Canada will look at OWN Canada with envy since Corus is allowed to put on their facade but Rogers Media can't. Unlike OWN Canada & IFC Canada - and much like the Canadian Bravo & OLN - what used to be known as "Tech TV Canada" maintained it's format till the very end; tech shows, gaming shows, anime, and male-skewing shows. But where Bravo and OLN became their own independent brands from their americian counterparts, G4 had to drop their entertainment programming go back to being a tech lifestyle service. That's fine, but it's certainly not what G4 in the US is or was supposed to be.

The issue here is, rather than building their own brand, these network would rather take the name of a popular americian network that does something similar and slap it on their network instead. Say what you want about Twist TV (*cough*realityshowdumpingground*cough*), but at least they aren't putting on a facade; they know what they are and what they do and they do things their way.

There's nothing wrong with just being original.

Someone in London isn't too happy about BET.

We in London love BET but we don't seem to have the same programmes as America. We do understand that not all of your programmes are available in the UK. But we need more variety as we now get constant repeats. Can we please have a regular change of programmes."

....Better question; can you please stop vandalizing Wikipedia with your bullshit? There's a reason why FORUMS exist.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Update: October 2013

I'm just a few lines away from finishing episode 9 of The Abridged Knights of Brawl. I should have it done this weekend, but I make no promises. I've already talked about that "leftover parody project from the past summer that I'd like to get back to" in my last update. Once I've finished episode 9, I'll get right to work on that.

Meanwhile, I've started, and forgot to finish, a BTS video for my SSB64 machinima. Until I've finished that, I won't be able to work on Reycralibur. Partly because my hard drive is overbloated enough, partly because I'm losing interest in the whole thing. Don't worry, I'm not cancelling Reycralibur, I've come too far to pull the plug now.

Lastly, Ringside WILL return soon, I just need to "find my flow." However, between the tutorial, TAKOB, and that "leftover parody", I don't think I can bring back Ringside or continue Reycralibur until I've finished up the little things first. In short, all of the above - except Reycralibur - will be released before the end of the year.

Lights Out.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Bound for Glory 2013 - 30 second review

As much as I enjoyed seeing history made (the first time since BFG 2006 that all titles changed in one night) and AJ getting his revenge, this years BFG was a bit lackluster.
Nearly all the titles were practically stolen, we still don't know who the hell Bully was talking too before the match - OR DO WE? - and don't get me started on EC3's debut.
Roode/Angle was easily match of the night.
Sue me.

Friday, 11 October 2013

(Showcase) Action rant

I'm sure this rant was long overdue. My issue with Action is the name; yeah, I'm going there.

Plain and simple, it's a generic name. That fact that I had to use "Showcase Action" in the title to make sure people knew I was talking about the channel, even though it's no longer advertised as a spinoff of Showcase, and not the action tv genre is proof that the name just doesn't distinguish it enough.
The name also doesn't do "Action's" programming lineup justice. Action broadcasts a mix between scripted action programming and "high-stakes" reality shows like Cops, Hardcore Pawn, and Impractical Jokers - because nothing says "Action" like watching a guy trying to find his car keys in a pile of elephant poop.

This isn't just another movie channel anymore, it's a channel that can stand out from it's former sister stations and stand with other canadian-branded channels. That's why Action remained as is while Showcase Diva got replaced with a canadian version of Lifetime. It's one of the highest-rated specialty services in Canada, mostly because it targets men; Men who love car chases, explosions, and guys trying to fine their car keys in piles of elephant poop.

It's been four years, it REALLY needs a brand overhaul. Nothing drastic, just enough to make sure that when I bring up "Action", I'm not talking about the french tv channel that has nothing to do with Action. ...No, the channel not the genre!

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Project 64: Hacks for Super Smash Bros 64 []

A collection of codes for Super Smash Bros by
To install, move the .cht file to the Project64 folder. Be sure to backup or move the pre-existing .cht file before hand.

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

What if FXX Canada replaced G4 Canada?

What if FXX Canada replaced G4 Canada? A comedy network, no pun intended, replacing a tech-centric network? Maybe, after all, OWN in Canada replaced Viva; a women's lifestyle channel which itself replaced the Canadian Learning Channel - hence the reason why the CRTC is grilling Corus for not airing enough educational programming. No, I think Rogers Media would be better off just shutting down G4 altogether, that's what Comcast is doing with the american version apparently "according to a public statement filed by Cablevision to the Connecticut Department of Public Utility Control"  [Wikipedia]

Oh, right, I need to explain what I'm talking about. "Rogers has tentatively planned a January 2014 launch of FXX Canada, a Canadian version of FXX, the spinoff channel to which several FX comedy series moved in the U.S. in September 2013." [Wikipedia] Meanwhile, the latest press releases from RM don't even acknowledge the channel's existence, yet Bio Canada always gets a brief mention. Both EP and Reviews on the Run are now airing in syndication on FX Canada and commercials for OLN, FXC, and even The Shopping Channel air across all Rogers Media properties. If that isn't a sign that G4's days are numbered, in Canada and the United States, I don't know what is.

On the note of "G4 Prime" shutting down, after hearing all the hassle NBCUniversal had trying to shut it down the first time (back when it was supposed to be rebranded as the Esquire Network), I think Discovery Communications would have more luck rebranding The Hub Network as a new incarnation of Discovery Kids - if that really was the case and their Wikipedia page wasn't vandalized by some DK fanboy who apparently has some grudge against The Hub...or bronies....

Saturday, 5 October 2013

The REAL problem with Channel Drift in 5 minutes

Network decay doesn't kill channels, people kill channels. Had Cartoon Network focused on live-action shows that had SOMETHING to do with animation (Out of Jimmy's Head, Level Up) CN Real wouldn't have been as much of a cancer as the CN babies-I mean, fanboys have made it out to be.

a successful Channel drift is when a network finds what works, gets rid of what doesn't, and then expands their programming to better represent what the're supposed to broadcast. A&E did this by dropping biographies in favor of documentaries and drama shows and AMC did this by focusing more on original programming akin to something seen on pay tv. Because of decay, channels that no one was supposed to give a crap about - such as TLC and Court TV - are now drawing ratings akin to the big four; that's decay done right.

The REAL problem with drift is that networks use decay as an excuse not to improve their channel but to sabotage it. G4 adding non-gaming or tech programming, History adding non-historical programming, Syfy showing professional wrestling, I need to bring up Cartoon Network again? They use drift as an excuse to broadcast shows their not supposed to in order to compete with networks they're not supposed to compete against; ...Again, I'm looking at Cartoon Network.

To me, they just want to broadcast the same shows as the network their trying to compete against. Sure, they're beating them in ratings, but now their channel is just like their competitor. There's no diversity and there's no competition because everyone is trying to get high schoolers and brain-damaged teenage girls to watch the same crappy programming we've already seen on other networks. ...Sorry, I was thinking about It's a Laugh Productions.

The only channels that have the excuse to do whatever they like when it comes to decay are the likes of music channels (Much, M3, MTV) and movie channels (IFC, AMC) because nobody watches either of them anymore. But my point is, if I want to watch basketball, I'll watch a sports channel...not IFC.

Too much family shows? [CMT Canada, ABC Spark, YTV]

You know, I really need to bring this up. With Family Channel broadcasting more Disney Channel-fair, they've become less of a "family" channel and more of a tween girl channel. So, with Bionix losing ratings, YTV began to pick up the slack and air more family-oriented programming along with the kid shows the're supposed to be broadcasting. The result, YTV began airing shows like Everybody Hates Chris, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, America's Funniest Home Videos, Just for Laughs Gags, and Wipeout.
Meanwhile, CMT Canada began to transition to become more of a family channel themselves (Relax, they still play country music-related shows, more so than Much does with music in-general, and it's not like Country Music Television [the US version] itself was doing better). See, the problem here is redundancy; it's the reason why CMT in the US still focuses on country music while TNN became the male-oriented Spike TV.

So, you'd think that since Corus, Shaw Media, and the Disney-ABC Television Group teamed up to bring ABC Family to Canada, in the form of the teenage-oriented "ABC Spark," we'd finally get some kind of ground rules for which channel broadcasts what: Spark handles teen programming,  CMT handles family-programming, and YTV handles kids programming. Right? Wrong. "Instead, let's have ABC Spark AND CMT air Wipeout, AFV and JFL Gags! Let's stuff CMT's non-video block schedule with reality shows like Fear Factor and Undercover Boss Canada and air shows about food and pets during the weekends. While we're at it, let's show reruns of Wipeout Canada on CMT and YTV. Sure, it's unoriginal, only ran for 11 episodes and won't be renewed for a second season, but who cares?!"

...Yeah, so it's mostly CMT Canada at fault. To be fair, aside from original programming, they have nothing to broadcast in the evenings...except more music videos. They don't broadcast the same "southern-flavored" shows that the american CMT does, their new animated series - Bounty Hunters - airs on The Comedy Network. Here's an idea how about moving all the syndicated programming, save for AMV, to CMT Canada and let them handle the family programming so YTV and Spark can go back to targeting kids and teens, respectively. I don't mind a crossover audience as long as the channels have programming that helps them to stand out on their own - something that CMT Canada, beyond music-related programming, doesn't have.

P.S For the love of dog, if you're not gonna renew Wipeout Canada, then put it on DVD and take it off the air! The only thing worse than a knockoff reality show is a knockoff reality show that's just being used for filler.