Its not a phobia, its a completely rational response

If science fiction has taught us nothing else it’s that when the sentient machine rise they will attempt to build machines that look like us, to infiltrate and destroy humanity. Think ‘The Terminator’, or Phillip K Dick’s ‘2nd Variety’ and ‘Blade Runner’.

These constructed pseudo-humans creep me out. In the recently re-imaged Battlestar Galactica 2nd only to the most appalling ending to a beloved series I have every seen. (If you want a detailed reading as to why this comprehensively failed for me click here.) But a close second was the skin-job cyclons that looked like us.

And no I don’t care how hot they look, they are evil and they have a plan.

And as disturbing as these are – it’s those models between the T-800 of the Terminator and these almost flawless replicas that make my mind go screaming.

Anyone remember a movie called ‘Final Fantasy: The Spirits within’? It was based on the video game of the same name and came out in 2001 . All CGI but trying to look like humans.


The screaming in your head when you see these figures is caused by The Uncanny Valley. This hypothesis is when robots and other facsimiles of humans look and act almost, but not entirely, like actual humans, it causes a response of revulsion among human observers. The “valley” in question is a dip in a proposed graph of the positivity of human reaction as a function of a robot’s lifelikeness.

Any scientific graph is improved with Zombie


So my feelings of revulsion at the idea of Honeydolls and those species traitors that use them – perfectly reasonable.

I am also pleased to see our primate brethren also share these excellent instincts. An article in New Scientist claims

Macaques are creeped out by cyber-selves


Asif Ghazanfar and Shawn Steckenfinger of Princeton University wondered how five macaques would respond to monkey avatars. They found that the monkeys spent less time looking at the most realistic avatars – which they say suggests they dislike them (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

So I say – down with these monsters of our own creation, grab your pitchforks and follow.
Whose with me?


Vegemite is described on the Kraft food website as a “tasty spreadable paste made from brewer’s yeast”.In Terry Pratchett’s ‘The Last Continent’ it is better described as a “salty-tasting beery brown gunk.”

It’s a thick, black paste that will provide a valuable source of vitamin B in the post-apocalyptic landscape because:
every home has a jar;
it doesn’t need to be refrigeration;
I suspect it is largely immune to radiation; and
it is so salty that only extremophiles can survive in it so it will never go off.

The name was chosen in a national contest in 1923 and somehow it has so insinuated itself into the Australian cultural landscape that an ability to eat it on toast was considered a defining characteristic of being Australian, even though it is now owned by the big American food giant KRAFT.

Given such iconic status you’d think you’d be more careful how you treat the brand. Sinc
July this year Kraft sent out three million jars with the label “name me” and asked the public to send in their idea for the new Vegemite & cream cheese mix mmm YECH. 50,000 entries were received. A website posted the names and people began to generate the sort on-line buzz that suggested KRAFT had understood the new media and social networking.

and then KRAFT decided that the name would be

No really

the public went ballistic.

So in an effort to stem the firebombings they have now gone with VEGEMITE CHEESYBITE.

However with the internet, like Cuthulu do not call up that which you cannot put down.

Which has led to the following.

My spoiler free review of ZOMBIELAND

It’s AWESOME, go see it.

In fact is its so AWESOME for the next month I’ll be attempting to use Woody Harrelson’s character’s catch phrase “Time to nut up, or shut up” as often as I can when I post.

For those overseas readers who think Australia is some tropical paradise I would reveal as well as having some of the most venomous spiders, snakes and jellyfish in the world we also have to wait until 3 DECEMBER to see this excellent training film.

In other Zombie media news the boys and girls over at Dreadcentral report that AMC is to get one of my favorite we_don’t_spare_on_the_despair directors Frank Darabont of the movie ‘The Mist’ to write and produce a screen version of Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead. A excellent comix about life after the Zombie Apocalypse. It’s not just the zombie slayage I come for but for the conversations, like this one.

But if you though McCarthy’s The Road was bleak.. then this may not be for you.