Thursday, February 07, 2008
As I've been dragging my heels the past couple days artistically (guess I'm recharging) I decided to throw in a movie last night. I'd first heard about THE KING OF KONG last year and was intrigued. I love goofy/strange documentaries (AMERICAN MOVIE, CRUMB, etc.) and this one seemed right up my gamer alley. This is the tale of Steve Wiebe and his quest to become the world record holder at DONKEY KONG. This record has been unchanged since it was set back in '82 by Billy Mitchell. Now I'm a big fan of hockey hair, but Billy's luxuriant mane is truly something to behold. He looks like the kinda guy that still has a big bird decal on the hood of his automobile. (Sadly, he doesn't. He drives a mini-van.)
Billy still plays competitively and even sponsors other coin-op gamers. (The 82 year-old Q*bert playing woman is boss.) The sad thing is that Billy comes off as a complete arrogant turd. Five minutes into the movie and you're already rooting for Steve to knock this clown off his lofty hotwing-sauce-making perch. I won't spoil the ending, but it's just fascinating the underground and following these type of gamers have. The recordkeeping Twin Galaxies site that has their refs watching hundreds of VHS tapes a day checking out high scores sent in from around the world. Kinda makes me wanna get an old coin-op machine and grow a mullet. (I don't think it'll fly with Angie though. Maybe once we're in the new house...)
That said, if you're looking for a pleasant way to spend an hour and 20 minutes and you're a gamer, this might be up your alley. David vs. Goliath and his "system" at its best.