Tag Archives: The Wizard of Oz

Fallout Commercialism: Breaking News Edition

In Bethesda’s Fallout games there is only one source of news available to the survivors of the nuclear fallout, and that is Galaxy News Radio.  However, that wasn’t the case before the Great War.  In addition to GNR, the Capitol Post was a major part of the pre-war landscape.  Hubris Comics, although they didn’t deal with news, provided another print medium that entertained many kids and adults alike back before the nuclear fallout.

galaxy news radio

Galaxy News Radio, run by the always charismatic Three Dog, is the only surviving remnant of the Galaxy News Network.  (Although, this may no longer be the case.  The Fallout 4 reveal trailer contains a billboard advertising GNN.  Perhaps we will have the opportunity to explore more of GNN.)  The network was the leading source of news, especially in Washington D.C., the location where the network’s radio division is located.  Any attentive listener will realize that a lot of the pre-war advertisements can still be heard playing on the air, most likely due to pre-programmed reasons.

GNR's Three Dog
GNR’s Three Dog
Interplay's Logo
Interplay’s Logo

Now, lets get into some of the real life inspirations that provide the foundation for the radio station.  We’ll start with the studio Interplay’s logo, which is actually inspired by the Galaxy News logo.  In the original Fallout, the logo appeared in the introductory scenes and due to the series’ popularity, Interplay, the publishers of the original Fallout, adopted the logo as inspiration for their own.

The Logo from Fallout's Intro
The Logo from Fallout’s Intro

Almost everybody that I talk to loves Three Dog, the charming radio DJ that graces the Capitol Wasteland with his wit, humor, and most importantly, a good taste of classic music from the era.  The character, voiced by Erik Dellums, shares the name with the character Dog 3, who is actually played by Dellums himself in the

Erik Dellums
Erik Dellums

movie She’s Gotta Have It.  Dellums had a pretty big say in Three Dog’s character development, including his signature howls.  As you would imagine, a lot of the things that Three Dogs rambles on about on the radio sprout from a variety of pop culture.  Lets break down the most notable ones:

“You can’t stop the signal.” – This line is muttered after fixing the atenna that needs worked on at the Washington Monument.  The line is actually borrowed from the 2005 movie Serenity, directed by Joss Whedon.

Joss Whedon's Serenity
Joss Whedon’s Serenity

“Trouble, oh we got trouble, right here in Rivet City!” – This line is more of a deep cut.  Anybody who is familiar with the 1950’s musical The Music Man will recognize this line though.  The musical takes place in River City, and one of the characters says the line, “Trouble, oh we got trouble, right here in River City!”

The film adaptation of The Music Man
The film adaptation of The Music Man

“Your friendly neighborhood disc jockey” – Three Dog sounds a lot like Spider-Man when he howls out this line.  The line references the 1960’s cartoon where Spider-Man is referred to as “Your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.”

1960's Spider-Man
1960’s Spider-Man

Ding, dong, the Presidential asshole is dead!” – This one comes from the film classic Wizard of Oz.  In the movie, we hear the cleaner “Ding, dong, the witch is dead!”  It is clear that Three Dog has watched his fair share of movies at this point.

The dead witch from the Wizard of Oz
The dead witch from the Wizard of Oz

“One small step backwards for man, one giant evolutionary rewind for mankind.” – This one will be instantly familiar to any connoisseur of American history.  This is a reference to a quote from Neil Armstrong when he took his first step on the moon.  The only difference is that he was taking a step forward instead of backward.

The Green Hornet
The Green Hornet

Finally, one of the featured radio shows that plays on the GNR is The Adventures of Herbert “Daring” Dashwood.  The show tells the wacky stories of Herbert Dashwood and his sidekick Argyle.  The show is actually a reference to the 1930’s radio program The Green Hornet, which features vigilante Britt Reid fighting crime with his trusted sidekick Kato.  The radio show’s story lines also contain references to the original broadcast as well.

capitol post

Before the war, most citizens of Washington D.C. received their news from the Capitol Post, which had its offices in L’Enfant Plaza.  The company doesn’t take a prominent place in the Fallout games, but in Fallout 3 players can read some of the articles published in the paper at the paper’s HQ.  You can read up on the fictional news stories about the disbanding of the United Nations or the Pint-Sized Slasher, a super weapon that was being developed by the US Government.

The Washington Post's Logo
The Washington Post’s Logo

The newspaper is an obvious reference to Washington D.C.’s actual newspaper, the Washington Post.  One of the interesting things about the Capitol Post is the price of the paper, which was set at a whopping fifty six dollars, obviously due to inflation from the war.

A loading screen from Fallout 3, featuring the Capitol Post
A loading screen from Fallout 3, featuring the Capitol Post

hubris comics

Finally, lets talk about Hubris Comics, the Marvel Comics of the pre-war era.  Branching from Hubris Publishing, the company has been making comics ever since 2021.  The company had a part in war propaganda, similarly to Marvel Comics who produced a number of comics featuring propaganda about World War II and the Cold War.

Loading screen featuring some of Hubris Comic's properties
Loading screen featuring some of Hubris Comic’s properties
Lair of the Ice Worm
Lair of the Ice Worm

Probably the most recognizable comic that the company has put out is Grognak the Barbarian.  The series, which contained fourteen issues is an obvious reference to the real life comic Conan the Barbarian.  The references don’t stop there though.  The cover to “In the Lair of the Virgin Eater” bears resemblance to Conan’s “Lair of the Ice Worm.”

In the Lair of the Virgin Eater
In the Lair of the Virgin Eater

Another popular comic and television series from the company was The Adventures of Captain Cosmos.  The TV show that accompanies the comic aired on Thursdays at 8:00 prior to the war, which is strikingly similar to Star Trek, which aired during the same time slot during it’s first two seasons.

Ad for Captain Cosmos
Ad for Captain Cosmos

Oz the Great and Powerful Review

oz-the-great-and-powerful-movie-poster-02If you can remember, the original Wizard of Oz movie debuted way back in 1939, starring Judy Garland as Dorothy and Frank Morgan as the Wizard of Oz.  That was a long time ago so it makes you wonder why they waited so long to make another movie in the series, considering how well it has done.  Fans will finally get their answer when they watch the new movie from Disney, Oz the Great and Powerful.

The movie is basically a prequel to the original Oz movie and it stars James Franco as the wizard himself; the con-man.  He pretty much overacted throughout the whole movie, but, it works for his character.  He plays the part of the selfish and witty “wizard” that is sent to the mysterious land of Oz.  But, before we get to Oz, it starts out in…yes, you guessed it, Kansas.  The beginning part of the movie is completely shot in black and white, which works very well.  He does a show, but it goes horribly wrong when a little girl asks him to make her walk.  Oz runs away and then chaos ensues as he gets thrown into a Tornado while in a hot-air balloon.  Doesn’t this all sound familiar yet?oz_the_great_and_powerful_21

Oz finally finds him self in the very beautiful land of Oz.  The first thing I noticed when I saw the land of Oz was it’s beautiful landscapes and scenery.  There is so much color and visuals that fill the screen when he sets foot on the ground.  Everything looks awesome and it is definitely candy for the eyes!  The first person that the wizard meets on his journey is Theodora, played by Mila Kunis.  I talked about how good of a job James Franco did with his part and now I am going to talk about how horrible of a job Mila Kunis did with her acting.  She is just not believable at all when she says her lines and acts during the movie.  She is basically just there for eye-candy, giving viewers something to look at…and by that I mean her body.  It is actually surprising how much Disney let go when the movie deals with cleavage.  Basically all of the female characters…besides the little porcelain girl…have cleavage that are ready to burst out of their clothes.

Anyway, the Wizard and Theodora then go to the Emerald City where they find Evanora, the sister of Theodora.  Evanora shows the Wizard around and then puts him to the test.  She tells him to save them from the evil witch that has been reigning over the land of Oz.  This is basically the point in the story where Oz is tasked with basically finding himself as a person.  He at first doesn’t believe in himself but then progresses onto bigger and better things during the course of the movie.oz-great-powerful-image01

On his adventure, he meets characters like a Flying Monkey and a China Girl, who accompany him during his trek to find the evil witch.  The wizard also finds Glinda (Michelle Williams), the woman who basically helps him out throughout the rest of the movie.  I could go on about the movie but I don’t want to in lieu of spoilers.  The movie has lots of twists and lots of cool visuals throughout.  The coolest part of the movie was definitely seeing the CGI work that probably went into the movie.  The animators really brought everything to life, Oz-Great-and-Powerful-Franco-dollincluding the funny characters of the Flying Monkey and the China Girl.  Those two characters, especially the monkey, brought lots of comedic relief to the movie.

The movie will most likely get lots of mixed reactions because of the quality of acting in the movie.  The only person who really did a good job with their acting would probably be Michelle Williams and James Franco.  Everybody else was really unbelievable   But putting all of that beside, I was entertained.  Even though this was not the best movie I have every watched, it was still very entertaining and worth the price of admission.  It was very cool to see the plot come together and lay the groundwork for the plot events of the original Oz movie.  If you are a big Oz fan, or just someone who wants to see how it all comes together, just forget about the acting and watch for the experience…because it’s a good one!