Sunday, March 02, 2014

Bad postcard of the week: Terrible tots terrorizing Traverse City and time-traveling U.S. Cellular Field

Terrible Tot terrorizing Traverse City!
 Kids can be dangerous. We know this from this week’s bad postcard, which can only be a scene from a Godzilla-like horror movie where the adorable-but-giant little girl walks through Traverse City, smashing and demolishing everything in her path.

Don’t let the smile fool you. That tot is in the middle of a reign of terror, turning beautiful Traverse City into large and smoldering piles of bricks, cherries and tourists. Note the Big Red Carnation of Destruction in her hand!

The back reads: “The Miniature City has returned. You can see 108 wooden buildings, real landmarks of Traverse City – some are 50 years old. The Miniature City building is located just across from Les Hatch Pontiac on U.S. 31 South.”


I know what happens next, because my wife loves monster movies. A bunch of normal-sized kids, at least one whom will be named Kenny, will somehow be allowed to tag along with scientists and once-skeptical-but-now-convinced top military brass as they find a way to either lure the dimpled and dangerous girl-monster back into Grand Traverse Bay – she is wearing a sailor suit – or freeze her solid and drop her off in the Upper Peninsula, where she won't thaw until late July.

My wife watches a lot of these monster movies, both the classics with guys in rubber suits and new ones that show on SyFy that offer past-their-prime actors battling computer-generated sharks/gators/aliens – a combination of them, if we are lucky.

Some, like “Jersey Shore Shark Attack” are good fun. But sometimes, well, I just have to call foul.

Let’s take this scene from “Alien Tornado,” which has been re-released as “TornadoWarning.”

The IMDB storyline: “Aliens invade the Earth using electromagnetic tornadoes as a weapon of mass destruction. Brilliant high school student with her father and blogger involved in the study of tornadoes struggling against time to prevent a huge disaster and defeat the conquest of the planet.”

OK, it’s more plausible than “Sharknado.” Seriously, of all the animals in the ocean, only the sharks are scooped up in the tornadoes?

And this movie was pretty good – blogger-heroes are a good start -- until one scene.

Our high school heroine, Kelly, was in Chicago at an outdoor café when she is alarmed to see tornadoes dropping down into U.S. Cellular Field, home of the Chicago White Sox. We see the ballpark destroyed and the scoreboard hurled into the sky.

Let’s list the problems, complete with screen captures.

First, there is no place on the South Side where someone can eat at an outdoor café and see the ballpark. In that neighborhood, getting to and from your car safely is part of the adventure. It’s better now, but still, there are no cafes.
There is no street cafe where you can see this. Also, note the iconic Comiskey scoreboard.
Note that Kelly was gazing upon U.S. Cellular Field in its post-renovation glory, painted black.

Then, we are presented with an aerial view of the tornadoes touching down in the infield. But wait! This is no longer the black, renovated version of the ballpark. It’s the original, light blue version! Big error!
We somehow traveled back in tome to pre-renovation U.S. Cellular Field. Again, note the scoreboard.
Then, the alien twister rips out the scoreboard. Is it the legendary White Sox scoreboard, with colorful pinwheels that spin and glow when a Sox player hits a home run? NO! It’s the legendary manual scoreboard from Wrigley Field, the famous home of the rival Chicago Cubs!
Yes, somehow the aliens turned the Sox scoreboard into the Wrigley Field scoreboard. 
For this to all make sense, The Cubs and White Sox would have agreed to somehow trade scoreboards and the twisters must be able to instantly transport us back in time to when U.S. Cellular Field was named Comiskey Park and painted blue.

If this time travel happened, did my epic booing of Derek Jeter ever occur?

Look, I can buy into a lot of things with these SyFy horror movies. I can understand Tiffany and Debbie Gibson battling mutant snakes and crocs -- and each other! -- and even New Jersey sharks leaping out of the water, swallowing Joey Fatone whole and landing back in the water. Could happen, though the idea of people paying to see Joey Fatone in concert is a big stretch.

But rampant ballpark misrepresentation destroys any ounce of credibility.

If the filmmakers are placing iconic scoreboards in the wrong stadiums, I’m going to have a hard time accepting that aliens have discovered how to direct tornadoes and use them as weapons to conquer Chicago and, presumably, northern Indiana, since it’s right there.

Movie ruined.

Let this be a lesson to future SyFy film producers. Do not mess with ballparks unless you get your details straight.

Now, a giant super-gator and flying sharks and a terrible tot from Traverse City teaming up to level Yankee Stadium right in the middle of the Derek Jeter farewell tour – I’d watch that.


Warren Zvon said...

Should be interesting to see what they do with this recent Sharknado 2 visit to Citi Field.
Hey, maybe they'll do it up with Shea's scoreboard!

Mets Guy in Michigan said...

My fear is that they do something bad to the Statue of Liberty. Lady Liberty also gets abused in these movies!

Warren Zvon said...

True. Even Doctor Who messed with the good Lady.