Tag Archives: Hunger Games

Appalling Theme Park Ideas

12 Nov

Books that should NOT be turned into family fun parks.

Welcome to Where's Waldo World! Toddlers this way...

When I learned about the potential of a Hunger Games theme park (“Bring your whole family to a magical place where you can slaughter children for entertainment!”), my mind naturally jumped to other tasteless literary theme park adaptations the world should definitely avoid.

Heart of Darkness Jungle Trek: Survive tropical diseases, deadly animals, killer natives, and mad cohorts long enough to capture or kill a power-drunk megalomaniac before he dismembers your family and sells your bones as branded tchotchkes at the gift shop.

Fahrenheit 451 Farms: Enjoy some book-burning good times with literary bonfires, random deadly attacks by robot dogs, and speedy overdose resuscitation. You can’t leave the venue until you memorize a novel of your choosing.

Where’s Waldo World: Separated families must locate all their members from among thousands of similarly dressed strangers. (Note: This park is not unlike Disneyland.)

Holyland: A Bible Adventure: Survive a fiery furnace, sell your sibling to nomads, build a raft in the wave pool before the cataclysmic flood is released (every 30 minutes), and demonstrate your bravery and stone-slinging skills against a giant homicidal sociopath in heavy armor.

Arrow to the Sun Adventure Park: Learn about the rich culture of the ancient Pueblo Indians, get shot into the sky on the Arrow Ride, then battle lions, snakes, bees, and electrocution on an artificial sun.

Dune Safari: Go on an exciting spice hunt while under a heavy Harkonnen laser barrage, wear stillsuits during 120-degree desert jogs as you flee giant attacking Worms with razor-sharp teeth, and invite the entire family to try the “humanity test” with a genuine replica black box and gom jabbar.

Tom Clancy Land: Celebrate the magic of the Cold War and America’s military-industrial complex by experiencing a nuclear reactor accident during an undersea submarine battle, enduring the Ebola adventure, and taking a ride in the Rapid Decompression chamber. And don’t forget to suit up for a raid against paramilitary narcotics traffickers in a Colombian jungle!

And of course, there’s always Maze Runner World, but that practically goes without saying. What are some other truly awful ideas?

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New Olympic Sports for 2020

5 Mar

Suggested events to replace wrestling in the Olympics

New branding for 2020 Olympic games

Now that we’ve solved the healthcare crisis, let’s return to a pressing topic from a couple of weeks ago, namely the removal of wrestling from the Olympics. Although the Maximum Know-How team presented five other sports more worthy of the ax, apparently none of the 20 people who read that post were high-up enough in the IOC to influence a reversal of the decision.

So that leaves us short one sport for the 2020 Olympic games—with only seven years to go! Luckily, we’ve put  our  minds to it and come up with seven great sporting alternates to fill the gap.

Chariot Racing: The most obvious choice is replace an original, ancient Greece–era event like wrestling with another ancient event. To make it more appealing to the modern masses, take it a few steps beyond realistic reenactment and incorporate some Hollywood-esque elements, such as jumps, figure eights, flaming hoops, and Tusken Raiders firing on contestants from the rock formations bordering the near edge of the great Dune Sea.

Arena Combat: Now, clearly something like the Hunger Games would be brutal, heartless, discriminatory, and sickening, but that’s exactly why millions of people would tune in. Who wouldn’t want to watch an event that combines Survivor with American Gladiator with crazy Japanese game shows. It wouldn’t be to the death, of course (that would likely result in widespread war across the planet), but there would be individual and team victors, like in gymnastics. The arenas would feature multiple terrains, including rocky cliffs, shallow lagoons, quicksand traps, jungles infested with skin-burrowing insects, etc. After the games, arenas could be leased out for paintball tournaments or children’s birthday parties.

Quidditch: Not by 2020, maybe, but eventually.

Mash-Up Events: Combine two vaguely similar sports—such as soccer (i.e., fútbol) and lacrosse—and have them compete against each other on the same field. For example, the Brazilian soccer team tries to score soccer goals while keeping the opposing Canadian lacrosse team from scoring lacrosse goals, and vice versa. Every Olympics we could swap out the two sports for exciting new pairings, such as speed skating versus hockey, or pole vault versus javelin, or indoor oval cycling versus badminton. I’d totally watch that.

Non-Equine Equestrian Events: Riding horses is kind of old hat, so why not pick more difficult animals? Like ostrich racing or long-distance dolphin diving. That would also help sell more seats because folks like PETA would be out in force to protest.

Video Gaming: This is an appalling, but probably inevitable, option.

Thumb Wrestling: The way for traditional wrestling to weasel its way back into favor is through alternative “demonstration sports” like this. Or it can take the X-Games route with sponsor-friendly spectacles like high-altitude female mud wrestling on a half-pipe. Regardless of its return path, I expect the sport will need to make concessions to help boost its marketing appeal, such as requiring contestants to wear those crazy Mexican luchador masks.