Sunday, June 7, 2009

what rocks? (home alone 2)

(the perfect summertime christmas movie)

why it rocks: women want him and men want to be him…how many times can you say that about a twelve year old? scene after scene, viewing after viewing, kevin mccallister isn’t afraid to take coolness to the next level. whether he’s clobbering the wet/sticky bandits, practicing his cannonballs or finagling the vacation of a lifetime at the plaza (on his parent’s dime), kevin faces each obstacle with his trademark confident curousity and an infinite  arsenal of zingers. His uncharted coolness led to a slew of imitators (blank check, duncan checks in, 3 ninjas) and everyone in-the-know knows that imitation is the highest form of rocking. 

why else it rocks: the posters and trailers would like for you to believe that Kevin is “lost in new york,” but at no point in the film does he exhibit the tell-tale signs of being lost; fear, dread, confusion, crashing on oceanic flight 815 and held hostage by de-facto members of the dharma initiative. no, never for a second does kevin let the situation overtake him. in fact, he remains exponentially calmer, cooler and collected-er than his parents. this makes kevin more than just a miniature james dean; he is someone and something that all children should strive to be. he is incapable of being lost because where he is, is where he is meant to be. one can only imagine that if children were forced to watch this movie every day for their entire childhood upbringing they would be more often comfortable with their surroundings. 

seriously, what’s the deal with it’s rocking: in home alone 2.0, kevin takes his scheming, scamming and chicanery to a whole new level. but he doesn’t do it alone. he relies on the wonderful services of his electronic sidekick: the talkboy. The talkboy is your basic run of the mill portable variable speed cassette player and recorder, except that it had a playback function that seemed to make it very easy for kevin to pretend to be using his father’s voice. The talkboy was originally conceived as a non-working prop for the movie but in 1993 it was made into a retail version, brought on by a massive letter-writing campaign by young fans of the film. Notable, several spinoff versions were created:

-A pink-colored "Talkgirl", marketed towards females
-Talkboy FX Plus, an ordinary writing pen with a built-in recorder and six buttons that play sound effects.
-Talkgirl FX Plus, also marketed towards females.
-Deluxe Talkboy.
-Talkboy Jr., a pocket-sized version of the recorder.

I spent the majority of my post-home-alone-2 years brining down the garbage, selling used crap and generally sucking up to my parents with the hopes of obtaining a coveted talkboy. by the time I finally had the funds to procure this wonderful futuristic device i was on the wrong side of puberty and walking around with a portable voice-changer would have relegated me to an even lower social strata. still, though, i begged my father to take me to caldor to make the purchase. i had it in my hand, finally about to be the proud owner of something i had wanted three years earlier and my father looked at me with green eyes and steel confidence and said “are you sure you want this?” i cracked, I gave up and put it back. i have never been satisfied with life since. 

one can only assume a movie of such top-caliber would lead to a super nintendo video game of such top-caliber as well, right? well, no, not at all, not even close. here's a clip from the terrible, terribly awful, video game:


  1. You are a charming writer with an interesting voice. This is a nice piece.

  2. Man! That's a fucking bad video game!

    You know… I stayed at The Plaza a few months before Home Alone 2 premiered… The following year I got, by mail, an invitation to live 'The Home Alone 2 Experience at The Plaza'. I still have the brochure saved somewhere.

    Home Alone 2 rocks, though I always thought it was too violent in a stupid way. I absolutely disliked the scene where the short guy's head is on fire (plus it annoyed me that he placed not only his head in the toilet but his entire body… ridiculous!) and the scene where the slim man (oh yeah, I so remember the names! -actors/character… whatever they where 'the fat & the thin'…- where was I? oh, yeah… the scene where the thin guy is electrocuted and everything goes cartoon-like… showing his skeleton but then 'magically' everything is alright & all he gets is a little hair frizz… Other than that… it bloody rocks!

    But don't let Home Alone 2 rockness undermine the extreme high level of coolness & rockness Home Alone 1 has: Yes, it doesn't posses Manhattan nor The Plaza nor Duncan's Toy Store nor the amazing Talkboy nor pigeon lady nor an attic at the Lincoln Center but it does have the smell of a new car, after all it was the first one, it introduced us the adorable Kevin, we first heard his signature screaming, it showed us the fantastic & dangerous tricks/weapons we could all make with the shit we have lying around the house, stairs + sledge!, old creepy yet nice neighbour, a tarantula and finally: being really Home Alone!

  3. It is obvious you must procure a talkboy even at your advanced age, so that you may experience a fulfilled life. This would be cathartic and could be scratched off your "Bucket List" of things one must do before they die.

    Please don't deny yourself the state of enlightenment you are bound to ascend once you have the object in your hands.

    Good luck on your quest!!