I Hates Billy Mitchell
I finally saw the documentary The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters last night (seems that Netflix sent EVERYONE a copy of that doc yesterday).
First of all, there's no need for the title of the doc to be that long. Either "King of Kong" or "Fistful of Quarters" would be quite sufficient, thanks. And "Fistful of Quarters" is slightly disingenuous since the skill-level of these players allows them to play hours of a videogame on a single quarter. The subtitle just doesn't add anything meaningful to the discussion!
That said, the real title of the film might as well be:
The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters: Billy Mitchell is a Fucking Asshole
Because Billy Mitchell is an asshole. Or at least, that seems to be the doc's central conceit.
If you haven't seen it, the film concerns the saintly underdog Steve Wiebe (pronounced "wee-bee") and his struggle to beat the long-standing high-score of Billy Mitchell in "Donkey Kong". Billy Mitchell comes across as a world-class douchebag who does everything short of literally throwing flaming barrels at Wiebe to prevent him from beating his score.
HERE Billy Mitchell speaks in the aftermath of the popular documentary. I think most people are savvy enough—at this point in history—to appreciate how editing can distort a story.
All right, that's not true. First, most people aren't that savvy. Second, I'm fairly savvy and I easily get sucked into this stuff.
I watch a doc like this, I know there were hundreds of hours of footage, I see how the editing is manipulating my sympathies. And yet... I can only react to what's being shown to me...
And all the evidence that I'm being served seems to say that Billy Mitchell is a fucking dickwad. (Who isn't nearly as great as he thinks he is.)
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