Clickbait Boyfriend: Don’t Burn Your Schmidges

Excitement for Kingdom Hearts 3 is building at Talk This NYC HQ. We’re watching every trailer. Combing through the Twitter commentary. And Clickbait Boyfriend is burning through Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance as fast as he possibly can to get ready!

(New to Clickbait Boyfriend? You can catch up on every single crazy post here!)

“Is that what I think it is? Is that Tron? They should have learned from their mistakes.”

-on unwelcome reprises

To be fair, Dream Drop Distance was originally released only about two years after Tron: Legacy as opposed to the twenty years that separate Kingdom Hearts 2 from the original Tron. Still, who was clamoring to revisit the Grid?

Tron Kingdom Hearts 2 saying "well, actually..."
Please don’t mansplain the key role that data apparently plays in this series to me, Tron.

“Bronze! I did good!”

-on participation trophies

Good job, CBB! You’re doing so great, sweetie..

Sora swinging keyblade at Olympus Coliseum win.
Remember the good old days, when we went for the gold?

“I had just gotten good at pushing triangle and then they added 15 new mechanics that took up the space in my brain dedicated to triangle.”

-on combat overload

The man can write an academic paper, no sweat, but ask him to remember which button opens a chest or how to link with his spirits, and he’s at a loss.

Multiple Soras in Tron world
An artistic interpretation of all the new skills Clickbait Boyfriend is holding in his brain.

“I’ve always had a soft spot for Anselm.”

-on namesake philosophers

That’s Anselm, not Ansem. 

St. Anselm with a keyblade
Although they’re both experienced Keyblade wielders.

“Riku is acting a lot less dick-ish in this game.”

-on character growth

Puberty is tough enough already without having your heart taken over by the embodiment of darkness. Cut the kid some slack. 

Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance Group Project
Riku better werk. Also, what’s a girl gotta do to get a real role for Kairi?

“Games like Kingdom Hearts should be about running around and exploring with your friends.”

-on the drop timer

Kingdom Hearts is definitely about adventuring with friends, but it’s mostly about darkness and a perpetual feeling of confusion. The latter always overrides the former.

Donald and Sora Kingdom Hearts 2 hug gif
Except for the pure love between a boy and his duck.

“I was kinda shipping Quasi and Esmeralda, damn!”

-on unrequited love

CBB didn’t watch The Hunchback of Notre Dame much as a kid (he actually told me he hated it) so he didn’t see this romantic swerve coming. Another candidate for Talk This’s upcoming game debut: Shipping Wars!

Quasimoto Dream Drop Distance King of Fools.
Clickbait Boyfriend every time he tries to make a big prediction about these games.

“This was an important lesson for Sora. You can’t go to a new world say hi to the first person you meet and become best friends with them.”

-on the unfriendly Tron guards

Remember what I just said about friendship? Sora carries that whole theme on his back. Number one BFF. He probably spends all of his time on the gummi ship making friendship bracelets. Reality check Sora: friendship takes work! Signed, your friendly (ha!) neighborhood twenty-something New Yorker.

Unfriendly Tron guards Dream Drop Distance with Sora
The worst thing Sora could imagine.

“It’s Schmeff Schmidges!”

-on the return of Uncanny Valley

Credit where credit is due: Schmeff Schmidges looks miles better than Schmorlando Schmloom. Still, add it to the list of reasons that this world was a mistake. How do you think real Jeff Bridges feels about this? I would be still be psyched to have a character modeled after me in a video game, even if I only looked quasi-human.

Schmeff Schmidges attacking Jeff Bridges in Tron Dream Drop Distance
Schmeff! Schmeff, please, it’s me, Schmeff! Don’t do it!

“When did Sora become a computer science expert?”

-on programmatic hearts

Other than possibly the gummi ship’s navigation system, Sora’s first encounter with a computer was courtesy of Leon and the Hollow Bastion Restoration Committee in Kingdom Hearts 2. Now here we are, less than a year later (maybe? Don’t get me started on how time works in these games again) and he’s a bonafide member of the Geek Squad.

Sora Dream Drop Distance with geeky glasses
“We’re going to need a full system reboot. Have you backed up your data to an external hard drive? If so, don’t tell Maleficent.”

“That’s what I’m going to do to my undergraduate students.”

-on “Ha! Flawed reasoning.”

Clickbait Boyfriend is going to be an excellent professor one day.

PhilPapers Kingdom Hearts no results
There’s a dearth of papers on the philosophy of Kingdom Hearts out there, just saying…

“Does Sora have any idea what he’s doing there? He’s just pushing buttons?”

-on Rinzler

Hello, IT? Have you tried turning it off and on again?

Sora, Donald, and Goofy in Kingdom Hearts 2 searching on the computer
Sora doesn’t even know how to Google.

“When he was going through a castle that he knew sapped this memories he had no trouble, but now some clearly evil guy plants a seed of doubt and Sora goes off the rails!”

-on reasonable doubt

This cuts both ways! Should Sora be more skeptical of Xehanort and Co. here? Absolutely. Should he also have been a little more alarmed by all the memory shenanigans in Castle Oblivion? 100% yes.

Donald Chain of Memories: Looks like nobody's home.
What a rude thing to say about Sora, Donald!

“Look at his blue hair! Ansem actually goes through the process of giving his hair highlights!”

-on villain style

Ansem is really just an emo kid at heart. And he’s only a heart, so he’s really into My Chemical Romance and hair chalk.

Ansem Dream Drop Distance with blue hair, Hot Topic model
I can’t find any real visual evidence (it’s mostly blue at the tips), so here’s my artistic rendering. I can almost hear the Fall Out Boy…

“That’s the second time there’s been an Arthur meme!” 

-on clenched fists

It’s uncanny how similar the shot is. 

When Ansem keeps temping you back the to darkside Riku Arthur meme fist
*makes fist*

“I do have it memorized!”

-on Axel…I mean Lea

But I already memorized Axel! You expect too much of me, Lea!

Kairi Got it Memorized Kingdom Hearts 3 Trailer Lea Axel
Kairi’s got it down.

“Oh my god they’re people again? What is going on?”

-on completed Nobodies

I told you! Kingdom Hearts…is confusion!

Hayner kicking the Sea Salt Ice Cream trio
It’s all thanks to Hayner, somehow.

“These recaps are actually so helpful though.”

-on Chronicles

It’s definitely useful to have what the Kingdom Hearts team thinks is a decent overview of the plot of each game. I think I’m going to have to read a lot of these before Kingdom Hearts 3 comes out, just so I don’t embarrass myself by not recognizing Ansem’s third cousin who was key to the plot of some bonus game given out in McDonald’s Happy Meals in 2008.

Mickey Kingdom Hearts 2 characters funny recap.
Actual screenshot of the Kingdom Hearts 2 recap.

“Why is your hair such a different texture from mine?”

-on Tron humans vs. Destiny Islands humans

Humans on planet earth have a pretty wide variety of hair textures, so it seems plausible that humans who evolved concurrently on entirely separate worlds would also have variations in head fur. I mean, Sam is descended from Schmeff Schmidges, so what else did you expect?

Sam mouth wide open Tron Legacy Dream Drop Distance
Sam is still kind of offended that you called out his genetic helmet hair.

“This is so much better than Kingdom Hearts 2.” 

-on Tron racing

Anything would have been an improvement on that bizarre mini game. Still, it’s no Crash Team Racing

Riku jumping on Tron motorcycle Dream Drop Distance Rad
Sick moves, bruh. (Gif courtesy of Emma.)

“Yeah Riku, let’s talk about parents for a second…”

-on the Pokemon parenting model

Riku’s parents still haven’t made it into the series. You’d think somewhere in the past 13.582 games, we could have found time for a cameo. I guess they learned their lesson from leaving Sora’s mom waiting with dinner for fifteen years. Riku’s parents are apparently fine with sending their teenage son out on an adventure on his own. At least this time he has some cute monsters to help him do the fighting.

Xemnas/Ansem Riku's father Kingdom Hearts
Unless we have seen Riku’s father…

“They just said hell! Damn! T for Teen, am I right?”

-on adult language

The kids are growing up!

Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance 3DS cover
Actually, it’s rated E-10+

“What is up with Riku and these one liners?”

-on the cooler Keyblade wielder

Sora isn’t really a one-liner guy, so the writing team has been saving these sick burns for a decade.   

Riku? I haven't heard that name in years.
Don’t give in to the darkness of pithy quotes, Riku! That’s Clickbait Boyfriend’s job!

Next time: Character rehabilitation, underwater adventures, and a long-awaited return…not.

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