When Peter Jackson decided to shoot The Hobbit at 48 Frames Per Second, he had no idea that his decision would lead to the tragic deaths of hundreds of nerds when rioting broke out. What began as a simple argument over the plusses and minuses of 48 vs. 24 fps rapidly escalated into a full scale battles complete with hand crafted armor, Dwarven battle cries and at least 78 confirmed replicas of Bilbo Baggins’ sword, Sting.
Rioting was confirmed world wide as advocates of the new technology taunted the traditionalists (whom they called “24 effing pee pee’s”) for their failure to appreciate the crystal clear resolution and stunning special effects. For their part, the traditionalists argued that the “Jackson-offs” (a not so subtle suggestion that the lovers of 48 fps were only fans because they believe Peter Jackson can do no wrong) were ignoring special effects that looked horrible and make-up that was not good enough for the high resolution.
Had the argument stopped there, it seems likely that many nerds would have been able to return to their parents’ basements without much more than a bruised ego. Unfortunately, the advocates of 24 fps chose to expand their criticism of the film to such taboo subjects as the appropriateness of the scenes with Radagast the Brown.
“Look – I know he’s in the books and Sylvester McCoy is one of my favorite Doctors,” traditionalist Howard Jenkins said while being treated for cuts and bruises, “but he just doesn’t belong in the film.”
“Also,” he continued, “the effects with Radagast’s sled are almost unwatchable in 48 fps.”
Jenkins was a lucky survivor of the altercation at his local megaplex. He says it was because he was wearing his replica Mithril shirt, which he was pleased to discover came in XXXXL.
Others weren’t so lucky. Biff Newson was pronounced dead after having been beaten by a replica of Gandalf the Grey’s staff. Authorities at the scene say Biff might have survived if he had not been convinced that his replica of the one ring would actually make him invisible. It is believed that Newson was surprised to discover he was completely visible when he was taunting supporters of 24 fps by telling them that perhaps they needed to purchase a second pair of glasses since “four eyes wasn’t enough.”
The riots exposed the ugly underbelly of nerd society.
“What people need to realize,” says psychologist Nick Nickley, “is that nerds have a lot of disposable income and they spend a lot of it on weaponry they don’t know how to use. If you get a bunch of guys shouting at each other while swinging replicas of Glamdring around, somebody is going to get hurt.”
And indeed they did. As the haze cleared from the misty mountains this morning, many parents are left to clean week old pizza out of empty rooms, many comic shops are left to wonder how they will ever make up for the lost holiday sales and many girlfriends are wondering if their sweetheart survived the massacre.
Strike that last one. None of the deceased or injured have confirmed girlfriends that are not inflatable.
For his part, Peter Jackson is sorry for the problems. He promised that when the second installment of The Hobbit comes out next year, he will work to ensure that 48 fps and 24 fps versions of the film are not playing at the same theatres.