Saturday, December 18, 2010

Growing Up With Tron

Some things are better off left unexplored.

When I was applying to colleges, I didn’t apply to Notre Dame. I was a huge fan of their football team in the eighties (hate me if you will, but Lou Holtz could coach, speech impediment or not). I had been there in high school for some very fulfilling experiences. In fact, the time I spent there was so meaningful that despite never having attended I proposed to my wife on the campus. But when the time came to fill out applications, I knew whatever college I attended, I would end up hating after spending four years there. So, I left it completely off the list and have never regretted that decision. I wanted to keep Notre Dame as a pristine, unsullied memory of all that is pure and good. I can return there now with only happy memories. I don’t look at stairwells and remember passing out there in a puddle of my own vomit. I have no fears of awkward moments like running into that old professor that screwed me on my Physics grade second semester.

But while the seedy underbelly of some things can be avoided, there are certain other experiences that one must face. What was once wholesome and right must be explored further and exposed for that which it truly is and very little, if anything, is perfect.

I’m reminded of this now that the new Tron movie is out. When the first movie was released (which coincidentally was around the last time Notre Dame had a decent season), I was in love with it. It was one of the first movies I ever recall watching on VHS. I must have watched it a thousand times. The yellow light cycle I owned from it often causes me to consider a headlamp wearing expedition into the crawl space above my parents’ garage to retrieve it.

So now I’m burdened with the responsibility of watching Tron: Legacy. To not watch it would be like betraying old childhood friends who provided me with countless hours of entertainment and cherished memories. But to watch the sequel to what is already one of my favorite movies of all time may only bring the ivory tower that is the original Tron crashing down to earth. Nothing exposes the holes in a plot like having to build a whole new movie on the already faulty foundation.

But I’ll see it. And I’m sure that even if it’s not everything that I hope it will be, I’ll deal with it and find a way to still enjoy the original. I suppose watching your ideals dragged through the mud is part of growing up. Circa 1982 when I was watching Tron on a near daily basis, I had no concerns over women. They were pretty and some of them made my face turn red, but that was the extent of it at the time. But that innocence too came to an end. Since then, I have discovered both the benefits and the horrors of the feminine charms. We take the good with the bad.

Whether Tron: Legacy is placed on a pedestal next to the original or is cast down to the depths of terrible sequels alongside Jaws 2 through 4, Blues Brothers 2000 and Teen Wolf Too has yet to be seen. But one thing is for sure. It is time for me to move forward. For better or worse, I will see soon what Tron has to offer.

1 comment:

  1. I saw it but will wait for you to see it and comment...I wouldn't want to bias your opinion!