IGN hates ‘me’…

…but digs the DVD.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

I’m going to start sending those Tony Robbins doppelganger Christmas cards out now.

Jeez frickin’ Louise.

38 Responses to “IGN hates ‘me’…”

  1. The Eggplant says:

    But isn’t the series a reflection of the creator?

    Man, that was harsh.

  2. Guppy says:

    I dunno but this has been the general “criticism” of readers. People do not want to read “cinema”. I dunno I really see nothing that I haven’t seen before. He writes well though, thats a first. 😀

  3. The Omnipotent Andrew says:

    It almost seems like this guy has some sort of personal vendetta against you, Brooke. Like he wants to turn people against you with claptrap like this:

    “(This, combined with the fact that he required – or solicited – Fox’s help to distribute the DVD invites further criticisms of hypocrisy.)”

  4. Susan (FA) says:

    This guy completely missed the point of the medium altogether.

    That is all I will say….for now.

  5. Moosh says:

    Well, I pretty much agree with Gupster in that this isn’t something new that we’ve been hearing from critics. He actually made a lot of good points, some of which have been felt for a while.. hell, that’s why we tease you as a “sell-out” mosttimes. But from us (since we’re professionals of a different sort 😉 ) we say it out of love… because we know and love you.

    Oh well right? Broken Saints is successful and out there world-wide and nothing can make me happier for you guys :D.

  6. admin says:

    You clearly weren’t reading between the lines, Moosh’ – I have ZERO issues with the slowness or problems with ‘riding the line between cinema and comics – but this guy was taking some personal swings, especially regarding the ‘artiste/sellout/Tony-Robbins’ thing. This is how I responded in a direct mail to him today:

    “Hey Todd,

    I truly appreciate you taking the time to wade through the ocean of material in the Broken Saints ‘universe’ (especially after what I am sure was an insane Comicon schedule), and am pleased that you gave the project a fair shake. I never expected everyone to enjoy ‘BS’ – I know the material, pacing, and presentation aren’t exactly everyone’s cup of Earl Grey – but it’s a shame that timelines may have required you to ‘cram’ in any way…the series tends to resonate more deeply with lights out and deadlines disintegrated 😉

    That said, I just wanted to clarify a few things of a personal nature, in the hopes of offering some additional insights:

    – the entire DVD project was originally suggested by Telefilm Canada back in 2003, after we had finished the free Flash series online. After a lengthy application (on their suggestion), we received an New Media Artist grant/loan to remaster, record, design, and author the original version for Web and Canadian release.

    – We expanded from a team of 3 to a team of 35 – plus voiceover and other creative folks – and reworked 3yrs of material in 9 months. I only paid myself enough for room and board at this time, though I worked 16hr+ days – 7 days a week.

    – The goal was to take this DVD package to various outlets/distributors/broadcasters to spread the themes in the series far and wide – my only goal was to reach more hearts and minds. Any monies made were to be returned to Telefilm in lieu of the production grant, or paid to contractors who helped us with deferred labor on the series (and their number was legion!)

    – At last year’s SD Comicon, we were approached by several distributors that wanted to license the project. Strangely enough, the rep from Fox (John Scott, who had apparently been responsible for acquiring Waking Life, Napoleon Dynamite, Donnie Darko Director’s Cut, and Sideways – that was part of his pitch to me, to counter the Evil Empire image of Murdoch’s machine) made the strongest offer.

    – I struggled with that offer for 3 months…and seriously considered just letting the whole thing dissolve…but realized that the project’s goal was still to reach as many as possible with the messages therein. Not only could Fox get BS on shelves around the world, but their modest budget could provide for additional languages and some fixes to small problems in our Canadian release. Additionally, we could finally get our heads above water with paying back Telefilm and the kind folks who we still owed for deferral work.

    – In the end, we shepherded/performed all of the design and re-authoring for bare bones wages over 6 months, as Fox was not exactly equipped to deal with 1.5 million+ digital files in formats their contractors weren’t familiar with. As well, a sizable portion of our advance was used to pay the producer that set up the deal, and to license music for the worldwide release on home video.

    – I’m still in the same apartment tiny apartment. Still without a vehicle. Still prowling like a panther. And still passionate about storytelling with ‘purpose’. The only thing that’s changed is my waistline (if you’re going to make a Tony Robbins parallel, at least use a better picture – I look like I ate the neighborhood kids in that shot you posted! )

    Again, thanks for your candor and commitment to professionalism. If you’re at all keen, I’d be happy to discuss these and other points with you in more detail.

    Warm Regards,


    I hope he responds, as my feeling is that the people at Fox pressured him for a fast review after he failed to cover it for Comicon (as promised), and he decided to bite back because I kept hassling for a review. Still…you can make ‘sellout’ jokes as much as you want…but if you truly FEEL the same as the fellow above concerning this issue? Well…then you just don’t know me – or BS – very well, now do you?


  7. Moosh says:

    Thanks for making me cry you asshole. I was complimenting you and showing support, so obviously you didn’t read my comment correctly. I’ve supported and promoted BS as much as I had been able to… so whatever.

  8. admin says:

    Did you even READ what I wrote above?

  9. Moosh says:

    YES I DID and I knew of your struggles and your vision and your passion for the story and the project and the people. I never once doubted any of it, never once intentionally sought out any ill-will towards you in regards of Broken Saints (maybe I got cranky back in February with some forum crap, but I’ve stuck my foot in my mouth since then). I started crying to minute you accused me of making sellout jokes because why is it that EVERYFUCKINGONEELSE IS ALLOWED TO but noooooooooo when I use it in a reference to what others have felt, you bring out the claws. I love everything about Broken Saints. I love everything you have done, I love everything everyone else has done to and for BS. I wouldn’t display the BS flash banner on my myspace nor link it on my livejournal nor stay around on the forums if I didn’t still believe in you nor the project. Yes I’m a critic of some things about BS- #1 I’m one of the people who’s a fan of the classic flash site (but so are other BS ‘rats). That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t go out and buy the DVD (I just found out I’m getting it as a gift since I’m poor and struggling in my own life). Hell since the beginning of my involvement with BS, I’ve always felt if I had the money I’d just give it to you guys. I spread the word as much as I possibly can. I promote it, I promote you.

    There’s nothing more I can say.

  10. admin says:

    I’m just tired of the sellout jokes, period. I expect them from some folks, and I roll my eyes. But thanks to this guy, there could be a whole new wave of skewed perceptions. It hurts my feelings and makes it feel almost futile in ways…especially when the ‘attack tone’ is painfully obvious to strangers (even to the folks at Fox, who didn’t understand why he got so personal regarding me in his review), but my friends brush it off and seem to jokingly agree with it.

    I was kneejerking.

    Now I’m just jerking.

    What a great day.

  11. Moosh says:

    I’m sorry I mentioned it B. I still love you.

  12. JoshSpazJosh says:


    I think that sometimes when you promote the series in the context of evangelism, which you tend to do – elevating the series to almost its own religion – it seems like you’re acting kind of like what this review is talking about. IMO sometimes your genuine passion for telling a quality narrative is masked by the way you describe and talk about the passion. . .

    . . .just IMO from my experiences. I’m all for Broken Saints and disagree with what’s in this review but at the same time I can definitely see where they’re coming from and how one could get passion and pretension mixed up.

  13. zeek says:

    I wrote to IGN very sternly, and will cancel my membership when I get back to my home system. This, coming from someone who would walk by the mixing room during the audio remaster sessions to shout ‘sellout’ 😛

  14. admin says:

    Thanks for understanding Moosh.

    JSJ – I somewhat see your point, but I’m incredibly proud of the Walker Lecture and the entirely sincere zeal expressed in that special moment. The Tony Robbins comment was not just a case of being ‘mixed up’…it was mean, plain and simple.

    Zeek – I appreciate the gesture, but think about what you’re doing. He’s not going to edit the review, apologize, or soften his future stance – he is an entertainment journalist. He critiques because he cannot TEACH or DO. For many of them there, it is the only power they have in their lives…so be careful in giving yours away in any measure.

  15. zeek says:

    He responded already. *snicker*. Something along the lines of “MR BURGESS JUST EMAILED ME TO COMPLIMENT ME ON MY CANDOR AND PROFESSIONALISM SO THERE”. Lolz.

  16. Guppy says:

    Brooke, Brooke, Brooke.. you discussed this at the ComiCon about the “Selloutness” and yes that can be troublesome thats why I left that out of my comment I was focusing on the review I ignored the petty snide remarks towards several directors, not only you…. because thats what they are PETTY and immature. By now after 5 years should be above this, I would have personally responded to the man the same way, we also have to remind ourselves a lot of the new reviews are the first time these individuals seen Broken Saints. SLOW? Hey at least they have all twelve hours in front of them, they did not have to wait for months, wait depending on load time, and then dig in. They do not consider the history until after the fact, which I find hasty. Other negative reviews like this against indie projects going mainstream , I find this happen not only with Kevin Smith and you, but with Richard Linklater, Richard Kelly(even though he is still working on something Indie, every other question at comicon was kinda snide, saying so would you humble yourself to do A Studio project, and he was like yeah if the project is right for me… I am happy to do it.) I tried to focus on what this guy was suppose to do, and ignore the negative crap especially when they do not consider the history this project has.

    sorry about the ramble, but thats how I feel especially what we have talked about in SD,


  17. zeek says:

    Oh hey, Amazon is selling BS with V for Vendetta now. Cool.

  18. Dr Dood says:

    Dammit Brooke, why’d you have to get all weepy, I was primed and ready for some delicious mocking. And with what you’ve said you’re making me feel bad considering I’ve been one of the main proponents of the sellout cause, which I should point out was never EVER meant seriously. While I don’t doubt you’re capable of selling out, you clearly haven’t even come close to doing it thus far.

    And while this review was kindof… biased, I do think it gave the best tagline you could ever hope for:

    “Broken Saints is like The Matrix if it was made by Kevin Smith”

    I personally couldn’t think of a higher compliment.

  19. JoshSpazJosh says:

    On an unrelated note [seriously] Matt Chan just gave me my swag, sans posters which he forgot at Rochester.

    O M G

    Pictures soon.

  20. gypsy says:


    can i ask why you stated “thanks for your candor and commitment to professionalism,” (aside from being respectful and professional)?

    what he wrote was simply partial and unprofessional to an Extreme…

    PS: thanks for your honesty surrounding the sell-out joke that irks… truly, from this witness, it is a sheer impossibility.

  21. Saggio says:

    I didn’t realize people actually took anything IGN published seriously. The mainstream press doesn’t have to like the series, Brooke, for you to have succeeded in your goal or vision or whatever. Don’t dilute your message just so a few more people will be able to see it.

  22. tobias says:

    Hmmm. Yet another otherwise exhaustive review that completely fails to even mention that there is music in the series, let alone say anything at all about that music… unless you count ‘original voiceless stereo track’ and ‘bass notes are deep and rich’ as comments on the music. What do you suppose could be on that voiceless stereo track? Why, deep rich bass notes of course! No respect… 😉

    I guess in this case I should take it as a blessing. Actually, for that matter, he basically fails to say anything at all about the art either, odd since he does seem to have some understanding of the comic book medium. He seemed quite fixated on the storyline and writing – hey, I don’t have a problem with that, though I don’t happen to agree with his overall assessment – and on bashing Brooke for things which are quite irrelevant to the series or the DVD. I second gypsy on wondering how exactly he deserves kudos for professionalism. Candor, I can see…

    About the Tony Robbins comparison – I know Brooke at least as well as any of you, and I personally love and appreciate the passionate, persuasive intensity thing, but i guess it could be read the wrong way. I don’t know, but I’ve never really dug the sellout jokes much either. I realize they were meant purely in fun, which is why I never said anything, but that kind of fun is never really harmless, it’s usually on some level a way to get your dig in but not take responsibility for it, so that the person who’s been the butt of the joke comes off as ‘taking you seriously’ if they don’t laugh along – even though they’ve actually just been dealt an underhanded insult.

    So, I’ve held my tongue about it for a long time, not wanting to get all huffy on Brooke’s behalf (he always seemed to take it well), but since it’s on the table, that’s my take: it’s really not cool. No-one who’s ever put their heart and soul into something the way we did with BS, let alone having to scratch out a living and pay rent somehow while they’re at it, would feel comfortable jabbing a fellow creator with that barb over the modest level of success the series has enjoyed. My guess is Mr. Gilchrist would probably not fit that category. Or, he’s just consumed with jealousy that Brooke has managed to carry this thing so far from such humble beginnings, on pure passion – with a little help from his friends (and family). Otherwise, why such a personal attack?

    my too sense

    p.s. hey, i just realized I can EDIT MY COMMENTS HERE! I have the power! Muahahahahahaha…..

  23. admin says:

    I have a call scheduled with Mr IGN tomorrow – I plan to address the ‘bias’ issue, as well as his choice not to highlight ANY of the team’s impressive efforts. The tone of my letter was designed to trigger an open response, which it certainly did…more on this as it develops.

    As for caring about IGN at all? Think of it this way, Sagg’ – their hub reaches 30 million readers regularly…and the BS review was featured on the main page for an entire weekend. Now imagine how many folks might have been on the proverbial fence regarding the series, and have now cemented their choice NOT to experience the work, based largely on one opinion – admittedly eloquent and well-crafted – that seemed to carry the tell-tale scent of ‘vendetta’ (and yes, please pardon the timing).

    That’s irreparable damage, and I cannot help but think – particularly after listening to editorial and industry peers who offered their unsoliticited takes – that I should raise a bit of a stink about it.

  24. dumbwhiteguy says:

    I still wuvvles my little Brookie-poo, and muffin cookies. All glory be to the muffin cookie.

  25. Saggio says:

    As for caring about IGN at all? Think of it this way, Sagg’ – their hub reaches 30 million readers regularly…and the BS review was featured on the main page for an entire weekend. Now imagine how many folks might have been on the proverbial fence regarding the series, and have now cemented their choice NOT to experience the work, based largely on one opinion – admittedly eloquent and well-crafted – that seemed to carry the tell-tale scent of ‘vendetta’ (and yes, please pardon the timing).

    You can make it a numbers game if you want. But I’ll point out that you have ads running on one of the most visited sites on the internet (Penny Arcade), the creators and maintainers of which have given you glowing reviews many a time. I’m not going to try and dissuade you from defending yourself, the Crew, or your creation, but it always helps to be mindful and keep things in perspective.

    One man’s opinion, even if 30 million people read it, remains one opinion. Of those 30 million people, I’m sure at least a few will have come to the site and checked out the series themselves. In addition, you’ve got the entire traditional BS fan-community that continues to pimp the series (viral marketing for the win), and the new DVD in Blockbusters and Walmarts everywhere.

    Of course, there’s also the ‘there’s no such thing as bad press.’ I’m not so sure if that’s true, but if it is, you’ve just got your name out to 30 million previously uninitiated people. Which is a good thing, even if the original spin has been negative. All you have to do now, is to get yourself on the Daily Show or Colbert Report. That would make you famous.

    To tobias: I think your music is just ahead of it’s time. No, don’t scoff, I’m serious. Your use of really awesome leitmotifs in in a post-operatic setting is seriously excellent (I’d call it revolutionary, but it’s been used in movies before now). You can see that it’s creeping into more ‘mainstream’ stuff, such as the new Battlestar Galactica (of which I am a HUGE fan, you should check it out).

    Also, I’ve been listening to alot of A Suite Hereafter lately. I’m going through a whole cycle of your music right now, actually. Started with Passage, now A Suite…, then I think i’m going to do the whole Continuum/One, and Broadwood thing. It’s really great. I really want to hear your new project.

  26. tobias says:

    hey sag, thanks for the energy boost. It’s always nice to know someone’s digging the music somewhere, and ‘getting it’ too. I honestly wasn’t fishing for compliments, though, as much as trying to suggest what Brooke spelled out – that Mr. Gilchrist spent so much time on the personal smear campaign that he managed to almost completely ignore some of the key aspects of a viewer’s actual experience of this series. That’s why I don’t actually agree that this review is particularly well written, despite the fact that he can form complete thoughts and grammatically correct sentences.

    You’re not the first to point me to the new Battlestar – I’ve heard it’s excellent. I’m way behind the pop culture game, so I’ll have to add it to the list (Lost, Deadwood, Carnivale), but consider it added. However, I’m pretty focused on trying to get my current creative workflow rolling – difficult while playing a four-hour jazz gig every night, with rehearsals and such on top. But I hope you’re not the only person that will want to hear (and/or read?) it if I ever get it to that point.

    No such thing as bad press? ask Mel Gibson… 8)

  27. Broken Esper says:

    All I hear from the reviewer’s bluster is the story is moving too slowly and that it’s too spiritual for him.

    What still puzzles me is why Matt from IGNCube/IGNWii never did a story on the series…

  28. Angela says:

    Goodness gracious, the things you can miss in only a couple days’ time….

  29. Ashton says:

    B – “…but this guy was taking some personal swings”
    Understatement? That seemed to be the bulk of the “review”, which was more his opinion of you than anything else. I keep going reading it thinking that I missed something. This guy actually gets paid to write this?

    Todd (IGN) – “So why, then, does he name-drop Fox, the DVD distributor, during almost every single chapter of the commentary track?”
    This comment alone should show that this guy just brushed through the DVD. I’m almost done with the commentaries and can only recall Fox being mentioned once.

    My guess is he didn’t even finish half of the series and needed something to write about, so he picked a rant about Brooke taking money from Fox to feed his followers Kool-Aid. I expected bold-faced ignorance from reviewers on the Fox distribution issue, but not from a place with a reader base as large as IGNs. I guess that nowadays, it’s too much to ask reviewers to do their homework.

  30. Guppy says:

    Exactly Ashton, exactly. The dude had a deadline, missed it. Got caught. Pissed off, and did this hasty review. Also I do not think, this guy comprehends sarcasm well, even though he tries to attempt at it himself. Silly rabbit.

  31. admin says:

    And that’s all well and good…and we can make excuses for him…but now the damage is done. 🙁

  32. Ashton says:

    B, I need to get you one of those “I’m internet famous” shirts ;). With great fame comes great… slagability? I’m afraid that the farther BS spreads, the more of these ignorant reviewers it’s going to attract :(.

    As I’m sure you know, while BS can be a massive spiritual awakening for those who are open to it, those that aren’t can see it as a massive affront to their way of life. It seems to invoke a passionate response wherever it goes, for better or worse. The attacks on your person are inexcusable (especially under the guise of a DVD review), and yes, the damage is done, but I remain hopeful that it will drive enough people to BS that will formulate their own opinion of the series and of you.

    While this kind of hap-hazard “review” should’ve been killed by editors at IGN, this is also the kind of reporting we’ve come to expect from mainstream media, and even more so from internet news. Let’s hope places like iwtnews.com can turn the tide.

  33. Zeek says:

    Another fun fact that makes Todd look stupid: He works for FOX. His company sold out in the biggest possible way to them.

  34. The Eggplant says:

    You could always try and feed negative press and cover BS up and try to get publicity that way. 😉

  35. Binary Guy says:

    I don’t usually comment but this struck me as a harsh review indeed. Although, one thing really stood out for me:

    “As a former comic book collector and current movie critic”

    I am of the opinion that most movie critics have never made a movie. Personally, that is the ultimate in hipocrisy AFIC.

    I diligently watched the online series as it became available. I bought the DVD when it became available online and will most likely buy the stover version as well. Hell, I even offered to help Brooke with posters for ComicCon. I am a reasonably-sized fan (no comments on my weight!) and I read that review with some distain, eagerly looking for any praise there was.

    As an amature film producer myself (no shameless plugs, if you want our website and stuff we’ve done so far, please e-mail me), I well understand what it takes to get things done and while the films we have done are not anywhere near as close to the scale of BS, I could not ever possilbly slag the BS crew for what they were trying to accomplish. In fact, I applaud their ability to get the ‘establishment’ to distribute ‘non-establishment’ sentiments.

    “That’s irony….I said that’s irony son!”

  36. Binary Guy says:

    DOH! Aparently, anything with a greater-than symbols is ignored.

    That last comment should say

    /insert Foghorn Leghorn/
    “That’s irony….I said that’s irony son!”

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