Backlog Dialogues

Backlog Dialogues is the nerd culture podcast where we dig you out of your backlog, BEFORE it buries you. We attempt to bring a literary eye to nerd culture media, like video games, films, TV shows, and more. Think of us like a book club, but for video games and other types of media. Our first backlog-buster is: Kingdom Hearts!

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Wednesday Oct 12, 2022

It's time for the big dramatic set piece at the middle of Kingdom Hearts 2, the Battle for Hollow Bastion! Final Fantasy characters are all over the place again this week, opening the door for some amazing memetic lines. But before we can get in on the action, an annoyingly long and even more annoyingly important extra scene added to Final Mix completely kills the pace. After that we beat Demyx, Goofy dies and revives in a matter of minutes, and the face of our big bad for this game, Xemnas, is finally revealed! Plus, you'll never GUESS who pulls a hero move!

Wednesday Oct 19, 2022

Due to technical complications, this episode is a rerecording of an episode that you'll never get to hear! Don't worry, this version is better anyway. It's the start of the Kingdom Hearts 2 World Tour, as we speed run through very flimsy revisit world plots. We start in Land of the Dragons and accomplish nothing of note but do meet Xigbar and maaaaybe Riku? In Beast's Castle we go through some weird Beauty and the Beast fanfic while dealing with the least important member of Organization XIII, Xaldin. In Port Royal we touch base with the freakish facsimiles and meet Luxord. And finally in Olympus Coliseum we take part in the Hades Cup and rescue Auron from a fate worse than death: being immortalized as a Funko Pop.

Wednesday Oct 26, 2022

Time for round two of Disney World Revisit Speedrun! We start in Agrabah to finish the Return of Jafar story with some annoying flying carpet minigames. Then we visit Halloweentown to find that no matter what, Jack Skellington is unable to quit Christmas. Back in the Pride Lands we continue to grapple with just how powerful Scar is, even in death. And in Space Paranoids we confront the Master Control Program to restore Hollow Bastion to its true name as we build to the finale of Kingdom Hearts 2.

Wednesday Nov 02, 2022

It's part one of a two part finale for Kingdom Hearts 2! While we were mucking around in Disney Worlds, Hayner, Pence, and Olette were figuring out the plot, and found us a way to The World That Never Was! We bid farewell to Axel and deal with the roughest fight in the main story for Kingdom Hearts 2 Final Mix: Roxas. Then we get super indulgent and devote roughly half an episode to discussing one scene. Do Nobodies have hearts? What is a heart anyway? And why is DiZ such a dick? The answers to some of these questions may be in this episode!

Wednesday Nov 09, 2022

It's time for part two of our World That Never Was extravaganza! We take the fight to the Organization's main base to finish off Xigbar, Luxord, and Saix, discover why exactly Riku looks like Ansem and what other shit he's been up to, discover the 'secret' identity of DiZ as Ansem the Wise, and take on Xemnas in an epic multipart final battle! We would have had a secret ending but John refused to do Atlantica. We'll see how long that lasts.

Wednesday Nov 16, 2022

It's the completion episode for Kingdom Hearts 2! First we try our damnest to talk about Atlantica and even as we do our discussions meander off in to other places. Nice try, John. Then we visit the Hundred Acre Woods for existentialism, alchoholism, and drug induced vision quests with Winnie the Pooh. We do a sweep of all the assorted minigames in the world, including a sidequest to beat up a bunch of mysterious black cloaked mushrooms. Finally, we finish with a sweep of the hard content, starting with Sephiroth. Then we take trip through one of the hardest optional dungeons in gaming, the Cavern of Rememberance, and its absurd trash hallway, the Transport to Rememberance. At the end of the hall we find data battle rematches against all the members of Organization XIII, and finish off with one of the best optional fights in gaming, Lingering Will.

Wednesday Nov 23, 2022

It's our second Minilog, talking about one of our favorite games, the cult hit indie JRPG Cross Code! And we manage to avoid making jokes about balls!
Follow the not-so-silent protagonist Lea through her adventure in the game-within-a-game Cross Worlds as she traverses cool jumping puzzles and complex puzzle dungeons, solves the Zelda problem with some excellent game design, and goes through one of the most satisfying video game stories to date about what makes a person. If you haven't played this game yet, dear listener, you really need to.

Wednesday Nov 30, 2022

CONTENT WARNING - This episode contains some discussion of suicide and suicide ideation.
This season of Backlog Dialogues Kingdom Hearts, we're turning our attention to the prequels, and where better to start than the tragedy of Roxas during his time at Organization XIII? That's right, it's 358/2 Days, where we spend all day visiting Disney worlds to do same-y missions and all evening hanging out on the clocktower eating ice cream. Or we would do the first one if this wasn't mercifully just a cutscene compilation, thus we get to only go over the good bits! We really dig into Axel as a character in this one, and meet yet another person that came from Sora: the mysterious 14th organization member, Xion. We also delve in to just how much an abusive cult leader Xemnas is, and most importantly, we truly and finally lay to rest the most important question: Do Nobodies have Hearts? (spoiler alert, they do)(Also DiZ is a dick)

Wednesday Dec 07, 2022

It's the prologue to Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep! We discuss how the game works as usual, and then dive in to some scenes without much context before we get to meet our new trio of heroes, Ventus, Terra, and Aqua as we get the opening act to the tragedy that will recontextualize all we have seen thus far and set up the story that is to come.

Wednesday Dec 14, 2022

Let's start Terra's story in Birth By Sleep! After breaking down the specific character controls, we get right to the core of our new bad decisions man, here just in time to replace Riku. Terra fumbles his way through Enchanted Dominion, Castle of Dreams, and the Dwarf Woodland, being picked out as an easy mark by every card-carrying villain Disney has to offer, and some new ones too! John has a hard time telling the difference between Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. Many tangents are had. Xehanort looks like a nice guy.

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