Saturday, February 04, 2006

Not much evolution....   posted by Razib @ 2/04/2006 03:31:00 AM

Last month there were over 8,000 entries to this website via the referer "Kate Beckinsale" vs. 3,500 for "Keira Knightly." Normally Keira kicks ass, so I was a little surprised...but then I realized that Underworld Evolution is out. I'm not a big movie watcher, but my friend at MIT told me that Underworld was a good flick in about 5 words, and well, MIT students know how to be smart, so I figured that I should weight his opinion more than some fluffy Harvard student who could string 1,000 words together explaining how it was schlock. So I did watch Underworld and Underworld Evolution. First, if you want to see the "nude" scene in the second film, go here. You aren't missing much, it was really hard to see anything worth seeing. But as I said, MIT students know how to be smart, and the first film was shockingly coherent (note that the bar here is low, so if Kate in skin tights killin' and beatin' ain't your thang, don't get the DVD). Chris Mooney, my neighbor at Science Blogs, aired the possibility of the second movie distorting evolution. I can't speak to that, while Underworld overperformed above & beyond expectation, Underworld Evolution drowned me in irrelevant backstory, so I really wasn't trying to figure out how evolution fit into all of this (I assume something about hybridization). I do get the distinct impression that it isn't a good idea to eat the bread at a seedy Transylvanian bar (that's a spoiler), and that the tetrapod body plan is shockingly easy to distort via viral infection, but that was about it. I would have liked to see the actress that played Amelia, Zita Gorog (work safe pic), more. Not only is she hot, but she has a name that is apropos for the Whore of Babylon, or the mother of Gog and Magog. Oh, and if anyone has found a good timeline for these movies, shout out in the comments box, I thought there was a reference to 1,400 years, but nothing seems to go back further than around 1,000.

Oh, and Kate Beckinsale is 1/8 Burmese. Since inheritance isn't blending, and the number of traits we use to judge "race" isn't super large, assume there to be variance in the range in appearence of people who are 1/8 anything that is very different from the other 7/8. You could say that Kate's relative swarthiness is a clue to her ancestry, but she is as dark as many Englishwomen.

Update: I suspect many of you will enjoy The Faces of Tomorrow, where they take the faces of citizens from various regions and make composites. As usual, the averaged out faces are much more attractive. Via NuSapiens.