Pokemon! Grunge! Link!!!

Shigeru Miyamoto talks 'Legend of Zelda' and his favorite 'Mariokart' character

Last year, The Legend of Zelda celebrated its 25th anniversary with the release of Skyward Sword, a critical success that is also the fastest-selling Zelda game in franchise history. It’s impressive enough for any franchise to last that long — all the more so in the videogame industry, which has seen whole empires rise and fall in just a few decades of existence. But even more intriguing is that Zelda was merely the second franchise to hit that benchmark: The previous year, Super Mario turned 25 with the release of Super Mario Galaxy 2, another critical success that became one of the Wii’s top-selling titles.

And although every videogame is a massive undertaking — requiring hundreds of people working thousands of overtime hours — it’s fair to say that one man hovers over both franchises. Shigeru Miyamoto has been a major creative force at Nintendo since the dawn of the videogame era, and his achievements run from the primordial 8-bit era through the steady graphics evolution of the ’90s right up to the modern era of mobile gaming. Miyamoto got on the phone (via translator) with EW to talk about recent Nintendo releases. When asked about any upcoming projects he might (or might not) be working on, Miyamoto said — with what sounded like a smile on his face — “I’m sorry. I need to refrain from saying anything.”

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: I just completed Skyward Sword, which really makes good use of the Motion Plus controller. Can you talk a little bit about how existence of Motion Control changes the development process of these videogames?

SHIGERU MIYAMOTO: First of all, thank you for completing Skyward Sword. You probably know more than I do when it comes to the game, because the version I played was actually the prototype. The version I played through was more challenging than the version you did.

The very first Legend of Zelda game for Wii was Twilight Princess. At the time when we were designing the Wii remote, we were thinking about incorporating the pointer functionality into the new Legend of Zelda game. I think, to some extent, our efforts worked out. For example: When players were trying to aim at some objects in order to shoot an arrow, or fire the hookshot, we came up with something really handy. Unfortunately, when the player was required to take a sudden and immediate action, and aim at something with a pointer, it took some time. And Link could not perfectly reproduce whatever you were doing.

We really wanted to do that. With the Wii Motion Sensing technology, it became possible. So we were able to incorporate the real sword-fight feature. It’s not like you’re just fighting by freely waving your sword. [In Skyward Sword], you need to see how your opponent is acting. You’re taking into consideration your opponent’s movements. It’s actually a real sword fight!

You said that you had played an earlier version of Skyward Sword that was more challenging. How much more difficult was it?

As the development period goes on, we get accustomed to the content and the gameplay and the riddles and whatnot. The developer is almost always thinking, “It’s too easy for me. It must be too easy for the player, as well.” The same with designing bosses: Because the developers are supposed to be very, very skillful in challenging these tough enemies, they often make the boss too tough. It’s a dilemma we always have as developers.
In Skyward Sword, there’s a magic stone that will give the player hints if he gets lost. It reminds me of the Super Guide/Cosmic Guide function in New Super Mario Bros. Wii and Mario Galaxy 2. Now, when I was a kid, I spent days trying to beat some of the difficult levels in Super Mario Bros. 3. If you could go back in time, would you create similar guide functions in those games?

Back in those days, the ways in which we could entertain people in the videogame world were rather limited. And because of that, [having the gamers] find out any and all the solutions themselves was one of the most important elements. Today, there are many, many ways to entertain people in one single videogame. And the Internet has made it so easy for people to ask for clues. We are mindful of that changing circumstance. Whenever we are making the game, we are making it for those who really need and want to know about a solution or a hint. But there are those who do not want to ask for those kind of hints. They really want to solve any riddles or challenges for himself, for herself. We are mindful of both of these types of people whenever we are making these games today.

If I understand the ending of Skyward Sword correctly, it’s supposed to be the prequel of the entire Legend of Zelda franchise. Is the chronology and story of the franchise something that interests you, or are you more focused on gameplay?

Story is very important for Zelda. In terms of the priority order, first of all, of course, is making the best possible game ever over anything else. Second, we are doing best to make the story consistent throughout the entire series. Hopefully people won’t point out any contradictions.

Both Mario and Zelda have celebrated their 25th anniversary. What’s it like to still be working on these franchises so many years later?

When I first worked on the very first Mario game, I thought I would make Mario again and again, so that it would grow in conjunction with the technology. Mickey Mouse is a character that grew with the evolution of animation technology and motion picture technology. I thought that maybe I could do the same thing with Mario — he would be the character who grew with the evolution of digital technology. But I didn’t know if Mario could really be appealing to fans. The fact that Super Mario could celebrate the 25th anniversary last year might be the testament that people are appreciating it.

What is a typical day for you like when you’re working on big games like this? Or are you working on several different games at once?

At any given time, I am overseeing approximately seven titles at once. When one game is coming to the final tune-up period — the final development completion period — I I need to concentrate on one game, regardless sof how many other titles I am overseeing. Other than that period, I’m often involved in taking care of the basic control system of any software titles. Usually, my day goes by seeing a lot of the data. I play the prototype myself, and give the feedback to developers via e-mail.

Looking ahead, as part of the release of the Wii U, you’ll be working on Pikmin 3. Are you excited to bring that back as part of the new console?

Originally, I was making Pikmin 3 would be launched on the Wii platform. Because the Wii U is capable of HD quality pictures, and will be accompanied by the subscreen on your hand. I thought that I would be able to make a Pikmin that was closer to my ideal. I am now actually enjoying myself, working on the game.

I have an important question. Nintendo has also just released Mariokart 7 for the 3DS. In every iteration of Mariokart, I’ve always preferred to play as Toad. Who’s your favorite character?

That’s the most challenging question! I’m sorry that I cannot come up with an interesting answer. Somehow, it’s habit to me, but I play with Mario. He’s a very balanced character.

Who’s your least favorite character?

Toad. [Laughs]

My favorite character is your least favorite character?

I understand that he has some popularity. Somehow.

Last question: In a couple of different Zelda games, there’s a mysterious hand that appears that’s never really explained. In Skyward Sword, the hand appears in a toilet. Can you explain to me what that hand is?

In the original Legend of Zelda game, a gigantic hand appears and grabs you at the entrance to a dungeon. Actually, that has nothing to do with Skyward Sword. [Laughs] It’s actually something from a Japanese ghost story. Not a specific ghost story. There are some ghost stories in Japan where — when you are sitting in the bathroom in the traditional style of the Japanese toilet — a hand is actually starting to grab you from beneath. It’s a very scary story.

There certainly have been a fair few games starring those famous Japanesse born Pocket monsters. The Pokémon phenomenon peaked in popularity around the turn of the millennium, and still retain a firm following today. The main titles have filled our gaming lives with hours upon hours of handheld RPG fun with there various coloured installments since 1996.

Developers GameFreak are the proud creators of the wildly popular franchise, taking it on themselves to produce each of the main game titles. The problem comes from other developers who purchase the rights. Obviously there are some great uses of the franchise, allowing fans to deepen their relationship with the creatures, some note worthy examples, are the Pokémon anima TV series, the Pokémon Movies (which still going, now on there 14th installment) and the Pokémon Trading Cards (produced by Creatures Inc, who also own part of the rights to Pokémon along with GameFreak). But as we’ll soon find out there are meny games that take the franchise and create some irrelevant and unnecessary games that do nothing to deepen the Pokémon universe, flesh out the story or even bare any resemblance to the main titles. Just remember that the main games are about a player who ensembles and levels up a team of creatures by battle others.

Before we start, a quick note; we’ve had to let a few go, a top ten sounds better, but honorable mentions go to Pokémon Channel, Pokémon Puzzle Challenge and Pokémon Project Studio, you really did suck as games but just didn’t make it onto the top ten, sorry guys. There are a few other sequels and prequels to the games on the list that basically do the same as the originals. Also a big shout out to Battle & Get! Pokémon Typing DS, to be fair, this one was only released in Japan but that doesn’t make it any less hilarious As you can imagine it’s about typing, it comings with a full keyboard add-on. The player must type the on screen letters fast enough as Pokémon bounce towards them. This title makes me feel sorry for everyone involved, at any stage:

Without further ado, here it is WhatCulture’s definitive run down of the Pokémon games that didn’t need to be made:

10. PokéPark Wii: Pikachu’s Adventure

Let's Just Pick all the Cutest Pokémon and Make Them Hold Hands and Get Along

Ok so maybe even the main games are aimed at kids after all, but they are not simple or childish, at the core there is relatively complex RPG system. Yes, some Pokémon are cute and brightly coloured, but the generation that found them cool have grown up a little since the late 90’s. So why is PokéPark Wii: Pikachu’s Adventure, aimed at mentally challenged two years olds?

The player controls Pikachu, the reluctant poster child for the Pokémon world, as he attempts to save the world. Pikachu has to travel about the place to find bits of a “Sky Prism”, because the badass that is Mew asked him to, not sure why Mew could do this himself, probably hungover or just lazy. But anyway if Pikachu fails the sky will fall in, so Pika has to do a bunch of mini-games with his Poké pals.

Nice Empty Open Spaces to Explore

The game makes out as though Pokémon are friendly critters that just want to have fun, but I know from the main games that they want nothing more than to smash each others brains in with rocks or peck an opponents eye out. I’ve seen Pokémon electrocute each other unconscious, i’ve seen Pokémon nearly drown from a hydro blast, and here this game is trying to tell me that all they do is play around all day holding hands, no, just no, I’ve seen to much to believe their lies.

9. Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red/Blue Rescue Team

Just Havin' a Chat

In this one, the human character wakes up as a Pokémon (unlikely) and you go around town chatting to all the other pocket creatures. Apparently the rapture is coming so there are lots of natural disasters happening and the only viable form of employment is to start a rescue team, to earn rescue point (useful right?) buy completing jobs in dungeons, what?

Who needed this game, who though; “I’ve just spent 50 hours of my life on Pokémon Ruby, I need more, but playing as a human was boring and so was completing a relatively logical story, I want to start a squad that deals with the aftermaths environmental catastrophes in a dungeon setting or something”.

This one is annoying, it does the same thing that happens in a lot of the extra content, it anthropomorphises Pokémon, it takes these creatures that aren’t even capable of saying anything other than their own name and it pretends they can run a society. It gives Pokémon names like Gerry, as you engage them in small talk, they run shops as if they are proficient in stock management. It’s also greedy, not happy with being on just one console generation it straddles two, the Red version is for the Game Boy Advanced and the Blue version is for the DS, so if you do want to catch them all, you need to spend loads of money no new consoles.

8. Pokémon Stadium

Fire vs Water? Silly Move There Charizard

Watching your Pokemon battle it out in full 3D 64-bit glory sounded like a good idea on paper, but paper is a fallible thing. In reality a series of slow, repetitive, non-eventful, turn-based fights on your Nintendo 64, was disappointing at best. For some reason the developers didn’t think it would be important to include any sort of story line, as if the fun in the main games come from just the battles, and all the rest of that stuff was irrelevant.

Although the Pokémon looked great (by N64 standards) the stadiums and arenas where incredible bland and bleak. A battle starts with Poké Balls thrown into a large empty space, two Pokémon pop out and fight, with nothing else around them– not exactly a feast for the eyes there Nintendo. There is a commentator who tries his hardest to inject some sort of excitement to the preceding but his voice and choice of words repeated over and over each battle become very annoying very quickly.

I can Feel The Excitement

The only potentially redeeming feature was the ability to transfer Pokémon from the Game Boy main games, but this was only in North America. The dream of seeing my beloved Poké-friends battle on a bigger screen sounded great, and I’m sure it was, but for some reason those racists at Nintendo hate the europeans, with a passion, I assume.

In much the same way that books are generally better than there film adaptations, it turns out that Pokémon battles are better left to the imagination.

7. Pokemon Link

It’s a kind decision to exclude Pokémon Pinball from the list, on the grounds that every game franchise ever, has a pinball game somewhere: Sonic Pinball Party, Kirby’s Pinball Land and The Pinball of the Dead to name a few. What could not be excused is Pokemon Link or Pokemon Trozei, for the DS, if you are from anywhere in the world outside of Europe. If you haven’t played this one, don’t worry, it’s nothing to do with Pokémon, and that’s just the problem. This Tetris style puzzler could have used any sort of branding, but went for our friends the Pokémon. This isn’t the worst game of the list but it certainly is irrelevant to the Pokémon world.

Cruel I Know, This What happens When You Crush Pokémon On Top of Each Other

In this title the player must force Pokémon on top of each other, tightly packing them together like battery farmed chickens, with total disregard for Poké-rights and well being. I am a supporter and campaigner for free range Pokémon, which is why this game makes me sick.

So I get that there are lots of Pokémon and that can lend it’s self well to a join the blocks puzzle game, but apart from that there is no reason for this Pokémon abuse.

6. Pokémon Rumble

In the WiiWare title Pokémon Rumble you play as a toy Pokémon, wait –why would I want to play as a toy Pokemon, as if Pokemon are real in the first place. The “toy” Pokémon look and behave just as a “real” one would. I guess this is just a half hearted attempt to convince parents that there it isn’t really a violent game.

A Lot of The Game Looks Like This; Dull

The main Pokémon series is a strategic minefield in which the player must carefully balance his selection of Pokémon against the opponents abilities, leveling up and evolving, in order to make it through the tricky RPG gameplay. In Pokémon Rumble all you need to do it button mash your way through linear environments to get to the next trampoline thing. Playing as a Pokémon you attack anything that standing in you way on your quest to… ummm …well, be a better Pokémon. The game plays as mindless fun similar to the popular Smash TV, that is to say popular in the early 1990’s and is laughable simple by todays standards.

5. Pokemon Snap

I Don't Want to Photograph Within A Game!

A popular title at the time of it’s release, with many of us excited to see Pokémon for the first time in 3D on a home console. The game promised a full 3D world populated by all of favorite Pokémon, just waiting to be explored, and it delivered this, kinda. The was set in a 3D island with Pokémon bouncing around but who wants to play what is essentially an on-rails shooter, in which you can only shoot in the photographic sense. Ok game, you want me to take pictures of Pokemon with my camera…why? I could shoot them with a gun, they are not real, “Pokémon Hunter” would have been awesome. Cameras in games have always been a weird idea for me, cameras capture something from the real world in a way that enhances it, so you can say stuff like “I was there” or doesn’t it look pretty.A picture is worth a thousand world, but what the hell is a picture of a Pokémon in a game supposed to tell me. So that I can have convosations like this: “Let me see you photos bro, aww thats a sweet jiggly puff pic”.

Apparently EVERY Pokémon Loves Apples

The game was made up of 6 different levels, or courses, each one a different environment, allowing for a variety of Pokémon to be immortalised in film. As the photographer you where able to throw apples at the unsuspecting wild animals, either to attract them or to hit them in there silly Poké heads, the closes thing to fun in the whole game.

4. Pokémon Trading Card Game

Your Doing It Wrong

There where a few points during my school years when it was perfectly acceptable to approach a few pupil that you may have never met and greet them with the phrase “What you got?”. A simple and direct question that skips over the niceties, designed to let the other child know that you wished to view their collection. This phrase was applied (to a kid growing up in Reading) to Football trading cards of 1996, followed by POG’s 1997 and my beloved Pokémon trading cards circa 2000. The last big fad that I engaged in at school, I still proudly keep my card collection, in the hope that someday, someone rich big shot will pay real money for a tattered shiny Riachu or Blastios.

...Playing With Fictional Cards

The joy of trading cards came from the social intersection and the ability to barter your way to a better deck. The physical nature of the cards themselves, the joy of ownership as a child. The ability to improve your collection and show others, battling friends with your new shinys.

Why then did anyone decide to make this past time (that already is based on characters from a game) back into a game. Unless you were one of those weird home-school kids or you just didn’t have any friends, there is no excise for this game. If you couldn’t afford cards, how could you afford a game worth way more than I ever spent on the cards? If you want to play a Pokémon game, play the main series, a critically acclaimed RPG masterpiece, not a digital card game more sad than crying yourself to sleep on a friday night.

3. Hey You, Pikachu!

Kinda Like Seaman For the Dreamcast But Even Worse

Ever wanted to talk to Pikachu? No? Well nows your chance! Hey You, Pikachu is perhaps not the best idea in the first place and it is also poorly implemented, the resulted is a truly terrible game. If you consider that voice recognition technology today is still and little unreliable at best, this game from over 10 years ago for the Nintendo 64 (one of only two games for the system that attempted to you voice recognition, the other being a Japanese train simulator called Densha de Go! 64) was a mess of shouting and frustration as you try in vein to get the microphone to understand anything you say.

As the game gives you the ability to talk to a creature that can only reply with his own name; conversations go as follows:

Me: Pikachu quick we need to save the world, team rocket are trying to capture and enslave your friends

Pikachu: Pikachu!

Me: …Ok, is that a yes? we better hurry

Pikachu: Pika

Me: Yes, yes that’s your name, but right now there are more important things than you or me, lets go

pokemon: Piiiiiika!

Me: What is wrong with you? Your fellow Pokemon are in trouble and all you do it turn your head in that cute way!

Pikachu: PiiiiiiKaaaaaa!

Me: …

Pikachu: Piiii…

Me: Fuuuuu! Just shut up!!!

2. Pokémon Dash

Zapdos Would Kill Them All

This one is a good example of a franchise sneaking into genres where it’s not welcome, this is a Pokémon racing game. As if the idea of racing the creatures rather that forcing you Pokémon to fight doesn’t sound bad enough, the way in which you race them is by frantically motioning in the desired direction on your DS’s touch screen, as if your Nintendog’s on heat…really have a look yourself here. Also surely some Pokémon are faster than others, I would just choose Ninjask or Jolteon and win every race, unfortunately you are limited to only play as the small rat Pokémon with average speed that is Pikachu.

The game doesn’t even try to make a good effort of creating a half decent Pokémon racer. Heavily relying on parents or just silly kids that don’t use game reviews, to notice the colourful Poké cover art. The game is a top-down racer, a genre not popular since the days of the Emiga, it abuses the touch screen of the DS and only takes about three hours to complete… everything.

Yep, A Racing Game that You Can Only See 3 2 Meters Infront

1. My Pokémon Ranch

*Face Palm*

Do you remember when you first played Pokemon, back in the ’90’s when you beat that first gym leader and thought “Some day, I wanna own a ranch and have all my beloved Pokemon walk around peacefully and aimlessly…” No? Me neither, no-one did.

The idea is that you upload your Pokémon from Diamond and Pearl, then they get to live on a farm on your Wii as they are rendered in Mii-style 3D. The Pokémon can walk about and interact with the creepy dead-eyed version of yourself known as a Mii. There isn’t much else to do, you can’t fight or level up your Pokémon, you can take photographs of them (same crap different game) and print them out on your computer. This is barely a game, there is nothing to do apart from look at your Pokémon and be happy.

Happy, Fun, Clappy, Rainbow Time

Developed by Tokyo based Ambrella who are also responsible for such titles as Hey You, Pikachu, Pokémon Dash and Pokémon Rum..ble… woah! wait a sec, these guys made four our of this top ten! It’s as if they were created solely to make poor quality and irrelevant Pokémon spin-offs, it’s a conspiracy! The guys at GameFreak should go round there and sort this out, a big of violence can be a good thing sometimes.

Looks Fun Right?

My Pokémon Range is a Wiiware title available for download for just 700wii points or which ever fake money Nintendo use to trick you that you arn’t really spend your hard earned cash. I strongly advise everyone in the world, including the most hardcore Pokémon fan to avoid this game. It really has nothing to do with the original titles, much like most of this list, appart from the name and the characters. Anyway, this has been an emotional journey, lets end on a picture of Ash and Pikachu from the animate series looking happy:

Stone Roses, Trainspotting and the grunge look: the 90s revival is here

Between the whitewashed walls of Visions Video Bar, a London club, a crush of brothel creepers and flannel shirts throws spry shapes in the air as Nas's N.Y State of Mind segues deftly into Camp Lo's Luchini. "Tune!" howls a boy in a peaked cap to his girlfriend with an undercut.

London in the 90s? Wrong. This is Dalston in east London last weekend.

For many of us, the 90s was a decade imbued with anti-fashion, grunge and naff hair, one that has so far proved mercifully resistance to a revival. But with the return of "Madchester" stalwarts the Stone Roses, a proliferation of grunge on the catwalk and yet another sequel to American Pie, it seems that the 90s are enjoying a revival.

From art to literature via fashion and music, 2012 will see the 90s repurposed with a new wave of nostalgia. April will see Damien Hirst's first UK retrospective, with the focus on his work from the early 90s, including his pickled animals. In literature, meanwhile, Irvine Welsh's Skagboys, the prequel to Trainspotting, which tracks Mark Renton's initial descent into heroin addiction, is also out in April. On the catwalk, shirts are oversized and flannel, while archetypal 90s label Versace is back doing couture for the first time in 15 years.

For some a doting attitude towards the decade isn't that surprising. "Trends have a tendency to move in 20-year cycles," says Johnny Davies, deputy editor of Esquire and former editor of The Face. "In retrospect, we've come to realise that the 1990s was a very fertile period."

DJ and festival curator Rob Da Bank, who came to prominence during the 90s, perfectly understand the revival: "For me, the 1990s doesn't seem that long ago. Why? Because it shaped a lot of what I have been doing for the past few years. The reason I still book acts like Orbital and De La Soul [at his festival, Bestival] is because there is still a demand to see them. For a lot of people, the music transcended a time and a place."

But the difference is that this resurgence is binary. Not only is the revival being driven by those who lived it first time around; it is also being repurposed by those who didn't, for whom this decade is retro rather than remembered. Charlie Lyne, editor of the feted UK-based movie blog UltraCulture, holds "a huge affection for the 1990s", even though he was born in 1991.

Men in Black III, Scary Movie 5 and a follow-up to American Pie will all hit cinemas this year. So what's the appeal of the sequels? "It was a golden age in cinema for teenagers. Scream, Clueless, films like that were just as sly and arch in their message as new films like Juno and Superbad, but without the irony. Teen films nowadays seem to be either too clever or too stupid."

"It's a double comeback," agrees Alex Miller, executive editor of vice uk, a yardstick for youth culture. "I was 16 when Parklife came out and while I'm still into it, I'm also into reincarnations of that era." Miller namechecks new artist Grimes, "whose sound resembles Aphex Twin", and James Blake, "who definitely references 90s Bristolian trip-hop artists like Portishead and Tricky".

Perhaps pivotal in the decade's revival, adds Davies, is that artists who grew up in that decade have finally come of influential age: "Much in the same way that the revival of Doctor Who was governed by Doctor Who fans from the past, it's those who grew up in the 90s who are now the ones influencing popular culture," he says.

Acclaimed Liverpudlian menswear designer Christopher Shannon is one such product of the 90s whose lauded SS12 collection, a myriad of geometric prints and rucksacks, is hugely reminiscent of Brooklyn hip-hop from that era. "I'm not a revivalist, but a chunk of that decade has stayed with me," he says, adding: "I was 10 when the 90s arrived and I'm sure in processing those images in a pure, childlike way, I was perhaps subconsciously inspired by it."

Kay Barron, fashion features editor at Harpers Bazaar, thinks the 90s revival has been brewing for a few seasons, but "its moment is now".

She adds: "The decade was all about extremes, and that is what we are seeing again now. Where Versace were bringing out the supermodels and sending them down the catwalk in neon, at the same time Marc Jacobs was inventing grunge with flannel shirts and beanies.

"Now that divide has appeared again, but the most obvious example is that the dreaded mule [which was the power-dressing shoe of choice], as seen at Louis Vuitton and Miu Miu, is battling it out with hi-tops by Marc and Pierre Hardy."

For spring/summer 2012, D&G sent their models down the catwalk in signature 90s printed handkerchiefs worn as dresses and Isabel Marant successfully repurposed 90s style hi-top trainers alongside oversized flannel shirts. This week the face of Bart Simpson will appear on avant-garde designer Jeremy Scott's autumn/winter 2012 collection at New York fashion week.

Perhaps most tellingly of all, the decade's "supers" are also back. Roberto Cavalli's campaign stars Naomi Campbell and last week Yasmin Le Bon was announced as the face of Joseph Ribkoff's spring 2012 collection. Helena Christensen is modelling for Reebok and Linda Evangelista is on the cover of this month's Love magazine.

Start-Smith agrees that the 90s revival in fashion chimes with the current social mood: "In many ways it's about validating ourselves. These women remind our generation of a certain time and it makes my generation feel relevant."

Music is another case in point. Just as bands from the last decade or so – Franz Ferdinand, Interpol – were influenced by the 80s, modern music is also being influenced by the 90s. Azealia Banks – whose sound is reminiscent of 90s rapper Missy Elliott – as well as singer Frank Ocean have successfully revived a 90s-style "slow jam" style.

Adding to this saturation are the reformed bands from that period. Since the Stone Roses announced their comeback tour, other Madchester bands, including the Happy Mondays, Inspiral Carpets and the Farm have also announced comebacks. NKOTBSB, a perturbing amalgamation of late 90s boybands New Kids on the Block and the Backstreet Boys, are also pedalling their ballads on a global tour this spring. "It seems the notion of bands reforming has lost its stigma and finally become acceptable," says Davies.

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I hope you are all having a good weekend so far, it is cloudy and cold here in NYC bbbrrrrrrr