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McAdams On: 2016 - TvTechnology

McAdams On: 2016

The year of living vicariously
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THE PRESENT—Welcome to 2016, the year of the new Holladek™ VR Headset, which will transport you so completely beyond actual human contact you will never again leave the house so feed the cats.

Our friends at the Consumer Technology Association tell us that virtual reality gear will surge 500 percent this year, with sales reaching 1.2 million of these brain-tricking headwraps that look like something you would have been horrified to wear in school but had to because you were cockeyed.

You see pictures of young dudes wearing these things gesticulating in only the most manly way, all calm smile and relaxed jaw. Let me be clear, however, when I say that you do not look like that in a VR headset. You look like a crazy person grabbing at invisible things with some sort of diagnostic device attached to your maniacally grinning head. But fear not. We’ll get used to this like we got used to people talking to themselves on Blueteeth.

We are a hardy people.

Fashion houses should get in on this. A cat-eye and a couple of rhinestones would go a long way. Soon, the Kardashians will pop up around Hollywood in them obviously being someplace much cooler. Like Brentwood but really Venice Beach.

VR holds great promise for cinema. I say that because Fox did a VR clip of “Wild” that sat you on a log in the middle of the Sierra Nevada between Reese Witherspoon and Laura Dern, with a little red fox running by, because aren’t those engineers clever? Yes. Yes, they are. It was superlative cool. I imagine the camera looks like a fly eyeball piping video into a homemade Cray, knowing that outfit. Now, it’s a matter of finding where production costs intersect with user fees, because 1.2 million is a pretty fair audience share.

Meanwhile, in James Cameronland, coders are doing a VR version of “Avatar.” We hope.