Man vs Snake:The Long and Twisted Tale of Nibbler

Hypothetical Netflix Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

In 1984, arcade games were huge. One game, which before this documentary I didn’t know existed, Nibbler, boasted the fact that a player could score a billion points. Several tried to beat a billion, several failed. Till Tim McVey. It took him forty-four hour to do it on a single quarter. He was a king in 1984.

Then, 20 years pass.

The record was no longer his.

This is Tim’s story.

While I was watching this documentary, I could help but look at it as a companion piece to 2007’s The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters, not only because of theme, but because a couple of the people from King of Kong show up in Man vs Snake. Walter Day, the founder of Twin Galaxies, a company which keeps track of video game world records, and Billy Mitchell, King of Kong‘s narrative antagonist, both show up as supporting characters to Tim McVey. The doc unfolds similarly to King of Kong. This time around, they use assuming animated sequences to show what happened in the past, which reminded kinda of Bob’s Burgers.

This is a redemption story. It’s a story about how a single accomplishment, no matter how seemingly stupid to some it might seem, still counts for something. It’s how setting goals, and more importantly, reaching them and beating them.


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