Dragonbored is the Walkers' contribution to The Uncanny Valley.Carl Custer is very fond of playing The Aura Scrolls: Skyguard. Well, perhaps he's a bit more than just fond. OK, he's addicted. This addiction is ruining his life, as his job is in grave danger, and his co-workers and girlfriend beg him to put the game down and do something more important.Then, one day, his avatar, Jimbroth, somehow gets zapped into the real world. Hilarity ensues as Carl tries to keep the barbarian warrior under control and from stealing what is left of his life.Watch it here.
It provides examples of:
Ascended Fridge Horror: Jimbroth mentions a couple times how quite a lot of his friends die in-game. Oh, and he's programmed to feel pain.
An Aesop: Real life, rather than Escapism, is more exciting than you think it is.
Double Aesop: Value what you have, otherwise you will push it away, often to someone more deserving.
Space Whale Aesop: Some scenes qualify. For example, the scene where Carl brags about teaching Jimbroth to cook through gameplay (rather than spending the same amount of time actually learning how to do it) is actually a pretty good message about how to use time effectively. However, there's a similar scene later where Jimbroth presents Jessica with an amulet which he and Carl earned from grinding through a dungeon. Carl found the amulet useless after grinding for so long for it, but Jimbroth tells a heart-wrenching story about how he earned it after many of his friends died and vowed only to give it to the pure of heart. That pushes the scene into this trope because there is no way Carl could have gotten such an amulet, under the conditions he did, except through a videogame, and Jimbroth's own personal connection to it is (at best) part of a personal story that would not exist without said game. Somewhat downplayed, in that Jimbroth didn't know that.
And I Must Scream: Carl ends up trapped in a world where unless he is freed, is doomed to painfully die over and over again forever. Not to mention Jimbroth stated that Taylin was playing his character which also means that Carl has no control over his actions.
In the end Carl takes this to its next step and wishes to live in the game world. Therein he repeatedly and painfully dies.
Bland-Name Product: Skyguard is clearly meant to be Skyrim (they are even using modded footage from Skyrim), The Aura Scrolls is meant to be The Elder Scrolls, and Mephesto is meant to represent Bethesda, the creators of the game and the franchise. Heck, the title of the short, Dragonbored is based off of the name of the Player Character of the real game, the Dragonborn. Additionally, Skyguard was released on the PSZ.
Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: Jimbroth believes women are bold, beautiful, angelic, and occasionally property to be sold as men see fit.
The goose that Jimbroth prepares for dinner is free-range, local, and was cleaned in the toilet.
Brick Joke: When Carl discovers a head in the oven, he throws it out the window before his girlfriend sees. Later a fisherman finds it.
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: By the end, Jimboth settles into his job, but he retains some of his fantasy game mannerisms.
Cassandra Truth: When Carl tries to tell Jessica about bringing Jimbroth into the world, she is dismissive, as she thinks he is bragging about his in-game accomplishments.
Cloud Cuckoolander: What Jimbroth comes off as in the real world. All things considered, in his world he would have been completely normal.
Cuckold: The protagonist creates a barbarian character in a thinly-veiled Skyrim spoof that gets brought into the real world and begins to live his life better than the videogame-obsessed protagonist. This includes being a better companion to his girlfriend, Jessica. Highlights include flat out telling her to her face that he considers women to be property (to which she responds "I Can Change Him"), sweet talking her into fetching beers for a party (while she's naked from the waist down), and changing her from a staunch feminist into someone who likes being won over by a more dominant man. There's even the standard cuckold trope of the replaced boyfriend being effectively feminized to cement his utter defeat.
Deliberate Values Dissonance: Jimbroth has an understandably medieval view on moral issues. When he appears again, he's still not great on the sexuality, as he's grossed out by Doug and Yo reading and getting into the Demo Reel slash they asked for in the "Uncanny Valley" DVD promo.
I Ate What? / Secret Ingredient: Carl and Jessica enjoy the goose that Jimbroth has prepared for them... until he reveals that the goose was cleaned in their toilet, giving Jessica food poisoning as a result.
Ironic Hell: Carl wishes he could be a character in Skyguard's world. It's granted... as the caricature of his girl... without any of Jimbroth's skills... and as Taylin's character.
Karma Houdini: Carl points out the list of offenses that should have gotten Jimbroth arrested, though clearly that never happens, either through plot convenience or convincing people through his charisma to be on his side.
Kleptomaniac Hero: Jimbroth remembers a time when he put a bucket over someone's head and stole everything in sight. This actually is a mechanic that can be done in Skyrim which was overlooked by the developers, but not a glitch. Though since, Bethesda released a patch in which if you attempt it, the NPC will take it off.
List of Transgressions: Carl rattles off all the crimes Jimbroth committed by stabbing a schoolbus' tires, threatening the driver with a sword, bringing a kid home, and giving her alcohol.
Literal Split Personality: Jimbroth is this for Carl. As a result of channelling all of his positive and redeeming traits into the character, Carl has ironically become the "evil" personality in their dichotomy.
Meaningful Name: Mephesto Games made a product that threw all of Carl's negative qualities into sharp relief, and sent him through a test of moral fiber and character which he ultimately fails. In most versions of Faust, Mephistopheles made a deal with the eponymous protagonist that does much the same.
Meaningful Rename: Jimbroth changes his name to "Jimbo" after LeBron tells him to disregard Carl as his master and be his own person, citing Jimbroth as his "slave name."
Mundane Made Awesome: Jimbroth manages to make "Get me a Big Mac from McDonalds" sound like an epic adventure.
He also considers Lebron calling him Jimbo to be a title of great honor.
New Media Are Evil: Subverted. The guys who made Skyguard seem pretty amoral and sleazy, and are named Mephesto... and then we meet Carl, and it is made very, very clear that he was already a self-centered and vain individual before his video game addiction really hit him hard.
Not Distracted by the Sexy: Carl was so into playing Skyguard that he failed to realize when his girlfriend came into the living room wearing only a thong.
Only Sane Man: Carl is the only person who thinks it's weird that a video game character has come to life.
However, his concern over the situation is at first limited to the fact that with Jimbroth in the real world, he can't play his game properly.
Pac-Man Fever: A pointed aversion, many of the terms are Captain Ersatz versions of Skyrim names, such as The Aura Scrolls, Skyguard, and Jimbroth making reference to Sovnheim as the afterlife. However, the jokes about frostbite spiders, dwarven traps, and soul gems show the creators clearly know about Skyrim. Played straight with other characters aside from Jimbroth and Carl, justified since presumably none of them have played the in-universe game the concepts are taken from.
In the film itself, Jimbroth says, "By the stars of Asteroth". And when Carl forces everyone to leave, Jessica almost leaves, until Carl catches her, and she responds with "Good luck, guv'na!"
There are a lot of shout outs to game mechanics present in Skyrim. For example if you put a bucket on someone's head in Skyrim you are out of their line of sight and therefore you can rob them blind. (Though fixed due to a patch) Jimbroth mentions that he did this once.
Straw Feminist: Jessica calls one of the male friends a chauvinist for expecting her to go get him a drink, but gigglingly tries to comply with Jimbroth's request of the same.
Sure, Let's Go with That: Whenever Jimbroth is stuck on a question during his Motivational Speech on business that involve actual technical jargon rather than his own Medieval Jargon he turns to LeBron who nods in a way that says this trope.
Warrior Poet: Jimboth is quite sensitive for a proficient killer.
What Happened to the Mouse?: We never find out what happened to the little girl who Jimbroth "rescued" from a school bus and got drunk on hard cider. Lampshaded by Carl when he belatedly remembers her.
X Meets Y: In their Anime Midwest interview, Rachel and Malcolm said Doug's short was "Skyrim meets Office Space" and not connected to the site at all.