Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Remember DM of the Rings?

Friday, August 1st, 2014

DM Rings headerI remember DM of the Rings.  Now scroll to the bottom there, or I’ll just link to the first one.

Now Lord of the Rings is such a basis for so many tropes, elements, and now-cliches in more or less half of the genre that we cover here, or perhaps ALL OF THE GENRES we cover here, depending on what you or your average literature major judge, that even though I had not read the books before I saw the movie, I knew how the movie(s) was/were going to go.  Almost none of these movies spoil me because I am genre-savvy.  Therefore I am genre-savvy enough to anticipate events with the foundation-story.

Naturally role-playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons have Tolkien to thank for their lore, their content.

DM of the Rings, DM standing for Dungeon Master, operated under the premise that the foundation for much of our fan-favorite fantasy fiction did not exist, albeit with something else to inspire the stuff, and the specifics first appeared as a roleplaying game.

I read much of this….. I don’t remember where I was… I think a local all-night coffeehouse in East Lansing, way way back in the day.  I remember rainy nights. I loved those.  Bad internet. Barely enough plugs and outlets for a college town with one wifi-enabled coffee shop.


James Rebhorn, SecDef in ID4, dies of skin cancer at 65

Sunday, March 23rd, 2014
James Rebhorn along with his two sidekicks in INDEPENDENCE DAY (20th Century Fox)

James Rebhorn along with his two sidekicks in INDEPENDENCE DAY (20th Century Fox)

A farewell to James Rebhorn, who was in a ton of stuff, but I will always think of him as the SecDef in Independence Day.  Turns out he had been fighting cancer for 22 years. R.I.P.



“Who Is Donna Troy?” still packs a punch

Monday, November 25th, 2013

We got linked from an article over at CBR and I followed the link. Just seeing two scans of  New Teen Titans by Wolfman and Perez on that page managed to get me to tear up.  Dang, but that comic was powerful.

New Teen Titans #38, “Who Is Donna Troy?”, remains one of the best examples of a done-in-one 22-page killer story.  I’ve never met anyone who didn’t like it.  I’m sure there must be such people, but even they would have to concede that it is well-done and an effective use of the sequential art form.  For kids born in the 1970s, this is the “Star Wars” of comic books.

And it’s also kind of the pinnacle.  Half a decade later, the very same comic book team is doing “Who Is Wonder Girl?” and it takes five issues to tell and it’s no comparison.

RandomGuy Teaching #1 – Ian McKellan

Friday, August 16th, 2013

Michael Agrusso, aka RandomGuy, begins his series teaching his viewers, us, how he performs various specific voices one by one, starting with Ian McKellan.

For those not in the know, ItsJustSomeRandomGuy is the one that creates all of those “I’m a Marvel and I’m a DC” vidoes on YouTube, parodying the “I’m a Mac” “I’m a PC” promotions from way back when. I still hate Justin Long.

It is always a little weird seeing his actual face with the different voices coming out.

Superman actually hits somebody!!!

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Marvel Comics launches robot Avengers title

Friday, March 29th, 2013

I find this concept to be horrifically boring and like one of those old concepts they refuse to acknowledge they did multiple times already.

“Springing out of the increasingly razor-thin crawlspace between the organic and synthetic worlds comes ‘Avengers A.I.’,” said Axel Alonso, Editor In Chief, Marvel Entertainment.  “When one of the Marvel Universe’s preeminent brainiacs, Hank Pym, embarks on a long road to redemption, he must assemble a team unlike any other, a team composed of heroes that will challenge the very definition of ‘Artificial Intelligence’ and the way you look at super heroes.”

How many times and under how many different writers has Hank Pym hit a low point and then was redeemed?  Don’t bother counting it will just make you wish they stopped writing new comic books if you try.

I also fail to see how we can get a good robot Avengers team when I don’t see Machine Man (a.k.a. X-51 a.k.a Aaron Stack) or Jocasta, both of whom were in Marvel Zombies.  The last time I saw Machine Man before that was in Warren Ellis’s Nextwave: Agents of Hate comic book.

I’m sure if I think about it I can come up with other robot super-heroes in the Marvel Universe.

Now I looked and here is another release with another description for the book.  I just don’t plain understand this concept.

“The Marvel Universe within the blink of an eye is being colonized by A.I.s who may or may not have positive feelings about the way humanity has been treating them for the past 100 years,” said writer Sam Humphries of his new series. Featuring art by Andre Lima Araujo, the comic sports a line-up of robotic characters: the Vision, Ultron’s son and former Runaway Victor Mancha, a new character named Alexis and a Doombot who has until now been held prisoner by the Avengers. Joining them is Ultron’s father, Hank Pym and Monica Chang, the 616 Universe’s version of Humphries’ “Ultimate Comics Ultimates” S.H.I.E.L.D. commander.

“He comes back after having transformed himself, after upgrading himself, and now that he is in the age of artificial intelligence in the Marvel Universe, he has a new role to play,” Humphries said of the newest incarnation of the Vision, currently seen terrorizing his fellow Avengers in the pages of “Age of Ultron. “He’s not just a bridge between humanity and A.I. but he is a leader. All of a sudden, he’s not just the robot in the room — he’s an A.I. in a world of A.I. and humans.”

The team will face off against a new villain named Dimitirious while facing challenges not typically found in the hero/villain dynamic “”Artificial intelligences are a product of human ingenuity, and although they are going to be going down their new path, they will remain a mirror to humanity,” Humphries said “Understanding that and exploring that in ways that are going to be funny and touching and endearing are definitely going to be parts of this book.”

I don’t care now.  In the blink of an eye we have 100 years of robots?

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

break 13 is just NFL Evolution

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

This NFL Evolution advertisement is brilliant as they animate the changes in the pro football uniform.

I don’t use the term “brilliant” lightly.

when will I stop?

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Right after the Iron Man 3 trailer I believe.

break 06

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

#Doritos advertisement involves manipulative children and cross-dressing.

Calvin Klein is unwatchable to me.

There was a car ad I think and I blinked.

The ad with the wolves is great… especially the “incredibly protective mother”

break 05 – end of First Quarter

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Another Fast and Furious movie…. what is this the sixth one? it almost looks like a G.I. Jo movie or a XXX chapter. Fast & Furious 6

Now we have a Toyota ad with Kaley Kuoco. It is a RAV4 ad and it pulls you in.

Robin Sparkles 4… How I Met Your Mother ad….

break 04

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Oz The Great and Powerful movie trailer…. is fine.

This Coke ad is cheerful. Bleh. “Just a Litle Bit”

The Oreo ad set in a library is violent. I love it. “Cream or Cookie”.

I won’t watch the Grammy awards this year… I don’t believe.

break 03

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Pepsi Next commercials causes catastrophic house party as the parents walk in. The so-called twist is predictable as the parents drink the Pepsi and are suddenly tolerant.

Amy Poehler annoys me in the Best Buy ad. #InfiniteAnswers

The second Budweiser Golden Crown ad may entertain me but it shares the same music as the opening to Two Broke Girls and I hate that show.

The ad for The Big Band Theory is football themed and fine.

Hyundai ad between coin toss and kick-off

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Hyundai advertisement about a road trip and chasing and running. It reminds me of Doctor Who for that reason.

I don’t recognize the band or the music in the background.

Now the game starts.

I must ask…

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011

I just watched Tim Burton’s “Alice In Wonderland” because I was clearing out the DVR. (We had gotten a free movie channels weekend, which offered me a great opportunity to fill the DVR with movies I would never pay to see like Alice in Wonderland, Predators, Transformers 2, The Sorceror’s Apprentice, etc.) I found “Alice” to be incredibly overwrought and dull in that “Isn’t it astounding what you can do with a squizillion dollars of computer graphics?” way that many big blockbusters are.

Johnny Depp’s overacting is painful just as it was in “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”, with the added bonus of being pedo-creepy in that he gives the Mad Hatter a crush on a girl he previously met as a child (and Depp is twice her age as well). But I finally realized my big hang-up with Tim Burton movies:

What the hell is it about pasty white skin that Tim Burton thinks is so goddam enchanting?

Look, Beetlejuice was dead, and The Joker IS pasty white, and Edward Scissorhands is pale from never seeing the sun. I get that. But then, Catwoman and The Penguin were pasty white, too. I guess I attributed it to the wintry color scheme of the movie. And of course, the animated films about gruesome monsters and dead people would have pasty white skin.  That makes sense.  Pee-Wee Herman isn’t exactly George Hamilton, either, but that’s a pre-existing character.

But then you throw in films where the white skin clearly isn’t related to the character’s being dead or British, such as Sleepy Hollow, or Depp’s bizarre take on Willy Wonka as a Michael Jacksony freak, and it begins to look pathological.  Then there’s the Mad Hatter, the Red Queen, the White Queen and endless other Alice in Wonderland characters…  You begin to suspect that Hollywood just keeps giving Tim Burton cash to make these garish films because without his career he’d just be hanging around mortuaries while vigorously abusing himself.


Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

Posting missed yesterday. Wedding plans have turned our household upside down. Busy busy!

Why Kurt Busiek rocks more than most

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

At SpringCon, I happened to pick up Superman #668-670 in a cheapo bin. A storyline entitled “The Third Kryptonian” written by Kurt Busiek, it’s probably one of the more fun Superman stories that I’ve read in a while.

I should explain: I had bought some Superman comics prior to 1986, but from John Byrne’s reboot onward I was pretty hard-core. I bought every issue, and a lot of them I absolutely loved. In the early 1990s, following Superman’s death and rebirth, the books started really dragging. I didn’t mind Superman’s long hair…but it is definitely the hallmark of the era when the Superman books started sucking in a major way. The comics had become one big soap opera, and when Lori Lemaris turned up alive I said Sayonara. (It may seem a petty thing, but I’ve always loved the post-Crisis retelling of the Lori Lemaris love story and the stirring ending of the tale being turned into a whalesong as a memorial to Lori. All that gets ruined if she just turns up alive.)

Aside from buying the Wedding issue, I hadn’t gotten a Superman comic book since 1995 until Eddie Berganza took over as editor. The whole storyline where Superman forgets to take off his wedding ring intrigued me, so I bought some issues from 2000-2001, but left again when Lex Luthor became President. (I always hated the idea because it didn’t make any sense. As Dwayne McDuffie elegantly put it in the animated series version, “Do you have any idea how much power I [Lex Luthor] would have to give up to become President?”

On top of all that, you have the whole B13 Technology storyline that makes no sense (why would flying cars only be a Metropolis thing?), and then the “Return to Krypton” and “Birthright” stories that polluted the post-Crisis history of Krypton/Superman beyond my ability to keep straight. “Smallville” takes off on TV, and suddenly Pa Kent looks like John Schneider and Superboy is having sex with Wonder Girl in a barn that looks like the one in the TV show, and then for no reason all of a sudden Kryptonian technology gets all crystalline just like the Christopher Reeve movies. Long story short…

What few Superman comics I’ve bought in the last decade either confused me, failed to entertain me or downright ticked me off.

So… “The Last Kryptonian”, from 2007. Here’s why I like this:

  • Accessible.  Despite being very out of recent developments, Busiek gets me up to speed on everything relevant (I had no clue Superman had a foster child, but it’s an awesome idea).  This arc stands on its own.
  • Busiek the fanboy.  When Superman has to give his kid a watch with a device inside it, he uses a Zoo Crew wristwatch with Pig Iron on it.  Batman even uses “Pig Iron” as the codephrase for the watch!  There’s also a character with the cover identity of Kristin Wells, who Pre-Crisis was Superwoman.
  • Serious without being universe-destroying serious.  This time, the threat is just to Kryptonians, but it is a very serious threat.  Batman gets called into action, and his use of a Kryptonian battle-suit and the Fortress of Solitude is…well… can I just say “awesome”?  At the same time, we don’t see a whole lot of death just to show how bad the bad guys are.
  • Heart-warming moments.  The best part of the whole three-parter is when Batman and Robin meet Christopher Kent for the first time.  Tim Drake hangs out with the boy and teaches him some gymnastics, while Superman and Batman commiserate about how each of them is suddenly a father of a foster son.  Busiek got a smile out of me (and I re-read that part after I was done to savor it).

If only more current comic books were like this story!

ABC interviews CBS actor Charlies Sheen

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

I don’t like watching the show.  I have watched it.  That is not important now.

I am on a drug. It’s called Charlie Sheen. It’s not available because if you try it once, you will die. Your face will melt off and your children will weep over your exploded body. 

What is important is that Charlie Sheen’s dialogue is written by Jack Kirby.

If Boyd Kirkland is dead

Friday, February 4th, 2011

SPIDER-FRIENDS.COM – Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends – Boyd Kirkland Interview 6/04.

We must read this intereview


Sunday, January 9th, 2011