Archive for the ‘Mainstream Press Notes’ Category

Comedian John Pinette dies at 50

Monday, April 7th, 2014
Stuart Ramson/AP

Stuart Ramson/AP

Chubby comedian John Pinette, who jokes about buffets and Italian food, acted in “The Punisher,” Dr. Katz, the last episode of Seinfeld, and on stage in Hairspray, has been found dead in his hotel room at age 50.

I’m going to miss him a lot.  I own his album, a DVD, I caught his latest show on Netflix, and I always liked him.  R.I.P.

Michael Clarke Duncan is dead at 54

Monday, September 3rd, 2012

Michael Clarke Duncan was a “hulking” individual, and used his size and strength to his advantage for many roles, especially genre roles, including Daredevil, where he played the Kingpin of Crime.

He passed away of a heart attack.

Clarke died Monday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, where he was being treated for a heart attack, said his fiancée, Reverend Omarosa Manigault, in a statement released by publicist Joy Fehily.

The muscular, 6-foot-4 Duncan, a former bodyguard who turned to acting in his 30s, “suffered a myocardial infarction on July 13 and never fully recovered,” the statement said. “Manigault is grateful for all of your prayers and asks for privacy at this time. Celebrations of his life, both private and public, will be announced at a later date.”

Apparently trading meat for vegetables did not save him. Eating healthy and living a more healthy life is possibly a way to extend your life, but more important is that eating vegetables actually made his life more enjoyable and more comfortable.

So taking actions to extend the quality and quantity of life are both good, but enjoying and using the life as you have it, in a productive fashion or fun, is very important. I won’t mind-read but given how prolific Mr Duncan was I doubt he would dispute the quality of his life.

He played the Kingpin in the film adaptation of the Marvel Comic DAREDEVIL. He played that role again in the MTV-made SPIDER-MAN adult cartoon soon after.

Among the genre films Mr Duncan has made

“The Green Mile” and such other box office hits as “Armageddon,” “Planet of the Apes” and “Kung Fu Panda,”

and SIN CITY, an adaptation of Frank Miller’s noir series. his current project was a supporting role in the television series THE FINDER.

Megatron versus the Windsor police?

Sunday, June 26th, 2011

Despite this being an event in Canada it is indicative about our own country’s legal policies regarding toys realistically resembling firearms.

WINDSOR, Ont. — A 25-year-old Windsor man who allegedly pointed a handgun at his neighbours was arrested on Wednesday after police officers surrounded his west end residence.

The three-hour standoff forced the lockdown of a nearby elementary school, and drew a police response that included tactical officers, body armour, submachine guns, sniper rifles, a police dog and the mobile command centre.

“We treat everything as real,” said Insp. Kirk Mason at the scene after the man had been taken into custody.

“There will be a search of the premises and hopefully we’ll come up with whatever it is that he was waving out the window at his neighbours.”

But the man’s friends accused police of overreacting, and said his supposed handgun was a toy.

“It’s a Transformer,” said William Findley, 24. “It turns into a Luger. It’s an 80s-style Transformer… He’s had a really bad day. People are treating him like crap.”

Findley said his friend had a pellet gun in the house at one point, but it was elsewhere at the time of the incident, and the only thing left resembling a weapon was his “Megatron” toy gun… Mason said the original call to police was that the man had become irate over his apparent eviction, and that he’d begun “screaming and yelling” and pointing what looked like a handgun out the window of his upstairs unit… Emily, who lives next door and didn’t want her last name published, said she also saw the man point a silver-coloured pistol… Mason said charges are pending. “We’re going to be looking at some weapon offences at the very least, but we’ll have to give it some time to get to the bottom of it.”

Mason said the response level was reasonable, and in accordance with procedure. “Everything went very smoothly, as usual,” he said.

Regarding the complaints of some in the neighbourhood, Mason said: “Well, I’ll let the neighbours be the judge. If somebody’s wagging a gun in your face… I would hope that would get police attention.”

Megatron, the toy robot in question, transforms into a Walther P38, actually.

That is beside the point, of course, that the toy in question transforms from a robot to an artifact that resembles a genuine firearm.  It is my understanding that under current American law it is illegal to manufacture and sell toys that realistically resemble real guns.  Necessarily these items could be used to alarm police.  Some would say that this is for safety reasons but the real purpose is to compensate for an overly litigious age that desperately needs tort reform.

It does mean that no replicas of particular toys from my childhood will be reproduced.
I never did understand why a Decepticon Commander converted into a weapon for another individual to hold.

Google celebrates Will Eisner’s 94th birthday

Monday, March 7th, 2011

In times past I have justly ripped on Google for their inappropriate choice for respect in their tributes (as far tributes go, anyway) but as far I as know it is most appropriate to take the 94th day of annual commemoration of the birth of Spirit-ualist and graphic novelist extraordinaire and pay tribute to the man with this:

If you don’t understand the visual relevance than Google will only grant you a cursory understanding insomuch that others understand the significance of Will Eisner’s sizable contribution to the genre of comic strip heroes and medium of comic books, yet not grant an understanding of said significance unto you.

Also: the Frank Miller movie is not about Will Eisner’s character; he just used the name; I don’t know why.




Sunday, January 9th, 2011

Disney acquires Marvel Comics for $4B?

Monday, August 31st, 2009

Reportedly, Disney has purchased Marvel Comics for 4 billion dollars.

In related news, “Spider-Man 4” is now filming, with Spidey battling the evil Dr. Flubber.

R.I.P. John Hughes (Updated)

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

Here’s the first celebrity death in a long time that has truly hit me hard: John Hughes, writer, director, producer, is dead at 59 of a heart attack.

The films he was involved in reads like a greatest hits of the 1980s list: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Home Alone, Trains, Planes and Automobiles, She’s Having a Baby, Pretty In Pink, Some Kind of Wonderful, Weird Science, National Lampoon’s Vacation, The Breakfast Club…and Career Opportunities, a lesser hit with a fantastic poster.

Rest In Peace, Mr. Hughes.

UPDATED: I’m not alone in my sentiments that this hurts far worse than the recent death of the self-mutilated child molester that we had to be told was influential.
Big Hollywood: “The Frank Capra of Generation X has Died“, a well-written tribute that puts my meager words to shame.
Carl Kozlowski: “Don’t You Forget About Him

John Hughes’ movies were the true voice of my generation. I think the last person whose death hurt this badly was Jim Henson, also taken way too early.

And that’s the way it was…

Friday, July 17th, 2009

Walter Cronkite, Reporter, Anchorman, Legend, has passed away
Also known as the most trusted man in America, he founded and set the standard for reporting the news which very few have matched.

Rest in peace Mr. Cronkite

Gorilla City is the size of Topeka?

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

If Gorilla City from Flash comic books really does exist in our universe, and it’s the size of Topeka, KS, then we had better watch out for Gorilla Grodd!

Bob and Brian cover this story.

Val Kilmer to run for NM Governor

Friday, February 6th, 2009

More here…

What disturbs me is that, if successful, he will be the third actor from Batman and Robin [NOT Batman Forever – Ye Ed] (a film, even the most unrefined of comic geeks believe to be the WORST Batman film ever) to land a governorship.

Makes you think.

Reason #6,542 I’ll never live in California.

Friday, February 6th, 2009

No, wait, I think I’ll bump this up to reason #1:
Thousands of Migrating Tarantulas

Migrating in such numbers that they once devoured a herd of cattle!!!!!  I mean, if I heard of ONE cow being devoured by a horde of tarantulas, and I lived within 1000 miles of it, that would freak me out so much that I’d move to Iceland.  An entire HERD of cattle?

What chance would a human being have?  

Yeesh.  I would not only fight for legalized DDT, I’d make carrying it mandatory.

Where is the press in this?  Why haven’t we heard of it?  Probably because no pretty California newsbabe wants to head out in the desert to film carnivorous spiders by the tens of thousands!  And I don’t blame her a damn bit.

Makes you want to move to Liberia, where the worst that can happen is that caterpillars poop in your drinking water.

Majel B. Roddenberry, wife of ‘Star Trek’ creator, dies – Los Angeles Times

Saturday, December 20th, 2008

(Ahem. First, a brief aside: SEE, Turner Classic Movies? See? This is why you don’t do your “tribute to the stars who passed away in 2008” montage two weeks before the end of the year!)

Majel Barrett has passed away, going to join DeForrest Kelly, James Doohan and her husband Gene Roddenberry in the great beyond. R.I.P.

love triangle would make Star Wars more interesting

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

I saw Star Wars The Clone War opening week and overall I enjoyed the movie, but I’ll make my thoughts known in a post later in the next seven days. It needs being said that what I did not like enjoy about the movie is far easier to articulate and is much more interesting.

What the AP has written about Anakin’s new sidekick being a more interesting romantic component than the ever-dry and stand-offish love interest he already had bears reading. Of course, this sort of statutory pursuit is definite Dark Side.

My favorite part?

From there, she exhibits enough battle pluck and witty repartee to win over her brooding mentor – he warms quickly to the idea of having a young assistant (who Mark Rahner of the Seattle Times describes as “a tiny girl with huge eyes and a tube-top who looks like a slutty Disney character.” Fair enough).

Ultimately one wonders what Anakin will say when he, as Darth Vader, hacks this child to tiny Lolita pieces. Would something that is inappropriate to the general themes of the franchise (as tattered as they all may have been left by the morally-vacuous prequels and the mongrel Expanded Universe) be ultimately beneficial to the combined narrative? That is not relevant as even Darth Vader will not engage in romantic action with a child character. Is the Padawan intended to be a child character?

Those Three Kings of America Are….

Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

Military historian Victor Davis Hanson was watching Three Kings (starring George Clooney) recently.

Three Kings, by my reckoning was made in the nineties, but more relevantly the movie was made before the 9/11 terrorist attacks and reflects a different ethos that popular culture had towards Iraq and our country’s prior invasion and occupation. Nowadays the idea is that we did too much by deposing Saddam Hussein from power. President George Walker Bush, Bush 43, is wrong.  Three Kings presents everything as if President George Herbert Walker Bush, Bush 41, was/is wrong.

The idea is clearly presented that we did too little by leaving Saddam Hussein in power.The only common denominator between not doing enough in Three Kings and doing too much in Redacted, Syriana, Rendition, etc. …seems to have been that whatever the U.S. did was always wrong — whether too little or too much.

I think it is a fair question whether Dr. Hanson is onto something or not.

The better question I want to ask is whether Three Kings was persuasive.

warping space for travel may be possible

Wednesday, August 20th, 2008

Warp drive in Star Trek essentially works by harnessing massive amounts of energy through matter/anti-matter reactions regulated by Dilithium crystals and using that energy to create a “warp bubble” around the starship allowing the vessel’s mass to remain constant or even decrease instead of decrease allowing the ship to travel as superluminal speeds without the accompanying increase of mass which is what makes faster-than-light travel prohibitive in the real world. Obviously in the fiction that is not all there is to it, but I figured awhile ago that said “Warp Drive” did not involve literally warping space. The result, of course, is the same however you define the technobabble, treknobabble, or describe it at all: the Starship Enterprise manages to travel from one Adventure Planet to another.

In some stories space battles are even viable events between the relatively static settings.

In real life a deliberate purposeful control of an object’s physical mass is a less viable option. As far as I know, and I am not a scientist, it is impossible.

Scientists actually declare that “Star Trek warp drive” is a possibility, according to the UK Telegaph. By which those scientists mean that the effects are the same. They obviously do not mean that their warp bubble is an element or tool for mass-shifting effects and there is no method with the prerequisite of synthesizing or discovering anti-matter elements in substantially massive quantities. This is fortunate. Fortunately the idea of warp drive involves literally warping space, and relying upon past scientific discoveries and ideas. In other words the science fiction idea reminds me of what used to be science fictional concepts which were just variations, deviations, and expansions of existing technologies. Unfortunately the use of string theory concepts in technology is not as far along as I would like it, but who can complain. The theories and ideas are dark energy, responsible for the expansion of the universe, and the 10th dimension involved in string theory.

Now Dr Gerald Cleaver, associate professor of physics at Baylor, and Richard Obousy have come up with a new twist on an existing idea to produce a warp drive that they believe can travel faster than the speed of light, without breaking the laws of physics.

In their scheme, in the Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, a starship could “warp” space so that it shrinks ahead of the vessel and expands behind it.

By pushing the departure point many light years backwards while simultaneously bringing distant stars and other destinations closer, the warp drive effectively transports the starship from place to place at faster-than-light speeds.

The theories of the speed of light are only effective speed limits at “unwarped ‘flat’ space.” Space itself has no speed limit and if a “spaceship can sit “at rest in its small [warp] bubble of space” it can skim and coast along the flow of space as the universe expands.

In the scheme outlined by Dr Cleaver dark energy would be used to create the bubble: if dark energy can be made negative in front of the ship, then that patch of space would contract in response.

I’m oversimplifying but the scheme cannot be put in practice yet anyway. I might also be muddling whether the ship is in the bubble or on the bubble. The bubble is a metaphor anyway. As it is the key to warping space in this manner is putting stuff that was in front of the ship behind the ship; it is changing the size of spatial dimension 10 that alters the energy that would “propel the ship faster than the speed of light.” Does anyone have an engine or mechanism to alter the 10th spatial dimension described in string theory?

Isaac Hayes dies

Monday, August 11th, 2008

Most know Isaac Hayes as a singer, or as the creator of the Shaft theme. Probably slightly more will know him as Chef until Scientology finally invaded the humor centers of his mind.

I recall him from Truck Turner and as a fan of and character in Stargate SG-1.

Issac Hayes died yesterday, quite young, and I shall miss him.

Bernie Mac passed away

Sunday, August 10th, 2008

Bernie Mac, the least annoying actor in Transformers and Charlie’s Angels, and more importantly, and on a serious note, the actor and stand-up comedian who starred in Ocean’s 11, Ocean’s 13, and in his own television sitcom, passed away August 9th from complications of pneumonia.

My father passed away from similar illness.

My proper obituary will be forthcoming in a few weeks.

The Super Force- Real Life Superheroes!

Tuesday, July 1st, 2008

Seven people from around the world with real mutant superpower.

I think Serling rejected this story

Sunday, April 6th, 2008

A guy gets a heart transplant from a man who shot himself. The recipient then marries the donor’s widow… and then also commits suicide by shooting himself.

Pity the next recipient of that heart!

Who’s the leader of the club that’s made for you and me?

Thursday, April 3rd, 2008

For those of you who fuss about politicians choosing their background so that they’re always in front of a backdrop with the words “Change” or “Opportunity For Growth” or “We Must Have Change” or “Got Any Change?”:


Oh, and Chavez is calling the photo an act of terrorism.