Archive for May, 2004

My Memorial Day viewing

Monday, May 31st, 2004

Tom Selleck Stars in ‘Ike’ D-Day Drama

Tom Selleck may not look exactly like Eisenhower, but what is amazing is how he is almost unrecognizeable in the photo shown here.

The movie sounds good, so I’m adding it to my roster of events tomorrow.

I also have to get up early tomorrow and put up the flag again. It has been raining all weekend and you shouldn’t fly the flag in inclement weather…although mine is an all-weather flag and that is compliant. I suppose it’s rather arbitrary of me to pretend to follow the rules when I tend to leave the flag up at night without illumination. And I have all kinds of dishes and things that have the flag (or at least parts of it) and even that is technically against the rules…although I think they are a bit overly strict about that. According to these rules, all those covers where Superman stands in front of a flag are improper flag etiquette, because the flag should not be printed on a disposable item. And if that’s wrong, then technically no flag should ever be in a newspaper, either.

The best war sim ever

Monday, May 31st, 2004

Pointless Waste of Time has posted The Ultimate War Sim. (Thanks to for the tip.)

The funny thing is…I realize this is pointed satire, but the other part of me would really like to play this game, if only some manufacturer would make it.

Oh: Language notice. It’s funny, but it does have some cursing. Not a lot, just some.

Mark your calendars!

Sunday, May 30th, 2004

Comics Continuum reports that:

…the “Starcrossed” movie will be repeated on Saturday, July 31 at 7:30 p.m.

I don’t know what time zone Continuum is referring to, so beware.

In other news on that same page, Dini is leaving Warner Brothers Animation to “pursue other opportunities”.

Primal Scream time

Sunday, May 30th, 2004

I will refrain from writing a hundred A’s, I’s and G’s across the width of the screen and simply state that I am furious with Cartoon Network and myself.

Two years ago, after anxiously awaiting the three-part “Savage Time” which was to wrap up Justice League’s first season, I found out that instead of showing it as an episode they had aired it as a movie on Memorial Day weekend. So, unless you’re checking their website or watching Cartoon Network to see the ads, you have no idea that you’re going to miss it. Woe to the person who just watches the show at its normal time slot…or worse yet, wasn’t watching because the show had been in reruns for ages by then. And to add insult to injury, they didn’t even put “Savage Time” immediately into the rotation so you could see it in repeats, nor did they re-broadcast their movie. (How weird is that? Seems like every cable channel repeats their original programming endlessly…at least twice a night…but that never seems to happen when you need it to.)

So what happens? Two years later, they’ve done THE EXACT SAME THING and I missed their #@$%!%# MOVIE AGAIN! By the time I spotted a reminder from someone on Dixonverse, there were only 20 minutes left. And this after I swore to myself upon first hearing of Starcrossed that I wouldn’t miss it when the time came, and I’d make sure you all knew about it.

I’m so mad. The only good thing to come of this was the sneak peek (30 seconds or less) at Justice League Unlimited which followed it. Since I wasn’t taping it I can’t give you the “pausefest” list of the characters filling the JLU’s headquarters, but I’m sure some website will have a screenshot shortly. I spotted Captain Atom, Red Tornado, Green Arrow and Supergirl…and Green Arrow got to steal the spotlight with an awesome shot of him firing a trick arrow.

Things Heat Up With Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 9/11”: Miramax founders acquire Rights To Distribute Film

Saturday, May 29th, 2004

It looks like the void that was a distribution deal for Michael Moore’s has finally been filled: the founders of Miramax, Harvey and Bob Weinstein, have personally invested their own money to see the film distributed.

The film rights, estimated at about $6 million, will cover theatrical and home video distribution. The distribution is being fast-tracked to see if a late summer release is still feasible.

“Fahrenheit 9/11” won the Palme d’Or, the highest award of France’s Cannes film festival, this month with its portrayal of families affected by the war and U.S. government policies in the aftermath of the Sept. 11/2001 attacks that felled the World Trade Center. Disney said that it could still profit if the film did well but that it would donate any profit to charity.

Michael Hutchison could not be reached for comment as he was seen in a sackcloth and covered in ashes and praying in his garden following the news. Ian Patterson was seen in the streets loosely juggling a pint of Guinness and screaming “Akbar Allah!!” (kidding).

WizWorld Philly

Saturday, May 29th, 2004

The Scoop has a Wizard World Philadelphia Wrap-Up with a slew of photos for everyone who missed it.

Trailer Trash

Saturday, May 29th, 2004

I post a lot of links to trailers these days (more than I talk about comics sometimes, for which I apologize). As you might guess, I have always liked movie trailers and dig the art form. I’ve even wished that I could work in the trailer industry…especially when I see movie trailers that are all wrong.

Robert Zemeckis has been on this kick where he spoils his movies in trailers that he approves! The suspenseful What Lies Beneath spends an hour laying out a mystery and planting a red herring, but the trailer for it gives away the identity of the killer. Then Castaway‘s trailer gives away the ending by showing Tom Hanks back in civilization! Roger Ebert mistakenly blamed the trailer makers, as he assumed that no director in his right mind would ruin his own movie by giving away the ending in a preview, but Zemeckis is under the belief that moviegoers want to know everything about a movie including the ending when they are deciding to see it.

Comedies are tough to preview because invariably you are giving away jokes…usually the best ones. Throw Momma From the Train lured in tons of people with that hilarious scene where Danny DeVito slams Billy Crystal in the face with a frying pan in order to cover a lie. Throw Momma was a very funny movie, but few of the gags are as good as that one. Still, if you skimp on the laffs in the trailer you run the risk that people might not think it’s funny.

Maybe the best trailers are the teasers that are invented for the trailer and don’t use anything from the movie. Spaceballs had a teaser where the word SPACE grows from infinity to finally fill the screen…then a tiny Mel Brooks walks in at the bottom and shouts, “Where are the BALLS?” Pixar has had original teasers for their last few movies, and they make you want to see the film while giving away hardly anything of the film.

Anyway, check out this Opinion Journal piece on The Art of Trailers

Making trailers involves a lot of gruntwork, going through the movie to grab the best visuals and audio (not always, or even often, synchronous) and figuring out how to edit them in an order that has an emotional effect or a humorous punch. While not as entertaining as “gives away the ending” or “spoils the jokes”, perhaps my most common complaint is that they didn’t make the right choices and I wish I could redo it. Wonder how one gets into this biz.

Memorial Day

Friday, May 28th, 2004

John Cole’s cartoon speaks for us all. Hopefully you will not spend your Memorial Day like this.

(Links will not work after Memorial Day, as JWR links change daily.)

Spoiled trailer?

Friday, May 28th, 2004

It sure seems as though the new trailer for Anchorman gives away the entire plot from beginning to end, including the finale. (He gets off the island but finds Helen Hunt married someone else.)

New movie trailers for the weekend

Friday, May 28th, 2004

The new trailers out today include Supersize Me and Anchorman.

GASP! Bubba Ho-Tep is out on DVD!?!?

Friday, May 28th, 2004

Pardon me while I geek out!

When did we start finding all these planets?

Thursday, May 27th, 2004

According to this article on a new planet found by the Spitzer Space telescope, scientists have found 100 planets in other solar systems.

We have? When did this happen? Why wasn’t this major news when this all started?

I didn’t even know we HAD a Spitzer Space Telescope!


Thursday, May 27th, 2004

Scott McCloud and Scott Kurtz have been talking about a new micropayment system called BitPass, and I thought y’all might be in this Wired article on the subject.

Disney To Do Super-Heroes

Thursday, May 27th, 2004

Disney is developing a comedy called Sky High which centers on a high school for superpowered teens in a world where super-heroes are an everyday occurrence. The movie follows Jeremy, the son of heroes Commander Stronghold and Jetstream, and his attempts to become a regular teenager and a possible future hero.

TV Guides Top 25 Cult shows of all time.

Thursday, May 27th, 2004

25. Freaks and Geeks.

24. Absolutely Fabulous.

23. Forever Knight.

22. H. R. Pufnstuf.

21. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman.

20. Twin Peaks.

19. Dark Shadows.

18. Doctor Who.

17. The Avengers.

16. My So Called Life.

15. Quantum Leap.

14. Beauty and the Beast.

13. Babylon 5.

12. Family Guy.

11. Mystery Science Theatre 3000

10. Pee Wee’s Playhouse.

09. Xena: Warrior Princess.

08. The Twilight Zone.

07. The Prisoner.

06. The Simpsons.

05. Monty Python’s Flying Circus.

04. Farscape.

03. Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

02. X-Files.

01. Star Trek.

(Courtesy the current TV Guide.)

Comics Publishers Move Into Prose World

Wednesday, May 26th, 2004

Both Dark Horse Comics and Marvel Comics have announced they are creating prose publishing imprints.

Dark Horse Comics will be creating 2 imprints. M Press will handle more standard prose. It’s debut book will be Ursula Bacon’s Shanghai Diary, a non-fiction book about an 11 year old Jewish girl’s experiences in 1930s Shanghai as her family fled from the approaching Holocaust. It is scheduled for a September release. DH Press will handle the more pop-culture related titles. It’s debut book will be Don Bluth’s The Art of Storyboard, a textbook of sorts by animation legend Don Bluth describing in detail the technical and artistic process involved in crafting storyboards for animated films. It is scheduled for an October release.

Marvel Comics is creating Marvel Press. It will publish books based upon characters in the Marvel Universe. It has 3 novels scheduled for 2004 and a minimum of 12 for 2005. Mary Jane II is scheduled for June, a fantasy Wolverine title in October and a middle grade Spider-Man title in November.

Forsooth, herewith be mine visage.

Wednesday, May 26th, 2004

I sat for hours to have this portrait made. Man my butt is tired. Phew.

Identity Crisis Victum Revealed Via Key Mourner At Funeral

Wednesday, May 26th, 2004

mourner blur.JPG


DO NOT click on the above image unless you want to know who the mourner is who I have blanked out for obvious reasons. Thanks to for the above image.

Phil jumps on newly-built bandwagon

Wednesday, May 26th, 2004


Suitably out of focus. It adds to the mystique.

Monitor Duty Contributor Shamelessly Posts His Own Picture

Wednesday, May 26th, 2004

bbb_small copy.JPG

Now you know what I really look like. I suggest that other MD contributors post pics so that we have a better sense of who each of us is.

Hey, Gillins. I shave my head every week or so (I own clippers)… so I guess that I’m bald by choice… that is, other than the biologically massively receeding hairline. 😉