Archive for August, 2006

TVology 101- Star Trek Lives!

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

TVology 101

Visit my new blog that is all about television. It will have commentary, information and special features. Come one and come all.

The first entry celebrates Star Trek’s coming 40th anniversary with some bombastic news and rumors about the movie in 2008 and the new television syndication deal for TOS!

The blog is also mirrored at TVology 101

The USPS To Stamp Out Marvel

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

Earlier this summer the U.S. Postal Service released a series of stamps featuring DC’s stable of characters. In 2007 Marvel’s characters will get the same treatment. The set will follow the design used for the DC set and feature 10 stamps of character shots and 10 stamps of classic covers. The characters to receive stamps are Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, Sub-Mariner, The Thing, Captain America, Silver Surfer, Spider-Woman, Iron Man, Elektra and Wolverine. The covers to be featured are Amazing Spider-Man #1, Incredible Hulk #1, Sub-Mariner #1, Fantastic Four #3, Captain America #100, Silver Surfer #1, Marvel Spotlight #32 (featuring Spider-Woman), Iron Man #1, Daredevil #176 (featuring Elektra) and X-Men #1.

The Tick Vs. Season One on DVD!

Saturday, August 26th, 2006

What a time to have no income! The first season of the Tick Animated Series arrives on Monday, and I won’t be able to buy it after wanting it to come out on DVD for so many years.



New campaign on Monitor Duty

Thursday, August 24th, 2006

UPDATED — Campaign over, links removed.

After a long absence, I finally got a new ad up on the top there. Any and all income is appreciated at the moment, naturally.

I know, there probably aren’t too many of you out there who are in the market for a car, but I hope you’ll at least check out the new Acura campaign once. Clicks are appreciated. And so long as Monitor Duty shows that we can generate clicks, they’ll probably switch us to a video game ad for the next campaign.

Yeah, I could ten banners all over the site and get more money that way, but I think ads are more effective if there is just one attractive one. And I wish I knew how to use Flash. Guess I should be studying up during my, ahem, off time.

UPDATE! All that fuss, and I forgot to paste in the text! I also forgot to mention the video game you get to play. Check it out:

Do you have what it takes to get past ClubRDX’s velvet ropes?

Test your cool quotient and experience the thrill of a night out on the town in a brand new Acura RDX with the Acura ClubRDX online game. The game offers visitors an exciting and fun way to get up to speed with the RDX, the technocharged crossover SUV from Acura.

ClubRDX uses interactive techniques that allow players to select their own wardrobe, road tunes, test their bouncer schmoozing skills, and showcase their dance moves, while providing a preview of RDX’s amazing technological features including the voice recognition navigation system and the10-speaker surround sound stereo system. Players can check their game progress with the cool performance meter.

The RDX is all about style, comfort, and technology and is the perfect vehicle to compliment a busy lifestyle. RDX comes equipped with a variable flow turbocharger, Super Handlin All-Wheel Drive™, a 2.3 liter, 16-valve, DOHC i-VTEC® 4-cylinder engine, six airbags, sports seats, leather trim, automatic climate control, XM Satellite Radio and much more!

If you can wait 3 million years, it’s even cheaper

Thursday, August 24th, 2006

Now that I own all eight episodes of Red Dwarf on DVD, they finally unleash The Complete Red Dwarf at a price that averages out to a cheap $22 each!

Yeah, I know, it’s another merchant link. Whine all you want, but I could use the cash…and this IS good news for any Red Dwarf fan who somehow held out til now before buying the DVDs.

a Star Wars story with a moral to it!

Thursday, August 24th, 2006

Every so often, on a presumably regular basis that I don’t pay attention to, I get e-mail from “Star Wars Homing Beacon” which is the Official free fan service connection, as opposed to HyperSpace, which is the Official fan club that people pay for.

Take from that what you will.

Regardless in my most recent issue (#168 Behind the Bikini) there was a story of how they discovered the creator of Princess Leia’s metal bikini from Return of the Jedi. The creator is a sculptor named Richard Miller. Since it’s not a real bikini it has to be sculpted. Since it is scuplted, a mold of the wearer has to be made. That mold is made by a man. The part of the story that cracks me up is as follows and is told by Lorne Peterson, veteran ILM modelmaker.

“An interesting aside is that one of the moldmakers, when he realized he was going to get to do the body-casting of Carrie Fisher… he talked about it every day,” recalls Peterson. “And somewhere in Production, at the last minute, they changed and had another moldmaker do it, much to his chagrin. If he had just kept his mouth shut and not been so enthusiastic, they would have let him go through with it!”

Essentially he knew where he was empowered to put his hands and if only he was more tasteful about it…

I am sure that there is a more moralistic meaning to draw from it, but I can’t really see it , considering the moldmaker’s primary interests.

Plastic Man Pilot

Thursday, August 24th, 2006

A video has shown up on YouTube of the pilot for a Plastic Man animated series. The episode was produced by Andy Suriano and Tom Kenny. Kenny, who is well known as the voice of Spongebob Squarepants, is also the voice of Plastic Man. Dave Coulier (“Joey” of Full House) is also a featured as the voice of Eel O’Brian’s parole officer.

The episode shows a lot of promise. Visually, it took a lot of cues from the recent Plastic Man comic book by Kyle Baker. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like the series was picked up by Cartoon Network.

[…aaaaaaand it’s already been removed by YouTube. Sorry folks. – Ye Ed]

Here’s what happens when you neglect a comic character

Thursday, August 24th, 2006

Justice League of America #1 debuted today. Brad Meltzer’s story is off to a slow start, typical of the “write for the trade” style. Sure, once it’s all assembled, there will be action in the story, we just don’t get to see it in this installment. That said, it makes for an intense read with some touching moments and solid drama, and I’m especially pleased to see the attention paid to some second-string characters I’ve loved for years, namely The Metal Men and Red Tornado.

First off, the Metal Men. I’m somewhat glad that the Infinite Crisis simply wiped out the 1993 mini-series and re-established that they are robots, not human souls trapped in robot form.

And the “somewhat” is only on account a’ I had a pitch to bring the Metal Men back and it too is now scrap alongside the “Merry Adventures of Elongated Man and His Wife”, my Captain Carrot mini, my Suicide Squad focused on Captain Boomerang, my story about Robin camping with his dad, my Blue Beetle mini that would make Ted a serious character again, my plans for a Guy Gardner Warrior mini and everything else I ever planned to pitch to DC. You know how Ronald Reagan said he didn’t leave the Democratic Party, it left him? I’m still a lifelong DC fan, but over the last several years, the DCU has pretty much moved beyond anything I’d want to write. Forget “want”…almost none of the characters I’d want to write are available or in the same shape they were in before. The only thing left in my pitch pile for ideas I could throw at Dan Didio if the situation came up are Elseworlds stories, and DC isn’t really doing those anymore. At this point, I’m pretty much a mere spectator…and at $3 a pop for everything on the stands, maybe not even that for much longer. (I’m unemployed, remember?)

So…ahem…sorry for the diversion. Back to the Metal Men. I detailed back in my first contributions to Fanzing about how the Metal Men had been through numerous revamps mainly due to the differences in writers and the progression of the initial concept. The early issues of Metal Men had the characters as solid robots with very limited shape-changing abilities. I even remember an early issue where they made a point about how one was exposed to enough flame to start melting; this is radically different from the robots today who change shape at will. (What’s the big deal about Mercury being liquid if they all can liquefy, I wonder?) Although years before such ideas as nanorobotics and liquid metal T-1000s, it came to be accepted that the robots weren’t the ordinary kind with nuts, bolts and wires, but were solid metal clear through. It’s pretty batty to insist that their outer casings’ properties would apply to their interiors if they aren’t made of the same metals.

John Byrne finally redefined them very well in Action Comics, where it was revealed that the robots were made of a special Magnus polymer which duplicated the properties of the metal assigned by the Responsometer… and the Responsometers were shown to be microscopic. Well done, John! Then this was ignored in the 1993 mini, when the responsometer became the size of a casaba melon.

And now, in 52 (or should I say “then” in 52?) the Metal Men are back to being solid metal robots with wires and hoses and nuts and bolts, and they can be disabled just by taking off their heads. This is actually the first time in Metal Men history that separating their heads deactivates them.

Why are the Metal Men brought back only to be feebs? They’re not feebs! They could be one of the coolest teams around if they were written right. Argh!

This is one of the problems with being a minor neglected character. Here’s another:

How old is Traya? You know, Traya, who was adopted by Red Tornado and his “wife” Kathy Sutton when RT found her in a war zone way back in issue 152 of Justice League of America from 1978? Believe it or not, she actually looked to be about 12 years old in her first appearance! They moved the age back a bit when she was brought back to the USA and adopted, but let’s be charitable and say she was as young as 7.

Now, granted, there’s that 10-year timeline. Even there, when it was written back during Zero Hour, six years would have passed between Traya’s introduction and the “present”, and the present is many years back. If Traya was seven when she was adopted, she’d have been a budding pre-teen during Zero Hour. And how many years have passed since Zero Hour? During the time since then and now, the Justice League has gone through a whole ‘nother run. And let’s not forget, the DCU just threw on a whole whopping ‘nother year!

Even within “Young Justice”, Traya went from a little kid watching Pokemon to a small teenager attending a private school…and that was with the same writer doing the stories!

I don’t know how many “years” have passed, but here’s what’s happened in the DCU during the time that Traya appeared up til now:

  • Robin went from a freshman in college to splitting with Batman to becoming Nightwing to a cop in his late 20s.
  • Firestorm’s Ron Raymond went from a high schooler (I don’t think he was even a senior) to a college student, to a famous male model, to a senior respected hero, to dead.
  • Booster Gold was years away from his first appearance, let alone 20 years of stories that have happened since then.
  • The JLA was still in their satellite. Since then, there’s been JLA Detroit, JLI (Giffen’s era), the post-Zero Hour sucky team, the Morrison era, five years of post-Morrison stories and a skipped year where they don’t exist.

Traya has to be about 15 now. Instead, she’s three feet tall and looks to be about five years old!

No matter how flexible you want the DCU timeline to be, I don’t think kids can age backwards.

P.S. According to the Unauthorized Chronology of the DCU, Traya’s story occurred in “Year Nine” and we are now in “Year 23”, so Traya would be drinking age about now! Mind you, that’s unofficial and I think the timeline there is too literal to work, but even if you cut it in half, there’s no way Traya is as young as she appears in JLA #1.

: I just re-read it and noticed another thing. Lian, Arsenal’s daughter, who was BORN several years after Traya was adopted, now looks to be about three or four years old.

Need a pick me up?

Thursday, August 24th, 2006

I needed a pick-me-up. So I found a little bit of refreshing silliness in honor of Tom Cruise getting the boot by Viacom/Paramount:

But don’t feel sad for Tom Cruise. He’s happy.

And it looks like today’s an extra-special day for Matt and Trey (see previous post) because it looks like they ultimately won in the “Tom Cruise applies leverage with Viacom battle”:

South Park guys to make more movies

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006

Matt Stone and Trey Parker will satirize Godzilla movies in a couple years. They’ll also be doing a high school comedy called My All-American High.

Day by Day plunges into heady waters

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006

Chris Muir’s Day by Day has always been politically hard-hitting but conversational and fun. Now he’s heading for some pretty serious territory as Jan and Damon square off about her possibly being pregnant..

So far, the Hemingford Ledger (“Box Butte County’s Family Newspaper”) is the only newspaper carrying the strip. I would hope more would get on board. But it’ll be funny having an abortion discussion only inches away from Hagar the Horrible!

(Is the county’s butt really shaped like a box?)

I know, it may be a little silly to link you all to a strip that you can read at the bottom of every Monitor Duty, but this way you can find the storyline even a year from now.

Oh, and if there are other strips that broadcast freely and would like to be linked at the bottom, just contact me!

Apparently Claw Can Be Conquered

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006

According to DC’s November solicitations Chuck Dixon and Andy Smith’s Claw the Unconquered will be ending with issue #6.

William Castle wouldn’t do this!

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006

Live Rattlesnakes Released In ‘Snakes On A Plane’ Theater

In case you don’t get the joke, William Castle is the guy who wired up people’s seats with electricity for the scary parts in “The Tingler“. Many of his cheapo schlock horror films had such a gimmick. The John Goodman character in “Matinee” was based on him.

Oh man. Matinee is out of print on DVD! I forgot. That’s actually a good movie. Why is it the worst dreck is still available on DVD but good stuff like this Joe Dante movie can’t be had for less than $30?

Hmmm. I own that one. Maybe now’s a good time to sell.

Hitting people on the head with an anvil is OK in Britain

Monday, August 21st, 2006

“Smoking scenes in ‘Tom and Jerry’ cartoons are now banned in Britain, following a viewer’s complaint to the government agency that polices the airwaves.” See the complete article at Yahoo news.

Animated Fantastic Four for September

Saturday, August 19th, 2006

Cartoon Network has announced the broadcast schedule for the new Fantastic Four cartoon for the month of September. The article at Comics Continuum gives the titles for the first five episodes and a synopsis for each of the first four. I don’t know if it will help me get over the void in my life left by the cancellation of Justice League Unlimited, but I’ll be certain to be taping these episodes on Saturdays at 8:00 PM or at 10:00 AM the following week.

Dan DiDio discusses 52 Week 15

Saturday, August 19th, 2006

DC’s editor-in-chief Dan DiDio is interviewed at Newsarama about the major event that occurred in 52- Week 15. He discusses the decision making process that led to the major event that occurred in that book. I’m not sure why I’m avoiding a spoiler here, since the cover of the comic seemed to spoil everything on its own. If anyone was hoping that there will be an as-yet-unrevealed twist to save the character, it doesn’t sound like it’s gonna happen.

Feel that tap on your shoulders, Rolling Stones?

Saturday, August 19th, 2006

When your concert is being attended by pensioners getting senior citizen discounts and the other seats are empty because those fans are dead, God is telling you that you are too old to rock.

Jeez, I leave the place for a few days

Friday, August 18th, 2006

Bruno Kirby, R.I.P.

He was Billy Crystal’s best friend in “City Slickers” and in “When Harry Met Sally.” (They were both in “Spinal Tap” as well.) I can’t believe he’s dead already. He was so young.

“Holy Litigation Batman!”

Friday, August 18th, 2006

First off, I usually hate when a headline writer resorts to the “Holy _____” cliche when talking comics. But since this entry deals with the TV show I think it’s appropriate. Now, on to the news.

Deborah Dozier Potter, daughter of 60’s Batman TV show producer William Dozier, is suing 20th Century Fox Film Corporation for $4.4 million.

Her father’s company, Greenway Productions Inc., produced the series and had a contract with Fox for distribution. In March 2005 she discovered a contract between Fox and ABC, which aired the show, that allegedly entitles Greenway Productions to 26% of the net profits from said agreement.

Snakes on a Plane

Thursday, August 17th, 2006

It’s been said in the Beatles’ last years performing live in concerts (and this legend is true; don’t doubt it) that you could never actually hear the rock group, them singing their songs, or their music… over the roaring, cheering noise of their numerous, collected fans.

In a way, that describes my experience with the Sneak Peek (because the opening night, and opening day is Friday the 18th!) of Snakes on a Plane! The movie is good. That audience was terrible. It was horrible. What a bunch of idiots. I want a refund. From them.

Essentially Samuel L. Jackson has some great lines, and there is some other good dialogue, too. Too bad I don’t get to here it. That’s right, when Sam Jackson first appears he sets off this wonderful line, that appeared in a great vintage action flick way long ago in my childhood, and I knew what his first line was… just as I could not here him utter his first line in the flick because the audience cheered, and laughed! There is that one great line? The one they inserted when they upped the film’s rating from PG-13 to R with new scenes by fan demand? That one great line? I didn’t get to hear it! Well, I got to hear the words, I got to hear the line. I never heard Sam Jackson over the combined simultaneous reciting of the cult crowd in the front rows.

Thanks a lot, jerkwads!

I hope you go to that special hell reserved for child molesters… and people who talk at the theatre!

I liked the movie a lot. The movie was good regardless of what I think or feel. It probably wasn’t the “best movie ever made” as Samuel L. Jackson speculated in that wonderful series of electronic invitations he helped craft for promotional purposes. It was however, at least three times as good as X-Men 3, if not much much much superior to our first summer movie. This movie was the movie of the summer, what I waited a good deal of time to see. Right after Superman this made my summer. This was the anticipation. This was what God made anticipation for! Why is that? It is because the concept is so pure! What is the title of the movie? What is the movie about? It’s the same thing!

This movie lives up to its name…