19th Feb2014

Comical Thoughts – 2/19/14

by Will

comicalI haven’t really discussed comics too much lately, even though I’ve still been reading a few. Here are some thoughts on what I’ve read recently.

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She-Hulk #1: good issue, but I’m not sure if this is a monthly for me. The one odd thing, however, was that the opening spread contains a pic of her drinking with Tony Stark and Thor. Um…Tony’s an alcoholic, though he’s clearly drinking a martini. It’s funny that Marvel can make sure that nobody smokes, but no one caught that? Anyway, the art works well for the story, even though I’m not really in love with it.

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Batman #28: a flash forward issue. Can I just go on record and say that I hate EVERYTHING that Scott Snyder has brought to the Batman mythos? There must be something wrong with me, as everyone else raves over his work, and I just don’t see it. I’m tired of Zero Year and I really don’t know if I’m onboard for this Batman Eternal weekly. Anyway, I hope the Spoiler fans will finally shut up after this issue.

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Red Hood and the Outlaws #25: This was important because it’s a Zero Year tie-in. Since Zero Year takes place six years in the past, and Jason Todd is 15, that makes him 21 now. We’ll come back to this later. It also links Talia to the weird mystical mumbo jumbo that Jason studied after his “death”.

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Cataclysm: Ultimate Comics X-Men #3: What an utter waste of a miniseries. Clearly, Marvel felt that every Ultimate title needed a Cataclysm spinoff, but this one did absolutely nothing for me. They spend three issues in a pocket universe, where Galactus isn’t even a threat to them. Wasted potential.

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Earth 2 Annual #2: I dropped the Earth 2 series early on because it wasn’t the “real Earth”. Still, I became fascinated when I heard they were introducing a new Batman, since that Earth’s original Batman died during the events of the first issue. Well, the new Batman turns out to be Thomas Wayne, and we’re given a different view of Bruce’s origin than we’ve had in the past. Thomas Wayne is essentially the Earth-2 Hourman, who happens to wear the Batman suit to honor the son he disappointed. I’m intrigued enough that I might give this book another shot.

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Batman and Robin Annual #2: this issue features the New 52 interpretation of Dick Grayson’s first mission as Robin, as told through flashbacks. The important thing about this is that Dick becomes Robin at the age of 16 in the New 52 and not much younger, as in other incarnations. Let’s say Batman took Dick on as Robin in the second year of his mission, so that’s 5 years ago, making Dick 21 – just like Jason. So, this probably helped the “visual continuity” of Robin, as the replacement looked to be the exact age of the Robin who left to become Nightwing. To criminals and Gothamites, it would look like Robin has been the same guy the entire time, even though there were two different people behind the mask. This is a lot less jarring than Batman replacing an 18 year old with another 12 year old. This seems like one of the rare benefits of the new streamlined New 52 timeline.

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Black Widow: I can’t decide if I like this book or not. Basically, it seems like Marvel wants to repeat the Hawkeye formula: here’s what an Avengers does on days off from the team. Sadly, I don’t find Natasha’s life that interesting. The art, by Phil Noto, is beautiful but the stories are pretty formulaic. She goes on a mission, she kills some folks, there’s a twist, and she comes back home. It also seems odd that she does this because I seem to remember that the Avengers have something of a morality clause. In Hawkeye, Clint got arrested and was reminded of said clause. How does that not apply to Natasha, out and about murdering people?

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Another problem is that I feel like I’ve read this story before. You see, back when Wizard tried their hand at publishing comics through Black Bull, they had a book called Beautiful Killer. It was about a redheaded assassin who happened to be drawn by Phil Noto. The book was clearly influenced by Black Widow and Spider-Woman, so to have Noto on the actual Black Widow almost seems like a retread. Each issue is self contained, so I can’t say that this series would probably read better in trade form. Four issues in, I just don’t know if this is a monthly obligation for me.

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Deadpool #23: I love this series so much. It’s funny because I never really liked the 90s Deadpool stuff, but I’ve been onboard since the Daniel Way series. I loved how Coulson was part of this story arc, and the Watchmen reference on the last page was pretty funny.

origin22Origin II #2: I’m not sure what to think of this mini yet. I’m wondering if it’s like its predecessor, in that Origin was really only a great reading experience after it was collected. To read it issue by issue made it feel disjointed in a way. Two issues in, it’s not grabbing me, even if Mr. Sinister happens to be a main character. I also wonder if Kieron Gillen is the perfect choice to write this. After all, this was Paul Jenkins’s territory, as he wrote the first series, as well as the bookend Wolverine: The End. Also, I haven’t really enjoyed anything that Gillen has brought to the Marvel Universe. He was great on his indie stuff, like Phonogram, but his mainstream work has left me disappointed. I think I might drop this in single issues and come back once it’s been collected.

Well, that’s me. What have y’all been reading lately?

17th Jan2014

West Week Ever – 1/17/14

by Will

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I didn’t watch anything on Netflix this week, but I used the time to catch up on some TV. First up, I watched Enlisted on Fox. Someone on Twitter said that it’s basically Stripes: The TV Series, and they weren’t wrong. It focuses on a war hero who, due to insubordination, gets bumped down to a Rear Detachment unit back home with his two brothers. He’s dying to get back to combat, and his Rear D unit is made up of a bunch of underachievers. By the end of the episode, however, he learns that Rear D is a valuable unit, as they take care of the families of the soldiers who’ve been deployed. The show was really funny and has a lot of heart. I’d expect big things if Fox had put it on Tuesday with the rest of their comedies. Instead, it’s being burned off on Friday nights with Raising Hope. The numbers weren’t too good for the premiere, but Fox execs say they’re committed to it for its initial 13-episode run. You should definitely add it to your DVR.

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I caught the 2-episode season premiere of Girls, and I still can’t figure out how I feel about the show. I don’t have HBO, but luckily they put the episodes on their official YouTube channel. I thought this meant that certain things would be censored. After all, when I watched the free preview of the House of Lies pilot, there were black bars over all the naughty bits. I was wrong to think that was going to happen here. Despite YouTube’s content rules, nothing about the Girls episodes was changed. We still saw Lena Dunham’s sad little boobies, and we also saw Jessa go down on another girl – all on free, non-age verified YouTube. I was kinda impressed by the balls on that decision. Anyway, the titular girls are still deplorable, and Adam’s even weirder than before. Nice cameo by Amy Schumer, but that didn’t really help the need for diversity on that show. Shoshanna’s still my favorite character, though this article points out that she seems to have no real motivation for being there.

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How I Met Your Mother‘s writers must’ve just said “Fuck it. It’s the last season.” No, I’m not talking about the quality of the writing, but I’m referring to the fact that this week’s episode was full-on yellowface. If you’re familiar with the show, then you probably know about the Slap Bet – Marshall won a bet with Barney and won the opportunity to slap Barney, as hard as he could, over the course of what became 8 slaps. In the continuity of the show, there’s always been some build-up to the slaps, and they tend to happen on “Slapsgiving”. Well, this season, in “Slapsgiving 3: Slappointment in Slapmarra”, the writers went full retard and told a tale of Marshall traveling to Shanghai to learn the Slap of A Million Exploding Suns. Yes, every chop socky Asian trope is displayed in the episode, and it even includes Ted looking like this:

slapsgivingThe creators have, since, apologized, but it’s a sour note for the show to go out on. After all, the series finale is in March, and this isn’t the kind of legacy that it should leave behind. I tend not to take things too seriously, but even I was watching the episode like, “Oh, shit. They’re really doing this?”

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It was announced on Wednesday that the 1966 Batman TV show would finally be released on DVD. This is a big deal because the rights have been tied up forever, as Warner Bros owns Batman, yet Fox owned the show. That said, I still feel like this was the worst-kept secret in Hollywood, as it was pretty obvious this was going to happen due to the onslaught of Batman ’66 merchandising over the past year. We’ve gotten everything from comics to action figures to Barbie dolls. There was no reason to be pimping an almost 50 yr old show if the DVD thing wasn’t happening. Still, as excited as people seem to be about the DVDs, I don’t really get it. I mean, if you really wanted them, you have them already. I bought my complete series for $40 at a comic show. Sure, it’s bootleg, but the quality’s just fine. I know that I’m not alone, so I feel that the extras are really going to make or break this set. There are folks lining up already, saying “Take my money”, but I’m gonna need to learn more about this before I get too excited.

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From here on out, I will be referring to the star of 12 Years A Slave as “Chitlin Ejector”. I can’t pronounce his real name, and I feel his new name is urban, yet futuristic.

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I had a bit of a milestone this week, as I got the most hits I’ve ever had in the history of the site. No, it wasn’t West Week Ever that did it. It turns out that a 10-year old post of mine was linked by NPR’s Code Switch blog. If you’ve never gone that far back in my archives (or you just don’t feel like clicking that link), I posted a quote from John Byrne’s message board where he gave his opinion of Jessica Alba being cast as Sue Storm. And he also said that he thinks Latinas with blonde hair look like hookers. Since his message board archive doesn’t go back that far, it seems like my snapshot of the conversation is one of the last remaining pieces of evidence that it ever existed. Anyway, the Code Switch blog was discussing race and identity in comics (you should totally read it!), and that link drove my traffic through the roof. I’m still feeling the residual effects of it, so welcome, new readers, if this is your first taste of West Week Ever.

When I wrote West Year Ever, I omitted another event that took place in 2013: my good friends James and Jenn came to visit. Jenn helped create this site, while you can see James in the Wonder Woman video clip I’ve been posting. Anyway, I didn’t have a pic of their visit, so they got no mention. Still, you can follow them on twitter: @snoopyjenkins (James) and @reappropriate (Jenn).

In Case You Missed It This Week

Track Star: Mr. Mister Vs. Boy Meets Girl

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On Monday, it was announced that Michael Douglas will be playing Hank Pym in Marvel’s Ant-Man movie. This is a pretty big deal for two reasons. First of all, the tabloids had Douglas on deathwatch just a year ago, so it’s great that he’s not only still with us, but ready to tackle such a meaty role. It’s also important because it means that Paul Rudd will actually be portraying the second Ant-Man, Scott Lang. This bit of casting made the Ant-Man movie plans that much clearer, and it’s gotten folks excited for the movie in a way that they hadn’t been prior to the announcement. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has been pretty “meh” since the introduction of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but this was just the shot in the arm that the franchise needed. For this reason, Michael Douglas had the West Week Ever.

06th Dec2013

West Week Ever – 12/6/13

by Will

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We’re back! Did everyone have a nice Thanksgiving? I thought about writing last Friday, but how many of you would’ve actually read it? Not many, I presume. So, we took a week off. That just means there’s twice as much stuff to talk about this week!

One thing I miss about Thanksgivings of years past is the Fox Kids TV Takeover. Back before Fox Kids was sold to ABC/Disney, there was an annual tradition that took place on the Friday after ever Thanksgiving. As this was before the prevalence of internet, kids were invited to send postcards to vote for their favorite shows. Then, on Black Friday, the Fox Kids lineup would consist of only the shows that received the most votes. It was rarely a surprise, as you could pretty much guess what you were going to see: Batman: The Animated Series, Power Rangers, X-Men, etc. The main perk was it was one of the rare times you’d get to see some shows outside of Saturday morning. They weren’t even new episodes, but it was still something I used to look forward to watching. I wish ABC Family would find some way to replicate it with an Eek! The Cat marathon or something.

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While we’re talking about watching stuff, I guess it’s a good time for a Netflix update. I’ve backed off of the movie-a-night schedule I had going there for a while. Lately, I’ve been rewatching The League because I’ve forgotten a lot of the early episodes. On the movie front, I did watch The Wedding Weekend – a movie so nice they named it thrice. No, seriously, when it was filmed, it was called Shut Up and Sing. Then, they got sued because that was the name of that Dixie Chicks documentary. Then, they renamed it to Sing Now Or Forever Hold Your Peace. Then, at some point, it simply became The Wedding Weekend. It’s about a 7-man a cappella group that reunites 15 years after college to sing for the wedding of one of the members. Drama ensues, old wounds are reopened, and there’s sexual tension. If you’re looking for an accurate depiction of collegiate a cappella, and what happens afterward, this movie does a pretty good job of capturing it. There’s the whole notion that you’ll never get those days back, and your “stardom” is fleeting. The movie seems to suggest that those days may end, but you have to continue to make those moments happen in the “real world” as best you can. It’s kind of depressing at times, but I enjoyed it. If anyone has Netflix, though, I need you to do me a favor: try to watch this movie and let me know if the audio syncs up. For the first time since I got Netflix, this is the first movie where the audio just wouldn’t sync, so I felt like I was watching a foreign film that was dubbed. This doesn’t happen on anything else that I watch, but it happened every time I tried to watch The Wedding Weekend. Does Netflix have a bad encode? Was it just my computer? Help a brother out!

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Well, it’s certainly been a week of Twitter zaniness. I’ve been known to stir up trouble on Twitter, and this week was no exception. Before we get to that, though, something else weird happened: I got a reply from a tweet I sent 2 and a half years ago! In June 0f 2011, I tweeted:

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Some backstory: Ghostwriter was a PBS show about a ghost who promoted literacy, while Jeremy Miller was Ben Seaver on Growing Pains. In the second Ghostwriter adventure, he actually joins the team and then he’s never mentioned, or seen, again.

Anyway, the other day, I got a response to that tweet that merely said:

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Apparently, this chick is his fiancee? I checked out her feed and it seems like she’s basically doing PR for him, so I guess she Googled his name and my tweet came up. It’s still weird to receive a response so long after sending the tweet. I guess you never really know who’s going to see what you write…as we’re about to find out.

So, the other night, my pal @timdogg98 retweeted this from comic artist J. Scott Campbell:

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Here’s the full pic:

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If you don’t know a lot about Campbell’s work, a lot of his women tend to look the same. I’m actually a fan, but I feel like Campbell’s been phoning it in lately. So, that led to this exchange:

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I thought that would be the end of it until the man himself decided to make an appearance:

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Not really sure what to make of that emoji. Was he taking it all as good fun? Was that the shorthand way to say “Cool story, bro”? The long and the short of it is that he clearly has a filter for his name, as I deliberately didn’t tag him in that thread, nor did I respond to Tim’s tweets that mentioned him. Lesson: I need to stop talking shit on Twitter. OR I need to talk MORE shit on Twitter. I haven’t really settled on the takeaway lesson yet.

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Speaking of comics, I recently discovered a book from Oni Press called Letter 44 that I actually really enjoyed. Every outgoing president leaves a letter for the incoming president, and this is the letter meant for #44. Everyone assumed that the 43rd president was a real moron who started unnecessary wars and ran the country into the ground. What the letter reveals, however, is that NASA discovered an advanced race in space that may be preparing an invasion. So, the wars on foreign soil were really just tactics to make sure we had a battle-ready military should the need arise. Now, the 44th President has to carry on what was started by his predecessor, and also decide whether to tell the American people. It was a really strong first issue, and I’m curious to see where the story goes. Few of my local shops dabble in indie books, however, so I may have to wait for the trade. You can read the entire first issue here.

This Week’s Post

Virginia Comicon (& Rob Liefeld) In Pictures

Links I Love

The TwinkieMcRib Nerd Lunch/Storify

Please Take A Moment And Read This Hilarious Amazon Review Of A $40,000, 85-Inch Television – UPROXX

Amazon Reviews Written by James Thach – Amazon

12 of Zack Morris’ Ex-Girlfriends That Would Make a Better Wonder Woman than Gal Gadot – UnderScoopFire!

The Conversation We Should Not Have About Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman – The Nerds of Color

Three are no longer with us (as well as Nelson Mandela, RIP), while the other’s life will never be the same. Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

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Well, this one should’ve been obvious, as she was the only choice who wasn’t either canceled or deceased. This former Israeli soldier/model had her life turned upside down as the world discovered she’d been cast as Wonder Woman in the sequel to Man of Steel. Many are wondering if she’s got the physique to pull it off, but that’s what horse tranquilizers are for. She’ll be fine. It’s not like she’s gonna make the movie suck. Warner Bros has that taken care of by shoehorning every DC character into this movie that they can. Still, Gadot went from a virtual unknown to Hollywood’s new It Girl overnight. For that reason, Gal Gadot had the West Week Ever.

25th Nov2013

Mail Call Monday – Facts & Figures

by Will

Welcome to the return of Mail Call Monday! I’ve been a bit of an eBay whore lately, so I’ve gotten quite a few packages. I wish I could say that these were holy grails or something, but they’re really just the result of boredom. Basically, I searched for auctions that were ending soon, and checked to see if any of them interested me. It’s a cheap tactic, but it yielded some pretty nice results. Let’s see what I got, shall we?

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I wish I could say that buying this figure was the result of some sort of racial obligation, but that’s just not true. I really just wanted him because he was rare, and he was the one Thor figure I never found at retail. Luckily, someone had him at retail price so I jumped on it. Sure, I know he probably turned up at Five Below of TJ Maxx (which I’m sure you’ll tell me in the comments), but I’m not disappointed. I also think there should be a metal band of all black guys called “Heimdall”.

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I really just got this to flip, as I already own it. I love this figure ’cause he’s really to scale with the rest of the Batman: The Animated Series/Justice League figures. This version of Tim Drake was much younger than Dick Grayson’s Robin, and the diminutive size of the figure shows that. Mattel has reused those BTAS molds time and again, but they haven’t done much with this one, so he’s still a bit harder to come by. As a strange coincidence, it turns out that this item came from Diamond – my former employer. Yup, they sold it through their Hakes Americana subsidiary. Small world…

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I got this from my dear friend @Ponderiss, as she accidentally ended up with two and knew that I’d love it. I think this may end up on my desk at work.

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“I’m The Juggernaut, bitch!” God, did that meme get old fast. And then Ratner made things even worse by putting that line in X-Men: The Last Stand. It wasn’t even in context with the scene and just came across as unnecessarily aggressive. Anyway, I collect 3 types of Marvel Legends: X-Men, Ultimate Marvel, and movie figures. This falls into 2 of those categories, and I only paid $5 for him so it wasn’t too much of a sacrifice.

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This X3 Colossus came from the same seller as Juggernaut up there. Again, he fulfilled 2 categories, and was another $5. The additional shipping to add him to Juggy was $1, so why not, right?

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This guy’s a longer story. $5 Figure Guy above had one of these for, you guessed it, $5. I bid on it but missed the email telling me that I’d been outbid. Turns out the winner beat me by $0.50. By this point, I’d already made up my mind that I wanted the figure, so I went looking for the next cheapest offering. I can’t say I got him doe $5, but I did OK – especially when I know that the seller lost money on shipping, based on the size of the box this came in.

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As I’ve written about in the past, I collect Toy Fair, industry-only catalogs from the major toy companies. I didn’t have any from Mattel, and this also happened to be a good year: 2003. In 2003, Mattel debuted the 6″ Batman line, which eventually led to the DC Universe Classics line. It was also in the middle of the Masters of the Universe toyline revival.Unlike most of the thin catalogs that I own, this one is pretty thick -basically the size of a modern IKEA catalog. Here are two of my favorite page spreads from the book:

 

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I also got a late 80s Kenner Toy Fair catalog – 1989, to be exact. While it was too late to have Super Powers, this was still a great year, as the book contains Police Academy, The Real Ghostbusters, Robocop, and Starting Lineup figures. Here are two of my favorite pics from that catalog:

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One day, I might get around to posting actual scans but that’s all you get for now.

So, that brings this edition of Mail Call Monday to a close. Expect another one soon, as I kinda went on a bender this weekend, including getting my first S.H. Figuarts Power Rangers figure. That was a can of worms I really tried not to open…

22nd Nov2013

West Week Ever – 11/22/13

by Will

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Who knew you guys would like a post about Pure Moods?! That was my most popular post in a LONG time. Hell, it even did better than West Week Ever. So, after today, every week will be Pure Moods Friday!

I’m kidding. Even I can’t eke that much material out of a compilation CD series. Still, I’m glad you enjoyed it, and thanks for reading it!

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I found myself in the middle of a flame war this week, as I cosigned a friend’s opinion on a porn star’s bad tit job on Twitter. Turns out said porn star knows how to use Google, and got all offended. Hey, get mad at your doctor, not us! Anyway, this led to a rebuttal post, then her PR guy got involved, trying to make me and a bunch of folks look bad. At the end of the day, I’m not sorry for what I said, which was that she was either dumb or just got around to googling herself since the offending tweet was sent a month ago. I, personally, didn’t say anything about her atrocious tits. Whoops! Oh well.

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It took an SNL performance and several more listens, but Artpop has finally grown on me. The strongest songs are “Venus”, “G.U.Y.”, “Dope”, “Gypsy”, and the title track, “Artpop”. Still don’t think it’s as strong as Born This Way, but I was pretty hard on it last week. It also debuted at #1, so it’s got that going for it. Still, 5 strong songs out of 15 isn’t great, especially when it’s the other songs that’ll probably be released as singles.

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Something’s been bothering me about this season of How I Met Your Mother – have they retconned Robin’s sister? If you go all the way back to season 2, Robin’s younger sister, Katie, comes to town and plans to lose her virginity. The gang talks her out of it, and she decides to wait. And then she was never mentioned again. In the middle of all the Robin/Robin Sparkles flashbacks, it’s almost like she was an only child. Apparently, Robin lived with her mom during the Sparkles years, so maybe it’s a half sister? Either way, she hasn’t been mentioned since that episode, yet there’s a wedding on the horizon, and still no one’s mentioning her. Hell, they finally broached the topic of Robin’s mom (who won’t be making the trip to the ceremony), but still haven’t mentioned the sister. This seems kinda sloppy for a show that has always tried to do right by its continuity.

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In the past, I’ve written about Geeks for Tots – the holiday contest run by The Robot’s Pajamas. Sadly, due to work and school commitments, Geeks for Tots won’t be happening this year. All is not lost, however, as Infinite Hollywood has an alternative: Infinite Toys for Tots. Basically, the site will match any toy donation that you can prove with a picture of you dropping a toy into a Toys for Tots bin. GFT used to get a lot of backlash for the fact that donors could win prizes for donating. People would say, “Why can’t you just donate for the pleasure of doing something good?” Well, this does just that, as you get nothing but that squishy feeling! You can read more about it here, but let’s help some less fortunate kids to have a great holiday season!

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Speaking of the holiday season, now would be a great time for you to revisit Will’s World of Wonder. We’ve been quiet, but we’re still alive and kicking. In fact, I recently added a bunch of vintage Power Rangers zords, as well as some other trinkets. When you’re looking for something special for the fanboy in your life, choose Will’s World of Wonder!

Though I haven’t sung with them in 10 years, my collegiate a cappella group, Last Call, just released their new album. It sounds great, and if you’re a fan of music without accompaniment, you can get it from iTunes. Here’s a sampler:

Links I Loved

Dave Holmes on TRL, Jesse Camp and 1998’s Other Big MTV Moments – Vulture

Stretching Spandex Over Melanin Won’t Make Comics More Diverse – The Nerds of Color

Tanya Tate’s Boobs (Risky for Work) – The Robot’s Pajamas

The 50 Sexiest People Born in 1985 – UnderScoopFire!

Comics are for Children – The Nerds of Color

Best-Lock Continues Its Reign of Terrible Licensed Construction Toys with Stargate SG-1 – Double Dumbass On You

One had a city in the palm of his hands, while the other was just holding her boobs. One is helping the needy, while the other is kinda seedy. Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

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No one had a week like Batkid. Technically, he probably should’ve had the West Week Ever last week, but his takeover of San Francisco happened after the post was published. Still, nothing that happened this week even came close to the media juggernaut of a little, cancer-stricken kid fighting crime with 10,000 volunteers in his corner. They say that the whole day will end up with a price tag of $105,000, but who cares, really? It seemed like a pretty fun day for all involved. If anything, I feel sorry for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, as this just raises the bar for them. It used to be kids only wanted a giant ice cream sundae or a few minutes to visit with John Cena. Now, they’re ALL gonna wanna take over cities. The charity world will never be the same after this, and that’s why Batkid had the West Week Ever.

24th Oct2013

West Week Ever – 10/25/13 – Trekkies CAN Be Warsies!

by Will

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This is a special West Week Ever this week, as I decided to tackle one of my pop culture blind spots: the original Star Wars trilogy. I can’t remember if I’ve ever actually seen them before, as I have no real lasting memory of them. So, I’m taking the “born again virgin” approach: I’m saying it didn’t happen, and just acting as if that’s true. I’ve had a bit of free time on my hands lately, so yesterday I watched the whole trilogy in one sitting. Now, before we get to that, I’ve always had a bit of a “hate/hate” relationship with the Star Wars franchise. First, I hated it because I was a Trekkie (well, more of a Trekker, based on more recent definitions), and I grew up believing that Trekkies couldn’t be Warsies. You had to choose your camp, and stick with it. Next, I had no real desire to get to know the Star Wars franchise, as it seemed so daunting. Sure, there were only 3 movies (6 now), but there’s also the Expanded Universe, the comics, the video games, etc. It just seemed like I had missed the boat. Still, you can’t dabble in pop culture without coming into contact with Star Wars references. At this point, I know all the major players, all the quotes (without context), and the general gist of the franchise. Still, I needed to bite the bullet and finally sit down and watch the movies, even if just to know what I’m looking at on toy shelves. So, what did I think? Well, here are my thoughts as I was sitting through my Warsathon:

A New Hope

Rebel security is just a bunch of retirees in penis helmets

How do they take Vader seriously? I mean, look at him!

R2 is clearly not built for this Tatooine’s  terrain

That bugfaced droid looks cool, but that other one is clearly a cafeteria trashcan

Luke’s whiny line about picking up power converters makes him come off as such a douche. Great first impression.

Ha! The “help me obi wan” line

How come Aunt Beru is still dressed like a 70s housewife?

The score really is amazing.

That’s right, Luke. Just play with the sword made of lasers like it’s nothing

They’re burning the Jawas’ bodies? That’s kinda cold

Kinda fucked up that Luke didn’t defend the droids at Mos Eisley. “We don’t serve their kind!” “Sorry, guys. wait outside.”

Are there no women on the Imperial side? Even though stormtrooper suits have those little titty wells on the chest?

Leia wields a blaster like she’s never held one before. Which is probably the most accurate way to play that scene

I knew all the quotes. I just didn’t know the context

They really don’t mourn their dead in this universe

You knew Biggs wasn’t making it back when he wouldnt listen to Luke’s stories

Obi Wan suffered something of an anticlimactic death, huh?

Empire Strikes Back

Yeti!!!

This franchise would be a lot funnier if John Ritter had been Han Solo. They even had the same hair.

R2 and 3PO – best friends, like Bert and Ernie? Or lovers, like Bert and Ernie?

Lando’s perm should’ve been enough to let everyone know he was gonna turn on ‘em

Did the lightsaber instantly cauterize the wound?

Kind of a non-ending, huh?

Return of the Jedi

Nappy Chewie!

There are way too many creatures in this movie

Defrosted Han looks like Jerry O’Connell

I know he was in that car accident and all, but Hamill’s Luke is starting to look like Miss Jane Hathaway from the Beverly Hillbillies.

How come all the blacks seem to work for Jabba?

Boba Fett went out like a bitch. I’ll never understand why you people love him so much. He died in such a slapstick manner that would squander any cool points he may have amassed up to that point

All the women in the galaxy, and Luke immediately knows Leia is his sister? Oh yeah, “The Force”…

Ewoks!

I wanted Leia to say, “But I KISSED You!”

I kinda miss bratty Luke. Now he sounds too much like Jesus, with all this “Father, don’t let me die” stuff.

“It’s a trap!”

Black X-Wing pilot!!!

Ewoks care more about their dead than any human does in this entire trilogy

Those Skywalkers love losing hands, huh?

I know he’s old, but you mean to tell me that the Emperor couldn’t fight off being picked up and tossed away like that?

I have no clue how Wedge survived all 3 movies.

I have to say, I loved those movies. I honestly did. It may also have something to do with the fact that the Abrams Trekverse has really soured me on that whole franchise for the moment. Still, I finally feel like I’m in the club with the rest of you guys! All I had to do was watch 3 movies, there’s no pesky television show to keep up with, and there were no real weak spots. While A New Hope is a great complete movie, Empire had more going for it – if only it had a proper ending instead of the whole “To Be Continued” vibe. ROTJ was OK, but it had too damn much of a Jim Henson thing going on. And it needed more bratty Luke. So, there you have it. I’m one of you now. So, where do I pick up my lightsaber? Will they mail it to me? Anyway, Star Wars had the West Week Ever.

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AirBaseMcDs

Lately, I’ve found myself fascinated by fast food – more accurately, I’m curious about the fast food outposts on military bases. Who runs those? Are they individually owned franchises, or are they owned by corporate? And the civilians working there, are they locals or were they shipped over? Are there top gun cashiers just waiting to be deployed to the Taco Bell in Kuwait? “I’m getting deployed next month.” “Oh, really? What branch?” “KFC.” Anybody reading this have any knowledge on this subject? I have SO many questions!

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Speaking of fast food, I hate when I get a Frosty at Wendy’s, and they give me a straw. A Frosty ain’t a shake, bitch! It’s a frozen dairy treat. Now give me my friggin’ spoon!

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On the Netflix front, I watched Jeff, Who Lives At Home. I can’t really describe it, but it was enjoyable enough. Great cast, with Jason Segel, Ed Helms, Susan Sarandon, and even Rae Dawn Chong.  I was drawn to it not only for the cast, but also because it was from the Duplass brothers (The League).  Segel’s character lives his life by looking for signs, and the movie follows what happens on one particular day when a ton of storylines converge. It’s a tight, contained little movie, but nothing that’ll blow you a way. There are worse ways to kill an hour and a half.

I think LEGO Marvel Superheroes is going to be the first video game that I buy during its release week. I loved LEGO Batman, and this one seems like a bit of a no brainer. Right now, though, I’m trying to figure out where I should buy it. If I go to Walmart, I get a cool War Machine LEGO minifigure (which I really want). If I go to Target, I get a Loki keychain (I’d probably just rip off the chain part and put him with my other minifigures). Toys “R” Us, however, seems to have the best deal, as you get a $15 gift card with purchase. I want that War Machine, but, c’mon, 15 free dollars?! I think I’m going to TRU later today.

Links I Loved

We Do Not Need a Wonder Woman Movie – The Nerds of Color

The 100 Sexiest Men on Television – UnderScoopFire!

01st Oct2013

The Con-Clusion: Monster-Mania 26

by Will

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If you’ve been reading the site recently, then you know that September was a month filled with conventions. It all started with Baltimore Comic-Con, which was followed by Retro Con, and finally there was Monster-Mania 26. I’m not even remotely a horror guy, so why did I go to Monster-Mania? Well, it’s simple – there was going to be a Batman ’66 reunion with Adam West, Burt Ward, Lee Meriwether, and Yvonne Craig. Stan Lee and Adam West have always been on my Must Meet list, and since I met Stan 2 years ago, now it was time to check Adam off the list. So, even if that meant I would be braving a horror convention, it was time to meet Adam West.

I wanted to guarantee that I met Adam, and luckily there was a VIP package similar to when I met Stan Lee. Unluckily, that package cost $200. For that price, I was guaranteed a picture with Adam (with my own camera), an autograph, admission to the show the whole weekend, and admission to an exclusive dessert party Friday night. Before buying that pass, I spoke with some former Monster-Mania attendees to see if it was worth it. While the price was steep, I liked that it guaranteed the meeting, meaning I wouldn’t have to waste all day in line for the chance of a meeting. So, I paid it. It was around this time that Yvonne Craig canceled due to a family health matter. No Batgirl? Oh well, there was still Batman.

Before going, I couldn’t really decide what I wanted Adam to sign for me. I thought about the Batman ’66 figures, but I don’t like the idea of signed toys, which aren’t as easy to display as a signed book. I thought about Batman ’66 #1, but he didn’t really have anything to do with it. It’s a comic vaguely based upon his likeness, but that’s about it. So, I Googled some pics, and came up with this one that I really liked:

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Sure, most folks would choose a picture of Batman and Robin, but something about this one just spoke to me. It’s as GQ as Bruce and Dick could be during that era, and I liked that Bruce looked pensive. Since it was a scan of an old trading card, it had also faded in a way that I actually liked. So, I went to Kinkos (I’ll probably never call it FedEx Office), and printed out a full page version of the pic. Finally, I was ready for the show.

Friday afternoon, I got off work early and headed up to Hunt Valley where the show was being held. The VIP session was set to start at 4:30, but I didn’t get there until around 5 due to traffic. A guy at the front desk directed me to the Garden Room, where we were to wait for our turn to meet Adam. At this point, the guy sitting next to me asked, “Did they tell you about Burt Ward?” What did this mean? Was he dead? Had he gone on a killing spree? What an odd way to start a conversation. Anyway, I said, “No, what about Burt Ward?” Apparently, for an extra $30, Burt would get in the picture with you and Adam. Now, I’d already paid $200 to get this far, and now they wanted more money? Still, I had considered trying to get something signed from Burt, and I heard he charged $60 just for that. So, the additional $30 didn’t sound so bad. Sure, I kinda just wanted my pic with Batman, but how often can you get a pic with Batman AND Robin? So, I went out and told the staff guy that I wanted the Burt package, and I was whisked away to another ballroom to wait with a different group of folks. After I waited for about 20 minutes, they started taking t-shirt sizes. I guess we’re getting free t-shirts. It was at this point that a drunk guy got belligerent, and started asking if Adam was even there. He said that he was tired of waiting (keep in mind it was only 5:20, and the room opened at 4:30), and that this was bullshit. The organizer tried to tell him that he had to take care of getting everyone’s shirts, and drunk guy said, “I AM everyone!” Finally, they offered to give him his money back and escorted him out of the room. About 5 minutes later, Adam walked in with a “Ho, what do we have here?”

Did I mention that I was the only black person there? It may not matter, but I feel I should mention it here. When the guy was giving out shirts, it was like he was going out of his way to avoid giving me mine, but then he had the gall to try to defuse the situation with, “Nothing personal. I’m just trying to do it like this.” Like what? He didn’t seem to have any kind of system until it came to me, and then he felt he should say something before I “got all black” on him. That’s how it felt, at least. And some dude and his girlfriend actually cut in line in front of me and some other folks, but the other folks didn’t say anything and I didn’t feel comfortable enough to say anything. This was Baltimore, which isn’t the most hospitable place. You may know it from The Wire, but it’s also a cult city devoted to the Ravens and the color purple. I hate most things about it, but I knew I was on their turf, so I didn’t want to start any shit.

Anyway, Burt wasn’t ready for pics yet, so Adam was going to sign stuff first. They personalize everything to keep you from eBaying it, so they asked my name, and Adam proceeded to write “To William” on it. While it was less of an assembly line than the Stan meeting, it felt less personal. I actually got to speak to Stan, while Adam’s handlers protected him, feeding him things to sign. Didn’t even get to shake his hand (maybe he’s a germaphobe). I told him that it was an honor to meet him, as he handed my pic back to me. He said something that clearly wasn’t memorable as I can’t tell you what it was. It was probably something as mundane as “There ya go.” Oh, and he used a silver pen which barely showed up on my pic :-(

AdamSig

Once the signing was done, we got back in line for the pics. By this point, Burt was there and he did not look his best. There are few things worse than an older man who dies his hair jet black. Anyone who’s seen Return to the Batcave knows that Burt has gray hair. So, at what point did he decide to basically put shoe polish on his head? It was kinda disappointing, as he looked like a giant, special boy. Can I also mention my displeasure with the picture aspect? When I paid that kind of money for Stan, it was a professional picture, with a backdrop. I’ve been told that my pic looks like I ran into them somewhere and got them to take a picture with me. No, folks – I paid for that. I feel, for that money, they could at least have had a photographer. Have it so I can pick up the photo later during the show. Sure, having it on my phone allowed me to tweet it and such, it still doesn’t look professional quality, nor was it worth what I paid. The first pic was blurry, so they were nice enough to take it again, but I don’t feel they’d have these issues with one photographer, with one good camera.

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After the pics, we got back in line, and I wondered what this new line was for. Well, it turned out that Burt was signing. “Well, cool”, I thought. I get a pic and an autograph from both. Standing in line, though, we started getting the impression that the signing wasn’t included. I asked the guy in front of me, and he told me that Burt was charging, but he wasn’t sure how much. As someone was leaving, the guy asked how much, and was told that Burt charged $50 for the autograph. Apparently, there’s a favored nations clause where Burt gets everything Adam gets. So, if Adam charges $60 for a picture, then so does Burt. I don’t really think this is fair – mainly because Batman and Robin are NOT an equal partnership. Robin is more of a junior partner, and his rates should reflect that. We’d already paid $230 just to get in this particular room, and now Burt wanted $50 more? Nah, fuck that noise. I got out of line and walked out.

My lone spoil

My lone spoil

Since I’d already come all that way, I figured I should at least check out the showroom floor. Did I mention that I didn’t feel comfortable? Because I didn’t. I don’t want to say anything too negative, so as not to offend anyone, but horror fans are kinda scary. There were a LOT of people there who looked like borderline skinheads, which didn’t bode well for my lone black status. I walked around, but most of the dealers were selling old VHS movies that had been burned onto DVD. There were some toy dealers, but their prices were astronomical. I checked out a loose Marvel Legends Hawkeye, and the dealer offered to sell him to me for $25, down from the asking price of $30. Sure, he’s not easy to find, but the fact that there’s a new Hawkeye on the market  will drive prices down on the old one. I wandered into the ballroom and saw some of the “guests”. I’m not sure why I put that in quotes, but I did. Because it was Friday, the show wasn’t in full swing, so maybe people weren’t bringing their A-game. Still, I saw David Prowse, who’s at every convention. I saw Michael Madsen, but I didn’t get too close because I didn’t want him to try to sell me something, and I saw Kari Wuhrer, who looked like an attractive, middle aged diner waitress – ya know, a single mom just trying to catch a break. I just didn’t feel like it was my cup of tea, so I headed for the door after being there about an hour.

2013-09-27 18_opt

On the way out, I took some pics of the Batmobile and Batcycle on display outside the lobby. Apparently, you could have your picture taken in the Batmobile, but the photographer didn’t seem to be anywhere nearby, plus that would’ve been another $20. So, I headed for my car to begin the journey home.

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I really haven’t enjoyed this convention season. I’m not sure what it was, but in the words of U2, “I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.” It was cool meeting my pals at Retro Con, but that was about it. I didn’t go to these shows with many expectations, but even my lowered ones were not met. I did get to meet a childhood hero, and I’m thankful for that, but in no way was it worth what I paid. I don’t think I’ll ever do that again, especially since my list has been completed. I wouldn’t mind meeting Jason David Frank one day, but I know he ain’t worth more than about $50. I kinda wish I could have one last shot at fun at New York Comic-Con, but I’m fairly certain the 2013 convention season is done for me. Well, there’s always next year…

27th Sep2013

West Week Ever – 9/27/13

by Will

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20130511061034!Agents_of_SHIELD_logo

So, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. debuted this week, and I’m bound by the Geek Council to mention that. I already wrote about my thoughts on the show a few months back. After watching the pilot, nothing’s changed. I didn’t hate it, but it’s also not my new favorite show. It was a little too “Whedon” for me. A lot of folks I follow have been comparing Whedon to Aaron Sorkin, where his tried and true tropes are beginning to wear thin. I agree with that assessment, especially when it comes to TV Whedon. I’m never Captain Race Card, but I do think the team could use more diversity. Two Europeans and not even an Agent Rodriguez or Agent Jenkins? I think this is a gross oversight that I hope might be rectified in season 2. Anyway, how long before the Chloe Bennett Maxim spread?

DADS: L-R: Martin Mull, Giovanni Ribisi, Seth Green and Peter Riegert. DADS premieres Tuesday, Sept. 17 (8:00-8:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2013 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: FOX

I’ve heard that people like my TV assessments, but I didn’t feel invested enough in any new shows to do a whole post aboutthe fall season. Now that we’re a week into things, I do have a few thoughts. First off, let’s tackle the elephant in the room known as Dads. It’s clear that it only got on the schedule to appease Seth MacFarlane, but we can all agree that it’s horrible. It’s going to be DESTROYED by Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. at 8 PM, so it’s only a matter of time before Fox blinks and moves it. It would be PERFECT for the Sunday As-Long-As-Football-Doesn’t-Run-Late 7:30 slot. That’s where Fox’s multi cam sitcoms go to die. It’ll be close enough to the Animation Domination block to get that Seth “halo effect” without actually breaking up the flow of the animated shows. This will allow them to bring back Raising Hope a bit sooner than probably expected, but they have more invested in that show.

The next disappointment is Back in the Game on ABC, starring Psych‘s Maggie Lawson. She’s a recently divorced single mom who moves in with her estranged father who helps her coach her son’s ragtag little league team of losers. If you’ve seen The Bad News Bears, you already know how this works. I’m convinced that this show was presented to ABC execs as Maggie Lawson in Little Shorts and it was greenlit immediately. I wonder what this means for Psych, but they’ve been hinting at the end for some time. I mean, it’s gonna have 8 seasons! Anyway, ABC clearly doesn’t believe in the show because they would’ve given it the post-Modern Family timeslot. The Middle is a reliable player, but it’s not a proven lead-in, which is why Suburgatory was moved around in order for it to gain traction. No, the darling spot has been given to Rebel Wilson’s Super Fun Night, which looks terrible. It seems folks think Wilson’s gonna be the next Melissa McCarthy, but I see her as the next Sara Rue/Nicole Sullivan – always a bridesmaid, but never quite a bride.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine is good. Really good. Even if Andy Samberg goes full retard sometimes. I worry about it going against S.H.I.E.L.D. and I think I see how this plays out. The Mindy Project has been a critical darling, but never the strongest performer. I see Fox giving Brooklyn the post-New Girl slot for a few weeks just to see if that helps things. New Girl‘s lead-in really helped Mindy, and I think it could do the same for Brooklyn. If it works, though, what does that mean for Mindy? Fox doesn’t have another night for comedy at the moment…

FXX_logo

Speaking of questionable Fox choices, what’s the deal with the FX/FXX split? They shipped Sunny and The League over to the new FXX like it was a promotion, but was it? While Sunny is a longstanding performer for FX, it doesn’t have the clout of Archer or Louie – two shows that appear to be staying on FX. This almost seems like a vote of no confidence for FXX, especially when it could really benefit from having those two shows. What’s the point of FX as a network anyway, as everyone has already seen Taken and Iron Man by now. Isn’t that all they show? Are there big plans in store for FX other than burning off that 100-episode order of Anger Management?

don-jon-tony-danza-joseph-gordon-levitt

Joseph Gordon Levitt’s Don Jon is such a “wait for Redbox” movie that I wouldn’t be surprised if they co-produced it. It’s about a guy who learned everything he knows about relationships from porn. He sounds like everyone I went to high school with.

Last week, I was honored to be a part of the Nerds of Color videocast “Hard N.O.C. Life”, with special guests Larry Hama and Joseph Illidge. If you’re reading this site, you already know Larry (he created most of the characters for G.I. Joe!), but you may not know that Joe was editor of the Batman titles during the late 90s storylines such as “No Man’s Land”. I’ve actually known Joe for years, but it was great to talk to him in this forum. We discussed diversity in comics, the anniversary of Milestone Media, and more. You can check out the show here.

Links I Loved

Cynthia Rothrock in the Greatest Fight Scene EVAR! – The Robot’s Pajamas

Breaking Bad: How ‘Granite State’ Revealed Who the Flash-Forward Ricin is Intended For – UnderScoopFire

Deep Inside Taco Bell’s Doritos Locos Taco – Fast Company

The Secret Behind Key and Peele’s Football-Player Names – Vulture

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Are Present, But Where’s Nick Fury? – Redheaded Mule

One is an aimless Fox show, while the other is an aimless Fox network. One is the TV version of The Avengers, while the other is the movie version of Jersey Shore. Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

Marvels-Agents-of-SHIELD-cast-shot

I may not have loved it but a LOT of people did, as it was the highest rated scripted show of the night.  It wasn’t perfect, but it was good television. I’m still not convinced it’s going to be a weekly destination for me, but I’m just one person. It set Twitter ablaze, with folks either discussing it or bitching about spoilers. This show is gonna be a hit, so I’d be a fool to think it didn’t have the West Week Ever.

20th Sep2013

West Week Ever – 9/20/13

by Will

oie_922142seDasWF9

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So, last Saturday, Lindsay and I did the Color in Motion 5K. It was the first 5K for both of us, and it went pretty well. Like other color runs, there are stations set up along the route where volunteers NAIL you with a corn starch colored powder. For a good chunk of the race, I was blind in my left eye from where the red volunteer just went crazy on the left side of my face. Seeing as how a 5K is roughly 3 miles, I can say that I ran the first mile without stopping. Then, I realized I’d lost Lindsay, so I looked for her and we walked the rest of the way. Once done, I gave myself a baby wipes bath in the parking lot, and then headed up to Retro Con.

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Retro Con, held outside of Philly, is a celebration of all things from the 80s and 90s. The vendors had everything from Transformers to Nintendo games. But I wasn’t there for the vendors. No, I was there for a mega Twitter meetup, as I’d finally get to meet a lot of my online friends for the first time. And it did not disappoint. Over the course of the day, I met @claymationhowl, @JohnDoctorKent, @FakeEyes22, @meistershake, @bmorin54, @doubledumbass, @P0LISHPHEN0M, @howardthedeck, @chapmanrunner, @monsterfink, and I reconnected with @lamarrevenger. Using the UnderScoopFire table as home base, we took turns taking tours of the place to see what we could find. Mostly we just found overpriced collectibles. I’d taken some Will’s World of Wonder stock to sell, but there weren’t many takers. In fact, it seemed like other dealers were doing most of the buying from each other. I had a rather tacky experience where I sold a Batman figure to a guy for $15. Later on, I found out he had a vendor table, and as I walked up, he tapped the figure, saying “Thanks for the hookup, man.” That’s when I noticed he had a $30 price tag on it. Needless to say, he ended up taking it home unsold. There were also retro cars like K.I.T.T., the General Lee, and the Back to the Future Delorean, but I ended up only seeing the DeLorean (I’d forgotten about the others until they had already left). Wanna see some pics?

I think I was this kid's first black experience. Even after I finished taking the pic, he continued to blast me until his mom made him stop.

I think I was this kid’s first black experience. Even after I finished taking the pic, he continued to blast me until his mom made him stop.

 

Flash Gordon and blerds!

Flash Gordon and blerds!

 

"I pity the fool who thinks I'm Chris Kirkpatrick!"

“I pity the fool who thinks I’m Chris Kirkpatrick from *NSYNC!”

Fighting evil by moonlight...

Fighting evil by moonlight…

 

It's my first Joe

It’s my first Joe!

 

Yeah, I collect Toy Fair catalogs, but there was no way I was paying $75 for this.

Yeah, I collect Toy Fair catalogs, but there was no way I was paying $75 for this.

This has become my most popular Instagram pic.

This has become my most popular Instagram pic.

 

In other news…

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Since all the cool kids were talking about it, I decided to go out and seek some of those limited edition monster cereals that are hitting Target. Since Count Chockula and Boo Berry are kinda pedestrian, I went for the deeper cuts of Yummy Mummy and Frute Brute. I’d never had them growing up, as I wasn’t allowed to have much sugary cereal. So, what did I think? As an adult fan of sugary cereals, I was disappointed. Yummy Mummy is described as “orange cream flavored”, but it misses something. You see, I expected it to be infused with a citrusy twang, but it’s really just “orange” in scent and surface. At the end of the day, it’s just another sweetened corn cereal, but it doesn’t really do as much for its fruit side as Froot Loops or Crunchberries do. I killed the box yesterday morning and proceeded to open the Frute Brute – which is the same exact cereal, only orange-cream is traded for cherry. According to my taste buds, Yummy Mummy won the matchup.

arsenio

Arsenio Watch, Week 2: I quit. I’m not the biggest fan of myself, but I love myself enough to not endure that torture anymore.

I tend to wake up late in the mornings, so I watch a lot of daytime TV, like Jerry Springer and Judge Mathis. Since those shows are geared towards the unemployed, all the commercials are either for payday loans or unaccredited for-profit colleges being pimped by Lil Romeo. One, however, caught my eye recently. It’s for Kaplan University’s School of Nursing, and it stars a cute girl who’s updating her social media profile on her first day of nursing. All her friends and family are getting the message and congratulating her as she goes about her day. Then they show one of the “patients”:

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WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?! KILL IT WITH FIRE!!! You probably can’t tell because this picture was taken with a tube TV, but this guy looks like one of those soulless CG characters from The Polar Express. Uncanny Valley!!!! Someone had to have complained because I haven’t seen this commercial in a week. I found it on YouTube, and that scene is mysteriously missing:

Who can help me solve this mystery?!

Links I Loved

Magneto Was Right – The Nerds of Color

Rubber-Suit Monsters Fade. Tiny Tokyos Relax. – The New York Times

The History of the Trapper Keeper – Mental Floss

That ep of the No Topic Required Podcast that I mentioned last week has been posted, and you can listen to it here.

I’m not even gonna play the usual games. Considering all the friends I got to meet, it’s no contest that Retro Con had the West Week Ever. Make sure you follow them all on Twitter!

Me and Howie Decker

Me and Howie

Me and Corey

Me and Corey

Me and Tank

Me and Tank

 

Howie, Tank, Brian, and Dean

Howie, Tank, Brian, and Dean

 

See you guys next year, if not sooner!

06th Sep2013

West Week Ever – 9/6/13

by Will

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Can I just say that I can’t stand “campers”? Let me explain: campers are the folks who just camp out in a store at the expense of other customers. You know the kids who read the manga on the floor of Barnes & Noble? They’re campers. This came to mind because series 11 of the LEGO Minifigures finally hit Target, but I couldn’t get to them. No, because some mom was too busy doing the squeeze method on the whole fucking box! For those not in the know, LEGO releases blind bags collectible versions of their LEGO minifigures. Since you don’t know what’s inside, the best way to figure it out is by squeezing. We all do it, but there’s got to be a limit. You can’t commandeer the whole cardboard display and squeeze EVERY pack while someone else is waiting. Be considerate!

Batwoman

Apparently fans are upset because the creators on Batwoman walked off due to conflicts with editorial. These reports are nothing new for DC, but it seems the creators wanted Batwoman to marry her girlfriend, Maggie Sawyer. At the end of the day, this is a company-owned character, and that plotline may not have aligned with DC’s future plans for the characters. This is a precarious situation because it makes DC look bad considering that Marvel had no problem with gay marriage when it came to Northstar. The question, however, is whether or not this is a “gay” thing. Typically, fans hate the idea of comic characters getting married, but this is the odd scenario where they’d upset about a wedding not happening. Folks online pointed out that fans tend to care more when it’s a high profile character, and she’s not big enough to fall into that category. Personally, I’ve never liked Batwoman. I didn’t stick with her series long, but it always bothered me that she never really earned her spot in the Bat Family. In the stories, especially her Detective arc, there’s no real reason given as to why she decides to be BATwoman. Why take on that baggage and responsibility? Why not just be the AssKicktress or something? Clearly, it was a corporate thing where they knew slapping a bat on her chest would legitimize her in some way. I think they tried to loop her into the Bat goings on during Batman Inc., but it was too little too late by that point. It was always a gorgeous book, but it was more style than substance. It moved at a glacial pace, and she wasn’t really a likeable character. So, do I want her to be happy? NO! But they can’t kill her, ’cause then that’ll be construed as gay bashing or something. This is what happens when you create a token without a plan.

arsenio

I’m really curious to see how Arsenio’s gonna do in late night. The landscape has changed since 1994, but there’s definitely a niche for him to fill. For one thing, he’s black. Sure, there’s W. Kamau Bell airing at the same time, but he caters to the uppity blipster crowd. Arsenio is just plain ol’ black. There’s also a hierarchy to late night: if you’re promoting a new movie you go on Letterman or Leno. Kimmel is starting to get in on that. Then, you’ve got Fallon and Ferguson for whoever’s left. Still, there’s something to the fact that Arsenio has mainly been cleared by stations that are also WB affiliates. That network’s “stars” need a showcase, as they’re not getting that Leno invitation. There’s a whole tier of Hollywood that can now benefit from a new, hip show. Look at Breaking Bad – Bryan Cranston has now hit the level to be in Leno or Letterman, but Betsy Brandt is still on that Talking Bad level. She’d be perfect for Arsenio, as she’s a strong player on a hit show. The thing is that Arsenio was *young* and hip, and 20 years have passed. Is he still trying to cater to a young audience, or is he trying to pick up where he left off with the audience that he had? Remember, he didn’t last too long once the late night wars started, and I really don’t see great things now. Anyone remember the Vibe show? Or Magic Johnson’s show? This is just that, in 2013. Since he’s syndicated, he’ll get his first year, but I’m not sure he’ll get more than that. It’ll be interesting to see what happens.

DrummondMcCurdy_opt

I love this story SO MUCH. If you don’t wanna click the link, here’s the long and short of it: Jennette McCurdy played Sam on iCarly, while Andre Drummond plays for the Detroit Pistons. I’ve always kinda had a thing for the Sam character, as I have an idea as to where her character arc leads her in life; you should ask me about it sometime.  Anyway, Andre tweeted that he had a crush on her and she ended up seeing it, which led to their introduction. Their online flirtation went back and forth, and now they’re a couple! Or so it seems. Anyway, just read the whole story ’cause it’s so much better than my summary.

Did you guys know that there are no Cracker Jack prizes anymore?! I learned this via someone I follow on Instagram. Apparently, when you open up the prize package, it tells you that you can now download your prize from the App Store. I looked into it, and found that you end up with this game:

cracker-jack-3001000-1-s-307x512

Lindsay pointed out that more people will probably play this app than would’ve played with the crappy version that would’ve been packed inside. Still, while she’s probably right, it feels like the end of an era.

Links I Loved

Toy Hunt: Ultra Mega Flea Market Hunt – The Robot’s Pajamas

Who Wore It Best? 80s Cartoon Character Edition -UnderScoopFire!

My Jehovah’s Witness story part 1 – Monster Cafe and Bar

My story as a Jehovah’s Witness part 2 – Monster Cafe and Bar

The Many Faces of Amanda Waller – The Nerds of Color

This Week’s Posts

Introducing…Track Star!

Thrift Justice – Walk On By

One’s returning to the dog pound, while the other’s being treated like a bitch. One’s waiting for a squeeze, while the other found one. Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

DruCurdy_opt

I’m a sucker for an internet love story. Plus, it’s too soon to judge Arsenio, while the other two things made me mad. So, Jennette McCurdy and Andre Drummond had the West Week Ever!

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