Real World Watcher: D.C. Finale

Unlike last week’s long post which didn’t go up until midnight, I’m going to break up the season finale and cast reunion special up into to posts. Overall, I can’t say I particularly enjoyed this season. I feel like my emotions were toyed with a bit too much by the editors. Were the dudes (minus Mike) really as bad as they seemed in the middle of the season (as I commented on almost completely throughout my posts) or were their worst moments put on screen to get me to dislike them only for the story editors to not-so-much redeem them, but make them more likable later on? I’m really not sure. They did some pretty bad stuff and Andrew still annoys the hell out of me, but they clearly lightened up on all that towards the end of the season so we could all leave on a happy note. And this was a pretty good episode, actually, maybe the best of the season because they actually did stuff like put on an art show, attend a gay pride parade when Mike and his dad actually talked to a protester and they played truth or dare. And of course, they said goodbye. These used to really get me when I was younger, but I’m either not as invested or have become less of a softy. I’m guessing it’s the investment thing because I think I got a little choked up during the goodbyes of the Brooklyn cast. Anyway, I didn’t necessarily live blog this episode, but I did jot down my thoughts, so here we go. Come back in an hour for a post about the reuinion special.

*It’s cool that they’re doing an art show. Andrew even made me laugh when he said Subway could cater. His slowness in painting is annoying.

*Ty’s a douche for saying photography is easy. At least he apologizes later. It’s cool that people are buying Callie’s pics.

*I’m kind of surprised they didn’t have Josh’s band play.

*Uh oh, drunk Mike is flirting/fake fighting with another dude. He’s bleeding!

*Mike’s dad convincing him to go back and talk to the protestor at the gay pride rally was actually really cool.

*I knew Andrew saying he was going to dump his girlfriend Andrea was bullshit. Her moving out there for him is a little crazy though.

*Hey, they’re playing truth or dare on camera! They said how often they plaid this on The Shit They Shoulda Shown last week.

*I feel bad for Emily because she doesn’t seem to have a home to return to. I wonder what she’ll do.

*I’m surprised that no one has decided to stay in DC. Usually there’s one or two.

*Josh is first to go. Then Callie. Then Andrew (who calls the roommates “very special people”). Then Ashley (Mike offers her his house for family). Then Ty. Then Mike and finally Emily. It must really suck to be the last person left in the house. I think I’d get all misty.

*Ty talks about needing to connect to himself which is cool. It’s good to hear him acknowledging he wants to change (nobody’s perfect).

*Emily’s list of things she’ll miss reminds me of leaving for college, leaving college and leaving Toledo.


*Click here, for my live blog of the reunion special.

Oh Sweet Christmas, The New Expendables Trailer is SUPERCRAZYAWESOME!!!

I’ve said I’m excited for The Expendables and I’ve said the first trailer is awesome, but holy crap, this trailer is better than anything I expected. I kind of wish they hadn’t included the Arnold Schwarzenneger (almost spelled it right on the first try this time)/Bruce Willis cameo as I’m guessing that’s the majority of their scenes. If you’re interested in more behind the scenes Expendables info, I highly recommend checking out Ethelmae’s blog if you aren’t already. That poster’s sick too! Oh how I wish Expendables would also get turned into a video game. Anyone read the comic? Is it any good? I might check out the trade if the art’s good and enough people dig it.

Spider-Man Dark Dimensions Looks Awesome

I saw this trailer for the upcoming video game Spider-Man: Dark Dimensions over on Topless Robot today and it’s got me pretty excited about the game. Going to the incredibly deep well of alternate Spider-Man universes is such a good idea, I’m surprised that no one has thought of it for another video game. You can see the basic Spidey and Spider-Man Noir in this trailer with two other dimensions mentioned. Rob said he’d heard it might be 2099 which seems pretty reasonable and likely, but what could the fourth be? I’m wondering if 1602 might be on the plate? Heck, maybe even Spider-Man Unlimited, anyone else remember that animated series that tried to Batman Beyond Spider-Man?

In addition to this being a superhero game, which I’m always interested in, the Spider-Man video game franchise has been a love/hate one for me for years. There was that bad X-Men/Spidey NES game, then Maximum Carnage for Sega which I loved. Jump ahead to the PS and PS2 with the first two Spider-Man movie games. The first one was great and the second is one of my all time favorite games (as I mentioned when I talked about Crackdown), but after that things went downhill. Ultimate Spider-Man seemed like it would be cool with it’s comic book art style, but it actually cut out a lot of what made Spider-Man 2 so fun and cool. From there I was out, but this one looks good, even if it does seem to ape Arkham Asylum a little too much.

Lost Thoughts: The Package

Okay, so I’m sick and not feeling all that well right now so maybe that clouded my thoughts on this week’s episode. I get that it’s an epic-builder (an episode needed to move the story along that might not be super interesting right now). Part of the reason is that I’ve found Sun pretty boring from the beginning. She’s just been following other people all over the jungle and it’s not very interesting. Yawn. I did like some things though.

Seeing the portable pylons set up was cool, as was Woodmore saying he knows who Non Locke is from myth and whatnot. I really wish they’d just say what the hell his name is. I know the writers (according to the official Lost podcast) just call him Locke in the script, but how much freaking longer are we going to have to wait?

The flashsideways was interesting enough. I was worried that knowing what Sayid did in Sundown, would cut the legs out from under this episode and it did to some extend, but the real interesting bits were that Sun’s dad wanted Jin dead. I guess that’s interesting. Kinda? I’m still not sure how or if I care about the flashsidewayses. I’m sure I will by the time the whole thing’s said and done, but that doesn’t make for good sequential storytelling.

Let’s see, what else? Oh, did Sayid–who now feels nothing, which is cool and Ben-like–swim around the entire Hydra island? Also, how did the people bringing Desmond out of the sub not see him. He was floating RIGHT THERE.

Seeing Desmond again was…okay? You knew he had to be back (his name was in the credits all season), but I kind of wanted him to be okay and not get sucked back in. I’m not exactly sure what purpose he’ll serve and, being sick, I don’t really care right now.

Here’s to the rest of the season being war-filled and crazy town!

TJ’s Toy Box: Mezco Tiny Terror Freddy Krueger

As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve got a 3 3/4-inch Jason Voorhees figure that’s part of Mezco’s Cinema Of Fear line. Even though I’m not generally a fan of the 3 3/4-inch scale of action figures (I loved G.I. Joes as a kid, but generally I prefer larger toys), I really dig this line. As of right now it only consists of three figures: Jason, Freddy Krueger and Leatherface. The Jason figure I have is actually an exclusive version Mezco gave out at New York Toy Fair a year or two back, the only difference as far as I know is that the mask on the NYTF exclusive is actually glow in the dark which is pretty creepy.

Anyway, as much as I dig Jason (he IS my second favorite slasher), this post is actually about the Freddy figure which Rickey gave me for Christmas or my birthday (I don’t mean to sound scatterbrained, but they’re only a few months apart).¬†What I really like about these little figures (and am starting to like about a lot of Hasbro’s 3 3/4-inch figures) is the high level of detail and articulation that comes in such a little package. Sure, the face of the figure could look more like Robert Englund, but I really like how the iconic hat, sweater and, of course, knife glove turned out (don’t be fooled by the comparison between the photos below, I think the Freddy photo was actually flipped because all the other pics I looked at have the glove on the right hand, like the figure does).

The articulation is sick too as you can kind of see in the below photo. Freddy can actually be contorted so much that it’s hard to keep him standing on his generic blood splattered black disk-stand he comes with. Freddy’s got neck, shoulder, elbow, wrist, waist, hip, knee and ankle joints, all of which come together to offer up some pretty awesome poses. Freddy and his ilk look great on a desk–though I realize that that might not be appropriate for many office spaces–or possible stalking a Christmas village OR hanging out in a shadow box. If they weren’t so creepy looking, I’d even recommend them for kids because there’s such playability here. I don’t think Mezco is still selling these badboys, but you can track them down online. You’ll have to ask Rickey how he got him!

Toy Commercial Tuesday: MEGO Planet Of The Apes

I missed MEGOs by a few years when I was a kid. I didn’t even know they existed until I picked up my first issue of ToyFare (which was also the first special, I believe). I’m not a big fan of them in general, though I love how they were and still are used in Twisted ToyFare Theatre every month in the mag. I do, however, love the Planet Of The Apes movies, however and was super jazzed last year (or was it two years back now?) when Diamond Select Toys and EMCE teamed up to re-release the POTA MEGOs. Unfortunately, I only got the first two and haven’t acquired the second pair yet, but this commercial with its crazy, underwater-sounding narrator makes me want to pick them up.

Crossovers I Want To See: Jason Vs. Wolverine

I’ve only done one of these before, but have been meaning to do more. Frankly, this is the kind of stuff geek dreams are made of right? And even when the long awaited crossovers do happen they’re either lopsided towards one franchise (Freddy vs. Jason) or depending on fan votes for fight results (DC Vs. Marvel) or just not good at all (Alien Vs. Predator). I’ve been pitting slashers against superheroes in my head for a surprisingly short period of time considering how long I’ve been a fan of both (just the last year or two, really). The idea of pitting two seemingly indestructable killing machines against each other actually came from a figure pairing on my desk when I still worked at the old ToyFare offices. Here you have a 3 3/4-inch Hasbro Wolverine in Jacket from the Wolverine: Origins line and a 3 3/4-inch Jason Voorhees from Mezco’s Cinema Of Fear series facing off on my kitchen tables. On my desk, they went from fighting to riding the bulldog that came with the DCUC Lobo SDCC figure from a few years back. In my imagined crossover, though, they would spend the entire comic or movie just slashing the shit out of each other getting angrier and angrier the entire time. Here’s how I see it going down. Wolverine’s on one of his many cross country trips when he finds himself in Crystal Lake. After a day or so of fishing and hunting, Jason shows up to politely ask Wolverine to leave. The pair throw down, but Wolverine doesn’t know what he’s dealing with, so he assumes Jason dies at the end of the battle and heads back to New York. Of course, it’s not nearly that simple, as Jason heals and goes on a trip to New York to exact his revenge using those crazy tracking skills he used to hunt down and kill the Final Girl from the first Friday The 13th in the first sequel (continuity!). Bam, huge fight in NYC between two crazy men with healing abilities. If it’s a comic book, it would only make sense for the rest of the NYC local heroes to get involved and help put a stop to Jason (shouldn’t be a problem for the Avengers–especially if Thor’s around, how friggin’ cool of a few panels would that be? Mallet for machete!–or Fantastic Four). But, if it’s a movie (a boy can dream), they’d continue their fight until the X-Men finally show up to help and probably drop Jason in some freshly poured concrete. Marvel and WildStorm, feel free to contact me. I can easily flesh this story out or come up with a brand spanking new one.

Pop Candy Totally Loves Me

Well, not really, but Whitney Matheson of USA Today’s Pop Candy does love my most recent list over on Topless Robot called The Top 20 Nods, Cameos and Easter Egg’s In Alan Moore’s Top 10 Comics.

It’s the 8th from the bottom! The comments are even pretty nice, at least when I checked them last week.


Three Reasons I Wish I Had Boomerang

Thanks to some old wiring in our building, we can’t have digital cable. At first we were pretty bummed because we couldn’t have DVR or a million channels, but we got used to it once we found out it’d only run us $15 a month (not including internet, that took even longer to set up). For the most part, it doesn’t bother me. Then I have days like today where I babysit and get to see the wonders of Boomerang, the old school Cartoon Network spin-off that basically just plays old Hanna-Barbera and original CN shows. After we watched some inane and awful current children’s programming on Disney Channel, I seamlessly switched over to show the baby stuff like Snorks, Smurfs, Hong Kong Phooey and the following.

Big babies, super basketball players and robotic comedians, what else could you want?

Quick Movie Review: Angels & Demons (2009)

Here’s my brief history with Dan Brown’s books and the movies based on them. I read DaVinci Code back when it was a big deal after the missus (who wasn’t the missus back then) read it and passed it to me. I liked it. It’s a great, page turning adventure book. Then, of course, they made a movie, casting Tom Hanks which didn’t fit with my mental image of him. I didn’t see that movie, nor have I read its prequel Angels and Demons or its sequel The Lost Symbol (the missus as read them all). She mentioned she wanted to watch A&D, it popped up on Instant Watch and we weren’t doing anything so we checked it out. It’s pretty good.

A&D has a few things going for it that I liked. First off, the Large Hadron Collider plays prominently in the beginning story. It seemed to match up with what I had read about it, but I’m no expert. At least it looked cool. The movie also has Hanks who I kind of forgot I liked this much. Of course, it’s also got a ton of Catholic Church history, which I’m interested in as a lapsed Catholic who went through Catholic grade and high school, then studied the Church’s history in a few classics and history classes in college. It was fun hearing Hanks’s Robert Langdon talk about things I had studied to some extent. The story involves the Church calling Langdon in to help them find the four leading candidates for the next Pope and some antimatter from the Collider. The idea is that each candidate will be killed in an Illuminati-related secret place every hour until midnight when the antimatter case’s batter will expire and everything goes kablammo. Of course, it’s not that simple.

I did have a few problems though. First off, and this isn’t the movie’s fault, it wasn’t as fun as either National Treasure movie, which I love. Obviously, they’re different movies with A&D being a lot more serious and full of death, and I get that the NT movies came out to capitalize on the popularity of DaVinci Code, but I couldn’t help shaking the thought that I’d rather see Hanks in a National Treasure movie, being the cool fun guy, than being Langdon, who seems like a cool fun guy whose stuck in some pretty serious business. The other problem with the movie is that it’s a bit too long, which not only gave me time to get bored with the movie (how many times do they need to be sitting around not doing anything between murders?) AND start thinking about it too much. I’m not saying I don’t want movies to make me think, but with all the breathing room A&D gave me–and the knowledge that there was still a lot of time as they started racing towards the deadline–I knew something was up and figured it out pretty quickly. In fact, I not only figure out who the real bad guy was, but had the whole ugly affair sorted out with about 20 minutes left. Now, I like the feeling of knowing what’s going on before the characters do, but it shouldn’t take them so much longer to figure it out than me. It should be a few minutes thing. Otherwise you start wondering what the hell these people are in charge for anyway. Hell, if I’m just a freelance pop culture writer and I nailed it while the experts can’t, I’m bored and don’t care to watch anymore.

The missus said it seemed pretty close to the book, so I’ll probably steer clear for a while, though I am interested to read it. I’m looking for a book that really keeps me interested. I’m reading Terry Pratchet’s Soul Music right now which is really good, but for some reason, it’s not absorbing me. Anyway, watching this made me want to check out DaVinci Code again (the book). After she liked it to much I got the missus a version with images of the paintings and statues, which really helps because you’re not running to the computer every few pages. Anyone know if there are versions of Lost Symbol and A&D like that?