May 042016

What kind of geek would I be if I didn’t mention Star Wars today? Well, I’d probably not be considered that cool of one.
I remember standing in the rain way back in the day to see the premier of New Hope. I remember standing in lines to see it again. I remember the thrill when the Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi came out. I remember the thrill of the announcement of the prequels, quickly followed by the disappointment. Now, it’s a new age for the Star Wars universe. The Mouse has taken the reigns. Good movies are being made. Force Awakens was pretty good (but not without some faults) and Rogue One looks awesome. But I can’t help but feel a little down.
Part of the post movie joy back in the old days was hunting down whatever merchandise, T-shirts, toys, comics, books, or magazines that came out. It was a hero’s quest and just as much about the journey as it was about finally finding that Holy Grail. Now, you can’t swing a stick without seeing some bit merch.
Now, I’m not saying the good old Uncle George wasn’t out to make a buck and pushed movie merchandising to a whole new level. But just the amount of stuff that’s filling every freaking store is staggering. It kind of takes the joy out of being a fan. But then again, in a Jedi philosophy sort of way being a fan isn’t about how merch you’ve got but how much you enjoy the universe. So maybe that’s one of the signs of true fandom. It’s not about how much money you spend, it’s about your particular bit of geekery makes you feel.
So be happy. Have fun.

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 Posted by at 9:57 am
Jan 062016

Well The Shannara Chronicles premiered last night on MTV. Yeah, MTV. If you’d have asked me what channel a fantasy show would be on my answer would have never been MTV.
It was years ago when I read the books and I have to admit that I don’t remember a darned thing about them. Which is kind of odd since there’s plenty of other books that I remember fondly. Maybe the stories didn’t do anything for me. The only thing that really stuck with me were the awesome Hildebrandt covers.
But on the good side that means I can go into the TV series without saying “But in the book…” So what did I take from the show? The special effects were good for TV. The shots of the landscape were pretty damned cool. John Rhys-Davies not only has played a bad ass dwarf but now adds elf king to his resume. And Allanon is a kick ass dude.
Since it’s MTV, they made painfully obvious that they’re shooting for the young adult audience. OK, I can live with that. The dialog and acting are what one expect with a made-for-MTV series. Now, there is one thing that just shook my head on. I did quick search on the net and couldn’t find a still from the show but take notice. ELVES WITH MAN BUNS. No. Nuff said.
Over all. It’s not bad. It’s not great either. I’d put it in the “meh” category. But like when any popular fiction series makes to the small or big screen without totally sucking, it gives hope that somewhere out there is a creative team that’s going to take some of the other tales and transition them. It gives me hope for a Lankhmar or Elric treatment. Maybe a great reboot of Conan or that long awaited Red Sonja movie. We shall see.

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 Posted by at 10:25 am
Sep 222015

I was painfully reminiscing last night about the old days and really feeling my age. I’m talking about those by times when being a geek wasn’t cool or even near mainstream. There wasn’t an internet or heck even cable. Things were tough back then.
IF you were lucky to have a comic shop in your town good for you. The rest of us had to buy whatever comics we could at the grocery store.
Remember I said no cable. We got introduced to Dr. Who, Monty Python, and Blake’s 7 via PBS. Any other geeky shows that came out were at the mercy of the big three (Yes, there were only three.) networks. We’d rush home after school for a chance to see the stuff that was syndicated like the original Star Trek or Space: 1999. Some of the best shows were on Saturday morning. Really, that used to be the time.
The hottest video game console was an Atari 2600. Just look at those awesome graphics.
There was no Internet but we still had computers. I mean they were power houses like the VIC-20, TRS-80, TI-99 or even the mighty Sinclair ZX81. IF you wanted a game you could buy a magazine and type in yourself. It was in BASIC, of course.
This was also the time that Dungeons & Dragons came into being. There were no game stores. If you were lucky again there might have been a hobby shop that ended carrying it as a lark. And don’t even think about having easy access to those funny dice.
That’s what it was like. You had to search out your geek swag how ever you could. No Amazon to shop at. There wasn’t any social media to meet up like minded individuals. You just had be lucky where you happened to live. In a way, it’s a miracle that we kept going. It wasn’t great back then. It wasn’t easy. It had it’s own ways of being better and worse. It was what it was.

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 Posted by at 10:35 am
Jul 132015

I don’t know maybe it’s a good thing the DC isn’t throwing everything into one cinematic universe. But both the big DC one’s leave me in the “meh” category. They might be good. I don’t but based on the trailers. It’s a wait for ’em to come out on DVD or cable. Just watch for yourself and make your own judgement.
Here’s the Suicide Squad Trailer.

And here’s Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice

But there is one trailer that hasn’t been officially released yet that rocks. So you’ll just have to dig around the net and find it. That’s the Deadpool red band trailer. Find it. You will laugh. Now that one looks like it’s gonna rock. Looks like Marvel is gonna lead on the big screen in 2016. That’s my prediction.

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 Posted by at 6:11 pm
Aug 112014

I have to say that this is about the best movie that Marvel has put out. I mean really I can’t remember when I left a movie feeling so stoked. I haven’t felt like this since the first time I saw Star Wars. Shit, I can’t think of the last time I went and saw a movie and then the next watched the trailers for it. Maybe it’s because I’ve had all sorts of space opera stuff bouncing around inside my head but I doubt. I doubt Guardians of the Galaxy is going to have as much cultural impact as Star Wars but I really think it fills a void that missing.
See? There have been plenty of reviews out there. Listen to them. It’s a fun, action filled adventure in space.
So on my good old scale of movies: This ranks as Go Watch It Then Buy The DVD When It Comes Out.

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 Posted by at 2:31 pm
May 272014

OK, I may be dating myself here but when I was in formative high school years, there really wasn’t such a thing as YA (Young Adult) fiction.
Oh sure, there was stuff that was supposed to be for the tweens and teens but it just seemed more like children’s stuff. You know Hardy Boys and things like that. There wasn’t any Hunger Games or Twilight. It was kids’ stuff or grown up stuff. Nothing in between.
I did a lot of reading during that time and gobbled up things that were supposed to be “adult” (No not like that). Obviously, I read the classics and movers and shakers of the time in science fiction and fantasy. Some of my favorites were Robert Asprin, Asimov, Heinlein and Harry Harrison. Plus many, many more. But I also snatched up any thing else I thought might be cool like Stephen King, Ian Fleming, and classics from other genres. So may be that’s why I’m a little warped.
But then it was also sort of my first steps into adulthood. Stories that got me thinking of things besides school and the usual teen drama. Just a quick random thought to start off a short week.

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 Posted by at 10:03 am