ALIEN: Covenant – The Crossing: Coda Blue


 

Well, well, well. This is very interesting indeed. For one, it’s excellently shot and edited, albeit about a minute too short for my tastes. “Too short?” you’re thinking? “It’s supposed to be a SHORT!” you say. Well, okay, it goes like this: although it’s the perfect bridge between Prometheus and the upcoming ALIEN: Covenant, it feels as if it’s absolutely popping up on the AC Blu-Ray as a bonus. But curious me wants to know if MORE was shot because I have questions.

What would be cool is if future disc, streamed and cable versions of Prometheus add this onto the ending as a post-credit sequence just to give that film a bit more oomph. It certainly needed a kicker that was better than the ending it got in the theatrical cut. That said, I wonder if this gets shown in the theater before the big-deal feature? That would work as well for those new viewers who haven’t seen the previous film and want a brief wrap-up appetizer befre the main course.

Anyway, I can predict the future! Well, sort of. As in I know that HBO very likely has dibs on the first-run cable rights to this one. Easy-peasy reasony squeezy is this not at all shocking video:


 

So, I guess that’s going to end up on a disc as well (mark my words, I guess). Hmmm, okay… back to work. I’m a bit behind in stuff thanks to more stuff and wanted to watch the original ALIEN at some point today. But that’s not going to happen, so I did the next best thing and dug out my ancient Kenner ALIEN Movie Viewer for a quick fix.


 

Yep, it still works fine, noisy cranking reel action and all. The film strip in the cassette is a bit scratchy, but this kid’s edit still packs a punch. I still can’t fathom that Kenner toy line, though. A film you’d never take a child to gets merch no one probably bought for the kids they were marketed to. Still wish I bough more than one of those hideously stiff but super-detailed ALIEN figures, though. Mine and its box got mangled by my younger brother when I wasn’t around for a few years, grrrr!

Back in a bit.

-GW

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4D Cityscape Makes For A (Not So) Puzzling Last Minute Gift Idea


 

Need a super cool last minute gift and you just so happen to be within fast traveling distance of any of these retailers? Well, here you go. 4D Cityscape’s wonderfully awesome and complex takes on some pop culture faves. I personally haven’t put a puzzle together in too many years, but these all stand out as more than welcome chances to get by brain firing up in spots where it’s been snoozing too much. Someone get these guys a few more licenses, as I bet Star Wars fans would love to see some iconic locations represented in 4D puzzle form.

4d-cityscape-batman-gotham-city
 

4d-cityscape-game-of-thrones-essos
 

4d-cityscape-hobbit-middle-earth
 

4d-cityscape-lord-of-the-rings
 

-GW

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Call of the Westeros Meets Classic Response Time

So, this season of Game of Thrones ended with a bang. Well, a few bangs if you count the graceful exit one key character made via a nearby window. The internet being what it is, one still frame ended up as a hilarious image gamers who know Ubisoft’s hugely popular Assassin’s Creed series got a laugh over:

ACWesteros

It took me all of thirty seconds for my brain to cook up goofball responses to that scene using classic film posters, but a little longer to swipe images I’ll link to to be fair to the folks who posted them first. Traffic is cool on one’s blog when it’s least expected, I always say. Okay, here we go (click on the posters to go to their respective sites):

Hit the Hay

I’ve never seen this flick before, but I’m now Judy Canova curious. I know I’ve seen HER before in something, but I’ve not a clue as to what.

It Ain't Hay

Ooh, a new site to check out! Nice place you’ve got there, Steve! Haven’t seen this one in decades, but it’s probably as funny as I recall.

crash-dive

A not too shabby WWII war drama/romance flick with a fine cast doing their thing for the cause. Oscar-winning special effects here, but don’t go into this looking for CG perfection.


 


 

Finally, yeah… I may as well get Fox some love as well for the upcoming Assassin’s Creed movie. As with any game-based film, my eyebrow is up a lot on whether it can capture the game’s more interactive elements clearly. But I absolutely LOVE being proven wrong by movies based on videogame source material. Which means I’m still skeptical even with the casting choices made. We’ll get into that later. Just go enjoy the rest of this weekend for now.

Game of Thrones S6 Red Band Trailer: April Is Once Again, The Cruelest Month


 

Well, here we are once again. This time, down a steep, steep hill with no brakes and the showrunners going wild thanks to Uncle George’s burnout on getting that new book completed. This season is going to be REALLY interesting on many fronts and will hopefully jar Uncle out of his block of ice and in front of a keyboard of some sort to get back to the grind. Still, from the slightly NSFW trailer above you can see that this season going to be a doozy of death for many (and probably some longtime favorites). “I Choose Violence” will more than likely be hash-tagged, T-shirted and pinback buttoned to death before the season begins (and after – just you wait), so don’t be surprised to see it everywhere, even spelled out by kids in alphabet soup letters or even Alpha-Bit letters.

Wait, does Post even make that cereal anymore? Hmm, hmm, hmmmmm…(typety-type-type): Why YES they do! Hmmm. Parents, keep an eyeball on what your kids are watching if you’re into buying stuff they can spell with. Or not. Hey, I encourage creativity among all as long as no one gets hurt.

The Frog And Pig Split For Ratings. Color Me Not Amused One Bit

Pig and FrogI really shouldn’t care a whit about this, but it’s bugged me that the media has fallen over themselves to make the Kermit-Piggy “divorce” a story as if it’s a real thing. Yuck. Who’s the main sponsor of this show anyway, Ashley Madison? Anyway, why the hell does something as crappy as divorce need to be introduced into a family-friendly set of characters as the Muppets?

Yeah, yeah, Sesame Street has done the reality thing as a means to explain some real world situations such as death and prison to its young audience. But in the case of this upcoming ABC show, it smacks of nonsense that’s only there to add a whiff of modern-day “reality” show nonsense to what should have been more of a throwback to the original variety show. Ugh.

On the other hand, I guess I should have seen it coming as both Kermie and Piggy have had someone else’s hand up their butts for decades.

Speaking of Sesame Street, the HBO deal? Great for subscribers to HBO but terrible for anyone not getting more than basic cable. Between that (so long, low income viewers!) and the shows possibly being chopped to half an hour thanks to modern short attention spans, you have to wonder what was being thought about other than money when all is said and done. Of course, that money thing seems to be partially thanks to online streaming wrecking certain home video revenue streams for good. But I guess thinking of (all) the children doesn’t pay the bills unless you deal with the devil in one way or another. Ah well.

I won’t be watching the new Muppet show anyway (the concept is s total turn-off to me) and I haven’t watched Sesame Street in years. Well, okay… I lied. Out f curiosity I did recently check out the close to 30 parodies they’ve made over the last few seasons and all are hilarious. Although, I do question the idea of making parodies of mature shows that aren’t for kids at all (Boardwalk Empire, Mad Men, Game of Thrones) because the parodies work TOO damn well.

I guess I should be glad there’s no SS parody of The Wire… yet.

Game of Thrones S5 E1: A Hot Time In The Old Towns Tonight

Well, that was interesting. A low body count, some expected demises based on events from last season and one unexpected one (basically a “red shirt” death) that sets up some interesting dynamics for the rather hard-headed Mother of Dragons. Not letting the people go have their barbaric culture bread and circuses because of your own personal views is never a good thing at the end of the day. But hey, when you’ve got big, bad (and somewhat uncontrollable) dragons under your stairway (just like The Munsters!), it’s good to be the Queen, right? Meanwhile, back at the Lannister ranch, things are sliding downhill in all sorts of convincingly mad manners, aren’t they? Cersi’s going to be plotting, Margaery is going to be losing her marbles because of that plotting and you know it’ll be a battle of actresses chewing scenery to great effect.

On another part of the map, let’s not even bring up the Imp, as he’s in a bind he thinks he can booze his way out of and his bad haircut and beard make him look like a wino clown. Finally, as I stopped reading the books when the show came out but know some stuff from a few friends, expect a little less Snow by the end of the season. Maybe. It seems he’s wearing out his welcome among the Crows on a few fronts and that’s a bad sign of things to come. That’s not a spoiler if you use the internet, by the way.

Then again, given that Uncle George is probably grinning madly atop his comfy throne made from lots of printed green bills as he watches some fans spin madly off their couches, it’s all good wherever in Westeros he’s typing away from. Or not typing. No one tells Uncle George what to do, you know. Yeah, you’ll all be back next week. Well, not HERE, but in front of your TV’s, that is…

Factory Entertainment Makes A Crown Fit For A (Temporary) King

GoT Royal Crown 

‘Twas Shakespeare who wrote “Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,” (Henry IV, Part 2 Act 3, scene 1, line 31), but I’m betting Factory Entertainment is laying odds that more stability will be found from Game of Thrones fans with bulging wallets. In addition to its line of licensed plush Dire Wolves, Dragons, throw pillows and other collectibles from the show, that great looking replica Royal Crown of the Houses Baratheon and Lannister above is in search of a few good homes.

GoT ROyal Crown 2 

Limited to 1500 pieces, Joffrey’s crown is cast from metal (unlike the one on the show, which was made from lightweight material that looked like metal but wasn’t), weighs about 13 ounces and comes with a sturdy 3-pound pedestal. Nope, I wasn’t even about to attempt to put that crown on my big head at Toy Fair, folks. Not because I didn’t want to, mind you. It’s just that I’ve seen the show and read some of the books and know wearing that crown is a really bad idea. Of course, I suggested to the guys at Factory to run some sort of photo contest among the lucky future owners of this collectible to see who was the most hard-core GoT fan out there. But we agreed that unless there was some sort of disclaimer that said something along the lines of “Please don’t ACTUALLY bump off the person in the photo!”, there could be trouble. You know how some fans get – always striving for accuracy in their recreations.

Anyway, that crown goes on sale this spring. Keep an eye peeled for it… or someone may peel that eye for you.

The Wire Returns, Sharp As Ever (But Sharper In HD. Maybe)…

(thanks, aegies!) 

I caught this news on a friend’s facebook post late last night and did a little hoot and short fist pump. While the official air dates have yet to be set by HBO, the company is finally rebroadcasting the entire groundbreaking series in high definition. What remains to be seen (pun intended, by the way) is HOW the episodes will look on that now standard format if they weren’t originally shot in that format. 4:3 was the standard back when the show originally aired back in 2001, although 16:9 HD televisions were creeping into the marketplace and very common by the time the show’s final episode aired seven years later. That said, poking around on a few message boards shows that either the show was shot in the wide format and cropped for the common man, the show was ONLY shot in 4:3 and we’re going to see less of what we should (boo) or we’re all just nuts and have fallen for a grand hoax. Damn you, internet! Anyway, if this does happen, GOOD. I can go and recommend this excellent series to a few friends who missed out on it and haven’t committed to buying that big DVD box set. If it doesn’t happen, hell, I’ll just hope HBO reruns the entire series on their On Demand channel like they did when I caught the series over the course of a few months thanks to them being smart enough to run a season a month.

As always, we shall see…

The Lady Vanishes: Miz Bacall Takes Her Final Curtain…

A few years back, I once had to “explain” who Lauren Bacall was to a friend thanks to (of all things) a rather hilarious episode of The Sopranos where she was unceremoniously mugged by one of the main characters after an awards show:

When I said “explain” above, I didn’t do much in the way of talking at all other than to point him in the direction of Howard Hawks’ brilliant To Have and Have Not so he could see one tiny reason why she was so important. I’d say she got a lot more respect after that. And a whistle, most likely. This is turning into a kind of rotten week for falling stars, isn’t it? Still, while I’m not a believer in the afterlife, I’d bet that right about now, Bogie is sitting on a bar stool about to have a round when the doors swing open, a certain someone walks in with a cool breeze blowing behind her and without turning around, he lifts up his left hand which has two unlit cigarettes in it and says “What kept you, doll? I was getting bored here”, to which he’ll hear a smoky, purred “You were getting lonely here, you mean…”, as the lady takes both smokes and lights them then passes one back to him as he’s turning around.

They kiss (of course), THE END

Fade out. Roll credits…

Game of Thrones 4:10 – Endgame For Some, More Game For The Rest…

 
Okay, I waited the required amount of days of mourning for those who bought the farm on the final episode of Season 4, so here’s a wrap up of sorts. Well, not having read the books other than bits and pieces of two of them, I’ll say I was nicely surprised at how things ended this season. I knew Tyrian wasn’t going anywhere (yet), so his rescue and revenge bits were lovely to see. Now you know why bathroom doors have LOCKS these days, people.

 
As for the battle of the century THIS episode (or Brienne of Tarr versus The Hound), it was certainly fierce and bloody, but I figured it wouldn’t be a head-popping as that last big one on one fight on the show. I guess that’s the end of one of these characters, but as we don’t see an actual death, I wouldn’t be surprised if that old dog pops up in a future season. Of course, that bit has been done already, so perhaps he’s gone for good. Oh well. There are plenty of other mean men (and ladies) left on the show to get ticked off at…

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