Working The Force Hard (For Better or Worse)

star_wars_episode_vii__the_force_awakens_ver3_xlgOkay, I can get behind a few product tie-ins for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but others are both annoying and baffling once you take off the fan blinders. The obvious ton-plus of licensed toys based directly on the film and that Sphero BB-8 app-enabled robot that have been flying off store shelves? Yeah, those are givens any fan should run someone over with a landspeeder to get. I’ll even give it up for the assorted Star Wars food products from cereal to fruit snacks and beverages to the somewhat expensive Ample Hills Ice Cream I’ve yet to try because I can’t justify paying $36 for four pints and waiting almost a month to pick up or have delivered due to high demand.

Yeah, yeah. I’m not some major news network or big site, so I know I won’t get a shipment of free ice cream to try out like a bunch of local outlets have, so I’ll have to use my imagination (and the Force!) to get an idea of how well all those ingredients come together. Wait, what was I talking about? Ice cream thoughts lead way down the rabbit hole of distraction… oh, right. Continue reading

Star Wars Episode VII Seems Even Cooler in Japan

Let’s see now… This:

Versus this:

Both are great trailers, but I give the edge to the Japanese edit for its slightly more spoiler-iffic moments. Um, that is all (for now) as I prefer to wait until the movie is actually out before judging anything else.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Trailer 2: TBT Meet TMI, All In Two Minutes Flat


 

Well, the film certainly looks incredible (in that practical FX meets CG manner expected of it), but man did that old Ford get OLD. Well, I’m not getting any younger myself, but yikes. Scary stuff there. All kidding aside, it also looks as if the film won’t skimp on the humorous elements at all, so that’s a good thing. Nothing’s worse that a sci-fi/fantasy flick that tries too hard to take itself seriously (no names here, but some will know of which I speak). I’m betting we see more as the week spools out, what with Star Wars Celebration in full swing and all. Eh, perhaps I’ll save up one day and go to one of those, but that’s only going to REALLy happen if I’m IN a Star Wars flick at this point. Hey, I’d play Darth Faux Hipster Goatee any day of the week!

Ant-Man Trailer: Little Things Mean A Lot (Of Money At The Box Office)


 

Okay, Marvel. You got me again. I wasn’t planning to see Ant-Man until if fell out of the sky and landed on cable, but giving away that train scene made me chuckle enough to be interested in seeing this on a bigger screen. Granted, if this were a more “perfect” world, we’d see a Micronauts/Microman reference in the film that possibly hinted at a sequel or follow-up. But that would be so obscure a reference for younger fans that it would fly over their heads and not even register even as old farts like me burst out laughing when it appeared on screen. Ah well. Let the summer movie season commence, I suppose. I’ll just keep my little big ideas all to myself.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Teaser: Turning the Internet Into Hype-Our-Space…

Star Wars The Force Awakens TC 

Well, color me interested, but not quite yet convinced. This teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakened is too short, but it looks as if the effects teams have been hard at work with over a year to go. Or at least they’ve just done up scenes for this trailer that show they’re on the case and not planning to blow it:

(Thanks, Star Wars UK!) 

I have no questions as of yet other than wondering who’s flying the Millennium Falcon in that short clip and why that yet to be revealed dark Jedi has the second most impractical lightsaber I’ve ever seen. But I can wait for that reveal in some other trailer. I’m gathering this one movie will have the most teasers and trailers released for it of anything coming in 2015 just because Disney wants to show that the Star Wars license is in good hands. I didn’t think so when I heard the news and soon enough, saw Mickey ears on a Darth Vader helmet (wtf?) and I think Goofy dressed up as Darth as a plush doll (yikes!). But I’ll pay less attention to the licensing on this film because there will be THOUSANDS of new products coming to rake in the dough from the rubes and all I want to see is a decent new film in this series.

December 2015 will be here sooner than you think, given the way time has flown this year. I may be too ancient to fall for marketing and merchandising tactics, but I’ll see this if it’s as entertaining as the original was. I’m also holding out for the trailer where J.J. has people jumping off something high, as next to lens flare overuse it’s a trademark in all his films for some oddball reason. As usual, we shall see, right?

Marvel Studios Pretty Much Has You Covered on the Superhero Flick Front…


 
Yeah, it’s like that now. Rather than cover that crazy and reveal-packed press conference from yesterday, I’ll just drop dates and let you go get started on the line waiting, day-planning and other activities so you work AROUND these release dates which seem to be set in some sort of mystical stone. Yeah, it’s going to be a really busy five years for all those actors, writers, directors and even busier pre- and post-production teams:

Avengers: Age of Ultron – May 1, 2015

Ant-Man – July 17, 2015

Captain America: Civil War – May 6, 2016

Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – May 5, 2017

Thor: Ragnarok – July 28, 2017

Black Panther – November 3, 2017

Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018

Captain Marvel – July 6, 2018

Inhumans – November 2, 2018

Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019


 
I’m not usually one to zip out to a theater on opening week, as I hate those crowds and their unpredictable antics, sticky seats and the usual screaming child who doesn’t belong there that makes any movie stink. That said, I do like that there’s a plan for all these films to tie in together somehow and be one big arc that takes these characters somewhere. Even if it’s to places I don’t normally venture. Yeah, they’re all still comic book movies, but they’re getting more watchable as time goes on and not less to some extent. I don’t even want to know what that eventual box set of whatever will look like. Then again, I’d say there’s going to be a division in how people get films by then, but no matter what, a segment of those fans WILL want something physical to hold in their hot little hands and pop into a player of some sort…

Funko Wants To Pop! Your Wallet With Too Much Cool…

Pop Female Pop MaleFunko continues to expand its Pop! line with more new figures from your favorite films, TV shows and other pop culture trends, meaning you’ll be expanding that shelf or cabinet space to make room for MORE cool vinyls. May (this month!) brings Custom D.I.Y. Male and Female figures that allow you to create your own “limited edition” figures using whatever means necessary. These blanks can be painted, sculpted, chopped in pieces and put back together (eek!) or whatever you can think of. Well, as long as you’re pleased with the results.

June brings in a couple of doses of Disney, old-ish and new. Old-ish would be the four Pop figures from Beauty and the Beast, Belle, Cosgsworth, Lumiere, and Mrs. Potts (with Chip!):

Belle Pop Cogsworth Pop

Lumiere Pop Mrs Potts Pop

June also brings in A fresh set of Star Wars Pop figures (I still can’t quite grasp Disney owning that license!) that include characters from Episode IV: A New Hope, Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, and Episode VI: Return of the Jedi including a super-sized 6″ Wampa, Luke Skywalker in his Hoth outfit, Bossk, The Emperor, Hammerhead, and a Stormtrooper Biker Scout. can you say TOO cute? Sure, you can!

Wampa Pop Luke Hoth Pop Bossk Pop Emperor Pop Hammerhead Pop Biker Scout Pop

Yeah, yeah – the Star Wars stuff isn’t out ’til NEXT month, so it’s missing those “May the Fourth Be With You” celebrations this time. Funko is just showing them off now to get you all hyped up for when they’re officially released. Now that your wallet is drained, I guess I should inform you that there’s MORE on the way. So keep building those shelves and display cases and Funko will make sure you’ll always have something to put on them…

BUY IT! Funko Gets New & Nostalgic With Even More TV & Movie Favorites

funko logoI’ve always liked Funko’s cute collectible figures, but my over-dedication to the games library here means I’ve no room to stock those cool-looking figures (boo!). Still, that won’t stop me from letting you know what’s new and upcoming from the company…

Rocketeer
May brings in The Rocketeer, the late Dave Stevens’ great comic character that also ended up in a decent and fun to watch film directed by Joe Johnston and produced by Disney back in 1991. Arriving as part of Funko’s ReAction lineup, The Rocketeer comes equipped with a removable helmet and jetpack, which doesn’t actually work by the way (so you won’t have Nazi spies trying to break into your place and steal it)…

Continue reading

Hey, Spider-Man 2? Even Electro Doesn’t Spark My Interest…

Uh… nope. I’m not feeling this new Spider-Man movie at all for a few reasons. The reboot was kind of lame and forced with way too many CG effects (par for the course for this franchise) and worse, separating it from the rest of the Marvel movie lineup has always been a terrible idea because as come comic fans know Spidey WAS an active Avenger for a brief time. Anyway, this new film has too many villains, too many connected bits (I think the Oscorp-created heroes is a terrible idea) and nope, I don’t like the casting here at all. That said, this one will rake in the dough as it were because the fans don’t seem to care thanks to them just wanting more of the same but bigger and louder.

That said, I’d really rather see a filmed version of that now dead Broadway musical Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark just because of all that behind the scenes turmoil that went into the live show and all its changes during and after its initial previews and premiere. I hope someone was smart enough to shoot that, as even as a flawed work, there’s something about a live show (or a filmed version of one) that’s a good deal more interesting and impressive than a film with a room full of computers powering the better parts of the action scenes…

Comcast Buys Time Warner Cable: Here’s All You Need To Know As a Consumer…

 
Words fail me on this EXTREMELY crappy 45 billion dollar “deal” for any current consumer of pay TV out there who uses either service, so I’ll let assorted clips from The Empire Strikes Back do the talking (Thanks to ABiggerQuote for the clips!):

And so forth and so on. If you REALLY want to know how I feel, Robot Chicken spells it out even more (we’re screwed, folks):

(Thanks, adultswim!) 
Yeah… sometimes all you can do is nothing but laugh at how we’re jerked around by these way too large corporations…