On Storytelling: 30 Seconds or Bust

So, yep, I’ve been a bit unwell these past few days, but things are looking up. Or rather, I’m looking up at the ceiling earlier this morning and remembering “Oh yeah, I have a lot of writing to do!” as assorted creaks and groans emanate from under the covers. If one’s body is supposed to be a temple, mine is the heart-wrenching (ow) Temple of Doom, minus the fun but deadly mine cart stage. Oh, it used to be there and a hell of a ride it was (a regular E Ticket experience, whee!). But you know how things fall apart over time? Well, that part dropped into the lava about ten days ago and along with all the King’s horses and most of his men. It’s so NOT good to be the King when this sort of thing happens, but we push on. When the going get tough, the tough… kinda go back to bed for a wee bit.

Anyway, as a quick writing exercise as well as a tick towards some much needed humor, I’ve decided to practice on an unwilling audience this form of torture that I hope you appreciate (whipcrack!). Well, it’s not as bad as it sounds (hopefully).

(Thanks, James Bond 007!)

Now, pay attention.

Continue reading

Lost in Space: Dos Equis Boots Its Classy Coot to Mars


So, yeah… this happened. Dos Equis has decided to get rid of send off its former Most Interesting Man in the World and replace him with a to be announced younger dude who’s guaranteed to be more annoying and a lot less interesting (to me at least) because that’s what happens these days when a company practices ageism just to get more hipster doofus types soused out of their skulls (or: PROFIT!). Anyway, he’s going gracefully and humorously into that cold dark trip to his certain death, but hey – what a way to go, right?

Provided the fuel and liquid sustenance (which are both many kegs of Dos Equis) hold out, wait ’til he gets to “Mars” (hey, I saw Capricorn One TOO many times, folks) and finds Regis Philbin, Bob Barker and a bunch of other formerly popular celebs of a certain age booted off their shows for guzzling Geritol already up there playing golf. Betty White isn’t up there because she’s an alien (what, you didn’t know?) as are a few other oldsters you still see pop up on the tube.

The funny thing here is I had NO idea Mexico had a space program. American companies are sending them our jobs (they’re NOT “taking” them, ladies and gents) and they’re sending our fine American acting talent to other planets. That’s just not right, folks. Ah well, all this confusion and heavy thinking is making me want a beer. Any suggestions?

A Double Shot of Retro Pop Box For Your Wednesday

RPB November Stuff (5)

Due to my dopey old laptop giving up the ghost around the time last month’s Retro Pop Box arrived and me running about doing the headless chicken thing for a bit, I’m just getting around to posting the goodies in that box now. Amusingly enough, this month’s box popped up in the mail as I was getting ready to write this post, so you get two (*smooch!*), TWO mints in one! Or something like that. Anyway, November’s RPG looked like this once opened:

RPB November Stuff (6)

And inside were the following 70’s themed items:

 

The RPB exclusive T-shirt made me grin and yes, it’s gotten some comments thanks to that funky retro design. That Silly String (which I’m saving for the proper occasion) came with a card detailing the product’s creation and rather cool usefulness as a means for soldiers to locate booby trap tripwires in war zones (and making me wonder how much the military is paying per can or if the stuff has to be shipped out by families who want their loved ones coming home safe). That Evel Knievel First Aid Kit made me laugh out loud because while it’s not vintage, I immediately imagined the stunt king of the 70’s packing one of these in every pocket of his star-spangled jumpsuit with a spare inside his helmet each time he made one of those death-defying jumps on ABC back in the day.

I hadn’t seen a Mood Ring in some years, so having one handy is quite nice (Current mood: Happy!). I’ll need to wear that CULT LEADER button with the Retro Pop Box logo one day when I’m out and about just so when someone asks about one, I can tie in the other without worrying about them getting the wrong idea. Yes, I’d say my cult is RPB and they NEED TO JOIN. NOW. (without an “or else!” on the end of that demand. We’re a nice bunch of nostalgia-heads. As for that Brady Bunch lanyard, my brain is flicking through its Rolodex to see if I recall anyone named Marcia because this would be a groovy gift for her. Hey, better a colorful lanyard than a football to the nose, right? Yeah, I thought so.

As for December’s RPB, read on for more on that one… Continue reading

VGA 101: Happy Birthday, Sega Dreamcast: “It’s Thinking”… But Probably About Better Times.

Note: This isn’t at ALL a “complete history” of the console. It’s just more random off the top of the head wistful reminiscing!

(thanks, Wiidork!)
 
For one brief, shining moment (well, that moment lasted three years or so), Sega has many of us gamers on the edge of our seats and extremely happy about it. Once the US arm of the company deemed the Saturn “dead” and started peeling away support for it, there was a gap of time where we were wondering what was coming next. When whispers of a new and more powerful console code-named “Katana” started getting traction in the game press, followed up by early screenshots of works in progress, some fans were trumpeting that upcoming console as a redemption and return to form for the company and in Japan, while Saturn games were still being sold, it seemed that everywhere you went in some spots, ads popped up announcing something was coming from Sega that would be new, unusual and exciting. And oh, was it when it finally did arrive… Continue reading

Diablo III: Reaper of Souls – Ultimate Evil Edition TV Spot: Giving That Devil His Due (Before He Does You In)…

August 19 is right around the corner and that means quite a few people are planning to take a little vacation to hell and back with this console version of the Reaper of Souls expansion for Diablo III. This one’s going to eat away at productivity here, which isn’t a good thing at all, so I’m actually going to hold off picking it up for about a week or so while I knock the pile of work I have here down to a more manageable size. That’s not to say YOU shouldn’t run like hell out to grab this one on day one if you’re a fan of the series (you absolutely SHOULD). I just know myself all to well and know I’ll just pull a disappearing act if I get this and there’s “suddenly” some “free time” that pops up like a rabbit out of a hat…

Guardians of the Galaxy Featurette 2/TV Spot 5: Settling In For The Long Haul (And Reliable Predictability)…

 
I’d say right about now that Guardians of the Galaxy will indeed be comfortably predictable on a few fronts. I usually go in to these movies with zero expectations, but I suppose I have to accept the fact that Marvel wants fans to know they’re getting the full meal deal here: LOADS of in-jokes, some serious stuff in between the jokes, plenty of last-minute escapes and plot twist or four and some fun use of music if you happen to be well-aged and savvy about such things or just happen to “get” the musical stuff the film drops into your ears when it does.

 
And yes, you HAVE to stick around until the credits roll because there’s going to be a surprise reveal that ties into previous and upcoming Marvel movies that some fans will be wanting to drop that ticket and merchandise money on. All that is a given at this point because messing with the formula (as formulaic and formic as it can be) is a recipe for confusion among some folks. But it’s something that works well for what it’s worth, so I’m not complaining much (if at all)…

Guardians of the Galaxy TV Spot 1: Call In The Criminals!

 
And so it begins, the deluge of TV spots for this most eagerly awaited of all the recent Marvel movies. If this one fails to do well (although all signs point to it doing very well indeed), there goes the sort of “indie” pillar Marvel was looking for in getting more than just superhero fans to embrace their new and improved lineup of upcoming film, TV and online projects. My money’s on this being a surprise hit, but in looking over the other properties, there are a few weak links that aren’t assured to be major hits thanks to a few things such as digital distribution not being something everyone wants or can access when they want where they want when it comes to getting those new shows. Granted, the success of other shows being binge-watched by too many people is a huge draw for anyone who wants to produce content that they feel will be snapped up by the eager masses who want it. On the other hand, alienating that part of the audience that’s not willing or able to buy in is never a good thing as no one likes to be told “You can’t have it!” when they indeed, WANT it. But I’m getting ahead of myself here (as always)…

Edge of Tomorrow TV Spots 1 & 2: Yeah, Yeah. Cruise-ing Along At Top Gun Speed…

Boom. As good as this looks in that epic, busywork CG explodey summer blockbustah way, as i’ve said before, I just cannot get behind a Tom Cruise flick these days for a few reasons I won’t go into again. I’ll still see this because the trailers make it look interesting, but only when it eventually pops up on cable sometime early next year (I’m guessing January or February based on how fast some films are showing up these days). Yeah, he’s absolute gold at the movies and can act up a storm, but I’ve found there are some people you go through part of life just not liking after a certain point (and that’s all I’ll say about that). Now, I’m not going to stop you at all from spending your ticket money, folks. So have a blasteroo and let me know if this one’s worth paying to see if you do end up going to see it.

Godzilla “Calling” TV Spot: And You’d Better Answer Or Else!

 
Soooo, what did you do this weekend? Well. it’s STILL the weekend, so what WILL you be doing at some point before this weekend is over? As noted previously, I’d have seen Godzilla already if there was a local theater to see it at, but the last one in this area is being turned into a store we don’t need, sooo… I’m just lurking about doing stuff like posting early on a Sunday morning. Anyway, mixed reviews aside, I’d say the film is going to be a hit with most fans and there will probably be a sequel at some point. Of course, the true test is the overseas box office (as in Japan, where that big lizard was created back in 1954), so I guess Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures will be keeping an eyeball on the reception there as well.

Godzilla: Now Playing AND Coming (Back) To A Comic Shop Near You!

Godzilla Cataclysm CoverYep, it’s here and as I predicted, some of the older and fogey-er critics are knocking this about a wee bit too much, comparing it to the 1954 US dub with the inserted Raymond Burr scenes. Boo on those party poopers and their constant penchant for only art house films and other stuff that’s “dryly entertaining”, I say. Sometimes you NEED a good monster stomping up the joint, even if this film isn’t a big battle royale extravaganza like Pacific Rim was.

Anyway, the big guy is also making a big comeback to comics thanks to publisher IDW, writer Cullen Bunn and artist Dave Wachter. Godzilla: Cataclysm is headed to retailers this summer (actual date TBA), and while not tied in to the film at all, it’s probably going to be required reading for fans of that big ticked off lizard. I’ll need to dig up some pages from this to peek at soon, as that cover is rather nicely done.