Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Decade In Review.

The 2000's.

Yup, that happened.

Aw heck, I was going to leave this very short, but I'm starting to get all reminiscent.

This was a heck of a decade. There were some losses to my family that we are still feeling and some near losses but there were some new additions also.

I earned a Fine Art degree, and held a few different jobs.

I lost touch with some old friends but gained many many new friends.

I got to travel the world a bit, visiting New Zealand, London, Las Vegas and Philadelphia.

and most importantly:

I met my Lurve, moved into a new condo with my Lurve, got engaged to said Lurve and we'll be married Lurves by this time next year.

Happy New Year and here's to 10 more. For good or ill and to learning and growing.

*raises glass*

Monday, December 28, 2009

Movie Review: Avatar

Hello gang, I hope everyone had a nice X-Mas and are getting ready for a great New Years!

Yesterday, Elise and I walked up to the Capitol theater in Arlington to catch Avatar in 3D. We both weren't exactly taken with all the hype, but both felt that the technical achievements of the movie made it worth seeing in the theater in 3D instead of waiting for DVD. We were not disappointed.

The 3D was outstanding and almost completely immersive. I was only taken out of the experience when things like computer monitors were also displaying in 3D, it was so odd to see that I stopped focusing on the movie and focused on the monitor. It was perhaps a bit too cool of a visual.
The forest scenes were amazing and quite often nearly breathtaking.

The planet, Pandora was beautiful. The inhabitants were a weird mix of slightly familiar creatures with a twist and a HEAVY dose of deep sea creatures. This last part I found slightly distracting, some of the creatures were SO heavily deep sea that it took me out of the movie, while some others were so unusual that I wanted to see more of them!

The mix of live action and CGI was seamless. Absolutely seamless. The Na'vi each looked like individuals and the main characters all looked like their alien counterparts. It was almost too easy to forget that this wasn't some kind of amazing makeup and that the past 40 minutes was all computer imagery! When humans interacted with the Na'vi it was also completely believable. It was pretty astounding.
The eyes and those tiny facial movements and micro expressions that people make and that we don't necessarily consciously notice are what make CGI characters come to life and the Na'vi were absolutely life like.

The story is basically Dances With Wolves in space and was fairly stereotypical. This is not necessarily bad, it IS James Cameron after all, so you have to expect the movie to look better than it's written. The only really groan worthy part of the movie is the depiction of the bad guys. They're your basic mindless military and corporate slimes. Cameron pretty much just transplanted the jerks from Aliens straight into this movie. The bully's are all totally 1 dimensional and not much time is devoted to developing them, actually scratch that. NO time is devoted to developing them. For it's nearly 3 hours, only about 3 or 4 characters get any development time. But that's probably ok, there were a lot of people/characters running around and not all of them really had a lot to do. If they were each developed, the movie would have been 4-5 hours long! This is really a special effects movie and you just have to go with that.

So, to make a long review short, the movie may not be perfect but it is quite a lot of fun. The technical innovations that were created just for the movie well make the movie worth seeing in the theater. This WILL NOT be the same at home.

I give it a B+/A-

ps- I'm not sure if I'm looking forward to Na'vi cosplay at next years comic con's but there is no way we WON'T be seeing it. If it's done well, it'll be something to see. But, if it's not done'll be something to see.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Happy Winter Festivals!

So I hope everyone is all caught up on their End of the Year/Holiday preparations. I know I finally am. I also have some time off coming up! Which means I should be able to get through some of those comics that have been mocking me. Which in turn, also means more comic blogs! ...don't hold me to that though.

But in the mean time, I have a new Baman Piderman video I wanted to bring to your attention!

Behold! The Epic: Baman Piderman: Happy Winter Friends, Part 1!

Can Baman and Piderman save poor ol' Pumpkin?! I'm dying to know too!

While we all wait for the next part, I hope you all have a safe and Happy Holidays! the way, if you haven't ever seen Baman Piderman, you may want to scroll down and see my other posts about it. Otherwise this cartoon is going to be indecipherable!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Lesson: Magneto is a Dick.

I have been recording my collection of classic Marvel cartoons from VHS to DVD the past few days and I have had the chance to re-watch or at least re-listen to some odd happenings. For example, I present you:

Man! I thought Magneto was going to Hulk out for a minute there. I'm not even sure what I could possibly say that would be funnier than that video.

This is only the first few minutes of a 20 minute cartoon. It just gets weirder from there. Like, for instance, Magneto heading to the Baxter Building to take over leadership of the Fantastic Four because he feels he's more Fantastic than Mr. Fantastic. What a maroon!

So the lesson we have learned today?

Magneto is a Dick.

Friday, December 4, 2009

A Clash of Comic Titans!

Boy, I wasn't sure I was ever going to get around to another one of these! I apologize for the lack of posts. I feel like I haven't had a whole lot of time for catching up on my new comics, let alone reminiscing about my older ones. I have finally had some time to do some reading and catching up, thanks to the long Thanksgiving weekend. I made a dent in the new books and was also able to make a decent dent in the new older comics I have acquired as of late. Speaking of which, I present to you a very recently acquired Bronze Age book:

The Invincible Ironman #54

I had been looking for this for a bit because it has the first appearance of Moondragon, who was once a member of Adam Warlock's Infinity Watch and keeper of the Mind Infinity Gem. She is also currently a member of the new Guardians of the Galaxy and I have lately been attempting to collect the first appearances of the Guardians. With the purchase of this book I am nearly done, but coincidentally the book I am most seeking out to complete my set is the elusive Ironman #55! Which contains the first appearance of Drax The Destoryer and one of my favorite villains, Thanos! Seeing as this particular issue of Ironman was drawn and written my Jim Starlin and has the first veiled appearance of a major baddie, it's pretty had to come by in decent shape and under $100. So the hunt continues.
Back to the issue at hand, so to speak. When we first see the future Moondragon she is calling herself, get this, Madame MacEvil. Madame MacEvil? Really? She didn't put much thought into that one did she? Anyway, she decides to pit Ironman and Namor against each other to see who is tougher. She uses her supercomputer (who she argues with the entire issue, because she gave it emotions and it's all uppity) to take control of Tony's armor and then force him to attack Namor! Namor being Namor, assumes this is further proof that the surface dwellers can't be trusted and just dives right into the fight. Poor Tony is held helpless as he pummels and is pummeled by his ally. Eventually he regains control and zooms off not even trying to apologize to Namor, who at this point is (pardon yet another pun) royally pissed and probably wouldn't listen to reason anyway.

The issue ends pretty much around there without much explained, aside from everyone going their separate ways. Thanks to the ever helpful Wiki, it turns out that Moondragon *ahem* Madame MacEvil is not actually evil, she's running around trying to find someone that's strong enough to combat and defeat Thanos. As to exactly why, well, hopefully that story will be told once I get my mitts on that Ironman #55. Until then, this has been the Goog and I'm outta here!