Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Lost will be 18 episodes next season!

Good news:
The upcoming final season of Lost will run to 18 episodes, ABC has confirmed.

The news means that the show's sixth season will have one hour more than was originally planned.

According to Entertainment Weekly, the final season will include a two-hour premiere and a two-hour finale.

That means 20 more hours to explain this madness.

Friday, June 26, 2009

X-men are kind of incestual

I loved this. It's crazy that someone could put something like this together, but it is quite all-encompassing and a lot of fun. This is a little large so it will not fit on my blog, but if you want to check it out, just click on it to open the full page.

Monday, June 22, 2009

This made me laugh

This made me laugh as a comic book nerd, also since this kid looks like a younger version of my friend Ian to me.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Would this tie the room together?

I'm a Lebowski (really, my great-grandparents on my mother's side is named Lebowski) and I love this movie. This poster may be a bit unnecessary, but it is also kind of awesome. For anyone that wants their religion represented as a Lebowski last supper, feel free to buy this piece. Click here to purchase for only $19.99.

If anyone's curious. I saw this movie while I was studying abroad in London in 1998. I saw it 3 times in the theater and have watched it too many times since to count. In fact, I think I may throw it in the DVD player now as I "clean my apartment".

Lost's final season.

I found this interview with Matthew Fox about the final season of Lost coming up which makes me excited for the show's return and bitter that it won't be for about 6 months or so....

The link for the article below can be found here:

Matthew Fox: Lost's Bomb Fallout Will Be Surprising... and Confusing

Matthew Fox

Matthew Fox is using words such as "amazing," "incredibly satisfying," "very surprising" and "fairly confusing" to describe Lost's sixth and final season, which kicks off sometime in early 2010.

Emerging from the cone of silence lowered onto stars and producers after the Season 5 finale aired, Fox shared with the crowd at the 49th Monte-Carlo Television Festival a glimpse at the final 17 episodes. (CineTVBuzz.com posted video of the event.)

The season will begin with the aftermath of Juliet seemingly detonating the Jughead bomb's explosive core, in a development Fox said will be "very surprising — and probably fairly confusing, initially, to the audience."

About a third of the way into the season, Fox said, the show's two separate timelines — in 1977 and 2007 — "are going to be solidified into one, and we will be operating in a more linear time, to the end of the series." Once the show moves to one timeline, he said, flashbacks will cease, and the series will resolve on the island.

Oh, and about that big finish: "I do know how the show's going to end, I know what the last images will be," said Fox, who only would hint at it all leading to "a final conflict."

Perhaps — or not — on a related note, he mentioned that Jack and Locke "will come head-to-head again." But since the Season 5 finale seemed to indicate the real Locke is very dead, it's unclear if Fox was foretelling a showdown with Locke or the person or entity posing as Locke.

With just 17 hours remaining, can Lost possibly tie together all of its narrative threads and loose ends — from Dharma and the Others to Jacob's seemingly epic feud with the entity known in scripts as "Man No. 2"?

Fox feels confident that the writers "will prove that they did know all along where they were heading with it," he said. "All the pieces will come back into play."

But he also acknowledged: "You're not going to please all the people all the time."

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Black Hole

I am a huge comic book fan. However, I never really got into the Indy comic-scene too much. I'm mostly a Marvel Comics superhero junkie and Vertigo fan. This is mostly because of lack of cash and how expensive comics can be. That does not mean I'm not interested though. I would love to read all the comics out there but the high costs keep me from doing this.

Well, Aubrey has lots of comic nerds at her work who let her borrow some stuff, and I get to reap the benefits. Someone just allowed us to borrow the graphic novel Black Hole by Charles Burns and I have to admit, I was impressed. I had seen the book at comic stores many times, but did not know anything about it and never would have bought it if it wasn't recommended and loaned out to us.

I read the book over the course of 3 train rides, and I was quite impressed. I posted the cover so anyone interested can easily identify it in a store, but I posted the picture at the bottom because this is a page from early in the book that made me realize how intricate the black and white art work could be. The only negative thing I can think about the art is that I sometimes was confused about which character was which since there was little ways to differentiate the characters in black and white, but that is a very small critique.

This is not an easy read though. The book tells the story of a sexual transmitted disease that manifests itself by grotesquely mutating people's appearance. The mutations are different per character from a person that has hideous boils on their face and body, or someone that grows a second mouth.

I'm sure I missed TONS of symbolism in this book since symbolism was never my strong suit in comparative literature, but the story is obviously an allegory for the AIDS virus and how it effects a small-town. There is not that much dialog in the book, but the pictures really do tell the story. I was quite impressed with the book and am always impressed when comic books are more mature and though-provoking than normal prose novels.

The book is pretty cheap to buy on Amazon and think $12 really is a good deal for this book. This is definitely not a book for kids or teenagers, but I'm glad I read this now and not when I was in high school (even though I don't think it existed back then).

Over all this book really surprised me with its depth, art and maturity. Although it is not the most uplifting books I've ever read, it is really quite good.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Friday, June 5, 2009

Conan O'Brien

I've been a huge fan of Conan O'Brien for some time. I remember being a huge Letterman fan and when this new guy took over his show in 1993, I was unsure about him and very skeptical. It didn't take too long for me to start to really like Andy and the band, but I still was not sold on Conan. I don't remember when the switch came exactly, but probably around the time Letterman was a guest on the show and spoke so highly of Conan. Now, I didn't watch every night, it is on a little late, but whenever it was on, I always seemed to find something funny in the show: whether it was a look, a joke that didn't work and Conan's reaction, or an actual funny bit.
My favorite bit of his recurring gags has to be the Walker: Texas Ranger lever which if you have never seen, please click on the below links:
Walker Texas Ranger #1
Walker Texas Ranger #2
Walker Texas Ranger #3
Walker Texas Ranger #4
Walker Texas Ranger #5

He also could have been his funniest during the writer's strike 2 years ago where it was obvious he was winging most of the show and could not have been more entertaining. Well, you get the point.
When it was announced that Conan was going to become the host of the Tonight Show, I was a little worried that Conan was not going to be the same. Maybe he would tone down his ridiculousness or something. I'm not sure what I was worried about, because it has been 4 episodes, and he is the same. His first entrance he even did his famed string dance which I was afraid would have been retired. He still has the clunker jokes that don't quite work, but his reaction is what makes him fun. He still goes into the future (but now he named it in the year 3000, I liked how they never changed it from the year 2000 even how it is now 2009, but I digress), and his pre-taped recordings have been spot on so far showcasing Conan's amazing humor, wit, self depreciating and fun. Also, his guests have been quite fantastic and all of his favorite guests have been helping him out.
I'm not sure what the general public thinks of Conan O'Brien, but he's got the gig and I hope he wins over all of America like he did this 16 year old in 1993. I do not have hope for the tastes of America, so I hope I am proven wrong and Conan can have a run on the Tonight Show until he seems fit to leave and not be forced out the door.

I was just playing around on the web and I found some extra things. It appears some people think Conan's new set looks like backgrounds from the Super Mario video games. I think they may have a point. Check it:
What do you guys think?

Also, for those of you that haven't seen Conan's new show, at least watch the first 10 minutes or so of the first episode where he shows how he got from New York to LA. It is vintage Conan and his use of Cheap Trick was fun.
Watch it here

Thursday, June 4, 2009

You Suck

I finished this book by Christopher Moore last night. It is a quick, fun read about a 20 year old kid who gets turned into a vampire on page 1 by his girlfriend and them running around trying to deal with being vampires in present day San Francisco. There is not much substance to the book, it is a very fast read and there are some genuinely funny moments, but like the rest of Christopher Moore's books, I feel that something is missing.

This is the 3rd book of his that I have read and I see many comparisons to Tom Robbins in his writing style, but the problem that I find is that Tom Robbins seems to have something to say about people, society, religion or whatever and Christopher Moore has the ability to write an entertaining book, but it seems like he doesn't say anything in all of his books. I even read his book Lamb which is the story of Jesus from when he was a kid up until his death and it followed what he did in his youth in a comedic way, but even that book seemed to not say much.

This is not to say his books are not entertaining. They are. Very entertaining, but when you look back you realize very little happened and you wonder if it was worth the time it took to read.

I will say this though. You Suck had a very awesome scene in it where one of the main characters ran into a main character of Moore's other book A Dirty Job which I read about 2 years ago. They didn't just run into the character, the exact same scene was written, but this time it was from the You Suck point of view. I was reading along and got a sense of deja vous so I picked up A Dirty Job and literally opened up to the right page where Jody from You Suck was having a conversation with Charlie from A Dirty Job. I remember reading that book and thinking that scene was weird, and never explained when I finished, and it finally was. The books were written only a year apart (according to their copyright dates) so I'm sure he wrote both books around the same time, but I really appreciate when authors take you into their own worlds like that. It's probably the Marvel Universe kid in me.

So You Suck is a fun, witty, page-turning read that really does not have much substance, but if you are a fan of Christopher Moore I'm sure it is up your alley. It is not as good as Lamb which is so far his best since it almost had something to say, but I found this more fun of a read than A Dirty Job, but honestly, I think I'm done reading his books. I completed my own personal Trilogy and I think it's time to read some other books with more substance. Either that, or it's time for the newest Alex Cross adventure.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Pixar's Up

When you keep on writing good reviews, does your credibility as a reviewer go out the window? I have a pretty broad taste in lots of things, and it must be strange for my last 3 reviews to be glowing for a gypsy-curse horror film, a political biopic and now a children's cartoon about a man that has his home fly away on a bunch of helium balloons, but here I go. (But don't worry, stick around until the end and there will be some negativity.)

Last night Aubrey and I went to see Up in digital 3D. Like the rest of Pixar's films, this one was enjoyable, heartfelt, visually amazing and just a lot of fun.

First off, I am a huge fan of these digital 3D films. From Beowolf to Coraline and now this they always seem to pop off the screen and although the luster does wear off a bit after 10 minutes of wearing the glasses, that first image that pops off always shocks me. I kind of wish there were no 3D previews and that initial shock would come in the actual movie, but I understand advertising comes first.

This Pixar film began like all others, with a short film that has some sort of common denominator with the feature presentation. This was a wordless five minute film about a bunch of storks delivering new-borns to parents. It follows them from delivering their puppies to their doggy parents up into the clouds, where the clouds are creating the babies, then zapping them with lightning to give them life, the wrapping them up to give to the storks to redeliver the babies. It then focuses on this one gray, small cloud that keeps creating fierce animals, like sharks and porcupines to its poor stork that continues to get injured delivering these babies to their parents. The stork finally is so injured it goes to a different cloud which upsets its original cloud since he is just doing what he's supposed to do. It turns out the stork loved doing his job, but didn't like getting injured, so he just went to another cloud to get some protective gear and he comes returns to his cloud to continue his duties and everyone is happy. This doesn't sound like much, but the imagination, and visual stimulous that is used to convey all of this is comical, effective and downright genius. Not to mention the 3D animation that is used and how beautiful it is, I truly believe Pixar has yet to release anything that is not above any potential competition.

The feature of UP began after that. The first 10 minutes of this movie are some of the truly most heartfelt few minutes of anything I've seen possibly since watching The Notebook a few years ago (I'm sorry, but that movie can make almost anyone cry.) This shows the main character as a young boy meet a girl very much like him, and then follows their life through getting married, realizing they can't have kids, how they are trying to save money all their life and how their plan keeps getting derailed, how they grow old together and she finally dies as an old woman. This 1o minutes is so sweet, sad, and tender with hardly a word spoken, it is truly one of the best 10 minutes of anything I've ever seen. It tells a complete story, and the viewer is never left to wonder anything.

After this, the real plot begins which I will not get into here. A guy makes his house fly and adventures ensue. Let's just say, I thought from the trailer this movie would be just OK. I was thoroughly entertained for the entire run-time and was sad when it ended. Visually beautiful, fun, sweet, kind, pure laugh-out-loud moments and a great theme and story.

Now for my gripe: I went to see this movie at 9:15 on a Tuesday night. That means the movie doesn't get out until 11:00 at night or so. I did this for a few reasons, but mostly because I didn't want to see the movie with a bunch of screaming, crying children. I figured that late at night on a weeknight, there will be a bunch of stoner high school kids, and dorks like me going to see this. I guess I underestimated how horrible parents are. There were 2 sets of screaming kids on both sides of the theater. Luckily for me, the loudest and the one talking throughout happened to sit right behind me. Right when the movie began, the little girl started screaming at her mother because she didn't want to wear the 3D glasses that are necessary for seeing the movie in focus. Now, I understand children are difficult. I understand being a parent is hard. What I do NOT understand is why you would drag your difficult child to a movie that this 3 year old could care less that she is watching. I know this girl liked the movie (I know this because she was very vocal about the parts that she did like in a volume that was impossible to ignore), but she would have been just as happy to stay at home at watch the exact same videotape/movie that she has probably seen 300 times by now. You know why I know this? Because I was a kid and I listened to the same records a million times. Children are very easy to take care of because they do not have sophisticated tastes yet. They like fun, pretty things. They like to dance and sing and jump around while watching these things. In today's society there is absolutely no reason for children to go to the movie theater. Home theaters are pretty good, and you can watch a bootleg version of any movie for $5 what would cost you $30 at a theater. On top of that, these movies then can be watched ad nauseum as kids tend to enjoy anyway.
This is not to say kids should not go to movies in the theater. I believe they should. I also believe every person of every age should see this movie UP in particular. I also believe there is a time and a place for everything. The time for a child to see a movie is before 6PM. Period, end of story. A three year old child should be in bed by 9:00 at the absolute latest. They should probably be in bed well before that. I cannot tell you how many times I almost yelled at the woman behind me, but really that is not my place. I can't teach common sense to parents, I can just rant about it on my blog and hopefully when I have kids I can keep my common sense and not act like many bad parents do.

END OF RANT - for now.

In conclusion: Go see Up. It is absolutely amazing!