A Year in Movies

Image result for watching movies gif

Toward the end of 2017, I got into the habit of seeing one movie in theaters every single week. It became a steady part of my routine, so much so that I dedicated myself to seeing one movie a week every week of 2018 and keeping a rolling list.

I failed.

Not miserably so, I ended up being just 5 shy. Various weeks of extreme business and the inevitable business of the holidays prevented me from fully reaching my goal. Still, 47 movies in a year is not bad.
Continue reading

Advertisements

The Ultimate

Image result for into the spider-verse gif

With Into the Spider-Verse receiving insanely high and much deserved praise from critics and viewers alike, I wanted to take a quick moment to talk about Miles Morales and why we need to do whatever we can to keep him in the mainstream limelight.

Miles is by no means new. He’s been in the comics since 2011 and in cartoons since 2014 or so. However, his appearance on the big screen, as a main character at that, is the first time Miles has become a household name. A whole movie focuses on his origin, from bite to getting his own costume and saving the day. This is Miles’s moment, and it is blowing up around the internet. And that’s exactly how it should be.

Miles is the superhero kids today need to know about and look up to. He is the absolute best superhero role model for today’s youth, much more so than Peter Parker.
Continue reading

Guide to Nerd Shopping

Image result for holiday shopping gif

I don’t have very long to write because I still have a Podcast Episode to finalize and packing to do for traveling south for Holiday stuff. Busy time of year. Yeesh.

I did however want to do a quick community service post. This topic hits really close to home for me as I get approached about it quite a lot, specifically like so:

My [FRIEND/RELATION] is really into [HOBBY/COLLECTIBLE]. Which one should I get them?

Okay, at the very get-go, this is nearly impossible for someone to just SOLVE. Namely, the question just doesn’t have enough information. Whether the person is into board games, comics, movies, figures, roleplaying games, or anything, simply approaching someone also familiar with those things and saying “find them a gift” is not going to cut it. Typically, I respond with three questions:

  1. Do you know what they need?
  2. Do they frequently by new [PRODUCT] or just have an extended library of classics?
  3. Do you mind getting them something they potentially already have?

I ask these questions because it helps me dictate what the appropriate item to purchase for a gift should be. To alleviate the NEED for the questions, I’m going to give you the three key gifts for someone with a hobby. This can be anything from tabletop war games to stamp collecting to shoes and clothes. Essentially if there is something that someone spends a distinct portion of their time gathering, learning about and engaging in, here is how to shop for them once the Holidays roll around.

Continue reading

Turkey and Gratitude

Image result for funny thanksgiving gif

Things I am thankful for:

  • Fallout 76. Thank you for reminding me that even things that I love will one day disappoint and betray me.
  • Donny Cates. For showing that sometimes the best way to create something new is by simply cramming two old things together and going with whatever the result is.
  • Netflix. Thanks for doing that jumpscare intro for a month or so around halloween. It’s good to know my heart is still healthy.
  • Leftovers. A month from now I will have something to do when I open the fridge, see the dozen or so tupperware and say “oh, ew, we still have leftovers.”
  • The 2018 Election. Thank you for showing that we live in a country where a state that is very evenly split between two parties will receive mockery and ire from the rest of the country instead of being praised as a prime example of democracy at work.
  • Keyforge. Randomly generate names for decks in an incredibly random card game? Cool idea. Who knew it would be the source of such simplistic comedy.
  • Food Network Cooking Challenges. Thank you for the opportunity to sit and be loudly judgmental of  someone else’s culinary abilities and choices. It’s the perfect accompaniment to my microwaved Spaghetti-O’s.
  • Son’y Spider-Man. Not really anything funny to say, just thank you. The whimsy and joy this game gave me was remarkable. I felt like I kid again the whole time. I can’t wait to play the DLC.
  • My three cats. Honestly, that whole desire to have a clean home was just getting in the way anyway. Good lookin’ out, cats.
  • Bradley Cooper. Thank you for making the bar of attractive male so incredibly high. Seriously, I was worried it would be too easy to be considered attractive. Handsome, funny, great beard, Well educated, multi-lingual, talented actor, talented voice actor and, thanks to A Star is Born, musically talented both on an instrument and in voice. Awesome. Thank you SOOOOO much, you ass.
  • The Haunting of Hill House. Thank you for bringing the hidden ghost concept to mind so now I can’t watch any show or movie or even walk through my own home without looking for subtle ghosts hiding somewhere.
  • White Barn 3-Wick Candles. It’s nice to have an addiction that at least smells good. Still an addiction, though. Seriously. This is a cry for help.
  • The people of New Orleans. I thought I knew what drinking was, but you guys showed me there is just like a whole other tier of drinking I didn’t know existed.

 

And of course, I am thankful for my awesome friends, wonderful family, and my lovely wife. Thank you to all those people for being in my life.

Now I better start cooking or those friends are going to beat me.

~C

Excelsior!

Image result for stan lee

The big news this week is that Stan Lee, Marvel mastermind and general imagination advocate, passed away on Monday at the age of 95. By now, we’ve all heard about it, and most people appear to be responding in the same way.

All this week, I’ve had people come up to me or message me asking what I think. I’ve had a lot of people telling me how the news ruined their day or generally bummed them out. People on Facebook, Twitter and Reddit have been sharing stories and pictures of Stan Lee. A myriad of artists have posted tribute pieces to Stan the Man. There has been a massive, collective vigil across the comics community and it’s impressive to see. Honestly, it’s a testimony to the effect he had on the world.

I think what’s important when a celebrity passes is to focus on their achievements. Focus on the fact that they were able to put something into the world and watch it grow. They were able to cultivate so much love and admiration simply out of their talents and determination. Look at them for inspiration and drive forward. If they truly touched your heart or inspired you in some way, then make them proud. Focus that grieving energy on living the life THEY would want you to lead.

In the case of Stan Lee, we have a man who was actively working and creating all the way up to his passing. While his last year may have seen him slowing a bit as he dealt with pneumonia and some conflict with people close to him, he still continued to interact with fans and do what he can to inspire people. Stan Lee passes having left behind a massive legacy that he got to watch rise, nearly fall, and come back even stronger. He got to see the birth of a whole new way of telling the stories he had helped cultivate. He got to expand and refine his abilities, dipping into everything from Manga to poetry to video games. This man was an absolute power house of imagination and passion. It’s really no surprise so many feel the way they do right now.

Hell, I want that. The truth of the world is that we all have to go sometime, and honestly that right there is the perfect way to go out: still passionate, still creating, still watching your legacy thrive. Going out on top. Being a superhero all the way to the end.

So let’s all try to live our lives the way Stan did. Let’s all find our passion and spend every waking hour with it. Let’s give back into the world and expect only happiness in return. Let’s challenge ourselves and break out of our comfort zones from time to time in the name of extending our reach. Let’s build legacies that touch as many people as we can. Not for us, but for them. Let’s use our talents to give people something to look toward or escape to or find comfort in.

We all, each and every one of us, has the power to bring joy to others.

We just have to find the responsibility.

Image result for stan lee gif

~C

Another Super Helpful Band Name Master List

Image result for The Archies Gif

On occasion, my group of friends and I will say something and go “Golly! That would make a neato band name!”

We then form that band and play at the Riverdale High Pep Rally (Go Bulldogs). We look over and everyone has a good laugh as we catch Principal Weatherbee boogieing down! Meanwhile, there’s a commotion from the hall! Seems Miss Beazley caught Jughead in the pantry again!

Oh Jughead…

Seriously, Jughead. Get help, my dude.

Anyway, here is the second part of my ever growing list of band names that I actually have the forethought or sobriety to jot down. Enjoy!

  • Refugees Louise
  • Karmic Institution
  • The ILLbillies
  • MOOD (Melancholy Observations On Death)
  • Corn Dog Nuggets
  • Band Wanton
  • Gesticular Torsion
  • Pop, Lock and Crocs
  • Chug o’ War
  • #800000 V
  • President Weevil
  • Guy’s Flavor Town Hall
  • Professional Rossplayers
  • Barely Normal Activity
  • Galbladder
  • We Read Books
  • Towel Whip Assassin
  • Larry Berry’s Dairy Prairie
  • Karaoke Dokey!
  • The Waluigi Preservation Society
  • The Captain and Two Neals
    • Now FINDING two Neals might be tough for some people. I suggest just starting the band and then legally changing your name.
  • [Randall, Put the Band’s Logo Here Later]
  • Paper Wait
  • Aspic
  • Indie Group That Uses Big Words In Our Songs
  • Ass & Avocados
  • We Aren’t Real People
  • Thanos’s Ash Tray
    • Too soon?
  • Rocky Horror Powerpoint
  • Frankenstein`s Security Deposit
  • Bitin’ Wachootoos
  • Frijole Moly!
  • Eggs Cumberbatch
  • Grapple Pie
  • The What
  • The Why
  • The When
  • The How
  • The Where
  • The WhoWhatWhenWhereWhyHow
  • I’ll Be Bach
  • Here Today, Gone Tamale
  • Anti-Cripes
  • LED Orchestra
  • Three Random Bitches
  • Clog Cabin
  • Green Cockle Denomination
  • Foot Test Massage
  • Beast N’ Cheddar
  • Absolue Lack of Musical Ability (ALMA)
  • Alt-F4
  • Alt128701
  • Noir for Kids
    • With hits like “Jimmy Twitch ain’t gonna snitch” and “Who’s in the Trunk, Who’s at the Pier”
  • Elon’s Musk
  • Toy Hearse
  • (the) cold smoke
  • Pill-O-Talk
  • Bran’s Parachute
  • Lucky Harms
  • Yeet & Sour
  • Iron Laden
  • Trolling Stones
  • High Ground
  • When Doves Sigh all passive aggressively, y’know? Like they want you to know they’re mad, but they won’t just say that.

 

And there you have it! Select your favorite and then go bring music to whatever venue will be willing to give you drink tokens or a handful of crumpled ones to play for them!

Also, still #TeamVeronica.

~C

Monster

Image result for night of the demon gif

Halloween is approaching: a time when all manner of ghost, ghoul and monster crawl their way from the deep abyss of our fears to roam the mortal realm in search of their next fright. It’s also a time of year where Diabetes awareness gets sidelined. Spooky stuff.

In the spirit of the Holiday, I wanted to bring something up. Namely, I wanted to discuss the single scariest monster of all the catalog of monsters. One that has lumbered his way through American history, always looming just out of sight and evading capture.

That’s right.

Image result for sasquatch gif

BIGFOOT
Continue reading

Putting the “Camp” in “Campy Slasher Flick”

Image result for sleepaway camp gif

A classic in the Horror genre of films is the Slasher sub-genre. Anybody who is even fairly familiar with horror movies might recognize the concept of a slasher film: stalking psychopath terrorizes group of protagonists and viciously murders them, often in creative or convenient ways. This sub-genre itself has spawned many of the tropes and patterns often attributed to the horror genre as a whole, such as the whole “rules” concept presented in detail in the Scream series.

In the past, I’ve had to introduce friends and acquaintances to horror movies. I have watched an absolute ton, as horror is by far my favorite genre of just about any media, but not everybody has been so keen on horror for most of their lives, maybe occasionally seeing some mainstream fair but not much more. As such, I have an arsenal of films to introduce people to different elements of horror, from the seriously artful to the campy and ridiculous. When it comes to slasher films, there is only ONE clear choice as to which sadistic murderer needs to be the first one to stab their way into a newbie’s heart.
Continue reading

Let’s Talk Ghosts

Image result for ghost gif

Growing up, I lived in a fairly old (I’m assuming), kinda weirdly laid out house. It had it’s usual sort of symphony you find in places like this, creaking of the wood expanding and depressing, rumbly pipes when in use, that sort of thing. However, from time to time, we’d hear or see something a little more dubious: footsteps up and down a hallway or a figure lingering at the corner of your eye. My whole family has various creepy stories that came from that house. Nothing exceptionally aggressive or crazy, just creepy stuff. Very subtle things.
Continue reading

Boys in the Trees

I recently watched “Boys in the Trees” on Netflix, a movie I had honestly skipped over time and time again when looking for something to watch, and I am SO incredibly glad I finally gave it a shot.

First of all, I skipped it over because of how Netflix made it sound. The description of this movie is:

“They once were friends, but now hormones and high school divide them. On Halloween, however, the rules don’t apply.”

They accompany this with a lot of wolf-based imagery and scenes of teens doing hooligan type stuff. I assumed, to be perfectly honest, that I was gonna get a “Lost Boys meets the Howling” kinda deal. I was expecting ruffian teens who are also werewolves to some capacity terrorizing a small Australian town. Maybe some good creatures effects, probably just a bunch of cheap CGI, move along.

What I ended up getting was a gorgeous coming of age story with a horror twist. I got a movie that reminded us to keep to our dreams, that promises matter, especially those we make to ourselves, and to always remember those we left behind as we grew up.
Continue reading