The Violent Blue blog***Comics, Horror and Pop Culture***Updates Tuesday through Friday (and occasionally at random)

Archive for January, 2014

111

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

New_111

Advertisements

Lydia’s princess autograph!

Autographs

Special Lydia autograph log today!

In the past I think we’ve had nicer successes. We send Disneyworld a card asking for a specific princess or character (I got Lilo and Stitch) and they would send us an “autographed” photo. Maddie got Cinderella back in the day. Well, I recently sent out a request for princesses but specifically Rapunzel for Lydia. A few weeks She received this!

It’s a pre-print and just a post card, but it was mail from the princesses with her name on it so she was still thrilled. The girls actually pull it out and put it in the castle or dollhouse wherever they happen to be playing with their princess dolls at the time!

disney_princess__s_autograph_by_memyselfnmusic-d572xxc


110

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

New_110


In Defense of Star Trek : Insurrection

defenseToday we’re talking about what is actually my untitledfavorite of the Next Generation movies. I’ve never understood the hat this movie gets. I have heard more than ne person tell me this is a worse movie than Star Trek Five.

This is frequently used as positive proof that Jonathan Frakes can’t direct. Funny, considering he also directed what is arguably considered the best film of the series too; First Contact. I do see his flair in it. The zooming shots, a lot of camera movement. Many of the set-ups are simple, but certainly not bad.

This film gets lambasted for it’s humor – as if humor was never a part of Star Trek. Why do I never hear that criticism leveled at “The Trouble With Tribbles”? It’s really more than just humor in this film, it’s familiarity. We should be comfortable enough with the characters that it’s a reunion. If you’re expecting 2001 from a Star Trek movie then I don’t know what you’re thinking. They tried that with the first film. It didn’t work. To be fair, by this time Trek movies had devolved into simple sci-fi action flicks…and  that includes Generations. and yeah, most of them have EXACTLY the same ending. This is still one of the better versions of it though…

sonaThe ships in this film are gorgeous – and it’s one of the first times we really some serious new design work  in TNG in ages. A pity that the interiors look like any other Okuda hell, but those ships hulls are beautiful and a nice departure from First Contact.

Speaking of First Contact- I like the movie, but it really doesn’t have a story.  No,  think about it. The characters drift from one engagement to the next – it’s a video game. A fun ride but no real plot. This movie has a narrative, growth in 2the characters (which we sadly abandon at the end because everything has to return to the status qoe) and some good plot twists. It has great actors like F. Murry Abraham and Anthony Zerke.

If the gags bug you, ignore them. Try watching this for the romp that it is and visit with these characters we really grew to care about. There’s not to many movies in the TNG film period and it’s a shame to have to throw this one out.


109

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

New_109


Servant Warrior

commissions

I spent a lot of the past year doing work for Angel Lite Comics. This is a pinup of one of it’s flagship characters – the Servant Warrior.

Servant Warrior

And don’t forget, new Violent Blue tomorrow!


107

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

New_107


Mother, Jugs and Speed

forgotten bannerjugsWe’ve got a new column this year, showcasing weird but fun films that I keep discovering and wonder why I never heard of them before.

We’re kicking this off with “Mother Jugs and Speed” from 1976

Look at this films stars for a moment….Bill Cosby, Raquel Welch, Bruce Davidson from before he was quite as well known (though I spotted him immediately. I’m a big fan not only form X-Men, but also Kingdom Hospital, Lords of Salem and a whole slew of other stuff).
Larry Hagman’s in this too! This is before Dallas, he still had the good guy image from I Dream of Jeannie (although this film would manage to kill that noise real quick)  and Harvey Kitel!

From IMDB : Competition between privately owned LA ambulance companies is played for humour.

Yeah, that really doesn’t begin to describe it.

imagesCAV50E7MIt’s very much a product of it’s time, with ambulance calls going awry, Raquel fighting to be taken seriously despite her gender, Cosby popping beers while he drives…but good fun, never particularly raunchy even though it may seem like that kind of movie.

Things get serious a couple of times, but never enough for you  to mistake this for a drama. Seriously, give this a try, I found it on Amazon for under $10. It’s great vintage Cosby, shaggy Bruce Davidson and really fun to watch just how big a douche Larry Hagman plays!

 


Disney Infinity

gameruntitledWell, Christmas has come and gone and I’ve got a few new games to talk about. First up is the Disney infinity, Disney’s answer to Skylanders. That’s not an accusation of Disney ripping off someone else’s idea by the way. The idea of taking a physical toy and making it interact with a virtual game world is long overdue. Skylanders just got there first, and as a result, they are what the rest are judged against.

Because I’m not a gamer and my kids are young girls, we have a Wii. images3Experience may differ on other platforms, but I’m not so sure.

The sculpts on the figures are wonderful. Fun, and detailed, they may actually be superior to Skylanders in that respect. The fact that you get to play with familiar characters like Captian Jack or the Monster’s Inc guys is a HUGE plus. The game doesn’t have to create it’s own world from scratch. Then again, toys are something Disney does well.

imagesCAM0B6F1Video games on the other hand are not.

The infinity worlds feel cheap. Slapped together. It’s a failing I’m more prone to assign to Disney than to Nintendo too. I’ve see namazing worlds on the Wii – Metroid immediately comes to mind. I have on the other hand, seen Disney put out truckloads of poorly coded games and sell them at a premium because they are Disney. We specifically got the Vanellope character from Wreck-it Ralph because I untitled3desperately want a good version of the Sugar Rush racing game. The racer that came with Vanellope was awful. Slow speeds, uninspired cars, blocky characters….and don’t tell me that’s a limitation of the console. Play Mario Kart just ONCE and you’ll see how great this console can handle racers.

The real tragedy of this game however is the VERY limited co-op, available only in the mini-games in the “Toybox” environment, not in the adventure track. This is unforgivable, especially since the packaging proudly proclaims two player gaming. Again, I’m told this is a limitation of the console, but again, it doesn’t seem to bother Skylanders any. Seems more like a limitation of the Disney Developers instead. I was untitled2hellbent on getting the Lone Ranger set (and by the way, after the rather poor performance of the film, how on earth can they justify that $35.00 price tag???) but with such limited co-op functionality…I’m just going to get the Lone Ranger. I’m sorry if this offends, but really, what’s the point of playing Tonto solo?

Speaking of characters, I’m appalled at the limited releases. There seems to be a focus on male gamers – but that’s not Disney’s core market. images2Where are the princesses? Rapunzel was on the shelf for about five minuets six months ago, sold out and never restocked. The Frozen girls are out, and that’s it. Where are the girl warriors like Pocohontas and Mulan and Meridia? Here’s a radical thought. Put out a princess edition of the infinity with three (perhaps limited edition sculpts) classic and neo classic princesses? Ariel, Cinderella and Snow White perhaps. Aladdan and Jasmine sets, Belle and Beast sets (oh look! Target boys and girls at the same time!)…where are these??? This stuff should have been first wave and then shortpacked every wave after!

Perhaps they will come if the system lastsimages5 long enough, but I’m not sure I’d be taking bets on that. With such a poor reception, the infinity is likely going to die, but seeing as it’s Disney, the existing parts will linger, making it a slow death.

Go buy a Skylanders Swap force instead.


106

essentialPosting the best strips from the series, in order from the beginning.

Every Wednesday and Friday

New_106