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Archive for July, 2014

The 23rd Psalm

filmography

We’ve got a special filmography clip for you today! Shortly after we wrapped the adventures of Mr. Kidzpointe I got a call to do a video illustrating the 23rd Psalm. We  still had a bit of a drama team together and I called in a couple other folks to help! this was the result – one of my favorite clips!

 


Tic Tac Glow

gamerOne of the games my daughter has learned from her Grandfather is Tic Tac Toe. It’s a typical childhood game, and something that we generally grow out of….until we have children.

I found this game in the Amazon App store and downloaded it immediately. it’s still the typical old Tic Tac Toe, but with a slick look and cool neon graphics. You can play against the computer or another person and the difficulty can be set at different levels, along with different size grids, not just the three square by three square we’re used to.

If you have a child in your life, they will love this game. Give it a try, it’s a free download at the app store….and don’t forget, new Violent Blue is up!


Not exactly a convention…

This weekend I took the girls with me to Akron’s Geekfest at the summit county library. I already took time in Violent Blue to expound on how much I hate the name of this event (to the extent that I didn’t even bother with it last year) so we won’t go into that her. we’ll just suffice it to say I won’t use the title again.

10494568_802525469791878_6670581575918017086_nLydia was excited to go and up just after me in the morning jumping into her costume. I tried to explain to her that we weren’t leaving for a couple of hours but she still wanted to get dressed right away. Maddie gets moving slower in the morning, but once morning cartoons were over and we found her green tights it was off to the races.

This was the first time I’ve been out with the girls in my Voltron costume. I had hoped it would actually make things easier on me. they usually help by being my hands when I have none. They were in fact, BIG helpers with getting the armor on, but the costume actually made it a little harder for me to keep up. We parked across the street and each girl carried on of my legs so I could cross more quickly. As soon as we walked in we were mobbed, taking three photos before even getting past the desk!

The girls loved the minion bowling alley set up. This was a great idea, with painted two liter bottles set up as bowling pins and mini dodgeballs to roll at them.
We headed into the craft room where Lydia had a hard time figuring out what to make. At first it was going to be a pet, then a crown, then a banner. Maddie just decided on a Supergirl button. A tale was set up with old comics that kids could cut up and select the picture they wanted from them. Lyds got a little frustrated when she couldn’t find a Wonder Woman picture (later a librarian would find one and actually sought her out during the costume contest to give it to her!)

10538552_802706136440478_1462327137292067926_nWe caught a bit of the band which was a fun quirky pair of girls doing pop culture music. They ended with a song about wishing they could be friends with a the girls in cartoons. One announced that everyone needs to clap along. So I did. I put up the voltron lion heads and clapped along in the same pattern they were clapping on stage. I saw her trying hard not to laugh – and failing.

This event was very cosplay friendly. The number of people in costumes was comparable to any anime convention. Lydia said her favorite was a Meridia from Brave. The girls entered the costume parade but I actually enrolled in the costume contest – at their insistence.

I should have thought about those stairs. Stairs are my kryptonite.

At one point a Sith Witch came up on stage. Her staff was made of real bones and she was wonderfully creepy. Lydia ran up to me in 10462520_277924425742875_2639063874321142221_nline and declared “She’s going to win!”. What’s really funny is that she was right. The witch took first place!

We explored different parts of the library during the day. It’s huge and a marvelous facility. The girls played with Legos downstairs and made bracelets. They had a good day both at the events and at the non-events.

We ended the day trying to get back to the car when out on the side walk as I was taking off my legs a woman came rushing up to me with her mortified teenage daughter in tow.

“That’s my favorite cartoon ever! Can I take a picture with you?”

I ended up taking two more pics there on the sidewalk outside the library before making it across the street back to the car.

We had a great day here and will definitely be back next year. It’s a very family friendly event with a little bit of a con atmosphere, but with far fewer things that you actually have to spend money on. Maddie is already planning on being Star Sapphire next year and Lydia is talking about wanting a Harley Quinn outfit.

We’ll be back to Akron in a few months for Akron Comicon!

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The Adventures of Mr. Kidzpointe part seven

filmography

Part seven of The Adventures of Mr. Kidzpointe! By the way, that lighter he’s using? That’s a Tennant era Sonic Screwdriver.

And don’t forget, new Violent Blue tomorrow!


The Secret Garden

sg4As you like it isn’t the only play being preformed at the Oberlin Summer Theater festival this year, there’s also the family favorite “the Secret Garden” My wife remember this from High school, she read the book and has fond memories of the film (which we ended up watching wit h the girls after the play that very night).

The cast are adults, but they are able to play young. I don’t quite buy them as ten, but certainly 13 or so.

sg1These are excellent performances all around. My daughter mentioned than she actually liked the play better than the film. The sets are lush and gothic and beautiful. The home feels cold and hard and stone, not the warm woods and libraries of the film version. The set is VERY modular and I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many set changes on stage before. It works very well with the feeling of the house servants just doing thier jobs as them move pieces around.

The entrance to the garden itself is backlit, shining an eerie light whenever the door is opened. It’s a very cinematic effect, though a tad overused.  sg2

The back screen is used to great effect. When Lord Craven’t wife calls him back to the manor, all we ever see is her sillouette. When the little girl has a nightmare its created with swirling shapes and figures running around the back of the screen, shadows singing ring around the rosy as her parents die back in India.

All the heart and emotion of the story is here and it’s a great preformace to sg3take you kids too. Reserve your tickets though, the house we went to was packed. The Secret Garden is still running in Oberlin until the beginning of August, so get there while you can!

Check out the trailer for the play below and call them today for your tickets!


Oberlin Summer Theater Festival

IMG_7563Every year I make an effort to come out to the summer theater fest in Oberlin, and Paul Mosier’s stock theater never fails to entertain.

The Shakespere  feature this year was as you like it. It’s not one of my favorite plays, but they always put together a fine interpretation, no matter what the play. This year is no exception. The play is set in a dystopian future (interestingly enough, it’s not the first time I’ve seen it done this way). The set was simple colums with triangle patterns. it serves to give a nice seventies sci-fi feel to it, and still gives the proper impression when the characters in the IMG_7453forest. Teh flat grays on the costumes  help push the sci-fi element, as well as teh evil Duke’s apearances on the large video screen ( the only time we ever see this character).

As we open, we see our hero Orlando preparing for a fight, and before we know it he’s in the middle of a wrestling match. The battle here is extremely well done. Orlando flips and jumps and fights in possibly the best choreographed fight I’ve ever seen in a play. It was exciting and kinetic. The guys who put on the Spider-Man musical could learn a thing or two from these guys!

IMG_4248Afterwards, Orlando flees to the forest, and at the same time his lady love Rosaland is also heading to Arden where we will spend almost the entirety of the second act.

They play the woods very much as the country. I can get past the cowboy hats and overalls, but I have to admit it’s a little unsettling to hear Shakespeare done in these strange southern accents.

I’m fairly certain The Bard never intended one of his plays to end in a square dance.

The real surprise about this part was the music. The deposed and banished duke lives in the forest with his followers who they describe as living like Robin Hood. in fact, they come off more like hippies, wandering the forest playing folk music. The three piece acoustic band consisted of a guitar, a violin and a bass, which blended perfectly. There was a surprising amount of singing here, and it just fit the setting IMG_4469ideally.

There’s plenty of broad comedy here to augment the subtleties of Shakespeare’s story. Among the hippies in the forest is a lone melancholy beatnick whose antics are balanced against the relatively straight performances of the other foresters. A court jester accompanies Rosaland and his antics are just as fun to watch, particularly during the first act back at court.

The play still runs until the begining of August, so head out and catch this while you still can!

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Glow posters

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Last year, my Church attempted something different. Instead of a full blown VBS in the summer we went with what we called a “Kids Revival” In the fall, a way to wrap up the “Heros of the Bible” series we had been doing in Sunday School. To go with the superhero theme and drama series, I created these three “movie posters” to advertise it!

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And don’t forget, new Violent Blue tomorrow!


Under the Rainbow

forgotten bannerMV5BMTgyMDIyMzI2MV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNTgxMTk5__V1_SY222_SX144_I fist discover “Under the Rainbow” because part of it deals with the creation of the Wizard of Oz with Judy Garland.

From IMDB:

Under the Rainbow 1981 In World War II era Los Angeles, the manager of the Culver Hotel leaves his nephew in charge for a weekend. The nephew changes the name to the Hotel Rainbow and overbooks with royalty, assassins, secret agents, Japanese tourists, and munchkins (from the cast of _Wizard of Oz, The (1939)_ ). Secret Service agent Bruce Thorpe and casting director Annie Clark find romance amidst the intrigue and confusion.

This is an interesting film in that it’s got some infamy amongst those that know about it  mostly because Carrie fisher undresses – not down to much, underwear that covers more than most bathing suits actually.  Much like Corvette Summer, it’s kind of a  “What they did next” movie.  Fisher is ably paired up with Chevy Chase and a fairly well thought out script. It’s a farce with a great deal of “misunderstandings” creating the humor. I really should have enjoyed this more, it seems custom made for me. Perhaps I was just disspaointed that it didn’t have a closer relationship to OZ (as I had assumed) or it’s just my indifference to Fisher, but this never really clicked for me. Check it out if it shows up on netflix, otherwise it may not really be worth seeking out.

 


Fright Night 2 : New Blood

Movie bannerindex

I’ve always made a point to state that  I don’t hate remakes just for the sake of hating remakes. I was reasonably positive about Fright Night three years ago here : https://argocitycomics.wordpress.com/2011/08/12/fright-night-sneak-preview/. This time not so much.

First and foremost, let’s get this out of the way. Just because it has “2” in the title, that means nothing. This is not a follow up. It’s a remake. You don’t get to remake a film two years after the last remake! It’s not even a BETTER remake. I think I would have liked this a great deal more if it had been a sequel. It’s DTV horror. It didn’t NEED to have the same actors and it isn’t too much of a leap to make this a follow up. Evil Ed is better realized here, but that’s it. Amy is completely wasted here. She’s always been a damsel in distress, but she was practical in the original. She imageswas stronger in the remake. Here’s she’s just a walking prop. Vincent simply isn’t interesting here…in fact he far less likable than in the 2011 remake and again, he doesn’t actually appear until around the halfway point.

One of my real pet peeves is taking a remake in name only. They use the names and maybe some subject matter, but tell a story that not only has nothing to do with the original but doesn’t even feel like the original (A big reason I never liked the Battlestar Galactica reboot). Again, it wouldn’t have taken much script doctoring to make this a sequel. Simple replace Ed with images3someone else or find a way to humanize him again. State that Vincent has a new career doing reality TV and he pulled some strings to get Charlie and company in on this trip. The Bathory angle would have fit much better like that – especially if Geri Dandridge was somehow related to Jerry Dandridge.

It’s frustrating because this does have some good set pieces, and frankly some brilliant uses of the cross to ward off Vampires. My favorite is a tie between the picture on the cell phone or the full chest tattoo on Peter images2Vincent. The ocular damage scene is nicely squirm worthy as well and the sonic location is a surprisingly original touch. But all of it simply isn’t sufficient to make this a good film, and the “2” in the title just pisses me off.

If you see it on netflix and need something to watch as background at a party or while you are cleaning the house or something it’ll work, but don’t go out of your way to rent it and definatley don’t buy it.

 


Thank you Beth Brodrick

Autographs

Another in my Sabrina collection. Really, if I could just get Nick Barcay and Caroline Rhea I’d be all set! I sent her the blue picture but she was also nice enough to include a cute new glossy with her in white!

beth1 beth2


Punk

best

Punk 93Maybe it’s just because I’m a product of  the period that this was written in, but I find Punk to be absolutely hilarious.  He’s a cyborg (but hides it well) whit an attitude who likes hitting the bars, getting into fights and does merc work for money. It’s ultra violent humor with a very 90’s flavor to it – Skater cut, flannel, shorts and combat boots, ministry and NIN T-Shirts, mosh pits. A great example of the humor here is Punk going and taking down a cyber-jacked Ogre who has been bullying a group of hermits and accepts a pair of bunny slippers as payment.

I’ve only ever seen this thing ONCE. It was an indie comic with a low run, but it’s available for purchase online. You can also find the creators Sean Campos and Mark Finn on Facebook.


AllAmeriCON 5

Conman AllAmericon seems very much to be a show in transition.

I don’t know that I would have liked it in the past. From what I’ve heard, it was a much smaller show, and really just one of those “conventions” that served as a comic related bazaar. I’ve criticized this in the past with other shows stating how easy it would be to add a couple of guests, a panel or something to make it into something more.

AllAmericon 5 is attempting to do just that. This year, they shelled out some cash to get Jim Steranko as a guest – a big name if there ever was one. They also slated Daryl Banks, the co-Creator of the Kyle Rayner Green Lantern and a Cleveland mainstay, not to mention great guy.  In addition, they brought in Knightmage – a well respected member of the cosplay 1community to bring a greater cosplay element in with a panel and a costume contest. I brought my Voltron costume to debut here, but the day started before I even hit the venue. About 20 miles out, an orange blur barreled down on me and I recognized My friend Riley’s Batwag following my little red Superman Honda.  We waved at the stop light and occasionally one of my lion heads would peek out of my sunroof and make faces at them. Mage saw me as soon as I walked in and just shook his head at my costume. “You’re my hero man.” The admission table told me “We usually stamp people’s hands, but somehow I think we’ll know you’re part of the show.”

I hung out a bit but couldn’t do any shopping because of my lion hands. That was fine I was planning on changing out of the costume after the contest. At 11:00 most of the contestants hadn’t made it in yet and there weren’t a lot of people dressed up yet. I saw the line for Steranko’s table streached across the wall. We swung by several tables including Pixel Bits which I have seen before, most recently at Lake Effect Comic con where my Lydia bought a wonder woman design from them.

The Cosplay panel was fine. There was a heavy emphasis on cosplaying for charity which is a little bit of a departure from the 10516677_792021444175614_5837922122639202488_ncosplay panels I see at Anime cons. However it’s not surprising seeing as this is a big part of what Knightmage and Riley do.

I got back on the floor and saw a really nice Iron Man costume – comic accurate, lit up, really well done. I was heading over there to get a picture but he saw me coming and was really excited to see Voltron. Apparently he’d been following my progress on Ohio Cosplayers. “I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to see this in front of me!”. The photos of Iron Man and Voltron are some of my favorites from the day.

About forty five minuets before the costume contest my chestplate broke. The velcro held just fine – in fact it was stronger than the glue holding it to the foam! the strip ripped right off. Pulling it out, the crest in my chest began to come loose as well, however that was an easy matter. Push it back in  and it would hold. The chest plate however, was another matter. Fortunately, I had a hot glue gun in my car with an AC adapter in my lighter. In about fifteen minuets I was back in the con, hoping the quick and dirty fix would hold for at least another hour and get me through the contest.

The costume contest was really nice, but in the uncomfortable costume it felt a little long. During the course of the day, a lot of really great costumes had filtered into the convention hall as I knew they would and I wasn’t so confidant of my ability to place. Indeed, a young woman in a beautifully hand crafted Mad Hatter-like getup took first place, and she definately deserved the win. I was pleased to get second, narrowly beating out a Catwoman I had seen a year or two ago over at Akron Comicon.

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New_100_5936Finally out of the costume contest, I hastily wiped off my makeup and shuffled out of the costume then headed for Steranko’s table. There was no line this late in the day and I was a little concerned he may have packed up, but no, he was still there and now it was no waiting!

I asked for a Shadow print and pointed to the one I wanted. Jim told me “I’ve been saving this one all day just for you!”, then signed it for me, but declined to take a photo “I’d prefer not to, but we’ll always have this moment!”

He wasn’t rude or unreasonable, but he does seem to have a “convention personality”. Very much a sell sell sell  feel. Nevertheless, I can forgive it. He really is a comic legend, and I’m going to treasure my personalized signed print of one of my favorite characters.

This convention has great potential, and they really are trying to become something bigger, something better. Not as big as say Wizard World or SDCC, but I think they are certainly trying to grow into the kind of show Akron is and I’m interested in seeing how they grow. I may not be back next year, but I think I certainly will be back in the future

A side note, it appears I made the news in my costume. http://wkbn.com/2014/07/06/big-day-for-comic-enthusiasts/

New_100_5938It’s not a comicon without picking up a stack of books fro mteh quarter bins. I was particuarly pleased to find the Ambush Bug issue!

New_100_5935Glimmer is one of the few figures from the new MOTU line I really wanted, mostly for my girls who play with the She-Ra figures all the time. I won a gift certificate in the costume contest, and sunk the entire thing into getting this figure for us.

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Deadshot is one of my all time favorite characters in comics. From the first mini-series which led me into Suicide Squad, I was hooked. It was so exciting to see a Deadshot cosplay here – and a good one at that, very firmly based in the Justice League cartoon.

1937864_10203293968722961_1284252535_n 10419867_10203293982243299_501799063_n 10510112_10203293972403053_1756282173_n 10524756_10203293952122546_663305015_n 10531314_10203293947882440_1685558565_n 10529555_10203293959882740_152409505_n

Costume Contest. And just in case you were wondering what it looked like back stage lining up for the contest….

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We did have a huge turn out for that contest, they managed to pack that little lecture hall.

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The convention floor10500345_792021614175597_4877249328790688390_n 10464379_10201275928259718_251614713977521835_n 10440955_767927623249868_5890731029710684102_n 10348187_10202848063256799_3088599051874179991_n

 

 

 

 


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Happy Independance Day!

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All Americon 5

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Will be heading out to this on Sunday. I know NOTHING about this convention and have NO idea what it will be like. I going for two reasons only : Jim Sternoko and a chance to debut my new Voltron costume. If you see me, grab me and say hi!
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But that’s Sunday. For now, I’ve got to go whip up something for Tomorrow’s Independence Day Violent Blue .


Lyds and Carmel

art showBanner

Last month it was Maddie drawing one of her friends. This month Lydia presents her favorite friend…her and her kitty Carmel.

art  Lydia peoplr


The Iron Man project part seven

 

Iron Man

Before we get into the metal bikini bottoms lets take a quick moment to to the upper arms. This is another soda bottle and some foam.

100_3955We wrap the foam around the bottle and voila! arms done.

100_3954Next metal underwear. This is two pieces, the back with the foam g-string, and the front brace that glues to the back in two places, a seam at each hip, and some metal bling scavenged from an old hard drive.

100_3976 100_3977This would really look better wit ha coat of red paint, don’t you think?

100_3978In fact, while we’re at it, let’s just paint up everything that we’ve made so far…..

100_3958 100_3956I’m actually quite happy with it so far.

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With the briefs done, it’s time for the mid section. I’m envisioning it kind of like the middle of a storm troopers outift.  We’ll see  how that works out next month!