Monday, September 30, 2013

Bechtloff's Book of Genesis: Rocket Knight Adventures.

This has got to be one of the greatest games on the Genesis and easily the most underrated game on it. This game takes place in a medieval style world full of steam punk style technology and anthropromophic animal races and you play as Sparkster, an opossum knight with a rocket pack and a sword that shoots and energy blast and you fight evil pigs.

Sparkster is an interesting character and is wonderfully animated giving him a ton of personality in this game. The controls of your rocket can take some real getting used to, but once you do it's a lot of fun. My biggest complaint is when you shoot up in the air with your rocket as soon as it runs out you fall straight down with no ability to steer your decent. That is pretty annoying and runs counter to what I'm used to from most platformers. 

This game was colorful, fun, challenging, and had an awesome memorable protagonist. Seriously, it's a damn shame more wasn't done with Sparkster, there were a few sequels, but there should have been more. And hell, give this guy a cartoon while we're at it. Pac Man had a cartoon for Heaven's sake, surely this guy could get one. I haven't played any of the sequels, one was on the Genesis, one on the SNES, and another came out recently as a downloadable game on the Xbox I think. I'll probably check the first two out, but much as I'm interested in the recent one, I absolutely hate not having a hard copy. But getting back to this game, if you have an Genesis or an emulator you need to check this out, because this is easily one of the best games of the 16 bit era.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Marvel Nemesis: The Imperfects #1

Hey remember that shitty Marvel fighting/beat 'em up game EA made a few years ago? Odds are you answered somewhere along the lines of "Kinda". Well it sucked, but did you know it had a comic based on it? That's right, none of the awesome Capcom Marvel fighting games had comics based on them, but this dumpster fire did. No X-men vs Street Fighter comic, no Marvel vs Capcom comic (although now that I think about it, the hardest part of writing an MvC comic would be to establish a "Capcom universe", I mean that would be a universe with Street Fighter, Darkstalkers, Resident Evil, and Mega Man all going on in the same world.). Anyways we got none of that, but somehow this failure of a game needed a failure of a comic to go with it. Six issues no less. Let's dive right into the sadness that is issue one.

So what's the story here? Well there's some bald alien dude who is trying to make different species stronger by injected some glowing green shit into them. Meanwhile on Earth Elektra is trying to kill Wolverine for some reason when they're both abducted by aliens. Also Thing and Spider-man are abducted. They get injected with the magic green shit making them "perfect" as the alien says. And by that he apparently means angry glowy green rage zombies.
Sorry for the poor scan, my scanner is a touch small for a two page spread. Normally I would scan the pages individually and put them together, but I refuse to put more effort into the scan than the artist apparently put into drawing it. This comic had sloppy, dark unpleasant art, the writing was boring and uninteresting, with only a shallow at best understanding of the characters. Overall it was just a mess, which in a way makes it a damn good adaptation of the game. This perfectly captures in comic book form the bad taste in your mouth the game leaves you with, so in that regard this comic is truly "perfect".

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Review(s) of the Week: Batman/Superman #3.1 (Doomsday #1) and Powerpuff Girls #1

I talked about Doomsday on here before, so I was curious what the New 52 Doomsday would be all about. This issue takes place in flashback with Supergirl, then a little girl on Krypton being told the story of how Doomsday attacked Kyrpton and how Superman's mom, along with Zod defeated it. Also Supergirl's dad reads her a prophecy about how Superman would be killed by Doomsday. And General Zod, who's trapped in the Phantom Zone at this point is somehow haunting Supergirl and threatening to kill her.

This issue was a big nothing and it really told me almost nothing about the villain it was supposed to be about. From what I gather Doomsday is pretty much the same, except with a much more over designed, kinda "Image Comics"-y look to him, but then that's the New 52 for you.
I was a huge fan of this show back when it was on. It was a loving parody of all things super hero and just wonderful all around family fun so I figured it would be worth getting. And it was actually pretty damn good. The story has the girls defeating Mojo Jojo for the umpteenth time which causes him to take a good long look at all his failures and by the end of the issue he asks Professor Utonium to create an Antidote X to take away his super genius so he would no longer be haunted by his failures.

This was a fun little nostalgic read, but I think I might wait for the trade before I read anymore. $3.99 for a book where half of it is ads is a bit much. Seriously the last 9 pages were ads.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Everything wrong with "dads" in one joke.

I'm certainly not the only one to say this but the new Seth MacFarlane show "dads" was absolutely terrible. But as I watched it the second time it aired on Friday it dawned on me that one of the lame ass jokes sort of summed up everything wrong with the show. In this scene Seth Green's dad is waiting for him in Seth's apartment and the maid is cleaning. The maid is essentially a live action Consuela from Family Guy. Anyways as she's dusting she sees a framed picture of the kid from that Cher movie Mask and asks the dad if it was a picture of him. Now there are several things wrong here, first of all the dad doesn't look like him at all. Not even a little. If we were ripping on Shaun White maybe that would have had a joke there. Also, why does Seth Green's character have a picture of the kid from Mask? It wasn't like he had a ton of movie memorabilia laying around. It wasn't like we established he was a huge fan of that movie, knew the actor, or even his video game company was or had made a game based on it (that might have been funny, a game based on Mask), no it was just an awkward out of place set up for a joke. And what was the pay off? A big nothing. A little smirk out of me and that was it. It's not like we went to great lengths to set up a great joke. That I can forgive. No it was a huge set up for almost no pay off. And that sums up what was wrong with this show.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The sexism of Pong.

As I watched a few more of Anita Sarkeesian's videos I started to think maybe she's right. Maybe video games are oppressing women. But I think she has overlooked one of gaming's earliest, and perhaps most insidious examples of misogynistic overtones, Pong.

Now some of you misogynistic radical right wingers who's minds are still stuck in that old boy's club mentality probably can't even see it. You naively imagine that Pong is merely a crude digital representation of tennis, but open your minds. You see those lines aren't paddles or tennis rackets, but rather they are obviously phallic symbols. And the dot is clearly a woman who has been so marginalized and disenfranchised by a culture of sexism it has stripped her of all identity rendering her just a little dot, a ball in this game played by men. Over and over again our oppressed victimized "Dot" tries to escape this torment, only to find her path blocked by a large white obelisk (I suspect there is a racist component to this as well which we will explore another time). The phallus then violently deflects her, no doubt sexually assaulting her in the process, and forces her to careen towards the other player who continues this cycle of violence. Pong is nothing more than two men having a competition to see who can rape a woman the most.

I'll be launching a Kickstarter soon to explore this issue in greater detail. I hope you'll all donate.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Retro Review: Iron Man #55

Thanos is one of the best villains in comics. He is extremely bad ass and surprisingly complex and has long been one of my favorite villains, so when I found a reprint of his first appearance for $2.00 I figured I would take a look.

So in this issue Tony is telepathically contacted by Drax who has been captured by Thanos. He tells them the history of the Titans, as well as his and Thanos' origin and that Thanos has captured him and they're both on base hidden in a remote area on Earth. Drax also warns him that the Blood Brothers have been sent after him by Thanos. That warning came too late as they had already gotten the drop on him and are bringing him back to Thanos. Eventually Drax and Iron Man manage to defeat Thanos, which turns out to only be a robot copy, and they part ways.

A lot of people say Thanos is a copy of DC's Darkseid, and while Thanos did grow into being a much different, and I would say far more interesting character than Darkseid, it's pretty clear that he was meant to be a Darkseid clone at first.
I mean look at him, it's basically Darkseid with a little bit of yellow splashed on him. Also he has that same motivation of wanting to take everything over and be a cosmic dictator, a space Hitler if you will. Very little of the character we all know and love was really in this issue, in fact I thought the history of the Titans was the most interesting thing in this story. Far more compelling than the Thanos we see here or his convoluted plan to kidnap Iron Man for some reason.

Also of note, while the artwork was solid, the coloring was terrible. There were tons of mistakes, making it hard to even read at times. Granted I'm reading a 1992 Marvel Milestone Edition Reprint, but it kept the coloring mistakes intact far as I know, hell it even reprinted many of the ads. In fact the two page ad for NBC's 1972 Saturday morning line up was almost the most interesting part of the whole book. Did you know there was a cartoon called The Barkleys that was a talking dog version of All In The Family?
At least I guess that's what that is. I kinda wanna watch that now. I'm sure it's a piece of shit, but I am curious. As for the issue itself, it truly is only worth reading because it's a piece of comic book history, not because it's a good read or anything. Despite being a huge Thanos fan, it was a little hard to slog through. So unless you're curious, I wouldn't even bother grabbing the cheap reprint, let alone splurge on the extremely expensive original.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Review(s) of the Week: Green Lantern #23.3 (Black Hand #1) and Mega Man #29

Geoff Jones' Green Lantern run was legendary. It made the Green Lantern franchise a big deal again and took a z-list villain in the form of Black Hand and made him one of the coolest villains DC has. I'm glad to see he has survived the New 52 plague with little to no change.

This issue has Black Hand being resurrected by a Black Lantern Ring and wondering through the city as it's engulfed in riots due to the events of Forever Evil #1 raising up dead people as zombies. He finally makes it to a cemetery where he raises Hal's father and just chats with him a bit about Hal. The zombies can't talk but Black Hand seems to hear them anyways, whether he really hears them or it's in his head is unclear. The issue ends with him telling Hal's father he'll get him "something to eat" as we pan out to see he has raised all the corpses in the cemetery.

This issue was good, but not great. Black Hand didn't seem as complex as he often was in many of Jones' issues. Part of this was due to Hand's foggy memory I suppose, but still it felt like just trying to recapture the magic of that Blackest Night prelude issue that retold Hand's origin. As with most of the good stuff in the New 52 this would have worked fine, if not even better in the pre-Flashpoint continuity. Damn I miss that continuity.

So in this issue Mega Man wakes up in one of Dr. Light's labs after having been shut down last issue by Ra Moon's EMP. Dr. Light has come up with a coating that will protect Mega Man, Rush, and a few other Robot Masters and sends them after Ra Moon. Meanwhile Break Man AKA Proto Man teleports back only to find Dr. Wily hiding from Ra Moon in a corner of their base. Wily isn't sure if Ra Moon just considers Wily beneath his notice or is toying with him but he's working on a weapon he thinks can take Ra Moon down and he asks Proto Man to be his body guard while he finishes it. Our issue ends with Mega Man and his team taking on some of the Robot Masters under Ra Moon's control.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. If you're not reading this you're wrong. This is not only the best all ages book on the shelves today, but probably the best all ages book of the last decade. So what are you waiting for, go read this book.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Top 10 Evil Double Villains

One of the most enduring villain archetypes is the dark reflection. So it obviously tends to pop up over and over again in popular fiction. So here are my top ten. As with most of my lists here are my ten favorite. Not necessarily the most important ever, just the ten I like the most.
10) Wario and Waluigi. Little is known about the evil doubles of Mario and Luigi. Wario is a greedy little shit who wants to collect all the gold he possibly can. Even less is known about Waluigi other than his affinity for gokarting and tennis. But for reasons unknown these two continue to troll the ever loving hell out of the Mario brothers.

9) Rival. One of comics earliest "dark reflection" characters this dark version of the golden age Flash is sadly only notable pretty much for being one of the first of his kind. Still, I thought he was well used in the JSA series of the early 2000's and I always liked the look of him, so I thought I'd include him.

8) Doctor Octopus. What's that you say? This isn't an evil Spider-man? Oh, come on, it's a guy who takes on the mantle of an eight limbed animal after a lab accident. I know, that's a bit of a stretch, but Doc Ock isn't so much a dark reflection of Spider-man as he is of Peter Parker. He's the nerdy scientist, he was mocked by his peers. He is the bitter guy full of nerd rage that Peter could have become. And isn't being the dark thing the hero could have been at the heart of the dark reflection concept?

7)Metal Sonic. It takes a special kind of hatred to build a robot double of someone just to kill them, but that's just what Dr. Robtonik did. I always loved Metal Sonic in the Sonic games. I found myself wishing they would have made a Metal Tails and Metal Knuckles. They have in the Archie Sonic comic, but to the best of my knowledge, never in the games.
6) The U-Foes. Evil versions of the Fantastic Four who, oddly enough, rarely ever fight the FF. They tend to fight the Hulk more than anyone else. Simon Utrecht sought to purposefully recreate the accident that gave the Fantastic Four their powers and actually succeeded. But, unlike most of the evil doubles on this list, they had no real beef with the FF and rarely fight them. That's a rather interesting twist on the dark reflection archetype.
5) Bizarro. Kinda hard to due this list and not include the villain who's name is synonyms with the concept. There have been many versions of this character, but I prefer the degenerate clone version I fist saw in the 90's Superman cartoon. "Me save Loois!"
4) Dark Link. First seen at the end of Legend Of Zelda II, this douchebag has been a thorn in the side of many a gamer. I know if not for magic spells like Din's fire I'd never get past him. Dark Link seems to be just a magical construct and likely doesn't even have any real sentience. Still a massive pain in my Nintendo playing ass though.
3) Reverse Flash. Both Barry Allen and Wally West have had their own versions of Reverse Flashes, and both have been compelling characters with interesting personal stakes against the characters. The design is a flipped color scheme, but it works really well, almost could work at it's own design. The New 52 Reverse Flash is a raging dumpster fire, but then that's the New 52 for ya.
2) Venom. I remember watching the 90's Spider-man cartoon during the Venom episodes and genuinely wondering how Spidey would handle this. I mean he knew who Spidey was, he could just kill him in his sleep. Venom ended up being more popular than Spidey and had consecutive minis (basically forming an ongoing) running through half of the 90's. It's hard not to love the V-man.

1) The Crime Syndicate of Amerika. This should come as no surprise to any regular reader of this blog. I've talked about these guys over and over. I just freaking love them. And thankfully their New 52 versions aren't terrible (so far).

So there you have it, my ten favorite evil double villains. Don't like it? Well then, as always, make your own damn list. Bechtloff out my friends.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Geekdom and the new left wing "Moral Majority"

This is going to be something of a long and meandering train of thought, but I hope you'll stay with me as I really feel this needs said. Let me start with a simple statement; Anita Sarkeesian is scum. Now that's obvious to anyone with a shred of intellectual honesty, so I know a lot of you are saying "C'mon Bechtloff, isn't she a bit of an easy target?" Well, yes, but that still doesn't mean she shouldn't be shot down. A lot of people already rip her nonsense apart all over the place, but frankly not enough people can ever do it. Because if us geeks aren't careful, game companies, comic book companies, etc will actually listen to her and those like her. Because while many people rip into her, the fact remains that she does have allies.
And of course the pair of them have Linkara filling the classic roll of a distant Beta Orbiter. Now, let's take a moment to go on a bit of a tangent. I said this would be meandering so please follow along. A couple of months ago a friend started a general nerdery podcast called Getting Gibbed which I and another friend took part. We got three episodes up, but as of right now it seems to be on indefinite hiatus as the orchestrator Nick seems to have lost interest in the project for reasons I don't comprehend. Anyways, on the second episode we talked about old Anita and her nonsense and it ended up being a weak segment despite being such a fertile topic as fellow host Chace just sorta sat there quiet leaving Nick and I to fill his gap so to speak. It's not that he didn't have things to say about Anita, I've heard him rip into her in private. So why so quiet? Well, Chace is not a confrontational guy and he doesn't like upsetting people. But also I think, either consciously or subconsciously, he knew something about geek culture these days, that there is a pretty vicious liberal mafia running through it and daring to not swallow the blue pill can get you some nasty retaliation. Theodore Beale AKA Vox Day was run out of the SFWA for his conservative/libertarian beliefs, Orson Scott Card was finally run off Adventures of Superman due to pressure from gay groups, the list goes on and on.

OK now, second tangent. I'm old enough and have been a politics junkie for long enough to have noticed an interesting political phenomon first hand a couple of times. Every once in a while the left and right will just flip tactics and even positions on things, like a political magnetic reversal. One need only look at the the news right now to see an example of that as we currently have hawkish Democrats debating cautious Republicans over a potential war with Syria. And this liberal mafia in geekdom is an interesting example of that. I remember when it was those on the right, particularly the religious right, who always wanted to censor entertainment. They were the ones, not content with simply changing the channel or not going to that movie etc, who had to silence the things they did not approve of. They had to boycott, they had to picket and protest, even try to get the government to go after the things they deemed "obscene". Now it's the left who screams "This is sexist, that is racist, this is homophobic, that's too violent, etc" at everything. Obviously they have a slightly different metric for what is and is not acceptable than Jerry Falwell and his Moral Majority had, but they will attack anything that doesn't fit their standards with an equal, if not greater and more vicious, furry.

Alright, let's bring these different threads together here. What is my point with all this? If you're a geek, be it comics, video games, anime, science fiction, fantasy, whatever, and you are a libertarian, a conservative, or anything other than a blue pill swallowing leftard, they will attack you. Viciously. So you better wake up and start attacking back, because if you're not careful, like the Borg they will assimilate the thing you love and make it suck. Think about it, would you really want to buy a video game Anita wrote the story for? Of course not. It would suck. Don't think you can appease these leftoids, you have to stand up to them. As Picard said We've made too many compromises already; too many retreats. They invade our space and we fall back. They assimilate entire worlds and we fall back. Not again. The line must be drawn here! This far, no further! So please, speak up. Write on Facebook or twitter, or on blogs, or videos on Youtube. Oh, you'll catch shit for it, trust me. Lord knows I have, and I'm still pretty small time (for now *maniacal laugh*). But until people find themselves more concerned with speaking the truth as best as they know it than they are with the possibility that someone might get offended, the future will continue to look bleak. Not just for geekdom, but civilization in general.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Happy Patriot Day!

Did you know that the anniversary of 9-11 is called Patriot Day? In honor of this momentous day I thought a little tribute was in order. So let's all sing along to Lee Greenwood's song, Proud to be an American.

If tomorrow all the things were gone
I’d worked for all my life
And I had to start again
with just my children and my wife

I’d thank my lucky stars
to be livin here today
‘ Cause the flag still stands for freedom
and they can’t take that away
And I’m proud to be an American
where at least I know I’m free
And I wont forget the men who died
who gave that right to me

And I gladly stand up...
...next to you and defend her still today
‘ Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land
God bless the USA
From the lakes of Minnesota
to the hills of Tennessee
Across the plains of Texas
From sea to shining sea

From Detroit...
...down to Houston and New York...
...to L.A.
Well there's pride in every American heart
and its time we stand and say
That I’m proud to be an American
where at least I know I’m free
And I wont forget the men who died
who gave that right to me
And I gladly stand up
next to you and defend her still today
‘ Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land
God bless the USA
And I’m proud to be and American
where at least I know I’m free
And I wont forget the men who died
who gave that right to me
  And I gladly stand up
next to you and defend her still today
‘ Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land
God bless the USA 

Review of the Week: Detective Comics Vol 2 #23.2 (Harley Quinn #1)

One of the biggest casulties of the New 52 was Harley Quinn. Oh she's still here, but only in a way that really misses the point of the character. So this issue spotlighting her spins off from the events of Forever Evil #1 with Harley leaving that villain meeting held by the Crime Syndicate to go bomb around in Gotham for a while. Literally. Most of this issue however shows her recounting her origin. Only in New 52 Joker is almost incidental to it. She still was a doctor at Arkham, but she assumed the Harley Quinn identity to pose as an inmate to try and reach her super villain patients more. After a fling with the Joker which opened her eyes to how chaos is awesome, or something, she became a real villain. Also we see how she assembled that hideous outfit of hers, and it turns out part of it she stole from a hooker. Makes sense.

So whereas once Harley Quinn was a cautionary tale of the dark rabbit hole that chasing after a degenerate bad boy can lead a girl, now it was the love of her work and not a man that really drove her to this. Fuck, did Anita Sarkeesian write this or something?

I miss when DC didn't suck a bag of dicks, I really do.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Wrong move Hill-Dawg.

Hillary issued a statement today, pretty much for the war in Syria, even if it was a little half hearted. You know, I've never thought she was as good of a political player as everyone seems to think and this sort of demonstrates why. If she wanted to have a strong chance of even getting her party's nomination for President, let alone actually winning the office, she should have came out strongly against this Syria war. This war is about as popular as Miley Cyrus' dancing at this point so why come out for it? Mind you, I certainly don't want to see her as our next president, but from a purely political gamesmanship standpoint it would have been the right move. But I guess that would only be if she actually wanted to appeal to voters, and not just military contractors and the Israel lobby.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Bechtloff Movie Night: Riddick (2013)

Confession time here people, I've never actually seen the other two Riddick movies. Yeah, I know, that's almost grounds to have to turn in my nerd card. When the first one came out I didn't care for Vin Diesel as all I knew him from that that shitty Fast and the Furious movie, and then when the second came out and I had changed my tune on Vin but I was meaning to see the first one first and then just never got around to it. A friend who saw this told me I could probably watch it as a stand alone movie so I figured I'd give it a shot, as there isn't much else to see right now.

The story has Riddick left for dead on a harsh alien world. We get a bit of a flashback to how he went from leading the Necromongers to being stuck here, then we get several scenes of him surviving on this harsh world, even making a pet of an alien wolf like creature. Eventually he finds an abandoned base and sets off the emergency beacon knowing people would come after him as there was no doubt a bounty on him which would allow him to get his hands on a ship to leave this world. Two ships show up and he picks a few of them off one by one before allowing himself to be captured as a massive rain storm is coming and a certain type of deadly creature hunts in the rain. Diesel works with the remaining survivors to fight the creatures and get off this world.

This was a pretty solid movie. Not great but pretty good. It definitely got me interested enough in the character of Riddick that I will probably go out and buy the other two. I found the scenes of him surviving on the world really compelling but once the bounty hunters showed up it got to be a little formulaic and boring. I also didn't like how the one Christian character was portrayed as a weak little coward. Further evidence that modern Hollywood has no idea how to write men of faith anymore. I'm told this is by far the weakest in the series and I believe it as it's pretty much only Vin Diesel's performance and the strength of Riddick as a character that at all holds this movie up. Fans of the series might be disappointed as this is not the sequel they've waited all this time for, but given that Diesel had to put up his own money to even make this happen that's understandable. As for a noob to the franchise, I still found it to be at least an enjoyable popcorn flick.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Retro Review: Uncanny X-men #346

I mentioned before that there weren't all that many Spider-man/X-men team up stories over the years, certainly not as many as you might think given how huge they both were, especially in the crossover happy 90's. I found this very odd when I was first getting into comics heavily in the mid to late 90's so when I saw this on the shelf I had to get it. I expected a Spider-man/X-men team up and that's not what I got.

The story starts out with Peter Parker at the Bugle as Jameson is rambling on about some crap as he tends to do. They're talking about the upcoming anti-mutant legislation called Zero Tolerance. Then later in the issue Spider-man stops Marrow and some other Morlock girl from trying to kill Henry Gyrich as a protest of Zero Tolerance and then helps Marrow fight off some Sentinels. We have an interlude of Gambit on an alien because that's apparently where the X-men are in all this, and we have a cool interlude of Bastion threatening Jameson in which old J.J. shows some real stones and journalistic integrity.

Now this was by no means a bad issue, in fact it was actually pretty good. But what it's not is an X-men issue. As a kid I went into it expecting a Spider-man/X-men team up but to be fair the cover even says the X-men are missing so that was my young self's fault. I've always been more of a Spider-man fan so I enjoyed it, but I wonder what the X-men fans felt, suddenly Uncanny X-men is basically a lost issue of Amazing Spider-man. Sure it moved the X-men Zero Tolerance story along, but this probably should have been a tie in issue in a Spider-man series. This was the start of Marvel pushing Marrow in a big way for a while, even having her team up with the webhead a few more times. Spider-man fans should definitely check it out, but X-men fans might want to pass on this very not X-men issue of Uncanny X-men.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Review of the Week: Forever Evil #1

I've said before on here that I love the Crime Syndicate. So when I found out there was going to be a New 52 even featuring them, I was kinda worried to say the least. I mean the New 52 is a disaster and has wrecked some of DC's coolest characters, what would they do to the Syndicate?

Well the story of issue one is that someone is breaking all of the major villains out of the super prisons to assemble them as an army. That someone is revealed to be none other than the Crime Syndicate as they announce to the villains and the world via broadcast that the world is theirs now. The Syndicate consists of the the five core members as well as evil versions of Firestorm and the Atom. I think that evil female Atom has been hanging out with the Justice League posing as a good guy, but I might be wrong on that. Haven't read much recent Justice League.
OK, let's take a quick moment to talk about the character designs. Owlman's mask looks like shit. It's like a grey version of the Midnighter or something. Thankfully though that's the only real complaint. There are a few minor things I don't like, such as the shape of Ultraman's embalm or the fact that the evil Firestorm basically just looks like Black Lantern Firestorm. And one change I actually like, the barbs on Superwoman's lasso. All and all it could have been much worse. I mean Owlman could have looked like a gay leather bar daddy like Solomon Grundy or something.

To show the villains they mean business they bring out Nightwing who they have captured earlier this issue and unmask him live on TV. Our issue cuts to Luthor saying this is a job for Superman and wondering where he is.

I gotta say, I was pleasantly surprised. I mean this is the New 52, so they really could have butchered my favorite DC villains here. But so far so good. I give it a solid 4 goatees and daggers out of 5.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

What's on the radio: Same Love by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

I wanted to like Macklemore and his sidekick Ryan Lewis, I really did. Thrift Shop was a damn good song. But then they followed it up with yet another bouncing in the club song and now this boring piece of pandering drivel.

First, for the sake of full disclosure I should say, being a man of faith I believe homosexuality to be wrong. Not just different, but wrong. But I'm also a libertarian, so as long as you're not forcing me or my church to embrace it, I really don't care if you give gays marriage licences. It doesn't hurt me in the least, and I am a firm believer in equality under the law, so I say let them have it. But it's not the advocating gay marriage where this song loses me, it's this part.

If I was gay I would think hip-hop hates me
Have you read the YouTube comments lately?
"Man, that's gay" gets dropped on the daily
We've become so numb to what we're saying
Our culture founded from oppression
Yet we don't have acceptance for 'em
Call each other faggots
Behind the keys of a message board
A word rooted in hate
Yet our genre still ignores it
"Gay" is synonymous with the lesser

You know why I fell in love with rap back in the 90's despite being one of the whitest mother fuckers you could ever hope to meet? Rap had balls. Rap had huge chrome plated balls and it said whatever the hell it wanted and the whole world could lick those chrome plated balls if it didn't like it. Rap was N.W.A. saying "Fuck da police!", rap was Eminem telling both Tipper Gore and Lynne Cheney to shove it up their up tight old asses. Rap had some fucking balls. But not anymore. Jay-Z went from Big Pimpin' to telling Beyonce "Yes Dear", that about sums it up right there doesn't it? And now, rap's newest rising star is lecturing the genre about how it needs to be more sensitive. 
And as if this song trying to further neuter rap wasn't bad enough, this song is treated as though it were some sort of courageous stance on Macklemore's part. Oh wow, a guy in the entertainment industry took a pro-gay stance? What a brave brave soul. Think of how sore his back must be after having the entire entertainment industry establishment pat him on it. 

But you know what, I could forgive all that if this song wasn't so damn boring. This has none of the creativity of Thrift Shop, and not even any of the energy of Can't Hold Us. This is just a boring snooze fest of a song. The hook by Mary Lambert is the only semi interesting thing and that's just because her vocals stand out against Macklemore's flat rhymes. Hell, I'd rather listen to Lil Wayne than this, he might be borderline retarded, but at least he's still got a pair of nads on him.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

How about some adult swim time?

When I was a kid the neighborhood pool would do adult swim. No I'm not talking about Aqua Teen and Family Guy reruns, I mean 10 minutes at the start of every hour where all the kids under 15 had to get out of the pool. Naturally I used to hate that as a kid but now I see the beautiful wisdom in it.

Wouldn't it be great if more places would adopt similar policies? Imagine if restaurants had set times of set days where no one could bring their little brats. You could enjoy a nice quiet dinner with friends or even a lovely date without someone's ill behaved little monster screaming in your ear. And I think movie theaters absolutely must adopt a "No Child under 3" policy. I'm sorry, but if you bring a baby to the movies, you're a selfish asshole. Period. Don't give me that "I couldn't get a sitter" bullshit. People paid to hear the movie not your baby cry. Get a damn Netflix subscription.

The reality is it's not really the kids that are the real problem, it's the parents. First of all  they often don't discipline the kid so it runs wild, and second of all they're so damn self absorbed they think the world revolves around the fact that they managed to breed. I was at a Pizza Hut once and the bathroom was under renovation so it didn't have a changing table. So this white trash cow changed her baby's shitty diaper at the table. Even an animal knows not to shit where it eats. You couldn't take it outside? If there was any sense left in this culture the manager would have told her to leave and never return.

So since we have so many selfish asshole parents who have spawned out of control undisciplined monsters, let's have some time and places they can't be. So I propose 8-11 PM Friday and Saturday nights in basically any restaurant that has waiters/waitresses and at the movies no kids allowed all day Tuesday. How's that sound?