Jul 15 2016

ROGUE ONE: A Star Wars Story Trailer Hits All The Right Notes

So you may have heard about Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, the latest Star Wars movie. It comes out in December. Here’s the trailer. Prepare to feel nostalgic.

DaddyTips Featured Video

Am I right or am I right? They do a damn fine job of appealing to both us old folks (ahem) and the new generation of Star Wars fans. This particular video has both the “isn’t it cool that we’re making a new Star Wars movie?” and the actual trailer. The movie itself looks pretty good. I hope it is since I’ll wind up seeing it anyway.

Check out Star Wars stuff at Amazon.


Jul 11 2016

Calm The F Down About The Ghostbusters Reboot

Holy crap! Can everyone calm the f down about the Ghostbusters reboot?

English: The Ghostbusters ectomobile emergency...

English: The Ghostbusters ectomobile emergency vehicle. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Apparently not.

As far as I can tell, the insanity started as soon as the new movie was announced. Fans (and I use the term loosely; crazy people is probably more accurate) of the original 1984 film began to FREAK THE FUCK OUT because someone had the nerve to make a new movie featuring female ghostbusters. (Which, by the way, passes spell-check muster. I don’t whether to smile or weep.)

I’ve been irritated by the term “raping my childhood” since I first heard it, I think back when the first of Michael Bay’s “Transformers” flicks hit theaters. While I can’t say I loved (or even saw) all of Bay’s movies, I can say that I don’t believe in the idea that something new ruins the memory of something old. It’s called show business folks. Not show fun. Not “Preserve In Amber Some Nudnik’s Memory of a Movie.” Grow up. Seriously.

The answer to the question “why are they making a new Ghostbusters movie?” is simple — MONEY. That’s the reason almost all movies are made, certainly Hollywood blockbusters/tentpoles.

Leslie Jones, one of the stars of the new film, wrote a series of tweets taking the “haters” (another term I don’t like, but for more complicated reasons) to task, asking the sensible question, “what will you tell your daughter” when they ask about being a Ghostbuster for Halloween. I would add “what will you tell your son?” There is no reason for the kind of vituperative language being thrown around online, regardless of the subject matter, but ESPECIALLY when the subject is A FUCKING MOVIE.

Movies are important to me. Anyone who reads this site even casually will notice a lot of movie references, and I went a little crazy about The Avengers movie when it came out in 2012. (Was it really four years ago? Oy.) I went crazy in a good way; I was excited to see a movie featuring some of my favorite superheroes onscreen together. Back in 2012, that was a novelty rather than the norm. (Again — was it only four years ago? Yes. Yes it was.)

Had I not liked The Avengers, I don’t imagine I would have spent countless hours writing blog posts telling everyone how much I didn’t like it. I might complain to my friends, at least those who are still willing to discuss such things with me. But taking the time to type out blog posts, or worse, making a video to tell the world how and why I think Hollywood did something wrong? Please. I have other ways to spend my time.

Maybe that’s the problem. Maybe the people who are taking the Internet to “troll” (yet another term I’m not a fan of, although I like it more than “hater” because at least it has history), leaving comments on YouTube and other places, maybe these folks simply have too much time on their hands.

Really though, what I wish is that everyone would CALM DOWN. Take a deep, cleansing breath, and consider that perhaps this level of anger over a movie you haven’t seen (remember that this started way back when the film was first announced) is waaaay too intense. I’m not even getting into the whole “How dare they make a movie with female Ghostbusters” thing. That’s crazy too. But even before we get to that, can’t we just stop losing our effing minds over movies? And while we’re at it, maybe stop screaming at people online, typing things that we would never say in person? We don’t have to all get along. We can, however, be more civil.

Source: Leslie Jones slams sexist Ghostbusters haters: ‘What will you tell your daughter’? (EW.com)

Wanna watch the original movie? Guess what? You can! There’s this thing called Amazon, and they rent digital movies! They even sell DVDs! Crazy, right?


Apr 15 2016

Doctor Strange Trailer (And Some Thoughts on The Comics)

By the hoary hosts of Hoggoth, they actually did it. Here is the new Doctor Strange trailer.

Doctor Strange movie

Looks like fun, yeah? I’ll give you a few thoughts of my own; if you want a moment by moment Doctor Strange trailer breakdown check out this video at IGN.

(Note: Marvel/Comixology/Amazon is having a sale on Doctor Strange digital comics — 99 cents each. Check ’em out here.)

So. Doctor Strange. What’s his deal? He’s got magic powers, lots of nifty mystical items that he uses to protect Earth from inter-dimensional nasties, and… I don’t know, he’s cool. Not a traditional superhero like Iron Man, Spider-Man and the rest.

Splash page for the "Doctor Strange"...

Splash page for the “Doctor Strange” story in Strange Tales #110 (July 1963). Art by Steve Ditko. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On a personal note, the first “real” comic book I ever read was an issue of Doctor Strange. I’d been reading Richie Rich, Casper, Archie, that kind of stuff. One day my dad said, “It’s time for you to read some real comics,” and handed me a copy of Doctor Strange. My little boy mind was blown. The first thing I remember is how much smaller the lettering was. That was true for all “real” comics (read: Marvel and DC); Richie Rich, et al, were aimed at very young readers and had simpler dialogue and storylines… and larger lettering. The next thing I remember is the splash page. One big image, full of colorful details, with Doctor Strange himself looming large over it all. I think he was looking out of a window, but it’s possible he was sitting in a chair with stuff drawn around him. I’ve been looking for that issue for years and I think I’ve found it, although I can’t remember what number it is at the moment. I also don’t remember the story. But I do remember how I felt. It was basically my comic book Bar Mitzvah. No more little kid comics for me. Now I could read the good stuff.

And I did. I have a nice collection of books that I bought at the local candy store/newsstand, because you could buy comics there when I was a kid. (You still kind of can, it just isn’t as common.) I didn’t keep those comics in very good shape, which in some cases is a bummer — my Frank Miller and Klaus Janson Daredevils would be worth a few bucks, as would my copy of the original Wolverine mini-series (which you can get for less than six dollars via Comixology). But instead of bagging and boarding everything, I read the hell out of my comics, because they were awesome. (Those Daredevils in particular are probably my favorite comic books ever.)

Back to Doctor Strange. His book went in and out, and I didn’t buy it that often. It’s possible that the local candy store didn’t always have it in stock even when it was being published. In addition to not being a traditional superhero, I don’t think he was as popular as the big names. He did found one of my sneaky super teams, The Defenders. The original core group of Defenders was Doctor Strange, Namor the Sub-Mariner, and The Incredible Hulk, quickly followed by The Silver Surfer. Basically a bunch of really powerful dudes who don’t play well with others, hence the term “non-team”. Later Defenders mainstays included such popular characters as Hellcat, Gargoyle, and Nighthawk. Also Valkyrie. Never heard of them? Join the club. (Marvel is doing a Netflix series called The Defenders, which I’m sure will be fun but doesn’t have much, if anything, to do with The Defenders’ comic books.) The Defenders hung out at Doctor Strange’s Greenwich Village mansion, known as The Sanctum Santorum, while constantly making a point of telling readers that they were NOT a super-team like The Avengers. I liked those comics a lot. Something about the idea of a group of semi-outcasts and/or angry people and/or loners teaming up only when it suited them really appealed to me.

I also always dug the good Doctor on his own. His job, Sorcerer Supreme, was to defend Earth from mystical threats. Sometimes he gets help from other Marvel heroes, but usually he doesn’t, because he’s the only one who can do what needs to be done. This led to some wonderfully trippy artwork, first by the legendary Steve Ditko (written by the even more legendary Stan Lee) and later by lots of other people.

The thing that made me the happiest in the trailer was seeing Doctor Strange’s Astral Form. (When Tilda Swinton punches him and it looks like a ghost pops out of his body.) It works like this: Doc leaves his body behind, defenseless, and his spirit floats around and does stuff. He can travel faster this way, but he can’t touch anyone and most people can’t see him. (One notable exception, if memory serves, is The Hulk. Because comic books. UPDATE: I just read some Doctor Strange comics from the 80s, and in those stories Doc can allow people to see his astral form if he wants them to. Again, because comic books.) It’s something that for various reasons I always found fascinating, so to see them do it in a live action movie had me making little nerdy noises.

So there you go. The Doctor Strange trailer. Looks like Marvel might get it right again, taking a character that isn’t well-known and putting said character into a big-budget blockbuster movie that doesn’t suck. Here’s hoping.

Read some comics:


Feb 12 2016

Deadpool Good. Don’t Take The Kids.

You may have heard that there is a movie based on the comic book character known as Deadpool. I have seen it. It is good. It is not for children. Don’t take the kids. Leave the kids at home. Can we be more clear?

Deadpool Infographic - Douchebags and Heroes

That’s not to say the Deadpool movie isn’t childish. It’s totally childish, in the best way. (See this Nerdist review for more.) I’ve often said that video games should have an “IM” rating for “Immature” instead of “M” for “Mature”, because often “Mature” means dirty jokes and boobies. The Deadpool movie has both of those, but it also does a nice job of showing the darker side of the title character, showing that it would kind of suck to be Wade Wilson.

More importantly for ‘Pool fans (of which I am one), the movie hits a lot of things from the comic books from which DP spawned (including the whole “it would suck to be Wade Wilson” part). That’s something that a lot of the reviews I’ve been reading seem to forget, or perhaps the critics simply don’t know the source material. (“Use the Source, Luke.”) Deadpool doesn’t break the fourth wall because the filmmakers thought it would be “cute” or “subversive”, he does it because that’s how the character is written. He knows he’s in a comic book, therefore he knows he’s in a movie. It’s a fairly simple concept that has huge potential, some of which was realized in this movie.

Also worth mentioning is that the Deadpool movie is not excessively long. It’s under two hours, which these days feels like a gift. We all know I loved The Avengers movie, and that was a long flick. But there’s something to be said for leaving people wanting more instead of dragging on for too long.

Something else: can we get some love for Leslie Uggams? She makes a great Blind Al, and the filmmakers manage to work her into the movie seamlessly, which was a pleasant surprise. I’m a little annoyed that she isn’t getting more attention. Here’s a classic video of her from a long time ago when she messed up the lyrics to a song but kept going anyway. I like Leslie. Always have.

The entire cast is solid, but Ryan Reynolds and T.J. Miller are getting enough press. Let’s hear it for Leslie Uggams!

Bottom line: the Deadpool movie is fun, violent, and not for young kids. You could do worse for a Valentine’s Day date film, depending upon who your date is.

If you want to pick up a good Deadpool comic, this one, the start of a fantastic run by Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn, with art by Tony Moore (at least for awhile), is a good place to start: Deadpool Vol.1: Dead Presidents, currently available for only $3.99 on Comixology/Kindle, which is a freakin’ bargain. You can read the entire run via Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited, which I’ve gone on and on about and is still a great deal.

I leave you with this image. It has nothing to do with Deadpool, it is a public domain image of a comic book featuring characters that are unlikely to ever get any screen time at all. Although Magno & Davey does have a certain ring to it…

FourFavorites0801

FourFavorites0801 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Jul 09 2015

Oh My, It’s Comic Con Time

To borrow the words of the ever-wonderful George Takei: Oh my, it’s comic con time.

George Takei Oh My

What are we talking about? Why, the San Diego Comic-Con of course. It happens every year.

(Here’s a video of George saying “Oh My” in case you need to hear that. There’s never a bad time to hear George.)

Anyway, San Diego Comic-Con has been around for awhile, but in the past decade, it has become big news. Geekery, as we all know, is no longer a hidden pleasure for many. It’s become a billion-dollar business. Amazon recently introduced their Geek Boutique, which about as mainstream as it gets.

One could debate when this all started, the explosion of so-called geek culture into the real world. I’ve been a Geek Gold Card member for my entire life, but suddenly people actually want to know who the hell Ant-Man is. (If you are one of those people, just ask. I’m nice that way. For example, here’s the latest “Ant-Manmovie trailer, complete with a reference to The Avengers.)

The links below give you more information about the big event than I ever could, and not only because I won’t be there. I’ve actually never attended the San Diego Comic-Con, just the New York Comic Con. But there will be lots of announcements about nerdy stuff (or perhaps I should say formerly nerdy — is something still nerdy if it’s immensely popular?) like movies, TV shows, video games, and yes, even comic books.

Here’s how to follow io9’s coverage of Comic Con. (We like io9.) The Mary Sue is also a good source. For example, here’s Betty White as Wolverine.

And then there’s this, via Polygon.com. Watch it at your own risk.

 


Jun 21 2015

Sopranos for Fathers Day

Last year, HBO recommended an episode of The Sopranos for Fathers Day. It kinda makes sense, as long as you don’t watch it with your kids (depending on how old they are, of course).

The specific episode recommended by HBO is called “College” (Season One, Episode Five).

Sopranos on Father's Day

 

In it, Tony Soprano (played of course by the late and very great James Gandolfini) takes his daughter Meadow (Jamie-Lynn Sigler) on a trip to visit colleges. Since this is The Sopranos, Tony gets sidetracked by some unexpected business.

It’s an early episode of the show — it first aired on February 7, 1999, according to Wikipedia —  and is very good. (Sorry! Forgot to say “spoiler alert.”) It certainly deals with father-daughter issues in a unique way, as did the show as a whole. One of the many great things about The Sopranos was seeing Tony try to be a dad while also conducting his, ahem, legitimate business dealings.

If you want to double-down on Gandolfini for Fathers Day, you can also watch the film Enough Said, which stars Mr. Gandolfini and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. (Catherine Keener is also terrific in a smaller role.) The two have great chemistry, and it’s a nice movie that is also parenting/dad-themed, and it has a fun twist. Here’s the trailer.

There is, of course, an extra note of sadness to the film because it is James Gandolfini’s last starring role.

You can watch The Sopranos and Enough Said via HBO Go and probably HBO Now. (I don’t have the latter and don’t want to say something that isn’t true.)

So if you’re looking for some dad-themed stuff to watch for Father’s Day, here are two solid suggestions… or perhaps we should say… DaddyTips.

Happy Father’s Day to all dads out there!


Jun 04 2015

Avengers Age of Ultron Science Fact?

There’s a bit in Avengers Age of Ultron that involves a machine that prints skin. (I’m simplifying.) This technology even leads to the creation of a really cool character. (I won’t say which one in case you haven’t seen the movie yet. Although if not, what exactly have you been doing with your time? I mean, sheesh.) It would appear that what I thought was mere science-fiction is becoming science fact.

(The photo below has nothing to do with this post. But it could one day! 3-D Eyeball Printers!)

Deutsch: Zentrale Heterochromie: Grüne Iris, u...

Deutsch: Zentrale Heterochromie: Grüne Iris, um die Pupille herum jedoch ein braun-gelber Ring (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

L’Oreal is working on a 3-D printer that can print human skin.

“Print” should probably be in quotes. Basically they’re using a machine to create skin cells to replace human skin that’s burned or otherwise damaged. Read the Wired article for more.

Eventually, of course, this same technology could be used to create an entire body. For now that’s science-fiction instead of science fact. But who knows what the future holds.

h/t Top Tech Blog (via Scott Adams. Yes, the Dilbert guy. He blogs about interesting stuff and has other folks blogging about interesting stuff on his behalf.)

Source: Inside L’Oreal’s Plan to 3-D Print Human Skin | WIRED