Sunday, December 27, 2015

Well, the last quarter of the year has been a complete bitch.

Okay, it's time to play catch up. What with NaNoWriMo - which I didn't finish because, well, I'll get to that in a second - the Reboot challenge, hosting my first ever Thanksgiving dinner, working now two jobs, and traveling to Nashville for Christmas, I haven't really had much energy or time to dedicate to my blog. I feel really bad about it, not so much because people pay attention to what I have to say, but because this is kind of like my diary, my way of processing through whatever it is that happens to be whirling around in my head at the moment. It's helpful for me to process things that way.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 30: What I Would Like to See Next

When I found out Reboot was getting ... rebooted, I had mixed feelings. One, obviously, was OMGOMGOMGOMG, and the next was, "Wait, what? Noooooooooo," followed by confusion and a kind of "meh" feeling. I mean, I wasn't too thrilled with the comic several years ago, and apparently, Rainmaker Animation is going to combine live action and digital stuff because Users are now Guardians or something. I don't know. I'm trying not to pre-judge the show like I did with Supergirl, which I am totally enjoying by the way, but as someone who is kind of over reboots, it's proving to be rather difficult to keep an open mind about it.

This is one of those times I feel like things should be left alone and that the entire series should just be released on Blu-Ray. Yes, even the dismal fourth season. I am, after all, the person who owns all of the seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Friends because I am a completionist. So that is what I would prefer to see.

And here ends my 30 Day Challenge! Onto your regularly scheduled programming, I suppose, at least until February, which seems a lot closer than it should, actually. Damn, time flies.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 29: How Reboot Inspires Me

Good gracious, the easier thing to do would be to write about how Reboot doesn't inspire me, because damn if my list isn't long: the world creation, the gradual character development, the storylines (except the fourth season in general, naturally), the visuals, the diversity of the female cast, etc. Even with its issues, which I've gone over this month, Reboot is still miles above a lot of TV that came after it.

I really do wish that children's programming took a bit of inspiration from Reboot. It was obviously made for children, especially evident in the first two seasons, but it didn't necessarily dumb things down for them (unless they were forced to by censors, but whatever) or put a moral-of-the-story at the end of each episode. Like John Hughes movies from the 80s, where the main characters were all teenagers dealing with teenager angst and confusion and what-have-you, the audience wasn't looked down upon and expected to be too stupid or inexperienced to understand what was going on. I mean, just take a look at My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic as another example. Both MLP and Reboot have a large following of adult viewers, and both the adult and child audiences appreciate the messages and the fun of each show, even if they're on different levels. While I don't think I'll ever create something meant for kids - I'm not saying ever, but it's highly unlikely, since I like to use the word "fuck" a lot and apparently, people aren't too keen on introducing their kids to swearing early on - it is definitely encouraging to see that writers can still talk about Issues without completely dumbing it down or treating children like they are incapable of getting more complex messages than what they get out of Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 28: Best Fan Art

Seeing as how I didn't do a music segment for this challenge, I'm going to put more effort into showing you guys some awesome fan art. Dammit, every time I do something like this, it inspires me to do more fan art myself. One of these days, I'm going to follow through on that threat. 

Anyway, enjoy!!

Friday, November 27, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 27: Most Dated Concept

God, this entire series is dated. I mean, it was made in the mid-90s, so what can you expect, really, but it's so hard to pick just one thing that is ridiculously behind the times. I think I'm going to have to go with Gigabyte, the super powerful virus that was created when Hex and Megabyte merged. Even back then, a gigabyte of anything seemed ridiculous.

"I am never going to fill up that much space!"

And now, yeah, my phone has 9G, and it's almost full. And I don't even have any music on it. I'm not sure what they'd have to call that virus now. A zettabyte* maybe?

Day 28: Best Fan Art >


* I am woefully behind in my computer science knowledge. I used to be so informed. Sigh. 

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 26: Change in Design

When ABC cancelled Reboot after its second season and the show went to Canada, things started looking a little different. Not only was the show more willing to go a bit darker thematically - having Bob thrown out of Mainframe into the web was obviously a turning point - the character designs
were allowed to be a bit more nuanced (aka adultified), and the graphics for the backgrounds and scenery were beautifully rendered, like I said back on Day 24..

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 25: The Comic

So a few years ago, there was this online contest to reboot Reboot in comic book form. The story called Paradigms Lost won, and from what I remember, I just was not impressed with it. Thank God it isn't considered canon.

It's not that it was bad, per se, but ... okay, so remember how I really hated the Miami Vice comic reboot several months ago? Well, consider my reaction to that debacle, and dial that down a few slots, from like 11 to six. You'll have my feelings toward the Reboot fan comic. The art wasn't that great, or at least, I felt it didn't capture the computer feel that the series did, and the storyline was lacking.

And that's really the only effort I'm going to put into this particular challenge day because I'm more ambivalent about the comic than I am anything else. Plus, I have Thanksgiving leftovers that are just calling my name.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 24: Favorite Non-Mainframe Location

Yet another challenge that nearly ended in a tie! "The Episode with No Name" was already featured in this challenge, so I wanted to pick another episode of which I am quite fond: "Where No Sprite Has Gone Before."

Monday, November 23, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 23: Adult Enzo vs. Preteen Enzo

Reboot is one of those rare series that I actually started watching in the first season. With Buffy, I didn't actually see the show until the second season premiere, after which I bought the VHS tapes for the first two episodes of the series, "Welcome to the Hellmouth" and "The Harvest." I didn't even watch the first season until I found it on sale at McKay's Bookstore about a year after the series concluded, so ... bad Buffy fan? Battlestar Galactica was very similar, and I didn't purchase the first game of Mass Effect until six months after I got the second. I'm pretty much a Johnny Come Lately, and I'm okay with that.

But with Enzo, I got to see him from the very beginning. Back on Day 3, I listed Enzo as my least favorite main character, and that is still very, very true. It's probably no surprise, then, that I'm going to say that I greatly prefer Matrix, the adult version of Enzo, over the younger version, but that still doesn't necessarily mean very much.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 22: Favorite Game

Again, I'm returning to Season Three for my favorite something of Reboot, and this time, the favorite thing is "Game," and the game is "Cron the Destroyer" from the episode, "Icons." This episode is also one of my top ten, for various reasons, although a big part of it are the references to Xena: Warrior Princess (which I'm going to be doing a challenge on in May!)

Exhibit A:
AndrAIa as Xena
Via The House that Rebecca Built
And Exhibit B:
Gabby as Gabrielle and I'm pretty sure that Jeff on the far right is supposed to be Joxer maybe.
Via Inwap

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 21: Something That Didn't Happen I Wish Did

Now, this is my personal bias talking here, but I wish that we'd gotten a better look at Mouse's past. I can only imagine what kind of sprites and programs with which she has history, and my fan fiction that I wrote as a teenager dealt with just that. Don't worry; I'm not going to force you guys to read my awful fan fic from, God, fifteen years ago (OMG FIFTEEN YEARS AGO), and I won't even summarize because I'm not a sadist. You guys haven't done anything to me to deserve that.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 20: Something That Happened I Wish Didn't

Oooh, this is easy: Season Four. I mean, I can handle the whole Daemon thing, even if I found it kinda dumb, but the entire Megabyte-fucks-with-Dot's-head-by-pretending-to-be-the-real-Bob thing? That can go straight out the pop-up window.
Via Reboot Revival
Plus, look how sad the Real-Real Bob looks back there.

I just felt like this whole scenario was poorly written, and it ends on a cliffhanger, anyway, with Megabyte again taking over the Principal Office. Maybe if it had gone through its planned 12 episodes, I might be speaking about it differently, but as it stands, I kind of wish they'd just focused on the Daemon storyline, stretching that into eight episodes.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 19: Favorite Pairing (Non-Canon)

Ugh, I don't know why I do the non-canon relationship challenge questions. I'm not really that big of a shipper between existing characters for lots of reasons. There are only a few shows where I disagree with romantic pairings (I'm looking at you, Lee and Kara; you should have never been anything other than kind-of-siblings), and I'm always impressed when characters who are friends remain friends throughout the series without there ever being an inkling that they might bump uglies.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 18: Favorite Pairing (Canon)

This one is easy because there can be no other favorite pairing: Mouse and Ray Tracer.
Via Reboot Wiki
Well, AndrAIa and Matrix are a close second, but whatever.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 17: Favorite Computer Science Reference

Dammit dammit dammit dammit. I'm sorry I got behind again. The good news is I've pretty much decided that NaNo is a lost cause right now (I'm at like, 15,000 words right now, and there are only eight days left to get to 50,000, so ... hahahaha, yeah the fuck right), so I'll have plenty of time to get caught up here!

So without further ado, Day 17!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 15: Favorite Season Four/Movie Scene

Okay, I'm behind on my word count for NaNo, so this is going to be a quick challenge entry. Also, it doesn't help that this is my absolute least favorite segment of the series.

That being said, though, this is downright epic.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 14: Favorite Season Three Episode

Season Three had some of the best episodes of the whole Reboot series, and I'll stand by that statement until the day I die. I know things get dark, and normally, I'd be all "ugh, quit it with the gritty," but damn. If there's one season that I can watch over and over again, it's this one. There are great homages to all sorts of genres, but they tend to focus on sci-fi ones because ... well, this is technically a sci-fi show.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 13: Favorite Season Two Episode

I'm not usually a big fan of cliffhangers; I kind of see them as cheap ploys to convince the viewers to stay tuned until the next season. I mean, it's a solid form of marketing, I guess, but my thoughts are that, you know what, the writing should be strong enough that you're excited to see what adventures the characters will get into the next season so you don't have to do this sort of thing. I blame J.R.

Friday, November 13, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 12: Favorite Season One Episode

Now, I know I listed Mike the TV as my least favorite secondary character a few days ago, but dammit if one of my favorite Reboot episodes doesn't feature him heavily: "Wizards, Warriors, and a Word from Our Sponsor."
Via Reboot Wiki

I'm a big Dungeons & Dragons fan, which is partly what draws me so strongly to this episode, and it's downright hilarious throughout, flipping stereotypes and reinforcing the idea of teamwork as an ideal. And Mike is at his least annoying, so that's definitely in the positive column. There's not too much in terms of further character development - hey, Dot's a planner, Bob flies by the seat of his pants, and Enzo's an inexperienced burden who accidentally sometimes helps! - but it's still early in the series. Much better episodes are to come, I promise, but it's definitely a great primer episode for the show.

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 11: Least Favorite Season

I promise I will get caught up this weekend. What with NaNo and work, it's been a little hard staying on top of this challenge, which actually makes me sad because Reboot is such an awesome series. Starting next year, I'm going to skip November challenges because, even without NaNo, the beginning of the holiday season always means crazy schedules, so ... this will be my last November challenge for the foreseeable future. Sigh.

Well, onto today's challenge!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 10: Favorite Season

When it comes to my favorite seasons of any shows, I tend to go with the lighter toned ones, or at least, like Miami Vice, the season in which there is the most hope. But in the case of Reboot, I am going with the absolute darkest season of them all: Season Three. Not only does this season have my absolute favorite episode, but it's got great character development and tons of awesome and obscure cultural references of which I am way more aware now that I'm older.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 9: Least Favorite Non-Sprite Character

I literally cannot think of any non-sprite that is my least favorite. I suppose the closest would be Herr Doktor? But I like him ...
Via Reboot Wiki
So no! I will NOT answer this one. Plus, I'm behind on my NaNo word count today, so that may be why I'm unable to think of my least favorite non-sprite. Oh, well.

Day 10: Favorite Season >

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 8: Favorite Non-Sprite Character

For the non-initiates, a sprite is a character in Reboot that isn't a binome. Binomes are either 1s or 0s, because, remember, this is a show made by computer dorks for other computer dorks. And kids.
Binome Family
Via Reboot Wiki
Binome One
Via The Java Hut
Binome Zero*
Via Reboot Wiki
So now that I have that out of the way ...

Monday, November 9, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 7: Least Favorite Secondary Character

Yes, I know. I'm behind. This is what I get for trying to do a challenge and participate in NaNo in the same month. I'll catch up - I promise - but for now, you get Day 7 on ... what's today? The ninth?

So anyway, my least favorite secondary character would have to be Mike the TV.  He has his amusing moments, sure, but on the whole, he kind of serves as Reboot's version of Jar Jar Binks.

Friday, November 6, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 6: Favorite Secondary Character

Like I said back on Day 2, Reboot does a kickass job of providing me with plenty of awesome female characters that it's difficult to narrow them down to just one, so, my friends, we have a tie.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 5: Least Favorite Villain

I actually had to think about this one, because the villains in Reboot are all pretty awesome, even Megabyte, whose schemes are always foiled by Bob, and yes, even Daemon, who was kind of a lackluster baddie, considering how powerful she was. One-shot villains, like the infected Guardians from Season Three, were also pretty badass, as shown by the yellow-skinned woman who fought AndrAIa, High Noon style, and most were really well-developed, with a clear arc for their journeys. Pretty impressive for a thirty-minute, computer-animated TV show from the early to mid-90s, if you ask me.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 4: Favorite Villain

Via Reboot Wiki
So I'm not even going to do an intro on this because it isn't worth it: Hexadecimal is the best villain, hands down, in all of Reboot. With all his nefarious schemes, Megabyte just can't hold a candle to her, and even Daemon, the Super Virus that took over the Supercomputer and used the Net to spread her domain, is lackluster compared to Hex. She's even arguably more powerful than both of them, what with her ability to create portals herself and control all of the nulls that exist within Mainframe. Plus, she can fucking fly.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 3: Least Favorite Main Character

This one is actually hard, because there are really no characters that I actively hate. Hell, even Megabyte, the big baddie throughout most of the series, is pretty awesome. But if I had to pick one character that I could take or leave, it would probably be Enzo.

Monday, November 2, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge, Day 2: Favorite Main Character

It should be no secret that I love television shows that feature tough, capable female characters. It's even better when someone's gender is rarely commented upon as being a reason as to why they're extraordinary. As a culture, I feel like we should already be there, but I'm an idealist, I suppose.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

30 Day Reboot Challenge

I cannot fully express how damn excited about this upcoming challenge. Sure, I've been excited before, and I'm pretty sure made that pretty clear, but I have such a deep love for this show that it nearly overshadows all of the others. It's silly and goofy and just simply fun, and even if it does go into some pretty dark places in the third season, it never really forgets what it is: a show about people who live inside our computers. Kind of hard to take that seriously, right?

But anyway, here's what you can look forward to next month!!

Oh, and Happy Early Halloween!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Saying goodbye ...

Yesterday, I watched as two of my adorable kittens went to their forever homes. I didn't really think it would affect me as much as it has, and a part of me wishes that I didn't have to give them away. But then the other part of me is like, "Juj, you would then have nine cats, and dear God, are you insane?" It's just that they've been such a huge part of my life since June, and now, as I look around the house, it seems a little emptier.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Sigh ...

Well, I figured it was about time to do the little dance that I do nearly every year around the beginning of fall: am I going to participate in NaNoWriMo or not? Seriously, it's an annual ritual, and each time, I always regret whichever decision I actually made, even if I've rationalized it to the nth. Last year, I opted out and instead completed the Mass Effect challenge, which was fun, sure, but I felt like BTVS' Spike watching through a window vampires eat their Thanksgiving human after the chip was placed in his head. The year before that, I did actually participate but only got a little over 6000 words into it before giving up, but I was going through a very deep depression at the time, so finding the emotional energy to do anything except breathe and occasionally getting out of bed was nearly impossible. I'm actually surprised I was able to write anything, let alone 6442 words, so in a way, I guess that was an accomplishment in and of itself. In 2012, I got much closer to reaching the goal of 50,000 words - I got a little over 35,200 - which made me feel kind of like a failure since I'd been able to be A Winner the previous year. 

And so that brings us to 2015, the year in which I will, again, join my fellow NaNoWrimers (this is now my term for them) to the race to the finish*. I've been talking about my new project, Paradiso, for a while now, and I figure it's time to go ahead and just do it. I'll be doing a lot of preparation over the next month, which is a new approach for me. My strategy for tackling NaNo is pretty much the pantser way: just go for it and hope for the best. But with Paradiso, I actually have to do some research (looking into history, physics, terraforming, cybernetics, and that's just the beginning), and although The Legion** has some pretty complex web-weaving, Paradiso is much more concise and is considerably less "epic," in the sense that I don't believe it will develop into anything further than a novel instead of being told over five novella arcs. 

So wish me luck! And if you are doing NaNo, please feel free to click HERE to go to my profile page and add me as a buddy. We can all use a little camaraderie during the month of November, can't we? 

* I'm still going to complete my Reboot challenge, which I'll post about later on in October. 
** I actually moved a lot of what was on my old website, A Million More to Go, into a new tab on this blog, and a lot more is to come over the next few months there. 

Sunday, September 13, 2015

New(ish) Experience for Me

Back in college, I had a panic attack just as I parked my car in the lot in front of where I worked. I'd never experienced one before - and didn't realize what was going on until my boss mentioned it - so I forced myself to get up and walk into the building, where I was lead to the break room and allowed to let it pass before opening the store. Other than my body going into shock after catching on fire*, I never experienced another one.

Until yesterday.

Monday, September 7, 2015

... On Mental Illness

A few years ago, I took Abnormal Psychology and had a damn blast. The final project (that also doubled as our final exam) was to pick a character or historical person and diagnose them with the various disorders I had learned about over the semester, complete with DSM codes, and because I am a giant dork, I picked Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker. I literally had two pages of disorders and whatnot, and even my professor was like, "Wow, you were incredibly thorough with this. Even more than I requested." Mental illness fascinates me in so many ways, but it wasn't until a few years later that I found myself trying to diagnose my own mental health.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Life with Pets: Flea Baths - A One-Act Play

Back in the quaint little awful place known as Small Town, TN, JUJU sits in her living room, scratching at her legs and swatting at phantom bitey creatures, while ZOLA occasionally jumps and barks at her own ass. BITSY sits high in the former window now kitty ledge that leads into Juju's office, biting at her tail, and BINA's and KITKAT's bodies twitch with every itch, having given up on ever being bite-free. 

It is the Great Flea Infestation of 2012. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

So last month ...

How can it already be September? The last eight months have been a sort of bizarre blur of happiness, insanity, sadness, frustration, inspiration, and a whole bunch of other emotions that I can't even remember.

Monday, August 31, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 31: What I Would Like to See Next

Honestly, after the fiasco that was Miami Vice: Remix and the underperforming film in 2006, I'm not sure the world needs any more Miami Vice. There are just some things that belong where they are: in the past. We already have the progeny of the show - The Wire, Breaking Bad, Law & Order, CSI: Wherever/Whatever/Whathaveyou, Justified, Longmire, The Shield, etc. - so it seems kind of unnecessary to flood an already oversaturated genre. It wouldn't be right to turn it into a comedy, either, because that would simply enrage fans of the show, and we all know how bloodthirsty fans are when it comes to the objects of their obsession*.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 30: Portrayal of Drug Use and Drug Users on Miami Vice

I really did choose the more complex challenges for the end of the month, didn't I? Today's challenge actually ties into yesterday's, something I didn't actually intend when I selected the order, but hey! It makes for a nice segue.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 29: Diversity on Miami Vice

Wow, it's already Day 29 ... where did this month go?? Like seriously, I feel like this month just started.
Via Wikipedia
Anyway, diversity. For a show produced in the 80s, as I've noted elsewhere during this challenge, Miami Vice was exceptionally diverse, unlike its younger cousin, CSI: Miami*, where even the Latino characters were ridiculously white-looking. The main characters were surprisingly evenly distributed: white Sonny, Switek, and Zito; black Trudy and Rico; and Latina/o Gina** and Castillo. Throughout the series, you saw all sorts of ethnicities cross the screen: Colombian, Haitian, French, Italian, Thai, Vietnamese, and Irish. And those are the ones right off the top of my head. They were cast in both the "good" and "bad" roles, sometimes against stereotypes. That's actually pretty impressive, even for today's standards.

Friday, August 28, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 28: Favorite Jan Hammer Music

Jan Hammer did some wonderful work on Miami Vice, and it is difficult to choose just one from three years worth of episodes (they recycled his work once he left the show after I think Season Three). But if I have to pick, it would have to be what has been called "Dorothy's Theme." It's used effectively in so many scenes, like here (from "Milk Run"): 

But here's the original (sorry about the quality, but I have no control over it because Youtube):

It's perfect for Dorothy's character (and any scene that is about innocence lost), and it makes me miss this series all the more. Well, the first three seasons, anyway.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 27: Most Dated Event/Concept

God, what about this show isn't dated? That would probably be the easier question. From Sonny's giant car phone to the sports cars to the architecture, I cannot think of a show that is more obviously 80s, even revelling in it. That's not a bad thing, of course, seeing as I get such a delight out of it, but it's more than a little difficult to nail it down to one single example.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 26: Fashion Fashion Fashion

Oh, the 80s. I managed to escape a lot of the fashion atrocities, being that I was between the ages of 0 and 7 during the decade, thanks mostly to my mom who dressed me in little get-ups* like this:
Courtesy Mom Lady
Circa 1987
My husband, on the other hand, was not so lucky. His mother had a huge crush on Sonny Crockett and used to dress him up as if he was Sonny Crockett, which leads to some rather awkward conversations that, well, I'd rather avoid at this point in time.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 25: Reflection of Real Life in the 80s?

I can only be called an 80s kid because I was born within the first part of the decade (1983, holla!), so this may be one of the more difficult challenges of this month. Three was born in 1976, so he has a much clearer memory of how things were back when Miami Vice burst onto the scene and limped into infamy with its craptastic later seasons. But I'm not going to defer to his memory. Instead, I will RESEARCH, because I am a geek and this sort of thing excites me.

Monday, August 24, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 24: Favorite Use of Pop Music in a Scene

A big reason that I fell in love with the early seasons of Grey's Anatomy was because of their expert use of pop and indie music, and it didn't hurt that I was introduced to a lot of artists I probably wouldn't have known existed (Tegan and Sara, I love you so much). While we may be used to such things now, this was not the way television was back in the 80s. Miami Vice capitalized on the growing popularity of MTV (oh, how I miss when you were actually relevant) and essentially created melding pop music with television. Genesis' "In the Air Tonight" was probably one of the best examples of this, echoing the emotional torpor Sonny was going through as he and Tubbs rushed to stop an elusive, powerful foe, and that was just the beginning.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 23: Worst Episode

There are two episodes that usually crown the "Worst of" list for Miami Vice: "Missing Hours" and "Cows of October." Both, unsurprisingly, are in the fourth season. To be 100% honest, I would just put "Missing Hours" here, too, because it definitely fits the bill as the worst episode, and I genuinely enjoy "Cows of October," kind of like how I love "Bad Eggs" from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I know it's terrible - and God, is it terrible - but it's at least fun. I cannot say the same for "Missing Hours," however, even if James Brown is featured as an alien involved in a secret government project.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 22: Best Episode

A lot of fans credit Season Two's "Out Where the Buses Don't Run" as the single best episode of Miami Vice, and I can say that, on some levels, I agree with them. It was well-written and full of twists and turns that even I, almost an expert at seeing these things coming, did not expect. And it makes you feel for the characters, as annoying as the guest star, Bruce McGill, was.

Friday, August 21, 2015

31 Day Challenge, Day 21: Something That Didn't Happen I Wish Did

I know that we technically got resolution with Tubbs' relationship to Valerie in the "lost episode" called "Too Much, Too Late*" - it played after "Freefall," the series finale, in January of 1990 - and it reflected the general burnout theme of the last season. But it still seems like there was so much left undone with the Valerie character.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 20: Something That Happened I Wish Didn't

And this is why I didn't list the Sonny Burnett arc as my least favorite storyline: I wanted to save it for this challenge. Any time any movie or television series uses amnesia as a plot device - Memento is not included in this list - I'm immediately disappointed and can foresee its downfall. Now, soap operas have used this trope since ... well, as long as I can remember*, but I don't think that we should use soap operas as a basis for doing anything.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 19: Least Favorite Storyline

Back on Day 8, I don't know if I made it abundantly clear that Caitlin as a character isn't so bad (she's actually pretty kickass, if you examine her prior to her marrying Sonny); it's that what position she played in the series made her the worst addition to Miami Vice. Plus, her death initiated one of the worst ideas - since "Missing Hours" - to happen to the show and probably put that final nail in Vice's coffin: the Sonny Burnett arc.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 18: Favorite Storyline

Seeing as Miami Vice was never big on arcs, this is actually kind of difficult for me to pick one of the few. If I look at the series as a whole, really the only true "arc" is the one that involves Sonny thinking he's Burnett, and we all know how I feel about that creative choice (hint: it was stupid). But even the series could be considered to be one long arc about the nature of fighting vice-based crime: it's the equivalent of playing Whack-A-Mole.

But by calling the whole series a storyline would be cheating, and I told myself I wasn't going to do that on this challenge.

Monday, August 17, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 17: Favorite Season Five Episode

Sigh. Season Five. Picking a single episode from this season isn't hard like it was back with Season One, where the high quality of the episodes make it difficult to choose; it's hard because they are pretty much all awful. The stupid Sonny Burnett arc comes to a close, and he somehow stays on the force, which is about as plausible as Tubbs being asked to join the Miami-Dade vice squad at the end of Season One's first episode.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 16: Favorite Season Four Episode

OMG, I'm all caught up. FINALLY.

Ahem, so onto the final challenge for today, in which I try to pick my favorite episode from a season of a series that was spiraling into absurdity. The first part of the season wasn't that bad, actually, but the one that really sticks out in my mind is "Child's Play," which eerily foreshadows today's police relationship with the black community.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 15: Favorite Season Three Episode

At first, the entire reason "By Hooker by Crook" was my favorite third season episode was because it featured George Takei as the bad guy, but after repeat watches (thanks to the El Rey Network back when Three and I were living in the apartment paid for by his employer), I realized it was probably one of the better episodes of the whole series, from plot to acting to ... well, everything. Directed by Don Johnson himself, it also starred Johnson's then-girlfriend (later wife) Melanie Griffith and Vanity, one of Prince's muses, who is now oddly enough a Christian preacher, and those two women enough make this episode that much better.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 14: Favorite Season Two Episode

Continuing my trend (is it a trend if it's only happened once before??) of picking more depressing episodes as my favorite, my choice from the second season's run deals with horrible reality of rape. It's also a Gina-centric episode, which tend to be kind of hit-or-miss (see Season Three's "When Irish Eyes Are Crying"), but I feel a lot of Gina's characteristics - that she personally identifies with female victims, for example - are appropriate for the subject matter.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 13: Favorite Season One Episode

Season One is just generally a great season, with so many episodes that I will gladly watch over and over again. The only episode that I tend to skip is "The Great McCarthy," but it isn't so much that I dislike it; it's just kind of dull to watch a boat race, and I'd much rather get to "Glades" and see the swamp people go to war to save a little girl.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 12: Least Favorite Episode of the Series

My least favorite episode from the entire series obviously should come from Season Five, seeing as it was my least favorite season, but in fact, it comes from my nearly-least favorite season, Season Four.

"Missing Hours" is pretty much universally considered to be the worst episode of the entire episode, almost tying with "Cows of October," both in the fourth season, but I at least can enjoy the latter. With "Missing Hours," we got aliens. And James Brown. And Chris Rock. That's all you really need to know about the episode. It's awful and not even entertaining, and I hate that it was a Trudy-centric episode, because she's a pretty awesome character (she's in my top five favorite Vice characters).

And that's all I'm going to dedicate to this mess of an episode. If you wish to watch it, be my guest. You'll probably end up hating yourself by the end.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 11: Favorite Episode of the Series

When I sat down to think of my favorite episode of the entire series, I immediately knew which one it was. It's not the best episode, which I'll tackle on Day 22, but it is the one I watch nearly every time I want to start a Miami Vice binge (it happens more often than I'd like to admit, actually). I have all the lines memorized, and yet I still get the same emotional ups and downs as when I saw it the first time.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 10: Least Favorite Villain

There are so many famous people that appeared in Miami Vice prior to making their big breaks. For instance, Julia Roberts was in "Mirror Image," the final episode of Season Four, before even Mystic Pizza was released. Bruce Willis played a wife-beating arms dealer right before he landed Moonlighting. Benicio del Toro had a bit part as a criminal-turned-actor in Season Three. And Helena Bonham Carter even acted opposite Don Johnson as a drug-addicted doctor girlfriend of Sonny's. But just because someone is famous now and has done several movies that I adore does not mean that they are going to play a good villain in an episode of Miami Vice.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 9: Favorite Villain

This is probably one of the hardest challenges to do, seeing as nearly every episode had a new villain, although most of the time, they were just expendable goons. Sure, there was Calderone* from Season One, who was as violent with his enemies as he was loving with his daughter, Angelina, and then Hackett, who finally pushed Sonny to the brink by the end of Season Four, but my favorite of all?

Friday, August 14, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 8: Least Favorite Minor/One-Time Character

Like I wrote back on Day 5, Season Four came pretty close to tying Five for the title of my least favorite season, and today's character is a big reason as to why. As a one-shot character, Caitlin Davies would have been awesome. She was gutsy, stylish, talented, passionate, and played by Sheena Easton, who actually did a really good job in the role. Hell, even if she had been a recurring character, trying out a long-distance relationship or something would have been okay. But instead the writers chose to have a whirlwind romance, where she and Sonny get hitched in, like, a day and begin a rather stupid venture called marriage between an undercover cop and a high-profile pop singer.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 7: Favorite Minor/One-Time Character

Miami Vice had, if anything, a colorful cast of minor characters, ranging from the goofy - Izzy Moreno - to the truly terrifying - the assassin hired by Calderone in the first season. For today's challenge, though, I'm going to stick with non-villains, because that gets its own challenge next!

Who I chose for my favorite minor character was phased out pretty early in the series because of negative fan reaction ... probably. While I found him charming and amusing, I can definitely see why people would wish for his untimely, and undoubtedly painful death. He was comedic relief, much like Switek and Zito were, and when the show took a more serious tone, the writers excised him, and his last appearance was in Season Four's "Missing Hours," quite possibly one of the worst episodes of the entire series.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 6: TV Show vs. Movie

Via Wonders in the Dark
I would like to preface this entry with the following statement: I actually really enjoy the Miami Vice movie, flaws and all, just as I enjoy the hell out of the television show, even as it revels in 80s campiness and a general lack of reality.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 5 Supplemental: Sonny's Unfortunate Hair

I was not kidding about this. Sonny's hair went through a lot of changes in the five seasons of Miami Vice, and a lot of them were not so pretty. His mullet was probably the most egregious example of why the 80s never needed to happen, fashion-wise, but Season Five just descends into absolute madness. 


31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 5: Least Favorite Season

I nearly turned this into a tie because, let's face it, Vice really declined after the third season. Obviously, there are a myriad of reasons as to why this is the case, from its change in slots during its third season, in which the show was competing with Dallas, to the original writers departing from the show after a very successful second season. It could also be blamed on Dick Wolf, who completely changed the tone - by changing the color scheme to more subdued hues and by using what has made his Law & Order franchise so successful: the "ripped from the headlines" technique - and turned it into a much more serious, much darker show. What really offset the incredibly harsh quasi-reality of Miami Vice was that it was portrayed with such a light atmosphere, both with its pastels and its sillier qualities, like Izzy and Noogie, so it was more palatable with audiences that weren't quite ready to see that seedy underbelly of which they'd rather be unaware. And honestly, I preferred it that way. I don't expect a cop show about vice cops to be the equivalent of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, but I also was never a big fan of the super gritty character study that was Breaking Bad.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 4: Favorite Season

It is a very rare thing, indeed, when I pick the first season of any television show as my favorite. With Buffy, it was Season Three; with Battlestar Galactica, it was Season Two. Arrested Development really began impressing me during Season Two, and Xena (my next challenge!) definitely was incredibly rough during the first season (like I am going to give that away before I even begin my challenge). Usually, growing pains plague the first set of episodes, where the writers are working out the kinks of character development, plot points, etc., and while the second season was probably the best season of the bunch, I find myself going back to rewatch the first.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 3: Least Favorite Main Character

It really does feel a bit like Sophie's Choice whenever I have to pick a main character from such a small main cast of characters. At some point throughout the five season of Miami Vice, I've loathed and loved every single one of them, so actually narrowing it down has been a tad bit difficult for me.

Well, mostly.

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 2: Favorite Main Character

Yeah, yeah, I know I'm behind - like, seriously behind - on this challenge, but the past two weeks have been simply taxing. I'll be posting an update on the insanity that was the process of moving our shit from the storage unit down to South Carolina, but for now? Onto a much belated Day 2 of the Miami Vice challenge.

Now, I'm going to talk more about diversity later on this month - Day 29, I believe - but I think it bears noting here, considering my favorite main character happens to be one of color. Like I said yesterday, Vice did an excellent job really showcasing its main locale, up to and including people who, you know, actually live there, much unlike Cameron Crowe's recent movie, Aloha, which didn't have a single native islander in its main cast, despite one character being 1/4 Hawaiian. I don't know if diversity was something that any of the creators had in mind when brainstorming for Miami Vice, but it definitely added something extra to the show, even if a lot of the people involved in illegal activity were people of color, a topic I'll actually get to later on this month.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge, Day 1: How Did I Discover Miami Vice?

Via Miami Vice Online
I was the girl who, at the ripe age of seven or eight, sat down with my dad and watched the unedited version of Top Gun* with my dad, so hearing swear words and seeing people die in explosions wasn't really anything that shocked me, but for some reason, Miami Vice was never something I was allowed to view. Maybe it's because neither of my parents were really into it - although my mother did admit later to enjoying the show during its original run - or maybe they felt the overt sexual themes and "realistic" depictions of drug use was something I was not ready to see. So it wasn't until over a decade later, after catching the odd rerun every now and then, that I finally decided, you know what, I want to watch this show. It was my first Netflix binge-fest, and I walked away from it feeling inspired, somewhat let down, and amused.

Monday, July 27, 2015

31 Day Miami Vice Challenge

It really does not feel like a year since I did my Battlestar Galactica challenge, but shit, it has totally been. But seeing as it's summer, at least near the end of it, I wanted to do something a little more ... summery. Cheery. You know. So of course I pick Miami Vice.

I make no apologies for my adoration of this series. I could binge-watch all five seasons and not get sick of the theme song, although I'm sure Three would disagree.

Alright, so here's what you can expect to see next month!

Day 1: How Did I Discover Miami Vice?
Day 2: Favorite Main Character
Day 3: Least Favorite Main Character
Day 4: Favorite Season
Day 5: Least Favorite Season
Day 6: TV Show vs. Movie?
Day 7: Favorite Minor/One-Time Character (Non-Villain)
Day 8: Least Favorite Minor/One-Time Character (Non-Villain)
Day 9: Favorite Villain
Day 10: Least Favorite Villain
Day 11: Favorite Episode of the Series
Day 12: Least Favorite Episode of the Series
Day 13: Favorite Season One Episode
Day 14: Favorite Season Two Episode
Day 15: Favorite Season Three Episode
Day 16: Favorite Season Four Episode
Day 17: Favorite Season Five Episode
Day 18: Favorite Storyline
Day 19: Least Favorite Storyline
Day 20: Something That Happened I Wish Didn't
Day 21: Something That Didn't Happen I Wish Did
Day 22: Best Episode
Day 23: Worst Episode
Day 24: Favorite Use of Pop Music in a Scene
Day 25: Reflection of Real Life in the 80s?
Day 26: Fashion Fashion Fashion
Day 27: Most Dated Event/Concept
Day 28: Favorite Jan Hammer Music
Day 29: Diversity on Miami Vice
Day 30: Portrayal of Drug Use and Users on Miami Vice
Day 31: What I Would Like to See Next

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

... In Which I Pitch to Oni Press

Back in April of this year, I discovered that Oni Press was accepting pitches from May through June, and I freaked out. Like, I immediately got online and squealed to my friends about it. It was a dream for me. I was aware of the difficulty, seeing as thousands of other creators also saw the pitch; plus, I don't have an artist attached, so my pitch had to be that much better to convince Oni to match me up with somebody who could bring what I wrote to life. I considered doing the artwork myself, but then, because realizations about myself have been A Thing for the past year, I came to the conclusion that, no matter how much I want to be a sequential artist, it's just not my thing. Know your strengths, bro.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Life with Pets: Kitkat Fears the Bitsy

A few days after giving birth to six squeaky kittens, BITSY lies in the middle of the living room floor, taking a moment to herself from the endless mewing of newborns. She's been ever at the ready, poised to lick up poop, steal them back from either Juju or Three, or to nurse them, and dammit, she deserves a break every so often. Her ears perk up when she hears the kittens announce that again they are awake and again they are hungry. 

BITSY: (sighs) It never ends. I hate my life.

As Bitsy makes her way to the closet where her box of kittens awaits, ZOLA pokes her head out from the hallway and lets out a snort. BINA sticks her head out just underneath Zola's and chirps. JUJU walks by the two and looks down in both confusion and amusement. 

JUJU: What are you guys doing?
ZOLA: We are investigating.

Checking his phone, Three obliviously strolls into the kitchen and away from the action. 

JUJU: Where's Kitkat?
BINA: Hiding?
ZOLA: Bitsy kicked her butt earlier.
JUJU: What?
THREE (OFF STAGE): Yeah, I was holding one of the kittens, and Kitkat happened to walk by just as Bitsy was coming to get it. It was not pretty.
JUJU: Bitsy!

Bitsy jumps out of the closet and stands confidently in front of Juju. Zola and Bina duck back into the hallway (off stage), leaving Juju flummoxed. 

BITSY: What.
JUJU: Did you attack Kitkat?
JUJU: Why?
BITSY: She was trying to eat my baby!
THREE (OFF STAGE): I was holding it while I was standing up! Unless Kitkat suddenly grows gravity boots on her paws, there's no way she could have gotten to your kitten.
BITSY: She is vicious!
THREE (OFF STAGE): She wasn't doing anything!
BITSY: You don't speak cat, human!
THREE: (poking his head in from the kitchen) Oh, so I'm "Human" now?

Three rolls his eyes and returns to the kitchen. The kittens begin to squeak again in the closet, and Bitsy shoots everyone a look, even at the nervous-looking Zola and Bina, who have both resumed their cautious positions mostly hidden in the hallway. 

BITSY: You woke them up again.
BINA: I haven't said anything?
ZOLA: Are they sad? Do they want kisses?

Bitsy returns to the closet to calm her kittens, and Juju takes a seat in one of the lawn chairs in the living room. Zola and Bina remain partially concealed, and KITKAT skulks past them, fear in her eyes. Juju spots her and sighs. 

JUJU: Kitkat, we put a litter box in the bedroom so you wouldn't have to sneak around like this.
KITKAT: SHHHHH! You will awake the demon!
JUJU: (sighs again) Okay, fine. (lowers her voice to a whisper) What's wrong with the other litter box?
KITKAT: It's not the one I like!
BINA: I like both litter boxes?
ZOLA: I like them, too. They have tasty treats.
JUJU: But this one requires that you be stealthy. And you, of all things, are not stealthy or graceful. Which is weird for a cat.
BINA: You fall down when you try to play with the shoe laces?

Kitkat immediately regrets raising her voice and lowers herself to the floor just as Bitsy suspiciously sticks her head out of the closet. Within a fraction of a second, she snarls and locks eyes with a terrified Kitkat.

KITKAT: I ... I-I ...

Kitkat scampers back down the hallway, her tail poofy, and Bitsy huffs and refocuses back on her kittens. Both Zola and Bina are frozen in their places, unsure of what just occurred. It's one thing that Bitsy chased Kitkat away by hissing and swatting at her; it's a whole other story when only a look can send Kitkat running. Juju shakes her head and laughs. 

JUJU: What goes around comes around, Kitkat.

The End.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

I Just Discovered a Fear of Mine! And You Can, Too!

I had a dream a few weeks ago where I fell into the ocean and was surrounded by giant jellyfish, floating blobs of inevitable yet random death by stinging. I was caught in the waves and trying my best to avoid the tentacles, although who was I kidding? I am a land creature, ill-equipped to handle the density of water in any meaningful way, except to flail about fruitlessly. The dream came to a close just as the largest of the jellyfish rode a wave right into me, and I woke up in a cold sweat.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Pull List for June 24, 2015

Welcome to the final week of June! Sadly, this is also going to be the last Pull List. I've enjoyed doing this because, hey, comics are awesome, but there is so much going on in my life right now - trying to break into comics, writing a novel, Bitsy's kittens, working on the house, starting a business, doing challenges, etc. -  that this is just one extra thing that I can't continue to juggle. I may eventually bring it back in some capacity, but I'll probably just stick with doing reviews for the time being.

But anyway, on with this week!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Pull List for June 17, 2015

Shit, this week is shaping out to look like when I was working at the comic shop. However, a lot of what's coming out is on my Trades Only list, so it only looks long ... That is what I'm telling myself right now, anyway.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Life with Pets: Bitsy Is Preggo

JUJU sits on one of the lawn chairs that she and Three have inside their living room, seeing as they sold nearly all of their furniture a two years prior and they haven't had the chance to go pick up what little they do have, stored in a unit a few states away. ZOLA snores at Juju's feet as her human types on her computer, and THREE watches a documentary while propped up on a pair of pillows, with KITKAT curled up on the small of his back. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Pull List for June 10, 2015

You know, getting back into the swing of things has been a lot easier than I thought it was going to be! It doesn't hurt that last week was such a tiny collection of comics, but hey, I take things as I get them. Sadly, Secret Wars is still going on (sigh), so I probably won't be posting a lot of Marvel books until that's over, and honestly, it's kind of a relief that I won't be spending as much money for next couple of months. Thanks, Marvel!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

My Pull List for June 3, 2015

Well, hello again! If you've been following my blog the past month or so, you'll know why I took such a long break from doing The Pull List, but I'm back, fresh off my Star Wars challenge and fully caught up on my comic reading ... for the most part. And if you've been reading my reviews since April, you are aware of my avoidance of almost all things Secret Wars, and hoo boy, am I glad that Convergence is over and done with.

Now, today is also the beginning of an all-new, all-improved version of The Pull List because, hey, when you don't work at a comic shop any longer, you have to be very selective of what you buy. Plus, this was starting to turn into something it's not, not to mention a lot of work, considering all the side projects I have going on right now (about some of which I will be posting later on this month). So instead of giving little mini-reviews of everything I'm definitely going to buy, I am going to pick two or three that I'm looking forward to reading, even if it would have been included in my Slightly Interesting pile. I'll still list the others I am reading - as well as the comics I've dropped, but I'll include an explanation there  - obviously, since this entire idea was intended to keep track of my comic book interests.

So here we go! Welcome to My Pull List.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 31: What Would I Say to George Lucas?

Via FAE Magazine
Dear George,

Can I call you George? I mean, I feel like I should be able to, considering how long I have followed everything you've ever created ... which is pretty much for the last two and a half decades of my life.

Anyway, I know I've done a lot of bitching over the past thirty days, and quite frankly, I don't take any of it back. You have earned all of the criticism I've posited in each of my posts, but you're a goddamn adult and should be used to it by now. It's not as if you haven't heard what I've written before, and you've managed to do pretty well for yourself in spite of it. As a matter of fact, you've profited beyond what most people dream of, so I guess you're laughing all the way to the bank. And then to charity, because that's apparently how you roll.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 30 Favorite Movie from the Entire Saga

Via Posters Grindhouse
I am one of thousands of people that say The Empire Strikes Back is their favorite of the entire series, and even my reasons are far from novel. The dialogue is on point, from "I know" to "I am not a committee," and the character development was delightful to watch, in particular Han's gradual adoption of a heroic persona that continued into Return of the JediESB doesn't necessarily have the emotional connection that I have with Day 5's Episode IV, but as a storyteller myself, it stands out as a bastion of greatness.

Friday, May 29, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 29: Something I Wish Were Different

Via Talking Comic Books
There are so many things about the prequels that I dislike, many of which I've about during this month's challenge: too much CGI, a complete lack of character development, the nonsensical storyline ... This list really could go on forever, and now I find myself really wishing that the Belated Media's version of the prequels (the first two, at least - I'm waiting on the third installment) was the real deal. Sigh.

However, my biggest issue isn't even that Jar Jar Binks exists, although that is a close second. It's just another example of the beef I had with George Lucas shoehorning Threepio and Artoo into the narrative of the prequels. His attempt at courting familiarity by paying fan service just rubbed me the wrong way. Don't get me wrong; seeing popular characters is a great promotional tool, and when it's done well, it's awesome. But when you have to go back and "fix" your original creation so it can at least seem plausible? That's when it gets a little muddy.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 28: Favorite Quote

Star Wars, the original trilogy in particular, is such a quotable series that several quotes from the movies have become a part of our daily lexicon.
"May the Force be with you." 
"I have a bad feeling about this." 
"I'd just as soon kiss a Wookiee."
I mean, maybe not everybody uses these on a regular basis, but say one of those lines, and I guarantee you that someone will smile. Of course, every fan of Star Wars has their go-to phrase, and I am no different.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 27: All-Time Favorite Scene in the Entire Saga

I nearly gave myself away back on Day 25 as to what my favorite scene in the whole saga is, and this scene was actually originally going to be my favorite of just Return of the Jedi. Then I thought about it and realized that the first two movies - and ultimately, the prequels - were building up to this moment, where the "prophecy" finally came true.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 26: Favorite Tracks from the Originals' Soundtracks

And the day for which I have been waiting has arrived. I am that person who, if you were to pick any part of any track from any of the original trilogy films, would be able to tell you what scene it was in and what dialogue was happening at that very moment. Because yes, I have seen these movies more times than should be humanly possible. And yet I feel no shame. Why should I?

Monday, May 25, 2015

Random Possibly Unpopular Opinions

  1. Racing games and first person shooters are vastly inferior to RPGs. 
  2. I don't like Nirvana and don't really understand the hype. It's not like I hate them - although Kurt Cobain's voice grates on my nerves - and I'll listen to one or two of their songs, but for the most part, I agree with Frances Bean on this one. Grunge is just not my scene.
  3. Diet Dr. Pepper is better than regular Dr. Pepper. 
  4. While I am a comic book nerd at heart, I am getting worn out on seeing a new superhero movie every fucking year. Almost enough to not care that Captain Marvel will be getting her own movie in three years. And I love me some Captain Marvel. 
  5. I adore Benedict Cumberbatch as an actor. Hell, I even liked him in Star Trek: Into Darkness. However, as a sex symbol? Uh-uh. He reminds me of Bruce, the big shark from Finding Nemo
  6. Garlic is the absolute worst spice ever, especially before you go to bed. I'm looking at you, HusFriend. 
  7. I prefer the simpering, immature characters in Jane Austen's books over her supposed heroines, who, to me, are mostly boring and pretentious (see: Fanny Price). 
  8. Eyeliner and Chapstik are the only two pieces of makeup anyone absolutely needs. Okay, maybe mascara, but that's pushing it. 
  9. Gin is the worst liquor on the planet. Ever. 
  10. Bourbon is the best liquor on the planet. My inner Polish heritage is crying right now. 
  11. Libertarianism is for selfish people. 
  12. I would actually miss the penny if we ever removed it from circulation. It keeps my piggy bank somewhat colorful.
  13. Kittens, while adorable, are much less preferable than an elderly cat who literally just wants to laze around and/or eat until it dies. 
  14. I hate winter. Like hate. Give me the blazing hot days of summer and you'll have a happy Juju. 
  15. I truly do not care if my veggies are organic. I do care if they are locally grown, though. Support your local farmers!
  16. Goodwill is just as bad as Wal-Mart or Target. There are much better thrift shops around that actually help people and don't give their CEO a personal jet. 
  17. N*SYNC is better than the Backstreet Boys. 
  18. Staying blond is way too much work. 
  19. Out of all the pantheons of all the religions in the world, the Hindu avatars make the most sense to me. 
  20. Out of all of the religions in the world, Buddhism speaks to me the most. 
  21. The Restoration Period (right after the Civil War) is probably one of the more interesting eras of United States history. 
  22. "Open floorplan" is one of the most awful phrases in the human language, especially in reference to any show featuring white people looking to buy a house. 
  23. I miss the soft rock and easy listening of the mid-1990s. Yes, even Bryan Adams. 
  24. Diversity is what I look for when I am trying to decide if I want to pick up a comic book. All straight white people? Thanks, I'll pass. 
  25. I'd rather camp in a tent than in a camper. 
  26. Paper and pen trumps tablet and nib. 
  27. Freesia is one of the worst smells that Bath and Body Works ever produced. See also: nearly any scent that Victoria's Secret ever produced. 
  28. I own an Xbox but would rather have a Playstation. 
  29. Indian cuisine is the tastiest in existence.  
  30. Vacuuming is the most soothing chore, but cleaning out a toilet is a close second. 

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 25: Favorite Scene from Return of the Jedi

Via LA Screenwriter
I know Return of the Jedi gets a lot of flack for the Ewoks and for some of the dialogue*, but it's still an incredibly fun film with some of the most recognizable scenes from the original trilogy:
  • Leia in the slave girl costume (sigh)
  • Threepio set up as a god by the Ewoks
  • Han's carbonite shell melting
  • Luke battling Vader while the Emperor looks on
It may not have had the character development of Empire or the innovation of Hope, but Jedi finished out the trilogy a lot better than the prequels did, finishing the Darth Vader arc bittersweetly. And it was stocked full of great scenes that I had to sift through to find my absolute favorite. Luckily, it wasn't too tough to pick one because I'm pretty sure that the scene I chose is one of the most iconic.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 24: Favorite Scene from The Empire Strikes Back

Via Star Wars Wiki
Spoiler alert: The Empire Strikes Back is my favorite film out of the entire saga, so sorry if you wanted to be surprised when you reached Day 30. I have each of the original trilogy films nearly memorized, so much that I don't even really need to watch it ever again (where's the fun in that?), but it's even more so with Episode V. I still feel many of the same emotions I had when I watched it the first time as a kid: glee, sadness, horror*. However, my fondness for the movie as a whole does not make today's challenge difficult for me in the slightest.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 23: Favorite Scene from A New Hope

Via LA Screenwriter
It is somehow already the 23rd of May. I don't know how this happened because I have a lot of shit to do before June 1st rolls around, and that includes finishing out this month-long challenge. So I suppose I should get to it.

Friday, May 22, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 22: Favorite Tracks from the Prequels Soundtracks

Eeee! I love the music challenge posts because 1) there's not as much writing to do and 2) I get to relisten to tracks that I adore. Not that I don't have the Star Wars soundtracks playing at least once a week, because I do. Those and the entire Mass Effect catalog. And Juno Reactor. And ... you know what, that is not the point. John Williams' epic compositions are.

So without further ado, my favorite tracks from the prequels!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 21: Favorite Scene in Revenge of the Sith

I saw this movie in the theater three times, two of which were by myself. The only real reason that Revenge of the Sith isn't my favorite of the prequels is because of Hayden Christensen, because this really is a far better movie than either of its predecessors. It has better action, better acting*, and better pacing, and I actually felt the stakes as the Jedi fell to the troopers, one by one. It has the exact opposite tone as Return of the Jedi: hopeless.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 20: Favorite Scene in The Attack of the Clones

Via Star Wars Wiki
Damn, this one is hard. Out of all of the prequels, Attack of the Clones is my absolute least favorite, so picking a scene that isn't just full of suck is kind of the opposite of Sophie's Choice. Which one isn't the worst? Okay, I am ridiculously tough on this movie, mainly because I loathe the stupid romance subplot bullshit, but I think it's warranted. Even Revenge of the Sith, with all its over the top, yet still wooden acting, has more going for it than this does.

A major problem with Clones - and, for that matter, the entire prequel trilogy - is that it takes itself so damn seriously while at the same time trying to up the ante when it comes to campiness. The whole sequence with Threepio in the battle droid factory is a good example of this; his lines - like "This is such a drag!" as his head is being tugboated behind Artoo - just don't fit within the universe* that Lucas created. However, there are some scenes that, despite their general too-serious tone, are still pretty fucking cool.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 19: Favorite Scene in The Phantom Menace

Via Star Wars Wiki
Oh, The Phantom Menace, how I do love you, despite the extreme disappointment that you were. Kind of like Matrix Reloaded, I walked in, prepared to be wowed by the mind of one of my major creative influences, and left feeling like I'd just watched an entire movie of occasional (somewhat boring) action sequences spliced between talking heads. Does that mean I didn't enjoy it? Well, not at first, obviously, since my nerd rage had erupted, but once I sat down and watched it several more times, I found myself appreciating a lot about it, in particular one scene that ended up being ruined by the third movie.

Monday, May 18, 2015

... On That War

In what may be one of my more popular posts, I talked about my body image. It's something with which I will most likely struggle for the rest of my life, even as I reach an age where society tells me I won't care any longer. Of course, I'd like to think that, since that article from 2012, I've matured enough to where my thoughts are drastically different from three years ago. I just let out a little chuckle; I know it's naive, even as I type the sentence. Such deeply ingrained ideas are very difficult to eradicate.

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 18: Best Star Wars-Related Story/Incident I've Had

I ... have no idea how to answer this one? Like, I'm seriously drawing a blank. This is almost as bad as when I couldn't remember any Separatists to say which was my favorite, except in that instance, at the last moment, I pulled Wat Tambor out of my ass. I mean, I've already talked about how my dad and I bonded over Star Wars, but I can't think of any particular time that stands out more than the others. I've never gone to any conventions (I know), and I've never met any of the cast, other than finding a signed copy of one of Carrie Fisher's books at a local used bookstore. A childhood friend of mine had an original AT-AT walker toy that he let me look at once? That was pretty cool?

You know what? Today is my Skip Day. Yep. That's what today is.


* I am, to this day, a staunch proponent of waiting to see the movie at least a week once a movie is released. It's not necessarily because I want to read reviews first, although I do tend to prefer going into a movie knowing what I'm in for, but so I don't have to deal with the sheer number of people. The last time I went opening night was for Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, and I regretted every minute of it. Ugh, so many fanboys. 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 17: Book Versions vs. Movie Versions

Why yes, I do own every novelization. Thanks for asking! The original trilogy is in paperback (somehow, I have two of Return of the Jedi, and they are the absolute same edition), and because I was a pretentious fan back in high school, I bought the prequels in hard cover. Granted, I took the sleeves off after the movies turned out to be shit, but whatever.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

31 Day Star Wars Challenge, Day 16: Favorite Minor Character

You know Oola? You know, Jabba's slave dancer that was unceremoniously offered up as rancor fodder* and then replaced by a captured Leia? She's a Twi'lek, which are essentially the asari of the Star Wars universe, only without a natural predisposition with the Force/biotics. Including the animated shows (Rebels and The Clone Wars), they have almost universal sexual appeal.
That's Oola on the right.
Via Of Blood and Honor: Star Wars Wiki
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