Archive for July, 2012

Nerd Lunch and Atomic Geek crossover episodes!

Posted in nostalgia, podcast, pop culture, TV shows with tags , , , , , on July 31, 2012 by Paxton

Nerd Lunch Podcast

Atomic Geeks

This is week #2 of the HUGE Nerd Lunch/Atomic Geeks Summer Crossover series. This week, the casts of both shows get all mixed up and swap members.

First up is Nerd Lunch Episode 48.  Digio and Downs join CT and Kristen from the Geek Girls Network for an in-depth, expletive-laden discussion of Doctor Who.

Dr Who

Since Jeeg and I weren’t on this episode, I literally have no idea what they talked about…well, other than Dr Who. And maybe the Tardis. And Daleks. But that is the sum total of my Dr Who knowledge.

While Nerd Lunch yells at each other about the “easy fix button” that is the Sonic Screwdriver (I guess I knew that term, too) Jeeg and I traveled over to the Atomic Geeks for Episode 172 in which we discuss “Mash Ups” with Christian and Bloom.

Mashup or Shutup

I can tell you we talked about mashing up such things as board games and 80s-90s sitcoms, Super heroes and the AFI 100 greatest movies list and Pac-Man and horror movies. It’s all mixed up and confusing, much like this Summer Crossover series, but it’s a lot of fun.

To get Nerd Lunch Episode 48:
Download the episode from iTunes or listen to it on Feedburner. Or, listen to the show on NerdLunch.net.

To get The Atomic Geeks Episode 172:
Download the episode from iTunes or listen to it on The Internet Machine at the Atomic Geeks’ website.

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Review of Oz Book 6: The Emerald City of Oz (1910)

Posted in books, Wizard of Oz with tags , , , , on July 30, 2012 by Paxton

Following the Yellow Brick Road

Moving right along in my quest to read all of the original Frank Baum Oz novels. Here we are at Book 6. To see my reviews of the first 5 books in this series, click the banner above. Otherwise, keep on reading…

Like the last book, I picked up the illustrated eBook of this from the B&N Nook Store for .99 from Eltanin Publishing.  They have rendered a beautifully edited and formatted text and kept all the original Neill illustrations intact.  I have been supremely happy with Eltanin’s work thus far on the Oz eBooks I’ve read (Books 4, 5 and 6).  They are well worth purchasing and you can’t beat the price.  Eltanin is slowly working their way through this series.  I also picked up book 7 from them.  Unfortunately they haven’t released anything further than book 7 but my hopes are high that the rest will come soon.  Check out Eltanin Publishing for some really nice eBooks.

So, the last Oz book, The Road to Oz, was released in 1909 and this book was released the following summer in 1910.  As I mentioned, John Neill would once again contribute wonderfully detailed illustrations for the book’s interiors.  As a side note, John Neill would go on to write and illustrate several Oz books after Frank Baum died.

Emerald City of OzEmerald City of Oz

With this book, Baum had every intention of ending the Oz series.  While reading the book, you can easily see that Baum was closing the door on Oz.  We had seen him, in Book 5, parade around characters from his other non-Oz books to drum up interest in those with the hopes of sending his fans to his other stories.

With this being “the last Oz book” as Baum originally envisioned, Baum pulled out all the storytelling stops.  Instead of telling one story where we follow a group of characters through a fairly land all the way until the end of the book, in this book Baum tells two different story threads and shifts between them.  The first story thread involves the Nome King who first appeared back in Book 3. He’s extremely pissed at being defeated by a little girl and her pet chicken. Plus, they stole his magic belt. So, he gathers his army, convinces several more evil and sinister characters in Oz to take up his cause and storm the Emerald City to take it by force. While the Nome King builds this army and plans his attack, the second story thread involves Dorothy returning to Oz to ask Ozma to allow her and her Aunt and Uncle to live there permanently. The cyclone from Book 1 has destroyed their Kansas farm and the land is about to be taken over by the bank.  Ozma agrees and sends Dorothy and her Aunt and Uncle on a carriage tour throughout the countryside of Oz.  Along the way, Dorothy learns of the impending attack on the Emerald City and tries to return in time to warn Ozma.

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A counterpoint review of The Garbage Pail Kids retrospective book

Posted in 80s, books, Garbage Pail Kids, pop culture, reviews with tags , , , , , on July 26, 2012 by Paxton

Badass Book Report

Back in April, over on Nerd Lunch, CT wrote an extremely honest review of that Garbage Pail Kids retrospective book that was released earlier this year.  He admitted that he didn’t have the nostalgia tied in with the cards to make him really love that book.

GPK book

I, on the other hand, do have that nostalgia and CT had me write a counterpoint to his book review.  That review was just posted today over on Nerd Lunch.

Adam Bomb Jay Decay

GPK 1GPK 2

As a previous collector of the cards when they were originally released, click on over and see what I thought of the book.

Going to make you GREEN with envy

Posted in Mountain Dew, Pepsi, soda with tags , , , , , on July 25, 2012 by Paxton

LEB

Brian’s new assignment for the League of Extraordinary Bloggers this week is to photograph something green. Well, I have a Flickr stream chock full of green items. So, instead of showing you just one, I’m going to showcase an entire collection of green from my Flickr stream.  Soda, candy, milk.  It’s all represented.  Enjoy.

You can click any of these images to see them on my Flickr stream.

Mt Dew Dark Knight Rises
Vault ZeroPepsi Ice CucumberMello Yello MelonPepsi ShisoMt Dew hillbilly

Mint Crisp M&Ms
Apple Kool-Aid
Green Machine
Hulk milk ad

Other green entries from around The League:
1. ShezCrafti takes a look at her Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles collection
2. Lair of the Dork Horde looks at some tiny, green Z.O.M.B.I.E. figures
3. Brian himself over at Cool and Collected shows us a collection of Hulk stuff

Nerd Lunch Episode 47: Pop Culture Expanded Universes

Posted in books, comic books, movies, podcast, pop culture, TV shows with tags , , , , , , , on July 24, 2012 by Paxton

Nerd Lunch Podcast

Welcome to Episode 47. This week I am hosting the show and Jeeg has gone off on a solo adventure. We replace Jeeg with Shawn from Branded in the 80s and our rotating guest chair goes unfilled. But we actually have a guest. Unfortunately the guest doesn’t use chairs, so that’s why the rotating chair is unfilled. This week we are also joined by regular Atomic Geeks guest, Mark Dury. Our topic this week is Pop Culture Expanded Universes.

Star Wars novels

You know, the novels, TV shows, comics and cartoons based on already popular pop culture properties that “expand” the “universe” of that property.  We discuss the granddaddys of Expanded Universes with Star Wars and Star Trek.  However we also cover The Matrix, ET, Farscape, Highlander and even Alf.  It’s a lively discussion you should have a lot of fun with.  I know I had a lot of fun hosting.

Download this episode from iTunes or listen to it on Feedburner.

Or, you can listen to the episode online right here.

This is the first week of the huge Atomic Geeks/Nerd Lunch cross over series.  The new Atomic Geeks episode this week will also be about Expanded Universes.  As you saw yesterday, I’m also on Classic Film Jerks this week talking about Casablanca.

Next week, Jeeg and I go over to the Atomic Geeks to talk about mash ups.  Digio and Downs from the Atomic Geeks join CT for a discussion about Doctor Who.  It’s getting all mixed up and incestuous here in the Atomic Geeks Podcasting Network.  Should be a lot of fun.

I talk about Casablanca on Classic Film Jerks Episode #8

Posted in movies, nostalgia, podcast, pop culture with tags , , , , , , , on July 23, 2012 by Paxton

For the next two weeks, The Atomic Geeks and Nerd Lunch podcasts are having a summer crossover extravaganza. To start things off, I am the first guest ever on the podcast Classic Film Jerks. I am brought in by Digio and Bloom for Episode #8 in which we watch and discuss the Bergman/Bogart classic, Casablanca.

Casablanca

The three of us talk about the movie, if there was anything we liked/disliked about it or if anything stood out as being anachronistic or “out of date”.  We also recast the movie if it had been made today. At the end during our recast, I blow the other guys’ minds by mentioning that there was a TV show based on this movie in 1983 starring one of the guys from Starsky and Hutch.  It’s a pretty fun show.

You can listen to this podcast on iTunes or check it out on the Classic Film Jerks website.

Review of Dream Team by Jack McCallum (2012)

Posted in basketball, books, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, NBA, pop culture, reviews, sports with tags , , , , , , , , on July 20, 2012 by Paxton

Badass Book Report

So this week I’ve been looking at the 1992 Dream Team as this year is their 20th anniversary. On Monday I talked about their first appearance in the Tournament of Americas. On Thursday I looked at how that team had been merchandised and marketed to the world.  Today, I’m going to review a brand new book about the Dream Team that came out a week ago. It’s a behind the scenes book written by Sports Illustrated writer Jack McCallum. The book is titled simply, Dream Team.

Dream Team

On the surface, this book is similar to another book that was released in 1993 called The Golden Boys by Cameron Stauth.

The Golden Boys

Like Stauth, McCallum was a reporter that hung around the Dream Team at the time of the 1992 Olympics. McCallum gathered his notes and interviews with an eye towards releasing his book, like Stauth, right after the team won gold. Unlike Stauth, McCallum’s book deal fell through. McCallum kept those notes, however, and used them to write this new book.  And he supplemented it with new interviews.

Unlike Stauth, however, since this new book is being released 20 years later, he can get some perspective on the 12 man circus that was known as the original Dream Team. None of these guys are still active in the NBA. Twenty years makes people a lot more comfortable about revealing what really went on. In Stauth’s book, you weren’t going to get the honest truth so close to the situation (except from, maybe, Charles Barkley). With McCallum, new interviews with the members of the team and the officials/executives that made the team happen are much more candid. People now are much more willing to talk about the behind the scenes machinations that made this team.  And this is why McCallum’s book is endorsed by the NBA and Team USA and Stauth’s book was not.

Case in point, the controversy surrounding the exclusion of Detroit Pistons point guard, Isiah Thomas.  McCallum covers this topic at length.  It’s very interesting what everyone has to say about this.  Essentially, it comes down to Thomas really keeping himself off the team, but, there were definitely people that didn’t want him there.  Players and executives.

Isiah Thomas
I didn’t make the team?!

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