Archive for LEB

Some of my biggest Pet Peeves

Posted in personal, pet peeves, soda with tags , on September 24, 2013 by Paxton

LEB

It’s League time. This week, we are asked to talk about some of our “pet peeves”. I have them, so I thought I’d talk about them. If you do any of these, I’m sorry in advance…but I hate you.

Shopping Cart
People not returning their carts to the cart corral. OMFG this absolutely drives me up the wall. Supermarkets, Wal-Mart, Target, you name it, and people will leave their carts in the middle of the parking spot. Or with the front wheels lodged over the curb.  WTF?!  I’ve actually returned 5 or 6 abandoned carts to the corral before even walking into the store. I’ve seen abandoned carts in parking spots that actually sit RIGHT NEXT to the cart corral. That’s just lazy, people. God forbid you walk your cart 10-15 ft to the nearest cart corral. Yes, I have been in the situation where the nearest cart return is on another aisle (usually when you park close to the front of the store). In that case, I take the cart back to the store.  It’s polite, plus, it keeps from making the parking lot an obstacle course when you are trying to park with all of these abandoned shopping carts littering the landscape like dead bodies.  PUT YOUR GODDAM CART AWAY.

movie_concessions
Leaving your movie seat looking like a popcorn/soda bomb exploded.  I think it’s a cop-out to say “they have people to clean that up”. How hard is it to take your leftover bag and cup and drop it in the trashcan on the way out of the movie? I’m not saying you have to grab a broom and sweep up, just walk your trash over to the goddam cans you lazy SOB.

coming_attractions
Movie trailers. I love them, but lately they show too much of the f**king movie. And why do studios now release all these clips of the big tent pole movies? Before Avengers was released to theaters you could probably have pieced together 90% of the movie with all the trailers, international trailers and TV spots that were released to the Internet. I hate that. STOP IT.

The above can also apply to TV viewing.  Many shows have begun showing “coming up after the break” previews before commercials.  It’s irritating.  I have to mute or fast forward before seeing something early which ruins it if it’s supposed to be funny or particularly shocking.  I’m already watching the show, so essentially those “teasers” are preaching to the choir.  Stop that sh*t.

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Hanna-Barbera’s The Robonic Stooges (1977)

Posted in cartoons, nostalgia, pop culture, TV shows with tags , , , , on July 17, 2013 by Paxton

LEB

This week’s assignment from the League is to talk about robots. Another rather broad topic, but instead of listing my top 10 robots or something along those lines, I’d thought I’d discuss one of my favorite cartoons that happens to combine robots and…The Three Stooges?!

Yep, in late 1977 CBS aired the cartoon, The Robonic Stooges featuring Moe, Larry and Curly as bumbling, bionic super heroes.  The show was produced by Hanna-Barbera.

robonic_stooges

The show originally ran as a segment on the variety show, The Skatebirds. The Skatebirds format was extremely similar to The Banana Splits.

robonic_stooges3 robonic_stooges2

The bionic enhancements to the Stooges gave them abilities that were very similar to Inspector Gadget. Extending limbs, hidden gadgets, plus the letters on their chests were actually hidden doors that open to allow the Stooges to get supplies and objects they needed for their adventures.

robonic_stooges4

Also Curly seemed to be stretchy and inflatable. Many episodes featured him getting filled with hot air and blowing away.

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The show was wacky and fun. The Stooges would bumble their way through stopping thieves and mad scientists. Often times succeeding despite screwing everything up.

The Skatebirds was cancelled at the end of 1977. However, The Robonic Stooges was popular enough to get their own show after the cancellation. However, it would be cancelled by Spring 1978 and shown in reruns for the next few years. That’s how I watched the show, in reruns in the early-to-mid 1980s.

The voice cast was very good. Unfortunately, all of the original Stooges were dead by the time the show was in production, so Moe was voiced by the great Paul Winchell, Larry by Joe Baker and Curly by Frank Welker who did a variation on his JabberJaw voice.

Another show similar to this (but no robots) was Super Globetrotters. It was another way to make real life celebrities into cartoon super heroes. And it, too, was awesome.

Episodes of this show are pretty hard to come by online.  There are some clips on YouTube, but that’s about it.

Here is a shortened version of the show’s intro.

Here’s a clip of the Stooges inflating a giant inflatable battleship.

Robots around the League:
– Shawn talks about a robot used to sell Hitachi VCRs
– The Goodwill Geek shows us his awesome robot collection
– The Nerd Nook lists their top 10 pop culture robots

Spending my kid’s college tuition on Hake’s Auction #209

Posted in Batman, comic books, movies, nostalgia, pop culture, Superman, TV shows with tags , , , , , , , , on July 12, 2013 by Paxton

LEB This week’s assignment for The League is to browse Hake’s Auction #209 and find all the cool stuff we’d buy if we were rolling in dough like P-Diddy. So I spent my fair share of time at work this week perusing the enormous auction catalog and came up with some stuff that I would like to buy.  Assuming, of course, that money is no object.

hakes_star_wars There were several awesome Star Wars items I found interesting. Firstly, the C3POs cereal lot featuring a full size C3PO standee and three box flats. I have always had a fascination with this particular cereal and the ephemera it created. These are particularly good examples of that. The seven Star Wars Coca-Cola promotional posters are also pretty awesome. Four of them are from Burger Chef/Burger King giveaways in 1977 and feature Del Nichols artwork. Three of them feature Boris Vallejo artwork and were to promote the release of Empire Strikes Back. Finally, I am in wet, sloppy love with the full size Return of the Jedi Burger King glasses Darth Vader standee (1983).

There were lots of comic book and super hero related items that I want. Tops on that list would probably be The Great Comic Book Heroes book from 1965. hakes_great_comic_heroes_book It’s signed by several comic luminaries like Jerry Siegel, Joe Shuster, Bob Kane, Shelly Moldoff and Will Eisner. Yes, the creators of both Superman AND Batman signed this thing. Plus, I’ve looked at this book before and it’s pretty awesome.

hakes_superman_items

Speaking of Superman and Batman, I found several items featuring those heroes that rock my Casbah. The boxed Mego Superman doll from 1977 is particularly awesome because I’m kind of in love with the packaging art. And the art on the 1954 Superman metal lunchbox is pretty close to melting my eyeballs out of my head and that’s only the picture. And these Mego Comic Action Heroes figures from 1975 (in package!) are also incredible. And speaking of incredible, check out the awesomely weird and bizarre cover to issue #33 of the comic World’s Finest. Why the hell is Superman spinning Batman and Robin in the air WITH HIS FEET?!  I love the Golden Age. I also would buy Flash #147 featuring the second appearance of Reverse Flash with a great cover homage to Flash #123.  I actually already own Reverse Flash’s first appearance in Flash #139.  And what will I put all of these comics in when I own them?  That’s right, my very own g***amn comic spinner rack from the late 70s.  I’ve wanted one of those retail spinner racks ever since I started collecting comics in the early 80s. Continue reading

Rebooting the Six Million Dollar Man to make it better, stronger, faster

Posted in Bionic Man, pop culture, Six Million Dollar Man, TV shows with tags , , , , , on June 7, 2013 by Paxton

LEB

This week for The League Brian asks us what property would we like to see rebooted/return? And how do we imagine that it would be different?

Tough question.  CT and Jeeg over at the Nerd Lunch blog enjoy doing Reboot Challenges that are similar to this.  I like the idea of reimagining a favorite property.  So my pick to have a new reboot will no doubt be no surprise to readers of this blog.  I want to see a TV reboot of The Six Million Dollar Man.  This reboot, of course, would also lead into a reboot of The Bionic Woman.

SMDM1 BW1

There is a mostly successful reboot of the property going on right now in comic books.  I’d like to bring that success to a TV show.  However, I wouldn’t necessarily adapt what Dynamite is doing in their comic, but I like several aspects of what they’ve done so I might use them.

So let’s begin.

Premise: I’ll keep the origin roughly the same.  Steve is a military pilot.  Special Forces, I haven’t decided the branch; Navy Seals, Army Rangers, whatever.   Steve is an excellent soldier and pilot and due to his proficiency will pilot experimental aircraft for the military from time to time.  During one of these test flights, something goes wrong and Steve crashes in a horrific explosion and he barely survives.  Like in the original novel and the show,  the accident will damage Steve’s head, both legs and one of his arms.  OSI, a clandestine military department, chooses Steve to receive prototype nanotech plus bionic implants to repair his body.  The surgeries are done by OSI’s bionic specialist Dr Rudy Wells.  During Steve’s multiple bionic surgeries Rudy decides that for better balance and performance he will need to replace both arms.  The bionic limbs are controlled/regulated by microscopic nanobots that are implanted into his body.  This allows for “software upgrades” on the fly for mission specific details, tech and intel.  It also allows for better monitoring of Steve’s bionics and vitals from Rudy’s control center at OSI.  After the surgeries and physical therapy, Steve joins OSI as an agent and is placed under the supervision of Audrey Goldman who doles out his assignments and briefs him on intel.

Steve Austin

Storylines:  The first part of the first season will deal with the aftermath of the accident and Steve’s subsequent physical therapy and testing of his bionic limits.  After he joins OSI, Steve is used as a black ops agent.  He performs impossible missions that no one but Steve and his bionics could accomplish. For the most part, starting mid-season, the episodes of this series, like the original, will focus on Steve’s “missions” for OSI.  Steve does infiltration, recon, sabotage and maybe even a little assassination.  I also want some stories to delve a bit more into the OSI operations side.  Maybe even a few “between missions” episodes where we see Steve get tune ups and upgrades from Dr Wells.  This allows us to see that Steve gets damaged during his missions has to have a new arm or leg fitted.  This will also show some testing of new “special missions” bionic gear like underwater legs with a built in oxygen respirator and a new arm with lasers in the fingers.  Stuff that the 70s toys were built upon but never made it into the show.  This time at OSI will also show the building of the working relationship with Audrey Goldman and Rudy Wells.

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6 undeveloped movie scripts that were turned into comic books

Posted in A Nightmare on Elm Street, Batman, Bionic Man, comic books, Freddy Krueger, Friday the 13th, Jason Vorhees, movies, Six Million Dollar Man, TV shows with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 2, 2013 by Paxton

Cavalcade Comics

This week the topic for The League is “comic books”. Yep, just “comic books”. I recently did an article about comic book covers that homage famous movie posters, so that idea was already burned. Fortunately, my draft articles are deep with ideas so I pulled this one out of the depths and fleshed it out a bit.

I love movies.  I love comic books.  I love comic book movies.  We have tons of movies coming out BASED on comics books.  But how about comic books based on movies?  There are plenty of those as well.  But what about comic books that are based on movies that never were made for whatever reason.  Ahhh, that could be interesting.

Today, I’m going to talk about six undeveloped movie scripts that were turned into comic books.

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Kevin Smith’s Green Hornet – These first two entries are probably the most high profile examples of unused movie scripts becoming a comic book.  In 2004, Smith wrote a screenplay for a new film version of The Green Hornet.  Much like the next script in this list, it was a reboot of the characters and the concept.  Smith even announced that he intended to direct the feature as well.  The project, however, died after the poor box office of Smith’s Jersey Girl.  Dynamite Comics purchased the unused script and had Kevin Smith adapt it into a new Green Hornet comic series.

Kevin Smith's Bionic Man
Kevin Smith’s Bionic Man (2011) – I talked about this series in my Bionic Reviews feature a month or so ago.  Kevin Smith wrote a screenplay for a new Bionic Man movie back in the 90s. It was a reboot of the characters and concept of the Six Million Dollar Man TV series.  It ultimately went unused.  However, after the success of Smith’s Green Hornet title they asked if he had any other unused scripts to adapt.  Smith pulled out the Bionic Man script and Dynamite loved the idea.  They tapped Phil Hester to adapt the screenplay into a 10 issue story arc to launch a new Bionic Man comic series that is still being published to this day.  It has also spawned a Bionic Woman comic series.

fm_robocop
Frank Miller’s Robocop (2003) – During initial production of Robocop 2, there was a first draft script by one of the original Robocop screenwriters, Edward Neumeier. However, due to a writers strike he dropped out. One of the producers contacted Frank Miller to write the script as Miller was still riding the success of his Dark Knight Returns graphic novel. Miller wrote a draft that producers and studio executives labeled “unfilmable” and the studio had the script rewritten into what eventually became Robocop 2, the movie.  In the early 2000s Avatar Press acquired the Robocop comic license and the publisher William Christensen, who owned a copy of Miller’s “lost” original screenplay, contacted Miller about adapting it into a comic story.  Miller was enthusiastic and worked with Steven Grant to adapt his unused screenplay (which included notes for Robocop 3) into a story.  Due to scheduling conflicts, Miller was only able to contribute some of the covers and not actually write or draw the interiors.  The nine issue adaptation was published in late 2003.

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LL Cool J’s senses destroying debut in the movie Krush Groove

Posted in movies, music, rap with tags , , , on April 19, 2013 by Paxton

LEB

This week, The League is asking us —

“What moment in pop culture had you saying “Now, that’s how you make an introduction!”

One thing popped into my mind as the perfect example of a bombasic and awesome introduction.  This week I’ve been writing an article ranking Run-DMC’s studio albums in order of my personal preference as well as researching the group Run-DMC in preparation for the 25th anniversary of their album Tougher than Leather.  So that is why this particular movie introduction was on my mind.  I’ve talked about it several times on my blog. It happens during one of my favorite movies of all time, Krush Groove.

Krush Groove

Around the middle of the movie, Run-DMC and uber producer Rick Rubin are holding auditions. A young lady finishes singing a song and as they are escorting her out and are closing the auditions, a group of three guys storm in. The one in the middle is LL Cool J. Amongst the protests of Jam Master Jay and Rubin that the auditions are closed, and without preamble, LL yells “BOX!” at his friend who proceeds to hit PLAY on the suitcase nuke-sized portable stereo in his hand. The beat starts, LL paces the floor like a caged tiger for a few seconds and then proceeds to TEAR THE ROOF OFF THE STUDIO with the opening verse to I Can’t Live Without My Radio.

It’s hard now to really put this scene into the proper context of 1985. I saw this movie in the theater and the scene blew my young mind. LL’s delivery and aggressive lyrics mixed with the minimal bass-filled beats were like a jackhammer tearing away at my preconceived notions about rap. This scene made me an LL fan for life. And while LL has certainly mellowed over the years, he still has it in him to create an energy filled rap track.

Check out his most recent single, WHADDUP, with Chuck D, Tom Morello and Travis Barker.

Other top introductions from around The League:
Pop Rewind talks about being introduced to movie franchises like Batman and Terminator via their sequels
Brian at Cool and Collected talks about great 80s rock intros
Diary of a Dorkette talks about being introduced to She-Ra
Goodwill Geek talks about his introduction to Thundercats
Both Batcave Toy Room and Las Vegas Yankee talk about Superman: The Movie.

Muppet Treasure Island and it’s awesome soundtrack

Posted in movies, music, pop culture with tags , , , , , on January 31, 2013 by Paxton

LEB

So, this week’s topic for the League is “pirates”. Unfortunately, I’ve already extolled the virtues of one of my favorite pirate movies of all time, The Pirate Movie, during it’s 30 year anniversary last year. So, I can’t un-pop that cork. My next best option is to talk about Muppet Treasure Island.  And more specifically, the soundtrack.

Muppet Treasure Island was released in 1996.  It was the second of the Muppet movies, after Muppet Christmas Carol, to be made in partnership with Disney and after Jim Henson’s death.  It starred Tim Curry as Long John Silver and Kevin Bishop as Jim Hawkins.  The movie, financially, was a success earning a higher gross than the last three movies.

The movie itself is funny and clever.  Curry is great as Silver.  Bishop is, well, not awesome.  His voice is really high, like a 6 year old girl.  It’s really sort of annoying.  Other than that I enjoy this movie as much as I enjoy Muppet Christmas Carol.   In general, I see Muppet Christmas Carol as a better movie but Muppet Treasure Island has the better soundtrack.

Now, let’s take a look at that awesome soundtrack with a bunch of very catchy, totally Muppet-style songs that are all pirate themed.

Muppet Treasure Island soundtrack
This exists. And I own it.

Here are some of my favorite songs from the soundtrack.

Shiver My Timbers is the song that plays over the opening credits featuring pirates burying treasure on an island. Treasure Island. It’s very dark and is very chant-like. It’s probably my favorite song, and it’s totally pirate-y.

Cabin Fever is my second favorite song. It features the cast singing about having “cabin fever” while sailing out at sea. It’s absurd and over-the-top and completely bananas. That’s why I love it. It has a distinctly “islands” feel to it with the steel drums. My favorite lyric in the song:

“Cabin fever has grabbed us all aboard,
This once fine vessel has become a floating psycho ward.”

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