Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Saturday, May 9, 2009

STAR TREK, a review by Kirkslashspock

In high school, if you knew me then, you'll probably remember that I was a bit of a science geek. Not just a science fiction geek, but a science geek. In fact, bathroom reading material right now includes physicist Michio Kaku's last book about impossible (and possible) science fiction concepts, and astronomer Phil Plait's book about how our planet is a fragile little thing in this cosmos that could succumb to everything from gamma ray bursts following a local supernova to comets smashing into the earth to unlikely events like alien invasions and the like.

So naturally the only thing that really bothers me is the science. Oh ho, you're bothered by the science in Star Trek NOW? Well, I was then, but I didn't think JJ Abrahms was going to play so loose with concepts and terminology. For example, to try not to spoil anything, there was a part where a character was describing a supernova (exploding star) that was 'a threat to the galaxy...'

Here, we tread into the dangerous mistake of confusing what a galaxy is and what it isn't. For example, our sun and the planets around it aren't a galaxy. They are a solar system. A system with two suns is a binary system, and one with three is a trinary. But they aren't galaxies.

Let's quote Monty Python here to describe the Milky Way Galaxy that our planet resides in:

"The galaxy itself contains a hundred billion stars; it's a hundred thousand light years side to side.
It bulges in the middle, fifteen thousand light years thick, but out by us it's just three thousand light years wide.
We're thirty thousand light years from Galactic Central Point, we go 'round every two hundred million years,
And our galaxy is only one of millions and billions in this amazing and expanding universe..."

So, basically, one sun exploding isn't going to take out the galaxy. The galaxy is big. Really big. Now, a supernova can theoretically kill a lot of life in a wide area thanks to the Gamma Ray Burst it generates, but the whole galaxy? Not even remotely impossible.

There were all sorts of little science facts like this, avoidable ones that could have easily used the conceit of science fiction to get away with a lot of this, but they didn't seem to even try it as much as they are trying to do it on Lost. Frankly, I thought Scotty would pull out a fairy wand at one point when teleporting people onto ships going at warp drive or the main villain using Magic Ragu Sauce to destroy a planet.

But, I liked it.

It did seem a little too much like STAR TREK: THE WRATH OF SHAKEY-CAM at some points, or STAR TREK: THE SEARCH FOR LENS FLARES, but even once you get past the prettiness of the new ship and the awfulness of Chekov's voice, and the plot holes you could drive a Klingon Bird-of-Prey through, it was a really fun film. I've always felt that the film version of these characters from the Original Series were New Takes on those characters. Sure, they had the same flavor as The Original Series, but they felt different. More adult for their time, perhaps.

In much the same way, Zachary Quinto's take on Spock is much the same, as are most of the rest of the cast's performances. I wish we'd seen more of Simon Pegg's take on Scotty, but in the movies Scotty really only had one or two good scenes per movie.

Still, it's an interesting thing, this reboot. What will the sequel be? The Wrath of Khan? How can we have TWOK without having Space Seed first? It'll be interesting to see if they screw this up further or if they keep it alive.

But I'm not buying any toys.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Muppetstar Galactica

Hah, now THIS was funny...

So. The ending of Battlestar Galactica has upset some people, and I'm trying to figure out why. I think the reason why is because these people never actually watched the original series, or they watched it and don't remember how incredibly religious the characters were. They were, after all, following the prophecies handed down by their gods, y'know?

I think a lot of people I know are irked that it would actually turn out that the show actually contained apparitions that must be labeled "angels" and such. Let's face it, many of my acquaintences are either atheist or at the very least agnostic, and being forced to face up with the fact that one of their favorite shows was thinly veiled religious dogma is a bit upsetting. But I think they're not really thinking things through, and are just taking things at face value a little too seriously.

First, the first BSG was way more religious than this one. And they even went so far as to give us a character who actually seemed to be the Biblical devil... Count Iblis, in the two part War of the Gods episodes. When shot with a blaster, he transforms briefly into a demon of sorts.

Lots of people are upset that Kara died and came back to life as some kind of angel given flesh. The same thing happened to Apollo in the original series... he sacrificed himself to save a fellow crew member who had fallen under Count Iblis' influence. Then suddenly his body disappears!

Sound familiar?

Now don't get me wrong. I really don't think this is what they were shooting for when they originally put the series on the table. In fact, I don't think they had anything lined up except that Galactica would make it to Earth in primitive times and populate it, mating with the primitive man living there, eventually leading to our present day society. See, the whole BSG mythos has always been based on Erich Von Daniken's Ancient Astronaut theories. His, and Zechariah Sitchin's ideas. Do any of them hold water? Not really, if you do your research. Granted, reading their books, Chariots of the Gods from Daniken and Sitchin's whole saga about the planet Nebiru... those books are all very gripping, but when you research them, they just don't hold that much water.

Arthur C. Clarke said that any technology, sufficiently advanced of a society, would appear to be magickal in nature. Now, magic, at least to me, is synonymous with religion. Miracles? Magic. Immortality? Magic. Religion? All about magic. The unexplainable. Nobody can explain magic, that's its nature. Nobody can explain religion to a scientific mind, either.

So where do these "Angels" appear in the original BSG time frame? In The Ship of Lights. The Seraphs, as they were referred to in the script but not actually on the series, were these white-clad mysterious beings who told the Colonials "We were once what you are, we are what you may be." Or something like that. Well, anyway, they resurrected Apollo after this devil-being struck him down. They made his body disappear.

My point is: nothing happened that hasn't happened before in BSG. Well, okay, lots of things did, but what's causing so much commotion among fans has happened before.

My ideas:

The "Angels" were part of a sufficiently-advanced society that tried to accelerate man's evolution more than once. The first trial led to the creation of Cylons, which led to war and the depopulation of both species. The Angels (Seraphs... seraphim?) saw the damage they had done by interfering, felt appropriately guilty, and resolved to help both races to break the cycle they saw them performing. They weren't really Angels... they were an alien race sufficiently advanced to seem magickal. Is that so hard a stretch?

Oh there were things I didn't like. Starbuck being an agent of Death. I don't mind President Roslin not dying before finding the real Earth, because she rejected prophecy... she saw that prophecy was not infallible. Our paths are our own. But the Angels? Angel Six and Angel Baltar? Those were master strokes. I mean, how else were you going to explain them? What, Caprica Six stuffing Baltar's face in her junk during a nuke imprints her programming on his subconscious as she returns to the Resurrection Hub while he survives? That seemed to be the popular reasoning until Head Baltar started showing up with Caprica Six's subconscious.

No, they're not really Angels. That's how the Colonials perceive them, because the Seraphs, the aliens, are so far advanced that's all we can do to resolve them into our reality.

So there were disappointments with the ending, but not enough for me to really be upset. I think a lot of people aren't really thinking things through, or they just don't know the history of the show. Sorry, guys, but all this has happened before, and it will happen again... you should have done a little research when you heard that the first time.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Let's talk Shogun Warriors.

The Shogun Warriors were a really cool toy when I was a kid. I actually saved up my lawn mowing money and bought Raideen myself, the first major toy I did that for. I had no access to the fledgling anime market making the rounds, syndicated on independent channels, so only the commercials I'd see on Saturday morning TV fed my imagination for these Jumbo Machinders, these giant robots who would eventually be the progenitors of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and more importantly, Dynaman.

Occasionally you can catch people putting their Dynaman clips up on Youtube. The only ones I can find nowadays are the clips from the episode The Lizard of Oz. Originally, see, when Saban Entertainment brought the whole sentai culture to the US, he was trying to market it as a comedy, with lines redubbed with insanely funny dialogue that had little to do with the original plot. In fact, a couple of the Kids in the Hall were responsible for the original episodes, which contrary to what you might read on the internet, didn't premiere on Night Flight... they were syndicated.

I'm thinking they take down the Dynaman clips on Youtube because they'd really like to release the Dynaman eps on DVD but can't while they're not protecting their copyright. But then again, why don't they go ahead and release the eps? Probably music rights. The original Dynaman parodies were so well put together that they had an epic 80s soundtrack to them. "Hip To Be Square," by Huey Lewis. "Kids Wanna Rock," by Bryan Adams. It was so In The Moment with 80s pop culture, I have no idea why it didn't originally succeed. Later, Night Flight would employ its lesser talented staff to make new eps. The Power Rangers followed a few years after, and were a hit.

But as far as I can tell, this all started way back when with the Japanese Spider-man series. Toei Studios (who I believe were responsible for many of the super sentai series) bought the rights to Spider-Man in Japan at the same time that the US show starring Nicholas Hammond was making the rounds. As fondly as I remember that show, I really wish Supaidaman was the one I'd been weaned on. Because it is screwed up.

One of the things I used to like to do, before the Power Rangers ruined it, is make my friends watch the original (well... American-dubbed original) Dynaman and watch them freak out when suddenly there's a giant freakin' robot in the middle of everything. That kind of originated with Supaidaman... yes, Spider-Man had a giant robot. Leopardon, who knows where he got that name from.

My point in all of this is that if you have patience for subtitles, you can enjoy the Japanese take on Spider-Man right now on Marvel's website. They are streaming eps every week, with the subtitles, although somehow it's more enjoyable not knowing what's going on. Currently my brothers and I are trying to find a way to Dynaman the Japanese Spider-Man... I have one of the most talented female voice-talents willing to do voices for me, plus I'm not a stiff myself. Hopefully we can get something going, if we can figure out enough jokes and a storyline. And a soundtrack.

In the meantime, freak yourself out to the first episode!

And here's the third ep!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Next time on Battlestar Fawlty

Basil gives his Colonial Viper a damn good thrashing.

Other awesome Star Trek Mashups

While I quite like my own mashup of Shatner's Common People, I found this one to be freakikng hilarious.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The return of Beanworld

I'm not sure exactly how to describe Beanworld. I don't think you can. The creator of Beanworld, Larry Marder, has many different catchphrases for it (by the way, did you know "catchphrase" is the only English word with six consonants in a row? useful for Trivial Pursuit or Jeopardy). Perhaps a video would help out....

The Chow Raid from fashionbuddha on Vimeo.

Okay that didn't help out. What happened was the Beans went on a "Chow Raid" after their spiritual leader, GranMa'Pa (the tree) gave them a Sprout Butt... after beating up on a Hoi-Polloi ring that contained delicious Chow (which the Hoi-Polloi use to gamble, but the Beans need for food) they left the sweetened Sprout Butt for the Hoi-Polloi to sing sweet songs to it and inspire it to sacrifice itself and dissolve into Chow to replace what they'd lost. Then the Beans went back to Beanworld, put the stolen Chow in the Chowdown Pool and had dinner, soaking up nutrients and vitamins in a community bath.

I know. That didn't help out either. But for me, the late 80s and early 90s were made much brighter with the addition of Tales of the Beanworld. I'm glad to say that Beanworld has returned! I hold in my hands the first collection of those comics, in HARDBACK even, and it's still as creative and imaginative as it used to be. It's not for everybody... certainly not for the super-hero crowd... but if you are into things like the Monomyth (the path of the hero), Native American mythology, independent comics, or Marcel Duchamp, you should spend the twenty bucks and buy the new hardback. It's definitely worth it. And keep up with Larry at his blog...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

In the not too distant future...

I'm watching Eagle Eye right now, and basically it's a rip-off of Warren Ellis' Global Frequency, with what seems to be a crazy HAL-ish computer in charge of stuff and normal people who aren't really Agents as Agents. So now seems a perfect time to talk about MST3k.

So my interest in horror show hosts stemmed originally from reading about them in Famous Monsters. That led to interest in Elvira, mainly because she wasn't syndicated to our market, and of course the stuff you can't have is the stuff that must be good. (It wasn't until this year that I actually saw an episode of Movie Macabre, thanks to Amazon's video on demand service, and to say I was unimpressed and disappointed is a bit of an understatement. Despite what I've read in various magazines, I've only seen a monologue-driven horror movie commentary punctuated by a... random sound effect (weird) given by an emo Valleygirl prototype with big hooters. Not interesting to me.) After that was Monsterpiece Theatre, if you read my soppy, teen-angst ridden previous post. But of course after that was MST3k.

Anybody reading this doesn't need to know the background on MST3k, or a history lesson. They may need to know about its descendants. One is Rifftrax, by Michael Nelson, Kevin Murphy (Tom Servo Mk.2) and Bill Corbett (Crow Mk.2). I'm not as hot on that one, because it involves a lot of fiddle-faddlery starting DVDs and then starting commentary...a bit like watching The Wizard of Oz with Dark Side of the Moon playing. I enjoy their shorts, which you can download with the riffing, but I'm not going through all the trouble of all those shenanigans.

Cinematic Titanic, however, is another story. Joel Hodgson, Trace Beaulieu (Crow Mk.1, Dr. Clayton Forrester), J. Elvis Weinstein (Tom Servo Mk.1, Dr. Ernhardt), Frank Conniff (formerly TV's Frank, now DVD's Frank), and Mary Jo Pehl (Dr. Forrester Mk.2, all henceforth collectively known as the Titans) got together and are again doing silhouetted movie riffing, and it's pretty damn good.

So far, there've been six DVDs released. Plus, a tour. I went to the tour both nights (different movies riffed) that they performed in Boston at the Somerville Theatre. I had originally planned to walk to the shows, as it wasn't really that far... but the inclement (cold and effing windy) weather convinced me to just Find Parking. Which I did, easily somehow, both nights.

The first night was a hoot. Except for being stood up by my friend, something which I'm not going to write about except for that one bit there. Anyway, the show was awesome; Blood of the Vampires, which was supposed to take place in 1920's Mexico but was filmed in the Phillippines, and has many actors in blackface. BLACKFACE. After the show, I did not stay to meet the Titans, as I was back into a sour mood after being entertained for two hours.

The second night I met up with a work-mate to see the show. Unfortunately, I knew this meant I was not getting Pictures With The Titans, because I knew he'd probably take off for beers after the show, which he did. But we both had a really good time; sitting in the mezzanine seats was pretty uncomfortable, but It seemed to give a better view than my seats from the previous night. The Dynamite Brothers was a cross between Kung-fu and Blaxsploitation movies. And it was glorious.

And then there was the after-show. Well, of course I managed to make a stammering mess of myself tonight at the second show when I met the Titans.

When I got to Trace he gave me A Look. I'm used to getting Looks, because I'm 6'2" and 360... I'm a very large, imposing and to some people scary looking guy. Like, this could be your typical MST3k/CT/comicbook/scifi/comedy nerd, or he could also be a dangerous stalker. I think he correctly saw that I was really nervous and was trying to lighten me up, which he did. He also commented that he liked the Superman t-shirt I was wearing.

Honestly, I've never been this nervous meeitng famous people. I actually get to meet a lot of famous people in my job. I work for the "we play everything" radio station in town, like the one Josh did a bit about; so far this past year I've met Rainn Wilson from The Office, Paul Stanley, Phil Donahue, Phil Collen from Def Leppard, Simon Pegg... none of them made me nervous at all. But I've been a fan of MST3K since season 2... this was like meeting my comedy gods.

I moved on to Josh, got a signature, complimented him on the songs. More about Josh in a moment. Mary Jo was very sweet to me and I think she could tell I was quite nervous because at this point I think I may have just been talking in vowels. I had taken one of the DVD covers out of the 20th anniversery MST3k box set to get signed, only I was using the inside of the cover, which is perfect for getting autographs, but she hadn't seen it before and when she realized what it was she said "Oh cool, I haven't seen this yet... " which kind of made me squee a little.

Frank was cordial, but I just wanted to get through so I just asked for an autograph.

Joel was also very nice. Actually I did want to get a photo with him, but my friend had to bail so I had nobody to take the photo for me, and besides that, like I told Joel, photos of me with famous people usually wind up looking like "Joel Hodgson was accosted by a homeless person for money in Davis Square today... he said he wasn't going to spend it on liquor, but he did."

So far what's really been the most pleasant surprise of CT, especially the live shows, is how great Josh is. I think the role of voicing Tom Servo probably kept his performance limited, and I never really got enough of a sense of his personality. He really shines through on stage, and was very nice to me despite me being a stuttering fanboy. It makes me glad that they're actually not doing characters like on MST3k, so they're not limited in how they can riff. Still, some kind of host segment that's not silhouetted is something I'd love to see in the future, if the budget ever allowed for it.

All in all it was a pleasant show. Probably the biggest laugh for me was their reaction to the "n-bomb" that got dropped near the opening of the movie. Well co-ordinated. I wonder how that'll translate to DVD...

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Who's gonna watch The Watchmen

Is it weird now that it's an American dream to be a blogger? As far as I know, most people who do this for a living aren't making a ton of scratch from it. But just being able to pontificate and feel important because YOU HAVE AN OPINION and then get paid for it... well, that's much better than bagging groceries at the Piggly Wiggly, I guess. So I know from my statistics that I get some traffic here, and if people do read the blog, I assume they're geeky like me, into sci-fi, comics, and other geek traditions.

I am about to drop in readership significantly.

I don't care about The Watchmen. I'm not excited about it. I didn't like the comic book and I think Fox has every right to try to stop the film from release until Warner Brothers gives them some money.

Sorry, there, I said it.

The honest truth is that, while I appreciate what Alan Moore was trying to do with his epic tale, which seems to be the deconstructing of the super-hero fantasy and placing such ideas in the real world... sure, it's great, and I'm glad he did it, but I think it's been done better since... even by Moore himself.

When I first read The Watchmen, I wasn't that into complex comics... to be honest there weren't a lot of them out there, if you didn't live near a comic book shop. In fact my first real introduction to that kind of epic storyline was Sandman #8... I'd had my father picking up Comic Buyer's Guide for me when he went to the 'big city' of Lexington, KY, and for a few months all anybody could talk about was a new horror comic called Sandman, written by some guy I'd never heard of. Well, once I turned 16 and got my license, I finally began to (occasionally, as I was poor) going to Lexington myself, and one of my first trips to the comic shop saw me purchasing this comic book.

I remember sitting in my car behind the shop after buying it. I'd read so many reviews and seen so many blurbs that I had to see what it was about. After I was done, I went in and bought the other seven issues.

This began my introduction to "indie" comics, like Tales of the Beanworld, Zot!, Nexus, The Elementals and more. Eventually I began tracking down other well-reviewed indie comics, starting with Alan Moore's other epic story, Miracleman.

Wow. Just, wow. The whole idea of taking an antiquated super-hero like that and asking "What if they really existed? What if we took super-hero physics and applied them to our world?

"What would it be like if these gods walked among us?"

The savage Kid Miracleman was unparalleled violence in comics, at the time, and it was also so amazingly good. Yes! This is what they would be like. Superman wouldn't be a Boy Scout, he'd take what he wanted. He'd find all the Kryptonite in the world and hide it on Europa and make sure we were never able to get to it.

So, it was around 1995 that I first read The Watchmen. My general response today would have been "Meh." I really only liked the Dr. Manhattan stuff, because Alan Moore was taking quantum theory (as it was at the time) and twisting it up and that was fun, but all the other stuff just bored me.

I've tried since to get into the series, but it never resonates with me. It feels like a relic. Perhaps it is.

That said, the movie looks pretty decent from what I've seen. Warner Brothers reportedly isn't being completely faithful to the story, but come on, do we really need a giant squid, guys? Eh, some people are bunchin' their panties up about that, I'm not. But all in all, Warner Brothers looks to be doing a smashing job on the movie.

And here comes Fox to fuck it up!

Okay, here's where I differ from the fanboys crying for a boycott of Fox to protest what they're doing. Are Fox being dicks? Absolutely. And they have every rights to be dicks about it because they still own the rights to distribute the movie. Why Warner Brothers would even contemplate putting this into production without first securing the rights is beyond me. Would it be okay for me to film and distribute a sequel to The Dark Knight without securing the rights to the characters? No it wouldn't.

Fox is completely within their rights to get compensation for a movie adaptation that they still own the distribution rights to. Warner Brothers should have locked this down a long time ago, and yes, it would have cost them a pretty penny. But now that penny is going to be much, much prettier.

That said, I'll still go see the movie, if only to oggle Dr. Manhattan's Smurf junk.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Batman: The Brave and the Bold

Have I mentioned how shocked I am at Batman: The Brave and the Bold?

When Cartoon Network first announced the series, my eyes rolled into the back of my skull so quick you'd have thought I was a slot machine. A new animated Batman series that looks more based on the Adam West-era Batman than the current, angsty version that Paul Dini and company had kept alive and on the air? Who's going to watch that?

Besides, I'd already been disappointed with two other "cutesy" animations of the DC Universe... the Legion of Super-Heroes didn't do anything for me, and while Teen Titans wasn't bad, all I really cared about was Puffy Ami Yumi's super-cool theme song (a song I'd totally do at karaoke). Cutesy just didn't work for me anymore.


The show had me from the first clip I saw online. And frankly, Even just hearing the super-jazzy theme song and opening titles, and I realized that there's nothing wrong with a Batman that's not grimacing all the time and trying to figure out what level of raspy is appropriate for his voice. There's nothing wrong with a Batman that was... well, fun.

The best thing about the show is what promise it holds for fans of the DC universe... you're practically guaranteed every week team-ups with others from the DC Universe, both heroes AND villains, similar to the also-excellent Justice League: Unlimited. So far we've seen the current Blue Beetle, Firestorm, the Green Lantern Corps, and R. Lee Emrey voicing Wildcat. WILDCAT.

I mean, he teamed up with B'wana Beast in the episode I just watched. B'wana Beast.

It's an incredibly fun show with an incredibly fun, retro score to it that I really hope gets released as some sort of soundtrack, similar to the very excellent Batman Beyond. I could listen to that all day, never mind what I'd do with it at my job.

Fridays on Cartoon Network at 8 PM EST. Put it on Tivo, just once, why doncha?

Monday, January 5, 2009

Doctor Who???

I'm not sure how to react to Matt Smith being named the next Doctor Who.

Of course the cutesy approach is also appropriate... "Doctor WHO?" Meaning, who the fuck is this guy. I have to say, as much as I want to chime in with all of the complaints... he's too young, he's too emo, look at that hair... I really don't feel it in my bones. After all, I thought Tennant looked perfectly silly when he first showed up. And I would not have thought the other guy was appropriate either, until I saw him in the role.

I guess it all boils down to how they'll write the character. Will he still be aloof, mysterious, with just a streak of viciousness now and again? Will he be too goofy? Will he be too serious?

But to be honest, the real thing that matters, to me at least, isn't going to be who's playing The Doctor... it's going to be a.) first and foremost, the stories, and b.) nearly as important, the companion. Yes, I'm one of those weird ones that frets more over the companion than I do The Doctor.

Rose was a wonderful companion, but she left at the right time. A big part of me didn't want to see her come back (particularly when she did come back and seemed to have one hell of an overbite or something). And Martha... well, Martha was shocking to me, because I began to realize that deep down inside of me somewhere, I was a little bit racist.

It's true. Sure, it wasn't a "join the Klan let's burn a cross" racism, but a part of me couldn't believe that they could pull off a black companion with The Doctor. In this day and age, I felt that. Now, a black Doctor? I don't think I'd have a problem with that. If I can accept a black Ford Prefect, a black Doctor isn't a problem. But somehow the companion... it just wouldn't fit for some reason.

After the second episode I'm glad to say my doubts were gone, and I couldn't believe that there was a time that I felt otherwise. Still, it was disconcerting to find even a sliver of racism in me.

On to Donna Noble. I know it's fashionable to say "I warmed up to her" or "Well she irritated me at first" or "It's about time somebody stood up to The Doctor," but holy hell did I hate that screeching harpy. To me... to me it felt like she was getting a free ride because of her comedy element. She was distracting in her first episode and distracting when she returned. Shrill, obnoxious, not likeable at all.

So for me, this young pretty boy dilemma is really a non-issue. Sure, he looks like he just stepped out of a screening of Twilight. Tell me who the companion will be, and I'll tell you whether I need to worry.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

BluRay dieting & Doctor WHO?

I tell myself that I will not allow a collection of BluRay Discs to form and amass and get out of control like my DVDs did. After getting a first generation DVD player from my workplace (and breaking several laws doing it, I might add), my collection once neared 750. Mind you, a lot of them were garbage, but I like watching garbage.

So when I got my PS3 (part of a bundle for my HDTV) I made the promise that only timeless classics (to me anyway) would be bought. At first, the purchase of three discs were enough:

Alice Cooper, Live at Montreux 2005: an actual Alice Cooper concert shot in HD at the Montreux festival. It was from the Dirty Diamonds tour, an album I didn't hate but didn't particularly find appealing, as opposed to the previous AC album, The Eyes of Alice Cooper, which was phenomenal. Timeless Alice Cooper concert classics like Steven, Ballad of Dwight Frye and Welcome to my Nightmare mixed with newer classics like What Do You Want From Me... and even a gem from the album From The Inside appears... a rarity.

The Omega Man: to me, the best part of the Charlton Heston sci-fi trilogy of the late 60s/early 70s (the other two being Planet of the Apes and Soylent Green). Nothing says I'm a Product of the 70s like this movie. kind of like Return of the Living Dead epitomized the 80s for me, or The Crow for the 90s. Albino vampires and the immortal, lovely Rosalind Cash with my favorite movie quote ever: "Don't screw up. I know how to roll, but it's hard on the elbows. And if you just have to play James Bond, I'll bust your ass." Plus an incredible score that I was fortunate enough to snag a copy of when it was released on a limited edition CD recently.

Dark City: Alex Proyas' masterpiece as it was meant to be, and probably the disc I've watched the most. I love the fact that Roger Ebert did a new commentary for the new release, just as he did for the original DVD release. And it's just as interesting to listen to.

Well, after these first three purchases, I was content to skip buying new discs until The Dark Knight came out, and I admit I'm not against making more purchases... but unlike DVD, they'll need to be very very limited to my Most Favourite Things. So, some Star Trek movies? Perhaps. Shock Treatment, Rocky Horror and Little Shop of Horrors, yes, if they're ever issued. Whatever Happened To Baby Jane? would be a favorite. But probably no Godzilla movies; no Britcoms, no TV shows (except Spaced and Wonderfalls) and no really bad movies.

However, I'm content to put them on my Wish List and let my family buy them for me. Yesterday my brother's Christmas gift finally arrived:

Young Frankenstein: the funniest Mel Brooks movie ever, and his most perfect. Now don't get me wrong, I know that this is pretty much tied with Blazing Saddles among Brooks fans, and I can't deny how important a movie like Blazing Saddles was and is; there's no way you could make a Western Comedy nowadays where an old lady tells the black sherriff, "Up yours, nigger!" But Young Frankenstein is simply perfect. It is a perfect love song written to the James Whales movies, which you don't even have to have seen to appreciate. It's also genuinely funny, no matter how many times you've seen it; who can't crack up at PUDDDDINONDARIZZZZZZZZ?

2001: Stanley Kubrick's super-boring movie is also one of the best science fiction stories ever, both in movie form and in Arthur C. Clarke's novel (and even going further back, to the original short story, The Sentinel), and it looks especially good on BluRay. The new documentaries that come with it are snazzy too; that's always been my favourite bit of DVDs, the docs you get with older films.

Terminator 2: Judgement Day: Who doesn't love this movie? I don't think they actually did any special HD recoding or anything for this edition, but damn, does it look pretty in HD. It's making me want to get another 5.1 setup though, because neither the Dolby or DTS mixes properly transmit the soundtrack on my HDTV.

OH! I didn't mention the best thing about the Young Frankenstein disc... besides the new docs, it has an isolated score! So now I gotta dig through all my old shit and find my MiniDisc recorder and make a copy.

I was going to talk about the new Doctor Who also, but this post has gone on long enough, I'll post about it next time.