Thursday, February 26, 2004

Toys, Toys, Toys

Optimus Prime

I walked around the store for quite awhile this morning with the 20th Anniversary Optimus Prime shown here. I do like it so very much. I just couldn't stomach plunking down the $63 that Wal-Mart wanted for it. It's a big sucker, and pretty heavy due to the large number of die-cast parts, but it's still just a toy, and I have two other Optimus Prime's already, soooo...

...I put it back and looked for other things that I might need, which brought me to the Boba Fett figure at the right which I bought instead.

Boba Fett

I feel much better about that purchase, as it didn't cost me $63, and he goes well with the Han Solo I bought awhile back.

Speaking of Toys, I saw some of the figures for the new Van Helsing movie that stars Hugh Jackman. They're by the shittiest of all toy companies that do such licenses, Jakks Pacific. Jakks also handles the WWE toys, and only sometimes manages to somehow put together a moderately good figure. Most of them turn out looking nothing like the people they are supposed to be, with the company using head molds from older figures with only minor corrections for other people. I think it's time they moved into this decade with their sculpting and design work.

Take, for instance, the Dracula figure from the Van Helsing line:
What the hell are they going for here? Is he shocked about something? Is he retarded? What's with the albino flying mouse?

I haven't seen the movie, but I seriously doubt that this is what the character looks like in it.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Latest Viewing

Disinformation the Series
Disinformation the Series

Latest Viewing

Chapelle Show
The Chapelle Show

I got an EKG, Yaaay

Went to the hospital the other day. Was having trouble breathing, and had an erratic heartbeat. I'm fine now, feeling much better, but here are some observations from the Emergency Room.

    None of the nurses looked anything like Maura Tierney, or Julianna Margulies.

    I was in examination room #23 for those followers of Robert Anton Wilson.

    It is not pleasant when a nurse is taking blood and bumps into the needle while she's fumbling for the different vials. It hurts and it leaves a big bruise.

    I saw the doctor for a grand total of about three minutes.

That's all for now.

Latest Viewing

The Missing
The Missing

McFarlane goes down in court

Neil Gaiman has finally won his protracted lawsuit against Todd McFarlane over the ownership of the characters Angela, Cogliostro and Medieval Spawn. He also is going forward with plans to re-publish the Miracleman books [guess I should sell my two trades while I can still get that phat cash for them].

Neil's even got links to the Judgement in .pdf and audio of the oral arguments.

Maybe more on this later.

Back Again

Well, the sites back after a few days of being down while the domain was being renewed and whatnot. I'll try to get up a wha' happen post here in a little while.

Thursday, February 19, 2004

Hulk Scared

Is it just me, or does Hulk look incredibly frightened in this picture?

Waiting for Wednesday

Countdown to Wednesday: An Inside Look At the Comic Book Biz & How to Break In
Countdown to Wednesday: An Inside Look at the Comic Book Biz & How to Break In

A documentary largely filmed with people from Top Cow studios talking about comic book production and how to break into the business.

Reasonably informative, if a little bit on the bland side. I like the Mark Waid segments, and the Paul Dini parts as well as Marc Silvestri, they were all good.

Some of the information in the film inaccurate or no longer accurate. For instance there is no more Marvel Epic imprint, and the neglect to mention in their definition of Trade Paperbacks that they also can be standalone stories that were not published as individual issues, but those are minor little gripes of mine.

Man Jim MacLaughlin looks like a guy that gets punched in the face a lot.

Silent Bob Set to Bring Green Hornet to Big Screen

Here is a story that says that Kevin Smith has been tapped by Mirimax to write and direct a Green Hornet film. Well allright. Here's hoping that he'll move the camera a bit for what should be an action intensive film.

Now it remains to see if this puppy will actually get made.

Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Latest Viewing

Lost in La Mancha
Lost in La Mancha

A funny and sad film that shows the destruction from within and without of Terry Gilliam's production of "The Man Who Killed Don Quixote." Watch as F-16's ruin shots by repeatedly flying over the set. Marvel as the weather turns sour. Be astounded as the lead actor gets too ill to continue.

The film makes connections to Gilliam's earlier problematic production The Adventures of Baron Munchauesen and also to Orson Wells unfinished version, and includes much of the small amount of footage that was actually shot for the film.

It's too bad that the didn't get made, but hopefully if the interest remains high enough someone will finally give him enough money to let him make the damn thing.

Latest Viewing

Backyard Wrestling Superstar Series
Backyard Wrestling Superstar Series: A Passion For Pain

Somehow I'd avoided seeing any of the Backyard Wrestling tapes up until now. After seeing this one I'm still not impressed, but at least there is something of worth here.

Don't go into this expecting to see any actual matches or angles or anything resembling a narrative structure. What there is is a clip show of high spots, often the same ones from a surprising number of different angles.

This tape shows the progression of two backyard wrestlers from their beginnings knocking the hell out of each other in an actual backyard to their own independent promotion to their eventual professional debut.

Say what you will about the backyard wrestlers, the two guys here are talented. The XPW footage with them against Mexico's Most Wanted [Damien and Halloween], Confederate Currency Chris Hamrick, and the Spanish Announce Team and Amazing Red are the highlights of this DVD. There is actually some pretty amazing stuff in there, with one spot where one of them reverses a sunset flip into a tarantula being just downright amazing to me.

There's also some half-assed Jackass knockoff stuff in there which is forgettable at best.

Possibly worth a rental, but I spent the majority of the time fast forwarding through.

Latest Viewing


This movie wants to be too many things, and in the end is lesser for it.

What it wants to be is a Independence Day/Matrix/Transformers/Blade Runner/Terminator/Gangster Film. It's the story of Millie, who comes back through time to stop an alien invasion.

There are some interesting effects scenes of the future and the aliens, and a bit of the bullet time, but these are really just window dressing on a yakuza revenge story.

It looks nice, but there's just not much there underneath. That and the piano pieces in the score sound a bit too much like they were lifted from American Beauty.

Worth a rental, but not much more.

Crotchety Old Man


The most annoying thing about this book is the quality of Wolfe's storytelling.

I bought this book on CD at the same time as Hogan's biography and also Blackhawk Down and Gonzo Marketing. They were all on sale at Hasting's and I thought that at the very least they would be more entertaining and engaging than the local talk radio channel.

Wolfe is a talented speaker and his words don't seem stunted and unnatural like Hogan's, but despite the quality of the presentation I don't think I'll be finishing this one.

The first section read by Wolfe was enough for me to give up on it. While I enjoy the "Boy the world's sure gone to hell" talk as much as the next guy [more so, in fact] spending almost an hour listening to it is a bit more than I can put up with. The fact that there are five more discs after this one is daunting indeed.

The section that turned me off is what Wolfe says is a free association of ideas to serve as a type of verbal time-capsule of what life is like here at the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st.

Pretty much Wolfe thinks it's pretty shitty.

I mean, look at all these kids and thier having of the sex and their baggy pants and their body piercings and their rap music. Look at all those dot com billionaires and their PDA's and cell phones and their casual clothes and their lack of work ethic. They don't carry attache cases and have the audacity to call them leather lunchboxes. Why, feminism and the sexual revolution have made it where guys can just get sex anytime and not worry about it and then they don't even have to get married or anything.

You get the picture.

This goes on for quite some time, and I just went ahead and put in something else after awhile.

Maybe it's because I belong to the generation largely responsible for what Wolfe is bitching about, but...

One particular thing that bothers me in his rant is when he uses blanket generalizations and forgets the fact that even with the widespread influence of various social memes that he describes, things such as terminology regarding sex [specifically in his examples] do not hold true across the board and across the country.

He refers to things like alphabet codes for different sexual encounters that girls use, but while I realize that I am not an adolescent girl, I am reasonably plugged in and down wi' it to know that I've never heard the terms he referred to. [I would imagine it's rather difficult to do deep investigation of adolescent sexual habits and terminology when you are an old, old man].

It just strikes me that he sounds like he didn't get much action when he was younger and now wants to bitch about people who do.

It does leave me to wonder where all this sex and drugs were when I was in High School. Maybe I just wasn't let into the proper clubs. [you mean that chess club geeks don't get lots of sex?]

The Talking Brain

Bobby the Brain
Bobby the Brain: Wrestling's Bad Boy Tells All by Bobby Heenan and Steve Anderson

In my continuing effort to read each and every one of the old school wrestling 'autobiographies' I picked up this book yesterday and finished it up today. It's a bit of a mixture of Piper's ramblings with Blassie's history.

You don't get a lot of Bobby's history outside the ring in this book, beyond a little bit of info on his family and battle with cancer. What you do get is quite a few anecdotes about guys he wrestled and managed over the years including the Bruiser, sheik and Hogan. He talks at length about his days in the AWA and the WWF and rips into the lack of organization in WCW and in particular Tony Schiavone.

This also stands as the third wrestler book [along with Hogan and Blassie] that tells the story of the Verne Gagne offering the Iron Sheik $100,000 to cripple Hogan in the ring and come back to the AWA with the WWF title.

This is a pretty good book if you like Bobby, and does a good job of telling the story in the voice of the Brain. Not exactly dense reading, but good for an afternoon.

Barcode Yourself

By way of BoingBoing

Brand yourself with your very own barcode. Here's mine:

Tuesday, February 17, 2004

New Phone

There's a commercial on for a company called "New Phone" on right now with a girl talking in one of the worst fake southern accents I've ever heard [the worst is Keanu Reeve in The Devil's Advocate]. She even makes sure to say something along the lines of "...why that's plum ridiculous."

You know what, as a person who has used that particular statement before I call shenanigans on her inflections. If she's from the south she doesn't have a real accent and is having to put one on in the same way that every drama kid in high school had their put on British accent.

I find that type of commercial to be condescending, and I don't really see a place for it. If it was a real testimonial that would be one thing, but it is so obviously trying to cater to the hick crowd that I, a certified Slackjawed Yokel and plum offended.


Super Patriot American Freak, a fine song, by way of DiePunyHumans

Does water go out of date?

You know this was something that I've asked about at work, but nobody could really give me an answer there either.

From AOL Finance News:

A Little Secret About Bottled Water
Containers Say It Expires,
But Evidence for That Is Scant;


But does water really spoil? Despite the labels reminding consumers to drink up, there is virtually no evidence that drinking water beyond the expiration date has any health impact at all. The Food and Drug Administration considers bottled water to have an "indefinite shelf life." Even the bottled-water industry is hard-pressed to justify the labels.

"There's no real rationale," says Jane Lazgin, a spokeswoman for Nestle Waters North America Inc., a division of Nestle SA that bottles brands including Poland Spring and Ice Mountain, and imports European waters such as Perrier and Vittel. The practice "is not health-based," she adds.

Still, some shoppers are heeding these directives. If bottled water is past its expiration date, "there's probably something wrong with it," says John Bohan, a 39-year-old father of three in Los Angeles who drinks only bottled or filtered water. "I would drink bad tap water over post-dated bottled water."

There must be something wrong with it, they wouldn't just put those dates on the package to get you to buy more water, now, would they? I mean, since other things go out of date, shouldn't water? Of course not, otherwise our entire water supply would have gone out of date a loooong time ago. I mean, look at all that water just sitting out there in lakes and ice and whatnot, we better drink that up before it goes all bad.

Who do we have to blame this on?

To some degree, the fact that bottled water carries expiration dates can be blamed on New Jersey, the only state that officially requires it. That regulation dates back to 1987, though it's not completely clear what prompted it. The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services says only that: "The intent of the law was to protect the safety and quality of drinking water."

The industry says that, given the New Jersey law, it's easier -- and cheaper -- for water companies to stamp dates on every bottle, whatever the destination, than to do it selectively. "That's why you'll see it, so you don't have a hodge-podge of labels going to different states," says Stephen Kay of the International Bottled Water Association, an industry trade group. (A handful of other states, including New York, Michigan and Louisiana, require manufacturers to stamp packages with the bottling date, but don't insist on expiration dates.)

I bet this has something to do with the mob. It's not like anything would taste any better no matter what you do in Jersey, what with the Jersey smell. It's pretty much like anything in Calhoun, TN tastes like rotten eggs due to the Bowater Paper Mill there.

And there is one quote buried near the end of the story that I think needs a little attention.

"I don't think it would be a safety problem, but more of a quality issue," says Michael P. Doyle, director of the Center for Food Safety at the University of Georgia. "We've had some water that tasted like stale milk."

If the water tastes like stale milk, then I'd lean towards it being stale milk and not water. I've never had any water that tasted remotely like milk, except for when I re-filled that milk jug with tap water and then drank it. That tasted like milk, because it was partly milk.

Milk does expire, let me tell you.

Saturday, February 14, 2004

Latest Viewing


It is a testament to Val Kilmer's acting ability that he is so frequently able to overcome bad dialogue to deliver a convincing performance.

Unlike previous films where he was able to melt into the role of a real person [Jim Morrison for example], there wasn't really a point in the film where I wasn't aware that I was watching Val Kilmer. He doesn't really look that much like John Holms, but that isn't really an issue, because this film isn't really about the porn star John Holmes. This is a crime story, one told from two opposing viewpoints.

The crime is the murder of four people in July of 1981 at a house on Wonderland Avenue in Los Angeles, and the involvement of pornstar John C. Holmes. It covers the period from just before the event up until Holmes flight to evade prosecution.

The first version of events comes from biker and ex-con David Lind [Dylan McDermott in a bad dye job and worse fake beard and sideburns which at times looked drawn in with makeup]. Lind tells cops a story of a crazy cocaine addled Holmes setting up a robbery on the Arab, a contact of Holmes' who later turns out to be night club owner and all around shady guy Eddie Nash. Holmes sets up the robbery to cover his outstanding debts to Lind's friends who live at the house on Wonderland. The robbery goes off, then Lind realizes who they were robbing, but by then it is too late. Later, while Lind is out, Holmes rats them out to Nash and brings in thugs who kill everyone at the house, including Lind's girlfriend.

The next version is told by Holmes, and he paints a different story, with Lind largely orchestrating the affair and Holmes being more or less used by everyone else, including Nash. In Holmes version he is forced to help in the killings even though he doesn't want to.

Framing this story are views of Holme's life with his girlfriend Dawn [the incredibly cute Kate Bosworth] and their interaction with John's straight laced wife [Lisa Kudrow].

The film is well put together and ably directed and has good performances from Kilmer and Bosworth, but they are only barely enough to overpower the bad dialogue and generally sub-par script. There is waaay too much exposition in the movie. Instead of long shots of exposition fading to the action there needed to be a little more overlap. It would have helped the flow of the film.

One thing I greatly enjoyed was the use of music in the film, with songs in the soundtrack fading into the background of the scene where they were being played on radios in scene, that was a nice little touch.

Janeane Garofalo makes an appearnace in the film, but she is relegated to about two lines, and I think she is one of the murder victims. The same is true of Christina Applegate, who gets about three lines.

All in all a passable crime film, but Boogie Nights will do you better for a John Holmes film.

Wadd: The Life and Times of John C. Holmes

This documentary is the second disc of the Wonderland set, and is one of those rare occasions where the supplemental material surpasses the film it comes with.

It covers John's life from birth to death, and does a pretty good job of presenting what I think is a fair portrayal of the man from the words of the people who knew him. You see his early marriage, his emergence as a pornstar, and his slide into drug abuse, involvement in the Wonderland murders and death from AIDS.

It definitely doesn't make John out to be a very nice guy.

There is good juxtapositioning of images in the film, such as where his second wife talks of how nice and good he was and their love for one another, and of his final days and want of cremation, with everyone else's take that he didn't really like her or care for her and that she shut his friends out at the end and didn't allow for a burial as they say he wanted.

Another good bit is where Bob Chinn, the director and creator of the Johnny Wadd films, talks of John's constant lies and then they cut to an interview from the 70s with Chinn and Holmes where Holmes is going on about blocking his own scenes then the question is asked of Chinn what he thinks of letting John block his own scenes, to which Chinn replies to John "I don't let you block your own sex scenes." John just continues on as he was saying unperturbed.

A very good documentary.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

Hollywood Speaks

Hollywood Hulk Hogan by Hulk Hogan and Michael Jan Friedman
Hollywood Hulk Hogan by Hulk Hogan and Michael Jan Friedman

I picked this one up as an Audio Book from the remainder table at Hastings yesterday, and let me tell you, brother, it exceeds every expectation that I had and moves into levels of pure unadulterated egomania--excuse me--Hulkamania, that I could never have imagined.

The audio book is an abridgment, but I doubt that I really missed that much from the actual 'book.' What I got instead was a dose of the Hulkster reading words that were only partially the Hulkster's, in a halting, I'm reading a book report that my mom wrote for me, kindof voice.

But that's good, because that lets me know that the Hulkster can actually read. (ba-dum-dum, thank you folks, I'm here all week).

This one starts the same as all of the WWE ghost-written memoirs, with a big match in the guys career and then flashes back over his life and times. The Hulkster recounts his childhood as a tormented fat-kid and lightly touches on the different eras of his wrestling career, all the while making sure that he is the center of the story and the engine driving sports entertainment.

There are some erroneous assertions here, such as Hogan saying that the Rock is the first wrestler to star in a film other than him (Piper did it as well), and he gives the impression that he was acting in the best interests of the wrestling industry in his last stint in WCW. He talks about how Vince Russo tried to downplay the older, established wrestlers in WCW in the Millionaire's club and wanted to push new guys (I would argue that some of the 'new' guys that Hogan was talking about, such as Booker T, Benoit, Chris Jericho, Jeff Jarrett, Scott Steiner, and others, were just as established there as Hogan, some had been wrestling with WCW longer). He complains that Russo had him lose three weeks straight to Billy Kidman and that he was only able to eke out a win at a PPV, but then Russo wrote Kidman out of storylines the week after and as a result weakened Hogan's character.

I think that it probably is true that Russo had it in for Hogan, but one thing that he doesn't seem to get, even after all these years in the business, is that it doesn't matter if you win or lose in the ring. You can lose nearly every big match in your career (much like Mick Foley or Sandman) and still remain a name, and have the fans care about you. It doesn't even really matter who you lose to, but rather how the match plays out and the quality of the work involved. Look at all the big guys that Spike Dudley beat in his Giant-Killer schtick from ECW, none of them lost heat because of it. If he had been game for it Hogan wouldn't have lost heat from losing to Kidman. The fact that Hogan himself didn't believe that it was possible for Kidman to beat him was the biggest detrimental factor to the program. If he doesn't believe it and make it work, it won't work.

Just because the guy is smaller or younger, or newer doesn't mean that he shouldn't be able to go over an established star. Benoit isn't a big guy, nor is Tazz, but we, as fans, wouldn't lose respect for someone like Hogan if they were beaten by them.

Oh, the book itself is so-so. It's alot like Piper's book, it makes sure to try to convince you that the world of wrestling would not exist if it were not for the titular character. I think that Hogan was a primary reason that wrestling boomed in the 80s and 90s, but I think that it was a combined effort of many factors. Hogan was a part, so was Piper, so was Flair, so was Jimmy Snuka, so was Vinne Mac. No one of them could have made everything work, but the combination of all of them (and Andre the Giant) made things work.

All in all I'd suggest you read the Freddie Blassie book instead.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Latest Viewing

IMDB Entry, official site

If I were to say that this is the movie that The Running Man could have been, would you consider that a good or a bad thing?

I think it's quite a good thing.

Slashers is set up as a Japanese reality TV gameshow where six contestants run from three Slashers for a cash prize. The slashers chase them through the danger zone composed of a hodge podge of generic horror film style settings. The slashers themselves are a variety of horror mainstays, such as the chainsaw wielding redneck Chainsaw Charlie, a ghoulish southern minister, Preacher Man [both charismaticly played by Neil Napier], and the mad surgeon Doctor Ripper. The movie is supposed to be the first foray of the show into America, and as such all of the contestants are American's who have come to Tokyo to compete.

The contestants are also a mix of stereotypes with the ex-marine tough guy, weasely computer programmer, stupid model, innocent cute girl, tough guy bouncer and extreme sport tough girl. None of the acting is particularly strong from this crew, but it serves its purpose, and if there had been an oscar caliber performance that would have upset the overall feel of the film, which does quite a good job of imitating the low budget feel of J-pop gameshows.

To keep the feel of the gameshow throughout the film, most of the action takes place in one long tracking shot with a steadi-cam, with cuts hidden by flickering lights and runs through darkened corridors, it is relatively seamless and edited together quite well.

This is to horror films what Kaiju Big Battel is to wrestling.

Give it a try if you like campy/gory films with a sense of humor about themselves.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

The Comics Code

Just as a refresher for all you cats out there, here's the original comics code that was followed by all major comics publishers up until recently (there were revisions made a few times over the years, but this is the original)

Comics CodeStandards of the Comics Code Authority for editorial matter as originally adopted

General Standards Part A:
Crimes shall never be presented in such a way as to create sympathy for the criminal, to promote distrust of the forces of law and justice, or to inspire others with a desire to imitate criminals.

No comics shall explicitly present the unique details and methods of a crime. Policemen, judges, government officials, and respected institutions shall never be presented in such a way as to create disrespect for established authority.

If crime is depicted it shall be as a sordid and unpleasant activity. Criminals shall not be presented so as to be rendered glamorous or to occupy a position which creates the desire for emulation.

In every instance good shall triumph over evil and the criminal punished for his misdeeds.

Scenes of excessive violence shall be prohibited. Scenes of brutal torture, excessive and unnecessary knife and gun play, physical agony, gory and gruesome crime shall be eliminated.

No unique or unusual methods of concealing weapons shall be shown.

Instances of law enforcement officers dying as a result of a criminal's activities should be discouraged.

The crime of kidnapping shall never be portrayed in any detail, nor shall any profit accrue to the abductor or kidnapper. The criminal or the kidnapper must be punished in every case.

The letter of the word "crime" on a comics magazine shall never be appreciably greater than the other words contained in the title. The word "crime" shall never appear alone on a cover.

Restraint in the use of the word "crime" in titles or subtitles shall be exercised.

General Standards Part B:
No comic magazine shall use the word "horror" or "terror" in its title.

All scenes of horror, excessive bloodshed, gory or gruesome crimes, depravity, lust, sadism, masochism shall not be permitted.

All lurid, unsavory, gruesome illustrations shall be eliminated.

Inclusion of stories dealing with evil shall be used or or shall be published only where the intent is to illustrate a moral issue and in no case shall evil be presented alluringly nor so as to injure the sensibilities of the reader.

Scenes dealing with, or instruments associated with walking dead, torture vampires and vampirism, ghouls, cannibalism, and werewolfism are prohibited.

General Standards Part C:
All elements or techniques not specifically mentioned herein, but which are contrary to the spirit and intent of the Code, and are considered violations of good taste or decency, shall be prohibited.

Profanity, obscenity, smut, vulgarity, or words or symbols which have acquired undesirable meanings are forbidden.

Special precautions to avoid references to physical afflictions or deformities shall be taken.

Although slang and colloquialisms are acceptable, excessive use should be discouraged and wherever possible good grammar shall be employed.

Ridicule or attack on any religious or racial group is never permissible.

Nudity in any form is prohibited, as is indecent or undue exposure.

Suggestive and salacious illustration or suggestive posture is unacceptable.

All characters shall be depicted in dress reasonably acceptable to society.

Females shall be drawn realistically without exaggeration of any physical qualities.
NOTE: It should be recognized that all prohibitions dealing with costume, dialogue, or artwork applies as specifically to the cover of a comic magazine as they do to the contents.

Marriage and Sex:
Divorce shall not be treated humorously nor shall be represented as desirable.

Illicit sex relations are neither to be hinted at or portrayed. Violent love scenes as well as sexual abnormalities are unacceptable.

Respect for parents, the moral code, and for honorable behavior shall be fostered. A sympathetic understanding of the problems of love is not a license for moral distortion.

The treatment of love-romance stories shall emphasize the value of the home and the sanctity of marriage.

Passion or romantic interest shall never be treated in such a way as to stimulate the lower and baser emotions.

Seduction and rape shall never be shown or suggested.

Sex perversion or any inference to same is strictly forbidden.

Code For Advertising Matter:
Liquor and tobacco advertizing is not acceptable.

Advertisement of sex or sex instructions books are unacceptable.

The sale of picture postcards, "pin-ups," "art studies," or any other reproduction of nude or semi-nude figures is prohibited.

Advertising for the sale of knives, concealable weapons, or realistic gun facsimiles is prohibited.

Advertising for the sale of fireworks is prohibited.

Advertising dealing with the sale of gambling equipment or printed matter dealing with gambling shall not be accepted.

Nudity with meretricious purpose and salacious postures shall not be permitted in the advertising of any product; clothed figures shall never be presented in such a way as to be offensive or contrary to good taste or morals.

To the best of his ability, each publisher shall ascertain that all statements made in advertisements conform to the fact and avoid misinterpretation.

Advertisement of medical, health, or toiletry products of questionable nature are to be rejected. Advertisements for medical, health or toiletry products endorsed by the American Medical Association, or the American Dental Association, shall be deemed acceptable if they conform with all other conditions of the advertising code.

I suggest that the FCC adopt this code for broadcast media right now! There is too much hanky-panky on my TV and on my radio. I do not have the ability to filter material myself as there is entirely too much pop music buzzing about me near incessantly.

Wasn't the near past just a quaint little time?

Tell me why this wouldn’t work.

What I’m envisioning is a system of distribution of television style content through direct DVD release. Say Warner Brothers has a new property that they’re developing and they go to shoot a pilot. They send it through the regular rigmarole of focus groups and whatnot, but then instead of slotting for air on the WB, they, instead release it into video chains and stores such as Blockbuster and Hollywood Video for rental.

They could include some making of featurettes to sweeten the deal and then watch the rental numbers for each title just as they would watch the Neilson's when they air the pilot on TV.

They could even go so far as bankrolling a short run, say three to six episodes and release them as a single disc.

Advertising could be sold in the form of non-skipable commercials [like movie trailers] at the beginning of each disc, and through product placement, thus covering most of the cost of production. With this system even shows that are perceived dogs at the outset could be released and bring in some amount of revenue.

This system would completely bypass the FCC and the MPAA. It would allow money to be made off of EVERY pilot shot out in tinsel-town (even the worst of the worst shows would be rented by somebody, look at all the people who rent Rob Schneider comedies). It would also allow for some creative latitude for the producers of the media, as they would be freed from the format imposed by television and would be free to make episodes as long or as short as they want and to explore different pacing and transitional styles.

If the rental numbers on a show do well further episodes and seasons could be ordered and then released for rental and eventually sold in stores.

Innovation of the media and evolution is what is needed, not further controls.

The FCC Done Lost Its Fool Mind

There was a story up Yesterday on Drudge about Federal Communications Commission Chairman Michael Powell considering holding a license revocation hearing against CBS after the Janet-Justin Titty incident

This amounts to saber rattling and attention grabbing in the worst kind of way.

I think this smacks of the FCC realizing that it is increasingly a dinosaur entity and that its stranglehold on the American broadcast media is precariously close to shattering.

Much as when Marvel Comics decided to ignore and drop the Comics Code Authority, the broadcast media have been flexing their muscles and straining the limits of what is acceptable/decent as defined by the FCC for quite some time. With the advent of Cable television and its lack of overall censors the broadcasters (CBS, ABC, NBC, Fox and to a lesser extent WB and Paramount) have found themselves losing viewers to programming on cable that does not have the government watching as closely over it (just as there was a shifting of many comic readers over to the more 'mature' DC lines and to the vertigo imprint specifically, when those books went codeless)

I think there is a laughable lunacy abounding in this nation when something like a bared breast is considered a source of great contention, but a game that glorifies violence is considered wholesome family entertainment. Don’t think that by that last statement that I’m declaring the Superbowl Halftime show wholesome family entertainment-I’m not, but I don’t think that the ACCIDENTAL flashing of a breast is something that should warrant even the possibility of revoking CBS’s right to broadcast (yes, I believe the official story that there was supposed to be a bra under there that ripped as well, she was wearing all black leather and most likely sweating, it is not out of the realm of possibility that the bra stuck to the leather cup). Do I believe that it was right for them to plan to have a costume reveal (how positively scandalous)? You know, I don’t even care, pop music is about the glorification of sex that you can’t possibly be having, so I’m ok with it.

I’ve seen and heard some of the fallout from this big flap-over-nothing is that MTV is quietly shifting some of its edgier videos into later slots (they still show videos in the daytime?), ER has decided not to show an old lady’s boob in a show, and NYPD Blue is editing a show to remove a love scene (but butts are still probably ok to show).

Hey, know what? They say shit sometimes on ER. Boy that sure does offend me. Just like an old-ladie's boob would have. You know what else offends me about that show, the fact that they showed Dr. Romano's arm getting chopped off by that helicopter. That show is just a hotbed of offensiveness.

I don’t remember electing the FCC or voting on what is deemed permissible for me to see and not to see. I hate to tell you, but I don’t think most of the kiddies really care about the Grammies or the Oscars that much anyway (both are running on a nice delay this year).

Sunday, February 08, 2004

Damndest Thing

I was just sitting here trolling the net, and Damned if the right lens of my glasses didn't just pop out into my lap.

That never happened with my old glasses, even though I beat them nigh unto death in the five years that I wore them. I've had these less than a year.

It used to happen alot with the glasses I had when I was a kid.

I had to scramble for something to screw the side of the glasses back together, luckily my handy Marlboro Miles Swiss-Army Knife had something small enough to do the job.

I guess I may have to buy one of those repair kits, or just stop taking all those punches to the face.


Does this look edible to anyone? Would you really want to eat one? I know that I've always been annoyed that there's no such thing as a big-ass hamburger-sausage link that comes served like a hotdog.

Faulty Prophecies

Got this from Gunny:

Day of our Lord due

Forty years ago I was told by the Lord God, "I'm Jesus!" A year ago I asked Paul Revere, pastor of Embassy of Heaven Church, Stayton, Ore., to make a worldwide announcement that: "Christ, the Lord is alive, living on the earth in the flesh. And based on Zephaniah 1:7, the day of the Lord would occur on Preparation Day for Passover, April 16, 2003. Paul answered my request by setting up the Web site,, containing personal information I had mailed him about myself and my prophecy

That prophecy turned out to be presumptuous and I am now prophesying that "The day of the Lord will occur on April 5, 2004! That day, prophesied over 2,600 years ago, will bring to a screeching halt all activity taking place in this world! For starters, money will be worthless, there will be no election this November and sports contests may be over!

My favorite part about that letter, not that it lays down the final day, but is that "...sports contests may be over!" Money will be worthless, there will be no election this November, and sports contests MAY BE OVER! Or, maybe not, it has not yet been decided on that one. Money, out. Election, out. Sporting events, maybe. God does like his football.

To save you the trouble of going to the Bible-Thumper site listed above, here are their conditions for salvation [take notes, God will be issuing a test early in April, and it WILL go on your permanent record]

Four Conditions for Salvation

ACCORDING TO Revelation 3:10, only members of the Church of Philadelphia will not be subject to the tribulation. Who are the members of that church? And how can one become a member?

Listen carefully and obey the following instructions.

    1. Repent. This is important. And read Zechariah 6:15 plus the Companion notes on this verse.

    2. Get yourself baptized. This time by immersion and by a minister of God who has cancelled his ministerial license. If not, you may be dragged into the Tribulation when 2 Thessalonians 2:3 occurs.

    3. Disconnect yourself from the world. Read 2 Corinthians 6:14; James 4:4; and 1 John 2:15-17. Owe no one anything but love per Romans 13:8. In other words, get "Out-of-Debt!" (see note*)

    4. Believe, by faith, that God's Son is alive, and is on the earth, today, in the flesh! Read 1 John 4:2.

Persons obeying the above 4 instructions will become members of the Church of Philadelphia, provided that they have never committed the "sin that leads to death" referred to in 1 John 5:16-17. Anyone who has committed that sin will have to go through the tribulation.

Firstly, I have to say that I can't listen to something that I'm reading, but that's mostly a semantic argument. From #2 I am to understand that only a minister who has cancelled his ministerial license is one who can be a member of the Church of Philedelphia, why so? Do they have to fill out some kind of form to do that, or can they just renounce their ministry? Why couldn't pretty much anyone fit the bill then?

If Frank over there is Jesus, then shouldn't he be getting a bit of a better marketing strategy? I hate to ridicule anyone for their beliefs, but...

Saturday, February 07, 2004

Tunak Tunak

I realize that this isn't anything new to the web, but it was new to me. I downloaded this video without really knowing what it was, and I still don't really, but I still enjoy it.

Click on the image at the left to be whisked away to the magical homepage of Daler Mehndi. Apparantly the type of music he sings is a fusion of pop and something called Rababi.

The Void at, has the audio for the song Tunak Tunak, or you can download the video from there as well [which I highly recommend for the full effect].

This is the type of foreign pop-music that I want to see make an upsurge here in the US, happy sounding songs sung by a chubby little man in flashy pimp-suits.


Thursday, February 05, 2004

For Me To Poop On


Go to to have Triumph the Insult Comic Dog to poop on your site, or the site of a friend. Spread the love, yo.

Seriously for a moment I must tell you that this album is an odd one to say the least. I think that this one is the first to fill that strangely vacant singing blue-comic hand-puppet dog niche. There are some nice bits with Conan O'Brian, Jack Black and even Adam Sandler.

The DVD is a nice little compilation as well. I could have done without the multiple five minute crank calls though, Crank Yankers does it better. The one with Triumph calling the Chinese Restaurant was longer than it needed to be, but the one about the doggie beds was good because it worked on so many levels [2].

In closing this is a wonderful album...for me to poop on.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

New Doctorow Book

Eastern Standard Tribe by Cory Doctorow
Cory Doctorow's new book, Eastern Standard Tribe is out and is available to purchase or Download for free from his website.

I haven't had the chance to read it yet, but I'll let you know what I think when I have.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Recent Searches and the Further Adventures of Ms. Janet's Nipple

In response to one of my most recent search string hits to find my site: Why is it so hard to find Corey Haim fan site?

Well nameless searcher who happened on my site with this inquiry [who has no doubt moved on since], the reason that it is so hard to find Corey Haim fan sites is the same reason that the earlier searcher no doubt found it difficult to find a place to buy Corey Haim hair. The reason is because it's not 1987. Now I don't want to sound harsh here, but it's probably time to move onto today's teen-pop idols, such as Orlando Bloom or the ever popular Johnny Depp. Leave the Corey's and the Leif Garret's in the past where they belong.

The disturbing thing is that I am the first non-Amazon site that showed up in the search.

Now that I've alienated one potential reader, on to what everybody wants, more about the boobies.

Thanks to Gunny and his links to better pictures of the incident, it is now apparent that we did, indeed see Ms. Janet's nipple on the half time show. The silver sun is a nipple shield. I guess that this is good information that has now been brought to our attention.

Here are some examples of pages selling shields like those worn by Janet here, here, and here. I guess it's not a cyborg fueling port as I earlier thought, but it is a fueling port of a type [wink-wink, nudge-nudge, say no more].

It's also good to see that if Janet Jackson's boob pops out on the Half-Time Show of the Superbowl it gets to be national news, and it's ok for Drudge to post close-up pictures. When that sort of thing happens at lesser sporting events people who rush to post close up pictures on the internet are called purveyors of smut, but, hey, who am I to judge?

Monday, February 02, 2004

Yes, But What About the Children?

I realize that quite a few people were upset about the baring of ninety percent of one of Janet Jackson's boob on the Half-Time show of the Super-Bowl yesterday, but I think that many of them are upset for all the wrong reasons.

Moral indignation over the audacity of showing a woman's breast aside, the real victims here are the children of the world. Children everywhere will see this image and think the wrong thing, and this error will be much to their detriment through life, and may even have a psychologically terrible effect over their entire lifetime.

I am referring, of course, to the fact that children [and idiots] everywhere will think that instead of having nipples, women have large silver, plastic stars. This could lead to thousands-nay-millions of children [and idiots] feeling inferior about their nipples and lead to confusion that will haunt them for the rest of their natural lives.

Or they might just think Ms. Janet is a cyborg. I'm moving towards that opinion myself. Perhaps Master Timberlake was only trying to show the world the secret that he's been harboring. Janet Jackson is a cyborg, a creation of science. What he revealed to the world was, in actuality a fueling port of some kind.

Thank you Justin Timberlake, thank you. Now the proper authorities at the FCC can take over.

Sunday, February 01, 2004

American Manga

It seems that DC comics is the only anglophile comic publisher that gets what it means to try to bridge the gap between Japanese Manga and American Comics, and they're only starting to take advantage.

It's been a noticeable trend at the chain bookstores that the smaller, less-expensive manga trades published by Tokyo-Pop and the like have been taking over the shelf space that used to be reserved for the traditional comic book sized trade-paperbacks of anglophile comics. The Manga has even been making gains on the shelf-space at stores like Books-A-Million. The big two comic publishers in the states [DC and Marvel] seem to have ceded the bookstore market just as they ceded the newsstand market.

When a big selling book for Marvel or DC can expect to go as high as say 200,000 copies in a month, but a Manga anthology sold on newsstands like Shonen Jump can sell 2 million copies a month, something is wrong.

I'm not going into the causes and cures right now, but I am heartened to see that DC has at least made an attempt to produce a product that can move into the Manga market. All of the companies attempts up till this point [including Marvel's smaller edition's of X-Men trades] have had the problem that they are not formatted the same as the traditional Manga trade. Marvel and DC and the other American companies simply shrink their existing trades to a close approximation of the Manga dimensions. They forget that part of the appeal of the Manga is the rather fat little book that you get for your 8.95 [most of the time around 250 pages to the 120 or so that the American versions go].

Elfquest Manga-sized

What I saw was a manga sized edition of Wendy and Richard Pini's Elfquest. Not only was it manga sized, it was formatted in the same black and white style on the same style paper and with the same dimensions [it even goes 224 pages like a manga book].

Death: At Death's Door

I don't think that this means that DC has changed it's entire marketing strategy, but it seems like they may be trying something different. This book, coupled with Jill Thompson's Death: At Death's Door, a manga sized and style telling of part of Neil Gaiman's Sandman book from his sister Death's point of view, are definitely a good sign. Now if they just keep this up and don't decide to get all pussified like Marvel is getting.

New Game For Your Bemusement

By way of In4mador, I bring you Whizzball. It's alot like the game 'the Incredible Machine.' The object is to solve the puzzles using all of the pieces provided.

Currently my score of 177000 points gives me a ranking of 12074 amongst all the players. I WILL REIGN SUPREME! [or perhaps not as the game has absorbed about two hours of my time already]. You can also design your own puzzles.
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