Cinema Shame Statement – 2018

Cinema Shame Statement – 2018

With the desire to not only watch more movies but also to blog more in 2018, I’ve decided to take a part in Cinema Shames 2018 activities. Each month they will provide a prompt, and you just need to watch a movie that fits the parameters and then blog about it. More info can be found here.

The January prompt is to create a 2018 Shame statement.

I’m keeping my statement simple and in house. Basically, I am choosing 12 movies I already own that I feel like I should’ve seen by now. I will also participate in the monthly prompts, as time permits.

I’m going to list my 2018 shame statement films in alphabetical order, as I created the list by browsing my collection and writing titles down as I came to them.

Without further adieu…

Continue reading “Cinema Shame Statement – 2018”


Where I’ve been, where I’m going, and all that’s in between

Where I’ve been, where I’m going, and all that’s in between

Summer has come and is almost gone, which means fall is upon us.  I stay busy during the summer, especially with my students being out of school: summer camp and just having extra time during the week to hang out and do stuff together, plus then factoring time in with Elizabeth and friends. Finding time to write just isn’t a priority, plus I follow so many people on Twitter who have great blogs, I just feel inadequate at times.

But I’ve had a really good week this week, and at some point this week the fire to write reignited in me. This is my blog, and make it whatever I want it to be. If it gets read, awesome. If not, I wrote stuff. And that is what is more important. Maybe I’ll write a few times a week; maybe just a few times a month. But writing has always been important to me, and this is my outlet.

I’ve got a fresh pot of coffee made, Hans Zimmer’s score to Inception playing in the background, a fully charged laptop, and a few ideas to get out in this post. Welcome new readers, and thanks for returning if you’ve been here before!

Without further adieu:

Continue reading “Where I’ve been, where I’m going, and all that’s in between”

Upcoming 2017 Movies I’m looking forward to

Upcoming 2017 Movies I’m looking forward to

As 2016 comes to a close, it’s always nice to have something to look forward to.  One of my resolutions for the new year is to blog more, at least one post a month (I mean, I have to start somewhere.) So, why not end this year with a post about the movies of 2017 I am looking forward to!

Couple of disclaimers:

  • I’m not ranking these, and actually will be posting the “Top 10” in order of U.S. release.
  • Out of my “Top 10”, 8 of the movies are from franchises. I am totally down for new and original concepts and characters, don’t get me wrong. But it’s easier to anticipate seeing a continuation of a story or characters you already know.

Without further adieu:

Continue reading “Upcoming 2017 Movies I’m looking forward to”

My Top 5+1 Favorite TV Aliens

My Top 5+1 Favorite TV Aliens

So earlier this week I did a list of my favorite aliens from movies (post can be found here), so it’s only right I do a list of my favorite aliens from TV as well.

Once again, I am omitting any species from Star Wars/Star Trek/Kaiju/Comics, as then the list will just be too long. (With one exception) (also, Kaiju and comics may get their own list eventually.)

Exception: Transformers


Being a child of the ’80s, Transformers was a main staple of my childhood. Saturday morning cartoons, toys, etc. I’m calling this one the exception as 1) I am not limiting my love of Autobots and Decepticons down to one or two characters. That is just too hard for me. 2) I love the characters across all formats of presentation: cartoon/comics/movies (Yes, they aren’t fine cinema. But they also aren’t the worst movies I’ve seen either.) It’s hard not to love Transformers when the wife and I use the quote “You’ve failed me again, Starscream” on a regular basis.

5+1: Kang & Kodos


You really don’t choose one over the other when it comes to Kang and Kodos. They are very much a package deal. I haven’t watched new episodes of The Simpsons in years, but growing up these two were staples of the Halloween specials, and normally my favorite part.

4: The Martians from Sesame Street


Not sure if they have real names in the Sesame Street/Muppet universe, but when I was a kid I called them Yip-Yips. I was always excited to see them appear on Sesame Street, and was more than likely where I began my love for the extraordinary/out-of-this world stuff.

3: Krang


Another character I love from my childhood. Technically he also falls into the comics/movie representation (haven’t seen Out of the Shadows yet, so not sure how I feel about his character there, but I also love his representation in the comics), but my introduction to the character was the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon.  Who didn’t think the Technodrome was super awesome? Also, as menacing as he could be on his own, I always loved it when he used the android body to move around.

2: ALF


Another staple of my childhood.  I had an ALF doll that I took a lot of places (and is probably still hanging out in a box someplace; more than likely with My Buddy and My Pet Monster). I’m not sure if we watched ALF regularly, as we lived overseas for most of the time it was on the air, but I do recall having a handful of episodes on a VHS tape that I watched quite a lot. I still watch an episode now and then, thanks to Hulu.

1: Marvin the Martian


Marvin is the first character I remember being obsessed with (even before Batman). I’m not sure when my love for him began, but I had posters, vhs tapes, clothes, etc growing up, and still have clothes with him on it today. Didn’t really matter what short I was watching with him in it when I was younger but I do prefer the ones with Bugs over Daffy (Duck Dodgers) as an adult.

My Top 5 Favorite Film Aliens

My Top 5 Favorite Film Aliens

So, with the desire to write and use this new blog more, I’ve decided that I’m going to start doing the occasional list.  Hopefully, over time, this will become a weekly feature, but for now it’ll be when I find time (and a topic).

First up: Top 5 (and Honorable mention) favorite Aliens (film)

Fair warning: this list excludes all Star Wars, Star Trek, comics and Kaiju, as then the post would never end.  I had to limit myself somehow.

Honorable Mention: Aliens from Signs


I remember liking Signs when I saw it.  I remember seeing it in theaters, and I own it on DVD (probably because it came out while I worked at Blockbuster, and I bought a lot of movies while working there), but it’s not a film I rewatch a lot.  But Signs does have something going for it, and that is one of the few films that not only freaked me out while watching it, but has stuck with me after all these years.  The scene in question is where the screen shot is from: Merrill Hess (Joaquin Phoenix) is watching a clip on TV of an alien caught on tape  at a birthday party in Mexico. The alien stepping out of the bush and crossing the screen is very similar to the infamous Patterson Bigfoot footage.  It not only startled me out of my seat, it became ingrained in my brain almost.  On the way into the town in which I live in, there is a length of road that has swamp on either side of it, and during the summer has growth very similar to what the alien steps out of. And for a period of time after seeing Signs, I was unable to drive into town going that route because I would freak out.

5. Aliens from Mars Attacks!


Mars Attacks! is one of the first firms I remember seeing a trailer for and having a sense of excitement for. Not that I hadn’t been excited for movies before then, but in ’96 I was 14 and really beginning my love of cinema. I remember getting anything related to the movie, including issues of magazines and the novelization. It’s also one of the first movies I remember seeing on my own. Is it a great movie? It all depends on who you ask. I myself love it; it has a great ensemble cast, and is just fun to watch.

4. Predator


Predator is quintessential viewing of ’80s action/horror. I rewatched it recently, and it holds up so well.  What starts off as an almost generic action film with a team of commandos going into the jungle for a rescue mission quickly turns into a slasher film, as the Predator alien starts picking off the commandos one by one.  It’s also a movie that the wife and I quote a lot. (It’s been more than a decade since I’ve seen Predator 2, and I haven’t seen Predators or either of the AvP films since theatrical run.)

3. Alien


I’m going to be completely honest: I really wasn’t into science fiction growing up (I’ve learned I missed out on a lot of great cinema, and have started rectifying this mistake.)  Minus the two AvP films, I hadn’t seen a film in the Alien franchise until I blind bought the Quadrilogy on Blu-ray back in 2014.  That set turned me into a fan of the franchise, and is one of my all-time favorite sets. The behind the scenes documentaries are just as good as the movies themselves (and for some people, probably even better when you’re talking about Alien3 and Resurrection). As with Predator, Alien is straight up a slasher film, just with an alien as the killer and not a masked villain. Ripley is one of the greatest action heroes of cinema. Aliens takes the action film formula, throws it into space, and magnifies it to 11.

2. Pizza Planet Aliens (AKA Little Green Men)


Aliens and dinosaurs are two things kid/teen/adult Jason consider part of his favorite things. When these little green guys showed up in a movie that was blowing away the mind of 13 year old Jason, he had favorite characters. The Toy Story franchise is my favorite of the Pixar library, and even though they’re more cameo characters than anything, these little guys are still the best.  Be it being mesmerized by “The Claw” or saving the day, it’s hard not to love them. (I remember reacting in horror just as Woody and Buzz did when Sid throws one to Skud in Toy Story.)

1. Stitch (AKA Experiment 626)


Lilo & Stitch is one of my favorite Disney films, as it is my wife’s (it taking place in Hawaii is a big part of her love for it).  An alien created for chaos who finds his Ohana after crashing on Earth. Also, the marketing campaign for the first film was brilliant, with Stitch landing in classic Disney movie scenes, and the tag line “There’s one in every family.”  The scene where Stitch tells Nani that “Ohana means family, and family means no one gets left behind or forgotten.” makes me misty-eyed just thinking about it.





My first memories of comic book reading are of the Archie digests.  My cousin had given me a few one summer while she was cleaning, and then I started picking them up from the grocery store and Wal-Mart.

The next memory I have is my parents buying me the trade of “The Death of Superman”.  I was 1o, and I tried collecting the aftermath of that (I have Funeral for a Friend and the introductory issues for each of the replacement Superman) but somewhere, I either wasn’t interested enough or it was a bit overwhelming for me at that age.

Flash forward 4 years (end of ’96).  I guess since they had bought me Death in trade, my parents thought I would be interested in Superman: The Wedding Album.  We had just moved again (Dad was in the military) and I remember coming home from school and Mom having that comic for me.  I was interested enough in finding out what happened next (Not realizing Clark had recently lost his powers in the Final Night event), so Mom found a local comic book shop and I started getting Superman comics weekly.  Post-wedding is when the Electric Superman story took place (which I loved).  Besides the Superman books, I also began picking up Grant Morrison’s JLA.  (Reflecting back now, I totally get how I fell in love with comics. Which is exactly what this post is about.)

Another move takes place, and I’m still into comics.  I haven’t started collecting much beyond Superman and JLA titles, but pick up a trade that looks promising to me.

Everyone has one of those “life altering” moments when it comes to hobbies.  Maybe it’s the first time you watched a certain film, or read a particular book by an author.  This was that moment for me in comics.

Batman: The Long Halloween changed the comic game for me.  I was hooked on Batman from that point on (which thinking back on it, I grew up with the Burton films and Batman: The Animated Series. I’m not sure why I hadn’t picked up a Batman comic before hand).  Also, when Elizabeth and I were dating, I wanted to pique her interest in comics (hobbies are always more fun when you share them with someone) and The Long Halloween was what I gave her to read.

I got into Batman comics just as Bruce Wayne: Fugitive was starting.  I went back and collected trades of No Man’s Land. As much as I loved Loeb due to his work with Sale, I feel in love with Greg Rucka.  Years later he would collaborate on one of my all-time favorite comic book series with Ed Brubaker, Gotham Central.

Once I jumped on the Batman wagon, I also ventured into the other characters of DC.  When Kevin Smith brought back Green Arrow, I was there.  Geoff Johns and Green Lantern: Rebirth.  Identity Crisis. Morrison’s Batman: R.I.P. and Final Crisis.  Even Flashpoint.

When DCnU 52 happened, I stuck with Batman and Green Lantern, but dropped a few of the characters I had fallen in love with.  DC breaking up Clark and Lois as well as Ollie and Dinah, nope… not interested.  I tried new books and creators, but something was missing for me.

2014, I went to my first comic-con.  Emerald City Comic-Con, to be exact.  It was a birthday gift Elizabeth and I gave to our friend Dave for his 30th.  It gave me a revitalization in my comic book love.  Being able to meet creators, writers, artists, etc. of books and characters that I loved.  Being able to meet people and be introduced into new comics I hadn’t been reading.

Up until 2014 (12 years) I had been strictly a  DC fan.  I had read an occasional Marvel comic here or there, mostly due to Dave’s recommendation.  I had some non-DC stuff in trade as well, from my time at Borders.  And I was collecting a few things from IDW (Godzilla, TMNT and Ghostbusters. Childhood nostalgia 100%).  But by and large, I am a DC over Marvel guy.

As much as I love Batman and the DC titles I do collect, I fell behind in my reading of books. I currently have two long boxes filled primarily with unread issues.  Which Elizabeth and I plan on getting around to reading, but the priorities in life made comics take a backseat.  I still stay caught up on a few titles, mainly the non-DC books.  Nailbiter and Puppet Master are two of my favorite books right now, and the Ghostbusters comic has never disappointed me.

Which brings me to the point of this entry.  Last month, DC released Rebirth, launching a new chapter in the life of DC comics.  Now, I’ve known this was coming for a few months, when it was announced.  Because of the back-up on comics and responsibilities of life, I don’t make it to my comic shop weekly as much as I’d like.  Yesterday was the first time I had made it since Rebirth came out.  Of course, Richard had put aside any of the titles that he thought I would be interested in. To the shock of another guy in the store, I decided to not pick up any of them.

I am using Rebirth as a jumping off point (for now) when it comes to DC. Now, I may pick up a title here or there (Greg Rucka’s Wonder Woman may be hard to pass on), but the adult and smart move for me to make was to become a trade collecting guy.  Money-wise, time-wise, and room-wise, it just makes sense.

Now, I am not giving up on comics at all.  Will be sticking with the stuff from Image, IDW, and a few other odds and ends I collect. Darkwing Duck just started a new comic, which is hard to pass on. And like I said, when trades start coming out of the Rebirth titles, I’ll order them from Richard.  He won’t lose my business to online sites.

Until then, I have plenty to read. I haven’t read a Green Lantern book since the Godhead event took place, which was December of ’14. Robin War. Snyder and Capullo’s last story on Batman. Justice League: Darkseid War. All things waiting for me to catch up on.