Friday, September 9, 2011

Thundercats Thunder-recaps Episode 8: The Duelist and the Drifter!

Today my epic, dickish, man-cat adventure continues and I venture further into the world of the 2011 Thundercats reboot. So far the cats' aimless forest wanderings have been relatively cool, even though I am constantly stressed by the fact that supposed "main characters" Cheetara and Tigra still have absolutely nothing to do! Maybe they'll grow so bored in this episode that they'll start sloppily making out in the background. We live in hope!

Last week's episode saw meathead Lion-O being sucked into a musty old book where he took on the persona of his ancestor Ye Olde Mr. Muttonchops, so I'm really hoping that this episode actually moves forward and advances the present day story. Let's check out our preview pic:


Who the hell is that jackanape!? I bet he gets ten times the screen time of Tigra. I guess we'll all find out... after the jump! (SPOILERS!)

Our Week of Reading! Vol. 4!

Looks like this week the Fruitless Pursuits staff are deceptively literate! Today have an unprecedented five submissions. Yes. We can read. Take back all those terrible things you said.


Join us after the jump to find out what we've been reading and what we thought about it:

DC Reboot Review: Hawk and Dove. Can't All be Winners!

My noob coverage of September's DC line-wide reboot continues. Can these new #1's inspire and hook a casual fan? So far I've read and reviewed Justice League #1 (which left me a little cold), Action Comics #1 (which was pretty great), Detective Comics #1 (well done, but who is it for?), and Batgirl #1 (I'm just not sure).

This time we're getting a little more obscure and investigating two characters that, for most of us, require some sort of introduction. Who on earth are Hawk and Dove? What's their deal? How do they fit in? Why should we invest in them? And why is Hawk always grimacing in like he desperately needs to shit?

All our questions will (kind of) be answered in Hawk and Dove #1, written by Sterling Gates and drawn by the notorious and irrepressible Mr. Rob Leifeld:


Is it any good? I'll state the obvious after the jump!

Star Wars Round Up: Moleskine, Trooper's Day Off.

Did you know that you can submit items of interest to us by emailing contact@fruitlesspursuits.com ? It saves us some hunting around and it gives you the smug satisfaction of a job well done! We received two cool things today, both Star Wars related, so I'm going to roll them into this one post. For we are nothing if not ruthless efficient, here at FP Headquarters. (Secret: We live in a volcano).

You're familiar with Moleskine, right? Purveyors of legendary notebooks and diaries? Melon-headed Edgar Allen Poe used to write about all his secret crushes in one. Ernest Hemingway would tear a couple of sheets out of his in order to wipe his greasy mouth after kissing a sealion.

Not too long ago, Moleskine released some very attractive Pacman themed notebooks - and I was sorely tempted by their Siren song. But their newest reveal is what has finally brought me to the edge. Yes! They have the Star Wars license! And only a few thousand companies can attest to that.

These are limited edition and are expected in September:


Image via Oli Phillips, with thanks to KJ for the heads up!

Join me after the jump to see what's next!

Friday Night Movie Review 4!

Friday Night Movie Review seems to come back around so quickly that it's no surprise we get caught with our collective pants (yes, we share one large pair of pants) (they're clown pants) down. We're a little light for content this week, and one of them is a new take on a movie we've done before, and one of them isn't even a movie. And yet we've got the audacity to serve you up this content anyway! We'll do what we please, because rules are for cops!


Join us after the jump to read about what we've been watching:

Project Runway Recaps: S09 E07




Did you watch Project Runway? NO?!? Then you missed a doozy! It's OK, though, because I drew pictures. Come and look at them!

Thank Gif It's Friday

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Get your hands on some McFly kicks

As we swiftly approach the year 2015, the setting for the bitchin' Back to the Future II, it's starting to become painfully obvious that science is simply not delivering on the promises we were made by Robert Zemeckis. I see no hoverboards. I see no one-size-fits-all jackets. I see no 3D movie promotions where I feel in danger of being eaten by a shark. I WANT TO FEEL LIKE I'M GOING TO BE EATEN BY A SHARK, SCIENCE!

Luckily, the good people at Nike have come to our rescue.


In defense of Bioware - when did boobs start equalling sexism?

This may well get my feminism stripes taken off me, but I've been doing a lot of internetting in recent times (no more so than usual, mind you) and since I've been revisiting Dragonage Origins I've found myself frequently on Bioware forums, the Dragonage wiki, things like that. Anyone who's done something similar will agree that it's a sometimes infuriating read. Everyone's a critic, everyone hates everything, so on and so forth. But the one thing that REALLY seems to get everyones hackles up is a particular character from Dragonage 2 - namely Isabela.


More after the cut:

It's Getting a Little Easier to be Green!

Adidas' upcoming Kermit the Frog adidas Superstar II!



I wonder how much of a pain in the ass these will be to track down in Australia...

Via  Kixandthecity (who got it from City Sole)

Choose Your Own Adventure Video - Deliver Me From Hell

Choose your own adventure books were the coolest things ever growing up, and they still are actually. I recently came upon this video when looking for similar things for work (for realz) and found this to be fantastic. In a nutshell, you're the pizza delivery guy who has to make a delivery in the middle of the Zombie Apocalypse.

 

 Don't know if it'll let you make decisions while staying on the same page, but I'm curious if you can survive. Share your experiences below

DC Reboot Review: Detective Comics #1 & Batgirl #1. Winning Back an Audience With Torture Porn!

I've read and reviewed the new Superman, now let's flip the coin and figure out what's going on in the Bat-universe as September's DC reboot continues.

I like Batman. I like the films, I've read graphic novels, I watched the animated series, I've played the video games. I like the concept, I like the villains, I like the world. But I've never been able to get into the ongoing series. So here's DC's chance to draw me in. Hook me, DC! This one should be easy! Even our grandmothers love Batman! And they collect porcelain Batmans! And hell - I guess while we're at it I may as well throw in a review of Batgirl #1 as well. Or Batman With Boobs as I like to call it.

Batman's first solo outing this months is Detective Comics #1 (because he's a detective remember! The other obvious choice would have been Billionaire Fancy Dress Maniac #1). It's written AND drawn by multi-tasking night-owl playboy millionaire Tony Salvador Daniel:


Join me after the jump to see what I thought.

Boards and Beers - City Square Off

City Square off is a two-player game from Gamewright Games that puts players in a head to head competition of of city planning. You will immediately note that this is not a very good simulation of city planning, as it plays out in about 15-20 minutes, and involves no mechanics for planning committees, public hearings, budgeting sessions, or zoning. As much as I love planning committees, I think is safe to say that is probably for the best.


Review after the jump.

DC Reboot Review: Action Comics #1. Huzzah! Superman is a Dick Again!

Superman wasn't always a blue-eyed boy scout, or USA-approved punch-monkey. Back in the heady Golden Age he was an alien invader who fought hard and rough for the little guy! He was a tough-talking sardonic, man's man who gleefully terrorized corrupt officials and smacked around wife-beaters. The original Superman had a message and that message was strong. It was: "I am Superman. I am a powerful alien maniac. And I can kick your puny ass. Probably into the sun."

For more classic Superman craziness check out Ive's What's Out article here.
Sadly, somehow, over time, Superman began to soften. He gained the American way, a social conscience, manners, grooming, and a hell of a lot of baggage. (A wife?! Come on now!). I'm not too interested in the modern Superman. We prefer Batman, right? Because we love a crazy, screaming aggressor. If mainstream comics are power fantasies then why not be a super-powered dick!

With DC's line-wide relaunch and reboot of all its titles this September, the long running 900+ issues of Superman's debut title Action Comics has come to a close. Today we got a new Action Comics #1, written by Grant Morrison, with art by Rags Morale:


Is this a last-ditch chance for Superman to be a dick again? Join me after the jump to find out what it's all about!

New Toys!: Island of WTF SRSLY Misfit Toys!

Have you ever received an email that makes you pause? Like a crazy spam email with a subject line that is so unbelievably insane that you have the immediate urge to share it with your friends? Like, "How Deep Does Her Dark Grotto Go?" (100% real), or "Have You Seen My Missing Dog?" and they're writing from Zimbabwe? ("Not unless your dog is a seriously good swimmer, my friend!").

Today I got a strange email from a company I actually subscribe to. The current newsletter from online collectibles store Entertainment Earth contained a couple of items that had me rubbing my eyes in disbelief, pinching myself, and throwing a bottle of whiskey over my shoulder. I mean, seriously, what kind of misfit collectibles were these and just who exactly were they intended for?

Three items stood out in particular. The first is this guy:

I'll say more about him in a moment, but this is the one that I actually kind of like. The remaining two are head-scratchingly crazy-wretched. And one of them is quite astoundingly  Not-Safe-For-Work, not that it stopped the fine folks at Entertainment Earth from sending it to me. At work. Where I inadvertently opened it.

Join me after the jump. You're going to regret it!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

8-Bit Banter - Blades of Steel

WITH THE PASS!!!

Before the licensed sports games like NHL and Madden, there were games like Tecmo Bowl, Virtual Tennis, and Blades of Steel. Since major league sports hadn't quite caught onto the videogame craze just yet, simple games like these were very well received. Tonight I'll chat about Blades of Steel!



You've never played Blades of Steel? No it's not a Shogun Battle game, it's just the best titled hockey game ever! Released in 1988 for the NES, this game was an instant family favorite. I mean, come on, who doesn't love hockey?

Catching up with Minimates

It's been a long time since I've bought any Minimates. In fact, it's been a pretty long time since I've bought any non-vinyl action figures. I'm guessing it's been about 2-3 years. But before that it, I was pretty much knee deep in block figures.

I prefer Kubricks (which I can't find) and Palz (which I miss terribly), but Minimates are kicking some serious square ass right now. The shelves at Toys R' Us were seriously stocked yesterday, and I saw a bunch of new(er) Minimates for the first time.



If you've been out of the loop like I have been... READ ON!

Star Wars Lego Padawan Menace on Blu-ray, plus Picnic on Dagobah!

You know when I do too many Star Wars posts the other contributors threaten to hurt me? I am risking life and limb to share all this news with you and I really love my life, and second to that, I really like my limbs. So I'm going to roll two of today's big stories into one post and I hope that I get away with it. But if I suddenly start typing like this: jsfasfasf jasfas9fjafg dgg, then you'll know I've had my shit busted.
Hey! Don't you roll your eyes and dismiss this based on that image alone! Join me after the jump because I am going to school you on why this is one of the greatest and most unexpected things to happen to Star Wars in a long time!

Spoiler Alert! New They Might Be Giants Video.

Back in July indie definitely giants, They Might Be Giants, released their new (and 15th) full-length album Join Us. I've been a big fan for 20 years now and I bought it, enjoyed it, and do not have the adequate vocabulary to describe it. It's what you'd expect but incredibly unexpected. It's wildly experimental and wildly inconsistent. It's an eccentric genius.

Today those plucky bastards at boing boing got to debut the new video for the song Spoiler Alert. It's not my favourite song on the new album (that would have to go to the weirdly wonderful Cloisonne, followed by Protagonist, and then You Probably Get That A Lot). (The album also contains Celebration which in my mind might be the worst song they've ever written, at least conceptually) (Update! - listening again, I take that back. The verse is pretty sweet. I just feel weird about the chorus).

I've read mixed reviews for the new video. Most of which are about manicures. But fuck you haters, manicures aren't rock and roll! You need gnarly nails to play the guitar! Or um... piano accordian. (I don't play an instrument). I'll let you judge for yourself:


But the other video from Join Us, is for Can't Keep Johnny Down. It was made by a fan who won a competion. I like that video much more and you can watch it with me after the jump! (And let's watch some old favourites while we're at it!)

The Art of Alain Gree


I've just discovered the work of French children's book illustrator Alain GreƩ! You can read more (and see pretty pictures!) at my blog.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What's Out? Week of 7th of September 2011


Here it is again! That time of the week where I look at what's coming out and learn about new things to cringe about.

Pixel Freddie Mercury Riding A Flying Tiger!

I know this sounds like a concept for THE BEST VIDEO GAME EVER, but it's actually today's Google Doodle in honor of Freddie Mercury's 65th birthday. You would never know from the main page of Google. Their rotating header appears to be a nice looking compilation of artwork featuring the late singer of Queen and a big play button. Even after hitting the play button it seems like an ad for Google featuring Queen.. but at about the 35 second mark, the magic starts to happen.



I know tomorrow is WedNESday, but this will be gone soon enough. Before it's too late, head on over to Google. Or you can click through the jump for a YouTube video of the Doodle in action. The image above is just the beginning of the awesomeness.

Doctor Who / The Lonely Island mashup video!?!?

Here's an amazing mash-up of The Lonely Island's song "Jizz In My Pants" and clips from Doctor Who episodes. I've never seen Doctor Who, so I'll need the purists to let me know how amazing (or terrible) this video is... but I'm a big fan of The Lonely Island (especially their collaborations with Justin Timberlake).

And now I can say that I'm also a big fan of whoever edited this together. Nice work eelhsashlee from YouTube!

(lyrics may be considered NSFW)


Thanks to @geektrooper for tweeting and posting the video on his wonderfully geeky igeektrooper.com.

Doctor Who S06 E09 Night Terrors


As you can probably tell from the title of the episode, 'Night Terrors' was never going to be full of cupcakes and unicorns. Are we able to sleep with the lights off after watching it? Read on to find out.

Limited Mixed-Media Chun-Li Statue is $165 per Gigantic Thigh.

I spent the majority of 1992 - 1993 being mesmerized by Chun-Li's gigantic thighs. She is by far my favourite Street Fighter II character to play, even though I wield her ineptly, no doubt due to her high-spirited hypnotizing effect. Thankfully, some 18 years later, you can enjoy her every day by planting a limited edition mixed media 17.5 inch statue of her right in the middle of your work desk and refusing to talk to anyone.

Pop Culture Shock has opened up the pre-order of the black costumed version, limited to a mere 75 pieces. And it's going to cost you $330 which, by my calculations, is $165 per massive thigh. Note that it's also a mixed-media piece so her clothes are fabric. If you've ever executed a spinning-bird kick then you'll know what you'll find.


I'm not quite $300 worth of fan, but I still think it's quite stunning. More so than the completely legless Kid Robot version that J wrote about here

Join me after the jump and I'll show you two other premium statues that have recently caught my eye, as well as a truly ridiculous clip of martial arts fine artist Jackie Chan fighting - while dressed as Chun-Li!

Under the Man-croscope: M.A.S.K.'s Gator!

You know when you're a kid and you're exposed to something (not like that) and you just totally, blindly accept it? And then much later, as a swarthy adult, you look back at the exact same thing and you're all, "WHAAA??! WTF?!" Because your innocent, unquestioning child eyes did not realise how wildly infeasible these things you took for granted actually were. This happens to me all the time when I re-encounter old movies, TV shows, books and toys. It's like being lied to you. And you want to travel back in time and punch yourself in the face for being the stupid little idiot you clearly were.

I am hereby going to dub this process of seeing a child's thing through adult's eyes as "putting in under the Man-croscope." Do not worry, ladies, there is also an equally effective woman-croscope, but because it is harder to say it is shortened to 'Man-croscope, thus making the two scopes virtually indistinguishable.

In the inaugural posting I will be turning the Man-croscope on an item from mid-eighties toy line and animated series M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) (Uh, that acronym doesn't really pass the man-croscope test either, but that's not what we're here for). M.A.S.K. - a simpler successor to Transformers - consisted of a bunch of pretty awesome vehicles that transformed into battle mode, generally revealing a ton of hidden weapons. They were manned by heroic dudes who wore special-powered "masks" and they fought V.E.N.O.M (Vicious Evil Network of Mayhem!) (Imagine the boardroom meeting when the bigwigs at Venom decided to label themselves as that!).

Overall, it was a great toyline and the last one I really collected as a child. A corvette that flew and shot razor discs? Hell yes! I can totally get behind that! But there was one item that wasn't so great, and it will be the victim of the Man-croscope today:

Image gratefully and respectfully lifted from Albert Penello's brilliant M.A.S.K. archive. Check it out!
To rub your weary adult eyes in disbelief and that misguided creation that is Gator, join me after the jump!

Review: Z-Girl and the 4 Tigers!

In a first for our fledgling site, we were lucky enough to be given the opportunity to review book one of new comic series Z-Girl and the 4 Tigers! This is an independent book produced by Z Studios, written by scribe and frequent Newsarama contributor Jeff Marsick, with art by the indubitably manly Kirk Manley.


What's it all about and how did I feel about it? Find out after the jump!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Tuesday Bounty! Glorious Bounty Book 3, Page 4!

Glorious Bounty Book 3: The Convoluted Killbots continues to power along regardless of whether you read it or not! Doesn't that make you feel frustrated and impotent! Nobody can stop our inept-scifi-bountyhunter-satirical-comic momentum! It's drawn by fellow contributor Grug, and written and coloured by me and it is TOTALLY IN YOUR FACE. Yes. I have just solved the mystery of what it in your face.

When we last the Bounty crew they barging in on the cockroach-like killbot aficionado Kruckus, supposedly an old friend of rapscallion team-leader Deevis, and said to be the only guy who can determine the true owner of Furious Bruce's stitched on face. But are things between Deevis and Kruckus as rosy as he'd have you believe? READ ON, DEAR READER! Or just skip past this. (Click to embiggen!):

As always, find out everything you need to know about Glorious Bounty at the official site!

Batman: The Long Halloween

While I was attending Fan Expo last week I snagged this lovely collector's set inspired by the Batman: Long Halloween graphic novel for only $35.00! I was terribly excited.


This set comes with a Batman figure, a Joker figure, and accessory for each, and the trade paperback of The Long Halloween. How does it come out? Discover my impressions and more pics after the jump!!

Saturday Night Board Games: Formula De, Famous Missions, The New Yorker: Cartoon Caption Game and The Impossible Machine

Saturday night was our big board game night once again. We started the night saying that we were going to play games we haven't played in a long time, but once we realized that we had 5 players, the plan evolved. In the end, it was another weird night of board games. Aren't they all kind of weird though?



Metal Mondays: Metalocalypse! (NSFW)

I know this is probably a LITTLE bit preaching to the converted, but for those who aren't - golly.


More NSFW after the break:

Orchestral Version of the Nineties X-Men Cartoon Theme

You remember the X-Men cartoon from the nineties, right!? When the team moved stiffly, and wore garishly coloured Halloween costumes, and Cable spit a grenade pin at some dude's head? It had Jubilee in it and she wore a yellow raincoat and had fireworks that came out of her fingertips even though she was wearing gloves! It looked a lot like this:


If your obliviously innocent memories are as fond as mine are, then please promise me you'll never watch it again. Ever. Because then you'll realise that it's pretty much a colossal piece of crap, and we can't afford to have you doubting and/or hating yourself. One element, however, that does stand up to the test of time is the brilliantly badass theme, and God Bless the Internet because TheKraken has thoughtfully recorded an orchestral version of it.

For once the X-Men cartoon is everything that you hoped it would be:

X-MEN Theme by TheKraken

Superheroes, Sports and Subway

The new Justice League came out last week and it's being talked about in many places including right here on Fruitless Pursuits (here and here). My thoughts were that it wasn't the best Justice League story I've read. It wasn't even my favourite one from this year. The honour of that title goes to the following great story that appeared as a free insert in most DC comics earlier this year:


Let me present to you Justice League/Subway Famous Fans! 

Mesmerizing Video of Darth Vader Carved Carrot.

It might seem like there's nothing happening on the 'net today, but only until you check into the blog of our favourite Japanese sushi chef and creative genius Oki - the guy who nobly carved Grand Moff Tarkin out of vegetables for the glory of his country! Oki's been busy making all sorts of awesome stuff at My Sushi World, not the least of which is his menacing carrot Darth Vader.

It's one thing to look at pictures, but Oki has gone a step better and made this incredibly inspiring video. In fact, I 100& guarantee that it will inspire young children to eat so many carrots that they can not only see in the dark, but also see through walls. At the very least you could use it to force choke a rabbit.


Oki, we love and salute you! Do make sure you go to his site to see other great carrot creations including a Santa ewok and Doremon Gadget Cat from the Future! It's about time somebody carved the crap out of those damn carrots!

Metal Mondays: Metal Baby.

I never got into metal. In fact I didn't really develop a taste in music until the end of 1991 when, at age 15, new friends introduced me to a whole world of alternative bands that I'd never been exposed to. (Prior to that, most of the albums I owned were soundtracks to movies I liked, much in the same way that nearly every novel I owned was a novelization of a movie I liked. I liked movies).

So on this fine Metal Monday, I am reminded of my favourite song on one of the first albums I bought during this musical awakening. And it's not a metal song by any means, but it has the word "metal" in the title so I thought it was pretty apt. And the reason I remember it so well is because I was visiting my grandparents in Canberra over the 1991 Christmas holidays and my grandfather took me to the legendary Impact Records (which is still going strong) and I proudly bought Teenage Fanclub's Bandwagonesque. On CASSETTE!

AND NOT ONLY THAT, when I got home and eagerly placed into my grandfather's stereo I was absolutely horrified to realise that the entire tape had been spooled on backwards and the stereo was shrieking (perhaps metalesque) devil music in tongues! And I was pretty pissed because a $20 investment was not insignificant to a 15-year-old in 1991.

So we went back to the store and my grandfather got all hardass and protective with the staff who were kind of incredulous and dubious that such a thing could even happen, and they opened up a new cassette and put it on a listening station for us to double-check. And my granddad listens and the first thing he hears are the Metal Baby lyrics, "Says she won't be forced/against her will/says she don't do drugs/but she does the pill/oh yeah!" and I remember vividly that he kind of frowns and says, "Well I guess it sounds slightly better than it did before".

Here's Metal Baby!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Weekly Re-Crap - Week Ending September 4th

Hey! How was your week? How was ours? The image below and the following post will tell you more about us than you'll ever want to know.