Saturday, October 1, 2011

Rocktober: My Seven Favourite Fictional Bands and Their Songs!

WOOO! ROCKTOBER! THANK YOU INTERNET, YOU'VE BEEN A GREAT AUDIENCE! Yes, it is time for me to rock out and add something constructive to the Rocktober mix! And seeing as how I don't really live in the real world, why not celebrate my tenuous grasp of reality by listening to my Top Seven Fictionial Bands and Their Songs! There's an exhaustive list to choose from, and not everything is readily available on youtube, but here's what I've haphazardly slapped together for your aural pleasure. (Guffaw!)... Presented in no particular order...

1. Zit Remedy (Degrassi Junior High), performing Everybody Wants Something.
If you're as old and despondent as I am, you might remember this home-grown outfit from Canada - the Degrassi sensation, the one and only Zit Remedy, who later became The Zits. Because it turns out there is no remedy. This three-piece consisted of sleazy, hat-wearing, opportunist Joey Jeremiah; the slender man-whore Snake; and the confusingly not-in-a-wheelchair Wheels. Note how at the end of the clip it is revealed that the whole thing is not about the music, but about Joey trying to impress the pants off uber-hottie Caitlin. Respect. How rock 'n' roll is that!

I have six more of these gems waiting for you after the jump!

Rocktober: The Joy Formidable Have Officially Blown My Mind

I wanted to start off Rocktober with a bang, and this is exactly the band to do it. The Joy Formidable is a three piece band from North Wales that have a huge, melodic sound that feels like it's coming from a band twice their size. They also can get quite noisy, in such a good way.

When I first heard them it was the kind of discovery that only happens a few times in your entire lifetime. It mostly reminds me of the feeling when I first heard Sunny Day Real Estate (17 years ago. WTF!?!). But unfortunately, and unlike Sunny Day Real Estate, this discovery makes me terribly depressed because it was just too late to catch them at a small club. Things are blowing up for them, quickly. Next month they're doing shows with the Foo Fighters, and this week they were announced as the lead-off track on the Twilight: Breaking Dawn soundtrack. A few months ago, most of us had no clue what we were missing.

If you haven't heard The Joy Formidable, here is the video that started it all for me. If you have heard of them, I'm sure you'll be re-watching the video again anyway.

Prepare yourself for the best 8 minutes of your day.

For more info:

Rocktober Gallery Day #1

I have somewhat of a decent archive of live music photos, resulting from a few years behind the camera working for various magazines and papers, and I thought 'Hey, Rocktober sounds like the perfect kind of month to drag a few photos out and shove them back on the internets!' Some of these will have been published on either my Flickr or photo website previously, but many will have never been let loose on the internet before. Oooo! So, without further ado, let's begin. One photo a day, for 31 days. Let's go!

The Living End. Metro City. 2008.

Welcome to ROCKTOBER!

Motley Crue. Total badasses. Real men wear makeup.
Previously the domain of cheesy commercial radio stations, and at home amongst the movie ticket giveaways and icy cold cans of Coke, ROCKTOBER is back as a saviour to the masses!

So what the hell IS Rocktober?'s October but turned up to 11. We at Fruitless Pursuits love music almost as much as we love ewoks and Batman, so why not dedicate the month with the conveniently adaptable name to our favourite aural treats?

Rocktober will be a celebration of all types of music, and we'll be bringing you mixtapes, photos, videos and more as we share with you our diverse tastes. We hope you discover something new and awesome, and we'd love for you to share some of YOUR favourites in the comments sections.


Clone Wars Recap S4 E04: Shadow Warrior!

I always get flack for being the Star Wars apologist. I love Star Wars with every fibre of my squandered being. See us talking one on one right now? See that glazed look in my eyes? That's right. I'm looking at you but I'm thinking about Star Wars.

So it was a heart-punch that the first three episodes of season four of The Clone Wars kind of left me cold. And damp. And soggy in places. So it brings me a surge of almost unsettling pleasure to inform you that the newest episode Shadow Warrior was ultimately a triumphant return to form, for me. Not only did I greatly enjoy the episode, but it was primarily about Gungans, and starred that floppy fish-eared rapscallion Jar Jar Binks!

So join me after the jump, where I intend to thoroughly school you on why Clone Wars is back, and Jar Jar is awesome!... This is very much a recap this time. (MESA THINKIN' THERE BE BOMBAD SPOILERS!)

Project Runway Recaps: S09 E10

Things are getting a little Lord of the Flies on Project Runway. People are getting very suspicious and weird! Or maybe that's just the editing and music. But it sure does feel dramatic!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Entertainment Weekly Cover Showcases 3rd Runner Up in Avengers Photoshop Competition!

Okay, so this playfully pasted Avengers group shot on the cover of Entertainment Weekly isn't exactly breaking news, but my commentary is new! And, hey, sometimes you need a little time to reflect!

So feast your hungry eyes on this sextet of super-powered heads:

And then join me after the jump for some further thoughts!...

DC Reboot Review: Firestorm #1, Green Lantern New Guardians #1, I Vampire #1, Teen Titans #1, Justice League Dark #1

Here it is, folks, my last batch of issue one reviews for September's DC reboot! (and it is officially October her now anyway). I bravely dived into five of the slightly more obscure titles: The Fury of Firestorm #1, Green Lantern New Guardians #1, I Vampire #1, Teen Titans #1, and Justice League Dark #1.

But were they any good? Which way will my hyperbole wildly swing? There was actually one book that I really enjoyed a lot, and one that might just be my new contender for the worst. Find out which is which after the jump! (SPOILERS):

DC 52 Reboot Recap!

I know it's been well covered already but I just had to chime in on the first month of DC's 52 reboot. This month has marked the first time I've bought comics (aside from the occasional graphic novels) in years and years.  It's been a lot of fun for me going to the store every week and trying to find the issues that I wanted!  I know I can't buy this many titles every month but trying all the new comics has been great fun as well.  Now I just have to decide which issue #2's I'll buy.   
 The issue #1's that I decided to try and a brief evaluation of each after the jump!

Thank Gif It's Friday

Via Gifbin.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Okkervil River: Your Past Life As A Blast

My favourite band, Okkervil River, have just posted a new music video. That warrants a post, right?

Via their website.

Star Trek on BluRay!!!

I meant to say something about this yesterday, but you know how it is “busy, busy, busy”. I had comics to read! (more on that later) Anyway, the official Star Trek site announced on their Twitter yesterday that Star Trek: The Next Generation is FINALLY coming to BluRay in 2012.

Have a press release!: Press Release-y Goodness

It’s been kind of a poorly kept secret for a while now, but it’s now been made official. First will be a sampler disk in January, containing the two-hour pilot Encounter at Farpoint, and two other (award winning) episodes, Sins of the Father and The Inner Light. The seasons, titled Star Trek: the Next Generation – The Next Level, will start showing up after that.

It’s actually a really cool thing that couldn’t have been done just a couple of years ago. Apparently, even though the actors were all filmed on stock that can be scanned and converted to HD quality, ALL of the show’s special effects were composited in such a way that they could not. In other words, in order to do this, CBS (the owners of Star Trek) have had to redo every last effect over 178 total episodes.
I’m gonna be so broke…and I’m already getting excited wondering when they’re gonna announce Deep Space Nine, too.

Via Star Trek Official Website

Is That a Beaker Figure in Your Pocket or Are You Just Happy to See Me?

You can close your mouth now.

Yeah, it's me. I've got something else for you. My goal, believe it or not, is to actually get to a point where I am posting here, at blogzilly and at Mission: iPossible EVERY DAY.

It's totally doable, and I know HOW to do it, I just have to put the plan together and make it happen. Back in the day, when I was writing for the Palisades Toys website, I wrote multiple things for the website, and I kept a spreadsheet for it. I planned the posts in advance, I grabbed stuff I needed, I organized files, I kept it greased up like a giant pair a well-oiled machine.

That's what I need to do. Content? I got. Ideas? I got. Time? I actually got SOME of. Skills? Debatable. The issue has been getting my rounded melon-shaped cue ball of a head uncorked from my beautifully shaped and freshly-shorn buttocks.

It was one of Fruitless Pursuits fearless leaders, Uncle Miltie, who suggested that get I back into the swing of things a wee bit as I work toward this Master Plan and post something about Jim Henson, who would have recently celebrated a birthday, since I have such a connection, especially online, with The Muppets, because of the work I did on the Palisades Toys line of Muppet action figures, playsets and other fun stuff.

I can picture that.

Some News You Just Have to Post...

And walk away...

Chicago, Illinois has been named the "most mustache friendly city in America". Yes. I'm serious. The problem is, I'm not sure how serious they are. The press release is fraught with quotes like:
"With a long-existing pattern of social and professional discrimination against Mustached Americans, AMI behavioral economists sought to better understand which top-performing metropolitan areas provide the most nourishing opportunities and livable communities for people of Mustached American descent."

More fur-lipped insanity after the jump.

Recap: America's Next Top Model Season 17, Episode 3

I hope you appreciate what I'm doing for you here. 

Luxirare - sudden burning need to drown myself in leather and truffle oil

Every once and a while I come across a blog so monumental that I'm sort of astonished it isn't a household name, and Luxirare is probably the biggest of these.

Amazingness below the break!  (ALL photos from Luxirare)

DC Reboot Review: The Dark Knight #1, Superman #1, Aquaman #1, The Flash #1, Savage Hawkman #1

Today marks the final batch of new #1's for September's much hyped DC reboot. I bought 10 out of 13 books this time, so I'll be reviewing in two parts. This part will cover Batman The Dark Knight #1, Superman #1, Aquaman #1, The Flash #1, and Savage Hawkman #1, and boy do we have plenty to talk about!

Remember how last week's releases got the timid, wholesome fanboys all in a prudish tizzy because of the overt sexuality of both Catwoman and Starfire? Well, we can all relax! This week DC makes amends for its depiction of women by giving Batman a new strong female villain, The White Rabbit...

See?! Nothing to get upset about! Join me after the jump where I'll make with the sexy talk and tell you everything that went down. There will be spoilers, but we're going to have a lot of fun!

Full Size Lego SUV Costs More Than The Real Thing

This was submitted by my mom! The demographic of Fruitless Pursuits is shifting as we speak. Next we will be reporting on the weather in Florida and the Conrad Murray trial.

Actually my mom still keeps up with the toys that I buy. It's very important because I'm 32 years old and Christmas is only a few months away.

Anyway, here's the video. 22 builders built a full size Ford Explorer in 2500 hours. It's made up of 380,000 Lego bricks, which we all know costs about a million dollars. According to Lego it's about $40,000. But still!

Also, there's a bunch of unofficial 2012 Lego news and pictures working it's way around the internet. Star Wars Hoth board game in the style of Heroica? I cannot wait.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pixel Lincoln: The Gameplay

Originally posted at For more developer blogs on Pixel Lincoln and other games in-progress, visit

After two weeks of describing the initial card game, and the team behind the game, we're finally ready to discuss the actual game! So what is Pixel Lincoln all about?

Pixel Lincoln is a side-scrolling video game, with retro-styled graphics, inspired by such classics as Super Mario Bros. 3 (simplicity), MegaMan 2 (difficulty), and Earthbound (humor).

Deja View - The Blog of Andreas Deja

Andreas Deja was one Disney's top animators. He's not currently there, but in the past he was lead animator of such characters as The Lion King's Scar, Jafar from Aladdin, Lilo of Lilo and Stitch, Roger Rabbit and most recently, Tigger in Winnie the Pooh.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Pilot Recap: Terra Nova

Last night I watched Terra Nova, which apparently was a big deal? Even my mum has heard of it. You know there is a lot of buzz when my mum has heard of a thing! Unfortunately my mum has not seen it, which is a pity because I would like to read her recap. Instead I should ask her to recap all the British murder mysteries she watches. They would all end with "and then I woke up and your father told me the suspicious under-gardener was the murderer."

Anyway. Dinosaurs and spoilers below!

What's Out? Week of 28th of September

Your comic shop is about to get a tasty shipment today! But who can keep track of all the nonsense coming out? Me, that's who! You can too just by peeking below:

Gloria Picktoria - An Illustrated Review

Pilot Recap: The Playboy Club

Ah, pilot season! The magical time of year when we're bombarded with a million tv shows none of us will care about in a few months! There are so many to pick through, how do you know if they're worth an hour of your precious time? Well, Fruitless Pursuits is here to help. You have probably already seen Jess's excellent recaps of Ringer, Unforgettable and The Secret Circle and have either tee'd them up to record or crossed them off your list, so now it's time to grab your key and visit The Playboy Club with me.

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Book Was Better Episode 3: The Day After Tomorrow!

Holy balls you guys, the third episode of our podcast The Book Was Better is maybe the best one yet! For your lolling pleasure we read the novelisation of The Day After Tomorrow, a Roland Emmerich explosion film, and discuss the political implications of a right-wing reading of global warming things that sound dirty. Go download it at our site or just subscribe through iTunes to get it delivered fresh each fortnight!

"I will eat your soul."

Glorious Bounty book 3 page 5!

Where's Glorious Bounty been the last couple of weeks? I've been sick, sorry. And we are terrible and don't have a buffer (my fault). But, hey, I'm at 85% now, so Glorious Bounty returns! It's been so long, you may have forgotten what's been going down. You can click here to read the current book from the start.

Or read this tiny recap: As we know, Bruce has someone else's face stitched onto his head, and no memory of who he is or how that came to be. Deevis has promised to help Bruce discover his past, and has brought him to a robot building 'friend' of his (Kruckus). Only there's a little bad-blood between them. Meanwhile PK is very unimpressed...

All things Glorious Bounty can be found on the site.

Doctor Who S06 E12 Closing Time

We're one episode away from the finale, and at this stage I'm assuming that it's pretty much going to cause everyone's brains to bleed out of their ears. Through confusion or awesomeness, I'm not yet sure, but I'm confident on the bleeding part. 'Closing Time' bought back a favourite classic villain and favourite recent companion to presumably act as a nice fluffy cushion between the 'Oh, I'm so ronery' of last week, and next week's carnage. Read on to find out what went down!

DC Reboot Rewrite! Let's Rewrite Red Hood and the Outlaws #1

I've taken it upon myself to help DC Comics out by rewriting some of the new numbers one in their September reboot! The books are already pretty great, but I'm helping them see them through the eyes of a new reader! Yesterday I rewrote pages of Green Lantern Corps and Batman and Robin! But what about the book that the whole Internet is talking about? Yes. I rewrote a page of Red Hood and the Outlaws #1!

Does my new, original script help or hinder this book? You be the judge...

The real Red Hood and the Outlaws is written by Scott Lobdell. This is art is by Kenneth Rocafort. You can buy the real thing from your local comics store!

Kickstart the Week: Famous Missions - A card game by J. Tagmire

Our new weekly feature is Kickstart the Week, a chance for us to feature a Kickstarter project and to provide something refreshing and creative to balance out the usual Monday ugggghhs.

I'm starting off with my own card game project, Famous Missions. I didn't originally intend for this feature to start off with one of our own, but both the feature and Famous Missions launch dates fell on the same date.

Click here to help fund this project:

Or click through the jump for some more details.

Pilot Recap: The Secret Circle

The Secret Circle, otherwise known as Magic Teens!, was actually not as completely terrible as you might expect. If it were a movie, it would probably be a trashy guilty pleasure, although I don’t think I care enough to keep watching it as a TV show. But there was still plenty to make fun of! Spoilers beneath the cut.

Happy (Belated) Birthday, Jim Henson! Here's Our Personal Henson Collections!

Saturday 24th of September would have been the 75th birthday of legendary creator, director, puppeteer and philanthropist Jim Henson. Perhaps you caught Google's animated tribute which allowed you to puppet Henson creatures shaped like the title letters.

Many of us here are big fans who have been inspired by Jim and his work so - as we discussed on the most recent Fruitless Pursuitscast - we figured that this might be a good opportunity for us to share some of our favourite Henson related items that we've managed to collect over the years! I was certainly interested in seeing some of the stranger items that were mentioned on the show.

Join us after the jump to view our rare, felty treasures...

Metal Mondays - Undoubtedly the most awesome metal musical theatre cover ever

The glorious Nightwish, now disbanded but fondly remembered, once did an incredibly epic cover of the main theme of Phantom of the Opera. And you have to admit, the original was halfway to metal anyhow. There were chromatic scales, it was huge and bombastic, there was an organ for gods sakes, it had all the hallmarks of a big old metal faceburner. There's no visuals to accompany it (no filmclip) but here is the audio accompanied by a dubious album cover:

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Pilot Recap: Unforgettable

One of the pilots I've been most looking forward to is Unforgettable, a crime drama about a lady who can solve crimes because she has a super-photographic memory and never forgets anything! And it didn't disappoint: it was every bit as stupid as I was hoping. Spoilers under the cut!

Weekly Re-Crap - Week ending September 25th

And now it's time for our Weekly Re-crap, where you can browse through everything we posted in the last 7 days. It's all organized by type too, so you can skip right over an entire category if you wanted. Do you hate board games, but love comics? The Weekly Re-Crap is here for you.

Click through the jump for the big list. 39 posts in 10 categories.

Fruitless Pursuitscast - Episode Two

Since none of us we're impaled by the falling satellite, we celebrated by discussing the latest week in news (and non-news too!) This time the group consisted of Fruitless Pursuits contributors Luke Milton, Mike Taylor, J. Tagmire, and Mike Wickliff.

This week's topics:
-Star Wars: The Old Republic release date
-Gears of War 3
-Diablo 3
-Vintage Trading Cards
-DC Reboot (and naked Starfire)
-Jim Henson's 75th Birthday
-Mattel's Toy Subscription Service Issues

We're still sorting out our the audio setup, but if you can get past a little distortion, or the occasional robot interruption... give it a listen! Let us know what you think.

Click to stream. Right click to download.
Fruitless Pursuitscast - Episode Two

And finally, the Fruitless Pursuitscast is now available on iTunes! Click the link below to visit our iTunes store page for easy subscriptions and a fancy podcast mini-logo.

DC Reboot Rewrite! Let's Rewrite Batman and Robin #1!

OK, so I already rewrote a page of Green Lantern Corps. Now I've decided to help out DC by rewriting a page of Batman and Robin #1. Confused about the relationship between Batman and his son? Don't worry! I have you covered, with my original new dialogue! This is how my version would have gone down!...

If you have a comics page that you think I should rewrite send it to me at contact@fruitlesspursuits, or link it to me in the comments section!

Disney does Wicked


Now, I like Wicked a LOT (three times in just over a month and I'm suffering WITHDRAWLS), and being a kid who grew up in the 90s I'm obviously a fan of old-school Disney movies, but when I saw there was a legit mock-up going around with a view to pitch Wicked as a Disney adaption, I thought 'Yeahhhh I don't know how I'd really feel about that'.

And then I watched it.

This was done by Disney animator Heidi Jo Gilbert to try and convince Stephen Schwartz (Wicked's writer) that an animated version would be a much better idea than the live-action movie that is in the pipeline. And not just animated, TRADITIONALLY animated. Nothing wrong with Pixar, but give me the good old Beauty and the Beast 'characters over watercolour paintings' style that I grew up with any day. The animatic is obviously very basic, but I definitely get a bit of an Aladdin vibe from it. Probably all know...defying of gravity on inanimate objects. Hurk hurk.

Defying Gravity Storyboards from Heidi Jo Gilbert on Vimeo.

Doctor Who S06 E11 The God Complex

Now, I guess technically you COULD say this review is late, but really, the episode only just aired in Australia last night, so how was I supposed to see it before then? *cough* The real reason is I spent a week trying to work out how on earth I was supposed to deconstruct this episode. It was near-on perfect, and to break it down into sections in my normal 'the good, the bad, and the ugly' style would have done it a disservice. Head below the cut for a slightly different take on the episode than normal.

DC Reboot Rewrite! Let's Re-Write Green Lantern Corps #1!

I'm enjoying the DC Reboot but that's not to say that some books couldn't use a helping hand. I fancy myself as a bit of a writer, so I figured, why not be constructive and help DC rewrite some of them! These books can be confusing for new readers, so I'm going to help them find out everything they need to know!

I rewrote this page of Green Lantern Corps #1. Read my new, original dialogue and tell me if it helps you understand what these characters are really about!

I'm gonna' be in so much trouble... :(