01st Aug2014

West Week Ever – 8/1/14

by Will

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Like a good fanboy, I went to see Guardians of the Galaxy last night and I LOVED IT. A little known fact about me is that I hate Space Marvel. Even though I started reading comics in the era of The Infinity Gauntlet and all that, that stuff just never clicked with me. So, I’ve never cared about Thanos or the Infinity Gems or any of that. So, I went into this movie with its subject matter being a little out of my wheelhouse. That was probably for the best, however, as it meant that I didn’t have the typical fanboy quibbles that tend to arise with comic movies. The cast was superb. I mean, Zoe Saldana got lost in that role, while Chris Pratt is gonna be a big star. Batista was thoroughly entertaining, and Rocket did exactly what Rocket was supposed to do. The 3-D was incredible. I hadn’t intended to see it in 3-D, but I mistakenly thought there was a midnight showing when the last show was a 10:45 3-D showing. There were parts when I really thought weapons flying at me were gonna hit me. Anyway, it’s a great movie and I can’t wait to see it again. I am, however, curious to see how they tie all the “spaceness” of this movie into the “real worldness” of the other Marvel films. Sure, they fought aliens in The Avengers, but those were faceless grunts and haven’t really been dealt with since. Whatever. I’m sure I have nothing to worry about.


While waiting for Guardians to start, I saw the trailer for Annie starring Quvenzhane Wallis. It actually looks really cute, but I’m dreading all of the comment sections of websites I’m gonna have to avoid once that trailer hits TV. It’ll be a whopping “Why are they remaking Annie?”, with a smattering of “Why are they making her black?” Yeah, it’s gonna be a riot…

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San Diego Comic Con came and went, and there were no real clear winners or losers. Marvel didn’t reveal any of their upcoming “mystery” movies, while DC didn’t announce the movie slate that Nikki Finke had leaked a few months back. The omissions were more glaring than what was present. There was no Star Wars Episode VII news, no Jurassic World footage, and nothing from the Fantastic Four reboot. I’m not gonna do a full-scale SDCC recap, as there are other sites for that. I’ll touch on a few things, though.

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Following the debut of some Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice footage, we finally got our first look at Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman suit. I don’t hate it. I just hope it’s her introductory suit and that she eventually ends up in something with some color to it. Twitter was on fire Saturday when the photo was released, but it didn’t move me one way or another. It’s kinda Xena-esque, but isn’t that what it should be? Maybe she comes to Man’s World in this suit, and adopts her more colorful suit later. Who knows? I still haven’t seen Man of Steel, so that shows how much I care about that whole movie universe right now.


Shout Factory announced that they would be distributing Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger on DVD in the US. This is the show from which the original Power Rangers footage came, so this is a pretty big deal. Up til now, fans were forced to watch subtitled versions that were encoded by other, more die-hard fans. Contrary to the kids show that we got in the US, Zyruranger is a much darker product, and I’m looking forward to finally being able to watch it without having to resort to torrents.

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I finally got around to seeing The LEGO Movie. Man, was that good! I didn’t expect to like it, as I didn’t think any of the trailers looked that funny, nor did you get a good idea of the plot. So, I was pleasantly surprised when I got the disc from Redbox. Did I mention that Chris Pratt is gonna be a big deal? And I LOVED Will Arnett as Douchebag Batman. Anyway, I’m slowly starting to realize that I’m a LEGO fan, which is surprising to me. Up til now, I’ve considered myself more of a LEGO Broker – I find them cheap, and I sell them high. I never stop to think about my personal collection unless it concerns minifigures. I loves me some minifigures. Lately, though, I find myself going to the LEGO Store when I don’t have to, and I found myself disappointed when I realized I’ll be out of town for BrickFair. What’s happening to me?! Am I becoming an Adult Fan of LEGO?

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Did you catch Sharknado 2: The Second One on Wednesday night? If not, you missed a great time. Sure, it’s a bad movie, but it fostered such a sense of community with folks online. I haven’t had that much fun livetweeting since Catfish‘s season ended. If you missed it, try to catch the rerun, as it’s worth it just for the D-list cameos.

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Since I finished The Cleveland Show, I’ve been looking for another light show to binge-watch on Netflix. I ran across a show called Trailer Park Boys that looked kinda interesting. This Canadian show lasted 7 seasons, so it must be good, right? WRONG. I couldn’t get through 2 episodes of this thing. Basically, it’s a mockumentary, like The Office, that focuses on the residents of a trailer park in Nova Scotia, so there’s a lot of dudes talking directly to the camera. This is a big Canadian franchise, with movies and stage shows and everything, but it just goes to show that there’s a different type of humor across the border. Sad, ’cause I really liked other Canadian comedies, like Corner Gas. Anyway, I might give the show another shot, but I might just move on to Better Off Ted.

partners

Speaking of TV, next week sees the debut of two perplexing shows. The first one is Partners, airing on FX. What’s so odd about it? Well, it stars Kelsey Grammer and Martin Lawrence as legal partners. Yes, Frasier Crane and Marty-Mar, in a buddy comedy. Who knows? Maybe it’ll be like Nothing To Lose (anyone remember that movie?), but I don’t expect much. This is another example of a 10/90 deal, which is all the rage in television right now. Oh, you don’t know what a 10/90 deal is? Well, allow me to educate you. 10/90 deals were created by production company Debmar-Mercury, where 10 episodes of a show are created as a sort of “test drive”. If those episodes reach a certain ratings threshold, they will then make 90 more episodes, which basically gets the show to instant syndication. Tyler Perry’s comedies House of Payne and Meet The Browns followed this model, as well as Charlie Sheen’s Anger Management. Anyway, I can see why Martin needs a job, but does Kelsey owe that much in alimony that he’s got to keep working? I mean, he made a shitload of money there at the end of Frasier, yet he’s been working on failed shows ever since (Back To You, Hank, Boss). Anyway, I miss seeing Martin on TV, so I’ll at least check out a few episodes.

The next show that’s already got people riled up is Black Jesus, from Boondocks creator Aaron McGruder. If you haven’t heard of this project, here’s the trailer:

Do I really even need to say more? I mean, blasphemy aside, it doesn’t even look funny. Early episodes of The Boondocks had a cleverness to them, while this just seems like it’s an attempt to see how many groups it can offend. Conservative Christians? Blacks? Mexicans? They’re all there. Maybe the trailer wasn’t cut to show us the funniest  material, but I had come to expect more from McGruder. Just looking at the YouTube comments, I can already see problems looming that are reminiscent of Chappelle’s Show. Dave once said that he quit the show because he realized that folks had started laughing at him during some of the skits instead of with him. There is a difference, and I could see that happening here. Is the audience getting the same joke that McGruder is trying to tell, or are they laughing at the whole farce of it? This show is gonna be problematic…

courtesy of AwesomeToyBlog.com

courtesy of AwesomeToyBlog.com

In toy news, Hasbro showed off Marvel Legends figures of Maria Hill and Agent Coulson from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Since I collect movie-specific Marvel Legends, I will DEFINITELY be getting these. I fear that they’ll be pretty hard to find, though, since Hill’s a female figure, and Coulson comes with that suit body that customizer’s are gonna want to snatch up. So, I may have to turn to Twitter connections in order to track these down.

courtesy of AwesomeToyBlog.com

courtesy of AwesomeToyBlog.com

 

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This week, *NSYNC released a new double-CD collection and the group didn’t even know about it. Ya see, it was one of those cash grab “Essential” collections that doesn’t contain any new material. Still, it entered the charts in the Top 10, so it’s got people clamoring for a reunion again. It’s got some deep cuts on it that were never on albums but, being a true *NSYNC fan, I’ve had those songs for years. Yeah, I’m a boyband snob.

Links I Loved
NEW EP: Reappropriate: The Podcast – Ep. 2 | “Thinking Man” Superhero Movies – Reappropriate

5 Ways to Bring G.I. Joe Back to Television – UnderScoopFire!

Meet The Guardians of the [LEGO] Galaxy – Double Dumbass On You

ATB

I may not talk about him, especially since I assume that all of my internet friends know each other, but there’s one friend in particular who’s my favorite person on the internet. Matt Guzy runs AwesomeToyBlog.com, and he’s always my go-to source for San Diego Comic Con news, as he seems to be able to get closer to some companies than other sites. Why is he my favorite person on the internet? Well, there are so many reasons (he designed my website banner, for one), but he solidified that status when he did this:

Those are the Power Rangers! THE POWER RANGERS SAID MY NAME!!!!!! Matt got the chance to meet the current cast of Power Rangers Super Megaforce for a Q&A session at SDCC. Before leaving for the show, he’d asked me for some ideas on questions to ask them, but I had no idea they’d actually find out my name. I may be heavily biased, but it’s my site and I can do what I want. If you want to see some great galleries of the toys from SDCC, head over to AwesomeToyBlog.com. But because he got the Power Rangers…the friggin’ POWER RANGERS to say my name, @MattGuzy had the West Week Ever.

02nd May2014

West Week Ever – 5/2/14

by Will

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I haven’t RedBoxed or Netflixed in weeks, so I don’t really have anything to discuss on that front. I did catch a new standup special on Comedy Central, though – Tracy Morgan: Bona Fide. And it was HORRIBLE. I think I laughed once. I know he used to be a funny guy, so I’m not sure what happened. Maybe he’s just not good at standup? That was what people were saying when he got in trouble for his homophobic rant in his last standup. Maybe he was playing it safe so he didn’t get in trouble again. Either way, it was not an enjoyable hour.

stand up month

It’s currently “Stand Up Month” for Comedy Central and Comedy Central Radio, which is an odd concept. I mean, shouldn’t every month be Stand Up Month? It’s like if MTV christened Music Month or something. Anyway, as part of Stand Up Month, they’ve premiered a new one hour special every Sunday night. I watched Morgan’s, but I listened to Jim Gaffigan: Obsessed and Hannibal Buress: Live From Chicago. Both were what you’d expect from their respective stars. Gaffigan did the whole “subliminal voice” thing that he does, while Buress wasn’t as funny as he’d been in past specials. Still, both specials were WAY funnier than Tracy Morgan. If you’ve got Spotify, you can listen to them there.

 

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Speaking of TV, History Channel is creating Pawnography, which is basically Pawn Stars: The Game Show. In the show, contestants will answer trivia from the Pawn Stars cast in order to win items from Rick Harrison’s personal collection. This would be interesting if Rick actually knew a damn thing about most of his items. Instead, they should focus on Rick’s “experts” that he calls on when he needs information on an item. I haven’t watched Pawn Stars in about a year, as it just got too formulaic for me, but I’ll check out a few episodes of this game show.


We FINALLY have a premiere date for Girl Meets World – Friday, June 27th!

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They announced the Star Wars Episode VII cast this week, and I’ve got nothing. I don’t know any of these people except Adam Driver, and he’s got the kind of face that you just wanna punch. It’s pretty cool that a black guy is the lead this time around, but I’ve yet to see Attack The Block, so I can’t say anything about his acting chops. The one thing I noticed about that released pic, however, is Harrison Ford’s pit stain. Once you see it, you’ll never not see it.

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It’s no secret that I love every episode of American Dad where Steve sings. Luckily, the Boyz 12 episode is one of the best examples of this, and it aired on Adult Swim this week. In fact, it’s the second time it’s aired in the past month, but I’m not complaining! The episode led me to directly tweet Seth MacFarlane, asking him to put all of Steve’s songs on iTunes. I don’t even use iTunes, but you bet I would if I could get those tracks! I wish I could show you that I got a reply from him, but it apparently fell on deaf ears. Or deaf keyboard. Whatever you’re supposed to say in a digital society. Anyway, there doesn’t seem to be a high quality video of the song, but here’s what it sounds like:

 

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This week, it was announced that Nick Carter of the Backstreet Boys and Jordan Knight of NKOTB have formed a duo, called Nick & Knight. I’m not making this up. I’m not sure what to think of it. On the one hand, Jordan’s “Give It To You” was one of the best pop songs of the late 90s. On the other hand, Nick didn’t even make a splash when he attempted a solo career. As a boyband fiend, I can’t say that I’m “excited”, per se, but I’m am intrigued. Not only are they releasing an album in September, but they’re also going on tour. If you wanna hear their first single, “Just The Two Of Us”, Perez Hilton has the clip. I’m not blown away by it, but it could be a lot worse.

Death of Wolverine -- exclusive EW.com image

The “Death of Wolverine” storyline was announced this week from Marvel Comics. I haven’t read a single article about it, so I can’t speak with any real authority on it. I’ve got no interest in it whatsoever. “Death” has become such a commonplace gimmick in comics that it doesn’t mean a thing anymore. What it equates to is a really long nap until the character is needed again. I’d be more inclined to read these stories if they’d just call them that, like “Wolverine’s Yearlong Nap”. I’m already filled with a ton of questions. How is he sleeping for so long? Is anyone cutting his hair? Are they feeding him through tubes? That angle is kinda interesting. Wolverine’s “death”, however, means nothing to me. It also doesn’t help that there was a “The Death of Wolverine” storyline only 5 years ago. Have fun with that, Marvel.

Sterling

I don’t talk a lot about sports ’cause I really don’t know what I’m talking about. I do, however, know my TMZ. Over the past week, TMZ acquired recorded phone conversations between LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling and his alleged girlfriend. In those conversations, he told her that he didn’t know why she broadcasts the fact that she hangs around with black people. This was the result of her posting a picture of herself on Instagram with Magic Johnson (btw, follow me on Instagram! @williambrucewest). This resulted in a lifetime ban by the NBA, as well as a $2.5M fine. I guess they needed to make an example of him to show that those sorts of attitudes won’t be tolerated. It’s an interesting contrast to the Marge Schott situation. Schott owned the Cincinnati Reds back when I was still collecting baseball cards (Upper Deck had cool holograms!), and she was known for saying “nigger” left and right. She was only banned for 2 seasons. It wasn’t until she said that Hitler was a good leader that things started to go downhill for her. Facing a third suspension and failing health, she sold her majority stake in the team. At the moment, Sterling insists he won’t sell, while the NBA says they’ll do everything in their power to force a sale. So, comparing the two events, it makes me wonder if Major League Baseball didn’t do enough to Schott, or if the NBA went too far with Sterling. A lot of energy went towards getting him ousted this week, and it worked. It’s dangerous to have people with those views in positions of power. That said, this is only one rich racist. They’re like hydra, and I’m not sure this really makes a dent in the problem. If anything, it’ll just make those people more careful with whom they share their views, but it won’t stop them from having the views. I find the whole thing fascinating, but I’m not sure if I’m satisfied.

Links I Loved

The Secret History Of Britney Spears’ Lost Album – Buzzfeed

33 Amazingly Useful Websites You Never Knew Existed – Buzzfeed

The 10 Worst Slime Toys – The Robot’s Pajamas

Power Ranking the Plentiful Pop Culture Acronyms of the 80s – UnderScoopFire!

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This has quickly turned into Will’s Black Person of the Week. I swear that wasn’t the original intent, but blacks folks be blowin’ up! I may not know who dude is, but I’m not alone. That said, everyone will know who he is for a LONG, LONG time once Star Wars Episode VII comes out. Unless, of course, he ends up like Jake Lloyd. Still, his name was on everyone’s lips this week, and he’s helping a galaxy far, far away to become more diverse. Sure, there are folks who might ask “Wasn’t Mace Windu enough?” or “Where’s the female diversity?”, but I’ve got nothing to really say about that. After all, I’m a Trekker at heart, so it’s amazing I’m even going all out for a Star Wars casting announcement. Yet, here we are. So, for being the guy most likely to have his TIE Fighter pulled over by the space cops, John Boyega is having the West Week Ever.

24th Jan2014

West Week Ever – 1/24/14

by Will

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So, this week I spent a lot of my time watching standup specials. When all was said and done, I had watched three, but laughed very little. First up was Neal Brennan: Women and Black Dudes. Brennan may not be a household name, but he should be as he co-created Chappelle’s Show. Since the show ended, he’s been making a name for himself as a standup comedian, and he’s got some pretty funny stuff based around race relations and perceptions. His funniest bit is that he’s friends with a lot of black guys who call him “the N-word”. He says that it happens so much that he finds himself calling himself that word when no one’s around. You need to watch the special to get the whole gist of it, but it was pretty funny.

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Next up was Chris D’elia: White Man, Black Comic. D’elia’s most recent role was as Whitney Cummings’s boyfriend in Whitney, but he’s been doing standup for years. Most of his his act revolves around accents and how women are crazy. To be honest, I thought his Comedy Central half hour special was funnier, but I won’t hold it against him too much. This isn’t the special to watch if you want his best stuff, but if you’re already a fan, you should check it out.

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Finally, I caught Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain on Netflix. Kinda like with D’elia, this wasn’t his best work, but it shows that his act has matured, as he opens up about his infidelity and how it helped him grow as a man. There are a lot of funny bits in the special, but I expected to bust a gut. That didn’t happen.

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While I was on the comedy kick, I wanted to watch more, but didn’t feel like sitting through an entire special. So, I decided to finally give Portlandia a chance. I don’t say this much, but I think it just might be too white for me. I mean, I got a few laughs out of it, but it’s SO niche. I guess you could say that I came for Fred Armisen, but stayed for Carrie Brownstein – who has an aloof cuteness about her. I’m only 2 episodes in, but I think I’ll power through and see what the rest of the series has to offer.

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It’s been sitting on my DVR since about October, but I finally sat down and watched CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story. Before the jokes start, no, it was not a movie about The Learning Channel! I never really processed that TLC basically had the same career trajectory as a boyband. They released 3 albums in about 10 years and then disappeared. The movie suffered from too much creative license. Like The Temptations, events coincided too often in order to make the story more compelling. Left Eye’s dad dies the same day the girls are signed. Chili finds out she’s pregnant the very day she’s asked to rejoin the group. It also skipped a few important parts, such as Left Eye signing the girl group BLAQUE to her label, as well as R U The Girl? – the UPN reality show designed to replace the deceased Left Eye in the group. I still say the second verse of “Waterfalls”, with its oversimplification of HIV, makes no sense whatever.

Timonium

I started the week off by going to a toy show in Timonium, MD. In my mind, the show sucked. Pretty hard. The silver lining, however, was that I got to meet @smurfwreck and @shezcrafti in the flesh! Above is my meager haul from the show. Mr. Sinister only cost me $5, and he’s an addition to my X-Men Marvel Legends collection. Doom was carded and cost me $10 – he’s an addition to my Marvel movie figure collection. Finally, K.A.R.R. cost me $7, which was about half what folks were charging for it at Baltimore Comic-Con. I’d actually found K.A.R.R. a few months back, but @smurfwreck seemed to want it more than I did (I really wanted K.I.T.T. and hadn’t found him yet at that point), so I had sold it to him. Now that I have K.I.T.T., the “brothers” can now hang out on my wall together.

thriftj

Something hit a little too close to home this week. As you probably know, I tend to write a column called Thrift Justice, where I talk about stuff I’ve recently picked up at thrift stores. For quite some time, I was the only thing that came up in Google searches for “Thrift Justice”. Then, the other night, The Colbert Report decided to use the phrase in their The Word segment. It’s odd, because it seemed to have nothing to do with the topic at hand – the diminishing supply of execution drugs. After watching the segment, I’m hardpressed to understand where or how that phrase even entered into the discussion. Anyway, now my Google hits have been pushed down by political blogs linking to his segment. Too bad I couldn’t get any traffic out of the who ordeal. I had actually let the ThriftJustice.com url lapse, but the minute @OAFE tweeted that Colbert had used the phrase, I immediately renewed the domain – just to cover my ass.

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No one had a week like Richard Sherman. Even if you’re not a fan of sportsball, you no doubt know his name by now. Following the Seattle Seahawks’ NFC championship win, Sherman went OFF on Michael Crabtree of the San Francisco 49ers. We all joked that he “cut a promo”, like a WWE wrestler. He also decided to declare himself the best corner in the game. So, there were accusations that he was a “thug” and that his outburst showed a lack of class. Supporters have said that we have no idea the emotions he must have been feeling, and that we can’t judge him on that. My favorite thing floating around is the whole matter that Sherman graduated from Stanford, so “…not only is he not a fool, odds are he’s smarter than you and me.” Hold on there, sportswriter. I have an Ivy League degree, in just as useless of a major, so we’re probably on the same level when it comes to smarts. He’s just better at football. But I digress. All eyes will definitely be on Sherman during The Super Bowl, and he’s probably responsible for the creation of a few new Broncos fans. In any case, you couldn’t get through the news this week without hearing about Richard Sherman, and that’s why he had the West Week Ever.

17th Oct2013

The Big Reunion Returns Pop Stars to the Limelight

by Will

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So, I’m kinda burnt out right now. I’ve been binge-consuming media, and that always leaves me feeling empty. Over the weekend, I binge-read the Vertigo series Scalped, and I’ll probably do an Adventures West Coast post on it one of these days. After that, it turned out my work computer had a virus on it, leaving me with 2 days and an iPad to do nothing. While researching the reunion of UK pop group Steps, I learned that the UK has been on quite the pop reunion kick as of late. It turns out that there was a show earlier this year, called The Big Reunion, which reunited 6 pop groups from the ’90s and ’00s, including 5ive, Atomic Kitten, The Honeyz, Liberty X, 911, and B*Witched. If you were a casual pop fan, or just anyone with a radio in 1999, then you at least know 5ive and B*Witched. The others never really made it across the pond, but I knew about them. Anyway, I had 8 hrs and nothing to do, so I binge-watched the entire The Big Reunion season on YouTube. On the show, the members had to confront the issues they’d had since breaking up, then they had to train with choreographers and a vocal coach for what was supposed to be one big reunion concert (which later turned into an arena tour). Anyway, now I’ve got pop on the brain, and I figured I’d do some thinking out loud, and bring you along for the ride.

5ive

5ive were basically *NSYNC with accents. They were a little more rough around the edges, but had the same songwriters and producers. Their biggest hit in the US was “When The Lights Go Out:

On the show, only 4 of the guys agreed to come back. They tried to audition other people to fill that fifth spot, but they end up just staying a 4-piece. Or, 4our, if you will. Like most boybands, most of them suffered from substance abuse and/or depression, but most of them are all happy family men at this point.

Atomic Kitten

These girls never made it to these shores, but think of the Spice Girls as a trio, without the whole “spice” gimmick. That’s Atomic Kitten. Their big breakout hit was “Right Now”:

Who can guess which one was my favorite? This group’s important to me because group member Kerry Katona married Brian McFadden of Westlife – my favorite group in the world. Then he cheated on her with a stripper or something…On the show, AK didn’t have much drama to deal with as they didn’t have an acrimonious breakup. Kerry had actually left the group before it exploded, but she’d gone on to being a reality show fixture. They replaced her and became megastars. Still, Kerry didn’t seem bitter, and they got along like no time had passed.

The Honeyz

This group never really went anywhere, as their lineup wouldn’t stick long enough for them to accomplish anything. Their biggest hit was “Finally Found” – which doesn’t even exist on YouTube. That’s how obscure they are. They were meant to be the UK’s answer to Destiny’s Child, but they just couldn’t pull it off. I only liked them because at one time, Mariama Goodman was a member of the group, and she’d formerly been in a little known pop group I loved called Solid HarmoniE. Anyway, let’s skip to the next group.

Liberty X

Before American Idol, there was Pop Idol. And there was also Popstars (which we eventually got, only hosted by David Foster. Anyone remember Eden’s Crush?). The five contestants who were eliminated from the top 10 decided to form their own group. Of course, no one took them seriously, and dubbed them “the Flopstars”. It wasn’t until their hit “Just A Little” that they started getting the respect they deserved:

On the show, we find out that they never really broke up, but rather fizzled out. They took a break, and the public forgot about them. They didn’t have any drama to overcome as a group, but resident bad girl Michelle was about to undergo a double mastectomy weeks before the reunion, so we’re with her as she deals with that.

911

911 made a tiny little dent in the US, via a direct to video movie called Casper: A Spirited Beginning. As a prequel to the Casper movie, the soundtrack included the song “Love Sensation” by 911. I remember Fox Kids used to show the video, and I fell in love with the 30 second snippet they used to play. Across the pond, however, 911 was a huge deal in the late 90s, as a sort of successor to Take That (“Back For Good”). Their breakout hit in the UK was “Bodyshakin'”:

They had the typical drugs/depression story, but there was another angle here: lead singer Lee Brennan had been in a 10 year relationship (6 of those years married) to Lindsay Armaou – the cutest member of B*Witched. They had actually split up a year before The Big Reunion, so let’s just say that things were awk-ward! I felt really bad for Lee, ’cause he kept saying they’d mutually decided to split, but he said he’d take her back if she said that’s what she wanted. She, on the other hand, maintained that they were *just friends*. Not only had cute Lindsay grown into a gorgeous Lacey Chabert clone, but I REALLY want them to get back together. I don’t think I’ve ever shipped anyone as hard as I ship those two. They need to be together. I’m actually losing sleep over this!

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B*Witched

Well, we’ve already covered Lindsay, but she and the rest of B*Witched were known for being perky lasses with a penchant for denim. Their big hit over here was C’est La Vie:

These girls had a TON of drama, as they all felt they’d been steamrolled by lead vocalist Edele. They all wanted a shot at singing lead, but the label had decided that Edele would basically be the leader of the group. So, they’ve resented her for that for all these years. Oh, and her twin sister had a nervous breakdown.

So, those were the groups, and everyone was ready to put the past behind them and forge ahead to the future. Until, in reality show fashion, a twist was thrown into things: two weeks before the show, another group was added to the mix.

Blue

Blue were a HUGE boyband in the UK in the middle of the 00’s. Their debut was right around the time the 5ive announced their breakup, so it’s like they inherited a ready-made fan base. They were poised to hit the US, and were actually in NYC on the morning of 9/11. Once they got back home, all anyone wanted to ask them was about 9/11 and eventually member Lee Ryan issued a statement which was misconstrued into “Who gives a fuck about NYC when the whales are being killed?” Yeah, that killed their US record deal. Anyway, Blue’s big debut song was “All Rise”:

The addition of Blue to the lineup upset a lot of the other groups because Blue had technically already reunited. Last year, they got back together to compete in the Eurovision Song Contest (which I need to write about one of these days), representing England. Since then, they’d been performing gigs together, so the other groups didn’t think it was fair that their rust would be compared to Blue’s polished set. As for Blue, one member had come to terms with his bisexuality, while another had gone bankrupt trying to live the high life.

Each episode of the show gave a little background on each group, as to where they’ve been and where they are now. Then, the rest of the show focused on them getting ready for the big show. At the end of the day, it all went off without a hitch, and you can see a pseudo-pixelated version of the big concert here:

Word on the street is that there’ll be another season in 2014, and I can only hope that S Club 7 is one of the groups they try to reunite. I also think they could go after All Saints, Cleopatra, and BBMak. I guess only time will tell…

This got me thinking, though. Which US groups could use the Big Reunion treatment? In the UK, when groups are done, there’s a press conference and an announcement. “This will be our final tour, etc, etc”. Nobody quits in the US. Usually, they just fade away or go on indefinite hiatus. NKOTBSB are a great example of a group that could’ve benefited from The Big Reunion. Sure, Backstreet Boys never went anywhere, but New Kids on the Block disappeared for a good 15 years. Which pop acts would YOU like to see reunited? Let me know in the comments!

 

03rd Sep2013

Introducing…Track Star!

by Will

I like “bad” music. Of course I don’t consider it bad, but in the court of public opinion, my favorite musical acts would be considered bad. At the very least, it would be considered “guilty pleasure”. We’re talking boybands, pop starlets, 80s synth groups, etc. Still, I LOVE music – of all kinds, actually, but I always come back to the “bad” stuff. Growing up, I had quite the CD addiction which spiraled out of control once I got a burner. At last count, it’s something around 900 CDs that I haven’t even touched in years since all my music is on this very computer. Oh, did I mention that this music is completely different than what’s on those CDs? Yeah, I’ve never ripped a disc in my life. Crazy, right? Even in this age of modern technology, I find myself still buying CDs. See, I find them in thrift stores, and they’re only $2, which is a far cry from the $16-20 that I used to have to pay. Sure, I joined Columbia House and BMG like every other fiscally irresponsible teenager, but I’ve sunk thousands into the purchase of music. That’s not even an exaggeration. Where was I? Oh yeah, CDs cost almost nothing now, so I find myself buying albums for one song that I think I liked back in ’97, only to find the rest of the CD is a trainwreck. As you can imagine, these discs are starting to stack up, and they don’t really deserve a slot in The Collection. That’s when I devised Track Star – a two CDs enter, one CD leaves battle royale.

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Here’s how Track Star will work: I’m pitting two CDs against each other. They won’t necessarily be of the same genre, and may have nothing in common. Most of the time it will just depend on the luck of the draw. Two “vintage” CDs will be played through from beginning to end, as I search for any and every track that might earn the disc a spot in my permanent collection. In order for it to be somewhat of a fair fight, each disc must have AT LEAST 3 strong songs to bit against one another. Some albums have no single-worthy songs (see Justin Guarini’s debut album), and this would stop the competition before it even starts. If there aren’t 3 strong songs on a particular disc, it will be disqualified and donated to the thrift store; the remaining disc may be pitted against another CD in the future. Outside of disqualification situations, a CD will only enter competition once. The winner stays, while the loser goes back to the thrift store. Got it? If not, here it is in bullet-point format:

-Two CDs, of potentially disparate genres, are pitted against each other

-Each disc must have THREE (3) strong tracks in order to do battle, or else there will be a disqualification

-The loser will be donated to the thrift store from whence it came, while the winner will be crowned the Track Star, and it will join The Collection

What’s a “strong” track? Who knows? It could all come down to how I’m feeling that day. ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN!

To make things easier for you to play along at home, each post will be accompanied by a Spotify playlist of the albums in question. After listening along, you can tell me your thoughts in the comments. Got it?

The first challengers are coming up in a few days, so be there or be square!

30th Aug2013

West Week Ever – 8/30/13

by Will

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So, I can’t really start this post without acknowledging MLK and the March on Washington, or else The Council will come after me and my Black License won’t be renewed. In any case, this week marked the 50th anniversary of that day, with events and speakers to commemorate it. Let’s for a minute imagine if the Internet were segregated. Luckily, it’s not but that may not have been the case had it been created 50 years ago. Let’s not get into the science of “How do you segregate the Internet?” I guess you’d use the same kinda filters and shit that China uses. Anyway, if that were the case, I’d have about 3 people reading this post (I know on which side my bread is buttered!). My mom and aunts were at the original march, and I’m thankful they fought so that I didn’t have to. Now, I have the luxury of skipping the commemorative march, and blogging for white people about Power Rangers. Progress! Anyway, the anniversary ain’t winning West Week Ever ’cause there were too many agendas trying to co-opt it from its true intention: to remember the original march and what it stood for. It was NOT a platform for “What would MLK say about drones?”, but that didn’t stop folks from trying. So, the commemoration sucked, but here’s to all those folks who fought the good fight 50 years ago.

The week began with the MTV Video Music Awards, and everything that came with them. I don’t have time to talk about Miley, but I mentioned her, so that should help my SEO score for the week. No, I’m here to talk about *NSYNC. If you didn’t see the show, Justin Timberlake received the Video Vanguard Award, which is like the VMA version of a Lifetime Achievement Award. Before receiving it, however, he performed almost 20 minutes, counting backwards through his hits. Once he hit the *NSYNC era, the guys came out and helped him sing snippets of “Gone” and “Bye Bye Bye”. And then they went bye bye bye.At the end of the day, it was great to see them, and it was nice that Justin dedicated his award to them, seeing as how half of his VMAs were won while he was with the group. Did I want more of a performance from them? Of course, but I guess beggars can’t be choosers. And I still don’t know what JC’s “Baby baby” riff was all about there at the end…

Wednesday marked the 20th anniversary of the airing of “Day of the Dumpster” – the first episode of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. I’ve already documented my relationship to the Power Rangers franchise many times, so this isn’t gonna be a gushfest. If anything, I just can’t believe that it’s been 20 years. I remember watching that episode like it was yesterday, and when it was over, saying “This piece of crap won’t last.” And here we are. If you’ve never watched DotD, here’s the episode, but I warn you that it hasn’t aged well. I will say that I never put two and two together before, but Amy Jo Johnson is clearly responsible for my love of little shorts. Thank the good Lord for little shorts!

 

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Apparently, Alan Shore is gonna be Ultron in the next Avengers movie. Not bad casting. Not bad casting at all!

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On the toy front, some of you may have seen my Batman ’66 figures on Instagram. I’m not really a toy review guy, so I’m not gonna get too indepth here. I will say that Penguin is the best of the three that I got. Riddler looks enough like Riddler, but doesn’t really emote as Frank Gorshin. It was really a missed opportunity. As for Batman, his cape is ratty, like they didn’t even try to care when making it. The old Super Powers capes look like something from a Nolan movie compared to this cape. I’m hoping the Batman in the 2-pack with Robin will be better executed. One thing they don’t tell you about those collector’s cards is that the backs seem to form a Batcave diorama. This will be cool once I get all the figures, but it’s still gonna look weird since the cards aren’t taller than the figures.

I was all over the place this week! First, I pseudo-took over UnderScoopFire as I contributed to the following posts:

5 Fashions & Accessories Made Iconic by One Person

9 More Ways AMC Can Try to Trick You Into Watching Low Winter Sun

And if that wasn’t enough, they even invited me on episode #71 of their podcast to discuss Batfleck and other stuff. Listen here.

In the meantime, I’ve hooked up with a little outfit called The Nerds of Color. Basically, we’re nerds of color talking about nerdy shit. You can read my first post for them, “The Comical Life Of Will West: An Origin Tale”, here. And if you’re a nerd of color, ask me how you can join the team!

One said bye one last time, while the other taught your grandma the word “twerk”. One morphed into the public consciousness, while the other set us free at last. Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

I already said it couldn’t be the march. Twenty years, y’all! Twenty years of dubbed footage and bad acting. It’s like if you kept turning in mediocre grades and they kept promoting you. Don’t get me wrong – I love the Hell out of this franchise, but NOTHING ever made me think it would almost be old enough to drink. Power Rangers has been a juggernaut with unprecedented success. Twenty years ain’t nothing to sneeze at, so that’s why Power Rangers had the West Week Ever.

23rd Aug2013

West Week Ever – 8/23/13

by Will

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 I haven’t given a Netflix update in a bit. Once I finished binge-watching The IT Crowd, I found myself watching End of Watch. Let me explain my thought process. You see, The IT Crowd‘s Richard Ayoade was in Ben Stiller’s The Watch. Since I wanted to see more of him, I decided to give that movie a shot. Sadly, however, it’s not on Netflix Streaming. Instead, they recommended End of Watch – a movie I’d wanted to see when I initially saw the trailer, but had completely forgotten existed. So, I decided there was no time like the (then) present, so I watched the movie. It’s pretty much exactly what you think it’d be. Jake Gyllenhaal (ha! I spelled that correctly without even looking it up!) and Michael Pena star as two beat cops who find themselves on the wrong side of the Mexican cartel. Everything you think will happen happens, and the only real unique aspect of it is that it’s from the POV of cameras that Gyllenhaal’s character is using for a class he’s taking. Anna Kendrick’s a nice surprise, even though she looks 16 the whole time…

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Next up, I watched Ryan Gosling in Drive. Contrary to what I’d been led to believe, he did way more talking than I expected. I have so many questions, but it’s that kind of movie. I enjoyed it, but it almost tried too hard to be “cool”. Like it wanted that ’80s Miami Vice vibe so badly, but kinda like Peter Griffin’s opinion on The Godfather, it insists upon itself. That said, I still enjoyed it, but it may have been a tad overhyped.

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Oh! I forgot to mention that I finally watched G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and I had 3 basic thoughts on it:

1) Jaye Burnett? Its Allison!

2) Why does Firefly sound like a Klan leader?

3) What “elite” force sends EVERYONE into battle? They didn’t leave anyone back at The Pit?!

Overall, it was OK. Not really that much better than the first one, but I’m one of the few people who didn’t have much of a problem with that movie. At the end of the day, this franchise is based on a TOY LINE, so I’m pretty much amazed that they’ve done anything remotely cohesive with it. Still, I think this movie thrives on the injection of star power from The Rock and Bruce Willis. Without them, it would’ve been on even footing with the first one.

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It’s rumored that *NSYNC may reunite and perform at the MTV VMAs this Sunday. Before you start with that whole “MTV doesn’t play videos” mess, you can stop ’cause ain’t nobody got time for that! Anyway, Justin’s winning the Video Vanguard award, which is basically their Lifetime Achievement award. Yeah, for the 32 year old. With 2.5 albums. Whatever. Anyway, I should be excited by this prospect, but I’m not. I’d love for them to reunite, but not because of Justin. Sure, he’s been the holdout, but I want a reunion where they’re all on somewhat equal footing. Not to take anything away from Justin, but JC never gets enough credit, and he was the better singer. I’ll be screaming along with the rest of the fangirls, should it happen, but I ain’t happy over the circumstances.

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I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned it here, but I’ve been collecting the Hot Wheels Retro Entertainment series of vehicles. I’m not really a Hot Wheels guy, but I felt like I simply had to own these. Well, yesterday, I must’ve stumbled into TRU shortly after they opened a new case, as I was able to get what I believe is the entire next wave of vehicles. Kinda surprised Magnum got a van AND TC’s chopper, but no car? Anyway, I’ve almost got a complete set; I skipped the Muppets bus ’cause I foolishly thought it was part of a different series, and I also sold my KARR because I thought I’d be able to find another one. I thought wrong. So, those, along with the horrible American Graffiti car, are what’s keeping me from a complete collection at this point.

Links I Loved

The God of ‘SNL’ Will See You Now – The New York Times

Yikes! Brandy Performs to an Empty Stadium – Yahoo! Music

‘Getting Ready for a Car Crash’: An Interview With Triple H – Grantland

What Kick-Ass Gets Right and Wrong in the World of Real Life Superheroes – The Robot’s Pajamas

RetroCon 2013 Coverage Starts Now! – UnderScoopFire!

Interview: Joseph P. Illidge on the Intersections of Comic Books – Comicosity

Buy some stuff from Will’s World of Wonder!

One sexually harassed with the best of them, while the other needs to get those blurred lines checked out. One violated a pink swear with Uncle Sam, while the other is Batman. Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

Ben Affleck; John Goodman; Kyle Chandler; Barry Livingston; Tate Donovan; Alan Arkin; Victor Carber; Scoot McNairy, Rory Cochran

So, as I was writing this, it was revealed that Ben Affleck will be the next Batman in the Man of Steel sequel. I don’t hate it, but it does fill me with memories of Clooney. People like to bring up Daredevil, but that wasn’t a bad movie. At the time, people didn’t know what to expect. Remember, we’d only had X-Men movies and Spider-Man, and DD was a 3rd-tier Marvel character at the time. If you revisit the Daredevil movie, you’ll find it’s not as bad as you once thought. Oh well, there’ll be plenty of time for web hate about this. It was a slow news week, and this is kind of a big deal. So, for (allegedly) preparing to don the cape and cowl, Ben Affleck had the West Week Ever.

26th Jul2013

West Week Ever – 7/26/13

by Will
Who had the West Week Ever? Read on and find out!

Who had the West Week Ever? Read on and find out!

For those not “in the know”, I work in education. This week I learned two things that were pretty surprising: homework is a joke, and so is college. As it stands, there’s no correlation between homework and achievement in elementary and middle school. Even in high school, there’s just a negligible correlation. At most, it’s just busy work. In the meantime, only 31% of high school graduates who go on to college actually earn their degree. And once they get that degree, who’s to say they’ll get jobs? Food for thought, and all that jazz.

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Backstreet’s back?! Did anyone else realize there’s a new Backstreet Boys album coming out next week? Of course you didn’t, ’cause you’re “cool”. I, on the other hand, friggin’ love that group. I consider myself the biggest straight male boyband fan in the lower 48. There was a time when I would’ve had a countdown going for a new boyband album, but this one totally skipped by me. While most folks just wish they’d break up already, I kinda hope BSB stay together forever, touring as old men. I mean, their style has already transitioned to “soft pop”, so it’s not like they’re really looking all that foolish by trying to stay young. The problem, however, is that the new stuff can’t get radio play. It’s not hot enough for the pop stations, and all the soft rock stations are too busy with Maroon 5. Anyway, this new album is perfect for the Maroon 5/OneRepublic fan in your life. I acquired an advanced copy and you’ll especially be happy if you’re a Kevin fan. I guess that was one of the stipulations for his return. Here’s the first single, and title track “In A World Like This”. Spoiler alert: I’m kinda surprised to see a pop act take a stance on marriage equality, but it’s a welcome change:

Sure, it’s no “I Want It That Way”, but it grows on ya. I’ve had it on repeat for the past 2 days, and I fell in love with it.

I guess since it’s “Backstreet Week” here at WBW.com, here’s another video. I’m no Letterman fan, but I thought this was pretty funny:

While we’re on music, there’s a memory that haunts me, especially since I started listening to 60s on 6. See, when I was elementary school, I used to carpool with a teacher at my school and she’d listen to oldies. I remember one time The Supremes came on, and she asked if I liked them. Here’s what I said: “I don’t consider women with beehive hairdos to be ‘good’ music.” Who the fuck was THAT guy?! Where did that even come from? I was 9! Where did I get such a mature level of condescension. I’d be mocked out of town for the music I listen to now, but I had the gall to say something like that. The odd part is that I did like The Supremes, but I guess I thought I’d sound smart or cultured by that response. Man, I wish I could go back in time and beat myself up for that statement.

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I’m not even gonna pimp Will’s World of Wonder this week, as I had a prime opportunity to make money, and I squandered it. As most of you know, the Masters of the Universe Classics figures have been popping up at Big Lots! and the race was on to track them down. Any figure, $10 – and these things used to cost $33 on the Mattel website! Anyway, I know a thing or two about finding rare stuff, so I just went where white folks fear to tread: the ghetto. Sure enough, I found them (coincidentally, they were at a store located behind my old job). I bought up a bunch, tweeted that I’d found them, and most of them were spoken for by the time I got to work. But I didn’t even charge a markup! Nope, most of these went out at cost plus shipping. What was I thinking?! I mean, it’s not like I could scalp them, as everyone knows they’re out there, and they know they’re $10. Still, I’ve seen people trying to charge $20-30 for the figures. If they can get that, more power to them. I just didn’t have it in me. So, if nothing else, I hope my generosity gets me that much closer to Heaven…

One promised to never break our hearts, while the other wondered where our love went. One actually bought a Pontiac Aztec, while the other is the first worthwhile thing to be found in a Big Lots! Only one, however, had the West Week Ever.

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OH MY GOD!!!! WHY DIDN’T YOU PEOPLE TELL ME HOW GOOD BREAKING BAD WAS?!! I mean, I always heard great things about it, but I also heard great things about Lost, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, etc. Basically, when you travel in geek circles, EVERYTHING is the best thing since the TARDIS. I’m always finding myself late to the game when it comes to AMC shows. I discovered Mad Men around season 3, and found myself illegally binge-watching the first 2 seasons over the course of 3 days. That wasn’t my fault, though, as I didn’t have cable when it started. The same could be said for Breaking Bad, but I’ve had more than enough time to catch up. I got the first season on DVD for $3, at a yard sale that didn’t warrant a Thrift Justice post a few months back. Last Monday, I felt like watching a DVD, and since season 1 is only 7 episodes, it seemed like something I could kill a few evenings watching. Instead, I ended up watching all 7 episodes that night. Oh my God, y’all! The show is old news to most of you, but it’s even better than I’d heard. Watching Walter White go from milquetoast family man to crime boss, interspersed with Mr. Wizard-esque tutorials with Jesse about how batteries are made. Passive-aggressive Skylar, lovable asshole Hank, and Marie who always wears purple – I love every bit of it. I’m sure some of these characters will disappoint me, but I’m enjoying the ride. I signed up for Netflix just so I could keep going, and I’m almost done with season 2. By Monday, there’s a good chance I’ll be caught up (at least in Netflix terms, as they still don’t have season 5). If there are other awesome shows I should be watching (other than The Walking Dead. I’m already clinically depressed, so I don’t need a show to bring me down,), you’d better tell me about them NOW! Anyway, for being way better than I ever expected, Breaking Bad had the West Week Ever.

 

10th May2013

West Week Ever – 5/10/13

by Will
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Who, oh who could it be this week? DEAD GIVEAWAY!

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Been thinking about Downton Abbey again lately. It’s funny how you can watch the first season, and have no inclination that Tom would ever become an important character. Plus, I hate Matthew now that I know all the contract negotiation bullshit. They say season 4 will take place 6 months later so we don’t even deal with the aftermath of that final scene, but I really don’t know where the show goes now…

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I can’t decide if I like Workaholics. I’m sure I’d love it more were I 10 years young and a pothead, but I do enjoy it. That said, it’s not destination television for me. That’s how I feel about most shows on Comedy Central, like Inside Amy Schumer. I’ll watch them when they’re on, but I ain’t setting the DVR. Plus, there’s no room, ’cause of those 40 episodes of Burn Notice…Anyway, the only one I can really stand is Ders. I hate looking at Blake, and Adam has a face that’s just begging to be punched.

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Here’s an update on Operation Trade-Up, as I now have all of Bendis’s first series of New Avengers in hardcover form. I know he has his detractors, but I loved that run. I’ve just started tracking down the second run, as well as his “adjectiveless” Avengers, but all of this will get rid of another longbox.

Sponsor Update

I tried to ignore them, but the sponsor’s been demanding some exposure, so here’s some new stuff over at Will’s World of Wonder:

We’ve restocked and we’re back! Hop off that new wave, and deal with that rage by picking up a little something for yourself!

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Deluxe Megazord (2010 Reversion)
EVERYONE who’s even glimpsed Power Rangers in passing knows what this is – the original Megazord used by the Rangers.

Groovie Ghoulies Saturday Morning Collection DVD Set
Calling all monster fans! Here’s the rare, 3-disc set of Groovie Ghoulies. The set is used, but the discs are in excellent shape.

Fisher Price Construx Building Toys – Nearly 300 Piece Lot
This collection is comprised of nearly 300 (281, to be exact) pieces of Construx building toys from Fisher Price. For those who are into building toys, you’ll remember that Construx were VERY popular in the late 80s-early 90s, as they allowed kids to build more complex creations than LEGO at the time. All of these pieces are in great shape, as I weeded out anything that may have been broken.

G.I. Joe Cobra Trooper (Dollar General Exclusive)
You guys know how hard it is to find this line. Why waste gas and time when you can just buy him from me for a great price?

Batman Unlimited Dark Knight Returns Batman
If you’re a Bat fan, you’ve GOT to have this figure! Made using parts from the Masters of the Universe Classics line, we finally have a figure of Batman in his iconic form from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns.

Batman & Robin Batcave Playset
This is a Kenner Batman Batcave from the late 90s. Based on the stickers, it was released with that dreadful movie with Arnold as Mr; Freeze. Anyway, they re-released this several times, as it is scaled to work with older movie figures and the recent Justice League figures.

DC Superheroes Batman & Superman Set
This set features one of the first Four Horseman-sculpted Batman figures, and served as the precursor to the DCSH and DCUC lines. It also includes one of the first Mattel Superman figures, which was one of the first Mattel DC figures with elbow articulation. Batman has brass knuckle weapon hidden on belt buckle.

DC Superheroes S3 Sculpt Batman
One of the rarest Mattel Batman figures, and arguably one of the best, this figure is used but in excellent shape!

This Week’s Posts

Monday Musings: Underestimating Batman’s Sheer Brutality

Reboot That Bitch: The Fall Guy

Thrift Justice: YSE – Back To School

Also, I was on the No Topic Required Podcast LAST NIGHT, and it’s already up. I love living in the future! Listen to it here.

As always, be sure to check out The Friday Round Up over on The Robot’s Pajamas. Vincent really hit it out of the park with his finds, and the articles he linked.

I’m not even trying to pretend. NO ONE had a week bigger than Charles Ramsey.

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This man is being lauded as a “hero” because he aided in the rescue of a few young women who had been held captive for the past ten years. He’s just an average Joe, who doesn’t speak like a college professor, and has a very matter-of-fact delivery. So, of course the memes started up, like “We used to eat ribs, and listen to salsa music!” Through it all, he hasn’t changed who he is. He has rejected the label of “hero”, as he says he did what any human being should’ve done. He has rejected any mention of a reward, and has recommended any reward money be given to the victims. Because America loves to tear down her heroes, people started digging into his background, and found charges of domestic abuse. Despite what he had just done for these thankful women, people didn’t want to let his past go. Well, this is truly a story of redemption, and he has even said that his own domestic situation made him a new man. I think that new man appeared this week when he made that 911 call. In the words of the Backstreet Boys, “I don’t care who you are, where you’re from, or what you did…” For this, and for his actions, Charles Ramsey had the West Week Ever.

27th Mar2013

Judging Bottles By Their Labels

by Will

I’m not much of a drinker. I’m not sure if this comes as a surprise to anyone, but I’m just not much of an alcohol dude. I tend to hate the taste, I’m a lightweight, and I’ve had some pretty bad experiences. Still, there are times in life that call for alcohol, like a wedding. When we were looking for beer and wine for the wedding, I actually had to taste the stuff, which wasn’t as fun to me as it might be for you. No, my favorite part of the whole experience was discovering new brands via cool labels. Since I’m a big fan of judging books by their covers (why else do they have them?), I thought I’d share some of the spirits labels that I thought were pretty cool.

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 In a former life, this was the last thing I saw before ODing at one of Andy Warhol’s parties.

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Simple and to the point.

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Put it on a wine bottle and it’s “cute and quirky”. Michael Vick does it, and still can’t live that shit down !

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This was the name of my Color Me Badd tribute band

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Based on the name, combined with the thickiosity of that chick, this was marketed to the brothas. She so fine, you wouldn’t even hide it in a paper bag. You’d just drink it right there on the corner, not caring.

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I love how majestic and wise he looks – like something you’d see on a Vision Quest.

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Somewhere out there, I hope there’s a porn star nicknamed “The Albino Python”.

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I wonder if Atlantis has laws against drinking & swimming…

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I knew a guy who did the “Chocolate Sombrero” on a chick. That poor girl never walked again.

2012-09-09 15.49.30Is this cow farting lightning?! And they managed to harness it in CANS?! SCIENCE!

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Why do we still doubt the Yeti’s existence? You can’t incorporate if you don’t exist. Duh!

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This what it looks like when your roommate gets super powers. Don’t fake – everyone‘s roommate looks like that dude.

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If it turns out Heaven is segregated, this is what Black Heaven probably looks like. I know one person who’ll love this. #appreciation

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Of course Moses was drunk. “Hey, watch this. I SAID WATCH THIS! I’m gonna command the sea. Watch! WATCH! YOU’RE NOT WATCHING!”

2013-02-09 18.15.35

What an unappetizing name for a beverage! It reminds me of this Lisa Landry bit:

Welp, there ya go. Oh, and you know what’s funny? I didn’t actually try any of them! Actually, no – I tried the one with the fox on it. It was NOT wise! So, for now I’ll just chill with my Redd’s Apple Ale, and wonder what might’ve been.