¿Terra? No Va

“Winter Is Coming” shirts are now IN THE STORE!!! [based on this comic]

“¿Terra? No Va” translates to “Terra? Doesn’t Go.” As in, “With such a great premise Terra Nova could go SO MANY AMAZING PLACES, but choses not to.”

I have written at least four pages of stream of consciousness, black and white notebooks from Se7en-style commentary on how I would fix Terra Nova. I am going to try to arrange it into a coherent, readable, non-manifesto format and post it here for your perusal. The bottom line is Terra Nova is a FANTASTIC concept with loads of potential that the writers and producers of the show seem hell bent on completely ignoring. I have several holiday-time, family-style obligations keeping me from organizing my mad ramblings now (plus I’ve been awake for 2ish days and the voices are starting to make some really good points), so check back over the weekend and hopefully I will have completed my transformation into a great and terrible red dragon… posted my thoughts on how to fix Terra Nova.

UPDATE: I have resurrected my TUMBLR and posted my Terra Nova rant all in one fell swoop.

COMMENTERS: Who else could save Terra Nova and how would they do it? How would you save it (which specific issues would you address)? Do you think it doesn’t need saving? That is certainly an opinion one could have… IF THEY WERE A SIXER SPIE! Of course there is no actual punishment in Terra Nova for being a Sixer spie, so… carry on I guess.

[thanks to @doctoravenue, @robgonzo and @dotcomaphobe for the title to today’s comic]

It being holiday-type times and all, I thought I would mention that I have an Amazon wish list. It mostly consists of Blu-Rays right now, since I finally got a Blu-Ray player (mostly to more conveniently stream Netflix). So there’s that if you are interested. If you’d like to send a card or anything else for that matter, the mailing address is on the contact page.

Interspecies Diplomacy

If you see Predators (to which I give a solid B* on the UJWF Scale) try to image the whole thing is taking place just on the other side of Pandora. The parallels between the two films are both striking and mostly nonexistent unless you, like me, like to imagine fictional crossover subplots during movies.

If you are a fan of Predator and subscribe to the view that after the original no additional films were ever made containing Predators or their various adversaries (Aliens, Danny Glover, etc) then you should be able to enjoy this film. That is, as long as you set your sites squarely in the “I hope it’s pretty good” zone.

Here’s a quick, spoiler free breakdown:

Visuals: A – The (seemingly) limited use of CG was refreshing. It was nice to see some practical effects and some guys-in-suits that were still believable. Of course the Predadogs (Predoodles? Targs?) and spaceships were CG but the movie didn’t feel like there were 100’s of effects shots which gave it a nice, stripped down atmosphere similar to the original.

Acting: N/A – Doesn’t matter. Most of the cast do just fine but spend the entire film acting serious or scared. The rest of the time (which is the majority) they are shooting, running or dying. Topher Grace probably turns in the best performance but that isn’t saying a lot.

Story: B – The initial concept of the “game preserve planet” is very cool but the story doesn’t really progress past that point. That’s not entirely a bad thing, though. The movie just establishes it self right away then gets immediately to the “kill or be killed” reality of being stuck in the Predators’ play pen.

All in all I enjoyed it, but less for the content of the film or more for the fact that I was having an oh so rare night out with friends. Take from that what you will.


*A grade of B on the Unified Joel Watson Filmitological Scale denotes a film that should be seen in the theater by those who already have an interest in the film or it’s genre, are single, without child and having copious free time and money to burn. Those of you with children (ie limited free time/no spare cash) should wait for DVD.

Triumph Of The Usurper


hijinks-ensue-edward-shirt-160I wonder if George Lucas went into Avatar thinking, “Heh, I’ll see Jimmy Cameron’s new movie. I’m sure it’ll be good for a laugh, but we ALL know who the reigning champ of 100% wooden digital characters is.” Oh, Georgie Georgie Georgie, you fat necked lummox. If Cameron can create CG characters with realistic human emotions and less than ridiculous accents, then why can’t you? Maybe he’ll teach a class at a community college next year and you can enroll. The funny thing is that Cameron  waited nearly 12 years until technology caught up with his vision, so Avatar could look the way he saw it in his head. Lucas, on the other hand, made 2 awesome movies (and a third crappy one), then waited 20 years until technology caught up to his vision to digitally ruin them with pointless bullshit.

I’m trying to save my full on Avatar review for the next HE Podcast, but let’s just say I was thoroughly entertained and impressed. [UPDATE! The Podcast is posted and we talk about Avatar for nearly half the show.] A lot of people are complaining that the story and writing take a back seat to the visuals, but else do you expect? James Cameron already used three of the dimensions making the movie beautiful, so of course there’s only one dimension left for everything else. Seriously, if you leave that movie and find yourself complaining rather than drooling for more you might as well sign up for the junior executive program at FOX because your heart has probably been replaced by a hate-filled pineapple.

I could very easily rant for pages and pages about how visually stunning the 3D was, how lifelike the motion captured performances were or how engrossed I was in the fictional world that Jame Cameron created but I’d rather just say this: the reason I know Avatar was well deserving of my (and your) entertainment time and money was that I left the theater asking questions. What are the far reaching implications of this characters actions? How will the final outcome affect Earth? How will it affect those already in transit to the planet (since it’s a 6 year ride)? Are there other inhabited worlds? Was the end really THE END? The list goes on and on. I don’t often find my curiosity so peaked over fiction without substance. Take from that what you will, but at least ignore the hype and approach Avatar with an open (if not childlike) mind.

Cat-People Scratch Fever

Alternate Title: Blue-ty Call

Why send in all the blue-cat hybrid clones, mech warriors, and hover tanks and such when you could just hire Tony Stark to fly in and repulsor ray the shit out of the Navi and secure Pandora’s rich mineral deposits for the good ol’ US of Earth (while simultaneously securing a little alien strange for himself)? Seems like a waste of resources and a waste of an opportunity to pick up some cool offworld venereal diseases.

I am at a fanboy crossroads. I really can’t decide if I want to go through all the effort of getting a baby sitter this weekend just so I can see Jame’s Cameron’s 3 hour, 3D eye-splode Avatar, or if I just want to stay home and watch the Iron Man 2 trailer over and over and over and over and over. Both prospects are equally exciting to me.

I probably will see Avatar this weekend (and also do the Iron Man 2 thing), but since I havn’t yet feel free to post your thoughts/judgments in the comments. Future of film making or forgettable fluorescent feline frenzy?

If you ordered an Edward shirt on Dec 2nd, 3rd or 4th we are doing everything possible to get your shirt to you by 12/24. Some of them probably won’t make it in time. We’re doing our best.

Princess Anthro-Puma Saves the Enchanted Fairy Forest

hijinks-ensue-godspeed-you-fancy-bastard-book-300x300BAH! Ghastly continuity rears it’s spiteful many-horned head!

I wrote this comic intending to post it before Josh, Eli, Denise and I attended the  Avatar preview screening event, but since it is only just now being posted (4 hours after the screening) I can go into more detail than I had originally planned.

Today was “Avatar Day” which basically means a lucky few geeks across America were shown 16 minutes of finished footage from James Cameron’s Avatar in eye-blistering IMAX 3-D. EyeBLAST IMAX 3-D is so special that you have to wear giant laser space goggles to view it without having your eyeballs turn to dust.

As the comic says, I think we were all a little more pumped for Avatar BEFORE seeing the full trailer. The geeks news sites and leaked teaser images painted the picture of a movie with exotic aliens, battle-mechs, and space marines on a hostile world. The trailer essentially gave us exactly that for about 30 seconds then quickly metamorphosed into a 14 year old girl’s deviant art fantasy comic brought to life.

I think @aric said it best:

Avatar is a dolphin away from a Lisa Frank Trapper Keeper.

It even appears to closely resemble a recent children’s CG movie called Delgo. I’ve never heard of it and apparently it did horribly at the box office, but the resemblance is certainly noticeable.

Luckily the footage we saw renewed my interest.

SLIGHT SPOILERS AHEAD!!!Continue reading