Monday, December 31, 2012

2012’s Best Stuff

Ladies and gentlemen and Phantomaniacs around the world! It is time once again for the Phanties! The non-existent awards that I hand out via blog post at the end of every year since 200… something. Probably “9”.
2012 was a great year. I don’t even really have anything snarky to say. Lots of good entertainment, lots of good toys, lots of good times. Probably one of my favorite years so far. This is the year I became the co-host of a podcast, I was on panels at TimeGate and Dragon*Con, I became the ring announcer for Monstrosity Championship Wrestling, and I hosted my own podcast for the first time. As I write this I am just a couple of days away from possibly even recording and producing my own podcast about Masters of the Universe. By the time you read this we’ll all know if that happened or not (it did).

Friday, December 28, 2012

2012’s Worst Stuff

I’m posting this one now because I want to start next week – the first week of the new year – on a positive note. So my “Best of 2012” list will go up then.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

All of My Podcast Appearances (so far)

This is something I’ve been meaning to do for a while but kept putting off for reasons I can’t explain. And now I’ve put it off so much that it occurs to me it would actually be a really good year-end post. Well, maybe not “really good”, but sensible.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Toy Review – Toys R Us Exclusive Prometheus Trilobite versus Battle-Damaged Engineer By NECA

I thought I’d make my final toy review of 2012 a special one. So put on some Al Green or Prince or Barry White or maybe even some KMFDM, pour a glass of wine, and dim the lights. Things are about to get… weird.
I’ve watched Prometheus a few times now. I’m not any closer to understanding everything that’s going on, but I enjoy the movie and it sure is nice to look at. I love the design of every single thing from the Engineers to the spaceship to the spacesuits. Because of that I am thrilled that NECA has the license to make toys from Prometheus and that they seem determined to crank out as many as possible before interest wanes. Personally, I’m really hoping for a playset of the medical chamber thingy with an Elizabeth Shaw figure.
Toys R Us is pretty much your best source for NECA figures. The prices are surprisingly reasonable compared to other toy lines and the stores get them in a timely manner. I can usually pick up new stuff within a week of when NECA’s Twitter feed indicates they’re available. But regardless of all that TRU is going to be the only place to find today’s subject – the Trilobite versus Engineer 2-pack. It’s an Exclusive item that just hit a couple of weeks ago.
Also, the Trilobite has a penis that fits perfectly into the Engineer’s open mouth.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Note: This post ended up being pretty gross towards the end. For a Christmas post, I mean. You can just quit after the main thing if you want.
All I’ve got today is the thing I made for the Monkeys’ annual Christmas party. I got the idea from a Facebook post, but the execution is all mine. This is the first example of such a thing I’ve seen that wasn’t just Photshopped and posted online. This is the real deal, a physical Wreath of Khan:
Merry Christmas, bitches.
Note: This is the place to quit if you want to. I won’t hold it against you.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Special – S.L.U.G. Zombies Christmas Series By JAKKS Pacific

These things popped up out of nowhere.
One of my favorite resources for toy news is 16Bit.com. The guy that runs it works for or is associated with Entertainment Earth, so he has good information and gives great heads-ups about what’s coming out. It was on that site that I first saw Christmas SLUG Zombies mentioned.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Toy Review – Nicktoons Stimpson J. Cat By Jazwares

I talked yesterday about rediscovering Ren & Stimpy recently, and I intentionally left my initial exposure to the show for today.
I’m almost positive that I was there for the premiere of The Ren & Stimpy Show in 1991. I seem to recall that Nickelodeon was promoting it heavily and I think I made a point of tuning in. Something about the look of the animation really appealed to me.
Whatever the case, I was absolutely addicted. I was fifteen years old, and while I was an admittedly innocent and naïve fifteen, I was old enough to get how subversive the cartoon was. It was weird and intentionally off-putting. It both mocked and paid tribute to all of the cartoons that I had grown up watching.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Toy Review – Nicktoons Ren Höek By Jazwares

Jazwares is kind of irritating the crap out of me. They have a tendency to produce extremely flimsy or otherwise low-quality action figures like yesterday’s Space Ghost, but they keep nabbing licenses that interest me.
The fact that they have the Hanna-Barbera license is irritating. They also have the license for Regular Show, which bothers me. And Adventure Time. That’s just… ugh. The one that I didn’t care one way or the other about was their Nicktoons license. Or at least, I didn’t care until I saw the Target Exclusive Ren & Stimpy merchandise.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Toy Review – Hanna-Barbera Space Ghost By Jazwares

I love Space Ghost. Not just from the excellent Cartoon Planet or Space Ghost: Coast to Coast, but the original cartoon. I am a huge fan of Alex Toth and all of his old designs from Space Ghost to the Herculoids to his work on Super Friends. He is one of the animators that made me love the medium. Even as a kid I recognized certain qualities of animation and knew what I liked.
I bought all of the Space Ghost toys that Toynami produced years ago. Space Ghost, Brak, Zorak, Moltar, and even Space Spectre.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Special - They Might Be Giants Holiday Value Box!

A few weeks ago I received one of those digital missives informing me that if I Acted Fast I could take advantage of a Very Special offer. But this one was different. Rather than telling me about ways to make my penis larger or offering discrete sex with lonely locals, I was informed that for the bargain basement price of forty-five American dollars I could be the proud owner of one box full of They Might Be Giants merchandise.

Friday, December 14, 2012

The M.U.S.C.L.E. Tree

Side Note: I wrote this last week when I thought I would be over this crappy illness by now.
I usually try to maintain a 1,000 word minimum here on Needless Things. It’s the standard I requested of my Guest Stars last week and I adhere to it myself as best I can. Sometimes when I have a lot of particularly good photos or I have drawn stuff I don’t worry about it. Other times I feel like there’s something I just really need to comment on and want to post even though I may not have my minimum to say about it.
This time what I have is so awesome I felt like it didn’t matter how many words I got out of it because I knew everybody would be like, “Holy shit – that’s awesome.”

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Toy Review – Masters of the Universe Classics Frosta By Mattel

I’m not necessarily a fan of She-Ra and never have been. Right or wrong, it comes down to the fact that it’s girl stuff. Yes, it all fits right into the Masters of the Universe mythos and you could even argue that there is barely a noticeable difference between the He-Man and She-Ra cartoons. I don’t dislike that side of the Universe, I’m simply not inclined towards it.
That being said I am not at all opposed to these characters showing up in the Masters of the Universe Classics line. There are some truly great designs that make for awesome toys. If the Four Horsemen can nail them, they are solid additions to the MOTUC shelf. Both She-Ras are cool and Catra is one of my favorite female figures. Okay – wait – we haven’t gotten a whole lot of Princess of Power figures, have we?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Platinum Championship Wrestling 12/1/2012

I was finally able to return to Porterdale, Georgia for some Platinum Championship Wrestling action two Saturdays ago. PCW holds shows there on the first and third Saturday of every month and that night’s action included a three-way match featuring De La Vega and Supernatural facing Empire/PCW Champion Shane Marx for his title(s) and the exciting return of Johnny Danger in a match against his former Priority Males stablemate Quasi Mandisco. I wasn’t going to miss it.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Guest Post: My Twilight Confession - Beth V

Let me preface this by assuring you that I will not be discussing anything that happens in either the Twilight books or movies. Sure I read the books and saw the movies, but that isn't what this is about. I am not a Twi-hard a Twi-mom a Twi-twink or any other crazy thing with a “Twi” in front of it. I will admit that I am predisposed to like vampires (I blame Anne Rice for starting me down this road). I'm sure many ladies out there will be able to relate to why I like Twilight. And even if you can't relate maybe you guys out there will at least understand this whole Twilight thing a little better after this.



Friday, December 7, 2012

Guest Star Week: Comix with Scott!

Welcome to Guest Star Week here on Needless Things!
I put out the call to the Phantomaniacs a few weeks ago for a few guest posts. I have something I really want to work on, but it’s just going to take more time than I normally have to write. It’s a pet passion project – something which may not ever even get published – but I have to do it. I’m really excited about it and have already put it off more than I care to.
Thankfully, I had a few creative and talented people step up with some truly cool entries. I told them they could write about whatever they wanted to that wasn’t religion or politics. I didn’t even want to know what they were writing about beforehand. I said write it, send it, and I’ll post it.
Today’s post comes from Scott Stripling, who makes comic books. Scott was my best friend in high school and for a long time after. Life happened and things changed and we lost touch. We reconnected - in the casual, fakey way people do - on Facebook a couple of years ago. Scott self-publishes his comics through Shoot the Moon Studios. He also has an etsy store where you can order his stuff. I love this guy and the work that he does. He's stayed committed to his art all these years and I think that's awesome.
Also, I'm really hoping we can go see The Residents in February. 

           

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Guest Star Week: HOW TO WRITE FEMALE CHARACTERS IN TWO EASY STEPS (FROM A DUDE WHO DOES IT PRETTY WELL) by Chad J. Shonk

Welcome to Guest Star Week here on Needless Things!
I put out the call to the Phantomaniacs a few weeks ago for a few guest posts. I have something I really want to work on, but it’s just going to take more time than I normally have to write. It’s a pet passion project – something which may not ever even get published – but I have to do it. I’m really excited about it and have already put it off more than I care to.
Thankfully, I had a few creative and talented people step up with some truly cool entries. I told them they could write about whatever they wanted to that wasn’t religion or politics. I didn’t even want to know what they were writing about beforehand. I said write it, send it, and I’ll post it.
Today’s post comes from Chad J. Shonk. I know Chad from the time he beat me so badly at Star Wars trivia that I spent a whole year questioning my fandom. I will always hate Chad for that. Chad moved out to Hollyweird and wrote an amazing movie called Dakota Skye. It's on Netflix and you should all go watch it because it's really good. I also hate him for that a little bit because who really likes seeing their friends living their dreams?

Just to rub his talent in my face even more, Chad offered to write one of these Guest Posts for me. It is, of course, awesome. What a jerk. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Guest Star Week: Wrestling is a Variety Pack: How pro wrestling appeals to different people for different reasons

Welcome to Guest Star Week here on Needless Things!
I put out the call to the Phantomaniacs a few weeks ago for a few guest posts. I have something I really want to work on, but it’s just going to take more time than I normally have to write. It’s a pet passion project – something which may not ever even get published – but I have to do it. I’m really excited about it and have already put it off more than I care to.
Thankfully, I had a few creative and talented people step up with some truly cool entries. I told them they could write about whatever they wanted to that wasn’t religion or politics. I didn’t even want to know what they were writing about beforehand. I said write it, send it, and I’ll post it.
Today’s post comes from Alicia Stockton. She's a lady who knows a thing or two about wrestling. Her site - WrestlingFanGirl - features more recaps of indy wrestling than you can swing a chair at. I am very jealous of the amount of shows Alicia gets to attend. She has a unique voice and a good perspective on my favorite sport and I think you guys are going to have fun with her today.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Guest Star Week: Camping With John

Welcome to Guest Star Week here on Needless Things!
I put out the call to the Phantomaniacs a few weeks ago for a few guest posts. I have something I really want to work on, but it’s just going to take more time than I normally have to write. It’s a pet passion project – something which may not ever even get published – but I have to do it. I’m really excited about it and have already put it off more than I care to.
Thankfully, I had a few creative and talented people step up with some truly cool entries. I told them they could write about whatever they wanted to that wasn’t religion or politics. I didn’t even want to know what they were writing about beforehand. I said write it, send it, and I’ll post it.
Today’s post comes from John and the timing is pretty amazing. I was just speaking to Mrs. Troublemaker the other day about the possibility of camping. I hate camping and always have, but I know at some point my son is going to want to go. I said if we do, we’re doing it right. Tents, sleeping bags, fires. If we’re going to be freezing cold, uncomfortable, and scared of being eaten by wild animals we’re going to do it right.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Guest Star Week: The Girl Who Watches Anything or How I'm Ruining Horror Movies


Welcome to Guest Star Week here on Needless Things!
I put out the call to the Phantomaniacs a few weeks ago for a few guest posts. I have something I really want to work on, but it’s just going to take more time than I normally have to write. It’s a pet passion project – something which may not ever even get published – but I have to do it. I’m really excited about it and have already put it off more than I care to.
Thankfully, I had a few creative and talented people step up with some truly cool entries. I told them they could write about whatever they wanted to that wasn’t religion or politics. I didn’t even want to know what they were writing about beforehand. I said write it, send it, and I’ll post it.
Today’s post comes from Beth V, an old friend and roomate of mine. She used to write semi-regularly for the site I technically got my start on - MC4TR. Well, I had my MySpace blog before that, but getting the post up there and all the responses I got from it are what made Needless Things happen.I also did my first podcast there.

Beth is a sharp lady who shares more interests with me than is probably healthy for the average female. Plus she has a fairly high tolerance for the worst movie of all time, THINGS.