Friday, July 31, 2015

Needless Things Podcast 66 – Figures Toy Company Returns!

Chris DePetrillo from Figures Toy Company returns to the Needless Things Podcast!


Thursday, July 30, 2015

CD Review – Doctor Who Unbound: Sympathy for the Devil




The year is 1997, and a stranger arrives in Hong Kong, decades later than he thought he would be returning to Earth. It’s the eve of the Handover, the return of Hong Kong to China, and the Doctor finds a world that’s had to survive without him for the last few decades, and it’s a world that is not the better for it.

An advanced Chinese stealth bomber, capable of flying while completely invisible, crashes into the Hong Kong countryside, sending the Doctor in pursuit of a mystery. Along the way he finds an old friend who is desperate to forget the horrors of his own past, a disgraced version of U.N.I.T. led by a less than ethical commander, and an old enemy as trapped on Earth as the Doctor now is.

And in the midst of it all, an ancient evil is awakening…

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Devlin's Domain - Intruder




There's plenty of 80's blood and guts on this week's edition of Devlin's Domain. I'm bringing it back to some old school, classic, slasher movies this time.


Comic Book Wednesday – Previews August 2015: Man-Bat’s Ugly Thighs

If you don’t know, Previews is the catalogue that Diamond Comic Distributors use to offer the products they distribute to comic book stores around the country. This is where you can view and order (through your favorite Local Comic Book Shop) comic books, trade paperback collections, t-shirts, books, media, and toys and other collectibles from hundreds of different vendors that deal in geek-oriented merchandise. The genius part is that you actually have to pay for your copy of Previews for the privilege of ordering other things to pay for. It’s like the Ren Fest except without the horse poo smell.

So every month a new edition of Previews is sent out to comic book stores. Contained in the pages within are products that might be currently available or could be released anytime in the next year; but typically about two months away. 

Grab your copy of Previews and let's look at a few of the weird and/or wonderful items offered in this month’s edition.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Dragon Con 2015: The Progress Report

I am finally starting to get excited about Dragon Con.
It’s not Dragon Con’s fault that it’s taken so long for those fires to start burning – it’s mine. While Needless Things has been going strong and the Needless Things Podcast has become weekly and has turned into something I’m very proud of; in a weird way I sort of took 2015 off.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Toy Review – Masters of the Universe Classics Peekablue from Mattel

Good lord, that's a lousy picture. Sorry, guys.
You guys can probably guess that I wasn’t all that into a blue peacock lady.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Needless Things Podcast 65 – 2015 San Diego Comic Con Part 2 – The Movies

For the first time, Needless Things is going beyond our normal toy talk in our annual look at San Diego Comic Con! This year was so big it required two episodes – one for the toys and one for the various media happenings. Today’s Part 2 focuses on the big movie trailers and reveals that happened this year!


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Looking at this Year’s Geek Trailers from 2015’s SDCC




Just shy of a couple of weeks back there was some event out in California that at least a few of you may have heard of called San Diego Comic Con. Part of the fun of SDCC for those who can’t/don’t attend is the inevitable electronic landslide, both official and not quite all that official, of news about upcoming genre films and television shows. For those of us that didn’t make the trek west, this year had a lot of stuff coming our way, particularly where trailers were concerned. Now that we’ve given it a week to see what else might come out after SDCC turned off the lights for the year, let’s look at the trailer highlights.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Devlin's Domain - Life And Death Of A Porno Gang

Welcome back to another installment of Devlin's Domain!

Last time I reviewed a film from Spain, and we're going to stay outside of the States for this one as well. I know some people have issues with subtitles, but personally I'd rather watch a quality film with subtitles than sit through a lot of the garbage that gets churned out by the Hollywood machine. It's not really just about quality either with foreign films. There's plenty of stinkers out there. I think it's important to open up to different cultures and ideas. If you're not willing or able to travel the world, then one of the best ways to understand a culture is through their art. I know plenty of xenophobic people who don't know and don't want to know anything outside of their everyday American experience. There's more to the world than just one country. We're all on this rock together, flying through space with no clear origin or destination. The least we can do is get to know and understand each other while we're on the ride. Coincidentally that's kinda what this films about. Let's get down to it shall we?

Thank You, Tiny

I wrote this last night while trying not to get too upset in front of my co-workers:

I just learned of the passing of Gerald “Tiny” Dockery.

Tiny and I only run in the same circles once a year, so I was unaware of his passing away in April until just recently, but I am greatly saddened by the news. Those closest to Tiny have my deepest condolences.

If you don’t know, Tiny was one of the men behind the greatest wrestling shows on the planet – Dragon Con Wrestling.

Every year Tiny and AJ would sit at the commentary table, calling some of the craziest, most ridiculous, and entertaining action I’ve ever seen. DCW is so good that me and a few of my friends started calling ourselves the “DCW Hooligans” and sitting in the same spot every year. Booze would flow, matches would get wilder, and we’d get crazier. And AJ and Tiny would sit at that announce table, shaking their heads.

Every year Tiny and AJ seemed to accept us just a bit more, even getting to the point of acknowledging us and – to a certain extent – egging us on. They made us feel like a part of the show, and feeling like a part of DCW is one of the greatest feelings in the world.

Last year I had the privilege of actually being a part of the show. I was recruited to sit at the announce table in AJ’s spot and call matches with none other than Tiny himself. I had called matches before, but never an entire show. And certainly never one that I held in the same esteem that I do DCW.

Tiny was gracious and helpful while I was getting my footing. He helped me out with timing and with the wrestlers’ names (Tiny didn’t know them, either, but he had the call sheet and was more than happy to share!). Workers come from all over to participate in Dragon Con Wrestling, and I didn’t know everyone there. Once I did get comfortable, Tiny was delightful to work with. He let me go off on my tangents and had some sharp responses when appropriate. I think that by the halfway point we had a pretty good act going on.

Never mind that nobody could actually hear it…

I feel blessed and privileged to have been able to work with Gerald “Tiny” Dockery, even if only for that one night. He treated me with respect, professionalism, and courtesy, which is something that you don’t always see in the wrestling business; especially when you’re the new guy. His kindness was part of the reason I was so looking forward to announcing again this year.

Well, that and the fact that Tiny was just a hoot to work with.

I will always treasure the memory of that night and I’ll always be thankful to Tiny for taking this green-as-grass loudmouth under his wing. He did me a kindness that not many others would have.


Godspeed, brother.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Toy Review – DC Comics Super-Villains Harley Quinn from DC Collectibles

Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti’s Harley Quinn is one of the best comic books I’m reading right now. It’s clever, fast-paced, hilarious, and it presents a version of Harley that I like a lot.

Furthermore, despite the existence of the term “Batgirling”, you will never convince me that the success of this comic book – which debuted in January of 2014, almost an entire year before the Batgirl reboot – is not what drove DC to try out some lighter fare. This probably even includes the aforementioned Batgirl reboot by Cameron Stewart, Brendan Fletcher, and Babs Tarr. Harley Quinn was the first New 52 title to bring lightness and humor and it came in at #2 in sales, only topped by the unstoppable juggernaut that is Batman.

I think that maybe that raised some eyebrows at DC.

Movie Review: Ant-Man

When I first heard about Ant-Man I wasn't too excited. He was never one of my favorite characters, and I didn't see how they could do anything big enough to fit him in with everything else that's been going on in the MCU. Of course, when I heard about Paul Rudd being the lead I became much more interested. Like every other red-blooded American woman over 30 I do love Paul Rudd. I still didn't see how it was going to add to the giant epic-ness of the other movies, but at least now I was willing to see it in the theaters.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Arkham Knight – Final Thoughts

I don’t know that I’ve ever been as excited for a video game as I was for Batman: Arkham Knight.

Maybe Super Mario Bros. 3.

I used to get really excited for the WWE wrestling games, too, but that excitement was always tempered by the knowledge that the newest game was just as likely to be bogged down with new features that were not better and inexplicable restrictions on old features that were fine in the first place as it was to be an exciting and fresh improvement.

But you guys – I bought a whole new system for Arkham Knight.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Needless Things Podcast 64 – 2015 San Diego Comic Con Part 1 – The Toys

It is time once again for Needless Things’ annual look at Sand Diego Comic Con! This year was so big it required two episodes – one for the toys and one for the various media happenings. Today’s Part 1 focuses on the toys that debuted this year.


Hey, Mr. DJ…Put a Fanvid On.





TV and movie fandoms express themselves in some of the most creative ways I have ever seen.  Fanction, artwork, message board avatars, even creating recipes based on food from the shows they love.  My favorite medium, however, is a time-consuming one that can be stressful, rewarding, and requires an imagination and muse that work overtime.  The art of fan vidding.


Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Filmmaking Gospel According to Booze, Bullets & Hot Pink Jesus (& Jaysen Buterin)



I’m not sure what exactly it was that leaked into the water supply of  North Carolina a few decades back, but the documented effects of this Substance ‘X’ has been the mutation of a rather sizable number of perfectly normal people into terrifyingly talented indie film creators. So unlike the effects of the various Substance ‘X’ threats we were warned about in one 1950’s science fiction film after another, this has actually been a pretty damned good thing for us. One perfect example of why this is a good thing for us is Jaysen Buterin.

While the majority of his output in his (relatively) short career so far as a writer/director has been in short film work and with his first full-length feature only just announced, he’s managed to pack one hell of a wallop into his work so far. In the case of three of his shorts, the Hot Pink Jesus trilogy, you even have a feature’s worth of material to sit down, sit back with, and enjoy.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Devlin’s Domain – Witching and Bitching

What's up freaks, welcome to Devlin's Domain! 

I am Devlin and this is the debut of my new movie review column. I've always been a big movie geek. My first real job was as an eventual assistant manager at Blockbuster, for those who remember those. I was there for 3-4 years and was given the means to explore the lesser known and less advertised underworld of cinema. I found a lot of films that blew me away and will forever be a staple of my collection, no matter how many different formats I will eventually have to buy. But in my search for these hidden gems I also encountered piles and piles of troll dung. I've seen some of the worst films ever made and hopefully some of my reviews will spare you such an experience. I also hope to expose you to some of the best you've never heard of. I'm sure I'll eventually review some more mainstream titles as well, but there are a lot of obscure films I'd like to get to first. Since this is the first review, I will start things off on a positive note. The first movie on the list is available on Netflix, which I'm sure most of you have access to. It is called:

Witching and Bitching

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Danger on Godzilla: Godzilla vs. The Three Major Monsters!

Hey guys! Sorry it’s been so long since my last review. I meant to do this sooner, but, I changed my job, have been just overwhelmingly busy, and… hmm, you don’t look too sympathetic… okay, I lost my smile, alright? What? It worked for Shawn Michaels when he didn’t want to lose the WWF title to Bret Hart at WrestleMania 13!


Missing, one smile.


Monday, July 13, 2015

SDCC 2015 – The Non-Attendee Wrap-Up

I didn’t make it out to San Diego for SDCC and I probably never will, but thanks to the magic of the internet and a number of excellent websites that do have a presence there, I can follow along from here and supply you good people with my thoughts.

Before I get any further I want to mention those sites:

Action Figure Attack, who is providing most of the pictures for this post and has TONS more on Instagram and Facebook. For any sections with no pictures, go and check out one of these sites to see what I'm talking about. I don't want to jack anybody's stuff without permission.


Those guys all provide great pictures and without them I wouldn’t have any idea what was going on.

Action Figure Attack was nice enough to let me use some pictures, but I don’t want to abuse the offer. I’ll have some photos here and there, but I highly recommend you head over to the Action Figure Attack Facebook Page to follow along.

For all the claims that San Diego Comic Con is collapsing under its own weight and that movie studios are pulling away from it in favor of proprietary events, 2015 was a massive year full of exciting occurrences. I felt more satisfied by the movie, comic book, and toy presentations than I have in a while; possibly since I started following the goings-on out there.

While a little bit of everything goes on in San Diego, the main reason I’m here today is to talk about the toys. Also, be sure to listen to the next two episodes of the Needless Things Podcast for more coverage from myself and the Needless Things Irregulars. Also also, join the Needless Things Facebook Group to join in on the conversation yourself!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Not Your Daddy’s Poker: Card Games For the Geekdom







No one appreciates a good card game anymore.  Board games are great.  RPG campaigns are fabulous and a great way to gather friends.  But card games are just as energetic and crazy.  They can make you laugh just as hard and result in just as many friends made- and lost- as any good tabletop in the world today…and the geekdom is full of em’.  Allow me to review some of the best hidden gems out there.  Poker is for ESPN.  These card games?  Well, as Hardison says in the TV show Leverage, it’s the “Age of the geek, baby.”



Needless Things Podcast 63 – Remembering Dusty Rhodes

On June 11th, 2015, the world lost a legend – wrestling superstar Dusty Rhodes, The American Dream, passed away. In this episode of the Needless Things Podcast, tribute is paid to the incomparable son of a plumber.


Thursday, July 9, 2015

Documenting Joyful Insanity (A.K.A. The Wonderful Works of Mark Hartley)




Mad Max just finished up dominating one of the top spots on everyone’s recommended viewing lists a while back even if it didn’t quite set the box office world on fire. Lots of people were looking at the film and looking back at the originals. While I love the original films and was thinking about doing a look back at them while it was still in people’s minds, my mind sort of took a left turn and I started thinking about all the other films that came out of and shaped the film environment that gave birth to the original Mad Max.

The original Mad Max film was utterly insane, either terrifying or thrilling audiences and critics alike. For sheer brutality and insanity, it was unlike anything that most mainstream audiences and critics were used to, and even for the regular patrons of the exploitation theaters (what people now refer to as grindhouse theaters) it took it to a glorious new level. Some people at the time even talked about it like it was going to be a new wave of cinema, but it wasn’t actually new and its style of filmmaking wasn’t born in a vacuum.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Needless Things’ Guide to the 2015 San Diego Comic Con Exclusives!

Scrounged from around the internet – here’s the best list I could manage of this year’s San Diego Comic Con Exclusives!

This is pretty much just the toys, and not even all of those. I know there’s far more than what’s on this list, but trying to list comics would break my brain and we’re not all that big on tote bags and commemorative spoons and whatnot.

Movie Review - Big Game


Big Game
2014
110 Minutes Running Time
PG-13

This is a spoiler free movie review!



Jalmari Helander is probably not a name you have heard or even recognize. Just by the name I probably wouldnt either but I do know his 2010 Christmas movie very well. Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale has reached cult status in just a few years. It also has the honor of being one of the Christmas movies in my collection that is a must watch every year during the holiday season. Around October of last year, I discovered that Helander had another movie coming out entitled Big Game.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Fallout: A Look Back (and Forward)

"War. War never changes."
If you've been living under a rock, or just don't pay any attention to video game news you may not have heard about the upcoming release of Fallout 4. Other than Microsoft announcing backward compatibility for the Xbox One this was the biggest news to come out of E3 for me this year. I had planned on going to PS4 when it was time for a new console, but I'm definitely going Xbox One now. And maybe sooner than I had planned after seeing how amazing Fallout 4 looks. Personally, I'm pretty damn excited about it, and wanted to share some of that excitement with you by taking a look back at the franchise history, while filling you in on what we know about the upcoming game right now.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Movie Review – Terminator: Genisys

I wanted to be sure I watched Terminator: Genisys before I heard anything about it. I didn’t want to see a review, a Facebook comment, or even someone on Twitter saying, “OMG Mother of Cyborgs so amazeballs!” or whatever. Every once in a while I have a really bad feeling about a movie that I am hopeful for and I find it important to see it before my opinion can be tainted; positively or negatively.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Toy Review –Batman: Arkham City Clayface from DC Collectibles

Welcome to Arkham Week on Needless Things!

Every day this week I’ll be reviewing one of the new Arkham Knight figures from DC Collectibles.

At least, that was the plan until DCC delayed the release of the Arkham Knight figure, presumably because it contained some sort of spoiler for the game. If you don’t know, the identity of the Arkham Knight is the big mystery of the game. And it has been handled wonderfully. Hopefully I will have had an opportunity to finish the story by the time this posts and I’ll know whether or not my theory is correct. If you want to know who I am 100% positive the Arkham Knight is, listen to this week’s Needless Things Podcast and I’ll tell you at the end.

As a result of the delay of the Arkham Knight figure I only had four figures to review. Until I realized that I had somehow forgotten to ever review one of the largest action figures in my collection – the massive Arkham City Clayface from DC Collectibles.

Needless Things Podcast 62 – Batman: Arkham Knight

On June 23rd, 2015, Rocksteady’s final Batman game was unleashed upon the world – Batman: Arkham Knight. After a week of playing, Phantom Troublemaker gathered a group of Batmaniacs to talk about the game and the history of the franchise.


Thursday, July 2, 2015

Toy Review –Batman: Arkham Knight Batman from DC Collectibles

Welcome to Arkham Week on Needless Things!

Every day this week I’ll be reviewing one of the new Arkham Knight figures from DC Collectibles, and on Friday we’ll be posting a special episode of the Needless Things Podcast where we take a look at the Arkham video game franchise.

Today’s figure is Batman in the Batsuit from the beginning of Arkham Knight.

A Quiet Little Town Called Shadowhawk


Photos from Shadowhawk main page

Hidden just a stone’s throw away from I-95 in Smithfield, NC and located in a perfectly modern looking little area sits a tiny little western town that goes by the name of Shadowhawk. It’s a town that was the labor of love for its one time Sheriff, a veteran (and now retired) western character actor named Bill “Wild Bill” Drake.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Toy Review –Batman: Arkham Knight Scarecrow from DC Collectibles

Welcome to Arkham Week on Needless Things!

Every day this week I’ll be reviewing one of the new Arkham Knight figures from DC Collectibles, and on Friday we’ll be posting a special episode of the Needless Things Podcast where we take a look at the Arkham video game franchise.

Side Note: The Arkham Knight figure has been delayed, so I’ve only got four reviews. Word I’m getting is that it was pushed back due to the figure itself containing spoilers for the game. I think it’s somewhat prosaic that the antagonist from the oft-delayed game is, itself delayed.

I tend to start these reviews by talking about how much I love whichever of Batman’s nemeses I’m covering. Some of them, like Firefly, I don’t have a whole lot to say about. He’s fine. He sets things on fire. Whatever.

But most of these characters are ingrained into my consciousness from the many forms of media they’ve been represented in, as well as their various appearances in the comics I’ve read. For the most part I think Scarecrow has been better represented than just about anyone. Not more often, but more effectively and more in line with my concept of the character.

Comic Book Wednesday – Previews July 2015: Now 1000% Star Warsier

If you don’t know, Previews is the catalogue that Diamond Comic Distributors use to offer the products they distribute to comic book stores around the country. This is where you can view and order (through your favorite Local Comic Book Shop) comic books, trade paperback collections, t-shirts, books, media, and toys and other collectibles from hundreds of different vendors that deal in geek-oriented merchandise. The genius part is that you actually have to pay for your copy of Previews for the privilege of ordering other things to pay for. It’s like the Ren Fest except without the horse poo smell.

So every month a new edition of Previews is sent out to comic book stores. Contained in the pages within are products that might be currently available or could be released anytime in the next year; but typically about two months away. Or sometimes never. I’ve ordered lots of things that have just never come in. Without getting into the specific politics of Diamond, let me just say that they aren’t quite a monopoly and also aren’t quite the worst distributor anybody has ever dealt with in the history of the universe.

But I’m not here to discuss that. I’m here to discuss a few of the weird and/or wonderful items offered in this month’s edition.