Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Sea Queen

The Sea Queen
is a collective
and is both ruler
and ruled
she gazes upon
a kingdom
of herself

The Magician Plays But the Game is You

"A Dance With Dragons" George R. R. Martin

Well here it is, the newest published tome in the "A song of ice and fire" saga. Some folks have been waiting something like six years to read this. I've come to this a bit late so I didn't have to wait that long, but now after finishing it I fear how long I'll dangling on the cliff hangers at the end of this book.

Is it worth it? I think so. They series is strong, and I wouldn't care so much about the cliff hangers if I didn't care about the characters so. Still this is a frustrating book in many ways. It was orginally part of the last book published, but the tale grew so big in the telling that Mr. Martin thought it would be a good idea to split it in half. It's an awkward split and it shows. There's a distinct shift in tone about midway through the novel as the author finally finishes with "old business," and gets on with the main show.

That's not to say things aren't jumping in Westeros and beyond. Jon Snow is trying to get the Wildlings and his Night Watch to work together before the Others attack. He also has to balance his vows with grasping demanding nature of King Stannis who is clearly trying to use Jon. Meanwhile, half the world away everyone is out trying to either capture or kill dragons. Tyrion, is on the run. Arya is learning to be an assassin. And who is the poor Gollum pathetic like Reek? The novel is full of intrigues and wars.

The only problem is I want more.

Monster of the Day: Roc

Source:  The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad
Location:  The Island of the Cyclops
Threat Assessment:  5.  Hungry, vicious, gigantic two headed birds.  Definitely not something you want to meet hanging off a mountain.
Limitation:  2 bird brains are not better than one.

Today's Secret Code

"If you don't sit down then you only stand to reason."  Again:  "If you don't sit down then you only stand to reason."  Today's Colour is monolithic.  Today's Author is Post Modern Neolithic.  That is all, maho maho.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Gallery of Marston Lealbane

A prolific protrait painter
and serial killer
Marston Lealbane only painted himself
and only killed on Mondays

The Remains of the Prince of the Dawn Supposedly Comically Posed to Be Giving Himself A Moustache

It's not generally advertised but the under priests
do have a sense of humor


So last night the Cartoon Network presented a new version of the old Thundercats. Now I admit I wasn't a Thundercat fan as a kid, must have been showing them during my G.I. Joe time. But I could see it was for the time fairly quality animation. So I was curious how the new version would stack up.

I liked what I saw.

Our hero was made very likeable and might be naive at times, but he acted from his heart. His allies were great warriors. Tigra perhaps a little too good, he kept saying he should be the king. Cheetara was not only a good fighter but certainly probably grade A furry fuel. Snarf was made less annoying by at least a half. I'm not getting a good reading on wilycat and his sister yet, but they seem interesting enough.

The story is fairly dramatic and a darn good origin story. It shows how the kingdom was destroyed by betrayal and technology. Owning the Sword of Omens is cool and everything, but one magic sword isn't going to beat a couple hundred missiles sad to say. Mumm-Ra is a very disturbing villain. While his motivation (He wants the sword) is fairly villain 101, I don't recall another villain with creeping mummy bandages as a weapon. Ewwwwww.

I'll definitely watch the next episode, and so should you! HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

Monster of the Day: station

Source: Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey
Location: Heaven and Mars
Threat Assessment: 3. A giant martian genius who can split into two smaller versions. He could make death rays and stuff. He doesn't rate high on the threat assessment because he's such a sweetheart.
Limitation: Communication problems. Only english word he says is "Station."

Today's Secret Code

"Words are just wind, and Washington is a hurricane."  Again:  "Words are just wind, and Washington is a hurricane."  Today's Colour is in the wind.  Today's Author is not a blowhard.  That is all, maho maho.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Mandarian Cat Demon

The Mandarian Cat Demon
is rarely seen today
but then it was rarely seen in the days of the Mandarians

The Howling of Divas Keep Me Up In The Benight.

The Giant in Tent 33

General Jack Jakes
     as he bills himself
       is 11 feet tall
                       and has an extra face
             in his chest

Last Night's Futurama

We all have levels of silliness we are willing to take. I was amused reading a review of last night's Futurama because the author felt that the show just accelerated past that level and became way too silly. His basic complaint was, "I will accept a science that will put a head in a jar full of liquid and said heads will accept their new head fish life without much problems. I will not, however, accept that licking head juice will take you back to the time that the head originally came from. That's just too silly."

I feel for the Author I do. I remember having fits over "Waterworld," not because it was a bad movie but because Kevin was recycling his own pee into water, IN THE MIDDLE OF A FRICKING OCEAN. Still, I'll have to disagree with the author since silly or not I found last night's episode just incredibly funny. For me, funny will excuse you a lot of silly. Remember that dear readers as a bit of salt for any review of mine.

Last night, they did indeed after a presidential head party (where Jefferson was dealing hemp rope to Hermes and Grant was puking in the bushes, or should I say Bushes.) discover that head bong water has time travel potential. Being stung by one bad branch on his family tree (Fry doesn't count) Professor Farnsworth laps up some Washington juice and goes back with Fry, Leela, and Bender to colonial america. The jokes fly even faster in the past with digs for example of the "Big Dig" in Boston, and jokes about where one can find Ben Franklin. We even get to see Franklin's best invention, "The Franklinator" which is a badger on a stick.

I could use one of those.

Of course, things don't resolve as easily as they should and our group come back to a Britishfied america. Which leads to a whole slew of Brit jokes that are as obvious as being slapped with a fish, but I still found funny. Definitely give last night's episode a look.

I just found this too cute...

Monster of the Day: Cheshire Cat

Source:  Alice In Wonderland
Location:  Wonderland
Threat Assessment:  3.  The cat never DOES anything threatening.  But I consider a thinking cat that can teleport and fade in and out of reality to be a potential threat nearly worthy of a tactical nuke.  Do. Not. Trust. A. Cat.
Limitation:  It's a cat, it likes to play with you. 

Today's Secret Code

"Sometimes the holstered gun does the most damage."  Again:  "Sometimes the holstered gun does the most damage."  Today's Colour is not a secret.  Today's Author has a secret.  That is all, maho maho.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dr. Hamodann

Dr. Hamodann
is a wise sentient being
knowing much
about the things that live
just around the edges

In Zero G, the Arts Grow

13 Assassins

A real problem with many forms of government concerns relations. Oh sure you might have a mighty king, but what about his brother? In "13 Assassins" we have a mighty shogun and his less than mighty relation. Well, he's mighty in that he has a lot of troops related to him, but he's a PR nightmare waiting to happen. He's the sort that will rape a newlywed wife then kill the husband, just cause. Obviously, you can't have this moron walking around. Unfortunately, you can't just tell him to go home.

Because of this, a group of samurai come up with a plan to take him out without having to make it official. They track his movements, guide them, and eventually have him enter a small town. A town they have rigged up with death traps. It's going to be 13 samurai versus 200 warriors. I pity the warriors.

This is an incredibly visual film. It is also well thought out. It is its own film and an homage to the "Seven Samurai." Really, when you consider everything, lighting, photography, acting... well it's just incredible. It is by far the best film involving flaming bulls ever.

Monster of the Day: Herculoids

Source:  herculoids
Locations:  Outer Space
Threat Assessment:  6.  Together they are quite a crew.  A dragon that shoots energy beams.  An invincible rocky ape.  Shape shifting things.  A giant multi-legged energy pellet firing triceratop thing.  Add a couple of humans with a Tarzan fetish and you have anyone's nightmare of multi species cooperation.
Limitation:  No one here is a brainiac.

Today's Secret Code

"If you put your shoulder to the grindstone best alert the EMTs."  Again:  "If you put your shoulder to the grindstone best alert the EMTs."  Today's colour is crimson.  Today's Author is in clover.  That is all, maho maho.

What's been happening

Sorry dear readers, I have not forgotten you!  I had to go to the doctor and on the way there the bus I was in was involved in an accident.  I  am fine, but  was pretty discombobulated.  Sorry, will now continue...

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Royalty of Aves

King and Queen
Under one Wing
the Royalty of Aves
is something of a Knave
Their loache grace
has the sun loving them still

The New TSA Scanners Reveal All Sorts of Surprises


Well every other fighting game known to man has been made into a movie, so why not "Tekken?" Right, after the terrorist wars 8 corporations rule the Earth. The one that rules America is Tekken which is controled by an asian with weird hair. Typical post apocalyptic future which means cheap looking visual designs... oh future what would we do without chain link fencing? Only in movies is the architech of the future Home Depot.

So in this future our surely, lone wolf hero plies his trade of being quick on his feet. People want him to join the "Revolution," but he blows them off. Still under it all he has a heart of noble goodness (Tell me if you've heard this story before dear readers), and eventually he decides to try out to be the people's hero in yearly manic fisticuff jamboree.

Right so the people's hero, and a bunch of other bruisers with bad hair and attitude now ply for honor and glory not seen since wrestlemania infinity. Ah but the son of the asian with the bad hair has other plans. Not only does he want to take over the company from dear ol' daddy, but he wants to turn this ass stomping party to eleven by making it to the death. The People's Hero is not amused. He is less amused to discover he is the son of this wankturd. Daddy issues are about to be ask kicked to kingdom come and we are all in it for the ride.

Ok, the story is bad, the acting is cardboard, the hair stands out though. The martial arts though aren't bad. Just enough of the real to keep it from becoming like "Double Dragon 2." And really, it was fairly painless fun which really is the best anyone can hope for in an exercise like this. Enjoy!

Breaking Bad

Nothing really happens this episode and that's a good thing.  After all the intensity of season opener there's a need for everyone to breath for a moment.  To learn how to cope with some pretty horrible thing.  Jesse copes by complete utter denial.  He goes back to drugs and thuggery and has a week long party.  Pausing only to work and to send some guilt money to the rehab girl he had tried to enlist as a drug seller.

Our man Walt is coping by being trying to figure out how to kill Gus.  His denial is that it is self defense.  Walt, self defense is not marching over to the man's house with a concealed gun.  Specially when it was made clear to him that Gus wants nothing more to do with him except his ability to cook drugs.  Still, Walt can't take this.  As Mike said, "Learn to take 'yes' for an answer."

Poor Hank, he's trying.  He's working hard in rehab.  But he hates feeling weak and his wife is taking the brunt of Hank's self hate.  It's getting pretty heated there.  It doesn't help that Hank has gotten a weird need to collect minerals.  Maybe the idea that rocks don't change appeals to him.  Whatever, when your husband seems to care more about a rock than you, it's a low tide mark in the old relationship.  Specially, when you are also at the time in charge bed pan cleanings.

Monster of the Day: Star Wars Trash Monster

Source:  Star Wars
Location:  Trash systems
Threat Assessment:  3.  Might be higher but first off what are you doing in a trash compartment?  Didn't your momma raise you better?  Secondly, since a lot of  trash compartments are designed to crush the trash, the trash monster is the least of your worries.  Still being sucked down into garbage by an unseen thing is not pleasant.
Limitations:  fairly timid in actual fact.

Today's Secret Code

"You can carry a lighter, but you will weigh the same."  Again:  You can carry a lighter, but you will weigh the same."  Today's Colour is bright and cheerful.  Today's Author is in the good fight.  That is all, maho maho.

Saturday, July 23, 2011


The Brinyya are actually quite friendly
still contact is limited because they require
a flourine atmosphere

George Romero's Dead Time Stories

George Romero has become the Stan Lee of zombies. This is not a good thing. Basically, we've gone beyond the victory lap and are now on permanent career lifesupport. Like Stan Lee, George Romero was a game changer early in his career. Now, like Stan Lee, he spends most of his time telling stories to fan boys of the "Good Ol' Days."

Every now and then George puts out a new movie, to keep a relevance that he no longer has. Which brings us to Dead Time Stories. Here he's doing sort of a kooky crypt keeper type host job, except he sounds exactly like Stan Lee. I kept expecting him to say "Excelsisor!"

Now George here has done anthologies in the past.  He did "Creepshow," still one of my favorite films.  He also did "Tales From the Darkside," which was not so successful.  Well now he has officially bottomed out.  These are just horrible stories.  No, worse than horrible... boring.  Boring, boring, boring.  Really just avoid this like a plague. 

Good night, George.

Monster of the Day: M. Bison

Source: Street Fighter
Location: Shadaloo
Threat Assessment: 7. While not technically a monster, he gets called one enough. A master of the martial arts and master of a private army he is armed with devices that allow him to project lightning and fly.
Limitation: Only his massive ego

Today's Secret Code

"Is the grass green with envy or the sky blue with sadness?"  Again:  "Is the grass green with envy or the sky blue with sadness?"  Today's Colour has emotional content.  Today's Author is not looking at the finger and sees all the heavenly glory.  That is all, maho maho.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Galgon Seer

The Galgons are a gentle tribe
they avoid the metal people
and the plastic people
and the people just plain cat barking mad
the Seers help them navigate
a path of tranquility
in an rowdy world

Rutabaga Child

Rutabaga Child
on a summer day
happy and mild
just wants some play


Well this is the best episode so far in this season of Futurama. I like when they center on Leela cause she's generally the voice of reason for the crew so when she's thrown into the insanity head first there is even more comic tension. The episode starts innocently as Leela wants to tell the orphans a good story. Trouble is Leela has absolutely no imagination. Not being able to find a quiet place to write she takes the space ship to someplace quiet. When she comes back she has a story that not only the orphans like, but also a TV executive who decides to make it into a show.

While she doesn't go absolutely Bender about it, it becomes clear as the show becomes a hit that it has all gone to her head. One doesn't have to be Sherlock to smell something not right with this and in true Futurama fashion everything goes topsy turvy. The really nice bit is that what happens to Leela is both perfectly in character and perfectly funny. Besides a good strong story, this episode has some nice digs on children TV. I don't know about you good readers, but I'd watch "Dora the Destroyer."

Monster of the Day: Mini Frankensteins

Source:  Bride of Frankenstein
Location:  Bottles
Threat Assessment:  1.  Little tiny human like creatures.  I suppose if they got out they could cause some trouble.
Limitation:  Tiny.  Not too bright.

Today's Secret Code

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies."  Again:  "A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies."  Today's Colour is between the lines.  Today's Author feels just fine.  That is all, Maho maho happily ever after.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Bomb Elementals

Bomb Elementals
are rather unstable
naturally schizophrenic
and moody

When Bunnies attack

Sarac of the Maze

In the maze
Sarac is fastest runner
and quickest to make first blood
she has never been a fan favorite though

The Aetherial Diva Sings in the Blue

Monster of the Day: Giant Frankenstein

Source:  Frankenstein Conquers the World
Location:  Japan
Threat Assessment:  6.  Superstrong, and unkillable, and now giant sized.  Thank you Japan.
Limitations:  Still a nice monster after all that.

Today's Secret Code

"Always wait an hour after eating before you time travel."  Again:  "Always wait an hour after eating before you time travel."  Today's Colour is a Doppler shade.  Today's Author is looking for an arcadian glade.  That is all, maho maho.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Oh, I see.... You Want to Cut WHAT Off?

Devil Girls

Devil Girls are not to be messed with
they know 108 hexes
they know 5 hexes alone
that can turn men into
nameless things
nameless dreams
and just

Hobo With A Shotgun

A lot of folks are leery of violence in the media. Studies do seem to indicate that it might not be the best thing for you. But then neither is fine wine, or a really good ham. Sometimes you just have to weigh the negatives and then say "What the hell." Of course there is always overdoing a thing. It's one thing to have a glass of pinot, it's another thing to wear a box of wine on your head, before it gets emptied. Still, if you are able to handle it, for absolute overkill in violence for the year 2011 I give you dear readers "Hobo with a shotgun."

Starring Rutger Haur as the Hobo, the movie does not have the plot line of a Russian novel. Our hobo drops into a town. All he wants to do is scratch enough money for a lawn mower so he can make a little more money. The American dream really. But the town is full of low lifes, no lower lifes, no no the lowest lifes you can think of. These are the guys that love taking off heads in the middle of the street because they know they are invulnerable. Our Hobo saves a hooker from their mitts and gets beaten up and stabbed by both the cops and the thugs for his trouble. Finally, fed up with it all he takes the money he has and buys a shot gun and he is NOT shy in using it. Anyone that is even a bit scummy winds up with a shotgun up against their head.

The people have a new hero!

But it can't last forever, the bad guys decide that the only way to take care of the Hobo is to become even more freaky evil and scare the town so badly that the town will hunt the Hobo down. A few choice events like taking a flamethrower to a school bus full of kids and their plan starts to work. It all ends in epic carnage as the Hobo reloads.

Really folks, trust me here. This is violence on violence with a dollop of violence on top. It is not for the everybody, and probably shouldn't be for anyone. After that being said though, it is stylish, it moves like greased lightning, and it has a sick sense of humor. Accept no other armed homeless person!

Monster of the Day: Gossamir

Source:  Loony Tunes
Location:  Wherever needed
Threat Assessment:  2.  He's big and scary looking.  But really he doesn't even measure up to the menance of a Yosemite Sam.  A sweetie at heart.
Limitations:  Easily conned.

Today's Secret Code

"Have your ducks in a row, but your geese serpentine."  Again:  "Have your ducks in a row, but your geese serpentine."  Today's Colour is a water color.  Today's Author feels like an oil.  That is all, maho maho.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Mud Dwarfs

Much more common in the days of Babylon
Mud Dwarfs made bricks and pots
and charms for love and fertility
they were friends with both Earth and Rivers
and could hide in either


Well last night's Alphas went totally X men. I wasn't surprised. You can't tell a story like that of Alphas where you have two very different groups of people in conflict. Our "Magneto" here is an alpha that the good doctored tried to help in the past and failed. His power was basically a form of super probablity perception. In effect, like Big Blue, he saw the world like a chess board twenty moves ahead of everyone else. His problem was he was incapable of mentally accepting the idea that the rest of us couldn't see the same chess board. This led to paranoia and that led to him becoming dangerous and being sent to the place where "dangerous alphas" are sent to.

Well, in this episode he escapes and stalks his old doctor because he's convince that the doctor in part of the new plans occurring at his facility. "It's not group therapy and ping pong anymore," he darkly jokes. When he becomes convinced that doctor isn't a part of it, he changes his goals and rather wants to radicalize the doctor over what is happen. He warns there is a war that will happen between alphas and normals unless the doctor "takes over the chessboard."

The action of the episode wasn't that great apart from some interesting escapes of our "villain." The team didn't get to strut much either. We did get a good look at the forces that drive the doctor and I think that ground work is going to be important for future episodes. It's also good we get a glimpse that the government isn't just letting alphas running around being super.

Monster of the Day: Audrey II

Source: Little Shop Of Horrors
Location: Skidrow
Threat Potential: 5. A mobile carnvorious plant. Audrey II was initially very weak and needed Seymour to feed and take care of him. He could be very persausive and was a master manipulator. As he grew stronger he could easily take care of himself and planned to spread his seed literally across the earth.
Limitations: Needs lots of food, hates electroshock.

Today's Secret Code

"Speak softly and carry a tactical nuke."  Again:  "Speak softly and carry a tactical nuke."  Today's Colour goes boom.  Today's Author needs more room.  That is all, maho maho.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Blue Trolls and their habits

Blue Trolls tend to be more helpful
than their green brothers
They are fond of prickles
steamed milk
and ale that's been left opened for a week

The Feral Man of Manob

In the forests of Manob
the Feral Men
and moon struck

Breaking Bad is Back!

Well, it took them long enough. Now I have a reason to stay up late on Sunday nights. Judging from last night episode it should be another stellar season of dark suspense and humor. My cup of poison.

Our heroes wind up in their lab waiting for their boss Gus. As a counterpoint to their plan to kill Gale to save Walter, Gus' thug Victor starts cooking. This annoys Walter more than anything and he can't help but comment on how sloppy Victor is. When Gus comes the begging starts. It's not a spoiler to say someone ends up dead. What makes it a great scene is how the suspense is milked to its upmost as our very clean Gus changes into a hazmat suit for a bit of wet work. In the end, a message was delivered to Walt that will form the kernal of the season.

What Gus said was, "Get back to work."

What Gus meant was, "I may not be able to kill you, but I can make you wish for death."

Can't wait to see what happens!!

Monster of the Week: Giant Scorpion

Source: Black Scorpion
Location: Mexico
Threat Assessment: 5. Longer than a truck, armored plated, and armed with stinger and claws. Surprisingly quick, and capable of burrowing. A nasty combination.
Limitations: Animal intelligence.

These scorpions might be even more dangerous

Today's Secret Code

"Never burn the midnight oil with a flamethrower."  Again:  "Never burn the midnight oil with a flamethrower."  Today's Colour is a smokey hue.  Today's Author to his ownself is true.  That is all, maho maho.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Shade of Merrow

The Shade of Merrow
of exhales pale fumes of dreams
It is as far as her kindness
can go

Our Lady of Chimeras

Found in tent 22
Our Lady of Chimeras
is a Jenny Hanover
A creation of monkeys
and sheep
sewn together
It never existed
Never walked
nor loved
nor dream
yet in her presence
strange miracles have happened
and now she has her own followers

A Single Spirit Stands As Sentinel


Ok ok, dear readers wrap your head around this weirdness. A few years back there was a Spanish film called "REC" which was in the genre of 'documentary horror.' Well, it was actually pretty good so they made a reboot for the american market. That reboot was called "Quarantine," and was amazingly a near shot by shot remake of "REC." Now there is both a "Quarantine 2" and a "REC2," but oddly the sequels diverge by an incredible amount. I've not seen "Quarantine 2," but from the trailers I gather it is set at an airport.

"REC2," however stays in the creepy apartment building of the first film. Now a special squad is sent in to recover a mysterious macguffin. They know that they are dealing with people infected by a mutated form of rabies.
Or do they? I won't give all the twists to the new film but I will say that the true cause of the madness that infects the apartment takes a big left turn from straight science and straight into the twilight zone.

The film is deeply exciting and disturbing. It has the good property that anyone can die at any time. Some of the deaths are pretty outrageous, such as death by bottle rocket to the mouth. There's not a lot of character in this film but there is lots, oodles of style, so overall it works fairly well.

Monster of the Day: Abominable Snowman

Source: Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer
Location: near the north pole
Threat Assessment: 4. Very Strong, powerful, and really knows how to keep a grudge.
Limitation: Bad Dentistry, can be confused.

Today's Secret Code

"We are playing a game: you don't tell me the rules, and I don't tell you who won."  Again:  "We are playing a game: you don't tell me the rules, and I don't tell you who won."  Today's Colour is a clue.  Today's Author rolls the dice.  Baby needs a new pair of shoes.  That is all, maho maho.

"Cards for Sorrow, Cards for Pain."

Saturday, July 16, 2011

His Father's Eyes

They fed her full of lies
but the truth was easy to see
though she wanted to flee
she knew he had his father's eyes

Tell Me Stranger

Tell me stranger...
am I still
or do I dream
I still bloom?
Will you touch me
and tell me my skin is still warm
and not marble cold

The Hand Maiden Will Attend To You Now

sad sad robot

Monster of the Day: Koala People

Source: Ugly Americans
Location: Austrailia/New York
Threat Assessment: -1. Too cute by half they are completely helpless.
Limitations: And not too smart either

Today's Secret Code

"Never trust a smiling cook, a grinning cat, or a shark with the blues."  Again:  "Never trust a smiling cook, a grinning cat, or a shark with the blues."  Today's Colour is hidden under the flakey crust.  Today's Author trusts you.  That is all, maho maho.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Disferrous the Elemental of Molten Iron

Disferrous is a soldier
born and forged
He serves the Elemental Lords
with joy
and fire


There is all eternity to rage
all the world to burn
for now
it is enough
to wait

She Called A Name and Was Enlightened


Well this isn't quite like "Paranormal Activity" even though it's got some of the same names behind it.  This is a good thing, as the documentary style of horror movie is mostly played out.  This one is a straight up make you jump film.  Music will swell up unexpectedly.  Faces will suddenly loom from behind main characters.  Hands will come in from the edges of the film to grab our poor unsuspecting victims.  All of which is designed to make us catch our breath and jump, or jump and catch our breath.

The plot is pretty much in the trailer.  Family is worried about being in a haunted house, but it turns out it is their son that is being "haunted."  There is the concerned father and mother, and the brave researchers of parapsychology on one side.  On the other is a host of ghostly beings that don't seem to have anything linking them.  From ghostly kids to frankly terrifying demons.  They all seem to want the boy for some reason. 

Definitely well worth a watch if you need a good scary film!


"Embassytown" by China Mieville is another of his fantastic explorations of reality. In this case involving language and how it relates to our ability to think. Or should I say Language, as it is Language with the capital "L" that is the core of the novel.

The Language in question is spoken by the Hosts an extremely alien race that lives in a "backwater" area of the known universe. The Language has many odd features, it can only be spoken by living beings and not written down. One cannot lie when speaking the Language. Even things like a simile have to be created in reality to have meaning in Language.

Humans have a difficult time dealing with the Hosts. Just the physical requirements of speaking the Language requires years of training and surgery. The Ambassadors after all that are almost as alien as the Hosts. Embassytown rose to cradle the Ambassadors, the Hosts, and humans as best as one can. It's certainly a hot house environment. Humans cannot even leave it without life support, and most don't want to. The Host's city is disturbingly biological to humanity.

Avice, our narrator, grew up in Embassytown and managed to get away. She came back but now doesn't really fit into any clique. Both an insider and an outsider she is a perfect witness to the events that nearly destroy everything. It all involves a diplomatic mistake, the Host trying to learn how to lie, and how these seemingly trivial things snow ball into a linguistical Armageddon.

This is not an easy novel to read.  But it has some pretty heady ideas, and is a fascinating setting.  It's well worth a read if you are ready to invest some time into it.

Monster of the Day: Quarantine victims

Source: Quarantine
Location: Apartment
Threat Assessment: 7. Highly infective disease afflicts an apartment. Victims have all the signs of rabies. Disease works lightning fast.
Limitation: Victims are vicious but nearly mindless.

Today's Secret Code

"As the scientist on vacation posted, 'Gone Fission.'"  Again:  "As the scientist on vacation posted, 'Gone Fission.'"  Today's Colours are hot.  Today's Author is cool  Daddy oooooooooo-mega.  That is all, maho maho.

"There's a fish in the PERCULATOR!"

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

In the Great Woods

In the Great Woods..
In the sheltering cold..
In the craddling dark...
Old hands rise again...
baring the druid's toll...
to rule... the Great Woods.

Syfy on Mondays

I'm actually fairly happy. There are still some folks with braincells on the television series side of the Syfy family. When Syfy is not making horrid films, or doing orrid docushows, or doing.. shudder.. pro wrestling, they can put together a nice, easy, breezy hour of TV fun.

First the return of Eureka. Nothing much new here at least at first. Our gang have created a problem and now must work together to fix things. The problem in question is sending up a spacecraft using 1960 technology and FTL drive. What can go wrong? Well, in this case how about a fender bender with the International Space Station? Luckily all works out well in the end, except it looks like outside forces are gathering against our brainy little town.

After that we have Warehouse 13. Another returning show and another fun episode. Right now there's a bit of a personal flux and we have a new agent in the form of Agent Jinx who can tell if anyone is lying to him. While useful, our regulars are pining for the old lineup. It's all a bit of fun and it's great seeing the Warehouse represented again for a new set of eyes.

The big question tonight was whether "Alphas" was going to fail ala "Heroes" or if it would have some potential. Judging from the pilot I would say ... definitely has potential.

THe Alphas are sort of low powered super heroes. We don't get Superman, but we do get a guy that can get as strong as a bull if given a moment to pump himself up. We also have someone who has some mind control powers, a girl who can sharpen her senses, and a rather autistic kid who can literally tune in to the electromagnetic spectruum. One nice thing is we aren't given a big origin story here. We are basically introduced to them as an already working unit who are on a case. We can already see how they annoy each other and compliment each other. I like how they definitely have social problems but not grand dramatic problems.

Overall, I'm definitely going to watch this one for a bit at least.

Adventure Time is Back

Well it wasn't a classic episode, but last night's "Adventure Time" was fun. Jake had just made a giant burrito with everything and practically treats it as a child. Burrito love though in interupted by the evil army of cuteness. These little cuties want to bath in the blood of their enemies, but can't get it together to the point of blowing themselves all apart. Jake and Finn find themselves doing the one thing they never thought they'd ever do, losing on purpose! Like I said, not top of the line but still lots of fun. It will definitely help make my Mondays.

Monster of the Day: Otherworld Sand Worms

Source: Beetlejuice
Location: the Afterlife
Threat Assessment: Gigantic Worms that can eat dead souls. I'll give it a 5.
Limitations: Otnay ootay ightbray.

Today's Secret Code

"I don't have a dog in the fight, but I often have my cat in the tree."  Again:  "I don't have a dog in the fight, but I often have my cat in the tree."  Today's Colour keeps itself very clean.  Today's Author wishes he was really keen.  That is all, maho maho.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Venus Stargate

Rising from the Water Near the Abadonned Pier

In Her Skin

"In Her Skin" is a dark, dark film. A pretty young girl goes missing and the family tries to find her despite the indifference of the police. Meanwhile, a very troubled young lady holds the needed pieces to solve the mystery. This is a dark, well acted tale.

Pepper Penwell and the Land Creature of Monster Lake

Oh this is just delightful. This is a funny little graphic novel that is mostly a fun take on the "Nancy Drew" type detective story. Put it in a world where magic is acknowledged, and add some fun characters and dialogue and you have a peppy story about Pepper. Pepper is so great at solving mysteries that she's kicked out of her private school for making it look like a den of inequity.

Travelling with her brother, who had accidently turned himself into a bird, they go out to the country. But it's not a vacation romp. Nope there's a girl mysteriously missing and rumors of a giant monster roaming around the lake. Who's to blame? The crazy corporate druid? The Semi Mad Scientist with the smoking hot son that Pepper would love to date? Or could it be someone else?

Really the mystery doesn't matter so much as the little bits. I love that Pepper keeps track of how often she's knocked out or drugged. I love the little details about past cases ("See they poisoned this non poisonous snake!"). The art work is spot on, and is detailed yet breezy. Any world with prize winning Norwegian Screaming Roses is worth the time to investigate I say. Find this and give her a good reading!

Monster of the Day: Borg

Source: Star Trek the Next Generation
Location: All over the universe
Threat Assessment: 8. They are a hive mind that will take victims and turn them into more Borg. Borg are strong, nearly invulnerable and armed with energy weapons. Their square ships are also nearly invulnerable.
Limitation: They lack style. They tend to do things on their own time, sometimes stopping a battle to repair or do other functions giving their foes a needed breather.

Today's Secret Code

"This is not a code."  Again:  "This is a code."  Today's Colour is mysterious.  Today's Author is Justified and Ancient.  That is all, be seeing you.  Maho maho.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

She Was A Very Bad Paper Girl

She was a Very Bad Paper Girl
and paper can cut
deeper than
you think

Your Cell Awaits

They Feed

It sucks.

It comes by its suckiness honestly at least. Obviously made for a buck ninety five by people who probably spent half of that budget on alcohol. We have a charmless, clueless, meandering film of disposable people meandering around a forest getting disposed of by giant worms. There are a bunch of young nothings there supposedly looking for a lost plane, and there are cops looking for poachers. There are also giant worms looking for a meal. Everyone mixes together and for the most part the worms win. The end.

The special effects for the worms are as bad as you think they are. Half the time they look like brown turds with plush teeth. I will say they somehow get them to have this vibrating look though which gives them a surprising amount of life. Shame they couldn't extend that to the whole of it.

Green Lantern: Emerald Knights

Once again, DC has done better by its property with a cheap cartoon than with a hundred million dollars worth of special effects. "Green Lantern: Emerald Knights" is a collection of tales about the other green lanterns that make up the green lantern corp. Luckily, the writers were smart enough to for the most part avoid the whole "rainbow of rings" storyline of the recent past. Instead we get a fairly straight forward science fiction/super hero set of tales.

The first is a story of the origin of the corp. The second is about Kilowagg who is the tough yet kind at heart drill sergeant of the corps. The third is story of having to choose between family loyalty and loyalty to the corp. There is an amusing little story about the biggest lantern named Mongo. The final story concerns Abin Sur who gave the lantern to Earthman Hal Jordan, and Sinistro who trains Hal and will later betray the entire corp by taking the yellow ring. All the stories are wrapped around the lanterns having to fight Krona who created the dreaded anti matter universe and now seeks to destroy all the lanterns.

The animation is brisk is fun. Hall Jordan is being voiced by Nathan Fillion and that is just shiny if you ask me. the whole affair is great fun and definitely helps non-lantern fans get an idea of what the whole corp is all about. Definitely worth a watch.

Monster of the Day: The Three Storms

Source: Big Trouble In Little China
Location: China Town
Threat Assessment: 5. Nasty mid bosses with the respective powers of rain, wind, and lightning. Masters of the martial arts, they are not to be taken lightly.
Limitation: Under the control of Lo Pan. Wind can take his powers beyond his own control.

Today's Secret Code

"As Jack Burton said, 'It's all in the reflexes.'"  Again:  "As Jack Burton said, 'It's all in the reflexes.'"  Today's Colour are furein type colours.  Today's Author has a six demon bag.  That is all, maho maho.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Lady Leona

Lady Leona
holds the red ebony seat
in the Poesy Court
Her words are regarded as wise
if sometimes passionate
And she has the ear of the King of the East
and the Queen of Shallows

The Burrzzurb

A three dimensional object
casts a two dimensional shadow
the Burrzzurb are five dimensional beings
We can only perceive their four dimensional shadows

The Macri Guard

Now mostly serving as a ceremonial guard
The Macri Guard still wear the old armor
full of colour in meaning
to those that can see
the Macri wear their history
as their defense

Pet Shop of Horror

This is really a silly idea, but its present in such Twilight Zone intensity that it sort of works. In China Town Count D runs a most odd pet store. Oh it has the usual bundles of joys, but in the back of the shop are the special pets. Things that can grant your heart's desires. Trouble is that each pet comes with strings attached and a contract that says the store takes no responsiblity if the owner breaks a condition of ownership.

They always do.

The owner is a rather odd duck. His name is Count D, and he's an emo goth type with a flying bat bunny and a sweet tooth. He drives one cop right out of his mind cause he's SURE that he's some sort of super criminal rather than just the humble seller of dreams that might come true.

The Expanding Sky

We learn more every day
The universe expands more every day
The vectors are clear
the Dispora has begun
before we even knew it existed
We will meet the aliens
because we will become the aliens
we will meet the gods
because we will become the gods
...and devils
We don't seem fated for sainthood
but we will love
and grow
and die
among the expanding sky

Monster of the Day: Neuman Eating Dinosaurs

Source: Jurassic Park
Location: Fabled South American Island
Threat Assessment: 3. Awww they are so cute. And Curious. Oh suddenly a frill rises up. Abort! Abort! Blinding poison spit!!!! No more Neuman.
Limitations: Lives on an island.

Today's Secret Code

"Can there really be a symbol for nothing, because if the symbol represents nothing then it means something."  Again:  "Can there really be a symbol for nothing, because if the symbol represts nothing then it means something."  Today's Colour is nameless.   Today's Author isn't exactly blameless.  That is all, maho maho.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Colonel Mudlark

Mudlarks are not respected
but are respectable soldiers of fortune
Colonels are known as canny leaders
and care about their men

Malicent Trivia the Goddess of the Loophole

Worshiped by an ancient race of lawyers
Malicent Trivia is the last word of any contract
Always remember her favor is fickle
and another type of loophole is a noose

Grabbing Hold of Forge of Creation

Futurama/Ugly Americans

This week's Futurama dealt with jokes of a certain vintage. That is, they were old old jokes. I mean first they were riffing on "Police Academy" which is hardly freshness, and then they went over to "Minority Report." It had some nice bits, but for a story involving prophecy it was a bit too linear. Over all a middling effort.

Ugly Americans though went for some pretty twisted territory. Callie, the beautiful deamon on staff, is being bugged by her father to continue into the marriage he arranged for her. By "bugged" I mean like having people fall from the sky and their bodies forming her name on the street below. Since she doesn't want to marry Duane who's becoming more of a wuss every episode she shacks up Mark. Luckily, her father and mother get together and have a new little baby sister. Well not so little. She's growing up a year a day, and she's going to take over the wedding contract. Mark gets to be daddy, and Callie gets to try to keep everybody safe from her even more evil sister. Over all it was a fun episode. There was almost something akin to character growth. Not much, but enough to make more than just a joke fest.

Monster of the Day: HIlls Have Eyes Mutants

Source:  The Hills Have Eyes
Location:  The desert, where they tested nuclear weapons
Threat Assessment:  6.  Though they didn't hit their stride til "The Hills Have Eyes 2."  There they took out at least ten soldiers without use of guns.  Though strong and armed with sharp pointy things, their main weapon is knowledge of the terrain.  They have been known to use mine shafts as ambush points.
Limitation:  Guns and Mirrors

Today's Secret Code

"Kenny said it best, 'Never count your winnings while sitting at the table.'"  Again:  "Kenny said it best, 'Never count your winnings while sitting at the table.'"  Today's Colours are red, black and green.  Today's Author has a skill rarely seen.  That is all, maho maho.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Iconica

The Iconica
was created by Russian Monks
who had knowledge of
Strange Angels
The Iconica
can create
strange miracles
if faith is strong

Mr. Brillman's Cat

Mr. Brillman's Cat
name Thrubble
had the rare rainbow eyes
that can hypnotize

The Hit List

It just isn't our hero's day. He lost his promotion. His ideas have been stolen. The loan shark he owes money to has beaten an IOU on his face. Oh, and his wife is sleeping with his best friend. A good day to find a bad bar and get very badly drunk. The type of drunk that spills his trouble to the nearest fellow. Nearest fellow happens to be an assassin. He asks our hero to list the people who he wants dead with the person he most wants dead saved for last. Thinking it's a lark our hero does so, with wifey at the top of the charts.

The next day the killings start. Our hero gets bonus points for trying to get the police involved, though admittedly the cops are a little suspicious of 'A hitman walked into a bar.' Meanwhile, the hitman plays various mind games with our hero as he works his way down the list.

This is a good little thriller. Cuba Gooding Jr. sells it with a world weary look and a sick little cough. We believe his assassin is having his own special bad day and that he's not just some insane psycho. There's a point here, which keeps it from being psycho of the week. As I said a nice little thriller.

Monster of the Day: The Phantom of the Paradise

Source: The Phantom of the Paradise
Location: Paradise Theater
Threat Assessment: 3. If you aren't a scum sucking music thief you will be let alone. IF you are a scum sucking music thief then the Phantom will sneak up on you and use his madness inspired strength to finish you.
Limiation: Still a dork at heart, also in love with Phoenix. Finally, thanks to signing a pact with a devil when his greatest foe dies he will die.

Today's Secret Code

"Never ask the drunkard about the vintage."  Again:  "Never ask the drunkard about the vintage."  Today's Colour is Mad Dog Burgundy.  Today's Author searches for the wine that walks like a boy, Pinotchio.  That is all, maho maho.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Miracle Dancers of Tubla Minsk

Child of the Maze

The Minotaur was lusty
when it wasn't thristing for blood
Sometimes a child was born
and sometimes they favored
their father

Shallow Gravy

Mongo Wrestling Alliance

This is the newness on Adult Swim.  A sort of an alternate universe where professional wrestling is far more real and important than here.  Our hero is heir to a proud legacy.  With friends aiding him he goes about a rather hilarious version of the hero's journey.  Few heroes have to face threats like midget wrestlers with flaming asses.  The animation is middle ground for Adult Swim.  The jokes are also middling but with potential.  Like "Rocky," it has heart even if it's a little twisted.  Heck, Harry Dean Staton is lending his voice so that alone will keep me watching. 

"A Feast For Crows" George R. R. Martin

Well here it is, the fourth book in Martin's epic fire and ice saga. In some ways this is a very frustrating book. Most of our favorite characters do not show up at all in this novel except by the shadows of the actions they have cast over Westro and beyond. It's a little disconcerting, it's like one of those dinner parties where you suddenly realize your friends have gone off for a smoke or something and now you are talking to someone you haven't really met. Once you get used to it, though, there are some neat characters. We've met Cersei the queen mother before, but we've never really gotten in her head as we do in this novel. Not that her head is a nice place, but it's interesting watching her self destruct. Actually, this novel could be subtitled "How not to rule." A few things I've learned from Cersei's term as leader...

  • Never piss off the money men
  • If you think someone is a fool, don't employ them to do something cunning
  • If you are only going to hire yes men you are going to limited your responses
  • There are reasons you don't arm religious zealots
The only Stark children we follow this time around are the girls.  They now have new identies and are learning some interesting life lessons.  Sansa is now with creepy Littlefinger and learning all about how to manipulate people.  As one of most misused pawns of the book I hope she might really learn something.  The younger sister, meanwhile, is now in learning maybe a little too much about death at the temple of the Many Faced One. 

Samwell, friend of John Snow, is also reluctantly seeking knowledge as he heads to Oldtown where the Maesters are trained.  We do get to see Oldtown for the first time, and get to know the Dornish who live in deserty south of the realm.  These are both interesting new players in the game, and thus far this part of the realm hasn't been touched by war.  But of course it is just a matter of time.

That's the thing about this novel, it's something of a very violent lull.  Some characters even think that the war is winding down.  Of course it isn't.  There are already new plots being put in place and new players joining.  If anything, things promise to be even bloodier in the future.   Also, Winter is here, and folks face a real chance of starvation now.  Things are going to get very desparate soon. 

All in all, I'm glad I read this book 2 weeks before the next volume comes out.  How you other people managed to stay sane after years of waiting I'll never known.

I know when I'm not wanted..

Monster of the Day: Triffids

Source: Day of the Triffids
Location: All over the damn place
Threat Assessment: 3 going on 7. By it's lonesome a triffid isn't too bad. It's A large plant capable of movement with a long poisonous stinger. Trouble is, there isn't one triffid there are millions.
Limitation: Best weapon against the triffids was a type of crossbow device that shot out the equivalent of circular saw blades. If you don't have one of those a shot gun or flame thrower is fine.

Today's Secret Code

"When you are finally above it all and looking down, just keep one word in mind...'Avalanche.'" Again: "When you are finaly above it all and looking down, just keep one word in mind...'Avalanche.'" Today's Colour is a pristine white. Today's Author is quite a sight. That is all, maho maho.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Monster of the Day: Alucard

Source:  Hellsing
Location:  London
Threat Assessment:  8.  Yeah you think vampires just glitter?  Give corny line readings like "I never"  Well they ain't the real deal.   Alucard is the real deal, and when he is completely unleashed he's like a terrible dark god.
Limitation:  losing his head would be bad, and he's under the control of the Hellsing organization... barely