The Captain America: Civil War Trailer Is Here, And It’s Awesome!

The teaser trailer for Captain America: Civil War  debuted last night and it … looks …. AWESOME. The Russo Brothers are back to direct the sequel after the success of Captain America: Winter Soldier and from the 2 1/2 minutes of footage we have here it looks like they are picking up right where they left off.

There is a lot to digest in this trailer.  Picking up after the events of Age of Ultron where there is a movement afoot to hold the Avengers accountable for another international incident involving significant collateral damage.  This movement appears to headed up by none other than General Thunderbolt Ross (William Hurt reprising his role from 2008’s The Incredible Hulk).  Iron Man agrees, but Captain America does not and what happens is heroes fighting heroes.

Iron Man.  Captain America. Black Widow. War Machine. Scarlett Witch. Falcon. Hawkeye. Ant-Man. Black Panther ….. BLACK PANTHER!!!!

BlackPantherLet’s just talk about Black Panther for a minute. His costume design is fantastic and the trailer gives us our first official look at T’Challa other than concept artwork or leaked set photos (which doesn’t give the suit justice).

I’ve long held a soft spot for Black Panther, when I came upon several old issues of Marvel Premiere from the 1970s. It looks as though the Russo Brothers’ interpretation of the King of Wakanda may be spot on.

Captain America: Civil War will be in theaters May 6, 2016.


This Japanese “Star Wars” Commercial from 1978 is Absolutely Insane — 30ish Days of Star Wars

Back In 1978 the Japanese-based Hagaramo Foods Corporation decide to cash in on the Star Wars craze.  Except they didn’t sell sugary cereal or action figures as their primary product line was canned foods, which is notoriously boring.

hqdefaultWhat better way to get people excited about eating their product than to have a splashy, special effects laden commercial with the likes of Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker? Now I’m sure there was Japanese ad executive who said, “of course we can get LucasFilm to sign off on this!”

It should come as no surprise that LucasFilm did not sign off on this licensing agreement which led to one of the most insane Japanese commercials in the history of insane Japanese commercials.

I’m not quite sure what my favorite part of this commercial is.  Right now it’s a close tie between the explosive entrance of Darth Vader and the roller skating C-3PO serving up a delicious tray of sea chicken in the most hilarious way possible.

I don’t know about you, but I could go for some sea chicken right now.

via [Tech Crunch]

Galactic Book Club — Star Wars: Aftermath (2015) – 30ish Days of Star Wars

On a recent business trip I finally had a chance to finish Star Wars: Aftermath, which had been sitting idle on my Kindle for a few months.  When Disney acquired LucasFilm, one of the big changes was the wholesale removal of the Expanded Universe from the Star Wars canon.  Major story lines and characters that cropped up in books, comics and video games over the last 35 years would not referenced in any of the new movies or media.

Star Wars: Aftermath was the first novel in the “Journey to The Force Awakens” and would tell the story of what happened in the events immediately after Return of the Jedi.  What happened after the Ewok’s victorious yub-nubs on Endor and the statue of Emperor Palpatine was pulled down on Coruscant? Author Chuck Wendig was tapped by the powers at be at LucasFilm to provide fans a new launching point for the Star Wars universe.

Continue reading

Join the Fight Against the Empire in Star Wars X-Wing (1993) — 30ish Days of Star Wars

xwing_coverIn the halycon days of 1994 my parents made a huge investment in a monolithic 66mhz computer that ran Windows 3.1.  One of the features that had me super excited was the double speed CD-ROM!  I’m sure my mom intended it for purely educational purposes, as Microsoft Encarta was one of the first purchases she made.  My dad on the other hand, had other ideas as one of the first CD-ROM games he bought for me was Star Wars: X-Wing.

Star Wars: X-Wing allowed you to jump into the cockpit of the titular Incom T-65 starfighter (or the the A-Wing or Y-Wing) and fight the Galactic Empire in missions set before and leading up to the Battle of Yavin.

1993_X-WingBy early 1990s standards, the game play in X-Wing was amazing.  The ability to use a joystick, while using keyboard controls to balance shields, engine speed, and lasers was about as interactive as you could get.  There were cut scenes (albeit hand drawn) and music pulled from the movies.  Star Wars: X-Wing had a couple of expansion packs B-Wing and Imperial Pursuit and spawned a few sequels.  This game made an indelible mark on my young gaming life, and as far as Star Wars games go was probably my favorite until the release of Star Wars: Rogue Squadron for the N64

In 2014, the games were repackaged and available for download on for all you nostalgic X-Wing jockeys out there for a very reasonable price.

Infuriating LEGO Math: The “Scooby Doo” Edition

img160x210_scooby-dooOn August 1st The LEGO Group will be releasing their line of sets based on Scooby Doo, which is a franchise that has been on television in one variation or another since 1969.  Cartoon Network is launching a new series, Be Cool, Scooby Doo, later this year and I guess it seemed as good a time as ever for some new merchandise.

Our LEGO Overlords are quite cruel when it comes to these licensed themes, breaking up teams across multiple sets to ensure that parents and AFOLs alike will have to spend a good amount of money to round out the group.

The members of Mystery Inc.are spread across five sets in this initial wave, with Shaggy and Scooby in every single set.  Velma and Fred appear in only one set each, with Daphne making an appearance in two sets.  There are two variations of Scooby Doo, one sitting and the other standing.  The sitting Scooby appears in two sets while the remaining three have the standing variants.

In order to complete the Mystery Inc. squad (that will give you both Scooby variants) you are going to have to pick up 75902 Mystery Machine, 75904 Mystery Mansion, and 75901 Mystery Plane Adventure at a total of $139.97!  Zoinks!!!!!

I have a distinct feeling that 75902 Mystery Machine will be the hottest seller of the bunch, and may prove difficult to locate at retail, much like 76031 The Hulk Buster Smash was leading up to the release of Avengers: Age of Ultron.  Keep in mind this pricing is based on the prices listed at LEGO Shop @ Home.  If you are shopping at Toys R Us or any of the big box retailers expect to pay a little bit more of a markup.

Arm Chair SDCC ’15 – Hall H Line Chaos, Transformers Combiner Wars, Mondo’s Mutant Turtles and More!

ArmchairSDCC15The dust has settled on the first day of San Diego Comic Con as attendees are hurrying back to their hotel rooms to try and flip exclusives on eBay or sneak into industry after parties.

While the big panels in Hall H are gearing up for Friday afternoon, there still was a fair bit of awesome stuff coming out today.  Read on for some of the highlights from day one!

The Hall H Line Almost Descended into Chaos!

Apparently some unscrupulous Hall H line waiters exploited a weakness in the crowd control barriers and were able to sneak through an area that was intended for ADA use.  their victory was short lived as the Internet outed them and the SDCC Sheriffs sent them packing.

[via Comics Beat]

AutobotTF_SDCC Combiner Wars Seriess … COMBINE & ROLL OUT! 

Hasbro announced that a “grown up”  animated Transformers series will be debuting later this year on Machinima.  It will be based on the current theme of Combiner Wars, so expect lots of gigantic robot on robot action with none of the Micheal Bay!

The Autobot combiner Superion is featured on the key art which was unveiled at the Hasbro panel, so I imagine that he will be playing a big part along with Devastator, Bruticus along with the all-new, all-female combiner Victorion   [via io9]

Mondo Goes Mutant

SDCC TMNT MondoThe Austin-based purveyors of limited edition posters, vinyl records and t-shirts quietly got into the collectibles game last year.  One of the biggest surprises in their booth was that they acquired the license to produce 1/6th scale Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle action figures.

These fully articulated action figures will have interchangeable heads for their comic and cartoon appearance along with a smattering of other accessories.

The word is that each of these figures will go for roughly $150 and Mondo is committed to producing the core characters.  The display was littered with teasers like Krang, Mousers and a 1:1 scaled Casey Jones mask.  These really do look fantastic but are WAY out of my discretionary spending budget.

[via Awesome Toy Blog]

Ben Affleck Will Direct the Solo ‘Batman’ Film

Everyone assumes at this point that part of getting Ben Affleck to sign on as the Caped Crusader was to guarantee that he’d get to direct himself in the planned stand alone Batflick.

Ben-Affleck-Batman-The biggest news is that Geoff Johns, DC Entertainment’s Chief Creative Officer will cowriting the film with Affleck also.  It will be a while before Batman starts production as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League are all ahead of the project.

[via Comics Alliance]

The Uncanny & Unspectacular Marvel Experience

The Marvel Experience was billed an immersive multimedia event which allowed fans to interact with their favorite superheroes from the Marvel Universe.  The $30 million dollar production was set for a nationwide tour after premiering in Philadelphia in June.  However the production was beset by technical difficulties and poor reviews from the press and fans alike.


The remainder of the tour was abruptly canceled by the producers, leaving many ticket holders disappointed, probably less so than those who actually went to the event.

From The Hollywood Reporter:

Producers of the show — which includes 360-degree projections, holograms and a 4D motion ride — said Sunday that its big debut in Philadelphia will be its one and only stop. The Chicago, New York and St. Louis legs have been canceled.  Refunds will be available. No reason was given for the show’s abrupt cancellation.

The underlying reason why The Marvel Experience was shuttered was due to the fact that it was an overpriced mall attraction fraught with technical difficulties and poor word of mouth.

Reddit user Trill_McNeal relayed this rather ridiculous anecdote from their visit

We got stuck in the holding chamber between the two domes (where you get the safety briefing from spidey) for about 10 min. The hulk arm that was supposed to open the door at the end of the video malfunctioned and the door would only open a few inches then it shut. The workers just looked at each other and shrugged and let the video play again and tried to open the door at the end. It didn’t open so they let the video play again. It wasn’t a big deal, there were only about 20 people there at that point and we just thought it was amusing.

In his review on, Nick Vadala expressed that the lack of cohesion was problematic and that technical difficulties were ever present.

At various stages, video screens froze and restarted themselves entirely. At others, Halloween costume-quality props hung a cheap pall over the Marvel Experience’s shot at being immersive. Not exactly what you’d expect for about $50 a person.

Interestingly enough, The Marvel Experience had already been retooled after its initial test run in Arizona last December.  It seems as though Hero Ventures was never able to execute their vision. This seems to be a trend as they were also behind the abomination that was Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark.

LEGO Unveils Another Unobtainable Comic Con Exclusive

If anything has been consistent about the pop culture nexus that is San Diego Comic Con is that year after year The LEGO Group’s exclusives remain the most ridiculously difficult to obtain for non-attendees.  It appears that the 2015 slate of exclusives will continue that trend; with the latest, an awesome brick built homage to Action Comics #1.


The 145-piece set does a pretty remarkable job of recreating Joe Shuster’s iconic comic book cover.  Like the other exclusives from The LEGO Group, a raffle will be held on site each day to determine who will be able to then lineup and purchase this set, which will sell for $39.99.  Expect this set to be at $250.00 on the secondary market by the time the first scalper clears the booth.


via [The Brick Fan]

6 Of The Most Ridiculous Jurassic Park Action Figures Ever Made

Since 1993 the Jurassic Park franchise has generated over two billion dollars in revenue at the box office.  Back in the early nineties, Kenner was still king of the action figure aisle and secured the rights to produce toys based on Steven Spielberg’s epic adventure film.  After the demise of Kenner, Hasbro absorbed the rights and used many of the original Kenner molds to produce untold repaints of dinosaurs and their human counterparts.  In that time some truly ridiculous action figures were produced with the six most notorious highlighted here.

6) Mosasaurus Vs. Submarine, Jurassic World Series I (2015)

I have yet to see Jurassic World, but I am pretty sure that at no point does this giant marine dinosaur square off against a submerisble that was a rejected design from SeaQuest DSV 


5) Dr. Snare, Jurassic Park Series II (1993)

I am guessing that Dr. Snare is the leader of the Evil Raiders. Everything about this action figures drips bad guy. His shirtless-ness, thigh bandolier, duster, and dinosaur skin boots scream everything that was bad about nineties action figure lines.


4) Military General, Jurassic Park III Series I (2001)

Do you guys remember the whole military presence in Jurassic Park III? Me neither.


3) Evil Raiders Strike Cycle, Jurassic Park Series II (1993)

Like most action figure lines you can’t have good guys without some bad guys.  Enter the Evil Raiders who stalked Isla Nublar on their bitchin’ tricycles.  This vehicle was featured in the second wave which over the years has become harder to find on the secondary market.



2) Ajay Sidhu, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, Series II (1997)

Do you remember the character Ajay Sidhu at all? He was actually in the movie as the sidekick to big game hunter Roland Tembo as portrayed by the late Peter Poslethwaite.  He may very well be the most obscure character to EVER get an action figure in the history of action figures.


1) Ian Malcolm, Jurassic Park Chaos Effect Series I (1998)


Image via

In 1998, Kenner released a new sub-line of the Jurassic Park line where scientists merged DNA of various dinosaur species resulting in “genetically mutated dines gone bad”.  And who better to combat this threat than mathematician Ian Malcolm?

This version of Ian Malcolm has him in costume than can only be described as a Ghostbuster by way of an Eco Warrior.  This sub-line only had two human figures, a few vehicles, and roughly ten dinosaurs.  Unfortunately a glow in the dark wave called the “Night Hunters” was cancelled and a Battle Mech with an exclusive Ian Malcolm never made it past the prototype stage.

Blobfest Returns to the Colonial Theatre This July

colonial_theatre_cropI have long been a fan of the historic Colonial Theatre and its diverse slate of programming.  For one weekend every summer Bridge Street in Phoenixville is taken over by Blobfest, a celebration of the theatre’s starring role in the 1958 science fiction classic The Blob.

The festivities start on Friday night with the sold out “run out” and carry through Sunday afternoon.  During the course of the weekend there will be screenings of The Blob, Creature from the Black Lagoon (in 3D!), Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein and The Ghastly Love of Johnny X.

Tickets for the weekend’s various events can be purchased directly through the theatre’s website.  For more information about screening times and parking information check out the Blobfest 2015 page on Facebook.