Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Going back to Santa Carla

Back in 1987 this little movie came out by the name of “The Lost Boys.” Yeah, I didn’t think you’d heard of it. Netflix it, you’ll like it. This little gem was shot, in part, in Santa Cruz (re-named Santa Carla in the film). After re-watching this classic 80’s film I decided to check out some of the spots where filming took place and see what they looked like today. The following are stills from the film and what it looks like today. For the most part they look the same except for the comic shop (Atlantis Fantasyworld) which had to relocate after the '89 Loma Prieta quake. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Doctor Who Video Games!

With the popularity of Doctor Who, it's been weird that the property has been absent from the video game landscape. It would seem that the Doctor would be a perfect fit for a video game with its excellent villains (The Daleks, The Weeping Angels, The Cybermen). I mean, how AWESOME would it be to stop a Dalek invasion? The only game that's been released since the series' return has been a Top Trumps card game that was available on PS2, DS, Wii and PC. It was not a well-received game. Now comes word that there will be a new Wii game out in time for Christmas. David Tennant, was qouted as saying, "The video game was quite actively developed, but it's difficult to nail as the Doctor doesn't blow things up." Does this mean the game will feature the tenth Doctor or will it be changed to tie into the current Doctor's adventures?

While that question has yet to be answered, the BBC announced their plans to release the first official PC/Mac games called Doctor Who: The Adventure Games. There will be four adventures that will be available to download free throught the fifth season as they will be tied to the series. Matt Smith and Karen Gillan will reprise their roles and the scripts will be written by Phil Ford and James Moran. The games are being produced by Steven Moffat with music by Murray Gold. Look for the first game on June 5th, 2010 at the official Doctor Who website.

Free Comic Book Day is coming!!!

Every year the comics industry holds an annual promotion in an effort to bring new readers into the medium as well as to help get customers into comic shops. The origins of Free Comic Book day are rooted in Concord, California. Joe Field, owner of the Flying Colors comic shop was inspired by the Free Cone Day held every year by the Baskin-Robbins across the street from his shop. Field contacted several comics distributors about doing something similar and the rest is history. The event is held every first Saturday in May, usually coinciding with the release of a big-screen movie adaptation of a comic property. This year, "Iron Man 2" is the first comic movie being released.

For those in the Santa Cruz area, you can head on over to Atlantis Fantasyworld (1020 Cedar Street) or Comicopolis (829 Front Street) to pick up your free comics. Atlantis always has some great deals that run the whole weekend and usually their comic book bucks are worth double! The special guest at Atlantis this year will be Sergio Aragones, best known for his work on MAD Magazine, from 1-5 p.m. Atlantis will have a limited 8 1/2'' x 11'' print created by Sergio, specially for this event and all proceeds from the print will go to the CBLDF. For those not in the area you can locate your local comic shop at Have fun and support your local comic shop!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

In defense of remakes, reboots and big-screen adaptations

Apparently, Hollywood has no new ideas. It seems like all the rage lately has been (aside from 3D) remakes, reboots and big-screen adaptations. “Clash of the Titans” was just released and took in $64 million on its opening weekend. The film (which, in my opinion, could’ve used more Bubo) is the latest remake to hit screens. This summer sees a remake of “The Karate Kid” and a big-screen version of the “A-Team.” I was one of those guys in the theater watching that trailer and saying, “Worst. Idea. Ever.” But recently I’ve started to change my stance. I’ve started to think that I’m not their target audience so why be one of those people that complains about it.

I was having a discussion with a friend that said he never has and never will see the original “Psycho.” Why? Because “it’s in black and white.” I told him that it was made in black and white because Hitchcock wanted it to feel like a low-budget exploitation film. To which his reply was, “it looks old.” This friend said that he really liked Gus Van Sant’s version of the film and that they should remake older movies if he was going to ever watch them.

This got me thinking and I have to say that I’m totally for it. Personally, I’d love to see a remake of “North By Northwest” with George Clooney (he’s got that Carey Grant thing down). I’d also LOVE to see a “Vertigo” with Tom Hanks and Keira Knightley. No one could EVER touch what Hitchcock did but if it made someone interested in the original then that’s a good thing, right? They remade Hitch’s “Rear Window” into “Disturbia” and the end of “Eagle Eye” was lifted straight from the end of “The Man Who Knew Too Much.” If they are going to remake his flicks they should, at the very least, get some great directors and actors instead of casting Shia LaBarf again and again. Beyond Hitchcock flicks, it would be awesome to see remakes of the Anthony Edwards flick “Gotcha” and the Patrick Dempsey classic “Run.”

I’m now definitely looking forward to the upcoming big-screen adaptations and reboots. Gonna take them with a grain of salt because for every bed adaptation (SWAT, Bewitched), there's a good one that comes along (South Park, Star Trek: First Contact). Along with “21 Jump Street” there’s also a “Gilligan’s Island” and “The Smurfs” movies in the works. Plus, there are reboots for Spider-Man, Daredevil and the Fantastic Four. “The Incredible Hulk” and Batman had reboots and they weren’t that bad (though I prefer Ang Lee’s vision of the Hulk). Ultimately a studio’s purpose is to make money and there is a built-in audience when it comes to comic films. This is great for superhero fans because even if it’s a bad reboot, we still get new comic book flicks. That’s better than studio’s spending money on more Nicolas Sparks movies.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Love for the Monkey Jedi

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for, well, the thanks I got for the WonderCon shirt. Totally not necessary. Just giving back to those who entertain me. Click to check out what they had to say and while you're there, check out their awesome sites:

Hour 42

Geek with Curves

Action Flick Chick

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

For the past twelve years I’ve been getting my geek on in the theatre world. Before that, though, I was all about the comics and sci-fi. I was the guy wearing the Star Wars shirt and writing reports on Spider-Man in high school. I was lucky enough to attend WonderCon in San Francisco this year (my first con in about 14 years!) and it was everything I expected and more. They’re definitely bigger than I remember them.

For the event I decided to have my friends at The T-Shirt Mafia print up some shirts for me. Along with this blog, I had them add some sites that I follow that have helped bring me back to the fold as a thank you (they're all a great group of geeks!). I’ve got a decade’s worth of comics to catch up on and these guys have definitely helped with that. They also keep me in the loop with what’s currently going on. Check their sites regularly and follow them on twitter for all kinds of geeky news and reviews!

Hour 42- A weekly show “covering heroes - on the air, in the air and all around us.” Hosted by Peter Pixie and El Secreto

Has Boobs, Reads Comics- A blog run by Jill “The Nerdy Bird” Pantozzi. You can also read her work over at Heartless Doll, MTV Splash Page and Girls Entertainment Network.

Action Flick Chick- Join G4TV's Next Woman of the Web, Action Flick Chick Katrina Hill, as she builds her library of reviews and interviews.

Geek with Curves- A great blog by Amy Ratcliffe (“a girl with a love for Lord of the Rings, graphic novels, Dungeons & Dragons, all things Whedon, Star Trek: TNG, the magical interwebz, Star Wars, costumes, webcomics, renfaires, and most things science fiction and fantasy.”) You can also check out her work at

The con took place Friday through Sunday (April 2-4). There were never-before-seen screenings of Fringe, Human Target, and V. There was anime playing all day, every day. There were cosplayers, celebrity signings and of course, comics. Basically, geek heaven. Dark Horse, Geoff Johns, Kick Ass, Chuck and A Nightmare on Elm Street were just some of the many panels throughout the weekend. The two panels that I was most excited about happened back-to-back, Dark Horse and Geoff Johns.

Highlights from the Dark Horse panel:

-There will be several new Star Wars series’ come 2011!

-Dollhouse comics? No plans but, “whenever Joss wants to…”

-There will definitely be more Firefly!

-Robert Rodriguez has been working very closely with Dark Horse on an adaptation of the upcoming Predators movie. Not only that, but he’s also working with them on a prequel and sequel.


-Joss will be writing the final arc of season 8 of Buffy. Now that it’s been revealed that Angel is Twilight, we’ll learn why. Plus, for those of us who are fans of Buffy/Angel, there is going to be a payoff in a “big” way ("sorry Buffy/Spike fans").

Highlights from the Geoff Johns panel:

-We will get a Larfleeze Christmas special later this year!

-We’ll be seeing “a lot more” of the Indigo Tribe in the pages of Green Lantern.

-When asked if DC will follow in the footsteps of Marvel and connect future films for a Justice League film, we got a “we’ll talk in San Diego.”

-The Flash movie is “in development.” And, oh yeah, “The Flash is in it.”

The biggest event for me was the Kevin Smith Q&A on Friday night. The man isn’t just a filmmaker; he’s an all-around entertainer. His ability to be so candid about his life instantly humanizes him and makes him relatable. I have literally never laughed so hard in my life. For a solid two hours. Smith will be recording a live Smodcast in May in San Francisco which, hopefully, I’ll be attending.

WonderCon also saw the U.S. premiere of the first episode of “Doctor Who.” Coming out of the Tennant years I was a little unsure that Matt Smith would be able to carry the role. It took about ten minutes but I’m totally sold. I’m not going to give anything away for those who haven’t seen it yet (I’m sure most of you have) but fear not; Moffat, Smith and Karen Gillan are going to take us on quite a ride! This season we're going to get Daleks, Weeping Angels and a Richard Curtis penned episode (You so don't know how exciting this is for me. I got all tween giddy over that news. I LOVES me some Ricard Curtis). The U.S. premiere of Doctor Who airs April 17th on BBC America.