Friday, January 10, 2014


Silmarillion [sil-muh-ril-ee-un]
1. Literature. A collection of the mythopoeic works of J.R.R. Tolkein posthumously collected, edited, and published by his son Christopher Tolkein with the assistance of Guy Gavriel Kay in 1977. It serves as a origin story of the setting, including the genesis of Ea and creation of the various factions/races, that The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings take place.

mythopoeia [mith-uh-pee-uh]
1. The creation of myth.
2. A modern genre of literature and film where a fictional mythology is created by the fiction.

EX. This guy's work made me want to complete the mythopoeia of my own fantasy world, The Wold, which involves old gods, new gods, clay people, each race having a counter to their creation, crazy geographical shifts and a lot of nonsensical stuff that fit into any creation story. The fascinating thing about origin stories is that they tell you a lot about the world but even more about the people, since their world view is often shaped by their myths.

Aaron Diaz, author of Dresden Codak, has taken to illustrating a cover for each chapter of J. R. R. Tolkein's Silmarillion on tumblr and each work is a beautifully rendered illustration that encapsulates each era of Middle Earth's ancient past. My favorite work comes in the way he depicts the Valar and Melkor (pictured at the top), the gods of Middle Earth, and imbues them each with their aspects and a personality. I also love the way he draws his monsters.

I mean... just look at the stylized glory of these cartoonishly but impressively rendered creatures of Middle Earth reminiscent of the Jim Henson studios films inspired by the works of Brian Froud, such as The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

WORD OF THE DAY! 1/9/14!

dub [dub]
1. Film/video/television/animation, etc. To add an audio track, usually a voice track, in post-production on a project, usually to correct an incorrectly or misplaced line, censor an inappropriate line, add dialogue, switch in a foreign language track, or localize the dialogue.
2. Film/video/television/animation, etc. An audio track, usually a voice track, added in post-production on a project, usually to correct an incorrectly or misplaced line, censor an inappropriate line, add dialogue, switch in a foreign language track, or localize the dialogue.

EX. Dub vs. sub (or subtitles) is an ongoing debate in the Western anime fan community, but posted  here is something that wouldn't exist without dubs: the original Ghost Stories anime was created in 2000 and aired in Japan as a 20 episode series based on a book series by Toru Tsunemitsu. It was a somewhat typical anime about a gang of children investigating paranormal activity near their home and dealing with the supernatural threats to their town.

The dub, on the other hand, by ADV films took the basic outline of the anime and redubbed it with a script by Steven Foster, released in 2005, as part of their DVD release that included a lot of black comedy and meta humor that breaks the fourth wall with lots of adult humor, references, and commentary on anime. While some fans were outraged, the response from the critics and other fans were mostly positive and today many prefer the English dub by ADV films over the original subs/dubs or the serious dub made by Animax later.

Personally, this is one of the funniest dubs I've seen in a while and, considering how many abridged series are out there on youtube and filled with talented voice actors, that is saying something. To check out the whole series, you can find episodes on youtube or elsewhere online. You can start with the link below.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Let's start with the best bowl of tall grass that I could find in Kanto or, in this case, on the new youtube channel by Ross (of Steam Train (of Game Grumps)) Rubberninja.

The thing that gets me about a lot of these animations coming out on online these days is the level of quality; the animation, writing, and voice acting are so many magnitudes beyond what was possible just a few years ago online and it is all thanks to the collaboration of a network of flash animators and other web entertainers.

The future of animation is online.

Ricepirate joins in the fun with his own top tier Pokémon themed animation that is short, sweet, and right to the point. The point is flips and farts, apparently.

A little weirder, a little less quality, but a little more upcoming are the animations of artists like Cooli Sushi that are a little newer to the scene.

Let's end on an other especially high note with the longest short of the bunch by 2snacks. A Brazillian animator, 2snacks isn't very prolific but has produced some top tier toons and made a name for himself with his Two Best Sisters Play videos that combine audio from the Two Best Friends Play channel and My Little Pony characters to give us something, as I've said before, is perfect for TBFP fans and Bronies alike.

Seriously, it is a good time to be a fan of animation and of Pokémon.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


death punch [deth-punch]/ [shi-ken]
1. A lethal blow from the fist/s either intentionally or unintentionally, especially if excessively violent or destructive.

EX. Let's start out Tuesday with just a little dose of the ultraviolence.

I dunno why-- maybe I'm just desensitized to violence after two decades of video games and anime or, probably more likely, the over-the-top violence hits the sweet spot of comedy in defying your expectations by surprising me and/or going past the graphic and into the cartoonishly over-the-top-- but I love a good bit of violence in my entertainment from time to time. Sure, I'll watch all the Disney musicals and yeah I deplore violence as a way to resolve conflicts in all but the most extreme circumstances where it is the only option or the only option left, but in fiction I can enjoy the fantasy or spectacle that is over-the-top violence. Some people may find such violence to be offensive or even a bad influence. I find it to be a harmless outlet for the pent up rage fantasies that we, as a very violent species, tend to have at least every now and then.

It's the reason why I love movies like Super; watching fantasy violence that is intentionally or unintentionally ridiculous is cathartic, funny, and harmless. The obscene and graphic, when absurd, is gratifying. It's the reason I've wanted to create an anime with a guy with a giant fist who fights super powered villains just so he could just punch the crap out of them. It's the reason I've wanted to write a comic book about a guy who comes back from each grisly death with a temporary new super power every time he is killed. It's the reason that I let my Dungeons and Dragons adventures include moments like a wizard literally blowing an Ettin's mind until his heads are a couple of blood fountains like shook up blood cola spurting a few feet into the air.

Hell, it's the reason I'm giving Dead Snow 2 any attention. They had me at death punch.

Monday, January 6, 2014


N64 is/was probably the definite Christmas gift for many kids in the 90's and, honestly, it was a special time in gaming history. The N64 set the bar for 3D platforming with Super Mario 64, the FPS genre with Rare's 007: Golden Eye, and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is widely considered one of the best game, if not the best, games of all time. The console also firmly set Nintendo's position going forward; while Sony's Playstation consoles were focused on cutting edge technology and attracted a lot of third party support, Nintendo would hang around thanks to their uniquely Nintendo experience that, while being played on hardware a step behind, included games that couldn't be found on any other console thanks to being a step out of line with the rest of the game industry, often for the better, with offbeat, funny, and experimental titles.

Personally, if not for the janky controller, I think it would be as fondly coveted as it's predecessors the NES & SNES.

I don't have much to say with this one, but I will say I'm kind of said that Snowdown Showdown had to come to a close so early. Much like One for All, Riot has left fans wanting more. It really is a shame that the mode was only available for a limited time. It would be nice if we could at least keep them for Customs but, alas, I understand their desire to not add too many game modes to the game:

Adding more game mods ultimately can ultimately divide a community by replacing a few large well-populated and popular game types with a lot of under-populated and often mediocre game types can lead to the mass extinction of a game community.

Hell, this also illuminated the big problem with the MMO genre, as well as any multiplayer genre, when it comes to over-saturation: big multiplayer games require a large base of subscribers/people buying content to stay afloat because of the costs to first make the game and to continue updating a game designed to keep players interests indefinitely rather than having them stray away. World of Warcraft is the only very successful MMO because, whenever a competing title hits the scene, some players leave WoW but will always ultimately return to the experience populated by their friends and to keep from abandoning all of the work and time they invested into their characters. Until the WoW experience becomes stale to these players or an experience with enough widespread appeal and holding power can hit the market, making any new MMO is inadvisable. Many good game studios have crashed and burned trying to chase that dragon and many more will meet that fate.

Just some thoughts and observations for your perusal. Moving on...

Getting older means appreciating a good poop.

Sunday, January 5, 2014



And now we crash into the second half of the year that saw a series of ups and downs much more challenging than in the first half. I won't pretend that my life is especially difficult, but I am still proud of myself and thankful of the support of my family for doing what I gotta do and having the support to do that stuff.

But, on the other hand, I'm a lot more prepared for 2014 than I was for 2013; I've gained some perspective from my experiences and think I'm ready for anything life can throw at me in my 23rd year.

"In the 22nd regeneration of the implejr, he got a retail job, lost weight, mastered the science/art of beardcrafting, watched every episode of every Star Trek series, become a Bronze I summoner in League of Legends, played/reviewed a lot of board games, drafted plenty of Magic the Gathering, got a Wii-U with his own money, and gained a good bit of perspective. The 23rd regeneration, pictured here, probably needs to start dating again, should finally get his driver's license, will pay taxes this year, might get around to playing all of the games he has backlogged, could and should get in grad school or get my teaching certificate, has to write something and definitely needs a haircut. Hippy."

Part one can be found HERE.

And without further ado: