Friday, April 20, 2018

My non long winded Avengers Infinity War review

https://robomonkey147.deviantart.com/
Gonna open up this posting with this newly discovered classic ROM (IDW you still suck!) and Ms. Marvel (or Captain Marvel if you prefer) team up fan art piece and as you can see I also included some ROM vs Thanos themed fan art by the same artist who goes by the handle robomonkey on deviant art.


April 28th Update: Just got back in from seeing it and I have only one word . . .apocalyptic. With an even bigger and grander ensemble cast then Civil War and even more gut wrenching tragedy then Logan Avengers Infinity War will be the fastest two hours and forty minutes of your life. Not to mention the wait for the end credits scene. An end credits scene which is quite ironic for me considering the head line fan art I found for this posting only about a week ago. To be honest with you, what few complaints I do have are hardly worth mentioning. Mostly a few little logic gaps and a couple things that could have been explained a bit better and so on.
The writers did a good job of striking a nice balance of screen time with all the characters and I also liked how the story line broke up all the various characters into different settings in order to create new interactions and even personality conflicts to explore. A lot of themes were also explored as well that tested our heroes. We saw some of the unlikeliest characters coping with issues of fear, sacrifice, self confidence and even the challenges of coping with really shitty stuff that's inevitable. Aside from all that and despite this being a very dark film we still got a lot of the humorous banter we've all come to enjoy and expect from the MCU.


When it comes to Thanos (and his crew), DC could have borrowed a page from Marvel's play book when it comes to developing villains on the big screen who have been around for many years in the pages of comic books but are not house hold names yet. I really fear for the DC cinematic universe at this point I just feeling like the rapid successions of hits from Marvel is practically steam rolling whatever they can come up with. But getting back to Infinity War, it leaves you with a lot of questions and in general a lot to process because of all the shit that goes on for that nearly 3 hour running time if you include the end credits scene. I suppose that can be a good thing or bad thing depending how you might want to look at it. It really sucks to think of how long we might have to wait (hopefully no more then a year) for the sequel because I want to see it now . . .dammit.


After I got out of the theater and turned my phone back on I had this photo waiting for me that a friend sent me while he was at an event at Levi Stadium in Santa Clara. Would have been cool if he had actually been able to talk to the owner about this van.


And speaking of signature vans from the 80s here's the the one the A-Team drove around in. I took this photo almost two years ago while passing through a random neighborhood in San Francisco. I love it when a plan comes together.


I'm not a gamer or into the whole Halo thing so I must have passed by this toy with out ever noticing what it's called probably over a dozen times in the past year. But by random happenstance a few days ago it finally caught my eye.
Left click to enlarge


Here's a little something from my past I feel like sharing today. This little place in San Leandro used to be the first comic shop I ever went to. It opened in 1980 but it wasn't until 82 or 83 that my dad first started taking me there and it was at this shop where I had my first opportunity to start finding the ROM back issues I needed. I even remember seeing issue #1 boarded and bagged up on the wall going for $5 which was a lot of money at the time for a kid who was around 10 or 11 especially with the cover price of comics being only 65 cents back then. By the late 80s and through out the 90s it wasn't that uncommon to find ROM #1 in a dollar box but today the asking price for a copy even in fair condition seems to start at around $25.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Finally! An animated series from marvel that doesn't suck. The Black Panther


I'm only 2 episodes into this 6 episode Black Panther series and I'm already convinced that this is the first good animated series from Marvel Comics in over 20 years! What makes it so good exactly? I'm glad you asked. First of all, it's well written. And not just because it's boarder line R rated with shit like booby traps that impale people and villains seeing prostitutes. It's funny with out being campy, touches on social issues like religion and race in a very fearless way and is heavily steeped in history and international politics in something of a James Bond kinda fashion. It takes everything that was good about The Black Panther movie and expands on it but at the same time it feels a little more like the Black Panther you grew up with in the Marvel Comics universe. I usually expect this type of sophistication in animated features from DC so it was nice to see it in Marvel for a change.


Did I mention all the appearances by other characters in the Marvel Universe? Even within the first few episodes you'll see over a half dozen of those. Here's Captain America while on a covert mission in Wakanda having something of a misunderstanding with Black Panther during WW II.


So far, I really can't say enough good things about this animated series and it's got me even more stoked for Avengers Infinity War later this month. Who doesn't love Storm right? And you'll get to see several other X-Men to.


Now if you'll excuse me I need to get back with my Black Panther binge watching today on Youtube. I'm trying to get through the rest of the episodes (just 3 more to go) before I have to go to bed it's Monday tomorrow and we all know what that means.

So here we are a few hours later and I managed to finish watching all 6 episodes and even our sweet little 12 year old corgi beagle mix (Chevy) enjoyed it. So much so that we managed to get her to hold still just long enough to get this adorable photo. So in closing folks this was some really good stuff and little did I know this series goes back to 2011.



Episodes 1 - 6
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry8e5ldzLDQ&t=667s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGTw6pfKayg
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWr5oIRueTQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lF2OWH7vghQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2Q721QWX2w
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBm2-TPxIuY&t=2s



Also yesterday, I saw this on the news and it had me cracking up so I recorded it with my iphone and posted it on youtube.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Avengers Infinity War and the deleted scene you never knew about


Thanos is not the only threat facing Wakanda, this is a still image from a deleted scene in Infinity War. In the scene trump also goes on to say that Wakanda is just another a "shit hole" country.

Left click to enlarge
Here's a cool photo of some of the smaller transports, freighters and fighters in my rebel fleet collection as seen in the battle of Scarrif from Rogue 1. Did I happen to mention how much I loved Rogue 1? It's the same as with Avengers Civil War I can't see either of those two awesome movies enough times. Oh Infinity War please don't suck!

Now that fan art is the ROM spaceknight we all know and love!
And yes I did hear the news about what will most likely be a ROM in name only movie possibly being in the works as part of a hasbro franchise cinematic roll out. As I said in the comments section in the previous posting in order for a movie like that to have broad appeal for a contemporary cinematic audience it's highly unlikely that it will be the ROM you remember from the 80s. I think the best we can hope for is for it to be a well written sci-fi movie that pays tribute to the comic book series in a thoughtful manner. A armor redesign that didn't totally suck (hint hint idw) would certainly be a step in the right direction.
Oh well I guess we'll just have to wait and see for now. But in the mean time I'm much more concerned about the disturbing reports in regards to a season 2 for Netflix's Defenders which is apparently not likely going to happen. I really think that fucken sucks, among other things I was really hoping to finally see Misty Knight with her bionic arm and a Punisher appearance.


Firefall seems to be a reoccurring theme with my postings lately. Far as I know, this Marvel Two In One issue 99 (1983) tribute art from Bob Hall is the only decent ROM related fan art to show up on the internet for the past month. Basically since my sketch card (see previous posting). But if there's something else out there I don't know about please feel free to let me know about it . . anyone? . . anyone?

So is anybody out there getting tired of me taking swipes at the married but no condom wearing porn star fucken trump on this blog? Or perhaps you're sick and tired of me for still bashing on idw's pathetic ROM reboot? Not happy about my lack of enthusiasm about the prospect of an upcoming ROM movie? Didn't see season 1 of  The Defenders or you did see it and didn't like it? Well then, if the answer is yes to any or all of the above questions then please say hello to my little friend.



April 3rd Update: Somebody today just brought this Marvel 70s tribute fan art to my attention. I had seen it before a couple of years ago or so but kinda forgot about and it for whatever reason and it doesn't really ever turn up whenever I do random internet searches for ROM related things. This is actually a cropped version of the original which included Deathlok along with ROM and Omega The Unknown (who!?) as you see here but I always felt like Deathlok never really worked in the scene for what was other wise a well done fan art piece. Compare this cropped version with the original and tell me if I'm making any sense here . . .
https://error-imagenotfound.deviantart.com/art/Return-To-The-1970-s-712259686



April 5th Update: These two beauties (Valkyrie form Thor Ragnarok and Misty Knight ofcourse) just showed up in the past couple days in the mail box. They're going to make a great addition to the Black Panther figurines displayed in my wife's office at work I can't wait to surprise her with them. Oh and by the way I also just found out today that Misty Knight will debut in Cage season 2 with her bionic arm so that certainly eases the pain of the bad news for The Defenders.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

ROM and the spaceknights of Galador vs Ronan The Accuser epic cosmic throw down

Left click to enlarge
Here's my latest 3 1/2 X 5 sketch card fan art after months of not feeling motivated to actually produce anything despite some of the ideas I've had rolling around in my head. Some of those ideas included a hypothetical encounter between ROM and Ronan the accuser and doing something (as a separate piece) with one of the most bad ass looking spaceknights ever, Gloriole. So I decided to just put it all together as one scene and later added Firefall which I thought was a nice touch. This would have been so awesome! Almost as much as Terrax The Tamer mixing it up with Galador's spaceknights in ROM 26 (thank you Bill and Sal!) when Galactus showed up to make Galador his latest meal. Just as Terrax was forced to contend with all those different spaceknight powers so to would Ronan in some other type of confrontation scenerio. Like I said it, would have been awesome.


The official handbook of the Marvel Universe #9 back in 1983 was actually my first introduction to the Ronan the accuser character. Quite literally over the decades I've seen him evolve from what basically was a Fantastic Four villain to a much more complex character and ultimately something of a anti-hero  in Marvel cosmic story like The Annihilation Wave and War of Kings.

1985
March 3rd Update: A little something interesting I found today in regards to some of Bill Mantlo's thoughts on the cancellation of the ROM series. Issue 66 was the official end of the Wraith War on Earth but the series went on for another 9 regular issues and 1 annual. As those of you who have read the series know the story concludes with a post apocalyptic situation on Galador in which a new generation of spaceknights went rogue and turned on the rest of the population in a "Skynet" kind of way.

Left click to enlarge
March 4th Update: I recently added another blockade runner to my growing rebel fleet. This one has more of a blue stripe color scheme and is with out the battle damage detailing.


Hayward CA
March 12th Update: Mondays suck as we all know. Finding these awesome Black Panther and Okoye PVC figures on my door step went a long way to getting over a case of the Mondays. And just for the record, even before I heard the unfortunate news about the Toys R Us chain closures I would have been happy to buy these at my local Toys R Us store had they carried them. That Hayward store has been around since the early 80s and I used to go to that Chucke Cheese as well back in the day when it was full of video games.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Legion of Marvel 80s action figure super heroes and a candid look at what's going on in America


Left click to enlarge
Recently came across some cool photos of some pretty bad ass collections of Marvel 80s themed super hero action figures. You look up there at the top and they've got the ROM Hasbro figure along Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends. They even have their pet dog from the Saturday morning cartoon (probably the best of all the Saturday morning cartoons with The Hulk being a close second) can any body out there remember her name? And to the left we've got a couple nice customs of ROM and of Acroyear from The Micronauts.


This is kinda interesting. This might be some sort of concept or promo art by Al Milgrom that was never published for what ever reason. It's obviously based on the whole Archie Stryker Firefall story arc early on in the series. Curious about the two distinctively different looks for the dire wraiths.


It's certainly been a while since I've come across some new Sabra fan art. This beautifully illustrated piece comes from artist Leo David who also goes by Leo Jr. on deviant art.


Did you all get a load of the insanely juvenile twitter tirade that trump went on last weekend? My God he went after every body from Oprah Winfrey to Hillary (yet again) to the FBI (also yet again) and even his own National Security Advisor for daring to publicly acknowledge the fact that russia fucked with the 2016 election. What the Hell is wrong with this guy he really reminds me of one of those eccentric James Bond villains. I mean what ever happened to the days where we argued about emotional issues like same sex marriage and abortion instead of fundamental facts such as something like if the world is round or flat.
I some times feel like trump supporters live in this alternate reality where all this crazy shit coming from The White House is some how normal and that the internet some how provides some kind of bubble between realities where these trump supporters can communicate with non trump supporters who see all this crazy shit like from this past weekend as the crazy shit that it is. And I say all this as someone who disdains the radical left and is well aware that they inhabit another kind of alternate reality that is largely devoid of facts. All these anarchists, communists and 911 conspiracy moron social parasites who glorify every islamic terrorist as a freedom fighter and every 3rd world tyrant as a defender against "American imperialism" fuck them to.
Rather it comes from CNN or FOX news, we should all care about the truth above all. And don't just care about the facts that fit into your comfort zone have the courage to accept all the facts surrounding a given issue rather you like them or not. Remember all those women's marches addressing gender equality issues right after trump took office last year? CNN covered em quite a bit and that's fine with me the protesters had a lot of legitimate grievances both toward trump and with society as a whole. But CNN dropped the ball on an important fact that FOX pounced on. Did you know that one of the main organizers of the marches was a convicted palestinian terrorist (rasmea odeh) who was freed from an Israeli jail in a prisoner swap and later lied on her entry visa about her criminal record in order to get into the United States? She got busted last year and in a plea deal to avoid jail time in a federal prison she agreed to deportation.
If you care about America, then trump's unwillingness to accept the fact that russia fucked with our election should bother you every bit as much as Obama's inability to utter the words "radical islamic terror". But if you only have a problem with one and not the other, well then you're just a hypocrite not a patriot. You can't have it both ways on that matter.
But getting back to you trump supporters, I just don't get you people. How long can you people keep looking at yourselves in the mirror and telling yourselves that a lie is the truth? Rather it's petty shit like the crowd size at his inauguration ceremony or the accusation about Obama having wire tapped trump tower that he promised he'd provide proof of but never did I mean seriously where is your breaking point when it comes to your intelligence constantly being insulted? Remember "alternative facts"? I mean seriously WTF!? Are you capable at all of being at least somewhat objective when you look at and analyse what comes out of trump's mouth or on his twitter account or is it just easier for you to write off all the criticism of trump as simply just "left wing media spin"? What happened to critical thinking!? And it's not just my fellow Americans who are guilty of this, some of my friends in Israel are just as overly simplistic in their thinking just because trump is not Obama.


Yes, critical thinking. Like the kind that allows me to see at least a couple of bright spots in the trump administration despite my loathing for trump himself. Nikki Haley, who was not shy about her sharp criticism of trump during the election and probably still doesn't like him much on a personal level today never the less has been hitting it out the park as the United States Ambassador to the United Nazis, or just U.N. for short. The U.N. is a deeply flawed organization loaded with self interest agendas, hypocrites like you wouldn't believe and almost complete ineptitude and it's well past time we had an ambassador who called em out on all of that in plain language.
And if you're a trump supporter that read the original ROM series did you learn nothing from Bill Mantlo's writing? The dire wraiths didn't have twitter but they had their shape shifting powers and sorcery to distort the truth to others. Based on what you know about the ROM character just ask yourself, what would the greatest of the spaceknights think of president trump? Or Mantlo for that matter if he still had his health today? Let that sink into your brain for a while.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Always bet on black...Black Panther that is


   I'm going to give away one, just one spoiler because in some ways this was the coolest part of the film for me. The Black Panther opens up in Oakland California which is right here in The East Bay of the San Francisco Bay Area. Oh I can just imagine how audiences in theaters in Oakland must have reacted to that. And on a related side note the director of Black Panther (Ryan Coogler) was born in Oakland.
   So now that I got that out of the way how was the film? It wasn't great like Civil War but overall it was pretty good. We're treated to a lot of that Marvel cinematic universe humor we've become accustomed to along with the continued development of Chadwick Boseman's Black Panther which Civil War did such a great job of getting started. Also, a lot of good supporting characters that you actually get into fairly early on in the film. I liked how Black Panther featured so many strong black female characters with out it ever feeling like they were some kind of mandatory tokenism.


   Now all that being said it was kinda hard to see Michael B. Jordan (Killmonger) as a bad guy. I've had my eye on that actor for years now and he was superb in movies like Chronicle, Creed and Fruitvale Station. I'm so used to him playing a hero or some sort of sympathetic character as opposed to being a real dick of a villain but he certainly demonstrated his acting range here. Now make sure you keep your butt in your seat for the end credit scene even though it's a bit of a slog having to wait through the entire credits scroll. The end scene has the most significant Avengers tie-in moment and quite frankly the movie would have been incomplete with out it.
  Pretty sure trump isn't going to be in any rush to see this movie. Too many black folks in it, not to mention all those empowered female characters. But if he did manage to see it in between his FOX News binge watching schedule he would probably end up tweeting that Wakanda was just another shit hole country.


As I've said before, the vast majority of new ROM related fan art that turns up every month is amateurish looking crap as far as I'm concerned (especially when it comes to twitter) but once in a while something worth posting here comes along. Found this at some obscure site I'm not familiar with and unfortunately I couldn't find the artist so that I could accredit it accordingly. The biggest strengths of this piece are the way the dire wraiths are drawn and the over all colors they really pop. He or she did a fair job on ROM himself but making the neutrilizer bigger would have helped.

The Defenders 62 left click to enlarge
Here's a little random something from the tail end of the 70s which was basically the lead into the awesome 80s. This panel I believe is the only real moment of action with The Torpedo during the some what silly Defender For A Day story line.

Left click to enlarge
When I saw this I just had to post this here also this is pure political satire genius. Hopefully, you're someone who's watched The Rocky & Bullwinkle show and know the always conspiring russian characters Boris and Natashia. The Rocky & Bullwinkle show wasn't a Saturday morning cartoon like Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends or one of the ones that came on in the afternoon like The Transformers, G.I.Joe, Thundercats, Voltron, Robotech for example. I remember it being on early in the morning before school. If only the writers of The Rocky & Bullwinkle Show could see what was going on today with the russians.


And finally here we are with more of my photoshop trickery. I did this years ago but just posted it here for the Hell of it.

Just a couple of days I was at one of those dollar stores looking for some cheap snacks when I saw this little E.T. Lego set. The E.T. figurine in particular just gave me this on the spot rush of nostalgia. I loved this movie like so many other kids back then. And ya know what? I caught part of the movie on some channel a few months ago and I gotta say it doesn't hold up too bad even these days. I had a number of E.T. memorabilia items back in the day including a garbage can this is the only photo I have of it. Ofcourse you also see my old X-Wing ship and on the wall a mini Star Wars poster featuring The Millennium Falcon and some tie-fighters I wish I could remember where I got that from.


Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Holy shit is that Captain America in Hayward California!?

Highway 580 Hayward California
So all the stuff you see below this opening photo was stuff I was planning on posting along with a Black Panther movie review which I already have tickets to see on opening weekend. But when my buddy Sammy (fellow comic book/sci-fi fanboy) text this photo from earlier today while he was cruising down 580 I was like fuck it it's time for a new blog posting right now. According to Sammy this guy was really hauling ass but I betcha even a minor accident would have been a quick wake up call to this idiot that he's not a super soldier with an indestructible shield on his back. Among all the cities in the San Francisco metro area Hayward is certainly not one of the ones that you're likely to see some thing cool like this but once in a while you get lucky kinda like I did last fall when I saw the Batmobile at a down town vintage car show . . .
http://suicidesquadtaskforcex.blogspot.com/2017/09/black-power.html

Ya know it's funny, probably a third of the back issues I buy from discount boxes are of comics I had back in the 80s but some where along the way over the years lost or traded away. Sometimes I think it's worthwhile to pick something up again and give it a second look with a fresh pair of eyes.
One such issue is Avengers 253 which was kind of a cool issue aside from the ROM connection. In it, The Vision's conscience enters a number of global computer networks around the world in an ill conceived plan in order to take over the world and make it a better place. There's clearly some elements of TRON in that concept as well as the computer intelligence taking over the world narrative which have spawned a ton of sci-fi movies like The Forbin Project, The Terminator, I Robot or The Matrix.
For those of you who've read ROM 43 remember that The Living Computer Quasimodo had possessed ROM's armor but was driven out by the mind controlled Brandy Clark who was merged with the Starshine armor at the time. Now they never really explained after having been driven out what happened to Quasimodo his conscience represented as this ghost image just kinda disappears in the air and keep in mind all that shit happened at some kind of secret base in The Soviet Union (or call it Russia if you prefer but who gives a fuck same difference).

Avengers 253
Back in the mid 80s when I first had this issue I completely missed this. Despite the absence of a foot note (dumb ass writing over site) it's pretty obvious Quasimodo is making a reference to ROM 43 which I was able to confirm on the Quasimodo entry page in The Ultimate Marvel Universe Handbook (issue 10 Vol. 2).
Avengers 252
Oh and look at this clip art from the previous Avengers issue. Even though it was written in 1985 talk about no truer words ever spoken in the current political climate of this country. Chris Evans has done such a great job with the Captain America role it makes me want to see him run in 2020. Pretty sure unlike trump, Chris Evens wouldn't get an endorsement from that racist and anti-Semitic piece of shit david duke.


In case you didn't happen to have seen this before. Oh my goodness how could you not love the 80s? Poly bag sets, spinner racks, comics at your local liquor store and 7-Eleven not to mention none of this $2.99 and $3.99 cover price bullshit.


Also pretty cool in case you didn't happen to have seen this before. Now I know what some of you might be thinking right something along the lines of "hey wait a minute those are dire wraiths from IDW and you had that ROM in name only reboot".
Yes that's true, however the dire wraiths from Marvel were shape shifters as well so if we stretch our imaginations a bit one might say this is the original ROM busting up and banishing these fools. Anyways, I found this on deviant art and the guy who staged this has a bunch of other cool toy scenes based on comic book clip art. Especially cool if you're an 80s Transformers fan . . . 
https://urbn1nja.deviantart.com/gallery/


Ok it's back to more Star Wars stuff. I recently recovered this old passport (long story don't ask) I had as a kid I totally forgot about it. It was valid from 1978 to 1983. I'm guessing I was around 8 or 9 when I did this Empire Strikes Back doodle and clearly at that age you don't understand that it's not legal to be drawing fan art on federal documents.