Wednesday, May 15, 2024

X-Men '97 - Tolerance is Extinction

The three-part season finale of X-Men '97 races through several more thread from different X-Men storylines, offers more Marvel hero cameos (although none are present when the fate of the world is at stake), wraps up the Bastion (Theo James) storyline, sees humanity's actions nearly wipe out all life on Earth, and sets up the next season with the team separated across time and presumed dead. With Magneto (Matthew Waterson) freed, he uses his powers to shut down the Earth's magnetic field leaving the Earth in darkness and creates an asteroid home for any mutants who wish to leave the world that hates them.

This is WonderCon 2024 Best Cosplay Music Video

Alex Rider - The Shot

Picking up immediately from the previous episode's cliffhanger, we learn Alex (Otto Farrant) didn't shoot Mrs. Jones (Vicky McClure). The Department takes him into custody and then returns him home while making it appear that he succeeded but was arrested afterwards. Returning home, Alex gets a reunion with Jack (Ronke Adekoluejo), Kyra (Marli Siu), and Tom (Brenock O’Connor) catching them up on his adventures with SCORPIA, but his role in the affair is fare from over.

Transformers #8

Transformers #8 is most notable for the number of familiar faces introduced to the Energon Universe for the first time. In an issue that gives us a good look at what the Decepticons could be under Soundwave's leadership we get Astrotrain, who was found trapped on the unearthed Nemesis spaceship that brough the Decepticons to Earth, We also get the return of Jetfire (although only in plane form), as well as and appearances on Cybertron by both Ultra Magnus and one of my favorites in Shockwave.

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Dead Boy Detectives - The Case of the Devlin House

After getting multiple offers from the town's ghost population, Edwin (George Rexstrew), Charles (Jayden Revri), and Crystal (Kassius Nelson) decide to investigate a haunted house where a family (Hannah Bos, Christine Chatelain, Jason Deline, and Audrey Mallett) has been stuck in the loop of their murders since the 80s. The loop, and the struggle to find its trigger, offers an intriguing mystery and a nice mix of macabre humor and horror for the investigators (especially after Charles' recklessness gets him trapped in the loop as well). 

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

It's hard to imagine a more unexpected hit in 2000 than Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon but the film surpassed all expectations, and a mainstream movie-going audience which at that point was far less accepting of foreign films, becoming both a critical and box office smash. Adapted from the novel, the film centers around renowned Wudang swordsman Li Mu Bai (Chow Yun-Fat) and his longtime ally Shu Lien (Michelle Yeoh) as well as the governor's daughter Jen (Ziyi Zhang) who is secretly the apprentice of the villainous Jade Fox (Pei-Pei Cheng) and her love for desert bandit named Lo (Chang Chen).

SHAZAM! #11

Some challenges present themselves when Child Protective Services arrives to examine the house and make a ruling on the Vasquezes planning on adopting all of the kids. First, outside, the house is attacked by giant Man-Bat-ish creatures known as Jeepers Hybrids (who also reveal the Rock of Eternity is leaking magic into the world which sounds like it could become an ongoing issue). Second, the secret The Captain has been keeping from Billy is finally revealed.

Fallout - The Trap / The Radio

Setting up the season finale, "The Trap" and "The Radio" look both to the past and to the future. Flashbacks show us more of Cooper Howard (Walton Goggins) steering even stronger into his promotions for Vault-Tec, despite his discomfort at being their spokesman, in order to please his wife (Frances Turner). A conversation with a friend, his wife letting comments slip about the "good" vaults and why no dogs will be allowed, and a conversation with the woman who would become Lee Moldaver (Sarita Choudhury) force Cooper to begin questioning whether or not Vault-Tec is a good thing and even spying on his wife where he will eventually discover, to his horror, the lengths the company will go to in order to make their product a success.

Monday, May 13, 2024

The Batman & Scooby-Doo Mysteries #5

Believing the location might hold secrets to solve his condition, Batman and Mystery, Inc. join Kirk Langstrom to visit the mansion of Dr, Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The comic plays on the gang's previous adventure at the mansion in "Nowhere to Hyde" from Scooby Doo, Where Are You! The investigation into a cure is quickly sidetracked both by the discovery of Mr. Hyde (Helga in the costume from the original series) haunting the mansion to protect its secrets and Langstrom transforming into Man-Bat.

Will Trent - Why Is Jack's Arm Bleeding?

In an episode that deals with the murder of a young girl whose remains are found 13 years after her disappearance, "Why is Jack's Arm Bleeding?" also wraps up the flashbacks and hallucinations of Will's (Ramón Rodríguez) younger self as the new case has just enough similarities to shake loose some repressed memories and reveal a guilt Will has been carrying around with him for half of his life. The sequences have been effective over the first-half of the season, but won't mind them fading away. After a couple of red herrings in young men who fancied the victim, Will discovers the true motive and method of murder.

Zorro: Man of the Dead #4

Zorro: Man of the Dead concludes with Diego being rescued from certain death by the locals but his sister Rosa still a captive of El Rojo. With his sister captured, with the proof needed to bring in the DEA back in the hands of the cartel, and with limited use of his left arm, Diego admits defeat and plans to turn himself into El Rojo to try and save his sister and the other inhabitants of La Vega.

Friday, May 10, 2024

Doctor Who - Space Babies

After introducing us to the Fifteenth Doctor's (Ncuti Gatwa) new companion Ruby Sunday (Millie Gibson) on Christmas, the new series of Doctor Who kicks off with "Space Babies" in which The Doctor takes Ruby 150 million years into the past for a quick joke about chaos theory before jumping 19,000 years into the future and landing on a space station baby farm run by space babies who mistake the travelers for their missing parents. The only adult on the station is an accountant (Golda Rosheuvel) who has been hiding behind the scenes pretending to be a robotic nanny after the other crew left when the station was ordered to shut down.

The Mummy

Returning to theaters 25 years after its release, The Mummy is an odd bit of entertainment. When it was released you could refer to it as a poor man's Indiana Jones (of course, that was before the two lackluster attempts to revive that franchise in both Crystal Skull and Dial of Destiny). Part B-movie serial, part Evil Dead 2-style horror flick (never read the ancient evil book aloud!), and part wacky over-the-top comedy, it's hard to argue that The Mummy is a good film, in fact in many ways it's certainly not, but that doesn't mean it can't provide a good time proving that charm can get you an awful long way.

Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Blood Hunt #1

Spinning out of the peripheries of Moon Knight comes The Structure, a vampire cult who have used dark magic to detonate Darkforce wielders all over the globe and use them as portals to pour in darkness from the outer dimension blocking out the sun and allowing vampires to storm the world while their super-powered number known as the Bloodcoven take down the Avengers. The revelation of who is behind the coordinated attacks is held back until the end of the issue as Doctor Strange discovers he, the Avengers, and the world have been betrayed by a former friend.

The Veil - The Camp

There's an interesting idea at the heart of The Veil that might make for a tense 100-minute thriller. I have some doubts on whether or not it can be stretched over six hours, however. The first episode is mainly setup as MI6 Agent Imogen Salter (Elisabeth Moss) extracts Adilah El Idrissi (Yumna Marwan) from a refugee camp before she can be killed by those in the camp who have discovered she worked with ISIS. The premise of the show involves Imogene working the asset on the road while attempting to extract a vital piece of data without giving too much away. The setup isn't half bad, foreshadowing issues MI6 may have with a trigger-happy American (Josh Charles) who isn't too happy with the current situation.

NCIS: Hawai'i - Divided We Conquer

Setting a record for the shortest NCIS spin-off ever (there's a challenge for you NCIS: Sydney), NCIS: Hawai'i kicks off its series finale with Dr. Analisa Cruz (Rachel Marsh) getting away with the bioweapon, NCIS: Elite dead, and Hanna (LL Cool J) getting infected by Compound-X. Tennant (Vanessa Lachey), Jesse (Noah Mills), and Dr. Chase (Seana Kofoed) work on keeping Hanna alive while Kai (Alex Tarrant), Lucy (Yasmine Al-Bustami), Ernie (Jason Antoon), and Whistler (Tori Anderson) work to track the missing terrorists (who return to Hawaii) and the Compound-X.

Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Dead Boy Detectives - The Case of the Dandelion Shrine

The second episode of the series provides a reason for the Dead Boy Detectives to remain in town, with the Cat King's (Lukas Gage) spell forcing Edwin (George Rexstrew) to remain, as well as provide a new mystery which will bring Crystal's (Kassius Nelson) neighbor into the fold. Niko's (Yuyu Kitamura) explosion of color, seen in the previous episode, is explained by parasitic Sprites () in habiting her body. Together, Edwin, , and Crystal manage to get the meddlesome duo out of Niko without killing her. However, the near death experience does allow her to see the boys as well.

Supercop

Supercop, also known as Police Story 3: Supercop and Jackie Chan's Supercop, is the third film of the Police Story franchise featuring Jackie Chan as "Kevin" Chan Ka-Kui who goes undercover alongside Michelle Yeoh to break up a drug smuggling ring. The film is most notable for its martial art fight sequence and some of the most memorable stunts for its time period as Kevin works to befriend one of the gang's henchmen (Wah Yuen). Although things are initially successful, Kevin's girlfriend (Maggie Cheung) accidentally breaks his cover leading to her kidnapping and the film's final action sequence.

Space Ghost #1

Bringing the characters from the short-run 60s cartoon into the present, Space Ghost #1 gives the first meeting between the vigilante space cop Space Ghost and the young siblings Jace and Jan whose home is attacked, and whose father is killed, by space pirates whose numbers include fan-favorite Brak (albeit without his nasally charm). Reimagined with a more serious tone than the original series, Space Ghost gets a bit of the early days Batman treatment jumping out of the shadows with the evil-doers surprised that he actually exists and not sure what to make of him.

Monday, May 6, 2024

Fallout - The Past

Life in Vault 33 and vault history are a big part of the aptly titled "The Past." Betty (Leslie Uggams) wins the overseer election leading Norm (Moises Arias) further down a rabbit hole after he discovers every overseer ever elected came from Vault 31 and whatever tragedy happened in Vault 32 seems to point to that direction as well. The division of the Vault 33 inhabitants leads some to relocated to the refurbished 32 (which has been sanitized completely from the shit show that Norm observed). 

Vengeance of the Moon Knight #5

As 8-Ball takes his turn on Dr. Andrea Sterman‘s couch discussing the loss of Moon Knight (and providing insight on how super-villains viewed Moon Knight), Tigra and Hunter’s Moon continue their fight against the unmasked the Shroud who reveals the reason to why he assumed Marc Spector's alter-ego (and provides the opportunity for Tigra to explain why his choice was so wrong).

Alex Rider - Target

After having his world rocked by a revelation about how his father died, Alex (Otto Farrant) is faced with some hard choices about who to trust and what to believe. "Target" offers a couple of sequences highlighting this struggle. In the first Alex arranges a short rendezvous with Jack (Ronke Adekoluejo) offering an chance for a preemptive apology for the path the Widow (Sofia Helin) has put him on to become, what she claims, is the true Alex Rider.. The second, of course, is the end of the episode where Alex comes face to face with The Department agent who ordered the death of his father. Both literally and figuratively, the episode ends with a bang.

Saturday, May 4, 2024

Star Wars Day 2024 Jedi Pack

Also check out Pack 1, Pack 2, Pack 3, Pack 4, Pack 5, Pack 6, Pack 7, Pack 8, Pack 9, Pack 10, Pack 11, Pack 12, Pack 13, Pack 14, Pack 15, Pack 16, Pack 17, Pack 18, Pack 19, Pack 20, Pack 21, Pack 22, Star Wars Day 2019 Pack, Revenge of the Fifth Pack, Revenge of the Fifth 2022 Pack, Star Wars Day 2024 Slave Leia Pack, and the Star Wars Disney Princess Pack.

Tales of the Empire - The Path of Fear

The first episode of the animated Tales of the Empire series provides an origin for Morgan Elsbeth (Diana Lee Inosanto) last seen in Disney+'s Ahsoka series. We witness the slaughter of Morgan's tribe by the Separatist Droid Army and the death of her mother to General Grievous (Matthew Wood). Given shelter by the Mountain Clan, the Nightsister chooses against a new path and instead to arm herself and other young witches bringing them into the path of the army.

Star Wars Day 2024 Slave Leia Awesome Pack

Also check out Pack 1, Pack 2, Pack 3, Pack 4, Pack 5, Pack 6, Pack 7, Pack 8, Pack 9, Pack 10, Pack 11, Pack 12, Pack 13, Pack 14, Pack 15, Pack 16, Pack 17, Pack 18, Pack 19, Pack 20, Pack 21, Pack 22, Star Wars Day 2019 Pack, Revenge of the Fifth Pack, Revenge of the Fifth 2022 Pack, and the Star Wars Disney Princess Pack.

Star Wars: The Bad Batch - Flash Strike / The Cavalry Has Arrived

As expected, Star Wars: The Bad Batch ends in predictable fashion. We get the infiltration of an Imperial base (again) and the escape from an Imperial base (again). And, as expected, the squad manage to extract Omega (Michelle Ang) without a single casualty on their side. The other children are also rescued with the help of Emerie Karr (Keisha Castle-Hughes) who it seems has finally seen enough of the Empire's testing on children. The final episode is also notable for an unnecessary epilogue with an older Omega set out to join the Rebellion that feels tacked on when the shot of the Bad Batch together on Pabu under the weeping maya tree seems a far more natural ending.

Happy May the Fourth, Star Wars Fans

Friday, May 3, 2024

The Fall Guy

The biggest strength of The Fall Guy, loosely inspired by the 80s television show, is its stars. Ryan Gosling as stuntman Colt Seavers coming back from a failed stunt to work with his former girlfriend Jody (Emily Blunt) on her first big movie is the kind of wacky dumb fun you would expect. Once arriving in town, things don't go smoothly for Colt who is sent to find the film's missing star (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) by the producer (Hannah Waddingham) who dragged Colt out of retirement. This puts our stuntman in danger and also keeps him away from the woman he desperately wants to win back.

If the chemistry between the stars is The Fall Guy's greatest strength, the script by Drew Pearce is its biggest weakness. There's no reason for Colt to keep the truth about what he's up to from Jody (especially as it's her career on the line). And paring the two more over the course of the film would help the uneven highs and lows of the script that stumbles a bit between outrageous stunts.

Thursday, May 2, 2024

Will Trent - Have You Never Been to a Wedding?

With Faith's (Iantha Richardson) boyfriend out of town, Will (Ramón Rodríguez) accompanies his partner and her son (Deion Smith) to a wedding that quickly goes to hell when armed robbers take everyone hostage. The episode allows Faith to play a bit of John McClane while Will attempts to deescalate the situation and talk some sense into the robbers which becomes harder to do once they turn on each other. Eventually Angie (Erika Christensen) and Ormewood (Jake McLaughlin) arrive with the cavalry taking down the remaining thieves.

NCIS: Hawai'i - Spill the Tea

After teasing us with their existence for much of the season, "Spill the Tea" introduces us to NCIS: Elite. Let's just say I'm not impressed. Kai (Alex Tarrant), Jesse (Noah Mills), and Lucy (Yasmine Al-Bustami), who returns to steal the best moments of the episode, are read into the the squad's mission when their star witness is poisoned in their secret facility (basically failing their single objective of keeping him alive). We get some, mostly good-natured, competition between the two squads as NCIS: Hawai'i identifies the method in which Alexi Volkoff (David Meunier) was poisoned and then track down the team who committed the crime.

Usagi Yojimbo: The Crow #1

Miyamoto Usagi and Yukichi descend from the mountains following their adventures in Ice and Snow to come across a man being attacked by four others. Offering their assistance, the pair meet Jimmu and his trained crow Yatagarasu (who they witness help repel one of the attackers). Parting ways, our wandering ronin make their way to a nearby town to discover they may have intervened on the wrong side.

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Delicious in Dungeon - Dryad/Cockatrice

After an episode devoted entirely to the other party which continues to tease an eventual confrontation between them and our adventurers, "Dryad/Cockatrice" catches back with our heroes trapped in the lower dungeons which the Dungeon Mage is shifting and rebuilding keeping them from escaping. We get two monster sightings in the party's wanderings in the Dryad and the Cockatrice, both of which provide their own challenges but end up on the dinner table (with the Dryads especially making for some interesting cuisine). The episode is also notable for Marcille (Emily Rudd) beginning to teach Laios (Damien C. Haas) magic in hopes he can help keep them alive in the trials to come. Her teaching is immediately put to the test when Marcille is petrified by the Cockatrice.

Megacon Live Spring 2024 Cosplay Showcase (Part 2)

Moon Knight - The Complete First Season

The complete First Season of Disney+'s Moon Knight is included in this two-disc Collector's Edition 4K Steelbook. The season introduces mercenary Marc Spector and mild mannered Steven Grant (Oscar Isaac) and their alter-ego as the avatar of the Khonshu (F. Murray Abraham) defending the travelers of the night.

Fallout - The Head / The Ghouls

"The Head" and "The Ghouls" offer us the short-term forced team-up of the Ghoul (Walton Goggins) and Lucy (Ella Purnell) who he tracks down but only after she's lost the scientist's head to a water beast. The two together is the highlight of the two episodes, which do take a slight dip here compared to the rest of the season. We also get a pairing for Maximus (Aaron Moten) who, while still pretending to be Titus, is given a new squire in Thaddeus (Johnny Pemberton) who he will need to keep his identity secret from. On the trail of Lucy, the pair find the same water beast, defeating it and claiming the head, perhaps giving Maximus a bit too much confidence he can continue to pull of this rouse.