Sunday, November 29, 2015

Local Comic Shop Day Has Proven to Be Interesting For Both the Right Reasons and One Wrong One

What Is This Day You Speak Of?
First off, Local Comic Shop Day, or LCSD, is not to be confused with Free Comic Book Day, or FCBD. I've heard of that happening and the occurrence of folk showing up to stores expecting free comics and then being disappointed probably very well happened. No, you see, LCSD is organized by the people from a comic-retailer group known as ComicsPro (think of it as being kind of like a union for comic stores, with all the love and hate unions get coming with that). Also, this was the first year it occurred, so that's neat too.

Local Comic Shop Day exists as a kind of riff on Record Store Day, it seems. The idea was stores could pay 50 dollars to ComicsPro for the right to take part (ten smackers if they were a member of the organization), and then could buy a certain number of cool limited edition hardcovers, variant-cover comics, and so forth to sell and promote their store with and get some profit. Then, of course people come in to buy the limited items and in theory other stuff too--kind of like Free Comic Book Day but instead of free comics you instead have a variety of rare neat stuff to browse and buy. This is undoubtedly a fun idea, and something I like as even if I am not too big on variant covers I would happily buy one that looked cool far a comic I haven't read yet, or a snazzy hardcover for a book I want to check out.
The cool Black Mask box set of stuff.
That's the main thrust behind the day too, you get folk coming to the store who want to check out the limited-availability wares, and your shop can promote it a bit or a lot--whatever degree it desires. From what I've said you probably already see some ways this works well and is interesting for the right well as where one thing in particular can go a bit wrong and be interesting for what is arguably the wrong reason.

The Right Reasons
It supports a group of comic retailers who despite occasional criticism do really seem to help lend a voice to retailers.
There are mixed opinions on ComicsPro, but from what I've seen they do a nice deal of good as opposed to much of any bad so I like that. If giving them 50 dollars to help support the organization allows you to acquire some cool comic stuff your store can then sell and also make a nice profit on is the deal, I can get behind that.

Even if the publishing plan for "DKIII" is odd, that's a cool cover.
Cool and special stuff!
We all like that feeling of getting something exclusive or special. Unique comics can look cool, give us that warm and fuzzy feeling, and the fact that someone can get something, "Rare," may result in them buying it, reading it, loving it, and then continuing to buy future issues that aren't even hard-to-find, just fun.

Store promotion and profit.
A comic store can have a special sale with LCSD and promote it a bunch, or just simply put out the wares and get a bit of a profit when the items sell--and they will almost assuredly all sell within the day they are available as they're limited-edition rare stuff that the crowd hankers for, as discussed in the above point. It helps stores draw a bit more of a profit.

The Wrong Reason
If you didn't pick this up Saturday don't expect to find it for a fair price.
Speculators AKA this is why we can't have nice things.
Imagine, you want to go and get one of these cool special comics or hardcovers. You stop by your shop maybe an hour or two after its opened and one guy apparently came by when the store opened to buy everything and sell it online. You're probably mad and also were unaware that Local Comic Shop Day basically turned into a huge speculation-fest for some comic-fans, as the general rarity of comics with stuff like copies of the 1st issue of "All-New Wolverine" with a 1-in-500 cover brought out the comic-flippers in droves. Just check, "Local Comic Shop Day," on eBay and you can see there's some crazy stuff going on with comics that cost $2.99 or $3.99 suddenly being sold for at least twenty smackers and the rarer variant covers or hardcovers going for a Benjamin (one hundred dollars for my non-U.S. readers) or two.

One of the many comic-sites I read, Comics Heating Up, talks a lot about comic speculation and considering its own readers often buy comics to then sell, it is interesting how even they express some disgust in the comments-section of this post about LCSD when it comes to how some people were just snatching up as much stuff as they could to then attempt and flip for a profit. Some stores maybe took it too far in their effort to prevent speculation by making people buy a certain amount of other stuff before being allowed to by anything related to LCSD, or limiting people to barely anything, but clearly speculation for LCSD ran a bit rampant, and I find it a bit unfair stores were able to derive a small profit from buying and selling the books while Mr. Speculator-Jerk can swing by, buy it all up, and then try and sell everything at 5X the price.

A Fun Day!
Even if rampant speculation can throw a wrench in things, I still like the idea behind Local Comic Shop Day and was excited to stop by my store on Saturday to pick-up some cool stuff I had saved-up for/was careful to not spend all of on Black Friday. I would hope its inaugural year is judged to be enough of a success by ComicsPro and the retailers who took part that it continues to occur.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Is Black Friday on a Thursday Going Too Far?

The Edge
My friends, we are on a precipice. I find we are teetering on a metaphorical cliff when it comes to Black Friday and the question of if it is a great idea or terrible one to have shopping start on Thanksgiving Day. Some people have stepped back from the edge of endorsing such an idea, with a number of stores waiting until the next morning or at least Midnight to officially open to shoppers.

Then we have the companies about to fall into the pit of consumer-madness with Target and Walmart opening at 6PM on Thursday, and Best Buy going a tad further with the doors unlocking at 5PM. Meanwhile, Big Lots has just dived into the chasm whilst screaming ,"Fuck it!" and is opening at 7AM on Thanksgiving Day because what employee wouldn't want to spend a holiday about family helping direct strangers to whatever aisle they're searching for?
7AM on Thanksgiving? Now that's just going way too far.
Yes, this is a dangerous position we find ourselves in, and I'm afraid that against my better judgement I too am taking the leap into mass-consumerism and focusing on getting a great deal on commodities, but on the other hand, I like my cheap stuff God-dammit!

How Did We Get Here?
How exactly did we get here? I mean, the answer is obvious that corporate greed and a desire to squeeze as much money out of consumers as possible put us here as the unofficial holiday that is Black Friday can only rake in so much cash within 24 hours (so folk figured expanding it a bit couldn't hurt). What I mean is how did we as shoppers get to the point mentally where we were okay with stores opening in the evening on Thanksgiving day and while there are some who still protest it, plenty of folk--including even yours truly--will go to Target so that they can examine all the hot deals?

 I can't say when exactly the shift occurred, but I like that I still have enough humanity to not be a total shop-bot and realize that having your store open all day Thursday is more awful than it is productive. Stores requiring employees to work Thursday evening still makes me a bit sad, but the urge to go out and just experience the rush of Black Friday (even on a Thursday) and all its zaniness is a strong siren's song...and fighting it's request for us to jump off the cliff of consumerism is just so, so difficult.
I think their protest has failed if it actually does make me want to buy more stuff.
I suppose the only solution we as the people who go to shopping malls and stores have is to look deep inside, ask ourselves what time we think is okay to begin Black Friday shopping, and proceed from there. If you feel waiting until it is officially Friday at midnight is the proper time, go for it. Should you be someone who likes to go pick-over what's left on Saturday, that's fine too. If you even want to go shopping a bit in the evening Thursday that is your call as long as you feel comfortable as a human being doing so. I have sympathy for those who work retail and have to deal with this madness, so keep them in mind too.

Overall, my main message is that having Black Friday on a Thursday is going too far if you believe it is, and isn't going too far if you feel it's fine. It is a personal decision. So go ahead and jump off the consumer-cliff or back far away from it, it's completely your option. Regardless of what you do I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and a safe Black Friday/Thursday/whatever day they choose to shop.

Friday, November 20, 2015

The Bizzaare Musical Form of Travi$ Scott's "Antidote" Results in Some Intriguing Surrealism

More Than Its Lyrics
Should you just sit and read the lyrics for, "Antidote," by music artist Travi$ Scott you might simply at first think, "Oh great, yet another song about smoking weed, taking pills, and otherwise doing a lot of drugs." However, this song is a bit more than it at first seems. The music video is right below but I would recommend actually not watching it and instead letting your own imagery float through your head as you absorb the sounds:

First off, just study the structure of the song. Compared to others that follow a usual formula along the lines of verse-chorus-verse-chorus-(sometimes) a bridge-chorus-song ends this one already is a bit bizarre. It opens with the chorus (not too odd, but a little less common), and then proceeds to have a verse and shift back into the chorus. Then the music begins sounding a little more disjointed and ethereal, almost as if the metaphorical (and literal) drugs have kicked in and the and listener is joining Scott on a trip. The song suddenly has a bridge, a verse that is almost more of a bridge, another bridge, and then after seeming like it'll just forever float about in space the beats-per-minute suddenly speed-up a tad and we kick into a fast-worded verse before ending on the chorus once more.
I used to greatly enjoy reading Fader. I should give it a look again sometime.
It really is like Scott is having the listener experience a form musical inebriation, from when the sound gets all floaty and disjointed to the sudden, "Crash," of the high ending and the beats getting faster and more aggressive. Sure, the lyrics throughout most of the song may not be that impressive, but the strange distortions of Scott's voice, broken-sounding instruments, and general auto-tuned weirdness create a song that is a sonic delight. I tip my hat to Travi$ Scott and his producers.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Subscription Box Review Time--Geek Fuel November 2015!

What Are Subscription Boxes?
This site is extremely useful for learning about Subscription Boxes.
For those of you who don't know what a subscription box is, it is basically just what it sounds like! A box that comes monthly (sometimes more or less often) which you subscribe to. There are many kinds of subscription boxes, from those that have beauty products, to healthy foods, wine, and the ones that particularly interest me, the "Geek," boxes. Full of items that appeal to someone nerdy such as myself, I thought I would look into subscription boxes not realizing so many existed! After spending a lot of time exploring my options--the website, "My Subscription Addiction," was a big help--I picked some to try out and will post reviews of them now-and-then when they arrive in the mail. The first one I'm going to review in my new debut segment is the November 2015 box from Geek Fuel. It is a good box to start with as I was quite impressed with what came!

Geek Fuel Goodies!
Geek Fuel is a slightly newer subscription box compared to other ones on the market, but I've heard a lot of good things about them. Unlike some subscription boxes they choose not to have a theme with their monthly boxes, instead just having an assortment of cool stuff. I know some people dislike when a box lacks a theme but my thinking is it can actually help because being stuck with a certain topic can constrain options--again, my opinion. That said, there was definitely some stuff that tied together this month, with video-games playing a pretty big role. Let's review...

Pac-Man Salt and Pepper Shakers
I wanted to mention this one first as it was my absolute favorite item. As a big video-gamer who remembers when arcades were more common, I have fond memories of wasting away the hours (and quarters) playing stuff like Galaga and Pac-Man. Also, the red ghost AKA Blinky is my favorite of them all, so that just helps make this even better!

Fallout-themed "War Never Changes Poster"
First off, that isn't a picture I snapped, it is found at this link courtesy of the earlier-mentioned, "My Subscription Addiction," as I was having trouble getting it to stay flat/I was too lazy to get it to stay put. I really like this poster because it has a snazzy look reminiscent of the old propaganda ones (which is intentional) and is on a nice heavy paper-stock. This isn't one of those super-thin papers that feel like they could rip easily if you barely flicked the poster.

Geek Fuel Magazine
I realize I didn't mention that each box comes with a little magazine. There isn't anything too wild in it, just a mixture of discussion about stuff that's contained in the box (or relates to it), what could be in future boxes, etc. Still, its a nice touch and gives off the appearance that your box was assembled by people who really do care about geek-stuff.

Fallout 4 Security Key Card
This actually is an entry-code of sorts for a, "Fallout 4," promotion being done by Geek Fuel. If you have the correct code on the back of the ID you'll win a a Playstation 4 and a bunch of Fallout swag, and even if you don't win you can enter a promotion to get an XBox one. As someone who is open about his preference for the PS4 it did make me giggle a little that an Xbox One is a runner-up item. Oh, and I didn't win but still find the keycard snazzy enough I'll keep it as a cute decoration. Well, if I can find where I put it; this pic is again thanks to MSA.

Hunger Games "Mockingjay" stickers.
I've never read a "Hunger Games" book or watched one of the movies so this does nothing for me. Still, I imagine fans of the series would be excited to get these.

"Assemble the Resistance" T-Shirt
One thing I like about Geek Fuel is that every month the box comes with a shirt. I think that is pretty cool. Now, the unfortunate thing is that this shirt didn't really appeal to me. I can't say why exactly, as I enjoy the movie it is obviously referencing (Star Wars), and the idea of it being a toy ship is cute. I guess the fact they kind of tip-toe around directly naming "Star Wars" and instead are just making the inspiration obvious bugs me. I understand why they had to do so, as with an official Star Wars subscription box now in existence I doubt Disney would license the rights to it too eagerly for their competition. Still, this was probably the item I felt the most let-down by as I was excited to get a wearable item, and then got this shirt.

How Games are Made Mini-Book/Defense Grid 2
Okay, this is pretty cool. One of the creators of the game, "Defense Grid 2," wrote a book about their time working on the game's creation and Geek Fuel has provided a mini-book of some of the most interesting parts. The thing that makes this especially neat however is that it comes with a STEAM code for the full version of the game! It is snazzy to think I can read about how a game was made and then play that very same game. It is apparently a tower-defense-styled title, which aren't my absolute favorite, but still generally enjoyable and worth at least trying out.

Ghostbusters Playing Cards
I like the Ghostbusters movies but am not a huge fan. I do, however, know someone who is. This therefore will serve as a great, "stocking-stuffer," for them come the holidays.

Overall Thoughts
I was pretty impressed with my first-ever Geek Fuel box and my wife (Samii) sat by my side as I opened it up thought it was pretty neat too. She agreed with me that the Pac-Man salt and pepper shakers were awesome and that the shirt was a bit disappointing. Overall I was quite pleased, and Samii agreed it was some good stuff. I'm thinking I am for sure going to continue getting Geek Fuel boxes and look forward to what comes in December! Considering how I enjoyed most things I can easily rate this a great...
4 out of 5 stars.

You can find Geek Fuel at their website here should you wish to learn more or subscribe!

Note: I emailed Geek Fuel as press and was supplied with a discount code for my first box that took off 10 dollars of the usual $23.90 monthly price. However, I received no further compensation for my review. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

"Wit's End" Succeeds Thanks to its Characterization that is Both Humorous and Heartfelt--A Comic Review

A Read That Rewards Patience
Written and illustrated by Allison Bannister, "Wit's End" is a comic that can be found online at her website here, and which currently just started a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for a printed edition. I met Ms. Bannister at the recent Project: Comic-Con and when she mentioned her comic, "Wit's End," I expressed interest in obtaining a copy for review, if possible. She was kind enough to supply me with a digital copy of what will be the printed book. So, I have read it, and I enjoyed it a great deal!

"Wit's End" starts out seeming like a simple story set in a vaguely-fantastic realm which features generic characters. You have the overwhelmed new-guy scribe (nicknamed, much to his chargrin, Scribbulous), the recently-given-power Queen named Francis who comes off as being air-headed and thinking she's more important and wise than she is. There is also her best friend, Edward, a man who tells awful jokes, Theodorus, the local psuedo-Knight who obviously has a huge crush on Francis, and Lucy, the seemingly homicidal maid. It all sounds pretty two-dimensional and I'll admit I at first thought it was, but then something interesting happened as I read through these five chapters that make up the book: The characters revealed themselves to be pretty well-developed individuals with their own doubts and insecurities.

Scribbulous who at first seemed panicky shows himself as someone capable of handling emergencies quite well, Francis shows that she actually is quite aware of the feelings of others around her, but simply acts like she doesn't see it because its too painful to admit she might not actually feel the same way about Theodorus as he does about her. Theodorus appears to be the most well-adjusted of everyone, but clearly has his own severe self-doubts, we learn Lucy doesn't actually want to hurt anyone but is considering some extreme lengths in an effort to finally feel she's made her mother proud and Edward...well, Edward is actually just a pretty happy-go-lucky guy.

This makes things sound really dramatic, and the book actually does have a lot of humor, it just is impressive that something which starts out seeming like a simple bunch of silly adventures featuring some bland characters goes on to reveal itself to be a really deep meditation on the dangerous things people will do (both physically and emotionally) in an effort to feel love--whether that is Franics trying to feel the love for Theodorus she sees he feels for her, Lucy getting the love and attention she wants from a mother who has sent her away, or Edward finding someone who appreciates his awful jokes.
Oh Edward, you''ll find someone who likes your humor someday.
Bannister's artwork has a light and cartoony look, which helps the humor work especially well and facilitates readers in being that much more surprised when things get serious and deep. The colors pop off the page nicely, with the landscape being more darker tones and fantastical effects having a bright white (such as when Theodorus uses his teleportation ability) or a purple glow when a dangerous magic gives someone strange powers later in the story.

"Wit's End," is a comic that--as I stated in the title of this post--is both humorous and heartfelt. This balancing of emotions as well as the enjoyable artwork results in a book that succeeds thanks to its rewarding readers who are patient enough to keep reading past their initial impressions of characters and watch as the comic really delves into exploring what makes these people, "Tick," as it were. I highly enjoyed the comic and would recommend you check out the Kickstarter campaign here.
5 out of 5 stars.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Frontier #10 Is An Enjoyable Comic

I discussed the comic series "Thickness" before, put out by publisher Youth in Decline. I chatted with the company more than a year ago, and suppose I must have been on a press list somewhere as they just recently mailed me a copy of the 10th and latest issue of "Frontier", which is an anthology series of sorts in that each issue has a new creator featured with a unique story. The newest release has the yarn, "Sensitive Property," by the immensely talented Michael Deforge.

The story itself isn't that remarkable, actually. This is especially surprising considering some the surreal stories Deforge has told in his comics. That said, the artwork is delightfully strange and weird, taking a story that sounds normal at first glance and making it something extra odd. Basically, this comic is about a real estate consultant who has done some extreme and radical things before and now exists to serve as an agent provocateur who infiltrates neighborhoods that get bought out by the real estate company.
Her job is to then act like she is a part of groups protesting the real estate agency and either make the mellow ones more extreme so the moderate members leave and it falls apart, or take the extreme ones and shift their focus onto all, "The enemies," so that the group eventually grows overwhelmed and falls apart (as you can tell, the point is in the end to dissolve the groups and let the real estate company win).

It's the kind of story you've heard before, just tweaked a bit to be about a real estate company as opposed to a governmental regime, animal rights organization, etc. The thing that makes all this interesting however is that Deforge is unquestionably a genius illustrator and makes even something as simple as a character walking down the street look amazing. Observe:

Through Deforge's superb artwork we take a story that would be average and elevate to the level of genius resulting in what is a pretty enjoyable comic. Were this just illustrated in a more simple manner things could be a bit dull, but Deforge is a master of the comic-craft and thanks to his skills something pretty cool is created.

Should you be a fan of Deforge this is a must-read, and if you enjoy wildly good artwork this is, again, worth giving a once-over. Do note that if you dislike Deforge's work this won't do anything to change your mind, but who dislikes his crazy-good stuff? I feel I can easily rate this as being...
4 out of 5 stars.

You can find the 10th issue of "Frontier" on sale at Youth in Decline's website here.

Please Note: A copy of "Frontier" #10 was provided for the purpose of review. At least, I assume it was. It really did just kind of show up in the mail with a note about the comic's subject matter and other works coming out from Youth in Decline in the future.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Mulling Over "Fallout 4" and if I Should Wait to Play It

Everyone is talking about, "Fallout 4." The consensus is mostly positive, but I do hear plenty of talk about bugs. I'm pretty sure that considering how, "Fallout 3," is one of my favorite games ever I will be a fan of this entry in the series, but my past experiences with bugs have me worried. Plus, even though it just came out I wonder if any deals will occur for the game as Black Friday approaches (although Target's current buy 2 get one free game deal does include, "Fallout 4,") and occurs.

I'll probably scoop the game up soon, I am quite eager to delve into the latest Bethesda-developed title, even if a few game-breaking bugs might occur. I'll just be sure to save often, that much can't be denied.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Wonder Woman Volume 7: War-Torn is Passably Entertaining, But Little Else

Reading the Woman of Wonder
I discussed meeting Meredith Finch at Project: Comic-Con and got a comic signed by her. I figured it made sense to read the volume of story that the comic took place over, so I picked-up Finch's debut arc on Wonder Woman that occured after Azzarello's magnum-opus of a storyline--with Finch's entry being titled, "War-Torn." With perfectly reasonable art provided by her husband, David Finch, Meredith's arc on this (as well as an annual she wrote and someone else illustrated), this is basically a comic that is better than mediocre, but which doesn't have much else going for it.

Good Enough Isn't Good Enough
Swamp Thing shows up briefly.
That's kind of cool.
"Good Enough," is how I would describe this comic--that or the word, "Average." It balances out Wonder Woman's time with the Justice League as well as on her island decently, the plot moves along at a fairly good pace, and certain character's motivations are confusing but other's make sense. Wonder Woman at times comes off as out-of-character in her brutality, but other characters do comment on this and she is the reasonable Diana readers know and love at other points. It is all fine, but were I to have paid for this book (thank you again, local library!) I would be pretty let down, as in this era of comic-prices increasing, something just being average and, "Good Enough," really isn't enough.

We have a flagship character like Wonder Woman and the plot just basically has her bounce around between fighting an evil force, chatting with the League, dealing with traitorous forces on her island, but nothing especially exciting or interesting happens until near the end of this book where the annual sheds some more light on why a certain character acted in the evil manner they did (something which the main issues of the comic don't touch upon and which makes the character just look terrible for hte sake of her being a bad-guy. Also, fan-favorite Donna Troy pops-up but is completely unrecognizable from her character that existed before the, "New 52," and seems to be inserted into the comic more to piss fans off than make them pleased. Truly head-scratching.

I really don't get why they bring Donna Troy into this story.
I've seen some people discussing absolutely hating this comic, and I have to admit I don't quite understand that. There isn't anything to really hate here (unless you're a scorned Donna Troy fan), just as there isn't much to recommend. It's all just "perfectly" average.
2.5 out of 5 stars.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

J. Cole's "No Role Modelz" Tries to Balance Precariously on the Line Between Making A Statement and Sexism, Sadly Trips and Falls

I often bemoan not liking much of today's rap music, but if we're being honest there is a good assortment of artists I find existing somewhere in the spectrum of bearable-to-pretty-good. J. Cole is one artist who I find on his songs seems so close to getting deep and making a statement ,but then kind of fumbles and ends up making something that hints at being amazing, but instead is just moderately good.

"No Role Modelz," can stand as an example of this, with an attention-demanding grouping of horns playing over a delightful beat that joins some stellar verses...mixed with ones that aren't. Some lines are great, others sound like they are trying to make a statement, but instead come off more as being kind of sexist than anything else. 
Aaliyah, you are still missed as much as ever.
"No Role Modelz," is basically Cole lamenting how there aren't enough good women out there, with it seeming instead like society is saturated with, "Reality hoes," or women who are shallow but whom he still kind of likes because, "The pussy deep." Cole names a variety of famous females he wishes he could have met or dated, and then complains about women who can barely read and only are attracted to him because he can rap.

There is a subject with some real meat on its bones here talking about how many famous females who could serve as an inspiration to younger women today have passed, and we are left with reality-television, "Celebrities," such as your Kim Kardashians, Paris Hiltons and such who impart a terrible message that it makes little sense to put effort into learning or working...but instead of delving into that Cole just basically comes of as kind-of sexist decrying all these women but following-up his insults with a, "But I'll still fuck you, just don't expect me to call the next day."
How and why are you so famous?
It is irritating because there are even some absolutely killer verses in this song that provide a glimpse of what sort of greatness we could get, verses such as, "I want a real love, dark skinned Aunt Viv love/That Jada and that Will love," which is a genius allusion to Aunt Vivan on, "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air," a show that of course featured Will Smith who Cole then mentions in the second line of his verse (plus there is that Uncle Phil shout-out at the start to the actor who played him--James Avery--whom passed)It is just an amazing two lines, putting together a fictional show and the real person from it in a clever blend of factual and fictional romance.

Cole also drops verses about how he realizes he calls women, "Bitches," much more, "Heavily," and jokes about being a B-list celebrity before even hinting at some political humor with an old George W. Bush quote where the former President fumbles around trying to say an old phrase about not getting fooled twice.
Mr. Smith and Ms. Pinkett-Smith
These are some incredible pieces of the song, and they sadly get undermined with the kind of bland sexist raps anyone could do discussing how a woman rubs his feet so well he'll dump his other girlfriend, how he brings, "5 or 6 hoes," back to his house to have sex with and then show the door, and so forth.

I almost prefer a song that lacks any sparks of amazing innovation because when you listen to a jam like this you get kind of depressed seeing these diamonds shimmering in the rough of an otherwise standard, "These hoes ain't loyal but I'll still have sex with them," song. Oh well, regardless of the mixture of superb and subpar lyrics the instrumental aspects are unquestionably great.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Wow, "Justice League VS Bizarro League" is Bad!

That Was Atrocious

Things made to be all-ages or with kids in mind do not have to be childish or bad. Seriously, things that are made so that they can appeal to youth can still be fun and enjoyable for adults too. The thing is, so often we find pieces of entertainment that take the idea of, "For children," and use that as a synonym for, "Dumb humor, no plot, and otherwise lacking in enjoyment." For an example of a movie that is suitable for the young'uns but which is also great for grown-ups look to, "The Lego Movie." With that in mind other Lego-related animated films should be good too, right?

Ha, yeah, no.

"Justice League VS Bizarro League," is incredibly bad. The Lego games with DC characters tend to be fun, have a good plot, and feature computer graphics (of course). This movie sadly only has computer graphics and sorely lacks anything else.
The story, as it were, is how Bizarro is causing a ruckus around Metropolis so Superman has him go to his own planet to chill-out and wreck stuff. Then a year later Bizarro comes back, steals the faulty duplicator ray that created him, and makes Bizarro-copies of some of the Justice League. Then he retreats to his planet where it turns out Darkseid is stealing its rocks for the purpose of destroying Earth or something...around the the last 18 minutes I kind of tuned out and found myself staring into space thinking about random stuff as opposed to giving this miserable excuse for a movie much of any attention. Oh, and as the flick is only 45 minutes (or so) clearly things go downhill fast.

The jokes tend to be pretty lame, with them being either Wonder Woman repeatedly tripping for no apparent reason, Cyborg stating things that sound vaguely racist for the writers to have him say as he's the only black character on the team (making it seem like it was what a bunch of white people thought a black man would talk like), or Batman having an inexplicable huge hatred for Superman.
That last one was really odd too, with Batman of course in the comics having trust issues with Superman, but here he basically is plotting how to utterly destroy the Man of Steel due to thinking his being an alien makes him an impossible-to-ever-trust monster.

The one positive thing I can say about the movie is that the animation is pretty solid. It kind of looks just like an unplayable Lego Justice League game--which is good as if this were a game it would be a pretty dreary waste of time. The fact that watching this at least didn't make my eyes bleed from awful animation is a plus.

Overall this was a quite bad movie, and one that no adult or child should be subjected to. Avoid it, avoid it like the plague.
1 out of 5 stars.