10 Things That Must Be in a Live-Action The Tick Relaunch

Friday, September 5, 2014 at 6:00 am

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SPOON! Rumors abound that Amazon will resurrect the the prematurely cancelled live action The Tick! Ben Edlund, creator of The Tick, confirms the project "is being pursued with vigor!" Patrick Warburton is expected to reprise his starring role! His perfect live action Tick costume should return with him!

What's not clear so far is whether it'll be a brand new reboot (aside from Warburton as the Tick) or a continuation of the last live-action show. Does anybody remember 2001's The Tick? It was a mixed bag of great and not so great. It was canceled after nine episodes before it had a chance to iron out its kinks, and I'd like to see the new The Tick flourish where its predecessor failed. So here's a list of things it should work on to help it stand up to today's competition. It can be mighty!

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7 Times Wolverine Has Already Died

Thursday, September 4, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Marvel is making quite a big hub-bub, Bub, and it's all about the Death of Wolverine mini-series from writer Charles Soule and artist Steve McNiven. Longtime (and even short time) comic book readers know that Wolverine is about as likely to stay dead as Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, and every other major superhero who has ever taken a dirt nap. While Marvel is making a lot of noise of this particular death of Wolverine, the character has actually died plenty of times already in the comics over the years. Sometimes briefly, other times...well, slightly less briefly. Here are but seven notable times old Logan has died in the pages of Marvel Comics.

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10 Things Learned on the Set of Utopia - Fox's Faux-Libertarian, Real-Life Truman Show

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at 7:00 am

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Thomas More's Renaissance-era novel Utopia depicted an island community for whom private property and privacy were non-existent, divorce was legal, and pre-marital sex and atheism were illegal. In relatively more recent times, Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged depicted all the wealth creators of society dropping out to create their own separate civilization, in what is described by adherents as "going Galt."

Fox TV's Utopia appears to be drawing on both of these for its new reality show, except that rather than prove a philosophical point either right or left, it's more interested in entertaining you with the antics of people forced to cope for themselves on a 5-acre farm for a year.

Before the participants moved in to their new home, I was invited to the set, located in the canyons of Santa Clarita, California, to see what they - and the viewers - might be in for. I learned things.

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The 7 Best Ways to Clear up Comics Continuity Errors

Friday, August 29, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Warner Brothers
Infinite Batmen from Brave and the Bold

When you put them together, Marvel and DC have been publishing two continuous, multi-titled universes for more than 125 years. Trying to keep the rich histories of these books straight has been an uphill fight for the editors and the publishers, and it's a common problem in genre fiction. The instant an author has to account for more than two people in more than one book, she runs the risk of losing track of one of them for long enough to trigger a flood of enraged fan mail.


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7 Hilarious U.S. Rip-Offs at England's Drayton Manor Theme Park

Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 6:00 am

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One of the ways to lure my wife to England for a vacation was the promise of seeing the Harry Potter studio tour outside of London. The other was Thomas the Tank Engine Land, which is a small corner of the larger theme park called Drayton Manor. Thematically, the larger park is a bit disjointed - it wants to have something for everyone, and thus there's no overarching theme. You have the Thomas rides for kids, from which adults without accompanying minors are actually banned; a small zoo tucked away from everything else that mostly seems to have emus; various high-intensity thrill rides, various not-so-thrilling rides, and rather disappointing food stands.

One thing that is clear is that whoever designed the park based parts of it on popular American theme parks...apparently without entirely understanding why. If Disneyland and Universal Studios are Superman, Drayton at times feels like Bizarro's cube-world...or an Axel Braun porn parody without any naked people. Here are its strangest interpretations of American attractions...

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10 Secrets About the History of Heathers With Writer Daniel Waters

Wednesday, August 27, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Heathers is one of the greatest films of and about the '80s. Not only skewering the odd mix of cultural conservatism and libertine excess that still dominate high schools, writer Daniel Waters' script is a classic: dark, sharp, funny, mean (and at the same time, oddly sympathetic to its characters, even at their worst). Released in the spring of 1989, the film launched Waters' career, as well as that of its lead Christian Slater (J.D.), while kicking Winona Ryder's (Veronica) career to the next level following the success of Beetlejuice. The cool girl who gets fed up with with being an in-crowd crony, and the homicidal outsider who becomes her boyfriend, lived in the bizarro universe where John Hughes movies weren't afraid to use a pretty girl's death by cleaning solution as a punchline.

To commemorate 25 years of Heathers, Waters and I spoke by phone recently, with the writer looking back at how it got made (with very little supervision), its legacy (say thank you, Joss Whedon), and how sometimes trying to get Winona Ryder off your back leads to a surprise sequel announcement.

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4 Things the Porn Parody Doctor Whore Gets Right, and 3 It Doesn't

Tuesday, August 26, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Even though so many nerd properties are now pretty much mainstream, it's still a special time when a nerdy property gets popular enough for a porn parody. This has been true for things like The Avengers, James Cameron's Avatar, and Star Trek. And now it's true for Doctor Who as well.

Today, to celebrate, we're looking at Wood Rocket's Doctor Whore, a recently made (and free to watch online if you're 18) parody, that mainly focuses on the era of the 11th Doctor. This is actually the third Doctor Who skin flick I've heard of; its predecessors being Dr. Loo and the Filthy Phaleks, and Doctor Screw. (Nobody seems to have gone with the more obvious "Cocktor Who" yet.) Doctor Whore's name might not roll off the tongue as well its predecessors, but it still is something to look into.

This is your last warning: get your kids, pets, and whoever else will make you feel guilty out of the room, and hit the jump.
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8 Things I Learned at Power Morphicon 2014

Monday, August 25, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Liz Ohanesian
Rita Replusa cosplay at Power Morphicon
It's been more than 20 years since Mighty Morphin Power Rangers hit television sets across the United States and became an after-school sensation. Back then, kids cheered for Jason, Zack, Billy, Trini and Kimberly. Right now, the elementary school crowd is following the adventures of Troy, Noah, Emma, Gia, Jake and Orion on Nickeldeon. The characters changed over the years - as did the costumes and sets - but a lot of things remain the same. There is still the repurposed footage from Japanese Super Sentai series. There is still an air of campiness to it. More importantly, though, there are those wholesome teenage characters who learn about friendship and working for some greater good.

Every couple years, Power Rangers fans descend upon Pasadena, California for Power Morphicon, a biannual convention that brings together the multiple generations of cast members under one roof. I last attended Power Morphicon in 2010 and it's grown a lot since then. The crowd was big enough to sustain a few long lines, mostly for the official Saban event and a panel with the original Rangers, and create a few cases of gridlock in the exhibit hall. A renewed interest in the series, thanks to 20th anniversary celebrations and a recent movie announcement, is certainly underfoot. The event is exciting enough to even capture the attention of those of us who casually watched the show way back when...and informative enough to teach the non-hardcore a thing or two about the franchise. Here are a few things I learned at Power Morphicon 2014.

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The 17 Coolest Things in Starlog #009: Star Wars Ascends, Star Trek Descends, and Shatner Absconds

Friday, August 22, 2014 at 6:00 am

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The ninth issue of Starlog hit the stands on September 1, 1977, the sixth of the eight-times-a-year issues. The focus is primarily on television, including the surely-going-to-happen new Star Trek series intended to replace the definitely-not-gonna-happen Star Trek feature film, but Star Wars continues to pull focus. And William Shatner tries to walk away from it all.

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10 Character Deaths that Warped the Minds of '80s Children

Thursday, August 21, 2014 at 6:00 am

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My first real-life experience with death took place when I was about five years old. Apparently, while I was at kindergarten, one of my two hamsters decided he no longer liked his roommate, and proceeded to do his best Hannibal Lecter impression on him. My mother walked in and saw the surviving rodent elbows deep in his counterpart's entrails. As my home had a strict "No Cannibalism" policy, she felt it was necessary to dispose of the offending creature before he busted out a nice Chianti. Her method of execution was to take the hamster, put it in a mason jar, and heave it as far as she could into the woods (sorry PETA, but this took place 30 years ago, so the statute of limitations is long past). As I walked off the bus, my sister, absolutely delighted with the thought of delivering me disastrous news, ran down to tell me the tale of the untimely deaths of both of my beloved pets. I walked the rest of the way home from the bus crying my eyes out when to my surprise, I saw my hamster was walking up the street towards my house. It was a Christmas miracle in October, that is until my mom assured me that it was not my dead hamster, scooped him up, put him in another mason jar, SEALED it this time with a lid, poked holes in the lid so it wouldn't die relatively painlessly by asphyxiation and could instead starve to death, and then launched him once more into the woods.


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