7 Ways Sinister 2 Is an Utter Disappointment

By Luke Y. Thompson in Daily Lists, Movies
Friday, August 21, 2015 at 5:00 am

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I love the first Sinister. If you're a fan of horror and/or a writer, I don't know how you could not. Compared to so many of the other supernatural-themed Blumhouse movies, where the threat remains hidden or abstract, it delivered their first real potentially iconic monster in Bughuul, who masters all media like a demonic Howard Stern and commands your kids' attention appropriately.

With the same writing team on the sequel - one of whom was the director of the first film - I thought I was in good hands. I expected at least that what worked well would be re-trodden. Unfortunately, the new one recycles almost everything except the good stuff.

Many MAJOR SPOILERS follow - if all you want to know is whether my thumb or a different digit is raised, I suspect you've figured that much out by now. I'm about to tell you why.

Agents of SHIELD's Mockingbird Spin-off Is Back on Again

By Luke Y. Thompson in Comics, TV
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 5:34 pm

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I'm not crazy about the idea of taking one of the best characters on Agents of SHIELD away from that show, but with Skye's alien family tree becoming the primary focus, perhaps it's time. Anyway, the Mockingbird show that was proposed and then scrapped is now going to pilot, probably next year sometime.

On the other hand, if they wanted to do a whole spin-off about Kyle MacLachlan's character running a pet shop, I'd watch every episode in a heartbeat. But if this gets me closer to a Palicki toy I'm all for it.

Check out Captain Kirk's New Duds in Star Trek Beyond (Plus Female Alien)

By Luke Y. Thompson in Movies
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 2:18 pm

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One thing I have always enjoyed in these nu-Trek movies is the way Pine takes the classic Shatnerisms and makes them his own. In a new set video from Screencrush, we get to see him do the hand gestures, and Simon Pegg goof off a lot between takes.

There's also a white-skinned alien played by Sofia Boutella that I bet Kirk puts the moves on. Because if he doesn't, I call shenanigans.

How Did I Not Know That Some Amazing Killer Instinct Toys Now Exist?

By Luke Y. Thompson in Toys, Video Games
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 12:00 pm

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I haven't actually played Killer Instinct since the '90s, but I'm really digging this new character based on Kayako from The Grudge.

The line comes from Ultimate Source Toys, a company with whom I'm not super-familiar, and they look to be like old-style McFarlanes - super-detailed with a basic pre-pose and a few points of articulation to customize it slightly. Toyark, where I first heard about these, has some disagreement over whether they're 6-inch or 9-inch.

More pics from Ultimate Source below...

You Can't Buy a Realistic Aliens Pulse Rifle in a Toy Store, But You Can Make One

By Luke Y. Thompson in Merchandise, Miscellaneous
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 10:59 am

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I see NECA Toys constantly get asked on twitter why they don't make a 1:1 Aliens pulse rifle replica, and their answer is a legal one - they simply aren't allowed to, because it's too similar to a real gun.

However, DIY Prop Shop reveals that there is a toy gun you can buy in stores that will make a great base for a custom pulse rifle, with a few easy modifications.

(Please mod responsibly if you do - the paranoia about real-life mad gunmen is very tangible right now. Only point a pulse rifle at an actual xenomorph)

Watch the First Three Minutes of Fear the Walking Dead Now

By Luke Y. Thompson in Comics, TV
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 8:30 am

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Because the new Walking Dead show is set in Los Angeles, it opens with -

a) Pretty-looking Johnny Depp wanna-be with perfectly tousled hair and an open shirt revealing a tiny waistline.

b) Catholic churches.

c) A hot blonde with a strangely niche diet...so to speak.

d) What appears to be a dead gangbanger

e) all of the above.

Watch it below to learn the obvious answer.

Your Nightmares Are No Longer the Only Place Where Spiders Can Fly

By Luke Y. Thompson in Science
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 8:00 am

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"Fly" is a bit of a relative term here - it's used in the same context as in "flying squirrel," in that they can glide from tree to tree. But I'm sure that just makes you feel so much better.

The twisted part of the story, though, is how scientists confirmed their theory about the airborne arachnids.

The researchers use a simple test: They drop creatures from a great height.
Hold the phone - dropping things off of trees to see if they fly is a real research test? Do I even want to know how we came to the conclusion that pigs can't fly?

The real implications here are for future iterations of Spider-Man, who can now conserve web fluid much more easily.


Ask Luke's Mother in Law: Bees in the Bathroom, Guns on the Range

By Luke Y. Thompson in Columns, Food & Drink
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 6:30 am

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Got questions? Martha Boyd has all sorts of answers. A desert-dweller, self-proclaimed crazy cat lady, former LAPD officer and widow to a Green Beret, she's seen and heard things crazier than you've imagined. And is ready for whatever odd questions you have, so bring them on!

Hi all. Another week, and most kids are back to school and parents are doing the happy dance with teachers doing the "when is the next vacation" song. We have great teachers out here in the Morongo Basin. I know several and they are dedicated and very hard working. With most schools the classes are over crowded and lack funds for a lot of supplies. But they keep going. I'm not sure I would survive in a room with 35 seventh graders.

The 9 Anime Transfer Students We Love the Most

By Liz Ohanesian in Anime, Daily Lists
Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 5:00 am

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Screen shot of Kinmoza!
From supernatural action series to slice-of-life comedies, transfer students show up in a lot of anime.

In real life, the latest addition to a school might get a few questions before class resumes as normal. In fiction, transfer students can put a plot in motion. Would Tina Belcher have gone bad without a new girl at school? Sometimes, they drive a feature length story. What would Heathers, Mean Girls, The Craft or any other teen movie be without the student who disrupts the norm? Other times, new kids have breathed new life into ongoing young adult series, like The Babysitter's Club or Sweet Valley High.

Transfer students are common enough to earn their own TV Trope entry, and anime is no exception to the phenomenon. Whether you're watching the dramatic saga of magical girls or a light-hearted slice-of-life comedy, transfer students are as much a part of these school-centric stories as uniforms and extracurricular clubs.

With the back-to-school season upon us, let's take a look at some of the great transfer students of anime. These are students whose arrival sparked a new mystery to unravel. Some became heroes. Some hold secrets that are crucial to the story. A few will bring fun and excitement to a group of new friends. Others heighten the drama. All will remind you that it's not a teen anime unless there's a transfer student.

Masters of the Universe Movie Gets Yet Another Writer, Who Probably Shouldn't Get Used to the Gig

By Luke Y. Thompson in Cartoons, Movies, Toys
Wednesday, August 19, 2015 at 4:51 pm

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Real T Dragon

Someday I will do a Daily List of nerd movies we keep hearing about that will never actually be made. On it will be Beetlejuice 2, any Stephen King adaptation that requires a commitment of more than one movie upfront, and the Masters of the Universe live-action reboot.

But still they try. The latest writer to be announced is Christopher Yost, veteran of several superhero cartoon shows, and also the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok and Max Steel, which is to say he has experience working with both Mattel and blonde mystical musclemen with magic weapons.

He seems to have everything going for him, and meanwhile, in the toy world, Mattel is finally licensing out the brand to third-parties like Mondo and Super7 with a vengeance. So maybe this is the perfect moment for it to happen. But this very website, under previous management and my own, has thought that one too many times before.