Street fair season in San Francisco kicked off this this past weekend with the 47th annual Cherry Blossom Festival in Japantown. It tends to focus more on traditional Japanese culture - I arrived just as a Taiko drumming performance was ending - but it's also a precursor to one of my most favorite festivals, also happening in Japantown, later this summer: the J-POP SUMMIT Festival. As the name implies, J-POP is a celebration of all things related to Japanese pop culture - as they put it, "the latest in Japanese music, film, art, fashion, games, anime, food, as well as" (my personal favorite) "niche subcultures" -- and we got a preview in the form of an autograph and photo session with Ayumi Seto. She's a Harajuku Kawaii model turned Aomoji-kei fashion designer, and I spoke with her about just what Aomoji-kei fashion is, as well as about the nerdy influences in her new clothing line, "Aymmy in the batty girls," which takes most of its inspiration from American pop culture. (There are aliens and zombies involved.)
While I am certain - not - that most of you were either partying at Coachella or gettin' down to the MTV Movie Awards, many of your fellow readers were scaring up the usual mess o' stories that we didn't have room for last week. Compiled from the weekend thread with the help of Kyle LeClair, here are your weekend highlights of hilariousness.
Tipsters include: donnaryoko, Anyone00, SlyDante777, Dr.Gonzo82, Gallen_Dugall, Citrus_King, troi, andre_morelloMore >>
Imagine the Jim Varney vs. Trolls Disney comedy from the '90s...only Ernest P. Worrell is now a flesh-eating zombie, the trolls are pedophiles in rubber masks, and the kids are all potential murderers in the making. The lo-fi video and the eerie metal tune by Creepoid - featuring repurposed soundbites from the original film - add up to something simultaneously cheesy and deeply unsettling, much like Korine's Trash Humpers.
The late, great Varney would probably be appalled to see his kid-friendly character get a horror makeover. I, however, am fascinated. And upset...but maybe in a good way? KnoWhutIMean?More >>
Dave King Not from the actual show.
Presumably for the benefit of people who think The Walking Dead is getting too child-murdery, Syfy today announced 13 episodes of a new show called Z Nation, which, billed as it is as being from the producers of Sharknado, will presumably be difficult for viewers to take too seriously.
Per press release:
Karl Schaefer (Eerie Indiana, Eureka, The Dead Zone) will serve as executive producer and showrunner. "Z Nation will take viewers where no zombie has gone before," says Schaefer. The show, he continues, adds "a sense of hope to the horror of the apocalypse - our everyday heroes take the fight to the zombies. It'll be an epic journey unlike anything you've seen before."
The story involves a group of survivors traveling from New York to California, where the last functioning viral lab waits for the last plague survivor to be brought so a cure can be made from his blood. Just be careful, because the dude has "a dark secret."
But not so dark it takes away all sense of hope. Because this is the happy zombie show.
Our name for it is better.
Well, I for one was too busy planning a WrestleMania party all weekend to see what other fun things were going on in the world, but if, like me, you missed out, here are some highlights of this weekend's reader-submitted items, compiled with the help of Kyle LeClair.
Tipsters this week include SlyDante777, skrag2112, Dr.Gonzo82, Anyone00, franciebrady27, rkwsuperstar, troi, Gallen_DugallMore >>
Luke's mother-in-law is former LAPD, a licensed property appraiser and a self-described crazy cat lady. None of which has prepared her for TR readers. All questions and answers are real.
If you missed the first part of my trip to Mexico with my mother, it's HERE. Now, let's continue.
When we checked in to the resort, we were issued an arm band (if you lose it, 250 pesos is charged) and towel keys (you lose, you pay). They give 1 towel card for each person. The trick here is to ask for more cards. You can get them at the front desk. We put one towel on the lounge and the other was either to dry with or cover up with. Even with the extra towel I got sunburned. The towels are large, which was great. But lose a towel or your wrist band and you will have to pay extra. The exchange rate was 12 pesos to 1 US dollar.More >>
Of course if you are a devil-worshipper, your job just got made a lot easier. Inspired by The Walking Dead, Philadelphia-based Dock Street Brewing Company's latest creation is a brew called Walker. And as befits a zombie drink, it's made with actual brains. Smoked goat brains, to be precise...and they added cranberries to make it a bloodier color.
So how does it taste? Well, obviously the creators are about as unbiased as a post-apocalypse governor believing his daughter can be cured of living death, but they describe it as "brewed with substantial amounts of malted wheat, oats, and flaked barley for a smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Fuggle hops provide delicate, earthy notes, while the cranberries create a sinister, bloody hue, and a slight tartness. The pre-sparge-brain-addition provides this beer with intriguing, subtle smoke notes. In true walker fashion, don't be surprised if its head doesn't hang around forever."
Fuggle hops. So it truly is one Fugly beverage, eh?
If any of our readers live in the neighborhood and care to try some, please report back.
My own weekend involved molluscs and crustaceans for breakfast, courtesy of an extraordinarily generous friend...
Meanwhile, other nerdily newsworthy things were happening, and with the compilation help of Kyle LeClair, here are some highlights of what you may have missed in the weekend open thread. Tipsters this week include GreggoryBasore, SlyDante777, skrag2112, Anyone00, troi, rkwsuperstar, Citrus King, andre morello, Gallen_Dugall, franciebrady27, James.k.PolkMore >>
Frozen - I remember when Disney movies didn't have to resort to jokes about farts and nose-picking, but those minor missteps aside, Frozen is a reasonably fun time and has that one good song by that Dazeem chick who got the Oscar, as well as a somewhat disturbing number in which the snowman obliviously wishes for summer without realizing he will die horribly if it ever comes.
It's also a movie that can bring everybody together - both our own Eric Diaz and some conservative Mormon grandma who blogs agree that it's Disney's gayest feature yet. And I'm not sure which of them has seen it more times.
Saving Mr. Banks - Weird of Disney to put out two of their big Oscar-bait movies on the same day, but this one's more for the parents - a slightly sanitized tale of the arguments between Walt Disney and P.L. Travers en route to making Mary Poppins. Whether it is or is not accurate - as far as I can tell, it's as "mostly true" as any Hollywood biopic - the culture-clash between the American big kid archetype of Walt and the prim, mannered English decorum of Travers is pitch-perfect. As the child of parents who were so very similar to these onscreen portrayals, I found it endlessly amusing in that regard. Also notable for being the first movie I've seen in forever that portrays an alcoholic fuck-up of a parent (Colin Farrell) without dismissing his better qualities too.More >>
Yeah, I think you know there was a fair involving toys...but what else happened this President's Day weekend? Lots, it turns out. With thanks to Kyle LeClair for the assist in compiling, this week's tipsters include: FakeAssName, skrag2112, Anyone00, rkwsuperstar, SlyDante777, troi, Dr.Gonzo82, Canadian.Scott, Citrus_King, Gallen_Dugall.
Keep reading for some of the weird and wonderful things you might have missed in our weekend open thread.More >>