Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bear with us…

I apologize for the lack of content for the past few weeks, but as you could imagine, we’ve all been quite “busy” lately… (especially Lance)

Thank you for your continued support, we’ll be back to 100% soon.

/end lie

Friday, March 20, 2009

Saying Goodbye to Battlestar Galactica

Tonight, the series finale of the smartest show on television aired, Battlestar Galactica. It's not a show I talk about much, and it took the season 1 set of DVDs to get me hooked in, but after watching that first season of mayhem I was instantly hooked.

The show was a re-imagined version of its 1978 counterpart. It takes place in a far off universe where society lives amongst twelve colonies. After an attack by a robotic race known as the Cylons, created by the humans themselves, the people were forced to board any spaceship available. The main set piece being the Battlestar Galactica, run by their military leader Commander Adama (Edward James Olmos).

The show was definitely a hard sell. It aired on the Sci-fi network, a channel that most aren't even aware of, and at first glance looks like any other sci-fi show; space funerals, unknown technology, awkward languages, and so on. But the show rose high above everyones expectations, and quickly gained critical acclaim among many mainstream publications (ala TV Guide, Entertainment Weekly, etc).

The reason for its fame being the incredible crew behind it. Created and developed by David Eick and Ronald D. Moore, the show took on so many themes on such vastly deep levels. They dealt with maturity, love, race, humanity, politics, the struggle of society, and that's just the beginning. The way they integrated all of these themes into this universe was truly masterful. Supported by a stellar cast, featuring Edward James Olmos, Mary McDonnell, Katee Sackhoff, Jamie Bamber, James Callis, Tricia Helfer, Grace Park, and so many more, you instantly found a piece of yourself in all of these characters; witnessing their many triumphs as well as their unique personal flaws.

This show first aired around 2003, a time when my love for television really began with shows like Lost, House, Grey's and so on. It's really something else to follow a show from beginning to end. I got to follow the lives of these characters for five years, watching their individual struggles take place, and then to witness their last moments on screen, truly remarkable.

I remember going to Comic Con year after year, attending the Battlestar panels, being surrounded by so many dedicated fans, who also fell in love with the characters and the brilliant storytelling. This is why I love television, and why I want to be a part of something as epic as this. A combination of magnificent storytelling, the unity of an enormous crew all working for the same goal, and the adoration of so many people worldwide, really what more could you ask for. So to everyone involved in the creation of Battlestar Galactica, I congratulate you on a job well done, and I look forward to seeing more work like this in the future. A piece like this will go down in television history as one of the most emotionally powerful artistic works ever created, so as I raise my glass, I'm sure many will join me in saying, "so say we all."

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Keys to winning America’s Best Dance Crew


Some of the requirements:

1. You must represent the West Coast
2. Your group must consist entirely of dudes (Asians preferably)
3. You must portray yourselves as goofy, energetic, and fun-loving
4. Your group must know how to breakdance, or at least have a few Bboys

Anyways, congratulations to Quest Crew for achieving the (Asian) American Dream last week, earning the distinction of being America’s Best Dance Crew for Season 3.

I actually never follow ABDC anymore, not since the first season with Kaba Modern and the Jabbawockeez running the show, but if I did, I’d of course include some generic compliments.

“Quest Crew KILLED it this season.”
“I knew they were going to win from the start!”
“After their performance in Week 4, the competition was pretty much OVAH.”

I really thought the runners-up, Beat Freaks, were going to win it all this season, especially after their amazing display of telekinetic powers.

Then again, they failed to fulfill Requirement #2 (See above). Better luck next season!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Watchmen is not your ordinary Fanboy popcorn flick: A Review & Spoilers



Thanks to my Hollywood hook-ups (aka MCAS Miramar), I got the chance to catch a special showing of Watchmen this past Sunday, so for the time being I get to play the role of a hard-to-please movie critic.

Watchmen, however, did not disappoint one bit. I had never come across the comics/graphic novel before, but even as a standalone product, the film easily turned me into a fan. After watching one of the greatest movie trailers back in July during The Dark Knight, and after a long wait as the release date kept getting pushed back, Watchmen nevertheless lived up to all the fanboy hype and much more.


Be prepared, though, for a lot of slasher-esque violence you typically found in horror films, with limbs getting chopped off, skin melting, people getting vaporized and exploding into gory bits and pieces – lots of fun stuff. Be also prepared for a lot of nudity, as the Blue Man Group (Dr. Manhattan) decides to spend most of the movie fully exposed and casually showing off their glowwatchmen_comicing goods. The main female character in the movie, Silk Spectre, takes her clothes off too, so I guess that balances things out for those of you worried about two hours of blue dick on screen.

Those issues aside, I wouldn’t actually consider Watchmen your standard “comic book movie,” like what has been popular in Hollywood for some time now (i.e. Fantastic Four, Transformers, Ironman), or at least in a general fanboy sense. Sure, it includes plenty of fanboy elements that would please any theater full of nerds – lots of fight scenes, sex, explosions, cool superhero costumes – but in reality, Watchmen deals with much more serious and mature themes that makes it way more sophisticated than the average ‘origin-of-superhero-to-defeating-villain’ formula.

War, propaganda, politics, crime, morality; even more interesting is how the Watchmen story re-imagines and deconstructs the whole superhero genre, creating an alternate history where costumed vigilantes exist in society and explores how they deal with real-world issues. (If a bunch of guys decide to disguise themselves and rob a bank, why can’t someone decide to dress up themselves and stop them?) The Watchmen universe is just as interesting, set in a 1985 America where Nixon is still President, the war in Vietnam lasted only one week (thanks to Dr. Manhattan.) and is now the 51st State, and Cold War tensions with the Soviet Union is about to reach its breaking point.

What I also really enjoyed about Watchmen was how it featured an ensemble cast of “superheroes,” and the ambiguity that came with attempting to define the true protagonist and antagonist of the storyline – especially at the end of the film, as the audience gets to decide who they relate to more, and there really is no right or wrong position to take. (Sort of like the set-up of the Iliad/Troy, and how you could argue “Achilles/Brad Pitt is the shit – No way man, Hector/Eric Bana is way cooler,” etc.)

This is probably what makes Watchmen such a good film and separates it from all the other comic book movies out there; by already having a complex, quality narrative anchoring it, the people making the film version of it would really have to fuck up to make it suck.

Of course, not taking away from the work of director Zack Snyder (300) and his crew, as his often surreal visual style seemed like a perfect fit for the premise and setting of Watchmen. The CGI and action scenes were on point, and while the acting was a little dry at times, the cast still played their roles well enough to highlight the distinct qualities of each of their characters. I also thought the use of popular music throughout the film was done quite nicely, with some pre-emo and hippie 60’s music thrown into the mix like Simon & Garfunkel and Janis Joplin. I would even consider the opening credits my favorite part of the movie, as a montage setting up the alternate history of the Watchmen world is shown, with Bob Dylan - The Times They are a-Changin’ playing in the background, all to great effect.

Hopefully, even with all the fanboy hype, positive reactions to Watchmen will help reshape the current stereotypes of comic books and the superhero genre, inspiring new possibilities and spurring more interest in similar, lesser known comics of its nature. Regardless, Watchmen simply reminds me why films are truly the art form of today and the future.

“The Superman exists, and he is American.”

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Food Review: Coldstone Cupcakes

With the yogurt craze sweeping through California, the fine people at Coldstone Creamery, with their delicious scoops of fatty ice cream combined with your choice of topping, are fighting back with the introduction of everyone's favorite tiny, cup sized treat, cupcakes!

These delicious concocsions come in one of three flavors: Cake Batter Delux, red velvet cake with cake batter ice cream, Sweet Cream, yellow cake with sweet cream ice cream, and my personal favorite, Double Chocolate Devotion, devils food cake with chocolate ice cream. The first thing you'll notice when biting (or cutting) into one of these is that it's enclosed in a chocolate shell. Not exactly the easiest thing to hold by the hand and dive into, but tasty regardless. All three feature a chocolate shell, a very small layer of cake, ice cream on top of that, then topped with a buttercream frosting.

They're definitely good, but in some ways they totally miss the mark. As you can see from the photo, the amount of cake in the cupcake is actually pretty pathetic. When I think cupcake, I think a nice, fluffy cake, topped with frosting, but these are pretty much all ice cream. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, I mean, they are an ice cream store, but I believe that if the cake to ice cream ratio was improved we'd have a real hit. Another thing is they aren't very friendly to the hands. This isn't something that you can just walk up to and bite, unless you're planning on getting your face and clothes sticky, you'll need proper tools: maybe a small plate, a knife, a fork, etc.

Regardless, if you're looking for a nice ice cream treat, maybe something different from the typical trip to Yogurt World or Rite Aid, then these can really hit the spot. With a price tag of $9.99, they're not the most affordable option, but if there's something special going on or if you just feel like spending for whatever reason, there are crappier things you can spend your money on. So if you're in the mood for something sweet, check these out, because they're only here till March 31st!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

To Hell and back: L.A. at its worst

Don’t get me wrong, I still consider Los Angeles a Big City of Dreams, but there are some areas in L.A. that San Diegans should avoid entirely. Namely, the Citadel Outlets located right off the 5 freeway. 


Sure, it’s an impressive sight with all its fancy Babylonian architecture, but what appears to be a harmless shopping mall is really an unholy temple dedicated to the worst of what mankind has to offer… 


It was sort of like seeing roadkill – repulsive to even look at, but you still take a look anyway, and as you get closer you eventually turn away in disgust.

Nothing could prepare me, though, for their most sacred relic… 


By then, enough was enough. It was as if the shoe was emanating some sort of foul stench, and I had to get the hell out of there before it caught on to me.  I usually have a strong stomach for most non-alcohol situations, but I’ll gladly take this horrible experience as an exception.

Fuckn White People

Make sure you turn your volume up to watch this cuz its pretty hard to hear.

My initial feeling towards this video is the myspace kid is freakin the fuck out and someone should slap him. After sitting and watching the whole thing in its entirety i've come to the conclusion that everyone in this video should get their ass kicked. Especially the older brother for being such an ass. Kids that get tormented like that end up going postal and shooting everyone in the house or at school. I've also come to the conclusion that white people are kinda fucked in the head, sure i might be generalizing but just remember...."ARRGGGHHH!! YOU FUCKING BITCH!! LEAVE ME ALONE FUCKING DIE BITCH!" Like Russell peters said, "White parents go home and beat your kid's ass."

-Just Ray back in effect