Rank: Top Ten Most Clicked Pics

No Pacific Rim Uprising Yet….

But I do still plan to see the film as soon as possible.  While I’m waiting for a chance to see the film (and review it), I thought that it would be interesting to take a look at the ten most clicked photos from my blog since I first started posting over four years ago!  I’ll give a brief comment for each photo and I’ve also included five honorable mentions that just missed the cut.  I hope you enjoy!

#1–Star Trek Continues Wallpaper

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It’s no surprise that a Star Trek Continues wallpaper is my most clicked image.  All but one of my most viewed posts has something to do with STC.  It’s one of my favorite shows and it always will be.

#2–The Discount Dark Knight and Jinx (Curry Time Cosplay)

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I’m absolutely, one hundred percent, tee totally sure that the reason that this is my second most viewed photo is because my alter ego, DDK, is in the photo.  It has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the very lovely Curry Time Cosplay is in this photo…at….all.

In all honesty, this is just one of multiple photos from my post that highlighted a wonderful weekend at CoastCon in Biloxi, MS.  It’s my second most viewed post of all time, and this photo can attest to that!

#3–Another STC photo

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Featuring four of the lovely ladies that were part of the STC crew, it’s no shocker that this photo was my third most clicked pic! (L to R: Kim Stinger, Kipleigh Brown, Michele Specht, and Cat Roberts).

#4–CoastCon Strikes Again!!!

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DDK took a ton of photos at CoastCon a few years ago and once again, he’s pretty sure that the reason that everybody clicked on this photo is because he’s in it.  It has absolutely nothing to do with the lovely Wonder Woman cosplayer in the photo.  Oh, and if anyone knows her, let me know so that I can list her name and/or cosplay page if she has one.

#5–Jinkies!  CoastCon is dominating this list!top5

Velma never looked better than she did here at CoastCon.  If you know who this person is, let me know so that I can give her credit.  Based on the number of clicks on the photo, she was a hit with my readers.

#6–The Amorettes

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Truth be told, I could have made a list entirely of photos of the Amorettes.  All of their photos that I have featured have been clicked multiple times, but this one surged into sixth place on my list.

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Todd Haberkorn has a lot of fans, so it’s not a big surprise to see that my photo that I took with him a couple of years ago made my Top Ten list.  Between his massive anime following and his loyal Star Trek Continues fans, it’s no wonder that plenty of people have clicked this pic….or because I’m in it.

#8–Mechacon’s Mascots, Jett & Zee

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I’ve taken plenty of photos with Jett & Zee over the years, but this particular photo, taken at CyPhaCon a few years ago, obviously impressed my readers.  It zooms in at number eight on my list.

#9–You can’t keep CoastCon down!

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CoastCon is back on the list in the nine hole with this photo of myself, Awkward Cosplay Girl and another wonderful cosplayer that I don’t have a name for at the moment.  Let me know who she is and I’ll give her full credit.

#10–Surprise, Surprise: CoastCon closes out the Top Ten

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My good friend, Nick Foreman, better known as Toad Sage Cosplay, rounds out the Top Ten with yet another CoastCon photo.  Here he is as the good Doctor from Doctor Who, (#7 to be exact).  That means that five out of ten of my top photos come from my second most viewed post.

CoastCon obviously has some loyal fans….or they like to click on photos of me with lovely ladies, Scooby-Doo lady friends, or the Doctor!

Here are my next five honorable mentions in order by the number of views:

1-Me with the very lovely and extremely cool, Michele Specht, from Star Trek Continues.

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2-Bryce Dallas Howard, probably because of her hair.

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3-CoastCon still going strong with Lego Wonder Woman.

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4-My favorite group of green ladies, Orion’s Envy, and myself.

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5-The dashingly handsome Chris Doohan from Star Trek Continues.

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I hope that you enjoyed this little break from my standard posts.  I plan on making a few more lists in the near future.  Thanks for reading!!!

 

Gulf South Convention Roundup!

All Over The Gulf States!

With a new year comes new geeky things!  One of those geeky things is a fresh round of conventions across the Gulf South!  In this post I’ll be listing a few of these conventions that will be hitting us within the next few months.  I’ll also let you know if I’ll be in attendance at any of them.

First off, let’s take a look at Pensacon in Pensacola, FL.  Although I’ve never had the pleasure of attending this particular convention, I’ve heard nothing but great things about it.  It has grown with each year and based on their guest list for 2018, they have no intentions of slowing down any time soon!

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From The Walking Dead to Doctor Who and Star Trek to Galaxy Quest, there is a media guest for everyone.  Some of my personal favorites include the original Buffy The Vampire Slayer and all around gorgeous lady, Kristy Swanson, the Swamp Thing film’s Adrienne Barbeau, and Married….With Children’s own Marcy Darcy, Amanda Bearse.  Other guests include Jack Skellington himself, Chris Sarandon, Walter Jones (Black Ranger from the original Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers), Cooper Andrews (the wonderful Jerry from The Walking Dead) and a whole host of other excellent actors, authors, artists, and exhibitors.

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Seriously, this convention is loaded, and if any of my friends happen to attend, I want a full report on this convention (and maybe a phone call from Kristy Swanson)!  Once my crazy schedule dies down a bit, I hope to make the trip to sunny Florida to attend Pensacon!  Check out all of their wonderful guests, vendors, artists, and more here.  Pensacon happens next month, February 23-25.

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Up next is one of my favorite conventions of all time, CoastCon.  Held in lovely Biloxi, MS at the beautiful Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center, this convention is celebrating its 41st year.  That’s right, kids.  This southern, fan-run convention has been kicking around as long as I have!

This year’s guests include anime voice artist, Bryce Papenbrook, and Sherrilyn Kenyon, author of the Lords of Avalon series and the Chronicles of Nick.  This is one of the most fan-friendly conventions that you can attend, and I love not only the convention itself, but the entire city of Biloxi.  This is the type of convention that you go to in order to hang out with friends old and new, and to attend panels covering all of your favorite fandoms.  Get information on guests, hotels, and more here.  The event will take place March 16-18.

Next up is the third incarnation of another one of my favorites, Southern Geekfest!  As of this writing, there hasn’t been much talk about this year’s event.  I’m hoping to actually make this event this year since I missed last year and because it is headed up by some wonderful people.  Hattiesburg, MS isn’t the first place one might think of when talking about pop culture, but there is a thriving fandom community in this wonderful Mississippi town.  Keep an eye out for more updates on this convention here.

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Last but not least is the local con, CyPhaCon, in Lake Charles, LA.  From April 6th-8th, CyPhaCon will take place at the Lake Charles Civic Center.  This year’s event looks to be just as excellent as the last couple of years with guests such as Warehouse 13’s Eddie McClintock, Babylon 5’s Jason Carter, and Farscape’s Gigi Edgley.  Anime fans will get the chance to meet Ian Sinclair and J. Michael Tatum.  Kimberly Richardson and Mike Moreau are slated to attend as author guests.  Morgan and Danny Allain will be in attendance as artist guests.  Cosplay guests, fan groups, and the performance group Take One Productions will also be in attendance.

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There are many more guests, including musical guests, to be announced, so be sure to look here for more information about this upcoming event.  I am definitely going to this event, so be sure to look for me.  When the event gets closer, I’ll let you all know exactly when I’ll be there.  My primary goal:  to get a hug from Gigi Edgley!  I loved her as Chiana on Farscape, and she stole my heart with her guest role on Star Trek Continues.

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That’s all for now, folks.  Thank you for reading my post.  If you’re attending any of these events, be sure to let me know how it goes!

My Geeky Christmas List!

Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-laaaaaaah!

I am not ashamed to admit that Christmas is my favorite holiday.  I love the music, the cheesy Hallmark movies, the gaudy decorations, and all of the wonderful smells that range from the pine of the Christmas trees to the cinnamon of the cookies baked for the holidays.  I also love the smell of frankincense that fills my church for Advent as we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Oh, and I love presents, giving and receiving them, as well!

I also enjoy making a Christmas wish list.  I have one over on Amazon (but I’m not shallow enough to link it on this post) that my friends and family use as a guide for picking out a gift for me.  I also have one that includes things that aren’t always attainable in this world, such as peace for all mankind, warm food and shelter for the homeless, and at least one gift for every child in the world, no matter how big or small it may be.

For this post I’m going to be making a Geeky Christmas List.  Feel free to list any of your own wishes in the comments section below, and let me know what you think about my list as well!

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First off, I hope that the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series will be at least as good as the last few.  From what I’ve read so far, the team’s dynamic will be changed.  How?  Raphael will be the leader in this series and Leonardo will have a “rebellious heart” (whatever that means).  It looks like Donnie and Mike will remain basically the same characters.  Look for Rise of The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to hit Nickelodeon next fall.  I haven’t seen any artwork for the new series, but it will supposedly follow a more traditional animation style similar to the original 1980’s cartoon.  Here’s a look at the logo:

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My next wish is that I hope that the upcoming Black Panther film (February, 2018) will bring back a more serious tone to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  With the latest Thor and Guardians of the Galaxy flicks laying on the humor to annoying levels (at least in my opinion), I hope that T’Challa and the people of Wakanda  cut back on the comedy a bit and focus on getting some serious work done.  After all, it’s the last move before Avengers: Infinity War hits the big screen (May, 2018).  You can’t tell me that Marvel will make Thanos’ attempt at conquering everything a buddy comedy, right?  Let’s hope that it’s pretty serious as well.

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My next wish is that the upcoming Aquaman film (December, 2018) proves to be a success similar to this 2017’s brilliant Wonder Woman.  2017’s other DC film, Justice League, appears to be somewhat divisive among fans and critics.  I personally enjoyed it, but professional critics (and a lot of fanboys) attacked it for its CGI, what they saw as a disjointed plot, rushed story, and, my personal favorite, too much humor.  Let’s hope that Aquaman can bring fans and critics together once again.  Jason Momoa looked good as Aquaman in the JL film, and gave a nice balance of grit and humor to his character.  I believe that he has enough charisma to carry a film on his own, so here’s hoping for a successful cinematic run for Arthur Curry.

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Another wish that I have for Christmas this year is that The Walking Dead finds its mojo when it returns for the second half of season eight.  With an “all out war” promised at the end of season seven, fans haven’t been offered much in the way of actual conflict.  Sure, the season opener featured an attack on the Sanctuary by the Kingdom, the Hilltop, and Alexandria, but it was nothing more than a drawn out action sequence.  There have also been character developing episodes that focused on Negan, King Ezekiel and Eugene, but unlike similar episodes in the past (and I know that I’m in the minority when it comes to enjoying these types of episodes), something is missing this time around.  At the end of this weekend’s episode, I was completely ready for Eugene to die.  He annoyed the fire out of me!  Let’s pray that the mid-season finale amps things up and that it will carry over into the second half of the season next year.

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My next wish is a selfish one.  This year I was only able to attend one sci-fi/pop culture convention.  While I really enjoyed my time at Louisiana Comic Con, I sorely missed getting to visit with my friends at CoastCon, CyPhaCon, and Southern Geek Fest.  Wizard World has lost my interest thanks to crazy crowds and absurd pricing.  I’d much rather stick with the smaller conventions where I can actually here myself talk to other people.  Hopefully I will make it to at least one of my favorite conventions this year.

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My list continues with a wish that is really all on me.  I hope to catch up on all of the shows that I have fallen behind on over the last couple of years.  I’m way behind on Arrow, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow, The Flash, Gotham, and Doctor Who.  Peter Capaldi’s run as the Doctor turned me off to the show, but with a new Doctor on the horizon, I’ve decided to give Capaldi another chance and have started watching that show again.  As far as the rest of the shows go, I just need more time.  Between work and life, I don’t have time to sit down and binge watch shows like I want to.

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I’m not a very big fan of anime, but I do enjoy watching it every now and then.  With Batman Ninja coming soon, I hope that it is better than the last Batman anime that I watched, 2008’s Batman: Gotham Knight, which is an anthology of six anime shorts.  I didn’t really care for any of the shorts that much, even with Kevin Conroy voicing the Dark Knight Detective.   The trailer for Batman Ninja was released in October of this year, and included a peek at a few of the villains that Batman will face, including the Joker and Gorilla Grodd.

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Something else that I’m wishing for this year is a truce between Marvel and DC Comics fans over the films, the cartoons, and the comics of each series.  I highly doubt that this will happen, but a boy can dream.  I enjoy both Marvel and DC’s offerings for different reasons, and while I might be a hardcore DC fan, I won’t automatically dislike any Marvel work just because it’s from Marvel.  Let’s all work together to make this wish come true!

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Speaking of comics, my next wish is that the Doomsday Clock series from DC Comics is good.  I haven’t read any of the DC Rebirth stuff yet (I’m still reading stories from the New 52), but I’m very intrigued by the combination of the Watchmen and the rest of the DC Universe, specifically the interaction of Superman with Dr. Manhattan.

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A project that I’ve been waiting on for some time is about to come to fruition.  It’s the topic of my next wish, which is that I hope that the screen adaptation of Steve Alten’s first MEG book is successful.  I loved the first three books in Alten’s MEG series about Jonas Taylor and his adventures squaring off against Megalodon sharks.  The first book, MEG, is probably my favorite, but I also love The Trench.

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The film is supposedly coming out in August of 2018.  It has been green-lighted, halted, restarted, etc. since the 90’s.  The version that is coming out next year will star Jason Statham (Snatch, Revolver, The Expendables) and Li Bingbing (The Forbidden Kingdom).  I’ve never been a fan of Statham’s work, but I’m hoping that MEG is more than just another action yarn in the deep blue sea.

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Star Trek makes it to my wish list this year as well.  I haven’t watched Star Trek: Discovery other than the first episode that aired on CBS Television and probably won’t see it until it comes out on Blu-ray and the fan series Star Trek Continues ended last month, so I don’t have a whole lot of new Trek content to look forward to except possibly reading a Trek book or comic.  My wish is that CBS and Paramount come to their senses and loosen up the tight reins they’ve placed on fan produced shows.  Star Trek Continues was a brilliant show and it will be sorely missed.  Don’t let the good guys suffer for the actions of a greedy few.  I guess I’ll just watch some reruns of classic Trek until something new comes along.

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My final wish is that all of you have a Merry Christmas.  I’ll probably do at least one more post this year for the upcoming Star Wars film, and possibly an End of the Year review.  Until then, I want to say that I appreciate each and every one of you that read my posts.  May all of your Christmas wishes come true!

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It Will Continue In Our Hearts

Second Star To The Right

Star Trek Continues is one of my favorite Star Trek productions, professional or fan-created.  If you are a regular reader, you know just how much I love this show.  If you’d like an idea of just how much I love STC, read my old post here.

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This particular post isn’t a happy one.  Nope, it’s very sad.  STC has ended its run and I don’t know what to do.  Vic Mignogna and company have crafted what I believe to be the greatest fan production of any series ever and now it is done.  The show’s finale, a two-parter entitled To Boldly Go ties up the original series and connects it to Star Trek:  The Motion Picture.  I won’t spoil it, but know that it is a tearjerker in more ways than one.  It was emotional for me because it signals the end of the series, but many of the things that happen in this particular episode made me cry as well.  You can check it out as well as all of the other episodes at this link.

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I’m proud to have been a supporter of and donor to this series.  I genuinely believe that everyone involved put their heart and soul into the production and it shines through with each episode.  The attention to detail is mind blowing.  The costumes are perfect.  The music fits right in with the music from the original series.  The sets are bright and alive. Each episode leaves me wanting more.

The show also has an excellent cast including Mignogna as Captain Kirk, Todd Haberkorn as Mr. Spock, Chuck Huber as Bones, Chris Doohan as Scotty, and Kim Stinger as Uhura.  New characters were also added to the series including Dr. McKennah (Michele Specht), Lt. Smith (Kipleigh Brown), and Lt. Drake (Steven Dengler).  The addition of these and other characters only adds to Star Trek’s legacy.

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The series also has a long list of  excellent guest stars that includes Clare Kramer, Lou Ferrigno, Gigi Edgley, Amy Rydell, Fiona Vroom, and Michael Forest.  The Enterprise even channeled Doctor Who with guests such as the sixth Doctor, Colin Baker, and Nicola Bryant, who happened to play one of my favorite Doctor companions, Peri.  I could go on, but you should check out the entire cast for yourself here.

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I truly will miss Star Trek Continues.  As I’ve stated in previous posts, I’ve met many of the cast and crew and none of them have disappointed me.  They care not only for Star Trek, but the fans and friends that have followed their journeys aboard the Enterprise.  I wish all of them nothing but success in their future endeavors.

As always, thanks for reading.  Be sure to check out Star Trek Continues and also check out the work of Hannah Barucky, whom I completely stole my featured image from (which was edited by James Kerwin) for this post.  I purchased one of her prints awhile back and you should too. All other photos were taken from random interwebs sites.

Live long and prosper!

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Boldly Streaming

Accessing Space

Sunday evening I, along with many others like me, settled in for an evening of television wonder that we haven’t had a fresh view of since 2005.  CBS was granting everyone the opportunity to view the first episode of their newest vision of Star Trek with the premier of Star Trek:  Discovery.

The events of the series take place roughly ten years before Star Trek: The Original Series and about one hundred years after Star Trek:  Enterprise.  A whole new batch of characters will be introduced during the series, with just a few of them getting screen time in the first two episodes.

!!There be spoilers below!!  Warning!

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Sonequa Martin-Green is the lead actress on the series.  She portrays Commander Michael Burnham.  Along for the ride in the first episode is another primary character, Science Officer Saru (the brilliant Doug Jones), the always-available-when-you-need-a-Spock-connection Sarek (portrayed by James Frain this time around), and the excellent Michelle Yeoh as Captain Georgiou.

After a brief tease of the new look Klingons (the rigidly talking T’Kuvma, portrayed by Chris Obi), we find the captain and her number one on the surface of a desert planet.  Their mission is to pop a hole in a well that has dried up in order to provide a water source to an alien race before they all die of dehydration.  This reminded me an awful lot of the Enterprise’s mission at the beginning of Star Trek:  Into Darkness where Spock freezes a volcano in order to save a race from being completely destroyed.  It also reminded me of The Waterboy.

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After successfully striking water, the duo trek off into the desert.  Burnham questions the captain’s directions as they appear to be wandering around an awful lot, but they are actually making tracks that form the Starfleet insignia and the captain references it as being a “star” to aid her ship, the USS Shinzhou, in finding their coordinates.  It’s obvious that there is a lot of trust and respect built between these characters.  This will be tested later in the episode.

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As the episode moves along, the Shinzhou pushes out to the edge of Federation space in order to investigate a damaged satellite and discover an unknown entity.  In a very Trek-like manner, interference renders the ship’s technology almost useless and Burnham volunteers to jetpack over to the entity and investigate.  Realizing that it is Klingon and then realizing that there’s a Klingon behind her as he’s about to attack, Burnham makes a dash to escape and accidentally kills the Klingon.

She is then rescued by her fellow crew members and takes a radiation-exposure forced nap for about three hours.  When she awakens, and against the wishes of her doctor, Burnham returns to the bridge to reveal her findings to the captain.

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The show then starts to pick up pace and a stand off with the Klingons begins.  The Klingons, headed up by T’Kuvma, reveal their cloaked ship and send out a beacon calling for the other Klingon houses to join with them.  It’s at this point that Sarek is called upon by Burnham for counsel.  In what seemed out of character to me, Sarek mentions giving the Klingons a “Vulcan Hello.”  This is an “attack first to establish your role” strategy that the Vulcans began to use after their initial meeting with Klingons resulted in the death of all aboard their ship.  Sure, Sarek didn’t technically tell Burnham to use this strategy, but he definitely didn’t discourage her, either.  Georgiou seeks the advice of the Federation and it is made clear to her that they should do nothing until more Federation ships arrive.

The captain and XO have a confrontation over what should be done, and in a very hard to stomach way (especially considering how the pair seemingly respect each other), Burnham uses a Vulcan nerve pinch to subdue the captain and makes an awkward attempt at firing on the Klingon vessel which, thanks to Lt. Saru confronting the XO, never comes to fruition.  Georgiou appears on the bridge, phaser in hand, reclaiming her ship.  Burnham is arrested and then a poop ton of Klingon vessels arrive on the scene and…..you have to pay to see the rest.

I left out the bits where we learn that Burnham was raised by Sarek whenever her parents were killed by Klingons and the flashbacks we get of their deaths and of Burnham attending the Vulcan Academy in order to shorten my summary, but they should be noted here as they are important to the story.

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So, what did I think of the episode?  Well, to quote Kaylee from Firefly, it was definitely “Shiny.”  It’s very obvious that a lot of money (around eight million per episode) was put into the production of the show.  The bridge is extremely slick and reminds me a lot of J.J. Abrams’ vision of the bridge from his films (all the way down to lens flares), but it also appears that the maintenance man has been slacking on the job considering how dark the bridge is all of the time.  I also liked the overall design of the Shinzhou (but not of the Klingon vessels).

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The external shots in space looked brilliant. Heavy on CGI, but still beautiful in their presentation, these shots were some of my favorite things about the show.  Overall I would give the cinematography an “A” for a solid job.

The acting was hit and miss.  Doug Jones seemed to have a solid grasp of Saru, and portrayed the character as both intelligent and skittish (with good reason).  He reminded of C-3PO, but not as mouthy.  Michelle Yeoh’s performance was okay, but her line delivery was very stiff, especially during her desert scenes with Sonequa Martin-Green.  Martin-Green’s character was all over the place.  For someone that was raised on Vulcan, she’s extremely emotional and a bit erratic.  Yes, I know that her parents were killed by the Klingons, but that doesn’t explain why someone who supposedly learned so much self control from the masters of self control would fly off the handle and attack her beloved captain.  I also didn’t care for James Frain as Sarek.  His body language hinted at, you guessed it, emotions, and I just could not fully buy into him as a Vulcan.  The Klingons were extremely stiff as well, and spoke as if they were falling down stairs and grunting with each smack on the steps.  Hopefully these misses were a result of poor direction and they were remedied in the second, pay-to-see episode with a different director, Adam Kane, at the controls.

The episode ended on a cliffhanger.  I’m one of the few people that defended the cliffhanger ending of The Walking Dead last year during the season split, but I felt that the Discovery cliffhanger was a snub at fans unwilling to pay for CBS All Access, the streaming service that will be the exclusive home of Star Trek:  Discovery in the United States for the time being.  It’s as if CBS wanted to give us a taste of the show in the hopes that we would all spring for the service to see what happens next, but what I saw wasn’t impressive enough for me to take the plunge.  I also see it as a disservice to potential new fans of Trek, as they might not want to pay for a service in order to see the rest of a series based on just one episode.  Oh, and they only gave us one episode, so that’s what my judgment is base upon.

I have a few friends that paid for the service and witnessed the second episode, but I didn’t buy into the service.  No, I’m not one of those old dusty Trekkies that demands that their Trek be free to all and I don’t judge anybody that did pay for the service.  I simply feel like CBS is trying to put the success of their three-year-old (and unimpressive) streaming service on the backs of Star Trek fans that have been with the series for a long time.  We are all well aware of how loyal Trek fans can be.  We know how finicky they can be as well.

There will always be hardcore fans that will accept and love any Trek put in front of them.  I can see the CBS heads sitting in a room envisioning the stereotypical Trekkie, living at home with his/her parents, with a pile of cash that doesn’t go to a mortgage, food, kids, or any other expenses.  It’s just sitting there begging to be spent on entertainment.

You and I know that this stereotypical vision just isn’t true for most fans of Star Trek.  I’m sure that there are plenty of Trekkies out there with expendable income, but I’m betting that the majority of them have a mortgage or rent, a car note, credit card bills, possibly a student loan, children and a spouse, or any other of a multitude of expenses that come first.  Yes, it’s just six to ten bucks a month, but $120 can be spent on things that are much more important than another streaming service.

I’ll patiently wait for the series to be released on Blu-ray or on the U.S. version of Netflix sometime in the future.  I won’t scream bloody murder if anybody spoils any episodes either.  I’m fully aware of what I’m missing out on, I just wasn’t impressed enough to pay for CBS All Access in order to see more episodes.

As always, thanks for reading.  I know that many of you have a different opinion, so please tell me what that opinion is in the comments section.

Live long and prosper.

 

 

Louisiana Comic Con 2017!

A Long Time Ago….

Almost exactly one year ago to be exact, I attended Louisiana Comic Con 2016.  Due to real life, surprises, scheduled events, and all out chaos, the very same convention became my first within a year’s time.  Now, I didn’t forget that I attended Calcasieu Serial Fest just a few weeks ago, but I don’t consider that particular event a convention.  It’s a festival, a celebration of all things cliffhanger (and I highly recommend you attend next year).  Louisiana Comic Con, on the other hand, isn’t as niche-focused.  Nope, it’s a celebration of all things geek, and the 2017 edition was just as fun as last year’s event.

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Last year’s event featured the Library Bards, and I managed to get a peck on the helmet from Bonnie Gordon (pictured above)!  That alone made 2016 a pretty special event, so 2017 had to blow the roof off of the Cajundome!  In all fairness, though, a kiss from Bonnie is pretty tough to beat, so I went into this year’s event with the hope that I’d at least have a lot of fun.  I did.

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A few months ago, it was announced that Shannon Purser (poor Barb from Stranger Things) would be attending the convention.  Since I’m a pretty big fan of that show, and really loved Barb, I was excited to attend the event.  Unfortunately she had to cancel because of some awards show (The Emmy Awards or something **sarcasm activate!**) and couldn’t make it.  While it broke my heart that my favorite best friend in all of TV history wasn’t going to be able to be at the event, I totally understood why she would be absent.

Just a few days after her cancellation, though, Louisiana Comic Con upped the ante and announced Sean Astin as her replacement.  I basically grew up watching this guy grow up on the big screen, so I was excited to see that he was added to the show.  Along with him were a number of other screen and voice actors including Barry Bostwick, Jason David Frank, Michael Biehn, Cherami Leigh, and Tiffany Vollmer.  Also in attendance were pro wrestler Jake “The Snake” Roberts, legendary screenwriter John Russo, multiple cosplayers, and comic artists such as Rob Guillory and Greg Burnham.  There were many more guests in attendance as well.

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I arrived at the event around 9:30 on Saturday morning.  There were two lines.  One was for those that had prepaid and already had their tickets and the other was for those of us who had to purchase tickets on site.  Despite being rather long, the line for “day of” purchasers moved quickly (as it did last year).  Once I got inside the venue, it was reasonably crowded, but with plenty of elbow room to go mobile when needed.  The Spidey Team, Krewe du Moon (a Sailor Moon fan/cosplay group), the 501st (Star Wars fan group), and other fan groups lined the hallway.  Corporate sponsors like 106.3 Radio Lafayette were also on hand.

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My friends from Orion’s Envy were also at the event and I finally got to check in with them for the first time in a year.  It was good to see them in full force once again!  There were also a number of excellent costumes on display at the event.  Everybody from Deadpool to Eric Cartman was represented to varying skill levels.  Some of my favorites included Aquaman, Harley Quinn, and the soon-to-be-legendary Batfam (in my featured photo).  It also looked as if the vendors were doing nicely on the main floor as well.  Toys and t-shirts were prevalent, but there were also plenty of comics vendors, custom item vendors, and Man Made Soap on hand with plenty of wares to purchase.

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There were also some excellent panels at the convention.  I attended a few of them and one of my favorites was “Basics of Modding A Nerf Gun For Steampunk with Cajun Moon Creations.”  Miss OoLaLa, Brigette Rose, was there for the assist.

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I was unable to attend the After Party on Saturday evening, and life called me back for Sunday, so I was only able to attend one day of Louisiana Comic Con.  With that said, though, I’ll definitely be back next year!  Be sure to click on the links to read about last year’s event and to show a little support to the Louisiana-based artists and cosplayers I mentioned in the post.  Also, feel free to share this post with anybody that I might have talked about here.  I’d love for them to know that this little nobody showed them some love.

As always, thanks for reading.  I don’t want to commit myself to any upcoming conventions at the moment, but I REALLY want to make it to at least two events that are coming up next year.  Those events are CyPhaCon and Southern Geek Fest.  As we get closer to those events, I’ll definitely post about them.  Until next time, stay hungry my friends!

 

 

 

“We Need No Longer Fear The Banana”

Space….The Not So Serious Frontier

I’ve never really been a fan of the work of Seth MacFarlane.  Outside of Cosmos:  A Spacetime Odyssey, there hasn’t been much that he’s cranked out over the years that I’ve truly come to love.  Yes, I’ve seen a few episodes of Family Guy, American Dad, and The Cleveland Show, and I’m aware of his work as a producer, writer, singer, and cartoonist, but his style of humor just doesn’t sit well with me.

With that being said, I was pretty excited whenever I saw the first teaser trailer for The Orville.  It looked like it might be a tongue-in-cheek nod to classic Star Trek and perhaps even Galaxy Quest.  With Star Trek:  Discovery not really impressing me with its first looks, I hoped that The Orville would fill the ever growing void in my life for decent science fiction that wasn’t all doom and gloom all of the time.

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While I’ve only seen the first episode, “Old Wounds,” I’ve already been pleased with what I’ve witnessed.  The brightly colored sets, diverse characters, humor, and cast inject some much needed happiness in a genre that seems to only get bleaker with each year. One of my biggest gripes with modern science fiction is that too much of it focuses on the negatives in society and makes those negatives even more despicable.

The Orville still seems to be willing to deal with current issues, but on a much lighter plane of existence.  The original Star Trek series gave us hope for a brighter future.  Most science fiction that has followed that series (including some episodes of the many Star Trek shows and films that followed) shattered that hope.  The first episode of The Orville tackles failed relationships, and does so with laughs and understanding.

The episode deals with Captain Ed Mercer (MacFarlane) being cautiously given command of the Orville despite having a terrible year.  At one time considered a top notch prospect for command, Mercer’s inability to come to terms with his broken marriage completely derails all of his prior successes.  Once in command, he soon learns that his first officer is none other than his ex-wife, Kelly Grayson (Adrienne Palicki).  This leads to immediate tension between the duo.  There’s so much tension that it boils over into their regular work days aboard the ship.  It even spills over into their first confrontation with a villain, the Krill race, whose looks remind me a lot of the primary villain, Krall, from Star Trek Beyond.  Whether the Krill and Krall are intentionally similar, I do not know.

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This is Krall from Star Trek Beyond.  Just wait until you see the Krill in The Orville!

As the episode played out, I saw plenty of nods to the original Star Trek series and TNG as well.  A research facility that is actually researching things for the betterment of all people, crew members that reminded me of characters such as Data, Worf, Bones, and even ol’ Tom Paris, and that light humor that seemed to bleed through every episode of the original series without getting in the way of whatever moral Gene and company was trying to get across each week.

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THE ORVILLE: L-R: Seth MacFarlane, Penny Johnson Jerald, Adrianne Palicki, Halston Sage and guest star Brian George in THE ORVILLE premiering this fall on FOX. ©2017 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: F

I’ve already grown attached to some of the characters despite only getting to know them in less than an hour.  Scott Grimes (my childhood hero from Critters) portrays Gordon Malloy, a hot shot pilot that ends up ruining his own bright career (sorta like Paris, right?) but gets a second chance on the Orville. I really enjoyed his character.  He’s the likeable jerk that I’m sure will turn into a hero sooner or later.  Then there’s Halston Sage as Alara Kitan, a member of the Xelayan race, who is extremely young (Chekov?  Maybe Wesley Crusher?) and inexperienced, but manages to save the day a couple of times.  She also has a whole Superman thing going with her strength and leaping abilities.  Then there’s Isaac (Mark Jackson), an AI that sounds an awful lot like Data.  Instead of wanting to become more human, though, he seems to be content with thinking himself better than the others.

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Yeah, THAT Scott Grimes from Critters (pictured here with the lovely Dee Wallace Stone) portrays Malloy.

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Don’t underestimate Alara.

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Isaac’s voice reminds me of Data…..a lot.

Other cast members include Penny Johnson Jerald as Dr. Finn, who has a bit of an attitude with the captain that hints at Dr. McCoy from ST: TOS, Peter Macon as the no nonsense Lt. Commander Bortus (who looks sort of like a Klingon but with the mentality of a Vulcan), J. Lee as John LaMarr, the ship’s navigator, and Victor Garber as Admiral Halsey, the man who gives Mercer a second chance after being convinced by another character in the series.

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The Orville Ship.

I also want to add how impressed I am by the production of this show.  The special effects are top notch and the music is wonderful.  It is apparent that time and care was taken with the production of the show.  That shows me that MacFarlane put everything into this show.

Will the series succeed?  In all honesty I cannot say because I’ve only watched one episode.  What I saw showed a lot of promise, but it’s going to take a few more episodes for the show to really find its groove in my opinion.  The audience should be interesting considering the fact that MacFarlane attracts fans of sophomoric shows like Family Guy and his more grounded and intelligent work on Cosmos.  I can’t wait to see the next episode and I hope that this show flourishes.

Thanks for reading my post.  If you saw The Orville and want to chime in, hit the comments section.  I’m headed to Louisiana Comic Con this weekend in Lafayette, so say hello to me if you see me at the event!  I plan on writing another post this week with more info on this event!

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May Update

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2017 has kicked my tail.  I’ve missed every single convention that I hoped to attend so far and will not make it to Southern Geek Fest, either.  Why?  I’ve been really busy with work, family duties (which I’m not complaining about), and life in general.  Money is also tight as well.  With that said, I wanted to give another push for Southern Geek Fest.

SGF has a great lineup this year, and I’m really disappointed that I won’t be making the trip east to hang with my biggest and favorite geek family.  I know that I talk about this group more than most, but they really are that great.  If you can make it to Hattiesburg, MS at the end of this month, do so, you will not regret it.

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The slideshow above is only a small sampling of the wonderful guests that will be present at SGF.  Celebrities from Clerks, Stranger Things, The Walking Dead, and comic artists will be on hand, as well as authors, pro wrestlers, and much, much more.

In other news, Star Trek Continues recently released their latest episode, Still Treads The Shadow.  If you haven’t seen this episode (or any other episode for that matter), check them out here.  There are only a few episodes remaining, so be sure to experience this brilliant fan-made production of Star Trek.

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Photo by Hannah Barucky

Oh, and that image above?  That’s a creation of the super cool Hannah Barucky.  I purchased a print from her awhile ago of Dr. McKennah (portrayed by the lovely Michele Specht).  I hope to one day meet this wonderful lady at a convention in order to thank her personally for her awesome work.  Check out her art, cosplay, and fashion work here.

Well, that’s all I have for now.  2017 has me beaten down a bit, but I’m not out!  Hopefully I will see a few of you in the real world very soon.  As always, thanks for reading!

It’s The Little Things

The D'arda Sisters and DDK!

Over many years…

Well, I didn’t get to attend CyPhaCon like I hoped thanks to the fact that real life once again swooped in at the last second and dealt me a vicious blow that kept me from much of anything over the weekend.  With that in mind, I figured that I would give all of you a glimpse into my world.  I’m literally throwing this together at my office, so don’t expect any amazing photos.

Here goes….

Collector……Hoarder……Stockpiling Fool…..Call me what you will, but I like to collect things.  I’ve collected many things over the years and I don’t see myself stopping any time soon.  Many of my things are stored away, rarely seeing daylight.  Other things, particular mini figures and a few bobbleheads, are displayed either on my shelf at home or at my office.  My office usually features my current addiction, but a few things have managed to stay put over the years that refuse to go into storage.

I have an Ozzy Osbourne bobblehead that has been in my office since I first acquired it (which was roughly at the height of “The Osbournes” fame in the early 00’s).  He has rarely been dusted or even paid much attention to since I placed him on my desk, but every once in awhile I take a look at him and smile.

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My office also features a number of recent Batman and/or DC Comics themed acquisitions such as a classic 1989 Batmobile and the recent 2016 BvS Batmobile.  I also have a ton of mini figures such as the DC Comics’ Lil Bombshells, Funko Pint Size Heroes, Mighty Meeples, and a whole host of other mini figs.

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I’m a sucker for mini figures, but I also like larger figures such as the Star Wars 6″ Black Series figures, standard sized action figures, and the 6″ DC figure line as well.  I also enjoy collecting books, music, and just about anything else I can get my hands on, as the following photos show.

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I’m also a collector of photographs and autographs.  I have binders that I keep all of my autographed photos in and even more binders that include photos that I’ve taken with both celebs and friends over the years.  One great tradition that has been going on since 2011 has been me getting a group shot with the members of Orion’s Envy.  I’ve befriended these wonderful ladies over the years and I probably have more pictures with them than I do with some of my family members!  It’s always fun to see them at conventions.

Below are a few of my photos with friends and celebs, as well as a few autographed pictures, and a special collection of most (but not all) of my photos with Orion’s Envy (and a couple with the Just Us League as well).

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As you might have noticed, my weight has greatly fluctuated over the years.  I’m constantly working on that.  In fact, if you read some of my earliest posts, I actually talk about my weight issues.

So, no CyPhaCon for me over the weekend, but hopefully you’ll accept this glimpse into my collection as an apology.  As always, thank you for reading.  I hope to see some of you out on the trail or at a convention very soon!

I’m Jealous!

Not At A Convention!

I have to admit that I am super jealous of all of my friends that have been attending conventions this year.  Many of them went to Wizard World NOLA earlier this year, but this weekend a ton of them headed over to Pensacola, FL for Pensacon!  It’s one of my wishlist conventions to attend because they seem to bring the big guns every year as far as guests go.

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You don’t know how hard it was to see my friends taking photos with the likes of Sophie Aldred (frickin’ Ace from Doctor Who!), John Wesley Shipp (The Flash, the original frickin’ Flash!), and Lita Ford (a legend in hard rock and my ex-wife in way too many dreams).  It pained me to see Ming from Comic Book Men hanging out with my friends in Southern Geek and Southern Geek Fest.  It bruised my innards whenever I saw that the Nature Boy, Ric Flair, was also a part of the festivities.

To top it all off, Pensacon had the audacity to really rub it in my face by announcing guests for next year’s event (February 23-25) including Lou Ferrigno (The Incredi-frickin’-ble Hulk), Paul Blake (gosh darned Greedo from Star Wars), former WWE star Lita (she hangs out in my dreams with Lita sometimes!), and Frazer flippin’ Hines, Jamie from Doctor Who!  Don’t you dare click here to learn about this year’s event and to keep up with what’s happening next year!  Hopefully the scheduling gods will smile upon me and I’ll get to attend this wonderful event!

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You’re probably thinking:  Ken, why don’t you just go to one of your all-time favorite conventions, CoastCon!  Brilliant idea, you!  Except for the fact that I have work scheduled for that weekend!  CoastCon truly is one of my favorite conventions.  It’s one of the oldest fan-run conventions in the southern United States and it’s celebrating forty years this year!

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This wonderful event decided to stick it to me this year, inviting some of the coolest guests that they’ve ever had like Oded Fehr.  You know this guy.  He’s killed mummies in the flippin’ The Mummy franchise, taken on zombies in the Resident Evil franchise, and dominated in Showtime’s Sleeper Cell.  To make the fact that I’m going to miss this event even worse, they’ve added awesome authors like Claudia Gray and the Gothic Queen Supreme (and Facebook friend) Kimberly Richardson!  They’ve also thrown in stuntman, actor, and all-around cool guy (and friend), John Mangus!

This excellent event is taking place March 3-5 at the lovely Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center.  Visit their webpage for more information about this great, long-running convention.

Okay, okay.  So I missed Pensacon and won’t be able to attend CoastCon.  What about something a tad more local?  CyPhaCon, perhaps?

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Yeah, it’d be awesome to attend CyPhaCon, which has consistently put on awesome events in Lake Charles, LA and will do so again from April 7-9, but work is going to prevent me from attending the bulk of the convention.  Hopefully I’ll get to visit on Saturday afternoon and meet Julian Glover (Star Wars, Game of frickin’ Thrones), Chuck Huber (Bones from Star Trek Continues and anime vocal mastermind), and the lovely Luciana Carro (Battlestar Galactica).  I’ve met Luciana at CyPhaCon before, and she’s an awesome lady.

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To really bust my chops, CyPhaCon also added the very talented Jessica Von Braun, who happens to be one of my favorite artists.  My family loves her work as well.  There’s going to be awesome tunes, awesome authors, and all sorts of cool panels to attend.  Check them out here and see what all the fuss is about.

Despite missing all or most of some of these wonderful events, the month of May has graciously offered me a small window to attend another of my favorite events, Southern Geek Fest.  This one is close to my heart, as I’ve become good friends with many of the folks that are a part of this event and love the fact that Southern Geek, a Facebook group, gave birth to this wonderful convention.

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Southern Geek Fest will feature tons of awesome artists, authors, and panels, as well as a lot of celebrity guests and cosplayers as well.  One of my favorite wrestlers of all time, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, will be in attendance, as well as Peyton Wich of Stranger Things, Victor Gischler (who has done work on titles such as Deadpool and The Punisher), and one of the loveliest, friendliest cosplayers on the circuit, Kimberly Battista.

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Oh, and rumor has it that DDK will make his triumphant return to Hattiesburg, MS once again and turn it into Hottiesburg!  Visit SGF’s webpage to learn more about the event.  I promise that you’ll have a great time!

So, I might be jealous of all my friends at the moment, but whenever I return from SGF with an autograph and photo from Hacksaw and a pic with the wonderful Kimberly Battista, we’ll see who’s jealous then!

As always, thanks for reading.  If you happen to attend any of these events, especially CyPhaCon and/or SGF, be sure to drop me a line so that we can meet in person!