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G.I.Joe (Retaliation): Terrible, Awful, Horrible

In various reviews and editorials over the last couple years I have mentioned how much I am a G.I.Joe fan, going back like seventeen years or so now. I used to love playing with the action figures, and watching the cartoons, and they were a huge part of my childhood. When I first heard of an actual live-action G.I.Joe movie, I was pretty excited, because I really, really wanted to see all those characters come alive on the big screen. But after seeing the movie, I could not have been more disappointed. It was a terrible movie that was barely any good at all.

And then last year we had the sequel, which had already been delayed for several months. I was cautious about it, hoping against hope that it would turn out to be a better movie than its predecessor. The trailers certainly looked halfway decent. But once again, the reality went completely south of my expectations. If you ask me which was the worst movie of the year, it was definitely G.I.Joe: Retaliation.

Note: This review contains spoilers for both G.I.Joe movies.

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Comics Picks of The Week 29.01.2014

Not as busy a week as the last but fairly busy nonetheless. The new creative teams on various ongoing titles continue to go strong, particularly Justice League Dark and Witchblade while some of the newer titles like Black Science continue to be exception, so that’s one thing that I really liked about this past week. January in particular has been a really excellent month of comics what with Marvel’s full-on All-New Marvel NOW! launch and some really good issues for DC’s Forever Evil event.

Just one graphic novel again this week, the Lee/Buscema magnificence that is Silver Surfer: Judgement. I was meaning to read at least one more, but time wasn’t on my side and I missed out. Hopefully the new month gets off to a good start.

Anyway, here’s another edition of this new feature. Full reading list, as always, is available here and all my comics reviews are available here.

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Serenity: Leaves On A Wind #1 (Comics Review)

A few years there was this out-and-out space opera science fiction show called Firefly. It didn’t last long, only like half a season or something, but in the years since its untimely and abrupt cancellation, it has become one of the great cult classic television shows. Fan reaction to the show was so severe that Joss Whedon eventually came back to do a movie, Serenity, to tie off some of the loose ends that were left open. I saw all of it in my college years, and I remember that it was a really good show and movie. I certainly enjoyed both. So when Dark Horse announced last year that they were going to continue the story in a comics series, I was very ecstatic.

Written by Joss Whedon’s brother Zack Whedon, and drawn by Georges Jeanty, this issue is everything I could ask for, story-wise. It carries on from where Serenity left off and it lays some really good groundwork for what happened afterwards, since in the timeline, eight months have now passed since the truth about the Reavers was exposed in the movie. Art-wise though, I have my reservations, because most of the characters look nothing like how they are on the show/movie. I mean, I realize that there would be differences, but the differences here are on the order where I can’t even recognize them!

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NANP: On Choosing Names

Joining me today on the blog for Names: A New Perspective is one of 2013’s biggest debut authors, Jason M. Hough. Published by Del Rey Books/Random House, his Dire Earth Cycle trilogy is about a post-apocalyptic world brought on by the advent of an alien space elevator in Darwin, Australia in the near future. I’ve only read the first two books so far, The Darwin Elevator (review) and The Exodus Towers (review), but I have been impressed by both, and The Darwin Elevator even made my “Best Debuts of 2013” list. Both books are really good explorations of a human society that is struggling to survive in the face of a Resident Evil style viral epidemic and dwindling resources while at the same time also riven by the base natures of individuals who care only about power. I would recommend both books highly and will say that whatever Jason puts out next, I’ll definitely be reading it. In the meanwhile, while I figure out when to read the concluding novel in the trilogy, The Plague Forge, here’s what Jason has to say on the topic of names.

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Firefly Rewatch Eps 1-2 (TV Show Review)

Firefly is one of those TV shows that became a cult classic after it was prematurely taken off air. It struggled with ratings and viewership while it was on air and when it was cancelled, fans began to come out of the woodwork in support of it. Its an interesting phenomenon. Particularly since fan response eventually got Joss Whedon to make a movie that closed off some of the plots that had been carried on the series from episode to episode.

I first saw the show some seven or so years ago, and I was pretty impressed with it. It did quite a few things that I didn’t expect of it, and it was pretty unique in the end, with some really great characters and plots. Not to mention some of the mysteries that the show created. It was great fun and just out of some strong nostalgia, I decided to watch it again, last week. I also wanted to see how the show would hold from those early days, and I must say that it holds up remarably well.

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