Jul 31, 2015

[Movies] I Could Never Be Your Woman (2007)

After the success of Ant-Man, a friend and I got into a weird conversation of re-examining Paul Rudd movies. The question came up if we could name movies where Paul Rudd was truly the lead actor like he is in Ant-Man, and there was a bit of a struggle there. A quick IMDb search eventually led us to conclude that at best he has been the plucky romantic interest with limited agency, or something along those lines.

Then we saw I Could Never Be Your Woman, which felt like the sort of movie that we should have remembered more since it featured Michelle Pfeiffer, but for the life of us we just couldn't remember having scene it. And he had top billing here so...how bad could the movie be?

Closer scrutiny revealed that the movie only saw a very limited release in some countries but for the most part was a direct-to-video release in most markets including the United States. I guess that explains why none of us could remember having even heard about this particular movie.

Jul 30, 2015

[TV] Penny Dreadful: Season 2

The first season of Penny Dreadful was quite the surprise since here we had quite the dramatic show with a dark, supernatural and sometimes even gothic approach to things. Most supernatural-themed shows of recent years have either gone a little campy or embraced special effects to a somewhat ridiculous degree. And while a show that embraces drama as much as this one does can't help but fall into a little indirect camp, it's still a heck of a lot more serious than most.

And so when Penny Dreadful was confirmed for a second season, I was pretty happy to hear about it. It's not necessarily my favorite show around, but it does have a distinct appeal to it that's a character and a flavor all of its own. And I feel like this second season did its best to build on the successes of the first season while making sure to indulge fans here and there.

After all, people come to this show for an experience that is practically more akin to theater at times. We come for highly dramatic dialog and some pretty intense stares and the odd bit of violence. And the tension certainly picks up in this season with the new adversaries our little party of adventurers has to face. It makes things all the better.

Jul 29, 2015

[Games] Say Bye The Villains

I've already talked about how different games by Seiji Kanai have clearly become popular and Tobie and I are not immune to this allure. After we fell in love with Love Letter, we were significantly more away about Kanai's contributions to the industry. And thus it became rather interesting to encounter other games designed by him on store shelves - and this also made them games to seriously consider.

Say Bye to the Villains first piqued our interest because (1) it appeared to be a game involving samurai and (2) it boasted of being able to support up to 8 players is something we always welcome for our game nights. And for this to be accomplished by a card game certainly had us even more curious. And so we eventually bought the game and had no major regrets since.

Jul 28, 2015

[Comics] Dollhouse Volume 1: Epitaphs

It's rather fascinating how a good number of Joss Whedon's creations have found new life in comic books. This has been especially valuable for shows like Firefly, that were perceived to have ended too soon but were sort of able to continue to tell new stories in this alternate medium. It's not quite the same as getting a new season for the original show, but it gets pretty darned close.

Yet another comiXology sale had me picking up this first volume of the Dollhouse comics, another title based on a Joss Whedon show that at least managed to get to a second season. Tobie and I were rather fond of the show and were quite curious to see where the story might go in the long run, but of course things didn't go as hoped and the show did not continue.

I've rarely dabbled in TV tie-in material for one reason or another save perhaps for the various Star Trek comics and of course the material connected to Adventure Time. So this was somewhat new territory for me, but I was eager to see what they decided to do with the characters in this story and where they'd eventually try to direct the story. This first volume is quite the meaty morsel and I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to read on beyond this book.

Jul 27, 2015

[Movies] Justice League: Gods and Monsters (2015)

The DC Universe Animated Original Movies have been an interesting little diversion in the direct-to-video market that has been doing pretty well for the company. A lot of times one rather expects them to try going back to the big screen for these animated productions as opposed to limiting them to video, but I guess they don't see a reason to rock the boat just yet. The movies are generally good with some standing out quite exceptionally here and there.

Recent productions have largely focused around the Justice League, particularly the more recent New 52 incarnation of the group. But Justice League: Gods and Monsters represents an interesting diversion since it's one of the rare instances when the movie isn't based on a previously released comic book. If anything the reverse is true here where comics are being mapped out to provide a bit more back story to the cartoon.

This one was pretty violent compared to past efforts, which felt a little surprising for a DC animated feature. But then it sort of fits the vein of the Zack Snyder movies for DC as well, so maybe it's not entirely a bad thing?

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