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Review: ‘Alien Covenant In Utero’ VR Experience in Trinoma (May 8, 2017)

05/09/2017 Leave a comment
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Clockwise: I have arrived…at the ‘Alien Covenant In Utero’ Exhibit. | The VR Experience. | Happy smiles. | Alien Covenant in Utero poster. | D by the sign.

Before catching the advance screening of Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant, our group made it a point to drop by the ‘Alien Covenant In Utero‘ Virtual Reality (VR) Experience/Exhibit located right outside the Trinoma Cinema area.

The small exhibit featured a visual history of the Alien franchise as well as posters charting the life cycle of the Xenomorph: Starting with the Xenomorph egg, followed by the facehugger, then the chestburster[ii], and finally the Xenomorph.

But the highlight of the exhibit was the free, 360 degree virtual experience that puts moviegoers inside the body of an alien Neomorph just as it bursts from the back of Ledward.[i] Read more…

A Dying Medium: Compact Discs (May 8, 2017)

05/08/2017 Leave a comment
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Spyro Gyra’s Access All Areas (top) and Hall & Oates’ Rock n’ Soul Part 1 compact discs.

I almost forgot.

In addition to the two Takara Tomy Arts Super Figure Collection Grendizer UFO Gashapons that I lucked out in getting yesterday, I also picked up a couple of used discs: Hall & Oates’ Rock n’ Soul Part 1[i] and Spyro Gyra’s first live album entitled, Access All Areas.

These albums were without their inserts but I knew what I was holding in my hands and scooped them up right away at a fraction of the cost.

To think, this was how everyone used to listen to music.[ii]

Short history lesson 

Back in the early 90’s, Compact Discs (CD) were the thing!  A literal upgrade in quality from the bulky Vinyl, 8-track, and cassette tapes.  It was the only way to get music back then as digital downloads were still in its infancy.  CD’s also had a long lifespan–unless you left them under direct sunlight–and were reported to be good for a couple of thousand plays before encountering any problems.

Well enough of that and back to the albums that I got. Read more…

A Grendizer kind of day: Review of Takara Tomy Arts Super Figure Collection Grendizer UFO Gashapons (May 7, 2017)

05/07/2017 Leave a comment
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Clockwise: Takara Tomy Arts Super Figure Collection literature on the gashapon machine. | The Grendizer Spazer. | The Grendizer part prior to attaching it to the Spazer. | The Grendizer UFO robot pieces after I removed them from their plastic container. | Some new toys to add to my collection.

Exposure to the past

In my book, part of being a good parent is taking the initiative to expose your children to the things that you grew up with.  There are quite a few, starting with: Values, Customs, Interests, etc.

Did I say interests?

Back in the Betamax days and when I was still in single digits, I remember watching a cartoon called Grendizer[i].  It was awesome![ii]  It featured a flying UFO saucer (called Spazer) that spit out a single-pilot robot.  Much like other earth protector robots before him, Grendizer would cut up his enemies by the end of each episode.  UFO Grendizer also had cool weapons like Double SickleScrew Crusher Punch, and Space Thunder!  Lastly, the show even had Mazinger Z’s Koji Kabuto serve as a sidekick of sorts.

As I dial back my thoughts to those moments, we really had the best cartoons…with all due respect to Adventure Time, Rick and Morty, Clarence and whatever else the kids are watching these days on Cartoon Network.

Anyway, I decided to dig up those old Grendizer tapes and show them to my son.  So far, we’ve gone through 1 1/2 episodes so the jury is still out if he is going to like it as much as say The Real Ghostbusters.

Review: Takara Tomy Arts Super Figure Collection Grendizer UFO Gashapons

Read more…

Review: The Gathering 11th TAGCOM [Toys and Hobbies Convention] (April 29, 2017)

04/29/2017 Leave a comment
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Clockwise: Present and accounted for at The Gathering 11th TAGCOM (Toys and Hobbies Convention). | Looking though the lens of a toy for sale at the convention. | Photo opportunity with Justice PH. | Kong: Skull Island merchandise. | All ready for Disneyland: Some hats that we picked up. | If money were no object, I would have scooped up all of the all of the available Fallout 4 5″ Vault Boy 111 Bobbleheads in a heartbeat.  Pictured are the Melee Weapons, Strength, and Repair Bobbleheads.

I ate my words today.

What I thought would be (at the most) a half-day event–The Gathering 11th TAGCOM [Toys and Hobbies Convention]–turned into a whole day affair.

Yep.  The Fam and I ended up staying from 11 am till closing.[i]  Even I can’t believe it myself.

It was loads of fun.  Lots to see. But we were all dead tired by the end of it all.

A fun and fulfilling kind of tired.

The Sights

Despite only occupying what seemed like a very generous 3/4 of the Megatrade Hall 3, there seemed to be a little something for everyone.  Character beanies and dinosaurs aside, what stood out for me was the amount of Godzilla merchandise spread out among the vendors.  There was a ton and I’m sure they have been around, but for me, it was like they all appeared out of nowhere.

Read more…

Oh How You’ve Changed Monopoly (April 28, 2017)

04/28/2017 Leave a comment
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New Board. Old Board. Always ready for action!

It’s been about a decade since the last time I’ve rolled dice on the old Monopoly board.

A lot has changed since then.

New streets. New railways stations. New prices.  New mortgage payouts.

And after tonight a new winner in a five-year-old first time player.

Congrats Bud!

After our fun, competitive, and entertaining game; I couldn’t help but wonder: Why all the changes?

I mean, the old version has been around since the mid-30’s.  A tried-and-tested product that stood the test of time.

This will take some getting used to.

I guess when it all comes down to it, even a gaming juggernaut like Monopoly isn’t immune from the changing times.

Categories: 2017, Reviews Tags: , , ,

Kawhi Leonard, The Grindhouse, Comic Odyssey, and the Philip Tan and Elmer Santos Signing & Sketching Event (April 23, 2017)

04/23/2017 Leave a comment

Philip Tan gets the ball rolling well before his call time of 1 pm. | Philip’s three 2-hour sketches: Harley Quinn, Spider-Man, and the Dark Phoenix. | The Spider-Man sketch that Philip did for me on my Clone Conspiracy Blank Cover Variant. | Photo opportunity with Philip. | Posing for a photo with Elmer Santos. | Elmer’s Spider-Man sketch on my Champions #1 Blank Cover Variant.

What an interesting day!

Certainly one that I didn’t expect having when I woke up this morning.

Here is how things went down.

The Early Bird makes the sketch list

With Sandy’s announcement that The Hellblazer[i] creative team of Philip Tan (artist) and Elmer Santos (colorist) would be taking several sketch commissions–for free!–during their Signing and Sketch Event today, it made a lot of sense for my good friend Mark and I to make our way to Fully Booked in Bonifacio High Street before they opened at 11:00 am.

San Antonio Spurs versus the Memphis Grizzlies–a game for the ages.

Mark and I got to High Street early so we decided to head to the nearby Italiannis to catch the San Antonio Spurs and Memphis Grizzlies game.

This was a rare treat for me as I usually don’t watch television anymore[ii].  Game 4 between these two teams also served as my first game in this year’s NBA Playoffs.

And what a game it was!  As Mark and I settled into our seats, Memphis–down 2-1 in the series–had erected a formidable 10 point lead early in the fourth quarter lead by Grizzlies $153 dollar quarterback Mike Conley, Jr.

But Memphis had to give Conley a breather and almost as soon as he sat down, the San Antonio Spurs Kawhi Leonard took over and both teams battled till the end of regulation and well into overtime. Read more…