Friday, March 25, 2016

Flash Friday: Happy Meal Car

Happy Flash Friday everyone!  You have my wife to thank for today's update.  I don't normally go to McDonald's so if she hadn't told me about the newest promotion I would have never known it was happening.  Right now McDonald's is putting superhero themed cars into their happy meals.  They also have Barbie Spy Squad themed stuff too if that's your thing.

Anytime there is a Flash car made there is always the joke made about why the world's fastest man would need a car.  Moving past that low hanging fruit we can see they certainly picked a fast looking car for the Flash.  The red paint job has gold glitter in it, although it certain lighting you probably won't notice it.  There is printing on the sides and the roof consisting of both Hot Wheels and Flash logos.  The car does have a pull-back motor to sending it racing across non-carpeted surfaces.

The rest of the car line up consists of Superman, Batman, Aquaman, Cyborg, Green Lantern, Robin, and the Joker.  I guess because this is considered the "boy toy" that they left out Wonder Woman.  I found it strange that they include a single villain to go with the seven heroes.  Finally if you need one or more of these in your collection, remember that McDonald's will sell you the toy without having to eat their food!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

X-Wing: The Ghost

The Star Wars cartoon Rebels is a big, big hit in my house.  It shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone that knows me that I love the main ship on the show.  When the first images were released I didn't care for it.  The odd angles and design elements shoved together were a little off-putting.  As I watched the pilot episode I quickly grew to love the design and watching the ship in action.  I was extremely excited when Fantasy Flight announced that they were creating the Ghost for use in their table top miniature game, X-Wing.

For those unfamiliar with X-Wing: The Miniature Game is game where players form small fleets of ships representing the Empire, the Rebellion, or a criminal faction known as the Scum.  Players maneuver their ships in space combat and try to either fulfill some scenario based objective or just try to eliminate the other player's ships.  Today's update is going to really talk about how the Ghost preforms in game.  I haven't had the change to even use it once yet.  The set comes with enough pieces and cards that it will take a few games before I really get a good feel of the piece.

What I wanted to show off was just how nice the model looks.  The Ghost is huge compared to other ships and the small details really shine through on it.  The package comes with both the Ghost and the Phantom but I've also used an A-Wing in one of the pictures to show off just large it is.  Unlike Warhammer, X-Wing miniatures come pre-painted.  I've heard about other people having issues with badly painted pieces but I've never seen it.  The paint on the Ghost looks far better than I could have put together.

The surprising thing is that the model is hollow.  When looking at it you expected it to have some weight to it.  The model is super light, which is a good thing considering its size.  It already has to use a different flight stand than the other ships if it weighed more it would have to use something even larger.  I should point out that the Phantom doesn't actually dock into the Ghost model.  Instead the Ghost is sculpted to already have a Phantom back there.  Expect another Ghost article in about a month from now once I've gotten to do more than fly it around my kitchen making "pew pew" laser sounds.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Iron Fist Teaser

With the release of Daredevil's Season 2 we started getting a lot of information about the other upcoming shows.  Luke Cage got a release date and a teaser trailer.  Iron Fist got a confirmed star and this image.

I'm beyond excited.  This image is also a reminder that I need to continue my Iron Fist 101 series, so I'm announcing that it will be returning in April.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Baloo and Bagheera?

C'mon Baggy, get with the beat!

There are some insane deals on Disney Infinity figures right now.  Best Buy has some figures marked down to 5 dollars and most of the others down to 9.  In addition to that a lot of the discs are also half priced.  Toys R Us has buy one, get one for a dollar on all of there figures.  I had to get Baloo because Jungle Book is my favorite Disney movie.  As soon as my son saw Black Panther something clicked in his soul and he needed to have him.  When we got the two of them home I realized just how appropriate the paring was.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Flash Friday: Lego Mighty Micros

Happy Flash Friday everyone!  I had really wanted to post this last week, but sadly real life kept me from getting my order on time.  Ultimately that may have been a good thing, because I’ve had more time put my thoughts together.  Mighty Micros are a new Lego line that started showing up on store shelves this month.  For around 1o dollars you get two very small, almost kart-like vehicles and two mini-figures with short leg pieces.  The current wave contains both Marvel and DC characters; although we’ll be talking about the Flash set today.

The first thing you have to remember is these are small sets.  To get two vehicles at such a low price point they had to keep them pretty simple.  The Flash set totals 88 pieces.  That’s 88 pieces split between two figures, two vehicles, and accessories.  Flash gets a tiny race car and Captain Cold a tiny snow plow/tractor.  The Flash symbol on the front of his car is a printed piece; in fact there are no stickers at all in the set which was a really nice surprise.  Both vehicles in this set are pretty sturdy and roll around well.  If you have the urge to really build something out of Lego, these aren’t going to satisfy that, but they are fun to zoom around your desk.

For a Flash fan that isn’t normally interested in Lego this seems like a great set to grab to get a cheap Captain Cold and Flash figure.  Before this Flash was in two sets a Riddler themed set that ran about 20 dollars and the Grodd Goes Bananas set that was about 60.  Captain Cold was only available in the 60 dollar set.  The Might Micro figures are not the same as the ones that came in those sets though.  Besides the fact that the figures come with the short legs that are usually used to represent Lego children the face and chest designs are almost more simple and cartoonish.  The full sized Flash figure has a smaller lightning bolt symbol and detailed muscles on his chest print.  The Might Micro has a much larger symbol and belt print. 

The other big difference in the Flash figures is the face.  The full sized Flash has visible eyes when his mask is on.  The Might Micro has white eyes.  Between the white eyes and the split belt I can’t help but feel the figure was influenced by the Bruce Timm Justice League run.  I don’t have any facts to back that up, it just seems likely.

Much like the Flash, the two Captain Colds are very different.  Let’s talk cold guns first.  The full sized gun is a gigantic collection of thrown together pieces that in my opinion tries to do too much.  The entire lower section cold be left off and it would only improve the look.  The Might Micro cold gun is a ray gun with a few clear blue bricks attached to it.  The large Captain’s torso is done very realistically while the Micro’s is again cartoony and simplified. 

The full sized Captain Cold’s face was always a little wrinklier than I wanted, but was otherwise very good.  The Micro version is cartoony but isn’t so over the top.  Regardless of the design, both figures are instantly recognizable as the captain.  The parka hood on both figures is identical.

The Mighty Micros are a very fun line.  At the price it’s hard not to recommend them.  But I did want to show off the differences between the minifigures. 

Friday, March 11, 2016

Slight Delay

I had a great Flash Friday planned out but my order didn't come in on time and it left me high and dry.  Next Friday expect a lengthy update.  Sorry the mess up.

Next week will have some more Lego related content so I hope you haven't gotten tired of seeing all my bricks.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Lego Hex Girls

Yesterday’s update was about a Lego version of Rude Boy and the Ska-Tastics. Tthose familiar with Scooby Doo Mystery Incorporated may have been wondering where the musical counterpoint to the undead skankers were.  So today I present a Lego version of the Hex Girls.  To be honest, the Hex Girls were originally the only band I was going to create in Lego form, but as I started working on them I decided it would be fun to recreate both bands in the episode Dance of the Undead.

 Much like the Rude Boy display this stage is modeled more to represent the theme of the band than it is an accurate depiction of the rooftops used in the episode.  This one is still a work in progress too.  The two bright red areas have changed a couple of times and I have the pieces for two more versions.   Dusk, the drummer, also has the wrong hair piece.  The blonde pigtails that I need won’t be available until September when series 16 of the Collectable Minifigures is released.  It’s hard to see in photos, but the stage actually has a clear red line bordering the edge.  It helps to offset all the black and I love the look of it.

I spent a ton of time obsessing over how to bring the Hex Girls into Lego form.  The first thing I had to figure out was the version.  In the classic Scooby Doo look they all wear vampire fangs.  Luna, the keyboardist, has a skin color that seems to change a little between appearances too.  Because I love Mystery Incorporated I decided to do that version.  Even using that as a guide the girls changed up their appearances a few times in their two episodes.  As much as I wanted them there was no way I could make the Dia des los Muertos versions with stock Lego parts. 

Once I figured out faces and hair that would work I had to figure out torso and legs.  Finding a perfect match for these things was sadly impossible unless I wanted to print my own stickers.  So I really picked things that I thought would match, even if it isn’t a perfect representation of what they wore on the episodes.  I’d like to do a Crush minifigure to represent Daphne when she joins the band, but I don’t even know where to start because of how little she wore.  If I ever figure it out I’ll post an update here.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Lego Rude Boy and the Ska-Tastics

I’ve been very open about my love for the show Scooby Doo: Mystery Incorporated.  I honestly think it is one of the best written cartoons I’ve ever seen.  One episode in the second season (Dance of the Undead) introduces Rude Boy and the Ska-Tastics as the monster of the week.  The back story is that Rude Boy and the Ska-Tastics were a one-hit wonder that failed to catch on.  The group faked their own deaths in order to take a year off and write the perfect song.  The perfect song actually took them 30 years and when they were ready to come back they realized the ska movement was dead.  So they dressed as zombies and infused their music with voodoo to turn everyone that listened to them into dancing zombies. 

When the Scooby Doo Lego sets were released last year I immediately started thinking of other things from the shows that I wanted to see put into Lego form.  Rude Boy and the Ska-Tastics were one of those things.  The first thing I have to say about it is that the stage isn’t show accurate.  In Dance of the Undead the band is playing on a rooftop with a large checkered banner behind them.  I knew I’d never be able to do their logo correctly; so I did a checkered floor instead.  I was able to keep the coffin backdrops, so I was pretty happy about that.  I added a few skulls for some additional flair.  It doesn’t look like a screenshot from the show, but I think it fits the characters.

You’d have to really look closely at the picture to notice, but it also isn’t finished.  Despite the big bags of Lego bricks I posted yesterday I’m still missing a number of tiles that I need to complete the stage.  Those will be fixed after I make my next order. I somehow mixed up the drummer and the keyboardist in this picture, something that probably no one else besides me would ever notice.  That one is an easy fix that will happen as soon as I finish writing this.  I'm pretty happy with how the band translated into Lego.  Obviously there are repeated pieces between the band members.  Sticking with official Lego parts didn’t leave me a whole lot of options to work with when I needed Zombies in suits.  I was happy that I was able to get the two different heads and bodies to split up between the four figures.  They really would have looked like clones if they all had the same head and clothes.  

This mini-Lego week continues tomorrow with another original build and then a Lego Flash Friday to end the week.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Lego Brick Haul

I've been spending too much time on  If you haven't heard of the website before Bricklink does two things.  It is an resource for finding Lego parts.  Every piece and color variation are cataloged there and most of the pieces are accompanied by pictures.  It can be a huge help when planning build projects or when checking to see if certain part/color combinations even exist.  In addition to showing you the parts that are out there, you can also buy them.  The site allows users to set up their own resale shop.  The site makes it very easy to find who has the parts you're looking for and directs you right to their store.  It makes it way too easy to drop a bunch of money by filling up your cart.

The pictures included today are from my two latest Bricklink hauls.  It doesn't look too exciting now, but these are some pretty important parts for four different projects that I'm currently working on. Two of those projects will be complete enough that I feel comfortable showing them off this week.  They aren't 100% where I want them yet, I have to order a few parts for each display.  On top of that one of the hairpieces I had to use is completely wrong and the correct one won't be available until September. The other two projects need a lot more work.  I guess what I'm saying is expect a lot of Lego content over the next couple days/weeks.

Friday, March 4, 2016

NPR Tiny Desk: Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats

For the past few months I've been super into Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats.  I first heard them on a local radio station.  Their music didn't fit the format at all but I was immediately blown away by the powerful vocals and amazing horn section.  S.O.B. quickly became one of my favorite songs and I dove into the rest of the music the band released.

Because the songs are still stuck in my head I wanted to post up a few of the videos here.  While searching through YouTube I found that I had somehow missed their appearance on NPR's Tiny Desk Concerts.  So instead of posting a handful of videos I give you one 15 minute plus one.  Hopefully you enjoy them as much as I do.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Scooby Doo and the WWE

So last night I ran to Twitter and laid out the plot to a sequel to Scooby Doo Wrestlemania Mystery movie.  Someone had mentioned the movie early that morning and then I couldn't get my idea for a sequel out of my head.  So during a night of everyone being political I carpet bombed Twitter with my 12 part story.  It's hard to get a lot of information out there when you're worried about character limits.  So instead of letting all that brain power go to waste, I'm reposting it here where it is easier to read.  Of course this is all made up in my head, there is no chance in hell of this story becoming real.

The film opens to a shot of Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins wrestling in WWE city. Fog rolls in, there is a ghostly flash, and the sounds of a fight. When the fog clears the ring is empty. Other wrestlers look around shocked.  Then there is a quick cut to the theme song.  After the theme we cut to the Scooby gang showing up to WWE City.  After all their help the last time, John Cena called them to help look into the missing wrestlers.  When the gang walk into the training center they see Miz practicing with Kalisto.  Suddenly a ghostly Roddy Piper appears.  He taunts the wrestlers before smoke fills arena. When the smoke clears the Miz is gone.  

In the confusion the lights go out and the Wyatt family arrives by lantern light.   Bray cuts a promo how he is the true evil and how his family will be taking over the WWE.  Luke Harper makes faces at Shaggy and Scooby, scaring them while Bray talks.  Meanwhile Eric Rowan wordlessly stares at Velma.  When the Wyatts leave Cena, Kalisto, and Paige offer to help the gang investigate the ghosts and the missing wrestlers.  Everyone was creeped out by Wyatt's and Shaggy and Scooby are sure that they are behind the missing wrestlers.

As the team look for clues the pattern repeats itself.  Ghosts of past wrestlers show up, taunt the living, and then disappear with current wrestlers.  Then the Wyatt family show up saying how they are going to take over WWE City.  Everyone is getting worried and the big WWE Championship match is coming up, because someone will have to face Bray.  When Paige is kidnapped the Hex Girls quickly arrive to help.  Because of course the Hex Girls are friends with Paige.

The night of the big match arrives.  It will be John Cena versus Bray Wyatt and the winner will get the championship belt.  But before the match Cena is attacked by the ghost of Andre the Giant!  Before the gang can save him he disappears.  The WWE is terrified the Wyatts are going to capture the belt and only midcard wrestlers are left to challenge him.  Before any of the other wrestlers can step up, the Hex Girls volunteer a plan.  Using their magically infused rock and roll they summon the Undertaker.

The Undertaker begins to fight Bray Wyatt when the ghost of the Ultimate Warrior arrives.  But the Scooby gang have an elaborate trap to catch the ghost this time.  Except Luke Harper scares Scooby and the trap is disrupted letting the ghost go free.  The rest of the Wyatt Family tries to interfere in the match but the Hex Girls fend them off.  Scooby and the ghost end up crashing down onto Bray Wyatt letting the Undertaker pin him one, two, and three. 

The ghost is quickly unmasked to find Damien Sandow!  Banished to the midcard, Sandow thought he could get a title shot by kidnapping all of the higher ranked Superstars.  He used his acting ability to impersonate all of the past wrestlers.  He would have gotten away with it too if it wasn't for those meddling kids!  All of the kidnapped wrestlers were stashed under the ring, because that’s the kind of silliness that would fly in a movie like this.  The newly crowned champion Undertaker scares Scooby as everyone else watches and laughs.  After staring at Velma all movie Eric Rowan shows up and gives her a flower, obviously geniuses can recognize each other.  Cut to credits and the theme song.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Detroit Grooming

On a website dedicated to comics, games, and booze we don't usually spend a whole lot of time talking about hygiene or style.  I've been using some products lately that I felt deserved mention through.  Over the years on the site I've grown out a few playoff beards.  The one I'm rocking now was born more out of being too lazy to shave.  Somehow beards a big conversation starter for guys, because I've had a lot of people asking me questions.  The biggest is, "how do I keep my beard from itching?".  The simple answer is shampoo.  If you're willing to spend a little more time taking care of yourself I recommend you check out Detroit Grooming.

Detroit Grooming does offer shampoo just for your beard which works out great for me since I shave the rest of my head.  Lots of people don't think to shampoo their beard.  It's hair, it still needs to be clean. In addition to that they also offer beard oil.  Beard oil moisturizes the hair and the skin underneath.  It helps keep the beard soft and smelling nice.  I've been using the Corktown oil for three months now and it's made a noticeable difference in the look and feel of my beard. 

If you're looking for the opposite of growing beards Detroit Grooming has a large number of shaving goods.  They carry safety razors and straight razors.  I haven't gotten brave enough to shave my head with a safety razor, but that day may come.  It isn't just the razors though, they have all sorts of brushes, creams, gels, etc.  Check out Detroit Grooming.  If you've just been grabbing the cheapest thing you can find in the Target aisle the price will surprise you a little, but the extra quality is worth it.  There are a number of grooming kits that will get you started.


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