Blog Summary

A blog for poetry, prose, and pop culture.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Movie Time: Rewind: His Girl Friday

Hey all,

In this month's edition of the rewind, I wanted to go back to a comedy. I've highlighted two of my favorite comedian (teams) in Buster Keaton and the Marx Bros., so I thought it fitting to head back to the well once more with Cary Grant. Grant was the first actor who could really do every genre of film. Stars like Gary Cooper, Clark Gable, and Errol Flynn were primarily action adventure or dramatic actors. Even James Cagney, probably the most diverse actor of the 1930's was mostly known for his tough guy gangster roles. Grant broke in with comedy, with his background in Vaudeville and theatre to give him the time and pacing he would use so well throughout his career.

Grant was the first big budget actor not afraid to poke fun at his image, because even Grant new that his Cary Grant persona was an image. The truth is though that Grant owed a great deal to the director of this month's film, Howard Hawks. Grant made three films in 1939, of which I highlighted in my spotlight on 1939 several months ago. Gunga Din (an action epic) In Name Only (a drama) and Hawks action adventure Only Angels Have Wings. By 1940, Hawks knew only one actor capable of handling his new comedy, Cary Grant. Together they made one of Grant's top 5 films in His Girl Friday.

First off, let's highlight Howard Hawks. The 1930's, 40's and into the 50's were punctuated by many great directors. John Huston, John Ford, Billy Wilder, Hitchcock, but all those directors were known for primarily one genre. Hawks was a master of every type of film, whether action, comedy, gangster or pirate, western or musical, he did it all. To name just a few, Red River, el Dorado, Hatari! (all with John Wayne) Bringing Up Baby (with Grant and Katherine Hepburn) Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Monkey Business (with Marilyn Monroe) Scarface with Cagney and The Big Sleep with Bogart and Bacall. This guy did it all and made a lot of really great films.

But I digress, back to His Girl Friday. The basic story is that a newspaper editor (Grant) runs into his ex-wife and ex-star reporter the day before she is to be re-married. He then spends the rest of the film trying to woo her back into the life they once shared, but she claims to want a life as a real woman and not a newspaper woman. During the film, which takes place over the course of a single day, they also get embroiled in the plot of a wrongfully accused murder, and the two attempt to clear the charges of the accused before its to late.

The film was based on a played call The Front Page, but after a reading Hawks bought the rights from eccentric filmmaker and aviator Howard Hughes, recasting the second lead as a lady. The film has almost no score, just in the first minute and in the last 2 minutes, using it's dialog and the actors to create the real life environment.

This is also the first film to feature overlapping dialog, where each actor speaks over the others lines. Before this, one actor would finish their line, then the other would read theirs. With His Girl Friday, the attempt was to make the speech seem like real people were talking, and it cultivates in a whip fast delivery from the actors. Grant co-stars with Rosalind Russell, on loan to Warner Bros. from MGM. Russell nails the dialog ans spitfire nature of the fiery reporter. Grant is at his usual best playing the suave and funny editor, and the two have great chemistry. Aided in no small part to the large amount of improvisation the two brought to the roles. Hawks allowed the actors great leeway in creating their character and it pays off. Russell even hired personal script writers to help her in her improv and give her more clever ad-libs to keep Grant on his toes.

Honestly, this is just a great film. This is Cary Grant's best comedy, and next to perhaps North By Northwest, my favorite Grant film (though To Catch a Thief and Charade are just as close to perfection) I promise that you will not be disappointed. From Warner Bros studios, with director Howard Hawks and stars Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell, 1940's His Girl Friday.

End of Line.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Ocean of One

Hey all,

A quick poem inspired by the beaches of San Diego, though written from home. I wanted to do some environmental writing while on vacation. I had some relative success with several poems in that format over last years vacation, writing 3 or 4 poems on each one of my trips out of town. I didn't do that this year, though I might try once more this weekend as I'll be helping to celebrate a friends birthday.

The point is, this was a poem topic, the beach, that I wanted to write about while in San Diego, but I just felt like trying it out even though I didn't go there. I'd love to hear some feedback. Thanks for reading!

Ocean of One

Grains of sand between my toes,

And the salty breath the ocean blows.

Walking down the coastline beach,

Waves cresting unto the breach.

The smell of salt, the taste of sea,

There is no place else I'd rather be.

Along the coast among the surf,

Hand in hand, smiles of mirth.

The water laps upon our feet,

Hands held tight, our hearts complete.

The dawning sun breaks the sky,

Slowly lowering to the sand we lie.

The waves crest over our lying forms,

A raging current inside that storms.

The ocean moves, our love a tide,

Washing away to what beneath resides.

The sound of surf and crashing waves,

An echo of love, our heart behaves.

Lying together our face to the sun,

My hand in hers, my ocean of one.

All of the Earth is covered in life,

Yet my feelings for you are ever so rife.

Bleached from the sun and bronzed of it's rays,

Together with you, a perfection of days.

End of Line.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Flash Fiction: Under a Dead Sun

Chapter 25

Billy fired off shot after shot, until only the empty clicks of his Colt sounded.

" KATEE! We have ta get the fuck out of here! We're gonna be overrun!"

Katee blasted another creature crawling through the window and looked to Billy.

"Where are we suppose ta go? The whole damn town is swarmin' with these things!"

" Make fer the livery stable. We can whole up in the loft until we figure out what ta do. Grab the rifle and the scattergun and follow me."

Billy slapped the six shooter into his holster and grabbed one of the broken tables. Positioning it like he shield he barreled through the front entrance. He crashed into another creature as he approached the swing saloon doors. The two tumbled out into the street Billy landing hard on the best. Pulling a piece of the table's leg free he drove it into the monster's flapping mouth. Reaching for another long splinter of leg he brandished it like a club as the pair headed down the thoroughfare towards the livery. Swatting any creature that got to close the neared the doors of the structure, Billy heard shots from behind. Shoving Katee in front of him he looked over his shoulder.

From the roof of the General Store, he saw Sheriff Root and the store's owner, Reny Cargill, providing cover.

" C'mon Billy, they can't hold them off for long."

Billy pulled the doors to the Livery open and shoved Katee in ahead.

End of Line.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Comic Con 2008: Day 4: Fallout

Hey all,

Comic Con 2008 has come to pass and we are all safely home now. Sunday was a perfect end to the con.

I spent about 2 hours passing out fliers for Matt and Jason's new book, Harry Walton: Henchman for Hire that will be dropping from Image later this year. It was great to be able to do my small part in helping out my friend and anything that I can contribute to means just as much to me as it does to them. I feel like their success in some small way is also my success. You can't help but be emotionally invested in a person's success after over 18 years of friendship. Especially when it means that much to the other person.

I also managed to do a few things for myself, meeting artist Frank Kozik and having him do some work for my DIY Munny. It is awesome! I'll be posting some pictures from Comic Con over the next week or so with some cool captions. Staring with some pics of my DIY!

I did think that I would highlight the top 5 things i got out of Comic Con this year.

1- Wacthing Jason do a signing for a real published book. I was both a sense of honor and awe that someone I knew helped to create something that has been a part of my life for so long. Every comic book fan dreams of one day making a book, I watching him do that allowed me a small glimpse into something that I thought I'd never know.

2- Meeting Jason's friend Will. He was just super nice and fun guy to hang out with. It's not that often you meet a really cool and genuine guy that you can call a friend after such a short time.

3- Pulling in all that sweet vinyl. Between the DIY Munny from so many of my favorite creators and getting to talk to them, it was just cool. To top it off knowing that regular Kid Robot contributor Attaboy is designing my own person Mini Munny is just to surreal. I posted some pics of my DIY up top.

4- Getting not one but two awesome Dazzler sketches. Matt and Jason drew one up for me that I am proudly keeping near my workstation. As well as one of my favorite comic artists, Phil Noto, who sketched out one for me on Bristol board. That was just the icing on the cake.

5- The announcement that they are making and have footage of Tron 2. I love Tron and the fact that 2009 will see a theatrical sequel fills me with more excitement than the impending Lord of the Ring prequels and Harry Potter sequels combined. And I love those 2 franchises. Please God, don't let this be bad.

Anyway that was the big hit out of Comic Con 2008. Check back in over the next few days for more updates, including flash fiction, my rewind pick, and a possible poem. Thanks for reading guys.

End of Line.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Comic Con 2008: Day 3!

Hey all,

Well day 3 is in the bad and it was packed! The best part of today was the day we decided to do signing lines.

I got to meet several artists and have them work on my DIY Munny, including Gary Baseman, Buff Monster, Attaboy, MAD, Mad Barbarians,Touma, James Jean, and Tara McPherson. I am going to try to get Frank Kozik to do something tomorrow and that should about finish up any blank spots on the Munny.

I also picked up a few shirts, including a great workshirt by Bawidaman, a fantastic pin up artist, a Tara McPherson shirt, and a new Batman logo shirt. Overall a very positive day. Oh I also got an exclusive Buff Monster release signed. It was cool!

The best part of the day was passing out flyers for Jason and Matt (Matt and Jason's) new book from Image Comics, Harry Walton: Henchman for Hire. The book is about a professional henchman and his trials as just a regular guy who is trying to make a living a from henching. Overall I think it is a very solid piece and I hope to see these guys in a third book sooner rather than later.

Later in the evening we watched some of the annual Masquerade. A collection of over 40 contestants with some staggering costumes we took a bunch of pictures that I will try to post up. Overall I took a bunch of pictures and I thought maybe I'll do a photo dump on the blog and add some funny captions. There are some pretty wild and weird choices that could be good fun to see over the next month or so.

Anyway it is hard to believe that Comic Con is almost over! Just one more day to go and I need to be up early so I'll post the final days recap in a day or so.

Thanks for reading and happy conning!

End of Line.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Comic Con 2008 Day 2

Hey all,

Today was a really good day.

The best news coming out of con is that Jason got a second book picked up. Called Harry Walton, Henchman for Hire, it details the trials and tribulation's of a guy who works as a professional henchman for supervillians. Teaming with up series artist Matt Hebb, I think it is a fun and different book that will be published by Image Comics in September. I am so happy for him.

In terms of purchases, things went a little light. I did get some sweet sketches done. First off, I am working on getting a Do it Yourself Munny and having many well known artists doodle on it. It is coming along great and I cannot wait to post a completed picture with it. I also plan on doing some random con photos where you all can see some of the things that I see. It's weird that after my 16th year of attending this con, I take a lot of things at face value that many people would probably snap a lot of pictures at. I hope to upload some after I get home.

I also managed to get a limited edition Joe Ledbetter release that was signed. It was a great find. Jason and Autumn have cleaned up on exclusive Buff Monster vinyl toys, getting a limited 1 of a 100 release, as well as some exclusive New York City Con exclusive releases that carried over. Oh, AND a limited clear release! Crazy!

I got a great sketch by artist Phil Noto, who has a very old style 60's vibe to his illustrations.He sketched an awesome Dazzler, which I am very happy with. Tomorrow is another big day, hopefully with more updates and signings scheduled.

Oh there was also a few con announcements.
Footage of Tron 2 was shown in the convention hall, which I can't wait to find online. I missed it during the first run. There is also some huge events planned tomorrow so I will keep you posted!

Thanks for reading!
End of Line.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Comic Con 08- Day 1

Hey all,

Well, we just wrapped day 1 of Comic Con, and it was fantastic. First off, lets talk about the stuff I got a big kick out of.

Technically we got in Wednesday night for preview night, where you get a 3 hour window to hit some of the boothes before anyone else who did not buy the four day pass. Fir us, this was great. We managed to pick up on several limited edition releases from some great vinyl toy makers. Jason and Autumn got exclusive releases from Buff Monster and Kid Robot. I managed to pay what would normally be a very steep price for a new Dunny from Tara McPherson that I have been wanting, but this is Comic Con so really $70.00 wasn't that bad. We also loaded up on some sketchbooks from artist Adam Hughes and picked up some other small vinyls. I even got interviewed by the television station G4, for it's Attack of the Show features, reading and reacting to some Comic Con rules for attendance with contribute Alision Haislip. It was cool, even after the 15th take!

Thursday had by far what I perceive to be the highlight for the trip. Watching my friend Jason, a man who has been so dogged and determined to break into comics, finally do a signing for his first book, Wonderdog, Inc from Viper comics. Viper made a limited edition run for Jason, series artist Matt Hebb, and writer Scott Zirkel to push at the con. It was fantastic seeing Jason get an opportunity to show everyone what kind of talent he has to offer. I was very proud to call this guy my best friend today. His unending belief and dedication to his craft really inspire me.

In other Thursday news, a ton of rumors hit the show floor. The biggest rumor is that Comic Con may be in danger of moving to another location in the coming years. Increased vendor attendance, increased convention goers, and increased interest is allegedly pushing the convention center to the limits. Cities such as Los Angeles and Las Vegas are reportedly pushing to move the $60 million dollar cash influx con brings each years to their respective cities. Though San Diego officials, staff, and many long time vendors vow to do everything in their power to keep the con here. I for one hope it stays. San Diego is Comic Con, anywhere else wouldn't be a real Con.

Other news out of the floor was brand new footage of the Hugh Jackman Wolverine film (boasting an appearance of long time X-Man Favorite Gambit) as well as more images from movies like Watchmen, The Day The Earth Stood Still, and tons more. Already we have lined up an advanced screening of the new movie Tropic Thunder Saturday and hopefully more info to be announced.

Stay Tuned and I'll let you know more of what you need to know.

End of Line.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Hey all!

I'm here in San Diego preparing for day one of Comic Con. Be sure to check in nightly for my daily updates on the whys and wherefores of what I have been up to at comic con. Tonight is preview night, so I should be back online with a great update on some of the limited edition vinyl exclusives being offered.

This is my 16th Comic Con, and I get just as excited for each one every year. Especially this year as Jason will be signing at the Viper Comics booth this year. Hell yeah, gonna get him to do some special sketching. Hello Dazzler sketch!

End of Line.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Movie Review: The Dark Knight

Hey all

So I saw The Dark Knight over the weekend and it is awesome! I may even go so far as to say that it is the best comic book movie ever made. Superb casting, excellent acting, a tight story, and incredible effects. Just overall a fantastic film that eclipses the greatness that was Batman Begins.

Picking up where the first film left off, Batman has the city gripped in fear, attacking the mob and criminals, inspiring copy cat vigilantes. The mob, pushed to the brinks by Batman's activities, are forced to turn to a psychopathic killer, the Joker, who up until that point had worked against the police and the mob. To not overly spoil the film, The Joker goes on a spree to show that everyman can have one bad day, and begins the process of breaking down Gotham City's three most important crime fighting figures, Batman, Jim Gordon, and Gotham's newest hero, District Attorney Harvey Dent.

Dent, dating Bruce Wayne's girlfriend from the first film, Rachel Dawes, has begun cracking own on the mob, with the help of Gordon and Batman. Joker begins pushing both the DA and Batman to their limits, eventually unhinging Dent, and driving Batman to the verge of quitting.

First off, let's talk casting. Bale cements his status as the top action actor in the business today. Playing the intense Batman t0 the limit. He truly is the best Batman ever to hit the screen. He manages to create a Batman who is both the intense crime fighter, and a man who is scarred by the past, wanting a normal life with Rachel, but unable to give up the Batman. Heath Ledger deserves every bit of praise in his portrayal of the Joker. Playing him as a scarred psychotic "punk rock" version of the Joker. He plays a combination of menacing and dark humor to a tee. I both laughed out loud at his actions, and was shocked by them. The supporting cast is solid character acting. Aaron Eckhardt plays Harvey Dent as both a white knight of law enforcement, but adds that subtle dark under touch that will eventually lead to him becoming Two-Face. Gary Oldman is great as Gordon, Michael Caine blends perfectly as the voice of reason and a bit of needed humor. Maggie Gllynehall is also a step up over Katie Holmes as Batman/ Bruce Wayne's love interest.

IF i had to voice a complaint, there are a few instances where the accent Bale uses is a bit over the top in his Batman persona. I can also understand some gripes about the films running time at 2 and a half hours, but I didn't have an issue wit it. Director Chris Nolan keeps the film moving, mixing action, character development, and plot advancement perfectly. One thing that my roommate pointed out was that often times you got so caught up in Ledger's Joker, that you paid so much attention to it, that you missed some of the film. There was so much pomp and circumstance surrounding it, along with Ledger's untimely death, that honestly I feel I may need to see it again to soak in the film and everyone else's actions even better.

I cannot rave enough about this film. It is my favorite movie of the year, and maybe the last few years. It is easily the best blockbuster in recent years. Heath Ledger, in my opinion, is totally deserving of the Oscars talks for his performance as well. Batman is by far the best film you will see this summer. It lives up to the hype. Check it out. The Dark Knight, with Christan Bale and Heath Ledger.

End of Line.

Friday, July 18, 2008


Hey all,

As I sat at my desk trying to write, I thought long and hard about my life. About the choices I've made and the path I took. How do you know if you made the right choice? I look to my friends and family and how they are happier than I seem to be.

I know I put a lot of stock in finding a relationship, that somehow magically I will meet someone and it will click and all my worldly problems will be solved in that instant. I know that is a fallacy, but my mind tells me otherwise. Can happiness from another person awaken happiness in myself? I don't think so.

Yet here I am in the same situation as the last time I put thought to word. No girlfriend, no confidence, and feeling like I have no hope of changing those things. How can someone love me when I can't love myself? How can someone love a person with my flaws. I know what my strengths are, and more importantly I know what my weaknesses are. For myself, I can't seem to look past my foibles, and find a deeper truth. My own superficialness prevents me from seeing the best in myself. And if I am not the best version of me, aren't there better choices out there?

Things like honor or devotion can only carry a person so far before they become weakness. Without confidence in my self, whether in looks or heart, I can't see other people finding it with in me. Yet everyday I stare at the same reflection, and follow the same routine, and yield the same results. I don't change, and the situation around me stays the same.

I find it so hard to find viable qualities in myself. I am not the best version of me. I am a lonely 31 year old single male who has never had a girlfriend, and who doesn't know how to behave around women. That though depresses me more than anything else. If I were to find a relationship, how does this make me look? Things like kissing and intimacy hold great wonder, but even greater fear. Most guys my age have been doing this half their life, and I have barely scratched the surface. What do I have to offer a woman? How can she not know she can do better when I think she can too.

I suppose writing out these fears are intended to help me confront that which I don't want to face. Even in rereading what I have wrote I still wonder if I will have a chance to live happily ever after or if I am destined for something far worse. Either way, tomorrow is another day.

End of Line.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Word Balloon: Batman: The Killing Joke, the Dark Knight Returns, and Batman: The Long Halloween

Hey all,

With July's edition of the World Balloon! should arguably highlight a great Batman book, with The Dark Knight opening tomorrow in theaters. I thought long and hard about which Batman book to single out. Of all the heroes, Batman has some of the best stories. As opposed to Superman, who many find limited by his All American Boy Scout appeal, Batman is the person anyone can be if they wanted. Batman can do a detective story, a horror story, an adventure story, psychological or straight up super hero. He has the broad appeal. With so many great trades to pick from I couldn't pick one. This article will highlight 3 different creative teams and what i think are the three most important Batman stories.

Up first is the great Alan Moore and artist Brian Bolland's Batman: The Killing Joke. Published by DC Comics in 1988, it's called the greatest Joker story ever told. It's the story of the Joker and his escape from Arkham Asylum and his quest to prove that even the most upstanding citizen can have one bad day. The book is inter cut with looks at the possible origin of the Joker, originally an engineer and struggling stand up comic who is coerced into helping two thieves rob his plant. In a disguise as the Red Hood (which the thieves make him dress as) he learns that his wife, pregnant with his child, has died in an accident, and that Batman is at the crime scene. In his attempt to escape from Batman, his falls into a vat of chemicals, which transform him into the insane Joker.

In the present setting of the book, Joker infiltrates Commissioner Gordon's house, shooting his daughter (unknowingly crippling Batgirl in the process) and kidnapping Gordon. Locking Gordon in a carnival freak show he torments him by showing him footage of his shot and crippled daughter in various states of undress. When Batman arrives and frees Gordon, Gordon wants him brought in by the book, and Batman must combat the maze of traps in his path before confronting the Joker.

Alan Moore and Bolland straight up write a perfect Joker story. Batman, the hero, is the incidental character and the true story is a look into how someone as insane as the Joker sees the world. It heavily influenced both Tim Burton's 1989 Batman, as well as The Dark Knight. I would also constitute it as my favorite Batman tale.

Up second is writer/artist Frank Miller's Batman: The Dark Knight Returns. Published by DC Comics in 1986, this four issue mini series re-introduced the world at large to the darkly psychological Batman we know today, finally breaking the camp stigma of the 1960's television series.

Set in a dsytopic "Reaganomics" future, Batman has retired from fighting after the death of the second Robin. Supervillians have long been culled, but Gotham is overrun by petty thugs and criminals. After a rehabilitated Harvey Dent resumes his criminal ways, Batman can no longer stay retired. With his re-emergence in the spotlight, he takes on a new Robin in 13 year old Carrie Kelley, a product of neglectful parents. Upon confronting Dent and the ruling band of thugs called The Mutants, the current police commissioner issues a warrant for Batman's arrest.

The Joker, who had been in a catatonic state for years inside Arkham, then escapes to confront Batman again. In their final showdown, Batman realizes that killing the Joker would have saved more lives ultimately, but he can't bring himself to do it. Instead he breaks the Joker's neck. After the Joker's expresses his disappointment in Batman, he effectively breaks his own neck framing Batman for the murder. With this information, Batman's old alley is drawn to the fray, and Superman must confront him and stop his reign over Gotham.

The final battle between these two is epic. Batman, assisted by a one armed Green Arrow goes toe to toe with Superman, now a shell of his former self and a government puppet, yet Superman still has all his powers. The climatic ending leaves both men changed forever, and shows just why Batman is the greatest super hero of them all.

Miller dealt with several themes in the book, bring back the dark brooding hulk of a Batman. A Batman, while operating within a code, it is a code with much murkier lines and really ushered in the bronze age of comics. It was one of the first comics that spoke to an adult audience, that told a story that showed that comics were a form of art, a medium that could transcend itself from four color funny pages. Many people consider this to be the greatest Batman story of all.

Finally is writer Jeph Loeb and artist Tim Sale's Batman: The Long Halloween. Published as a 13 issue mini series by DC in 1996 to 1997. Set during Batman's second year (Miller having re-established Batman's continuity during his seminal Year One during 1986 to 1987) it tells the story of a young Batman and his year long quest to find a criminal known as Holiday, a killer who commits crimes once a month, during that month's holiday. Staring on Halloween, the series ran for a year culminating with the reveal the following year's Halloween.

The story highlights both a new holiday each month, and spotlights a year one look at all of Batman's rogue's gallery. After a mass break out at Arkham Batman tracks each villain down in hopes of finding which is the Holiday killer. The Joker, Catwoman, Two-Face, The Mad Hatter, Poison Ivy, the Riddler, The Penguin, even lesser known thugs like Solomon Grundy and the Calender Man. Sale visuals are perfect for Batman (you may know his work from the TV show Heroes, for which he did all the paintings. It's dark brooding and perfect for Batman. The best part is the twist ending, which gives you clues all throughout the year long series and allows you the reader to solve the crime along with Batman.

The series shows the development of Batman and Gordon's relationship and shows Harvey Dent's spiral into the villainous Two-Face. It takes a fresh approach to Batman's rogues, and gives us an old fashioned detective story, which is ultimately what Batman was first about.

These three books each give their own take on Batman, offering three unique views of the Caped Crusader. Alan Moore gives you a psychological insight into the mind of the villain. Frank Miller gives you a take no prisoner's approach to Batman with his view of an aging Batman, who can't quit what he has become, despite not being what he once was. Loeb and Sale offer up a great detective story with super hero elements that deconstruct Batman. They even have a very solid followup mini series called Batman: Dark Victory as well as several Long Halloween One shots if you liked this take.

All of these books are available in trade paperback currently at most major book stores. Check out the re-issue of Batman: The Killing Joke by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland (or grab the DC Universe: The Stories of Alan Moore which contains both the Killing Joke and his seminal Superman story Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow, his take on the last Superman story). You can grab Batman: The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller and Batman" The Long Halloween at most any bookstore or online as well.

I'll post my take on The Dark Knight later this weekend. Keep Reading!

End of Line.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Just A Touch

Hey all,

Sorry again from the gap in posting. My focus has been hit and miss this past month. Anyway i wrote another poem, about basically having sex. A romanticised sex, but sex none the less. In truth it was kind of hard to lay it out there without being to graphic, but still conveying the thoughts I had as I was writing this. Anyway thanks for sticking with me.

Just A Touch

A soft caress on palest cheek,

Brushing lips with fingers seek.

From your mouth to cupping chin,

Promises stirred deep within.

Trailing down your silky spine,

The faintest touch in tracing line.

Your curving hips and slender waist,

Each supple part it's blessings graced.

Sweetest breath blows in my ear,

Murmured promises as you draw near.

My hands run through your flowing hair,

As my eyes are captured in blue-green stare.

Our mouths grow close to aching kiss,

Anticipation an agony of bliss.

When they touch, my heart gives way,

A kiss that last 'till end of days.

In that touch we find each other,

Exploring parts of new found lovers.

Her hand runs upon my chest,

Urgent needs in finger's request.

I pick her up and walk to bed,

All in a language left unsaid.

Careful moves and subtle brush,

Have given way to passion's flush.

Quicker then to fill our needs,

My heart is yours as reason concedes.

Whispers gone to lusty cries,

As what we have reaches it high.

Collapsed together, arm in arm,

Cocooned in love and free from harm.

I brush your cheek just one more time,

A moment so perfect in sublime.

All this came from just a touch,

I never knew I could feel this much.

End of Line.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Movie Review: Hellboy 2: The Golden Army

Hey all,

Caught Hellboy 2 this past Sunday and I think something is wrong with me. I liked it! I am use to hating so many of the movie I want to see, but there have been some surprising strong films this summer, with Wall-E, Iron Man, Wanted, and the Hulk all worthwhile.

Anyway onto Hellboy 2. As a big fan of the first Hellboy, and director Guillermo Del Toro (who made last year's fantastic Pan's Labyrinth) I had big hopes for the film and it didn't disappoint. Hellboy 2 stars Ron Perlman as the titular character, a demon raised by man to hunt monsters for the secret government organization, The Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense. With his teammate, Abe Sapien (character actor Doug Jones), an empathic merman, and girlfriend, pyrokenetic Liz Sherman(played by Selma Blair), Hellboy must stop the Prince of the elves from declaring war on humanity for what it's done to the Earth. Along with new field leader Johann Krause (who is basically a containment suit of ectoplasmic gas, they have to find the Prince and stop him from reactivating the Golden Army, an ancient mechanical goblin made army that is unbeatable. In what is such a far reaching and fantastical premise, the movie keeps it down to earth.

Del Toro does a fantastic job in casting. Ron Perlman is probaly the best actor in the world at emoting and acting in heavy prosthetics. He brings an everyman's approach to Hellboy, the supposed demon of the apocalypse. You feel his need to be accepted by an unaccepting world that fears him, and for his love of fellow "freak" Liz. Blair brings her fiery temper and a breath of normalcy among the chaos. Her and Perlman have very solid chemistry. Krause is also a welcome bit of comic relief in the smug and pompous role as field leader. Voiced by Family guy creator Seth McFarlane, he walks a fine line between jerk and hero very well.

The other great thing about this movie is the physical effects. Del Toro is a genius at creating the monsters that inhabit this world and bring them to life. Hellboy, Abe and Krause look incredibly like their comic book counterparts. The other characters that populate the world are just as intense and diverse. Particularly the Angle of Death that shows later in the film. The fact that all these characters are real and on set, not CGI makes it a unique film experience.

That's not to say that there weren't some things i didn't like. There is a bit of a sequence where Hellboy fights a monster while holding a baby that stretched the rules of believability in this film, as well a some questionable wire work in some of the fight sequences. But truthfully those are minor complaints. Hopefully Del Toro will get the chance to direct a third installment of the franchise after finishing the Lord of the Ring prequel (The Hobbit) that he is slated to direct.

I really liked this film. I have become a particular fan of both Del Toro and Ron Perlman, and I recommend this film completely. Check it out, Hellboy 2: The Golden Army.

End of Line.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Close My Eyes

Hey all,

Bit of a poem I been working on for a week. I don't know if I captured what I was going for, but I think I am done with it. Jason had asked if I could do a poem about a nightmare, so this was my effort. Maybe it was good, maybe not. I am not sure how I feel about it. I'd love some feedback. I'll try to post again on Friday with some new Flash Fiction. Thanks!

Close My Eyes

Close my eyes and fall to dreams,

Though nightmares plague in silent screams.

Toss and turn in fitful sleep,

As mind wanders from the restful deep.

All my fears played out so real,

Nighttime frights together congeal.

And when I wake from sweat soaked slumber,

No escape from all that life encumbers.

The things that plague my resting state,

Like fear and love and doubt and hate,

Still surround me all alone.

It feels as if this is all I've known.

Chased by demons of my id,

Whose true nature cannot stay hid.

My conscious deep bubbles to light,

Giving life to unearthly fright.

And again I wake to haunted thought,

At the twists and turns which mind has wrought.

I wake from each with a jumping start,

Has my mind fallen apart?

Another vision lies in wait,

Just close my eyes and welcome fate.

Nightmares ride the trails of mind,

I fear what images the dark will find.

Fleeting dreams, can't find peace.

Another night, I have no release.

Now I lay my head to bed,

And pray for once the sleep of the dead.

End of Line.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Movie Review: Hancock

Hey all,

Went to see Hancock over the holiday weekend and I have to say I was a little disappointed. Hancock stars Will Smith as John Hancock, an amnesiac who awoke in a hospital with superpowers. With powers similar to Superman, such as flight, super strength, and invulnerability, Hancock is alone in the world. Such as so he has turned to drinking and has become lonely and despondent. Still driven by a need to help people, he usually helps them in a way that causes wanton destruction and is pretty reviled by most of the city of Los Angeles.

That all changes when he saves Jason Bateman's life, an ad executive who believes in Hancock and wants to change the public perception of him. In an attempt to prove to LA how much they need him, Hancock agrees to enter rehab and go to prison for the damages he caused the city. Bateman assures Hancock that in a few weeks the city will be clambering for his return to combat the growing crime left in his absence. The big twist is how Hancock will relate when he discovers that he isn't the only one of his kind, and that he may be losing his powers.

There is a lot I should like about Hancock, and while it's not a bad movie, it leaves so much on the table. In basic terms, this is about a drunk asshole version of Superman, and I never felt like they capitalized on that. What happens when the Man of Tomorrow just doesn't care? Introducing a counter point to his powers to seemed kind of fruitless in the end as well. I don't want to drop any spoilers, but the confrontation at the end isn't so much a fight as it is a choice. I really would have rather seen them explore the ideas of a drunken hero with unlimited powers, and what consequences that has. Or what a person with the abilities that Hancock has does in a prison that can only contain him if he lets it?

The love interest in Charlize Theron angle should have been played up more. The triangle that forms between Theron, Bateman, and Will Smith's character doesn't get fleshed out enough. I would have really liked to see some drama in that department.

To be fair, Hancock is a summer popcorn flick, the kind Will Smith is his best at. It's fun and funny and you can spend a lot worse ways at the theatre. I would still recommend Iron Man or the Incredible Hulk for your super hero fix before this, but it's not a bad movie. It's like I said, I wish they just would have plunged a little deeper.

End of Line.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Concert Time: Rancid!

Hey all,

Wednesday night one of my all time favorite bands came in concert, Rancid. Almost 10 years ago I saw Rancid perform at the Van's Warped Tour, and it was weird to kind of come full circle. Rancid, for me, has one of the best and deepest set lists in punk rock. Having been together in various forms for about 20 years, they have some great content to pull from, and they did not disappoint.

First a little back story. I got tickets for the show some time back with the intent of catching the show with my pal Bill. Unfortunately he couldn't attend after I got the tickets so I was gonna go with by brother, who also couldn't go. I pretty much ran through my friends list and struck out. Even Edwin, my co-worker, who was going to go canceled at the last minute, so I ended up catching the show alone. Kind of sad I know. I at least managed to turn a profit on the extra ticket. The show was sold out and I scalped it for a slight bit extra. It paid for the gas to the show at any rate.

My thinking was that I already paid for the tickets, there is no reason why I can't go by myself and have some fun seeing one of my favorite bands. So I did and I had a lot of fun.

I missed most of the opening act, The Riverboat Gamblers, to start with. I ended up working late and left straight from the store (luckily I had an extra change of clothes for just such an occasion!) The part of their show I did see however, was pretty good. I may do an I Tunes search later to see if I can find any good stuff out there.

Rancid fucking owned though! Starting off the show with Fall Back Down, they cut through almost their entire And Out Come the Wolves album. With especially scorching versions of What I Think About You, Ruby SoHo, Journey to the End of the East Bay, and Olympia, WA. They also hit some great tracks off of Let's Go, including one of my favorites, Sidekick. Doubly impressive was them playing tracks from their Operation Ivy days, a treat I wasn't really aware that they did at shows any more.

I had two slight complaints on the overall show. One, is they didn't play Dope Sick Girl or my favorite song, Red Hot Moon. But those are minor, playing so much else I shouldn't complain. The second was the encore. They came back out and only played one song. Mind you, it was a scorching version of probably their biggest hit, Time Bomb, but I was kind of hoping for a few more tracks. Maybe it was just because I was so into it.

All in all I had a blast and would love for them to come back in concert after the release of their next album in September. Oh! I almost forgot to mention me accidental punching a girl in the face.

Yeah, I felt kind of bad about that. The show was playing at The Marquee, not a huge venue but good sized and it was packed to the gills with people. As they started playing Knowledge I was pumping my fist in their air to the beat. Unfortunately, I was pumping it a bit more out than up, and accidentally hit a girl in the face. Of Course I immediately apologized, but honestly she was like don't worry it's cool. Then she walked towards the bar. Thank God for impaired judgement! I quietly moved to another section of the floor, and finished the show.

I had a ton of fun and I can't wait until my next show!

Thanks for reading!

End of Line.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Movie Review: Wall-E

Happy July all!

I caught another movie this past weekend, Disney/Pixar's incredible Wall-E. Wall-E was simply put, incredible. As I write this now I think that it is the best animated movie that I have ever seen.

First off, is the animation. What Finding Nemo did for CG colors, this movie does in spacial effects. The sheer depth and technical skill in the animation is unsurpassed. The color spectrum, textures, and depth and perspective is deeper and more advanced than I have ever seen. The main characters, a small dilapidated robot (Wall-E)and the more advanced scouting robot (EVE) portray more pathos and emotions in a simple look or gestures than many human actors are even capable of.

The story is that of Wall-E(Waste Allocation Load-Lifter, Earth Class), the last robot left on an abandoned Earth, charged with the task of cleaning up the waste and refuse left behind after man's exodus from an Earth to polluted to keep populated. All the other robots have broken down over the 700 years he has been on the planet, and Wall-E is lonely. He has taken to collecting items of interest to learn about humanity, especially from an old VHS copy of Hello, Dolly! that teaches him of love and companionship. Wall-E is thrown for a loop when EVE (Earth Vegetation Extractor()arrives on Earth, in search of viable life signs. Wall-E falls in love with EVE, and is devastated when she is recalled to space after finding a small plant. Wall-E stows away on the shuttle that returns, and embarks on an adventure that will affect the entire human race.

Wall-E has been accused of being a bit preachy in its message. That we need to concentrate on the environment before this kind of damage becomes irreparable, as well as the ill effects of mankind's increased obesity levels and reliance on technology. I think that's to harsh a criticism. I felt Wall-E did send a message, but in such a way as to not distract from the story. In the film humanity has turned into a society totally reliant on robots, traveling on hover chairs, having no responsibility. All in all a society of sloth. Wall-E is the spark that ignites the change on their culture.

My favorite part of the film was the character development. With two main characters with almost no vocabulary, the ability to tell a compelling story through expression and body language is amazing. Wall-E tells his story on his face and in his actions, creating such a fully realized character, who utters maybe 3 different words the entire film. Yet everything is so effortless. EVE's transformation from aloof robot to a true friend and companion of Wall-E completed along the same limitations, yet you truly feel bad for these characters during their struggles. Hell, the final sequence alone is a truly heart wrenching moment.

Wall-E gets my highest recommendations. Please go check out what I feel is not only the best Pixar film to date (yes better than Toy Story and Finding Nemo!) but perhaps the best animated feature of all time. It's that good.

End of Line.