Thursday, May 24, 2012

The End To 'The Cola Dog'

'The Cola Dog' blog has come to an end. It's not that I haven't enjoyed working on the blog, but it just hasn't been getting the views to warrant getting the weekly attention it has been getting from me. And really maintaining 3 weekly blogs while holding a full time job (and having worked over 300 overtime hours so far in 2012) is just a bit much, so I decided to let go of 'The Cola Dog'. But you need not worry I still intend to write blogs about comic books and animation from time to time, and those blogs can be found on my 'Random Nerdness' blog. So if this is your first time checking out 'The Cola Dog' blog be sure to check out my otherblogs:
(A blog about anything and everything, especially stuff in the Sci-fi/fantasy/comic books/television/movie/beer/books realm)

(A blog devoted to the world of Star Trek) 

I have something else I intend to branch into, another form of multi-media, but I cannot say anything at this time. Look for an announcement this summer or fall (hopefully). Anywho if you are a reader of 'The Cola Dog' or have checked it out in the past allow me to say "Thank you". It has been a fun experience. See you on the other blogs!

Blog #19: Potential Comic Book Movies!

- 'Shazam' (Captain Marvel) from the DCU would make a cool movie I think if done right, with 'Mad Men' star Jon Hamm in the title role. 

- 'Moon Knight' with 'True Blood' star Stephen Moyer (Bill Compton) in the title role. 

- 'Irredeemable' with another 'True Blood' star in the title role. Alexander Skarsgard would make an awesome Plutonian. And although he is older than the character I would have Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) as Quibit. 

- 'Incorruptable' with Tom Hardy or Ben Affleck playing Max Damage. Scarlett Johansson as 'Headcase', Steve Buscemi as 'Police Lieutenant Louis Armadale' (this guy is one of my favourite actors!!) and Emily Meade as 'Jailbait'. Emily Meade may not sound familiar but she played the future 'Ella Dunham' on the 3rd season finale of 'Fringe'. 

- And finally I would love to see Mark Waid & Alex Ross's masterpiece 'Kingdom Come' done as a movie.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Blog #18: He-Man & Me

Anyone who knew me back in the 80's knew I was the biggest fan of He-Man there was. A few years back the entire cartoon series of He-Man and She-Ra from the 80's was released on DVD and of course I bought it. My kids loved watching them and I loved re-watching them. In my part of Canada we got He-Man on TV a few years after it's release in the US. In 1984-85-86 I got up every Saturday morning for 7 am and tuned into He-Man on channel 12 CFRN , and watched his adventures battling the evil Skeletor and his minions. Not only did I watch the show but I had almost all the action figures and toy sets. My Mom and Dad spoiled me as a kid and almost every time going to town I picked up the latest action figure. I remember shopping at the Medicine Bottle in Barrhead and Mom buying "Castle Greyskull" for me. My Aunt Margaret also bought me He-Man toys and usually had a new one for me almost every time I would visit her and Granny. I pretty much had most of the toy line at one time. The snake hand puppet you guys made reference to in the podcast actually was part of the Hordak swamp set, even though Hordak was never in a swamp on She-Ra. It really is weird they didn't continue the He-Man cartoon and ended it when they did. From what I remember it ended at the height of it's popularity. 

In 1987 a live action show called "Masters of the Universe Power Tour" came to Edmonton to Northlands Coliseum. It was a stage production that featured actors playing He-Man and She-Ra and a bunch of other characters. My Mom and Dad took me, my sister Brianna and cousin Lenny to the show. I was so excited. Lenny and I got our own He-Man swords, which were plastic of course. We even got sworn in as honorary members of the "Masters of the Universe" which was very exciting for us. Brianna cried when the show was over because she didn't want She-Ra to leave. I remember we got to go through a McDonalds drive-thru for the first time and I ate my one and only fillet-of-fish burger. 

In 1987 the real life action "He-Man" movie hit theatres featuring Dolph Lundgren. They made a lot of changes to the He-man story for the movie but the movie was cool for the time. It also featured a young Courtney Cox, "Monica" from the TV show "Friends", in her feature film debut. It has not stood the test of time and is very dated if you watch it now but back in 1987 it was awesome. 

I never liked the 'New Adventures', but I loved the 2002 series and the new toys being released are awesome. I'm actually re-collecting all the lost He-Man toys of my youth and collecting the new stuff. Most of my original collection was either sold by me in my teens at a Garage sale, or was destroyed by my Cousin Tyler and his BB-Gun. My favourite toys were Hordak, Man-E-Faces, Stratos. There was also a Horde solider who had a tire on his stomach, which allowed him to travel like a motorbike-robot. Can't remember what he was called but he was awesome.

More He-Man discussion to come in the not too distant future...

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Blog #17: Captain Power

Although technically not a comic book or animated series I did watch this show as a kid Saturday mornings and they did have some of the first CGI characters on television. Back in 1987, I was 7 and I remember watching a new series called 'Captain Power And The Soldiers Of The Future'. It was a series set in the future following an apocalyptic war between man and machines and the machines won. Now humans are hunted down and 'digitized' into a the computer ruler of the future: Overmind. Captain Power leads an elite human strike force fighting 'Lord Dredd' and the Bio-Dred Empire in the hopes of defeating the machines and taking back the Earth for mankind.

This show only lasted 1 season and I loved every minute of it. By to days standards this show does not hold up, even with it's 'cutting edge' 80's special effects it is very dated. Still I am excited to have bought this series on DVD back in December. It was a series filmed in Canada with several Canadian actors taking lead roles. Also J.Micheal Stracynski (creator of 'Babylon 5' and writer of the recent 'Thor' movie) was a main writer for this series. The special effects of the 'Bio-Dreads' were some of the first computer-generated-beside-live-actors I think ever done for television. They looked cool in 1987 because that had never been done like that, but now they look very bad. I actually caught most of the series on the 'Space Channel' up her in Canada back in 1999, and 13 years ago I thought it looked dated. Plus the target audience was toy buying kids so JMS & crew were limited on what they could do. Although the 'suicide bombing' death of a beloved character on the season 1 (and ultimately series) finale was both shocking and made me shed a tear. I bought this series for nostalgia purposes as this was one of my favourite series of my childhood. Also in some ways Captain Power could be seen as the grandparent of the much worse 'Power Rangers' franchise. Also some great Canadian actors were featured on the series, as it was filmed in Canada, such as Graham Greene and Peter MacNeill .
The Captain Power 'Extras' DVD Disc: Very awesome hour and a half documentary about the making of the series, with interviews with some of the cast and creators of the series. They gave some info on what they had planned for season 2 and it would have been cool to see. If you watched this series as a kid it is well worth picking up this DVD set.
See you in the future! POWER ON!

Sunday, May 06, 2012

This & That: Avengers (Spoiler Free Review)

Saturday I watched 'The Avengers' for the first time. This has been a movie I have been looking forward to for a long time. The trailers and TV commercials have been doing a great job hyping up this film. I even pre-bought my tickets so I was sure to get into the film, and it was probably a good ideas I did because the theatre was filling up fast. This is a spoiler free review, but I may reference moments seen in trailers or commercials. That being said here is my review:

This may just be the best super hero movie ever made. No I change that answer, THIS IS THE BEST SUPER HERO MOVIE EVER MADE (thus far). Marvel Studios has done a brilliant job building up to this movie, starting all the way back in 2008 with the first 'Iron Man' movie. Now here we are 4 years later and everything has come together beautifully. Also Marvel did the awesome move of hiring Geek Icon Joss Whedon not only to direct  the film but to write it too. And judging by the awesome dialogue and references Whedon is definitely a comic book fan who applies his knowledge and passion to the art form to this film. The interaction between the characters is awesome and what a fan of the comic book would expect. The moment (seen in some trailers) where Hulk catches a falling Iron Man was so amazing I almost cheered out loud, but I didn't. 

When I had heard Mark Ruffalo had been cast as 'Bruce Banner' I wasn't too impressed by that casting call. Not that I hate Ruffalo or anything but I just didn't see him working in that role. I was never a fan of Eric Bana (Hulk, 2003) or Edward Norton (Incredible Hulk, 2008) in the role of Banner either. In my mind the only actor who ever captured the essence of Banner was Bill Bixby from the 70's Hulk TV series. But after seeing Ruffalo in the role I was wrong not to be impressed, in fact Ruffalo had a 'Bixby' quality he brought to the role. Ruffalo was excellent in the role and was my favourite addition to the Marvel Avengers film universe. I saw Ruffalo interviewed up her in Canada on 'Innerspace' and it was nice to see he was very excited and proud to be in the role and apparently he is contracted to do 6 more Marvel films playing Banner. Very cool. Also the CGI 'Hulk' was far better looking and realistic in this film than the previous 2 Hulk films, the Hulk was awesome to watch. 

In the sequel that is sure to come I have a couple suggestions for the Marvel Executives who may be reading this review. Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) in the role of 'Hank Pym' as either Giant Man or Ant Man or Yellow Jacket, as Hank Pym has 3 super hero alter egos. Cranston is one of the best actors alive right now, as he has proven time and time again with all his Emmy wins, and he would do excellent in the role of a super hero who suffers from multiple personalities. 

And Yvonne Strahovski (Chuck) in the role of Ms Marvel. It is a role she was obviously born to play. 

Be sure to check out this film if you are a Avengers and/or comic book fan. 

***** 5 Stars out of 5

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Blog #16: Side Kicks, Death and Captain Marvel

- My favourite super-hero sidekick is Rick Jones, as I had previously mentioned all the way back in The Cola Dog Blog #1.  Now in current Marvel he can turn into a Hulk-like creature called A-bomb but back in the day he was just a normal dude who hung out with super heroes. For a while he trained with Captain America and was his side kick, but most of his side kicking career was with the Hulk. I liked him because he was funny, hip and just a normal human with no powers just martial arts training. He was also indirectly responsible for Bruce Banner turning into the Hulk.

- Captain America's sidekick Bucky should have stayed dead. His death meant something and they ruined it by bringing him back and creating all this unneeded back story that is currently seen in Marvel. And speaking of side kicks who die Batman's side kick Jasen Todd should have stayed dead too. And on the subject of death when Aunt May died in the Spider-Man books it was a touching sequence, then again they ruined it by bringing her back.

- Although not a sidekick 'Captain Marvel' did have a few side kicks too. He is one character I've always liked but has never got the proper treatment.  Captain Marvel deserves his own title because I did like the series 'Power of Shazam' in the 90's, but since then the character just hasn't been used as he should have been. But recently Geoff Johns brought him back in the New 52 as a back up story in Justice League. I think the reason why he doesn't seem to fit in is because he wasn't actually part of the DC Universe for years and was acquired years later. Marvel was actually in competition with Superman back in the 40's and 50's. I don't mind having them in the same universe, it is neat to see Marvel and Superman fight. Superman has more powers to call upon but he is vulnerable to magic, which gives Marvel his powers. They had an awesome battle in 'Kingdom Come'. Looking forward to that and further adventures from CM!
See you next week!

Monday, April 30, 2012

This & That: He-Man Toy Collection Update

This last weekend I attended the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo and I managed to acquire some more toys for my He-Man toy collection.

And this is my entire collection to date:

Thanks to social media outlets Facebook and Twitter I was able to document my recent trip to the Calgary Comic And Entertainment Expo 2012. It was quite the quest filled with misadventure, good times and a few bad. Among my many activities that weekend it included the fact I got drunk with 'The Honky Tonk Man', I got to meet Stan Lee and most of the cast of 'Star Trek: The Next Generation', and I had a talk with comic book writing icon Peter David. 

Check out my 'Captains Log' blog posts about my Calgary experience over at the Random Nerdness Blog.

See you soon!