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Found 82 results

  1. Dear Princess Celestia, Carbs are the enemy. That is all. Your faithful student, Twilight Sparkle. P.S. Please send another dragon errand-boy. This one is broken. Five down, one to go...
  2. Out of all the slasher movie franchises, this one is probably my favorite, for a multitude of reasons, namely because Freddy is awesome. - Director Wes Craven based the story off a variety of things that disturbed him. The central premise of the movie is based off an account he read of teenagers who were afraid to go to sleep and died of mysterious causes a few minutes after they dozed off. The image of a fedora-sporting lunatic was taken from a childhood experience in which a homeless man peered into Craven's bedroom window and seeming took amusement out of scaring him. The name "Krueger" came from a bully who terrorized him in school. - The texture of Freddy's skin was taken from a cheese pizza. The makeup team actually had a folder of burn victim photos for reference, but they didn't really like looking through it. The final makeup took 3 hours to apply. - Johnny Depp's debut role as the hilariously-doomed Glen happened by pure chance. He was simply accompanying a friend on his audition for the role, but the filmmakers decided to give him the part instead. The weird part is that the friend who didn't get the job, Jackie Earl Haley, played Freddy in the 2010 remake (aka, the only good thing in that entire turd of a movie). - Krueger's ability to change forms, and the detail that anything he changed into would share the same colors as his sweater, was lifted right from Plastic Man. In fact, the sweater was meant to be red yellow before Wes Craven read that red green are the two most contrasting colors to the human retina. - The setting is never referred to as Elm Street once in the first film. Its use in the title was simply meant to give the impression that this was all happening on a quiet, normal street. Just. Like. Yours. Of course, the sequels went crazy with Elm Street and made up all those stupid rules about how Krueger can't do anything outside of Springwood or something. - Robert Englund based Krueger's mannerisms on Klaus Kinski's performance in the 1979 remake of Nosferatu. As for the voice, I'll let him explain that: - The knifes on the glove are real. According to Englund, anybody who has ever tried it on has probably cut themselves by accident, like he did the first time he wore it. The sound they make when scrapped on the boiler room pipes were made with steak knifes on a steel chair. - The station Glen listens to right before he bites it is KRGR. - Krueger's stretchy-arms were simply puppet arms attached to strings controlled by crew members sitting over the alleyway. - The blood geyser was accomplished via a room built to revolve 360 degrees, with the torrent of blood poured through a hole on the top while the footage was shot upside down. Most of the 500 gallons of blood used in the film was used during this scene. The room was used again for Tina's death, when she is dragged up the wall and slashed up on the ceiling. The little moment where Tina reaches for Rod, who's in the foreground of the shot, was not composited (or two shots put together); actor Jsu Garcia was upside down, with his hair patted down, while the footage was shot to look right way up. - Heather Langenkamp found herself stalked by some dude in real life thanks to her role in the movie. - Apparently, this was the first movie to use a breakaway mirror. - The face in the wall effect was simply a latex stretched over a hole in the wall that a crew member stuck their face against. It looks awesome. The remake did it with CGI and it looks like cartoonish ass. - The ending was meant to be a happy triumph, with Nancy's friends revealed to still be alive, implying the whole movie was just a bad dream. Of course, the producers wanted an ending that left the door open for more sequels. - Filmed in 30 days on a budget of 1.8 million. Ultimately, it proved to be a huge success for the film's fledgling production company, New Line Cinema, that helped get it off the ground. Thus, New Line is often referred to as "the house that Freddy built". So no Freddy, no Jackson Lord of the Rings. Go figure. - Robert Englund almost didn't play Krueger in the sequels before producer Robert Shaye realized how horrible a mistake it was to hire an extra for less money in Freddy's Revenge. Englund was brought back a few weeks after that movie started production. - Robert Englund plays all the characters and disguises Kruger poses as, unless it's important it be otherwise. - Freddy's Revenge was written by the screenwriter to subtly be the gayest horror movie ever. The director was completely unaware of this. - Several characters in Dream Warriors wear Dokken shirts. Dokken wrote music for the film. - The Freddy snake was originally a pinkish hue, but green goop was added at the last minute to make it look less...phallic. Because if it's one thing the makers of these films don't want you to feel, its uncomfortable. - The Dream Master is the highest grossing movie of the franchise (not counting Freddy vs. Jason), as well as the highest grossing slasher movie of the 1980's. - Conversely, The Dream Child is the lowest grossing of the franchise. That movie had to be edited down because the original cut was thought to be too disturbing and was Rated X. - Alice is the only protagonist in the franchise to have fought Krueger twice and survive. - Peter Jackson, back when he was till making horror movies, wrote a treatment for a possible sequel in the franchise titled The Dream Lover. In sort of a meta joke at the expense of the series, the beginning of the film showed that the children and teenagers of Springwood were no longer afraid of Freddy because of how ridiculous he had become and had actually made a game out of purposely falling asleep, trolling him, and taking a piece of his sweater to prove they did it. - Wes Craven has said he cannot follow the story in the sequels at all. Neither can I, man. - This song is great. OK, time to end this nightmare. Kung fu this, bitch! Man, Freddy calls everyone a bitch way too much. Somebody needs to count how many times he says it.
  3. That's right, today I'm taking on a whole franchise. I've got nothing better do with my life, except literally anything else. - The most profitable slasher series of all time. The original alone made $40 million on its budget of $500,000. - Onscreen body count: 199. The movie with the most murders is Jason X at 23, a number that's even higher if you count the 20,000 people on board that exploding space station. - The sound isn't "chi-chi-chi cha-cha-cha". It's "ki-ki-ki ma-ma-ma", as in "Kill her, Mommy". - It's no secret most of the actors who have worked on this series don't view it in the best light. Some called their respective movies "c-list", and Betsy Palmer (Pamela Voorhees) hated the original. - Over 10 actors have played Jason over the years. Kane Hodder (who also played Lord Zedd on Power Rangers) was the stuntman who played him the most, in a total of four separate films. - Tom Savini, makeup artist on the first film, based Jason's disfigured visage on a mentally challenged man he knew from his childhood. - It was Savini who thought up the Carrie-style jump scare at the end of the movie. He would check out the last five minutes of screenings just to see people's reactions, which probably made the three months needed to reshoot and reshoot it. - The original was filmed at Camp No-Be-Bo-Sco in Blairstown, New Jersey, which still functions as a boy scout camp. - The original magazine ad for the movie was released before they had even written a script. They just wanted to see if any other movie already had that title. - The original mask was sculpted out of a Detroit Red Wings goalie mask. - Crispin Glover's awkward dancing scene in Part IV was originally set to "Back in Black", but they couldn't secure the rights. - Speaking of which, Part IV has the most nudity out of any movie in the franchise... ...or so I've been told. - Part VII was meant to crossover the series with Nightmare on Elm Street, but they couldn't get the rights to Freddy, so his role in the script was replaced with a teenage girl with psychic powers. We would have to wait to 2003 for that fight to happen. - Jason Goes to Hell features a cameo from The Evil Dead's Necrinomicon, along with the demonic dagger thing from the first two movies, implying some sort of connection with that franchise. In fact, the sequel to Freddy vs. Jason was suppose to include Ash in a three-way battle to the death, but Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell decided not to take part when they were informed that Ash would not be allowed to definitively kill the other two. - That corporate guy who gets killed in the opening to Jason X is David Cronenberg, director of The Fly, The Brood, and Videodrome, which should probably be your indication that you shouldn't be taking anything in that movie seriously... ...if this scene or the robot nipples didn't make that clear already. - In a majority of the films, there is a storm either approaching Camp Crystal Lake or there's already one going on. The obvious idea we're suppose to be taking from this is that Jason is totally a force of God killing all those horny teenage delinquents. - The 2009 remake apparently featured too much sex for producer Michael Bay, who walked out on the premiere. - Not really trivia so much as an obvious fact, but Jason wasn't the killer in the original. It was his mum. Do your homework, kids; your life may depend on it. - Jason hates all the bands you like. What a fun, if not totally stupid franchise. Let's end this with Jason punching a dude's head off.
  4. You know what the problem with Superman is? It's not that he's OP, or a boy scout, or that he isn't as nuanced and "deep" as other superheroes are. That's actually why I love him. In an irony that has become much more obvious as time goes on, the character who is seen as the poster-boy for generic, bland superheroes that popular culture has been trying to get away from is now refreshing in comparison to everyone else. In a world where every superhero has to be complex or "edgy" or whatever the kids are saying nowadays, the idea of a nice guy using what he has to help people is, and has always been, appealing. Not to say that Clark Kent is easy to write or to "get" as a character. Far from it. But I think people misunderstand why that is. Most would say it's because he's too powerful to be relatable, and that we have to restrict him or add more to make him more relatable. Superman's problem is that we keep coming at him with this mindset, and that's a terrible mindset to have when writing Superman. Instead, the perfect example of this type of character done right is Captain America: The First Avenger. What makes Steve Rogers such a great hero, much like Clark Kent, is that he's relateable because he's likeable. They're the kind of people we want to be like, and we care about them not because we can see them happening in our world (realism is not an indicator of relatability), but simply because we want them to succeed. Superman was never about a hero trying to achieve his full potential; it was about a guy who already did and serves as a role model to mankind, both as a hero and as a good person. While I get the argument that Superman being as powerful as he is may get boring, keep in mind that it isn't as big a problem as many think it is. People only think that because of the movies, where there's just Lex Luthor and he's just catching some boats or something; there's always worthy challengers in his stories. Plus, watching a guy that powerful do his thing is always really fun to watch. I bring all this up because while I think director Zack Snyder get's that, particularly the whole "this guy can do anything, so let's make this bigger than any other superhero movie can manage" thing, I don't think Christopher Nolan or writer David S. Goyer got it. At all. They briefly touch on the whole "beacon for humanity" thing, and it's kind of interesting seeing how a 21st century Earth would respond to a Kryptonian, but the whole thing is just bogged down with questions about Superman's role as a protector and explanations of the story's mechanisms. Maybe I've been spoiled by The Avengers and Iron Man 3, and odds are most normal people are gonna dig what is the most badass Superman movie yet, but if any character was an excuse to just cut loose and make an awesome, fun superhero movie, it would be Superman. By no means do I mean it should be cheerful 100% of the way through (his origin story involves the death of nearly his entire race), but after forty minutes of a muted, desaturated world where Clark Kent (Henry Cavill) is wondering whether he should actually use his powers to help people at the risk of incurring the fear and mistrust of a species not ready for it, you wish they'd just get on with it and have fun. But the most "totally-not-getting-it" feature of the movie is that it's constantly reminding us that Clark is an alien outsider. The youngest we see the character is when he's struggling with the fact that he can see through people's skin while his classmates comment on how weird and insular he is, and pretty much every Clark scene after that is him struggling not to contain his alien-ness. Fact is that he's Clark Kent and a human first, a Kryptonian second. Instead, we get a movie that probably uses the name "Kal-El" more than "Clark". On a related note, they only say "Superman" two or three times in this two and a half hour movie. You know, because Gawd forbid a superhero movie not be ashamed of the sillier or cornier elements that made it a superhero tale in the first place. Again, probably spoiled by Marvel's Cinematic Universe. Clark Kent's origin story hasn't really been changed all that much, except for some added details to set up the plot for the movie. Krypton still blows up, but it now happens due in part to a complete draining of its resources by its inhabitants and a short but violent civil war instigated by the Kryptonian military class, led by the ruthless General Zod (Michael Shannon). His intention is to save Krypton through the genetic cleansing of his people, essentially leaving only the bloodlines he deems worthy of survival. Zod's former colleague, Jor-El (Russel Crowe), instead wants the opposite: an abandonment of the laws that selectively breeds Kyrptonians and places them into per-selected roles, instead promoting free will and chance. As such, Jor-El's son, Kal-El, is the first natural Kryptonian birth in centuries. Zod won't have any of that shit, but he's unable to stop Jor-El from launching his son (who holds the key to Krypton's future due to somewhat vague and complicated reasons) into space, while Zod and his gang of ruffians are imprisoned in the Phantom Zone hours before Krypton is destroyed. So Kal-El lands in rural Kansas, is discovered and raised by Jonathan and Martha Kent (Kevin Costner and Diane Lane), named Clark, all that good stuff. Eventually Clark decides he needs to travel the world to figure out who he is and how to interact with humanity. Eventually he discovers his Kryptonian origins via an alien craft buried in the Arctic, along with the iconic suit and a new sense of purpose. Wait, no, he's still trying to determine how he should interact with humanity. The timing of his discovery comes only a few days before General Zod and his crew, having escaped the Phantom Zone, show up on Earth to capture Kal-El and use the planet as a stepping stone for rebuilding the Kryptonian Empire in their image. Superman won't have any of that shit, and the rest of the movie becomes a battle to save the Earth, with the help of reporter Lois Lane (Amy Adams) and the occasional words of wisdom from his Ghost Dad. The cast is putting forth a lot of effort, even if the characters they play never give them a chance to really stretch their legs (with one notable exception). Cavill seems to have a handle on Superman, but he only ever gets to play either confused Kal-El struggling to find a purpose or Superman being pissed off. We only get a taste of the classic Superman we all know and (hopefully) love, and we never get to see him just be Clark Kent. Adams is trying her darnest as Lois Lane, but the writers never give her anything to do except snoop around a bit in the second act. But worst off all, she doesn't seem to have any chemistry with Cavill, and seeing as how important that relationship is to the character (and popular culture as a whole), that's tragic. Crowe is pretty solid as Jor-El. Maybe a bit too similar to Marlon Brando's version of the character, but he has a presence and the right combination of emotion and Spock-esque coolness. Costner and Lane are great as the Kents, bringing a lot of warmth to a movie that really needs it, though I wish Jon Kent would dial back the "you're gonna change the world, son" speeches. Then there's Perry White (Laurence Fishburne) and the rest of the staff of the Daily Planet, where Lois--actually they don't really factor into this at all. In fact it feels they were here just because it's a Superman movie. Moving on. Surprisingly, some of the best moments in the movie come from Colonel Nathan Hardy (Christopher Meloni), the military man who interacts with Superman the most. His character, again, doesn't have too much to do, but when Meloni needs to deliver an important line, he gawddamn delivers an important line. But by far the best performance and character is Shannon as Zod. Shannon is one the best character actors out there ( ), particularly excelling villain roles. Zod is no different, with Shannon effortlessly balancing intensity and a commanding presence with pure rage. It certainly helps that the writing really picks up with Zod; he's cruel and vengeful, but believes with every fiber of his being that what he's doing is the right thing. There's this fantastic scene near the end where Zod is pushed past his breaking point and goes into full on evil mode, delivering a speech that comic book awesomeness is made off. It's cheesy (one line in particular is corny as all hell), but it's sort of poetic and the kind of over the top superhero dialogue I've been wanting this whole movie, so whatever. In the end he's the only character who really ends up being compelling by himself, unfortunately. For me, at least. So at this point it probably feels like I found the movie disappointing and mediocre. Yes, it was disappointing in many respects, but despite all the things I felt they did wrong, I highly recommend it, even going as far to say that if you plan on watching it, see it in theaters, because the battle sequences are awe-inspiring. It's the best descriptor I could think of. It's kind of like how people say that you should see Transformers just for the action, but unlike in those movies, these action scenes aren't shitty. Far from it. Not only are they just around well directed and put together, but they're on a scale and visual level that's second to none. Punches and kicks land with enough force to level a city block. The battles are fought at supersonic speeds, but last several minutes instead of ending quickly, creating a constant assault on your senses. A lot of thought was obviously put into visualizing what characters of such immense powers trying to beat each to death would look like, and it's probably as close as we're going to get for a while. You can see where all the budget went in this movie, and it's here that you see Snyder really excel at his talent as a director. If I was more invested in what was going on, I'd name the fight scenes (the climatic one in particular) the best superhero action scenes ever (The Avengers and Spider-Man 2's brawls still take the cake). If I have one gripe with the content of the action scenes is that I wish there was more scenes of Superman doing his thing: breaking off from a fight to save people caught in the crossfire, or redirecting the battle away from the population. That's the kind of stuff I love about the character. Instead, he doesn't really seem to notice the citizens who are stuck in the middle of it all, and aside from one or two moments, he doesn't really make an effort to actively help people or contain the violence. In fact, the reason one of the fistfights breaks out in Smallville is because Superman actually seem to draw them there, and by "drew them there", I mean he flat out threw Zod through a gas station full of people. But that's a nitpick (I think), and in the end, it's satisfying to finally get a Superman movie with such a display of raw power, and it ain't just restricted to the fight scenes, or even scenes with Kyrptonians. Whether it be something as simple as a school bus falling off a bridge or a (rather random) tornado flipping cars and debris all over the place. When the movie isn't contemplating humanity or something, it's as big as a movie can get. Also, it looks cool. Snyder is one of the best visual directors out there, and Man of Steel is no different. The muted tones (which actually work well here), the depiction of Superman moving at Mach 11 speeds, the H.R. Giger-esque design of Krypton, it all just looks great. I absolutely love the music too. It's not John Williams, but it works as a new theme for a new generation. It's big and triumphant, and it fits the character well. It may not really grasp why Superman is so great, but Man of Steel is worth it just for the visuals and the spectacle. And while I am always against a movie trying to get away with skimping on a satisfying experience with a promise that everything will be better/be explained/the promises made for this movie will be kept next time, there's enough enjoyment here that I can overlook that the movie implies the Superman movie I wished this was will happen next time. Do I think it works as a movie that best represents 75 years of stories and why the character has endured as long as he has? No. But I had a good time once the bing-bangy scenes started dropping, and if this movie succeeds and inspires Warner Bros. to get off their collective asses so they can do the DC Universe (at least the parts that are not Batman) cinematic justice, than I can dig it. 7/10 P.S. I like Christopher Nolan and love his first two Batman movies, just to be clear. I just don't think his approach the Dark Knight Trilogy took was appropriate for Superman at all. The only reason he's attached to the project at all is because Warner Bros. wants him to be the godfather of the DC Cinematic Universe, when he'd rather not. P.P.S. The costume looks alright overall. I rather the colors were a bit more vibrant and the texture is distracting, but the CGI cape looks good and I love the emblem. P.P.P.S. Why is Jimmy Olsen a lady now? I don't mind, but I also don't really see the point. Ah well. P.P.P.P.S. The little fist fight between Jor-El and Zod was pretty cool. I wish Snyder had directed the Bane fights in Dark Knight Rises. P.P.P.P.P.S. At least this Superman movie can safetly claim it has more implied dead fetuses than any other movie in the franchise.
  5. Please ignore the Dreamworks Face. GO. NOW. GET IN YOUR AUTOMOBILE, GO TO THE MULTIPLEX, ACQUIRE AN ENTRY VOUCHER, SIT YOUR BUTT DOWN, AND ENJOY THE BEST DAMN MOVIE DISNEY HAS MADE IN LIKE FOREVER. Bolt was pretty decent, Princess and the Frog was flawed but also pretty good, Tangled was really good, Wreck-it-Ralph was great, and this... It's... It's... Yes. Magic. For anybody who's been hoping that Disney would truly go back to the glory days of the Renaissance, this is the closest its come in over a decade. Maybe I'm over-blowing how great it is, but if anything, that's an indication of how excited this movie made me, and it's only getting better the more I think about it. I know, I know, absolutely nothing in the commercials or trailers has indicated anything really great. "What," you snarl, "that stupid-looking movie with the obnoxious snowman guy? Why would I want to watch that, Citrus? You have failed me yet again!" But I assure you, your majesty, it really is much more than some pandering kiddie-flick. It's actually quite smart. Like, genius. Subversive, even. Like, it's gonna hit you like a hurricane five different ways past Sunday. Whatever that means. If it sounds like I'm being ambiguous, it's because I totally am and you have fallen right into my trap. I really don't want to give away everything that makes this movie genius, so both because it's best you go in blind and because I am lazy, imma just gush for a minute or two. 7 FREAKING REASONS FROZEN IS FREAKING GREAT. 1. The voice cast is marvelous and lively, especially Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel as the lead sisters. Menzel's experience as the misunderstood Elphaba in Wicked comes in handy as lonely-princess-with-supernatural-powers-turned-badass-snow-queen Elsa. 2. Like I said, subversive as hell. The "love at first sight" and subsequent one-day courtship that usually appears in Disney movies is condemned and mocked by several characters (and it's actually what sets off the main conflict in the movie), the main relationship is between siblings and not a couple, the Disney trope that deems all queens be evil is played with, the absence of the parents that we always see in these films actually takes a toll the main characters, and the comic relief character is almost a tragic figure. 3. That said, it still balances that line between taking a critical eye to the tropes of the past and still displaying a genuine love for the Disney canon and all the fluff that comes with it, something most recent fairy tale (if you can call them that) movies have a hard time doing for some reason. 4. It's expertly scripted and paced, juggling several themes, introducing characters and ideas, and moving the plot along all at once, and it doesn't even break a sweat. Me thinks some of Pixar's sorcery has rubbed off on Disney. 5. The musical numbers are absolutely phenomenal. The central ballad, "Let it Go", can stand toe-to-toe with anything from the Renaissance. I'm listening to it right now. 6. It's the type of visual treat that only Disney could create. They get a lot of millage out of the ice powers and all the fantastic imagery they result in. 7. Even Olaf the Snowman, the obvious comic relief everyone thought was gonna be the worst thing ever, is kind of great. The movie knows when it's appropriate to whip him out for a healthy laugh and when to restrain him and let the drama happen. He's genuinely likeable (thanks in no small part to Book of Mormon's Josh Gad's performance), and his lack of understanding of what freeing the land from winter and bringing back Summer will mean for him adds an unusual layer of sadness to his character. The movie mostly plays it for laughs, but it's there, and it becomes quite poignant in the third act. Just to be clear, it's not entirely perfect. Maybe the songs could have been paced a bit better (like most Disney movies, the first half is flooded with music while they become more scarce in the second half), and I think the climatic scene could have used just a wee bit more umph (though it should be noted that there is still a considerable amount of umph). While the movie does a great job of reinventing the Disney Princess movie, if you have a genuine problem with Disney fluffiness and magic in general, than you might not be all too into this. Then again, I'm posting this on MLP Forums, and I'm guessing most of you probably don't have a problem with that. So yeah, Frozen is great. Really, truly, beautifully great. Really hope this is an indication that Disney is entering a new golden age. Everyone go see it. NOW. It gets a 9/10.
  6. May not exactly be horror, but this is easily one of the most important movies EVER. At the very least, no King Kong means no Jackson Lord of the Rings or Angry Video Game Nerd, so I think the Eighth Wonder of the World deserves a post. Awesome. - Partially inspired by the true story of a Komodo dragon stolen from its native environment and brought to New York, where it died shortly afterwards. - Special effects god Willis O'Brien was hired to work on this film after his dream project, Creation, fell through. Many of the dinosaur puppets built for that movie were used here. - Fray Way took on the part of Ann Darrow partly because she saw something in M.C. Cooper's enthusiasm, and partly because she was promised a role opposite the tallest, darkest leading man in Hollywood. - Kong's roar is a lion roar and tiger roar stuck together and played backwards. - It is said that Carl Denhem is basically a fictionalised version of M.C. Cooper (right down to both of them willing to stand in the path of charging animals to get a good shot), while the more stern and serious Jack Driscoll was co-director Ernest B. Schoedsack. - Two separate Kong's were used in the movie. One of them still survives and currently takes shelter in Bob Burn's basement. - Because film composting (putting several layers of footage together, kind of like green screen) did not exist in 1933, the special effects team had to get creative whenever there were several different elements in a shot outside of the stop motion. Of course, you had the use of actors acting against a rear projection of the monsters and miniatures, but shots where the special effects themselves were the focus required something more clever than that. The most insane solution used was to take frames of the live action elements, like the cast, place them within the miniature set, and animate it along with the stop motion. In scenes where you had a bunch of different elements, like Kong's lair, which had smoke, water, two human actors, and Kong and a giant snake... ...things got crazy. - Willis O' Brien leaked false information on how the special effects were achieved so as to maintain the illusion. As such, while we know the basic techniques used on the film, we will never know the specifics of what Brien did. Just as he intended. - Many critics praised how realistic Kong's fur was and how it seemed to move with his breathing or stand up on edge when he was shocked. This was, of course, the hands of the animators leaving impressions on the rabbit fur used on the puppets. - The scene where Kong attacks the elevated train was added in late in production to beef up his rampage in New York. - Cooper and Schoedsack's love of wrestling came in handy when it came time to choreograph the fight with the T-Rex. They acted out the whole scene for the animators. http://youtu.be/uYWSOzFMZjg In the 2005 remake, the last third of the T-Rex fight is an exact recreation of this original fight. - The film's first rerelease saw several scenes deemed too risque or violent for the masses were removed, such as the scene where Kong takes off Ann's clothes and sniffs them, or when he drops people to their doom or stomps on them. - The planes in the climax of the movie are a callback to Cooper and Schoedsack's days as fighter pilots. - The most famous deleted scene of all time has to be the "lost spider pit" sequence, in which the crew members who fell off the log into the chasm survived, only to be eaten alive by giant spiders and a variety of other nasty things. The scene, by all accounts, was apparently so creepy and disturbing to contemporary audiences that, according to M.C. Cooper, it broke the movie; several people left in the middle of the scene and the people who stayed wouldn't stop talking about it through the rest of the movie. Cooper took it upon himself to cut the scene out. It was promptly lost and became the holy grail of early sound cinema, with only a few images and puppets surviving. Peter Jackson took it upon himself to not only essential remake the scene in his 2005 version, but, in an attempt to understand Willis O'Brien's work, led the creation of an authentic recreation of the scene, along with another deleted scene featuring a triceratops, stop motion and all. We may never know how accurate it is, but it's pretty damn cool. - Ernest B. Schoedsack tried to get Willis O'Brien and his team nominated for an Oscar, but to no avail. - Once they get off the freaking boat, the 2005 movie is actually pretty sweet. Can't say the same for the shoddy 1976 film, Lebowski Origins: The Dude, though it does contain one of my favorite bits of movie trivia ever. This movie was a attempt on producer Dino De Laurentiis's part to make a movie that would outdo Jaws as the biggest movie ever, a goal he pursued with a pathological edge. Hoping to sit butts down in the theater, De Laurentiis came up with, like, the best idea ever: while the original had to rely on obvious stop motion, they were gonna build a giant ape robot. And the insane part is that nobody told him this was a logistically retarded idea. They actually built a giant ape robot with the intention of using it throughout the move. Can't say I wouldn't go see a movie that was advertised with the use of a giant ape robot. Shockingly, the thing looked like utter crap. That piece of junk could only be used for the scene where Kong breaks out of the cage, and even then for only a brief few seconds. Not sure if I understand the artistic decision to make Kong look like he's having a stroke. This totally-worth-it enterprise crippled the effects for the rest of the movie; Kong ended up just being makeup artist Rick Backer (the guy behind the werewolf stuff in An American Werewolf in London and Michael Jackson's Thriller) in a meh-looking ape suit, and most of the dinosaurs and monsters were scrapped, leaving a single snake to fight Kong. So yeah, boo to that movie, oodles of love to the original. Thank you for proving to the world what film-making could do back when every movie was essentially a play. Kudos to Kong.
  7. Couldn't find a good gif, so I made one. The King of the Monsters deserves no less. I've provided the following tune to establish the evening's tone. Please repeat the song how many times you need to finish reading this. - Originally envisioned as a giant octopus, before the look of a giant ape with a mushroom shaped head (because mushroom cloud) was considered. - "Gojira" is a combination of the Japanese words for "gorilla" and "whale". A popular idea has it that this was the nickname of a guy who was working at Toho at the time. "Anguirus" was considered, but ultimately saved for Godzilla's greatest monster ally. - It varies depending on which continuity we're dealing with, but as of right now, Godzilla stands at 80 meters (267 feet), weighing 55,000 tons. - The roar is accomplished by rubbing a leather glove down the strings of a bass, similar to the TARDIS sound effect. - The original was made practically at the last minute; Toho needed to make a movie, any movie, and fast. Producer Tomoyuki Tanaka got the initial idea for the movie during a plain flight by taking a bunch of random magazine covers and stories and mashing them together. The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms served as the basic idea of a giant monster, and Godzilla's origins (animal that was mutated by nuclear fallout) came from a story about a U.S. bomb testing mutating the local tuna population. - This pressure to get something done fast meant they had to abandon the use of King Kong-style stop motion effects. Thus, they brought in the suit. And unfortunately for the man inside it, it was a wearable hell. A drain had to be installed to easily let sweat out, and it could only be worn for 3 minutes at a time. - King Kong vs. Godzilla remains the highest grossing Godzilla movie ever. - Godzilla vs. DESTOROYAHHHHH!!!, which ends with our favorite reptilian anti0hero dying, really was meant to be the last Godzilla movie for awhile. That is, until the 1998 American remake sucked so freaking hard that Toho decided they needed to make a few more to appease all the pissed off fans. Within the movies themselves, the filmmakers took every chance they could manage to take a shit on Zilla (the American version), even going so far as to have that crappy version of Godzilla fight the real one in the (for now) final movie, only to be taken down in 13 seconds. Huh. Seems I don't know too many Godzilla fact-o-roonies. I am sad. I'm gonna have to make up for this one. In the meantime, have this.
  8. So...yeah, go see the movie. I wish I could say more, but I don't want to spoil anything outside of the fact that it's really freaking great. It has this fantastic dreamlike quality that gets refreshingly trippy and existential, love the sense of scale present in several of the scenes, every second was so jam-packed to the brim with jokes, sight gags, and legitimately awesome action bits that I'll probably enjoy it the second, third, etc. number of times I watch it (probably more because there won't be terrible audience members), love the moral (the only movie in recent memory to actually go full-on with the whole "anyone can be the chosen one" theme), it looked amazing, it's incredible how engaged you are despite the fact that literally every scene features some sort of self-mocking gag, and it goes without saying, but Unikitty and Benny the 1980's Spaceman were the absolute best. Did not know Charlie Day was in this. It was a better action movies than most action movies nowadays. It was a better Batman movie than The Dark Knight Rises. It was a better MLP movie than EQG. It's like someone took the opening of Toy Story 3, expanded it to an entire movie, combined that with Who Framed Roger Rabbit and 2001: A Space Odyssey, and set out to make an awesome parody of The Matrix that might totally be better than The Matrix. And then Batman's grunge song about his dead parents and how awesome the color black is plays over the credits. Go see The Lego Movie. http://youtu.be/StTqXEQ2l-Y Your move, Boxtrolls.
  9. I do not particularly enjoy how this came out, but it's definitley better what I was doing a few weeks ago, so have it anyway. May vector, depending on how I feel tonight. Either way, Happy Hearts and Hooves day, everyone. UPDATE: NOW WITH VECTOR!!!!! Deviant Art link, peoples!
  10. It nearly slipped my memory, but a quick double-check on my profile confirms that today is the anniversary of me joining the forums. Wow. I first found the site in the wake of "The Crystal Empire". I was so excited by that awesome episode and all the rumblings it caused in the mythology of the show that I had to listen to and read every theory that came out of the woodwork, so I searched for a pony-specific forum and came across this one. I then spent the next three months or so lurking about, absorbing all your knowledge and crackpot delusions (which were very well written nonetheless), and when Twicorn became a thing that was totally gonna happen, I decided to make the leap and became a member of this forum. And the whole thing just sort of snowballed from there. My commenting on the last few episodes of the season gave way to my reviewing of the whole of S3, which then gave way to anticipation of S4 (coupled with that whole EQG ordeal) which then gave way to an endless, pointless, but totally worth it wasting of time with you knuckleheads. I made friends here, of course. @Sir.Flutter Hooves was always there to be overly friendly to everyone, would be ready to spew off some random and nonsensical but ultimately enlightening fanon with me (we have to do that again sometime), and @Edgeworth1001, who joined shortly after me, was always a pleasure to associate with. @Batbrony's love of Derpy has always been an inspiration to power a nation. @Fhaolan was is an exceptionally cool dude, and incredibly tolerant of my constant ramblings of the Whovian variety. By the way, I'm reading his story "Terror of Tartarus", and it's aces. You should all read it, too. @Accellerant is always there to cheer me up and encourage me when I am at my lowest points, @~StatesTheOblivious~ and I forged a bond in the heat of our battles to defend Sparity to the last, is just a great dude to mess around with, is able to withstand my sarcasm and dorkery like no one else here, it's always a joy to talk about the quality of new episodes with , and , or Godot, or whatever, is one of the coolest guys here, period. And likes Brazil, so that automatically makes him my friend. I could name drop some more people here, but just assume everyone here is a fantastic human being (at least I hope most of you are human beings), and that I'm better for knowing each and everyone of you Being on these forums have given me something to do for the past year of my life. It's through here that I regained my interest in drawing and associating with other people outside of whatever social circle I'm in. As of now, this is the closest thing I have to an active social media source, and it's always been encouraging that I have a group of people I can talk to at the end of the day. I'm not always the best person to associate with, and I'm sorry for that. I'm a bit spiky, I tend to take my emotions out on others frequently, I'm a wee bit too facetious or confrontational at times, I curse way too bucking much, and when I dislike something, I dislike it hard. But I truly appreciate the friendship I have with this community, and it's through you guys that I experience this wonderful, silly, impossible show that we've all taken a liking to. And so, after all is said and done, after all the badly photographed sketches which then became weirdly vectored art, all the the theories regarding why Fluttershy keeps all her friends' dresses in her cottage, the arguments in defense of Rarity, the surprisingly controversial banners, the illegal breaking of people's status updates, the infrequent reviews, the promised Weeping Angels which I am so still totally doing, the art blocks, the words of kindness, the ballooned ponies of the new and improved variety, the weird requests for art, the obsessive amount of focus on The Day of the Doctor, the diabeetus, the horror movie trivia, allusions to stuff no one really cares about, the enormous amounts of typos,, and my ultimate quest to defeat the system and my eventual triumph in the form of a feature on EQD, I just want to say, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. Thank you all.
  11. Had fun doing the last one, so I made a less disturbing sequel. Spike: "Feeling better?" Rarity: "Whatever do you mean, dear?" Spike: "Yesterday you seemed pretty--" Rarity: "Oh, that? That was nothing, just a little releasing of steam. It certainly wasn't anything to be taken seriously as an affront to your character." Spike: "Is that all it was?" Rarity: "Why would you think otherwise?" Spike: "You threatened to do some very uncouth things with the blunt end of your sewing machine if I didn't make you more cookies." Rarity: "Details, darling, details." Here's the Deviant Art link if you are so inclined.
  12. ...THIS is the greatest animated villain song of all time. God, was that special stupid.
  13. Hey, it's the end of the year, and everybody else is doing a Top 10 list, so why the heck not. This isn't going to be the prestigious list, and there are several "must-see" movies I never got around to watching before the end of the year (sorry, 12 Years a Slave and Wolf Children), but these are the movies that impressed, entertained, and stuck with me the most, and even if I change the order later, they still stand as the best examples of what I liked at the movies this year. So let's get this ball rolling! 10. Blackfish An ferocious expose of the circumstances surrounding the deaths of several SeaWorld trainers in "accidents" involving performing orcas. Unflinching, eye-opening, and heartbreaking (a scene involving a calf being taken from its mother is particularly hard to watch) to the last, this well-made piece of nonfiction may very well change how you look at performing killer whales and dolphins, but how animals think and feel altogether. Somewhere down the road this may end up being the movie that brings about change for the better, and it's worth checking out (it's on Netflix Instant as of right now), if only because it's really good. 9. Rush The power of this movie is that you'll end up being involved in the central conflict between two equally ambitious and intriguing men (both performed brilliantly by their respective actors) whether you care about Formula-1 or not. It's technically impressive, emotionally intense, incredibly lean, and exciting and engaging all the the way through. The best sports movie since Warriors, and another sign that we need to afford director Ron Howard more respect. 8. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Maybe it's over-bloated and uneven in terms of pacing and tone, but gosh darn it, I'm having a lot of fun with this trilogy. The cast is as enjoyable as ever, the world feels alive and tangible, the action scenes and special effects are top-notch, the emotional core of the story hits harder than in the first one, and it touches upon an aspect of the One Ring that the original trilogy never really explored well: the fact that it empowers its bearer as much as it is twisting him (Martian Freeman's acting when Bilbo realizes he isn't killing in self-defense anymore is fantastic). And then there's Smaug, and he's just about the coolest thing ever. Seriously, see this on the big screen just to witness his awesomeness as effectively as possible. And the barrels. 7. Iron Man 3 This ended up getting a lot more decisive than I anticipated, which is odd, because this is easily the best of the series. Whereas the first two felt like they were made up as they went along, this one is guided by director Shane Black's vision of a character who feels like he has genuinely been changed and shaken by the stuff he's been through. It's fun as hell, the action sequences are varied and memorable (they actually figured out how to use the Iron Man suit without relying on it as the crux of the story), I really dug the twist in the final act, and the Iron Legion battle is the greatest toy-commercial-in-a-movie ever. It manages to subvert most of everything that makes superhero threequels fails and gives us a satisfying conclusion that could serve as the perfect capper to Tony Stark's cinematic adventures if they chose to do so. 6. This is the End Sort of shocked by how much I liked it when it came out and how much I still like it. The finest raunchy comedy of the year, do in no small part to the actually epic apocalypse stuff and the obvious fun all the actors are having playing skewed and often insane versions of themselves. It's just a big, dumb ode to friendship that made me lawl more than any other movie I saw this year. You better be fine with demon penises, though. 5. Gravity Some of the stuff in the third act is a bit wonky, but the special effects and sound design are so mind-blowing, the directing so masterful, and the central performance so compelling that you can't help but not be engaged. Unless your looking for technical details to complain about, then apparently your in good luck. Only time will tell if the movie still works as well on the small screen, but at least it'll still be a well-executed roller coaster ride that proves that roller coaster movies don't have to suck. Also, best musical score of the year, bro. 4. The World's End The things that made Shaun of the Dead and Hott Fuzz great are in effect here: great characters brought to life by talented actors (Simon Pegg turns in his best performance yet), a great mixture of broad humor and moments of it that reward the thinking man, an insane level of foreshadowing, genre elements that are taken almost completely seriously, homages and shout-outs that will please the geekiest without confusing the unknowing, and an exploration of maturity and responsibility that feels thought-out and fully realized. But this time there's also robots full of blue stuff having martial arts fights with a surprisingly capable Nick Frost, so yeah, this is mandatory. 3. Mud I didn't expect to like this one as much as I did. I think what really caught me off-guard is just how plain watchable it was: the characters feel real and are interesting to watch, the southern setting is shown-off in all its beauty and detail, the cinematography is fantastic, and it's a very involving story from beginning to end. Matthew McConaughey turns in a great performance as the titular Mud, but it's the young Tye Sheridan that really carries the weight of the movie on his shoulders. I dunno, when you get right down to it, it's just a feel good southern drama. But it's a really good feel good southern drama. 2. Frozen I liked this one enough to write up a blog post just tell people that it's one they have to see, and I still feel that way. It combines Pixar's expert storytelling and attention to emotional nuance with all the nostalgic trappings of the Disney Princess genre while still taking it new, often subversive directions. The voice cast is great, the songs are phenomenal, the animation is expressive, the imagery is imaginative, and they somehow made that Jar-Jar Binks snowman that everyone knew they were gonna hate and turned him into something hilarious and lovable. It's easily the best Disney movie in awhile and can very easily hold it's own with the Renaissance movies themselves. 1. The Wolf of Wall Street It's Goodfellas if everyone was a raging douchebag stock broker, complete with clever narration by the main character, a progressively degenerate biography filled with drug abuse, and an ironic glamorization of a lifestyle earned by being a bit meaner than the next guy. This is officially Leonardo Di Caprio's best performance, which is bolstered by a supproting cast that is obviously having a great time playing such horrible people. But even when it's so steeped in criticizing the world of stocks and the people who exploit that system, the movie still manages to display the humanity of the debauchery's ringleader; like Martian Scorsese's best work, it's all about showing that buried within that corrupt broker or gangster or unhinged vigilante is a fallible human being. It may be three hours long, but it's so fun, fascinating and unrelenting that you never notice. This one definitely has the potential to become the next Fight Club (though I guess we should be prepared for an entire fandom that misses the point of their favorite movie). And that's pretty much it. Happy New Year's, everybody!
  14. I've had this in my head for a few days now. I think I'm spent on this subject matter for awhile.
  15. - I did another Sparity art-thing. - I got watched on DeviantArt by Calpain. - I rewatched the complete Game Grumps: Sonic 06 saga. - I ate a lot of pizza. - I posed as a woman and married Doctor XFizzle. - I did not start that Weeping Angels art.
  16. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=QIZi6tk_T1Q "Some of what I will tell you relates to events in the future. Not only on this planet but also on others whose existence you don't even know of. But my knowledge is scientific fact. Now, Davros has created a machine creature, a monster which will terrorise and destroy millions and millions of lives and lands throughout all eternity. He has given this machine a name, a Dalek. It is a word new to you, but for a thousand generations it is a name that will bring fear and terror." - The Fourth Doctor Interesting little tidbit: Doctor Who was originally meant to be an educational show of sorts, with each serial presenting a new period of history for the characters to explore. The Doctor himself wasn't even created to be the main character, just the means as to how the real protagonists traveled through time. Thus, the original producers were trying to steer clear of the normal tomfoolery you'd see in sci-fi shows in the 50's and 60's. This was to be a classy affair, you see, and the number one rule was that there were to be no robots or bug-eyed monsters. An admirable effort, to be sure, but to be frank, it was one that would have severely limited the lifespan of the show. There's only so many times you can do "people get captured by ancient civilization" before the show gets stale, and while the initial, totally bizarre concept of a police box actually being a gigantic time machine on the inside was enough to peek people's interest, most people back then probably wouldn't hold interest in the show long after that. Yes, as utterly unique a concept it is, the adventures of the Doctor and his companions would have faded into oblivion after a couple of seasons if this original plan had gone unchanged. Fate decided otherwise. The production of the first serial, involving the Doctor's introduction and a couple of angry cavemen, was drawing to a close and the producers were stuck without a story to move ahead with into the next story. Looking for anything to produce, the crew were stuck with a script written by then 33 year old Terry Nation. Unlike the type of stories that the producers intended for the show, this one was most definitely a sci-fi tale, and one that even had antagonists that was both robots and a bug-eyed monsters. But these beings weren't just guys in suits. Nation had something else in mind. Having grown up in WWII, he wrote these new foes to be allegories for the Nazis; faceless, oppressive, and ruthless conquerors who sought total domination of the universe through the destruction of anything that did not meet their ideals. As designed by Raymond Cusick, they were made to look more like tanks than living things, hinting at the lack of humanity that now defined the creatures forced to lived inside these exoskeletons after years of their hate-fueled war on others left them mutated beyond recognition. They never spoke but instead shouted, always angry and always ready not just to kill, but to exterminate, as if everything else was merely vermin that needed to be wiped out. It didn't fit the original idea behind the show at all, but hey, when you have lemons, produce them because no other scripts are available. And thus, the serial was made, and on December 21st, 1963, the world caught their first glimpse of Terry Nation and Raymond Cusick's weird, scary, and all-around fantastic aliens, the Daleks... ...and the rest is history. It's a known fact that if it wasn't for the Daleks, Doctor Who wouldn't be around today. The overnight popularity of the creatures secured the show firmly in the public's eyes and kept it from fading away. The design of the Daleks, intentionally or not, were ready made for mass marketing, and the BBC took full advantage of that. "Dalek-Mania" became a thing, and any new episode featuring them became the thing everyone had to watch that week. Entire generations in the U.K. shared the experience of "hiding behind the sofa" in fear of the Daleks, who became as iconic as the Doctor himself, if not more sure. The show was able to ride that success to the point that when they more or less went on hiatus during all of the Second Doctor's run and half of the Third Doctor's, Doctor Who was able to survive. It kicked the door wide open for the creative process behind the show too. The reason this show has been able to stick around for fifty years is that its able to constantly reinvent itself do pretty much whatever it wanted to. Having the characters escape a prehistoric fight for survival and then have them encountering alien warriors on a post-apocalyptic planet in the next story demonstrated the limitless possibilities. The Dalek's inception is almost as important as the idea that the protagonist would constantly regenerate into a completely new character in defining this show as one that would never easily be defined. It seems the Daleks growing stronger in opposition to the Oncoming Storm is a two-way street. So yeah, I know we already celebrated the Doctor's 50th anniversary, but certainly some of the greatest villains of all of science fiction and fantasy deserve some love, too. So here's to 50 years to the Daleks, the reasons we still care about the Doctor after all this time. For although the Daleks will create havoc and destruction for millions of years, I know also that out of their evil must come something good. Plus explosions. This pleases me. Have some awesome bad guy music. What's your favorite Dalek story/moment? Sound off in the comments OR YOU WILL BE EXTERMINATED. EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINAAAAAAAAAA--
  17. I plan on doing a top 11 list for the best stories later, but we might as well get the bad ones out of the way first. Save the great stuff for last, as it were. No point sugarcoating this intro: these episodes are pretty freaking bad/not good, and demonstrate the worst that Matt Smith's era had to offer. Probably not definitive, though some of these picks are pretty hard to argue with. So, let's get this over with. 5. The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe Any scene where the Doctor is trying to impress the children is hilarious and the final scene where he returns to the Ponds after two years is sweet, but everything else is a bit of a slog. It's immensely cheesy, even for a Doctor Who Christmas special, not enough happens to warrant a 60 minute runtime, and I feel sorry for any little boy who had to sit through that "anyone who is not female is automatically weaker" section with their sisters. Unlike the much better special from the previous year, this one doesn't do anything interesting with the work it's paying homage to. 4. The Angels Take Manhattan Sure, the Ponds' departure is heartfelt and allows Smith another chance to showoff how good an actor he really is. Unfortunately, it doesn't make up for how much of a mess the rest of the episode is. The arbitrary rules involving time travel are flimsy at best and frustratingly arbitrary at worst, it's overblown like the worst of Russell T. Davies's run, and the Angels are no longer effective, with the major visual gag behind the episode only serving to make everything more illogical and questionable. 3. The Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon Sorry, but this episode really, really rubs me the wrong way. It starts off intriguingly enough and it sets up themes that would be handled by better episodes later, but it's disappointment from there. It's a very unsatisfying and confusing tale that can't stand on its own and features a large amount of style and made-to-be-iconic images over being able to understand what the hell is going on. The Silence are cool and everything, but the way they are dealt with is a little too bloodthirsty for the Doctor. Why use cunning, wit, and diplomacy to defeat an enemy when you can just order their execution and shoot your way out of their base? Truly the work of a writer known for the cleverness of his scripts. 2. Journey to the Center of the TARDIS Should have been a fun, in depth tour that would please longtime viewers, but instead became a boring and surprisingly grim tale that only showed-off the TARDIS's hallways. The Doctor acts like a total asshole for no reason, the development of his and Clara's relationship and understanding of each other is erased for no reason (which begs the question as to why it was brought up at all), and it ends with possibly the most egregious example of "time reset button" we've seen in Moffat's run. For no reason. Poo to this one, folks. 1. Victory of the Daleks One of the all time worst Daleks stories ever (and that's saying a lot) and one that fails to live up to the awesomeness of its title and concept. Winston Churchill is cool and everything, but he isn't saving this one. It's silly in the worst possible way, it's tedious, it asks you to suspend your disbelief way too many times, the characterization of the Daleks is off, it's themes are empty and serve only as window-dressing, and it all builds up to an embarrassingly-awful Dalek redesign that nobody liked. Except for the people selling the new action figures, that is. "YOU WILL COH-LLECT US ALL OR YOU WILL BE THE OUT-CAST ON THE PLAYGROUND!!!" Never before or since has an episode of the show been so blatant in its intention of selling merchandise, and three years later it's still a low point for Moffat's run. Glad that's done. On to the good stuff later. Sound off in the comments if you agree/disagree, have another episode you think is worst.
  18. DHX must have gotten Champion RD92's dream journal mixed in with the script pile again. This is happening too often...OR MAYBE NOT ENOUGH. "Daring Don't" By Dave Polsky Oh man, I'm really late on this one. The next episode comes on in a few hours as of this writing. I really should have been done this write-up by now. Some would even argue that my opinion may have been "tainted" by the flood of wildly differing assessments that have cropped up since. Thankfully, I never look at any opinion that is not my own ever, because screw perspective. Joke's on you, I fell asleep during the last 20 minutes of Ratatouille! I'm guessing there really isn't anything I could add to the conversation that hasn't already been said, though. Overall, it's...okay. It's flawed. Very flawed. Time has decided to be unkind and is slowly revealing more flaws with each ounce of hindsight. Is it as bad as I've heard some people say? Definitely not; I can think of several episodes that are much worse and actively betrayed the show's overall quality. It doesn't even make me angry like "Just for Sidekicks" or that stupid cider ordeal did. There's just really isn't anything to write home about besides its entertainment and production values, but that's true of most of the episodes as this point. This is a little disappointing, seeing as how it comes from one of my favorite writers on the series. It may not be the more thematically-charged, sort-of-subversive story he's known for, but Dave Polsky can churn out a decent adventure yarn too. But whereas his other episodes of this nature are a pretty decent exercise in plot progression and weaving ideas and morals throughout all the scenes of monster attacks and epic pie wars, "Daring Don't" is really clumsy. Surprisingly clumsy, actually, given the writer. The initial charcater conflict that sets off this story is sort of lost in the ensuing chaos, the fact that the Daring Do mythology is real and totally happening without anyone knowing is weird and isn't dwelt upon nearly as much as it should be, half the Mane Six don't really affect the plot at all and could have easily been written out, and there's a lot of moments that feel odd. And they're not even nit-picky moments, you're actually thinking of this stuff as it happens. Like, the Mane Six don't even attempt to stop the burglars as they walk right past them on two separate occasions, and there's the question as to why Daring even kept the ring around in the first place if she was gonna destroy it anyway. The oddest moment of all is the tiresome third act sequence when Dash is sitting around feeling sorry for herself, because apparently the one thing everyone took from Toy Story is that we need a mopey scene where the main characters contemplate their regretful actions. I'm looking at you, Mulan. Yeah, I get it, Dash feels bad about Daring getting captured and stuff, and it ties into the who lesson about... ...actually, yeah, that's another problem: the moral is way too generic and murky all at once. Say what you will about Polsky's handling of morals in his pair of S1 episodes, but at least you could tell what he was going for, and they were both mature subjects to talk about, at least within the context of that fluffier first season. Dash's character arc isn't exactly clear here and the final codas here are daft as heck. Something about trust and believing in your own awesomeness or whatever. I think something was said about not putting your heroes on pedestals. Hey, that last one is sort of interesting. Yeah, I can see Polsky doing this thing where a Mane Six-er meets their idol, but they're jerks or something. It's be like that episode of Hey Arnold where Eugene goes all dark because his favorite action star is an asshat, so he puts on a leather jacket and everything. I miss my childhood. At least now I can check Hey Arnold and Vampire Diaries off my list of references to make. But I digress. Overall, the episode's plotting is what brings it down, what with its leaps in logic and suspension of disbelief and the whole "we really wanted to do these specific scenes but didn't know how to elegantly transition to them" vibe sort of hanging throughout the proceedings. Like I said, though, it isn't horrible. It's okay. The script, as clumsy as it is, does get a few nice moments from some of the characters, the fangirling is cute, it moves at a nice pace, the jungle setting and climatic Temple of Doom look pretty (S4 is really pushing environments that create dynamic lighting), many of the Indiana Jones references put a smile on my face, and Polsky's episodes always come handy with a cool action sequence or two, and coming from someone who actively dislikes Twicane and memes of the sort... ...this face is love. This face is life. So yeah, I don't have an exact opinion on this either way, though I'm leaning towards saying this episode wasn't a bust. If you already don't like Rainbow Dash, this episode isn't gonna work for you at all, and further pondering on this will probably not do the episode any favors, but I enjoyed myself while watching it. Not that great, but not too bad either. 6/10, maybe 5/10 if it doesn't hold up on future viewings Random Thoughts - Favorite part was the pony version of Belloq, french accent and all. Was anyone else hoping one of the henchmen would reach into the fire to get the artifact and burn their hand? "OW!!! This is the worst thing that could possibly happen to me on this mission!" - To be fair to Toy Story, the mopey scene in Sid's room totally works and actually means something. - Actually, y'know what, Ahuizotl was awesome. That part where he just charges out of the woods and he's all pissed off was pretty sweet. - You'd think Celestia would be on top of anything that villain could use to control the sun, or that Daring would know enough to know that having the Elements of Harmony on your side is an obvious advantage over an army of kittens.
  19. Started off as a silly little Rarity drawing for practice, needed something for Rarity to be angry at. This is the only time I will ever draw this goddamn thing. May vector later. Sorry about how dirty this looks. All the erasers around here are horrible.
  20. Is...is the title a pun on a pun? ... Do you think this is a bucking game? What a terrible night to have a curse. "Castle Mane-ia" By Josh Haber Not a lot to say about this one, but it was actually pretty good. Great, maybe even. Takes what was sort of a weak premise for an episode and turns it into an entertaining romp with a decent amount of laughs. What's surprising about the humor is that a lot of it comes from timing, some well-placed silly sounds (Donald Duck is apparently trapped inside Applejack's head), and the VA's delivery. Even more surprising is that the one who almost steals the show from Rarity (Tabitha St. Germain is the queen of line delivery around these parts) is Fluttershy. In the last review, I briefly mentioned that I greatly appreciated that she wasn't just some redundant coward like she tends to be in more problematic stories, and that trend continues here, fortunately. She's still tense and everything, but she isn't spending the entire time cowering at every single shadow and is allowed to partake in the same comedy endeavors as everyone else. And by jove, is Andrea Libman great here. She's actually allowed to act and deliver lines, and she ends up being quite funny. I think in general, everybody really delivers here, from Tara Strong's delighted squeals in the opening scene to Ashleigh Ball's juggling characters who's frightened states sound different from each other. It helps that they're backed by a nice script penned by newcomer Josh Haber, who already seems to have a great handle on the personalities of the Mane Six, how they would reason going into the castle, and all the little nuances present in the character. I can't wait to see what he does with a more substantial story. The animation is also effectively funny. Not as extravagant as the premiere, but you can tell they're still experimenting with more three-dimensional posing and placement, and again, the timing is perfect. So many derp faces. I can't. To be sure, the ending is a bit predictable, if not actually really funny, and it's a little disappointing that the Journal of the Two Sisters isn't so much a tool for worldbuilidng so much as a new framing device for the show. I think the episode is enjoyable enough that I can forgive those two quibbles, though I'm sure others might not feel the same. Overall, an inconsequential but enjoyable episode. Nothing more, nothing less. 8/10 Random thoughts: - Why does the idea of a Pony of Shadows or even a ghost seem unrealistic to everyone? The ruling princesses have been alive for a thousand years and Fluttershy's flatmate is the Lord of Chaos. It's like how Indiana Jones never believes the object he's going after is supernatural right up until it starts melting people, despite the fact that the same thing happens literally every time. At this point, nothing should be out of the ballpark of plausibility for these people. - So, is the Pony of Shadows going to end up being real and part of a future plot? That final moment seemed to linger on those glowing eyes a wee bit too long for it to just be a random ending. I'm going to go ahead and assume the Pony of Shadows leads a Nightmare Moon cult or is Voldemort hiding out in the castle while he regains his strength via unicorn blood. - The episode does raise an interesting question about what, exactly, Celestia and Luna's childhood was like. Were they there by themselves for a few hundred years before getting bored and installing the trapdoors for the heck of it, or is the guy who designed the castle an ass? - This is the funniest I've found Pinkie since "Too Many Pinkie Pies". The imagination line at the end is my new favorite Pinkism. Your move, Amy Keating Rogers.
  21. WARNING: MASSIVE AMOUNTS OF PRETENSION INCOMING. PREPARE YOUR KIDNEYS. Oi, I'm a bit late on this one, aren't I? You all know how it goes, what with that other thing happening this weekend, snatchng up all my attention, and I come back down to Equestria and we have all these new speculation threads. Something about a scepter, I dunno. But, now that whole month of anticipation and surprisingly controversial forum banners* is over and I need to focus on MLP. So f*** off, Doctor. Oh geez, I'm sorry, that was mean. Well first of all, this should have been called "Twilight Princess." "Princess Twilight Sparkle" Written by Meghan McCarthy If I may go back to my disappointment with Equestria Girls real quick, just for a second, a personal problem with the movie that I've become aware of in the past few months isn't any direct fault of the film itself. It just has the misfortune of being the first official Pony media to come out after "Magical Mystery Cure", an episode that continues to split the fandom (as I don't need to tell anyone on these forums). After an episode like that, which left a considerable number of fans uneasy about the future of the everyone's favorite mutant equines, it'd be wise to follow it up with something that rewards those who were "loyal", as it were, wins over those who were unsure, and prove the people who said the show was done wrong. A follow up to "Magical Mystery Cure" had to do several things: it had to show that Twilight was still Twilight, it had to confirm that her relationship with her friends would go unchanged and that they would remain important, it had to prove that the series wasn't turning into just a commercial for toys, and most importantly, it had to maintain that FiM was still FiM. EQG didn't really do most of that. Twilight was still awkward and likeable and such, but everything else didn't really help alleviate any fears that Twicorn was the show's jump-the-shark moment. Twilight was separated from her friends and stuck with a bunch of mere carbon copies for the sole purpose of selling dolls; this was just an altogether weird follow-up to anything, let alone in a series that had to prove it wasn't going down the crapper fast. It's not surprising, then, that "Princess Twilight Sparkle" feels like it was a created to be a promise from DHX that they aren't done yet, and it's a pretty admirable effort to that end. Twilight is still Twilight (and a freaking pony), her being a princess rightfully affects the plot (it'd be weird if it didn't), but she's still living in Ponyville and has the same relationships with her friends that she always had, she isn't overpowered now (her friends actually have rescue her at a few points), and it's still FiM. Most of things many would hope for can be found here; it's still funny, it's till exciting, the characters are still well-rendered and splendidly voice-acted, and a season premiere means an obvious boost in production quality between seasons. The lighting is especially good here, which is appropriate given the half day/half night thing. While nothing here is as grand as the Crystal Empire's design, there is a fair amount of visual flair here; everything, from the angles to the way things are placed in a shot is much more dynamic than we've seen before. The first flashback in particular is a display of the extra effort put into putting these scenes together. That atmosphere, though. I think what I appreciate about this episode the most is the fact that it doesn't feel "mandated". While it was obvious Hasbro wanted to push new toys in "A Canterlot Wedding", "The Crystal Empire", and "Magical Mystery Cure", this episode feels less like they got notes to include something and more like they made the decisions they made because they wanted to convey a specific story and tone. They didn't include a song this time because they they didn't want or need one, and there's no real villain here (more on that later) because it's not the type of story they wanted to tell. There hasn't been a two-parter like this since "The Return of Harmony". Speaking of which... http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=RGqw2tvO8oA ...can we just take a moment to talk about this magical motherbucker? Yes, it seems another goal for this episode was to establish that "Keep Calm and Flutter On" did not "ruin" Discord. He is still the immense jackass we all know and love, except now he's kind-sorta helping them in the most annoying way he can, further proof that the writers really are trying to turn him into a full-blown pony version of Q. I love the fact that there's still that one-sided animosity between him and most of the cast; gives the story a bit of an edge in the second act. The only problem with Discord's presence, however, is that it sort of ties into one of the weaker aspects of the story: how uninteresting the actual threat is. Leading up to the premiere, many people assumed, based on everything we've seen so far and the description of the episodes, that Nightmare Moon would be involved in the proceedings. Of course, as we all now know, her inclusion here is a misdirection, as it's soon revealed that the little scene we saw story-boarded at Comic Con was in fact a flashback to Nightmare Moon's rise and subsequent banishment to the moon. I'm not butthurt over that fakeout, though. In fact, I thought it was a pretty cool surprise. We finally got to see that fabled and much anticipated confrontation play out on screen (and the Discord one, too, though that one's a wee bit too anti-climatic for my taste). Plus, it's a clever ruse: tease the fandom with the return of a fan-favorite villain only to switch her out to reveal that there's another force of evil behind everything. Therein lies the problem, however: the true nature of the vines is not nearly as cool as Nightmare Moon. That switcheroo only works if what we get instead is compelling in its own right, but it's not. Instead of being this epic, built-up-to return to the story that spawned the entire series we all hoped it would be, it's just a bunch of weeds that Discord planted and forgot about. I guess that's interesting in its own right, but it's played less like his motives are still ambiguous and more like he's just a jerk who didn't bother telling anyone. Maybe if it actually was the Everfree growing out of control, that could lead to some world-building and maybe an answer as to why the Everfree is the only "automated" area in Equestria and why that frightens everybody. But nope, just some scary vines, which somehow came packaged with spiky clouds and magic dampening. I've seen enough hentai to-- wait, no... It's kind of confusing, actually. If Discord knew enough about the Tree of Harmony to know that it was a threat he had to deal with, why didn't he recognize the Elements of Harmony? At least you could make the argument that he thought he had the Mane Six beat in "The Return of Harmony" and thus didn't expect the Elements to actually work. This is twice that this has happened, dude. But Discord isn't the only odd thing around here. There's a couple of moments in the episode that feel a bit ill-structured or included. The flashback-inducing potion is a bit random and a clumsy way of getting to those scenes. Surely there could have been a better way of conveying that information. The whole "Twilight heads back to town" bit is even worst. I get what they were trying to do thematically, but it's rushed (it lasts 5 minutes), isn't properly built up to in the rest of the episode, and is too illogical on the characters' parts. Since when is Twilight anymore vulnerable than anyone else, and why would you split up the group and send an Element away if you know that the entire quest revolves around getting all of them to the tree? I love when they get to the tree and Dash is all like "dammit, AJ, that was a stupid thing we just did." Speaking of which, the tree is right underneath the old castle? Then how come Celestia and Luna acted like they just went on an epic quest to the tree in the flashback? Where did all the scratches and bruises come from? Did they trip down the stairs too? However, getting to the tree does lead to the best moment of potential awesomeness in the whole episode: no Elements in Season 4. Maybe. The potential of this is obvious; without the Elements, the Mane Six can no longer just destroy evil with rainbows. If they come up against another foe, they'd have to rely on their own skills and cleverness to win the day (like they did in "Magic Duel"), and the writers would have to get more creative as a result. It also adds a bit of tension. Yeah, we all know that they'll win the day, but now we wouldn't know how, and the characters won't either. It'll be a more effective creation of suspense then, say, the princesses not being there, which, lets be honest, makes very little difference at this point. Two possible problems, though. Firstly, the show never really utilizes the Elements outside of the openers and finales anyhow, so or all we know, this doesn't affect the plot at all until the finale. Secondly... Sigh. I have a really bad feeling about this box. I hope to the goddesses that it isn't new Elements, but my gut tells me it is. Oh, and look, six locks! Gee, I wonder what the six keys to those six locks are! Truly a full-fledged mystery that requires a whole season to solve. Worst case scenario, we never touch on this box until the finale, it really is just the Mane Six's love or whatever that unlocks it, and it's just a bunch of Elements. I could be wrong. I hope I'm wrong. So yeah, it has a bunch of problems, but I enjoyed it. Simple as that. Doesn't usurp "The Crystal Empire" as my favorite two-parter or anything like that, but it's competent, and could end up being the setup for a glorious season to come. For all I know, the upcoming episodes could make this one better retroactively. It certainly seems to be promising that some big things, or at least that the show still has legs. Not too shabby. The Day of the Doctor was better. MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! 7.5/10 Random Thoughts: - Really like how Fluttershy is portrayed here. She's still her usual mousy self, but she seems to have genuinely grown stronger from past events, unlike "Magic Duel", where she started sucking out of nowhere. She's frightened by what's happening, but when push comes to shove, she stands by her friends and puts Discord in this place at the end. That was magnificent, by the way. - Never was a fan of how Pinkie would derail scenes in these two-parters for pointless comedy, though at least it's actually funny here. - Sweet, Celestia now has the pathos she deserves. Now expand upon it, please. - Maybe Discord actually planned for the Elements to be put out of commission. Anything's a possibility. - Wait, so the royal sisters were already princesses and alicorns when they took on Discord? And Celestia didn't have pink hair. Well, that just about ruins everything. I'm leaving. - That scepter is gonna be a thing at cons now, isn't it? Looking forward to that. *Does nothing please you people?
  22. Fifty years ago, on November 23rd 1963, two curious schoolteachers followed an unearthly child into a scrapyard only to find a magic blue box and the daft old man who stole it from his people and ran. And he's been running ever since. The continuing escapades of the grumpy, bumbling, dashing, crazy, sweet, bombastic, cunning, caring, damaged, heroic, and raggedy Doctor and his friends is one of popular culture's greatest adventures and has earned its title as one of the most beloved cult shows (if not the most beloved) of all time. To celebrate this once in a lifetime milestone in the life of one of my favorite things ever, I might as well share a quick list of my all time favorite episodes from every era of the series. This is by no means a definitive list; not every Doctor is represented equally, and there many "essential" episodes I have not yet seen ("Talons of Weng Chiang", "Curse of Fenric" just to name a few). Heck, some of these rankings might change later. These are just the stories that I think best define what I love about show and just plain entertain me the most. And hey, I've provided a link to the episodes I could find so you can check them out for yourself if you haven't already. So... 20. The Mind Robber Some would argue that the only episode in this serial worth watching is the first one (which does end on an awesome cliffhanger the rest of the story may not be able to live up to), but not me. It's a wild departure from the stories the Second Doctor usually found himself in, and features some of the best scenes of his run. And seriously, any story where the possibility that the Doctor may be killed by a unicorn is present deserves a watch. 19. The Green Death Karate fights, chase scenes, giant alien maggots, an environmental message that was way ahead of its time on television, insight into how the Third Doctor's attitude towards humanity had changed, and one of the more subtle and well-done of the companion departures. This episode has the works, baby. Did I mention the Doctor in drag? 18. The Girl in the Fireplace This was back when Steven Moffat's "girl who waited" concept was fresh and new, and he gets every emotion and laugh he can out of the Tenth Doctor's doomed sorta-romance with Madame de Pompadour. The clockwork repair droids are make for some cool enemies, the means by which all the strange sci-fi shenanigans are occurring is really clever, and David Tennant knocks it out of the park. But above all else, the episode serves as a microcosm of the tragedy of the Doctor's relationship with his companions. The curse of the Time Lords, if you will. 17. A Christmas Carol The best of the reboot's Christmas specials, offering a really clever twist on the tired recreation of A Christams Carol you see every show do at least once. Visually inventive, funny, and moving all at once, and the Doctor is at his most whimsical. One of my favorite Christmas specials period. 16. Remembrance of the Daleks After years of shoddy writing, debatable creative decisions and two Doctors who weren't allowed to be as great as they could have been, a change in producers results in the best Doctor story in ages. There's tons of great stuff that makes this serial worth watching: Sylvester McCoy is marvelous as the Doctor and takes the character into a new and interesting direction, the Daleks are presented as an intimidating military force with actual strategies and different classes (the Special Weapons Dalek is the best thing ever), there's a fanboy's treasure trove of callbacks to the very first story, and it's the debut of Ace, one of the most badass companions ever, as evidenced by the scene in which she messes up a Dalek with a baseball bat charged up with Time Lord technology. 15. The Waters of Mars Starts off as a pretty basic Doctor story, albeit one with a very creepy and visully unique central monster, but turns out to be much, much more: a dark exploration of the Doctor's evolving morals and what happens when he doesn't give a f***. It's not nearly as funny as Tumblr gifs would have have you believe. 14. Bad Wolf/The Parting of the Ways The best finale of the reboot so far and the last time the Daleks really worked. Relentless and religious in their desire to exterminate the human race, they cut the scheming weirdos schtick and become genuinely scary again, which in turn leads to my favorite Doctor/Dalek confrontation ever. It's exciting, emotional, instantly iconic, and it even ends with possibly the best regeneration scene ever. 13. The Aztecs My favorite of the First Doctor's purely historic adventures. The rule here, that history cannot be changed ("not one line") is promptly broken in the also very good "The Romans" (and how broken it is is explored further in "The Time Meddler"), but One's insistence upon it and his sympathising with Barabra as she struggles to save a doomed civilization offers a lot of insight into his personality and makes him much more three-dimensional; underneath that stern face and Edwardian jacket, the Doctor does indeed have a heart. Two, actually. 12. Vincent and the Doctor It may or may not make you cry, but if you don't feel anything during these forty minutes, I do not want to meet you. A beautiful and respectful tribute to one of the most tragic artists of all time, this story ends with an mature meditation on sorrow and happiness: a single good day may not be able to change a sad life, but it makes all the difference in the world. 11. The Pirate Planet The first Classic story I ever watched, and woo boy, is this a doozy. It's an very entertaining adventure with some fantastic stuff from Tom Baker, a great villain, clever comedy, one of the best uses of jelly babies ever, K-9 having a laser duel with a robot parrot, and enough out-there ideas for several stories. You expect nothing less of writer Douglas Adams, creator of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. 10. Genesis of the Daleks The Daleks are finally given an origin story and a creator in the form of Davros, who gives us some of the greatest moments of villainy in the whole of Doctor Who. Using only a handful of sets to create a tragedy on an epic scale, what really makes this story is the Doctor's ultimate decision on whether to wipe out the Daleks. While it's sort of obvious he ends up not doing that (you can't eliminate the things that sell the toys), the way he reaches his conclusion is thought-provoking and says a lot about his character. It was never about whether the Daleks deserved to be destroyed; it was about whether anybody has the right to make that decision at all. 9. Inferno Doctor Who's answer to Star Trek's "Mirror, Mirror", but with less facial hair. A well-paced and intense serial from eerie start to explosive end, the Third Doctor's best story sees him witnessing what happens when he fails to save the Earth in time in all its horrifying detail. All the weird elements in the story, from the impending apocalypse to the weird primordial zombie people fit together surprisingly well, and the alternate universe twist at the end of the first act is the kind of big, strange ideas that the best of series does well. MVP is Nicholas Courtney, who's great as the always twinkling Brigadier and his evil counterpart, the Brigade Leader. 8. City of Death Douglas Adam's other Doctor story is one of the most beloved of the Fourth Doctor's adventures, and with good reason. It's an utter delight of an episode, with a twisty and creative plot that swings between big idea sci-fi, light-hearted comedy, and a surreal caper that involves several clones of the Mona Lisa. The chemistry between Four and Time Lady companion Romana is at its absolute best, the resolution to the plot is one of the funniest moments in all of Doctor Who, and it comes complete with a random Monty Python cameo. That should be reason enough to watch this story. 7. The Doctor's Wife This may depend on whether you like Neil Gaiman's writing (because this is very much a Gaiman story), but it's an absolutely brilliant science-fantasy tale that provides some of the best moments of Matt Smith's tenure as the Doctor and introduces us to a new perspective that changes the context of everything we've seen so far. The TARDIS always had character (a quality the Doctor loves in any vehicle he uses), but now it is a character, and it's here that we learn, cheesy as it is, that the Doctor's love for his TARDIS is only matched by the TARDIS's love for her thief. 6. Blink An episode I keep thinking is overrated after a while, but then I watch it again and remember that it totally is as good as the hype says it is. The Doctor is only in it for a few minutes, but that's okay, because Carrey Mulligan is amazing as heroine Sally Sparrow, bolstered by a great supporting cast and a high production value that's much more cinematic than we've seen before. It helps that it has a ingenious script that utilizes time travel in an interesting way and dialogue that would later become some of the most meme worthy of the entire series. And of course... Probably the scariest Doctor Who story ever, and that's saying something. 5. The Caves of Andronzani The episode that is most often picked as the greatest story ever, and it certainly deserves every accolade it gets. Gripping and exciting from start to finish, the Fifth Doctor's final adventure features him at his most heroic and badass (leading to the show's best cliffhanger, in which the Doctor makes it quite clear that he has had it), pitted against fantastic villains in an intense situation that just keeps getting more dangerous and complex as it goes on. Penned by the all-time master of writing Doctor Who, Robert Holmes, this is how you have a Doctor go out in style. Even Colin Baker's tiny moment at the end is awesome. Seriously, go watch this. 4. The Deadly Assassin The first story to take place on Gallifrey, this is the episode that defines who the Time Lords are as a race, and more importantly, how they are as vulnerable as anyone else. It's a great conspiracy plot full of huge ideas (it had the Matrix before the Matrix was ever cool), bolstered by Tom Baker's excellent performance in the first Doctor story to not feature a companion. It's also the greatest Master story ever, despite the fact that he's absolutely nothing like his regular self. Gone is the suave, charismatic mannerisms of Roger Delgado, and this isn't the manic fun of John Simms. The Master here is a monster, fueled by pure vengeance and a need to prolong whatever life he has left, at any cost. 3. The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances Starts off simple enough, but soon becomes much more emotionally complex. I could go on and on about the near-perfect recreation of war-torn London and the interesting perspective of the the event that it takes, the glorious coolness that is Captain Jack Harkness, and one of the greatest and creepiest Doctor Who monsters ever (which has one of the more creative origins we've seen). But what makes this episode freaking sublime is the ending. It easily could have ended up being sappy or clumsy, but it ends up being a genuinely touching moment (I actually remember tearing up a bit) that perfectly sums up who the Doctor is. It adds a whole new level of sadness to any loss of life the Doctor suffers, because now e know how much saving people means to him. 2. The War Games The Second Doctor's adventures (and the black and white era) go out with a literal bang in the most exciting and subversive story the show had ever attempted to do at that point, and it delivers. Yeah, it's a whopping ten episodes, but there's so many new details about the nature of the War Games and crazy scenarios being added that the pacing just works and the story never drags. There's some great satire regarding the futility of war and the kind of people who would perpetuate it, as well as some great action scenes for 1960's television. But what makes this story an important classic (possibly the most important of the whole series) is the introduction of the Time Lords (who are actually kind of scary here) and the explanation that the Doctor's exile is a self-inflicted one. In one fell swoop, the show now has a mythology to tap into and the Doctor is given a level of pathos nobody knew he was capable of. Bonus points for one of the sadder companion departures and the awesome title card. 1. Human Nature Not a Doctor story in the traditional sense at all, but still a masterpiece of science fiction and fantasy television. Despite technically not featuring the Doctor at all, this is the story that best demonstrates that, once you get past the charm and the wonder, the Doctor can be an extremely dark character that borders on inhuman. But you can get past that, there's still something wonderful and worthwhile about his existence, and no matter how much pain he may seemingly bring along with him, the universe needs its Doctor. The entire thing plot is thematically charged, from the loss of innocence, to sacrifice and love, to the thin line that separates justice from vengeance. The production values are high, the villains are hammy in the best possible way, David Tennant turns in his greatest performance, I count at least three different tear-jerkers, and if there was ever a story to prove Martha Jones was a great companion, it's this one. And any show story that tells kids that there is an evil alien girl staring at them whenever they look in a mirror is worth a look in my book. Runner-ups: Midnight: Reaches John Carpenter levels of creepiness and paranoia, the Doctor's alien-ness is turned against him in an interesting way and the cast includes Merlin and Patrick Troughton's son. Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead: Cathrine Tate turns in some great stuff, the Vashta Nerada are great monsters, and the character of River Song, whether you liked how she ended up or not, is a fantastic concept. Pyramids of Mars: Awesome villain and sense of urgency that just increases as the story moves along. Planet of the Spiders: Jon Pertwee's final episode, which features a satisfying end to his interpretation of the Doctor and uber-creepy back-spiders. Turn Left: A mind blowing observation of how the smallest change in history can have the heaviest consequences, and a dark vision of what a world without the Doctor there to save it looks like. School Reunion: Sarah Jane Smith returned. That is all. Happy Birthday, Doctor. May you keep running forever more. Wait, this is a brony site. Better whip out the Forest Rain. Agree? Disagree? Think I'm an idiot? Rattle off in the comments with your favorites.
  23. The year was 1993, and the Doctor was dead. Well, at least his career as TV's favorite time traveling space hobo was dead. Yes, despite BBC's assurance that the beloved series was merely "on hiatus", all the signs pointed to Doctor Who being cancelled. After decades of alien-fighting, running down corridors, and dubious fashion decisions, the only way fans would be able to experience new Doctor stories were through audio serials and books. History became legend. Legend became myth. And for four years, the Doctor passed out of all relevance. But every once in awhile, the fans would catch wind of a possible continuation or special or what have you. At one point, a video release centered around the Fourth Doctor was given serious consideration, but fell through. As the 30th anniversary approached, a draft made the rounds at the Beeb in which the Seventh Doctor reunites with the Brigadier to do epic, explode-y battle with the Cybermen, but for reasons unknown then, that was dropped. The "Dimensions in Time" special that sprung up in its place, however, looked even more awesome. All five of the living Doctors, working side by side to kick ass and take names! Even Tom Baker, who only appeared in the last Doctor team-up story, "The Five Doctors", in the form of stock footage from an unfinished serial and a wax dummy in the promotional photos. This is how Christopher Eccleston should be included in The Day of the Doctor. And the past iterations of the Doctor aren't the only ones returning for the fun; several of his beloved companions would also make appearances, along with a Who's who of classic Doctor Who monsters. After all this time, it appears Doctor Who was finally coming back, and even if it wasn't for long, at least it would have been a glorious final outing for the character and his universe. Plus, it was the centerpiece of that year's Children in Need program, so not only was the Doctor coming back, he was doing it to aid children! And then the skimpy 15 minute special aired and it was the worst thing ever Yes, worst than that. Okay, maybe not that bad. So yeah, it's disappointing and badly produced, but what makes it truly stand out is the bizarre creative decisions they decided to go with . Instead of just having the Doctors just meet up with each other and defeat some monsters or whatever, they have this weird plot device where the Rani (the only Time Lord villain they could manage to get a hold of) is screwing with time, causing the Doctor to switch between his various regenerations. Sort of interesting idea in theory (and maybe one I could see Moffat having some fun with, if he ever felt like just going stupid for a second), but weirdly executed here, and a definite disappointment in a special where the main draw is all the Doctors getting together. Not only that, but BBC mandated that the episode have something to do with Eastenders, the channel's most popular show at the time (hence the axing of that Cybermen story). That would be funky-in-a-bad-way enough, but it's handled as clumsily as it could possibly be. The plot will just derail for a moment to focus on a bunch of random people nobody who isn't a British person in 1993 cares about. Also, BBC couldn't work out a deal with Terry Nation, the creator of and owner of the rights to the Daleks, so the Nazi pepper pots of doom, arguably the most iconic and popular thing associated with Doctor Who, doesn't make an appearance. Poo. It's one of those things that approaches a level too nonsensical to describe in well formed sentences, so here it is, in all its 3D "glory". Wasn't that insane!? Anyway, random thoughts on this matter: - The little segway into the special featuring Jon Pertwee is pretty cool, but only because Pertwee himself is awesome. He could be done up like a scarecrow and he'd still be the coolest mother in the room. - Anybody else shit themselves in fear when Patrick Troughton's decapitated head floated past the screen? What, was stock footage or still images on a monitor too not-creepy enough for you people? You have to subject us to this Uncanny Valley horror in conjunction with the loss of brain cells we shall certainly receive? - So then the theme song plays and it sounds like electronic ass. And no, speeding up the Seventh Doctor's opening does not make it suck any less. Quite the contrary. - Good news, guys, the Fourth Doctor, arguably the most popular Doctor ever, is in the special! Unfortunately, he spends the whole special stuck in what appears to be Max Headroom's colon. Unsure how much of this was Tom Baker just being like "whatever" and how much of it was the producers just being buttheads. Favorite moment is 3:20, when you can see it dawn on Baker how utterly asinine this whole affair is as his soul enters the fetal position. - , because we needed to be reminded the Rani is a bad guy. The image of the Rani tossing the First and Second Doctors' heads down the giant galactic energy toilet expertly balances being tasteless and hilarious.- The fact that every wall-circle in the Rani's TARDIS contains a living creature is even funnier. I like the Time Lord's expression, he's all like "I may not like this, but I accept that this is the way things are." - "It clashes!" was actually kind of funny. You win this round, Nathan-Turner. - You know, if you're going to keep cutting to those Eastenders cast, could you at least give them something interesting to do other than say stuff like "We need to make some money"? I have no idea what goes down in early 90's Eastenders, but I'm guessing that isn't exactly riveting within that show's context either. - Gotta love that time travel effect utilized here. The whole "looks like an unintentional video glitch" thing really adds to the production. - I get why the Doctor is switching regenerations, but how is Ace changing into all the other companions? - Sarah Jane is always awesome to see again, though I'm not sure why she looks like she just ate a fire flower. - The Doctor doesn't so much solve a mystery or try and figure out what's going on so much as he just wanders around and recites variation of the same info over and over and over again. Adventure ho. - Dat camerawork, am I right?! 360 degrees, bitch! - The scene where the monsters attack the Doctor is just the silliest darn thing. A number of them somehow look even worst than when they were on the show, most of them appearing in windows and behind little walls like a bunch of muppets. And you gotta love that Time Lord standing there feeling inadequate next to all those monsters. "No, seriously guys, he'll look intimidating! See, I gave him a gun!" - Worst cliffhanger? Worst cliffhanger. I voted for Big Ron on name alone. - "I took back what I said about a genius operator being behind these time jumps!" - Wait, how does that ensuing confrontation work? The Rani has them cornered, and then the Doctor starts having a migraine, and then the Rani starts walking away, but when the Third Doctor appears, it's like he just pulled off this mind-blowing trick that changed the tide of the battle despite doing absolutely nothing. And then Liz just walks right up to the Rani, and they have a non-struggle, and then an Eastenders chick sort of touches her arm and she "lets Liz go", despite never appearing to have her. Thankfully, Captain Yates is there to save us from this confusing scene. - It's always nice to see the Brigadier, and it's cool having him meet the Sixth Doctor, which he never did in the series. - Did...did the Rani just sit in that pub and wait for Romana to walk past the door? And that old guy is totally cool with witnessing a possible assault and not doing anything. - So the Rani is attempting to build a time tunnel out of Leela clones so she can cross over from the East to the West, which will give her the power to control evolution. - Once again the day is saved, thanks to a bunch of cables, random terminals, and the Doctors chanting random gibberish about believing in Santa Claus or something! SO SATISFYING! So yeah, that's "Dimensions in Time" for you. And you people thought Moffat sucks? These guys were perfectly happy with this being the only intended Doctor Who television story for years. What a time to be alive, is all I'm sayin'. Now let's bleach this awfulness with a much better Doctor Who Children in Need special.
  24. We're almost at the end, but I still find that there's a crap-ton of movies I wanted to do that I didn't get to do, so I've decided to work through a bunch of them in one post. Aren't we having some fun now? Get it? Because it's a lyric from that number. I'm...I'm funny. LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS - A adaptation of an off-Broadway show which is itself an adaptation of a movie Roger Corman legendarily shot in two days (and just so happens to be Jack Nicholson's film debut). - Actress Ellen Greene played Audrey I in the original stage production as well. - The dentist office set was originally covered in blood, but that didn't sit right with tests audience, so the scenes in the office were thus re-shot without all of the stains. This would no be the only thing to be cut. - No green screen or composite shots were used for the scenes involving Audrey II. Six different plants increasing in size were used over the course of the movie. Near the end, more cables were being used on the Audrey II puppet then there are in the Brooklyn Bridge. And sense the puppeteers could only move the puppet so fast, any actor in a scene with it (mostly Rick Moranis) had to act in slo-mo. - - My sister thinks Rick Moranis is cute in this movie. But now, we move from one cult classic to another, and this one is probably the cultiess of all the cult classics. Beneath its flashy varnish lies the tale of a young couple torn apart by their hidden demons and a strange but passionate man whose pathological pursuit of hedonism and pleasure, often at the cost of human life, brought upon his ultimate and all too tragic downfall. THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW. - Tim Curry's fabulous film debut. He reprises the role he played in the original stage production. - Dr. Scoot being pulled through a wall by the electromagnet was not scripted. The filmmakers realized that they had not made the laboratory set wheelchair accessible, so the only way to get that character in the scene was to have him crash through it. - Mick Jagger wanted to play Frank, Steve Martian tried out for Brad, and Vincent Price was the first choice to play the Criminologist. - The longest running theatrical run in history thanks to its popularity as a midnight movie. - No body knew Eddy's corpse was hidden under the dinner table, so when it's revealed, the shocked reactions are real. - Brad and Janet has been nicknamed "ASSHOLE" and "SLUT" by the fans, respectively. - Tim Curry gained weight after starring in the movie so he could distance himself from Frank. Speaking of Tim Curry... That's fugging hilarious. Easily the best of the televised Stephen King adaptations, though to be frank, that isn't saying much. It's like saying Red Dead Redemption is the best western game. What's its competition? Custer's Revenge? IT - The book was so damn long because King wanted to fit all his favorite monsters in there. Apparently, giant spiders is one of them. - Speaking of which, the spider became the ending because the budget couldn't handle the real ending. Much like Carrie, the entire town was suppose to get destroyed. - Tim Curry was apparently frightening to be around on the set, so everyone just kind of avoided him. - Seth Green, hounded by a werewolf (no pun intended) in this movie, plays a werewolf later on in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. - The actors actually got injured by the large amount of balloons in the library scene. So yeah, I guess that happened. Guess now would be a good time to get some other requests out of the way. Let's continue with a classy one. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK. THE BIRDS - Hitchcock was huge bird person long before making this movie. - Blue screen had to be abandoned for a different technique partway into production because the rapid movements of the birds made the shot look bad. - Tippi Hedren was actually cut in the face in one of the shots. - The owner of the restaurant allowed Hitchcock to shoot inside his establishment if the lead male character was named after him. Hitchcock agreed. - There's no "The End" card at the end of the movie because Hitchcock wanted audiences to have the feeling that the horror would never end. - Hitchcock required to be real. - At the film's London premiere, speakers were installed to play an assortment of bird screeches as patrons left the theater. Okay, what's the next request? Oh yeah! I HAVE SUCH FACTS TO SHOW YOU. HELLRAISER - It took six hours for Doug Bradley to put on the Pinhead makeup. - The original title, "The Hellbound Heart", was rejected by the studio because it sounded too much like a romance. - Filming the scene where Frank is spun around upside down covered in blood cause actor Sean Chapman to vomit. - Pinhead was in no way the "main" Cenobite; he was just given the most dialogue. - Due to a limited budget, all the special effects were animated by Clive Barker and "a Greek guy" over a single weekend. - It wasn't so much the content the MPAA was worried about, so much as the "intensity of the tone". Also, heads up guys, but I've never seen Mothra, nor have I been able to find any interesting facts on her solo career, so have this gif of Mothra dragging Godzilla like a punk. Hey, guess what, SE7EN. This is literally the only gif I could find that wasn't NSFW or spoiler-heavy. Seriously, if you've never seen this movie...damn. - Every single one of John Doe's creepy psycho-killer books was written out and packed to the brim with detail. As in, if you opened to a random page of any of those books, you'd find a fully-realized, thought out page. Pretty impressive, considering most of them are just seen in the background. - Kevin Spacey was cast two days before filming, and his involvement was kept as quiet as possible, in keeping with his tradition of trying to immerse the audience into the character he plays, as opposed to the fact that it's Kevin Spacey. - The studio hated the ending, but Brad Pitt refused to star in the movie if a single line was changed. - David Fincher wanted a super-skinny guy to play Victor. If you've seen the movie, you know why this is pants-crappingly terrifying. - The city the movie takes place in is never identified. - Rob Bottin, of The Thing fame, did the makeup effects for the movie. - - A sequel was in the works in which Morgan Freeman's character gets psychic powers. Guess this means I should do SILENCE OF THE LAMBS too. I'll admit, the part with the face made me jump. - The last film to take home the Grand Slam at the Oscars: Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Screenplay, Best Director, and Best Picture. It remains the only horror movie to ever win the top award. - John Hurt, Christopher Lloyd, Dustin Hoffman, Patrick Stewart, Robert Duvall, Jack Nicholson, and Robert De Niro all auditioned for Hannibal Lector. - The moths used for the film were flown to the set in first class. - Whenever someone is talking to Sterling, they are looking directly at the camera towards the audience. - Lector is only in the movie for 16 minutes. - Brooke Smith, Buffalo Bill's victim, actually became good friends with Bill's actor, Ted Levine, on the set. - The Lector voice was, according to Anthony Hopkins, a combination of Truman Capote and Katharine Hepburn. Wait, tomorrow is Halloween? Well how about some TRICK 'R TREAT? Seriously though, if you haven't seen this, do so, because it is a treat. Yes, pun intended. - Was suppose to be released in theaters in 2007, but got buried by Warner Bros for what I am sure are stupid reasons. - The appearance of Mr. Kreeg was based off of John Carpenter. - Little people make up most of the little kids in the background. The movie was shot at night and it was way past regular kids' bedtime. - Based on a Marvel Comic. - Sam is named after Samhain, the medieval festival that served as the origin of Halloween. - Remember that bitchy girl who leads that horrible prank? Guess who. And I can't finish this post without mentioning this. - Tim Burton did not direct this. That would be Henry Selick. He did design the movie and come up with the concept, which was inspired by Burton witnessing a mall taking down Halloween decorations and instantly replacing them with Christmas stuff. - The most difficult shot in the entire movie was Jack reaching for the door knob on the Christmas door due to the reflection of the forest. - Danny Elfman does the singing voice for Jack. - Was meant to be an official Disney animated film, which would have made it art of the Disney Renaissance, but it was deemed too scary. Well, Oogie scared the shit out of me when I was a kid for some reason, so I dunno, - The scene where Oogie's insectoid innards fall into the murky molten material was shot at 25 fps (real-time). - Tim Burton has said that Jack is probably his favorite character that he has created. - The killer snake is based off the sandworms from Beetlejuice. - Lock (the kid dressed like a devil) is totally Paul Reubens, and Dr. Finklestein is Uncle Lewis from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. Aw man, so many horror movies, so little time. Sorry if I didn't do a movie you wanted (I know one of you wanted Van Helsing, for instance). Tune in tomorrow for the final film in the blog series (I think you can guess what movie I'm doing), but in the meantime, have two awesome scenes from a couple of movies I didn't get around to doing: Best Van Helsing and Best Dracula fighting to the death... ...and the most iconic transformation scene ever. Seriously. They actually created a new academy award just to award this movie. I remember the first time I saw it; it was on TV (but on a channel where they didn't have to censor it), and I walked into it and thus had no context with which to work. It was the first "real" horror movie scene I ever watched, and it blew my freaking mind. Also, fun fact: it was that movie that inspired the music video for "Thriller".
  25. My first run-in with Michael Myers was not Halloween, but rather a night many years ago when I spent the night at my cousin's house. My older cousin was out for the night, so I was allowed to sleep in his bed. Coincidentally, he's a huge horror fan, and his favorite movie ever is Halloween. And thus, I spent the night surrounded by these huge posters of a blank, pale, emotionless face, and the blackest eyes. The devil's eyes. Staring down at me. No sleep was had that night. - Was born out of a desire to make a movie about babysitter murders. After doing some research, the producers found that, oddly enough, nobody had ever named a movie "Halloween" before. - Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee were both approached to play Dr. Loomis, but both turned it down. Lee would go on to say it was the biggest mistake he ever made, while Cushing would end up regretting turning down that other doctor role that was brought to him (more on that later). Donald Pleasence eventually took the job because his daughter was fan of John Carpenter's last movie, Assault on Precinct 13. - The mask is famously a William Shatner mask modified beyond recognition. - The name "Michael" is only said in the opening scene. From then on, the Shape is only referred to as "he" or "it". - Nick Castle, the man behind the mask for most of the movie, originally was just hanging out near the set to watch it get filmed. It was John Carpenter who offered him the chance to be a psycho killer. - The movie was filmed in the spring, so all the leaves on the streets were all fake and individually painted to look dead. They were reused after the movie wrapped, because we gotta protect the environment. - The Shape appearing out of the darkness was achieved via a hidden dimmer light. - The movie was shot out of order, so in order to help Jamie Lee Curtis stay consistent, John Carpenter created a "fear meter" that indicated how scared she should be in a scene. - The first cut of the movie did not go over well at its first screening; people just weren't finding it scary. John Carpenter decided he needed to "save it" with an awesome musical score, which he wrote in four days. Everybody was terrified after that. - The opening POV shot is actually three different shots cut together; the cuts are done when the mask is put on and before and after the murder. It took two days to shoot. - John Carpenter is a huge Psycho fan, as evident by his naming Loomis after one of the supporting characters in the film and the casting of Janet Leigh's daughter in the female lead. - It was Donald Pleasence's idea that his character's reaction to the final scare should be less shock and more "I knew this would happen." - Jamie Lee Curtis was unsatisfied with her performance and thought she was dragging the whole production down, which certainly contrasted with John Carpenter's enthusiasm. He actually rang her up after the first day of shooting just to tell her how great she was. - The Myers house has been relocated and now serves as a chiropractor's office. That's certainly a place I want people touching my spine. - "Don't Fear the Reaper" is playing on the radio while the Shape is driving behind Laurie. - Made on a budget of $325,00, grossed $47 million ($150 million if adjusted for inflation), making it one of the most successful independent movies ever. - If I had to make a list of the greatest horror movie shots of all time, this would most definitely. be near the top of the list: Classic. Well, I guess that just about wraps up FACTOIDS OF THE LIVING DEAD. Kind of bummed that I didn't do every single movie I wanted to do; Misery, Return of the Living dead, Gremlins, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, and The Omen, just to name a few. This wasn't really planned at all, just a stupid thing I decided to do out of the blue, but I'm glad some of you enjoyed this series. Thanks for sticking with me, I hope you learned a thing or two. As an added bonus, have this, Citrus's TOP 10 HORROR MOVIES. This is by no means a definitive list, but these are the movies I most often pick for my favorites of the genre 10. Poltergeist 9. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 8. Se7en 7. The Shining 6. Night of the Living Dead 5. The Thing 4. Evil Dead 2 3. Psycho 2. Jaws And of course, 1. Alien/Aliens HAPPY HALLOWEEN, EVERYONE! Play me out, Michael! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Btb7y41vXng&feature=player_detailpage