Action figures are good, but they can be better! All you have to do is become a customizer! Toys are like drugs except you need to find a place to keep them after the high wears off.
NY Toy Fair has been cancelled for 2021. In lieu of the big press show, many companies are doing smaller virtual conventions through the year. The most hyped was last week’s Hasbro Pulse Fest Fan Fest. Rather than spacing things out, Mattel, Diamond Select, & NECA decided to post similar events around the same time with less fanfare. They were all underwhelming to various degrees. I would’ve made more impulse pre-orders had Hasbro not suddenly jacked up the price of all their 6″ lines by $3. It doesn’t sound that steep on an individual basis, but it adds up when they encourage you to buy entire series of Marvel Legends to complete BAFs. With customers’ budgets already stretched thin by the terrible 2020, this feels like a precarious time to raise prices on non-essentials.
“Ach, I’m not some nouveau riche piker! I employ people to burn my money for me!”
The recent earthquake in Tulsa, Oklahoma heralded me finishing viewing HBO’s Watchmen! I finally got to watch it when HBO put it up for free Juneteenth weekend. Hot on the paws of Cats, here’s my cold take on HBO’s Watchmen! I did it thirty-five minutes ago. You’ve probably seen it by now too, but the nonlinear Spoiler Warning remains at one minute to midnight. Much like the original, it doesn’t center around a timepiece-themed team. I believe their continued omission is a mistake!
They’re leaving money on the table by not producing that vibrator.
After last week’s somewhat less horrific magic of
Captain Marvel: DC Edition SHAZAM!, I’m overviewing The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina season two! This is being touted as “Part 2” since it was filmed back to back with the first. Since most network shows are in the twenty episode range & take time off for the winter holidays, it’s arguable that it is still season one. So this headline might be premature! (Is the next group going to be called “CAOS Part 3″ or “CAOS Season 2 Part 1?”) As this batch is nine episodes to the first part’s ten, it feels appropriate to review the “bonus” holiday episode here too. Trigger warning for moral relativism in comparative religion & SPOILERS!
This is my hundredth blog! I don’t believe it either! Arithmomaniac readers may notice that there’s actually 101 entries on this blog, but I don’t count my reblog of Cain S. Latrani’s review of The Dolorous Adventure of Brother Banenose. Contrariwise this one is full of my own substantive content! I made it to 100 installments of Matt The Catania in under two years by sometimes posting twice a week. See, I can be productive when there’s no immediate monetary gain! To celebrate this milestone, I’m writing about whatever I damn well please (as opposed to those previous ninety-nine posts)!
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl is Marvel’s most delightful comic book. In other news, you can describe water in three states. This is a comic book that’s unashamed of making you learn stuff like how to count to thirty-one on each hand. Eventually it will teach me an entire college education’s worth of computer programming at a fraction of the cost! Where else can you get a Choose Your Own Adventure comic about defeating Swarm, the breakout villain of Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark? (Note to self: publish your review of S-M: TOTD while it’s still timely!) Marvel really should’ve put the romance cover to the second #8 (now do you see the folly of constantly cancelling & restarting series?) as the cover for the fourth volume to better match its title, “I Kissed A Squirrel & I Liked It.” (Sadly it lacks Squirrel Girl’s story from Secret Wars: Secret Love.) It, along with Mark Waid’s Daredevil, are the only things that have ever made me care about the Mole Man. Who knew Tricephalous was such a romantic? HawkJock is the worst, bro!
Squirrel Girl Beats Up The Marvel Universe! thankfully skews closer to Fred Hembeck Destroys the Marvel Universe than Punisher Kills The Marvel Universe. Did you know I was the first customer to get it signed by Erica Henderson & Ryan North the World’s Tallest Torontonian at NYCC? I read it months ago but didn’t review it until now because I don’t like being on top of things.
I asked for the personalization to prevent me from selling it … unless I find someone else named Matt.
I just wanted proof of the custom inscription, by my cat just had to make herself the center of photographic attention.
My dad shot me in the thigh with a Cold Steel razor tip broadhead blow gun dart. I am thankful he missed my genitals by three inches. I really should’ve led with that … so I did! Somehow this will be useful background research.
In backwards-vision, divulging my only weakness to strangers was a mistake.
Game of Thrones season six came out on DVD earlier than expected this year, & watching it has been cathartic. The following contains spoilers for this season you’ve probably already seen & maybe some books that haven’t been written yet.
It was nice to see so many tertiary characters I thought they’d forgotten about. (I’m still waiting on Nymeria’s triumphant return.) While watching “The Winds of Winter” where winter finally comes to Westeros (do they need to worry about erratic seasons in Essos as well or is it localized to one continent?), it snowed outside! I’m am very excited for next season’s Clash of Queens, even if it’s lopsided against Cersei.
Naturally Daenerys’s dragons saved the day! Ride that one-trick pony all the way to victory! The only reason not to immediately use dragon babies to solve political conflicts is to prolong her story-line with the illusion of tension. Of course if all of Daenerys’s problems can be easily solved by the application of dragons, maybe they should be presenting her with different ones?
Agents of SHIELD didn’t bother showing up this week, so I can focus on spoiling the DC shows for you. (I will get around to marathonning Luke Cage eventually.) First off, everybody watch Superhero Fight Club 2.0 right now! If you’re not caught up yet on TV, zoom to the end for plenty of NYCC photos! Maybe let the page load a bit longer than usual if you’ve a slow connection.
Happy 50th Birthday, Star Trek! Had I realized this earlier, I would’ve saved my review of “A Piece of the Action” for this week. So instead I’ll be reviewing a vintage episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. They both have ties to Paramount & Playmates so it’s not as random as it could be.
Wingnut & Screwloose will finally be on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles this week! (I just noticed I have both “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” & “TMNT” tags. Which should I be using?) I am way too excited about this! In the meantime, checkout this TMNT short by Jhonen Vasquez.
By the time you read this, 2016 SDCC will be happening. (It might even be over, if you choose not to read it while on queue for Hall H as the headline suggests.) Thank you for accidentally clicking on a link to my blog while you’re at the con! I’m not there myself, so this will mostly be reacting to preview night stuff & furiously updating as news is released on publication day. The more thorough armchair coverage will be up next week (will Marvel continue to troll X-Men fans?), but do stick around for exclusive photos of my cat tormenting a mouse.
It’s that time of year again to vote for the next Star Wars Black fan choice figure! How is Mara Jade the lowest polling of the lot? She’s even doing worse than Dengar, & he’s legitimutantly terrible! You have until this Friday at noon Pacific to make this right.
There’s going to be a King Shark BAF! It even has alternate heads so you can make it from The F-Lash TV show or New 52’s Suicide Squad comic. Jawsome! Too bad the Mattel figures it comes packed with still aren’t up to DC Collectibles’ snuff. The amount of Frank Miller toys is disturbing, but The Reaper looks tempting with its Eiko Ishioka vibe. (How does proto-Phantasm take his mitts off?) Good on them for finally giving Wonder Woman some attention to tie into her movie, even if it means they’re wasting plastic on her mercifully short-lived costume with Azrael vambraces & a suggestively-framing V-loincloth.
Speaking of DCC, its pinup-inspired Bombshells are expanding into the world of toys. I love the deranged look on Bombshells Wonder Woman’s face! Its manic joy is the anti-grimdark. Now this is a Wonder Woman that should be played by Abbi Jacobson!
After years of separation, I finally got my paws on Hi-C Ecto-Cooler again! Sadly, I was not among the bloggers that received a promo for it with bonus slime. The store only had juice boxes instead of the large aluminum cans I prefer. (I did see Ghostbusters-branded Twinkies as well, but I didn’t get them because they were the kind that lacked green filing. Speaking of which, Key Lime TastyKakes don’t have enough.) I miss having Slimer on the label. Since he’s been in the ads for the Ghostbusters reboot that seem to spoil a huge plot development for the secretary, I don’t see why Slimer wouldn’t be back here too for nostalgic corporate synergy. Supposedly he’s absent because Coca-Cola isn’t allowed to use him as a celebrity endorsement anymore?
The juice boxes are genuinely smaller than they were when I was a youngling. After one hearty sip, they’re practically drained. This is a fiendish ploy to make me drink all the cartons in a single sitting then buy more. The included straws are too opaque, so you can’t tell you’re drinking something green through them. As someone who wants to consume all the green things, this is half the fun of Ecto-Cooler. I did confirm that it is still green by pouring it into a glass, but that felt like too much effort on my part when Hi-C could’ve just issued clear straws with it.
The Ecto-Cooler itself tasted … fine? I recall it tasting the same albeit more addictive. I guess from drinking Juicy Juice’s & Langers’ orange-cocktail juices in the intervening years my palate is no longer wowed by Ecto-Cooler. You brought my ambivalence upon yourself by holding out, Coca-Cola! If I can find it in a format that’s not tiny juice boxes, I may give it another go. Hopefully Coca-Cola will keep Ecto-Cooler on shelves for years to come regardless of how the latest reboot performs at the box office. (I now realize that naming the classic cartoon The Real Ghostbusters is as misleading as HBO billing that made-up show as True Detective.) I am interested to see if a new generation that never tasted Ecto-Cooler before embraces it.
Now let’s see if just mentioning the newest Ghostbusters turns my comments section in a dumpster fire!
My first novel, The Dolorous Adventure of Brother Banenose, going out of print was a very depressing, hectic, & confusing time for me. Fortunately that period is coming to an end. Lethe Press will be republishing The Dolorous Adventure of Brother Banenose! Lethe Press specializes in both LGBTQIA fiction & rescuing out of print books from the River Lethe. Its publisher, Steve Berman, personally reached out to me about giving the book a new home.
Lethe Press plans to relaunch the book this fall. (I’m crossing my fingers & toes that this doesn’t become an annual occurrence.) The new edition will feature a revised afterword & a new cover. So there will be some degree of novelty in the new edition if you’ve already got the first. You’ll be able to put them side by side to compare & contrast. So if you missed out on The Dolorous Adventure of Brother Banenose the first time, you’re getting a second chance. If you liked the book so much that you’d like to buy it again, you’re also in luck!
Thank you very much for bringing Brother Banenose, Fairuza, Stephfi, & all the rest aboard, Lethe Press!