Nick Furi’s ODDS and ENDS™- This Week’s Pop Culture News Round-Up!

Nick Furi's Odds & Ends Banner 2013 Final

Film - Here’s a cool little Easter Egg from Captain America The Winter Soldier. Don’t worry– there are ZERO SPOILERS in it. [Sploid]

Television - Giancarlo Volpe, producer of the short-lived Green Lantern The Animated Series, has created a great web comic about his experience with kid focus groups– and the studio grunts that run them. What a fantastic, fun way to expose these absolutely pointless exercises in misinformation and futility. [Giancarlo Volpe Tumblr]

Comics - Remember DC’s Multiversity… Grant Morrison’s supposed end all/be all comic book classic? It finally hits shops later this year. It should also be the best thing ever– especially since the master comic book scribe’s been working on it for EIGHT YEARS. I was excited about this series a few years ago… But DC’s New 52 has drained me of most of my will to read their comics. File this news in the “Too Little, Too Late” folder. [CBR]

Collectibles - Jean Grey was one of my favourite X-Men in the 90s cartoon… So you could imagine how excited I was to see this Jim Lee 90s style Sideshow Collectibles statue. Would love to own one too, but the high price tag for these things strictly limits my ability to purchase them. (I own only one Sideshow statue… It’s Nick Fury, of course.) [Tomopop]

JG Sideshow

Film - Marvel Studios has planned their movie releases all the way through… Wait for it… 2028! This willingness to preplan is why Marvel’s destroying it at the box office– and why their movies are far superior to the products produced by copycats like FOX and Sony. Meanwhile, Warner Bros/DC is quickly becoming the lonely little boy in the corner… Stuck in an endless loop of standalone films and trilogies, which fail to build a cohesive universe for audiences to fall in love with. [Business Insider]

Television - Great News! Jason Aaron’s critically acclaimed DC/Vertigo series Scalped is being developed for TV. Weird News! It’s NOT going to be on HBO or Cinemax– despite being balls-to-the-wall full of Mature Content. What’s up with these Warner Bros divisions passing on some of their BEST in-house projects? It’s almost like every day is April Fools over there. [The Hollywood Reporter]

Comics - Comic Book Awards Season is upon us! The Eisner nominations have been announced– and there’s some stiff competition in several categories. Extremely happy to see such great independent series as Sex Criminals, Saga, Lazarus and Rat Queens get nominations for Best Continuing Series and Best New Comic Book Series. Click the link to check out all the nominees. [Comic Con]

Expensive Comic Art - Holy Shit Snacks! I don’t care if this really is the original Jack Kirby art that eventually became the cover to Fantastic Four #1. There’s no way I would spend $1 MILLION (on eBay of all places!) for any piece of comic book art– especially since it doesn’t actually depict Marvel’s First Family in uniform or likeness. Talk about a sucker being born every minute… [eBay]

Collectibles - If I didn’t know this new Hot Toys Spidey was really Andrew Garfield underneath, I would probably be very interested in picking up this figure. That said, what’s up with all the clothing add-ons? [Hot Toys]

SM Hot Toys

Film - Channing Tatum might play the X-Man called Gambit. Ummm… Hmpft… I have absolutely nothing to add here… Especially since I’ve only seen the actor in 21 Jump Street (which was way better than I expected). I’ll wait for Jupiter Ascending to pass any judgment… If Tatum can pull off an original sci-fi character, maybe he can play a mutant Cajun Thief too. I just wish Matthew McConaughey were twenty years younger. Alright, alright! [/Film]

Television - Come on, TV Producers… Alternate endings just piss me off! Can’t you people make ONE artistic decision, stick to it, and live with the consequences? After fans ripped on the way How I Met Your Mother ended, creators Craig Thomas and Carter Bays took to Twitter to announce there will now be an alternate ending for the full series Blu Ray collection. If this new ending is so good, why wasn’t it used in the first place? Can you say, “This is only bait to buy the Blu Ray!” ten times fast? [CBS]

Comics - If I wasn’t already angry because someone spoiled Game of Thrones for me last Sunday, the following news would still upset me! The fate of Dick Grayson has already been revealed… Way before the comic Forever Evil #7 sees publication. Why the fuck can’t anything stay hidden anymore? Why can’t people employ patience? Why am I surprised DC spilt the beans? Why does having the internet mean we need to know everything before it happens? How many times can I ask questions without providing any answers? [IGN]

Hardy-har-har - This fan site compiles the jokes Bob Dylan makes on stage during live performances. They’re all pretty bad… And right up my alley. [Expecting Rain]

Film - SPOILER! If anyone stays after the credits for Amazing Spider-Man 2, word’s out they’ll get a “surprise” bonus scene featuring X-Men’s Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence). Now, don’t get all pissy and say I’ve ruined some cool artistic moment for you. The movies are not crossing over… As this is strictly a business deal between two studios. Move along– there’s truly nothing creative to see here. Like everything, this quick crossover is all about the moolah. [Variety]

Netflix - The Orange is the New Black Season 2 trailer is here! Haha!

LM ULTRA THIN BOX BREAK

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Weekday Morning Music

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IMJ Pic of the Day

The Purrfect Crime by SHAGThe Purrfect Crime by SHAG

14” X 24” Acrylic on Board available at Corey Helford Gallery

[Xombie Dirge, SHAG]
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IMJ Open Thread

IMJ Open Thread 2014 Goldenrod BrownIMJ SUPERNATURAL S9 OPEN THREAD

Posted in Commentary, Geek Culture, Geek Fun, IMJ Nation™, IMJ Open Thread, Inveterate Media Junkies™, Inveterate Media Junkies™ Open Thread, Opinion, The Intelligent Geek Discussion™ | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Insideman’s Weekly Stack™ – Smallest Ever!

INSIDEMAN'S WEEKLY STACK LOGOWeekly Stack 4.9.14Weekly Stack 4.9.14 Banner

The Weekly Stack™ soon to be detailed in a future Insideman’s Pull List!

I mentioned last week that this week’s stack would be pitiful. 5 Wednesday shipping days (instead of 4) in any given calendar month rarely (if ever) affects the number of Graphic Novels released… But there’s always exceptions to every rule.

I’ve had cheaper weeks but never one smaller in size or weight. More money for fewer books? Who says comic book prices are out of control?

This week’s stack weighs in at 8 Pounds 15 oz
(3.69 Kilograms or 1.28 Stone)
Posted in Commentary, Hardcovers & Graphic Novels, Hardcovers & Trade Paperbacks, Ian MacMillan, IMJ Nation™, IMJ Nation™ Photos, Insideman's Weekly Stack™, New Hardcover & Graphic Novel Releases, Opinion | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

IMJ Film Review with Aimee Kuzenski – Under The Skin

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Scarlett Johansson has been part of a lot of interesting projects lately… With Under the Skin certainly the strangest. Directed by Jonathan Glazer and written by Walter Campbell, the film is a great big abstract, surrealist painting of a movie. It doesn’t explain itself– and it gives you very little with which to figure out the plot.

Under the Skin PosterBased on a book by Michel Faber, Under the Skin is a prime example of an art house challenge– with an incredibly slow pace through the first two-thirds. So much so, I got the distinct impression the director has a serious fetish for Stanley Kubrick’s 2001. It’s filled with long shots of Johansson driving around Scotland picking up random men until she finds someone with no ties and no one waiting for him… Then she lures him back to a house, and devours him.

I haven’t read the book, so lacking any context, here’s my theory: Alien Food Tourism!

Hear me out… The story starts out with a naked Scarlett Johansson stripping the clothes off a dead Scarlet Johansson… Strongly implying our main character is a deadly doppelgänger. The alien also has a mysterious “friend”– a man on a motorcycle who acts as her crime scene cleaner. Whenever the unnamed alien kills, the mystery man shows up to remove anything left behind. True to its art house form, the kills are all represented in a very artsy fashion. Johansson lures the victims into a series of pitch black rooms, undressing as they follow her. Stark naked, the men then slowly sink into the floor until they vanish. Apparently satisfied, Johansson picks up her clothes and walks out.

So what made me think food tourism– rather than serial killer? It’s implied the kills are affecting the alien. After killing a few men, the motorcyclist arrives and takes a long look into her eyes– then leaves without a word. Just before her next kill, Johansson also stops to stare hard into her own eyes.

The alien can’t seem to stem the “ill” effects the killings are having on her psyche. Instead of the lack of empathy she exhibited before (Example: She left a toddler screaming on a beach after his parents drown in the ocean), she starts looking at the humans around her as actual people– instead of vessels of sustenance. She tries to understand them and even attempts to eat their food. She even stays with a human who offers to help her out, developing a nearly normal relationship with the man.

UNDER THE SKIN FILM STILL

I will not spoil the ending. In all honestly, it’s the best part of the film. The pace picks up, and the audience is finally able to emotionally engage with the protagonist– caring about her safety and well-being. The dramatic intensity also ratchets up too… And some seriously disturbing things happen.

The more I sit on Under The Skin, the more I like it. However, there’s no escaping it’s a true trial to watch. The narrative build is long and extremely slow– often confusing and mostly unrewarding. When my male friend admitted to zoning out during Johansson’s nude scenes, I knew I wasn’t the only one who found the film a rough view. So you know, this reaction to nudity is not typical for him– but it does succinctly indicate just how abstract and disconnected this movie can be.

Under The Skin is really hard to rate… But I can tell you it’s extremely polarizing. If you enjoy art house films that are really hard to understand and make you work to enjoy yourself– you’ll probably love it. But if this review sounds like pure torture, I’d recommend waiting for Johansson’s Lucy– an August sci-fi action thriller written and directed by Luc Besson…It appears to be much more intriguing.LM ULTRA THIN BOX BREAK

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Weekday Morning Music

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