Store Update 24/02/14

It’s been a slower week for the store in terms of additions, what with work and general tiredness kicking in BUT, this week may not have the quantity (bearing in mind a lot of the last update was done whilst the store was offline and no customers visiting etc.) but I think we sure as hell have the quality. I mean, within 30 minutes of the Daryl Dixon figure listed below hitting the store for pre-order, we had 2 orders placed. Time has also been spent on the Redbubble store  – 2 new designs added!

We are now on LinkedIn & Pinterest – expanding our social profile.

So, what’s new on the store then?  Take a gander below:

Remember to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more regular updates and other news!

Lego Movie Review

I wanna start this review by saying:

EVERYTHING IS AWESOME

[youtube=http://youtu.be/t6lHm-stXdM]

This movie is jam packed with fun.  Non Lego fans can get easily immersed in this movie based on the open hilarity and the fantastic voice acting from folks such as Morgan Freeman, Chris Pratt, Will Arnet, Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson and so on.

Lego fans can enjoy the references involving the part numbers appearing on screen like Matrix-style code and some of the real-life creations you can own now!

The humour is diverse – something for adults that just go straight over the kids’ heads and the kids have their own fun at the daft antics before them.  This is one of the funniest, well made and best movies I have ever seen.  The movie has depths you wouldn’t expect from a CG movie based on ‘kids’ toys’.

The voice acting is great and the characters own the screen.  Emmet, an average guy just living his life unwittingly embarks on a journey of self-discovery and heroism.  The subtle and not so subtle references to the Lego universe are great – he works in construction so there are large manuals held overhead depicting where the blocks go so Emmet and his colleagues can complete their work.

Batman is fantastic (lacks the screen time I would have liked) and is nothing like Batman (I mean, this one wrote and composed a song to play in the Batmobile…not very Dark Knight-like!) but he rocks the screen every time you see him.

There are ‘cameos’ from other Lego items such as Chewbacca, Han Solo, Lando Calrisia and even Duplo!

The plot follows Emmet, working as a regular guy in a world controlled by President Business, who is also known as the evil Lord Business voiced by Will Ferrell).  Lord Business doesn’t like change or imagination.  He has a plan to use the ‘Kragle’ to stop change for good.  In Lord Business’ chamber, he has many items that he either can’t pronounce or makes them sound posher than they are – the way he says nail polish remover is hilarious.  The ‘Kragle’ is basically ‘Krazy Glue’ with some letters missing.

Aided by Liam Neeson’s Bad Cop (who is also good cop when his face rotates), they are trying to hunt down and capture all ‘Master Builders’ to remove the radical element of change.  Bad Cop has a hard time with chairs, smashing them all over the screen at any given opportunity which is face-achingly funny alone!

Emmet’s journey culminates when he has to put the lid back on the glue.  Doesn’t sound deep orcomplex but that’s what makes this great.  In the world of people who are generally only an inch or two tall, this is a huge task to undertake spanning multiple universes within the Lego galaxy.

Now, the spoilery bit.  Skip the next bit if you don’t wanna know!

[su_spoiler title=”Spoiler!” style=”fancy”]The Lego world is a super imaginative reflection of what’s happening in, what is technically, our world.  Lord Business is based upon the real world character played by Will Ferrell – he owns the Lego set and his son is the one always making changes and “ruining it all”.  The little boy is the one driving Emmet and co to thwart his father’s idealistic views upon this Lego goodness. This makes sense as to how real world items get into the Lego realms and why, at times, it’s like the movie is being depicted from two different viewpoints – the rigid, by the book ideals of the father and the imaginative, child-like adventures of the son. /su_spoiler]

On the whole, this movie is a fantastic feat mixing adult and childish elements together to make a wholesome family movie.

Verdict: [usr 5]

 

 

Something To LATCH On To

We posted previously about supporting charities and a theme seems to be developing whereby we’re plugging charities that focus on children.  As a parent myself, it seems only natural – their well-being and quality of life should come before ours.  Any good parent would donate their heart and sacrifice their own life to ensure their child can live on and make a life of their own.  No parent should survive their children.

Cancer and blood disease are something I’ve mainly read about, no one close to myself has suffered from either disease.  I know people who have had it affect their lives in terms of friends and family of theirs that have suffered and in some cases, passed away as a result.

LATCH is a charity based in Wales, helping children and their families through the tumultuous times that the news of cancer/leukaemia (and a variety of other diseases) can cause.  Here’s a snippet of the history of LATCH:

LATCH was formed in 1982 by a group of families and friends who recognised that the children diagnosed with cancer or leukaemia and their families not only needed medical support, but also social and welfare support to ease the huge financial and emotional burden placed on families with a child on treatment. At that time, the Children’s Oncology Unit was based in Llandough Hospital.

We will be supporting Alun, whose eldest daughter was diagnosed with Aplastic Anaemia in April 2013.  Alun will be embarking on a remarkable journey to raise money for LATCH.  Alun will be trekking Mount Kilimanjaro (no mean feat) and he will commence training very soon to undertake this huge endeavour as a way of saying thanks for the support his daughter and family received from LATCH.

Please like the Facebook page and donate on the JustGiving page.

Store Update 17/02/14

The store has had a few tweaks here and there along with some new items (and some not so new items) being listed.

Firstly, we have added a reviews section to the products so buyers can leave feedback regarding their awesome purchases.

The way URLs are handled have been tweaked to allow sharing to Facebook etc. to flow without missing product information and images of the actual items.

A pre-owned section has been added whereby some of my unwanted/unused items will be listed.  The option to allow users to have a means to upload and sell their items is an idea that may take shape down the line.

A ‘What’s New‘ link has been added to the top menu to allow swift access to the sites recently added items.

A ‘COMING SOON‘ link has also been added to allow pre-orders and a little taste of what’s to come.

A link to our Redbubble store has also been added  for our T-Shirt designs etc.

A tweak most probably won’t notice is the ‘Featured Items’ section on the store homepage.  It has been set to randomise the items as opposed to the static display previously.  This way, every time you visit, you’ll have a different set of items to cast your gaze upon rather than becoming complacent to the same old line-up!

So, what new items have we got?

Well…feast your eyes on these:

  1. Alien Reaction Figure – Alien “Big Chap”
  2. Alien Reaction Figure – Ash
  3. Alien Reaction Figure – Dallas
  4. Alien Reaction Figure – Kane
  5. Alien Reaction Figure – Ripley
  1. Big Bang Theory – Howard (Star Trek)
  2. Big Bang Theory – Leonard (Star Trek)
  3. Big Bang Theory – Raj (Star Trek)
  4. Big Bang Theory – Sheldon (Star Trek)

 

PRE-OWNED

 

Phew, that was pretty exhausting putting this list together adding all the hyperlinks etc!

So, hopefully you will enjoy the feast laid before you – stock is on order but as some of the descriptions on the product pages state – some are special items meaning that we order them upon request due to the cost/niche market for them.

The prices have been kept as low as possible – cheaper and in some cases a steal compared to other sites/sellers.  The way we see it – cheaper prices = more sales as opposed to jacking up the mark-up to make up the numbers from the select few.

The aim is to do a weekly round up of news and updates to keep things nice and tidy and easy to notice changes in case you missed them.

Hit us up in the comments with any feedback/requests/suggestions.

Taste our awesome.

The Never-ending Store(y)

Hello.

Is it these you’re looking for?

The store has officially opened – our supplier has approved us and we have a shipment on pre-order for some previously unreleased Alien Reaction figures and Harley Quinn (with mallet) FunkoPop! Vinyls.

There’s still a lot to be done but we are taking orders and will fulfil any requests as soon as possible.  The more expensive items, and lesser mainstream ones such as the Killing Joke Joker statue will be ordered at request to minimise any stock/payment issues.

There is a lot more cool stuff to come, slow process getting it all listed but the blog, Twitter, Google+ and Facebook will be updated regularly.  Keep coming back – the homepage will keep you up to speed about the new items.

I aim to try and new a large weekly update and will announce new additions here on the blog.

UIf you have any requests or ideas for items you want but have struggled to source them or the prices just seem too steep (bearing in mind, the majority of our items can be listed for far less than any other site) then let us know and we’ll do our best to try and locate them and get you the best price possible.

We hope you enjoy.  I’m sure you’ll love the taste of our awesome.

Charity Begins At The Homepage

Yesterday, we added a small ad to link up to The Wayne Foundation – a fantastic cause fighting the war on modern day slavery.

There are a number of other organisations across the globe to fight the same war in their respective countries.

One of our main mission goals is to support others.  Initially that meant giving artists and other creative talents an avenue of getting their name out there, either by working on products for us or just giving them a shout out to rally support.

This then manifested into the biggest support network we are all familiar with as we see it every day on TV ads, online ads, on the street and in the foyers of shops and other businesses.  Charity.

There are so many out there and it’s hard to pick the ‘right one’ sometimes.  I feel guilty because I can’t donate or sponsor certain causes – I do when I can but I can’t afford it and I only give to what I have a heartfelt interest in.  I’ve donated to cancer research and so on but, so far, cancer has not really impacted my life so therefore I don’t have it in the forefront of my mind.

I give money for Children In Need, mainly because I have kids myself and can’t imagine the likes of them suffering so feel guilted into giving – not a noble feeling for a noble cause.

The only charity I give to that has more of a purpose in my eyes (because I have seen the impacts as both my grandparents suffered from it towards the end) is Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Charities are a fantastic way of raising awareness and much needed funds to further the cause and advance the technologies where applicable.  But, because I only have a finite amount of money, I can only give so much so I go for the things that have touched my life.  Cancer may very well rear its ugly head later in my life in some shape or form and at that point I may become more of a giver to the cause.

There is no right and wrong for giving or not giving.  We shouldn’t feel pressured into giving but at the same time we should feel inclined to give something.  Is it what makes us good people?  No, not really.  The worst criminals could very well give huge sums of money but it doesn’t mean you are a good person.  It may mean there’s still humanity within you but it’s not the same.  Just as not giving anything doesn’t make you a bad person, but your empathy towards the human condition is either somewhat lacking, displaced, ignored or non existent.

Sometimes it just feels good to do something good.  And sometimes that means doing more than just giving money.  Such as taking part in an event (Race For Life for example), organising a fundraiser, raffles, competitions or just dressing up as your favourite character or hero.

If you, or anyone you know, will be doing any sort of charity work or fundraising, feel free to hit us up on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr or even here on the blog and we will plug you, put up an advert and hopefully even give away some prizes or rewards on your behalf.

The world isn’t a good place, but we can make it better.

REVIEW: Robocop (2014)

A thought has been troubling me…This is the second time an Alex Murphy has been blown apart and reassembled on film, and not once do either of them ask, ‘What happened to my dick!?’  Anyway…First thing’s first, this is not the future of law enforcement…It certainly isn’t a crime though, far from it.  This largely unwanted remake is quite a different beast to its 80’s predecessor,  gone is the sharp 80’s corporate excess satire,  in with the political, foreign policy,  patriotism and the morals of science.  It’s pretty compelling too, it’s well acted (the new boy does good), the action hammers home effectively, although the hardcore gory violence is gone, it’s certainly not as tame as many feared (a scene showing what’s left of Murphy’s innards might even be considered a bit disturbing).  Far from the CGI videogame the trailer appeared to show.  This mostly comes across as practical, real bullets and stunts…mostly.  The bike is awesome, feeling like a tribute to Street Hawk as much as anything.

The big controversy about the suit?  Well…While not a patch on Rob Bottin’s original,  which still looks astounding today,  isn’t half bad.   The decision to go ‘tactical black’ is nowhere near the problem everyone expected…no spoilers,  watch it…The human hand issue however?  The director has explained it in interviews,  but the film explains nothing.  A strange and quite annoying decision.  Unfortunately, the script lets it down in the final third.  Certain characters’ morals become fuzzy, certain plot threads are settled in sudden and unspectacular fashion and a major major plot line is forgotten and shoved under the carpet, leaving a real sense of WTF…?

The scenes with Samuel L Jackson are a mixed bag in my opinion, clearly a nod to the satirical news sections in the original, and a swipe at certain big US current affairs personalities, largely feels out of place in this new take.  Jackson is clearly enjoying himself;  he hams it up spectacularly, but apart from an excellent segment showing live footage from Iran, it feels a bit unnecessary.

As a complete package, though, it’s far far better than I thought it would be, if only the money men had been brave enough to create a new franchise,  as this will always be compared to the original, a stone wall 5 star classic,  a fight it was never going to win.  Mechanicopper?   Popobot?  Autofuzz? Anything but Robocop…

Sent by the mighty bear of truth.

[usr 3.75]

 

 

The Secret Stash

The store has had a lot of tweaks as well as items being added to test functionality and to build the catalogue up in anticipation of our supplier approving us. It’s in maintenance mode now so there is no public access.

If you’ve been watching Facebook and/or Twitter you’ll have noticed the little teasers I’ve been giving around some cool items as well as being able to spot our planned loyalty rewards scheme and some huge savings on some of the coolest items around compared to other sites.

I will continue to add to it and further tidbits are more than likely going to be shared via social media.

We should hopefully know about our supplier’s decision next week.

Until then, keep tasting our awesome!

You Want A Podcast? I Got More Than Just SModcast (Only Just)

I love podcasts.  I love a SModcast podcast.  But I listen to more than just SModco podcasts.  Here, I will give you my top rated podcasts.  It’s a tough call to rank some of them because they are great so think of it more of a collection of best podcasts rather than a chart.

As I said in a previous post, I listen to a lot of SMod affiliated podcasts – it’s how I started out and then I discovered more and more.  Some I liked, some I loved…some I got bored of.  Here’s what makes my list (basically any I currently listen to, to be fair!)

smodcast[1]

 

The big daddy of my listening list.  SModcast is, as you can see above (for the most part) Kevin Smith & Scott Mosier shooting the shit.  From reading news articles of outrageous and hilarious (and sometimes terrifying) stories to the fact some of the latter then become inspiration and Kev then writes a script and shoots a movie based on it (Tusk).  We hear tales of the dynamic duo and their origin stories when they met in film school, shot Clerks, attended the Sundance Film Festival, Scott’s vasectomy and a SMorgy of other stories.  Scott is absent for a chunk while he was busy writing for Ultimate Spider-man.  In his absence, we hear Kev on his own, putting the world to rights with his mum (Grace) and a bukkake of guests such as Russell Brand, Gerard & Mikey Way, Mick Foley and a shed load more.

This is my favourite and it has gotten me through many a long drive from Wales up to Scotland to see my family and back again.  Foul, potty-mouthed and unashamed, this podcast is a must.  Even for those unfamiliar or not a huge fan of Smiddy, this is highly entertaining stuff!

 

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To be fair, I was torn as to whether to have this sit alongside SModcast or not but seeing as SModcast was my first and Babble-On was introduced to me later, I have set it to this order.  However, this isn’t to say this podcast isn’t amazing.  Because it is.  With the lack of political correctness, Ralph Garman’s plethora of voices, Kevin’s baked and dumbed down character and audience interaction and participation, this show is non-stop hilarity.  Ralph’s hatred of Chelsea Handler and many other talentless c***s.  I went back and listened from episode one right up to the point I’m up to date with it – hearing it evolve has been great.  Many of the segments were amateur sounding and it took a while to take shape – still great but if you compare then to now you can see a huge difference!  The fans have contributed jingles and so on to give the show a nice, fun twist as each segment begins and the fan contributions such as “Shit That Should Not Be” and “Exquisite Acting”pile on the funny despite the fact we can’t see what’s going on!  And, the big (and I mean ginormous) finale…Liam Neeson’s Cock.  This is a Definite listen.  Especially if you want your lady to let you abuse her leather cheerio.

 

tesd[1]

 

TESD…By far the best podcast on the SModcast network that doesn’t feature Mr Smith.  Well, with the exception of a visit or two in the early days.  This pod has gone from strength to strength as we observe the ups and downs of Bry and the changes within Walt who wasn’t keen on the pod and took offense at a lot of feedback in the past.  This was the podcast that kick started Comic Book Men (now in its third season and airs straight after The Walking Dead on AMC).  Some of my favourite episodes are the ones featuring Walt’s games such as One, True, Three ( a kinda call my bluff style game).  With ad-hoc guests like Rob Bruce, Git ’em  and walk-in fans that have travelled to meet the Comic Book Men themselves, it’s constant fun and enlightening at the same time.

 

Fat-Man-on-Batman[1]

 

I was severely torn here because this combines 2 or more of my favourite things ever.  Fatman on Batman has been huge in my eyes in terms of the guests that Kev has had (Grant Morrison, Neal Adams, Paul Dini and many more).  Hearing some of the inspiration behind the stories and characters as well as the off-topic conversations.  Grant Morrison is by far my favourite to date.  Not just because he’s a fellow Scot.  If you love Batman, Kevin Smith or both then this is a definite must listen.  As ever, like all Kev’s podcasts (well, technically all SModco podcasts) there is plenty filth and foul language so this is NSFW!)

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Edumacation as one of the newest additions to the Smodcast Network.  Kev gets baked (as usual) while Andy separates myth and fact.  Another hilarious podcast but it has smarts!  Even I have learned things from this – interesting and funny – a rare combo, especially these days.  As I write this, it is 24 episodes in (still got to listen to that one) but each week it never fails to deliver.  They’re also doing a live show soon – be interesting to see if it becomes a live show like a lot of Kev’s other ones…)

 

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The Nerdist podcast is one I later discovered – I found it hard to break into to start with.  It felt like there were too many inside jokes and I was trying to mingle with a group of really good friends as a newcomer and felt kinda left out but I started to listen to episodes featuring people I was interested in such as Mick Foley, Robert Kirkman, Kevin Smith and so on.  After that I went to mop up the ones I hadn’t listened to.  I’ve practically caught up but with work and other stuff I kinda always have 4 or 5 episodes in my list to catch up on.  The hostful episodes are a great, relaxed laugh but the named guests like celebs and so on are a great way to find out more about people I maybe wasn’t bothered with or never really knew.  I think the main reason I found it hard to get into Nerdist to start with was the fact there were no introductions and you’re just there like you’ve walked into a conversation and feel awkward and don’t know whether to stay or stand there politely waiting to be noticed.  It was mainly when the guests were people I’d never heard of or was terribly familiar with so lacked the context of what was about to take place in the podcast.

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You may be thinking “Wow!  This isn’t affiliated with Kevin Smith!”  You’d be correct.  Kinda.  He’s appeared on this show a few times and Ralph Garman provides the showbiz news and all things movie related.  This is hilarious (and clean!)  The jingles crack me up and they phone celebrities and people involved in some of the news stories they cover (impersonators, of course).  Some of my faves are Susan Boyle, Harrison Ford, the Wendy’s blunt incident and the competitions featuring Ralph’s superhero quiz (just like on TV, you get infuriated at the fact people don’t know the answers).  A diverse range of guests, funny jungles and comical sound effects make this a must that is probably the only one I listen to that’s safe for work!

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Not to be confused with Chris Hardwick’s (The Nerdist) TV show, The Talking Dead (on AMC), this podcast features Chris (not Hardwick) & Jason discussing the latest news, episodes and fan views and feedback around the TV show and their podcast.  Very light-hearted, relatively safe for work (can’t remember if they’ve ever sworn – no F Bombs I’m sure!)  This is a very enjoyable podcast for Walking Dead fans.  They’re 142 episodes in now (got the latest one still to listen to).  This podcast, as well as TWD itself, has introduced me to some new music as they play a song during their break before a sponsorship ad.

So, there we go.  I listen to a lot more than just this lot but these are my top picks.  In terms of geekiness and nerdiness, these fit the bill in some shape or form.  If you already listen to them then you’re awesome.  If you don’t, try becoming more awesome.

In the meantime, keep tasting our awesome.

Justice League: War – The Review

I sat up watching Justice League: War last night in the dark.  My notes may not make much sense as I convert them into this review but I want to start off by saying there may be spoilers for you ahead but I’m going to give more of a general overview rather than a step by step breakdown of the entire movie.

A lot of what transpires in the movie is well known via various comic arcs and animated episodes of the Justice League.  Based on Justice League: Origin by Geoff Johns, Jim Lee and Scott Williams to kick of their debut on the New 52 Justice League arc, the movie gives us a quick introduction to Green Lantern, Batman, Flash, Wonder Woman, Superman, Cyborg and Shazam as well as bringing Darkseid into the fray with his converted minions to terraform earth and consume it as he has multiple other planets and universes.

So, we start off with reports of the ‘Batman’ with terrified victims being snatched by a bat-like creature.  Batman is clearly still a being of myth and legend, still hunted by the GCPD based on reports of the elusive crime fighter that people would rather deny the existence of.  It soon turns out that this is not Batman but a creature similar to a lizard but equipped with alien technology and armour as well as the ability to breathe fire.

Green Lantern (Hal Jordan) swoops in after the kidnapper swipes his latest victim and soon discovers that this is a formidable foe.  After a beautifully animated fight sequence with complimentary explosions, Batman arrives to assist.  This is HIS city, after all.

We encounter our first of many comical comments from Green Lantern when he says, “Batman?  You’re REAL?!”  As the movie progresses, Green Lantern and Batman have a few sarcastic and comical exchanges.  It nails the character of Hal Jordan from the comics and the dry, matter-of-factly Bruce Wayne.

Another fantastic sequence ensues when Batman attaches his grapple-hook to what we later find out to be a Parademon.  Just as he takes off he states “This is my city”  To which Green Lantern responds “This entire space sector is mine”.  It [Parademon] flies through Gotham with Batman in tow, swooping by buildings and other objects that would make you hurl with fear of dying if you came into contact with them.

Shortly after, the creature escapes into the sewer system.  As they pursue, another pleasant exchange takes place between the two.  “I’m a Green Lantern, I can do anything.”  “Except shut up, apparently,” Batman responds.  Green Lantern then probes Batman in the familiar fashion of the comics by questioning what his abilities and powers are.  My favourite part of this scene is where Green Lantern asks, “Do you fly?”  And Batman responds with, “In a plane.”  It’s a very short line but the humour rings through for those die hard fans of DC comics – every incarnation of the meeting of the two has an element of disbelief and sarcasm when it comes to the fact that this guy, Bruce Wayne, is just a guy in a bat suit.

I’m not going to give a running commentary on the movie, you’ll see and hear everything I describe if you watch it yourself – that was just a taste of the first few minutes of the movie opening and sums up the overall tone. Later we get introduced to Wonder Woman in the company of Steve Trevor, about to introduce Diana to the President of the United States when the Parademons attack the White House.

The way all of the remaining members of the reluctant ‘team’ and ‘super friends’ are introduced is great, Cyborg’s creation by far one of my favourite parts of the movie.  Darkseid’s eventual arrival and the way he swats Superman and the others out of the air and breaks Green Lantern’s arm using less energy than a halogen heater on it’s lowest setting spells impending doom for Gotham, Metropolis and the rest of the world.

Through problem solving and teamwork, Darkseid is defeated and teleported back to his homeworld.  The heroes who were hated and feared previously are now celebrated as champions of Earth.  Their little remarks and conversations as the President addresses the public shows how much they do not want to work together and they want to go their separate ways, but we all know that Earth will be under attack again and again and this unlikely bunch will need to band together to save us all.  Meet the Super Seven!  Wait…that name sucks.

So…how does this movie fare?

Well, the story is fantastic.  Most DC fans already know it but it’s great to see it in a feature length film with what animation has to offer today.  The animation is amazing and fluid and it makes it feel like we’re watching a comic book unfold in motion on our screens.  The voice acting takes a little while to get used to when your Batman is Kevin Conroy but once you get past the voice talents that are missing you can enjoy the ones that are actually there.  My reaction to the voices was similar to when I watched Batman: The Dark Knight Returns – I couldn’t embrace Bruce Wayne/Batman and Commissioner Gordon’s voices but after a few viewings I got over it.

The movie is done in a way that, regardless of your knowledge of the characters and the DC universe, everyone can enjoy it.  Fanboys may see some things they haven’t seen before and newcomers can just enjoy the ride.  DC know what they’re doing and, by tying this release as well as some of their other titles in with the New 52 series, it may gain a new readership rather than potential readers being put off by wondering where to start in the massive back catalogue of previous titles.

So, here’s my breakdown via the gift of stars:

[usrlist “Movie:4.5” “Animation:5” “Story:5” “VoiceActing:4”]