Saturday, 26 July 2014

TUSK Official Trailer

This is so cool, listening to the podcast as the movie was born and came to fruition is a once in a life time media experience:)


Soundtracks

Ok so I went a little nuts with some soundtrack albums for recent animated features, they weren't expensive so that helps when clicking the "buy" links on Amazon and yes I still prefer physical media:)

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century Rewatch Part 12

Buck's Duel to the Death

S1E21

The planet Katar and a legend of a 500 year old man called the Roshan who is destined to defeat the Traybor and free the world from tyranny, it's fortunate that the fame of Buck has spread so far from Earth because once again he gets dropped right in it after accepting an offer to visit Katar. Of course it's a woman that finally convinces Buck to help although it didn't hurt that the Traybor foolishly sent men to kill Buck and more importantly failed in that task. The Traybor played wonderfully over the top by William Smith had spent time on the planet Voltron and had circuitry embedded under his skin which allowed him to store and manipulate electrical energy and then discharge at a will, mostly it had to be said in combat which made him pretty much unstoppable since modern worlds don't seem to be familiar with electricity, no idea what they use since that was never explored, cheap dodge but I guess it worked ok :) Of course Buck has his own knowledge and resources back on Earth and with the insight gleamed he uses Twiki as an insulator and capacitor and fights the Traybor eventually prevailing and all is once again right with the world.

An average episode which may be given an extra point because of how William filled the screen with his campy menace and another point for the gratuitous shots of the ladies climbing down the ladders in their tight outfits, seriously one woman just to make the point but 4 or 5 was probably overkill:)
It's Good to be King

Flight of the War Witch, Part 1 & 2

S1 Finale

Well here we are at the season 1 finale and they do a two parter, clever idea but you would have thought it would have straddled the seasons as a cliffhanger but given how different the second season was you wonder if they thought the show wasn't coming back and well blew their wad all in one go:)
Anyhow whatever the reason the presented feature length story worked very well indeed, a message from another universe with instructions for getting there using the "Vortex" aka Black Hole and with the intent to not only bring in the military forces of the Earth but also the more violent yet predictable Draconian forces under the command of Princess Ardala.
It says a lot about tv at the time that it's taken this long for both Wilma and Dr Huer to get a strong emotional scene with Buck where both can express their feeling for the guy, Tim and Erin shine but unfortunately Gil is pretty wooden throughout, not sure if he was directed in that manner since we know he can do better but the scenes lost a little for his lack of empathy. There were some excellent (for the time) visual/optical effects for the wormhole and nice to see they tried to make this universe look different with a more varied star field and the trapped aliens around the planet of Pendar was a nice touch if never really explored. As you would expect neither the Earth Directorate nor the Draconians are happy about being manipulated but they are kinda stuck with no way back without the help of the natives. Once again credit to the location set which would be a backlot but it looked pretty good and to me it reminded me of the studio set used for the Trek episode Shore Leave and then add the very Organian approach to the more advanced locals and Trek was fairly screaming at me in a very good way:) While we are looking at contemporary shows who else would be playing the War Witch Zarina but the one and only Julie Newmar  (Catwoman and Eleen (TOS) ).
Julie Newmar

Council taking Corporeal Form
There is no surprise that Buck agrees to help nor that Ardala stabs them in the back nor that the War Witch doesn't trust anyone and is quite happy to betray Ardala but her plans are working and with the imminent attack on Pendar after the successful breach of it's shield why would she take on new allies? Of course she is taken by Buck (what woman isn't) but even though he seems to be softening towards Ardala he isn't playing ball with Zarina and there are some very good lines including "To Live One Must Be Willing To Die" which comes as a surprise from the shows writers which once again makes you wonder if they realised this episode was make or break for ongoing employment. 
As Pendar gets close to falling from the assault beyond their atmosphere by the 73,000 troops and ships carried by the War Witch's ship the infiltration by Buck which fell apart after Ardala betrayed him gets back on track with the rescue of the previously captured Kodus (Trek again?) and when returned to Pendar begins to fix the shield which gives Buck the chance to set the trap for the War Witch relying on her own anger and blindness in seeing the obvious when her goal was so close.
You know you can't really trust her!
Laughed myself silly when Ardala on her hands and knees and in a tight outfit was crawling around a cargo bay and uttered "This is so degrading" amen sister both for the character and actress, again either the writers going to town or maybe a classic adlib?  I guess the men saving the day was always going to be the case especially in this era of television and the market but at least the women were contributing even if at times they were classic damsels in distress but with the destruction of the War Witch the two enemies keep their guns holstered at least until returning to their own universe.

The Flight of the War Witch is a pretty good title and overall the episode is a very fitting conclusion to the first season of Buck Rogers, good special effects and some new ship models but looking back we see this is the farewell for Ardala, Kane and Huer who do not return for the second season.
So the second season, don't think I'll be watching it anytime soon, recall not being that impressed first time around but it's sitting on the shelf so you never know.




Sunday, 6 July 2014

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century Rewatch Part 11

A Dream of Jennifer

S1E19

While out on a shopping trip with Twiki Buck spots a familiar face from his past but that can not be, after all that was 500 years ago. He spots her again at a transit station and suspiciously gets her information from the check in desk and she is identified as Lela Markeson on route to City by the Sea which used to be New Orleans. It turns out that this Lela had being surgically altered to look like Buck's girl friend Jennifer as part of an overly complex plot to derail arms and supply shipments to the independent world Vega V by the Earth directorate. The Koven who are literally very red skinned have put a lot of effort into thwarting the efforts of the directorate but it's all for nought thanks to a few surprises onboard the supply freighter and of course Buck and Wilma doing their thing.
Anne Lockhart as Lela / Jennifer
So Buck is gathering supplies to build a hot tub, not quite sure how the human race lost interest in such things even after a nuclear war but hey it got the plot moving and set up the market scene with a lot of extras and of course the first look at Lela played by the gorgeous Anne Lockhart. In the flash back we even get a little side boob, it says a lot that despite the times that was quite surprising on the show and the notion that Buck was in a serious relationship prior to his mission back in the day. Later he again spotted the woman who looked like his Jennifer at a space port and hey I know that guy, yes Dennis Haysbert (The Unit, 24) is playing a guard and then over the public address system we hear "Captain Christopher Pike", I pissed myself laughing:)

The main plot I guess was the efforts of the Koven led by Commander Reeve (Paul Koslo) to prevent the Earth from supplying the planet Vega V with supplies and munitions to aid in their defence but the whole convoluted plot of altering a woman to look like Buck's long lost love and to then use her to force him to destroy the supply freighter seems way over the top. They said Buck had a photo of Jennifer and they used that to create the copy complete with voice and I guess all those little things which I'm not quite sure a 2D photo would be capable of showing. I felt a little let down that Buck rejected the flirting from the alien Nola, if nothing else wouldn't we all be curious if she was red all over but then again Lela was rocking the ridiculously tight blue spandex so it's all good apart from the end which wasn't but hey a last minute joke about Jaws so the show finished on a happy note.

Overall a pretty good episode mind you the bad guys plans were a little extreme but there were laughs and everyone looked good even when the alien of the week are guys painted a garish red.

Space Rockers

S1E20

The galaxies most popular music is being used to subvert the young folk of thousands of worlds leading to rioting and civil unrest and Buck is sent to investigate because after all he was around when music was destroying civilisation back in the 20th century. The band Andromeda perform from a former military space station controlled by Lars Mangros (Jerry Orbach) and he splices a harmonic code into the music which effects the listeners, his goal to sew chaos and then extort power from the various worlds in turmoil.
Lars Mangros
Andromeda
This really wasn't a good episode after all the very idea of a music genre corrupting the young while still the mindset of some more fringe elements in society really belongs in a bygone age, I guess the idea of manipulating the music to cause a specific effect is scifi and that has some credibility but for half the episode that wasn't a known element. I didn't quite understand why the Earth directorate has no regulatory control over the former space station, it was in freaking orbit and even when it was known to be the source of a galaxy wind terrorist attack then sod the rules nuke it! It was also hilarious how old the youth of the Earth were, not exactly teenagers looking for direction and one thing we've seen is that the human society is pretty stable and we humans are not everywhere so why would this music effect the whole galaxy? Lets not get into how this concert was being transmitted galaxy wide or why Lars would even consider that one world wouldn't take very pro-active action to prevent their society.

You know the worst thing, the music wasn't that bad:)



Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Star Trek TNG XXX Commentary

I own the DVD release of the Star Trek TNG XXX parody movie, yes I actually paid for some porn in this day and age, it's a bizarre concept I know assuming you are not judging the very existence of adult material in the first place:) Anyhow this movie offers a Star Trek next generation story dealing with Tasha Yar and the Enterprise along with the usual crew, the plot itself stands up to the average of what TNG offered and while obviously production levels are not going to be met if you can judge it as a well financed fan film then we can proceed:)

If you are familiar with The Gatecast podcast this is very much of the same style, a running commentary spliced into the soundtrack with observations and thoughts, it may not be that entertaining but it something I just fancied doing:)
Opening Credits

She's put on a few pounds
Riker, Picard and Troi
Satisfaction or Expectation?
India Summer & April O'Neil
Giles Aston as Picard
Tyler Knight as Geordi
Bobbi Starr as Leah Brahms and some familiar looking rocks
Pesky Romulans

Beverly and Jean-Luc getting busy
Lee Bang as Worf with Ro
Dana DeArmond rocking it as Ro Laren

Star Trek: The Next Generation - A XXX Parody
IMDB
Official Site