Thursday, 13 November 2014
Tuesday, 11 November 2014
|Image copyright DC Comics|
However, the most recent issues – #12 & 13—have seen things dramatically improve. Written by Michael Jelenic and pencilled by Drew Johnson, the two-part “Generations” is a darn sight better than what the last few weeks have thrown at us.
|Image copyright DC Comics|
|Image copyright DC Comics|
Monday, 10 November 2014
Saturday, 8 November 2014
YEERRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! I WANNA RAWWWWWWK!
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Friday, 7 November 2014
Though the series finished up in 1999 and 2001 respectively, they have never really gone away. Xena in particular (and by extension, Lucy Lawless) still has an incredibly dedicated fanbase, who follow Lucy Lawless’ past and current career intently. As for myself? Strangely, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a complete episode of either Hercules or Xena; I’m actually more familiar with Lucy Lawless from her appearances on The Simpsons, Flight of the Conchords and Parks & Recreation.
Nonetheless, I can recognise her massive influence on popular and geek culture alike, and it’s pretty easy to spot a lookalike. I mean, this minifigure even has Lucy Lawless’ distinctive cheekbones!
However, since for legal purposes she’s not actually Xena (or Lucy Lawless), she doesn’t have a chakram or sword; rather, she is carrying a spear and shield, emblazoned with an eagle-esque bird.
The pieces here are nothing new; the spear and shield have both been seen a number of times, and the hair is the same as Intergalactic Girl, though cast in black. One thing to note is that it’s not dissimilar to Wonder Woman’s hair – minus the tiara. So if you want to make it look like WW has just thrown her tiara, now you have a way to do it.
|At the Lupine Book Club, we only use the very best special effects|
I missed this figure on first release, but picked it up on eBay recently. Currently it’s still readily available at a reasonable price, but I’d suggest getting in relatively quick if you’re keen to own her.
Alongside the Battle Goddess (from series 12) and Wonder Woman, this minifigure adds to a small but steadily growing collection of female Greek badasses. Another great addition to the collection, and highly recommended for all Xena fans. Now we just need a "Gabrielle" to go with this "Xena"...and hopefully a "Hercules" too.
Wednesday, 5 November 2014
|Pic from Amazon.com|
Just Can’t Get Enough: Toys, Games and Other Things from the ‘80s that Rocked
When my now-wife and I started dating back in 2009, one of the first things we bonded over was our mutual love of the 1980s. Sensing my fondness for kid's toys and pop culture, she loaned me the subject of today's review, which I instantly loved and have never really returned -- now that we're married, the point seems kind of moot, too.
How do all of these retro relics hold up after so many years? As might be expected, it’s a little bit mixed. There are plenty of toys within that still look cool as an adult. Other items have not fared so well, or were simply terrible at time of release, but people were sucked in by hype. Take Pogo Balls -- much like the authors, I remember just about everyone owning one of the things, but I would be hard pressed to remember seeing anyone actually use one. I suppose it’s a powerful example of how well marketing can work on young impressionable minds.
ot long after the original version of this article was published online, I actually interviewed Jensen Karp via email. My document of this seems to have been lost (though I am looking), but I recall him mentioning there were a number of other chapters planned, but for space and other considerations, they just didn't happen (possibly accounting for the lack of TMNT?). He also mentioned the prospect of a 1990s-based sequel, which didn't seem like it was getting off the ground through no fault of their own -- one was released in 2013, but it seems that it was entirely separate from their involvement. I own that volume too, though, so I may have to look at it on here soon.
Though it seems increasingly unlikely, I’d love to see a companion volume, covering some other '80s fads. With their reverential yet irreverent tone, Jensen Karp and Matthew Robinson did a thoroughly entertaining job of bringing some of these near-forgotten things to life again.
Sunday, 2 November 2014
Each diorama will likely only take you somewhere between 5-10 minutes to build, with the most complex being the Paleontologist’s, due to the dinosaur skeleton. Speaking of which, the dinosaur skeleton is easily my favourite part of this kit. Presumably a juvenile T-Rex, it immediately catches the eye and makes you wonder why Lego hasn’t spent more time creating prehistoric skeletons. As might be expected, it’s a little on the fragile side, but this doesn’t detract from its overall cool factor. A great centrepiece to the set.
But the accompanying microscope is something of an odd inclusion. While it looks good as an additional piece of science equipment, it’s much too tall for the Paleontologist to look into directly. I think it might have been a better choice to feature a diagram board, similar to the Astronomer’s set-up – maybe with a dinosaur evolutionary timeline, or something like that. However, the magnifying glass is an appropriate addition, and actually works as a magnifying glass too.
Though still quite fun, the Astronomer’s diorama is probably the weakest of the three. A proper observatory would be worth a full-scale set in its own right, and cramming it onto a 6 x 6 Lego base means that some of the detail is naturally going to be lost. Still, when viewed on their individual merits, the star chart and the telescope are cool pieces, though I would suggest using the set-up I've photographed here rather than the one depicted on the box.
This set is not particularly easy to find in Australia. It’s a Lego Store exclusive, and we have precisely none of those in Australia. You can order it online, but postage is not cheap unless you’re buying a lot of other stuff too. How did I get it then? Well, my sister was recently travelling around Europe, and she tracked this down for me this in Copenhagen, of all places – unfortunately the London Lego store (which is amazing, I might add) was sold out at the time of her visit.
As a child I dreamed of being an astronomer, a paleontologist and a scientist at different points – so this set pushes all of the right buttons for me. The minifigures are fun, the dioramas are multi-purpose and the overall concept behind the set is fantastic.
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