June 21, 2010

Ick.

There is a very odd infestation ongoing in our area.

Frankly I have never seen this happen before, and I'm surprised I'm actually scared shitless (if not grossed out) by these things. Currently one of the worst invasive species ("pests" in layman's terms) in the world, it is not the cockroach, it is not the sewer rat, heck, it's not even those wacky janitor fish that all the local government units were buzzing about a few years back.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the East African Land Snail.

East African Land Snail, baby I think
Click on, my friends, as the invasion infestation progresses in all its terrifying glory!

May 31, 2010

Russians are weird.

(via TV Tropes and my buddy Abdul)

No, no, don't worry. This isn't a blatant rip-off of a certain gamer webcomic print collection cover at all.



Anyway, this isn't me expanding into a new culturally insensitive blogger niche. This is just me paying homage to the universal power of humor: The Russian Edition!

May 12, 2010

Geeks + Conquest = Epic Hilarity Ensues?

The Nostalgia Critic in full M. Bison regalia... and no, I'm not kidding.
... At least that's what I (and surely a whole medium-sized municipality's worth of Interwebz-going sheeple nerds) will be aching to find out next week when the Nostalgia Critic and the other faithful, genre-savvy citizens of ThatGuyWithTheGlasses.com attempt a hostile takeover of the real-life micronation of Molossia.

It's over!

The automated polls are finally over!

Election 2010, indelible inkI voted.

And it's a good thing too. Can you imagine what a logistical nightmare finding a decent enough contingency plan for a failed nationwide election would have been?

Then again...

May 10, 2010

Cue the Swiss Family Robinson dreams again.

(via possibly the most aptly-titled io9 post yet)

Why yes, I am jealous.

Star Wars kiddie command tower, io9Rebel-sabotaged Death Star sold separately.


Seriously, what is it with kid-at-heart geeks and their obsessive desire to live in enclosed, elevated spaces?


Did you guys know that there's an entire freakin' cottage industry built on ridiculously awesome treehouses?

Seattle-designed treehouse, from Web Urbanist
Alas, not everybody can be Tarzan. (Or can we?!)

And then there are the behemoths of treehouse royalty like these Blueforest designs, which seem to trump even regular houses in prettiness full-on aesthetic functionality.


Oh well. At least I can kind of live this dream vicariously through my toys.

She-Hulk and the Cheapo Blocks, by axilog14Of course, even this can go horribly, hilariously overboard.

May 8, 2010

OK Go: Beyond Treadmills!

OK Go, official photo (bio)
If you have heard of the band OK Go, then surely you've heard of their by-now iconic music video for "Here It Goes Again".

This post is not about that video.

Colors are weird.

So a couple of weeks ago I took this color survey Randall Munroe put up on his popular webcomic xkcd. The survey was fun, although I was probably around fifty colors before I started seeing the room in spinning technicolor throwup. In short, it was a really fun survey.

A while ago I discovered he had just put the results up on his blog blag.

The results were a mix of the fascinating and the amusing (as should be expected of the likes of Comrade Munroe), with a couple of neat tangents to screen monitor resolutions and color-blindness thrown in. I recommend reading that blog blag in full, it's about as informative as your average Irregular Webcomic! annotation.
Actual color names, xkcd color surveyAnd that's not even half of it. Literally.

I was a bit stupefied to see actual results like "ecru" or "burnt umber" in this survey. I was also disappointed that girls cannot properly distinguish the color salmon and that indigo did not make more of a showing. Indigo IS a full-fledged member of the color spectrum, dammit!

Poor Pluto, by Mathias PedersenApparently indigo is to the rainbow what Pluto was to the solar system.

And then you get the real... out there results: variations like bright purple, royal purple, deep purple, blue purple, purple blue, pink purple, pinkish purple, bluish purple, purpleish blue, purpley blue, purply blue (yes, those are two completely different colors), bluey purple, reddish purple, purplish pink, pinky purple, grey purple, dull purple, dusty purple, medium purple, lighter purple, red purple, electric purple, barney purple (what the hell?), neon purple, very light purple, very dark purple, brownish purple, just plain purpleish...

The Color Purple, Wayside SchoolYou know how after a certain degree of constant repetition, a word starts to lose all meaning?

And of course, let's not forget Erap's favorite color:

Fuchsia, xkcd color surveyFor the record, it's spelled F-U-C-H-Y- no, wait.

Bizarro Land Dot Com: Facebuko

It's actually a bit of a long story how I discovered this neat site...
  • First there was this post about Newsweek Magazine's financial troubles. (Egads. First Reader's Digest, and now this. *sheds a tear for the continually declining print industry*)
  • Then there was the original article it linked to, which of course prompted an impromptu time sink into Spot.ph (which isn't quite as severe as Cracked or TV Tropes, but can still get pretty addicting to browse aimlessly)
  • Then there's this priceless gem of a funny list: 10 Quirky Pinoy Facebook Groups. Go check it out. Now.
  • I was then intrigued by item number 8 on that list, Narinig ko sa UP. For someone who miserably flunked narrowly passed the UPCAT over five years ago (which I'm still bitter about, by the way... *sobs uncontrollably*), even I could appreciate some of the little gags and "in-jokes" posted on there.
  • Which brings me to this:
On Sunflowers, from Narinig Ko Sa UP

According to the Comments (Replies? Feedback? Whatever.) section of this photo, this image was reportedly screen-capped from a site called Facebuko.com:

Facebuko!

I think I am veering dangerously close to finding this site funner than the actual Facebook. I mean, how can you not love somebody whose dream is "to join and to win in a reality show"?

And sweet son of a fragmutt, not even Marvel superheroes are immune to cheesy pick-up lines.

Tony Stark is on Facebuko, by axilog14
Man, don't you just love happy accidents?

Facebuko logo

This has been The Anatomy Of A Wiki Walk Bizarro Land Dot Com. Tune in next week, when we try to recreate this puzzling xkcd strip:

The Problem With Wikipedia, xkcd... oooooor not.

May 2, 2010

Iron Man 2: a haiku review (SPOILERS!!!)

(This is why I should never be trusted with composing movie reviews or poetry ever again.)

Iron Man 2, international poster
Loony Russian guy
opens film in crazy room,
watched his father croak.

Half a year's time skip,
Tony gets fans and dancers.
"Top of the world, Ma!"

Government is pissed
Tony won't share his cool tech.
"We must get that suit!"

Tony Stark and his Hall of Armor
Tony and Rhodey
show up in two action scenes.
Best bromance ever.

Supporting cast... good.
Who promoted the chauffeur
to combat status?

Hammer just can't win;
Rich, but snivelling weirdo.
Reporter ditched him!

Justin Hammer
Techie con model
sure makes for one very odd
giant Chekhov's Gun.

"No suits... me make drones!"
Whiplash minimate should have
its own cockatoo.

Badass eyepatch man,
mild deus ex machina.
Thanks for the help, Dad.

Black Widow
OM effin' G!
Cute redhead works for black dude!
Awkward to the max.

Yay! Tony is "cured"!
His chest, now triangle-shaped!
Call it... "Extremis"?

Movie's, well, okay.
You should know this already:
stay after credits.

Nick Fury, mothafuckas.

(All images courtesy of slashfilm.com)

May 1, 2010

A cool website: Letters Of Note

(via Jessica Zafra's official blog)

They say it's rude or voyeuristic to sift through other people's mail, which might explain my great hesitance in taking up Nick Bantock's unique brand of fiction.

Griffin and Sabine, cover
It's not chick lit! It's an epistolary novel!

*ahem* Anyway.

There are a handful of cases where it's perfectly acceptable to read letters by and addressed to other people that are not you, though I can't imagine "sprawling them out on a blog beforehand for all to see" is one of them. And yet, here we are.

Your friend, Conan
This adorably priceless discovery comes to you courtesy of the website Letters Of Note, which makes an enlightening (and surprisingly fun) case for the preservation of the endangered art of snail mail.

I haven't fully trawled their archives yet, though a quick skim of the humour category is sure to provide something for everybody.

I got a real good guffaw out of Harlan Ellison's menacing blurb letter, and even awww'd at T.S. Eliot's generously whimsical "present" for his godson's birthday, but my personal favorite has got to be Robert Heinlein's one-size-fits-all fan reply.

Just personal enoughTruly he was a god among science fiction writers men.

April 30, 2010

Barakapool's last day approaches

Wow, I guess my lazy streak this past week was worse than I thought.

It looks like Barakapool's inaugural fortnight as a Bi-Weekly Mini is almost up, and that this coming Sunday it is time for him to step down and make way for another.

Since I haven't been able to do much pseudomutant-related shutterbugging the past couple of days, I might as well post the only other thing I've done lately that features the guy... which also happens to be a preview of that wacky little Minimate photo comic work-in-progress I've always wanted to finish.

And what better way to preview this soon-to-be epic Minimate saga than to show Barakapool getting his super-powered butt kicked!

The Gene Pool Plot by axilog14, panel 1
You may recognize a couple of these characters from this dinosaur of a post.

Tomorrow: another grand geek holiday approaches!

Ahh, it's that time of year again.

Free Comic Book Day 2010, banner

Last year was my first Free Comic Book Day. That was also the year the second official FCBD Minimate came out, which might very well explain how I wound up taking part in that one. (The first one came out way back in 2005.)

FCBD 2009 Minimate
My COMPLETELY FREE!!! haul from that year wasn't too shabby at all.

My FCBD 2009 haul
And of course I did manage to succeed in getting my squee-riffic quarry that year... however I wasn't completely absolved from blowing a whole wad of cash that day.

My FCBD 2009 Minimate haul
I'd certainly like to have at go at attending Free Comic Book Day again, never mind that there's no free Minimate giveaway for this year. The downloads page from the official site have been an unexpected joy to browse through.

FCBD 2010, Sergio Aragon├ęs promotional art
Official art by the kick-ass Sergio Aragon├ęs. Because history is best told through fun comic doodles.

This Photo Made My Day!

(via io9)

Patrick Stewart and David Tennant in Hamlet
This image has all the makings of the best surreal sci-fi crossover EVER.

April 23, 2010

My Top 3 Fictional Mini-Musicals in Film (also: SPOILERS!)

Shows within a show applied in mainstream cinema are fun.
Ludicrously entertaining full-blown production numbers fabricated expressly for a single climactic scene in a movie are even funner. Especially if they are musicals. Because hey, everybody loves musicals, right?

Glee promotional wallpaperGo on. Admit it.

But for me, the best kinds of ludicrously-entertaining-full-blown-musical-production-numbers are the kind that are so silly they're awesome, and then they loop back around to being silly, and then back to being awesome, and... God, I hate vicious cycles.

Of course one of the occupational hazards of being a freakin' awesome metafictional musical climax is that sometimes the musical alone outshines the entire freakin' film itself. Almost makes me feel for those all those directors who'd accidentally botch up their creative visions by overcompensating in one specific part of it. *cough*

In any case, what better way to pay tribute to this wacky cinematic spectacle than by spoiling the endings of three movies you might have never seen!


3. The triumphant climax of Forgetting Sarah Marshall (You know the one.)

In all honesty the scene in question can't be found on YouTube, but seeing as Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a genuinely great movie (well, maybe not Citizen Kane great but still pretty good), I highly recommend watching it anyway, comically cathartic dirges about blood-sucking counts aside.

What I can say is, the live version is even crazier awesomer.



(As a side note, what is it with Craig Ferguson and puppets? Is it a Scottish thing?)


2. "Rock Me Sexy Jesus" from Hamlet 2



This little nugget poses the advantage of being both entertaining and potentially blasphemous all at once. There's also the matter of that infectious melody, which will give you such a serious case of LSS that perhaps an exorcist will be the only way to help you.

Really though, the whole plot of the movie itself plays like an exercise in surrealism. (Come on, a musical sequel to Hamlet?!) But again, to be quite honest I had only managed to catch the last half hour or so of this movie. (Stupid HBO.)

The actual onscreen musical runs a bit longer this one YouTube clip... much to the dismay of the fictional moral guardians who I bet were practically gnawing their arms off throughout the thing. But hey, comedy is comedy. (That last statement also applies when you find yourself asking, "Wait a minute, what does Jesus have to do with Hamlet?")

(Also, I'm vaguely sure that whole song is a reference to "Rock Me Amadeus" or something. I don't really know, not my decade.)


1. The Bonnie And Clyde musical from Stuck on You

If you need just one really good reason to sit through this mildly disappointing comedy about Siamese twins, then let it be that beautiful ending where (SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT!) Walt finally gets to fulfill his lifelong dream of being a successful actor.

But really now...


... what better reason do you need besides Meryl Streep in a dance number and Greg Kinnear's kickass singing voice? Day-um!

April 22, 2010

Lupe Fiasco is (still) a pretty cool guy.

When did things start to go so horribly, horribly wrong in hip-hop? When did ingeniously eloquent rapping and mind-blowing experimentation with sound take a backseat to lazy musical hooks and bland, insipid paeans to girls and booze and bling and big shiny cars and... well, you get the idea.

Yep, for a while it really looked like hip-hop was doomed to die a slow, painful, tastelessly autotuned death... not that it hasn't already.

But holy crap. Four years ago.



Oh man.

Oh man, oh man, oh man.

To put this into easy-to-understand chick terms, OMG I love this song!!1!

Like damn, I cannot stress enough how this song and this guy were such a revelation to me then.

I mean, how can somebody be zen enough to turn this...


... to that?! Like, whoa.

I mean, how many honest-to-goodness rappers do you see around who still dare to push the envelope with the genre? How many do you see who do what they can to stay faithful to hip-hop's original subversive roots, aren't above sampling white boy music or dabbling in strange, new cultural realms all for the sake of ahht?

Kanye West, imma let you finish
Of course what really sells this song for me was how much it tied into 2006, one of my more fertile "musical experimentation" years.

my CD choices circa 2006I had a very odd concept of musical experimentation then.
(And yes, I do keep an inventory of my CDs in Microsoft Excel. Shaddup.)


And wow, I just discovered that it was Lupe Fiasco who performed the insanely popular "Superstar."

Ladies and gentlemen, the revenge of the hip-hop geek is in your homes.

Double, Double, Deadpool Trouble

The Revenge of the DeadpoolsThe moral of this story: You don't mess with nerds and/or psychopaths. And especially not meta-fictional psychopathic nerds.

April 20, 2010

Why Grissom quit

Today I had an interesting conversation with my younger sister. The conversation went something like this:

"Ate, ba't nawala si Grissom sa CSI?"
"He retired so that he could start a new life with Sara."
"Ano?! Sila ni Sarah?!"
"Yeah, you remember when the Miniature Killer held her hostage...?"


Grissom and Sara sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S..."He's old enough to be her dad!" Sis's exact words. (Kind of.)

Hollywood ID: The beginning of hormone poisoning

The gist of this is simple: When you hear a specific actor's name, what iconic role of his or hers immediately comes to your mind?

I find this a neat little mental exercise just to make sense of which of a certain artist's more memorable projects most resonate with their, er, target demographics.

Today's topic? Christopher Eccleston.

Christopher Eccleston
When you hear the name "Christopher Eccleston", do you immediately think
  1. the Duke of Norfolk, the morally ambiguous bad guy from Elizabeth
  2. Major Henry West, the morally ambiguous bad guy from 28 Days Later
  3. Claude Rains, the morally ambiguous ensemble dark horse Invisible Man from Heroes
  4. the bad guy from the G.I. Joe movie Destro
  5. the Doctor
... Or are you the uber-obscure type who'll best remember him as Nicole Kidman's absentee husband from The Others? Or that evil British guy Nicolas Cage takes on in Gone in 60 Seconds? Or the lucky bastard who got to see Kate Winslet naked onscreen once? Or that guy who surprisingly can only drive an automatic?


Man, typecasting is weird.


And if I had to choose between Eccleston getting typecast as an evil British guy and an eccentric time-traveling alien, well...

April 18, 2010

Minis Bi-Weekly: The Debut!

I've decided to experiment with a new feature on this pitiful excuse for a blog: Every two weeks I'm going to shine a spotlight on one of the myriad little plastic doodads I seem to amass in plentiful supply in my wee shack.

For the following fortnight I'm going to carry a camera and the unfortunate little inanimate critter around with me whenever I can and see if I can make hijinks ensue. Failing that... well, a brief history of the thingy will be in order, I guess.

Why two weeks? Because a mini a day is too intensive even for me, a mini a month is too long a wait, and a mini a week is... already a bit too much work for me. (Yeah, I'm hopelessly lazy. So sue me.)

Of course, the doodads don't necessarily have to plastic. (They can be any other material, like wood or plush or gold-plated titanium or something.) Neither do they have to be "doodads." (I am also receptive to tchotchkes, gizmos, doohickeys, thingamabobs, whatchamacallits and other miscellaneous bits of weirdness.)

The only requirement is that the featured object must be a mini (meaning it must not outsize this random jar of choco hazelnut spread at my side right now), and it must be mine (meaning it is either in my possession or somewhere in the immediate vicinity of my person... but I'm not picky).

The Axilog14 Gift GuideNow where does this sound familiar?

In any case, this fortnightly feature shall thus be called Minis Bi-Weekly. Because hey, it rhymes!

For this first installment of Minis Bi-Weekly, I bring you a newly-introduced comedy classic from the annals of Minimate collectordom. Straight from the screen and into articulated block form, let us all give a warm round of applause to...

... the X-Men Origins: Wolverine Toys 'R' Us wave 2 exclusive
Final Battle Deadpool Minimate!!!


Barakapool the Minimate!"Mmmmfffggnnnmmmf."


















(*crickets*)


Okay, a little background for all you uninitiated out there:

Just a little over a year ago, word got out that the 26th wave of Marvel Minimates was going to be based on characters from the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie. At the time speculation was still running wild on the who's who of mutant cameos that were supposed to be showing up in this rendition of the X-Men's favorite snarly Canuck's origin story.

A mere month later, this poopstorm erupted.

Long story short is that some spoileriffic previews of screenshots and merch had confirmed that Deadpool, one of the most highly-anticipated cameos in the movie, was going to be undergoing a very un-Deadpool-y transformation somewhere in the course of the movie's plot.

Attempts have been made to make this horrible, horrible thing go away! rationalize the logic behind this news tidbit. Debates over the wardrobe aspect of pragmatic film adaptations of comics-based works were instigated anew. And fanboys the world over were practically seething, nay, frothing with RAEG.
As for his blades, they aren't that big of a deal to me. But I am not the typical comic fan that gets super upset when simple changes occur. Instead of swords, he has his own body blades. Not that huge to me.

But I am not the typical comic fan that gets super upset when simple changes occur.

when simple changes occur.

simple changes

Deadpool vs. Barakapool, by McDurg

And thanks to an opportune tie-in exclusive deal with (the U.S.-based) Toys 'R' Us, we had our own Minimate version of Barakapool this confounding mutation of the original Deadpool.

Needless to say, the disgruntled fanboys I will have a lot of fun with this Minimate.

April 16, 2010

It's official: Manny Pacquiao is hipster fodder.

(via Vinyl Pulse)

I always knew that Manny Pacquiao making the transition to designer vinyl would be inevitable. Thank you, MINDstyle.

P.o.P. Collection banner
Note the post date of the VP announcement... I wonder if somebody out there actually thought this was an April Fool's prank?
This summer, MINDstyle will be producing the P.0.P. (Pride of the Philippines) collection, which features the unexpected pairing of two world-class icons. One so happens to be the most famous mouse in the world, the other being the greatest pound for pound boxer in the world. No other than Mickey Mouse and Manny Pacquiao. For those of you who don’t know, MS are huge fans of "”Pacman” and plan on turning him into vinyl. The other half of the P.O.P. collection is Mickey Mouse with an attitude.

Mickey MouseManny Pacquiao

Oh, who am I kidding? Of course somebody out there actually thought this was an April Fool's prank.

P.o.P. Collection: Pound For Pound T-ShirtAnd to prove that they were extra-serious, they made a T-shirt.

And should you wish to behold what the Pacman may look like rendered in vinyl collectible form, here he is.

P.o.P. Collection: Pacman figure, digital prototypeExcept with more paint.