zustifer: (comics: decapitated jughead)
If any of you is in the market for My Little Pony animation cels, look no further. Seriously. Stop looking.

(PS: spot the price typo.)
zustifer: (comics: decapitated jughead)
Wizard People, Dear Reader, Chris Columbus. July 5, 12:00am. View count: 7ish.

Yes, watched it again. Had to show it to Spook, who was appropriately overwhelmed by the hilarity. It's excellent, as ever. Wizard People: The Fabric of Our Lives.

Popeye (1980), Robert Altman. July 5, 6:30pm. View count: One.

Well, okay. This movie. This movie is not great; it has some problems. Those problems are not the ones that all the reviews I can find brought forth; it's a comprehensible movie. It's just not unified. There're these beautiful physical gags one moment, and long, poorly timed, dull scenes the next. All the clever timing that could have been is ruined by meaningless cuts to close-ups on arbitrary actors. If you're going to play the scene like a stage play, with people confined in a small area and relating to one another (the dinner scene comes to mind), don't destroy all your momentum and sense of your characters' movement by editing it to shreds! So, stage play/movie tension.

Then we have physical acting. Robin Williams is a plenty fine physical actor, so he set the standard. Apart from the circus performers who played random townspeople, he was alone. Shelly Duvall completely failed to sell her character; her bodily lines of action were halfassed and her opportunities for overdone takes and whole-body motion were sadly squandered. I suppose she's just not much of a physical actor (and as someone's review said, she was, surprising no one, very close to a nervous breakdown), but she was just put to shame (she did get the voice down pretty well though). Animated Olive Oyl's noodly limbs and forward-thrust head are her whole character. Shelly Duvall should have been using old Fleischer cartoons as her bible. Look at how animated Olive moves her hands every time she says something (sort of like how 3d animation is now, but it's more fun when it's live action). Even the 50s episodes displayed freaking anticipation and follow-through (watching this, it struck me that not only was the animation terribly reminiscent of Little Lulu but that Olive Oyl's voice sounded much like Little Lulu's, and what do you know?). Shelly Duvall's best acting was done when she was in the steam-pipe, because her body was immobilized, forcing her to move her head exaggeratedly.
Bluto was no great shakes either, but at least he wasn't on screen much.

I hoped in vain for essentially the entire movie for people to start doing things in rhythm, outside of songs. There was nothing really wrong with this movie that broad acting, editing restraint, and timing cleanup coulldn't've fixed, but... those things weren't fixed. (*) And they should have been. There were a few a lot of beautiful details and moments (Popeye forming into a circle as he rolls away from a punch, Olive Oyl yelling 'You'll be murdered!', the guy who could never catch his hat, the guy with the beard who looked like John Turturro), but they could not save this movie.

(* You know, this is so not true. There was an endemic tension between what it appeared Altman wanted and what the studio wanted, as evidenced not least by how different the acting (Altman) was from the editing (studio). Probably kinda doomed from square one.)
zustifer: (comics: Griffy as Wolverine)
Okay, I have been working on this for probably ten or twelve hours now:

To the Monarchmobile! )
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
Whenever I see Solomon Grundy (Animated Justice League version), all I can think of is an overgrown, undead Jeremy Irons.
I'd say 'Discuss', but, really. Where's the point.
(I had a link to the filmstills community, but it was protected, I guess. D'oh.)
zustifer: (comics: Karma)


I cruelly took away her little jacket. Ha ha.
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
Season Five of Justice League (Unlimited) is no Season Four, or Season Two. But it's not bad. There's some fun stuff. The season goes kind of randomly from on to off, and then winds up with a big 'curtain call' (as chmmr observed) at the end. It did have the generally hilarious brain-switch episode though.

A fun idea sort of brought into view was that the Flash's city (Central City = Chicago? Minneapolis?) was shaped positively by Flash's general attitude. It's not clear whether cities are a reflection of their heroes or vice versa (or neither; maybe they change along with one another), but it's amusing to think that maybe Central City is sort of harmless because the Flash is fundamentally a sweetheart who doesn't wish anyone harm. This also lends weight to his contribution to the Justice Lords plot.

Schwa, I am not sure where you got your My sexual preference is: Stop the robots! gag, but it allowed the following exchange:

chmmr: Lex Luthor is so gay for Brainiac.
me: I don't know, I think his sexual preference is 'Kill Superman.'
chmmr: He can be both.
me: Oh, true! That's even better.

I also had this horrible quip about Flash getting off over being naked in front of Batman for a millisecond (while changing into his costume at high speed). I mean, this is a series where I swear that Wonder Woman's mom thought she and Hawkgirl were dating (there is really no reason that Wonder Woman shouldn't be gay), but in which no one can actually get together. Also I'm horrible.

There're some episode summaries and copious screenshots here. Spoilers ahoy, though, obviously.

Oh good golly. And I've just noticed that there are at least three cast members of Firefly in the series (all Unlimited, apparently). Sort of explains why some relatively minimally backstoried characters ended up not sucking.
zustifer: (Nivlem says See Here)
So I figured I should mention that the latter (at least up through #4) seasons of Justice League (the animated series) _do_ eventually get good. The third season (really the first season of 'Justice League Unlimited'; loads of DC heroes are added to the Justice League instead of the seven usual ones focussed upon in the first series, 'Justice League') has some real clunkers (I am looking at YOU, 'Hawk and Dove'), but eventually finds its stride and does not try to cram a two-parter's worth of material into a twenty-two minute episode anymore. I was really, really discouraged, before we got to the stride-finding, to the point that I almost gave up on Unlimited. But the wise chmmr suggested we continue to give it a shot, and I am pleased that we did.

The first two seasons especially (and bear in mind that we have not yet watched the fifth and final) were just excellent, in part because each story was given two episodes in which to play out (at least after a little ramp-up time. Also needing some ramp-up is the writing of dialog for the Flash, but that really does pick up). Very well-handled. They essentially standardised the length of a story as two episodes long. Now suddenly all kinds of things can be fit in. There's fightin', there's character development, and there's some really clever letter-of-the-law evasions of the rules we're all used to from Batman the Animated Series: no blood, no dismemberment of organic beings, only trauma allowed is blunt-force (teeth can't be lost), explosive, or electrical (meaning: no disfigurement). No killing, period.

The series is especially good because it knows the rules and just - just bends them a little, every now and then. Implied blood. Frozen evil dictator. Moral ambiguity all over you screen. Sometimes, not all the time. There's a great ratio of Good Clean Punchin' to Whoa, Did That Just Happen? The context is impeccably constructed and maintained.

And for Unpleasant, Green Arrow _does_ get a part, albeit with a chunk of it in a weird episode where everyone is a complete dick and utterly unsympathetic. Wildcat's in there too. Just power through the Supergirl and stuff should improve.


(This avatar is Nivlem, scanned from an early MAD Batman parody. He's doing not just Explaining Hand, but Explaining Hand With Helpful Pointing. He's very smarmy. But it would be wrong to use my Marvelly other superhero avatars to make this post. I'm not a big DC person (outside of Batman's rogues' gallery (inside of Arkham they keep it too dark to read comics), Sandman, and Books of Magic), but Justice League does somewhat flatter me by allowing me to be all 'Isn't this guy [something something] because of his [backstory]? I THINK he might be...' and then it turns out that like any child of six, I am right. Yay.)
zustifer: (Five)



(courtesy Taiyo Matsumoto's 'Blue Spring.')
zustifer: (1 of 11)
Apart from being kind of cool on its own, this post about a spot for some arcane brand of beer also shows that people were substituting 'your' for 'you're' even in 1962.
Unsurprising, I guess, but, there it is.
zustifer: (Barbara)
This joke went over well in class today (in a thread that took until the last fifth of its life for someone to mention that the premise didn't make any sense. Asimov's laws aren't natural laws that happen to be for robots, or anything. They require, you know, buy-in from the robots' creators).

Also someone in class had set a closeup of Old Snake from the Metal Gear Retirement Home as their desktop. I snickered quietly to myself to see the characteristic painful-looking overly sideways-bent wrist. Ouchers.

I like this post better without the 'attention spammers.'

Also important but won't fit anywhere: it's really amazing how much Venture Brothers picks up in the second season.
zustifer: (Beetlejuice: He likes it)
I'm pretty burnt due to this week of extremely long days (I am taking over a class for another teacher), but I nevertheless have time to post these awesome screengrabs of a Sailor Moon episode.


Note Sailor Mercury's little DS-like pasocon. It's supposed to do whatever improbable computery things are needed in the episode. I don't know, it makes little beepy noises.

Larger, more hilarious pictures down here. )

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Karla Z

February 2012

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