Friday, October 19, 2018

So I Re-Watched Blade...

So you're home sick, it's late at night, and you're the only one there.

Of course you turn on Netflix.

If you're me, you break up your binge watching of murder mystery shows with something a little less intellectual.

This past weekend, I picked Blade.

Released in 1998, the film beat Sam Rami's Spiderman to the box office by four years and the amazingly campy Nick Cage version of Ghostrider by nine, making it the godfather of the current generation of Marvel movies.

So, how does Blade hold up now that it's old enough to enroll in college?

I think it does fairly well for what it is: a late 90s Action Movie.

Let's run through the checklist:

- Grim Loaner Protagonist with a Tragic Backstory?

Blade is the Daywalker, the result of an in utero infection by the vampire curse. He inherited supernatural speed, strength, and senses along with a thirst for human blood and an aversion to sunlight. He was rescued from the streets by a grisly Kris Kristofferson and now lives in an abandoned factory with his adoptive father and every day is a war zone.

He's so hardcore focused on killing vampires, he starts a firefight with one in the middle of a crowded park and basically ignores a hostage until she's about to be hit by a bus.

Status= Check

- Dark clothing? With buckles? Sunglasses at night?

Status= Check, Check, and Check

- Sweet fight scenes?

Status= Check.

- Old People being one-upped by the younger generation?

The Vampire Council is straight out of the White Wolf playbook. Only, you know, without the superpowers.

So, when frat boy vampire Deacon Frost pulls a coup, the audience (of mostly young males ages 18-25) is supposed to...empathize? I guess?

Too bad his master plan would lead us directly into Daybreakers...

Status= Check?

- Computer technology that miraculously solves an ancient puzzle?

Because literally antediluvian beings (previously characterized in this movie as ossified fossils obsessed with past traditions) have failed to remember the language and religion that provide both the teleology and eschatology of their entire race?

They misplaced an entire temple? Forgot how to speak vampire?

Status= Sigh. Check.

- Pervasive Profanity to prove we're edgy?
Donal Logue's character alone would carry this
Somehow, I had not remembered the amount of foul language in this film.

Status= Check.

- C. G. I. (!!!)

Status= Check

90s Action Movie Status= Definitive.

Let's be honest. Why did I, or anyone, watch this movie?

To see Wesley Snipes kill vampires with style. And that just never gets old.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Heroes Unleashed is LIVE!

The Heroes Unleashed Kickstarter is Live! 

That's right, super hero goodness is right around the corner, but we need help from YOU to make it happen!

What do you get for your support? 

As little as $1 gets you a sneak peek at Serenity City: Heroes Fall. If you saw my last post, you know I enjoyed the heck out this story.

If you're on the fence, pick this up. I promise not to smirk when you come back to pick to up the whole thing.

Additional support will snag you anything from a discounted E-book to a T-shirt to autographed, limited-edition hard copies.

What does this have to do with your blog, Wattsbot?

I've been asked to join a group of talented, award winning indie authors to bring you one of the series for Phase I of this project!

I cannot express how excited I am to be a part of this team. I've been reading comics and writing stories since middle school and to have the chance to bring both of those things together in my own series is simply mind blowing.

I'm hard at work on the first novel, Apprentice, which should be out Spring 2019.

I'll have a little something to whet your appetite soon.

Until then, keep your eyes glued here and check out the Heroes Unleashed website for more info!

Monday, July 23, 2018

Silver Empire Announces: Heroes Unleashed!

Today, the fine folks at Silver Empire announced their latest project- "A massive foray into the world of superheroes. Heroes Unleashed is a multi-author, shared-universe superhero world launching this fall ​from award nominated and critically acclaimed authors."

They're kicking things off in style, too.

He wanted to be a good man. Instead he became a hero. ​
Imagine Serenity City, a ​beachfront city​ on the east coast. For years, the city has been protected by the Triumvirate - three of the most powerful, and certainly the most famous, heroes in the world. Achilles with his super strength. His wife, The Banshee, master of deception and guile. And their best friend Pendragon in his shining armor. No serious threat lasts long in Serenity City under their watch!
Until the Rampage - the infamous day when Achilles lost his mind, leaving a half-destroyed city and the body of the Banshee in his wake.
Twenty years later, Serenity City is completely changed. Pendragon still reigns as the world's most famous hero, but he reigns alone. Banshee still lies in her grave, and Achilles rots in solitary confinement. Young Victoria, an up and coming hero, finds herself investigating a new mystery. Why are young and forgotten heroes disappearing off the streets? Why doesn't anybody else care? And how is it tied in to those infamous events that brought the city's greatest heroes to ruin?
And when Achilles escapes, it throws a wrench in everything!
But nothing is as it seems in Serenity City: Heroes Fall by ​Morgon Newquist, kicking off Heroes Unleashed this fall.
Morgon was the editor on the Paragons anthology from Silver Empire, and also a contributor. I got to take a sneak peek at her first Serenity City novel and you will not want to miss out on this one.
Visit the Heroes Unleashed website for more details and stay tuned!

Monday, May 21, 2018

Lost in A Series of Unfortunate Events- Episode 4: The Robinsons Were Here

Netflix re-imagines the legendary 60's sci-fi series of the same name.

Rather than deluge you with a rapid-fire reconnaissance flight take on the show, I thought I'd try  something a little different and take things episode by episode.

This level of detail will involve heavy spoilers for each episode. [Danger Pun Goes Here].

Friday, April 27, 2018

Lost in a Series of Unfortunate Events- Episode 3: Infestation

Netflix re-imagines the legendary 60's sci-fi series of the same name.

Rather than deluge you with a rapid-fire reconnaissance flight take on the show, I thought I'd try  something a little different and take things episode by episode.

This level of detail will involve heavy spoilers for each episode. [Danger Pun Goes Here].

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Infinity War Giveaway!

The good folks at Silver Empire are sponsoring an incredible prize pack give away!

From the announcement:

Prizes include: an original 1994 print run of The Infinity Gauntlet limited series comicbooks in near-mint condition, Marvel Legends Series Electronically Articulated Infinity Gauntlet, your choice of Avengers character t-shirts in your size, Marvel’s The Avengers in Blu-Ray or DVD (your choice), Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron in Blu-Ray or DVD (your choice), and a $25 Fandango gift card so that you can get your own tickets for Infinity War!

The comics alone are worth the price of entry. Check out the link and throw your name in the hat!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Lost in A Series of Unfortunate Event- Episode 2: Diamonds in the Sky

This time in our episode-by-episode synopsis/reviews: Han Solo and This Planet is Cursed!

This level of detail will involve heavy spoilers for each episode. [Danger Pun Goes Here].

Monday, April 16, 2018

Lost In A Series of Unfortunate Events- Episode 1: Impact

Netflix re-imagines the legendary 60's sci-fi series of the same name. 

Rather than deluge you with a rapid-fire reconnaissance flight take on the show, I thought I'd try  something a little different and take things episode by episode.

This level of detail will involve heavy spoilers for each episode. [Danger Pun Goes Here].

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Marvel's Black Panther

Finally got to go see this last week. Here are some thoughts on the biggest movie of 2018 (so far).

[Heavy Spoilers in the Screenplay section]

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Secret Stairs

There they stand, surrounded by nothing but forest, pristine as the day they were built. No sign remains of any other structure around them, no ruins of long forgotten buildings. They look... wrong. They feel wrong. Bad things happen if you get too close. Horrible things.

You must never, ever ever talk about them.

Thirty-four of today's best up and coming writers provide wonderfully unique interpretations inspired by the urban legends of the Internet age. Tales range from science fiction to fantasy, horror to mystery, and one writer even penned a romance!

But you must never tell anyone about the stairs!

I am very pleased to announce that my short story, The Sentinel, was chosen for inclusion in this anthology. 

Secret Stairs will be on sale from today until March 10th for only $0.99!  Get yours at Amazon or Goodreads!

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Netflix's Altered Carbon

I watched the first episode of this show. I won't be watching any more.

For the analysis, I refer you to the inimitable Daddy Warpig:

"Netflix’s new Cyberpunk-Noir series (because what Cyberpunk needed was even MORE cynicism and venality), based on the 2002 book of the same name by Richard K. Morgan, is ten hours of the worst humanity has to offer. Literally. The very worst. The series is more violent, uglier, and more all-around depraved than HBO’s A Game of Thrones. Watching it leaves you feeling filthy inside, like your soul itself needs a good, hot shower."

There's more at the link.

Watching this first episode reminded me of a C. S. Lewis quote:

It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree helping each other to one or the other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all of our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations — these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendors.- The Weight of Glory

I've covered before how hope is what's missing from many of the stories of our modern day. Altered Carbon proves the point eloquently. 

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Update on the Unplug and Some New Plugs

Turns out I'm not dead, just really busy. The post-Christmas season has been one thing after another for me, but it seems to be calming down.

In the odd five or ten minute break, however, I have found some fun entertainment.

First, Larry Correia has these two posts over at his blog about his experiments in creating a fast paced, simple table top game based on Gritty Cop Shows.

The recaps were incredibly fun (more so for me since I've actually seen Heat and am a big fan of cop procedurals and crime dramas). I so want to play this game.

Second, I stumbled across the You Tube channel for Spacedock. From the channel: "A series where we look at the specifications, history and lore of fictional spacecraft from science fiction. Any Spacecraft, any Sci-Fi."

The videos are usually short, running 5 to 10 minutes, but new videos are posted often and there are plenty of them. I've enjoyed listening to the breakdowns there, especially getting a peak at franchises I'm not as familiar with, like The Expanse.

If that weren't enough, the host of Spacedock has a longer form podcast called Subspace that has just begun.

Go check those out and check back here soon for some exciting news!