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The Famous Jett Jackson (1998)
I usually dismiss most Disney shows as being really cheesy. This is one of the few exceptions probably because all the characters are believable. The series managed to impart little lessons and morals without shoving them down your throat.
It's got a good title too. "The Famous Jett Jackson". Nice ring to it. It's the story of Jett Jackson, a boy who stars in an TV action series called Silverstone. It sounds more like a tire company but anyway...Jett convinces the network to move filming to his hometown in North Carolina. That way he can be with his father and grandmother, and pal around with friends Kayla and JB. Jett had to deal with being famous, having his father as the sheriff and dealing with his parents' divorce. Other characters included Booker the town deputy and Cubby, a props master on the set of the show. Now you'd think one moron-type character would be enough but you'd be wrong. They pushed that a little too far. I didn't mind Cubby too much since he actually had some worth but Booker was just a bumbling fool. Also on the set, you had Riley Grant, who looked like she was thirty, and co-starred with Jett on Silverstone along with Nigel who played Artemus. The Silverstone segments fit well into what was happening off set too. I remember one episode where the director wanted them to start using guns to heighten the action but Jett didn't want to. That was a good episode.
Sure the theme song sounded like a rip-off of Eric Clapton's "Change the World" but it was a pretty good show that didn't lose it's plot arc. Deals with issues and what not but is still fun.
Poketto Monsutâ Aka (1996)
I had no idea this game would be so addictive. Despite being on a small black & white Gameboy screen, the game's content and appeal overcomes all that. There's so much to do in the game that it drives you nuts because you want to do it all. There are 150 kinds of POKeMON (in this Red/Blue version) to be found. They are all unique which makes it easy for anyone to pick a favorite (my personal favorites were Kadabra, Omastar and Raticate). Your goal is to earn all 8 gym badges from the different elemental leaders and beat your rival to becoming a POKeMON Master. Little side quests put you in situations to collect more POKeMON. The more you have, the more flexible you can be in battle. The catchy music is great for Gameboy standards. It changes depending on the town, different places you walk through, your current action and when you're in battle. I thought it was cool they incorporated all the game themes into the cartoon. Sometimes the battles could get tedious as there are always many competing trainers on the way from place to place. It was a great way to build experience but in certain spots they were just overwhelmingly annoying. I haven't played any of the sequels but I've seen some of the new character designs on the more recent versions of the cartoons. I don't like them as much as the old POKeMON. It just seems like they're trying too hard.
Overall, POKeMON is a great game and I dare you not to get addicted.
The Facts of Life (1979)
When books are what you're there about and looks are what you care about...
The Good: Charlotte Rae as Mrs. Garrett (who was also the housekeeper on Diff'rent Strokes). She was kooky and goofy but she was sweet and there was something warm about her. She ran the boarding school, took good care of them, and was always there to talk to them. Even when they got in trouble, she'd punish them but still be understanding. They were all different characters you could relate to probably because they were realistic. I remember the opening the most: Mrs. Garrett holding a broom and the girls teaming up on her, the paint throwing scene, Tootie with her huge braces and Blair with her hair dryer. Jo rode a motorcycle and had that NY accent and she'd always give Blair a hard time. Natalie had that hat with the lightning bolts and Tootie had mushroom hair.
The Bad: When they changed the theme by putting that stupid rock guitar in it which was cheesy and annoying. Unfortunately in later seasons the show's appeal began to decay. I forget what happened exactly but eventually Mrs. Garrett had that shop in the later episodes and then George Clooney was hanging around with excessively long hair. And then Mrs. Garrett wasn't on the show anymore and Cloris Leachman stepped in as her sister. She just didn't do it for me. Maybe because Mrs. Garrett was there for so long, or maybe because she had those little clips in the opening of season one.
Take them both and there you have: a good first season, bad following seasons and the cheesiest ending to a comments post ever. And of course, the Facts of Life.
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993)
Deep Space Nine is the only Star Trek series not to (completely) take place on a ship. Commander Benjamin Sisko is assigned to assume command of the station and help the Bajorans in the good name of Starfleet. The station was constructed during the Occupation, in which the Cardassians came in and enslaved the Bajoran people (similar to our own history). Now the Bajorans have regained control of their planet, claimed the station and are rebuilding with the help of the Federation. The station also guards the Wormhole which reaches far into a neighboring galaxy. The Bajorans believe this wormhole to contain the Celestial Temple, the home of their gods, the Prophets.
Where TNG was very episodic with a slight story arc, Deep Space Nine has a big story arc and most of the episodes hint on details of the big picture. Some compare it to a soap opera but I disagree because it has a higher quality of drama and characters, deals with war and politics that you don't get to see in TNG, expands more on the Star Trek universe, and also has morals that can be compared to today. Jean-Luc Piard will always be my favorite Captain but I liked Avery Brooks gave a great delivery as Sisko. His character was a bit weak in the beginning of the series but by Season 4 he had established himself. Major Kira has to be one of my favorite Star Trek characters of all time. The strong willed station commander is a fighter and doesn't take crap from anyone. Her strength, determination and faith are hit right on the mark by Nana Visitor. Jadzia Dax was a fun character because of her playful and witty nature. You also get Worf carrying over from TNG, another stable, strong crewmember. I liked Odo for his sarcastic remarks and rough exterior but also the fact that he acted that way to protect his soft interior. Bashir and O'Brien were alright, they didn't really stand out that much. Jake and Nog just kinda hung around. You got to see different ships (Klingon, Jem Ha'dar). The Runabouts were crappy but the Defiant was cool. You also got to see the Federation go to war, although I would have liked to see more TNG crew cameos during that portion of the story line.
I had a few problems with the series, mainly Jadzia's death. I liked her character a lot, and was very disappointed that Terry Farrell wanted to leave so she could co-star with Ted Danson on "Becker". Of course, in the Star Trek production world, an actor parting ways with a series means death to that character. This is similar to Tasha Yar in TNG. Then Jadzia was replaced by that awful Ezri Dax who I could not stand. I loved Season 7 with the exception of her and the fact that the crew spent so much time in that damn Holosuit. They were constantly hanging out with Vic Fontaine and sitting around. I liked the way they included more alien races in the spotlight (Founders, Ferengi, Vorta, etc.) but sometimes those Ferengi episodes were a little difficult to watch. Quark was the only one I liked because he was funny, conniving and always getting in trouble with Odo. I also don't know why they felt the need for those verbose and corny episode titles. Slightly annoying.
My favorite episodes include "In the Pale Moonlight", "The Dogs of War", "Wrongs Darker than Death or Night", "In Purgatory's Shadow", "Indiscretion", and "Shadowplay". It is Star Trek, but just takes a break from the constant treasure hunting for life forms quest. You get in depth episodes that not only tell a story but add to the whole series. Beautiful interconnecting story line, well cast, great episode scores (Visitor, Dogs of War, What You Leave Behind) and excellent in depth look at the darker side of Star Trek.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 (1988)
Joel Hodgson is my idol.
The man had the best idea ever. Take the crappiest movies ever made and make a show all about making fun of them. It's the idea everyone else wish they thought of first because we all do it. Joel found the formula, and the perfect way to institute it. Not only that, but because he worked his way up from his initial KTMA studio days and then finally to Comedy Central. The show later on was adopted by the Sci-Fi Channel after Joel left the show. I haven't seen every episode and the show was on when I was a kid, so there is still a lot I don't know about.
*POSSIBLE SPOILERS* I also love the premise of the show. You learn about the story in the theme song of the show. Joel Robinson works at Gizmonics Institute doing janitorial work, shipping, etc. His bosses, Dr. Clayton Forrester and TV's Frank, didn't like him so they took his red jumpsuit wearin' keister and shot him into space aboard the Satellite of Love. As part of their weekly experiments, they send him the cheesiest movies they can find and force him to watch. A man would go insane having to deal with that all by himself so makes a sacrifice. He can't control when the movie starts or stops because he uses the machinery to make robots. You've got Cambot, who's purpose is to film Joel as he makes his broadcast. Gypsy, the only girl robot aboard (aside from Magic Voice who is just a voice) who keeps the Satellie functioning. Tom Servo, the bubbly little gumball machine. And of course, the legendary Crow T. Robot made from gold parts, famously the bowling pin nose.
I've never been a fan of Mike since his onscreen presence didn't have the same strength as Joel. Mike did a lot of appearances (Torgo, Morrissey, Steve "Hercules" Reeves) prior to taking over as the human. He didn't have great host segments, partially due to the loss of the invention exchanges (which was Joel's fault). I just didn't like the fact that someone took the reigns for Joel and that minor changes were made to the set. Mike did the great writing for the show but his words came out better through Joel, in my opinion.
I think I first saw the show when I was 9 or 10 and just being floored by it. It was on at midnight on Comedy Central, and I would stay up late when I wasn't supposed to so I could watch it. I LOVED IT. I usually didn't make it for the full two hours but watching Joel and the 'bots was amazing to me. The first one I might have seen all of was "King Dinosaur". As time went on, I would tape all the episodes I could. I wanted to get a jumpsuit just like Joel's and I would run around making wisecracks I heard from the show. They released a few movies on tape through Rhino, namely "Catalina Caper", "Manos: the Hands of Fate" (CLASSIC), "The Gunslinger", "Side Hackers", and a few others as well as MST3K Shorts featuring different segments they performed. I'm waiting for them get more out. Other favorites of mine were "King Dinosaur", "Super Agent: Super Dragon", "Santa Claus Conquers the Martians", "Hercules Unchained", "Beneath the Ocean Floor" and "Eegah".
It's truly priceless. Awesome series, I wish I could have helped work on it. Turn your lights down (where applicable) and have a Patrick Swayze Christmas.
Out of Control (1984)
Classic revolutionary Nickelodeon TV.
This show was on during Nickelodeon's good days in the 80's. It featured Dave Coulier, now mostly well known from Joey Gladstone on "Full House" and host of "America's Funniest People". It was basically a news show except filled with goofy segments and quirky characters. Sure it had a crappy set and graphic abilities, but it was Dave back when he was funny and Nickelodeon when it was quality. There was also station manager Diz, who had hair and makeup like Cyndi Lauper, and her calling card was a high whistle-pitched scream. Some of the skits on the show were "It's Probably True" dealing with oddities around America, "How Not to Do Things", "Adult Education" (not porno, it's where kids are the teachers) and "Moments in Inventions". Diz also had a segment but I forget what it was called. All I remember is her animated face doing that scream; EEIIIIEEE EEIIIIEEE!
It may not have been the best show, but at least Nick was being creative and original instead of pumping out the garbage it is now. And of course, "CUT IT OUT"!
Wing Commander Academy (1996)
Wasn't given a chance.
I love Wing Commander and was very excited when the cartoon made its debut. Not only did you have the big name characters from the game, but you also had the voices of the actors who played them! Mark Hamill, Tom Wilson AND Malcom McDowell who make a great cast once again. The animation was crisp and held true to many aspects of the Wing Commander universe which was great to see. For WC fans, it enhances a lot of the game plots instead of ruining them plus there are some new characters and completely new stories. Unfortunately, they only got to make thirteen episodes. It was a high quality cartoon that really had the potential to be a great series. Hopefully it'll get picked up again because it deserves to be worked with.
Sailor Moon (1995)
Who could possibly resist the Sailor Scouts?
*MOON PRISM SPOILERS*
I've seen just about every episode they aired of this series since it used to be on weekday mornings. There will always be a special little place in my heart for Sailor Moon. Why? Because somehow the most whiny and lazy girl not only becomes a mystical heroine, but a princess as well. Serena (aka Usagi, Bunny) seems like a normal teenager but talking black cat Luna helps her transform into a super fighting force.
You've got a lot of great characters here and while Serena is the main character, you can still enjoy episodes featuring other members of the team. They find out they are Sailor Scouts one by one, and each girl has her unique personality making them easy to identify with. You also have Darien/Tuxedo Mask for the men. My favorite was always changing, but I did take partial favor to Jupiter. Even the bad guys are fun to learn about as Queen Beryl's minions have small subplots taking place.
The DiC Debate: Some people love what DIC did with the series, others tolerate or hate it. The upsides? The show had relatively good voice actors unlike other series that get dubbed. They weren't sloppy and matched up the voices for the girls really well. Serena's voice could get a little annoying but not on par with Melvin or Molly's New York accent. The edits are slightly choppy considering certain things had to be cut (nudity, certain violence, same sex relationships) and there were script revisions but it does not hinder the flow and there's plenty of good background music. The downsides? DIC did cheese-ify the series...like a lot. The episodes tend to fall into the repetition rut; Negaverse assistant of the week tries to steal energy for Queen Beryl, assigns monster to task, Scouts investigate and save the day. The Japanese version is on a much more mature level but you get to see more depth to the characters and story. It's also a little more elegant with the Japanese voices and the score for the show in later episodes is more masterfully crafted.
If you like the show, read the manga which is also really good and beautifully drawn.
The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)
Love it or hate it.
Roger Moore is back with his portrayal of James Bond: light, quipping, and deadly. People I've talked to about this movie either really enjoyed it or didn't like it at all. Many consider this a weak follow up to "Live and Let Die" or a forgotten 'in-between' prior to "Spy Who Loved Me". I liked this movie a lot for numerous reasons.
The Title Song: The rowdy jazz band gets your attention with this loud, upbeat song with vocals by LuLu.
The Plot: Scaramanger is a hitman who charges $1 million a shot from his golden gun. Bond's current assignment is to track down the Solex Agitator, a device that can harness the Sun's power. A golden bullet with a 007 engraving arrives at headquarters and Bond is ordered off the case but he goes to investigate against M's orders. There's plenty of mystery to Scaramanger. He wasn't a Blofeld or Dr. No but more like a sinister gangster. Plus he had a cool training facility and a hot girlfriend.
The Score: Beautiful. Some criticize Barry's work for this film saying that it's boring when that is not so. The movements included stand out enough to be enjoyed but does not overshadow any of the onscreen drama. The slow pieces are full and flowing while the fast paced portions accompanies the action perfectly.
Great Scenes: Bond beats a lot of people up in this one, and although Moore plays up the lighter side of the 00 Agent we see him fiercely determined in this film. I like the scene in Beirut when he meets up with the exotic dancer who still has the bullet which killed Bill Fairbanks, Agent 002. The best scene is the duel on the beach except instead of shooting at twenty paces, the man with the golden gun lures Bond into his fun house of doom.
Weak Spots: A few flaws, one being the reprisal role of Louisiana Sheriff J.W. Pepper from `Live and Let Die'. While seeing him be insult martial arts students is slightly amusing, his presence is unnecessary. Herve Villechaize's midget-butler character Nick Nack is not one of the famous henchmen of the Bond series. He does make for a fun final scene for the epilogue however.
A great film and one of my favorites. Might be too slow moving or boring for some unless you're a die hard fan willing to give it a shot.
*SPOILERS* Vin Diesel does a good job at playing himself: a big goon with a deep voice. In this movie his name is Xander Cage but friends call him X (eye roll). He loves extreme sports and ugly tattoos. Somehow his reckless behavior makes him suitable to be a secret agent. There's a lot of action; motorcycle escape, intense snowboarding, etc. I thought that silver platter surfing deal down the staircase was lame as it was so obvious it was fake. It tries very hard to be a new kind of action/spy film but there's nothing original going on here. In the beginning they show an agent similar to Bond being shot because he's out of place. Thus, XXX is initiated because he's more hip. The woman plays a large part in saving the day which is different. I don't mind action movies but I wish there weren't so many. Does Hollywood know we're not completely mindless?
Bottom line: it ain't deep or dramatic. If you like action or seeing block head Vin mack it, you might like this...if that is all you're looking for.
We actually watched this in Bio Class.
Ok, so it was at the end of the school year, but we still watched it. So these guys get dumped by their girlfriends, and to prove that they can be responsible or whatever, they sneak into the Bio-Dome. Of course, while they're in there they cause nothing but trouble. What a concept. Why isn't this everyone's favorite? It is so amazingly deep.
What can I say about Pauly Shore? Not much except that he's been taking a long "break". And Stephen Baldwin? Well, he went on to a glorious career too. C'mon, movies like...and, um...yeah. The scientist chicks were hot. I was p****d they had to make out with those two goons though. Don't waste your time with this one. Forget you even looked this movie up, it is that bad.
Hot scientist chicks: A+
The rest of this movie: F
Koko wa Gurînuddo (1991)
Really enjoyed it.
My friend introduced me to a lot of anime series, but this one really stood out. It's about a young boy who moves a dorm but the administration places him with 3 other slightly strange roommates. They gradually get to know and trust one another, and you learn about each one's story. I think they were in the high school/college age range. Each character has their own "special" quirk and problems they're trying to fix. It's a great drama/comedy that is funny and serious in the right spots. It might be too slow moving for some people but you just have to give it a chance. At the time, I didn't think I would enjoy it but I really liked this series. I wish there were more episodes.
The Ren & Stimpy Show (1991)
Don't wiz on the electric fence.
Ren & Stimpy is just pure insanity. Sometimes it would make me laugh, other times it would make my head hurt by the stupidity it would give off. However, something about Stimpy's innocence and Ren's anger problems kept me watching. Ren was always the brains of the operation but he'd always become corrupt. I enjoyed the first season more than anything that came after. My favorite episodes were probably "Fire Dogs", "Nurse Stimpy" and "Robin Hoek". I also liked the rubber nipples episode when they're driving around trying to sell Stimpy's nipples but the part where the horse asks for walrus protectors scared the hell out of me. He holds up this walrus that whispers "call the police". It was slightly disturbing. I also remember when Ren's cousin Sven comes to visit, and he has striking similarities to Stimpy. The first episode about Stimpy getting famous was pretty good too but it was so overplayed. My other favorite segment of the show was definitely Powdered Toast Man because he was the perfect exaggerated super hero. The show also used a lot of great music by Raymond Scott like "Powerhouse" and "Toy Trumpet" which are used frequently but work really well.
Gross at times, but classic Nickelodeon. "You eeeeediot."
Little Monsters (1989)
Sure that number doesn't work anymore, but for a while they had some contest where you could call up Maurice. Fancy that.
*POSSIBLE SPOILERS* "Little Monsters" is kinda like Beetleguese for little kids. These weird monsters lived under the bed and kids would go and visit them in their alternate world. However, kids didn't know they they were lured there to become monsters! I didn't know Howie Mandel was Maurice until I had the desire to look this movie up. He did a pretty good job as the wily monster. Fred Savage was good too, he was always one of the better childhood actors. His brother Ben is also in the movie way before his "Boy Meets World" days. I hated Boy. He was that huge, fat, disgusting blob that would pop kids' heads off. That was relatively disturbing. And obnoxiously gross.
The remainder of the movie is fun; there's a mirror breaking baseball game, Maurice and Brian sneaking into other kids houses from underneath their bed and pranking them, Maurice pees in the bully's applejuice and so on. To get back at Maurice for being mean, Brian would shut the lights off. That would turn him into nothing but a pile of clothes. Then Brian's brother gets kidnapped so he unites with his friends to go under the bed to save him. Classy.
A good 80's movie at the time that kids could relate to. Could be worth revisiting.
Family Matters (1989)
Apparently family doesn't matter!
"As daaaaays goooooooo byyyyyy..." *SPOILERS AHEAD*
If I remember correctly, Family Matters was a spin-off of "Perfect Strangers". Harriet worked at the office with Larry and Balky or something like that. It was kinda like "Full House" except with a black family. Carl Winslow, cop, has family with wife, Harriet. They take care of the old but lively Grandma, son Eddie who is yearning to grow, boy crazy Laura, mysterious disappearing Judy, that little bratty kid, and Harriet's sister, Rachel. Next door neighbor Urkel tried to show his affections for Laura, and for a while had competing woman, Myra who was cute but nagging. And don't forget Maxine and Waldo Heraldo Faldo!
Overall, they had a pretty good cast. I liked the show up until Steve Urkel's little visits engulfed the entire episode. And they also made that Urkel doll? I won't get into that. Carl Winslow was probably my favorite since Reginald VelJohnson was the strongest actor on the show. Laura was slightly annoying because she was always having the same boy problems. She kept picking morons that would try to take advantage of her, and Urkel would be there singing in her tree. And then there's Judy Winslow's disappearing act since they wrote her out of the show. Shouldn't a missing kid be a family matter? Eddy had some good episodes but nothing that really stood out. I think I remember him cheating on a test or buying a car, maybe.
Then to liven things up, Rachel had her own restaurant but I think that got burned down. She eventually bailed and left Richie there with the Winslows. Then one by one the family members left the show and they were left with Carl, Steve, Laura and Eddy. They put waaaay too much stress on that Carl/Steve relationship. I seriously thought he was really going to have a heart attack with the frequency they made him get angry. All Carl's kids got pushed into the corner to make way for Urkel, his robots and alter-ego Stephan. Ugh. The murder mystery episode was pretty good.
A good show in its early TGIF days, but then went to hell.
Sci-fi space adventure like it should be.
When we upgraded the computer, this was probably the game I missed playing the most. Probably because it was the most addicting game, especially if you love sci-fi space adventure or the Wing Commander series. It had all the elements of Wing Commander, but was still unique and while you had a story line to follow, you could fly off on your own and do whatever, whenever, wherever. Privateer was not an easy game, however. It took a lot of patience to get off the ground (literally) since you'd start off with a crappy Tarsus merchant vessel and 500 credits. The more missions you did successfully, the more money you'd make and you could afford fancy equipment and upgrade to the Orion, Galaxy or Centurion class ships.
Sometimes I'd try to overlap a whole bunch of missions (mostly the patrol assignments) but it was easy to get overwhelmed by the Kats or Retros. There were plenty of controller gripping narrow escapes which made the game that much more thrilling. The damage aspect of Privateer is great too, for systems get fried one by one. And if you didn't like playing a goody toe-shoes, you could turn around and be a pirate! You'd have to watch your back though, because then bounty hunters would come after you.
Great memories, endless fun. They seriously do not make games that are of this caliber anymore. Not only was it one of the first to contain real voices and great sound effects, the fact that you could do so much in such a huge environment was ground breaking. I never got to really finish the story but even if I had, I probably would have started it up all over again.
"Hello, Captain Goodan".
Poketto monsutâ (1997)
*CONTAINS POSSIBLE SPOILERS* Kids today must be easily entertained because this cartoon just isn't very good. The early episodes were better than these new series that they constantly come up with but even those weren't that good. Ash Ketchum wanders around looking for Pokemon, and eventually teams up with Misty and Brock. Instead of having one of the three main pokemon like in the game, Ash gets Pikachu. The two don't get a long at first, but they become the best of friends once Pikachu sees Ash cares about its well-being. After the beginning, all the episodes kinda just blend together. I'd say the only episodes I liked were the first couple of episodes, when they won a cruise on the S.S. Anne and then washed up on the Island of Giant Pokemon because the pokemon had a little pow-wow. The Diglet episode was pretty good too. Other than that, it was business as usual; Ash and company wander around, find a new pokemon, whip out the computer to see what it is, meet someone protecting that pokemon, and then Team Rocket always shows up to deliver that pledge and screw up. I wouldn't have minded it so much if it wasn't in EVERY SINGLE EPISODE, along with Team Rocket "blasting off again" into the sky until they became a sparkle in space. Now there are just too many pokemon to keep track of, and they keep making new series like Johto or whatever. They could have at least come up with some new villains who were actually a threat or put Gary in more episodes. While I really enjoyed the game, I think it's time for them to just put it to rest for now. It has already faded considerably.
Biohazard 2 (1998)
In a class of its own.
I got this game for Nintendo 64 and loved every minute of it. The best way to play it is late at night in the dark. You start off playing one of two characters, both on their own agenda. Claire Redfield comes to Raccoon City to find her brother Chris, a STARS operative from the previous game. Leon Kennedy arrives to start his new assignment at the city's police department. After you play through the game as the first character, you follow through with the second character. The story varies slightly depending on who you take and actions the first character makes will affect the second character.
There's plenty of action here, as you must fend off the undead with limited ammo, so strategy is also key. If you escape from the city in a certain time limit and difficulty level, you can unlock secrets in the game. This is definitely a challenge for finding your way, solving puzzles and finding necessary items takes time and patience.
The music for this game is fantastic, and perfectly fitting for survival horror. There are plenty of times when this game will make you flinch because of the level of suspense it creates. The voices came through a little scratchy, and the acting was ok but better than the first game. Sure the plot may seem to be similar to a B movie, but this story gets you hooked. There are plenty of surprises here, and I personally love the way the two character subplots intertwine.
I spent hours playing this.
I could not get enough of this RPG. It's just beautifully crafted, intelligent, fun and very challenging. It will take up a lot of your time. Seriously, it is impossible for any sitting to last less than 45 minutes at least! As the title suggests, a nuclear fallout has occurred. Eighty years later, the inhabitants of an underground survival vault designate you as the chosen one, who must go to the surface wasteland on a mission. You can select from a wide variety of skills, and experience points are awarded for battles and exploring. Not only do you have your main objective, but there's a lot to do here in side quests.
*POSSIBLE SPOILERS* I love the beginning of the game with the Inkspots singing "Maybe" and you see black and white pictures of nuclear explosions, those 50's future advertisements with the 'ad guy'; it just sets the perfect atmosphere. While fiction, numerous aspects of this game seem hauntingly and realistically possible. You meet up with different people like gangs, and can constantly upgrade to better weapons. After you finished killing someone, you can take items from their bodies which is great. It's fun to have other characters in your party but they die so easily especially later on when you've grown really strong.
Great game, great concept.
Danger Mouse (1981)
He's the strongest. He's the quickest. He's the best.
Another great show from my younger days, Danger Mouse used to pop up on Nickelodeon. I first saw Count Duckula before also stumbling onto this cartoon. Secret Agent Danger Mouse, looking heroic with his DM emblem and tough with his eyepatch, lived in a red mailbox on a street corner in London. His sidekick, the lovable but cowardly Penfold, was a blue suit wearing mole who would run behind Danger Mouse screaming "Oh, eck!". Colonel K, who I think was an old beaver or something, would call in and send Danger Mouse on all his dangerous missions to thwart the evil Baron Silas Greenback, a large frog petting a fuzzy caterpillar. DM would also drive around in his own super secret agent car, escape from snapping alligators and always saved the day. I also remember a lot of bombs exploding and that great theme song.
Rolling Thunder (1986)
An arcade classic.
This game is probably more memorable for those who played it at the arcades, although it also was on Commodore 64 and Nintendo. It was one of the first side scrolling action games (along with Mario). I remember liking this game primarily for the action and awesome music that would play in the first level. It sounded like a cross between James Bond and Mission:Impossible.
You play as an agent of Rolling Thunder, a special police force task unit. You're on a mission to stop an attempt to take over the world. You must also save Agent Leila, who is being held captive in their headquarters. Each area of the base is guarded by enemies with different weapons.
The terrorists wear different colored tights with long hoods, and their boss looks like an evil version of Yoda. Enemies usually take 2-3 hits to kill. There isn't a lot of leeway for error in this game either, as two shots will kill you. You have limited ammo in your handgun, but you can also find the machine gun in certain doors. As you progress, the enemies get harder to fight; some have grenades or will duck from behind tires and are really hard to shoot at without getting hit. I still go back to play it now and then. It'd be a cool title to bring back but it might not be that well known.
Fushigi na koala Blinky (1984)
This show was a lot of fun, and used to air on Nickelodeon sometime around '85, I think? The story was about a girl named Sandy Brown who lived with her mother and grandmother. Her father is a famous archaeologist working in Australia. He sends Sandy a package with a stuffed Koala bear before he goes missing.
*POSSIBLE SPOILERS* Sandy loved her new Koala bear and rubbed noses with it. She is in for a shock when it comes to life! Apparently, Dr. Brown sent Blinky to tell her that he was trapped in Koala-Wala Land. Blinky was lazy though, and enjoyed snacking on the Eucalyptis tree right outside Sandy's bedroom window. Sandy had to keep these secrets from her family and friend Mark, who had a crush on her. Blinky also had a sister. Her name was Pinky, a pink koala bear with makeup items that had special powers; the lipstick opened portals and stuff like that. She didn't like Sandy and wanted Blinky to go back to Koala-Wala Land with her. I guess there was no gravity in Koala-Wala Land because everyone could fly.
Fun cartoon, probably my first anime prior to Project A-Ko.
Captain N: The Game Master (1989)
Princess Lana was hot!
Captain N was the story of a boy, Kevin Keene, who was playing his Nintendo one evening (Punch Out, I think) when he got sucked inside of his television! There he was welcomed to the Palace of Power by Princess Lana. She wants him to help protect VideoLand along with other game heroes MegaMan, Simon Belmont and Kid Icarus. Kevin's belt had the Nintendo controller on it, and he could use it to pause, run fast or jump real high. His weapon was the Nintendo gun used for Duck Hunt.
I hated the way they made Simon Belmont. He was all stuck up and worthless when in the games he's the bravest of them all considering he fights the undead. He was very annoying in the show. Kid Icarus was ok. Mega Man is another of my favorite game characters but I was disappointed when I saw him in the show. I think he was green instead of blue and had a weird voice. It also seemed like they didn't have enough for the other characters to do. They'd just follow Kevin around, or hang out at the palace and do nothing.
*POSSIBLE SPOILER* The series was pretty good. Kevin would travel to a lot of different worlds from games like: Castlevania, Zelda, Kid Icarus, Mega Man, Paperboy, Metroid, and Punch Out. Donkey Kong was huge and had his own world called Kongo Land. My favorite episode was when Princess Zelda wanted Kevin to come to Hyrule (it took place during Zelda 2 and I think it was a two part episode). Link looked awesome and in one scene he fights Horse Head. King Hippo and Eggplant Wizard turn rocks into tomatoes in the desert and get squished by them. Another great scene is when they get attacked by Moas in the graveyard, and Gameboy smacks them with his Vid-Baseball Bat. I remember the Paperboy episode where everyone starts turning into zombies when they read this newspaper, and another episode where Kevin gets a VideoLand virus so everyone shrinks to go inside his body to fight it. There was also a Mega Man episode where gets a heart and meets Mega Girl (we could have done without her).
A nostalgic show, good solid series. I wish they had done some different things with it but ah well.
Back to the Future (1985)
"Make like a tree, and get outta here."
Timeless. One of the most amazing adventures brought to the big screen. Anytime this movie comes on TV or someone else is watching it, I find myself watching too even though I've seen it practically 20 times already. There are just so many great characters and the plot takes hold of you because it's exciting and humorous.
*SPOILERS* Everything fits together so nicely in this movie: the fantasy of time travel, a cool car, dire circumstances, a good villain, a variety of roles, great music (by Huey Lewis & the News) and so many great scenes! You've got Doc and Marty testing out the DeLorean and being attacked, people mistaking Marty for an alien, when Marty first arrives in town in the past and finds Doc, getting hit by the car and waking up next to his mom, the clock tower scene...they're all great! I think Marty McFly is one of the best movie heroes of all time. There's no super powers, easy way to escape or higher beings at work. It's just him trapped in the 50's with nothing but his wits. He's just an ordinary kid with big aspirations but plenty of quirks. Doc Brown is just plain crazy but goodhearted. Biff Tannen is the best example of the thick headed bully. The whole movie is intense since if Marty takes too much time to get his parents together, then he will fade away forever. Of course, in trying to make things right, Marty messes up here and there and constantly has to fix it!
What we have today simply does not compare to movies like this one. Sure, maybe they do big numbers at the box office for one weekend, but none of them will stand the test of time. They even managed to make the sequel, Back to the Future II (another great one) which wasn't a bomb like most sequels. They also made Back to the Future III which wasn't as good, but in my opinion this one was the best in the trilogy.
"When this baby hits 88 miles an hour, you're gonna see some serious sh*t!" - Doc
Count Duckula (1988)
Pray you'll never meet with DUCKULA. Count Duckula, heh heh heh heh!
"Castle Duckula, home for many centuries to a dreadful dynasty of vicious vampire ducks - The Counts Of Duckula. Legend has it that these 'fowl' beings can be destroyed by a stake through the heart or exposure to sunlight. This does not suffice however, for they may be brought back to life by means of a secret rite that can be performed once a century, when the moon is in the Eighth House Of Aquarius... The latest reincarnation did not run according to plan...."
*POSSIBLE SPOILERS* Thus began the creation of Count Duckula. Igor was doing the reincarnation but Nanny gave him ketchup instead of blood. Aside from goofy Count Duckula, you have Igor, his vulture butler who tries to push the Count into being a true blood sucking vampire duck and the maid, Nanny, who is a giant chicken with her arm in a sling but still bursts through walls either screaming "Oh Duckyboos!" or "I'll get it!". There was also a hunter after the count for a while and other times thieves would try to steal things from the castle.
Count Duckula first appeared in the series DangerMouse in an episode called 'The Four Tasks of DangerMouse'. He later on got his own spin off series. Both shows were aired during the 80's on Nickelodeon. I liked DangerMouse too but I loved Count Duckula because they were all crazy. Nanny was always ruining Igor's plans, and they'd use their teleporting castle to visit all sorts of places. It also had that great closing theme with all the weird pictures, sound effects and it would end with that lighting bolt. A really fun show, I'll have to find it on DVD.
"Goodnight out there.... whatever you are!"