Guess who's back?

The last time I did my writings, I was still raving on how Star Wars: The Last Jedi was gonna rock every Star Wars fans' mind based on the trailers released. I never got to review the actual movie because I stopped updating my blog sometime during mid-2017. I never published anything ever since although I have several unpublished blog posts (and unpublished they shall remain!) but I never got around to do my final reviews on them. You know where this is going. I never had anything done on this blog from mid-2017, all the way through 2018 (inconceivable!) right up till end-May 2019.

So why now? What made me come crawling back to this presumably 'outdated' mode of sharing my thoughts with the world?

Well, first of all, I kinda agree with some of the hardcore bloggers out there when they say that posts made on facebook and Instagram, although very interactive, tend to disappear over time as opposed to blog posts. Secondly, blogs are far more superior than most social media applications when it comes to archiving capability. One can instantly recall any posts at will because of the systematic archive tool available on every each blogging platforms.

Truthfully, I'm not even sure if there are still people out there who religiously read blogs any more. I may or may not get any audience, let alone any comments or feedback but that is irrelevant to me at this point. I need to channel out my urge to write and that's that. 

With that being said, I actually made a pact with myself some time ago to write at least a few times in a week but that didn't go down very well too, I must say. I kinda miss writing, or ranting if you must, about anything and everything, nonsense and all. The very core of this blog was always about action figures, pop culture and geek stuff but I think I might want to expand that a little bit and include other stuff as well. We'll see how that goes in the next couple of weeks.

Alright! So how should I do this? What should I write about for my supposedly triumphant return to the blog-o-sphere? After giving it some thoughts (a full 10 seconds or so) I decided to just talk about what I've been up too or indulge myself into in the last couple of weeks or so. Sounds good? Nay? Aye? Whatever. Just grab yourselves a cup o' joe and read on.....

That Game of Thrones (GoT) finale

Where were you for the last 8 years or so? Surely you've heard about this little show on HBO about the families who wanted to seize an iron throne in a place called King's Landing which ultimately controls the seven kingdoms. Astonishingly, there were also movements started by individuals who swore on their ancestors' graves that they had never seen an episode of GoT ever and therefore they shall not be tempted to watch the highly anticipated season finale a couple of weeks ago. Right. Go right back into the cave where you belong and stay there without ruining everybody else's experience.

As an ardent fan of the Lord of the Rings books and franchise of movies, I was naturally attracted to GoT HBO TV series although I never touched any of George R R Martin's books ever. What's not to love about a TV show with sword fights, sorcery and *ehem* partial n*dity. Oh, and they got it right with the dragons too, way better than what we saw in The Hobbit trilogy of films.

Anyway, back to the finale, one can say that there wasn't any short of drama and surprises (yea, I kinda expected Jon to pull what he did onto Dany anyways) to cap off a wonderful 8-year ride. Everybody got their just desserts I'd say! Jaime and Cersei's tragic ending, Bran's surprise ascension to the throne, Tyrion's brilliant mastermind prowess, the Hound's epic final showdown with the Mountain....kudos to HBO for the delightful end-offs for each of the main characters. A 'prequel' is already in the pipeline while we can safely assume that separate adventures/TV series have also been planned for Arya's "What's west of Westeros?" question and Grey Worm's planned journey to the Isles of Naath.

Good times ahead for GoT fans who can't get enough of all the dramas in Westeros!


At the time of writing this, HBO had just wrapped up the final episode for Chernobyl. I was gutted that it stopped at Episode 5 but you can only go so far with a non-fiction storyline. A friend once said that watching Chernobyl was like watching a horror show without the actual horror but is full of suspense nonetheless.

Some were also saying that watching Chernobyl is only natural after the end of GoT because viewers were left wanting for more after their series ended but the truth is Chernobyl started while GoT was about 2 episodes away from the end. In my opinion Chernobyl stands out among the best TV shows HBO had ever produced for us. So much drama from an expected historical point of view.

I was left wanting for more after each week and the next episode always succeeded in giving you that punch you were waiting for a week earlier. The acting was superb and you finally get to learn that piece of reactor explosion history that  you've always wanted to!

I loved it. Here's hoping for more TV shows like Chernobyl from HBO in the near future.

Netflix's Birdbox

Alright. I gotta admit. My wife and I watched Birdbox because purportedly 45 million viewers had tuned in during its first week of being on Netflix. The movie started of promising but as you realised that they were never gonna show the on-screen monster, you kinda question your decision to commit a couple of hours of your precious lives for this.

We want that 2-hours of our lives back Netflix! LOL.

To be fair, Sandra Bullock and John Malkovich were superb in their roles and that alone made the movie worth to watch. I kinda dig the ending too although I felt that they could've probably extend the movie a bit by showing us a glimpse of the monster at the very end.

I think by not showing how the monster looked like added to the mysticism of the show. It is said the the monster looked different to everyone that sees it. Like your own worst nightmare culminating right in front of your very eyes kinda thing. Smart writing!

Netflix's Black Summer

I love zombie flicks and I love zombie TV series. Let's just get that out in the open, just to be clear.

And I've watched many zombie shows in my life from George Romero's brilliant films to TV series like AMC's The Walking Dead....and even little known B-grade films too!

Let me be clear though that I'm an ardent supporter of Romero's zombie ideology. So that means no zombie in my world should be darn fast ala 28 Days Later or World War Z! So that made my decision to watch Black Summer a little questionable. Them walkers in 'Summer are darn fast! But I can't resist to watch a zombie series with such good reviews when it comes to the excellent chemistry between the on-screen survivors.

Technically I was supposed to watch Z-Nation first before going to Black Summer because they came from the same studio and the OCD in me wanted to chronologically get Z-Nation out of my system first. Ideally that was supposed to happen first but I never made it past Episode 1 of Season 1 of Z-Nation...I kid you not. I wasn't very intrigued with a zombie TV show that made me feel like watching World War Z all over again. 

But Black Summer got me and my missus hooked from the start. Something about the survivors' personae made us stay glued to the screen while we binge-watched the whole series in one sitting. Word is that Season 2 is coming up real soon, so we're definitely gonna keep tabs for that one.

Aladdin live action film

I, for one, was never a sucker for movie reviews done commercially by so-called professional experts of the industry (I'm talking to you Rotten Tomates and the likes!). If a movie was gonna suck, then let it suck after I've gone through it gracefully on the cinemas myself. I decide.

If you can recall, the new live action Aladdin movie was hit front, back, right, left and centre even before the movie's teaser trailer was released by Disney. The bulk of the controversy surrounded around the choice of actor chosen by Disney to play the character of the Genie. Yup, that's right. Even an Oscar nominee like Will Smith gets negative reviews even before the movie's trailer was ready for us to view. 

After the teaser trailer however, things got really worse when those so-called haters cemented their hate by claiming that they were right all along....and that Smith was destined to failed in the new Aladdin movie because he couldn't possibly follow through Robin Williams' footsteps in bringing the Genie to life.

That's when you haters got it wrong! Will Smith even hesitated to accept the role out of respect to Williams' legacy. But after you've watched the movie, you would soon realised that Will Smith didn't even try to copy the great Robin Williams' grooves but he made the role his own plus nods here and there to Williams' performance in the 90s cartoon Aladdin film.

So, Will Smith ONE.....them haters/incessant critics ZERO is the official scoreline. Smith was brilliant in the movie because instead of copying Robin Williams, he brought his own style to the film and it worked! My family and I absolutely loved the movie. Sure, it was a bit different from the cartoon but hey, it was thoroughly enjoyable and that was it. Go watch it now if you still haven't.

Star Wars Rise of Skywalker ...thoughts from the teaser trailer

December 2019 can't come fast enough for this one! But Disney's Star Wars flicks are not without backlash or hate from certain quarters of 'fans' these days.

What's not to love about another Star Wars film? I've said it before and I'll said it again. Back in the early 90s, many fans were left frustrated when ol' Uncle George Lucas made a statement that he'd probably not do another Star Wars film ever again (though this would be proven wrong by the end of the decade) so the only plausible thing left for fans clamoring for more Star Wars adventure was by reading the Expanded Universe novels. What made them more enjoyable was that George Lucas' team even skimmed through them before Uncle George gave his thumbs up to each and every of them books himself. Good times!

So why all the hate every time Disney gave us a new Star Wars films then? Remember there was a time when there was practically no way for us to get new SW stories except for the EU books. I think the generation of fans who went through those 'dark times' will probably appreciate the influx of SW films being churned out by Disney these days. What's with fans that get upset when things don't go THEIR way in Episode 7 and 8 thus far? Will JJ Abrams' Episode 9 quell your emotions later this year I wonder?

I think JJ Abram's return to the franchise might give Episode 9 that much needed push towards acceptance by the haters. Case in point, that nostalgia factor brought into the film i.e. Lando Calrissian, the Emperor, glimpse of the Death Star made it even more exciting for even the most hardcore of fans like me. Yup, suckers for anything related to the Original Trilogy films.

I think the same fans who dissed Will Smith in Aladdin could be the haters of everything Star Wars in the Disney era. Count your blessing guys, we're getting a closure to the whole Skywalker saga soon!

The Emperor's laugh at the very end of the trailer could be a red herring though, just to distract us from other pertinent things. But we'll see soon enough in December. But then again, coming from an OT die hard fan, nothing much to complain really when it comes to the revival of a classic character from the original Star Wars trilogy (oh yeah, did I tell you already how giddy I got when they first revealed Lando was coming back?!....uhm, yeah I did).

Star Wars greeblies

I'm kinda in a hiatus mode from buying action figures right now. I will be back on the forefront of action figure procurement one day but for now it's an absolute no-no when it comes to visiting the toy aisle at department store and the likes. But I'll still gladly accept donations nonetheless! 

So when one's better half found you this cool Pepsi cap featuring the great Chewbacca with Threepio hanging steadily from a net as we've seen from 'Empire, one can never really complain. For the record I really love these Star Wars Pepsi cap ornaments/mini-statues. What's not to like about them? They're small, easy to store and can be practically displayed anywhere with ease.

My better half also found me this the other day at a discount book store, a brand new plastic-wrapped Star Wars 2019 Annual hardcover book. She knew how big of an 'annual' collector I am since my Beano/Dandy annual collecting yeah.

Super Star Wars SNES game from 1993

If you're a Star Wars fan who lived through the 90s, then chances are you've probably played Super Star Wars at any point of time during the decade. My brother and I, we never got a SNES console but frequent trips to one of our cousins' place proved fruitful as they naturally had every new game cartridges as soon as they get released at retail. So that was how we got our Super Star Wars fix back in the day.

Fast forward to the 21st century, one needs not a SNES console to enjoy classic games. A quick trip to classic game websites is all you need to re-live the good ol' days of playing classic games of yore. Introduced this over the top Star Wars game to my 11-year old boy and he was instantly hooked. 

So for all of you Star Wars fans, in case you've missed the 90s, do check out the game and do yourself a favor and download this to your laptops for a smashing good 90s arcade type of fun!

And finally, this made my day....

I don't know about youse who frequent the local weekend flea market here in KL, Malaysia, but some of you might have seen this excellent (working) replica of G1's Ironhide parked somewhere in the parking area on Sundays.

This guy deserves a medal for brilliantly reproducing our favorite Transformers G1 van (sorry Ratchet fans!) by converting his weekend ride into one! Whoever you are, I salute you sir!
This is The Rebel signing off. Till next time.

The Rebel

1 comment:

Darth Daddy said...