Saturday, May 21, 2016

Starbolts #310: When the World Comes Crashing Down


Earlier this week, I mentioned on Twitter that I was going to drop a train on Crystal. Not a literal one of course. This one was full of drama. First off, her adopted brother, Dennis, is an alien. That's a shocker! It also explains why he didn't change like Jenna and Adam when Jade Skull converted them a while back. Poor Crystal.

Now we find out the exact circumstances of her parents trying to sell her to Terra Nova. Crystal is going to bonk some heads when she gets back to Earth from wherever this is. I really dig the "Kirby Krackle" I made on the background. The floating island is of course D.I.S.C.O.R.D. island. How did it get there? We'll find out soon.

There's a lot going on this week that's for sure. I may even have the writer of that file, Clive Marshall, show up. He's a character from the prose Starbolts stories and he's a right nasty piece of work, let me tell you. From the file, you can tell he is cold. He has a connection with certain members of the Legion, too. We'll find out more about that soon enough, too.

Oh and Crystal has diamond hard claws now. They are like cat claws in that they retract but they aren't as indestructible as Wolverine's. They are diamond-like and come out of her fingers. She's going to wonder how she got them and there is an answer for it. Right now she's running on pure adrenaline and fighting the urge to crumble into a heap and cry.

She almost did and Tornado sneaked up behind her. Luckily she took care of it and got him good. ;-)

Video next week with Harmonica Jay on drums!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Starbolts #309: So Many Twists and Turns


What a tangled web we've weaved here in Legion headquarters. Raven is working for Umbra. Poor kid, by the way. He accidentally allowed Cobra to be reborn. Ouch.  Crystal is working for the Starbolts. Is anyone working for the Legion? Eh, maybe anyone who isn't a double agent.  Everything is not how it seems! Hell, maybe Valentine really likes Crystal! Yeah, right. Let's not go crazy, here. She doesn't like her. AT ALL.

Initially, I was going to make the computer lab look like that Cerebro computer area you see in the X-Men movies and in the Incredibles. That being a round room with a central computer terminal. It's cool. Too cool for the bad guys. The Starbolts will probably get one like that at some point. This room is enough as we got that interactive map of the world in the background. Not bad for the baddies, huh?

So, what did Crystal see in the file? We'll find out next week. It's a little shocking and connects well with Dennis's file. Oh, my yes. Still, what does Terra Nova want with the Wilson farm? I doubt they have a recipe for decent grits.

Either way, something has shocked her to her very core. She doesn't even care Valentine's behind her right now. She's too busy reading and having her heart be ripped to shreds. Not a good day for Crystal, I think. I hope someone speedy can pick up the pieces.

Stay tuned next week for Crystal's reaction.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Starbolts #308: Unexpected Arrivals


I'm still riding the buzz from seeing Captain America: Civil War yesterday. The movie was awesome and yes everyone should go see it. I see no reason not to. I liked it because it was dark but not TOO dark. There was comedy. There was action. It was very much like reading a comic. Characters were well-balanced and I don't want to repeat myself from the blog post yesterday but yea go see it. You won't be disappointed!

Anyway, we seem to be in trouble in this week's comic. What's the old saying? Out of the frying pan and into the fire? I think that sums this week's comic up. If you remember the Halloween special from a few months ago, you might recall how Cobra was visited by the ghosts of Soldier Six. They told him that his hold on his body is rapidly fading. Sooner or later he would have to lose it completely.

Now, what does this have to do with the missing Raven, you might ask? Well, I will explain that in due time. Right now all I can tell you is that it's all connected somehow.

I also made some slight alterations to Crystal's sprite. Just made the hair a little better. This arc is really going to be a good one for her and I hope you all enjoy it! She is going to have a huge rivalry with Valentine as you can see. She's also going to have to deal with Tornado and eventually find out something that will shock her. Things will look bleak for a bit, but, they will pick up.

See you next time!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Captain America: Civil War review

How do I start this text review? I don't even know where to begin! I enjoyed the movie as much as I thought I would. The trailers got me all hyped. Talking to people who have seen the movie only got me MORE hyped than I ever thought possible! They didn't even spoil me! That was...fair. Sort of. =) So, this morning at around 10:30 me and two other people went to see Captain America Civil War. From start to finish I loved the movie! This, in my opinion, was the accumulation of everything that had been built up on in Winter Soldier, which I also enjoyed immensely. I think what I am going to do is give my thoughts on each of the characters in the movie as a way to sum up my thoughts. It seems fair because to be honest there was a lot going on and I don't want to leave anything out. Here I go. No spoilers.

Captain America/Bucky : Oh, Steve. They put you through the ringer this time didn't you? I'm not going to spoil anything. But, I think it was a good idea to have Cap be the primary focus of this movie. Sure a LOT of Avengers were in it and they all had a development of some sort. In the end, this was Cap's tale and as one chapter ends, another opens. We won't be seeing the last of him. And you can tell he really put a lot on the line to save his friend, Bucky.

Bucky went through a lot in this movie, too. The programming by Soviet forces took its toll on him and he had to deal with the consequences. He was an unwilling pawn in a dangerous game and perhaps audiences felt sorry for him. I mean, here was this guy who was frozen, like Cap, and instead of doing good he is sent out there to destroy. This is grounds for severe PTSD. The Winter Soldier program took away his life and what this movie ends up being about is Cap trying to save his friend and trying to get him back.

Iron Man: Stark, Stark, Stark. It's hard to get behind him. I know a lot of people like him and he might have the right point of view. But, at lunch someone brought up a good point. Who would keep the checkers in check? If the team is in check, what's to stop the checkers from getting to powerful. There is the old saying "Absolute power corrupts, absolutely". Stark spends the movie clearly wrestling with the ideology and it leads me to believe that there is no right or wrong side in this conflict, a conflict by the way makes a LOT more sense than the comic by the same name. The conflict made a lot more sense this time around because it wasn't just one thing that set things in motion. (Re: The Stamford incident from the comics)

This was building up for a long time and didn't seem forced our heroes. Stark was feeling guilty (Mainly over Solkovia) and felt he needed to be the devil's advocate. The problem arises is what if the devil becomes more of a threat than you know. That is Cap's whole position.

 Black Panther: Without giving anything away, Black Panther and another guy I'll be discussing in a bit stole the show. Things have been set up for his solo movie pretty well. I enjoyed how they introduced him without him feeling like he was shoe-horned in. He blended in well with the rest of Earth's mightiest and I want to see more from him in the future. Chadwick Boseman played the character as I've always thought he should be: Regal, bit of an edge and let's face it. He is Marvel's Batman. Sorry, Moon Knight.

T'Challa was portrayed brilliant here and given just enough screentime for us to really sink our teeth into what's to come in the future of the MCU. And speaking of the future....

Spider-Man: I think everyone who reads my comic and watches my videos know how much of a Spider-Man fanboy I am. I grew up reading the wallcrawler and watched every live action iteration of the character. I can safely say that this version as played by Tom Holland is pretty damn good. His Peter Parker is dorky and clumsy and we've come to expect that of Peter. If you're a long time reader, you'd know just how geeky and relatable he can be. This is the Peter Parker as created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko all those years ago. While the Raimi and Webb movies were close, the MCU version hit the nail on the head as far as I'm concerned.

As far as Spidey goes, he was amazing! He joked a lot and I understand it would get on peoples' nerves. But, the thing is this is who Spidey was when he first showed up in the '60s. Spidey was a kid who never shut up. He'd make jokes. And what people need to understand is that he makes the jokes because he's scared to death. The jokes were something I missed in the Raimi films and even the Webb ones. Sure some were there but they were far and few between. It was like the movies took small parts of Spidey's character and focused on that. Here? Here we have the whole package in just a half an hour's worth of screentime. Spidey's back in the MCU, true believers and I for one am glad. Welcome home, Spidey!

All of the other characters stood out for me too. Everyone had something to do and a bit of their character arcs were expanded on. There was a bit of Vision/Scarlet Witch I liked and of course Ant-Man was amazing. I won't spoil what happens but every review I've seen of the movie stated that the airport fight scene was one of the highlights of the movie. And what Ant-Man does in it is pretty incredible.  Widow, Rhodes and Falcon even had decent character moments. I was impressed with how the Russos balanced everyone. It'll be interesting to see how they take care of the future Avengers movies and whatever films they work on.

Now we come to the villain of the piece, Baron Zemo. Yeah, I know he's not called Baron Zemo in the movie. I'm still going to call him that. He is every bit the manipulative jerk he is in the comic. He doesn't fight hand to hand. That isn't his style. Some might say he's underused, but, he did enough damage indirectly. He isn't a guy who will fight someone head on like I said. He's a background player and I think having him in the movie will set up a future role. As for what that might be, well, I suggest you remember something from an old comic I reviewed....

Justice, like lightning.

Overall, I'd say I enjoyed Captain America: Civil War. It was hard for me to find anything I DISLIKED. You can call me a Marvel fanboy if you want. I just am glad we got to see an introduction to Spidey and Panther that were smoothly transitioned into the fold, a Civil War that actually made SENSE and a great moral dilemma to talk about. You don't get a lot of those in comic book movies and I even asked everyone I was with....Whose side would you be on?

Well, once the dust settled, Earth's mightiest will have to reassemble once the big bad comes and in my opinion, I think the Russo brothers will be more than up to the task. We live in an age where our heroes are coming to life on the big screen and it's gratifying to see them done justice.  It's a great movie. Great action, drama and just enough darkness to see that there is some light at the end as we see dark moments that were meant to be dark. Go see this movie when you can! The movie satisfies me as a comic fan and as someone who likes to see good movies! (Including ones with our heroes). We will see where the MCU goes from here and so far it looks good!

P.S. I should mention that there are two credits scenes and my audience stayed for both. It was actually shocking to see people stayed for that.