Farscape: 15th Anniversary Edition is the ULTIMATE box set.

March of 1999. I had heard rumors about this show, a sci-fi show set in deep space starring actors and… muppets? Not The Muppets mind you but creations from Jim Henson Studios. Now I’m a bit of a sci-fi nut so it was a sure thing that I was going to at least watch the premiere.

That’s all it took. I was hooked.

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We had seen great effects before way back in 1999, hell The Matrix opened the same month. What we weren’t prepared for was that a series would try to pull it off weekly. And pull it off they did, four full seasons, 88 episodes. And every one of them written, acted, and produced to the absolute limit of their ability. There were people (soon to be ex friends of mine) who didn’t love the series but I never heard anyone put down the production. The new collection has been re-mastered from the highest quality source material available and it shows. I expected to be disappointed in the fifteen year old effects but man this show aged well.

For those not familiar with Farscape let me set the scene, or rather let the main character, John Crichton, set the scene…

My name is John Crichton, an astronaut. A radiation wave hit and I got shot through a wormhole! Now I’m lost in some distant part of the universe on a ship, a LIVING ship, full of strange alien life forms! Help me, help me! Listen, please. Is there anybody out there who can hear me? I’m being hunted… by an insane military commander. I’m doing everything I can. I’m just looking for a way home.

An everyman (granted an astronaut everyman but still) flung who knows how far from home. He is literally the only one of his kind anywhere within his reach, this show took the “stranger in a strange land” idea to a whole new level. Ben Browder played that befuddle everyman well and with a modern twist, he often gets visibly frustrated with his situation. Very easy guy to relate to.

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Claudia Black, Anthony Simcoe, and Virginia Hey play wonderful aliens. Each represent a different race and they all brought life and believability to roles that easily could’ve been played campy or just silly. And the puppets. Rigel and Pilot. I don’t like to refer to them as such because when you watch the series you truly forget that they’re not 100% as real as the rest of the cast.

 

 

farscape-ZahnI’d love to spend the next couple of hundred words telling you every cool aspect of this show but that’s not really what this is about. Besides there is page after page of fan sites, tributes, encyclopedias, and youtube playlists dedicated to the show and its stars. This article is about the box set….

Twenty-seven discs. 88 episodes. 15 hours of bonus features. If you remember this show you definitely remember Farscape: Undressed the special behind-the-scenes episode hosted by Ben and Claudia, it’s here. There are 3 documentaries, 3 featurettes, deleted scenes, Director’s cut scenes, an alternative version of the season two premier. There’s even a new documentary Memories of Moya featuring the cast and crew.

But for me? For my money? 35 audio commentaries. I know it sounds cheesy but I love to sit back, watch an episode I’ve already enjoyed and this time experience it through the eyes of the cast and crew. Browder, Black, Simcoe, Hey as well as Rockne S. O’Bannon and Brian Henson and so many more give us insights, anecdotes, and great personal interplay on so many episodes.

FarscapeCompleteBD1Physically this box set is a treat. Each season is in its own box with some beautiful cover art featuring a member of the crew with the fifth disc reserved for as they put it “the archives”, a disc of documentaries, behind the scenes specials, and featurettes with series composer Guy Gross.

I can’t say enough about this set. Fan of Farscape? Buy it. Fan of sci-fi? Buy it. Fan of great tv? Buy it. Here let me fill you in on the details, you know so you can buy it!

You can go to Cinedigm and order it there, or on amazon. Heck head over to bestbuy and get it from them! Here’s the breakdown…

Farscape: 15th Anniversary Edition

Season 1 (Discs 1-6)
Season 2 (Discs 7-12)
Season 3 (Discs 13-18)
Season 4 (Discs 19-24)
BONUS (Discs 25-27)

DVD SRP: $129.95
DVD Configuration: DVD 27-pk SET
DVD Run Time: 68h 6m + extras
DVD Catalog #: 88129606000
DVD UPC: 025192210600
DVD Closed caption: Yes

Blu-ray SRP: $149.95
Blu-ray Configuration: Blu-ray 20-pk SET
Blu-ray Run Time: 68h 6m + extras
Blu-ray Catalog #: 88129605000
Blu-ray UPC: 025192210594
Blu-ray Frame rate: 24
Blu-ray Closed caption: No
Blu-ray Subtitles: English

Studio: The Jim Henson Company, Inc.
Licensor: The Jim Henson Company, Inc.
Language: English
Color: Color
Line: FLATIRON FILMS
Series title: Farscape
Season No.: The Complete Series

Not Mint In Box – Lego Toy Review! Lego Marvel Avengers set #4597

This is a continuation of the theme, seems we had some Cap Lego sets to work with so why not build them! This time is set #4597
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Captain America™

  • Item: 4597
  • Ages:6-12
  • Pieces:44
  • Retired product

Create a poseable Captain America™ with a powered-up suit and shield to take on any villain – then create your own custom superhero!

I know it’s another “retired product” but it is available at newegg.com for $39.99!

Take a look at the build…

 

Not Mint In Box – Lego Toy Review! Lego Marvel Avengers set #6865

That’s right I’m playing with my toys on camera again! Not Mint In Box let me do another build! This time it’s:

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Marvel Super Heroes

Captain America’s™ Avenging Cycle

  • Item: 6865
  • Ages:5-12
  • Pieces:72
  • Retired product

Speed into battle with Captain America’s Avenging Cycle to defeat the general and the foot soldier in the craft with folding wings and a flick missile!

 

Lego Marvel Avengers set #6865

Yup, 72 pieces of butt kicking Captain America coolness. I really have to say, whether or not you’re a big Lego fan having a Lego Cap mini-fig is awesome. And he has a motorcycle? C’mon my kids still haven’t gotten to touch this set!

Here’s my build, hope you enjoy it!

Marvel Knights: Hulk – Get Your Pre-Orders In!

Posted on November 15, 2013 by Nancy Joyce @ What’cha Reading

The Hulk will be smashing his way through Paris in Joe Keatinge’s new Marvel Knights: Hulk miniseries. Keatinge is collaborating with Polish artist Piotr Kowalski to put an amnesiac Bruce Banner on the run from unknown pursuers in the City of Lights.

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While existing in continuity the miniseries will stand on its own. The new line of Marvel Knights books are meant to focus on creators, giving them familiar characters to play with in ways that working on an ongoing book may not allow.

Keatinge says the following on his blog:

I can promise the following things appear throughout the series; Giant explosions, things getting smashed, a lot of Hulks that aren’t Bruce Banner, The Hulk that is Bruce Banner doing some heinous shit,

(continue to What’cha Reading for more, plus pages!)

NYCC Loot! MegaBloks Call of Duty Mountain Recon set 06812!

To say NYCC 2013 was a blast would be an understatement. It was a convention rife with technical issues and stress for yours truly but that doesn’t diminish the fact that every single year just gets better!

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This year when I brought my kids on Sunday they were blown totally away.  Everywhere they looked was something (as my 3 year old kept quietly repeating) “awesome”.  The crowd was better managed than usual so we wandered around and took in the craziness, thoroughly enjoying the experience. After a couple of hours I figured it was about time to head for home, it was day 4 of the convention for me and I was all in. Before we left however we stopped at the Mega Bloks booth out in the foyer of the Javitz center.

Both my kids eagerly climbed into the jeep constructed entirely of bloks, I was told it took two months to build, and then dove into the bins of pieces and began building. I took a moment to chat with the reps manning the booth and quickly realized I was actually talking to the Call of Duty design team!

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Great bunch of guys, very into their craft and very happy to discuss things (how I wish I had a video camera at that moment!). As we talked I brought up a few little problems I had encountered with a Halo set I had recently built and the designer asked if I’d like a mini fig from this series… Um Yes Please? So as we walked over to get one a Mega Bloks employee approached and struck up a conversation, I handed him my card as we spoke and he, very graciously, asked me if I’d like to review a set. Again I say Yes Please!

 

Here’s the review! It was a fun build, hope you enjoy watching it as much as I did building it!

 

First up the Blind Box (or envelope) Mini Fig…

Then we have the MegaBloks Mountain Recon set 06812,

 

 

And finally the Mini Fig from the Mountain Recon set 06812. Why a separate video for the mini fig? If you look at the lengths of the videos it took me almost as much time to do the set as it did the figure!

DaVinci’s Demons Season 1 – Political Intrigue, Sex and Violence! A Must Watch!

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Could there be any more interesting, more captivating city than Florence during the Renaissance? Home to Da Vinci, Botticelli, Machiavelli, as well as the Medici family the most powerful bankers in all of Italy?

Historical fiction seems to enjoy a special kind of popularity, from HBO’s John Adams mini series to shows like The Tudors, Rome, The Borgia’s and harkening back to “I, Claudius” people just seem to crave the political drama of days gone by, even Game of Thrones though firmly based in fiction seems to appeal in the same way.

Maybe it’s that these periods of history seem less civilized but more civil. Less clean but some what more clear with the divide between the haves and have-nots even more pronounced than now (or some might say just as pronounced). And for some strange reason we, as viewers, accept (even revel in) the idea that in these times where royal families ruled with iron wills and people died from common diseases that upstarts and free thinkers like Leonardo Da Vinci ran about flaunting their brilliance in the faces of all.

Starz’ version of the Maestro is reminiscent of BBC’s Casanova, bash and adventurous, but darker more mad and intense. Leonardo (played brilliantly by Tom Riley) is an odd, impassioned, brilliant, brave malcontent who while striving for greatness steps on toes and causes trouble (for himself as well as others) almost categorically.

If he was just this, just a brash young arrogant misanthrope, the show would fall flat on its ass. But this is not the case. Series creator David S. Goyer’s (co-writer of the Dark Knight Trilogy and Man of Steel) has gone to great pains to show us the Da Vinci represented by writings (including Leonardo’s own) of the period. While I watched the first episode and saw Leonardo strap his young apprentice Nico (Eros Vlahos, one of the many characters you’ll meet who are more than they seem) into his human kite contraption and send him into the air I thought, oh please like that happened. Guess what, it did. Numerous times. In real life the experiment even resulted in breaking both the legs of one of Leo’s close friends. That’s the magic of this show for me. The things I would dismiss as “storytelling” turn out to be truths, others of course are half-truths and exaggerations. This is historical fiction, so that’s to be expected and part of the fun.

Season one’s plot follows Leonardo’s journey through his life in search of greatness as well as embroiling us in a mystery. His lifelong fascination with his mother’s disappearance and a half remembered experience in a cave as a child make Leo very susceptible to the secret organization, The Brotherhood of Mythras, and their quest for book known as “The Book of Leaves”. Once our hero hears that the book and the quest for it may give him answers, he quickly becomes obsessed.

It isn’t smooth sailing. There’s a conspiracy at the Vatican, the Pope (played by the menacing James Faulkner) and some of his cronies (including the suitably creepy Girolamo Riario played by Blake Ritson) are protecting the “Secret Archives”, a treasure trove of knowledge, and they’re going to make sure Leo doesn’t find the answers he seeks. All the while working to overthrow the city-state of Florence and remove the Medici from power.

A mad creator! An evil government conspiracy! Florence in the 1400’s! Political intrigue, sex and violence are everywhere in this attractively filmed well acted drama. It’s just chock-full of the things that make a show like this a must watch. How can this get any better? Well season two premieres in October, so I guess we’ll find out!

Want to see for yourself? Watch the first episode for free at Starz’ site for Free Full Episodes!

Or you could buy the first season on DVD! I highly recommend it!

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Are you going to NYCC? Then come to the Starz’ panel Fri 10/11 at the Javitz Center.

this article originally appeared on whatchareading.com 09/27/13

Translucent Creature From The Black Lagoon Variant, from Mezco

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Ah yes “The Creature” one of those iconic characters that everyone knows. Mezco has a great lineup of classic figures but this is one of the ones they’ve really captured the essence of…

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I know, I know The Creature was never translucent but it just adds something, something creepy. I’d love to have this on my shelf.

The 9 inch translucent green (with 11 points of articulation) variant ships 10-10-13 (during NYCC) and can be ordered here! Oh did I mention it’s limited to 100 pieces?

Order it here

Ultimate Wolverine vs Hulk! Marvel Knights and Shout! Factory Continue Their Quest for Animation Domination!

In their quest to release animated versions of every cool Marvel story line Shout! Factory and Marvel Knights bring you Ultimate Wolverine vs Hulk!

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Now I remember back in 2006 when this mini series started. I don’t think I caught on at the time that it was being written by Lost co-creator and Producer Damon Lindelof. What I did notice was that it was amazing! We all (comic book peeps) go on and on about who kills, who doesn’t what character has this or that moral set this series pulled no punches. C’mon Hulk ripped his freakin legs off!

 

Needless to say after the first issue I knew I was buying the rest! But then the bane of the comic collector set in, the dreaded delay! Issue three had been scheduled for release in April of 2006 and after no less than eight rescheduling it was announced that issue three was cancelled until the rest of the series was finished. The scripts being finished the assumption is that the delays were at the hands of the artist Leinil Francis Yu but editor in chief (at the time) Joe Quesada remarked that Yu was very excited to get back to the series once he was finished working on “Secret Invasion”. We may never really know all the reasons for the delays but it doesn’t matter, taken as a whole this story was truly well done and one hell of a lot of fun!

But we aren’t talking about the comic are we? This is about the animated feature (motion comic to be exact). We’ve had discussions around the water cooler over at Whatchareading.com regarding whether or not a motion comic is a cartoon or something different. Though most of the contributors over there disagree with me I’ve gone on record more than once that I regard motion comics differently. This one doesn’t change my opinion. To compare the current crop of motion comics to cartoons like Doctor Strange (Marvel 2007), Hellboy Blood & Iron (Starz 2007), or Justice League: The New Frontier (WB) wouldn’t make sense. It’s not a better or worse argument, in my opinion it’s apples and oranges. I don’t compare comic strips to comic books either, the story telling is handled completely differently.

The motion comic stays true to the original (just like the previous release Marvel Knights Inhumans) so each chapter plays out in a flashback, the story told from more than on point of view. It was a rhythm I had to get used to but once I did it flowed nicely. One of the things about this series (and the Ultimate Universe in general) was the subtle, and some not so subtle, differences in the characters. This is the universe that gave us the Nick Fury we now all know and love (though I’ll always have a soft spot for the Steranko era Fury) and an interesting takes on  Betty Ross and Jennifer Walters. An interesting side note to those who haven’t read the series. She-Hulk makes a rather important appearance but not in the way you’d expect!

Once again Marvel Knights and Shout! Factory have given us a well written, beautifully drawn, engaging movie. They just keep getting better.

I can’t wait to see what’s next.

Pre-order Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk directly from Shout! Factory  for $13.98 or Amazon for $10.96 but order it now, you’ll be glad you did!

Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk
Written by: Damon Lindelof (Lost, Star Trek Into Darkness)
Art by: Leinil Francis Yu (Secret Invasion)
Bonus features: Retrospective Featuring Brand-New Interviews With Damon Lindelof And Leinil Francis Yu
Discs: 1
Format: NTSC
Video region: Region 1
Color: Color
Language: English

IDW’s The Crow – Skinning The Wolves 5 out of 5! Welcome Back Mr O’Barr!

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By Robert “Rob Base” Greenwood

I never get that feeling of excitement much anymore in comics. I have become a cynic in my own world and this makes me sad. When I received an advance copy of The Crow skinning the wolves my first thought was “how will this great property get destroyed this time?”

I was completely (and I mean) completely wrong !

The story is one part Maus and one part Gore Shriek and I mean that lovingly. The art work and story may not measure up to Maus completely but it’s placement in time and history does. The story follows a Man who is on the road to revenge and his victims are Nazis. So right off the bat you have a strong contender for the least loved villains ever!

I fell head over heels with the story and the style of story. It is James O’Barr at his all-time best and his love for his franchise [The Crow] shows in this book. I hope he has found his place in the world of comics and I hope he is happy there! Cause for me it’s in the pages of this collection. IDW has another big one and they know it!

O’Barr dedicates this book to Harvey Kurtzman, cartoonist and editor best know for Mad Magazine and Playboy’s Little Annie Fannie strip, and Jack Davis, cartoonist and illustrator known for Mad Magazine and The Crypt-Keeper, this alone shows class.

The Crow – Skinning The Wolves gets a 5/5!  Thank you Mr. O’Barr and welcome back!

The Crow: Skinning the Wolves TP

In this all-new tale James O’Barr and artist Jim Terry craft a harrowing story set in a concentration camp in 1945 Europe. The night train is being unloaded. And one of the passengers is making a return visit…

Writer: O’Barr, James
Artist: Terry, Jim
Cover Artist: O’Barr, James
Format: TRADE PAPERBACK
Price: $17.99
ISBN: 978161377610051799
On Sale June 05, 2013
Publisher IDW
Diamond Id: MAR130420

IDW’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Color Classics 11 gets a 5 out of 5!

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By Robert “Rob Base” Greenwood

It’s been awhile since I reviewed one of these remastered collections, the main reason was what can I say? Other than how much I love Eastman and Laird’s series so much! Well, with this collection it just became easier.

If you are a fan the first live action TMNT movie (and when I say “IF” I mean of course you are!) this collection will draw a lot of comparisons to the film. In the first film when April O’Neil, Casey Jones and the Turtles barely survive an attack by the Foot they leave NYC and head upstate to go into hiding. Then they arrive and the montage kicks in, all those awesome moments from the montage are there, from April writing in her diary, the Turtles continuing their intensive training, and doing odd jobs with Casey.

It’s all here, I had almost forgotten about these issues, and the ones to come, so well planned and so simply executed, it’s almost like reading a how to on make a perfect indie comic book.

This color classics gets a 5/5 and you will need to read all the issues before as well!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Color Classics #11

Writer: Eastman, Kevin
Artist: Laird, Peter
Cover Artist: Laird, Peter

Devastated by a traumatic fight with the Foot and the Shredder, the TMNT retreat to Northampton. This issue serves as a poetic coda to the original, astounding run of Eastman & Laird on TMNT.

Format: COMIC
Price: $3.99
UPC: 82771400344401111
On Sale: June 05, 2013
Publisher: IDW
Diamond Id: APR130355