Monday, October 10, 2011

Moves That Changed Our Lives

I'm gonna go old school for a moment (definition: things that were kickass during a younger generation). Now that I've leapt over the quarter century mark in my life, I feel I have the right to consider things I experienced and enjoyed as a child to be "old school". Most of you will be able to relate.

Movies are a tremendous part of why I am who I am today. They were the way my mother kept me out of her hair and kept me quiet. (And in the 90's .. it was either become a unique individual or pimp your snap on bracelet & jam to your favorite boy-band. The damage of 90's pop culture is permanent, so don't feel guilty that you have songs on your iPod that you don't want anyone to know about.)


In 1993, I sat in the very front row of the movie theatre with a friend to watch Jurassic Park. It was.. AWESOME. It totally changed my direction in life. From that moment -- I was 100% sure I wanted to be a paleontologist when I grew up. Even started studying more on the subject in my free time. This was the very moment, at 8 years old, when I become a true, full on geek -- because anything that affected me strongly became a subject of study for me, and I have learned everything I possibly could. Less then 20 years later, I get excited when Jurassic Park is on television, and I relive some of the same emotions of wanting to reach out and touch something long gone.

Other movies that impacted my life substantially:
All Tim Burton films (you should see what happens when I doodling and not paying attention. People always say it's like something out of a Tim Burton movie)

How about you? Can you think back to your younger years and pinpoint a movie that specifically affected your life?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Awkward.


Granted, I'm not huge on television. Most of the time the shows either annoy me, or bore me completely. Which is why I found myself rather stunned when I began watching the MTV series Awkward. with considerable diligence.

Why? 

Well, I find it edgy and raw. A teenage world full of humiliation, bullying, and secrets. Quite the world I remember, in fact. The teen dialogue makes me grin a little because it's clever and not full of preppy words. the lead character herself is a definite fav, and the fact that she blogs the horrid events of her life is awesome. One minute she's on top of the world, next the raging school biatch is pouring what appears to be iced coffee down the front of her shirt. Classic. I can appreciate that we find ourselves with a "real" person type of character.. not someone totally perfect that is popular and wanted by everyone. That sort of show annoys me. Instead we have a level-headed teen struggling simply to survive high school. I think we've all been there at some point.

My least favorite aspect of the show? The bully, Sadie. What the hell were they thinking when they cast this chick? I understand them wanting the bully to have a weight problem.. fine. But realistically... how many of us were bullied around by an ugly, overweight cheerleader? Have you ever met one? I haven't. It's the only real thing that bothers me. 

Needless to say, I'm looking forward to more antics. Season One only just ended, and you can catch all the re-runs (I suggest you do!). Season Two will greet us in 2012.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Is Kitty Forman Immortal?

I've seen every episode of That 70's Show more times then I care to admit. It's a great show, and it still makes me laugh.



However, today I noticed something I never paid attention to before.

Actor boo-boo's. Today was a good one! Unfortunately I was in the middle of mundane domestic chores and thus did not catch the entire episode to be able to tell you all exactly which one it was. I simply remember the one scene that caught my attention:

Kitty is cooking up mushrooms and green bell peppers in a pan . . and you can hear the sizzle sound. But amazingly -- she has her hand directly on the pan instead of using the handle. Woah! Either she's super-human, or the sizzle-sound was just added in. Or she has no feeling in her hand, and that sizzle was her flesh slowly sauteing away.

I consider that a heck of a blunder, personally.I will definitely be keeping an eye out for more 70's Show Goofs and filling them in right here.

(Example: Anyone notice the weirdness in the years? It's like the crew didn't graduate until they were 20. eh?)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

XBox 360 Avatar Fun

One of my favorite things about XBox Live has to be the avatars. They're fun and quirky and you can buy lots of goodies to dress them up with (not that I do. I'm cheap. Whatev).

I used to change my avatar constantly, about as much as my hair color changed (which was A LOT). But since getting pregnant, I got super lazy. Until recently.


Now my avatar looks just like me, and almost as pregnant as I do!

Not that my avatar is the most original thing on XBox Live. . . . . . . . . One of the big things now is that a lot of celebrities are being Avatar'd. Not only celebs, but some of the most amusing Avatars are the politician look-alikes (check some out here).

I would love to see other creative Avatars, if anyone has any, or you can just show off your own look-alike Avie.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Easter Eggs: Star Wars

 Hi there! 

The name's Alex. I'm the author of Memoirs of a Fanboy. I'm also the newest co-contributor for Spoiler Whore! 

   (Yes, I am wearing a Jayne shirt and proud of it!) 

I'll be starting an ongoing segment that highlights what we like to call in the world of geeks, Easter Eggs. These focal points of nerdy obsession typically come in the form of quick cameos, vague shout outs, or blink-and-you'll-miss-it crossovers between franchises.  

For the first in the Easter Egg segment I'll be revealing the top easter eggs from a very popular franchise that just so happens to also be one of my favorites; Star Wars!

So, without further adieu, here they are; the Top Star Wars Easter Eggs:


E.T. in The Phantom Menace: 

One of the more well known Easter Eggs in Star Wars was the addition of a trio of aliens who just so happen to also appear in a famous Stephen Speilburg film. 

Upon arriving upon Coruscant these extraterrestrials can be seen in the Senate Rotunda while Queen Amidala is pleading her case. 



Lucas & Family Hit Up the Opera House: 

In Revenge of the Sith, you can actually see quick cameo appearances of none other then George Lucas and his family. Three of the four members of his family are seen in opera house visited by Anakin and Palpatine right before Anakin turns to enter the box where Palpatine and his entourage are watching the show. 

Here we see George speaking with his daughter Katie Lucas. Katie has gone on to write multiple episodes for the Star Wars spin-off cartoon, The Clone Wars. 

George's eldest daughter Amanda speaking with her real-life boyfriend.

George's son Jett gets the most screen time as Jedi Youngling Zett Jukassa who is gunned down upon the initiation of Order 66. 



The Outlander in Mos Eisley: 

For fans of the Star Wars Expanded Universe of novels, comics and video games, The Outrider may be familiar to you. 

Introduced in the popular Shadows of the Empire multimedia project from back in 96', The Outrider was a                            Millenium Falcon stand in piloted by Dash Rendar who was a stand in for Han Solo while he was frozen in carbonite. Creative no? When the Special Additions of the Original Trilogy were released, the Outrider was added as a sweet little tidbit, taking off over Mos Eisley Space Port. It can be seen from behind in the upper left corner. 



 THX-1138: George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars, gave the name THX-1138 to his very first movie that he made in film school. While the movie itself never surmounted to much attention, it has become one of the most prolific easter eggs, to have the name of this film, or more commonly the numbers '1138' hidden in a movie. 

Here's where you can see the numbers in each of the six Star Wars movies:

-Ep. 1: 1138 is the designation given to the Battle Droid knocked over by Jar Jar after the Droid Control Ship is destroyed. 
-Ep. 2: 1138 can be seen on the back of a clone trooper's helmet when Mace Windu orders the army to land in an assembly area. 
-Ep 3: Though not directly in the film, entering 1138 in the DVD menu for Revenge of the Sith while highlighting the THX logo will result in the viewing of 'Hip Hop Yoda'. Go, try it. Believe me, it works. 
-Ep 4: Chewie is said to have been transferred to "...cell block 1138..."
-Ep 5: The Rebel General on Hoth, Rieekan, orders Rouges 10 and 11 to section 3-8
-Ep 6: Although its nearly impossible to see in the film, the side of the helmet Leia uses to enter into Jabba's Palace has 1138 etched into it. 

Keep on the lookout for my next Easter Eggs article; Star Trek!

Any Easter Eggs I failed to mention? Sound off in the comments below! 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Pawn Queens: Hand Over Your Crown


(co-contributor: Desi)

Pawn Queens on TLC promised to be a twist from our beloved Pawn Stars (which I love!!), debuting the work lives of two women who own and run a pawn shop that caters mostly to the feminine crowd. I thought, hey -- this could be cool. The previews show you a couple feisty women who seem to have what they need for the business.

So I watched. And by the end of the episode, I was cursing at the television. I've probably never seen worse business sense debuted on TV in my life. The women are too emotional for the game, first of all. Their poor business partners are running around in the background, but they seem far more capable and level-headed. And I'm sorry, the stuff they buy? I'm bored to death. Nothing of historical value -- nothing even interesting.

And they keep running out of money! What kind of business IS this?! You are supposed to "buy" and "loan" -- and they didn't have enough cash to buy a $3,000 original 1959 Barbie. It was pathetic. That dear woman had to wait HOURS for her money. I would have walked out, I'm sorry.

To be honest, I didn't snap until they lost and re-found a woman's ring that they had been holding as collateral. This poor woman looked pretty upset. It wasn't in their safe or deposit box, so they go out and try to buy her a new ring. And what happens? The jeweler tells them he has -- because they brought it to him to refinish.

I think this show is going to take a nosedive, quickly. And their business is going to end up shutting down. It sucks, in my opinion, and I'm not the only one.

So, two thumbs down for Pawn Queens.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Let Me Hear You SCREAM



(co contributor post: Desi)

Personally, I nearly leapt out of my seat when I saw a television premiere for Scream 4. It was a shock, especially since I usually know what movies are coming out before they even start filming. Don't worry, my husband was shaking his head at me too. But I am genuinely excited! My favorite slasher series continues! WITH original characters/actors. YAY! ( I still miss Jamie Kennedy *sad face*)

That preview sent me back to my child hood. No lie. The scream mask was a huge hit for a number of Halloweens and I, naturally, owned the costume. So during the summer, instead of sitting inside watching MTV (a real 12 y/o thing to do back then), my friends and I ran around outside taking turns terrorizing each other with the Scream costume around my mothers property. I won't lie, there were moments of genuine terror -- especially if you tend to watch movies so much you kind of forget where you are. And when you play the Scream killer, you have to BE the Scream killer. That meant showing up unexpectedly and getting around ninja style. Sometimes we had to stop when someone got too freaked out. I know pre-teens and teens today are thinking that was a real loser activity. Well, bite me. My other outdoor activity consisted of brilliant treasure hunts concocted by yours truly. I was the Queen of imagination, and the other kids loved it, so nyeh.

Anyway, this Friday, April 15th -- Scream 4 hits theaters (I should point out that Scream 3 was released in 2000!) Neve Campbell, David Arquette, Courtney Coz-Arquette, director Wes Craven -- all good things! I'm hoping that for a birthday gift I am going to be able to go. If not......well, I will make another sad face.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Teen Mom Reality Check


(Co-Contributor post: Desi)

I've found myself addicted to teenage drama on television. Is it perhaps because I lacked drama as a teen myself (good decade ago now)? Or because I'm both amazed and disgusted by the way media manipulates the youth of today? I realize the show was designed (or so they say) originally to raise awareness about the difficulties teen moms/dads face in real life. In my humble, and well educated, opinion -- what they are really telling teens is "Hey look, get pregnant and you can get on TV and be famous and get lots of money."

Are you with me? Seriously? I've even gotten into this discussion going through the line at Publix. I bought a magazine with an article about the show (because I study whatever I find to be obscure), and the bagger (an older man, who I find always have the GREATEST stories and jokes) asked what it was about. So the cashier started talking about how her teen daughter was watching it and that she did not agree with the message being sent. Well, I just had to go off on this one. And I did. They agreed, and that sweet old man even put in his few cents "Well, as guys we ARE the cause. We're saying, "C'mon baby..". I hope to see him next time I'm in there. His honesty was refreshing.

I'm sure a teenager with enough confidence in herself and enough common sense can see past the glamor the show represents and realize that these girls are going through hell, on and off camera.

I had my daughter at 19. It was not easy at that age, and I could not imagine having to quit high school to do it. I wouldn't have gotten my three scholarships to college. I wouldn't have been top of my class and valedictorian, and honestly I wouldn't want to give up any of those things. I love my daughter, but I know better choices could have been made and that she deserved better of me. I regret that I had to quit college, and when I finally went back.. I got a degree I don't even want. I hate my that fact that I have a job and not a career. I can admit that, knowing now that regardless of what sacrifices I've made...I am the best mother my daughter could have and she is the most amazing little girl she could be.

Could these televised teen moms say the same? I think our youth need real role models, not peers getting rewarded for bad decisions. If you've been watching, you probably know that Janelle is my target example and has been from the first moment I caught the show at random. You may have seen her on the news recently for her current arrest.

Reality? Her son will never be able to live down his mother's past, present, and possibly negative future. There are far bigger things here then just our own selfish entertainment.

We are a half hour in to the season finale. Watch on, friends.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Due Date


My house has been passing around bronchitis this entire month so far, which is so painful it's fairly reminiscent of that one time I tried to watch Batman and Robin the entire way through. Being sick however does occasionally give that little extra time that I would have used doing laundry, and let's me apply it to something more productive, like catching up on new releases.

I cannot be the only one who is grateful daily for the triumphant return of Robert Downey Jr. Cause seriously, it's almost like all that raw, beautiful talent turned off during his arrests and substance abuse issues, and then miraculously some switch turned back on and screamed, "I am Iron Man!" and the rest - they say - is history.

Due Date is just another hilariously amazing performance that Robert Downey Jr can add to his resume. You know the one he shows people not to GET jobs anymore, but instead to add some zeros to his paychecks.

Zach Galifianakis of course had me back when The Hangover came out. We even went and saw that movie in theatre, which shows some true belief considering we so rarely get to the theatre these days. Especially since Century theater once tried to card me during the latest installment of Saw. Seriously. 26 years old doesn't even come CLOSE to looking under 18.

There's something about Zach Galifianakis that reminds me of Jim Carrey. They're humor is completely different mind you, but about seventy percent of the movies they're in you're thinking, "Wow, that was so real, I wonder if it was totally improv." That's how most of Due Date was for me. Moments where I expect cast and crew had a hard time keeping straight faces just to get through the take. Which is why I was totally bummed when our Redbox copy of the flick didn't come with any special features - cause I was so hoping for a sweet gag reel.

Due Date is wickedly inappropriate and amusing as hell. There are moments when you're laughing hysterically, and others where you're oddly on the verge of tears. And then something else horrible will happen and you'll get over it.

While we haven't officially set up any general rating system here at Spoiler Whore, I can say for myself that we'll soon be adding this to our permanent collection.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Sims Medieval Launched!


Okay, I meant to mention this one sooner. But, hey.. it was only released just today! And I promise this will be my last Sims post for a while. I imagine you've seen the commercials on television. You haven't? Well, I recommend you watch more television. The game is being promoted by Donald Faison. I KNOW! What is that all about? I'm sure they have their reason. Plus, he pulls off the crown really well.

Oh, the game. Right. Yes. The Sims Medieval is basically The Sims set back in the age of knights and ladies. As if Sim modders didn't already accomplish this a thousand times over themselves with in game modifications (holla!). Needless to say, I'm still excited and I'm still going to buy it. But I can't right now. So if anyone can comment and tell us how it is, PLEASE do?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Hunger Games goes Cinema!

If you are a fan of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games series, then you should be jumping up and down with delightful happy right now. Like many good books, The Hunger Games will be hitting the big screen, and they are starting to recruit the cast:



I'm expecting excellence! When you are given such an original idea with fantastic characters and a mind blowing plot . . how do you mess that up? I guess we'll find out. Said to release on March 23, 2012, the movie is being directed by Gary Ross -- who you may better know for his work on Seabiscuit or Pleasantville (or maybe you don't know him at all).

In case you haven't read or even heard of The Hunger Games, I recommend you read up in summary here. It's fantastic, so I suggest anyone read the book before seeing the movie.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

What's Your Guilty Pleasure Show?

We all have at least one.

Those shows that you watch religiously but probably shouldn't. The train wreck reality television that drags you in and makes you say, "People like this exist!? It's fascinating and horrifying at the same time!"

My go to guilty pleasure show used to be Wife Swap. Two women would switch places and live each others lives. They had to abide by the other wife's schedule, home life, jobs, and rules . . . and then week two they got to switch it up and make changes.

Because the producers would purposely pick polar opposites to switch places, it was a recipe for perfect disaster. Take that high class New York "real" housewife and put her in the boondocks where she has to chop wood. Better yet, take a ministers wife and mix her up with a lady married to someone who hosts a talk radio show spreading the word on atheism.

After too many episodes I started having panic attacks while watching.

My newest addiction is the insanity of Toddlers & Tiaras. Cause what could honestly be bad about taking three year old, spray tanning them, putting them in short dresses (that cost thousands of dollars), giving them fake eye lashes, fake nails, fake hair, fake teeth and parading them on stage to be judged on their perfection?

I was going to make a list of my favourite quotes from the show, but honestly, someone else beat me to the punch.

So name your favourite guilty pleasure...

Jersey Shore? Real Housewives? Bridezillas?

We all have one.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Dragon Age: Redemption

Since our newest contributor, Moxie, posted about the release of Dragon Age II (comes out today), I thought I'd remind everyone (and fill in those who are unaware) about Dragon Age: Redemption a web series based on the video games. And since it's a web series, of course the amazing Felicia Day is a big part of it!

The series is due to come out this summer, but until then check out the teaser below:

Monday, March 7, 2011

Dragon Age II Tomorrow!


In case you didn't know, Bioware's Dragon Age II is released tomorrow in North America! YAY!! If you're a dork like me, you've pre-ordered and will be skipping ahead of lines to get your stuff (super yay!). If you weren't aware, you should be as excited as the rest of us. Dragon Age II will extend the story from Dragon Age: Origins and will include a new city called Kirkwall, as well as a new dialogue wheel that will help you determine your dialogue choices (whether they will lead to good or bad relationships). While the first Dragon Age ran through about a two year time span, the second will go over a decade and all decisions made will effect future events (as it should be).

XBox Magazine gave it a 9/10 and the demo was hardly enough to appease me. Must give Bioware thumbs up on my most favorite series of Single Player RPG games, ever!

I'll brag about how much I love it after I pick it up and dive in.

UPDATE: Status = undetermined. I enjoy how the plot changes, and that the fighting is far more intense... but still not suuure.. hm...

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Dark Knight Rises (Next Year, MAYBE)

(Another co-contributor post by Desi/Moxie)

If you don't know me, I'm one of those people that will know about and obsess over a movie two years before it's released. Like this one. Why? It's BATMAN!!! Batman has been my favorite superhero since I could freaking say Batman. And movies, well..movies are my life. Ask anyone that's had to put up with me in real life. I think it was because my mother wanted me out of her hair, and would go to Blockbuster every day and get me like 3 movies at a time -- until I ran out of good stuff to watch. And then I got HBO in my room. Needless to say, I have issues.

Speaking of issues, I'm excited about another Batman movie. I'm not excited about some of the casting choices. I have always, always hated Christian Bale as Batman, but I can't do anything about it. His voice makes me want to eat nails. But what is my real problem with casting; Anne Hathaway. What.. the... great Batmobile is this about?! (or better yet "Holy Crapshack, Batman!"). Anne Hathaway is NO Selina Kyle (Catwoman, for those who are unaware). If she pulls it off, then more power to her, but right now I just don't see it. She's too freaking gOoFy, which is one of my favorite things about her. I loved her in The Devil Wears Prada. I adored her in The Princess Diaries and I rooted for her in Bride Wars. She freaked me out a little in Alice in Wonderland, but I digress (she has plenty of other films under her belt, but this post isn't about her).

That's enough about the casting negatives, how about the positives? I have one big one.

Gary Oldman. Again. YES! Let's do the happy jig! I love me some Gary Oldman (Air Force One! - Fifth Element - Harry Freaking Potter Movies! and more!). And then we have classics, like Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman. Hurrah!

And where am I as far as having Tom Hardy as Bane? I think there is potential, but I will be watching you, Tom Hardy, with my arms crossed and eyes narrowed. Don't you dare disappoint.

Rumors also include Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Like) and Marion Cotillard (Eh).

If you don't believe me, see the full cast & crew as well as access movie information here, at IMDB.com. Movie is expected to be out in 2012.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Sims Evolution (PC)

Will Wright was a man with a dream. A dream to make a video game of life-simulation so awesome, that within a month of release 6.3 million copies would be floating around the world by Sim-lovers who were completely hooked. It worked, and we thank him for it even today.


The Sims, published by EA in February of 2000, became the best-selling video game in history and has won several awards, including "Game of the Year". My memory of the initial release was spending 13 hours at a time playing. I was in junior high, so this was not good. From the minute I got home until 2 or 3 in the morning I was up playing this game. Not only was it addicting in itself, but the original Sims was followed by seven expansion packs: Livin' Large, House Party, Hot Date, Vacation, Unleashed, Superstar, and Makin' Magic. Cost-wise, this series is a little over the top, but for information sake, I just picked up the original Sims with two expansions for $1.04 on Ebay, with $3.00 shipping (sweet!).

But wait, there's more:

The Sims 2 was released in 2004 ,and they promised us a real world. In my opinion, they totally delivered. Not only were the graphics way better then The Sims, but the 3D world was a fantastic addition. The Sims themselves became more versatile and customizable then ever before. A huge bonus was these Sims pass through 6 life stages! The babies actually grow up and become old people eventually! That was unheard of in the original game. Like it's predecessor, it also won Best Game of the Year and sold a record 1 million copies in the first week (this has been surpassed -- pretty sure Call of Duty blew everything out of the water). To be honest, I was stubborn about it at first. I was still loyal to the original Sims -- but then they slap you with expansion packs again! 8 of them, to be exact: University, Nightlife, Open for Business, Pets, Seasons, Bon Voyage, Freetime, and Apartment Life. They also created 9 Stuff packs,which are basically add-ons to the game, like additional clothing and furniture. Speaking of which... IKEA Stuff, really? I never used anything from it -- ugly crap. So sorry for buying that one. I think Nightlife is one of those must-have expansions.. because of the vampires. Who doesn't love vampires nowadays?

Feeling pretty high and mighty at this point, Maxis (developers) decided it was time to kick it up a notch.


I'm sorry. I was initially very excited, but found The Sims 3 to be nothing more then an Epic Fail in my book. It's actually TOO much. There is too much game here! They created an open world, but that didn't turn out so well. It's too busy, too much going on. I can't stand it, and neither can my graphics card. When they released this one in 2009, I was all over it. Even got the Collector's Edition (still use the green 4 GB USB though). I played about an hour before it crashed on me the first time -- and the sad part was that I wasn't really upset about it. I hate it even now, with the disc sitting right in front of me. The Sims are ugly as heck, too. They continue to make more stuff for it, with 3 expansion packs (World Adventures, Ambitions, and Late Night) and 3 stuff packs.

Overall, the Sims 2 gets my vote. Cost-wise, it's still up there.. but that's why eBay is our friend. Patches have all been released, so it's not buggy, and the internet is chalk full of gamer-made content to beef up your play. If you've played, then right on, my friend! If not... what the hell is wrong with you!? Even hard-core sharp-shoot gamers should be able to appreciate the Sims environment. You make the game, that's the beauty of it. If I wanna drown my Sim, I'm gonna do it! If I want to create an army of tiny vampire children, I will! Want to see some aliens? So be it! If you haven't seen your Sim electro-cuted or ravaged by cockroaches, then you ain't doin' it right.

Sim-on, people, Sim-on!

Note: For additional hours of Sim-like enjoyment, I know some sweet cheat codes.

(How's that for an initial co-contributor post? :) )

Monday, January 10, 2011

You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry

Dear Eric Bana,

I was finally able to stomach the idea of sitting down and watching The Time Traveler's Wife. You know why it took me so long, I know why it took me so long. Hulk. Let's face it, the only reason I even bothered to watch Troy was because of Brad Pitt, not you. And the fact that I'm a sucker for Greek Mythology, so I already knew what was going to happen to your character, and I thought it was kind of funny. Why? Hulk.

But after watching The Time Travelers Wife, I have come to a very important decision. I am going to forgive you for Hulk.


So long as you promise to never again portray a Marvel character ever, ever again.

Sincerely,

Untypically Jia

PS: I'm totally serious. Just ask me if I've watched any Kirsten Dunst movies lately.