Tom Waits is quite a character, with a voice that makes you want to listen intently to every tale he has to tell and a face that tells a whole 'nother story of its own.
When Tom Waits talks he generally has some pretty interesting stuff to say, and one particularly interesting interview by Chris Roberts in 1988 was chosen to receive the Blank On Blank animated treatment.
The PBS series Blank On Blank features animated versions of lost interviews with famous faces such as Hunter S. Thompson, Roger Ebert and Joni Mitchell, just to name a few, so Tom is truly in good company!
Horror movies center around death, and whether they feature the straightforward slaughtering of people by a slasher, or people being slowly driven to death's door by a haunting, horror flicks are all about the kills.
Since characters drop like flies in horror movies the kills can become extremely repetitive and lose their cringeworthiness, so including creative kills can really make your film stand out. (Video contains NSFW material)
Bloody Disgusting has gathered a gruesome assortment of disturbingly memorable kills from horror flicks, omitting the Final Destination series altogether because they're full of unique kills. It's just the thing to get you in the mood for a Halloween horror movie marathon!
According to scientific research we've been pooping all wrong, sitting on the toilet like we're sitting on an easy chair rather than squatting like we're supposed to, which is where the Squatty Potty comes in.
The Squatty Potty is supposed to help us eliminate more solid waste by raising our feet up while we go, and whether their claims are true or not their commercial definitely caught my attention!
The X-Men started out as a band of mutant misfits akin to those involved in the counter-culture movements in the 1960s- a disenfranchised group of teen mutants looking for a little acceptance in a world that both feared and hated them.
That's why the fluid nature of the group's lineup makes sense, since there will always be a new batch of teens manifesting powers and looking for a little guidance at Professor Xavier's School For Gifted Youngsters.
But it's really hard to keep track of all the changes when various characters have been coming and going for over fifty years.
Illustrator Ed Piskor created this handy visual guide to help us keep track of how the X-Men lineup has changed over the years, with each row representing a decade in X-Men history, starting in the 60s and running through the 90s. Looks like you've got one and a half more to go Ed!
Matt wants to help you spread that feeling of nostalgia you once had when you unwrapped a classic console game on Christmas morning with his line of old school video game inspired shirts and matching Christmas cards.
With pixel art straight from classic games like Alex Kidd In Miracle World, The Legend Of Zelda, Bubble Bobble and many more, Retro Review has created a great gift package for all the gamers on your list.
These are the gifts for gamers that keep on giving, the t-shirts (or sweatshirts) and matching cards that will make your geeky friends and family members say "Ho ho ho! What a great idea!" when they unwrap them on Christmas day. But don't delay- the 12 Games Of Christmas project ends on November 2nd!
Before he was the biggest competitor in the ring the man who would be known as André the Giant was simply André René Roussimoff, dapper man about town who made lifting cars look easy.
Okay, so André was never really "average", but before he became a household name thanks to his performance as "The Giant" in the WWF André was a young, and much leaner, man from Grenoble, France looking to use his massive size to his advantage in the ring.
André was 6 foot 10 inches tall by age 18, so the giant nickname came naturally, but what's surprising is how handsome he was in his younger years, he could have been a movie star!
Oh wait, he was a movie star thanks to appearances in The Princess Bride and Micki & Maude, I guess André's dreams of stardom were achieved after all!
The biggest Comic Con of all is happening this weekend in New York! And since you’re not there, You’ll want to take a peek at the best cosplayers anyway. Geeks Are Sexy has a correspondent, Rich from Aggressive Comix, sending in photographs by the dozens. The first gallery of cosplayers, taken on Friday, is up now.
There will be more pictures from tomorrow and Sunday, so check back at Geeks Are Sexy for more to come.
The recent release of the survival horror game Until Dawn has inspired some couch conversation about what makes a horror themed video game good, and which horror game elements get old really fast.
In this case the characters discussing the dilemma are Freddy the animatronic bear from Five Nights At Freddy's, Slenderman from Creepy Pasta fame (who also has his own game), and a longhaired dude named Davis, so you know the argument is about to get serious...ly nerdy.
When the ninja movie trend hit theaters back in the 1980s a slew of action flicks were released that featured a non-Japanese fighter trained in the ways of Ninjutsu, the most shadowy of all martial arts.
Viewers had always assumed only Japanese people could be trained in the ways of the ninja, but these movies made us believe that with intense training and a heart full of revenge any of us could become a ninja too.
The intense ninja training didn't amount to a hill of shuriken for me, but a few lucky characters got to slip on the hood and katana and live out their dreams of being a white ninja, letting us watch while they lived out their shinobi dreams.
Will Varner’s ideas really work! A Gungan like Jar Jar Binks would naturally relate to life as a mermaid. And, as Varner explains, “Just think: Jar Jar Binks with the voice of a siren!” He’s almost there on his own. But I doubt that Jar Jar would be able to woo Prince Eric as effectively as Ariel.
It's nice to have someone sing you to sleep before bed, but if the singer is the nightmare inducer himself Freddy Krueger you're probably better off staying awake or you'll never wake up again!
Freddy's melted face is terrifying to behold even in puppet form, but, as Mario of Glove and Boots discovered, he does have one heck of a singing voice when he belts out the twilight themed tune "Dream A Little Dream Of Me".
Cardboard is truly a maker's best friend because it's cheap, easy to find in large quantities and the perfect medium for making models of your creation.
From pattern making to prototyping to building the project itself, cardboard is an ultimate, and totally eco-friendly, way to bring your ideas to life.
This year's World Maker Faire New York featured some outstanding cardboard creations, including fully functional pinball machines, a really cool dinosaur costume and a giant bear's head for attendees to use as their cubhouse.
A virtual world that resembles the real world gets boring after a while. I love it when someone comes up with a strange and different mod for the Grand Theft Auto universe. BlackSmoke Billy built a ramp on the front of a big rig tractor to see what would happen.
Censorship is supposed to protect viewers from being exposed to things like nudity, gore, explicit language and disturbing situations, basically all the things viewers usually want in movies or TV shows.
That's why creators are constantly battling the censors to keep their shows intact, censor despised content and all, and their struggle sometimes forces creators to flat out lie about what's happening on the screen.
Censors hate blood, and they actively force filmmakers to remove any trace of blood from their trailers, but back in 1980 Stanley Kubrick got away with telling the censors that his iconic blood flood in The Shining was really just "rusty water".
Because of Kubrick's lie the trailer, complete with that disturbing shot of the "rusty water" flooding towards the camera, briefly made it to theaters before being pulled by the MPAA.
Are you wondering why Fonzie was featured in the lead image? Believe it or not, Happy Days also had trouble with the censors about one issue- Fonzie's leather jacket.
The Fonz looked like a total Potsie without his leather jacket, but censors claimed only criminals wear a leather jacket when they're not riding their bike, so show creator Garry Marshall started working a motorcycle into every scene.
Soon, the Fire Department of New York City will celebrate its 150th anniversary. To mark the occasion, it will display and auction off at the local Comic Con 10 bespoke firefighting helmets that look like Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow, and other Marvel superheroes. The New York Daily News reports:
Created just for New York Comic Con, the superhero helmets were designed by the industry’s top comic book artists, including Joe Quesada, Marvel’s Chief Creative Officer, Damion Scott, Kaare Andrews and Walt Simonson.
Quesada was also behind “Heroes,” a 2011 comic paying tribute to the victims and heroes of Sept. 11. […]
All proceeds from the sales will go to the FDNY Foundation, which provides awareness and outreach for the public, training and support for the department’s different squads and technology and equipment for stations.
WatchMojo put together a nice list of their picks for Top 10 Secret Levels In Video Games to put you in a nostalgiac mood.
From Super Mario World's fabled Star Road to the ridiculous Secret Cow Level in Diablo II, these are levels that "are hidden and must be found by completing certain objectives or searching certain areas of a game", a gamer's ultimate prize for playing.
In a traditional tabletop role-playing game, the players' imaginations make an adventure an immersive experience. I've seen some game masters use audio soundtracks to enhance this experience. Here's a new sensory tool to make traditional RPGs even more realistic: scents for particular scenarios.
Jennifer Howlett is the founder of Adventure Scents, a line of aromatic beads carefully selected to reflect common role-playing game situations. They include Horse Stables, Rowdy Tavern, Fishing Docks, Pirate Ship, Enchanted Forest, Dusty Library, Moldy Crypt, Roman Bathhouse, and Fetid Swamp.
Which one should you choose? Howlett makes suggestions with the Scent-O-Matic--an interactive tool that helps game masters select scents by game, fantasy setting, entertainment franchise, and location.
This is about as silly as it gets, and that’s what the internet is made for. Mandatory wrote up what happened in season five of The Walking Dead, made it rhyme, and set it to the music of the opening theme from Cheers. Yes, they did.
Besides being a ridiculous way to present the information, it may remind fans of all that went on last year, leading up to the premiere episode of season six of The Walking Dead this Sunday night. -Thanks, Daniel!
I'm not a very big fan of the Harry Potter franchise, and even though I've seen every movie I don't plan on reading any of the books, so I'm left with many questions that may or may not be explained in the books.
There's one main question that has bothered me since the first film- why do the Hogwarts crew care so much about staying hidden from Muggles?
Star Wars: where dreams come true. Now that Disney owns the Star Wars franchise, is it really so far-fetched to imagine them sliding in some of their more popular tropes into the seventh episode of the movie series?
Some of it doesn’t take much of a stretch, like Mufasa as Darth Vader. That's a given. But Peter Pan with a light saber? Pinocchio as a hologram? You may have to watch twice to catch all the weirdness in this mashup from PistolShrimps. -via Geeks Are Sexy
Every journey must begin and end, and the narrative structure of a film makes the beginning and end of the journey extremely important, which thereby makes the opening and closing two of the most important shots in the entire film.
Sara Goetter participated in 24 Hour Comics Day and produced a story about two geeky girls who find each other in 7th grade. They are both going through the agony of puberty: Joanna is short, a bit overweight, and has a volatile temper, while Penny has acne and a unibrow and suffers from crippling shyness. They become friends over their shared love of anime. The 18-page story will remind you of the horribly awkward process of growing up, when making friends was difficult but having friends was crucial.
Goetter says these characters will return in a new strip she’s developing. I’ll look forward to seeing more of them. -via Metafilter
If you're gonna make hyper realistic wax sculptures of people you might as well use some of the most recognizable and beloved people, with those famous faces we love, as your inspiration.
Master sculptor Trevor Grove has a knack for capturing both the look and personality of each person he sculpts, and he obviously has really good taste because he chose both Tom Waits and Eddie Munster as his subjects!
He's also really good at sculpting amazing likenesses in small 1/6 scale, like this head for the Bill Murray- Actor action figure the world of geeky toys needs NAO!
The making of the movie The Martian seems almost like a fairy tale, or more specifically, a Horatio Alger-type success story. Computer programmer Andy Weir wrote a story about Mars in blog posts over three years, which then became a book, which was picked up by Hollywood and made into a critically-acclaimed movie directed by Ridley Scott with help from NASA. James Green, director of NASA’s Planetary Sciences Division, was tremendously excited when Scott wanted to speak to him about NASA’s help for the movie The Martian. The conversation led to a tour of NASA’s Johnson Space Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and then more.
Beyond tours, NASA gave the filmmakers hundreds of photos—of Mars, of what's on a screen when scientists are commanding a satellite orbiting the planet, and of the layout of the control center. Green weighed in on what the Hermes—the spacecraft used by the Ares III crew in the film to travel between Mars and Earth—would look like. (The filmmakers went through two versions before settling on a third, which uses ion engines to get to our red neighbor.) He also read the script, jotting down notes and comments that he went over with Max when he came to NASA. Most of Green's comments “were really all about how to make the movie use some of the latest information about Mars,” he says. In most cases, though, the filmmakers decided to stick with what was in the book, which was fine with Green: “It’s cleaner. It’s easier. It is something they can fall back on,” he says.
Dr. Green spoke with mental_floss about the ways NASA helped to tweak the screenplay to make The Martian as realistic as cinematically possible. The article about the collaboration contains no spoilers, as far as I can tell.
Animators have always used photo reference and models to help them create character designs and make the character's motion look as realistic and fluid as possible, but Disney took it to a whole other level.
Their character performances are top notch, their human character designs are so believable we feel like we know them in real life, all thanks to their crafty methods of using live-action reference.
Disney animators used Kathryn Beaumont as their Alice in every way, since she also voiced the character and obviously provided inspiration for many of Alice's facial expressions as well.
The clip above shows how they turned a small acted out segment into an iconic scene from Alice In Wonderland, and below we see how Alice's character design was created by drawing over photographic reference of Kathryn, to keep proportions correct and make her more believable.
It may look like cheating, but when there are tens of thousands of frames of character animation to be drawn, inked, painted and filmed for the movie animators need all the help they can get!
The voyages of the Starship Enterprise are logged via stardates, and these seemingly insignificant set of numbers are meant to mark the episode's place in the series' timeline.
They sound like serious business, but how much thought and effort is put into continuity in the Star Trek series' in terms of stardates?
Well, as Chris Higgins of mental_floss discovered, the stardate system used in the original Star Trek series was "totally bogus" by design. Here's a snippet from the series bible:
Pick any combination of four numbers plus a percentage point [ed. note: tenths digit], use it as your story's stardate. For example, 1313.5 is twelve o'clock noon of one day and 1314.5 would be noon of the next day. Each percentage point is roughly equivalent to one-tenth of one day. The progression of stardates in your script should remain constant but don't worry about whether or not there is a progression from other scripts. Stardates are a mathematical formula which varies depending on location in the galaxy, velocity of travel, and other factors, can vary widely from episode to episode.
However, the writers and directors of Star Trek: The Next Generation were given an updated system that actually worked, and with the updated system we discover that one season of the show amounts to 1,000 days:
A stardate is a five-digit number followed by a decimal point and one more digit. Example: "41254.7." The first two digits of the stardate are always "41." The 4 stands for 24th century, the 1 indicates first season. The additional three leading digits will progress unevenly during the course of the season from 000 to 999. The digit following the decimal point is generally regarded as a day counter.
Of course they still goofed here and there, but that's a way better system than "pick four random numbers and a percentage point".
When the super saiyan slugfest known as Dragon Ball Z hit the airwaves some people found the fighting too over the top and the lack of character development disturbing.
But as the show got going and proved it was about more than people beating each other up anime fans of all kinds started going along for the ride.
With an epic 291 episodes and dozens of characters getting in to DBZ can be quite a chore, and even those who've seen every episode have probably noticed some inconsistencies and errors.
Things like fluctuations in animation quality, sudden character hair and wardrobe changes, and a character's disappearance from the series made viewers feel like their eyes were playing tricks on them.
But these are just part of Dragon Ball Z's charm, and if the creator and writer of the manga Akira Toriyama couldn't keep track of all the facts during it's creation we never stood a chance!
Frank Herbert's Dune is one of the most iconic science fiction series of all time, and yet for some reason the series has never received the animated series adaptation it deserves.
So far the book series has received a movie adaptation directed by David Lynch that came out in 1984, followed by two different miniseries covering the first three books that aired on the Sci-Fi channel in 2000 and 2003. But where's the cartoon?
Yes, this is Superman dancing with a woman dressed as Spider-Man in a Bollywood production number. It’s another of the many unauthorized copies of blockbuster movies that were made in countries around the world in order to cash in on a popular franchise. Without the royalties, of course.
This list from Screen Rant includes the famous Japanese Spider-Man TV series and the Turkish Star Trek movie. Most of these are based on comic book superheroes, but not all of them. Some are even supposed to be comedies, and the others… well, they are worth a laugh, too. -via Geeks Are Sexy