Monday, April 28, 2008

Master of Fine Arts Degree

This is an ok degree which I have now, except it's a real gyp that I can't add anything to what people call me. Like if I got an MD whenever telemarketers asked for Mr. Shay-heen I could angrily say that's DR. SHAH-heen, thank you, and I'll take eight life insurance policies please. Also, they always say that you can get a job teaching college with an MFA but that is a total lie. You need like three award winning books before that happens. In conclusion if anybody needs to know anything about poetry feel free to ask me, because for some reason the University of Houston thinks I am a master at it.


The World Is Not Enough

This is the third Bond movie Pierce Brosnan made, and in my opinion the best, although in everybody else's opinion it is the worst. I guess there are a couple problems. One, it is trying to be a bit darker, kind of like why people liked Casino Royale (but didn't like the Timothy Dalton ones?), but Bond says these horrible corny puns like every other line, and Two, Denise Richards is fucking terrible in it, and I mean the worst. I know the movie is ridiculous with the flying helicopters with buzz saws on them, but because Pierce Brosnan is acting well it works, but every time she opens her mouth (and she's a nuclear physicist, by the by), I just remember how stupid the whole fiasco is. Oh well, at least it has some great action scenes which is all you need from these movies in the end.


(Also, sorry for not posting last week, but I had to defend my thesis so I was a little busy. But now I'm done so everybody can call me Master Glenn now.)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

All Good Things...

This is the series finale of Star Trek: The Next Generation, so don't worry about me reviewing any more episodes of this show. This is one of the best finales ever made, and one of the best TNG episodes. The plot is tough to explain, but basically Picard is shifting through time thanks to Q and must save mankind from being wiped from existence. Anyway, it's a typical Star Trek plot, but what is great is the way that the whole thing ties back to the first episode of TNG, Encounter At Farpoint, when Q told Picard humanity was on trial, and also every character gets their own great moment. Maybe that's why the TNG movies sucked - they were basically the Picard and Data show, and we had already had excellent closure with this episode.


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Odelay by Beck

I think that after Loser hit everybody thought Beck was going to be a one hit wonder kind of person, but then when this great album came out people had to collectively eat crow or something. While Mellow Gold was acoustic and folksy, with only a little bit of sampling going on, Odelay was produced by the Dust Brothers, of Paul's Boutique fame. So this album is a lot more electronic, sampley, and dancey. It loses steam for me after track 8 or so, but having eight solid tracks in a row ain't no slouch. Click on these links!

(Also, I used to think it was a bale of hay jumping over that hurdle, but apparently it's a weird dog or something)


Life Cereal

I have no idea why Life cereal is called Life. Is it because it is so good that we must devote our entire lives to eating it? Well, I think it's a pretty decent cereal, but it's not that great, so calling your cereal "Life" is pretty pretentious, Quaker. This is a good cereal of sweet squares of some kind of grain, but one thing that I don't like is that every box of Life has to have some fucking kid on the cover, like if I was a parent who didn't know what kind of cereal to buy for my kids I would just pick up this one since there's a kid on the cover. Does that mean Honey Nut Cheerios are for bees, you stupid parent?


Coffee Mugs

Coffee mugs are a good sort of container for any drinks. Most regular glasses do not have a handle like coffee mugs, so forget about drinking something hot out of them unless you want to be injured which I don't. But also, I think the handle is a nice kind of thing to have all the time for a glass. Makes it feel kind of elegant or something. Also, their small size is a perfect proportion for a drink of anything except beer.


Ultimate X-Men/Fantastic Four

This is just a two issue thing that was included in some trade with some other useless stories. The plot is this crazy girl (Ultimate Mad Thinker) is trying to get revenge at Reed Richards because she used to like him so she steals Cerebro from the X-Men. Mike Carey is kind of difficult to follow sometimes, because it often feels as though he is rushing through his stories and leaves things out, and Pasqual Ferry's art is my least favorite art in the universe. So this book's not that great, but if you want to pick it up here's a link.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) by Wu-Tang Clan

Protect Ya Neck
Wu-Tang Clan Ain't Nuthing Ta F' Wit


Rogue Galaxy

I have not played a true role-playing video game since Final Fantasy Legend for the Game Boy in 1991. So I looked at reviews of this game that praised it for having a Star Wars like story and over 120 hours of gameplay. Well, I guess it's in space, and I believe the over 120 hours of gameplay because every thirty seconds monsters jump out of nowhere and you have to fight them. It's the exact same every time, too. So this game is boring and too bad I paid a lot of money for it because role playing games never drop in price much for used copies.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Preemptive Strike

I always liked Ro Laren because a) she was hot, and b) she wasn't a goody two shoes like everybody else on the goddamned Enterprise. Anyway, she's a tertiary character at best, and she was always in trouble. In this episode she is asked to infiltrate the Maquis, a terrorist organization against the Cardassians made up largely of Bajorans like Ro herself. Of course, she decides to join up with them at the end and it looks like Picard is going to cry because everybody on TNG is a big fat baby. This episode is pretty good though.


Death By Unga Bunga by The Mummies

This CD has the sound quality of something recorded on a peanut butter sandwich found in a dumpster, but I gotta say it's pretty fucking awesome. The Mummies were a crazy band that dressed up like mummies and never really paid any kind of money to be recorded. The songs are simple, but they're a whole lot of fun and they remind me of something you might have heard recorded in a garage in the 60s, except it was recorded in a garage in the 80s and 90s by people wrapped in bandages.

(You Must Fight To Live On The Planet Of The Apes)

(Also, there's nudity in that link to their homepage for those of you at work)


Street Angel

As you guys have probably figure out, the comics I mainly collect are mainstream superhero books. Not that I don't like the others, it's just that often whenever I pick an independent book like Street Angel, it gets canceled after like five issues and I get depressed. Street Angel was a quirky little ball of fun about a homeless skateboarding 12 year old vigilante who fights everybody from ninjas to Cortez to Satan. It got canceled after five issues and I was depressed (well, it didn't get CANCELED, the creators just stopped making it), but if you can track the trade down I recommend picking it up if you like comedy and violence which I do.


Tuesday, April 15, 2008


I liked this episode. In my old blog, I reviewed some TOS seasons, and explained that I liked that there could be a gangster world or a cowboy world or a Nazi world. In this episode, there is a gangster and a cowboy, and it's kind of a fun weird episode. Basically, the Enterprise computer starts being a lifeform, and wants to create offspring, but it's consciousness is located in the holodeck in the form of a train carrying a bunch of weirdos. It's stupid fun, but still fun.


Monday, April 14, 2008

My Computer

My computer isn't as terrible as it looks from this picture, although by the size of it I bet its monitor is about 95 years old. It has a good processor (2.4 gHz), and decent storage space (80 gigs), but its ram is pretty bad (256 MB). I tried to run Google Earth earlier and the map would barely move. To be fair, it's probably all the spy/malware that's buried in the computer from when it was my brother's, but it's still kind of sucky. Also, if I told my high school self that I was complaining about only having 256 megs of ram, he would shit himself, because he only had a computer with 4 megs of ram and 100 megs of harddrive space he was doublespacing up to 200 just so he could play X-Wing and Doom 2. Man, that kid needed to get laid.



Don't worry; I only have three more episodes of TNG to review and then I'm done. I started watching these on Netflix on and off two years ago, and finally I have gotten to the end. Don't get me wrong - it's been fun, but the 7th season really sucks and I'll be glad to get to the fantastic series finale. Man, this show had one of the best. Oh, right - this episode has Picard finding out he has a son but just kidding he doesn't and it is tres boring.


Mighty Avengers: The Ultron Initiative

Here's an ethical dilemma: I did not read this entire trade's worth of stories, because when I was buying it in single issue format I hated it so much I dropped it. Now, if you know me and my comic buying habits, you know it takes a lot for me to drop a book - usually I will hold on to a book for at least 10 issues after I start hating it. But this one was awful. Here's the plot: after the Marvel Heroes' Civil War, professional douchebag Iron Man forms this group of government approved Avengers to avoid evil, and good thing to, because evil strikes in the first issue. The not so nice robot Ultron takes over Iron Man and then makes the weather really stormy, and for four issues the Avengers basically stare at the robot while standing on the same street corner, no exaggeration. Bendis, a famous comic writer despite being largely untalented, tries to incorporate thought balloons, but if this is all that's going on in these heroes' heads, then no wonder I dropped the book. (PS - I readded the book a couple issues later when an artist I love took over, Mark Bagley).



My friend Nick really likes the seventh season of Star Trek: The Next Generation, but I'm just going to have to go on record here saying that it's even worse than the first season. This episode deals with Worf's son Alexander, and how he doesn't want to become a Klingon warrior (he was raised by his progressive Klingon mother for three years). Anyway, I have to give spoilers here, but Alexander from the future comes and tries to convince him to do it, but it never explains how he got there, or where he went at the end. Also, In this season they spent a lot more episodes just on the ship, so they didn't have to make planet sets. Here, there is one set, but it is really simple and then they reuse it all episode long so lame.


I'll Be Lightening by Liam Finn

When a dude that I was making out with the other week put on Liam Finn's debut album I'll Be Lightening, I took pause. Was he putting on an album with lyrics like "girl you seemed so nice, but I'll be gone by morning time," and "well I honestly don't remember who you are" to send me a message or was this just what he'd been listening to lately? Because most people don't overanalyze every little thing in life, I assume it's likely the latter, but in the end that's neither here nor there. What is here and there is that despite its heavy and confusing lyrics, this album (that I had previously ignored because I was busy listening to Bon Iver) is actually pretty great. Loose heavy bass lines and thick lyrics make for a good time that I definitely recommend. Also, the internets tells me that Finn is the son of Neil Finn of Crowded House, which is neat because I have an odd attachment to "Don't Dream It's Over." Huzzah trivia. Huz-zah.

Rating: 72%

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Call Of The West by Wall Of Voodoo

Wall Of Voodoo, for those of you who don't know, is this new wave band from the early eighties who were heavily influenced by spaghetti western music written by composers like Ennio Morricone. They had one "hit," "Mexican Radio," which is on this album, but I kind of like their other stuff too. Great tasting things don't always work together, like pickles and chocolate ice cream for example, but this marriage of western style and new wave really works. Though it's not on this album, you should also check out their cover of "Ring Of Fire," which ain't bad.


Generation M

This series spun out of the events of House of M, a lame kind of storyline in which the Scarlet Witch uttered the words "No More Mutants," reducing the Marvel comics mutant population to 200 people. It was poorly executed and way overhyped, but Generation M by Paul Jenkins and Ramon Bachs was a pretty decent result. It follows a news reporter, Sally Floyd, as she writes a column about recently depowered mutants. For some it is great because they can now be eligible for professional sports (in the Marvel Universe mutants are banned from pro sports), or they are no longer a lizard person, but for some it is bad because they used to have fire for a heart (Chamber), or they liked being able to fly. This is woven with the story of a serial killer who is murdering depowered mutants and harassing Sally Floyd, and her own dealing with the recent death of her daughter, who had a mutation that caused her to start getting younger until she died. It's a great character piece that I definitely recommend picking up even if you haven't read House of M, which was awful.


Saturday, April 12, 2008

The Odd Couple by Gnarls Barkley

I don't know why so many people are down on this album, because I have to say it's pretty good. It's danceable, the music is complexly layered and varied in style, and the lyrics are intricately woven. I think it's a better album than Gnarls Barkley's first album. Anyway, I'll just link a couple songs and then you guys will probably definitely buy this one.

PS - only the first one is a legitimate video, so the second one will probably be down at any second.


Fantastic Four: Heroes Reborn

In the mid 90s, Marvel was on the verge of filing for bankruptcy, probably from producing too many foil cover variants that nobody ever bought. In order to try to boost sales, they created the company wide crossover of the Onslaught Saga, which ended with everybody except the X-Men and Spider-man dying. Then, they rebooted these characters in what was known as the "Heroes Reborn" storyline, which was supposed to solve thirty years of continuity gaffes, but instead was just boring and lame. This trade collects the first six issues of the Fantastic Four's Heroes Reborn story, which basically compresses the first 52 issues of old Fantastic Four continuity down. It's rushed and really boring, but Jim Lee drew it so that was a plus for anybody who likes Jim Lee's art, which in the 90s was everybody, and today is almost everybody I guess.


Thursday, April 10, 2008

Daft Punk: Alive 2007

After Glenn's dismal review of Human After All, I feel the need to defend Daft Punk with a positive review of Alive 2007. This is a live album recored on their tour last year and it is on my (and lots of other) top 10 of 2007 list. Why? Because it's freaking amazing, that's why. Basically every track is a rockin mix of two (or more) other DP tunes performed live and the result is deliciously entertaining. I regret that I didn't get to see any of the live shows because, as evidenced by the video below, they were hotter than a summer's day in Panama.

Rating: 81%

Human After All by Daft Punk

The first three or four songs on this album are really great, danceable beats, but I quickly lose interest after that. What can I say about this album specifically? Well, it's basically like every other Daft Punk album. If you like those ones, you'll probably like this one.


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Journey's End

This is the last appearance of Wesley Crusher (thus far - I'm still hoping there will be a Titan tv show in which he appears). A lot of people hate Wesley, but I was fine with him after he stopped saving the ship every episode like in season one. Anyway, he's been off the ship for a while at the academy, but in this episode he returns and is a big douchebag. It turns out he's sick of school, but who cares, because the Enterprise has been ordered to forcibly displace a bunch of American Indians (get it? like happened before?). Don't worry, though, these American Indians are such a group of terrible stereotypes that you don't feel too bad for them, and everything works out in the end, including Wesley becoming a god.


Clif Bar

I just ate one of these and let me tell you it was basically like eating somebody's already chewed food that had been mixed with model glue. Sure, I think I tasted peanuts and chocolate chips, but I also tasted a lot of other tastes I'm not too happy about. On the bright side, I don't feel like eating and I also feel like running until I puke it all out so maybe that's what they mean by "energy bar."


Star Trek: The Motion Picture soundtrack by Jerry Goldsmith

I've never reviewed a movie soundtrack before, and since I've been doing nothing but nerd stuff lately, I guess I'll start here. Just kidding; I only review things as I encounter them, and I just happened to listen to this the other day. Anyway, this soundtrack by legendary film composer Jerry Goldsmith is amazing - sure, people love the actiony score to Star Trek II by James Horner, but this one Goldsmith has a lot more freedom because there are 12 minute special effects sequences all over the place. Works for the music, but people kind of hate the movie (not me). This score transcends the movie, although the famous Star Trek: The Next Generation theme was used here for the first time (gotta take everything hand-me-down, don't you, tng?), so you might not be able to separate that in your head.

RATING: 83% is a complete piece of shit. Why? Because apparently the only acceptable synonym for the word "weaker" is "woman." Think I'm kidding? See for yourself here. And feel free to complain here. Or rather, feel encouraged.

Rating: 0%


In this episode Dr. Crusher makes an antivirus for borderline schizophrenic Barclay that accidently de-evolves the whole crew. It's a pretty stupid premise, to be honest, but it's a pretty good and freakily executed episode. Data and Picard happen to be off ship and return to find the Enterprise drifting and life signs indeterminate. I do want to point out though that Worf turns into a crazy prehistoric Klingon monster that kills several crewmen, and then at the end of the episode Dr. Crusher is telling jokes about accidentally causing this virus. Whoopsie fucky!


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Eye Of The Beholder

In this episode, a crewman kills himself who was previously showing no signs of depression, so it's up to Counselor Troi and Lieutenant Worf to figure out what's up, and also to get it on with each other. This episode is kind of creepy, and involves empathic echoes and murder, but then they pull a cardinal storytelling no-no and make most of the episode a dream. I'm pretty sure Troi also dreams several scenes she's not in for some stupid reason, and at the end of the episode I can't even remember if she and Worf actually did it or if she just dreamed it, though they do have a relationship throughout season 7 so who knows.


Monday, April 7, 2008

Batman/Joker: Switch

The Joker is an incongruous character, portrayed anywhere from being a homicidal rapist to being an annoying prankster. In this one-shot, prestige format book done a few years ago, he's funny, but totally out of his mind and just randomly kills people, but doesn't do any raping so you kind of side with him. The plot is somebody has surgically moved Joker's mouth from his face to the back of his neck, and he goes around London trying to act like Batman to find out who. Of course, killing random people isn't really how Batman rolls, and Batman must track down Joker. The writing is fine, but the painted art is what stands out, and while John Bolton's Batman is a little too stout for my tastes, his Joker and deformed people are pretty great.


Sunday, April 6, 2008


Oxygen is a very good atom, and one I can't really complain too much about since we all need it to live. It is a key element in hydrocarbons, the base construct of all life as we know it. One bad thing about oxygen is that it can explode and cause fire, but on the other hand my car wouldn't run too well without explosions or fire. Ahhh, it's good I guess.


Avengers: World Trust

World Trust is a classic Avengers tale (well, I mean the lineup is classic; it's actually just from 2002) taking place a short time before the pointless shakeup known as Avengers: Disassembled. The first half of this trade focuses on the Avengers leading the world when every capital city on Earth is mysteriously transported to another dimension. Then they save everybody, of course, and the last two issues, drawn by the amazing Gary Frank, are about talking and politics, so there's a nice waste of one of the best artists in comics. It's an interesting premise but it doesn't go anywhere, which doesn't mean I'm justifying what Brian Michael Bendis has done to the team (but who am I kidding since I currently buy every book that that douchebag writes).



I find myself frequently liking universally reviled Next Generation episodes, such as this one, Phantasms, Night Terrors, etc. This episode is about a strange comet that is actually a supercomputer from a long dead civilization that starts transforming the Enterprise into an alien city. Data is meanwhile possessed by many alien citizens and they have to figure out what the hell is going on before the whole ship is transformed into a giant stone tablet. Anyway, it's bizarre as hell which I like, and also University of Houston alumnus Brent Spiner puts in a great performance as like five separate characters.


One By One by Foo Fighters

I know that by liking Foo Fighters I am dismissing any kind of musical credibility in a lot of people's minds, but so what? I like Foo Fighters, and have been buying their albums ever since their self-titled debut. One By One is not as ridiculously poppy as There Is Nothing Left To Lose, and in fact harkens back to the strange chorded fun of Dave Grohl's Late! demos. The songs aren't especially complex, but they're fun to pump up to a volume that old people might find offensive.


Saturday, April 5, 2008


Okay so maybe becoming one of "those yoga people" (alt. "yoga cheerleader") has made me slightly annoying to people who hate themselves for not dragging their fat tired asses to the gym more often, but you know what? I have rock hard flat abs, I'm super flexible (good for the sex), and I can do like 30 pushups in a row (as opposed to the six or so I was workin before). And you see that little number on the left there? Yeah I can do that and then kick back into a push up. So yoga is awesome and fat haters can kiss my nicely toned butt.

Rating: 95%

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Daydream Nation by Sonic Youth

Everybody always asks me, since Sonic Youth is my favorite band, what is my favorite album by them. They expect me to say some obscure album, or one of their earlier, super abrasive works, but truth be told, it's their masterpiece Daydream Nation. It's my favorite album by Sonic Youth, and my favorite album of all time. At this exact moment they managed to combine their extreme noise-rock sensibilities (see Ghost Bitch from Bad Moon Rising) and their recent move away from that into more conventional song smithing (Schizophrenia from Sister is a good example) into songs that are simultaneously long, convoluted, and extremely catchy. This album as been my favorite for 13 years, and I can't really see anything replacing it. Check out these tracks, though the whole thing is fantastic. Here's my first top rating, and big deal, I went over 5 sentences.

Teenage Riot
Silver Rocket
The Sprawl
Cross The Breeze
Eric's Trip/Hey Joni

(I'll stop myself before I post a link to every song. If you don't own this album you are doing yourself a great disservice.)

RATING: 100%

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Chloe Sevigny

As a artsy-fartsy-indie-rock-lovin-sex-drugs-(law)-and-rock n' roll kind of girl I feel compelled to really like Chloe Sevigny. After all, I'm pretty sure that's required if I want to maintain a shred of my indie rock cred. Right? However, I have to take issue with the substantial damage Ms. Sevigny has done to fashion. (The Fug Girls call that number on the left there "Princess Catsuit McCigarette," which cracks my ass up.) There is also the issue of the little onscreen bj that she bestowed on Vincent Gallo in Brown Bunny. You're really not doing any favors to the women's movement there, Chlo! So yeah, I think I've decided that indie cred be dammed, I dislike this biatch. (Hopefully telling the story of how I saw Parker Posey on the street once will help me continue to get dates with skinny hipster boys...not that I want to date skinny hipster boys...oh god I'm so confused.)

Rating: 25%

Khachaturian: Suites And Dances

Of the "big three" Soviet composers of the 20th century, Aram Khachaturian is usually the most underplayed and underrecorded. Certainly, Shostakovich is the superior composer, but Prokofiev is definitely not the same caliber composer as Khachaturian, although he did write Peter And The Wolf which everybody loves because there is a story. I try to pick up new Khachaturian music whenever I see it (I mean new as in ones I have never heard since he died 30 years ago), and I hadn't heard three of the four pieces on this disc. The Valencian Widow is excitingly bombastic, and A.K.'s use of strange, Armenian folk tunes and chords is in full force. The Battle of Stalingrad is also a pretty great piece, even if it was written for propaganda, but big deal most Soviet music was at the time, and it is great if you love horns and drums which I do so let's fight.


Young Avengers/Runaways: Civil War

It's tough enough to write one team book, because you have to manage so many characters, so whenever there is a team teamup book, it usually gets totally out of control. I bought this because I love Runaways, and I always heard the Young Avengers were pretty good. This was a tie in to Marvel's Civil War event, which was a storyline in which the government decided to make everybody with powers register with them and become a soldier, but some heroes, led by Captain America said that's bullshit, and they fought the other heroes, led by Iron Man. Turns out Captain America lost and then got shot. This book is ok but it really doesn't have much to do with the main storyline, except the government sends some people to arrest the Runaways, so the Young Avengers try to help and it turns out they do.


Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Pet Sounds

Pet Sounds by The Beach Boys is the greatest album ever made. Period. It's inventive, it evokes some power emotions, from wistful romance to heartbreak and it's the best sounding and put together record ever done. No wonder Brian Wilson went batshit after releasing this album- it can't be topped. I dislike almost everything The Beach Boys ever did (except for the unreleased Smile album), but this album is jaw-droppingly amazing. 100%

Thine Own Self

In Next Gen episodes there is usually an 'A' plot and a 'B' plot - I learned a lot about writing from that show, and remember noticing the multi tiered plots when I was a kid. In this show, the 'A' plot about Data losing his memory and accidentally giving cancer to a village full of primitives (how come they never land on a planet that is at 20th century Earth level development? It's always the 1600s for some reason, and every village also looks exactly the same), but don't worry, he cures their cancer too in like a week. The 'A' plot is actually good, but the 'B' plot, about Counselor Troi taking the command officer test, is stupid. In the end, she gets promoted and now outranks Data for some fucking reason. Thanks, TNG Season 7.


With Teeth by Nine Inch Nails

Nine Inch Nails is one of my favorite bands, but I would rather listen to a photo album for an hour than this garbage.


Ultimate Spider-man Vol. 1: Power And Responsibility

Like I said in my review of Ultimate X-Men Vol. 1, I was tepid about the whole "Ultimate" line at first. Then, a few years after the fact, I read them and they were pretty much all awesome. Ultimate Spider-man is always a joy to read, and Brian Michael Bendis nailed the tone from day one. It is hilarious, fun, frustrating, and a little sad, and it is probably the most right feeling Spider-man book there has been in years.


The Lower Decks

The Lower Decks is an interesting episode of Next Gen because it focuses on some of the lowly ensigns from, uh, the lower decks. Basically these are the people who die in usual episodes (redshirts). Anyway, this episode focuses on them and their trials and it is ok, even though they suddenly invent one bartender character who I guess we're supposed to believe knows everybody on the ship by their first name. Maybe Whoopie Goldberg was sick or something.



One of the greatest indie films ever. One of the most, if not the most, influential movies in my life. It's getting to be an "older" film, but it holds up well. Great funny moments, and some touching ones. I give Swingers 97%. It's money.


I love rum. I love rum based drinks. You can take your vodka, tequila, beer, wines- I'll take rum. Especially coconut rum and spiced rum. (And, if you can find it, Redrum and Voodoo are the *best*). I give rum 94%. Drink responsibly.

The (New) Price Is Right

I think Drew Carey is doing great. I think I might enjoy it better than the Barker years. I give the Drew Carey Price is Right 80%.