Esoterica IX: Random Randomness Presented Randomly
Some assorted tidbits for your post-holiday enjoyment.
Enjoyable TV movie that saw the return of the Bill Bixby/Lou Ferrigno version of The Incredible Hulk to the small screen. Dr. Banner is back, looking as always for a cure to his rather impressive anger management issues and he ends up teaming with fellow hero Thor to beat up some baddies led by b-movie staples Tim Thomerson and Charles Napier. It's a little flat (as tends to be the case when you try to do a superhero thing on a TV movie budget) but the stuff with Hulk and Thor is amusing enough to warrant a viewing.
Probably the first really huge major event series for Marvel Comics, this takes a bunch of superheros (Spiderman, The Fantastic Four and a bunch of X-Men and Avengers) and pits them against a bunch of villains on an alien planet. Great artwork, some cool action and a pretty neat story make Secret Wars an easy pick-up for Marvel fans and fans of epic storytelling in general.
There have been a lot of good Star Wars games but against all odds, this one has ended up being my favorite. Combining the simple childhood joy of LEGO and the great fun of the original Star Wars trilogy, this is a great looking game with a nice sense of humor, fun action and great controls. It's just plain fun and really, when you sit down to a video game that's really all you want. Isn't it?
This Wes Craven-directed sequel is actually quite terrible (a series of flashbacks to the first film are fine but even the dog that survived gets one. WTH?) but for some ungodly reason, I find it entertaining. A team of young dirt bike riders end up in the desert this time and are menaced by a shockingly still alive Michael Berryman (his character apparently can shake off a snake bite and fall from a cliff which is impressive, I will admit) and the gigantic mutant brother of the main bad guy from the first film who is called only The Reaper. Craven directs things well enough but his heart isn't in it and it shows. The climax is rather nice in a 80's "let's just blow stuff up" sort of way and the Final Girl being blind is also an interesting touch. Still, The Hills Have Eyes Part II is pretty damn bad.
Next up, before we move on to our main course, I'd like to share two rather cheesily wonderful VHS sleeves I came across.
Now granted, Godzilla vs. Megalon is pretty cheesy by itself but this cover makes it even more so. I especially like that Megalon is ten times more flexible in the front cover than he is in the movie itself.
This one though takes the cake. Not often you see purported word killer Ghidrah looking that goofy (at least not before getting his contractual curb-stomping from Godzilla at the end of whatever movie he flies into) and I also love the "For kids only" stamp on the front.
And now we finish one of my favorite Stephen King offerings.
The comic book version of Creepshow is a beautifully drawn piece of work that lovingly recreates the movie in comic form. Stephen King's stories are interpreted fantastically by Berni Wrightson and you can tell just how much both author and artist love the old EC Comics. Creepshow is one of my favorite horror films and this adaptation is one of my favorite comic books.