Friday, September 30, 2011

Cobra Gets Mauled By Mongoose

This video makes me kind of mad.

Not at what's happening, really, although I like snakes and it always makes me a bit sad to watch one getting mauled. (It's far more common than you might think; snakes are essentially just mobile sausages, it's just that they're mobile sausages that are good at killing things smaller than themselves and being venomous. Of course they're popular prey.)

No, what makes me mad is the realization that all those cartoons that depict mongooses have been misleading people for decades. Look at that mongoose. It's huge. A mongoose doesn't get into a fight with a cobra, it just walks up and goes "munch munch munch." There isn't even a hint of drama, any more than there would be if a tyrannosaur walked up to an angry bull and ate it. (Well, a smidgen more drama, I suppose-the bull isn't poisonous.)

-Signing off.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Watch Out For Low-Hanging Centipedes

As if the last video I posted featuring a centipede wasn't already good enough at giving people nightmares...

My sister has remarked that centipedes give her the creeps like nearly nothing else. This is a girl who calls nearly any and every strange, bizarre, and borderline misshapen hellspawn animal cute, by the way.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


When I was a kid, I played video games the even-then ancient Atari 2600. Why? It was what I had.

One of the most infuriating things about Atari games at the time was that they were essentially endless. (Considering how hard it is to reach the end of some newer games, I suppose that could be a blessing in disguise, even if those few of my classmates who knew what I was talking about when I mentioned an Atari game mocked the games' endless natures.) Even then, I think I would have preferred it to an ending like this one.

Yoink, ha ha ha, not really an ending for you.

-Signing off.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Betterman at least occasionally had really brutal fights.

He recovers from this by virtue of his Nebula form's head not being his "real" head (it's obviously a bit complicated).

-Signing off.

Monday, September 26, 2011

But It Has Giant Robots, So All Is Forgiven

I've seen a similar movie to this one that was apparently made by the same group around the same time.

That is, clearly bad, and really dumb.

This one has a clear edge up on that one (Robot Jox, if you're wondering), by virtue of having a giant robot scorpion.

I adore scorpions*, and giant robot scorpions are generally awesome. Even if, as this thing does, they lack the claws.

*Scorpions are like, I don't know, the venomous mutant crocodiles of the insect world. And yes, I know, blah blah not insects blah blah, but they're part of what is called "the insect world," so it doesn't matter. Fussing at anyone but the blatantly ignorant about that sort of thing is dopey.

Where was I? Ah, yes, scorpions weren't content with being able to seize and crush their prey, so they acquired the ability to poison them to death, too. A scorpion's stinger is possibly the most malicious-looking appendage in the entire animal world.

-Signing off.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Watch As I Ignore The Central Premise

Y'know, much as I'm aware that this video is razzing George Lucas for his repeated edits to the original trilogy (most of which don't really bother me at all-if we just forget about that Han vs. Greedo thing, which is honestly the only thing most people pay attention to anyway, I'm fine)...

...I still think that the funniest part is the fake YouTube menu thingy towards the end. Perhaps that's missing the point...

Not that I care.

-Signing off.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Raideen Fights Baragon (The Other Baragon)

(As a brief, momentary aside, I'm linking to this old column by Dave Campbell about the Red Skull getting thrashed by Magneto. Why? My sister was curious, and I'm curious how well she'd be able to read the article on her phone. That is all.)

One of the most fearsome enemies that the original Raideen faced was Baragon (no relation to the Toho daikaiju that fought a giant Frankenstein's monster, probably), a huge flying dragon created by Barao, the archnemesis of the civilization that created Raideen (the people of the imaginary continent of Mu). Baragon is one of Raideen's toughest enemies, but he's also made of pure craziness.

Here, the great dragon looks fairly... normalish, but you just can't see the crazy details too well. (Incidentally, the weapons in the foreground protect the fortress that maintains Raideen, which, I'm sorry to say I neglected to mention the last time I talked about how nuts this stuff is, is inside an enormous purple oyster shell that closes when the base is under attack.)

I add this image simply to show Baragon's happy face.

Anatomically, Baragon is a close relative of the enemy I've nicknamed Elephant's Head Ninja. That is, it's an animal form with a warrior guy sticking out of a random, convenient location. Baragon's warrior bit comes out of his back. In and of itself, that's not so weird, although the warrior has four arms.

No, what's crazy is that if you're looking closely enough (admittedly, these aren't the best screenshots, but I'm only human and putting too many pictures up takes a lot of time anyway), you can see that Barao's lieutenants are being worn by Baragon's warrior section as hand puppets.

And no, that's not at all misleading or misrepresenting what happened. In the previous two episodes, those guys got killed by Raideen, and so Barao brought forth Baragon for a last ditch attack... and he pulled out a pair of giant hand puppets and gave them to Baragon. That is literally exactly what happened.

So what kinds of abilities did Baragon and his puppet-wielding warrior symbiote have? Well, aside from the obvious flight and being much larger than Raideen (the warrior is of course in the same scale as Raideen), he had some fairly standard stuff, like eye beams and whirlwind generation, the warrior had some melee weapons (silly as they were), and the puppet heads spat projectiles (funny that that ends up being less silly by comparison). He could also recover from being shot in the eye with a giant robot arrow without apparent harm (although that was probably just lazy animation and direction). One of his more visually interesting abilities was his ability to stretch out his hair, which looked like the unholy lovechild of sawswords and barbed wire, and use them as a rather tentacular reaching and grabbing attack.

Apparently, this wasn't enough, because Baragon could also cause the hair stuff to merge into this... Raideen catcher. Seriously, that's pretty much the only word for it.

All of this wasn't enough to bring down Raideen, though, and the two titanic combatants got rather up close and personal with each other, leading Raideen to stab Baragon right in the mouth.

Which didn't go well, because Baragon has lava for blood.

How did Raideen get out of getting lava blood all over him? Well, somebody flew a Bluegar (Raideen's support craft, which I mention in that other post) loaded with a full payload of heavy missiles right down Baragon's throat, and the ensuing explosion split Baragon in half. This weakened Baragon enough (!) that Raideen was able to finish him off.

(And no, I'm not going to say more than that about the Bluegar suicide attack thing. Completely aside from the spoiler aspect, I'd have to explain a whole bunch of other stuff I haven't mentioned at all.)

Of course, that still left Barao to fight, and Barao was pretty bizarre, too... although that's a subject for another post.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


In many series, technobabble (phrases invented by writers to describe confusing events in science fiction, fantasy, and other series) is delivered fairly well.

Then there's Betterman's technobabble.

"Electromagnetic... and ultrasonic pulses work in different mediums... but they both cause vibrations."

That's hilarious. After I first found this clip, I told my sister that, if I ever decided to buy and watch Betterman, I'd pretty much just laugh the whole time. (Well, there are some things I wouldn't laugh at, but that's because Betterman also features some truly brutal violence that it's hard to believe characters could come back from [even though those characters do, of course]. Such as decapitations.)

-Signing off.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Greatly Belated Book Review(s): M. T. Anderson's Thrilling Tales

(AKA "Pals in Peril.")

Every once in a while, you find a children's book of exceptional quality. (Here's an older review of a comic-format book that I read some time back. I ought to figure out how to review the Robot City books, which I read a while ago, too...) M. T. Anderson's Thrilling Tales, of which I have read "The Clue of the Linoleum Lederhosen" and "Jasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware" are clearly qualified as exceptional.

I'll admit, children's books often have an easy time engaging me. I might be an adult who is generally regarded by those who know me as smarter than average (not boasting, just stating what others state), but I'll happily read or watch things aimed at any age group if it suits my tastes.

And these books have what is usually an easy way to interest me: Make things funny. They are very funny. Even better, it's hard to explain a lot of the funny bits without spoiling the plot.

The narration is extremely lemony, to the point of getting lost in talking about mostly irrelevant things that are happening rather than the plot. Amazingly, the books don't suffer for it.

However, the humor isn't what makes the books great, although it is the primary contributing factor to what makes them an enjoyable read.

No, what makes these books great is that they are perhaps the best metatextual commentary on the nature of fictional characters I have ever seen. And despite being about good and positive things, like friendship, courage, problem-solving, and heroism, the world the characters live in is one of the bleakest fictional worlds I've ever seen because of it. (Though like our own world, it also has its moments of wonder. Those're the good bits.)

Explaining why would be telling.

Also, Jasper Dash is one of the best characters ever. Why? Because he's an Edisonade character living in the modern world. And it is hilarious. (Also, while he's funny and silly, I also think he's a genuinely great guy.)

-Signing off.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Golden Age Moment of the Day (75)

From Smash Comics #26 (you could find it here if you're interested)...

Remember, kids, Bozo the Robot/Iron Man: Guy who hits people really hard such that they accidentally die. He's no killer./sarcasm>

-Signing off.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Mega Man vs. Met (That Little Helmet Guy)

I could have sworn I posted the earlier version of this, but can't seem to find where I did it...


Joe Rovang (i.e. the poster, whose user name on YouTube is Rofang) is a genius. Or at least pretty brilliant.

-Signing off.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

SA-X From Metroid Fusion: Not the Brightest Bulb

It's apparently hard to program a good enemy AI into a simple game...

It's not that you can't get something that will exhibit smart behaviors, it's just that testing will reveal... special behaviors, by which I mean, inadequate programming causes the AI to be unable to cope with some situations.

Such as... the player hiding. (In the below videos, the hyperactive orange and red character is SA-X, a sort-of evil sort-of clone of Samus Aran from the Metroid games. The other similar-looking character is Samus, the player character, who can turn into a ball to move through tight spaces.)

Some people remark that the music (which is the theme for the SA-X) sounds a bit sarcastic. I'd tend to agree.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Revenge of Yar's Revenge

I recently discovered that Atari created a remake of an old video game, Yar's Revenge.

And I've got just one question.

Can Yar still eat any substance and spit energy missiles capable of vaporizing solid rock?

Because if not, I'm not sure this is a remake worthy of the name.

(Yes, I'm aware that Yar is now a cute girl with extra arms and wings. No, I'm not saying she should spit projectiles because of any kind of weird fetishes-a multiarmed winged chick is bad enough already. And yes, I'm going to quit before I dig a hole I can't climb out of.)

-Signing off.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Monday, September 12, 2011

Moving Is For Sissies

This video's title, "Godmars doesn't move," isn't entirely accurate: Not counting the transformation sequences, Godmars moves twice.

Of course, one of those times is when Godmars moves for maybe five seconds at about 6:04, while another is two brief flashes around 9:06 or so.

Ironically, this means that those brief movements are rather more impressive, as if to say "Oh, boy, Godmars is moving now, NOW you're in trouble!"

Actually, I think he just moves too fast to see*. He obviously must be moving offscreen, doing it very quickly is probably just why.

*I'm mostly kidding. I think.

-Signing off.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Gundam Pilot Eats a Sandwich

The other day, I was on YouTube watching a few episodes of the official posting of the original Mobile Suit Gundam.

And then, Amuro Ray ate a sandwich.

That must be a pretty darned good sandwich.

-Signing off.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Back to the Modern Technology

I shared the first wave of this, I might as well share the second:

It's kind of hilarious that they have him talk in English and then subtitle his lines.

-Signing off.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

REEEIIII... DEEEEEN! (may be a girl)

I mentioned this version of Raideen ("Reideen") once before, and even embedded this exact video once before, and remarked on its remarkably slow pacing (which is described on TVTropes as an attempt to "realistically" capture the appearance of massive things in motion, not that I think it really works at all).

From the looks of things (that I've found on YouTube), not all of the series is quite so bad in terms of being ridiculously slow, but there's something else that occurred to me when I was looking this over again more recently:

"Reideen" (I put the quotes around it persistently because they still pronounce it Raideen) is very feminine compared to Raideen. (A video and images with old-school Raideen can be found here. Or by clicking the "raideen" label.)

It's got beefy-ish arms (although not that beefy), true, but it's also got long, slender legs with rather big thighs, wide hips, high-heeled feet, long flowing hair...

...and those soft beautiful eyes, which are also accompanied by a rather small chin and a neck that I would also describe as feminine (although you can't see it that well).

"She" also has a rather bulky chest, which could easily be interpreted any which way. (No, no screenshots to illustrate my point; I'm not going there.)

If you can't tell, I don't think there's anything wrong with this; aside from the fact that it's amusing because it's presumably at least mostly unintentional, I think there should be more subtly feminine super robots. (Because I'll be darned if I'm not annoyed by all the silly pink heart robots out there with obvious in-your-face breasts.)

-Signing off.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Invid's Guide to the Star Wars Universe: Alien Species #15

141. Celegian. The first sentence in the Celegian species' "biology and appearance" section is "Celegians appear to many humanoids as 'floating brains.'"

There was a Celegian Jedi named Ooroo.

So the existence of Celegians demonstrates the existence of floating brain Jedi.

Best Star Wars alien ever, or best anything ever?

Making it maybe even a little better than that, they couldn't breathe oxygen, so they travelled around in life support tanks.

Giant brain in jar Jedi, you guys.

Rating: 5/5. See above.

142. Celestial. Celestials are an unknown group of dudes from the past who did all kinds of big stuff, like moving planets around through the galaxy, and may have partially shaped hyperspace itself to try to isolate various nasty things from the galaxy's past.

And that's about all we know.

Rating: 2/5. There's nothing really wrong with the Celestials as such; it's just that there's not really anything right with them either. If it were to turn out that they're the Marvel Comics Celestials created by Jack Kirby, I'd probably bust a gut, though.

143. Cemas. We know that Cemas (or possibly Cemases, or something) have feet, because somebody helped one to its feet.

And that's it.

Rating: 1/5. Feet? That's all we know? On the other hand, I suppose a Jedi that was nothing but feet could be amusing.

144. Cephalon. Cephalons apparently have multiple brains that relay thoughts to each other; despite their lack of sensory organs, they also can perceive four dimensions (the three physical ones and time) and thus don't properly distinguish between past, present and future. Whatever the heck that means.

The best thing to come from this is that they are so incomprehensible that one character claims that not only do Cephalons not make sense, they make "anti-sense."

Rating: 3/5. Anti-sense mutually annihilates with sense, leaving only jumbled, formless information.

145. Cerean. If you saw Episode I, you may have noticed a dude with a white mustache and beard and a huge tall head (he got like one line) who was not named in the film (his name is Ki-Adi-Mundi). Possibly the most interesting note involving Cereans (since there's obligatory stuff about their huge heads making them smart and junk) is that male Cereans have shorter lifespans than female Cereans, meaning that there aren't as many, and Cereans also have low birthrates, so polygamy is a common practice among them.

And even though Jedi aren't normally allowed to marry or whatever, Ki-Adi-Mundi had eight wives, because the Jedi made exceptions for members of species for whom breeding is desperately important.

Rating: 3/5. Because the existence of Cereans means there's someone I can jokingly call "pimp-daddy Jedi" as a result. Or "(old-fashioned) Mormon Jedi," take your pick.

146. Cha'a. Cha'a are a reptilian species who apparently don't discourage sibling cannibalism and like eating things alive. (Cut that out, writer guys.) They are often described as wily and ambitious. (What did I just say, writer guys?) They are also known for being technically proficient, designing excellent technology and stuff, and some were students at Luke Skywalker's Jedi academy. (THANK YOU, writer guys.)

Rating: 2.5/5. I don't like giving halves, but the fact that I'm almost exactly split down the middle (they have two stereotypical reptilian traits contrasting less stereotypical traits and looking rather interesting) makes me think it's appropriate here.

147. Cha'wen'he. Cha'wen'he are birdish things with three heads and their brains in their bodies. They apparently have finger lips. They also have trouble recognizing personal property.

Rating: 4/5. They're very alien (look at the page picture) and elegantly simple.

148. Chadra-Fan. Chadra-Fan are bat-faced "rodent" people, i.e. they're really short next to adult humans, and have seven distinct senses which are all much more sensitive than human senses. Their high metabolisms supposedly mean that they can work constantly, and only need two-hour naps (that's not how high metabolisms necessarily work, writer guys), and they have short lifespans compared to humans (although that is at least partly how high metabolisms work). Also, they come from a planet called Chad.

Rating: 3/5. Nothing special, nothing awful. Just another Star Wars alien species. Move along.

149. Chagrian. That huge guy with horns who yells at the Senate for "order" when it erupts in the no-confidence tizzy in Episode I was a Chagrian. Apparently they're amphibious, resistant to radiation, and the men once used their horns to fight each other for mates.

I suspect that there's some kind of joke one could make there, but I'm not sure what it is.

Rating: 3/5. Move along.

150. Chakrata. Apparently, the Chakrata are non-canonical because they didn't make it in; Timothy Zahn seems to have once had plans for them, though. He apparently once mentioned them at a convention while playing an RPG.

Rating: 3/5. While the information is sketchy, the fact that we know about them because an author (who, as I've mentioned many times, is one of my favorites) was playing a game and name-dropped them is a pretty cool story.

-Signing off.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Don't Tick Off Harry Ord

Why not?

Because he has absolutely no problem with executing you with a freaking giant robot if he feels the situation calls for it.

-Signing off.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Getter Robo Armageddon Equals...

In the form of Getter Robo G's "Starvengers" dub (which I am sure was distributed on home video under a different name), Getter Robo was my first super robot series (and also my sister's-it probably influences the way she draws robots). It's also one of the all-time most famous and popular super robots in the world. (It owes at least some of its popularity to the difficult-for-English-speakers-to-obtain Getter Robo manga by Ken Ishikawa, which I have heard is mind-blowing.)

So it's rather fitting that in the late 1990s, they would make a Getter Robo series, Getter Robo Armageddon (more properly translated as "Shin [new/changed] Getter Robo: The Last Day," although Armageddon is its official English localization's name and works poetically), which would embody the themes of that decade's mecha and robot series entirely.

Specifically, Armageddon takes elements and themes from two of the most influential of '90s robot anime, Evangelion and GaoGaiGar, and blends them into a single story that also uses elements of the Getter Robo manga to create an incredibly brilliant series which is both dark (like Evangelion) and uplifting (like GaoGaiGar at its best).

Well played, Getter Robo. Well played.

(It should also be noted that one of the most popular mecha/robot series of the last decade, Gurren Lagann, owes a lot creatively to Getter Robo generally, although calling it a "ripoff" is at best disrespectful to the craft that went into the series and at worst closed-minded poopyheadedness. Yes, I'll go there.)

-Signing off.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


So I was watching random super robot series clips on YouTube, and found this one, which shows the launching and transformation sequences of the robots from an obscure series (at least, in non-Spanish speaking countries) called Ginguiser or something.

Once I got over the fact that these transformations are mind-bendingly pointless (why are they vehicles in the hangar?), and the fact that the girl is relegated to a spaceship instead of a robot (the more girls who get to pilot super robots, the better, I sez, especially if they're more than just fanservice excuses), I realized...

...this would be the worst vehicle mode disguise ever.

On the other hand, I also think a firetruck or something with a super robot face on it would be strangely reassuring.

-Signing off.