Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Berenstain Bears and the Prize Pumpkin

Thanksgiving is here at last, or “already” if you're one of those unprepared types. Yes it's time for the scared American institution of gorging on insurmountable quantities of foodstuffs to celebrate the overtaking of a native cultures land. Nah, I really don't care about the moral logistics of the day. Frankly I'm more concerned with how the addition of dried fruit could make or break my stuffing. If you're a bear of the Berenstain variety the holiday is more likely to revolve around a moralizing mother and vindictive father. Let's see how they celebrate the season shall we?

The first few pages of The Prize Pumpkin actually had me a little worried. Everything's peaceful and upbeat, not to mention the remarkably wordy passages about the wonders of Autumn (sounds like the title for a sextape). My fear turned out to be unwarranted as Papa bear yet again saves the day by page seven when he proclaims his friend, Farmer Ben to be “not such a much.” Is this something people actually say? Not such a much? I swear to multiple deities I've never heard that phrase before. And what has Papa feeling despicable this time around? He's very proud of a giant pumpkin growing in their field which Farmer Brown referred to as “a nice little patch.” Oh you best believe this shit just got real.

After dinner, the cubs start complaining how with Halloween over and Christmas so far away, there's nothing good to look forward too. Consider that Mama's cue to commence a speech about a wonderful day called Thanksgiving that he kids have somehow never heard of in their time on this planet. Thankfully Papa butts in on her chatter by announcing how he plans to enter his pumpkin into the town pumpkin contest and finally dethrone Farmer Ben who's been the winner for the past decade. Papa immediately begins series of mentally unstable behavior by sitting outdoors and watching the Giant grow. Yes he gave the pumpkin a title.

Over the next few weeks, Papa's mental degradation continues. First it's fairly innocent acts like special plant food and timed watering. Later it escalates into covering the pumpkin in a blanket so it doesn't get cold and talking to it. His conversation points are from a book he bought from the local swindler, Raffish Ralph. Yep; Bear valley has an officially designated swindler, and people buy things from him without thinking “oh right, he's a swindler.” The cubs interrupt a deep conversation with vine fruit to inform Papa that Brown has his large scale pumpkin he refers to as the Monster. This is really all just a thinly veiled allegory for penis envy, isn't it? Just like you'd expect any responsible parent to behave, Papa encourages his children to trespass at night into a dark field only to be chased away by the threat of pitchfork.

Finally the day of the big contest arrives and wouldn't you know it, Papa only achieves 3rd place behind Farmer Brown and the old witch from Trick or Treat. The ensuing shame march towards home leaves Mama with a clear window for another moralizing speech about all the family has to be thankful for. Her loved ones begin to feel better by staring off at the cool Autumn scenery, truly thankful for any distraction from her nonsense.

On Thanksgiving day, Sister remarks how happy she is that their pumpkin didn't win the honor of being displayed in front of city hall as it was instead slaughtered and turned into various pies. That's what they do to losers in this family. It all wraps up with a page about how the bears understand how blessed they are to have family, friends, etc. All of which are conspicuously absent from their dinner table.

And on that cynical note, have a happy Thanksgiving. No matter if you're doing the classic overdose of family or a more private affair, I sincerely hope you have a good time. I'll attempt to get one more post up before the month is out so keep an eye out for something this weekend. Until then, don't wreck yourselves too much on mashed potatoes.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Shuriken Sentai Ninninger Episodes 27-32

A rather odd perk to running a blog is the spread sheet of your own behavioral patterns. For instance, during the years I've been writing here November has always been a bit sluggish and half-baked. No clue why that is. I'm plenty cheery, the weather's been decent, but that was last week. Just now I', having to redo a decent bit of this article to make up for the time loss from a few days of neck pain, followed by a weekend of binge viewing Jessica Jones. Talk about great timing for a series by the way. I mean it pops up along with the first solid snowfall of the year which made for an awesome excuse to sit around watching the boob tube. Currently I'm facing something I truly despise, a 9 AM job interview. So with the threat of employment baring down, let's talk about he pleasantries of Japanese television.

Episode 28

Big shift in tone and focus here as we get a very kid friendly, I.E. crazy episode. There's a new kid living near the dojo who thinks ninja are lame. Well not really, he's just caving to peer pressure at the pre-school level no less. When our heroes decide to help the kids mom out by delivering lunch they find his preschool to be a force field surrounded terror fortress run by Yokai. Oh and from now on I'm sticking with that spelling. I have no clue why this fansub group adds a U when nobody else does. Rant over, let's get back on track. The place is secured by an Izayoi ninja. Yea, you read that right, Kyuuemon has his own school of ninjitsu which means we have new kinds of monsters and basic goons to boot.
Adults can't enter the pre-school grounds so the team uses magic to transform into toys and brave the dangers of giant children. While inside they slowly revert to their original forms and start fighting while Fuuka and Nagi guide all the kids onto a bus with a happy dance and chicken hats. Somehow that plays into the monsters plan as the bus is rigged to never stop, an affliction which is later bestowed onto Takaharu.
All in all it's a rather bonkers tale and fairly funny despite the handicap of annoying children. Most of it works as a stand-alone story except for kickstarting this new story arc and a surprisingly serious ending. Gramps has a reflective moment where he regrets how his failings as a teacher lead to Kyuuemon being such a kooky bastard. He also let's slip how Kyu got all his groovy powers by stealing them from Fuuka and Taka's dad.

Episode 29

Here we have an excellent example of a series utilizing previously underdeveloped plot points to deliver a top tier installment. We pick up right where the last ep left off with grampa continuing the tale of how his son, Tsumuji trained alongside Kyuuemon who stole his nintality and erased his memories of the incident. Remember back in...was it episode 16? Where Tsumuji's lost powers seemed like just a simple way of putting together a sentimental story? Well now we're treated to the real deal as his memories are turned into a twisted board game to crush childrens spirits.
Naturally the team finds themselves playing the same game. Upon realizing it's made from their dads/uncles memories they face the dilemma of whether to enlist his help in beating this challenge. Yakumo makes the choice to bring Tsumuji in and we get to see the full tale of his promise as a ninja, his continued training alongside Kyuuemon, and the eventual betrayal where he lost his powers. Poor guy overcomes any emotional blows and helps the team rescue all the lost kids with a good old fashioned speech so they can beat down the baddie of the day.
Everything culminates in a great scene between father and son. Grampa is saddened by his failings as a father/teacher but Tsumuji doesn't need any of that. Even though he didn't achieve his dream of becoming a great ninja, his new dream is to help these kids accomplish their goals. Then they share a quick hug and damn if it isn't effective as all hell. Mark this one as a high point in the series.

Episode 30

Switching gears from deep emotional stuff we get a rather straightforward episode mainly notable for adding another cute ninja girl to the mix. She's actually an old friend of Takaharu's who wants to show off her new teaching position at a new ninja school. Little does she know her boss is possessed by an evil ant ninja who wishes to turn the kids into soulless soldiers.
There's nothing really wrong here, just a basic story that sets up a potentially recurring love interest for Taka. Not trying to sell it short but considering it's placed between better, more important entries makes it seem a tad lackluster.
I'm positive there's a website for this sort of thing.
Episode 31

So the newest evil ninja on the block is a badger (who everyone mistakes him for a raccoon) who steals special traits from people. He first uses this ability on Kasumi who frankly deserved it for delivering a terrible pep talk minutes before when she points out that staying in the race sometimes requires being a step ahead. Oh so that's what I've been missing. I just have to be ahead of everyone to register as a competitor. Bunch of damn nonsense.
The badger's big on gaming so the kids bet their talents in a game where they must recover the ball he keeps his stolen goodies in. What follows is a mix of body doubles and personality swapping. Oh, and let's not forget swan boat possession which turns out to be an oddly important development later on.
If the write up seems short for what I'm claiming to be an important installment, it's because all this badger based tomfoolery ends a few minutes earlier than most tales to make way for a bigger plot point. Each ninja monster defeated so far has turned into a mystical gear. Mr. Badger marks the final gear necessary for Kyuuemon to power his own giant robot with which to kick ass. And kick ass he most surely does as he destroys most of the teams robots and leaves us with a sudden cliffhanger.

Episode 32

With the ninja allies destroyed except for rodeomaru, and with Lion Ha-oh broken, Kyuuemon brings the fight back down to human size and blasts the hell out of our crew. Grampa swings in for a rather showy fight though even he finds himself slightly unprepared for the situation. Before things can get too horrible, he unleashes a strange light from his chest which Kyuuemon feels certain is the end shuriken.
From there, the episode mainly revolves around the team trying to get the robot situation under control. At first they decide to just have their monk friend build new ones. Everyone comes up with a design for their new oversized whip only to blow it at the soul-infusion stage of the process. Takaharu actually begins to have an Epiphany that doing things just like gramps isn't the right path for them to take. Of course he bungles his speech, leaving no one quite sure of what he means before it's time to charge into battle. Against who you ask? Well that badger is back somehow thanks to the contrivance of ninja skills. It's all for the best though since we're treated to some of the best action this series has to offer.
Problems arise once the monsters turn giant sized. That's when the kids finally figure out a way past their robot problem. They decide to use the possession technique Nagi utilized on the swan boat last ep in order to actually become the new ninja allies themselves. The day is win, everyone's happy, and this story arc draws to a close.

Sorry that took so long, folks. November's been a strange month so far and it's certain to get a lil weirder with this interview and Thanksgiving in the mix. Speaking of which; we've got a special Thanksgiving post that I'll aim to have up around Wednesday. See you then.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Friday the 13th November 2015

Guess what day it is? No. Not hump day, that's just silly. It's Friday the 13th. That sporadically occurring sub holiday of bad luck and hockey masked killing machines. As always I planed on making a post for this special occasion,. Do ya think I actually put any planing into it though? Did I dig out one of those weird Jason X novels from the bookshelf? Maybe I had the ambition to dig out the long box and find a couple comics. Nah, I didn't do a thing. Actually I thought about checking out a fan film or two but then I remembered how much I hate fan flicks. If I were craftier I'd simply blame this lack of preparation on the cold weather which begs for three naps a day but let's face it, I've been slacking off and playing video games. Still; a spark of something lit up earlier this morning. Plenty of sites do features for the Friday series whether it be the best kills or strangest moments. Very few ever report why the series matters to them. It's one thing to say you love a film series but another task entirely to reveal why it's such an important part of your life and identity.

I actually came across Friday the 13th a bit later than most horror series. I'd been a fan of Alien and Predator since age 8. Had my first visits from Freddy and Michael by 11. Hell, I'd even encountered Pinhead, Chucky, and the damn Candyman by then. Oddly enough I never caught Jason's exploits on TV until I was 16 or so. Believe the first entry I ever caught any amount of was The New Blood. After seeing bits & piece on the tube, I took to renting them from Blockbuster, somewhat out of order. Scratch that. Very out of Order. Eventually I picked up the From Crystal Lake to Manhattan box set and binged during a birthday week. I didn't quite understand it at the time but these trashy movies were working some magic on me. It wasn't anything so dramatic as an overnight conversion. No, it was a slow process that this franchise from something I felt like catching up on, to full on obsession. Very much like my horror movie collecting, I can't pinpoint the moment or reason for getting started, I simply realized one day that I'd started on that track.

Why then does the series matter so much to me? In truth I think it's because I see my own surroundings in these stories. No, I'm not some lakeside dwelling crazypants. I live ina moderate sized midwest town where everything's a little filthy, the people are more than a tad strange, and it's always a wise decision to never place your nightly ambitions any higher than getting wasted. To a certain extant that's all these movies are about. Crystal Lake, later renamed Forest Green, and back again is such a rotten place that's chock full of weird people. All the characters who visit generally don't aim very high. They're never those super proactive types who live every moment to the fullest. Most of them usually end up disappointed in their day, or camped out alone in some corner of the house.
Plenty of the other horror franchises have their focus set on stuff I never really identified with. Halloween, Elm Street, and Scream were much more for the well to do suburbia crowd. Candyman & Maniac Cop dwell in the dank city. Flicks like The Fog, Critters, or The Boogens had a more rural aspect to them. As far as small town life is concerned, most people turn to Stephen King's brand of drama where everybody knows everybody else which was never my reality. My world is one with crappy weather, lots of trees, strange people, and the prospect that a party may wrap up with me getting drunk on a couch by myself. That's the world I always see in these flicks, only tuned up to eleven with all the various town legends getting crushed down to one about a bullied child and his mother who get revenge on their surroundings. Oh, and a really pissed off paramedic with lousy parenting skills.
Perhaps my write up makes it all sound a little sad but I don't see it that way. I've lived my life in an environment that doesn't aim high so there's a certain comfort blanket effect to films which revel in the same atmosphere. It's part of the reason a movie like Blue Velvet can give me a big goofy grin.
Somehow I doubt I've sold my point completely. In all fairness the sandman's calling my name. Maybe it really is time for that 3rd nap of the day. Ya know what? Let's wrap this up with one of those lists like all the other FT13th articles with some power rankings.

Best to Worst: Friday the 13th

Part IV: The Final Chapter
No other installment better encapsulates the entirety of what this series has to offer. It's trashy, funny, bloody, features some decent tail, and a surprisingly effective plot-line about a boy battling a real life monster. I showed this one to my last...not so much girlfriend...girl I dated because if you don't enjoy this, then these movie's really aren't for you at all.
Favorite Kill: So many good ones to chose from but I think the extra cruel harpoon to the nuts get my vote for the top spot.

Part VI: Jason Lives
My personal favorite and just an outstandingly fun party flick. Grown up Tommy Jarvis (as played by Thom Matthews) is a hoot and nearly every kill is a classic.
Favorite Kill: Think I've gotta go with the double header in the RV. Jason pulverizes a girl in the bathroom, rams her head into the wall, before approaching the driver and jaming a knife into his skull. This results in a massive crash which Jason emerges from in a manner that makes Chuck Norris look like a bitch

Part III
The movie that really made the formula for this series. While the first two were closer to murder mysteries, this was classic dumb kids getting axed by crazed killer. The cheesy 3-D effects and origin of the hockey mask, not to mention the disco theme music only add to the fun.
Favorite Kill: Absolutely the head crush which sends a spring loaded eyeball flying at the screen. Terrific.

Freddy Vs Jason
Somehow this will be considered a controversial for reason I can't understand. People hate this one despite it being a total blast. I've seen so many articles bemoaning whether it veers to much towards one franchise or the other, or whining about who may or may not have won the conflict. I say just lay back and enjoy the show, oh and Monica Keena's sweater kittens.
Favorite Kill: Jason shoves his machete through a guys back repeatedly only to finish it off by folding his victim along with their bed, in half

Part I
The original and all encompassing blueprint for how to make a campground horror flick. It's very basic and fairly predictable yet solid enough to hold up all these years later.
Favorite Kill: Probably go with Kevin bacon taking an arrow through the throat. It's tough, gross, and I like to imagine he actually survives the ordeal and starts his life over as a southwestern handyman named Valentine.

Part V: A New Beginning
Another disliked entry which marked the second time Jason wasn't the killer. Year ago this would have ranked lower but over time it's won me over with its grand view of Forest Green and the freaks who live there.
Favorite Kill: Kills are a bit weaker here. Oddly enough I'm gonna go with the first real kill which goes to some punk who takes out the mentality handicapped guy, thous setting off a chain of violence throughout the town.

Part II
A step up from the first in both atmosphere and violence yet it falls behind in pacing.
Favorite Kill: The wheelchair bound counselor taking a machete to the face, forcing his chair to roll down the stairs is a brutal image that'll stick with you long after the movie wraps up.

Friday the 13th (2009)
So many people love to piss & moan over this reboot though there's still enough to make it worth checking out such as some good humor and possibly the best Jason.
Favorite Kill: Jason take the mean and efficient route here which makes a lot of the kills quick & straightforward. I'm quite a fan of the the machete to through the dock, into a topless girls head, lifting her up for one final boob shot. Classy.

Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan
Mostly silly garbage with psychic powers and floods of toxic waste. It does have the distinct advantage of being the most 80'entry in the series.
Favorite Kill: The head punch. It's the best.

Part VII: The New Blood
Essentially Carrie vs Jason. It's filled with awful characters and horrid dialogue. The kills could have been a saving grace if this wasn't the most heavily edited entry.
Favorite Kill: The sleeping bag bit would've been great if it hadn't been cut short.

Jason X
Jason goes to space and becomes something of a high tech wrestler. Incredibly dumb with terrible music. There is some good ankle and the biggest body count of the franchise to help it out a little.
Favorite Kill: Lot's of folks love the frozen face smash but I can't agree since I always wanted that blonde to make it just a little longer. Honestly don't have a favorite since you go a little body blind with this one.

Jason Goes to Hell
Jason's a body jumping hell worm with a fascination for shaving men. It's even worse than it sounds.
Favorite Kill. The pole through the tent is such a life saver since it puts an end to a horribly unappealing sex scene. Thank you, pole.

I can't really tell if this article made any sense at all cause god am I ever tired. We'll be back to normal coveridge in a couple days. For now, I'm gonna go downstairs, turn on the new blood and maybe indulge in that 3rd nap. Hope you guys are having a great 13th.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Shuriken Sentai Ninninger Episodes 24-27

Welcome to another ride on the Halloween leftover express. Your fellow passengers are comprised mainly of tootsie rolls and smarties. If you feel you must eat them please be sensible and devour whole families. No one wants to deal with candy orphans. The in transit entertainment will be a multi-episode story arc from Ninninger that while originating from summer just so happened to mesh quite well with the atmosphere of All Hallows Eve. Please remain seated as we recap the tale of the three great western youkai.

The reason I'd originally aimed at including this set of episodes during the Halloween countdown is that it deals with the classic universal monsters by which I mean Dracula, Frankenstein, and the Wolf Man. Of course they've received a sentai makeover in both looks and personality. Likewise, one of them has a personal connection to one of our heroes. Let's get to it.

Episode 24

First up on our tour of classic monsters is Frankenstein, and no we're not going to have that whole debate about whether that name refers to the doctor, his creation, both, or that the beasts name is actually Adam. The show calls him Frankenstein, just accept it.
Ole Frankie's supposed to collect fear but he's more interested in seeing the sights of Japan until he comes across an amusement park. The thought of other machines garnering more attention than him enrages the poor abomination as he's more robot than zombie in this incarnation. He uses a stop beam to fuck with the rides which accomplishes his fear gathering quota.
Of course this all had to happen on our ninja crew's day off. Fuuka's dad was having a mini emotional crisis upon the realization that his daughter was growing up and they weren't spending as much time together. Lucky for him, Nagi is remarkably adept at planing the perfect day for daddy daughter bonding and he enlists the rest of the team to help out.
And so the episode goes on with a very lighthearted tone as everyone battles the post modern Prometheus as discretely as possible in order for a dad to get one nice day with his kid. More than anything this tale establishes Nagi as even more of a nice guy and one of the more likable characters on the show. Solid fun though it sucks to see Fuuka miss out on the fighting.


Next up from the grand monster menagerie is everyone's favorite bloodsucker, Dracula. He's got one thing on his villainous mind, beautiful women, which means he's all about Fuuka. Our lil ninja girl is scouted by a casting agent while out shopping with her friends. Turns out he's looking for a leading lady for a vampire flick staring a male idol named Silver. Some of the other ninja doubt her ability to be an actress, Takaharu cheers her on in a clumsy way that seems like a challenge, and Kasumi theorizes that the situation merits investigation since Dracula is one of the three western youkai.
Everyone tags along to the audition to keep an eye out for the blood beast. Kasumi has a pretty easy time of it as she just pretends to be interested in acting. The boys however require disguises ranging from Kinji's butler outfit to Nagi & Yakumo cross-dressing. Believe it or not, men in drag is kind of a sentai tradition by this point. Seems like every season takes one shot at putting a guy in a dress for laughs. These two do a great job at making it funny by getting a little too worked up over competing for the role.
Faster than you can say “bloodsucker” girls start turning up with bite marks on their necks which leave them in a weird dream based coma. This particular version of Dracula feeds on dreams & ambition. Guy's so hungry, he doesn't even stop to check the gender of his victims and leave Kasumi plus the ladymen laid out. During all this we get further development with Fuuka deciding what she wants out of life. She admits to rashly jumping into this audition with no real goal towards being an actress. She actually gets a fairly solid pep talk from her brother. That sibling relationship is a big saving grace for Takaharu on this show so I was very glad to see it picked up once again.
Eventually the siblings along with Kinji reveal the casting agent to be Dracula in disguise (their original theory was Silver) with the aid of garlic dumplings. Fights ensue, the lord of night is destroyed, and Fuuka turns down further acting offers from Silver who's intent on making a ninja flick now.
Perhaps you can tell by the slightly longer write-up that this was a fine episode indeed. Characterization was spot-on, the humor was great, action was unfortunately slightly weaker than normal. Still; if every episode came across so smoothly, this series would have some great traction. Sadly, like every other time they win me over, it's time for another poor choice. This time in the form of a clip show.


Ninninger celebrates reaching the halfway point of the series by committing a classic televised sin known as the clip show. These are a regular occurrence in Sentai though they usually wait until later in a series thous providing a recap before the final push. I really hope this doesn't mean we have to put up with two this year.
Still; as far as an episode like this is concerned, I've seen worse. The basic idea is that the cousin or some such of the time-traveling cat monster from way back in episode eight pretends to be grandfather and puts the kids through a game show style ranking with opportunities for raising their aforementioned rank. There's some ok comedy here and the production team was nice enough to provide a new fight scene later in the episode but still, there's a bunch of old clips.
One item of special note is how the monster ranks Fuuka and Nagi as the two best ninjas. Furry bastard's got taste. Actually this only adds to my theory that these two are becoming favorites of the japanese fans. They keeps getting more quality moments in each episode and even the live shows put on for kids at malls & festivals seem to give them a lot of attention.


Tons of drama here. As you may have guessed, it's the Wolfman's turn at bat. He's also the monster responsible for murdering Kinji's family. Plenty of development on the Kinji front as he gets exiled from the dojo by the grumpy old man. Plus we learn that the real reason he wanted to study under the last ninja was for revenge and because he wanted the end shuriken to resurrect his dead family. Apparently this bauble can do that in addition to destroying the world. He also receives a rather nasty looking scratch from the Wolfman that I can only imagine will be a recurring plot point later on. Said wound is rather important as well since only youkai powers could harm old wolfy.
It's sort of odd how this show chose to make Wolfman the most powerful of the classic monsters. Usually his human element places him a bit lower on the totem pole but here he's removed from the mechanical failings of Frankenstein while dodging the womanizing of Dracula.
The main team has some shining moments of their own..when not getting smacked around by a werewolf that is. Fuuka and Nagi continue to be the heart of the team by watching over Kinji while he recovers from his injuries. Takaharu gets an outstanding scene when he confronts his grandfather about lacking faith in his students and generally being a scared old piss pot. The old grouch actually takes it to heart and reinstates Kinji as a full student in the end.
I didn't even touch on the whole mid-section where Kyuuemon tries to convince Kinji to take on youkai power in order to seek his revenge. Honestly there's too much to report on in this one episode. It's a huge tale with plenty of action, yet even it pails in comparison to the next story arc wherein we get a whole new style of villain along with some nice drama, and a few changes to how the team functions.

Ninninger continues to work towards being a special entry in the Sentai franchise. I wouldn't say it's there quite let but the slow climb in quality keeps going despite the occasional pitfall. I've already watched the next story arc which has some great developments. Those recaps will be up fairly soon now that I've gotten a few pieces of real life work outta the way. Before that, we've got another Friday the 13th to celebrate in style, and of course there will be a post of some kind for that. See you all then, and let us know if you've got any plans for the 13th.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Loot Crate October 2015 Time Unboxing

November may well be the only month exemplified by cleaning up the mess of a previous one while building up for another. Perhaps January ould stake such a claim as well though it's preperation comes in the form of praying for sunlight and warmth. As for the 11th month of the year, the poor thing's a middle child with a major identity crisis. Likewise you'll find that my several blog entries this month will exist in some time warp where jack-o-lanterns sit alongside stocking stuffers and peppermint snack cakes.. Usually our first post of November is a wrap up from Halloween but since there's still multiple leftover topics to cover I suppose the story will reveal itself over time. If you want a quick version it was a pretty decent Halloween. Not my best but a far cry above the worst. Let's call that a victory. Now onto the main point of the day, a Loot Crate unboxing where the theme, much like this month, is out of time.

This was not my subscription box for the month mind you. I'd been aiming to give Marvel Collector Corps a shot but the monthly paycheck came in too late to obtain that or any other box for that matter. After seeing a few unboxing videos I'm not too disappointed though. Their villain box wasn't bad though it was certainly something I can live without. My sister; however had been very intrigued by the September Loot Crate and decided to take up a subscription of her own. The LC crew made a few interesting decisions for this box by using a theme that blocked any potential for horror items in October while also reducing the number of items to focus on quality. Did those choices pay off? Let's find out.

The key reason for using this theme for this particular month was all the Back to the Future jazz about us reaching the point in time Marty visited during Part 2. Naturally like most folks who were either born/raised in the 80's the whole family is rather fond of these flicks. Even someone such as I who doesn't hold them in as high a regard still quote them frequently and enjoy fond memories of watching em countless times over. That somewhat lazy attitude towards the franchise doesn't prevent me from pointing out a fine collectible when I see one, and this 1/5 scale hoverboard replica is a nice piece. Made by Quantum Mechanix who've been gaining popularity thanks to item like their q-pop figures, this lil model doesn't miss a detail. Even the box is covered in that hyperactivie color scheme that the 80's imagined we'd still apply to anything and everything. Suppose that's yet another disappointingly failed prediction along with all those missing Jaws sequels, I want more killer sharks dammit!.

Also relating to Back to the Future is an exclusive Doc Brown Funko pop. There's already a regular doc pop out on the market but this one is a completely fresh sculpt. Different hair, pose, the works. Pretty awesome to see this much work put into such a figure since most pop exclusives usually revolve around small differences. Just look at last months Supernatural car if you'd like an example. Personally I adore the electricity emanating from the cables he's holding as no one does clear features quite like Funko.

With the McFly saga out of the way we move on to Doctor Who. My general distaste for this show is well documented so you'd be correct in assuming I had little interest in whatever this item may be. Lo and behold, someone found an item interesting enough to breach my whovian disdain. The sonic spork is....well, exactly what the title implies. The general design of the doctors primary gadget (the sonic screwdriver for those who don't know) gets a streamlined variation featuring a spork. It's brilliant and gives one a hankering for pinto beans.

Last yet far from least is an exclusive t-shirt featuring the titans of time-travel, Bill and Ted! Including these guys in more boxes would be one easy step to a better world. Unlike Back to the Future which was a big deal when I was a kid but faded later on, Bill and Ted was something I grew into. There's so much about the movie that's just plain stupid yet there's so many moments that are just right. My sister was nice enough to let me have the shirt in exchange for the pikachu hat she snatched up last month.

Of course there's also the token pin and little magazine but otherwise this was very much a quality over quantity box that continues Loot Crate's recent upward trend. Next on their agenda is a combat theme with items from Hunger Games, Capcom, Blizzard, and Fallout I think. It's not the most exciting sounding thing for me but my sister plans to continue her subscription. Another cool feature to note for anyone considering this service is they actually have an option for you to skip a crate you don't find interesting without canceling your subscription. Wish more boxes had that available.

That's all for now kiddies. We've got lots of stuff to cover leading up to Thanksgiving, especially once I finish cleaning up all those Halloween decorations and catching up on backlogged shows. The amount of CW material being crammed into each night can't be healthy. If the next post is all about timeless lover affairs and superheroes, you'll understand.