26 Dec 17

A belated Merry Christmas, one and all. I realize I missed the weekend's reviews, but I've got other things keeping me busy. Yet somehow I've mustered the willpower to put together this update and give you Chapter 35 of TBP. I'm now caught up to my current place in the story, so I'm going to have to actually get some writing done if I want to make next week's update. I'll try to get those Christmas reviews out by the weekend, better late than never. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 08:23:29

21 Dec 17

Six years have passed and Yasuko is ready to get her revenge in Chapter 1 of CeleKing2. One sixteen-year-old girl versus a globe-spanning empire. No problem, right? Look for some Christmas-themed reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 15:40:14

19 Dec 17

We've got betrayal and intrigue as more sinister plans go forward in Chapter 34 of TBP. Look for more CeleKing2 and some festive reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:39:08

17 Dec 17

The Internet has been set on fire. As I stand amidst the flames, what do I have to say? Well, find out in my review of Star Wars - Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. To accompany this review, I also have a trio of contemporary documentaries about the OT: The Making of Star Wars, SP FX: Special Effects - The Empire Strikes Back, and From Star Wars to Jedi: The Making of a Saga. Last but not least is the more all-encomapssing Empire of Dreams: The Story of the Star Wars Trilogy. Christmas is coming up soon, so next week I'm going to be thematic for a change. Might that include a little something that bridges this week to next? ^_^ We've also got more TBP and CeleKing2 on the docket. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:06:07

12 Dec 17

The Legion's on the march in Chapter 33 of TBP. The stuff hasn't hit the fan yet, but it's about to. Before that, though, the time for the Jedi to end draws nigh. (I'll be amused if Snoke is all paranoid about Luke restarting the Jedi and the truth is he doesn't want to make another stab at it, so spending all these resources trying to find him was a total waste. Hee hee.) Look for the big review coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:57:43

10 Dec 17

As I note in the first of these reviews, I actually dropped RvB after Season 10. Not because I was dissatisfied with it, but rather the opposite. After thinking the series found good places to end on Seasons 5 and 8, I decided Season 10 would be it. However, this review series got started when I decided to see what I'd been missing. What do I think? Find out in my review of the Chorus Trilogy: Season 11, Season 12 and Season 13. Next, we take a look at my favorite One Punch Man character in Volume 9, while the new arc really builds up steam in Volume 10. I would be concluding my RvB coverage next week, but there's a certain little movie that's coming out that's going to take precedence. Obscure thing. You've probably never heard of it. ^o^ And because it's Christmas the week after that, I figured I'd do some Christmas-themed reviews with some beloved holiday classics. Other than that, we've got more TBP at the ready. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:55:40

07 Dec 17

We return to the world of Erdi with a new generation of heroes and villains in the prologue of The Celestial Kingdom, Volume 2: Earth Angel. There's plenty of blood and intrigue ahead, so enjoy. In the nearer future, we've got reviews of the Chorus Trilogy of RvB coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 17:01:42

05 Dec 17

We've got brine and barnacles in the swashbuckling tale that is Chapter 32 of TBP. And once your head clears from all the grog, look for the debut of CeleKing2 coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:32:16

03 Dec 17

Are you familiar with the work of Monty Oum? Well, we got to see a glimpse of what he could do for Red vs. Blue's action sequences in Season 8 and now we get a fully animated parallel plotline in the Project Freelancer Saga, consisting of Season 9 and Season 10. And although it's actually supposed to occur between Seasons 6 and 7, we also have the mini-series "Relocated". For more intense action, we have the conclusion of Lord Boros' invasion in Volume 7 of One Punch Man and then see how Saitama stacks up to the World's Strongest Man in Volume 8. Next week we'll pick up the Chorus Trilogy, something that took me four years to do. (You only have to wait a week.) In other news, we've got more TBP and the debut of CeleKing2. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:15:34

28 Nov 17

If you hadn't gotten enough of Kyanopolitan politics and forum appearances tinged with supernatural shenanigans, witness the next step in preparing the sacrifice of blood in Chapter 31 of TBP. The stage is almost set and soon the curtain will rise. In the meantime, look for more reviews. We'll be covering the Project Freelancer Saga of RvB, featuring actiony goodness by the late, great Monty Oum. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 14:13:18

26 Nov 17

Having concluded The Blood Gulch Chronicles last week, our coverage of Red vs. Blue continues into The Recollection, which adds more dramatic writing to the story. It starts with the mini-series "Recovery One" and goes on through Season 6, Season 7 and Season 8. Meanwhile things are heating up in One Punch Man with Volume 5 and Volume 6. Look for more TBP coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:20:21

23 Nov 17

Happy Thanksgiving

As Junior Mascot #1 is happy to remind us, it's Thanksgiving. What do you have to be thankful for? How about the successful conclusion of CeleKing1? We bring the adventure of Batista and Masako to a close with the epilogue and for your reference, there are the appendices with the character glossary, the map of Erdi, and guides to the Celestials' military ranks and the mercenaries' ranks. If the end has you feeling lonesome, fear not. In two weeks, we'll be picking the story up with the new generation in CeleKing2. In the meantime, look forward to reviews of The Recollection of RvB. Try not to get trampled on Black Friday in the meantime. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:00:36

21 Nov 17

The Sanctuary's had a rough time of it lately, but maybe things have settled down a bit. Find out in Chapter 30 of TBP. Look for the conclusion of CeleKing1 and more reviews later in the week. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:59:46

19 Nov 17

We continue our coverage of Red vs. Blue, wrapping up The Blood Gulch Chronicles with Season 4, Season 5, and the "Out of Mind" mini-series. We also have Volume 3 and Volume 4 of the One Punch Man manga. Next week we'll cover The Recollection. We've got more TBP and the conclusion of CeleKing1. Regarding the latter, I doubt I'll have the county-level map ready in time, but I'll see what I can do. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:27:26

14 Nov 17

The Battle of the Sanctuary continues in Chapter 29 of TBP. You think we're due for things to turn around right about now? Well, read on to find out. Look for reviews this weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 14:01:37

12 Nov 17

You ever wonder why we're here? We enter a new series that'll cover the next several weeks. First, we're going to be looking at the two heavy-hitter series from Rooster Teeth, Red vs. Blue and RWBY. We start with Season 1, Season 2, and Season 3 of Red vs. Blue. The other side of the coin is the One Punch Man manga with Volume 1 and Volume 2. Look for more of the same each week until Episode VIII comes out. Of course, we've got more TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 15:35:10

09 Nov 17

Things looked pretty bad for our heroes when last we saw them, so I guess the bad guys are free to do their victory lap, huh? Find out for yourself in Chapter 24 of CeleKing1. Two more weeks to the end. (I really need to finish labeling the counties on the Erdi map.) We've still got RvB and OPM coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 17:11:22

07 Nov 17

Lother Pendragon really knew how to bring up his kids. We see the products of his child-rearing in Chapter 28 of TBP. Look for more CeleKing1 and punchy reviews in the coming days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:34:38

05 Nov 17

Halloween may have passed, but we still have a little scariness left as we mark the end of Allhallowtide with some religious horror (to one degree or another). We have Exorcist II: The Heretic, Chuck Norris' Hellbound, The Church, and Harry Potter as the Devil in 2013's Horns. Also, as a bit of a change of pace, we have Volume 4 of Yakumo-san wa Ezuke ga Shitai. (No, we don't have Rui possessed by Pazuzu or anything like that to make it thematic.) For the next several weeks, I'm going to be covering some of the works of Rooster Teeth, namely Red vs. Blue and RWBY along with the One Punch Man manga. We've got more TBP and CeleKing1 on the way, so look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:04:17

31 Oct 17

Happy Halloween, everyone. And for those of you who don't like Halloween, Happy Reformation Day. (500 years! Whoo!) And if you don't like Halloween or the Reformation, then... Happy Tellus Tuesday. Quite unintentionally, we've got goblins and ghosts of sorts in Chapter 27 of TBP. I mean, shoot, the bad guy's name is Ghél. You can't be much more on point than that. Going through Allhallowtide, we'll be taking a look at some religious horror this weekend, so be on the lookout for that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:21:33

29 Oct 17

Halloween is almost upon us and we bring our October reviews to a close, first with a trio of anthology style films: 1945's Dead of Night, 1963's Black Sabbath, and Twilight Zone: The Movie. We then lighten the mood with the more comedic Carry On Screaming! And now, as John Cleese would say, for something completely different. It's been out for a while in the States, but it's a new release here in Japan that I was prompted to go see due to positive word of mouth in contrast to disappointing ticket sales. It's Blade Runner 2049. I'll have to rewatch the original when I'm back in the States and add it to the reviews. I may even go to the effort of going through the theatrical cut (ugh), the director's cut, the final cut and the workprint just to be thorough. Moving on, we'll have some religious horror next week as is my custom. I believe I have just enough films in the backlog to make a week of it. We'll also be continuing TBP, of course. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:07:58

27 Oct 17

Sorry this is late, but I just didn't have the energy to get the update out last night. (In case you were wondering, Thursdays have been ending four hours later for me recently and it really disrupts my mojo.) Anyway, it's been a long time coming, but Batista and Masako finally make it to Lingmu in Chapter 23 of CeleKing1. Everything's gonna be alright now, right? Right? Come on, what else would you expect in this story? ^_^ We've still got reviews on the horizon to round out our October graveyard smash. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:20:31

24 Oct 17

You ever thought about what you'd do if you could confront a teacher you didn't like back in the day? Well, Gareth has a somewhat extreme take on that in Chapter 26 of TBP. We've got more CeleKing1 on the way plus a mashup of reviews this weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:20:37

22 Oct 17

I'm a cat person myself (as if you couldn't tell), but this is a day for puppies. Well, sort of. We go from vampires to werewolves with a selection of films from the Howling series, starting with the original The Howling, followed by Howling II: ...Your Sister is a Werewolf, The Marsupials: Howling III (which I index by its original title "Howling III" to keep the sequels together), Howling IV: The Original Nightmare, and Howling V: Rebirth. If you want the other three movies in the series, you're going to have to wait until next year. We've got one more week of October reviews to go. I was wondering if I should do ghosts or zombies, but I think I'll do a grab bag of films for the finale with a focus on anthology films. We've got more TBP and CeleKing1 as well, so look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:29:15

17 Oct 17

It's a day for playing long odds in Chapter 25 of TBP. You be the judge as to whether "It's not about winning or losing. It's how you play the game" applies here or not. Look for werewolves on the weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:15:23

15 Oct 17

James Woods makes yet another appearance this week in John Carpenter's Vampires, kicking off a selection of reviews of films about, well, vampires. We also have Near Dark, which is like a mini Aliens cast reunion, The Hunger for yuri fans, Interview with the Vampire for yaoi fans, and Vampire's Kiss with daffy ol' Nic Cage. And since we've covered vampires, it only seems appropriate that we should do werewolves next. Also, we've got more TBP coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:49:30

12 Oct 17

A nice little hidey hole seems comfy and safe, but you may not be as secure as you think, as our heroes find out in Chapter 22 of CeleKing1. Six more weeks and it'll be a wrap. Now, if the upcoming reviews were mummy themed, that would make for a good segue, but we're doing vampires, so feh. Look forward to them anyway. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 16:43:14

10 Oct 17

Seth Pendragon has been suppressing his hot-blooded nature this long, but now it's time to jump into action in Chapter 24 of TBP. Time to show Big Brother what for. We've still got CeleKing1 and vampires to come. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:40:53

08 Oct 17

Long live the new flesh. We continue our October reviews with the master of body horror David Cronenberg. Not all of these films are strictly horror, but they are creepy and for the Halloween season, creepy will suffice. Going in chronological order of release, we've got The Brood, Scanners, Videodrome, Naked Lunch, and eXistenZ. All are fairly messed up. Enjoy. Besides using Cronenberg as a bridge between last week and this week, we've also got a James Woods connection going on, so let's continue the trend and cover those perennial favorites of the Halloween season: vampires. On the story front, we've got more TBP and CeleKing1, so be on the lookout for that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:57:30

03 Oct 17

When you put up a wall, that's generally your way of letting folks know you're a bit choosy about who gets in, but there are other folks who see a wall as a challenge. Prince Cain is one such person and he's going to be acting on his anti-wall stance in Chapter 23 of TBP. Apparently he's got no truck with "Good fences make good neighbors." Of course, he's not a very good neighbor, so I guess he wouldn't like a good fence. Anyway, we've got some of the horrors of Cronenberg coming up this weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:21:26

01 Oct 17

Well, I was just going to post some more 80s movies that I like, but then I realized that it's already October, which means I have to post horror and thriller films in keeping with the spirit of the season. I compromised by picking up any 80s movies that fit the bill. We start with two Stephen King films: Cat's Eye and The Dead Zone. Maybe not exactly horror, but there are creepy elements that make them good October fare. Next is more of a horror-comedy Little Shop of Horrors, with the 1960 original tossed in as an omake. We also have the 1988 remake of The Blob and something you'd probably never see coming, the Indonesian horror film Lady Terminator (as in a lady who terminates, not a terminator of ladies). Using The Dead Zone as my bridge, I'll be following this up with a selection of films by David Cronenberg, the master of body horror and general freakiness. Looks for more TBP as well. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:38:38

28 Sep 17

When you've got a lot on your mind, you'll often just lie there wide awake. As you might imagine, things aren't going to stay quiet much longer in Chapter 21 of CeleKing1. Look for reviews this weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 14:45:23

26 Sep 17

Three-legged dog walks into a saloon, goes up to the bar and tells the bartender, "I'm looking for the man who shot my paw." It's like that. Only in reverse. Or something. The guy this cycle is named after is back on the scene. Same game, different players. It's Chapter 22 of TBP. Look for more CeleKing1 and some more obscure 80s films in the coming days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:38:50

24 Sep 17

In a perfect universe, I'd be able to spend my life with the 80s on a loop, but in lieu of that, I'll just have to settle for watching some of the fine pieces of 80s cinema that defined my childhood. The last couple weeks we had swashbucklers, so now it's time for a "swishbuckler" in Zorro: The Gay Blade. We also have two landmark films in the development of CG special effects: TRON and The Last Starfighter, which also have a common theme of video games becoming real (though in different ways). Next, one of the all-time greats when it comes to big, dumb, amazing, beautiful action movies: Commando. Lastly, because nobody leaves this place without singin' the blues, Adventures in Babysitting. And because I'm having so much fun, I may just do another 80s week to follow up on this. We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1 coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:26:23

19 Sep 17

You can tell where a person really stands when the chips are down. How much honor do you think we'll find in a disgraced former Templar? Loads, I'm sure. Find out in Chapter 21 of TBP. In other news, there's fun from the 80s coming up this weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:17:06

17 Sep 17

We've got more fun with the Musketeers with the 1948 version of The Three Musketeers, the 1939 version of The Man in the Iron Mask and the 1998 version as well, plus the non-canonical new generation film featuring a swashbuckling Maureen O'Hara, At Sword's Point. And only loosely related because it involves French swashbuckling and because I mistakenly thought it was another of Dumas' works, the 1934 version of The Scarlet Pimpernel. This version of The Scarlet Pimpernel gets an homage in one of my favorite films, so I've decided to feature that and some other goodies from the 80s next time. Also, more TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:25:51

14 Sep 17

It's been a long, hard road. Wouldn't it be nice to take things easy for a change? Maybe we'll get exactly that in Chapter 20 of CeleKing1. We're getting closer to the end. Seems like yesterday we were just kicking off this journey. Anyway, we've still got reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 14:37:22

12 Sep 17

You can't make a long trip without supplies, but when you'd rather not be seen, it presents a bit of a problem. We see how our gang handles the issue in Chapter 20 of TBP. Look for more CeleKing1 and swashbuckling reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:56:44

10 Sep 17

There's one mobile game I've started playing since acquiring a tablet that I didn't feature last week, so now it gets to enjoy the spotlight without being overshadowed by Fire Emblem. It's the Sega RPG Hortensia Saga, which currently doesn't appear to have any prospects for an English release. Since the game has a fantasy French setting, I thought it would be appropriate to feature the Three Musketeers. We've got Richard Lester's Musketeer trilogy for your: The Three Musketeers, The Four Musketeers: Milady's Revenge and Return of the Musketeers. And to round out our selection, rather than take another Musketeer movie, I decided to go with another film by Richard Lester, 1976's Robin and Marian. I think I'll go on and give you the other Musketeer movies in the backlog next week. We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1, so look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:04:30

05 Sep 17

There's a lot of dread built up around what lies south of the River Pendragon. Do you think there's anything to it? Well, you're about to find out in Chapter 19 of TBP. And you can comfort yourself with the thought that that's where Cassandra and company are headed. We've still got reviews with an undetermined theme coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:46:28

03 Sep 17

Last week I gave you some sequels before I actually showed you the reviews for the movies that came first. Well, it's time to remedy that. We've got the brilliant but mind-numbingly obtuse 2001: A Space Odyssey, Chinatown and The Guns of Navarone. And because I just recently beat the game, I've got a review of Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia and to accompany it, I've also got the mobile release Fire Emblem Heroes, which I've been playing for well over a month now. Next week I'll cover the other mobile game I've added to my roster, Hortensia Saga. I have yet to decide what's going to fill the other review slots. I'm sure I'll think of something. We've got more TBP coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:24:38

31 Aug 17

We've got a big showdown brewing in Chapter 19 of CeleKing1. Wouldn't you know it? Batista's the last one to find out about these things. We've still got reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 15:17:40

29 Aug 17

Two weeks ago I left you with a pretty big cliffhanger and now it's time to pick up the story where we left off in Chapter 18 of TBP. We've got some big reveals this time 'round, so get psyched for that. Also, look for more CeleKing1 and reviews on the horizon. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:24:38

27 Aug 17

So the theme this week is sequels. In particular, these are sequels that are vastly overshadowed by their predecessors. We start with the sequels to two films already featured on the site: Futureworld for Westworld and The Cell 2. We follow it with three sequels whose predecessors haven't shown up here yet: 2010: The Year We Make Contact, Force 10 From Navarone and The Two Jakes. As you might imagine, featuring the earlier films for this trio will be on the agenda for next week, plus whatever I decide to go with for the other two slots. We've got more TBP and CeleKing1 on the story front, so look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:32:55

22 Aug 17

Well, our heroes have been thrown a curveball and the villains continue to get their ducks in a row with Chapter 17 of TBP. Blood and death are sure to follow, but I have a feeling that's part of the reason you're here. In other news, incongruous sequels and other oddities on the horizon. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:47:13

20 Aug 17

We add to our Bond coverage with two pieces from Pierce Brosnan's run as 007: Tomorrow Never Dies and Die Another Day. I know Goldeneye is the obvious choice, but I haven't had the opportunity to rewatch it recently. Next up, we've got Volume 23 of Attack on Titan and Volume 2 and Volume 3 of Yakumo-san wa Ezuke ga Shitai. Plumbing the depths of my backlog, I think I'll post some sequels to features next time (and probably some other random bits to fill in the gaps). We'll see what I come up with. Also, look for more TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:04:53

17 Aug 17

You know, now that I think about it, given her personality, Junior Mascot #2 would be more appropriate to represent Batista's other pursuer rather than Nestor. Well, too late for that now. It's time for Chapter 18 of CeleKing1. I've managed to acquire some more manga I hope to put in the reviews coming up, so look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:02:44

15 Aug 17

While I'm here recovering from going up, over and around mountains, our heroes get to spend some time underground in Chapter 16 of TBP. Personally, I think this chapter has one of my better cliffhangers. See what you think of it. Also, we've got more CeleKing1 and reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 08:37:33

13 Aug 17

I said I was going to give you Bond movies, so here are some Bond movies. This week we look at the two outings of Timothy Dalton as 007: 1987's The Living Daylights and 1989's License to Kill. We then go on to manga with Volume 2 and Volume 3 of Twilight Princess. We also have Volume 1 of Yakumo-san wa Ezuke ga Shitai. I left the title untranslated (though with Hepburn romanization rather than the Kunrei romanization you see on the cover) as there's currently no official English release (and honestly, not much prospect of one), but if you're curious, the title basically means "Mrs. Yakumo Wants to Feed Him". Some red lights may be going off in your head if you can read enough to catch the "28-year-old widow x hungry 16-year-old high school baseballer", but, believe me, the series is entirely harmless and quite sweet (at the moment, at any rate). Next week I'll have a couple of the Brosnan Bond films plus more manga, hopefully. We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:21:31

08 Aug 17

That terrible sound you just heard was the Sierra hitting the fan. Things just got real in Chapter 15 of TBP. If you thought things were real before, now they're really realer. For real. Yes, well, all kidding aside, the brewing conflict kicks off in earnest this week. We've still got some reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:34:42

06 Aug 17

We round out our look at my recent airplane viewing material first with a trio of animated films: the acclaimed Your Name and The Red Turtle from last year, as well as the somewhat older The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. As part of a nostalgia trip, I also watched the first Gremlins and for no other reason than mild curiosity, 007's most recent outing, Spectre. I may actually cover some more Bond films in the near future. I have several reviews in the queue, so it's worth considering. My plan to get more Inuyasha manga reviews written while I had my collection close at hand didn't come about, but I do have some new manga I should get out in the near future. As far as story content goes, look for more TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:17:18

03 Aug 17

That sound you hear at the door may very well be opportunity knocking. We check in with the man who's made it his mission to make Batista's life miserable in Chapter 17 of CeleKing1. Be on the lookout for reviews involving turtles and time travel in the coming days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:11:06

01 Aug 17

Oh, hey, you remember the people who are ostensibly our main characters? Yeah, well, we're back to them in Chapter 14 of TBP. We've also got more CeleKing1 and reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:36:47

30 Jul 17

I'm sure you all have been longing for those reviews I didn't give you last week. We start with a trio of recent releases: xXx: The Return of Xander Cage, John Wick, Chapter 2, and Spider-Man: Homecoming. Because I had reviews of prior entries sitting in my backlog, I also present the original xXx and John Wick. I'll be following this next week with the remaining five films I saw while bounding across the Pacific, including one that's been all the buzz here in Japan. Look for more TBP and CeleKing1 as well. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:30:28

25 Jul 17

Sorry I didn't get last week's reviews up. I wasn't going to get them done before I left the States and definitely wasn't in any condition or mood to do them after the 20-plus-hour return journey and I didn't really feel like it yesterday either, so here we are. I'm just going to pick up that thread this weekend and go on from there. And back to our regularly scheduled programming, I realize "The Stranger Returns" is the title for Chapter 22, but it applies here in Chapter 13 of TBP as the man this cycle of the Tellus Arc is named after makes an appearance. Look for those belated reviews this weekend. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:52:33

21 Jul 17

I realize that I've been using Junior Mascot #2 to represent Nestor, but I felt like putting the mascot front and center to celebrate her triumphant return. Have I taken enough pics for her to give us coverage until Christmas? Probably not, but you might as well enjoy the moment. Speaking of Nestor, we get to see if all his well-laid plans gets him what he's after in Chapter 16 of CeleKing1. We've still got reviews on the horizon. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 03:56:47

19 Jul 17

Forktongue's been established as quite the slippery old snake. Well, you can see if that might be somewhat literal in Chapter 12 of TBP. Look for more CeleKing1 and reviews in the coming days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 02:30:14

17 Jul 17

If you've ever wondered where Sailor Moon learned about transformation sequences and stock speeches to monsters of the week with dumb villain plans, look no further than everyone's favorite warrior of love, Cutey Honey. We start off with Cutey Honey Flash, a bit of incursion where part of the inspiration for Sailor Moon wound up following its successor's example, plus the theatrical short that fits somewhere in the middle of the story. We also have the ealier OAV series New Cutey Honey, which is more in line with the original, and the madcap Re: Cutie Honey courtesy of Hideaki Anno and Gainax. We then wind things down with Volume 7 of the GATE manga, which is as far as I've collected thus far. For the next two weeks, I'm going to be bringing you my in-flight movies to and from Japan, plus a new release or two. We've got more TBP and CeleKing1 coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 06:14:32

11 Jun 17

It may not be Sunday, but we're going to church in Chapter 11 of TBP. Keep an eye out for reviews later in the week. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:05:26

09 Jul 17

Last week I reviews the TV series, but let's look further back to the original short film of Little Witch Academia and its feature-length sequel Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade. And we don't stop there with the witchcraft. Just yesterday I saw the new release Mary and the Witch's Flower from the director of The Secret World of Arriettyand When Marnie Was There. There's also another recently wrapped TV series, the Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? gaiden Sword Oratoria. Lastly, we have Volume 6 of the GATE manga. As for next week, I haven't quite decided yet. I've got a plane ride ahead of me and I may just go with the movies I see there. Look for more TBP as well. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:42:51

06 Jul 17

When the chips are down, sometimes you just need someone to take care of you. Our heroes could use a hand in Chapter 15 of CeleKing1 and they might just get it. The week after next I'll be back in the States, so I'm going to need to take lots of pictures of the mascot to cover these story posts until I see her again in December. In other news, we've got reviews coming up later. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:27:27

04 Jul 17

For instant fun, just add pirates. It's one of the fundamental rules of the universe or something. (Sadly, no, there will be no battle for supremacy between the pirates and the decidedly ninja-esque Umbriel.) Here's Chapter 10 of TBP with more conspiracy afoot. More CeleKing1 and some witchy reviews are still coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:10:58

03 Jun 17

I'd planned on getting these out to you last week, but better late than never, right? I have a couple new teasers for you, both If Arc stories. The first is The Second Trident War, an alternate universe sequel to The Trident War Chronicles in which the Zephyrian expedition to the Darklands fails and Carpos becomes the King of Notos. The second is Pendragon, Inc. in which the story of The Brothers Pendragon is reimagined as modern-day corporate warfare, but still with Elves and Dragons and such (inspired entirely by one time when I described Cassandra as Seth's Elven secretary). The next chapter of the original TBP is coming up tomorrow with CeleKing1 and reviews following after. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 15:22:37

02 Jul 17

As I mentioned last week, one of the reasons (or "triggers" if you will) for checking out Studio Trigger's work from last year is because I've been watching this year's offering, Little Witch Academia, which wrapped last week. Other works from the spring lineup include the much anticipated Season 2 of Attack on Titan and Granblue Fantasy: The Animation. For manga, we've got Volume 5 of GATE and Volume 9 of Inuyasha. Next week I plan on featuring the other two works in the Little Witch Academia canon. We continue TBP and CeleKing1 and that thing I hinted at last time may or not be ready in the interim. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:14:45

27 Jun 17

If you can live for hundreds of years, what would you do with your time? Sponsor at-risk children, promote an ecologically sustainable community and act as a neighborhood watchman? Sure, why not? That seems to be the line of thinking of a new character introduced in Chapter 9 of TBP. If only more Elves were as interested in giving back to the community... In other news, look for reviews later in the week and maybe something else in between. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:49:42

25 Jun 17

I've got a list of series I mean to see and one of them from last year was Space Patrol Luluco, which then led me to another series from Studio Trigger that somehow slipped by my radar, Kiznaiver. The Little Witch Academia TV series will be wrapping soon and I thought I'd get these precursors out first. Moving forward on the manga front, we have Volume 4 of GATE as well as Volume 7 and Volume 8 of Inuyasha. We'll have some more series that have been wrapping recently next week plus more manga. We've also got the latest chapter of TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:01:11

22 Jun 17

When a well-dressed individual stops by your place for a drink, you might want to be on your guard. Real-world bounty hunting relies more on talking to people than dramatic shooutouts, so we get to see some of that in Chapter 14 of CeleKing1. If you ask me, that sort of thing should scare you more if you're on the run. We've still got a mix of anime and manga reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:57:37

20 Jun 17

Boy meets girl in Chapter 8 of TBP. Nothing says fate like a chance encounter among the bodies of your dead companions. Fun, right? Anyway, we've got more CeleKing1 and reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 15:10:33

18 Jun 17

Recently got a pack of the first seven volumes of the GATE manga and I've been slowly reading through them, so I thought it was a fine time to get some reviews out there. We've got Volume 1, Volume 2 and Volume 3 to get the ball rolling and we also bring back Inuyasha with Volume 5 and Volume 6. I was holding off in IY reviews because I'd only written reviews up through Volume 12 before coming to Japan, but now I'm just a few weeks away from a brief return Stateside, so maybe I can catch up a bit while I'm back and move things along a little more (before that six-month window closes and I have to read through them all over again). Next week I'll be mixing a little anime and manga together. The latest season is winding down, so before that I have a couple items from last year I missed first time around. We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 14:27:16

13 Jun 17

Have you ever known someone who's a terrible judge of character? (Or worse, do you happen to be one of those people yourself?) Well, we're going to see one such person in Chapter 7 of TBP. I'm sure you can imagine how well that'll go. And on that cheery note, look for some manga reviews by the end of the week. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:52:21

11 Jun 17

These reviews have been a long time overdue, but let's kick things off with one of the greatest action movies of all time (and definitely one of the highlights of 80s cinema): Die Hard. The following years brought us the sequels Die Hard 2 and Die Hard with a Vengeance, which have been in a bitter competition among the fans as to which one is the better successor to the original. I wish I could say the new millennium brought some competition, but it seems the fans are pretty well united on what they think of Live Free or Die Hard and A Good Day to Die Hard. It ain't complimentary, let me say that. I'm thinking about doing some manga reviews next week. In the meantime, there'll be more TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:27:23

08 Jun 17

Well, Batista and Masako have been pretty lucky ever since they left Arroyo, but how much longer is that luck going to hold out? Place your bets, ladies and gents, and see for yourself in Chapter 13 of CeleKing1. Reviews are still on the way. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:22:17

06 Jun 17

At one point I had cut today's chapter from the story, then I realized that you'd have next to zero investment in the Sanctuary later in the story without at least a little establishment first. So let's take a look at this fortress of the saints in Chapter 6 of TBP. We've also got the latests chapter of CeleKing1 and everyone's favorite yippee-ki-yaying melon farmer coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:59:18

04 Jun 17

This week we've got courtroom dramas for your reading pleasure. Two of them star the great Spencer Tracy in the early years and near the end of his illustrious career. We have Fritz Lang's Fury and 1961's Judgment at Nuremberg. Speaking of the latter, we have another historical drama in the form of I Accuse. The 1957 adaptation of 12 Angry Men is another heavy-hitter and we close with a more recent example, 1990's Presumed Innocent. Next week I've decided to post my long overdue reviews of the Die Hard series (though you may argue that waiting until around Christmas time would be more appropriate). We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1 scheduled, so look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 08:06:48

30 May 17

King Seth is missing his Girl Friday in Chapter 5 of TBP. Where do you think she's gotten to? Probably not going to find the answer this week. In other news, coming soon, fun with courtroom drama. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:31:09

28 May 17

While there are several layers of interconnection in our selection for the week, the one common thread is the music of the talented Yoko Kanno. We start with the OAV series Macross Plus (which helps me forget the disappointment of Macross Delta) and from there we have two of my favorite anime series, The Vision of Escaflowne and Cowboy Bebop. We also have the theatrical retelling of Escaflowne and the interquel film Cowboy Bebop: Knockin' on Heaven's Door. Unless I do some unexpected marathoning between now and next time, I'm thinking about covering some courtroom drama for next week. And on the story front, we've got more TBP. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:52:41

25 May 17

Do you ever feel like you're being watched? Well, a new pursuer is about to toss his stylish hat into the ring in Chapter 12 of CeleKing1. Will he have better luck than the Lopez Sisters? We'll see. In the meantime, look for some anime reviews in the next couple days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:54:52

23 May 17

Do you like cryptic cabals convocating to spout cryptic mumbo-jumbo that may or may not foreshadow the entirety of the secret behind-the-scenes plot that you won't catch until a second go-through? If so, then you're in luck. We've got Chapter 4 of TBP for you today. Surely there can't be anything plot-relevant going on here. Nothing to see. Just planning the semiannual ice cream social. ^o^ And we've still got more CeleKing1 and some reviews bound by the common thread of the music of Yoko Kanno (or as much as I can manage in the time limits). Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:24:25

21 May 17

I've got a variety for you this week. We start with a couple of new additions courtesy of my visit to the Ghibli Museum during Golden Week, the graphic novel The Journey of Shuna and the animated short Mei and the Kittenbus. I've been watching a lot of anime lately since Golden Week and while I'm getting the slow weekly drip-drip of new series, I'm also starting to binge some old favorites as well. More will follow in the coming weeks, but we kick things off with the Record of Lodoss War OAV series. (I may decide to revisit the TV series as well in the near future, but I'm not nearly as enthusiastic about that prospect.) Those of you following my Gab feed know that I ended up beating the game accidentally two weeks ago, and though I'm barely scraping a 30% completion rate, I've decided to go ahead and post my review of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which should have Zelda fans everywhere jumping for joy. Lastly, because I like to have at least five items for review, I randomly picked 300 because I like to fight in shade and then dine in Hell once I'm done, I guess. As for the centerpiece of next week's reviews, look up the song "Dance of Curse". ^_^ We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:26:53

16 May 17

Someone's sneaking around in Chapter 3 of TBP. We've got a grab-bag of reviews on the horizon yet. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:18:03

14 May 17

Our theme this week is idol-based anime. We've got the contentious Macross Delta and both Season 1 and Season 2 of THE iDOLM@STER CINDERELLA GIRLS. By American standards, it'd be considered one season with a mid-season hiatus between them, but the two are different enough for me to preserve the separation. We've also got a new release, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. (Yes, I know it came out last week in the States, but it just came out here in Japan.) And for funsies, let's pretend the backstory of the film is detailed in 1984's Starman. We've got more TBP and a mix in store for reviews, to include Breath of the Wild. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 13:16:13

11 May 17

Batista and Masako get a bit of a breather this week in Chapter 11 of CeleKing1. We've still got reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:03:51

09 May 17

A girl and her Dragon, what can be better? Or is it a Dragon and his girl? Decide for yourself in Chapter 2 of TBP. Look for more CeleKing1 and anime reviews in the coming days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:34:19

06 May 17

Here are the reviews I was supposed to deliver last week. We connect George C Scott to Paul Newman in 1961's The Hustler and from there we have the PI film Harper and one of his collaborations with Robert Redford, The Sting. We then bridge to Robert Redford (as I haven't seen the obvious choice of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid for review purposes yet) with 2001's Spy Game. Lastly (and definitely least), we have a film that I feel Newman should regret more than The Silver Chalice, that blight from Pixar, Cars. (Though, in its defense, it's not Cars 2.) We're going to break the chain next week and review some anime and stuff. We've also got more TBP and CeleKing1. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 06:14:24

02 May 17

We get a glimpse of medieval CSPAN in Chapter 1 of TBP. Luckily for you guys, there's no unabridged transcript of the filibuster on the motion to appropriate 7% of the tax revenue toward improving the roads between Brodheim and Ostvin. We've still got reviews to come. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 17:34:33

01 May 17

I know I haven't posted the week's movie reviews and those are just going to have to wait until the end of this week. For some reason I imagined myself spending three or four leisurely hours winding down after each day's adventure rather than crashing and burning hard night after night until I finally dragged my beaten and bruised carcass back to home base. But enough about me.

Tempting as it is to not do anything while I recover, I can't fail to make note of International Ayame Jellybean Day. The plan was to update the gallery, something that's long overdue, but that will have to wait until later in the week. In the meantime, you're looking at the last picture I took of the mascot before making my way to the Orient. Everyone raise your glass to the one and only Ayame Jellybean.

While you're enjoying the festive atmosphere, look forward to more TBP and those reviews I missed last week. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 02:17:35

27 Apr 17

The two ladies featured this week would probably like to have a convenient hidey hole like that mascot, but, alas, there's no escaping their terrible experiences and now they get to dig all that right back up on pain of unspecified unpleasantness. It's Chapter 10 of CeleKing1. Look for Paul Newman in the next couple days. (I'm crazy enough to still try to get updates out even as I embark on my Golden Week adventuring.) Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:06:49

25 Apr 17

It is my great pleasure to present the debut of The Brothers Pendragon, starting with the prologue. It has been nearly 20 years since I jotted down the first notes that would develop into this story. Ten years ago, I launched this website with the prequel short story "The Stranger" as a teaser. I wrote and serialized the entirety of The Trident War Chronicles over the course of seven years just to get warmed up, I'm working on my own adaptation of the Arthurian mythos to bolster the canon, and now I can finally bring you the story I've been wanting to tell for so long. I certainly hope it proves to be worth all this anticipation.

In other news, we've got more of the recently completed CeleKing1 coming up plus some Paul Newman reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:24:09

23 Apr 17

Using my review of The Formula as a bridge from Marlon Brando to George C Scott, we now look at a selection of films featuring he of that great gravelly voice. It goes without saying that the top of the list is the magnificent Patton. We also have directorial outing for Scott in 1972's Rage. Lastly, three films where he isn't the main character but features prominently: Anatomy of a Murder (perhaps my favorite courtroom drama), Firestarter and Taps. We'll be using 1961's The Hustler to transition from George C Scott to Paul Newman next week so there are some films of his besides The Silver Chalice (though one that I'll be including is worse in my view). On the story front, we'll be debuting The Brothers Pendragon and continuing CeleKing1, which I happened to finish today. Look forward to that. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:34:03

18 Apr 17

It's hard to believe, but The Trident War Chronicles has been running on this site for nearly seven years. I had to spend several minutes in the archives tracking down when we started. On 19 Jul 2010, I posted Solon's prologue of TTWC1 and though updates were sporadic at first (as almost all updates were back in those days), the series eventually became a weekly feature. One of the main reasons I wanted to post the series was as a warmup for The Brothers Pendragon, which we will be starting next week. It's hard to believe the series has been a part of this site's lifecycle for as long as it has, especially when compared to the Knight of Gladius series, which I consider to be the flagship of the Tellus Arc.

Anyway, let's get on with the show. The Bringer of the Red Rain meets with his finale in Akasame's epilogue of TTWC3. We finish off the book with the afterword and have all the appendices: the afterword, the species guide, and the maps of Notos, Zephyr and the Darklands. And that does it. Next week we start TBP, but before then, look for some films featuring George C Scott. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 12:17:36

15 Apr 17

This week we're taking a look at a selection of films featuring the legendary Marlon Brando. We have such famous works of his as A Streetcar Named Desire and On the Waterfront (both directed by Elia Kazan), some less well-known titles like Burn! (Brando's personal favorite performance) and The Formula with George C Scott. We then cap it all off with that lovable cinematic catastrophe The Island of Dr. Moreau, in which Brando puts a champagne bucket on his head for one scene and nobody dares to say anything to him. Next week we've got the conclusion of TTWC3 and following my pattern of movie connections, we'll do a feature on George C Scott. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 04:05:08

13 Apr 17

Is that just a neko sleeping adorably or is it the sign of something sinister? You knew Batista and Masako wouldn't get to stay out of trouble for long. It's about to get real in Chapter 9 of CeleKing1. We've still got Brando the Mando coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:29:03

11 Apr 17

I was just about to comment on the content of today's chapter with no heed of spoilers when I realized that someone might read this post before reading the book, so as a way of less spoilery commentary, you may recall Garm being involved in a purge after a certain incident of fratricide within the Alliance. Well, if you wonder if the purge went beyond that, you're about to find out. There's one thing the Red Warlord doesn't mind and that's some blood on his hands. Here's Akasame's Chapter 5 of TTWC3. Next week we bring the story to a close and can start to look forward to kicking off The Brothers Pendragon, an event 20 years in the making. Closer at hand, we've got more CeleKing1 and some of the films of Marlon Brando. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:23:02

08 Apr 17

This week we take a look at some films of Yul Brynner. We have the WWII suspense Morituri with Marlon Brando, the spy thriller The Doubleman, and the Western Catlow with Richard Crenna and a naked Leonard Nimoy (no, I'm not joking). We've also got more of the Attack on Titan manga with Volume 21 and hot-off-the-presses Volume 22. We've got more TTWC3 and CeleKing1 next week and I think I'll use Morituri as a link to bring you some of the films of Marlon Brando. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 07:28:29

04 Apr 17

The Red Warlord gets a lesson in hubris, as all prior lessons have failed to take. (What are your bets on this one triggering a change of heart?) It's Akasame's Chapter 4 of TTWC3. Only two more weeks of actual cannibal Akasame. We've still got some Yul Brynner films and hopefully Attack on Titan if I can find a bookstore in this town. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 10:17:40

02 Apr 17

This week's theme is Westerns so nice they made them twice (or more). Connecting to last week, we have the original version of The Magnificent Seven, which is itself of course a remake of The Seven Samurai. From director Howard Hawks, we have Rio Brave and El Dorado. We also have the comedy duo of Support Your Local Sheriff!, and Support Your Local Gunfighter (the latter of which, besides having a lot in common with its predecessor, is a spoof of A Fistful of Dollars, which is a remake of Yojimbo). Next week we have more TTWC3 and I'm thinking about doing a mini-feature on Magnificent Seven star Yul Brynner. If I can get my hands on Volume 22 of Attack on Titan when it drops Friday, I'll cover it and Volume 21 (which I got last week). Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 08:51:16

30 Mar 17

As you can see, the mascot is busy running the shop Stateside while I'm reinstating the East Asia branch. We get a bit of a breather while our dynamic duo lays low in Chapter 8 of CeleKing1. We've still got some Western reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 02:17:35

28 Mar 17

Oh, hey, the sleepy little hamlet of Kordai gets to enjoy the preferential, bordering on gentle, even lover-like treatment that only the Bringer of the Red Rain can provide. (And in case you're wondering if I'm being sarcastic for the sake of a Deadpool reference, the answer is of course yes, but, honestly, when I think about it, this is about as lover-like as this guy gets.) It's time for Akasame's Chapter 3 of TTWC3. Just three more weeks and we'll be done with this one. Before that, though, we've still got more CeleKing1 and some Western reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 09:18:36

27 Mar 17

I guess if had to name this week's theme, I'd call it "Missed Movies of 2016", which sounds better than "The Movies of 2016 I Considered Watching But Never Did" or "The Movies I Decided to Watch on the Flight Over to Japan Instead of Sleeping". We've got two remakes, Ben-Hur and The Magnificent Seven, and three comic book movies: Doctor Strange, X-Men: Apocalypse, and Superman. Okay, that last one wasn't from 2016. I just wished that'd been what I saw in theaters instead of Batman v. Superman. Coming up, we've got more TTWC3 and CeleKing1 and inspired by the Magnificent Seven remake, I'm thinking about having some Western reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 11:53:55

21 Mar 17

And so I've returned to sunny Nippon. (It was actually dusky and drizzly when I started wandering the streets of Tokyo.) You wouldn't think that I'd make a point to update the site while sitting in my little cube of a capsule hotel (which, to be fair, is much roomier than the typical capsule hotel), but that's the sort of dedication I bring to the table. We've got yet another angle on the First Battle of Maximilion in Akasame's Chapter 2 of TTWC3. I still haven't committed on a theme for this week's reviews. I may just opt for the movies I watched on the plane on the way over here. And I'll probably make that update from my new digs further up north. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 14:42:30

18 Mar 17

Well, it's a little late for St. Patrick's Day, but Warwick Davis brings the luck of the Irish to a series of mostly middling but at times entertaining horror films. We have the whole set, starting with the original Leprechaun (the best of the bunch) and go on to its decreasingly satisfying sequels: Leprechaun 2, Leprechaun 3, Leprechaun 4: In Space (yes, really), Leprechaun in the Hood (I'm not kidding), and Leprechaun: Back 2 tha Hood (really not kidding). No, we're not considering Leprechaun: Origins. No Warwick, no watch. (Much like my objections to Hellraiser: Revelations.) Next week we've got more TTWC3 and yet to be determined reviews. I may not have mentioned it before, but I'm venturing to the Orient again and there may be some temporary disturbance with the schedule until I get settled in. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 04:05:08

16 Mar 17

So these bad hombres come to town lookin' for the one they call the Jellybean. She done left these here parts, but they stick around to sniff out the trail. Yes, well, we have something like that in Chapter 7 of CeleKing1. Even more people are on Batista and Masako's tails and this isn't the end of it either. Before we can find out what's going on with them, we get to celebrate St. Paddy's with our good friend Warwick Davis, so look forward to that. I'm going to try to be sure it's actually out the day itself rather than posting Saturday or Sunday. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 05:19:23

14 Mar 17

The Red Warlord finds a new place to raise Cain in Akasame's Chapter 1 of TTWC3. The situation in Notos is sure to get better after this. We've got more CeleKing1 and Leprechaun reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 21:15:06

11 Mar 17

We conclude our current feature on the works of Studio Ghibli with a trio of films by other directors than Miyazaki and son or Takahata. We have Whisper of the Heart, its spinoff The Cat Returns, and The Secret World of Arrietty. I'll eventually add Only Yesterday and When Marnie Was There to my collection and feature them when I do. I may even try to hunt down R2 DVDs of some of the lesser known Ghibli works, but that's a job for another day. We also have the recent release Logan, which is quite probably the best film of the X-Men franchise. Also, continuing with the Inuyasha manga, we have Volume 3 and Volume 4. Look for more TTWC3 and CeleKing1 next week and in honor of St. Patrick's Day, I'm thinking about paying homage to my Irish heritage by posting reviews of the Leprechaun franchise. Doesn't that sound nice? Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 21:17:20

07 Mar 17

Well, we've finally came to the last of our lead characters in this third entry of The Trident War Chronicles. The basic theme was that the three volumes would represent white, black, and grey morality, though most of the Zephyrians were not so pure nor were all the Darklanders entirely unredeemable. Among the Promethean Alliance, most of the lead characters have gravitated more toward the moral center, but our new lead would probably be more at home in the Dominion. See for yourself in Akasame's prologue of TTWC3. Spoiler alert: He's not going to get any sudden attack of conscience that moves him to reform. And after six weeks with him, we'll be done with the story. In the nearer future, we've got our last batch of Ghibli films for the time being. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 17:59:43

06 Mar 17

If Hayao Miyazaki is one pillar of Studio Ghibli, then Isao Takahata is another. While I favor Miyazaki, Takahata's works are rightfully acclaimed. A while back I posted a review of his last film, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, and now we add three more. First is the bitterly tragic Grave of the Fireflies, followed by Pom Poko and My Neighbors the Yamadas. This doesn't represent an exhaustive filmography of Takahata by any stretch, but these three round out all the films of his currently in my collection. We also are going to kick of reviews of the Inuyasha manga with Volume 1 and Volume 2. I've reread the entire series recently, but I'm well behind on writing reviews. Next week, we'll be starting Akasame's section of TTWC3 as we head toward the end of the book and we'll be looking at three more Ghibli films from other directors for reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 05:07:46

02 Mar 17

You never know the sort of surprising encounters you might find on the job. If you thought all Batista has to worry about is hardscrabble types looking to make a quick buck, then you're wrong. Get a look at who else is picking up the trail in Chapter 6 of CeleKing1. Look for those Takahata reviews in a couple more days. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 19:33:07

28 Feb 17

We've had some good times with the Faerie Queen (well, maybe not so good for her), but now it's time to say goodbye in Mab's epilogue of TTWC3. Look for her character spotlight post coming soon to the blog. We've got more CeleKing1 coming up plus Takahata reviews later on. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 19:43:55

27 Feb 17

What better way to bring Black History Month to a close than with the black private dick who's a sex machine with all the chicks? That's right, we're talkin' 'bout Shaft. Can ya dig it? The brother man goes to the motherland in Shaft in Africa and a new generation takes the mantle in 2000's Shaft. I wasn't able to get my hands on Shaft's Big Score in time for the deadline (and I just learned about the TV series while I was composing the reviews), so the set isn't complete. To fill things out, we have a film wrongly maligned by Harry Medved, 1972's Trouble Man and Quentin Tarantino's nod to blaxploitation, Jackie Brown. Next year, look for some black-centric Westerns among other treats. Looking to the more immediate future, we wrap up Mab's section of TTWC3, have more CeleKing1, and resume our Ghibli reviews with some of the films of Isao Takahata. (No... Grave of the Fireflies...) Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 01:33:31

21 Feb 17

This week's entry may be a bit controversial given what happens, but what can ya do? In case anyone wants to make a fuss about it, I'll be discussing the subject matter further in Mab's character spotlight on the blog next week. Then again, who knows? I may be making a mountain of a molehill. (Though these days, there's a lot of molehill-to-mountain upgrades going on.) Well, see for yourself and make your own judgment. Here's Mab's Chapter 5 of TTWC3. Later in the week, we've got reviews of a complicated man who no one understands but his woman. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 20:23:02

19 Feb 17

We continue our Black History Month coverage by featuring a selection of films starring Denzel Washington. We start with the somewhat obscure (and, honestly, the primary reason I decided to feature Mr. Washington) Ricochet and more recent outings like the remake of The Manchurian Candidate, Inside Man, American Gangster, and Flight. We also have the original version of The Manchurian Candidate. You might think it doesn't entirely fit with the theme of the month, but besides the fact I like to pair the original with its remake, this movie is apparently the first case where a black man was cast in a role not specifically designated as a black character (in this case, Joe Adams as the psychiatrist). That's something. Looking on to next week, we've got more TTWC3 and we'll wind down our Black History Month movie reviews with the man who'll help his brother man. Can ya dig it? Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 03:46:33

17 Feb 17

We've got to catch a train in Chapter 5 of CeleKing1. No problem, right? Batista and Masako seem like the kind of characters that always catch a break. We've still got reviews on the horizon. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 07:12:02

14 Feb 17

Well, what better way to spend Valentine's Day than with the object of your affection? It doesn't quite work out that way in Mab's Chapter 4 of TTWC3. You might argue there's something there between Rowland and Mab, but it's complicated and it'll get even more complicated before we're done. We get to check back in with Batista and Masako in CeleKing1 later and the week and my man Denzel will be the subject of our next batch of reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 20:13:38

13 Feb 17

Once again, we have Sidney Poitier ring in Black History Month with To Sir, With Love and To Sir, With Love II. We also have him in supporting roles in Sneakers and The Jackal and close on one of his directorial outings, Ghost Dad. And while it doesn't entirely fit the theme, we've got a new release, The Lego Batman Movie. (Well, Batman dresses in black, Barbara is ambiguously brown, and we do have a black Two Face [as played by the only black man in space, no less], so it's not entirely out of step.) Coming up next week, we have more TTWC3 and CeleKing1, plus I'm thinking we'll feature Denzel Washington. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 05:30:07

07 Feb 17

You may recall brief mention being given to the Olympian Bands, a militia formed of Notian loyalists to Zephyr tasked with retaking territory held by the Alliance. You may also recall that their mission was an utter failure, though in truth they were intended to serve as little more than a distraction for the rebels while Duke Cronos awaited the arrival of the Zephyrian fleet. Would you like a glimpse at the sort of fate that befell Zeus' Band, the group charged with Maximilion? Let's just say that you don't want to fall into the hands of a being of great power with a bitter grudge against humanity and a lot of time on her hands to think of new and creative ways to make you suffer. See for yourself in Mab's Chapter 3 of TTWC3. Look for Sidney Poitier later in the week. (Reviews of his movies, not an actual guest appearance.) Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 19:36:32

When I announced that I created a Gab.ai account, I mentioned that I might end up eliminating the site's Facebook and Twitter accounts due to the two companies' unsavory practices. I have decided to go forward with this decision. I realize that Gab doesn't have the same reach as Facebook or Twitter, but I can't in good conscience continue to associate with them, regardless of what that might mean for the site's traffic. I apologize for any inconvenience this might cause, but lines are being drawn in the sand and I know where I want to stand. I don't expect everyone to agree with me and that's your prerogative. I try to keep my politics off the site as much as possible, but this isn't the first time I've had to sever working relationships and it invariably won't be the last. In other news, look for the next chapter of TTWC3 coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 04:20:24

05 Feb 17

We began our journey with an irregular entry in the Lupin III and now we draw our look at the film career of Hayao Miyaaki to a close (unless he decides to backtrack on his retirement again) with his final two films: Ponyo and The Wind Rises. While we're at it, we're going to also look at the two directorial outings of his son Goro, Tales from Earthsea and From Up on Poppy Hill. I suppose I'll do my Black History Month thing for the rest of February, then pick up with the Ghibli films of Isao Takahata the first week of March. Oh, yes, there's one more review. We've got the 3DS port of a game I've already covered in its WiiU incarnation, Hyrule Warriors Legends. Next week we've got more TTWC3 and we'll class things up with Sidney Poitier. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 05:25:29

02 Feb 17

It's about time we met the big bad, don't you think? Let's take a trip to the center of the web and see the spider for ourselves in Chapter 4 of CeleKing1. In other news, our last round of Miyazaki reviews is on the way. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 20:25:50

31 Jan 17

The Faerie Queen gets to stretch her wings a bit, so to speak, in Mab's Chapter 2 of TTWC3. We've got more CeleKing1 on the way, plus that well-beloved sitcom, Miyazaki and Son. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 21:04:02

30 Jan 17

Our fun with Hayao Miyazaki continues with the film that inspired this series, Princess Mononoke. Some of you may be aware that it was originally supposed to be Miyazaki's last film, but he ended up changing his mind and kept at it for 16 more years. Thanks to that, we have Ghibli's one Oscar win with 2001's Spirited Away and followe it with Howl's Moving Castle. We'll tackle his last two films next week along with the two directorial outings of his son Goro. But we're not done with this week's reviews. I also have a couple Zelda offerings, the manga adaptation of The Minish Cap and Volume 1 of Twilight Princess. Coming up, we've got more TTWC3 and CeleKing1, the film reviews I mentioned plus a game review. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 06:43:58

27 Jan 17

It's anniversary time once again here at Palidor Media. Well, it's hard to believe, but it's been ten years since an expat teacher in Japan decided to make a website. A lot has happened in those ten years and if you want a retrospective, check out the blog post I've written to commemorate the occasion. Our goal here, however, is to look forward at what I've got planned for 2017. TTWC3 will continue until the middle of April, where I'll be following it with The Brothers Pendragon. CeleKing1 will go on until November, after while point we'll start up CeleKing2. I'd like to get The Seeds of Avalon started at some point this year, but at the rate I'm going, that may well be a Q3 deal at best. While it isn't quite set in stone yet, it is looking like I'll be making yet another trip to the Orient (bringing things full circle in a way) and I can't quite say how that will affect things on the site. There may well be some new stories rolled into preproduction with teasers to accompany them, not that I don't have more than enough on my plate as it is. Who knows what else might make an appearance down the line? Consider it something to look forward to. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 21:17:30

24 Jan 17

Mab thinks she's got a winning strategy to outwit her husband, but when you try to cheat at a high-stakes game, the consequences can be pretty steep. See how things turn out in Mab's Chapter 1 of TTWC3. And this is only the start of her fun. Yay. Don't forget that there's no CeleKing1 this week, but I will have the anniversary post Friday and later on there'll be more Miyazaki reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 20:23:50

23 Jan 17

We continue our coverage of the films of Hayao Miyazaki with the one that gave Studio Ghibli its mascot, My Neighbor Totoro, followed by Kiki's Delivery Service (which coincidentally features a number of seiyuu from Ranma 1/2 [with Noriko Hidaka/Akane playing Satsuki in Totoro]) and Porco Rosso. Next up, we bring our current coverage of the Attack on Titan manga to a close with Volume 19 and Volume 20. Looking on into the week, there's more TTWC3 and Miyazakim plus I'm thinking of doing some more Zelda manga. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 04:51:35

20 Jan 17

Coronel Obrado of the Regimiento de Rionegro wishes he could rest this easy, but he's had a bad time of it and things aren't looking so hot in the immediate future either. He's got a plan, though, as you'll see in Chapter 3 of CeleKing1. Look for more Ghibli reviews coming up. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 08:38:58

17 Jan 17

We go from a Goblin princess to the Faerie Queen with Mab's prologue of TTWC3. As you might imagine, Mab's going to have a bit of a hard time of it. While she's dealing with that, look for the next chapter of CeleKing1 coming up plus more Miyazaki reviews. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 22:02:34

16 Jan 17

I'm a pretty big fan of Hayao Miyazaki, so I'm more than happy to revisit his films for review purposes. We start with his first feature film, The Castle of Cagliostro, the proto-Ghibli film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind and the first true Ghibli film Castle in the Sky. The only downside is that once I'm done with Miyazaki's films is that I'll start visiting Isao Takahata's works, which means another trip to Graveyard of the Fireflies. (Not looking forward to that one. Not because it isn't a good movie, but because it's depressing as all get out. Spoiler alert, by the way.) Moving along, we pick up Attack on Titan with Volume 17 and Volume 18. Coming up, we kick off Mab's section of TTWC3, bring out the next chapter of CeleKing1, and continue our coverage of both Miyazaki and AoT. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 07:42:01

10 Jan 17

Well, as I'm sure you've come to expect in this series, nothing but good things are in store for our current lead as we send her off in Urgill's epilogue of TTWC3. Look for her Character Spotlight post in the blog shortly hereafter. Be on the lookout for reviews of some of Miyazaki's early film later in the week. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 23:10:40

09 Jan 17

Following last week's reviews, I decided it would be a good idea to give a review of E.T. the Extra-Terrestial (the movie, not the game) and what better way to make a theme of it than to add in Close Encounters of the Third Kind? (But not that other movie Spielberg made about aliens in 2008... >_> ) Well, then I realized that I'd already posted my review of Close Encounters of the Third Kind and the same was true of It Came From Outer Space, the other film I originally had optioned for this week. Dagnabbit. Well, there are still aliens to be had in Battleship and for 50s kitsch The Beast with a Million Eyes. Last but not least, we have the grand finale of Ranma 1/2 manga with Volume 37 and Volume 38. I'll be picking the Attack on Titan manga back up to cover the four new volumes I recently got and after watching the 20th anniversary screening of Princess Mononoke, I think I'm going to cover some Miyazaki films over the next few weeks. We'll also be finishing Urgill's section of TTWC3 next week. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 06:31:05

05 Jan 17

Look at that friendly face. The events of this chapter may have turned out differently if Batista was greeted by this face. (The story might be a lot less grimdark if there were more fuzzy nekos.) Anyway, here's Chapter 2 of CeleKing1. In the coming days, get your motion tracker ready for alien encounters (oh, wait, I already covered those alien movies) and the end of our coverage of Ranma 1/2. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 19:06:57

03 Jan 17

When the Alliance broke Medusa's hold on Iakobin, they didn't get every single Darklander in the invasion force, so what happened to them? Where might they end up? Find out in Urgill's Chapter 5 of TTWC3. We'll be saying goodbye to her next week, but in the meantime, we've got more CeleKing1 coming up plus some reviews of the third kind. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 20:40:25

02 Jan 17

This is coming out later than usual. If you're in the mood for a laugh, we can blame the delay on my ever so active social life. Ha ha ha. I was at a bit of a loss for a theme for the reviews when I decided to go with a trio of documentaries about flops, frauds and failures. We have the search for the elusive ET graveyard in Atari: Game Over, a tale of all manner of fakery in Orson Welles' F for Fake and The Death of "Superman Lives": What Happened? We also draw ever closer to the conclusion of our coverage of the Ranma 1/2 mange with Volume 35 and Volume 36. Look for more TTWC3 and CeleKing1 plus reviews of some extraterrestrial encounters. Stay tuned.

Posted by: James
UTC 19:55:25