Universal Dork


Comic Book Cover of the Week: The Other Thor! by petersaturday

This awesome comic book cover from 1983 has gotta be one of my favorites ever! Thor #337 features my favorite character from the norse god’s mythos-Beta Ray Bill! This super weird character made his first appearance in this issue and as odd as this guy looked he was deemed worthy of Thor’s hammer! So Beta Ray to me is just as cool as Thor, even more so I’d dig it if rather than a woman Thor, we’d just get him to take place of the character completely for a while instead. Also Walt Simonson uses simplicity to make this one of the coolest covers ever for The Mighty Thor comic series. I also really love it when characters affect the comic book covers logo’s and such-I’ve gotta sit down and dig this one out of my collection and give it another read pronto!! They need to put this guy into the next Thor flick dammit!



Conspiracy Theory: The Owl & Wolverine are the SAME person?!! by petersaturday

I’ve always wondered if perhaps there is some secret connection to Wolverine and The Owl in Marvel comics? Is it just me or do these two legendary characters share some unexplained similarities! Have they ever met in the comics? From what I can tell they’ve never crossed paths. So what’s up here are they long lost brothers? The Same person?! Distant relatives or did perhaps Wolverine rip off Leland Owsley’s style? Let’s compare!

hmmm…..

Well let’s see Wolverine again…even though we all know what he looks like!

I’m sure i’m not the first to notice this ahem…striking similarity! but just for the record The Owl first appeared in Daredevil #3 in 1964! Well good ol’ boy Wolverine didn’t appear until 1974 in Incredible Hulk #181! So looks like Wolverine just might have copied Leland’s look for his own! Damn! But still I’m fairly certain The Owl decided he realllllly like Logan’s claws so he had to make a pair for himself. I’m not sure just when The Owl’s claws made their first appearance…STILL though I think it’s totally possible that Logan just might be Leland! Most people make aliases with the same letters in the first name right??! The conspiracy deepens!!



Universal Dork’s Picks for Cool New Movies! by petersaturday

Ok so we all saw Avengers: Age of Ultron, and while I was amused by it, it really to me felt like a bit of a repeat of the first movie. If there’s one thing I don’t need ANY more of is The Movie Avengers fighting giant hordes of shiny clone like CGI enemies in the third act demolishing a big city. Like not ever again. So enuff about that shit and the giant Hollywood Blockbusters, here’s a quick list of some movies I am personally looking forward too that should be hitting theaters soon!

Cooties:

I’m sick and tired of Zombie movies. We don’t need any more at all probably ever again for the rest of eternity. But for some reason this one is a little different than the usual fare. A virus that only effects people who’ve not gone through puberty?! Cooties looks like a great time and funny too!

Forbidden Empire:

This one looks like a total trip and jam packed with neat looking monsters! Basically the tale of a guy who’s dead set on mapping out Transylvania (never a good idea folks) and while doing so discovers a secret forest that holds a ton of creepy creatures! This looks like my kind of flick!

Backcountry:

I think this one is already out in select theaters, though it hasn’t hit my city yet. Anyway I’m a big fan of survival movies and giant crazed grizzly bears! So here we get both! This one looks like it’s got the perfect blend of survival and jaws like terror in the woods! Sign me up for a camping trip in Backcountry!!

The Final Girls:

I’ve been hearing some great things about this one which looks like a total riot. It’s basically the story of a group of teens who are transported into a supernatural slasher movie from the 1980’s! This film stars one of the teen girls mother as the scream queen, so it has a bit of a Back to the Future vibe. She has to team up with her mom in a fight for her life-I hear this one has a ton of laughs and a lot of heart-Still no trailer for this one but we have a neat-o clip! check it!

Harbinger Down:

I’ve been pumped about this all practical effects monster movie for the longest time! It looks like in 2015 we’ll finally get to see this one. It’s basically “The Thing” on a boat!! A kind of redemption for the lackluster Thing prequel we got in 2011-by the same team who worked on the effects that were scrapped for CGI. Can’t wait!

 

 



A Nightmare on Jean Claude Van Damme’s Street?! You Bet!! by petersaturday

This is pretty ridiculously awesome-Van Damme vs. Freddy Krueger?! Yep! In all of it’s cheezy fan made glory!



We Can Never Go Home – Truly Dangerous Teen Angst and Punk Spirit in the 80’s! by petersaturday

Oh how I love the 80’s! There’s something truly unique about that decade and even more so to me, having grown up in that era. That might be one of the reasons why I am loving ‘We Can Never Go Home‘ from Black Mask Studios so much, it really holds some serious nostalgia within it’s pages. In the late 80’s I was probably just about the same age as these characters in the book and was fueled by things like skateboarding, punk rock and well for me…girls. This series is set in 1989 and feature two characters who somehow seem like long lost characters from my childhood, only these two teens have something other than just raging hormones pulsating through their veins, they’ve also got some strange superhuman abilities. So what’s so unique about a story with some teenage misfits with dangerous mutant like powers you might ask?

Well writer Matthew Rosenberg pulls no punches and at issue #2 we see our two leads getting into a boat load of serious, serious trouble. Imagine if you were a teenager with raging hormones and you had a peculiar case of superhuman strength or could kill someone with your mind? It’d be a dangerous scenario and after our two troubled teens Madison & Duncan become friends it becomes quite an unholy alliance. With Madison sending her boyfriend crashing through a car window after he picks a fight with a loner punk rocker Duncan, things begin to get  real messy real quick. Soon these two find out they have more in common than they ever imagined.

After one fatal move the two are bound to never go home and head off on a road trip that by issue number two will have you gasping for air. These two teens just seem to get deeper and deeper into a tangled web that could easily cost them and anyone they care about their lives. So what better solution than stealing a car and robbing the local drug dealer of all his cash huh?

I’m also loving all of excellent references to old punk rock, mix tapes with everything awesome & confusing about being a teen in the 1980’s. It’s clear Rosenberg himself is a fan of the era and he captures the heart of a great rebellious 80’s flick within the pages of his book, which isn’t an easy task. I can already see this series transformed into great tv series or movie, kind like if ‘Heathers’ and ‘Firestarter’ got together and had lovechild.

So in a time when superhero books leave you feeling a bit empty inside it’s nice to know we’ve got a true alternative to the genre and one more exciting road trip left to go on with that awesome girl (or boy) that may have have got away many years ago. Just make sure to bring that totally rad old mix tape on this ride because is gonna get epic and most definitely deadly…  



Fortress – Awesome 80’s Oddball Australian Survival Adventure at it’s BEST!! by petersaturday

So you’re looking for an awesome 80’s survival flick huh? Well look no further because “Fortress” from 1985 delivers the goods big time!! This one seems to be somewhat of a forgotten gem, it was released on HBO back in the 80’s and later in 86′ in theaters in Australia where the movie was produced. I take great joy in watching awesome (or bad) movies from the 1980’s that some slipped under my radar for some reason and this one pretty much non stop awesomeness. It tells the simple story of a school teacher who’s class comes under attack by shotgun wielding masked psychos hell bent on taking everyone captive and hiding them in a cave in the Australian outback.

All goes as planned until the teacher (Rachel Ward) decides to take matters into her own hands. You got a ton of action, some truly awesome locales, creepy bad guys (one who with a Santa Claus mask) and a bit of an Amblin “kids in danger” style film making here that was surely missed by the masses.

Right around the third act the movie gets pretty intense when the teacher and her students become a major force to be reckoned with. Almost transforming into bloodthirsty “Lord of the Flies” type savages the finale of this film is awesome.

Then add in the shocking end scene the movie becomes even  more perplexing and unforgettable! Trust me if you’re a fan of weird 80’s  horror/thriller/kids movie hybrid flicks then this one will not disappoint!! You can get this one right on Netflix too!



Crazy Crazy Cat Man: “ROAR” Finally Gets It’s Debut in the USA! by petersaturday

Holy shit! I had the pleasure of seeing a screening last night of one of the most insane flicks I’ve ever seen at the Hollywood Theater right here in good ol’ Portland, Oregon! Yep “Roar” from 1981 has been called the most dangerous film ever made. This is hardly an exaggeration- It took about five years to make. It’s story revolves around Tippi Hedren and Noel Marshall, (writer, director, actor in the film)  along with Hedren’s real-life daughter Melanie Griffith and Marshall’s real-life sons John and Jerry.

Oh yeah and it also stars their real life adopted family of over 100 dangerous lions, tigers, panthers and cheetahs!! This movie is seriously insane, and had me cringing in fear around every corner as Noel Marshall is surrounded by these giant cats for nearly the entire movie. The plot is simple Marshall lives in Africa in a Swiss Family Robinson style house along with all of these man eating cats and a giant pissed off African elephant. The rest of his family (like in real life, Tippi in the movie, is his wife though they’re separated in the film) decide to drop by unexpectedly, only problem is dad isn’t there when they arrive….but the CATS are!

This movie is utter mayhem, filmed with just a loose plot, most all of the one million feet of footage shot depended on what the cats decided to do while shooting. These cats in the movie are considered Marshall’s harmless buddies, though he’s tackled, smothered and in the middle of raging giant cat fights pretty much nonstop throughout the film. To see these actors deliver their lines while in the midst of these beasts is quite a hilarious feat to say the least!

Now onto the other crazy fact of this film, no animals were harmed in the filming but over 70 cast and crew members were!! Much of the injury can be seen on film, though carefully edited. Here’s a list of exactly what when down via the Wiki page:

“Cinematographer Jan de Bont had his scalp lifted by a lion, resulting in 220 stitches. Tippi Hedren received a fractured leg and also had scalp wounds. This occurred after an elephant bucked her off its back while she was riding it. She was also bitten in the neck by a lion and required 38 stitches. This incident can also be seen in the film. Melanie Griffith(Hedren’s daughter) was also attacked, receiving 50 stitches to her face; it was feared she may lose an eye but in the end the wound was not disfiguring. 

Jan de Bont after the lion attack!

Noel was attacked so many times that he eventually was diagnosed with gangrene. One of those incidents, he was clawed by a cheetah when protecting the animals during a bushfire that occurred in 1979. All animals were evacuated, though it took several years for him to recover from his injuries. Due to the injuries, turnover was high as many did not want to return to the set. Some of the lions also suffered from illnesses that reduced their population. John Marshall was bitten by one of the lions and required 56 stitches. His brother Jerry was bitten in the foot while wearing tennis shoes. He later jokingly said the lion had a “tennis shoe fetish.” Assistant Director Doron Kauper had his throat bitten open, his jaw was bitten, and one of the lions attempted to rip an ear off. He was also injured in the head, chest, and thigh. Although it has been reported that the attack nearly proved fatal, the Santa Cruz Sentinel on July 9, 1978 printed a quote from a nurse saying his injuries were acute. He was also reported as being conscious and in a fair condition.

Sound pretty unbelievable huh? Well after watching this movie, which was never officially released in the US until now it’s pretty clear how the insane list of injuries is totally accurate with what you witness before you! There’s a ton of crazy stunts and an angry elephant scene that will scare the pants off of you! The cats were adopted by Hendren and Marshall from defunct circuses, zoos & irresponsible owners and given refuge at The Shambala Preserve  just about 50 miles outside of Los Angeles which they started together. in fact you can still visit the preserve today. Before you do though make sure you do not miss this movie it’s a truly incredible piece of cinema and one experience you’re likely to never forget!




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