Raven Kwok

Homebrew Icosphere:

Many other fine videos here.

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Fungus At The Wheel

Today in Ophiocordyceps unilateralis news:

David Hughes wants to know exactly how this puppet master controls its puppets -- and his latest experiments suggest that it's even more ghoulish than it first appears. [...]

Hughes's team found that fungal cells infiltrate the ant's entire body, including its head, but they leave its brain untouched. [...] Hughes thinks the fungus might also exert more direct control over the ant's muscles, literally controlling them "as a puppeteer controls as a marionette doll." Once an infection is underway, he says, the neurons in the ant's body -- the ones that give its brain control over its muscles -- start to die. Hughes suspects that the fungus takes over.

It effectively cuts the ant's limbs off from its brain and inserts itself in place, releasing chemicals that force the muscles there to contract. If this is right, then the ant ends its life as a prisoner in its own body. Its brain is still in the driver's seat, but the fungus has the wheel.

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Star Trek Continues has completed it's five year mission

So now you can binge the whole thing. Here's a playlist.

This series was really fantastic. My favorite Star Trek shows are now: TOS, Discovery, Continues and Stargate: Universe.

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Mecha-dragons, 1924 edition.

Fritz Lang's Die Nibelungen: Siegfried:

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Necro Nom-Nom-Nomicon

Facehugger Feast Roasted Chicken:

Made from a full-sized roasting chicken, snow crab legs, and a homemade chicken sausage tail, this sweet slab of petrifying poultry is smokey, succulent, and has just enough bite from a secret ingredient to make you cautiously come back for more.

Turkeyburster:

Pork loin wrapped in prosciutto and then secured with caul fat. Mouth is stuffed with tin foil to maintain shape while baking. Spaghetti teeth. Chest burster gets roasted in the oven using tin foil and empty cans to help maintain shape.

Key Slime Pie with gelatin tentacles:

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Tube Swaging

Machine Pix:

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Amazons get the Harley Quinn makeover!

The Amazons' New Clothes:

This abrupt change of direction is a shock and these outfits look like generic barbarian women from a game of Dungeons and Dragons. They completely lack the unique flavor of the Greco-Roman-inspired armor ensembles that Lindy Hemming put so much thought and historical research into creating for Wonder Woman. The Wonder Woman designs received acclaim from fans and costume fanatics alike. They were clearly inspired by the Amazon's origins in the Mediterranean and were feminine but very functional. Why mess with perfection?

Oh, right. The all-male team of directors and executive directors wanted women to fight in bikinis.

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Valerian

When I saw Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets I said nice things about it, and I would like to unconditionally retract those statements. My review was basically, "The first half was OK", but I was wrong. On an attempted second viewing, I found it to be complete garbage.

Here, have some TV Yelling:

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Violet
I am hating Valerian so much right now.
Don't you just want to punch the tech bro protagonist in the face so hard?
So hard.
I always knew Burning Man would become a mall.
Did you notice the white African aliens lived in vaginas?
Yup. Also they don't have nIpples.
Boy women sure suck! Ha ha ha this movie is hilarious.
It's like the same five mysoginistic jokes on repeat.
"You ruined my dress!"
Ha ha "women drivers" again.
Yeah they think they can drive good, LOL
Oh I remember noticing the first time -- there are 10 people here wearing military uniforms, and no two of them are the same cut!
Yeah those uniforms are pure arts and crafts
"This is a direct order from the government!" said no one ever
Oh and here's the part where the girl's space suit has GIANT boobs!
It's not like this movie opened with a gratuitious bikini scene establishing her boob situation or anything.
God this is bad.
Why are there circuits stitched onto his hat?
Oh here come the Space Jews!
They're greedy and little, it's a joke, so funny!
This looks like a really irritating video game.
Why doesn't his space suit have giant boobs?
Because he is a giant boob.
What was the movie with the roller-skating werewolf in space?
Wow. No clue.
Jupiter Ascending
The Space Jews are back! And women are unpredictable! Ha ha ha!
She just said "I'm a good driver"
So funny when women say that!
Ok they dubbed this badly. She said "stick my head up his ass" not "on his mouth".
Why did they kill Rihanna? This movie sucks.
Ha! I'm pretty sure Rihanna died because she was sick of their shit. Imagine being her and having to ask a male lead over and over "do you like my performance? do you really like my performance? Was my performance okay?" Surprised she didn't burn the sets to the ground.
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Jim
Dude I tried to rewatch Valerian last night and OMG it is so bad. How did I think it was even remotely tolerable?
Yeah, I almost feel like once you've seen the ending, the whole thing becomes retroactively worse.
There were visuals I liked, but the wheels came off really early, and then it was just... dumb.
It's like Jupiter Ascending bad.
Oh man. I'm going to push back only because I feel like that diminishes my personal gauge of badness.
What even is the basement when you calibrate against Jupiter Ascending??
I mean, the first time around I thought it compared favorably to The Fifth Element - another movie I only liked half of. The wheels come off that one as soon as fucking Ruby Rhod shows up. The whole Fhloston Paradise third act is worthless. But no.
Good comparison, with similar breakdowns after strong early visuals, but yeah, Valerian is much worse.
Oh, as for the basement -- I just watched Singularity, the new John Cusack movie. It was worse than Maze Runner 2.
OMG
Mal described it as "a prequel to Cleopatra 2525 where Cusack plays Kreegan" but THAT sounds like something I'd enjoy!
Oh, yeah, come on, man! Don't tease with the Cleopatra 2525!
And FTR I actually watched both Maze Runner movies (drunk) and if you added up every second I remember from their combined run times, I think it would come out to about 12 seconds.
Maze Runner has the stupidest Young Adult Fantasy trope of all time - everyone has amnesia, but we are supposed to root for "underdog" to win "girl" over "bully"? They have amnesia! They literally have no characterization! How am I supposed to pick the "good guy"?
And how is this a trope, anyway? Because it is. It actually makes the writing harder and the characters even less relatable. Why do they do this??
Because young people are stupid.
That answer is insufficient. I mean, I at least understand why at a certain age I was drawn to a hateful book like Ender's Game. The amnesia thing just doesn't make any sense. Is it a kink?
I get the feeling that all that young adult fiction is designed to allow the tween audience to just pick from blank slate characters to decide who they want to "be." Like Harry Potter and the different "houses" at the wizard school. It's all "what kind of witch are you?"
Oh man MySpace Quizzes metastasized.
Hoo boy yes.
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The mini Rihanna video would have been ok if they hadn't spoiled it with the reaction shots back to Leering Dude-Bro and the inexplicable Groovie Mann pianist:

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Dental Phantoms

Look, all I'm saying is, it was my birthday recently...

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Whoever Falls

Yoann Bourgeois:

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