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Today was really long but I wanted to get the episode uploaded asap. I'm sure I'll have tons to say about Pokemon really soon.

Direct download: 10.15.2013_Episode_83.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 8:59pm EST
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I don't get excited about many things. That's a blatant lie. Want to hear another lie? I'm glad I'm sitting at home and not attending The New York Comic Con. That was a good one, right? *Insert some bogus There's Always Next Year type deal*

While I'm missing out on NYCC this year, I'm still excited to read all the stories and announcements coming out over the next few days. One might find it a bit ironic that I'm going to be refreshing Bleeding Cool constantly until Sunday night but in the 3 years I've attended NYCC I've yet to make it into a panel....I guess I get too caught up in spending every cent I've earned on custom made pictures of things. I have no regrets.

The new Pokemon games come out in like, 2 days. It would be putting it lightly to say I'M REALLY FUCKING EXCITED. After several laborious hours of trying to decide which version of the game I'll be purchasing, X or Y, I think I've finally made my decision. Of all the decisions I've ever made I think it is safe to say this was the single hardest one. (Only a slight exaggeration there, btw.) The boys over at Nintendo are geniuses. They tease us with every add-on they create. Oh, what's that? You're pretty set on getting Y? OH WELL HERE'S A BADASS VERSION OF CHARIZARD THAT YOU CAN ONLY GET IN X. Oh, hey now. You're gonna get X? WELL HERE'S A NASTY LEGENDARY POKEMON THAT YOU CAN ONLY GET IN Y. It's like they enjoy torture. It's like I enjoy this torture. Either way, I might be calling in a substitute for next week's episode as I'll be completely immersed in a land of mythical dueling creatures with special abilities one might question if they were to exist in the real world.

-Jr.

Direct download: 10.9.2013_Episode_82.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 10:59am EST
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Despite our show's moniker we rarely get into any form of heated debate on many topics. For the most part we tend to agree on things but every now and then when the topic is juicy enough...an actual debate begins to form. We then take this infant debate and nurture it. We cuddle it and try and raise it into a full blown debate complete with multiple facts and varying arguements. It makes me happy when we have these sorts of conversations because A) It makes for great Podcast material and B) It shows how passionate people can get over certain subjects. These subjects may seem silly to some people, but we'd like to think that they're off being miserable somewhere else and not wasting their time with our little show.

I finished Grand Theft Auto V yesterday. I had no idea I was even close to the end then all of a sudden the camera starts panning up and "end of game" triumphant music starts playing while some credits start rolling. I have to admit I was kind of "meh" on the situation. One might say I found the end of the game to be a tad unsatisfying.....Now, don't get me wrong; I absolutely loved the game but the ending seemed to come out of nowhere. It's as if the developers forgot they had to end the story and just threw one in where they saw fit. Despite finishing the main storyline, I'm still only about 65% done with the entire game as I have mountains of side missions to complete. Not to mention the online mode was released yesterday. As far as GTA:V goes, I'd say I have at least another solid month of playing before it even begins to get boring. This makes me happy. Very happy.

-Jr.

Direct download: 10.1.2013_Episode_81.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 10:24am EST
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I have to run to work. Post to follow shortly.

Direct download: 9.26.2013_Episode_80.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 11:22am EST
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We're almost 80 episodes deep into this thing. Can you believe that?

I feel kind of bad for my 3DS. Ever since I finished Fire Emblem it has just been sitting there on my desk giving me the pouty face. I'm not one who can replay games on a whim. Honestly I could probably count the number of games I've played through more than once on one hand. I thought Fire Emblem would be different because there are so many different routes you can take with your characters but I ran into the same roadblock that I always hit when I try to replay something: I get bored. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, however. With the new Smash Bros. and Pokemon games coming out in the near future, really my 3DS should be thanking me for the extended layoff since I'm going to be abusing it so much in the coming months. So, YOU'RE WELCOME, 3DS. 

Also, this fall weather is THE SHIT AMAZING. If you haven't experienced autumn in New England you need to get on that. Until then I don't think we can be friends. Nothing personal. You understand, right? Aw, c'mon baby, don't be upset.

Damnit. I gotta go handle this. Enjoy episode 79, ya'll.

-Jayare.

Direct download: 9.18.2013_Episode_79.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 10:17am EST
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I don't really have a whole lot to say that isn't already in this week's episode. Lucky for me Alex wrote this piece on volunteering at conventions and events. Enjoy!

Speaking with Charlie from Sketchprices.com on episode 71 (and the pre-show) reminded me of my own experiences volunteering for a convention. This is an aspect I had completely forgotten about for the simple yet terribly misguided thought that it’s something I don’t plan on doing anymore. (I’ll get to why later on.) Also my work with Zombie Charge encouraged me to finish this as of episode 78.

Charlie was able to choose a shift for each day he volunteered and would choose a morning shift which would allow him the rest of the day to experience the huge event. This seems like a better deal than when I volunteered for Wizard World Philadelphia 20XX, it was at least ten years ago, where I got about an hour mid-day and then some time near closing when I wasn’t needed anymore. In later years I’d go back to Philly to volunteer for Wizkids, the company that makes and runs the Heroclix miniature figures game I used to play. Wizkids would host games and tournaments and needed envoy/judges to run them, stay organized, pass out prizes, and do demonstrations on the show floor. For the most part I had fun, I met some people, I liked working the gaming area, I’d get some figures of my own for working and I got into the event for free. Yes, volunteering is a free pass into the show.

There are perks and minuses to volunteering. If you don’t have the money but really  want to go, this will get you in for free. However it will act as your job for the day. You’ll need to be on time, stay when they need you and man your post. As a guest or ticketholder you can wander all you want, arrive when you want, leave when you want, do laps around the floor make trips to your car go down the street for food with complete freedom.  But volunteering ties you down until you’re granted a lunch break or a few minutes to check out the con.  Sometimes if you’re lucky you’ll get something in addition to a pass, sometimes it’s a t-shirt, I got a hardcover “100 covers of Wizard” book for staying after the show was over to direct parking for vendors to pack up. Depending on your job you could meet the artists/stars/editors/talent while working. One girl I met would close out the “end of the line” spots for signings and guard the signing table, by the end of the weekend her shirt was covered with signatures and Jim Lee drew a huge Batman profile on the back of her shirt. I brought ice to “Stone Cold” Steve Austin… Alright that one isn’t interesting… when Wizard World had portfolio reviews I got to watch Axel Alonso make people cry. That was when Alonso was an editor of a stable of comics, I don’t remember which one but a stable is considered being the main editor of all the X-books or all the Spider-books, He’s now the Marvel editor-in-chief. While you are on the show floor or at the entrance or where ever you can still interact with people and take pictures. A group of volunteers in Boston in the past cosplay while volunteering, example: Rogue from the X-Men directed me to where Frank Quietly was signing. People watching becomes a sport, maybe make a bingo chart or scavenger hunt.

            With the good comes the bad though. I also spent 5 hours guarding stairs no one used. They led to a special lounge for staff and talent and we didn’t want any fanboys sneaking up there. Those were very boring hours and I didn’t know better to go buy something interested to read while I stood there. I did meet the Wizard Magazine owners mom…while standing at stairs.
As with any other customer service job you are responsible for everything that ever happens. If an artist is late, had to leave early or cancels it may be you that has to tell a con-goer or all the con-goers. Maybe the autographs for [TV Star X] are too expensive or the atm ran out of money or any number of things, you may get blamed for all of it. Lots of people will know it’s not your fault or there’s nothing you can do about it but there will be a few that think you have a shirt (the color of the other staff/volunteers) and the con name on it that you are in control of all situations. The best artillery you can have is information. Direct them to another artist, another atm, a different food vendor, or someone that may have the answer if you don’t. I was impressed with the willingness to help and find the answer when I asked some volunteers and helpers at Steampunk Worlds Fair who not only brought me to someone that could help but stayed there until my question was resolved or answered.  

            Also you’re helping the event. These events need people to direct traffic flow, hand out badges, answer questions or set up that fancy lounge I mentioned earlier. To speak to NYCC staff/volunteer professionalism last year, there was a situation where  unexpectedly the line got serious for Mark Bagley and was bogging down space for anyone else to get through. Pretty quickly staff placed a couple people to hold the line out of the way and still maintain everyone’s spot. (It was a matter of “We stand here, then you can go stand over there. Because here isn’t going to get us run over.”)

And more recently was when I helped for the CT Zombie Charge 5K: Mud and Blood 2013 event. I got to meet almost all the zombies that were trying to infect the runners. They also had volunteers to be present at any of the potentially dangerous obstacles, working the bag-check tables, getting people their registration numbers and flags, decontaminating the infected and working the parking area. The event was also held to benefit  The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, Connecticut Food Bank, and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  As I said whatever you can do will help the event and possibly help others. 

There is also the chance to get your foot in the door, if you make yourself known or are able to make regular contributions it may lead to a job in the future. At the very least you'll meet some people, make a few friends, learn a few things and have some stories to tell.

-Alex

Direct download: 9.10.2013_Episode_78.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 9:44am EST
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Last week I briefly touched on the 2DS and my initial gut reaction. I do have to say that a week later my feelings haven't changed much. Unfortunately, it seems I lacked the proper vocabulary and grammar skills while discussing it in the episode to really say anything besides "it's ugly". One could make the arguement that I didn't make any other valid points and you would probably be 100% right. But in response to that arguement I leave you with this: Dude. Have you seen it yet? That thing is fucking ugly. So. Luckily we had Joe on this week and he was able to help us discuss more features about the 2DS other than it's aesthetic value.

PAX is happening right now. Like, at this very second. Every time I punch another key, another millisecond of PAX ends. And I'm not there to experience it. Joe mentioned during pre-show that attending a West Coast PAX, or "PAX Prime", is a bullet point on his bucket list and I couldn't agree more. People might call us spoiled as we have our own East Coast PAX event every spring in Boston but that doesn't change my stance on wanting to attend the Prime show. There's just something about the original, the first, the OG, that makes every other PAX seem inferior. Maybe inferior isn't quite the right word. From what I've seen PAX East is an incredible convention and I can't wait until we finally get to experience it, but the call of the Prime show is undeniable. And some day we will taste it's delicious fruit. Someday...

Oh, and Bradley Cooper is Rocket Raccoon? Vin Diesel is Groot? James Spader is Ultron?? Three pretty huge Marvel announcements and we talked about them for all of 3 seconds this week. We're terrible nerds.

-Jr.

Direct download: 9.1.2013_Episode_77.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 11:36am EST
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You'd think I would have a lot to say about this week's events. Honestly, I've been very "meh" about the whole situation. My initial reaction, that fabled "gut" reaction that these men speak of, was that of "OMG I CAN'T WAIT TO SEE WHAT THE INTERNET SAYS". Then, after an hour or so of pure hilarity I got bored and forgot about it until we laid down the track for this sweet, sweet episode.

Also, while trying to think of things to write about I came across this article...and I kind of threw up in my mouth a little. Don't get me wrong, I tend to say that every time Nintendo comes out with a new handheld....then I buy one and end up loving it...but this thing has me confused. It reminds me of one of those home-made portable N64s or something. From what I've read it seems to be pretty comfortable in your hands but I'm not sure that will make up for all the lost dignity. Not to mention it seems a bit bulky which would give me panic attacks when packing for conventions and such. At the end of the day these are all those silly gut reactions I mentioned earlier and I'm sure I'll end up eating my words later when the 2DS ends up being the best selling handheld device of all time...but for now I'll stick to my guns and say that thing is one ugly mother fucker and I wouldn't be caught dead with one.

In other news I finally picked up the first Hellboy trade and OH MY GOD WHAT HAVE I BEEN DOING WITH MY LIFE?? I've had people say "hey man, you should totally read Hellboy" more times than I can count but I always shrugged them off and informed them that I've seen the movies so I don't really need to read it. I wish I could go back in time and punch myself in the face. On the list of "Jayare's biggest regrets" I'd say Not Reading Hellboy Sooner is on there right below Hey Maybe Rob Liefeld Isn't That Bad Of An Artist. Live and learn, I suppose.

-Jr.

Direct download: 8.27.2013_Episode_76.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 2:02pm EST
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Our friend Ryan is a huge fan of the show. We've had him on in the past and we are going to have him on again in the future. Since he's currently enlisted in the US Army and stationed in Washington; it kind of makes it difficult to have him on consistently. Luckily, he's on leave at the moment so, like the geniuses that we are, we jumped on the opportunity to have him join us.

There's been a ton of talk in the past week or so about The Killing Joke. I don't think I've ever met someone who has read the story and not said "Oh man, it's one of my favorite stories ever". Apparently, Grant Morrison recently stated that he believes Batman killed the Joker at the end of the book. Then the internet exploded. Well, not literally, but you know how we get when people drop bombs like that. Not only are people debating the killing, they're debating how the killing happened. I don't know about you, but I find conspiracy theories to be absolutely delicious. 

I've had two people in the past 3 days ask me if I've played The Wondeful 101 yet. Both of these inquires were completely unprovoked, and after hearing Joe's reaction to the demo I decided it was probably worth checking out. I've been looking for reasons to use my Wii U anyways, so why not? Right? Turns out the game is pretty sweet. Of course it's just a demo with little instruction on what to do but I must say the game is absolutely beautiful and very entertaining. Learning the controls almost killed it for me, though. I was thrown into battle with just a few pop-ups on the screen attempting to tell me what to do. I might as well have been an infant attempting to assemble a machine gun. I'm anxious to see what the full game is going to be like and what kind of story they could possibly incorporate into it even if it makes absolutely zero sense. Either way I'm just excited to dust off the Wii U and finally have something to play.

-Jr.

Direct download: 8.20.2013_Episode_75.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 10:55am EST
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So I never got around to writing a blog post for last week's episode...call it writer's block, call it laziness, call it a combination of the two. Either way, my apologies for not delivering what I promised. I'll make it up to you all soon with silly cat pictures or something.

A few weeks ago we talked about a new project that Alex and Jared (from episode 56) are working on. Turns out the writer/lead actress, Kt Baldassaro, is also cool as hell and came on the show so we could ask her all about it and stuff. They launched a Kickstarter that was funded in a whopping 6 days and they're already working on their first stretch goal. From what I understand this is a good thing. If you want to find out more about her flim you should have a listen to the interview and check out their Facebook page. You won't regret it. And if you do, maybe you should really think about these things before you go clicking links, eh? No, but seriously. Click them.

They had some huge announcement thingy for the new Call of Duty today. We were busy asking Kt questions when it was going down so we didn't have the chance to catch any of it. From what I gathered from MLG CEO Sundance DiGiovanni there was a lot of noise...and music...and guns....which is what I've come to expect from COD games so I guess I'm excited? I think? Either way I know one thing: I will be terrible at it.

In other news: Saga returns today and I can't wait to get it in my face. Like, I need it. In my face. If you're not reading Saga you should start putting it in your face so we can talk about how awesome putting Saga in our faces is.

Is Pacific Rim out on Blu-Ray, yet?

-Jr.

Direct download: 8.14.2013_Episode_74.mp3
Category:Comics Movies & Videogames -- posted at: 7:18pm EST
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