Welcome...

Welcome...

Friday, December 30, 2005

I've had a Swahili song stuck in my head all morning. I guess that's what I get for learning enough of a language to be conversational on vacation.

Jambo.
Jambo bwana.
Habari gani?
Nzuri sana.
Wageni mwakaribishwa.
Kenya yetu, hakuna matata.
Kenya nchi nzuri, hakuna matata.
Nchi ya maajabu, hakuna matata.
Nchi yenye amani, hakuna matata.
Watu wote, hakuna matata.
Wakaribishwa, hakuna matata.

Which translates roughly as:
Hello.
Hello sir.
How are things?
Very nice.
Welcome visitor.
In our Kenya, no problem.
Kenya is a nice country, no problem.
A beautiful country, no problem.
A country with peace, no problem.
Everybody, no problem.
Welcome y'all, no problem.

Thanks for bearing with me. I think typing it out got me sorted.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

R.I.P. Fred.

I had a donut this morning in your honor.
Fred ' the donut guy' dies aged 83. An icon of my youth. Happy travels Fred. RIP.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Happy Holidays, OCHO!!!

The Comics Gnome inspires me to see life through the panels and by using this here InterPoop (the WWW, ya know), I can geek it up with Those Who Grok...

here's a Stool Sample freshly flung at a Window wall near you:

DC Dot Com's Message Board; Topic: INFINITE CRISIS. The time is now...I gotta run to work.

Remember kids...there are no bad thoughts...only bad actions. 'Namaste...


>supreme-d

Posts: 123
From: baltimore,maryland
Registered: 1/18/05

Re: Dissecting the Art of Infinite Crisis
Posted: Dec 26, 2005 11:13 PM

Ok assuming you all arent biased against books by
> marvel because your idiotic "dc is better, always"
> fanboys, you should see phils (Jimenez) art in new x-men
> #146-150. It ruled.



rev_sully

Posts: 127
From: Boston, MA
Registered: 7/9/04

Re: Dissecting the Art of Infinite Crisis
Posted: Dec 27, 2005 7:31 AM

Not biased at all. Grant Morrison's entire run on "New" X-Men was fabulous; #114-154. Phil's work on that was awesome. He got to destroy NY (where were thr Avengers,huh? Bendis hadn't took a hammer to them yet...but I digress...). Igor Kordy's work and his inking was my least favorite on that New X-Men run but I understand what Morrison was trying to do with that "look". On the other hand, Phil did some work on UNCANNY X-MEN a little later on which did not blow me away...why? The story...it was terrible (who wrote those? Claremont,Austin???). I bet the art is sharp but I was so done with anything in X-Tights after the relaunch. The stories weren't good and MARVEL completely Poo-Poo'ed on what Morrison just achieved. The House of Ideas just in my opinion ran dry (which is proved on how I spend in a comics shop by which title...). I don't even buy Ult. Spidey and the Ultimates anymore monthly (I'm saving the Ultimates for TPB...no spoilers pleeeeze!). Mark Millar's run with J.R. Jr. and Klaus Jansen on Wolverine is over so I no more reason to get that. Wanna talk about how important your inker is??? Jansen's work on Romita Jr.'s Electra during the last run made her look & specifically "move" as she did when she premiered on Frank Miller's Daredevil .
I think Bendis is overworked and needs a break seeing I stoped getting NEW AVENGERS and suprisingly enough POWERS . Bendis' run on DAREDEVIL is coming to an end and that was a few great years of edgier crimefighting with the Marvel Knights Imprint. I'm finishing up Decalogue and the Murdock Papers on TPB. Same with POWERS although I miss the monthly mail bag...
To be painfully honest here, House of M and its results confuses me...I think I need a 10-year old to explain that to me like I explain the DVD player remote to my Mom. The Event Title didn't hold my interest and I don't understand how it effcted the Marvel Universe or Earth 616 yet...and personally found that having Peter Parker shave his head was gratuitous Bendis, who himself is shorn.

DC isn't always better...it's just consistently good. There have been DC stinkers too...speaking of Grant Morrison doing a great job but I'm reminded of the terrible " Invasion! " meta-title and the ANIMAL MAN issue that was the obligatory tie in featuring a great stand alone comic book tale. And I'll suggest to anyone within the sound of my voice to hustle down JLA/TITANS: The Technis Imperative if you love Jimenez' CRISIS art.
http://www.dccomics.com/graphic_novels/?gn=1392
Best costume for Roy "Arsenal" Harper (when Ollie was dead though). Any fan of the Teen Titans will love this reunion of the Orignal not to mention all the other Titans from every incarantion of the team squaring off against the JLA...Jimenez proved he was worthy of drawing INFINITE CRISIS with this work.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Comics Gnome Likes an Old Friend's New Look(and outlook).


Robin #145


Robin #148


See what I see? What do you see?

In the three issues separating these covers, the INFINITE CRISIS resets the DC Universe once again making a brand-new playground. But what happens to Robin, Batman's sidekick & partner? I love to finding out by reading the funnybooks but this got my Spoil-O-Meter percolating...

This is the current Robin at Wikipedia.

Gone is bright Green. And the horrid stylized "R" and a return to a more traditional logo. Also is he younger??? He sure looks younger and the CRISIS promises to make many changes. This is called "One Year Later" and we will be filled in on that year's events in a weekly called simply "52". All the DCU comics pick up "One Year Later"...in medios res and Robin is very different. It's a great look for what is referred to in the Robin #148 "the Boy Wonder"...not the "Teen Wonder" or "Pubescent Detective". Heck...at this point I don't even know if it's the Tim Drake Robin or is something really wacky & heavy about to happen.


But what Teen Titans #34 due out March 2006...
Robin looks a little older than the previous look. Only after the CRISIS is over will we know for sure.

I recently re-read Robin: Year One



A "Retro" retelling of Robin I's first year and it made me miss the days of Pixie Boots and a Kid Sidekick. Robin in his Year One was very young and a very good addition to the Caped Crusader. Over the years he was slowly allowed to age and come into his own hero with Robin becoming a mantle passed on child to child. But along the way, it was cooler to have the sidekick not stay a child long and to be a teenager. The current Robin is about 16 years old and was introduced when the character was 13. The original Robin was a boy of about 10 to 12. And that's something very iconic of the character I wanted to see a return to...I wonder if that's the case.
I'll just have to keep reading, huh? I just love serialized entertainment and fantastic fiction.

'Namaste,
Rev. Sully
THE SMOKING PUCK!

December 22, 2005
By Rev. Sully

All the Bruins, All the Gawds...only for a Southie Sawbuck
Aka: I have an Excuse for not Calling but do the “B”s?


Ahem...my mother would call me a “Dirty Stay-Out” when I wouldn’t check-in within a respectable frame of time. Assuming that I was out having too good a time I didn’t have Two-Bits and Two Minutes for his Poor Ma. Maybe I was at a game, Ma. Like I ever call my Ma from the Bruins game. I’d bring her instead. Reminds me of this one time years ago in the Old Gahhden. It was my 20th birthday and my mother takes me to dinner and the idea comes up that we scalp some tickets off of Causeway and take in that night’s Bruins/Islanders game. She’s always had fun birthday ideas; for my 13th she got my ear pierced. We were in the Balcony Loge 99. Way up top in the corner but in the front row. You couldn’t see the center ice scoreboard because you were above it and looking down. Ma comes back from the concession stand with two Cokes and then pulls a bottle of Jaegermiester out of her Bag. Ma proceeds to spike our sodas and “cheers, big ears”. The Nigh-Infamous $10 seats in the New Gahhden were kinda like the Old Barn’s Balcony Loge. So Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to my Ma, first and foremost. And to the rest of you. See you in the New Year with more Smoking PUCK. God Bless, Salut, ‘Namaste, L’Chaim, Aloha, Was Alaikum Saalam, Slainte, Skoal and anything else I can toast to you this Holiday Season...


Here’s to the Black & Gold and God’s Good Game of Hockey! HUZZAH! Happy New Year.


The Ten Dollar tickets

ISBIZTAH, YOU SKATE LIKE MY SISTAH!!!”
This phrase flew from my mouth with the relative ease of a rock from a Palestinian child’s hand. I was a Gallery Gawd...sitting on High in the Balcony of the Gahhden. Section 305...Row FIFTEEN! There were napkin dispensers and latex gloves in well-lit locations in the event of Volcanic Nosebleeds.


The View from Section 305.

And these were the legendary Ten Dollar Tickets. The “New NHL” attempt at reconciliation with lowering their ticket prices. There are only 16 rows in the house that are Ten Dollar Seats but I digress...The only thing behind me was the big yellow concrete wall of the TD Banknorth Garden. I can stand on my feet all night long without pissing anyone off with the exception of the poor slobs in front of me getting beer spilled on them.

As soon as we got there, the big local guy in the vintage old San Jose Sharks jersey was revving up his A*Hole Engine buy welcoming our new center, “Hey Primeau, YOU SUCK!!!”. I usually get my dander up over this but this was special. It was after Labor Day and I was wearing white sneakers. I am a self-hating Yankee. Born & bred in Beantowne Faire. I had a T Pass before my Driver’s License. So I threw at the ice “Hey Stuart! Glen Feathahstone is lookin’ foah his numbah!”
The Big Guy, who was celebrating Cap’n Joe’s departure with the his fashion choice said, “Did you just make a Feathahstone joke???”
It was all-good. As Denis Leary said in this year’s “New NHL” season advertisement, we are a tribe...are we not? At least there was no reason to throw crap at the ice; I would not go there. Not as though one could hit the ice from up there.

The Bruins shoot twice in this end. The Bruins had it going all game against the first place Ottawa Senators. This was the first game after Cap’n Joe Thornton was traded to the San Jose Sharks. There is not a bad seat in the house. I had that same thought ten years ago when I came to the first Bruins regular season game in the new Barn, the building formerly known as the FleetCenter. I think they are the same seats...and they didn’t cost $10.00 back then. Ever.


On a personal note: what’s brewin’
I’m sorry the PUCK has not been out there every week, especially in the midst of Hockey Season. There is more to talk about than just the NHL. The Turin Olympics are afoot and no Bruins on Team USA, BTW. But there is a Bruin on the German team! I have no excuse for lack of recent PUCK. I once pledged a Fraternity (and quit right before Hell Week) and learned the phrase “excuses have the effective range of Zero Metres”. I got tired of playing stupid human tricks to impress strangers but the cliché stayed with me. That same Fraternity was asked to leave Mission Hill a few years later. Something scandalous I assure you besides the videotape out there with a certain Frat President in a porno but I digress... I do fondly remember one of the Brothers was a suburban Mass-Hole...the rest were mostly from Long Island for some odd reason. This Brother had the Greek Letters on his sweatshirt cut from what appeared to be Boston Bruins bedsheets or the such. His nickname was “Slif” and was an ex-Hockey player from one of those Academies; “ex” because of a knee injury. Hockey is Life in New England. I think I was the impetus for coining the esoteric Frat quote, “who quits before Hell Week?” though. The Bruins playing as they are isn’t the reason for my lack of letters and links. Sometimes you just gotta sit back and watch them play. I listen to Sports Radio at an alarmingly increasing rate. My secret addiction is the mindless babbling brook of WEEI’s Dale & Holley Show, 10AM to 2PM Monday to Friday. The call-ins kill me...making me appreciate the BSM a little more with reviewing voicemail instead of discourse with the listener. You know the old cliché about opinions and A*Holes, don’tcha? Dale Arnold is a Hockey man but there is only so much hockey one can talk. The Patriots playoff bound. Benedict Damon in Pinstripes. I even know Dickau has a Big Ow and how. So when it’s time for the Bruins Spotlight the only thing to talk about is still the Thornton trade. Sometimes hockey talk can be as boring as the product on the ice. Looking at My Yahoo!’s Bruins page, it’s good to know our traded Cap’n still leads the team with 33 points. As of this writing San Jose’s Jumbo Joe leads the NHL with 37 assists.

The Bruins have had a dismal December going into the end of the month. 3-for-7 with 5 games remaining. Two of those games are a classic “Home-And-Home” match-up of Original Six rivals. The Home-And-Home Games are “Old Time” Hockey at its best and especially against a division rival such as the Maple Leafs of Toronto. Game One tonight at the New Gahhden. Game Two tomorrow night at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. The Bruins are 2-1-1 going into Meetings #’s Five and Six of eight this season against the Leafs. The Leafs scored Nine Goals beating the NY Islanders in their last game and are a hungry team for division points. This Home-And-Home Series should deliver the goods for Entertaining Hockey.

A coming new Year for the Bruins in the “New NHL”. What we thought would work on paper before the season started...didn’t. How to build a good team in this new Age of Ice Hockey? Who has it right? Who are the players to look forward to? Who will be the first super stars of the 21st Century? The playoffs are coming sooner than you think and the Bruins could be on the outside looking in if they remain entirely consistent. Good thing Change is the Essence of the Cosmos or else We the Gallery Gawds would be screwed.


'Namaste

And Happy Holidays & a very Happy New Year,

Rev. Sully

Come visit Channel Ocho for more PUCK.
The Smoking Puck is featured at the Boston Sports Massacre. The “BSM” is a Boston-based weekly Sports PodCast.
Drunk had twice the lethal alcohol level - Yahoo! News

Monday, December 19, 2005

Jill and I are back from our Honeymoon in Kenya. The safari was fantastic, and we got some amazing pictures.

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74129897&size=m
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74130207&size=m
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74130092&size=m
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74130768&size=m
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74129491&size=m
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74129376&size=m
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=74148630&size=m

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

The Comics Gnome Reads the Writing on the Wall


Infinte Crisis #3 cover

Ok...this cover was done by Jim "Insert Angelic Choir Here" Lee.


The other cover is done by original Crisis on Infinite Earths penciller George Perez.


Infinite Crisis #3 cover

The dueling covers are an obvious way to get more of your money. DC instantly doubles the $3.99 price with offering two covers with the collector who wants them all. The Comics Gnome still advises rolling them up and inserting the funnybook into your back pocket to read at a whim. There's a Buddhist Koan in there somewhere butI digress...

I will be steadfast and not anal retentive. I will only purchasone and I will choose wisely. So far for issues #1 & 2, I've scored the Perez covers but this December 28th, I'll be getting the Lee.

Look at the covers carefully and ask yourself...just WHAT the H-E-Dubble Hockeysticks is going on with the Super Friends??? Finding out is part of the fun in serialized entertainment.

'Namaste,
Rev. Sully

Thursday, December 01, 2005

THE SMOKING PUCK!

December 1, 2005
By Rev. Sully

Koo-koo ka choo Mrs. Robinson, Jumbo Joe has left and gone away...hey hey hey
aka: spare some Change, brother?


One of the mantras of life I’ve taken along this Path is this: Change is the Nature of the Cosmos. Change is Elemental. Change just is.

I’m still going to the Bruins Game tonight against first place division rival the Ottawa Senators. I will continue to support my currently last place team with hopes of entertaining Hockey for a full 60 regulation minutes. I’m going to check out those $10.00 tickets I’ve heard so much about to boot. The TicketMaster Dot Com ticket surcharge was $7.00 each. Eddie Vedder was right but I digress...why did we continue with the online purchase? We wanted our $10 tickets, that’s why. This has been the “cheapest” seat in Beantowne Faire since I can remember $6.00 Bleacher tickets as a kid.
I will be wearing my Thornton jersey to the Bruins game tonight all the same.

Some people are steamed like a mussel over this Blockbuster trade. Some people are delighted as a child on X-Mas Morn. As a practitioner of an acute sense of humor, I personally know that you can’t please all the people all the time. But the Gallery Gawds of the Gahhden have been given the News: the face of the Franchise, three-time All Star, first overall Number One draft pick Cap’n Joe Thornton has been traded away and it’s set off a Nor’easter of reaction. One could smell the change of the season in the air or rather...on the ice. The Bruins need not suffer and strain against the gale force wind...the Bruins instead can change and adapt. Survive. Sports in their own way are like a Darwinian Ant Farm. Already the Bruins have made several changes for “This New NHL”, signing a plethora of free agents after the “Long Offseason” and struggling with their younger established talent to get them resigned. From trades for sealing cracks in the Defense wall to waiving obsolete players...but it just wasn’t enough. The Bruins in the month of October skated .500 going 7-for-14. A paltry 3-for-13 in November and a continual feeling of being buried alive under a mountain of talent in the Northeast Division.

It has come down to talent and team, or in otherwords...the talent and the team. The onus is on the anus of the players. The Coach and Management do not give up in the last minutes of the third period. Management’s blame for any bad season will never be suspect in Boston but the Players have responsibility of what they have control over. The Ice. Management is exercising what they have control over; The Personnel.

It is still the “New NHL”. It is a new world. And the world changes as it turns in the Cosmos. Joe Thornton is gone. It really is an end of an Era. Go West, young man...go West. San Jose is nice. Downtown San Jose is pretty & modern. It’s a drive away from San Francisco. Joe will love it there. Thornton’s laid-back and easy-going ways might be a perfect fit for Northern California. San Jose shied away from signing free agents in the “Long Offseason” and so far the Sharks have been as bad as the Bruins, inhabiting last place in their Pacific Division of the Western Conference. In addition to citizenship in the Bay Area, “Jumbo Joe” gets to skate once again with former Bruins defenseman Kyle McLaren and play alongside 1st cousin Scott Thornton. Built-in road roommates such as these will ease his transition, I assure you. Joe will be fine.

So too will the Bruins be fine. The Bruins will survive without Joe Thornton. The Bruins will adapt and they will adjust. The Bruins will continue to strive in this New NHL. Three new faces on the bench just waiting to listen to what the Coach tells them to do on the Ice. Joe Thornton by himself merited three players in exchange. A solid defenseman in Brad Stuart. A very speedy forward with good hands Marco Sturm. A big checking line center Wayne Primeau, younger brother of Philadelphia Flyers captain Keith Primeau. Patrice Bergeron returns to his natural position at Center with Thornton’s departure and is Heir Apparent for the Face of the Franchise & the Defining Player of the Next Bruins Era. I look forward to perhaps Marco Sturm playing High Speed Catch with flashy winger Sergei Samsonov. Speedy, good-passing forwards can open up the Offensive Zone like an electric can opener these days with restrictions on Obstruction.

In this Universe of Change, there tends to be symmetry and balance somewhere smuggled in the Chaos of the Cosmos. On the Microscopic level of life to the Macroscopic view of the Heavens, there are checks & balances...odd harmonies & even structures for some strange reason. So using this and trickling down to mundane life one can fairly say that there are good teams and then there are bad teams. When there are 30 teams, there are bound to be a few stinkers in the apple basket. There cannot be 30 first place or even 30 Elite teams. It just doesn’t work like that. Things will change for the Bruins, that much is assured.

“Look around you, all you see are sympathetic eyes”. Check out the Thornton trade fallout here with some of the Best Sports Minds in Beantown at Boston Dot Com’s Bruins page with Boston Globe’s Nancy Marrapese-Burrell, Kevin Paul DuPont and Jackie MacMullen. And to the three new Bruins I’ll say welcome and “stroll around the grounds until you feel at home”. Hey hey hey.



'Namaste,

Rev. Sully

Come visit Channel Ocho for more PUCK.
The Smoking Puck is featured at the Boston Sports Massacre. The “BSM” is a Boston-based weekly Sports PodCast.

Monday, November 28, 2005

the Comics Gnome Loves life seen Through the Panels



This one is called "The Perry Bible Fellowship" by Nicholas Gurewich and I read this Comics Strip in Boston's Weekly Dig. The Dig is a free publication which is all the rage again in Beantowne Faire. The Phoenix started free, became a pay paper and went back to being free. The Metro is new and has always been free. I see free Boston Herald at train stations on Rush Hour AMs. The Boston Globe wax & wane between a 25 cent and 50 cent price depending on where & when you buy one. The Sunday Globe is in no danger. Apparently people still like their print media over coffee and not the coffee over their laptop...but I digress...
The Dig keeps me company on many a commute. Just by reading, I found out that a co-worker writes music columns at the Dig. Thanks for the read, Luke O'Neil.

Tracts
are also free publications but all together a different aspect in Sequential Art. I boosted this link from Cruel Site of the Day.


The very Special Thankgiving Strip...The Missing Day
.

For those with the interests of journalistic intergrity I present the Internet's source of relative truth, the Wikipedia definition of Thanksgiving.

Also while perusing Cruel Dot Com, I stumbled upon more storytelling through a sequence of drawn panels. This time an older piece. "The Fatal Consequences of Masterbation" from the 19th Century.

The 19th Century's Worst Sin Ever...

All about life seen through the panels.

Friday, November 18, 2005

CAIRO, November 7 (RIA Novosti, Igor Kuznetsov) - French diving archeologists have discovered the foundation of the ancient lighthouse of Pharos in Alexandria, the seventh wonder of the world.

The director of the Alexandria national museum, Ibrahim Darwish, said Sunday that the lighthouse, which was destroyed by two earthquakes in the 11th and 14th centuries, had occupied an area of 800 sq m north of the city's eastern harbor.

The lighthouse consisted of three towers stacked one on top of the other largest to smallest and reached 120-137 meters (390-450 feet) in height. On top of the lighthouse, there was a bronze chalice holding smoldering coal. A complicated system of mirrors made it possible for travelers to see the smoldering coal from a distance of tens of kilometers (up to 60 miles).

The lighthouse was built by Greek architect Sostratus for King Ptolemy II (284-246 BC). It was erected on the eastern side of the island of Pharos at the entrance to the harbor of Alexandria. Earthquakes scattered the remains of the lighthouse all over the harbor, and only now have archeologists established its exact location.

In July, Governor Salam El Mahgoub called on Egyptian and international organizations to restore the lighthouse, a project that will cost $100 million.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

THE SMOKING PUCK!

November 17, 2005,
By Rev. Sully

Who??? Nah, the Kids Are Alright...The Class of 2006 is OK.
aka ...but are the Bruins all right???



6:00PM before the Bruins/Maple Leafs Game...

I don’t wanna talk about it much but I gotta a little. I just wanna watch entertaining hockey. Dig? I’m not gonna waste time, server space, copy and pixels bemoaning what’s wrong with the Bruins and how to fix it. What is wrong is really simple because one thing is painfully evident: the Bruins need to play deeper into games. They need to play hard all game long. In the words of the Gallery Gawds of the Gahhden, they really need to “Shoot, Skate, Hit ‘Em!!!” until the last buzzer of the 3rd period. That is Hockey and that is the way Hockey is played, for 60 regulation minutes. This “New NHL” is wide-open and unforgiving. The Officials relentlessly call penalties because the NHL actually wants scoring to be up.

Tonight’s opponent in an Original Six match-up, the Toronto Maple Leafs leads the league with the Power Play advantage, scoring 25.2% of the time. The Bruins need to stay out of the “Sin Bin” because they do so because right now they average 16.7 minutes in the Penalty Box. For the “mouth breathers” that means if the Bruins are called for their due 8 minor penalties, the Leafs will score 2 Power Play goals. Toronto is a scary Northeast Division rival and the Bruins have not fared well against teams from their division (1-6-1 versus the Northeast). Our Season record against the Leafs is 1-1 and this is the 3rd of 8 meetings this year. The Bruins had a four-day break to refocus & re-energize since their last game, losing Saturday, November 12 to the New York Islanders. The Bruins are looking to avoid a four game losing skid mark on the tighty whiteys of their home ice. The Bruins are 3rd in the league with 33.3 shots on goal per game but keep losing the 3rd period battles.

I heard on a Sports Radio “bump” from a call-in fan that with the Rule change, “the Bruins shoulda got the games shortened to 2 periods...they’d be fraggin’ undefeated”! ‘Nuff said.


Rev. Sully and Smoking PUCK Productions proudly bring to you...The NHL Class of 2006
aka I think Intrepid Peter is nap-drooling all over his control “bored”


Players and gentlemen of the class of '06:

Wear Visors.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, Visors would be it. The long-term benefits of Visors have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now...

The Calder Memorial Trophy is the award given to the NHL’s Rookie of the Year. Every year, the Smoking PUCK tends to keep track of who’s hot in the Freshman Pack because they usually become the future Super Stars of the NHL. In the last season before the “Long Offseason”, the PUCK had two very selfish reason to pay attention to the Calder Hunt; Bruins rookies Patrice Bergeron and the eventual winner of the 2004 Calder Trophy Andrew “Rayzor” Raycroft. “Bergie” Bergeron had a late season injury and ended up missing 11 games, thus taking away from his offensive numbers against the other Calder finalists Michael Ryder of Montreal and Trent Hunter of the NY Islanders. This year in the “New NHL” there is Spin and then there is Spin-o-Rama. Only the end of the season will tell us who really is the Best in the Class of 2006 and not the pre-season expectation of the Press...but I digress.

I’ve had the sheer blessing of hockey on the television for three straight nights, counting tonight’s Bruins/Leafs game. It began Tuesday on OLN watching the only NHL Hockey that was available on TeeVee, the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Washington Capitals. It takes a real fan to tune into this match. The Capital’s 2nd pick overall (1st round), the rookie sensation Alexander Ovechkin scored to tie the game with 1:15 remaining in the 3rd period and shot the winner in the Shootout. On OLN HD Wednesday night, The Pittsburgh Penguins played interstate & division rivals the Flyers in Philadelphia featuring the NHL’s “Next One”, the much ballyhooed Penguins 1st overall 2005 draft pick, 18 year-old Sidney Crosby. Crosby, in addition to scoring a goal in the 3rd period, scored the game winner in Overtime on a brilliant breakaway. Crosby’s 3rd period goal looked as though he’s been playing in the NHL for as many years as the amount of weeks he’s skated for the Pens, being patient behind the goal looking to pass and then putting the rebound in the back of the net. Crosby and Ovechkin lead the Class of 2006 1-2 respectively as of this writing, Crosby with 9 goals-15 assists-24 assists in 20 games and Ovechkin 14-5-19 in 18 games.

The Bruins contribution to the Calder Hunt this year, so far has to be Brad Boyes. Boyes is playing his first full NHL season and has great hands compounded with good vision & sense. Boyes was drafted by the Maple Leafs in 2000 and played one game for the San Jose Sharks in 03-04 before being traded to Boston and sent to the AHL Baby B’s. So far in 19 games, Boyes is 5-5-10 in 12th place in rookie scoring and seems to be chock full of the Right Stuff. Will he win? Who knows...only the End of the Season but We The Fans might give him the Seventh Player Award if he keeps up his impressive ways off the bench...that is if Patrice Bergeron doesn’t win it first. Rookie Brad Boyes was recently the subject of a great article on Bruins Dot Com.


9:30PM right after the Game...

Uhhhhh...huh. So the Sabres win against the Washington Capitals tonight and with the Bruins losing against the Maple Leafs, Boston drops to last place in the Northeast Division. The Bruins are 1-7-1 against division rivals, have now lost 4 in a row and are under the “.500” mark. We seem to be completely lost and shut down in the 3rd period of games. The Bruins were tied 1-1 going into the 3rd period and received 7 penalties; we were scored on twice. The Bruins outshot the Maple Leafs 32-26. An on par and average game for the 2005-06 Black & Gold so far. We’ve reached the Quarter Pole in this Race at our 20th game in an 82 game season. The 3rd Period is like kryptonite to the Bruins. 4 of the 7 Bruins penalties were called in the 3rd period. 3 unanswered goals, being outshot 11-5. The Bruins face Toronto again next Wednesday, Nov. 23. In between then and now we face Buffalo on Saturday the 19th and the (phooey! I spit on the ground) NY Rangers on Sunday the 20th. Lots of hockey still to be played and a lot of hockey for us to watch.

After the game, I hear the talking heads behind the Sports Desk making excuses & accusations and dissecting the Bruins problems. About physical conditioning and stamina. About lack of on-ice leadership & confidence. I hear the Captain Joe Thornton in the post-game show talk about “working our way out of it”, “keep on getting better” and “still learning and learning to listen to the coach”.
But most of all I heard the Booooos raining down from the Gallery in the last minute of play.


'Namaste,

Rev. Sully

Come visit Channel Ocho for more PUCK.
The Smoking Puck is featured at the Boston Sports Massacre. The “BSM” is a Boston-based weekly Sports PodCast.
The PUCK is also now available at Philly Keith Dot Com. Great, independent Hockey talk from the City of Brotherly Love now with a Beantown Boy chiming in.

All Statistic used in this Smoking PUCK are courtesy of NHL Dot Com’s Statistics page. In the words of Intrepid Peter, “RTFM”.
I Bet Barbie & Ken are jealous
aka These Guys Will Never Make the cast of "Toy Story 3"


Whooo boyeee! Anatomically correct dolls. I wonder what will happen when Robot Chicken gets a hold of this...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Battlefront II just keeps getting better as I play it, and I still haven't explored the vast majority of the options available in the game. I've gotten capital ship combat down to a science, and I'm starting to make effective use of hero characters, but I still don't feel ready to take on human opponents in network play.

I like some of the instant action scenarios too, like "hunt", where then natives try to fend of the invaders, as in Wampa vs. Rebels on Hoth, or Ewoks vs. Empire on Endor.
Ants eat out woman's eye

Wow! That is exceptionally bad practice huh?

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Superman Returns is coming! If you are keen you can watch the trailer here of when you see Harry Potter. I've personally seen enough with the 5 still images posted on IMDB ~ and sadly, I've got a bad feeling about this...

In other news... Joss Whedon recently confirmed to be directing Joel Silver's new Wonder Woman. Also, Sylvester Stallone returns for a sixth time as Rocky Balboa, a tough-as-nails Philadelphia boxing champ. Only now Rocky is old, really old.

Click here to see brief oulines and buyers for scripts written for 'The Flash', 'The Darkness', and also a film called 'Magneto'. Speaking of which, the 3rd X-men installment have just posted thier official (teaser) webite (full version ~ coming soon) which you can see here.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Heya OCHO!


I got a wickid KEWL plug for this week's Smoking PUCK from Brian of Boston Sports Massacre during "The BSM PodCast". Apparently he enjoyed this week's PUCK and gave it words. So I expect you all to put on your Sunday bests in this pre-expected hogging of OCHO's bandwith. ^_^


Like me...


Insert "My Way" performed by Sid Vicious for the audio prompt like at the end of "GoodFellas", huh?

So whatcha waiting for...go use the Boston Sports Massacre PodCast Link Here or in the Sidebar here to listen to the really KEWL OCHO plug. Brian "got" it...I can't wait to take him to a game now.

Hope you throw your best...people are watching. ^_~ WAH!!! GOAT!!!

-Sully

Image pirated from Warren Ellis Dot Com

Thursday, November 10, 2005

That's no iguana Sully... it's a monitor lizard. Very aggressive, very carnivorous, and very difficult to convince to release something it bites. Usually, they swallow prey whole, and they can unhinge their lower jaws to do so. A human would be too big for one to attack, but a human head with a steak strapped to it might be a different story.
The SMOKING PUCK...

November 10,2005
Rev. Sully


Presents a moment of Hockey Zen


The Providence Bruins Third jersey.

In the vernacular of my people, wickid pissah.
Music to Spay Cats To:
Spider the Tylercore and their hit single Skeleton Freak out

I did shut if off about halfway in the song but there was a time for a few seconds that it sounded like real metal and you forget a 5 year old boy is singing. I bet the 5 year old has more range than Kip Winger.



To the Next Generation of Metal Head I humbly say "Oi"and Throw you the Goat.

Oi...

Comliments of Cruel Dot Com.
Yet another reason to love the Japanese

What other culture gave us Ninja, Pokemon, Sushi, Zen Buddhism and teevee shows with Meat Helmets...


And they're in a glass bubble with a hungry iguana with several other girls in meat helmets...then the hysteria starts. Oh the humanity. Oh, the Hugh Manatee.

"My childhood was typical. Summers in Rangoon, luge lessons. In the spring we'd make meat helmets." -Dr. Evil

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

The COMICS GNOME Believes in Better Places...where everyday's Wednesday


Cover art to Infinite Crisis #4 (of 7)

Take a look at this. Infinite Crisis Counseling
OK...the fanboy in me knows that Green Lantern Alan Scott went with his daughter Jade to New Cronus with Donna Troy, who has been retconned into the Anti-Monitor's Harbringer. The Apex Predator is on its way to destroy the Never Ending Battle of Good versus Evil! Or is it the Auntie Monitor with Baby Monitor? Or Could it be Olive OYL who really is the Bad Guy in this Epoch-defining work of funnybook. So if GL Alan Scott is around then Jade's should be around since she's on New Cronos in IC#2. Donna Troy is on the cover. Green Lantern Kyle Rayner is on the cover. Only the fanboy here...me...knows how uncomfortable Kyle Rayner would be around those two women. Old school Teen Titans such as Bumblebee and the Herald. Four Green Lanterns including Kilowog and Guy Gardener. Animal Man. Red Tornado and other characters to boot.

Infinite Crisis #4 won't be released until January 11, 2006, for two more months. And the preceeding statement about the DC Universe (DCU) was really deep. Only people who care, care to remember all the stories. The vast tapestry that makes up the DCU. The melting pot of characters all being judged. You may stay...you may fade unto Oblivion (but not with Oblivion, who was a subconcious construct of GL Kyle Rayner's "Last" GL Ring...). To Comics Limbo until the next Crisis or next time someone remember to put them in a story.

I for one found that since the Comics Gnome left, all I get are DC stories. MARVEL stories are not making it on Wednesday to the Coffee Table. There are arc I want to read such as the Ultimates Vol. 2 but I'm officially waiting for the Trade Paperback. Amazing Spider-Man is getting lost in Meta Title along with the three other Spidey titles. I was getting Ultimate Spider-Man and I have stopped that too. The only three titles I bought on This Random Wednesday were DCU. ThHE FLASH #227 and its new writer/artist team. GREEN LANTERN CORPS: RECHARGE #2 and of course...the redefinition of the DCU, INFINITE CRISIS #2.

INFINITE CRISIS #2 released today was my only reason for going to the Funnybook Bodega. I didn't want to spend much money. So I got the two best things that are going to motivate my motive structure, the Flash and Green Lantern. I'm not even done with my little stack this week but INFINITE CRISIS #2 will entertain. The mosiac panels of DCU History are detailed and illuminating. A Magaical Mystery tour of the Multiverse and what was the Pre-Crisis DC World. A Crisis on Infinite Earths primer and with an ending that'll make you think twice about Earth-2.

So the judgement will begin...and then the culling...Again. If you got a favorite DC hero, now's the time to check in before they get redone.

Someone asked if the $3.99 price was worth it and I said "no"...but would that stop me from buying it on Wednesday. Probably not. I'm in on the 7 issues of INFINITE CRISIS...and whatever playground DC wishes to give me to play on.

Here is what the best model for that would be...

The Justice League Unlimited Animated series on Cartoon Network.

The Animated Series is a great template for which to base a Post INFINTE CRISIS DC Universe. It has all the players. All the characters. Updated, renewed and all current. It fits because it was written, produced and presented this way. It has a loose sense of contintuity its built up over its three seasons, respecting the previous seasons of "Justice League" and even respects & acknoledges Batman: TAS




Superman: TAS




Batman Beyond




in the Bruce Timm style. Timm also is the Executive Producer of the Animated Teen Titans, which breaks from the Timm style (opposed to Matt Groenig's Simpson Style carried over to Futurama) into a more anime feel, using anime type conventions.



The Teen Titans's contintuity with the rest of the Justice League animated show is arguable but there is a sense of contintuiy with the rest of the Animated Universe.

The DC Animated Universe is a great example of what could be accomplished in the wake of INFINITE CRISIS. I love the Animated Universe almost as much as the Big DCU. It's a little simpler and iconic of the characters. In short, it's fun.

And check it out here for a meeting of the DC Animated Universe and CRISIS on INFINITE EARTHS. A great homage to George Perez' Death of Supergirl in CoIE in the Timm Style.



'Namaste and see you in the Funny Pages, Comics Gnome...

Rev. Sully
Yeah, "Earl" is a great show. As I saw in a review a few days back, "It's out karmic payback for enduring 5 years of 'Yes, Dear'."

Galactic Conquest is a great way to play, and I like the new points/purchasing system they added. It's more fun than Battlefront I's version, and that was pretty cool too.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

THE SMOKING PUCK!

November 9, 2005
By Rev. Sully

Defining High Television Entertainment...
aka: Fear & Loathing in the City of Brotherly Love



This is a TEST. A test of the Emergency HD Hockey Broadcast System. The PodCasters and Bloggers of these websites, in voluntary cooperation with madcap hockey reporters have developed this test in the case of a hockey game. The Following “Smoking PUCK” you are about to read will be followed by official news & instructions in the case of a High Definition televised hockey game. If this had been an actual Emergency, the attention signal you receive would include cuss words, libation and the occasional taking in Vain of a Lord’s Name. This concludes this test of the Emergency HD Hockey Broadcast System.

OK. Here’s where the fun begins. What we’re gonna do is simple. I’m going to watch the November 8, 2005 7:00PM hockey game on OLN HDTV, eating Ribs and drinking Beer. The scene could have played out at our local HOOTERS but for the sake of journalistic integrity, distraction must be kept to a minimum. The opponents on this national broadcast are great & respectful rivals since the early 1970s. The Boston Bruins are playing the Philadelphia Flyers. And I will play narrator to the Greatest Game on Earth. Tune in, drop out, grok this and screw that...we’re going to a Hockey Game and I make no promises of leaving in one peace. This is not a test.



The Pre-Game Report sponsored by Uncle Posty’s Rheumatiz Concoction...if it’s not Posted, it’s not Posty.
Aka: Intrepid Peter gets his yawn on


As of this writing 16 games into the “New NHL” Season, the Bruins are third place in the Northeast Division with 7 wins, 5 losses and 4 overtime losses for 18 standing points. The Flyers are 12 games into the season, second place in the Atlantic Division are 8-3-1 for 17 points. Philly is “H. A. Dubble Tee” HAWT! So far, the Bruins have been overall Underwhelming, in spots Magnificent and they really need to play late into the game. The Flyers possess sheer puissance on their ice with Simon Gagne leading the league in goals with 15 and Peter Forsberg leading in assists with 21 and second in points with 25. Philly’s Plus/Minus is intimidating with four players in the Top 10; Forsberg +13, Joni Pitkanen +14, Gagne +13, & Make Rathje +12. They have three defensemen who all measure in at 6’-5”.

The Bruins are bit of a Lunch Pail Gang sporting a hodgepodge of talent still finding their Clique. Lines combinations change like the specials on restaurant menu. Injuries plague with contributing talent such as Brian Leetch, hardnosed Ian Moran and Pat Leahy being on the Injured Reserve. Forward Shawn McEachern has a Plus/Minus of –6. Andrew “Rayzor” Raycroft is nursing a strained hamstring. Everybody got a sob story, eh? The Flyers average 33.4 Shots per Game and the Bruins 33.2 SOG/game. If the Flyers throw Antero Niitymaki in goal it could be a rematch of Finnish goaltenders if Hannu Toivonen gets the nod for the Bruins. These two goalies from Finland faced off in last years American Hockey League Division Finals for the respective AHL affiliates with Niitymaki bringing the Phantoms to the Calder Cup over Toivonen’s Baby Bruins. But Philly’s Robert Esche is the solid starter and “Rayzor” Raycroft might be back as early as tonight. We’ll see before the puck drops.


Game On. This segment is brought to you by Royal Roast Beef Sammich Shop and Woody’s Liquors of Orient Heights

7:03PM
Firstly...OLN’s Kenny Albert reminds me of the Mayor in “The Nightmare Before Christmas”. It’s really spooky and I had to say something first off the bat.




You thought I was kidding, eh?



The HD Broadcast is breathtaking. I promised Ribs for dinner but this little piggy got Roast Beef...

First Period
7:09 PM
Hannu Toivonen versus Robert Esche. Darn for the goalie match-ups but now the face-off fills the screen. And I mean “fills” the screen. Sports are made for HDTV. Football, baseball...especially Hockey.

7:12 PM
I find out in the broadcast that Flyers captain Keith Primeau is out. Concussion. So is Boston’s Glen Murray. Flu. I do read the Injury Report on Game Day. What can you do when two large heavy hitters are sitting. Shaddup & watch the game is whatcha do.

7:22 PM
I say Uh-oh every time Peter Forsberg shoots the puck...especially on the Power Play. He does good things when he touches the puck.

7:28 PM
Coming back from a commercial break, the face-off is missed due to a human-interest fluff piece with a player. I hate when face-offs are missed on televised games. As if the TV director should suffer a William Wallace fate. I have to be careful not to spill beer on the laptop, again...or I’ll suffer the William Wallace fate myself.

7:37 PM
Joe Thornton makes two great shot on the Flyers net but then Bruins defensman Andy Alberts gets the gate for Elbowing. UH OH! Forsberg shot the puck on the PP. @#$%!!! Because ex-Bruin Mike Knuble scores on the Power Play. Mike Knuble was a pretty good Bruin for 4 seasons and signed with the Flyers in the “Long Offseason”.

7:40 PM
And another Boston penalty...

First Intermission

BOS 0, PHI 1

7:45 PM
This HDTV is just wonderful. I can see the stitching on Robert Esche’s catching glove and it says “Chico”. So far the best part of the game has been the Simpsons during the break and the “Big Lebowski” reference. The video game in the bowling alley is called “Time Waster”. Nelson Muntz crying, singing...wow. Ha-haw.


Second Period

8:00 PM
And the Bruins go down two men. Two Briuns now are in the Penalty Box. And a hot save by Toivonen! Shoulder save by Toivonen! Shorthanded shot by the returning Nick Boynton! The Bruins suffer and survive a huge, long Penalty Kill. Kenny Albert continues to irk me by over accenting the “T”s in names. Namely “Thornton”...or as Kenny says it ThornTon. The Bruins NESN Road man Jack Edwards does this too. It’s the most annoying sound next to fingernails on a blackboard. Both of them do the same thing to BoynTon. FYI: This is called “CamelCase”

8:19 PM
I saw Flyers forward Donald Brashear on the bench at the period break and notice I really haven’t see him on the ice all game long. I then speculate when the Brashear/Colton Orr fight will happen. Sometimes the two tough guys will square off in a close game like this. Two champions sent to the Mat, especially when it comes to the Flyers versus the Bruins. Cementheads don’t fight for fighting’s sake anymore which is a good thing so we’ll see if they end up dancing or not tonight.

8:25 PM
Did I mention we got a large order of Chicken Fingers. The box was bigger than my skull. I’ll be eating them all night long. Brian Engbloom,the color commentary to Kenny Albert’s play-by-play on OLN makes little sense and I feel dirty for some reason and wish to take a long shower after enduring his opinion for the last 45 seconds. But Patrice Bergeron and P.J. Axelson been looking strong all night.

8:32 PM
Shawn McEachern Power Play goal!!! From the high point. Once again proving that shots on goal makes goals happen. Good for him but it won’t help his Plus/Minus. A Power Play goal does nothing for the goal differential; only short-handed and even strength goals.

8:34 PM
The Bruins will have 1m 22sec on a 5-on-3 Power Play when we start the Third Period. It’s time for the...

Second Intermission

BOS 1, PHI 1

This is the MOST of CBS’ “NHIS” I’ve ever seen in my life. The Third Period I know will compete with NBC’s “My Name Is Earl” because I too am enchanted with this show and it’s broadcast in HD.


Third Period

8:57 PM
And we miss the Bruins score to go up 2-1 because we were watching “NCIS”! I mean it was gripping. We tune in with 16:32 left in the 3rd. DAMN!!! Sergei Samsonov scores a Power Play goal 56 seconds into the period. ”Meathead” had the Remote. This wouldn’t have happened on my watch.

9:02 PM
Uh-oh. No Forsberg didn’t shoot the puck...”My Name Is Earl” is on NBC. I suddenly fear for how much of the remaining game I will get to see. Yikes!

9:08 PM
“Stole Beer from Golfer” is on EARL tonight. This show is worse than Doritos! It is funny. It is thoughtful. It is...it is silly, who am I kidding.

9:12 PM
6’-5” Flyer Chris Therien goes behind his net to joust with Bruin Patrice Bergeron for the puck. Bergeron is left standing. I notice these things.

9:15 PM
Joe Thornton STUFFS it home! Short side! BOS 3, PHI 1. WOOOOOOOO!!!


Wooooooooo!!!
”Nature Boy” Ric Flair. The voice behind the “WOOOOOOOO!” in the TD BankNorth Garden when the Bruins score a goal and also a notorious wrestler.

9:19 PM
Simon Gagne scores bringing the Flyers within one goal late in the game. The Bruins before this had kept Gagne without a Shot on Goal all game long. With the new rules, sometimes you have to let the Player shoot or else get a dumb penalty.

9:21 PM
The Bruins ice the puck with 2:05 left in the 3rd Period. A face-off in their zone and they have to keep that tired line out there. And the Flyers goalie is pulled for the extra skater!

AND THE FLYERS SCORE! G*DAMMIT!!! 23.4 seconds left in the 3rd period and with the Goalie pulled. The Bruins missed a shot on the open goal which would have sealed the game. Joni Pitkanen from Peter “the Great” Forsberg on a beautiful breakaway. The Bruins were not looking to keep possession of the puck and the Flyers were. Another Bruins game let go before the buzzer. The Bruins are consistent in doing this so far this season. The Bruins leaned back on their lead and the Flyers made them pay for that. And we go to...


Overtime

NHL Overtime consists of a 5 minutes long period with four skaters against four skaters. A Power Play would make it 4-on-3. Next goal in the O.T. Period wins or we go to the much ballyhooed Shootout.

9:27 PM
Game on!

9:29 PM
And Flyers defenseman Joni Pitkanen scores again...1:55 into Overtime. Flyers win 4-3.

At least Mike Knuble and Joni Pitkanen came out for the Three Stars of the Game for a skate & a wave. Joe Thornton was awarded the Second Star but was not there for the Stars Skate. Why wouldn’t the player, even on the opposing team not take his deserved skate for being named Star of the Game but I digress...

9:33 PM
And EARL is all over too.


“Earl” played by Jason Lee
See Earl’s Karma List.



The Post Game Report sponsored by Cousin Posty’s Post-Nifigant, Post-actular, Hitchin Post Doilies. Don’t go Postal...GO POSTY!

Uggggh. Yes. This is the feeling of the Gallery Gawd rights now. Uggggh, indeed. OOOOOF! Biff! Bap! Ka-POW! And all the other onomatopoeia we can fit in right now.

The Bruins have been faring well against teams outside of their division but have been slacking later during the games themselves. Even in the 6-3 depanting of the Pittsburgh Penguins last Saturday, the Bruins did give up two goals in the last eight minutes of the 3rd period of that game too. The Flyers were 6-1-0 in the home games leading up to tonight’s game.

For the record and unobserved by me Flyers Donald Brashear actually played 6m 06sec of hockey all night while Bruins tough guy Colton Orr spent 1min 32sec.

Well...I hope you enjoyed this Test of the Emergency HD Hockey Broadcast System. The HD Televised Hockey game is a sight for sore eyes. So my advice to you...your official news & instructions is to go an see an NHL Hockey game broadcast in High Def format. It could change your mind about how “badly” a Hockey game is showcased on TV. About if the game is too hard to follow...after watching an HDTV presentation, is that still valid? But let’s hear it for a proper way to view the game, with wholeness. Hopefully you too will get to watch NHL Hockey in fullness and “grok” also in that amount. The Bruins and the Flyers face-off against each other three more times this season and I will be there or in HD for them all. You got that right, bunky.



'Namaste,

Rev. Sully

Come visit Channel Ocho for more PUCK.
The Smoking Puck is featured at the Boston Sports Massacre. The “BSM” is a Boston-based weekly Sports PodCast.
The PUCK is also now available at Philly Keith Dot Com. Great, independent Hockey talk from the City of Brotherly Love now with a Beantown Boy chiming in.

All Statistic used in this Smoking PUCK are courtesy of NHL Dot Com’s Statistics page. In the words of Intrepid Peter, “RTFM”.
That's the spirit ~ use the force.

I'm not further past you with the 501st missions. It took me a while to get used to the controls again. I am very distrated by the Galactic Conquest option at the moment. I'm not having a very successful go at it either... It's fun trying to take over the Galaxy though. Now just to figure out how to use the Bothan Spy to his best use.
I made it as far as the Knightfall mission last night while playing the 501st troopers. I still haven't had much luck playing the Heros though... I lose Anakin pretty quickly to the Jedi Master at the temple. Maybe I should just crush his throat instead of trying to fight him.

Monday, November 07, 2005

*Stunned* I just had to kill more than a dozen Jedi and the Queen of Naboo (in teh same outfit as Ep 1 Padme)... I kind of feel a little sick inside.

I've been stuck of the Galactic Conquest missions for a while. Much harder than in the first Battlefront... much more interesting, and cool though.
STARLARKING: The Art of Walking the Sky


Here’s when I wish Bergie would chime in. She might be Queen Geek but I don’t think she’s a Gamer. So we might have the Great And Mighty Bergs beat here, kiddos...for once.

Star Wars Video Games. What a great way to enjoy the Saga. You get to live it a bit. So OCHO I ask you...

What would be your favorite Star Wars Video Game to date?

I currently don’t have a game unit in which to play and I’ve played enough over the years. I bet only Preacher Matt would remember (probably still owns) the Atari 2600 and the Jedi Arena game and how to play it.




Screen Shot

If Battlefront II is as good as everyone says it will be, I’ll join you online in April after the PS3 comes out. Built in modem that one has. In celebration of all things good and Star Wars...and without further eloquence, here is Rev. Sully’s Star Wars Video Game Hit List:

Dark Forces (I). 1995, PC

Great first person shooter. A real “DOOM” clone with a fanboy skin. This was played at an Internet café of the mid-1990s in Cambridge. I could have bought 4 copies of this game. Really sank a lot of quarters into this one. Fighting Stormtroopers and Boba Fett was a blast.


Rebel Assault II: The Hidden Empire. 1996, PlayStation One.

I didn’t care for the First Person shooter parts but the Ship flying parts were great even flying the very testy TIE Fighter. The “movie” scenes were pretty good too.


Masters of Teras Kasi. 1997, PlayStation One.

All of OCHO could say this is “our” game. Sexual Thok-a-lit. ‘Nuff said.


LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game. 2005, PlayStation 2, et al.

One of the Best and most fun Video Games out there. Uncomplicated controls and “joie-de-vive”. I pray for a sequel starring the Original Trilogy. Non-gamers LOVE to play this game. It’s one part Super Mario Bros and another watching a scaled down version of the movie. The cutest thing is Padme and her little bump in the Episode III Level. Pure good fun.


Bounty Hunter. 2002, PlayStation 2, et al.

I got this as a gift and I got quickly hooked on it. I liked the option of either wasting a certain bad buy or collecting his bounty. My only regret is that I never finished the game. It was a bit expansive and I do like to explore in the game. It took a long time but the movie scenes were great. Also Temura Morrison’s voice to the playable Jango Fett was great casting.


The Arcade Game. 1983, Coin-Op Arcade.

Upright version but my favorite was the Sit Down Cockpit version.


Screen Shot.
You are Red Five. You are Luke Skywalker. You are attacking the Death Star in an X-Wing with R2-D2. Obi Wan Kenobi speaks in your ear “the Force will be with you...always”. This game is a legend.


Star Wars Trilogy. 1998, Coin-Op Arcade.

This game had the coolest lightsabre duel mode. With the HUGE screen? Great game.


Episode I Jedi Power Battles. 2000, PlayStation One, et al.

Fun, fun, fun. Along with the Star Wars Episode I Pinball game drove in points of dialog and theme music to be indelibly scratched upon my psyche. The best parts were not only the fancy lightsabre chain combos but also the unlockable mini-games such as the one where you get to poke Jar-Jar Binks with a Gungan electrostaff.

Honorable Mention:
Star Wars Episode 1 the Pinball Machine. 1999, Coin-Op Arcade.

Ahhh...good times.


'Namaste and see you looking at the Stars, eh

Rev. Sully
My copy of Battlefront II was supposed to be delivered friday, but I wasn't home to sign for it. I gave them my work address as an alternate delivery site though, so I should have it with me when I come home tonight.

Sully, you should come check it out sometime.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

BTW - Sully thanks for all the links you've provided. Crisis Councelling will likely need to be ongoing, but for this issue I am satisfied. I read it the other night and it all seemes to come together quiet nicely, I can see where they are setting up a lot of the issue for devolopments to be made throughout the series. Looks like it really is going to be a great one.
Well hello there boys, it's certainly been a while since I came for a chat and today I have good cause… STAR WARS: Battlefront II.



Now, while I appreciate the two of you are likely consumed in work and play at the moment, I have been sick with food poisoning for the past week. So, with being required not to go to work, and with the necessity to stay within 100m of my bathroom at all times, Chris was nice enough to find me a new 'toy' to pass the time with. Unfortunately, I'm feeling better, and will likely have to return to work tomorrow.

Now I don't want to spoil the game for you or get your hopes up, but I thought I would stop in and state a few simple facts.

The controls are set up similar to the previous Battlefront, and most of your favorite previous players represent, with a few nice adaptations within each of the regimens. Additionally, the creators have revised some of the weapons provided to certain classes, giving you a lot more versatility if you are quick with the R2/L2 button. Not to mention the addition of the HERO class, or in other words, you get to play with/as your favorite Jedi! While this is very cool, from the novelty aspect, it does seem (to me anyway) that the developers didn't quiet give these characters as much thought as they did the regimented units. But I guess they can work on that in version III.

While the original did allow you to hop into the occasional x-wing, they were impossible to control, forget about trying to accomplish anything with. In this version, the developers have gone out of their way to correct this flaw, and now whole battles are set in the sky. In some, you get a choice of your flying machine and can choose depending on your mission goal.

I'm not really one for on-line play. Frankly I'm scared of going there because I know that I will either hate it or become addicted to it, neither of which I have time for in my weekly schedule at the moment, but I digress. I'm told that it is the multi-player battles that are where this game really takes off, but for now I'm content with the single player modes.

The first option within the single player mode is the Rise of the Republic, in which you get to play as a member of the 501st (all commentated by NZ's own Temuera Morrison - otherwise known as the guy who played Jango Fett) and throughout the period of 10 or so battles you get to go from being one of the 'good guys' to the 'bad guys' under the newly appointed Dark Vader. It then progresses on into the period between ROTS and ANH but I haven’t gotten far into it so will withhold my remarks at this stage.

The battles are much more regimented that in Battlefront, and each is set out in stages, where you have tasks/missions to complete before you can move onto the next stage. This does deter slightly for those out there who just want to get out there and 'blow stuff up'. As you go through you earn points and these unlocks other players for you to choose from in each mission. Unfortunately, these players are re-locked again at the beginning of the next mission (which can be a little annoying). Also, the story of the 501st is quiet interesting to follow, it would have been cool if they had perhaps stepped off into some more of the Clone Wars side stories, but again I digress.

The second single player mode is a Galactic Conquest which is designed kind of like a game of Risk. I haven't gotten too involved in this one yet, but the design of the battles is much more like the original game. You get equal numbers of troops on either side unlike the Republic mode when it is completely dependant on the number of command posts you have acquired, or how closely you have allowed yourself to be guided by the mission tasks.

Overall, it is a very cool game with some wonderful new adaptations, and I do recommend picking it up when you have the opportunity. It will certainly keep you entertained if you are confined to your house for nearly a week. It did me!


Thanks to Gamespot.com. Feel free to go here for screen shots and a full review of the PS2 and new PSP version of Battlefront II.

http://www.gamespot.com/ps2/action/starwarsbattlefront2/

This is going out to all my Peep's ~ yo.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Just because the COMICS GNOME CARES...

More CRISIS COUNSELING!


I could get in trouble for using the phrase "Crisis Counseling" but I post so much at the DC Message Boards about INFINITE CRISIS that I think they'll let it slide.

I found another great CRISIS primer. Easy to read and understandable. Whew! I thought I was the only one who cared about civilians and it's got great Flash nuggets too. No...not animated Internet thingies. I mean THE Flash, Barry Allen who died in the CRISIS and his sidekick KID FLASH assumes the mantle and...this is why we need to explain the CRISES. Check it out here!

'Namaste,
Rev. Sully

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

The COMICS GNOME gets email from Respectable Sources

I was reading things INFINITE CRISIS on the Internet and I came across Scott Tipton’s article on MoviePoopShoot Dot Com. Remember MoviePoopShoot Dot Com...Jay & Silent Bob Strikes Back...et al. Ah...just look it up. It’s a great companion to the Comics Gnome pootings. But I used his email link after reading his CRISIS Primer, which I suggest to KIWI for further info to enjoy her purchase of INFINITE CRISIS #1 and he wrote back to me. I thought it was cool so thanks Scott. Check out “Comics 101” for great comics talk. And Kiwi...he’s got a great Primer for you to catch up (but it includes LOTS of spoilers).

> "Rev. Sully" wrote:
> I just read your CRISIS primer on MoviePoopShoot Dot
> Com. Great stuff, man.
>
> Well...I dunno if you take random links from
> like-thinking individuals but here...
> http://www.thechannelocho.blogspot.com/
> I've been doing the same thing (but not getting paid
> for it).
>
> I love funnybooks and I hope to love the INFINITE
> CRISIS too. I actually got sucked into the DC
> Message
> BORED on the INFINITE CRISIS section. Whew...I
> haven't been sucked into message bored since NPR but
> I
> digress...
>
> Well...just wanted to drop you a line from a person
> that Warren Ellis has told that he "F*ing Hates".
> ^_^
>
> Thanks. I think I'm gonna bookmark your page because
> I like talk of life seen through the Panels.
>
> 'Namaste,
> Rev. Sully
>
> Eric O'Sullivan
> Boston, MA

--- Scott Tipton wrote:

> Dammit! Why didn't I think of "CRISIS COUNSELING"?
>
> Thanks for the kind words. I'll check out your stuff
> as soon as I'm able.
>
> Regards,
> Scott
>

"Rev. Sully" wrote:
May I ask you a question then?

(If you bought your copy like a mere mortal...)

Which cover did you get: the Perez or the Lee?

Thanks, Scott.

-Sully

I bought the Lee because I forgot the Perez was there, then went back the next week and bought the Perez, and sent the Lee to a reader serving in Iraq.


I told him that sending the Lee issue to a reader in Iraq was the coolest thing I heard all week...and it truly is.

'Namaste and see you in the Funny Pages, Comics Gnome...

Rev. Sully
The Comics Gnome offers KIWI Infinitely Crises Counseling

Best Ted Knight Vox here...
Hearing the calls of confusion surrounding the first re-defining event of the early 21st Century, the Comics Gnome brings OCHO Brand Wisdom in hopes of making sense of what’s going on and the question that all new readers ask...”How the heck do I read INFINTE CRISIS #1”???

Kiwi is a good funnybook reader. Kiwi is the Comics Gnome’s first padawan learner and has gone on to spread the value of life seen through the panels. Kiwi wants to enjoy the DC Universe event “INFINITE CRISIS”.

I asked the Comics Gnome about what can Kiwi do to enjoy this Event. The Gnome was on the road and dismissed my query. He was frustrated and simply said, “you take care of this one, Sully”. He was busy, it being Wednesday and pooting fresh stacks of new releases on random coffee tables around Creation. “Do you think Santa could answer a reindeer question on Christmas Eve???” he finished via Blackberry with exotic and vulgar emoticons.

OK, Kiwi...let’s walk.
First you’ll need to inspect the nature of the CRISIS. I suggest you get a beverage, a neck pillow and a few spare minutes and read from OCHO January 2005 Crisis to Crisis: aka Winding Julie’s Wristwatch. Scroll down, ignore the broken image links but read the Gospel According to the Comics Gnome. Way back in January Aught-Five, the big Crisis was the “IDENTITY CRISIS”, a truly remarkable & subtle 7-issue event that was the Starting Gun to everything that is going on now. I still do not want to reveal what happened in that wonderful tale and implore you to go out and get the Trade paperback now available in Funnybook stores everywhere.

And from Wednesday, October 12 and Thursday, October 13, 2005 are the Comics Gnome’s musings on INFINITE CRISIS #1. Check it out here. Scroll down the page or else you’ll be captivated by the Smoking PUCK.
So to answer your question in the most roundabout but consistently “me” fashion; yes. I did buy INFINITE CRISIS #1 (IC#1). My girlfriend Deedee, who likes the occasional funnybook I asked her to read this for this reason alone. I did not feel as though IC#1 was a very good jump-on spot at all for a new reader. Deedee felt that the only parts she could access were the JLA Watchtower scenes on the Moon with the Trinity (Superman, Batman & Wonder Woman). Did you know that the other team’s name was the FREEDOM FIGHTERS?


Issue #1 Freedom Fighters, April 1976

It was good to see the juxtaposition of two doomed Superhero teams in IC#1. I got it. I also got the last full page panel too but if you didn’t read the original 1985 CRISIS on INFINITE EARTHS, you might be a little lost. I reread that huge 12-issue tome after reading IC#1 just for the refresher. Remember: INFINITE CRISIS is the sequel to CRISIS on INFINITE EARTHS and just as influential.

The Dark Age is officially over and the New Age begins here.
Novus Ordo Seclorum.

PS Which cover did you get? The Perez or the Lee?

'Namaste and see you in the Funny Pages, Comics Gnome...

Rev. Sully
Happy Hallowe'en, Samhain, All Saints Day and Mexican Day of the Dead.

We forgot all about Michaelmas, eh?

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Hey Sully - have you Infinite Crisis #1 yet... I picked it up on the weekend, but I'm gonna have to put it down, finish off the Rann-Thanagar War series and the build-up issues preceding it, because I feel like I am truly ruining something before I get the full back story... Love to know what you think if you have picked it up.
I hope you all had a happy halloween.
jack-o-lantern

Monday, October 31, 2005

Ahhhhh Yes...Meathead turned 32 the other day...

Well don't I feel like a crappy friend for not remembering until I read the blog...Great story about the Jumbo-tron though!

Friday, October 28, 2005

THIS Smoking Puck...

is for Patrick Ford


by Rev. Sully
October 27, 2005


Patrick and I were at work. In one of the Circles of Hell trying to cool down. Thinking about and discussing Hockey of course...as we're oft to do because we're both sick & derranged hockey fans. We're both goalies too but I digress...

We were about to listen to the Game on the radio when the subject of "The Great One" came up. yes, that Great One. Wayne Gretzky.

I mentioned that I read a bit of his biography once in a bookstore years ago. His story had pictures in the center of the paperback and the caption mentioned that Wayne had only three fights in his professional career. THREE??? I thought that number was actually ZERO but the pictures in the middle of the paperback made me think thrice.

Well...for Pat...here's one of them.

'Namaste,

Rev. Sully





Tuesday, October 25, 2005

THE SMOKING PUCK!

October 25, 2005
By Rev. Sully

Video Killed the Radio Star but Radio Saved the Hockey Fan...
aka: Awww, “H. E. Double Hockey Sticks”...Happy Birthday, Meathead!


I was in the Bowels of Hell...the newly opened Eighth Circle of Inferno otherwise known as the place at where I work. In my job, it is necessary to work nights so I end up missing televised hockey games with alarming frequency. What can you do? There is always the radio. The radio had not let me down all summer long. Joe & Jerry calling the Red Sox kept me sane in a tormenting, demon-filled & stressful workplace all season long, nary missing a game broadcast on WEEI 850AM on a work night or weekend afternoon. This particular night sweating from the Heat of Hades, I was eagerly listening to WBZ 1030AM radio as the Boston Bruins visited division rivals the Toronto Maple Leafs.
I’ve never questioned why Toronto got “Leafs” and the rest of the English speaking world got “leaves” coming from a town the pulls up their socks and root for their Sox. Toronto is one of the only cities that rival Boston when it comes to something close to “Red Sox Nation”. Maple Leafs’ fans and the Toronto media can give Boston’s National Past Time a true run for the proverbial money. Who would be the football & basketball equivalents? Dallas Cowboys and either L.A. Lakers or Detroit Pistons? I wouldn’t pretend to know or assume. But Toronto “Maple Leafs Province” is a true force to rival Red Sox Nation for World’s Most Passionate Fans...but then there are Futbol Hooligans, huh? Arse-en-NAL!!! Arse-en-NAL!!! Yikes! Those guys make Bruins fans look like golf spectators.


What’s Brewin’? aka: where Intrepid Peter nods off at the Controls.
As I was atoning for my Karma in a brimstone filled Gehenna, the Bruins/Maple Leafs game was on. Immediately following the completion of the Tied-Up Overtime period, I ran for the nearest television to watch the Bruins first regular season Shootout. So what the Bruins gave up a mid-Third period shorthanded goal to tie the game at 4-4, so what if the Bruins were 0-for-10 on the Power Play, so what that the Bruins squandered a 5-on-3 Power Play at the end of the game, so what if the Bruins wasted over three minutes of Power Play time in the Five Minute Overtime Period. Okay...not “so what” but what a great game all things considered. The Bruins are leading the NHL in the Soggy Numbers. “SOG” is a Hockey statistic short for “Shots On Goal”. The Bruins against the Maple Leafs in 65 minutes of play registered 53 shots on net. The previous game against the Pittsburgh Penguins the Bruins made 47 shots on goal, scoring 6 times to boot. The Bruins so far in this season average 34.7 shots on goal per game, leading the league. The League Average is around 25 SOG. The Bruins didn’t stink up the Air Canada Centre...Leafs Goalie Eddie Belfour was simply amazing saving 49 shots in addition to all three Boston Shootout attempts. It is unfortunate that the Bruins are 0-for-6 against Northeast Division rivals so far in the 05-06 Season but there are 72 games remaining. The Bruins are far from a bad team, being three points behind the “Pack”, all other four NE Division teams tied for First Place with 12 standing points still very early in the season.
The Shootout itself though was simply thrilling as I hoped it would be. One concern from the players for a Shootout was the condition of the ice surface itself. A torn-up surface could give the puck a funny hop leading to a bobbled attempt is a valid fear and it was good to see the Zambonis come out and resurface the middle of the rink in the minutes between Overtime and Shootout. Another aspect of the Shootout not yet employed is that the NHL offered the Players the opportunity to not wear their helmets during the Shootout, providing for greater fan visibility. Hey, hat’s off to that idea...I personally think that would be “wicked pissah”, huh?


Happy Birthday, Meathead!
Happy Birthday, Meathead. I lost $20 to Bill Jacobs because I didn’t think you’d live this long; we made this bet in 1990. ”Meathead” is the lesser known nickname of my best friend/housemate/de facto brother to my only child...and also my companion to many, many Bruins home games over the years. Although it is best to use only his nickname here to protect his identity. You know from potential paternity suits and the like but I digress... It was October 24, 2002 and the Ottawa Senators were in Towne. Meathead and I went to the game and I had hatched a plan to do something special for his birthday. Now, I’ve known Meathead for over half my life and I can count on one hand how many times we’ve exchanged birthday presents. We might be close but we’re not that close. So here we were in the house formally known as the FleetCenter enjoying the Hockey game and in the second Intermission what does it say on the JumboTron? Happy Birthday Meathead. Of course it displayed his real name, hidden here for myriad legal & ethical reasons. I had called ahead and made arrangements to have a birthday message shown for Meathead. In an action-packed game, it could be very easy to miss your own message if you’re not diligent. I actually had to run to the Customer Service office to demand that they put it up there in the next period break. There was no charge but a donation to the Bruins Wives Charities (or the such) in a certain denomination was required to fulfill my request of birthday greetings. But his birthday present didn’t end with his name on the Score Board...no. On the way out in the hallways, in the usual drunken stupor that accompanies a full three periods with the required hour “pre-game warm-up”, I had over heard someone say something really dumb about something else and I felt obligated to call him on his stupidity. Literally a passing remark for we were walking past and through...on to the bar for the Post-Game Report. I cannot recall the dumb comment or my response but I do remember “cause & effect”. I kept walking & talking to Meathead until I felt that he was no longer there. I look behind me and see Meathead nose to nose with the guy to who made the remark, and it was getting heated. Well, fists started flying. My initial tug to come-a-runnin’ was replaced by a James Dean-like coolness to lean against the wall and just watch until it should be necessary to come charging in. All Hockey Fans are aware of what happens to the “Third Man In” the Altercation (Rule 56.D states: “A game misconduct penalty, at the discretion of the Referee, shall be imposed on any player or goalkeeper who is the first to intervene in an altercation already in progress...”). As all stupid things go, it’s contagious. A buddy of the Stoopid Comment Guy jumps in the fracas and so I broke my coolness & tackled the Schmuck. Within three seconds, Security was on the four of us like white on rice and we were corralled in two separate directions. For weeks after that all I heard was “You got Meathead punched...in the head...for his birthday”. No one ever remembers the JumboTron. Well, Happy Birthday, Meathead.


'Namaste,

Rev. Sully

Come visit Channel Ocho for more PUCK.
The Smoking Puck is featured at the Boston Sports Massacre. The “BSM” is a Boston-based weekly Sports PodCast.
The PUCK is also now available at Philly Keith Dot Com. Great, independent Hockey talk from the City of Brotherly Love now with a Beantown Boy chiming in.

Monday, October 24, 2005

The Smoking PUCK...EXTREME EXTRA!!!

October 24, 2005
by Rev. Sully

Shootout in the Blogger Corral
aka Tie "Fighters" at Six O'Clock


Recently The Smoking PUCK has been picked up by PhillyKeith Dot Com's Hockey section, a Philiadelphia Phan Site. Readers of the PUCK know that I get along with Flyers fans 78 games in a season. PhillyKeith posted an inquiry for NHL writers on Craigslist which Boston Sports Massacre's Brian forwarded to me. I responded and have been enjoying home-brewed hockey talk there since plus having the PUCK printed "in" Philly. PhillyKeith Dot Com is advertised as the "Extreme Sports Writer Back with his own Site". So Check out our Brothers in the city of Brotherly Love...go Flyers except when they play the Black & Gold of Beantown. Let's hear it for Hockey fans everywhere speaking their minds on the Internet.

One poster, Frank Ingiosi who writes "Putting On The Foil" is a hockey purist and put up his dukes to defend the old school...and the acceptance of Shootouts to resolve regular season NHL Games. Come to PhillyKeith and check out Frank's writings on Hockey, on why Philly Fans should forgive Eric Lindros (he had me on that one) and "Putting on the Foil"s Atlantic Division predictions. It's good stuff. Thanks.


Link to PhillyKeith Posting of the Smoking Puck, Spetember 29, 2005 and its comments.

Just the Facts here though...

At 4:20 PM, fingiosi said...

Aww, good Reverend. While I highly respect your opinion as well as your knowledge of the game, I must disagree.

The shootout is a gimick that gives hockey purists heart palpitations. While I can accept change to our beloved game this is a bit much. I mean, what's next, a two point goal?

-Frank

At 6:59 AM, Rev Sully said...

Hiya Frank,

Actually the two-point goal was scrapped in favor of having the mascots skate the Shootout in next year's All Star Game.

I had no problem with the "Old NHL" until I realized...the "Old NHL" was the problem. In the 4 games to this day, hockey...or at least the 4 Bruins games I've watched has been so opened up. Passing, one-timers, LOTS of Power Play opportunities. The Tag Up Offsides and No Two Line Offsides is working. The Bruins home opener took 2h 15m to play. The first whistle was 4 minutes into the 1st period...but I digress...we're talking Shootouts here.

The Shootout I haven't seen yet on the television or in person. Olympic hockey have had shootouts to decide Medal games. I hope that a shootout will never decide the Cup but I have no problems with the Regular Season shootout for one simple reason; I hate ties. Hate 'em. Hate 'em as much as I hate the NYR. Hate 'em like a 5 year old hates broccoli. The team still gets the Standings point for bringing the game into OT. OTL in the Standings is just the old "T" in "W-L-T". But win or lose, the shootout is an excellent solution for tied games.

People wanted it. Not all obviously but enough that this idea has been kicking around for over the past 10 years. It is a solution to the "Tie" Problem and it is a little thrilling too. The two Ottawa/Toronto games decided the Battle of Ontario with Shootouts in both meetings this young season (with the Sens taking both). Hey...I love penalty shots. It doesn't happen often, only when it's extremely warrented does the Ref point to center ice. The Shootout brings fun to the ice and also anticipation to the Overtime period with something new...resolution. Say it with me...no more ties, no more ties, no more ties!!!

'Namaste,
Rev. Sully

Friday, October 21, 2005

I just got a "Hello" in the email from Porter. I almost had a freakin' heart attack, as I honestly though she'd completely fallen off the face of the earth never to be heard from again.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

"I might have my own level of discomfort going to games, putting up with those raucous fans although that’s something I must come to terms with but I digress..."

Funny thing is Sully...not too long ago we were those very fans.



Molly muck muck...molly molly muck muck....