Saturday, November 28, 2009

Playmobil Zombie Pirates? Of Course!

I've never really liked pirates. Between the current (well, semi-current) obsession with Disney's most boring ride turned into three, boring movies, it's really left a weird, Deppy taste in my mouth.

Naw, I'm being too harsh. Pirates are pretty cool. Swashbuckling and pillaging and being a badass are all things I can support. But obviously, anything will turn into a stomach-churning, boring mess when it's overtly used in all sorts of mediums ranging from cliche tattoos to really weird, Steven Tyler mixed with Cyndi Lauper-esque fashion statements. Plus, the "Pirates" movies weren't that bad. Granted, I've only seen the first one and almost fell asleep in the second one, but it really did seem to lose it's charm quick.

Oh, what was my point? Ah, right. I found some cool zombie-pirates!

I've always liked Playmobil toys. It's kind of a creepy statement to make, since I've only actually invested legitimate time with the things since my teen years. Although, I remember Jimmy had a castle when I was a youngster, maybe, that was Playmobil oriented, which had a few knights with reallyreally neat looking horses, but I've never actually been knee-deep in the stuff. I can't tell you the history or origins of the toy company, but what I can tell you is that they make figurines and vehicles and buildings ranging from the most insane, outerspace and otherworldly, to the most mundane, boring, "why was this made into a toy?" design. You can snag yourself a moon-scavaging playset, or the group of figurines and vehicles detailing the inner workings of the airport. You into dangerous, underwater sea adventures? Or what about taxi drivers or the gas station attendant set instead? It's this idea, that nothing is too mediocre or dull that keeps me coming back for more. And yeah, I actually own that Playmobil taxi, complete with taxi driver. It even comes with luggage! For the taxi's trunk! Gleeee!

This blog is, essentially, my diary. My shameful, shameful diary.

Overall, pretty nice. They come with an array of battle gear, skeletal clothing (or is that they are, in fact, nothing but bones? You decide!) and one has frighteningly orange hair. I like that. But to be honest, one of the main goals I've secretly harbored while perusing the aisles of the Toys R Us was to demand countdown satisfaction during Christmastime. That, and to not look like a pervert while speed walking through the little girl/Barbie/stroller section to get to the good stuff. This good stuff:

Countdown satisfaction! I've wanted this for a while now, maybe this year I'll pony up the dough. Basically, starting December 1st, for every day, you open up a secret compartment, filled with a tiny, token of Christmasy fun (in this case, it's a pinecone or a dirty raccoon) leading up to the grand finale on December 25th -- Santa Claus and all the woodland creatures celebrating the birth of potatos. The cover and general marketing idea makes you think you'll be riding down the religious route, but as soon as you notice the basket of 'taters they're huddled around, you'll be able to rest easy, you heathens. Trust me.

Wanting this is quite the testament to my growing immaturity and willingness to easily throw away twenty bucks, since I'm destined to stare at the box lovingly, open it lovingly and then, quite lovingly, throw it in the hallway closet.

Merry X-Mas!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Them Crooked Vultures? Them Crooked Vultures!

This is a rad album.

It features Josh Homme of QOTSA, Dave Grohl of Foovana, and John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin. Musically, I'm sure you can get away with anything if you mention that ya got the bassist of Led Zep on your album. You probably don't even need a band at that point. Just casually insinuate that you're merely friends with the guy and you get away with selling t-shirts and stylized keychains.

Actually, I don't even like Led Zeppelin that much, so it doesn't do too much for me knowing that JPJ is slappin' duh bass. Granted, I've never given them a huge chance, but it always seemed that the kids in high school who listened to Led Zep were the drama kids/stoner dorks. Everyone who thought they were the coolest shit by wearing oversized Doobie Brothers shirts, watched Monthy Python films and had an endless supply of those circular, John Lennon glasses. It was a bit of a turn off. But hey, to each their own. I'm still appreciative that the dude is on this record, though. With such a massive career in music, a fanatical fanbase and endless inspirations for thousands and thousands of's a solid plan to ensure that yeah, this is probably not gonna entirely suck.

Turns's pretty cool. I'm not going to sing it's praises atop a mountain, naked and demanding the musical truth be told, but I will listen to it. Occasionally. With fervor. It sounds kinda like you'd imagine -- Queens of the Stone Age smashed together with super-unmodern sounding-super-songs, like Cream/Clapton or anything you might hear a bunch of dudes playing in their garage after realizing that, yes, guitar solos should be long and technical! It's too much of a jam band to be rockin', yet too rockin' to be outright dismissed. I can get into it, if and when I'm in a slow, groovy mood, or when I totally wanna listen to Homme's pretty, falsetto voice. You're like an angel, Josh. Grohl's drumming seems a bit restrained, never blasting into heartstopping, mindblowing territory, though. Nothing to be ashamed of, though. Dave Grohl, you've still got my vote.

The bass is smooth, too. It's hard to really describe bass playing. Besides, "sounds like the guy from Rancid" or "Flea," you're left in the dark. This sounds...wet. There, a new and eerily gross way to describe a bass sound -- wet.

Overall, it's cool. It's deliciously funky. And if you ever saw them live, well, you'd be seeing a triple-threat of cool dudes. Most likely, none of which would talk, acknowledge or even see my existance as worthwhile enough to glance in my general direction.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Star Wars Toys! I Love it! YOU Love it!

I love Star Wars. It's a pretty fantastic disease I really don't mind carrying in my bloodstream. I won't go too far into why I love the films (I'll end up outright gushing about how Twi'leks are so really really awesome) but let's just say that every night I pleasure myself while wearing a Rebel fighter pilot helmet. Actually, let's not say that. In fact, let's forget I even typed that out.

I attribute it to being such a vast, intricate universe you can easily get lost in, like World of Warcraft, but less life-sucking and socially destructive. You've got yourself a rad storyline, face-slicing swords and a burning desire to collect, in action figure form, every character that made any sort of appearance in the films, whether it be a half an hour or a twelve second scene in the Mos Eisely Cantina. I can't deny that those scenes are my favorite (quick, character heavy monster fests) making any of your money going towards Lucasfilm all that more ridiculous. Do I really need to own a figure of the Rancor's sobbing, sweaty keeper? Yes. Yes, I do.

So I've been collecting and gathering and mindlessly hoarding this junk forever. I'd say it was a chemically lopsided obesession at first, but now more of a "casual fan" kinda thang. Casual fans still end up on the political stylings of Endor and how Boba Fett escaped the Sarlacc Pit to exact revenge on Han Solo, right?

Vintage figures. I'm literally wet right now.

Jimmy was lucky enough to be around when the 80's literally exploded with rad Star Wars toys. Over time, I've stolen them from him and have since claimed innocence. Awesome. When they re-released the films in theatres twenty years later, they also released the biggest wave of shit I've ever had the pleasure to be a part of. Davey and I spent our lives, our lifeblood making the rounds at Toys R Us searching for all the new, released toys to accompany the newly, updated films. All the added scenes in the movies kinda sucked, but I could seriously live with a non-original Lando update. All Lando is good Lando. It was as if I was finally living in a time where being a kid was awesome and toy aisles were littered with droids and Death Stars. I can't help myself, I'm gushing!

So I guess they have these new figures out. I've been out of the "game" for years now, but I couldn't help myself with this one. I've kicked the habit for as long as I could, but I just HAD to nerd out with my cock out. Under the "Legacy" collection title, there's a whole new gang of familiar faces. Kinda doesn't make sense, but you know what I mean. I assume these are the fan favorites, the best of the best, the crew of characters that absolutely need their 487th upgrade. Expect the usual Jawa, Ewok and IG-88, 'cause those guys are classically bomb, we all know this. These are my favorite finds of the latest, and definitely not last of the newest wave of rehashed fun. 'Cause that's what's it all about, people. FUN. And intergalactic robots. Yes!

Nien Nunb. Ohhh, you. You're the best. You're my favorite! And this is a cool figure, featuring the fish-faced bastard in his B-wing pilot gear, pre-"I'm awesome and I'm gonna help fly the Falcon later in the film." He's looking cool, he's looking slimy and he's looking fun. I TOLD YOU THAT'S WHAT IT'S ALL ABOUT.

This is Rum Sleg. Don't know who that is? Yeah, me neither. The back info tells us that he's a bounty hunter (I like, I like) that was at the Podraces that Anakin Skywalker competed in (I don't like, I don't like) Any scene with that little turd still leaves a bad taste in my mouth, so I've kinda let that entire film slip from my mindscape. As long as "Empire" still exists, I'll play dumb and won't complain.

But yeah, so far I'm pretty certain that Rum Sleg is awesome. He's got a few guns, a mysterious helmet and an outfit that screams "post-apocalyspe wasteland," a style I'm regularly wishing to have introduced to my wardrobe. I want to be Road Warrior, minus all the jew-hating and whatnot.

Major Panno is fantastic, and I can't pretend I immedietly knew this thing existed in the Star Wars universe. Apparently, he's a Dressellian who helped run a shield generator strike on Endor to take down the Death Star. From the picture on the back, yeah, it's legit...he had some screen time. I feel that his screen time was a a quick, camera-pan-to-the-left, but it's cool, I still like him. He looks like a turtle and has a cloth cape. Hell, I love him.

Alright, so I guess that's about it. I would have bought them all (there was a Yoda and a Stormtrooper and a Han Solo in Stormtrooper garb that I really wanted) but I need to eat. Unless...Star Wars toys...are edible?

Get on it, George!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Marvel in My Pocket!

Every now and then, I tell myself I won't buy any more useless nonsense. I go through the motions of personally vowing to stop obsessing over any more ridiculous crap that'll just end up in the back of the closet, between the dusty Sega Dreamcast and broken AT-AT. You see, I'm a collector. But unlike some, there's no method to my madness, and I've never been one to keep to a specific route of hoarding. I like amassing large amounts of material possessions, whether it be monster cups from 7-11 from 1983, or miniature, porcelein Buddha statues (cherubic, bubbly faces is a personal weakness) I read novelty item catalogs for fun, and have been known to fawn over and create Amazon wishlists, just for kicks on a Saturday night. But one of the things I like to make sure I have enough of to last a few world wars is comic book related stuff. You can call me a fan of graphic novels, or even a bigger fan of cluttering up my desk with X-Men memorabilia, it's all the same to me. Basically, I have enough Marvel junk littering my place to even make Stan Lee uneasy. And today...I make my presence and natural existance uneasy...some more!

Ya know, I've been handing over my money to Marvel Comics for years, but this time it's personal. This time they're just daring me to throw financial caution to the wind, crack open the wallet and go to town.

Ooo boy...Handful of Heroes!

A fun mixture of the M.U.S.C.L.E. and Monster in My Pocket toy lines, you've got these bad bitches. I promise I won't make a joke about having a "handful of hero," 'cause I'm sure you're already halfway there. But you're offered a grip of superheroes (ha!) all under an inch tall and brightly colored (ha ha!) I'd be lying if I said I wasn't attracted to the zany colors and general "kapow!" quality. You're just kinda drawn to it. They're like tiny, intricate pieces of candy (that clear orange looks delicous) shaped specifically for my weird interests. I'd be down to chew on some Archangel.

When I first saw them in the store, I thought there was no way I'd fall for it. Toy lines like this are created and pre-destined to ruin any kid with any determination to complete what they started. The box demands you collect all 120 figures, and if I was a young pup, I wouldn't settle for anything less. Once you got caught up in the madness, there was no way out. You go big or you go home. And at seven bucks a pop, apparently, you go broke, too. Blarg.

But hot damn, I really and truly am a fan of eerie, obsessive-compulsive style collecting. It gives me something to be on the lookout for, like I'm on the hunt for a cancer-curing Spiderman no taller than a quarter. Maybe he'll grant wishes, too, I dunno. But being an adult with absolutely no time or money to spare on miniature Thors and Hulks, I had to be damned with this overpriced, overpowering bullshit and reluctantly pass on it, one-hundred-and-ten-percent without exceptions.

So I got three packs. Kill me now.

I feel if I was a little bit younger, Pokemon would have destroyed me. I'm not saying that buying tiny, choke-worthy comic book characters is somehow more of a respectable vice, but at least it ain't animal-plum hybrids and electrical, yellow cats. Seriously, I just made Pokemon sound awesome right there.

I snagged a few Hulks, a lot of Nick Furys, a Metamorpho (neat!) and possibly a Skrull. All I care about is that he has a sweet sword and is painted demon-black, so yes, my fave.

Naturally, it comes with a checklist detailing all the way cooler figures you didn't get, but it did at least mention that there's only forty figures to collect, painted in three colors each. So that narrows the playing field down a bit. I can sleep well tonight.

Overall, I'm into it. It's a fun throwback to sillier days where toys demanded some imagination and bartering skills. I can't say I'm gonna continue to to go apeshit on this, but I had my fill for one lazy, Sunday afternoon. I really like that Metamorpho, though. Just saying it out loud feels good and right. Metamorpho. Ahhh yes.

Alright, have fun!

The colors, duke! The COLORS!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

"They Call Us Death."

I gotta blog about this. I really do.

This is our new album cover for our new album, "They Call Us Death."

Since we can't just straight up sell our goods without an exclusive, one-time-only pre-order giveaway, we're offering you a...well, a one-time-only pre-order giveaway! C'mon, you saw that one coming. Ha!

These are our "3 Portraits of Evil!" As ya can tell, they'll feature each member of the band on postcard sized cardstock, and will be the ONE AND ONLY time they'll be available to the general public. The private public, well, that's a whole different story.
Check 'em out on our site at!

Jimmy Calabrese as Crash, from the "Really Dead!" films!

Davey Calabrese as Davey Calabrese, the teenaged werewolf who, by the power of moonlight, transforms into a reverse!

And I, Bobby Calabrese, as a "Killer Klown meets The Joker," based off the film critics call, "Nonexistant," and "Made up for this blog!" I introduce to you..."Bobby Vamps From Bobby Space!"

Check out the dude who did the art, he's awesome!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Easley's Costume Shop. In Other Words: Fuck You, Spirit Halloween Stores.

I really need to squeeze this blog in before it's too late. Clearly, I've been milking the Halloween cow for the last month, hell-bent on filling up this blog as quickly as possible. It's an easy task when the local pharmacy is exploding with laughing witch dolls and Halloween themed Reese's Peanut Butter cups, always giving me something to write about. 'Cause writing about H-ween themed candy is one of my "things." So it's been a good month. I'll miss it. I'll give it my damndest to keep this rock and roll train on track, without the aid of blog material every which way I turn, but no promises. Don't cry for me, Argentina.

So the day after Halloween, I've got one last blog I can file under the Halloween unbrella. Did that even make sense?

I really wanted to somehow incorporate Spirit Halloween stores into my blog realm before the season was dead and gone, but it never quite worked out that way. Between writing a full length article on it and only having close to two and a half pictures to accompany it (my camera phone died during the trek) it just never panned out. It essentially turned out to be an ode to my love/hate relationship with the place, teetering on madness and money loss. But the blog is on the backburner, and it really does suck to just let it disappear into the abyss of December, so maybe I'll post it online one of these days. I'll use my weak Paintshop skills and extensive, Google Image searches to fill in the blanks. But for now, we go a little more local with the costume shops and bins of rubbery body parts:

Easley's Fun Shop! A fantastic voyage into dollar store magic tricks and imagining that this is the store Pee-Wee shops at for X-Ray glasses and massive, oversized heads. Easley's caters to those looking to rent a costume, those who really need a bleeding-face-mouth mask and those who really want guts on a stick. Hey, I don't judge!

Basically, it's a ma and pop store that's open year round, with goodies and treats and stage make-up and all sorts of fun stuff you won't find anywhere else. It's like Spirit, if Spirit wasn't secretly a Wal-Mart that had 90 percent of their store dedicated to selling you clown crap. No one likes the clown crap. God, I hate the clown crap.

During the time I went, it was a week before the big day, so it was pretty packed with last-minute shoppers and the one group of people that just have to try on every hat the store owns. As I perused the asiles, I quickly realized I needed to buy something. The place was picked over pretty badly, but that didn't stop my quest to spend. I'm really into masks, or at least displaying masks all around my place, like a weird, creepy Jeffrey Dahmer-esque scenario. So far, this year has been pretty bland when it comes to masks, probably because I hate spending more than twenty bucks, and everything is way over sixty. Oh well, I still had my hopes set high that I'd finally finally FINALLY get myself a gorilla mask. Yeah, I really want a mask of a gorilla. The Planet of the Apes and comic book lover come out in full force with that one. It's kinda the "it" mask for Halloween, too. Like a viking helmet, pilot hat or 50's football jersey, it's the ideal "80's party outfit" you'd see in any of the decade's films. I'm pretty sure at least seventy percent of all 80's, teen comedies had a guy in a viking helmet somewhere in the film. Either hanging out in the background or spiking the punch while kicking a nerd in the nuts. Think about it. Just think about it.

Anyways, I was in the animal section (furry jokes, anyone?) and I got a goat head. Oh, man, now that sounded bad.

It's really cool, or at least semi-cool. Made of a hard plastic, it's pretty rad for under ten bucks. I've always wanted something like this, where it easily crosses over into "Rosemary's Baby" territory, giving me another reason to someday slap this on my face and dance in the woods naked. Probably to Duran-Duran. That's some Goddamn dancey music right there!

It's hard to tell if it's evil enough for my evil tastes, but I figure I can douse it in blood, hang it on the wall and perform my Satanic rituals without the fear of owning a non-evil goat head mask. It's the little things in life, ya know?

Oh, and one more thing! I didn't wanna overload myself with too much chocolatey treats this month, so I only allowed myself to put my body into a sugar coma with the best of the best. Twizzlers and Whoppers during "Nightmare on Elm Street" marathons aside, I found these:

I don't really like Dots. The fact that "Dots" makes me think of the tiny, button like candy that comes glued to a strip of paper (which is a candy I'm not sure I can get behind) and the time spent picking this fruit-jubilee-crap outta your teeth, it makes for a really shitty choice of candy. I'm more of a Sour Skittles man, with a heathly supply of soursploding Warheads. Anything that causes pain when I eat it, really. Dots are like, the blandest candy I can think of. Even Necco Wafers have a more extensive, reformed taste than Dots, and they're made of fruity chalk. But Dots represented to look like ghosts? YES. The box kinda promises that each, individual Dot is painted to look like a floating entity, which would be cool 'cause eating a ghost is one of my top priorities, but that's not quite the case. Pretty bland in ghosty features, you're left with a few blobs of the most wonderful colored candy I've ever seen:

Such a magnificent hue! It's like ectoplasm mixed with jellyfish. You get the impression that they're gonna glow, and in fact, I gleefully made sure to see if they did. When I realized I might be eating something that fucking glowed, I started questioning my eating habits.

Oh, and they taste pretty good, too. Happy November 1st!