Efficiency, sarcasm, and natty fur!

This monkey and this robot once had a system: three blogs for three subjects. But it was complicated and vague and usually ended in feces throwing. So we have combined all three into a melange of media reviews and links and excessive blather, so as to reduce the burden on your short attention span.

In the right column, Monkey + Robot have compiled for you a compendium of sassy, savvy and in the know media reviews and tidbits, for your time-wasting pleasure. And lest you poke at us with sticks or cut off our power supply, the reviews are now selectable through those perky drop-down menus. Monkey + Robot Film and TV reviews, Wrongrobot's Comic Stash, and more.

Grab a chunk of melon and some Demoral, because in the left column, we have accumulated for you every snappy link we found amusing, entertaining, provocatively witty, or frankly, just colorful, with easy to understand small words so monkeybites can follow along. Such is Robotic Root!

Entertainment Media Ratings System:

Wrongrobot's Robot Rating: 1-10 Clicks, more indicating a happier robot!

Monkeybites' Monkey Rating: 1-10 Ooks! More indicating a mouthful of rotting simian teeth and lips curled in monkey pleasure!

IronLung's Robot Rating: 1-10 Clanks! More indicating a red-eyed, slack-jawed, blissed-out, ride-pimped dizzy droid! [this is good]

Vicbot's Robot Rating: 1-10 Whirrs! More indicating data that computes well with others.

WWW http://monkey-plus-robot-reviews.blogspot.com
Wrongrobot's Fantasy Film Casting:
Casting Batman: Year One
Casting The Losers
Casting Richard Zach's Pirate Hunter


Film Reviews [M+R Review Rating, out of 10 Possible Clicks, or Clanks, or Ooks]

Adventures of Baron Munchausen: 8 Clicks
Aliens Vs. Predator: 1 Clank
Bad Santa: 9 Clicks
Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever: 2 Clicks
Bend it Like Beckham: 8 Clicks
Bourne Supremacy: 10 Clicks
Bowling for Columbine: 8 Clicks
Bubba Ho-Tep: 8 Clanks
Cirque du Soleil- Allegria [stage]: 10 Clicks
Cold Mountain: 7 Clicks
Cutthroat Island: 2 Clicks
Elf: 8 Clicks
Equilibrium: 6 Clicks
Escape From Alcatraz: 7 Clicks
Finding Nemo: 10 Clicks
Girl With a Pearl Earring: 7 Clicks
The Graduate [stage]: 7 Clicks
Hero: 7 Clanks
House of 1000 Corpses: 5 Clanks
How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days: 5 Clicks
Hudson Hawk: 6 Clanks
The Hulk: 7 Clicks
Identity: 3 Clicks
Igby Goes Down: 5 Clicks
Intolerable Cruelty: 6 Clicks
I, Robot [trailer commentary][IronLung]
I, Robot [trailer commentary][Wrongrobot]
Kill Bill Vol.1: 10 Clicks
Kill Bill Vol.2 [IronLung]: 9 Clanks
Kill Bill Vol.2 [Wrongrobot]: 10 Clicks
The Last Samurai: 8 Clicks
LotR: Return of the King: 7 Clicks
My Architect: 9 Clicks
Original Kings of Comedy: 7 Clicks
The Phantom: 1 Click
Pirates of the Caribbean: 9 Clicks
The Punisher: 5 Clanks
Secretary: 9 Clicks
Shanghai Knights: 4 Clicks
Spellbound: 7 Clicks
Spider-Man 2: 8 Clanks/ 8 Clicks
Starsky & Hutch: 8 Clicks
Star Trek- Nemesis: 6.5 Clicks
Terminator 3: 5 Clicks, 2 Ooks
The Thin Red Line: 7 Clicks
To Live and Die in LA: 10 Clicks
Troy: n/a
Van Helsing: 4 Clicks, 0 Clanks!
Whale Rider: 8 Clicks

Comic Film Adaptations News [Film and TV]:

Appleseed OAV 2004 6/18/04
Aeon Flux: 2/27/04
Akira Live-Action Film 9/29/04
Animated Batman 2004 9/2/04
Batman Begins: 2/12/04 2/19/04 2/24/04 3/02/04 3/03/04 3/04/04 3/08/04 3/9/04 3/17/04 3/19/04 3/31/04 TRDL Concept Illustration 4/3/04 4/5/04 4/12/04 TRDL Concept Illustration Part 2 4/12/04 4/21/04 4/22/04 4/23/04 4/23/04 4/29/04 5/4/04 Costume Critique 5/4/04 Script Excerpts 5/7/04 6/01/04 6/04/04 6/09/04 6/10/04 6/15/04 6/16/04 7/6/04 7/13/04 7/20/04 7/26/04 7/28/04 Trailer 7/29/04 7/31/04 8/2/04 8/3/04 8/4/04 8/5/04 8/8/04 8/10/04 8/12/04 8/17/04 8/20/04 8/24/04 8/30/04 10/19/04
Battle Angel Alita: 9/10/04
Black Widow 4/29/04
Blade 3: Trinity: 5/4/04 6/11/04
Catwoman: 2/18/04 5/21/04 Game Concept Art 5/21/04 6/11/04 Suckage! 7/29/04
Comic Adaptations 10/13/03
Constantine: 3/08/04 5/14/04
Dazzler?!? 7/7/04
Elektra: 2/19/04 3/29/04 4/23/04 5/14/04 4/29/04 5/4/04 6/10/04 6/18/04 7/1/04 7/2/04 7/6/04 7/29/04 9/20/04 10/13/04
Fantastic Four: 6/16/04 7/8/04 7/14/04 7/15/04 8/3/04 9/20/04
Ghost in the Shell 2: 9/18/04
Global Frequency: 6/15/04 7/16/04 8/17/04
Good Time For Comic Films! 5/14/04
Green Lantern?!?: 7/24/04 Koboshed 8/8/04
Hawaiian Dick: 4/21/04 Interview 4/22/04
He-Man: 10/11/04
Hellboy: 2/12/04 Interview: Del Toro 2/20/04
3/03/04 3/9/04 3/17/04 Personality Test 3/17/04 Figures Released 3/29/04 Toys Addendum 3/30/04 Choose the Next Figures! 4/21/04 Hellboy: An Introduction 3/30/04 Interview: Selma Blair 3/30/04
Interview: Spectral Motion 4/5/04 Caught On Film in '62! 4/21/04 Interview: Selma Blair, CafeFX 4/28/04 Hellboy Collaborator Medical Fund Auction! 5/4/04 DVDs 7/7/04 7/28/04 8/3/04 8/5/04 8/25/04 8/31/04 Hellboy 2: 3/29/04 4/8/04 6/03/04 8/27/04 9/1/04
Hulk 2? 5/4/04 9/7/04

Hulk Op-Ed 7/14/04
Iron Man: 3/03/04 4/23/04 6/10/04 6/28/04 9/14/04
8/2/04 8/10/04
Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD 9/8/04
Preacher FX 4/29/04
Sin City: 3/19/04 4/04/21 4/04/29 4/05/19 5/21/04 6/01/04 6/11/04 7/1/04 7/26/04 7/28/04 7/20/04 8/11/04 9/15/04
Spider-Man 2: 2/18/04 3/29/04
Spider-Man 3: 5/4/04 5/14/04 6/10/04 7/13/04 Spider-Man 2 Game Screenshots 6/8/04 Spider-Man 2 [trailer commentary]
Superman: 5/21/04 6/03/04 6/09/04 6/10/04 6/28/04 7/1/04 7/13/04 7/14/04 7/20/04 8/5/04 8/10/04 8/27/04 8/31/04 9/10/04 9/15/04 10/19/04 [2] 10/19/04
Transformers: 9/10/04
Wanted 3/03/04
Watchmen: 4/4/23 4/7/24 7/24/24 8/12/04 9/10/04
Wolverine: 10/13/04
X-Men 3: 7/20/04 5/4/04 6/18/04 7/7/04 7/8/04 7/14/04 7/15/04 7/20/04 8/27/04 Aborted Sentinel? 9/2/04 9/7/04 9/15/04

Film News, General:

A Scanner Darkly Film Adaptation
Akira: Kaneda's Bike in Production? 8/28/04
Aliens Vs. Predator: 6/2/04 Chess Set 5/26/04 6/8/04 Trailor 6/11/04 6/28/04 7/8/04 [trailer commentary] 8/5/04 8/8/04 7/15/04 8/12/04
Anchorman 7/13/04
Big Lebowski Day! 5/5/04
Bloodrayne 8/10/04
Bond? Who Bond? 8/3/04
Bourne Supremacy: 1/6/04 Trailer: 5/4/04 7/8/04
Cage Deserves Happiness 7/31/04
Clooney/ Tarantino in the News 10/15/03
Dodgeball 6/01/04
Domino 8/3/04
HEAT vs. R:HD: Dialog Analysis 10/22/03
Heat/ GTA III: Lawsuits Imitate Life 10/23/03
Incredibles 8/23/04
Jim White Documentary 3/23/04
Kill Bill 2 Poster 2/18/04
Kill Bill Interview: Uma Thurman 4/8/04
Kill Bill Vol. 3?! 4/12/04
The Life Aquatic 1/15/04
Matrix Explained? 8/31/04
National Treasure 8/4/04
Nowhere Man 7/26/04
Pierce is Bond No More 7/27/04
Sky Captain 7/15/04
Sky High 8/17/04
Soderberg Joins Che 4/5/04
Speed Racer: Vince Vaughn 6/25/04
Stealth 7/8/04
Summer 04 Films to Watch 4/22/04
Team America Puppet Porn 8/25/04
Transporter 2 6/16/04
Van Helsing: Van Helsing WHO? 3/16/04 Interview: ILM 5/5/04 Penny Arcade 5/18/04
Underworld 2 9/7/04
WB Kills ESC F/X 8/18/04
Will Smith Lexicon 5/18/04
Zatoichi: Blind Swordsman 6/25/04
No Mas James Bond
Miami Vice on the Big Screen

TV Reviews, and the M+R Review Rating, out of 10 Possible Clicks, or Clanks, or Ooks

24 Season 3: 10/29/03: 8 Whirrs 11/5/03: 6 Whirrs 2/08/04: 7 Whirrs 2/12/04: 8 Whirrs 2/18/04: 8 Whirrs 2/24/04: 9 Whirrs 4/06/04: 7 Whirrs 4/26/04: 6 Whirrs 5/03/04: 3 Whirrs 5/11/04: 9 Whirrs 5/18/04: 8 Whirrs Finale 7/8/04: 3 Whirrs
Apprentice: Robin and Carolyn 4/16/04
ATHF and Space Ghost Links 2/25/04
ATHF: Revenge of the Trees 10/13/03: 8 Clicks The Shaving 10/27/03: 7 Clicks Super Trivia 9/22/03: 8 Clicks Battlestar Galactica 1/13/04: 3 Clicks
Carnivale: 9/22/03: 10 Clicks 9/30/03: 9 Clicks
Christopher Columbus: Secrets From the Grave: 3 Clicks
CSI: 8/11/03: 1 Ook 9/26/03: 5 Clicks CSI: Miami: 7/30/03: 1 Ook 7/31/03: 6 Clicks 9/26/03: 7 Clicks
Deadwood 3/24/04: 8 Clicks
Dinner for Five: 9/26/03: 7 Clicks 9/30/03: 7 Clicks
Ed: 9/26/03: 3 Clicks Series Finale 2/12/04: 7 Clicks
Emmy Nominations 04 7/15/04: 7 Clicks
Enterprise 10/13/03: 6 Clicks
Everybody Loves Raymond 9/26/03: 6 Clicks
Friends 9/26/03: 7 Clicks
Grammys: Outkast's Andre 3000 2/9/04: 10 Clicks
Law and Order Family: 9/30/03: 8 Clicks
Law and Order: 10/13/03
Law and Order: CI: 1/12/04: 8 Clicks
Marvel Comics Guide to NYC: 10 Clicks
Method and Red: 9 Clicks
MI-5 10/28/03: 10 Clicks
Mix It Up 1/12/04: 8 Clicks
Mr. Show: What to Think 9/10/03: 10 Clicks
Penn & Teller's Bullshit: 9 Clanks
Reno 911!: 9 Clicks 9/7/03
Space Ghost C2C: Baffler Meal: 11 Clicks! Flipmode 2/25/04:20 Clicks Survivor 7 9/19/03: 8 Clicks
Survivor All-Stars: 2/12/04: 8 Clicks 2/13/04: 7 Clicks Tour de France 2003 8/4/03: 8 Clicks
Will & Grace 9/26/03: 7 Clicks

TV News

24/Law and Order/CSI "That Guy" Character Actor Tracker
24: Comic Adaption 3/25/04 Season 4 Casting 8/9/04
Amazing Screw-On Head Cartoon 4/8/04
Cigarette Smoking Man Action Figure 5/26/04
CSI: CSI in Comedy Culture 6/24/04 CSI's Peterson 2/18/04 Sick outs Everywhere 7/27/04
CSI: Miami Drinking Game 2/27/04 No Mas Rory Cochrane 8/9/04
CSI:NY: 3/8/04 3/16/04 Drawn Together 8/20/04
HDTV ScreenCap Archive 8/25/04
Jessica Simpson 10/21/03
Mastershake Speaks 9/7/04
Nike's Lance Commercial: Magnet 8/18/04
Law and Order: Trial by Jury Casting 6/04/04
NBC Hijacks TiVo 1/15/04
Simpsons' Shearer Balks 8/12/04
Survivor All-Stars Cast 1/12/04
Survivor 9 8/18/04
Robbery: Homicide Division Music 9/30/03

French Connection Made for TV


Wrongrobot's Comics Stash- Comics and Sequential Art Reviews

Comic Reviews, and the M+R Review Rating, out of 10 Possible Clicks, or Clanks, or Ooks

Comics Reviews Intro
100 Bullets: 48: 7 Clicks
52, 53: 8 Clicks
9-11, Artists Respond Collections
Alias: 24-25: 10 Clicks 26-27: 10 Clicks 28: 9 Clicks
Astonishing X-Men: 2: 8 Clicks 3,4: 9,10 Clicks
Avengers: 500: 8 Clicks 502: 7 Clicks
Batgirl Year One TPB: 10 Clicks
Batman: 620: 5 Clicks 621: 7 Clicks
Batman: Long Halloween: 7 Clanks
Bloodstream 1: 1 Click
BPRD One Shots: 9/7 Clicks
Cla$$War: 4: 8 Clicks 5: 10 Clicks
Daredevil: 50-52: 9/3/5 Clicks 54: 4 Clicks 56: 9 Clicks 57: 7 Clicks
65: 6 Clicks
Domino:Perfect Weapon: 8 Clicks
Exiles: 30-33: 6/4/4 Clicks 36-37: 3/6 Clicks
Ex Machina: 2, 3: 7 Clicks
Global Frequency 11: 10 Clicks
Gotham Central: 10-11: 9 Clicks 13: 9 Clicks 16-18: 9 Clicks
Hellhounds 1-3: 7 Clicks
Human Target: 4: 9 Clicks 5-6: 8 Clicks 7: 8 Clicks
12, 13: 9 Clicks
Iron Man: 73-75: 8 Clicks 76: 2 Clicks 77: 5 Clicks 86: 9 Clicks
JSA: 51-52: 7/8 Clicks 53: 8 Clicks 54: 4 Clicks 56-57: 7 Clicks 58: 3 Clicks
League of Extraordinary Gentlemen 2: 3 Clanks, 8 Clicks
The Losers: Ante Up TPB: 9 Clanks 6: 10 Clicks 10-11: 8/10 Clicks
16: 10 Clicks
New Invaders 0: 3 Clicks
New X-Men: 144-146: 5 Clicks 149: 3 Clicks 151-152: 2 Clicks 153: 3 Clicks
[Renamed X-Men] 159-162: 4 Clicks
Paradise X: A: 9 Clicks
Planetary: TPBs (1-12): 8 Clicks 16: 5 Clicks : 8 Clicks 18: 9 Clicks
Powers: 33: 8 Clicks 36: 9 Clicks 37: 10 Clicks V2, 1: 10 Clicks
2-4: 10 Clicks
Pulse: 5: 7 Clicks
Queen and Country: 20: 10 Clicks 21: 10 Clicks 25: 8 Clicks
The Ride 1: 9 Clicks
Secret War 1: 8 Clicks
Sleeper: 8: 10 Clicks 11: 10 Clicks 12: 10 Clicks Sleeper Season Two: 1: 10 Clicks
Supreme Power: 1-2: 10 Clicks 4: 10 Clicks 7: 10 Clicks 8: 9 Clicks 11: 8 Clicks
Tokyo Storm Warning TPB: 5 Clicks
Ultimates: 12: 10 Clicks 13: 10 Clicks
Ultimate Fantastic Four 1-2: 7 Clicks 3: 8 Clicks
Ultimate Nightmare: 1: 10 Clicks
2: 8 Clicks
Ultimate Six: 1: 10 Clicks 4: 10 Clicks 6: 9 Clicks Ultimate X-Men: 36-37: 2 Clicks
Ultra: 2: 9 Clicks
Uncanny X-Men: 429-431: 4 Clicks 433: 2 Clicks 437-441: 1 Click 444-445: 5 Clicks 446: 6 Clicks
Wanted 2: 10 Clicks
We3: 1: 10 Clicks
Wildcats 3.0: 13: 7 Clicks 16: 7 Clicks 18: 7 Clicks
X-Statix : 2: 4 Clicks 13-15: 6 Clicks 18: 4 Clicks 19: 3 Clicks

Friends of Robot: Artists:

FoR: 36Oh.net FofR: Enrico Casarosa
FoR: Terra Major's Horns of Hattin
FoR: Losstarot
FoR: Prometheus
FoR: Studio Kosen

Comic News:

Check the Film News section for updates on comic-related film adaptations! 100 Bullets FPS Game 4/2/04
Ale Garza on Batgirl 8/5/04
Amazing Screw-On Head Cartoon 4/8/04
Apparat Line: Warren Ellis 8/25/04
The Atomic Revolution Comic 3/23/04
Authority: Nguyen Interview 5/14/04
Authority OGN 7/20/04
Avengers 500 Preview 7/1/04
Brent Anderson on Pulse, Astro City 3/25/04
Batman Begins Costume Illustration [Wrongrobot]4/3/04
Batman: War on Crime 8/31/04
Bullseye Origin Series 6/28/04
Comics For Intellectuals 9/1/04
Decompression and Pacing 9/23/03
Dillon on Bullseye 9/7/04
Doc Frankenstein by Burlyman 9/2/04
Doc Ock Year One 6/16/04
Earth's Mightiest Mini 9/3/04
Ellis and Granov on Iron Man 5/25/04
Ellis Stream-a-Blog: Iron Man 7/31/04
Ellis Stream-a-Blog: Explodo 8/2/04
Ellis Stream-a-Blog: Bad Kids 8/27/04
Fox Sued over LoEG Script 9/26/03
Hawaiian Dick Bk 2 8/23/04
Hack/Slash book 2 6/18/04
Hal Jordon and Copyrights 8/20/04
Hellboy: An Introduction 3/30/04
IDW's 24 Comic 3/25/04
Iron Man Facelift 9/12/03
Iron Man 87 Outtakes 8/27/04
Joss Whedon Interview: Astonishing X-Men 8/10/04
JSA vs. JSA 8/12/04
League of Extraordinary Gentlemen 3 6/1/04
Marvel Vs. DC 8/31/04
Masamune Shirow 10/15/03
Micro-Heros Animated GIFs 4/6/04
Morrison on JLA: Hyperclan and Superman 6/1/04
Morrison's WE3 9/1/04
New Avengers 8/18/04
Nguyen Confirmed on Authority Vol.3 5/14/04
Nouvelle Manga Manifesto 6/11/03
Ocean 8/9/04
Orson Welles as Batman? 9/26/03
Phoenix Mini-Series 8/20/04
Poorly Drawn Animals 8/2/04
Remains: Niles/Dwyer Interview 3/12/04
Scurvy Dog: Yount Interview 1/15/04
SD Comicon Visual Oddities 7/31/04
Space Ghost 7/31/04
Spandex vs Leather 4/6/04
Steven Grant on 'Literature of Ethics'
The Losers: Diggle/Jock Interview 3/11/04
The Picture of Everything 1/15/04
The Question: Rick Veitch 9/1/04
The Question: Tommy Lee Edwards 9/2/04
Teddy Roosevelt From Mars 8/20/04
Tom Coker: Batman in Monolith 8/30/04
Tony Harris Pages from new Iron Man Arc
Ultimates: Bryan Hitch Interview 9/12/03
Ultra 8/18/04
Watchmen Remembered 8/12/04
WizardWorld LA Promo Art 3/22/04
WonderCon 2004 Buzz 8/13/04
WonderCon 2004 Buzz 2 8/17/04
WonderCon 2004 Dance-Off 8/18/04
Worlds Finest Film 7/26/04
World's Finest Interview 8/4/04
Young Avengers 8/20/04
Identity Crisis Covers
Honey Moon, The Ride, Rex Steele, Shirow, Megacity909
Comic Preview: Intimates, Iron Man
TSR Illustrator Terminally ill
Twinkie Comics, Avengers Dissembled Toy-style
Interview: Mark Millar of Ultimates
Interview: Cliff Chiang of Human Target
Star Trek Manga Anthology from Tokyopop
Pop Mahn to TokyoPop
Granov Iron Man Preview Pages
Image Comics Moves to Berkeley

Batman Begins: A Treatise on Cowls, In Two Parts: UPDATED

Wrongrobot and IronLung have conspired to bring you an over-thought critique of the few low-light, low-res, odd-angled images of then new Batsuit. Before more images are released that completely change the picture of what we can expect, here we go:

IronLung: Here's what I gotta say about the Batman shot from EW ... it was a little too dark to see it completely, but I got a good idea of it nonetheless. Firstly, the staging. Bats sitting on a fire escape, crouched down low, scanning the streets below, is totally true to form, indicative of a man rather than a superhuman. It lends itself to all the things Batman is -- vigilante, human, warrior. It is a truly beautifully staged shot. Secondly, the actor. Christian Bale kicks ass, period. Hopefully, we'll see Bruce Wayne running down a hallway, blood-spattered, wearing nothing but tennis shoes, carrying a chainsaw. american BAT-psycho. Word. Thirdly, the suit. Ok, this is where i've got some points of contention.

Wrongrobot: In all fairness, that first shot released in EW doesn't do the suit justice, I don't think. While I agree the staging of that shot is good stuff in concept, the late, similar image on the Batman Begins site offers a similar pose, but with the all-important cape billowing around him. This is the one I prefer. As far as this initial photo, I agree the costume details jarred me. And the crouch is awkward here, like he's ssquatting, more than coruching down. It looks very primal, which i suppose ain't bad. But there's nothing primal about rubber. Latex, on the other hand...

Bale has been, in my mind, no doubt the ideal casting choice for the character in both of his guises, and I fuly expect wonderful things to come from it.

I have to mention this early, so you remember to check for the link at the bottom of this post. Sandy Collora and Collora Studios created a short film based on the Batman mythos that was released to Comicon attendees last year, that almost perfectly captured the look of Batman: Year One into a film vision. Clark Bartram as Batman has the right general build and flexibility, and the whole thing is shot in such a way that the admittedly retro-suit comes off damn cool. The ears are long and the gloves aren't leathery enough, but otherwise it feels like the best fit to-date. Catch the film once you've read our little chit chat here. It's BY1 heaven...

IronLung: Cowl -- The ears are too big, though in comparison to the freakish tuning fork helmet that Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer and George Clooney wore, it's much better.

Wrongrobot: They ARE coming down in scale, which is important. I agree completely, however, that having spikey ears at all is too muchof a link to the previous films, and the 90's over-the-top stylistic Batsuit I sort of despised. Granted, Gil Kane's original design sported a very tall, pointed set of ears, so it's not totally inconsistent with the original costume. But the Batman Year One [BY1] design sported smaller, swept back ears that were symbolic without being literal. No surprise that I prefer anything BY1, but anyway.

IronLung: The face of the cowl is a little too sculpted for my liking, I guess. I'm not suggesting an Adam West-like felt facemask, but c'mon, it's a direct pickup from the other movies!

Wrongrobot: Yeah, the thing there is that i think they have a tendency to fear the mask on film. You look at the original Green Hornet and stuff like that, even the old Batman show, and the masks obscured the facial expressions of the actors. I can understand this as an issue. While I don't think there really should BE any expression from within the mask, preferring a dark, washed out silhouette with perhaps a grimace or scowl the only indication of a man within, from a film perspective I can see the need for more visual cues to the facial definition that might be picked up from spot lighting. Another option would have been to create physical layers to the mask in an interesting way, as was done for the character Midnighter, the revisionist-Batman designed for the Justice League parable, the Authority:

The Midnighter's mask is expressive in it's own way,and clearly a composite of armored panels (the more to headbut your face into a rotting pumpkin smear.) However, here the mask detailing is ridges and facets, like in previous movies. I would have liked to have seen the same principle applied to the stitching of the mask- reveal lines that indicate how it might be assembled, that just so happen to mirror brow and cheek lines.

IronLung: Cape -- super, SUPER cool. The collar most especially!

Wrongrobot: That was the biggest surprise of the images, to me. An indication that the cape is a separate component of the suit. It appears to have a retro-lapel thing going on, reminding me very much of the suit Mignola designed for the Gotham by Gaslight Elseworlds project several years ago (which a poster on one of the forums found in the MileHighComics database) as seen below:

IronLung: It immediately looks vintage (deco-ish), secure, and most importantly, homemade (Though, assumably, when you're a billionaire, you don't sit around a fucking Singer on saturday night making a cape.) Breaking from the collar and focusing on the actual cape, I think it's dope because it actually looks like fabric instead of the Visquine (sp?) thing that those other guys wore. Again -- homemade.

Wrongrobot: The shift in material texture to the cape is great, because it allows it to behave like a knitted fabric. Very interesting. I was picturing leather or banded strips of panelized material running vertically, that could be rigidized electronically into a glider. Perhaps this obvious textural key here suggests the function of the cape.

IronLung: Suit torso -- yes, it's sculpted a little more than I'd like, but I gotta say, it's working for me right now. At least it doesn't have nipples, arm veins, and lat musculature that doesn't exist in nature. It also looks like you can actually move in it (Remember in the old movies how Batman looked like he was wearing a backbrace?) and I fully dig the batsymbol being a debossed element sculpted into the chest, though I would ask ... why is it not black in contrast to a gray suit?? I can't tell if they're both black or both gray, but they don't contrast and that sucks. Oh, well, at least there's no yellow.

Wrongrobot: One of the best details of the entire project is the adoption of a batsymbol taken from the old designs (which have been used in the comics in the last few years) and incorporated into the suit. Once again, the BY1 costume showed the large abstrat bat stitched in black over a gray field, and this gave the costume an excellent visual contrast: you'd see a triangular shaped segment of chest area from within the cape folds, then that would be interrupted by the broad symbol that would merge with the cape to form a reverse positive field of the body of the figure. I really like that detail. So here, I have to say, the monochrome and similarly textured suit and detailing worries me. It's like two stair-crouches forward, and one stair-crouch back. The suit itself DOES look paddedor armored without the awkward musculature carved into it like every other costumed hero on film. However, without that musculature forced into the gear to emulate the comics' stylistic look, the suit looks...puffy. PUFFY?! Now, I would have liked to have seen something different here. Something, oh, BY1-like, I suppose. Back in the day, someone offered the suggestion that the reason the Batsuit had a yellow symbol on the chest was to focus enemy small arms fire at the one armored area of the figure- the Kevlar vest under the suit. I always liked that as an idea behind ANY batsymbol. I also liked the idea that while it would be difficult for anyone to be particularly agile in a vest, it makes a lot more sense than a fully armored suit. Especially one without joints. There are scores of armor designs throughout history that utilize clever jointing of lighter armors to strike a balnce between agility and protection (go rent Last Samurai for some good examples) and unfortunately, i fear here that they might be keeping the bulletproof thing with Batman's screen persona. I prefer my Batman vulnerable. It adds to the suspense of his combat: how to keep in the fray without being shot up by those wild strafing rounds of panicked thugs...which is the secondary motivation in my mind for the large cape (to obscure the figure and give the impression of enveloping monstrous form, the first motivation being intimidation.)

IronLung: Boots/Gloves -- I'm up in the air about this. I can't really see the boots, though what I can make out looks really realistic. The boots look like really worn, big, simple, leather boots. I can get behind this. The gloves, on the other hand (...haha...), start cool, with proper gloves and separate gauntlets, but the fin things on the gauntlets look weak. They're (how many times can a brother say it?) too sculpted. In batman:year one, the gauntlet fins were subtle little wing-things that added texture more than anything. Here, they're more like Predator war claws that the guy could climb a friggin teflon wall with. But hey, maybe that's the point.

Wrongrobot: What bothers me most here is the shiny armored look to the gloves. They look like metal gauntlets with a wierd sheen to them. The BY1 costume had simple, rugged leather gloves that flared a bit at the ends, and the fins were, as IronLung mentioned, expressive rather than literal. These look like they are designed to be a combat weapon. And if that were true, then they're pointing the wrong way. unless Wayne developed a new sparring technique where all strikes are backwards, like reverse-shark-scaling. I don't know what's going on here at all. The most important thing I took away from Mazuchelli's art on BY1 was the idea of leather gloves and gear having those thick leather seams. I draw them on everyone now. And here, these gloves are sort of creeping me out, reminding me of the cheaper end of Kevlar motorcycle gloves. Hard to ride in those, let alone bust heads in them. The boots, however, I concur, look more like combat boots, which is very necessary.

IronLung: In another picture that i saw on the Batman Begins website, I think I may be seeing a (gulp) yellow utility belt. I'm holding out that this is not the case.

Wrongrobot: Yup. See the saturated close-up I did below.

Disturbing. If the old yellow batsymbol was designed to draw weaponsfire towards the chest, what does a yellow utility belt do? Draw rounds into his abdomen at a pinch point that's impossible to armor without sacrificing mobility? Hello, painful, gory, fatal belly wound! I fear we would be seeing Bat-intestines strung around Bat-Gothic-building elements were this so. Not good. I've read that ScottEvest are designing the belt, and since they've got nothing up on their sight in termsof images, there's a slim chance this was a placeholder for another design later on. If they wanted it to visually contrast, the could have gone with a military-gray.

Iron Lung: Well, that's what I have to say about that. Sure, there's some stuff on it that I don't like, but whatever. It's a million times better than the old suits, and Christian Bale has a million times better bat-posture than the other guys (probably cause he can actually move in this suit!.)

Wrongrobot: It's a definite step in the right direction, and I hope within the context of Nolan's film, kept to the shadows and well-shot from interesting angles, the suit will look as functional as it supposedly was designed to be. Now, from what i hear from those that read the script that's floating out there (and this robot will NOT) there's lots to wow us coming around the bend, and that SmackMyBitchUp Batmobile is going to steal the film from these fine actors. So articulators remain crossed. Overall, I give the suit, from these early photos, a 5 in the EW spread, and a 7 on the website...

IronLung: Do you give clanks for this kind of stuff? I'd have to say 6 clanks. Better than bad, but far from perfect.

So, now: Batman Dead End... you have to see this short:

Batman: Dead End [short film]

Here are some teaser images:


IronLung: %#H&!@##%^!! Why was I not warned that 'Dead End' was a cheesefest BEFORE I downloaded the 40MB file??
I'm sitting there having the time of my life for the first minute. When they showed him land on the ground after jumping down from a building. Whoomp! DOPE!! Then they have his cape spread out all around him and he stands up and it slides inwards, implying that he is effortlessly rising, maybe even levitating. DOPE!! The joker with the brassknuckles. DOPE!! And then ... it tanked.

Now, I love AVP, I've told you this. I can't wait for the movie. But, um, Batman versus... Aliens and Predators? I'm insulted. (Not by you -- by the filmmakers.) Though I will say I think it was brilliantly filmed and the treatment of the Batman was perfect.

Wrongrobot: Click!

IronLung: Yeah, and while you're at it, and note that if an alien were shot in the head while it was over Batman's face, our favorite billionaire/vigilante would be reduced to a smouldering mound of rubber and brains.

Wrongrobot: Maybe that's what the cowl ridges are for: armored acid rivulets...

So says IronLung! and Wrongrobot

self is: wrongrobot #

TV Review: 24 04/27/04

Vicbot's back with yet another randy, wrong review of 24:

8am - 9am

"If there ever was a worst case scenario, this is it." But of course, this is 24, so we know it has to still get worse. There are now more infected people in the city, and neighborhoods are starting to be quarantined. Tony decides to tell everyone that they should be working hard, just in case they haven't already.

Palmer is told that CTU has captured Saunder's daughter and that they may be able to use her to get to Saunders. With all his presidential decision-making powers, he decides to wait to hand over the list to Sunders to give Jack time to come up with another plot twist. Jane Saunders finally calms down enough for Jack to get her all distraught again, so he tries to convince her to help by showing his photo album of Saunders' life to-date.
It starts out all nice with his buddy pictures in Kosovo, "and then something happened to him..." Pictures with terrorists and bio-weapons specialists and mid-level blue-shirt project managers (oh, the horror). An audio recording of Saunders threatening the President. And another live web feed from the hotel of pain (I must admit, with all the web-feed-ing going on this season, I'm quite surprised AOL or some equally insidious agent isn't sponsoring this along with Ford). When she can't take any more oozing bleeding pustules, she finally admits that Saunders contacted her 4 years ago to tell her he was alive, but that she shouldn't tell anyone.
And she has a phone number to be used when she gets drunk and needs a ride home.

Back at the terror loft, Saunders is informed by his British IT sidekick that CTU is trying to trace them through the dummy web address, but is having no success, due to his superior technical skills and fine accent.

Our favorite Secret Service Man Aaron marches an entourage into the President's office and informs him that they are evacuating him from the state. Oddly enough, no one seems to know that this was a rule. Aaron should be making up rules all over the place. Of course, with his winning smile, Palmer manages to talk him out of it (after all, the 3 remaining people in LA should know that their President stood by them), and the entourage looks dejected and quietly leaves after their 12 second walk on role. Tony and Jack inform Palmer that there is no way they can get to Saunders in the next 2 minutes, and he decides not to give into the new set of demands, forcing CTU to use Jane as a hostage via the magic phone number.

When no list arrives from Palmer, Saunders calls Henchman 37 and tells him to "release San Francisco." Fortunately for the home of our robot friend, the emergency cell phone rings and Henchman 37 is told to wait. Jack has managed to get Jane to call daddy while they try to trace the line. Of course, British IT sidekick has far more sophisticated technology on his single laptop, and immediately notices that the call is being monitored.
After some bad stalling on Jane's part, Saunders tells her to give Jack the phone, and the manly men trade threats. "You know what I'm capable of."
"Well, you know what I'M capable of." "Oh yeah? Well, you KNOW what I'm capable of!" "Oooo, I'm scared. YOU know what I'm..." Anyway, drama abounds.

Adam and Super Chloe manage to trace the call and get an address, and Chase takes his team there in a fleet of Ford F150's. After telling Kim to take Jane back to CTU, he takes off in the chopper. Now, this is a problem for me, and I know we have to have the bear trap set up for later, but, c'mon.
Jane is the only thing they've got going for them. Saunders has beaten them at every possible opportunity. And the send Jane off in a single car with Kim and 2 disposable agents? It hurts the brain.

Meanwhile, Michele has finally gotten her test results back (which based on the fact she is not bleeding from the head should be pretty obvious by now), and is relieved to find that she is immune to the virus - unlike disposable agent 63 in the background. Tony finally gets emotional when they are on the phone, and she is hauled off in a van to NHS for observation.

Palmer holds a pseudo press conference with no recorders of any kind, and explains the situation. He urges them to tell people that the safest course of action is to return home and stay there. OK, this hurts the brain too. I can feel blood vessels popping. This is the press. Palmer is not telling them to NOT tell the public. Just here's a couple of random facts, please do the right thing. If he's telling anyone at all, shouldn't he be having a major televised event telling the country these things, instead of allowing Fox News to spin it out of control? Vision, blurring...

Adam is tracking anyone coming or going from Saunders terror loft, and Saunders knows he's been located, and probably being watch by satellite.
British IT sidekick panics and tries to flee, so, like all good bad guys, Saunders shoots him. Why would anyone ever want to be a henchman?
Saunder's thinks it will be easier to slip away when there is a crowd he can disappear into. Of course, he also has a backup plan, and makes a phone call, asking if "she has left yet," and that someone should stay on her. We are forced to interpret this as Jane and Calamity Kim, but, ohhhh, a plot twist is a comin'. Someone should really count the plot twists.

Kim and Jane load into their CTU-mobile, and Kim notices some suspicious types ogling them, but shrugs it off as if they were cougar tracks. Some girl talk ensues.

At CTU, Adam is keeping an eye on the satellite feed, and, ever the trouble maker, Chloe discovers that Adam's sister is in one of the quarantined zones and has become infected. Though she whines and cajoles in that special grating way only she can, Tony decides to tell Adam. He gives him an opportunity to call his sister, but expects him to be sane enough to continue his work. Eventually, Super Chloe catches that Adam messed up on the satellite feed, reports it to Tony, and with more good judgement, he lets Adam continue to work (or not as the case may be).

On the phone, Saunders says to someone that he knows he is surrounded, but plans to wait until Jack shows up to do anything. When Jack finally arrives and Chase gives him the tour, Jack is convinced that Saunders is still in there, but knows that they are there. How does he know? "Because I would know," he says. Cocky bastard. Over the bullhorn, Jack tells Saunders to surrender, that the President will not give into anymore demands, that they have his daughter, and he has no other choice. Saunders continues to look menacing in his black turtleneck.

As the CTU mobile is stopped by a crossing train, a motorcycle pulls up along side and the driver looks at Kim. We groan, because of course, Kim must get into more trouble.

On the phone with Jack, Saunders refuses to come outside and claims to need a few minutes to think things over. Why this isn't a danger sign to Jack, I don't know. Saunders gets another mystery call stating that some task has been finished, and immediately makes a call to Tony suggesting he open a web socket and take a look. What he sees is Michele (not Kim!) being held hostage, and is ordered to comply with Saunders demands or she will be dead in 15 seconds. When he hesitates, Saunders orders his man to take out one of her eyes. As the knife moves forward, Tony relents. He orders the CTU agents to the front of the building with a "Code 9" (didn't Nina have Chase use a Code 6? I need these codes...). As the agents move away, Saunders emerges and walks down a completely empty and un-monitored street all by his lonesome.

So, what have we learned? There are 4 episodes left. How many more plot twists can there be? Is there another mole inside CTU (in which case they really have to work on their background checks), or is Adam just asleep at the wheel? Is Michele in cahoots with Saunders - why was she being watched- and does she have some sort of antidote? What exactly is IN those little pills Palmer keeps taking? What has become of Scary Sherry and how will she screw things up in the next episode? What happened to Chase's mystery baby? And most importantly, will there be a steamy back seat affair between Kim and Jane? Only time will tell. Well, 4 more hours anyway...

So says VicBot!

self is: wrongrobot #

Film News: Batman Begins, Hellboy, Blade 3, Spider-Man 3, Hulk 2

It's been a busy weekend, that's certainly true. This wrong robot was in Hawai'i with a certain Monkeybites, trolling and boozing and in general, what I like to call (thanks to G. Love and his Special Sauce) Atlantic City Lounging...but not in Atlantic City. In Hawai'i, on the Big Island, or Place With Barren Wasteland Of Lava, on a resort literally carved into the dry lava and wielding tons of imported earth, landscaping, trees, and of course, sand. Kind of surreal, the artifice, but hey, it's Hawai'i, and only one of several islands. We had a good time, consumed imbibements and ate victuals. Some vomitus in the snorkel at bad times, but no drowning.

On to playing catch-up with interesting tidbits that have come to light since last Thursday.

First, the comic-related films:

Batman Begins: Thankfully, shortly on the heels of that awkwardly posed and oddly puffy teaser image released to Entertainment Weekly last week, the official Batman Begins film site has released three more images, which offer somewhat more reassuring imagery of the new design. More on this shortly in a separate segment we shall call: "Treatise on Cowling, in Two Parts" but here's the best of the images:


Hellboy: Rick Cortes, a freelance illustrator and special effects artist, who posts on the Hellboy forums as "HellboyOne" has suffered a stroke. In a pleasantly surprising and touching gesture of community support and respect, members of the Hellboy comics and film community have donated original art and memorabilia to an Ebay auction in order to raise proceeds for the un-insured artist's humugous medical bills. Pieces include original art and sketches, various merchandise, and more. The auctions begin to close in about 24 hours, so get in on the goods and help a guy out who, at 30, should be worrying about follicles, not blood clots. Read the full story here: Hellboy Community Comes to the Rescue for Cortes, and investigate the auction here: RBoyd's Hellboy Auction


Blade 3: Trinity: Fans of the Wu-Tang Clan, or fans of the films Ghost Dog Samurai, Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Kill Bill Vol. 2, know that RZA makes one hell of a film scorer. After besting himself on the Kill Bills, he appears to have even more tricks up his sleave, according to a recent interview on his website: RZA Scores Blade 3: Trinity. Apparently, we can look forward to an 80-seat orchestration of his far out pieces. That now makes two reasons to see this film, this possibly being the other, though the jury's still out:

Ehh, who am I kidding. I'll just wait for the soundtrack. Thenkssss.


Spider-Man 3: At the recent WonderCon Comic Convention, Tobey Maguire was on hand to show a trailer for Spider-Man 2 and discuss, among other things, early word on Spider-Man 3. When polled, the audience strongly demanded Venom to be the vilaain for the franchise's third act. Ho ha wake me when it's over. However, this robot was amused to learn that Maguire suggested Sandman was his personal favorite, and hey, though the character has been somewhat of a dope in the comics, the potential for effects work is staggering. Get the guys on board from Mummy to do the sand FX and we could have one hell of a visual display. Wrongrobot's pick for the role of Sandman: Michael Wincott.


Hulk 2: In non-news, Zap2it reports in an interview with Troy star Eric Bana that he claims to not have been contacted regarding any plans for Hulk 2, though he's contractually obligated to play Banner once more if the studio rolls with a sequel. Ang Lee is not involved, according to Avi Arad at Marvel, which would please 99% of the viewers of the Hulk film, and disappoint this robot, frankly. Monkey+Robot went on record early and often in support of the film, despite...Monkeybites not having...seen it...and likely not liking it even if he had... but anyway, read the review here. It's a doozy. Oh, and he's not the next Bond either.

Stay tuned for Comic news...

self is: wrongrobot #

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