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Topics - Jesse James

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Toy Reviews / RAT Continues: Yoda & Younglings
« on: December 16, 2004, 02:19 AM » is proud to present our first ever Review-A-Thon...  It's a way we're going to clean out some old reviews we've got backlogged and get a little something for you, the viewer, to read over theholidays.

Today I'm kicking it off with the Yoda & Younglings, since they're older on the list.

4 figures for the price of two?  Count me in folks!

The Younglings and Yoda were a nice little surprise from Hasbro, and made good use of the same sculpt while offering new parts as well.

Could they be better?  Couldn't everything?  But in the end they were pretty decent...  Short of articulation, and there being no human child to sneak in there (Customizers, get thee to the clearance bins!), the Younglings and Yoda were overall pretty decent.

Yoda was probably the best offering of the character up to that point...  He's been trumped since so I'm all for a new AOTC Yoda that's poseable, and sporting a softgoods cloak!

So, read on, and enjoy!

Watto's Junk Yard / MTV's "Real World" Educational?
« on: December 16, 2004, 01:49 AM »
Who'd have thought that MTV's "Real World" TV show could ever educate someone?  Not I!

But as I sit here tonight, I tell you that I've learned more about Phobias through this show than ever in my life...  I'm obviously far from an expert on them.

Tonight's re-run featured a phobia I'd never have guessed, and last season of the show featured yet another!

My fascination of tonight's episode was when the one girl in the house decided that she didn't want to participate in a benefit that her "job" that she's set up with via the show was not something she could handle.

Her problem?  She's "afraid" of people with disabilities apparantly...  Yes, this is I guess a phobia, and not discrimination of any kind.  Just a fear.

Now, of course there's some sarcasm in my voice as I mock this...  The girl's excuse was along the lines of, "When I was little, they let the special ed kids out to play with us and they would push us around on the playground and now I'm afraid of them so I don't want to participate at the benefit for our organization".

The kids had Cerebal Palsy...  It had to be explained to the girl about what that is exactly, and how they're not mentally challenged...

I wonder why the show, and the people on it, felt justified in calling it a "phobia" instead of blatant intollerance towards a group of people...  It was one of the dumbest things I've seen on TV...  Yeah I should expect it from "The Real World", but this moment truly triumphed over every benchmark of stupidity that show has ever set...

Case in point:

Last season, the other "phobia" brought to my attention was that apparantly you can be afraid of REALLY big boats.  The "punker" chick that season, who signed up for a RW taping which took place at a major city on the West Coast, and on top of that a major harbor (I forget the city off-hand), was afraid any time she saw a boat...  NOt like dingy's, but like a big boat.

She ran, crying, back to her house when she was at the docks for their first day of their job the show gave them that season...  There was a passenger liner within her line of sight.

See, I had no idea there was so much stupidity, errr, I mean so many types of phobias out there.  Learn something new every day, huh? :)

BTW yes, I do kill brain cells watching the show some.  I like watching people fight, and always like to see who the most psycho person is every season.

Toy Reviews / Review-A-Thon: Hoth Trooper
« on: December 13, 2004, 10:25 PM » is proud to present our first ever Review-A-Thon...  It's a way we're going to clean out some old reviews we've got backlogged and get a little something for you, the viewer, to read over theholidays.

Today I'm kicking it off with the Hoth Rebel Soldier, since he's one of the older on the list, and one of the poorer.

Nothing like kicking it off with a dud!  :P

One of the worst figures to come out in years to me, the Hoth Rebel Soldier really has many failings...  Poor sculpt, poor pose, no decent articulation, no enjoyable features...  He really just is a lackluster effort from Hasbro on every level to me.

Feel free to read through, and share your opinions here!

Watto's Junk Yard / Comedy Clubs/Comics Discussion
« on: December 11, 2004, 06:12 AM »
I dunno if there's a topic on this or not, but whatever...  It's on my mind so I figured I'd pop a topic up for it either way.

I went to Pittsburgh's Improv tonight to catch Dave Attel's early show.  I saw Attel a few years ago for one of my birthdays actually, down at Pittsburgh's funnybone club, prior to the Improv's opening...  I loved his show, and pretty much knew his comedy.

Tonight he SMASHED my previous opinion by setting a new standard for funny.  Lots of new material, tons of great jokes and one-liners, and he mixed his best older stuff in too...  My top 3 (no order) have always been Attel, Lewis Black, and Dave Chappelle (Needless to say I'm a big Comedy Central fanatic), and I'm even moreso a fan of Attel after tonight.

I've yet to catch Black in person...  Every time he comes to Pittsburgh he's either sold out by the time I hear, or I just completely miss his show and find out about it later.  I'm vowing to catch it though.  I've not seen Chapelle either, but then again I can't say I've ever seen him listed as coming through town.

So are Comedy Clubs something you're into?  I consider this one of the best "dates" if you're looking to get you and your wife out of the house maybe, or if you're wanting to impress the new lady in your life with something fun to do.  It's pricey, but worth it.  I'm finding things like this much more enjoyable than going to clubs or bars like I used to do all the time...  Oh how age catches up to you!

Watto's Junk Yard / South Park Appreciation Thread
« on: December 2, 2004, 06:49 AM »
I find South Park to be one of my only guilty pleasures in life.  I look forward to every new episode, I always wath re-runs unless there's a show on I can't catch again, etc.

I just really like good old South Park, and I feel we should have a good South Park thread going.

So, did anyone catch tonight's new episode?

It revolved around Miss Paris Hilton, that bastion of morality and ethics.  :) 

Great ending too.  Mr. Slave has become a truly valued character.  I thought he was a short-term thing, but he's become incredibly funny within the show.

Thoughts (of any kind) on South Park anyone?

Revenge of the Sith / ROTS: The year of Articulation
« on: November 30, 2004, 12:23 AM »
OK, now...  As most of you who know me have realized, I'm a huge champion of the articulation factor.  I have found the Star Wars line has been a quagmire of under-acheivers because of lacking articulation.  Not a good thing...

Then visions of the E3 line have shown up...  Pretty articulated figures we've been seeing, and the Collection 2 ones sporting the super articulation we all know and I'd say the majority of us love.  Collection 1 itself, while laden with action features, appears to be a nice attempt at articulation itself and hiding said features.

So my question to you...  We see heavy articulation here, so what do you think of the articulation issue now? 

My stance remains the same on this issue...  Articulation makes the toy, so the more the better, however I do see that Hasbro's dropping their traditional style they've used on ball/socket joints on some figures for a hinged piece with a swivel to it.  Still retails the same motion, but is more noticeable.

The articulation on Collection 1 is definitely more noticeable than that on the C2 figures or the VOTC for instance.  Is that a big enough problem to require "griping" though?  Again, to me I would rather have a poseable Mace than one stuck in a pre-pose...  So no.  I do believe the articulation could be better hidden since they managed on the VOTC so well.

Myself, I'm happy as a clam (so far) with the images from E3's Collection 1 and 2 figures.  They're unique, and show a stronger effort from this company than they have ever shown before.  C1's still not perfect, but some of those C2 figures were really impressive to me.  I'm really anxious to see the rest of the opening E3 line-up though because so far this looks like the best effort for a film release that Hasbro has ever made.

Customizing Tips and Tricks / Antilles/Ozzel/"Angle Cut Arms" & Fun!!!
« on: November 19, 2004, 12:56 AM »
Yes, you too can enjoy the fun of simply re-arranging the left and right arms of your mundane human officers from Saga!  :)

OK, perhaps this only works on a few, but...

Captain Antilles, if you take his right and left arms, and simply replace them, and then swap the hands around so they're correct of course, creates Antilles with a very VERY neutral, "Straight" arm pose. 

He can still do the hands behind the back "at ease" pose, but now he can hold a blaster out like he's gonna shoot someone and it looks normal.  The choking feature's gone, but it's a much more neutral and useful set of arms.  Much more diverse in poses.

Ozzel works pretty much the exact same way, though the effect's not 100% as cool as Antilles.  It is still quite great actually.  I highly recommend trying these moves with your figures though.  Makes the Ozzel and Antilles BOTH a much better figure for army building/customizing since the arms are now not nearly as awkward looking when in front of the figure.  Much more natural, and all you need is new heads, and you've got a nice army of officers for your troops on either side of the Galactic Civil War.


Watto's Junk Yard / Anyone Gonna See Sponge Bob?
« on: November 18, 2004, 11:22 PM »
I guess I am...  Looks sorta funny.  I have a weird fascination with Sponge Bob ever since I saw a couple episodes...  I mean, the fact Pantera was playing some music for them made me laugh out loud.

I'm not a huge cartoon fan...  Never really got into adult swim and that stuff (I loved Spaceghost but I don't even see him on anymore), but Spongebob caught my attention, so I watch. 

Helps when you've got kids in your life to see the finer points of some of the kids shows.  SB being one of them.

Modern Classifieds / JJ's Wants/Needs Thread
« on: November 12, 2004, 03:20 AM »
I need.........

Episode One:

-Amidala (Ascension Gun)
-Jar Jar (Swimming)
-Qui Gon Jinn w/Eopie
-Bonus Pit Droids


-Deluxe Super Battledroid Builder Set (Playdohy set) (x2)***
-Deluxe General Riekean SCREENS (Only the screen)
-McQuarrie Trooper

Clone Wars Basic:

-Red ARC Trooper
-Super Articulated Clone Trooper(s)


-Scanning Tech
-Gammorrean Guard
-Sandcrawler's RA-7 Droid (Does ANYONE have an extra they'd sell???)

Anyone able to help???

Oh and I've got a bunch of 12" figures I'd love to sell...  Ask for a list.  I'd like to recoop cost, but at this point I'll sell them for some less. 

Toy Reviews / NEW Review: Capt. Antilles
« on: November 10, 2004, 11:30 PM »

Hey there boys and girls, I'm back with a new (sorta) review of Captain Antilles.

Check it out RIGHT HERE and read the whole thing, then by all means come back in here and share your thoughts too.

I'd wanted to get Antilles reviewed because he highlights a LOT of things that I always said could be done, but was told were "not possible" at the time on the Rebel Fleet Trooper.

Antilles is good, but not great like he could've been.  Nonetheless, he's a figure who's sold consistently well here in my neck of the woods, possibly due to his army building ability, and his generally good quality as a figure too.

For customizing he's one of the better ones out there though, no doubt.

Anyway, I'll cut this short so you can read on, and enjoy!

Saga '02-'04 / Gold Leader... Weirdest Figure I Ever Bought
« on: October 4, 2004, 12:36 AM »
I was at Target today looking for deals, and I walked out with only two purchases.  I picked up an extra Gold Leader as one of my buys...

This figure's messed up though, worse than any figure I've ever bought.

First, and I couldn't quite put my finger on this right away but I knew something was "off" on the face, is the fact that my Dutch is mimicing old "pink" from the wall.  He has no eyebrows painted on!

Very strange looking, but so subtle that I knew something was weird but I couldn't tell what...

Then I'm posing his legs and a piece of the knee joint (not the pin but where the leg molds to the pin) is broken and hinders the leg joint on his left leg.

Then, while fiddling with that, I notice his left thigh is a right thigh in reverse but with the proper left calf/foot. 

This is one goofy figure...  Sorta wish I hadn't opened him, but alas I'll take him to a local meeting for the old "show and tlel" and we can all admire this royal goof-up.  :)

The Original Trilogy / ROTJ Sound Funny?
« on: October 3, 2004, 03:28 AM »
I just watched my ROTJ DVD tonight with my gf, who fell asleep multiple times through it, and she and I both seemed to notice lips and voices not matching, voices seeming "low" and tough to hear...

Did anyone else notice this on their DVD?  Is it possible to get a "bad" copy of a DVD I mean?

Original Trilogy Collection / Target Sale... 10/3-10/9
« on: September 30, 2004, 05:35 PM »
Just wanted a post to let you guys know about the sale...

$3.88 basic figures
$14.99 electronic sabers
& 15% off all SW toys...

Not bad if your Target's like mine...  One near me just got Bespin Wave in, and others have OTC figures out the whazzoo including some army builders like the TIE Pilot or figs like the Jawas and such.

My Target's have also gotten the ROTJ VOTC waves in, so hopefully they'll get more in...  VOTC for 15% off just makes those figures that much MORE perfect.

Toy Reviews / JD Review: SA Clone Trooper
« on: September 27, 2004, 12:20 AM »
Old?  Yes.

Perfect Figure?  As close as Hasbro's ever achieved, and while the figure is moldy oldy, it's a good one to review...  Especially since I wrote this up quite some time ago, and wanted to bring it to the public.  Cleanin' out the closet of reviews here at JD, so keep with us on this and enjoy the blast(s) from the past as we get things in line. :)

Now, this figure's just simply incredible if you don't own it...  If you do own it, you know what I'm talking about, but have you considered all aspects of him?  Perhaps, and perhaps not, so I bring to you my in-depth review of the SA Clone.

CLICK RIGHT HERE and read the full review to see all the little things that make this great...  But also, there's a couple minor flaws of course.

Nah, nothing's perfect but damned if this isn't a close one from Hasbro.  And speaking of which, Kudos to the design team at Hasbro who really set a new bar of articulation and accuracy in the 3.75"/1:18 range of figures.  Absolutely amazing work on this one...

Now if only they'd actually make this figure easy for all fans to get ahold of, and do so in large quantities!

Watto's Junk Yard / Hurricane Ivan Sucks
« on: September 20, 2004, 04:07 PM »
OK, so I wanted to write this up because this is a collosal mess for me, though things have slowly worked out and my trauma is minor compared to some in my area...

On Friday the 18th, I went to school at my regular time...  I left around 9:50 in the morning for my 11:00 class, and the day was already sopping wet with pouring down rain and stuff.

My school's in the North Hills area of Pittsburgh, which has experienced flood problems before, and I take Route 28 South to Route 8 North to get to my school and Route 8 in particular (where it meets with 28) has seen horrible flooding in the past (route 28 follows the Allegheny River BTW, and Route 8 meets it right where a creek dumps into the Allegheny).

OK, so I go to school...  Everything's ok till about 2 miles out from my school I suddenly lose all power steering and my car almost goes off the road.  If you've never lost Power Steering, you can still steer the car but it becomes incredibly difficult to control and very "stiff" to turn the wheel.

OK, I'm PO'd, and on top of it I get to the parking lot at school and someone's taken my Umbrella out so I'm bumpershoot-less.

I pop the hood, stand in the rain, get soaked, and look around while talking on the cell to my father.  I find the problem though, as he points me toward the Serpentine Belt which is a belt on a car that weaves in and out of a bunch of sprockets and runs a few systems on most cars.  On mine, it runs power steering among others.  The belt's not broke, but it's off the sprockets/spindels.

So I threw a Serp belt, and while my car will run it also can damage it if I drive it, so I can't take this car home.

Topping all this off up to this point, is the fact I have tickets to see Mitch Hedberg at the Improv Friday evening, and I gotta be down where its at by 6:30, and that leaves me little time to get out of school at 3:20, go home, get cleaned up, go to my girlfriend's and get her, and be there on time.

OK, so the plan is that my father's gonna come down with a towtruck guy, and he's gonna ride home with the towtruck towing my car and he'll leave me HIS car (My car's a 94 Le Baron Convertible, and my dad's is a 94 Le Baron Sedan.  Same engine).  This should happen while I'm at school in my classes, and I should just emerge from class to see his car.

So I go to classes, which I had to be at because my school never cancels class even though 50% of the student body commute, and I have review for two exams on the following Tuesday (tomorrow).  Class is boring as usual, but at least I learn that I'm in the top of my Managerial Accounting course which is getting me in good with my prof for it because he kind of mentors the students he feels will excel at things.  Cool!

So I leave school at 3:20 after my last class, walk down, and what do I see but MY car still sitting inthe lot.  not good because the rain's been non-stop and SUPER heavy all day because of Ivan's remnants.  Not blowing a lot, but steady downpours.

I go get into MY car and wait...  I make some cell calls because I'm kinda wondering where my old man is now.  Problem #2 has arisen though, and it's that the force of these torrential downpours is forcing water INTO my car.  My ragtop isn't holding up to this at all, and I'm sitting in a soaking wet interior...  Not good at ALL.

I'm talking ot my mom trying to find out when dad left to see if he just left really late, and when I am here he comes...  The towtruck dude goes right past me to a lot down a hill, and dad pulls up beside me...  Now, my father's not the most civil/nice man on Earth, so he starts yelling at me (while I'm still on the phone) to get in his car...  Why, I don't know, because I would've had to moved my car anyway to get it lined up with the towtruck's winch, and had to have gotten out anyway.

He finally leaves without me to get the towtruck guy (because I yelled at him to do so), and they come back, but because my father pissed me off so royally, I'm now kinda "rushed" and I forget some stuff in my car...  Namely, my cell phone car charger.  This'll be important shortly.

So finally my father leaves with the towtruck guy and my car, and I leave in my father's car.  I tell them "Don't go back to route 8.  If it wasn't flooded before, it is now, so follow me".  I'm gonna go through an area north of my school called North Park, and I'm gonna go get on the Pennsylvania Turnpike which dumps onto Route 8 North of my school and the PA Turnpike's next exit is right down on route 28 a little closer to where I live.

It's sort of a long way around, but I know 8's a mess.

So what does the Towtruck guy do?  Goes to route 8 and ignores me...  Well I can't piss with them so I leave and head for North Park.

The road to get there is OUT on its lower portions...  Big chunks of it gone, cops sending you away from that place, but fortunately I don't need the lower part so I go up where I need to be and get off at N. Park.  NP's flooded though, so some roads are out.  I weave my way through it though, and find myself on a road I know but parts of it are also out...  Floods, mudslides, trees down, wrecks...

I wind up finally getting on a road that WILL come out on Route 8 RIGHT at the Turnpike exit.  How I got on this road, I dunno, but I knew it when I got there and boy was I happy.

I'm heading maybe a mile from route 8 towards it, and guess what....

The SAME F'N BELT pops off my dad's car.  I swear to god, same thing.  We'll come later on Saturday find out that any amount of spray up into this cars will pop that belt off.  It's a failing they have, but driving slowly through overflowing creeks is how yous tall your car out.  In short, if it's flooding, don't take any of these cars out.

So I pull into a Sheetz, which is where I can limp my car to.  It's on route 8.  I leave it, tell them inside that it's broken and that I'm gonna try going home and someone will be up and tow it.  They're ok with that.

So my dad will take 3 hours to get home...  It's about 4:30 p.m. Friday now that I'm at Sheetz.  Dad'll get home around 8 maybe, so 3.5 hours.

Sheetz is a cool enough place to be though because it's open 24 hours, gas is cheap so I can run my car with the heater on I just can't drive it, and I have food because Sheetz sells hoagies and coffee and nacho's...  They're cool if you don't have them.  I dunno how national Sheetz are.

Anyway, I talk to my mom some, my buddy Dan who lives in the city, etc., and none of them can come get me...  Dan just won't because of the Comedy Club, and my mother can't because she's evacuating everything from the first floor to our 2nd because the flood waters are at the porch (My parents have no basement.  OLD house).

On top of THAT, I can't find my girlfriend...  She lives in a highly flood-prone area that's been evacuated twice this year already, and she's been evacuated again...  I'm worried about her.

OK, so time rolls on...  I get in touch with my girlfriend eventually, and she's ok and all that stuff.  No problems, but her house is off-limits and she forgot her cell phone of all days.  To make matters even worse, my phone's dying and because of my father's asinine behavior I forgot the car charger.   ::)

My phone dies, and now I'm having real trouble trying to coordinate anything with my girlfriend to come get me...  But as it turns out, this all has happened in this ammount of time:

-PA TUrnpike's closed due to Landslide.
-PA Route 8's closed South-bound due to heavy flooding from 2 boroughs up.
-PA Route 28's closed off and on due to rockslides
-McKnight Road closed due to flooding
-Route 910 through Indianola Closed due to bridges out (people stranded)
-all back roads from where my girlfriend lives to route 8 (they all empty onto route 8 somewhere) are closed due to flooding, mudslides/rockslides, trees down, etc.)

So, basically, I'm stuck for the time being...  I'm now using a pay phone, which I bet I paid out $11 in payphone useage trying to find a ride home and my girlfriend.

Eventually my father gets home and by 10 he determines that he WON'T come get me.  He and my mother are afraid of going out in the bad weather and themselves getting stuck, which at the time (I'm sick, cold, in soaking wet clothes, and feel like crap overall and wanna get home) I was PO'd but over time I've decided that I just can't expect that of them...

The thing that irked me though is that I talked to police, truckers, etc., and all of them told me that the Turnpike and 28 were open so my parents COULD have gotten to me, but they were listening to the radio and were afraid so they wouldn't.  I was right, and they weren't, but they never listen so whatcha gonna do, ya know?

So I try my girlfriend who FINALLY I get ahold of because they FINALLY let her in the house...  She's just got a flooded basement, but the road she lives on, just about 8 houses down, there's entire houses gone.  She was lucky.

She is amazed my folks won't come get me, but she can't get to 28 to get to the Turnpike to get to route 8...  Crap.  So, she gets in her truck and drives on her CLOSED road to get me.  She's gutsy like that!

She comes, at approximately 11:30, and finally picks me up...  I go back to her place and spend the night drying out and feeling like someone kicked me in the jimmy (heh), and I get home finally the next day at about 4 p.m. to survey the damage on my road...  Cars swept away, houses destroyed inside...  A mess.

So, that was my tale of Woe Friday...  I had no idea when I got home that Chris had even done the server changes and stuff...

Luckily my parent's house was spared any damage.  The houses down the road aren't so lucky, but nobody was hurt either in all of this.  And my girlfriend rocks the house because she came and got me.

And Hurricane Ivan can eat a fat one.

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