Wednesday, September 22, 2010

From the Vaults of ETTM: Biker Mice From Mars

I wrote this over a year ago (7/5/09, according to Blogger), but never published it for some reason. It was literally exactly like this, minus an updated ending. Strange that I didn't like it, because I used to love this show. Anyways, here are some lost ETTM archives!

In the late 80's and early 90's, every single children's programming company on the planet tried to match the commercial success of the ever-popular Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise. Numerous companies tried (lookin' at you, Street Sharks), but only one succeeded (partially). This is it's story.


Biker Mice From Mars
According to this show, which ran 65 episodes between 1993 and 1996, a race of mice-people live on Mars that enjoy leather vests, big shiny guns, and motorcycles. Their home planet (yeah, Mars) is taken over by another alien race called the Plutakians who apparently smell really bad. These Plutakians wipe out the entire "biker mice" race (which doesn't have a witty name, surprisingly) minus three, named Throttle, Vinnie, and Modo (respectively).
I'm not making this up.
Anyways, these three mice-people crash land a ship in Chicago, and some crazy, fucked up shit goes down that basically adds a non-lesbian female mechanic (apparently they exist) named "Charley" to their ranks (seriously though, not a lesbian). Then some Plutakian dude shows up and tries to kill them all, and his name is Lawrence Limburger. Even better, he's a fat, 1930's gangster-type fellow whose stupid plans are always foiled by the Biker Mice at the end of every episode.
Again, I assure you that this is all fact.
Even better, I forgot to mention that the giant mice-people are all three cyborgs, and were all three apparently damaged in various ways during the same disaster (which the show never explained).
Even better, one of the "standout quotes" from the show (according to someone on Wikipedia with way too much time on their hands) was as follows:

"In this wild and woolly universe, there are three things you can count on: your brains, your bros and your bike!"

I think the brilliance of this quote speaks for itself. You have the reference to the fact that the characters are mice ("wild and wooly," though "wooly" is a poor adjective to use when describing mice), the fact that they are brothers ("bros"), and the fact that they ride motorcycles ("bike"). It's an all-encompassing quotation, really.
As a kid, I ate this shit up. Having crack for breakfast every morning probably helped. I mean, look at this fucking intro:

NOTE: You may want to go view it on its YouTube page, the sizing is a bit funny here. God forbid you miss a half-inch of biker mice'd goodness.

Have you ever seen anything more 90's in your life? Listen to that fucking gut-bucket guitar solo wailing through the entire video. And the robot voice at the beginning, reminding you seven times that you are, in fact, watching some fucking Biker Mice From Mars?

Want to know the best thing about the Biker Mice From Mars?

IT'S STILL ON THE AIR (kinda)!!!

In 2006, some British cartoon network got a wild hair up their ass and decided to start making new episodes of Biker Mice From Mars. It ran for two years before going on hiatus, and promised to make its return eventually. In April of 2010, it aired a few new episodes in the U.K., none of which have made it stateside.
Now, I haven't seen any episodes of the new series, but the general consensus is that it is essentially the same, if not funnier. The Brits seem to love it, but since the show is essentially a caricature of mid-90's American biker culture, it could just be the show that their hipster-types love ironically.

On an interesting side note, while researching this, I noticed that Beverly Hills: 90210 alums Luke Perry and Ian Ziering both have done voice acting for the show. What sort of weird coincidence is that?

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Greatest Movie Ever Made.

In cinema, there are many movies experts consider to be "the greatest." Some say it's The Shawshank Redemption. Some say it's The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. I, however, believe something different. Made in 1997, directed by one of the best directors ever, and starring the first and second greatest actors of all time, Face/Off is my choice for the coveted title of "THE GREATEST MOVIE EVER MADE, OR THAT WILL BE MADE, EVER."
Have you ever seen this movie the entire way through without taking a break? No you haven't, because the last guy that tried it had his eyeballs turned into testicles by the sheer amounts of testosterone emanating from his television screen. And that was just during the opening credits. This movie is so awesome that one time, when a guy quoted the movie at a dance club, every single speaker in the entire building exploded, deafening everyone within a two-block radius. Permanently.
It's so awesome, that I can only write this article in bite-sized nuggets, because if you were to read all of this at once, your dog would inexplicably begin to hate you and all of your friends. So for the first time ever, compiled in one place, are...


1. During theatrical screenings, men and women alike had to wear specially-made tire-rubber brassieres to prevent their hardened nipples from tearing through their t-shirts.

2. Three-hour intermissions were allotted every fifteen minutes during these screenings as well, because so many people soiled their undergarments every time either of the stars came on screen. And no, I'm not referring to feces.

3. When the Academy of Arts and Sciences was voting for the 1997 Oscars, Face/Off was immediately disqualified because three members vomited blood and pieces of lung during private screenings. One of them died. It was then deemed "too awesome to even consider for anything other than sound editing," an award it later lost to Titanic. And we all know how bad Titanic sucks. And that's how I just proved that the Oscars are rigged.

4. The last 4/5 of the director commentary on the DVD consists of John Woo screaming violently as if he is being beaten within an inch of his life by a crowbar-wielding Nicolas Cage. That's because it's precisely what's happening. Woo claimed that Cage "may have over-acted a bit" during one of the opening scenes, only to have Cage sprint from three counties over to deliver a beatdown. No word on how he heard Woo from that far away, but scientists are working on it (see "Nic Cage Bat-Ear Theory").
Note: The gurgling noise combined with groaning you hear during the credits is just Woo lying on the ground, choking on a combination of teeth, skull and jaw fragments, and blood. He survived and made Paycheck, the second-greatest film of all time.

5. If you are a gay man, DO NOT WATCH THIS MOVIE. Every single time a homosexual male watches this movie, John Travolta's neck grows another centimeter in diameter. No one knows why.

6. Every single person on the planet owns this movie on DVD. Some don't even own DVD players, or even televisions. Some don't even know they own it. But everyone does.

7. Travolta and Cage actually had their faces switched during filming.This accounted for $70 million of the film's $80 million budget. The other $10 million was spent on cans of gasoline, explosives, real guns, live ammo and speedboats.

8. During the attempted recordings of voices for dubbing this movie in other languages, sixteen people from various countries died. Turns out their bodies couldn't handle the pressure of being put into Cage or Travolta's shoes.

9. There isn't a novelization of this movie, because every time someone tried typing the story out, their computer would suddenly burst into flames when they got to the notorious speed boat-chase scene.
That being said, John Woo also had to engrave the entire script out onto stone tablets. By hand. For every actor and every person that worked on the film (even the catering staff).

10. Men: If you put the orchestral soundtrack of this movie on while attempting to make moves on a lady, her clothes will instantly evaporate off of her body and she will suddenly find you sexually irresistible. But be wary, because if a woman does the same to a man, his penis will instantly explode and kill the both of you (caused, of course, from the instantaneous flow of blood to his shaft; because a woman knowing how awesome Face/Off is will literally blow your dick off).

If this completely factual essay has not made you want to sprint (not run) to your DVD collection and have your mind blown for the thousanth time by its awesomeness, I'm not doing my job and deserve nothing more than to slit my wrists with the sharpened edge of my own DVD copy.

Monday, May 17, 2010

The top five worst videogame controllers ever.

I'm back after nine months. Woo.
And since apparently all I can do is write top five lists that four people will understand, I'm going to go ahead and write a top five list that four people will understand. Enjoy!

#5: NES

Before the comfortability (yeah, I made that up) of a controller could be considered a major selling point in the then-nonexistent console wars, a little Japanese company named Nintendo that made arcade cabinets decided to unleash their version of a home videogame system onto North American shores in 1985. In the years after its arrival, the reported cases of carpal tunnel syndrome went up by nearly 70%.
I completely made that up, but my point is that the NES controller sucked. Sure, some of the greatest games of all time were played using this little fucker here, but your hands HATED you after the 67th straight hour of Super Mario Bros. There were just so many design flaws. Something as indistinct as human hands were not meant to hold something as distinct as a rectangle; plain and simple. It just didn't work. Luckily, they kinda, sorta, maybe fixed this with the SNES. Or rather, they just sorta added circles to the lower corners. Either way, it was a massive fucking improvement.

#4: AtariOkay, I understand that this was one of the first systems and all, but seriously? A joystick and a SINGLE button? Now we have controllers with sixteen buttons and four joysticks, and even that isn't enough. Granted, you didn't really have a lot of action in those early games, but still. I'd at least half-expect the addition of some shoulder buttons or something. You know, to...shoot things with? Pixel-y things, like that blob that sorta looks like an alligator. Or that blob that looks kinda like Danny DeVito. You know, things that you'd shoot if they were coming at you at a rate of 3 PPS (pixels per second).

#3: ColecoVision

I'm going to let a hypothetical father/son conversation express my feelings for this particular controller.

Father: "What the fuck is this shit? A calculator?"
Son: "No, dad. That's the controller for my ColecoVision. It's a video ga-"
Father: "What kind of faggot game wants you to add? Are queers makin' games?"
Son: "No, you use the contr-"
Father: "Are you a queer, boy?"
Son: "No, dad."
Father: "Damn straight you ain't." *takes a swig of beer* If I ever find you fuckin' another boy I'll skin you both and make shoes outta ya. You keep that shit in the fuckin' Navy. Remember that.
Mother: *muffled sobbing heard from the bedroom*

#2: XBOX (1st generation)

I'm not quite sure who they had act as a stand-in for the average human hand when they made this controller (because, you know, that's how controllers are designed), but he/she must have had some fucking massive He-Man hands or something. Have you seen how dwarfed hands are when holding this thing? It's as big as a Caddy's steering wheel.
I'm (hardly) exaggerating, but you get the idea. They fixed it with the second generation, released under a year later (assumedly because peoples' hands didn't mutate like Microsoft wanted them to), and perfected it with the XBOX 360's controller; but hardcore HALO fans will always remember their severe forms of Carpal Tunnel they developed after 17-hour playing sessions.

#1: DreamCastIf aliens someday come to Earth long after the physical remnants of the wiped-out human race have deteriorated, and use old, still-existing plastic items in an attempt to imagine what humans once looked like, they are totally fucked if they find a DreamCast controller.
What sick, twisted human being designed this insane piece of absolute mindfucked-ness? How the fuck are you supposed to hold this? Are we supposed to disjoint our thumbs in order to do something as simple as hit the start button? Why does it have a port for a memory card with a screen? Why is the cord coming out of the bottom?
The only way this could be more uncomfortable is if a giant, shaky robotic hand came out of the bottom and forcefully jacked you off while you played Jet Set Radio Future. Sans lube. No wonder this system failed so miserably. Great job, Sega.