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Footprints

Sinister Tales of Terror Ep. 15 (Footprints)

Hello there, dear listeners. It has come time once more to venture down into the Vault for one of my Sinister Tales of Terror! I am unaware of how the weather might be treating you. However here at the Vault there is a rather nasty snow storm brewing. Which is why I have chosen a tale that I call ‘Footprints’.

With such delightfully horrid weather howling outside these walls. I can assure the best place to be as a matter of fact is beside myself. In front of the roaring fire. Moreover it might even chase away the chills of the story I have to share with you today.

Footprints is a true tale, an incident that occurred in Haddonfield. Many, many years ago during a similar snow storm. In fact we have John Ives to thank for sending me an electronic missive, requesting such a tale.

I want to take a moment and thank The Retroist once again for that charming, moreover vintage artwork for the broadcast. I must assume that he was becoming rather embarrassed over the previous artwork, eh? It is not as if Victor Sage can deliver a radio broadcast properly. To say nothing of supplying the appropriate artwork for my radio program, eh? Heh, heh.

Now I beg of you to extinguish your electric lights. Lean in closer to the soothing glow of your personal radio. As I begin this broadcast for my Sinister Tales of Terror…

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Major Disaster

IWA Star Studded Wrestling: Major Disaster

Major Disaster
Super stoked! I picked up this IWA Star Studded Wrestler, Major Disaster in a trade with a stranger on Facebook. I had a different guy that I got at the Santa Rosa Toy Con but he wasn’t one of my favorite dudes. It was The Russian Wolf.

So when I mentioned during a posting on a wrestling figure group that I had the Wolf a fella messaged me and asked if I’d be willing to trade for a Major Disaster that he had doubles of. I was totally interested.

So, anyhow are you familiar with these dudes? BITD, and even still today I was crazy into wrestling and I’d pick up just about anything wrestling related that I could afford. Do you remember how at the Toys R Us they had an aisle of like lower quality or lower priced action figures? Like Eagle Force and whatever Remco had out at the time plus No Name Fare type stuff..? These guys were found there. As I recall they were also fairly cheap. Which was a concern for me, a kid on a budget.. Here is a pic of the back of the card where you can see The Major’s bio and such.
major-disaster-i-see-robots

I liked how each grappler had a backstory. That raised them over other random wrestling figures of the time. It made them seem more important. More real.

I believe that I actually had every dude. I recall getting a multi-pack that had 4 dudes and that I picked up the other ones individually. There was also a ring but it was like 20 bucks and way out of my price range.

Major Disaster here was one of my faves. He crossed over into my GI Joe Universe and acted as a mercenary for The Joe Team.
Major Disaster

I imagined that he was like a super tough master of unarmed combat. He also engaged in some classic fights with Cobra’s boxing instructor Big Boa in my yard.

I actually built a small ring out of a piece of wood, some long nails and giant rubber-bands. They’d break all the time.

I ran a small circuit with The Major, Big Boa, Sgt. Slaughter and some other figures that I thought were tough, Remco Mr. Miyagi too if I remember right.

Here is a nice pic of the rest of the dudes. Overall The Iron Barbarian was my fave. This was back in The Mad Max days where Punk Rock dudes where super scary so he really grabbed my attention. He also crossed over into my personal GI Joe Universe. He of course joined Cobra and was a Drednok of sorts before I had Zartan and his crew.
iwa-star-studded-wrestling-major-disaster

I actually had The Iron Barbarian way after I’d gotten rid of a lot of my childhood actions figures, most of them were real haggard. I wish I still had them but also wish that I’d taken better care of them so that it would have been worth keeping. Anyway, I held onto The Barbarian forever. His punk rock stylings earned him a place in my house amongst my early 20’s knick-knacks.

I actually don’t remember when he disappeared. It was one of those things where one day you notice that something that should be there isn’t there but you also realize that it’s pointless looking for it because it’d probably been gone for quite awhile. My guess is that a guest or a friend of a guest swiped him. At the time there were a lot of weird fools rolling through my pad. That’s like everyone’s 20’s I’d imagine.

Anyhow, thanks for giving this a read. If you have a second hop on over to iseerobots.com every Wed for my podcast The TRU RPT. It’s a dose of Pop-Culture Talk that’s out of this world. You can also visit the I See Robots Facebook Page too!

Spaceship Earth

Witness The Firepower of Disney’s Spaceship Earth!

I believe that if you were to travel back in time to 1977. In an effort to interview the overjoyed and dazzled audiences that were leaving Star Wars. Then ask them to share what they felt was the most mind-blowing moment of the film. I am referring of course to moments that just made the audiences jaws drop.

In general I would be willing to wager that two moments from Star Wars would stand out. For the first time viewers I should add. The reveal of how large the Star Destroyer is as it chases down the Tantive IV.
star-destroyer-star-wars

Of course in the first film they went by Imperial Cruisers – it wasn’t until The Empire Strikes Back they earned the moniker of Star Destroyer. I would make the case that the second awe-inspiring moment was the introduction of the Death Star itself.
death-star-star-wars

Having said all of that and coming from someone who saw it in 1977. There was very little in Star Wars that didn’t make me want to constantly live in that universe. As a matter of fact I still love all things Star Wars and look forward to Rogue One as well.

Apparently that is a sentiment shared by the folks at Walt Disney World. As they’ve transformed Epcot’s Spaceship Earth into…the Death Star!
spaceship-earth-epcot-death-star-powering-up

An appropriate choice as the 18-story geodesic sphere naturally looks a little like that fearsome battle station. The design of course helped by the mind of Ray Bradbury, who also wrote the original storyline for the ride.
epcot-1982-06

Spaceship Earth

Now witness the firepower of this fully ARMED and OPERATIONAL Spaceship Earth -ahem – battle station!

[Via] Disney Parks

A very big thanks to Andrew Liszewski of io9 for the heads up on this transformation. I would very much like to be in attendance at Walt Disney World to see this demonstration myself. At the very least I can take comfort that Rogue One is only a mere week away from released to theaters!

COMET TV Movies

What COMET TV Movies will be available this December

A few weeks ago, I talked about my enjoyment of COMET TV. Since then I have started receiving email from COMET that breaks down what they will be showing for the month. December is looking pretty good for COMET TV Movies, starting with the upcoming weekend where they will be showing Buckaroo Banzai! If you would like more information about COMET TV, visit their website and sign up for their mailing list.

What COMET TV Movies can you watch this month?

The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai (1984)

Friday December 9 at 8/7C

Saturday December 10 at 8/7C

Monday December 12 at MIDNIGHT/11C

Friday December 16 at 4/3C

Saturday December 24 at Noon/11C

Beyond the Door III (1990)

Wednesday December 21 at 10am/9C

Saturday December 17 at 10/9C

Saturday December 31 at 6/5C

The Black Cat (1984)

Wednesday December 7 at 4/3C

Tuesday December  13 2am/1C

Tuesday December 20 Noon/11C

Blacula (1972)

Thursday December 15 MIDNIGHT/11C

Tuesday December 20 MIDNIGHT/11C

Critters (1986)

Tuesday December 13 at Noon/11C

Sunday December 18 at 4/3C

Wednesday December 21 at 6/5C

Critters 4 (1992)

Thursday December 15 at Noon/11C

Sunday December 18 at 6/5C

Monday December 19 at 4/3C

Dark Tower (1987)

Saturday December 10 at 2am/1C

Saturday December 24 at 2am/1C

Daughters of Satan (1972)

Saturday December 24 at 6/5C

Thursday December 29 at Noon/11C

Delirious (1991)

Wednesday December 7 at 10am/9C

Saturday December 10 at Midnight/11C

Friday December 16 at 6/5C

Saturday December 24 at 10am/9C

Deranged (1974)

Monday December 19 at MIDNIGHT/11C

Donovan’s Brain (1953)

Tuesday December 6 at 10am/9C

Saturday December 17 at 2am/1C

Tuesday December 27 at 2am/1C

Encounter at Raven’s Gate (1990)

Tuesday December 13 at 10am/9C

Flash Gordon (1980)

Friday December 30 at 8/7C

Saturday December 31 at 8/7C

Frogs (1972)

Saturday December 17 at 2/1C

Tuesday December 20 at 4/3C

Thursday December 22 at MIDNIGHT/11C

Friday December 30 at MIDNIGHT/11C

Gog (1954)

Monday November 21 at 4/3C

The Haunted House of Horror (1970)

Saturday December 24 at 2/1C

I.F.O. (1986)

Saturday December 31 at 2am/1C

K-9000 (1991)

Monday December 12 at 2am/1C

Tuesday December 27 at MIDNIGHT/11C

Mac and Me (1988)

Friday December 23 at 6/5C

Motel Hell (1980)

Saturday December 17 at 6/5C

New Year’s Evil (1980)

Saturday December 31 at MIDNIGHT/11C

Portrait of an Escort (1980)

Saturday December 31 at 10am/9C

Retroactive (1997)

Sunday December 18 at 2/1C

Scream, Blacula, Scream (1973)

Saturday December 10 at 4/3C

Species (1995)

Saturday December 10 at Noon/11C

Wednesday December 14 at 2am/1C

Squirm (1976)

Saturday December 17 at 4/3C

Thursday December 22 at 2am/1C

Friday December 30 at 2am/1C

Tank Girl (1995)

Friday December 23 at 8/7C

Saturday December 24 at 8/7C

Timebomb (1991)

Saturday December 10 at 10/9C

Timestalkers (1987)

Friday December 16 at 10am/9C

To All a Good Night (1983)

Saturday December 24 at 10/11C

The Twonky (1953)

Sunday December 11 at Noon/11C

Wolfen (1981)

Friday December 16 at 8/7C

Saturday December 17 at 8/7C

Lazer Tag

Yes! I Think Lazer Tag Is Still Relevant!

I am not certain about your thinking back in the day. But for myself I not only drank the Kool-Aid that was the idea of Lazer Tag as game. I also believed it was going to be THE ultimate sport of the future as well.

[Via] Mr. Classic Ads 1980s

For myself I was lucky enough to actually get my hands on a Lazer Tag game kit back in the day. That was of course the basic set a Player would need. You received the StarLyte – which was the weapon of choice in the year 3010.
Lazer Tag

Then of course you had the StarSensor, which was rather important. How else would you know you had received enough hits to be out of the game?
lazer-tag-starsensor

Last but not least you had the StarBelt. While it is true its main purpose was to keep that sensor firmly in place. It at the same time offered the opportunity for a Player of Lazer Tag to cut a sporting figure. Making a fashion statement in 3010 was just as important back in 1986. That was when the game was released by Worlds of Wonder at the very same time as Entertech’s Photon laser tag system.
lazer-tag-starbelt

Now to be absolutely honest. Lazer Tag in 3010 looks a little like Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome mixed with Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone!

[Via] My Box of Old VHS Tapes

Now most of you are well aware from the Diary Podcast that I work at an arcade. The Arkadia Retrocade. Which is how last night – thanks to the generosity of a friend, I had access to the game once again.
lazer-tag-vic-instructions

Naturally I found myself suiting up once again to play some Lazer Tag. Visions of the sport of the future filled my head as I slipped on the StarVest and StarHelmet.
lazer-tag-arcade

Because of how many people were in the arcade…as well as being old. I chose to just look the part instead of running through the arcade. Maybe tonight though we can get a game going?
lazer-tag-vic-is-ready-for-action

Now to help you get those images out of your brain. Check out this promotional video for Lazer Tag

[Via] Public John

screenshot-662

Christmas Oddities: A Visit to Santa

It’s early in December, but surely you’re getting pumped for the coming holiday and Santa’s arrival, aren’t you?

Well…?

Last week, I went to a one-night only showing of a double feature of two previous RiffTrax Live specials – 2013’s Santa Conquers the Martians, and the 2009 show Christmas Shorts-stravaganza. Both shows tripped on the bizarre nature of what Christmas looks like when viewed through an askew lens, but there was this one particular short that just absolutely tripped to the point where that lens was not only askew, but also covered in filters that can’t even make this short look halfway presentable. It screams public access (but it isn’t), low budget (which is clearly is), and contains the worst use of organ music ever.

I’m referring to A Visit to Santa!

Santa

This 1963 (Really? It isn’t older than that?!) short film was shot in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania by Clem Williams Films. According to IMDb, this was their only short film. And with production values such as these, it is easy to see why they didn’t make anything else.

screenshot-667

This horribly acted (and difficult to understand) short film is about two kids, Dick and Ann, who write a letter to Santa asking if they could visit the North Pole.

screenshot-663

Based on how these kids speak, I find it hard to believe that these kids wrote this.

screenshot-662

Because Santa is all of us, this is where he lives.

Santa, from his home at the “North Pole” (which looks like an ugly living room), obliges. He sends one of his minidress-clad elves to claim the two children.

screenshot-664

What happens next sounds more like a hostage situation than a Christmas dream come true.

screenshot-665

If you ever want to see your parents again, you’ll come with me and learn all about parades and weird toy shops.

screenshot-666

There is no way that living room is inside this “castle.”

I could tell you all about the joys of disturbing elf wear, kids taken in the night from their safe bedroom to go meet some guy claiming to be Santa, and the jolly old fat man sitting in some living room somewhere, as well as footage of parades, fireworks, fake crash landings, and overuse of narration, but I’d rather you guys witness it all yourselves.

Uploaded by ChristmasToonFuntime

Unfortunately, this is only the unriffed version. If you’d like to see the riffed version (done by the guys from Mystery Science Theater 3000 and RiffTrax – Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett), there is the version as shown during the Christmas Shorts-stravaganza, and there is also a studio version, but it is the same riffing as the version done in the live show. If you enjoy RiffTrax, consider making one or both of these a part of your collection. They’re a small business and every little bit helps, especially when they put on fantastic live shows such as the one audiences were lucky to see last week. Every penny is worth it!

And I’m not above admitting that I snorted during this short.

Allison is a lover of bad films (especially educational shorts) and funny people who riff them mercilessly. If you like what Allison has to say, check out her blog (you know the name), and follow it on Facebook for some randomness on your newsfeed. She’s also on Twitter @AllisonGeeksOut. 

Now, get dressed and hurry up! Don’t keep Allison waiting!

screenshot-665

 

Mario Paint

Watch The TMNT Intro Via Mario Paint!

While it is certainly fair to say that the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon series was aimed at children. It nevertheless helped make the previously underground comic book characters into media superstars. To say nothing of the merchandising empire it would create with toys, clothing, and a new comic series based on the animated series. Having said that though I don’t believe anyone ever expected to see the intro rendered by way of the Super Nintendo’s Mario Paint program!
Mario Paint - Mike Matei

This was done by Mike Matei of Cinemassacre. Furthermore it is not as if he digitized the opening intro of the animated show. He drew each frame by hand – starting in July of this year and just finishing in December. Each Mario Paint animation cell took him generally a half hour or more.
mike-matei-tmnt-mario-paint

What I’m saying is, Mike delivered something very special. In addition to his hard work, throw in the cover of the TMNT series song by James Ronald. You then have a bit of animation that reaches EPIC levels of awesomeness!

Enough of my jabbering. Sit down and watch how you use Mario Paint to bring the TMNT intro to life!

[Via] Cinemassacre

I really want to thank Daniel XIII for the heads up on this!
Turtle Power