Monday, October 22, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 10/22/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Hockey Mask, cut your hair in the fresh Psycho style and slip on your knife fingered glove as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the Halloween Edition of the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: Michael Jackson
Song: Threatened
Album: Invincible (Released 2001)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: N/A
Bonus Fun Fact: This song features Rod Serling's opening narration from the Twilight Zone episode "The Good Life"!

Friday, October 19, 2018

Things that scared me as a kid!

The 80s were a great time to grow up! We had incredible toys, entertaining cartoons and some of the best movies ever were created during this time. Also, this was a time where studios could get away with marketing mass murderers, movie maniacs and nightmare creatures to kids under the age of 10! These horror icons were so well know on the schoolyard that you could just mention a first name and people instantly knew who you were talking about. Jason, Freddy, Egon. These were all popular figures of the time. With so much scary stuff integrated into an 80s child's life, you would think it would have desensitized us a little, right? Even though these characters lost their edge when they began to appear as dolls, yo-yos and even on their own records, there were still some things that scared the hell out of me when I was young. Here are 3 of those things that made it hard for me to sleep at night!

Stephen King & Berni Wrightson's Cycle of the Werewolf
My dad was a huge fan of Stephen King and anytime his books would come out, he would pick it up. The covers of the majority of these books were visually striking and I would look at them with wonder. Wondering what the story was about on the inside. I was still into books that contained lots of pictures in them, so a King novel with 300 pages of words didn't really interest me. Then my dad bought Cycle of the Werewolf!
This was a Stephen King book with freakin pictures! I did not have to wonder about what happened in this book because the beautifully horrific pictures by Wrightson told me all the gory details I needed to know. These pictures were terrifying to me. Never before had I seen so much horror in one image. It really stuck with me, but I never actually read the book. It is now on my must read list!

FLEER Grossville High Cards
These cards didn't really scare as much as gross me out as a kid. I really liked Garbage Pail Kids and collected the hell out of them when I was younger, but for some reason the grotesque artwork on these FLEER produced cards really creeped me out. I remember putting these stickers onto some of the things around mine and my brothers room when we got them just like we did with our GPK collection. Then one night I was tired of looking at them and got out of bed specifically to tear them off our stuff. I mean, these cards are no worse than GPK but the artwork just seems a little too out there for me. Check em' out for yourself and be the judge.
Pretty crazy right? Now when I look back at them they aren't really that terrible, but things look a lot different when you're 8 years old! There is a reason though, why Garbage Pail Kids are seen as great nostalgia and no one really remembers Grossville High.

The Taxi Driver Ghost from Ghostbusters
Iloved the Ghostbusters movie when it came out, but there was always one scene that made me close my eyes. That scene was with the Taxi Driver Ghost! For some reason, none of the other supernatural beings in this classic movie scared me at all. The drooling, snarling, sharp toothed terror dogs? Nope! The crazy, floating, purple Library Ghost? Nope! The freakin' taxi driver ghost that is on screen for about one second? YUP! 

The Sea Snakes from Majora's Mask
This game came out in 2000. I was still a teenager and had played survival horror games like Resident Evil, Parasite Eve and Silent Hill by this time with no problems at all. I even enjoyed them, but there was something about these giant, glowing eyed sea snakes from Majora's Mask that gave me the chills. Maybe it is the dark underwater setting or maybe it's the way they jump out at you. Whatever it was it kept me from completing this classic entry in the Legend of Zelda library.
 We all have differing opinions on what is scary, creepy or even terrifying. So, what kind of things scared you as a kid? Let me know in the comments below. And if you want some more creepy Halloween content, check out this post I wrote about a few more things that kept me from sleeping at night including Freddy, Aliens and that damn Tarman!

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Comic Book Pick 10/17/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
SIMPSONS COMICS #245
It's a Simpsons Comics send off! Join Bongo for the final issue of Simpsons Comics in a series finale that's been 25 years in the making! When Lisa brings home a lovable new pet from All Creatures Great and Small and Cheap, it seems like the perfect gift. But this new addition to the family turns out to be much more than anyone could have expected, and soon Springfield itself is in danger. Only one person can save the town from total disaster, but they're too busy taking a nap! It's a tale of twists, turns, irradiated missteps, and surprise cameos that will have your head spinning, bosom heaving, and wallet screaming to be emptied! A heartfelt series farewell from your pals at Bongo. We hate to say goodbye, so let's just leave it at "Smell ya later!"
(W) Nathan Kane (A) Rex Lindsey (CA) Jason Ho, Nathan Kane
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis Provided By: PreviewsWorld.com

Monday, October 15, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 10/15/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Hockey Mask, cut your hair in the fresh Psycho style and slip on your knife fingered glove as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the Halloween Edition of the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: Rockwell
Song: Somebody's Watching Me
Album: Somebody's Watching Me (Released 1984)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: 2
Bonus Fun Fact: Rockwell is the son of Motown Records legend Berry Gordy. Michael & Jermaine Jackson provide background vocals on this hit song!

Friday, October 12, 2018

Halloween Movie Recap 2018: Part 1

Every October me and my wife hold a "Scary Movie Marathon". This year is no different. We try to pick a new movie or show each day that gets us ready for the Halloween season. This year the majority of movies we watched were on Netflix. Here is a short list of some of the films we watched and what I thought of them. Please don't be upset if I didn't like something you liked, we all have our own opinions and tastes in horror movie cinema.

The Boy (2016)
The Boy is the story of a Montanan named Greta who is looking to escape her abusive past by taking a nanny job in England. Upon her arrival at the house, she discovers that she will be watching over a doll by the name of Brahms. She needs to dress him, feed him and teach him. It all seems weird, but she takes the job and strange things begin to happen around the house and they all link back to the inanimate doll of Brahms. She finds out that Brahms died years ago and begins to believe the doll is a vessel for the spirit of the boy. Up to this point I was with this film. It was a little slow, but I wanted to see the payoff. Unfortunately the twist the makers of the film tried to surprise us with at the end of the movie did not pay off once the doll is smashed by Greta's former lover. It felt sloppy and lazy to me. This movie really did have a decent premise, and had a few scares in it, but ultimately it did not satisfy. I would skip this one.

Oculus (2013)
Once the credits began to roll in the intro to the film, I should have known what I was in for. One of the production companies for the film was WWE Studios. Yes the same studios that bring us Monday Night Raw is now in the business of making horror movies. To theirs and the other producers credit though, this was not a terrible movie. In short, two siblings find a mirror that they believed was the cause of their parents going crazy and killing each other. They want this mirror so they can prove their parents weren't crazy psychos, but victims of the mirrors powers. The siblings set up cameras, traps, etc to record their findings. In the end though their exposure to the mirror causes them some problems. The acting was pretty good. The cast Karen Gillan (Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, Guardians of the Galaxy) and Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica). The writing was okay and the visual effects were solid. I wouldn't say this was a great movie, but maybe once you get to the end of your Halloween movie viewing, maybe give this one a chance.

The Vault (2017)
Let me start off by saying, I had no idea this movie was a supernatural thriller! Everytime I would scroll by it on Netflix all I would see was an image of Mr. James Franco and his amazing mustache. I knew it was a bank robbery heist film, but didn't know it included hauntings and paranormal twists. Needless to say, I was very pleasantly surprised by this flick! A family of bank robbers decides to knock off  a local bank to pay off their debts, but man did they pick the wrong place. When they find the main vault only has a few thousand dollars in it, a bank employee tells them of another vault in the basement that contains millions. He didn't tell them though that this vault was the scene of a brutal robbery in the 80s! The robbers attempt to get the loot, but they each ultimately end up becoming victims to the paranormal specters that roam the old vault. The twist at the end caught me off guard and there was just enough scares and gore to keep me satisfied as a horror movie viewer. I definitely recommend this one for your holiday viewing! 

 Friday The 13th (1980)
Do I really need to explain why this movie made my list of films to watch during Halloween? I have seen Friday The 13th a million times since I was a kid and it still does the trick for me every Halloween. Plus, as I've mentioned a hundred times on this blog already...I grew up in the town where parts of the movie were filmed, so it gives me a little glimpse of my home. If you have not seen this slasher/horror classic yet, do it! 

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Comic Book Pick 10/10/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
SPIDER-GEDDON #1
REVENGE OF THE SPIDER-VERSE!
Back in 2014, SPIDER-VERSE brought every Spider-Man ever together. This event spinning out of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #800 has Christos Gage and Dan Slott teaming up to destroy them all. The Inheritors have somehow gotten out of their radioactive prison planet and made their way to the Marvel Universe. It's going to take a whole Spider-Army to keep them from TAKING IT ALL! Starring Spider-Man, Doctor Octopus, Spider-Gwen, Miles Morales, Spider-Woman, the Spider-Man from the anticipated video game and, well, every Spider-Man and Spider-Woman ever, including some brand-new ones! With Jorge Molina on art, the END OF ALL SPIDERS never looked so good!
(W) Christos Gage, Dan Slott (A/CA) Jorge Molina
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis Provided By: PreviewsWorld.com

Monday, October 8, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 10/8/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Hockey Mask, cut your hair in the fresh Psycho style and slip on your knife fingered glove as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the Halloween Edition of the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
Song: Then She Bit Me
Album: And In This Corner (Released 1989)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: N/A
Bonus Fun Fact: This song contains references to Nintendo, Shaft, Twilight Zone and Chucky from Child's Play!

Friday, October 5, 2018

My 2010 Interview With Rob Zombie


Back in 2010 Rob Zombie and Alice Cooper rode into town for their "Gruesome Twosome" tour. I had set up a chance for our news team to conduct an interview with Rob Zombie, but at the last minute we had breaking news and no one could meet with him. Not wanting to lose this opportunity or any future opportunities for interviews with the concert promoter, I grabbed a photog and we went to the arena to interview Rob Zombie. He was a very nice guy and I am glad I was granted this opportunity to sit down and chat with Rob Zombie before his performance with Alice Cooper that night. Below are a few excerpts from this interview:

Question: In 1996 you recorded "Hands of Death" with Alice Cooper for an X-Files compilation album. Did that kick off you musical relationship?
Rob Zombie: Before that I had met [Alice Cooper] in '94. I presented an award to him and then I believe in '95 he came on stage one time and played with us, with White Zombie. That's when we first did anything.

Question: You've toured with Ozzy Osbourne and now Alice Cooper, which has been the wildest for you?
Rob Zombie: Alice is everything to me. I like Ozzy, but Alice was the person I grew up loving and he set the standard for live shows. So, I think that I would give Alice everything over Ozzy on that front. Everything about him is the best.

Question: Did Alice get you to golf yet?
Rob Zombie: No, Alice goes golfing all the time, but I don't go with him 'cause I don't golf. You know? I'm not gonna go there and goof around.
Question: What can we expect from the Gruesome Twosome?
Rob Zombie: We've decided in a very humble manor that this will be the greatest rock and roll show you will ever see! EVER! And if you think you'll ever see a better one, you are sadly mistaken.
After the interview Rob Zombie gave me a signed picture and then went on his way to prepare for the show. I brought a few friends to the Gruesome Twosome tour that night and Rob Zombie and Alice Cooper really did put on an amazing show! If you ever get the chance to see these guys perform, go for it! It's not even my type of music, but I could appreciate the show they put on for their fans. It really is worth the price of admission. Here is a clip from the interview where Zombie talks about his Halloween movies and why he enjoys making comics, enjoy!

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Comic Book Pick 10/3/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
BATMAN/THE MAXX #1 (OF 5)
Batman must face the strangest and most bizarre adventure of his career, as he meets comics' strangest and most bizarre hero... THE MAXX! IDW and DC Comics proudly present the most surreal, quirky, and wonderful crossover of all time! A devious new doctor at Arkham Asylum is conducting unconventional experiments into the human psyche, and he kicks off a chain reaction of disaster when he experiments on Arkham's newest patient, The Maxx! The city of Gotham is starting to merge with The Maxx's psychedelic mental landscape, known as the Outback, blurring the line between real and unreal. It's up to Batman to save not just Gotham, but all of reality, and he and The Maxx are going to have to travel through some of the darkest places imaginable-the twisted minds of Batman's greatest enemies! Join Batman and The Maxx on an off-kilter and unforgettable romp through the diabolical consciousnesses of Batman's greatest foes. Legendary artist Sam Kieth (Sandman, Wolverine) returns to his greatest creation, The Maxx, and returns to Gotham as well, assisted by multi-Eisner Award-winning writer John Layman (Detective, Chew). First new The Maxx story in more than a decade!
(W) Sam Keith (A/CA) Sam Kieth
SRP: $4.99
Synopsis Provided By: PreviewsWorld.com

Monday, October 1, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 10/1/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Hockey Mask, cut your hair in the fresh Psycho style and slip on your knife fingered glove as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the Halloween Edition of the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: The Fat Boys
Song: Are You Ready For Freddy
Album: Coming Back Hard Again (Released 1988)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: N/A
Bonus Fun Fact: Robert Englund raps as Freddy Krueger on this cut! This song was the theme song for A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master!

Friday, September 28, 2018

Are you ready for some football...cards!

The NFL season is off and running and as a New York Jets fan I gotta say, I was full of optimism for this year. Now we are in week 3 of the season and I have already checked out. Hopefully the Jets can turn this thing around and start racking up some Ws? But until that happens I'm going to reminisce on the good ol' days when football players were more than just marketing tools, they were tough and beat the snot out of each other without the yellow flags being thrown! These days were the late 80s & early 90s! Let's take a trip down memory lane and tear into some vintage NFL trading cards, shall we?
Action Packed 1989
Oh my gosh! These cards were amazing! They were embossed and had gold foil graphics. Action Packed was a real game changer when they came out, but they were unable to hold their appeal with collectors. I remember trading for these cards with my friends mostly for the Jets cards, but definately because of their cool factor!

Score 1990
In the 80s & 90s Score and Topps were the go to cards for me. They seemed to be the most affordable and you got a decent product. These cards from 1990 were totally a victim of their time. I say victim, but I really do like the bold colors and almost full card photos in this set. They also had some great subsets and some of the best rookie cards of the year.

Fleer Ultra 1991
Ah, Fleer Ultra. The premium card set. 1991 was early on in the Fleer Ultra brand and they really hadn't hit their stride yet. It would be another year or so until Ultra would include the UV coating and foil embossing that I loved so much. Overall this is not a bad set, just sort of plain.

Pacific Plus 1991
Pacific was always an afterthought in my collecting experience. Yeah, we had the cards but no one avidly collected them. I mostly picked up these cards so I could grab another cardboard version of my favorite player...Bo Jackson. This is a clean looking set, but it just didn't have the clout in the market as some of the bigger card producers.

Ted Williams 1994
I didn't even know this card set existed until a year or so ago when I found packs at an antique store for 75 cents each! This is a nice looking set filled with NFL greats of the past and some from the present. There were some nice subsets included and you did get a bonus POG card in each pack! As a side note, I never knew "Anti Counterfeit Ink" was needed to produce a football card set?

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Comic Book Pick: 9/26/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
STRANGER THINGS #1
The nostalgia igniting hit Netflix original series comes to comic shelves. Follow Will Byers into a dimension of decay and destruction where he must use his wits and resolve to dodge the pursuit of the Demogorgon and escape the Upside Down. Written by award winning comics veteran Jody Houser (Faith, Orphan Black, Mother Panic). Based on Will's unseen journey during season 1 of hit Netflix show Stranger Things.
(W) Jody Houser (A) Stefano Martino (CA) Aleksi Briclot
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com 
 

Monday, September 24, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 9/24/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Naughty Gear cut your hair in the fresh Braided style and slip on your Adidas as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: Naughty By Nature
Song: O.P.P.
Album: Naughty By Nature (Released 1991)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: 6
Bonus Fun Fact: O.P.P. by this NJ based trio has been listed as one of the greatest hip-hop songs of all time by Rolling Stone, VH1, Spin Magazine and The Source!

Friday, September 21, 2018

In Search of The Goonies Novelization

Every once in a while I like to challenge myself to find a piece of my childhood that will bring back great memories of my amazing childhood. This time around I have found myself on a quest to find and purchase the novelization of my favorite movie of all time...The Goonies! This book search didn't happen just out of the blue, but thanks to some of the guys I follow on Twitter like Shawn Robare of Branded in the 80s fame. I've read some of these adaptations of movies and sometimes they contain altered events and deleted scenes that never made it into the movie. I am hoping this is the case with The Goonies. So I searched online...
but the prices were a little out of my range. After that didn't go as planned I ran another search, this time for used bookstores in my neighborhood. I found 3 of them in the area! It looks like I am now on my own Goonie adventure, but instead of looking for rich stuff I was hoping to uncover a wealth of  fantastic fiction. I have journeyed to 2 of the bookstores so far, but no Goonies novels were to be found. Instead I picked up some other great literary works of art based on a few awesome characters that were popular back in the day. Here is what I scored for under $5!

Alf: Mission To Mars (Checkerboard Press, 1987)

Heathcliff: In Outer Space (Marvel Books, 1985)

My Pet Monster: Goes To School (Western Publishing, 1986)

Pound Puppies: Problem Puppies (Western Publishing, 1986)

Roger Rabbit: Make The World Laugh (Western Publishing, 1988)

TMNT: The Storybook Based On The Movie (Random House, 1990)

Not a bad haul overall. At least I found something to bring home and read to my kids before they head off to bed for the night. But it wasn't what I was looking for, it wasn't The Goonies. Well, I still have one more shop to check for my paperback white whale! Wish me luck and pray I don't end up like Chester Copperpot!

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Comic Book Pick: 9/19/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
DICK TRACY DEAD OR ALIVE #1 (OF 4)
IDW Publishing proudly presents the rebirth of one the most iconic comic-strip heroes of all time, Dick Tracy! The All-American detective just made the biggest collar of his career, and it only cost him his job! But now the honest cop has packed his bags for "the city by the lake," and its criminals better watch out! Reimagined for the 21st century through a retro lens by the superstar team of Michael Allred, Lee Allred, Rich Tommaso and Laura Allred, Dick Tracy: Dead or Alive is a lock to be the pop-art event of 2018! Bizarre villains! Crooked cops! Gunfights galore! Cover art and co-written by Eisner Award-winning superstar Michael Allred (Madman, iZombie, Silver Surfer, Batman '66)! Illustrated by Rich Tommaso (Spy Seal, Dry County) with Michael Allred inks! Each issue features a "mug shot" alternate cover by Rich Tommaso! Ask your retailer about the "coloring book" variant cover by Michael Allred! Ask your retailer about the ultra-rare Mike Oeming variant cover!
(W) Lee Allred, Michael Allred (A) Rich Tommaso (A/CA) Michael Allred
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com 

Monday, September 17, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 9/17/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your leather jacket, cut your hair in the fresh Caesar style and slip on your Adidas as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: Grandmaster Flash
Song: White Lines (Don't Do It)
Album: White Lines (Don't Do It) 12-inch single (Released 1983)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: N/A
Bonus Fun Fact: The unofficial video for this song was directed by Spike Lee during his time as a student at NYU and features Laurence Fishburne! Duran Duran covered this song in 1995 on their "Thank You" album!

Friday, September 14, 2018

Centipede: The Board Game!

I have a great fondness for the video game Centipede. Back in the 80s you could find that arcade cabinet everywhere from Pizza Hut to our local dentist! Yes, our local dentist had arcade games in his waiting room. It actually gave us a reason to want to go for a cleaning. I loved playing Centipede and I still do. If an arcade has this game powered up, I'll be there flinging that track ball all over the place in the quest to put my initials in the top score listing. I am very familiar with this game, but recently while on the hunt for retro gold at the local Goodwill store, I found something that I never knew existed...
Centipede: The Board Game released by Milton Bradley in 1983. For only $2 I picked it up. I was so excited when I found the game that I didn't even bother to check and make sure the pieces were inside. I still would have grabbed it even if it was missing a majority of the pieces for the box art alone! It is pure 80s magic! Well, I got the game home and it sat around for a while until my son asked if we could play it. I obliged and we cut the tape and opened the box.
I was very happy to see that we were only missing 3 pieces from the game! A scorpion token, a mushroom token and one of the permanent board mushrooms were missing. These missing pieces were not enough to keep us from being able to play the game. The premise is pretty simple, you spin the wheel and try to make it home before your opponent does. What makes this game fun is that you get to blast the other centipede causing it to loose a segment of it's body.
That right there is the face of horror! We played the game a few times and my son beat me twice by repeatedly popping lasers into my centipede's face, which causes you to not be able to move. They only way to gain back your mobility is to blast the opposing, which then lets you return one of your centipede's body segments. Well, the luck of the game spinner was not with me and baby boy was able to scurry to a victory! It really is a fun game. I am sure we will play again soon so I can avenge my loss! 
Who knew a board game based on a video game could be so cool? When I was a kid we had the Ms. Pac-Man board game and that was not a great game. Mostly we just played with the character pieces from the game and made up our own rules. Centipede on the other hand has real re-play value and I'm glad I could enjoy this bit of nostalgia with my kids.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Comic Book Pick: 9/12/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
LEGEND OF ZELDA TWILIGHT PRINCESS VOL 04
Link and Midna head for Death Mountain to dispel the darkness that is plaguing the Gorons and hopefully obtain another shard of the Shadow Crystal. If they can recover the shard they'll only need to find one more piece of the Crystal. But their journey is far from over-shadows are gathering at Hyrule Castle and there are still many grave dangers and terrible foes to face!
(W) Akira Himekawa (A/CA) Akira Himekawa
SRP: $9.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Monday, September 10, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 9/10/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Kangol, cut your hair in the fresh Caesar style and slip on your FUBU clothing as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: Black Sheep
Song: The Choice Is Yours
Album: A Wolf In Sheep's Clothing (Released 1991)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: 57
Bonus Fun Fact: This song was ranked #73 on VH1's top 100 Greatest Hip-Hop songs list. It was most recently featured in a 2016 AirHeads candy commercial campaign.!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Comic Book Pick: 9/5/18

This week the comic book I am most excited to read is...
GHOSTBUSTERS CROSSING OVER #6
The Ghostbusters need every missing ghost back to properly recalibrate their rapidly malfunctioning containment unit, and so far, they've recaptured them all! But this time, something stands in their way-and his name is Louis Tully! The Ghostbusters mega crossover event continues here!
(W) Erik Burnham (A/CA) Dan Schoening
SRP: $3.99
Synopsis provided by PreviewsWorld.com

Monday, September 3, 2018

Throwback Jam of the Week: 9/3/18

It's that time of the week again here at 20 Years Before 2000...It's time for the THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK! These are the jams currently on my trusty Creative ZEN MP3 player and they encompass everything from Motown R&B classics to hip-hop and rap from the 90s! I would like to share them with you in the hopes that they can get you on your feet and bring back some sweet nostalgic memories! So throw on your Kangol, cut your hair in the fresh Caesar style and slip on your FUBU clothing as we take you back! Without further ado, here is the 20 Years Before 2000 THROWBACK JAM OF THE WEEK...
Artist: L.L. Cool J
Song: Mamma Said Knock You Out
Album: Mamma Said Knock You Out (Released 1991)
Peak Billboard Hot 100 Position: 17
Bonus Fun Fact: This song was inspired by a conversation LL had with his grandma when she told him to, "Oh baby, just knock them out!". Won the Grammy for "Best Rap Solo Performance" in 1992!

Friday, August 31, 2018

In Defense of Street Fighter: The Movie

This week I was able to borrow a copy of Street Fighter: The Movie from a friend at work. It had been decades since I had seen this movie and I remember liking it. Again that was in 1994 and I was all of 13 years old, so my perspective may be skewed. Recently I watched the Mortal Kombat movie on Netflix and was pretty underwhelmed at that flick. I also remember seeing that movie in the theaters and liking it. This gave me little hope that I would enjoy a rewatch of the Van Damme action packed classic.
But guess what? I actually did enjoy rediscovering this much maligned video game adaptation. It's actually a pretty decent action flick, if you know what you're getting into. Yes it is cheesy, yes the acting is iffy, but here are a few reasons why I had fun watching Street Fighter: The Movie!

1. The action sequences were surprisingly well done!
With a movie based on a fighting game you would expect it to be full of great action sequences...and it is! The fights between Vega/Sagat & Ken/Ryu and the final fight between Guile & Bison are just a few of the cool sequences in this flick. In addition to a  huge smattering of fighting the movie balanced some comedy in there to make it a fun journey through Shadaloo in the name of freedom!

2. Raul Julia is fantastic as a villain
The dialogue Julia spits out is absolutely insane and the facial expressions he exudes could only have been done by him. Some of the casting in this flick are suspect, but the crew really nailed it when they hired Raul for his last performance before he passed. The above clip where Chun Li pours her heart out over her deceased father is played off wickedly by Julia as he responds with the best FREAKIN BRILLIANT line in the entire film. "For you, the day Bison graced your village was the most important day of your life. But for me, it was Tuesday."

3. The Characters were made to look like their counterparts
Most people gripe that the characters in movies based on beloved franchises never really look like the source material (ex. Masters of the Universe). But the people who worked on Street Fighter: The Movie did their due diligence and had each character look as close to the game version as possible without being too over the top. The one exception would be Dhalsim, he looks nothing like he did in the game, but in the movie makers defense it would be pretty hard to pull off the look of a skinny, bald yogi who shoots fire from his face back in '94! Also, I give them credit for trying to make Blanka look imposing, but he comes off looking like a demented Battle Trolls doll!

4. It gave us this absurdly awesome music video!
The soundtrack to Street Fighter: The Movie by Priority Records had some big names on it including Ice Cube, NAS, LL Cool J and The Pharcyde. None of their songs got music videos, but this tight collaboration between MC Hammer & Dion Sanders did and it is magnificent! The video for "Straight To My Feet" features cameos by many of the actors in the film, most notable are the scenes where Jean-Claude Van Damme himself dances alongside Hammer! Great stuff in here! The album sold over 500,000 units and topped out at #135 on the Billboard 200 list.

5. It left me wanting more!
After the destruction of Bison's headquarters the good guys celebrate...maybe a little too soon! In a post credits scene I just found out about, the hand of Bison pushes through the rubble and rises triumphantly to set his computer back to "World Domination" mode! What had me excited was the blue glow coming from Bison. This reminded me of his special moves in the game where his fists would glow before landing in an unsuspecting opponents face. Could he have been doused by some of the chemicals and gained super-natural powers? Director Steven deSouza said he left out these elements in the first movie, but was open to exploring them in the sequel. Maybe if the movie had made more money ($33,423,521 domestic total), we would have had a super powered sequel? I guess, sadly, we will never know! All we can do is play out these "What If?" scenarios in the Street Fighter: The Movie video game by Capcom.