Jun 19, 2019

Book Report - The Scooby-Doo Encyclopedia

Need something to pass the time on your next road trip to a spooky castle?

The Scooby-Doo Encyclopedia was released just last year and thanks to Reis O'Brien on Instagram, I know it exists! I also pretty much inst-ordered it after seeing his post. This book is packed with all kinds of Scooby-riffic stuff!

Let me start by saying I wouldn't call this an Encyclopedia. If you were to flip through it in the store, you'd see it's really more of a character guide. I know Scooby-Doo Character Guide doesn't quite roll off the tongue. Maybe Scooby-Doo Case Files? Do kids even know what an encyclopedia is?

It's broken down into several sections. Each of the gang and the Mystery Machine get their own entries. Then there's a few pages on family (including a Doo family tree!) and some notable friends/guest stars.

Then it gets into the really good stuff: the villains! The cover claims to contain every bad guy from the classic series. I'm no Scooby-phile so I can't verify that, but considering each of the 93 pages has multiple entries, I'm going to take their word for it.

Every once in awhile, one of the gang will pop up in a bubble to provide a tidbit related to the entry. Shaggy tells jokes, Velma provides case breaking clues, Daphne give facts, Fred talks about the location, and Scooby naturally talks about snacks.

For better or worse, the book also includes The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo. On one hand, you have Scarppy-Doo but on the other you have Vincent Van Ghoul who was voiced by Vincent Price. I can tolerate a lot of Scrappy-Doo if Vincent Price is involved!

If I had to nitpick the book, my one quibble (how often do you get to use that word?) with it would be that it doesn't give any reference to the episode in which the baddie appears. Yes, I know we live in the internet age and there's probably a Scooby-Doo Wiki that can get me the info but it would have been nice to have that info in the book.

That very minor thing aside, this is a really fun book for Scooby fans of all ages. While flipping through it I found plenty of classic favorite villains as well as quite a few that I didn't recognize, which is why I'd like it to have episode information. The last page even has a recipe for Scooby snacks!

You can pick up the Scooby-Doo Encyclopedia on Amazon for just $7!
Like, zoinks, that's totally worth it!

Jun 12, 2019

Order of the Thinned Veil 2019

After basically becoming obsessed with the Jackling figures from The Cryptocurium, I decided this year was the year to join the Order of the Thinned Veil.

The Order, or OTV, is a yearly membership for Halloween fiends to get tricks and treats all year long. There are three levels of membership, basically the more you pay, the more stuff you get. I went for the Trick or Treat level which is the mid-level option. That means I get one package now and one later in the year.

The first shipment is the first level, or Candy Corn membership. It arrives in a plain white box but as soon as you open it, it's all black an orange.

What's this black envelope with the pumpkin imprinted wax seal?

Why it's my official membership card signed by the weirdos behind the order, Jason McKittrick and Sam Heimer! No matter when you sign up for the Order, the membership is only good for that calendar year.

Let's unpack the box and see what goodies lie within...

In the top left is a welcome letter from Lisa Morton, who's written a few books on Halloween. Next to that is the Legend of Lantern Jack who is the basis for a lot of the art. Speaking of art, that print "Vessel Vassal" is by Sam Heimer who has some absolutely amazing Halloween/horror art. Just below this is the OTV 2019 Membership pin.

On the bottom row we have a small cloth bag with pumpkin seeds! Members are encouraged to plant them and participate in carving. Then is the Pumpkin Clown wall plaque. There's a great little legend that goes with it, you can read on the OTV page. And of course, candy corn!

While this is all wonderful, what really made me want to join this year were the extras. The first 25 people that signed up, got a couple of bonus items.

Another print from Sam Heimer, called "Harvest Bound" and a witch Jackling. I can't overstate my love for Jacklings so getting this great Halloween loot and an exclusive Jackling was a no brainer!

I love this little figure so much. All the Jacklings have that country/folk art look to them but this one is a little different. She almost seems a bit creepy to me because of all the little nicks and scratches (which you can't see well in the pics). This one really makes me imagine it would be something you'd find maybe on the floor in a barn or in the woods somewhere. The others all have personality, to me this one seems to have history.

I can't wait to get the next part of my membership which will include another wicked art print and a figure of Lantern Jack!

Please check out the sites of the people behind the Order
Sam Heimer 

Jun 1, 2019

Monthly Movie Recap - May 2019


Ash vs Evil Dead - Netflix finally got the last season and it was everything you'd expect. I'm a little disappointed at the way it ended because that is a setup I'd like to see turned into a new series!

The Umbrella Academy - Finished this up and it was fantastic! It really felt to me like X-Men by way of Watchmen. It's not a typical superhero type of comic story.

Game of Thrones - Thanks to a free 7 day trial of HBO I was able to catch the final season. I can see why people might not be happy with the way it ended but I was completely satisfied with the ending. Not many show finales do that for me.

Let's head to the big screen!

Clint Howard plays a bullied student at a military academy. I almost feel sorry for him with a last name like Coopersmith. He finds a Satanic text that he (get this) has to enter into his Apple PC to translate the Latin into English to get his revenge. Eventually things get crazy. It's a very slow build to the final 15-20 minutes and that's likely all you'll remember about the movie.

Rating: 4/10

I'm familiar enough with the original but by no means a hardcore fan (whatever that might look like) so I didn't really have any reservations revisiting the character. I was nicely surprised that it felt like a return to the classic Disney era. There's a fantastic bit of combined live action/animation and the songs, for the most part, are bouncy and catchy as heck.

Rating: 7/10

This is definitely an Art movie. One that I felt was a bit long and was a lot less on the horror than I was expecting. The look of it and the dancing were great but I think I would have been lost on some of the story had I not seen the original. I have to give props to Dakota Johnson and Tilda Swinton, they were both excellent.

Rating: 5/10

It's a nice change of pace from the usual zombie/infected flicks with grade school kids being the antagonists. Sure watching adults beat on flesh eating kids wears thin after awhile but it's a decent time. The cast is what makes it watchable.

Rating: 6/10

Better than what I was expecting. It was good to finally see how it all started. The main character may be ex-military but his bad ass-ness takes this Purge more into action hero territory than it should for me. Worth a look if you're a fan of the series.

Rating: 5/10

I really enjoyed the first one and was interested to see what a sequel would bring. This one switches gears from horror/slasher to more of a scifi vibe. A killer is still on the loose but the story focuses more on the time loop aspect and something else I don't want to spoil. If you liked the first one, I highly recommend this one too!

Rating: 7/10

New: Rewatch: 0

Year to Date
New: 33  Rewatch: 2