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Life Over a PokéStop

I live over a pizza joint. A semi-famous one that's more expensive than dollar pizza and too milky for my blood, but you get the idea. Also one usually hopping at 2am on a Saturday night for obvious reasons.   Anyway, this pizza joint is also now a Pokéstop. Which is preeeetty great 'cuz I can get a steady stream of Pokéballs.   But.   And this is the magical part.   Everyday, at some time at night, someone decides to put a Lure there. Now, Manhattan is full of Lures at night (must be when the P

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Final Exam: The Hobbit

Essays, Not Rants! 039: Final Exam: The Hobbit   It’s finals time at NYU. Folks are churning out essays and cramming a semester of information in their heads. So here I’ll be doing something different (but not really): let’s look at The Hobbit.   I saw The Hobbit’s midnight showing at the IMAX here. It was good, clearly. Perfect, nah, not quite. Not Return of the King, but then what is? So where’d The Hobbit go right and where’d it go wrong?’   Right off the bat, it’s a great adaption. It went r

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Tahu and Pohatu — In The Plastic (Kinda)

There was a moment tonight, at the Lego Store Event, when the Bionicle folks said "anything you build tonight you can take home." Deevee's face lit up and all of us made a mad dash for the pieces bin. Some people built part hogs (I have never seen so many ball joints on a technic axle before), some built multi-armed multi-weaponed multi-headed beings, I... well, I did this:     I even added gear functionality!   I wasn't near the actual sets, hence some of the not-rightness in comparison to the

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Hurricane Sandy: Seeking Civilization

Day 4. Most of the residents of the building fled yesterday when the generator ran out of gas. Emergency power is back now, but the building is deserted. We survivors have found power and plumbing in the deserted floors beneath us. This is a luxury. Once more we are setting out in search of food and potential entertainment in the mysterious land known as 'Uptown'. Weather remains chilly, no sign of wolves.   I'm really in survival mode now. My backpack has my laptop, a surge protector, and cha

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The Prequels Aren't So Bad

Essays, Not Rants! 013: The Prequels Aren’t So Bad   One of the most controversial series of films released within the past twenty years is the Star Wars Prequel Trilogy. In all seriousness, the Star Wars prequels do get a lot of flak for not living up to the precedence of the Holy Trilogy. But I'm here to say they're not the travesty of film that a lot of us make them out to be.   By no means am I saying they're flawless. I grew up with Star Wars and can't recall a time in my life where I didn

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NYCC, Firefly, and TMD as Nathan Drake

Well. That was awesome.   The Lego booth (floor area, more like it) was pretty cool. Saw the new Batman and Spiderman sets. Got a pretty neat Hobbit poster too. They were also building a mosaic of the turtles:   Went to a couple panels about stories, that was cool. Saw some Assassin's Creed III gameplay, got an inflatable tomahawk and a pretty epic exclusive shirt. Played a bunch of Play Station All Stars (as Drake, duh). Game's fun. Very different from Smash Bros, I'll probably buy it, budge

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The Beauty of Pokémon Go

Essays, Not Rants! 227: The Beauty of Pokémon Go   A recent issue of TIME Magazine (a magazine I usually like) ran a small article about Pokémon Go. In an article describing how the game “shows the unnerving future of augmenting reality,” writer Matt Vella describes players in Prospect Park as “a dozen people shuffling about haphazardly, their zombie eyes fixed on glowing phone screens.”   Okay. Fine.   Honestly, I shouldn’t be too surprised. This is the same publication that ran a cover articl

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The Avengers > The Dark Knight Rises

Essays, Not Rants! 020: The Avengers > The Dark Knight Rises   You read that title right: The Avengers was better than The Dark Knight Rises.   Man. Always fun to stir up some controversy.   Why do I think this? So glad you asked.   But let me preface all this with something: I’ve loved Batman for as far back as I can remember. I loved The Dark Knight, heck, it was one of the first movies I added to my BluRay collection. I’m not some Batman hater championing The Avengers because it’s not Batm

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Brickeens Appreciation Post

Because once upon a time the kid visited a ship when it was berthed in Ireland. And that ship, though it was not my ship, was the successor to my ship. By the transitive property of ships, that makes him cool. Real cool.   He's also a neat guy who does a good job of living life and not dying. Which, really, is harder than it sounds. Take it from me.   And because he posts entries like this.   *raises glass*

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A Series of Arcs

Essays, Not Rants! 025: A Series of Arcs   I decided to sit down and watch some old How I Met Your Mother episodes once, and by old I mean Season One. It was weird to watch since everyone was well, so different from where they are in the more recent seasons. It’s jarring in light of where they end up.   This, of course, is one of the great things about TV shows: character development. When you have a couple dozen episodes per season you can spend a lot more time with the protagonists and working

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Why I Take Issue With Johnny Storm Being Black

Essays, Not Rants! 176: Why I Take Issue With Johnny Storm Being Black   So y’know that new Fantastic Four movie coming out next week? It caused a bit of uproar when casting was announced since Michael B. Jordan’s playing Johnny Storm, a character who, in the comics, has been white. This is further complicated by the fact that his sister, Susan Storm, is being played by Kate Mara, who is rather obviously white.   This ‘race lift’ given to Johnny Storm has caused quite the hullabaloo. In an appa

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In Defense of Fan Fiction

Essays, Not Rants! 044: In Defense of Fan-Fiction   I’ve written my share of fan fiction. Be it about Star Wars, Bionicle adventures, or Mega Man stories; trust me: I’ve written my fanfics. Thing is, that was years ago. I’ve hardly done anything remotely fan fictiony (be it an animation or a piece of writing) in years.   I guess I grew out of it; I wanted to make my own worlds and not lean on someone else’s work as a basis. I wanted my stories to be mine and independent. Of course, I still read

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Why Abrams Is The Man For Star Wars

Essays, Not Rants! 046: Why Abrams Is The Man For Star Wars   A little more than a week ago it was officially announced that JJ Abrams would be directing the new Star Wars. Some people met this news with a measure of caution.   Myself? I think Abrams is the person to direct it.   L
ook at Mission: Impossible III. Abrams made his directorial debut with the sequel to this established series. He kept strongly to the themes and style of the original TV show (so I’m told). Not only was it considered

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Sorry Nate, There’s No Princess In This Castle

Essays, Not Rants! 159: Sorry Nate, There’s No Princess In This Castle   Let’s talk about damsels, because the idea of the damsel in distress goes way back and ‘cuz damseling female characters (especially in video games) kinda has to stop.   So what is a damsel in distress? Anita Sarkeesian succinctly describes it as This has been a staple of video games since very early on. In Super Mario Bros, Mario quests to save Princess Peach. This wasn’t necessarily bad, but it becomes a problem when the

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4th Annual TMD Music Awards

Here we are. Again. Finally. I've been busy.   Welcome To The 4th Annual TMD Music Awards!   Once again I find myself ranking ten albums from 2012 in order of bestness. As such there is not much need for an interlude, just that all ten of these albums are great albums you should check out.   Special EP Mention: Freaks EP, The Hawk In Paris These guys are amazing. And Birds on a Wire is one of my favorite songs of the year. Give the EP a listen, a full album will be out in 2013.   Top 10 Albums

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Jon Foreman Stole My Hat

Man. This is like culture shock, only on the internet. I've got a lot of sorting and stuff to do.   Bah. I'll do it later. In the meantime here's a blurry picture of Jon Foreman wearing my hat.  

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7709 Review - Sentai Fortress

"Is this the set you've been asking about this whole time?" "Yup"   And with that the ownership of the Sentai Fortress passed from Toys R Us to Tee Em Dee.     THE BOX The most superficial part of any LEGO product, but the one that often determines whether or not the set is a success or failure.   The box is pretty big, and slighty hard to carry, XD. The front features the shot we know and love, but the Silent Strike is furthur back, so Hikaru's aim is better. Opening the flap there's

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Man, Luke Cage is HOT.

This week's Essay, Not Rant isn't being mirrored on BZP 'cuz it discusses some of the more adult aspects of Jessica Jones. So instead I'll leave you with the following sentiment regarding the show which I'm pretty sure we can all agree on:   Hot dang, Luke Cage is HOT.  

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Too Many Characters, Too Little Time

Essays, Not Rants! 055: Too Many Characters, Too Little Time I started watching Game of Thrones with a couple friends of mine because everybody and their grandmother (actually, no, your grandmother wouldn’t watch Game of Thrones) have been telling us how good it is. And it is, but that’s not quite the point of this essay (that’s not a rant). One of the great things about Thrones is the incredible amount of characters. Seriously, this show gives Lost a run for its money. Unlike Lost, however, T

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Hurricane Sandy: We Are Legend

Day Five. Still waiting for power on our floor, but we're comfortable in our scavenging. The flights of stairs are slowly wearing on us. My ragtag band of survivors have decided to venture downtown. No sign of strange alien monsters   I took a warm shower this morning at the NYU gym near my dorm. And hey, I will take communal showers if it means warm water. One of my ragtag band of survivors was called home to Philly, so I walked her halfway to Penn Station (or at least to where there were wor

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The Problem With Play Station All-Stars Battle Royale

Essays, Not Rants! 048: The Problem With Play Station All-Stars Battle Royale   Yeah, I know, the game came out almost three months ago. I got it for free in a bundle a while back and have been debating selling or keeping it. I’d played Play Station All-Stars Battle Royale before and figured it was alright. The other night, some friends and I decided to finally open it up (negating resale value) and beat each other up.   Virtually, that is.   Now, way back in the Nintendo 64 days (mid-90’s, earl

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Doth Mother Know You Weareth Her Drapes?

Essays, Not Rants! 009: Doth Mother Know You Weareth Her Drapes?   Yes, another entry about The Avengers. I’m fully aware it came out two weeks ago and I should probably stop going to watch it every so often, but, well, no. The movie is, simply put, great. It sets a new standard for comic book/superhero movies and, more than that, proves that a movie of this nature can be of the same caliber and quality of those dainty arthouse dramas. ‘cause yes, the script is exceptional, acting top notch, and

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Movies/Stories About Being Biracial/Mixed

So I'm mixed. Dad's Singaporean Chinese, Mom's Norwegian America, I put Sino-Nordic on forms.   Growing up, there weren't many stories about what that's like (getting teased/bullied for being white/foreign in Singapore, then being teased/bullied for being Asian/foreign in the US) and the weird navigation of identity that comes with it that I'm only now really starting to explore.   Now, I'm curious, what stories are out there that deal with this? I'm interested in compiling a list (a cursory goo

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Genre Blending

Essays, Not Rants! 084: Genre Blending Originally posted October 25th 2013   Remember when superhero movies were just becoming a thing? They usually fell into the same pattern: someone gets powers and saves the world. Fairly straight forward, right? Sure, there were different approaches to the idea: X-Men drew on themes of discrimination and Spider-Man was about a hero trying to balance life and superheroing. The Dark Knight, Watchmen, and The Incredibles deconstructed several tropes associated

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