Friday, December 29, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 193 – Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi


Recorded LIVE in the Phantom Zone!

The Needless Things Irregulars are joined by special guest Chad J. Shonk for a lively roundtable discussion about the newest entry into the ever-growing Star Wars saga!


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Devlin's Domain - Delights and Angers: Best of 2017




2017 is coming to a close and as I suspected this time last year, we're all still here and everything's mostly fine. While many people spent the year setting their hair on fire over one bit of rubbish or another, I immersed myself in loads of entertainment as I waited for this whole thing to blow over. Looks like I'll be waiting a while, so I'll continue that practice through 2018 as well. On this edition of Devlin's Domain I'll be making my picks for my favorite releases in various categories. I spent a lot of the year catching up on older films that have been getting great bluray releases, so the past few weeks I've had to catch up on the new stuff. I missed a few things that I just wasn't able to get to before the year's end. I'll make a note of things I missed while running down my favorites just so you don't have to wonder why they didn't make the list.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Movie Review - The Disaster Artist

by Beth

Oh hai guys.

I have seen The Room in its entirety 3 times in my life. Some might argue that it’s 3 times more than anyone needs to see it, but those people probably saw it in the wrong place at the wrong time. The Room requires cocktails, friends, or a Rifftrax (and preferably all of those) to be enjoyed or appreciated. In the right context The Room is a beautiful mess that will make you laugh, cry, and question your sanity. I’m not obsessed with it like some people. I only paid to see it one time, and that was at the Rifftrax Live event. I will never go to a midnight showing, nor do I want to meet Tommy Wiseau (he just creeps me out). I did however really want to see The Disaster Artist.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 192 – Star Wars: A New Hope Needless Commentary


Part of an ongoing series – the Needless Things Irregulars gather in the Phantom Zone to provide their own unique commentary on classic genre films!


Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Phantom’s Christmas Favorites

By Dave


I love Christmas music.

I’m not a lunatic about it like Mick Foley where I listen to it all year, but songs about the Christmas season – and the holidays and winter in general – bring joy to my heart this time of year.


Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Toy Review – Santa Claus from Figures Toy Company

By Dave


I don’t think it will surprise anyone to learn that I absolutely love Santa Claus.

I value the Christian roots of the holiday and am a big fan of the Jesus story. Yes, I am aware of all of the pagan stuff and that’s great, but I don’t care. It’s not part of my fandom. But I’d be lying if I said that the Santa Claus idea wasn’t the most exciting part of Christmas for me.


Monday, December 18, 2017

Toy Stories – Episode VIII’s Top Eight

By Dave


WARNING: THIS MIGHT CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI

I still don’t know how I feel about The Last Jedi. At first I didn’t like it. The more I thought about it, the less I liked it. This upset me terribly because the last thing I ever want is to not like a Star Wars production. I certainly don’t want to hate one, and I seemed to be inching closer to that by the hour.

Then I started talking privately – because to speak ill of this movie in public is to invite unrelenting derision – to my friends about it. In conversations with maybe a dozen people I discovered that there was a fairly even divide between those that liked Rian Johnson’s version of Star Wars and those that didn’t.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 191 – A Very Gordon Christmas!


Our pal Mike Gordon joins the show to discuss the most wonderful time of the year!


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

It's the Least Wonderful Time of the Year

by Beth

 It’s one of those weeks where I don’t know what to write about. This happens sometimes. It isn’t really writers block, it’s just that nothing has jumped out at me lately as being something I need to talk to you guys about. It's mainly the fact that I work in retail, and it’s a very busy time of year for me. Not only am I physically exhausted, but my brain is pretty much fried. And not to make excuses, but it’s at least part of the reason that I don’t like Christmas as much as everyone else seems to. That does make me a little sad since I loved Christmas way back when. But then I don’t have any kids, and have never been a particularly festive kind of person.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Toy Review – National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation Retro Santa Clark Action Figure from NECA

By Dave


Some of the things I love the most are ones that I didn’t like at all at first – Big Trouble in Little China, Evil Dead, and Rad Ranger come to mind.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation also makes that list.


Friday, December 8, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 190 – Valerie Meiss


Dave talks to musician, illustrator, puppeteer, and all-around renaissance woman Valerie Meiss!


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Comic Book Wednesday – Previews December 2017: “Your Purple Friend”

By Dave


If you don’t know, Previews is the catalog that Diamond Comic Distributors use to offer the products they distribute to comic book stores around the country. This is where you can view and order (through your favorite Local Comic Book Shop) comic books, trade paperback collections, t-shirts, books, media, and toys and other collectibles from hundreds of different vendors that deal in geek-oriented merchandise. The genius part is that you actually have to pay for your copy of Previews for the privilege of ordering other things to pay for.

It’s like the Ren Fest except without the horse poo smell.

So every month a new edition of Previews is sent out to comic book stores. Contained in the pages within are products that might be currently available or could be released anytime in the next year; but are typically about two months away. Most of this month’s offerings are scheduled to ship in February.


Monday, December 4, 2017

The Twelve Albums of Christmas

By Dave


Every year from midnight after Thanksgiving until midnight on Christmas Day, the only music I listen to is of the Christmas variety.

I love Christmas. I love the story of Jesus. I love giving gifts. I love the colder weather, the decorations, the tree, the holiday specific foods like candy canes and gingerbread and egg nog, the lights, the TV specials, and of course the music.


Friday, December 1, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 189 – Boglins & Sectaurs with Timothy Clarke


LIVE from the Dragon Con 2017 Puppetry Track!

Dave – formerly and sometimes still known as Phantom Troublemaker – talks to the wonderful Tim Clarke about two of the legendary 80s toy lines he created – Boglins and Sectaurs!


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Holiday Movie Line-Up

by Beth

With the holidays well and truly upon us (I now give you leave to put up your Christmas decorations. Before Thanksgiving is just too damn soon) it's time for holiday movies to start hitting us upside the head. We've been seeing the previews for months in some cases, and eagerly awaiting the release of many of them. As with any blockbuster season, there's also some real garbage coming out. I'm here to help you sift through the crap, and decide how to spend your valuable time in December. This is by no means a complete list of everything coming out in December. I just went with the ones that I haven't stopped hearing about or seeing ads for.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Toy Review – Child’s Play Retro Chucky Action Figure from NECA

By Dave


I think Chucky should be right up there with Jason, Freddy, Leatherface, and all the rest in the pantheon of iconic slashers. To some folks he might be, but it’s only recently that merchandise has started to reflect that.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 188 – Justice League


The Needless Things Irregulars gather in the Phantom Zone to discuss the newest entry into the DC Comics movieverse, Justice League!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Toy Review – One:12 Collective Deadpool from Mezco

By Dave


Some people complain about the constantly shifting (retreating) release dates on Mezco’s One:12 Collective line of action figures.

I totally understand.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 187 – GI Joe: The Movie Needless Commentary


Part of an ongoing series – the Needless Things Irregulars gather in the Phantom Zone to provide their own unique commentary on classic genre films!


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Christina's Addiction To Essay Books: The Geek's Written Obsession

 By Christina


Hi.  My name is Christina.  And I’m addicted to essay books.

“Hi, Christina.”

Yup.  I am admitting it freely. I have an extreme and downright obsessive addiction to essay books.  The Buffy scholars have filled the world with them, every TV show and movie worth its salt has them.  I can’t get enough of this non-fiction delve into the psyche of characters, breakdown of episodes, and understanding of how certain tropes speak to a need for feminism, industrialism, or whatever “ism” that the writer is trying to describe.  Whether or not I agree with any view, I just can’t get enough of exploring them all.  So the question I imagine you are asking is this:   What is an essay book and what has she been babbling about for an entire paragraph?  

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Movie Review: Thor: Ragnarok

by Beth

I hope I don't get kicked out of geek club for this. I seem to be one of the few people who didn't unreservedly love Thor: Ragnarok, and I feel like I need to express some of my dissatisfaction. I liked it, but had far more problems with it than I had expected. If my friends who don't love superhero movies as much as I do liked it more than me than I feel that there's a problem that needs to be addressed. There are probably some spoilers here so read at your own risk.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Toy Review – Star Wars Toybox Kylo Ren from The Disney Store

By Dave


Since I’m still excited about Disney’s new line of Toybox action figures, today I’m going to take a look at Kylo Ren from the Star Wars branch!


Friday, November 10, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 186 – Kamikaze Zombie


Dave talks to Clint from Birmingham, Alabama horror punk/metal band Kamikaze Zombie!


Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Comic Book Wednesday – Previews November 2017: “Nubbinsvember”

By Dave


If you don’t know, Previews is the catalog that Diamond Comic Distributors use to offer the products they distribute to comic book stores around the country. This is where you can view and order (through your favorite Local Comic Book Shop) comic books, trade paperback collections, t-shirts, books, media, and toys and other collectibles from hundreds of different vendors that deal in geek-oriented merchandise. The genius part is that you actually have to pay for your copy of Previews for the privilege of ordering other things to pay for.

It’s like the Ren Fest except without the horse poo smell.

So every month a new edition of Previews is sent out to comic book stores. Contained in the pages within are products that might be currently available or could be released anytime in the next year; but are typically about two months away. Most of this month’s offerings are scheduled to ship in January.

Now it’s time to discuss a few of the weird and/or wonderful items offered in this month’s edition!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Toy Review – Star Wars Toybox Rey from The Disney Store

By Dave


I don’t do as many toy reviews as I used to because, quite frankly, when you’re creeping up on a decade of doing them it gets a little old. But from time to time I do still get excited about something and it’s usually an entirely new line like this one – Disney’s Toybox.

Monday, November 6, 2017

DragonCon Wrap Up Part 2: A LATE Finale



By Christina

Author’s note:  I apologize for the lateness in my DC conclusion.  A series of family tragedies delayed this piece being posted before our yearly 31 Days of Halloween coverage.  Truly sorry, but here is my DragonCon wrap-up finale.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 185 – A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors


Recorded LIVE at Dragon Con 2018!

The third entry in the Elm Street series set the tone for the future of the franchise, introducing a group of strong, unique kids that audiences would remember for decades, as well as upping the ante on the nightmare visuals and Freddy’s puns.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Devlin's Domain - 31 Days of Horror 2017



This year I decided to cram a bunch of horror movies in honor of the only holiday that I come close to caring about. I watched a movie a day for 31 days, counting down to Halloween. I expected this to be a simple task, but was surprised how difficult it was to carve out 2 hours a day for a horror movie. Some days were easy, but others were a real chore. I still got the job done though and have documented that endeavor with some mini reviews for each one. Hopefully this list will expose you to movies you may not have been aware of. Let's count down the 31 Days Of Horror...

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

31 Days of Halloween: The Halloween Movie Franchise

by Beth

As this post is going up on Halloween I figured I should make it good. Nothing is more Halloween-ie to me than the Halloween movies. Even if all of the sequels haven't been first rate it is one of the longest running horror film franchises, and deserves to be looked at for the sum of its parts. That being said, I thought it might be fun to look at each movie in the series individually. The original is one of my favorite movies of all time (and not just of horror movies either), and there's a lot of love behind my criticism of the rest. Okay - most of the rest. I know I've talked in the past about how much I love these movies, and the character of Michael Myers, but I've never gone this in-depth before. So join me on an extended trip to Haddonfield for the horror that is Halloween.

Monday, October 30, 2017

31 Days of Halloween - Spooky Toy Review – A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors Quarter Scale Freddy Krueger from NECA

By Dave

A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors isn’t just my favorite Nightmare movie, it’s one of my all-time favorite horror movies.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 184 – 31 Days of Halloween: Halloween III Needless Commentary


Part of an ongoing series – the Needless Things Irregulars gather in the Phantom Zone to provide their own unique commentary on classic genre films! October’s film was chosen via fan poll on the Needless Things Podcast Facebook Group!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

31 Days Of Halloween - Devlin's Domain - Thundercrack!



Halloween is rapidly approaching and I've been struggling with what film to cover in this edition of Devlin's Domain. I needed something unusual, something disturbing, something nobody would expect. Of course disturbing and unusual are always expected here, which made this an even more challenging task. After racking my brain and tossing around everything in my collection, I finally came across a film with a spooky vibe and a Halloween spirit. It's a film few have heard of and even fewer would likely want to watch. For this Halloween season I found....a porno.


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

31 Days of Halloween - Spooky Toy Review – My Pet Monster NYCC Exclusive Glow-in-the-Dark Variant from Creepy Co.

By Dave


If you don’t know, Creepy Co. is an online retailer that specializes in nostalgia. They produce t-shirts, pins, and all manner of licensed collectibles that pay tribute to the franchises and art styles of decades past.

Last year Creepy Co. celebrated the thirtieth anniversary of My Pet Monster – a plush representative of the golden age of 80s gross-out/monster toys – with a collection of apparel, soon to be followed by a vinyl designer toy.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

31 Days of Halloween: The Lasting Trauma of Horror Movies

by Beth

I'll go ahead and give Mr. Tibbs credit for this idea (he'll totally call me out publicly if I don't anyway). I was stumped over what to write about this week. I feel like I've said most of the things I've wanted to say about horror/Halloween already, and didn't want to write yet another movie review (though you will probably get one next week unless the little mister comes up with any more good ideas). I did watch the season premiere of The Walking Dead last night, but that didn't yield any ideas besides a further rant on how boring and predictable that show has become. Which in turn would make me boring and predictable. So rather than going off on what I now call The Speeching Dead (how many speeches did Rick make last night? 3? 4?) We're going to explore the actual phobias and fears that horror movies have left many of us with.

Monday, October 23, 2017

31 Days of Halloween: Zombie LARPing. Can YOU Survive the Apocalypse?

By Christina



Firefly is a great show.  An epic show.  One of my favorites, in all honesty.  Shepherd Book, played by Ron Glass (God rest him,) gave this quote in the episode “War Stories:”  “Did you ever read the works of Shan Yu?... He said, ‘Live with a man 40 years. Share his house, his meals. Speak on every subject. Then tie him up, and hold him over the volcano's edge. And on that day, you will finally meet the man.’"

Now, I don’t have anything in common with dictators or madmen.  Not that I am aware of, at any rate.  This quote, however, is a very true statement.  People can talk a lot of game, but until you put them through the ringer, you won’t know if they are made of the metal they claim to have been forged by or if they will turn into every scared and sniveling character that Rick Moranis ever played.  With the exception of the FBI dude in My Blue Heaven.  He was freaking scary-cool in that movie, people. 

Do you have a friend that you know is made of strong stuff and you want to see them in action?  Do you have a friend that you is talking a lot of smack and you want to put them in their place?  How do you “meet the man?”  These simple words:  Live-Action Zombie shoot-out.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 183 – 31 Days of Halloween: Corpsewood Manor


This special episode of the Needless Things Podcast presents the exploration of Corpsewood Manor, the site of murders that shocked Georgia in the early 1980s. Dave, Ryan Cadaver, and Rad Ranger traveled to Trion, Georgia to examine the once majestic ruins of the ill-fated paradise.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

31 Days of Halloween: Christina Reviews Betrayal at House on The Hill

By Christina


I’m a gamer that likes change.  I like being kept on my toes and like replay value in the form of an ever-changing platform.  It’s why I love Until Dawn (check my review here at Needless Things) because of not only the various endings, but the multiple ways you can get to the various endings.  It’s why I love Final Fantasy VII because the materia gives you the ability to customize weapons and magic in so many different ways.  It’s why I love games like Forbidden Desert  and Dead of Winter because you never know how the game (and game board) will shift and change and who will end up with you, either in your party or even surviving to the final roll of the dice.  I had heard of Betrayal at House on The Hill; I watched it played on Wil Wheaton’s Tabletop show and had various friends recommend it.  But we hadn’t gotten our hands on it until this year’s DragonCon when we snagged it from the CoolStuffInc booth in the America’s Mart.  This was probably the best purchase that we have made all year.

My game review for the Needless Things’ 31 days of Halloween is going to focus on this survival-horror masterpiece that never stays the same and makes sure that no one at the table knows who the betrayer is going to be.  Not even the betrayer themselves.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

31 Days of Halloween: The Frightening Michael Rooker

by Beth

Am I cheating by putting a Dragon Con interview here in the 31 Days of Halloween? Possibly, but not really. I mean it took forever to figure out how to get the audio to even the poor quality you'll hear, but I have been working on it for some time. I've ordered a new recorder/microphone for future use so we shouldn't have this problem next year. My web hosting site has file size limits (cause it's free) so I spent ages learning to use audacity to break it into two parts, and try to up the voice of the actor while turning down the voices of the reporters. You guys aren't here to listen to me after all.

Monday, October 16, 2017

31 Days of Halloween - Spooky Toy Review – Alien: Covenant Neomorph from NECA

By Dave


Maybe you liked Alien: Covenant. Maybe you didn’t.



Whatever your feelings about the movie, there’s no denying that there were some cool new creature designs and interpretations of one of the most well-known movie monsters of all time. I knew going in that NECA had the license and would be producing new toys. They were super-secretive about them, too. If they released images before the movie was actually released, it wasn’t by more than a week.


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

31 Days of Halloween: Death Note

by Beth

A new live action (and very Americanized) version of beloved anime Death Note has come to Netflix, and I'm watching it just in time for Halloween. Sure imdb lists it as action rather than horror, but take a look at the Japanese death demon that Willem Dafoe voices, and tell me that's not horror. Plus, literally hundreds of people are brutally murdered. A guy getting the top half of his head chopped off by a falling ladder is pretty damn horrifying.

Monday, October 9, 2017

31 Days of Halloween - Spooky Toy Review - The Nightmare Before Christmas Pumpkin King from Diamond Select Toys

By Dave


Skeleton Jack might catch you in the back
And scream like a banshee
Make you jump out of your skin
This is Halloween, everyone scream
Wont' ya please make way for a very special guy
Our man jack is King of the Pumpkin patch
Everyone hail to the Pumpkin King
This is Halloween, this is Halloween
Halloween! Halloween! Halloween! Halloween!
In this town we call home
Everyone hail to the pumpkin song

Friday, October 6, 2017

Needless Things Podcast 181 – 31 Days of Halloween: The Horror of Kane


LIVE from Dragon Con 2017, but the perfect way to kick off 31 Days of Halloween on the Needless Things Podcast, Dave talks to one of the most notable horror icons in the history of professional wrestling – the Big Red Machine, Kane!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Comic Book Wednesday – Previews October 2017: “Getting It In Before Christmas”

By Dave


It’s early in the month, but it is here that we must take a break from our spooky activities to see what Diamond Distribution’s terrifying tome has in store for the future…

If you don’t know, Previews is the catalog that Diamond Comic Distributors use to offer the products they distribute to comic book stores around the country. This is where you can view and order (through your favorite Local Comic Book Shop) comic books, trade paperback collections, t-shirts, books, media, and toys and other collectibles from hundreds of different vendors that deal in geek-oriented merchandise. The genius part is that you actually have to pay for your copy of Previews for the privilege of ordering other things to pay for.

It’s like the Ren Fest except without the horse poo smell.

So every month a new edition of Previews is sent out to comic book stores. Contained in the pages within are products that might be currently available or could be released anytime in the next year; but are typically about two months away. Most of this month’s offerings are scheduled to ship in December.

Now it’s time to discuss a few of the weird and/or wonderful items offered in this month’s edition!


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Dragon Con 2017: Casper Van Dien and Patrick Muldoon Interview

by Beth

Yeah, I know. It's 31 Days of Halloween time. I've still got these interviews to post though, and the last 2 are people who've been in horror movies (or TV shows) so I'm counting it. This next interview was with Casper Van Dien and Patrick Muldoon from Starship Troopers. They've both done SyFy channel horror movies too, and are even working on a new Werewolf movie together called Alpha Wolf. See, totally fits with the Halloween theme.

Monday, October 2, 2017

31 Days of Halloween - Spooky Toy Review – CALABRESE Dayglo Necros Figure


By Dave

You know a great way to celebrate the Halloween season?

Spooky rock n’ roll music.


Friday, September 29, 2017

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Comic Book Wednesday – Thinning the Herd

By Dave


It’s been too long since I sat down and looked at the pull list I have with my Local Comic Shop. I have a huge stack of unread comics at home, and part of that stack consists of books that I have lost interest in and am now buying out of habit. Like The Wicked + The Divine, which has meandered so badly that I don’t even know what’s going on. I probably have six unread issues at home, not including a one-shot that I couldn’t be bothered to read.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Dragon Con 2017: Steve Blum Interview

by Beth

You may not know Steve Blum by name, but if you've ever watched anime (or regular cartoons) or played a video game in the last 15 years then you know the voice. He's been in hundreds of video games, and I recognize his voice immediately now. DOOM, Halo, Bioshock, Dragon Age, Fallout, Mass Effect, Final Fantasy, WoW, KotOR, and too many others to name. If there's a video game franchise, Steve Blum has been part of it at some point. He holds a Guinness Book world record for the most prolific video game voice actor. He was at 261 in 2012 at the time he received this award, but a quick glance at his IMDB page shows he's blow that mark out of the water. Sometimes I'll be playing a video game, and pick his voice out of a group of NPC's that I'm walking past. I always turn around to find out which character he is in the bunch. I just prefer to give my in-game gold to a dwarf with a familiar voice is all. And to me there is no voice no more familiar than his.