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Opening this weekend is that other comic book-themed movie, PUNISHER: WAR ZONE. The movie stars Ray Stevenson as violent, vengeful Frank Castle. We hear it’s very, very violent and vengeful, in a kidney-ripping, kidney-chomping, chair leg-through-the-eyeball kinda way. Fun, fun. Somehow we managed to miss a screening, so here’s Tom McLean’s review at Bags and Boards:
The first thing this movie does right is cast Ray Stevenson as Frank Castle. Not only does Stevenson look and sound the part, but in the action sequences he moves with the confidence, poise and apparent skill that an ex-Marine like Castle would have. And that makes a big difference, compared to the goofy and limited fights of the previous Punisher movies. He also has the right touch in the story scenes. Castle’s never been much of a talker, but Stevenson for the first time on screen really evokes the character’s smoldering rage and seeming genius for dealing out death.
And Marvel has, cunningly, decided the way to lure in any potential comic book readers is by making a comic book entitled Punisher Saga #1 available for free online. Hm. Free gateway comics available to everyone. Online. Wish I’d thought of that.
The Beat wanted to send a shout out to long-time Beat pal Gregory Shane “Hurricane” Helms who returns to action in the WWE ring tonight on Smackdown for the first time since breaking his neck in May, 2007. Hurricane (now returning to his former ring name) has had a tough year or so, and it’s really great to see him back where he belongs. And sporting a gigantic new tattoo.
Come to think of it, as you may recall, Hurricane was formerly “The” Hurricane, the superhero-themed wrestling superstar, known for his love of Green Lantern and his superheroic lifestyle. Although the green-tressed and masked Hurricane persona has been gone for several years, isn’t it time, maybe, for one of those surprise comeback appearances, like how Mick Foley used to come out as Mankind every once in a while? We thinks so. Perhaps Helms will once again don the mask and everyone will “stand back.”
If you weren’t at SPX this weekend, then maybe you were parked in front of the tube watching either the baseball playoffs or the Elite XC show on CBS last night. And you could only be left asking one question after the night was over.
Who had a worse night: The Cubs or Kimbo Slice?
The heavily-favored Cubbies had the best record in the National League and were expected to perhaps end their century-long championship drought. Instead, the Dodgers, led by ex-Yankee skipper Joe Torre and former Red Sox slugger Manny Ramirez, swept the Cubs and sent a whole region of the country into despair.
Meanwhile, Slice, MMA’s most notorious fighter, had his night and aura and future ended after fourteen seconds, losing to a replacement fighter with blotches of pink hair. Seth Petruzelli, a one-time participant in the Beat’s favorite TV show The Ultimate Fighter, was supposed to fight on the show’s undercard, but was vaulted into the main event after Ken Shamrock was injured the day before the fight and ruled ineligible by the commission.
The one highlight of the EXC show was the peformance of the promotion’s other star, Gina Carano (aka Crush from American Gladiators). Carano managed to make weight for this show (although not before having to strip naked behind a towel to get light enough) and dispatched her opponent, setting a fight with Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos, who also won last night.
Of course, the big question today is whether there even will be another event on CBS. EC has been hemmoraging money and if last night’s rating wasn’t to CBS’s liking, there will probably not be any more shows. Did Shamrock’s scratch from the line-up hurt viewership? Numbers are not in yet, but there have been arguments made today that the number could go either way. So we’ll just have to see on this one.
Oh, and if you’re a Dodgers fan today, you’re far from melancholy. You should just be getting ready to play the Phillies and hoping for a repeat of when the teams met 30 years ago in the playoffs. Is Danny Ozark still around anywhere?
Sad days in the world of pro wrestling, especially if you are a fan of the Lucha Libre style.
On tonight’s 75th Anniversary CMLL show in Mexico City, Blue Panther, one of the most accomplished luchadors of the modern era, shockingly lost his mask in the main event against Villano V.
If you think comics nerds get upset when some Silver Age “B” level villain gets a costume change, you should see how Lucha loving wrestling nerds are reacting to this shocking development. Imagine if Batman was killed not by the Joker or Ra’s Al Ghul, but by The Signalman or The Cavalier?
As the Beat would likely say in this situation, “We need to go lie down.” We know there are plenty of comics folks out there who dig the Mexican wrestling (since we used to supply them with tapes back in the day), so our condolences go out to them too.
An interesting story up at SPORTS ILLUSTRATED’S web site. Comics were made as recruitment tools by the University of Oregon to try and land highly valued prospects and they have reprinted one in its entirety on the site.
This is the second conjunction of sports and comics thanks to SI. There was, of course, the cover of the magazine from a few weeks ago drawn by Mark Bagley and featuring Bizarro.
Posted by Mark Coale
§ Name calling. Seriously, if you don’t like what someone is doing on a comic book you should feel free to make your feelings known, but calling the editor of the book an ass or telling the writer to suck your Dockers is cretinous behavior. As mentioned before, it is now grounds for banning.
§ Uninformed speculation. Granted it is an interesting time in the comics industry, and a lot is happening. However, wild guesses and baseless speculation is a waste of time and prevents accurate information from getting out there. And trust me, none of us know what is going on behind closed doors at any comics company.
§ General shittiness. Behind every rumor is a real person. Let’s all try to remember that.
If you’ve been spending a little much time surfing the net and reading comics (be they capes or non-capes) and feeling a little too nerdy, this is the weekend to change up the routine. There’s MMA and Super Bowl to get your juices flowing.
First up the third UFC event in recent weeks, a mega-show taking place in their traditional pre-Super Bowl Saturday timeslot. The main event is a contest for the Interim Heavyweight Championship between former champ Tim Sylvia and ex-PRIDE titleholder Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. But, to many casual fans, the fight to see this night is the UFC debut of former WWE champion Brock Lesnar, who is taking on yet another previous UFC Heavyweight Champion, Frank Mir.
But that’s really just a warm-up to the big event of the weekend, Super Bowl XLII in Arizona. To make yet another pro rasslin’ analogy, the New York Giants are the scrappy babyface looking to take down the swaggering, arrogant heel, being the New England Patriots. New England, penalized earlier in the year for stealing another team’s signals and full of players often accused of playing dirty, is shooting for a perfect season, something not done in over 25 years.
Oh yeah, for those of you going to a Super Bowl party but not really caring about the game, the early buzz on the Big Commercial during the game is a Pepsi spot revolving around a couple of hearing-impaired guys looking for a buddy’s house. You can see the commercial online already here.
And, as THE BEAT mentioned the other day, there will be an IRON MAN trailer shown during the game, one of many advertising summer blockbusters.
If you really don’t care, there’s always PUPPY BOWL or the MYTHBUSTERS marathon to watch on cable instead.
For those so inclined, take a break today from reading those comics or watching DVDs for today’s annual Hockey Day in Canada. (Apparently, it’s also Hockey Day in Minnesota, according to the Islanders/Wild telecast.) The Detroit/Toronto game may be in the books already, but there are plenty of games left tonight (including the Battle of Alberta).
Some of the better-known hockey/comics/nerdverse connections:
* Although people always associate PEANUTS with baseball, St. Paul native Charles Schulz was a big hockey enthusiast, owning a rink in Southern California and was even inducted into the US Hockey Hall of Fame in 1993.
* Todd McFarlane used to a partial owner of the NHL Edmonton Oilers and even designed their one of their alternate logos. And there was the Tony Twist Lawsuit.
If you’re looking for a girl wh can really kick some ass, Nicharee “Jeeja” Vismistananda, star of the new MA film CHOCOLATE is the girl. It’s directed by Prachya Pinkaew, who made Tony Jaa a star in ONG BAK.
Sure the trailer’s promise of “Real injuries!” is a little disturbing, but Jeeja is amazing.
We love chronicling all the crossovers between our two favorite popular culture mediums involving giant muscled-up people hitting each other repeatedly: superhero comics and pro wresting.
Today, it’s an interview at Marvel.com with Friend of the Beat Shane Helms aka The Hurricane. There’s talk about comics and sports entertainment, including Helms’ all-too-real neck injury, which has kept him out of action for quite a while now.
The comics industry was first shocked, then stunned and then just gobsmacked as news leaked out this week of the engagement of The Beat and writer Ben McCool, of Birmingham, UK.
“MacDonald’s constant posting about ‘DDGB’ always makes me chuckle,” said DC publisher Paul Levitz. “I hope that isn’t going to stop.”
“When The Beat runs all those beefcake pictures of Marvel movie stars, box office is guaranteed,” echoed Marvel e-i-c- Joe Quesada. “This could mean a real blow to our bottom line.”
Industry concerns over the removal of these and other popular Beat Fave Hotties regularly featured on the site were allayed somewhat when news of a prenup spread. “The Beat will not change,” a close friend of the couple revealed. “She will continue to post just as much silly crap as before.
“The only big change is that The Beat is now required by law to support Aston Villa,” the pal continued.
As for Beat regulars, Gerard Butler and Clive Owen, neither could be reached for comment.
Friends of Butler, say the 300 star has been in seclusion. “He’s completely gutted and has been driven to take a role as a widowed father of 7 who must chase a kitten through a zoo in order to win the heart of Sarah Jessica Parker,” said one insider.
Owen is said to be similarly distraught, and has vowed to devote his now-empty life to playing hard boiled tough guys who never smile or miss a shot.
What have things come to, when even the precocious and eternally cute Hello Kitty is willing to settle a grudge by stepping into the squared circle?
Pro Wrestling Guerrilla, in conjunction with Gente California and SANRIO Co., LTD., will present the first ever professional wrestling match for the Kitty World Order (KWO). On April 5, 2008, the cheerful Hello Kitty® and mischievous Kuromi® will meet inside the wrestling ring in a classic battle of The Good vs. The Bad. This match between these two beloved characters has been sanctioned by SANRIO Co., LTD. and PWG, and will be part of a live event that will feature PWG World Championship and PWG World Tag Team Championship title matches. The event takes place on Saturday, April 5, 2008 at 8:00PM at American Legion Post #308, located at 7338 Canby Ave., Reseda, CA 91335. General Admission tickets for the event are $20. Please visit http://www.prowrestlingguerrilla.com or http://www. gentecal. com for more information.
This weekend in Japan, the Yakult Swallows baseball team wore throwback jerseys in their series against the Tokyo Giants. Back then, the Swallows were called the Yakult Atoms and had an Astro Boy logo on their jerseys.
Both my wife and I have rather annoyingly been struck with some terrible back pains at the exact same time. This is especially sucky because both of us are hobbling around the house like a couple of injured camels, complaining, whining, and generally being a pains in the butt.
Yep...lots of fun at the ol' Novak household.
I put a few new zombie designs up recently over at redbubble, including one just in time for the new Indiana Jones flick. Feel free to check them out.
I usually don’t do “and then I left for the airport” trip reports because, let’s face it, everyone has travel travails. Maybe I am just an old fart, but my trip thus far has been marked by breakdowns of service and civility that are annoying and, taken as a whole, alarming. Consider this an ode, then.
* To the woman at American Airlines check in who saw that my suitcase was broken and couldn’t be checked and when asked “Is there anywhere I can get a tool to fix it?” just looked like I’d asked her to clean my shoes with her tongue: Go to heck! (I saw a guy with a lanyard and he did attempt to help me, and knew what the problem was, but couldn’t fix it and advised me to go see a TSA person. In the end I fixed it all by myself, broken fingernails and all.)
* To the brilliant planner at American Airlines who decided that all lunches and snacks would come at a charge ($2 for those pretzels you used to get free) and then sold them all while I was asleep and then had absolutely nothing to eat on the plane: Go to heck! To the stewardess who just looked at me blankly when I asked if there was any food left like I had asked for a diamond ring: go to heck! (The nice lady sitting next to me did heed my pain and give me a Quaker Oats bar from her purse. Neighbor helping neighbor, it’s all we’ve got.)
* To the revoltingly annoying girl or 20 or so behind me who tried to hold her bulldog on her lap for the whole flight and when told she had to put it away begged and whined like a 3 year old, and then yelled at her mom like she was a slave, and kept kicking my chair: you are the bleak future of America.
*To the guy in front of me who had bad gas the whole trip: please use the restroom.
* To the woman at the rental car agency who, without telling me, gave me a giant LeSabre or something at Premium rental price, when I had reserved a compact: You are a bad person. (When confronted with the Boat of Car, appalled, I asked the old Latino dude cleaning the parking lot if this was a compact and he laughed. “Once everyone wants SUV…no more!” I had to wait half an hour for a compact to come in, because apparently with gas at $4+ a gallon no one wants a gas guzzler any more.)
* To the people at the Bonaventure who decided that my room would be the one with no room service menu or shower cap…GIVE ME A BREAK! I called two people to get me a room service menu, and they said there are none. Luckily the guy who brought up my eventual meal went and got one for me.
Maybe I am a demanding crank, but I don’t think any of my requests today were outrageous or should have been met by blank stares, hostility or deceit, I ran into an acquaintance, also here for the BEA in the lobby and he was chewing out a hotel employee because the wifi in the lobby didn’t work. Suddenly I felt one of those “Death Wish” yeah yeah, you go! moments. Someone was fighting back and I was proud!
On the plus side, I did see Keanu Reeves on the plane.
BTW, was that the most boring season of THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER or what? No one had any charisma but the coaches. George was the only one who acted like a professional. And this was definitely the most, er, “mentally challenged” cast yet. The two guys who wouldn’t train with Hughes? Look, I know Serra is the most loved coach ever, and Hughes is a dick/bully but come on - the chance to train with a great fighter? Why would you pass up a chance to maybe learn something?
OTOH, these two also sat around the house giggling like drunk schoolgirls. And then there was the “upper decker.” Poop pranks…bleah! Losers!
I never thought I’d say this but I missed Gabe Ruediger.
A friend has invited me to join her at sex parties a few times. I always make up an excuse about why I can’t go, and she keeps asking. How can I politely tell her I’m not interested without sounding judgmental?
There are some things you can just say no to. There’s a difference between someone asking, “Will you come to my birthday party?” and, “Will you come to my orgy?” An orgy is just not something everyone does, so hurting her feelings is not part of the equation — she’s asking you if you want peanut butter on your bagel, and you don’t.
I’m going on my third date with a guy whose birthday is this weekend. What can I plan that will be “birthday special,” but not inappropriately romantic? Sleep with him. You shouldn’t really show your intense thoughtfulness or capacity for giving gifts so early in a relationship, but men always like sex.
Check out the he said/she said as the duo answer the same question — one a bit too racy to include in this family blog!
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