Odds and Ends Blast Off!

We haven’t done one of these for a while, so let’s look at a few bite-size nuggets of coolness from around the Interwebs, comic shops, toy stores and anywhere else that geek treasure might be found. And away we go…


Have you been visiting Blastoff every day? Hopefully so, since something new has been posted nearly every week day since we launched, whether it’s new content from yours truly, new ReTales columns from Jud Meyers, new material from Amy Ratcliffe, or all kinds of material about this month’s subject, Daredevil, from all over the Web.

Well, if you haven’t, today is definitely the day to visit, as we’re premiering the first of our Blastoff Video Interviews today, as Amy Ratcliffe sits down with current DAREDEVIL writer Mark Waid to talk about his new (or is it classic?) approach to the character.


Mark was good enough to open his home to us for the interview, and the result was one of the most enjoyable times I’ve had in this business. Amy did a marvelous job conducting the interview, and Mark was both insightful and hilarious. I’m really proud of this one; make sure you go check it out. Here’s the link:


And, yes, I’m desperately jealous of Mark’s Hawkman helmet.


I managed to get a hold of some early-released action figures for this May’s upcoming AVENGERS movie, and a few things definitely caught my eye. First off, we finally get a good look at what a Mark Ruffaloed Hulk is going to look like:


And the first glimpse of the Mark VII Iron Man armor as well:


Thor and Cap look much the same as we’ve seen in the trailer, although I’ll admit the revised Cap uniform is growing on me:

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And sharp-eyed readers may wonder: is that the Cosmic Cube on Loki’s staff?

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But the real question these toys bring up: Is Hawkeye really going to be wearing a Grifter mask in the movie?


Yikes. Let’s hope not.


It’s no secret around these parts what a big fan I am of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION. And it’s also no secret to anyone who’s seen them how absolutely terrible the series looks on DVD. It turns out that although the series was shot on film, it was then transferred to cheap videotape or the purposes of editing, so even on DVD it still looks like shoddy VHS quality.

Finally, in celebration of the series’ 25th anniversary, CBS is doing something about it, remastering the entire series from the original film stock for an all-new, multi-year Blu-ray release. The first season won’t be finished until later this year, but CBS is releasing a sampler disc to give you a taste of what’s to come, which can be had on Amazon for a measly 15 bucks. Take a look:


Make it so, already.


Last year was a great year for TRON fans (and yes, there are more than a few of us), with the long-awaited sequel feature film, the “ElecTRONica” attraction here in California at Disneyland, and the Blu-ray release of the original classic film. Topping it all off is this recent release by William Kallay, an in-depth look at the evolution and production of the 1982 film entitled THE MAKING OF TRON: HOW TRON CHANGED VISUAL EFFECTS AND DISNEY FOREVER.


Produced independently without the cooperation of Disney, the book is exhaustively researched and takes a big-picture look at the development and approval of the project, the nuts and bolts of the ground breaking special effects, the personalities behind the scenes, the landscape the film was released in, and its lasting effect on the industry. The book is a little rough in places, with more than a few typos and some clunky prose here and there. But it’s clear that this was a labor of love for Kallay, and there’s so much insight to be gained here, the book is absolutely worth it, particularly in its efforts to recontextualize what’s become the conventional wisdom about Disney’s ’80s experiments like TRON and THE BLACK HOLE, and to remind just what kind of competition the film was up against in the marketplace. An engaging read.

Scott Tipton is serious about that Hawkman mask. If you have questions about comics, send them here.


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