Sunday, March 29, 2009

Barbie and the Diamond Castle

So, my perversest curiosity piqued from the research I did last week, I went ahead and rented Barbie and the Diamond Castle. And I have to say, it was not terrible. In fact, I'd say it was okay, although that didn't stop me from being bothered by certain things:
  • The lack of development of the muses. Not really the characters, but their way of life. I mean, all we know about them is that they live in a diamond castle that is supposedly the birthplace of music, and the three muses played music together. Aren't muses supposed to go out and inspire? Maybe that's what the apprentices did, and that's why a diamond would appear on the walls whenever a new songs was created, as proof that the apprentices weren't slacking off.
  • And why does everyone assume that Lydia will take over the world if she gets the diamond castle? As far as I can recall (and I only watched it once, so maybe I missed it somewhere), the only thing she wanted to rule was music. And how does ruling music turn the world into "shadows and sorrow," anyway? I'm thinking this plan was not too well thought out. Either that or Melody was being overdramatic.
  • Speaking of music, the contemporary songs in a decidedly noncontemporary time was really jarring. I mean, I can forgive the first one, since it was Barbie and Teresa shoehorning the song they were writing into the story, but the others have no excuse. Especially not the twins' one.
  • And the dogs dancing in an anthropomorphic manner bugged me so very, very much. I know that the story takes place in a world with all manner of things that aren't real, but other than the dancing, the dogs mostly acted like nonanthropomorphic dogs, which is why it bugged me.
  • Why didn't the girls grow any vegetables? Then they could make their own mashed potatoes. And since potatoes grow underground, they wouldn't have gotten ruined by the storm. Same with carrots.
  • While Kathleen Barr did a good job as Lydia, I can't help but think there was just something a little off in her portrayal.
  • And why was Stacie having a fight with Courtney? She's supposed to be Skipper's best friend, not Stacie's! (The only reason I feel this strongly about it, though, is my older sister had the Courtney doll.) Speaking of Skipper, whatever happened to her?
And a couple of observations:
  • Looking at the flashback scene again, I can certainly see why Lydia wanted to go off on her own. She was already playing most of the melody of their songs while the other two just plunked away on a lyre and lute. If that's how most of their songs were, it's easy to imagine why she'd think the other two were superflous.
  • I honestly was hoping that the seeds the muses gave the girls at the end would be vegetable seeds, but no.
  • Oh, Scott McNeil, you must love that voice. This is the third time I've heard you use it.
  • And listening to Melody is like listening to a slightly less-hyper Ooka every time. I tried to not hear it, but it was impossible (I mean, that's a lot of the reason that I had to watch this movie in the first place, but still).

Friday, March 27, 2009

My Coraline Swap Box

The box I sent out in the Coraline Swap arrived about a week ago, and since the recipient has blogged it up, I can share it here, too.
From the moment I heard about the swap, I knew what I wanted to put in it. On the very same day that I saw the movie, I picked up a book called Creepy Cute Crochet, so I made a Coraline doll in the same style. I also knew I wanted to make a mouse, but since I didn't think I would have time to experiment on a circus outfit (as it was, most of my time was taken up with making and remaking the raincoat, and figuring out the directions for making the hair), I made one of the real Mr. B's mice, even though they never actually make an appearance in the movie (which is why it has safety eyes instead of button eyes). Unfortunately, some of the red velvet residue got on the dolls, but otherwise, they came out rather nicely, I think.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Christopher Walken as a Cat

I recently discovered a channel on Youtube that has a ton of stuff from the Cannon films library, including trailers for all the movies in the Cannon MovieTales series.  Now, when I was really very young, the Disney Channel used to show the Cannon versions of Hansel and Gretel (of which I only remember Gretel singing "maybe she lives underneath a chocolate tree" and Hansel telling her that doesn't exist, and that the witch turned children into gingerbread people that all turned back to normal once she was defeated) and The Frog Prince (starring Aiden Quinn from the movie version of Annie, and a human-sized frog), although I didn't realize they were made by the same studio at the time.  Nor did I know that the Snow White movie my sisters and I used to rent (which opened with the entire kingdom singing about the snow) was also a Cannon film.  Cannon made a number of these fairy tale films, including Puss in Boots starring Christopher Walken.  For that reason alone I rented it and watched it, seeing as it is available on DVD.  Especially since it's a Mustached Christopher Walken playing the cat.  Or rather, the human version of the cat, since in the Cannon version, Puss can change from cat to human when he needs to, not to mention sing and dance.  Walken's singing is nothing to write home about, but it isn't cringe-worthy, either, so there you go.  The movie itself is servicable, with additions to stretch the story, such as an encounter between Puss and the ogre towards the middle of the film, and a dance at the palace, among other things.  A little bland, but not anything that would drive you crazy if your kid was watching it over and over again.  Plus, Mustached Christopher Walken!  What more do you need?  Also, the miller's youngest son is played by Jason Connery, Sean Connery's son.

The trailer:

Christopher Walken sings and dances:

Monday, March 23, 2009

What I Read - White Oleander

Just a short one this time around.  I picked up White Oleander when I was browsing on BookMooch, and if you've been paying attention, you know why it caught my eye.  So I put it in my wishlist and once it arrived, I basically could not put it down.  It's the story of Astrid, shuffled from foster home to foster home after her mother is sent to jail for murdering an ex-lover.  And like I said, it was incredibly gripping.  I haven't been so compelled to keep reading a book in months.  But that said, it is a very dark book, as a lot of the situations Astrid finds herself in are not very pleasant, and even the nicer ones have an edge to them.  There's instances of sex, drugs, and even rock and roll (no, really), and all that goes with them, so keep that in mind if you decide to read the book.
The edition I received was the movie tie-in, so after I read the book, I checked out the movie, and while I thought it was good, it wasn't nearly as powerful as the book, first because the book is told in first person, so we really get inside Astrid's head much more, and second, the movie cuts out the two worst foster homes and moves one of the other homes to an earlier part of the film, which doesn't quite feel right.  But maybe that's because I read the book first.  If I'd seen the movie first I probably wouldn't have bothered reading the book might have felt that the order it put the homes in was off.  And while this isn't really related to the movie itself, the two 'making of' featurettes on the DVD heavily recycle footage from each other.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Triple Decker Sushi Pack

Since I've been a bit remiss in blogging the second season of Sushi Pack (not that I ever promised to blog every episode, unlike AiCaL), here are three recent Unagi-centric episodes (one is actually from season one, but it fits the theme):

The Thing that Wasn't There - "Not bad.  But that isn't my plan.  I don't have a plan.  I wish I had a plan!"
This one starts with the Pack playing one of those special editions of Clue with Ben, and Maguro happens to win for the third time in a row.  The others accuse her of using her psychic powers to win, but she insists she's not that kind of girl, although she undermines her argument by reading Tako's mind immediately afterwards.  Ben, however, insists that Maguro has never given them a reason not to trust her, despite her flaunting her powers all the time.  Ikura dares her to read Wasabi's mind, and she distracts them all with a trip to the ice cream parlor.
Meanwhile, two scientists somewhere else in Wharf City crow about their completed Electroscope, which they don't plan on actually using until the next day.  As they leave, a jolt of electricity surrounds the scope, and something invisible leaves visible footprints as it also leaves the building.  At the ice cream parlor, Maguro offers Tako a lick of her ice cream, but because it looks like pistachio ice cream, his absolute least favorite, he declines.  While Maguro is rebutting that it isn't pistachio at all, her ice cream (not to mention the others') is suddenly sucked away.  Turns out all the vacuums are on at the department store across the street, and the Pack tries to keep from getting sucked in, but to no avail.  Tako's able to keep them from getting completely sucked in, and Maguro uses her powers to see a ghostly shape that she can only describe as a "thing."  Unfortunately for her, no one else can see it, and when Ikura and Wasabi lose their grip, she takes it on herself to stop the Thing.  This stops the vacuums, but Tako now thinks she's crazy, and has Kani give her a "medical scan."  But Maguro insists she's fine: just because she saw something that no one else could see doesn't mean she's sick.
But Tako's not buying it.  As Maguro tries to make her case, they walk past a bunch of cars that suddenly start blaring music from their radios.  Maguro takes a psychic look at the nearest radio tower, and sure enough, the Thing is there.  Maguro insists they have to stop it, and only Ikura questions how they'll stop it if they can't see it.  Everyone else just thinks Maguro is crazy, but they go along anyway.  Once Maguro starts giving Tako orders, he too questions how to stop it if he can't even see it, so Maguro goes after it herself again.  This time she asks it what it wants, looking to the others like she's just talking to herself, but the Thing zaps her without a second thought.  She starts to fall, but Tako catches her and parachutes her to safety. 
Later, back at headquarters, the Pack tries to figure out what's going on and who's behind it, be it Sir Darkly or the Legion of Low Tide.  With Maguro back in action, they take to the Sushi Craft and go on the lookout for a villain.  Ikura tries to figure out whether "the thing that wasn't there" is actually there now, but just confuses himself and Wasabi.  Meanwhile, the Pack spots Unagi, out for an evening stroll, and figure that since both of the previous attacks were electrical in nature, he must be the one behind them, being an electric eel and all.  They chase him, while he wonders what he did to deserve this, and eventually they corner him.  He denies having any plan, and just as he does, the streetlights around them flicker.  Maguro recognizes this as a power surge, and since Unagi eats electricity, it couldn't have been him.  She calls for them to head for the Wharf City Dam, and Unagi tries to get away, but Tako grabs him, although not for the reason Maguro thinks.
As the dam overloads, lights all over Wharf City flicker on and off.  Maguro uses her powers to see the Thing, and tries to get the others to trust her that it is in fact there.  Tako's still not buying it, since it sounds to him like she wants to let Unagi do as he pleases.  But Maguro insists that she would never let that happen, just as she would never make Tako eat pistachio ice cream (why she brings that up now, I'm not really sure).  But as Kani points out, somebody has to do something before the dam is done for.  Tako goes into the many-headed thinking routine to puzzle out whether he should trust Maguro or not, and while it goes against his better judgement, he gives her the okay.  So Maguro enlists Unagi to help them out.  
While the Pack watches, Unagi sucks up the electrical power of the Thing and grows, not only in size, but in ego.  However, as the Thing fades, Unagi gets overloaded and starts, um, upchucking the electrical power quite violently, as in, it sends him flying.  Power returns to Wharf City, and the Pack celebrates.  Tako thanks Unagi for saving the day, but Unagi is too wiped out to appreciate it.
Now, I'm just wondering, what flavor ice cream did Maguro have, anyway?  I mean, the only other flavor I can think of that looks like pistachio is mint chocolate chip, but the chips would be obvious, if not to us, then to Tako.

Pants on Fire -"Oooh, the power to be annoying!"
As the Pack watches a thunderstorm, Ben warns them Wharf City is under attack, and they leap into action.  They prowl the streets, dodging green lightning bolts that can crack pavement, courtesy of Unagi.  He zaps various parts of the road, and suddenly they morph into some kind of anthropomorphic creatures that go after the Pack, but run into each other instead.  As Unagi powers up, he ponders what new name he should give himself, and settles on Unagi the Magnificient as he zaps the Sushi Pack (minus Ikura, who tripped).  However, this zap, rather than decimating the Pack, instead gives them new powers.  Kani's pincers now cause ear- and glass-shattering snaps, Maguro can turn invisible, Tako's tentacles form a drill, and Wasabi can make himself float around in a bubble.  To keep from feeling left out, Ikura pretends to have a power too awesome to show.
Since Unagi is still on the loose, the Pack once again leaps into action and show off their new powers while Unagi rides a tree.  Since they're in a playground, he morphs the slide into an elephant that grabs the Pack.  Maguro calls for Ikura to use his new powers, but he bluffs that it might not be safe, so Tako drills a hole that the others can crawl out of.  As the Pack retreats, Unagi goes into quick mode, zapping everything in sight.
Back at HQ, the Pack tries to figure out a way to stop Unagi.  Maguro's still getting a handle on her powers, and Ikura claims that he is, too.  Wasabi comes up with a plan to track Unagi based on the lightning he absorbs, so it's off to the Sushi Craft!  They're able to track him even after the storm ends (guess he absorbed a lot of lightning).  This also means Unagi's lightning power is still going strong, and he turns a bus against the Pack.  While he monologues about his charge, Maguro goes invisible and sneaks up on him, sending him into a nearby fountain.
While Unagi dries off in a bagel shop across the street, the Pack muses on what to do back at the Green Donut.  Maguro figures that Ikura hasn't used his power yet, so they still have a chance against Unagi.  So Tako devises a plan to lure Unagi into Ben's newly-empty store room, and have Ikura corner him.  Ikura doesn't like the sound of it, but doesn't admit to not having a power just yet.  So the Pack goes to confront Unagi, who is enjoying a bagel, but doesn't balk at turning one into a monster to take on his enemies.  The Pack successfully lures Unagi into the Green Donut, but this only gives him the opportunity to make a mutant jelly donut, which is more dangerous than a mutant bagel.  The Pack use reverse psychology to get Unagi (who amends his new title to "Unagi the Terribly Magnificent") into the store room, and then gloat that there's nothing for him to mutate.  But Unagi finds a loophole and morphs the door.  Ha ha!
Cornered by the door, Ikura finally confesses that he has no new power, and Wasabi gets them out of the shop just in time.  Ben informs them that Unagi flew away on a morphed eagle statue, and they take off--all except Ikura, who feels too guilty.   But the others come back for him, since he's still a part of the team (and he can do penance for his lying after they save the day).  As they go after Unagi in the Sushi Craft, a stray comment from Maguro gives Ikura an idea!
Using one of the Sushi Craft's mirrors, the Pack aims Unagi's lightning right back at him.  He starts to fall, but Maguro catches him, and flings him toward the Sushi Craft, where the others stick him in a box.  After depositing him somewhere else, Tako reveals that zapping him with his own lightning reverse all the mutations, meaning everything is back to normal, including the Sushi Pack.  So no new powers for them anymore, sad to say.
Bonus screenshot:  Kani eggs on Ikura

Lights On, Lights Off - "I've been blinded by the Donut Beam!"
This episode opens with the Mayor holding a press conference to announce a special celebration of Wharf City winning the prestigious "City With the Most Photogenic Fire Hydrants" Award.  To honor this, the Mayor calls for the entire world to come to Wharf City and celebrate.  To show his commitment to partying down, he rips off his suit coat to reveal a Hawaiian shirt underneath (I wonder how long he's wanted to do that).  As part of the celebration, there will be water slides and extra special fountains, along with a snack bar and some performance art by Tako.  To start the event off right, the Mayor plans to turn on every single light in Wharf City at Midnight, creating a Night of a Million Lights, and a light so bright you can see it from space!  Maguro questions the Mayor on all that wasted water and electricity, but he brushes off her question and gets the heck out of there.
Back at the Green Donut, Ben agrees with Maguro that conservation is important, but points out that a celebration would be good for town spirit (not to mention Tako's ego).  Wasabi calls Ben out on letting the water run while he does the dishes (Kani translates), a rare stumble on Ben's part.
Cut to a different, leaky, sink full of dirty dishes in the kitchen of Titanium Chef's sushi restaurant.  Unagi idly wonders how much water that leak wastes, which confounds the Chef, since Unagi never cared about conservation before.  Unagi tries to play like he did, but Titanium Chef just gives him a big "U Phail!" and moves on to the real reason he came in the room.  According to the Book of Chum Chop, to know success is to know failure.  He asks the Legionnaires to elaborate on this point, but when Fugu's answer is pathetic, he assumes Unagi's response will be just as bad and automatically fails him.  But hearing it again, he admits that Unagi got it right, and even compliments him on the wording.  This somehow leads into Titanium Chef's plan to help Wharf City celebrate by putting up as many lights as possible.
All over the city, preparations for the Night of a Million Lights is underway.  Lights are replaced, water flows freely, and the Wharf City Power Station is getting close to its limit.  Figuring that celebrations are a great opportunity for more business, Ben starts cooking up a special layered donut, and shows Kani and Maguro the lights the town set up on his shop.  Kani is blinded, but Maguro is too intent on deriding the Mayor's plans for the celebration to notice.  Ben feels helpless to go against the Mayor, since all he wants is for everyone to have a good time.
Meanwhile, Tako enlists Ikura and Wasabi to help him set up his performance art: a few dozen dozen fans on town hall to scatter his ink on a nearby canvas.  Ikura and Wasabi are concerned about the electricity used, but Tako isn't worried, since the town is paying.  As the day winds down, Sophia Tucker reports on all the preparation, unaware that each one is slowly adding to the toll on the dam, inching ever closer to the limit.  Which couldn't make Titanium Chef happier, as he and the Legion wait for the inevitable power failure.  With no water and electricity, Titanium Chef crows, "chaos and mayhem will rule!"  Only Unagi points out that they need those things, too, but he is ignored.
As midnight grows closer, the Mayor is ready to set the Night of a Million Lights in motion.  After the big countdown, everything gets started, finally breaking the dam and causing a blackout all over the world! (Wait, how'd that part happen?)  Tako takes the blame for wasting energy, and Maguro uses Wasabi to spout the aesop one more time (though not the last time) before the Pack heads for the Power Station.  Titanium Chef is ready to lead the Legion to certain victory, but Unagi is nowhere to be found.  Turns out he's at the Power Station, where he goes head to head with Ikura.  Maguro interrupts their almost fight, stating that they'll need to work together to save their resources, regardless of whether that's what Unagi was there to do.  Fortunately for them, that is why he's there, so they form an uneasy team.  
Kani analyzes the situation and calls for a surge of power.  Unagi leaps to the call, and Ikura helps him out by letting him stand on his shoulders.  While he blasts the main power, Wasabi chucks a fireball at it, and their combined forces jumpstart the carbine and power returns to the world.  With the power back on, the Mayor claims to have learned a lesson from the whole thing, but the scene changes before he can espouse it, so we don't really know whether he learned the right lesson or not.  Probably he didn't, which is why the Sushi Pack takes it on themselves to address the audience (not directly, but you know that's who they're talking to) and make sure they learn the proper lesson.  Unagi even gets a piece of it.  With the lesson over, Unagi confirms that they have to be enemies again, despite Ikura's reluctance (Oho!).  Maguro congratulates him all the same, although she praises the entire Pack at the same time.  Instead of the usual end call of "Sushi Pack!" the six of them leap in the air and cry out "Go Planet Earth!"
Can I just say, green aesops really annoy me.  Maybe it's the condescention, or maybe it's the fact that one town wasting electricity took out all the power grids in the entire world.  If it weren't for Titanium Chef being awesome as usual and Unagi being uncharacteristically conscientious, I might have let this one go unblogged.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Voice Acting Fact Finding Mission

In trying to find out whether or not the Maryoku Yummy series is actually airing anywhere, I saw that a new episode had been posted on And not just any new episode, but a Formatted Episode. That is, instead of just being one of the two 11 minute stories that make up an episode, this one is both stories with bit of filler in the middle *and* the closing credits. Which is very good for me, since I could finally see the list of voice actors. As per usual, the cast is listed without any acknowledgement of who plays who, but I have a few guesses:
Shannon Chan-Kent - Maryoku
Scott McNeil - Shika
Maryke Hendrikse - Ooka
And I was right that Chiara Zanni is in it, thus she must be Hadagi. I based a few of my guesses on watching clips of other things they've done, to pinpoint the voice actor if they hadn't done anything I recognized, which was kind of funny when I was watching Death Note clips of Misa, trying to see if the voice sounded closer to Maryoku or someone else.

Looking up the VAs, I noticed that a few of them were in the same titles over and over again, which means that most of them are in the Ocean Group dubbing company (they do a lot of Viz-related dubs). I also noticed that some of them were in the dub of Powerpuff Girls Z, which surprised me because as far as I'd heard, it hadn't come out over here yet. When it came out in Japan, I watched about the first twelve or so episodes and then just read Moetron for any more info I wanted, since their posts were usually more interesting than watching the series. And it was Moetron that gave me the info I wanted to know: apparently, the dubbed episodes haven't been shown in the states yet, but have aired in Australia and the Philippines. But the real reason I'm bringing this up is because they linked to some clips that have been put up on Youtube, including a clip with the Gangreen Gang, and when I was watching it, I very nearly said "Ace is Ikura!" outloud. And sure enough, it was Andrew Francis. Also, Mark Oliver (Grizzle's VA) is Him:

One more thing. While pinning down whether or not Maryke Hendrikse was a close enough match for Ooka, I watched a little bit of Barbie and the Diamond Castle, mostly the part where her character gives the backstory on the villain of the movie, Lydia, an evil ex-muse who trapped two others, and I saw something that just made no sense to me. You see, in the flashback we see the three of them before Lydia turned evil, but while the other two are wearing simple tunics, Lydia is already decked out in her villainwear. I mean, normally you'd think a muse that turned evil would have an Evil Costume Switch, not be Obviously Evil from the get-go (and to be fair, her flute does get an evil makeover), especially when the other two seem to have some kind of muse dress code going on. Unless this was a gradual thing...first, she traded in her flower headband for thorns to hold her bun, then she started playing death metal songs on her flute, and then came the outfit. All the clues were there, but the other muses refused to see the truth about what was happening to their friend until it was too late. Either that, or since it was Melody's flashback, she just remembers it happening that way ("All the muses were nice, except for Lydia, who was evil. Evil, I tells ya!").

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Coraline Box Swap results

As part of the promotion for the movie Coraline (which is awesome, especially if you see it in 3D, as I did back in February), the crew put together 50 boxes of Coraline-related stuff that they sent out to 50 different bloggers, who appropriately blogged about them.  I'd like to note that none of these blogs were ones I read, and I found out about the promotion from the IMDB messageboards after the fact.  Some boxes had concept art, some had bits and pieces of props used in the movie, and some even had the Coraline doll.
After finding out about these boxes, I also found out about a proposed Coraline Box Swap run by my little mochi, and filled with Coraline-inspired craftiness, I joined in.  There were a few rules to follow: two to three handmade items, two black buttons, a red velvet-lined box, etc., but in general we were given free range to do whatever we wanted to, as long as it was Coraline-related.  While I only got my box out by the deadline (3/16), the box that was sent to me came just the other day, from Paolina

And it is seriously awesome.  She used a paper mache box in the shape of a book (I saw those when I was looking for a box myself, but I didn't make the connection to using one) and painted it with the star pattern from Coraline's sweater later in the film.

Although there were 50 of the original boxes, there were only 44 boxes in this swap.  (My box is #29, btw.)

The opened box ^_^
Paolina's boyfriend drew this pic of her and him as dolls, with the cat and button key (which is partially obscured by my camera's flash.  I tried taking nonflash pictures, but they came out all blurred).

Thread, buttons, and a seeing stone.

One of the requirements was a letter detailing the contents of the box.  I love the stationary!  Thank you so much, Paolina and boyfriend!

I'll blog about my own box once my recipient, Purlgurl, gets it.  For a preview, check out the Coraline Box Swap flickr group.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

St. Patrick's Shamrocks

For St. Patrick's Day I crocheted up some shamrocks using this pattern.  I only really meant to make one or two, but I made four for the following reasons:
1. The first one seemed too ripply to me, so I figured my gauge was off and made the next one. 
2. By the time I finished the second one, I realized that I had misread the pattern and double-crocheted in the second row of both shamrocks instead of half-double-crochet.
3. I made the next one following the pattern exactly.  And while it looked nice, it didn't look quite right.
4. So I made the last one just like the first one, except I used the magic ring method instead of making 12 double-crochets in one chain stitch.

Looking at them now, I think the second one looks the best.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Strawberry Shortcake's not the only one getting a makeover

...and it's not just Hasbro that's redesigning hot properties.  The image above is supposedly a nine-to-ten-year-old Dora the Explorer, who will apparently become a Nancy Drew-like tween come this Fall (her official design wasn't supposed to be revealed until then, either, but angry parents forced Nickelodeon and Mattel's hand).  The redesign is an attempt to reach the girls who grew up on Dora (who has been on the air for almost ten years, after all), although the original Dora series will continue to air.  As far as I can tell, the Tween Dora will be more about an online game than a tv series, with an interactive doll ala Webkins.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Evalana goes shopping

So, I went shopping yesterday for the express purpose of finding the following: Sushi Pack books and Maryoku Yummy products. You see, I recently learned that two Sushi Pack books were released back in January, both of which are available on, but since I got a Borders gift card for my birthday, I figured I'd see if I could find them there. I was only able to find the first one (based on the episode Rex Marks the Spot) and not the second (based on Wassup Wasabi), so I may be placing an order on Amazon sooner rather than later. You can see images from the first book here and the second here.
Not too long after I learned about the Sushi Pack books, I noticed a couple of press releases on that pertained to Maryoku Yummy. One mentioned the upcoming animated series and a March debut, but I haven't been able to find any information anywhere else about this, so I'm assuming it got delayed. But the other, more recent one mentioned that you can now find Maryoku merchandise in Justice/Limited Too stores, so I swallowed any embarrassment I might have and went straight to the front of the store. There I saw a few products including mini-plushes, pins, lip gloss and lollipops. As you can see, I got mini-plushes of Maryoku and Hadagi (of course) and a set of pins. The mini-plushes are very cute, and they have elastics on the back so you can tie your hair up with them if you so desire. Hadagi is definitely too magenta and not purpley enough. You can buy the mini-plushes and large plushes (which I didn't see in the store) on the Justice website.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Video - Saturday Morning Watchmen

I'm sure you've already seen this, but just in case you haven't, you should definitely check out Saturday Morning Watchmen.  Basically, it's the theme song for "What if Watchman were a late 80's/early 90's cartoon."  A little knowledge of Watchmen is needed to really get it, I think, but not too much.  (Basically, I got the jokes just from what I've gleaned off of Fandom!Secrets.)  What really makes this video, in my opinion, is how it nails the character tropes of the time.

Bonus!  Bum Reviews Watchmen:

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

National Crochet Month

I recently learned that March is National Crochet Month, so I thought I'd show off some of the things I've crocheted since last May, when I started to crochet seriously (as you may recall, I tried to get going in 2002 and 2006, but it didn't really take until last year).

These first four are all made from patterns in Get Hooked Again:

A sunglasses case, right when I needed one most.

A bag intended to hold WIPs.  I had a lot of fun making the individual pieces, even if it didn't come together that well.

Of course, a case to hold my hooks.  The pattern really included crocheted flowers on the outside, but they came out looking funny, so I just left them off.

A scarf made from two different yarns, since I ran out of one halfway through (or rather, it became the halfway point when I ran out.  I like the effect, though.

This bag is from a pattern in Stitch 'N Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker.  Despite the unfortunate name, it has a lot of interesting patterns in it.  I didn't starch the straps, so they got all stretched out.

This is from a Bernat pattern that I got off their website.  Nice and fluffy.

Here my husband is modeling a toque I made for him for Christmas.  The pattern is from Not Your Mama's Crochet, but I think it's wrong, because even though I went up two hook sizes, the finished product is way small, unlike the one on the guy in the picture in the book.

This one isn't actually finished yet.  It's a shawl from a pattern sheet I got at Michael's, and all it needs is the fringe to be complete.

Just a couple of coasters I whipped up the other day while watching a movie.