Deletion is Eminent

So, while reading some forum stuff over at the NaNoWriMo site, I discovered that posting fiction whole hog on the web constitutes publication and might actually adversely effect my chances of having some shite really published. Being so informed and hoping that, as weak as my writing is, I might someday want to try some stuff for publication I have taken down Open Wounds from this site and will no longer be posting the full text of my WriMo novel over on my sister blog, The City, Wide.

I have left up the first chapter of Open Wounds here and if anyone is interested in reading the rest, drop me a line. As for the novel over on the other site . . . I'm not sure. I will keep posting word counts daily (or whenever I have more words) and I might throw in weekly excerpts and take down what's already there, not really for sure on that yet.

But in any event, that's that.

Night, Clementine. Night, Boris.


Six Star General, Nov. 2004 at Jake's, Prov. RI - copyright: JxGraphx, 2004

posted by jax

NaNoWriMo continues with pain and suffering . . .

Still working on the challenge and finding it harder (but not much more) than I thought. I am a bit behind, but with the next four days off from work, the goal is to get back on track so that I am at least 1/2 way there by Monday at Midnight. Otherwise, I seem to have gotten a second wind with 2000 words written so far today and over 3500 for the last two days.

Otherwise all things quiet. Looking forward to tonight's episode of Lost and Smallville.

Expect a possible article up on this blog over the weekend that I won't be using for Forcesofgood.com. Speaking of which expect a new issue of that e-zine to premiere in early December retooled and with a continuation of the Chop Socky Creature Feature in a new format.

Finally, check out the attached poster that I just completed for my brother's band - go see them in a couple of weeks if you're in the Motherland of Providence.

Bedtime for Democracy and Goodnight, Bonzo.


NaNoWriMo Begins! Madness Ensues!

So my first batch of writing is done and blogged. 1860 words down. Check it out at:

Visit my writer profile "ryanjackson" at the National Novel Writing Month website at http://www.nanowrimo.org/ under the writer's profile search.

Thanks and wish me luck.


Happy All Hallow's Eve Weekly 5 Edition

Spooky night, happy frights!

Bookmark It: My fave Helloween Website: http://www.geocities.com/dzilla1964/ - Fond childhood memories spent in front of the boob tube!

Read It: Salem's Lot by Stephen King - perfect October reading. Also any of the horror stuff by Ray Bradbury, particularly, Something Wicked This Way Comes.

Listen to It: this is a given: Rob Zombie! Or White Zombie. You decide.

View It: I could have you here all night. But top of the list right now -- 28 Days Later, The Fog, Nightmare on Elm Street (the original.)

Scan It: DC Comics' new title, Toe Tags -- a horror anthology that just started; the first issue features the talented George Romero, writing a zombie story (what else!?) - awesome!

So there it is. Get out there and treat yourself to some of these tricky little numbers.

Happy Halloween!!


Back so Soon

I figured out the next fiction project: Here it is . . . . Wait for it . . . .

I am going to participate in National Novel Writing Month. That's right, write a novel in 30 days. 50,000 words from Nov. 1 to Nov. 30. I think I can, I think I can. I have to at least try. So Weekly Five tomorrow, the new novel (man!) on Monday.

Visit my new sister blogspot at www.thecitywide.blogspot.com

Wooo . . .

Peace at last, peace at last!

The Red Sox won the World Series. It finally sunk in today as I watched the parade through Boston on TV. Wow. Unbelieveable.

So, there haven't been any posts in a while, because of my computer problems, then the ALCS and then, astonishingly, the Series! But, those are done, I am finishing a graphic design project this weekend and then I am back in the saddle. I am puzzling over what will be the next fiction piece on here and I am narrowing it down, but expect some fiction on Tuesday.

In the meantime come back tomorrow for the 3rd installment of The Weekly Five -- Special All Hallow's Eve Edition.



Who's Your Daddy, Indeed? Be'atch!

That's right, mofos, the Sox did it. The Yankees didn't choke - they just got their pansy, little girls asses handed to them by a team with more heart, more drive and more guts than any other team in the history of sports. That's right, ANY other!

The Series will be great. Sure it will. But the real beauty here was sticking it to the team that gets everything handed to them. Beating the Goliath of the sporting world. Defeating the ogre, the bully, the oversized jackass, the monster, the monkey on our back.

Yeah, Red Sox Nation is going into a Shakespearean cathartic (sp?) exhale.

We won.

We finally, really, actually won.

Man, it feels good.

More tomorrow.


No No Nannette!

No posts since friday due to a single reason - the Sox. Be back in the swing of things after them. Sorry.

Yankees Suck.


The New Look?

Didn't really get a new look yet, just tweaked my template a little in an effort to make the viewing and load times a little easier. Anyway, now that my computer is back and raring to go (thanks to my main man, Slick), I will be trying to get back into a regular swing of posting daily. We'll see how long that lasts. At least I have two days in a row right now . . .

So, if you haven't already, go check out www.forcesofgood.com, read my column, a review I wrote on the comic Starman and lots of other cool stuff. Then circle back here and let me know what you think.

The next issue of Forces of Good will be premeiring at the beginning of November with new interviews, columns and reviews.


The Return of the Weekly 5 (Ver.1.3)

I'm back in computerland! Yeah! Here it is:

Scan it: The excellent new comic from writer wunderkint (sp?) Brian K. Vaughn, Ex Machina. This books rocks so hard it hurts. This guy is the genius behind Y the Last Man and his newest title is a full of the same passion and twisty-turny plot development. Take one part of the West Wing, add two parts super-hero action and a final dash of X-files like mystery and you have one sick comic.

Read it: Stephen King's The Dark Tower VII: The Dark Tower. Stop whatever it is you've been doing for the last 20 years, get to your local book seller and buy these books. Finishes like it started - strong and hard.

Listen to it: Cake's new album -- I've only heard a few tracks, but they stand up with all the rest of this band's classic sounds.

View it: Lost - best new show of this season or last. Or the one before that too, maybe - tied for my favorite show in recent history with The Shield. Yeah, it's that good.

Bookmark it: Browse on over to www.batmanbegins.com for all the latest info on the newest Batman movie. Including the sick-ass trailer featuring the truly demented Christian Bale as a truly disturbed young Bruce Wayne. This movie is going to blow every other comic book movie out of the water come Summer 2005. Check out the pic of Gary Oldman as a young Commissioner James Gordon!

That's it for now. Over the weekend, come on by and scan the new look I will be sporting.

Check you later! (Name that movie and win a DC "No-Prize"!)


My God, It's Been So Long . . .

So! My computer has bedeviled my friend's efforts to repair it for about two weeks - in fact it is still with him. This is just a breif update, the blog will be back on course, hopefully next week, when I get my computer back. In the meantime, head over to www.forcesofgood.com on Monday (10/4/04) to check out my column, "The Chop Socky Creature Feature."

Forcesofgood.com is a new pop culture e-magazine that I will be a regular contributor to and will feature interviews, articles, regular columns, reviews, and news about all the things we love about pop culture - be it movies, books, TV, comics, fashion, art or trends. So, if you are sick of reading whining internet nerds bitching about every little thing that they can bash, head on over to a new magazine with a new approach - let's celebrate the things we love, instead of trashing them and complaining about it all the time.

As ever, thanks for reading and I hope you take the time to check put my newest venture. If you go, come back here and let me know what you think of my column and the whole site.

Thanks, and I will be back with a vengeance next week!

Promises, promises . . .


Death to Technology

As I stated a week or so ago, my computer was trying to kill itself. It succeeded. I am having a friend do surgery on it and it is even resisting that! So, no post 'til I get it back in a week or so. Sorry, talk to you all soon.


The General @ Gabriels. Fri. 9.10.04. 9 PM

posted by jax

See the Music, Feel the Sounds

the ultimate in cosmic sounds and dragracing rhythms, Six Star General performs this Friday at Gabriels in Warren, RI. See the flyer above, designed, executed and posted by me. More tomorrow on fiction.

"What I'm doing isn't vengeance. It's punishment." -- Frank Castle, The Punisher


Monday's Thought Balloons (Comics Reviews) on Tuesday

Here is the first of the new weekly review installment. Enjoy. Find comics, read them, scan them, love them.

Rating Scale (based on the thought processes of Ash from The Evil Dead Trilogy):

1 out of 5 Boomsticks = total misfire - you suck, asshead.
2 out of 5 Boomsticks = dud - lotsa ammo, no boom
3 out of 5 Boomsticks = bang - Shop smart. Shop S-Mart!
4 out of 5 Boomsticks = deadshot - Hail to the King, Baby!
5 out of 5 Boomsticks = superfine - Filled with atoms and molecules, and things you primitive screwheads wouldn*t understand!

Avengers #500 and 501 - Marvel Comics
writes: Brian Michael Bendis
pencils: David Finch
inks: Danny Miki

The first two chapters of the "Disassembled" storyline that will see the end of the long running Marvel title. The opening of the story "Chaos" finds the Avengers relaxing in their headquarters when a supposedly dead teammate shows up at the front door. When that zombie-like ally explodes, killing another Avenger, Ant-man, Chaos ensues. Brutally attacked on multiple fronts, the Avengers quickly find themselves outnumbered, outgunned and outclassed. With more deaths promised and the resurrection of the team advertised with mostly new members in the November-shipping New Avengers, this story promises to have lasting effects on the entire Marvel universe.

Having only just started reading The Avengers during Geoff Johns' run on the title, I am not as emotionally attached to these characters as long-time fans. Bendis has received a lot of slack in the fan press and online for the quick and apparently uncalled for abuse to the team and the resulting deaths. Looked at by many as a quick gimmick storyline, designed to attract people with shock value only, the book reads differently to me. Not knowing a lot of the history of the team during its latest incarnation (this is the third series of the team, the original having been launched in 1963 under the reins of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby) I find that Bendis' story is gritty, intense, and pulse pounding. Normally a writer who depends on talking heads and slow moving character development, this is a departure for Bendis and shows his creative depth. Portraying classic heroes like Iron Man and Captain America as indecisive and confused is not a slight by the writer to those characters, but rather a more realistic take on how any person would react under such horrific conditions. When She-Hulk loses her cool and "hulks out" it is regressing the character and that's exactly the point. This is a calm and reasoning lawyer who all of sudden turns into a raging monster on par with her cousin David (the Incredible Hulk) Banner at his worst. And no one in their reviews seems to be pointing out the obvious -- if Tony (Iron Man) Stark can be made to appear drunk at the UN when the recovering alcoholic hasn't had a drink in years, don't you think that whoever is ultimately responsible for this vicious attack on the Avengers could have also drugged She-Hulk in the same manner, to cause her breakdown?

On the art side of the equation things are a little less clear. While I think that Finch is an above average artist and very good at big action scenes, he doesn't quite have the chops to pull off the emotional elements that are key to this story. Bendis would be better complemented by a more well rounded artist for such a big story. Marvel is really touting this as their big "event" story of 2004 and as such should have had a higher profile artist on the gig -- my pick would have been Bryan Hitch (regardless of his slow turn around time.) That being said, however, I have to commend Finch on the above-mentioned She-Hulk scenes (started in #500 and ended with aplomb by Captain America in #501) -- he pulled it off in spades. It's blurry with rage and chaotic beyond the call of duty.

All in all, I am really looking forward to the remainder of this story. Sure, everybody is sick of the death of characters just to sell books. But Bendis has never been about that kind of storytelling and I am confident that all of the destruction and mayhem are serving a bigger purpose. Bendis is a long term, big picture type of writer and for those readers who stick in for the long haul, the pay off is always worth the blood, sweat and tears that you put in.

4 out of 5 Boomsticks! (I reserve the right to downgrade this, if the last two parts of the story totally blow!)

Batman #631 - DC Comics
writes: Bill Willingham
pencils: Kinsun
inks: Aaron Sowd

Part of the massive, 3-month long "War Games" storyline, this is the pinnacle issue of Act 1. For those unfamiliar with the Batman books (including Detective Comics, Nightwing, Legends of the Dark Knight, Robin, Birds of Prey, and Catwoman) these "event" stories happen pretty much on a bi-yearly basis now * something so big going on that it carries over into all of the books and effects the lives of all the characters in the Batman Family. Last time around, Batman's alter-ego, billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne, was accused of murder and then became a fugitive of the law (check out the trade paperbacks Bruce Wayne: Murderer and Batman: Fugitive).

This year's macro-series finds the Batman operating mostly alone in Gotham, having alienated some of his most trusted allies and his partner, Robin, having given up his heroic mantle because of a promise to his father. When the devious Penguin unleashes a genetically altered Scarecrow on some of the other crime families in Gotham City, the ensuing power vacuum leaves the city open to a massive gang war. It's Russian mob vs. Asian street gangs vs. meta-freak. A bloodbath results and Batman has to do everything he can to hold the pieces together -- including trusting new allies that he normally wouldn't deign to speak to.

So far this storyline has been so-so to me. Admittedly, I have not read all of the 8 parts that made up the first act, I only read the main titles (Batman, Detective, Robin, and Nightwing.) But, in all fairness to the writers, I didn't need to read all the parts to follow the story fully - which is great when you consider the price of buying all the books. The flip side of that, however, is a proof to my "so-so" analysis - not enough important stuff is going on to justify the length of the story. Decompressed stories are great when the creators are exploring characters and their motivations, but this story is all about sweeping change to the criminal landscape in Gotham and Batman's role in that arena. So action is the key to the story, and Batman works best in those stories as a super-hero, not a detective. Another problem is the so-called "mystery" of this entire storyline -- the question of who started this gang war. If I'm right about who it is, I figured it out in the very first chapter (Batman: the 12-cent Adventure) and it didn't take a Batman-caliber computer to put it together. Hopefully, I'll be surprised at the end and the obvious deduction that I made is just a red herring.

The three things in the story so far that stand out as the better parts of the story are so buried beneath the machinations of the gangs and Batman's operatives, that they are almost overlooked. First, Batman's relationship with police Commissioner Jim Gordon has always been a classic comic element. But since Gordon's retirement from the force, Batman has been at best on a no harm, no foul-type of truce with the Gotham City Police Department and the new Commissioner Akins. This storyline is finally bringing the strain of that relationship to light. Second, the recent retirement of Robin and the much bally-hooed (bally-"booed" on a lot of the message boards) replacement by a female Robin also seems to be coming to an end, with the return of Tim Drake to the Robin outfit and some resolution to the strained relationship between Bruce and Tim.

Finally, the last element of this storyline that seems to be a goal of the writers is the outing of Batman. I don't mean that he's gay (although he seems to have more kids staying in that stately Wayne Manor, that Michael Jackson has at Neverland . . . ) but rather televised proof that Batman indeed exists. Where the caped crusader has always relied on the myth of his existence to scare criminals (a superstitious and cowardly lot), this new public revelation of him, in broad daylight no less, is bound to have dire consequences for his crime-fighting future. That's if the writers follow through with it. We'll see.

With 16 more issues to come in this gigantic story, I am not sure how much more the writers can stretch the gang war theme. They better have something big up their sleeves if they expect readers to stay tuned and commit the cash to follow the rest of the story. I didn't mention the art, because, while its not bad, it's just about competent and not much more -- basically, it doesn't rate mentioning one way or the other -- eh.

3 out of 5 Boomsticks.

So that's the first. Let me know what you think and more to come next week - and I promise, those'll be shorter!


The Weekly 5 Ver.1.2

Quick hits this week, a day late and a dollar short. Check it:

Scan it: Mythology by Alex Ross and Chip Kidd with photography by Geoff Spear. This is an retrospective coffee table book of painter Alex Ross's career, focusing exclusively on his work done for DC Comics. Unbelieveable. By it now. Try www.midtowncomics.com

Read it: This week I am recommending a classic, since I am in the middle of two books and don't want to recommend them until I am done. So, on weeks like this, I'll pick one of my favorites. This week: Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea. Nothing more to say.

Listen to it: I am really digging this song that's getting a ton of airplay by the band Coheed and Cambria - the song is pretty good (not great) but the background on the band rocks - all of their songs and records are about fictional siblings from outer space and their misadventures through the universe. Sci-fi Rock!

View it: Two picks here. First, go see Hero right now. Drop whatever you're not doing and see it. Beautiful and kick-ass at the same time. Second, just picked up the DVD Special Edition of The Manchurian Candidate (the original with Sinatra.) Forgot how much I love Frankenheimer.

Bookmark it: Already mentioned above, but I have to rec www.midtowncomics.com - the best full service comic shop in the world. I haven't lived in NYC for nearly 5 years, but I still get the majority of my books there. Great website, better store. Go see 'em and let them feed your need for pop culture!

That's it, Captain - I'm givin' her all she's got!


Wanted to add one thing here . . . this is the cover to the October-shipping DC Comics title, "Toe Tags" drawn by Bernie Wrightson and written by zombie-miestro, George "Dawn of the Dead" Romero! Rock on my Zombie Friend!

posted by jax

Labor Pains

So the end of summer is upon us and the weekend is loaded with parties - should be coolio. Monday will be the first of a weekly comic review section (in addition to Sunday's Weekly 5) - they'll be quick two or three paragraphs, probably of two or three books that came out the previous week, plus a trade paperback review. I need to be writing more and since I read about a billion comics, I figure it's a good way to get the writing in on something I'm already reviewing in my head anyway.

So, stay tuned . . . stop by the corral on Monday for the Roundup Review. I'm probably going to come up with a better title than that . . . that's weak.


Death by Computer

I seriously believe that my computer is trying to kill itself. I have run every virus protocol and protective scan on the thing imaginable. It runs fine and fast for weeks on end and then, out of the blue, disaster strikes and the thing wigs out!

Anyway, because of said proclivity towards self-destruction, I have to be brief tonight. So, two quick things: Comic of the week: Y the Last Man - the story of the last man on Earth, this book continually rocks it out. This week's issue focuses on the last man's sister, Hero. Gripping. Seriously, check it out. The first two storylines (from about 2 1/2 years ago) are collected in very affordable trade paperbacks. From DC.

Second, my brother's and friend's band, the newly dubbed Six Star General, are playing at Gabriel's in Warren, RI on Friday night, September 10th. Get your groove on at www.sixstargeneral.com -- tell 'em the roadie sent you.

More tomorrow.


DC Direct's Upcoming Alex Ross-designed Justice League figures - pictured here (from l to r) are Sinestro, Cheetah, Bizarro and the Flash. Now that is a Legion of Doom.
Posted by Hello

Legion of Doomed

Picked up the DVD release of The Challenge of the Superfriends Season 1 tonight at the illustrious Targ'et. If you recall this classic Saturday morning 'toon from the late 70s/early 80s you know how cool it was. The best of the best for super-heroes and the baddest of the bad villains like Scarecrow, Solomon Grundy and the ultra-cool Black Manta! This really made these DC comic characters household names to legions of kids from my generation and the DVD set (at a smooth $24.99) makes for great nostalgia. If you have kids, let them see what cartoons used to be like, before everything was a toy line commercial and imported from Japan. I love the current Justice League cartoon on Cartoon Network, but it just doesn't have the trippy bizarre-ness of the old Super Friends show. These were really the best episodes (no Wendy and Marvin or Wonder Twins to sell the show out) and featured really intricate and sometimes gruesome stories for Saturday morning viewing.

So, whether you love comics or not, these are worth a look, purely for nostalgia and the wow factor.

"Deep beneath the murky waters of a swamp, the Legion of Doom plots . . . " voice over Master.


Sleepy Time

no time to write . . . must sleep. Oh, one thing. Last night's MTV VMA's Sucked Ass. Period.
nighty night.


The Weekly 5

Here it is, the first in an ongoing weekly series, coming to you directly from the blog-o-sphere, on Sundays in the post meridian. These might not be new, they might not be old; it’s possible they’re ancient or not even out yet. But anything here is wearing on my brain and ready for mass consumption. So here they are, a list of entertainment/information/etc presumptive suggestions. The first of The Weekly 5 :

Read It: Greg Rucka – any of his books fit for the week, but the most recent that I read is what I’m talking about. A Fistful of Rain (the title is a line from a Warren Zevon song) is all about repression, anger and vengeance. Set against the life of a rock and roller and the fame that comes with success, this is a dark and fast-paced thriller. As usual, the writer knows how to write great female leads and Mim (the lead in this one) is right at the top of the list. Rucka also writes a lot of comics, but he was a crime/thriller novelist first, and his books still pack more punch than his Eisner Award winning comics – that’s saying a lot.

Scan It: Marvel Comics’ and Joss Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men – Mentioned on this very site earlier in the week in a sort-of review, I think it’s worthwhile to list again here. Yeah, it’s that good.

Listen To It: Beastie Boys - To the 5 Burroughs – wasn’t a huge fan of the album the first time I listened to it and it still lacks some of the verbal hash-slinging of Paul’s Boutique, or even Check Your Head, but the more I listen, the more it seeps into my bones. Worth it.

View It: (this is a double shot) IFC’s showing of the documentary Frazetta: Painting with Fire – while I am not a huge fantasy reader or fan of the art style, Frazetta’s obviously the master. That being said, this doc gives a casual fan or the most die-hard follower an amazing perspective on the man and his work. Coming out next week on DVD, check The Punisher. Not the best comic movie ever, not a great action movie, but Tom Jane’s performance is dead on (no pun intended) and he is Frank Castle. The movie’s true to the character as well, and that’s getting a lot for any adaptation of the written word to moving pictures. Plus, with the DVD release, you get a limited edition Punisher comic by writer supreme Garth Ennis (whose comic issues the film was based on.)

Bookmark It: www.comicbookresources.com has all the comicbook and comic movie news that’s fit to upload. A regular haunt that I visit daily and if you have any interest in comics, you should be there too. The weekly columns are nothing to scoff at either – insightful, informative and damn entertaining.

So, there it is. The first of the weekly spin. It turned into a mostly comic-themed first salvo, but I promise diversity and challenges in the weeks and months to come. This was a warm-up and came right off that first thin layer of cerebral tissue.

“Burn,” – Superman to Mongel, in the classic Alan Moore-penned Superman Annual #11


Fright Night

Friday night, weekend's here. Busy, as usual. The humidity is back, turning up like a bad penny. Going to the Roger Williams Zoo tomorrow, should be fun. Otherwise quiet. May start another piece of fiction on here on Sunday night. Or a weekly review type thing - not quite sure yet. Either way, check back with me for more tomorrow and/or Sunday.

fade to black . . .


Buffy Pryde

So, Joss Whedon (writer/director/creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel) has recently begun writing a comic title for Marvel Comics, The Astonishing X-Men. One of a myriad number of titles featuring Marvel's merry mutants, this obviously is a headliner for the company and a great coup for comics. Whedon is extremely popular and fans of his TV shows rival Trekkies and comic-geeks alike as obsessive/compulsive fanatics.

A confirmed comic-geek myself, and also a big fan of Whedon's TV work, I was not as huge a fan of his comic work (his first effort was Fray from Dark Horse Comics, and while good, it never really caught me.) But, with his current run on this brand new X-title, I am a convert to the Word of Whedon.

Like anyone who has ever been a comics reader, the X-Men are a staple of the industry and something everyone reads at least for some period of their lives (usually their teens and maybe in their early 20s, but then move on to more "mature" titles.) There are of course, still Marvel Zombies out there who devour anything X-related and have never stopped collecting their myriad adventures.

Of late, however, the X-Men have gained new prominence in the entertainment world with two smash hit movies and a very successful series of comic adventures penned by luminaries like Grant Morrison (New X-Men), Mark Millar and Brian Michael Bendis (Ultimate X-Men), and now Whedon on Astonishing.

Whedon has said many times before that the team dynamic and chumminess of his characters in the Buffy-verse were based on the model that Chris Claremont and John Byrne laid out in their seminal run on Uncanny X-Men in the early 80s.

And reading his most recent comic work, it is obvious he has a love for these characters and their family-esque roots. These are outcasts that have no one but each other. All of the action and wise-ass quipping that goes on – the sexy panels and amazing artwork of John Cassaday – are all secondary to the emotional bonds that hold these characters together. That’s the X-Men that I remember and that I love.

It’s nice to see them back where they belong without being retro’d, reduxed or rebooted. This is fresh storytelling that just knows what’s at the heart of the characters and how to bring it to the surface.

So, if you haven’t checked out comics in years (or ever) and you like the things Whedon did on TV, run out to your local comic shop or Borders and pick up Astonishing X-Men. Conveniently enough, this week saw the release of a Marvel Must Have: Astonishing X-Men, which collects the first three issues of Whedon’s run. Issue #4 was also released and if you are an old time X-fan, avoid the variant cover, as a big secret is revealed – a pleasant one in my humble opinion.

So, until tomorrow night – snikt!


Tokyo Babylon

If you aren't already watching it on a regular basis, your ass should be parked in front of the cathode ray tube whenever Dave Atell's Insomniac graces its screen. Comedy Central's lineup of shows is getting better and better with every year it's on cable and this show is in my opinion one of its best.

The latest reason to get on board with this show is the Insomniac Tokyo Special: Sloshed in Translation. For those unfamiliar with comedian Atell's show, he goes to a city at random, hits the first bar he finds after performing stand-up and proceeds to careen around the city from bar to bar to late night hotspot to odd stores and stranger places until dawn. The ensuing line-up of freaks, drunkards and cantankerous humans that he meets is not only entertaining but downright hilarious.

So, with that in mind and with other foreign countries' cities under his belt, Atell heads to the strangest and most science fiction-like city in the world, Tokyo, Japan. There (in a special hour long episode) Atell eats poisonous blowfish, visits a 24-hour filth/porn network, attends a Wooden Penis Celebration, takes a Kendo (bamboo sword fighting) lesson and hangs out with one of the funniest group of men you have ever seen -- Japan's version of the Guardian Angels.

Truly, this is the crowning achievement of Atell's hilarious exploits and will surely convert any nay-sayer to the side of this brilliant show. Watch it and learn.

If you aren’t taken in by the late-night hijinks of this episode, then you probably shouldn’t be reading this blog! You're missing the point. . .

Having said all that, I bid you goodnight.


Sunday Night Blues

F******K! And I don't mean firetruck! I just wrote out two semi-depth-ful movie reviews of flicks I caught this week (nothing new -- Van Helsing and Nighthawks -- but they were fun to write) and I went to publish and crap-ass AT&T disconnected me and I lost the blog entry. Eh!

Anyway, that sucks, but I willl write tomorrow night, maybe something more insightful - I am wiped now . . .

Technology is your enemy


The New Avengers - Coming Soon
Posted by Hello

Lost Time

So . . . I was stuck in Texas (don't ask) with no internet access and I just got back late on Wednesday night. I know I am slacking on entries and more importantly finishing off my story, but I promise the conclusion to Open Wounds tomorrow and more substantive entries over the next few weeks. I have some things in mind and I am going to start getting some reviews laid out as well. So, join me if you will tomorrow night, for the conclusion to Harlan's harrowing happenings.

Oh, and check out the pic below - it's a teaser shot for the new Avengers line-up. After the current story line "Disassembled" wraps up, lots of former Avengers will be formerly living, so the team takes on some new blood. Spider-man and Wolverine being two of them. And if my sources are correct - Luke Cage Powerman is another! Sweet Christmas!

As Gordon Gekko would say, "Talk at you tomorrow."


Promises Kept

So, I promised a little fiction tonight, to start week two in the blog-o-shpere, and I am about to deliver. Below, please find the first chapter in a week-long short story, titled Open Wounds.

Chapter 1

The poignant stench of blood was thick in the air. Harlan sat Indian style on the floor in the bedroom, his back against the wall under the lone window. His eyes were closed and the gun was nearly slipping from his wet palm. He wasn't sure how much time had passed since he'd moved.

Alex slouched in the armchair in the corner of the room. The hole on the left of her forehead stared at the boy as if it were a circus freak's third eye. A lone trickle of blood traced the contour of his aunt's cheekbone.

Wet tracks of tears traced their way through the gunpowder on Harlan's cheek. His ears still rang from the shots fired in the small room. He tried to listen for noises in the house, but he couldn't discern any if there were any to hear.

Nothing. Not a thing.

Henry lay on the floor directly across from Harlan, partially blocking the door. His uncle's wheelchair was tipped over on the other side of the door, in the dark hallway leading to the stairs. The stairs led to the door. But Harlan couldn't go there.

Not yet.

Two separate puddles of blood were slowly spreading beneath the body of his uncle. They were dark red - almost maroon - in the late afternoon sun that streamed into the room through the ragged hand-sewn curtains. Harlan could not stop looking at a fly that had landed in one of the puddles. A single wing fluttered madly on the fly's back; it was stuck and now struggling to escape the feast it had found.

For what seemed like the first time, Harlan felt the weight of the gun in his hand. He almost threw it away, repulsed, but stopped. It would have made a noise. Thudded on the floor. He couldn't have that. Not now.

No. Now he had to think. Think clearly.

Will was out there. He couldn't hear him, but he knew. He knew Will was out there.

Somewhere on the farm, the man who'd killed the only parents Harlan had ever known was waiting for him. Waiting to finish the job and kill Harlan Miller.

So, tune in tomorrow (hopefully) for Chapter 2!


Copyright Ryan Jackson, Six Star General Posted by Hello

Oh Yeah!

See my brother and friends perform live, next Saturday at the Safari Lounge in Providence, RI. Six Star General rockin' it out on stage . . .

Uncle Sam under the influence of the current Administration (by Alex Ross, copyright Ross, The Village Voice) Posted by Hello

Sunday Bloody Sunday

The First week in the Blog-o-Sphere is done and gone! I made it with out the Man censoring me! Just kidding . . . I am glad that I was able to start this up and I am already having a ton of fun with this. It has helped to force me to get on the computer and write something daily (however banal it may be!) and that is a great step forward for my lazy ass.

So, I know I promised fiction by the weekend, but since I have tomorrow off, I am not counting the weekend as over and will post something tomorrow on that front.

As I sign off for the first week, I just want to say thanks to those of you who have stopped by, read my nonsense and took the time to check out the site. Also, a special thanks to those who have left comments, you let me know I wasn't shouting into the empty darkness.

I leave you with this kick-ass Alex Ross image from the cover of the Village Voice from earlier in the year - it deserves a wider audience.

Tomorrow - fiction . . .


Black Sabbath

Tonight . . . bbq, beer, four squares and a small little Pac-Man tournament among friends - should get ugly.

Oh yeah, and Rick James died, Biiiiitch!

"I'm Rick James, Biitch!" -- Dave Chappelle


Slow News Day . . .

Still at work on a Friday afternoon, but looking forward to a long weekend, since Monday in RI is the completely politically incorrect holiday: Victory over Japan Day!

The only State in the Union to still celebrate the surrender of a people who we dropped nukler (as Bu$h would say) destruction on, RI proves itself to have the longest penchant for "rubbing it in," as well as the state with the longest name (officially, Rhode Island and the Providence Plantations.)

Before I sign off for the day, and probably the night, one suggestion for TV viewing this weekend: ESPN's X Games X in Los Angeles started live last night with a few events, best of which was the Vert Skate competition. Not as exciting as previous years, but still a lot of competition, the most exciting moments of the three round competition was watching Sandro Dias try to pull a 900 during competition. Not in the Best Trick competition, but the Vert Competition! He didn't get it, but it was pretty damn exciting watching his 3rd run when he came damn close. The X Games hold a special interest for Providence residents since the first year of the games and the following 2 or 3 were held in the Renaissance City.

Anyway, my suggestion is watch the latest X Games competition -- the mega huge skate slalom jump (I can't remember the official name of the comp, but you get the idea) - this is a huge downhill snowboarding like wooden ramp that skaters come hurtling down, jump a 70 foot chasm and then land on another wooden ramp. The practices sessions they previewed last night were sick. This airs live on Sunday @ 4:00 PM on ESPN. It should prove explosive. My money's on Bob Burnquist to tear it apart.

"Cry havoc, and release the dogs of war!"


poster for Six Star General's f/k/a Space Heater Posted by Hello

Best Show Ever?

So, quick entry before I hit the z-zone. Two shows that need mentioning. The first I have been on board with for a while: VH-1's Best Week Ever - it is stellar. Lots of snide comments from unknowns who are sick of, sickened by and totally amused by the masses as I am. Where else can you get a rundown on the latest celebrity flaws immediately following a segment on the Democratic Convention? Check it out on the web at www.vh1.com

Second is a show I just started watching this week, but I was able to catch two episodes and am now hooked: Rescue Me starring Dennis Leary on FX. The Job was one of the top ten shows of the last ten years, so it is great to see Leary and his co-creators applying the same formula to his latest venture. A perfect blend of dak humor and gritty realism (no, I did not swipe that quote from David Ansen, it just sounds like I did.) As was the case with The Job, Leary has again surrounded himself with a superb ensemble cast of relatively unknown actors. Watch it, Dweezil.

Finally, go to www.sixstargeneral.com for some superb listening of rock. This is my brother Kyle's and my friend Slick's band. They are playing soon in a city near you. Or at least in Providence. I do their posters/flyers. Once I can figure out how to post one here, I'll do it.

End transmission.

Weekend = T-1

Looking forward to the weekend and some downtime. After a kickass wedding last weekend and a full recovery day on Sunday, this week I want to get some shite done. Some friends dropping by before they head to the Newport FolkFest to see Wilco will be the big event. Otherwise, the plan is to hang, get some writing done and maybe drop some science on eBay.

As promised, by the end of the weekend I am going to post the first part of a short story that I wrote a few years back. I am going to revisit and rewrite it, to make it fit a serialized format for the blog. Hopefully, some of you will enjoy it and I would appreciate any feedback. Look for it Saturday or Sunday.

Finally, my DVD pick for the week is Hellboy. Whether you are into the comic or not (hell, even if you never heard of it) this is a fun little movie with lots of character. Ron Perlman is king in the title role - one of the best performances of the year. The DVD is great with a ton of special features including TV/Flash-type versions of creator Mike Mignola's original comics. One of the comics included is my personal favorite Pancakes. Read and watch this mini-comic before you watch the film - in about three minutes you get the entire motivation of the creator and a real insight into what Hellboy is all about.

So, until later . . .

"Behind this door . . . ancient evil." -- Abraham Sapien, Hellboy


Working the System

Slowly working my way around the nooks and crannies of the blog world. I have made some minor adjustments to the page (check the new title/logo) and by the end of the week I should have some links up as well as some reviews.

As I said earlier in the day, I wanted to start a little interaction with the outside world, so taking a cue from a friend's blog and tweaking it a bit to my personality, here's your

"What If . . . " Scenario of the Week: Your stranded alone on a desert island, but miraculously you have been able to take a few things with you.

  • What single book do you take with you? Novel, non-fiction, reference guide, whatever - two covers and pages in the middle
  • What single DVD do you bring? You have one of those handheld DVD veiwers with you with a nigh unlimited battery
  • What single CD do you bring with you? No box sets, but double albums are allowed

So, there you have it, the first of the "What Ifs . . ." - an oldy, but a classic. Have fun with it. Expect some fiction by the end of the week.

Hugo! Matches!

Day Two in the Blog-o-Sphere!

I'm back for another day. The blog survived the night and countless hits (well, a couple of hits at least.) Anyway, I am at work and burning time, so more tonight as I may start the first of a series of "what if? " scenarios . . .


Welcome to Ryan Jackson's Tales of Terror

I have finally jumped on board the Blog machine. Hear me daily, hourly, maybe even monthly. I will regale you with exciting and mundane tales alike. It will be a smash hit across the cyberverse.

So, this is my spot in the void. I thought I would claim it and try and force my self to do a little more writing and some philosophizing. Come back in a day or two and I should have some actual entries to entertain and amuse. I am hoping to even throw in some short story work; maybe even a serialized novella or something.

Anyway, this is it, my new blog, come visit, stay awhile, look around, see what you might find buried under the bodies. Don't mind that smell, it's just coming up from the cellar. Thanks for stopping in!

Hugo! Air freshener!