Monday, November 26, 2012

The Incredible Hulk #1

Hulk is strongest one there is! Unfortunately, his origin is not as strong.

Read more!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Brave and the Bold #54

Listen to the jive, if you are un-square!

Read more!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

VLOG: 11-17-12 - Skyfall

Liz and Linkara look at the latest James Bond film! ‎ Read more!

Friday, November 16, 2012

I can't put the storyline stuff on a DVD

Many people have been asking in the comments section for the State of the Wall post about putting the storylines of the show onto DVD. Since this has also been suggested elsewhere when people have wanted to see the storyline stuff together, I figured it's probably worth a longer explanation.

While putting together a compilation video of the storyline stuff might be a good idea, it's just not possible to do for DVDs. Why? Well, here are a few reasons:

1. I don't have the original files. That isn't the case for ALL the storyline bits, especially more recent ones, but that's only because I have the hard drive space now to allow me to save backups of the original raw files. However, during the Mechakara storyline? I don't have any of the original raws from those. Sorry, but I needed the hard drive space and the idea of putting any of this stuff on DVD was not something I considered.

Now, some might wonder why I don't just put the clips from the episodes themselves, but you've got to understand - I didn't save those episodes in HD. They were widescreen, yes, but they were saved at 960 x 540. That means that if they were put on a DVD, they would look like crap. One could say they ALREADY look like crap, but I mean they'd look like bootleg quality. See, if it's just some flash video on the web, the quality isn't really all THAT important, but for a DVD release? Yeah, no. These days I save in 1280 x 720 - not great, but closer to DVD quality than the older episodes.

But the lack of the original raw files also has another problem with it...

2. I use copyrighted music in A LOT of the early storyline bits. Hell, I'm STILL using it. The Thing-inspired storyline? Used bits of Ennio Morricone's score. See, here's the thing - most movies companies don't really give a damn about us. We're not SELLING anything that uses their material - it's a video on the web and a lot of the time it actually gets people to go out and buy movies or comics or etc. that we've talked about, since there is a market out there for crappy b-movies or the like.

But the thing is that the instant you start using their clips without permission in something that's actually SOLD? Yeah, we'd get slapped with a cease and desist pretty damn quickly. You'll notice on the Angry Video Game Nerd DVDs that any time he used a clip from a movie in one of the episodes, it's been edited out for the DVD release.

And by that same token, A LOT of the music I've used in storylines DOES NOT BELONG TO ME. The Power Rangers theme? I've used that TONS of times and you can be damn certain that if I tried to sell a DVD that had it in there Saban would destroy me. And because I don't have the original raw files for the episodes, I can't put in different music. The only way I could do that is if I redubbed all the dialogue. The good news is that you may have noticed that I AM moving away from copyrighted music from the storyline segments and using stuff from MusicLoops more, which I AM allowed to use in movies or the like sold on DVDs (it's part of the licensing agreement for the music), but that only means I could use more recent storyline stuff where I still have the original files and it's a pain in the ass to replace a lot of that music so it still fits the mood of the video.

3. This is less important than the technical or legal stuff in the previous 2 reasons, but it goes to a thing about the show. See, for the longest time, many people asked why I don't just separate the storyline stuff from the reviews. Most people don't ask that anymore either because they've accepted that after 200 episodes it's part of the show or because most of the time it's only at the end of the video, they can just shut it off and not care about it anymore.

However, there is a reason why I didn't do it to begin with. The simple fact is that the storylines are really meant to be an homage to the rather ludicrous and awesome nature of superhero comics, with robots and time travel and alternate universes and villanis and etc. They go hand in hand WITH comics. Devoid of the reviews, they're just me playing around in different costumes with toy phasers and a cardboard robot. While I haven't always matched the storylines to the comics I've reviewed (I still praise the Dark Nella Saga on the Nostalgia Chick for having the events in that story match up to the things she's reviewing), I do TRY to do that and they go hand in hand. I don't feel the conclusion to the Mechakara arc has as much substance if I don't have me talking about Power Rangers. I don't think the Entity arc's conclusion works as well without an explanation of MissingNo. (though that one IS arguable, since the story WAS more about horror than it was the Pokémon connection), but the Star Trek 2 or 3 storylines, in my opinion, don't work as well without the context of what they're homaging. And while the current storyline is a bit more vague with what it's referencing, I think people WILL get it once we reach the end of this arc and you see the franchise it's tied to in February.

Separated from the reviews, the storyline doesn't work as effectively, in my opinion. From a technical standpoint, the pacing doesn't work as well when you just cram them all together and not spread them out like I try to do.

And that's pretty much it. If I do make a DVD where I review some public domain comics, I'll probably put in its own DVD-exclusive storyline, but for now, that's why I'm not going to put the storyline from the regular show on DVD. And if you're just lost on the storyline, fortunately there are people who can help. I recommend checking the AT4W Plot Guide to show what episodes have plot-relevant material. ‎ Read more!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Tales of Suspense #39

Tony Stark - Billionaire playboy genius philanthropist... who is obsessed with transistors.

Read more!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

State of the Wall: 11/7/12

I've decided to stop labeling the general update posts "Odds and Ends" mostly because I've run out of cute new names for them.

I also know that I usually save this for the end of an AT4W schedule period, but since some of this concerns December, I figure I might as well get this out of the way now as opposed to later.

Check under the cut to see what's coming up!

Upcoming Episodes
As per usual, here's the list of upcoming episodes, including the rest of Secret Origins Month and the schedule for December and January. As always, the schedule is subject to change for any number of reasons.

11/12 – Tales of Suspense #39
11/19 – The Brave and the Bold #54
11/26 – The Incredible Hulk #1
12/3 – Superman’s Christmas Adventure
12/10 – Archie’s Christmas Stocking
12/17 – Teen Titans #13: A Swingin’ Christmas Carol
12/24 – Batman: Noel (Yes, I know it's supposed to be good. I haven't read it yet, so if it doesn't have any joke fodder, I'll replace it with something else, but I have an episode that'll be coming on Christmas, for crying out loud and we're going to have some holiday cheer)
12/31 – The Next 15 Screw-Ups of Atop the Fourth Wall
1/7 – Kamandi at Earth’s End #3
1/14 – Raver #1
1/21 – Transformers #31
1/28 – Happy Days #2

History of Power Rangers
As per usual, no the series is not over with. Storyline stuff over the summer is what prevented me from working on it during that time and storyline stuff is what's going to be keeping me from working on it over the next 2-3 months. I have not advanced any farther in Mystic Force than I have before, mostly because of Longbox of the Damned and because November needs to be an off-period for me to relax after so much storyline stuff.

2013 will have shorter storylines than the previous few years to give me a chance to breathe before I have to worry about more, so after the Gunslinger arc concludes in February, I'll be able to throw myself back into History of Power Rangers, possibly in the hopes of FINISHING the dang thing (at least up until the series that we're up to at that point), but I promise nothing.

Commercial Bumpers
You may have noticed in the Flash Comics #1 video that there wasn't a standard commercial bumper that we've been having over the last few months, just the title card. Mostly this was done for time reasons since I had to get ready for Youmacon and I had run out of bumpers that I prerecorded. Like so many other series that require original content for such a long period of time, it's hard to think of something original EVERY time on the show, but I don't want to come across as lazy by just reusing an old bumper.

So here's my question to the fans: IS that okay? Would you prefer I always have something original there or can I reuse the old bumpers that we've been using? Or would you just prefer the title card method? Another idea that was recently put forth by a fan was asking for fan-donated commercial bumpers, which I'm not against, but I'm not entirely certain what to ask for in that regard, other than something no longer than 20 seconds that basically says "We'll be Right Back" and "We're Back Now." But yes, I want to hear people's thoughts on this.

Longbox of the Damned
October was an interesting time, especially with the premiere of Longbox of the Damned. I am VERY happy to report that Longbox was a critical and financial success for me, meaning I want to do it again next year! It was, admittedly, a bit stressful as I was trying to find my footing with it AND I had to deal with storyline stuff at the same time, meaning that I was writing and filming new episodes of Longbox DURING October, which I want to avoid next year, but that shouldn't be TOO difficult with the ideas I have in mind.

In addition, because it was a financial success, that means I want to try doing it outside of the Halloween season as a test, preferably around June or so so it can still stand at Halloween as its own thing. And because, I admit, this extra one is, well, extra, there's also the matter of what topic to explore. For the moment, I'm inclined to go with "Rise of the Marvel Zombies," since the Marvel Zombies episode has proven to be the most popular episode of Longbox of the Damned in terms of the view counts and because I'd like the regular season of Longbox to explore a wide variety of comics.

The idea of "Rise of the Marvel Zombies" would be to spotlight EVERY comic the Marvel Zombies have appeared in, from all of the mini-series to even stuff like Exiles, which had a brief storyline that featured a zombie Wolverine head, perhaps even to Deadpool stuff with Headpool. I feel that way we'd get a bit of variety even when talking about a specific topic like Marvel Zombies. What are everyone's thoughts on this idea?

Harvey Finevoice Album
I also mentioned in the recent Q&A from Youmacon that I'm interested in making a Harvey Finevoice album, particularly a Christmas album as the holiday season approaches. The problem with this is that I don't want it to be an A Capella album, meaning I need background music to go along with these tunes.

Many people have suggested getting our old pal Skitch to help with that, but the thing is that Skitch has his own life (and job) outside of providing music to several TGWTG producers and I've already got him on commission for something coming up and I don't think he'd be able to put that together in time. The good news is that any album I put together would probably include "If You Should Want the Moon," since that song comes from the black and white B-movie "The Beatniks," and that film already fell into the public domain and I can see no attempt to hold the copyright it and the music made for it.

Several people have suggested sending me karaoke tracks from their own CDs and the like to work with it. That would be great... except there's a teensy bit of a problem - I'm pretty sure it's illegal for me to record my own singing TO those karaoke tracks and then reselling them, since the karaoke tracks aren't meant for resale purposes, even when used in this manner. That might not be the case for all of it, but I would almost guarantee that it's the case for most of them.

The good news is that most classic Christmas music is public domain anyway, it's just I would need to find public domain instrumental accompaniment for it. This is where I'm once again asking for advice from people - be it the talented musicians out there who would like to talk to me about recording something with them and splitting profits or just that they know a source of public domain music that I could use (theoretically would have this stuff, but they seem to have revised how their site works so it's not JUST public domain material anymore there). But yeah, that's something I'd like to hear from you guys about.

Speaking of the public domain and stuff I'd like to sell to you guys, I've mentioned before that I'd like to put together a DVD of episodes for sale. The problem with the show is the same problem you have with ANY of the Channel Awesome shows being put on DVD - movies, TV shows, and yes, comic books are copyrighted material and while we can usually be pretty confident about our work being protected under Fair Use for videos on the internet, less so when we're actually directly selling a product that FEATURES parts of that copyrighted material.

Fortunately, like movies and TV shows, there are plenty of comic books that have entered the public domain. Neutro is one of them, for example. What I'd like to hear is ideas from people about DVD content aside from a few DVD-exclusive episodes - you know, special features and the like. I'd also like to hear if there are some older comics that you'd love to see me do reviews on and if anyone would be interested in a remake of the Neutro episode done with modern pacing and new jokes and the like. I figure not, but I thought I'd throw that out there, anyway. Once again, I open the floor for suggestions.

Upcoming Conventions
And finally, having gotten back from Youmacon, that was the last convention for 2012 (as far as I can recall). 2013, however, sees me as attending quite a few conventions, one of the other reasons I'll probably be scaling back my storyline stuff for the year. Here's the current list:

-MAGFest: January 3rd - 6th in National Harbor, Maryland. As per usual, the annual Music and Gaming Festival will see me and a crap-ton of other TGWTG producers attending! I hear that this year Brad Jones will be coming, though don't quote me on that. Doug will probably not be making an appearance, but that's not surprising considering he has his own sizeable convention load next year.

-GatoCon: February 16th - 17th in Kingsville, Texas. I'll be coming to Texas for the first time and I'll be joined by MarzGurl and Obscurus Lupa!

-MythiCon: August 23rd - 25th in Orlando, Florida. Also a first for me is a Florida convention! As far as I know, I'm the only contributer going, but that might change as time goes on.

I can probably presume I'll be going to Youmacon again come next November, but I don't want to assume anything right out of the gate. I'd certainly love to come back again if they want me, though!

Conventions I'm working on: I'm looking into going to ACEN in 2013 and possibly MomoCon in March, but nothing solid is on the table right now. I would LOVE to come to ConnectiCon, since Doug and Team Four Star tend to do those and they have nothing but praise, but usually I don't go to conventions unless I'm invited.

Now, finally I have a question for you guys. As you know, I did AniMinneapolis and MetaCon this year, both being Minnesota conventions and therefore easy for me to get to. However, I probably have to skip MetaCon this year because it's just two days after I get home from MythiCon and I won't be in any state to do conventions again. However, they've also extended invitations to me for AniMinneapolis 2013 (June 28-30) and Anime Midwest (July 5-7 in Chicago). We have a similar problem here in that both conventions are pretty much back to back with each other. The problem stems from trying to get additional videos out during this time period AND writing another live show, which I always want to do at conventions. Theoretically I COULD do it, but it's extra stressful. What I want to know is do people have a preference for one over the other or would you prefer for me to do both and I'll just figure out something to do for that period?

Once again, the floor is open for people's thoughts. Thanks once again and I look forward to hearing what you all have to say!

Read more!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Bride of AT4W Live!

Linkara attends Youmacon 2012 and does a live show!

Following the live show, there was a Q&A! ‎ Read more!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Flash Comics #1

The fastest man alive! ...until the other Flashes came along, anyway.

Read more!