Wednesday, 24 December 2014

DVD Review: DeadBall (2011)

Baseball Splatter Comedy
Once Jubeh Yakyu was a teenage baseball prodigy, destined for stardom. But when he accidentally killed his father with a super-powerful baseball pitch, Jubeh abandoned baseball and became the most feared juvenile delinquent in Japan.
 After a wild rampage of mayhem, murder and dropping televisions on people, Jubeh was caught and thrown into the infamous Pterodactyl Reformatory.
 And the only way he's getting out is to put together a baseball team and lead them to victory.

Do you like sports movies?

Do you like prison sports movies where a defiant rebel with a troubled past has to lead a team of misfits to glory?

Do you like Japanese prison sports movies where a defiant rebel and his team of violent misfits are forced to play in a  Baseball league run by Nazis, against a team of mass-murdering psychotic schoolgirls? 

You might like "DeadBall" then. 

  For , I dunno, the first five minutes or so you might think you're watching a normal sports movie as a teenage boy practises baseball pitches with his aging father, while the younger brother looks on with hero worship in his eyes.
 But then the youngster leaps about a mile into the air and unleashes a  fiery missile that turns's dad's face into a bloody pulp. That sets the tone for the rest of the film:  Over the top violence, and a procession of sports film, prison film and delinquent film cliches lining up to get a slap in the mouth and their nipples twisted, all done with daft humour and a knowing wink at the audience.

 There's a  fight between Jubeh and Headmistress Ishihara like something out of an "Itchy and Scratchy" cartoon, for instance. Then there's the way Jubeh's cellmate Four Eyes runs through the team's various misdemeanors (Using TNT in a boxing match and so forth) before going on to explain why the girls of St. Black Dahlia High School scare the shit out of him. And the baseball match itself is an utter bloodbath.

 "DeadBall" is not a subtle film. Not even close. It's the sort of absurd gorefest only the Japanese seem able to produce. The small matter of the effects being a bit crap just adds to the enjoyment.
 I loved it.

If you've ever wanted to see a cross between "Shaolin Soccer" and "Ilsa: She-wolf Of The SS" then check out "DeadBall"

 Time for some screenshots.   I'm not posting any of the bloody bits.
Jubeh arrives at his new home. 
Yes, he is wearing a poncho.
No, I don't know why.
It's not exactly the most bizarre thing in this film. 

Jubeh's new friend - the gentle Four Eyes.

Ilsa the warden really enjoys her job. Especially the cavity searches.

Headmistress Ishihara has some interesting political leanings.
And a sidekick who is creepy-looking as all hell.

 The demure young ladies of St. Black Dahlia high school introduce themselves 

Interesting choice of uniform.

Trailer here if you're interested.

 That's all folks. 


Monday, 22 December 2014

At Last! A Christmas Song I Actually Like!

 I don't get on very well with Christmas songs. Most of them are too twee for my tastes and there's usually a distinct absence of  power chords. 
 Would it surprise you to learn that the only Christmas songs I really like are Slade's "Merry Xmas Everybody" and TSO's take on "Carol Of The Bells"?

Up until now. 

 White Pigeon are a not-entirely serious bunch of British Hard-Rockers from Guildford, best described as "A bit like The Darkness without the eyewatering vocals", and the only rock band ever to do a song about squash.  

This week they release their attempt on the Christmas charts.

 It might be bordering on sacrilige but damn, this song is catchy as hell. Guitarists aren't bad either.

 A song that says more about Christmas than anything Cliff Richard ever put out.

Band homepage here.

Is it too late to get "Baby Jesus" to the #1 spot?

Thursday, 18 December 2014

A Fistful Of Comics: December 2014

 A slightly belated look at the comics I picked up last time I was in Southampton.

 We shall start with a title I've never heard of before  - but I just found the cover irresistible.

 Sally Of The Wasteland #4

girl kills mutant
 What it's about:  A motley collection of survivors try to avoid being eaten by mutants in some sort of Post-Apocalypse Louisiana.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Confessions Of A Terrible Modelmaker (pt 3)

 In which I finally get this bloody kit finished

Building the AZ Models F6U Pirate
Clothes pegs are an essential part of my modelling kit.

 Don't ask me why but I really like wingtip tanks on jet fighters. Obviously that only works on straight-winged aircraft. This might explain why fighters after about the mid-50s don't interest me all that much. 
 There's a few exceptions - I have a soft spot for the Hawker Hunter and the English Electric Lightning - but most modern fighters leave me cold. Too mechanical and not enough beauty.

 Isn't that a weird thing to say about a machine designed for killing? Aircraft buffs will get it, I think. 

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Confessions Of A Terrible Modelmaker (pt 2)

 Before you read this post, you might want to read PART ONE

 If you already read it or just can't be bothered, here's a quick recap:
I make model aircraft
I suck at it.
I've just started making this
Making the AZ Models F6U Pirate
AZ Models F6U Pirate (International Version) 
 Now read on...

Does this look like the workspace of a well-organised man? 

Friday, 12 December 2014

Confessions Of A Terrible Modelmaker (pt 1)

 Like a lot of kids I used to make plastic model kits when I was growing up. I even had the classic "Spitfires hanging from a string" display over my bed for many years. They fell down quite a lot.
 But truth be told, I wasn't actually good at making models.  Thanks to a combination of impatience and being epically cack-handed the end result was never going to win any prizes. Gluey-thumbprints, lumpy paintwork, wonky wings, decals slapped onto unpainted plastic - all present and correct.
 Not that this ever stopped me, of course.  I may never have won any "Model of the week" contests but I was having fun and I could pretend that I was Air Marshall of the Royal Dalanian Airforce when nobody was looking.

 After a while I drifted away from Airfix in favour of LPs, comics and alcohol and managed to spend the next thirty years or so without gluing my fingers together even once.

 Then one day I was poking about Matalan and somehow ended up coming home with an Airfix Typhoon kit .
Next thing I knew, the top of my fridge looked like this.
As you may have noticed, I still quite like Spitfires.
I have another 3 or 4 currently sitting on top of my kitchen cabinets while I work out where the hell to put them. 

 Naturally I assumed I'd be a lot better at sticking kits together. I mean, I'm older and wiser...right?


 While I may be a lot more patient and less inclined to rush the job so I can play with the finished product, it hadn't occurred to me that I might still have the dexterity of an 80 year old alcoholic who had his arms amputated then sewn back on upside down.  
 Basically I still have the same cack-handed fingers that I had when I was 12, except now they are twice the size .
 Here's another slight problem. When you are trying to fit one tiny bit into another tiny bit it helps if you aren't simultaneously short-sighted and longsighted. 

 My neighbours think I have Tourettes. Nope, it's just that the bastard radio aerial just pinged off into the gap behind the fridge yet again. 

 But if you think this is going to stop me making kits, you are sadly mistaken.

Here's what I've been building recently.
 I saw it in Waterlooville models and thought it looked really cool, with the little finlets and all.
Plus, it's quite an obscure aircraft in a colour scheme you don't see very often.

 Take a closer look at the cover again. Bottom right hand corner. 
I didn't notice that until I got home.  It turns out that this is a hypothetical version and I can't help feeling that that's cheating. Why not just paint it bright purple and have it belong to the 2nd Fighter Bomber Wing of the Imperial Lemurian Air Korps?
 A bit of research reveals that the F6U Pirate is obscure for a reason. Quite a lot of the early jets were underpowered and tricky to fly but even by 1950s standards the Pirate was an utter turkey. The USN bought a few for trials then quickly got rid of them after they saw what the pilots were putting in their reports. 
 Evidence suggests that if the El Salvador Air Force had bought Pirates, they would all have quickly ended up embedded in one ploughed field after another. 

 In the next post we shall see how I actually got on with building this kit. 

I warn you now, it won't be pretty. 

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

The Metal Project: More Metal From Argentina

  Hi everybody. I'm back with another selection of songs for you to enjoy. 
 Now the last time I featured Argentina's prolific Metal scene was back in 2012, 
so I thought it was about time for a return visit. 
As always, I hope you find something you like. 
Feel free to headbang. In fact, I insist on it. 

Angorya - Sinientos Profetas del Metal (20120

(Crunchy Thrash)
 Honour to: pablo costan

K24! - Como Un Dios Del Metal (2013)

(Slow-riffed and a bit Manowar-ish)

Honour to: Blackie DiegoRock

El Dragon - De Cuero y Metal (2012)

(Fast Heavy/Power Metal. Vocalist has that harsh rasp to him
that so many Spanish-language vocalists seem to have.  It works.)

Honour to: Cheko Cardozo

Mackina - Hordas De Metal (2012)

(Crunchy Trad Metal - I am impressed.)
Honour to: BlackieDiegoRock

What the hell....Let's have some more Mackina.
Only faster. 

Mackina - Jinetes (Del Metal)

Honour to: BlackieDiegoRock

MAD - Nuestra Senora Del Metal (2005?)

(AC/DC-ish stompalong)
 Honour to: BlackieDiegoRock
Clearly the channel  to check out if you're interested in Argentinian Metal.

And finally...

Guerrero Inmortal - Heavy Metal (2003)
(Fast and furious and taking no prisoners- which is always cool.)
Honour to: drs1980

That's all folks.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Women's Wrestling Comics: Grappling Gertie's Schooldays (1992)

Lady wrestling comic
The best women's wrestling comic cover ever? Could be. 

  Back in 2012 I did a post about Gertrude Williams aka Leopard Lily, prim teacher turned lady wrestler and star of the only British comics ever to feature women's wrestling.  (Read it HERE
 I said at the time that there was a later prequel and if I ever got my hands on a copy, I'd post some scans. 

Well, it took a while but I finally have a copy of "Grappling Gertie's Schooldays" - a a tale of plucky schoolgirls, Arab princesses, nefarious villains and large, scary women with alliterative names. 

Monday, 1 December 2014

More Wall Art In Southsea

 If you ever happen to find yourself in Southsea town centre, why not take a look down the little alleyway between Debenhams and  New Look. There you will find that persons unknown have used the walls to create an outlaw art gallery.
  Personally I love the idea of taking a drab piece of brickwork and concrete and turning it into something colourful and a little bizarre. If I had the money I'd quite like to just drop statues into random places, just to make life more interesting.  
 Now I have written about Southsea's wall art before before (HERE) but some of the murals have been replaced recently and it seemed like a good idea to post an update.

 If anybody knows the artists - and they aren't likely to end up in court - I'd love to hear from them.

Robot wall painting
This is the last and largest mural. 
Also the only one you're likely to see unless you're actually in the alley.
It's on the side of a building so visible from Kent Rd, that runs across the top of the pedestrian precinct.
Sci-Fi buff that I am, I do like this a lot. 
I also like the little honeycomb thingies in the background.

mural posh woman
The only mural that was there before but it's now got  speech balloon.
Why "Teatray"?
Only the artist knows for sure.

A couple of access panels get brightened up somewhat.

Another one where you'd have to ask the artist what it means.
It is striking, though.

Tagging with a sense of style. 

man in bunny suit art
A little chap with quite a lot of charm.

I think this was somebody getting rid of some stickers they happened to have in their bag.
I'm not complaining though. This does suit the overall tone of the alley.

skull flowers art
It took me a while to realise what was actually going on here.
I wonder if the artist was trying to be sinister?

The first one you come to as you duck in from the precinct.
Simple but cheerful.

 As I've mentioned already, I like seeing art out on the streets as it were, and it seems to me that there should be some record of the artists' hard work online. I hope nobody minds. 
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