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Now in our tenth calendar year!
PCR #481 (Vol. 10, No. 24). This edition is for the week of June 8--14, 2009.

"The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3"  by Mike Smith
Forgotten Horrors: The Deadly Spawn  by ED Tucker
Summer Memories: Enchanted Forest  by Chris Woods
The Return...bully Pulpit? .... Fangoria Turns 30! .... Spider-man 4 .... Sporcle Addiction .... .... .... .... Quote  by Brandon Jones
Back To Some Basics .... Collapse? .... Indiana Pension Lawsuit...laughing At Geithner .... Deese The Savior .... Nader Resurfaces .... The Rev Returns .... Sea Kittens ....  by Brandon Jones
$22.5 Million Couch Potato .... Down But Not Out .... Buccaneers Want Your Money! .... Ed Werder Is An Idiot .... Al Bundy Was A Bear! .... Magic Finally Steal One .... Iwfl ....  by Chris Munger
Happy Birthday .... Zac Efron For Spidey? .... Kid Friendly? .... Bond 23 .... .... .... .... .... My Favorite Films, Part 2...  by Mike Smith
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Splash Page by Brandon Jones

The Return...Bully Pulpit?

I toiled long and hard over handling the return of "Splash Page", even debating changing the title entirely. While the Pop Culture landscape is sparse with little to brag about, let alone recommend, I still there's some things to bring to the table.

A close friend of mine turned me onto a graphic novel from 2004 that I hadn't even heard of: "Tales From the Bully Pulpit."

The story follows Teddy Roosevelt, the ghost of Thomas Edison in a stolen H.G. Wells time machine through time to battle Nazis and Martians. Full of "Bill and Ted", "Back to the Future" moments, the pinnacle for me was Teddy "getting help" as he retrieves historic figures to assist the battle. In particular is Abraham Lincoln, rolling up his sleeves for a throw down, proclaiming: "The jig is up, you coconut fascists."

The "Bully Pulpit" becomes the name of the time machine based on Roosevelt's coined term from "bully" meaning "wonderful" (not a school yard harasser) and "pulpit" (or platform) which is a term associated not with religion and lecturing.

The idea of a wonderful or grand platform -- the bully pulpit, is a great way to drive the highways of pop culture: past, present and beyond.

There are good comics out there, not a lot of great ones, but there's a real shortage on FUN comics and "Tales From the Bully Pulpit" was just that -- FUN!

So in the end, I thought about changing the name to "The Bully Pulpit", but there's something special about the old "Splash Page" and I hope you'll enjoy.

Fangoria turns 30!
It all started with a Godzilla cover, a "Dawn of the Dead" piece and a photo preview of "Alien". Thirty years later, the issue plods along through a comprehensive "Hall of Fame" which reaches Argento to Zombie and all in between. I'd have to question some pretty soft selections like Bill Paxton or Kevin Williamson.

I remember convincing my grandmother to buy me my first Fanfo because C-3PO and R2-D2 was on the cover. Another way "Star Wars" was shaping our lives. I became a bigger fan and follower of the mag years later.

A lot has changed since then, especially the $8.99 price tag for a magazine that is mostly ads and press material.

Spider-Man 4
Sam Raimi's new film, "Drag me to Hell", has brought forward the questions and debate surrounding "Spider-Man 4". With Tobey Maguire aboard and Kirsten Dunst just confirmed1, all questions to Raimi shift to the villain.

Sony has confirmed efforts to bring a "Venom" back to the big screen in his own feature, Raimi has yet to divulged Spidey's next foe. Most speculate that Dylan Baker's Dr. Connor will finally transform to the Lizard, but a second villain could be any one's guess.

1. http://www.screenindia.com/news/kirsten-dunst-signs-spiderman4/474138/

Sporcle addiction

Promoting themselves at "Mentally Stimulating Distractions", this website lets you play various timed games. Test your skills at naming all of the U.S. Presidents, Name all of Steven Speilberg's films, Asia's Most Populated Cities, or even the Castlevania Games.

They add 2-4 new games everyday, so it never gets old. No matter what your taste, Sporcle tests your knowledge.

Be warned: once you get started, it's hard to stop and minutes become hours and you are truly addicted.

To Sam Raimi: Spider-Man 3 took a lot of criticism even though it was successful. Do you take that into consideration when you're developing 4?

SR: Do I take the criticism into consideration? Yeah, absolutely. All filmmakers want their films to be liked. I shouldn't say that but I definitely want my films to be liked by the audience. I don't make an artistic type of picture that I can say to myself, "Even if this crowd doesn't like it, it stands as a work of art and will be appreciated years later or has meaning without the audience." I simply am an entertainer and I make films for audience appreciation. When they don't like it, I don't have a leg to stand on. If a critic doesn't like it, it's like oh, he hates me or it's bad, they don't like it. Every time I get a bad criticism, I just try not to dwell on it but it's very upsetting. You really want to please people.

"Splash Page" is ©2009 by Brandon Jones.   Webpage design and all graphics herein (except where otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2009 by Nolan B. Canova.