Oh, hi there! Didn’t hear you come in. Or…remember letting you in. Actually, how did you get in here?
Hmmm, well that sounds like a perfectly reasonable answer. I’m immediately convinced! As it happens you’ve come just in time for another edition of Fun-Size Friday, where I talk about pop culture nonsense from the last couple days. Comics, cartoons, movies, and random celebrity tweets are but a few of the subjects we can cover here, the only caveat is that I keep each subject to two hundred words or less.
“Why two hundred words”, you ask? Well, my sketchily dressed friend, not every question has a perfectly reasonable answer. Sometimes in life stuff just happens, like all this broken glass that’s mysteriously appeared all over my floor. So, pull up a chair, put down your conspicuously large burlap sack, and listen as I regale you with short tales of pointless fluff!
Time To Go Back,
Back To The Past,
With Samurai Jack
Some good news if you’re a person reading this in early 2020 and you’re stuck indoors for stupid/awful COVID-19 related reasons — Adult Swim has temporarily unlocked every episode of the hit Cartoon Network series Samurai Jack to stream on their website for free! If you’re not familiar with the show’s premise, I’ll let the show’s introduction get you up to speed:
Created by writer/director Genndy Tartakovsky (Dexter’s Laboratory, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Hotel Transylvania), Samurai Jack enjoyed a short but sweet four-season run from 2001 to 2004. Despite it’s brevity, the show has captivated audiences with it’s incredible animation, bizarre characters, carefully paced storytelling, and it’s ability to jump effortlessly across multiple genres — from comedy to mystery to horror and everything in between, mixed with a ton of demon-slaying, robot-slicing action. Even before it’s final “revival” season in 2017 brought the story of Jack and Aku to a close, it was already widely recognized by critics as one of the greatest animated series of all time. Suffice to say that if you’re one of the lucky ones who hasn’t yet watched Samurai Jack, there’s no time like the present.
♫Gotta Catch ‘Em All,
Since we received official confirmation that the 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo will be postponed until next year — information that won’t come as much of a shock to anyone at this point — I’ve been doing a bit of research on the history of the Olympic games. Well, I say “research”; it was mostly a lot of breezing through random Wikipedia pages, but the intent was definitely there!
Anyway, during my Olympic Wiki-Binge, I came across something I hadn’t really noticed before: apparently every iteration of the Olympic games have their own individual mascots. Knowing that, I just had to see what Tokyo cooked up for us this go-around, and let me tell you they did not disappoint.
Enter Miraitowa & Someity: official mascots of the 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games, respectively. I really hope you can see these guys because, oh my gosh, they are a delight. If you told me these things were the starters for the next generation of Pokémon games I wouldn’t be surprised. I mean, I would say they seem more like Digimon than Pokémon, but that’s just me splitting hairs. Look, I’m a mark for cute designs, just let me have this.
The Question Isn’t “Why Hellions“?
The Real Question Is “Why Not Hellions?”
While I remain…intrigued by Jonathan Hickman‘s attempt to revitalize the X-Men comic book line — intrigued enough to write about it for twelve weeks straight last year — I simply don’t have the time or the budget to keep covering the dozen or so X-Men books coming out every month. Still, I try to follow one or two books at a time and occasionally try something that really piques my interest. This week it was Hellions #1, written by Zeb Wells with art by Stephen Segovia.
To provide some general context, the driving plotline of the current X-Men comics is the establishment of a sovereign nation where all mutants are welcome, no matter their past or previous affiliations. As you can imagine that open invitation includes several extremely problematic mutants — a melting pot of former villains and heroes alike — and the characters featured in Hellions are perhaps the most damaged of the lot. Frankly, none of them should be allowed around other people, much less each other, so naturally they’re all forced onto a team led by a guy named Mister Sinister. Hilarity (predictably) ensues.
This is a spectacularly bad idea. I cannot wait for the next issue.
Fun-Size Comic Book Panel Of The Week
In Short, Let’s Keep Doing Our Part
Well gang, another Fun-Size Friday, another week of quarantine. In the face of something this massive, what’s a person like me supposed to do?
Obviously the best thing we can do — especially those of us who are living in “red zone” areas like Italy, Spain, China, & the United States — is stay at home and try to stymie the spread of this pandemic. Still, if you want to go a step further there are plenty of other ways you can help: donating money, toys, blood, or just a few hours of your time around your local community. It’s really not that hard to find opportunities around you; a quick Google search should help you get started if you’re interested.
Again, the best thing you can do is stay home and help “flatten the curve”; don’t feel obligated to give anymore than you can afford to. If you want something to do that’s simple and effective, something as simple as a phone call to friends and family can be a huge gift — for them and for you. As always: stay safe, stay informed, and stay awesome.