Thursday, 30 April 2015

Sherlocked Con Recap, 26/04/15

Kayleigh
On the 26th April 2015, Geek Mash writers Kayleigh, Neil, Matt and Ross took a trip to London's Excel Centre to check out Showmasters' Sherlocked event. 

The first official convention for BBC, Stephen Moffat and Mark Gatiss' reimagining of Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes book series, the show promised an (almost) all-star cast, with plenty of things to see and do.

All of us being Sherlock fans, we were excited to see what the laid in store for us at the Excel. We were used to visiting the Excel many times before for the London MCM Comic Con, so expected the hall used to be packed. Unfortunately, this was not to be the case...

Join myself, Matt, Neil and Ross as we collaboratively discuss our views of the convention, as well as enthuising about the show itself, and our further London adventures on the day shortly after the we exited the con! 


Saturday, 25 April 2015

Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses' Concert, 17.04.15


Kayleigh

On the 17th April 2015, I attended The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddess' concert with some friends (one of them being Geek Mash's very own Brad), and my boyfriend. 

I had previously attended the 25th Anniversary Zelda concert five years ago, and knew I had to go again. Music has always been an important part of the Zelda series. It creates mood, introduces and re-introduces you to new and familiar characters (each main character has their own theme), and really works with the story and gameplay. 

Join me and Brad as we answer a few questions about the concert, get nostalgic over the Zelda series and share our favourite songs, memories and more!



Thursday, 23 April 2015

10 Characters the Marvel Cinematic Universe should use in the future

Jason


With the Marvel Cinematic Universe nearing the end of phase 2 with the upcoming release of Avengers age of Ultron, and having already announced every movie in Phase 3 (and a little beyond that with the Inhumans). I’ve decided to take a peek at which comic book characters they could still use. These characters could either have their own films, TV series or play a major role in other characters films or TV shows. 

There are a few rules. 

The first is that it can only be characters marvel is allowed to use. So the X-men and Fantastic four universes are off limit (although Spiderman isn’t thanks to the recent deal with Sony). 

The second is that no villains will be in this list (well….sort of…..you’ll see). 

The final rule is that they can’t be part of a pre-existing franchise…so no stand-alone Pepper Potts film. With these rules Established let’s get on with the show.

1. The first member of this list is nice and patriotic….Captain Britain.

There are two versions of Captain Britain’s abilities that could be used in the Marvel cinematic universe. One that revolves around the mystical artefact the amulet of might and later on various other artefacts. The second is the ultimate universe version of Cap Brit’s (as his friends call him) powers which simply involve a powered suit. This version is part of a whole EU’s worth of powered suit heroes. Which would annoy Nigel Farage.
Having both a mystic and technological based explanation to his powers means that Cap Brit’s abilities could be tied to either Thor’s side of things or Ironman’s. Heck he could even be used as a replacement for Cap America if Chris Evan’s wants to move on. Plus the Marvel cinematic universe could do with a more international taste.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Brads Dream Teams - The Avengers






So Avengers Age of Ultron is out soon (Yay \o/) so I thought I would put on my Comic geek hat and put together a dream team of who I would pick

Rules



  • 616 Main Universe only (I'm gonna do another one for AlternAvengers)
  • They had to have been an Avenger or in one of the Avengers spin off Teams (West Coast, Great Lake, YoungSecret (Shhh!)AcademyMightyA.I.Astonishing and Uncanny)
  • Can be alive or dead
  • Any version from over the years. Characters change name and costume so I'll use the version I want to see


Got all that? 


Now on with the list!







Brawlers
The Hulk




AKA -  

  • Robert Bruce Banner
  • Doc Green
  • Joe Fixit
  • World Breaker
Powers - 
  • Physical Transformation
  • Unlimited Strength
  • Vast Invulnerability
  • Superhuman - Leaping, Lung Capacity, Speed
  • Regenerative Healing Factor
  • Immunity to Diseases 
  • Decelerated Aging
  • Increased Psionic Resistance
Version - 
  • Professor Hulk


Origin and Why him?

Well everyone knows The Hulks origin


Doctor Banner

Soaked in Gamma Rays
Turns into The Hulk
Ain't He unglamourous

But over the years Banner has tried time and time again to remove his alter persona with varying levels of failure


On one particular occasion he decides to concoct a potion of chemicals in a bath, yes you read that right, Doctor Banner makes his own chemical bath.....

*Sighs*


So anyway he wants to see if it will remove the Hulk but instead it causes Banners mind to be in the Hulks body

A monster of a guy with a scientist mind?
Who wouldn't want HIM on their team?


Just don't make him Angry, you won't like him when he's angry as he turns into the body of Banner with the mind of the Hulk. That raging level of Anger inside the body of a puny human!


Monday, 20 April 2015

My First Con Part 5




Day 5.

THE FINAL DAY (insert dramatic Michael Bay horn).


Yes ladies and Gents, Boys and Girls, Cats and Dogs, Elcor and Astari etc. etc. etc. We have reached the last day of the con, now on this day we actually did not got to any panels at all, don’t get me wrong they were certainly available, what DragonCon is famous for is repeating large and popular panels, thus allowing all the people who may have not been lucky enough to get in the first time, a second bite at the proverbial Geek Apple apple.


However we did not go for the second bite as we were well sated from the full meal which was DragonCon. Rather than regale you with the usual fair that happens when you leave an event, you know the packing, the cleaning of the room of junk food wrappers, booze bottles, fake wigs, make up packs etc.
Let me give you my opinion of my first convention.





First of all the pros:
  • An amazing atmosphere! So many people with different fandoms all congregated in one area for one goal. To have fun. It is amazing and I can see why they are addictive and liberating in equal measure. Though I can see how they can be utterly terrifying for the introverted geek. The only thing I can equate it to would be a concert. Cons have that same electricity in the air, that same excitement, that same soul, that same je nais se quoi.
  • An amazing opportunity to have a look at various artists, be that painters, artificers or cosplayers. If you want to look at something new and interesting then Con is always a good place to start. I saw costumes from all different fandoms; comics, games, shows, joke costumes, political costumes. You name it, Con will have it. I attended a concert, and there were at least three others that were there. I saw panels on everything from String Theory and Virology to Geek Science and Full Steel Combat.
  • Allows non-creatives (such as myself) to be a tad creative with cosplaying. Everyone is really respectful and encouraging of people’s attempts. I am the evidence of this as DragonCon was my first attempt at cosplaying.
  • Insights into fandoms, now I am pretty geeky, I have friends who are geekier in other aspects but with so much going on you will always learn something about your respective interests. This is grand for creating conversations with other people and it’s good to have those memories.
  • Amazing opportunity just to meet people, I recall chatting to one guy for an hour about his art, his dreams, and giving him a pep talk too as he felt he wasn’t good enough to be at DragonCon!

Now the cons (is that a pun?)



  • Crowds, I know it sounds a bit stupid. You expect big crowds at events, however you normally can escape for a few minutes, at cons however there are people everywhere. Literally everywhere, but like I said when you have 50,000 people in close proximity it can get a bit close. This is extremely noticeable when using lifts, escalators, small corridors. You get the idea.
  • Along with crowds are queues. Queues for panels, for merchandise, for lifts, for food, for the toilet (I am not joking). I’m British, and thus queues are part of my blood, my birth right and really part of my DNA; but my word Con’s put it into a new perspective, when you have a panel to go too and you know you are going to be queuing for two hours to get in kind of gets old pretty quickly.
  • Cost; now this isn’t the cost of the badge, or the hotel room, but the cost of everything else, the food, the merchandise, the tips. If I recall correctly, the cost of the Badge and the Hotel Room together cost about £200 in total. Now including meals for the 5 days, I would tack another good £100 onto that and if I bought an official shirt, that’s another £20. That really just includes the official merchandise, when you have all the smaller shops and independent dealers around it is easy to commit financial suicide in there. I think the only thing on earth which can drain a wallet faster is a Steam sale.
Well, I believe that sums it up for now. My first con……was epic, something which I will definitely do again!

If you are coming to this party a little late the previous posts are here:

Day 4
Day 3
Day 2
Day 1

Shop Review: Anorel Arts




Quiet down everyone. Its review time.

Today we look at the online store Anorel Arts.


Anorel Arts specialises in the sale of bespoke art pieces, portraits, herbal soaps, jewellery and other associated products.


These products take on a geek tinge, however I feel you knew that otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this.


Let’s take a look at the owner of this fine establishment.


The owner of Anorel Arts, is one Kaitlin Brown, holder of a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts and an Associate’s Degree in Art. Kaitlin has been running the business for five years. Kaitlin is based in Rural Georgia and thus most of her sales are conducted either online or through the Convention circuit, where she is a familiar face.

Anorel Arts is based primarily as an Etsy Store, however as you are reading this, she is currently transferring her items to a registered domain, the link is located at the start of this page. As well as an Etsy store, Anorel Arts has a Facebook page which also hosts most of her current wares.





Saturday, 18 April 2015

Record Store Day: Our Favourite Bands




Record Store Day came into being in 2007 when over 700 independent stores in the USA came together to celebrate their unique culture. The UK followed suit and 2015 will see the eighth celebration of the UK's unique independent sector. 

This is the one day that all of the independently owned record stores come together with artists to celebrate the art of music. Special vinyl and CD releases and various promotional products are made exclusively for the day and hundreds of artists across the globe make special appearances and performances. 

Festivities include performances, meet & greets with artists, DJ's, in store quizzes and many other events. Check out the website HERE for more info

I miss the old Record Store days, the days before instant downloads and digital copies of albums

Those mondays where you would go into a record shop to peruse the new releases, and the joy you would get when you found the latest single from your favourite band had been released, with some awesome B-Sides that were only released on the single, or in some cases across several versions of the same single


Flicking through albums in the stacks to make sure you had them all in your collection, the joy of discovering a new album either through your friends or the stores recommendations, even just buying the album because you dug the cover


So in the spirit of the occasion we got our collective hats on and thought we'd post about our favourite bands


Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Big Punch Comics - An Interview With Jon Lock


Big Punch Magazine, or BPM, is Big Punch Studio's flagship product. Big Punch Studios stands for engaging, dynamic and colourful storytelling for all ages, specialising in the stories they love to read. 

With two of the Big Punch Team already being seasoned comic book creators, BPM was conceived as a way for them to tell the stories they had waiting in the wings in a quarterly, episodic fashion.

Afterlife Inc. and 7STRING were just the beginning. Welcome to the Big Punch Multiverse...

I really dug this first issue of Big Punch Magazine, as anyone knows me will tell you I'm a massive fan of parallel worlds and multiverses which is what this comic is all about!

Like the 2000AD comics, each issue has several different stories, featuring different art styles and these are all beautiful in their own way, from the epic Star Wars/Guardians of the Galaxy style battles in the first part of Cuckoos, the post apocalyptic stylings of Orb or the fantastic cartoony stylings in the artwork for 99 Swords, this comic had me hooked from the get go! 

I see some great potential from these guys and I think the comic and Universe they are creating here will just go from strength to strength, you should definitely check it out so you can say you were there, Man!


So me and Jon had a little Q&A about the comic, how this collaboration came together and what his favourite sword is...


Monday, 13 April 2015

My First Con: Part 4



Hello my lovelies, once more we continue with my journey into fandom, cons and cosplay.
 

So at DragonCon I have cosplayed as Squall, seen Mass Effect Voice Actors, Jayne Hats, been to a quiz show and been to a Gig.

It is now Sunday, the penultimate day of Con. From my observations, you find to types of Con goers; the first are those who go every panel that they can squeeze in, with this people I think its not so much they prefer a specific fandom or show, they just relish in the experience of the con, with all it’s colours, sights and sounds. Then there are the con goers which prefer to see the panels they think will entertain them the most and thus they do not get to see every panel that’s going.


I fit into that second category. So again after a long late but fun Saturday night Kaitlin and I had a small lie in on that gorgeous Sunday morning, had breakfast in the room and got ready in the usual fashion. This time it was time for Gambit and Domino to hit the Atlanta streets. Yes. Gambit, long trenchcoat, shirt, black jeans, wig in Atlanta heat in August……it is official, I am a Masochist.
Moving swiftly on from that lovely image we headed out to one of the largest panels going. The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. So we left with ample time to beat the huge queue, (or so we thought) we made sure we arrived at the hotel a whole hour before the panel was due to start, we found where the panel was being held and we followed the queue.


We followed the queue out of the Marriott, around the corner and down the street we hung a right around the back of the Marriott and past that too. The most depressing thing about
the whole experience was that at intervals there would be signs indicating that we were in fact following the right queue (that’s good), but also gave estimated wait times (that’s bad). By the time we had got to the end of the queue, the estimated wait time was two and a half hours….

The panel started in an hour. Our roommates had left about 3 hours previous to us and were still about 100 people back in the queue. At this point we were debating scrapping the panel and doing something else, but we thought ‘Goddamnit this is Middle Earth we are talking about! We need to see this’ so we pulled up our respective pants and got ready to Queue, I felt ready, the Britishness in me keeping me strong, I was worried about Kaitlin however.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Review A Great Game Day - Jet Set Radio

Review A Great Game Day is an event where many bloggers celebrate their gaming passions by reviewing a great game.
As this is my first year participating in the event I’m going to be reviewing an old favourite: Jet Set Radio on the Dreamcast. For the purposes of this review I replayed the game using the recent HD re-release on PC.
You can check out the event as well as other reviews at http://reviewagreatgameday.com/

Jet Set Radio is a 1st party Sega game in a time where the company was being creative and making a lot of new and original games. The visuals are stunning, the gameplay is addictive and the music is insanely superb.

Set in the mythical city of Tokyoto, you play as a skater gang known as the GGs.
It’s your mission to defend your Shibuya-Cho home turf, as well as conquering new turf from rival gangs and the police.

Friday, 3 April 2015

10 Spontaneous Dance Scenes in Non-Dance Movies

Kayleigh
I love dancing, and so I appreciate a good dance film. Dirty Dancing and Singin' In The Rain are among my favourite dance and musical movies.

However, I also enjoy a spontaneous dance scene in non-dance movies. Those moments where the mood suddenly changes, making you smile, adding a touch of fun and combining a memorable boogie with a catchy tune.

Join me as I count down ten of my favourite spontaneous dances in non-dance movies. Many of these you may be familiar with, such as the few classic 80's films, chick flicks, cult classics and comedies.












10. Napoleon Dynamite: Jamiroquai - Canned Heat

Napoleon's dance scene as part of the "Vote For Pedro" campaign, nails the main characters awkwardness perfectly. Napoleon nervously steps out onto the stage in front of a hall of high school students, before launching into a full-blown dance routine to Jamiroquai's "Canned Heat." 

For me, I always associate this Jamiroquai tune with Napoleon Dynamite since I first saw it upon its release in 2004. 



Thursday, 2 April 2015

Children's Book Day: Our Favourite Books

Kayleigh

It's International Children's Book Day, an event that takes place on or around renowned author Hans Christian Andersen's birthday since 1967. 

Celebrated to inspire a love of reading and to call attention to children's books, its the perfect time for us adults to look fondly back at those books we remember reading, re-reading and becoming perhaps a little obsessed with as a child.

Perhaps you're a parent, aunt or uncle, grandparent, cousin or godparent who is keen to introduce some of your favourite children's books to a younger family member. In the age where games consoles, TVs and smartphones take priority, International Children's Book Day reminds us of the childhood wonder, excitement and fascination derived from a book. 

It encourages creativity, forges fond memories, gives a child strong role model characters to look up to, as well as enjoyment. 

The Geek Mash team have shared their favourite children's books. How many of these do you remember?


Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Jupiter - An Interview with Drew Sumner


Jupiter is a man with a past, a really cool, movie star, pro wrestling past. That's all behind him now though and what's ahead has pointy teeth and has kidnapped a whole bunch of scientists. It's going to take more than elbow drops and high flying footwork to solve this case!

Presented in black and white (like a proper noir) Jupiter is the first chapter in a Ghostbusters meets Raymond Chandler world full of Femme Fatales, ghosts, dropkicks and tommy guns. 

The flashbacks to Jupiter's past wrestling career gives a weight to the character and works well with the Mike Mignola style inking.

The whole concept of the comic is great, the image of a luchadore in a detective outfit walking through the grim dark streets is not something that will leave my mind and just fills me with thoughts of the possibilities of what we see next, and I WANT to see what happens next, this comic has me wanting more!



So me and Drew had a little Q&A about the comic, some coming development for Jupiter and which dip is best for a Churro...


A Life of Danger and Film: An interview With Chris Cordell

  

Imagine this, you are the hero or heroine running across the roof tops chasing an assailant, or maybe you are the assailant. The mercury is falling, the sky is dark and your rooftop journey comes to an end where the next building is just a little to far to reach, but luckily you spot a balcony you can reach. You breathe in take two steps back, say a little prayer then make your leap into the next chapter of the chase or the afterlife! We have seen this scene multiple times in films, we've day dreamed it, but do we really know about the brave people who bring this death defying acts to the screen?

Well today I want to introduce you to Chris Cordell, a Stunt Performer I was lucky enough to interview, in fact instead of me introducing him, I'll let him do it for you.
 
My names Christoph (Chris) Cordell I am 30 years old. I was born in Harlow and grew up and attended Passmores comprehensive before attending Harlow College where I studied Performing Arts and Dance. I left Harlow when I went to university after which I travelled the world. Moved to China, moved to Wales and somehow ended back in Essex.  I've been a fully qualified stunt performer for a year before that I was training and performing small stunt roles, whilst working at the Harlow Outdoor Pursuits Centre where I taught Rock climbing Kayaking and Archery.
I'm quite a competitive person and have competed in numerous activities including; Rugby, Gymnastics (men's artistic), Martial Arts (Wing Chun, Ninjutsu, and most recently Jiu Jitsu) and archery (110m compound) 
I met my fiancé Natasha 6 years ago and we're getting married next year in Vegas.

So without further ado, lets get to the questions.


1. Hello Chris, I apologise but I am going to ask you a very clichĂ©d question first of all; why did you become a stuntman? Was there a certain moment in your life or did you kind of fall into the job (excuse the pun)? 

Actually a funny story. When I was 5 I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. The Doctors told my parents that in order to help control my blood sugar levels, I should start some kind of sport. My brother was a very keen footballer, so that wasn't an option. My dad asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. My answer was of course what every 5 year old wants. To become a power ranger. Seeing the opportunity in this my dad said "Well we better get you started with gymnastics and martial arts. So it began. I think it was a few years later I was about 10 when he asked me the same question. Still a keen martial artist and gymnast my reply was the same. He laughed and said "you do realise the power rangers aren't real they're just stuntmen!" So I replied "ok then I'll be one of them."  As I grew up on the gymnastics scene I met many other people either training or already working as stunt performers.

2. So Chris, I have done a little research and I have noticed that some people within your profession use the term Stuntman, and others Stunt Performer. Is there a reason for that? 


There is 2 main reasons for this. The first being that not all stuntmen are men. And secondly as things have grown in the stunt world we like to think of ourselves as performers and not just dummies for a beating or to use a stunt term "dope on a rope"

3. So how does one become a stuntman, is there a national governing body or association that keeps records or all the active stunt performer in the UK or is there a training school/s?  


Becoming a stunt performer does involve a lot of national governing bodies. The current requirements to join the British stunt register, is that you have a high level in at least 6 disciplines across a wide range of varieties including, agility, fighting, falling, driving, swimming, or if you hold a national title in any other discipline i.e. Olympic or Common wealth medal.

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