Episode 34: Dia De Los Pew Pews

SHOW NOTES

NEWS

  • Apple announces a ton of stuff at their iPad Event last Thursday (10/16/14). Here's a recap:
    • Apple Pay now available as part of the iOS 8.1 update, out now
    • WatchKit API will be available to devs in November
    • OS X Yosemite now available. Handoff and SMS from iMessage is sick
    • 5k Retina Display iMacs announced
    • iPad Air 2 announced
  • Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Vol 1 to be released on limited edition cassette. Out November 17th via Marvel Music and Hollywood Records, the release will be exclusive to independent music stores that participate in Record Store Day
  • Ziba's "Signet": A bold vision for the future of the postage stamp:

THE STACK

Edge of Spider-Verse #5, Marvel Comics

In a futurist city fairly different from the New York we are familiar with, our version of Spider-Man takes the shape of a government  project: SP//dr. SP//dr is comprised of three vital components: a pilot, a machine, and a radioactive sentient spider acting as one half of the brain that makes it all work. Peni Parker is a young girl, who, left parentless, is adopted by her Aunt May and Uncle Ben, the two heads of the SP//dr project. When they realize Peni is the only one who can successfully pair with SP//dr, they make the unorthodox decision to train her as SP//dr's newest pilot. - Gerard Way

THE GOOD: Artist Jake Wyatt does a solid job giving this issue a sort of manga feel, given the story's setting. Gerard Way seems to be very comfortable writing for such a prestigious series, and it's very apparent he had a blast doing so. Also, regardless of the fact this is issue 5, the story does a good job standing on its own, as we came into the series without reading any of the previous issues and still enjoyed it.

THE BAD: There is still cannon that needs to be known, and for new readers like us, we don't get to fully enjoy what happens in the story. If anything, it's kinda confusing. Case in point when two new Spider-Dudes come in, we had no idea who they were. Some research brings us to Peter Parker of Earth-312500 (Coated Spider-Man) and Spider-Ham.

FINAL RATING: 4/5 PEWS

WARP ZONE

The Silent Age: Episode Two, House on Fire

Special thanks to House on Fire for the review copy!

The Silent Age takes you on an adventurous journey into a dystopian future where mankind has gone extinct! Travel through time between the iconic 70's and a desolate present day haunted by silence. The Silent Age is an atmospheric point-and-click adventure game with stylized visuals and an eerie soundtrack that will keep you in suspense as you solve mind-bending puzzles. With an interface specifically designed for touch devices, you'll flow through the story without hiccups and frustrations. Sit back, plug in your headphones, and enjoy the adventure.

THE GOOD: The game leads you through a great time travel story that keeps you shrouded in mystery up through the very end. The somewhat minimalist art style is great. Gameplay is engaging, if simple.

THE BAD: The puzzles themselves offer little challenge, with only few moments throughout the game proving to be real head-scratchers. The game does not hold your hand, per se, but it leaves no room for mistakes, letting you basically try everything until you get it right. There are no consequences. It’s more like playing through in interactive story.

FINAL RATING: 4/5 PEWS

KEEPIN IT REEL: DOUBLE HEADER

The Book of Life, Reel Effects and 20th Century Fox

Manolo, a young man who is torn between fulfilling the expectations of his family and following his heart, embarks on an adventure that spans three fantastic worlds where he must face his greatest fears.

THE GOOD: Visually, the movie is jaw-dropping. You'd be hard pressed to find another piece of eye-candy like this. Vivid colors that seemingly make the characters pop out of the screen, regardless if you purchased a 3D ticket or not. It's also does a very good job of educating about what Dia De Los Muertos or Day of the Dead truly represents, and maybe just does an overall great job at representing Hispanic culture as a whole.

THE BAD: The score is horrendous in our opinion. Many songs like Radiohead's "Creep," Biz Markie's "Just a Friend", and Mumford & Sons' "I Will Wait", just to name a few, are given the mariachi treatment. It was kinda cool at first, but the farther we got along, the more the idiot chills kept creepin' up. The argument for it by Jorge Gutierrez is:

“When you go serenade someone in Mexico, it’s not like you write a song for them. You use an existing song. I wanted our characters to be able to grab songs from all over the world. The Elvis song, my grandparents loved. The Rod Stewart song, my dad loved. These are all songs that are important to me because they’re important to my family.”

We're not too sure. We would've been happy with some home-cleaning Mexican jams our moms used to play. But hey, we're reviewers, not score composers.

FINAL RATING 4/5 PEWS

Fury, QED International

April, 1945. As the Allies make their final push in the European Theatre, a battle-hardened army sergeant named Wardaddy commands a Sherman tank and her five-man crew on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. Out-numbered, out-gunned, and with a rookie soldier thrust into their platoon, Wardaddy and his men face overwhelming odds in their heroic attempts to strike at the heart of Nazi Germany.

THE GOOD: We came out of this pretty blown away. There's this authenticity to the movie, regardless of the fact that it wasn't actually based on one real event, as most war movies are ought to do. The brotherhood between the 5-man platoon is palpable. There's also some really moving scenes that have you talking way after leaving the theater. Incredible ending as well. Half the time when we think we have a 5-pewer on our hands, they unravel at the end. Pacing, acting, storyline: top notch.

THE BAD: We weren't on-board with Logan Lerman's acting as "Norman". He just didn't convey the insane, raw emotions his co-workers did. Still, even that small hiccup was not enough to ruin the movie... and hey, Lerman makes up for it with his acting in his relationship scene (or ending of it).

FINAL RATING 5/5 PEWS