Pop Artifact! Aurora "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" submarine model

"Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" on DVD.

Vintage DC Comics House Ad

See the Best DC Comics Sites on the Web.

Review roundup: "X-Men: The Last Stand"

Here's what folks are saying:

Christian Science Monitor: ...I think one reason the film series, as well as the "X-Men" Marvel Comics, are so popular with young people is because of its central metaphor. From Superman and Batman on down, quite a few superhero or antihero comic figures have led double lives, and this split appeals particularly to teenagers still experimenting with who they are. The mutants in "X-Men" are an exaggerated version of this split: Not only do they have superhuman powers, but they are vilified by humans for having them.

... suppose it's asking too much of Ratner to impart some kind of visionary flourish to the proceedings. But without it, these comic-book movies all tend to look the same. The "heart" of the story - the choice these mutants must make about their mutancy - rarely comes into play.

Miami Herald: The Last Stand doesn't play out as a grand final adventure (although, much like a Rolling Stones farewell tour, there's some doubt as to whether this really is the end). Instead, it's a disappointing chapter in what until now has been a highly entertaining, even thought-provoking series.

...Ratner seems incapable of infusing his overly busy story with nuance, depth or the wonderful wry humor that connected us so thoroughly to these characters in the first place, and so their sacrifices never register. Singer's films were peppered with small moments that felt epic. Ratner's film just feels awfully small.

Detroit Free Press: ...the rich theme gets lost in a mass of new characters and director Brett Ratner's preference for the visceral over the emotional.

Belfast Telegraph: X marks the spot... where director Brett Ratner (Rush Hour) reduces the X-Men to a soulless, brainless clatter.

The third and final film in the series reduces the epic battle between good and evil to a barrage of computer-generated special effects and slow-motion trickery.

Washinton Post: Displaying none of Singer's finesse or judgment, the new director, Brett, aka "Ratner," makes a hash of the story and characters his predecessor brought to such complex, sympathetic life, delivering a pumped-up exercise in mayhem, carnage and blunt-force trauma.

The Guardian: Against the odds, this third X-Men movie (inevitably referred to as the last in the "trilogy", to torture completist-geeks into buying the DVD) turns out to be a lively and likeable picture - a fun summer blockbuster, which is capable of being scary and even rather affecting.

Knight Ridder: ...die-hard fans of the popular series...can forget the chat-room anxiety generated when their hero, Bryan Singer, director of the two previous ``X-Men'' movies, handed over the reins of the popular franchise to the more paint-by-numbers Brett Ratner (``Rush Hour''). (Singer moved on to just one lone guy in tights, directing ``Superman Returns.'')

True, Ratner is no Singer, but in ``The Last Stand'' he delivers the goods with gusto.

See the Best X-Men Sites on the Web.

Lost: Is this Jack?

Making a big hubbub on the "Lost" message board over the past 24 hours: Is this guy--one of the two Portuguese-speaking guys in a snowbound electromagnetic anomaly monitoring station depicted at the end of the season finale--Matthew Fox, the same actor who plays series regular Jack?

Looks a lot like him, but the part is credited to an actor named Len Cordova.

There's a nice comparison/contrast post here.

See the Best Lost Sites on the Web.

Pop Culture Roundup May 26, 2006

Deal alert: Amazon has 42 percent off sale on "Futurama" and "Simpsons" DVD box sets.


Reggae/ska pioneer Desmond Dekker has passed away.


Papercutz "Nancy Drew" graphic novels are selling like hot cakes in book stores and are set to become even more widely available soon.


A 17-cut CD of songs inspired by the works of writer Neil Gaimin is set for release soon. It includes tunes by Tori Amos, Thea Gilmore and others.


Sci.com teases the next season of "Lost."


DVD: Perry Mason Season 1, Vol. 1 due July 11

This set features the first 19 episodes from season 1 (1957-58) on five discs. No word on extras.

It's available pre-order from Amazon now.

DVD: Amazing Stories: Complete First Season due July 18

This set will include all 24 episodes of the Steven Spielberg produced-anthology show,which aired from 1985-87. No details, yet, on extras.

It's available for pre-order from Amazon now.

Top 10 comics, DVDs, CDs, action figure May 26, 2006

Via Amazon:

Comics - Graphic Novels:

1. V for Vendetta
2. Y: The Last Man Vol. 7: Paper Dolls
3. The Complete Calvin and Hobbes
4. The Complete Peanuts 1959-1960
5. Watchmen
6. Serenity: Those Left Behind (Serenity)
7. Hell in a Handbasket
8. Superman Returns
9. X-Men: The Complete Age of Apocalypse Epic, Book 2
10. X-Men: The Complete Age of Apocalypse Epic, Book 3


1. High School Musical
2. Deadwood - The Complete Second Season
3. Kingdom of Heaven (4-Disc Director's Cut)
4. Boston Legal - Season 1
5. Underworld - Evolution (Widescreen Special Edition)
6. The 4400 - The Complete Second Season
7. M*A*S*H - Season Ten (Collector's Edition)
8. Final Fantasy VII - Advent Children (2-Disc Special Edition)
9. The Boondock Saints (Unrated Special Edition)
10. The West Wing - The Complete Sixth Season


1. Taking The Long Way - Dixie Chicks
2. All the Roadrunning - Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris
3. Stadium Arcadium - Red Hot Chili Peppers
4. We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions - Bruce Springsteen
5. Living With War - Neil Young
6. Surprise - Paul Simon
7. Pearl Jam - Pearl Jam
8. Home - Dixie Chicks
9. 10,000 Days - Tool
10. St. Elsewhere - Gnarls Barkley

Action Figures

1. South Park Figure: Cartman
2. South Park Figure: Hip Hop Cartman
3. South Park Figure: Kenny
4. South Park Figure: Big Gay Al
5. Marvel Legends Gift Pack Spider-Man classic Feasome Foes Gift Pack
6. The Corpse Bride 12" Fashion Doll
7. South Park Figure: Officer Barbrady
8. Batman Begins Action Cape Batman Figure
9. 12" Robocop Battle Damage
10. GI Joe Valor vs. Venom Ninja Cobra Imperial Procession

DVD: Incredible Hulk Complete First Season out July 18

Here are the details:

"...Don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry." Mild-mannered research scientist David Banner (Emmy nominee Bill Bixby) finds he must offer this heroic warning after exposure to gamma radiation transforms him into the terrifying and enraged Hulk (Lou Ferrigno). Bursting from comic book pages into this 4-disc DVD set, the Complete First Season of The Incredible Hulk boasts all ten heart-pounding episodes, plus a preview episode from Season Two. Must-see bonus materials include the two original feature-length films, an introduction from The Hulk himself (Ferrigno), and in-depth commentary from producer Kenneth Johnson. Intense. Immense. Incredible!

The set is available for pre-order from Amazon now.

"X-Men: The Last Stand" international character posters