Well, yesterday was my birthday (Happy 31st to me), so I decided that, for my birthday, in lieu of a gift card or the like, which we normally do for each other, I asked N. Harmonik to get me a ticket to go see a movie. And what movie was it? Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows. And you know what? I had a great time. Yes, the movie is only good if you kinda shut your brain off and don’t think about it too much, but you know what? I know that going in. I knew, from the moment I saw Megan Fox in the initial trailer dressed like a schoolgirl-type whatever that this was gonna be dumb, but I went anyway. Why? Because it’s the Ninja Turtles. I was a HUGE Turtles fan as a kid. When my First Grade teacher couldn’t teach me to read and was just gonna try the same failing method over and over, my parents got me TMNT books and taught me to read with them. The first movie I ever remember seeing in theaters (though I’ve been told I’ve seen others beforehand) was the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie in 1990. My favourite colour is green. My favourite number is 4. So even if this was the suckiest suck that ever sucked, I was still gonna go and enjoy myself, because what were the odds that TMNT’s opening day was my birthday? And it actually WASN’T the suckiest, either. It was actually a lot better than the first one. Of course, that’s not saying much, and we’ll get to what was bad in a sec, but first, let’s talk about the stuff I really enjoyed.
First off, the stuff with the Turtles is actually good. In fact, I actually thought the emotional conflict between them was a lot better done and isn’t just Leonardo and Raphael not getting along Part Who-Knows-What-Anymore. Granted, we DO get more than a couple of arguments between the two, but…well, how do I put this?…You know how when there’s a personal issue with the team, Raph is usually Problem Turtle? Well, Raph is not Problem Turtle in this movie. He DOES do something that kinda screws things up bad, but in retrospect, if anyone is Problem Turtle in this movie, it’s Leo, and it’s not just a problem between those two, but the whole team. Donnie finds out that they can become human, and Leo, knowing that Raph and Mikey are the more sensitive of the team and how much they hate having to stick to the shadows, as well as how becoming human would kinda mess with the team’s overall effectiveness a bit, tells him to keep this between themselves. Of course, Michelangelo overhears anyway and tells Raph. What happens as a result is that we get it painted clear as day, and in fact, Splinter calls Leo out on this; Leo is a born leader when it comes to strategy and whatnot, but when it comes to balancing out the unique perspectives and character pros and cons of his brothers, he’s terrible, and he needs to figure out how to correct this problem. I thought analyzing that was a good idea. The resolution was a bit lacking, but it was still an aspect of the characters worth exploring.
I also really liked Bebop and Rocksteady. I don’t really understand why, in hindsight, it was necessary for Sheamus to completely change his hairstyle for this movie when he loses it upon becoming a mutant, and doing so instead has resulted in chants of “You look stupid!” for the past year, but whatever. There is one thing I have to nitpick, though: The way the mutagen works to turn Rocksteady and Bebop. Now, in the cartoon, they were mutated into a rhino and a warthog as they were the last creatures they came in contact with, and likely had residue of the creatures on their persons. It made sense. Here, the mutagen latches onto genetic markers that lead back to animals that the movie is pretending exists in us. It’s not even the animal spirit thing that the MMPR movie did, either. They specifically said it was in their genetic makeup. And without even missing a beat, with no regard for any of the looks I got, I just went “Of course! Don’t you know anything about science?!”
As far as some of the other characters go, I thought Kraang was silly, but in a way that works for him and harkens back great to the old cartoon. I thought it was a smart move that the Foot Clan are actually NINJAS in this movie, as opposed to whatever the hell they were supposed to be in the last one. I think they were just generic terrorists, but whatever. Shredder is played by someone else, but I don’t really mind that at all. What was funny was that I was about to comment how much I preferred the new, black, heavily-streamlined costume he wore in this one as opposed to when he was Shredder-tron in the last one…right before he was completely under-minded as a legit villain in this movie by Kraang. Casey was kinda on the bland side, but he was still okay. Of all the human characters in this movie, I probably felt for his situation most, although it was a weird direction when you’re more used to the more mainstream interpretations of the character. But again, he’s still alright…which is actually something that makes him better than pretty much every single human character on the good guys’ side in the entire movie. Really, the biggest problem this movie has is whenever we leave the Turtles and focus on the humans, because the good guys of the human cast are just not that interesting or engaging.
Which, of course, brings us to Megan Fox. I’m just gonna be blunt here, and I want everyone to understand where I’m coming from with this…It’s 2016, right? It’s 2016, and I’m still having it crammed down my throat that Megan Fox is sexy. You know? Like, it’s 20-fucking-16, and that’s STILL her only real contributor. Like, we can’t just have her ACT and get her roles over by acting, because that would require effort, so instead, we just gotta push Megan Fox out there, WITH TOP BILLING, FYI, and have her be sexy. I’m sorry, but she’s just not a good actress. I can’t pretend she is. And as far as the character of April as presented in this movie goes, I don’t even know where you go with her after this. She’s the Turtles’ connection to the human world. Fine. Guess what? We now have Casey and THE ENTIRE NYPD that can fill that role. And what is so perplexing about this is that this is all the same shit that happened with the Transformers movies, and Megan Fox quit those! Now she’s doing the same shit again, working under the same person she had problems with before! And she said she wanted to play the role because she really loved the character, and you know what, maybe she DOES love the character of April O’Neil. I’m not calling her a liar. That could very well be true. But even if it is, we have to accept one very important, minor issue: SHE’S NOT A GOOD ACTRESS! I do not spend money to go see a movie just because the actors are pretty. But, so long as we’re on the subject, not only is Stephen Amell’s performance in this movie better than Megan Fox’s, not only do I care a lot more for him and his back-story (admittedly, probably not as much as they want me to, but whatever), and not only does he play off the Turtles a bit better, but guess what? He’s also a lot prettier.
Anyway, overall, I still enjoyed this movie. When the story focuses on the personality traits and faults of the Turtles, as well as seeing them in action, it’s a good movie. Maybe not one you wanna think too hard about, but still is at least fun and worth checking out. And to be perfectly honest, I kinda knew, going in, what it was that REALLY was gonna make this movie much better than the previous one: They took the more absurd, insane, and just impossible-to-take-seriously aspects of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (which, as an old-school fan, I can tell you, there are MANY of), and just had fun with them. It’s not ashamed to be Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. It doesn’t try to hide any of these aspects. It just goes full-blown with them. And I cannot tell you how much I appreciate that. They iron out the other issues with the movies thus far, and the third one should be GREAT. So, lemme know what YOU thought of this movie (if you saw it, that is), and we’ll see if they learn anything more when it finally comes time for the third movie. Take us out, CD9.
…Oh yeah, and Baxter Stockman was annoying as shit, and the product placement was STILL really irritatingly blatant. lol Ja né!
Well, time for another WWE PPV, which means time for my predictions. Let’s not waste any time and dive into the first match predictions.
Well, if you saw my previous Jyger The Mark entry, you know how I feel about SOMEBODY in this match. Since I’ve already had my VERY angry rant about him though, I’ll opt not to talk about that again here. Instead, I’d like to point out, obvious that this is, that this is Daniel Bryan’s biggest challenge to date as far as defending his title. Should he win, he’ll move on to WrestleMania as the champion. And frankly, that’s what I’d like to see happen, for him to win this match and face Sheamus at WrestleMania, especially since the last time they were to fight at ‘Mania, it ended up becoming a Dark Match (non-televised match), which I felt was a slap in the face of all their hard work.
Predicted Winner: Daniel Bryan
Surprisingly enough, I am actually kinda interested in this match. I wanna see how these two match up in a one-on-one match where the belt is on the line. I’m thinking what will happen is that Beth wins, continuing the story wherein she claims there are no legit contenders for the title, which will likely lead to a match between her and Kharma when she comes back from maternity leave.
Predicted Winner: Beth Phoenix
A love triangle blossoming? Has John Cena embraced the hate? Will Kane emerge victorious, or will his own evil deeds be returned in kind? Has Zack Ryder officially become a Jackass stuntman? And can this scenario become any more like a soap opera?…Okay, seriously though, how much you wanna bet that Eve was in on this the whole time, that she was working with Kane? Wouldn’t surprise me one bit. Anyway, much as I don’t wanna go against Kane, Cena needs momentum going into WrestleMania, so I’m gonna say Cena for the win.
Predicted Winner: John Cena
…I find myself in an odd position with this match in that, honestly, I don’t really care so much as how this match goes as how the fallout goes. Basically, regardless of who wins this match, I see four of the six going back to business as usual, while the other two BETTER be having a match at WrestleMania. But since I HAVE to make a prediction, I’m gonna say Chris Jericho to somehow take the belt away from CM Punk, leading to a match between them at WrestleMania. Either way though, if WWE has any sense at all, and I feel that this is what they are going for anyway, they will set up CM Punk vs. Chris Jericho at WrestleMania, which would in my opinion steal the f-ing show. So why Jericho to win instead of Punk? Well, basically because I think if the belt is involved in their feud, Punk would operate better going into ‘Mania as the hunter, not the hunted.
Predicted Winner: Chris Jericho
Well, that’s all from me. Enjoy the show tonight, and hopefully I’ll be able to cover the results tomorrow. Ja ne!
Okay, so the Royal Rumble has come and gone, so now’s as good enough a time to look and see how I did in my predictions, as well as talk about some of the highlights from the show.
Since the show started with the Steel Cage Match, I’ll start off there. So yeah, pretty much like I thought it would go, with the three of them laying some pretty good beatings on one another, but ultimately Daniel Bryan managed to slip away with the win…quite literally, actually, since Big Show had him in a death grip above the ring and Bryan slipped out of his grasp to fall to the floor below, thus getting the win.
Afterwards, there was a bonus match: An 8-Diva Tag Match. I didn’t really care much for it. Don’t get me wrong, I like Natalya and Beth Phoenix, and I guess Kelly Kelly and Eve are alright, but…well, I guess I’ll just say it: Will somebody please tell me why the hell Alicia Fox got a match on a PPV? She is one of the worst piece of shit wrestlers I have ever seen in my life. Anyway, not much to say, Team Phoenix got the win.
So my reasoning behind Kane winning his match by DQ was simple: Cena needed momentum going into his match with The Rock, and Kane shouldn’t have lost his first big match back. I figured, how else could they pull this off? Well apparently, there was one way that I didn’t think of: A double count-out. Oh, and when it was over, Kane beat the crap outta Cena, got ahold of the already injured (on-screen that is) Zack Ryder, and gave him a Tombstone Piledriver just for fun. So yeah, should be interesting to see where this goes.
After that, I’m pretty sure there was a match between Drew McIntyre and Brutus Clay…At least I think there was. As soon as I saw Brutus come out and start dancing, I retreated into the dark recesses of my mind. Anyway, double checking on Wrestleview.com showed me that Brutus won with the…err, “What The Funk” Body Splash?…Okay…
CM Punk vs. Dolph Ziggler was again what I expected…with a slight twist, in that John Laurinaitis assigned a different in-ring referee and he essentially became the Special Enforcer/back-up referee. Punk and Ziggles (no I didn’t misspell it, that’s just what I call him sometimes) put on a good show, as I figured they would. I just hope that next time Ziggler gets a shot at the title, the story has more to do with him and not the guy officiating. Anyway, CM Punk wins with Laurinaitis getting in the ring to count along with the ref, continuing the current angle of him trying to suck up to everyone so that he’ll keep his job.
Finally, we came to the Royal Rumble. Before I get to the winner, lemme talk about some of my favourite moments from this Rumble…
As I’ve made clear to people I talk to about wrestling, I really can’t stand Santino. I find him to be a waste of money, especially when you consider that the only reason he ever got a job with WWE is that he gave them a reason to fire Jim Cornette. However I will note that he usually gives some HILARIOUS moments at the Rumble, and this year was no different as he and Mick Foley had a stand off, resulting in them pulling out Mr. Socko and The Cobra. Yeah, forget Cena vs. Rock, forget Hogan vs. Andre, Mr. Socko vs. The Cobra could totally headline Wrestlemania.
Oh, we had some good ones this year. Not including Chris Jericho and Mick Foley, since we knew they’d be in already, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, The Great Khali, and even Kharma all returned to take a crack at winning the Rumble.
I honestly didn’t think anyone could ever beat John Morrison’s use of parkour to avoid elimination, and then I saw THAT. I should definitely make a list of some of the most eye-popping moments in the Rumble, but for now, let us just say that ranks pretty high.
Yep, believe it or not, all three announcers entered the Royal Rumble this year, all the while I was laughing my ass off. And believe it or not, Michael Cole actually lasted longer than The King before…well, remember how I talked about those returns?
If I could, I would make that my screen saver. Seriously, that one move should award her a Slammy.
Anyway, on to the actual winner. You’ll recall I originally picked Chris Jericho, Sheamus, Randy Orton, or Wade Barrett to possibly win the Rumble. And as it turned out, three out of those four made it to the final four of the Rumble, with Jericho, Orton, and Sheamus staring each other and the 30th Entrant, The Big Show, down. Big Show was surprisingly the first of the four to go out, being eliminated by Orton, but then Jericho quickly tossed Orton out as well. After a LONG back and forth fight between Jericho and Sheamus, with multiple near-eliminations between the two, it finally ended with one good kick to the face of Chris Jericho, knocking him from the apron to the floor below, thus awarding Sheamus the victory as he will now move on to challenge the champion of his choosing in the main event at Wrestlemania.
Well, that’s all from me. Hope you all enjoyed the Rumble as much as I did.
So, I’m going to the Royal Rumble tonight. I generally don’t go to PPVs that often because they’re flipping expensive, but I generally try to go to the Royal Rumble because it’s my favourite since the Royal Rumble match itself pretty much stands for everything that I like about wrestling: Chaotic entertainment that is VERY hard to predict the outcome of. While I’m likely gonna be doing another blog entry where I talk about the results tomorrow (hopefully), I just wanted to make a few predictions on the show first.
I feel really, really bad for Dolph Ziggler going into this match, and I will tell you why: Because the plot going into this match, the main story arc that this match is a part of, has NOTHING to do with Dolph Ziggler. This story is about CM Punk and John Laurinaitis. Ziggler is basically there to be the challenger, nothing more, nothing less. And it’s sad because I think him and Punk could have a great rivalry, but this is not about a rivalry between the two of them. They’ve even gone so far as to eliminate the possibility of Ziggler beating Punk for the title, it’s more a question of whether or not Laurinaitis will screw Punk out of the championship, and that’s kinda sad. Still, I expect these two to put on a hell of a match, and really, that’s the most important part, right?
Predicted Winner: CM Punk
No, you know what, before I get to the match, I need to address something that I think a lot of people have been ragging on: Kane’s new attire. Watching videos on YouTube of Kane’s return, I’ve seen commenters (which spell checker says is not a real word btw) say that his new look is ridiculous. I have the following reply to such: WHY DO YOU CARE?! Have you actually been watching what he’s been doing since coming back?! He coulda come back dressed like Doink The Clown and I wouldn’t have cared, because the only thing that matters is that when you are standing across the ring from this Kane, you better fight for your life or he might just take it from you. PERIOD!
Anyway, as far as the match goes, I suspect that Kane will win via DQ, with Cena finally snapping as a result of Kane breaking his friend Zack Ryder’s back and will finally embrace the hate. The hate for Kane. What happens afterwards is anyone’s guess.
Predicted Winner: Kane via DQ
I find what they’re doing with Daniel Bryan to be kind of intriguing. He hasn’t REALLY turned full heel YET, but you kinda feel like he’s going to. Surprisingly though, I actually find Mark Henry’s current persona going into this match as being the one I like most: The one that doesn’t care about the girl in the hospital and if she really forgives Big Show for accidentally tackling her or not, and not caring about who is on the level about what they say. He’s just coming to kick some ass and get his belt back. So between the animosity between Big Show and Daniel Bryan and Mark Henry’s intent to get his belt back, EXPECT EXTREME BRUTALITY.
Predicted Winner: Daniel Bryan via Escape
This is one where I simply do not have one predicted winner, but that’s good because this is a match where I just like to sit back and see what happens and make predictions on the fly. The only thing I know for certain is that The Miz will be entering at #1, making him the least likely individual to win, but then stranger things have happened at the Rumble, which is what makes it so fun. Oh, and I know this much too: If Santino Marella wins the Rumble (because he came very close last year), I will protest. BIG TIME.
Possible Winners: Chris Jericho, Sheamus, Randy Orton, Wade Barret
…Anyway, that’s all from me, and I guess I’ll see what happens in a few hours.