Posted on

Comic Shop Talk Video Blog: September 2018

Hi Everyone!

The team is back at it again with another edition of Comic Shop Talk!  We cover a range of topics including The Return of Wolverine, the latest X-event called Xtermination, the latest Venom series, the crazy Rick and Morty/Dungeons and Dragon crossover, and some brief conjecture on the much-anticipated DC Heroes in Crisis storyline!

We hope you enjoy this latest video, which was a lot of fun to make, and be sure to look out for our September Pop Culture Video Blog coming soon!

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

Pop Culture Talk Video Blog: August 2018

Welcome to another edition of our Pop Culture Talk here at Great Stories!

This month Chris, Phil (Production Guy), and Tylor chat up the new Castle Rock series from Hulu, Ant-man & Wasp, the upcoming cross-over of Dungeons and Dragon with Magic the Gathering, and a couple other odds and ends.

We hope you enjoy the video!  Please comment on our Youtube page and let us know your thoughts, questions, and requests!

 

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

Pop Culture Talk Video Blog: July

Hi Everyone.  Two vids in one day!  Oh yeah.  Aren’t we on a roll?  🙂

In this past month’s Pop Culture Talk, we delve into Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom before we head back into Netflix territory with both Luke Cage Season Two and Voltron.  After that, we chat up Marvel’s Cloak and Dagger, which airs on Freeform and then finish the conversation with Westworld.

 

We are shooting two new vids tonight, which we promise to get out to you later this week!  What will we be talking about?  Well, you’ll just have to wait a few more days to find out.

 

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

Comic Shop Talk Video Blog: July

Hey Everyone,

We are a bit late in getting this video out to you but summer vacation schedules were the theme of the month.  But fear not, we are back!  This month we talk about lots of the new Marvel relaunches including Thor, Immortal Hulk, Tony Stark Iron Man, and Venom.  We also look at continuing series Champions and the wind down of the X-Men Gold book.  DC is not totally forgotten in this month’s edition as we discuss Teen Titans.  And we finish up by spotlighting the amazing Gideon Falls series from Image, which has just been optioned as a TV show!

https://youtu.be/vtm0HjIkhdQ

Comment on our Youtube page and let us know what you would like us to discuss next month!

 

 

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

His Name Was Jason: Friday the 13th the Video Game Review

Howdy Ho! Why hello there ladies and gents, yes it is true I have returned. Please hold the applause all autographs will be handled after.  This time around friends we are doing something a little different. Today we review “Friday the 13th The Game”.  You may notice this is titled “Part 3”. It’s pretty much an indictment on me, for this is the 3RD rewrite!!! Moving on, I have been dying to get this game since I heard of its inception. I finally got a PS4 for Christmas (thank you to all involved) and quickly spent Christmas money on the purchasing of “Friday The 13th the Game”. This Blog is going to be a little different from previous. There will be….. Structure!!!

History:

Before we go into game play a quick history on the making s of the game.  So Gun Media  started a  project of having an open world slasher game. “One Long Night at Summer Camp” was born. They wanted to bring in a few experts for the production of the game.  They got the help from Tom Savini with design and effects, and then they enrolled the killing expertise of Kane Hodder to perform the body capture of the games killer. As production began the people making the game figured, “You know what? We have the makeup and special effects artist from Friday the 13th and we have Jason Voorhees from 4 films doing the body capture. Why don’t we see if we can get the licensing to Friday The 13th”? The idea was pitched to the licensing holders of the franchise (more on licensing later). The company basically said “Finally this has the game platform we have been waiting for.”  “Friday the 13th The Game” has come to life.

The Introduction / Setup:

The introduction is really great. It’s first of all right where you would expect it to be, at the beginning of the game. It really does an excellent job setting up the Game for the 80’s horror fans that are about to embark on this adventure. The first thing that jumps out to me is the super 80’s intro. If you’ve watched enough movies from the 80’s you know what I’m talking about. From the music right down to the coloring and effects, it brought me right back to 1988.

Then you go right to the game home screen and there he is…. Jason looking as menacing as ever, the low creepy Friday the 13th music in the background with the classic “KI KI KI MA MA MA” is just something extra special.  There aren’t many game play options which I thought was tad disappointing. I was really hoping for a story mode or a “Grand Theft Auto” style open world where you can just go around and kill random people, maybe have different objectives. Does this devalue the game? Not at all. It doesn’t really need any of that.  You have two options of offline play, one being Offline bots. Basically you pick which Jason you want to be, options of part 2,3,4,6,7,8,9 are all available right from the start. My game came with the blood skin option, so basically you can select to have your Jason covered in blood splatter. After doing the first update, The NES skin became available for part 3 Jason which this guy was pretty stoked about.  It pays homage to the original Friday the 13TH game for Nintendo.   The second update performed gave me the option of part 5 Roy. Meh I could do without. Anyway you decide what Jason you’re going to play as. Then you decide the map, Crystal Lake, regular and small, Higgins Haven, regular or small, or Packanack Lodge. You select your desired location and then decide how many counselors you want to kill, set your difficulty and your off….you have 10 minutes to hunt down annihilate up to 8 counselors, including Tommy Jarvis.

The second option for offline play is Virtual cabin. This feature I find fun because you walk through a cabin, walk up to anything with an icon next to it and you get to learn facts about the Movie franchise or the making of the game as it pertains to that specific item.

Game Play:

For actual game play, it took me some time to get use to the controls so I can effectively use all of Jason’s abilities. There 3 different difficulty levels in offline play I would recommend getting good at controlling your Jason there before moving to online play. I found a problem with online play. I can basically play video games once maybe twice a month on average. When you play online you’re playing against people who have no other obligations in life and it makes for a tough time killing people. Once you get a hold of it the fun begins. The details in each map are incredible you’ll recognize different buildings and aspects of each map for the different movies. Walking around the different worlds as Jason obviously your objective is to kill the counselors. Jason finds his victims through sound signatures, you’ll see a blinking circle off in the distance and you go to it and kill it. Counselors can stop moving and control their breathing to eliminate sound signatures, but Jason has a answer for that by creating fear. Breaking windows, knocking out power and destroying stuff can insight fear in people and make them create a sound signature again.  Jason abilities are all pretty awesome and can make you feel like you are in the movie. His ability to Morph can make him just appear in front or just behind you without warning. As a counselor pay attention to the music, the louder the music the closer Jason is. Jason also has a Sense ability basically he is now for a duration of time able to pick up on heat signatures, where at baseline he finds people through audible signatures. He also a shift ability allowing him to move at an accelerated rate without producing sound and can sneak up on people from a good distance almost undetectable. The final ability is stalk, this allows Jason to quietly stalk his prey while giving him an almost night vision effect. You will have many chances to be the counselors.  They can be upgraded and have equipped with different equipment, but let’s be honest the whole reason we have the game to watch people get slaughtered or to do the annihilating ourselves as our favorite killer.

Violence/Killing:

If you followed my first blog for October Friday the 13th 2017 you’ll already know my 2 Year old watches Friday the 13th part 7 with me with no fear or problems at all. He actually likes the movies and once in awhile will request we watch it.  Friday the 13th the Game is too violent for my kid. Seriously young children should not watch this game be played. He never expressed fear or has blamed Jason for any freights but you can tell by the look on his face the game is too much for him. From my stand point that makes the game that much more awesome, because damn. They literally made this game the way the movies should have been. The Kills are so detailed and gruesome the game was never released in several countries due to the content. I was able to do the sleeping bag Kill which I just happened to be playing as Part 7 Jason. So if you find a counselor hiding in a tent, Jason pulls them out of tent in a sleeping bag and gives a tree two good whacks with the person. In the movie they do not show the actual kill, in the game it’s pretty brutal. My favorite kill so far, has a trophy title of “Cooking with Jason”. Jason Basically stomps the victim in a fire and keeps them there till they stop twitching.  Those are just a couple of the environmental kills. To perform an environmental kill grab a victim and take a walk if your able to hold on long enough, chances you’ll the chance to do one of the following, throw someone through a window, drowning, slamming skulls into to coat hooks effectively hanging the body up, along with many other possibilities. Aside from environmental kills there are equipped kills as well, some by weapon some by hand. You can punch decapitate, quarter, twist heads off, crush skulls and even rip a heart out.  The range and variety of ways you can kill and dismember people is worth the price of the game alone.

Updates/ Future:

The updates have been awesome so far, new world map, new kills and hell even new Jasons.  This game almost “it all”, how could there possibly be a bad thing to write about it? The Future looks bright too, Uber Jason is set to make an appearance along with the space station world map from “Jason X”.  There are even rumors of a new game mode, an open world Gran Theft Auto style game play. As great as this sounds the reality is a legal dispute holding up everything that is “Friday the 13th”. Turns out the original screen writer was never employed by the production company who made the original movie and therefore the original movie should never have been made, never mind 12 movies, a comic, 2 video games and anything else that represents the “Friday the 13th” franchise. Unfortunately Gun media is forced to wait until after the proceedings before they can find out if they can even update the game anymore. The case is also holding over a deeply anticipated movie that was actually set and scheduled to film 2 years ago. The Future at this point in time looks bleak for “Friday the 13th”, however things weren’t that bright when Jason fell into Crystal Lake, so who knows.  Until next time Kids, take care and happy killings.

Editing note:

This particular blog took me awhile to write, like a long time. Since the start to today a quick edit on “Jason is not to blame for any of my child’s fears”. Yeah we had to take down the picture of a teddy bear wearing a Jason mask picture from his bedroom. Whoopsy.

Posted on

Great Stories Pop Culture Talk June 2018

Hey Everyone….check out our ultra-spoilery video that discusses the teams thoughts on both Solo: A Star Wars Story and Deadpool 2!  Special thanks to our Production Team and Barry Giles for their support and making us look and sound better than ever.

 

We’d love to hear from you, so feel free to comment away and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

 

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

Great Stories Comic Shop Talk June 2018

Hey Guys…after a bit of a prolonged absence due to our team getting our production quality up to speed to give you a better experience with our videos, we have returned and hopefully now every month without fail!

In this month’s episode, we talk Dan Slott’s swan song Amazing Spider-Man #800, Chris indulges himself in discussing the recent Punisher run with War Machine armor, a couple of Wayne’s regular reads in Weapon H and the new Lando Calrissian comic series, Brian Bendis’ Man of Steel, and Ken makes mention of a couple of Indies on his radar!

 

We’d love to hear your thoughts, so comment on our video and contact us with anything you would like for us to discuss in future videos!

 

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

Pop Culture Talk Video Blog 4/24/18

Hey Everyone….we were down to a three man team last time we came together for a video, and with a new production team (please welcome Phil and Peirce to the crew!).  But where there were two missing friends, there were two additional cameras!  Fair trade, right?  Nah, we missed out on having Rob and Wayne join us.  Next time, we will do it right with everyone AND the extra camera angles!  Our videos are a work in progress and with some advancements in technology there are risks as well.  We sadly lost our entire Comic Shop Talk segment, which was probably our best discussion yet!  But no way should we be looking back.  We look ahead always and we will get better at this.  One thing to note aside from the multiple camera angles we get in this shoot is far better sound quality thanks to us all having mics.  Huge improvement!

 

In this episode, Ken, Tylor, and Chris discuss season two of Jessica Jones, the anticipated Avengers: Infinity War movies, the new Star Wars Legion miniature game, and the rumors of a new Teen Titans animated series that picks up where the old (early 2000’s series) left off!

 

We hope you enjoy this episode!

 

-The Great Stories Team

Posted on

His Name Was Jason: The Official Friday the 13th Blog (April Edition)

Our resident Friday the 13th super-fan and aficionado, Tom “Tominek” Vanner is back with a look at the mythology of the Mask.  Maybe he’ll clue you in on a few things you didn’t already know about the iconic horror villain?

Hello my friends, good seeing you have all come back to play along again. If you are reading this on a Friday that must mean one thing… It’s Thomas Jefferson’s Birthday!!! That’s right folks one of our founding fathers and the author of the Declaration of Independence was born today, April 13. Happy Birthday Tom!!! This one’s for you (holding up a “coffee” yes coffee.)

Anyway we all know the real reason why we have gathered today, to honor my friend and yours, Jason Voorhees. As some of you know, quick count around the room, ok so like 2 maybe 3 of you might know, whatever. I did 5 days of babbling on about Friday the 13th last October.  Well as it turns out I didn’t pay attention to a small detail, a tiny, tiny detail. You know nothing major just forgot to highlight JASON’S FREAKING MASK!!!

I know, I know you’re asking yourself “Tom how the hell did you forget about the mask?” First I didn’t forget about the mask I had talked about its progression through the movies.

You, “Dude really, you claim to be a Friday the 13th expert and you forget his mask, what a fraud.”

Ok honestly, hurtful. Secondly I NEVER CLAIMED TO BE AN EXPERT!!! (editor’s note:  Great Stories claimed that Tom was an expert.  Our bad! J/K.  What can we say?  Tom is humble.) So any way today we learn about the origins of Jason’s Iconic Hockey Mask.

Jason, as we all know made his first real on screen appearance in Part 2. He was never suppose to be an actual physical character, he was an idea, or really a motive.  At the end of “Friday the 13th” Jason was finally given a face for the sole purpose of a jump scare. With the success of the original film, it was only natural to make a part 2. However they knew they couldn’t have Pamela as the antagonist, since she ain’t got no head Lieutenant Dan.  The producers, screen writers or whomever’s job it was began an unofficial back story to Jason where he actually survived his drowning and grew up as a feral kid, so to speak.  Keeping with primitive living they decided a potato sack with a single strand of rope and an eye hole was the best way to go with a mask.

Fun story about the Potato sack though, As “Friday the 13th” was in production so was “The Elephant Man”, a drama in which the title character wore a potato sack to hide his face. A couple months after  the premier of “ The Elephant Man”,  “Friday the 13th  Part 2” came out  and had kind of a parody feel to it, which was not the intent of the film, obviously.

Part 3 enters conception at some point and the movie begins filming. The Crew knows the Potato sack isn’t working and they need a new direction. They were throwing around ideas and Martin Jay Sadoff happened to have a hockey mask with him, because a bunch of the crew had been on a hockey team together and would often play after filming each day. Martin had jokingly suggested using his hockey mask and then we don’t have to worry about makeup. They makeup tested it and the director or producer thought it was pretty scary.

Martin’s Mask was a Leather mask, and didn’t really fit Richard J Brooker’s head. They casted the Mask in a clear plastic and the mask designer for the film actually painted it from the inside out to prevent paint chipping.  There was a second cast done for the scene where Jason gets axed in the head.

Fast Forward to the debut of “Friday the 13TH Part 3”, and all their efforts paid off. The 3rd installment was a huge success.  The movie was released August 13th1982, I’ll let you guess what day of the week that was.  It wasn’t unit October 31 that year they had really seen the impact of the movie though. They saw kids all over buying up hockey mask to wear as their Jason costumes. At that point they knew if they were to continue the series the hockey mask had to stay, and the icon that is Jason Voorhees had finally been born.

What I find really fascinating about the whole thing is the consistency. Every Movie with exception of Part 5, (Roy you suck.) the makeup and design teams attempted to retain the original integrity of the Mask but did what was needed to carry the story. They kept consistent damage marks throughout each film while at the same time weathering and altering the mask to the current needs of the current film.

The icon that is Jason’s signature hockey mask is so profound that there are many, many people and companies that make replicas of each movies featuring mask. The one mask that gives people the most trouble is the original Part 3. The problem people have is the coloring. In most screen shots the mask appears white however, in some shots it has a yellowish aging to it. People have tried all kinds of paint combinations to mimic the effect and have been unsuccessful. The dirty little secret behind the Part 3 mask is the first layer of paint is actually a varnish. At different angles and lighting that is what gives the effect of “color change”.

In the Horror world there are many, masks and faces that stick out to viewers, Freddy’s burnt up mug, IT’s clown makeup (because well he’s a friggin clown), Pinhead’s ugly grill are all easily recognized. The Hockey mask of Jason Voorhees though, is truly a stand out look that in itself can insight a fear in someone by just being there. I can happily report that I have personally seen this happen through the eye hole in which Jason peers from.

I thank you again for spending some time reading what nonsense I have put together for you. Until next time, take care of yourself, watch something bloody, and remember it is never too early to work on your Halloween costume.

 

 

The information gathered about the origin of the mask was cited from the actual crew of “Friday the 13rth part “3 in a documentary, “Legacy of the Mask” which can be found on Youtube.