“We’re pretending the other films were a bad dream.”
That was what Terminator 1 & 2 director James Cameron had to say to The Hollywood Reporter regarding the past three films.
I wrote before about how the famed writer/director/producer/deep sea explorer is returning as a producer to the Terminator franchise, which has seen a steady decline since his departure after Terminator 2: Judgement Day. Tim Miller, director of the incredibly successful Deadpool film, will be taking over as director of this Terminator reboot.
I am one of the minority of fans that didn’t mind Rise of the Machines. I’m not saying it was as good as the first two iconic films, but I don’t think it was a failure either. You will never hear me say the same thing about Genisys…
As I mentioned in a previous article, all we know for sure about the story is that it will explore the origin of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s T-800 Terminator model. Per Cameron
Both Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton have said that they will return for the project. No word yet on Edward Furlong, Robert Patrick or what remains of Axel Rose’s voice…
I have bins and bins of my old mid to late 80’s G.I. Joe toys in the basement. I’ve been holding onto them so that one day I can play with them with my son.
Now that Lil’ G will be turning 1, my wife and I spent some time in the basement going through the toys to see what we have. I had to spend much of the time defensively describing what various weapons and vehicles were and how they were used. (She was slightly less impressed than I was.)
It left me with the realization that many of the G.I. Joe weapons and vehicles I found to be so cool as a child were actually idiotic Kamikaze machines and I would never want to take into actual combat as an adult!
Here are Geeky Daddy’s Top Ten G.I. Joe Vehicles & Weapons You Don’t Want To Take Into Combat!
Disclaimer: I am only pulling from the 1982 series I to 1991 series X. Series XI started the Eco Warriors, Drug Enforcement, neon colored weapons and other nonsense of whose existence I refuse to acknowledge.
If you go out with two buddies on a Saturday night and you’re the one that gets stuck in the back seat, it’s safe to assume you’re the least popular person in your crew.
The same rule applies to G.I. Joe’s HAVOC. If you’re riding into armored vehicle combat and your two buddies get to ride indoors (granted their only protection is glass?) and you are forced to ride on top of the vehicle completely exposed to enemy fire, the elements and the concussive force from your own canons, you are by far, the least popular person in the crew.
Even if you are one of the “cool” crew members that enjoys the comforts of being indoors, you still had to wonder what the design engineers were smoking. Had they never heard of ergonomics? The drivers lay on their stomach and utilize joysticks above their shoulders? I strained my neck just looking at them.
And seriously, the best armor they could come up with for the crew compartment was glass? At that point, the only worse idea might be to just dip the whole darn thing in chrome and make it an easier target for enemy to spot on the battlefield…which they later did for the Sky Patrol edition of the HAVOC.
On paper, the General isn’t all that bad. It has a heavy main gun, strategically placed smaller arms around the vehicle for protection from infantry attack, an accompanying helicopter for scouting and protection and an armored cabin for the driver and commander. This is a tough, big vehicle.
Emphasis on “big”. As in way too big and heavy to fit across a bridge or maneuver through urban, rocky or forested terrain “big”. So unless you are advancing on your enemy over a vast open tundra, the General is basically a huge, un-maneuverable land barge of a target for enemy aircraft or artillery.
But hey, at least the designers didn’t make it out of chrome.
What the heck is going on with this thing and where do we start?
We have already established that for some asinine reason, G.I. Joe combat engineers view glass as being effective armor, which makes this one of the safest combat vehicles in the Cobra motor pool I guess.
If you think this is “one stupid looking vehicle”, you are mistaken. The Bugg is actually “multiple stupid looking vehicles” in one!
The sphere in front detaches to form an underwater vehicle that looks like it floated right out of a Roger Moore era James Bond film. The Bugg also comes with two, what I am going to go ahead and label as “Tactical jet ski hovercraft type things”.
Also, as mentioned earlier with the HAVOC, if you are the crew member forced to go into combat completely exposed outside the vehicle, you are not as well liked as you thought you were. With that in mind, if you are the Bugg crew member who is assigned to lay down outside the tank next to a missile (whose blast exhaust would barbecue you), you may want to start asking yourself why nobody likes you…
Remember earlier we mentioned something about leaving crew members exposed to enemy fire and the elements?
Enter Cobra’s F.A.N.G. helicopter! This poor pilot is seated practically outside the helicopter with only like 12 inches of clearance between his head and the propeller.
I don’t see any ear protection, eye protection or even a seat belt. Not even any stupid glass for protection. I’m guessing that OSHA or the NTSB never approved these plans.
This left Hasbro scrambling and quickly signed William “The Refrigerator” Perry, who had just gained worldwide recognition for his part in the Chicago Bears 1986 Super Bowl win.
That is fine. What isn’t fine is the weapon somebody decided to send him into combat with: A football attached to a stick. That’s it. Nothing else. Not even a Gatorade bottle to replenish lost electrolites.
It is a ball! And he can’t even throw it at enemy combatants to cover a teammate because it is attached to a stick!
Destro’s Iron Grenadiers D.E.M.O.N.
This tank actually looks pretty cool. Nice color scheme, it has canons, missiles and only a limited amount of what I am now referring to as ‘transparent armor’ (i.e. glass).
According to the packaging, D.E.M.O.N. stands for Dual Elevating Multi-Ordinance Neutralizer. That sounds pretty…wait a second…”Elevating”? As in vertically stand up taller?
Why would you want to take a huge target and turn it into a taller, less stable and more vulnerable huge target?
And, for that matter, how is this even supposed to work? Tank treads don’t spin 90 degrees or slide horizontally. If technology exists to create hydraulics that powerful, maybe they can produce transparent armor?
Sgt. Slaughter’s Triple T
Couple major issues with the poorly named ‘Tag Team Terminator’. Nice wrestling cliche though.
First off, does anybody actually ride inside tanks in the G.I. Joe universe? I know Sgt. Slaughter is tough, but wouldn’t this tank be more effective if he were concealed behind some type of armor, even the transparent kind (glass)? Are those rock hard pecs supposed to stop enemy bullets? At least give the guy a coat in case it rains.
My second issue with this ‘Terminator’ is its complete lack of any purpose whatsoever. It is a tank armed with only 2 little small caliber guns and two little missiles (whose exhaust back blast would kill any ride alongs it takes into battle anyway).
So it is a treaded vehicle with virtually no firepower, can only carry two soldiers and its pilot can be taken out with a slingshot (or even the Fridge’s tactical football).
Please give my contact info to the procurement office that placed the order for this vehicle. I have a solar powered flashlight and a patent on a black hi-lighter to sell them.
Cobra Imp or G.I. Joe R.V.P.
Speaking of deadly friendly fire via missile exhaust backlash, let me introduce you to the G.I. Joe R.P.V. and Cobra IMP.
First, in the case of the Remote Piloted Vehicle ( or R.P.V.), if a dude needs to sit in a pilot seat on the vehicle, it is not “remote piloted”.
Second, do the engineers simply have no clue how rocket propulsion actually works or do they simply not like their own soldiers?
Rocket blasts are hot and I don’t mean “sexy” hot, I am talking about the “Ouch, that friggin’ burns to the touch!” hot.
How are you going to fire these missiles literally inches from peoples heads and not expect them to come back showing off their best Uncle Owen from Star Wars impression?
Iron Grenadiers Razorback
The Razorback is probably best described as an amalgam of bad ideas wrapped into one unique bad idea. Let’s run through the list:
Protecting the crew against enemy fire with nothing but a piece of glass? check!
Elevates to make itself an easier target for enemy gunners? Check!
Rather than being camouflaged or olive green colored to blend into surroundings, the Razorback painted a vibrant color enemy bombers could spot miles away? Check! (I mean if this color were on a Sherwin Williams paint deck, it’d be called “Center Of The Sun Yellow”)
At least nobody is riding on the outside of this death trap, I guess.
Rock & Roll II’s 4 mini-guns
Mini-guns are awesome…and heavy.
They are awesome and heavy because they fire a lot of bullets very, very quickly. Like up to 6,000 rounds a minute quickly.
Now, granted Rock & Roll has biceps that are proportionally bigger than my thighs, but I still gotta believe that these guns would be a little heavy to carry into combat empty, much less loaded with tens of thousands of rounds of ammunition!
I am no math savant, but I did a little multiplication here.
Most mini-guns fire 7.62 MM ammo.
30 rounds of 7.62 MM ammo weighs about .5 Kilos (1.1 lbs).
The second edition Rock & Roll action figure had 4 of these mini-guns (which fire approx 6,000 rounds per minute each) which he would fire simultaneously.
This means that in order for Rock & Roll to sustain 30 seconds of continuous fire, he would need 12,000 rounds of ammo (otherwise known as a $#!T-ton). We are talking around 400 lbs of ammo alone! No wonder he hit the gym so hard between 1982 and 1989, or began taking the same supplements that Barry Bonds did.
Plus, how could he possibly have any control or aim when unloading that much heat? He might start off aimed at a particular target, but after the first nano-second of recoil, he would basically be reduced to firing blind anti aircraft fire. Ventura could barely control one mini-gun in Predator and yet this dude is simultaneously blasting 4 of them! Anything within the same zip code would be fair game.
You know how sometimes you say something incredibly stupid as a joke or just to see if somebody is paying attention? Or maybe do something dumb on a drunken dare?
Well, even if that was not the case with the Cobra Pogo Ballistic Battle Ball, that is the story Hasbro should roll with when people ask about this monstrosity.
Like a Pogo stick, this vehicle bounces literally straight up and down repeatedly, which has got to have some negative impact on the pilot’s aim, not to mention his spine. I assume, unlike the F.A.N.G. helicopter, that the pilot is seat belted in so he doesn’t go flying through the (you guessed it) glass canopy.
The Pogo is also armed with a pair of missiles…that fire directly into the sky. So unless you are directly under your enemies bomber and, you know, they haven’t already bombed you, I guess you could shoot them down.
What are your thoughts?
Are there any mid to lat 80’s G.i. Joe vehicles I missed that you would hate to ride into combat in?
He had a blast playing in a pit of baby friendly Duplo Lego blocks,with quite a few other babies and toddlers. As is the case with any group of young children, many of the Duplos were being tasted by the children because that is simply what young kids do.
Why? Who knows. Maybe they were wondering if different colored blocks tasted better than others. All I cared about was letting my little sidekick have fun with the glistening slobber covered plastic blocks while protecting him as best as possible.
Were his hands a petri dish of germs and nastiness by the time he was done? Absolutely more than I’d like to think about. I’m sure they could have used in a high school science class to teach kids about communal diseases.
But thanks to the pacifier he was unable to put the spit covered blocks or his chubby little germ covered digits in his mouth.
When we picked him up, we simply wiped him down with some baby wipes from our Storksak diaper bag.
Does it keep him as safe as quarantining him in a bubble? Nope. But I would rather he experience things in life than watch other kids experience them.
Now that he is close to 12 months, I do want to start weening him off the pacifier. I don’t want him to walk up to me one day, pop out his pacifier and ask to borrow the car keys, but until he is old enough to understand “Don’t put that in your mouth”, this works.
I don’t want him going through life wrapped in proverbial (or actual) bubble wrap. I want him to experience being a kid and have fun, but I also don’t want him crawling around town putting every nasty little thing within arms reach in his mouth either.
A few of my buddies have been trying to convince me to get involved in building Legos. I keep hearing it is “a relaxing way to mentally decompress” after work and the kids.
So this weekend, the Geeky Family met up with my high school buddy Elon (Lego enthusiast and advocate) and his daughters for the Lego Brickworld show at the Surburban Collection Showcase Center in Novi Michigan.
I was floored at the creativity and skill levels they had on display! (We left our mark on the graffiti wall!)
The world of Legos is so much more vast and complex than the basic solid color blocks I remember it as a kid.
Here is just a taste of what we saw. (Please keep in mind that pictures and videos can only do these sets so much justice)
Walking in the door, the first thing you see is a gigantic recreation of the U.S.S. Missouri battleship.
This ship was made famous in 1945 when representatives of the Japanese Empire officially surrendered on its deck, ending World War II.
But enough with the history lessons.
How about some “Geeky” stuff!
Like a space mining colony!
One vendor had an amazing set up (over a hundred linear feet) of motorized Lego factory sets linked in unison. Utilizing computers and timing software, they were able to create an assembly line that moved tiny soccer balls along the entire circuit!
Or a little more classic Star Wars like the Moon of Endor and the second Death Star from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi!
The Lego sets were not just limited to good Star Wars movies either. There was also a gigantic set depicting a scene from Star Wars: Attack of the Clones. (Sorry for the video being horizontal, not sure what happened there)
There was lots of local flair as well as the Detroit area was well represented by the Lego creators!
General Motors Renaissance Center
Ann Arbor’s Michigan Theater
Detroit’s Griswold Building
Detroit’s Dime Building/ Chrysler House
Detroit’s Guardian Building
The Wayne County Building
The Renaissance Faire!
Even the Grand Hotel on Machinac Island complete with horse poop (thankfully, Legos are not scratch ‘n’ sniff)
But the show wasn’t just for the adults, there were plenty play areas for the kids to do their thing.
Which, for Lil’ G-Man, meant crawling around aimlessly and tossing things on the floor. Just like home.
It was a lot of fun, we met some great people and are looking forward to the next Brickworld event! Thanks Elon!
My wallet is fortunate enough that Lil’ G-Man is still to young for this, but those days are ending soon…
Tomorrow (Saturday 23rd) is Batman Day and Build-A-Bear is joining in the fun with new characters from DC Comics. Included are a online exclusive Harley Quinn (celebrating her 25th anniversary) and Joker bears, as well as sneak peaks at the new Justice League characters that will be released mid October to coincide with the movie.
Currently, Build-A-Bear has Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman costumes available for your bears, but these will be complete kits.
1991’s Terminator 2: Judgement Day was undoubtably the high point in the franchise. James Cameron’s masterpiece combined ground breaking special effects with an excellent story, terrific action and memorable characters.
However, since it’s release over 25 years ago, each sequel has arguably gotten progressively worse, culminating in 2015’s Terminator: Genisys‘s half assed attempt at a reboot.
I mean, seriously, at that point the story would have been better if they had just sent the Terminator back to November 5th 1955 to assassinate Sarah Conner’s parents at the Enchantment Under the Sea Dance.
Terminator 2also happens to be the last film that writer, director, producer and amateur oceanographer James Cameron was involved with. But all of that will change in 2019 when the rights to the franchise revert back to Cameron.
Cameron, who will be tired up for the foreseeable future with however many dozens of new Avatarfilms he is planning, will be producing the 6th Terminator film and has confirmed that Deadpooldirector Tim Miller will be heading the new film.
Deadpool was Miller’s first director credit on a major motion picture and was an incredible success, both financially and among hardcore fans of the character. But a Terminator film will be a bit of a departure from the wise-cracking comic book anti-hero.
All we know for sure so far about the story is that it will explore the origin of returning star Arnold Schwarzenegger’s T-800 character. Per Cameron:
There is no denying the quality of product that James Cameron brings to the screen, some of the highest grossing films of all time are his work. I am glad to see him taking over the franchise and look forward to the 6th film.
Side note: The original plan for the first Terminator movie was for Arnold Schwarzenegger to play the hero Kyle Reese and former NFL pro and current parolee (and un-convicted ex-spouse murderer) O.J. Simpson to play the Terminator. It is impossible to not be curious how different the franchise may have turned out if that plan for the first film had come to fruition.
What are your thoughts about the Terminator franchise? And how can the soundtrack possibly top Slash’s guitar rifts from the Guns ‘N’ Roses You Could Be Mine?
It is a controversial discussion that every family needs to have at some point. It can lead to impassioned debates, fist fights, spilled eggnog and even permanently divide families.
The controversial topic I’m talking about isn’t a trivial topic like politics, religion or gun control, but serious stuff.
Is DIE HARD one of the “best Christmas movies” of all time?
I look forward to the day that Lil’ G-Man is old enough to enjoy the tail of how John McClane descended down the chimney on Christmas Eve to deliver some 9mm rounds to a bunch of European terrorists in the whimsical world of Los Angeles. (Seriously, how much Jingle All The Way or Charlie Brown Christmas can a person take?)
Available on October 17th on Amazon and listed as low as $10, this wonderful bedtime story will be the perfect way to introduce your child to the true meaning of Christmas: The launch of Bruce Willis’s action hero career.
The book will obviously show multiple violent scenes, so some parental discretion will be advised, but blood splatters can always be explained away as ketchup or cranberry sauce splatters.
Lil’ G-Man has been taking mini 2 swim classes with Arman at Goldfish Swim School Farmington Hills now for a few months. Lil’ G-Man absolutely loves it and I have been surprised at how quickly and easily he has taken to the water.
I will admit when we first signed up Grayson for swim lessons and I heard our instructor was a man named Arman, I did not envision him looking like the Hercules that spent his free time saving the universe with the Avengers. But Arman looks like he may have eaten that Hercules for breakfast and then gone back to the buffet for more protein!
It is actually pretty humorous watching this gentle giant working with the babies in Goldfish’s Mini 1 and Min 2 classes. He grins ear to ear while using an orange puppet to sing nursery rhymes or encouraging the kids to kick and pull in the water.
GeekyDaddy (GD): Tell us about how you got started here at GoldFish Swim School.
Arman Ahrabian (AA): I actually live right nearby and saw they had an opening.
GD: So did you have previous swimming or life guard experience?
AA: Yes, I was a lifeguard elsewhere but the part of the job I enjoyed the most was interacting with the children and families. This has been my primary job for about 6 years now and I love it. I have one class left before I finish up my degree in finance.
GD: I know Goldfish is strict about certifications for their instructors. Please tell us a little about what certifications are required and what is involved with getting certified.
AA: We are all Ellis certified which has very in-depth in water lifesaving training. I had always been Red Cross certified until I came to Goldfish. Both certifications are very extensive and requires a lot of practice.
GD: So as we look around the room and we see the dozens of instructors in the bright orange rash-guard tops, they all went through an intensive certification process?
AA: Yes. And we all get re-certified annually. CPR, First Aid, AED, life guarding – everything is 1 year.
GD: What is the biggest hurdle you have teaching little children how to swim?
AA: I think it’s just bringing the child in to see and trust somebody new in their life. We are a very safe environment. As you remember with Grayson, on the 1st day we don’t put their head underwater. We start off with just water to the chin and then we eventually go up from there. We try to keep them calm and show them everything is ok.
But then we also have the parents that won’t let their kid experience something different. They try to coddle them and take the kid away, but the child needs to experience the water and learn that they are going to be ok.
GD: Do you ever experience resistance from the parents when it comes time to graduate to the next level of lessons? Either the “my child is not ready yet” or the opposite “my child is to advanced for this”?
AA: Oh yes, of course. There are certain skills at each level that the supervisor is looking for to determine if the child is ready for the next level. Such as Junior I where the instructor is looking to see the child swim 5 ft to the island in the pool, turn around and swim 5 ft back to the bench. That is the end goal for Junior I. That goal doubles for Junior II and so on. The distances progressively get further and further and the skills we are looking for get more difficult and more technical as the child moves through the curriculum. Dolphin kick, side breath and so on.
GD: So it sounds like a lot of thought and research has been worked into the process.
AA: Yes, exactly. The process works, I have seen it work for so many kids over the years.
GD: I know you teach a wide range of age groups. What is your favorite age group to teach?
AA: I love the baby classes! I was initially told I would not be able to teach the baby classes because I am too big and intimidating. I love that I am the first person they get to work with other than mom and dad.
I also love our Pro 2 level. These are kids a bit older that want to be pushed harder. These are kids that are not old enough to be on a swim time but want to be prepped for a swim team.
GD: From your experience teaching multiple age groups, have you found that there is a certain age window that is the perfect time to start getting them used to the pool? I guess they can never be ‘too old’ but is there an age that is ‘too young’?
AA: The main thing is to make sure the baby can hold their own head up, which I suppose is around 6 months. They need to be able to use their little muscles to keep their head up. I think, from what I have seen, 2-years-old is perfect because then we can get a few months in the baby classes and move right into the big pool with the teacher and the student.
GD: We mentioned earlier that you are in the process of finishing up your finance degree. What is next for you when your swim instructing days are done. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
AA: I would like to have a job with some meaning. My ultimate goal is to someday work for the Department of Defense. Whether it been in logistics or inventory management, just something as a civilian where I still feel I can give something back.
GD: I feel safer already. Time for the main question of the interview that I am sure everyone has really been wanting me to ask you.
AA: Uhhh.. ok…
GD: DC’s Aquaman or Marvel’s Namor: The Sub Mariner?
AA: Oh Aquaman of course!
GD: Yes! I agree! Now why do you think Aquaman gets such a bad rap? He has an awesome skill set (super strength, endurance, telepathy) and yet people think of him as the Ken doll of the Justice League only being able to find the best tuna fish sandwich in the tri-county area or something.
AA: I agree. In the new Justice league movie coming out, he has the build, he is jacked, long hair, the trident, he looks serious…he just portrays the masculinity that the old cartoon never had with the green pants.
(notice he didn’t mention the old Aquaman’s orange shirt…)
GD: Lastly, if you could have any super power, what would it be?
AA: Super Strength!
GD: You look like you have that already. How much can you currently dead lift?
AA: I’m currently at 660 lbs but my goal is a 700 lb deadlift, 750 lb squat and 450 lb bench press.
GD: Wow. Well if GeekyDaddy throws a Halloween party this year, we are giving you the Krylon touch, painting you green and you are invited as the incredible Hulk.
Last question: Every super hero needs some theme music. If you were a super hero or professional athlete, what would be your theme music or your walk out music?
AA: Welcome to Detroit by Enimem.
GD: Way to keep it local! Thanks for your time today and see you in the pool on Saturday!
AA: Sounds Great!
To learn more about Goldfish Swim School, they are conveniently located off Haggerty Rd just north of 9 mile, visit their website or call them at 248-596-1914.
I remember as a kid, I loved the USA Network on Mondays.
Home of the Cartoon Express and followed by Monday Night Wrestling hosted by Bobby “The Brain” Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon.
‘The Brain’ had a long career in professional wrestling as a wrestler and promoter of the “Heenan Family”, but he was most well known to my generation for his comedic rants while announcing wrestling on Monday nights for the WWF (later the WWE) and WCW during the ‘Monday Night wars’.
Heenan’s passing was initially announced in a Tweet by announcer Jim Ross and later confirmed by the WWE.