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February 26, 2007
Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #96!

Hey all! In our obligatory annual dig at the February observance, here is Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #96. The sentiments expressed in the comic should be pretty clear, at least concerning panels 1-4, but given the ridiculous number of idiotic comments on last year's "That's So Raven" article (hell, a new one was just added yesterday!) I feel like I have to supply extra clarifying remarks.

First, and let me type this in boldface so that we're clear on this point, I do not mean to suggest that the contributions of the individuals honored during Black History Month should not be recognized. On the contrary, these persons should be recognized alongside others who have achieved similar things, regardless of the color of their skin. For example, Bessie Coleman -- at least insofar as her crowning achievements are concerned -- would more appropriately be mentioned in the company of Amelia Earhart or the Wright brothers than, say, George Washington Carver.

Therefore, with my criticisms of the observance, I do not mean to devalue these individuals' positive contributions to America and the world at large. I do, however, mean to suggest that the very institution of Black History Month itself devalues them by lumping their individual accomplishments together according to the skin color of the honorees, such that more emphasis is in fact placed on the color of their skin than their unique achievements. This effectively amounts to a kind of historical segregation on the basis of the agents' skin color -- or race, if you prefer (I do not; the concept is ultimately meaningless) -- which effectively makes it racist.

I do not think that this is difficult to grasp, and I apologize if my previous comments have been unclear on the matter. Mind you, I do not think that this is the case, but the nature of the comments that people continue to post on the Raven article seems to suggest that at least in some significant way I have failed to effectively articulate and drive my point home. On the other hand, perhaps my contrition regarding this matter is tantamount to apologizing for the stupidity of others. The comment that was posted yesterday is so ridiculous that I have to spotlight it here, with my own analysis to follow:

umm... 2 b honest i dnt think raven or her show iz racist ... i think the thingz in that black history episode waz pretty true... cuz i sure did go out 4 a job and a white man didnt hire me because of my skin color... i think ur just a hater and sum dumb ass that has nutin else 2 do but be a computer geek... r u even black home boi ... if ur not black and ur white or sumthin, u should my figure out UR racist not raven.... if u are black u should b ashamed 2 be puttin down other blacks they way black ppl have it hard in a socity build by white ppl......

bye cracker or if ur black wana b cracker
the portugese / jamaica ghurl NIKKI

Before I write more about that, however, here is another comment that I feel the need to boldface just so that I am not misunderstood on this point: I am not saying -- nor have I ever said -- that racism does not exist or that it does not remain a significant problem in modern day America. That seems to go without saying, given my singling out of certain observances and/or celebrities for criticism specifically because of their racist elements or comments, but I recognize full well that there is a lot of racism perpetuated by the American "majority", spanning all elements of society from the criminal justice system to schools to employment to politics (George Allen, anyone?) and the government. After all, these institutions are run by people, and -- as they apparently say in Avenue Q, which I have absolutely no desire to see -- everyone's a little bit racist. Except they're even more racist when they are unapologetically so and think that their racism is cute and funny when they should find it repugnant and revolting and do their best to rise above it. Honestly, I saw this video today and was appalled, yet the majority of people seem to be reacting to it with a "omfg how cute lol she is saying 'sparkling wiggles' but it sounds like something else!@#$!!" sort of response. I want to shake these people and say, "No, you fucking morons, these parents are clearly -- clearly -- coaching their little girl and using her to air their own racist attitudes in a cutesy disguised manner." How stupid do you have to be to not get that? Believe me, if this were not the case, they would not have recorded it at all, and they certainly would not have posted it on the Internet. Nor would they be telling the girl to say things like, "Get a job, sparkling wiggles!" Honestly, people. Honestly. And how about those MLK Day celebrations at Clemson University in South Carolina, Tarleton State University in Texas, and the University of Connecticut School of Law? This is just a very small selection of recent events that have kind of made me sad concerning the social direction of this country -- and the life that I will be forced to endure should I choose to remain -- but suffice it to say that racism is alive and kicking in the good ol' US of A.

So when "Nikki" writes that she wasn't hired because of the color of her skin, I am not at all saying that this is ludicrous. It's entirely possible. Granted, it's also possible that she wasn't hired because she is clearly none too bright (or is only 12; many establishments require employees to be at least 16 or even 18), but I don't know the particulars of the situation so I cannot say what really happened either way. I can, however, say that her comment is ridiculous. Grammar and poor writing skills aside -- and I had to clear an enormous space to dispense with them, because they are bloody atrocious -- the most salient feature of this comment is that "Nikki" thinks herself equipped to say what is and is not racist when the bulk of her criticisms of me are explicitly dependent upon the color of my skin! Note the form that they essentially take: "If you are A, then B; if you are C, then D," where A and C are "racial" designations and B and D are different opinions regarding my personal flaws. She also claims that -- though again, this directive is dependent upon the color of my skin -- I should be ashamed of criticizing certain people on the basis of the color of their skin (nor is she the only commenter to do so). All of this is pretty much the definition of racism, and her comment is dripping with it.

Hell, even though another commenter, "Barbie", appears to support me here and here, these remarks are also pretty disgustingly racist and clearly miss the point of my articles. So here as well, to clarify, I do not mean to suggest that Black History Month is to be criticized because it constitutes an attempt on the part of so-called "African-Americans" to gain some sort of recompense from the government that enslaved them and denied them equal rights (and often, in practice, continues to do so). I do, however, think that everyone owes it to everyone to not be a moron and to stop judging, grouping, and defining individuals with respect to the color of their skin.

Have I been thorough enough for this entry? I hope so -- but if not, please tell me where I have been unclear so that I can spell my views out for you in even more detail. My e-mail address is linked in every article and at the bottom of every Scary-Crayon blog entry (and, if you miss it in any of these places, click here), and the comments threads are always open. You will note that even when comments thoroughly upset and depress me, I do not remove them.

And finally, should you find yourself confused by the fifth and sixth panels of the comic, I certainly do not mean to say that the history of a fictional alien race is more important than the accomplishments of actual individuals of any background, though I admit that I would rather talk about Daleks than almost anything that one would find in a World History curriculum. Sec's comments here are rooted in a particularly memorable scene from the 36th Doctor Who serial, The Evil of the Daleks, in which a human who is working for the Daleks takes issue with a Dalek for killing another human being. "You've destroyed a human life!" the man shouts. "Don't you understand that?" "That is of no consequence," rasps the Dalek. When the man protests, the Dalek delivers the classic line: "There is only one form of life that matters... DALEK LIFE!" So yeah, that's the explanation for the latter panels.

All for now, then. As always, comments are appreciated -- even more so when they are thought-out and mostly resemble proper English. Ja.

-posted by Wes | 3:08 am | Comments (7)
February 19, 2007
A Crayon Haiku #59!

Nothing terribly substantial today -- again, terribly sorry about that! -- but here's a new installment of A Crayon Haiku to entertain you for about all of three seconds. Hopefully I will have a lengthier and more interesting piece for you soon, to say nothing of the finished WordPress-powered content archives! And in case you're wondering, the pizza really wasn't that bad -- there was a hint of freezer burn, but it was certainly edible.

-posted by Wes | 12:08 am | Comments (2)
February 18, 2007
And another thing

I've also just found that apparently, due to the way that I'm hiding the new index (which is now the WP content page) in order to keep the current layout displayed, the search bar to the right is temporarily not working because the redirect in effect replaces the search results with the main page. I don't have a workaround for that at the moment -- sorry! -- but it should end up being fixed when the more efficient content pages go live. Thanks for bearing with us!

-posted by Wes | 10:21 am | Comments (0)
February 16, 2007
Meanwhile, at the Scary-Crayon HQ…

And here is yet another blog entry to keep you in the loop regarding some of the changes to the site. I noticed a problem with sites being unable to access the site without typing a "www" in front of the URL, which has (hopefully) been fixed now. Progress continues to be made regarding the adding of the content blurbs to the WordPress database -- all of the brief comments about the pieces in the miscellaneous, games, poetry (sans haikus), print media, and writing/fiction categories have been added. The pages presently have different limits for the number of posts that will appear on them, but that's part of my layout testing, as I haven't decided precisely how many articles I want to have linked per page. 25 (or something thereabout) seems like a good number, but then that would mean that folks would have to scroll through multiple pages to see all of the Dusty Plastic HELL pieces, to say nothing of the entire site's archives. I wonder if folks would be willing to go through that.

Oh well, I'll figure something out. As always, your input is encouraged. ๐Ÿ™‚

In other news, I've modified the Links section a bit. Since Huffin' and Puffin' apparently died a sad and lonely death unbeknownst to me, I've removed it from the sidebar -- but in its place, I've included a link to Tresob Yr's Star Wars Action Figure Theater! Lots of cool stuff there, so check it out. I know next to nothing about Star Wars, but I'm particularly fond of the bootleg toy reviews. I've also updated the link button to Pop Arena. Good times, yes.

Speaking of link buttons, I haven't added these to the sidebar yet -- I'm waiting until I finish a couple more before I do that -- but here's a look at some of the new images I've created for Scary-Crayon:

Suuuupa Mutation!

Suuuupa Mutation!

Suuuupa Mutation!

Suuuupa Mutation!

SAINT Mutation!

Naturally, they'll display smaller on the page -- and on your page, should you choose to download them to your site and use them -- but I've enlarged them here so you can get a better look at them. And yes, that is a modified Wolverine sprite. ๐Ÿ˜‰

All for now, then -- new content soon!

-posted by Wes | 9:12 pm | Comments (0)
February 15, 2007
Behind-the-scenes progress (!)

As I noted yesterday, we're going through some behind-the-scenes changes regarding the Scary-Crayon content pages -- and during the last few hours, you might have noticed some serious wonkiness with the blog. For one, the URL has changed (!!!), so you should update your bookmarks and links and whatnot (assuming that you're linking to the blog instead of the main page) to http://www.scary-crayon.com/features/blog/. Even if you don't, though, I should have a redirect in effect such that going to the old blog url (sans the 'features' directory) brings you to the new page. If you notice problems with that, you know what to do.

That's about the only change that should be entirely noticeable, and the reason for it is that whereas before you were viewing the blog index -- which was located in the 'blog' directory -- now you're viewing the category page for the blog, as the index is located in the site's root directory and now displays the front page content. I've still got the site's base URL set up to default to the current main page for the time being, which has always been located at main.html/php. But if you want a look at the index as it will be, here you go. Like I said, it'll be pretty much the same as the current layout with a few minor differences (I plan on having separate categories for both the games and writing-related articles), but it should make things slightly more organized and streamlined (or not) from an administrative standpoint. We will see...

At any rate, I should have some actual content for you before all of this is said and done. ๐Ÿ™‚

-posted by Wes | 4:38 pm | Comments (0)
February 14, 2007
Happy Valentine’s Day! And layout stuff…

Happy Valentine's Day, minna-san! Alas, I don't have a new article or anything for you today, but I did want to let you know that I have been fooling around with the site a whole bunch today, even if my work ultimately comes to naught. See, for ages (ages!) I've been doing the content pages manually, which is to say that I wrote the blurbs, pasted them onto the content pages in the appropriate spaces, and trimmed the remaining post in order to maintain a set number of article links on the main page -- or not, in the case of the category pages. While I do like this because it lets me browse the site in full on my hard drive and isn't dependent upon a database or other program outside of Notepad (++), it does prevent me from easily limiting the number of article links to a page. For instance, the Dusty Plastic HELL page is reaaaally long now -- and while I could chop it up into a few pages, maintaining a set post limit on each page would basically require me to shift entries on each page each update (as opposed to just removing them). So I'm thinking that I'm going to start using the WordPress blog to handle all of this as well.

Of course, none of this will be happening in the immediate future, as it'll take me quite a while to manually add every single article blurb I've ever written to the database, but if you notice anything wonky about the blog in the meantime it likely has something to do with that. (Still, please let me know if you find anything wonky! I need to know about 'em so I can try to fix 'em. :)) Frex, when adding some older articles to the WP database here, I noted that the monthly archives list to the right was including the months that I posted those articles in the list, even though I've got it set up so these posts will not display on any of the blog's pages. As a result, there were several empty months in the list, as quite a few of the features and articles that I've written predate the creation of the SC blog and even the Side Talk block that the older layouts featured. To fix that, I've restricted the list to showing only the past 18 months, but that prevents you from easily selecting a month before that period and reading the posts there. However, if there's a particular older post that you kinda think you remember, you should be able to access it via the search bar, although it'll be way, way back at the end. I know, you're probably not all that miffed -- I don't imagine many people would be interested in reading the Side Talk blurbs from 2004 and early 2005 anyway! -- but it bears mentioning, I guess.

Anyway, here are previews of how the Main and Print Reviews pages are more/less going to look. Natch, there are very few aesthetic differences between them and the current pages, as I'm not really changing the layout so much as trying to replicate it using WordPress. Each of the individual blurbs was entered as a post, much like the one that you are reading right now, albeit much shorter and posted to a different category that is ruled by a modified template. So far, so good, yes? I've only added the Print Reviews articles and several more recent pieces from other categories for test purposes, but eventually it should all be set up so that the page looks... well, exactly the same, except with a limit of 25 or 36 or however many feature blurbs I decide should appear on the category pages. Then there will be a link to the next page or something somewhere. I'm not sure how it'll work out -- or if it'll work out, but fingers crossed. ๐Ÿ™‚

And hang in there -- I'll have new content ready for you soon enough! It's been too long since we've seen Kain and Wild Boar Alien, yes? ๐Ÿ˜‰

-posted by Wes | 5:23 pm | Comments (0)
February 5, 2007
The SF2 Crossovers That Time Forgot!

It's time for another trip to that wacky world of old school homebrew Street Fighter II titles! In this latest piece, we take a look at SFNinja: Champion Edition and SFRanma, two SFIBM mods that respectively pit the World Warriors against a multitude of palette-swapped ninjas and the cast of Ranma ½. The author of those games, Maximoff, is even on hand to share his insights into the creative process -- as well as tell us about the exciting new fighting games that he's been working on as of late! Due to the apparent incompatibilities with my system and the beta versions, I can't vouch for them just yet, but the YouTube previews look pretty neat. "Maneater" is such an appropriate song for Mileena, too. :mrgreen:

Sound test, where have you been?

Also, when I was recording Ryoga's "hot steak" sound effect, I noticed that Ranma ½ Hard Battle for the SNES had a sound test in its options menu. This in and of itself isn't particularly surprising -- a lot of games had these back in the day -- but seeing as how I can't recall having seen one in ages, I'm curious to know if games still have these. Am I just overlooking them, or have programmers decided that players are no longer interested in listening to isolated sound effects? I suppose this feature could've been replaced by hidden jukeboxes and FMV galleries.

Also, while working on this article, I had occasion to test out some of the additional features of WinSCP -- and I've gotta say, this FTP program is bloody awesome. Considering that it's got the ability to synchronize local and remote browsing and compare directories to locate file changes (which is great because I have SC mirrored on my HD, but of course my local copy is always the most recent version), I'm thoroughly impressed. The added security is great too, of course.

All for now, then -- thanks for reading, minna-san! And thanks again to Maximoff for his contributions to today's retro gaming excursion. ๐Ÿ™‚

-posted by Wes | 7:05 pm | Comments (7)
January 25, 2007
Happy three-year anniversary, Scary-Crayon!

It's hard to believe, but as of today Scary-Crayon is three years old. I was planning to say a lot more about the site and how it's progressed since 2004, but I guess I'll let these unique visitor graphs speak for me. At any rate, you can see that in 2004 the site received a comparatively humble 129,635 unique visits, 27,416 of which took place in June due to an incredible surge in viewings of the Stupid Internet Ads article. This figure increased significantly in 2005, with SC receiving 213,102 unique visits, and 2006 saw further visitor growth with 380,161. And now, in the first month of 2007, the site is off to a fairly modest start with 26,672 unique visitors. Even if one takes into account the likely fact that over 1,000 of those visits are mine (I assume that the unique visits are tallied per day, and I check the site roughly once a day to make sure that things are up and running smoothly) and removes another several thousand because of people I have personally referred to the site -- and discounts the hits that show up from image theft and whatnot -- I'd estimate that over 700,000 unique visitors have somehow found their way to Scary-Crayon in its three years without any prompting from yours truly. And I know that's extremely low in terms of overall website rankings, but I still think it's sort of neat that so many people have turned out to look at something that I do pretty much by myself and for no other reason than to share things that amuse and entertain me with the masses.

To celebrate -- though admittedly this celebration pales in comparison to our first-year blowout ๐Ÿ˜ -- we've got four new pieces for you. First, because the site began with them, here's a new Crayon Haiku that takes a look at how things have changed in my small town. Back in 2004, the local mall was a relatively decent place. It wasn't a mall that you'd come for miles to visit, but it had a KB Toys, a Spencer Gifts, a couple of bookstores, a music store, and even a crappy arcade. In other words, it didn't suck. But now those stores are gone, replaced by empty space or tacky ghetto clothing stores with owners in turbans who shadily encourage you to talk to them if you see anything you like so they can cut you a deal. Not that I'd buy anything out of these places anyway -- unless I were planning to review it in a "who the fuck would wear this crap" capacity before cutting to pics of celebrities in similar attire -- but I find it incredibly frustrating that nothing in them has prices. This isn't the Sunday flea market or a Baghdad bazaar, people -- it's a retail store and I don't want to have to haggle before making purchases. I will say that the South Asian music they generally play in these establishments is pretty catchy, though. If they had low prices clearly displayed on them and I could read Arabic, I might also consider picking up a music CD or two.

Meet Korall Krabba!

Okay, so in addition to that, we've got two new Hot Flash comics -- DPH:HF #94 and DPH:HF #95. #94 is based on actual events -- I didn't actually approach this girl, mind you, but I happened to see her while at IKEA the other week and was bloody stunned because here I was wearing several shirts in addition to my trench coat lining and she's walking around with her fleshy thighs bare for all the world to see and for Jack Frost to caress. The plushie around my neck in the comic also came home with me that night, as I found him to be utterly irresistible. Isn't he cute? Somehow the yellow seems brighter in person. Also, he needs a name -- I don't like Korall Krabba much. Any suggestions?

And then there's DPH:HF #95, which utilizes some of the new techniques from DPH:HF #93. I decided that I didn't mind doing the shadows so much after all -- and that it doesn't matter if I don't get them perfect, because clearly the figures aren't standing in the background anyway -- so I went ahead and put them in this comic as well. Megatron will likely show up in more comics, too, as I find him to be utterly hilarious for a number of reasons. Heck, the profile on the back of his card even explicitly notes that, upon being "mutated" into his current beast form by exposure to the Jungle Planet, he was initially frustrated. When one's hand is replaced by a snapping Tyrannosaur head, it's not hard to see why! ๐Ÿ˜†

And finally, there's The Great Unveiling, which includes my first look at the Turtle Saint action figure as well as the first appearance of several related Super Turtle-type toys on the site. I say way more about that in the actual article, though, so there's no need to go into that here. But there's also a drawing that I link in the article to which I wanted to call special attention -- this art trade rendering of the Crayon Monster Critter by DeviantArtist Odd13. I don't think she reads the site or had any idea that its anniversary was coming up (aside from my mention of it, anyway), so her timing with this was totally accidental, but SC is pleased that this rendition of its mascot was posted so close to its third birthday. In addition to the new renaming of the creature -- Odd referred to it as a "critter" and I think the word sounds so much better than "monster" when prefaced by "crayon", don't you? -- I think that in all future renditions of it that depict it below the waist (which has only been done once before, by old reader Josh in the first-year anniversary article), the critter will now sport a tail. I may even end up coloring and marking the tail to look like a crayon itself. ๐Ÿ™‚

And on that note, I'll end this post and let you get to reading these articles as Scary-Crayon officially begins its fourth year online! Again, thanks for visiting, lending your support and kind words, etc. -- and we hope to see more of you in 2007. Perhaps this year there will even be contests! :mrgreen:

-posted by Wes | 5:42 pm | Comments (11)
January 20, 2007
The first Hot Flash/Haiku combo of 2007!

I was just thinking that the title of this post isn't really saying all that much, since we'll likely be having first somethings of 2007 all the way through December (barring something unfortunate happening to me or the lamentable closing of Scary-Crayon, anyway), but today we've got a double-whammy for you with Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #93 and A Crayon Haiku #57. And both of them feature TURTLE POWER!

The haiku is a relatively simple affair -- I just had the idea while taking screencaps of the backgrounds in TMNT IV: Turtles in Time for potential use in this and subsequent Hot Flashes -- but the comic itself was a pretty time-consuming affair. I know it probably doesn't look it, but I spent so much time extracting the figures and selecting backgrounds and fooling with those stupid shadows (note to self: leave shadows out of future comics) that I considered making this an official Dusty Plastic HELL issue. I think I'm going to set a tentative minimum of seven panels for those, though. Anyway, the issue highlighted in the comic -- action figures not set to scale -- is actually one that kind of bothers me. (Not in the way that social issues, politics, etc., bother me, but still.) I know that most TMNT fans are pretty pleased with the new movie figures, but I'm personally not all that keen on them. In addition to featuring crappy paint jobs and multiple blemishes -- I sorted through a ton of figures before finally deciding on this Raph -- the 6" figures are too tall to really look right next to any of the other TMNT characters from the old or new series.

This latest offense has only furthered my belief that there should be some kind of scale standard among action figures that determines how tall the figure will be based on the fictional character's height, thereby ensuring that interactions between the characters will be more/less visually accurate on the plastic plane. It'd be neat if all action figure companies adhered to the scale guidelines -- it's not cool when the Turtles dwarf Batman -- but companies should at least be consistent within their own licenses. Just once it would be neat to have a Wolverine figure that isn't capable of looking Venom in the eye without having to crane his neck a bit.

Not sure I'll have the next segment of Krang's Big Adventure ready for our three-year anniversary on the 25th, but I should at least have a new TMNT-related Hot Flash to post. Hopefully I'll have another article or two for you as well. Anyway, see you then, minna-san! :mrgreen:

-posted by Wes | 7:18 pm | Comments (2)
January 15, 2007
Triple-Team-Up: The Best and Worst of 2006!

Best and worst type articles are admittedly pretty common, but we've never done one here at Scary-Crayon before now -- so I'm especially glad that my pals Greg of Pop Arena and Molly of Alligator Juice were willing to play along and participate in this triple-team-up feature. I'm really pleased with how diverse the lists turned out, too. Greg's article draws upon his experiences as a Target employee, Molly's selections are influenced by her status as a card-carrying televisiophile, and our own contribution is pretty long-winded and all over the place... just like much of the site. ๐Ÿ˜›

I've also tried to practice some of my new image editing techniques in this one, so hopefully you'll be seeing more of the same in 2007. I'm particularly pleased with the way the Dalek came out -- the pic in the article is a photo of the actual bath and shower gel container. (I used an orange background to make it easier to isolate the dome lights and the discs on the eyestalk; you can sort of see the color reflected on the Dalek's base.) You might be able to get a better deal on eBay (I did), but you can also order your own Dalek bath and shower gel at Who North America. Personally -- although it would hurt me to drop the $50; you can kinda tell how frugal/cheap I am from reading this article -- I'm now leaning towards purchasing this Dalek. This one is also pretty neat, though. And of course there are the micro Daleks. I sure like Daleks. :mrgreen:

All for now, then -- thanks for reading, and do check out Molly and Greg's pieces as well. Again, we wish you all the best in 2007... whatever you are. That's a Count Duckula reference, btw.

P.S. Scary-Crayon's three-year anniversary is just ten days away! I may not have anything fantastic to post on it, but still. Mark your calendars! Donate generous sums of money! Or just keep reading and making the occasional comment that doesn't make my head hurt. No matter which avenue you choose, your support will be greatly appreciated. ๐Ÿ™‚

-posted by Wes | 6:30 pm | Comments (11)
January 10, 2007
Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #92!

Okay, as noted in the blurb on the content pages, Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #92 is more of a test slash intermission -- just a quick one-panel comic I've posted mostly for feedback purposes. Remember Krang's apparently forgotten quest to acquire a body? Well, I never really forgot about it -- and since then I've been trying to think of the best way to resume the story. You might remember the test run I ran a while back in which I planned to do a return to the text-based dialogue and descriptions that accompanied the old files, but my latest innovation regarding the creation of the speech bubbles (lookit, curvy arrow thingies!!!!) and some experimenting with blue screen effects has me all itching and eager to try this updated approach in an ALL NEW Dusty Plastic HELL adventure.

Also, in addition to letting me know what you think of these changes, I'm curious to hear how you respond to the shadows on the overlapping speech bubbles. Yeah, they're left-to-right and generally around the same height anyway, but how would you read them if the positions were changed? Would you still read from left to right, or would you start from the bubble most obviously on top?

Fun times ahead, folks.

-posted by Wes | 7:28 pm | Comments (4)
January 5, 2007
You would not believe…

...how bloody long I spent photographing crayons and fooling with potential background images only to eventually decide upon a new background for 2007 (!!!) that looks more/less the same as the old one. It really is mind-boggling. In other news, the SC blog and Wesoteric are now running WordPress 2.06. Hurrah.

That's pretty much all for this short post, then, but I just wanted to give a couple of shout-outs to Shin-Goji and the Twisted Kaiju Theater crew and Tresob Yr of the Star Wars Action Figure Theater (aka SWAFT). I'd meant to do the former back when I reviewed the Transformatrix Optimus Prime since the inclusion of Bootleg Godzilla in the piece put them in mind, but then I was so burnt out by the time that I finished writing it that I guess I forgot. So yeah, go visit TKT for more kaiju comic-type goodness. And Tresob Yr has Star Wars action figure comics as well as toy reviews, including a review of the Transformatrix Prime! He's even got photos of the overweight Prime and an animated gif that depicts the transformation process, so checking out the article will definitely help to supplement your knowledge of Bootleg Prime. Don't laugh; someday Saint Peter may quiz you on this very information.

Ja ne, minna-san.

-posted by Wes | 11:05 pm | Comments (1)
January 4, 2007
A Crayon Haiku #56!

Seeing as how the site began with haikus, it seems fitting that A Crayon Haiku #56 should be the first offering of the new year. We're not done with 2006 yet, though, as we've got a best/worst of 2006 type article scheduled for the next update! Other articles that I may or may not get to in the near future: dollar store candy that I bought in 2006 but still have not reviewed, dollar store toys that I bought in 2006 but still have not reviewed, and dollar store toys that I bought yesterday that are likely the most exciting dollar store toy finds I have encountered since the late 1980s. STAY TUNED. :mrgreen:

-posted by Wes | 10:27 am | Comments (1)
December 31, 2006
Merry Christmas, Amelia Bedelia!

LOOKIT: THE LAST ARTICLE OF 2006! Or the first article of 2007, depending upon when you read this and when I get the content pages uploaded, since there's a pretty good chance that that won't happen until after the big 12:00 on the EC of the USA. I guess it's already 2007 in the UK. Does it really matter? HAPPY NEW YEAR, MINNA-SAN! :mrgreen:

Anyway, to ring in the new year and say goodbye to 2006 and the winter holiday season, we have a summary review and commentary of Merry Christmas, Amelia Bedelia, a children's book featuring a sexy and extremely literal-minded maid. Something tells me that this character is in the wrong country -- I wonder what would have happened if she'd ended up working in Japan instead of America. I doubt that a book chronicling those adventures would be appropriate for children! ๐Ÿ˜

Best wishes for 2007, everyone.

-posted by Wes | 11:55 pm | Comments (10)
December 25, 2006
Transformatrix: Bootleg Optimus Prime!

Cybertron Prime, meet Transformatrix Prime!

Okay, I'm barely squeezing this one through for the second Christmas Day update, but here it is: a review of a dollar store Transformatrix action figure, affectionately known to me as Bootleg Optimus Prime. As noted, despite the passing of the holiday, I do still have legitimate Christmas reviews to finish -- so expect to see those in the upcoming days! If all goes well, I should have another one for you tomorrow. ๐Ÿ™‚

That said, Scary-Crayon and I hope that you enjoy the article -- and that you had a merry Christmas (or equivalent winter holiday)! :mrgreen:

-posted by Wes | 11:36 pm | Comments (6)
MERRY FREAKIN’ CHRISTMAS, KIDS!

And here's one of your holiday presents -- the thirteenth and fourteenth (and FINAL) parts of The Absolute Strangest Christmas Story Ever Told! That's not all you get, though -- I'm planning to update the site with at least one more article before the day is through. And there are definitely two Christmas pieces I want to get up (one of which will probably not make it for tomorrow's update), so there will definitely be more festive stuff before the year is over! I mean, people don't take down their trees until January 1st, right? Christmas articles are still fair game, then. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Haaaaaaaappy holidays, minna-san!

Also, in case you did not notice, I have upgraded the blog to WordPress v2.05. Not that you should notice, though, because nothing should have changed! If you see something that's broken, however, do bring it to my attention. Thanks. ๐Ÿ™‚

-posted by Wes | 6:34 am | Comments (1)
December 19, 2006
Aaaand we’re almost there…!

And now it's time for the next three segments in The Absolute Strangest Christmas Story Ever Told: TEN, ELEVEN, and TWELVE! Only two more left to go, people... then the fiction posted on the site will be decidedly less strange and random. Hopefully it won't be a letdown! ๐Ÿ™‚

We've also got Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #91 for you -- I was going to illustrate this in my usual goofy Sharpie marker style, but then I got lazy and didn't feel like doing any scanning so I figured I'd try some quick photomanipulation similar to what I've been doing with the "artwork" that has accompanied the story segments. Kinda makes me wish they sold Rachel Ray dolls -- I'd totally dye one's hair green and bleach its skin, though I'm not exactly sure how that latter part would work. I used to think she was sort of hot, but now she just scares me. And she's freaking everywhere! Moderation, Rachel Ray is not thy name. ๐Ÿ˜

P.S. If anyone from the Food Network or whatnot happens to read this article, a cooking/talk show hosted by ME would totally be more interesting than Double-R's stuff. Seriously, look at the Foodstuffs articles! I'd like to see Rachel Ray top The Legendary Glazed Toroid Fishstick Sandwich. ๐Ÿ˜›

-posted by Wes | 3:41 am | Comments (6)
December 11, 2006
A barrage of strangeness for j00!

Again, I really do apologize for the lack of updates -- here's my attempt to sort of compensate. Admittedly, there's not too much substantial content here outside of the novel segments, but, um... yeah, I tried. We've got A Crayon Haiku #54 (which I've had around for a while; dunno why I haven't posted it yet) and a frustrating #55; we've got Dusty Plastic HELL: Hot Flash #90 (only ten more to go before the big 1-0-0!); and, perhaps most importantly, we've got THREE new segments of The Absolute Strangest Christmas Story Ever Told, as Parts Seven, Eight, and Nine (spelled out for improved clickability!) are now online. 'Cause I told you, this thing is going to be up in full by December 25. 2006. Not 2007. There's more holiday stuff on the way, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

The Donatello Christmas Tradition continues!

Speaking of holiday stuff, the Donatello Christmas Tradition continues this year with FOUR (4!) Dons for the kiddies -- one of whom is TMNT: Fast Forward's new Dark Don. Okay, so he's not technically Donatello, but he's got his DNA and technical knowhow and stuff so I am counting him. He is definitely not mellow, though. Especially not for a turtle.

Aaand thanks to Jax for the Jagun Fighters and tapioca balls (yeah...!) pictured in the latest Hot Flash. The uncertainty with respect to their names on the content pages is because while I was able to locate a Jagun Fighter that more/less matched the appearance of the one on the left on Bandai's Jagun Fighters page -- Yamaru -- I haven't a clue who the other one is. I called him Leech because he reminds me of Hordak's old henchman, who can be seen in the classic (or maybe just really old) SC feature entitled A Random Lunch #1. We've sure come a long way, eh?

That said, here's to Scary-Crayon's upcoming three-year anniversary in 2007! And here's to a happy holiday season for all. :mrgreen:

-posted by Wes | 6:25 pm | Comments (5)
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