Character Crush – Tank Girl

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-by Bevianna Bones

Growing up, I had lots of character crushes, who at the time I thought was just me wanting to be like them, and there was none greater than that of Tank Girl. Rebellious, punk, independent, smartass, sarcastic, anarchist, badass, hot girl who played with tanks and guns, and drank beer…what’s not to like. She sounds an awful lot like me.  Me in my teenage years especially.

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I would however worn a dog collar instead of a candy necklace, but let’s not nitpick the details

Maybe that’s why the usual idolization I had for my character crushes turned into that funny tingling feeling and moist loins I couldn’t quite understand when I saw Lori Petty playing her on the big screen. Damn she was hot. And did a great job portraying her, for she too, pretty much embodied the Tank Girl spirit.

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Tanks, guns, beer, and legs a mile long..oh my

It was actually a terrible movie, but I kept watching it over and over again. I just couldn’t get enough of her.  You can ask my wifemate what women in uniform packing heat can do for me.  Maybe it also had a bit to do with an underlying sapphic tone between her and her aircraft fixin’ pilot pal.

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I’m betting that she calls her, Sir…

It probably helps the little crush along that Lori Petty actually is a legit lez. Imagine my excitement, nearly twenty years later, to hear that she was going to be at comic con. I was so excited to have her autograph my Tank Girl DVD.  Sadly, there are things that you wish you could unsee; her in the flesh, after a not so kind twenty years, was one of them.  But my heart takes solice in knowing that digital images never fade, and I’ll always have my Tank Girl of the nineties.

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-BB

Berenstain Bears Meet Big Paw

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-by Joshie Jaxon

We open on the home of our titular bears. They’re all standing in the kitchen as Mama is scrying for demons. Alright, she’s not. What she’s actually doing is drizzling a honeycomb over a pan, and trying to read the future. She blows some flour in the pan, and we see the shape of a giant paw. A big paw, if you will. Mama says it’s the legend.
What legend? I am so glad you asked. The Thanksgiving legend states that if the bears become greedy, and unkind to the needy, and don’t show appreciation for nature’s great bounty, that monster of monsters Big Paw will come, and gobble up Bear Country, county by county. How’s that for a legend? Suck it, Linus and the Great Pumpkin.

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As we pan through a dark swamp, we see a welcome sign, with a bird on it. He sees something off camera and freaks out. A giant arm reaches in, grabs the sign, and takes a bite out of it before putting it back. The bird lands back on the sign, and looks down to see a giant paw print. A Big Paw, print if you will. It’s a running gag. Get used to it. The bird calls out, “Big Paw” several times, and heads to town to warn the villagers.

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Cut to Papa on the porch. He takes a step and falls down the stairs. Mama and the cubs look down, as Papa shouts that he told their mother to fix that stair. Life’s not easy for Papa Bear. Geez, first she has to do her divining for the family, now she’s expected to be the handyman too? Careful, Papa. She may realize she can do better. Leaving Mama to get her lazy ass to work, Papa takes the cubs to go check on their crops. As they do, Papa explains how much he loves all holidays. Arbor Day in particular, cause he gets the best wood.

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We reach the gardening area of town, and the voiceover repeats the legend of Big Paw. As it mentions the part about bears being greedy, we notice all the keep out/hands off signs around the various orchards and such. There’s a lone apple in the walkway, and when Sister goes to pick it up, a bear uses a net to snatch it from her, and holds up a sign that reads, this means you. I’m starting to get the feeling that these bears are just begging for Big Paw to come teach them a lesson about appreciation for their fellow man, er, bear.

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Papa gets to Papa’s Private Pumpkin Patch, and as any fan of Gay Geek Gab knows, we love us some alliteration. Anyhow, Papa has three separate padlocks on it. Trying to corner the market on pumpkins there? Elsewhere, the squawking bird from the intro tells a turtle that he saw Big Paw. The turtle tells a hedgehog, who tells a gator, and they all start to flee. Gossip, like a certain pumpkin picking Papa, gets around fast. Papa talks to the kids about snacks, and says his absolute favorite is mixed nuts. Brother and Sister decide they’re gonna go get some for their doting father. Meanwhile, Papa heads back to town with several pumpkins.

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Back at bear manor, bitch bear, I mean, Mama, is busy doing her chores. As she does, she sings about being thankful. Her goldfish is mopping it’s tank, including wringing it out. Cute, but not exactly practical. The parakeet uses it’s tail to dust it’s own cage. How did Mama not have time to fix that damn stair? “We’re thankful which is why we stress, thankfulness.” Not a bad lesson, Mama. There’s commotion outside. The hedgehog that warned the gators collides with Papa and his peck of pumpkins. They all tumble to town. The hedgehog tells Papa about Big Paw being in the nearby Sinister Bog, and the townsfolk begin to panic. Guess where the cubs went to go get Papa’s nuts? That’s right, Mama’s purse. Kidding, they went to Sinister Bog.

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The citizens are all freaking out about Big Paw. Papa says it’s time to militarize. In the bog, Brother comments how Papa will love these. Sister says, yeah, these nuts are really delicious. Start ’em young. I’m terrible. The ground starts to shake, and we see Big Paw stomping through the bog singing to no one in particular. You can have your Sasquatch, your abominable snow man. His name is Big Paw. He supersedes them all. You know what they say about bears with big paws. All his stomping causes nuts to rain down. It is a bear community after all. Sorry, had to. The cubs fall out of the tree they were in, and Big Paw catches them. They wave a goodbye at him, and flee.

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In the village square, all the bears are prepping for war. They went from afraid of the enemy, to let’s strike first. This is 20 years before Dubya took office. Mama tells them to calm their tits. After all, a stranger is just someone that you don’t already know. Um, maybe stranger danger wasn’t an issue in 1980. Maybe there are no cub-nappings in Bear Country. Whatever the case may be, Mama leads a musical number about getting to know strangers and giving them a chance. During the number, we hear loud roars coming from the mountains. Mama still gets her point across. She’s that good.

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Papa says that she may be right, and offers to head up the mountain to check things out. Despite being brave and strong, the cubs come along to force him, I mean help him, up the mountain. Cut to Big Paw sitting by a fire, and still singing to himself. He lets out a mighty yawn, but being on Echoing Ledge, it sounds more like a roar. Thanks to the fire, he’s casting a massive shadow, and that’s what Papa sees when he goes to look. Papa declares that they have to get him, before he gets them, and rolls down the mountain to rally the troops; ignoring the cubs trying to get him to listen.

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Papa whips the town into a frenzy. They prepare skunk bombs, which are skunks on watermelons. Hey, melons work in Plants vs Zombies so why not? There’s also beehive grenades, pitchforks, tennis rackets, mops, the works. Big Paw hears the commotion coming up the mountain, and feels like they came for him. He doesn’t remember what they said, but he just knows they came for him at some point.

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To prepare for the mob, Big Paw stacks up a pile of boulders, and is gonna go bear bowling. That’ll show them. The bears continue to charge, and Big Paw starts pushing the boulders to the edge. With neither side giving an inch, it isn’t until Sister shouted from the ledge, that Papa of the year left them on, that they realized that innocent people can get hurt. There was no one to save the cubs, except for the stranger. Let’s entrust our kids to the guy we had gathered to lynch. But, being the nice, misunderstood, creature that he is, Big Paw saves the cubs for the second time.

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Having realized what horrible monsters they were being, the villagers and Papa speak about how he not only saved the cubs, he saved the mob from themselves. We close on Big Paw and the bear family having Thanksgiving dinner together. The hedgehog chatters in Big Paw’s ear. He reaches down and puts his big thing of nuts on the table, and everyone starts reaching for them, and putting them in their mouths. Goodnight everybody!

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-JJ

True Survivor-David Hasslehoff

-by Bevianna Bones

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This may be a modern music video, but it has so much 80s awesomeness that I have to share my feelings on it. There is so much epicness packed into 4 insanely action packed minutes, the result is astounding awe after first watching, and a resounding voice in your head asking again and again, “Is this real?”, because your brain is overloaded with its magnificence. 

The music vid and song were made to promote a kickstater funded movie called Kung Fury; featuring 80s cop drama, kung fu, time travel, dinosaurs, barbarians, lasers, Lamborghinis, mullets and, yes, even a Power Glove.

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You’re not just playing with power, you’re playing with Nintendo power…

Who else better could they get to make this song/vid of epic 80s proportions other than the one and only Knight Rider. 

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I’m not going to give you a play by play of what happens during the course of this video. Rather, I just want to highlight some of the most bodacious parts.  Really though, the entire thing is, simply put, a-fuckin-mazing. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s something that you need to do immediately. Stop everything you are doing and watch this video. Finish reading this post of course, but then, watch this video. I will include a link at the end.

Some of my most favorite parts, including the aforementioned Hoff and Power Glove…

1. The Hoff and the Lamborghini

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2. The Barbarian woman and the evil demon dog.

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3. Hitler …aka Kung Furhuer

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4. Dinosaurs

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5. Barbarians with Laser Guns

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6.  Electric Keytar!!! Eat your heart out Sammy Kurr!

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Ok, to explain that reference for those who aren’t as fluent in useless information as I am…Sammy Kurr is the fictional rock star who dies in a hotel fire and comes back as a demon, through speakers, through playing his records backwards, who’s ghastly demon encarnation shows up at his high school alma maters dance, which just so happens to be on All Hallows Eve, to wreak havoc and vengeance on all those who bullied him. He achieves this through zapping the dance goers in the gymnasium with lightning bolts from his electric guitar. See the correlation now? Isn’t it a funny reference now that you understand the back story?

7. The Hoff and his awesome faces

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8. The Hoff and his sexyhoff poses

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9. Mash it all up in one epically amazingly awesome shot

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I am absolutely dying to see this movie completed. I am however, afraid that it’s going to be so awesome that it might rip a hole in the fabric of time and the universe might just collapse on itself as a result of unleashing it on the viewing public. It is a chance I’m willing to take. Please, please let me see Kung Fury.

Check out the link below to enjoy

-BB

My Little Pony – The End of Flutter Valley, Part 1

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Joshie Jaxon

Alright, before I even get into this piece of childhood nostalgia, as an adult, I want to point out that the ponies premier adventure is ten, that’s right, ten parts long. Thank Cher that they’re only ten minutes apiece. I don’t know if I could take 200 minutes of inaugural pony action. It’s nothing like the donkey show I saw in Tiaju- never mind.

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After the opening credits with “My little pony. My little pony”, we see a winged pony playing in what I presume is giant dandelions. He/she/it scares Baby Cuddles. Dear Oprah is it gonna be this cute the whole time? Cuddles crashes into a mini dragon that sounds like Buster Bunny. Since they haven’t said his name, I’m gonna call him Buster Dragon, which makes him sound like a Yugioh card. What’s that? I’m stalling to avoid the cuteness? You don’t know me.

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The ponies, and Buster Dragon, are heading for Flutter Valley; The most beautiful place in all of Pony Land. Little do they know they are being watched from a cauldron. Hydia, who sounds like Mom from Futurama, must be related to Mumm-Ra, since they use the same voyeuristic viewing methods. For my own amusement I shall call her Momm-Ra. She wants to ruin the ponies celebration. She has her daughter-minions go to take care of them. They ask how, and she screams, “Any button! They all retaliate!”. Ok, she actually reminds them they’re witches, and says that’s how.

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The witches, who seem very backwoods redneck, head out to stop the ponies. Beulah May and Ruby Sue, not their real names. This show isn’t big on naming people so far, so I have to. One says to grab them. The other says there are too many to grab. They need a plan. Beulah May falls into some mud, eats some worms, and uses magic to turn some flowers into a lasso. Wonder Woman she ain’t.

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A pony with jewel shaped eyes says she hopes they haven’t missed the celebration. Uh, if you’re invited guests, I’m sure they won’t start the party without ya. The backwoods witches from the volcano of gloom start capturing ponies. The ponies tell Buster Dragon to go for help. He gets caught too. Oh no! Momm-Ra watches from cauldron cam, and tells her rats how proud she is of her girls. She’s so proud!

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Flutter Valley. We see several ponies with butterfly style wings flying around. They wonder why the ponies are late. I hope nothing happened. What could happen? It’s a beautiful day, the sun is shining, and life is wonderful! Actual dialogue. Oh sweet Midler help me though this. We’re only half done. The Flutter Ponies see that the other ponies were captured. They switch to flutter power, and release cotton spores or something, making the witches sneeze, and allowing the ponies to get away. Momm-Ra will not be pleased.

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Queen Flutter Pony sits beneath a jewel, pontificating about how wonderful and beautiful the sun is. Ruby Sue and Beulah May are gonna try again. QFP declares this day to be Sun Tuesday. Sun-Day would have made more sense. Oh well. As we pan out on the ritualistic ruins they’re in, the jewel glows, and all the ponies sing about how great the sun is. Clearly these ponies have never been in Phoenix during August. The sun’s not so great when you’re Irish. Am I bitter? Absolutely. Zoidberg chic isn’t just an oxymoron, it’s implausible.

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The bumbling witches decide to try something simple this time. Cause, you know, lassoes are complicated. Oh! Let’s try a landslide! Really, ladies? Alright. There’s no way this can go wrong. As the witches try to get their land sliding on this light flow day, the Bushwoolies offer some bush melons to QFP. Does “bush melon” sound dirty to anyone else? No? Moving on. The pony holding the chocolate cake looked baked. Maybe she’s Hash Pony.

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The ponies hear rumbling as the landslide starts. QFP says “run, my little ponies. Fly away my little flutter ponies. Hide, Bushwoolies, hide!”. Thanks, but if rocks are falling, I will figure out that I need to escape without being told. Thanks, your majesty. I can see why you’re queen. I was gonna pose the question whose little ponies they all were, but that answered that. Buster dragon questions what they can do to stop the sun stone from falling. Maybe securing it rather than perching it precariously would be a good start. Credits.

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What? Credits? They can’t end on a hoof-biting cliffhanger like that. I can’t sleep not knowing, oh who am I kidding. Thank the almighty Judy that it’s over. There was too much cuteness crammed into those ten minutes. I need to watch something rugged and manly after that. I know! He-Man and the Masters of the Universe! Stop laughing!

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-JJ

Quiz and Dragons

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by Bevianna Bones

Ok, so I got distracted from writing this the last time I was going to post it, but now it’s here for real real.  Quiz and Dragons. An arcade game from Capcom circa 1992. Bevianna, you say, with snark, that the 90s were not the 80s to which I reply to you, the early 90s might have still been the 80s since the early 90s hadn’t really stepped into the dream of the 90s yet, and possessed a very 80s flair to it. It works this way with all decades really. The early 80s still have that late 70s feel, the early millennia was still shaking off pieces of the late 90s, and so on and so forth. So in any event, I declare early 90s as on the official table for the sake of retro reviews. Wanna feel old? It was 25 years ago. Some of you readers probably weren’t even born. And what else is more retro than an  arcade game and the joy of playing one.?

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What is an arcade? Oh please tell me you jest, but just to clarify for those who joined the world after the mid 90s, an arcade was just about the happiest place on earth one would go to play games. The beautiful standup machines and pinball tables all lined up like soilders, demos playing and lights flashing, just begging you for your hard earned quarters. Hard earned because you were a kid of course and had to do menial tasks for your parents or neighbors to get them. Is that enough of an intro or what? On with the game!

Quiz & Dragons premise is quite a mixed bag, and quite a step from nearly every game that Capcom has ever made. The company that brought you major game franchises; Street Fighter, Darkstalkers, Marvel vs Capcom, Final Fight, D&D, even more recently Resident Evil; now brings us gamers a board game, fantasy game, rpg, and trivia game all in a solid and enaging tale.  You see here’s what happened:

Capconia was a peaceful kingdom. Thanks to the power of the “Seed of Wisdom”. The citizens were able to lead their lives in quiet happiness.
The Wisdom Seed: In the hands of the just man it could be used to insure peace. However, a man with evil in his heart could use it’s power to bring down a curtain of dark-ness on the world.

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Dark-ness is particularly frightening…

One day the evil warlock “Gordian” invaded Capconia with a host of his foulest Mon-sters and seized the wisdom seed.

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Mon-sters are the just the worst…

After using the Seed to endow his Mon-sters with evil wisdom, the warlock Gordian launched his assault on the good people of the land. The monsters forced the citizens to answer very difficult questions. Those who could not answer correctly were promptly eaten.
The sage king, Hateba VI, selected the four wisest and bravest in the land and ordered them to recover the Wisdom Seed.
You, the brave… The chosen… You must use your wisdom and strength to save our world.

God! Is that not the most engaging storyline? I am certainly popping a quarter into this bad boy! Stick your quarter in and hit start and away you go to the character selection screen

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“Stop! In the name of love”-Wizard

Each of the four characters possess a different skill to make your journey more feasible. Fighter recovers vitality quickly! Wizard can change category often! Amazon can sometimes cut 1 or 2 choices! Ninja can cause double damage!  Oh what to pick what to pick…hurry you can’t think on it too long or the game will just go on and pick for you. The best choice depends on how you are playing. If you only have a few quarters, go with fighter as he recovers some health as you go. If you’re a dummy and only know a little about certain subjects, go with Wizard. If you are in for the long haul go with Ninja as he will deal double damage and you will complete the game quicker. And of course, if you want to be marveled by amazing thunder thighs, cries of “ya!”, and the power of only two choices on some questions, go with Amazon. (Guess which one my favorite is…ya!)

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Yes, that’s Ninja and not Amazon, I’m trying to get through this quickly for the sake of the article.

Gameplay begins and you are at the start of the first board, or stage. Stage 1:Woods of Legend, is pretty small and straightforward. The dice rolls and that’s how many spaces you move. In the example, a roll of 5 or 6 would take Ninja to Wyvern. However, in the roll of 3, which was rolled, Ninja will be battling Mage. Such excitement!

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The questions, are dated at best, but some more so than others.

When you battle your opponent, you are taken to the trivia part of the game. This is the quiz part and the main part of the game. Not to be confused with the Dragon part, who are merely Gordian’s puppets to wreak havoc open the land of Capconia!!

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The dragons are masters of taunting.

Each enemy you face has a certain amount of life and you take one life from them for each of the answers that you answer correctly, get a question wrong and you the hero, the chosen, lose one.

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Fighter gasps in agony!

Complete the stage by rolling through the board and to the stage boss. After taking down the boss, they will taunt you more about facing Gordian, and you will be taken to the map to select your next stage. Spoiler alert: Play through all 7 stages and you will face Gordian himself!!

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As you travel through each board, they get increasingly more and more complex, with multiple routes and mini bosses along the way.

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Such choices…the path to the inn through the pudding, golem, wyvern, golem, or mage, golem, wyvern, golem. Oh the complexity!

Throughout the boards, there are not just enemies, there are also spaces to help you on your journey. Inns and Elfs. For answering a measly one question, the purveyor of each will either restore your health or give you a useful item. Such as a ring that will show you the correct answer on the next quiz, or a staff that will make the next quiz only have 2 or 3 choices.

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I’m sure she will!

And that’s basically it, like I said the game goes on for 7 stages until you face and defeat Gordian himself and save the Wisdom Seed and restore peace to Capconia. Or until you run out of quarters. Or you get bored. High emphasis on the third choice here. After about 4 stages it gets taxing to stay invested. But, I have completed it several times, and I will tell you that the ending is worth staying around for in about the same manner that the opening scene was for wetting your whistle to play. Ok ok, I won’t tease, I’ll show you what happens.

This is not my video, but sadly the damn thing wouldn’t upload, so a link to the YouTube’s it is.

Fin.
-BB

Character Crush – Peter Parker

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-by Joshie Jaxon

Picture it; Sicily 1962. A lone comic book writer creates a comic character so awesome that he’s still around over 50 years later. Readers, that lone comic book writer was me, and that character, was Peter Parker, Spider-Man. Sorry. I’ll try not to have Golden Girls on as background noise when I write.

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Seriously, how awesome is Peter Parker? Granted, he didn’t start out that way. He was not only a loser, he was interested in science. Poor Peter was never gonna get the girl, and that was fine with me. I could relate to Peter. I wasn’t a science nerd, but I was still a geek. I loved comics, cartoons, and games. Still do. There was a period when such things weren’t as chic and celebrated as they are now. I was so ahead of my time.

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I can’t say that Spider-Man was my first comic ever, that honor goes to Eastman and Laird’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures, I can say that my first Marvel Super Hero comic was Spider-Man. It was the early 90’s, during the Trial of Peter Parker portion of the Clone Saga. I can still remember what store I got it at. It made that much of an impact on my life. I’d found a character that I could relate to. I too, had a clone. Kidding, of course, but how awesome would that be?

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Peter was everything a closeted teenage boy could want. Actually, I only knew I was different, I didn’t quite understand what gay was at the time. Anyhow, Peter had a great body, and never missed a chance to show it off. He’s got a variety of costumes, but I’ll cover those in a later post. Not just exposed flesh, but a skin-tight outfit made for an accelerated heart rate to say the least. Though as I covered in my Nate Grey post, it wasn’t enough for me to risk ruining my books over, the way certain older men do with a maxim. Damn close though.

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Speaking of Nate Grey, he and Peter became friends. On their initial meeting, they skipped the obligatory fight, and opted to go for coffee instead. Tea for Nate, naturally. If only MJ hadn’t been in the picture, things might have ended differently. I’ll just leave this picture right here.

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Not only is our web-slinger super smart, he’s also funny. Peter has a quip for nearly all of the villains in his rogues gallery. From calling Vulture, vulchy, Green Goblin, gobby, to telling Hydro Man the dogs must love him, Peter showed me that there are ways to deal with bad guys besides violence. I dunno if Spider-Man influenced my own wit or not, but I’ll give him partial credit. I was an impressionable teen after all. Though, like Peter, I didn’t come into my own until after high school.

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Peter isn’t without his share of pain. He lost his uncle at a young age, and was semi responsible. He lost what was very well the love of his life at the hands of a madman. He lost what would be considered a brother to him, in the form of Scarlet Spider, Ben Reilly. He and MJ even lost their daughter. Those last three were all to the same nutcase, whose personal mission is to destroy Peter’s life.

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Despite life and villains knocking him down, Peter always gets back up, ready to face the next challenge head on. After all, with great power comes great responsibility.

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-JJ