2016 kicks off with DEADPOOL!

We seem to say it every year, "This is THE year for sci-fi and comic book movie," and it seems every year the movies get bigger and better. I can't even imagine how huge a movie Infinity War will be, and I've got a decent imagination. I wouldn't be surprised if Howard the Duck didn't show up. Anyway, that's 2018, but this year, 2016, is HUGE. We're already still basking in the light of The Force Awakens and Deadpool is skulking around ready to pop up to slice and dice.

My problem is that the nearest cinema from this geek's outback habitat is nearly three hours and when you've got a tribe of four kids who will want to 'come with' then I have to be choosey about which flick to road trip to.

Wolverine: Origins Whatever was a terrible movie that had to happen. It's when, I think, the studios heard the cry that perhaps some fan service is warranted. Perhaps there's a reason why some characters have evolved into something that resonates with readers and perhaps they could be translated to film with a little more respect to the hallowed source material. 

I bet Ryan Reynolds has a lot of frustration playing the part of Deadpool in that god awful movie. I remember a cool helicopter scene and Wolverine jumping out of the bath being to decent scenes, but Holy Frak maybe they should stop making stand-alone Wolverine movies. But who gets a second chance to play the same character again, and this time AS he should be seen? Ryan Reynolds does. Muthafucka made a deal with the devil, fo-sho.

I don't know how he managed to pull the strings that enabled an R-rated balls to the wall, perfectly costumed version of Wade Wilson to come into existence, but it's coming and coming soon. Of course the leaked footage, which was either the perfect storm of viral chance or a carefully  orchestrated piece of propaganda (I think the former), seemed to be enough to let the studio know that there was an audience in desperate need of fan-servicing.

Reviews are already in, and all of them are 11 thumbs up. Bring it on... this might call for a family road trip sans the young'uns.

Inspector Kylo Gadget

It might be just me, but when I see this pic of Kylo Ren I see Inspector Gadget. Long face, big ears, tufts of hair above the ears.


This is a great time of the year for binge television viewing and this short season series is the perfect show to do it with if you love yourself some high adrenalin action. 

Lucas Hood (Antony Starr) is a recently paroled ex-con who assumes the identity of a small town's new sheriff. He's a brooding tough guy who brings to this quiet town huge lashings of cinema quality sex and violence; both quite graphic. It's not a series for the faint-hearted. Each episode has at least two well choreographed action sequences the likes not usually seen on television. You have to suspend your belief and enjoy the unlikely scenarios that come with the premise, because he seems to have almost Rambo/Terminator abilities. Movie viewers are conditioned to seeing someone shot, stabbed and beaten get up and still throw down. 

Three seasons have aired and a fourth and final will air in 2016. They each contain 8-10 episodes, preferring quality over quantity and the producers don't want to 'milk' it by stretching it out beyond four seasons. It's lewd, gory, offensive, eccentric and full of machismo, and it knows it. It's damn entertaining. 

Rating : 8/10 - There are many 'action' television series, but it's rare to see action of this calibre on the small screen 

My Life in Film (Movie meme over my 44 years)

My life in film. The idea is to pick out a movie of personal note for each year of your life from the year they were released. You don't need to have seen it in that particular year. 

1971 Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory: I was born the year one of the greatest family musical comedies was constructed. "Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he always wanted."

1972 Monty Python's Flying Circus: When I was one years old the English discovered that you didn't need a punchline.

1973 The Exorcist: There have been very few completely awesome demon possession movies since. It was already kinda nailed. The only time I saw vomit used so well in a movie was 'Stand by me', and Monty Python's 'The Meaning of Life'.

1974 Young Frankenstein: Goddam, Gene Wilder was awesome.

1975 Jaws: Some movie about a shark whose name 'Jaws' never gets mentioned.

1976 Bugsy Malone: Jody Foster's name was Talula and she lived til she died. Wasn't Chachi in this movie?

1977 Close Encounters of the Third Kind: As a kid I was so confused by this movie title. Was this the third in a trilogy? Where were the other two?

1978 Superman: What can I say. I just remember going to Hungry Jacks (Burger King) afterwards and staring into my Coke in awe of what just happened.

1979 Breaking Away: I honestly spent that year of school trying to speak Italian. Drove family and friends absolutely bonkers. Belissimo!

1980 Star Wars - The Empire Strikes Back: Imagine nine year olds arguing about the soap opera aspects of Darth being Luke's dad etc... long conversations from memory.

1981 Raiders of the Lost Ark: I wouldn't let my little brother see this because of the 'graphic' scenes. I was a douchey big brother.

1982 E.T. The book had m&ms while the movie used Reece's Pieces. That's one of my strongest memories.

1983 Star Wars Return of the Jedi: Man, I loved the original Ewok celebration song at the end. Nub nub nibbidy boo, or something close to that.

1984 Ghostbusters -Nightmare on Elm Street, Beverly Hills Cop, The karate kid. This was a big year for movies, but for absolute brilliance, who ya gonna call? No, honestly? Who?

1985 The Breakfast Club: I just always thought they would have made a good Superhero Team up, Teen Titans, or Power Ranger style. Power of a princess. Power of a Geek... Jock... Emo kid... and etc.

1986 Aliens: The ultimate false ending. Two climaxes!

1987 The Princess Bride: There are people who haven't seen this movie. Worse yet, there are people who have seen it but didn't love it. Go away.

1988 Roger Rabbit: Wow. Nowadays you could make this sort of movie in the tenth of the time with our new fangled CG, but they'd never come close to this level of amazement.

1989 Batman: I almost cried from disappointment that there weren't enough Batman money shots. I learned to love it after I got some more perspective. More of my thoughts on Burton's Batman here.

1990 Ghost: I liked it.

1991 Terminator 2: Shiny melty man. Yeah, I'm getting bored now. Read on.

1992 Unforgiven: When I went to see this movie with some of my douche Christian friends, some of them did a 'walk out'. I was uncomfortable too. God I love this movie.

1993 Groundhog Day: If I was stuck in a time-loop repeating day I would... umm... you know what? Groundhog Day covered EVERYTHING

1994 The Lion King: Elton John was a big deal to me back then. We saw it a few times in the cinema, and it was animated! A new era was dawning.

1996 Braveheart: Soundtrack, battle scenes, script. GUSH

1997 Independence Day: Fun

1998 Titanic: I saw this in the cinema four times, as did everyone else I knew. I was a very gay man, I'm now thinking.

1999 The Prince of Egypt: Yeah, I was still a Christian at that point. This was 'way' cool for my types.

2000 Gladiator: See notes for Braveheart

2001 A.I. - Don't hate on me. I fell in love with this film and I completely loved and teared up at the ending.

2002 Spider-man: Cool. I just kept on rewinding that last city swing scene.

2003 Finding Nemo: Freaking awesome eye candy, and Ellen was perfect as Dora the fishy explorer.

2004 Before Sunset: The most fulfilling and beautiful romantic film of all time. It's one long chat, but we love it and its sequel to bits. Ethan Hawke gets a free ticket for life from me, for this.

2005 Star Wars - Revenge of the Sith: Nooooooooo!

2006 Borat: So funny. So freaking funny. As was Bruno.

2007 The Brave One: I like vigilantes and Jodie Foster, from Bugsy Malone to this.

2008 The dark knight: OMG OMG OMG (See Dark Knight blog post)

2009 Avatar: 3D done damn right. Remember 12 months earlier we were promised this would be 'F*cking' our eyeballs. It did.

2010 127 hrs: Yeah, go humans! We can do it! Inspiring stuff. Oh yeah, and I love it when Jo nestles her head in my arms and can't watch gory bits.

2011 X-Men: First Class - Because it truly was 'first class'.

2012 The Avengers: It's the golden age of Superhero movies and I'm feeling spoilt. Sorry Batman... Marvel wins this round.

2013 Man of Steel: It was so flawed and annoying in parts, but Goddam it was good to see Superman punching things.

2014 Captain America - The Winter Soldier: This movie made you believe a man could throw a shield.

2015 Star Wars - The Force Awakens AND Avengers - Age of Ultron: Why should I have to decide between the two (although notice Star Wars got top billing).

My Cinematic Alphabet - 'S' stands for Superman: The Movie

Superman: The Movie. There was no mistaking this for a comic, or a toothbrush. This was a movie and the movie title said so. Thanks for the head's up, marketers. It reminds me of the first Star Trek movie, The Motion Picture; and the recent Simpsons' Movie, so titled. It's a redundant adage, but it solidifies it as an 'event'.

A real actor that looks like Clark Kent and has a real flapping cape! A superhero suit that looks as good, if not better than the one in the actual comic book? Unbelievable. The idea that a man can fly? Believable.

The opening credits were a bit long, but the soundtrack was a magical mix of mythical melody that immediately spilt into our skulls. And stayed there. The Krypton sequence... too long. The sulky Smallville years... not as long. The amount of time before we saw him in flight? About an hour and ten minutes.

Sure, Lex should have been bald. Sure, he shouldn't be hanging around with morons. Sure, Superman should not be able to go back in time whenever Lois dies. But that sky scream he gives by the car? Awesome. The montage that included saving the kitty from the tree? Cute. The wink he gives the audience thereby breaking the fourth wall, at the end? Totally forgivable. Superman II was more of a continuation and was even more fun. The other sequels, including Supergirl and Superman Returns? Never happened.


A couple of my Tweets got 'Twaggied!' The gang at Twaggies are artists who create ‘crowdsourced’ comics from nominated Tweets via Twitter and visualise them into one panel comics. 

Go to the site and scroll through all of them IF you like to laugh. It’s a terrific idea and they’re brilliant at what they do.

My Twitter: @Mothpete

  ~Illustration by: Pete Hillstrom~

Batman Began

This was the moment - True Love
In 1988, I discovered Batman when the newspapers ran with the story that Robin's death would be voted on by readers. Yep, the new readership they wanted by writing sensational event stories sucked me in. Until then I read black and white Phantom comics and had never considered buying the more expensive American magazines. And besides, Batman was some campy crap from TV. I was ignorant to the comic series, but this news that the Joker had pounded Robin to a bloody pulp with a crowbar got me interested. It seemed the campy stuff was over long ago. The first actual Batman comic I saw completely won me over. It showed him upside down, hanging from a tree. Oh yeah, I wanted to be that guy. It was the most striking image I had ever seen. I was smitten, and I still am.

Nipple free
I started to devour all things Batman. All the back stories and stand alone graphic novels, all the compendiums, and toys... everything. I drew batman icons on paper, and made suits for costume parties. There's something about that icon that is primal to me. I've even got a Batman symbol tattooed on my shoulder and I never tire of it. I became obsessive for the Dark Knight and I studied the character with devoted admiration. Soon after, I discovered that Tim Burton was making a film, and my imagination went wild. What would the Bat suit look like, and the car, and the cave? How would they show the years of dedicated training that formed this dark and disturbed yet focussed superior hero (yes, superhero) detective. It was a big budget movie and I hope it was going to be the biggest movie event of my lifetime.

Batman broods, and I like that idea. A hero that sulks. I could do that. Bruce Wayne is the epitome of obsessiveness and was a normal guy with billions of dollars, and dedication. Much like the Phantom, I was interested in the idea that anyone could be a superhero if you had a good reason and some determination. I've had plenty of arguments with people about the label 'Superhero', but I'll stand by it. Batman is 'super' enabled, much like most of the heroes of Gotham. He's more than ordinary... Super Ordinary? He's completely honed, so bad guys are completely owned.

Cool. Very cool.
Back to the movie. It opened to some deep emotionally charged soundtrack and a camera angle that weaved and swooped us through a maze that later revealed itself as the Batman emblem itself, in all its glory. It was beautiful and perfect. This was going to be great! The first scene involved a very dramatic and operatic caped figure instilling fear into a couple of thugs, and he told them... he, was Batman. The Batsuit looked dark and shiny and although he had a fat looking head and a chest emblem that didn't quite look right AT ALL, it had flair and presence.

It was all set up to be something more than magic, but then the Joker showed up, and literally stole the show. He stole it. He was in most of the scenes whereas I wanted to see more Batman. Not a Clark Kentish Bruce Wayne clutzing about and NOT the Joker being campy. I wanted to see the batsuit again. I wanted to see the cape fluttering by as he swang through the city and jumped from rooftops. He could hardly move his neck. He had so much rubber on him I couldn't see how he could make like Bruce-Lee and stealthily get around and kick ass, but for me, it's all about the cape, and the cape looked great.

Issue #700
I left the movie completely disappointed. Why wasn't he swinging through the city and jumping between rooftops? Why wasn't the movie simply called 'Joker'. I was underwhelmed, and kinda upset. On subsequent viewings I got a better perspective, but it wasn't my Batman. It was 'a' Batman though, and there was a lot to love about the movie. We never got enough time with BatBruce, and decades on we're still begging for more time with the man. In Batman Begins, we did at least get some backstory to the Bat story and then later we were lucky enough to get another Batman/Joker movie. Yeah, he still has the clunky bat-suit, and unfortunately it looks like it was made from car tires, tread and all, but it was a huge brilliant movie (although full of plot-holes). It'll probably be another twenty years before we see Batman and Joker at it again where their Dynamic Dual can be dissected some more, but I'm learning to be patient.

Robocop Moth

One of my followers on Twitter made this video for me incorporating my 'Mothpete' alias with his Robocop's. It's weird. I like it.

My Cinematic Alphabet - 'R' stands for Raiders and Robocop

Raiders of the Lost Ark

This is how I like my Indiana Jones: young, non-wrinkled and free of flying fridges. Indiana was the quintessential serialised rugged action hero plucked from a non-existent radio series and given eternal life by Lucas. God bless 'im for the wonder years of cinema, before he regurgitated them into the plunder years of cinema. My god, Indy 4 winked at itself so much that I could feel a breeze. You have to consider it a spoof rather than a sequel and then strike it from the records. I think most of us have already. I do hear the lego game version is great. Lego 'anything' is cute. Heck even a lego Steve Buscemi with a Predator's mandible mouth would be cute.

'Raiders' was there first with the greatest epic dusty action adventure of the modern age, and it had the score, the man, the hat and the whip we boys all wanted to own. I would've ruled the schoolyard with a whip like that. Indy was great when he was hunting religious relics and we were there in awe when the Ark was finally opened. Then we rewound the VHSs again and wewatched it many more times watching Nazi's faces melt off. Good times.


Never before has the story of Jesus been told so eloquently, and with so many high tech machine guns. If Jesus died and rose again sometime in the future, how could he not want to do it Robocop style? Oh yeah, the whole 'peace' thing. Whatever. The late 80s was an amazing time for action movies with Die Hard, First Blood and Lethal Weapon, and they didn't hold back on the swearing, drug use, and memorable one-liners.

Robocop had it all! Sweet stop-start animation, and a costume design that never dated. NEVER. It's just gorgeous to look at and have as an action figure that I'm not allowed to display. All the robot designs were timeless. I loved Robocop 2 also, and I think it was an awesome thing with some real nasty stuff RoboMurphy had to deal with, despite Frank Miller not being able to do exactly what he wanted with it.

Thirty years later it seems Hollywood is trying hard to recapture the feel of those movies, but it just seems they're over. A reboot to Robocop has been mulled over for a while now, but Robo's resurrection was already done to perfection, and then overdone by the time the crappy Robocop 3 was released, plus subsequent TV series. No actor nowadays is going to sign up for a movie where half of his face is going to be covered up for the most part. Robocop has no Bruce Wayne alias that allows him to go out at night to sip cocktails. He's a brooking hulk of a figure that misses his wife and kid. 

He's only human. Onya Murph.

A Very Merry 40th Batmany Birthday to me!

After 40 years of wandering this wilderness like the children of Israel did for their 40 years, I'm expecting the Promised Land. Life begins now. It always begins now I suppose, but there's nothing like big round numbers to drive home the fact, that it's still happening... which is nice.

Thanks to my gorgeous and very graciously thoughtful partner, Joey, I've a very geeky bat-themed 40th birthday (or two) to try to keep me young. All six of our Brady Bunch family are here with me today and that's the best part of it.

I love the cake. Love it. I can't wait to eat the buildings in a few hours. I'm definitely putting dibs on the Bat Signal.

She had some frames for four of my favourite comics made out of some very rustic looking timber. I spent a good part of the day going through my collection trying to decide which to put behind the glass. Unfortunately 'The Killing Joke' was just a bit too faded to make the cut. A Death in the Family was my first, and I like the look of the others. A Joker-toxined Catwoman looks great, as does 'Speeding Bullets', an Elseworlds issue where the Waynes find Clark instead of the Kents.

I'm also chuffed with my first genuine DC Direct Batman statue and I freaking love the pose and the way the cape supports him. The 'Sock Monkey' Batman was custom made for us, and the little Bats and Supes are too incredibly cute. Thanks honey. Here's to another 40, at least. X PB.

Batman with a gun? Smart move in my opinion.

Much better than the suit in Batman Begins!
A very huggable Bat Sock Monkey

Actor's Filmography meme (Bruce Willis)

Using only movie titles from one actor or actress, cleverly answer these questions. Check Wikiipedia or imdb for filmographies.

Pick an actor: Bruce Willis

1. Are you male or female: Last Boy Scout

2. Describe yourself: The Bonfilre of Vanities 

3. How do you feel about yourself: The Kid

4. Describe your ex boyfriend/girlfriend: Perfect Stranger

5. Describe your current boy/girl situation: What just happened? 

6. Describe your current location: Striking Distance

7. Describe where you want to be: Sin City

8. Your best friend is: Nobody's Fool

9. Your favorite color is: The Colour of Night

10. You know that: Rugrats go wild

11. What’s the weather like: Tears of the Sun

12. If your life was a television show what would it be called? Moonlighting

13. What is life to you: The Story of Us

14. What is the best advice you have to give: Die Hard

15. If you could change your name what would you change it to: Hudson Hawk