…a league of their own?

I know, I know, I’m a month late on this, but hey, life gets in the way. One way or another more critters are here!

Justice League. I’m not sure what I expected. I already had low expectations because DC hasn’t had a great track record with their recent movies (with Wonder Woman being an exception), but I felt the need to see Justice League out of some strange obligation because I’d already seen all the other movies leading up to it.

I really didn’t want to keep comparing it to the Avengers. But man, it was SO HARD not to constantly think of what the Avengers got right and what Justice League got wrong. Without spoiling the movie, I feel like the movie actually made me realize how flawed the entire idea of the Justice League is to begin with. But I’ll put in my detailed commentary below after the pictures. Critters will still be made, because at least the characters still have a long-running legacy that won’t be ruined by just one mediocre movie. 🙂

Superman-5268

First up, Superman! And oops, spoiler alert, SUPERMAN COMES BACK. Because as much as the studio tried to suppress that super-obvious fact, yes, he does show up in the movie. Otherwise the man of steel has been a constant companion with me at Comic-Con for the past seven years, and he’ll be coming with me for an eight round!

Batman-5263 copy

“I’m rich.”

Next: the rich dude with major abandonment issues. Batman has also been a constant critter at SDCC from the first year that I’ve been doing my critter drops, and he’ll be joining Superman in the 8-year club this coming summer!

Flash background-5270 copy

And uh…dammit, I missed him again. This guy’s fast. REAL fast.

Flash-5272 copy

There he is! The Flash is a new addition to the critter line up! I loved Ezra Miller as Flash in the Justice League. He added a fun “rookie superhero” element to it all, very similar to Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War.

Flash detail-5304 copy

He was a fun addition to the movie, and hopefully he’ll be a fun new addition to my critter drop lineup!

Otherwise here are my more detailed thoughts on the movie:

 

 

AHOY, THERE BE SPOILERS!

 

 

SPOILERS AHEAD!!

 

 

Okay, there were SO MANY things wrong with the Justice League movie. And really the more I think about it, the more I get pissed off that DC just can’t seem to get their shit together to make all this work. So just a warning that this is really going to be more of a rant.

  • …why did they need Aquaman? They spent so much time on Aquaman’s refusal to join the team. Storytelling 101 dictates that if you’re going to focus that much on the conflict, the payoff in the end better be pretty big. When the final “battle” came, he did nothing relevant to his powers. They couldn’t have conveniently put a CGI river somewhere? A kiddie pool? Anything?? Why would you showcase Aquaman if you’re not going to put him near ANY sort of body of water?
  • Also are Atlanteans only capable of speaking to each other in air bubbles? They’re water people. They can’t…talk through water?
  • All the heavier-hitting jokes that people would’ve laughed at were in the trailers and TV spots. The only gag that wasn’t revealed in the trailers or promo clips was the whole thing with Aquaman sitting on Wonder Woman’s lasso of truth. Whoever is cutting the trailers and TV spots, please stop doing this.
  • So….you just had to scare Steppenwolf and the parademons would’ve turned on him because they could smell his fear? And you made him fearful by…destroying his axe? Just…what?
  • Relevant to the fear thing: if it’s already been heavily established that the parademons can smell fear and wreak havoc based on this, why were they completely ignoring this terrified Russian family that the movie felt the need to focus on?
  • WHAT’S THE POINT OF A JUSTICE LEAGUE IF IT TURNS OUT SUPERMAN CAN DO EVERYTHING? The entire premise of the movie turned into “Batman collects all these people with special powers just to hold us over until Superman gets back.” I get that the entire scene with Superman taking out the rest of the Justice League upon resurrection was supposed to remind us all how powerful Superman is, but to me it only showed how useless everyone else was in comparison. The only character who had abilities that Superman didn’t already have was Cyborg. And maybe Aquaman’s fish-talking abilities, but clearly no one needed that shit. The entire Justice League could’ve been reduced to Superman and Cyborg. This is what I mean when I say that this movie actually showed me how flawed the idea of the Justice League is to begin with. I hate making comparisons to the Avengers because I really want to see the two as separate entities, but the thing that makes the Avengers an actual team is that each character has their own abilities and limitations, and together they complement each other and help each other out when they need to save the world. The Flash is fast? Welp, so is “faster than a speeding bullet” Superman. Wonder Woman is super strong? So is Superman. Aquaman can talk to fish? Superman can’t do that, but he can zip through water and save entire cruise liners from going under. Superman is too omnipotent to effectively create a team without it seeming like “Superman and his lesser minions.”
  • Just give the movie to Patty Jenkins.

 

 

END SPOILERS.

The thing that’s so frustrating about The Justice League is that it had everything set up for it to be good. They’ve got a huge budget, they’ve got iconic characters already to start out with, and the cast is full of charisma – Ezra Miller seems like a genuinely excited geeky guy, Gal Gadot’s become a Hollywood darling thanks to her work as Wonder Woman, Henry Cavill is oozing with good looks and charm, and Jason Momoa is the kind of guy who could hype up a chess tournament, and yet somehow the movie STILL fell flat. You can have all the best ingredients in the world with a top-notch recipe, but you still can’t expect to bake a good cake by throwing everything into a bowl and thinking it’ll all magically work out. The Justice League starred the top three most iconic superheroes known in history and DC somehow still couldn’t make it work, while Marvel has been working with characters that people didn’t give a damn about and instantly put them on the map in everyday pop culture. Before Marvel kickstarted their current movie franchise, the only thing I knew about Iron Man was that he was a dude in a flying robot suit. The only thing I knew about Captain America was that he was some guy in a goofy-ass ‘MURICA! outfit with a shield. I had zero clue who the hell Star Lord was or why there was a raccoon involved. And yet all of these characters are now considered household favorites. I grew up far more with Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman than I ever did with any of the Avengers, and yet these are the characters that keep disappointing fans over and over again. I’m probably taking it more personally than I should, but it hurts a lot more when it’s your childhood favorites that are being repeatedly dragged through the mud. DC, please do better. For all of us.

My own salty views on the movie aside, I’ll still have three little members of the Justice League in tow with me at San Diego Comic-Con this summer. Find them and they’re yours to keep!

Jl group-5323 copy

If you want to join my hunt for crocheted critters at San Diego Comic-Con this year, follow me on either twitter or facebook to track my drops! I just ask for two things if you find a critter: 1) Send me a photo of your new friend! 2) Let me know where the little buddy’s new home will be! Good luck, and happy hunting!

The Geeky Hooker

 

Advertisements
Posted in Batman, DC, SDCC, Superheroes | Leave a comment

STOP. Hammer time!

Thor: Ragnarok: LOVED it. Easily in my top 3 from the Marvel cinematic universe. It’s like they studied Guardians of the Galaxy, extracted all the parts that made it great with surgical precision, and upgraded all of it into a fantastically fun movie while giving Thor a great reboot to his character. Thor has been my least favorite standalone character out of the entire Marvel cinematic universe, but Thor: Ragnarok was so freaking fun that it’s brought him solidly back onto my radar. Loved seeing Loki’s return, loved seeing Doctor Strange for a little bit, loved Valkyrie and the Grandmaster, loved loved LOVED Korg, but if there’s one character I wished we saw more of, it was Hela. So I made a critter. 😀

Hela-5189 copy

My sister is back and you’re gonna be in trooouble,
He-laaaaaa, He-laaaaaa, my sister’s back!”

Hela hammer-5175 copy

Hela, goddess of death, certified badass, and well, she definitely doesn’t like sharing her toys. To the point where she breaks her little brother’s favorite one. Booooo.

Hela - head detail-5242 copy

I LOVED her look. Making the headdress was kind of tricky, but I managed to figure something out with some craft foam.

Hela headress detail-5236 copy

She may be the goddess of death, but she’ll sparkle in just the right light! All the reference photos I looked at showed her headdress being a beautifully subtle mix of black, green, and gold. I tried to replicate that as best I could without it looking too showy.

Hela-5238 copy

And guess what? She’ll be coming with me to San Diego Comic-Con 2018! My first critter for SDCC 2018 is officially done! Find her there and she’s yours to keep! Otherwise here’s my thoughts on Thor: Ragnarok:

 

 

SPOILERS!!

 

AHOY! THERE BE SPOILERS A’COMING!!

 

 

  • Can we talk about what a shitty dad Odin was for a minute here?? First he failed to tell Loki that he was adopted. But we still saw him as good ol’ noble Odin for some reason. Now you’re telling us that he had a daughter who became one of his biggest sources of support and power for his campaign to create an empire, and then when she got “too ambitious,” instead of trying to talk things out or find some other way to use her potential, HE LOCKED HER UP AND ERASED ALL MEMORIES OF HER? And then he didn’t bother telling his other two sons until she breaks out? “LOL I forgot to tell you guys, you have a sister and she’s coming to wreck shit up. Have funnnnnn.” Goddamn Odin, you really suck at parenting.
  • Short hair Thor > long hair Thor. There. I said it. The haircut is hot. ❤
  • Minor pet peeve: where the hell did all that ammo come from in Skurge’s guns in the end?? I’ll chalk it up to some Asgardian upgrades or something.
  • The Hulk calming down after seeing Black Widow was cheezy. Meh.
  • I really wanted to see more of Hela. She came in guns blazing, but we didn’t get to see much else from her. Loved Cate Blanchett in the role, it’s a shame we didn’t get more of it.
  • A few wonky CGI jobs here and there, but otherwise visually speaking it looked fantastic. I LOVED the shot with the valkyries battling Hela.
  • There were SO many good moments in this movie. From Thor’s spectacularly awkward story about Loki turning into a snake, his quietly bewildered utterance of “what the hell?” as he’s being transported to meet the Grandmaster, ALL of Korg’s lines, Bruce Banner heroically leaping from the quinjet and then falling flat onto the bridge…seriously great pacing and loads of great gags to keep things moving.
  • Lots of fakeouts from the trailer, and in a good way! Sometimes you watch a trailer and then you walk away from the actual movie thinking “wait, what the hell, none of that was there.” This was a case where the trailer fakeouts all worked out to be pleasant surprises.
  • Korg. I know people keep saying we need more Korg, but I’d argue that we had the PERFECT amount of Korg and it was amazingly hilarious. I’d love to see Korg in future movies, but only if they sprinkle in just the right amount like they did here. He’s definitely a treat that is best used in moderation.

 

END SPOILERS.

 

 

I had loads of fun making Hela, and I’ve already got a preliminary list of what critters I’ve got in mind to make for SDCC this year! Critter making season has begun! Let the fun begin!

If you want to join my hunt for crocheted critters at San Diego Comic-Con this year, follow me on either twitter or facebook to track my drops! I just ask for two things if you find a critter: 1) Send me a photo of your new friend! 2) Let me know where the little buddy’s new home will be! Good luck, and happy hunting!

The Geeky Hooker

 

Posted in Adoptions, Marvel, SDCC | Leave a comment

You’ll float too. YOU’LL FLOAT TOO.

When it comes to horror movies, I’ve got a VERY narrow range between what I enjoy and what I can handle. Slasher films? Meh. Dark and twisted narratives with a few scares peppered in? Love it. SUPER twisted shit that’ll make me lose sleep for months? Nope. NOPE. Bottom line is that I’m still a big ol’ chicken shit. I’ve grown to enjoy horror movies more, but all the horror movies I’ve watched have been at home, with friends, and with one light on somewhere. But the trailer for the “It” remake intrigued me enough. I wanted to see it because it looked good. I DIDN’T want to see it because it looked good.

Pennywise - teaser-5045 copy

“I’m every nightmare you’ve ever had.”

I’d never watched the original miniseries in its entirety before, so I thought I’d make up for lost time and fully watch the original before watching the remake. It’s pretty dated now, but one thing that doesn’t change is how FREAKY Tim Curry was as Pennywise the clown.

Pennywise-4998 copy

It’s not every day where a look of horror is the EXACT reaction that I want out of a critter I make. 😀

Pennywise - face detail-5032 copy

That red nose would be kind of darling if it weren’t for the whole “eating children” thing.

Pennywise - collar detail-5029

Pennywise could use some fashion advice, but on the other hand his outfit is nailing that whole “creepy ass sewer-dwelling murder clown” look.

Pennywise - clothing details-5065

One thing that was surprisingly difficult for me to find was the balloon. That damn balloon. I was planning on getting a little plastic balloon cake topper and calling it a day, but I couldn’t find one instore ANYWHERE. I tried looking for other alternatives, but in the end nothing beats the real deal. Turns out inflated water balloons did the trick perfectly.

Balloon-5018

As for the new movie: it was my first time seeing a horror movie in a theater. And it was FUN. Turns out horror movies are the one exception where it’s permissible to speak in a theater, because goodness knows there were plenty of times where I involuntarily uttered “oh HELL NO” at the screen before something happened. I won’t be stepping into a theater to watch The Conjuring anytime soon, but I’ll definitely be looking forward to It: Chapter 2. Until then this little guy will be around to terrorize me from my shelf!

Pennywise - white background-5018 copy

“We allll float down here.”

Posted in Horror | 3 Comments

“Börk börk börk!”

I’m still feeling stunned from Harvey last week, and I wasn’t even directly affected by the storm, but the sooner I can get back to your regular crochet programming, the better! Please continue to donate and help out, and for all you folks in Florida and its neighboring islands, please stay safe in the face of Irma!

You know all those super cool photos in my book Literary Yarns? The clean and stylish page layouts? The formatting of the patterns? The pre-order campaigns that were rolled out? I can’t take credit for ANY of that. When I wrote Literary Yarns, I was fortunate enough to have an amazingly helpful team of folks from Quirk Books to help me through the process and do a lot of the heavy lifting for me. I wrote the patterns, the how-to instructions, and I shot the step-by-step photos in the tutorial sections, but everything else? It was all done by some amazing people. Once the book was out I knew I had to make thank you critters for everyone involved with the book. I’ve already posted some of the thank you critters I’ve made on my social media accounts, but there was one that I still needed to make, and that was for my editor Tiffany. She kept on insisting that working on Literary Yarns with me was good enough, but I kept insisting back that she should pick something. And it just so happened that her pick was also one of my favorite characters:

Swedish Chef-4927 copy

“Börk börk börk!”

THE SWEDISH CHEF. I FREAKING LOVE THE SWEDISH CHEF. It always slightly freaked me out that he had these creepy normal human hands, but I still loved him with his nonsense gibberish and his chaotic “cooking.”

Swedish Chef knife-4910 copy

“Heer we håv de choppy chop!”

Chicken-4961

“Und heer we håv de chicky! Güd chicky. Tåstee chicky.”

Looks like that chicken’s going to be in some trouble. SAVE YOURSELF, CHICKEN-FRIEND.

And here are the other thank you critters that I’ve made!

Photographer Mike wanted an Alec Guinness Obi-Wan Kenobi:

Editor Blair wanted a fangirl from the cover of the Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy:

Designer Andie wanted a Bill Cipher from Gravity Falls:

Designer Molly wanted a little Glenn Danzig:

And publicist Kelsey wanted an 11th Doctor:

Doctor-4228 small

Literary Yarns couldn’t have happened without all their help, and I can’t think of a better group of people to work with on my first published work!

And just one more plug (with good intentions!)…if you enjoyed seeing my Swedish Chef, maybe help out a food-related cause by donating to the Houston Food Bank! They’re always doing good work around town, but they’ve especially been beefing up their efforts since the storm hit. Feed some folks who need a hot meal, and save some lives. The Swedish Chef thanks you!

The_Swedish_Chef

Posted in crochet love, H-town love | 1 Comment

F*ck you, Harvey

I’m safe, my friends and family are safe. My parents are now in a mandatory evacuation area, but otherwise so far so good. Hopefully it stays that way.

I’ve been extremely lucky during this storm. I’ve had some street flooding, but none of it entered my home and I never lost power or running water. I was supposed to go in to work over the weekend, but once the storm started coming down, I couldn’t have made it in if I tried. The Texas Medical Center became entirely inaccessible. Most of the city was entirely inaccessible.

rtx3dkue

Many of my co-workers at the hospital I work at ended up stuck and became the ride out team, unable to go home for days. Thankfully they’ve finally been able to go home, and I’ve been called back into work.

The thing that pisses me off more than this storm? The way the news outlets have covered it. I’m not one to grumble too much about the media. I feel like as long as you keep a diligent eye on what you’re reading and do your homework, it’ll be fine. But goddammit, FUCK ALL OF YOU NEWS OUTLETS for the kind of reporting I saw during the storm. While people were trapped in their homes calling for help you were busy focusing on the MINUSCULE amount of negative incidents that happened during this time. You CHOSE to focus on the one asshole who decided to rob someone. You CHOSE to shit on mayor Turner’s decision to tell everyone to stay put. I noticed almost all of the ridiculous articles that focused on his decision not to evacuate (I’m looking at you, CNN) didn’t speak to a single person who was from Houston to give commentary. Guess what? A vast majority of us Houstonians feel like he made the right call. I originally had a long profanity-laced rant about this, but for the sake of time I’ll let this twitter thread speak for me (click to read the whole thing):

Mayor Turner has been calm, collected, and cautiously warning us that just because the sun has finally come out it wasn’t time to be unwise. Long story short, he couldn’t save everyone, but he very damn well saved thousands of us. Don’t you dare talk shit about this until it’s over.

The coverage is starting to look more positive now that the storm has passed, but it was extremely frustrating to see our own local news anchors working nonstop to keep us informed (and in many ways, alive), while the national coverage seemed to be telling a different story. What SHOULD have been the focus was the incredible amount of good that happened during this time. When 911 was overwhelmed, regular citizens who owned boats went out and took it upon themselves to rescue people from their flooded homes. There was no city-wide statement asking anyone to help, people just did it. When some bakers were trapped in their bakery for two days, they passed the time by baking loads of pan dulce to give to flood victims once they got out. A local furniture salesman who is usually known more for his tacky commercials opened up his stores to shelter people who had lost their homes, and sent out his delivery trucks to pick people up from their homes to transport them. (side note: Gallery Furniture stores are also by far the cushiest shelters in town right now, with people sleeping on high-end mattresses instead of cots) Our local Texas grocery store chain HEB sent out emergency convoys as soon as the storm hit the southern coastal parts of Texas and started providing food and supplies for those in need. When the George R. Brown Convention Center opened itself up as a shelter, there was a line DOWN THE STREET of volunteers ready to help out. When I tried shopping for donation items after I had cleared out everything I already had in my house, the store shelves were already sold out of all of the items that were listed as needed items. The George R. Brown Convention Center (which is a HUGE facility) had so many donations that they had to start collecting at ANOTHER large stadium, and even that got filled up overnight. OVERNIGHT.  There’s so much love and willingness to help each other in this city. We may have been under water, but we will not drown.

The rain has stopped, but the recovery is going to be a long process. Please keep Houston in your thoughts, but please don’t forget about the southern coastal towns like Rockport and Port Aransas who were hit so much harder than Houston from the get-go and are also desperately in need of help.

HOW TO HELP:

J.J. Watt, our resident nice-guy Texans player started a fund and it’s become an insane and amazing celebrity bidding war to see who can donate the most. You can contribute your part here.

And here’s (9/5: edited to an updated link from NPR) a good list of charities to donate to, spanning across relief funds, to additional funds for first responders, etc. And remember that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with being cautious before donating. When in doubt, check any charities that you plan on donating to on Charity Navigator.

If you’re local, here’s a list of shelters that you can volunteer at or donate supplies. As of the time of writing this (8/31), George R. Brown Convention Center, BBVA Compass Stadium, NRG Park, and Salvation Army are at capacity with donations (within DAYS of opening!), but they still could use volunteers! FYI: if you’re volunteering as a medical professional at George R. Brown or NRG Park you can go to the front of the volunteer line and tell them you’re a medical volunteer (I showed them my work badge) and they’ll let you in.

Houston isn’t an easy city to love. It doesn’t have the immediate glitz or glamour of New York or LA. Even as a local I wouldn’t recommend it as a vacation spot. But it’s a FANTASTIC place to live. Things won’t come to you in Houston, you’ll have to do some work to seek out everything that’s great about this place. But once you find your place in this city, it loves you back tenfold, and a large majority of that is because of all the amazing people we have here. Hang in there, everyone. The bumpy road to recovery has just begun, but we’ve got each other and we’re going to make it. ❤

Posted in H-town love | 4 Comments

WUBBA LUBBA DUB DUB!

FINALLY. After over a year of slowly working on these guys on and off, I’m finally done! BEHOLD! THE DYNAMIC DUO.

R&M running-4826 copy

It’s Rick and Morty! And they’re ready to get schwifty:

R&M Schwifty-4868 copy

The toughest part about making these guys? Rick’s bald spot on the back of his head. I made a bunch of tiny little cones, and arranging them on the back of his head was surprisingly difficult. Too spaced out and he looked TOO bald. Too crowded and then it looked like an awkward blank spot on the back of his head. I’m still not 100% sold on it, but I think it worked out alright in the end.

Bald spot-4882 copy

And of course I had to sew on a little burp spittle on him. Rick wouldn’t be Rick without a bit of a mess on him.

Spittle-4892 copy

WOOO TINY RICK!

Tiny rick-4899 copy

It took me over a year to finally get these guys done, but here they are. With season 3 currently running, I have a feeling I’ll be steadily adding to my mental list of characters to make. Wubba lubba dub dub!

R&M-1 small copy

Posted in adult swim | 7 Comments

It ain’t over ’til the last critter drops

Alright, let’s talk about this year’s critter drops. Forty-nine. Forty. Nine. Drops. The most I’ve EVER brought on my own was fifteen, so this was quite literally over 3 times more than my heaviest haul in seven years. But dammit, I was determined. I didn’t get the 100% response rate that I wanted (I knew it was ambitious, but dammit, I TRIED), but I’d say it went pretty damn well! Here’s the breakdown:

TOTAL NUMBER OF PIECES BROUGHT TO SAN DIEGO: 49

DEpKaW5UAAAoFpo

20187059_10159061436780710_1299531600_o

I flew into San Diego with a duffel bag (a freaking DUFFEL BAG) stuffed with 44 critters, and upon landing I tacked on an extra 5 pieces as a last minute addition. Forty-nine critters in need of good homes!

LOST SOULS

I wanted to put this at the end of the post, but I felt like it would be better to put it up front before people start zoning out and they miss it at the bottom. THESE GUYS ARE UNACCOUNTED FOR! Britt’s Wonder Woman, Marcy’s Skeksis, Pam’s fleeb, and my Deadpool, Penguin, and Dr. Strange were all taken from their hiding spots, but I never received a confirmation message! If you or someone you know has any of these critters, it’s never too late to check in! Remember that if you have a private twitter account I can’t see your tweets, so if that’s the case then please email me at geekyhooker@gmail.com! I’d love to hear from you, and I’d love to let the guest artists know that their work is safe and sound! 🙂 I’m not going to add these to my lost list quite yet, so hopefully I’ll hear back on these little guys!

THE HUNT

You guys, dropping 49 critters was HARD. I had to break some of my own rules and do a few things I don’t normally do. I did drops after dark because I couldn’t get my day’s stash out before sundown, I personally handed off a few critters  when I normally drop ‘n run (which actually turned out awesome, but more on that later!), and I ended up doing Sunday drops for the first time because I just couldn’t get through all of my stash by Saturday! A lot of it also had to do with me staying in Hall H all day Saturday, but it was still a constant drop train the whole way through. I split up the work between friends, family, and the good folks over at the SDCC Unofficial Blog which helped IMMENSELY, but since I was acting as the primary point of contact for all the drops I was still keeping a constant eye on my phone for tweets and/or text messages to let me know a critter had been dropped or that a critter had been found. Many of the drops also felt rushed and I could have hidden some of them better. I had help (thank you thank you THANK YOU to everyone who helped me drop!), and with all of our efforts combined, I’d say we had a pretty successful hunt!

MEETING HUNTERS!

Before heading out to SDCC, I had a few followers ask if I could sign their copies of Literary Yarns while I was there. Since I had a decent number of people ask, I thought I’d do an informal offsite book signing and scouted out Berkeley Pizza as a location. I also still had one Superman critter left to drop for the day, so I thought I’d hand it off to the first person to find me there. I set up shop on Wednesday evening and waited.

book signing.jpg

I’ll admit I was a little nervous. What if no one shows up? What if too many people show up and I get overwhelmed? What if it turns out that none of my followers were real people, but all one giant trollbot who’s been TAKING ALL THE CRITTERS ALL ALONG AND NOW IT’S COMING AFTER ME OMG PANIC PANIC PANIC?? Turns out I didn’t get overwhelmed, nor was I stalked by a giant trollbot (that I know of). The first people to show up were a pair from Hawaii and I got to hand off my little Superman to a longtime hunter! And I get to add Hawaii to my critter map! Woohoo!!

We chatted for a while, and then I noticed the following tweet alert on my phone:

WAIT WHAT. I wasn’t about to interrupt my conversation, but HOLY CRAP I WAS BEING STALKED BY A TROLLBOT AFTER ALL. Except not really. Turns out Satoru, a longtime hunter who was doing drops of his own this year, decided to do a drop RIGHT BEHIND ME like a creeper without saying hi first. 😛 Once the kind folks from Hawaii took off I turned around, found my creeper, and invited him to sit with me. 😀 We exchanged stories about our drops for the day, and I got to hear about how he found one of my critters last year! I had a fantastic time meeting hunters and droppers and it was a great way to kick off my first evening of the con. I’ll admit I was a bit nervous about putting myself out in the open like that because I’ve managed to keep myself under the radar for so long, but I had such a great time I might consider doing this again in the future. Thanks to everyone who came out!

TOTAL NUMBER FOUND: 43

Here’s the breakdown of where they went! A large majority ended up in California, and we had a few international adopters! Slightly jealous that none of the international adopters picked up my stuff, but such is the nature of the hunt. 🙂

California got a whopping 31 critters, my home state of Texas got 2 critters, and Arizona, Oregon, New York, Washington, Missouri, and Hawaii each got 1 critter that found a new home. 1 was found with an unknown location – I think it might be Washington, D.C., but I’m still waiting on a double-check first! For international adopters, 2 are going to Seoul and 1 is going to Mexicali, Mexico!

Breakdown by artist:

Amy: Amy contributed the most critters, and all 11 of hers were found!

New homes were found in California, Washington, Missouri, Texas, and Korea!

Gina: All 3 of Gina’s critters were found! They came a long way from the Czech Republic, so I was glad that these guys were all accounted for!

All new homes for Gina’s critters were in California!

Tina: Tina pitched in 4 critters for this year’s hunt, and all 4 were found!

New homes were found in California and Arizona! And LOOK! Her BB-8 was found by a hunter who previously found my Captain America! They’re critter roommates! 😀

Windi: Windi’s pokeballs were a last minute addition to the lineup, and all five of them were found!

All of Windi’s pokeballs found new homes in California!

Britt: Britt pitched in 6 critters, and 5 out of the 6 were found! Wonder Woman still hasn’t been checked in, but I’ve received photographic proof that she was taken!

New homes were found in California, New York, and Korea!

Marcy: Marcy threw 9 critters of her own into the pot, and 8 out of the 9 were found! The Skeksis still hasn’t been checked in, but I received a tweet that it was no longer in its hiding spot.

New homes were found in California, Oregon, and Mexico! I also LOVE that her Poe bunny found a home with other literary monsters!

Pam: Pamela brought in 4 critters and 3 out of her 4 were found! I received photographic proof that the fleeb was taken.

New homes were found in California and I think Washington D.C. Still awaiting firm confirmation of Kuchi Kopi’s new home, please correct me if I’m wrong! 🙂

Me: I brought in 7 critters this year, and 4 were found. I’ll admit I’m a bit bummed that 3 of mine went missing, mostly because it broke my personal 100% response rate streak for the last three years, and also because it’s the most that I’ve had go missing since 2014. But I would’ve been more bummed out if there was a higher concentration of missing critters that belonged to any of the guest artists! Four out of seven still ain’t bad, and there’s still hope that people will check in! 🙂

New homes were found in California and Hawaii!

And if you liked some of the work by the guest artists but couldn’t find one out at Comic-Con, many of them have etsy shops and many of them do custom orders! Check them out!

Marcy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/MoonsCreations

Amy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/amyhooper


Britt: https://www.etsy.com/shop/FrazzledEnds


Gina: https://www.etsy.com/shop/marvelousstrings


Windi: https://www.etsy.com/shop/HelloWindi
20187059_10159061436780710_1299531600_o

LESSONS LEARNED

Whew. There was definitely a lot to be learned from dropping so many this year. If I were to collect guest art again I’d have to set limits, but man, I’m still blown away by how much people were willing to give to this little project of mine. When I put out a call to collect guest art to drop, I was expecting maybe one or two pieces from a handful of people, so it never occurred to me put limits of any sort on the submissions. So when I ended up with a flood of pieces to drop off, I had a double “holy shit” moment. In that I was thinking “holy shit, these people are crazy generous and awesome” and “holy shit, how am I going to get all these out in San Diego?!” Turns out in addition to having plenty of people volunteer to contribute critters to the hunt, I had plenty of people volunteer to help me with the drops as well. I didn’t want to take away from anyone’s time at the convention so I tried to refrain from recruiting any more people than I needed to, but I was just as surprised with how enthusiastic everyone was about helping with the drops! Time is such a precious commodity at Comic-Con, so I felt bad taking that away from anyone, but everyone who helped out seemed to have fun looking for a hiding spot and they seemed to have even more fun watching people find the critters! Other people also decided to drops of their own this year, and I had a blast following along with their hunts as well, hoping that every single one of their works were also accounted for. If there’s one thing that I’ve learned this year from my drops, it’s that there’s a lot of good people in the world, and you don’t have to look very far to find them. The number of people who volunteered to contribute their work to the drops, the number of people who offered to help me with the drops, the number of people who decided to do drops of their own this year, all the fantastic people that I’d met throughout the whirlwind five days that was San Diego Comic-Con: you guys rock. Thanks to everyone who joined the hunt, thanks to everyone who helped with the hunt, and dammit, just thanks to everyone for being kind, generous, and all around awesome. Comic-Con is usually a fun geeky time, but this year was a little different in that it gave me a little boost in my faith in people in general. ❤ Thanks for another great year of critter drops, and here's to hoping that I'll be back to do it all over again next year!

Posted in Adoptions, SDCC | 1 Comment

SDCC 2017: The recap!

If last year was an off year for me at SDCC, then this year more than made up for it. A lot of it was due to luck, some of it was due to experience, but most of it was just down to having good quality programming at this year’s con. Here’s the recap!

THE RAMEN

LOL J/K IMMA TALK ABOUT THE RAMEN FIRST. But seriously though. Every year I fly into San Diego, and every year I capitalize on the fantastic ramen that the west coast has to offer. I met up with a kind follower from twitter for a ramen dinner at Menya Ultra Ramen and HOLY HELL. Y’all. I’ve eaten a lot of ramen around San Diego over the years. A lot. And I just found the best goddamn bowl I’ve ever had in the city.

SDCC2017-01865
Everything about it was perfect. Noodles, broth, chashu slices, the marinated egg. Every. Single. Point. I still have a lot of love for Yakyudori Yakitori, but Menya shot straight to the #1 spot on my San Diego ramen list.

THE EXHIBITION HALL

Okay, NOW I’ll talk about the con. 😀 I’ve come to find that the longer I go to San Diego Comic-Con, the less excited I am with the exhibition hall. Nevertheless, it’s still an impressive display for all the big studios and artists to show off their goods and bring in interest!

 

THE PANELS

Hall H. Oh, you tempting, tempting bastard. I’d camped out for Hall H twice in the past and had a great time, but I also decided that twice was enough. I would’ve loved to sit through a Saturday Marvel panel some day, but most of the time the Marvel panel was the only one I was interested in on Saturday lineups. It didn’t seem worth it for me to camp out in line and then spend my whole day in Hall H just for the last panel of the day. Until I saw this year’s Saturday lineup. Holy shit.

Hall H

For the first time in years I seriously considered going for it. I wavered a bit, and then I got a message from a generous follower on twitter who offered to let me join her line group for Hall H. I’d never done the line shifts before (never got a group big enough), but for spending a couple of hours in line to hold the fort I felt like it was an easy time investment vs. camping out the whole day, and if we didn’t end up with wristbands then no big deal, I’ll just enjoy the rest of my Saturday. But guess what? WRISTBAND ACQUIRED. OMG I’M GETTING INTO HALL H ON A SATURDAY.

And the panels were EPIC. The only letdown was the Westworld panel due to extremely poor moderating, but otherwise it was a day packed with seeing awesome sneak peeks, fun Q&A sessions, and I FINALLY GOT TO SEE A MARVEL PANEL.

Bucket list within a bucket list achievement unlocked! If there was a year for me to do a “one time only” Saturday Hall H, this year was the year to do it, as I got to see the likes of stars ranging from fresh faces like the kids from Stranger Things and the casts of all the latest superhero movies, to the timeless movie giants like Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford. Thank you thank you THANK YOU to Amanda & co., I never would’ve made it in without all your help! I can finally mark off “see the Marvel panel” from my SDCC to-do list. NOW I can say I’m done with Hall H. I think. For now. 🙂

THE OFFSITE EVENTS

I keep saying that the offsite events get better and better each year, and this was no exception.

Westworld Experience:

The highlight of SDCC 2017 for me. The Westworld offsite event was hands down one of the best offsite events I’ve attended in my 7 years of going to SDCC. My friends and I got lucky in that we’d heard about this super exclusive event before SDCC even started (thanks to SDCC unofficial blog!) and decided right away that we were going to sign up for this based on blind faith that it was going to be something great. We got in line at 5:30am on the first day before all the hype started rolling out and had no problems getting a spot.

It was seriously one of the most incredible things I’ve experienced at the con. The setups were beautifully done with amazing attention to detail, and the hired performers were so, SO freaking good. Overly polite and robotic, to the point where it was a bit unsettling. You started out in the “lobby” of Westworld where you could browse through actual props and costumes from the show, and then you were escorted down a hall to wait for your assessment. Everything was in pristine condition, and every sign in the hallway was replaced with Westworld signs. There were also subtle easter eggs scattered around, such as a Samurai World door in the hallway, complete with the sound of clanging swords coming from behind it.

Once they were ready, your host would escort you to a room where they performed an assessment on you to determine what kind of hat you would get for your “stay” in Westworld. You’re seated in a dimly lit room for a one-on-one conversation with a host who asks you several questions about yourself. Normally I’m all about recording and taking photos of things like this, but the performer was so good at making the conversation feel real that I actually felt awkward about pulling my camera out. After they help you select a hat, they ask you to take a look in the mirror to make sure everything looks alright, and in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment, the mirror flashes and you’ll see a man in a hazmat suit staring back at you from behind the mirror. Creepy as hell, and the host smiles at you as if nothing is wrong. That’s what made the entire Westworld experience so good…it was so beautifully subtle and (unsettlingly) grounded in reality. It wasn’t an overt “YEEHAW!! COWBOYS ‘N GUNS!” kind of gig, and that’s what made it feel so much more immersive because you honestly felt like a participant and not a spectator. You’re later faced with a terrifying “malfunctioning” host portrayed by an actress who was REALLY good at convulsing and giving a dead-behind-the-eyes stare the whole time, and when she came back “online,” she gave a horrifyingly creepy smile and led us to the Mariposa saloon where you’re met with a courtesan host for drinks.

Again with the attention to detail: for a free event, they could’ve easily given us cheap Koolaid punch served in plastic cups, but instead each drink was a crafted cocktail made to order and all served in quality glassware. The drinks were legitimately delicious, and I actually tried asking for the recipes on twitter afterward!

I tried saying “FREEZE ALL MOTOR FUNCTIONS” to our host, but she gave a coy smile and said “I’m sorry?” and sauntered off. Looks like I didn’t have access to those commands. 😉 And the hat we got? When you google the label on it, it retails for at least $160 a pop. For an almost-lifelong Texan, I’d never owned a cowboy hat until now, let alone a high end one! They seriously spared no expense to replicate this “luxury resort” experience. If you’re a fan of the show and the experience shows up at any other conventions around the country, I’d highly recommend snagging an appointment the first chance you can get.

The Blade Runner Experience:

Also very cool and MOAR FREE BOOZE. Thanks to this one I ended up taking 3 shots of whiskey first thing in the morning. Another really fun immersive experience where you’re taken into a recreation of Los Angeles 2049, with costumed performers interacting with you, whether it’s a prostitute eyeing you up and down or a policeman interrogating you. There was also a VR experience paired with it, and while I usually don’t care for VR sets, the Blade Runner experience had a fantastic setup where you’d be in a car chase scene on your VR set, and when the video was over, you’d take your headset off and OH SNAP LOOK IT’S THE CAR YOU JUST CRASHED. Fantastic way to segue from the VR experience into the real deal. And you got free noodles and whiskey! Another two thumbs up for this offsite experience. I promise the free booze had very little to do with it. 😉

 

THE SWAG

I know I shouldn’t complain about free stuff. It’s FREE. But…BUT…did anyone else feel like this year’s swag grab was underwhelming compared to previous years? I feel like every year there’s usually some piece of swag that will make everyone say “oh wow, where’d you get that?” Whether it’s a cool hat, a nifty keychain, or a spiffy water bottle, there’s usually SOMETHING that’s somewhat of a coveted item when it comes to swag. The only one I could think of this year was the the Stranger Things hats, and even then you had to wait in line for hours to get one of those, if they had any left to begin with. Previous years brought on headphones, portable chargers, collapsible cups, berets, all sorts of fun stuff. This year it seemed like it was all posters and flyers. But hey, free stuff is free stuff, so who am I to complain? 🙂 My swag haul gets smaller every year, but I like to think I got some decent stuff this time around.

SDCC2017-02432

Other fun stuff:

This was a fantastic year for me, thanks to so many other fun things that happened around the convention:

  • Conan O’Brien taping: Conan O’Brien tapings have now reached Hall H levels of hype, but if you’re lucky enough to snag a ticket online, it’s still a super fun thing to do outside of the convention, and you get to walk away with one of the most coveted pieces of swag of the con! I went to Thursday afternoon’s Kingsman cast taping, and I got the one Conan Pop that I really wanted, the Jedi Conan!
  • Celeb sighting: Adam Savage from Mythbusters! I saw Adam Savage from Mythbusters on Wednesday afternoon, but it wasn’t just any celebrity sighting. I was having some beers at Mission Brewing, when I heard a ridiculously loud roaring outside. It’s entirely too loud to be an airplane flying overhead, and everyone looks outside to see what’s happening. You guys, there was a dude zooming down the street on a FUCKING JET PACK. With Adam Savage in tow! I may not have had the “omg I ran into Gal Gadot and got a selfie with her!” story this year, but dammit, I GOT TO SEE A MAN FLY ON A JET PACK. I’d say that’s pretty epic. 🙂 Official tested.com video footage of the jet pack can be seen here!
    Jetpack man
  • Breathalyzer?? Okay, this was just plain fun. On the way back from the Westworld experience there was a table set up on the sidewalk by the San Diego Police Department offering free consequence-free breathalyzers to raise awareness about drunk driving. I just downed 3 drinks at the Westworld experience and I’d never blown a breathalyzer before (and I hope I’ll never have to), so I figured this would be a fun way to see how it’d go. Three drinks down and I was still under the legal limit! W00t! Not sure if I could still say the same later in the night, it was fun seeing how everyone else’s breathalyzers compared too. 🙂 Bottom line: don’t drink and drive. You don’t have to be drunk to be over the legal limit, play it safe, for yourself and for others on the road.

And of course, the drops! I’m currently drafting up a separate post for the drops, but for having the largest undertaking of drops that I’ve ever done, I’d say it went pretty damn well! I flew into San Diego with a duffle bag of 44 critters, which expanded to 49 critters with a last minute addition of 5 more pieces, and out of all that only 6 were missing! Woohoo! More on that to come, but otherwise while I’d say it’s never a bad time at San Diego Comic-Con, SDCC 2017 was one of my best years yet. Here’s to hoping I’ll be back again next year!

Posted in SDCC | 1 Comment

FINAL SDCC CRITTER LINEUP: 2017 Edition

Phew. I’m still slightly bummed that I wasn’t able to make as many critters as I wanted to this year due to a hand injury, but I’ve got seven little buddies of my own to take with me to Comic-Con next week! Here’s the final roundup of adoptees for San Diego Comic-Con 2017!

Classic Batman & Penguin:

With Adam West’s passing, this inadvertently turned into a tribute piece, but otherwise they’ll be wreaking plenty of campy havoc at SDCC!

Deadpool+Unicorn friend

The thing I love about Deadpool is that he can be accessorized with just about ANYTHING. This one is based on a NSFW unicorn gag from the movie!

Doctor Strange

Will he be at San Diego Comic-Con to bargain? For a few exclusives, maybe. 🙂

Superman

Superman Batman Mother's Day-4155 copy

Superman has been a “regular” for my drops since I started in 2011, and this will be his seventh year getting stranded in San Diego!

Yondu Poppins

“I’M MARY POPPINS, Y’ALL!” One of the most popular lines from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, I loved how it also took into account that in the alien universe, Yondu has no clue that Mary is a female name when he asks “is he cool?” The worst nanny ever will be dropping into SDCC next week!

Wonder Woman

The final addition to my lineup this year! After I injured my hand making Yondu Poppins, I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to finish this one up before Comic-Con rolled around, but here she is!

Can’t find a critter in the wild? There’s also going to be 3 critters available as raffle prizes if you donate blood at the Comic-Con Blood Drive!

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!!

Since I wasn’t able to make as many critters as I wanted this year, I made an open call for guest art. And guys. Artists from around the country and as far as the Czech Republic sent me THIRTY-SEVEN pieces for me to drop. Check them all out HERE!

DEpKaW5UAAAoFpo

THERE’S SO MANY.

And if you haven’t done so already, read the 2017 critterdrop guidelines. It’ll help.

That brings me to a total of 44 critters to drop. Holy crap. HO-LY CRAP. I’ll admit I’m nervous about dropping so many because I feel a certain responsibility to make sure all the guest critters find new homes. It’s one thing if some of my own work goes missing, but I’d feel terrible if someone else’s hard work went unanswered. I’ve recruited help with the drops, but it’s still a lot. The drops have generally been a one-woman show all these years, so 1) taking in work from others, and 2) recruiting people to help with the drops are both new processes to me this year. Hopefully all will go well, fingers crossed for a 100% response rate on all 44 pieces this year!

If you want to join my hunt for crocheted critters at San Diego Comic-Con this year, follow me on either twitter or facebook to track my drops! I just ask for two things if you find a critter: 1) Send me a photo of your new friend! 2) Let me know where the little buddy’s new home will be! Good luck, and happy hunting!

The Geeky Hooker

Posted in Adoptions, SDCC | 1 Comment

Some kind of wonderful

I DID IT! I managed to squeeze out one more critter to drop at Comic-Con next week! This was a project that was started long ago, but then I injured my hand and had to put this on delay. I drafted up this post over a month ago, so it might seem a bit dated, since the internet moves at the speed of light. But dammit, it’s done! One last critter, ready to go for SDCC!

Wonder Woman. What a HUGE sigh of relief. I was so, SO worried about this movie. DC hasn’t had a good track record lately with their films, and the stakes for Wonder Woman were incredibly high. It’s the first major female-led comic book movie in a long time, and it’s the first major Wonder Woman production since the 70’s. It’s literally been DECADES since Wonder Woman has been at the forefront, and if this movie failed, it was going to be a huge letdown at the box office and an even bigger letdown socially speaking. This movie HAD to do well because of everything it stood for in terms of doing the character justice, and for representation of women in a genre that is so severely lacking in substantial female representation.

Wonder Woman-4437

And it was wonderful. It was so incredibly good, and director Patty Jenkins got so many things right with this one. There was no stupid invisible plane. But there was plenty of strength, charm, and lots of heart.

I had doubts about Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman when I first heard about her appearing in Dawn of Justice. I thought she seemed too…delicate? Strikingly beautiful, but I felt like Wonder Woman should’ve been played by someone who had more of a commanding presence. I was so wrong. So, SO wrong. Holy shit she knocked it out of the park. Gal Gadot made Wonder Woman the well-rounded character she deserved to be. She was compassionate, inquisitive, intelligent, strong-willed, and powerful all at once. Everything you’d want in a major female protagonist. She’s the kind of heroine I wish I had as a kid. Young girls should absolutely see this one, because Wonder Woman was portrayed as exactly the kind of heroine that they could all look up to.

WW detail-4447

As for my thoughts on the movie: (SPOILERS INCOMING!!) – ok, so I wrote this over a month ago, most people have seen the movie by now, but still, SPOILERS AHEAD.
 
 
 
 
AHOY, THERE BE SPOILERS!
 
 
 
 

  • Holy crap Ares was real! I was convinced that Diana was going to go through battle and then find out that the story of Ares was more of a metaphor for the dark side of the hearts of mankind, and that she would only be able to bring peace if she could subdue that darkness, blah blah blah. Nope. Turns out he was an actual dude.
  • I expected a FUS RO DAH! out of Ares. I played too much Skyrim.
  • Having a random supernatural being show up on planet Earth out of nowhere would normally peeve me to no end, but in this case it worked. If Diana was able to take on an entire battlefront almost single-handedly then it wouldn’t make sense for the big baddie in the end to be just a juiced up dude in a uniform. It had to be something far beyond human limits, and Ares was the perfect way to bring in a final villain that would actually be a threat to her.
  • Robin Wright as Anthiope. She. Looks. INCREDIBLE. That’s some serious gym inspiration right there. This is such a superficial thing, but I felt like Gal Gadot was too skinny to be Wonder Woman when she was first announced for the role, and I still think she looked too skinny. Robin Wright’s physique seemed much better suited for the role of Wonder Woman. Then I found out that Gal Gadot packed on SEVENTEEN POUNDS of muscle over the course of 6 months. I mean, at that point homegirl is just genetically blessed. Damn.
  • They never once called Diana “Wonder Woman.” And I loved it. Kind of like how Selina Kyle was never referred to as “Catwoman” in The Dark Knight Rises.

 
 
 
 
END SPOILERS.

So that’s one last critter for me to take with me to Comic-Con! That brings my count to a total of seven critters this year. Far less than previous years, but I’ve got more than enough guest art to make up for it this year! THIRTY-SEVEN pieces to be exact, bringing it to a total of 44 pieces for me to drop this year. THERE’S SO MUCH. It’s overwhelming and awesome at the same time. If you haven’t done so already, read this year’s drop guidelines. Otherwise to everyone who’ll be joining the hunt next week: have fun, and happy hunting!

Wonder Woman-4452 copy

If you want to join my hunt for crocheted critters at San Diego Comic-Con this year, follow me on either twitter or facebook to track my drops! I just ask for two things if you find a critter: 1) Send me a photo of your new friend! 2) Let me know where the little buddy’s new home will be! Good luck, and happy hunting!

The Geeky Hooker

Posted in Adoptions, SDCC | 4 Comments