Tag Archives: Star Wars

Top 5 Movies I’ve Seen in the First Half of 2015 – RANKED!

As we head into the second half of the year I thought this would be a good time to rate the 5 movies I’ve seen at the theater so far this year.

Starting off with number five:


5) Cinderella

Fresh while still paying respect to the original Disney animated version, this film was a lovely adaptation of the classic story. This was the first movie I saw this year, but there was still more awesome movie magic to come.


4) Inside Out

This movie has all the great things we’ve come to expect with a Pixar film: endearing characters, incredible animation and feelings in a quite literal way. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but I felt like there was something missing and as a result I didn’t connect as much as I have with past Pixar movies.


3) Avengers: Age of Ultron

This darker, bleaker chapter of Avengers was a fantastic summer blockbuster! It gave us more of what we love – beloved superheroes, non-stop action, state-of-the-art effects and super cool artificial intelligence. Bring on Civil War! Continue reading Top 5 Movies I’ve Seen in the First Half of 2015 – RANKED!


Star Wars Rebels: What I’d Like to See in Season 2 (and Beyond)!

Happy Star Wars Rebels Day! Like I mentioned in my earlier post, I am very excited for season 2 of Star Wars Rebels. In honor of the season 2 premiere, I present to you: what I’d like to see in season 2 and beyond.

Obviously Ahsoka!

I’m thrilled to have Ahsoka back, but I have so many questions.

What has she been doing since she left the Jedi Order?

What specific things has she seen to prompt her to join the Alliance?

Does she have contact with Leia and does she tell her stories about Padme?

What does she know about Darth Vader?

Will her noticeably different head tail and face markings be explained within the story or are they just a difference in animation?

The Rebel Alliance

Of course the Ghost crew is our main focus with this series, but I hope we see more of “The fire across the galaxy”. It will be cool to see the network of rebels grow and work together to defeat the empire. Also, it will be interesting to see if any elements of this story work their way into the upcoming Rogue One.

Children of the Force

In season 1 we saw Darth Vader mention “The Children of the Force”. I am curious to find out more about this intriguing phrase. Are there more children of the force out there? Will they be trained in the dark ways of the force and used as a weapon against the rebels?

The Lasat Extermination

It was heartbreaking to find out about the destruction of Zeb’s people and planet by the Empire. I would like to learn more about the circumstances leading up to these terrible events.


Sabine is quite the enigma. We know very little about her background and why she hates The Empire so much. Also, how does a 16 year old have such extensive training with explosives? And will she betray the rebels at some point?

More Bridges Between the Prequel Trilogy and the Original Trilogy

We saw some familiar faces in season one, but I still would like to see more. I think having Leia is a must! We’ve already seen Bail, and by this point in time Leia is no doubt aiding her father in the Rebellion and representing Alderaan in the Senate.

In addition to Rex and the others clones we’ve seen in the preview I’d like to see Obi-Wan, Darth Maul, Mon Mothma, and Biggs.

So enjoy the premiere tonight, Star Wars fans! A new season brings so many possibilities and I can’t wait to see what’s in store!

Phoenix Comicon 2015

This past weekend nerds converged in Phoenix to the premier pop culture event of the Southwest – Phoenix Comicon. This con was four days of pure, nerdy bliss. Mind-blowing cosplay, top-notch guests, a massive show room floor and impeccable organization made it one of the best cons I have ever attended!


I was happy to have a more interactive role this time with my media pass for the Who Wars podcast. I was fortunate enough to be there every single day and documented it all in the form of notes, audio, video and photographs.

Here’s my recap:

Day 1 (Thursday)

I picked up my media pass and headed to a panel about the darkest episodes of Doctor Who. I was surprised how full it was, probably about 90-95% capacity. It was a great panel that gave us a top 10 list of the darkest episodes complete with clips from classic Who and Nu-Who. Can you guess which episode was number one?

Next it was off to my interview with Chuck Wendig. He’s the author of the upcoming Star Wars novel, Aftermath, which takes place right after Return of the Jedi. This was my first scheduled interview that I’ve done like this so I was a bit nervous. But, Chuck was super nice and told me everything he possibly could about the book without being taken out by Lucasfilm.


After that, I got the last part of a panel about Star Wars conspiracies. Here they discussed such pressing topics as: Are Yoda and Palpatine besties? Did Palpatine kill Padme? And more!

Day 2 (Friday)

I started off day 2 with an interview with writer Paul Cornell. He’s written a lot of things for Doctor Who, so of course we wanted him on Who Wars! He is such a personable and friendly guy, really a pleasure chatting with him!

After that, I wandered to show room floor for a bit. It seemed even bigger this year and there was literally something for everyone! Some of my favorite purchases this year included a Tomorrowland pin, a Mockingjay pin, a TARDIS bow tie, a plush R2-D2 ball, and a cute R2-D2 knit hat!


Next up was my interview with Hi-Fi colorist Brian Miller. He’s done Star Wars and Doctor Who art as well as colored some of the Titan Doctor Who comics we review on Who Wars. His partner in crime, artist Joe Corroney, was sitting right there so I also did an impromptu interview with him.

Next I headed up the Hall of Heroes. This is the area where all the actors and costuming groups were. I checked out the TARDIS and the Star Wars area. Then I went over to where the actors were to see who I could find. I saw Tom Kane (the voice of Yoda on Star Wars: The Clone Wars) and in a moment of bravery, determination and pure hope I went up to him and asked him for an interview. He graciously agreed and invited me to sit at his table for about a half hour and answered my questions in between signing and doing voices for fans. And we also did a “Yoda-off”, so that was epic.


Mr. Kane is so incredibly nice and I am so happy to have the privilege of talking to him!


After that, I headed to the Jason Isaacs panel. It was a pretty good panel, but he didn’t talk much about the Inquisitor or Star Wars Rebels. I would have loved to get an interview with him, but it sadly didn’t happen.

Tom Kane had a spotlight panel after that where he might have hinted that Jabba could be making an appearance in Star Wars Rebels…

I did a bit more wandering and people watching and that was it for day two.

Day 3 (Saturday)

Suited in my Aphra costume, I started day three with a Star Wars Rebels panel that recapped season 1. That was good for me because I had already basically forgotten everything that happened in season one.

Next was the Chuck Wendig spotlight panel. Again, he couldn’t really talk much Star Wars, but it was cool to hear his stories and advice he had for people.

My next choice was the ultimate Who Wars decision. There was a panel about the Force and one about the Master. Ultimately I went with the one about the Master because 1) I had only been to one Doctor Who panel so far, and 2) I haven’t watched much classic Who and thought I might learn a thing or two. And I certainly did. It was very informative and even made me want to go check out some of the classic episodes with the Master.

Katee Sackhoff was the next panel. Although it was interesting to hear her talk about her time on Battlestar Galactica, I was hoping she would say something about Clone Wars. But she didn’t. I also would have LOVED to interview her, but it just wasn’t feasible.


 Day 4 (Sunday)

Day four was so much fun! I started with a panel about having an animation career that featured animation veterans Jason Spisak, Adam Beechen, Shannon Eric Denton and Heath Corson. There were so many people interested in an animation career and the guys gave such awesome advice!


Then afterwards I interviewed voice actor, Jason Spisak, who did the voice of Lux in the Clone Wars. He was very funny, genuine and awesome.


Next up was Star Wars Family Feud. This was a super fun, high energy recreation of the game show but with Star Wars based questions. It was Rebels vs. The Empire and everyone had a lot of fun! Right after this I was able to witness the Running of the Willrow Hoods! It was a bit smaller than the one at Star Wars Celebration, but still amazing! Indeed, ice cream is ALWAYS canon!


After some final show room floor gazing I left Phoenix Comicon 2015 grinning from ear to ear after the amazing weekend I had. Thankfully I don’t have to wait a full year for the next event, Phoenix Comicon Fan Fest is in December!

In the meantime don’t forget to check out my photos on Flickr and my coverage of Phoenix Comicon on Who Wars!

BB-8 Painting

One of the things I was able to accomplish over the weekend was to paint! This is exciting because 1) I haven’t gotten my paints out in quite some time and 2) I painted BB-8! (On the off-chance that you don’t know who this BB-8 I speak of is, he’s one of the droids in the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens.)

I thought it would be interesting to document this in its various stages.

Stage One – Rough Sketch

Stage Two – Basic Color Blocking

Stage Three: Fine Tuning and Details

So, there you have it! I’m pretty pleased with the results and think I might have to do a droid series with R2-D2 and Chopper!

Fandom Origin Story: Star Wars

I have many varied interests and room in my heart for many fandoms. I love them all for different reasons, but I don’t think I could possible love any of them more than I love Star Wars.

Star Wars is linked to my past in a way that is deeply personal and ingrained into my very being. Let me explain.

Being the youngest in my family I was always cognizant of Star Wars. I knew who the characters were and that Darth Vader was Luke’s father. My siblings and cousins were always talking about and playing “Star Wars”. But since I was born after the original movies were released and our family never owned the vhs tapes I had never seen it.

Somewhere around 1996 I heard that the movies were being re-released in 1997. My friend Kandra’s older sister, Sanya, had the VHS tapes and was watching the originals to compare them to the special editions that were coming out soon. I happened to walk in on the Empire Strikes Back scene here Han is using the lightsaber to cut open the Taun Taun to keep Luke warm. Immediately I was awed and disgusted but thrilled at the prospect of seeing these movies in their entirety.

I made a conscious decision to not watch the rest of the movie at this point and to experience each of the original trilogy movies on the big screen when they were released in 1997. So that’s what I did. Me, Kandra and Sanya went to each of them as they were released and the Star Wars obsession inside me grew and grew.

By this point I couldn’t get enough. The only problem was I still didn’t have the VHS tapes to watch them repeatedly. Thankfully I was able to borrow the tapes and I would literally watch the movies over and over again.

To me it was more than just watching some movies that were already 15-20 years old. It was a dark time for my family. My parents were recently divorced and I was basically left fatherless. Being a pre-teen can be a sad, lonely and confusing time for anyone, but it was especially for me with these unique circumstances. But Star Wars gave me an outlet. A world where I could escape and forget about my problems. Star Wars also came to me at an integral time in my life when I was starting to develop my own views and opinions. The themes of good vs. evil, love and redemption really resonated with me and helped to form many of my personal views that I have to this day.

After discovering the awesomeness that is Star Wars imagine my surprise and delight when I learned of the prequel trilogy soon to come! As it got closer to 1999 my love for Star Wars grew stronger still. The new characters, places, and ships etc were intoxicating. And it even fueled my creativity…I would spend hours designing dresses for Amidala, drawing little Ani and even creating new characters such as Darth Tenacious – Darth Maul’s sister who wanted revenge.

The next 6 years or so were filled with many happy days of midnight showings, fan speculation and collecting. In 2005 when Revenge of the Sith came out I remember crying at the end in part to the emotional impact of the film, but mostly because I thought this would be the last new Star Wars movie I’d ever see in the theater. I’ve never been happier to be wrong.

When I learned of the Disney acquisition in 2012 my heart swelled. The future of Star Wars was bright once again. As I eagerly anticipate the release of The Force Awakens, as well as the plethora of other movies we have in store, I can’t help but feel like a kid again. Waiting for that universe to envelope me, to amaze me and to transport me to that galaxy far, far away.