Saturday, February 11

Strike Three

The Brotherhood is back for the finale.

There's been quite a bit of flack being thrown at X-Men 3: The Last Stand. Aside from the initial hubbub that ensued when former X-director Brian Singer left the set to work with DC's Superman Returns, there has since been great criticism of the third movie's script. SPOILER WARNING!
The third movie will supposedly be about a new serum that 'de-mutates' mutants, stripping them of their powers. This is apparently produced from the body of a mutant called Leech. This serum is the focal point of the conflict in X3, along with the resurgence of Magneto (Ian McKellen) and a much larger, more powerful Brotherhood of Mutants. Standing against them as well as being continually hounded by the government are the embattled X-men. What has caused uproar among fans is the supposed early death of Cyclops (James Marsden), a victim of the uncontrollable powers of a newly-returned and seemingly resurrected Jean Grey (Famke Janssen), who eventually does an Anakin and turns to the Dark Side. Aside from Scott Summers, at least two other big name characters will supposedly bite the dust in X3. Hmmm.

Anyway, there are new members to the team that had only cameos in the previous installment, such as Colossus, Shadowcat and Jubilee. New to the films and making their debut are Angel and Beast (the latter played by Frasier's Kelsey Grammer).

Still, I'm waiting for this finale with excitement, despite the early negativity. Hopefully the final product will at least have action aplenty, including some mammoth scenes of carnage from Magneto (one of the films' best points). We're expecting X3 to hit in May 2006.
Issues and more Issues

Anyway, on the side, I've been pencilling pages for the 2nd issue of Kunoichi Boy. This all-new story (which wasn't dredged up from the foiled release in Questor Mangamania) has our heroes Jin and Mikoto sauntering into a quiet town... perhaps too quiet for a town. Well, there's something sinister going on in this sleepy little hamlet, and it's gonna lead to quite a bit of action before long. I'm intending for quite a bit of ninja girl-on-ninja girl/boy fighting in this one, so it should be pretty fun. I'll see about getting this issue finished and out on the Comic Quest rack in a month or two.

Meanwhile, you can check out the latest issue of Budjette Tan's supernatural series, Trese! The third issue is now available at Comic Quest, and so far I've heard good things. Budj is getting better and better with his dark heroine, and the art by Ka-Jo is as cool as always. I'll be sure to pick this up when I get the chance, and I think you guys should too!

It's past midnight and we're still in the grind, shooting the TV commercial. Circumstances forced us to leave the southern mall and continue the rest of our shots in the confines of a studio. Unfortunately, the act of uprooting and setting up again ate up a lot of time. So now, it's early in the morning of the weekend and I'm still on the job. Should be done in an hour or two though... which should mean I'll be in bed by about 3AM or so. Gosh, I need some shut-eye. Oh well. It's a living.

Friday, February 10

Shooting South

The past two days have been spent on a TV commercial shoot down south, in the very nice Alabang Town Center. I seldom ever come this far south, which is a shame since the sprawling mall/shopping complex is really cool... literally. There are so many big trees around the plaza area, it reminds me of the ol' college campus of UP. It's a nice place to relax at as well as shop and dine.
It was fun to just walk around and window-shop during lulls in the shoot, and a I ended up buying a couple of magazines to take home. Anyway, it's been a smooth, relatively problem-free shooting, thanks to a pretty great production house (which kept us well-fed and served throughout, even having our own air-conditioned tent! Yipee!). We'll be wrapping up the thing this evening and I'm looking forward to a restful weekend. Fun work is still work. I'm pooped.

Thursday, February 9

Feeling Nutty

On a whim, I had a very different kind of dinner the other day. I went to NY Diner (or something like that)at the Food Court in Cubao's Gateway Mall and tried their Bacon-Banana Peanut Butter and Jelly Twister sandwich. This is very similar if not the same sandwich that was supposedly THE favorite of 'The King' himself, Elvis Presley (who reputedly ate several sandwiches in single sittings).

How does a bacon-banana-peanut butter and jelly sandwich taste like? Actually... NOT BAD. Weird, definitely weird... and I really felt pretty queasy eating something that seemed to be a cross between a savoury and sweet concoction. But the bacon was there, the banana sort of quelled the otherwise very sweet peanut butter and the jelly was just... there. All in all, I felt strange eating it, but a day later I am actually not averse to repeating the experience. No, I'm not craving it, but I'm quite ready to eat it again. Though probably next time as a snack, and not dinner.

Oh, and I probably won't be eating this too often... knowing how Elvis ended up. Heh.

Wednesday, February 8


After weeks and weeks of searching, I finally bagged a copy of Munich, the latest Steven Spielberg flick. As I've maybe written about before, it's a real-life cloak and dagger film about the events initiated by the murder of Israeli athletes by Black September during the 1972 Munich Olympics. Particularly, it centers on the five MOSSAD agents sent to assassinate the ones perceived to be responsible for the crimes, and on the personal cost that service to God and country takes on the actual men who pull the triggers or press the detonator switches. It's supposed to be pretty violent and holds little back, doing for espionage films what Saving Private Ryan did for war movies. Been waiting for this for some time, and I'm gonna watch it asap. The film stars Eric Bana (Hulk, Troy), David Craig (Tomb Raider, the next James Bond), Goeffrey Rush (Pirates of the Carribbean, Mystery Men), Ciaran Hinds (Rome) and more.

Also got copies of Zathura (Jumanji in space!), Doom (why not...) and King Kong, which I amazingly have NOT yet seen, Peter Jackson epic regardless.

Nice stuff to watch. Hopefully I'll have time to see them all soon, despite a big shoot coming on me in the next couple of days. We'll see.
Bogus Bento

Recently I saw the new KFC commercial about the new KFC Chicken Tempura meal (ninja-like waiter serves the dish shuriken-style), and when I got the chance to dine at the prime chicken place, I was set to order it. However, when I looked at the menu, my eye was caught by the new 'bento meal', which seemed to have the chicken tempura and a couple of extras.

Well, I ordered it and lo... I got this styrofoam package containing a meager serving of spaghetti (about three forkfuls), 2 pieces of chicken tempura, rice and a brownie.

This is probably the most un-bento bento I have ever seen. Well, the food wasn't bad but presentation-wise it was pretty crappy. It looked like those handout meals you give volunteers or extras on a TV shoot. Bleh. Just goes to show you that you should never go to a chicken place when you're in the mood for Japanese. I think.

Monday, February 6

English Dud

I remember months and months ago, I was dreaming of watching Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, devouring every trailer and snippet of information. Then, some time later, the Japanese DVD came out, and the movie became available online. Later, it became available on VCD and DVD locally.

These days, I either have the whole movie or the best scenes loaded on my mobile for anytime viewing. Yeah, I am a softie and sentimental goof, and I just love the world of Midgar.

And STILL the darn english dub isn't out yet.

Yeah, it's amazing but the US still doesn't have their version of Advent Children out yet. Delay upon delay has moved the release date back again and again. Ads for the DVD and UMD have come out in recent magazines, but still the movie isn't out yet.

The latest announcement has it coming out 'before 2006 ends'.

They say this is due to the development of supplemental materials (extras) for the release. Darn, those had better be damn good extras. Anyway, I'm sure the disc will be a hit on release regardless of the fact that, oh, everyone has seen the film already by now. Anyway, I'll be getting it as well, but man oh man, is it late or what? Sigh.

Sunday, February 5


I finally made the jump from using Windows Me to Windows XP last night. Of course, being the PC noob that I am, I needed to bother my brother just hours before he had to rush off to the airport to get the stuff started. Afterwards though, I had to find my way through the rest of the installation myself. Still, after a bit I finally got the PC working on XP and already it's working far better than before. I had delayed going XP for the longest time since my old Video Capture Card only worked on Me... but with my new AV700 doing all my video capturing, that was no longer a reason.
My only glitch now is the weird way that my 80-Gig Hard Drive suddenly turned into a miniscule and only-barely adequate 35-Gig one. I'll probably upgrade to a bigger HD and have a nice new case for my PC (which sports a new Pentium 4 chip) very soon. Gotta start making the plans on that.
Leaving on a Jet Plane

Early this morning, at about 4:00 AM, I got up after about an hour's worth of shut-eye to join the trip to the airport to see off my brother and his two little girls.

In two vehicles we went convoy style, a van with most of the family and 3 balikbayan boxes, and a car with my bro and his friends. The two girls, Pam and Pat, sat with two of their cousins in the rear seat of the van, while me, my parents and my sister and her husband sat up front before them. We engaged each other in various conversation, but it was impossible to ignore the girls in the back seats as they alternately laughed and cried. The cousins were naturally very close and I guess is was finally dawning on them that it would be a while... a long, long while, before they conceivably would meet again. My mom tried to cheer them up continually with jokes that if she won the Lotto, we'd be there to visit in the US in a second.

We got to the airport and it was a blur of motion then. We unloaded the boxes, and quick farewells were given. Me and my brother hugged and he told me to take care of our parents. The girls were almost speechless and could only half-smile and hold back the tears as they went off into the terminal and on to the future.

The long drive home was brightened only slightly by a breakfast from McDonald's. But of course, all of us had our own internal thoughts.

I didn't shed any tears, but I felt the leaving inside. I'll miss having the kids around and pestering me (a bit). I'll miss having my brother around and being a kindred fan of tech, toys, games and dvds. In a way, we were always distant, but in many other ways we were so very close.

Of course, being far away need not mean out of touch. I'm going to have to keep busy soon, fixing up my mom with the PC my brother left behind, getting a broadband internet connection so we can keep the lines of communication close. Darn, I feel like I'm in one of those telecom ads. Well, it's only now that I finally identify with those maudlin commercials.

By now, they're probably halfway there. Good luck and God Bless, Jun, Pam and Patricia. I'll see you all again someday.