Friday, September 22, 2017

So, you know that scheduled review?

As it turns out, I can't find the notes I assembled for my Batman Returns review. Or the G.I. Joe stuff.

Instead of scrambling to get them around, I'll be taking this time to finish up the stuff I've been preparing for October.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Review: Goosebumps "Stay Out of the Basement"

I can't believe I forgot to post this after my episode Recaps. Whoops.

It's been so long, I've nearly forgotten what part of the house I shouldn't go into.

...It's the bathroom, right? Pretty sure it's the bathroom.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Recap: Gravity Falls "Little Dipper"

Today, Lil' Gideon returns to enact his tewwible widdle wevenge against a man who believes that owning ten guns will keep away maniacs with ladders.

Truly, this will require strategy worthy of praise from Sun Tzu himself.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

September 2017 Announcements

Going to be a scaled-back month. My main goal is to post the things I've been meaning to post. The GI Joe Intro, the Batman Returns review, etc.

Happy Labor Day weekend!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Review: Heroes "Genesis"

Before I can review this episode, I have a confession to make. When I sat down to work on this, it had been at least a decade since I'd watched the show. As such, I realized something: I don't love this show as much as I once did. And the reason why is present in the very first episode.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Recap: Heroes: Chapter One: "Genesis" Part 2

So far in the series premiere of Heroes, one person is immortal, one person is a clockstopper, and everybody else is still figuring things out.

Some people are just late bloomers. It's fine.

Recap: Heroes: Chapter One: "Genesis" Part 1

Happy Eclipse, everybody!

What better way to celebrate the moon's journey between the Earth and the sun than with the TV show that milked that particular celestial phenomenon for all it's worth?

Besides, 2006 was a different time. Now that television has decided the time is right to bring us Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, Inhumans, all that Netflix Marvel stuff, and however many X-Men-related TV shows Fox is doing, I think it might be fun to examine a period in history when the only way a superhero show could be taken seriously is if it didn't actually feature recognizable superheroes.

The pre-Iron Man/The Dark Knight days truly were a strange time to be a superhero fan.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Review: The Batman "The Big Chill"

You know, this episode's title will later get two callbacks with "The Big Heat" and "The Big Dummy." So let's see what previous episodes would look like with similar titles!

"The Bat in the Belfry"
"The Big Joke"

"Call of the Cobblepot"
"The Big Jerk"

"Traction"
"The Big Guy"

"The Man Who Would Be Bat"
"The Big Bat"

I think the third one's particularly on-the-nose, so perhaps it's for the best they didn't go with that title.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Recap: The Batman: "The Big Chill"

Batman: The Animated Series = Zig

The Batman = Zag

I keep saying this, I know, but I think it bears repeating here. This episode was inevitably going to be one of The Batman's biggest challenges. To be sure, reinventing the Joker was certainly going to be difficult after Mark Hamill's legendary run, but Batman: TAS reinvented Mr. Freeze in such a way that changed the way his comic portrayal was handled forever.

Mr. Freeze was a joke villain before Paul Dini and Bruce Timm got ahold of him.

A nobody.

A C-lister.

He was a one-dimensional gimmick villain who was largely abandoned after the Silver Age. So much so that before B:TAS, he once showed up as a resident of Comic Book Limbo, where all the forgotten characters disappear to; a strange realm filled with such residents as the Red Bee, the Boy Billionaires, and the Space Canine Patrol Agents.

His spot in Limbo was probably taken by Walker Gabriel.
If you just thought “Who?” then you’ve illustrated my point.
So today, The Batman has two choices
  1. Imitate Batman: The Animated Series and hope that the new Mr. Freeze holds up.
  2. Go in a direction other than the wildly-successful B:TAS did… and hope that the new Mr. Freeze holds up.
So let's see how Choice B worked out for them.

Also to be referred to as Operation: Zag.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Internet/Phone Update

After about a week, it has returned, better than ever. We're hooked up to some new cables that should be more reliable.

But due to reason of visiting relatives, posts will resume the 14th, with a special solar eclipse post on the 21st.

It's good to be able to use Google again.

Friday, July 28, 2017

A Haiku

No internet/phone
It's a provider outage
Maybe post Monday?

Monday, July 24, 2017

Recap: "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra" Part 3: Land and Air... and Sea

You might be wondering why I haven't complained about or even really commented too much on the Joes being an international team, rather than "Real American Heroes." Well, that's because the G.I. Joe toys became global peacekeepers from all across the globe when the franchise was rebooted into the '80s cartoon version. Action Force: International Heroes.

And prior to that, old school G.I. Joes were known as "Action Man" across the pond.


Sorry if I shattered any illusions.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

On Nurse Duty

I hate to go on full hiatus again... so I won't.

I was planning on taking this next week off anyway, so I'm moving up this break and extending it to two weeks.

As the title of this post alludes, I'm looking after a family member as they recover from minor surgery. They're absolutely fine, it's just hard to do certain things for yourself when the Doctor says you have to keep your face pointed at the ground for fifty minutes out of every hour for ten days.

So there I'll be, buying groceries, cooking, et cetera.

During this time, I will also be working on unfinished business in the form of unposted reviews, and the G.I. Joe Intro I forgot to schedule. Whoops.

Normal posts resume the 24th. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Recap: "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra" Part 2: Batteries Not Included

And now it's July 5th. The party's over.

Like going back to work at the office the day after your 21st birthday, America has wrapped up the festivities as both it and the rest of the world try to sift through the tricky, often sticky, mess that is the current state of global affairs.

I mean, what, North Korea's got missiles and heartburn meds might lead to death? Yeesh.

That's why I'm glad to be returning to a fictional world where heroes and villains are clearly defined, Americans all have square jaws, and all the world's problems can be solved by a small band of heroes!

Which actually describes a lot of the things I cover, actually.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Recap: "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra" Part 1: Collect Them All!

Today is July 4th. This is the day we as a nation come together to honor the ideals our country stands for.

 “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights; that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

And since July 4th is usually celebrated by watching stuff blow up, it only seems right to talk about a movie where a lot stuff blows up in the name of America.

It was either this or Team America: World Police. I picked the one that isn't self-aware parody.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Site News: July, 2017

Every summer, like clockwork, my internet seems to go out when the first set of high winds stop by.

Hopefully, it'll be back Monday. Until then, I'm limited by what I can do with my phone. And what I can do is a monthly update.

At least, I can type this using my phone's note program until my cell phone service decides to work.

This'll be the last regular monthly update, since all I usually do is say "Business as usual" before some unforeseen complication changes my plans.

To combat this, I'll regularly be taking time off every month to give myself a bit of a safety net for things like this. I'll be taking my first break the week after the Fourth. The week OF the Fourth, however, I'll be covering a patriotic film, as per usual.

See you then!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Recap: Goosebumps "Stay Out of the Basement Part 2"

Previously on Goosebumps, an unemployed dad started hanging out in the basement and making his family worry about him and the odd plants he's growing down there.

Just like "The Haunted Mask," if you take away the supernatural elements, you've got a recipe for drama.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Review: Doctor Who "The Gunfighters"

Well, pardners, y'all should feel free as the proverbial bird to disagree with m'opinion. If'n any o' y'all....

Sorry. Got a little too into the spirit of things.

Feel free to disagree with me. You know. In general.

If you like something I don't, or if you hate something I love, I cannot tell you you're wrong. We are each entitled to our own opinions.  Sure, I might end a Review by saying something that sure sounds definitive like "This was an ill-thought out travesty," but that's still merely my own opinion. I may have formed that opinion because of facts, like maybe the lead actor was reading his lines off of a post-it note he had in his hand while clearly drunk, but at the end of the day, each person is allowed to take the facts at hand and form their own opinion on whether or not they enjoyed something.

I bring this up because I feel as though this story has an undeserved reputation.

Doctor Who, a series stretching three decades during its original run, has had its fair share of terrible plots, terrible acting, and terrible special effects. So why is it that a story that has a pretty good plot, some solid performances, and few-to-no botched effects went down in history as the worst story in the show's history, even by people who have never seen the episode?

Many reasons.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Recap: Goosebumps "Stay Out of the Basement Part 1"

I mentioned previously that R.L. Stine was a huge fan of E.C. Comics in general- and Tales From the Crypt in particular- when he was naught but a young'un. And there's a definite E.C. Comics influence in many of his Goosebumps stories.

Last March, R.L. Stine broke into the medium of comic books with the release of his first issue of Man-Thing for Marvel. And may I be the first to wish Mr. Stine the best of luck in the medium!

...Yes, I do realize I'm probably not the first to wish him luck by a long shot. I guess that's what I get for taking such a long break.

Anyway, today, I've got a little something special planned in Stine's honor. Since Man-Thing is a comic book about a scientist who became a living plant monster, I'll be looking at an episode of Goosebumps that basically does the same thing. It'll be like seeing Man-Thing done on a TV budget!

Which shouldn't fill you with hope, since the actual TV Man-Thing has 17% on Rotten Tomatoes as of this writing.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Review: "Spider-Man 3"

You know, it's funny how these things work sometimes. This week, as I posted my Recaps, I became aware of a so-called "Editor's Cut" of Spider-Man 3 that was due to be released soon.

I don't know too much about it, and when I first became aware of it, I thought it was a fan-made work, like the version of The Phantom Menace that cuts out Jar Jar Binks. But it seems to be a legitimate release, so perhaps someday I'll take a look at it and post my thoughts on it.

But as of right now... I don't think improving this movie is a matter of editing.


Thursday, June 15, 2017

Recap: "Spider-Man 3" Part 3: Friend or Foe

And here we are. The final third of the final third.

...

I was going to do a thing where I asked questions like "Will all these people's stories come to their conclusion?" but I already know that they don't. The ending is very disappointing and I'm not going to tease you with hope.

I mean, I'm not cruel.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Recap: "Spider-Man 3" Part 2: A Spider Steep'd

Okay, okay, I'm done referring to Peter's webs as "secretions."  I mean, I probably won't get another chance, since organic webshooters aren't too common in Spider-Man adaptations, but I'm starting to gross myself out.

I mean, the guy just secretes on everything.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Recap: "Spider-Man 3" Part 1: The End of the Green Goblin!

It's good to be back after that long break. Siting down and talking about a Spider-Man film feels like coming home. And hoo boy, there's a lot to analyze, so let's waste no more time.

Oh, and a big thanks to all my readers! Happy 4th NewtCave Anniversary!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Recap: "Spider-Man 3" Intro

Spider-Man 3 was inevitable.

The first film helped breathe new life into the superhero genre, and the second one has been referred to by some as one of the greatest superhero films of all time. Mostly right when it came out.

So, really, why wouldn't they make a third?

I seriously don’t think anything could have stopped this. Even if Tobey Maguire had suddenly and tragically passed away before they started filming, I’m certain they would have simply recast the role with Jake Gyllenhaal. After all, Sony was seriously considering it for the second film after Maguire kept complaining about a back injury he received during Seabiscuit.

In fact, I recently found out that Maguire was technically fired by Sony before they filmed the second movie, with Maguire having to fight to re-earn his role. (Maguire definitely came out on top, since they raised his pay by $13 million to do the second film, compared to the first.)

It wouldn’t be the last time Sony played hardball with the lead in their Spider-Man films, but that’s a story for another time.

Today, it’s time to see how what was to be a surefire hit left an entire franchise in question.

Like that time an even-numbered Star Trek movie turned out to be terrible and their only hope was to reboot.

Monday, April 17, 2017

The NewtCave Returns!

This June, posts will resume!

Thank you all for your continued patience!

Saturday, April 1, 2017

View Log: New Spider-Man Film

The latest Spider-Man film is the Spider-Man story we've been waiting for since Sam Raimi was making these. There's a snappy wit and a lot of love for the source material backed up by tremendous onscreen talent.

As for anything else... spoilers ahead!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Never the End

The NewtCave is going on hiatus for an undetermined period of time.

I will be using this time to focus on my health and wellbeing.

I'd like to thank all of my readers for reading and commenting over the past few years.

"One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then, there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine."

-The Doctor

Monday, March 13, 2017

So What's Been Going On?

This past week or two, I had me a little bit of a health scare. For all our sakes, I'll avoid the TMI details and get down to brass tacks.

I'm fine. I've been checked out and am currently awaiting the results of the test they're running to double-check, but my doctor has given me the a-ok.

On top of that, the biggest weather-related blackout in Michigan has wrecked my internet speed.

So just in case, the NewtCave will continue its impromptu break until Monday. Just to make sure I can get things back on track.

Thank you for your patience.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

March RE-Announcments

I hate to leave you all in the dark. But at the moment, the NewtCave will be going on a short break as I deal with real life.

Consider this an impromptu spring break.

A thousand apologies; I'll have an explanation within a week or so, and hopefully a schedule.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

March Announcements

I'm feeling much better, but have fallen behind in a few things, blog included.

The NewtCave will be Mondays-only for the foreseeable future, and posts resume Monday.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Ev'rybody Gettin' Sick

My girlfriend is sick. Her mom is sick. My cousin is sick. My aunt is sick. My grandma is sick. My grandpa is sick.

And yes, I am sick.

Apparently, most of the people on the above list got the flu a little over a week ago and ate only just now getting over it.

I just got it a couple days ago.

I'll keep you all updated.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Recap: Doctor Who "The Gunfighters" Episode 4: The O.K. Corral

Yes, with a title like that, it seems as though the fateful hour is inching closer. It's entirely the wrong hour, since the gunfight happened at a different time in real life, but why should the serial decide to suddenly get something correct?

The real Johnny Ringo would be pretty surprised to hear he was involved, too.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Review: Teen Titans Go! "La Larva de Amor"

Definitivamente uno de los mejores episodios de la serie. No, en realidad no hablo español. Así que espero que Google esté traduciendo correctamente mi plátano.

Recap: Teen Titans Go! "La Larva de Amor"

I have not yet covered a show on this blog that doesn't have at least one episode I like, except perhaps The Super Hero Squad Show. Ultimate Spider-Man, Goosebumps, and even Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. have all managed to impress me once or twice.

And yes, readers, that means what you think it means.

I like this episode.

I wish it didn't take me this long to find an episode I truly like, but the first few episodes were still finding their footing.

The show will still be finding its footing for a bit, but that's neither here nor there.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Review: Goosebumps "The Girl Who Cried Monster"

Honestly, I don't need to analyze the plot to this episode. I probably should, for the sake of thoroughness, but I'll freely admit that doing so in detail would be a waste of time for us both. I've got laundry to do and you only have so much time to read this during your bathroom break.

Plot/Themes
It riffs on "The Boy Who Cried Wolf," with the twist ending that the girl crying monster is also a monster.

Boom. Done.

You're smart. You get it. I shouldn't have to go into any more detail there if you actually read the Recap or watched the episode.

So now I can focus my efforts on an aspect of this episode that is worth talking about in detail: The world-building.

Recap: Goosebumps "The Girl Who Cried Monster"

February is Black History Month, that time of year where we honor the brave men and women throughout history who have given their time, effort, and in some cases, lives, to end slavery, stand up for equal rights, and strive to break racism's grip on the world. The idea that all peoples on this Earth can coexist, united in the knowledge that we are all just as human as each other, is an important one.

Unfortunately, there are only 12 months in the year. February honors a lot of other things, too. Most of them being things that nobody cares about.

February is also National Cherry Month, National Grapefruit Month, National Heart Month (because Valentine's Day, get it?), National Children's Dental Health Month, and many more, including National Library Lover's Month.

So on this, the spoopiest of all days, Monday the Thirteenth, I'll be looking at the only episode of Goosebumps, a staple of local libraries in the 1990s, to prominently feature a library. As well as one of my favorite female protagonists in the entire show, which is why I originally had this Recap reserved for Women's History Month before a certain library decided it would be a hoot to put anti-theft stickers on their DVDs that might break my DVD player, to say nothing of my computer’s disk drive.

"Not responsible,” my foot!
Yes, I realize that I’m observing Library Lovers Month in response to a library making things difficult for me.
I am well aware of the irony.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Recap: Dcotor Who "The Gunfighters" Episode 3: Johnny Ringo

When last we left off, the situation was grim. Or at the very least, dire. The Doctor was in the jailhouse, the Clantons still thought the time traveling old man was Doc Holliday, and now they've rounded up a mob to hang Steven unless the Doctor gives himself up.

The only way things could be worse is if they needed to hijack a train to power their time machine.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Review: The Batman "The Man Who Would Be Bat"

According to the book that forms the basis for this episode's title, the wheel of the world swings through the same phases again and again. Indeed, each and every Batman cartoon finds itself using the same characters over and over and over.

The creators of Beware the Batman, quite aware of this, opted to focus on lesser-known characters to combat this. Man-Bat, incidentally, was one of them.

But years before Beware the Batman attempted to turn Man-Bat into a sympathetic, tragic character, The Batman stuck to his classic depiction as a mad scientist-turned-monster, for better and for worse. But mostly for "meh."

Recap: The Batman "The Man Who Would Be Bat"

Today, somebody tries to fulfill that oldest of adages in the most literal way.

"Always be yourself. Unless you can be Batman."

Always be Batman.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Post Delayed to Tuesday

New internet cables have been going in nearby, which has been slowing down my alread-slow internet considerably.

Sorry for the inconvenience; I guess this is what I get for living in the middle of nowhere.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Doctor Who: "The Gunfighters" Episode 2: Don't Shoot the Pianist

When last we left off, the Doctor and company were in Tombstone, Arizona during the Old West. The Doctor had been mistaken for local troublemaker/dentist Doc Holliday by a man named Seth "Don't Call Me Snake-Eyes" Harper, who invited him to the saloon for a bit of "drinking" with the Clanton brothers, who just so happen to have a bone to pick with Holliday since he shot their other brother.

The Doctor's companions, mistaken for pals of "Holliday," are being forced to entertain the Clantons at gunpoint to ensure that they can't help "Holliday" get the drop on the Clantons.

And all because the Doctor insisted on getting a dentist to yank his tooth.

You think that's bad, though?
Troy ended up burning because the Doctor pretended he was Zeus and had a little idea anout a horse.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Site News: February 2017 Announcements

I know I usually post these on the first, but I had to make a couple last-second alterations to this month's schedule. But, uh, there's really nothing to announce. I'm healing up fine from the removal of my wisdom teeth, I'm back on solid foods, and I've been attempting to finish up my Reviews of Batman Returns as well as Ultimate Spider-Man Season 1. Expect those no later than March, depending on how scheduling works out. Possibly early April for the USM Review. It all depends on how the schedule works out; I'm still tweaking it.

Hey, speaking of Spider-Man, let me explain why I had to do some last-second alterations.  So, I'm at the mercy of my local library for a few of the things I cover on my blog. So when I thought it would be fun to do more Spectacular Spider-Man, I ordered the DVD through the library catalog. And it recently came in. And it had some kind of Jack Kirby-looking design on it. Like a sticker.This is anti-theft protection, which keeps people from snatching a DVD and running off with it.

Okay, I understand that preventing theft is a good thing that keeps libraries in business. But there's a problem with this system. They know what it is. And I know THEY know what the problem is because they put a sticker on the DVD telling me that playing the DVD they're letting me borrow runs the risk of damaging my DVD player.

So how about you don't put this thing on your DVDs that breaks DVD players, and I won't get mad at you for breaking my DVD player? I think that sounds like a fair deal.

If you got a sandwich from Subway and they told you that Subway is not responsible for any injury caused by the razors in the sandwich, I think you'd be pretty angry that they put razors in your sandwich.

To be fair, I understand that libraries need to ensure that people don't steal their stuff. But... seriously, can y'all find a better way to do it than by possibly breaking the DVD player of somebody who's playing by your rules?

Why not keep the DVD cases on display EMPTY and put the DVDs in after a customer takes it to the check-out counter? Like GameStop. As far as I know, there's only ONE LIBRARY in Michigan that uses this destructive method of anti-theft protection. I won't name names, but you know who you are.  I love you to death, library, but we're both going to need to work together to make this relationship strong.

Okay. Love you, library. I'm glad we could talk it out like this.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Recap: Doctor Who "The Gunfighters" Episode 1: A Holiday for the Doctor

Who doesn't love mixing Westerns with science fiction? The juxtaposition of the new and the old, the complex and the simple...

Okay, so it takes a bit more work than just tossing different elements together.
I mean, really, is it any wonder Firefly got the fan following it did?

So it's no wonder that Doctor Who has tried twice to make a Western episode catch on with audiences. Tried and failed both times, unfortunately. "A Town Called Mercy," though it certainly has its fans, seems to have left people thinking it should have had a bit more oomph to it, and "The Gunslingers" has often been called the worst serial of... ever.

Yeah, I'm diving right into the thick of Classic Doctor Who to start things off.

Intro: Doctor Who "The Gunfighters"

As my regular readers know, I recently had both of my wisdom teeth removed.

Here's the big bag of used gauze I've been creating to prove it.
Since I've been watching some Classic Doctor Who during my recovery (which helps take my mind of the fact that I can't really eat anything more complicated than sloppy joe meat, sans bun), I figure it's the perfect time to begin venturing forth into episodes that actually got made, as opposed to my earlier Recap/Review of the perpetually incomplete Fourth Doctor serial "Shada."

I will be doing this out of order, thanks to the difficulties with watching the series in its "proper" order. Attempting to watch Doctor Who in its broadcast order is a madness-inducing exercise in futility that puts many people off the Classic Series before they ever learn that they're not required to start at the beginning. The biggest obstacle in this respect, of course, being that some early episodes are either partially or completely missing, which I'll go into detail about in a future post.

As long as you know that the Doctor is an alien time-traveler who flies around in an oddly disguised time-ship alongside his often-human traveling companions... then you know all you need to know to start reading these Recaps. Heck, that single sentence was all you really need to begin watching the Classic Series, really.

But before we begin with today's story, "The Gunfighters," it's probably a good idea to go into why and how this story even exists. Especially since, as I'll later elaborate upon, there are plenty of people who wish that it never did exist.

And... well, I'll admit that I'd prefer this serial be one of the missing episodes rather than something like "Fury of the Deep" or "The Abominable Snowmen." But we can play the "What If?" game another time. Right now, it's time to play the "Why?" game.

And the "Who" game. Pun definitely intended.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Site News: Post-Wisdom Teeth Health Update

Today, I'll be posting something a little more personal than my usual fare, following the removal of my wisdom teeth.

First and foremost, I am fine. I just can't have solid foods the way I used to for a couple weeks.

The idea of having surgery performed on me was, I admit, very stressful, and it was one of the contributing factors to my many late updates for the last few months. I was utterly convinced that I was going to die for a while. As it turns out, I'm terrified of surgery. So really, this whole experience was one of self-discovery.

But all things considered, extraction of wisdom teeth is a relatively safe procedure, with even elevated risks being no big deal in the larger scheme of things.

So for those of you out there who might be either curious regarding the procedure, or might need some reassurance for your own procedure, or just what to hear what I was l like while hopped up on meds, this is the story of the removal of my wisdom teeth.

About a year ago, my dentist recommended that they should come out some time in mid-2016. They weren't impacted, or anything, but they had no sense of personal space. And even with my regular flossing routine, they could cause tiny food and drink particles to stick between my molars and weaken the enamel.

And... yeah, I didn't follow my dentist's advice. I was put off by the idea of surgery, and I instead opted to just try and floss and rinse really well. Which is why December saw me taking multiple trips to the dentist to fill in the worn-down parts between my molars.

Two trips to get fillings in my molars was enough. I decided those wisdom teeth were coming out.

Like most chronic worrywarts, I went online and found a plethora of frightening articles about "the risks they don't tell you about!" and so forth and suchlike. So that was a mistake.

I went to the recommended dental surgery guy, and he filled me in on all the risks, And actually, there were surprisingly few, and they were all comparatively minor, for surgery.

The big two possible problems are as follows.

1: The wisdom teeth have taken permanent root.
This applies to people past their mid-20s. So that worried me, even though all that does is make them a little harder to get out.

2: The wisdom tooth root has jammed itself into your sinus and actually acts like a plug, keeping fluid up in your sinuses.
This apparently occurs in about 1% of cases. And when it happens... well, it's no big deal. They grab some gum tissue, drag it over the hole, and sew it up. No big deal.

He also told me that I would be getting local anesthesia (no big deal there; not after my fillings) as well as sedation by IV drip, which is considered a safer alternative to general anesthesia.

And yet, I left the consultation still terrified. What if I had some negative reaction to the sedation? What if... well, I was basically worried that anything that I had no power over could go wrong. It's at times like this that I remember the words of Star Trek's Worf.

"Thinking about what you can't control only wastes energy. And creates its own energy."

As a chronic worrywort, this advice has actually gotten me through a lot of sleepless nights.

But as the days went by, I found myself unable to properly focus on the NewtCave, as I'm sure many of you noticed. It took me much longer than usual to get my posts up to a quality level I was happy with. That is, when I could even find the willpower to work on them.

And then, the fateful day came. January 20th. Which just so happened to also be Inauguration Day. As if that wasn't already bad enough.

I took my Valium at noon, one hour before my appointment. That kept me nice and loopy between watching Judge Dredd and paying at the front desk. Then they took me back, gave me an oxygen mask, hooked up the laughing gas, and left me for a bit.

I was not calm. Every once in a while, the machine monitoring my pulse would let loose a quick "beepbeepbeep" and flash a warning about my CO2 levels. Yeah, that calmed me down just fine. (As it turns out, they hadn't hooked up the thing it was trying to measure yet, causing the machine to freak out.)

But they all filed in to begin the job, talking about the inauguration and some of the funny things that people have been saying.

They found a vein in my hand and jammed in the IV the last thing I really remember is being told that the sedation would sneak up on me. And I guess it did, because the next thing I knew, my girlfriend was in the room and Peter Frampton's "Show Me the Way" was playing on speakers overhead.

Everything went as well as could be expected, with both my wisdom teeth out with a minimum of fuss. (My bottom wisdom teeth don't exist. I don't just mean they never came in, they do not exist and never have.) The procedure was actually done in around half an hour, which is also the amount of time I spent crying after the procedure.

Apparently, as they explained to my girlfriend, crying is one of the side effects of whatever drug they gave me. And I'm not afraid to tell you that I was bawling.

It was a very emotional moment for me, 50% because of the drug, but 50% because I was so glad to be alive. Except... I was convinced for the longest time that they hadn't actually done anything yet, since I didn't remember them doing it. So you can add confusion to my simultaneous depression and elation.

The first words I remember saying were "I like Peter Frampton." I also remember that when they unhooked me from the monitor, it started resuming its little beeping fit.

"Shut up, you don't know anything!" I said to the monitor.

I asked the nurse about my blood pressure, which I was apparently very concerned about, and then at some point, I told both my girlfriend and the nurse to stop patronizing me. I remember being aware enough to know that they were saying things like "Yeah," and "Uh-huh" like you would do to a child, or... well, somebody who was delirious. Which I was. I was also aware enough to realize that what I had said was rude, so I ended up apologizing and telling the nurse that she had a nice bedside manner.

Speaking of apologizing, I apparently did a lot of that, too. I don't exactly remember what for, though.

What I found most difficult, however, was getting up.

"Do you want to try standing up?" I was asked.

"I can't," I said. "I'm in a chair."

But miraculously, I found some way to my feet and was helped to the car by the wonderful nurse who must have put up with a lot of nonsense from me. She even helped me get my coat on.

I sobered up along the way to the pharmacy, where I mostly lamented being unable to eat anything from all the delicious restaurants we were passing. Sensing my frustration, my girlfriend reminded me that I had bought some nice applesauce the other day to eat during my recovery.

I was not as enthusiastic as she was and decided to swear at the idea of applesauce.

The trip to the pharmacy was uneventful, save for saying hi to a worker there I went to high school with. The trip home was just as uneventful, as were the various naps I took for a few hours.

I have to go back in a few days, and they'll take a look and see how my sockets are healing up... but yeah, I'm doin' fine.

In order to distract myself from the fact that I can't eat much more than soggy bread, broth, and room temperature yogurt for the time being... well, I have little to do but work on the NewtCave and sleep.

But to keep from overexerting myself in any way, I'll be taking the rest of this week off from new posts, although I will be using that time to finally sort the posts from the end of last year.

Really, I just don't want to rush myself and fall into the old trap of having to post things late.

Regular posts resume the 30th, and February 1st will feature a schedule update which, since I won't be wasting time worrying about by wisdom teeth, I might actually be able to keep for the first time in a while.

I know exactly what I'm posting the 30th, too. It's gonna be a bit of a "Me Day" for a while. And since I already covered "Me Day," I'll be looking at the Classic Doctor Who serial that I've been watching while I recover.

See you then!

Friday, January 20, 2017

A Farewell to Tooths

Okay, so by the time you read this, I will have had my wisdom teeth removed. I am probably currently enduring pain and/or some kind of delirium.

Insert cheap shot comparing the experience to watching Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. here.

On the bright side, hopefully this means I can eliminate "dental consultations" from my schedule for good. As much as I appreciate all the hard work my dentist has been doing to fix the damage caused by my wisdom teeth trying to get all buddy-buddy with the rest of my mouth, I definitely hope I won't be seeing him for a while.

Updates will be coming soon as to how I'm doing, as well as when I can finally get back to working on the blog. Expect a status update Monday... if I'm up to it. Certainly no later than Wednesday.

Thank you all for your understanding and (hopefully) support through this.

I eagerly await being able to consume solid foods again.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Review: Avengers Assemble "Downgraded"

You know, I think that may have been the most video game references I've ever made in a single Recap. And this episode had nothing to do with video games.

Chalk it up to the fact that I got my dad Skyrim for Christmas, I guess.

Recap: Avengers Assemble "Downgraded"

Well, the wayward Infinity Stones have been all accounted for. And since there's some time until the obligatory mid-season climax, Avengers Assemble is continuing its quest to make Hawkeye into more than a shallow snarker.

Hawkeye's hidden depths came up a couple of times in the first season, but became a semi-regular thing in Season 2 with episodes like "Head to Head" and "Beneath the Surface" demonstrating why he's an Avenger, despite his lack of "power."

Another thing Season 2 likes to do is justify Falcon's presence on the team with episodes like "Nighthawk." So it was only a matter of time before these two characters got a team-up episode.

Plus, they're both named after birds. Hey, if it was enough of a reason for Nighthawk to take an interest in Falcon....

Friday, January 13, 2017

Review: Goosebumps "Piano Lessons Can Be Murder"

Aw, crap, I just realized that I didn't work in any Billy Joel references in the Recap.

Dang it, how did I miss the obvious one?

Recap: Goosebumps "Piano Lessons Can Be Murder"

Good ol' piano lessons. That most cliche of things that parents force their children to do against their will. Well, one of the most cliche things. See also: Homework and chores.

My sister and I both took piano lessons, though it never went anywhere for me. Or her, technically, but I was the one who went ahead and gave up. Not only am I incapable of reading sheet music, but my fingers are just short enough and wide enough to make piano playing an exercise in futility.

Anyway, let's see if either piano lessons or murder shows up. You might think that murder might be out of the question for a show rated Y7, but you'd be surprised how often murder happens in this show. In fact, I might have to start adding a murder counter to my Goosebumps Reviews. With separate tallies for murders committed by the protagonists and antagonists, respectively.

...I think we both know that this has to happen. I'll get right on adding that to the end of my previous Goosebumps Reviews ASAP.

Oh, great, another thing to juggle alongside increasingly-urgent real life things.
As if archiving every post since November wasn't enough.
Not to mention all those pictures I've spent nearly a whole year not fixing....

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Review: Superman: TAS "Fun and Games"

What is it about childlike, toy-obsessed men that we as a culture find so creepy?

Could it be the contradiction? That they seem to have simple, childlike minds, and yet they're capable of manipulating, and often creating, intricate examples of craftsmanship? That perhaps there is something within them able to manipulate US through their actions in the same way they would pull the strings of a marionette?

...I dunno. I'm just here to talk about this Superman episode.

Recap: Superman: TAS "Fun and Games"

Today, Superman gets to deal with his first colorful, gimmicky villain. Which is more than his film counterpart has done to date.

It's always Lex Luthor this, General Zod that...

Well, I guess Nuclear Man counts as colorful and gimmicky.

Though there are some who would declare "Nuclear Man never counts. For anything."

Monday, January 9, 2017

Recap/Review Delayed to Wednesday

Yeah, because THIS is how I wanted to start the year off.

Long story short, I accidentally deleted the review I was going to post, along with some notes for the Recap. I've been re-making it all day, but I'd rather not send out a rushed, unready review that I whipped up in a day.

So right now, I'm getting dinner. I'll continue work tomorrow and get it up by Wednesday.

On the bright side, I did manage to complete a Teen Titans Go! Recap/Review for later this month today, as well as a special Friday the 13th Recap/Review. (The actual day; nothing to do with the movie.)

Sorry about my continued struggles to get back on track. It was easier to derail my flow than it is to get it back.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

2017 Announcments/Apologies

Okay. So.

First and foremost, I'm sorry.

Basically, the holidays.

Seeing family members that I don't usually get to see, worrying about gifts and preparations, dental appointments... I got behind. And once I was behind, it was easy to stay behind. And just as easy to maintain radio silence. For the lack of communication, above all else, I apologize.

Unfortunately... Things are going to be a little hectic for a bit, thanks to an upcoming appointment to get some wisdom teeth removed. A new schedule for January is being formulated, and any and all delays will be addressed, rather than keeping you all in the dark.

But I hope you all had a safe and happy holiday season; and I hope to be able to make up for December's sudden hiatus with a few special posts down the line.

Monday will feature the first of those, so I'll hopefully see you then!