Friday, April 30, 2010

2010 Brewers

Many people have jumped on the Bucks bandwagon, myself included, but I will not forget about the Brewers, and it is unlikely that I will ever blog about the Bucks, so let's take a look at the 2010 Milwaukee Brewers.
As of now, the Brewers stand at 9-13. That is pretty poor. I'm a huge Brewers fan and an optimist, but I really don't see the Brewers doing much better than .500 this season, but you never know. I'll stick with them

Positives: Ryan Braun - sick
Prince Fielder - fat, needs to get his stroke back
Randy Wolf - looking to be a pretty nice signing
Todd Coffey - fat, sprints to the mound every appearance
Sausage Race- still getting the fans to stand up
promos - I think the Brewers have the best marketing team in sports, tons of half off days early in the season, bobble-heads, and this 40 year anniversary should provide some fun too
small ball - Brewers got speed this year and are using it, even Brauny.

Negatives: There is a lot to be worried about.
Bullpen - I thought the Bullpen was going to be the strength of this team. Boy was I wrong. Four blown saves for Hoffman already this year. That is his total for last season. I believe he has already given up 6 homers this year after only giving up 2 last year and he has never in his career given up homers in two straight games, until Tuesday and Wednesday that is. Hawkins had some rough outings too, and I never really have faith in Vargas. The Brewers when leading going into the 8th inning have given up the lead 6 times already this season! That is dreadful. But, at the same time, think if we would have won half of those games (we did win one), we would be 11-11 and people would be a lot less down on the Crew.
Doug Davis - not a good signing. Did anyone really think he would be any better than a 10-12 pitcher or so? And now, even that is a stretch.
Gallardo's pitch count- This kid has great stuff, and gets W's and K's, but can't pitch more than 5 or 6 innings for some reason.
Corey Hart

Keys to the season
We know Fielder and Braun will be beasts, but there are a few key spots that will tell the tale of the Brewers' 2010 season
Carlos Gomez - batting # 2 this guy needs to get on base. He has the speed and seems to be alright with the bat, but with Ricky in front and Braun and Fielder behind, Gomez must take advantage of what he's given
Casey McGehee - if he can stay hot, the Crew will score a lot of runs
Escobar - most important stats for this guy will be errors and OB%
LaTroy Hawkins - I feel he has the stuff to be an awesome set up man, maybe even a closer, hopefully he can lock down the 8th
Dave Bush - is there a more inconsistent player in the league? I feel this guy can pitch a 3 hit shutout and then the next start give up 8 runs in two innings. I just don't get it. Small margin of error I guess.

Hopefully those 5 guys will play to their potential and the Brewers will compete. If not, it will be a long season, and that may mean "See you later Prince."
But, I am not a bandwagon Brewer's fan, so I will be there for it all.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Survivor Season 20

Well, just like Lost, my comic book tournament has led me to neglect Survivor, but now you get my stunning analysis of this season - Heroes vs. Villains.

I'm pretty sure I've stated multiple times that I don't like it when people on Survivor already know each other. That totally changes the game. All-Star seasons tend to focus entirely on strategy, as contestants think and rethink every possible outcome, and sometimes that is boring for the viewers. That being said, Mark Burnett and Survivor Producers know what they are doing. I'd say about 16 of the 20 Survivors have been perfectly cast. I like a lot of the cast members - Rob, Jerri, Coach, Tyson - a lot better than I did the first time around. This season has been solid, and has been very entertaining the last few weeks, starting with the Rob/Russell feud. The Heroes vs. Villains theme is working well too. Once the inferior players were out of the games, this one really heated up. I love the Heroes team of Colby, JT, Amanda, Candice, and Rupert. They really took over in challenges.
A couple things to point out.
-Rob passing out.
-James getting injured again.
-Coach crying.
-Tyson getting voted off due solely to his not following the plan.
-JT giving Russell the idol. Seriously? Wow. You have to conclude that none of the other contestants saw Russell's Samoa season.
-Parvati's double idol give away - best Survivor move ever? Yes. I think so. It starts with totally having Russell wrapped around her finger and giving her the idol. She keeps the second one secret. Then she assesses the situation perfectly, giving up both the idols to the Jerri and Sandra, the two players the Heroes have been contemplating voting off. Man, I think this puts her as the favorite for "Best Survivor Contestant Ever" not necessarily meaning she is favorite for this season. I'm hoping for Sandra to join up with the Heroes as it appeared in the previews.

Who's gonna take it home? I don't think Russell or Parvati will win it or past winner Sandra. Don't sleep on Danielle and Candice, both similar players, unremarkable the first time, and in good positions this year partially because of that and partially because of prowess in challenges. I could also see Candice flipping pretty easily, though. So, my predictions - Russell off next and some point down the line Candice and Amanda flipping to join Parvati and Danielle, leaving Colby, Rupert, and Jerri the odd people out. Though I am rooting for Rup and Colb.

Yes, so I am glad this is once again an entertaining season. I hope it remains that way. It has shown me that I would definitely not be a Survivor All-Star. These people are just crazy good at reading people, and then manipulating them.

Friday, April 23, 2010

LOST Thoughts

So, I've been stuck in the lovely comic book world for a while and haven't had a chance to comment on the final season of Lost. As you know from numerous post, Lost of one of my favorite shows, one of the few I look forward to each week. I have to say without reservation that this season is disappointing. There have been a few episodes that I had trouble finishing because they were so slow or disjointed. Here are some of my critiques.

1. This season seems to be making all other seasons inconsequential or even moot.
Does it really what mattered in season two? Did Boone's death or Eko's death or Charlie's death really do anything? All the character development in seasons 1, 2, and 3 pretty much doesn't matter right now. It seems like it's all about Jacob and fake Locke and maybe a few other key characters. I don't think if Widmore had taken over the island that anything would have changed. It wouldn't have matter if the "Others" would have won against the Oceanic Survivors. Characters like Ben and Richard that for seasons seemed powerful important really don't matter anymore.
What's worse, it is pretty much forgetting the whole Oceanic Six story. All of season 4 was about getting off that island. Half of season 5 was about getting back to the island, and now they're trying to get off the island again. This repetition was not mentioned until Jack brought it up in the last episode. Also, all the time travel was pretty much forgotten, like it never happened. And, the temple and Dogen and the characters introduced in the first half of this season, who cares?

2. Sideways Reality - It's like a bad issue of Marvel's "What if..." and also reminds me of the Marvel Ultimate line. "Let's tell the same story again but alter it slightly and put one or two characters in different positions." I understand the idea of fate, and stressing that certain things are meant to happen regardless of circumstances, but do we really need to see Kate on the run again, Jack stressing over his father's death, Locke wrestling with his disability, Claire having issues with her baby? No not really. And we get it, the realities are connected. Like we didn't see that coming. Also, they really take away from the island story. Just when things are beginning to get interesting on the island, we spend way too long in the other reality.

3. Mysteries and mysteries revealed - I feel the story telling has changed over the years. Before viewers would be in the same shoes as the character - what is this island? this smoke monster? who are the others? But now I feel it's kind of different. The producers and writers are just playing with the audience, withholding information, giving false clues, producing mysteries and answers that do not evolve the plot. Before you could actually make educated guesses on what was happening and what was going to happen, kind of playing the detective. Now, that is really tough.
And, there is going to be tons of stuff that is not answered. That is a fact. And, even when stuff is revealed, it still is kind of lame and might not be the truth. Case in point - Christian was actually Flocke, Flocke is the smoke monster, Desmond was the package. Eh, there was not a real wow moment there.

Yeah, there you go. So, my love for Lost is fading. Only a few episodes left. I am confident that everything will be tied together, but that doesn't mean that these will be good episodes, even after the fact. My biggest example of this season's inferiority would be this season's Desmond Episode. It just wasn't very good compared to past Desmond episodes. He's already been been reunited with Penny twice. We've already seen him in a reality that he does not belong. It contained Desmond and Daniel, my two favorite characters, but still wasn't good.

Well, I'm done ranting. I'm confident the end will be cool, and hopefully I'll be made salty.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Comic Bracket Final Analysis

A pretty special tournament has made it to the final round. Two contestants remain.
Doctor Doom and the Silver Surfer.
Both contestants have long histories. Both were created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in Fantastic Four. Both has some of the most impressive arsenals in the comic book world. Both have some amazing victories and some devastating loses.
It is the alien power cosmic versus the human pushing the limits of technology and sorcery, the villain versus the hero.

Let's take a look at history.
Being key members of the Fantastic Four world, these two have crossed paths in the past a good number of times. The first, and maybe the best example of a one-on-one battle is in Fantastic Four #57. Doctor Doom tricks the Silver Surfer and steals his power cosmic.
It will be a great battle. Please vote.

So who do I think will win? Well, there are a few ways to look at it.
In a straight up one-on-one battle the Surfer would definitely have the edge. His power cosmic would be too much for Doom, despite the fact that Doom has defeated him in the past and even taken the powers of the godlike Beyonder. Doom has a pretty poor track record as far as won-loss record goes, but he is usually fighting solo against 4 or more.
But, if Doom again had the element of secrecy, and could get an early leg up, he would have a strong chance.
Also, Doom is a much better character. He has much more depth than the Surfer. Despite his many faults he is human. He is way more creative. In a battle he could transport the Surfer to Hell, he could use his time machine, he could force the Surfer to encounter the refugees of all the planets he destroyed. Doom really has nothing you could use against him as leverage. He is arrogant, yet uncompromising.
Well, that's about all I got. Vote for who you think will win. Vote for who you like better. Enjoy.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Comic Book Bracket Final

Silver Surfer vs. Dr. Doom.
You decide the winner. Voting on the right hand side.
More analysis to follow soon.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Comic Book Bracket Final Four

Well, we are on to the Final Four. We had some very close matchups in the previous round. Spider-Man dominated the Invisible Woman 24-11. Thanos started slow, but came back in the end, but Dr. Doom was just too strong, winning 20 -14.
Thor overcame the Thing 19-17 in a great match. I was hoping for the upset. And Silver Surfer beat Batman with the buzzer beater.

Vote for who you want to make the championship.

Who Will Win this Battle?

View Results
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Who will win this battle?
Dr. Doom
Thor free polls

Friday, April 2, 2010

Comic Book Bracket - Elite Eight

We made it to the final 8. We have a few surprises, but as you can see by the field, all contestants are worthy of being here, and any of them can win it all. Let's get to the matchups.
Now it is your turn to decide the winners!

4. The Invisible Woman
Greatest Hits: Fantastic Four 245, 259-261, 280-284 (Malice)
Weaknesses: Power's still unexploited, Jessica Alba, lets teammates do lots of the work


2. Spider-Man
Greatest Hits: Amazing Spider Man 31-33, 121-122 (Death of Gwen Stacy and Green Goblin), 229-230 (Juggernaut)
Weaknesses: Women, can't eat with his costume on, kissing Kirsten Dunst

Who will win this battle?
The Invisible Woman
Spider-Man free polls

Greatest Hits: Year One, The Long Halloween, No Man's Land
Weaknesses: wussy as a young boy, hangs out with boys


2. The Silver Surfer
Great Hits: Silver Surfer #1, Fantastic Four 121-123, Fantastic Four 55
Weaknesses: Girl he is looking for most likely died hundreds of years ago, guilt, loads and loads of guilt, Silver genitalia (Maybe that is a strength)

Who will win this battle?
Silver Surfer free polls

5. Dr. Doom
Greatest Hits: Fantastic Four 236, 246-247. 257, 67 (new series), Dr. Strange and Dr. Doom: Triumph and Torment
Weaknesses: hubris, no friends, family hates him


3. Thanos
Greatest Hits: Thanos Guest, Infinity Gauntlet, Captain Marvel 25-33
Weaknesses: Loves Death, ability to steal defeat from the clutches of victory

Who will win this battle?
Dr. Doom
Thanos free polls

1. Thor
Greatest Hits: Thor 165-169, 337-340 (Beta Ray Bill), 380-385 (Ragnarok)
Weaknesses: Split ends, Kenneth Branagh


3. Thing
Greatest Hits: Fantastic Four 40, 51, 236, 274
Weakness: propensity to get seasick, love of catch-phrases, easily revolts and terrifies women and children

Who will win this battle
The Thing free polls